Liberalism and eugenics
The natural order, of which war was a part, spontaneously generated the race of semi-slaves that society could never do witout. However, this supposedly spontaneous process must be encouraged by timely political interventions from above. According to Mandeville, access to education on the part of the ‘Labour Poor’ was to be avoided at all costs: the ‘Proportion of the Society’ would be compromised by it. The requisite cheap, docile and obedient labour force would risk disappearing. Other representatives of the liberal tradition invoked much more extensive intervention. For the purposes of generating a potentially perfect race of docile workers and instruments of labour, the concentration-camp universe of the ‘workhouses’ could prove useful. Locking up the children of delinquents and ‘suspects’ therein, once could (observed Bentham) produce an ‘indigenous class’ that would be distinguished for its industriousness and sense of discipline. If early marriage was promoted within this class, treating the offspring as apprentices until they attained their majority, the workhouses and society would dispose of an inexhaustible reserve of manpower of the highest quality. In other words, the through the ‘gentlest of all revolutions’ - a sexual revolution - the ‘indigenous class’, propagating itself in hereditary fashion from one generation to the next, would be transformed into a kind of indigenous race.
Sieyes envisaged a similarly ‘gentle’ revolution, and likewise for the purposed of producing a class or race of labourers as docile as possible. Like Bentham, the French liberal indulged in a eugenicist utopia (or dystopia). He imagined a ‘cross’ (croisement) between monkeys and ‘blacks’ for creating domesticated beings adapted to servile work: ‘the new race of anthropomorphic monkeys’. In this way, whites, who remained at the top of the social hierarchy s directors of production, could dispose of blacks as auxiliary instruments of production, or slaves proper, who would precisely be the anthropomorphic monkeys:However extraordinary, however immoral this idea might seem at first sight, I have reflected on it at length, and can find no other way in a great nation, especially i countries that are very hot or very cold, to reconcile the directors of works with the simple instruments of labour.
While, on the one hand, it was necessary to encourage the production and reproduction of a race of servants or actual slaves, on the other, it was necessary to limit, so far as possible, the unproductive, parasitic surplus population, the mass of poor who, far from creating wealth, devoured it like locusts. To maintain the demographic balance, Malthus called for a policy that postponed marriage and procreation among the popular classes; otherwise, nature would dispose of them with wars, famines and epidemics. In this respect the role of medicine was problematic. In 1764 Franklin wrote to a doctor: ‘Half the lives you save are not worth saving, as being useless; and almost the other Half ought not to be sav’d, as being mischievous. Does your Conscience never hint to you the Impiety of being in constant Warfare against the Plans of Providence?’ Some decades later, de Tocqueville hoped that one could finally be shot of the ‘prison rabble’ like rats, maybe thanks to a massive fire. Did the French liberal ‘dream of genocide’? The claim is exaggerated. But there remains his harsh polemic against a ‘bastard charity’ that threatened order: ‘It is the philanthropy of Paris that is killing us.’
A general conclusion is indicated. The eugenic temptation runs deep in the liberal tradition. Not by chance, the discipline that took this name had its baptism in Great Britain and experienced extraordinary success in the United States.
Dominic Losurdo in Liberalism - A Counter-history pp 114-15
In relation to race: It’s amazing how these historical and turn of the century pricks who had nothing to do besides be racist, base a lot of their claims on the weather.