Diversity Musings

Paleo Retiree writes:


In case you were in any doubt about what our state religion now is: A too-big-to-fail bank has just ordered me, a random ATM user, to “unite behind diversity.” If I’ve got this right, I’m not being urged by a fellow citizen to stand up to the Powers That Be in order to demand our rights. Instead, I’ve been commanded by a top-down soul-crushing part of the Plutocracy to stand WITH the Powers That Be in order to stifle dissent and impose a trendy and unrealistic ideal. Hard to imagine why I wouldn’t want to get on board with that particular program …

FWIW, I enjoy living a life in the genuinely diverse style. I’m based in Greenwich Village, which is bursting with gays and Jews, and which is located in NYC, where only 45% of inhabitants are white. Unlike our betters, though, I’d never dream of imposing diversity on others. (I don’t see my preference for leading a life in the “diverse” style as anything but a personal taste.) Why? Well, for one thing, I recognize that many people prefer to live among people more or less like themselves. Whereas the champions of diversity-as-an ideal see any indication of irregularity as suspicious, if not damning, I see clumping-together as what most humans normally tend to do. Why fight it?

For another, managing a “diverse”-type life is a lot of trouble. Every day involves numerous micro-negotiations that simply don’t crop up when you’re among people with whom you share background, language, assumptions and (who knows?) ethnicity. There can be payoffs — my “diverse” life is a pretty darned entertaining and interesting one. But the cost of it, sheesh … Leading the “diverse” life can be extremely wearying; it can really grate on the nerves even if you’re reasonably sophisticated and prosperous. I can only imagine how dispiriting the diverse life can get to be if you don’t enjoy a bit of spare money, space and time. (If, in other words, you don’t have the resources it takes to enjoy the benefits of diversity.) Why impose additional annoyances on people whose lives are already challenging enough?

For a third: I’m just not into forcing utopian ideals on others. Let people live their lives as they choose to the extent that’s possible (and they’re able), you know? And if, in the normal course of events, one neighborhood (or workplace, or province, or country) winds up being more Asian, and another more black, and another more Mexican, and another more white — and another more gay, and another more straight, and another more female, and another more male — why stress about it? Let people sort their lives out as they see fit. Besides, our rulers really do (IMHO) have more urgent things to give their attention to than bulldozing their way into the arrangements we’ve made for ourselves and disrupting them in the name of a silly ideal that people will be laughing about in a decade or two. Ahhhh — banking — choo!

My final thought about diversity this morning is a defense of diversity itself. If every neighborhood/workplace/country needs to be broken into and then re-made into some bean-counting bureaucrat’s idea of “diverse,” isn’t the overall result going to be about as un-diverse as can be imagined? Isn’t the final result, in fact, inevitably going to be something we might reasonably call “uniformity”?

Besides, if you throw all the ingredients in your fridge into the food processor, what you wind up with is inedibility itself. I’d much prefer that life resemble a tasty meal — a banquet of different (maybe even “diverse”) flavors, textures and experiences — than a pot of uniform green/brown sludge.

Short version: It’s possible to enjoy diversity on a personal level and dislike the way our elites are making use of the concept. It’s also possible — heck, it’s even easy — to use the cause of genuine diversity to undermine our elites’ diversity campaign. (“Diversity”-imposers are like “tolerance”-fanatics — giant targets just begging to be shot full of holes.)

I’m reminded of a pair of cartoons by the great Léon Krier:

krier_cartoon01 krier_cartoon02I found these cartoons in this wonderful book.


Curious to hear what others are making of our masters’ determination to use the ideal of “diversity” to crush real diversity.

About Paleo Retiree

Onetime media flunky and movie buff and very glad to have left that mess behind. Formerly Michael Blowhard of the cultureblog 2Blowhards.com. Now a rootless parasite and bon vivant on a quest to find the perfectly-crafted artisanal cocktail.
This entry was posted in Personal reflections, Politics and Economics and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

20 Responses to Diversity Musings

  1. epiminondas says:

    Rio de Janeiro is also diverse. In fact, they even go to great lengths to wall off the diversity when it gets a bit too “enriching”.


    • I’d imagine that in most cases, the more diverse a place becomes, the more important walls become.


    • Callowman says:

      Wish I could find the ref, but I’m reminded of a recent blog post whose sadly unremembered author noted that the people who are most likely to make a big stink about diversity are least likely to appreciate the leaders who have succeeded best in diversely populated countries, namely Ian Smith, Lee Kuan Yew and a third fine example who I’ve forgotten.


  2. There’s another angle I didn’t touch on in the posting: when diversity is imposed, resentment is engendered. The world is full of enough resentment already. Why pursue policies that are destined to create more of it?

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Days of Broken Arrows says:

    …and a final final point left unsaid: Anyone who preaches diversity should put their zip code up for public scrutiny so we know if they practice what they preach. We are what we do, not what we say.

    Rumor has it that “anti-racist author and educator” Tim Wise, who is white, lives in a 97 percent white area. So in what galaxy does he get to preach to me, who lives in a region with 40 percent minorities and a reasonably strong gay population?

    What this comes down to is moral preening by the upper classes. Back in the 1980s, this was tolerable because it was new and the country’s demographic was more skewed towards whites and gays had little media presence. But these days it’s patronizing and/or hypocritical.


  4. dearieme says:

    All diversities are not created equal.


  5. dearieme says:

    Heard in The City: “We are a pretty diverse team – one from Peterhouse, one from Emma, one from Caius and one from Oxford.”


    • That’s going to take some explaining. All of them references to … colleges? Prep schools?


      • mrtallhk says:

        dearieme is quoting someone who’s mixing categories: the first three are Cambridge U colleges, while ‘Oxford’ is in reference to the university itself. Must have been a Cambridge man making the comment.


  6. LemmusLemmus says:

    ‘If every neighborhood/workplace/country needs to be broken into and then re-made into some bean-counting bureaucrat’s idea of “diverse,” isn’t the overall result going to be about as un-diverse as can be imagined? Isn’t the final result, in fact, inevitably going to be something we might reasonably call “uniformity”?’

    Yeah, as Tyler Cowen has pointed out, cities have become more alike by becoming more diverse. You can now find Chinese restaurants in both Bordeaux and Dallas, etc. “Internal diversity” vs. “external diversity” is a useful way of putting it. (Those may be Cowen’s terms.)


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