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Vox: "Charles Murray Is Once Again Peddling Junk Science About Race and IQ"

From Vox:

Charles Murray is once again peddling junk science about race and IQ

Podcaster and author Sam Harris is the latest to fall for it.

Updated by Eric Turkheimer, Kathryn Paige Harden, and Richard E. Nisbett May 18, 2017, 9:50am EDT

Eric Turkheimer is the Hugh Scott Hamilton Professor of Psychology at the University of Virginia. Twitter: @ent3c. Kathryn Paige Harden (@kph3k) is associate professor in the department of psychology at the University of Texas at Austin. Richard E. Nisbett is the Theodore M. Newcomb Distinguished University Professor at the University of Michigan.

Charles Murray, the conservative scholar who co-authored The Bell Curve with the late Richard Herrnstein, was recently denied a platform at Middlebury College. Students shouted him down, and one of his hosts was hurt in a scuffle. But Murray recently gained a much larger audience: an extensive interview with best-selling author Sam Harris on his popular Waking Up podcast. That is hardly a niche forum: Waking Up is the fifth-most-downloaded podcast in iTunes’s Science and Medicine category.

Getting worked up over Charles Murray being allowed on a podcast seems a little bizarre. (Here’s the podcast.)

Under the faux indignation and clickbait headline, however, this is about as good an attempt as any to shore up the Conventional Wisdom that the racial differences in average intelligence can’t be influenced by genetics at all. So I’ll go through a chunk of it, adding comments.

Interestingly, the article, when read carefully, is also about how Charles Murray is mostly so much more right than the Conventional Wisdom about IQ. But he’s still a Witch! The article is another one of these attempts to fight back against today’s rampant Science Denialism while not being accused of witchcraft yourself.

Here’s an important question: Do these triple bankshot approaches ever work?

They’re kind of like some prisoner of war being put on TV to denounce the Great Satan while blinking T-O-R-T-U-R-E in Morse Code? But what if nobody back home knows Morse Code anymore?

The basic problem is that the zeitgeist is continually dumbing down. We don’t worry about how to apply objective principles anymore to real world examples of human behavior, we just look for who are the Good Guys and who are the Bad Guys. And how can we tell? Just look at them: the cishet white males are the Bad Guys. What’s so complicated about that?

In this kind of mental atmosphere, will more than three Vox readers come to the end of this carefully coded article and say to themselves: “You know, Charles Murray is still as evil and stupid as I thought, but now I realize that most of what Murray says about IQ is Science and Good!”?

In an episode that runs nearly two and a half hours, Harris, who is best known as the author of The End of Faith, presents Murray as a victim of “a politically correct moral panic” — and goes so far as to say that Murray has no intellectually honest academic critics. Murray’s work on The Bell Curve, Harris insists, merely summarizes the consensus of experts on the subject of intelligence.

The consensus, he says, is that IQ exists; that it is extraordinarily important to life outcomes of all sorts; that it is largely heritable; and that we don’t know of any interventions that can improve the part that is not heritable. The consensus also includes the observation that the IQs of black Americans are lower, on average, than that of whites, and — most contentiously — that this and other differences among racial groups is based at least in part in genetics. …

(In the interview, Murray says he has modified none of his views since the publication of the book, in 1994; if anything, he says, the evidence for his claims has grown stronger. In fact, the field of intelligence has moved far beyond what Murray has been saying for the past 23 years.)

Eh … As I pointed out on the 20th anniversary of The Bell Curve, the world today looks even more like the world Herrnstein and Murray described.

The reality is that there haven’t been all that many revolutionary discoveries since then. The genomic research up through 2016 largely has panned out in the direction Herrnstein and Murray expected, although I’ve been told that a new preprint raises questions about Murray’s guess that the gene variants driving differences between the races are similar to the variants driving differences between individuals. If true, that would suggest that racial differences are in some ways more profound than Murray assumed, which would be ironic.

Turkheimer has gotten a lot of attention for a 2003 paper arguing that in one sample of poor people with lowish IQs, the heritability of IQ was lower than in better off populations, which is interesting but not hugely galvanizing. Emil Kirkegaard in 2016 asked “Did Turkheimer el al (2003) replicate?” I won’t try to adjudicate a question over my head.

But, anyway, the last big scientific finding to raise major questions about the Jensenist view was the Flynn Effect in the 1970s-1980s, which Herrnstein and Murray didn’t exactly ignore: they named it in The Bell Curve.

Murray’s premises, which proceed in declining order of actual broad acceptance by the scientific community, go like this:

1) Intelligence, as measured by IQ tests, is a meaningful construct that describes differences in cognitive ability among humans.

2) Individual differences in intelligence are moderately heritable.

3) Racial groups differ in their mean scores on IQ tests.

4) Discoveries about genetic ancestry have validated commonly used racial groupings.

5) On the basis of points 1 through 4, it is natural to assume that the reasons for racial differences in IQ scores are themselves at least partly genetic.

ORDER IT NOW

Until you get to 5, none of the premises is completely incorrect. However, for each of them Murray’s characterization of the evidence is slanted in a direction that leads first to the social policies he endorses, and ultimately to his conclusions about race and IQ. We, and many other scientific psychologists, believe the evidence supports a different view of intelligence, heritability, and race.

We believe there is a fairly wide consensus among behavioral scientists in favor of our views, but there is undeniably a range of opinions in the scientific community. Some well-informed scientists hold views closer to Murray’s than to ours. …

Let’s take Murray’s principles one at a time.

Intelligence is meaningful. This principle comes closest to being universally accepted by scientific psychologists. …

But observing that some people have greater cognitive ability than others is one thing; assuming that this is because of some biologically based, essential inner quality called g that causes them to be smarter, as Murray claims, is another. There is a vibrant ongoing debate about the biological reality of g, but intelligence tests can be meaningful and useful even if an essential inner g doesn’t exist at all.

Indeed. So what is the relevance of g to this debate?

The question of g is fascinating and also quite difficult. But it’s not absolutely relevant to this debate other than that poor Stephen Jay Gould got all hung up on g, fulminating: “The chimerical nature of g is the rotten core of Jensen’s edifice …”

As I’ve pointed out before, for example, Harvard requires applicants to take the SAT or ACT, both of which correlate considerably with IQ. The goal is to supplement the GPA with a measure that gives additional insight into brainpower. Say the g factor doesn’t exist and that there is zero correlation between an SAT math score and an SAT verbal score. Harvard would still favor students who score well on both measures over those who score well on only math or verbal. In the real world, there is a lot of correlation between SAT Math and SAT Verbal scores, just like the g factor theory implies. But, I suspect, we would still be having this IQ and Race debate if there weren’t.

Intelligence is heritable. To say that intelligence is heritable means that, in general, people who are more similar genetically are also more similar in their IQ. Identical twins, who share all their DNA, have more similar IQs than fraternal twins or siblings, who only share half. Half-siblings’ IQs are even less similar than that; cousins, still less.

Heritability is not unique to IQ; in fact, virtually all differences among individual human beings are somewhat heritable. … Heritability is not a special property of certain traits that have turned out to be genetic; it is a description of the human condition, according to which we are born with certain biological realities that play out in complex ways in concert with environmental factors, and are affected by chance events throughout our lives.

Okay!

This is a pretty funny example of the rhetorical strategy of much of this article. It’s designed to get readers to say to themselves: “That nasty moron Murray thinks the heritability of intelligence is partly genetic, when smart people know it’s really a … description of the human condition!”

An awful lot of this article consists of the three professors agreeing with Murray, but phrasing their endorsement of various Bell Curve assertions in such a way that Vox readers will think it’s actually a crushing takedown of Murray. The whole thing is full of these kind of trick maneuvers.

Do these kind of Secret Decoder Ring articles ever work? Does anybody ever finish the article and say to themselves, “Yes, Charlie Murray is just as evil and stupid as I previously believed, but now I’m aware that 80% of what Murray says about IQ is Science and Good!”

I dunno …

The basic problem is that the zeitgeist is just getting dumber and dumber as the dominant way of thinking gets more childish: Good Guys vs. Bad Guys. (And you determine who are the Good Guys and who are the Bad Guys not by something complicated like what they do, but by something simple: who they are.) So the likelihood of this kind of devious triple bankshot approach actually smartening people up doesn’t seem all that likely. But what do I know?

Today we can also study genes and behavior more directly by analyzing people’s DNA. These methods have given scientists a new way to compute heritability: Studies that measure DNA sequence variation directly have shown that pairs of people who are not relatives, but who are slightly more similar genetically

Such as members of the same race?

Much of the brain fog that besets Vox-level discussions of this question is due to Americans forgetting that race is deeply related to the question of who your relatives are. American intellectuals seldom think in terms of family trees, even though biological genealogy is just about the most absolutely real thing there is in the social realm. The simple reality is that people of one race tend to be more closely related in their family trees to people of the same race than they are to people of other races. But almost nobody notices the relations between race and genealogy in modern American thinking.

, also have more similar IQs than other pairs of people who happen to be more different genetically. These “DNA-based” heritability studies don’t tell you much more than the classical twin studies did, but they put to bed many of the lingering suspicions that twin studies were fundamentally flawed in some way. Like the validity of intelligence testing, the heritability of intelligence is no longer scientifically contentious.

In other words, “the heritability of intelligence is no longer scientifically contentious.” Nor is “the validity of intelligence testing.”

The new DNA-based science has also led to an ironic discovery: Virtually none of the complex human qualities that have been shown to be heritable are associated with a single determinative gene!

It’s almost as if the genetics behind the most complex object in the known universe, the human brain, are also complex.

There are no “genes for” IQ in any but the very weakest sense. Murray’s assertion in the podcast that we are only a few years away from a thorough understanding of IQ at the level of individual genes is scientifically unserious. Modern DNA science has found hundreds of genetic variants that each have a very, very tiny association with intelligence, but even if you add them all together they predict only a small fraction of someone’s IQ score.

And that fraction goes up year by year as larger and larger sample sizes are assembled.

The ability to add together genetic variants to predict an IQ score is a useful tool in the social sciences, but it has not produced a purely biological understanding of why some people have more cognitive ability than others.

Indeed, “it has not produced a purely biological understanding.” But the biological understanding is improving annually.

This is the usual debate over whether a glass is part full or part empty. What we can say is that each year, the glass gets fuller.

Most crucially, heritability, whether low or high, implies nothing about modifiability. The classic example is height, which is strongly heritable (80 to 90 percent), yet the average height of 11-year-old boys in Japan has increased by more than 5 inches in the past 50 years.

True. I write about height a fair amount in part because the effects of nurture on height are so clear. Thus, it’s plausible that the effects of nurture on intelligence probably exist too, even though they are hard to document.

As a non-scientist, I’m more of a nurturist when it comes to IQ than most actual scientists in the field. The scientists emphasize that that the half or so of the influences on IQ that aren’t nature aren’t what we normally think of as nurture, such as having a lot of books in the house growing up. Instead, what gets lumped under nurture appears to be mostly random bad luck that we don’t really understand.

But I’m more cautious on this than most researchers. I’m not convinced that they’ve figured out what drives the Flynn Effect over time, so I’ll hold open the possibility that more traditional nurture may play a considerable role.

But, please note, the Japanese remain one of the shorter nationalities despite a couple of generations of first world living standards. They’ve been surpassed in average height by the South Koreans, for example. The tallest Europeans on average include the wealthy Dutch and the much less wealthy Serbs, Croats, Bosnians, and Albanians. So, height differences among ancestral groups appear to be part nature, part nurture.

A similar historical change is occurring for intelligence: Average IQ scores are increasing across birth cohorts, such that Americans experienced an 18-point gain in average IQ from 1948 to 2002.

Indeed, the Flynn Effect is extremely interesting, as I’ve often pointed out.

And the most decisive and permanent environmental intervention that an individual can experience, adoption from a poor family into a better-off one, is associated with IQ gains of 12 to 18 points. …

There was a small French study of cross-class adoption with a sample size of 38. Despite the tiny sample, I find its finding that nature and nurture are about roughly equally influential (with nature a little stronger) quite plausible. (My general presumption before studying any interesting question is that we’ll end up around fifty-fifty.)

Race differences in average IQ score. People who identify as black or Hispanic in the US and elsewhere on average obtain lower IQ scores than people who identify as white or Asian. That is simply a fact, and stating it plainly offers no support in itself for a biological interpretation of the difference. To what extent is the observed difference in cognitive function a reflection of the myriad ways black people in the US experience historical, social, and economic disadvantage — earning less money, suffering more from chronic disease, dying younger, living in more dangerous and chaotic neighborhoods, attending inferior schools?

Okay, but let’s think about African-American height for a moment, since we were just talking about Japanese height. There’s this guy you may have heard of named LeBron James.

He’s really tall.

In fact, there are a lot of tall, healthy African-Americans currently dominating the NBA playoffs. In terms of height, African-Americans don’t appear to be a malnourished, beaten down population like, say, Guatemalan Indians.

Similarly, the last 72 men to qualify for the finals of the Olympic 100 meter dash, from 1984 through 2016, have been at least half black.

Now you could say, like James Flynn, that contemporary African-American culture is detrimental to the full development of African-American cognitive functioning, that black Americans focus too much on basketball and gangsta rap.

I think that’s highly possible.

But, who exactly is responsible for that? Charles Murray?

This is another triple bankshot approach: if we can just punch Charles Murray enough (metaphorically or literally), then inner city blacks will realize they should stop listening to gangsta rap and instead become patent attorneys. Or something.

… Race and genetic ancestry. First, a too-brief interlude about the biological status of race and genetic ancestry. The topic of whether race is a social or biological construct has been as hotly debated as any topic in the human sciences. The answer, by our lights, isn’t that hard: Human evolutionary history is real; the more recent sorting of people into nations and social groups with some degree of ethnic similarity is real; individual and familial ancestry is real. All of these things are correlated with genetics, but they are also all continuous and dynamic, both geographically and historically.

Our lay concept of race is a social construct that has been laid on top of these vastly more complex biological realities. That is not to say that socially defined race is meaningless or useless. (Modern genomics can do a good job of determining where in Central Europe or Western Africa your ancestors resided.)

And since “modern genomics can do a good job of determining where in Central Europe or Western Africa your ancestors resided,” they can, of course, also do the easier job of determining whether the bulk of your relatives were from Europe or sub-Saharan Africa.

However, a willingness to speak casually about modern racial groupings as simplifications of the ancient and turbulent history of human ancestry should not deceive us into conjuring back into existence 19th-century notions of race — Caucasoid, Negroid, Mongoloid, and all that.

Funny how the Obama Administration spent 8 years heartily enforcing policies based on categories called whites (i.e., Caucasoid), blacks (Negroid), and Asians (Mongoloid) and all that. It’s almost as if the Obama Administration believed that such categories are good enough for government work.

ORDER IT NOW

Murray talks about advances in population genetics as if they have validated modern racial groups. In reality, the racial groups used in the US — white, black, Hispanic, Asian — are such a poor proxy for underlying genetic ancestry that no self-respecting statistical geneticist would undertake a study based only on self-identified racial category as a proxy for genetic ancestry measured from DNA.

Okay, but the implication of that argument is 180 degrees backward from what Turkheimer et al are rhetorically implying. Isn’t it obvious that IQ studies that use self-identified race, as most do, are going to find a slightly lower correlation between race and IQ than ideal studies that use actual genetic ancestry?

For example, both Barack and Michelle Obama self-identified on the 2010 Census solely as black, but Barack clearly has a higher IQ than Michelle. The Vox authors in effect complain that studies based on self-identification would lump both together as purely black, ignoring Barack’s substantial white ancestry. That’s a reasonable methodological complaint, but its implications are the reverse of what they imply.

Similarly, there is an obvious correlation in the U.S. among Hispanics between white ancestry and educational attainment that gets blurred if you rely purely on self-identification.

Black Harvard professors Henry Louis Gates and Lani Guinier complained in 2004 that a very large fraction of Harvard’s affirmative action spots for blacks go to applicants, like Barack, with a white parent and/or foreign elite ancestry instead of toward genuine descendants of American slaves, like Michelle. (They sort of dropped the topic after the rise of Barack later that year).

Finally, the relationship between self-identification and racial ancestry has been investigated via DNA a lot recently, and the results are pretty much that, for whites and blacks, the government’s categories for self-identification are good enough for government work. In 23andMe studies, people who self-identify as non-Hispanic whites are overwhelmingly over 90% white by ancestry. People who identify as non-Hispanic African-Americans are largely at least 50% black.

23andme found among their clients, by my calculations:

If the average self-identified black is 73.2% black and the average self-identified white is 0.19% black, then the average black in America is 385 times blacker than the average white. That doesn’t seem very murky to me.

This was all predictable from the workings of the One Drop System.

Some of this will change in newer generations raised under somewhat different rules, but the basic reality discovered by genome studies is that in America, individuals who self-identify as non-Hispanic whites or as non-Hispanic blacks tend to be quite different by ancestry.

Genetic group differences in IQ. On the basis of the above premises, Murray casually concludes that group differences in IQ are genetically based. But what of the actual evidence on the question? Murray makes a rhetorical move that is commonly deployed by people supporting his point of view: They stake out the claim that at least some of the difference between racial groups is genetic, and challenge us to defend the claim that none, absolutely zero, of it is. They know that science is not designed for proving absolute negatives, but we will go this far: There is currently no reason at all to think that any significant portion of the IQ differences among socially defined racial groups is genetic in origin.

“No reason at all” is pretty silly. A much more reasonable suggestion would be that Occam’s Razor currently favors the hypothesis that some of the IQ gap is genetic in origin, but the subject is extremely complicated and it could turn out to be different.

It’s also possible that there is something we don’t understand at present about this dauntingly complex subject that makes a reasonably final answer not possible, a little bit like how Gödel’s incompleteness theorems came as a big surprise to mathematicians and philosophers such as Bertrand Russell.

In any case, we’ll learn a lot more about this subject over the next couple of decades due to the ongoing advances in genomics.

I had dinner last year with a geneticist who informed me that in his laptop in his backpack under the table was data documenting some gene variants that contribute a part of the racial IQ gap. He asked me if I thought he should publish it.

I asked him how close he was to tenure.

Now, if this scientist chooses to publish, Turkheimer et al could still argue that his results aren’t a “significant portion” of The Gap. This question is very, very complex technically, and giant sample sizes are needed. But those will be eventually forthcoming and we will (probably) eventually see.

But, right now, it sure seems like the wind has mostly been blowing for a long, long time in Murray’s direction and there’s not much reason to expect it to suddenly reverse in the future.

Toward the end of the Vox article:

Liberals need not deny that intelligence is a real thing or that IQ tests measure something real about intelligence, that individuals and groups differ in measured IQ, or that individual differences are heritable in complex ways.

But liberals must deny that racial differences in IQ could possibly be heritable in complex ways.

But isn’t the upshot of this article that Charles Murray is more correct than the Conventional Wisdom about 80% of what’s at issue?

Why isn’t this article entitled, for example: “Charles Murray is mostly right and Stephen Jay Gould was mostly wrong”?

And that leads to a meta-point: Instead of liberals attempting to imply, using all their rhetorical skills, that only horrible people like Charles Murray think there is any evidence at all for a genetic influence on differences in average IQs among races, shouldn’t they be spending more time explaining why, if Murray turns out to be right, that wouldn’t be The End of the World? Right now, we get told over and over about how unthinkable and outrageous this quite plausible scientific finding would be and how only bad people, practically Hitlerites, think there is any evidence for it at all.

This conventional wisdom strikes me as imprudent.

Personally, I think, this seemingly horrifying potential scientific discovery ought to be easily endurable, just as the NBA has survived the rise of the popular suspicion that the reasons LeBron James and other blacks make up most of the best basketball players include genetic differences.

I’ve long argued that The Worst that liberals can imagine about the scientific reality isn’t actually so bad. Murray’s world looks an awful lot like the world we live in, which we manage to live in. But I don’t have the rhetorical chops to reassure liberals that life will go on. I’m an official Horrible Extremist.

But that raises the question: Who does have the rhetorical skills to undermine the increasingly hysterical conventional wisdom and package the mature point of view about genetic diversity in the old soft soap that will go over well with Nice People?

Clearly, even Charles Murray doesn’t have the eloquence to reassure liberals.

Fortunately, there is this guy who is obsessed with genetic diversity in sports, having read David Epstein’s HBD-aware The Sports Gene, And he is really good at public speaking to liberals. And he doesn’t have that much else on his plate at the moment: Barack Obama.

So if Mr. Obama ever reads this, let me ask him to think about taking on the public service of deflating the Science Denialist hysteria over race and genetic diversity.

P.S. This article’s junior co-author, Paige Harden, had some more respectful things to say about Murray back in March.

 
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  1. Yeah, I’m sure Obama has been looking for a way to cut his base off at the knees.

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  2. Anon says:     Show CommentNext New Comment

    Murray peddling Junk Science?

    No way.

    That’s Bill Nye’s specialty.

    Read More
    • Replies: @guest
    The bit might work better if that person were capable of dancing (or merely moving around in a coordinated manner), singing, and cracking jokes at the same time. But they don't train for that stuff anymore, do they?

    Or is part of the joke that she's a bad hip-hopper? More of a joke than the actual jokes, I suppose.

  3. Obama would much rather munch ice cream on Martha’s Vineyard than explain the genetic heritability of racial differences to White upper middle class globalizers.

    The Democrats can’t concede the genetic foundation of the racial test score gap in schools because that might jeopardize the massive loot the education industry gets from the government to close the gap.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Travis
    doubtful this would end it. Even if Liberals began to acknowledge HBD they would use it as an excuse to spend even more money on the disadvantaged. Thus if they agree that 60% of your IQ is due to genes we must spend even more money in an effort to narrow the gap, Although the gap can never be closed, it is more important than ever to leave no child behind. Plus millions of Americans are on the Education gravy train. Impossible to end it. Too many vested interests. Many may embrace it, since teachers and schools will no longer receive so much blame for bad performance..
    , @Damn Crackers
    "Obama would much rather munch ice cream on Martha’s Vineyard..."

    Please refrain from the tasteless gay ex-president jokes.
    , @Abe

    Obama would much rather munch ice cream on Martha’s Vineyard
     
    So let's see- $50 million for dual autobiographies with his wife. $400k for a single 90 minute speech. And room & board on Richard Branson's island and David Geffen's yacht (did Dave entertain the Obamas with early, never-before-heard outtakes of ONE IN A MILLION?) Puppet is getting some nice new golden strings!
    , @EdwardM
    I am waiting for the day when the left acknowledges innate racial differences in ability as a rationale for more redistribution to compensate. That could sort of end a lot of arguments and obviate the need for other flim-flam rationales they adopt -- historical discrimination, benefits of diversity for its own sake, institutional racism, temporary redress, etc.
  4. The black-white IQ gap is decreasing, and is now closer to 10 points than the widely cited one standard deviation (15 points), which is the erroneous value Murray cites in the interview. Academic achievement of blacks has also improved by about one-third standard deviation in recent decades.

    Is this true? Is the fundamental constant of American sociology not fundamentally constant?

    Read More
    • Replies: @gregor
    If you look at the Nisbett article linked at the bottom, on page 146 it notes that The Gap varies considerably with age. It's 17 points at age 24, but it's a more modest 5 points at age 4. Liberals of course view this as proof of racism, but there are a lot of issues there such as rates of maturation, test reliability at young ages, and the fact that a genetic differences don't have to manifest at birth (strength difference in men and women, for example).

    Either the 10 points is at some younger age, or Nisbett is contradicting himself.
  5. So, reading through this, it appears that the authors agree with Murray about most of the substance. Why do they give it such a different spin? Maybe because:

    “No reasonable person would be offended by the observation that African people have curlier hair than the Chinese, notwithstanding the possibility of some future environment in which it is no longer true. But we can recognize a contention that Chinese people are genetically predisposed to be better table tennis players than Africans as silly, and the contention that they are smarter than Africans as ugly, because it is a matter of ethical principle that individual and cultural accomplishment is not tied to the genes in the same way as the appearance of our hair.”

    It is a matter of ethical principle. That’s one of the authors, Turkheimer, ten years ago. Source: https://www.cato-unbound.org/2007/11/21/eric-turkheimer/race-iq

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    • Replies: @Steve Sailer
    "But we can recognize a contention that Chinese people are genetically predisposed to be better table tennis players than Africans as silly"

    Why do people like Turkheimer even raise sports at all?

    , @Vinteuil
    "...it is a matter of ethical principle that individual and cultural accomplishment is not tied to the genes..."

    I.e., OOGA BOOGA.

    And these people presume to call themselves scientists!

    Écrasez l'infâme!
    , @Alec Leamas

    It is a matter of ethical principle. That’s one of the authors, Turkheimer, ten years ago. Source:
     
    That'd be a nice white lie to tell in a political culture that's not race obsessed and where the government didn't consciously parcel out goodies inefficiently and inequitably for the purpose of concealing facts contrary to the lie. "Diversity" as our "greatest strength" is such a universal shibboleth that it requires a bit of empirical testing now and then, don't you think?
    , @Dave Pinsen
    It's not about an "ethical principle", and it's not fear of a 4th Reich. What I wrote on LOTB's blog about this recently:

    I don’t think they care much about the black-white gap. Most probably don’t even acknowledge it exists.

    The real reason why the hereditary component of IQ troubles them is that it challenges the morality of the meritocracy they benefit from and believe in. They assuage their guilt over inequality by donating money to educational institutions and by voting for Dems who promise to “invest more” in education.

    Acknowledging hereditary inequality in aptitude blows that all up.
     
    As someone there wrote in response:

    It’s this. It’s entirely about the technocratic meritocracy. Bringing the grace of God into individual outcomes diminishes the moral weight of “merit.” Well placed leftist technocrats suddenly aren’t better people who worked hard.

    The left doesn’t care about nature/nurture vice black IQ. They’re just annoyed that the visibly obvious persistent black underclass complicates their meritocratic status assignment credential machine.
     
    , @Autochthon
    Didn't it used to be a matter of ethical principle that God created a terracentric world from nothing in six days, that the fossils of dinosaurs were the remnants of dragons, and that diseases were caused by evil spirits?

    I thought science had to do with empiricism, irrespective of principles. Children's deaths from from cancer certainly do not comport with ehtical ideas about fairness and justness, so must we deny that they occur...?
    , @AnotherDad

    It is a matter of ethical principle ....
     
    Exactly. There's not a lick of science or scientific thought here. This is a couple old reds demanding ideological submission. No science, just politics--or religion.

    In the context of actual "science" none of this stuff is even semi-controversial.

    A few points are sufficient:

    1) Any genetically influenced trait which varies between people in a population, must vary between population groups--families, tribes, races. *Must*.
    (I don't know if the evo-bio guys have a named law for this, but if not just call it AnotherDad's law. It's just math.)

    The things "all humans share" are the things which are fixed--brain in skull, two eyes, upright walking, ten fingers, ten toes, etc. The things we vary in are the ones selection is working on and that selection is not identical. between population groups. Ergo those traits vary across population groups. (And it's particularly ludicrous to think selection has been anything close to identical between separated races on the sort of mental traits of increasing use in "civilized life" during these past 10,000 years since the neolithic.)

    2) What the heck has selection been working on but mental traits--smarts, conscientiousness, etc. etc.
    Ok, disease resistance might top that. Potentially genes affecting metabolizing new foods in our diet. But we're the thinking ape. Our big brain is our special survival skill. The idea we haven't had wildly *increased* selection on mental traits these past few thousand years as we settled down and developed trade, metalurgy, social hierarchies, towns, cities, written language, money, industry ... it's ludicrous. And that selection was different everywhere due to different civilizations everywhere.

    3) For American blacks and whites, the data is in--the wave packet has collapsed.
    If a person did not understand the evolutionary stuff--points 1+2--then i'd say maybe as late as 4o or 50 years ago one could posit some sort of semi-credible environment hypothesis. Not so today. If US blacks of a given income\class\educational background raised kids that were within IQ shouting distance of white kids raised with the same background, and the overall black-white gap was simply because proportionally more white kids are in the higher classes, then we could still be having a real argument. But this is not close to being the case.

    Black kids with parents of the same social/educational class, living in the same neighborhoods, going to the same schools, eating food from the same grocery stores and restaurants are considerably behind their white peers. In fact, the most privileged blacks, from the highest US income quintile have mean SAT scores that barely beat whites from the lowest income quintile. All the other blacks are way way behind. Environmental explanations can account for something--perhaps. But they simply can't account for the gap, because even well nurtured blacks, sharing the same environment are woefully behind their white peers.

    Again, if you're talking about actual science, between basic evolutionary theory and the data we have, the big picture is crystal clear. (Debate would be about the size of effects, how they manifest themselves structurally, biochemically, finding particular genes, and perhaps how fast, various eugenic policies could improve things.) Turkheimer and company aren't doing science. They are doing political/religious propaganda.
    , @Peter Johnson
    That is a very revealing quote -- Turkheimer's view essentially is that one should avoid looking at the evidence regarding race and IQ since it is an unshakeable religious principal to believe there is no link! So all this nonsense about "junk science" is just his attempt at propagandizing for his religious principals. Very telling about what really motivates his nonsensical discussion of the scientific evidence.
    , @Jefferson
    "But we can recognize a contention that Chinese people are genetically predisposed to be better table tennis players than Africans as silly, and the contention that they are smarter than Africans as ugly,"

    If the Chinese on average are not smarter than the Blacks why are there like 3 trillion Chinese people in Silicon Valley and only like 3 Blacks there? Lol.

    And Silicon Valley is the ultimate example of an industry that requires having a triple digit IQ. If you have a double digit IQ you can only get a job cleaning toilets in Silicon Valley.

  6. There is currently no reason at all to think that any significant portion of the IQ differences among socially defined racial groups is genetic in origin.

    Aside from being obviously false, staking out a position like this is a big mistake because once there is “some reason” then your whole argument collapses – you have to pray that your current luck holds out and that politics can hold back the progress of science so that no one can ever prove you wrong. This is not a safe bet. Even if you can block this kind of work from being done in the US, you can bet that the Chinese are working on it.

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    • Agree: bomag
    • Replies: @Charles Erwin Wilson
    You are forgetting Liberal Privilege.

    When you are an aristocrat, no one calls you to account for being wrong. Indeed, Marxism proves that with your Liberal Privilege, you are free to be not only wrong, but as wrong as possible, and still be unimpeded by your vile, profane and malicious stupidity.

    If Typhoid Mary were a modern Liberal, she'd be feted as a saintly humanitarian.

    There is no downside for these servants of Sauron being wrong.
  7. You think Vox is bad — this reads like parody, but I don’t think it is:

    From the American Mathematical Society (AMS) ‘inclusion/exclusion’ blog — Get Out The Way

    If you are a white cis man (meaning you identify as male and you were assigned male at birth) you almost certainly should resign from your position of power. That’s right, please quit.

    An excerpt from one of the comments:

    We need to decouple success in mathematics from IQ. IQ is a social construct that cishet white men devised that defines “intelligence” on the basis of culture. Sadly, there is a direct correlation between high IQ and “earning” a PhD in a STEM discipline, which is all too reflective of how white cishet men have designed disciplinary concepts to reinforce their own power structures…It is fundamentally unfair and marginalizing for IQ tests and mathematics curriculum to be designed around the same white supremacist, cisheteronormative standards, thus marginalizing women of color. What we need isn’t just “fair hiring;” we need a radical reconceptualization of mathematics in a decolonizing framework.

    Read the whole thing there.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Dieter Kief

    We need to decouple success in mathematics from IQ. IQ is a social construct that cishet white men devised that defines “intelligence” on the basis of culture.
     
    Small addendum... "that defines intelligence on the basis of culture" - which actually means: Culture of white power, culture of white racism, culture of white sexism & sadism, discipline and punishment (at the very least).
    , @Buffalo Joe
    eah, Oh how they write, but nothing "marginalizes women of color", especially black women, like being a sperm receptacle for multiple men who have no interest in supporting you or nurturing your offspring.
    , @Daniel Chieh
    Okay, we need to have a business plan to integrates wokeness, "mathematics" and witchcraft now.
    , @Seth Largo
    Poe's Law certainly at work here, particularly in the third sentence. That sentence makes me think funny troll.
    , @Paul Yarbles
    The fairly high percentage of supportive comments on this AMS article is very depressing. But perhaps this is because they are discarding a higher percentage of negative comments (my non-supportive, but non-offensive, comment didn't get put through for example). Or maybe it attracts many anti-hetero-white-male lunatics. I hope it's not a representative sample of the mathematical community.
    , @Charles Erwin Wilson
    But the bridge will fall down.

    I'll believe them when they have surgery performed by the affirmative action recipient instead of the white doctor.

    To see this in math demonstrates that cancer in the body politic cannot be ignored. Next up: 2+2 = 5.
    , @Frau Katze
    Crackpot. Ranting about not just race and gender but about "cis". Not even "cishet".

    Meaning, you gays are just part of the patriarchy if you're "cis."
    , @berserker
    Read her CV and dissertation for more amusement:
    https://t.co/zM7iakHtwB
    , @bomag

    From the American Mathematical Society (AMS) ‘inclusion/exclusion’ blog
     
    A strikingly unmathematical piece, from the unlabeled chart to the jargony ramblings about family and politics.

    And some of the lines are just completely self-mocking:


    Stop hiring white cis men... until the problem goes away;... if you think the “great mathematicians” are disproportionately male because of meritocracy, then your sexism is showing
     
  8. It’s almost as if the genetics behind the most complex object in the known universe are also complex.

    This one was good for a good laugh – thanks!

    So if Mr. Obama ever reads this, let me ask him to think about taking on the public service of deflating the Science Denialist hysteria over race and genetic diversity.

    This one sounds good.

    Maybe Mr. Obama could accept the Erich-Fromm-prize, lets say in 2018, since we’re not in a big hurry here. And when giving his acceptence speech in Stuttgart, he could tell what he knows about HBD.
    Fromm always emphasized, that speaking the truth is the most important thing for any reasonable – and really free… – mind.

    And hasn’t Mr. Obama once remarked, that Fromm was his biggest intellectual influence. I mean – I know from the publisher of the last American Fromm-biography, that Barrack Obama withdrew from being mentioned on the cover as an admirer of Fromm, but that was then – when he might have been too hesitant, because he served as President of the USA.

    He is off duty now – and closer to be an intellectual and: A free man, again.

    Or else – Barrack Obama could just do Steve Sailer, his absolutely decent meta-autobiographer, a favour, and speak out about HBD – that ‘d be fine too, wouldn’t it?!

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  9. @LemmusLemmus
    So, reading through this, it appears that the authors agree with Murray about most of the substance. Why do they give it such a different spin? Maybe because:

    "No reasonable person would be offended by the observation that African people have curlier hair than the Chinese, notwithstanding the possibility of some future environment in which it is no longer true. But we can recognize a contention that Chinese people are genetically predisposed to be better table tennis players than Africans as silly, and the contention that they are smarter than Africans as ugly, because it is a matter of ethical principle that individual and cultural accomplishment is not tied to the genes in the same way as the appearance of our hair."

    It is a matter of ethical principle. That's one of the authors, Turkheimer, ten years ago. Source: https://www.cato-unbound.org/2007/11/21/eric-turkheimer/race-iq

    “But we can recognize a contention that Chinese people are genetically predisposed to be better table tennis players than Africans as silly”

    Why do people like Turkheimer even raise sports at all?

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    • Replies: @Vinteuil
    "Why do people like Turkheimer even raise sports at all?"

    Because they know that there's no price to pay for being wrong in the right way.

    There never has been. And the best bet is that there never will be.
    , @SMK
    Biology preceded culture. How long did humans exists before they lived in what could be defined as "cultures." Humans existed for tens of thousands of years before they created societies that could be described as "civilizations." Biology created and informs culture.

    The average low intelligence, higher levels of testosterone, and greater impulsiveness of negro males (and, to a lesser degree, black females) created and sustains the cultures of sub-Saharan Africa, Haiti, inner-city Detroit, Baltimore, St. Louis, etc., the south side of Chicago, the north side of Milwaukee, etc.

    There's no "human nature," essentialyl immutable and rooted in genetics/ biology. Humans are infinitely malleable, and perfectible. Socialization and culture are everything. The races are exactly the same apart from skin color and other superficial, and thus negligible, anatomical differences. Race beneath the skin is an "artifical social construct." The sexes are exactly the same apart from the inescapable differences in anatomy. "Gender" (masculine and feminine identities and behaviors) as opposed to sex (male/female) is an "artificial social construct."

    Thus explains why black males on average are humdreds of times more likely than "Asian" females to commit violent crimes (aggravated assault, robbery, murder, etc.), and thousands of times more likely to commit violent sexual assaults. for obvious anatomical reasons, female can't commit rape in the pure and literal sense of the word.

    If socialization and culture were everything, it would not only be possible to create societies in which "Asian" females were as violent and criminal as black males but also, even more absurdly, societies in which "Asian" females were far more violent and criminal than negro males and the males of all other races!
  10. I was wondering if you have any thoughts on DeBoer’s take on HBD? He seems to be one of the few liberals willing to dive in and address the facts as they are, rather than how he would like them to be:

    https://fredrikdeboer.com/2017/05/13/no-really-race-is-a-social-construct/

    https://fredrikdeboer.com/2017/04/10/disentangling-race-from-intelligence-and-genetics/

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    • Replies: @res
    Well, then there is this (from the second link):

    Precisely because I don’t believe in pseudoscientific racism, I believe that we will eventually close the racial achievement gap, if we are willing to confront socioeconomic inequality directly and with government intervention.
     
    Anyone want to take bets on this? Seems unlikely without Harrison Bergeron style interventions.
    , @John Chard
    DeBoer's arguments against HBD are always best read as Straussian arguments for HBD. A personal favorite was the post on his now defunct old blog where he said something to the effect of: "Okay, so even when you control for income and all other specific measurable factors, the gap is still pretty large. But racism is such a powerful and all encompassing force that it can never possibly be quantified or measured, so we definitely know that the gap isn't at all genetic in origin."
    , @Hugh Myronbrough
    My bet is that we will solve racial IQ differences (without eugenics or Harrison Bergeron) at the same time that I sleep with Margot Robbie.
  11. Read More
    • Replies: @Barnard
    The Jacksonville PD classified him as White-Non Hispanic after one of his previous arrests? Are they sure that report is for the same guy?
  12. @Charles Pewitt
    Obama would much rather munch ice cream on Martha's Vineyard than explain the genetic heritability of racial differences to White upper middle class globalizers.

    The Democrats can't concede the genetic foundation of the racial test score gap in schools because that might jeopardize the massive loot the education industry gets from the government to close the gap.

    doubtful this would end it. Even if Liberals began to acknowledge HBD they would use it as an excuse to spend even more money on the disadvantaged. Thus if they agree that 60% of your IQ is due to genes we must spend even more money in an effort to narrow the gap, Although the gap can never be closed, it is more important than ever to leave no child behind. Plus millions of Americans are on the Education gravy train. Impossible to end it. Too many vested interests. Many may embrace it, since teachers and schools will no longer receive so much blame for bad performance..

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  13. I always found it funny that Gould’s Mismeasure of Man exposition of factor analysis made absolutely no sense, and no one called him out on it. That is, you can change factor loadings across factors while not affecting the ‘best fit’, or g in the case of IQ, but that just highlights the usefulness of g over the individual factors, and these loading changes are then offset by changes in the variance of the factors. His graphical critique shows he doesn’t understand that 2-dimensional plots of data always have at least one axis consistent between the two, as otherwise it makes no sense. The argument just disappeared, forgotten. Meanwhile, Gould gloms onto instances of other’s biased arguments or measurements as if it implies the hypothesis–eg, brain size and IQ–then and forever shows a particular null hypothesis (viz, no group differences).

    If factor analysis, or principal components, was arbitrary as Gould stated, no one would bother learning it, but it remains part of the statistical canon.

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    • Replies: @utu
    I did not read Gould's Mismeasure of Man, so I do not know what points he made. But I can give my opinion about g. I suspect Gould would have agreed with me.

    g is mathematically trivial

    Any nonnegative symmetric matrix can be decomposed into principal components by some method. Different methods yield different results. One of this component will have larger loadings than any other component on average. Arriving at g from the covariance matrix which from its definition is nonnegative and symmetric is a mathematical necessity. Just like N different fractions have a lowest common denominator so N mutually correlated variables (test results) will produce g (by some method) that has "advertised" properties. For example you can take 60 question Raven matrix test and haphazardly divide into four 15 question subtests. You will obtain 4x4 covariance matrix that you can decompose and obtain g that most likely, if you have sufficient large sample of tested participants, will have similar loadings for each subtest. Would such a g have some meaning and tell you anything about some hidden intelligence factor that you have just revealed? No, it would not. Jut like finding that a common denominator of 1/2, 1/7 and 1/8 is 56. What is the meaning of 56?

    g interpretation can be arbitrary

    Mathematically g for each method with which it can be derived has (or at least should have) strict mathematical definition. All other features and qualities attributed to g outside of its mathematical definition are arbitrary and are detached from g's definition; they can't be proven or disproven by one's ability to derive it mathematically. This mathematical g serves as pretext to utter statements about these features and qualities that are actually unprovable and have nothing to do with the inevitable existence of the mathematical g. Very often, frequently observed on unz.com pages, the concept of g and its mathematical existence is invoked as a purely rhetorical device to nobilitate the shoddy nature and lack of theoretical foundations of the IQ research. This argument works on mathematically unsavvy.

    g non-uniqueness

    g can be derived by different methods. Each method produces different g. The covariance matrix can be decomposed by means of eigenvectors which are orthogonal. Then g is associated with the eigenvector with greatest eigenvalue. This decomposition is unique and it is obtained with the principal component analysis (PCA). However one can combine the eigenvectors (by rotating them) and obtain a new set of also orthogonal vectors that are no longer eigenvectors. The orthogonality is a very important criterion for decomposition because it implies statistical independence among factors but by itself this orthogonality criterion does not guarantee the uniqueness of g. By doing so a new g can be defined that has a different distribution of loadings. Loading can be redistributed pretty much anyway one wants because the rotations can be arbitrary. When Spearman began his work mathematical tools to do PCA did not exist. Even if they did finding eigenvectors of large matrices w/o computers would be very cumbersome. He a priori postulated the existence of just one g so he defined a simpler less complex problem that guaranteed finding jus one g. He also looked for the second factor, the s-factor. These two factors were to account for the maximum of variance. This is how factor analysis (FA) was born. Invented by a non mathematician. Then once he had the two factors he still tweaked them by rotating them. He was using various ad hoc criteria's to decide on the angle of rotation. In 1950s in order to salvage the FA (there were criticisms on its arbitrariness) various mathematical criteria and algorithms were developed that invoked vectors rotations as well as non-orthogonal rotations. Nowadays FA starts with PCA when the dominant vectors are found and then they are tweaked and there are different tweaking methods. Each will produce different g. Thus g is not unique. Different criteria produce different g. One set of data may yield different g's depending which method is used. I presume that researchers following Jensen's work through the process of convergence eventually agreed which method to use so their results that suppose to reinforce each other (this is a social group with common interests) are consistent.

    There is also aspect of empirical non-uniqueness. Different batteries of subtest produce different g's that are mutually correlated but not identical. This is one of the reason why no scale of g was ever created. That's why g unlike IQ is not used to label the test subjects. You never hear that you need to have at least g=0.7 to go to college or what is Asian g as opposed to African g, right? Nobody knows if g=0.7 is good or bad because no scale was created nor agreed upon. So where does g is used? In research papers, where it is either argued by faction A that we showed that we have one g or by faction B that these two g's are not really the same g or by faction C that one g is not enough and we need to look at s-factor as well. Pointless and meaningless efforts.

    The bottom line is that most what you will hear about g is hyped up. It is just a rhetorical device. Nothing else. But once you understand the mathematics behind it you see it is a trivial concept that is also inevitable.

    I suspect that Gould's argument about g were correct though I will have to read him.

  14. There is currently no reason at all to think that any significant portion of the IQ differences among socially defined racial groups is genetic in origin.

    Has anyone who claims to believe this ever tried to explain the lack of technological development in sub-Saharan Africa prior to contact with outside groups?

    But that raises the question: Who does have the rhetorical skills to undermine the increasingly hysterical conventional wisdom and package the mature point of view about genetic diversity in the old soft soap that will go over well with Nice People?

    Even if Obama understood, they would turn on him in a second if he tried to push it publicly. This has become a religious belief for the left, particularly among those in the designated victim classes. Every aspect of life is emotionally based for them, no one is going to win them over by making arguments to reason.

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    • Replies: @Melendwyr

    Has anyone who claims to believe this ever tried to explain the lack of technological development in sub-Saharan Africa prior to contact with outside groups?
     
    Yes, of course people have, and with quite good arguments. The most obvious problems involve the large number of diseases infesting the region in which our ancestors evolved, and the difficulties in establishing sophisticated farming without wildlife devouring the crops.

    Those arguments provide quite cogent explanations for how an IQ gap developed - not to mention the other cognitive differences outside of bare IQ that many of us suspect occur along racial lines. Executive function, toleration of boredom, time preference, and all.
    , @Yak-15
    SSAs did not create written languages or mathematical systems. A liberal former coworker once mentioned dolphins are brilliant and could have built civilization if they could write underwater. I asked him why blacks never created a writing system and if they, in his opinion, were no less intelligent than Asians or whites.
  15. And that leads to a meta-point: Instead of liberals attempting to imply, using all their rhetorical skills, that only horrible people like Charles Murray think there is any evidence at all for a genetic influence on differences in average IQs among races, shouldn’t they be spending more time explaining why, if Murray turns out to be right, that wouldn’t be The End of the World? Right now, we get told over and over about how unthinkable and outrageous this quite plausible scientific finding would be and how only bad people, practically Hitlerites, think there is any evidence for it at all.

    One of the authors of that Vox piece, Paige Harden, has actually grappled a bit with the implications of HBD. See here, for example, which includes a respectful discussion of some of Murray’s views. I think she wrote the smart and reasonable bits of the Vox piece and then acquiesced in the two old commie dudes adding in all the insults, obfuscations and nonsense.

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    • Replies: @Vinteuil
    "...she wrote the smart and reasonable bits of the Vox piece and then acquiesced in the two old commie dudes adding in all the insults, obfuscations and nonsense..."

    So she's a coward, and a climber?
  16. So much of the “races aren’t real” narrative would be removed if Africans weren’t lumped into a single race; the fact that African-Americans are more different genetically from African pygmies than they are from white people, for example, isn’t really proving anything beyond that we need to have slightly more precise population group categories.

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    • Replies: @AnotherGuessModel
    But see, all this is rhetoric meant to obscure and derail. ("Race isn't real" reminds me of talking about illegal immigration, and someone countering "No human is illegal" or "Immigration isn't a crime".) You can easily distinguish between race having socially constructed dimensions (for example, the way South Africa, Brazil, and America each have different racial groups) as well as actual biological dimensions that are not clouded by that fact. You can assert that the concept of race is an imprecise yet scientifically sound and useful approximation of categorizing human populations, and that claiming race is the alpha and omega of genetics is a major strawman. It can and often is broken down into ethnicity and kinship too, and then you demonstrate how this does not render the category of race obsolete. You can even offer to do away with the word race altogether, as it is such a loaded word in so many realms - the political, cultural, emotional - and recast it as "genetic clusters/populations" or something like that instead. Then perhaps we could confront all the ethical and moral questions with clearer heads. I think this is the rhetorical countervoice that Steve is seeking, but they would have to be very well-versed in the science too, and that has proven hard to find.
  17. This was clearly a high effort piece by Turkheimer and Nesbitt. I wouldn’t expect anyone to throughly debunk something with this level of sneaky rhetorical sophistication 5 hours after publication. I certainly couldn’t begin to, particularly since I am not an expert. Little things jump out at me that bely bias and hostility on the part of the authors though:

    “Until you get to 5, none of the premises is completely incorrect.”. This would be more accurately and neutrally stated as “Until you get to 4, all of the premises are unambiguously true and non-controversial”.

    “These observations do not undermine the conclusion that intelligence is heritable, but rather the naive assumption that heritable traits cannot be changed via environmental mechanisms. (Murray flatly tells Harris that this is the case.)”

    I haven’t listened to the podcast, and Turkheimer doesn’t cite the point in the podcast when Murray “flatly tells Harris that this is the case”. I suspect that Charles Murray understands that the heritability of intelligence, height, etc would be much lower in populations exposed to extreme deprivation, such as wartime famine conditions. Murray has discussed the Wilson effect before – that the heritability of IQ increases with age, and early childhood interventions can increase the IQ of young children. Murray is likely referring to the failure of intensive childhood interventions to produce results approaching middle class white norms among lower and middle class African American groups.

    “There is currently no reason at all to think that any significant portion of the IQ differences among socially defined racial groups is genetic in origin.”

    There is very good reason. We have controlled for the most obvious factor associated with environmental deprivation: poverty. In the 2003 College Bound cohort of SAT test-takers, black students with family incomes between 80k-100k averaged 461 on the SAT-M and 468 on the SAT-V. White test takers with family incomes between 15-20k averaged 485 on the SAT-M and 488 on the SAT-V. By our colloquial understanding of what constitutes deprivation, the black students in a comfortably middle class income bracket are “better off”, yet still score worse than poor whites.

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    • Replies: @PoorGradStudent
    Turkheimer's twitter thread on this article has some good defense of Murray:

    https://twitter.com/ent3c/status/865214443432628224
    , @Yak-15
    The biggest problem is not that interventions work - they do. But as research has shown, the improvement is not enough to surmount the social-economic equivalent white/black gap. The other, more important problem is the incredible cost associated with these small improvements.

    Devoting enormous amounts of resources to marginally improving IQ may not produce positive returns. As western societies become more "diverse," there will be far too many dumbs to educate. A more cost effective measure of improving life outcomes is necessary.
    , @guest
    "the naive assumption that heritable traits cannot be changed via environmental mechanisms"

    Strawman!

    Let's say I'm the son of the greatest right-handed pitcher in the history of Major League Baseball. Genetically, I'm a born righty, with a killer arm that will give me all the ability I'll need to excel at baseball when I grow up should I train for it.

    Then, suddenly, at the age of 14, my environment conspires to cut off my right arm. Car accident, or whatever. Let's further stipulate I lose my left arm, just in case I could've magically switched to it. Now I'll never be a great pitcher like dad.

    Does anyone on earth believe this is impossible, because genes? No. Sorry, we're not that stupid, Vox.

    Simpler thought exercise: you're born to two mathematical geniuses. You get straight A's throughout elementary school in math class. Everyone expects you to do well in junior high, too. Then you get shot in the head and die. Your genes didn't kill you, but an environmental bullet did. Would Charles Murray naively think that's impossible?

    , @guest
    "socially defined racial groups"

    What other kind of racial groups are there? Even if they were defined scientifically, they'd still be socially defined. Because guess who does Science? Human beings, who have a tendency to interact socially with one another.

    How would these guys write the sports page? "The socially-defined Yankees topped the socially-defined Red Sox at the socially-defined Fenway Park one socially-defined day ago."

  18. @eah
    You think Vox is bad -- this reads like parody, but I don't think it is:

    From the American Mathematical Society (AMS) 'inclusion/exclusion' blog -- Get Out The Way

    If you are a white cis man (meaning you identify as male and you were assigned male at birth) you almost certainly should resign from your position of power. That’s right, please quit.

    An excerpt from one of the comments:

    We need to decouple success in mathematics from IQ. IQ is a social construct that cishet white men devised that defines “intelligence” on the basis of culture. Sadly, there is a direct correlation between high IQ and “earning” a PhD in a STEM discipline, which is all too reflective of how white cishet men have designed disciplinary concepts to reinforce their own power structures...It is fundamentally unfair and marginalizing for IQ tests and mathematics curriculum to be designed around the same white supremacist, cisheteronormative standards, thus marginalizing women of color. What we need isn’t just “fair hiring;” we need a radical reconceptualization of mathematics in a decolonizing framework.

    Read the whole thing there.

    We need to decouple success in mathematics from IQ. IQ is a social construct that cishet white men devised that defines “intelligence” on the basis of culture.

    Small addendum… “that defines intelligence on the basis of culture” – which actually means: Culture of white power, culture of white racism, culture of white sexism & sadism, discipline and punishment (at the very least).

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  19. @eah
    You think Vox is bad -- this reads like parody, but I don't think it is:

    From the American Mathematical Society (AMS) 'inclusion/exclusion' blog -- Get Out The Way

    If you are a white cis man (meaning you identify as male and you were assigned male at birth) you almost certainly should resign from your position of power. That’s right, please quit.

    An excerpt from one of the comments:

    We need to decouple success in mathematics from IQ. IQ is a social construct that cishet white men devised that defines “intelligence” on the basis of culture. Sadly, there is a direct correlation between high IQ and “earning” a PhD in a STEM discipline, which is all too reflective of how white cishet men have designed disciplinary concepts to reinforce their own power structures...It is fundamentally unfair and marginalizing for IQ tests and mathematics curriculum to be designed around the same white supremacist, cisheteronormative standards, thus marginalizing women of color. What we need isn’t just “fair hiring;” we need a radical reconceptualization of mathematics in a decolonizing framework.

    Read the whole thing there.

    eah, Oh how they write, but nothing “marginalizes women of color”, especially black women, like being a sperm receptacle for multiple men who have no interest in supporting you or nurturing your offspring.

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  20. @Dumbo
    OT: Another (high IQ) illegal?

    http://heavy.com/news/2017/05/richard-rojas-times-square-car-crash-suspect-video-isis-terrorism-dui-facebook-photo/

    The Jacksonville PD classified him as White-Non Hispanic after one of his previous arrests? Are they sure that report is for the same guy?

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  21. @eah
    You think Vox is bad -- this reads like parody, but I don't think it is:

    From the American Mathematical Society (AMS) 'inclusion/exclusion' blog -- Get Out The Way

    If you are a white cis man (meaning you identify as male and you were assigned male at birth) you almost certainly should resign from your position of power. That’s right, please quit.

    An excerpt from one of the comments:

    We need to decouple success in mathematics from IQ. IQ is a social construct that cishet white men devised that defines “intelligence” on the basis of culture. Sadly, there is a direct correlation between high IQ and “earning” a PhD in a STEM discipline, which is all too reflective of how white cishet men have designed disciplinary concepts to reinforce their own power structures...It is fundamentally unfair and marginalizing for IQ tests and mathematics curriculum to be designed around the same white supremacist, cisheteronormative standards, thus marginalizing women of color. What we need isn’t just “fair hiring;” we need a radical reconceptualization of mathematics in a decolonizing framework.

    Read the whole thing there.

    Okay, we need to have a business plan to integrates wokeness, “mathematics” and witchcraft now.

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  22. Who does have the rhetorical skills to undermine the increasingly hysterical conventional wisdom and package the mature point of view about genetic diversity in the old soft soap that will go over well with Nice People?

    If the remarkably even-keeled, articulate, and scientifically literate social critic/analyst Charles Murray couldn’t do it, who can? Some collective of thinkers will come through eventually. The webzine Quilette seems to be trying to tackle it. Wish I could participate somehow, but a lot of the science is beyond my paygrade.

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  23. But that raises the question: Who does have the rhetorical skills

    Sam Harris

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    • Replies: @Altaie
    His neocon credentials don't exactly strike a cord with the radical left.
  24. >and one of his hosts was hurt in a scuffle
    It was a woman, who disagrees with Murray but thinks he has the right to speak, who was physically attacked and hospitalized by an irrational and violent mob of military-age men, and that mob probably targeted her in part because she was a woman.
    Ask Colin Flaherty, the number one fuel of the current political zeitgeist is getting punched in the face and then getting told by every respectable media outlet that you were not punched in the face.

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  25. @LemmusLemmus
    So, reading through this, it appears that the authors agree with Murray about most of the substance. Why do they give it such a different spin? Maybe because:

    "No reasonable person would be offended by the observation that African people have curlier hair than the Chinese, notwithstanding the possibility of some future environment in which it is no longer true. But we can recognize a contention that Chinese people are genetically predisposed to be better table tennis players than Africans as silly, and the contention that they are smarter than Africans as ugly, because it is a matter of ethical principle that individual and cultural accomplishment is not tied to the genes in the same way as the appearance of our hair."

    It is a matter of ethical principle. That's one of the authors, Turkheimer, ten years ago. Source: https://www.cato-unbound.org/2007/11/21/eric-turkheimer/race-iq

    “…it is a matter of ethical principle that individual and cultural accomplishment is not tied to the genes…”

    I.e., OOGA BOOGA.

    And these people presume to call themselves scientists!

    Écrasez l’infâme!

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    • Replies: @Vinteuil
    I mean, c'mon - wtf do these morons think they're talking about?

    I've been teaching ethical theory for 25 years, and counting - and there is NO ethical theory known to me that has anything whatsoever to say about the relationship of "individual and cultural accomplishment" to genes.

    These people know about as much about "ethical principle" as a pig knows about oranges.
  26. @MOFO
    I was wondering if you have any thoughts on DeBoer's take on HBD? He seems to be one of the few liberals willing to dive in and address the facts as they are, rather than how he would like them to be:

    https://fredrikdeboer.com/2017/05/13/no-really-race-is-a-social-construct/

    https://fredrikdeboer.com/2017/04/10/disentangling-race-from-intelligence-and-genetics/

    Well, then there is this (from the second link):

    Precisely because I don’t believe in pseudoscientific racism, I believe that we will eventually close the racial achievement gap, if we are willing to confront socioeconomic inequality directly and with government intervention.

    Anyone want to take bets on this? Seems unlikely without Harrison Bergeron style interventions.

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  27. @PoorGradStudent
    This was clearly a high effort piece by Turkheimer and Nesbitt. I wouldn't expect anyone to throughly debunk something with this level of sneaky rhetorical sophistication 5 hours after publication. I certainly couldn't begin to, particularly since I am not an expert. Little things jump out at me that bely bias and hostility on the part of the authors though:

    "Until you get to 5, none of the premises is completely incorrect.". This would be more accurately and neutrally stated as "Until you get to 4, all of the premises are unambiguously true and non-controversial".

    "These observations do not undermine the conclusion that intelligence is heritable, but rather the naive assumption that heritable traits cannot be changed via environmental mechanisms. (Murray flatly tells Harris that this is the case.)"

    I haven't listened to the podcast, and Turkheimer doesn't cite the point in the podcast when Murray "flatly tells Harris that this is the case". I suspect that Charles Murray understands that the heritability of intelligence, height, etc would be much lower in populations exposed to extreme deprivation, such as wartime famine conditions. Murray has discussed the Wilson effect before - that the heritability of IQ increases with age, and early childhood interventions can increase the IQ of young children. Murray is likely referring to the failure of intensive childhood interventions to produce results approaching middle class white norms among lower and middle class African American groups.

    "There is currently no reason at all to think that any significant portion of the IQ differences among socially defined racial groups is genetic in origin."

    There is very good reason. We have controlled for the most obvious factor associated with environmental deprivation: poverty. In the 2003 College Bound cohort of SAT test-takers, black students with family incomes between 80k-100k averaged 461 on the SAT-M and 468 on the SAT-V. White test takers with family incomes between 15-20k averaged 485 on the SAT-M and 488 on the SAT-V. By our colloquial understanding of what constitutes deprivation, the black students in a comfortably middle class income bracket are "better off", yet still score worse than poor whites.

    Turkheimer’s twitter thread on this article has some good defense of Murray:

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  28. Be Charles Murray.
    Co-Author book detailing decades of research and include a tiny section dealing with differences between populations, not because you’re particularly thrilled about it but because you feel the need to put a PC spin on it since it’s an inevitable question.

    Pay the rest of your life for it.

    He’d have been better off if he’d not put it in the book and let others take the conclusions in a non-PC direction he’d have found deplorable and yet they’ll never forgive him for it.

    The Bell Curve is just an elaboration of what we all know and see around us. Nobody thinks the dumb guy in their class isn’t at least partly that way because of genetics. Likewise, nobody thinks the mathematics prodigy is that way because of any environmental factors. Mostly because we grew up with them when nobody was much trying to make them into anything except eat their vegetables and go to bed on time, they both liked playing and running around and yet one was always smarter than the other.

    As we socially segregate by IQ, interest and temperament as we age we lose this context. (You can say the same thing about politics) The idea that everyone is basically the same or could be made this way sounds more plausible.

    My father didn’t tell me to like Star Trek, I just liked sci-fi and stories about technology, complex plots and ideas. Society didn’t give me any positive encouragement, quite the opposite. If being gay is inherent, why can’t being a nerd be inherent?

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  29. Slightly OT, I used to laugh every time Taranto would refer to Vox as a young adult site in his Best of the Web column.

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  30. I’ve long argued that The Worst that liberals can imagine about the science isn’t actually so bad. Murray’s world looks an awful lot like the world we live in, which we manage to live in. But I don’t have the rhetorical chops to reassure liberals that life will go on.

    Life will not go on for these people. It would mean the end of their religion.

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  31. Anon says:     Show CommentNext New Comment

    http://www.jpost.com/Breaking-News/All-50-governors-sign-anti-BDS-statement-492079

    It’s good to be the king.

    Jews, who once took moral pride using boycotts to break segregation in the American South, pressured all 50 governors into supporting Zionist apartheid in West Bank.

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    • Replies: @RonaldB
    "50 governors into supporting Zionist apartheid in West Bank."

    It's pretty amazing to me how people so well-versed on biological differences in intelligence and behavior are so resentful towards identitarian Jews who don't happen to like getting blown up when they go out for a pizza.

    So, what's the difference between the BDS movement and the systematic denial of heritable racial differences? Both are derived from cultural Marxist pressure to dissolve any semblance of an ordered society. BDS is not simply not buying from Israel, but a systematic attempt to use leftist, Allinsky methods to leverage the power of governments and public institutions to enforce BDS against Israel, a rather minuscule entity.

    But, to have this kind of uniformity among governors on an issue which is really not relevant to the act of governing a state is indicative of a high pressure to conformity and coercion. Jewish institutions were not only involved in pressuring the south, but also South Africa and are currently supporting massive Muslim immigration. It may benefit the leaders of the organizations, but it devastates the average Jew, who has to live with the results like anyone else.

    My own opinion is that you need to dissolve the massive, state-supported institutions that make leveraging so productive. Then, you can argue the virtues of BDS in a rational, rather than coercive, manner.
  32. @Daniel Chieh
    So much of the "races aren't real" narrative would be removed if Africans weren't lumped into a single race; the fact that African-Americans are more different genetically from African pygmies than they are from white people, for example, isn't really proving anything beyond that we need to have slightly more precise population group categories.

    But see, all this is rhetoric meant to obscure and derail. (“Race isn’t real” reminds me of talking about illegal immigration, and someone countering “No human is illegal” or “Immigration isn’t a crime”.) You can easily distinguish between race having socially constructed dimensions (for example, the way South Africa, Brazil, and America each have different racial groups) as well as actual biological dimensions that are not clouded by that fact. You can assert that the concept of race is an imprecise yet scientifically sound and useful approximation of categorizing human populations, and that claiming race is the alpha and omega of genetics is a major strawman. It can and often is broken down into ethnicity and kinship too, and then you demonstrate how this does not render the category of race obsolete. You can even offer to do away with the word race altogether, as it is such a loaded word in so many realms – the political, cultural, emotional – and recast it as “genetic clusters/populations” or something like that instead. Then perhaps we could confront all the ethical and moral questions with clearer heads. I think this is the rhetorical countervoice that Steve is seeking, but they would have to be very well-versed in the science too, and that has proven hard to find.

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  33. It’s really despicable that these professors — who certainly know better — wrote such a dishonest article on Murray’s views.

    Every last word in the article is introduced, not to elucidate what is known, but to obfuscate it — and, worse, to smear Murray.

    Today, these professors can ride high in the esteem of their poorly informed colleagues.

    But they and their reputations will die in real disgrace: when their view is proved wrong — as not so many years from now it will be — their cowardice in attacking those who told the truth will not be forgotten.

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  34. OT: Black Panther and Luke Cage just got some company, meet Black Lightning.

    Wow, I knew the Green Arrow was notable for it’s high body count, but the Flash played the hero straight. Black Lightning straight up kills a few gang bangers here. Guess it’s okay since the guy doing it is black.

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    • Replies: @whorefinder
    And yet the most unbelievable thing about the show will be that a black guy stayed around to raise his kids and stayed married to their mom.
  35. @Charles Pewitt
    Obama would much rather munch ice cream on Martha's Vineyard than explain the genetic heritability of racial differences to White upper middle class globalizers.

    The Democrats can't concede the genetic foundation of the racial test score gap in schools because that might jeopardize the massive loot the education industry gets from the government to close the gap.

    “Obama would much rather munch ice cream on Martha’s Vineyard…”

    Please refrain from the tasteless gay ex-president jokes.

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  36. OT, Bryan Caplan (almost literally) argues in favor of “magic dirt.”

    Geography is Policy

    … The harsh reality is that geography has a huge effect on countries’ economic success. … Social scientists who accept the power of geography tend to get pretty pessimistic about development. If poor countries adopted the institutions and policies of rich countries, they still wouldn’t do very well. … And that’s where the geo-centric economists are completely wrong.

    Contrary to their own self-image, their view is radically optimistic. Consider the extreme scenario where geography is the sole determinant of national prosperity. Is there anything mankind could do to swiftly raise per-capita GDP? Absolutely: Move people from poor countries to rich countries. Is that the kind of thing that policy can change? Again, absolutely: Legalize movement from poor countries to rich countries. How much would that accomplish? Given the draconian regulations now on the books, such deregulation would swiftly transform the world.

    In the real world, of course, geography isn’t the sole global problem, so deregulating migration isn’t a full-blown panacea for global ills. But if Sachs is remotely right, this deregulation is the closest thing to a panacea we’ve got. Bad geography only retards human progress insofar as humans remain in locations with bad geography. And once it’s legal, humans will vacate the bad areas on a massive scale.

    http://econlog.econlib.org/archives/2017/05/geography_is_po.html

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    • Replies: @Steve Sailer
    Has Bryan ever been to Mexico and noticed the geography? Mexico isn't quite France, but it sure isn't Chad.
    , @Daniel Chieh
    But Finland is an icebox with high per capita GDP. How is this possible?!!!
    , @Forbes
    Nothing "almost" about that post--that's full-on Magic Dirt.

    What a bozo.
    , @John Chard
    Ackshually, Caplan is arguing that the primary difference between rich and poor countries is institutions, not geography ("magic dirt.") (And he's quite right.)

    Steve and iSteve commenters have a tendency to mock anyone who believes in anything other than 100% genetic determinism as believing in magic dirt. But the evidence is pretty clear that institutions have an effect over and above (real and important) genetic and cultural differences.

    Firstly, because it's always less time consuming to show that an argument proves too much than to show that it's wrong, consider that "magic dirt" proves too much: if true, there would be no reason for anyone to move from one country to another. Mexicans wouldn't gain any income from moving to America, Poles wouldn't gain any labor market income from moving to the UK, etc. because they would have the same allegedly definitive ancestry. I guess you can argue that people would move just to collect generous welfare benefits produced by higher achieving groups, but at least in America the Hispanic labor force participation rate is higher than that of any other ethnic group (I presume due to its lower median age.) It's a lot easier to make a living and raise a family by working a low wage job and collecting government benefits than just by collecting government benefits. And in the 19th century, large numbers of people immigrated to a pre-welfare state US. And institutions mattered a lot there--- southern Italians and eastern European Jews both did a lot better under well organized Anglo-Saxon capitalism than they'd done in their countries of origin.

    Secondly, because countries of people of the same ancestry who have different institutions imposed on them can have wildly different economic outcomes. The obvious and strongest examples being the post-WW2 divisions of Korea and Germany between capitalism and communism. Again, if ancestry is the only thing that matters, and anyone who believes otherwise is just a believer in magic dirt/tragic dirt, there should be no difference between North and South Korea.

    Thirdly, consider that African-Americans have much, much higher per capita income (~$23,000) than all Afro-Caribbean and Sub-Saharan African countries. The white admixture of 20% explains a bit of this, but probably not all that much. The difference between Euro-Americans and African-Americans in terms of income isn't due to institutions; but the difference between African-Americans and Haitians or Congolese obviously at least somewhat is.

    Finally, in terms of actual empirical evidence, look at Clemens', Pritchett's and Montenegro's 2009 paper on the "place premium". They demonstrate that for observably identical individual workers from less developed countries, there are massive income gains from moving to a first world country. MAGIC DIRT! MAGIC DIRT! MAGIC DIRT! (Just saying "magic dirt" is notanargument.jpg.)

    , @Hippopotamusdrome


    Bad geography only retards human progress insofar as humans remain in locations with bad geography. And once it’s legal, humans will vacate the bad areas on a massive scale.

     

    Does that mean Iceland and Sweden can send the migrants away from their cold, rocky soil to sunnier, fertile climes, like the Indus valley?
    , @Frau Katze

    Bad geography only retards human progress insofar as humans remain in locations with bad geography. And once it’s legal, humans will vacate the bad areas on a massive scale.
     
    He seems 100% confident that such movement will become legal.

    Scary.
    , @Barnard
    I didn't know there were people who still took Jeffrey Sachs seriously.
    , @RonaldB
    Thinking back, "Guns, Germs, and Steel", a popular book by Jarred Diamond a few decades ago, also made a quite literal "magic dirt" argument, augmented by specific details on the botanical diversity and geological features of a particular area.
    , @ben tillman
    delete
    , @Wizard of Oz
    That sounds as though it was meant to sound wise in the 18th century: it certainly doesn't sound wise now. The big geographic move is to cities and cities can flourish in any geographical conditions given a number of changeable circumstances like transport connections, education and skill levels, power costs etc.
  37. @Vinteuil
    "...it is a matter of ethical principle that individual and cultural accomplishment is not tied to the genes..."

    I.e., OOGA BOOGA.

    And these people presume to call themselves scientists!

    Écrasez l'infâme!

    I mean, c’mon – wtf do these morons think they’re talking about?

    I’ve been teaching ethical theory for 25 years, and counting – and there is NO ethical theory known to me that has anything whatsoever to say about the relationship of “individual and cultural accomplishment” to genes.

    These people know about as much about “ethical principle” as a pig knows about oranges.

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    • Replies: @guest
    It's the Gas Chamber Principle of ethics. If you admit the genetic basis of racial differences beyond a certain point--and no one knows where that point is, exactly--you *must* try to exterminate other races. Ipso facto.
    , @EH
    Indeed, the only proposition on which all self-consistent systems of ethics must concur is that one should prefer the better to the worse - though of course they differ in their judgements of what is better and worse. Therefore under all self-consistent systems of ethics one must judge which is better and which worse. Any "ethics" that claims that it is better to assume equality or that it is better not to judge is inconsistent because it is actually preferring what it claims to be better to what it claims to be worse, while at the same time denying the inevitable corollary of the proposition that one should prefer the better to the worse: that one must judge.

    The incoherent egalitarians go much further, preferring the worse to the better - perversity. The fact of inferiority confronting the dogma of equality is used as a justification for claiming that shortcomings of less capable groups are due to unjust discrimination and prejudice and must be balanced by treating objectively inferior people better than those who are superior to them. This leads to society systematically investing in the people with lowest prospective return, and actively discriminating against those who are capable of doing the most and the best, a policy which leads not to the promised utopia but rather to the fall of civilizations.
  38. But that raises the question: Who does have the rhetorical skills to undermine the increasingly hysterical conventional wisdom and package the mature point of view about genetic diversity in the old soft soap that will go over well with Nice People?
    —————————————–
    I would just argue that nobody who is serious really believes that IQ is the only thing that matters but that we believe that private individuals and organizations should have the autonomy to decide how much it actually does matter if only we had more respect for freedom of association and contract. Conscientiousness, creativity, rhetorical skills are also very important they are just harder to put a specific number on. I would also add that some groups of people are descended from groups that engage in cousin marriage – a practice that is still common in certain parts of the world that dampens IQ and causes health problems. I would also add to the discussion that prohibiting organizations from engaging in IQ tests and employment tests because of well meaning actions of activists has added to a student loan bubble and led to downward mobility for poorer Americans of all races so this is not a cost free policy.

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  39. @FactsAreImportant
    OT, Bryan Caplan (almost literally) argues in favor of "magic dirt."

    Geography is Policy

    ... The harsh reality is that geography has a huge effect on countries' economic success. ... Social scientists who accept the power of geography tend to get pretty pessimistic about development. If poor countries adopted the institutions and policies of rich countries, they still wouldn't do very well. ... And that's where the geo-centric economists are completely wrong.

    Contrary to their own self-image, their view is radically optimistic. Consider the extreme scenario where geography is the sole determinant of national prosperity. Is there anything mankind could do to swiftly raise per-capita GDP? Absolutely: Move people from poor countries to rich countries. Is that the kind of thing that policy can change? Again, absolutely: Legalize movement from poor countries to rich countries. How much would that accomplish? Given the draconian regulations now on the books, such deregulation would swiftly transform the world.

    In the real world, of course, geography isn't the sole global problem, so deregulating migration isn't a full-blown panacea for global ills. But if Sachs is remotely right, this deregulation is the closest thing to a panacea we've got. Bad geography only retards human progress insofar as humans remain in locations with bad geography. And once it's legal, humans will vacate the bad areas on a massive scale.

     

    http://econlog.econlib.org/archives/2017/05/geography_is_po.html

    Has Bryan ever been to Mexico and noticed the geography? Mexico isn’t quite France, but it sure isn’t Chad.

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    • Replies: @Altai
    Do you think he'll ever look at Australia, New Zealand, Canada and Britain and wonder how those places could have any less in common in terms of geography but similar in terms of human development?
    , @Hippopotamusdrome
    Maybe he means the poor should move south towards the equator to warmer temperatures, longer growing seasons and greater rainfall which is all more favorable to agriculture. Fruit trees like oranges only grow in the far southern regions of America because the rest is too cold, and tropical fruits like bananas not at all.

    Iceland, Sweden and Canada with it's snowy winters compare unfavorably with the warm climates and rich soils of Africa.
    , @Tom-in-VA
    Bryan would have to leave his carefully engineered bubble for that to happen.
  40. “the heritability of intelligence is no longer scientifically contentious.”

    and

    “There is currently no reason at all to think that any significant portion of the IQ differences among socially defined racial groups is genetic in origin.”

    seem to contradict one another. Apparently the caveat “socially defined racial groups” saves their assertion…

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  41. @Steve Sailer
    "But we can recognize a contention that Chinese people are genetically predisposed to be better table tennis players than Africans as silly"

    Why do people like Turkheimer even raise sports at all?

    “Why do people like Turkheimer even raise sports at all?”

    Because they know that there’s no price to pay for being wrong in the right way.

    There never has been. And the best bet is that there never will be.

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  42. “Modern DNA science has found hundreds of genetic variants that each have a very, very tiny association with intelligence”

    Duh. Hence, a bell curve.

    A gaussian probability distribution arises when the thing being measured depends on many factors, none of which have a large impact.

    I had to regurgitate a proof of this in a Probability and Stochastic Processes exam in the 2nd year of my BSc.

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  43. @FactsAreImportant
    OT, Bryan Caplan (almost literally) argues in favor of "magic dirt."

    Geography is Policy

    ... The harsh reality is that geography has a huge effect on countries' economic success. ... Social scientists who accept the power of geography tend to get pretty pessimistic about development. If poor countries adopted the institutions and policies of rich countries, they still wouldn't do very well. ... And that's where the geo-centric economists are completely wrong.

    Contrary to their own self-image, their view is radically optimistic. Consider the extreme scenario where geography is the sole determinant of national prosperity. Is there anything mankind could do to swiftly raise per-capita GDP? Absolutely: Move people from poor countries to rich countries. Is that the kind of thing that policy can change? Again, absolutely: Legalize movement from poor countries to rich countries. How much would that accomplish? Given the draconian regulations now on the books, such deregulation would swiftly transform the world.

    In the real world, of course, geography isn't the sole global problem, so deregulating migration isn't a full-blown panacea for global ills. But if Sachs is remotely right, this deregulation is the closest thing to a panacea we've got. Bad geography only retards human progress insofar as humans remain in locations with bad geography. And once it's legal, humans will vacate the bad areas on a massive scale.

     

    http://econlog.econlib.org/archives/2017/05/geography_is_po.html

    But Finland is an icebox with high per capita GDP. How is this possible?!!!

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  44. I realize none of you Hard Scientists think very much of the study of history, but if you’d crack a popular history book about, oh, the Jim Crow era, you would learn one very good example of something that gets repeated throughout history — humans treat those they perceive as inferior like shit, and will use all the power of the government to enforce that shit-state. If Murray is correct and people with significant sub-Saharan ancestry really do have less cognitive ability than those of European or Asian, the smarter groups will start imposing painful legal restrictions on the dumber groups. For one example, the death penalty cannot be imposed on someone with an IQ below 70. I have read Sailer suggesting, often, that a black person with an IQ of 70 isn’t nearly as impaired as a white person at the same level. So, why not eliminate that restriction on the use of the death penalty when the defendant is black?

    If you read history, you would learn that humans pretty much suck, and suck far worse in groups than as individuals. That is why ideas like Murray’s are so very appalling. He’s writing the script for the reintroduction of Jim Crow laws. (Also “The Handmaid’s Tale,” as his views of women are, if anything, worse than his views of blacks. We’re only good as breeders and floor-scrubbers and not one other thing. If you read the end of Atwood’s novel, she describes a character based on Murray as one of the architects of Gilead. And yes, I believe Sailer and Murray would absolutely adore being Commanders of the Faithful, with Handmaids and powerless, miserable wives. It’s their dearest wish to be in charge AND to make everyone else miserable.)

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    • LOL: Alec Leamas
    • Replies: @Vinteuil
    Kit - did you actually read "The Handmaid's Tale" all the way through?
    , @Daniel Chieh
    Not only one, but two victim groups! How incredibly holy! What an incredible ability to substitute fiction for actual history.

    At the current rate of progressive misery, I'll say that Jim Crow laws are a significant improvement. And despite the surprising lack of pro-feminist laws in the 1950s, not only did women find employment, but they had higher overall happiness and much reduced suicide rates. Amazing as it might be, perhaps treating everyone as an equivalent and soulless unit of economic output is both untrue, socially destructive, and existentially miserable? The mind wonders.

    And oh, yeah, no Handmaiden's Tale. And blacks such as Booker T Washington, etc, continued to exist and contribute.
    , @epochehusserl
    I realize none of you Hard Scientists think very much of the study of history, but if you’d crack a popular history book about, oh, the Jim Crow era, you would learn one very good example of something that gets repeated throughout history — humans treat those they perceive as inferior like shit, and will use all the power of the government to enforce that shit-state.
    ----------------------------------------------
    The equalists treat working white class like shit. They selectively enforce anti-discrimination laws and overlook uncivilized behavior by activists because they believe they are doing god's work. During Jim Crow blacks were never prevented from forming blacks only organizations. If a private employer group of people want to use IQ tests then why make a federal case out of it? The activists don't believe in equality for a second - they believe in payback. My ancestors were Italian and Native American and Eastern European and had nothing to do with the slave trade or jim crow and I have to listen to the most disgusting rhetoric aimed at me. For things neither me nor my ancestors had anything to do with! And all because people such as yourself want to virtue signal themselves into secular heaven!
    , @Owen
    So to summarize, it's okay to lie as long as it's for a good cause and we should all close our eyes to biological reality (assuming for the sake of argument Murray is correct) to make sure everyone feels good. Wonderful ethics you have there...

    Also, any unironic suggestion that the Handmaiden's Tale could become reality anytime soon suggests a dangerous detachment from reality. Can't you at least come up with a non-trendy literary reference? Or, I'll see your Handmaiden's Tale and raise you a Harrison Bergeron.
    , @Jenner Ickham Errican, @Alfa158
    "If Murray is correct and people with significant sub-Saharan ancestry really do have less cognitive ability than those of European or Asian, the smarter groups will start imposing painful legal restrictions on the dumber groups."
    No they won't. They'll just stop expecting those groups to perform at the same level and forcing equal outcomes. The brightest would still succeed, society would simply stop forcing artificial equal outcomes above the abilities of the mediocre and the slow.

    "He’s writing the script for the reintroduction of Jim Crow laws."
    No he's not. Jim Crow was used for the purpose of restricting criminal behavior. Compare and contrast Selma Alabama, or any of a hundred other cities, in 1962 and today. Your statement

    "The Handmaid’s Tale,” as his views of women are, if anything, worse than his views of blacks. We’re only good as breeders and floor-scrubbers and not one other thing. If you read the end of Atwood’s novel, she describes a character based on Murray as one of the architects of Gilead. "
    Read the book again. The society is indistinguishable from those run by Islamic fundamentalists like ISIS and the Taliban except without the violence, but Muslims tend to be browner than Europeans, so Atwood made them Christians in a fine display of Crimestop.

    You are projecting your own pathologies and misanthropy on other people.
    , @kaganovitch
    It's vanishingly unlikely that Atwood knew who Murray was in 1985, when she wrote the book
    , @27 year old
    >We’re only good as breeders and floor-scrubbers

    Not at all. Some of you can cook too

    , @bgates
    humans treat those they perceive as inferior like shit, and will use all the power of the government to enforce that shit-state. [35 words later] For one example, the death penalty cannot be imposed on someone with an IQ below 70.
    , @Anon
    Just be glad that you do not reside in the dozens of Muslim majority nations where blacks are still held as slaves , female genital mutilation is the order of the day , homosexually is punishable by the death penalty , women's testimony is worth half a man's testimony in court , conversion from Islam to Christianity is punishable by the death penalty and atheism is punishable by the death penalty. Talk about hateful , bigoted and abusive. And they are a cishet patriarchy to boot, bacha bazzi not withstanding.
    , @Difference maker
    Fine, but pay for them and police them, and keep them out of sight.

    That means no magic negro media bs as well, and no disparate impact lack of enforcement/lack of standards/frivolous lawsuit bs
    , @RonaldB
    I think there's something to be said for the claim that advantaged people will use the legal and political process to leverage their own advantage. For instance, in the Roman empire, the wealthy moneylenders, who were literally rolling in wealth, used their power in the Senate to pass draconian laws of indebtedness, including permanent enslavement, imprisonment, and death. At least one historian attributes the effect of these laws as the widely-known depopulation of vast tracts of land and the non-replacement birthrate. The depopulation, by the way, was widely recognized as a problem at the time, but they never developed any effective counter-measures.

    Human biology being what it is, you can expect all means, fair and foul, to be used to benefit those who have the power to implement laws.

    The existence of a problem, however, does not validate all means employed to address the problem. Before affirmative-action laws, there were quite real instances of qualified blacks being denied professional licenses, or women being denied positions for which they were individually qualified. The existence of that problem does not justify affirmative action, which is a by-the-numbers requirement for proportionality, qualified or not.

    The framers of the Constitution attempted to address the problem by having two legislative houses: one through popular election, and one appointed through elites. It didn't remove inequities by any means, but it provided a powerful check on the ability of wealthy and politically-connected elites to bend the state to their interests. I think that was a far better solution than what we have now as a result of legislative and judicial tampering to solve marginal so-called problems.
  45. I wonder if sexual selection does not explain the rise in average height of the Japanese.

    A technical question: if there is more mixing of a population so that women can preferentially select the tallest men so that the taller men have more children than the shorter men; what is the effect on the mean and standard error of the distribution? I would imagine that the mean would increase; and probably also the standard error.

    Also, with increasing mixing of the population; enabling the higher IQ men to go to college where the higher IQ women can find them; and leaving the lower IQ men and women “in the country” we might get a Flynn effect. But it’s a bit uncertain because the lower portion of the college-bound men might have fewer than the average number of children; and vice versa for those left behind. A detailed quantitative analysis would be needed.

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    • Replies: @Alden
    The post WW2 rise in height in Japan is due to a change from a rice and vegetable diet to a diet higher in protein and calories.

    Until about 30 years ago a lot of Japanese marriages were arranged by mothers grandmothers and aunts, not by sexual selection.
    , @RonaldB
    Suppose shorter, slimmer women were viewed as the standards of beauty, and taller, more desirable males, got their choice of the smallest, slimmest females?

    Abstract theorizing on selection criteria is pretty funny.
  46. @FactsAreImportant
    OT, Bryan Caplan (almost literally) argues in favor of "magic dirt."

    Geography is Policy

    ... The harsh reality is that geography has a huge effect on countries' economic success. ... Social scientists who accept the power of geography tend to get pretty pessimistic about development. If poor countries adopted the institutions and policies of rich countries, they still wouldn't do very well. ... And that's where the geo-centric economists are completely wrong.

    Contrary to their own self-image, their view is radically optimistic. Consider the extreme scenario where geography is the sole determinant of national prosperity. Is there anything mankind could do to swiftly raise per-capita GDP? Absolutely: Move people from poor countries to rich countries. Is that the kind of thing that policy can change? Again, absolutely: Legalize movement from poor countries to rich countries. How much would that accomplish? Given the draconian regulations now on the books, such deregulation would swiftly transform the world.

    In the real world, of course, geography isn't the sole global problem, so deregulating migration isn't a full-blown panacea for global ills. But if Sachs is remotely right, this deregulation is the closest thing to a panacea we've got. Bad geography only retards human progress insofar as humans remain in locations with bad geography. And once it's legal, humans will vacate the bad areas on a massive scale.

     

    http://econlog.econlib.org/archives/2017/05/geography_is_po.html

    Nothing “almost” about that post–that’s full-on Magic Dirt.

    What a bozo.

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  47. @Chrisnonymous

    But that raises the question: Who does have the rhetorical skills
     
    Sam Harris

    His neocon credentials don’t exactly strike a cord with the radical left.

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    • Replies: @Reg Cæsar

    His neocon credentials don’t exactly strike a cord with the radical left.
     
    Chord! As in harmony. Not "cord" as in bondage and discipline.

    (Though I must admit the prospect of disciplining the left by striking them with cords holds a certain appeal...)

    Why do we keep seeing these homophonic errors in smart people's writing today? Things like "tow the line" (lines tow), "didn't phase me", etc.
  48. @Steve Sailer
    Has Bryan ever been to Mexico and noticed the geography? Mexico isn't quite France, but it sure isn't Chad.

    Do you think he’ll ever look at Australia, New Zealand, Canada and Britain and wonder how those places could have any less in common in terms of geography but similar in terms of human development?

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    • Replies: @Hodag
    If one sees the sand belt golf courses outside Melbourne one cannot argue that Australia lacks for great land. http://golfclubatlas.com/courses-by-country/australia/royalmelbourne1/
  49. I’m glad that IQ is not inheritable. Now I can finally justify buying a cute Irish Setter to herd my sheep!

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  50. …”shouldn’t they be spending more time explaining why, if Murray turns out to be right, that wouldn’t be The End of the World? Right now, we get told over and over about how unthinkable and outrageous this quite plausible scientific finding would be and how only bad people, practically Hitlerites, think there is any evidence for it at all.”

    What “they” should be doing now, before even more sophisticated genetic research identifies the deluge of alleles contributing to smarts, is get down on their hands and knees and thank the Framers for the Constitution, the very document that elevates the individual, not the group. Unfortunately these same anti-science, self-righteous bigots have been undermining, demeaning, and seeking to re-write at every turn that document and its guiding principles, principles that exalt the person, not any group to which he belongs. Their attempt to define an individual by his group now has them denying, arguing, rebutting, and in general, revealing their stupidity.

    Go ahead, idiots. Re-embrace the Constitution and Western principles or face the coming revelations with nowhere to turn.

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    • Replies: @RonaldB
    Actually, I think you're wrong on the Constitution.

    The Constitution (first 10 amendments, actually) specified individual rights (with respect to the federal, not the state) government. But, the basic unit of the Constitution was actually the state. This is the basis of the electoral college, which gives priority to the state as a conceptual unit, over the individual. It is the number of electoral, rather than popular, votes which determine the President.

    In fact, the major failing of libertarian thinking is that it focuses on the individual, rather than the group. An example where the conflict becomes accentuated is in the question of free markets versus protected markets. A free trading market will devastate the lower economic class of a country like the US: products based on cheap labor and relaxed labor and environmental laws can out-compete local producers. Yet, the quality of life depends on more than the unit-cost of items.

    I'm not opposed to individual rights, but if you don't recognize the importance of groups, areas, and identity, you're going to miss a critical part of political reality and actually lower your chances of maximizing individual rights.
  51. @Mack999

    And that leads to a meta-point: Instead of liberals attempting to imply, using all their rhetorical skills, that only horrible people like Charles Murray think there is any evidence at all for a genetic influence on differences in average IQs among races, shouldn’t they be spending more time explaining why, if Murray turns out to be right, that wouldn’t be The End of the World? Right now, we get told over and over about how unthinkable and outrageous this quite plausible scientific finding would be and how only bad people, practically Hitlerites, think there is any evidence for it at all.
     
    One of the authors of that Vox piece, Paige Harden, has actually grappled a bit with the implications of HBD. See here, for example, which includes a respectful discussion of some of Murray's views. I think she wrote the smart and reasonable bits of the Vox piece and then acquiesced in the two old commie dudes adding in all the insults, obfuscations and nonsense.

    “…she wrote the smart and reasonable bits of the Vox piece and then acquiesced in the two old commie dudes adding in all the insults, obfuscations and nonsense…”

    So she’s a coward, and a climber?

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    • Replies: @anon
    I think she's a mother with young children in the early stages of her career.
  52. “Had I but serv’d my God with half the zeal I serv’d my king, he would not in mine age have left me naked to mine.” For “God” substitute “science” and for “king” substitute “the good opinion of my friends and colleagues.” Today’s liberals are completely unprepared to defend the moral axiom on which this nation was founded — I mean the axiom “that all men are created equal” — in the face of the findings of contemporary population genetics.

    This much is clear: “equality of opportunity” and “equality under the law” are not enough by themselves if the goal is a society in which everyone’s happiness is equally important (which is the real nub of the issue in my opinion). At a bare minimum it means we ought to oppose public policies that are a windfall to the already most highly favored among us, even as they disproportionately harm the interests of the least-well-endowed and most vulnerable segments of the working population, as is certainly the case with our country’s current third-world trade and immigration policies.

    But beyond that it means we ought to aim for a society in which anyone who works hard and plays by the rules can reasonably expect to lead a rich and fulfilling life, no matter if they are of only average or below-average intelligence. I’ve spent my life trying to imagine such a society:

    https://docs.google.com/document/d/13G0TkQwFZ9tP-6Oax64Fj8wIuh6pxQHmvktAQFieiUY/edit?usp=sharing

    One side benefit of such a society, I suspect, is that there would be a lot less tension between the races than there is now.

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    • Replies: @Robert Hume
    Do you think a guaranteed annual income might do the trick?
    , @Anonymous Nephew
    "we ought to aim for a society in which anyone who works hard and plays by the rules can reasonably expect to lead a rich and fulfilling life, no matter if they are of only average or below-average intelligence"

    You're describing Britain and most of the USA in 1957. We had that, and it's been deliberately undermined and wrecked.

    Commenter Kit is obviously an idiot (when cishet white men had all the power in the US, they removed Jim Crow and gave women the vote long before that) but he makes one reasonable point.

    "humans treat those they perceive as inferior like shit, and will use all the power of the government to enforce that shit-state"

    Who is more inferior in the eyes of our elite than cishet white males? You can literally celebrate their slaughter in popular movies.

    When I was taught UK history, one question never seemed to be raised either by teachers or students - why did ordinary people put up with it, with serfdom, feudalism, with your life being in the power of the big house, right up to Victorian times? Perhaps the question didn't need answering, we saw what happened to the Rising of the North under William I, Peasants Revolt, to the Pilgrimage of Grace, right down to the trades unionists transported to Australia. The sword, rope, or dungeon, your wife and children homeless, starving and/or worse.

    Those with power will use that power to maintain their position. The justification will never be explicit, then it was "they are defying God's will", "subverting the ordained order of society", "stirring up hatred and envy" - that latter pretty close to today's UK "race relations" laws.

    The post-war US and UK settlement, as Mark Steyn observed, is historically highly unusual and precious - and it's vanishing fast.

    , @RonaldB
    I think you're bringing up several points, some of which are good, some fallacious.

    I agree that people of lower IQ, and in general, lower prospects, should not be forced to subsidize people with higher IQ. Thus, the whole system of state-supported education and subsidies is a morass of unfairness and inequality. A plumber or laborer should not be taxed to enhance the education of the children of corporate managers.

    But,it's every bit as fallacious to expect the state to provide equality of outcomes or even equality of happiness. A woman with movie star looks, solid values and half a brain can parlay her gifts into a prosperous life as a mother or, if she prefers, a lucrative and rewarding career. It's just the breaks. Tall men are, on the whole, more successful than short men: they have a more impressive appearance, which counts for something.

    Also, some people are prone to addictions. Donald Trump recognizes his proclivity and deals with it by teetotalling; his brother dealt with it by drinking himself to death. Do you see the state intervening in that process?

    Here is what the Constitution recognizes as the goals of government:

    "We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity..."

    No more and no less.
    , @Logan
    The argument here is not about "a society in which everyone’s happiness is equally important." We very cheerfully accept the fact that less-intelligent and less-attractive and less-socially adept people will have less-happy lives. If we were a mono-racial society this would simply not be an issue.

    The issue arises because intelligence, attractiveness and social aptitude, however you define them, are not evenly distributed among "races," again however you choose to define them. The peculiar part is that we assume they "should be" so distributed and that any resulting disparity in outcomes somehow means the "dominant" race is invidiously causing that disparity.

    I've always enjoyed a thought experiment. Assume that tomorrow morning America wakes up and every person in the country has mysteriously become a blue-eyed blond. How will the lives of those who were previously members of "visible minorities" change? Answer, not much.

  53. Educated liberals are probably okay admitting that sporting ability is heavily determined by genetics because most of them don’t really care about sports. However, they are always going to play down genetic and biological explanations for intelligence differences between races and sexes.

    Education is everything in the liberal/humanist world view. With enough education there will be no violence, no economic inequality, no motor accidents, no illiteracy, and no intolerance. Hence the denial of data which indicates that some people learn better than others.

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  54. For all their obviously agenda-laden obfuscations, Turkheimer and Nesbitt have a point here, although you have to read between the lines in order to find it. Moreover, it is a point they are probably consciously or unconsciously denying themselves, for if accepted in its full implications it would invalidate not only the HBD explanations they are arguing against, but also much of what they themselves believe about modern genetic science.

    That point is that there is nothing like an adequate description of the whole complex causal concatenation between genetic sequences and measured IQ. In the absence of such a description, all we can do is measure statistical correlations which of themselves may be interesting, but prove nothing. Interestingly, both HBDers and T&N agree with each other that this is not a permanent problem, that the science is getting better, and that these vast and tumultuous seas will eventually be charted. This is where I disagree with the entire field.

    No causal description between genetic sequences and intelligence is forthcoming, nor will it ever be. This is not a result of our limited observational powers. This is a metaphysical barrier, not a physical one. Note, I am not saying that the problem is merely recondite, as if the causal connection exists but we lack the observational prowess to observe it or the theoretical panache to describe it. I am also not saying that the problem is intractably complex, as if the causal connection exists but is unsolvable by analytic techniques (as is the case with turbulence, for example). Furthermore, I am not even saying that the problem is irreducibly complex, as if the causal connection is real but is destined to remain shrouded in mystery due to essentially unobservable operations. I am saying that the resolution of the problem is literally impossible due to the confusion of metaphysical kinds.

    Intelligence cannot be explained in terms of genetics for the same reason that mind cannot be explained in terms of material. That is to say, no matter how advanced the science becomes, no matter how exacting the observations or how brilliant the theoretical framework, the penultimate step in such an explanation—viz. the link between fully realized anatomical, physiological, or biochemical structures which are themselves explained genetically, and the actual operations of a functioning mind—must remain an unbridgeable gap. Leibnitz’s Mill argument is as relevant here as ever.

    It would be correct and proper for actual scientists to point this out, but we don’t seem to have any of those anymore. Both HBDers and politically correct scientists alike have jumped onto the materialist-reductionist bandwagon; and, as is the case with the age-old debate between Keynesians and supply-siders, have doomed themselves to arguing with each other over the correct interpretation of a worldiew without realizing that the worldview itself is incorrect. This is one of the chief sources of my contention with HBD (the other being its uncritical acceptance of Darwinian evolutionary theory). Because this is a debate about something which is essentially nonexistent, it is a debate about unrealities. Because debates about unrealities can never be resolved, both sides can expect to go to their graves without ever having convinced the other of anything.

    Note that up until now I have said nothing whatsoever about “race” or about the political agendas into which race figures. In terms of the politics alone, I am thoroughly aligned with the HBDers. I would also be inclined to agree with Steve Sailer that the statistical correlations which have thus far been measured between race, genetics, and intelligence are “close enough for government work.” However, I would have to append the proviso that they are, additionally, completely superfluous. The ordinary information obtained by our senses is enough to tell us that blacks are usually not too bright, and it is enough to tell us who is and who isn’t black.

    In a sane world, a world unburdened by PC nonsense, that would be sufficient. Nothing is really gained by dragging genetic evidence into the picture, for in the end it amounts only to a garrulous way of saying blacks are black and whites are white. We should have known that already. Extraneous explanations are usually introduced into the discussion only by those who intend to obscure this simple fact, and I believe it is a tactical mistake for those who accept HBD’s political persuasions to fight the battle on the enemy’s turf.

    Hopefully we will soon see the emergence of an altogether different kind of approach, one that from the outset simply refuses to take up the philosophical antecedents of political correctness and reductionist biology, and instead relies on the irrefutable facts which are plainly felt and observed. To do so would be to recover not only philosophical truth but cultural confidence as well.

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    • Agree: Desiderius
    • Replies: @Forbes
    The next to last paragraph says it all...
    , @Dieter Kief
    It looks as if there'd be data showing things, of which you think they'dbe clear by simply looking at blacks and whites and asians etc.


    But the problems with different kinds of people in different kinds of societies (usually) do not arise from the fact, that there is this elite-discussion about genes and alleles and Charles Darwin and so forth. The problems are there - right in front of us, worldwide.

    Then there is something different alltogether: The question, what makes a decent behavior. That's cultural - there's just nothing else, it reasonably could be.

    If once you have decided to go down the path of enlightenment, it's hard to make a u-turn (that's what Purity is about, Jonathan Franzen's last novel - amongst other very interesting things) - and that's what Kleist had in mind, when he wrote, that as soon as the enlightenment thinking had come into the world, there was no direct way to - happiness, redemption, societal harmony ... any more. The Christian way to express this insight is, to state, that we're all sinners; the enightenment way would be to acknowldge, that science especially is not so much about the last solution as about the better argument - and the best solution only - - for the time being (= until proven wrong).

    , @Daniel Chieh

    ...and, as is the case with the age-old debate between Keynesians and supply-siders, have doomed themselves to arguing with each other over the correct interpretation of a worldiew without realizing that the worldview itself is incorrect.
     
    What would be the correct worldview for that?
    , @RonaldB
    Sounds to me like you're arguing that anything more complex than your casual observations are unknowable.
  55. @Kit
    I realize none of you Hard Scientists think very much of the study of history, but if you'd crack a popular history book about, oh, the Jim Crow era, you would learn one very good example of something that gets repeated throughout history -- humans treat those they perceive as inferior like shit, and will use all the power of the government to enforce that shit-state. If Murray is correct and people with significant sub-Saharan ancestry really do have less cognitive ability than those of European or Asian, the smarter groups will start imposing painful legal restrictions on the dumber groups. For one example, the death penalty cannot be imposed on someone with an IQ below 70. I have read Sailer suggesting, often, that a black person with an IQ of 70 isn't nearly as impaired as a white person at the same level. So, why not eliminate that restriction on the use of the death penalty when the defendant is black?

    If you read history, you would learn that humans pretty much suck, and suck far worse in groups than as individuals. That is why ideas like Murray's are so very appalling. He's writing the script for the reintroduction of Jim Crow laws. (Also "The Handmaid's Tale," as his views of women are, if anything, worse than his views of blacks. We're only good as breeders and floor-scrubbers and not one other thing. If you read the end of Atwood's novel, she describes a character based on Murray as one of the architects of Gilead. And yes, I believe Sailer and Murray would absolutely adore being Commanders of the Faithful, with Handmaids and powerless, miserable wives. It's their dearest wish to be in charge AND to make everyone else miserable.)

    Kit – did you actually read “The Handmaid’s Tale” all the way through?

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  56. The Vox piece is a masterpiece of elaborately rationalized denial of reality. A core value defining progressivism is the pious commitment to human universalism (the idea that all men are the same in all times and places) and egalitarianism. So you see an unbelievable amount of energy put into trying to cling to these values in the face of mounting evidence of human biodiversity.

    Steve is right that acknowledgment of this need not mean the end of the world. The fact that there are average group differences, whether biological or cultural, says nothing about any particular individual. There are highly intelligent (or stupid) people to be found in all races, just in varying proportional numbers.

    For progressives, however, acknowledgment of reality would be the end of their world, i.e., the end of the core belief in universalism/egalitarianism, adherence to which defines them in their own eyes as being morally superior people.

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    • Replies: @Forbes

    For progressives, however, acknowledgment of reality would be the end of their world, i.e., the end of the core belief in universalism/egalitarianism, adherence to which defines them in their own eyes as being morally superior people.
     
    This.
    , @a Newsreader

    For progressives, however, acknowledgment of reality would be the end of their world, i.e., the end of the core belief in universalism/egalitarianism, adherence to which defines them in their own eyes as being morally superior people.
     
    Also, this belief is necessary for progressives to justify their status and privilege. They can sleep soundly believing that they achieved their station in life due to hard work and good character. However, if they understand that their achievements are largely due to the luck of their inheritance, their egalitarian values come into conflict with their extravagant lifestyle. They are an aristocratic class without nobility. The cognitive dissonance is unbearable.
  57. @Kit
    I realize none of you Hard Scientists think very much of the study of history, but if you'd crack a popular history book about, oh, the Jim Crow era, you would learn one very good example of something that gets repeated throughout history -- humans treat those they perceive as inferior like shit, and will use all the power of the government to enforce that shit-state. If Murray is correct and people with significant sub-Saharan ancestry really do have less cognitive ability than those of European or Asian, the smarter groups will start imposing painful legal restrictions on the dumber groups. For one example, the death penalty cannot be imposed on someone with an IQ below 70. I have read Sailer suggesting, often, that a black person with an IQ of 70 isn't nearly as impaired as a white person at the same level. So, why not eliminate that restriction on the use of the death penalty when the defendant is black?

    If you read history, you would learn that humans pretty much suck, and suck far worse in groups than as individuals. That is why ideas like Murray's are so very appalling. He's writing the script for the reintroduction of Jim Crow laws. (Also "The Handmaid's Tale," as his views of women are, if anything, worse than his views of blacks. We're only good as breeders and floor-scrubbers and not one other thing. If you read the end of Atwood's novel, she describes a character based on Murray as one of the architects of Gilead. And yes, I believe Sailer and Murray would absolutely adore being Commanders of the Faithful, with Handmaids and powerless, miserable wives. It's their dearest wish to be in charge AND to make everyone else miserable.)

    Not only one, but two victim groups! How incredibly holy! What an incredible ability to substitute fiction for actual history.

    At the current rate of progressive misery, I’ll say that Jim Crow laws are a significant improvement. And despite the surprising lack of pro-feminist laws in the 1950s, not only did women find employment, but they had higher overall happiness and much reduced suicide rates. Amazing as it might be, perhaps treating everyone as an equivalent and soulless unit of economic output is both untrue, socially destructive, and existentially miserable? The mind wonders.

    And oh, yeah, no Handmaiden’s Tale. And blacks such as Booker T Washington, etc, continued to exist and contribute.

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  58. Vox has no comments for obvious reason, which is also funny in light of the fact that “Vox” is derived from the Latin for voice.

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  59. @Barnard

    There is currently no reason at all to think that any significant portion of the IQ differences among socially defined racial groups is genetic in origin.
     
    Has anyone who claims to believe this ever tried to explain the lack of technological development in sub-Saharan Africa prior to contact with outside groups?

    But that raises the question: Who does have the rhetorical skills to undermine the increasingly hysterical conventional wisdom and package the mature point of view about genetic diversity in the old soft soap that will go over well with Nice People?
     
    Even if Obama understood, they would turn on him in a second if he tried to push it publicly. This has become a religious belief for the left, particularly among those in the designated victim classes. Every aspect of life is emotionally based for them, no one is going to win them over by making arguments to reason.

    Has anyone who claims to believe this ever tried to explain the lack of technological development in sub-Saharan Africa prior to contact with outside groups?

    Yes, of course people have, and with quite good arguments. The most obvious problems involve the large number of diseases infesting the region in which our ancestors evolved, and the difficulties in establishing sophisticated farming without wildlife devouring the crops.

    Those arguments provide quite cogent explanations for how an IQ gap developed – not to mention the other cognitive differences outside of bare IQ that many of us suspect occur along racial lines. Executive function, toleration of boredom, time preference, and all.

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    • Replies: @Robert Hume
    The Cape of South Africa has a very pleasant climate. I don't see why a great civilization could not have arisen there.
    , @Barnard
    No part of that argument is unique to Africa. Superior civilizations were developed almost everywhere else in the world. In other places where they weren't like Australia, none of those factors would held back the Aborigines.
  60. @Kit
    I realize none of you Hard Scientists think very much of the study of history, but if you'd crack a popular history book about, oh, the Jim Crow era, you would learn one very good example of something that gets repeated throughout history -- humans treat those they perceive as inferior like shit, and will use all the power of the government to enforce that shit-state. If Murray is correct and people with significant sub-Saharan ancestry really do have less cognitive ability than those of European or Asian, the smarter groups will start imposing painful legal restrictions on the dumber groups. For one example, the death penalty cannot be imposed on someone with an IQ below 70. I have read Sailer suggesting, often, that a black person with an IQ of 70 isn't nearly as impaired as a white person at the same level. So, why not eliminate that restriction on the use of the death penalty when the defendant is black?

    If you read history, you would learn that humans pretty much suck, and suck far worse in groups than as individuals. That is why ideas like Murray's are so very appalling. He's writing the script for the reintroduction of Jim Crow laws. (Also "The Handmaid's Tale," as his views of women are, if anything, worse than his views of blacks. We're only good as breeders and floor-scrubbers and not one other thing. If you read the end of Atwood's novel, she describes a character based on Murray as one of the architects of Gilead. And yes, I believe Sailer and Murray would absolutely adore being Commanders of the Faithful, with Handmaids and powerless, miserable wives. It's their dearest wish to be in charge AND to make everyone else miserable.)

    I realize none of you Hard Scientists think very much of the study of history, but if you’d crack a popular history book about, oh, the Jim Crow era, you would learn one very good example of something that gets repeated throughout history — humans treat those they perceive as inferior like shit, and will use all the power of the government to enforce that shit-state.
    ———————————————-
    The equalists treat working white class like shit. They selectively enforce anti-discrimination laws and overlook uncivilized behavior by activists because they believe they are doing god’s work. During Jim Crow blacks were never prevented from forming blacks only organizations. If a private employer group of people want to use IQ tests then why make a federal case out of it? The activists don’t believe in equality for a second – they believe in payback. My ancestors were Italian and Native American and Eastern European and had nothing to do with the slave trade or jim crow and I have to listen to the most disgusting rhetoric aimed at me. For things neither me nor my ancestors had anything to do with! And all because people such as yourself want to virtue signal themselves into secular heaven!

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    • Replies: @Corvinus
    "During Jim Crow blacks were never prevented from forming blacks only organizations."

    Because the purpose of segregation was to have separate organizations! In 1902, W.E.B. Du Bois, found that 43 national unions had no black members, and 27 others barred black apprentices, kept membership to a minimum. Southern blacks were prohibited from creating their own groups out of fear of competing with southern whites.

    "My ancestors were Italian and Native American and Eastern European and had nothing to do with the slave trade or jim crow and I have to listen to the most disgusting rhetoric aimed at me."

    Correct. You do realize they were subject to vile discriminatory practices by nativists, who believed your ancestors were "gutter whites" unworthy of assimilation into WASP society, who lacked the intellectual capacity to comprehend Anglo-Saxon ideals of law and politics. Somehow, they were "allowed" to remain here through their own virtue signaling efforts.
    , @syonredux

    My ancestors were Italian and Native American and Eastern European and had nothing to do with the slave trade or jim crow and I have to listen to the most disgusting rhetoric aimed at me. For things neither me nor my ancestors had anything to do with!
     
    Read the SJW lit. It doesn't matter what your ancestors did. All Europeans are guilty. All Europeans must pay.
  61. After a couple of centuries fighting for ‘equality’, starting with the American and French Revolutions, NOW you admit you were wrong?

    Because you Americans are so insulated and historically myopic, you fail to see what a spectacular U-turn this is. Bring back Imperialism then! The conservative European imperialists were right all along! Damn Woodrow Wilson! And all the egalitarian revolutionaries.

    Conquer or be conquered is the way of the world. Power decides history. If you have it use it.

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    • Replies: @Daniel Chieh
    I don't know which part of Europe you're from, but if you're in Western Europe, I don't think you really are in a position to point and mock....
    , @RonaldB
    Machiavelli advised the ruler to abstain from foreign conquests unless he intended to uproot himself and live there.

    He must have foreseen our expensive misadventures in Iraq, Afghanistan, Vietnam, etc.

    The British colonial rule in Ireland and India was associated with famines and the starvation of millions. Was this the fault of the British? Some said, the imposition of British methods of commerce disrupted the native methods of preparing for, and alleviating, famines.

    Is this true? I don't care. I don't want to be responsible for the deaths of millions of people, and so I would prefer my government not be involved at all. There's a world of difference between leaving someone alone, and forcing lethal measures on him, even if he dies in either case.

    I don't mind the model in Saudi Arabia: the government there more or less gained power through its own treachery, and invited us there to provide protection and technical services. As long as we leave when asked to, I have no problem with that at all.
  62. @Kit
    I realize none of you Hard Scientists think very much of the study of history, but if you'd crack a popular history book about, oh, the Jim Crow era, you would learn one very good example of something that gets repeated throughout history -- humans treat those they perceive as inferior like shit, and will use all the power of the government to enforce that shit-state. If Murray is correct and people with significant sub-Saharan ancestry really do have less cognitive ability than those of European or Asian, the smarter groups will start imposing painful legal restrictions on the dumber groups. For one example, the death penalty cannot be imposed on someone with an IQ below 70. I have read Sailer suggesting, often, that a black person with an IQ of 70 isn't nearly as impaired as a white person at the same level. So, why not eliminate that restriction on the use of the death penalty when the defendant is black?

    If you read history, you would learn that humans pretty much suck, and suck far worse in groups than as individuals. That is why ideas like Murray's are so very appalling. He's writing the script for the reintroduction of Jim Crow laws. (Also "The Handmaid's Tale," as his views of women are, if anything, worse than his views of blacks. We're only good as breeders and floor-scrubbers and not one other thing. If you read the end of Atwood's novel, she describes a character based on Murray as one of the architects of Gilead. And yes, I believe Sailer and Murray would absolutely adore being Commanders of the Faithful, with Handmaids and powerless, miserable wives. It's their dearest wish to be in charge AND to make everyone else miserable.)

    So to summarize, it’s okay to lie as long as it’s for a good cause and we should all close our eyes to biological reality (assuming for the sake of argument Murray is correct) to make sure everyone feels good. Wonderful ethics you have there…

    Also, any unironic suggestion that the Handmaiden’s Tale could become reality anytime soon suggests a dangerous detachment from reality. Can’t you at least come up with a non-trendy literary reference? Or, I’ll see your Handmaiden’s Tale and raise you a Harrison Bergeron.

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  63. @Kit
    I realize none of you Hard Scientists think very much of the study of history, but if you'd crack a popular history book about, oh, the Jim Crow era, you would learn one very good example of something that gets repeated throughout history -- humans treat those they perceive as inferior like shit, and will use all the power of the government to enforce that shit-state. If Murray is correct and people with significant sub-Saharan ancestry really do have less cognitive ability than those of European or Asian, the smarter groups will start imposing painful legal restrictions on the dumber groups. For one example, the death penalty cannot be imposed on someone with an IQ below 70. I have read Sailer suggesting, often, that a black person with an IQ of 70 isn't nearly as impaired as a white person at the same level. So, why not eliminate that restriction on the use of the death penalty when the defendant is black?

    If you read history, you would learn that humans pretty much suck, and suck far worse in groups than as individuals. That is why ideas like Murray's are so very appalling. He's writing the script for the reintroduction of Jim Crow laws. (Also "The Handmaid's Tale," as his views of women are, if anything, worse than his views of blacks. We're only good as breeders and floor-scrubbers and not one other thing. If you read the end of Atwood's novel, she describes a character based on Murray as one of the architects of Gilead. And yes, I believe Sailer and Murray would absolutely adore being Commanders of the Faithful, with Handmaids and powerless, miserable wives. It's their dearest wish to be in charge AND to make everyone else miserable.)
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  64. @LemmusLemmus
    So, reading through this, it appears that the authors agree with Murray about most of the substance. Why do they give it such a different spin? Maybe because:

    "No reasonable person would be offended by the observation that African people have curlier hair than the Chinese, notwithstanding the possibility of some future environment in which it is no longer true. But we can recognize a contention that Chinese people are genetically predisposed to be better table tennis players than Africans as silly, and the contention that they are smarter than Africans as ugly, because it is a matter of ethical principle that individual and cultural accomplishment is not tied to the genes in the same way as the appearance of our hair."

    It is a matter of ethical principle. That's one of the authors, Turkheimer, ten years ago. Source: https://www.cato-unbound.org/2007/11/21/eric-turkheimer/race-iq

    It is a matter of ethical principle. That’s one of the authors, Turkheimer, ten years ago. Source:

    That’d be a nice white lie to tell in a political culture that’s not race obsessed and where the government didn’t consciously parcel out goodies inefficiently and inequitably for the purpose of concealing facts contrary to the lie. “Diversity” as our “greatest strength” is such a universal shibboleth that it requires a bit of empirical testing now and then, don’t you think?

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  65. @MOFO
    I was wondering if you have any thoughts on DeBoer's take on HBD? He seems to be one of the few liberals willing to dive in and address the facts as they are, rather than how he would like them to be:

    https://fredrikdeboer.com/2017/05/13/no-really-race-is-a-social-construct/

    https://fredrikdeboer.com/2017/04/10/disentangling-race-from-intelligence-and-genetics/

    DeBoer’s arguments against HBD are always best read as Straussian arguments for HBD. A personal favorite was the post on his now defunct old blog where he said something to the effect of: “Okay, so even when you control for income and all other specific measurable factors, the gap is still pretty large. But racism is such a powerful and all encompassing force that it can never possibly be quantified or measured, so we definitely know that the gap isn’t at all genetic in origin.”

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  66. @Cary Gooper
    After a couple of centuries fighting for 'equality', starting with the American and French Revolutions, NOW you admit you were wrong?

    Because you Americans are so insulated and historically myopic, you fail to see what a spectacular U-turn this is. Bring back Imperialism then! The conservative European imperialists were right all along! Damn Woodrow Wilson! And all the egalitarian revolutionaries.

    Conquer or be conquered is the way of the world. Power decides history. If you have it use it.

    I don’t know which part of Europe you’re from, but if you’re in Western Europe, I don’t think you really are in a position to point and mock….

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  67. @Charles Pewitt
    Obama would much rather munch ice cream on Martha's Vineyard than explain the genetic heritability of racial differences to White upper middle class globalizers.

    The Democrats can't concede the genetic foundation of the racial test score gap in schools because that might jeopardize the massive loot the education industry gets from the government to close the gap.

    Obama would much rather munch ice cream on Martha’s Vineyard

    So let’s see- $50 million for dual autobiographies with his wife. $400k for a single 90 minute speech. And room & board on Richard Branson’s island and David Geffen’s yacht (did Dave entertain the Obamas with early, never-before-heard outtakes of ONE IN A MILLION?) Puppet is getting some nice new golden strings!

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    • Replies: @Pericles
    Are the shareholders of these huge companies really on board with splashing out murky payola to various politicians and officials, over and over? Let's put it to a vote on the next shareholder meetings. It's time for an Ethical Banking initiative.
  68. “Heritability is not a special property of certain traits that have turned out to be genetic”

    Huh? Yes it is.

    How does one inherit something, biologically speaking, but through genes?

    Or are we talking about a trust fund inheritance, or something?

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    • Replies: @Daniel Chieh
    The argument is that beyond genetics, there are also cultural practices, food, toilet paper use, etc that get passed from parent to child in a normal household. But, well, we've shown such environmental effects to be relatively and at any rate, I'm not seeing propositions to promote "white culture" to be engaged by SJWs either.
  69. @Vinteuil
    I mean, c'mon - wtf do these morons think they're talking about?

    I've been teaching ethical theory for 25 years, and counting - and there is NO ethical theory known to me that has anything whatsoever to say about the relationship of "individual and cultural accomplishment" to genes.

    These people know about as much about "ethical principle" as a pig knows about oranges.

    It’s the Gas Chamber Principle of ethics. If you admit the genetic basis of racial differences beyond a certain point–and no one knows where that point is, exactly–you *must* try to exterminate other races. Ipso facto.

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    • Replies: @Sid
    To add to the matter, the exact point changes from year to year. Saying that blacks have curlier hair than Chinese people would have been considered blandly true 10 years ago, but it is not something you want to say around SJWs. They might go on and on about bodies that have been identified as black, and talk about social factors having a role to play in whether hair is curly or not having a role to play (what if black people straighten their hair to look more white?). Then they will go into how white people in 1842 identified black people as having curly hair and strongly imply you're a terrible racist for noticing that too.

    It sounds stupid when you lay it out like this, and it is stupid, but SJWs have made arguments like this time and again.

    The big difference between hereditarians and blank slaters on race is that hereditarian arguments make immediate sense and generally line up with what you've seen in your daily life, whereas blank slaters are obscurantists who play word games while implying you're evil, stupid, or both if you disagree or can't follow what they're saying. The article presented here doesn't have any arguments in favor of egalitarianism which make you say, "Wow, that makes sense!"
  70. Murray gets no credit for this?

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    • Replies: @J.Ross
    MURRAY UNPERSON
    THOUGHTCRIME IS DEATH
    THOUGHTCRIME DOES NOT ENTAIL DEATH
    Or just remember Trump criticizing the F-35 program for the same reasons Rachel Maddow cited. The goal is tribalism, not discussion.
    , @Buck Turgidson
    If memory serves, Murray lives in a 99% white/white bread community in Maryland just outside the Beltway. So he would rather live in a place like McAllen TX or a Somali 'hood in the Twin Cities vs all-white 'white bread' Newport Beach CA? First of all, that's a lie and secondly, not many people would go for McAllen over NB.
    , @Forbes
    I notice that Murray doesn't actually live in Little Vietnam or Little Guatemala (do these places even exist, outside of a two-block district of LA?), so he's virtue-signaling. Though, like him (apparently) I wouldn't want to live on Manhattan's Upper West Side either.
    , @unpc downunder
    Not quite sure why a Muslim is applauding this. Murray is simply admitting he is a typical upper-middle class libertarian male who likes Asians but doesn't like blacks or rough working class whites. He doesn't mention Muslims.
    , @Jack Hanson
    Stuff like this is why I wish the crowd had got its hands on Murray, whose last words could have been "At least I wasn't racist!"
    , @Anonymous
    I can relate. I might also prefer a Little Vietnam or a Little Guatemala ... or Little China or Little Mexico ... just not Vietnam or Guatemala or China or Mexico.
  71. @guest
    "Heritability is not a special property of certain traits that have turned out to be genetic"

    Huh? Yes it is.

    How does one inherit something, biologically speaking, but through genes?

    Or are we talking about a trust fund inheritance, or something?

    The argument is that beyond genetics, there are also cultural practices, food, toilet paper use, etc that get passed from parent to child in a normal household. But, well, we’ve shown such environmental effects to be relatively and at any rate, I’m not seeing propositions to promote “white culture” to be engaged by SJWs either.

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    • Replies: @guest
    Anyone who refers to passing down cultural traits with the term "heritability" is being misleading at best.
  72. @MOFO
    I was wondering if you have any thoughts on DeBoer's take on HBD? He seems to be one of the few liberals willing to dive in and address the facts as they are, rather than how he would like them to be:

    https://fredrikdeboer.com/2017/05/13/no-really-race-is-a-social-construct/

    https://fredrikdeboer.com/2017/04/10/disentangling-race-from-intelligence-and-genetics/

    My bet is that we will solve racial IQ differences (without eugenics or Harrison Bergeron) at the same time that I sleep with Margot Robbie.

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    • Replies: @Jim Don Bob

    My bet is that we will solve racial IQ differences (without eugenics or Harrison Bergeron) at the same time that I sleep with Margot Robbie.
     
    I would be fine if racial IQ differences remained unsolved forever if I could sleep with Margot Robbie.
  73. Argued like a woman , Kit . What an emotional mess you’ve made of this whole debate . Also , it’s YOU who wants to ” be in charge and make everyone else miserable “. Serious projection going on there , darlin’ .

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  74. @Intelligent Dasein
    For all their obviously agenda-laden obfuscations, Turkheimer and Nesbitt have a point here, although you have to read between the lines in order to find it. Moreover, it is a point they are probably consciously or unconsciously denying themselves, for if accepted in its full implications it would invalidate not only the HBD explanations they are arguing against, but also much of what they themselves believe about modern genetic science.

    That point is that there is nothing like an adequate description of the whole complex causal concatenation between genetic sequences and measured IQ. In the absence of such a description, all we can do is measure statistical correlations which of themselves may be interesting, but prove nothing. Interestingly, both HBDers and T&N agree with each other that this is not a permanent problem, that the science is getting better, and that these vast and tumultuous seas will eventually be charted. This is where I disagree with the entire field.

    No causal description between genetic sequences and intelligence is forthcoming, nor will it ever be. This is not a result of our limited observational powers. This is a metaphysical barrier, not a physical one. Note, I am not saying that the problem is merely recondite, as if the causal connection exists but we lack the observational prowess to observe it or the theoretical panache to describe it. I am also not saying that the problem is intractably complex, as if the causal connection exists but is unsolvable by analytic techniques (as is the case with turbulence, for example). Furthermore, I am not even saying that the problem is irreducibly complex, as if the causal connection is real but is destined to remain shrouded in mystery due to essentially unobservable operations. I am saying that the resolution of the problem is literally impossible due to the confusion of metaphysical kinds.

    Intelligence cannot be explained in terms of genetics for the same reason that mind cannot be explained in terms of material. That is to say, no matter how advanced the science becomes, no matter how exacting the observations or how brilliant the theoretical framework, the penultimate step in such an explanation---viz. the link between fully realized anatomical, physiological, or biochemical structures which are themselves explained genetically, and the actual operations of a functioning mind---must remain an unbridgeable gap. Leibnitz's Mill argument is as relevant here as ever.

    It would be correct and proper for actual scientists to point this out, but we don't seem to have any of those anymore. Both HBDers and politically correct scientists alike have jumped onto the materialist-reductionist bandwagon; and, as is the case with the age-old debate between Keynesians and supply-siders, have doomed themselves to arguing with each other over the correct interpretation of a worldiew without realizing that the worldview itself is incorrect. This is one of the chief sources of my contention with HBD (the other being its uncritical acceptance of Darwinian evolutionary theory). Because this is a debate about something which is essentially nonexistent, it is a debate about unrealities. Because debates about unrealities can never be resolved, both sides can expect to go to their graves without ever having convinced the other of anything.

    Note that up until now I have said nothing whatsoever about "race" or about the political agendas into which race figures. In terms of the politics alone, I am thoroughly aligned with the HBDers. I would also be inclined to agree with Steve Sailer that the statistical correlations which have thus far been measured between race, genetics, and intelligence are "close enough for government work." However, I would have to append the proviso that they are, additionally, completely superfluous. The ordinary information obtained by our senses is enough to tell us that blacks are usually not too bright, and it is enough to tell us who is and who isn't black.

    In a sane world, a world unburdened by PC nonsense, that would be sufficient. Nothing is really gained by dragging genetic evidence into the picture, for in the end it amounts only to a garrulous way of saying blacks are black and whites are white. We should have known that already. Extraneous explanations are usually introduced into the discussion only by those who intend to obscure this simple fact, and I believe it is a tactical mistake for those who accept HBD's political persuasions to fight the battle on the enemy's turf.

    Hopefully we will soon see the emergence of an altogether different kind of approach, one that from the outset simply refuses to take up the philosophical antecedents of political correctness and reductionist biology, and instead relies on the irrefutable facts which are plainly felt and observed. To do so would be to recover not only philosophical truth but cultural confidence as well.

    The next to last paragraph says it all…

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  75. @Thucydides
    The Vox piece is a masterpiece of elaborately rationalized denial of reality. A core value defining progressivism is the pious commitment to human universalism (the idea that all men are the same in all times and places) and egalitarianism. So you see an unbelievable amount of energy put into trying to cling to these values in the face of mounting evidence of human biodiversity.

    Steve is right that acknowledgment of this need not mean the end of the world. The fact that there are average group differences, whether biological or cultural, says nothing about any particular individual. There are highly intelligent (or stupid) people to be found in all races, just in varying proportional numbers.

    For progressives, however, acknowledgment of reality would be the end of their world, i.e., the end of the core belief in universalism/egalitarianism, adherence to which defines them in their own eyes as being morally superior people.

    For progressives, however, acknowledgment of reality would be the end of their world, i.e., the end of the core belief in universalism/egalitarianism, adherence to which defines them in their own eyes as being morally superior people.

    This.

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  76. @Dave Pinsen
    Murray gets no credit for this?
    https://twitter.com/mksheikh/status/744909255338262528

    MURRAY UNPERSON
    THOUGHTCRIME IS DEATH
    THOUGHTCRIME DOES NOT ENTAIL DEATH
    Or just remember Trump criticizing the F-35 program for the same reasons Rachel Maddow cited. The goal is tribalism, not discussion.

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  77. All of these things are correlated with genetics, but they are also all continuous and dynamic, both geographically and historically.

    It’s almost as if the Obama Administration believe such categories are good enough for government work.

    As many on this site before me have so valuably pointed out, pretty much EVERYTHING is dynamic and on a continuum. There are no such categories as adolescent and adult, right, because an average 17 year old and an average 18 year old are closer in age and interests and mentality than the 18 year old is to a 22 year old, or the 17 year old is to a 13 year old? Similarly there are no such things as blue eyes or black hair because color is all on a continuum.

    To the point though, a couple years ago the Obama administration invented out of whole cloth the category of moderate anti-Assad democratic Syrian rebel who-does-not-eat-the-organs-of-his-enemies and decided that anyone in this category will receive millions of $’s of money in “training”, and anyone outside this category will receive a Hellfire missile up the ar$e. Yet god forbid we trample over nature’s glorious dynamic continuity by saying someone who is or is not smart is probably typical/atypical of some ethnic or racial group.

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    • Replies: @Daniel Chieh
    There is neither day nor night because twilight exists. Most liberal viewpoints make a lot more sense once you have taken a copious amount of psychotropics.
  78. anon says:     Show CommentNext New Comment

    One thing that’s fun is to ask them what evidence they have that all groups actually ARE equal in terms of intelligence. They’ll often be surprised that someone would ask them that.

    If they can’t, just point out that a belief without any actual evidence is much more like a religious belief than a scientific one.

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  79. @Abe

    All of these things are correlated with genetics, but they are also all continuous and dynamic, both geographically and historically.

    It's almost as if the Obama Administration believe such categories are good enough for government work.
     

    As many on this site before me have so valuably pointed out, pretty much EVERYTHING is dynamic and on a continuum. There are no such categories as adolescent and adult, right, because an average 17 year old and an average 18 year old are closer in age and interests and mentality than the 18 year old is to a 22 year old, or the 17 year old is to a 13 year old? Similarly there are no such things as blue eyes or black hair because color is all on a continuum.

    To the point though, a couple years ago the Obama administration invented out of whole cloth the category of moderate anti-Assad democratic Syrian rebel who-does-not-eat-the-organs-of-his-enemies and decided that anyone in this category will receive millions of $'s of money in "training", and anyone outside this category will receive a Hellfire missile up the ar$e. Yet god forbid we trample over nature's glorious dynamic continuity by saying someone who is or is not smart is probably typical/atypical of some ethnic or racial group.

    There is neither day nor night because twilight exists. Most liberal viewpoints make a lot more sense once you have taken a copious amount of psychotropics.

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  80. @FactsAreImportant
    OT, Bryan Caplan (almost literally) argues in favor of "magic dirt."

    Geography is Policy

    ... The harsh reality is that geography has a huge effect on countries' economic success. ... Social scientists who accept the power of geography tend to get pretty pessimistic about development. If poor countries adopted the institutions and policies of rich countries, they still wouldn't do very well. ... And that's where the geo-centric economists are completely wrong.

    Contrary to their own self-image, their view is radically optimistic. Consider the extreme scenario where geography is the sole determinant of national prosperity. Is there anything mankind could do to swiftly raise per-capita GDP? Absolutely: Move people from poor countries to rich countries. Is that the kind of thing that policy can change? Again, absolutely: Legalize movement from poor countries to rich countries. How much would that accomplish? Given the draconian regulations now on the books, such deregulation would swiftly transform the world.

    In the real world, of course, geography isn't the sole global problem, so deregulating migration isn't a full-blown panacea for global ills. But if Sachs is remotely right, this deregulation is the closest thing to a panacea we've got. Bad geography only retards human progress insofar as humans remain in locations with bad geography. And once it's legal, humans will vacate the bad areas on a massive scale.

     

    http://econlog.econlib.org/archives/2017/05/geography_is_po.html

    Ackshually, Caplan is arguing that the primary difference between rich and poor countries is institutions, not geography (“magic dirt.”) (And he’s quite right.)

    Steve and iSteve commenters have a tendency to mock anyone who believes in anything other than 100% genetic determinism as believing in magic dirt. But the evidence is pretty clear that institutions have an effect over and above (real and important) genetic and cultural differences.

    Firstly, because it’s always less time consuming to show that an argument proves too much than to show that it’s wrong, consider that “magic dirt” proves too much: if true, there would be no reason for anyone to move from one country to another. Mexicans wouldn’t gain any income from moving to America, Poles wouldn’t gain any labor market income from moving to the UK, etc. because they would have the same allegedly definitive ancestry. I guess you can argue that people would move just to collect generous welfare benefits produced by higher achieving groups, but at least in America the Hispanic labor force participation rate is higher than that of any other ethnic group (I presume due to its lower median age.) It’s a lot easier to make a living and raise a family by working a low wage job and collecting government benefits than just by collecting government benefits. And in the 19th century, large numbers of people immigrated to a pre-welfare state US. And institutions mattered a lot there— southern Italians and eastern European Jews both did a lot better under well organized Anglo-Saxon capitalism than they’d done in their countries of origin.

    Secondly, because countries of people of the same ancestry who have different institutions imposed on them can have wildly different economic outcomes. The obvious and strongest examples being the post-WW2 divisions of Korea and Germany between capitalism and communism. Again, if ancestry is the only thing that matters, and anyone who believes otherwise is just a believer in magic dirt/tragic dirt, there should be no difference between North and South Korea.

    Thirdly, consider that African-Americans have much, much higher per capita income (~$23,000) than all Afro-Caribbean and Sub-Saharan African countries. The white admixture of 20% explains a bit of this, but probably not all that much. The difference between Euro-Americans and African-Americans in terms of income isn’t due to institutions; but the difference between African-Americans and Haitians or Congolese obviously at least somewhat is.

    Finally, in terms of actual empirical evidence, look at Clemens’, Pritchett’s and Montenegro’s 2009 paper on the “place premium”. They demonstrate that for observably identical individual workers from less developed countries, there are massive income gains from moving to a first world country. MAGIC DIRT! MAGIC DIRT! MAGIC DIRT! (Just saying “magic dirt” is notanargument.jpg.)

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    • Replies: @Jenner Ickham Errican, @Anonymous Nephew
    The killer "institutions > genes" factoid is China under the Great Leap Forward or the Cultural Revolution, and China today.

    Same people, same genes.

    (China was still putting satellites in orbit under Mao, just as North Korea is allegedly producing ICBMs today).

    On the other hand, that only 'really' shows bad institutions can be stronger than high-IQ genes. Britain left the former Rhodesia and Singapore with a reasonable legal system, yet Zimbabwe suffered while Singapore prospered.
    , @Yak-15
    Who creates, builds and maintains institutions? If institutions are the key, why did the majority of non-anglo populated former British empire states all perpetuate/descend into obscurity and poverty?

    All wage rates in the US are substantially higher than the nations you cite. This is nothing more than a reflection of their individual economies. Are you actually arguing a McDonald's worker in the US produces more economic output than one in Jamiaca? What about a basic agricultural worker? Does a strawberry picker in the US provide more value than a coffee plantation worker in Guatamala? What about a doctor in Mexico versus a doctor in the United States? Assuming the same skills in each, each is compensated differently as a reflection of differences in national income and the going rate for labor. The gains in value are due to simply joining a new economy with higher wage rates. If you bring in enough foreign workers, the wage rates converge between nations.

    I would not argue that institutions do not matter. But they do not seem to be the most important. Human capital transcends all.
    , @AnotherDad

    Ackshually, Caplan is arguing that the primary difference between rich and poor countries is institutions, not geography (“magic dirt.”) (And he’s quite right.)
     
    Nope, the primary difference is people--genes and culture. The institutions flow from them in a semi-chaotic process, and are only one piece of a whole baggage train of capabilities or lack there of that people drag along with them.

    Steve and iSteve commenters have a tendency to mock anyone who believes in anything other than 100% genetic determinism as believing in magic dirt.
     
    Straw man. Everyone here is aware of the North/South Korea example. People are also aware that for some set of genetic/cultural/historical reasons China has been civilized for a very long time, but declined relative to the West, was poor a century back but is now rapidly gaining ground against the West.

    In fact, your statement is the absolute reverse of the reality in all these nature/nurture debates. It's always the nurturists who are absolutists and insist that anyone who brings in genetics is a racist who has been discredited by ... uh ... well ... uh ... what we all know must be true! Geez--witness the very article Steve's referencing here. Turkheimer's claiming that there's no evidence for nature/genes in group differences. Which of course is utter nonsense.

    Thirdly, consider that African-Americans have much, much higher per capita ...
     
    African-Americans have much higher per capita incomes than Africans almost entirely because they live in a white developed, white run society. A well-run white society is hugely more prosperous (and more well ordered) and provides labor market opportunities even for people of mediocre/low skills that pay much, much better than they do in less developed/lower IQ societies.

    You could leave US blacks our "institutions" and even our capital base, but if white people themselves left, the US would quickly start heading in the African direction. Even if "magic institutions"--rule of law--were maintained, their white free US would still head in the African direction.

    They demonstrate that for observably identical individual workers from less developed countries, there are massive income gains from moving to a first world country. MAGIC DIRT! MAGIC DIRT! MAGIC DIRT!
     
    John, you apparently don't understand Steve's quip of "Magic Dirt".

    "Magic Dirt" just refers to all these claims--mostly in reference to blacks--that somehow whites are stealing/hoarding the good stuff--nice neighborhoods, "good schools", etc.--and excluding blacks holding them down. And further, if all this sort of "structural racism" was eliminated then blacks would be doing well. And yes, when a black moves from a black to a white neighborhood, they get a more peaceful, pleasant living experience. Likewise moving to a white school they do get a better school. Being in the white neighborhood doesn't stop them from acting black. Being in the white school doesn't raise their IQ. And when enough of their friends and family have also moved in the neighborhood stops being a nice neighborhood, the school stops being a "good school". Because there never was any "magic dirt". White people have nice things because white people create nice things.

    "Magic dirt" does not imply that Mexicans moving the the US (or Africans to Europe) won't see their incomes rise relative to back home. Steve and everyone here all know that. The migrants incomes will rise because whites have created more peaceful and prosperous nations that as a result have much higher wages even for identical lower skill labor. (And because white societies are more efficient at using their labor.) But if this migration continues unchecked ... and Western nations fill with Mexicans or Africans, those nations will become crappier and crappier until they resemble Mexico or Africa. Because in fact, it is not "magic dirt", but only the genes and culture of white people behind white nations' prosperity.
  81. @Dave Pinsen
    Murray gets no credit for this?
    https://twitter.com/mksheikh/status/744909255338262528

    If memory serves, Murray lives in a 99% white/white bread community in Maryland just outside the Beltway. So he would rather live in a place like McAllen TX or a Somali ‘hood in the Twin Cities vs all-white ‘white bread’ Newport Beach CA? First of all, that’s a lie and secondly, not many people would go for McAllen over NB.

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    • Replies: @kaganovitch
    By "Many whitebread communities". he means Fishtown and the like.
    , @Immigrant from former USSR
    Here is an extremely important work by Murray:
    https://www.amazon.com/Income-Inequality-Studies-Understanding-Economic/dp/0844770949
    "Income Inequality and IQ (AEI Studies on Understanding Economic Inequality) – January 1, 1998".
    Let us make a judgement about this Scientist by his greatest achievements,
    not by flaws of his character (which flaws each of us mortals has.)
    Supposedly great physicist Albert Michelson (rumors)
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Albert_A._Michelson
    was wife beater,
    not to be confused with the specific type of a garment for males:
    https://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_ss_i_4_6?url=search-alias%3Dfashion-mens&field-keywords=white+beaters+for+men&sprefix=beater%
    But we remember and respect Michelson for outstanding achievements in Physics.
  82. @Luke Lea
    “Had I but serv'd my God with half the zeal I serv'd my king, he would not in mine age have left me naked to mine." For "God" substitute "science" and for "king" substitute "the good opinion of my friends and colleagues." Today's liberals are completely unprepared to defend the moral axiom on which this nation was founded -- I mean the axiom "that all men are created equal" -- in the face of the findings of contemporary population genetics.

    This much is clear: "equality of opportunity" and "equality under the law" are not enough by themselves if the goal is a society in which everyone's happiness is equally important (which is the real nub of the issue in my opinion). At a bare minimum it means we ought to oppose public policies that are a windfall to the already most highly favored among us, even as they disproportionately harm the interests of the least-well-endowed and most vulnerable segments of the working population, as is certainly the case with our country's current third-world trade and immigration policies.

    But beyond that it means we ought to aim for a society in which anyone who works hard and plays by the rules can reasonably expect to lead a rich and fulfilling life, no matter if they are of only average or below-average intelligence. I've spent my life trying to imagine such a society:

    https://docs.google.com/document/d/13G0TkQwFZ9tP-6Oax64Fj8wIuh6pxQHmvktAQFieiUY/edit?usp=sharing

    One side benefit of such a society, I suspect, is that there would be a lot less tension between the races than there is now.

    Do you think a guaranteed annual income might do the trick?

    Read More
    • Replies: @Luke Lea
    Robert Hume asks, "Do you think a guaranteed annual income might do the trick?"

    Yes, I think it is an important part of the answer, at least in the form Milton Friedman proposed (a negative income tax), whose sophistication I did not appreciate until I watched this 15 minute interview on Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xtpgkX588nM

    That still leaves the problem of how to raise the revenues required to fully fund such a program. For that I propose a single parameter version of the graduated expenditure tax, which I describe in a one-page appendix to my Notes Toward a New Way of Life in America:

    https://docs.google.com/document/d/1WIdVnQEWdYgYYly9iKkesWCVhfINvbtwuVq2GMOxMbw/edit?usp=sharing

    , @Neuday

    Do you think a guaranteed annual income might do the trick?
     
    Free cash, without a big beautiful wall? I think we all know how that would play out.
  83. @Dave Pinsen
    Murray gets no credit for this?
    https://twitter.com/mksheikh/status/744909255338262528

    I notice that Murray doesn’t actually live in Little Vietnam or Little Guatemala (do these places even exist, outside of a two-block district of LA?), so he’s virtue-signaling. Though, like him (apparently) I wouldn’t want to live on Manhattan’s Upper West Side either.

    Read More
  84. @Melendwyr

    Has anyone who claims to believe this ever tried to explain the lack of technological development in sub-Saharan Africa prior to contact with outside groups?
     
    Yes, of course people have, and with quite good arguments. The most obvious problems involve the large number of diseases infesting the region in which our ancestors evolved, and the difficulties in establishing sophisticated farming without wildlife devouring the crops.

    Those arguments provide quite cogent explanations for how an IQ gap developed - not to mention the other cognitive differences outside of bare IQ that many of us suspect occur along racial lines. Executive function, toleration of boredom, time preference, and all.

    The Cape of South Africa has a very pleasant climate. I don’t see why a great civilization could not have arisen there.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Reg Cæsar

    The Cape of South Africa has a very pleasant climate. I don’t see why a great civilization could not have arisen there.
     
    On the other hand, Cleveland Amory's father had a point with "Nothing good ever came out of a warm climate." (Spoken while little Cleveland was standing, shivering, in freezing cold Boston beach water.)
    , @Logan
    Quite possibly, but here we're not talking about sub-Saharan blacks or what we used to call "the Negro race." These people hadn't reached the Cape when the Euros arrived. It was still inhabited only by Khoisan people, who are pretty clearly a different "race" from the Negros, probably as different as they are from Euros. The Khoisan were all either hunter-gatherers or pastoral, no agriculture.
    , @Logan
    Quite possibly, but here we're not talking about sub-Saharan blacks or what we used to call "the Negro race." These people hadn't reached the Cape when the Euros arrived. It was still inhabited only by Khoisan people, who are pretty clearly a different "race" from the Negros, probably as different as they are from Euros. The Khoisan were all either hunter-gatherers or pastoral, no agriculture.
  85. Given liberal hysteria on the question of racial IQ differences why not start ignoring liberals rather than continuing to placate them?

    Read More
    • Replies: @Frau Katze
    Because they dominate huge areas of our society: media, education, entertainment. These folks are very powerful. They will steamroll us, if we don't keep fighting back.
    , @Thea
    We need to challenge them. To force them go even more off the deep end in defense of their lies, thus exposing it for what it is.

    This article was overly long and full of bogus arguments to buttress a falling house, but for the true believers, it comes across as a lifeline. It confirms their "moral" superiority.

    They want to eradicate us, our culture and our future. They deserve no comfort in this task.
  86. Anonymous says:     Show CommentNext New Comment

    I think the more interesting question is, does IQ still matter so much in today’s globalist, feminized, visual-driven world? Obviously it matters if you’re below a certain threshold, but in middle class and upper middle class society, IQ seems to matter less and less every decade. The role of looks, charisma, extroversion and being “high energy” seems to get larger with every generation. In my limited observation, at least, these things seem inversely correlated with IQ

    Our Presidents are getting dumber based on their vocabulary tests. But they’re generally better looking and more charismatic than they used to be. High status today seems more likely to accrue to an actor, model or instagram star than a writer or artist. Managerial, academic and media positions are becoming increasingly feminine. The ones who get promoted are those with the best social skills, and just enough competence to get by. A nerd like Steve Wozniak could never climb a corporate ladder as fast as Ms Goodytwoshoes Carouselrider.

    In a fully developed society, with established bureaucracies and little innovation/growth, the rewards flow to the most socially savvy.

    Read More
  87. @timothy

    The black-white IQ gap is decreasing, and is now closer to 10 points than the widely cited one standard deviation (15 points), which is the erroneous value Murray cites in the interview. Academic achievement of blacks has also improved by about one-third standard deviation in recent decades.
     
    Is this true? Is the fundamental constant of American sociology not fundamentally constant?

    If you look at the Nisbett article linked at the bottom, on page 146 it notes that The Gap varies considerably with age. It’s 17 points at age 24, but it’s a more modest 5 points at age 4. Liberals of course view this as proof of racism, but there are a lot of issues there such as rates of maturation, test reliability at young ages, and the fact that a genetic differences don’t have to manifest at birth (strength difference in men and women, for example).

    Either the 10 points is at some younger age, or Nisbett is contradicting himself.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Sid
    g also becomes more heritable as you get older. In other words, you can give black kids early childhood education, and they will score higher on standardized tests than they would have otherwise. Twenty years later and the effect will have long since vanished.

    I personally doubt that the gap has narrowed in recent years. If, for example, black students had narrowed the game to 2/3rds of a standard deviation in 2014, we would've heard nearly endless praise for Obama.
  88. As I’ve pointed out before, for example, Harvard requires applicants to take the SAT or ACT, both which correlate considerably with IQ.

    Enough for Harvard, perhaps, but not for the higher standard held by Mensa:

    ACT Composite
    taken prior to 9/1989 29 (composite scores only)
    taken after 9/1989 Not accepted

    SAT
    taken prior to 9/30/1974 1300
    taken from 9/30/1974 to 1/31/1994 1250
    taken after 1/31/1994 Not accepted


    These tests no longer correlate with an IQ test. Note that the acceptance date applies to the date you took the test, not the date you join Mensa. You can still join Mensa by using older scores.

    They haven’t correlated in the lifetimes of today’s underclassmen.

    Read More
    • Replies: @anonymous
    Your not one a them Mensa douché bags are you? You talk like one.
  89. @eah
    You think Vox is bad -- this reads like parody, but I don't think it is:

    From the American Mathematical Society (AMS) 'inclusion/exclusion' blog -- Get Out The Way

    If you are a white cis man (meaning you identify as male and you were assigned male at birth) you almost certainly should resign from your position of power. That’s right, please quit.

    An excerpt from one of the comments:

    We need to decouple success in mathematics from IQ. IQ is a social construct that cishet white men devised that defines “intelligence” on the basis of culture. Sadly, there is a direct correlation between high IQ and “earning” a PhD in a STEM discipline, which is all too reflective of how white cishet men have designed disciplinary concepts to reinforce their own power structures...It is fundamentally unfair and marginalizing for IQ tests and mathematics curriculum to be designed around the same white supremacist, cisheteronormative standards, thus marginalizing women of color. What we need isn’t just “fair hiring;” we need a radical reconceptualization of mathematics in a decolonizing framework.

    Read the whole thing there.

    Poe’s Law certainly at work here, particularly in the third sentence. That sentence makes me think funny troll.

    Read More
    • Replies: @J.Ross
    Have you seen this?

    http://whatishappeninginsouthafrica.blogspot.com/2013/03/racist-tornados.html?m=1

    http://whatishappeninginsouthafrica.blogspot.com/2012/05/lightening-is-racism.html?m=1

    Originally seen at Mike Smith's place but I cannot find that link because of its defiant organization style. And a minister named Dube lends herself to accusations of dubiousness.
    , @eah
    funny troll

    You could be right -- but for similar stuff from peer reviewed academia follow these:

    New Real Peer Review

    Amir Sariaslan

    https://twitter.com/AmirSariaslan/status/865263138450657280
  90. As for rhetorical chops necessary to break the HBD news to the masses, I’d say Steven Pinker has been doing a pretty good job of it.

    Read More
  91. @Altai
    Do you think he'll ever look at Australia, New Zealand, Canada and Britain and wonder how those places could have any less in common in terms of geography but similar in terms of human development?

    If one sees the sand belt golf courses outside Melbourne one cannot argue that Australia lacks for great land. http://golfclubatlas.com/courses-by-country/australia/royalmelbourne1/

    Read More
  92. Where’s the “junk science” part?

    Don’t know about “junk science”, but the science of “junk” is here.

    Read More
  93. has found hundreds of genetic variants that each have a very, very tiny association with intelligence

    Except for the torsion dystonia gene, which raises IQ by an estimated 10 points.

    Cochran and Harpending think the other major Ashkenazi brain diseases raise IQ by about 5 points, but researchers are scared of running the data.

    http://evoandproud.blogspot.com/2011/02/five-years-later-still-no-study.html

    Read More
  94. Better rhetorics won’t help much as you can’t argue against interest, that interest being make-work schemes for corrupt pseudo-academics through never ending social engineering.

    Read More
  95. @John Chard
    Ackshually, Caplan is arguing that the primary difference between rich and poor countries is institutions, not geography ("magic dirt.") (And he's quite right.)

    Steve and iSteve commenters have a tendency to mock anyone who believes in anything other than 100% genetic determinism as believing in magic dirt. But the evidence is pretty clear that institutions have an effect over and above (real and important) genetic and cultural differences.

    Firstly, because it's always less time consuming to show that an argument proves too much than to show that it's wrong, consider that "magic dirt" proves too much: if true, there would be no reason for anyone to move from one country to another. Mexicans wouldn't gain any income from moving to America, Poles wouldn't gain any labor market income from moving to the UK, etc. because they would have the same allegedly definitive ancestry. I guess you can argue that people would move just to collect generous welfare benefits produced by higher achieving groups, but at least in America the Hispanic labor force participation rate is higher than that of any other ethnic group (I presume due to its lower median age.) It's a lot easier to make a living and raise a family by working a low wage job and collecting government benefits than just by collecting government benefits. And in the 19th century, large numbers of people immigrated to a pre-welfare state US. And institutions mattered a lot there--- southern Italians and eastern European Jews both did a lot better under well organized Anglo-Saxon capitalism than they'd done in their countries of origin.

    Secondly, because countries of people of the same ancestry who have different institutions imposed on them can have wildly different economic outcomes. The obvious and strongest examples being the post-WW2 divisions of Korea and Germany between capitalism and communism. Again, if ancestry is the only thing that matters, and anyone who believes otherwise is just a believer in magic dirt/tragic dirt, there should be no difference between North and South Korea.

    Thirdly, consider that African-Americans have much, much higher per capita income (~$23,000) than all Afro-Caribbean and Sub-Saharan African countries. The white admixture of 20% explains a bit of this, but probably not all that much. The difference between Euro-Americans and African-Americans in terms of income isn't due to institutions; but the difference between African-Americans and Haitians or Congolese obviously at least somewhat is.

    Finally, in terms of actual empirical evidence, look at Clemens', Pritchett's and Montenegro's 2009 paper on the "place premium". They demonstrate that for observably identical individual workers from less developed countries, there are massive income gains from moving to a first world country. MAGIC DIRT! MAGIC DIRT! MAGIC DIRT! (Just saying "magic dirt" is notanargument.jpg.)

    Read More
    • LOL: Abe
    • Replies: @John Chard
    JOKE: using logic and factual evidence to express disagreement with someone.

    WOKE: using [not-an-argument] to express disagreement with someone.

  96. @Seth Largo
    Poe's Law certainly at work here, particularly in the third sentence. That sentence makes me think funny troll.

    Have you seen this?

    http://whatishappeninginsouthafrica.blogspot.com/2013/03/racist-tornados.html?m=1

    http://whatishappeninginsouthafrica.blogspot.com/2012/05/lightening-is-racism.html?m=1

    Originally seen at Mike Smith’s place but I cannot find that link because of its defiant organization style. And a minister named Dube lends herself to accusations of dubiousness.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Yak-15
    I imagine if blacks were disproportionate victims of tornadoes they would protest about the institutional racism of wind.
  97. @Altaie
    His neocon credentials don't exactly strike a cord with the radical left.

    His neocon credentials don’t exactly strike a cord with the radical left.

    Chord! As in harmony. Not “cord” as in bondage and discipline.

    (Though I must admit the prospect of disciplining the left by striking them with cords holds a certain appeal…)

    Why do we keep seeing these homophonic errors in smart people’s writing today? Things like “tow the line” (lines tow), “didn’t phase me”, etc.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Altai
    Nobody ever taught me any stringed instruments...
    , @RonaldB
    Your hole post was to express the pun.
    , @Bill Jones
    I suspect it's the dumbing down effect (not affect) of low vocabulary autocorrect spellcheckers.
  98. So Michelle Obama comes from a prominent Chicago political family and verifiably attended Princeton and Harvard; Barrack Obama attended some obscure liberal arts college in CA for mediocre students from a prestigious Hawaiian private school, then wended his way to Columbia (though his attendance there remains an article of faith) and wound up at Harvard. In spite of all this, because Barrack had a white parent (which would not be obvious except for that biographical tidbit) and Michelle did not, Barrack must be more intelligent. Huh? OK. The author, of course, does not reveal how he determined this other than inferring it from Barrack’s and Michelle’s respective parental pairings. But if his conjecture indeed has legs, then the implied policy prescription for the IQ gap problem in this country is to encourage more propagation through “race mixing.” Gets my vote, though I’m sure some of Mr. Sailer’s fans will suffer major heartburn digesting that conclusion. I commend him on his forward thinking.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Steve Sailer
    Have you listened to Barack and Michelle talk?
    , @Desiderius

    verifiably attended Princeton and Harvard
     
    Your credentialism is showing.
    , @newrouter
    " because Barrack had a white parent (which would not be obvious except for that biographical tidbit) and Michelle did not, Barrack must be more intelligent. "

    baracky's dad via wiki:

    "Barack Hussein Obama Sr. (/ˈbærək huːˈseɪn oʊˈbɑːmə/;[11][12] 18 June 1936[2] – 24 November 1982) was a Kenyan senior governmental economist and the father of Barack Obama, the 44th President of the United States. He is a central figure of his son's memoir, Dreams from My Father (1995). Obama married in 1954 and had two children with his first wife, Kezia. He was selected for a special program to attend college in the United States, and studied at the University of Hawaii. There, Obama met Stanley Ann Dunham, whom he married in 1961, and with whom he had a son, Barack II. She divorced him three years later.[13] The elder Obama later went to Harvard University for graduate school, where he earned an M.A. in economics, and returned to Kenya in 1964."
    , @Alec Leamas
    You do understand that before 1997 SATs were accepted by MENSA as a form of IQ test (drop the last digit/round off)? And when Michelle took her SATs and applied to Princeton she was spotted literally hundreds of SAT points?
    , @Ed
    Michelle's family wasn't a prominently political in Chicago. Her dad was a post man or something.
    , @Johann Ricke

    In spite of all this, because Barrack had a white parent (which would not be obvious except for that biographical tidbit)
     
    From coloration alone, it's obvious that Obama has non-African ancestry. Whether it's white, native American or Asian is not as clear, but he would have gotten flak for it in a black majority public school, in the form of racist slurs. The children of this GI certainly did.
    , @Malcolm X-Lax
    Well, she's a lousy writer for one. She also failed the Illinois bar exam, which has and had a reputation as one of the easier one's to pass (they have since toughened it up).

    http://clashdaily.com/2017/04/exposed-heres-michelles-race-obsessed-thesis-princeton-written-unknown-language/

    Black chick whose dad was a blue collar type? If she could spell her name correctly on the application, the Ivy League schools would fight over her.

    Btw, I'm not a Michelle hater. In fact, I agreed with her efforts to make school lunches healthier.

    , @Jefferson
    "Barrack had a white parent (which would not be obvious except for that biographical tidbit)"

    Barack Hussein Obama does not look pure Black in phenotype.
    , @Unladen Swallow
    Christopher Hitchens joked that her thesis wasnt written in any known language, it was that poorly written. She failed at the time an easy bar exam, she let her law license expire soon after getting it. No editorships, no clerkships. Despite bein hired by an elite firm, she was working at the Mayors office a few years later, She was a legacy at Princeton, in addition to being an AA admit, because her older brother was the star of the basketball team
  99. @Robert Hume
    The Cape of South Africa has a very pleasant climate. I don't see why a great civilization could not have arisen there.

    The Cape of South Africa has a very pleasant climate. I don’t see why a great civilization could not have arisen there.

    On the other hand, Cleveland Amory’s father had a point with “Nothing good ever came out of a warm climate.” (Spoken while little Cleveland was standing, shivering, in freezing cold Boston beach water.)

    Read More
    • Replies: @Pericles
    Descartes was on the other hand invited by Queen Christina to Stockholm, where he quickly died in February from pneumonia. Wikipedia notes that "the winter seems to have been mild".
  100. @ltravail
    So Michelle Obama comes from a prominent Chicago political family and verifiably attended Princeton and Harvard; Barrack Obama attended some obscure liberal arts college in CA for mediocre students from a prestigious Hawaiian private school, then wended his way to Columbia (though his attendance there remains an article of faith) and wound up at Harvard. In spite of all this, because Barrack had a white parent (which would not be obvious except for that biographical tidbit) and Michelle did not, Barrack must be more intelligent. Huh? OK. The author, of course, does not reveal how he determined this other than inferring it from Barrack's and Michelle's respective parental pairings. But if his conjecture indeed has legs, then the implied policy prescription for the IQ gap problem in this country is to encourage more propagation through "race mixing." Gets my vote, though I'm sure some of Mr. Sailer's fans will suffer major heartburn digesting that conclusion. I commend him on his forward thinking.

    Have you listened to Barack and Michelle talk?

    Read More
    • Replies: @anon
    Michelle is very insecure about her intelligence. Also, I wonder how her kids feel. They must be under a lot of pressure to be smart. But what happens if a president's kids turn out to just be average? I guess there weren't enough books in the white house.
  101. @Charles Pewitt
    Obama would much rather munch ice cream on Martha's Vineyard than explain the genetic heritability of racial differences to White upper middle class globalizers.

    The Democrats can't concede the genetic foundation of the racial test score gap in schools because that might jeopardize the massive loot the education industry gets from the government to close the gap.

    I am waiting for the day when the left acknowledges innate racial differences in ability as a rationale for more redistribution to compensate. That could sort of end a lot of arguments and obviate the need for other flim-flam rationales they adopt — historical discrimination, benefits of diversity for its own sake, institutional racism, temporary redress, etc.

    Read More
    • Replies: @J.Ross
    Not strategic enough. The current explanation accomplishes many things and prepares more, notably setting up the basis of a grievance-cult. Flat out admitting inferiority doesn't get you anything but actual aid to the poor, which is the last thing they care about.
    I don't want to bring in the Old Testament but there's an enormous and vulnerable pattern involving Semitic tribalist grievance reasoning, which connects almost every leftoid program.
    (This is highly developed and documented among a certain religio-ethnic group, but I use the word "Semitic" deliberately because it is not unique to them. It is probably an inescapable result of tribalism and diversity. There are many "convenient grievances" in Islam, notably Palestine and Shi'ism.)
    Their story, for every case from blacks to mestizos to (at one time) blue collar workers to women, is always an adaptation of Exodus or Esther, and this both cuts off some options and sets up others. Once you learn the myths (which in this case means seeing the fallacies vindicated by tradition and why they are necessary) and start to look for the patterns, their words and actions have a visible logic and can be predicted. Or at least you can see what they won't do and why.
    They are not normal people in a political discussion looking for a policy solution. They are wronged superior beings, held back by a nefarious conspiracy, itself only made possible by their own failure to maintain traditions and respect their prophets.
    , @Logan
    That would make sense, but will never happen.

    Far more important to their worldview is the notion that the inferior position they find themselves in is someone else's fault. That it's "just the way it is" wouldn't be nearly as much fun.
  102. @epochehusserl
    I realize none of you Hard Scientists think very much of the study of history, but if you’d crack a popular history book about, oh, the Jim Crow era, you would learn one very good example of something that gets repeated throughout history — humans treat those they perceive as inferior like shit, and will use all the power of the government to enforce that shit-state.
    ----------------------------------------------
    The equalists treat working white class like shit. They selectively enforce anti-discrimination laws and overlook uncivilized behavior by activists because they believe they are doing god's work. During Jim Crow blacks were never prevented from forming blacks only organizations. If a private employer group of people want to use IQ tests then why make a federal case out of it? The activists don't believe in equality for a second - they believe in payback. My ancestors were Italian and Native American and Eastern European and had nothing to do with the slave trade or jim crow and I have to listen to the most disgusting rhetoric aimed at me. For things neither me nor my ancestors had anything to do with! And all because people such as yourself want to virtue signal themselves into secular heaven!

    “During Jim Crow blacks were never prevented from forming blacks only organizations.”

    Because the purpose of segregation was to have separate organizations! In 1902, W.E.B. Du Bois, found that 43 national unions had no black members, and 27 others barred black apprentices, kept membership to a minimum. Southern blacks were prohibited from creating their own groups out of fear of competing with southern whites.

    “My ancestors were Italian and Native American and Eastern European and had nothing to do with the slave trade or jim crow and I have to listen to the most disgusting rhetoric aimed at me.”

    Correct. You do realize they were subject to vile discriminatory practices by nativists, who believed your ancestors were “gutter whites” unworthy of assimilation into WASP society, who lacked the intellectual capacity to comprehend Anglo-Saxon ideals of law and politics. Somehow, they were “allowed” to remain here through their own virtue signaling efforts.

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    • Replies: @epochehusserl
    “My ancestors were Italian and Native American and Eastern European and had nothing to do with the slave trade or jim crow and I have to listen to the most disgusting rhetoric aimed at me.”

    Correct. You do realize they were subject to vile discriminatory practices by nativists, who believed your ancestors were “gutter whites” unworthy of assimilation into WASP society, who lacked the intellectual capacity to comprehend Anglo-Saxon ideals of law and politics. Somehow, they were “allowed” to remain here through their own virtue signaling efforts.
    ----------------------------------------------------------------
    The solution to these problems should be to allow private individuals to decide with whom to associate and for what purpose rather than relying on government mandates. Some groups are incapable of understanding Anglo-Saxon ideals of law and practice such as those to agree with Ginsburg's when is a quota not a quota legal reasoning. When the civil rights act of 1991 was passed the proponents wanted to overturn wards cove I believe because they stated that they didnt believe anyone should have the choice in whom to hire because giving anyone a choice would be against black interests. The phrase women and racial minorities comes from Gramsci's Prison notebook
  103. @eah
    You think Vox is bad -- this reads like parody, but I don't think it is:

    From the American Mathematical Society (AMS) 'inclusion/exclusion' blog -- Get Out The Way

    If you are a white cis man (meaning you identify as male and you were assigned male at birth) you almost certainly should resign from your position of power. That’s right, please quit.

    An excerpt from one of the comments:

    We need to decouple success in mathematics from IQ. IQ is a social construct that cishet white men devised that defines “intelligence” on the basis of culture. Sadly, there is a direct correlation between high IQ and “earning” a PhD in a STEM discipline, which is all too reflective of how white cishet men have designed disciplinary concepts to reinforce their own power structures...It is fundamentally unfair and marginalizing for IQ tests and mathematics curriculum to be designed around the same white supremacist, cisheteronormative standards, thus marginalizing women of color. What we need isn’t just “fair hiring;” we need a radical reconceptualization of mathematics in a decolonizing framework.

    Read the whole thing there.

    The fairly high percentage of supportive comments on this AMS article is very depressing. But perhaps this is because they are discarding a higher percentage of negative comments (my non-supportive, but non-offensive, comment didn’t get put through for example). Or maybe it attracts many anti-hetero-white-male lunatics. I hope it’s not a representative sample of the mathematical community.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Yak-15
    I am not sure for certain, but I imagine there is some sort of Drudge Report type effect here. I would venture to guess that some number of liberal outlets posted this as part of their narrative. This attracted the leftist posters.

    That, or, the poz is coursing through intellectual society in unimaginable ways and we are all doomed.
  104. Clearly, even Charles Murray doesn’t have the eloquence to reassure liberals.

    Steve, come on. Remember your Roissy.

    Do you really think that it is eloquence that Murray is lacking?

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  105. @ltravail
    So Michelle Obama comes from a prominent Chicago political family and verifiably attended Princeton and Harvard; Barrack Obama attended some obscure liberal arts college in CA for mediocre students from a prestigious Hawaiian private school, then wended his way to Columbia (though his attendance there remains an article of faith) and wound up at Harvard. In spite of all this, because Barrack had a white parent (which would not be obvious except for that biographical tidbit) and Michelle did not, Barrack must be more intelligent. Huh? OK. The author, of course, does not reveal how he determined this other than inferring it from Barrack's and Michelle's respective parental pairings. But if his conjecture indeed has legs, then the implied policy prescription for the IQ gap problem in this country is to encourage more propagation through "race mixing." Gets my vote, though I'm sure some of Mr. Sailer's fans will suffer major heartburn digesting that conclusion. I commend him on his forward thinking.

    verifiably attended Princeton and Harvard

    Your credentialism is showing.

    Read More
  106. anonymous says: • Website     Show CommentNext New Comment
    @Reg Cæsar

    As I’ve pointed out before, for example, Harvard requires applicants to take the SAT or ACT, both which correlate considerably with IQ.
     
    Enough for Harvard, perhaps, but not for the higher standard held by Mensa:

    ACT Composite
    taken prior to 9/1989 29 (composite scores only)
    taken after 9/1989 Not accepted

    SAT
    taken prior to 9/30/1974 1300
    taken from 9/30/1974 to 1/31/1994 1250
    taken after 1/31/1994 Not accepted


    These tests no longer correlate with an IQ test. Note that the acceptance date applies to the date you took the test, not the date you join Mensa. You can still join Mensa by using older scores.

     
    They haven't correlated in the lifetimes of today's underclassmen.

    Your not one a them Mensa douché bags are you? You talk like one.

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  107. @Thucydides
    The Vox piece is a masterpiece of elaborately rationalized denial of reality. A core value defining progressivism is the pious commitment to human universalism (the idea that all men are the same in all times and places) and egalitarianism. So you see an unbelievable amount of energy put into trying to cling to these values in the face of mounting evidence of human biodiversity.

    Steve is right that acknowledgment of this need not mean the end of the world. The fact that there are average group differences, whether biological or cultural, says nothing about any particular individual. There are highly intelligent (or stupid) people to be found in all races, just in varying proportional numbers.

    For progressives, however, acknowledgment of reality would be the end of their world, i.e., the end of the core belief in universalism/egalitarianism, adherence to which defines them in their own eyes as being morally superior people.

    For progressives, however, acknowledgment of reality would be the end of their world, i.e., the end of the core belief in universalism/egalitarianism, adherence to which defines them in their own eyes as being morally superior people.

    Also, this belief is necessary for progressives to justify their status and privilege. They can sleep soundly believing that they achieved their station in life due to hard work and good character. However, if they understand that their achievements are largely due to the luck of their inheritance, their egalitarian values come into conflict with their extravagant lifestyle. They are an aristocratic class without nobility. The cognitive dissonance is unbearable.

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  108. @Reg Cæsar

    His neocon credentials don’t exactly strike a cord with the radical left.
     
    Chord! As in harmony. Not "cord" as in bondage and discipline.

    (Though I must admit the prospect of disciplining the left by striking them with cords holds a certain appeal...)

    Why do we keep seeing these homophonic errors in smart people's writing today? Things like "tow the line" (lines tow), "didn't phase me", etc.

    Nobody ever taught me any stringed instruments…

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  109. @Kit
    I realize none of you Hard Scientists think very much of the study of history, but if you'd crack a popular history book about, oh, the Jim Crow era, you would learn one very good example of something that gets repeated throughout history -- humans treat those they perceive as inferior like shit, and will use all the power of the government to enforce that shit-state. If Murray is correct and people with significant sub-Saharan ancestry really do have less cognitive ability than those of European or Asian, the smarter groups will start imposing painful legal restrictions on the dumber groups. For one example, the death penalty cannot be imposed on someone with an IQ below 70. I have read Sailer suggesting, often, that a black person with an IQ of 70 isn't nearly as impaired as a white person at the same level. So, why not eliminate that restriction on the use of the death penalty when the defendant is black?

    If you read history, you would learn that humans pretty much suck, and suck far worse in groups than as individuals. That is why ideas like Murray's are so very appalling. He's writing the script for the reintroduction of Jim Crow laws. (Also "The Handmaid's Tale," as his views of women are, if anything, worse than his views of blacks. We're only good as breeders and floor-scrubbers and not one other thing. If you read the end of Atwood's novel, she describes a character based on Murray as one of the architects of Gilead. And yes, I believe Sailer and Murray would absolutely adore being Commanders of the Faithful, with Handmaids and powerless, miserable wives. It's their dearest wish to be in charge AND to make everyone else miserable.)

    “If Murray is correct and people with significant sub-Saharan ancestry really do have less cognitive ability than those of European or Asian, the smarter groups will start imposing painful legal restrictions on the dumber groups.”
    No they won’t. They’ll just stop expecting those groups to perform at the same level and forcing equal outcomes. The brightest would still succeed, society would simply stop forcing artificial equal outcomes above the abilities of the mediocre and the slow.

    “He’s writing the script for the reintroduction of Jim Crow laws.”
    No he’s not. Jim Crow was used for the purpose of restricting criminal behavior. Compare and contrast Selma Alabama, or any of a hundred other cities, in 1962 and today. Your statement

    “The Handmaid’s Tale,” as his views of women are, if anything, worse than his views of blacks. We’re only good as breeders and floor-scrubbers and not one other thing. If you read the end of Atwood’s novel, she describes a character based on Murray as one of the architects of Gilead. ”
    Read the book again. The society is indistinguishable from those run by Islamic fundamentalists like ISIS and the Taliban except without the violence, but Muslims tend to be browner than Europeans, so Atwood made them Christians in a fine display of Crimestop.

    You are projecting your own pathologies and misanthropy on other people.

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    • Replies: @J.Ross
    @Kit

    I might be totally wrong about this but I would bet money without looking it up that Margaret Atwood did not base any character in "The Handmaid's Tale" -- a very Early Eighties story reacting to Reagan, televangelism, nuclear waste, late feminist sex horror and other Early Eighties staples -- on Charles Murray, although it is vaguely possible because of his Vietnam War era work on counterinsurgency in Thailand. Vaguely possible. I haven't re-read it in years but certain parts are properly rooted in my memory and I do not recall anything that could possibly be Murray. I will check this now.
    , @Corvinus
    "No he’s not. Jim Crow was used for the purpose of restricting criminal behavior. Compare and contrast Selma Alabama, or any of a hundred other cities, in 1962 and today."

    Clearly you were asleep in your American history class. Jim Crow was used exclusively to separate blacks and whites in all facets of southern life, so long as the accommodations were equal. It was meant to strip blacks of the political rights and ensure their economic dormancy. The problem was that southrons could not help themselves--nearly every aspect of life there was separate and unequal.
  110. @EdwardM
    I am waiting for the day when the left acknowledges innate racial differences in ability as a rationale for more redistribution to compensate. That could sort of end a lot of arguments and obviate the need for other flim-flam rationales they adopt -- historical discrimination, benefits of diversity for its own sake, institutional racism, temporary redress, etc.

    Not strategic enough. The current explanation accomplishes many things and prepares more, notably setting up the basis of a grievance-cult. Flat out admitting inferiority doesn’t get you anything but actual aid to the poor, which is the last thing they care about.
    I don’t want to bring in the Old Testament but there’s an enormous and vulnerable pattern involving Semitic tribalist grievance reasoning, which connects almost every leftoid program.
    (This is highly developed and documented among a certain religio-ethnic group, but I use the word “Semitic” deliberately because it is not unique to them. It is probably an inescapable result of tribalism and diversity. There are many “convenient grievances” in Islam, notably Palestine and Shi’ism.)
    Their story, for every case from blacks to mestizos to (at one time) blue collar workers to women, is always an adaptation of Exodus or Esther, and this both cuts off some options and sets up others. Once you learn the myths (which in this case means seeing the fallacies vindicated by tradition and why they are necessary) and start to look for the patterns, their words and actions have a visible logic and can be predicted. Or at least you can see what they won’t do and why.
    They are not normal people in a political discussion looking for a policy solution. They are wronged superior beings, held back by a nefarious conspiracy, itself only made possible by their own failure to maintain traditions and respect their prophets.

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  111. @Alfa158
    "If Murray is correct and people with significant sub-Saharan ancestry really do have less cognitive ability than those of European or Asian, the smarter groups will start imposing painful legal restrictions on the dumber groups."
    No they won't. They'll just stop expecting those groups to perform at the same level and forcing equal outcomes. The brightest would still succeed, society would simply stop forcing artificial equal outcomes above the abilities of the mediocre and the slow.

    "He’s writing the script for the reintroduction of Jim Crow laws."
    No he's not. Jim Crow was used for the purpose of restricting criminal behavior. Compare and contrast Selma Alabama, or any of a hundred other cities, in 1962 and today. Your statement

    "The Handmaid’s Tale,” as his views of women are, if anything, worse than his views of blacks. We’re only good as breeders and floor-scrubbers and not one other thing. If you read the end of Atwood’s novel, she describes a character based on Murray as one of the architects of Gilead. "
    Read the book again. The society is indistinguishable from those run by Islamic fundamentalists like ISIS and the Taliban except without the violence, but Muslims tend to be browner than Europeans, so Atwood made them Christians in a fine display of Crimestop.

    You are projecting your own pathologies and misanthropy on other people.

    I might be totally wrong about this but I would bet money without looking it up that Margaret Atwood did not base any character in “The Handmaid’s Tale” — a very Early Eighties story reacting to Reagan, televangelism, nuclear waste, late feminist sex horror and other Early Eighties staples — on Charles Murray, although it is vaguely possible because of his Vietnam War era work on counterinsurgency in Thailand. Vaguely possible. I haven’t re-read it in years but certain parts are properly rooted in my memory and I do not recall anything that could possibly be Murray. I will check this now.

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    • Replies: @J.Ross
    Follow-up: THT published 1985, Bell Curve published 1994.
    I am not able to find anything about Charles Murray inspiring any character in Handmaid. I'm not even sure how that would work. Like I said, it was about being mad at televangelists, not "racist pseudoscienists." Gilead was thoroughly anti-science and had expressly medieval imagery, like the hanging of parts of executed criminals, high on city walls.
    Barring a musing reconsideration by Atwood in a subsequent and much later interview, I think this is a great illustration of the sloppy herd-think lefties have in place of our humbly tended memes. It's like a target being a "Nazi" because he might as well be one or because he would be one if he was born at the right time and place.
  112. American intellectuals seldom think in terms of family trees, even though biological genealogy is just about the most absolutely real thing there is in the social realm. The simple reality is that people of one race tend to be more closely related in their family trees to people of the same race than they are to people of other races.

    In doing my genealogy, and helping others with theirs, it quickly becomes apparent that members of a nationality will have a common ancestor in the not too distant past. For example, the first Americans who came to this country in the 1600′s numbered in the thousands, not millions. That is why you hear about the fact that most of the presidents and other Wasp heavy groups, such as early captains of industry, were all related to one another. Franklin Roosevelt was a distant relative to something like 22 other presidents and Obama is a distant relative to Dick Chaney. Until about the 1600′s or so, much of the world was populated as sparsely as Colonial America. Also, the most successful people had the most offspring. You will always hear some people on genealogy sites brag about being descended from William the Conqueror or Charlemagne but so are most people of European descent. https://www.theguardian.com/science/commentisfree/2015/may/24/business-genetic-ancestry-charlemagne-adam-rutherford

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    • Replies: @Expletive Deleted
    Most people, and the men in particular, who form the current native population of the British Isles (including the Left Island), are descended from a single branch or clan of a spectacularly successful tribe based somewhere along the Rhine which spread out to encompass almost the whole of Western Europe.
    They arrived on the island, from Hook of Holland or the like, sometime in the middle of the 3rd millennium BC.

    the spread of the Beaker Complex to Britain was mediated by migration from the continent that replaced >90% of Britain's Neolithic gene pool within a few hundred years
     
    http://biorxiv.org/content/early/2017/05/09/135962 That's the entire gene pool, not just chaps.

    The blokes are all as far as can be determined R1b-L21, and the most well-preserved samples are a sub-branch of that, DF13, including the most prominent burials (metalworking archers, under 'kurgans'/barrows). Still comprises the vast majority of Isles yDNA, particularly in the "celtic" holdout areas, something like 90% in Ireland, from memory.
    They brought quite a lot of their women and kids. And took some of the local farming folk's women as well. Their men basically "disappeared" in a few generations ... somehow or other. Tut, tut ...

    Later incursions of their kinsmen, peaceful or not (these were all likely "proto-Celts", so what are the chances, eh?) were now well-armed (and armoured) caballeros, starting with Unetice-type culture, and serving only to reinforce the L21 steamroller.
    The "Genghis Khan effect", before Genghis.
  113. Anonymous says:     Show CommentNext New Comment

    Its telling that neither the article’s authors nor its few defenders here (because “Vox” humorously does not allow comments) are able to make a rational argument in good faith.

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  114. @gregor
    If you look at the Nisbett article linked at the bottom, on page 146 it notes that The Gap varies considerably with age. It's 17 points at age 24, but it's a more modest 5 points at age 4. Liberals of course view this as proof of racism, but there are a lot of issues there such as rates of maturation, test reliability at young ages, and the fact that a genetic differences don't have to manifest at birth (strength difference in men and women, for example).

    Either the 10 points is at some younger age, or Nisbett is contradicting himself.

    g also becomes more heritable as you get older. In other words, you can give black kids early childhood education, and they will score higher on standardized tests than they would have otherwise. Twenty years later and the effect will have long since vanished.

    I personally doubt that the gap has narrowed in recent years. If, for example, black students had narrowed the game to 2/3rds of a standard deviation in 2014, we would’ve heard nearly endless praise for Obama.

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  115. @Corvinus
    "During Jim Crow blacks were never prevented from forming blacks only organizations."

    Because the purpose of segregation was to have separate organizations! In 1902, W.E.B. Du Bois, found that 43 national unions had no black members, and 27 others barred black apprentices, kept membership to a minimum. Southern blacks were prohibited from creating their own groups out of fear of competing with southern whites.

    "My ancestors were Italian and Native American and Eastern European and had nothing to do with the slave trade or jim crow and I have to listen to the most disgusting rhetoric aimed at me."

    Correct. You do realize they were subject to vile discriminatory practices by nativists, who believed your ancestors were "gutter whites" unworthy of assimilation into WASP society, who lacked the intellectual capacity to comprehend Anglo-Saxon ideals of law and politics. Somehow, they were "allowed" to remain here through their own virtue signaling efforts.

    “My ancestors were Italian and Native American and Eastern European and had nothing to do with the slave trade or jim crow and I have to listen to the most disgusting rhetoric aimed at me.”

    Correct. You do realize they were subject to vile discriminatory practices by nativists, who believed your ancestors were “gutter whites” unworthy of assimilation into WASP society, who lacked the intellectual capacity to comprehend Anglo-Saxon ideals of law and politics. Somehow, they were “allowed” to remain here through their own virtue signaling efforts.
    —————————————————————-
    The solution to these problems should be to allow private individuals to decide with whom to associate and for what purpose rather than relying on government mandates. Some groups are incapable of understanding Anglo-Saxon ideals of law and practice such as those to agree with Ginsburg’s when is a quota not a quota legal reasoning. When the civil rights act of 1991 was passed the proponents wanted to overturn wards cove I believe because they stated that they didnt believe anyone should have the choice in whom to hire because giving anyone a choice would be against black interests. The phrase women and racial minorities comes from Gramsci’s Prison notebook

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    • Agree: Daniel Chieh
    • Replies: @Corvinus
    "The solution to these problems should be to allow private individuals to decide with whom to associate and for what purpose rather than relying on government mandates."

    Private individuals decide even today who they are friends with and who they live near by. Private individuals, as members of the general public, also decided that past conduct, most notably by Southrons during the Jim Crow Era, was illegal and unconstitutional. That is how a representative government works. Freedom of association is NOT unfettered nor is it free. In our society, there are stipulations.

    "Some groups are incapable of understanding Anglo-Saxon ideals of law and practice such as those to agree with Ginsburg’s when is a quota not a quota legal reasoning."

    One of the leaders of the Alt Right, Vox Day, argues that the "second wave of immigrants"--in particular YOUR ancestors--were ill-equipped to comprehend those "Angl0-Saxon standards". In essence, you are supporting HIS argument. Therefore, as Vox Day says, you have to go back.

    "When the civil rights act of 1991 was passed the proponents wanted to overturn wards cove I believe because they stated that they didnt believe anyone should have the choice in whom to hire because giving anyone a choice would be against black interests.

    "The phrase women and racial minorities comes from Gramsci’s Prison notebook"

    Woman originates from the late Old English wimman, wiman (plural wimmen), literally "woman-man," alteration of wifman (plural wifmen) "woman, female servant". The origin of the term "minorities” is traced to Europe. It was applied to various national groups who were identified with particular territories, but had lost their sovereignty there to another national group.
  116. @Robert Hume
    I wonder if sexual selection does not explain the rise in average height of the Japanese.

    A technical question: if there is more mixing of a population so that women can preferentially select the tallest men so that the taller men have more children than the shorter men; what is the effect on the mean and standard error of the distribution? I would imagine that the mean would increase; and probably also the standard error.

    Also, with increasing mixing of the population; enabling the higher IQ men to go to college where the higher IQ women can find them; and leaving the lower IQ men and women "in the country" we might get a Flynn effect. But it's a bit uncertain because the lower portion of the college-bound men might have fewer than the average number of children; and vice versa for those left behind. A detailed quantitative analysis would be needed.

    The post WW2 rise in height in Japan is due to a change from a rice and vegetable diet to a diet higher in protein and calories.

    Until about 30 years ago a lot of Japanese marriages were arranged by mothers grandmothers and aunts, not by sexual selection.

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    • Replies: @Robert Hume
    I'm aware that that is the generally accepted explanation. However, the improvement in diet occurred at the same time as the movement of populations, so it seems plausible to me that sexual selection in a situation of greater available choice might have the same result.

    But you do bring up an important issue; how can we distinguish between the two explanations?

    One approach might be to find an isolated population, perhaps a religious minority, which remained in a single location and for which there was no marriage outside the population. If it could be shown that their diet I had improved just as had that of the rest of the population; and that the sexual selection possibilities were also much the same; but that their height had not increased or decreased, that would favor the sexual selection hypothesis. And vice versa.
  117. @guest
    It's the Gas Chamber Principle of ethics. If you admit the genetic basis of racial differences beyond a certain point--and no one knows where that point is, exactly--you *must* try to exterminate other races. Ipso facto.

    To add to the matter, the exact point changes from year to year. Saying that blacks have curlier hair than Chinese people would have been considered blandly true 10 years ago, but it is not something you want to say around SJWs. They might go on and on about bodies that have been identified as black, and talk about social factors having a role to play in whether hair is curly or not having a role to play (what if black people straighten their hair to look more white?). Then they will go into how white people in 1842 identified black people as having curly hair and strongly imply you’re a terrible racist for noticing that too.

    It sounds stupid when you lay it out like this, and it is stupid, but SJWs have made arguments like this time and again.

    The big difference between hereditarians and blank slaters on race is that hereditarian arguments make immediate sense and generally line up with what you’ve seen in your daily life, whereas blank slaters are obscurantists who play word games while implying you’re evil, stupid, or both if you disagree or can’t follow what they’re saying. The article presented here doesn’t have any arguments in favor of egalitarianism which make you say, “Wow, that makes sense!”

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  118. I am not especially young, but I am hardly ancient, yet I remember within my own life a time when to become (and remain) a professor meant being incredibly brilliant in a discipline and focusing upon its most challenging and erudite aspects. Mathematicians labored to prove rules and derive formulae. Physicians strove to understand diseases and perfect new surgerical techniques. Historians pored over obscure documents in musty archives hoping to uncover heretofore forgotten explanations for how the past unfolded as it did, and why. Archaelogists and philologists struggled to decipher strange artifacts and translate forgotten languages. These men had neither the time nor any inclination to bloviate about popular culture or write vapid pieces for newspapers and glossy magazines. Their works and discoveries were circulated in books and academic fora for others with the ability and initiative to understand and appreciate their great expertise. Today’s professiorate are no better than prostitutes, seeking notoriery, however fleeting and insignificant, for having appeared in a popular television programme or opining in a listicle. Even their vitae now highlight such dubious achievements as being a regular contributor or commentator on this or that talking-head circuit, where they purport to dispense deep wisdom on a topic in thirty-second sound-bytes – as if it were even possible!

    Can anyone imagine Max Planck wasting his time hosting corny documentaries in the style of that fool Neil Tyson? Or J.R.R. Tolkien teaching graduate seminars in Klingon (or even Sindarin? – he had the humility to distinguish even his own masterworks from the study of weighty things that already had withstood the test of time, like Beowulf…).

    The whole thing is so much confirmation universities increasingly serve less and less purpose at all. Let the scientists at St. Jude advance oncology, and the engineers at Boeing study physics, I begin to say….

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  119. @J.Ross
    @Kit

    I might be totally wrong about this but I would bet money without looking it up that Margaret Atwood did not base any character in "The Handmaid's Tale" -- a very Early Eighties story reacting to Reagan, televangelism, nuclear waste, late feminist sex horror and other Early Eighties staples -- on Charles Murray, although it is vaguely possible because of his Vietnam War era work on counterinsurgency in Thailand. Vaguely possible. I haven't re-read it in years but certain parts are properly rooted in my memory and I do not recall anything that could possibly be Murray. I will check this now.

    Follow-up: THT published 1985, Bell Curve published 1994.
    I am not able to find anything about Charles Murray inspiring any character in Handmaid. I’m not even sure how that would work. Like I said, it was about being mad at televangelists, not “racist pseudoscienists.” Gilead was thoroughly anti-science and had expressly medieval imagery, like the hanging of parts of executed criminals, high on city walls.
    Barring a musing reconsideration by Atwood in a subsequent and much later interview, I think this is a great illustration of the sloppy herd-think lefties have in place of our humbly tended memes. It’s like a target being a “Nazi” because he might as well be one or because he would be one if he was born at the right time and place.

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    • Replies: @Hippopotamusdrome


    Gilead ... had expressly medieval imagery, like the hanging of parts of executed criminals, high on city walls

     

    So it's kind of a utopian novel?
  120. @Dave Pinsen
    Murray gets no credit for this?
    https://twitter.com/mksheikh/status/744909255338262528

    Not quite sure why a Muslim is applauding this. Murray is simply admitting he is a typical upper-middle class libertarian male who likes Asians but doesn’t like blacks or rough working class whites. He doesn’t mention Muslims.

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  121. Kit,
    ” The Handmaid’s Tale” is a work of fiction, specifically sci fi fantasy. The basic premise of the book is ridiculous. In any society with a dangerously low birth rate and vast numbers of infertile women, the infertile ones would be cast aside and the fertile ones married into the aristocrats.

    The aristocrats would want fertile daughters to produce grandsons.

    That book is ridiculous and was only published because of the feminazis propaganda program.

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  122. anon says:     Show CommentNext New Comment
    @Steve Sailer
    Have you listened to Barack and Michelle talk?

    Michelle is very insecure about her intelligence. Also, I wonder how her kids feel. They must be under a lot of pressure to be smart. But what happens if a president’s kids turn out to just be average? I guess there weren’t enough books in the white house.

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    • Replies: @Alec Leamas

    But what happens if a president’s kids turn out to just be average?
     
    I suppose we'll find out when someone pays a $15,000,000.00 advance for Chelsea Mezvinsky: My Life and Times.
    , @Jim Don Bob

    Michelle is very insecure about her intelligence.
     
    She is right to be insecure.
  123. @Kit
    I realize none of you Hard Scientists think very much of the study of history, but if you'd crack a popular history book about, oh, the Jim Crow era, you would learn one very good example of something that gets repeated throughout history -- humans treat those they perceive as inferior like shit, and will use all the power of the government to enforce that shit-state. If Murray is correct and people with significant sub-Saharan ancestry really do have less cognitive ability than those of European or Asian, the smarter groups will start imposing painful legal restrictions on the dumber groups. For one example, the death penalty cannot be imposed on someone with an IQ below 70. I have read Sailer suggesting, often, that a black person with an IQ of 70 isn't nearly as impaired as a white person at the same level. So, why not eliminate that restriction on the use of the death penalty when the defendant is black?

    If you read history, you would learn that humans pretty much suck, and suck far worse in groups than as individuals. That is why ideas like Murray's are so very appalling. He's writing the script for the reintroduction of Jim Crow laws. (Also "The Handmaid's Tale," as his views of women are, if anything, worse than his views of blacks. We're only good as breeders and floor-scrubbers and not one other thing. If you read the end of Atwood's novel, she describes a character based on Murray as one of the architects of Gilead. And yes, I believe Sailer and Murray would absolutely adore being Commanders of the Faithful, with Handmaids and powerless, miserable wives. It's their dearest wish to be in charge AND to make everyone else miserable.)

    It’s vanishingly unlikely that Atwood knew who Murray was in 1985, when she wrote the book

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  124. @Jack D

    There is currently no reason at all to think that any significant portion of the IQ differences among socially defined racial groups is genetic in origin.
     
    Aside from being obviously false, staking out a position like this is a big mistake because once there is "some reason" then your whole argument collapses - you have to pray that your current luck holds out and that politics can hold back the progress of science so that no one can ever prove you wrong. This is not a safe bet. Even if you can block this kind of work from being done in the US, you can bet that the Chinese are working on it.

    You are forgetting Liberal Privilege.

    When you are an aristocrat, no one calls you to account for being wrong. Indeed, Marxism proves that with your Liberal Privilege, you are free to be not only wrong, but as wrong as possible, and still be unimpeded by your vile, profane and malicious stupidity.

    If Typhoid Mary were a modern Liberal, she’d be feted as a saintly humanitarian.

    There is no downside for these servants of Sauron being wrong.

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  125. @Buck Turgidson
    If memory serves, Murray lives in a 99% white/white bread community in Maryland just outside the Beltway. So he would rather live in a place like McAllen TX or a Somali 'hood in the Twin Cities vs all-white 'white bread' Newport Beach CA? First of all, that's a lie and secondly, not many people would go for McAllen over NB.

    By “Many whitebread communities”. he means Fishtown and the like.

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    • Replies: @Alec Leamas

    By “Many whitebread communities”. he means Fishtown and the like.
     
    If that's the case, he's never been in or near Fishtown.
  126. Turkheimer has gotten a lot of attention for a 2003 paper arguing that in one sample of poor people with lowish IQs, the heritability of IQ was lower than in better off populations, which is interesting but not hugely galvanizing.

    It’s obvious. The threshold at which nurture or environment can influence IQ is much lower than the living standards of people who are more well-off.

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  127. Turkheimer is on record advocating for an intellectual goon squad that will around disputing valid science that supports hbd. This seems like the squad in action.

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  128. @Alden
    The post WW2 rise in height in Japan is due to a change from a rice and vegetable diet to a diet higher in protein and calories.

    Until about 30 years ago a lot of Japanese marriages were arranged by mothers grandmothers and aunts, not by sexual selection.

    I’m aware that that is the generally accepted explanation. However, the improvement in diet occurred at the same time as the movement of populations, so it seems plausible to me that sexual selection in a situation of greater available choice might have the same result.

    But you do bring up an important issue; how can we distinguish between the two explanations?

    One approach might be to find an isolated population, perhaps a religious minority, which remained in a single location and for which there was no marriage outside the population. If it could be shown that their diet I had improved just as had that of the rest of the population; and that the sexual selection possibilities were also much the same; but that their height had not increased or decreased, that would favor the sexual selection hypothesis. And vice versa.

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  129. @Dave Pinsen
    Murray gets no credit for this?
    https://twitter.com/mksheikh/status/744909255338262528

    Stuff like this is why I wish the crowd had got its hands on Murray, whose last words could have been “At least I wasn’t racist!”

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  130. Heritability is not unique to IQ; in fact, virtually all differences among individual human beings are somewhat heritable.

    Who has ever argued that IQ is the only heritable trait?

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    • Replies: @guest
    It's imported to appear as if you're conceding ground so as to look magnanimous and reasonable.
  131. Since genes and race don’t matter, I’m sure the authors wouldn’t notice any difference if their kids got swapped out as babies and replaced by some random black kids from the ghetto. Maybe an actual proposal like that would bring them the clarity of thought that comes with having some actual skin in the game. On second thought, my guess is that at least two of the three don’t have kids at all.

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  132. @ltravail
    So Michelle Obama comes from a prominent Chicago political family and verifiably attended Princeton and Harvard; Barrack Obama attended some obscure liberal arts college in CA for mediocre students from a prestigious Hawaiian private school, then wended his way to Columbia (though his attendance there remains an article of faith) and wound up at Harvard. In spite of all this, because Barrack had a white parent (which would not be obvious except for that biographical tidbit) and Michelle did not, Barrack must be more intelligent. Huh? OK. The author, of course, does not reveal how he determined this other than inferring it from Barrack's and Michelle's respective parental pairings. But if his conjecture indeed has legs, then the implied policy prescription for the IQ gap problem in this country is to encourage more propagation through "race mixing." Gets my vote, though I'm sure some of Mr. Sailer's fans will suffer major heartburn digesting that conclusion. I commend him on his forward thinking.

    ” because Barrack had a white parent (which would not be obvious except for that biographical tidbit) and Michelle did not, Barrack must be more intelligent. ”

    baracky’s dad via wiki:

    “Barack Hussein Obama Sr. (/ˈbærək huːˈseɪn oʊˈbɑːmə/;[11][12] 18 June 1936[2] – 24 November 1982) was a Kenyan senior governmental economist and the father of Barack Obama, the 44th President of the United States. He is a central figure of his son’s memoir, Dreams from My Father (1995). Obama married in 1954 and had two children with his first wife, Kezia. He was selected for a special program to attend college in the United States, and studied at the University of Hawaii. There, Obama met Stanley Ann Dunham, whom he married in 1961, and with whom he had a son, Barack II. She divorced him three years later.[13] The elder Obama later went to Harvard University for graduate school, where he earned an M.A. in economics, and returned to Kenya in 1964.”

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  133. Anonymous says:     Show CommentNext New Comment
    @Dave Pinsen
    Murray gets no credit for this?
    https://twitter.com/mksheikh/status/744909255338262528

    I can relate. I might also prefer a Little Vietnam or a Little Guatemala … or Little China or Little Mexico … just not Vietnam or Guatemala or China or Mexico.

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  134. @eah
    You think Vox is bad -- this reads like parody, but I don't think it is:

    From the American Mathematical Society (AMS) 'inclusion/exclusion' blog -- Get Out The Way

    If you are a white cis man (meaning you identify as male and you were assigned male at birth) you almost certainly should resign from your position of power. That’s right, please quit.

    An excerpt from one of the comments:

    We need to decouple success in mathematics from IQ. IQ is a social construct that cishet white men devised that defines “intelligence” on the basis of culture. Sadly, there is a direct correlation between high IQ and “earning” a PhD in a STEM discipline, which is all too reflective of how white cishet men have designed disciplinary concepts to reinforce their own power structures...It is fundamentally unfair and marginalizing for IQ tests and mathematics curriculum to be designed around the same white supremacist, cisheteronormative standards, thus marginalizing women of color. What we need isn’t just “fair hiring;” we need a radical reconceptualization of mathematics in a decolonizing framework.

    Read the whole thing there.

    But the bridge will fall down.

    I’ll believe them when they have surgery performed by the affirmative action recipient instead of the white doctor.

    To see this in math demonstrates that cancer in the body politic cannot be ignored. Next up: 2+2 = 5.

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    • Replies: @Dave Pinsen
    Credit where credit is due, Kanye West's mother Donda had her surgery performed by Dr. Jan Adams.
  135. @Jenner Ickham Errican

    JOKE: using logic and factual evidence to express disagreement with someone.

    WOKE: using [not-an-argument] to express disagreement with someone.

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  136. @ltravail
    So Michelle Obama comes from a prominent Chicago political family and verifiably attended Princeton and Harvard; Barrack Obama attended some obscure liberal arts college in CA for mediocre students from a prestigious Hawaiian private school, then wended his way to Columbia (though his attendance there remains an article of faith) and wound up at Harvard. In spite of all this, because Barrack had a white parent (which would not be obvious except for that biographical tidbit) and Michelle did not, Barrack must be more intelligent. Huh? OK. The author, of course, does not reveal how he determined this other than inferring it from Barrack's and Michelle's respective parental pairings. But if his conjecture indeed has legs, then the implied policy prescription for the IQ gap problem in this country is to encourage more propagation through "race mixing." Gets my vote, though I'm sure some of Mr. Sailer's fans will suffer major heartburn digesting that conclusion. I commend him on his forward thinking.

    You do understand that before 1997 SATs were accepted by MENSA as a form of IQ test (drop the last digit/round off)? And when Michelle took her SATs and applied to Princeton she was spotted literally hundreds of SAT points?

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  137. @Barnard

    There is currently no reason at all to think that any significant portion of the IQ differences among socially defined racial groups is genetic in origin.
     
    Has anyone who claims to believe this ever tried to explain the lack of technological development in sub-Saharan Africa prior to contact with outside groups?

    But that raises the question: Who does have the rhetorical skills to undermine the increasingly hysterical conventional wisdom and package the mature point of view about genetic diversity in the old soft soap that will go over well with Nice People?
     
    Even if Obama understood, they would turn on him in a second if he tried to push it publicly. This has become a religious belief for the left, particularly among those in the designated victim classes. Every aspect of life is emotionally based for them, no one is going to win them over by making arguments to reason.

    SSAs did not create written languages or mathematical systems. A liberal former coworker once mentioned dolphins are brilliant and could have built civilization if they could write underwater. I asked him why blacks never created a writing system and if they, in his opinion, were no less intelligent than Asians or whites.

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  138. @anon
    Michelle is very insecure about her intelligence. Also, I wonder how her kids feel. They must be under a lot of pressure to be smart. But what happens if a president's kids turn out to just be average? I guess there weren't enough books in the white house.

    But what happens if a president’s kids turn out to just be average?

    I suppose we’ll find out when someone pays a $15,000,000.00 advance for Chelsea Mezvinsky: My Life and Times.

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  139. @PoorGradStudent
    This was clearly a high effort piece by Turkheimer and Nesbitt. I wouldn't expect anyone to throughly debunk something with this level of sneaky rhetorical sophistication 5 hours after publication. I certainly couldn't begin to, particularly since I am not an expert. Little things jump out at me that bely bias and hostility on the part of the authors though:

    "Until you get to 5, none of the premises is completely incorrect.". This would be more accurately and neutrally stated as "Until you get to 4, all of the premises are unambiguously true and non-controversial".

    "These observations do not undermine the conclusion that intelligence is heritable, but rather the naive assumption that heritable traits cannot be changed via environmental mechanisms. (Murray flatly tells Harris that this is the case.)"

    I haven't listened to the podcast, and Turkheimer doesn't cite the point in the podcast when Murray "flatly tells Harris that this is the case". I suspect that Charles Murray understands that the heritability of intelligence, height, etc would be much lower in populations exposed to extreme deprivation, such as wartime famine conditions. Murray has discussed the Wilson effect before - that the heritability of IQ increases with age, and early childhood interventions can increase the IQ of young children. Murray is likely referring to the failure of intensive childhood interventions to produce results approaching middle class white norms among lower and middle class African American groups.

    "There is currently no reason at all to think that any significant portion of the IQ differences among socially defined racial groups is genetic in origin."

    There is very good reason. We have controlled for the most obvious factor associated with environmental deprivation: poverty. In the 2003 College Bound cohort of SAT test-takers, black students with family incomes between 80k-100k averaged 461 on the SAT-M and 468 on the SAT-V. White test takers with family incomes between 15-20k averaged 485 on the SAT-M and 488 on the SAT-V. By our colloquial understanding of what constitutes deprivation, the black students in a comfortably middle class income bracket are "better off", yet still score worse than poor whites.

    The biggest problem is not that interventions work – they do. But as research has shown, the improvement is not enough to surmount the social-economic equivalent white/black gap. The other, more important problem is the incredible cost associated with these small improvements.

    Devoting enormous amounts of resources to marginally improving IQ may not produce positive returns. As western societies become more “diverse,” there will be far too many dumbs to educate. A more cost effective measure of improving life outcomes is necessary.

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  140. @eric
    I always found it funny that Gould's Mismeasure of Man exposition of factor analysis made absolutely no sense, and no one called him out on it. That is, you can change factor loadings across factors while not affecting the 'best fit', or g in the case of IQ, but that just highlights the usefulness of g over the individual factors, and these loading changes are then offset by changes in the variance of the factors. His graphical critique shows he doesn't understand that 2-dimensional plots of data always have at least one axis consistent between the two, as otherwise it makes no sense. The argument just disappeared, forgotten. Meanwhile, Gould gloms onto instances of other's biased arguments or measurements as if it implies the hypothesis--eg, brain size and IQ--then and forever shows a particular null hypothesis (viz, no group differences).

    If factor analysis, or principal components, was arbitrary as Gould stated, no one would bother learning it, but it remains part of the statistical canon.

    I did not read Gould’s Mismeasure of Man, so I do not know what points he made. But I can give my opinion about g. I suspect Gould would have agreed with me.

    g is mathematically trivial

    Any nonnegative symmetric matrix can be decomposed into principal components by some method. Different methods yield different results. One of this component will have larger loadings than any other component on average. Arriving at g from the covariance matrix which from its definition is nonnegative and symmetric is a mathematical necessity. Just like N different fractions have a lowest common denominator so N mutually correlated variables (test results) will produce g (by some method) that has “advertised” properties. For example you can take 60 question Raven matrix test and haphazardly divide into four 15 question subtests. You will obtain 4×4 covariance matrix that you can decompose and obtain g that most likely, if you have sufficient large sample of tested participants, will have similar loadings for each subtest. Would such a g have some meaning and tell you anything about some hidden intelligence factor that you have just revealed? No, it would not. Jut like finding that a common denominator of 1/2, 1/7 and 1/8 is 56. What is the meaning of 56?

    g interpretation can be arbitrary

    Mathematically g for each method with which it can be derived has (or at least should have) strict mathematical definition. All other features and qualities attributed to g outside of its mathematical definition are arbitrary and are detached from g’s definition; they can’t be proven or disproven by one’s ability to derive it mathematically. This mathematical g serves as pretext to utter statements about these features and qualities that are actually unprovable and have nothing to do with the inevitable existence of the mathematical g. Very often, frequently observed on unz.com pages, the concept of g and its mathematical existence is invoked as a purely rhetorical device to nobilitate the shoddy nature and lack of theoretical foundations of the IQ research. This argument works on mathematically unsavvy.

    g non-uniqueness

    g can be derived by different methods. Each method produces different g. The covariance matrix can be decomposed by means of eigenvectors which are orthogonal. Then g is associated with the eigenvector with greatest eigenvalue. This decomposition is unique and it is obtained with the principal component analysis (PCA). However one can combine the eigenvectors (by rotating them) and obtain a new set of also orthogonal vectors that are no longer eigenvectors. The orthogonality is a very important criterion for decomposition because it implies statistical independence among factors but by itself this orthogonality criterion does not guarantee the uniqueness of g. By doing so a new g can be defined that has a different distribution of loadings. Loading can be redistributed pretty much anyway one wants because the rotations can be arbitrary. When Spearman began his work mathematical tools to do PCA did not exist. Even if they did finding eigenvectors of large matrices w/o computers would be very cumbersome. He a priori postulated the existence of just one g so he defined a simpler less complex problem that guaranteed finding jus one g. He also looked for the second factor, the s-factor. These two factors were to account for the maximum of variance. This is how factor analysis (FA) was born. Invented by a non mathematician. Then once he had the two factors he still tweaked them by rotating them. He was using various ad hoc criteria’s to decide on the angle of rotation. In 1950s in order to salvage the FA (there were criticisms on its arbitrariness) various mathematical criteria and algorithms were developed that invoked vectors rotations as well as non-orthogonal rotations. Nowadays FA starts with PCA when the dominant vectors are found and then they are tweaked and there are different tweaking methods. Each will produce different g. Thus g is not unique. Different criteria produce different g. One set of data may yield different g’s depending which method is used. I presume that researchers following Jensen’s work through the process of convergence eventually agreed which method to use so their results that suppose to reinforce each other (this is a social group with common interests) are consistent.

    There is also aspect of empirical non-uniqueness. Different batteries of subtest produce different g’s that are mutually correlated but not identical. This is one of the reason why no scale of g was ever created. That’s why g unlike IQ is not used to label the test subjects. You never hear that you need to have at least g=0.7 to go to college or what is Asian g as opposed to African g, right? Nobody knows if g=0.7 is good or bad because no scale was created nor agreed upon. So where does g is used? In research papers, where it is either argued by faction A that we showed that we have one g or by faction B that these two g’s are not really the same g or by faction C that one g is not enough and we need to look at s-factor as well. Pointless and meaningless efforts.

    The bottom line is that most what you will hear about g is hyped up. It is just a rhetorical device. Nothing else. But once you understand the mathematics behind it you see it is a trivial concept that is also inevitable.

    I suspect that Gould’s argument about g were correct though I will have to read him.

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    • Replies: @Peter Johnson
    Factor analysis, or "g" as you term it, is not only used in intelligence research, it is used in engineering, biology, chemistry, physics, finance, health research, marketing, etc. etc. So if you have a new mathematical proof that factor analysis is mathematically invalid, you need to explain it carefully to tens of thousand of researchers using "g" successfully in hundreds of thousands of applications over the last fifty years. Good luck with that.
    , @RonaldB
    Thanks so much for your very enlightening and comprehendable explanation of a technical mathematical analysis.

    As I recall from my student days, the purpose of the rotation of the Principle Components is not only to simplify the mathematics, which has not been a big deal since computers came into common usage, but to improve interpretability of the factors. The criteria was to have each factor contain a few items with high weights and the rest with low weights. The factor was then identified by the items with the high weightings.

    The real question is how close to any sort of reality are the factors? Does the rotation give you a concept which, in fact, is useful, valid, and reliable?

    PCA and factor analysis are correlational methods. They are based on co-variance, or correlation coefficients. You may have items which hang together statistically, but is the relationship a physical association, or simply a coincidental association as a result of a particular background? There is probably a hefty correlation between lung cancer and buying cigarettes from a convenience store, but banning cigarettes from convenience stores would not lower the incidence of lung cancer.

    If we concede that intelligence is a multi-genetic trait, there is no way that a g factor would hang together over time unless there were a selection process maintaining the correlation. My own suspicion, entirely without corroborating evidence, is that modern welfare society dramatically removes all environmental stresses on survivability. The result is that the natural rate of genetic mutation uncouples all the correlated traits caused by particular environmental stresses.

    I suspect this is part of the explanation of why high-IQ societies such as Sweden are committing suicide through migration at such a fast and incomprehensible rate. Sweden is also one of the oldest social-welfare states. The traits previously correlated with, say, verbal ability, such as integrity and courage, have been decoupled to the extent that the traits needed to achieve political success are decoupled from any traits associated with accomplishment or even comprehension. Again, this is pure speculation.
    , @res

    I did not read Gould’s Mismeasure of Man, so I do not know what points he made. But I can give my opinion about g. I suspect Gould would have agreed with me.
    ...
    I suspect that Gould’s argument about g were correct though I will have to read him.
     
    Fascinating. Contrast that with this comment from utu after I criticized Gould in another thread (emphasis mine, I also added the context of his initial comment and my response as well as parenthetical notes of who said what):
    http://www.unz.com/jthompson/the-woodley-effect/#comment-1771365


    (utu)
    “going back to Thomson and Thorndike, and including Stephen J Gould and Cosma Shalizi.”
    “And all of these claims have come to ruin ” – they all made very legitimate points.
     

    (res)
    Perhaps you could point me to a legitimate point made by Steven J Gould? I read The Mismeasure of Man and found it a classic example of a rhetorical polemic lacking in substance. The best part was where he misrepresented Morton’s skull work and in a later edition added a mea culpa footnote. But even that wasn’t enough. Here is an article discussing some follow up work checking up on Gould’s analysis of Morton’s work: http://discovermagazine.com/2012/jan-feb/59
     
    (utu)
    I agree with you about Gould arguments. He should not be in the list. I copied it and pasted.
     
    , @siberiancat
    You can have a covariance matrix that yields two roughly equal first eigenvalues if the variables are divided into two groups correlated within each other but not cross-correlated. This would be easily interpreted as two kinds of intelligence if applied to the cognitive research.

    The fact that eigenvalues fade very quickly, and the first one is much greater than the second is an argument in favor of the concept of g.
    , @AnotherDad

    The bottom line is that most what you will hear about g is hyped up. It is just a rhetorical device. Nothing else. But once you understand the mathematics behind it you see it is a trivial concept that is also inevitable.
     
    Missing the point.

    The point isn't that you can do factor analysis and come up with a "g", the point is that the "g" you come up with is strong.

    First off--if you had no prior knowledge of humanity--the subtest correlations do not even have to be positive. That's sort of the (older) hyper-nerd model, some guy who's good at math+science by re-purposing the parts of his brain that would have been doing verbal and appreciating poetry. And so he's math smart and verbal dumb. That's not the case.

    Secondly, not only are all the subtest correlations positive, but they don't throw up multiple "g"s, they through up one "g". There isn't some "general verbal factor" that accounts for most human language skills, and then a separate "general math factor" that accounts for math skills. No there's a huge "general smarts factor" that accounts for people being what we think of as "smart" and then much, much smaller components. I.e. the nerd is a nerd first and foremost because he's "smart" and can do the math and as a result he also pretty good at the verbal too. (The "multiple intelligence" guys are just wrong.)

    These two points--all positive correlations and one huge first component rather than multiple strong components is real information about human intelligence. Though i admit it's hardly earth-shattering insight to people with any life experience. Even at a young age one figures out that some of your peers are "smart" and some "non-smart". And you expect the smart ones to be better at figuring stuff out than the less smart ones even if this one has a more mathematical bent, this one more artistic, this one more literary, this one more mechanical.

    The underlying biological reality being captured here is that some brains are just "better" or "faster and more efficient processors". Some combination or cortex volume, neural densities or synapse processing (neurotransmitters, neural receptors, etc.) This is the stuff the neurogenomics guys should be figuring out.
    , @HA
    "Any nonnegative symmetric matrix can be decomposed into principal components by some method. Different methods yield different results. One of this component will have larger loadings than any other component on average. Arriving at g from the covariance matrix which from its definition is nonnegative and symmetric is a mathematical necessity."

    As noted earlier, nonnegativity of the matrix is irrelevant here, so I'm not sure why you mention it. Did you mean positive definite? Secondly, your second sentence -- that I boldfaced -- is simply incorrect. Try doing a PCA on, say, random data. You can do that with an Excel spreadsheet -- google it. You'll see that the eigenvalues are actually more or less equal, up to a noise differential that gets smaller and smaller as your data sample gets larger. If that's not the case, it means your random data generator is flawed.

    Also, "g" would not be irrelevant or trivial even if there were some still-larger factors. In fact, there ARE larger factors -- some very obvious ones -- but typically one chooses samples with that in mind. For example, we don't administer IQ tests to penguins along with humans (unless we're in a Monty Python skit) or to children who are severely mentally disabled. If we did, the "IsNotAPenguin" and "IsNotSeverelyMentallyDisabled" variables would both be far more "explanatory" than "g" is, and the associated factor loadings would likewise be far greater. So that's irrelevant, too.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QhtfizONYOc

  141. @Kit
    I realize none of you Hard Scientists think very much of the study of history, but if you'd crack a popular history book about, oh, the Jim Crow era, you would learn one very good example of something that gets repeated throughout history -- humans treat those they perceive as inferior like shit, and will use all the power of the government to enforce that shit-state. If Murray is correct and people with significant sub-Saharan ancestry really do have less cognitive ability than those of European or Asian, the smarter groups will start imposing painful legal restrictions on the dumber groups. For one example, the death penalty cannot be imposed on someone with an IQ below 70. I have read Sailer suggesting, often, that a black person with an IQ of 70 isn't nearly as impaired as a white person at the same level. So, why not eliminate that restriction on the use of the death penalty when the defendant is black?

    If you read history, you would learn that humans pretty much suck, and suck far worse in groups than as individuals. That is why ideas like Murray's are so very appalling. He's writing the script for the reintroduction of Jim Crow laws. (Also "The Handmaid's Tale," as his views of women are, if anything, worse than his views of blacks. We're only good as breeders and floor-scrubbers and not one other thing. If you read the end of Atwood's novel, she describes a character based on Murray as one of the architects of Gilead. And yes, I believe Sailer and Murray would absolutely adore being Commanders of the Faithful, with Handmaids and powerless, miserable wives. It's their dearest wish to be in charge AND to make everyone else miserable.)

    >We’re only good as breeders and floor-scrubbers

    Not at all. Some of you can cook too

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  142. @kaganovitch
    By "Many whitebread communities". he means Fishtown and the like.

    By “Many whitebread communities”. he means Fishtown and the like.

    If that’s the case, he’s never been in or near Fishtown.

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    • Replies: @Sid
    What's so bizarre about Charles Murray in this decade is how he believes in two things:

    1. We should accept that intelligence has a strong hereditary component and different races most likely have different levels of mean intelligence.

    2. We should not change or develop policy in light of this realization.

    I think his current shtick is that race realism shouldn't trump liberal values. Fine, but let's make sure our values are also based in reality!
  143. @Steve Sailer
    Has Bryan ever been to Mexico and noticed the geography? Mexico isn't quite France, but it sure isn't Chad.

    Maybe he means the poor should move south towards the equator to warmer temperatures, longer growing seasons and greater rainfall which is all more favorable to agriculture. Fruit trees like oranges only grow in the far southern regions of America because the rest is too cold, and tropical fruits like bananas not at all.

    Iceland, Sweden and Canada with it’s snowy winters compare unfavorably with the warm climates and rich soils of Africa.

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  144. @LemmusLemmus
    So, reading through this, it appears that the authors agree with Murray about most of the substance. Why do they give it such a different spin? Maybe because:

    "No reasonable person would be offended by the observation that African people have curlier hair than the Chinese, notwithstanding the possibility of some future environment in which it is no longer true. But we can recognize a contention that Chinese people are genetically predisposed to be better table tennis players than Africans as silly, and the contention that they are smarter than Africans as ugly, because it is a matter of ethical principle that individual and cultural accomplishment is not tied to the genes in the same way as the appearance of our hair."

    It is a matter of ethical principle. That's one of the authors, Turkheimer, ten years ago. Source: https://www.cato-unbound.org/2007/11/21/eric-turkheimer/race-iq

    It’s not about an “ethical principle”, and it’s not fear of a 4th Reich. What I wrote on LOTB’s blog about this recently:

    I don’t think they care much about the black-white gap. Most probably don’t even acknowledge it exists.

    The real reason why the hereditary component of IQ troubles them is that it challenges the morality of the meritocracy they benefit from and believe in. They assuage their guilt over inequality by donating money to educational institutions and by voting for Dems who promise to “invest more” in education.

    Acknowledging hereditary inequality in aptitude blows that all up.

    As someone there wrote in response:

    It’s this. It’s entirely about the technocratic meritocracy. Bringing the grace of God into individual outcomes diminishes the moral weight of “merit.” Well placed leftist technocrats suddenly aren’t better people who worked hard.

    The left doesn’t care about nature/nurture vice black IQ. They’re just annoyed that the visibly obvious persistent black underclass complicates their meritocratic status assignment credential machine.

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    • Replies: @anonymouslee
    One of my favorite book titles of all time is GA Cohen's "If you're an egalitarian how come you're so rich?"

    He was aiming at 1% professors and the like who get to have prestige, power and wealth while also bathing in moral superiority because they're political rawlsians, etc. nice work if you can get it
    , @dcthrowback
    "hereditary inequality" = white privilege
  145. @FactsAreImportant
    OT, Bryan Caplan (almost literally) argues in favor of "magic dirt."

    Geography is Policy

    ... The harsh reality is that geography has a huge effect on countries' economic success. ... Social scientists who accept the power of geography tend to get pretty pessimistic about development. If poor countries adopted the institutions and policies of rich countries, they still wouldn't do very well. ... And that's where the geo-centric economists are completely wrong.

    Contrary to their own self-image, their view is radically optimistic. Consider the extreme scenario where geography is the sole determinant of national prosperity. Is there anything mankind could do to swiftly raise per-capita GDP? Absolutely: Move people from poor countries to rich countries. Is that the kind of thing that policy can change? Again, absolutely: Legalize movement from poor countries to rich countries. How much would that accomplish? Given the draconian regulations now on the books, such deregulation would swiftly transform the world.

    In the real world, of course, geography isn't the sole global problem, so deregulating migration isn't a full-blown panacea for global ills. But if Sachs is remotely right, this deregulation is the closest thing to a panacea we've got. Bad geography only retards human progress insofar as humans remain in locations with bad geography. And once it's legal, humans will vacate the bad areas on a massive scale.

     

    http://econlog.econlib.org/archives/2017/05/geography_is_po.html

    Bad geography only retards human progress insofar as humans remain in locations with bad geography. And once it’s legal, humans will vacate the bad areas on a massive scale.

    Does that mean Iceland and Sweden can send the migrants away from their cold, rocky soil to sunnier, fertile climes, like the Indus valley?

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  146. @LemmusLemmus
    So, reading through this, it appears that the authors agree with Murray about most of the substance. Why do they give it such a different spin? Maybe because:

    "No reasonable person would be offended by the observation that African people have curlier hair than the Chinese, notwithstanding the possibility of some future environment in which it is no longer true. But we can recognize a contention that Chinese people are genetically predisposed to be better table tennis players than Africans as silly, and the contention that they are smarter than Africans as ugly, because it is a matter of ethical principle that individual and cultural accomplishment is not tied to the genes in the same way as the appearance of our hair."

    It is a matter of ethical principle. That's one of the authors, Turkheimer, ten years ago. Source: https://www.cato-unbound.org/2007/11/21/eric-turkheimer/race-iq

    Didn’t it used to be a matter of ethical principle that God created a terracentric world from nothing in six days, that the fossils of dinosaurs were the remnants of dragons, and that diseases were caused by evil spirits?

    I thought science had to do with empiricism, irrespective of principles. Children’s deaths from from cancer certainly do not comport with ehtical ideas about fairness and justness, so must we deny that they occur…?

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  147. @Buck Turgidson
    If memory serves, Murray lives in a 99% white/white bread community in Maryland just outside the Beltway. So he would rather live in a place like McAllen TX or a Somali 'hood in the Twin Cities vs all-white 'white bread' Newport Beach CA? First of all, that's a lie and secondly, not many people would go for McAllen over NB.

    Here is an extremely important work by Murray:

    https://www.amazon.com/Income-Inequality-Studies-Understanding-Economic/dp/0844770949

    “Income Inequality and IQ (AEI Studies on Understanding Economic Inequality) – January 1, 1998″.
    Let us make a judgement about this Scientist by his greatest achievements,
    not by flaws of his character (which flaws each of us mortals has.)
    Supposedly great physicist Albert Michelson (rumors)

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Albert_A._Michelson

    was wife beater,
    not to be confused with the specific type of a garment for males:

    https://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_ss_i_4_6?url=search-alias%3Dfashion-mens&field-keywords=white+beaters+for+men&sprefix=beater%

    But we remember and respect Michelson for outstanding achievements in Physics.

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  148. @Robert Hume
    I'm aware that that is the generally accepted explanation. However, the improvement in diet occurred at the same time as the movement of populations, so it seems plausible to me that sexual selection in a situation of greater available choice might have the same result.

    But you do bring up an important issue; how can we distinguish between the two explanations?

    One approach might be to find an isolated population, perhaps a religious minority, which remained in a single location and for which there was no marriage outside the population. If it could be shown that their diet I had improved just as had that of the rest of the population; and that the sexual selection possibilities were also much the same; but that their height had not increased or decreased, that would favor the sexual selection hypothesis. And vice versa.

    sexual selections acts far too slowly.

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    • Replies: @Robert Hume
    Even during sudden massive changes in the external conditions of the population?
  149. @Kit
    I realize none of you Hard Scientists think very much of the study of history, but if you'd crack a popular history book about, oh, the Jim Crow era, you would learn one very good example of something that gets repeated throughout history -- humans treat those they perceive as inferior like shit, and will use all the power of the government to enforce that shit-state. If Murray is correct and people with significant sub-Saharan ancestry really do have less cognitive ability than those of European or Asian, the smarter groups will start imposing painful legal restrictions on the dumber groups. For one example, the death penalty cannot be imposed on someone with an IQ below 70. I have read Sailer suggesting, often, that a black person with an IQ of 70 isn't nearly as impaired as a white person at the same level. So, why not eliminate that restriction on the use of the death penalty when the defendant is black?

    If you read history, you would learn that humans pretty much suck, and suck far worse in groups than as individuals. That is why ideas like Murray's are so very appalling. He's writing the script for the reintroduction of Jim Crow laws. (Also "The Handmaid's Tale," as his views of women are, if anything, worse than his views of blacks. We're only good as breeders and floor-scrubbers and not one other thing. If you read the end of Atwood's novel, she describes a character based on Murray as one of the architects of Gilead. And yes, I believe Sailer and Murray would absolutely adore being Commanders of the Faithful, with Handmaids and powerless, miserable wives. It's their dearest wish to be in charge AND to make everyone else miserable.)

    humans treat those they perceive as inferior like shit, and will use all the power of the government to enforce that shit-state. [35 words later] For one example, the death penalty cannot be imposed on someone with an IQ below 70.

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  150. The most remarkable thing about the Vox piece is that the authors don’t deny the truth of their claims 1 – 3. Given the terribly low expectations for public discourse on this topic, that’s something.

    > 1) Intelligence, as measured by IQ tests, is a meaningful construct that describes differences in cognitive ability among humans.
    > 2) Individual differences in intelligence are moderately heritable.
    > 3) Racial groups differ in their mean scores on IQ tests.
    > 4) Discoveries about genetic ancestry have validated commonly used racial groupings.
    > 5) On the basis of points 1 through 4, it is natural to assume that the reasons for racial differences in IQ scores are themselves at least partly genetic.

    They do, however, get #4 wrong in a way that’s entirely unnecessary. They write:

    > Murray talks about advances in population genetics as if they have validated modern racial groups. In reality, the racial groups used in the US — white, black, Hispanic, Asian — are such a poor proxy for underlying genetic ancestry that no self-respecting statistical geneticist would undertake a study based only on self-identified racial category as a proxy for genetic ancestry measured from DNA.

    Of course that’s false. Risch et al (2002) answered that question and it’s been corroborated since then. Even on a charitable reading of their claim (e.g. one-drop rule and other social factors skew racial identification), it’s at best irrelevant. As Murray describes at length in the podcast, any lack of perfect correlation between self-identified racial and ethnic groups and genetically definable populations merely attenuates our ability to observe a genetic effect and thus the fact that we see such large phenotypic group differences does nothing to make a genetic hypothesis less likely. Such a refutation would require literally no genetic basis for racial groups at all, which is of course not the case.

    Their arguments in favor of an entirely environmental explanation are weak and suffer from a failure to discuss contrary evidence. There arguments mostly consist of reasons why it’s not logically necessary for their to be a genetic component. It was never logically necessary, and so their arguments are mostly weak. As a piece of scholarship, this article is thus shoddy. But as a polemic it is not terrible.

    Although many folks in the HBD-sphere lauded them at the time, Jensen and Rushton’s 2005 review article was similarly lopsided. Much of the evidence they presented for a hereditarian hypothesis was also weak. The method of correlated vectors has been shown to be non-specific, for example. The strongest evidence comes from things like transracial adoption studies and the handful of nearly direct genetic tests (e.g. admixture analysis with proxy variables like educational attainment). There’s also the fact that a definitive test (genetic admixture analysis) has been feasible for at least a decade and yet somehow never done.

    Back to the Vox article: the authors bring up the Flynn Effect and then dismiss the rather lengthy exposition in the podcast as “hand-waving”. Murray properly cites Jelte Wicherts’ work on measurement invariance and the fact that it causes one to doubt the relevance of the Flynn effect for Black-White IQ differences.

    So what about the author’s claim that “there is no evidence for any such genetic hypothesis”? Well, yes and no. The smoking gun hasn’t been uncovered because the proper experiment has never been performed, and even in 2017 we really should be agnostic as to the extent to which genes cause IQ differences between races. However, there have been enough near hits and all of them have been in the direction of a genetic effect.

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    • Replies: @Logan
    "So what about the author’s claim that “there is no evidence for any such genetic hypothesis”?"

    They make this claim and then go over a whole bunch of evidence. What they actually mean to say is that, "While there is a good deal of evidence for the genetic hypothesis, the evidence is not sufficient to constitute proof." Which is a very different statement indeed.

    For some obscure reason many, including scientists, will commonly state "there is no evidence," when what they really mean is "there is insufficient evidence."
  151. @newrouter
    " because Barrack had a white parent (which would not be obvious except for that biographical tidbit) and Michelle did not, Barrack must be more intelligent. "

    baracky's dad via wiki:

    "Barack Hussein Obama Sr. (/ˈbærək huːˈseɪn oʊˈbɑːmə/;[11][12] 18 June 1936[2] – 24 November 1982) was a Kenyan senior governmental economist and the father of Barack Obama, the 44th President of the United States. He is a central figure of his son's memoir, Dreams from My Father (1995). Obama married in 1954 and had two children with his first wife, Kezia. He was selected for a special program to attend college in the United States, and studied at the University of Hawaii. There, Obama met Stanley Ann Dunham, whom he married in 1961, and with whom he had a son, Barack II. She divorced him three years later.[13] The elder Obama later went to Harvard University for graduate school, where he earned an M.A. in economics, and returned to Kenya in 1964."

    I thought Obama’s father was Frank Davis.

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  152. @Charles Erwin Wilson
    But the bridge will fall down.

    I'll believe them when they have surgery performed by the affirmative action recipient instead of the white doctor.

    To see this in math demonstrates that cancer in the body politic cannot be ignored. Next up: 2+2 = 5.

    Credit where credit is due, Kanye West’s mother Donda had her surgery performed by Dr. Jan Adams.

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  153. Indeed, the Flynn Effect is extremely interesting, as I’ve often pointed out.

    I think that Turkheimer was not really hard hitting. He could have hit harder emphasizing the Flynn effect which undermines the methodology and/or integrity in the IQ research. There are two possibilities:

    (1) Flynn effect is the actual intelligence increase which was hidden by the habit of normalization of IQ data. Flynn effect can be accounted by environmental effects only. The increase of IQ in Holland by 18 points on IQ scale is very significant. That’s good, right? We can make people smarter. The question is why the effect was hidden for so long and it took James Flynn to blow a whistle on it? Is it because IQ researcher are really a bunch of racists who do not like the result showing that environment has large impact on IQ?

    We often hear that IQ is constant during a lifetime (except for Blacks who went to Head Start when young and once they got older they also got more stupid again or so they say) how do we really know if various normalizations are done now and then and not all researchers are really aware of them. If they were they would discovered Flynn effect long before Flynn.

    What else is hidden from the public eye?

    (2) Flynn effect is not actual intelligence it is [here comes the hand waving] an effect of subjects getting just savvy and clever but not really smarter. Yeah, that’s ticket. If it so, how sure are they that the so-called smart fraction of their IQ tests are not just savvy and clever but not really smarter? Besides, what kind of science it is where the tape measure is shrinking? Perhaps the increase of height since WWII is also not real. I am sure there is some physical phenomena explaining a shrinkage of all tape measures in the world since WWII.

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    • Replies: @gregor
    If you give an IQ test to a cohort of 18 year olds and retest at, say, age 40, how robust is the ordinal ranking? If it's robust, that suggests IQ is pretty reliable over a lifetime, at least within the cohort. Contrary to your implication, I don't see why within-cohort reliability can't coexist with the observed Flynn effect.
  154. @Daniel Chieh
    The argument is that beyond genetics, there are also cultural practices, food, toilet paper use, etc that get passed from parent to child in a normal household. But, well, we've shown such environmental effects to be relatively and at any rate, I'm not seeing propositions to promote "white culture" to be engaged by SJWs either.

    Anyone who refers to passing down cultural traits with the term “heritability” is being misleading at best.

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  155. Murray says he has modified none of his views since the publication of the book, in 1994

    Mr. Murray, do you believe, in your best judgment, that you been rehabilitated?

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s7XRooRW8_4

    OK, OK, this is not the original from The Shawshank Redemption, but I’m kinda busy right now.

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  156. Anon says:     Show CommentNext New Comment
    @Kit
    I realize none of you Hard Scientists think very much of the study of history, but if you'd crack a popular history book about, oh, the Jim Crow era, you would learn one very good example of something that gets repeated throughout history -- humans treat those they perceive as inferior like shit, and will use all the power of the government to enforce that shit-state. If Murray is correct and people with significant sub-Saharan ancestry really do have less cognitive ability than those of European or Asian, the smarter groups will start imposing painful legal restrictions on the dumber groups. For one example, the death penalty cannot be imposed on someone with an IQ below 70. I have read Sailer suggesting, often, that a black person with an IQ of 70 isn't nearly as impaired as a white person at the same level. So, why not eliminate that restriction on the use of the death penalty when the defendant is black?

    If you read history, you would learn that humans pretty much suck, and suck far worse in groups than as individuals. That is why ideas like Murray's are so very appalling. He's writing the script for the reintroduction of Jim Crow laws. (Also "The Handmaid's Tale," as his views of women are, if anything, worse than his views of blacks. We're only good as breeders and floor-scrubbers and not one other thing. If you read the end of Atwood's novel, she describes a character based on Murray as one of the architects of Gilead. And yes, I believe Sailer and Murray would absolutely adore being Commanders of the Faithful, with Handmaids and powerless, miserable wives. It's their dearest wish to be in charge AND to make everyone else miserable.)

    Just be glad that you do not reside in the dozens of Muslim majority nations where blacks are still held as slaves , female genital mutilation is the order of the day , homosexually is punishable by the death penalty , women’s testimony is worth half a man’s testimony in court , conversion from Islam to Christianity is punishable by the death penalty and atheism is punishable by the death penalty. Talk about hateful , bigoted and abusive. And they are a cishet patriarchy to boot, bacha bazzi not withstanding.

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  157. @epochehusserl
    I realize none of you Hard Scientists think very much of the study of history, but if you’d crack a popular history book about, oh, the Jim Crow era, you would learn one very good example of something that gets repeated throughout history — humans treat those they perceive as inferior like shit, and will use all the power of the government to enforce that shit-state.
    ----------------------------------------------
    The equalists treat working white class like shit. They selectively enforce anti-discrimination laws and overlook uncivilized behavior by activists because they believe they are doing god's work. During Jim Crow blacks were never prevented from forming blacks only organizations. If a private employer group of people want to use IQ tests then why make a federal case out of it? The activists don't believe in equality for a second - they believe in payback. My ancestors were Italian and Native American and Eastern European and had nothing to do with the slave trade or jim crow and I have to listen to the most disgusting rhetoric aimed at me. For things neither me nor my ancestors had anything to do with! And all because people such as yourself want to virtue signal themselves into secular heaven!

    My ancestors were Italian and Native American and Eastern European and had nothing to do with the slave trade or jim crow and I have to listen to the most disgusting rhetoric aimed at me. For things neither me nor my ancestors had anything to do with!

    Read the SJW lit. It doesn’t matter what your ancestors did. All Europeans are guilty. All Europeans must pay.

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    • Replies: @epochehusserl
    Read the SJW lit. It doesn’t matter what your ancestors did. All Europeans are guilty. All Europeans must pay.
    -------------------------------------------
    I agree thats what the SJW lit says but it doesnt make it true. The reason I brought this up however was to attack Kit's assertion that equalism doesnt harm anyone. Deliberately evading the issue of racial differences in IQ in order to protect blacks from the theoretical actions of people isnt harmless. The Soviet Union was based upon the lie that human acquistiveness was immoral and many died. The Empire ended and brought in a reign of lawless mobsters. Ignoring racial and sex differences will probably end with a similiar reign of bloodshed.
  158. @LemmusLemmus
    So, reading through this, it appears that the authors agree with Murray about most of the substance. Why do they give it such a different spin? Maybe because:

    "No reasonable person would be offended by the observation that African people have curlier hair than the Chinese, notwithstanding the possibility of some future environment in which it is no longer true. But we can recognize a contention that Chinese people are genetically predisposed to be better table tennis players than Africans as silly, and the contention that they are smarter than Africans as ugly, because it is a matter of ethical principle that individual and cultural accomplishment is not tied to the genes in the same way as the appearance of our hair."

    It is a matter of ethical principle. That's one of the authors, Turkheimer, ten years ago. Source: https://www.cato-unbound.org/2007/11/21/eric-turkheimer/race-iq

    It is a matter of ethical principle ….

    Exactly. There’s not a lick of science or scientific thought here. This is a couple old reds demanding ideological submission. No science, just politics–or religion.

    In the context of actual “science” none of this stuff is even semi-controversial.

    A few points are sufficient:

    1) Any genetically influenced trait which varies between people in a population, must vary between population groups–families, tribes, races. *Must*.
    (I don’t know if the evo-bio guys have a named law for this, but if not just call it AnotherDad’s law. It’s just math.)

    The things “all humans share” are the things which are fixed–brain in skull, two eyes, upright walking, ten fingers, ten toes, etc. The things we vary in are the ones selection is working on and that selection is not identical. between population groups. Ergo those traits vary across population groups. (And it’s particularly ludicrous to think selection has been anything close to identical between separated races on the sort of mental traits of increasing use in “civilized life” during these past 10,000 years since the neolithic.)

    2) What the heck has selection been working on but mental traits–smarts, conscientiousness, etc. etc.
    Ok, disease resistance might top that. Potentially genes affecting metabolizing new foods in our diet. But we’re the thinking ape. Our big brain is our special survival skill. The idea we haven’t had wildly *increased* selection on mental traits these past few thousand years as we settled down and developed trade, metalurgy, social hierarchies, towns, cities, written language, money, industry … it’s ludicrous. And that selection was different everywhere due to different civilizations everywhere.

    3) For American blacks and whites, the data is in–the wave packet has collapsed.
    If a person did not understand the evolutionary stuff–points 1+2–then i’d say maybe as late as 4o or 50 years ago one could posit some sort of semi-credible environment hypothesis. Not so today. If US blacks of a given income\class\educational background raised kids that were within IQ shouting distance of white kids raised with the same background, and the overall black-white gap was simply because proportionally more white kids are in the higher classes, then we could still be having a real argument. But this is not close to being the case.

    Black kids with parents of the same social/educational class, living in the same neighborhoods, going to the same schools, eating food from the same grocery stores and restaurants are considerably behind their white peers. In fact, the most privileged blacks, from the highest US income quintile have mean SAT scores that barely beat whites from the lowest income quintile. All the other blacks are way way behind. Environmental explanations can account for something–perhaps. But they simply can’t account for the gap, because even well nurtured blacks, sharing the same environment are woefully behind their white peers.

    Again, if you’re talking about actual science, between basic evolutionary theory and the data we have, the big picture is crystal clear. (Debate would be about the size of effects, how they manifest themselves structurally, biochemically, finding particular genes, and perhaps how fast, various eugenic policies could improve things.) Turkheimer and company aren’t doing science. They are doing political/religious propaganda.

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    • Replies: @RonaldB
    To AnotherDad:

    I think you left out one of the most persuasive effects that Jensen raised in his paper ""How Much Can We Boost IQ and Scholastic Achievement?" That effect is regression to the mean. If a set of black parents are matched against a set of white parents, equivalent not only in environment, but in the IQ of the parents, the black parents will still have children of lower mean IQ than the white parents. The most parsimonious interpretation of this is that the population from which the black parents came was of a lower IQ, genetically-determined, than the population of the white parents.

    Regression to the mean, to be boringly pedantic about it, is the tendency of outliers in a population to have children that are closer to the population as a whole.

    An example of my father's researches, as a musician, came from the Bach family. Johann S. Bach came from a family of musicians, but obviously outshone them all by far. Interestingly enough, although he married a very talented musician, the children were gifted musicians, but none came close to Johann S. This illustrates regression to the mean.
  159. @ltravail
    So Michelle Obama comes from a prominent Chicago political family and verifiably attended Princeton and Harvard; Barrack Obama attended some obscure liberal arts college in CA for mediocre students from a prestigious Hawaiian private school, then wended his way to Columbia (though his attendance there remains an article of faith) and wound up at Harvard. In spite of all this, because Barrack had a white parent (which would not be obvious except for that biographical tidbit) and Michelle did not, Barrack must be more intelligent. Huh? OK. The author, of course, does not reveal how he determined this other than inferring it from Barrack's and Michelle's respective parental pairings. But if his conjecture indeed has legs, then the implied policy prescription for the IQ gap problem in this country is to encourage more propagation through "race mixing." Gets my vote, though I'm sure some of Mr. Sailer's fans will suffer major heartburn digesting that conclusion. I commend him on his forward thinking.

    Michelle’s family wasn’t a prominently political in Chicago. Her dad was a post man or something.

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  160. @Glaivester

    Heritability is not unique to IQ; in fact, virtually all differences among individual human beings are somewhat heritable.
     
    Who has ever argued that IQ is the only heritable trait?

    It’s imported to appear as if you’re conceding ground so as to look magnanimous and reasonable.

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  161. @Damn Crackers
    "Obama would much rather munch ice cream on Martha’s Vineyard..."

    Please refrain from the tasteless gay ex-president jokes.

    Who’s this ‘ice cream’ dude, anyway?

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  162. @jimmyriddle
    "Modern DNA science has found hundreds of genetic variants that each have a very, very tiny association with intelligence"

    Duh. Hence, a bell curve.

    A gaussian probability distribution arises when the thing being measured depends on many factors, none of which have a large impact.

    I had to regurgitate a proof of this in a Probability and Stochastic Processes exam in the 2nd year of my BSc.

    The central limit theorem is racist. Straight up.

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  163. @syonredux

    My ancestors were Italian and Native American and Eastern European and had nothing to do with the slave trade or jim crow and I have to listen to the most disgusting rhetoric aimed at me. For things neither me nor my ancestors had anything to do with!
     
    Read the SJW lit. It doesn't matter what your ancestors did. All Europeans are guilty. All Europeans must pay.

    Read the SJW lit. It doesn’t matter what your ancestors did. All Europeans are guilty. All Europeans must pay.
    ——————————————-
    I agree thats what the SJW lit says but it doesnt make it true. The reason I brought this up however was to attack Kit’s assertion that equalism doesnt harm anyone. Deliberately evading the issue of racial differences in IQ in order to protect blacks from the theoretical actions of people isnt harmless. The Soviet Union was based upon the lie that human acquistiveness was immoral and many died. The Empire ended and brought in a reign of lawless mobsters. Ignoring racial and sex differences will probably end with a similiar reign of bloodshed.

    Read More
  164. @AnotherDad

    It is a matter of ethical principle ....
     
    Exactly. There's not a lick of science or scientific thought here. This is a couple old reds demanding ideological submission. No science, just politics--or religion.

    In the context of actual "science" none of this stuff is even semi-controversial.

    A few points are sufficient:

    1) Any genetically influenced trait which varies between people in a population, must vary between population groups--families, tribes, races. *Must*.
    (I don't know if the evo-bio guys have a named law for this, but if not just call it AnotherDad's law. It's just math.)

    The things "all humans share" are the things which are fixed--brain in skull, two eyes, upright walking, ten fingers, ten toes, etc. The things we vary in are the ones selection is working on and that selection is not identical. between population groups. Ergo those traits vary across population groups. (And it's particularly ludicrous to think selection has been anything close to identical between separated races on the sort of mental traits of increasing use in "civilized life" during these past 10,000 years since the neolithic.)

    2) What the heck has selection been working on but mental traits--smarts, conscientiousness, etc. etc.
    Ok, disease resistance might top that. Potentially genes affecting metabolizing new foods in our diet. But we're the thinking ape. Our big brain is our special survival skill. The idea we haven't had wildly *increased* selection on mental traits these past few thousand years as we settled down and developed trade, metalurgy, social hierarchies, towns, cities, written language, money, industry ... it's ludicrous. And that selection was different everywhere due to different civilizations everywhere.

    3) For American blacks and whites, the data is in--the wave packet has collapsed.
    If a person did not understand the evolutionary stuff--points 1+2--then i'd say maybe as late as 4o or 50 years ago one could posit some sort of semi-credible environment hypothesis. Not so today. If US blacks of a given income\class\educational background raised kids that were within IQ shouting distance of white kids raised with the same background, and the overall black-white gap was simply because proportionally more white kids are in the higher classes, then we could still be having a real argument. But this is not close to being the case.

    Black kids with parents of the same social/educational class, living in the same neighborhoods, going to the same schools, eating food from the same grocery stores and restaurants are considerably behind their white peers. In fact, the most privileged blacks, from the highest US income quintile have mean SAT scores that barely beat whites from the lowest income quintile. All the other blacks are way way behind. Environmental explanations can account for something--perhaps. But they simply can't account for the gap, because even well nurtured blacks, sharing the same environment are woefully behind their white peers.

    Again, if you're talking about actual science, between basic evolutionary theory and the data we have, the big picture is crystal clear. (Debate would be about the size of effects, how they manifest themselves structurally, biochemically, finding particular genes, and perhaps how fast, various eugenic policies could improve things.) Turkheimer and company aren't doing science. They are doing political/religious propaganda.

    To AnotherDad:

    I think you left out one of the most persuasive effects that Jensen raised in his paper “”How Much Can We Boost IQ and Scholastic Achievement?” That effect is regression to the mean. If a set of black parents are matched against a set of white parents, equivalent not only in environment, but in the IQ of the parents, the black parents will still have children of lower mean IQ than the white parents. The most parsimonious interpretation of this is that the population from which the black parents came was of a lower IQ, genetically-determined, than the population of the white parents.

    Regression to the mean, to be boringly pedantic about it, is the tendency of outliers in a population to have children that are closer to the population as a whole.

    An example of my father’s researches, as a musician, came from the Bach family. Johann S. Bach came from a family of musicians, but obviously outshone them all by far. Interestingly enough, although he married a very talented musician, the children were gifted musicians, but none came close to Johann S. This illustrates regression to the mean.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Judah Benjamin Hur
    Carl Philipp Emanuel and Johann Christian were geniuses in their own right.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bDSGrQadsEM&t=718s

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZCr0l_0Gkno
    , @guest
    That's not a very good example of regression, because as another poster pointed out Bach's offspring were exceptionally talented. Though you're right in saying Daddy Bach outshone the rest, how many great composers produced two children who are still famous names, at least in the classical music world, 200+ years later?

    CPE Bach and JC Bach are firmly in the Western music cannon. Bach's eldest son, Wilhelm Friedemann Bach, is a lesser-known composer, but still somewhat known. JCF was also a composer and virtuoso, I think, but I don't know anything about his music. One grandson of Bach--JCF's son--became a famous composer in his own time: Wilhelm Friedrich Ernst Bach. He's not known anymore.

    That's five successful descendants in a difficult and competitive field. Most impressively, two world-famous offspring, whose accomplishments far outlived their natural lives. Now, JS's talents were as far beyond his sons' and grandsons as he was beyond other great composers. But still, I wouldn't use the Bach family as a regression example.
    , @utu
    Regression to the mean, to be boringly pedantic about it, is the tendency of outliers in a population to have children that are closer to the population as a whole.

    The regression to the mean should work in both direction. Children of smart parents are less smart than them and children of stupid parents are smarter than them.

    If the breeder's equation really works as advertised then its effect should be narrowing the standard deviation of IQ in population providing there is no selective breeding and no mutations.
  165. @Robert Hume
    Do you think a guaranteed annual income might do the trick?

    Robert Hume asks, “Do you think a guaranteed annual income might do the trick?”

    Yes, I think it is an important part of the answer, at least in the form Milton Friedman proposed (a negative income tax), whose sophistication I did not appreciate until I watched this 15 minute interview on Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xtpgkX588nM

    That still leaves the problem of how to raise the revenues required to fully fund such a program. For that I propose a single parameter version of the graduated expenditure tax, which I describe in a one-page appendix to my Notes Toward a New Way of Life in America:

    https://docs.google.com/document/d/1WIdVnQEWdYgYYly9iKkesWCVhfINvbtwuVq2GMOxMbw/edit?usp=sharing

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    • Replies: @Anonymous
    Barack communicates more effectively, but he and Michelle are probably fairly close in raw IQ. Assuming their girls are both theirs, which I think is probable, they will probably be 95 to 105 IQ. In other words Talented Tenth but not really in the league of those they will associate with in life, and will resent it.
    , @Jim Don Bob
    We already have a guaranteed income; it's called the EITC put in place by the HATED HATED HATED Richard Nixon.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Earned_income_tax_credit
  166. @Anon
    Murray peddling Junk Science?

    No way.

    That's Bill Nye's specialty.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Wllc5gSc-N8

    The bit might work better if that person were capable of dancing (or merely moving around in a coordinated manner), singing, and cracking jokes at the same time. But they don’t train for that stuff anymore, do they?

    Or is part of the joke that she’s a bad hip-hopper? More of a joke than the actual jokes, I suppose.

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  167. Off-topic, but interesting account – through the eyes of his daughter – of a black GI taken prisoner during the Korean War, after which he defected to China. His daughter opens up about his return to America as a refugee from China’s Cultural Revolution, with Chinese wife and two children in tow, complicated by the fallout from what many considered treasonous* behavior:

    “It was just a very unhappy time,” recalls Della, who, along with her brother, had been told for a long time they were only on holiday. Her mother, who died in 2007, remained resolute throughout. “She was tough and could take care of herself. She went on the run from the Japanese army at the age of 10, so she wasn’t easily scared,” Della says. “I just kept asking her when we were going home.”

    At school, in the black neighbourhoods of Memphis, Della experienced racism and bullying for the first time. In China, she had been taught to study hard and be polite. “I became the teacher’s pet … the other kids hated me,” she recalls.

    This loathing was made worse by the fact she looked different. Her father taught her to fight off every bully but it was challenging and, she thinks, Louis never came to terms with it.

    “He chose some very bad paths to go down,” she says, euphemistically, of her brother, with whom she has lost contact.

    Having rejected America because of racism by white people, Clarence Adams now saw his children being traumatised by racism practised by black people and was suffering a level of poverty he’d not known in Beijing.

    Upon returning stateside, the man opened a chain of Chinese restaurants, but his son lost his way, like so many black youth, despite being the son of a successful entrepreneur and the grandson of a Nationalist Chinese general, on his mother’s side.

    * It’s possible, or perhaps even likely, that he acted as an informant for his Chinese captors in the POW camps.

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  168. @ltravail
    So Michelle Obama comes from a prominent Chicago political family and verifiably attended Princeton and Harvard; Barrack Obama attended some obscure liberal arts college in CA for mediocre students from a prestigious Hawaiian private school, then wended his way to Columbia (though his attendance there remains an article of faith) and wound up at Harvard. In spite of all this, because Barrack had a white parent (which would not be obvious except for that biographical tidbit) and Michelle did not, Barrack must be more intelligent. Huh? OK. The author, of course, does not reveal how he determined this other than inferring it from Barrack's and Michelle's respective parental pairings. But if his conjecture indeed has legs, then the implied policy prescription for the IQ gap problem in this country is to encourage more propagation through "race mixing." Gets my vote, though I'm sure some of Mr. Sailer's fans will suffer major heartburn digesting that conclusion. I commend him on his forward thinking.

    In spite of all this, because Barrack had a white parent (which would not be obvious except for that biographical tidbit)

    From coloration alone, it’s obvious that Obama has non-African ancestry. Whether it’s white, native American or Asian is not as clear, but he would have gotten flak for it in a black majority public school, in the form of racist slurs. The children of this GI certainly did.

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  169. @Kit
    I realize none of you Hard Scientists think very much of the study of history, but if you'd crack a popular history book about, oh, the Jim Crow era, you would learn one very good example of something that gets repeated throughout history -- humans treat those they perceive as inferior like shit, and will use all the power of the government to enforce that shit-state. If Murray is correct and people with significant sub-Saharan ancestry really do have less cognitive ability than those of European or Asian, the smarter groups will start imposing painful legal restrictions on the dumber groups. For one example, the death penalty cannot be imposed on someone with an IQ below 70. I have read Sailer suggesting, often, that a black person with an IQ of 70 isn't nearly as impaired as a white person at the same level. So, why not eliminate that restriction on the use of the death penalty when the defendant is black?

    If you read history, you would learn that humans pretty much suck, and suck far worse in groups than as individuals. That is why ideas like Murray's are so very appalling. He's writing the script for the reintroduction of Jim Crow laws. (Also "The Handmaid's Tale," as his views of women are, if anything, worse than his views of blacks. We're only good as breeders and floor-scrubbers and not one other thing. If you read the end of Atwood's novel, she describes a character based on Murray as one of the architects of Gilead. And yes, I believe Sailer and Murray would absolutely adore being Commanders of the Faithful, with Handmaids and powerless, miserable wives. It's their dearest wish to be in charge AND to make everyone else miserable.)

    Fine, but pay for them and police them, and keep them out of sight.

    That means no magic negro media bs as well, and no disparate impact lack of enforcement/lack of standards/frivolous lawsuit bs

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  170. Anonymous says:     Show CommentNext New Comment
    @Luke Lea
    Robert Hume asks, "Do you think a guaranteed annual income might do the trick?"

    Yes, I think it is an important part of the answer, at least in the form Milton Friedman proposed (a negative income tax), whose sophistication I did not appreciate until I watched this 15 minute interview on Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xtpgkX588nM

    That still leaves the problem of how to raise the revenues required to fully fund such a program. For that I propose a single parameter version of the graduated expenditure tax, which I describe in a one-page appendix to my Notes Toward a New Way of Life in America:

    https://docs.google.com/document/d/1WIdVnQEWdYgYYly9iKkesWCVhfINvbtwuVq2GMOxMbw/edit?usp=sharing

    Barack communicates more effectively, but he and Michelle are probably fairly close in raw IQ. Assuming their girls are both theirs, which I think is probable, they will probably be 95 to 105 IQ. In other words Talented Tenth but not really in the league of those they will associate with in life, and will resent it.

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    • Replies: @Pericles
    The Obama children have already been marshalled through the most exquisite private schools that haut-bourgeois America has to offer, so it shouldn't be a shock to anyone in the know.

    I assume there will be another genteel conspiracy of silence about their performance. Perhaps that they will 'act out' and hypothetically dropping out will be attributed to this if the public becomes aware. (Their sainted daddy had some sketchy academic years too, hadn't he?)

    But then, does anyone ever fail Ivy League these days? They will be just fine, don't worry.
  171. @PoorGradStudent
    This was clearly a high effort piece by Turkheimer and Nesbitt. I wouldn't expect anyone to throughly debunk something with this level of sneaky rhetorical sophistication 5 hours after publication. I certainly couldn't begin to, particularly since I am not an expert. Little things jump out at me that bely bias and hostility on the part of the authors though:

    "Until you get to 5, none of the premises is completely incorrect.". This would be more accurately and neutrally stated as "Until you get to 4, all of the premises are unambiguously true and non-controversial".

    "These observations do not undermine the conclusion that intelligence is heritable, but rather the naive assumption that heritable traits cannot be changed via environmental mechanisms. (Murray flatly tells Harris that this is the case.)"

    I haven't listened to the podcast, and Turkheimer doesn't cite the point in the podcast when Murray "flatly tells Harris that this is the case". I suspect that Charles Murray understands that the heritability of intelligence, height, etc would be much lower in populations exposed to extreme deprivation, such as wartime famine conditions. Murray has discussed the Wilson effect before - that the heritability of IQ increases with age, and early childhood interventions can increase the IQ of young children. Murray is likely referring to the failure of intensive childhood interventions to produce results approaching middle class white norms among lower and middle class African American groups.

    "There is currently no reason at all to think that any significant portion of the IQ differences among socially defined racial groups is genetic in origin."

    There is very good reason. We have controlled for the most obvious factor associated with environmental deprivation: poverty. In the 2003 College Bound cohort of SAT test-takers, black students with family incomes between 80k-100k averaged 461 on the SAT-M and 468 on the SAT-V. White test takers with family incomes between 15-20k averaged 485 on the SAT-M and 488 on the SAT-V. By our colloquial understanding of what constitutes deprivation, the black students in a comfortably middle class income bracket are "better off", yet still score worse than poor whites.

    “the naive assumption that heritable traits cannot be changed via environmental mechanisms”

    Strawman!

    Let’s say I’m the son of the greatest right-handed pitcher in the history of Major League Baseball. Genetically, I’m a born righty, with a killer arm that will give me all the ability I’ll need to excel at baseball when I grow up should I train for it.

    Then, suddenly, at the age of 14, my environment conspires to cut off my right arm. Car accident, or whatever. Let’s further stipulate I lose my left arm, just in case I could’ve magically switched to it. Now I’ll never be a great pitcher like dad.

    Does anyone on earth believe this is impossible, because genes? No. Sorry, we’re not that stupid, Vox.

    Simpler thought exercise: you’re born to two mathematical geniuses. You get straight A’s throughout elementary school in math class. Everyone expects you to do well in junior high, too. Then you get shot in the head and die. Your genes didn’t kill you, but an environmental bullet did. Would Charles Murray naively think that’s impossible?

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  172. @Seth Largo
    Poe's Law certainly at work here, particularly in the third sentence. That sentence makes me think funny troll.

    funny troll

    You could be right — but for similar stuff from peer reviewed academia follow these:

    New Real Peer Review

    Amir Sariaslan

    https://twitter.com/AmirSariaslan/status/865263138450657280

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  173. @PoorGradStudent
    This was clearly a high effort piece by Turkheimer and Nesbitt. I wouldn't expect anyone to throughly debunk something with this level of sneaky rhetorical sophistication 5 hours after publication. I certainly couldn't begin to, particularly since I am not an expert. Little things jump out at me that bely bias and hostility on the part of the authors though:

    "Until you get to 5, none of the premises is completely incorrect.". This would be more accurately and neutrally stated as "Until you get to 4, all of the premises are unambiguously true and non-controversial".

    "These observations do not undermine the conclusion that intelligence is heritable, but rather the naive assumption that heritable traits cannot be changed via environmental mechanisms. (Murray flatly tells Harris that this is the case.)"

    I haven't listened to the podcast, and Turkheimer doesn't cite the point in the podcast when Murray "flatly tells Harris that this is the case". I suspect that Charles Murray understands that the heritability of intelligence, height, etc would be much lower in populations exposed to extreme deprivation, such as wartime famine conditions. Murray has discussed the Wilson effect before - that the heritability of IQ increases with age, and early childhood interventions can increase the IQ of young children. Murray is likely referring to the failure of intensive childhood interventions to produce results approaching middle class white norms among lower and middle class African American groups.

    "There is currently no reason at all to think that any significant portion of the IQ differences among socially defined racial groups is genetic in origin."

    There is very good reason. We have controlled for the most obvious factor associated with environmental deprivation: poverty. In the 2003 College Bound cohort of SAT test-takers, black students with family incomes between 80k-100k averaged 461 on the SAT-M and 468 on the SAT-V. White test takers with family incomes between 15-20k averaged 485 on the SAT-M and 488 on the SAT-V. By our colloquial understanding of what constitutes deprivation, the black students in a comfortably middle class income bracket are "better off", yet still score worse than poor whites.

    “socially defined racial groups”

    What other kind of racial groups are there? Even if they were defined scientifically, they’d still be socially defined. Because guess who does Science? Human beings, who have a tendency to interact socially with one another.

    How would these guys write the sports page? “The socially-defined Yankees topped the socially-defined Red Sox at the socially-defined Fenway Park one socially-defined day ago.”

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  174. What does this suggest about choosing a wife to be the mother of my future children?
    Women have lower mean IQ and a tighter dispersion.
    BTW I am a 2+ Sigma white man and I want very smart kids.

    Seems logical that I should find the smartest woman (Asian?) but really smart women tend to crazy and can be very difficult to live with

    Maybe we can get male/male genes combined in a test tube and raised in one of those artificial wombs?

    OMG, sounds like “Brave New World”!

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    • Replies: @guest
    Why not just clone yourself?

    Actually, you should follow custom and pick a wife based on prettiness. That used to work for our civilization. Ain't broke, don't fix it.
  175. “Who does have the rhetorical skills to…”

    No one. It would require Shakespeare x a million.

    Race Blindness is a multigenerational, international delusion. It’s more than fashionable; it’s an article of faith, defended militantly. We’ll require a paradigm shift like quantum mechanics. Something radically new.

    Maybe the coming race wars will do it. Or goodwhites losing all power.

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  176. @LemmusLemmus
    So, reading through this, it appears that the authors agree with Murray about most of the substance. Why do they give it such a different spin? Maybe because:

    "No reasonable person would be offended by the observation that African people have curlier hair than the Chinese, notwithstanding the possibility of some future environment in which it is no longer true. But we can recognize a contention that Chinese people are genetically predisposed to be better table tennis players than Africans as silly, and the contention that they are smarter than Africans as ugly, because it is a matter of ethical principle that individual and cultural accomplishment is not tied to the genes in the same way as the appearance of our hair."

    It is a matter of ethical principle. That's one of the authors, Turkheimer, ten years ago. Source: https://www.cato-unbound.org/2007/11/21/eric-turkheimer/race-iq

    That is a very revealing quote — Turkheimer’s view essentially is that one should avoid looking at the evidence regarding race and IQ since it is an unshakeable religious principal to believe there is no link! So all this nonsense about “junk science” is just his attempt at propagandizing for his religious principals. Very telling about what really motivates his nonsensical discussion of the scientific evidence.

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  177. There is currently no reason at all to think that any significant portion of the IQ differences among socially defined racial groups is genetic in origin

    .

    Steve calling this ‘silly’ takes measured response to extreme; it’s a bald faced Orwellian lie, right up there at the Stephen Jay Gould level. It’s not a mis statement or error, the author’s of the Vox piece know it’s a lie.

    This is what we are dealing with.

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  178. There is currently no reason at all to think that any significant portion of the IQ differences among socially defined racial groups is genetic in origin.

    I would be eager to see the results of a study on the IQ of transracial (“racial non-conforming”?) people.

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    • Replies: @guest
    According to the logic set forth by these authors, everyone is race queer.
  179. @Whitehall
    What does this suggest about choosing a wife to be the mother of my future children?
    Women have lower mean IQ and a tighter dispersion.
    BTW I am a 2+ Sigma white man and I want very smart kids.

    Seems logical that I should find the smartest woman (Asian?) but really smart women tend to crazy and can be very difficult to live with

    Maybe we can get male/male genes combined in a test tube and raised in one of those artificial wombs?

    OMG, sounds like "Brave New World"!

    Why not just clone yourself?

    Actually, you should follow custom and pick a wife based on prettiness. That used to work for our civilization. Ain’t broke, don’t fix it.

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    • Replies: @Whitehall
    Taking a pretty wife would be the easiest and most pleasant resolution.

    I'll take it!

  180. @Reginald Maplethorp

    There is currently no reason at all to think that any significant portion of the IQ differences among socially defined racial groups is genetic in origin.
     
    I would be eager to see the results of a study on the IQ of transracial ("racial non-conforming"?) people.

    According to the logic set forth by these authors, everyone is race queer.

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  181. @utu
    I did not read Gould's Mismeasure of Man, so I do not know what points he made. But I can give my opinion about g. I suspect Gould would have agreed with me.

    g is mathematically trivial

    Any nonnegative symmetric matrix can be decomposed into principal components by some method. Different methods yield different results. One of this component will have larger loadings than any other component on average. Arriving at g from the covariance matrix which from its definition is nonnegative and symmetric is a mathematical necessity. Just like N different fractions have a lowest common denominator so N mutually correlated variables (test results) will produce g (by some method) that has "advertised" properties. For example you can take 60 question Raven matrix test and haphazardly divide into four 15 question subtests. You will obtain 4x4 covariance matrix that you can decompose and obtain g that most likely, if you have sufficient large sample of tested participants, will have similar loadings for each subtest. Would such a g have some meaning and tell you anything about some hidden intelligence factor that you have just revealed? No, it would not. Jut like finding that a common denominator of 1/2, 1/7 and 1/8 is 56. What is the meaning of 56?

    g interpretation can be arbitrary

    Mathematically g for each method with which it can be derived has (or at least should have) strict mathematical definition. All other features and qualities attributed to g outside of its mathematical definition are arbitrary and are detached from g's definition; they can't be proven or disproven by one's ability to derive it mathematically. This mathematical g serves as pretext to utter statements about these features and qualities that are actually unprovable and have nothing to do with the inevitable existence of the mathematical g. Very often, frequently observed on unz.com pages, the concept of g and its mathematical existence is invoked as a purely rhetorical device to nobilitate the shoddy nature and lack of theoretical foundations of the IQ research. This argument works on mathematically unsavvy.

    g non-uniqueness

    g can be derived by different methods. Each method produces different g. The covariance matrix can be decomposed by means of eigenvectors which are orthogonal. Then g is associated with the eigenvector with greatest eigenvalue. This decomposition is unique and it is obtained with the principal component analysis (PCA). However one can combine the eigenvectors (by rotating them) and obtain a new set of also orthogonal vectors that are no longer eigenvectors. The orthogonality is a very important criterion for decomposition because it implies statistical independence among factors but by itself this orthogonality criterion does not guarantee the uniqueness of g. By doing so a new g can be defined that has a different distribution of loadings. Loading can be redistributed pretty much anyway one wants because the rotations can be arbitrary. When Spearman began his work mathematical tools to do PCA did not exist. Even if they did finding eigenvectors of large matrices w/o computers would be very cumbersome. He a priori postulated the existence of just one g so he defined a simpler less complex problem that guaranteed finding jus one g. He also looked for the second factor, the s-factor. These two factors were to account for the maximum of variance. This is how factor analysis (FA) was born. Invented by a non mathematician. Then once he had the two factors he still tweaked them by rotating them. He was using various ad hoc criteria's to decide on the angle of rotation. In 1950s in order to salvage the FA (there were criticisms on its arbitrariness) various mathematical criteria and algorithms were developed that invoked vectors rotations as well as non-orthogonal rotations. Nowadays FA starts with PCA when the dominant vectors are found and then they are tweaked and there are different tweaking methods. Each will produce different g. Thus g is not unique. Different criteria produce different g. One set of data may yield different g's depending which method is used. I presume that researchers following Jensen's work through the process of convergence eventually agreed which method to use so their results that suppose to reinforce each other (this is a social group with common interests) are consistent.

    There is also aspect of empirical non-uniqueness. Different batteries of subtest produce different g's that are mutually correlated but not identical. This is one of the reason why no scale of g was ever created. That's why g unlike IQ is not used to label the test subjects. You never hear that you need to have at least g=0.7 to go to college or what is Asian g as opposed to African g, right? Nobody knows if g=0.7 is good or bad because no scale was created nor agreed upon. So where does g is used? In research papers, where it is either argued by faction A that we showed that we have one g or by faction B that these two g's are not really the same g or by faction C that one g is not enough and we need to look at s-factor as well. Pointless and meaningless efforts.

    The bottom line is that most what you will hear about g is hyped up. It is just a rhetorical device. Nothing else. But once you understand the mathematics behind it you see it is a trivial concept that is also inevitable.

    I suspect that Gould's argument about g were correct though I will have to read him.

    Factor analysis, or “g” as you term it, is not only used in intelligence research, it is used in engineering, biology, chemistry, physics, finance, health research, marketing, etc. etc. So if you have a new mathematical proof that factor analysis is mathematically invalid, you need to explain it carefully to tens of thousand of researchers using “g” successfully in hundreds of thousands of applications over the last fifty years. Good luck with that.

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    • Replies: @candid_observer
    There is the further quite important point that g, in the context of cognitive ability, has generally been regarded as reflecting a biological reality, namely, something akin to processing speeds in a CPU. Certainly Jensen, its champion, saw g as arising from an aspect of brain structure or mechanism.

    Whether g might be said to exist in the abstract, without any particular biological underpinning, is one question. But insofar as it represents a testable hypothesis about the organization of our brains, it certainly has scientific meaning.
  182. @guest
    Why not just clone yourself?

    Actually, you should follow custom and pick a wife based on prettiness. That used to work for our civilization. Ain't broke, don't fix it.

    Taking a pretty wife would be the easiest and most pleasant resolution.

    I’ll take it!

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  183. @Luke Lea
    “Had I but serv'd my God with half the zeal I serv'd my king, he would not in mine age have left me naked to mine." For "God" substitute "science" and for "king" substitute "the good opinion of my friends and colleagues." Today's liberals are completely unprepared to defend the moral axiom on which this nation was founded -- I mean the axiom "that all men are created equal" -- in the face of the findings of contemporary population genetics.

    This much is clear: "equality of opportunity" and "equality under the law" are not enough by themselves if the goal is a society in which everyone's happiness is equally important (which is the real nub of the issue in my opinion). At a bare minimum it means we ought to oppose public policies that are a windfall to the already most highly favored among us, even as they disproportionately harm the interests of the least-well-endowed and most vulnerable segments of the working population, as is certainly the case with our country's current third-world trade and immigration policies.

    But beyond that it means we ought to aim for a society in which anyone who works hard and plays by the rules can reasonably expect to lead a rich and fulfilling life, no matter if they are of only average or below-average intelligence. I've spent my life trying to imagine such a society:

    https://docs.google.com/document/d/13G0TkQwFZ9tP-6Oax64Fj8wIuh6pxQHmvktAQFieiUY/edit?usp=sharing

    One side benefit of such a society, I suspect, is that there would be a lot less tension between the races than there is now.

    “we ought to aim for a society in which anyone who works hard and plays by the rules can reasonably expect to lead a rich and fulfilling life, no matter if they are of only average or below-average intelligence”

    You’re describing Britain and most of the USA in 1957. We had that, and it’s been deliberately undermined and wrecked.

    Commenter Kit is obviously an idiot (when cishet white men had all the power in the US, they removed Jim Crow and gave women the vote long before that) but he makes one reasonable point.

    “humans treat those they perceive as inferior like shit, and will use all the power of the government to enforce that shit-state”

    Who is more inferior in the eyes of our elite than cishet white males? You can literally celebrate their slaughter in popular movies.

    When I was taught UK history, one question never seemed to be raised either by teachers or students – why did ordinary people put up with it, with serfdom, feudalism, with your life being in the power of the big house, right up to Victorian times? Perhaps the question didn’t need answering, we saw what happened to the Rising of the North under William I, Peasants Revolt, to the Pilgrimage of Grace, right down to the trades unionists transported to Australia. The sword, rope, or dungeon, your wife and children homeless, starving and/or worse.

    Those with power will use that power to maintain their position. The justification will never be explicit, then it was “they are defying God’s will”, “subverting the ordained order of society”, “stirring up hatred and envy” – that latter pretty close to today’s UK “race relations” laws.

    The post-war US and UK settlement, as Mark Steyn observed, is historically highly unusual and precious – and it’s vanishing fast.

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  184. Here is an interesting AP story on interracial marriage in the US. One in Six marriages are now interracial with black men and Asian women most likely to marry outside their race.

    http://www.baynews9.com/content/news/baynews9/news/article.html/content/news/articles/ap/2017/05/18/1_in_6_newlyweds_spouse_is_of_different_race_or_ethnicity.html

    Of course marriage itself is becoming a class issue so the degree to which it is interracial and what the race mixture is will tell the tale so while a negro marrying a low IQ Mexican is one thing while a high IQ Asian marrying a high IQ white another. Americans may lose their racial identity but Murray’s concern of a cognitive elite may only accelerate as people self segregate by IQ rather than race.

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  185. Steve, sorry my comment thinking Murray is a hypocrite and not some holy greatest thinker evar sent you to the fainting couch.

    He should have gotten caught by the crowd.

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  186. @John Chard
    Ackshually, Caplan is arguing that the primary difference between rich and poor countries is institutions, not geography ("magic dirt.") (And he's quite right.)

    Steve and iSteve commenters have a tendency to mock anyone who believes in anything other than 100% genetic determinism as believing in magic dirt. But the evidence is pretty clear that institutions have an effect over and above (real and important) genetic and cultural differences.

    Firstly, because it's always less time consuming to show that an argument proves too much than to show that it's wrong, consider that "magic dirt" proves too much: if true, there would be no reason for anyone to move from one country to another. Mexicans wouldn't gain any income from moving to America, Poles wouldn't gain any labor market income from moving to the UK, etc. because they would have the same allegedly definitive ancestry. I guess you can argue that people would move just to collect generous welfare benefits produced by higher achieving groups, but at least in America the Hispanic labor force participation rate is higher than that of any other ethnic group (I presume due to its lower median age.) It's a lot easier to make a living and raise a family by working a low wage job and collecting government benefits than just by collecting government benefits. And in the 19th century, large numbers of people immigrated to a pre-welfare state US. And institutions mattered a lot there--- southern Italians and eastern European Jews both did a lot better under well organized Anglo-Saxon capitalism than they'd done in their countries of origin.

    Secondly, because countries of people of the same ancestry who have different institutions imposed on them can have wildly different economic outcomes. The obvious and strongest examples being the post-WW2 divisions of Korea and Germany between capitalism and communism. Again, if ancestry is the only thing that matters, and anyone who believes otherwise is just a believer in magic dirt/tragic dirt, there should be no difference between North and South Korea.

    Thirdly, consider that African-Americans have much, much higher per capita income (~$23,000) than all Afro-Caribbean and Sub-Saharan African countries. The white admixture of 20% explains a bit of this, but probably not all that much. The difference between Euro-Americans and African-Americans in terms of income isn't due to institutions; but the difference between African-Americans and Haitians or Congolese obviously at least somewhat is.

    Finally, in terms of actual empirical evidence, look at Clemens', Pritchett's and Montenegro's 2009 paper on the "place premium". They demonstrate that for observably identical individual workers from less developed countries, there are massive income gains from moving to a first world country. MAGIC DIRT! MAGIC DIRT! MAGIC DIRT! (Just saying "magic dirt" is notanargument.jpg.)

    The killer “institutions > genes” factoid is China under the Great Leap Forward or the Cultural Revolution, and China today.

    Same people, same genes.

    (China was still putting satellites in orbit under Mao, just as North Korea is allegedly producing ICBMs today).

    On the other hand, that only ‘really’ shows bad institutions can be stronger than high-IQ genes. Britain left the former Rhodesia and Singapore with a reasonable legal system, yet Zimbabwe suffered while Singapore prospered.

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    • Replies: @Daniel Chieh
    I think like most things, its some combination of genetic heritage and institutional environmental/landscape. And of course, if institutions are downstream from politics, politics is downstream from culture, then culture is downstream of genetics.

    There are some exceptions such as colonial governments, where that link is broken. But in the end, it does seem like they tend to acquire the flavor of the majority population nonetheless: i.e. the apartheid government in South Africa was still more rent-seeking and corrupt than equivalents in Europe. Yet its still a vast, vast step above its successor, which is in the process of going full Zimbabwe.

    , @Corvinus
    "On the other hand, that only ‘really’ shows bad institutions can be stronger than high-IQ genes. Britain left the former Rhodesia and Singapore with a reasonable legal system, yet Zimbabwe suffered while Singapore prospered."

    Economic prosperity resulted not in the legal system, but of how the various parts of the British Empire ranked in terms of financial significance. Singapore was a major commercial hub and center for British military operations. It had immense strategic importance. Merchant houses were set up here by the Chinese, Arabs, Jewish, Armenians, and Indians (dot). Furthermore, Singapore had enjoyed political stability that contributed to its growth in wealth. On the other hand, Rhodesia served as a source for vital minerals for the British. It experience far greater political turmoil, with old tribal hostilities kept in check by the British army remerging and local populations being subjected to perpetual substandard treatment.

  187. @eah
    You think Vox is bad -- this reads like parody, but I don't think it is:

    From the American Mathematical Society (AMS) 'inclusion/exclusion' blog -- Get Out The Way

    If you are a white cis man (meaning you identify as male and you were assigned male at birth) you almost certainly should resign from your position of power. That’s right, please quit.

    An excerpt from one of the comments:

    We need to decouple success in mathematics from IQ. IQ is a social construct that cishet white men devised that defines “intelligence” on the basis of culture. Sadly, there is a direct correlation between high IQ and “earning” a PhD in a STEM discipline, which is all too reflective of how white cishet men have designed disciplinary concepts to reinforce their own power structures...It is fundamentally unfair and marginalizing for IQ tests and mathematics curriculum to be designed around the same white supremacist, cisheteronormative standards, thus marginalizing women of color. What we need isn’t just “fair hiring;” we need a radical reconceptualization of mathematics in a decolonizing framework.

    Read the whole thing there.

    Crackpot. Ranting about not just race and gender but about “cis”. Not even “cishet”.

    Meaning, you gays are just part of the patriarchy if you’re “cis.”

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  188. @EriK
    Slightly OT, I used to laugh every time Taranto would refer to Vox as a young adult site in his Best of the Web column.

    Taranto is greatly missed by this reader.

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  189. I have raised this issue with a couple of conventionally liberal friends who I thought might be capable of discussing it without going into full hysteria mode. Their response was more or less, “Well, there may be differences in average IQs among racial groups, but if this is the case, it is such provocative information that it should be kept hidden.”

    The problem with this appproach — the pursuit of scientific knowledge aside — is that there is a default position in America that differences in performance and outcome among races — well actually, between black and white Americans; other races don’t count so much — are the result of racism and deprivation, or perhaps legacy effects of racism and deprivation. Therefore, these differences are correctable over time, and since they result from political, legal, and economic inequity, we are obliged to do everything possible to correct them, even if the results we seek are not soon forthcoming.

    This, in essence, is the socially acceptable starting point for any discussion of race-based differences in levels of education or income, as well as incarceration rates, illegitimacy rates (if this is even still categorized as a problem), mortality and morbidity rates, and so forth. Again, this principally applies to black-white differences. No one is scandalized to learn that Asian Americans earn more on average that White Americans, even if the comparison is limited to college graduates.

    One way to finesse this problem would be for the default position to shift toward the following: the factors that lead to “success” are so multifarious and complex in their interactions that we can’t really disentangle why certain groups seem to do better at certain things. One might go on to concede that “success” itself is highly subjective, and has to do ultimately with the types of lives that people wish to lead. A lot of people really don’t want to become computer programmers, insurance actuaries, accountants, or any one of other undramatic but economically and socially useful professions. It’s easy to make fun of the zillions of young black aspiring rappers, but I doubt that many of these kids wish they could become successful branch managers of a bank, if only the white man would stop holding them down. They want to be rappers.

    So long as our society’s default position presumes that black underachievement in various areas is and must be the result of white prejudice, institutional racism, a host of micro-aggressions, and a catalogue of past injustices, then in each case the culpable party will be white people, or at the least, the “dominant culture,” and it is those people and that culture which will have to be “fixed” in order for justice to prevail, which is of course the actual default position. That’s also why media and political elites are fighting so hard to vilify any other interpretation of differences in outcomes among races.

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    • Replies: @Pericles
    It's like Plato's Noble Lie except not used for benign purposes.
    , @Desiderius

    So long as our society’s default position presumes that black underachievement in various areas is and must be the result of white prejudice, institutional racism, a host of micro-aggressions, and a catalogue of past injustices, then in each case the culpable party will be white people, or at the least, the “dominant culture,” and it is those people and that culture which will have to be “fixed” in order for justice to prevail, which is of course the actual default position. That’s also why media and political elites are fighting so hard to vilify any other interpretation of differences in outcomes among races.
     
    "Our" kimosabe?

    Need to check your privilege, dude. Our society doesn't believe those things. Their society does. They're freaking out because their society isn't what they were sold/told it would be. If they want to be one society, they've got to interrogate those specific beliefs.
    , @dc.sunsets

    A lot of people really don’t want to become computer programmers, insurance actuaries, accountants, or any one of other undramatic but economically and socially useful professions.
     
    But they all seem to expect the high lifestyles of those doing so.

    It’s easy to make fun of the zillions of young black aspiring rappers, but I doubt that many of these kids wish they could become successful branch managers of a bank, if only the white man would stop holding them down. They want to be rappers.
     
    They want to be rappers who drive Escalades, wear $20,000 worth of gold chains and can buy anything they see The Rich And Famous have on TV.

    That's the problem. A society of permanent adolescents addicted to living in the Perpetual Now is not a stable entity.
  190. @Anonymous Nephew
    The killer "institutions > genes" factoid is China under the Great Leap Forward or the Cultural Revolution, and China today.

    Same people, same genes.

    (China was still putting satellites in orbit under Mao, just as North Korea is allegedly producing ICBMs today).

    On the other hand, that only 'really' shows bad institutions can be stronger than high-IQ genes. Britain left the former Rhodesia and Singapore with a reasonable legal system, yet Zimbabwe suffered while Singapore prospered.

    I think like most things, its some combination of genetic heritage and institutional environmental/landscape. And of course, if institutions are downstream from politics, politics is downstream from culture, then culture is downstream of genetics.

    There are some exceptions such as colonial governments, where that link is broken. But in the end, it does seem like they tend to acquire the flavor of the majority population nonetheless: i.e. the apartheid government in South Africa was still more rent-seeking and corrupt than equivalents in Europe. Yet its still a vast, vast step above its successor, which is in the process of going full Zimbabwe.

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  191. @FactsAreImportant
    OT, Bryan Caplan (almost literally) argues in favor of "magic dirt."

    Geography is Policy

    ... The harsh reality is that geography has a huge effect on countries' economic success. ... Social scientists who accept the power of geography tend to get pretty pessimistic about development. If poor countries adopted the institutions and policies of rich countries, they still wouldn't do very well. ... And that's where the geo-centric economists are completely wrong.

    Contrary to their own self-image, their view is radically optimistic. Consider the extreme scenario where geography is the sole determinant of national prosperity. Is there anything mankind could do to swiftly raise per-capita GDP? Absolutely: Move people from poor countries to rich countries. Is that the kind of thing that policy can change? Again, absolutely: Legalize movement from poor countries to rich countries. How much would that accomplish? Given the draconian regulations now on the books, such deregulation would swiftly transform the world.

    In the real world, of course, geography isn't the sole global problem, so deregulating migration isn't a full-blown panacea for global ills. But if Sachs is remotely right, this deregulation is the closest thing to a panacea we've got. Bad geography only retards human progress insofar as humans remain in locations with bad geography. And once it's legal, humans will vacate the bad areas on a massive scale.

     

    http://econlog.econlib.org/archives/2017/05/geography_is_po.html

    Bad geography only retards human progress insofar as humans remain in locations with bad geography. And once it’s legal, humans will vacate the bad areas on a massive scale.

    He seems 100% confident that such movement will become legal.

    Scary.

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  192. @Abe

    Obama would much rather munch ice cream on Martha’s Vineyard
     
    So let's see- $50 million for dual autobiographies with his wife. $400k for a single 90 minute speech. And room & board on Richard Branson's island and David Geffen's yacht (did Dave entertain the Obamas with early, never-before-heard outtakes of ONE IN A MILLION?) Puppet is getting some nice new golden strings!

    Are the shareholders of these huge companies really on board with splashing out murky payola to various politicians and officials, over and over? Let’s put it to a vote on the next shareholder meetings. It’s time for an Ethical Banking initiative.

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  193. @ricpic
    Given liberal hysteria on the question of racial IQ differences why not start ignoring liberals rather than continuing to placate them?

    Because they dominate huge areas of our society: media, education, entertainment. These folks are very powerful. They will steamroll us, if we don’t keep fighting back.

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  194. @Reg Cæsar

    The Cape of South Africa has a very pleasant climate. I don’t see why a great civilization could not have arisen there.
     
    On the other hand, Cleveland Amory's father had a point with "Nothing good ever came out of a warm climate." (Spoken while little Cleveland was standing, shivering, in freezing cold Boston beach water.)

    Descartes was on the other hand invited by Queen Christina to Stockholm, where he quickly died in February from pneumonia. Wikipedia notes that “the winter seems to have been mild”.

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    • Replies: @Reg Cæsar

    Descartes was on the other hand invited by Queen Christina to Stockholm, where he quickly died in February from pneumonia. Wikipedia notes that “the winter seems to have been mild”
     
    That wouldn't have been the one Swedish February with thirty days, would it?

    Nah. Wrong century, I think. The Swedes held off too long on accepting that Papist Gregorian calendar.
  195. anon says:     Show CommentNext New Comment
    @Vinteuil
    "...she wrote the smart and reasonable bits of the Vox piece and then acquiesced in the two old commie dudes adding in all the insults, obfuscations and nonsense..."

    So she's a coward, and a climber?

    I think she’s a mother with young children in the early stages of her career.

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