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Here’s the New York Times’ #3 article on its online frontpage:

Cash Aid to Poor Mothers Increases Brain Activity in Babies, Study Finds

The research could have policy implications as President Biden pushes to revive his proposal to expand the child tax credit.

The differences in brain activity were modest, and it remains to be seen if changes in brain patterns will translate to higher skills.

By Jason DeParle
Jan. 24, 2022

WASHINGTON — A study that provided poor mothers with cash stipends for the first year of their children’s lives appears to have changed the babies’ brain activity in ways associated with stronger cognitive development, a finding with potential implications for safety net policy.

The differences were modest — researchers likened them in statistical magnitude to moving to the 75th position in a line of 100 from the 81st

I.e., from the 19th to 25th percentile.

— and it remains to be seen if changes in brain patterns will translate to higher skills, as other research offers reason to expect.

Still, evidence that a single year of subsidies could alter something as profound as brain functioning highlights the role that money may play in child development and comes as President Biden is pushing for a much larger program of subsidies for families with children.

“This is a big scientific finding,” said Martha J. Farah, a neuroscientist at the University of Pennsylvania, who conducted a review of the study for the Proceedings of the National Academies of Sciences, where it was published on Monday. “It’s proof that just giving the families more money, even a modest amount of more money, leads to better brain development.”

Another researcher, Charles A. Nelson III of Harvard, reacted more cautiously, noting the full effect of the payments — \$333 a month — would not be clear until the children took cognitive tests. While the brain patterns documented in the study are often associated with higher cognitive skills, he said, that is not always the case.

… Evidence abounds that poor children on average start school with weaker cognitive skills, and neuroscientists have shown that the differences extend to brain structure and function. But it has not been clear if those differences come directly from the shortage of money or from related factors like parental education or neighborhood influences.

It could be something that happens in the 8 months and 29 days before birth. But not a day sooner!

The study released on Monday offers evidence that poverty itself holds children back from their earliest moments.

“This is the first study to show that money, in and of itself, has a causal impact on brain development,” said Dr. Kimberly G. Noble, a physician and neuroscientist at Teachers College, Columbia University, who helped lead the study.

Dr. Noble and colleagues from six universities recruited a thousand mother-infant pairs within days of the babies’ birth and randomly divided the families into two groups. One group received a nominal \$20 a month and another received \$333.

Using electroencephalograms, or EEG tests, to evaluate the children at age 1, the researchers found that those in the high-cash group had more of the fast brain activity other research has linked to cognitive development than those in the low-cash group. The differences were statistically significant by most, but not all, measures and were greatest in parts of the brain most associated with cognitive advancement.

I’ll post below the researchers’ rather tortured efforts to reach statistical significance:

… While the size of the recorded differences are modest (about a fifth of a standard deviation), the researchers said they were comparable to those produced by the average school experiment, like giving children tutors. While those services are often hard to administer, they added, cash can be distributed on a mass scale.

A general pattern found in studies over the last 60 years is that it’s not too hard to juice results for very young children, but hard to have much long-term impact after puberty.

From the actual study:

In the case of absolute power, the high-cash gift group showed higher power in the three mid- to high-frequency bands (alpha, beta, and gamma) but not in the low-frequency theta-band (top rows of Table 2). When ranked by effect sizes, group differences in EEG power in the beta-band were largest (effect size = 0.26, beta = 0.414, P = 0.02, for the model with covariates and site fixed effects), followed by the gamma-band (effect size = 0.23, beta = 0.221, P = 0.04). Both P levels were below the 0.05 threshold when treated as independent measures, but not after Westfall–Young (44) multiple-testing adjustments. Group power differences in the alpha-band (effect size = 0.17, beta = 0.720, P = 0.07) were smaller and at the margins of statistical significance. Small and statistically nonsignificant differences in absolute power were found in the theta-band (effect size = 0.02, beta = 0.396, P = 0.83). (See SI Appendix, SI5 for a similar pattern in weighted analyses that adjust for demographic differences between the n = 435 EEG sample and the n = 931 full sample of BFY mother/infant dyads interviewed at age 1.)

Differences in relative power were qualitatively similar but uniformly smaller than those observed for absolute power, with the high-cash gift group showing greater mid- to high-frequency relative power in the alpha-, beta-, and gamma-bands. These differences did not reach conventional levels of statistical significance (bottom rows of Table 2; for a more complete discussion of absolute and relative power, see SI Appendix, SI3). In contrast, relative theta-power was greater in the low-cash gift group with an effect size of 0.21, with the difference at the margins of statistical significance (SI Appendix, SI4). …

Given our hypotheses of positive differences across all mid- to high-frequency portions of the power spectrum, we aggregated power across all three of our preregistered mid- to high-frequency power bands. Such a summary index approach is a commonly used data-reduction technique in the social sciences (45, 46), and serves as a post hoc complement to our preregistered Westfall–Young multiple comparison adjustment.

In other words, they didn’t think of this statistical ploy when they pre-registered their study. (I’m actually sympathetic to researchers who come up with new ideas when they finally get their hands on the real results, but pre-registration purists are not.)

While this approach ignores the biological and functional significance of the EEG bands, it has the benefit of enabling us to statistically estimate ITT differences for a single aggregated mid- to high-frequency index score (SI Appendix, SI7). Consistent with our band-based results, we find that the infants in the high-cash gift group had more mid- to high-frequency band absolute power than infants in the low-cash gift group (effect size = 0.25, beta = 13.35, P = 0.02) (SI Appendix, Table SI7.1). Thus, the direction and approximate size of intervention effects on mid- to high-frequency absolute power are similar when power is analyzed in preregistered bands, disaggregated into single-hertz bins, examined within regions or aggregated across bands.

I look forward to the press conference at which Joe and Kamala try to explain this study.

 
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  1. ‘“This is a big scientific finding,” said Martha J. Farah, a neuroscientist at the University of Pennsylvania, who conducted a review of the study for the Proceedings of the National Academies of Sciences, where it was published on Monday. “It’s proof that just giving the families more money, even a modest amount of more money, leads to better brain development.”

    Of course. This is why nineteenth-century Jews in the shetl were dumb as posts, while at the same time well-paid railroad workers in the United States were dreaming up major advances in physics in their off time. Later, in the 1960s, it was noted that relatively affluent American blacks had average IQ’s at least forty points higher than those of Mao’s long-suffering peasantry.

    I’m surprised it took this long to notice the obvious. Anyone comparing the boat people to the children of well-paid black government workers could have seen the direct correlation between poverty and mental retardation. I believe Art Jensen pointed out this relationship forty years ago.

    • Thanks: HammerJack, Bill
    • Replies: @ic1000
  2. IdCov says:

    It’s easier to print money out of thin air than to print IQ out of thin air.

    • Agree: Buffalo Joe
    • Replies: @pyrrhus
  3. Abolish school taxes and middle class couples will be able to pay themselves \$333 per month. It might even prompt them to have a baby to spend it on. In any case, this is just another piece of crappy, tax funded “research” into why bigger government is a good idea. Naturally, the authors affirm that they’re not the least bit conflicted.

    • Replies: @HammerJack
    , @Ian Smith
  4. While searching relentlessly for the cash-subsidy-related cognitive ability Flea in their data, the researchers need to do their absolute utmost to ensure that they do not mention the African-ancestry-related cognitive ability Elephant in the data.

    • Replies: @Prester John
  5. Maybe the baby’s brain just registered stimulation from hearing more talking — that of Dad, having heard Mom has extra cash, paying a rare visit.

  6. I’ve always said that the solution to all of our problems is to just give everyone eleventy billion dollars, and then we’ll all be so smart that we can just fix any old problem that comes along.

    “This is the first study to show that money, in and of itself, has a causal impact on brain development,” said Dr. Kimberly G. Noble, a physician and neuroscientist at Teachers College, Columbia University, who helped lead the study.

    She added: “My study, which I helped lead, is like the most amazing and pioneering study ever, and only the misogynistic MEN OF UNZ would dare try to poke holes in it.”

  7. J.Ross says:

    Is this limited hangout a partial return to sanity (in the face of universal policy failure, cratering polls, and disastrous ratings), or is this like the one-in-twenty-five NPR stories that acidentally tell some truth?
    ———

    [MORE]

    OT WHEN YOU RECYCLE YOU MAKE XI HAPPY
    The Journal is starting a series on how green investing is bull&#\$%. Takeaway line:

    Sadly, selling off assets or shares by itself does nothing to save the planet, because someone else bought them. Just as much oil and coal is dug up and burned as before, under different ownership.

    Conspiracy theorist cognitive leap: Who? The Chinese? Was this a way for thoroughly dirty Chinese industrialization to strengthen, continuing to improve the Chinese standard of living while diminishing the Americans standard of living? Possible confirmation: that’s exactly what the Paris climate accords, and what the Obama/Biden war on American coal was about. Problem with proving it: there has been an explosion in not secret but unreported money. From the same paragraph as the last quote:

    And there are plenty of people out there to buy the assets, because never before in history has there been so much private capital operating without the public reporting requirements brought by stock markets.

    We knew our ruling elite sold us out to Beijing, and try to distract us by demonizing Russia (and by calling people Nazis, virgins, or Russians), but there are still people out there who believe in environmentalism. We have to show people real conservation while mercilessly attacking green scams.

    https://www.wsj.com/articles/why-the-sustainable-investment-craze-is-flawed

    • Agree: bomag
    • Replies: @SunBakedSuburb
  8. Anonymous[423] • Disclaimer says:

    As most major liberal schemes go, this one packs a significant evil social punch, since it reentrenches the white-knuckled grip in black culture of women having babies sans the father.

    The especially evil aspect of this is, should their fundamental theory hold together, then the state would be ensuring that common black narcissists will have a little bit more brain power to more effectively manipulate the shills, dupes and “dum-azz muthfuka’s” they find surrounding them, and they’ll be a little bit harder for the police to catch, and DA’s to prosecute.

    And as long as they’re not behind bars, they can still vote democrat. Although the Dems are currently working feverishly to eliminate that long-standing negative variable from American Black life as I type.

    Conclusion: the current strain of progressive liberal democrats are fundamentally evil. Evil never arrives to force you. True evil always arrives to help you when you think you need it most. It preys on the weak, the weak-minded, and… the power mad. See San Francisco: the Devil’s Petri Dish.

  9. J.Ross says:

    So, what they’re saying is, by carefully shredding the inflationary bidenbucks and then assiduously working the dollar shavings into loamy soil, we can actually enchant our own magic dirt!
    ———-
    Is there one case in history ever where the Democrat solution was not to spend more money?

    • Thanks: Old Prude, Hangnail Hans
    • Replies: @James J O'Meara
  10. Would the children get the same benefit if the mothers made extra money from selling looted items?

  11. @Abolish_public_education

    Abolish school taxes and middle class couples will be able to pay themselves \$333 per month.

    Where is this bargain basement and is it even remotely livable? In the metro I know best, a middle-class house costs about $15k/yr in r.e. tax alone.

  12. If this were true, then shouldn’t we be able to expect that IQ scores will go up for infants born to poor parents after March 2020, because of all the COVID relief money and extra child tax credit money?

    But, COVID money aside, don’t poor mothers already get WAY more than \$333 worth of benefits from current welfare schemes (food stamps, Section 8, etc.)? Is Dr. Noble saying we must give out only cash and not other benefits? Then what about the programs that already give actual cash to poor mothers, such as TANF, the earned income tax credit, and the child tax credit?

    So all those benefits and cash DON’T improve cognitive function for kids at all, but somehow this professor’s extra \$333/month magically does?

    Forget magic dirt being the solution to the achievement gap, Professor Noble has a magic checkbook–we just need her to sign all the checks going out, and the Gap will be closed in no time!

  13. @International Jew

    The scary thing is, your theory is probably correct, IJ!

    • LOL: Prester John
  14. Polistra says:
    @Pahrump Coyote

    Professor Noble has a magic checkbook–we just need her to sign all the checks going out, and the Gap will be closed in no time!

    True dat! They be shopping at Nordstrom and Saks from now on.

  15. In California, schools suck up ~38% of property taxes, plus whatever special school taxes that voters impose on their neighbors, e.g. bonds. \$15K is a little more than what a new owner, of my ex- Bay Area modest home, would be paying (and a lot more than I’m paying in my rural, livable abode).

    \$333/m = ~4,000 per year = \$10,500 in r.e. taxes = \$1M home. About average for Alameda County.

    • Replies: @Ian Smith
  16. Escher says:

    The poor baby probably got dropped on its head or otherwise mishandled less if the mother had the money for her daily fix.

    • Replies: @Achmed E. Newman
  17. EdwardM says:

    “This is the first study to show that money, in and of itself, has a causal impact on brain development”

    This is not literally true. What, are they rubbing the dollar bills against the child’s head?

    It would be nice to know the precise mechanism, i.e., money –> ??? –> cognitive development.

    Is it as simple as having more nourishing food? Being able to afford doctor visits or antibiotic prescriptions? (Do we trust that the mothers were spending the windfall on that?) Increased general well-being or security for the mother that allowed her to spend more attention with the children? (Of course there are obvious problems with this hypothesis.) Psychological effect on the mother, like some sort of perceived peer pressure that expects her to perform better since she’s getting paid, or maybe anticipation of further subsidies?

    Or International Jew’s theory, which makes sense:

    Maybe the baby’s brain just registered stimulation from hearing more talking — that of Dad, having heard Mom has extra cash, paying a rare visit.

    • Replies: @Ian M.
    , @notsaying
  18. @International Jew

    My guess would have been stimulation from mama being on crack and
    noo shooz, but yours is probably closer to the zero hypothesis.

  19. hhsiii says:
    @HammerJack

    Yeah, I liked the “in and of itself” bit. What did the extra money provide, or was there just a lot more happy talk with the extra cash around?

  20. “The study released on Monday offers evidence that poverty itself holds children back from their earliest moments.”

    What does it mean to hold someone back from one’s moment? How can I tell if I am or am not being held back from my moment?
    (By the way, clicking on the headline does not link to the NYT article.)

    • Replies: @Hypnotoad666
    , @Reg Cæsar
  21. Most of us know that the implementation of the now 55 y/o Welfare State is the reason the dumbest of these babies are being born in the first place, along with the Welfare Moms that are getting the 333 or 20 bucks, as the case may be.

    Yeah, so more money might fix this mistake. It can’t hurt, right? (Unless you don’t want to raise other people’s kids and don’t like inflation. What are you, anyway?)

  22. Government rewards the wrong people for breeding, on purpose.

  23. @Escher

    There’s probably an additional affect of the Mom’s being in a crack haze resulting in her talking to the baby less, resulting in that higher IQ.

  24. And let’s look at this problem from the other side. Students of the elite British Eton College have requested a meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin. They were accepted. And now take a look at the level of the future British elite

  25. @Anonymous

    If those kids improve to the 25th percentile, they will probably get admitted to Ivy League schools.

  26. ic1000 says:
    @Colin Wright

    > While the size of the recorded differences are modest (about a fifth of a standard deviation), the researchers said they were comparable to those produced by the average school experiment, like giving children tutors.

    The reporter and the researchers are at pains to not recognize the significance of this accidental truth.

    From the kickoff of the Great Society to the present, a succession of breakthrough innovative policy interventions have been proclaimed. Like giving children tutors. Like other Head Start initiatives. Each ends up delivering an effect size of up to… about a fifth of a standard deviation.

    The more rigorous the study, the more modest the size of the recorded differences.
    The recorded differences not being additive, when initiatives are combined.
    The recorded differences not translating into the outcomes that matter most to society.
    The recorded differences not being durable, as months lengthen into years.

    So this Times story means one thing to its target audience, and something quite different to skeptical readers.

    It remains important to discover interventions that are effective. That has to include the ability to recognize “ineffective,” when that is what’s achieved.

  27. First, the study is likely bullshit.

    Second, if it does anything it’s just pushing the children to the same intellectual finish line faster.

    Third, it would be a better use of public funds to incentivize SMART people to have babies.

    • Replies: @ic1000
    , @Inquiring Mind
  28. IQ is just another problem that will be solved by 5G and the Graphene Oxide in COVID vaxxes.

  29. So the rustle of dollar bills being given to the crack man and lottery agent makes an under one-year-old smarter?

    Sorry, I missed what the extra money was used for.

  30. jb says:

    You need to fix your link to the NYT article — right now the link points to the PNAS study. (The article was not that easy to find for me. Not only was it not on the front page, I ended up having to use Google to find it).

  31. I am shocked to read that proper nutrition is beneficial to brain function. Shocked, mind you!

  32. @Peter Johnson

    It is forbidden to even THINK in those terms.

  33. @HammerJack

    I always wondered whatever happened to Miss Ann Elk.

    • LOL: Johann Ricke
    • Replies: @HammerJack
  34. Herewith from The Only Stupid Question is The One You Didn’t Ask department:

    If they’re poor (and, more than likely, single), why the hell are they having kids?

    • Agree: Calvin Hobbes
    • Replies: @lavoisier
  35. “Did not reach Conventional statistical significance” “At the margins of statistical significance”. I love statistical weasel word.

  36. Anon7 says:
    @hhsiii

    Doctors have long referred to money as “the green poultice” which can cure many patient problems.

    • Thanks: Buffalo Joe
  37. ic1000 says:
    @Ben tillman

    The PNAS article is surprisingly well-written. From the description, the study is well-designed (with the caveat that this was never my field, I’d want to hear from a trustworthy expert).

    “Baby’s First Year” enrolled 1,000 mother-baby dyads. “The study was originally designed to have the statistical power to detect an effect size of 0.21 SD [one-fifth of a standard deviation] for any single hypothesis.” Bad luck, the pandemic meant that their data-gathering was disrupted, and they ended up with EEG data on only 435 babies.

    Disappointingly and as expected, these A-Team authors use the Introduction to burnish their mainline extremist Nurture-Only credentials. Nature generally and heredity/genes in particular get the Voldemort treatment.

    [MORE]

    It would be great if a reader with subject-area expertise could comment on the correctness and completeness of this paragraph (references removed):

    Childhood EEG-based brain activity demonstrates a specific developmental pattern. As children mature from the neonatal period through middle childhood, they tend to show a decrease in brain power in the low-frequency portion of the frequency spectrum, as well an increase in brain power in the mid- to high-frequency portions of the frequency spectrum. Individual differences in this pattern, particularly in absolute power, have been associated with children’s cognitive and behavioral outcomes. For example, more absolute power in mid- to high- (i.e., alpha, beta, and gamma) frequency bands has been associated with higher language, cognitive, and social-emotional scores, whereas more absolute or relative low-frequency (i.e., theta) power has been associated with the development of behavioral, attention, or learning problems.

    In the aftermath of the belated recognition of the Replication Crisis, journals require authors to archive the data on which their findings are built, and this was done here. So although these authors’ priors have stunted the questions that they can ask, somebody like Emil Kirkegaard could produce some very interesting followup work (assuming accessibility to the anonymized data at a sufficiently granular level).

    In terms of what was discussed, there’s a glaring red flag in Table 1. “Household combined income at baseline” was about \$21,000, with a standard deviation of about \$18,000. Given the hypothesis that cash payments of \$4,000/year will have a major influence on brain development, that’s a huge unmentioned variation. At -1 SD and +1 SD levels:
    * To a family with \$3k in income, \$4k represents an increase of 130%
    * To a family with \$39k in income, \$4k represents an increase of 10%

    There are some obvious subgroup analyses that one could do with this variable.

    Although they must have thought about it, Baby’s First Years’ investigators don’t seem to have done IQ tests (or Wonderlic tests, or EEGs) on the mothers or fathers. In terms of important questions that could be studied, that’s too bad. Although the likely motives behind this deficit are understandable: by the time you’ve put a lot of work into a grant proposal, you really want to see it get funded.

  38. Ian Smith says:
    @Abolish_public_education

    Care to explain why public schools funded by big gubmint seem to do just fine in places like Finland? And, indeed, outperform private schools in Africa?

  39. Ian Smith says:
    @Abolish_public_education

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_government_budget_per_capita

    African hell-holes have small government budgets per-capita, while Northern European countries have the biggest government budgets per-capita. If small government is the path to prosperity, then why are tax-and-spend countries like Norway at the top of quality-of-life indices while some of the biggest hellholes in the world have the small government so desired by libertarians?

  40. peterike says:

    and it remains to be seen if changes in brain patterns will translate to higher skills

    I’m going with “no.”

  41. We draw data from a subsample of the Baby’s First Years study, which recruited 1,000 diverse low-income mother–infant dyads.

    When you are trying to isolate a single variable having a “diverse” random sample is not a strength. I didn’t read far enough into the study to see if they recorded the ethnicity of their mother-child “dyads.” But making sure you are comparing ethnic apples to apples (e.g. black to black and not Puerto Rican to white), is yet another confounding variable in the study.

    In any event, they are basically admitting their preregistered hypothesis failed and that they can only come up with a correlation between cash payments and positive EEG readings by strategically moving the goalposts to include some cherry-picked slice of the EEG signal. (If you’ll excuse the mixed metaphor).

    So . . . of course it’s presented as a breathtaking successful proof of what the NYT wants to believe. This is basically a perfect example of how social science studies (or anything, really) can always be contorted by woke journalists to support their narrative if they squint hard enough and ignore the inconvenient bits.

  42. This is post hoc significance fishing. The joy of brain scans for researchers is that they generate many measures. Once the authors applied the necessary correction for multiple comparisons, the meagre results became even less evident. Furthermore, the measure of improvement was indirect: something more or less active in many different parts of the brain. A direct measure would have been old-fashioned child development milestones, which can be done by any competent child health visitor. These might have indicated something real.

  43. ic1000 says:
    @Hypnotoad666

    > [Did] they record the ethnicity of their mother-child “dyads”?

    The ethnicities of the mothers, fathers, and (I believe) babies (Black/White/Hispanic) are listed variables in the Baby’s First Year data repository.

  44. @ic1000

    In terms of what was discussed, there’s a glaring red flag in Table 1. “Household combined income at baseline” was about \$21,000, with a standard deviation of about \$18,000. Given the hypothesis that cash payments of \$4,000/year will have a major influence on brain development, that’s a huge unmentioned variation. At -1 SD and +1 SD levels:
    * To a family with \$3k in income, \$4k represents an increase of 130%
    * To a family with \$39k in income, \$4k represents an increase of 10%

    That’s a great observation, and it suggests that the effect, if there is one, of the \$333 per month should be MUCH bigger at the lower end of income than at the upper end. Did the paper look at whether this supposed effect on infant brain activity varied with family income?

  45. After all this ridiculous, false, absurdly false, statistical bullshit vomited out by the Covid tyranny, you would think you guys would get over this stupid, obviously wrong obsession with statistics, even though you massage it to make it say what you want it to, exactly like the Covid tyranny does.

    But no. The dog returns to its own vomit.

    • Replies: @ic1000
    , @notsaying
  46. @Mike_from_Russia

    Pure inbred cretinous scum. Our owners.

    • Troll: Clyde
  47. Yeah right. Nutrition has no effect on brain function. You people are incredible.

    • Replies: @Buffalo Joe
    , @pyrrhus
  48. @Mark Spahn (West Seneca, NY)

    The study released on Monday offers evidence that poverty itself holds children back from their earliest moments.

    Seriously, what is the imagined mechanism of retardation by poverty? If you are a baby whose only purpose is to eat and poop and cry, how are you supposed to know whether your mom has an extra \$330. How is that supposed to change your brain development?

    Shouldn’t you first try to figure out the direct cause of child brain development before trying to guess whether marginal income changes could have an indirect effect on that primary (unknown) cause? Otherwise, you are just piling confounds upon confounds.

    • Agree: Buffalo Joe
    • Replies: @Alice in Wonderland
  49. @Mike_from_Russia

    Do you suppose some of them are straight?

  50. By Jason DeParle
    Jan. 24, 2022

    Jason DeParle had a long 1994 NYT article about Charles Murray and The Bell Curve:

    Daring Research or ‘Social Science Pornography’?: Charles Murray
    By Jason Deparle
    Oct. 9, 1994

    https://www.nytimes.com/1994/10/09/magazine/daring-research-or-social-science-pornography-charles-murray.html

    The article begins by describing wine snob Charles Murray savoring wine in first class on an airplane. Something the article fails to mention is that Murray had gotten an upgrade from coach, and that he had managed to also get an upgrade for NYT journalist Jason DeParle, who was traveling with him.

    DeParle is relentlessly negative in how he portrays Murray, beginning with the title of the article. Apparently, Murray foolishly expected the article to not be a hit piece.

    I’d heard, repeatedly, that Murray, in his youth, had with some friends burned a cross, and this was treated as conclusive evidence that Murray was and always will be an evil racist. I learned from the article that, at least according to Murray and also one of the other culprits, they had no idea that there was some sort of “racist” significance to their prank. Also, this cross burning was done on a hill beside the police station and not on someone’s lawn.

    Anyway, the article is just full of the usual tendentious leftist talking points about IQ.

    • Thanks: ic1000
    • Replies: @Poirot
  51. Here’s another example of willful stupidity about infant “IQ” that was covered by Steve:

    March 13, 2006
    I’m sure this study will get a lot of favorable publicity, because, judging from the abstract, it sounds intentionally stupid, and thus is likely to become part of the conventional wisdom:

    Testing for Racial Differences in the Mental Ability of Young Children

    Roland G. Fryer, Steven D. Levitt
    NBER Working Paper No. 12066 Issued in March 2006

    https://isteve.blogspot.com/2006/03/im-sure-this-study-will-get-lot-of.html

    The “young children” here were infants between 8 and 12 months of age.

  52. Let’s cut out the middle man, and just pay “poor” women not to have kids.

    Way, way more bang for the buck.

  53. @AnotherDad

    See my comment above, A.D. We’ve been paying to raise other people’s children for 55 years. We don’t need to pay anyone anything for anything. Take out the Welfare State and you get what’s called responsibility. Oh, but it’s not cool to criticize Socialism, so …

    • Agree: Adam Smith
    • Replies: @Marat
    , @Alden
  54. Deckin says:
    @ic1000

    Perhaps this lack of control for IQ could be put into a principle:

    Never believe any research involving any aspect of humans that doesn’t control for the IQ of the obvious inputs

    • Thanks: Nicholas Stix
  55. Mike Tre says:

    “This is the first study to show that money, in and of itself, has a causal impact on brain development”

    Like the guy on the left:

    • LOL: William Badwhite
  56. @AnotherDad

    Let’s cut out the middle man, and just pay “poor” women not to have kids.

    That’s a very naive approach to the situation. If you’re a certain Nobel Prize winning economist, you propose that childcare-from-birth be provided to the women whose children tend to have the worst outcomes, thereby encouraging them to have even more children. And, being a Nobel Prize winning economist, you can use sophisticated statistical methods to argue in favor of this proposal that would involve spending many billions of dollars, with your arguments based on the results of a couple of dubious small-scale studies from more than 40 years ago.

    I’m not making this up. The economist in question is James Heckman:

    The Heckman Equation

    https://heckmanequation.org/

  57. Got to give due credit to the Democrats on the clarity of their program
    — print up lots and lots of \$\$\$:
    — encourage the world’s “poor” (i.e. low-IQ) to “refugee” to the border and settle them in America
    — give “poor” mothers \$\$\$ to have “poor” babies
    — encourage the “poor” to riot and loot (and suspend the rule-of-law for them)
    — make sure the “poor” vote as much as necessary for desired result
    — block, harass, fire and/or toss in jail “white supremacists” (i.e. anyone) who objects
    => national greatness!

    It hangs together really well. It’s only that last step i’m a little skeptical of.

    • Agree: bomag, HammerJack
  58. @HammerJack

    “Dr. Kimberly G. Noble, a physician and neuroscientist at Teachers College, Columbia University”

    That sounds like a character in a crude, “alt right” twitter meme.

    Why on Earth does a “Teacher’s College” need a physician or a neuroscientist, to say nothing of both? Why doesn’t she work for a law firm, or a hardware store chain?

  59. @Anonymous

    “The especially evil aspect of this is, should their fundamental theory hold together, then the state would be ensuring that common black narcissists will have a little bit more brain power to more effectively manipulate the shills, dupes and “dum-azz muthfuka’s” they find surrounding them, and they’ll be a little bit harder for the police to catch, and DA’s to prosecute.”

    That’s a pretty subtle and important point. It’s kindof a Flowers for Algernon or even Island of Dr. Moreau situation. If you can only boost IQ so much, are you not creating more physicians and entrepreneurs but simply creating smarter criminals? Shitlibs might be more susceptible to the argument that it’s cruel to increase their intelligence to the point that they know they’re inferior, rather than live in blessed ignorance (cf. AA).

    • Replies: @Francis Miville
  60. countenance says: • Website

    Were the initial beneficiary households carefully preselected, or totally random?

    • Replies: @Colin Wright
  61. @ic1000

    ‘…It remains important to discover interventions that are effective. That has to include the ability to recognize “ineffective,” when that is what’s achieved.’

    It’s also important to realize you can’t make a silk purse out of a sow’s ears. All these innovations tend to amount to determined efforts to ignore the fact that on average, blacks are significantly less intelligent than other races. This nonsense has been going on for sixty years now, and it’s getting old.

  62. @J.Ross

    “Is there one case in history ever where the Democrat solution was not to spend more money?”

    Deinstitutionalization of the mentally ill. Liberal proponents of “muh freedom” from coercion joined hands with conservative proponents of “muh liberty” from govt spending. See what we can accomplish when we all work together?

    • Replies: @Donald A Thomson
  63. @ic1000

    innovative policy interventions have been proclaimed. Like giving children tutors.

    After the government destroyed the efficient, effective, little red schoolhouse model (i.e. small-sized class, 90 d/yr, school marm paid by parents concerned, 12 year old students cooperatively helping their 6 year old classmates, etc.) and replaced it with the one-size-fits-all, massive incompetent bureaucracy we think of today, some gov study revealed that teaching one-on-one might be a little less sucky.

    If public education were simply reduced to a ‘least sucky’ structure:

    • reserved exclusively for the desperately poor — ~1% of kids
    • two lesson-hours per day (none of this 6+ hours of daycare)
    • done by 8th grade

    then

    ° the kids could be taught by \$50/hr, subject expert, nurturing, one-on-one TUTORS who make house calls, and

    ° the Education Trust (established 150+ years ago) could fund the entire burden by itself.

    Oh, no. We can’t have poor kids learning their ABCs when we have union mouths to feed.

  64. gc says:

    If the p-value is so high it seems to me that the effects of giving money are modest at best. I would actually expected more given better nutrition.

  65. edkpyros says:
    @AnotherDad

    Absolutely—the public cost for an indigent woman’s child can be astronomical.

    If, as frequently happens, there is possible neglect or abuse—or even cause for an investigation which is ultimately unsubstantiated—the costs rise dramatically. Maltreated children incur an average lifetime costs of nearly \$1 million each.

    And often overlooked is the high percentage of such children with medical, developmental, and/or psychological problems—these are often parents who are addicts, abusers, etc.—which cause costs to skyrocket.

    In a big city, a child with developmental/medical issues and a neglectful mother can easily incur annual costs in excess of \$500k.

    And it’s a virtual guarantee that mother will not stop at one child—nor is there any incentive to do so.

    To expect taxpayers to shoulder these endless costs—their offspring tend to repeat the cycle—is insanity. Yet the slightest suggestion that such women should be disincentivized from having children is verboten and guaranteed to elicit comparison to Nazis.

    \$20k cash for a tubal ligation would be a bargain and almost as many would likely do it for \$5k— and ligation by clip or loop is ~90% reversible. Hell, even paying \$2k to get an IUD or hormone-releasing contraceptive implant put in, with additional payments for each checkup, could save billions.

    And with Vasalgel (RISUG) on the horizon, we should soon be able to pay men to get their “tubes” blocked. It’s reversible (although we should make sure Medicaid doesn’t cover the reversal)—and my guess is that “paying” men not to father children will be a lot more palatable than incentives for female sterilization. That said, I can see black men balking—given the absurd conspiracy theories about everything from the Tuskegee Syphilis Study to crack cocaine, it’s not hard to imagine claims of “genocide” getting traction.

    It’s remarkable how effectively the “social-justice” types have demonized any sort of incentive for rational family planning. Here, for example, is an argument against the “dangerous” and “unfounded belief” that promoting long-acting birth control in low-SES populations reduces poverty and has economic benefits:

    Promoting IUDs and implants is certainly less egregious than state-sponsored eugenics. But promoting them from a poverty-reduction perspective still targets the reproduction of certain women based on a problematic and simplistic understanding of the causes of societal ills.

    https://www.nytimes.com/2019/01/02/opinion/iud-implants-contraception-poverty.html

    There is at least one organization that pays primarily drug-addicted men and women to get long-er birth control or be sterilized: Project Prevention.

    http://projectprevention.org

    They’ve had some success with incentives of just \$300—imagine what \$10k could do!

  66. Malcolm Y says:

    These things are always like a plate of spaghetti and you have to untangle the whole thing. Who wants to spend the effort to try and understand them? It’s like if you’re short say 5’4″ and adopt a strict regimen and keep it up for life you can be 5’4 1/4″

  67. bomag says:
    @hhsiii

    Good point; notable lack of discussion on where the money was spent.

    More books? More crap off Amazon/WalMart? More nutritious food? More trips to fast food outlets?

    I get the vibe that there was more general happiness in the household from the extra money. But like many lottery winners, there is a spike of joy that tapers off to the original set point, or lower, after learning to spend the money. In this case, an encouragement to have more kids for more \$\$\$ until the original pain returns, and the Nash equilibrium for all of us gets that much lower.

    It’s hard to move off one’s given utility function.

  68. @J.Ross

    “is this like the one-in-twenty-five NPR stories that accidentally tell some truth?”

    Did you akshully listen to twenty-five NPR stories to come up with that ratio? And if so, how did you escape the brains-dripping-out-of-ears-after-listening-to-NPR condition that afflicts long-time iSteve antagonist Coronavirus? He’s quite the softheaded one.

  69. bomag says:
    @Pahrump Coyote

    As noted elsewhere by commenter ic1000, the Progs think these programs are additive: if \$333 gains six points on the scale, we just need to give \$3330 to gain sixty points! More is better!

    But they are pointedly non-additive, with almost all gains tapering off over time.

  70. bomag says:
    @James Thompson

    Reminds me of the researcher who scanned a dead fish and got all kinds of such data.

  71. Mr. Grey says:

    I got a head start from candy cigarettes and watching H.R. Puffinstuff. Has anyone done a study on these brain enhancers?

  72. Gabe Ruth says:
    @International Jew

    TFW throwaway iSteve comments reveal the likely causal variable that literally no one reading NYT or doing Science! is capable of conceiving of.

    • Replies: @Alrenous
  73. Marat says:
    @Mike_from_Russia

    The Asian kid appears bored but resigned to the antics, maybe wondering if his parents are disappointed.

    Sometime between 2000-2005 my alumni magazines started photographing the new grads posing as though they were hysterically happy, clowning around like above. Not a confidence inspiring look for medicine – more suitable for recruiting party planners or travel ads.

  74. Muggles says:

    I look forward to the press conference at which Joe and Kamala try to explain this study.

    Joe & Kamala: “Steve Sailer is a son-of-a-bitch!”

    • LOL: ic1000, acementhead
    • Replies: @Buffalo Joe
  75. @countenance

    ‘Were the initial beneficiary households carefully preselected, or totally random?’

    I’m reminded of the effect where school teachers were ‘advised’ that randomly selected students were about to have an intellectual growth spurt or something like that — and sure enough, they usually did.

    Expectations can do a lot. Were these mothers told their child’s intellectual performance would improve? If I start making a point of reading to my child, making him watch educational television, asking him if he did his homework, etc, there should be some measurable effect, given a large enough sample.

  76. Marat says:
    @Achmed E. Newman

    California just rolled out a new nanny program called CalSavers. During 2022, employers must set up 401k-like accounts for their employees. Because “workers” need state supervision on saving, not to mention housing, healthcare, transportation, unionizing, contracting, and sorting their trash for composting.

    Unfortunately, it appears the welfare state will keep mushrooming until complete collapse. It didn’t have to be this way, but any alternative reality would have required consistent refusal to give in to progressives as far back as the turn of the previous century.

    • Replies: @Achmed E. Newman
  77. @hhsiii

    “This is the first study to show that money, in and of itself, has a causal impact on brain development,”

    The study shows nothing of the kind.

    Absurd on its face.

    lil’ Kim is a joke.

  78. My wife and I watch our two year old grand daughter every Friday. Sometimes we give her mom and dad a night off and keep her over night. We spend no time watching TV. We spend hours playing with blocks or reading from books or with shape and color toys or taking walks. However, I do play a William Tell Overture video while she rides her rocking horse. You could not pay me enough to not spend time with her and we should not have to pay a mother to spend time with her child. Biggest problem black kids have is they are born in black wombs. Call me what you want, true fact. And, the study says “poor” children but….does this stipend count as reparations? Sometimes I hate myself when I write things like this but this is the Twenty First Century.

  79. @Mark Spahn (West Seneca, NY)

    What does it mean to hold someone back from one’s moment? How can I tell if I am or am not being held back from my moment?

  80. @Hypnotoad666

    Shouldn’t you first try to figure out the direct cause of child brain development before trying to guess whether marginal income changes could have an indirect effect on that primary (unknown) cause? Otherwise, you are just piling confounds upon confounds.

    That would be a scientific approach. I suspect lil’ Kim is a mystic and has all sorts of popular superstitions she subscribes to. Remember low self esteem and stereotype threat were supposedly depressing black achievement until that was debunked. Now, it is the new mystical effect of systemic (superstition) racism and money makes you smart. Well then by that logic, Trumps kids should be really really smart, right?

    It is all smoke and mirrors.

  81. @Muggles

    Mug, nice try but Joe would say…”You some of me? You want to do push ups, you dog faced pony soldier.”

  82. Ian M. says:
    @EdwardM

    Reminds me of that South Park episode where the cure to Magic Johnson’s AIDS is discovered to be literally money.

  83. @ic1000

    by the time you’ve put a lot of work into a grant proposal, you really want to see it get funded.

    And how many of these crap studies get funded and show absolutely no benefit to kids of whatever goofy intervention? I mean if there are enough of them, just on luck they should get some kind of positive results sometimes. Of course we never hear of the vast majority which are epic fails.

    • Replies: @ic1000
  84. @Hypnotoad666

    So . . . of course it’s presented as a breathtaking successful proof of what the NYT wants us to believe.

    FIFY

    They’ll even be allowed to use their own computers lol

    On the bright side, Ivy League expansion is here! Sixteen colleges now.

    Duke, Chicago, Stanford, um, MIT, um, Hopkins? Rice (cough)? Georgetown? Virginia? Help me out here. Amherst Williams and Swarthmore?

  85. @Mike_from_Russia

    Mike, that looks like 10 boys from any one of the local Catholic prep schools or private schools. Except, there would be at least one black young man and the jackets would be blazers with the school patch.

    • Replies: @Mike_from_Russia
  86. @Gary in Gramercy

    Thanks. I was indeed trying to channel that fetching lass. An early tranny, and of course that show was full of them.

  87. anon[307] • Disclaimer says:

    posts like these make me feel sorry for steve and his black husband.

    his disability is truly pathetic.

  88. Poirot says:
    @Calvin Hobbes

    Indeed.

    Read about it here: http://www.booknotes.org/Watch/61965-1/Charles-Murray.aspx
    It’s the interview Charles Murray did for Booknotes on C-SPAN.
    He gets the chance to calmly explain what The Bell Curve really is about.**
    DeParle framed Murray as “The Most Dangerous Conservative

    “Jason followed me around for a long time, spent hours and hours, days and days with me. And it never occurred to me that Jason was going to pick out the 10 or 12 little data points from this huge amount of experience with Charles Murray to make the point he wanted to make. (…) [DeParle] went first, and the thing that opens the article, first class on an airplane with me to Aspen, Colorado, where it turns out I am this heartless bon vivant who leers at women and sips champagne and talks cooly about the poor while sitting in first class. As it turns out, I was actually doing that on my frequent flier miles and Jason was also up there because of my frequent flier miles. But then once I read the first few paragraphs, I said, “Uh-oh, I’m in trouble,” and I was. (…) And I’ve never been punished like this before. This is why, you know, I I’m an idiot in terms of saying that I should have been smarter. The fact is, for 10 years I have had mostly contact with a critical press — I mean, a press that doesn’t agree with my opinions and I’ve actually been treated quite fairly. And so it has always been my experience that if you’re open and so forth, it works out OK. (…) What I have found out this fall, and I’m not going to talk about this much more because all at once I can hear how I’m beginning to sound like a whiner. The rules are suspended for this book. I mean, what Dick Herrnstein and I have written is so awful in some people’s opinion that anything goes in terms of what you can say — things about the book that aren’t true, you can make allegations about the authors that aren’t true, but it’s all doing the Lord’s work because these guys are saying such awful things. That’s my view of it right now.”

    ** I would really like to do it not in the sound bite fashion, because it doesn’t lend itself to a sentence. Let me just talk for a minute. First point is, Dick Herrnstein and I came to this book saying, “Look, you have this concept called intelligence — human intelligence, which has been a pariah in the world of ideas now for 30 years. You know, it’s racist artifacts, statistical bungling, the tests don’t really measure anything, we don’t know how to define intelligence, etc., etc.” That’s sort of the conventional wisdom as understood by The New York Times.
    And then within the profession, among the people who deal in this issue, intelligence is quite well understood. And there’s a great deal of scientific consensus about a lot of these issues. So our first objective was to say, “Let’s take this extremely important variable, this construct, and look at the way that social problems are affected by it.” And we set out on the book with literally that as our objective. You know, people — we’ll get into some of this later — but one of the allegations about the book is, “Oh, there’s this political agenda,” and they sort of fit the book to the political agenda. It was exactly the opposite. The simplest way of talking about how this book got written was that Dick Herrnstein and I thought this was utterly fascinating. And we were completely absorbed in looking at American society through this new lens.
    Now having said that, Brian, there are a couple of arguments that summarize, in broad strokes, what the book says. The problem exists at the two tails of the distribution, the tails referring to those narrow segments out at each side. At the high end, this nation has undergone a revolution in the last 50 years whereby we have become extremely efficient, first, at sucking up from all around the country, from little towns, everywhere, the very brightest kids and shipping them off to Harvard, Yale, Stanford, Princeton, MIT, etc. — the elite colleges. Not all of them go there, obviously, but I’ll give you an example. Of the kids who score over 700 in the SAT verbals, which is a very high score, something like 31 percent of them go to one of the top 10 elite schools. And that’s just an example of what’s going on.
    Furthermore, you’ve got all these occupations that are rewarding brains a lot more than they used to. So you’re much more efficient at identifying these kids, you’re rewarding them much better, they do well in the marketplace and other people don’t do well. And they also not only go to the same schools, they’re socialized into the same folkways and all the ways in which — if you sit in Cambridge, Massachusetts, for four years, you were socialized in lots of way. Same with, in a way, with New Haven and the rest. This forms a cognitive elite.”

    • Thanks: bomag, Calvin Hobbes
  89. ic1000 says:
    @obwandiyag

    After all this ridiculous, false, absurdly false, statistical bullshit vomited out by the Covid tyranny, you would think you guys would get over this stupid, obviously wrong obsession with statistics, even though you massage it to make it say what you want it to, exactly like the Covid tyranny does. But no. The dog returns to its own vomit.

    What ‘you’? Who are ‘you guys’? Whose dog returning to vomit? Are you submitting your comments to the right post? The right website? Is sleepwriting even a thing?

    So many questions.

    • LOL: bomag
  90. While the size of the recorded differences are modest (about a fifth of a standard deviation), the researchers said they were comparable to those produced by the average school experiment, like giving children tutors.

    If the ‘size of the recorded differences’ runs to 0.2σ, that gives a p-value that is not consistent with statistical significance.

    So this goes in the standard slop-bucket as all bullshit Woke grievance-studies research – the same bucket of rotten shit as almost everything ever produced by a pharma company… or anyone with psych[] in their credentials.

    It’s not just innumeracy: this study was designed with a goal in mind, and the data misrepresented to generate a press release. SAFE AND EFFECTIVE.

    Also: giving kiddies tutors is a waste of time and money unless (and perhaps even if) the kiddie is already talented.

    I have seen no solid evidence that the few kiddies who matter (95th percentile and up) need tutoring, if only to participate in the modern ‘arms race’. They shouldn’t need to be test-prepped: that’s for the ‘next decile’ kids.

    At university and grad-school level, it’s even easier. If a kiddie can’t get a merit-based academic bursary/scholarship, they probably shouldn’t be there. Non-scholars are there to pay fees to make up the numbers and defray the admin costs: with vanishingly-rare exceptions they will not end up working in the discipline. (There are some wrinkles in places like the US: sports ‘scholarships’ for joggers might be net-revenue-generating for the institution – although it’s unlikely given what coaches are paid).

    Sucks, but it is what it is. We do not live in Lake Woebegone. Most children are stupid and will grow up to be stupid adults.

    It is the miracle of technology – developed by people in the ‘Goldilocks’ IQ region (120-140) – that enables the stupid to enjoy lives of relative luxury.

    Even modern inner-city joggers live in luxury which would have seemed like science fiction to people born at the time of the Civil War.

  91. ic1000 says:
    @Alice in Wonderland

    > And how many of these crap studies get funded and show absolutely no benefit to kids of whatever goofy intervention?

    When I said, “by the time you’ve put a lot of work into a grant proposal, you really want to see it get funded,” that wasn’t to compliment the researchers behind “Baby’s First Steps.”

    It’s obvious that the intelligence of baby can be influenced in many ways by the intelligence of the parents. If, contra James Thompson (#41), you think that the absolute power of the EEG alpha-, beta-, and gamma-bands is the best proxy for brain-goodness, then okay… collect EEGs from the parents instead of doing Wonderlics.

    Since this reasoning is hardly rocket surgery, it’s notable that such information was not gathered by study leader Dr. Kimberly G. Noble (physician and neuroscientist on the faculty of Columbia, an Ivy League University). (1) She was afraid what she’d find, (2) She was afraid of what the grant reviewers anticipated she’d find, or (3) Both.

    Although she had to resort to a post-hoc analysis kludge to eke out a “one fifth of a standard deviation” difference, people like NYT reporter Jason deParle are celebrating this landmark achievement.

    So everybody’s happy.

    • Thanks: Calvin Hobbes
  92. This has been a racial socialist talking point for many years, and may well have been dealt with by Steve previously. Racial socialists–and Jason deParle is a career racial-socialist propagandist–deal in miracles, especially regarding education. For years they have promoted the miracle of pre-K education, which has resulted in short-term gains that completely disappeared after a few years. Ditto for “remedial education,” which they never even studied, and which exists purely for political aggrandizement.

    As Hume said regarding “miracles,” extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence. deParle & Co. never provide any honest evidence supporting their miraculous claims. (When they provide “evidence,” it’s typically in the form of lies, referring to fake “fugitive” research, or lying about failed research, or within defamatory, character assassination screeds against their enemies.)

    Since 1965, deParle & Co. have pickpocketed White taxpayers to the tune of tens of trillions of dollars (see Bob Rector’s very conservative research on the matter). They just move from hoax to hoax, without ever admitting to being wrong. Already during the 1990s, deParle was promoting this garbage, asserting that welfare must be massively increased.

    It’s all about pauperizing, disenfranchising, and annihilating Whites, and providing ever more job mills and racist political strongholds for racist blacks, hispanics, and other members of the racial-socialist alliance.

    But what happens when there are no more Whites to leech off of?

  93. bomag says:
    @Ian Smith

    Maybe ’cause correlation isn’t always causation?

  94. Drinking dem fawties is also good for the fetus of color!

  95. @Ian Smith

    African hell-holes have small government budgets per-capita, while Northern European countries have the biggest government budgets per-capita. If small government is the path to prosperity, then why are tax-and-spend countries like Norway at the top of quality-of-life indices while some of the biggest hellholes in the world have the small government so desired by libertarians?

    You’re assuming that the human capital in the ‘African hell-holes’ is substitutable with the human capital in Northern European countries.

    That’s a retarded assumption.

    You might be unaware that it’s the assumption you’re making, but it’s the assumption you’re making.

    The ‘libertarian’ argument is not that a Libertarian Africa will perform equally-well to a Libertarian Scandinavia: it’s that a Libertarian Scandinavia will perform better than a Kakistocractic Scandinavia – which is where a non-Libertarian Scandinavia will end up, with probability 1. (They’re not there yet – but that’s the end-point for all democracies. No exceptions: it’s part of the recipe).

    Africa: below the fold.

    [MORE]

    I’m among the more-sanguine Unz-ers when it comes to the prospects for Africa: it’s still resource-rich, and they’ve been encouraged to switch their ‘development model’ from “US-centric aid-vampires running the usual ‘Economic Hit-Man’ grift” to “Chinese non-tied development aid“.

    I’m not pretending that the Chinks are doing development in Africa out of altruism: they’ve got their eye on a gigantic consumer market within a generation.

    China knows what happens when you lift a billion people out of absolute poverty (i.e., where risk of death from starvation is ever-present).

    They sensibly realise that once Africa (esp Darkie-Africa – SSA) gets above subsistence levels of output per capita, TFR will plummet and expenditure on consumer goods will grow rapidly.

    China is giving SSA a tow-in at Pipeline.

    The West’s model has always been “Take their shit – by force and fraud – and leave them to fend for themselves“.

    The fraud aspect has predominated in the last quarter-century, through aid-recycling:
     • part-fund infrastructure with aid;
    conditional on
      • construction contracts for aid-originator countries’ firms (KBR etc)
      • government debt-funding the balance.

    The government debt-funding component is greenshoed by Western finance firms (so the debt is rated much higher than sovereign risk would predict), with all those tasty investment-banking fees to help ‘lubricate’ the over-rating by the world’s (conflicted) ratings agencies.

    Later, when the project doesn’t get done on time or budget (but KBR gets paid – as does S&P, Fitch and Moody’s), the government defaults and the project winds up owned by foreign consortia.

    And of course stupid corrupt idiots in charge of the target government are stupid and corrupt – which is just a force-multiplier for the inherent, systemic fraud of the whole enterprise. (Whether or not the SSA-government actors are aware of the grift from the start, and participate out of personal self-interest, is open for debate. My conclusion is that they are.)

    Given the objectively-observable differences in cognitive potential (African darkies being even stupider than white housewives), that has always struck me as like stealing the lunch-money off kids on the short bus.

    If you’ve ever seen the ‘Bart the Genius‘ episode of The Simpsons you will have some sense of what I mean.

    The ‘lunch trade’ scene in particular. (Starts at 58 seconds, in case the video doesn’t queue properly).

    • Replies: @Ian Smith
  96. Evidence abounds that poor children on average start school with weaker cognitive skills, and neuroscientists have shown that the differences extend to brain structure and function. But it has not been clear if those differences come directly from the shortage of money or from related factors like parental education or neighborhood influences.

    It’s really shocking how successful the Jewish minoritarians were with their assault on genetics and common sense.

    The American people neither shared their political orientation–communist–nor were we absent a common sense “barnyard” understanding of the importance of heredity.

    But these clowns nonetheless prevailed with their nonsense echoed by their ethnic kin in the media/academia and through their marketplace style “argument”–squawking the same pitch again and again, louder and louder.

    I’m embarrassed that we gentiles let this happen. It’s one thing to be open and polite, but there comes a time to call “bullshit” and call a spade a spade. You can’t maintain a decent nation/civilization on a foundation of lies about fundamental human nature.

  97. @obwandiyag

    oby, nutrition, as I am sure most here will agree, has a lot to do brain function, ie, development. But where does it state that the children were fed better? I did not see where it states that the extra money had to be used for any specific purpose, such as food. We could hope it was spent exclusively on the child.

    • Replies: @Alrenous
    , @Alden
  98. notsaying says:
    @EdwardM

    The real story we all want to know is not here: what changes in behavior did that money cause?

    The science is of interest to the scientists of course but the rest of us want to know how we can improve the lives of children.

  99. notsaying says:
    @obwandiyag

    Sure there can manipulated data and false claims made about statistics.

    But without them what kind of medical breakthroughs would we ever have? We have to test things while they are being developed and then before we give them to people.

    So what is your alternative suggestion?

  100. I’m always an “immigration the issue” guy. Cause it’s basically irreversible without a lot of serious pain–and we really don’t want to go there.

    But turning around the debacle and getting back to eugenic fertility is critical. You can’t maintain civilization very long if you’re encouraging dumb/incompetent/unproductivve people to outbreed the productive.

    ~~

    I’m very unimpressed by the Chinese leadership. Very slow reacting intelligently on a number of fronts. (Only in comparison to the West do they end up looking wise.) But they aren’t idiots and i’ve got to believe they will at some point adopt a eugenic policies–perhaps bolstered by coming genetic technologies.

    While we just some mired in abject stupidity. And if that continues American life is going to get really depressing.

    • Agree: Achmed E. Newman
  101. Brutusale says:
    @Ian Smith

    Luxembourg
    Norway
    Greenland
    Monaco
    Denmark
    Iceland
    Sweden
    Switzerland
    Finland
    Andorra
    Qatar
    Liechtenstein
    Austria
    Belgium

    Ian, my boy, did you notice that the top 15 countries include 14 extremely homogenous European nations and one wealthy oil sheikdom?

    • Replies: @Ian Smith
    , @Reg Cæsar
  102. Ian Smith says:
    @Brutusale

    Exactly my point, Brutusale!

    • Replies: @Brutusale
  103. @Brutusale

    Ian, my boy, did you notice

    I like how the last six spell out ”FAQ LAB”.

    Also, the high taxes are a result of the homogeneity, not the cause of the prosperity. This is synchronicity, not causation.

    I hear Switzerland is as rich as Sweden, and New Hampshire is quite nice, too.

    • Replies: @Brutusale
  104. @Marat

    Thank you for the info on California, Marat. As great as the geophysical climate is, the political climate is brutal, pretty much Communist. It couldn’t have happened to a more beautiful place.

    Re your 2nd paragraph, I’ll be generous and say pushback would have been required by the FDR era, or even more generously, during the time of the scumbag Lyndon Johnson. Perhaps the defeat of Barry Goldwater in 1964 was the beginning of the end. Damned Boomers!*

    .

    * Oh, I know that only a few of them voted against Barry Goldwater (and even fewer FOR him), but they should have pitched temper tantrums to get their parents to vote differently, or something! Damned Boomers!

    • Replies: @Reg Cæsar
  105. @Nicholas Stix

    I agree with your comment, Nick, but I’d also add it’s about another thing too, per your

    For years they have promoted the miracle of pre-K education, which has resulted in short-term gains that completely disappeared after a few years.

    They don’t really care if there are even short-term gains. They want your kids even earlier in life than Kindergarten for indoctrination. It works very well during those years.

    Abolish_Public_Education is right.

    Keep ’em home and Let Them Eat Dirt.

  106. @Ben tillman

    It’s the same thing with Global Warming/Climate Change/Climate Crisis where academics can scoop up grant funding to study an issue with heavy political consequences riding on the outcome.

    Confirmation bias. Can you say that? I knew you could!

  107. @Achmed E. Newman

    Oh, I know that only a few of them voted against Barry Goldwater (and even fewer FOR him)

    Goldwater carried Georgia but lost Kentucky, the only states where any postwar babies could vote. Electoral-Collegially, that’s a 12-9 victory. However, Goldwater did worse in Kentucky than in general, 35.65% vs 38.47%.

    …but they should have pitched temper tantrums to get their parents to vote differently, or something!

    I stood on a neighbor’s lawn waving a Goldwater sign, a decade before I could vote. Didn’t help any.

    I suppose Mom could have done the same with FDR, and her dad with Wilson. It would have been easier– her family was German!

    • Replies: @Achmed E. Newman
  108. @Reg Cæsar

    Hey, you’re the one that clued me into the fact that some baby boomers at ALL could vote in that election, Reg. (That was not only by age, but your point that some States already had 18 y/o voting.) I remembered what you wrote that time, and I did keep this in mind. Thanks for that analysis and the map, but I guess they didn’t have so many exit polls then for getting at the more certain data.

    Either way, you should have waved harder, Boomer!

    BTW, who did your Mom and her German Dad vote for?

    • Replies: @Reg Cæsar
  109. pyrrhus says:
    @IdCov

    About the same, actually….

  110. pyrrhus says:
    @obwandiyag

    Iodine has an effect on brain function, and sufficient protein helps we think….But money given to black single mothers is likely spent on whoopee, not fish and chips…

  111. @Nicholas Stix

    pre-K education, which has resulted in short-term gains that completely disappeared after a few years.

    We homeschooled. In the early “grades” we were (necessarily) very involved. Yes, the gains were short-term. It continued like that until the kids grew older and found the subjects that excited them (or not). We came to understand that it was only natural that it should work like that. We still believe, however, that all the early hand holding was worthwhile: It was a great way to spend time with them, get to know them, etc.

    Public pre-pre-..pre-K (pre-birth?) is less than worthless: It diminishes the amount of time (= quality) that kids spend with their parents. But it’s great for the schools: It turns warm bodies into funding tokens that much sooner.

    Ditto for “remedial education,”

    In junior college, the Math and English courses are mostly there to provide remedial instruction. (In California, the state colleges used to show many such courses in the catalog, but that was very embarrassing to the state’s K-12 system. The colleges now assign remedial sections as co-requisites. They don’t grant degree credit for them.) Now the push everywhere is to make JC free. How many times must taxpayers pony-up to teach the 3Rs?

  112. @Buffalo Joe

    Additionally, I should have noted that they left very cheeky comments about the host party. Technically, this only confirms that they have a worldview in which they are white gentlemen and the rest are local Papuans

  113. Alrenous says: • Website
    @Buffalo Joe

    It’s very true that Americans are malnourished. I ate a fairly “healthy” diet as a kid, and I suffered from several severe nutrient deficiencies. I checked by fixing it and noticing the difference is so big you don’t need a double-blind trial with thousands of participants to squeeze out an effect. (I call this the guillotine test.)

    Since it’s already considered healthy, giving them more money is not going to fix it, even if it’s intentionally spent on this.

    Severe deficiency in: iodine, vitamin D, omega-3, salt. Probably some B-vitamins or something I didn’t bother to granulate. I haven’t properly checked vitamin K yet, but it’s on the list. Minor deficiency in calcium, despite daily dairy. Minor deficiency in vinegar. What vitamin is vinegar? Wat? Anyway, have more vinegar, it helps. (Possibly not white vinegar. It’s the same price so I get something else.)

    One of the effects has been dramatically improved cognitive function. Most clearly on video game bosses. I used to have to plan on not being able to do certain manoeuvres, and now not only can I do them, they come naturally, like I’m aging in reverse. Twitch reflexes going up.

    • Replies: @Reg Cæsar
  114. Alrenous says: • Website
    @Gabe Ruth

    It is very difficult to get a man to think of something which his job depends on nobody realizing.

  115. @Achmed E. Newman

    She told me two contradictory things about Grandpa over the years– that he was apolitical, and that he was a staunch Republican. Her youngest sibling survives, but I’m wary of asking her.

    Kevin Phillips wrote that FDR’s warmongering cost him a lot of German and Irish votes in his final two elections, as it was seen as sucking up to the British. I think it was the decision that feeding your pigs slop produced on the other side of the farm constituted “interstate commerce” that cost him 800+ counties. The Democratic bloodbath occurred in 1938. But they were already so far ahead that they still held Congress.

    • Thanks: Achmed E. Newman
  116. J.Ross says:
    @Ian Smith

    Small government is a self-explanatory moral imperative (or an equally simple ideological anchor), not a get rich quick scheme. It happens to have the effect of enabling wealth generation because you can’t make grass grow but you can remove rocks from on top of the grass.

    • Replies: @Ian Smith
  117. @Alrenous

    It’s very true that Americans are malnourished.

    I learned two strikingly different things this month. One is that those who spent time in concentration camps or as POWs got a boost in longevity afterwords. The de facto fasting promoted bodily purging of toxins and other extraneous things. (That was in an article in Reader’s Digest, which lately appears to have rebounded and is finally useful again.)

    The other is that those born immediately after the “hungerwinter” in Holland in 1944-45 had much higher rates of obesity, diabetes, etc., than those born before or after. It seems that their gestational deprivation had wired them for a life of starvation, but instead they got a life of plenty. Annie Murphy Paul describes this in her TED talk.

    So feed the kid until he’s born, then starve him. He’ll thank you.

    • Replies: @Alrenous
  118. @Pahrump Coyote

    But black welfare mothers already have lots of additional money beyond what they claim to have, and Jason DeParle knows it.

    Back during the 1990s, a couple of lefty, White social scientists named Kathryn Edin and Laura Lein got dozens of grad students to interview hundreds of unwed, black welfare and working-poor mothers in five areas across the country. They found that the average, unwed black welfare mother was spending three-to-sex times her official income, through additional, unofficial income via their children’s fathers, from boyfriends, relatives, off-the-books jobs (e.g., babysitting), selling stolen goods, prostitution, or dealing drugs.
    DeParle wrote a long puff piece on the study for the new york times magazine when the book came out in 1997.

    Thus, these kids should already be rocket scientists.

    https://nicholasstixuncensored.blogspot.com/2012/08/wholl-stop-rain.html

  119. Ian Smith says:
    @Wokechoke

    Thank you for being the only commenter to get my point.

  120. Ian Smith says:
    @Kratoklastes

    While I do think that government expenditure and intervention hit a point of diminishing returns, I think that the human…scratch that, racial capital of a society is the most important factor in a society’s success or failure.

    The reason I’m harping on Africa v. Europe is not so much to argue for the Social Democratic model as I’m trying to snap our people out of obsessing with trivialities like how to fund schools or the bloody gold standard and focus on the preservation of our people and their future. If anything, libertarianism is even more toxic than socialism because it promotes an individualistic, atomized mindset among white people, making them easier pickings for our enemies.

  121. Scott Alexander offers his usual takedown of junk science and mythological statistics on his substack post:

    https://astralcodexten.substack.com/p/against-that-poverty-and-infant-eegs

    Scott includes links to other studies – Stuart Ritchie, Andrew Gelman for instance. Sailer’s readers may recognize those names.

    (Scott’s substack post is public).

  122. @James J O'Meara

    Experience has rather proved that a higher IQ, statistically at least, results in less criminality and less taste for get rich quick schemes, especially among blacks. The most perfect combination for a criminal is a rather low or average IQ but a high power of seduction and of imitation of the kind you can develop in a theatre school. Most criminals don’t count on their own brain to devise their schemes, they rather first count on others’ brains they can exploit, on their group’s spirit and at a higher level on occult forces they try their best never to look up into. Last but not least, Blacks often count on Jews’ brains rather than their own.

  123. @AnotherDad

    It is because the 1776 revolution was a real collective Satanic pact : namely, the new country being founded was given the assurance it would fast become the richest of the world at a degree of general prosperity never seen in known history, on condition they accepted that with each generation of prosperity passing their intelligence would decrease, up to a point in time it would be the lowest in the world and be used as beasts of burden by more recent immigrants and become their own negro slaves’ slaves until the day came they would lose their sovereignty and be subject to a distant king, this time of Israel, since the only way for them to forfeit their oath of fidelity to the King of England was to transfer their oath to the then abstract and invisible King of Israel. This pact was signed collectively and each immigrant who accepts American citizenship also signs it.

  124. megabar says:

    > I’m actually sympathetic to researchers who come up with new ideas when they finally get their hands on the real results, but pre-registration purists are not.

    I’m sympathetic, too, but only if the post-study analysis is viewed as a hypothesis generator, and not a finding.

  125. @James J O'Meara

    I think that the figure for mentally ill people in Queensland prisons is one quarter of the total imprisoned. Alas, I can’t trust my memory on that one. I am certain that savings are sometimes illusory because it takes work to add up the new set of costs while the cost of dedicated institutional care is much easier to calculate. We’re all lazy so we all do stupid things. Of course, it takes work to find out whether we’ve been stupid. That’s why people like me need people like Ron Unz and sometimes Obwandiyag. Opinions are important but you need the basic data to form them. That’s why I find it easy to forgive Obwandiyag when he becomes irate at the mere appearance of some young men from Eton, while imagining them as his masters. Too much wine? Just stirring? Who cares? [email protected]

  126. Ian Smith says:
    @J.Ross

    There’s no such thing as a self-explanatory moral imperative.

    • Replies: @J.Ross
  127. Brutusale says:
    @Reg Cæsar

    High taxes are supported by people who want to help themselves and other people who are just like them.

    And neither Sweden nor New Hampshire is quite as nice as they used to be, but for entirely different reasons. Sweden due to Somalis and Middle Easterners, New Hampshire due to Massholes moving there.

    NH still has their part-time legislature, though.

  128. Brutusale says:
    @Ian Smith

    Indeed. It was the appearance of Qatar in the top 15 was the thing to me: 14 liberal democracies and a country where you could be stoned to death if you’re gay.

  129. lavoisier says: • Website
    @Prester John

    If they’re poor (and, more than likely, single), why the hell are they having kids?

    Because WE, and by that I mean deluded white liberal fools and the whores they control in government, have embraced the egalitarian fiction and have never for a second considered the possibility that incentivizing stupid people to breed is not a good idea for society.

    Funny how the same people with Darwin stickers on their bumper do not recognize dysgenics when it slaps them square in the face.

  130. @HammerJack

    “This is the first study to show that money, in and of itself, has a causal impact on brain development,” said Dr. Kimberly G. Noble, a physician and neuroscientist at Teachers College, Columbia University, who helped lead the study.

    And Dr Kim will be wanting a Noble prize for that.

  131. Alden says:
    @AnotherDad

    Let’s just ensure that poor non White women don’t have kids. It’s easy, for baby girls slice and snip. For the baby boys the same size castrators used for lambs and pigs can by used.

    Within 25 years the crime rate would go way down and life in general would vastly improve.

  132. Alden says:
    @Achmed E. Newman

    Whites have been paying to raise black criminal children much much longer than 55 years. The mid 1960s LBJ communist Jewish front man welfare laws were nothing more than federal
    welfare laws piled on top of state and county welfare systems that had existed for decades and even centuries.

    Please Achmed, stop reading Conservative lies and misinformation. It’s no more truthful than liberal lies and misinformation.

  133. Alden says:
    @Buffalo Joe

    There’s something called WIC. Women infants and children food coupons. They are in addition to the regular food stamps. WIC is for pregnant women and kids up to age 5 I think. It’s coupons for nutritious food, not just food. Milk cheese protein rich peanut butter there’s some kind of list. WIC’s been around for decades. It’s very popular with just over the border illegal immigrants who are pregnant or have kids under 5.

    So in addition to WIC the women in the study got \$300 a month to spend on lottery tickets and malt liquor for the baby daddy.

    I’m sure the name of the program will soon be changed to PPIC at the behest of the trans lobby. Pregnant persons infants and children.

    100, 150, 200 years ago one of the biggest arguments for relief as it was called was that poor kids should stay with their poor parents instead of going to orphanages. And if their mothers were still alive the mothers should get paid by the state to stay home and care for small kids instead of going out to work to supplement the starvation wages of the fathers.

    Welfare’s nothing new. We’ve had it in since the 1640s or even earlier.

  134. @AnotherDad

    They have no place in Western Societies.

  135. J.Ross says:
    @Ian Smith

    You’re technically correct about the normal meaning of the term but I fear that discussion is pointless on the question of the limitation of government and my flub is the best phrasing. Almost every German, Jew, Chinese, and Indian accepts totalitarianism at a level beyond discussion. They can play with concepts fluently but the needle won’t move. The WIERDos who feel equally strongly about not being dominated are similarly able to discuss Kant as correctly and as uselessly as anyone but are not accepting the expansion of government by persuasion.

    • Replies: @Ian Smith
  136. Ian Smith says:
    @J.Ross

    Please understand I’m not a National Bolshevik or anything. I DO think that libertarianism is something that occupies to much time in our minds. Let’s secure a future for white children and then we can argue about the gold standard and flat tax.

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