Sonntag, 31. Januar 2016

Political Parties of Germany: Present and Past

Update: since the 2017 general election, here is an updated table of the German parties as well as the historical results since 1871. 

This post is divided into two parts. On the top you will find an overview of the largest six German parties (plus the NPD as the largest far-right party, to give a comparison), on the bottom you will find a "timeline" of the most important political parties since the first (unified) German election in 1871. The width of a bar indicates the success in the previous general election, the arrows show party mergers and party splits.

Europe of Regions: 2016 Brexit update

This map shows the "Europe of Regions" that is one proposed future of the EU. It assumes a possible Federal Republic of Europe that has abolished the old national borders and introduced regions, in accordance with the principle of subsidiarity.

The picture also shows the (co-)official languages and capitals of each region, the overseas possessions of Europe, and implies a voting system of proportional representation and well as some kind of right-wing revolution leading to remigration of foreigners into their home countries and designated international cities. There is also an implied steering towards Russia, and tenser relations to the US and especially Turkey.


International Phonetic Alphabet: The Most Comprehensive Table on the Internet

The IPA is an alphabet that is used to write down the pronunciation of any language. Needless to say, there are hundreds of possible sounds if you are really diligent in classifying them. This table is the most comprehensive one available on the Internet, as it shows you all possible sounds that can be represented by the IPA, using both official and inofficial characters as well as diacritics.


(I'm sorry for some graphical glitches that happened while converting it into a picture file.)

Overview: Identitarian Parties in Western Countries and their Success

As the title says, this table shows an overview of Identitarian parties in Western countries and how they performed in elections and polls as of June 2016 (I changed the date of this post to January, but you can ignore that).

What is Identitarian? That's the first question I had to ask myself. Well, it is what the media and political "scientists" often call right-wing populist. I wondered, what do they actually have in common? In the end, I came up with three things that constitute the Identitarian ideology:
  1. Nationalism, be it ethnic nationalism (e.g., Germany), cultural nationalism (e.g., Switzerland), or white nationalism (mainly United States). Nationalists want a state for their people, and the Identitarian variant wants to keep their nations homogeneous.
  2. Anti-Globalism. The main political divide today seems to be between Globalists (both left-wing and right-wing) and Anti-Globalists (both left-wing and right-wing). Anti-Globalists do not want to have a world ruled by the UN and dubious NGOs, and they want to prevent the merger of people and cultures and the resulting loss of global diversity.
  3. Anti-Immigration. This is the most obvious and concrete demand of the Identitarians. It also concludes the aim to have a homogeneous state for one's people and the unwillingness to submit to the globalist new world order. 
The table includes "centrist" parties (i.e., big people's parties that happened to fall into disgrace with the global elite, such as PiS in Poland), "moderate" parties (i.e., parties of the new right, which are usually called right-wing populist), and "radical" parties (i.e., true neo-nazis and fascists).

I am glad about every comment that helps me fill in the "???" gaps or gives me updates on polls and elections.

Timeline of Operating System

This graph shows a timeline of all major operating systems. The colours and line styles carry a meaning; the legend is included in the picture. The XLSX to PDF to PNG conversion took its toll on the image quality, but it's the informational content that's important, right? Please enjoy and share.

Donnerstag, 7. Januar 2016

World Map of Religions

The last map referring to my essay on identities is this map of religions.

Two notes: First, some of the religions (Alawism, Alevism, Druze faith etc.) are often classified as sub-groups of Islam, but sometimes classified as older gnostic religions dissimulating as Islam. Dr. Michael Izady, whose great maps I used for the Middle East, argues for the classification as pre-Islamic religions who need to dissimulate as Muslims to avoid persecution.

Second, in Asia, it is often impossible to map the religions as it is usual for people to follow two or more religions (such as folk Shinto and Buddhism in Japan or Confucianism, Taoism, and Chinese folk religion in China). Therefore, some religions "share" a colour. China is based on this recent map. In North Korea, the largest religion seems to be Korean folk religion, closely followed by Cheondoism (a syncretic religion based on Korean religion and Confucianism). In South Korea, I included all provinces with Christianity as largest religion as Protestant. In all of these provinces, Protestantism was larger than Catholicism, however, in some of these Buddhism was larger than Protestantism alone.

Generally, the level of detail varies. For some countries, only province-level information or only rough estimates are available. For other countries, religion data is available down to every village.

Download/Fullsize (external link)

World Map of Civilizations

Following the essay about identities and the timeline of civilizations, this world map shows the civilizations of the world today. The classification is largely based on Huntington's "Clash of Civilizations" (e.g. a separation of Western, Orthodox and Latin American civilization and a separation of Chinese and Japanese civilization). I added a few more distinctions, such as the separation of the "Buddhist civilization" into a Tibeto-Mongolian and an Indochinese one or the separation of the "Islamic civilization" into a Sunnitic-Arabian one an a Shiitic-Persian one (which is relevant in today's conflicts in the Middle East).

The colour of the inner border of a country indicates the alignment of the government (e.g. the Chinese government trying to dominate the Muslim Uyghur and the Buddhist Tibetan cultures within its borders or parts of the West European governments promoting Islam as an equally influencial culture as classical Western culture).

Download/Fullsize (external link)

World Map of Languages

This language map is another appendix to my earlier essay and the family tree of languages. It doesn't show single languages however (that would be impossible, as there are 6000-7000 languages, and just mapping official language would be to simplified), but language families or language phyla instead. The colours imply a possible relation on a lower level, called macrofamilies. However, these are highly speculative.

As the map shows, Indo-European languages are spoken in large parts of our planet. Other important language families include the Niger-Congo, Sino-Tibetan, Afroasiatic, and Austronesian languages. The largest degree of diversity is found in New Guinea, where linguists have found a large number of isolated languages or small language families, as well as the Trans-New Guinea phylum with an astounding number of different languages as well.

Download/Fullsize (external link)

World Map of Races

Following this essay and (approximately) this classification of races, I have created a world map of human races today. There are hardly any such maps to be found today (most were created in the age of imperialism in the 19th and early 20th century).

Three notes: First, the distinction between the lighter and darker Caucasians is not easy to make. There are gradual shifts from Scandinavia to the Arab peninsula and it is impossible to draw a clear border. For this map, I have included all regions as Xantochroi where there is a prevalence of light eyes of at least 10% of the population. I know this is not scientific at all, but if you want to argue about who is white or not, please read this post first.
Second, there is a recent theory that there was a first wave of settlement in the Americas even before the current Native Americans. These "Paleoamericans" were probably related to the larger Australoid race and are often identified with the Fuegian natives. However, this is not an established theory yet.
Third, I have made a distinction between the Pygmies of Africa and other Black peoples. There is no convincing genetic evidence that they are something completely different (although there seems to have been an early separation), but it might make sense when considering that race is a social construct anyway (as in: it's impossible to make scientifically sound racial categories).
So, as always regarding race, please take this map with a grain of salt - although I believe it is superior to all the other maps you might find on the Internet, which are often more than 100 years old.

Download/Fullsize (external link)

World Map of Ideologies

I recently posted an essay about the importance of identities for politics and conflicts in our globalized world. One of the five identities was ideology. People subscribe to various ideologies and not all of them are represented in the government. Another problem is that the opinions of individuals are not somehow measurable and often don't fit into any classical ideological terms.

This map therefore shows the official state ideology. For democracies, this often is (classical!) liberalism (as in, freedom of speech and other ideas of classical liberalism are guaranteed in the constitution) or other moderate ideologies (conservatism, social democracy).

Download/Fullsize (external link)

Value-Based Classification of Political Ideologies

In this post, I have presented a classification system for political parties in the Europe of today. In short, it included the 3 classical blocs (Socialist, Conservative, Liberal), but added an axis of identitarian vs. anti-identitarian, which as I explained is essentially the modern meaning of right-wing and left-wing in the European context.

This "political circle" shows a more general classification of political ideologies. I identified four major values: equality and social justice, freedom and individuality, tradition and reaction, as well as strength and health. These correspond approximately to the four big ideologies of socialism, liberalism, conservatism, and nationalism: all of those emerging in the context of the French revolution and competing in the West until liberalism "wins" in 1990 (after the world wars and the cold war).

The centre of the circle represents the politically moderate forces, while the outside represents various extreme ideologies. For example, on the end of the "strength" axis you'll find National Socialism (anti-liberal, anti-communist, progressive/anti-traditional) with its militaristic inclination and the ideas of racial hygiene and social darwinism. On the end of the "equality" axis you'll find Marxist Communism (anti-liberal, anti-national, progressive/anti-traditional) with the basic idea that there should be no classes or nations anymore. Between them, you'll find Juche (the North Korean ideology which is a mix of communism and nationalism, including racial supremacism), Strasserism (the left-wing, more socialist wing of the early NSDAP), and Stalinism (the more nationalist and militaristic version of Marxism). The more moderate version of the strength-equality combination would be the Swedish folkhemmet, which included social democracy and the welfare state, but also nationalism and euthanasia.

Family Tree of Religions

Again following my earlier essay, this post includes a historical family tree of religions. Religions can be classified in a number of different ways, including geography (Middle Eastern, Iranian, Indian, Chinese, ...) or fundamental concepts (Abrahamic, Dharmic, Taoic, ...). This mindmap shows from which other believes the religions were split or on which they were originally based.

There is of course a lot of speculation for some of them, especially syncretic or ethnic religions, so there might be some errors. The "{...}" categories are just categories (instead of an original religion from which the other ones derived), and the arrows show influences between religions (e.g. Zoroastrianism influencing early Judaism).


Family Tree of Languages

This post, as another appendix to the identities essay, shows the languages and language families of the world and their possible family tree (meaning, how the language might have historically separated assuming only one original human language in prehistoric times from which all contemporary languages ultimately derive).

Please note that only the outmost level of the mindmap shows generally accepted or at least probable language relations or families. Two languages separated by a comma are languages that could be related, but this relationship is not established yet, while two languages joined with a hyphen are an accepted mini-family.

The distinction of the 3 fundamental branches "Austral, Boreal, Khoisan" was taken from British linguist Roger Blench.


Timeline of Civilizations

This table shows a timeline of civilizations and cultures. You can see which culture was dominating which geographical area at what time. It also shows that nearly all civilizations today are derived from the 6 origins of civilization: Mesopotamia/Sumer, Egypt, Indus Valley, China, Mexico/Mesoamerica, and Norte Chico (Andes). If a region has two colours, the upper one indicates the dominant and/or more recent culture.


Modern Classification of Human Races

After my post about identity conflicts, I need to explain the concepts a bit more in depth. This post shows a "modern" classification of human races. As I explained in the last post, I know that the concept of race is not very scientific (although not completely irrelevant), so please take this classification with a grain of salt. I have deliberately included some extinct hominids (such as the Neanderthal), as there is evidence for a genetic flow towards the modern human, meaning reproduction was possible and the term race (instead of species) is therefore reasonable.


Dienstag, 5. Januar 2016

Identities in a Globalized World: Introduction

Scroll to the bottom for a summary

Before globalization began, most people would grow up in homogenous societies and mostly meet people of their own kind. Meeting someone "different" could mean meeting a Protestant when oneself was Catholic, and the only people of other cultures the average Englishman ever met probably was an Irishman and a Frenchman (how exotic!).

Now, in a globalized world, we are being confronted with people of other identities all the time: through migrations, through international business and expat work, through travelling, through the Internet and other media. Globalization also means that people try to find an identity for themselves and to self-categorize themselves in a diverse world.

1. What are Identities?

I don't want to talk about any tumblr/sjw "identities" such as "I'm a demisexual able-bodied trans wolfkin" or other special snowflake tags. In the real world, there are five main sources of identity:

  • Race or Ethnicity
  • Culture or Civilization (Kulturkreis)
  • Language
  • Religion or Faith
  • Political Ideology
(These are ordered from fixed to changeable.)

These five, together with a common history, also make up the essence of a nation in the classical sense of the word.

"Race" is a difficult topic nowadays. In some countries, such as the US and the UK, race is a normal part of the census and everyday speech. In other countries, such as France or Germany, race is said to be unscientific and non-existant - instead, one could at most speak of ethnicities. In fact, race is a social construct, in the sense that of course there are no clear "borders" between human populations that divide them into race, neither in terms of looks nor in terms of genetics. For example, even in the heyday of scientific racism, there was no consensus where to put the Indians: Caucasian? Australoid? Veddoid? Are only Dravidians Australoid and Indo-Aryans Caucasion? Is there any Mongoloid admixture? Are Indians a separate race? This shows the fundamental subjectivity when dividing mankind into races.

In that sense: yes, race is a social construct. But in the same way that human races are a social construct, dog races are also a social construct. That doesn't mean we should abolish the concept completely. Race is clearly a concept that is still relevant in our lives, both to categorize other people and ourselves. (On a side note: larger racial categories such as Caucasian, Black, and Mongoloid are still used in forensics, pharmacy, and medicine. Also, we should finally stop with the "race is only skin deep" meme, as it is much more than that.)

The importance of cultures was first formulated, as far as I know, in Samuel Huntington's "Clash of Civilizations" (1992/1996). He identified some basic civilizations/cultures such as Western civilization and its brothers, the Orthodox and Latin American ones, the Islamic culture, the Indian or Hindu one, and the East Asian or Chinese one. He also suggested that a Black African cultural (not racial) identity could emerge. These civilizations are difficult to define and separate. Often, they correspond with religious lines, but not always. For example, both the Latin American, Western, Black African, and Philippine civilizations follow Western branches of Christianity (i.e. Catholic, Anglican, or Protestant), but that does not mean that the Philippines and some Catholic African countries are culturally similar. On the other hand, the Chinese civilization includes many religions (Buddhism, Taoism, Confucianism, Chinese folk religion, Christianity, and even Islam in case of the Hui Chinese).

Language has probably been the most obvious source of identity in the 19th and 20th century. Nationalism in Europe was not because of any "racial" lines (as in, fairer, more Germanic-looking Frenchmen from the North of France would feel unrelated to darker, more Mediterranean-looking Frenchmen from the South of France). Nationalism in Europe was because of linguistic lines. Suddenly, after centuries of German/Austrian rule, many Czech people began to promote speaking Czech again (it was reduced to a declining farmers' language before the age of nationalism), and when the Protestant North of Germany united with the Catholic South of Germany, it was because they spoke the same language - even though Catholic Belgium and Protestant Netherlands just split a few decades earlier (different churches, but same language). There were Pan-Slavic, Pan-Germanic, and Pan-Romanic movements, and the main reason Russia entered the First World War to support Serbia was Pan-Slavism. Today, language is still a source of identity, for example in the cases of Catalonian, Basque and Breton nationalism.

Religion is an obvious source of identity and many wars have been fought about it. If someone is a Jew, a Christian, or a Muslim might not matter so much to a convinced atheist, but it matters a lot to the faithful. Widespread anti-immigration sentiments in Europe today are not so much about ethnicity or race (this is only true for the far right), but about the justified fear that the formerly half-Christian-half-unreligious continent could become Muslim in a few decades.

The last source of identity is political ideology. A communist or a libertarian might not care much about any of the other identities, but may feel close to someone who shares his ideology. A working-class Marxist might feel closer to workers from the other side of the world that to the bourgeoisie of his own country. Of course, the political ideology someone has might change a few times in his life, and many people do not really subscribe to any fixed ideology. Nevertheless, and just as with religion, it matters both for the hardliners of any ideology, and for those who want to hear nothing about it.

2. Identities Lead to Conflicts

Identities lead to conflicts, as they make people form groups and identify outsiders. This is not necessarily the fault of any of these sources of identity, as we wouldn't have one united mankind if we all spoke the same language and had the same religion and so on. People always identify with a group, for example the family or tribe in more primitive societies. Conflicts can include war, civil war, terrorism, hate crimes, oppression, genocide, linguicide, ethnic or religious cleansing, discrimination, ghettoization, deportation, and so on - but also peaceful separations such as the independence of the Black and Christian South Sudan from the Arab and Muslim (North) Sudan.

Examples for racial conflicts would be South Africa during apartheid (oppression of Blacks) and Rhodesia (civil war leading to the expulsion and murder of the white population), or South Africa now (a genocide against the white Afrikaaners being in preparation by the ruling black supremacists according to GenocideWatch) and the US now (worsening race relations during the last Obama term according to surveys, probably because of the whole George Zimmerman/Travon Martin and BLM mumbo jumbo).

The prime example for cultural conflicts is the Yugoslavian war, where Western civilization (Croats), Orthodox civilization (Serbs), and Islamic civilization (Bosniaks) were fighting against each other.

Regarding language, we could interpret the language-based nationalism leading to the First World War as a relevant conflict, or the discussions about the Flemish/Walloon relations in Belgium today.

For religion, it is very easy to find examples: the Islamic expansion and following Reconquista and Crusades, the 30 Years War, the separation of Catholic Belgium from the (mostly) Protestant Netherlands, Hindu nationalists prosecuting Christians and Muslims in India, the Israel-Palestine conflict, and today's Sunni vs. Shia conflict in the Middle East as well as the Muslim vs. non-Muslim tensions in Europe today.

Ideology leads to small conflicts on a personal scale the whole time (I guess most people have had a heated discussion about politics at least once - you wouldn't do the same with languages, as in "my language is better than yours and here are the reasons"). On a large scale, there was the Second World War (Liberal democratic USA and UK as well as Communist Russia vs. Fascist Italy and Germany as well as Traditionalist Japan) and of course the Cold War between the United States and the Soviet Union.

3. How to Solve Identity Conflicts

There are three main ideas how to solve these conflicts that may arise when people of different identities have to interact with each other.

1. Separation of the identitarian groups.  An example would be the ethnopluralism concept of the New Right. People who like this approach tend to support Nationalism or at least the existence of homogeneous national states. Politically, this has now become limited to the right-wing (or actually, parties who favour nationalism are now called right-wing, even if they fight against capitalism or support a liberal society). According to them, diversity should be preserved on a global scale by separating different peoples, as mixing them would lead to a destruction of diversity in the long term.

2. Mixing of the identitarian groups and promotion of tolerance. An example would be the multiculturalist "melting pot" ideas of today that have become very popular since the 1960s in the West. Supporters of this approach tend to support internationalism. According to them, diversity should come to every country in the form of different ethnicities, religions, cultures, and languages living together in one place. The states are administrative units rather than the home of a certain people. This approach is usually categorized as left-wing.

3. Dissolution or destruction of the identitarian groups and the creation of a global "identity". This globalist idea includes the promotion of "one language, one religion, one mixed race worldwide" in opposition to the multikulti variant which wants "many languages, many religions, many races, but mixed together everywhere" and the nationalist idea of "one language, one religion, one race in each country, but the right to an own country for each of them". Supporters of the globalist approach tend to support transnationalism and the destruction of diversity (even if they would never word it like this). This approach can be categorized as (n)either left-wing or right-wing and may also be also criticized from both sides.

4. Implications for Politics

In European or Western politics, the left/right paradigm has actually become a anti-identitarian/identitarian paradigm. Identitarian parties are constantly categorized as "right-wing populist" or "far right", sometimes rightly so and sometimes not. Classical left/right dichotomies such as socialism vs. capitalism, moral relativism vs. religious piousness, personal freedom vs. obeying authority, democracy vs. monarchy, progress vs. reaction, or man as a fallen angel vs. man as a rising beast have been abolished for the new anti-identitarian vs. identitarian opposition.

A party that stands for the welfare state and for LGBT rights is left-wing, isn't it? No so fast: if it opposes immigration or is "islamophobic", it is suddenly a "right-wing populist" party (at least in the terminology of European journalists and politicians). In the same sense, other parties have moved to the left. The CDU, Germany's ruling party (headed by Angela Merkel) used to be the most right-wing party in the parliament. It opposes socialism and left-wing economical ideas, takes the lion's share of corporate political donations, and it is hesitant to accept gay marriage or legalize abortions. Now, a recent survey (12/2015) showed that the party is for the first time viewed as left of the political centre. The economic and social standpoints did not fundamentally change, but Merkel did invite millions of immigrants from the Middle East and Africa in 2015 - is that the reason the party is now suddenly deemed left-wing?. The rightmost party in the same survey is promoting a socialist welfare state and opposes American foreign policy. Why is it right-wing? Probably because it wants to halt all immigration and is staunchly nationalist (an ideology that was originally left-wing).

There are 9 resulting positions for parties to occupy: a party can have anti-identitarian, neutral (or post-identitarian), or pro-identitarian attitudes, and for each of these there are the 3 classical political categories which can be broadly described as socialist, conservative, and liberal.

1. Collectivistic & revolutionary (~ socialist):

Anti-Identitarian parties include the socialist or communist parties of most European countries, which are economically leftist/anti-capitalistic, and at the same time support mass immigration. Just think of the British Labour party importing their future electorate from 3rd world countries via mass immigration (this really happened and is no tinfoil hat theory).

A "neutral" socialist or collectivistic party would promote the welfare state or even communism and oppose nationalism. At the same time, they would not attack the traditions of their country (e.g. the church or the national symbols) and they would by critical of immigration (not such much because of a desire for racial purity or identitarian homogeneousness, but rather because this would lower wages of the working class). An example could be the social democratic parties of the first half of 20th century - since approximately the 1970s most of them have become anti-identitarian. It would also include some East European socialist and communist parties which support international solidarity, but also maintain some healthy patriotism. An example could be the Slovakian social democrats, who are a member of the Socialist International, but also oppose Muslim immigration to their country after seeing how it damages the identities of Western nations.

Identitarian parties of this type include fascist or national socialist parties that oppose any kind of immigration and multiculturalism and at the same time want a welfare state like classical left-wing parties do or even want to abolish capitalism. A moderate example could be the Front National of France, radical examples could be the National Democratic Party of Germany and the British National Party.

2. Value-oriented & preserving (~ conservative):

On the anti-identitarian side of the political axis, one could classify the Green parties of many Western European countries. They often have Maoist roots (e.g. the German Greens) and reject the traditional values of the Christian West, but they are conservative or even reactionary regarding their own values (e.g. they're against nuclear power, against GMOs, against cars, have a fear of modern technology, a preference for homemade, regional products and a nostalgic view of the past in the sense of a c. 1900 century Sweden directly out of the Astrid Lindgren's books, i.e. they are emotionally conservative). These parties were the first to come up with multiculturalism and the idea that immigration should not be limited and immigrants should not be forced to integrate into the host society but preserve their foreign cultures.

The "neutral" (in terms of identitarianism) parties are often former conservative parties: a good example could be the Christian Democratic Union of Germany, which used to be a conservative party before Merkel came into power and is now letting in millions of unqualified immigrants - probably not with the ultimate wish to dissolve the German nation, but rather with a harmless or naive attitude of "it might be good for the economy" and "we need to show we're good people".

Identitarian parties of the conservative kind have basically taken over the old positions of the now cuckservative parties. Examples include PiS ruling in Poland, Victor Orban's party in Hungary, the Sweden Democrats, or the young Alternative für Deutschland. They promote traditional values and oppose multiculturalism or mass immigration. One might also put Vladimir Putin into this category.

3. Individualistic & natural state oriented (~ liberal, not necessarily in the American sense):

Here, anti-identitarian parties also want to establish a multicultural utopia free of hate and are often similar to the Green parties, but more progressive in terms of technology and less restrictive in terms of economy. An example could be the Pirate parties, which have made a turn to the "left" and now want to abolish nationalism and borders as well as the dominance of Western culture within Western nations. At the same time, they fight against surveillance and the power of intellectual property right owners and sometimes argue for a small state. Furthermore, these parties are liberal in the social sense (e.g. for the equal treatment of LGBT people, men and women, citizens and non-citizens, ...).

The "neutral" position is again occupied by formerly right-wing liberal parties or libertarian parties. They are against restrictions in the economy, for low taxes, and for freedom in society (again, think of LGBT etc.). They argue for small states and free trade, and consequently also for free migration. These people believe in a global capitalistic system, in which personal freedom (the far right might sometimes call it degeneracy) is promoted and nations or identities are just an obstacle for people's natural right to the pursuit of happiness (e.g. Africans moving to the West) or firms' natural right of paying low wages in accordance to the resulting oversupply of workers. An example could be the Libertarian Party of the US or the billionaire George Soros who said about Hungarian president Orban: "His plan treats the protection of national borders as the objective and the refugees as an obstacle. Our plan treats the protection of refugees as the objective and national borders as the obstacle" (quoted from an e-mail statement of Soros to Bloomberg, 10/2015).

The identitarian liberal position is quite rare: the prime example would be the Dutch politician Geert Wilders and his Freedom Party (PVV). The Austrian Freedom Party (FPÖ) as well as the Russian Liberal Democrats are not actually liberal, but promote conservative (and according to some political scientists even fascist) ideas. Back to the PVV: they stand for personal freedom and a free society, and they fear that this society will cease to exist due to Muslim and other 3rd world immigration. Islam's values are very similar to that of Neo-Nazis and thus it is actually surprising that many anti-identitarians and leftists oppose the latter, but somehow support and defend the former. The identitarian liberals love the freedom in the West, both in society and economy, and want to defend it from the traditionalist and quasi-fascist values of Islam and other anti-liberal foreign cultures.


Montag, 4. Januar 2016

What does "White People" even mean?

The term "White People" does not have a good definition, that's a fact. The US census includes everyone who is of European or Middle Eastern or North African origin, the UK census only includes Europeans, on the Internet you'll find anything from "Italians/Spaniards/Slavs are not white" to "Iranians are white".  In the 19th century, Englishmen came up with the term and were excluding everyone except themselves as non-White (Irish, Germans, even Swedes were said to be "swarthy"). Jews can identify themselves as White or non-White, depending on what is more beneficial in any situation. The whole thing is ridiculous.

I think a compromise of the definitions would be: white is who is racially Caucasian and of Christian background (i.e. not Muslim or Jewish, but atheist is ok). This would result in the following peoples being "white", and I believe this corresponds to the intuitive labelling many people do.

Chaos in the Middle East: who's friends with whom?

The situation in the Middle East is very complex. On the one hand, there are some typical Middle Eastern feuds such as Sunnis vs. Shias, on the other hand, you also have some proxy wars such as NATO vs. Russia in Syria.

The table shows how each of the Middle East war participants and supporters are aligned, for example how they are viewing the Islamic State or the Syrian government.

While not perfect, 3 bloc can be outlined:

  • the Shia Bloc with the Syrian an Iraqi governments, militarily supported by Iran, Russia, and the Lebanese Hezbollah
  • the Islamic State/Caliphate, which is supported by Saudi-Arabia, Qatar, and probably also Turkey (although none of these countries - all best friends of the West! - want to make it official and probably all also feel that they are playing with fire)
  • the US-backed blocked consisting of the so-called moderate rebels and the USA as well as its other Western supporters and Israel.

The poort Assyrians and Kurds are mainly on their own and fight for survival.

Comparison of Operating Systems

This table compares the features of currently developed operating systems that are targetted on desktop computers or mobile devices. The comparison includes:

  • Microsoft Windows (both desktop and mobile)
  • Apple Systems (OS X and iOS)
  • Linux-based Google systems (Chrome OS and Android)
  • Ubuntu Linux (both desktop and mobile)
  • other Linux systems (both desktop, e.g. Fedora, OpenSuse, and Linux Mint, and mobile, e.g. Firefox OS, webOS, Tizen, Sailfish OS, mer with Plasma Active, and the Android-based CyanogenMod)
  • QNX (less important on the desktop, but used on phones in the form of BlackBerry 10)
  • Amiga OS (yes it still exists, desktop only)
  • RISC OS (used to be an important British operating system, desktop only)
  • eComStation (the successor of OS/2, desktop only)
  • Oracle Solaris (desktop only)
  • FreeBSD (available for desktops as PC-BSD or GhostBSD)
  • Haiku (the de facto successor of BeOS, although a separate development, desktop only)
 The winners on the desktop PC are 1. Mac OS X, 2. GNU/Linux, and 3. Windows 10; the winners on mobile systems such as smartphones are 1. CyanogenMod, 2. Android, 3. iOS. The comparison of mobile systems also include the number of available apps: when looking only at the real system features, there is a tie on first place of Windows 10 Mobile, BlackBerry 10, and CyanogenMod. Worst mobile system is Tizen, worst desktop system is AmigaOS.

When merging the scores from mobile and desktop systems, the top 3 winners are 1. Apple systems (OS X, iOS), 2. Microsoft Windows, 3. GNU/Linux (including the average score of all 7 non-Android but Linux-based mobile systems). Google follows on rank 4.

The table also includes an overview of other operating systems and their target devices.

If you spot any errors, please leave a comment.

Download/Fullsize (external link)

Comparison of PIM Clients

PIM means "Personal Information Manager" and it typically includes an e-mail client as well as a calendar, contacts management and often also tasks and notes. Some of these can be completely online (think of Google Mail/Calendar/Tasks/Contacts/Keep or the Microsoft Live Mail/Calendar/Contacts/Tasks/...), while some of them are offline programs running on a desktop computer and connecting to a server.

I have compared the 5 most important PIM clients:
  • Microsoft Outlook, the number 1 in the corporate market
  • Kontact, a program of the KDE software collection
  • Evolution, another Linux program that belongs to the Gnome desktop environment
  • Apple's OS X applications
  • and Mozilla Thunderbird, which heavily relies on addons for most of its features.
The winners of the feature comparison are Kontact, Evolution, Outlook, Apple, and then Thunderbird. Thunderbird and Outlook actually do not have many features to begin with, but are very popular and therefore can be upgraded with many addons. So, in the real world they aren't as bad as it may seem here. Likewise, Apple's apps lost some points due to the fact that they are not available across different operating systems. For Kontact, the most important downside in the real world might be the lack of Microsoft Exchange support.

If you spot any errors, please leave a comment.

Download/Fullsize (external link)

Comparison of Office Suites

The most important office suite today is probably Microsoft Office, as it has the highest market share and is a de facto standard in corporate environments. The following table shows a feature comparison of the most important (and some less known) office suites:

  • Microsoft Office
  • LibreOffice (fork of OpenOffice)
  • iWork
  • Google Docs
  • WPS Office
  • Softmaker Office
  • WordPerfect Office
  • Ability Office
  • Calligra Suite (successor of KOffice)
  • Thinkfree Office
  • Gnome Office (actually not an official "suite", just a term for some stand-alone Gnome office programs)
  • and Siag Office (which is probably not aiming for the same users)

The resultign top 3 office suites are Microsoft Office, Google Docs, and LibreOffice.

If you spot any errors, please leave a comment.

Download/Fullsize (external link)

Comparison of Software Ecosystems

The three companies most known for their ecosystems are probably Microsoft, Google, and Apple.

Microsoft offers Windows (desktop and mobile), Xbox, a cloud (OneDrive), Microsoft Office, a mail and PIM service (Live), a search engine (Bing), a browser (Internet Explorer/Edge), Skype, and phones (Microsoft Lumia, formerly Nokia), among otherse.

Apple provides two consumer operating systems as well, has the iCloud, iTunes, Beats headphones, Apple Pay, the Safari browser, iMessage and Facetime, the iWork office suite, and of course hardware (Macbook, iPad, iPhone, iPod, ...).

Google offers services and products in the same markets: Chrome OS and Android, the Chrome browser, the Google Play app store, Google the search engine, Google Maps, Youtube, Hangouts, Google Docs, GMail, and many more; however, no software.

Click on the fullsize link to see a comparison of all the companies competing in the  software and electronics market to establish their ecosystem.

If you spot any errors, please leave a comment.

Download/Fullsize (external link)

Comparison of Desktop Environments

The choice of desktop environments is important for users of Linux and *BSD.

A few years ago you'd have to decide between KDE and Gnome, with the 3rd way choice of Xfce for slow computers. With the controversial release of Gnome 3, the Gnome "faction" split into 4: Gnome 3, MATE (a continuation of Gnome 2), Cinnamon (developed by Linux Mint), and Unity (developed by Ubuntu). There was also the release of LXDE (soon to be LXqt), a new low-resource desktop environment aimed at old computers and therefore in competition with Xfce.

I have also added Enlightenment, Pantheon, and CDE to the comparison, as they are also (kind of) relevant desktops for Linux/Unix systems. In addition to that, the desktops of Windows and Mac OS X are included.

If you spot an error, please leave a comment.

Download/Fullsize (external link)

Comparison of Chat and Instant Messaging Apps

This table compares popular chat and instant messaging programs. Both the classical, desktop-based applications such as ICQ and Skype, and the newer, mobile-based apps such as Whatsapp, iMessage, Line, KakaoTalk, and WeChat are included.

The winners of the comparison actually are Gadu-Gadu and QQ, which might be surprising, but is reasonable given their features and the platforms they are available for. If the number of users is included as well (as a chat program without users is useless), the top 5 go to
  1. QQ
  2. Facebook Messenger
  3. Whatsapp
  4. Gadu-Gadu
  5. Skype
If you spot any errors or have any updated information, please leave a comment.

Download/Fullsize (external link)

Comparison of Web Browsers

In this post I have attached a comparison of the 5 main web browers: Google Chrome, Apple Safari, Mozilla Firefox, Microsoft Edge, and Opera.

I have included both the desktop version and the mobile version to compare the features. Although I am personally a fan of Opera, Firefox wins in the end as the browser with the most features. Second place goes to Opera, followed by Chrome and Edge. Safari is the worst browser in terms of features, both on Mac OS X and on mobile devices (iOS).

If you spot any errors (or any new features were created), please leave a comment.

Download/Fullsize (external link)

Overview of Browsers

This table gives an overview of currently developed browsers and their availability for different platforms (Windows, Mac, Linux, Android, iOS, Blackberry etc.).

With the discontinuing of the old Presto-based Opera browser (a pity), the browser "industry" has shrunken down to three main lineages.

  • The "Navigator" line (based on the Netscape Navigator from 1994), that today includes Mozilla Firefox and Seamonkey, as well as the stock browser of the niche mobile system Sailfish OS. All these browsers use the Gecko rendering engine and reach a market share of 10-20% (and decreasing).
  • The "Explorer" line which mainly includes the Internet Explorer and its successor, Microsoft Edge, is using the Trident engine and its successor EdgeHTML, respectively. EdgeHTML is based on Trident, but does not include all the backwards compatibility code which enabled IE11 to still display corporate intranet websites written for IE5 and IE5 only.
  • The "Konqueror" line started with a rather unknown browser: Konqueror, the stock browser (and former file manager) of KDE, a desktop environment for Linux and BSD. Apple based its Safari browser on Konqueror's KHTML engine and forked it into WebKit, which is now the dominant engine on mobile devices (iOS actually does not allow any other engines - that's why Firefox for iOS was not released until 2015, then based on WebKit as well). Google then forked WebKit into Blink for its Chrome browser. Blink is now being developed by Google (Chrome) and Opera, as Opera Software stopped developing their browser in 2013 and started with a new browser based on Chrome.
There are also a few other browsers such as Dillo, NetSurf, and Opera Mini, which use their own rendering engines, but their market share is negligible.

If you spot any error, please write a comment.

Sonntag, 3. Januar 2016

2 Maps of a Future EU

Europe of Regions

This map shows a possible European Union that has abolished the old national borders and introduced regions, in accordance with the principle of subsidiarity.

The picture also shows the (co-)official languages and capitals of each region, the overseas possessions of Europe, and implies a voting system of proportional representation (fuck first-past-the-post or other kinds of semi-democratic majority voting systems).

As the map is more than five years old, it still includes the "Novorossiyan" parts of Ukraine, as well as Krim, which is rather unlikely to happen now. I have deliberately left out Moldova (too poor), Bosnia-Herzegovina (too Muslim), and Albania (both) - and of course the always neutral Switzerland.


An updated version (including the Brexit) is available HERE.

Europe without the UK

This map entertains the tought of Great Britain leaving the EU and instead getting closer with the other "5 eyes" nations (USA, Canada, Australia, New Zealand). Additionally, there is a continued conflict with Russia, as rump-Ukraine has joined the EU.

I also thought about the language situation in the European Union after Britain leaves. This would leave only one English-speaking country in the union: Ireland. And they actually have the near-extinct Irish as their first language, which they try to re-establish as an everyday language. This would  leave Europe with three big languages: German, French, and Italian. German and (a bit behind) French are already now the languages with most speakers in the EU, and Italian has about the same number of native speakers as French in Europe (but much less secondary speakers).

2 Unlikely Scenarios: Thawed Antarctica and a World without Islam

Unfrozen Antarctica

If Antarctica were to unfreeze because of global warming, it would actually not be a massive continent, but a landscape of islands and lakes (the same is true for Greenland). In this map, I have (naively) assumed that all land that is above sea level will become more or less unfrozen clay and all land below sea level will be underwater.

This of course would make the continent more attractive to settlement and territorial claims:

A World Without Islam

The 21st century is characterized by conflicts with Islam. Muslims vs. Christians (Europe, America, Australia, Russia, Middle East, Africa, Philippines), Muslims vs. Buddhists (Thailand, Indonesia, Myanmar), Muslims vs. Hindus and Sikhs (India), Muslims vs. Atheists (China,  Middle East), Muslims vs. Jews (Israel, the West), and of course Muslims against other Muslims (Sunni vs. Shia, Sunni vs. Alawites, Sunni vs. Alevis, radical Sunni vs. moderate Sunni and so on).
Imagine a world where all the others team up to fight against Islam, and after a military victory they employ a program of "deislamization", similar to the "denazification" after the second world war. The chance of this happening is about 0%, but I nevertheless entertained the thought. (Please note: I do not assume any genocides in the scenario, I was rather thinking about an re-education program similar to the one against Nazism, which worked pretty well - currently there are only about 5,000 neo-nazis in Germany according to the constitution protection agency).

2 Fictive Empires: Vikings and Habsburg claim

Viking Empire

The Viking Empire includes a united Scandinavia (including former possessions of Sweden), former Scandinavian colonies in Greenland and Vinland (America), and also assumes successful settlements in North America and parts of the Russian arctic coast.

Most of the lands are quite uninhabitable of course, so this "Empire" could not feed many millions. Nevertheless, it is an impressive landmass on world maps and has a lot of potential for further expansion.


Habsburg Empire

The Habsburg dynasty once ruled Austria-Hungary and the Holy Roman Empire. This scenario assumes a unification of both and also includes dependent Baltic states and parts of Western Francia.

The first map shows the administrative division of the Empire and its neighbouring countries, the second shows the history of the unification, and the third shows the languages spoken within the Habsburg realm.

Samstag, 2. Januar 2016

Age of Imperialism: 2 Alternative Colonialization Scenarios

Alternative Colonialization

This map shows an alternative colonialization history, where Austria-Hungary and the fictive Denmark-Sweden also secure some colonies. Additionally, the British Empire and France got some colonies taken away, so that the empires are a bit more balanced.

Colonial Languages

This map shows a different kind of alternate imperial history and the effect that the colonialization had on the languages spoken in the world today. For comparison, I have also attached a map of the "real situation" (original timeline):

6 Maps of an Alternative World

After posting some European alternate history maps, I'm going to follow up with some world maps.

United Western World

This map shows the "League of Western Nations", which might be compared to somewhat looser European Union. 

Space-Filling Empires 1

This map shows a completely random world full of space-filling empires. The legend is written in Latin as the Roman Empire has survived to the present day and is the leading nation in Europe.

Space-Filling Empires 2

This map has the same basic idea as the one before, but features some other empires. 

Cold War with Five Blocs

Here we have a cold far consisting of 5 blocs: the democratic/liberal bloc led by the USA, the monarchistic bloc consisting of some rather random countries, the fascist bloc (also including fascist Russia), as well as communist China and a still existing Ottoman Empire.

World Map with Language Borders only

For this map, I tried to only create states based on language borders. As you can see, no colonization of the Americas and Australia/New Zealand is assumed; however, there is also an Afrikaans-speaking state in South Africa and Europe has the ethnic borders from before the world wars. The colours indicate the language families.

The Midlandish Civilization 


In the sixth map, you should start with the small picture-in-picture. This scenario assumes some larger cultural areas (Europe/Middle East/North Africa; East Asia; Persia/India/Indochina; Sub-Saharan Africa; pre-Columbian North America; pre-Columbian Central & South America). The larger picture then shows the nations that are deemed part of the Western Midlandish civilization. Again, the map features random states and borders. Sumer and Poland-Lithuania in the same map? No problem.

Freitag, 1. Januar 2016

4 Maps of an Alternative Europe

In this post, I will show you four alternative history maps of Europe. None of these follow a specific timeline and I did not make up any events triggering these scenarios to happen. These maps are just for fun.

Cultural Zones of Europe

This map shows Europe divided into five cultural zones, which also correspond to the languages spoken there. The dotted lines separate provinces or sub-regions.

Ancient Peoples Surviving in Europe

The second map shows a map of Europe with some ancient peoples surviving into the present. These include peoples which "recently" disappeared (such as the Crimea Goths or the Baltic Prussians), but also peoples that were replaced centuries ago (such as the Gauls and the Sumerians). 

The colours indicate language families: 
  • blue for Germanic
  • green for Italic
  • yellow for Celtic
  • red for Slavic
  • orange for Baltic
  • magenta for other Indo-European languages
  • violet for Uralic
  • brown for all other language phyla

Alternative Europe with Sensible Borders

This map shows some "sensible" alternative borders, based on historic borders or ethnic divisions. The areas indicated by scattered lines can be interpreted as officially autonomous provinces (e.g. Czechoslovakia) or other areas which are de facto self-governed (e.g. Kurdistan).

Alternative Historical Borders


This map is similar to the third one in that it shows alternative borders, which are based on historic borders or ethnic lines. Again, Germany is rather large (mixing the pre-WW1 borders and the HRE borders), while some of the smaller nations in West Europe have gained their independency. The three letter acronyms indicate the official and regional/minority languages of each state.

What would have happened if the Nazis won?

Download here

Amazon has recently released their series "Man in the High Castle". In this alternative universe, America is occupied by Nazi Germany in the East and Imperial Japan in the West.

However, would that be realistic?

It seems to be a common question - both for people interested in history and everyone else - to wonder what would have happened if the Axis had won World War 2. In this map, I have included the actual plans of the German and Japanese governments on how to divide the world after victory. This "New World Order" is not based on my own ideas, but on actual plans.

These plans also included the British Empire joining the Axis (as the Nazis always wanted them to do) and a later betrayal of Italy and annexation of some northern regions deemed Germanic. Interestingly, it seems that there haven't been any plans to conquer the USA, which the Nazis deemed "half Jewified, half Negrified" and probably too strong too physically occupy.
The map as a whole looks a bit ridiculous with two medium-sized countries jointly ruling most of the world, but then again the cold war was also characterized by two worldwide blocs being led by two not-super-big countries (in terms of population).

If you spot any factual error in my map or have any other kind of feedback, please leave a comment.

Dienstag, 29. Dezember 2015


Welcome to my blog. I am using it to post infographics, lists, maps, and other content I created.

In the past I have created the following:
  • Alternative History maps
  • Real History maps
  • World maps of the present
  • Family trees on various topics such as languages or religions
  • Comparison tables
  • Other Thoughts and Models
The topics of my graphics include the humanities (lingustics, history, politics etc.) and also, as a completely unrelated area, software and technology.

Some of my graphics have been posted on the web already (e.g., 4chan, Wikipedia), while some others leave my harddisk for the very first time.

I will be starting a new job soon where I feel that I don't have any time to pursue my hobby anymore, and because of that I wanted to publish my favourite graphics and collect them on this blog. Everything posted is my own work unless otherwise stated and I am always happy about some feedback. If you spot an error in any infographic or map, please tell me!