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January 23, 2007


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Will Baird

with the exception of German-Americans, who had a slight preference not to marry other German-Americans.

Yeah us! Oh. Wait. The German part was a recent acquisition. From Germany. Grandma Elisabeth was warbooty. erm. That doesn't sound good/right! damn.

The more I read about 'us' (as in my family) the more I find we were just plain frackin weird (by other people's standards): we lived in Tennessee (Elks Valley) since 1790s; had a huge spread (more than a section); maintained that as an integrated piece at least until the Civil War; were double plus pro UNION (fought, died for it); had an unofficial policy of 'walk about' around age 20 with returning with a wife to spawn, uh settle down; wife was 80+% of the time a new immigrant (irish were popular, but french, scottish, italians, and others were abducted, erm, married); and we've been trolling for trouble since 1683 in the country. Oh, and nativism has been a very rare thing too in the family.

As you might guess if a kid looks like his/her grandparents much it's a miracle for a Baird. Yeah, exogamy!

Oh yeah, on my wife's side Darth Babushka is ethnic 'Russian' and my wife's high cheeks didn't come from a European source. lol.

PS Thanx for the belated happy birthday, Carlos.


This is something of a tangent-and probably a stupid question to begin with- but what would a complete counterculture look like, and how would it differ from the evangelical bush-supporter lifestyle?


Hey Will! one of the interesting empirical findings of this sort of research is that people from mixed backgrounds in ethnically open societies are much more prone to intermarry than their pure-wool counterparts. Sounds like your family got in on the ground floor.

There is a question about Russian-Ukrainian intermarriage I have as a result of my recent reading -- what's the status of those groups in Ukraine? There seems to be a sharp urban/rural divide both in Russia and in Ukraine about these post-Soviet types.

K-W, I'd expect a full counterculture to look a little like the old segregated communities in the US, a little like the current exclusionary religious communities in the US, and a little like the current gated communities in the US. Birth to earth.

All the parts are currently there, but I don't think many people, even extreme wingnuts, would be willing to live in the whole package. They might want to go out for Thai, see an occasional R-rated movie, be liked by minorities, et cetera. They want Babylon available as an occasional buffet. Even Charles Krauthammer goes to the video store.

Note how this is different from the militia folk, who have their own -- if related -- pathologies.

Will Baird

Hey Will! one of the interesting empirical findings of this sort of research is that people from mixed backgrounds in ethnically open societies are much more prone to intermarry than their pure-wool counterparts. Sounds like your family got in on the ground floor.

Amen to that. I was looking at some pictures of my great-great grandparents. They and I look nada alike. You would NEVER guess that Lewis Baird was my patrilineal ancestor. Or hsi wife, Tessy (who was French(!))

The Ukrainian-Russian intermarriage thing is a bit...interesting. My wife is Ukrainian. That's not because she doesn't have a Russian ancestor: Darth Babushka is 100% Russian and then some. It seems that the local culture is that whatever nationality your father is you are. So, technically, I'm Irish and so is Avrora, because the 12th century Bairds came over from Ireland to Scotland. So, Lyuda's Ukrainian, not Irish. I suspect that there's a fair amount of mixing in certain areas: the east of Ukraine and Crimea. Western Ukraine is a different story.

That cultural belief is rather odd. The way that you get defined as a Russian citizen is if your mother is a Russian passport holder. We have a family we know that the father is a Russian passport holder, the mother while ethnicly Russian holds a Kyrgyrzstan passport, and the children hold American passports. The Russians won't acknowledge the kids as, well, Russians. bizarro.

Noel Maurer

Interesting discussion, Carlos and Doug. I have ... ah, um, er, uh ... an obvious personal interest. But I'll admit to being confused about the main point. Is Doug worried that Americans are going to start slaughtering each other? I mean ... uh. (Words fail me.) Like, well, Will has a fascinating family history, but at the end of the day they're all just white people to most Americans. So where was the discussion going?

Anyway, regarding my personal interest, it's probably June in Cambridge, we think, with a big shindig in St. Joseph to follow in a year. I'll certainly keep you posted.




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