Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Levitt on IQ

The attempts by do-gooders to dismiss the evidence against racial differences in IQ are often amusing for their desperation. They almost invariably come up with claims and ideas that have been very thoroughly raked over long ago and are too arrogant to suspect that they might learn something by checking the research on the subject (Rushton's demolition of Gould's "Mismeasure of Man" is a handy introduction to some of the more common issues). In his Freakonomics blog on the New York Times, however, economist Steven D. Levitt has come up with something that is at least original -- though at the price of absurdity. He reports a study in which he studied the IQs of one-year-olds. And guess what? At that age there were no differences between blacks and whites.

The idea that one-year-olds can have their IQs reliably measured is of course a joke and Steve Sailer satirizes it well. Steve does not go the full monte, however, so I will -- thus making me perhaps the most incorrect blogger on the net. I regret if it loses me readers but I have never shrunk from telling the full truth.

The fact is that if Levitt had included one-year-old chimpanzees in his group of infants, he WOULD have found some differences -- in favour of chimpanzees. Chimps grow up faster than humans so are capable at an earlier age -- but at the price of a lower final intelligence and a shorter lifespan. Generally speaking, the higher the final IQ, the longer it takes to reach its peak. If the test used by Levitt had really measured IQ, he would almost certainly have found the white children at that age to be LESS intelligent than black children. Blacks do reach puberty earlier than whites. Levitt was the simpleton for being unable even to form a reasonable hypothesis for his study.

The outrage brigade will have stopped reading by now but I must make clear that I am NOT equating blacks with chimpanzees. Blacks are clearly vastly more intelligent than chimpanzees. But comparisons between primates can sometimes help illuminate general principles. Leftists have long claimed to find great significance for human beings in the behaviour of the "peaceful" Bonobos, for instance. But more on that some other time.

Finally, let me add a routine caveat: People have a tendency to see statements about groups as applying to all members of that group. That is rarely so and is certainly not true in this instance. There is no inconsistency in saying that blacks as a whole are less intelligent while also acknowledging that some individual blacks are very intelligent. What is true of most need not be true of all.



Jacksonian has a long post which argues that Hillary is a sociopath (or psychopath in blunter language). He makes his case fairly well. There is no doubt whatever that Hil is married to a psychopath -- someone plausible but devoid of any conscience, morality, principle or guiding philosophy -- someone to whom a lie comes as easily as the truth.

Hillary puzzle? "For seven years, the left has been up in arms about President Bush's aggressive foreign policy, his secrecy, his partisanship, and his expansive claims on executive power. It's odd, then, that they're prepared to nominate Hillary Clinton to carry the party into the 2008 elections. The problem with Hillary Clinton is two-fold: First, she's likely to be as bad or worse than Bush on all of those issues, and second, she's the one Democrat the Republicans still have a chance to beat."

Mad Muslim airline pilot. Don't fly Garuda: "The Indonesian captain in this year's Garuda passenger jet disaster ignored 15 automated warning signals and his own co-pilot shouting at him not to land the aircraft in the seconds before the crash, investigators have found. Senior pilot Marwoto Komar was so fixated on landing the Boeing 737-400 that he ignored pleas from his co-pilot to perform a "go around', or second approach, the report by Indonesia's National Transportation Safety Committee says. The report notes that Captain Komar was singing and engaging in non-essential conversation during the crucial descent from 10,000 feet to 4000 feet, and that during flight simulator and pilot line testing last year and in 2005, the 45-year-old was found by his check pilots to have made landing approaches that were too fast."

BBC joins the British crime coverup: "BBC News is to cut coverage of crime stories as part of its cost-saving plans. Up to 490 jobs are to go in the department as the television, radio and on-line operations are integrated, with 155 million pounds due to be saved during the next five years. Morale within the BBC is said to be at an all-time low after Mark Thompson, the Director-General, announced last week that 2,500 jobs would be lost across the corporation. Helen Boaden, the director of BBC News, admitted that staff were "unhappy and anxious about some of the efficiencies we are having to make". Explaining where the cuts would fall, she said: "We are talking about deploying fewer stories. For instance, I think there's some middle-ranking crime stories we could do without or think harder about the way we do them."

Dutch worse than the French: "Things have gotten so bad in the Netherlands that even French intellectuals are now accusing us of "unacceptable cowardice" because of the way Ayaan Hirsi Ali was treated recently. Several intellectuals wrote an open letter, which was published in the French newspaper Lib‚ration. In it, Pascal Bruckner, Luc Ferry, Alain Finkielkraut, Andr‚ Glucksmann and Bernard-Henri Levy don't just accuse the Dutch of cowardly behavior, they also call on their own government to offer Ayaan Hirsi Ali French nationality. They write that "the Netherlands closes its eyes for a world in which terrorism, intolerance and totalitarianism don't care about borders."

Advanced missiles from Iran have already been fired at U.S. helicopters in Iraq: "The U.S. military has reported that Iran has smuggled advanced surface-to-air missiles into Iraq for the purpose of downing U.S. combat aircraft. Officials said Iran has transported man-portable SAM systems to Shi'ite allies in Iraq. They said some of the missiles have already been fired at U.S. Army helicopters. "It's a real concern, and it's something that we're dealing with," U.S. Army Col. Daniel Shanahan said. "Right now we've got the best systems in the world, and we've got technology behind us." Shanahan did not identify the Iranian missiles. Over the last 18 months, Iran was said to have received the SA-18 Igla-S man-portable missile from Russia."

Violence in Iraq drops sharply, says Iraqi Ministry: "Violence in Iraq has dropped by 70 percent since the end of June, when U.S. forces completed their build-up of 30,000 extra troops to stabilize the war-torn country, the Interior Ministry said on Monday. Washington began dispatching reinforcements to Iraq in February to try to buy Iraq's feuding political leaders time to reach a political accommodation to end violence between majority Shi'ites and minority Sunni Arabs that has killed tens of thousands and forced millions from their homes. While the leaders have failed to agree on key laws aimed at reconciling the country's warring sects, the troop buildup has succeeded in quelling violence. Interior Ministry spokesman Major-General Abdul-Karim Khalaf told reporters that there had been a 70 percent decrease in violence countrywide in the three months from July to September over the previous quarter".


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"Why should the German be interested in the liberation of the Jew, if the Jew is not interested in the liberation of the German?... We recognize in Judaism, therefore, a general anti-social element of the present time... In the final analysis, the emancipation of the Jews is the emancipation of mankind from Judaism.... Indeed, in North America, the practical domination of Judaism over the Christian world has achieved as its unambiguous and normal expression that the preaching of the Gospel itself and the Christian ministry have become articles of trade... Money is the jealous god of Israel, in face of which no other god may exist". Who said that? Hitler? No. It was Karl Marx. See also here and here and here.

The Big Lie of the late 20th century was that Nazism was Rightist. It was in fact typical of the Leftism of its day. It was only to the Right of Stalin's Communism. The very word "Nazi" is a German abbreviation for "National Socialist" (Nationalsozialistisch) and the full name of Hitler's political party (translated) was "The National Socialist German Workers' Party".


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