Some of you will be familiar with the term hormesis. It represents the concept that toxins or stressors in sub-fatal dosages facilitate a healing response that results in vitality superior to the level observed before the negative stimulation. For instance, the stress and discomfort of vigorous exercise is thought to strengthen the body as surely as pleasant leisure weakens it. There is some conjecture that societies are also subject to the effects of hormesis. A thought we’ll return to momentarilly.
Africa represents one of humanity’s most pressing concerns. Not just for Western civilization–which represents the balance of my interest in the topic–but the whole of mankind. For that is the maternity ward of history’s most unimaginable ongoing gestation. Already far beyond its native capacity to sustain, another three billion mouths are projected to emerge this century. A huge portion of which will seek escape. Four billion Africans–desperate, starving, and bloodied–will be disgorged upon the Earth. A figure equivalent to the entire global population of just 40 years prior.
It would be untrue to characterize this existential crisis as “predictable,” as that would imply some meager foresight. This being an unnecessary faculty, as simple vision of the present would suffice. Africa’s lead elements are breaking on Europe now. And they are nothing to what will come behind.
But this is ground already well tilled. It awaits only the inevitable deluge of tears. But what’s interesting–to future Chinese anthropologists if no one else–is that it is Western peoples alone who have assiduously seeded the African eggsac. Mestizos, Asians, Jews, or Arabs: none seem remotely invested in turning millions of hungry Africans into billions. Not even Africa’s diaspora would have so primly cultivated this crop from its own pocket. Only great wealth and the determination to lavish it on ruinous pieties could accomplish this act of multiplication. And only Western Civilization was capable of producing both.
I thought a commenter at Nick Steves’ place captured the notion succinctly. Dave1941 said:
Civilization is dysgenic in every time and place. It enables too many idiots to survive, reproduce, and eventually take over and ruin civilization.
The good news is that barbarism must be eugenic, or humans would have devolved into non-sentient apes long ago.
I don’t know that I necessarily agree, but I know he can bring ample evidence to bear. That the contemporary West is frantically dysgenic is a matter of observation, not debate. I imagine most of our neighbors would proudly laud the engines of this phenomenon as progress. Stripping the wealth, and resulting family capacity, from productive citizens to subsidize the heedless fertility of the left flank seems a core tenet of the modern state. Though we are no longer content to expand the least capable and most violent domestically. It’s now a global crusade. And polite democratic society will succumb to the math as surely as the Titanic’s bulkheads. Then we will see if the machinery of dysgenics can float.
If both Dave and demographers are correct, there’s a pale horse approaching the West. His name that sits on him is Sorrow, and Hormesis follows with him.