November 17, 2007

Who your relatives are matters

Henry Louis Gates writes in the NYT:

"I have been studying the family trees of 20 successful African-Americans, people in fields ranging from entertainment and sports (Oprah Winfrey, the track star Jackie Joyner-Kersee) to space travel and medicine (the astronaut Mae Jemison and Ben Carson, a pediatric neurosurgeon). And I’ve seen an astonishing pattern: 15 of the 20 descend from at least one line of former slaves who managed to obtain property by 1920 — a time when only 25 percent of all African-American families owned property.

"Ten years after slavery ended, Constantine Winfrey, Oprah’s great-grandfather, bartered eight bales of cleaned cotton (4,000 pounds) that he picked on his own time for 80 acres of prime bottomland in Mississippi. (He also learned to read and write while picking all that cotton.)"

Of course, he needs a control group of unsuccessful African-Americans to see if they are significantly less likely to be descended from black property owners (not to mention white property owners, who often tended to be the original source of wealth for their mulatto offspring who disproportionately made up the African-American middle class), but I would hardly be surprised that black people who make something of themselves today tend to be descended from black people who made something of themselves in the past. Similarly, economic historian Gregory Clark found that today's English tend to be descended from successful landowning farmers of the past, rather than from the propertyless poor who worked for them.

In summary, a lesson I've often pointed out is that we aren't self-made Ayn Rand heroes. Who your relatives are matters.

My published articles are archived at iSteve.com -- Steve Sailer

36 comments:

there's a hole in the bucket said...

"In summary, a lesson I've often pointed out is that we aren't self-made Ayn Rand heroes. Who your relatives are matters."

And, how exactly do you explain to the budding socialists that it's fair when such people start out with certain advantages and end up being more successful?

Fred said...

How many of Ayn Rand's heroes were self-made? It's been over a decade since I read Atlas Shrugged, but if memory serves, Dagny Taggart's father owned the railroad, and Francisco D'Anconia's father owned the copper business. Did she ever go into the family backgrounds of Ellis Wyatt, Hank Reardon, and John Galt? I don't remember. But I didn't get the sense from the book that Rand was saying that any of us could be a Hank Reardon, if we just applied ourselves; I think her point was that we should respect and be grateful for the Hank Reardons among us.

Reg C├Žsar said...

"...from at least one line..."

Huh? This phrase renders the whole thing almost meaningless.

This brings to mind those Southerners who remind us that "only 10%" of those in their region owned slaves or plantations or whatever. Then a majority of today's Southerners would descend from one of them in "at least one line", wouldn't they? New England had an even tinier percentage of slaveowners, but today's Yankee-stock genealogist will almost always find "at least one line" of them in his tree. (I know this from experience.)

The recency of the 1920 cutoff reduces this effect, to be sure, but that still leaves room for eight or so ancestral couples, only one of which need be successful to qualify a descendent.

Steve Sailer said...

A reader writes:

"There's nothing "astonishing" [his word] about Gates's
statistic. If we go back to great-grandparents (as Gates
does in his Winfrey example), then four relevant families
exist (by hypothesis) in 1920. At that time, according to
Gates, 25% of black families owned property. The probability
that "at least one" of the four relevant antecedent families
held property in 1920 is thus 1.0 - (0.75 x 0.75 x 0.75 x 0.75)
which is about 68%. Gates's sample of 20 yielded 75%. If
that's a significant difference, then I'm a professor of black
stuff at Harvard and NYT subeditors are numerate."

SFG said...

Nice job. You trace your lineage back to the one ancestor who was a bigshot, never mind the other hundred were losers. And everyone's related to the King of France if you go back far enough.

amir said...

I was going to make the same comment your reader made. Oprah had four male great-grandfathers so if one of them was a land owner that's exactly 25% like his statistics assumes. Or in other words for that one land owner there are three non land owners who also had a very successful great granddaughter.

Sudif said...

Does the study say anything about the ratio of successful black people with >=N property owning ancestors for N>1? Since people aren't paired off randomly, it seems likely that property owners (or their children) would have a higher probability than 25% to mix their genes with other property holding families'.

Anonymous said...

http://www.nytimes.com/2007/11/18/opinion/l18dna.html
NYTimes letters on the "In DNA Era, New Worries About Prejudice”

Lucius Vorenus said...

Steve Sailer: In summary, a lesson I've often pointed out is that we aren't self-made Ayn Rand heroes. Who your relatives are matters.

How can you be a Darwinist [or a biological determinist, or whatever], and possibly believe otherwise?

You get your DNA from your Mom & your Dad.

Not from space aliens.

Lucius Vorenus said...

Steve Sailer: Of course, he needs a control group of unsuccessful African-Americans to see if they are significantly less likely to be descended from black property owners...

A reader writes: The probability
that "at least one" of the four relevant antecedent families
held property in 1920 is thus 1.0 - (0.75 x 0.75 x 0.75 x 0.75)
which is about 68%.


Your reader is probably making a mistake in assuming independence.

Everything I've ever read indicates that the correlation between a husband's IQ and his wife's IQ is one of the strongest correlations in all of the social sciences, which is to say: By and large, smart people marry smart people, and dumb people marry dumb people.

It's not at all unreasonable to assume that there was an existing intelligence stratification among the blacks who were brought from Africa to America, and that freedom of choice in marriage [not to mention the associated curse of dysgenic fertility rates] has only served to exacerbate that stratification.

But, as Steve Sailer points out, a good control group would really help to delineate the stratification [assuming it existed, which I'm sure it did].

PS: I'd be really interested to know about the voter registration figures for those early Black property owners and for their descendants.

Something tells me that anywhere you can find an unbroken string of property-ownership* in the descent of a black family, you're probably disproportionately likely to stumble upon one of the 5% of all black families which continue to vote GOP [I believe that as recently as 1960, the GOP was still able to garner about 40% of the Black vote - for that matter, about 40% of the Jewish vote, as well].

Remember: Clarence Thomas's grandfather was dirt poor, but, humble though it may have been, he did own a coal distribution business.

*PPS: Especially business property ownership [as opposed to mere residential property ownership]. A man can go to government schools his entire life, take a job with the Post Office, and retire on government pensions, never having contributed a single productive hour to the economy in his entire life [in fact, having done nothing but leach off the taxpayers his entire life], yet still manage to acquire residential property along the way.

Back in the 1980's [or maybe the early 1990's], during the height of the Heathcliff Huxtable "Every Man" feel-good phenomenon, when it looked like the Reagan economic boom was finally getting black people off the dole and out into the world of the employed, somebody somewhere [I think it may have been in Commentary Magazine] published a statistic which indicated that something like 80% [???] of all employed black people were actually employed by some government entity [federal, state or local] - i.e. the [apparent] Reagan miracle of vanishing unemployment in the Black community was largely due to the cancerous expansion of the various governments [and, as Steve Sailer has pointed out, the decline in the use & quality of civil service exams probably didn't help matters].

I don't have any idea what the numbers look like today, but I'd be very curious to learn them.

[And I don't know that jobs like "Teamster Driver for UPS" fully qualify as true private-sector work.]

Of course, Affirmative Action has so totally screwed up the relationship between employment and [deserved] achievement that the statistics nowadays might very well be meaningless.

On the other hand, if it's true that the Black employment numbers are still largely due to government employment, then a really interesting genealogical/historical study would track the rise in black government [and pseudo-government] employment opposite the decline in black voting for GOP candidates.

Heck, the same thing is probably true in the Jewish community, as well: All of these Jewish lawyers and psychiatrists and NIH/NSF/DARPA/"NGO"-funded "scientists" and NEA/"NGO"-funded artistes are basically de-facto government employees, even if their employment is ostensibly in the private sector.

TabooTruth said...

Interesting reference to Atlas Shrugged. How do you explain it to a socialist? Socialism doesn't work. Relatives matter because while they give intelligent genes, selfish gene theory will make us act in our genetic interests. We will not work for some ambiguous state enterprise that takes our labor and gives the fruits of it back to everyone.

Ross said...

IIRC Thomas Sowell has frequently referred to studies that indicate that the descendants of Blacks who were free before the Civil War have have higher incomes on average than those ancestors were slaves until then. So Henry Louis Gates' finding shouldn't be a huge surprise.

The other day one of the posts here referred to the disproportionate accomplishment of people with surnames that indicate that their ancestors were literate centuries ago, such as Clark or Palmer. This seems to indicate the same sort of thing, family traits persisting down the generations long after the individual ancestors are forgotten.

Anonymous said...

What about Barry Obama? His ancestors were like big time operators in England and colonial America and such! Pretty impressive that these African dudes would be allowed to,you know,be such bigshots in such diverse places and times and,uhmmmm......Oh.Never mind!:)

Anonymous said...

Er,Oh ma gosh. I just listened to Bachs Air and danged if it isnt WSOP! Ha ha! Has anyone ever noticed,by the by,how the chord structure of the ubiquitous Canon in G Major seems to be used in "I Wanna Hold Your Hand"??

Steve Sailer said...

The comment function in Blogger seems to be intermittently malfunctioning, so here's another reader's comment:

I wanted to respond to the person who made the comment about correlation of spousal IQ. Blogger puked on me when I tried to comment.

It seems it may have gone through, but in case it didn't, here goes:
"I think the IQ correlation between spouses is a recent trend, given that women have the same educational/career/ travel opportunities as men do. I'm guessing looks and practical skills probably mattered more for women than did intelligence in an earlier era.

Thinking in my own past, my great-grandmother was a schoolteacher and my great-grandfather was an illiterate WWI vet. Perhaps they were well-matched intellect-wise, but stories my mother has told indicates that's not likely. Then my grandparents weren't exactly closely matched in intellectual pursuits. It was my parents' generation (boomers) where I can see the assortative mating, as it were. My aunts & uncles, and my parents, were definitely on a par with each other in terms of intelligence.

I think most IQ correlation from that earlier era would come mainly from geographical concentrations, as opposed to the type of education- and career-related pairing up that goes on more often now. Also, the internet factor in matching people up far more closely than one could do before."

SFG said...

Wonder if this has to do with the rise of autism too? Male nerds marrying the nerdiest women they can find or something?

Heck, the same thing is probably true in the Jewish community, as well: All of these Jewish lawyers and psychiatrists and NIH/NSF/DARPA/"NGO"-funded "scientists" and NEA/"NGO"-funded artistes are basically de-facto government employees, even if their employment is ostensibly in the private sector.
Um, whatever you want to say about the Jews they seem to be able to handle the private sector just fine.

As for government research, they do a lot of basic science that isn't profitable enough for the private sector. No, really.

Half Sigma said...

"How can you be a Darwinist [or a biological determinist, or whatever], and possibly believe otherwise?"

Steve's point, which is the same point I make on my blog all the time, is that a dumb kid born to rich parents is going to do a lot better in life than a dumb kid born to poor parents. But that doesn't change the fact that he was born with dumb genes.

Lucius Vorenus said...

another reader's comment: Also, the internet factor in matching people up far more closely than one could do before.

IANASS [I am not a Social Scientist], but I was under the impression that Spousal IQ correlation, in addition to being one of the strongest known correlations in the social sciences, was also one of the oldest known correlations in all of the social sciences.

Remember, it's the height of arrogance for us to believe that we are all that much different from our ancestors.

A smart man no more wanted to marry a stupid woman in 1707 than he would want to marry a stupid woman today, in 2007.

Dittoes for the ladies, and their choice of men.

You know, the two groups [smart & stupid] of people can't even hold conversations with one another - they don't laugh at the same jokes, they don't find the same topics fascinating [and I have long wondered if certain groups of people even experience a sense of fascination in the first place], their attention spans are radically different, etc.

Mike Judge actually did a pretty good job of depicting this phenomenon in Idiocracy - the Proles of the future laugh at Luke Wilson's character because he "sounds all faggy" when he talks.

By the way, I think this is also the underlying cause of the explosion in lesbianism amongst highly-educated women: Men will grudgingly marry down to stupid women [especially if those women have blond hair and bodacious tata's], but under no circumstances whatsoever will women marry men who are stupider than they.

Ergo a really smart girl has a whale of a difficult time finding a soul mate, becomes cynical about the whole process, and turns for solace to the latest & greatest of intellectual fads, which would be militant lesbianism.

Lucius Vorenus said...

ross: IIRC Thomas Sowell has frequently referred to studies that indicate that the descendants of Blacks who were free before the Civil War have have higher incomes on average than those ancestors were slaves until then.

By the time of the Revolutionary War, there were already numerous freedmen in the South, and many of them [and their ancestors] would go on to own slaves [in some states, they were even allowed to vote].

It's almost impossible to imagine that the Blacks who figured their way out of slavery, and started their own slave plantations, would not have been the smartest representatives of their race [I think the numbers are something on the order of 3000 black freedmen owning 20,000 black slaves, in 1860, and Walter Williams quotes a figure of 60,000 to 93,000 blacks - freedmen or slave - who served in the army of the CSA].

Lucius Vorenus said...

BTW, that figure of 3,000 freed blacks owning 20,000 slaves may have been for New Orleans alone.

And they weren't the only ones owning slaves:

Cherokees eject slave descendants
http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/americas/6416735.stm

Cherokees Pull Freed Slaves' Memberships
http://abcnews.go.com/US/wireStory?id=2921413

quo vadis scipio said...

And, how exactly do you explain to the budding socialists that it's fair when such people start out with certain advantages and end up being more successful?

let's demand of the "budding socialists" that they promise not embue their offspring with any "certain advantages" whatsoever. the "budding socialists" must promise not to leave any inheritance at all to their children. and let's not limit the concept of inheritance to tangible objects like money and property. let the "budding socialists" promise not to pass on any education or values or culture as all of that could be construed as a "certain advantages".

see how they like their own medicine. demand that they demonstrate zero hypocrisy and follow their own policy of inter-generational fairness: their offspring must have absolutely nothing. nothing at all. not good nutrition or even heat in the winter. those are definitely "certain advantages" compared to society's neediest.

in fact the most perceptive party members can extrapolate that it's "unfair" to even teach your child language. so that should be forbidden also. yes what should be demanded by the politburo is that the children of the revolution be loosed upon the world with no behavioral norms. no history. no identity. they should just be filthy starving naked shivering blank slates. once all of humanity is reduced to this primal state then the world will be a "fair" place.

Lucius Vorenus said...

sfg: Um, whatever you want to say about the Jews they seem to be able to handle the private sector just fine.

My point is that it would be very interesting to see how historical Jewish employment correlates with historical Jewish voting patterns [just as it would be very interesting to see how historical Black property ownership, especially historical Black commercial property ownership, correlates with historical Black voting patterns].

As recently as 1960, Richard Nixon received something like 40% of the Jewish vote [as well as 40% of the black vote] against JFK.

Nowadays, Dubyah [the greatest friend Israel has ever had, bar non] got something like 5% of the Jewish vote against Gore, and maybe 10% or 15% against Kerry.

The conjecture is that perhaps the Jews left the GOP because they are no longer employed as small businessmen [cobblers, hatmakers, jewelers, etc], but rather are now employed either directly in the government, or are heavily funded by the government [NIH, NSF, DARPA, etc], or are in professions [law, medicine, etc] which are so heavily regulated by the government that they are, for all intents and purposes, de facto government employees.

Evil Neocon said...

SVG -- Where do you have your figures for over-representation of Jews in government jobs? If anything Jews are (along with women and gays) over-represented in acting and writing in Hollywood, finance, trading, book publishing, and advertising.

The correlation seems more akin to urban, high-income, higher-order intelligence activities not involving manual labor. I.E. no painting, sculpture, dancing, etc. You don't see many Jews, Gays, or women for example in finish carpentry or among noted sculptors. [Ballet probably the exception for gays.] My own direct experience with procurement officials in the State governments of California, Colorado, New Hampshire, and Kansas have been that they are comprised of Latinos (almost all of CA procurement officialdom), Wasps (KS, NH), and Wasp-Black-Latino (CO).

Lucious -- I am not convinced that lesbianism is as widespread as the media hype would have you believe. Certainly there is the 60-40% female-male spread in non-Ivy colleges. And there is the famous map on Coyote Blog showing the concentration of young women to young men -- NYC has about the same split IIRC.

My explanation is a bit different. Naturally young men like young women and would like to be around them, particularly if there are more young women than young men. Why aren't these inequalities equalized, since young men should be equally mobile and able to pursue young women in NYC or non-Ivy colleges?

My answer is that with growing independence young (and older) women don't need to trade off status-power-social connections-dominance as before, and WILL SHARE a few high-value men among themselves. Sex and the City, Big Love, all seem to speak to that dynamic. Young men experiencing this dynamic understand they are not able to afford the entry price into the mating game. This is why they don't move to NYC or attend colleges, at least that's my working theory.

Naturally the closed-nature of many professions and hostile environment to white males in the College-University system is part of that reason. As is expensive living in NYC and much competition. But it also comes down to status in the mating game.

fifi said...

"Men will grudgingly marry down to stupid women [especially if those women have blond hair and bodacious tata's], but under no circumstances whatsoever will women marry men who are stupider than they."

I beg to differ with you. There are other factors besides looks and IQ - family, as in the topic of this post, and class to name a few. For instance, I dated a guy who was a bit smarter than me but who was a real ruffian also given to excess in spending and drinking. I knew I could look forward to an unending roller coaster ride with this guy. Then there was a guy I dated when I was younger and rejected because he wasn't intellectual enough but he had all the traits to become a good family man and his family had lots of professionals in it. With a choice between the two, I would've picked the one from the more functional family. Class/family can't be taken out of the equation. Of course, I figured there'd eventually be other options.

Anonymous said...

As an aside, Evil Neocon, you are not using the word WASP correctly, or at least in accordance with it's traditional meaning. I highly doubt the government procurement agents you were dealing with would qualify as WASPs. A WASP is not simply some yokel or bumpkin Protestant of Anglo-Saxon ancestry. While the term requires that the subject be white and of Northwest European descent (not necessarily British Isles), it also implies an upper or upper-middle class, educated, and often professional background and an old-line Protestant religious affiliation such as being an Episcopalian or Presbyterian (Methodists, Baptists, Evangelicals, Born-agains, etc. definitely don't count). The number of people in the US that could properly be called WASPs is actually relatively small (possibly smaller than the American Jewish population).

Please also note that the word could be considered pejoritive and offend people (similar to the word "kike" being applied to a Jew).

Lucius Vorenus said...

half sigma: Steve's point, which is the same point I make on my blog all the time, is that a dumb kid born to rich parents is going to do a lot better in life than a dumb kid born to poor parents. But that doesn't change the fact that he was born with dumb genes...

quo vadis scipio: let's demand of the "budding socialists" that they promise not embue their offspring with any "certain advantages" whatsoever...

Probably the most important thing which parents give to their child is the child's genes.

Stuff like religion, political affiliation, discipline, lessons in morality, and plain old-fashioned TLC are also very important [obviously], but, in general, they will have very little impact on what the child chooses to do with his life [or, more specifically: they will have very little impact on the range of options - GIVEN THE CHILD'S APTITUDES - from which the child will choose his career path].

I suppose it's theoretically possible [although highly unlikely] that a child with 100% dumb genes could have been born of two smart parents [the dumb genes would have to be recessive, and the smart genes dominant], but it's just about impossible to imagine [in the absence of some sort of artificial intervention] that a smart kid could be born to two parents, each with 100% dumb genes.

Lucius Vorenus said...

fifi: ...Then there was a guy I dated when I was younger and rejected because he wasn't intellectual enough but he had all the traits to become a good family man and his family had lots of professionals in it...

In the bidness, that's what we call, "Quad Erat Demonstrandum."

mnuez said...

The first comment annoyed me. The hole and the bucket and whatnot whines about the facts because he doesn’t like the implications. As must no-doubt realize by now, this is not the blog for such whines. We are precisely the people who care to know what the TRUTH is on any specific matter REGARDLESS of what the social or political implications of that truth are. No doubt his many responders made that clear to him.

Hah! Just kidding!

His many responders didn’t peep a syllable against Whole’s preference for comfortable untruths over uncomfortable truths. Rather they wasted some perfectly worthless cyberspace with rips against Socialism.

Now, in my opinion, Whole’s question is better than his responders’ (semi-)strawman answers. They make some valid points to be sure but by and large their enthusiasm kinna overwhelms reality, but that’s not really the point. The point is that Whole’s attitude is what should have been thrown in the dock.

If the truth regarding genetic ability lends itself toward Socialism (based on the “fair-play” tastes of the masses, who require equal strength in any match as a point of chivalry) then it does. You can still fight for YOUR OWN moral-aesthetic point of view wherein unequal partners thrown into the same ring is not in any way distasteful, but you ought to be willing to admit the truth (and to chastise those who would rather obfuscate it - even in their own minds) that the combination of genetic truths (eternally obvious ones, by the way) and the morality of the masses DOES INDEED lend itself toward Socialism, and though we may be horrified by that fact, we aren’t afraid to admit it as likely.

mnuez
www.mnuez.blogspot.com

Nigel Hyde-Stevens said...

While the term requires that the subject be white and of Northwest European descent (not necessarily British Isles), it also implies an upper or upper-middle class, educated, and often professional background and an old-line Protestant religious affiliation

WASP has increasingly come to mean any American of British descent, sometimes even Catholics. I have an uncle, a protestant-raised convert to Catholicism, who still refers to himself as a WASP.

And as a label, I'll take it, because European-American is just too weird, and in my view nobody more than 3 generations off the boat can rationally call himself any sort of hyphenated American. If a group is even be a group, and to have a group consciousness, then it needs a label. WASP is ours.

A pejorative? I don't think so. We frickin' built this country. We're the reason everyone else even wanted to come here. Eat our dust.

Martin said...

"A man can go to government schools his entire life, take a job with the Post Office, and retire on government pensions, never having contributed a single productive hour to the economy in his entire life [in fact, having done nothing but leach off the taxpayers his entire life], yet still manage to acquire residential property along the way."

Why are people always so down on the post office? We have one of the most efficient postal services in the world. Historically, it has been one of the most useful of government entities. I've never had a letter I've posted or was expecting go missing. I think they do a pretty good job.

Anonymous said...

Steve Sailer is a genuinely interesting thinker, but I swear his commenters are the biggest collection of cranks, retards, and sociopaths on the Internet. Jewish people depend on the public sector for employment? The postal service doesn't contribute to the economy? Smart kids aren't born to dumb parents?

Lucius Vorenus said...

anonymous: Jewish people depend on the public sector for employment?

Again, the conjecture: Is there a correlation between Jewish public-sector employment, and [heavily regulated] pseudo-public sector employment, and the collapse in the Jewish GOP vote?

Dittoes with Black employment, or Black [commercial] property ownership, and the collapse in the Black GOP vote.

anonymous: The postal service doesn't contribute to the economy?

No. It does not. There's not a thing the postal service does which couldn't be done better by UPS or FedEx, and, with the advent of email, there really isn't a single thing that the postal service does anymore which is of any importance to the economy.

All my postal service does is help me to fill the local landfill with cubic yard upon cubic yard of mindless, idiotic, inane junkmail.

anonymous: Smart kids aren't born to dumb parents?

Probably not, in general, but the more specific assertion was: If 100% of the genes of the parents [father dominant & father recessive, mother dominant & mother recessive] are dumb genes, then, barring something like divine intervention, the children will surely be inheriting 100% dumb genes themselves.

Anonymous said...

To Nigel Hyde-Stevens:

I agree that the word WASP has recently become more inclusive. ("Liberal" today doesn't mean the same thing today as when Friedrich Hayek wrote "The Road to Serfdom" either.) Note, however that I said: "or at least in accordance with it's traditional meaning."

As to the term WASP being a pejorative, many WASPs (as an (nominal) Episcopalian of English descent, I count myself as one) don't perceive the word as an insult because of their (perhaps false) sense of security with their social status. Ethnic slurs tend to be more biting when one is socially insecure with their own status. After all, how many whites really take great offense when called a "honkey" or "cracker" by a black person? The offense taken is generally much less than the offense taken by a black American when called any of the numerous racial epithets used to denigrate blacks because, fundamentally, most whites would rather not trade places and be black (a few hip-hop enthusiasts aside) and do not take offense from what seems to be the pathetic lashing out of someone of lower status. However, the term WASP, invented by Andrew Hacker (Jewish?), and popularized by Penn Prof. E. Digby Baltzell (a disgusting example of a self-hating WASP calling for the demise of his own people), is often used as a pejorative, particularly in academic circles and social science and humanities literature. I also note that the majority of instances where I have seen the word WASP used as a pejorative, the person using or writing the word has been jewish (often an academic), and seems to be angered by a real or perceived ethnic conflict where Jews were resisted achieving some goal by the previous American Protestant elite (such as pre WWII Ivy-league quotas). Additionally, I grew up in a heavily Jewish area of the US and often heard the word used by Jews, even by Jewish friends, in a negative manner - and was astounded at their apparent lack of consideration that the term might be offensive given that they would not have been to happy if I had spoken of Jews as they did of people of my ethnic background. My mother was an Academic and considered, but ultimately decided not to file a complaint against a Jewish colleague who defamed her behind her back to fellow colleagues as "a spoiled, ignorant WASP" because of a legitimate academic disagreement.

the whole bucket said...

"If the truth regarding genetic ability lends itself toward Socialism (based on the “fair-play” tastes of the masses, who require equal strength in any match as a point of chivalry) then it does. You can still fight for YOUR OWN moral-aesthetic point of view wherein unequal partners thrown into the same ring is not in any way distasteful, but you ought to be willing to admit the truth (and to chastise those who would rather obfuscate it - even in their own minds) that the combination of genetic truths (eternally obvious ones, by the way) and the morality of the masses DOES INDEED lend itself toward Socialism, and though we may be horrified by that fact, we aren’t afraid to admit it as likely."

Mnuez, I'm surprised that someone as intelligent as you would find socialism palatable. High IQ doesn't necessarily lead to high earnings. What I think people like Steve are trying to do is keep our academic standards from being further debased by anti-intellectualism. I've known some uneducated people of average IQ who are great at making a living but wouldn't be good doctors or scientists. So to say treat someone like they are handicapped because another group of people has a higher IQ is to create a situation where people who punished for their good fortune at being born geniuses.

Looking specifically at the smaller black communities that exist in cities, you will notice they have restaurants, beauty shops, etc that cater to their subculture. IQ isn't everything but to try to level the playing field so that someone with an IQ of 85 has as good a chance of being an astronaut as someone with an IQ of 140 is ridiculous. But that is exactly what's being done in the name of egalitarianism.

PS: I'm sorry you took my comment as a whine. The truth is, no matter what the truth is, there are radical elements in our society who will twist it to suit their own nefarious purposes - i.e. punishing people who are smarter. As of yet, we don't insist that beautiful people go around without make-up or force them to get bad haircuts. How is it that we accept differences in attractiveness but not differences in intelligence? I mean I resent the hot chicks getting all the attention (even stuffed my bra once only to discover that guys do treat sexier women better) but I don't feel that I can't have a good life as a plain jane. So why are people who never open a book so sensitive about IQ?

Nigel Hyde-Stevens said...

After all, how many whites really take great offense when called a "honkey" or "cracker" by a black person? - anon

Interesting, Anon.

Whether the term is WASP, cracker, or honky, if it serves to stir up group identification and cohesion where presently there is none, then I am glad to have it. If someone calls me a WASP, I will say you're damn right - and obviously your ancestors had no problem with that or else they wouldn't have come here.

All my postal service does is help me to fill the local landfill with cubic yard upon cubic yard of mindless, idiotic, inane junkmail. - Lucius

Sorry Lucius, but you seem to have taken a stupid pill today. Usually your comments are more intelligent. That junk mail you detest is sitting in your mail box because some number of companies have determined it serves an economically useful purpose for them.

There are lots - and lots and lots - of lazy government employees who fill no economically useful role. You can start with the EEOC, filled top to bottom with blacks, whose main purpose appears to be to force private sector companies to keep worthless employees. The EEOC, if you will, is a force multiplier for worthless, no good employees.

But don't rag the postal service too much. They have for some time been a quasi-private enitity, required by the government to pay their own way.

You also dissed "Teamster UPS drivers." Having paid my way through college working such a job, I can assure you those guys earn every dime they make. You try doing that job the month before Christmas or when the heat index is hitting triple digits - in a brown truck with no AC. 3 gallons of water and Gatorade a day is not unheard of.

Are the unions unjustifiably exerting upward pressure on the wages of UPS and postal workers? Perhaps. But the open borders nonsense that began in earnest nearly two decades ago has been exerting downward pressure, too. God only knows what the "correct" wage should be.

Is it immoral for the workers to have a union? Well, capital is (very well) organized. Why can't labor be, too?

Nogel Hyde-Stevens said...

Again, the conjecture: Is there a correlation between Jewish public-sector employment, and [heavily regulated] pseudo-public sector employment, and the collapse in the Jewish GOP vote? - Lucius

Well, that is an interesting and worthy question, but I doubt it amounts to much. Besides, in a nation with 30-40% of GDP going to government, lots of people are directly or indirectly employed by it.

The Jews who do work for the government - disproportionately in academia and science-related fields - are serving a useful purpose, and could easily work elsewhere. I don't know what fraction of, say, CDC scientists are jewish, but I'm sure glad to have them around.

There are certainly lots of Jewish lawyers who benefit from the status quo as regards lawsuits. Those guys favor the political party that places a low value on property rights, because it allows them to seize lots of property.

The argument does work for blacks, however, who benefit from the government's reduced standards and from high job security. Whenever I go to New York the first thing I notice is how every single member of the transit department is black - all of them.