Monday, December 24, 2007


East German psychologist and geneticist Volkmar Weiss has some fascinating results here about IQ scores. He shows that the PISA tests -- annual comparisons between countries of educational achievement -- are little more than IQ tests. He uses this to convert PISA scores into IQ scores and shows that the PISA results correspond very closely to the IQ averages for different countries that are reported by Lynn & Vanhanen -- With Japan very high-scoring and African countries very low-scoring (for instance). Volkmar thinks that once the PISA people realize what they are testing, they will stop doing it! Because the PISA tests are very carefully conducted and use good sampling, however, the PISA data are at the moment a very robust body of information about IQ. And the fact that the tests are conducted annually allows trends over time to be tracked very closely -- a huge improvement over existing IQ data.

Using both the IQ test and PISA data, Volkmar shows that the simple upward trend in IQ scores shown in 20th century data by Flynn has now been shot to ribbons. Some countries are showing declining IQ scores, some are holding steady and some are rising. Volkmar relates this to the percentage of poor people in the country. Countries with lots of poor people are getting dumber overall and countries with few poor people are getting brighter. It is not clear why that is. It may well however be due to immigration. As genetically less able people from (say) Africa move into (say) Britain, they drag down the average of both IQ scores and income.

By and large however, Volkmar presents raw data so what you make of it is to some degree a function of how closely you study it. I hope someone who is really on top of the subject takes Volkmar's data and puts it into better order than I have done in my few remarks above. Both Lynn and Rushton are aware of the data so I am hopeful of comments from them soon.

If we have to wait for their comments to come out in the academic journals, however, "soon" may be two years away. The last academic journal article that I had published took two years to come out even AFTER being accepted for publication! Fooey to that! Anything academic that I do these days I just put straight on the net and that is that.

One point I have not heard anybody make is that the Flynn findings are actually among the stronger proofs that the black IQ handicap is genetic. The rise in IQ scores for most of the 20th century has to be an environmental effect as the time period was much too short for genetic change. But the black/white gap remained roughly the same throughout the period. So if cancelling out environmental factors left the gap unchanged the remaining influence on the gap must be genetic! IN THEORY, there could still be environmental influences on IQ scores that could be improved but the fact that the improvement has now flattened out shows that environmental factors have now IN FACT done about all they can do for the IQ scores of the populations concerned. And yet the gap remains. Eppur si muove.



Above pic via Peg Kaplan

Google has got better: I have had a few grouches in the past about various writings of mine on the net being invisible to Google. But there is no doubt that they are very good about archiving blog posts. They seem to treat us bloggers as some sort of net aristocracy -- if that is not getting too imaginative. I have been very pleased about how rapidly they archive posts on my new Telstra/Bigpond blog. I have just found that they have posts I put up there in their archive within a matter of hours. Nice that somebody is efficient and nice for a very new blog.

Quite a few bloggers have expressed disgust that Time magazine has put Russia's Vlad Putin on their cover and named him as man of the year. Publius Pundit is one of many who have pointed out that Time also put Hitler on its cover in 1938. Nobody seems to have mentioned, however, that Time had Hitler on their cover as recently as 1995. There is no doubt that Time finds socialists fascinating. Do we get a "woman of the year"? Hillary, no doubt.

KBJ has up another evisceration up of Brian Leiter, the mini-Chomsky and law-school thug: Another lovely Leftist with slippery ethics.

The rogue CIA again: "The CIA obstructed an official US commission investigating the September 11 attacks by withholding tapes of interrogations of Al-Qaeda operatives, according to former panel members quoted in a report on Saturday. A review of documents by former members of the 9/11 commission revealed the panel made repeated, detailed requests to the spy agency in 2003 and 2004 for information about the interrogation of members of the extremist network but were never notified of the tapes, the New York Times reported. The review of the commission's correspondence with the Central Intelligence Agency came after the agency earlier this month revealed it had destroyed videotapes in 2005 that showed harsh interrogations of two Al-Qaeda members. The review, written up in a memo prepared by Philip Zelikow, the former executive director of the 9/11 commission, said that "further investigation is needed" to resolve whether the CIA's failure to hand over the tapes violated federal law."

Fred Thompson wants to cut agricultural subsidies: "Farmers are not looking for a president to hand them something. Farmers want fair treatment and a chance to prosper in a free economy and that's what I would help ensure. There's a lot of programs we've got out there, some of which are good programs, some of which are not. And I think that we need to work our way through that and make sure we're doing what's good for the country, not just the farmers, not just the people of Iowa, not just the people of Tennessee. But good for the country. A sound policy that makes sense. I think there's a lot more that we could do for the working farmer in terms of ecological programs and environmental programs - land conservation, soil conservation - that would be fair and it would be beneficial to the nation and to Iowa and to our country. We're going to have to phase out the corporate welfare system we've got, however. There are extremely rich people living in skyscrapers in Manhattan that are receiving subsidy payments. I think that's wrong"

A very queer priest: "The Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis has informed that after a meeting with Archbishop Harry J. Flynn, Father Leo Tibesar, of Saint Frances Cabrini Parish in Minneapolis has agreed to remove from the parish website "any language from the St. Frances Cabrini parish website that is in opposition to Roman Catholic Church doctrine." Removed from the parish website was a page titled a "Statement of Reconciliation" which bemoaned Church teaching on sexual purity and married chastity and misrepresentied these teachings as a form of "oppression." The statement said the parish is committed to "Publicly bless the relationships of a same sex couple after the couple completes a process of discernment similar to that completed by heterosexual couples before marriage."


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"Why should the German be interested in the liberation of the Jew, if the Jew is not interested in the liberation of the German?... We recognize in Judaism, therefore, a general anti-social element of the present time... In the final analysis, the emancipation of the Jews is the emancipation of mankind from Judaism.... Indeed, in North America, the practical domination of Judaism over the Christian world has achieved as its unambiguous and normal expression that the preaching of the Gospel itself and the Christian ministry have become articles of trade... Money is the jealous god of Israel, in face of which no other god may exist". Who said that? Hitler? No. It was Karl Marx. See also here and here and here.

The Big Lie of the late 20th century was that Nazism was Rightist. It was in fact typical of the Leftism of its day. It was only to the Right of Stalin's Communism. The very word "Nazi" is a German abbreviation for "National Socialist" (Nationalsozialistisch) and the full name of Hitler's political party (translated) was "The National Socialist German Workers' Party".


1 comment:

kipwatson said...

You correctly point out that many pundits are opposed to Vladimir Putin. What you fail to point out is that their opposition is grounded in bigotry and idiocy.

As I wrote on, Putin is a great and good man. He rescued his people from the clutches of the Oligarchs, and brought his country back from not the brink, but the very depths of catastrophe. He has restored legitimacy, lawfulness and justice to a state in complete collapse, and has begun restoring their birthright to a people sold out utterly to a small clique of deeply evil men.

I'm overjoyed to see this wonderful country finally on the path back to the greatness it deserves. His opponents in the West are just the usual rabble of ignorant self-interested bigots. You ought to be embarrassed to associate yourself with them, John Jay Ray.