August 9, 2013

Richwine: "Why can't we talk about IQ?"

Jason Richwine has finally found an outlet willing to publish his response to the tidal wave of ignorance that cost him his job. From Politico:
“IQ is a metric of such dubiousness that almost no serious educational researcher uses it anymore,” the Guardian’s Ana Marie Cox wrote back in May. It was a breathtakingly ignorant statement. Psychologist Jelte Wicherts noted in response that a search for “IQ test” in Google’s academic database yielded more than 10,000 hits — just for the year 2013.

Read the whole thing there.

34 comments:

Eric said...

"[N]o serious educational researcher" uses it because otherwise they'd have to explain the results, which is impossible to do while maintaining all races are equally intelligent.

Jehu said...

We can't talk about IQ because to admit racial differences in IQ totally demolishes the standard Cathedral narrative about evil white men keeping the black man down. If we admit to racial, and for that matter, sex differences, their entire moral position dissolves. Thus heretics MUST be silenced. I wish the real Church had an immune system HALF that aggressive.

Thin-Skinned Masta-Beta said...

If IQ is so important, why use race as a proxy?

It's easy enough to test IQ...
Indeed it's easier to determine somebody's IQ in just a few painless minutes than to ascertain the indeterminate races of people like Mr. Sailer's Conquistador-Americans.

Certainly intelligence is important, but having known enough high IQ wastrels, it's obvious that just this one strength is not enough to determine success and contribution to our communities. Persistence, patience, discipline and agreeability are also essential to the constellation for social success. Indeed examine the holders of our highest positions; the level of erudition and intellectual firepower are hardly guarantee for effective execution.

Anonymous said...

But no professional educator should be taken seriously. Here in Brazil has such a Paulo Freire, is a bag of crap that has no end.
For most teachers Lamarck won.
I think they think that school is as a center for witchcraft.

Thin-Skinned Masta-Beta said...

I've known plenty of clever decent brown people - whose IQs might actually outshine mine. In many capacities I'd rather the company of the decent and down-to-earth rather than so many insufferable smart-asses.

Indeed go to places like San Francisco. The only people who aren't insufferable pretentious hipster fools are the folks fresh of the plane from far away. With normal traditional values, these new Americans are perhaps the only hope for the places where that species of highly credentialed liberal artists dominate who themselves would be incapable of maintaining any kind of civilization on their own.

Perhaps we don't need a wall at the border after all. A velvet rope and a strict bouncer would do quite well. Somebody who would kick the troublemakers out (even the insufferable bobos!)

Anonymous said...

Interesting piece, but he didn't mention the cowardice and the cravenness of Heritage Foundation and of all the mainstream conservatives who either stabbed him in the back or didn't come to his defense.


When it comes to CQ--courage quotient--, conservatives totally suck.

Anonymous said...

Zimbabwe to open a 'blacks only' stock exchange

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/africaandindianocean/zimbabwe/10226393/Zimbabwe-to-open-a-blacks-only-stock-exchange.html

There, that proves your theory wrong...

Or will it?

Udolpho.com said...

Richwine is confused. He thinks that the emotional reaction to IQ data can be fixed with more rational argument. He thinks this even after noting a pattern of emotional reactions followed by no resolution in the past. What's the line about mental illness? Doing the same thing and expecting different results?

I've seen the reactions to Richwine's article. They were completely predictable.

Kibernetika said...

A certain WaPo Wonkista (gender check on aisle three?), D. Matthews, summed up a popular "cognitive elite" opposition to Richwine: "What outraged people was not the mention of the score deficit, but his belief that it is biologically caused and irreversible." There you go ;)

Hell, I've often expressed the wish that I'd been born with a bigger d*ck. Of course, as a progressive thinker, I understand that this deficit is due to historical hindrances suffered by my forebears.

Anonymous said...

Reading through the comments, it became very clear to me why we can't have a reasonable discussion about IQ. It's because the same mass audience you're trying to reach about the science of mental ability is subject to the same IQ constraints that you expound upon.

Ex 1: The guy calling all peoples besides "Oriental Mongoloids" and whites subhuman. Not gonna help the discussion.

Ex 2: The most popular comment is a guy who writes, "Because when empirical data shows something that does not advance the tropes of the left, then we must discard it all together.

The only reason we need to all genuflect at the altar of climate change is so they can further enact laws to control our lives."


Yes, the science of climate change is false 'cause da libruhls are behind it while the science of racial differences are real.

The correct answer is, of course, that both are more than enough substantiated by an over-abundance of evidence, and that both have serious implications about our future as a society. But the vast majority of people are too stupid to see that, and involve themselves in political tribalism.

Signed,
A level-head, multi-racial human

Maxwell Power said...

he first thing for reporters, commentators, and non-experts to do is to stop demonizing public discussion of IQ differences. Stop calling names. Stop trying to get people fired. Most of all, stop making pronouncements about research without first reading the literature or consulting people who have.

Good, but he misunderstands the incentive system for journalists/chatterboxes or just spear-carriers on the make like Bezos Post's Jennifer Rubin. It is survival of the shrillest

Anonymous said...

Wow. He didn't apologize. Just wow. What a dude.

btw - there is no hole in hell hot enough for Will Wilkinson. What an evil, climbing, s.o.b. he's turned out to be.

Ms. Cox & Ms. Rubin? Just dancing their various tribal dances. Whatever. But I once hoped for better from Wilkinson.

Vinteuil

A Working Class American said...

richwine asked "Why can’t we talk about IQ?"

---------------

Strange that he never even attempted to answer the question, or even attempted to delve into possible reasons for why we cannot talk about IQ.

But then again, keeping it superficial seems to be the modus operandi, the MO, for both the liberals and conservatives, at least when it comes to certain 'touchy' subjects.

"Why" is a great question, but no
one really seems to be interested in even attempting to answer that
question.

I will try to answer the question. You cannot talk about IQ and race because it goes against the unwritten rules of professional white-collar professional culture in america.

Why is it that these unwritten rules exist in the first place?

Because whites and blacks were jammed together by the elite when they created the so-called civil rights movement. Racial integration, forced busing, etc. This was crammed down the throats of the unwilling white majority by federal judges, judges who graduated from elite schools and never really had a real job in their lives. These judges were indoctrinated, propagandized by the educational system, the elite part of the educational system, from youth. Why on earth would they care about the desires of the majority?


But we don't talk about the fact that the civil rights movement was an undemocratic "coup" of Capital against Labor. Unwritten rules of professional culture forbid discussion of these topics.

This is called a 'cultural taboo.' Or perhaps societal taboo or tribal taboo might be the more appropriate phrase here.


It is taboo to talk about race and IQ because....well, not because the white majority does not want to talk about it, but because those at the top do not want to talk about.

In human tribes taboos are handed down from on high. This is a species oriented around status hierarchies.

It is taboo to talk about how the civil rights movement was a anti-democratic coup of Capital against Labor not because the white majority does not want to talk about it, but because those at the top do not want to talk about.

Both liberal and conservative political tribes have their own particular taboos.

But we can talk only about the taboos of the liberal political tribe here, right?



Anonymous said...

"This was crammed down the throats of the unwilling white majority by federal judges..."

Yes. At some point in history the villains in movies set in today's period are going to be members of the US judicial system, in this respect, the same way evil, corrupt churchmen are often villains in movies set in the middle ages. People will wonder how they got away with it for so long.

Prof. Woland said...

Jason Richwine is now reprobate. Like a few other brave souls including you Mr. Sailer, he has crossed a line and he can never come back. He can forget about whatever dreams he had about academia, Think Tanks, government jobs, or a corporate job. My advice to him for what it is worth would be to not waiver. If he repudiates what he believes it will destroy his only opportunity for redemption. He is right. As they say, if you live long enough you will see everything. Someday he will be vindicated, hopefully while he is still alive.

Anonymous said...

i don't need to read richwine's thesis to know that those who were colonized by the spaniards have an inferior culture to those that were former british colonies.

NOTA said...

There are two things going on here:

a. Whatever narrative is initially established by the media on any story tends to have vast inertia. I am not sure why, but this is a consistent pattern--the first few big reports on some story set the basic narrative up, and then that narrative can stand despite endless contradictory facts. The initial narrative is determined and maintained partly by the beliefs of the MSM community, but a huge amount is just determined by the first mover. I don't know if the widespread MSM/village/cathedral consensus on IQ was inevitable, but now that it's established, mere contradictory facts have little impact on it.

b. Most of the people we expect, in our society, to do high-quality, deep thinking about important stuff know that there are ideological lines they dare not cross, lest their careers be wrecked. Richwine is complaining that one of these lines--regarding IQ--is silly and forces lots of smart people not to discuss important things in intelligent ways. But the problem is a lot deeper than that. Had Richwine been on record as saying that the Jews should give Israel back to the Palestinians, or that gay men were much more likely than straight men to be pedophiles, he would similarly have been hounded from his job. The problem is, when the thinkers know that they can keep their jobs and continue paying off their mortgages only so long as they stay on the acceptable side of lots of ideological lines, they are crippled in their job of thinking deeply about serious things. They must never let a thought pass their lips that is socially unacceptable.

Learning new things about the world constantly involves discovering stuff that makes you uncomfortable. Age-related mental decline, the big picture of global warming and CO2 emissions, the nature of how HIV spreads, the way big banks manipulate governments and legal systems, the link between smoking and all kinds of nasty diseases, heritability of political leanings and religiosity--all those are things that must make a lot of people uncomfortable, must even deeply offend some people. When we demand that nobody show us new information that offends too many people, or establish the principle that thinkers whose latest conclusions offend the mob will be silenced and punished, we make ourselves a lot stupider.

Melendwyr said...

" Persistence, patience, discipline and agreeability are also essential to the constellation for social success."

Ah, 'agreeability'. Otherwise known as "going along with what people want to hear".

Richwine is clearly deficient in this trait, as he defended the obvious truths instead of caving and apologizing for his thoughtcrimes.

When the people with decency, integrity, and intelligence would all be ruled out by your standard... maybe there's something wrong with your standard.

Mr. Anon said...

"“IQ is a metric of such dubiousness that almost no serious educational researcher uses it anymore,” the Guardian’s Ana Marie Cox wrote back in May""

This statement is either the result of ignorance or disingenuousness. In any event, it is obviously quite wrong. EVERY academic in virtually every discipline who has ever sat on a graduate admissions committee, or a graduate thesis/dissertation committee has used IQ test results. They are called GREs.

JeremiahJohnbalaya said...

Yes, the science of climate change is false 'cause da libruhls are behind it while the science of racial differences are real.

The difference is that the hypothesis, testing and verification of IQ happens in a truly scientific, controlled, experimental fashion. Much less true of climate "science" which uses many post hoc and just-so-story explanations.

A Working Class American said...

quoting me, Anonymous said...

"This was crammed down the throats of the unwilling white majority by federal judges..."

Yes. At some point in history the villains in movies set in today's period are going to be members of the US judicial system, in this respect, the same way evil, corrupt churchmen are often villains in movies set in the middle ages. People will wonder how they got away with it for so long.
===============
my reply:

The problem goes deeper than just the unelected federal judges, steeped from their malleable youth in elite edu-propaganda dogma and living shielded from reality in an ivory tower. The problem really lies in the structure of the american government. The size of the electoral districts, the separation of powers and strong checks and balances, in combination with highly propagnadized, disconnected from reality, unelected federal judges, all these in combination are the enslaver of the majority, which happens to be white in america. At least for now.


But it is a de facto taboo among pseudo-educated americans to speak of these things. They will either ignore you (and think to themselves "this guy is a kook!) or they will regurgitate the dogma which they were indoctrinated during youth: "democracy is sheep voting to eat the wolves," or "checks and balances are meant to keep us from the tyranny of the majority!" or some similar elite nonsense propaganda phrases.

Americans are indoctrinated during their malleable youth to think of themselves as the elite and to think of the majority as some ravenous, covetous "gimme dat" mob just itching to take their wealth from them. Americans cannot see themselves as the majority. They are all "above average."

Anonymous said...

Persistence, patience, discipline and agreeability are also essential to the constellation for social success.

Unfortunately these are qualities that are also often lacking in people with below average IQ. They seem go hand and hand. See Rachel Jeantel

Anonymous said...

"Why can't we talk about IQ?

Because, barring a race-war of extermination, we will be living and working side-by-side people from all races.

A long battle to hash out the natural racial inferiority of whites in the face of Asian and Jewish superiority is unlikely to make whites more willing to accept reality, and simply likely to make them more surly and more dangerous.

David said...

>The difference is that the hypothesis, testing and verification of IQ happens in a truly scientific, controlled, experimental fashion. Much less true of climate "science" which uses many post hoc and just-so-story explanations.<

Hey, wait a minute.... LMAO

Actually both are scientific but wow, politics plagues both like nobody's beeswax.

john marzan said...

ana marie cox now writes tv reviews for bill simmon's grantland

Anonymous said...

http://fb-troublemakers.com/10-of-the-most-inappropriate-kids-toys-ever-13973/

Anonymous said...

"Why can't we talk about IQ?

Because, barring a race-war of extermination, we will be living and working side-by-side people from all races."


In the future, we will all be people of the lie. That'll work! In the end another name for people of the lie is evil people. Who knew there was so much evil lurking in our future? Oh, and where there is such evil, there will be wars, count on it. If nothing else, over what to lie about.

Crawfurdmuir said...

"Why can't we talk about IQ?

Doing so attacks the foundation of the modern egalitarian redistributionist state, which is that socioeconomic inequality is the result of an unjust social and political order, and that it can be remedied by Procrustean measures. The poor, in this conception, are poor because they lack money and credit - so the solution to their problems is to give them these things, taken by force, if necessary, from those who have them. Blacks and mestizos, in this conception, owe all of their social and economic reversals to discrimination by whites - so there must be "affirmative action."

Not only individual careers, but entire departments of government, academia, and the non-profit sector owe their existence to these ideas. Recognition of the role of IQ in bringing about inequality, and above all recognition that IQ is substantially an immutable characteristic determined by genetics, constitute existential threats to the power, status, and wealth of large numbers of politicians, bureaucrats, academics, and other functionaries that are dependent on the perpetuation of egalitarian myths.

The policy implications of acknowledging the significance of IQ, and its largely genetic determination, are that policies designed to uplift the chronically poor, with that class's disproportionately large component of blacks and mestizos, are exercises in futility.

We have had fifty years of LBJ's "Great Society," with its efforts to educate the ineducable, and to find employment for the unemployable. As some wag observed long ago, we fought a "War on Poverty," and poverty won. The total cost of Great Society programs since their inception has been estimated by Pat Buchanan at $17 trillion, a figure not coincidentally about the same as the current national debt. Empirically, the welfare state has been a failure - and IQ differences are a good part of the reason for it.

The stridency of those on the losing side of an argument becomes greater, the more evident it becomes that they are losing it. It should not surprise us that people like Richwine are persecuted by the dominant elite - it shows how conscious that elite is of the precariousness of its position.

contro said...

Liberals like with anything else love to pick and chose what scientific evidence are to be promoted and which ones are to be tamed and silenced by their usual methodology of killing and demonizing the messenger, instead of offering a counter factual theory or evidence to debunk it. So they love to call conservatives anti science, but when the science goes against their bias and agenda then science no more.
Just like with this iq thing, which is more than proven throuout history (were Europeans that enslaved African , not the other way around) same goes to abortion. I'm a prochoice, but that doesn't blind me for the simple science, that once a male and a female cell mate, a new human live is born. It may not be a "baby", May be just a cell, but a living thing it is and of human, not canine, not feline, nature is. but god forbid this simple and basic scientific true is told to a liberal. No point.

Anonymous said...

Why can't we talk about IQ?

Steve knew all along ("Live not by lies"):

"Smart Enough to Know Better: Intelligence Is Not a Remedy for Racism", ScienceDaily, 13-Aug-2013.

"Smart people are just as racist as their less intelligent peers -- they're just better at concealing their prejudice, according to a University of Michigan study. ...

... High-ability whites were more likely... to reject residential segregation and to support school integration in principle,... But there were only trivial differences across cognitive ability levels in support for policies designed to realize racial equality in practice.

In some cases, more intelligent whites were actually less likely to support remedial policies for racial inequality.

"The principle-policy paradox is much more pronounced among high-ability whites than among low-ability whites...""


Steve's pointed out for a long time that you have to watch what they do (and where they buy real estate), not what they say.

So maybe one reason you can't talk about IQ is that a lot of people who matter feel uncomfortable if they suspect they are in danger of getting publicly trapped supporting what they know to be a lie. It's not a lie of nobody points it out, right?

Anonymous said...

Richwine is confused. He thinks that the emotional reaction to IQ data can be fixed with more rational argument. He thinks this even after noting a pattern of emotional reactions followed by no resolution in the past. What's the line about mental illness? Doing the same thing and expecting different results?

I've seen the reactions to Richwine's article. They were completely predictable.

----

I do see value in it, despite predictable shrill reactions. It's like these debates between atheists and Christian fundamentalists. Of course neither is going to convert the other...that's not the point. Most audience members will not be shifted either, but there are some who are on the fence, who can be persuaded. Most will not listen to Richwine, but the argument needs at least to be out there.

Anonymous said...

Ah, 'agreeability'. Otherwise known as "going along with what people want to hear".
---
I think 'agreeability' here means something different. It would mean cutting your grass so as not to tick off your neighbors, not talking on the phone in line at the bank like a douchebag, and not cutting people off in traffic.

NOTA said...

The full message of The Bell Curve (IQ differs between people based on genes and early childhood environment, and probably little can be done about it) undermines several dominant activist political narratives. The broader lessons of hbd and of the long-running impact of history and culture on people undermines others. And my guess is that this makes acceptance of either one much, much harder for people who need the favor of the powerful to get ahead.

a. The modernversion of the welfare state assumes the possibility of improving people--headstart, preschools, job training, affirmative action. This is sort-of summarized by the "a hand up, not a hand out" or "teach a man to fish" sort of slogans. To the extent people at the bottom are just going to stay at the bottom (as will most, but not all, of their kids) that whole program is all wrong. This rhetoric comes mostly from the left, but the policies are bipartisan--think NCLB.

b. The argument for keeping a winner-take-all kind of economy (low taxes, especially low capital gains taxes, light regulation, light antitrust enforcement, acceptance of large-scale inequality) is based on the notion that people were successful mainly because of their good choices and hard work. Think "I built that" or "the 47%" as slogans here. But to the extent that most of that success comes down to the genetic and environmental gifts given to you by your parents, it's a lot harder to justify. If Alice has ten times what Bob makes because of an accident of birth, I can't see why that's any more acceptable when Alice's advantage is in her genes and upbringing than when it's in her title of nobility and old-boy-network connections. This rhetoric mostly comes from the right, but again, you won't see Democrats Geithner or Summers or Lew pushing back against the winner take all economy. The people at the top are the winners--what's not to like?

c. The foreign policy rhetoric that makes distant foreign countries out to be basically made of the same stuff as the US, and so relatively easy to fix. We can make them democratic, industrialized, liberal, free, secular societies, it's just a matter of having the will to do it. Again, this is bipartisan policy at the top. (Think of the rhetoric from the Bush and Obama administrations regarding popular uprisings, democracy, etc. in the middle east, or the earlier rhetoric and actions w.r.t. trying to liberalize the ex-Soviet Union's economy and society.). HBD undermines this, as does any kind of understanding of the depth of culture and history and religion that pervades every society.

d. The argument for mass immigration that assumes that all immigrants are more or less the same, and are relatively easy to press out into new Americans just like the old ones. Again, hbd and culture argue that this isn't so simple, that sometimes it will be harder than you expect, sometimes it will be all but impossible, and there will be unforseen complexities in the whole program. And again, this contradicts bipartisan consensus policy and ideology at the top.

Now, the thing to understand here is that the powerful in the two parties are broadly on board with all of these programs, and are often deeply invested in them. So ideas that call those programs and ideas into question are almost certain to get a cold reception from the folks at the top, and likewise from their courtiers and followers in the MSM.

Anonymous said...

"The principle-policy paradox..."

Principle for me, policy for thee.

It's really hard to be a saint, surrounded by so many sinners, don't you agree?