Comments: Rupert Murdoch Has Some Fascinating Theories On Eugenics He'd Like To Share With Us All

"he was propounding the genetic theory that the basic problem of the Muslim people was that they married their cousins."

I didn't know that Muslims were from Arkansas.

Posted by Green Eagle at September 4, 2008 03:06 PM

Weren't Joseph and Mary (parents of You Know Who) first cousins?
Didn't Darwin and Einstein marry first cousins?
Aren't about 20% of all marriages on this blessed planet between first cousins?
Is that how the term "kissin' cousins" got started?
Or, maybe he's referring to Norman Cousins.

But you gotta love Fitzgerald's tone, as in "science and art and all that."
We're up to our neck in "all that" by now.

Posted by donescobar at September 4, 2008 03:59 PM

Wal-Mart science and K-Mart art, I thinking the mall (and attending parking lot) property looked A LOT healthier when the Indians owned---???? had some sort of political control over it.

Posted by Mike Meyer at September 4, 2008 07:21 PM

Frankly the Nordics did make all the good stuff...unfortunately they kept it in Scandinavia.

Posted by En Ming Hee at September 4, 2008 09:57 PM

g. eagle:
Jokes about "hillbillies" and incest are no less bigoted than jokes about any other group and its stereotypes.
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Anyone who's worked with, or been around people who've worked with, domestic animals knows "line breeding" - intentional incest - is an effective way to get desired qualities to become a dominant feature of the line.
Incest doesn't always produce the detrimental recessive gene profile. It can in fact produce superior animals.
People are animals.
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If there's a quality about Muslims that sets them apart it may more likely be that the religion comes out of an extremely harsh landscape where survival depends on strict adherence to codes that reflect that environment and its exigencies.
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Rupert Murdoch is living proof of Lord Acton's perspicuity.

Posted by Roy Belmont at September 4, 2008 11:30 PM

If there's a quality about Muslims that sets them apart it's more that the religion comes out of an extremely harsh political landscape where so many less-extreme organizing social principles have been bombed or bulldozed out of existence.

Posted by Dan at September 5, 2008 01:26 AM
Wal-Mart science and K-Mart art, ...

Mike, I think the basic problem of the American people are those little scooters that hefty citizens use to scoot around Walmart and Sam's Club.

I don't know man -- I can't look at plus sized people riding around in those things and not think, "Jeez, but we're fucked, well and good. Still, let me focus on how fucked up the Muslims are because I can't do anything about the scooters and their users."

Posted by Labiche at September 5, 2008 07:11 AM

Silly donescobar, John didn't mix any of his stuff with Mary. Don't you remember the cherry tree song?

One problem shared by almost all current religions is that they originated in social situations which no longer apply. I mean, shellfish? Fabrics made of two different materials? Tents with mildew? Gays?

Anyway, there are other problems too. I would rather celebrate Nordic good stuff, like IKEA.

Posted by Bob In Pacifica at September 5, 2008 09:27 AM

I think the specific problem that Murdoch is talking about is the extremely high rate of birth defects among people of Pakistani origin in Britain, who also practice cousin marriage at a much higher rate than the British population generally.

Cousin marriage generation after generation can't be eugenically beneficial.

If someone wants to point me to any scientific breakthroughs that have issued from the Muslim world in the last five centuries I would love to hear about them.

Posted by Seth at September 5, 2008 01:48 PM

@ Seth -

I get your point about "the last five centuries", but why restrict yourself to that time frame? Even if cousin marriage is preferred, I can't believe that most members of these societies marry their first cousins.

(Not to mention, the human genetic inheritance is breathtakingly small in any event. All of us are very closely related.)

So, how about this list?

Some of the inventions believed to have come from the Islamic Golden Age include the camera obscura, coffee, soap bar, shampoo, pure distillation, liquefaction, crystallisation, purification, oxidisation, evaporation, filtration, distilled alcohol, uric acid, nitric acid, alembic, crankshaft, valve, reciprocating suction piston pump, mechanical clocks driven by water and weights, programmable humanoid robot, combination lock, quilting, pointed arch, scalpel, bone saw, forceps, surgical catgut, windmill, inoculation, smallpox vaccine, fountain pen, cryptanalysis, frequency analysis, three-course meal, stained glass and quartz glass, Persian carpet, modern cheque, celestial globe, explosive rockets and incendiary devices, torpedo, and artificial pleasure gardens.

via http://en.wikipedia.orgwiki/Islamic_Golden_Age

Posted by Aaron Datesman at September 5, 2008 05:33 PM

Let's consult science on the subject.

http://discovermagazine.com/2003/aug/featkiss

Posted by marcus at September 5, 2008 05:45 PM

Somebody needs to tell Murdoch that marrying a cousin is not "just awful".

Posted by Maezeppa at September 5, 2008 07:13 PM

Anyone who's worked with, or been around people who've worked with, domestic animals knows "line breeding" - intentional incest - is an effective way to get desired qualities to become a dominant feature of the line.
Incest doesn't always produce the detrimental recessive gene profile. It can in fact produce superior animals.

Actual line breeding usually requires culling the progeny.

Posted by joel hanes at September 6, 2008 05:33 AM

"[Murdoch]’s not quite a liberal."
In the way Gandhi wasn't quite a bloodthirsty murderer?

Posted by me at September 8, 2008 08:18 AM