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The Worst Ideas in History

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History is full of terrible ideas, and some have done tremendous damage. There’s little doubt that Communism was history’s worst idea.

It was a system that kept people poor, and it’s probably not possible to calculate the economic damage it did to the Soviet Union, Mao’s China, Cuba, Eastern Europe, North Korea, parts of Africa.

People have, however, tried to calculate the number of people Communist regimes killed outright through executions, man-made famines, forced labor, and eliminating entire political classes.

Estimates run from 60 million to well over 100 million. The Chinese top the list, but the Soviets starved and executed millions of people, too.

­­Not everyone is cured of Communism. A 2011 Rasmussen poll of Americans found that “11% Say Communism Better Than U.S. System of Politics and Economics.”

Another 13 percent weren’t sure. If you call it socialism, Democrats love it. The blue bars are Democrats and red bars are Republicans.

Democrat support for socialism grew from 50 percent in 2010 to 65 percent in 2021.

There is a more recent terrible idea that has not killed as many people, but we’re far from finished with it. It’s the idea that if Americans and Europeans shoot and blow up enough people in authoritarian countries, the survivors will become liberal democrats. The great political scientist John Mearsheimer explains in his book The Great Delusion that since the end of the Cold War, the United States has fought seven wars — every one of them to bring democracy to foreigners who didn’t want it, and every one failed.

We have been at war every day since the month after the 9/11 attacks.

There have been spectacular disasters in Libya, Iraq, and Afghanistan — three perfectly good countries that we wrecked. Last year, the Taliban kicked us out of Afghanistan after we spent 20 years patiently killing them for their own good. 100,000 corpses later, somehow they still don’t love either us or democracy. Here is an estimate of the casualties from the so-called “war on terror,” which is another name for bringing democracy to Muslims.

The Watson Institute at Brown University figures a total of about 900,000 dead, including 15,000 Americans and another 15,000 NATO allies. This doesn’t even include the trillions of dollars all this killing and total failure cost the tax payer.

You may be thinking Nazism was another terrible wrong idea.

Here is one estimate of the deaths in the Second World War, for a total of 70 to 85 million people.

TheShadowed at English Wikipedia, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

That’s a huge number, but the cause was not so much an idea as aggressive nationalism and the desire for conquest — which has always been part of history.

Likewise, although the 30 Years War of 1618 to 1648 killed as many as 8 million people and may have slaughtered one third of the population of Germany, the fighting was over Catholic/Protestant differences and political rivalries, not abstract ideas.

Some famous people who had correct ideas got in trouble with people who had the wrong ideas. Here is Galileo being tried for heresy because he insisted that the earth goes around the sun.

He was right and the Pope was wrong, but Galileo got 10 years of house arrest. Giordano Bruno, who was also right about the earth and the sun, wasn’t so lucky.

The Church burned him at the stake for heresy.

Much as people like to mock the Catholic Church for being wrong about the solar system, it hardly made any difference to the lives of anyone but the heretics.

It made it harder to predict eclipses, but everybody else got along fine. It was a mistake that didn’t matter.

There is a different mistake — very much on the loose today — that matters a lot. It isn’t killing people by the million, but it could eventually destroy the United States and the West. And it’s so obviously wrong it’s astonishing anyone believes it.

It’s the idea that every racial and ethnic group is, on average, equivalent and interchangeable. And this everybody’s-the-same foolishness is behind the other crazy idea I mentioned that’s wreaking havoc: that everyone in the world — everyone — is perishing to be just like us.

Any dumbbell can walk around an American city and suspect the races may not all be the same.

And anyone with the faintest curiosity and an internet connection can find out for sure that they’re not.

But this dogma of absolute equality and equivalence has two disastrous implications. The first is that you could swap out the population of, say, France, and swap in a nice mix of Muslims and Africans, and France would still be French — maybe better!

In the long run, this would mean the end of Western Civilization. Muslims and Africans didn’t create it, don’t like it, and won’t keep it going.

The other terrible implication is that if non-white people — especially blacks — are living with white people and they aren’t doing as well — which is always the case — it can only be the fault of the white people. As I never tire of pointing out, even the relentlessly lefty Wikipedia admits that “A 2001 meta-analysis of the results of 6,246,729 participants tested for cognitive ability or aptitude found a difference in average scores between black people and white people of 1.1 standard deviations.”

Here is a graphic representation of IQ differences, and an explanation of what they mean, not just for blacks and whites, but for Asians and Hispanics, too.

It should be taught in every high school in America. Instead, it’s taboo.

The fundamental message here is there is no chance blacks, as a group, will do as well as whites at any of the things that require brains: get good grades, invent things, make money, start companies, make it to the middle or upper classes, or even stay out of trouble with the law. It sounds harsh to say so, but it’s a physical, biological impossibility. Some blacks will do very well, and good for them, but the averages cannot be the same.

Instead of recognizing and accepting this, American society insists that every black failure is our fault. We are supposed to be keeping black and brown people down whether we want to or not, because that’s our nature. This is why we owe blacks reparations, and why we must discriminate in their favor at every turn, have two national holidays to celebrate them, make excuses for black violence and rioting, unmask every white hero as a racist, and torment anyone who doesn’t go along with this.

If you talk about these things, you can’t have a Twitter account of a YouTube channel — in a country that is supposed to value freedom of speech.

Also, by constantly telling blacks that everything that goes bad for them is our fault, we encourage them to blame us, resent us, and ultimately, hate us. Just take a look at black Twitter sometime to see what they think of us.

We have poured more moral energy into lifting up blacks than anything else the country ever did, except maybe fighting the Second World War. It’s not working, and it can’t work. Many whites are already angry about being blamed and penalized for black failure they didn’t cause. I don’t know what it will take, but whites will eventually wake up. Maybe there will be a relatively soft landing: A study on the unequal racial distribution of genes for intelligence that is so powerful and so convincing that not even the New York Times can ignore it.

Or maybe a hard landing. Barack and Michelle Obama get a fat, reparations-for-slavery check that you pay for.

Or maybe a black district attorney gets caught on a hot mic saying he doesn’t prosecute black violence against whites because white people deserve it.

Soviet Communism staggered on for 80 years.

Eventually, it just couldn’t keep denying reality and it fell apart. How much longer do we have?

If you count the 1954 Supreme Court decision of Brown v Board of Education as year one, we’re 68 years into craziness. The sooner we wake up from the American nightmare, the sooner we can start trying to build a county based on the truth rather than one that peddles guilt, resentment, illusions, and self-hatred.