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zog

Are you an anti-Semite? Wonder no longer! Take the poll here: https://darussophile.polldaddy.com/s/are-you-anti-semite-adl

Am I an anti-Semite? The SPLC and RationalWiki both seem to think so. But there are also those who believe I am a hasbara shill, or even Jewish myself. Either way, I don’t appear to be a particularly enthusiastic philo/anti-Semitic propagandist – of the 1,200+ posts to date at my Unz.com archive, only about 15 are actually mainly about Jews (and I hope this will be the last one for some time).

map-world-jews-antisemitism

Percentage anti-Semites according to the ADL (i.e. believe in 6+/11 of popular stereotypes about Jews).

Fortunately, the ADL has attempted to make at least a minimal attempt at quantification. You qualify as an anti-Semite if you answer Probably True to six or more of the following questions:

  1. Jews are more loyal to Israel than to [this country/to the countries they live in]
  2. Jews have too much power in the business world
  3. Jews have too much power in international financial markets
  4. Jews still talk too much about what happened to them in the Holocaust
  5. Jews don’t care what happens to anyone but their own kind
  6. Jews have too much control over global affairs
  7. Jews have too much control over the United States government
  8. Jews think they are better than other people
  9. Jews have too much control over the global media
  10. Jews are responsible for most of the world’s wars
  11. People hate Jews because of the way Jews behave

In this post I will try to systemically answer each of these statements, but before I finalize my excommunication from ZOG, there’s a couple of caveats that I wish to make.

First, many of these combine an observation – often a statistically correct one – with a normative judgment. Of course Jews have many more billionaires and elite journalists per capita than any other major ethnicity. Is this good or bad – or even more ambiguously, “too much”? Difficult to say. For a committed blank slatist, the answer should be “Probably True”. Hence, the “anti-Semitism” of the more honest and consistent Leftists. Then again, knowledge of race differences in IQ, and the correlation of IQ with economic success, explains most if not all of the residual. But even though it annuls many of the more extreme anti-Semitic arguments, this form of argumentation is itself racist – and ironically, it was overwhelmingly Jews, e.g. Franz Boas, Leon Kamin, Gould, Lewontin, etc. – to a degree disproportionate even to their IQ advantage – who developed the modern blank slatism that tabooed such perspectives (although I have mixed opinions about his work, I think Kevin McDonald demonstrates this pretty conclusively). In other words, it was the Jews themselves who torpedoed the single most succinct and powerful argument against anti-Semitism; hence, also, the “anti-racist” IQ denialism amongst some of the more overt anti-Semites. Very amusing and ironic.

Second, these are also all negative stereotypes and perceptions. There are many things one may admire in Jewry. For instance, it is pretty much impossible for any educated person not to hold a considerable degree of appreciation for Jewish cultural and scientific accomplishments. As a “Russian alt-right, white nationalist anti-Semitic conspiracy theorist”, I will also admit to a no lesser degree of appreciation for the Jews’ verbal IQ-powered political acumen – simultaneously running a nationalist regime in Israel that is the envy of the Alt Right and exerting an inordinate degree of influence over US foreign policy via the Lobby, while somehow managing to maintain a reputation for erudite, tolerant, progressivism. Although normies will consider this as more of a negative stereotype. Oops. There go the paradoxes, again.

But this does go to show how fluid the boundaries are. For instance, the South Koreans are highly anti-Semitic by the ADL’s schema, but it’s a sort of anti-Semitism through philo-Semitism: “The idea of emulating Jews in order to get ahead in the world has gotten other people’s backs up as well. On the blog +972, Mairav Zonszein wrote: “I can’t blame the South Koreans for being interested, and it is indeed a compliment of sorts—but it brings up a point that I have written about before: the fetishization of Jews, whereby singling Jews out for greatness is the same as discriminating against them or stereotyping them.”

Conversely, just as there is much to like and praise, there is also much to dislike and criticize in all peoples. On the pages of this blog I have made fun of the Amerimutt, the Britbong, the Eternal Kraut, Sweden Yes, and the Butthurt Belt of Europe. I have called for kebab removal and named the Mongoloids soulless drones. Paradoxically, I am also one of the most hardcore Russophobes out there; anyone who has read me long enough has probably figured out that I consider my own people to be no better than White Negroes. Probably the only ethnicity I haven’t called subhuman scum at some time or other are Gypsies – and only because it is so self-evident in their case. So bear this in mind before consigning me to the ranks of hardcore anti-Semites – I actually hate all ethnicities, to some extent. Except the Czechs.

So with these preliminary comments out of the way, let’s answer the ADL survey point by point.

***

1. Jews are more loyal to Israel than to [this country/to the countries they live in]

The dual loyalties of the Jews is a popular stereotype, so much so that around a third of Americans and half of Europeans believe that they are more loyal to Israel than to their own country.

This isn’t just a goyim stereotype. Even America’s premier Jewish mag openly speaks of the “burden” of having one’s loyalties “inevitably divided” for Diaspora Jews. The Jews are themselves inordinately obsessed with this issue. For instance, several years ago, the Israeli immigration absorption and foreign ministries polled tens of thousands of Jewish Americans on where their loyalties would lie in the event of a crisis between Israel and the US. Unfortunately, this polling project was halted when it came to light, so as far as I know, we do not have any hard numbers on what Jews think themselves.

israel-stalinbus-1949

Israel, 1949. The world’s first Stalinbus. Now the Jews pretend they always hated Stalin, just like Balts like to think that they had nothing to do with Communists coming to power in Russia.

Historically, it seems to me Jewish loyalty was highly contingent on what best served Jewish interests (opposite example: Germans, who have tended to be remarkably loyal to their host countries, even when they were at war with Germany).

Consider Russian history. Jews were strongly hostile to the Russian Empire – Minister of the Interior Vyacheslav von Plehve estimated that 40% of its revolutionaries in the early 1900s were Jews. That said, I am not one of those people who ascribe the Bolshevik Revolution to Jews – the Bolsheviks were a predominantly ethnic Russian party, and it was the Balts, not Jews, who were instrumental in terrorizing central Russia into submission in the critical early months of the Civil War. Still, Jewish loyalty to the new, highly philo-Semitic early USSR soon picked up, and they ended up manning 40% of the NKVD for most of the 1930s and procuring Stalin the secrets of the atomic bomb from America – where WASP elites largely barred Jews from social (if not economic) advancement.

But as Brezhnev’s USSR instituted pro-majority affirmative action - which is all that late Soviet “anti-Semitism” amounted to – the Jews started joining dissident circles, emigrating, and lobbying for anti-Soviet sanctions in the US. Meanwhile, as America itself became a much nicer place for the Jews and the world’s foremost champion of Israel, the most visible face of Jewish political activism transitioned from Trotskyist internationalism to that weird form of Jewish-American nationalism called neoconservatism.

Today, Russia is one of Europe’s more pro-Israel countries, and according to the ADL, it is more philo-Semitic than almost any other East European nation. Putin’s daughter married a Jewish minigarch, just like Trump’s. Consequently, there are plenty of Jewish-Russian “conservative/patriots” types both in Russia – Soloviev (Shapiro), Khinshtein come to mind – and in Israel – Lieberman, Eskin, and even a few odd nationalists (mostly prominently the “son of a lawyer” Zhirinovsky, though he is half-Russian and does not identify as Jewish). Even so, Russia is in a new cold war with the United States, which is a much more dedicated – and powerful – champion of global Jewish interests, so Jews are likewise considerably overrepresented in the ranks of the Russian pro-Western liberal opposition (Khodorkovsky, half of the Echo of Moscow crowd) and massively overrepresented in the ranks of the Western Russophobes (Ioffe, Elder, Applebaum, Nemtsova, Weiss, etc). It is certainly telling that this resurgence of Jewish hostility came at just the point when Russia became something approximating a sovereign state, even if it is more philo-Semitic today than at any other point in its history since at least the 1920s.

Now obviously, the Jews don’t constitute a hive mind, and there exists a wide range of opinions among them, as Winston Churchill eloquently argued in his 1920 article Zionism vs. Bolshevism. Even so, it appears to me that Jewish practice of and rationalization of dual loyalty is central to their own view of themselves to an extent unseen with any other major people, and it has been that way since at least the age of the Pharaohs and ancient Babylonia.

So, that’s at least Probably True.

2. Jews have too much power in the business world

There is no question that Jews are massively overrepresented amongst the ranks of the world’s super-rich. They are the world’s “market dominant minority,” to borrow Amy Chua’s terminology.

Jews constituted 36% of the Forbes 400 in 2010, and 21% of the 200 richest Russians (down from 6/7 of the Semibankirschina oligarch cabal that as good as ruled Russia in the late 1990s).

In the meantime, they constituted about 2% of the US population, and less than 0.2% in Russia.

jewish-billionaires

Source: Pumpkin Person – Does IQ explain racial differences in extreme wealth?

Note that this is something that Jews themselves talk about and are understandably proud of, though G-d forbid the goys notice.

Admittedly, a large (though far from total) percentage of this overrepresentation is crisply explained by higher Jewish IQ, and I have speculated that Mediterranean peoples – Greeks, Levantines, and yes, Jews – might be especially talented at making money, relative to IQ.

However, as I have already pointed out, this is where progressive Leftist faces a major paradox – their dogmatic blank slatism precludes IQ-based arguments, while their postmodern relativism also ruled out traditional boomercore conservative arguments ascribing Jewish success to superior culture, such as propensity for thrift, hard work, etc. Consequently, the only route open to them to go and full mule and ascribe Jewish economic success to, well, Jewish privilege. Hence why the more honest and committed – or more socially autistic – leftists, e.g. Corbynites and ethnic minority SJWs in the US, tend to veer into “anti-Semitism”, drawing the ire of neoliberal ZOG.

So it’s ultimately pretty hard to say. Although I am initially slightly inclined to say Probably False, but the fact that a lot of this privilege-speak was developed by Jews annoys me and tilts me towards Probably True.

3. Jews have too much power in international financial markets

Obviously if Jews are overrepresented in the business world, then they will also be overrepresented in financial markets, since there is a great degree of overlap between these two spheres.

But there are a few critical caveats that make my assessment Probably False.

First, this question is largely an extension of the previous one, and I am averse to double counting – especially given the ambiguities I express on the last question.

Second, this question is too distinctly evocative of the Rothschild conspiracy theory, whereby the eponymous family cabal controls most of the world’s wealth and institutions along with the Rockefellers. This is complete nonsense. While the Rothschilds were Europe’s premier oligarchs in the 19th century, a century of inflationary defaults and dilution by inheritance have grinded them down, and today they constitute just a few small investment banks that are pretty much irrelevant next to the Goldman Sachs and J.P. Morgans of this world.

Third, Israel is a minnow in global financial terms. Its stock market capitalization is less than 20% that of Switzerland’s, despite having similar populations.

4. Jews still talk too much about what happened to them in the Holocaust

This is not just Probably True – it is obviously, objectively true.

poll-jewish-identity

Source: PEW – What Does It Mean to Be Jewish?

I mean I don’t even fault them for it. I would probably go on about the Holocaust if I was a Jew myself.

Even pushing Holocaust denial laws serves Jewish ethnic interests by pushing extreme anti-Semitism to the margins and thereby reducing the probability of it getting repeated.

Note that Israel doesn’t rush to recognize other genocides – e.g., that of the Armenians. Then again, trying to maintain a monopoly on victimhood makes cynical sense.

5. Jews don’t care what happens to anyone but their own kind

This is just an absurd exaggeration of #1. Probably False.

Jews played a huge role in the US civil rights movement, and ultimately I don’t think it was wholly or even primarily driven by racial hostility to the majority European population. Charity is a constituent part of traditional Judaism, with Jews obligated to give up 10% of their income to the needy – and not all of that goes to other Jews.

The Jews might be more clannish than North-West Europeans, but not more so than typical Mediterraneans – and a great deal less so than Sicilians or Caucasians.

As the commenter MawBTW noted on Greg Cochran’s blog, Eliezer Shlomo Yudkowsky – one of the core people behind Effective Altruism, possibly the most inherently universalistic ideology out there – is one of the most Jewish Jews around: “Eliezer Shlomo Yudkowsky has a comically Jewish name and a comically Jewish face. He’s an atheist, but that’s a Jewish stereotype too. On the female side, you have Shula Firestone, who’s full name is Shulamith Bath Shmuel Ben Ari Feuerstein and who Wikipedia describes as “a central figure in the early development of radical feminism”. By some miracle she contrived to be born in Canada instead of the first synagogue from Ellis Island.

6. Jews have too much control over global affairs

I don’t think so. Even though the US is somewhat under their thumb (see #7), it’s not like Israel was exactly getting its way under Obama. And Jews have far less influence in the rest of the world.

Besides, the flip side of the US vetoing all the anti-Israel UN resolutions is that an absurd percentage of those resolutions are made against Israel in the first place.

So that’s Probably False.

7. Jews have too much control over the United States government

This, on the other hand, is not just Probably True – it is obviously, glaringly true.

Consider the following.

It was supported by 9/172 countries. It was opposed by 63% of US voters, including 44% of Republicans. Even so, 90-0(/100) US Senators, including Bernie Sanders, voted to recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital.

All this happened under an American President with well-known financial and familial ties to Jewish oligarchs and Chabad, whom many liberal American Jews nonetheless believe to be the second coming of Hitler.

Oh, and even speculating about the Jewish Lobby in the US is anti-Semitic – just ask Stephen Walt/John Mearsheimer or Philip Giraldi about how their careers fared after they started talking about this subject.

Incidentally, I say all this as someone who has no dog in the fight over Israel and Palestine. So far as I’m concerned, these are two tribes locked in their tribal struggle – admittedly, one is far more intelligent and dominant than the other – but since neither is particularly pro-Russian or anti-Russian, I see no reason to favor one or the other independently of objective geopolitical calculations. I don’t go on about the “AngloZionists” as one columnist here does, nor do I particularly care about “Israeli apartheid” and the travails of the Palestinians – that’s the job of Israel (Shamir), not mine.

Still, that does not mean ZOG is entirely a figment of the anti-Semitic imagination.

Case in point: The taboo against even noticing the Jewish Lobby has reached such heights that there is now a bipartisan consensus in the US to effectively do away with the First Amendment in order to… criminalize advocacy of BDS. The American political elites are happy to scrap the very Constitution that they otherwise worship for make benefit of Israel.

8. Jews think they are better than other people

I think the only people who think otherwise are people who have not met many Jews. For instance, jokes like this about incompetent goyim are hardly atypical:

Ivan: What if we have to fight China? They have more than a billion people!
Pyotr: We’ll win with quality over quantity, just like the Jews with the Arabs.
Ivan: But do we have enough Jews?

This sense of superiority extends to Jewish religious texts.

For instance, Deuteronomy 14:2 – “For you are a people holy to the Lord your God. Out of all the peoples on the face of the earth, the Lord has chosen you to be his treasured possession.

And this is tame. Some kabbalistic texts go as far as to describe non-Jews as “beasts in human form”.

Conclusion: Probably True.

Now admittedly, one might argue that the superiority complex is justified.

murray-jewish-accomplishment

Source: Charles Murray – Human Accomplishment

After all, it is an objective fact that Jews are far wealthier, more successful, better educated (more than can be explained by IQ, as Ron Unz showed!), and higher achieving than the goyim.

This, as Richard Nixon correctly noted, engenders a certain arrogance on the part of certain Jews. Which I suppose can be looked over, if they could just keep it to themselves.

Unfortunately, that’s not always the case. Here’s the thing. Israel happens to be far more of a “national state” than any other Western country or even the Russian “Putlerreich” (that exists only in Western imaginations). Israel has a big wall, it deports Black African illegals en masse, and opinion polls suggest that half of Israeli school children oppose equal legal rights for Arab-Israeli citizens. Most importantly, Israel is The Jewish State. Even though ethnic Russians constitute a higher percentage of the Russian population than do Jews in Israel, they can only dream of a “Russia for Russians” in the Putlerreich.

No wonder, then, that many in the Alt Right, such as Richard Spencer, cite Israel as the sort of ethnostate that they themselves aspire to for their own people. Good luck with that, though – any European leader who aspires to a quarter of what Israel managed will immediately become a Second Hitler. Thanks in large if not exclusive part to…

Well, Jews.

What knowing goyim notice and dislike is that too many of their (((fellow white people))) combine progressive, pro-minority agendas with aggressive support of Israel across virtually all countries where they have a substantial demographic presence.

The US: While the Jewish Lobby supports Israel and influence the US to an extent that ROG can only dream of (see #7), other Jewish activist organizations – which substantially overlap with the Jewish Lobby – have played outsized role in promoting Marxism, feminism, anti-racism, etc., present immigration as a “core Jewish value”, and have been outspoken in trying to discredit Trump, the closest the US has ever had or might ever have to a Netanyahu.

France: Guillaume Durocher has written a lot on Jewish ethnic lobbies who propagandize the poz and hate speech laws in France while aggressively shilling for Israel.

Russia: As soon as the anti-extremist Article 282 was brought against the Russian liberal/Jewish nationalist Anton Nossik for advocating the extermination of Syrians, on the basis that it was good for Israel, the entire Echo of Moscow crowd suddenly became ardent proponents of absolute free speech, even though they had previously been at the forefront of writing Russia’s hate speech laws in the first place.

ioffe-putin-is-antisemite Perhaps the ultimate “Jewish spy” archetype is Julia Ioffe: From being an Israel First activist at university, wall and all (!), she seamlessly transitioned into condemning Americans who want the same for their own country: “Je Suis Refugee“, therefore you need Infinity Immigrants! (Ioffe was not, of course, a “refugee” from the USSR in any meaningful sense of the word). She has also castigated Russian “cattle” who had the temerity to vote for the Vladimir Putin, who she believes hates Jews because he once said that Russians sacrificed more than anybody to save Jews from the Holocaust – no, really!

I can’t think of any other major market-dominant minority that has a substantial percentage of people who push “nationalism for me, not for thee” on their host countries.

For instance, the Chinese in South-East Asia, though economically dominant, do not translate it into political power, or a “culture of critique” against their host societies. On the other hand, the locals also organize the occasional pogrom against them, so perhaps it is the Chinese who are doing it wrong?

Ironically, George Soros – despite his Emmanuel Goldstein status amongst anti-globalists – isn’t really a Jewish spy. He has gotten high on his own supply and trafficks to Israel too, with the result that Israel has disavowed him. (There were reports that he stopped financing FEMEN when they attempted to open an Israeli affiliate, but AFAIK that was fake news).

9. Jews have too much control over the global media

Jewish overrepresentation (even relative to IQ) in media, journalism, and Hollywood is too obvious to deny. However, is it “too much”?

On /pol/ you have memes floating by every so often suggesting that Jewish dominance in the media is near total. Here is one such example:

jewish-control-media

I don’t know to what extent this table is accurate and/or cherry-picked. It seems to be too extreme to be true, but who knows. Maybe we can establish that in the comments.

Anyhow, my rejoinder to the idea that Jews control the media and that this is a bad thing, which I employed in a email discussion with an Alt Right intellectual who is deep into the JQ, went as follows:

… According to Wikipedia, there are 15,000 Jews in Sweden. That’s <0.2% of the population. Even you would surely agree that this isn’t anywhere big enough to seize control of any significant institution, even for a people as intelligent and apparently wily as the Jews. (If it is then resistance is futile, assimilation is inevitable).

If France, Germany, and the UK are cuck countries, then Sweden is the cucklord supreme. It has by far the highest Third World immigration per capita of any major EU country (100k+/year), and it is also the only one where a majority of people continues to favor the opens doors approach!

In short, it appears that the Swedish people are perfectly fine with voting themselves out of existence and electing another. That is despite (or because?) the media, political, and business scenes in Sweden are dominated by ethnic Swedes. And it has the strongest political correctness culture in all of Europe, with transgressions against it being punished not only by ostracism, as in the US and much of Europe, but also by the real threat of prison time.

And it’s all almost entirely Judenfrei! ;)

So, anyway… you’re probably anticipating my question/criticism here. How would Kevin MacDonald/Culture of Critique and the other propagators of the theory that there is are strong Jewish Ethnic Genetic Interests that unwaveringly works against Whites explain Sweden – a white country that is doing away with itself with the willing and happy connivance of not only its (ethnically Swedish) journalists and politicians but a strong majority of the (ethnic Swedish) population themselves?

Problem: That 0.1% includes the Bonniers:

jewish-control-media-sweden

My interlocutor replied:

Sweden is a bit of a mystery. The Jewish factor is not completely absent there however. The Jewish Bonnier family apparently owns several publishing companies, the private channel TV4 (with as many viewers as the main state TV channel), various other channels, a film company, cinema theaters, magazines, and newspapers, including two leading dailies.

From that alone, punching above one’s weight as ever! (In Poland, perhaps the most homogeneous country in Europe, the leading liberal daily constantly shaming the Poles for not being international and “modern” enough is owned by . . . Adam Michnik.)

Lack of country specific knowledge led me down a dead end, and forces me to acknowledge Probably True.

There used to be a site called J-DAR that scraped movie databases to calculate a “jewdar” score for Hollywood movies and “celebrate the Jewish contribution to the film industry.” Unfortunately, the site seems to have been folded, presumably because not everyone was celebrating. It would be interesting to revive the project and do some statistical analysis.

10. Jews are responsible for most of the world’s wars

First, this is simply not the case historically.

Jews had nothing to do with World War I (nor as Niall Ferguson showed did bankers want that war, later Communist propaganda regardless).

Jews only provoked World War II in Nazi propaganda.

Jews had nothing to do with the Cold War.

Nor did Jews have much to do with most post-Cold War conflicts. The only major recent war that could conceivably be somewhat-somehow attributed to Jewish influence is the invasion of Iraq, but there were lots of other, more important factors in play there. Otherwise, they were at best only incidental at most. The Syrian Civil War is primarily a Syrian conflict, stoked along by the US to be sure, but not incited by it. The main responsibility for the War in the Donbass ultimately lies on Russia; if not for Russian support, the rebellion would have been crushed in summer 2014.

For the other perspective, see Philip Giraldi: America’s Jews Are Driving America’s Wars.

That said, my own position is Probably False.

I might change my assessment if the US ever does end up seriously bombing Iran, but the Jewish Lobby has had no luck with that – and I doubt that will change any time soon.

Second, ultimately only 6% of Congressmen are Jews, and the most prominent and aggressive warhawks (e.g. John McCain) don’t seem to be Jews.

The most visible face of ZOG in the current administration, the Kushnerites, might be more aggressive than isolationist Bannonites, but they are less aggressive than McMaster.

Jews figure prominent in the Russiagate conspiracy theory, to a greater extent than can be explained just by IQ, but they are nowhere near as uniformly Russophobic as other East European emigres (Brzezinski, Ros-Lehtinen, etc.). The Jew Stephen Cohen is probably the most eminent “Russophile” in the US, and there are no end of Jewish anti-war/anti-imperialist commenters (Greenwald, Chomsky, Blumenthal, Chapo Trap House).

Jews are significantly more hostile to Iran, but they don’t have a monopoly on it (e.g. Michael Flynn). Besides, it’s more understandable than with respect to Russia, since Iran actually is deeply hostile to Israeli interests.

Jews don’t seem to be hostile to China at all.

Third, while Israel itself is a relatively belligerent country, it’s not any kind of wild outlier by global standards.

11. People hate Jews because of the way Jews behave

Explanation 1: Pretty much everyone’s ancestors were evil anti-Semitic scumbags who loved to persecute and fleece Jews.

jewish-expulsions

Source: /pol/

Explanation 2: The fact that everyone and their dog ended up deporting Jews at some time or other indicates that it might also have something to do with Jewish behavior.

Standard explanation is #1, but maybe, just maybe, #2 also came into play at times. Here are some arguments in favor of the goyim:

1. The plural of anecdotes might not be data, but it surely is stereotype, and Shylock didn’t emerge from a blank canvass.

2. Jewish dual loyalties and culture of critique.

map-adl-antisemitism

Source: ADL – Global 100

3. Poland – epicenter of the “Paradisus Iudaeorum” under the Commonwealth, eagerly welcoming in Jews exiled from the rest of Europe – is now the most anti-Semitic region of Europe, even more than half a century after the Nazis genocided the Jews out of Poland.

4. Israel’s neighbors hating Jews more than anyone else. Including 58% of Armenians, who are some of their closest relatives.

Though in fairness everyone in the Middle East hates each other anyway, and they quite reasonably all view each other with suspicion: “Beware Greeks bearing gifts”; regional variations on “It takes two [A] to deceive one [B]; two [B] to deceive one [C]“, …, in which A, B, C… = Turks, Greeks, Persians, Jews, Armenians, …

Conclusion: It takes two to tango, but since the politically correct position is to avoid blaming Jews at all, I suppose this would be Probably True.

FINAL RESULTS: 7/11. Anti-Semite!

I suppose I deserve my “accolades” from the SPLC and RationalWiki after all.

 
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How is the Russian media covering the elections?

I don’t watch TV, so I can’t give any personal impressions, but fortunately there are other people to do that in succinct graphical format.

Color scheme is constant: Grudinin, Putin, Zhirinovsky, Yavlinsky, Titov, Baburin, Sobchak.

russia-elections-2018-media-mentions

Total number of media mentions in segments about the elections.

russia-elections-2018-media-attention

Average number of seconds of TV time per elections segments.

russia-elections-2018-media-positivity

Positive/negative coverage of election candidates.

 
• Category: Ideology • Tags: Media, Politics, Russia, Russian Elections 2018 
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kompromat-splc

RationalWiki a few weeks ago, now the SPLC: “The Internet Research Agency: behind the shadowy network that meddled in the 2016 Elections.”

Looks like I’m doing good progress up the ranks of the Legions of Hate (and Unemployability).

Reprinting my comment:

Hi, I’m the ultrafascist esoteric Hitlerist anti-Semitic Unz blogger mentioned here.

This article massively overestimates the resources at these people’s disposal. I doubt that all of the assets employed by these groups to spread their message equals a tenth of the $302,800,000 at the disposal of the SPLC, America’s richest hate group.

More importantly, it cardinally misrepresents the degree of goal alignment between all these disparate groups and people – and consequently, their capacity for coordinated action. For instance, the feud between The Duran (and Fort Russ) vs. Russia Insider is open and long-running; the former actually condemned the latter for anti-Semitism/questioning Jewish influence (cross out as per your ideological preferences) just a few weeks ago. It is strange that someone who presents himself as an expert on these matters is apparently ignorant of it. Then again, he also considers the Gerasimov Doctrine to be a real thing, so competence is hardly expected.

My own involvement with Lozansky’s World Russia Forum does not extend past attending a couple of conferences they organized several years ago (which I openly blogged about). I have zero links to Dugin and, as an actual Russian nationalist, have no use for Eurasianism, with its blank slatism and support for open borders with Central Asia.

.

 
• Category: Humor • Tags: SPLC, The AK 
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Statistics:

Vors per Capita

Ethnic Group Vors Pop (1989) Vors/100,000
Yezidis 26 152,717 17.02
Abkhazians 9 105,308 8.55
Georgians 242 3,981,045 6.08
Talish 1 21,602 4.63
Greeks 5 358,068 1.40
Ingush 3 237,438 1.26
Balkarians 1 85,126 1.17
Chechens 9 956,879 0.94
Armenians 30 4,623,232 0.65
Jews 7 1,378,344 0.51
Ossetians 3 597,998 0.50
Dargins 1 365,038 0.27
Azeris 16 6,770,403 0.24
Lezgins 1 466,006 0.21
Avars 1 600,989 0.17
Bashkirs 2 1,449,157 0.14
Moldovans 3 3,352,352 0.09
Kyrgyz 2 2,528,946 0.08
Tatars 4 6,648,760 0.06
Germans 1 2,038,603 0.05
Kazakhs 3 8,135,818 0.04
Russians 53 145,155,489 0.04
Ukrainians 6 44,186,006 0.01
Uzbeks 2 16,697,825 0.01
Belorussians 1 10,036,251 0.01
USSR (Total) 432 285,742,511 0.15

“Mafia is not a Russian word,” Vladimir Putin.

It would be more accurate to just call it the Eurasian Mafia. Or the Caucasian Mafia.

This includes the absolute top dogs:

Fast forwarding to the 21st century, some of the most prominent Russian mafia bosses of recent years were the Kurdish Aslan Usoyan (“Grandpa Hassan”), assassinated in January 2013 by a competing kingpin rumored to be either the Georgian Tariel Oniani or the Azeri Rovshan Janiev. In the US, they had their counterparts in the Evsey Agron and Boris Goldberg; the heavily Jewish nature of the Russian mafia in the US was made clear in the 2005 movie Lord of War.

Georgians are particularly well represented:

Georgia always had a disproportionately high number of crime bosses and still has a majority of the 700 or so still operating in the post-Soviet space and western Georgia (Kutaisi clan) is particularly well represented. …

The Russian criminal subculture of the thieves-in-law disproportionately included ethnic Georgians. During the 1970s Brezhnev stagnation, corrupt officials increasingly turned to the criminal underworld to source black market supplies. However, the Thieves Code explicitly forbade cooperation of any kind with the authorities, and at a 1982 summit of thieves in Tbilisi, the secret society was split in two, with Georgian thieves favouring closer collaboration with officials while this motion was opposed by Slavic ‘purists’.

otar-botkoveli

In this respect, the latest Deus Ex game was commendably accurate, in that its East European organized crime group was in fact highly Georgianized.

 
• Category: Race/Ethnicity • Tags: Crime, Race and Crime, Russia 
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europe-fertility-immigration

Convenient summary h/t Ivan Vladimirov.

Ireland and Iceland look to be in the best shape. While Ireland is one of Europe’s most religious countries, Iceland is one of the least (“0% of Icelanders aged 25 or younger believe world was created by God“).

Adjusting for fertility non-EU immigrants also substantially smooths – indeed, probably almost removes – the TFR differential between Western and Eastern Europe.

Note also that in countries with a long history of immigration, such as France, there will be a still small but rapidly growing – and presumably, still higher TFR than average – demographic of non-EU ancestry that are now getting counted as “native.”

How could Russia fare in this picture? Its TFR reached a local peak of 1.78 children per woman in 2015, the year of the above survey – that’s equivalent to the native rate in France and Sweden, the two highest TFR countries other than Ireland and Iceland. Its main group of non-natives are Central Asians, who don’t appear to be reproducing much within Russia itself (since immigration tends to be temporary and dominated by males), so they wouldn’t change the figures much.

However, certain small ethnic minority groups are substantially more fertile (primarily, Chechens, Tuvans, Ingush, Dagestanis) and will make a discernible if modest statistical difference. Based on census results, there is good reason to believe that the difference between ethnic Russian and total Russian TFR is around 0.08 children per woman, so ethnic Russian TFR would have been around 1.70 in 2015 – almost exactly the same as in Latvia and Lithuania.

 
• Category: Economics • Tags: Europe, Fertility, Immigration 
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There’s nothing particularly new or interesting per se in the 37 page indictment of 13 Russian nationals, including its head Evgeny Prigozhin, for “meddling” in the US elections through online trolling.

The existence of the Internet Research Agency – or “Olgino”, as it is known in Russia, after the location of the first “troll factory” (since moved to Savushkina Street, Saint-Petersburg) – has been widely known in Russia for half a decade, thanks entirely to Russian journalists. Novaya Gazeta published a report on them in 2013. It is headed by Evgeny Prigozhin, a shady figure who did 12 years in a Soviet prison for robbery and fraud, but rose rapidly in the lawless 1990s in the restaurant business, and in more recent years has been entrusted with “black work” for the Kremlin. The most serious investigation about its involvement in the US elections was conducted by the Russian RBC media group, which came up with a figure of $2.3 million (that’s almost three orders of magnitude less than the combined $1.6 billion that the Clinton and Trump campaigns spent).

Moreover, as with the sanctions list – and despite the high-profile, seven figure lawyers recruited by Mueller for his investigation – there is a distinct tinge of incompetence to this indictment, suggesting a lack of conscientiousness and/or Russia expertise at the Department of Justice.

Here is what Andrey Zakharov, one of the co-authors of the original Russian RBC report, had to say about this in an interview with WaPo:

The other staff mentioned are very incidental. I mean, it seems like they put down all the names they could get. Some were people who worked there in 2014 — but most of these guys didn’t work for the troll factory for a long time. They didn’t even work there during the elections. Like Krylova, she didn’t work there then. [Aleksandra Krylova is one of the two named Internet Research Agency employees the indictment said traveled to the United States in 2014.]

It looks like they just took some employees from the that American department whose names they could get. But the American department was like 90 people. So my reaction was that, for me, it was like that curious list of oligarchs and Kremlin authorities where they put the whole Forbes list and the whole Kremlin administration on it. It’s very strange.

So it’s easy to make fun of this and slot it down as just another episode in the slapstick sitcom that is American domestic politics. As Alexander Mercouris optimistically points out, the indictment is “entirely declamatory,” since (1) there is zero chance that any Russian named in the indictment will be extradited, and (2) there are no claims that any member of the Trump campaign colluded with any of the people in the indictment.

I am considerably more pessimistic.

First, at the end of the day, free speech is free speech – what difference does it make even if it is done on the Kremlin’s payroll, or with the help of botnets? (Neither of which, incidentally, has been rigorously proven). This represents a radical retreat from the principles of the First Amendment, and one of that isn’t just going to impact Russians in the US and foreigners. With this new normal, mocking and trolling politicians remains all well and good – but only so long as the Russians (Chinese, etc.) aren’t behind it. And to ascertain whether or not that is indeed the case, you need investigations – investigations that will be overwhelmingly targeted against enemies of the centrist establishment from both Left and the Right. There is already a lot of squealing from Blue Checkmark Twitter and /r/politics on how the Russians aided Jill Stein and even Bernie Sanders.

Second, it expands the claimed sphere of American global jurisdiction beyond just espionage (Wikileaks/Julian Assange) to include – for all intents and purposes – the criminalization of foreign commentary on American politics during election years.

This is not an exaggeration.

While the Kremlin is obviously supportive of the Internet Research Agency, it has taken care to keep itself at arms’ length from it, and as with Wagner, no formal ties have ever been demonstrated; consequently, the indictment itself stops short of naming Putin or any Russian official figures. The flip side is that since so many Russians apparently work for or coordinate with the Kremlin in an official capacity, there is a new norm getting established that all Russians are suspect, the burden of proof is on them to demonstrate otherwise. As Leonid Bershidsky points out, this may result in Russians in the US facing “increasing scrutiny when applying for jobs, bank accounts and other attributes of a normal life in the US – and the burden of proof that they are not Kremlin agents will be on them.”

However, one might argue that Russians in the US at least generally made their own decision to live in the US, which implies acceptance of All-American norms (and if that comes to include entrenched Russophobia, that’s too bad; they are free to leave if they don’t like it). The same cannot be said about Russians living in Russia, who never even plan to set foot in the US. But while Russia will not extradite anybody in the indictment, the same cannot be said of American satellite countries, which include most of Europe. The people working at the troll factory are young, Anglophone, and not poor; it is almost inevitable than sooner or later one of them will set foot in such a country, and presumably more likely than not that they will be arrested and extradited. In this scenario, Russia can be expected to do as little (that is to say, nothing) for them as it did for the Wagner mercenaries – coincidentally, another outfit “curated” by Prigozhin – murdered by Americans in Deir ez-Zor a couple of weeks ago.

And apart from monetary compensation, there’s ultimately not that much separating a Savushkina troll from any regular shitposter in Russia or anywhere else in the world outside the US.

PS. NBC News recently released a database of more than 200,000 tweets [.csv] that Twitter claimed constuted “malicious activity” from subsequently suspended Russia linked accounts during the 2016 US elections.

I notice that the “stars” of the Russia watching and Alt Right world get nary a mention. Noted Kremlin troll and bête noire of Western neoliberals Mark Sleboda gets 2 mentions. Mercouris – zero. Peter Lavelle – one. The journalist Bryan MacDonald – zero. Richard B. Spencer – twice (quite sad from Putler, “godfather of extreme nationalism” ala Hillary Clinton). His wife Nina Byzantina (Kouprianova) – twice. Valentina Lisitsa, the musician no platformed by the Toronto Symphony Orchestra for her support of Russian on the Crimea – a barely more respectable five times. Yours truly – zero times. In the meantime, affirmative action Kremlinologist and Russia truther Joy Reid was “boosted” by “the Kremlin” 267 times.

 
• Category: Ideology • Tags: Russiagate, Trolling, United States 
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Emil O. W. Kirkegaard – 2018 – Is national mental sport ability a sign of intelligence? An analysis of the top players of 12 mental sports [data]

… Zambian biochemist Chanda Chisala (2016 etc.) argued that Nigerian Scrabble performance was much higher than one would expect based on its national IQ estimate (given as 71.2 by Lynn and Vanhanen). His interpretation is that the tests are missing real ability present in this and other African populations. His study, however, was not systematic and did not include many other mental sports. The purpose of this study was to systematically examine the relationship between national skill at mental sports and national cognitive ability.

Ability in mental sports is g-loaded:

… a meta-analysis of studies of chess players and non-chess players round a mean group difference of .50 d (Sala et al., 2017). In another study, Quiroga et al (Ángeles Quiroga et al., 2015; see also Foroughi, Serraino, Parasuraman, & Boehm-Davis, 2016) administered 12 video games to 188 students as well as traditional standardized tests, and found that they measured nearly identical constructs (r’s .93 to .96).

The games used to test Chinda Chisala’s thesis:

For games, we included every esport listed at https://www.esportsearnings.com/games with at least 1,000 top players. This resulted in the inclusion of 8 games: DOTA 2 (dota2), League of Legends (lol), Counter-Strike: Global Offensive (csgo), Starcraft 2 (sc2), Counter-Strike (cs), Hearthstone (hs), Overwatch (ow), and Super Smash Bros. Melee (ssbm). Furthermore, we included major non-esports: Chess, Go, Poker and Scrabble.

Controlling for population size, performance in mental sports correlated r=0.79 with Lynn and Vanhanen’s published national IQs.

iq-mental-sports

General gaming ability score and national IQ. Orange line = linear fit (top left), blue line = local regression fit (span = 1.00). Weighted by square root of population size.

Contra Chisala’s arguments that Nigeria’s IQ estimates were spuriously low due to its good performance in Scrabble, not only were its results concordant with its reported IQ levels of ~70, but it was also the poorest performing country in the world when controlling for population size.

In reality, there were actually just four major outliers. North Korea was the biggest negative outlier, presumably due to very low Internet penetration. South Africa, Brazil, and the United States were positive outliers, which Kirkegaard suggests could be a smart fraction effect.

So why Nigeria’s (relative to its IQ) outstanding performance on Scrabble?

mental-sports-factor

Because it has by far the least mental sports loading (correlation with performance in other games) out of the twelve games, less so even than go, which is almost entirely constricted to East Asia.

Kirkegaard concludes:

With regards to the arguments by Chisala concerning Nigeria and Scrabble, we find no support for mismeasured Nigerian intelligence. It is true, as he noted, that Nigerians are much better at Scrabble than one would expect (standardized residual for Scrabble is 1.55, rank 3). However, Nigerians underperform on the remaining 11 sports (all residuals are negative), and the overall factor score of Nigeria (-1.39) is about what one would expect based on the current estimates of the country’s mean cognitive ability and the relation to national IQ. Indeed, based on a linear regression with just IQ, the standardized residual for Nigeria is only -0.16, meaning that the country performs very slightly worse at mental sports in general than one would expect based on its mean national intelligence. The predicted IQ of Nigeria was 73.1 based on a nonlinear model with just game performance as the predictor, Lynn and Vanhanen’s (2012) estimate was 71.2, and a recent large-scale study (n ≈ 11k) using Raven’s Standard Progressive Matrices found a mean IQ of 65.5 (Hur, Nijenhuis, & Jeong, 2017). The anomalously high Scrabble performance is not plausibly interpreted as hidden ability, but rather as a cultural specific preference for a specific sport.

 
• Category: Race/Ethnicity • Tags: Chess, IQ, Nigeria, Psychometrics, Video Games 
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Main News

* Blog status: Main posts in the last couple of weeks:

* Large bunch of interesting books that have come out recently.

  • Heiner Rindermann with a huge (592 pages) academic synthesis of research on IQ/GDPcc in Cognitive Capitalism. Unfortunately, as a textbook, it comes with a hefty price tag. I expect to get a review copy in the next few weeks, after which I’ll tell you if it’s worth ordering.
  • Edward Dutton rehabilitating phrenology in How to Judge People by What They Look Like.
  • Bryan Caplan, Robin Hanson’s fellow GMU economist, makes The Case against Education [LibGen]. I am a couple of chapters in and I have to say that it clearly elucidates with studies many things that I have long intuitively suspected. Greg Cochran has a good review (1, 2, 3).
  • Steven Pinker argues the case for reason, science, humanism and progress in Enlightenment Now [Libgen]. If the reviews are anything to go by, it’s 3x as long as it should be as per Pinker’s trademark writing style.

* Hank Pellissier: Technoprogressive Declaration of the Transhuman Party

* Massive 800 page report/60MB PDF on longevity research. Longevity Industry Reports – 2018 – Landscape Overview 2017. Volume I – The Science of Longevity Geroscience, Policy, and Economics [summary]

* Scott Alexander’s falsifiable predictions for 2018, and for 2018-2023. I suppose I should make a note to perhaps do a Stratfor-style 5 year forecast one of these days.

***

Russia

* Latest peacekeeping plan for LDNR from the Hudson Institute calls for 20,000 soldiers + 4,000 policemen in the region staffed mainly be UN troops from “neutral” countries such as Latin America, Sweden (!)/Finland/Austria, and Kazakhstan/Belarus, which would presumably be acceptable to both Russia and the Ukraine. They would confine the NAF’s troops and weapons to “secure bases, as a first step towards demobilization or retraining in non-military roles”; act as a tripwire against Russian and Ukrainian incursions; and organize elections prior to the area’s reintegration into the Ukraine.

Meanwhile, Russian Presidential candidate Yavlinsky – a native of Lvov, who until 2016 wanted to give away Crimea unconditionally, to say nothing of the LDNR – has said that he discussed the issue of Ukraine with Putin last November, including the possibility of him replacing Surkov as Russia’s main negotiator on the Ukraine Question. Conspiracy interpretation would be that he is the perfect man to actualize “Putinsliv,” allowing the Kremlin to wash their hands off handing Donbass over to the Ukraine while branding him as the traitor.

* Bloomberg: Russian Billionaires Are Building Megaschools to Rival Eton and Exeter. I suppose it’s good that the Hogwarts worship is subsiding.

* Chronicles of Article 282:

  • This article from a whistleblower who left due to ethical reasons confirms the Center Against Extremism are working to fulfill quotas [in Russian].
  • Recursive extremism: A student got 2.5 years in jail for extremism in his doctoral dissertation on extremism [in Russian].

* A couple of pro-Kremlin HSE economists wrote an entire book arguing that corruption is a good thing [in Russian].

take-russian-sjws* Russian SJWs. “Heard more disconcerting things today about SJWization of Russian society. Is becoming politically incorrect to use the word негр (Negro), as opposed to чернокожий (black-skinned) in Lukoil; amongst <25 year old Moscow university students, esp. Navalny supporters. I believe this because I was told similar things about RT around a year ago. Russia seems fated to continue importing the shittiest aspects of Western culture.

@pachkacigaret joke:

Whataboutism 1.0: But you lynch Negroes!

Whataboutism 2.0: But you say “Negroes”!

* Yandex Taxi going into driverless cars:

***

World

* Judging from latest EIA statistics, USA likely to set an all time oil production record in 2017, barreling (heh) past the old peak in 1970 and solidifying its position as the world’s largest petroleum & other liquids producer.

It is now approaching something like 90% self-sufficiency, which is a pretty epochal event in geopolitical terms.

* Sinotriumph Chronicles:

* Bad news for Tropical Hyperborea: Longer winters are coming in reality and will partially blunt global warming for 50 years (due to possible solar minimum like in the Little Ice Age in next few decades)

***

Science & Culture

* Andres Gomez Emilsson: Every Qualia Computing Article Ever

* Rabbit: The Bearer of “Trad” News

* Blind recruitment trial to boost gender equality making things worse, study reveals

* Student Who Tried To Connect IQs To Race Is Now Under Investigation

* School shooter Nikolas Cruz has an uncanny resemblance to Le 56% Face.

***

Powerful Takes

dmitry-take-russia

An unironically powerful take. It’s just missing the word Zionist somewhere.

take-layers-within-layers

Layers within layers.

take-oliver-d-smith-woke

take-antifa-tolerance

Antifa being funny and original as always.

***

 
• Category: Miscellaneous • Tags: Open Thread, Russia, SJWs, War in Donbass 
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rybka

Timeline of The Rybka Affair:

1. Nastya Rybka (real name: Anastasia Vashukevich, from Belarus; watch her “videos” here), an escort girl who does political inverse-FEMEN “performances” (e.g. a naked protest in support of Harvey Weinstein) under the leadership of “sex trainer” Alex Lesley (real name: Alexander Kirillov, a Belorussian fraudster turned PUA-for-girls guru), did one of their typical viral video stunt at Navalny’s HQ.

2. Navalny & Co. decided to track her down out of curiosity.

3. They discovered that she had published a book in which she described – concealed under fake but obvious identities – cavorting with six other girls with Oleg Deripaska, a Yeltsin-clique oligarch who is well known for his US visa problems and being owed $17 million by Paul Manafort. Also present on board was Sergey Prikhodko, a Deputy PM of Russia and a rumored “gray cardinal” of Russian foreign policy. Although it’s nice to think otherwise, Prikhodko did not participate in any orgies; his meetings with Deripaska were business-like, and Deripaska even seemed to be afraid of Prikhodko, deferring to him and calling him “Papa,” which is very normal and not weird at all.

4. Photos and videos of this deep state tryst were soon found on her Instagram, as well as other evidence (e.g. geolocationary), which confirmed the identities of the two men, and which Navalny packaged into a video.

The funny thing is she wasn’t even a spy as such, just someone in it for the sex, money, and publicity.

As Oleg and Papa discussed high affairs of state, the Belorussian wench – entirely oblivious to political import – was texting Lesley for further seduction advice. All the security a Russian oligarch’s billions can buy!

5. You might think it would be in neither man’s interest to draw attention to an event which:

  1. Formally qualifies as corruption (though to be fair nobody in Russia would care about something so minor as a top bureaucrat getting entertained by a billionaire on his luxury yacht);
  2. Draw even more attention to what can easily be construed as a direct link in the chain from Trump’s campaign to the Russian government.

But apparently ignorant of the Streisand effect, Prihodko proclaimed his desire to deal with Navalny “man to man,” while Deripaska went even further, preparing a lawsuit for violation of privacy against Rybka and Lesley, and got a pocket court in a small town he as good as owns to demand that Instagram and YouTube remove the offending material by February 14.

6. While Instagram caved, YouTube hasn’t taken down anything, and there is no evidence to date that it is going to get blocked. I suppose Russia is not yet such a joke country as to block YouTube on the whims of a single embarrassed oligarch.

However, Navalny’s website is apparently beginning to get blocked, with not even a court order for formality’s sake.

alex-lesley

7. To put the final incarnadine cherry on the cream and meringue pie, it has just emerged that Lesley-Kirillov had a profile on the website of Dmitry Medvedev’s flagship “innovation center” Skolkovo, where this Belorussian fraudster turned gigolo was described as having the following credentials:

Director of science, ideologist, project investor. Patents in the USA, China, Russia. More than ten publications in English-language scientific periodicals (including the Springer Publishing House) on the project’s subject. Participant and speaker at the International Congresses in Harbin, Shenzhen, Hong Kong (twice), Venice, Israel, Detroit (USA, SAE), Milan. Supported by grants from DARPA and NASA. On the recommendation of American scientists, he led the structural session at 8WCEAM & 3rd ICUMAS, World Congress in Hong Kong with “Sessiom Title: PHM Cloud Claster and On-Board Recognotion Automata as Bases for Sel-Maintenance and Self-recovery Engineering” [AK: italics written as-is in English]. Author and developer of Artificial Intelligence systems with increasing K-complexity. Contacts: NASA, DARPA, Rafael, Boeing laboratory in the UK and numerous research centers at universities in the US, China, Western Europe.

I trust this needs no further comment.

It has long been obvious, even before Medvedev departed the Presidency, that the only “innovation” happening in Skolkovo pertains to stealing government money.

Meanwhile, Russia has the scientific output of Belgium and accounts for less than 0.1% of the world’s AI startups.

lesley-jungle

 
• Category: Humor • Tags: Corruption, Russia, Russiagate, WTF 
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First polls are in with all eight of the official candidates. There are no surprises.

Results of VCIOM and FOM polls, both from Feb 11 (adjusting for don’t knows, won’t votes, etc.):

VCIOM FOM
Putin 82.3% 84.2%
Zhirinovsky 6.3% 6.8%
Grudinin 8.4% 6.8%
Sobchak 1.2% 1.1%
Yavlinsky 0.9% 0.6%
Titov 0.2% 0.1%
Suraykin 0.1% 0.1%
Baburin 0.6% 0.3%

Only marginal change from what I was expected is that it seems Baburin might take sixth place instead of Titov, but the numbers are so small it doesn’t really matter anyway.

What evidently is a problem, as I have been pointing out, is projected turnout. There’s a chance it might be even lower than 60%, lower even than in the anodyne 2004 election, when nobody of even marginal significance bothered running against Putin.

So they’re evidently getting to work on this.

russia-elections-2018-ads-1

russia-elections-2018-ads-2

russia-elections-2018-ads-3

I have asked a few people about this who have been here longer than I have, and there is a general consensus that there are greater efforts to get people out to vote than in any previous election under Putin.

 
• Category: Ideology • Tags: Politics, Russia, Russian Elections 2018 
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mormon-fertility

Audacious Epigone:

This is astounding. Are Mormons the only group in the US of significant size that breeds today like the English of centuries ago did?

This is indeed very encouraging and surprising.

The main “problem” with religious high fertility is that they are duller than average. But if reproduction trends within those groups are themselves highly eugenic, then that might cancel things out.

However, some questions we need to ask before we rush off to adopt the Theocracy civic:

1. Does this apply to apply to high-religious/high-fertility groups other than Mormons? Or is this something specific to Mormonism?

2. At what age do brighter vs. duller Mormons reproduce? Tempo effects are also important.

3. Does this apply to all Mormons, or just the older generation?

4. There is considerable outflow from the LDS Church (e.g. /r/exmormon), and they tend to be the brighter ones, like “dissidents” usually are. High IQ Mormons are a select group, considering especially that this is a very constrictive religion (no tea/coffee WTF, I’d sooner be a Salafi Muslim).

To what extent does this annul the higher fertility of high IQ Mormons?

 
• Category: Race/Ethnicity • Tags: Eugenics, Fertility, Mormonism 
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Fluctuarius Argenteus (the guy who does most of the Egor Kholmogorov translations here):

Russophobe: Russians are Finno-Tatar-Mongol mongrels alien to European civilization. They hate democracy and can only be ruled with an iron fist, a situation they welcome and actively enjoy. Their rulers – Tsars, Secretaries General, Presidents, it makes no difference – were/are cruel tyrants obsessed with imperial delusions, yet were/are idolized in spite (or probably because) of this. Their men are hard drinkers, their women licentious, yet they believe themselves to be the only beacon of true civilization in the world and openly scoff at Western values. AND THAT’S TERRIBLE.

“Russophile”: Russians are Finno-Tatar-Mongol mongrels alien to European civilization. They hate democracy and can only be ruled with an iron fist, a situation they welcome and actively enjoy. Their rulers – Tsars, Secretaries General, Presidents, it makes no difference – were/are tyrants obsessed with imperial delusions, yet were/are idolized in spite (or probably because) of this. Their men are hard drinkers, their women licentious, yet they believe themselves to be the only beacon of true civilization in the world and openly scoff at Western values. AND THAT’S AWESOME.

And this, ladies of gentlemen, sums the entire variety of discourse on Russia in existence.

 
• Category: Humor • Tags: Fluctuarius Argenteus, Russia, Russophobes 
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1. On February 7, the Americans destroyed a Syrian column moving in the direction of the Coneco oil fields with artillery, wiping up the rest with helicopters. There were at least 100 deaths in the SAA, versus one lightly injured SDF soldier. Although this could be viewed as a Syrian provocation, the fact remains that it was the Americans who fired first, aiming for – and achieving – total liquidation. What’s worse, at least a few of the deaths were incurred by members of Wagner, a Russian PMC staffed mainly by Donbass vets and overly “passionary” Russians (though rumors speak of a much larger catastrophe, with “Cargo 200″ running into the hundreds; I am skeptical about these claims, for the same reason that I am skeptical of Kremlin propaganda claims about RuAF destroying hundreds of jihadists in a day’s work, but a few dozen Russian casualties are credible). “They weren’t there,” Mattis as good as smirked, trolling the kremlins with their own propaganda.

2. Turkey and TFSA continue making incremental progress into Afrin, incurring casualties larger than they likely expected, but nothing they can’t handle. Enjoys an informal, if not overt, “understanding” with the US (rumors that the US is providing AWACS support). And designs on the region may well be permanent. Erdogan: “55 percent of Afrin is Arab, 35 percent are the Kurds who were later relocated, and about seven percent are Turkmen. We aim to give Afrin back to its rightful owners.” So, ethnic cleansing by any other name. Loosen social tensions, too, by enabling Turkey to rid itself of its Arab refugees. Erdogan also openly says he will move on Manbij after that. The Turks have also established observation outposts within the current borders of the area controlled by the Idlib rebels, well to the east of the M5 motorway that was supposed to delineate Russian/Turkish zones of influence as per the Astana accords.

3. Not exactly a secret that Israel supports the southern rebels, including medical care in Israeli hospitals, and artillery and air support that have forestalled any Syrian attempts to clean out this area. Launched large-scale airstrikes in response to a single Iranian drone that drifted into Israeli airspace.

So, no, Assad/Russia/Iran are NOT moving towards any sort of “victory” in Syria.

Islamic State might have been beaten, but there is a difference between Toyota-riding bearded yahoos and serious military Powers like the US, Turkey, and Israel. The latter cannot be dislodged, and they have now effectively partitioned Syria.

syria-civil-war-2018-future-map

By the end of the year, if the military configuration looks something like on this map, they will hold Syria’s fate in their hands.

The Americans will find it trivial to cut off Iranian reinforcements. Aleppo is highly vulnerable, surrounded on almost all sides. And the Russian air presence in Khmeimim remains absolutely overawed by the resources at CENTCOM’s disposal.

Hopefully Syria doesn’t launch any more large-scale chemical weapons attacks, false flag or otherwise (admittedly, controlling for false flags is hard). Because while the kremlins might be forced to swallow the deaths of a few dozens “They’re Not There” mercenaries, explaining away RuAF hunkering down in Khmeimim as Turkish/Israeli/US-backed jihadists overrun Syria – or worse, getting themselves wiped off the face of the earth in a futile attempt to fight back – will be orders of magnitude harder.

 
• Category: Foreign Policy • Tags: Geopolitics, Syrian Civil War 
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russia-elections-2018-official-bulletin So the final official bulletin was confirmed a few days ago. Here are the candidates:

Sergey Baburin (Russian All-People’s Union)

Has an interesting history: Was elected a people’s deputy in the Supreme Soviet of Russia in 1990, and by early 1991 had become the leading contender to become its Chairman, beating out Ruslan Khasbulatov in the first round; then came the abortive August Coup, and he was sidelined as a hardliner (he was later one of only seven deputies to vote against the ratification of the Belavezha Accords in December 1991, and played a critical role in getting the Russian parliament to recognize the transfer of Crimea to the Ukraine as having been unconstitutional in 1992). But if things had gone differently in 1991, he might have played a central role in 1990s Russian politics. As it is, he faded away and is now merely “widely known in narrow circles.”

Constituency*: National-patriots, nationalists, White Guardists

Predicted share of the vote: Would do well to get 1% and beat Titov and Suraykin.

Pavel Grudinin (Communist Party)

Wrote about him here, here.

Latest development is him calling Stalin the “greatest leader in the past 100 years” in an interview with Russian YouTube star Yury Dud.

Constituency: Old Communists, Red bourgeoisie, national-patriots

Predicted share of the vote: As I expected, he seems to have capped out at around 7% in VCIOM and FOM polls (would be higher after adjusting for undecideds). Remains slightly but consistently ahead of Zhirinovsky, so will probably come second. Would do well to get 10%.

Vladimir Zhirinovsky (Liberal Democratic Party)

His platform.

Constituency: Nationalists, trolls

Predicted share of the vote: Probably around 6-7%. Would do well to beat Grudinin to second place, and is obviously trying to do so (e.g. lavishing praise on Suraykin, since he is an obvious spoiler to Grudinin).

Vladimir Putin (Independent)

No idea who this guy is, or what he’s doing here.

zog-necklace Ksenia Sobchak (Civil Initiative)

Safe stand-in for Navalny, because she has an even higher anti-rating. She has said some things that are very unpopular with ordinary people (Crimea is Ukrainian under international law; Russia is a nation of genetic refuse). But this is par for the course for Russian liberals, who do constitute a distinct voting bloc – after all, around 10% of Russians genuinely didn’t support the Crimean takeover – so this is hardly going to dent her numbers. Supports gay marriage, weed legalization. Has spent the past week doing a literal apology tour in the US.

Constituency: Young SWPL liberals, SJWs

Predicted share of the vote: Would do very well to get 4%. Still, virtually guaranteed to be fourth.

Maxim Suraykin (Communists of Russia)

Boring Komsomol activist. Not clear what his views actually are – his main shtick seems to be that Grudinin only pretends to be a Communist but is actually a capitalist fat cat who is not even a KPRF member.

Constituency: Young Communists, Euroleftists

Predicted share of the vote: He might have had a chance to eke out 1-2% if he was above Grudinin in the list, since babushkas would see the “Communist” next to his name and vote for him out of reflex. As it is, he’ll do great not to be dead last.

Boris Titov (Party of Growth)

Business rights activist, friendly with Putin. Supports Crimea, but against incorporating the LDNR into Russia.

Constituency: Too patriotic to appeal to liberals, too liberal to appeal to patriots.

Predicted share of the vote: Would do extremely well to get 1%. Will probably come sixth, but it’s ultimately a toss-up between him, Baburin, and Suraykin.

Grigory Yavlinsky (Yabloko)

A Jew from Lvov, Ukraine, he emerged from the Soviet dissident movement to become lifelong Fuhrer of Russia’s leading liberal party Yabloko, which he has headed since 1993 (no term limits for him). Expelled Navalny from the party in 2007 for being too nationalist (!). Advocates the unconditional return of Crimea to the Ukraine, decries Russia’s “imperialist” pursuit of Great Power ambitions, and came out against Putin’s recent directive to stop the mandatory teaching of the Tatar language to Russian schoolchildren in Tatarstan.

Constituency: Old liberals, dissidents

Predicted share of the vote: Will probably come fifth – would do extremely well to beat Sobchak.

***

Political Compass

My ballpark estimates:

Social Liberalism vs. Conservatism: Sobchak, Yavlinsky < (Navalny) << Grudinin < Putin, Zhirinovsky (curiously, Zhirinovsky has criticized the gay propaganda law, so he’s somewhat of a mixed quantity)

Economic Left vs. Right: Grudinin < Yavlinsky < Putin, Sobchak, Titov < Navalny. (Zhirinovsky has an eclectic mix of socialist, market, and even libertarian ideas and can’t really be classified)

Internationalism vs. Nationalism: Yavlinsky, Sobchak < Grudinin (has criticized “Russian World” concept as akin to fascism) < Putin, Navalny, Titov < Zhirinovsky, Baburin

Ukrainophilia vs. Revanchism: Yavlinsky (half-Ukrainian; wants to give Crimea back unconditionally) < (Navalny) (half-Ukrainian; insists on a second referendum in Crimea) < Sobchak (has merely said that Crimea was illegal) << Titov < Grudinin < Putin < Zhirinovsky, Baburin

Opinion Polls: Suraykin, Baburin, Titov < Yavlinsky, Sobchak < Zhirinovsky, Grudinin < Putin

* “Constituency” is considerably influenced by Natalia Kholmogorova’s schema.

 
• Category: Ideology • Tags: Politics, Russia, Russian Elections 2018 
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Number of active churches in the Russian Empire/USSR/post-Soviet space from 1900 to 2000 via the blogger genby.

russia-church-numbers

One element of Stalinist propaganda is that he presided over the rebirth of the Russian church. However, one graph is worth thousands of words, and we can immediately see that there was no such thing – there were far fewer active churches even after the Soviet regime’s war-mandated “reconciliation” with religion than there were during the NEP.

There were 29,500 active churches by 2010, and genby estimates there might be 35,000 today.

 

 
• Category: History • Tags: Religion, Russian Orthodox Church, Soviet Union 
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oecd-skills-outlook-2013

While data from various IQ tests are useful for global scale analyses (e.g. GDPcc correlations), they are far less reliable for particular countries. That’s why I’m a big fan of the OECD’s PISA assessments, which are highly standardized, have large samples from similar age groups, take place concurrently once every three years, test those aspects of intelligence most intuitively relevant to economic success (i.e. application of numeracy and literacy skills in novel situations), and enjoy strong face validity (i.e. very few “strange” results).

However, there is also the temporal dimension. All these IQ maps that you see today are almost entirely based on testing children/teenagers from the current year to 1948, the earliest year on David Becker’s database as of now (although with attempts to correct them through reference to contemporary UK standardization samples). PISA and TIMSS are rather tidier, with large, representative samples of teenagers getting tested at set ages and at set years. Still, even this isn’t perfect, because countries vary in their educational and auxological histories, which will have varying knock-on effects on the intelligence of different cohorts.

The correlations between cohorts will still be very good (after all, IQ is strongly hereditary, and the quality of the environment will itself tend to be strongly correlated to average IQ). But there will be some interesting outliers, both positive and negative. For instance, the gap between the youngest and oldest cohorts can be expected to be greater in countries such as South Korea, which transitioned from the Third World to the First in the space of half a century. It can likewise be expected to be smaller in countries like the United Kingdom, which sprang off from a high base – it started the last century as the workshop of the world, and was less damaged by WW2 than most other European countries – but plummeted in relative terms ever since. Understanding cohort dynamics will also make it possible to do, say, more fine-grained analyses between national IQ and socio-economic success.

So it’s a bit surprising that hardly any attention has been devoted to another OECD program, PIAAC (Programme for the International Assessment of Adult Competencies), which tests a range of cohorts instead of just teenagers.

The first round of the assessment in 2012 covered the following 22 countries: Australia, Austria, Canada, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Korea, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, the Slovak Republic, Spain, Sweden the United States; Chile, Greece, Indonesia, Israel, Lithuania, New Zealand, Singapore, Slovenia and Turkey joining in 2014.

The following documents/dataset refers refers to the first round of PIAAC:

Unfortunately, I have been unable to find data for the later countries in one place, though I haven’t looked very hard. It appears that the next round of PIAAC will take place in 2020.

In the rest of this post, I will highlight some of the more interesting data from there. For comprehensibility, all numbers have been converted to the IQ scale, with the England/N. Ireland average set to its traditional “Greenwich Mean” of 100 and S.D. = 15.

PIAAC 2012: Literacy, Numeracy, Average IQ

. Literacy Numeracy Average
Japan 107.1 107.3 107.2
Finland 104.5 105.7 105.1
Netherlands 103.4 105.1 104.3
Sweden 102.0 104.8 103.4
Norway 101.8 104.6 103.2
Flanders (Belgium) 100.9 105.2 103.0
Czech Republic 100.4 103.9 102.2
Slovak Republic 100.4 103.9 102.1
Estonia 101.0 103.2 102.1
Denmark 99.5 104.6 102.0
Australia 102.4 101.6 102.0
Russian Federation 100.8 102.3 101.5
Austria 99.1 103.7 101.4
Germany 99.2 102.8 101.0
Canada 100.3 101.1 100.7
Korea 100.0 100.5 100.3
England/N. Ireland (UK) 100.0 100.0 100.0
Cyprus 98.9 100.8 99.8
Poland 98.3 99.5 98.9
United States 99.2 97.5 98.4
Ireland 98.2 98.3 98.3
France 96.9 97.9 97.4
Spain 93.8 95.6 94.7
Italy 93.4 96.0 94.7
Average 100.1 101.9 101.0

No surprises here, except perhaps Korea’s figures being a bit lower than expected. We’ll come to that.

Difference in Performance: Youngest (16-24) vs. Oldest (55-65)

. Literacy Numeracy Average
Korea 14.6 14.7 14.7
Spain 11.1 10.4 10.7
France 9.9 8.8 9.3
Finland 11.1 7.4 9.2
Poland 9.7 7.5 8.6
Netherlands 10.1 7.0 8.6
Flanders (Belgium) 9.0 6.9 7.9
Austria 8.4 6.5 7.4
Italy 8.2 6.6 7.4
Estonia 7.9 5.7 6.8
Germany 7.6 5.6 6.6
Australia 6.4 5.9 6.1
Ireland 6.0 5.9 5.9
Japan 7.8 3.0 5.4
Czech Republic 5.4 4.4 4.9
Canada 4.6 5.1 4.8
Denmark 7.1 2.3 4.7
Sweden 6.1 3.0 4.5
Slovak Republic 3.0 3.8 3.4
Cyprus 1.9 4.2 3.1
Norway 3.9 1.9 2.9
United States 2.6 0.7 1.6
Russian Federation -0.2 1.8 0.8
England/N. Ireland (UK) 0.2 0.0 0.1
Average 7.3 5.6 6.4

As hypothesized, Korea has the largest cohort Flynn effect; in age-adjusted terms, while its young perform as well as the best (Japan, Netherlands, Finland), its elderly are near the back of the queue.

Incidentally, Turkey – not covered in the first round of this assessment, but I found figures for it in its national report from the second round – has a difference of 13.8 IQ points between its oldest and youngest cohorts. This makes patent sense in the context of it going from a Third World country in the 1950s, to an upper middle-income one today.

In contrast, the UK and the US – already relatively well developed countries in the 1950s, when their boomers appeared – barely eked out any increase in the ensuing fifty years.

The big exception here is Russia. As I speculated in my mega-article on Russian IQ for Sputnik and Pogrom, this may have been linked to the alcohol epidemic that began in Russia from around the mid-1960s, when life expectancy plateaued and consequently stagnated for the next half-century. It is not a big stretch to imagine there were similar dynamics in the country’s psychometric profile, with any Flynn effects from continuing development being annulled by the flood of vodka of the late Soviet era.

On the bright side, Russia’s alcohol epidemic has more or less ended, and – as I predicted back in 2012 – IQ amongst the youngest cohorts has been going up for the past decade (e.g. from 95 in PISA 2000-2009 to 99 by PISA 2015; Sugonyev’s yet unpublished military data).

Sociological observation of questionable validity: The three laggards here, the US, Russia, and the UK, are all especially (in)famous for developing a sizable lumpenproletariat class during this period (respectively, white/trailer trash, gopniks, and chavs).

Difference in Performance: Men vs. Women

. Literacy Numeracy Average
Flanders (Belgium) 2.0 4.4 3.2
Germany 1.6 4.8 3.2
Norway 2.0 4.1 3.1
Netherlands 1.2 4.6 2.9
Spain 2.0 3.5 2.7
Sweden 1.6 3.8 2.7
Canada 1.3 4.0 2.7
Australia 1.3 3.8 2.6
Ireland 1.6 3.3 2.4
England/N. Ireland (UK) 0.8 4.0 2.4
United States 0.7 3.9 2.3
Korea 1.7 2.9 2.3
Austria 0.7 3.7 2.2
Japan 0.7 3.4 2.0
Denmark 1.1 2.9 2.0
Czech Republic 1.4 2.5 1.9
France 0.6 3.0 1.8
Finland 0.7 2.8 1.8
Italy 0.1 3.0 1.5
Estonia 0.8 1.7 1.2
Cyprus -0.3 2.0 0.9
Slovak Republic -0.5 0.7 0.1
Poland -0.5 0.5 0.0
Russian Federation -1.3 -0.9 -1.1
Average 1.0 3.2 2.1

The Germanic lands – or perhaps countries characterized by the authoritarian family model – are characterized by significantly brighter males, while the Latin and Slavic lands lean in the other direction.

In Russia, it seems women are brighter, not only on average, but even in terms of numerical skills. Possibly this is also a function of Russian men having borne the brunt of the 1965-2015 alcohol epidemic.

Difference in Performance: Natives vs. Immigrants

. Literacy Numeracy Average
Sweden 15.8 16.0 15.9
Finland 16.1 13.9 15.0
Norway 13.1 15.5 14.3
Flanders (Belgium) 14.5 13.9 14.2
Korea 16.2 12.2 14.2
Netherlands 12.1 13.2 12.6
Denmark 12.8 11.9 12.4
France 10.6 12.4 11.5
England/N. Ireland (UK) 10.3 11.8 11.0
Australia 11.1 10.5 10.8
Austria 9.4 11.2 10.3
Spain 10.2 9.4 9.8
Germany 9.3 9.8 9.5
Canada 9.9 8.7 9.3
United States 9.2 6.7 8.0
Italy 8.8 6.6 7.7
Ireland 8.7 6.2 7.4
Cyprus 7.8 6.0 6.9
Estonia 4.7 2.6 3.6
Czech Republic 1.0 1.5 1.3
Slovak Republic -0.5 0.4 -0.1
Japan . . .
Poland . . .
Russian Federation . . .
Average 10.1 9.5 9.8

No surprises here, I think. Seems to correlate with the PISA data (see “Not Sending Their Best”: World Map of IQ Drop Due to Immigration).

Difference in Performance: Skilled vs. Elementary Occupations

. Literacy Numeracy Average
Austria 7.9 9.4 8.7
England/N. Ireland (UK) 7.8 9.5 8.6
Canada 7.6 9.1 8.4
United States 7.5 8.2 7.8
Sweden 7.3 8.3 7.8
France 6.1 9.3 7.7
Norway 7.6 7.7 7.7
Czech Republic 6.8 8.4 7.6
Australia 7.1 7.7 7.4
Netherlands 7.0 7.2 7.1
Italy 6.0 8.1 7.1
Flanders (Belgium) 6.3 7.3 6.8
Germany 6.0 6.8 6.4
Poland 5.9 6.9 6.4
Finland 5.4 6.7 6.0
Denmark 5.5 6.0 5.7
Korea 5.7 5.6 5.7
Spain 5.1 6.1 5.6
Estonia 4.7 6.2 5.4
Japan 3.6 6.9 5.3
Cyprus 3.3 7.1 5.2
Ireland 3.8 5.0 4.4
Slovak Republic 2.9 5.3 4.1
Russian Federation 2.1 . 2.1
Average 6.1 7.3 6.7

To maximize output and social welfare, you want to cluster your brighter people in the skilled, complex jobs of the “O-Ring economy“, while simple, “foolproof” jobs can be done by pretty much anybody reasonably effectively. It doesn’t matter if a waiter is 145 IQ or 100 IQ, but it certainly does if he’s a CEO.

As Murray and Herrnstein showed in The Bell Curve, the effectiveness of this cognitive sorting mechanism has increased by leaps and bounds in the US since the 1950s.

The PIAAC data suggests Anglos and Scandinavians are the best at this, which might be one more factor that explains their unusual economic and scientific dynamism, even relative to their IQs.

The Japanese do worse at this, possibly being held back by cultural factors (deference to age and other elements of social status).

Russia is at the very bottom of the list, suggesting highly inefficient cognitive selection. The pessimistic but plausible explanation that comes to mind is endemic corruption and nepotism.

Parting Thoughts

1. In particular, we need a more serious, in-depth analysis of the PIAAC data. Conversion of disparate tables floating about in PDF and Excel format on the Internet into one database.

2. In general, greater focus on tracking IQ across all relevant dimensions (nations; subregions; time; cohorts) to enable deeper, finer-grained economic/demographic analysis.

 
• Category: Economics • Tags: Flynn Effect, IQ, Psychometrics 
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Look, I realize Elon Musk is really cool and all, but this latest is just not that significant. The Falcon Heavy can carry 63 tons into orbit – but only if the rocket isn’t reused. If it is, it’s just a sad 8 tons [for GTO launches]. That already rules out commercial applications involving very expensive payloads (e.g. most satellites), so long as reliability remains significantly worse than for proven workhorses like the Soyuz (97% success rate) or the Ariane (95%).

More importantly, 10 ton or even 100 ton payloads aren’t gonna cut it if we are serious about establishing a LARGE, autonomous Mars colony that could credibly serve as a long-term refuge from terrestrial existential risks.

I.e. we need something like this:

doom-2016-9

Instead of some crappy campsite at 0.376g:

mars-base-martian

So how do we go about this?

Today, there are just two more or less realistic (for now) methods to move millions of tons of material into space.

Space Elevator

Cool and all, but discussions begin and end with an intractable problem: The materials needed to build it are either too weak, or too ridiculously expensive.

Highly vulnerable to accident and sabotage (and sabotage disguised as accident) as well. At orbital speeds, even a small wayward satellite can really wreck your day.

superorion-7 Nuclear pulse propulsion

Has been technically feasible since when it was first proposed in the 1946 by Stanislaw Ulam, and developed into workable designs by Ted Taylor and Freeman Dyson in the late 1950s.

Basic idea: Mount spacecraft/payload onto a pusher plate, and explode a series of shaped nuclear charges to accelerate the thing into space. You could explode them in rapid succession if sudden acceleration is of no concern (cargo only), or in spaced out intervals if carrying human crews. There was a good description of how riding an Orion craft might feel like in Stephen Baxter’s Ark.

Atomic Rockets has an extremely comprehensive article on Project Orion.

8 miserly tons? Fuhgeddaboutit! Even the most modest Project Orion design from 1959 could support 1,300 tons, which is an order of magnitude greater than the most powerful heavy launch rockets either then or now.

There are almost no limits to what can be achieved – if anything, it is small Orion craft that are more of a challenge than large ones.

Orion drive spacecraft scale up quite easily. However, unlike other propulsion systems, they do not scale down gracefully. Surprisingly it is much more of an engineering challenge to make a small Orion. It is difficult to make a nuclear explosive below a certain yield in kilotons, and small nuclear explosives waste most of their uranium or plutonium. But it is relatively easy to make them as huge as you want, just pile on the megatons. So in the 1960′s when General Atomic made their first pass at a design, it was for a titanic 4,000 metric ton monster.

At the extreme end, there was the Super Orion design, able to carry a payload of 8 million tons (including 3 million tons of cargo) – that’s six orders of magnitude greater than the Falcon “Heavy”. Brian Wang notes that this is equivalent to about 30 supercarriers. Supercarriers are small towns in themselves, able to autonomously support thousands of human lives for months on end. The equivalent of 30 of them might be enough for a viable generation ship.

In between these extremes, there were a wide variety of possible configurations and propulsion methods.

One particularly crazed individual even made a design for propulsion based on a continuously detonating stream of radioactive water. (Yes you read that right).

Then there are the military applications:

When the Orion nuclear pulse propulsion concept was being developed, the researchers at General Atomic were interested in an interplanetary research vessel. But the US Air Force was not. They thought the 4,000 ton version of the Orion would be right sized for an interplanetary warship, armed to the teeth.

And when they said armed, they meant ARMED. It had enough nuclear bombs to devastate an entire continent (500 twenty-megaton city-killer warheads), 5-inch Naval cannon turrets, six hypersonic landing boats, and several hundred of the dreaded Casaba Howitzer weapons — which are basically ray guns that shoot nuclear flame (the technical term is “nuclear shaped charge”).

This basically a 4,000 ton Orion with the entire payload shell jam-packed with as many weapons as they could possibly stuff inside.

Keep in mind that this is a realistic design. It could actually be built.

This never came to be thanks to a cabal of Communists sapping the nation’s precious bodily fluids the very weak President Kennedy getting horrified by this assortment of weaponry… somehow I don’t think Trump would have had this problem.

Anyhow, the main problem is ofc fallout. Or rather, the hysterical propaganda around it.

However, there is a recent report that suggests ways of minimizing the fallout from an ORION doing a ground lift-off (or a, wait for it, “blast-off” {rimshot}). Apparently if the launch pad is a large piece of armor plate with a coating of graphite there is little or no fallout.

By which they mean, little or no ground dirt irradiated by neutrons and transformed into deadly fallout and spread the the four winds.

There is another problem, though, ironically because the pulse units use small low-yield nuclear devices.

Large devices can be made very efficient, pretty much 100% of the uranium or plutonium is consumed in the nuclear reaction. It is much more difficult with low-yield devices, especially sub-kiloton devices. Some of the plutonium is not consumed, it is merely vaporized and sprayed into the atmosphere. Fallout, in other words. You will need to develop low-yield devices with 100% plutonium burn-up, or use fusion devices (with 100% burn-up fission triggers or with laser inertial confinement fusion triggers).

Wikipedia notes that the USSR achieved 98% fusion yield in its experiments with nuclear canal excavation:

A 100% pure fusion explosive has yet to be successfully developed, according to declassified US government documents, although relatively clean PNEs (Peaceful nuclear explosions) were tested for canal excavation by the Soviet Union in the 1970s with 98% fusion yield in the Taiga test’s 15 kiloton devices, 0.3 kilotons fission, which excavated part of the proposed Pechora–Kama Canal.

In the end, a combination of Cold War nuclear proliferation treaties and environmentalist hysteria about all things nuclear killed all these beautiful 1950s visions of nuclear trains and trucks and interstellar spaceships dead.

Considering that the nuclear taboo is now greater than ever – there are many demented national leaderships who are banning nuclear power – the chances of anyone resurrecting Project Orion must be considered very small. If anyone does it, it will most likely be either China, which doesn’t answer to demotist whining, or Russia, where the construction of floating nuclear power stations suggests that the anti-nuclear taboo is less than overwhelming.

Otherwise, the chances of us getting off this sad clump of rock in bulk and on a sustainable basis – and these two things are interlinked – must be close to zero for the foreseeable future.

 
• Category: Science • Tags: Nuclear Power, Space Exploration 
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Stream of consciousness-y post about some ideas (probably bad ones) that I have accumulated on this subject.

Food Pairings vs. Spiciness

food-pairing

Simas et al. (2017) – Food-Bridging: A New Network Construction to Unveil the Principles of Cooking

1. There are cultures that pair ingredients with shared flavor compounds, and those that contrast them instead (Ahn et al. 2011).

High food pairings:

  • North American
  • West European
  • East European
  • Latin American
  • South European

Low food pairings:

  • South-East Asian (though with they have high “food-bridging” – including ingredients in between contrasting flavors to mitigate the sharp contrast, see Simas et al. 2017)
  • South Asian (see Jaim et al. 2015, though there are regional specifics: Maharashtrian and Gujarati cuisine has the lowest food pairings, while Central Asian-influenced Mughal cuisine has the highest)
  • East Asian

Interesting pattern. A few exceptions regardless, most notable South Asians, could Caucasians and Mongoloids have evolved to generally prefer similar/assimilar flavors, respectively?

We know that this sort of thing does go on. Most famous example is ofc lactose tolerance. But Indians are also more adapted to vegetarianism (and IMO, they’re the only people who know how to do vegetarianism well).

map-world-spice

2. Different levels of spiciness (my classification as I don’t fully agree with that map).

  • Low/bland: North American, European (West, East, South), Middle Eastern
  • Intermediate: African, Central Asian, American American, Chinese (but the north and coastal areas are Low, while Sichuan is high; though that said, its hotness isn’t based on capsaicin)
  • High: South Asian, Southeast Asian (but Indonesian is intermediate)

The evolutionary drives behind this are pretty obvious. Hot, humid climes, especially in densely populated areas = more spices to prevent spoilage. No such pressing need in northern areas, where in any case salt was traditionally the key preservative. Curiously, Asians (and Africans) are more salt-sensitive than Caucasians, so this might also explain this differential (e.g. Koreans are pretty far north, but their food can be pretty spicy).

Drastically simplified, the resulting schema would look something like this:

High Food Pairing Low Food Pairing
Bland European East Asian
Hot Central American South Asian

Europeans might have made far bigger achievements in science, literature, etc. than all the world’s other civilizations put together, but we do sort of fail at cooking.

Apart from desserts and booze. I don’t think anyone even comes close to Europeans there.

Health and Russian Cuisine

There this impression that Russian cuisine is highly unhealthy.

I’m not sure if it’s really true, though.

The soups are basically a vitamin hothouse. You could probably live on just, say, sorrel soup (“green borscht”). And it’s trivial to make it ketogenic (just remove the potatoes).

kholodets

Then there’s also kholodets, which is a form of aspic. It looks disgusting to Westerners, but it’s really nothing more than a congealed meat broth soup.

French Cuisine is Overrated

I don’t dislike it by any means, but I think they just invested more than anyone else into making their food seem hip and elite.

The Brits were too self-deprecating to try.

Most likely Russia could have done the same if the Bolsheviks hadn’t forcibly “proletarianized” Russian culinary culture. Nor did they have any hope of international success amongst the American-dominated lowest common denominator, because a stolovaya can’t compete against the Mackie D or Colonel Sanders.

Hot Russians

As I have frequently noted, Russians don’t do spices. Hot chillies or cayenne aren’t even sold in the typical supermarket. To approximate the levels of hotness you get at a typical British or American Indian curry house, you have to demand and emphasize that they make it “extremely hot”/”like in India” – and even then, it’s not a sure deal. (To date, the only places that have satisfied on this front in Moscow are Khajuraho and the Moscow Deli vegetarian Indian place).

I suppose this is the result of Russian being a northern country that hasn’t been acculturated into heat like the UK and select parts of the US through Indian immigration.

OTOH, there’s still some fascinating patterns. My dad, who is pure r1a master race, doesn’t do spices at all. Hates them. I love them. So does my mom. And even her mom (my maternal grandmother) enjoys them. Even though she lived most of her life in the USSR, where the culinary culture was bland as potatoes and mayonnaise. I wonder if this could be genetic, namely, my grandmother’s Jewish and Italian maternal ancestors from Odessa.

Hopefully global warming will make Russia as hot as India by the next century (Tropical Hyperborea), with matching developments in culinary practices.

Georgian Food

Nothing to write home about, even – especially – though it had the highest prestige in the USSR, and enjoys lingering respect in modern Russia despite the proliferation of better (and cheaper) establishments from other countries.

From here:

One partial and amusing exception [to good service]: Georgian restaurants, especially those with a long pedigree for supposed “excellence.” My theory is that in the USSR, Georgian cuisine was considered to be the most exotic cuisine accessible, at least to people outside the high nomenklatura, so those establishments continued to be patronized by Soviet people, with their less demanding requirements. Since people with the Soviet mentality primarily went to restaurants to network and to show off how rich they are, as opposed to just having a good time, you tend to get much less enjoyment for the ruble at those places.

The food itself seems overrated too. Khachapuri is just bread + cheese + egg. Khinkali are another variety of dumplings – big deal. Wontons are better in soups, while pelmeni are superior as just dumplings. Adjika is a saltier and less spicy version of salsa. Really, the best thing they have is kharcho, IMO.

Food Adoption

It seems to me – in Russia, at any rate – that the only cuisines which “make it” there are from regions in broadly similar climate zones.

Successes:

  • Central European/American beer culture
  • Burgers
  • Japanese
  • Korean

Failures:

  • Indian
  • Tex Mex

Curiously, Vietnamese and Thai seem to be enjoying modest success, even though they’re southern and highly spicy (in my experience, you actually have a better chance of experiencing a nice capsaicin kick at Korean and Vietnamese establishments in Moscow than at Indian ones). Possibly on account of many Russians holidaying in those areas. But Goa is also a popular holiday and downshifting destination, but Indian food isn’t making any headway.

Biggest missing opportunity: Poutine.

There’s a place where you can get Boston clam chowder in Moscow. Ergo for philly sandwich. Several places where you can get Mac & Cheese.

No place, so far as I’m aware, where you can get poutine.

Which is pretty strange since poutine is Canadian and possibly one of the most naturally transferable foods there is so far as Russia is concerned.

Perfect bland, high caloric food for a cold northern clime.

I suspect the businessman who opens up the first poutine chain in Moscow or SPB could make quite a killing.

 
• Category: Miscellaneous • Tags: Food, Nutrition 
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kompromat-rational-wiki

Is here at last: https://rationalwiki.org/wiki/Anatoly_Karlin

It is almost certainly courtesy of Internet lolcow Oliver D. Smith (Twitter), with whom I had this short exchange a few hours before its publication:

twitter-oliver-d-smith

Although I appreciate their help in actualizing my potential, there are a number of errors that I wish to clear up.

Anatoly Karlin is a Russian alt-right, white nationalist anti-Semitic conspiracy theorist blogger who promotes racialist pseudoscience. …

Despite having political views typical of neo-Nazis and white nationalists and even speaking alongside Richard Spencer on a podium — Karlin is a crypto-Nazi, who describes himself as a non-racist “liberal race realist“.[2]Do You Believe That?

I am no mere Neo-Nazi, crypto or otherwise. I identify as the reincarnation of Mecha-Hitler from Wolfenstein 3D, my extremism is so off the charts that even Ben “Race War Now” Garrison quails before me.

However, this doesn’t preclude me from having excellent relations with the Jews. I will even be voting for one of the very best Jews on March 18.

He writes for Russia InsiderWikipedia's W.svg and UNZ Review.

I do not write for Russia Insider, they just reprint me, with my permission.

Karlin says he became a “race realist” and proponent of “HBD” (human-biodiversity) in 2012 after reading Richard Lynn; he now promotes race and IQ pseudoscience on his blog.[6]

I did not so much “become” a race realist in 2012 as that I started to openly write about racial IQ differences, specifically on how it is implausible to attribute them all to the environment.

Although I respect Lynn’s work, he had very little influence on me, because I read him after I was already familiar with the work of Charles Murray, Philippe J. Rushton, etc.

In January 2018, Karlin wrote a blog post on UNZ Review defending paedophile apologist Emil Kirkegaard, who said “a compromise is having sex with a sleeping child without them knowing it“. Karlin maintains Kirkegaard was somehow misquoted or taken out of context by so-called SJWs, when this isn’t the case.[10]

You can judge for yourself here: Inaccuracies in Rationalwiki’s (Oliver D. Smith’s) page about me.

PS. RationalWiki needs help padding out my bio:

He’s published over a thousand blog posts on UNZ Review. Lots more of his crazy views can be added to article. SkepticDave (talk) 03:31, 3 February 2018 (UTC)

Feel free to pitch in.

 
• Category: Humor • Tags: Neo-Nazis, SJWs, The AK, Trolling 
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Wikipedia:

Weismann claimed that acquired characteristics could not be inherited. Therefore, training benefits only the trained generation. Their children will not exhibit the learned improvements and, in turn, will need to be improved. “No degenerate and feeble stock will ever be converted into healthy and sound stock by the accumulated effects of education, good laws, and sanitary surroundings. Such means may render the individual members of a stock passable if not strong members of society, but the same process will have to be gone through again and again with their offspring, and this in ever-widening circles, if the stock, owing to the conditions in which society has placed it, is able to increase its numbers.”[23]

“History shows me one way, and one way only, in which a high state of civilization has been produced, namely, the struggle of race with race, and the survival of the physically and mentally fitter race. If you want to know whether the lower races of man can evolve a higher type, I fear the only course is to leave them to fight it out among themselves, and even then the struggle for existence between individual and individual, between tribe and tribe, may not be supported by that physical selection due to a particular climate on which probably so much of the Aryan’s success depended.”[24]

Pearson was known in his lifetime as a prominent “freethinker” and socialist. He gave lectures on such issues as “the woman’s question” (this was the era of the suffragist movement in the UK)[25]and upon Karl Marx. His commitment to socialism and its ideals led him to refuse the offer of being created an OBE (Officer of the Order of the British Empire) in 1920 and also to refuse a knighthood in 1935.

In The Myth of the Jewish Race[26] Raphael and Jennifer Patai cite Karl Pearson’s 1925 opposition (in the first issue of the journal Annals of Eugenics which he founded) to Jewish immigration into Britain. Pearson alleged that these immigrants “will develop into a parasitic race. [...] Taken on the average, and regarding both sexes, this alien Jewish population is somewhat inferior physically and mentally to the native population”.[27]

 

 
• Category: Humor • Tags: Alt Left, Eugenics, Statistics 
Anatoly Karlin
About Anatoly Karlin

I am a blogger, thinker, and businessman in the SF Bay Area. I’m originally from Russia, spent many years in Britain, and studied at U.C. Berkeley.

One of my tenets is that ideologies tend to suck. As such, I hesitate about attaching labels to myself. That said, if it’s really necessary, I suppose “liberal-conservative neoreactionary” would be close enough.

Though I consider myself part of the Orthodox Church, my philosophy and spiritual views are more influenced by digital physics, Gnosticism, and Russian cosmism than anything specifically Judeo-Christian.