December 18, 2012

2011 NAEP vocabulary results by state

The feds' National Assessment of Educational Progress has a table of 4th and 8th grade vocabulary and reading comprehension scores by state. Sample size issues are of concern for smaller states which tend to bounce around, but we can state with a high degree of statistical confidence that the future of the state of California, the traditional State of the Future, looks dumb. Out of the 50 states, the Golden State ranks 48th, 47th, 48th, and 49th on various measures. Here's the bottom six of 52 in the four different tests:
In contrast, Massachusetts is 1st, 1st, 1st, and 1st, while the District of Columbia was 52nd, 52nd, 52nd, and 52nd (in case you are wondering why D.C. is the 52nd state, Department of Defense schools rank 2nd, 5th, 2nd, 6th). Obviously, the problem is all those Republicans in California and D.C. If only D.C. would develop enlightened political opinions like Massachusetts, its test scores would soar.

Perhaps more relevantly, Texas is 37th, 36th, 37th, and 36th. Texas always beats California on the NAEP. Has anybody studied this to make sure this is not just a test artifact (e.g., Texas cares about the NAEP and California doesn't)? If it isn't, why the consistent difference? Texas is pretty bad, but it's not as bad as California, and beggars can't be choosers, so somebody ought to be investigating why Texas beats California.

One obvious objection is that the future isn't as bad as it looks because Hispanics, as new immigrants, are just being held back by the inevitable biases of testing skills in English. 

Indeed, this effect does exist, but how big is it? Here's national 8th grade vocabulary. The first number is score at the 10th percentile, then 25th, 50th, 75th and 90th. 

Let's first compare whites and Asians. At the 10th percentile, Asians lag whites by 8 points. Presumably, a fair number of these Asian 8th graders just got off the plane from China, so their English vocabulary is limited. At the 25th percentile, the White-Asian gap is down to 5 points. At the median, it's 3, at the 75th percentile it's 0, and at the 90th percentile, Asians are out in the lead by a point. 

Now, compare Hispanics to blacks, most of whom grow up speaking English, but as we all know from hundreds of articles, African-Americans grow up in conditions that would drive a Trappist Monk crazy for lack of speech. In black homes, nobody every talks, watches TV, or listens to rap music. So, black scores on language are bad, with unfortunate long-term consequences. 

At the 10th percentile, where many of the Hispanics are newcomers, blacks lead by 2 points. At the 25th percentile, however, Hispanics are out in front by 1 point, by 2 at the median, 3 at the 75 percentile, and 4 at the 90th. 

So, clearly, Hispanics who have all the advantages are, on average, a little smarter than blacks who have all the advantages. In other words, if immigration were shut off for a generation or two, Mexicans would appear, on average, perceptibly more on the ball academically than blacks. Indeed, that was my perception back in the 1970s in L.A., where the Chicanos had mostly been a stable population since WWII.

But, nationally, Hispanics only pick up 6 points on blacks going from the 10th to the 90th percentiles, while Asians pick up 9 points on whites, who are, to be frank, a lot more competition.

Being a little smarter than blacks is, well, good. Or, you could say with equal justice, less bad. On the other hand, Hispanics at the 90th percentile among Hispanics, typically those with all the advantages, are simply not playing in the same league as Asians and whites with all the advantages. They're down there beating out blacks for third place, not being nationally competitive. There's not a lot of high end in the Hispanic population. 

However you look at it, it's still not very encouraging considering that our leadership kind of bet the country on Hispanics.

63 comments:

Anonymous said...

Well, Texas combines public and private schools but probably their whites and hispanics due do better. Their graduation rates are in a way inflated they were better white states with the new measure which is easier. According to Frontline a liberal group in the famous drop-out nation about a Houston school they allow a lot of poor students mainly hispanic and afro-american and some bad performing whites to go the online route to finished high shcool. The online route was used for homeschoolers who are christian and mainly white and porbably decent students.

Anonymous said...

I grew up prior to prop 13 when California fund the schools like New York and New Jeresey and in those days particulary in the 1970's in the Garden Grove School district which was mainly white then with some hispanics it was a medocre education. Its worst now, probably today's Irvine district because of the asians is better than GG was in the 1970's.

Anonymous said...

"However you look at it, it's still not very encouraging considering that our leadership kind of bet the country on Hispanics."

The issue isn't 'can Hispanics count and add?'. It's 'will Hispanic numbers add up to undermining white power?'

So, the issue isn't whether Hispanics can add but whether can we add up Hispanic numbers to the the magic number that will destroy whites for good.

Anonymous said...

Not 'can Hispanics add?', but 'can we add up the Hispanics?'

Anonymous said...

When Omar Thorton killed all those whites, where were the gun control advocates?

Anonymous said...

Is there a test for grammar and usage?

buwaya said...

Disaggregate the state results by race, which used to be available in the NAEP reports, and you will see Texas doing much better than nearly all states. Not quite up to Massachusetts, but not far from it. Texas whites, blacks and hispanics outperform their peers nearly anywhere. Overall in various studies that equalize social background such as family income, free lunch qualification, etc., Texas blows away all states in NAEP.
California however does even worse disaggregated.

buwaya said...

If one disaggregates NAEP scores by race Texas blows away most other states.
There was a Rand study maybe 15 years ago that adjusted Texas scores by all significant social factors and Texas came out #1.
The data is spotty pre-Prop 13, but what I have seen (I think it was another Rand study that compiled it) seems to show California was always bad.

Anonymous said...

I took a shellacking here a few months ago for claiming a gerund wasn't a verb, but a noun; I imagine it was from one of your many Massachusetts readers.

rightsaidfred said...



The non-competitive nature of our new people is a feature, not a bug. Less competition for spots at the top.

Nice short run strategy.

Anonymous said...

It would be interesting to see the Hispanic data further disaggregated, by nationality, ethnicity, and class. Cubans and old-stock Tejanos aren't the future; central and southern Mexican campesinos are, demographically speaking.

I'd imagine the results would be even bleaker if they reflected the fastest-growing segments of the Hispanic population rather than throwing together everyone who happens to have a surname from the politically correct side of the Pyrenees.

Is there such disaggregated data out there?

Anonymous said...

LOL...It's amusing to see all these usage errors and typos in comments on a post about vocabulary skills.

I'm sympathetic to HBD, but why not take a deep breath, slow down and proofread your comments before submitting? Believe me, we are not on the edge of our seats waiting for your bon mots to hit the Internet.

Anonymous said...

It would be nice if there were an open discussion thread on the site somewhere for OT stuff like the little riot in Sweden today over some Instagram pics or something. Apparently amongst a few hundred people beating each other up, etc. there were no blonds.

Anonymous said...

Well, Texas blacks and hispanics still are way behind whites in other states, so it doesn't matter I read one study that shown Texas Mexicans in the bottom 12 in 2002 and many small white states had Mexicans with higher scores like Wyoming and Albuquerque in New Mexico had higher scores than Houston or Dallas and higher graduation rates. This was the 150 largest school districts in the nation. I think overall Texas does better than New Mexico with Mexicans but not the large districts. Maybe its hype that Texas blacks and Mexicans do better when both blacks and Mexicans do much better in Wyoming.

Anonymous said...

Are we seeing the rise of the Volume Killer? Does it have something to do with our culture?

Compare Oswald, Chapman, and Hinckley with the recent spate of mass killers.

In old Hollywood action movies, violence was moralized. So, there was good guy and bad guy. Gradually, the story developed, and the good guy had to face off with the bad guy. And the violence was limited to the business at hand and between the good guy and bad guy. Like in Budd Boetticher westerns.
So, violence was an expression of right vs wrong, not style and extravagance for its own sake.

But then, there was the rise of a new kind of action film where morality is no longer an issue or merely an excuse to serve up tons of mayhem. And the violence is about resolving a moral conflict but being badass and cool and blowing up half the town. It's violence for violence sake.
What mattered was not so much right vs wrong but body count and the sheer outrageousness of the violence. As Betrand Tavernier said of the remake of 3:10 to YUMA, the remake is less about story and more about 'how many get blown away'.

Now, Oswald, Chapman, and Hinckley were nuts, but they 'moralized' and limited what they did. Oswald spun a narrative of himself as a dedicated communist killing an American imperialist. He aimed at Kennedy and only wanted to kill Kennedy. He had a specific target in relation to his moral narrative. Same with Chapman. He loved Lennon but came to see Lennon as a phony. So, Lennon had to die, but only Lennon. Chapman didn't shoot Yoko or others on the street. And Hinckley saw himself as a crusader to save Jodie Foster and aimed at Reagan. Totally sick, but even he had a moral narrative for what he did.

But when we look at Loughner, Cho, Holmes, Lanza, Columbine kids, Northern Illinois kid, and etc, I mean WHAT THE FUC*. There is no moral narrative. It's just mad volume killing. There is no specific 'moral target'. It's like the goal is to kill as many as possible. There's an element of funhouse terrorism here.

Is it merely a coincidence or does it reflect the changes in our culture from one of 'moral conflict' to 'nihilistic narcissism'?
John Wayne was tough but a moral character and he limited his violence to getting at bad guys. And violence was used as the last resort.
But in movies by Tarantino and the like, violence is like fun fireworks for the hell of it. And sadism is cool, and blasting away as many as possible is supposed to be hilarious and liberating.

Some people just gotta get richer and richer. Some people must gotta kill as many as possible.
And in movie culture, what matters is not so much the movie as box office numbers.
It's all about numbers, about volume.

Steve Sailer said...

Texas 15-year-olds beat California 15-year-olds on Project Talent, a huge post-Sputnik federal test in 1960.

Anonymous said...

The scheme, elements of which were carried out for most of Mr. Garcia’s nearly six-year tenure, centered on a state-mandated test taken by sophomores. Known as the Texas Assessment of Knowledge and Skills, it measures performance in reading, mathematics and other subjects. The scheme’s objective was to keep low-performing students out of the classroom so they would not take the test and drag scores down, according to prosecutors, former principals and school advocates.

Students identified as low-performing were transferred to charter schools, discouraged from enrolling in school or were visited at home by truant officers and told not to go to school on the test day. For some, credits were deleted from transcripts or grades were changed from passing to failing or from failing to passing so they could be reclassified as freshmen or juniors.

Others intentionally held back were allowed to catch up before graduation with “turbo-mesters,” in which students earned a semester’s worth of credit for a few hours of computer work. A former high school principal said in an interview and in court that one student earned two semester credits in three hours on the last day of school. Still other students who transferred to the district from Mexico were automatically put in the ninth grade, even if they had earned credits for the 10th grade, to keep them from taking the test.

“He essentially treated these students as pawns in a scheme to make it look as though he was achieving the thresholds he needed for his bonuses,” said Robert Pitman, the United States attorney for the Western District of Texas, whose office prosecuted Mr. Garcia.

Another former principal, Lionel Rubio, said he knew of six students who had been pushed out of high school and had not pursued an education since. In 2008, Linda Hernandez-Romero’s daughter repeated her freshman year at Bowie High School after administrators told her she was not allowed to return as a sophomore. Ms. Hernandez-Romero said administrators told her that her daughter was not doing well academically and was not likely to perform well on the test.

Ms. Hernandez-Romero protested the decision, but she said her daughter never followed through with her education, never received a diploma or a G.E.D. and now, at age 21, has three children, is jobless and survives on welfare.

“Her decisions have been very negative after this,” her mother said. “She always tells me: ‘Mom, I got kicked out of school because I wasn’t smart. I guess I’m not, Mom, look at me.’ There’s not a way of expressing how bad it feels, because it’s

Derek Brown said...

Fruit Loop Con (crunchy kind of fruity) Dreher is stealing your tricks Mr. Sailer

http://www.theamericanconservative.com/dreher/kenneth-parcell-is-getting-married/

Anonymous said...

Waiting for Nick Diaz...

Derek Brown said...

I believe that Iowahawk disaggregated out the scores of one standardized test and compared Wisconsin to Texas finding that Texas was superior in all three races. I know for instance that I took the PSAT national merit for Texas was 217 was 226 for Massachuettes.

Anonymous said...

The oil and defense industries in Texas draw in a lot of competent professionals, investors, and businessmen from around the country. Especially Houston, Dallas, and Austin (whose test scores are pretty high for an urban district).

Texas Hispanics are also quite a bit whiter than California Hispanics. Partly due to interrmarriage and partly because Texicans are often drawn from northern Mexico. From what I've read, it's also common for middle class Mexicans to migrate to Texas, especially with the recent drug-related violence.


Anonymous said...

Oh, boy, all you good progressives: in not too long, the whole of the US will be as productive, as innovative, as industrious, as advanced as MEXICO!

OH, YAY!


Anonymous said...

What do you race realists say about Alaska and WV's poor showing?

Anonymous said...

Can any of this be attributed to highly assimilated individuals claiming to be White or even Asian instead of Hispanic?

Nick Diaz said...

"Oh, boy, all you good progressives: in not too long, the whole of the US will be as productive, as innovative, as industrious, as advanced as MEXICO!

OH, YAY!"

I resent that.

Anonymous said...

California is a failed jurisdiction, its failure hidden in plain sight. Vienna in the spring of 1914 seemed liked a really hip & happening place too.

Kylie said...

"LOL...It's amusing to see all these usage errors and typos in comments on a post about vocabulary skills.

I'm sympathetic to HBD, but why not take a deep breath, slow down and proofread your comments before submitting?"


Do you want to be amused by our mistakes or don't you?

"Believe me, we are not on the edge of our seats waiting for your bon mots to hit the Internet."

Believe me, we are not on the edge of our seats waiting for your approval.

Foreign Expert said...

Why is Rhode Island so much worse than Massachusetts? One would think that its population mix is essentially identical to eastern Mass. (Basically like Connecticut.)

Anonymous said...

The score for whites in the top ten percent reflects that Jews are the smartest race and are dragging up the score for the average white.

The score for Asians in the top 75% reflects that Asians are smarter than the average white, outscoring white people despite a language disadvantage amongst Asians and the advantage white people have with Jews skewing their results higher.

Anonymous said...

15-20% of Alaska's population is native, and I think the proportion is way higher among the school-age population.

WV... well, not all white populations are created equal (we believe in HBD here, right?) and it's been subjected to the same brain drain as the Midwestern states over the last few decades.

Anonymous said...

Steve, in the absence of a dedicated post re: the Sandy Hook Massacre, I found an HBD angle either you or the commentariat might be interested in.

I thought to international graph homicide rates vs gun ownership per capita, and found that someone had already made the graph. See here:

http://diegobasch.com/homicides-vs-gun-ownership

However, it's very interesting. When you look at the graph you will immediately see what intrigued me. I'll repost a variant of my comment here.

The striking thing about this graph is that it appears as though an appropriate hyperbola drawn would bound all of the points. The equation for this line would be approximately y=500/x. I’m going to coin this the “Feeling Lucky” Limit. You will notice that there are no points that exist to the upper right of this hyperbola, and that there are not many either on that line or approaching it. You will notice that most nations lie very near the axes.

Within a given population, most potential murderers will only attempt murder if they feel that they can get away with it (i.e. not be shot in the process). The higher percentage of people who are armed, the less the chances are for someone to be able to commit murder without being killed in the process. The two extremes are a completely disarmed country, where any thug who thinks he can get away with murder, will. The other extreme is an armed country where the risk of murder without dying in the process or triggering some sort of retaliation is prohibitive.

Phrases or sayings that come to mind: “An armed society is a polite society”; “Mutually Assured Destruction”; “The great equalizer”.

Most countries cluster on either axis. The presence of a few guns is enough to dissuade most people from murdering, it appears. However, countries with a more risk averse population (or alternatively, groups of gangs that effectively lower the risk of a gang member getting killed, but do nothing to prevent a non-gang affiliated person being killed) will lie closer to that line.

Evidently there are factors that stop people murdering in some disarmed countries. For example, an effective police force or an innately non-homicidal population. But it does seem as though the presence of guns acts as a limit to homicide, an armed society being one in which the possibility of being killed either in the act or through revenge is a distinct possibility, and hence a “polite” society.

It’s also not surprising that the knee jerk response is to think that banning guns is going to reduce murder. There appears to be little evidence to support that position.

Mutually Assured Destruction was/is counterintuitive as well. The fortunate thing with small arms is that if the mutually assured destruction thing fails to deter, the worst possible failure is on the order of the Norway Massacre (maybe 60 killed) and individual murders here and there, not the whole world being rendered unlivable.

Anonymous said...


There are some other factors that are involved as well. If you have a country that consists of people competent enough that a competent police force may be formed, they are also going to have the sort of competence that builds a high enough GDP/capita to afford guns if their citizens are allowed to have them. These sorts of countries are mainly found in Europe and America. (East Asian countries are competent, with competent police, no guns, and non-homicidal populace.)

Along the axis of no guns/ lots of murder, you have incompetent government, incompetent police, and the sort of general incompetence that does not lead to the sort of GDP/capita sufficient to let the average person buy weapons. The African nations all line up on this axis - no guns, lots of murders. Near them are the South American nations.

I guess this does raise the question of whether it's the GDP that is dropping the murder rates, or the inherent non-homicidalness of the population. Paraguay is perhaps in interesting case in point. 95% Mestizo, it has a murder rate much less than its neighbors. Perhaps in that case it is the percentage of gun ownership that is holding down the murder rate.

Anonymous said...

What do you race realists say about Alaska and WV's poor showing?

Would you be surprised to learn that there is large number of whites with low IQ?

Anonymous said...

Alaska: Dumbed down by the large indian presence up there and the military population cycled into the DoD's schools.

WV: Hardworking Scots-Irish stock that's working in the mines since 8th grade.

Of course I doubt liberals will understand the difference between these two states and D'shitvarious with an IQ of 70.

Anonymous said...

"Texas is pretty bad, but it's not as bad as California, and beggars can't be choosers, so somebody ought to be investigating why Texas beats California."


Perhaps the answer is easy. Texas doesn't have a real equivalent to California's central valley ag region. The Rio Grande ag region comes close, but it has the border, is not as isolated, and is not as large as the central valley in a number of ways.


http://www.mercurynews.com/ci_21596949/central-valley-areas-among-poorest

"Census shows Central Valley areas among poorest in nation"

"In California, one in six residents lived in poverty. ...

"We have an issue of skills mismatch,"..."



Made the Economist, do we get a prize?


http://www.economist.com/node/15331478

"California's Central Valley: The Appalachia of the West"

"California’s agricultural heartland threatens to become a wasteland"

"A big problem is that the workforce in the Central Valley is badly educated..."

"These demographic trends, combined with the water shortage, are causing worry."

Gerundive Nation said...

I took a shellacking here a few months ago for claiming a gerund wasn't a verb, but a noun; I imagine it was from one of your many Massachusetts readers.

What? Of course a gerund is a noun (a noun derived from a verb).

Kibernetika said...

Switching cerebral hemispheres and national v. international contexts, check out some of the patterns in international programming competitions.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/ACM_International_Collegiate_Programming_Contest

And the meek BRICS shall inherit the engineered earth? :)

The Top 500 (big-iron supercomp/HPC stuff, top500.org) historical rankings by country are also interesting. A proxy for spending or national investment in research -- or just show in some cases.

Can we embrace reality, ditch PC and relearn how to learn?


Anonymous said...

Steve,

I have a question relating to SAT and SES. I was looking at the PDF files that goe with each year's SAT results, but I could not find any information that would allow one to analyse income and race simultaneously.

Where do you get the data for that?

Anonyia said...

Alabama managed to avoid the bottom 5- that is good news for once. I find it interesting that Alabama 4th graders score much better on both measures than the 8th graders. Maybe that is a sign of jock/redneck culture kicking in?

Anonymous said...

Whoa, powerlineblog mentions HBD in relation to crime! HBD: going mainstream.

http://www.powerlineblog.com/archives/2012/12/the-times-embarrasses-itself-on-guns-again.php

'But there is one factor that distinguishes the U.S. from most, if not all, of the other wealthy countries, and that accounts more than anything else for our higher murder rate: we have a far larger minority population.

The Times refers to homicides in other “wealthy” countries, but fails to mention that there are many nations whose murder rates dwarf ours. In most of Africa, homicide rates are sky-high, as much as five to ten times America’s rate. The homicide rate in Brazil is around five times that of the U.S. And here in the United States, according to the Department of Justice, the murder rate among African-Americans is almost eight times the murder rate among whites. This is the main factor that explains why our homicide rate is higher than that in other wealthy countries that have lots of guns, like Switzerland.'

C said...

I compared the 8th grade reading comprehension scores versus racial/ethnic composition for all 50 states. Percent white(non-Hispanic) was the best predictor (and positively correlated), and percent black was the second best (and negatively correlated). A shocking finding. I'll do the other scores if I have time.

(race/ethnicity data from here).

Anonymous said...

But did 'the leadership bet the country on Hispanics'?

Perhaps it was more of a case of cowardice, timidity, lack of backbone and toughness and misplaced 'compassion' allowing an impossible and undesirable sitaution to run away with a life of its own, rather than any conscious decision to hand the country over.
The moral is that lack of resolve and backbone and the continual fudging of hard but necessary decisions is always but always fatal.

Foreign Expert said...

What's more amazing about the Massachusetts scores is that they are for PUBLIC schools. By 8th grade a significant portion of the smart kids in Massachusetts are in private schools (catholic or boarding).

Davis said...

"The score for whites in the top ten percent reflects that Jews are the smartest race and are dragging up the score for the average white."

What percent of the white cohort is Jewish? Maybe 2-3% at most. Your theory is silly and may I ask are you Korean or Chinese?

Anonymous said...

The score for Asians in the top 75% reflects that Asians are smarter than the average white, outscoring white people despite a language disadvantage amongst Asians and the advantage white people have with Jews skewing their results higher.

Then the policy implications are clear. We merely have to replace the current population with jews & asians. Then 'we' will be better off.

Anonymous said...

Kylie said...
"LOL...It's amusing to see all these usage errors and typos in comments on a post about vocabulary skills.

I'm sympathetic to HBD, but why not take a deep breath, slow down and proofread your comments before submitting?"

Do you want to be amused by our mistakes or don't you?

"Believe me, we are not on the edge of our seats waiting for your bon mots to hit the Internet."

Believe me, we are not on the edge of our seats waiting for your approval.
=======================

Oooh, big talk. And not a single counterargument.

One of the funniest things about HBD comments is the appalling grammar, spelling etc., usually from commenters spitting nails at how stoooopid other people are.

I'm all for race realism, and honest discussions about intelligence. However, this mindset deserves better representation than bitter trolls who clearly have IQs below 100 (and that's being generous - I'd put a lot of them below 90) and who want to talk - inarticulately - about how intelligent they are, and how everyone else is so stupid...

(And before any one asks: no, I don't think I have a high IQ. I do, however, have a reasonable ability to spell, and a healthy disdain for the bitter Omegas who tend to comment here.)

Anonymous said...

"In black homes, nobody every talks, watches TV, or listens to rap music."

Fix it!

Anonymous said...

It is pretty funny though how low California is. The "diversity" alone doesn't it explain it.

Anonymous said...

As a very funny nun I had for English class in my Massachusetts parochial school used to say, "-ing words ain't verbs".

I think some readers have trouble parsing majority-white states where white people make their way with a strong back (AL, WV) when compared to places where they earn their ducats thinking about stuff (MA). Black lung versus carpal tunnel...

Rhode Island is a special case. Think of Rhode Island as the remedial class for those New Englanders flunking out of Massachusetts and Connecticut.

Cail Corishev said...

"LOL...It's amusing to see all these usage errors and typos in comments on a post about vocabulary skills."

Cail's Law: When you post a comment criticizing someone else's grammar or spelling, you are almost guaranteed to make a grammar or spelling mistake of your own. (I assume I've made one in this comment, even though I've proofread it several times.)

Big Bill said...

The article in the Mercury cited above was fascinating. The Central Valley is poor, they say, but the farmers are rich. It is filled with collapsing towns like Modesto and Fresno filled with poor, dumb Mexican peasants. They are so poor and dumb they cannot take care of themselves and actually repel potential employers who see them as too dumb to employ and effectively untrainable. So the question asked of a Mexican Professor and a white girl race advocate was "what to do"?

The white girl says they need to invest massive amounts of money making the new California/MexicanPeasantry into intelligent, creative, hardworking Germanic/WASP types.

But if they do that, they will turn Mexicans into "lazy Americans" who will refuse to work for scut wages and will move away.

At which point the farmers will replace the 20 million or so now-lazy (or retired on welfare and disability) Mexican peasants with a NEW BATCH of 20 million Mexican peasants!

And the lefties will start crying out again that "they are just taking jobs Americans won't do" and how "they just want a better life for themselves and their families".

Then they start up again with the "send the brown kids to college" stuff and the whole process repeats itself.

If California desperately needs a poverty-stricken brown underclass and that is why we cannot send them back home when we catch them, then why cry crocodile tears over their poverty? And, for heaven's sake, why waste money converting their kids into Anglos if we are just going to import another 20 million peasants to replace them?

Makes absolutely no sense. Collective insanity.

Lurker said...

this mindset deserves better representation than bitter trolls who clearly have IQs below 100 (and that's being generous - I'd put a lot of them below 90

Nonsense. People with IQs below 90 are not going to be commenting here. If you want to get a feel for what sub-90 commenting looks like go to Youtube.

Jack said...

It is fascinating that California is always so low on these exams. It certainly has a substantial upper middle class that goes to elite colleges, white and Asian, even colleges in the Northeast. Maybe the dumb in Cali are the dumbest dumb in America?

For having the smartest population, Massachusetts certainly has its share of white morons, even violent ones, as Steve has pointed out.

not a hacker said...

Here's proof that Texas classifies most hispanics as "white":


http://www.txdps.state.tx.us/Texas10MostWanted/fugitives.aspx

Anonymous said...

"At which point the farmers will replace the 20 million or so now-lazy (or retired on welfare and disability) Mexican peasants with a NEW BATCH of 20 million Mexican peasants! " - They'll have to be african or asian serfs, mexico doesn't have the demographics to send here anymore.

Anonymous said...

"The government bet the country on Hispanics"..

Well look at Mexico or most other Latin American countries. There's your answer right there. Not a very good augury.

As to W.V. I suspect there is a big 'brain drain' there as educated and ambitious young people move out. I have an aunt with four grown children from there. Three of them attended college and all live in different states now. The fourth who still lives there left school in grade eleven.

Man Mountain Molehill said...

Thought experiment:

How would actual Spaniards compare to the Spanish-speaking mestizos we're saddled with on a Spanish language test?

My guess is the undocumented immigrants yearning for the American dream will score lot lower.


JSM said...

Anonymous said: "It's amusing to see all these usage errors..."

and "...slow down and proofread..."

and then:

"And before any one asks: no, I don't think I have a high IQ. I do, however, have a reasonable ability to spell, and a healthy disdain for the bitter Omegas who tend to comment here."

There is no need for the comma between "spell" and "and."
It's a friggin' commatastrophe.

If you're going to be a Grammar Nanny, at least be a good one.

Signed,
Bitter Omega

Anonymous said...

It is fascinating that California is always so low on these exams. It certainly has a substantial upper middle class that goes to elite colleges, white and Asian, even colleges in the Northeast. Maybe the dumb in Cali are the dumbest dumb in America?



There are just so many dumb ones. California probably almost has a bi modal distribution on these tests with a peak at 1 and -1 standard deviation.

Anonymous said...

I'd like to add to the difference between Texas and California being primarily California's Central Valley. Much of Texas is surprisingly bad farmland. Lots of limestone. The ecology never supported anything larger than deer before modern ranching started. From most of the state the water runs down to the Gulf, fast. (I think the watershed as a whole is the largest in the US, surprisingly with the steepest average gradient, which is one reason for those bad floods.)

Farmers plant lots of sorghum and Johnson grass, or at least they used to... Texas was settled earlier than California. Many of the little ag towns were originally German, Czech, Wendish, Alsatian, or old Scots-Irish hardscrable, etc., and often still mostly are. Ag has always been hard in Texas. ("Hotter than a Texas drought.")

Conversly, California's Central Valley used to be an inland sea. I think it may have only drained to the sea through what is now the Monterey Bay, then later through what is now the San Francisco Bay. Then it apparently just sat there until the Euro-bad-guys showed up. The result is that, if you add water, it is now the best farm land in the world, most collected nutrients untapped, etc., particularly the area where it used to drain into Monterey Bay. (The fabled ag land that Steinbeck wrote about, Steinbeck country.)

Maybe some of my details are wrong, but I think the overall picture stands.

California's Central Valley developed very differently than Texas rural areas. These days a lot of it seems to be farmed by the large agri-businesses, who pretty much can't see any reality beyond their spreadsheets. Even the successful family operations seem to be agri-businesses.

Anonymous said...

"LOL...It's amusing to see all these usage errors and typos in comments on a post about vocabulary skills."

I think it was Hemingway who was told by someone that Steinbeck never had to rewrite his work, copy-edit, or massage his grammar. To which Hemingway replied, "Steinbeck lies!!"

Anonymous said...

Short, manly sentences make mistakes easier to spot.

Anonymous said...

Another difference between Texas and California. The two states have historically had different relationships to Mexico. I'm no expert, but here's my impression.

For much of its history California was largely isolated from Mexico by the Sonoran desert. This goes back a long way. The last hold-out of the Commanche and Apache was the Gadsen Purchase, the chunk of southwestern territory that was not effectively controlled by either the US or Mexico. So you couldn't just walk from non-Baja Mexico to California.

Most of the Mexican immigrants to California are refugees from the brutal Mexican Revolution of 1910-1920, which didn't really completely end until around 1930. Most of these refugees likely came after 1920. (Probably a quarter-million died in combat and 1-2 million total in the Revolution.)

Texas, of course has a long history intertwined with Mexico, much of it violent. It's always been easy to walk from Mexico to Texas. San Antonio and El Paso are both big US Army bases, originally responsible for keeping Mexico in check.

During the Mexican Revolution, Texas got dragged into the troubles (as with the Pancho Villa raid in New Mexico). The Texas war is now apparently called the Bandit Wars:

"In January 1915 rebels known as Seditionistas drafted the Plan of San Diego and began launching their own raids. The plan called for a race war, to rid the American border states of their Anglo American population, and the annexation of the border states to Mexico. However, the Seditionistas were never able to launch a full-scale invasion of the United States so they resorted to conducting small raids into Texas. Much of the fighting involved the Texas Ranger Division though the United States Army also engaged in operations against the rebels."


The war lasted most of the Revolution and was apparently quite brutal. It included raids by Seditionistas of company size. The Texas Rangers seem to have been pretty ruthless conducting counter-insurgency.

The Plan of San Diego was likely unrealistic (and probably was intended primarily to incite larger war), but it was a real document calling for a race war to kill all Anglo men in the border states. It was not renounced by Mexico, but used by some in Mexico for political leverage.

"About 30 raids into the U.S. took place in 1915-16, killing 21 Americans. Skirmishes between the Texas Rangers and Mexican raiders became common... Newspapers in Mexico celebrated the uprising..."

All of this made for a different tone in race relations in Texas than in California in the 1920s.

You don't hear much about this, though it seems to serve as backdrop for many movies.