“BIRTHRATE” IS THE LATEST BUZZWORD with good reason: talking democracy won’t work without thinking demography. Power to the people as a political principle depends on what kind of people you’ve got — and the balance of power between your country and its competitors depends in turn on how many people you’ve got. Five years ago Pat Buchanan, in The Death of the West, warned, “As a growing population has long been a mark of healthy nations and rising civilizations, falling populations have been a sign of nations and civilizations in decline.” Europe and Australia must reckon with the numbers as the Muslim world exports a generation of testy youths the West cannot control. (China, land of aborted females, lords its excess of males over East Asia in similar fashion.) To the West, terrorism is a threat shaped by poor cultural management in the Middle East — even deliberate manufacture — of angry young men, “radical losers” born in a world that denies the reward of order and family.
Meanwhile, as Michel Houellebecq knows, the West turns out radical losers of its own: in Philip Rieff’s shorthand, our “culture is producing more and more serial killers.” Tom Wolfe tartly notes (“Prolegomena to Any Future of Human Sexuality,” TAS, March 2006) that free love “comes with a price. Populations set free by the sexual revolution must necessarily plummet” — as those locked in the pleasureless dark ages skyrocket. How can the West maintain order and family to begin with, in a culture that has no use for any authority — particularly the ur-authority of fatherhood?p> AGAINST THE ODDS, Phillip Longman, in Foreign Policy , foretells the return to patriarchy , in which increased childbirth and family honor save our civilization from death amid the dissipated leisures of personal prerogative. Longman encompasses the usual suspects, like hip vanguard feminism, in a bigger target — the cultural urge to mortgage future life on the fleet satisfactions of the present. His patriarchal return is the Darwinian necessity of a thriving civilization, in which those who think demography is possible without family edit out genetically their own predilections toward autonomous pleasures: br> /p>
when they look around for fellow secularists and counterculturalists with whom to make common cause, they will find that most of their would-be fellow travelers were quite literally never born.br> The cultural death wish of the non-parents is visited upon the non-children — whereas those who prize family, in size, honor, and achievement, join a female incentive for growth and life to a male incentive for purpose and order. Longman lauds this outcome, even if it’s less than natural: br>
The notion that legitimate children belong to their fathers’ family, and not to their mothers’, which has no basis in biology, gives many men powerful emotional reasons to want children, and to want their children to succeed in passing on their legacy.br> He should add, to prove the point, that civilization has no basis in biology either. The civilizing act (as I have discussed here
A man of faith in a godless age is hitting Americans where it hurts.
Mr. and Mrs. American Spectator Reader, let P.J. O’Rourke talk sense to your kids.
In Britain, defending your property can get you life.
The debacle of this president’s administration is both a cause and a symptom of the decline of American values. Unless Congress impeaches him, that decline will go on unchecked. An eminent jurist surveys the damage and assesses the chances for the recovery of our culture.
It won’t take long for conservatives to scratch this presidential wannabe off their 2008 scorecard.
The American Christmas, like the songs that celebrate it, makes room for everybody under the rainbow. Is that why so many people seem to be hostile to it?
Was the President done in by the economy, or by the politics of the economy?