Thursday, August 10, 2006

Human biodiversity2

NYT's Nick Wade excerpt on race (November 16, 2006)

Re-reading NYT's science reporter Nicholas Wade's Before the Dawn, the following excerpt (p194) struck me as both profound and obvious:
But the existence of considerable variation between races should not be any surprise either, given that the human family has long been split into separate branches, each of which has evolved independently for up to 50,000 years or more, buffeted in different directions by the random forces of genetic drift and the selective pressures of different climates, diseases, and societies.
Humans, of course, are not exempt from evolutionary forces. Drift, mutation, and selection continue to apply to us. Ignoring this has disastrous consequences, from hampering efforts to get medicines to people who stand to benefit from them (BiDil, for example) to immigration policies, from affirmative action quotas to interventionist wars like Iraq. We reject human biodiversity at our own peril.

Hispanic IQ estimates by state (November 6, 2006)

Same methodology used for previous estimates to estimate average Hispanic IQ by state:

1. Missouri -- 100.0
2. Wyoming -- 95.9
3. Virginia -- 95.7
4. Alaska -- 95.1
5. Ohio -- 94.8
6. Nebraska -- 94.8
7. Delaware -- 94.6
8. Arkansas -- 94.4
9. Pennsylvania -- 94.2
10. Kansas -- 94.0
11. Texas -- 94.0
12. Wisconsin -- 93.7
12. Massachusetts -- 93.7
14. New Jersey -- 93.6
15. Iowa -- 93.6
16. South Carolina -- 93.6
17. North Carolina -- 93.6
17. Michigan -- 93.6
19. Minnesota -- 93.5
20. Colorado -- 93.4
21. Florida -- 93.4
22. Maryland -- 93.3
23. New York -- 93.2
24. Illinois -- 93.2
25. Indiana -- 93.0
25. Idaho -- 93.0
27. Oklahoma -- 92.8
28. Hawaii -- 92.6
29. Washington -- 92.5
30. Oregon -- 92.2
31. Utah -- 92.2
32. New Mexico -- 92.0
33. Geogria -- 92.0
34. Arizona -- 91.4
35. DC -- 91.3
36. Nevada -- 90.8
37. Conneticut -- 90.8
38. California -- 90.7
39. Rhode Island -- 88.4

Yes, according to the NAEP's published results, that Missouri score is correct. It may be a statistical fluke or the result of a relatively high number of less endowed Hispanics being exempt from testing for whatever reason--made plausible as explanations by the fact that less than 3% of the state's student body is Hispanic.

I colored the states to correspond with the 2004 Presidential election to illustrate a curiosity--red state Hispanics do noticeably better than Hispanics from blue states. Indeed, Hispanic scores in Bush states are a little more than 1.1 IQ points higher than Hispanic scores in Kerry states. For whites, blacks, and Asians, the average Kerry state score bests the average Bush state score by 1.1, .4, and .2 IQ points, respectively.

It may also be that the Show Me state's diminutive Hispanic population is relatively talented. The size of a state's test-taking Hispanic population inversely correlates, at a statistically significant .41, pretty well with its estimated average IQ. A good thing for our Hispanics is for them to be removed from lots of other Hispanics. This further evinces the Latin world's low intellectual curiosity even relative to its IQ, and reinforces the need for at least a hiatus in immigration to assimilate those already here, as well as suggesting that the children of Hispanic parents in the US stand to suffer from continued underclass immigration from Latin America.

I suspect to some extent the least skilled Hispanics are more likely to flock to high cost-of-living centers where there are plenty of menial servant jobs to be performed and lots of other Hispanics to work, live, and collect benefits with, while more industrious Hispanics go it alone (or have lived for some time) in the belly of the white middle class beast.

Too bad Hispanics aren't broken up into sub-categories. The Hispanic state spread is nearly 12 points (almost a full standard deviation) compared to just over a six point spread between the highest and lowest scoring states for blacks and whites (excluding the DC 'anomaly' for whites). So the average Hispanic from Missouri is at the 55th percentile nationally, while the average Rhode Island Hispanic is at only the 18th percentile (a 37 point spread). Comparatively, the white spread ranges from the 64th percentile in Massachusetts to the 47th percentile in West Virginia (17 point spread), and the black spread ranges from the 41st percentile in Washington to the 25th percentile in Alabama (16 percentile spread) (see and improve upon my speculating as to why black scores are higher relative to white scores than has historically been the case).

White IQ estimates by state (November 3, 2006)

Using the same methodology and NAEP data previously described, estimates for non-Hispanic whites by state follow (with non-public school adjustment first, and then without at the end of the post):

1. DC -- 107.4
2. Massachusetts -- 103.4
3. Minnesota -- 102.9
4. New Jersey -- 102.7
5. Colorado -- 102.6
6. Virginia -- 102.5
7. New York -- 102.3
8. Wisconsin -- 102.3
9. North Dakota -- 102.3
10. South Dakota -- 102.2
11. Conneticut -- 102.1
12. Montana -- 102.1
13. Kansas -- 102.1
14. Nebraska -- 102.1
15. Alaska -- 101.9
16. Delaware -- 101.9
17. Texas -- 101.9
18. Pennsylvania -- 101.7
19. South Carolina -- 101.6
20. Maryland -- 101.5
21. Ohio -- 101.5
22. Iowa -- 101.5
23. Illinois -- 101.4
24. Michigan -- 101.3
25. Vermont -- 101.3
26. New Hampshire -- 101.3
27. Washington -- 101.0
28. Missouri -- 100.8
29. Idaho -- 100.8
30. Wyoming -- 100.8
31. Oregon -- 100.7
32. North Carolina -- 100.6
33. Georgia -- 100.6
34. Arizona -- 100.5
35. Florida -- 100.1
36. Utah -- 100.1
37. Indiana -- 100.1
38. Maine -- 99.9
39. New Mexico -- 99.7
40. Rhode Island -- 99.7
41. California -- 99.7
42. Arkansas -- 99.5
43. Louisiana -- 99.3
44. Oklahoma -- 99.3
45. Kentucky -- 98.9
46. Tennessee -- 98.8
47. Mississippi -- 98.5
48. Alabama -- 98.5
49. Nevada -- 98.5
50. Hawaii -- 98.5
51. West Virginia -- 97.1

When discussing Tickle's state IQ averages, Steve wrote:

[DC's] small white ultra-yuppie population in the Northwest of DC is, I would guess, in a class by itself in average IQ compared to any full state.
I've been unable to find the percentage of DC's white population that attends non-public schooling, so the estimate above errantly assumes all of the District's white urchins go to public schools. In reality DC's white IQ might be as high as 108.

Unsuprising, for the most part. Very generally, white's do more stellar in the northeast and performance slides modestly as you head south and west. Chilly weather 'helps' as well. Why do Rhode Island, and more curiously Maine, perform poorly relative to states in close proximity? Texas and South Carolina, interestingly, both do well for southern states, and Colorado kicks butt for being so far west. Why do whites in Hawaii do almost as poorly as whites in the impoverished Appalachian state of West Virginia?

The blue/higher IQ relationship is more meaningful when only whites are considered, which is what many stuffy white leftists are actually trying to get at when they fallaciously clamor about things like the infamous IQ hoax. Of course when Hispanics and blacks are considered, it's certain that Republican voters have, on average, higher IQs than Democratic voters. But when whites are exclusively considered, that may not be the case, although presumably the affluent in both blue and red states tend toward voting Republican in greater proportions than denizens of the state do on the whole.

Without the non-public school adjustment:

1. DC -- 107.4
2. Massachusetts -- 103.3
3. Minnesota -- 102.8
4. New Jersey -- 102.5
5. Colorado -- 102.4
6. Virginia -- 102.3
7. North Dakota -- 102.2
8. New York -- 102.2
9. Wisconsin -- 102.1
9. South Dakota -- 102.1
11. Montana -- 102.1
12. Kansas -- 102.0
12. Nebraska -- 102.0
14. Conneticut -- 102.0
15. Alaska -- 101.8
16. Texas -- 101.6
17. Delaware -- 101.6
18. Pennsylvania -- 101.6
19. Ohio -- 101.4
20. Iowa -- 101.4
21. South Carolina -- 101.3
22. Maryland -- 101.3
23. Vermont -- 101.3
24. New Hampshire -- 101.3
25. Illinois -- 101.2
26. Michigan -- 101.2
27. Washington -- 101.0
28. Missouri -- 100.7
28. Idaho -- 100.7
28. Wyoming -- 100.7
31. Oregon -- 100.7
32. North Carolina -- 100.4
33. Georgia -- 100.4
34. Arizona -- 100.2
35. Utah -- 100.1
36. Indiana -- 100.0
37. Maine -- 99.9
38. Florida -- 99.8
39. Rhode Island -- 99.5
40. New Mexico -- 99.5
41. California -- 99.4
42. Arkansas -- 99.3
43. Oklahoma -- 99.0
44. Louisiana -- 99.0
45. Kentucky -- 98.9
46. Tennessee -- 98.7
47. Hawaii -- 98.4
48. Nevada -- 98.3
49. Alabama -- 98.3
50. Mississippi -- 98.2
51. West Virginia -- 97.0

Military men, women really not dunces (November 3, 2006)

I cringe whenever someone is raked over the coals for saying something provocative. It's nearly impossible to offend me, but tight lips owing to concerns over the reaction of the thought/expression police comes closest. So the predictable reaction to John Kerry's latest gaffe has been disappointing. I wish his words would be used as a starting point for widespread discussion of the intelligence of our military personnel. But as Steve Sailer points out, that'd inevitably lead us down the road to the DoD categorical system based on batteries that are basically IQ tests (which is exactly why we need the discussion).

Instead, Republican partisans will blather on about how this illustrates the Dems' innate disdain for the military, erstwhile Democratic cheerleaders expediently called for an apology and can now smugly and quietly have reinforced the view that the military is comprised of dunces due to the lack of solid argument refuting the assumption.

But the data does not support the stereotypical ignorant, destitute military person. If the DoDEA schools were aggregated and counted as an individual state, they'd have the eighth highest estimated average IQ (100.6) in the country, just behind Minnesota and ahead of Wisconsin.

More impressive still is that the DoDEA manages to get said results from a demographic pool that is only 58.1% white, 22% black, and 9.9% Hispanic, and 9.0% Asian. If estimates are broken up by race and by state, the DoDEA schools fare astoundingly well. For Hispanics, as its own state the DoDEA would rank first, with an estimated IQ of 100.2. Ditto for blacks, at 95.8. For whites, it'd come in third, at 102.8. For Asians, it'd be a middling 11th of 23, at 101.3 (hardly a score to be ashamed of).

Far from being the last resort for desperate minorities, the US military is a bastion of our intellectually above-average compatriots of all races. Let's stop sacrificing them for the putative benefit of Iraqis who are glad to see them die.

Also see Steve's post on estimated military IQ from the late nineties. Those in uniform look even better. Keep in mind the children of military personnel will experience some regression to the mean and that DoDEA schools are for servicemen mostly stationed outside the US whereas enlistment scores are taken from all military personnel (the finance branch and other professional tasks done disproportionately in-country?).

More musings on state IQ (November 2, 2006)

Adjusting for the percentage of white children attending non-public schooling altered my IQ estimates modestly (they follow at the end of this post--the original estimates are here). The adjustment bumped up the correlation between McDaniel's estimates and my own from .962 to .964 and edged up the correlation between my estimates and that of the Vietnam Veterans from .52 to .53, as well as a miniscule increase in the relationship to Tickle's scores and the results from Project Talent (less than one one-hundreth in both cases).

But John S Bolton commented on something that had also given me pause--McDaniel gleaned his estimates from NAEP data on fourth graders from 1992 to 2005, and on eighth graders from 1990 to 2005. This might be inflating the scores of states that have experienced the greatest amount of demographic shifting over the last decade and a half. Presumably the Vietnam Vet and Project Talent scores would be similarly affected. Specifically, states that have seen the greatest influx of underachieving Hispanic immigrants should perform more poorly in my estimates made solely on 2005 data.

It's hard to discern much. Florida, New Mexico, and Texas fare better by McDaniel, but California, Arizona, Illinois, and Colorado do worse.

John also brought up the question of putative white racism. The relationship between one racial group's performance by state and the proportion of various racial groups in the state doesn't appear to be very robust across the board. But blacks in a state perform more poorly as the percentage of the state's population that is black increases (a state's black average score and the percentage of its population that is black are inversely correlated at a moderate .29). Is it irrational racism that is hindering blacks or is it that black underclass pathologies undercut already disadvantaged blacks even further?

Also of interest, black and white scores within a state trend in the same direction. The correlation between the average white and black score in a state is a firm .50 (excluding the aberration of DC, where stuffy whites do tremendously well). Better teaching methods increasing scholastic performance to the extent that's possible? The result of affluent, more gifted English lineage and blacks with a greater percentage of European ancestry concentrated in the Northeast?

1. Massachusetts -- 101.7
2. North Dakota -- 101.5
3. Vermont -- 101.5
4. South Dakota -- 101.3
5. Montana -- 101.3
6. New Hampshire -- 101.2
7. Minnesota -- 100.9
8. Wisconsin -- 100.6
9. Wyoming -- 100.5
10. Iowa -- 100.2
11. Maine -- 99.9
12. Idaho -- 99.9
13. Washington -- 99.9
14. Nebraska -- 99.8
15. Virginia -- 99.7
16. Kansas -- 99.7
17. Ohio -- 99.6
18. Colorado -- 99.4
19. New Jersey -- 99.4
20. Oregon -- 99.3
21. Delaware -- 99.1
22. Michigan -- 99.1
23. Utah -- 99.0
24. Conneticut -- 98.9
25. Pennsylvania -- 98.9
26. Missouri -- 98.7
27. Indiana -- 98.7
28. Alaska -- 98.7
29. Kentucky -- 98.3
30. New York -- 98.0
31. Illinois -- 97.9
32. South Carolina -- 97.7
33. North Carolina -- 97.6
34. Maryland -- 97.3
35. Texas -- 97.2
36. Rhode Island -- 97.0
37. Oklahoma -- 97.0
38. West Virginia -- 96.8
39. Tennessee -- 97.7
40. Arkansas -- 96.7
41. Georgia -- 96.5
42. Florida -- 96.2
43. Arizona -- 96.1
44. Nevada -- 95.1
45. Louisiana -- 94.9
46. California -- 94.8
47. New Mexico -- 94.6
48. Alabama -- 94.5
49. Hawaii -- 94.4
50. Mississippi -- 93.3
51. DC -- 87.9

State IQ estimates from McDaniel of Virginia Commonwealth University

What makes being audacious enjoyable can also make it turbulent. Saying or posting something novel runs the risk of overlooking something critical that renders all you've said meaningless and leaves you looking like an idiot (see three-fourths the way down in the comments section). So when a big-league player comes out and mirrors almost exactly what you've come up with, it's quite a relief.

Professor Michael McDaniel of VCU recently had a paper published in Intelligence estimating average IQ by state based on NAEP testing results (easily accessible viewing of the estimates via Dienekes). You may recall that I attempted the same back in July. Well, we were after the same thing. Our results correlate almost perfectly at over .96. Doubtful a distinguished professor gets a confidence boost from the supportive results of some livingroom puke, but the puke sure does!

We did differ in some ways, however. McDaniel set the mean IQ at 100 with a standard deviation of 15 and averaged the mean results from NAEP reading and math scores by state for both the fourth and eighth grades. He also adjusted for the percentage of white children in each state attending non-public schools.

I took the regression equations produced by running the numbers in the data table put together by Richard Lynn in Race Differences in Intelligence where he correlates IQ scores with international math and science test scores (pp 173-175) and then adjusted the nominal test score values (by running an IQ of 98 through the regression equation produced by Lynn's numbers) on the international tests to the NAEP math and science tests in the US, applying an equal weight to eighth grade math and science NAEP scores.

I opted for science scores over reading scores for a few reasons: Lynn used math and science, scholastic science questions are more g-loaded than reading ones are (reading skills are more problematic at younger ages), and reading comprehension questions are more biased against newly-arrived immigrants than either science or math questions are. A minor drawback is that Kansas and Pennsylvania lack NAEP science results so I had to estimate using only the math results for these two states.

Whether math, science, or reading results are used is of mostly academic importance: math and science results correlate at .90, math and reading at .91, and (somewhat surprisingly) science and reading at .95 (all for eighth graders).

McDaniel probably improves on my estimates by taking non-public school attendance into account. He argues that private- and homeschooled children tend to be cognitively above average. Generally that makes sense, although about 7% of private schools in the US are devoted to special education, and with over three-fourths are religiously affiliated, questions of values and morality rather than just academic attributes have to be considered. The NCES estimates that privately-schooled eighth graders score the equivalent of 12.3 points better on NAEP math tests (not in terms of IQ--the max is 500). I'll adjust for the proportion of private school attendees accordingly in the near future to see if it might improve the estimates.

In his VDare column on McDaniel's work, Steve Sailer compares the professor's estimates with those of previous good-faith attempts at ascertaining average state IQs. I correlated mine with the same attempts. With McDaniel's in green and mine in blue, estimates correlate with the 1960 Project Talent at .60 and .60, a mid-eighties study of Vietnam Vets' IQ at .63 and .61, with a combined ACT/SAT estimate at .71 and .71, and with Tickle's averages at .53 and .52. Quite similar, although McDaniel's are a bit more vigorous. I suspect that is due to the non-public schooling adjustment.

McDaniel's work is long overdue, as it dispels the spurious estimates of state IQ that have bubbled up in the past. And his academic courage is admirable. For example, in the discussion following his results, he writes:

IQ at the individual level has strong correlates with race. There are large and intractable mean racial differences in IQ at the person level... Because racial composition of the state is a large magnitude correlate of state IQ, one cannot expect meaningful changes in estimated state IQ as long as the state racial composition is relatively stable.
Plenty of sharp Americans, as well as myself, have long advocated the institution of a merit immigration system to allow the US to glean the global cream of the crop (to increase the national IQ and standard of living, shrink the wealth gap, etc) rather than absorbing millions of destitute third-world liabilities as our current immigration policy does. McDaniel logically takes this same argument to the state level:

States might structure incentives to encourage those with high IQs to remain in the state. Likewise, a state may encourage high IQ individuals to have children. Over time, these policies should raise the average IQ of state residents.
Without apology, he suggests different eugenic techniques, entertaining the 2,500 year old Platonic idea of state-permitted birthing. No less unapologetically, he points out that states might consider becoming "Jewish-friendly" to pull in buckets of Ashkenazi.

Business schools harp relentlessly on the idea of human capital, and yet the full scope of what this means is so rarely bantered about. Instead, education and training proxy loosely for IQ, but at great deadweight loss (a concept B-schools are also familiar with). I wish I could take a few classes with McDaniel--undoubtedly the lectures and conversations would be more fruitful than the typical blather that ignores human biodiversity.

More on black IQ estimates (October 22, 2006)

That the black/white IQ gap may be narrowing is good news so long as it continues to be the result of increased black IQ. At the same time it illustrates the disastrous toll the sixties cultural revolution has taken on the African American community. In spite of better nutrition, access to better education and healthcare, possible cognitive gains, and the near eradication of irrational racism (directed at blacks), the black illegitimacy rate hovers around 70%, up from 9% in 1950, blacks are incarcerated at a rate over eight times that of whites (pre-sixties they were imprisoned at four times the white rate), and white households now have on average over fourteen times the wealth of black households.

Irrational racism hasn't been eradicated completely, of course. Besides the Orwellian logic of discriminating to end discrimination, providing equal opportunity by explicitly creating unequal opportunity, etc, of affirmative action, irrational racism is constantly reinforced by black leaders and black entertainment. One only needs to listen to the local hip-hop station to get a flavor. The local station in my city uses the acronym "LSB" (light-skinned brother) to refer to whites that are approved of, while news segments focus almost exclusively on blacks in the local community (the black community places a much greater emphasis on current events relative to national or international ones than do mainstream sources of news, due in part to the tight geographical proximity that exists in the inner city). A 'legacy of slavery' pervades, putatively implicating all whites for an intractable disdain for blacks, a supposition that is in itself deeply and irrationally racist. This defeatism, constantly reinforced, makes it all the more difficult for an already disadvantaged group to progress socially and economically. So in spite of so many material improvements, in many ways the black community is in worse shape than it was in the early sixties.

Nonetheless, I'm encouraged by the potential black improvement.

Also, more to repudiate the myth that the US military is the hesistant refuge of the hopeless, especially among blacks. While the military is often derided as an institution that disproportionately risks the lives of young black men (even though blacks suffer casualties at rates lower than their numbers would suggest) with no where else to turn, black children in the Department of Defense Education Activity (the school system for servicepeople overseas) score higher than the black population of any of the fifty states plus DC (enjoying an estimated IQ of 95.8), placing them at the 44th percentile nationally (compared to the historical average at the 16th percentile for African Americans) just an arm's length behind New York's remaining white population.

Black IQ estimates by state (October 21, 2006)

Employing the same methodology used to estimate state average IQs, I've been breaking the results down by race. Black estimates by state follow (those not listed had too small an NAEP test-taking contingent to use with any statistical certainty):

1) Washington -- 94.5
2) Delaware -- 93.9
3) Massachusetts -- 93.6
3) Virginia -- 93.6
5) Alaska -- 93.5
6) New Jersey -- 92.9
7) Colorado -- 92.9
8) South Carolina -- 92.5
9) New Mexico -- 92.3
10) Kentucky -- 92.2
11) Texas -- 92.2
12) New York -- 92.1
13) Oregon -- 92.0
14) Arizona -- 91.9
15) North Carolina -- 91.5
16) West Virginia -- 91.5
17) Georgia -- 91.3
18) Iowa -- 91.3
18) Kansas -- 91.3
20) Maryland -- 91.2
21) Ohio -- 91.1
22) Michigan -- 91.1
23) Conneticut -- 90.6
24) Indiana -- 90.4
25) Pennsylvania -- 90.4
26) Missouri -- 90.4
27) Rhode Island -- 90.2
28) Louisiana -- 90.1
29) Minnesota -- 90.0
30) Illinois -- 89.8
30) Oklahoma -- 89.8
32) California -- 89.7
33) Florida -- 89.6
34) Wisconsin -- 89.5
35) Tennessee -- 89.3
36) Nebraska -- 89.0
37) Nevada -- 88.7
38) DC -- 88.6
39) Mississippi -- 88.5
40) Arkansas -- 88.0
41) Alabama -- 87.8

The relatively high scores jump out immediately to those who are familiar with the historical results of IQ testing by race. Adjusted for population, the average IQ estimate for black Americans comes to just under 91. Traditionally, African Americans have consistently scored around 85, and the gap between whites and blacks has held tenaciously at one standard deviation. So these estimates appear rather high. A few possibilities as to why:

- The black/white IQ gap may be narrowing. Flynn and Dickens argue that blacks have gained five or six points on whites over the last three decades, presumably spurred in part by better access to nutrition and healthcare. If accurate, that would put contemporary average African American IQ at 90 or 91, just as my estimates did.

- The rate of interracial marriage and procreation has increased over time. Lynn marshalls lots of evidence showing that racial 'hybrids' tend toward IQs that are an average of the two groups their parents represent. The offspring of one black and one white parent represent almost 3% of American births today, compared to about 2.3% in 1995 and around 1.3% in 1980. This should work to attenuate the gap by slightly lowering average white IQ and raising average black IQ a bit (the latter should rise more than the former falls due to sheer size). But taking a net 1.7% 'blending' and assuming a 15 point gap would only be expected to narrow the gap by a quarter of one point.

Relatedly, states with lighter skinned blacks (those with more white ancestry in the northern states especially) tend to achieve higher test score results, although the results aren't that pronounced. Deep-south South Carolina certainly bucks the trend, probably due to the number of black military families at Fort Jackson, where most army personnel are initially trained.

- I built the formula for the estimates using Lynn's data on international academic and IQ test results, so my equation is linear. Although Lynn believes that adjusting for attenuation yields a correlation between test scores and IQ of 1 (a perfect relationship), I'm inclined to assume that the correlations for IQ and math (.87) and IQ and science (.81), even adjusted for attenuation, are still not perfect. And because my formula is linear, moving further out from the averages if anything underestimates the magnitude of the true deviation. So depending on the true strength of the relationship, the estimates might be inflated by a couple of points (although I think this would only be on the order of a point or two).

- Differing rates of truancy by race may be artificially giving blacks a boost relative to whites. Assuming that children frequently absent from school generally come from more chaotic, less endowed households, it follows that students who are the least likely to show up on test day are among the poorest performers. And the absentee rate for black children (24%), defined as missing an average of three or more days per month, is greater than the rate for white striplings (19%).

- According to Rushton, black adolescents develop faster than white adolescents (who in turn develop faster than Asians). Consequently, young blacks achieve greater parity with their white counterparts than they do as both groups age. Indeed, very early on black children may be more intelligent than whites and Asians due to relatively accelerated physical development. This meshes with the Steve Sailer's tentative assertion and the GNXP graph supporting it that the gap may have narrowed among children but doesn't appear to be shrinking among adults. To the extent that differing development levels affect average scores by race, IQ tests based on an average white IQ of 100 given to children will tend to underestimate the eventual cognitive capacity of Asians and overestimate it for blacks.

Quick reflection on Stossel's stereotyping (September 15, 2006)

Stossel didn't disappoint. Sure, watching Race and Sex: What you think but don't say was akin to the introductory first day of class in Steve Sailer 101, and even the most casual Sailer reader probably didn't learn anything new, Stossel is a media insider who has the ability to override the omerta on honest discussion on the various topics of human biodiversity that permeates so many aspects of every person's daily existence. While he threw in a bone for leftists to knaw on at the end by solely focusing on the evil of white hate groups (and completely ignoring black hate crimes that occur at 225% the rate of white hate crimes), his special will still deservingly get him branded an iconoclast by the high priests of the ZGD myth.

He briefly covered a host of interesting topics (although his methodology was by no means perfect and the sample sizes probably always too small to be considered reliable):

- American children appeared to find a Muslim man wearing a headscarf more menacing than an East Asian guy (but while he suggested this was a racial stereotype, it was more likely due to the headscarf (both shots were from the neck up)--people find items that hide the person of an individual to be suspicious. From an evolutionary and social standpoint this makes sense--a threat might be lurking behind obfuscatory item. For example, we shake hands to show we're unarmed, and people in supervisory roles often pace with their hands linked behind their lower backs to project a higher status than those they are supervising).

- Across the generational spectrum, people had more negative impressions of the senescent (even old fogies held this view) than of the young. Well, most people don't like to die. It's scary, and it means you can't reproduce anymore. Plus old people are less likely to provide you with useful services (although they might leave you a nice chunk of change--all the more reason to drive them to an early grave by despising them!)

- People of all races were more likely to shoot blacks in simulation games than people of other races. Blacks also followed this pattern. Well, blacks commit murder at seven times the rate of non-blacks and they have more athletic prowess (they'll be able to shoot you quickly, so better get them first). So it's foolish (even if you're black), not to be initially more weary of unknown blacks than unknown members of other groups.

- The supposed tests regarding the power of stereotypes that accidently proves how fickle stereotypes (or self-images, more accurately) are at the individual level did not deviate from what I'd predicted. The supposed stereotypes that reticently permeated all things in a way seemingly intractable in evil white society were quickly dispelled by things as innocuous as thirty second tv commercials. Tell a woman she's dirt before she performs, and she won't perform as well as if you tell her she's Athena. It doesn't matter what you told her yesterday. So Stossel (his admittedly unscientific study used a whopping four women--sample size problems indeed!) and the studies he referenced strongly suggest that people are anchored at some innate level on a host of attributes from athletic ability to aptitude, and that the level of personal self-confidence and motivation can alter performance a bit in either direction for as long as it is effectively kept up. Again, stuff we've known for a long time.

- He brought in John Entine, author of the book Taboo, to discuss West African dominance in sprinting, and Kenyan dominance in distance running.

- He dismissed the charge that slavery played some part in African American physical dominance by pointing out that slave breeding was never a real phenomenon. But mortality rates on the Transatlantic voyage, apparently running around 10%, probably moderately selected for stronger blacks.

- The biggest disappointment was that only negative stereotypes were commented on in detail. And when it was reported that blacks presented with favorable messages prior to taking tests scored higher than those who received negative messages, it didn't compare these higher scores with those of other races (as they surely do not come close to closing the racial gap).

Stossel on stereotyping (September 15, 2006)

John Stossel will be hosting a 20/20 special putatively about stereotypes (although the content strikes me as more accurately being about self-image rather than the perceptions one has of others) this evening. I happened to catch the GMA's promotional interview with him this morning, and immediately became credulous about his claim that 30%+ swings in test scores were attributable to the test-taker's self image. He made this claim based on the results of two groups of girls, one which saw a commercial featuring a ditsy Malibu Stacy before taking the test.

There's a plethora of potential failings in the methodology used to reach the conclusions, which I hope will be fully explained in the one hour segment airing at 10pm Eastern time tonight.

For one, it appeared that there were around ten or so testers per group. So sample size could be an enormous issue. Also, what did the control group do prior to the test? Witnessing dopey vacuity before doing something mentally rigorous is probably detrimental irrespective of the content. Did/would girls perform better if they saw feminist propaganda before taking a test?

Assuming this is all answered satisfactorily, I suspect 'propaganda' does have a palatable effect on performance, cognitive, physical, or otherwise. If it doesn't, high school coaches across the land are wasting their breathe on inspirational pre-game pep talks. I used to watch segments of One on One before basketball games, and the opening battle scene of Gladiator before Warcraft II tournaments. It certainly seemed to help.

The adherents of the ZGD (zero group differences) orthodoxy will undoubtedly use Stossel's report to bolster the view that blacks score a standard deviation lower on IQ tests than whites due to a low self-image propagated by a bigoted white-dominated society. (Of course they won't ask why the gap has remained so tenaciously even as white America's view of blacks has clearly improved over the last eighty years, or why white society apparently paints Asians in a better light than it paints itself, or why racial supremacists don't perform astronomically on aptitude tests, or why an American educational system that makes ubiquitous the idea that all students have the potential to be astronauts, scientists, or Congressmen, has been unable to keep pace with the rest of the developed world, particularly in Asia where students are put on various academic paths very early on based on their abilities).

But the question of duration is critical. Stossel's girls apparently saw the commercial right before taking the test. If they saw it a week prior, would it have any effect? Maybe I'd be able to recall Crowe's powerful words ("What we do in life men, echoes in eternity") from memory, but any effect would likely be greatly attenuated. And if I saw a CareBear episode right before the tournament, Gladiator from last week would be pushed out of my mind for sure.

Is the phenomenon one of 'institutionalized' stereotyping, or merely a question of personal motivation? If the former, then Stossel's results don't make sense. If a thirty second commercial can drop a person's performance by more than 30%, then the ubiquity of subtle societal stereotyping is easily remedied by a quick inspirational blurb. Educators across the country, NCLB requirements just became a lot easier to meet, and without any number fudging. Just tell the kids they're great (or mediocre this year, good next year, great the year after that, etc).

Yet I suspect that the program will be presented as if to show how damaging an 'instituitionalized', all-permeating stereotypical society is to all but heterosexual male WASPs who are supposed to enjoy a society that works for their benefit and presents them as infallible (of course contemporary American media does anything but that). If this were the case, it would be nearly impossible to prove (and in this way is quite religious in nature, whereas propaganda verfiably mutating performance back and forth makes cross-group comparisons easy). If it can be escaped from with a silly video clip lasting a few moments, then it really isn't much of a problem.

Some other tidbits Stossel lays out:

We'll show you tests that demonstrate the power of believing in stereotypes — how they can become self-fulfilling prophecies. For instance, women who watch commercials showing dumb women go on to do worse on intelligence tests. Blacks who are told a golf game is a test of athleticism score higher than blacks who are told the test is an intelligence test. Asian women score higher on IQ tests when reminded that they're Asian and lower when reminded they're women.
Again, if these results are valid (and to the extent they are, they are likely to have a greater effect on people who have little invested in the activities/tests they are performing--I doubt telling Tiger Woods that hybrids are better or worse than 'purebreds' at golf will have much effect on his performance), we've been wrong about stereotyping for a long time. Conventional wisdom said it was hard to undue. Self-proclaimed realists claimed it was largely based on statistical tendencies, and though not specifically true, still generally correct. But it would turn out to be incredibly fickle, as mutable as a cheesy tv spot.

Too bad Nixon's dead--he'd have been able to resurrect his image as a foreign policy expert by suggesting the US buy television and radio spots in hostile countries that subtely denegrated the ethnic majority there.

More seriously, group differences are very real and mostly intractable. Mood swings and motivational shifts can alter a person's performance to a degree, but sustainability and permanence are as elusive as they've ever been.

I'm looking forward to Stossel's special because for a mainstream journalists he's as close to a truth detective as one can find. If anyone will touch a taboo and spark a national conversation about it, it's him. And the preamble sounds promising:

And are some stereotypes true? Are blacks better athletes because they are physically different? Are gay men more effeminate [can even the most blithely quixotic leftist really dispute that?] and more likely to become dancers? We search for answers in "Race and Sex: What You Think, but Can't Say" this Friday, Sept. 15, at 10 p.m. ET.
Interesting, this comes on the heels of the release of Rushton's findings that males average a little over three points higher than females on IQ tests:

A study published in the September 2006 issue of the journal "Intelligence" analyzed 145 items from the Scholastic Assessment Test (SAT) in 100,000 17- to 18-year-olds and found a male IQ advantage of 3.63 points. It also found that the g factor--the general factor of mental ability underlay both the SAT Verbal (SAT-V) and the SAT Mathematics (SAT-M) scales with the congruence between these components greater than 0.90, and that it was the g factor that predicted student grades better than the traditionally used SAT-V and SAT-M scales.
Makes sense. For most of human history, mating was not a mutually decided upon act. Dominant men chose the women they wanted to mate with. Smart men had to figure out how to form alliances with other men, navigate traps set by rivals, and manipulate political and social arrangements to gain positions of dominance to procreate with the best women. This pressure wouldn't have existed as strongly in females. The healthy, pretty ones would be the most likely to be chosen.

Diversity training programs a failure (September 8, 2006)

The research of three pedants is the Dead White Male Society's way of telling us that wishful thinking doesn't change reality:

A study shows U.S. diversity training programs have failed to eliminate bias and increase the number of minorities in management.

The study concluded that, even though corporations have spent increasing amounts of money on such programs since the 1990s, the programs have not been effective.
These professors conclude that the training programs have failed. But they're wrong. Maybe the programs have failed to realize the results the anti-white crowd had hoped for, but they certainly haven't failed the businesses using them.

The market worked without the diversity mandates, and continues to work in spite of them. The American business world is fiercely competitive and, despite this sort of drivel, quite meritocratic. The minorities that these programs, borne out of the absurd money being made in the nineties, target are less capable than the whites (and likely the invisible Asian minority--the story doesn't specify) filling these managerial positions. An HR stooge can spend eight hours preaching to you about how great all belief systems other than yours are, and how the purveyors of said systems make fabulous employees deserved of a promotion, but if your own empirical analysis and lying eyes reveal that they aren't managerial material, it won't make a lick of difference. Sensitivity training doesn't alter the underlying truths of human biodiversity.

How do our professors deal with the results? Reevaluate their underlying assumptions about why swarthy people are underrepresented and white and yellow people are overrepresented in high-earner positions? Nope:

"The only truly effective way to increase the presence of minorities and women in managerial positions is through programs that create organizational responsibility," [Professor Frank Dobin of Harvard] added. "If no one is specifically charged with the task of increasing diversity, then the buck inevitably gets passed ad infinitum."
First we suggested to them indirectly through the cultural revolution that equal representation was more important than merit. Then through mandatory indoctrination, er, diversity training, we suggested to them explicitly that equal representation was more important than merit. Now we've no choice but to specifically put agents in place who are compensated based on their ability to stock our various companies with a 'diverse' workforce irrespective of merit. It's the only right thing to do!

Notice how Dobin assumes that the "only truly effective way" to kick out white (and Asian, shh) men and bring in women and browns is hire quota enforcers to ensure that promotional decisions first consider gender and ethnicity before looking at other secondary qualifications like past performance, education, sociability, or intelligence. Either he assumes that women and browns are outgunned by white (and Asian, quiet!) men (women because of other innate desires in life like childrearing and to a lesser extent intelligence; browns chiefly because of lower intelligence) or he assumes that white (and Asian (!)) men are hopeless bigots (okay, he almost certainly assumes, at least ostensibly, the second explanation). In either case, his position relies upon a breaching of the Dogma of Zero Group Differences; the former being obvious, the latter in that he assumes that white and Asian men are inherently bigoted while browns are helpless victims of their hate, an explanation that identifies clear racial differences in disposition.

Notice also how it is assumed that diversity is inherently a good to be strived for. No discussion of the possibility that the market might be working without spurious mandates from academia, and that demographic diversity might not be good for most businesses. That isn't intellectual diversity, which is contingent upon high IQs, but 'demographic diversity', which is Orwellian left-speak for 'fewer whities'. Perhaps businesses are passing the buck because they have an obligation to their shareholders and their customers to maximize returns and utility, respectively--not to share in the US' degredation of human capital.

We get to look forward to more of this garbage. Our porous borders and idiotic lack of immigration enforcement and failure to enact a merit immigration system are bringing in millions of less capable browns that are going to represent a boom for diversity task forces but a bust for human progress.

Military men and women aren't dunces (September 5, 2006)

The leftist media likes to portray American soldiers as either unsophisticated brutes looking to smash some ethnic community, or the hopelessly downtrodden indented into the service due to an utter lack of viable alternatives. What they don't like to convey, and indeed what most self-desribed patriotic Americans don't realize, is that the military classifies potential recruits into five categories based on AQFT scores (basically intelligence tests). Up until last year, category V's (IQ of about 80 or below) weren't allowed in at all, and category IV's (IQs between 80-92) comprised no more than 2% of the new recruits each year (although that number has shot up drastically to accomodate shortages, especially in the army).

Not surprisingly, military brats aren't stupid. Employing the same methodology used to estimate average IQs by state, that is, taking the regression equations produced by running the numbers in the data table put together by Richard Lynn in Race Differences in Intelligence where he correlates IQ scores with international math and science test scores (pp 173-175) and then adjusting the nominal test score values (by running an IQ of 98 through the regression equation produced by Lynn's numbers) on the international tests to the NAEP math and science tests in the US, I come up with the following. From the process described above and by applying equal weight to the science and math test scores by state, the list of states can be found here.

How do the DoDEA schools rank in comparison? With an estimated IQ of 100.6, the DoD's offspring perform at a level suggesting that if considered as an independent state, the DoD ranks eighth in the country, ahead of Wisconsin and just behind Minnesota. Not too shabby, especially when 38% of military enlistees are minorities, and 21% of the total force is black. All the more reason to despair the 2,651 and counting lost in Iraq (in addition to the 20,000 or more wounded there).

These people are, on average, smarter than the run-of-the-mill American. They're also healthier and more energetic. They don't need to join up to put food on the table. Their sense of duty is something we may need in the future, yet we are squandering it today by putting our boys in an exceedingly difficult situation, fighting human nature (Iraq's underwhelming IQ of 87, widespread consanguinety, and Islamic hostility toward Westerners on the home turf) and human garbage, hanging even the death penalty over their heads for untward conduct while on duty.

Also, the estimated IQs of other US territories:

Virgin Islands -- 88.0
Guam -- 87.2
American Samoa -- 75.8 (perhaps due in part to over 90% of the population speaking Samoan; on the NAEP science test, the adolescent population scored the equivalent of a 68.8. On the math test, hinging less on language fluency, the estimated IQ comes to 82.7, about on par with how non-Maori Pacific Islanders usually fare on aptitude tests. It might also have something to do with having the highest emigration rate in the world, with the better equipped moving out.)

Before the Dawn (August 17, 2006)

Is a fascinating and informative book that brings together NYT science reporter Nick Wade's vast work on human history, focusing most intensely on the human story from 50,000 to 5,000 years ago. If it's not on your reading list, at least let me pass on a few of the most salient points (and my thoughts on and additions to them) that stick in my mind without need for reference:

- Neanderthals, who developed dinstinctly from their African cousins 127,000 years ago, likely did not interbreed with the homo sapiens as the latter pushed them into extinction over a nearly 20,000 year long encroachment into Europe. Given the small size and bellicosity of human groups at the time, if minimal interbreeding did occur, it was probably in the form of female Neanderthal captives.

- Neanderthals, physically stronger and enjoying equivalent and in some cases higher encephalization quotients than homo sapiens, are posited to have lost out due to a lack of syntax development in language (if they could speak at all). Complex communication was our ancestors weapon of mass destruction (and a crucially important part of human evolution).

- Modern humans are all descended from a single Adam and a single Eve (although the two come from different time periods; Adam estimated to have lived 59,000 years ago, Eve 150,000 years ago).

- Hobbes knew a lot more about human nature than Rousseau. The annual mortality rate suffered in war for our nomadic ancestors was in some cases as high as 30%--contemporarily, it is around .5%. In concert with our budding pacificism, our skulls have undergone gracilization and become more delicate. We're just not as pugnacious as we used to be.

- First-degree murder is not a uniquely human activity. Chimps do it all the time, preferring at least a three-to-one advantage, so that two of the assaulters can restrain the victim while the third pummels him to death.

- Human populations continue to evolve disparately from one another. Wade points out that it is conceivable that sometime in the future the divergence will be so substantial that various human groups will be unable to mate with one another and the homo sapien community will split into different species.

Microcephalin, which appeared for the first time around 37,000 years ago, is now carried by over two-thirds of Europe and East Asia. In sub-Saharan Africa, by contrast, from 0% to 25% of members of various populations carry it. ASPM, another brain gene, popped up in either the Middle East or Europe only 6,000 years ago, with about half of the population in these regions carrying it. It's less common in East Asians and virtually non-existent in sub-Saharan Africa. Thus far, the genes are known to determine brain size.

Given the increased need for long-term planning through gathering food for the winter, the increased stress of having to deal with rougher climates, and having to battle perpetually with Neanderthals in Europe and homo erectus in East Asia, it is not surprising that higher IQs and EQs are generally found in human populations that had to deal with these novel challenges that weren't faced in Africa.

- Babies look non-descript as a defense mechanism against potentially angry fathers who might refuse to care for the child or even kill it if it appeared to be the handiwork of zoot suiter. Further, I would speculate, the generic appearance of human infants made non-parental females (and do a lesser extent males) more likely to provide care and refrain from overly preferential treatment of some youngsters in the absence of the biological parent.

- Genghis Khan probably has more living descendants than anyone else in recorded history. Days after finishing Wade's book, I read a biography on Khan and it comes as no surprise that this illiterate nomad of the Central Asian steppes has inherited 8% of the former Mongolian empire (the largest the world has ever known). While Khan was generous in allowing his top generals to have women and treasure from the plundered communities that the Mongols devastated (customarily they slaughtered or enslaved all men as well as the elderly, often times after agreeing to accept a peaceful surrender), Khan got first dibs. His sons, including his inebriated successor, Ogodei, carried on the tradition.

- Geographical determinism inevitably leads to biological determinism, as evolutionary pressures begin acting upon disparate groups as soon as they separate, although the sequence may largely work the other way around. That is, settled communities that had abandoned nomadic existence predate agriculture by as much as 8,000 years. Sedentary life, seemingly so superior now, required substantial adaptations; namely living in large groups and having to trust strangers, as well as the development of a sense of trust and reciprocity. Agriculture was a chance discovery following the existence of human settlements.

Generally, humans have probably still not developed sufficiently to an urban existence, and this ability likely varies genetically.

The last 50,000 years of human existence has been characterized by disparate human populations interbreeding almost exclusively. Add in genetic drift and founder effects, and we have a very diverse human community. This suggests genetic diversity is undoubtedly a factor in the different behaviors, physiologies, temperaments, cognitive abilities, ad infinitum that we see displayed in various human populations today.

Much more in the book. It's worth the time if you can spare it.

1 comment:

jlhart7 said...

I just started reading Before the Dawn by Nicholas Wade, and I was googling the book when I found your blog post. I have not yet taken the time to read through your whole post on Human Biodiversity yet, but I plan on keeping the link and coming back to this interesting post later.