42 thoughts on “Open Thread – Brown Pundits”

  1. What accounts for second generation south Asian children who are socialists? Kshma Sawant or Pramilla Jaypal?

    1. Brahmins are virtue signallers par excellence. How could they pass up the opportunity to suffer for the Americans too?

  2. both of these people were born and raised in their formative years in india.

    but there is a general trend, and i think it has to do with assimilation into the managerial professional class.

  3. Isn’t there a left-leaning socialist South Asian diaspora element in some places outside the subcontinent like the Indo-Trinidadian American Bhaskar Sunkara, founder of Jacobin.

    I know desis in Guyana, South Africa etc. have a long history of socialist tendencies.

    But I don’t think many of the American desis are tied to these groups (who had more working class immigrant roots). It seems like the more well-off American desis turning left are more about assimilating into upper class “champagne socialist” culture to fit in rather than some of the socialist of either the homeland, or the indentured servant/coolie labor diaspora.

    Even the Canadians/UK desis seem to lean more labour left than the American desis.

    1. Is he actually Indo-Trinidadian though, or the son of Indian immigrants who were in Trinidad on the way to the US? I thought he was Punjabi or something. “Sunkara” doesn’t sound like an Indo-Caribbean surname.

      1. “I was born in June 1989. My parents had come to the us from Trinidad about a year before I was born. My mother’s family, originally indentured labourers from Punjab and Bihar, had been on the island since the 19th century, but my father had arrived there from Andhra Pradesh as a young man, training as a doctor.”


        The “Sunkara” surname would have come from his Andhra father.

    2. Diaspora mimic the regions from which they come from in India. So gujju are more right, Marathi throws up both communist and right, N-Indians mostly right. Bengalis, Mallu more communist, S-Indians more ethnic oriented than ideologically oriented

      So on so forth.

  4. Interesting parallel also with desis being well off and left-wing and Jewish Americans being well off and left-wing.
    I don’t know how comparable the situations are, to what extent the left-wing movement is transnational or carried from abroad or if the newfound leftism is homegrown after coming of age in their new country (Jews in NYC earliest last century were socialist and working class), but it’s interesting how some immigrant groups seemed to have turned left/socialist more easily (e.g. On the east coast, Irish, Italians etc. seemed to be less open to socialist/labor left, stateside than the Jewish population there, at least in the long term, it seems like Irish and Italians remained more conservative/right up to today, and contemporary desis seem also to be more open to left/labour than the Chinese Americans even though all these groups had an immigrant history as workers from abroad, some technical, some less skilled).

    1. skinnyfat gene is more epigenetic due to starvation periods. S Asia currently has worse malnutrition than much of subsaharan africa, so I doubt it will get much better.
      I think if you controlled for diet and exercise, desis would, even in light of all of the epigenetic stuff, be a lot better. In my parents generation, walking around the block after dinner is exercise. They maybe eat like 40-50g protein, if they are lucky, a day. Some of our relatives in India even less, including some wealthy ones.

      My dad is a weird exception. He runs decently well and still does a good number of pull ups and push ups at close to 60.

    2. ” At baseline, mean BMI was 24.6 kg/m2 among South Asians, 22.6 kg/m2 among Chinese, 26.1 kg/m2 among blacks, and 26.1 kg/m2 among non-Hispanic whites. Researchers found that incident diabetes risk, adjusted for age, sex, sociodemographic characteristics, and BMI, was significantly higher for South Asians (20.8/1,000 person-years; HR 3.40), blacks (16.3/1,000; 1.99), and Chinese (9.3/1,000; 1.87), compared with non-Hispanic whites (9.5/1,000). The BMI cutoff value at which diabetes incidence was equivalent to BMI 30 kg/m2 for non-Hispanic whites was estimated at 24 kg/m2 for South Asians, 25 kg/m2 for Chinese, and 26 kg/m2 for blacks”


      I remember Razib talking with Dr Omar regarding a related topic here:

      He mentioned more efficient mitochondrias as a possible genetic cause out of several possible ones in the same category. Considering that the cutoff risk for Chinese is not too dissimilar, would it make sense to say that this mitochondrial adaptation possibly dates back to a common east Eurasian period, or in other words, it is a general mtDNA M thing or am I making too many leaps here?

      1. too many leaps. There are interactions between nuclear transcribed proteins and mitchondrial ones. Functionally, things aren’t so black and white.
        Also, he is positing it is one of many factors. What I will discuss next is only talking about averages. Please don’t respond with comments about some Potahari Gujjar Pind with 7’0 average 300lb wrestler mythologies.

        I think the right answer has more to do with body composition. I think it has to do with lean body mass to fat ratio specifically. BMI does not take into account lean body mass.

        S Asians tend to have very small bones as do E Asians compared to other races. So for them to hit the same BMI (really just a weight to height modified ratio), they have to have a lot more mass. That can either be muscle or fat. Usually, most people don’t do heavy strength training and never reach peak muscularity (somewhere between 20-40lbs of muscle mass above post puberty healthy body weight depending on genetics).

        The end result is proportionally a lot more fat mass at the SAME BMI in the smaller boned ethnic groups. Wrist and ankle size are the fast and dirty ways to compute frame size. Casey Butt has a pretty good calculator he created based on research with tons of natural bodybuilders about what someone’s max lean body mass potential is. There is also evidence put there that for adjusted BMI, S Asians have more fat than Whites and Blacks. This makes sense

        1. S Asians have smaller bones and less muscle building potential
        2. They eat less protein and exercise less on average so not even reaching close to their potential that even have
        3. They get to the same BMI despite less bone and muscle mass (lean body mass) and thus so it by getting fat. End result is more diabetes and hypertension.

        Btw, I’m vegetarian and am getting closer to maxing my LBM. I have a tiny frame for my height. I am 5’9 3/8th with 6.25 inch wrists and 8 inch ankles, yet I built a decent 42 inch chest, 15 in arms, 25.5 inch legs, 15.5 inch neck, and have a 31.5 inch waist at 170lbs. I started at 125lbs (was below my post puberty optimal weight because of undereating).

        I have strength trained for years. I have a 250 (pause bench, not the fucking BS bounce or half rep people do, despite long arms), 335 squat (atg, hip crease below knee crease and not BS half squat) and 415 DL. I can do 65 push ups and 21 deadhang chin over bar pull ups, so I’m relatively strong at calisthenics too. I help a lot of S Asian guys, if they ask for it. Sadly, too few do and most don’t listen and do the same inefficient chest and arms bro splits.
        Any browns who would like advice on how to maximize their gains, post your email. We can get into communication. I want to help change our stereotype of unfit beta males who simultaneously manage to be terrorist rapists, go figure.

        Jai Shree Ameen. May the Sky Father smile upon you. May the River Mother Bless You


        1. Your post explains why south Asians generally have a higher than healthy BMI range. Furthermore, you have mentioned that east and south Asians also tend to have a smaller frame overall- it seems that this would make me even more curious the notion that it could be traced back to a common east Eurasian selection; or alternatively you could argue for convergent evolution to oppose this.
          If this was indeed due to a common east Eurasian selection, then the next question is whether it was driven by mitochondrion type and if so by what extent- like was the mitochondrion type first selected to be efficient and then the physiological adaptations followed; or perhaps both of these selections went hand in hand in many steps.

          Of course, the latter part only comes into discussion if there was a common east Eurasian selection in question. If this is convergent evolution then that needn’t even be taken into consideration. After all, the black risk value isn’t very far away from the east Asian risk value either. So I might just be looking for patterns where there are none.

          AFAIK mtDNA M isn’t strongly strongly/positively correlated with power athletes, meanwhile the most strongly power correlated west Eurasian mtDNA is W (peaks among Finns I think, but it is also found among western south Asians). Your mtDNA is U8b’c iirc, and U is also over-represented among power athletes (though not to the same extent as W is) so I would expect you to have better gains than most south Asians because your mitochondria allow you the type of energy production needed in training.

  5. https://www.dawn.com/news/1517438/what-the-story-of-medini-rai-the-man-who-once-took-on-babur-tells-us-about-biography-and-history

    “The most astonishing of Eaton’s biographical sketches is of the Maratha noblewoman, Tarabai (1675-1761) and her vigorously political eight-decade-long life that spanned an entire epoch of Maratha history – from the rise of the Maratha kingdom under Shivaji in 1674 to its disruption at the battle of Panipat in 1761. Married to Shivaji’s second son, Rajaram, Tarabai, at different times in her career personally directed Maratha forces to challenge the Mughals not just in the Deccan but deep into north India. Hers was the first instance of this deliberate aggressive strategy that eventually expanded to establish the Maratha confederacy over much of the subcontinent above the Vindhyas.”

    1. Bollywood will not be Bollywood if it ever resorts to understatement.

      That said, Indians seem to be getting obsessed with their history. Sword and Sandal flicks (or should we call them Talwar and Turban dramas?) keep rolling in. There has been a deluge of historical dramas in recent years.

      Nothing wrong as long as they broadly stick to history. But some of these movies are embarrassingly cringe the way they maul history (Jodha Akbar for e.g.)

      1. most historical american films are cringe too. i think all historical films aimed at the audience of people who claim that history have to lie a lot to make them palatable.

  6. @razib (or anyone else)

    Have you read Dominion by Tom Holland?
    What are your thoughts on him in general?

  7. Looks like I spent a couple of minutes responding to a comment that no longer exists, which in turn means than my reply also doesn’t exist. Oh well.

    1. Yeah it got deleted for whatever reason. Let me summarize it

      Mitchondrial gene products interact a lot with nuclear ones for mitchondrial proper functioning. It isn’t as black and white. Mitchondria efficiency could be a factor, but I think here is a much more obvious one.

      BMI is an imperfect measurement. Lean body mass: fat ratio is far superior. Lean body mass is a combination of all things non fat mass (primarily muscle, bone, and water). S Asians and E Asians tend to have small bone structures. Bone structure size is directly correlated with muscle building potential. So for an average S or E Asians to be the same BMI as an average SSA or White European, they would likely make up for the difference in less skeletal and skeletal muscle mass and water (muscle is largely water) with fat.

      So a S Asian with the same BMI as a White European for example, would likley be far less healthy. Additionally, with a smaller bone structure, there is literally less space to store the excess fat so it goes centrally, contributing to metabolic syndrome.

      The other factor is that S Asians tend to have less muscle mass and more fat mass EVEN RELATIVE to their potential. S Asians strength train less frequently and eat a carbohydrate heavy diet relative to their counterparts. The end result is even less muscle mass and more fat mass. Therefore, the average S Asian with the same BMI as an average White European, will have FAR more fat mass and central adiposity.

      I have been trying to change the tide. I am educating S Asians more on strength training and how to count macros to include more protein in the diet. I am vegetarian and I have strength trained for years. I went from 125 to 170 lbs, staying about around 15% body fat. I can pause bench 250 (not BS half rep touch and go), squat 335 (ATG knee crease below hip crease not BS half reps), and deadlift 415. I can do 65 push ups and 21 dead hang pull ups (chin over bar not BS half reps). I did this with methodological dieting and training, albeit far from ideal.

      For any S Asians interested in learning how to diet and strength train, just email me. I want to change the stereotype from skinny fat beta males who also happen to be terrorist rapists (go figure) to something better.

      1. It seems that we are very much entirely in agreement then. So instead of the mtDNA being the director, the selection for the type of mitochondria most probably works hand in hand with the selection for body type (the latter would be determined or at the very least planned by the nuclear DNA, and the selection for mtDNA specifications would work in conjunction with selection for the physiological traits that correspond to DNA in the nucleus).

        S Asians and E Asians tend to have a similar bone structure as per what you have said, so I was wondering if this commonality goes back to the common east Eurasians or is this just relatively recent convergent evolution.

      2. Btw what is your definition of South Asian?
        Are Pashtuns/Afghans also south asian?

        Aren’t different south asian groups biologically too different from each other?

        1. East of the Indus West of the Brahmaputra South of the Himalayas Sri Lanka and to the North of it

        2. Yes they are. But there is a trend of three body types: too skinny, skinny fat (normal BMI but high body fat percentage), and obese. This is true in all groups I have seen in America, including the famed “martial” descended ones. There are more athletes in those groups but not by much and there is greater emphasis culturally for sports and meat eating and high dairy consumption in those groups, say relative to mine.

          We sort of agree. I am open to the hypothesis of different mitchondria. However, you seen more sure in your degree of certitude. I think there are lower hanging fruit for sure, such as environmental factors I alluded to. I think that is huge and needs to be controlled for, namely Lean Body Mass to Fat Mass ratios in the context of particular macronutrient (mostly protein content controlling for calories) and activity profiles. Also, epigentic changes such as those seen with developmental programming are also vital.

          I used to work in a basic science diabetes lab. I did work with pregnant wistar rats. Two groups, control and low protein diet (same calories). Both were fed this diet and had offspring through pregnancy and weaning. Once weaning finished, mothers sacrificed. All rats then fed same diet.
          The ones descended from low protein mothers had much higher rates of obesity and diabetes. We visualized their pancreatic islets and they were smaller. We also assessed for insulin resistance at various life stages and it was higher.

          Similar things were seen in human populations. Two Swedish villages I believe. One had famine and one didn’t. No famine in future generations. Grandkids of famine stricken villagers ended up more obese and diabetic.
          I think lifestyle and epigentic mechanisms are huge. Mitchondria may play a role or may not. Generally, small bones are good for hot climates as a lankier structure promotes better heat dissipation via better surface area to volume ratio. East Africans also tend to be small boned.

          E Asians are an odd hybrid. Smaller boned than Euro white on aversge but with cold adapted limb proportions (large torso to limb length ratio aka squat genetics of peace).
          Granted, these are just trends. Individual exceptions exist. Even ones of individual families and villages.
          Environmental factors, namely diet and exercise are huge.

          1. @thewarlocke
            The environmental aspects that you have described would be driving the mtDNA and the nuclear DNA-based physiological selection over the long term. Selecting for a leaner frame for the tropical conditions, and for more efficient mitochondria when food wasn’t easily available as well- and as you have mentioned, the survivors of a low protein ancestral environment are susceptible to becoming obese more than others.

            East Africans can be especially ectomorphic as well, which means that the south and east Asian thing could just be more recent convergent evolution process of 2 populations independent of each other. I am eager to know more if it was independent or not, perhaps a group will write a paper on the subject in the future.

            I think you are right about the east Asian phenomenon because most of them are a combo of 2 main populations: Amis-like Austronesians from southeast Asia/ southern China (these guys would be the source of slender body proportions) and the more northern cold adapted Devil’s gate cave type of people/neosiberians (Razib has already posted this on gnxp a while back, here is the picture in question https://imgur.com/a/Ys6FLcA). There are people still alive today which represent these 2 types well- the Amis would be, well the Ami people, meanwhile Oroqen people are nearly 100% Devil’s Gate cave-like.

            As far as meat consumption is concerned, it seems that south Indians consume more meat than their more northern and western counterparts, meanwhile northern and western Indians consume more milk. However, Kashmir, HP and Uttrakhand would be an exception to the north Indians consuming less meat trend.

            Here is a different map for the rural populations:

            Haryana and Punjab are the most vegetarian ones, though idk if diaspora follows the same vegetarian trend.

  8. https://imgur.com/gallery/7XOXsU5

    Some progress for the gains for the fellow browns. Remember, I’m a guju jain, supposedly the least martial of the martial lmfao.

    S Asians first need to get out their own heads.

    Jai Shree Ameen. May the Sky Father smile upon you. May the River Mother bless you.

    1. This is idiocy on ABVP’s part, for sure. I am getting some messages on whatsapp that the protests are occurring because the post requires conducting some hindu rituals. it doesn’t wash. if it were really true, why would a practicing muslim accept such a post in the first place. smells like pure politics to me.

    1. Thanks, MMK. I may try to attend although I see that I probably would not be welcomed. Why? Not only because it is an OIT gig than because Indian scholars discuss with western scholars who are not interested in resolving the so-called Aryan issue. There is no one Aryans descendant invited to make his/her case. In sum, Indian scholars will continue chasing their own tail.

Comments are closed.

Brown Pundits