Vox Day recently disputed the notion that ZOG is a result of high Jewish IQ. In so doing, he’s drawing swords with the likes of Gregory Cochran, Charles Murray, and Stephen Pinker. To atrociously mix metaphors, that prices me way out of the cognitive market, so I won’t comment on the merits or demerits of Vox’s assertion.
What I will do is take a look at what light the GSS can shed on the question. The following graph shows mean IQ estimates by selected demographics computed by converting the mean wordsum score among native-born non-Hispanic whites to 100 and assuming a standard deviation of 15 (N = 8,896):
To avoid language fluency issues, results are restricted to respondents who were born in the US. For contemporary relevance, all data is from the year 2000 onward.
One big issue with using wordsum as an IQ proxy–the two positively correlate at .71–is that because the vocabulary quiz only contains 10 questions, there is a converted IQ ceiling of 130, exactly two standard deviations above the white mean. Respondents who ace it all get recorded as having IQs of 130. While 4.2% of gentile whites score 10 out of 10, 12.1% of Jews do. In statistical terms, the first Pearson coefficient of skewness for gentile whites is -.20. For Jews it is -.66.
This artificially pulls the mean of high scoring group down. If the artificial ceiling was removed, the Jewish mean would likely increase by a couple of points.
The problem theoretically exists on the left side of the distribution, too, but it’s of far lesser consequence because a wordsum score of zero converts to an IQ of 46.2. The number of respondents with IQs under 50 who are administered the survey must be negligible. It’s unlikely they’d even be capable of completing it.
Another big issue is that estimating IQ in this way focuses entirely on verbal IQ at the expense of visuo-spatial IQ. Asians in the US tend to have modestly higher IQs than whites on account of a small visuo-spatial advantage over whites while whites enjoy a smaller advantage over Asians on verbal measures of IQ. Hispanics and American Indians also do better on visuo-spatial side of IQ tests than on the verbal side. Blacks and Jews, in contrast, do better on verbal than on the visuo-spatial.
Consequently, this method presumably modestly overstates black and Jewish IQ while modestly understating Asian, Hispanic, and American Indian IQ.
The GSS doesn’t inquire about whether or not Jews are Ashkenazi, but it does ask about race. Among Jews who self-identify racially as white and so who are presumably Ashkenazi, mean IQ is 108.9. Among non-white Jews, mean IQ is 96.5.
Finally, Jewishness is inquired about in a religious rather than an ethnic context in the GSS. Some portion of ethnic Jews identify as having no religion and thus are not included in the Jewish results but are instead included in the Gentile white results. The Jewish-Gentile gap reported here is thus likely modestly understated as a result.
Parenthetically, here are the ten wordsum items. If you’re reading this blog there’s a good chance you’d score a perfect 10 out of 10. Forget the 2% being the cognitive elite–we outperform the vast majority of (((them))). We are the true cognitive elite!
GSS variables used: WORDSUM, BORN(1), RELIG(1-2,4-13)(3), RACECEN1(1)(2)(3)(4-10), HISPANIC(1)(2-50), PARTYID(0-1)(2-4)(5-6)(7), CLASS, YEAR(2000-2016)