September 7, 2011

Ideal elevation?

Ever since I was a Boy Scout, I've been fascinated by the effects of altitude on a place's climate, vegetation, and human life. When I reread volumes of my 1971 Encyclopedia Britannica, I appreciate that the standard Britannica format is to put the altitude of a place in the first paragraph.

Yet, altitude doesn't come up much in daily thinking, which can cause problems. For example, I knew a man who spent his prime building his retirement dream home at 9,000 feet, but then found that by the time it was finally finished, he was getting on in years and didn't thrive anymore in that thin atmosphere. 

Elevation is an important element in the concept of "Whitopia," a term coined by a black journalist named Rich Benjamin in his genial book Searching for Whitopia: An Improbable Journey to the Heart of White America. Benjamin drove around to various places white people are moving to in out of the way states like Utah and Idaho to discover what white people are up to. He discovered, among other things, that they are up to playing a lot of golf. To burrow deeper into his investigative journalism project, he took up golf. And discovered that golf is awesome. In fact, golfcentric whitopias are pretty cool overall, he found. 

Whitopias tend to be located in the sunny, low humidity inland West.

I think you can divide whitopias into two class categories, by elevation. Elite whitopias like Aspen (7900 feet), Santa Fe (7200), and Telluride (8700) tend to be very high ski resorts. The homes in these elite whitopias tend to be second (or third) homes. For example, I stayed once at my boss's 17,000 square foot house in a highland suburb of Aspen at about 9,000 feet. Personally, I would be leery of buying a house at 9,000 feet, but the kind of people who buy giant homes in Aspen (e.g., my boss's neighbor Chris Evert) tend to have outstanding aerobic capacity. 

Extreme altitude can cause massive health problems. For example, doctors in Leadville, Colorado (10,152 ft.) insist that all pregnant women go down to lower elevations. In Peru and Bolivia, white people have trouble carrying babies to term on the Altiplano relative to Amerindians.

More middle class whitopias like Bend, Oregon (3600 feet), Grand Junction, Colorado (4600), and St. George, Utah (2900) tend to be middling in height. They are often located in the high desert near the base of major mountain ranges, which provides easy access to the highlands for recreation without having to deal with massive snowfalls, and a lot of water for lawns and golf courses in the summer, when temperatures, while warm, are not as insufferable as in low deserts. 

So, has anybody systematically looked at the effects of elevation on real estate?

68 comments:

Son of Brock Landers said...

This is a serious question: are there any 'blacktopias"? I can't think of a black majority city/county/country that is a wonderful destination to live in with the security, outdoor activities, safety and 'good schools' that are found in whitopias. Shucks, there has to be one, right?

Anonymous said...

cf. Sun Valley, Idaho (elevation 5900) and Jackson, Wyoming (el 6200).

With all the sage brush, Sun Valley is practically in the desert.

Anonymous said...

Elevation alone won't be descriptive enough. It looks like you're thinking of increased elevation as being mountainous. There are large swaths of the country that have elevation in the range you described as the lower class whitopea, but have really low real estate values. The pan handle of nebraska (yes that large block on the west side) is 3-5k feet and isn't worth much, no mountains, poor soil, almost entirely white though. Likewise, western South Dakota has a lot of land in the range you describe, a few small mountains in the south west, poor soil, and while largely white, a fair sized indian population. Western North Dakota, Eastern Montana, and Eastern Wyoming are all in the same boat. The latter two having really poor soil, but being closer to moutains. These regions of Wy, Mt, and ND also have coal and oil. This tends to bring up real estate values.

poultry inspector said...

Historically, many Mediterranean settlements had to be on high ground to avoid malaria.

Anonymous said...

Atlanta, Son.

NOTA said...

Altitude lets you split out two otherwise closely-bound variables--how cold the climate is, and how much sun exposure (and thus vitamin D and light to prevent episodes of SAD) you get while living there. At a fixed altitude, going somewhere further from the equator gives you less sun and colder weather. But go up into the mountains a bit, and you'll get cooler temperatures and the same or more sun (more UV, anyway).

Anonymous said...

It's An Improbable Journey to the Heart of White America.

Anonymous said...

are there any 'blacktopias"?

They seem to like Atlanna.

Christopher Paul said...

Blacktopias, hmm... Maybe Barbados? The list of candidates is short, that's for sure.

Anonymous said...

Son of Brock, maybe Bermuda?

Quick search on "Bermuda crime rate" gives you "low but growing," "violent crime at one time almost non-existant," "mostly between gangs."

Anonymous said...

Mexico City at 7,500' and Bogotá at 8,600' both with beautiful mountains and excellent climate must be the next emerging whitopias.

*This is a serious question: are there any 'blacktopias"?*

Yes, there are. Barbados, the Bahamas, Cape Verde, and the island nations around Madagascar have high incomes, high education, low crime, and majority black citizenry.

Anonymous said...

The interesting thing is that black Africa does a lot better when you add a bit of elevation, too. The tropical disease burden goes down, you get grain agriculture instead of rain forest gardening, and much more sophisticated societies start to emerge, as in Ethiopia and Rwanda.

Jack said...

Where should eastern white people move? New Hampshire or Maine, I'm guessing.

agnostic said...

"Historically, many Mediterranean settlements had to be on high ground to avoid malaria."

Winged insects in general are less common at higher altitudes. So lots of common disease vectors are dampened up there.

That's probably one factor behind the better health and looks of people from mountainous places compared to their lowland counterparts, although West Virginia is a notable exception.

Anonymous said...

This gives 'white flight' a whole new meaning. Don't run away; fly up to the sky.

Maybe the future will have sky cities where the the top sections of skyscrapers will be joined by bridges. Streets below will be for 'youth' mobs while the affluent move around the city through elevated bridges among buildings. And maybe flying cars will allow people to avoid the streets below.

dearieme said...

In the British Isles, high altitude = pours with bloody rain, and also = ruddy windy. It's best to live at low altitude, but it's nice to have mountains to look at, particularly if they are to your southwest (so that you are in their rain shadow).

Anonymous said...

Vanillahalla.

Jorge said...

Age has no effect on whether you *thrive* in high altitude, its just genetics. Your friend probably just realized too late he didnt do well at that altitude. 9,000 feet is the threshold at which you can get altitude sickness, but is still quite low and and almost everyone can easily adapt to that altitude. Im surprised your friend had trouble. Thin air makes distances greater and light brighter and more sparkling - in general, half of the beauty of the West is because its generally on a plateau that rarely falls below 4,000 feet and the light in the West is so beautiful.

I once spent two months in Leh, in India, at around 11,500 feet, and never felt quite normal or well. I was in heaven when I got back to about 6,000 feet. I thought it was the altitude, but then I once spent a month in Cuzco, Peru, which I think is at around 10,000 feet if Im not mistaken, and felt wonderful the whole time, so maybe its not about the altitude at all.

Anonymous said...

Hey Steve,
You said...
" In Peru and Bolivia, white people have trouble carrying babies to term on the Altiplano relative to Amerindians."

Do you have a citation for this? My first impulse is to agree, but I'd still like to know your source.
Thanks.

Anonymous said...

Blacktopia?

DETROIT!

Nadaav said...

To answer the question at the end, I'm not sure but I'd guess that the "Strange Maps" blog might have at least an entry or two dedicated to altitude's (or at least topography's) effect on other cultural matters such as real estate.

Even if it doesn't, it's a pretty cool blog: http://bigthink.com/blogs/strange-maps

Marc B said...

"Whitopias tend to be located in the sunny, low humidity inland West."

Low humidity and snowy winters with comfortable summer temps are the draw for European Americans, not the altitude itself. They are similiar to Northern and Western European climates familiar to us since adaptation during hunter-gatherer days than the moist low altitide climes found in most of the Eastern US.

I marvel at the constitution of the frontiersman of mostly Western European descent who settled the "Africa hot" Southern US and Texas. Those early summers must have been a shock to the system prior to electricity.

Kylie said...

"Historically, many Mediterranean settlements had to be on high ground to avoid malaria."

Yes, malaria=mala aria; i.e., "bad air".

Son of Brock Landers said...

Thanks for answers on my blacktopia question commenters, but Atlanta has bad crime and incredibly poor schools as revealed by their mass cheating scandal of this year.

Barbados sounds like a good candidate.

helene edwards said...

are there any 'blacktopias"?

You haven't forgotten Christopher Darden, have you? "If I had it to do over again, I'd live in Berkeley."

Anonymous said...

@Son of Brock Landers

Closest thing to a Blacktopia are the Bahamas. Barbados and Bermuda are all right too.

Anonymous said...

Also, while the Dominican Republic is hardly utopia, by the standards of black nations, it's a veritable paradise. Especially when you consider Haiti is right next door.

I do wonder why some black nations can get their act together while others are pure hell on Earth.

I remember John Derbyshire mentioned how low the level corruption is in the Bahamas. I just don't get why our blacks can't be like the Bahamans. They pretty much share the same ancestry and history of slavery. What's the difference?

Anonymous said...

Random note while we're on the subject of Caribbean blacks:

I found this pic of the Jamaican Prime Minister shaking hands with the President of Brazil:

http://i.imgur.com/egekO.jpg

In Brazil he would be considered white. In America he would call himself black and be able to benefit from Affirmative Action.

I often wonder whether the Spanish/Portuguese method of racial classification is better than our Anglo system.

Anonymous said...

"In Peru and Bolivia, white people have trouble carrying babies to term on the Altiplano relative to Amerindians."

I suspect that a lot of people out there underestimate the speed of evolution. It seems that there were no people at all in the Americas just 15k years ago. And yet some Andean Indians have already had time to adapt to high altitudes. This is every bit as informative as lactose tolerance (man didn't domesticate the cow until 10k - 12k years ago), but one hears about it less.

Anonymous said...

Even with electricity Texas summers are brutal...

Gary in Texas

Anonymous said...

Black people love Atlanta.

Anonymous said...

Extreme altitude can cause massive health problems. For example, doctors in Leadville, Colorado (10,152 ft.) insist that all pregnant women go down to lower elevations. In Peru and Bolivia, white people have trouble carrying babies to term on the Altiplano relative to Amerindians.

How are all those Chinese colonists doing in Tibet?

Anonymous said...

The Highveld of South Africa (at ~6000 feet) has a wonderful, temperate climate. Hardly Whitopia though.
Gilbert Pinfold.

jody said...

i go to leadville every year for that 100 mile race. due to the elevation, in addition to the isolation of the town and being so far away from civilization in general, a few things are a little different up there. one effect is that during the day, 70 degree sun, which is hardly all that intense, can easily burn you. it's bright up there.

almost nobody lives there, but not because of the elevation. most of the mines which employed people in the area 100 years ago, have closed. there are still a few mines but barely enough even for a small town.

due to the elevation and isolation, the degree of light pollution is extremely low, and the night sky is hard to describe. most people, even if they live in a rural area, haven't seen such a clear, ink black, almost purple black canvas of shining stars. their locations are so clear and you can see hundreds, maybe thousands of faint stars you have never noticed before, and they create this patina on the sky. there is the appearance of depth. you can tell some stars are behind other stars and further away. a planetarium really can't recreate the effect of staring up at the sky on a moonless night in leadville.

we usually stay in a condo in vail, which we use as our base of operations. most of the second houses in vail (i assume they are rich people's second houses) are nicer than most people's main house. i also sometimes stay in colorado springs, where my friend has a house near cheyenne mountain. he works at the US olympic training center and i'm there occassionally.

what i've found is that there's a really big difference between 7000 feet and 12000 feet, when you start trying to do athletic stuff. i realized the so called advantage that the denver broncos have because their stadium is at 5000 feet, is not much of an advantage. it would have to be higher to make a significant difference.

Anonymous said...

"Low humidity and snowy winters with comfortable summer temps are the draw for European Americans, not the altitude itself. They are similiar to Northern and Western European climates familiar to us since adaptation during hunter-gatherer days than the moist low altitide climes found in most of the Eastern US."

Aren't Ireland and Britain pretty humid given all the rain and mist?

Maya said...

Son of Brock Landers,

I don't have the stats, only my unreliable memories of growing up at the time when I didn't care about race and thus didn't pay close attention.

However, during my pre-teen/teen years in the northern suburbs of Chicago (mid 90s through early 2000s), Evanston, Illinois (where Northwestern University is located) was considered the place where the rich blacks lived. Evanston was clean, quiet, historic, expensive and had a lot going on culturally thanks to Northwestern. It's also on the shores of Lake Michigan with some beautiful public beaches. I remember it being kind of divided in 3 parts: university, smaller white and larger black. White people lived on the very shore with some grand views while black people lived close enough to the beaches to walk there easily (a great advantage since it's near impossible to find parking). We competed against Evanston High School, and I never saw a single white student there. The school wasn't considered bad. It was generally understood that the white lake view dwelling Evanstoners were so ungodly rich that they didn't see a reason not to pay private school tuition. It was also generally understood that the majority of us, future programmers, teachers, nurses and dentists would never be able to afford a decent house anywhere in Evanston.

Some years of section 8 housing reshufflement later... My little sister who just graduated from my old high school last year says that Evanston High has a pretty bad reputation among the neighboring schools. The place looks much dirtier. I keep hearing about this or that professional black family that had moved out of Evanston (quite often to Naperville). And as a small anecdote, I was driving through Evanston while visiting my parents about 2 months ago, and I passed many people with rags on their heads, men walking around shirtless with combs stuck in their afros (wasn't that in stile, like 15 years ago?), young women with several kids hanging on them and the like.

So... I think I might have been familiar with a blacktopia once, but it's gone now.

Anonymous said...

Moab, UT is awesome!

Anonymous said...

Park City, Utah Elevation 7,000 ft. We stayed in a town home at about 8,000 ft in Empire Pass this summer. The altitude can kick your butt. Did a lot of hiking along the mid-mountain trail. Saw some moose and elk...great place!

Anonymous said...

"...much more sophisticated societies began to emerge such as Ethiopia and Rwanda"

Is this a joke? Ethiopia? Live-aid Ethiopia? Rwanda? Genocidal, machete-hacking Rwanda?

As for "blacktopias" like the Bahamas and Barbados, I saw plenty of poverty and litter when I vacationed there. And there is no shortage of blacks from these countries living in places like Canada and Britain. Probably the USA too. In any case the total population of both nations is less then a million. Given the hundreds of millions of blacks worldwide, that hardly says very much at all.

Get Off My Lawn! said...

I don't think this elevation connection applies to the East. The higher elevation parts of the East - which, granted, aren't very high - are indeed almost all white, but nobody's moving there.

It is true, though, that the wealthier suburbs of large East Coast cities tend to be on the northern and western sides of the metro areas, which are also the higher, cooler, snowier sides, as anyone who's spent a winter in NYC, Phila, or DC can report. The exceptions are suburbs on the water, which of course is also a place white people love to be.

chris said...

Just returned from the Himalayas (18.5 to be exact). Saw a lot of Tibetans (immigrated to the Nepal side 50 years ago or so) and SWPLs is all

Hunsdon said...

Jody said:

most people, even if they live in a rural area, haven't seen such a clear, ink black, almost purple black canvas of shining stars. their locations are so clear and you can see hundreds, maybe thousands of faint stars you have never noticed before, and they create this patina on the sky. there is the appearance of depth. you can tell some stars are behind other stars and further away.

Hunsdon said:

I had a friend who lived in Leadville part of the year, trapping, but that's beside the point. I've seen night skies like you describe, only I saw them in Mongolia, a couple hundred miles outside the capital, Ulaan Bataar, at a national park where they were reintroducing the Prizhevalskii horse. Also a couple hundred miles from the nearest electrical light.

It was like no sky I had ever seen before. It was purplish and orange and colors there aren't words to describe. Near stars, far stars, here stars, there stars. It made me feel like I'd been cheated out of something important my whole life, just looking up at that night sky.

Reg Cæsar said...

This is the ideal elevation-- in the world's whitest republic.

Low humidity and snowy winters with comfortable summer temps are the draw for European Americans, not the altitude itself. --Marc B

Buffalo!

.

Anonymous said...

Wealthy Black areas go down quickly because of regression to mean among the youth. Also, a lot of wealthy blacks have underclass friends and relatives who come over.

Even high affluent and professional Prince George's county has four times the white American homicide rate.

Anonymous said...

@Chris

Great photos!

Reg Cæsar said...

Is this a joke? Ethiopia? Live-aid Ethiopia?

Most of Ethiopia was untouched by famine in the 1980s. Don't get your news from washed-up pop stars.

Also, they stopped sacrificing virgins a thousand years before the Scandinavians did, so on that measure of "advance" they look good. (Of course, in both cases, that was due to outside factors, i.e., Jesus.)

Anthony said...

In the East Bay (area code 510), altitude pretty closely tracks social class, though the specific levels vary north to south. The Oakland flatlands are worse than the Hayward flatlands, but both cities get better as you go uphill. If you're in a bad neighborhood in 510, go uphill; it will get better. Unless you pass as Mexican - the Mexican neighborhoods are sometimes downhill of black neighborhoods.

agnostic said...

"And yet some Andean Indians have already had time to adapt to high altitudes."

It's not quite as strong as lactose tolerance.

There was a review article within the last 5 years on high-alt adaptation: Andeans and Tibetans still had problems like erythrocytosis, just less than people from low-alt places did.

The East African highlanders looked totally normal, though, presumably because they've been living that high up for longer than the other two groups have.

Sword said...

On the topic of Blacktopias:

Here is the CIA World factbook data on GDP/capita for various countries. I have included down to Gabon, the country in subsaharan Africa with the 2nd highest value.

Rank Country Intl. $
1 Qatar 179,000
2 Liechtenstein 141,100
3 Luxembourg 82,600
— Bermuda 69,900
4 Singapore 62,100
— Jersey 57,000
5 Norway 54,600
6 Brunei 51,600
7 United Arab Emirates 49,600
8 Kuwait 48,900
9 United States 47,200
10 Andorra 46,700

*The extended top-10 includes 5 oil states, and 6 small sub-national areas or ministates. One of them, Bermuda, is 55% African-Bermudian, 65% black.

— Hong Kong 45,900
— Guernsey 44,600
— Cayman Islands 43,800
— Gibraltar 43,000
11 Switzerland 42,600
12 Australia 41,000
13 Austria 40,400
14 Bahrain 40,300
14 Netherlands 40,300
16 Canada 39,400
17 Sweden 39,100
— Virgin Islands, British 38,500
18 Iceland 38,300
19 Belgium 37,800
20 Ireland 37,300

In the extended top-10-to20 there are 6 more ministates, one oil state, and 8 entities which are almost totally white. 2 are small carib islands with black majorities. Of the extended top-20, 12 have English as a official language.

21 Denmark 36,600
21 Equatorial Guinea 36,600
— Greenland 36,500
23 San Marino 36,200
24 Germany 35,700
24 Taiwan 35,700
— Falkland Islands 35,400
26 Finland 35,400
— Isle of Man 35,000
27 United Kingdom 34,800
28 Japan 34,000
29 France 33,100
— Macau 33,000
— Faroe Islands 32,900
30 Italy 30,500
So, the extended 21-30 features 6 ministates/entities, and 2 With English official language. At spot #21, we have the first continental african black state, with a GDP/capita exceeding that if United Kingdom by 5%. However, that small oil state has a very uneven income structure - 70% under the UN poverty limit of 2$/day. Also, it is one of the worst when it comes to personal freedoms of any kind, so it does not count as a blacktopia.

31 Korea, South 30,000
31 Monaco 30,000
33 Israel 29,800
34 Greece 29,600
35 Spain 29,400
36 Bahamas, The 28,700
37 Slovenia 28,200
38 New Zealand 27,700
39 Czech Republic 25,600
39 Malta 25,600
39 Oman 25,600

So, the extended top31-39 1 afro-carib nation, 1 ministate, and 1 oil state. That nation of the cognitive elite tribe comes in at an impressive #33 spot.

42 Saudi Arabia 24,200
43 Seychelles 23,200
44 Portugal 23,000
45 Slovakia 22,000
— Aruba 21,800
46 Barbados 21,800
47 Trinidad and Tobago 21,200
48 Cyprus 21,000
49 Estonia 19,100
50 Hungary 18,800
50 Poland 18,800

So, the extended top42-50 includes 3 afro-carib states, and 1 african island nation. 1 Oil state, it is interesting to note that even among oil states, small population correlates with high GDP/capita.

— French Polynesia 18,000
52 Croatia 17,400
53 Antigua and Barbuda 16,400
— Puerto Rico 16,300
54 Lithuania 16,000
55 Russia 15,900
— Sint Maarten 15,400
56 Chile 15,400
— Curaçao 15,000
— New Caledonia 15,000
— Guam[4][6] 14,800
57 Argentina 14,700
57 Latvia 14,700
57 Malaysia 14,700
— Virgin Islands, U.S.
60 Gabon 14,500

So, the extended top52-60 contain 3afro-carib entities, 1 more carib entities, and the #2 among continental black african countries, Gabon. Gabon, as its neighbor Guinea, is an oil state. It is home to over 40 different ethnic groups, with a lot of intermarriage. A population of 1.5 million and a population density of 5.5 peoples/km2 (quite low, between New Mexico and South Dakota) gives reasonable space to all inhabitants.

So there. The top places which have a majority population of african heritage are either small islands with tourism and offshore banking, or oil-rich states. How that is to work for a USA population of 30 million+ is beyond me.

Vilko said...

*This is a serious question: are there any 'blacktopias"?*

Yes, there are. Barbados, the Bahamas, Cape Verde, and the island nations around Madagascar have high incomes, high education, low crime, and majority black citizenry.

Mauritius is one of those island nations around Madagascar. It's almost three quarter Asian (52% Hindu, 17% Indian Muslim, about 3% Chinese) and blacks are definitely the poorest community. Hardly a blacktopia. Neighboring La Réunion, a French island, has a roughly similar ethnic composition, but with a sizable white minority. As everywhere else, blacks are at the bottom of the social scale. In Madagascar itself the Hova (of South-East Asian descent, with some African admixture) largely dominate the other tribes (whose African genetic admixture is noticeably larger).

The only blacktopias are where black people live among (or get tax money from) tolerant, law-abiding, productive non-blacks. The French Antilles, for instance.

John Mansfield said...

One of the more unusual places I've lived, also where my wife grew up, is Los Alamos, New Mexico, home of the atomic bomb. Being a town of 18,000 where half the adults have science and engineering PhDs is one strong factor to the feel of the place, of course, but its location at 7300 ft. with peaks going above 10,000 to the north and west, and the expanse of the Rio Grande valley below to the east is a huge part of it too. Someone once asked me what living in Los Alamos was like, and I started "A bit over a million years ago, a giant volcano erupted." After I had gone on about geology for a bit, my wife nudged me, and said the person might be more interested in what Los Alamos was like after people arrived.

Anonymous said...


I often wonder whether the Spanish/Portuguese method of racial classification is better than our Anglo system.


It's better in the medium term, but worse in the short term, and ultimately fatal in the (very) long term.

It's worse in the short term because they could have kept things segregated and the whites (or "whites" if you prefer) could have lived better than they otherwise did.

But it's better in the medium term (measured in centuries) because everybody is accustomed to the mild forms of discrimination and too busy trying to get a racial leg up on everyone else for anti-white coalition to form, which results in whites being valued rather than resented (nothing like the sort of reflexive antiwhite hostility in Brazil that you find among American blacks).

In the long run, of course, it spells racial death. It's debatable how horrible that might be, but mass multiracialism all but assures it.

Silver

Truth said...

"I often wonder whether the Spanish/Portuguese method of racial classification is better than our Anglo system."

Would that include your sister/daughter's sex life?

Anonymous said...

This is a serious question: are there any 'blacktopias"? I can't think of a black majority city/county/country that is a wonderful destination to live in with the security, outdoor activities, safety and 'good schools' that are found in whitopias. Shucks, there has to be one, right?

A 'blacktopia' would be a part of a majority black country to which blacks free encroaching diversity and in which they enjoy blacks company and lead untrammeled black lives. Blacks aren't any pressure to flee what little diversity exists in their own countries so the comparison doesn't really apply.

But if we take 'blacktopia' to mean prosperous overwhelmingly black zones, you might be surprised how many there are.

Go to skyscrapercity.com and check out the pics in the Africa section (there's millions of 'em). For a Sailer reader, my guess would be that you'd be shocked how nice the better off parts of Luanda (Angola) or Maputo (Mozambique) are (and there are many, many more similar examples).

Silver

Martin said...

Well we're movin on up,
To the east side.
To a deluxe apartment in the sky.
Movin on up
To the east side.
We finally got a piece of the pie.

neil craig said...

Under the British Empire there were substantial white settlement in the Highlands of Kenya (indeed there still are) because it was high enough to be cool and malaria free. Equally in India those who could afford it took hilidays and sent the family to Simla for the summer because of its elevation. However in both cases it is not elevation per se that matters but that it is cooler and malaria free.

Anonymous said...

How are all those Chinese colonists doing in Tibet?

Probably the same as the Russian colonists did in Armenia and Georgia.

Anonymous said...

Most of Ethiopia was untouched by famine in the 1980s. Don't get your news from washed-up pop stars.

And the famine was largely artificial, due to Russian (communist) interference.

Also, they stopped sacrificing virgins a thousand years before the Scandinavians did, so on that measure of "advance" they look good. (Of course, in both cases, that was due to outside factors, i.e., Jesus.)

And they started sacrificing witches, wizards, heretics, and blasphemers instead.

Anonymous said...

I don't know if the concept of "blacktopia" really applies. Utopia-seeking is really more of a white (and maybe Asian) thing. The actual behavior of blacks bears this out; they tend to follow the (white) money rather than try to find a specific utopia.

Steve Sailer said...

Most major cities have at least one very nice all black neighborhood. For example, Baldwin Hills, seven miles south of Beverly Hills, is 99% black, and every home is impeccably maintained and landscaped. They're on a north-facing hillside with a beautiful view looking north to the Hollywood Hills, with the sun at their backs.

I reviewed a book by William Julius Wilson for VDARE that discussed all the strategies that one nice black neighborhood in Chicago uses to stay that way (i.e., to keep poor blacks out): lots of block parties, usually with a racial pride theme, with lots of pressure on everybody to mow their lawn, keep their house painted, etc. Just like the nice white sectioned profiled in the book, but with more mention of Shaka Zulu and the like in organizing themes for the block parties.

Kylie said...

@jody and Hunsdon,

One unforeseen benefit of a beautiful night sky is that it can elicit some of the most beautiful descriptions I have ever read.

Thanks to you both.

Crawfurdmuir said...

I was recently at Lake Tahoe, surface elevation 6,225 feet. Although both are on the shore and share a common elevation, an obvious economic difference exists between King's Beach, California, on one side of the state line at the north end of the lake, and just across it, at Incline Village, Nevada. King's Beach is a town of small cabins and trailer courts; Incline Village is one of mansions.

According to Wikipedia, the median household income in King's Beach as of the 2000 census was $35,507. The median household income in Incline Village was $69,447. Famous residents of Incline Village include Warren Buffett, Michael Milken, and Larry Ellison; the median price of a single family house in Incline Village is $845,000.

Clearly, elevation can have nothing to do with this difference. What does is the absence of a Nevada state income tax. Persons who are wealthy enough to own two or more residences can rather easily choose to buy or build one in a place that minimizes their tax burden for purposes of legal domicile. The Tax Foundation reports that Nevada residents on average work until April 2 every year to pay their total tax bill, ten days before national Tax Freedom Day (April 12).

Tax Foundation information on Colorado, where Mr. Sailer's examples Aspen and Telluride are located, indicates that Colorado, although it levies every major tax, does so at very low levels. Spending discipline through the state's Taxpayer Bill of Rights has helped restrain taxation. The state's tax burden is below the national average, and Coloradans work until April 8 to pay their total tax bills, four days before national Tax Freedom Day. The Tax Foundation reports that New Mexico, where Mr. Sailer's other example, Santa Fe, is located, is also a low-tax jurisdiction; like Colorado, its tax burden has fallen in recent years, and New Mexico residents work until March 31 to pay their total tax bills, twelve days before national Tax Freedom Day.

alonzo portfolio said...

@Crawfordsmuir:

Granted Nevada's lack of an income tax is a draw for some. But you know, I used to visit the King's Beach area often, in the '70's and
'80's, when the Nevada side was relatively unknown. The impression I got was that KB, and the west side of the lake generally, was kind of a hippie/doper haven. Nevada, by contrast, has always been known as a place where mere posession can lead to serious jail time. So I wonder if the (sub)-cultural differences between the two areas might better explain the income and real estate differentials.

ben tillman said...

Aren't Ireland and Britain pretty humid given all the rain and mist?

All the rain in Britain? Yeah, some parts of England get a lot of rain, but London gets 23 inches. Dallas gets 37, Fort Worth gets 25, and Tucson gets 12.

ben tillman said...

"I often wonder whether the Spanish/Portuguese method of racial classification is better than our Anglo system."

Check out Carl Degler's book Neither Black nor White.

Marc B said...

"Aren't Ireland and Britain pretty humid given all the rain and mist?"

Yes, but those places are a at a higher latitude and coastal, so they have a Marine climate. Temperatures rarely exceed 80 degrees for long periods during summers. Humidity doesn't provide the same type of unbearable discomfort in a climate where the temperatures mostly stay of above freezing during winter and below sweltering in summer.

Chris said...

Love this quote from the Whitopia website:

"It sounds like a recipe for a riot: an inquisitive black writer journeying into some of the most segregated neighborhoods in the country."

Yeah, cause everyone's the same and trashing your own community is a natural response to having to interact with other people.

Anonymous said...

Black utopias
Notwithstanding the overall material poverty of life for Blacks on plots of land in the South, the overall comparison with much of Northern ghetto life makes the "pigs and chickens and garden" world lots lots better in many Black families.
A larger issue is whether in terms of human evolution, Blacks adapt to off-land , population concentration environments as well as Whites. The urban scene offers lots better medical intercession for illnesses; but the rural settings possibly, on balance, were more wellness friendly for many Blacks?