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Impact of slavery on IQ

 
Abel Dean
 
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Abel Dean
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30 December 2018 09:56
 
nonverbal - 30 December 2018 09:37 AM
Abel Dean, to nv - 30 December 2018 09:21 AM

. . .

If you doubt the accuracy of the scores, then I expect that is the wrong approach regardless. If we were to discover that there is something greatly systemically wrong with both Wicherts et al.‘s and Lynn et al.‘s analyses of the diverse sets of tests, then it does not follow that we should therefore ignore them. They remain the best analyses we have, the best reflection of the probable truth, and we have no reason except ideological dogma to assume equivalence of intelligence among the races, be it genetic or completely not genetic. It would be much like assuming that all races have equal average bodily height, or declaring uncertainty, because we found something potentially wrong with the way height is measured all over the world. We don’t do this for height, and yet we want to pick apart the data and find any reason to maintain our belief in intelligence equivalence among the races. We hate the data. Not just the claimed cause of the data, but the data itself.

It’s not so much that sort of belief itself, as it is simple respect. How many past psychological positions have been debunked? Plenty, obviously. For instance, if you were the mother of an autistic child during the 1960s, you were likely to be branded a refrigerator. Simple respect took a beating. Overconfidence in psychological positions seems still to be the order of the day, most unfortunately.

Not just psychology, but how many other scientific positions have been debunked throughout history? I think it would be nevertheless an error to therefore cast much more doubt on the germ theory of disease, or on the theory of evolution, or on the general theory of relativity, or on the the theory of the greenhouse effect. Our certainty needs to be much more a matter of the data, and the science of intelligence stands on firm vast empirical ground. What is the alternative to correct thinking on such matters? Wishful thinking? Dogmas? Political ideologies? Good moral politics of any sort needs to start with acceptance of the probable objective realities of the human species, not with delusions. As of now, the far right (aka Alt Right) has a monopoly on the probable science of racial differences, and I see this as a big problem. The better moral thinkers of the world can take the same science in a better direction, but instead they deny it, denounce it, dismiss it, or some combination thereof. How effective will this tactic be when molecular genetics proves racial hereditarianism correct beyond reasonable doubt? The far right will throw a victory celebration, with fascism leading their parade.

 
burt
 
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burt
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30 December 2018 10:06
 
Abel Dean - 30 December 2018 09:21 AM
nonverbal - 30 December 2018 08:00 AM
Abel Dean, to Burt - 29 December 2018 12:14 PM

Richard Lynn and his colleagues concluded an average IQ of 70 for black Africans. Some researchers have claimed a higher average—Jelte Wicherts and his colleagues concluded an average of 80—but this remains a low value. I expect that the value of Lynn et al. is more likely, in part because their value is close to the best fit lines of the scatter plots of IQ vs. GDP per capita (regardless of the causal direction) and of IQ vs. skin color (perhaps the most offensive correlation in science). If a value much higher than 70 was the truth for black Africans, then it would be an outlier. Everyone agrees on the low IQ of black Africans, from 20 to 30 points lower than whites, and anything else would be anomalous, so the question should not be whether it is true, but, “why?” It could be due to genetics, environment, or some mixture of both. Genetics looks more likely at this point, because the pattern follows black Africans wherever they emigrate all over the world (after a few generations, not the first generation, which skews high due to the brain drain immigration pattern), they have smaller cranial capacities, it is on line with the skin color correlation, they have low frequency of genetic variants that code for intelligence (among the few hundred we have found so far), they have low IQs even after adoption into white families, and it is what we expect from the validation of Spearman’s hypothesis: a strong positive correlation exists between the black-white IQ gap of tests and the heritability of those tests. This is not the way it should be, but it is the probable truth one way or the other, not to be easily dismissed.

You brought up the objection that blacks can be subdivided by ancestry into different average IQ values. I believe it, but it does not follow that the differences are therefore cultural only. I don’t know about the British data, but I know that black Africans who emigrate to America tend to have a much higher average IQ than black Americans at large. They tend to go to grad school and become doctors and so on. Does it follow that the billion black Africans within Africa have the same average IQ as these select immigrants? Not so. To legally migrate from poor African nations to America requires being in the top tier of one’s own IQ distribution. It requires graduating secondary school, having no criminal record, being a long-term planner, and being exceptionally rich.

Again, this is not the way it should be, but, if the cause of racial intelligence differences is mostly genetic, then a solution is immediately at hand. This is the dawning of the age of Aquarius CRISPR. Of secondary importance is that we need not blame intractable white racism for all sorts of racial inequality in the world. That is why we need to be real about the true causes, even if it means agreeing with scientific racism or whatever.

That (above boldfaced) seems like a pretty outrageous claim. Can you link a book or article(s) Wicherts has written on the subject of Western-style intelligence testing of Africans? For instance, I’m curious about translations not only of somewhat concrete words, but abstract concepts involved, as well. And how are the tests administered? Is it typically part of normal school-day routines, or is it perhaps somewhat invasive? That is, How is Western-style intelligence testing received by the people being tested? How are individuals chosen to be tested? Do potential test participants have an opportunity to decline being tested?

Wicherts et al. and Lynn et al. each wrote many dueling papers on the matter of black African IQ, with Wicherts et al. representing the environmentalist (anti-racist) side of the debate (average IQ=80) and Lynn et al. representing the hereditarian (racist) side of the debate (average IQ=70). The paper of Wicherts et al. that kicked off the battle was:

Wicherts, Dolan and van der Mass, 2010, “The dangers of unsystematic selection methods and the representativeness of 46 samples of African test-takers.”

I can’t easily answer your questions, but you can find the full text of the paper online at this link if you would like leads to their sources so you can hunt down the answers:

http://www.iapsych.com/iqmr/fe/LinkedDocuments/wicherts2010c.pdf

Wicherts et al. accused Lynn et al. of biasing their selection of African IQ tests in favor of lower scores, whereas Lynn et al. accused Wicherts et al. of biasing their selection of African IQ tests in favor of higher scores.

It may be shocking to learn that the anti-racist side of the debate among intelligence researchers concludes an average IQ of 80 for black Africans, as though this is high, but this is the reality. Your true objection does not seem to be whether the scores are accurate but whether they are biased. The scores are unlikely to be extremely biased, because they are in line with correlates of intelligence including GDP per capita.

If you doubt the accuracy of the scores, then I expect that is the wrong approach regardless. If we were to discover that there is something greatly systemically wrong with both Wicherts et al.‘s and Lynn et al.‘s analyses of the diverse sets of tests, then it does not follow that we should therefore ignore them. They remain the best analyses we have, the best reflection of the probable truth, and we have no reason except ideological dogma to assume equivalence of intelligence among the races, be it genetic or completely not genetic. It would be much like assuming that all races have equal average bodily height, or declaring uncertainty, because we found something potentially wrong with the way height is measured all over the world. We don’t do this for height, and yet we want to pick apart the data and find any reason to maintain our belief in intelligence equivalence among the races. We hate the data. Not just the claimed cause of the data, but the data itself.

The main issue here is that IQ tests designed to be taken by people raised in a modern developed Western culture are not suitable for making assumptions about individuals who have been raised in a third world culture. I refer you to an older book, Foundations of Primitive Thought by C.R. Hallpike. Hallpike is somewhat shunned by many modern anthropologists, but his work is good and he makes a similar point, although not directly related to IQ testing. Rather, he uses a Piagetian framework for cognitive development and his argument is that people in primitive cultures in general do not progress beyond Piaget’s stage of concrete operations. He refers to data that seems to support this, and also show that there are cultural differences in when individuals achieve different Piagetian stages, for example, with the onset of abstract reasoning occurring later in undeveloped cultures. As I said, he does not correlate this with iQ. Rather he argues that in a primitive culture there is no need for the emergence of higher cognitive stages beyond concrete operational, that this need only arose as cultures became more literary and applying more emphasis on abstract thought. He is careful, however, to insist that this does not mean lower intelligence or any sort of cultural inferiority, indeed, that the West may have a problem with producing individuals who are whizzes at taking tests of abstract reasoning but who lack the sort of wisdom required for actually living a well rounded life, something which is found in abundance among people in primitive cultures.

There is related work by Luria carried out in the early 1930s on Kazak peasants indicating that they failed miserably on tests of logical thought; the sort emphasized on IQ tests. Their thought processes operated more along pragmatic lines and the sort of categories they thought with were not what we would call “logical.”

Anecdotally, I had a similar experience with a course in business mathematics, whose delivery I supervised (i.e., I didn’t teach the courses but was responsible for hiring those who did and monitoring their performance). My university had contracted to provide this course for a program in health care management that was designed for aboriginal Americans in the Canadian North. What I found was that the large majority of students in the course just didn’t seem to get mathematical ideas, and a great deal of extra help was necessary to get them through the course. They were not at all dumb (but likely, would have scored low on IQ tests) but the culture they came from didn’t emphasize any of the cognitive skills required to grasp mathematical ideas. So do you suggest that they were low IQ, hence their children needed to be genetically altered? 

Because that is what you are suggesting: that because there are measured differences on tests designed by and for educated Westerners, members of those groups who have lower average scores on these tests than do educated Westerners need to have their genes adjusted so that their children will do better on such tests. Do you really put so much weight on IQ tests?

P.S. I don’t know what my measured IQ is; the only time I ever took a test was 10th grade and afterward the school guidance counselors kept trying to point me to vocational training courses.

[ Edited: 30 December 2018 10:25 by burt]
 
nonverbal
 
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nonverbal
Total Posts:  1900
Joined  31-10-2015
 
 
 
30 December 2018 10:08
 
Abel Dean - 30 December 2018 09:56 AM
nonverbal - 30 December 2018 09:37 AM
Abel Dean, to nv - 30 December 2018 09:21 AM

. . .

If you doubt the accuracy of the scores, then I expect that is the wrong approach regardless. If we were to discover that there is something greatly systemically wrong with both Wicherts et al.‘s and Lynn et al.‘s analyses of the diverse sets of tests, then it does not follow that we should therefore ignore them. They remain the best analyses we have, the best reflection of the probable truth, and we have no reason except ideological dogma to assume equivalence of intelligence among the races, be it genetic or completely not genetic. It would be much like assuming that all races have equal average bodily height, or declaring uncertainty, because we found something potentially wrong with the way height is measured all over the world. We don’t do this for height, and yet we want to pick apart the data and find any reason to maintain our belief in intelligence equivalence among the races. We hate the data. Not just the claimed cause of the data, but the data itself.

It’s not so much that sort of belief itself, as it is simple respect. How many past psychological positions have been debunked? Plenty, obviously. For instance, if you were the mother of an autistic child during the 1960s, you were likely to be branded a refrigerator. Simple respect took a beating. Overconfidence in psychological positions seems still to be the order of the day, most unfortunately.

Not just psychology, but how many other scientific positions have been debunked throughout history? I think it would be nevertheless an error to therefore cast much more doubt on the germ theory of disease, or on the theory of evolution, or on the general theory of relativity, or on the the theory of the greenhouse effect. Our certainty needs to be much more a matter of the data, and the science of intelligence stands on firm vast empirical ground. What is the alternative to correct thinking on such matters? Wishful thinking? Dogmas? Political ideologies? Good moral politics of any sort needs to start with acceptance of the probable objective realities of the human species, not with delusions. As of now, the far right (aka Alt Right) has a monopoly on the probable science of racial differences, and I see this as a big problem. The better moral thinkers of the world can take the same science in a better direction, but instead they deny it, denounce it, dismiss it, or some combination thereof. How effective will this tactic be when molecular genetics proves racial hereditarianism correct beyond reasonable doubt? The far right will throw a victory celebration, with fascism leading their parade.

I appreciate the link you provided in your previous post, and I’ll look at it before commenting further other than to say that, due to the nature of any psychological thesis, one deals with subjectivity as well as terms that are less than concrete. Skepticism need not take a back seat as it certainly does in cases where biochemical processes can be measured with repeatable precision.

 
 
GAD
 
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GAD
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30 December 2018 10:17
 
Abel Dean - 30 December 2018 05:43 AM
GAD - 29 December 2018 10:37 PM

Why wouldn’t IQ be related to genetics, everything else is. The issue that makes this topic taboo is that there is no positive use for such data.

A popular zealous ideology with roots in World War 2 makes it a taboo topic, not the lack of utility. Very many people in the world want no more race and class inequality. If the causes are all about genetics and if we are real about it, then it will be the easiest thing we can change in the age of CRISPR. Otherwise, it will be the exclusive domain of the rich. I expect that genetic engineering of humans will remain criminalized all over the world, and rich couples will go to an IVF clinic on a cruise ship in international waters just to get genetically-engineered superbabies with maximal intelligence, health, beauty and ambition, increasing the race gaps and class gaps exponentially further.

As I said, no positive usefulness.

 
 
Abel Dean
 
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Abel Dean
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30 December 2018 10:28
 
burt - 30 December 2018 10:06 AM
Abel Dean - 30 December 2018 09:21 AM
nonverbal - 30 December 2018 08:00 AM
Abel Dean, to Burt - 29 December 2018 12:14 PM

Richard Lynn and his colleagues concluded an average IQ of 70 for black Africans. Some researchers have claimed a higher average—Jelte Wicherts and his colleagues concluded an average of 80—but this remains a low value. I expect that the value of Lynn et al. is more likely, in part because their value is close to the best fit lines of the scatter plots of IQ vs. GDP per capita (regardless of the causal direction) and of IQ vs. skin color (perhaps the most offensive correlation in science). If a value much higher than 70 was the truth for black Africans, then it would be an outlier. Everyone agrees on the low IQ of black Africans, from 20 to 30 points lower than whites, and anything else would be anomalous, so the question should not be whether it is true, but, “why?” It could be due to genetics, environment, or some mixture of both. Genetics looks more likely at this point, because the pattern follows black Africans wherever they emigrate all over the world (after a few generations, not the first generation, which skews high due to the brain drain immigration pattern), they have smaller cranial capacities, it is on line with the skin color correlation, they have low frequency of genetic variants that code for intelligence (among the few hundred we have found so far), they have low IQs even after adoption into white families, and it is what we expect from the validation of Spearman’s hypothesis: a strong positive correlation exists between the black-white IQ gap of tests and the heritability of those tests. This is not the way it should be, but it is the probable truth one way or the other, not to be easily dismissed.

You brought up the objection that blacks can be subdivided by ancestry into different average IQ values. I believe it, but it does not follow that the differences are therefore cultural only. I don’t know about the British data, but I know that black Africans who emigrate to America tend to have a much higher average IQ than black Americans at large. They tend to go to grad school and become doctors and so on. Does it follow that the billion black Africans within Africa have the same average IQ as these select immigrants? Not so. To legally migrate from poor African nations to America requires being in the top tier of one’s own IQ distribution. It requires graduating secondary school, having no criminal record, being a long-term planner, and being exceptionally rich.

Again, this is not the way it should be, but, if the cause of racial intelligence differences is mostly genetic, then a solution is immediately at hand. This is the dawning of the age of Aquarius CRISPR. Of secondary importance is that we need not blame intractable white racism for all sorts of racial inequality in the world. That is why we need to be real about the true causes, even if it means agreeing with scientific racism or whatever.

That (above boldfaced) seems like a pretty outrageous claim. Can you link a book or article(s) Wicherts has written on the subject of Western-style intelligence testing of Africans? For instance, I’m curious about translations not only of somewhat concrete words, but abstract concepts involved, as well. And how are the tests administered? Is it typically part of normal school-day routines, or is it perhaps somewhat invasive? That is, How is Western-style intelligence testing received by the people being tested? How are individuals chosen to be tested? Do potential test participants have an opportunity to decline being tested?

Wicherts et al. and Lynn et al. each wrote many dueling papers on the matter of black African IQ, with Wicherts et al. representing the environmentalist (anti-racist) side of the debate (average IQ=80) and Lynn et al. representing the hereditarian (racist) side of the debate (average IQ=70). The paper of Wicherts et al. that kicked off the battle was:

Wicherts, Dolan and van der Mass, 2010, “The dangers of unsystematic selection methods and the representativeness of 46 samples of African test-takers.”

I can’t easily answer your questions, but you can find the full text of the paper online at this link if you would like leads to their sources so you can hunt down the answers:

http://www.iapsych.com/iqmr/fe/LinkedDocuments/wicherts2010c.pdf

Wicherts et al. accused Lynn et al. of biasing their selection of African IQ tests in favor of lower scores, whereas Lynn et al. accused Wicherts et al. of biasing their selection of African IQ tests in favor of higher scores.

It may be shocking to learn that the anti-racist side of the debate among intelligence researchers concludes an average IQ of 80 for black Africans, as though this is high, but this is the reality. Your true objection does not seem to be whether the scores are accurate but whether they are biased. The scores are unlikely to be extremely biased, because they are in line with correlates of intelligence including GDP per capita.

If you doubt the accuracy of the scores, then I expect that is the wrong approach regardless. If we were to discover that there is something greatly systemically wrong with both Wicherts et al.‘s and Lynn et al.‘s analyses of the diverse sets of tests, then it does not follow that we should therefore ignore them. They remain the best analyses we have, the best reflection of the probable truth, and we have no reason except ideological dogma to assume equivalence of intelligence among the races, be it genetic or completely not genetic. It would be much like assuming that all races have equal average bodily height, or declaring uncertainty, because we found something potentially wrong with the way height is measured all over the world. We don’t do this for height, and yet we want to pick apart the data and find any reason to maintain our belief in intelligence equivalence among the races. We hate the data. Not just the claimed cause of the data, but the data itself.

The main issue here is that IQ tests designed to be taken by people raised in a modern developed Western culture are not suitable for making assumptions about individuals who have been raised in a third world culture. I refer you to an older book, Foundations of Primitive Thought by C.R. Hallpike. Hallpike is somewhat shunned by many modern anthropologists, but his work is good and he makes a similar point, although not directly related to IQ testing. Rather, he uses a Piagetian framework for cognitive development and his argument is that people in primitive cultures in general do not progress beyond Piaget’s stage of concrete operations. He refers to data that seems to support this, and also show that there are cultural differences in when individuals achieve different Piagetian stages, for example, with the onset of abstract reasoning occurring later in undeveloped cultures. As I said, he does not correlate this with iQ. Rather he argues that in a primitive culture there is no need for the emergence of higher cognitive stages beyond concrete operational, that this need only arose as cultures became more literary and applying more emphasis on abstract thought. He is careful, however, to insist that this does not mean lower intelligence or any sort of cultural inferiority, indeed, that the West may have a problem with producing individuals who are whizzes at taking tests of abstract reasoning but who lack the sort of wisdom required for actually living a well rounded life, something which is found in abundance among people in primitive cultures.

There is related work by Luria carried out in the early 1930s on Kazak peasants indicating that they failed miserably on tests of logical thought; the sort emphasized on IQ tests. Their thought processes operated more along pragmatic lines and the sort of categories they thought with were not what we would call “logical.”

Anecdotally, I had a similar experience with a course in business mathematics, whose delivery I supervised (i.e., I didn’t teach the courses but was responsible for hiring those who did and monitoring their performance). My university had contracted to provide this course for a program in health care management that was designed for aboriginal Americans in the Canadian North. What I found was that the large majority of students in the course just didn’t seem to get mathematical ideas, and a great deal of extra help was necessary to get them through the course. They were not at all dumb (but likely, would have scored low on IQ tests) but the culture they came from didn’t emphasize any of the cognitive skills required to grasp mathematical ideas. So do you suggest that they were low IQ, hence their children needed to be genetically altered? 

Because that is what you are suggesting: that because there are measured differences on tests designed by and for educated Westerners, members of those groups who have lower average scores on these tests than do educated Westerners need to have their genes adjusted so that their children will do better on such tests.

I respect the position that not all peoples of the world would benefit so much from a higher average intelligence, as they got along for thousands of years without it, and it is not needed so much in a hunter-gatherer society, or at least the extra caloric expense of greater intelligence (bigger and faster brains) would outweigh the benefit. Almost all peoples at this point in time, though, are living in agro-industrial societies, even the desperately poor nations. Intelligence as quantified by IQ greatly predicts success within agro-industrial societies, and almost everyone would materially benefit from greater intelligence (as measured by Western tests or not). In so many other political contexts, we demand greater racial/group/class equality. I am convinced of the importance of such equality, and I am not convinced by any sudden shift to the position that such equality is not so important after all after we realize it means changing the genes.

 
Abel Dean
 
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Abel Dean
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30 December 2018 10:30
 
GAD - 30 December 2018 10:17 AM
Abel Dean - 30 December 2018 05:43 AM
GAD - 29 December 2018 10:37 PM

Why wouldn’t IQ be related to genetics, everything else is. The issue that makes this topic taboo is that there is no positive use for such data.

A popular zealous ideology with roots in World War 2 makes it a taboo topic, not the lack of utility. Very many people in the world want no more race and class inequality. If the causes are all about genetics and if we are real about it, then it will be the easiest thing we can change in the age of CRISPR. Otherwise, it will be the exclusive domain of the rich. I expect that genetic engineering of humans will remain criminalized all over the world, and rich couples will go to an IVF clinic on a cruise ship in international waters just to get genetically-engineered superbabies with maximal intelligence, health, beauty and ambition, increasing the race gaps and class gaps exponentially further.

As I said, no positive usefulness.

If more geniuses within society would not be positively useful, then what would be positively useful, in your opinion?

 
Jan_CAN
 
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Jan_CAN
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30 December 2018 10:34
 

All humans (homo sapiens) alive today are of the same species, by definition.  With minor differences between individuals and groups.  To overemphasize differences is a social, moral and scientific mistake.

There is a history of ‘white science’ looking to prove superiority which cannot be ignored; motives and preconceived notions/hypotheses producing biased results that are questionable to say the least.  Comparing groups that are not controlled for relevant influences and factors (e.g. health, education).  With studies trying to prove a hypothesis rather than test it; the latter being proper science.

And what can such studies hope to achieve?  The importance of science cannot be overstated, but science does not stand separate or above society.  It must start by asking valid questions. 

 
 
Skipshot
 
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Skipshot
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30 December 2018 10:35
 

burt refers to intelligence tests from a WEIRD (Western, Educated, Industrialized, Rich, Democratic) perspective, while the opposite is also true.  Put a WEIRD person in the Amazon jungle or Arctic Siberia without training and then judge his intelligence by how long and how well he survives.  Intelligence tests work only in relation to how the test is designed for the person being tested.

Declaring someone intellectually inferior because they do not pass your enthnocentric intelligence test, then extrapolating the data to the rest of the population is not good science or good manners.

 
Abel Dean
 
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Abel Dean
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30 December 2018 10:50
 
Jan_CAN - 30 December 2018 10:34 AM

All humans (homo sapiens) alive today are of the same species, by definition.  With minor differences between individuals and groups.  To overemphasize differences is a social, moral and scientific mistake.

There is a history of ‘white science’ looking to prove superiority which cannot be ignored; motives and preconceived notions/hypotheses producing biased results that are questionable to say the least.  Comparing groups that are not controlled for relevant influences and factors (e.g. health, education).  With studies trying to prove a hypothesis rather than test it; the latter being proper science.

And what can such studies hope to achieve?  The importance of science cannot be overstated, but science does not stand separate or above society.  It must start by asking valid questions.

Making accurate sense of existing human differences is key to improving the species. For example, why is it that smokers have a much higher rate of lung cancer than non-smokers? Oops, we just emphasized differences. A very large and influential camp within academia places heavy focus on the phenotypic differences, not genotypic differences, among the races. It is “critical race theory.” Looking at differences in general is not off the table for them, but genotypic differences is explicitly off the table. They hope to achieve equality. This is no spurious hope, and I claim that their hopes are much more likely to be achieved if they put genotypic differences back on the table. Are we to completely give up on such science as though it is forever hopelessly white supremacist, or what?

 
GAD
 
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GAD
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30 December 2018 10:52
 
Abel Dean - 30 December 2018 10:30 AM
GAD - 30 December 2018 10:17 AM
Abel Dean - 30 December 2018 05:43 AM
GAD - 29 December 2018 10:37 PM

Why wouldn’t IQ be related to genetics, everything else is. The issue that makes this topic taboo is that there is no positive use for such data.

A popular zealous ideology with roots in World War 2 makes it a taboo topic, not the lack of utility. Very many people in the world want no more race and class inequality. If the causes are all about genetics and if we are real about it, then it will be the easiest thing we can change in the age of CRISPR. Otherwise, it will be the exclusive domain of the rich. I expect that genetic engineering of humans will remain criminalized all over the world, and rich couples will go to an IVF clinic on a cruise ship in international waters just to get genetically-engineered superbabies with maximal intelligence, health, beauty and ambition, increasing the race gaps and class gaps exponentially further.

As I said, no positive usefulness.

If more geniuses within society would not be positively useful, then what would be positively useful, in your opinion?

More geniuses would tell you that defining a group or race as intellectually inferior to others has no positive usefulness. To claim that this would lead to genetically fixing their inferiorness, besides being a joke, would simply justify the superior to use it to become more superior under the guise that that they could then do more for the inferior, no so no. If you want to divide people as inferior/superior just do it, but drop the pretense bullshit that you are defining them as inferior so that can be targeted for superior enhancements.

 
 
Abel Dean
 
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Abel Dean
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30 December 2018 10:55
 
Skipshot - 30 December 2018 10:35 AM

burt refers to intelligence tests from a WEIRD (Western, Educated, Industrialized, Rich, Democratic) perspective, while the opposite is also true.  Put a WEIRD person in the Amazon jungle or Arctic Siberia without training and then judge his intelligence by how long and how well he survives.  Intelligence tests work only in relation to how the test is designed for the person being tested.

Declaring someone intellectually inferior because they do not pass your enthnocentric intelligence test, then extrapolating the data to the rest of the population is not good science or good manners.

For sure. I certainly would not claim that an IQ test predicts anyone’s odds of surviving alone in the jungle. Nor would I declare anyone “intellectually inferior” due to a test score. Nor would I extrapolate the low score to his or her whole group. You are tempted to ignore the science out of good manners, but I caution against that. Good manners are no excuse for either accepting delusions or allowing delusions to propagate.

 
Abel Dean
 
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Abel Dean
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30 December 2018 11:07
 
GAD - 30 December 2018 10:52 AM
Abel Dean - 30 December 2018 10:30 AM
GAD - 30 December 2018 10:17 AM
Abel Dean - 30 December 2018 05:43 AM
GAD - 29 December 2018 10:37 PM

Why wouldn’t IQ be related to genetics, everything else is. The issue that makes this topic taboo is that there is no positive use for such data.

A popular zealous ideology with roots in World War 2 makes it a taboo topic, not the lack of utility. Very many people in the world want no more race and class inequality. If the causes are all about genetics and if we are real about it, then it will be the easiest thing we can change in the age of CRISPR. Otherwise, it will be the exclusive domain of the rich. I expect that genetic engineering of humans will remain criminalized all over the world, and rich couples will go to an IVF clinic on a cruise ship in international waters just to get genetically-engineered superbabies with maximal intelligence, health, beauty and ambition, increasing the race gaps and class gaps exponentially further.

As I said, no positive usefulness.

If more geniuses within society would not be positively useful, then what would be positively useful, in your opinion?

More geniuses would tell you that defining a group or race as intellectually inferior to others has no positive usefulness. To claim that this would lead to genetically fixing their inferiorness, besides being a joke, would simply justify the superior to use it to become more superior under the guise that that they could then do more for the inferior, no so no. If you want to divide people as inferior/superior just do it, but drop the pretense bullshit that you are defining them as inferior so that can be targeted for superior enhancements.

You may realize, at this point, that many well-meaning activists are trying to improve educational quality among disadvantaged peoples all over the world. Theoretically, this would improve their mental abilities, and it would have the effect of improving their economies, their life conditions and their social conditions, to be closer to those of whites, if not equal or greater. Do you find something wrong with this? Perhaps you are tempted to call these activists as believing in the inferiority of such races? Would you claim that their activism has no positive usefulness? Or perhaps you think it is fundamentally selfish? I think we need to get out of the habit of presuming that a racial hereditarian point of view is somehow intrinsically evil. Suppose my motives are evil; even so, your motives need not be evil, but you can still accept the apparently accurate science, and I encourage it.

 
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30 December 2018 11:17
 
Abel Dean - 30 December 2018 10:55 AM
Skipshot - 30 December 2018 10:35 AM

burt refers to intelligence tests from a WEIRD (Western, Educated, Industrialized, Rich, Democratic) perspective, while the opposite is also true.  Put a WEIRD person in the Amazon jungle or Arctic Siberia without training and then judge his intelligence by how long and how well he survives.  Intelligence tests work only in relation to how the test is designed for the person being tested.

Declaring someone intellectually inferior because they do not pass your enthnocentric intelligence test, then extrapolating the data to the rest of the population is not good science or good manners.

For sure. I certainly would not claim that an IQ test predicts anyone’s odds of surviving alone in the jungle. Nor would I declare anyone “intellectually inferior” due to a test score. Nor would I extrapolate the low score to his or her whole group. You are tempted to ignore the science out of good manners, but I caution against that. Good manners are no excuse for either accepting delusions or allowing delusions to propagate.

In the interest of narrowing and clarifying your position, please re-state your goal in finding how intelligence is hereditary.  Please provide your definition of intelligence.

 
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30 December 2018 11:20
 
Abel Dean - 30 December 2018 10:28 AM

I respect the position that not all peoples of the world would benefit so much from a higher average intelligence, as they got along for thousands of years without it, and it is not needed so much in a hunter-gatherer society, or at least the extra caloric expense of greater intelligence (bigger and faster brains) would outweigh the benefit. Almost all peoples at this point in time, though, are living in agro-industrial societies, even the desperately poor nations. Intelligence as quantified by IQ greatly predicts success within agro-industrial societies, and almost everyone would materially benefit from greater intelligence (as measured by Western tests or not). In so many other political contexts, we demand greater racial/group/class equality. I am convinced of the importance of such equality, and I am not convinced by any sudden shift to the position that such equality is not so important after all after we realize it means changing the genes.

You are entirely missing my point, which is that the IQ correlations you mention relate to upbringing and education. The sort of things that Western designed IQ tests measure are those things that relate to what is emphasized in Western education. The hereditary component is there as well, but I strongly doubt that it is racially correlated, other than through cultural biasing (and it certainly does not go with “bigger and faster brains,” if that were the case, men would have higher average IQ than women, male brains are on average larger). There is a difference between cognitive capacities and abilities, and what is measured on an IQ test. The latter measures certain culturally directed developments of certain capacities, the former are far more general and adaptable to necessity. A Bushman hunter, for example, is able to recognize multiple environmental cues and correlate these together, combining them with past experience, and make future projections of what might be important on a hunt. Things that a Western educated person would totally miss as they stumbled about in the bush. Yet this same Bushman would come out with an IQ or 70 or 80, perhaps less, on a Western designed IQ test. So which is to be doubted as a measure of cognitive capacity—the intellectual skills necessary to hunt effectively, or the results of the IQ test?

My point is that using Western designed IQ tests on non-Western populations (or even on non-middle class Western populations) will not produce accurate measures of cognitive capacities any more than phrenology and measuring skull sizes did in the nineteenth century.

As an aside, it will be a long time before we have enough actual understanding to do the sort of gene manipulation you envision. Leads me to wonder about your level of education and understanding of such things.

 
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30 December 2018 11:21
 
Skipshot - 30 December 2018 10:35 AM

burt refers to intelligence tests from a WEIRD (Western, Educated, Industrialized, Rich, Democratic) perspective, while the opposite is also true.  Put a WEIRD person in the Amazon jungle or Arctic Siberia without training and then judge his intelligence by how long and how well he survives.  Intelligence tests work only in relation to how the test is designed for the person being tested.

Declaring someone intellectually inferior because they do not pass your enthnocentric intelligence test, then extrapolating the data to the rest of the population is not good science or good manners.

Thanks Skip. I actually wrote an essay saying that for 12th grade English.

 
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