‹ First  < 3 4 5 6 > 
 
   
 

Sam Harris wrong on race

 
GAD
 
Avatar
 
 
GAD
Total Posts:  17539
Joined  15-02-2008
 
 
 
14 January 2019 22:30
 
burt - 14 January 2019 09:53 PM

For those interested in digging into details and references: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Heritability_of_IQ

There are many points there that you seem to have argued against or said were false, so it would seem things are not so black and white as you have made them out to be. That includes between-group differences where the arguments against genetic differences seem anecdotal e.g it could be other factors, environment etc. It is also interesting that in any other discussion of genetics there is little debate that genes dictate traits but for IQ it suddenly becomes a special case.

 
 
Jan_CAN
 
Avatar
 
 
Jan_CAN
Total Posts:  3315
Joined  21-10-2016
 
 
 
15 January 2019 00:36
 
GAD - 14 January 2019 10:30 PM

It is also interesting that in any other discussion of genetics there is little debate that genes dictate traits but for IQ it suddenly becomes a special case.

The IQ test wars: why screening for intelligence is still so controversial
https://theconversation.com/the-iq-test-wars-why-screening-for-intelligence-is-still-so-controversial-81428

“Despite the hype, the relevance, usefulness, and legitimacy of the IQ test is still hotly debated among educators, social scientists, and hard scientists. To understand why, it’s important to understand the history underpinning the birth, development, and expansion of the IQ test – a history that includes the use of IQ tests to further marginalise ethnic minorities and poor communities.”

 

 
 
TheAnal_lyticPhilosopher
 
Avatar
 
 
TheAnal_lyticPhilosopher
Total Posts:  865
Joined  13-02-2017
 
 
 
15 January 2019 03:28
 

I don’t think details and references is the problem in this debate.  Just the opposite, in fact.  It’s the conceptual creep of lay intuitions into technical issues, not a lack of technical details, that keeps the debate alive.  I tried to make this clear in my own heritability-IQ essay on Klein and Harris, and I’d try to make it clear here, but experience tells me there is no way to dislodge people from their lay intuitions about heritability, genetic causes, and traits.  As long as those intuitions exist, selection will favor supporting them, for there is no lack of references on either side from which to find support.

Instead of offering new references, I’ll just note for posterity that this debate has been going on in psychology—and I stress it goes on nowhere else—for roughly 50 years, starting about a decade after Falconer included his derivations for Lush’s idea of “between-groups” heritability in his 1960 textbook, an idea that was dropped from quantitative genetics shortly thereafter because the “equation” for it amounts to a tautology; because the concept itself is fundamentally flawed.  But among psychologists the dead idea lives on.  Like a zombie it rises again each time you knock it down.  As far as I can tell, the zombie of heritability and the genetic causes of differences between groups will live on as long as lay intuitions about probability, genes and causes animate it. 

This debate may be the only one in science where non-experts in a different field tell experts in their own how to use their own technical tools, but there is it: a self-selecting and devoted faction of psychologists has been telling quantitative geneticists how to use their own concepts for decades.  To anyone willing to become embroiled in the details of this debate, at least remember that.  Despite what the acolytes of Jensen would have you believe, genetics—quantitative or otherwise—has long since moved on and is currently working on the new tools that will help us pose these questions correctly, then possibly answer them.  At least that is what the geneticists themselves are telling us through the clamor of these self-selecting psychologists.

Instead of fighting the zombie reanimation of a dead idea, I think discussion should refocus on the moral context that ultimately gives this debate its power.  In other words, instead of arguing “the science,” we should be asking: what should we do whenever our scientific knowledge suggests that our moral intuitions are, if not wrong per se, then at least problematic?  Or put another way: what is the relationship between what is the case and what we ought to do?  At the end of the day, I think everyone can agree those are the real stakes in this debate, not so much the science itself.  So perhaps we should focus on that issue while the science takes its course.  For at the end of the day, that’s where we might end up anyway. 

[ Edited: 15 January 2019 05:29 by TheAnal_lyticPhilosopher]
 
burt
 
Avatar
 
 
burt
Total Posts:  15809
Joined  17-12-2006
 
 
 
15 January 2019 08:23
 
TheAnal_lyticPhilosopher - 15 January 2019 03:28 AM

I don’t think details and references is the problem in this debate.  Just the opposite, in fact.  It’s the conceptual creep of lay intuitions into technical issues, not a lack of technical details, that keeps the debate alive.  I tried to make this clear in my own heritability-IQ essay on Klein and Harris, and I’d try to make it clear here, but experience tells me there is no way to dislodge people from their lay intuitions about heritability, genetic causes, and traits.  As long as those intuitions exist, selection will favor supporting them, for there is no lack of references on either side from which to find support.

Instead of offering new references, I’ll just note for posterity that this debate has been going on in psychology—and I stress it goes on nowhere else—for roughly 50 years, starting about a decade after Falconer included his derivations for Lush’s idea of “between-groups” heritability in his 1960 textbook, an idea that was dropped from quantitative genetics shortly thereafter because the “equation” for it amounts to a tautology; because the concept itself is fundamentally flawed.  But among psychologists the dead idea lives on.  Like a zombie it rises again each time you knock it down.  As far as I can tell, the zombie of heritability and the genetic causes of differences between groups will live on as long as lay intuitions about probability, genes and causes animate it. 

This debate may be the only one in science where non-experts in a different field tell experts in their own how to use their own technical tools, but there is it: a self-selecting and devoted faction of psychologists has been telling quantitative geneticists how to use their own concepts for decades.  To anyone willing to become embroiled in the details of this debate, at least remember that.  Despite what the acolytes of Jensen would have you believe, genetics—quantitative or otherwise—has long since moved on and is currently working on the new tools that will help us pose these questions correctly, then possibly answer them.  At least that is what the geneticists themselves are telling us through the clamor of these self-selecting psychologists.

Instead of fighting the zombie reanimation of a dead idea, I think discussion should refocus on the moral context that ultimately gives this debate its power.  In other words, instead of arguing “the science,” we should be asking: what should we do whenever our scientific knowledge suggests that our moral intuitions are, if not wrong per se, then at least problematic?  Or put another way: what is the relationship between what is the case and what we ought to do?  At the end of the day, I think everyone can agree those are the real stakes in this debate, not so much the science itself.  So perhaps we should focus on that issue while the science takes its course.  For at the end of the day, that’s where we might end up anyway.

Good points. The main reason I posted the link was that it indicates how much smoke there is obscuring things. When one has an empirical instrument and gets strange results from using it, it is pretty dumb be insist on the results rather then questioning the adequacy of the instrument.

 
GAD
 
Avatar
 
 
GAD
Total Posts:  17539
Joined  15-02-2008
 
 
 
15 January 2019 08:30
 
TheAnal_lyticPhilosopher - 15 January 2019 03:28 AM

Instead of fighting the zombie reanimation of a dead idea, I think discussion should refocus on the moral context that ultimately gives this debate its power.  In other words, instead of arguing “the science,” we should be asking: what should we do whenever our scientific knowledge suggests that our moral intuitions are, if not wrong per se, then at least problematic?  Or put another way: what is the relationship between what is the case and what we ought to do?  At the end of the day, I think everyone can agree those are the real stakes in this debate, not so much the science itself.  So perhaps we should focus on that issue while the science takes its course.  For at the end of the day, that’s where we might end up anyway.

As you state the science isn’t as black or white as suggested, but at the end of the day it is either true or not true and what does morality have to do with that. If it is not true then we will have new knowledge of genetics that can be attributed to the evil white race and their racism and if it is true then it will attributed to the evil white race and their racism and disregarded. This is why I’ve stated many times on this subject that there is no use for such knowledge other then who gets to call who racist.

 
 
brazen4
 
Avatar
 
 
brazen4
Total Posts:  184
Joined  09-08-2017
 
 
 
15 January 2019 13:38
 

More like, who gets to call who, stupid or dumb, etc. This whole thread has been so well interacted that I can only keep up to a minimal degree. What I take away from it is that intelligence is still being defined. One of the issues I see is that it brings up social status issues and that is a sure fire hot button emotional quagmire. Thanks to all who have put in an honest effort to unwind/unpack the topic.

 
Abel Dean
 
Avatar
 
 
Abel Dean
Total Posts:  427
Joined  03-11-2017
 
 
 
15 January 2019 20:06
 
Jan_CAN - 15 January 2019 12:36 AM
GAD - 14 January 2019 10:30 PM

It is also interesting that in any other discussion of genetics there is little debate that genes dictate traits but for IQ it suddenly becomes a special case.

The IQ test wars: why screening for intelligence is still so controversial
https://theconversation.com/the-iq-test-wars-why-screening-for-intelligence-is-still-so-controversial-81428

“Despite the hype, the relevance, usefulness, and legitimacy of the IQ test is still hotly debated among educators, social scientists, and hard scientists. To understand why, it’s important to understand the history underpinning the birth, development, and expansion of the IQ test – a history that includes the use of IQ tests to further marginalise ethnic minorities and poor communities.”

The claim within that quote is in fact true, and that should sound an alarm. Imagine if someone had written,

“Despite the hype, the relevance, usefulness, legitimacy of the theory of relativity is still hotly debated among educators, social scientists, and hard scientists. To understand why, it’s important to understand how the theory was used to mercilessly obliterate two Japanese cities.”

Luckily this isn’t true, but it could be. All it takes is a large number of influential authorities thinking with their hearts. Intelligence researchers on every side of the race debate are constantly at odds with the moralistic fallacy and morally motivated thinking among those outside the field. The metric of IQ has more relevance and more predictive validity than any other metric within the science of psychology. The morality of how it is applied is an important question and is very much a separate question from the relevance, usefulness, or legitimacy of the science. Those two questions should not blend together, as though we should doubt the science of IQ because we can be racist or eugenicist with it.

 
burt
 
Avatar
 
 
burt
Total Posts:  15809
Joined  17-12-2006
 
 
 
15 January 2019 21:16
 
Abel Dean - 15 January 2019 08:06 PM
Jan_CAN - 15 January 2019 12:36 AM
GAD - 14 January 2019 10:30 PM

It is also interesting that in any other discussion of genetics there is little debate that genes dictate traits but for IQ it suddenly becomes a special case.

The IQ test wars: why screening for intelligence is still so controversial
https://theconversation.com/the-iq-test-wars-why-screening-for-intelligence-is-still-so-controversial-81428

“Despite the hype, the relevance, usefulness, and legitimacy of the IQ test is still hotly debated among educators, social scientists, and hard scientists. To understand why, it’s important to understand the history underpinning the birth, development, and expansion of the IQ test – a history that includes the use of IQ tests to further marginalise ethnic minorities and poor communities.”

The claim within that quote is in fact true, and that should sound an alarm. Imagine if someone had written,

“Despite the hype, the relevance, usefulness, legitimacy of the theory of relativity is still hotly debated among educators, social scientists, and hard scientists. To understand why, it’s important to understand how the theory was used to mercilessly obliterate two Japanese cities.”

Luckily this isn’t true, but it could be. All it takes is a large number of influential authorities thinking with their hearts. Intelligence researchers on every side of the race debate are constantly at odds with the moralistic fallacy and morally motivated thinking among those outside the field. The metric of IQ has more relevance and more predictive validity than any other metric within the science of psychology. The morality of how it is applied is an important question and is very much a separate question from the relevance, usefulness, or legitimacy of the science. Those two questions should not blend together, as though we should doubt the science of IQ because we can be racist or eugenicist with it.

Your analogy is false. There could never be such a debate in physics, or in physics education. To assume so, or even present it as an attempted analogy shows a lack of understanding of science. You keep reiterating your same old assertions. The “science” of IQ is weak, uncertain, and uses an instrument that is adapted to one group. And nothing you try to say can alter that fact.

 
Abel Dean
 
Avatar
 
 
Abel Dean
Total Posts:  427
Joined  03-11-2017
 
 
 
15 January 2019 21:20
 
burt - 15 January 2019 09:16 PM
Abel Dean - 15 January 2019 08:06 PM
Jan_CAN - 15 January 2019 12:36 AM
GAD - 14 January 2019 10:30 PM

It is also interesting that in any other discussion of genetics there is little debate that genes dictate traits but for IQ it suddenly becomes a special case.

The IQ test wars: why screening for intelligence is still so controversial
https://theconversation.com/the-iq-test-wars-why-screening-for-intelligence-is-still-so-controversial-81428

“Despite the hype, the relevance, usefulness, and legitimacy of the IQ test is still hotly debated among educators, social scientists, and hard scientists. To understand why, it’s important to understand the history underpinning the birth, development, and expansion of the IQ test – a history that includes the use of IQ tests to further marginalise ethnic minorities and poor communities.”

The claim within that quote is in fact true, and that should sound an alarm. Imagine if someone had written,

“Despite the hype, the relevance, usefulness, legitimacy of the theory of relativity is still hotly debated among educators, social scientists, and hard scientists. To understand why, it’s important to understand how the theory was used to mercilessly obliterate two Japanese cities.”

Luckily this isn’t true, but it could be. All it takes is a large number of influential authorities thinking with their hearts. Intelligence researchers on every side of the race debate are constantly at odds with the moralistic fallacy and morally motivated thinking among those outside the field. The metric of IQ has more relevance and more predictive validity than any other metric within the science of psychology. The morality of how it is applied is an important question and is very much a separate question from the relevance, usefulness, or legitimacy of the science. Those two questions should not blend together, as though we should doubt the science of IQ because we can be racist or eugenicist with it.

Your analogy is false. There could never be such a debate in physics, or in physics education. To assume so, or even present it as an attempted analogy shows a lack of understanding of science. You keep reiterating your same old assertions. The “science” of IQ is weak, uncertain, and uses an instrument that is adapted to one group. And nothing you try to say can alter that fact.

If the “science” of IQ is weak, uncertain, and uses an instrument that is adapted to one group, then it is a respectable claim that does not obviously depend on either the moralistic fallacy or morally motivated thinking. It is the kind of claim that I can tolerate, though I would disagree with it. I can not tolerate nearly so well the explicitly moralistic fallacy that the cited author correctly attributes to educators, social scientists, and hard scientists at large.

 
TheAnal_lyticPhilosopher
 
Avatar
 
 
TheAnal_lyticPhilosopher
Total Posts:  865
Joined  13-02-2017
 
 
 
16 January 2019 03:46
 

Thanks, burt, and right.  In the assessment course I took, there was considerable discussion about the adequacy of the instruments we were learning on (the IQ test was one).  I just don’t get this faction of psychologists who claim to speak for the consensus and its rock solid scientific foundation when, in fact, there is at best an ambivalent consensus and no rock solid foundation.  Coming from the field itself one learns this; it’s part and parcel of the training.  Yet these race and IQ people—Harris included—mouth these ‘findings’ as so-called certainties.  If my n=1 is indicative, practitioners in the field are far more circumspect.

GAD

There is no shortage of people who call whites racist, just as there is no shortage of people who call blacks dumber than whites.  But as ASD and I came to realize in the Klein thread a while back, the issue is quite complex.  Specifically: how does one differentiate a claim that in one context is racist from the identical claim that in another is not?  There’s got to be an illocutionary effect to a statement, one that goes to the heart of issue in this thread.  Context matters.  In this debate, moral context matters even more.  I’m proposing we focus on that, not on the truth or not of specific scientific claims—claims which are, despite the lies told by partisans, highly contested on the scientific grounds themselves.

Mr. Dean himself would be a welcome participant in this conversation, even, perhaps, one of the most valuable participants here (likewise for someone of color).  But so far he seems uninterested in having it. 

 
burt
 
Avatar
 
 
burt
Total Posts:  15809
Joined  17-12-2006
 
 
 
16 January 2019 07:49
 
Abel Dean - 15 January 2019 09:20 PM
burt - 15 January 2019 09:16 PM
Abel Dean - 15 January 2019 08:06 PM
Jan_CAN - 15 January 2019 12:36 AM
GAD - 14 January 2019 10:30 PM

It is also interesting that in any other discussion of genetics there is little debate that genes dictate traits but for IQ it suddenly becomes a special case.

The IQ test wars: why screening for intelligence is still so controversial
https://theconversation.com/the-iq-test-wars-why-screening-for-intelligence-is-still-so-controversial-81428

“Despite the hype, the relevance, usefulness, and legitimacy of the IQ test is still hotly debated among educators, social scientists, and hard scientists. To understand why, it’s important to understand the history underpinning the birth, development, and expansion of the IQ test – a history that includes the use of IQ tests to further marginalise ethnic minorities and poor communities.”

The claim within that quote is in fact true, and that should sound an alarm. Imagine if someone had written,

“Despite the hype, the relevance, usefulness, legitimacy of the theory of relativity is still hotly debated among educators, social scientists, and hard scientists. To understand why, it’s important to understand how the theory was used to mercilessly obliterate two Japanese cities.”

Luckily this isn’t true, but it could be. All it takes is a large number of influential authorities thinking with their hearts. Intelligence researchers on every side of the race debate are constantly at odds with the moralistic fallacy and morally motivated thinking among those outside the field. The metric of IQ has more relevance and more predictive validity than any other metric within the science of psychology. The morality of how it is applied is an important question and is very much a separate question from the relevance, usefulness, or legitimacy of the science. Those two questions should not blend together, as though we should doubt the science of IQ because we can be racist or eugenicist with it.

Your analogy is false. There could never be such a debate in physics, or in physics education. To assume so, or even present it as an attempted analogy shows a lack of understanding of science. You keep reiterating your same old assertions. The “science” of IQ is weak, uncertain, and uses an instrument that is adapted to one group. And nothing you try to say can alter that fact.

If the “science” of IQ is weak, uncertain, and uses an instrument that is adapted to one group, then it is a respectable claim that does not obviously depend on either the moralistic fallacy or morally motivated thinking. It is the kind of claim that I can tolerate, though I would disagree with it. I can not tolerate nearly so well the explicitly moralistic fallacy that the cited author correctly attributes to educators, social scientists, and hard scientists at large.

But as far as I’m concerned you have zero credibility so what you can or cannot tolerate is irrelevant to me, your opinion is worthless to me.

 
LadyJane
 
Avatar
 
 
LadyJane
Total Posts:  3292
Joined  26-03-2013
 
 
 
16 January 2019 08:48
 

I think it’s pretty clear when we’re dealing with a transient.  Patrons stroll in here all the time presenting ideas that are wildly off the map.  Any religious craziness or holocaust denials or other such nuttery is usually fairly short lived, depending on how much attention it’s given, so there’s little reason to prolong all the fuss. The question is why some of the regulars want to give so much power to someone who isn’t even the author of this nearly two year old thread.

 
 
GAD
 
Avatar
 
 
GAD
Total Posts:  17539
Joined  15-02-2008
 
 
 
16 January 2019 08:55
 
LadyJane - 16 January 2019 08:48 AM

I think it’s pretty clear when we’re dealing with a transient.  Patrons stroll in here all the time presenting ideas that are wildly off the map.  Any religious craziness or holocaust denials or other such nuttery is usually fairly short lived, depending on how much attention it’s given, so there’s little reason to prolong all the fuss. The question is why some of the regulars want to give so much power to someone who isn’t even the author of this nearly two year old thread.

What power? We are having a conversation, why does that bother you? We follow where the conversations are and go, thread purity is an admin hangup.

 
 
Jan_CAN
 
Avatar
 
 
Jan_CAN
Total Posts:  3315
Joined  21-10-2016
 
 
 
16 January 2019 09:03
 
LadyJane - 16 January 2019 08:48 AM

I think it’s pretty clear when we’re dealing with a transient.  Patrons stroll in here all the time presenting ideas that are wildly off the map.  Any religious craziness or holocaust denials or other such nuttery is usually fairly short lived, depending on how much attention it’s given, so there’s little reason to prolong all the fuss. The question is why some of the regulars want to give so much power to someone who isn’t even the author of this nearly two year old thread.

I see your point and recognize that responding to certain types of posts just ‘prolongs the agony’ and provides incentive for a poster to further a negative agenda.  On the other hand, although it is unlikely that minds will be changed, there is perhaps a small chance that they could rethink their position.  Also, that others out there listening, that are on the fence in some of their views, could be influenced in another direction.  I don’t know if I’m correct in this, but it seems that the blatantly nutty are better ignored, but that sometimes those who express themselves well and therefore might be more convincing should be challenged.

 

 
 
LadyJane
 
Avatar
 
 
LadyJane
Total Posts:  3292
Joined  26-03-2013
 
 
 
16 January 2019 09:26
 
GAD - 16 January 2019 08:55 AM

What power? We are having a conversation, why does that bother you? We follow where the conversations are and go, thread purity is an admin hangup.

You can continue oscillating between the two insults you seem stuck on or accept the fact that I’m capable of making observations as a regular poster.

Jan_CAN - 16 January 2019 09:03 AM

I see your point and recognize that responding to certain types of posts just ‘prolongs the agony’ and provides incentive for a poster to further a negative agenda.  On the other hand, although it is unlikely that minds will be changed, there is perhaps a small chance that they could rethink their position.  Also, that others out there listening, that are on the fence in some of their views, could be influenced in another direction.  I don’t know if I’m correct in this, but it seems that the blatantly nutty are better ignored, but that sometimes those who express themselves well and therefore might be more convincing should be challenged.

And when the challenge has run its course it’s mostly blowhard pontificating.  Without honest feedback people venture into these threads with a false sense of superiority.  I’ve seen it happen and man is it a rude awakening when they learn people don’t adore them like they think they do.  As though it’s not possible to lose respect for those we once admired.  I think that’s why it’s a mistake to ride on reputation alone.

 
 
‹ First  < 3 4 5 6 >