Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Differing Worlds: Murder In America

I wanted to do a run up to the data  I was going to present but I saw that the post I was writing was going off the rails into a different subject altogether, cultures and civilizations. Since I am cannot think of a good way to introduce the topic of this post, I will ask you pardon as I do a simple information dump.

Without further ado, here are some cities in the United States and their murder rates. You will notice that there are a wide gulf. Some cities, like Spokane, are almost on par with Europe while others, like Detroit, might as well be in the third world.              15.9            48.2          3.2                    3.7   7.7     6.3           3.9            1.9     1.9

Why is that? I have my own ideas but, save for an observation that this might indicate regional decay, I will save my thoughts on this matter for a different time.


  1. Just remember. Correlation does not necessarily mean causation. I think there are going to be some people who are going to blame groups of people for what's been happening with crime without considering the effects of the welfare state.

  2. Population density makes a difference (the populations in those cities differ by a wide margin). The population of Billings, Montana is tiny, even Spokane is twice that and it's population is less than 10 percent the population of Chicago.

    1. New York City has a population 5.35 times that of Detroit but Detriot has a murder rate 7.6 times higher than New York city. Ultimately it would take a regression analysis to even begin to determine how much population density affects the murder rate, however, I strongly suspect that population density differrences are not the prime reason.

    2. "Makes a difference" does not mean it's the only or primary reason. But there does tend to be more crime in the city than the country, and the larger the city In general the more dangerous it tends to be. Number of reasons...anonymity, lax law enforcement, ect.

      At the end of the day it's a cost to gains equation. If the cost of crime is lower than the potential gain, you'll see more of it. That cost might be in the form of risk of greater or equivalent use of force, or public scorn, or self-imposed taboo. Like most everything else. Not a lot of gum on shoes in Singapore, nor graffiti.

    3. All true but that goes without saying, all things being equal the country will suffer lower crime than the city. There is something more going on than simple population density. Detroit and Chicago have murder rates multpile times higher than their equivalent sister cities and greater.

      I really should have excluded all the cities save for Detriot, Chicago, New York and L.A when doing this post.

    4. can probably add Baltimore, and (true to your point) its population isn't terrible large.

      Baltimore was (up until about two years ago, not sure now) where they brought our flight doctors for training before sending them out into Afghanistan and other combat areas. It was considered among the best places to treat the sorts of traumatic violent injuries seen in combat situations.

  3. I'm gonna be "that guy" that Roberto is referring to, and just talk about the elephant in the room. This rate of crime does not happen in areas with high concentrations of groups of people of east Asian and northwest European descent. Over successive generations, under conditions of a state monopoly on violence, the violent elements of their societies were bred out of the population through penal codes which killed off or restricted reproduction for the violent elements of their society.

    You can have a concentrated population of Africans (or genetically 80% Africans) in a northwestern European culture for hundreds of years, but genetically they are still predisposed towards the behavior their predecessors adapted to over eons of natural selection in the environment they existed. You can control for environment, you can control for poverty, but you will inevitably get the same result. Sure, there are outliers in either direction, but if you take the mean of a population distribution, it will reveal the inclinations of that population as a whole.

    By the way, correlation can actually be a useful metric of measure. It may not always reveal the cause of a particular phenomena, but it can at least explain whether two things are related.

    1. There are a lot of violent Muslim immigrants in ghettos throughout Europe. But our Muslim immigrants don't typically exhibit those characteristics.

      By contrast, there is not a proportional violent crime problem from (non-Muslim) African immigrants in Europe.


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Seattle resident whose real name is Kevin Daniels. This blog covers the following topics, libertarian philosophy, realpolitik, western culture, history and the pursuit of truth from the perspective of a libertarian traditionalist.