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For the second time in a decade, there’s a wave of suicides rippling through Gunn High School, a highly competitive public school in Palo Alto, CA that sends about 20 students per year to Stanford next door. (The cheapest 3 bedroom house in Palo Alto listed on Zillow is $1.66 million.) Hanna Rosin writes in The Atlantic:

Andrew was broaching a very touchy subject, one that had come up more rudely in comments on Palo Alto Online. Heavy stress among “good kids” was the product of “a nasty competitive atmosphere contrived by unethical Tiger Mothers,” one commenter wrote. At the end of some of my conversations, a student, teacher, or counselor would look around to make sure no one was listening and then whisper a story about an Asian kid being punished or even kicked out of the house for a night after getting a B or failing to get into Stanford. I’d heard how new East Asian immigrant parents mistakenly transposed the reality of education in, say, China or Korea, which is that how you do on a single test can determine your entire future. Gunn is more than 40 percent Asian

Gunn H.S. is 44% Asian, 42% white.

, and some non-Asian parents, particularly ones who’d grown up in town when the Asian population was smaller, felt the shift was poisoning the culture of the entire school.

By late March, 42 Gunn students had been hospitalized or treated for suicidal thoughts.

But how much does Andrew Lu’s diagram explain? In the 2009–10 suicide cluster, most of the high-school kids who’d killed themselves were not Asian. In Suniya Luthar’s view, the resentment over Asian parents’ effect on Gunn’s culture was something to be aired and discussed. After all, she said, it was true that some Asian kids did face intense pressure from their parents, on top of a cultural stigma against seeking help for mental-health issues. But it was also true that non-Asians were too quick to deflect scrutiny away from themselves. Luthar’s research documenting problems among affluent kids was conducted in schools with largely white populations. And two weeks after Byron Zhu died, it was a member of a different student demographic—white, female—who, in an op‑ed for Palo Alto Online, wrote an unforgettable lament over what the headline called “The Sorrows of Young Palo Altans.”

“A piece of you cringes when you hear that your friend has been preparing for the SAT with classes since last summer, and that they’re already scoring a 2000,” wrote Carolyn Walworth, who was then a junior and Paly’s student representative to the school board. She continued:

“(And what about … the girl taking a summer immersion program to skip ahead and get into AP French her sophomore year? And that internship your best friend has with a Stanford professor?) You can’t help but slip into the system of competitive insanity … We are not teenagers. We are lifeless bodies in a system that breeds competition, hatred, and discourages teamwork and genuine learning. We lack sincere passion. We are sick … Why is that not getting through to this community? Why does this insanity that is our school district continue?”

Doesn’t sound like a ringing endorsement of the culture that Gunn’s Asian plurality have brought …

From my review of Amy Chua’s Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother in VDARE in 2011:

Chua’s ancestors were from southeastern China’s Fujian province “which is famous for producing scholars and scientists.” Traditionally, Fujianese led in the mandarin civil service exams and today in China’s college admission test. …

Chua’s rich family comes from a poor world where there’s room for only a few at the top to live well. They do what it takes to stay on top. She has inherited these worries:

“One of my greatest fears is family decline. There’s an old Chinese saying that ‘prosperity can never last for three generations.'”

Of course, 19th Century Americans had a similar saying a century ago: From shirtsleeves to shirtsleeves in three generations.

Yet this American version never had quite such a Malthusian ring to it. If a 19th Century American family fell out of riches, they weren’t in danger of Oriental poverty. They were still a 19th Century American family—with a giant new country to try their luck in.

Why has life in America generally been less stressed-out than in other parts of the world?

America has traditionally been a lot nicer place than China or the Philippines. We Americans like to dream up self-congratulatory reasons for this. Some of them might even be true. But a big reason is simply that America is less crowded—and thus less competitive.

Back in 1751, the highest achiever of all Americans, Benjamin Franklin, explained the greater happiness of life in America: because a middle-class life is more affordable for the average person in empty America than elsewhere.

Unfortunately, our elites have been working to erase that distinction.

 
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  1. The cruelty of life in the meritocratic upper class. The tragedy of the meritocracy is that the children of smart parents are inevitably likely to be dumber than their parents. If meritocratic upper class culture is built on contempt of the more middling, then children will understand they themselves are worthy of contempt.

    (Not a problem for Zuck and Gates, of course, it doesnt matter if their kids are dumb)

    • Agree: International Jew
    • Replies: @Olorin
    > The cruelty of life in the meritocratic upper class.

    Nah, actually whites and Asians commit suicide at a significantly higher rate than other races.

    > The tragedy of the meritocracy is that the children of smart parents are inevitably likely to be dumber than their parents.

    That's accurate, and it's called regression to the mean. It's not a tragedy. And it's likely one of the reasons that very smart people instinctively reproduce less: the chances of their having a kid as smart as or smarter than they are very slim.

    > If meritocratic upper class culture is built on contempt of the more middling, then children will understand they themselves are worthy of contempt.

    Nah, self-esteem or lack of it is pretty much genetically determined too. Kids hardwired to off themselves either will or weren't, but either way they're likely to have lower narcissism than, say, your average wily street dindu.

    I think we're going to find out it's very strongly the case that suicide--like learning and violent behavior--has very little to do with what parents, teachers, "society," etc., do or don't do and is nearly exclusively hardwired.

    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK107191/
    , @Kevin O'Keeffe
    "(Not a problem for Zuck and Gates, of course, it doesnt matter if their kids are dumb)"

    Stupidity, combined with access to vast riches, may often mean a quick death, whether due to drug use, drunkenly wrapping a sports car around a tree, suicidal depression brought on by the realization one has cultivated no real friends (just parasites who like your bank account), etc. I don't have a lot of experience with the wealthy segment of society, but it doesn't take a lot of imagination to see how such things might tend to work out. So I'd say it matters to the wealthy, as well as to members of the middle & working classes (but not the welfare/criminal underclass, of course), whether or not their kids are intelligent.
    , @Melendwyr
    Not quite. As Mr. Sailer himself has pointed out, you regress to the mean of your ancestors, not the totality of the population.

    The longer the smart people marry and have children with equally smart people, the less difference between their IQs (on average) and their children's IQs (on average) there will be.
  2. But a big reason is simply that America is less crowded—and thus less competitive.

    Other big reasons include constant new stream of cheap immigrant labor and a permanent black underclass. Once a family became established, it wasn’t too hard staying afloat. But immigration and less crowded also go hand in hand. When the US wasn’t crowded, land was free or very cheap. When crowded, structures built on that free cheap land generate rents, a big advantage to the descendents of the earliest arrivals. I’m obviously simplifying this, but you get what I mean.

    A related micro example of this is how Angelenos made retirement money just by selling their LA house and moving to Arizona or Washington. An average kid born today in SF or LA will never be able to buy a house in those cities without their parents’ help. Hell, just about every 20-something living in the trendy parts of town are getting help from their parents or have roommates.

    • Replies: @John Mansfield
    A dozen years back I lived in the Mar Vista neighborhood of LA, near Santa Monica and Culver City. I got to know a lot of older people who joked that they wouldn't be able to buy the house they live in if they had to buy it now, and were a bit sad that their children and grandchildren couldn't possibly afford to live near them.
  3. Peak grades? It should be easy to go around Tiger Mothers, producing neurotic high test achievers who cannot produce much new stuff that matters or be successful big time donors to universities.

    Would a university like to have the next Meryl Streep? Or Jennifer Lawrence? Yes they would. Music, dance, acting, athletics, all are viable alternatives to just a great GPA and SAT score.

    Would Harvard for example like a junior female kick boxing champion, with “good enough” (B) grades? Sure. That kick boxing champion even if she does not say, knock out Rhonda Rousey in an MMA fight, is better bet to be something important (or marry it) and that goes double for a male junior kickboxing champion.

    Even non-champion but high performing athletics/art/music if coupled with good enough (B) grades and general affability should be enough. If not, avoid the Maoist Red Guards shouting at Whitey and go online for cheaper.

    • Replies: @International Jew
    Hmm, kickboxing? Dunno. What you say might better apply to lacrosse or crew.
  4. there is a slice of high IQ male Asians who are uniquely insane even if they don’t run amok eventually. (Does anybody remember the guy who decapitated the guy using no special knife in the middle of the cafeteria at VA Tech some years back? Ppl forget that one cause it came right on the heels of the mass shooter at same who was asian too, and scant coverage I suspect was some cosmic justice after the humbling displays by asian American community after that one.) Suffice to say my experience at W&M was that this slice of Asian males Im talking about is flat out schizophrenic, and go about that way with no intervention because their asian, and ya know maybe it’s an Asian thing, and because we’ll they’re here like us, so they can’t literally be insane, right? Seems to be shoot em up computer games that really evokes it and maybe engenders it bc you wouldn’t believe how these guys would get at the library on the first floor. Does anyone know what I’m talking about? Then there was when I found out I had a secret enemy in one of my classes…

    But I think it’s not competition per se mostly but the weight of what procrastination does to your mind, and everybody knows procrastination has not gotten easier to conquer.

    My advice to ppl at competitive schools is to make yourself a weekly eager beaver during office hours. And don’t say I don’t understand this or that say I forgot what you said about that one thing or whatever, cause its not about you its about them ya know. That buys you at least a letter grade (unless I guess your STEM with no all essay tests for bs)

    Everything there is to say about high school and mental health was said by David Foster Wallace twenty years ago. Somebody round here should read it. I hear there’s a big deal of an essay coming out about that book when it’s twenty years to the day actually. Steve ‘s more an Updike guy I know but DFW took him and a couple others out back one time, and most ppl won’t believe which part in Infinite Jest is first-fist true

    • Replies: @WhatEvvs
    Do you mean his Kenyon commencement speech?
    , @Bill

    Suffice to say my experience at W&M was that this slice of Asian males Im talking about is flat out schizophrenic, and go about that way with no intervention because their asian, and ya know maybe it’s an Asian thing, and because we’ll they’re here like us, so they can’t literally be insane, right?
     
    A bit tangential to your point, but one of the sequelae of the obsession with Are Freedumbs is that it is pretty close to impossible to treat obvious lunatics without their consent. Emptying out the asylums was a great victory for liberty, doncha know. So, obvious lunatics go around without treatment not so much because they are asian as because it's basically illegal to treat them.
  5. Anonymous • Disclaimer says:

    The tragedy of the meritocracy is that the children of smart parents are inevitably likely to be dumber than their parents..

    As a gunn grad, I saw many cases where that wasn’t true. What I did see were a lot of kids who were not as driven as their parents. Myself included.

    That was in the 80’s though, and the pressure may have increased now.

    It sounds miserable now.

    My parents could buy a nice house in the neighborhood for well less than 100k in the early seventies, and it was a lot less crowded.

    • Replies: @AndrewR
    Enough about Tiger Moms. I want to read about the opposite, Manatee Moms: Americans who move to China and Korea and raise their kids with the American ethos of "do whatever makes you happy."
    , @Old Palo Altan
    You grew up there in the '80s; I did in the '50s and early '60s. I don't remember any drivenness at all. Stanford was a sleepy, beautiful place with students from good backgrounds who did their time and went on to be doctors and lawyers and bankers, just like their fathers had before them (their mothers, who might very well also have gone to Stanford, certainly did not work outside the home).
    The high schools (Gunn wasn't founded until 1964, and Paly High was considered good because Palo Alto was good, but few people one knew actually went there) which people paid attention to and hoped to go to were all private; some were boarding schools, and some were out of state and even on the East Coast. The tension, when there was any, was not on getting in, but being away from home. Our parents thought WWII had more or less settled things for ever; it certainly looked a very stable and enduring world.
    How very wrong we all were.
  6. @Ezra
    The cruelty of life in the meritocratic upper class. The tragedy of the meritocracy is that the children of smart parents are inevitably likely to be dumber than their parents. If meritocratic upper class culture is built on contempt of the more middling, then children will understand they themselves are worthy of contempt.

    (Not a problem for Zuck and Gates, of course, it doesnt matter if their kids are dumb)

    > The cruelty of life in the meritocratic upper class.

    Nah, actually whites and Asians commit suicide at a significantly higher rate than other races.

    > The tragedy of the meritocracy is that the children of smart parents are inevitably likely to be dumber than their parents.

    That’s accurate, and it’s called regression to the mean. It’s not a tragedy. And it’s likely one of the reasons that very smart people instinctively reproduce less: the chances of their having a kid as smart as or smarter than they are very slim.

    > If meritocratic upper class culture is built on contempt of the more middling, then children will understand they themselves are worthy of contempt.

    Nah, self-esteem or lack of it is pretty much genetically determined too. Kids hardwired to off themselves either will or weren’t, but either way they’re likely to have lower narcissism than, say, your average wily street dindu.

    I think we’re going to find out it’s very strongly the case that suicide–like learning and violent behavior–has very little to do with what parents, teachers, “society,” etc., do or don’t do and is nearly exclusively hardwired.

    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK107191/

    • Replies: @km
    Regression to the mean is a sampling effect. If two smart parents from smart families have children, there would be no regression to the mean of the broader population, but to the parents and grandparents in question. So if a smart white man worries about his offspring, it may be due to his choice of spouse. Beauty fades, dumb is forever.
    , @Jack D
    I think regression to the mean is misunderstood. First of all, it's regression TOWARD the mean, not to the mean. So if two 130IQ parents have a child, chances are that child will fall somewhere in between the population mean of his ethnic group and that of his parents, but not all the way back to the population mean. And sometimes it goes the other way - it's not an iron law. Two 130IQ parents have 145IQ offspring much more frequently than two 100 IQ parents.

    Second, you have a phenomenon of assortative mating going on that is pushing in the other direction - Belmont is marrying Belmont and Fishtown is marrying Fishtown. What appears to be a single population mean for whites is actually a blended mean of two increasingly distinct groups. So maybe the relevant population mean is not the mean of the general population but that of your subgroup, so you don't have that far to regress to. If you look at, for example Zuckerberg and Gates, their parents were not toothless hillbillies but professionals. Jobs was raised in a blue collar family but his birth parents were very intelligent. His father, Jandali, is from a prominent and wealthy Syrian family and has a PhD in Economics. The mean IQ of Kenyans is 71 but Obama's father was clearly much smarter and Obama did not regress all the way back to the Kenyan mean or even the mulatto mean.

  7. There’s still lots and lots of open space in America. So perhaps part of it is that our ideas about status have changed. Presumably it’s always been high status to go to a top college, but has it always been the case, for example, that to be a Supreme Court justice you need to have gone to a top law school? I don’t think so.

    • Replies: @Bill
    I think it's more the huge increase in mobility, homogenization, and cosmopolitanism. Being the most able/smartest/richest guy in your town of 500 just isn't attractive to people any more. Staying in your town of 500 doesn't feel like an obligation or even a good thing to much of anyone any more. It's a Wonderful Life is starkly alien now.
    , @DCBillS
    Open space is a matter of definition. What I regard as open space (a large area, say 5000 acres or more, where one can do as one wishes because no one else is there) has mostly disappeared from the US. This is a great loss (thanks politicians) and removes a source of creativity and renewal from our world. Try it, you might learn something. I live in DC and actually know of such a place and enjoy it greatly. Fortunately this knowledge seems to be mine alone.
    , @Kevin O'Keeffe
    "...perhaps part of it is that our ideas about status have changed. Presumably it’s always been high status to go to a top college, but has it always been the case, for example, that to be a Supreme Court justice you need to have gone to a top law school? I don’t think so."

    I think you're probably correct. Chief Justice John Roberts got both his BA & JD at Harvard. William Rehnquist got his BA at Stanford, his MA at Harvard, and returned to Stanford for his law degree. But Warren E. Burger got his BA at the University of Minnesota, and his law degree at then-St. Paul College of Law (now William Mitchell College of Law). I understand such a micro-sampling is a long way from definitive, but I suspect it does reflect a pattern ie., in the past, where you went to school gave you a boost early in life, but it was your subsequent career performance that really mattered. A graduate from some dinky law school in Oklahoma would be considered just fine for the USSC, provided he's established himself as a formidable figure within the legal profession, whereas today, I suspect its unlikely such a person would be nominated, because of the ongoing, near-fetishizing of formal credentials, and institutional prestige.
  8. Hey kid, don’t study so much. Get outside and play a sport. Maybe you have to settle for state school, but you’ll get some fresh air, sunshine, exercise, and make some friends. You’ll learn things about “teamwork” and discipline, and actually have some positive memories of your adolescence.

  9. OT: Is there a graph somewhere of ‘popular US support for military (vs diplomatic) solutions’? After Vietnam I think it cratered until Reagan, but since 9/11 has it really maintained the peak we see in the media? You’d think people would be having more doubts about the effectiveness of bombing, but those viewpoints can’t get any traction…

  10. ” I’d heard how new East Asian immigrant parents mistakenly transposed the reality of education in, say, China or Korea, which is that how you do on a single test can determine your entire future. Gunn is more than 40 percent Asian” – I don’t think they are mistaken.

    • Replies: @AndrewR
    Elaborate.
  11. el topo [AKA "darryl revok"] says:

    OT but I found this to be an especially egregious case of anti-whitism in the media.

    Bill Maher mocks whites for their increased death rate

    “middle-aged American whites are dropping like flies, overweight, depressed, poorly-dressed flies. Dropping from what? Drugs, alcohol, suicide, and possibly, trying to fit into skinny jeans. The suicide rate for whites is now four times the rate for blacks, and in the last decade, 90% of the people who tried heroin for the first time were white. It’s hard out there for a wimp, and that’s why tonight I’d like to remind white people of something very important they may have forgotten, you’re white, cheer the f*ck up.”

    • Replies: @Jefferson
    "OT but I found this to be an especially egregious case of anti-whitism in the media.

    Bill Maher mocks whites for their increased death rate

    “middle-aged American whites are dropping like flies, overweight, depressed, poorly-dressed flies. Dropping from what? Drugs, alcohol, suicide, and possibly, trying to fit into skinny jeans. The suicide rate for whites is now four times the rate for blacks, and in the last decade, 90% of the people who tried heroin for the first time were white. It’s hard out there for a wimp, and that’s why tonight I’d like to remind white people of something very important they may have forgotten, you’re white, cheer the f*ck up.”

    So Whites now are now giving Non Hispanic Native Americans a run for their money in the death by alcohol category.

    Do most of these Whites who drink themselves to death have the same low standard of living/low human development index as the Non Hispanic Native American underclass living in 3rd world reservations?

    Or is this also a major problem among middle class and upper class Whites? There is no reason a White guy who lives in Studio City or Encino should be drinking himself to death because if you live in Encino or Studio City than you are privileged. Way more privileged than White people who live in coal minor country out in the rural sticks of Kentucky and West Virginia.

    , @bomag
    Maher has a mean streak he covers with humor.

    The linked piece is a subtle slam on Blacks and Hispanics; telling them that they must REALLY be hopeless if they can't out-accomplish pathetic White people.
  12. Palo Alto reminds me of an affluent mid sized white collar Massachusetts or Connecticut town, except with a lot less Italians and way more Asians.

  13. quickmeme.com/High-Expectations-Asian-Father/page/01/

    To be or not to be? You get two b and you out of house.
    U get b on test? U asian not bsian!
    Be all you can be? why not a all you can a?
    You have a.d.d? why not a.a.a?

    • Replies: @TomSchmidt
    Ah, a great moment of levity. Thanks!
  14. @el topo
    OT but I found this to be an especially egregious case of anti-whitism in the media.

    Bill Maher mocks whites for their increased death rate

    "middle-aged American whites are dropping like flies, overweight, depressed, poorly-dressed flies. Dropping from what? Drugs, alcohol, suicide, and possibly, trying to fit into skinny jeans. The suicide rate for whites is now four times the rate for blacks, and in the last decade, 90% of the people who tried heroin for the first time were white. It’s hard out there for a wimp, and that’s why tonight I’d like to remind white people of something very important they may have forgotten, you’re white, cheer the f*ck up."

    “OT but I found this to be an especially egregious case of anti-whitism in the media.

    Bill Maher mocks whites for their increased death rate

    “middle-aged American whites are dropping like flies, overweight, depressed, poorly-dressed flies. Dropping from what? Drugs, alcohol, suicide, and possibly, trying to fit into skinny jeans. The suicide rate for whites is now four times the rate for blacks, and in the last decade, 90% of the people who tried heroin for the first time were white. It’s hard out there for a wimp, and that’s why tonight I’d like to remind white people of something very important they may have forgotten, you’re white, cheer the f*ck up.”

    So Whites now are now giving Non Hispanic Native Americans a run for their money in the death by alcohol category.

    Do most of these Whites who drink themselves to death have the same low standard of living/low human development index as the Non Hispanic Native American underclass living in 3rd world reservations?

    Or is this also a major problem among middle class and upper class Whites? There is no reason a White guy who lives in Studio City or Encino should be drinking himself to death because if you live in Encino or Studio City than you are privileged. Way more privileged than White people who live in coal minor country out in the rural sticks of Kentucky and West Virginia.

  15. @el topo
    OT but I found this to be an especially egregious case of anti-whitism in the media.

    Bill Maher mocks whites for their increased death rate

    "middle-aged American whites are dropping like flies, overweight, depressed, poorly-dressed flies. Dropping from what? Drugs, alcohol, suicide, and possibly, trying to fit into skinny jeans. The suicide rate for whites is now four times the rate for blacks, and in the last decade, 90% of the people who tried heroin for the first time were white. It’s hard out there for a wimp, and that’s why tonight I’d like to remind white people of something very important they may have forgotten, you’re white, cheer the f*ck up."

    Maher has a mean streak he covers with humor.

    The linked piece is a subtle slam on Blacks and Hispanics; telling them that they must REALLY be hopeless if they can’t out-accomplish pathetic White people.

    • Replies: @Anonymous

    Maher has a mean streak he covers with humor.
     
    For years I've thought he is a thinly-veiled sociopath.
  16. Fox News has reported that one of the Muslim mass shooters in Paris was an aspiring rapper, which is not surprising about Arab Muslim Yoofs from the housing projects of Paris love rap music as much as African American Yoofs do.

    • Replies: @Daniel Williams

    ... one of the Muslim mass shooters in Paris was an aspiring rapper ...
     
    That is hands down my favorite euphemism for black suspect. It summarizes the whole generation's character: "Poor kid just just wanted to express himself, to make his mark on the world. But he fell in with the wrong people, you know? And so the world lost what could have been a really important young rapper to the criminal justice system."

    "Aspiring rapper" also produces hilarious Google Image search results. Makes your browser look like a MENSA yearbook.
  17. @AnAnon
    " I’d heard how new East Asian immigrant parents mistakenly transposed the reality of education in, say, China or Korea, which is that how you do on a single test can determine your entire future. Gunn is more than 40 percent Asian" - I don't think they are mistaken.

    Elaborate.

    • Replies: @AnAnon
    America, the 3rd most populous nation on planet earth, is going to be just as crowded as the 1st and 2nd most populous nations(China and India). Which means that life here is going to resemble life there. On the other hand It is quite doubtful that, if America chooses to survive, that it will tolerate these groups in large enough numbers to effect conditions in the way that they are effecting them. so if they are wrong they'll probably be expelled.
    , @Lamb
    Obviously it's not the only path to success, but one pretty straightforward path is:

    -High HS GPA + SAT => Elite Undergrad, easy high GPA + High LSAT => Elite Law School => Either high paying corporate job or government

    Getting into a top undergrad is largely a function of test scores, and coming from a good undergrad opens a lot of doors.
  18. @Anonymous
    The tragedy of the meritocracy is that the children of smart parents are inevitably likely to be dumber than their parents..

    As a gunn grad, I saw many cases where that wasn't true. What I did see were a lot of kids who were not as driven as their parents. Myself included.

    That was in the 80's though, and the pressure may have increased now.

    It sounds miserable now.

    My parents could buy a nice house in the neighborhood for well less than 100k in the early seventies, and it was a lot less crowded.

    Enough about Tiger Moms. I want to read about the opposite, Manatee Moms: Americans who move to China and Korea and raise their kids with the American ethos of “do whatever makes you happy.”

    • Replies: @Anonnn
    They exist, not just White American moms, but Asian American moms and even European moms. Just about all of them send their kids to English language international schools and the kids typically apply to colleges in their home countries or the West. The parents' corporate employers usually foot the bill for the international schools. Most Western ex-pats with families in East Asia are corporate execs or married to a local, or both.

    The White students seem to get into schools slightly better than they would have, had they applied from a Stateside HS with the same grades and scores. I suspect the admissions officers understand that these applicants are "one of us." The Asians students, maybe slightly worse than their Asian counterparts in the US, unless they come from a connected family, obviously. There is probably a stigma attached to Asian applicants from Asia for past cheating scandals.

    The schools generally have good curricula, but the teacher turnover rate is horrendous. I'm not sure how it was in the past, but most of the younger teachers only became international school teachers in order to facilitate their life goal of perpetual travel. They stay a year or two and change jobs to another country. And they spend half of everyday researching their next stop. Sometimes they even leave mid-year, teaching their best lesson on commitment. Haha. The pay and benefits are much better than what ESL teachers make in the local economy. I digress.

    Most Western kids attend these types of international schools and have the typical NY or LA, not elite, but top tier private school experience.
    , @Anonymous
    One of my classmates from school is originally from Canada and she is white. She got married to one of our male classmates (also white) shortly after graduation and moved to South Korea. They have a kid now and they plan to raise their family in South Korea.
  19. • Replies: @SPMoore8
    Calling John Derbyshire, calling John Derbyshire: he should opine on the case of the Nigerian who claims to have proved the Riemann Hypothesis. He might also want to opine on the "scientific technique for detecting and tracking someone on an evil mission."
  20. Holy shit your good Steve. These poor kids nowadays have no lives. I’m 24 and partly grew up in a rich town outside of NYC. Not Greenwich, but similar. Kids were under so much stress to succeed just to stay upper middle class that they had zero life. And, just by the law of number obviously the vast majority weren’t going to go to ivy league schools. Which nowadays are the only colleges worth attending. So not only were these kids robbed of an adolescence, the majority of them are now living in there parents basements bussing tables for a living. Our modern economy only rewards those at the very tippy top.

    Of course, if you’re clever you can beat the system and live a pretty good life.I didn’t even bother taking the SATs, I just packed up and moved to the West Texas oilfields and made bank. It crashed but I’ve got a nice stash still, and they gave me a cdl so I can drive a ups truck in any city in America for 75,000, some cities 100k. Am I taking over the world? Maybe not, but at least I didn’t kill myself, literally and figuratively, over meaningless highschool grades. And I’m able to move out of the house, which far too many arent able to do nowadays. So much is wrong in modern Americq, it’s hard to know where to start.

    • Replies: @jimbojones
    Way to go PistolPete. I like your attitude.
  21. @bomag
    Maher has a mean streak he covers with humor.

    The linked piece is a subtle slam on Blacks and Hispanics; telling them that they must REALLY be hopeless if they can't out-accomplish pathetic White people.

    Maher has a mean streak he covers with humor.

    For years I’ve thought he is a thinly-veiled sociopath.

    • Replies: @Danindc
    Not sure about that but he sure is ugly though...that's why the FCC won't let him on tv before midnight.

    That's an old Simpsons line.
  22. @AndrewR
    Enough about Tiger Moms. I want to read about the opposite, Manatee Moms: Americans who move to China and Korea and raise their kids with the American ethos of "do whatever makes you happy."

    They exist, not just White American moms, but Asian American moms and even European moms. Just about all of them send their kids to English language international schools and the kids typically apply to colleges in their home countries or the West. The parents’ corporate employers usually foot the bill for the international schools. Most Western ex-pats with families in East Asia are corporate execs or married to a local, or both.

    The White students seem to get into schools slightly better than they would have, had they applied from a Stateside HS with the same grades and scores. I suspect the admissions officers understand that these applicants are “one of us.” The Asians students, maybe slightly worse than their Asian counterparts in the US, unless they come from a connected family, obviously. There is probably a stigma attached to Asian applicants from Asia for past cheating scandals.

    The schools generally have good curricula, but the teacher turnover rate is horrendous. I’m not sure how it was in the past, but most of the younger teachers only became international school teachers in order to facilitate their life goal of perpetual travel. They stay a year or two and change jobs to another country. And they spend half of everyday researching their next stop. Sometimes they even leave mid-year, teaching their best lesson on commitment. Haha. The pay and benefits are much better than what ESL teachers make in the local economy. I digress.

    Most Western kids attend these types of international schools and have the typical NY or LA, not elite, but top tier private school experience.

    • Replies: @AndrewR
    What you've described is not analogous to Asians moving permanently to the US, raising their kids here and sending their kids to US colleges. My comment was tongue-in-cheek since migration is generally one way.
  23. “America has traditionally been a lot nicer place than China or the Philippines. We Americans like to dream up self-congratulatory reasons for this. Some of them might even be true. But a big reason is simply that America is less crowded—and thus less competitive.

    Back in 1751, the highest achiever of all Americans, Benjamin Franklin, explained the greater happiness of life in America: because a middle-class life is more affordable for the average person in empty America than elsewhere.”

    I don’t know about that, given the amount of space available in the US it’s very far from being crowded. Prices for goods such as g, groceries, restaurant food etc. are far lower than Europe. Outside NYC\SF\DC\Nor. VA, real estate prices in lots of decent neighbourhoods seem quite affordable for middle class couples and you get much more space for your money.

    The two biggest obstacles for a comfortable middle class life are healthcare costs and college expenses. Healthcare costs seem to be high because health insurance companies are unable to operate across the bulk of state lines and take advantage of economies of scale. College costs are high because colleges seem more intent on ratcheting up tuition costs and spending ungodly amounts on needless infrastructure and administrators rather than expanding student bodies to meet demand.

    Sensible reform could probably fix both of these. Making the first undergraduate degree three years long like it is in the UK rather than four years would be a start.

  24. @Olorin
    > The cruelty of life in the meritocratic upper class.

    Nah, actually whites and Asians commit suicide at a significantly higher rate than other races.

    > The tragedy of the meritocracy is that the children of smart parents are inevitably likely to be dumber than their parents.

    That's accurate, and it's called regression to the mean. It's not a tragedy. And it's likely one of the reasons that very smart people instinctively reproduce less: the chances of their having a kid as smart as or smarter than they are very slim.

    > If meritocratic upper class culture is built on contempt of the more middling, then children will understand they themselves are worthy of contempt.

    Nah, self-esteem or lack of it is pretty much genetically determined too. Kids hardwired to off themselves either will or weren't, but either way they're likely to have lower narcissism than, say, your average wily street dindu.

    I think we're going to find out it's very strongly the case that suicide--like learning and violent behavior--has very little to do with what parents, teachers, "society," etc., do or don't do and is nearly exclusively hardwired.

    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK107191/

    Regression to the mean is a sampling effect. If two smart parents from smart families have children, there would be no regression to the mean of the broader population, but to the parents and grandparents in question. So if a smart white man worries about his offspring, it may be due to his choice of spouse. Beauty fades, dumb is forever.

    • Replies: @Antonymous
    " So if a smart white man worries about his offspring, it may be due to his choice of spouse. Beauty fades, dumb is forever."

    Right, I've often wondered about this. The x-chromosome codes for multiple forms of intelligence (though retardation is easier to identify: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1015834/?page=1 ) and the son will inherit only the mother's copy. In light of this we have odd evolutionary strategies, favoring beauty above most else. The Bernoulli family is one of the rare instances where mathematical intelligence persisted through three generations of men.
  25. “In the 2009–10 suicide cluster, most of the high-school kids who’d killed themselves were not Asian.”

    Suicide rates vary dramatically between some races. Nationally, the rate for Native American males between ages 25-64 is 29.4 per 100,000, and for whites the rate is almost as high at 27.4. Rates for blacks, hispanics, and Asian men in that age bracket are 12.7, 11.1, and 9.5. (Numbers I looked up at CDC five years ago; the old URL is now bad.)

    • Replies: @Bill Jones
    The Black suicide number intrigued me. Maybe you should add the homicide and suicide rates together: perhaps they're being killed before they can off themselves.
  26. @Anonnn
    But a big reason is simply that America is less crowded—and thus less competitive.

    Other big reasons include constant new stream of cheap immigrant labor and a permanent black underclass. Once a family became established, it wasn't too hard staying afloat. But immigration and less crowded also go hand in hand. When the US wasn't crowded, land was free or very cheap. When crowded, structures built on that free cheap land generate rents, a big advantage to the descendents of the earliest arrivals. I'm obviously simplifying this, but you get what I mean.

    A related micro example of this is how Angelenos made retirement money just by selling their LA house and moving to Arizona or Washington. An average kid born today in SF or LA will never be able to buy a house in those cities without their parents' help. Hell, just about every 20-something living in the trendy parts of town are getting help from their parents or have roommates.

    A dozen years back I lived in the Mar Vista neighborhood of LA, near Santa Monica and Culver City. I got to know a lot of older people who joked that they wouldn’t be able to buy the house they live in if they had to buy it now, and were a bit sad that their children and grandchildren couldn’t possibly afford to live near them.

  27. @Anonymous

    Maher has a mean streak he covers with humor.
     
    For years I've thought he is a thinly-veiled sociopath.

    Not sure about that but he sure is ugly though…that’s why the FCC won’t let him on tv before midnight.

    That’s an old Simpsons line.

  28. The real problem is that our economy is skewed by the presence of a huge (~10 million) illegal immigrant work force. This, along with the relentless outsourcing of American manufacturing, ruins the supply of jobs (and the pay) at every level for Americans. In the 1960’s, relatively few Americans went to college, because jobs at all levels of the economy were reasonably plentiful, jobs that provided a lifestyle that everyone could live with.

    A factory worker with nothing more than a high school diploma could afford a nice 3-bedroom house in a decent neighborhood, a couple of cars, along with a motorboat in the driveway, or even a vacation cottage within driving distance. State college tuition for your kids, if they got in, was about $700/term (2010 dollars). Didn’t get into college? No problem, no one worried. Bright future for everyone.

    Now, if you don’t get into a very good college, and take the right classes that get you into the right graduate school, you’re doomed to being poor your entire life. No wonder these kids are so stressed.

    • Agree: BB753
    • Replies: @rod1963
    Spot on analysis.

    If we start throwing out all the H1-b's, L-1's, illegals, Visa overstays, etc, it will make life a lot easier for our children and their children. They actually have a future worth having and fighting for.

    Problem is the corporations don't want this, they want to keep flooding the country until the labor force is crushed and the middle-class wiped out.

    I personally don't see a peaceful way out. The corporations and the political class would rather die than give up on their dream.
    , @Half canadian
    Not everyone worked for an Auto manufacturer, or a steel mill. There were plenty of segments in the workforce where people scraped by.
  29. A faculty member at bronx science said there was at least one Asian suicide a year there, but not acknowledged as such by the shamed parents. Some other cause went on the death certificate or it was hushed up. It’s probably worse at stuyvesant hs, which is even more competitive and has proportionately more asians.

    Two of my kids went to bx science when it was only a third Asian and less cutthroat but they told me a few stories of the treatment of these students by their parents. Not pretty . Now that both schools are majority Asian I would never have let them attend. It’s interesting though, I remarked to my son’s physics teacher that the asians must intimidate the white kids with their awesome smartz. Not so, the white kids are smarter, just less driven he told me.

    • Replies: @Triumph104
    In the last five years Thomas Jefferson High School of Science and Technology in Fairfax, VA has seen applications from whites decrease by a third. Like Stuyvesant, TJHSST is over 70% Asian.

    http://www.fcps.edu/cco/pr/tj/tjhsstadmisstats_classof2014.pdf
    http://www.fcps.edu/cco/pr/tj/tjadmissions0415.pdf


    Not so, the white kids are smarter, just less driven he told me.
     
    From everything I have seen, the difference in academic achievement between races is simply due to effort. In the past few years social activists in New York City have been trying to figure out ways to get more blacks and Hispanics into the specialized schools. Instead of asking the students to study and prep harder and longer, ALL of the proposals involve just letting in unqualified students.
  30. “But a big reason is simply that America is less crowded—and thus less competitive”

    I think you’re letting your bias against immigration lead you astray here. In pre-industrial times, when getting a piece of the pie meant land, a big empty country would certainly offer a better shot at the good life. But what relevance does it have to wealthy industrialized nations?

    If competition for the good life was related to crowdedness, European nations shouldn’t be the ones which can afford much longer vacations than the US. And the share of the population living in the vast hinterland wouldn’t be shrinking.

    Of course, by not increasing enrollment to keep up with population, Ivy League schools have chosen to model themselves after prime real estate, ensuring that the applicant pool gets more “crowded” every year. But that’s by choice and it has no relevance to competition in the broader economy. Letting in more doctors doesn’t make the medical field more crowded as long as you also let in proportionally more patients.

    Yes, crowdedness sucks for lots of other reasons but competition isn’t necessarily one of them.

    • Replies: @AnAnon
    "But what relevance does it have to wealthy industrialized nations?" - consumption of goods becomes more efficient as population density rises. that means more workers per unit space, and less consumption of goods per person per unit space. Look at the population densities of the nations we run deficits with, and the nations we run surpluses with. crowdedness matters.

    "European nations shouldn’t be the ones which can afford much longer vacations than the US." - Europe has had subsidized defenses, and really generous trade agreements with the US to sop up their excess production for a while now. both of those are going to go away, and life will get worse there, especially since they aren't going to let their population fall thanks to immigration(muslims being the primary immigrants is just icing on the cake).
  31. @Anonnn
    They exist, not just White American moms, but Asian American moms and even European moms. Just about all of them send their kids to English language international schools and the kids typically apply to colleges in their home countries or the West. The parents' corporate employers usually foot the bill for the international schools. Most Western ex-pats with families in East Asia are corporate execs or married to a local, or both.

    The White students seem to get into schools slightly better than they would have, had they applied from a Stateside HS with the same grades and scores. I suspect the admissions officers understand that these applicants are "one of us." The Asians students, maybe slightly worse than their Asian counterparts in the US, unless they come from a connected family, obviously. There is probably a stigma attached to Asian applicants from Asia for past cheating scandals.

    The schools generally have good curricula, but the teacher turnover rate is horrendous. I'm not sure how it was in the past, but most of the younger teachers only became international school teachers in order to facilitate their life goal of perpetual travel. They stay a year or two and change jobs to another country. And they spend half of everyday researching their next stop. Sometimes they even leave mid-year, teaching their best lesson on commitment. Haha. The pay and benefits are much better than what ESL teachers make in the local economy. I digress.

    Most Western kids attend these types of international schools and have the typical NY or LA, not elite, but top tier private school experience.

    What you’ve described is not analogous to Asians moving permanently to the US, raising their kids here and sending their kids to US colleges. My comment was tongue-in-cheek since migration is generally one way.

  32. @John Mansfield
    "In the 2009–10 suicide cluster, most of the high-school kids who’d killed themselves were not Asian."

    Suicide rates vary dramatically between some races. Nationally, the rate for Native American males between ages 25-64 is 29.4 per 100,000, and for whites the rate is almost as high at 27.4. Rates for blacks, hispanics, and Asian men in that age bracket are 12.7, 11.1, and 9.5. (Numbers I looked up at CDC five years ago; the old URL is now bad.)

    The Black suicide number intrigued me. Maybe you should add the homicide and suicide rates together: perhaps they’re being killed before they can off themselves.

  33. It seems the solution is to simply opt out of the education system, which always amounted to prison for children anyway.

    In addition to home schooling, children may legally drop out of school at age 16.

    Worried about their career prospects?

    Start (or enter) a good family business. Raise your boys from an early age to work in the business. If they hate it and they’re strong-willed, they’ll find something else to do regardless.

    I am the second generation in a great family business. It’s like corporate America–but with freedom.

    And your girls you want to keep as far away from mainstream indoctrination as possible for obvious reasons…

    • Agree: Travis
    • Replies: @Ivy
    Re Girls: paraphrasing Chris Rock said, Dads, your job is to keep your daughter off the pole. If you don't keep her off the pole, you failed.
  34. The problem is partly due to people making huge amounts of money for doing nothing of value where all you have to do is get yourself on that train – Wall Street and corporate law. Sure you have to be bright to succeed but compared to somebody actually building and designing useful products like Hewlett or Packard which is the surest path to wealth?

  35. While living in Australia I worked in an area with many young professionals. The young psychologists and other allied professionals were nearly always white girls. Fantastic specimens and quite a catch. Nowadays those positions appear to be filled with East and South Asian girls. Not sure what all the white girls do these days, perhaps Communication degrees?

  36. Nobody is forcing you to live in Palo Alto and pay $1.6M for a little shack so that you can put your children into a deathmatch with the offspring of America’s foremost Tiger Moms. America is a huge country and there are lots of places where you can buy a nice home for a fraction of that amount and your kids can have a normal childhood. Nor are these places cultural backwaters. Pittsburgh, Houston, Cleveland, Minneapolis, etc. all have world class orchestras, museums, universities, etc. Even with today’s low interest rates, carrying another $1M+ of mortgage means that whatever salary differential you are getting is going to get eaten up by the cost of housing. So the folks who are doing this have no one to blame but themselves.

    • Replies: @DWB
    No, and you raise a good point.

    I suspect a lot of people less inclinded to what in my opinion can really only be called psychotic levels of cut-throat competition will make the choice you just outlined.

    My first apartment apartment after grad school was down the 85 freeway from Palo Alto - the city of Cupertino. It's almost surely known to people on this blog as being the headquarters for Apple.

    For the most part, the city has been essentially abandoned by non-Asian families. My "neighbourhood" high school was Monta Vista; today four out of five students are Asian. 16% are white, and there are -zero- black students according to current published data. The big rival across town (actually, located in San Jose, but due to the bizarre way that California draws its district boundaries, shared most of its students with the city of Cupertino) is Lynbrook High. 81% of students are Asian.

    Down the block was Faria Elementary. Its claim to fame is being the highest scoring school (on the API) in all of California. 98% of students enrolled at Faria are Asian.

    Two generations ago, Cupertino was more or less a middle-class community of modest, mid-century homes. It would have been indistinguishable from any number of towns north of the boulevard in the San Fernando Valley.

    There was, for a while, a quite nasty fight simmering just below the surface in Cupertino - resentment from the long-term locals against the radical change in culture in the schools; the intense pressure.

    That battle is over now.

    I suspect that Palo Atlo is entering a similar phase right now, if it hasn't already.

    , @Buffalo Joe
    Jack D, I have three children that live in the Cleveland area. Cleveland may have an Orchestra, Case Western and Oberlin, and the Clinic, but it also has a major crime and homicide problem. A city with a declining population of about 360K has recorded 120 murders this year, including a 5 yr. old boy, a 3yr old boy and a 5 month old girl...all the victims of drive by shootings. Throw in a dysfunctional public school system and your recommendation isn't so good.
    , @JohnnyWalker123
    The problem is that Silicon Valley is where the best software jobs are located. You can live in the Cleveland suburbs and make $80k/yr, but there's only so far you can go. If you want a chance for a high-powered senior developer position, you really have to be in SV. Your career progression is severely limited in much of flyover country.

    American society is also huge on status striving, so a lot of bright and ambitious people want to live in SV, SF, LA, NYC, and DC. The view is that only "losers" end up in Cleveland or Omaha or Fort Wayne.

    I highly reccomend a healthcare career (physician, dentist, midlevel practitioner nursing, physician assistant midlevel, pharmacist) to anyone who's ambitious and smart. The income is very high (typically six figures) and you can practice anywhere. You can be a physician or a dentist in some low-cost suburb of Des Moines. You can live well and send your kids to the decent public schools. Then your offspring can attend some moderately competitive State U and then enter med/pharm/dent/midlevel school. You don't have to worry about outsourcing, H1bs, or age discrimination in healthcare. It's pretty secure.

    Firefighting is another good career choice, but it only pays well in some cities. Being a Vegas firefighter is a very compensated job, but being a Phoenix firefighter is not. You got to choose the right city. Once you do get hired, your stuck in that city for two decades. If you get lucky and get hired into a well compensated city department (of which there are many), you can make six figures and retire after 20 years (with a pension about half your salary). Your benefits are amazing too. Firefighters get to party a lot too and have lots of cool adventures (many involving hot women). FF hires and promotes through testing, so high IQ people might think about it.

    Policing is another good career choice, with advantages/disadvantages similar to FF.

    Another good option is applying to a state or federal govt job. Decent pay and benefits (pension too). Typically there's a very slow pace of work too.
  37. @Thorfinnsson
    It seems the solution is to simply opt out of the education system, which always amounted to prison for children anyway.

    In addition to home schooling, children may legally drop out of school at age 16.

    Worried about their career prospects?

    Start (or enter) a good family business. Raise your boys from an early age to work in the business. If they hate it and they're strong-willed, they'll find something else to do regardless.

    I am the second generation in a great family business. It's like corporate America--but with freedom.

    And your girls you want to keep as far away from mainstream indoctrination as possible for obvious reasons...

    Re Girls: paraphrasing Chris Rock said, Dads, your job is to keep your daughter off the pole. If you don’t keep her off the pole, you failed.

  38. @Olorin
    > The cruelty of life in the meritocratic upper class.

    Nah, actually whites and Asians commit suicide at a significantly higher rate than other races.

    > The tragedy of the meritocracy is that the children of smart parents are inevitably likely to be dumber than their parents.

    That's accurate, and it's called regression to the mean. It's not a tragedy. And it's likely one of the reasons that very smart people instinctively reproduce less: the chances of their having a kid as smart as or smarter than they are very slim.

    > If meritocratic upper class culture is built on contempt of the more middling, then children will understand they themselves are worthy of contempt.

    Nah, self-esteem or lack of it is pretty much genetically determined too. Kids hardwired to off themselves either will or weren't, but either way they're likely to have lower narcissism than, say, your average wily street dindu.

    I think we're going to find out it's very strongly the case that suicide--like learning and violent behavior--has very little to do with what parents, teachers, "society," etc., do or don't do and is nearly exclusively hardwired.

    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK107191/

    I think regression to the mean is misunderstood. First of all, it’s regression TOWARD the mean, not to the mean. So if two 130IQ parents have a child, chances are that child will fall somewhere in between the population mean of his ethnic group and that of his parents, but not all the way back to the population mean. And sometimes it goes the other way – it’s not an iron law. Two 130IQ parents have 145IQ offspring much more frequently than two 100 IQ parents.

    Second, you have a phenomenon of assortative mating going on that is pushing in the other direction – Belmont is marrying Belmont and Fishtown is marrying Fishtown. What appears to be a single population mean for whites is actually a blended mean of two increasingly distinct groups. So maybe the relevant population mean is not the mean of the general population but that of your subgroup, so you don’t have that far to regress to. If you look at, for example Zuckerberg and Gates, their parents were not toothless hillbillies but professionals. Jobs was raised in a blue collar family but his birth parents were very intelligent. His father, Jandali, is from a prominent and wealthy Syrian family and has a PhD in Economics. The mean IQ of Kenyans is 71 but Obama’s father was clearly much smarter and Obama did not regress all the way back to the Kenyan mean or even the mulatto mean.

    • Agree: Alfa158
    • Replies: @Jimi
    Obama's mother's family are high-achieving WASPS.
  39. @robot
    OT: BBC falls for Nigerian math scam
    http://www.nairaland.com/2739995/opeyemi-enoch-not-solved-riemann

    Calling John Derbyshire, calling John Derbyshire: he should opine on the case of the Nigerian who claims to have proved the Riemann Hypothesis. He might also want to opine on the “scientific technique for detecting and tracking someone on an evil mission.”

  40. America has traditionally been a lot nicer place than China or the Philippines. We Americans like to dream up self-congratulatory reasons for this. Some of them might even be true. But a big reason is simply that America is less crowded—and thus less competitive.

    This is a key point. It begs the question: what’s so good about allowing the population of the United States to grow?

    When I was growing up, the US population was 200 million. That was my benchmark, and it sounded like a lot of people then. (It hit that mark in the late 1960s.)

    It is now over 320 million. It has increased by more than 60% in the time it took me to go from adolescence to middle age.

    Crowding is exactly the reason life sucks in Asia and people there evolved to be more cutthroat and competitive. That’s what happens when the lifeboat is full.

    That’s where we in the United States, this beautiful, open, rich land that is ours, are headed.

    So let’s just continue “invading and inviting the world,” and giving child tax credits to encourage even more births, and giving amnesty to illegal aliens, and giving citizenship to anchor babies.

    Let’s just keep on ruining the last great place on Earth.

    • Replies: @oh its just me
    Population growth is good for the economy, our elite tell us. the left has given up on true conservation of nature- they are even advaocating building over the green belts in the UK to bring in more muslims- the only time the environment is 'used' is for global warming - which is just as just as much a gimmee gimme money scheme as was the morgtage debacle - international banking and the left coming together to loot the civic classes.

    Since our elite have become mostly a global jewish and other elite- the less concern there is for national parks, the wilderness true conservation - those are north european (aka nazi) ideals.

    Do you really think we'll see concern about green and open space from an elite who mostly come from a culture that's famous for agoraphobia?
  41. @km
    Regression to the mean is a sampling effect. If two smart parents from smart families have children, there would be no regression to the mean of the broader population, but to the parents and grandparents in question. So if a smart white man worries about his offspring, it may be due to his choice of spouse. Beauty fades, dumb is forever.

    ” So if a smart white man worries about his offspring, it may be due to his choice of spouse. Beauty fades, dumb is forever.”

    Right, I’ve often wondered about this. The x-chromosome codes for multiple forms of intelligence (though retardation is easier to identify: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1015834/?page=1 ) and the son will inherit only the mother’s copy. In light of this we have odd evolutionary strategies, favoring beauty above most else. The Bernoulli family is one of the rare instances where mathematical intelligence persisted through three generations of men.

  42. Getting rid of cronyism would lessen this issue considerably. The fact is that smart people don’t need formal educations, especially with the availability of the internet. The reason you want to get into the right school is because it matters who you know more than what you know.

    Meritocracy is dead. It is why the so-called elite work so hard to limit access to the top schools to their piers and those they perceive as no threat.

  43. WhatEvvs [AKA "Internet Addict"] says:
    @Pat Casey
    there is a slice of high IQ male Asians who are uniquely insane even if they don't run amok eventually. (Does anybody remember the guy who decapitated the guy using no special knife in the middle of the cafeteria at VA Tech some years back? Ppl forget that one cause it came right on the heels of the mass shooter at same who was asian too, and scant coverage I suspect was some cosmic justice after the humbling displays by asian American community after that one.) Suffice to say my experience at W&M was that this slice of Asian males Im talking about is flat out schizophrenic, and go about that way with no intervention because their asian, and ya know maybe it's an Asian thing, and because we'll they're here like us, so they can't literally be insane, right? Seems to be shoot em up computer games that really evokes it and maybe engenders it bc you wouldn't believe how these guys would get at the library on the first floor. Does anyone know what I'm talking about? Then there was when I found out I had a secret enemy in one of my classes...

    But I think it's not competition per se mostly but the weight of what procrastination does to your mind, and everybody knows procrastination has not gotten easier to conquer.

    My advice to ppl at competitive schools is to make yourself a weekly eager beaver during office hours. And don't say I don't understand this or that say I forgot what you said about that one thing or whatever, cause its not about you its about them ya know. That buys you at least a letter grade (unless I guess your STEM with no all essay tests for bs)

    Everything there is to say about high school and mental health was said by David Foster Wallace twenty years ago. Somebody round here should read it. I hear there's a big deal of an essay coming out about that book when it's twenty years to the day actually. Steve 's more an Updike guy I know but DFW took him and a couple others out back one time, and most ppl won't believe which part in Infinite Jest is first-fist true

    Do you mean his Kenyon commencement speech?

  44. @Whiskey
    Peak grades? It should be easy to go around Tiger Mothers, producing neurotic high test achievers who cannot produce much new stuff that matters or be successful big time donors to universities.

    Would a university like to have the next Meryl Streep? Or Jennifer Lawrence? Yes they would. Music, dance, acting, athletics, all are viable alternatives to just a great GPA and SAT score.

    Would Harvard for example like a junior female kick boxing champion, with "good enough" (B) grades? Sure. That kick boxing champion even if she does not say, knock out Rhonda Rousey in an MMA fight, is better bet to be something important (or marry it) and that goes double for a male junior kickboxing champion.

    Even non-champion but high performing athletics/art/music if coupled with good enough (B) grades and general affability should be enough. If not, avoid the Maoist Red Guards shouting at Whitey and go online for cheaper.

    Hmm, kickboxing? Dunno. What you say might better apply to lacrosse or crew.

  45. @PistolPete
    Holy shit your good Steve. These poor kids nowadays have no lives. I'm 24 and partly grew up in a rich town outside of NYC. Not Greenwich, but similar. Kids were under so much stress to succeed just to stay upper middle class that they had zero life. And, just by the law of number obviously the vast majority weren't going to go to ivy league schools. Which nowadays are the only colleges worth attending. So not only were these kids robbed of an adolescence, the majority of them are now living in there parents basements bussing tables for a living. Our modern economy only rewards those at the very tippy top.

    Of course, if you're clever you can beat the system and live a pretty good life.I didn't even bother taking the SATs, I just packed up and moved to the West Texas oilfields and made bank. It crashed but I've got a nice stash still, and they gave me a cdl so I can drive a ups truck in any city in America for 75,000, some cities 100k. Am I taking over the world? Maybe not, but at least I didn't kill myself, literally and figuratively, over meaningless highschool grades. And I'm able to move out of the house, which far too many arent able to do nowadays. So much is wrong in modern Americq, it's hard to know where to start.

    Way to go PistolPete. I like your attitude.

  46. @Jefferson
    Fox News has reported that one of the Muslim mass shooters in Paris was an aspiring rapper, which is not surprising about Arab Muslim Yoofs from the housing projects of Paris love rap music as much as African American Yoofs do.

    … one of the Muslim mass shooters in Paris was an aspiring rapper

    That is hands down my favorite euphemism for black suspect. It summarizes the whole generation’s character: “Poor kid just just wanted to express himself, to make his mark on the world. But he fell in with the wrong people, you know? And so the world lost what could have been a really important young rapper to the criminal justice system.”

    “Aspiring rapper” also produces hilarious Google Image search results. Makes your browser look like a MENSA yearbook.

    • Replies: @Anonymous
    Not necessarily. Cherif and Said Kouachi were Middle Eastern and not Black at all. They were aspiring rappers and even made their own crappy rap videos.
  47. Lots of good stuff here. First, the best business to own/operate is tutoring/test prep/college counseling. The public schools are way too stretched to help and the private schools provide very good service – but parents always think something better is out there. Plus, you can make $$$ if you’re a teacher and tutor on the side. The best job is to work 2-5 years in the Stanford undergraduate admissions office, then hang out a shingle as a “college counselor.”

    The biggest irony is the research from a mile or two away at Stanford; start classes later, homework isn’t effective, etc. The majority of parents don’t care – and no school wants to be the real-time experiment in case it doesn’t work. http://news.stanford.edu/news/2014/march/too-much-homework-031014.html

  48. @Jack D
    Nobody is forcing you to live in Palo Alto and pay $1.6M for a little shack so that you can put your children into a deathmatch with the offspring of America's foremost Tiger Moms. America is a huge country and there are lots of places where you can buy a nice home for a fraction of that amount and your kids can have a normal childhood. Nor are these places cultural backwaters. Pittsburgh, Houston, Cleveland, Minneapolis, etc. all have world class orchestras, museums, universities, etc. Even with today's low interest rates, carrying another $1M+ of mortgage means that whatever salary differential you are getting is going to get eaten up by the cost of housing. So the folks who are doing this have no one to blame but themselves.

    No, and you raise a good point.

    I suspect a lot of people less inclinded to what in my opinion can really only be called psychotic levels of cut-throat competition will make the choice you just outlined.

    My first apartment apartment after grad school was down the 85 freeway from Palo Alto – the city of Cupertino. It’s almost surely known to people on this blog as being the headquarters for Apple.

    For the most part, the city has been essentially abandoned by non-Asian families. My “neighbourhood” high school was Monta Vista; today four out of five students are Asian. 16% are white, and there are -zero- black students according to current published data. The big rival across town (actually, located in San Jose, but due to the bizarre way that California draws its district boundaries, shared most of its students with the city of Cupertino) is Lynbrook High. 81% of students are Asian.

    Down the block was Faria Elementary. Its claim to fame is being the highest scoring school (on the API) in all of California. 98% of students enrolled at Faria are Asian.

    Two generations ago, Cupertino was more or less a middle-class community of modest, mid-century homes. It would have been indistinguishable from any number of towns north of the boulevard in the San Fernando Valley.

    There was, for a while, a quite nasty fight simmering just below the surface in Cupertino – resentment from the long-term locals against the radical change in culture in the schools; the intense pressure.

    That battle is over now.

    I suspect that Palo Atlo is entering a similar phase right now, if it hasn’t already.

    • Replies: @Jefferson
    "For the most part, the city has been essentially abandoned by non-Asian families. My “neighbourhood” high school was Monta Vista; today four out of five students are Asian. 16% are white, and there are -zero- black students according to current published data."

    ZERO BLACK STUDENTS? That is a racist micro aggression right there. But who is to blame for the lack of Black spaces in Cupertino? Asians or Whites? Or how about just say Asians are honorary Whites in this case, so that Whitey still ends up getting all of the blame.

  49. I have a great deal of familiarity with just this kind of environment and the toll that it takes on really good and smart kids.

    Some things are missing from Steve’s comments, Rosen’s article and the comments:

    1) The parents at these schools have all been brought into a small area, literally from around the globe, because they are high achievers.
    2) The children are socially and, most likely, genetically wired to view themselves as rightly dominant.
    3) There are very few people who are naturally followers. You have Kirks, Spocks and Scotties, with no red shirts, so the Scotties, who ought to have many underlings have none and may feel like failures.
    4) In a rich community, kids who can’t dominate through brains or athletics can use money and social engineering to compete. This can get really vicious.
    5) People who grow up in this environment and then move on to elite colleges can have a seriously distorted view of the world. Some kill themselves after reaching the Ivy League. Some go on and run the State Department.

  50. But a big reason is simply that America is less crowded—and thus less competitive.

    Vermont is the epitome of rurality and slow pace in the US, but is only 3/4 as dense as the whole country, and 19 states are less dense.

    Missouri is closest to the US in density, and Texas is the median.

    California is already #11, and great tracts of the Golden Bear Republic are uninhabitable, making the rest feel like New Jersey or Connecticut.

    Or Puerto Rico, which with statehood would finish #3, and which seems more of a model for California than either the Garden or the Constitution State.

  51. @Pat Casey
    there is a slice of high IQ male Asians who are uniquely insane even if they don't run amok eventually. (Does anybody remember the guy who decapitated the guy using no special knife in the middle of the cafeteria at VA Tech some years back? Ppl forget that one cause it came right on the heels of the mass shooter at same who was asian too, and scant coverage I suspect was some cosmic justice after the humbling displays by asian American community after that one.) Suffice to say my experience at W&M was that this slice of Asian males Im talking about is flat out schizophrenic, and go about that way with no intervention because their asian, and ya know maybe it's an Asian thing, and because we'll they're here like us, so they can't literally be insane, right? Seems to be shoot em up computer games that really evokes it and maybe engenders it bc you wouldn't believe how these guys would get at the library on the first floor. Does anyone know what I'm talking about? Then there was when I found out I had a secret enemy in one of my classes...

    But I think it's not competition per se mostly but the weight of what procrastination does to your mind, and everybody knows procrastination has not gotten easier to conquer.

    My advice to ppl at competitive schools is to make yourself a weekly eager beaver during office hours. And don't say I don't understand this or that say I forgot what you said about that one thing or whatever, cause its not about you its about them ya know. That buys you at least a letter grade (unless I guess your STEM with no all essay tests for bs)

    Everything there is to say about high school and mental health was said by David Foster Wallace twenty years ago. Somebody round here should read it. I hear there's a big deal of an essay coming out about that book when it's twenty years to the day actually. Steve 's more an Updike guy I know but DFW took him and a couple others out back one time, and most ppl won't believe which part in Infinite Jest is first-fist true

    Suffice to say my experience at W&M was that this slice of Asian males Im talking about is flat out schizophrenic, and go about that way with no intervention because their asian, and ya know maybe it’s an Asian thing, and because we’ll they’re here like us, so they can’t literally be insane, right?

    A bit tangential to your point, but one of the sequelae of the obsession with Are Freedumbs is that it is pretty close to impossible to treat obvious lunatics without their consent. Emptying out the asylums was a great victory for liberty, doncha know. So, obvious lunatics go around without treatment not so much because they are asian as because it’s basically illegal to treat them.

  52. @sabril
    There's still lots and lots of open space in America. So perhaps part of it is that our ideas about status have changed. Presumably it's always been high status to go to a top college, but has it always been the case, for example, that to be a Supreme Court justice you need to have gone to a top law school? I don't think so.

    I think it’s more the huge increase in mobility, homogenization, and cosmopolitanism. Being the most able/smartest/richest guy in your town of 500 just isn’t attractive to people any more. Staying in your town of 500 doesn’t feel like an obligation or even a good thing to much of anyone any more. It’s a Wonderful Life is starkly alien now.

  53. Asians need to learn that some things are more important than grades – like not being an educated snob who looks down on manual work.

    In China 16 percent of graduates are unemployed, while only 4 percent of those who never finished high school are unemployed. Thirty percent of East Asians in Australia have degrees, yet they have 50 percent higher unemployment rates than Whites who are half as likely to have a university degree. A recent book on rich Chinese young people found a staggering 82 percent were not interested in working in their family business.

    • Replies: @Jefferson
    "Asians need to learn that some things are more important than grades – like not being an educated snob who looks down on manual work.

    In China 16 percent of graduates are unemployed, while only 4 percent of those who never finished high school are unemployed. Thirty percent of East Asians in Australia have degrees, yet they have 50 percent higher unemployment rates than Whites who are half as likely to have a university degree. A recent book on rich Chinese young people found a staggering 82 percent were not interested in working in their family business."

    What about blue collar jobs like laundromat owners and convenient store owners? Are Orientals not over represented among those professions in Australia? Those are not exactly professions for educated white collar snobs with bachelor's degrees who look down on blue collar peasants.

  54. @Hippopotamusdrome
    quickmeme.com/High-Expectations-Asian-Father/page/01/

    To be or not to be? You get two b and you out of house.
    U get b on test? U asian not bsian!
    Be all you can be? why not a all you can a?
    You have a.d.d? why not a.a.a?

    Ah, a great moment of levity. Thanks!

  55. @Ezra
    The cruelty of life in the meritocratic upper class. The tragedy of the meritocracy is that the children of smart parents are inevitably likely to be dumber than their parents. If meritocratic upper class culture is built on contempt of the more middling, then children will understand they themselves are worthy of contempt.

    (Not a problem for Zuck and Gates, of course, it doesnt matter if their kids are dumb)

    “(Not a problem for Zuck and Gates, of course, it doesnt matter if their kids are dumb)”

    Stupidity, combined with access to vast riches, may often mean a quick death, whether due to drug use, drunkenly wrapping a sports car around a tree, suicidal depression brought on by the realization one has cultivated no real friends (just parasites who like your bank account), etc. I don’t have a lot of experience with the wealthy segment of society, but it doesn’t take a lot of imagination to see how such things might tend to work out. So I’d say it matters to the wealthy, as well as to members of the middle & working classes (but not the welfare/criminal underclass, of course), whether or not their kids are intelligent.

  56. @sabril
    There's still lots and lots of open space in America. So perhaps part of it is that our ideas about status have changed. Presumably it's always been high status to go to a top college, but has it always been the case, for example, that to be a Supreme Court justice you need to have gone to a top law school? I don't think so.

    Open space is a matter of definition. What I regard as open space (a large area, say 5000 acres or more, where one can do as one wishes because no one else is there) has mostly disappeared from the US. This is a great loss (thanks politicians) and removes a source of creativity and renewal from our world. Try it, you might learn something. I live in DC and actually know of such a place and enjoy it greatly. Fortunately this knowledge seems to be mine alone.

  57. Having rolled my eyes at the Chua phenomenon, I had no idea that she endorsed Fujian

  58. @AndrewR
    Elaborate.

    America, the 3rd most populous nation on planet earth, is going to be just as crowded as the 1st and 2nd most populous nations(China and India). Which means that life here is going to resemble life there. On the other hand It is quite doubtful that, if America chooses to survive, that it will tolerate these groups in large enough numbers to effect conditions in the way that they are effecting them. so if they are wrong they’ll probably be expelled.

  59. @Anonymous
    The tragedy of the meritocracy is that the children of smart parents are inevitably likely to be dumber than their parents..

    As a gunn grad, I saw many cases where that wasn't true. What I did see were a lot of kids who were not as driven as their parents. Myself included.

    That was in the 80's though, and the pressure may have increased now.

    It sounds miserable now.

    My parents could buy a nice house in the neighborhood for well less than 100k in the early seventies, and it was a lot less crowded.

    You grew up there in the ’80s; I did in the ’50s and early ’60s. I don’t remember any drivenness at all. Stanford was a sleepy, beautiful place with students from good backgrounds who did their time and went on to be doctors and lawyers and bankers, just like their fathers had before them (their mothers, who might very well also have gone to Stanford, certainly did not work outside the home).
    The high schools (Gunn wasn’t founded until 1964, and Paly High was considered good because Palo Alto was good, but few people one knew actually went there) which people paid attention to and hoped to go to were all private; some were boarding schools, and some were out of state and even on the East Coast. The tension, when there was any, was not on getting in, but being away from home. Our parents thought WWII had more or less settled things for ever; it certainly looked a very stable and enduring world.
    How very wrong we all were.

  60. @Vinay
    "But a big reason is simply that America is less crowded—and thus less competitive"

    I think you're letting your bias against immigration lead you astray here. In pre-industrial times, when getting a piece of the pie meant land, a big empty country would certainly offer a better shot at the good life. But what relevance does it have to wealthy industrialized nations?

    If competition for the good life was related to crowdedness, European nations shouldn't be the ones which can afford much longer vacations than the US. And the share of the population living in the vast hinterland wouldn't be shrinking.

    Of course, by not increasing enrollment to keep up with population, Ivy League schools have chosen to model themselves after prime real estate, ensuring that the applicant pool gets more "crowded" every year. But that's by choice and it has no relevance to competition in the broader economy. Letting in more doctors doesn't make the medical field more crowded as long as you also let in proportionally more patients.

    Yes, crowdedness sucks for lots of other reasons but competition isn't necessarily one of them.

    “But what relevance does it have to wealthy industrialized nations?” – consumption of goods becomes more efficient as population density rises. that means more workers per unit space, and less consumption of goods per person per unit space. Look at the population densities of the nations we run deficits with, and the nations we run surpluses with. crowdedness matters.

    “European nations shouldn’t be the ones which can afford much longer vacations than the US.” – Europe has had subsidized defenses, and really generous trade agreements with the US to sop up their excess production for a while now. both of those are going to go away, and life will get worse there, especially since they aren’t going to let their population fall thanks to immigration(muslims being the primary immigrants is just icing on the cake).

  61. @sabril
    There's still lots and lots of open space in America. So perhaps part of it is that our ideas about status have changed. Presumably it's always been high status to go to a top college, but has it always been the case, for example, that to be a Supreme Court justice you need to have gone to a top law school? I don't think so.

    “…perhaps part of it is that our ideas about status have changed. Presumably it’s always been high status to go to a top college, but has it always been the case, for example, that to be a Supreme Court justice you need to have gone to a top law school? I don’t think so.”

    I think you’re probably correct. Chief Justice John Roberts got both his BA & JD at Harvard. William Rehnquist got his BA at Stanford, his MA at Harvard, and returned to Stanford for his law degree. But Warren E. Burger got his BA at the University of Minnesota, and his law degree at then-St. Paul College of Law (now William Mitchell College of Law). I understand such a micro-sampling is a long way from definitive, but I suspect it does reflect a pattern ie., in the past, where you went to school gave you a boost early in life, but it was your subsequent career performance that really mattered. A graduate from some dinky law school in Oklahoma would be considered just fine for the USSC, provided he’s established himself as a formidable figure within the legal profession, whereas today, I suspect its unlikely such a person would be nominated, because of the ongoing, near-fetishizing of formal credentials, and institutional prestige.

    • Replies: @Brutusale
    And Deval Patrick's last appointment to the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court matriculated at Tougaloo College in Mississippi.

    Her race I'll leave as an exercise for the student.
  62. @AndrewR
    Elaborate.

    Obviously it’s not the only path to success, but one pretty straightforward path is:

    -High HS GPA + SAT => Elite Undergrad, easy high GPA + High LSAT => Elite Law School => Either high paying corporate job or government

    Getting into a top undergrad is largely a function of test scores, and coming from a good undergrad opens a lot of doors.

    • Agree: AndrewR
  63. @Jack D
    I think regression to the mean is misunderstood. First of all, it's regression TOWARD the mean, not to the mean. So if two 130IQ parents have a child, chances are that child will fall somewhere in between the population mean of his ethnic group and that of his parents, but not all the way back to the population mean. And sometimes it goes the other way - it's not an iron law. Two 130IQ parents have 145IQ offspring much more frequently than two 100 IQ parents.

    Second, you have a phenomenon of assortative mating going on that is pushing in the other direction - Belmont is marrying Belmont and Fishtown is marrying Fishtown. What appears to be a single population mean for whites is actually a blended mean of two increasingly distinct groups. So maybe the relevant population mean is not the mean of the general population but that of your subgroup, so you don't have that far to regress to. If you look at, for example Zuckerberg and Gates, their parents were not toothless hillbillies but professionals. Jobs was raised in a blue collar family but his birth parents were very intelligent. His father, Jandali, is from a prominent and wealthy Syrian family and has a PhD in Economics. The mean IQ of Kenyans is 71 but Obama's father was clearly much smarter and Obama did not regress all the way back to the Kenyan mean or even the mulatto mean.

    Obama’s mother’s family are high-achieving WASPS.

  64. Sadly, I know more people, five, who lost a teenage child to suicide, than to any disease or accident. Each one came from a two parent home that I considered to be stable.

  65. @Anon7
    The real problem is that our economy is skewed by the presence of a huge (~10 million) illegal immigrant work force. This, along with the relentless outsourcing of American manufacturing, ruins the supply of jobs (and the pay) at every level for Americans. In the 1960's, relatively few Americans went to college, because jobs at all levels of the economy were reasonably plentiful, jobs that provided a lifestyle that everyone could live with.

    A factory worker with nothing more than a high school diploma could afford a nice 3-bedroom house in a decent neighborhood, a couple of cars, along with a motorboat in the driveway, or even a vacation cottage within driving distance. State college tuition for your kids, if they got in, was about $700/term (2010 dollars). Didn't get into college? No problem, no one worried. Bright future for everyone.

    Now, if you don't get into a very good college, and take the right classes that get you into the right graduate school, you're doomed to being poor your entire life. No wonder these kids are so stressed.

    Spot on analysis.

    If we start throwing out all the H1-b’s, L-1’s, illegals, Visa overstays, etc, it will make life a lot easier for our children and their children. They actually have a future worth having and fighting for.

    Problem is the corporations don’t want this, they want to keep flooding the country until the labor force is crushed and the middle-class wiped out.

    I personally don’t see a peaceful way out. The corporations and the political class would rather die than give up on their dream.

  66. Anon • Disclaimer says:

    I’d call what we’re seeing the decline of Greatest Generation values. People who’d lived through the Great Depression and World War II wanted their kids to actually be able to relax and enjoy life in the 1950s and 60s, and those kids did. But the problem was, those kids became spoiled by too much comfort, and they became the yuppies, and the yuppies liked the easy life so much and had such an easy climb to upper-middle class prosperity that they were determined to make sure their own kids stayed there. So they chose to push their kids to an insane degree, and they’ve robbed those kids of a happy childhood. The grandparents would have been wiser about what was actually important in life.

  67. @DWB
    No, and you raise a good point.

    I suspect a lot of people less inclinded to what in my opinion can really only be called psychotic levels of cut-throat competition will make the choice you just outlined.

    My first apartment apartment after grad school was down the 85 freeway from Palo Alto - the city of Cupertino. It's almost surely known to people on this blog as being the headquarters for Apple.

    For the most part, the city has been essentially abandoned by non-Asian families. My "neighbourhood" high school was Monta Vista; today four out of five students are Asian. 16% are white, and there are -zero- black students according to current published data. The big rival across town (actually, located in San Jose, but due to the bizarre way that California draws its district boundaries, shared most of its students with the city of Cupertino) is Lynbrook High. 81% of students are Asian.

    Down the block was Faria Elementary. Its claim to fame is being the highest scoring school (on the API) in all of California. 98% of students enrolled at Faria are Asian.

    Two generations ago, Cupertino was more or less a middle-class community of modest, mid-century homes. It would have been indistinguishable from any number of towns north of the boulevard in the San Fernando Valley.

    There was, for a while, a quite nasty fight simmering just below the surface in Cupertino - resentment from the long-term locals against the radical change in culture in the schools; the intense pressure.

    That battle is over now.

    I suspect that Palo Atlo is entering a similar phase right now, if it hasn't already.

    “For the most part, the city has been essentially abandoned by non-Asian families. My “neighbourhood” high school was Monta Vista; today four out of five students are Asian. 16% are white, and there are -zero- black students according to current published data.”

    ZERO BLACK STUDENTS? That is a racist micro aggression right there. But who is to blame for the lack of Black spaces in Cupertino? Asians or Whites? Or how about just say Asians are honorary Whites in this case, so that Whitey still ends up getting all of the blame.

  68. @unpc downunder
    Asians need to learn that some things are more important than grades - like not being an educated snob who looks down on manual work.

    In China 16 percent of graduates are unemployed, while only 4 percent of those who never finished high school are unemployed. Thirty percent of East Asians in Australia have degrees, yet they have 50 percent higher unemployment rates than Whites who are half as likely to have a university degree. A recent book on rich Chinese young people found a staggering 82 percent were not interested in working in their family business.

    “Asians need to learn that some things are more important than grades – like not being an educated snob who looks down on manual work.

    In China 16 percent of graduates are unemployed, while only 4 percent of those who never finished high school are unemployed. Thirty percent of East Asians in Australia have degrees, yet they have 50 percent higher unemployment rates than Whites who are half as likely to have a university degree. A recent book on rich Chinese young people found a staggering 82 percent were not interested in working in their family business.”

    What about blue collar jobs like laundromat owners and convenient store owners? Are Orientals not over represented among those professions in Australia? Those are not exactly professions for educated white collar snobs with bachelor’s degrees who look down on blue collar peasants.

  69. @Ezra
    The cruelty of life in the meritocratic upper class. The tragedy of the meritocracy is that the children of smart parents are inevitably likely to be dumber than their parents. If meritocratic upper class culture is built on contempt of the more middling, then children will understand they themselves are worthy of contempt.

    (Not a problem for Zuck and Gates, of course, it doesnt matter if their kids are dumb)

    Not quite. As Mr. Sailer himself has pointed out, you regress to the mean of your ancestors, not the totality of the population.

    The longer the smart people marry and have children with equally smart people, the less difference between their IQs (on average) and their children’s IQs (on average) there will be.

  70. Orientals bring no value to the east- they utterly lack creativity, they are rigid, inflexiable and lack critical thinking skills. They far more likely to accept authoritarian cultures and governments.

    Lastly, I find them strangely soulless – completely lacking an internalized western ethos- there is something literally inhuman about that them – robotic.

    • Agree: Jim Don Bob
  71. @Buzz Mohawk

    America has traditionally been a lot nicer place than China or the Philippines. We Americans like to dream up self-congratulatory reasons for this. Some of them might even be true. But a big reason is simply that America is less crowded—and thus less competitive.
     
    This is a key point. It begs the question: what's so good about allowing the population of the United States to grow?

    When I was growing up, the US population was 200 million. That was my benchmark, and it sounded like a lot of people then. (It hit that mark in the late 1960s.)

    It is now over 320 million. It has increased by more than 60% in the time it took me to go from adolescence to middle age.

    Crowding is exactly the reason life sucks in Asia and people there evolved to be more cutthroat and competitive. That's what happens when the lifeboat is full.

    That's where we in the United States, this beautiful, open, rich land that is ours, are headed.

    So let's just continue "invading and inviting the world," and giving child tax credits to encourage even more births, and giving amnesty to illegal aliens, and giving citizenship to anchor babies.

    Let's just keep on ruining the last great place on Earth.

    Population growth is good for the economy, our elite tell us. the left has given up on true conservation of nature- they are even advaocating building over the green belts in the UK to bring in more muslims- the only time the environment is ‘used’ is for global warming – which is just as just as much a gimmee gimme money scheme as was the morgtage debacle – international banking and the left coming together to loot the civic classes.

    Since our elite have become mostly a global jewish and other elite- the less concern there is for national parks, the wilderness true conservation – those are north european (aka nazi) ideals.

    Do you really think we’ll see concern about green and open space from an elite who mostly come from a culture that’s famous for agoraphobia?

  72. @AndrewR
    Enough about Tiger Moms. I want to read about the opposite, Manatee Moms: Americans who move to China and Korea and raise their kids with the American ethos of "do whatever makes you happy."

    One of my classmates from school is originally from Canada and she is white. She got married to one of our male classmates (also white) shortly after graduation and moved to South Korea. They have a kid now and they plan to raise their family in South Korea.

  73. @Daniel Williams

    ... one of the Muslim mass shooters in Paris was an aspiring rapper ...
     
    That is hands down my favorite euphemism for black suspect. It summarizes the whole generation's character: "Poor kid just just wanted to express himself, to make his mark on the world. But he fell in with the wrong people, you know? And so the world lost what could have been a really important young rapper to the criminal justice system."

    "Aspiring rapper" also produces hilarious Google Image search results. Makes your browser look like a MENSA yearbook.

    Not necessarily. Cherif and Said Kouachi were Middle Eastern and not Black at all. They were aspiring rappers and even made their own crappy rap videos.

  74. @Kevin O'Keeffe
    "...perhaps part of it is that our ideas about status have changed. Presumably it’s always been high status to go to a top college, but has it always been the case, for example, that to be a Supreme Court justice you need to have gone to a top law school? I don’t think so."

    I think you're probably correct. Chief Justice John Roberts got both his BA & JD at Harvard. William Rehnquist got his BA at Stanford, his MA at Harvard, and returned to Stanford for his law degree. But Warren E. Burger got his BA at the University of Minnesota, and his law degree at then-St. Paul College of Law (now William Mitchell College of Law). I understand such a micro-sampling is a long way from definitive, but I suspect it does reflect a pattern ie., in the past, where you went to school gave you a boost early in life, but it was your subsequent career performance that really mattered. A graduate from some dinky law school in Oklahoma would be considered just fine for the USSC, provided he's established himself as a formidable figure within the legal profession, whereas today, I suspect its unlikely such a person would be nominated, because of the ongoing, near-fetishizing of formal credentials, and institutional prestige.

    And Deval Patrick’s last appointment to the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court matriculated at Tougaloo College in Mississippi.

    Her race I’ll leave as an exercise for the student.

  75. @newyorker
    A faculty member at bronx science said there was at least one Asian suicide a year there, but not acknowledged as such by the shamed parents. Some other cause went on the death certificate or it was hushed up. It's probably worse at stuyvesant hs, which is even more competitive and has proportionately more asians.

    Two of my kids went to bx science when it was only a third Asian and less cutthroat but they told me a few stories of the treatment of these students by their parents. Not pretty . Now that both schools are majority Asian I would never have let them attend. It's interesting though, I remarked to my son's physics teacher that the asians must intimidate the white kids with their awesome smartz. Not so, the white kids are smarter, just less driven he told me.

    In the last five years Thomas Jefferson High School of Science and Technology in Fairfax, VA has seen applications from whites decrease by a third. Like Stuyvesant, TJHSST is over 70% Asian.

    http://www.fcps.edu/cco/pr/tj/tjhsstadmisstats_classof2014.pdf
    http://www.fcps.edu/cco/pr/tj/tjadmissions0415.pdf

    Not so, the white kids are smarter, just less driven he told me.

    From everything I have seen, the difference in academic achievement between races is simply due to effort. In the past few years social activists in New York City have been trying to figure out ways to get more blacks and Hispanics into the specialized schools. Instead of asking the students to study and prep harder and longer, ALL of the proposals involve just letting in unqualified students.

    • Replies: @Jack D
    Maybe the (slight) difference between whites and Asians is due solely to effort, but all indications are that the 1 SD gap between blacks and whites has a significant genetic element. For example, black kids adopted at birth by whites still test close to the black mean.

    Saying that the gap is solely due to lack of effort is actually demeaning to blacks. When it came to athletics, I was as bad at sports as many blacks are at academics. If you told me that this was solely due to my not trying hard enough, I would have felt demeaned. It's much better to accept people for who they are and letting them play to their strengths rather than pretending that we are all the same.
    , @ben tillman

    From everything I have seen, the difference in academic achievement between races is simply due to effort.
     
    Then you haven't been looking in the right places. Any view of a cross-section of the Black population will disabuse you of your belief.
  76. @Triumph104
    In the last five years Thomas Jefferson High School of Science and Technology in Fairfax, VA has seen applications from whites decrease by a third. Like Stuyvesant, TJHSST is over 70% Asian.

    http://www.fcps.edu/cco/pr/tj/tjhsstadmisstats_classof2014.pdf
    http://www.fcps.edu/cco/pr/tj/tjadmissions0415.pdf


    Not so, the white kids are smarter, just less driven he told me.
     
    From everything I have seen, the difference in academic achievement between races is simply due to effort. In the past few years social activists in New York City have been trying to figure out ways to get more blacks and Hispanics into the specialized schools. Instead of asking the students to study and prep harder and longer, ALL of the proposals involve just letting in unqualified students.

    Maybe the (slight) difference between whites and Asians is due solely to effort, but all indications are that the 1 SD gap between blacks and whites has a significant genetic element. For example, black kids adopted at birth by whites still test close to the black mean.

    Saying that the gap is solely due to lack of effort is actually demeaning to blacks. When it came to athletics, I was as bad at sports as many blacks are at academics. If you told me that this was solely due to my not trying hard enough, I would have felt demeaned. It’s much better to accept people for who they are and letting them play to their strengths rather than pretending that we are all the same.

  77. @Anon7
    The real problem is that our economy is skewed by the presence of a huge (~10 million) illegal immigrant work force. This, along with the relentless outsourcing of American manufacturing, ruins the supply of jobs (and the pay) at every level for Americans. In the 1960's, relatively few Americans went to college, because jobs at all levels of the economy were reasonably plentiful, jobs that provided a lifestyle that everyone could live with.

    A factory worker with nothing more than a high school diploma could afford a nice 3-bedroom house in a decent neighborhood, a couple of cars, along with a motorboat in the driveway, or even a vacation cottage within driving distance. State college tuition for your kids, if they got in, was about $700/term (2010 dollars). Didn't get into college? No problem, no one worried. Bright future for everyone.

    Now, if you don't get into a very good college, and take the right classes that get you into the right graduate school, you're doomed to being poor your entire life. No wonder these kids are so stressed.

    Not everyone worked for an Auto manufacturer, or a steel mill. There were plenty of segments in the workforce where people scraped by.

  78. I need to clarify that I’m just talking about higher functioning blacks and Hispanics. Most of them are trapped in minority schools where whatever minimal work they do is praised as near genius. It isn’t until they try to get into a selective high school or college do they realize how far behind they actually are. This could easily be solved by tracking but social activists demand that they stay in class with the misbehaving dumb-dumbs.

    Instead of complaining, the NAACP could offer test prep to the highest achieving black students. About 6,200 black students took the SHSAT last year and only 250 received offers for one of the 5000 seats. It wouldn’t be too hard to double that number. There are about 21.000 black 8th graders in NYC so I think it is possible for 500, about 2.3%, to get an offer by studying hard.

  79. Random thoughts:

    -Elliot Akama-Garren is a graduate of Gunn High School in Palo Alto and a 2015 Rhodes Scholar. He majored in biology at MIT and had a 5.0/5.0 GPA.

    -Many Asian nationals are sending their high school kids to US boarding schools. Many parents are moving to the US and buying or renting homes while their kids attend public school. This is not just California, but Bergen County, NJ, and Fairfax, VA. Bergen County and other parts of NJ have Korean Parents Associations that help Korean nationals settle in the area and act as a liaison with the public schools. In Fairfax, VA there is a huge apartment complex filled with Korean nationals. I am aware of a Chinese woman whose daughter just came to the US this summer and tested into NY’s Stuyvesant High.

    If you like high school gossip, this year there was a Korean girl who had been in the US since at least 7th grade who attended Thomas Jefferson High School of Science and Technology. She was so pressured to get into an elite school that she lied to her parents and told them that she got into Harvard and Stanford and would attend both of them, 2 years each, and after 4 years she would decide which one to get her degree from. She got tons of publicity in Korea. She even went to the visit day for admitted students and blended in with everyone else. After the story blew her father had to publicly admit that she was troubled. http://www.dcurbanmom.com/jforum/posts/list/476545.page

    In the last 25 years Arcadia High has gone from 26% to 68% Asian. This video shows the homes that Chinese nationals are buying for their kids who attend high school and college.

  80. @Jack D
    Nobody is forcing you to live in Palo Alto and pay $1.6M for a little shack so that you can put your children into a deathmatch with the offspring of America's foremost Tiger Moms. America is a huge country and there are lots of places where you can buy a nice home for a fraction of that amount and your kids can have a normal childhood. Nor are these places cultural backwaters. Pittsburgh, Houston, Cleveland, Minneapolis, etc. all have world class orchestras, museums, universities, etc. Even with today's low interest rates, carrying another $1M+ of mortgage means that whatever salary differential you are getting is going to get eaten up by the cost of housing. So the folks who are doing this have no one to blame but themselves.

    Jack D, I have three children that live in the Cleveland area. Cleveland may have an Orchestra, Case Western and Oberlin, and the Clinic, but it also has a major crime and homicide problem. A city with a declining population of about 360K has recorded 120 murders this year, including a 5 yr. old boy, a 3yr old boy and a 5 month old girl…all the victims of drive by shootings. Throw in a dysfunctional public school system and your recommendation isn’t so good.

    • Replies: @Jefferson
    "Jack D, I have three children that live in the Cleveland area. Cleveland may have an Orchestra, Case Western and Oberlin, and the Clinic, but it also has a major crime and homicide problem. A city with a declining population of about 360K has recorded 120 murders this year, including a 5 yr. old boy, a 3yr old boy and a 5 month old girl…all the victims of drive by shootings. Throw in a dysfunctional public school system and your recommendation isn’t so good."

    I have heard good things about a suburb of Cleveland called Parma. It is 93 percent White and only 2 percent Black.

    Parma is constantly ranked as one of the safest cities in the U.S to live in.
    , @JohnnyWalker123
    Cleveland has lots of good suburbs.
  81. @Buffalo Joe
    Jack D, I have three children that live in the Cleveland area. Cleveland may have an Orchestra, Case Western and Oberlin, and the Clinic, but it also has a major crime and homicide problem. A city with a declining population of about 360K has recorded 120 murders this year, including a 5 yr. old boy, a 3yr old boy and a 5 month old girl...all the victims of drive by shootings. Throw in a dysfunctional public school system and your recommendation isn't so good.

    “Jack D, I have three children that live in the Cleveland area. Cleveland may have an Orchestra, Case Western and Oberlin, and the Clinic, but it also has a major crime and homicide problem. A city with a declining population of about 360K has recorded 120 murders this year, including a 5 yr. old boy, a 3yr old boy and a 5 month old girl…all the victims of drive by shootings. Throw in a dysfunctional public school system and your recommendation isn’t so good.”

    I have heard good things about a suburb of Cleveland called Parma. It is 93 percent White and only 2 percent Black.

    Parma is constantly ranked as one of the safest cities in the U.S to live in.

  82. @Triumph104
    In the last five years Thomas Jefferson High School of Science and Technology in Fairfax, VA has seen applications from whites decrease by a third. Like Stuyvesant, TJHSST is over 70% Asian.

    http://www.fcps.edu/cco/pr/tj/tjhsstadmisstats_classof2014.pdf
    http://www.fcps.edu/cco/pr/tj/tjadmissions0415.pdf


    Not so, the white kids are smarter, just less driven he told me.
     
    From everything I have seen, the difference in academic achievement between races is simply due to effort. In the past few years social activists in New York City have been trying to figure out ways to get more blacks and Hispanics into the specialized schools. Instead of asking the students to study and prep harder and longer, ALL of the proposals involve just letting in unqualified students.

    From everything I have seen, the difference in academic achievement between races is simply due to effort.

    Then you haven’t been looking in the right places. Any view of a cross-section of the Black population will disabuse you of your belief.

  83. @Jack D
    Nobody is forcing you to live in Palo Alto and pay $1.6M for a little shack so that you can put your children into a deathmatch with the offspring of America's foremost Tiger Moms. America is a huge country and there are lots of places where you can buy a nice home for a fraction of that amount and your kids can have a normal childhood. Nor are these places cultural backwaters. Pittsburgh, Houston, Cleveland, Minneapolis, etc. all have world class orchestras, museums, universities, etc. Even with today's low interest rates, carrying another $1M+ of mortgage means that whatever salary differential you are getting is going to get eaten up by the cost of housing. So the folks who are doing this have no one to blame but themselves.

    The problem is that Silicon Valley is where the best software jobs are located. You can live in the Cleveland suburbs and make $80k/yr, but there’s only so far you can go. If you want a chance for a high-powered senior developer position, you really have to be in SV. Your career progression is severely limited in much of flyover country.

    American society is also huge on status striving, so a lot of bright and ambitious people want to live in SV, SF, LA, NYC, and DC. The view is that only “losers” end up in Cleveland or Omaha or Fort Wayne.

    I highly reccomend a healthcare career (physician, dentist, midlevel practitioner nursing, physician assistant midlevel, pharmacist) to anyone who’s ambitious and smart. The income is very high (typically six figures) and you can practice anywhere. You can be a physician or a dentist in some low-cost suburb of Des Moines. You can live well and send your kids to the decent public schools. Then your offspring can attend some moderately competitive State U and then enter med/pharm/dent/midlevel school. You don’t have to worry about outsourcing, H1bs, or age discrimination in healthcare. It’s pretty secure.

    Firefighting is another good career choice, but it only pays well in some cities. Being a Vegas firefighter is a very compensated job, but being a Phoenix firefighter is not. You got to choose the right city. Once you do get hired, your stuck in that city for two decades. If you get lucky and get hired into a well compensated city department (of which there are many), you can make six figures and retire after 20 years (with a pension about half your salary). Your benefits are amazing too. Firefighters get to party a lot too and have lots of cool adventures (many involving hot women). FF hires and promotes through testing, so high IQ people might think about it.

    Policing is another good career choice, with advantages/disadvantages similar to FF.

    Another good option is applying to a state or federal govt job. Decent pay and benefits (pension too). Typically there’s a very slow pace of work too.

    • Replies: @Jefferson
    "Policing is another good career choice, with advantages/disadvantages similar to FF."

    What are the disadvantages? Being a White police officer in a city with a high percentage of Blacks?
  84. @Buffalo Joe
    Jack D, I have three children that live in the Cleveland area. Cleveland may have an Orchestra, Case Western and Oberlin, and the Clinic, but it also has a major crime and homicide problem. A city with a declining population of about 360K has recorded 120 murders this year, including a 5 yr. old boy, a 3yr old boy and a 5 month old girl...all the victims of drive by shootings. Throw in a dysfunctional public school system and your recommendation isn't so good.

    Cleveland has lots of good suburbs.

  85. @JohnnyWalker123
    The problem is that Silicon Valley is where the best software jobs are located. You can live in the Cleveland suburbs and make $80k/yr, but there's only so far you can go. If you want a chance for a high-powered senior developer position, you really have to be in SV. Your career progression is severely limited in much of flyover country.

    American society is also huge on status striving, so a lot of bright and ambitious people want to live in SV, SF, LA, NYC, and DC. The view is that only "losers" end up in Cleveland or Omaha or Fort Wayne.

    I highly reccomend a healthcare career (physician, dentist, midlevel practitioner nursing, physician assistant midlevel, pharmacist) to anyone who's ambitious and smart. The income is very high (typically six figures) and you can practice anywhere. You can be a physician or a dentist in some low-cost suburb of Des Moines. You can live well and send your kids to the decent public schools. Then your offspring can attend some moderately competitive State U and then enter med/pharm/dent/midlevel school. You don't have to worry about outsourcing, H1bs, or age discrimination in healthcare. It's pretty secure.

    Firefighting is another good career choice, but it only pays well in some cities. Being a Vegas firefighter is a very compensated job, but being a Phoenix firefighter is not. You got to choose the right city. Once you do get hired, your stuck in that city for two decades. If you get lucky and get hired into a well compensated city department (of which there are many), you can make six figures and retire after 20 years (with a pension about half your salary). Your benefits are amazing too. Firefighters get to party a lot too and have lots of cool adventures (many involving hot women). FF hires and promotes through testing, so high IQ people might think about it.

    Policing is another good career choice, with advantages/disadvantages similar to FF.

    Another good option is applying to a state or federal govt job. Decent pay and benefits (pension too). Typically there's a very slow pace of work too.

    “Policing is another good career choice, with advantages/disadvantages similar to FF.”

    What are the disadvantages? Being a White police officer in a city with a high percentage of Blacks?

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