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From Steve Hsu’s blog, an hour long podcast conversation with his old friend Ron Unz.

 
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  1. I know Ron is smart but didn’t know his IQ is 214.

    • Agree: Endgame Napoleon
    • Replies: @bomag
    That's all?

    What a piker.
    , @Pincher Martin

    I know Ron is smart but didn’t know his IQ is 214.
     
    No IQ test ever invented can reliably validate that score. I doubt any IQ test ever invented can give us anything of value above 175. At that level of brain power, it's probably more useful to tell everyone who presumes to have that kind of mind to go invent a new branch of mathematics in the next six months - and then rank the presumptive nominees by their output in performing that task.

    I have to laugh, though, at the idea of Ron putting his IQ score on his resume. And so precise, too. Not 213. Not 215. But 214. Lol!

    , @Expletive Deleted
    Are these scores directly correlated with (amount squirreled away in USD^3 in various inviolable accounts, or more), and therefore of some real-world weighting?
    Or are they basically meaningless? Like being in MENSA, and claiming not to be scarily autistic and fundamentally disabled (not just physically)?
    I mean, have these soi-disant braniacs ever made a feckin thing in their lives, apart from noise? What do they leave behind? C'mon, tell me now. Rip me a new one.
    Reminds me of Howard Hughes, but without the engineering talent.
    , @Mark Spahn (West Seneca, NY)
    According to a scientific calculator, given a population having an average IQ of 100 with a standard deviation of 15, the proportion of people with an IQ of 214 or more is normalcdf(214,9.99E99,100,15) = 14.9346772E-15. The reciprocal of this number is 66.95826021E12 = 67 trillion. So only one person is 67 trillion is as smart as Ron Unz. He is not only the smartest person in the world; he is the smartest person in the galaxy!
    , @El Dato
    From HAL 9000 to UNZ 9000?
    , @Realist

    I know Ron is smart but didn’t know his IQ is 214.
     
    Putting your IQ on a resume is presumptuous. Interviewing employers should have ask him to prove it.
  2. O/T: No shakedown scam is complete without the proffer of it’d-be-a-shame-if-anything-happened-to-your-thriving-company protection services. It took a while, but former WH staffer and Jussie Smollett consigliere Tina Tchen’s Time’s Up grift now has its organic counterpart:

    https://abovethelaw.com/2019/05/prominent-lawyers-stepping-up-with-training-to-stop-sexual-misconduct/

  3. I know Ron is smart but didn’t know his IQ is 214.

    I didn’t know anybody’s is.

    Is that on one of the tests with a higher SD?

    • Replies: @Achmed E. Newman
    No, what it is, is that Mr. Unz has got a whole hell of a lot of adversity points that boost up his "corrected IQ". Between his having to live among a swarm of Mexicans in Silicon Valley, and the rough treatment he's been getting from, cough, cough, some, cough, of his commenters here, he gets adversity points that bring up his IQ from the high 80's to a corrected low 2 hundred and teens.

    I'm just kidding, Ron! You have the best political site for both content (disregarding the Commies), and usability that I've ever seen. With the amount of reading and writing you do, if it's not IQ, it's gotta be lots of work. Thank you, but I still hope you can take a joke!
    , @Lot
    “I didn’t know anybody’s is.”

    You are correct. Ron Unz’s claimed IQ is more than 7 standard deviations above the mean, and would be about 1 in 6 quadrillion. I don’t doubt he really thinks he is smarter than every human being who has ever lived, and is likely to live between the dawn of time and 30,000,000AD, assuming population stabilizes at the predicted 2070 level and average world IQ of 100.

    , @Pericles
    The not-unknown Marilyn vos Savant claimed an IQ of 228, almost 1 SD above Unz if so.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Marilyn_vos_Savant#Rise_to_fame_and_IQ_score

    Apparently not Jewish, how is that possible.

    She seems like a smart cookie, but, like others here, I'm somewhat leery of such extremely high IQ scores.
  4. Anonymous[337] • Disclaimer says:

    I love asian fusion.

    • Replies: @Reg Cæsar

    I love asian fusion.
     
    But do you love it cold?


    https://www.veteranstoday.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/05/cold-fussion.jpg
  5. @DB Cooper
    I know Ron is smart but didn't know his IQ is 214.

    That’s all?

    What a piker.

    • Replies: @Buck Ransom
    I read an article maybe five years back guesstimating that Mozart's IQ was 275.
  6. @DB Cooper
    I know Ron is smart but didn't know his IQ is 214.

    I know Ron is smart but didn’t know his IQ is 214.

    No IQ test ever invented can reliably validate that score. I doubt any IQ test ever invented can give us anything of value above 175. At that level of brain power, it’s probably more useful to tell everyone who presumes to have that kind of mind to go invent a new branch of mathematics in the next six months – and then rank the presumptive nominees by their output in performing that task.

    I have to laugh, though, at the idea of Ron putting his IQ score on his resume. And so precise, too. Not 213. Not 215. But 214. Lol!

    • LOL: utu
    • Replies: @Kibernetika
    I have to laugh, though, at the idea of Ron putting his IQ score on his resume. And so precise, too. Not 213. Not 215. But 214. Lol!

    This reminds me of Bobby Fischer, the chess great. His mind didn't grok quantities and numbers as we mere normals do (obviously!). Once, in one of his later public rants, he said something about childhood and household junk that he had in storage. He said that he was missing an "approximately"/~ primorial prime number of boxes. The number was stated. Everyone knew the number, so why would he say that it was approximate?
    , @Anon

    No IQ test ever invented can reliably validate that score. I doubt any IQ test ever invented can give us anything of value above 175.
     
    That's true. There are so few people that there is not a large enough sample test the test against.

    And it's not really clear what an IQ of that level would even mean.

    We know that the correlations between the different cognitive skills starts to break down at higher IQs anyway (math vs. language, for instance), and IQ is defined as the thing, g, that represents this lock-step correlation.

    Also, Hsu has spoken about the two theories of IQ, one that smart people are less broken than dumb people, and one that smart people have more of some sort of good stuff. Kevin Mitchell's book makes me think that the former is true more than the latter. Yes, you can have a phsycially bigger brain, but the main factor in high IQ is few brain and neurological mutations and fewer fetal development glitches, i.e., fewer defects in your brain. This theory of IQ implicitly puts a sort of practical cap on intelligence, maybe the John Von Neumann level.
    , @danand
    Pincher Martin,

    I would guess that Ron’s 214 number was relayed to him by his parents. Up until 1979, when a lawsuit ended the practice, in California parents of both the gifted and “learning disabled” were informed by their primary school of their child’s IQ based off WISC-R testing administered in the, if I remember correctly, 3rd or 4th grade. All California school children were evaluated: the testing setup/arranged for as part of a longterm Stanford University “educational system evaluation”.
  7. Ron Keeva Unz = Our Zen knave.

  8. Oh, to have plenty of raw g horsepower, an open mind, true peer cred; fearlessness, and a healthful dollop of humility. And tenure 🙂 Damned rare combination in academia. Dr. Hsu is really something (as is Dr. Washington).

  9. @Reg Cæsar

    I know Ron is smart but didn’t know his IQ is 214.
     
    I didn't know anybody's is.

    Is that on one of the tests with a higher SD?

    No, what it is, is that Mr. Unz has got a whole hell of a lot of adversity points that boost up his “corrected IQ”. Between his having to live among a swarm of Mexicans in Silicon Valley, and the rough treatment he’s been getting from, cough, cough, some, cough, of his commenters here, he gets adversity points that bring up his IQ from the high 80’s to a corrected low 2 hundred and teens.

    [MORE]

    I’m just kidding, Ron! You have the best political site for both content (disregarding the Commies), and usability that I’ve ever seen. With the amount of reading and writing you do, if it’s not IQ, it’s gotta be lots of work. Thank you, but I still hope you can take a joke!

    • Replies: @(((Owen)))
    You get 100 bonus (((adversity))) points for certain ethnic challenges, 100 more points for being stuck in California with all the immigrants, 100 more for all that Silicon Valley sunshine that saps your wok ethic and makes you want to go play outside, and 100 more for hanging out with the Unz.com commentariat. That would raise anyone's score a few sigmas.
  10. @Anonymous
    I love asian fusion.

    I love asian fusion.

    But do you love it cold?

  11. @Pincher Martin

    I know Ron is smart but didn’t know his IQ is 214.
     
    No IQ test ever invented can reliably validate that score. I doubt any IQ test ever invented can give us anything of value above 175. At that level of brain power, it's probably more useful to tell everyone who presumes to have that kind of mind to go invent a new branch of mathematics in the next six months - and then rank the presumptive nominees by their output in performing that task.

    I have to laugh, though, at the idea of Ron putting his IQ score on his resume. And so precise, too. Not 213. Not 215. But 214. Lol!

    I have to laugh, though, at the idea of Ron putting his IQ score on his resume. And so precise, too. Not 213. Not 215. But 214. Lol!

    This reminds me of Bobby Fischer, the chess great. His mind didn’t grok quantities and numbers as we mere normals do (obviously!). Once, in one of his later public rants, he said something about childhood and household junk that he had in storage. He said that he was missing an “approximately”/~ primorial prime number of boxes. The number was stated. Everyone knew the number, so why would he say that it was approximate?

  12. Sunday Sunday Sunday at Island raceway !!!

    • Replies: @MBlanc46
    Looked liked beautiful US 30 dragstrip, drag racing capital of Chicagoland, to me. Used to listen to those adverts on WLS and WCFL in the 1960s.
  13. @DB Cooper
    I know Ron is smart but didn't know his IQ is 214.

    Are these scores directly correlated with (amount squirreled away in USD^3 in various inviolable accounts, or more), and therefore of some real-world weighting?
    Or are they basically meaningless? Like being in MENSA, and claiming not to be scarily autistic and fundamentally disabled (not just physically)?
    I mean, have these soi-disant braniacs ever made a feckin thing in their lives, apart from noise? What do they leave behind? C’mon, tell me now. Rip me a new one.
    Reminds me of Howard Hughes, but without the engineering talent.

  14. Ron Unz, if you are reading this, as I suspect, I have a serious question after getting to a certain point in this podcast interview*. How much real higher math did you all use in making those securities forecasting programs? Calculus, diff-eqs, matrix math, real analysis**, what? I’m wondering why they needed guys with the super-high IQ or, even if that makes sense, why physicists/math guys over some mech/electrical engineers who had a knack of programming on the side.

    Secondly, did you feel at all that you were wasting your physics skills doing that stuff (I understand your goal was to make a tidy sum to help you do what you wanted later)?

    .

    * got through 11 1/2 min listening, and nothing wrong with that, but now I’m reading and it’s > 5 times faster, as Mr. Sailer and I mentioned in some other thread.

    ** I really neither know what that is, nor care at this point, but I know it’s somewhat “higher” math than what I’ve taken, back in the day.

    • Replies: @Mark Spahn (West Seneca, NY)
    Achmed E. Newman mentions that reading the transcript of Ron Unz's interview takes only 1/5 the time to listen to it (65 minutes). I was surprised to find that there even was a transcript (thank you!). It took me an hour to read it (I'm a slow reader). I noticed that Ron has a verbal tic of inserting into his speech the phrase "you know" (and, to a much lesser extent, "like"). The last topic was especially interesting, about Harvard being a hedge fund with a school attached.
    , @Endgame Napoleon
    Did Ron Unz program the cone-headed Equities Bots—as shown on Z-Hedge—that displaced the legendary stock traders from their jobs?

    If he put his 214 IQ on his resume, why was Moonbeam elected? What is Moonbeam’s IQ?
    , @nebulafox
    As far as an undergraduate course goes, in real analysis, you prove how and why calculus works. You start with the basic properties of real numbers and functions, and work your way up from there. I'm sure on a graduate level, it's a lot more advanced, but still: you are essentially studying real valued functions.

    It turns out that it is far, far nastier than the complex world, ironically enough. Complex analysis is elegant and smooth and nice. Not so with real analysis!

    , @Hibernian
    "How much real higher math did you all use in making those securities forecasting programs? Calculus, diff-eqs, matrix math, real analysis**, what? I’m wondering why they needed guys with the super-high IQ or, even if that makes sense, why physicists/math guys over some mech/electrical engineers who had a knack of programming on the side."

    I only got as far as the Laplace transform, but it seems to me that having elegant mathematical models would reduce the amount of brute force computer work needed.

    There's plenty of engineering software on the market designed by engineers for engineers. As for hiring physics or math types to write financial/economic forecasting software, if that's where some of the talent is, the employers go for it.
  15. From the transcript:

    So you know, I would say well, you run this scenario, that security’s worth a great deal of money, while if you run this other scenario it’s totally worthless, and it just isn’t clear to me how you can really predict what would happen. And they would always then respond oh no, we have a research department, we pay them millions of dollars a year and they predict what will happen to default rates and interest rates and prepayment rates. So you know, you don’t worry about that…

    Haha, that reminds me of a personal story about people who get into lots of details but with some really vague-ass assumptions going in. I was at a seminar about exercising company-type stock options one time, and about how keep the taxes lowest, etc… The thing is, this internet company during the dot-com 1.0 era had stock that could have gone all over the place, up by 200% or down by 75%, in a couple year period, the time-line for which these “smart investment advisors” were teaching about.

    After about an hour and a half of this investment/tax advise, I raised my hand “What stock-price increase are you basing this tax advise on, I mean, do you have different scenarios depending on what the stock might do?” “Nope, we base it on an increase of 10% yearly.” I hope I didn’t say “oh, shit” out loud, but that was my thought, and I spent the rest of the time daydreaming. I was getting paid a salary anyhow …

  16. I am very surprised about Mr. Unz’s generosity in his words about the media. This is regarding the last 1/3 or so of the transcript. He uses phrases like “no confidence in the media” and “not reliable”. I guess because this this podcast may have more listens and reads, but this isn’t the Ron Unz I read here and in the comments. Maybe those words could be accurate for the media of a century ago, and maybe not still, but I know about them today.

    The modern legacy media are liars and propagandists! It’s not that they are not “reliable” enough and just make too many mistakes, and it’s not that I don’t have confidence in them. I see through their lies, and I don’t like lies, so I opt out.

    How come you were so nice on there, Ron?

    • Replies: @MBlanc46
    Absolutely bang on, Achmed. They’re enemies of the people. Full stop.
  17. With regards to Harvard admissions Ron Unz ignores the thrust of his own article (as does Hsu). Of course, discrimination against Asians is just PC enough to rail against. To discuss other, more pervasive, forms of positive and negative discrimination is in bad form.

    • Replies: @J.Ross
    That's true, but discrimination against Asians is still a relevant topic, and I don't suppose Unz can be called a censor regarding education admissions.
  18. Anon[345] • Disclaimer says:
    @Pincher Martin

    I know Ron is smart but didn’t know his IQ is 214.
     
    No IQ test ever invented can reliably validate that score. I doubt any IQ test ever invented can give us anything of value above 175. At that level of brain power, it's probably more useful to tell everyone who presumes to have that kind of mind to go invent a new branch of mathematics in the next six months - and then rank the presumptive nominees by their output in performing that task.

    I have to laugh, though, at the idea of Ron putting his IQ score on his resume. And so precise, too. Not 213. Not 215. But 214. Lol!

    No IQ test ever invented can reliably validate that score. I doubt any IQ test ever invented can give us anything of value above 175.

    That’s true. There are so few people that there is not a large enough sample test the test against.

    And it’s not really clear what an IQ of that level would even mean.

    We know that the correlations between the different cognitive skills starts to break down at higher IQs anyway (math vs. language, for instance), and IQ is defined as the thing, g, that represents this lock-step correlation.

    Also, Hsu has spoken about the two theories of IQ, one that smart people are less broken than dumb people, and one that smart people have more of some sort of good stuff. Kevin Mitchell’s book makes me think that the former is true more than the latter. Yes, you can have a phsycially bigger brain, but the main factor in high IQ is few brain and neurological mutations and fewer fetal development glitches, i.e., fewer defects in your brain. This theory of IQ implicitly puts a sort of practical cap on intelligence, maybe the John Von Neumann level.

    • Replies: @Pincher Martin
    Your entire post seems reasonable to me.
  19. @donut
    Sunday Sunday Sunday at Island raceway !!!

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2_YmA0cd3kg

    Looked liked beautiful US 30 dragstrip, drag racing capital of Chicagoland, to me. Used to listen to those adverts on WLS and WCFL in the 1960s.

  20. @Achmed E. Newman
    I am very surprised about Mr. Unz's generosity in his words about the media. This is regarding the last 1/3 or so of the transcript. He uses phrases like "no confidence in the media" and "not reliable". I guess because this this podcast may have more listens and reads, but this isn't the Ron Unz I read here and in the comments. Maybe those words could be accurate for the media of a century ago, and maybe not still, but I know about them today.

    The modern legacy media are liars and propagandists! It's not that they are not "reliable" enough and just make too many mistakes, and it's not that I don't have confidence in them. I see through their lies, and I don't like lies, so I opt out.

    How come you were so nice on there, Ron?

    Absolutely bang on, Achmed. They’re enemies of the people. Full stop.

  21. “I know Ron is smart but didn’t know his IQ is 214.”

    Should have gone with 211. That’s a prime number. Nerds would be impressed.

  22. Mr. Unz Please find other terms for agreement other than “exactly”.

    • Replies: @MEH 0910
    If it was good enough for the Iron Sheik...

    Best Promos - Iron Sheik - Exactly!
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0ZISjOn2Qgo
  23. @DB Cooper
    I know Ron is smart but didn't know his IQ is 214.

    According to a scientific calculator, given a population having an average IQ of 100 with a standard deviation of 15, the proportion of people with an IQ of 214 or more is normalcdf(214,9.99E99,100,15) = 14.9346772E-15. The reciprocal of this number is 66.95826021E12 = 67 trillion. So only one person is 67 trillion is as smart as Ron Unz. He is not only the smartest person in the world; he is the smartest person in the galaxy!

  24. @Curtis Dunkel
    With regards to Harvard admissions Ron Unz ignores the thrust of his own article (as does Hsu). Of course, discrimination against Asians is just PC enough to rail against. To discuss other, more pervasive, forms of positive and negative discrimination is in bad form.

    That’s true, but discrimination against Asians is still a relevant topic, and I don’t suppose Unz can be called a censor regarding education admissions.

  25. Lot says:
    @Reg Cæsar

    I know Ron is smart but didn’t know his IQ is 214.
     
    I didn't know anybody's is.

    Is that on one of the tests with a higher SD?

    “I didn’t know anybody’s is.”

    You are correct. Ron Unz’s claimed IQ is more than 7 standard deviations above the mean, and would be about 1 in 6 quadrillion. I don’t doubt he really thinks he is smarter than every human being who has ever lived, and is likely to live between the dawn of time and 30,000,000AD, assuming population stabilizes at the predicted 2070 level and average world IQ of 100.

    • Replies: @Desiderius
    Only 30 million years? And only on this one measly planet? Aren’t you selling Ron a little short here?
    , @Eddie Collins

    Ron Unz’s claimed IQ is more than 7 standard deviations above the mean, and would be about 1 in 6 quadrillion. I don’t doubt he really thinks he is smarter than every human being who has ever lived
     
    I think Unz thinks Richard Feynman was the smartest guy of the 20th century.

    Ron Unz says:
    March 21, 2015 at 12:50 pm GMT • 100 Words

    “...In my considered opinion, there’s no one in the second half of the twentieth century who had a stronger claim to being the smartest human being in the world than Richard Feynman...

    ...But my main point is there’s simply *no* possibility Feynman had an honest-to-goodness true IQ of 125. 251 or maybe even 512 would be likelier. Back in JHS or HS he developed a new type of generalized Calculus after someone gave him a book. In college, he won the Putnam as a last-minute substitute entrant...”

    http://www.unz.com/isteve/jeffrey-goldberg-is-it-time-for-the-jews-to-leave-europe/#comment-902604
     

    , @Unladen Swallow
    I swear I read years ago that Unz admitted to just making that score up, but people believed it and repeated it. I don't think it's true.
  26. @Lot
    “I didn’t know anybody’s is.”

    You are correct. Ron Unz’s claimed IQ is more than 7 standard deviations above the mean, and would be about 1 in 6 quadrillion. I don’t doubt he really thinks he is smarter than every human being who has ever lived, and is likely to live between the dawn of time and 30,000,000AD, assuming population stabilizes at the predicted 2070 level and average world IQ of 100.

    Only 30 million years? And only on this one measly planet? Aren’t you selling Ron a little short here?

    • LOL: Achmed E. Newman
  27. I had always estimated Ron’s IQ to be between 8 and 9 standard deviations above the mean, mode and median (symmetrical as additive variance is). I thought, at some length, as to whether Ron’s IQ was +10 sigma and decided that without proof, I could not accept such a proposition.

    But I have always accepted that Ron’s IQ is at least +8 sigma and I have found nothing to alter that conception. And I still live by its injunction.

    • Replies: @Anon

    I had always estimated Ron’s IQ
     
    Lets just say that Ron is an eccentric switched on guy. This IQ fixation is weird.
  28. OTOH, Trump going to order 25K illegal gatecrashers to Palm Beach County? Why not Marin County?

  29. @Lot
    “I didn’t know anybody’s is.”

    You are correct. Ron Unz’s claimed IQ is more than 7 standard deviations above the mean, and would be about 1 in 6 quadrillion. I don’t doubt he really thinks he is smarter than every human being who has ever lived, and is likely to live between the dawn of time and 30,000,000AD, assuming population stabilizes at the predicted 2070 level and average world IQ of 100.

    Ron Unz’s claimed IQ is more than 7 standard deviations above the mean, and would be about 1 in 6 quadrillion. I don’t doubt he really thinks he is smarter than every human being who has ever lived

    I think Unz thinks Richard Feynman was the smartest guy of the 20th century.

    Ron Unz says:
    March 21, 2015 at 12:50 pm GMT • 100 Words

    “…In my considered opinion, there’s no one in the second half of the twentieth century who had a stronger claim to being the smartest human being in the world than Richard Feynman…

    …But my main point is there’s simply *no* possibility Feynman had an honest-to-goodness true IQ of 125. 251 or maybe even 512 would be likelier. Back in JHS or HS he developed a new type of generalized Calculus after someone gave him a book. In college, he won the Putnam as a last-minute substitute entrant…”

    http://www.unz.com/isteve/jeffrey-goldberg-is-it-time-for-the-jews-to-leave-europe/#comment-902604

    • Replies: @Desiderius
    Does Ron think IQ uses an antilog scale?
  30. @Achmed E. Newman
    Ron Unz, if you are reading this, as I suspect, I have a serious question after getting to a certain point in this podcast interview*. How much real higher math did you all use in making those securities forecasting programs? Calculus, diff-eqs, matrix math, real analysis**, what? I'm wondering why they needed guys with the super-high IQ or, even if that makes sense, why physicists/math guys over some mech/electrical engineers who had a knack of programming on the side.

    Secondly, did you feel at all that you were wasting your physics skills doing that stuff (I understand your goal was to make a tidy sum to help you do what you wanted later)?

    .


    * got through 11 1/2 min listening, and nothing wrong with that, but now I'm reading and it's > 5 times faster, as Mr. Sailer and I mentioned in some other thread.

    ** I really neither know what that is, nor care at this point, but I know it's somewhat "higher" math than what I've taken, back in the day.

    Achmed E. Newman mentions that reading the transcript of Ron Unz’s interview takes only 1/5 the time to listen to it (65 minutes). I was surprised to find that there even was a transcript (thank you!). It took me an hour to read it (I’m a slow reader). I noticed that Ron has a verbal tic of inserting into his speech the phrase “you know” (and, to a much lesser extent, “like”). The last topic was especially interesting, about Harvard being a hedge fund with a school attached.

    • Replies: @Achmed E. Newman
    Yeah, there were a WHOLE LOT of "you know"s. It's easier to catch that in the transcript, and I'm sure I have similar things I need to cut out.

    BTW, I meant 1/5 of the time (if even that) for any kind of transcript, unless you were dealing with some really fast talkers. With John Derbyshire's podcasts, it's very easy to compare, as he's got the segment times written in, yet I know I read the whole thing in well under 10 minutes.

    It must be that Ron Unz is a hell of a fast reader, as he mentions so many books that he's read just based on a reference here, or wanting to support or look into this or that idea. It's too much for me.
  31. OT, perfect job for Steve Sailer (or his loyal readers)

    Fact Checker
    Southern Poverty Law Center

    The fact checker will be tasked with reviewing articles focusing on extremism and hate groups for the Hatewatch Blog, Intelligence Report magazine as well as other short- and long-form content for print and the web.

    Be able to quickly analyze content for factual errors, logical flaws, and significant omissions;
    Full Job Description

    ——–

    Make sure they pay you by the error rather than by the hour and you’ll be a rich man.

  32. @Lot
    “I didn’t know anybody’s is.”

    You are correct. Ron Unz’s claimed IQ is more than 7 standard deviations above the mean, and would be about 1 in 6 quadrillion. I don’t doubt he really thinks he is smarter than every human being who has ever lived, and is likely to live between the dawn of time and 30,000,000AD, assuming population stabilizes at the predicted 2070 level and average world IQ of 100.

    I swear I read years ago that Unz admitted to just making that score up, but people believed it and repeated it. I don’t think it’s true.

    • Replies: @Achmed E. Newman
    He did not say that in the interview.
  33. @bomag
    That's all?

    What a piker.

    I read an article maybe five years back guesstimating that Mozart’s IQ was 275.

    • Replies: @Realist

    I read an article maybe five years back guesstimating that Mozart’s IQ was 275.
     
    Estimating an IQ is a useless endeavor.
  34. @Unladen Swallow
    I swear I read years ago that Unz admitted to just making that score up, but people believed it and repeated it. I don't think it's true.

    He did not say that in the interview.

    • Replies: @Unladen Swallow
    I didn't finish the interview, but he certainly implied near the beginning of that interview it was true. I think it was an article during one of ballot initiatives Ron supported where he said he made up the figure. I haven't been able to track down the article for a while.
  35. @Mark Spahn (West Seneca, NY)
    Achmed E. Newman mentions that reading the transcript of Ron Unz's interview takes only 1/5 the time to listen to it (65 minutes). I was surprised to find that there even was a transcript (thank you!). It took me an hour to read it (I'm a slow reader). I noticed that Ron has a verbal tic of inserting into his speech the phrase "you know" (and, to a much lesser extent, "like"). The last topic was especially interesting, about Harvard being a hedge fund with a school attached.

    Yeah, there were a WHOLE LOT of “you know”s. It’s easier to catch that in the transcript, and I’m sure I have similar things I need to cut out.

    BTW, I meant 1/5 of the time (if even that) for any kind of transcript, unless you were dealing with some really fast talkers. With John Derbyshire’s podcasts, it’s very easy to compare, as he’s got the segment times written in, yet I know I read the whole thing in well under 10 minutes.

    It must be that Ron Unz is a hell of a fast reader, as he mentions so many books that he’s read just based on a reference here, or wanting to support or look into this or that idea. It’s too much for me.

  36. @Achmed E. Newman
    Ron Unz, if you are reading this, as I suspect, I have a serious question after getting to a certain point in this podcast interview*. How much real higher math did you all use in making those securities forecasting programs? Calculus, diff-eqs, matrix math, real analysis**, what? I'm wondering why they needed guys with the super-high IQ or, even if that makes sense, why physicists/math guys over some mech/electrical engineers who had a knack of programming on the side.

    Secondly, did you feel at all that you were wasting your physics skills doing that stuff (I understand your goal was to make a tidy sum to help you do what you wanted later)?

    .


    * got through 11 1/2 min listening, and nothing wrong with that, but now I'm reading and it's > 5 times faster, as Mr. Sailer and I mentioned in some other thread.

    ** I really neither know what that is, nor care at this point, but I know it's somewhat "higher" math than what I've taken, back in the day.

    Did Ron Unz program the cone-headed Equities Bots—as shown on Z-Hedge—that displaced the legendary stock traders from their jobs?

    If he put his 214 IQ on his resume, why was Moonbeam elected? What is Moonbeam’s IQ?

  37. Someone who runs for Governor of California as a Republican (even back then), despite being in favor of a high minimum wage and a defender of illegal immigrant Hispanics, may have a high IQ, but is not very smart politically.

  38. @newrouter
    Mr. Unz Please find other terms for agreement other than "exactly".

    If it was good enough for the Iron Sheik…

    Best Promos – Iron Sheik – Exactly!

  39. I’m glad Ron Unz is preserving all those old documents and making them accessible. I remember reading Financial Times articles from the late 1930s and seeing the fury and alarm over Hitler nationalizing the banks in Vienna, and starting to wonder whether the question of who was the aggressor in WWII might have been a little more complicated than I was led to believe.

    I’m no fan of Hitler and his imperialism, but our own elites’ motives were far from pure.

    Actually, there’s a lot of stuff from the 80s and 90s that’s being memory-holed, like the BCCI liquidation that pretty directly led to Al Qaeda and the WTC attacks.

    • Replies: @nebulafox
    The thing that always strikes me about Hitler is how he would have never come to power but for affluent American progressives, who genuinely believed we were fighting a moral crusade, insisting that Germany could and should transform overnight into a Jeffersonian democracy. Because freedom and values and utopian new world order and stuff.

    Sound familiar to another group of intellectuals a little under a century later who decided on ignoring the prudent wisdom of the men of the founding generations in favor of dreams of moral crusades, and ultimately, empire? I am increasingly convinced that if America is to survive, and revive the republic that our oligarchs want to strangle once and for all, the first step is to ditch the empire.

    It is worth noting that the UK and France were a lot more realistic and less eager to just ditch traditional institutions in Mitteleuropa. But without the US intervening, they'd be forced to accept negotiating with Germany (everybody was bled white by that point in the war), and they knew it. Psychologically, they probably couldn't bring themselves to accept that, as seen by their rejection of the idea of anything less than decisive victory earlier when Berlin signaled it's willingness to talk. And while it's certainly true that Berlin brought a lot of its misery on itself-from the Zimmermann fiasco to ignoring Hoffmann and insisting on a Carthaginian peace with the helpless Russians, which not only tied down a lot of soldiers to occupy the new lands but provided propaganda fodder for those who insisted the Hun was beyond reasoning with-it is equally fair to say that there were those who fanned the pseudo-religious Protestant pro-British fervor in the US for less than idealistic reasons. For example, there were certain bankers on Wall Street who rashly loaned a lot of money to London earlier and who'd be massively out of pocket if the US didn't intervene...

  40. @Eddie Collins

    Ron Unz’s claimed IQ is more than 7 standard deviations above the mean, and would be about 1 in 6 quadrillion. I don’t doubt he really thinks he is smarter than every human being who has ever lived
     
    I think Unz thinks Richard Feynman was the smartest guy of the 20th century.

    Ron Unz says:
    March 21, 2015 at 12:50 pm GMT • 100 Words

    “...In my considered opinion, there’s no one in the second half of the twentieth century who had a stronger claim to being the smartest human being in the world than Richard Feynman...

    ...But my main point is there’s simply *no* possibility Feynman had an honest-to-goodness true IQ of 125. 251 or maybe even 512 would be likelier. Back in JHS or HS he developed a new type of generalized Calculus after someone gave him a book. In college, he won the Putnam as a last-minute substitute entrant...”

    http://www.unz.com/isteve/jeffrey-goldberg-is-it-time-for-the-jews-to-leave-europe/#comment-902604
     

    Does Ron think IQ uses an antilog scale?

    • Replies: @Lot
    He has repeatedly shown a pretty basic ignorance of statistics in his writing on IQ and crime rates.

    His latest antisemitic/Hitlerfan article says this:

    ““Today it is estimated by Jacob’s grandson, John Schiff, that the old man sank about 20,000,000 dollars for the final triumph of Bolshevism in Russia.” The present-day value of the figure quoted is probably some $2 billion, a very substantial sum.”

    $20 million circa 1917 is actually about $380 million today. He’s off by by more than 500%.

    He claims to spend a lot of time reading history books and old 20th century original sources, but it appears that every single time he saw a dollar figure quoted he multiplied it by 100. When he read about Henry Ford’s $5 a day wage (from 1914), he thought it was an inflation-adjusted $500 a day!

    I don’t expect even the smartest man who has ever lived, with an interest in 20th century history, to have the exact adjustment factor for every year memorized. But even a second class mind would pick up on the fact that a dollar 100 years ago isn’t worth one cent today. Or maybe check out one of many online inflation calculators, which takes about 10 seconds.

    The funniest part was Unz’s defense of Hitler’s occupation of Czechoslovakia. He was freeing the Germans and Slovaks from the cruel oppression of the Czechs!

    “But reading Irving’s history a few years ago gave me a very different perspective. The key factor was that Czechs were a minority, controlling Czechoslovakia by improper means and therefore their rule was widely disliked by the majority of the population. After Hitler freed the Sudeten Germans, the Slovaks and the other groups split off as well, and the state basically fell about. That’s exactly what happened to Czechoslovakia once again in 1993”
  41. @Achmed E. Newman
    Ron Unz, if you are reading this, as I suspect, I have a serious question after getting to a certain point in this podcast interview*. How much real higher math did you all use in making those securities forecasting programs? Calculus, diff-eqs, matrix math, real analysis**, what? I'm wondering why they needed guys with the super-high IQ or, even if that makes sense, why physicists/math guys over some mech/electrical engineers who had a knack of programming on the side.

    Secondly, did you feel at all that you were wasting your physics skills doing that stuff (I understand your goal was to make a tidy sum to help you do what you wanted later)?

    .


    * got through 11 1/2 min listening, and nothing wrong with that, but now I'm reading and it's > 5 times faster, as Mr. Sailer and I mentioned in some other thread.

    ** I really neither know what that is, nor care at this point, but I know it's somewhat "higher" math than what I've taken, back in the day.

    As far as an undergraduate course goes, in real analysis, you prove how and why calculus works. You start with the basic properties of real numbers and functions, and work your way up from there. I’m sure on a graduate level, it’s a lot more advanced, but still: you are essentially studying real valued functions.

    It turns out that it is far, far nastier than the complex world, ironically enough. Complex analysis is elegant and smooth and nice. Not so with real analysis!

  42. I was not aware that unz.com has such an intelligent management running it.

    I cannot claim to have the intellectual power that the management here exhibits. My graduate work was in experimental nuclear physics and therefore my ratiocination processes are much more mundane.

  43. @Bill P
    I'm glad Ron Unz is preserving all those old documents and making them accessible. I remember reading Financial Times articles from the late 1930s and seeing the fury and alarm over Hitler nationalizing the banks in Vienna, and starting to wonder whether the question of who was the aggressor in WWII might have been a little more complicated than I was led to believe.

    I'm no fan of Hitler and his imperialism, but our own elites' motives were far from pure.

    Actually, there's a lot of stuff from the 80s and 90s that's being memory-holed, like the BCCI liquidation that pretty directly led to Al Qaeda and the WTC attacks.

    The thing that always strikes me about Hitler is how he would have never come to power but for affluent American progressives, who genuinely believed we were fighting a moral crusade, insisting that Germany could and should transform overnight into a Jeffersonian democracy. Because freedom and values and utopian new world order and stuff.

    Sound familiar to another group of intellectuals a little under a century later who decided on ignoring the prudent wisdom of the men of the founding generations in favor of dreams of moral crusades, and ultimately, empire? I am increasingly convinced that if America is to survive, and revive the republic that our oligarchs want to strangle once and for all, the first step is to ditch the empire.

    It is worth noting that the UK and France were a lot more realistic and less eager to just ditch traditional institutions in Mitteleuropa. But without the US intervening, they’d be forced to accept negotiating with Germany (everybody was bled white by that point in the war), and they knew it. Psychologically, they probably couldn’t bring themselves to accept that, as seen by their rejection of the idea of anything less than decisive victory earlier when Berlin signaled it’s willingness to talk. And while it’s certainly true that Berlin brought a lot of its misery on itself-from the Zimmermann fiasco to ignoring Hoffmann and insisting on a Carthaginian peace with the helpless Russians, which not only tied down a lot of soldiers to occupy the new lands but provided propaganda fodder for those who insisted the Hun was beyond reasoning with-it is equally fair to say that there were those who fanned the pseudo-religious Protestant pro-British fervor in the US for less than idealistic reasons. For example, there were certain bankers on Wall Street who rashly loaned a lot of money to London earlier and who’d be massively out of pocket if the US didn’t intervene…

  44. @Achmed E. Newman
    He did not say that in the interview.

    I didn’t finish the interview, but he certainly implied near the beginning of that interview it was true. I think it was an article during one of ballot initiatives Ron supported where he said he made up the figure. I haven’t been able to track down the article for a while.

    • Replies: @Achmed E. Newman
    Yeah, sorry, that's what I meant. He certainly imlpied that it's true.
  45. @Achmed E. Newman
    No, what it is, is that Mr. Unz has got a whole hell of a lot of adversity points that boost up his "corrected IQ". Between his having to live among a swarm of Mexicans in Silicon Valley, and the rough treatment he's been getting from, cough, cough, some, cough, of his commenters here, he gets adversity points that bring up his IQ from the high 80's to a corrected low 2 hundred and teens.

    I'm just kidding, Ron! You have the best political site for both content (disregarding the Commies), and usability that I've ever seen. With the amount of reading and writing you do, if it's not IQ, it's gotta be lots of work. Thank you, but I still hope you can take a joke!

    You get 100 bonus (((adversity))) points for certain ethnic challenges, 100 more points for being stuck in California with all the immigrants, 100 more for all that Silicon Valley sunshine that saps your wok ethic and makes you want to go play outside, and 100 more for hanging out with the Unz.com commentariat. That would raise anyone’s score a few sigmas.

  46. @Reg Cæsar

    I know Ron is smart but didn’t know his IQ is 214.
     
    I didn't know anybody's is.

    Is that on one of the tests with a higher SD?

    The not-unknown Marilyn vos Savant claimed an IQ of 228, almost 1 SD above Unz if so.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Marilyn_vos_Savant#Rise_to_fame_and_IQ_score

    Apparently not Jewish, how is that possible.

    She seems like a smart cookie, but, like others here, I’m somewhat leery of such extremely high IQ scores.

  47. @DB Cooper
    I know Ron is smart but didn't know his IQ is 214.

    From HAL 9000 to UNZ 9000?

    • LOL: jim jones
  48. Lot says:
    @Desiderius
    Does Ron think IQ uses an antilog scale?

    He has repeatedly shown a pretty basic ignorance of statistics in his writing on IQ and crime rates.

    His latest antisemitic/Hitlerfan article says this:

    ““Today it is estimated by Jacob’s grandson, John Schiff, that the old man sank about 20,000,000 dollars for the final triumph of Bolshevism in Russia.” The present-day value of the figure quoted is probably some $2 billion, a very substantial sum.”

    $20 million circa 1917 is actually about $380 million today. He’s off by by more than 500%.

    He claims to spend a lot of time reading history books and old 20th century original sources, but it appears that every single time he saw a dollar figure quoted he multiplied it by 100. When he read about Henry Ford’s $5 a day wage (from 1914), he thought it was an inflation-adjusted $500 a day!

    I don’t expect even the smartest man who has ever lived, with an interest in 20th century history, to have the exact adjustment factor for every year memorized. But even a second class mind would pick up on the fact that a dollar 100 years ago isn’t worth one cent today. Or maybe check out one of many online inflation calculators, which takes about 10 seconds.

    The funniest part was Unz’s defense of Hitler’s occupation of Czechoslovakia. He was freeing the Germans and Slovaks from the cruel oppression of the Czechs!

    “But reading Irving’s history a few years ago gave me a very different perspective. The key factor was that Czechs were a minority, controlling Czechoslovakia by improper means and therefore their rule was widely disliked by the majority of the population. After Hitler freed the Sudeten Germans, the Slovaks and the other groups split off as well, and the state basically fell about. That’s exactly what happened to Czechoslovakia once again in 1993”

    • Replies: @Dieter Kief

    He has repeatedly shown a pretty basic ignorance of statistics in his writing on IQ and crime rates.
     
    Now I think of the rude way, in which Ron Unz attacked Jordan B. Peterson as numerically illiterate and I know where I am, actually: In the realms of Dr. Freud's defense mechanisms, if not in Alfred Adler's territory of compensative mechanisms. Either way: Sigh - it obviously ain't easy to be (a very long) way above average***.

    ***
    And I think it is true. (Now I think of Walther Röhrl, who has shown, by driving various automobiles, that he has "a very agile mind" (Bod Dylan about the young (!) Bob Dylan) ahh, and Röhrl - at many an occasion (this was a trademark of sorts for him, even) stated, that he'd be just a regular Bavarian guy.

    For anybody interested in seeing really, just how much above average Walter Röhrl is (he is still alive), have a look at this (trigger-warning: This is no footage for snowflakes).


    He has repeatedly shown a pretty basic ignorance of statistics in his writing on IQ and crime rates.
     
    Now I think of the rude way, in which Ron Unz attacked Jordan B. Peterson as numerically illiterate and I know where I am, actually: In the realms of Dr. Freud's defense mechanisms, if not in Alfred Adler's territory of compensative mechanisms. Either way: Sigh - it obviously ain't easy to be (a very long) way above average***.

    ***
    And I think it is true. (Now I think of Walther Röhrl, who has shown, by driving various automobiles, that he has "a very agile mind" (Bod Dylan about the young (!) Bob Dylan) ahh, and Röhrl - at many an occasion (this was a trademark of sorts for him, even) stated, that he'd be just a regular Bavarian guy.

    For anybody interested in seeing, just how much above average Walter Röhrl is (he is still alive), have a look at this (trigger-warning: This is no footage for snowflakes).

    Watch from 2 min 43 sec. on
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ghUldLcBCYw

    , @Ron Unz

    He has repeatedly shown a pretty basic ignorance of statistics in his writing on IQ and crime rates...

    ““Today it is estimated by Jacob’s grandson, John Schiff, that the old man sank about 20,000,000 dollars for the final triumph of Bolshevism in Russia.” The present-day value of the figure quoted is probably some $2 billion, a very substantial sum.”

    $20 million circa 1917 is actually about $380 million today. He’s off by by more than 500%.

    He claims to spend a lot of time reading history books and old 20th century original sources, but it appears that every single time he saw a dollar figure quoted he multiplied it by 100. When he read about Henry Ford’s $5 a day wage (from 1914), he thought it was an inflation-adjusted $500 a day!

    I don’t expect even the smartest man who has ever lived, with an interest in 20th century history, to have the exact adjustment factor for every year memorized. But even a second class mind would pick up on the fact that a dollar 100 years ago isn’t worth one cent today. Or maybe check out one of many online inflation calculators, which takes about 10 seconds.
     
    Well, as is quite often the case, I think our good friend "Lot" is entirely mistaken...

    Currency conversions over very long periods of time are obviously extremely "fuzzy" and imprecise, and also greatly depend upon the purposes to which the funds are being spent.

    As an extremely trivial example, if you're purchasing real estate in 1970 you'd need to use one dollar-converter, while if you're purchasing computer equipment that same year, you'd need to use an entirely different one.

    With regard to worker salaries, here are some figures from 1910:

    The average US wage in 1910 was 22 cents per hour.
    The average US worker made between $200 and $400 per year.
     
    http://www.orangepower.com/threads/life-in-1910-100-years-ago.96681/

    So American workers today are paid (very roughly) 100x more than they were 100 years ago.

    Schiff's $20 million was presumably mostly used to pay stipends to Russian revolutionaries or perhaps bribes to officials. Therefore, I'd think the wages-conversion-factor would be the most appropriate one to use.

    Sean McMeekin is an excellent Russian historian, and his outstanding book The Russian Revolution focuses heavily on the circumstances surrounding that important event, including the heavy outside funds that the Bolsheviks used to promote their revolutionary activities. When I read it a few months ago, I noticed he had independently decided to use the same 100-to-1 dollar conversation ratio, so I don't think my figure was so totally ridiculous.
  49. @Pincher Martin

    I know Ron is smart but didn’t know his IQ is 214.
     
    No IQ test ever invented can reliably validate that score. I doubt any IQ test ever invented can give us anything of value above 175. At that level of brain power, it's probably more useful to tell everyone who presumes to have that kind of mind to go invent a new branch of mathematics in the next six months - and then rank the presumptive nominees by their output in performing that task.

    I have to laugh, though, at the idea of Ron putting his IQ score on his resume. And so precise, too. Not 213. Not 215. But 214. Lol!

    Pincher Martin,

    I would guess that Ron’s 214 number was relayed to him by his parents. Up until 1979, when a lawsuit ended the practice, in California parents of both the gifted and “learning disabled” were informed by their primary school of their child’s IQ based off WISC-R testing administered in the, if I remember correctly, 3rd or 4th grade. All California school children were evaluated: the testing setup/arranged for as part of a longterm Stanford University “educational system evaluation”.

    • Replies: @Pincher Martin
    It's possible. But if they relayed that information to the young Mister Unz, they were almost certainly passing on bad info.

    When Marilyn vos Savant was a child, she was told she had an IQ of 228. But some psychometricians, who later researched Savant's claim after she built a minor public reputation on it, criticized that stratospheric number as being wrongly assigned for various reasons.

  50. @Buck Ransom
    I read an article maybe five years back guesstimating that Mozart's IQ was 275.

    I read an article maybe five years back guesstimating that Mozart’s IQ was 275.

    Estimating an IQ is a useless endeavor.

  51. @DB Cooper
    I know Ron is smart but didn't know his IQ is 214.

    I know Ron is smart but didn’t know his IQ is 214.

    Putting your IQ on a resume is presumptuous. Interviewing employers should have ask him to prove it.

    • Replies: @Achmed E. Newman
    It'd probably been illegal already by that time, ~ a decade after Griggs vs. Duke Power, but I'm no lawyer.
  52. @trelane
    I had always estimated Ron's IQ to be between 8 and 9 standard deviations above the mean, mode and median (symmetrical as additive variance is). I thought, at some length, as to whether Ron's IQ was +10 sigma and decided that without proof, I could not accept such a proposition.

    But I have always accepted that Ron's IQ is at least +8 sigma and I have found nothing to alter that conception. And I still live by its injunction.

    I had always estimated Ron’s IQ

    Lets just say that Ron is an eccentric switched on guy. This IQ fixation is weird.

    • LOL: trelane
  53. @Unladen Swallow
    I didn't finish the interview, but he certainly implied near the beginning of that interview it was true. I think it was an article during one of ballot initiatives Ron supported where he said he made up the figure. I haven't been able to track down the article for a while.

    Yeah, sorry, that’s what I meant. He certainly imlpied that it’s true.

  54. @Realist

    I know Ron is smart but didn’t know his IQ is 214.
     
    Putting your IQ on a resume is presumptuous. Interviewing employers should have ask him to prove it.

    It’d probably been illegal already by that time, ~ a decade after Griggs vs. Duke Power, but I’m no lawyer.

    • Replies: @Realist

    It’d probably been illegal already by that time, ~ a decade after Griggs vs. Duke Power, but I’m no lawyer.
     
    And I'm no lawyer, but the ruling appears to apply to work requirements. Since Unz stated his IQ on his resume the interviewing employer was probably in his right to ask him to prove his claim.
  55. @Lot
    He has repeatedly shown a pretty basic ignorance of statistics in his writing on IQ and crime rates.

    His latest antisemitic/Hitlerfan article says this:

    ““Today it is estimated by Jacob’s grandson, John Schiff, that the old man sank about 20,000,000 dollars for the final triumph of Bolshevism in Russia.” The present-day value of the figure quoted is probably some $2 billion, a very substantial sum.”

    $20 million circa 1917 is actually about $380 million today. He’s off by by more than 500%.

    He claims to spend a lot of time reading history books and old 20th century original sources, but it appears that every single time he saw a dollar figure quoted he multiplied it by 100. When he read about Henry Ford’s $5 a day wage (from 1914), he thought it was an inflation-adjusted $500 a day!

    I don’t expect even the smartest man who has ever lived, with an interest in 20th century history, to have the exact adjustment factor for every year memorized. But even a second class mind would pick up on the fact that a dollar 100 years ago isn’t worth one cent today. Or maybe check out one of many online inflation calculators, which takes about 10 seconds.

    The funniest part was Unz’s defense of Hitler’s occupation of Czechoslovakia. He was freeing the Germans and Slovaks from the cruel oppression of the Czechs!

    “But reading Irving’s history a few years ago gave me a very different perspective. The key factor was that Czechs were a minority, controlling Czechoslovakia by improper means and therefore their rule was widely disliked by the majority of the population. After Hitler freed the Sudeten Germans, the Slovaks and the other groups split off as well, and the state basically fell about. That’s exactly what happened to Czechoslovakia once again in 1993”

    He has repeatedly shown a pretty basic ignorance of statistics in his writing on IQ and crime rates.

    Now I think of the rude way, in which Ron Unz attacked Jordan B. Peterson as numerically illiterate and I know where I am, actually: In the realms of Dr. Freud’s defense mechanisms, if not in Alfred Adler’s territory of compensative mechanisms. Either way: Sigh – it obviously ain’t easy to be (a very long) way above average***.

    ***
    And I think it is true. (Now I think of Walther Röhrl, who has shown, by driving various automobiles, that he has “a very agile mind” (Bod Dylan about the young (!) Bob Dylan) ahh, and Röhrl – at many an occasion (this was a trademark of sorts for him, even) stated, that he’d be just a regular Bavarian guy.

    For anybody interested in seeing really, just how much above average Walter Röhrl is (he is still alive), have a look at this (trigger-warning: This is no footage for snowflakes).

    He has repeatedly shown a pretty basic ignorance of statistics in his writing on IQ and crime rates.

    Now I think of the rude way, in which Ron Unz attacked Jordan B. Peterson as numerically illiterate and I know where I am, actually: In the realms of Dr. Freud’s defense mechanisms, if not in Alfred Adler’s territory of compensative mechanisms. Either way: Sigh – it obviously ain’t easy to be (a very long) way above average***.

    ***
    And I think it is true. (Now I think of Walther Röhrl, who has shown, by driving various automobiles, that he has “a very agile mind” (Bod Dylan about the young (!) Bob Dylan) ahh, and Röhrl – at many an occasion (this was a trademark of sorts for him, even) stated, that he’d be just a regular Bavarian guy.

    For anybody interested in seeing, just how much above average Walter Röhrl is (he is still alive), have a look at this (trigger-warning: This is no footage for snowflakes).

    Watch from 2 min 43 sec. on

  56. It’s curious that Unz can remember Glazer’s age (95) but can’t remember that he died in January, not “a few years ago.”

  57. @Achmed E. Newman
    Ron Unz, if you are reading this, as I suspect, I have a serious question after getting to a certain point in this podcast interview*. How much real higher math did you all use in making those securities forecasting programs? Calculus, diff-eqs, matrix math, real analysis**, what? I'm wondering why they needed guys with the super-high IQ or, even if that makes sense, why physicists/math guys over some mech/electrical engineers who had a knack of programming on the side.

    Secondly, did you feel at all that you were wasting your physics skills doing that stuff (I understand your goal was to make a tidy sum to help you do what you wanted later)?

    .


    * got through 11 1/2 min listening, and nothing wrong with that, but now I'm reading and it's > 5 times faster, as Mr. Sailer and I mentioned in some other thread.

    ** I really neither know what that is, nor care at this point, but I know it's somewhat "higher" math than what I've taken, back in the day.

    “How much real higher math did you all use in making those securities forecasting programs? Calculus, diff-eqs, matrix math, real analysis**, what? I’m wondering why they needed guys with the super-high IQ or, even if that makes sense, why physicists/math guys over some mech/electrical engineers who had a knack of programming on the side.”

    I only got as far as the Laplace transform, but it seems to me that having elegant mathematical models would reduce the amount of brute force computer work needed.

    There’s plenty of engineering software on the market designed by engineers for engineers. As for hiring physics or math types to write financial/economic forecasting software, if that’s where some of the talent is, the employers go for it.

    • Replies: @Lot
    Mortgage securities are priced with pretty basic math, second year level calc, microeconomics, and stats would be sufficient at a good school.

    You can try to refine the math on a price model more and more but it wouldn’t improve it much because the big questions are the direction of the economy, interest rates, and real estate prices. And if you have those figured out, you should be working at a hedge fund that trades them, not dealing with the details of mortgage securities themselves.

    , @Coemgen
    A more interesting question regarding mortgage-backed securities is: why would a lender lend to someone who is likely to default?

    These lenders were hiring the smartest people on the planet to try to hide the results of bad loans. Did they also fire their actuaries?

    What does Occam's Razor say?
  58. Lot says:
    @Hibernian
    "How much real higher math did you all use in making those securities forecasting programs? Calculus, diff-eqs, matrix math, real analysis**, what? I’m wondering why they needed guys with the super-high IQ or, even if that makes sense, why physicists/math guys over some mech/electrical engineers who had a knack of programming on the side."

    I only got as far as the Laplace transform, but it seems to me that having elegant mathematical models would reduce the amount of brute force computer work needed.

    There's plenty of engineering software on the market designed by engineers for engineers. As for hiring physics or math types to write financial/economic forecasting software, if that's where some of the talent is, the employers go for it.

    Mortgage securities are priced with pretty basic math, second year level calc, microeconomics, and stats would be sufficient at a good school.

    You can try to refine the math on a price model more and more but it wouldn’t improve it much because the big questions are the direction of the economy, interest rates, and real estate prices. And if you have those figured out, you should be working at a hedge fund that trades them, not dealing with the details of mortgage securities themselves.

  59. @danand
    Pincher Martin,

    I would guess that Ron’s 214 number was relayed to him by his parents. Up until 1979, when a lawsuit ended the practice, in California parents of both the gifted and “learning disabled” were informed by their primary school of their child’s IQ based off WISC-R testing administered in the, if I remember correctly, 3rd or 4th grade. All California school children were evaluated: the testing setup/arranged for as part of a longterm Stanford University “educational system evaluation”.

    It’s possible. But if they relayed that information to the young Mister Unz, they were almost certainly passing on bad info.

    When Marilyn vos Savant was a child, she was told she had an IQ of 228. But some psychometricians, who later researched Savant’s claim after she built a minor public reputation on it, criticized that stratospheric number as being wrongly assigned for various reasons.

  60. @Anon

    No IQ test ever invented can reliably validate that score. I doubt any IQ test ever invented can give us anything of value above 175.
     
    That's true. There are so few people that there is not a large enough sample test the test against.

    And it's not really clear what an IQ of that level would even mean.

    We know that the correlations between the different cognitive skills starts to break down at higher IQs anyway (math vs. language, for instance), and IQ is defined as the thing, g, that represents this lock-step correlation.

    Also, Hsu has spoken about the two theories of IQ, one that smart people are less broken than dumb people, and one that smart people have more of some sort of good stuff. Kevin Mitchell's book makes me think that the former is true more than the latter. Yes, you can have a phsycially bigger brain, but the main factor in high IQ is few brain and neurological mutations and fewer fetal development glitches, i.e., fewer defects in your brain. This theory of IQ implicitly puts a sort of practical cap on intelligence, maybe the John Von Neumann level.

    Your entire post seems reasonable to me.

    • Agree: bomag
  61. @Achmed E. Newman
    It'd probably been illegal already by that time, ~ a decade after Griggs vs. Duke Power, but I'm no lawyer.

    It’d probably been illegal already by that time, ~ a decade after Griggs vs. Duke Power, but I’m no lawyer.

    And I’m no lawyer, but the ruling appears to apply to work requirements. Since Unz stated his IQ on his resume the interviewing employer was probably in his right to ask him to prove his claim.

    • Replies: @Achmed E. Newman
    Yeah, OK. It'd have been fun to see. "OK, ask me anything." "uhhhh..."
  62. @Realist

    It’d probably been illegal already by that time, ~ a decade after Griggs vs. Duke Power, but I’m no lawyer.
     
    And I'm no lawyer, but the ruling appears to apply to work requirements. Since Unz stated his IQ on his resume the interviewing employer was probably in his right to ask him to prove his claim.

    Yeah, OK. It’d have been fun to see. “OK, ask me anything.” “uhhhh…”

  63. Well, someone pointed me to this thread, and since so much of the discussion seems to revolve around the silly question of a certain “214” number, I suppose I should clarify matters…

    (1) It was obviously many decades ago, but as I vaguely recall, California back then used the (extended) Stanford-Binet. Particularly high results on the regular pencil-and-paper test were then supplemented by a one-on-one session with a trained psychologist, which allowed much higher scores to be rendered. Were those scores accurate? Who knows!

    (2) Based on this system, the 214 score was the one I received, and since I’m an honest person, I’ve certainly never denied it to anyone. The figure was generally known at the special schools I attended, and I once even saw it on some official document. As you probably realize, the Internet is filled with lots of agitated individuals who are very angry at me for my opinions on various things, and consequently spread all sorts of ridiculous falsehoods.

    (3) Obviously, tests administered to seven- or eight-year-olds probably have sizeable error-bars, and the special LA program I attended had lots of other students who’d also scored quite high, with the minimum enrollment score being 150 (though sometimes pushy parents could override that). For example, another student a couple of years younger than me had scored 205, and there were quite a few students in the 180s and 190s. Here’s a short piece I published a few years ago about that program:

    http://www.unz.com/runz/no-quotas-no-elite-public-high-school/

    (4) For these reason, it was widely accepted at the time that IQ scores ceased to be Gaussian at the high end. Again, whether or not this is or should be correct, I certainly can’t say, and the question should be put to experts in psychometrics.

    (5) The first and only time I ever mentioned the score to anyone was in 1987 when I was applying for an Associate position to the First Boston Corporation, a leading Wall Street investment bank. I was one of the very, very first individuals from an purely academic scientific background to ever do so, and I felt I needed the “hook.”

    (6) The only reason it subsequently got into circulation was that a few years later, I challenged incumbent California Gov. Pete Wilson for renomination in his own Republican primary, and his op-research team did a very extensive investigation of my personal background, discovered the story, and leaked it to the media in hopes of discrediting me among the voters.

    (7) Anyway, I’d hope that this sufficiently clarifies the issue that it doesn’t much recur.

    Incidentally, I’ve already addressed another comment on a related thread:

    http://www.unz.com/forum/ron-unz-on-the-subprime-mortgage-crisis-the-unz-review-and-the-harvard-admissions-scandal/#comment-3223767

  64. @Lot
    He has repeatedly shown a pretty basic ignorance of statistics in his writing on IQ and crime rates.

    His latest antisemitic/Hitlerfan article says this:

    ““Today it is estimated by Jacob’s grandson, John Schiff, that the old man sank about 20,000,000 dollars for the final triumph of Bolshevism in Russia.” The present-day value of the figure quoted is probably some $2 billion, a very substantial sum.”

    $20 million circa 1917 is actually about $380 million today. He’s off by by more than 500%.

    He claims to spend a lot of time reading history books and old 20th century original sources, but it appears that every single time he saw a dollar figure quoted he multiplied it by 100. When he read about Henry Ford’s $5 a day wage (from 1914), he thought it was an inflation-adjusted $500 a day!

    I don’t expect even the smartest man who has ever lived, with an interest in 20th century history, to have the exact adjustment factor for every year memorized. But even a second class mind would pick up on the fact that a dollar 100 years ago isn’t worth one cent today. Or maybe check out one of many online inflation calculators, which takes about 10 seconds.

    The funniest part was Unz’s defense of Hitler’s occupation of Czechoslovakia. He was freeing the Germans and Slovaks from the cruel oppression of the Czechs!

    “But reading Irving’s history a few years ago gave me a very different perspective. The key factor was that Czechs were a minority, controlling Czechoslovakia by improper means and therefore their rule was widely disliked by the majority of the population. After Hitler freed the Sudeten Germans, the Slovaks and the other groups split off as well, and the state basically fell about. That’s exactly what happened to Czechoslovakia once again in 1993”

    He has repeatedly shown a pretty basic ignorance of statistics in his writing on IQ and crime rates…

    ““Today it is estimated by Jacob’s grandson, John Schiff, that the old man sank about 20,000,000 dollars for the final triumph of Bolshevism in Russia.” The present-day value of the figure quoted is probably some $2 billion, a very substantial sum.”

    $20 million circa 1917 is actually about $380 million today. He’s off by by more than 500%.

    He claims to spend a lot of time reading history books and old 20th century original sources, but it appears that every single time he saw a dollar figure quoted he multiplied it by 100. When he read about Henry Ford’s $5 a day wage (from 1914), he thought it was an inflation-adjusted $500 a day!

    I don’t expect even the smartest man who has ever lived, with an interest in 20th century history, to have the exact adjustment factor for every year memorized. But even a second class mind would pick up on the fact that a dollar 100 years ago isn’t worth one cent today. Or maybe check out one of many online inflation calculators, which takes about 10 seconds.

    Well, as is quite often the case, I think our good friend “Lot” is entirely mistaken…

    Currency conversions over very long periods of time are obviously extremely “fuzzy” and imprecise, and also greatly depend upon the purposes to which the funds are being spent.

    As an extremely trivial example, if you’re purchasing real estate in 1970 you’d need to use one dollar-converter, while if you’re purchasing computer equipment that same year, you’d need to use an entirely different one.

    With regard to worker salaries, here are some figures from 1910:

    The average US wage in 1910 was 22 cents per hour.
    The average US worker made between $200 and $400 per year.

    http://www.orangepower.com/threads/life-in-1910-100-years-ago.96681/

    So American workers today are paid (very roughly) 100x more than they were 100 years ago.

    Schiff’s $20 million was presumably mostly used to pay stipends to Russian revolutionaries or perhaps bribes to officials. Therefore, I’d think the wages-conversion-factor would be the most appropriate one to use.

    Sean McMeekin is an excellent Russian historian, and his outstanding book The Russian Revolution focuses heavily on the circumstances surrounding that important event, including the heavy outside funds that the Bolsheviks used to promote their revolutionary activities. When I read it a few months ago, I noticed he had independently decided to use the same 100-to-1 dollar conversation ratio, so I don’t think my figure was so totally ridiculous.

    • Replies: @Lot
    “With regard to worker salaries”

    Change in average wages is not what “inflation” means. As a proxy of inflation, it also doesn’t work because you have to assume there was 0.0% increase, over 100 years, in real wages.

    Is that actually the case?

    Using your method, any arbitrary inflation rate can be defended by simply finding one thing whose price changed that amount.
    , @Lot
    One of the many absurd consequences of your unique and really dumb inflation measure is that it would be impossible for real wages to ever change, even over 1000 years.

    Nor could per capita real GDP ever increase by even 0.5% a a year for very long, as the only way that could happen is changes in the labor force participation rate and share of GDP, which change slowly and could not possibly even double, even over 1000 years, as both are already well above 50%.

    Being called a troll by a Holocaust denier/9-11 Truther I take as a badge of honor!
  65. Lot says:
    @Ron Unz

    He has repeatedly shown a pretty basic ignorance of statistics in his writing on IQ and crime rates...

    ““Today it is estimated by Jacob’s grandson, John Schiff, that the old man sank about 20,000,000 dollars for the final triumph of Bolshevism in Russia.” The present-day value of the figure quoted is probably some $2 billion, a very substantial sum.”

    $20 million circa 1917 is actually about $380 million today. He’s off by by more than 500%.

    He claims to spend a lot of time reading history books and old 20th century original sources, but it appears that every single time he saw a dollar figure quoted he multiplied it by 100. When he read about Henry Ford’s $5 a day wage (from 1914), he thought it was an inflation-adjusted $500 a day!

    I don’t expect even the smartest man who has ever lived, with an interest in 20th century history, to have the exact adjustment factor for every year memorized. But even a second class mind would pick up on the fact that a dollar 100 years ago isn’t worth one cent today. Or maybe check out one of many online inflation calculators, which takes about 10 seconds.
     
    Well, as is quite often the case, I think our good friend "Lot" is entirely mistaken...

    Currency conversions over very long periods of time are obviously extremely "fuzzy" and imprecise, and also greatly depend upon the purposes to which the funds are being spent.

    As an extremely trivial example, if you're purchasing real estate in 1970 you'd need to use one dollar-converter, while if you're purchasing computer equipment that same year, you'd need to use an entirely different one.

    With regard to worker salaries, here are some figures from 1910:

    The average US wage in 1910 was 22 cents per hour.
    The average US worker made between $200 and $400 per year.
     
    http://www.orangepower.com/threads/life-in-1910-100-years-ago.96681/

    So American workers today are paid (very roughly) 100x more than they were 100 years ago.

    Schiff's $20 million was presumably mostly used to pay stipends to Russian revolutionaries or perhaps bribes to officials. Therefore, I'd think the wages-conversion-factor would be the most appropriate one to use.

    Sean McMeekin is an excellent Russian historian, and his outstanding book The Russian Revolution focuses heavily on the circumstances surrounding that important event, including the heavy outside funds that the Bolsheviks used to promote their revolutionary activities. When I read it a few months ago, I noticed he had independently decided to use the same 100-to-1 dollar conversation ratio, so I don't think my figure was so totally ridiculous.

    “With regard to worker salaries”

    Change in average wages is not what “inflation” means. As a proxy of inflation, it also doesn’t work because you have to assume there was 0.0% increase, over 100 years, in real wages.

    Is that actually the case?

    Using your method, any arbitrary inflation rate can be defended by simply finding one thing whose price changed that amount.

    • Troll: Ron Unz
  66. Lot says:
    @Ron Unz

    He has repeatedly shown a pretty basic ignorance of statistics in his writing on IQ and crime rates...

    ““Today it is estimated by Jacob’s grandson, John Schiff, that the old man sank about 20,000,000 dollars for the final triumph of Bolshevism in Russia.” The present-day value of the figure quoted is probably some $2 billion, a very substantial sum.”

    $20 million circa 1917 is actually about $380 million today. He’s off by by more than 500%.

    He claims to spend a lot of time reading history books and old 20th century original sources, but it appears that every single time he saw a dollar figure quoted he multiplied it by 100. When he read about Henry Ford’s $5 a day wage (from 1914), he thought it was an inflation-adjusted $500 a day!

    I don’t expect even the smartest man who has ever lived, with an interest in 20th century history, to have the exact adjustment factor for every year memorized. But even a second class mind would pick up on the fact that a dollar 100 years ago isn’t worth one cent today. Or maybe check out one of many online inflation calculators, which takes about 10 seconds.
     
    Well, as is quite often the case, I think our good friend "Lot" is entirely mistaken...

    Currency conversions over very long periods of time are obviously extremely "fuzzy" and imprecise, and also greatly depend upon the purposes to which the funds are being spent.

    As an extremely trivial example, if you're purchasing real estate in 1970 you'd need to use one dollar-converter, while if you're purchasing computer equipment that same year, you'd need to use an entirely different one.

    With regard to worker salaries, here are some figures from 1910:

    The average US wage in 1910 was 22 cents per hour.
    The average US worker made between $200 and $400 per year.
     
    http://www.orangepower.com/threads/life-in-1910-100-years-ago.96681/

    So American workers today are paid (very roughly) 100x more than they were 100 years ago.

    Schiff's $20 million was presumably mostly used to pay stipends to Russian revolutionaries or perhaps bribes to officials. Therefore, I'd think the wages-conversion-factor would be the most appropriate one to use.

    Sean McMeekin is an excellent Russian historian, and his outstanding book The Russian Revolution focuses heavily on the circumstances surrounding that important event, including the heavy outside funds that the Bolsheviks used to promote their revolutionary activities. When I read it a few months ago, I noticed he had independently decided to use the same 100-to-1 dollar conversation ratio, so I don't think my figure was so totally ridiculous.

    One of the many absurd consequences of your unique and really dumb inflation measure is that it would be impossible for real wages to ever change, even over 1000 years.

    Nor could per capita real GDP ever increase by even 0.5% a a year for very long, as the only way that could happen is changes in the labor force participation rate and share of GDP, which change slowly and could not possibly even double, even over 1000 years, as both are already well above 50%.

    Being called a troll by a Holocaust denier/9-11 Truther I take as a badge of honor!

    • Agree: Desiderius
    • Replies: @Desiderius
    214 IQers don't get much practice being wrong, so you should probably cut him some slack.
  67. @Lot
    One of the many absurd consequences of your unique and really dumb inflation measure is that it would be impossible for real wages to ever change, even over 1000 years.

    Nor could per capita real GDP ever increase by even 0.5% a a year for very long, as the only way that could happen is changes in the labor force participation rate and share of GDP, which change slowly and could not possibly even double, even over 1000 years, as both are already well above 50%.

    Being called a troll by a Holocaust denier/9-11 Truther I take as a badge of honor!

    214 IQers don’t get much practice being wrong, so you should probably cut him some slack.

  68. @Hibernian
    "How much real higher math did you all use in making those securities forecasting programs? Calculus, diff-eqs, matrix math, real analysis**, what? I’m wondering why they needed guys with the super-high IQ or, even if that makes sense, why physicists/math guys over some mech/electrical engineers who had a knack of programming on the side."

    I only got as far as the Laplace transform, but it seems to me that having elegant mathematical models would reduce the amount of brute force computer work needed.

    There's plenty of engineering software on the market designed by engineers for engineers. As for hiring physics or math types to write financial/economic forecasting software, if that's where some of the talent is, the employers go for it.

    A more interesting question regarding mortgage-backed securities is: why would a lender lend to someone who is likely to default?

    These lenders were hiring the smartest people on the planet to try to hide the results of bad loans. Did they also fire their actuaries?

    What does Occam’s Razor say?

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