10 November 2010

NYTimes Discovers, Denies Racial IQ Differences

Update 30 November 2010: I am adding a more rigorous graphic portraying SAT score by race by SES. The source of the image is sociologist La Griffe du Lion.   SAT math scores are a fair proxy for IQ scores, and this graphic illustrates the clear and sustained gap between white and black scores, all the way across the SES spectrum.  More observant readers would have already noticed the contradiction in the graphic further down (2nd image down), showing IQ scores and IQ gap by SES.  Despite the IQ gap remaining at about 1 SD (15 points) all the way up the SES spectrum, the PC graphics designers chose to narrow the IQ gap as the SES rose.   Such gratuitous editorials-in-graphics form give social science a bad name.   I left the IQ gap graphic in despite a number of problems, to see if any reader would point out the most obvious one -- the erroneous narrowing of the gap.  Please try harder next time.  ;-)
In tony suburban Shaker Heights, Ohio, funding is generous, support programs aimed at black students (about half of the student population, not an alienated minority) abound, there is no ability tracking (students track themselves), and such racism as can be found is too intermittent to destroy the academic curiosity of a human being of normal resilience. Yet blacks there cluster at the very bottom of the school _McWhorter

We know that blacks -- particularly black males -- lag in academic and professional achievement worldwide, whenever pitted against members of any race except Australian aboriginals. There is no limit to the number of excuses given for why blacks cannot compete -- poverty, a sick culture, racial discrimination, legacies of slavery, a history of tropical diseases, lack of role models... A new report described in the NYTimes takes another look at the "achievement gap." The report finds that poverty cannot be used as a credible excuse -- the achievement gap starts at the earliest stages of life, even among wealthy blacks.
“There’s accumulating evidence that there are racial differences in what kids experience before the first day of kindergarten,” said Ronald Ferguson, director of the Achievement Gap Initiative at Harvard. “They have to do with a lot of sociological and historical forces. In order to address those, we have to be able to have conversations that people are unwilling to have.” _NYT_via_IHE

The achievement gap only widens as children grow older, as can be seen by comparing testing results for all age groups. There is a good argument to be made that only 4% of American Blacks are qualified for a rigorous 4 year college degree -- regardless of their socioeconomic class or preparatory training.

The denial of human biodiversity (HBD) goes deep in American academia and general culture. Genetics is a relatively new science compared to political and economic philosophy, and will require time to be integrated into the general psyche -- particularly when it is fighting against embedded prejudice.

The sheer persistence of the racial achievement gap across time and geographic space argues for a more rigorous examination of its causes -- no holds barred, no topic off the table for research and publication. That is the only way to achieve as level a playing field as we will ever get, and it will require the deepest understanding of genetics possible.
This map shows IQs of indigenous people for various continents and nations. European and East Asian people evolved to average population IQs of roughly 100 or slightly higher. Most of the rest of the world's population IQ average is somewhere between 80 and 95. Only among African and Australian aboriginals does one find average population IQs which are so low as to allow one to foresee a worldwide stratification in achievement whenever these low-IQ groups might be paired against higher-IQ groups in an academic or professional achievement race.

This is basic information that has been known since the early 1900s when reliable psychometric testing first became available. How ironic that it is those claiming to be most educated and sophisticated who are the slowest to comprehend the obvious -- and to use that information in order to help those who lag. For it is the persistent denial of basic facts which holds those who lag down, without any genuine hope.

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Blogger gtg723y said...

Perhaps the source of denial is due to the understanding that there is nothing we can do about it. If we look at the information and say OK its there. Then what? There is no amount of early education that will help them catch up, as soon as they become adults all the ground they gain will be lost. So trying to bolster their IQ when the brain is most plastic has proven to help the individual reach his personal best, but the gap still remains. While I am not opposing helping every individual reach their personal best how much resources should we waste on trying to achieve something that is physically not possible to achieve? Or is that your point. That we should go Libertarian and let people make their own decisions and stop wasting tax payer money on a mobius strip time line of in-achievement.

Wednesday, 10 November, 2010  
Blogger gtg723y said...

I would also like to add that in a previous article posted by you there was research that showed that we did not make Neanderthals go extinct but incorporated their population in with ours. The only population groups that show neanderthal genetic sequences are Europeans and Asians. Perhaps that is the true source of the IQ gap. My other theory is that living in norther latitudes meant you had to be efficient and intelligent to feed your self and so the dumb European and Asian people starved or froze to death. On a side note Asain monkeys tend to be smarter too, perhaps for that reason.

Wednesday, 10 November, 2010  
Blogger Bruce Hall said...

Perhaps I missed the discussion about IQ in McWhorter's essay, but his quote was regarding Black American anti-intellectualism, not IQ deficits. More specifically, his comments regarding Black immigrants and their greater achievements compared to U.S. blacks would bolster. His view of a cultural rather than biological deficit.

Wednesday, 10 November, 2010  
Blogger al fin said...

gtg: But there is something we can do about it, once we understand in depth what is going on. But just asking early questions with that end in mind can destroy a person's career, due to political correctness. PC is killing the ones it claims to protect. Too bad.

As for neanderthals, that research is in a state of hot flux. Stay tuned.

Bruce: Very true. The quote from McWhorter pertained to the lack of achievement among upper class blacks -- even when all of the usual excuses have been dispensed with. McWhorter's argument is that the "acting white" smear used by blacks against high-achieving blacks, is used by fellow blacks to keep blacks down.

Thomas Sowell has a very similar cultural argument to explain the achievement gap.

But it simply will not do, once you look at all the evidence.

Genetics comes into play at the core of the matter,statistically, no matter who feels uncomfortable about it.

Bruce, the graph at the top of the post clearly contradicts itself. Yet I posted it anyway, just as I posted a McWhorter quote knowing that McWhorter subscribes to the culture argument.

Contradiction. You can't create a world without it. It spurs us to learn more, to resolve the contradiction.

When political correctness or other forces come into play to stop one from learning and asking questions, a very big problem arises.

It is crucial that we understand crucial differences between us, and be able to apply accurate explanations without interference from well-intentioned censors.

Wednesday, 10 November, 2010  
Blogger Sword S said...

I say, we should change media to portray the life of the poor in a glorious way. Put the hollywood machine to work so that people disdain luxury and see poverty in a good light. This will bar ambition from things that might simply be out of reach of the lowest achievers without resorting to crime.

Along the way we should also guarantee employment of some sort for these individuals. That way they'll be able to attain the life hollywood and the media would have portrayed to them as the good life.

Such satisfaction could very well help maintain those at the bottom happy and content while doing the lower jobs that for now are necessary.

Wednesday, 10 November, 2010  
Blogger al fin said...

Potentate: You may have a point. During the great depression years, Hollywood often adopted exactly that strategy. As the Obama depression deepens, newer producers and directors may take your advice.

On the other hand, Hollywood's current strategy of promoting violence, delinquency, permanent drug holidays, cheating, and expensive ways of wasting time and wasting minds, may turn out alright in the end.

You just never know.

Friday, 12 November, 2010  

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“During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act” _George Orwell

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