December 23, 2013

Ridley: "Heritable IQ is a sign of social mobility"

Science journalist Matt Ridley (a.k.a. Matthew White Ridley VIII, the Fifth Viscount Ridley) blogs:
Heritable IQ is a sign of social mobility 
Paradoxical features of the genetics of intelligence 
... The recent burst of interest in IQ, sparked first by Dominic Cummings (Michael Gove’s adviser), and then by Boris [Johnson], has been encouraging in one sense. As Robert Plomin, probably the world’s leading expert on the genetics of intelligence, put it to me, there used to be a kneejerk reaction along the lines of “you can’t measure intelligence”, or “it couldn’t possibly be genetic”. This time the tone is more like: “Of course, there is some genetic influence on intelligence but . . .” 
The evidence from twin studies, adoption studies and even from DNA evidence is relentlessly consistent: in children, in Western society, the heritability of IQ scores is about 50 per cent. The other half comes equally from family (shared environment) and from unshared individual experiences: luck, teachers, friends. 
This numerical precision easily misleads us into thinking genes and environment struggle against each other. In fact, they are like two pillars supporting an arch: nature makes you seek out nurture, which brings out your nature. But here is where things get interesting. The acceptance of genetic influence on intelligence leads to some surprising, even paradoxical implications, some of which turn the assumptions of both the Right and the Left upside down. 
First, if intelligence was not substantially genetic, there would be no point in widening access to universities, or in grammar schools and bursaries at private schools trying to seek out those from modest backgrounds who have more to offer. If nurture were everything, kids unlucky enough to have been to poor schools would have irredeemably poor minds, which is nonsense. The bitter irony of the nature-nurture wars of the 20th century was that a world where nurture was everything would be horribly more cruel than one where nature allowed people to escape their disadvantages. 
The Left, which has championed nurture against nature, is learning to take a different view — over homosexuality, for example, or learning disability, genetic influence is used as an argument for tolerance. A recent Guardian headline criticised Boris by saying “gifted children are failed by the system”, which presupposes the existence of (genetically) gifted children. 
The second surprise is that genetic influence increases with age. If you measure the correlation between the IQs of identical twins and compare it with that of adopted siblings, you find the difference grows dramatically as they get older. This is chiefly because families shape the environments of young children, whereas older children and adults select and evoke environments that suit their innate preferences, reinforcing nature. 
[See the new paper by Briley, D. A. , & Tucker-Drob, E. M. (in press). Explaining the increasing heritability of cognitive ability over development: A meta-analysis of longitudinal twin and adoption studies. Psychological Science.] 
It follows — the third surprise — that much of what we call the “environment” proves to be itself under genetic influence. Children who are very good at reading are likely to have parents who read a lot, schools that give them special opportunities and friends who recommend books. They create a reading-friendly environment for themselves. The well-documented association between family socio-economic status and IQ, routinely interpreted as an environmental effect, is, writes Professor Plomin and colleagues, “substantially mediated by genetic factors”. Perhaps intelligence is an appetite, at least much as an aptitude, for learning. 
The fourth surprise is that the better the economy, education, and welfare are, the more heritable IQ will be. Just as having extra food will make you brighter if you are starving, but not if you are plump, so the same applies to toys, teachers, books and friends. Once you have enough of any of these things, having more will not make as much difference.

Christmas shopping hint: Children tend to disagree that enough is enough when it comes to toys.
So differences due to environment will fade. In a world when some are starving and some are kings, the differences would be mainly environmental. In a world where all went to Balliol, the main difference remaining would be genetic. Social reformers rarely face this fact — the more we equalise opportunity, the more the people who get to the top will be the genetically talented.

For example, English aristocrats like Ridley used to be dramatically taller on the whole than the national average. Not so much anymore. Now height is more genetic.
And this brings a final paradox: a world with perfect social mobility would show very high heritability. The children of Balliol parents would qualify for Balliol disproportionately, having inherited both aptitude and an appetite for evoking the environments that amplified that aptitude. Far from indicating that parents are giving their children unfair environmental advantages, a high correlation between the achievements of parents and offspring suggests that opportunity is being levelled, albeit slowly and patchily. In Professor Plomin’s words: “Heritability can be viewed as an index of meritocratic social mobility.” 
Moreover, assortative mating is probably reinforcing the trend. That is to say, 50 years ago, when women were not often allowed near higher education, Professor Branestawm chose to marry the girl next door because she was good at ironing his shirts, whereas today he marries another professor because she writes gorgeous equations about quantum mechanics, and they have children who are professors squared. 
We are a long way from equality of opportunity, but when we get there we will not find equality of outcome. Already IQ — for all its flaws as an objective measure of intelligence — is good at predicting not just educational attainment, but income, health and even longevity remarkably well. 
Do we reconcile ourselves to inequality, then? No! Just because capability is inherited does not mean it is immutable. Hair colour and short sight are highly heritable, but both can be altered. Education is not just about coaxing native wit from the gifted, but also coaching it into the less gifted.

The greatest trick the intelligent ever pulled was convincing the world intelligence doesn't exist.

The greatest trick the heritably gifted ever pulled was convincing the world that heritability doesn't exist. 

One hundred years ago, the concept of noblesse oblige stated that those gifted by inheritance, such as the sons of viscounts, had to occasionally pay for their privileges by, say, leading infantry charges across No Man's Land.

We increasingly live in a world where the heritably clever can get away with much in part because they've propounded an ideology in which thinking clearly about the privileges and responsibilities of the clever is obfuscated with happy talk about equality and two minutes hates about how only racists are so unscientific as to notice heritability and inequality in intelligence.

77 comments:

Sulla said...

Where did Ridley come up with that 50% number?

Anonymous said...

We increasingly live in a world where the heritably clever can get away with much in part because they've propounded an ideology in which thinking clearly about the privileges and responsibilities of the clever is obfuscated with happy talk about equality and two minutes hates about how only racists are so unscientific as to notice heritability.

Realising and then acting on this information is an important product of reality-based thinking about HBD.

Gubbler of the Society of Reformed Chechenistics said...

Political Correctness isn't so much about permanent or absolute truths as about whatever happens to be expedient for the time being.

So, I can see the Liberal ideologues changing their positions on biological differences.
Suppose there is a cheap and easy bio-tech means to boost the IQs of people, and suppose doing so will push black IQs up to white levels.

Since there are more low IQ blacks than low IQ whites, more blacks will have to undergo the treatment, which will mean that blacks are indeed, on average, less intelligent than whites. But since blacks will be equal after the treatment, liberals will have no problem in admitting differences in racial IQ.

They'll say OF COURSE THERE ARE DIFFERENCES IN IQ AMONG THE RACES AND THAT'S WHY WE MUST USE THIS GREAT BIO-TECHNOLOGY TO BIO-ENGINEER BLACKS TO BE JUST AS SMART AS WHITES AND MAKE THE WORLD MORE EQUAL.

Since such technology doesn't exist in the present, PC goes on insisting that there are no racial differences in IQ and more needs to be done socially to bring forth greater equality among the races.

Those who control the media and the power can shape 'truth' anyway they want. So, Stalin could say Nazi Germany is eeeeevil, but then say, Nazi Germany is our ally, and then say, we must fight Nazi Germany, and etc. Though he made 180 degree turns on his stance, he's always right since correctness isn't so much a matter of what is said but WHO says it.

Lib elites feel the same way. They are always right even when they switch positions from one extreme to another. They were right as counterculture anarchist hippies, and they are right as control-freak soft totalitarians of us all.

sunbeam said...

"First, if intelligence was not substantially genetic, there would be no point in widening access to universities, or in grammar schools and bursaries at private schools trying to seek out those from modest backgrounds who have more to offer."

When does this ever pay off? Does anyone know of any examples, from the past 20 or 30 years of someone from a disadvantaged background winning the Nobel Prize or Fields Medal? Starting one of those companies that goes into the stratosphere of valuation, from nothing?

"If nurture were everything, kids unlucky enough to have been to poor schools would have irredeemably poor minds, which is nonsense."

I'm in a dark frame of mind. How is this not true? It sure seems to fit the evidence.

Maybe these things worked in the US in the post-war era. Maybe they will work in China or a country with a similar development patter for years to come.

But what evidence do we have that the American system hasn't already separated all the wheat from the chaff?

Anyone care to give their odds on a mind like Feynman's coming out of inner city Chicago or West Virginia?

theiquist said...

The problem is we still don't know what IQ is good at measuring ..some kids with high IQ learn really fast and some adults with high IQ sound really smart online but is that all it's good for?

Simon in London said...

"today he marries another professor because she writes gorgeous equations about quantum mechanics, and they have children..."

Hopefully! Statistically he should have written "have a child..."

Beliavsky said...

Does Ridley believe everything he writes. He concludes the essay as follows:

"Education is not just about coaxing native wit from the gifted, but also coaching it into the less gifted."

No one knows who to coach "native wit" into the "less gifted".

515 54235542 said...

I once read somewhere that 25% of the males who taught at Oxbridge from 1880 to 1930 never married. So their genes were lost, but who am I to judge whether or not a lot of crappy mutations were also lost? "Smart people are squirrely." (G. Cochran.)

FWIW, I think the Robertson family is quite bright, especially Phil and Jase. Phil grew up dirty poor.

Anonymous said...

Funny, Anon, I never notice any HBDers advocating for the clever to practice noblesse oblige. They tend to be even more into using IQ to weasel out of obligation than liberal blank slaters.

NOTA said...

Isn't Teach For America or going off to take up the white man's burden by do-gooding in Africa for a summer the same kind of noblesse oblige? Mostly, the nobility enjoyed being on top, but sometimes they felt obliged to do stuff to serve the whole society (often not terribly useful stuff, like killing natives to hold down the unprofitable colonies or trying to teach a bunch of kids in a school where the adults have given up on maintaining order), either for internal moral reasons or to improve their standing in inter-elite pissing matches.

Ideally, people should feel some responsibilty for something larger than themselves--for their town or church or neighborhood or nation or something. But modern US society seems like it is optimized for corroding any such sense of responsibility. The MSM message is that you ought to be a little embarrassed to display much religion or patriotism (admittedly, most displays of that for media consumption are as real as professional wrestling). Really, any idealism seems like it gets turned into a joke. It's hard to overstate how corrosive and evil our media culture is, despite the occasional gems you can find if you are looking.

Anonymous said...

When black thugs attacked whites at a Chicago beach, the beach was closed down and the city government blamed the closing on the 'hot weather', and the media ran with that narrative even though they knew it to be false.

When Alqaeda attacked the US embassy in Benghazi in a fit of anti-Americanism, the US government blamed the incident on some Koran-burning pastor in Florida, and the media ran with that narrative even though it was far-fetched.

Blame the heat, blame the white Christian male.

Media once used to take pride in exposing government lies like Watergate. Now, the media are in the watergate business themselves and enabling the lies of the government, local and federal. They are colluding with the elites on Wall Street and in government to push lies on the public, not least because the media are mostly owned and run by the same people who run the government and Wall Street. And they are not Eskimos.

Things are far more dangerous now than during the Watergate era. Back then, there was some ethnic competition with Wasps ruling government and Jews ruling media. Today, it's Jews ruling Wall Street, Media, Law firms, academia, government, and etc. And if they say hot weather was the reason for beach closing, then it was the hot weather. And if they say the burning of some Koran led to the disaster in Benghazi, then it was the fault of some wacky pastor.

Given the utter corruption and collusion of the media in the empire of lies, maybe we should let Nixon off the hook.

Anonymous said...

@Gubbler

My guess would be that it'll take BGI (or whoever) a good decade or so before they give us solid answers on genetics and intelligence. It'll probably be much longer before we're able to select embryos for intelligence or find some gene therapy to make people who are already born smarter.

As the evidence on genetics and intelligence continues to trickle in, the left will have to do a 180 on their nature-only view of intelligence.

The consequences of this might not be so bad. Take Head Start (or whatever universal pre-k type program we might end up with), for example. Rather than spending their time trying to close gaps, the left might realize that only so much can be done and focus primarily on fixing the behavior of minorities and white proles. Head Start already attempts to teach kids about things like manners and personal hygiene.

What if things like that became their only focus? Poor people, in general and regardless of race, tend to be rude, stupid, and disgusting. The stupidity probably isn't going away. The other stuff, I'm not so sure.

Anonymous said...

"Political Correctness isn't so much about permanent or absolute truths as about whatever happens to be expedient for the time being. "

Stanley Fish(who fashions himself as a "pragmatist") wrote a(the?) book on political correctness and speech codes... this was recently tweeted out by Nick Land recently...

http://handleshaus.wordpress.com/2013/09/17/boutique-multiculturalism/

"They'll say OF COURSE THERE ARE DIFFERENCES IN IQ AMONG THE RACES AND THAT'S WHY WE MUST USE THIS GREAT BIO-TECHNOLOGY TO BIO-ENGINEER BLACKS TO BE JUST AS SMART AS WHITES AND MAKE THE WORLD MORE EQUAL. "

To left wing pragmatists like Dewey/Rorty/Fish, pointing out differences like these undermines socialization and solidarity which from their perspective means undermining democracy itself... until this information can be used to promote socialization and solidarity it must stigmatized and kept to the margins of democratic conversation.

IMO, the hiding of these truths undermines democracy by allowing the demos to be seen as interchangeable. This results in ideologies from both the left and right which undermine solidarity. It also leads to absurd scapegoating narratives(for instance, white liberal teachers are seen as the oppressors keeping down POC).

pat said...

There is a fundamental problem with imagining that some future genetic insight will allow us to make blacks as smart as whites or East Asians. Let me work up to that.

First let's consider the genetics. 23andMe has a comment forum on intelligence. It revolves around the two SNPs that 23and Me reports as being important to IQ. Those who have the favorable pattern on both SNPs, either crow shamelessly or assume false modesty.

You can get an alternate analysis of the same genetic data which offers 138 SNPs involved with IQ. I don't know how many really are involved, but some experts say thousands. No one set matters much alone. Intelligence is clearly polygenetic.

But that only means it will take a bit longer to figure out. No?

At the macroscopic level it is well established that the relative sizes of the brains among the races is probably the main determinant of racial IQ differences. The big brain races - East Asian and Western Europeans - have the high IQs. The correlation of IQ with total brain size is about 0.4.

The brains of the races also appear to be differently shaped. It may very well be that Asian and white brains have larger pre-frontal lobes. This isn't certain yet but if it is, the correlation between the size of the pre-frontal brain and IQ may be .50 or higher.

The big brain theory is also consistent with the myopia evidence. IQ correlates with myopia at about the same level. It looks like the same set of genes that made some populations grow bigger brains also made them grow bigger eyeballs. Eyes and brains are connected in several ways. Big eyes suffer from myopia because the light rays converge before they reach the cornea.

Ashkenazi Jews seem to be extra smart because of extra rich dendrite branching but they also have myopia like other high IQ peoples.

The simple factor of brain size accounts for a lot of the IQ variance although brain size may be under the control of a great many genes.

I expect these ideas will be better understood in just a few decades. But before then we should also have a better handle on race itself. We have haplotypes, we have SNPedia but we do not have any kind od numbering or labeling system that corresponds well with our common understanding of race. To put it another way - what is formula for a Swede?

I expect that we will have an unambiguous genetic taxonomy of race in just a few years. But the timing is important politically.

If we figure out how to 'fix' the black brain first, there is a good chance that we can eliminate all the social deficiencies of the black population by raising their IQs. But if we can unambiguously identify blacks at the molecular level first, then someone is bound to try to engineer a 'smart' disease that targets only blacks.

Smallpox probably arose in China but it decimated the whole of the Old World. So when it was introduced by accident in the New World it was a disease that almost only targeted Amerindians.

If we could identify race at a molecular level someone will be tempted to create something like a weaponized smallpox strain that only attacks blacks.

So I expect that modern science will help us solve our racial problems - but I don't know just how. In the long run we will know everything, but it matters in what order we acquire knowledge. If we understand race before we understand IQ we may have designer plagues.

Albertosaurus

Anonymous said...

Ridley is the current, not future, 5th Viscount. His father died in 2012.

Dave Pinsen said...

Up to a point, Viscount Ridley.

Dave Pinsen said...

AP reporter Martha Mendoza, Antioch University Los Angeles provost Luis Pedraja, and Alan A. Aja, Latino studies at Brooklyn Colleg, will all be heartened to heartened to know from the viscount that the poor academic performance of Hispanics in America is a sign of our high social mobility.

Anonymous said...

I'd bet that the massive amount of high-quality teaching material available online is increasing the gap. The people most interested in MOOCs are probably the ones who are already well-educated.

Anonymous said...

" such as the sons of viscounts, had to occasionally pay for their privileges by, say, leading infantry charges across No Man's Land. "

I called your bluff and lost, there is at least one Viscount that died in WWI. Shame on me.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Michael_Hicks_Beach,_Viscount_Quenington

An actual British Prince.

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

Sulla said...

"Eyes and brains are connected in several ways. Big eyes suffer from myopia because the light rays converge before they reach the cornea."

No wonder the Chinese can't drive! Also all those Chinese wives need booster seats to see over the dashboard.

Crawfurdmuir said...

"Play the man, Master Ridley; we shall this day light such a candle, by God's grace, in England, as I trust shall never be put out."

- S. Sailer to M. Ridley, 2013?

Anonymous said...

Uh Steve notice how the whole noblese oblige kind of fell apart after one war of charging across no man's land. Think maybe those were related as in that was really stupid let's stop doing whatever it was that made us do that. If charging across No Man's Land is what was required of being an elite its no wonder they changed the rules.

ben tillman said...

For example, English aristocrats like Ridley used to be dramatically taller on the whole than the national average....

Aristocrats like Ridley are still about 6'3".

ben tillman said...

Media once used to take pride in exposing government lies like Watergate.

Baloney. They took pride in exposing government lies only when they did not control the executive branch.

Watergate happened because the revolution of the 1960's produced a counterrevolution that the mass media couldn't fully control.

The Left eventually neutralized Wallace through naked violence, but only after the people had managed to elect a President who was not acceptable to the media meta-rulers. It took them six years to find the strength to remove Nixon from office using a preposterously trivial pretext.

Obama, Bush, Clinton, Bush, LBJ -- maybe even Nixon himself -- were all war criminals and mass murderers, but Nixon was drummed out of office for a burglary!

Luke Lea said...

Love that last graph: We increasingly live in a world where the heritably clever can get away with much in part because they've propounded an ideology in which thinking clearly about the privileges and responsibilities of the clever is obfuscated with happy talk about equality and two minutes hates about how only racists are so unscientific as to notice heritability and inequality in intelligence.

ben tillman said...

The greatest trick the intelligent ever pulled was convincing the world intelligence doesn't exist.

The greatest trick the heritably gifted ever pulled was convincing the world that heritability doesn't exist.


I don't buy it. I've seen people claim things like this, publicly, and advance policies based on these premises. But I've never seen any evidence that anyone actually believes either of these propositions.

Everyone thinks intelligence exists, and everyone thinks it's inherited just like height, looks, etc.

Anonymous said...

"charge across No Man's Land"

this is not a joke. I attended a non-England UK nation's foremost learning institution for what Americans would call high school and there was a plaque for the class of 1915, who almost all died in toto in one specific action at one specific battle in 1916. The average lifespan of a British subaltern (2LT in modern NATO talk) in the western front in WW1 was 6 weeks (!!!).
It was beat (both literally and allegorically) into us that every one of us 6th form lads could be called on to do the same and that it was our highest honour to do so.

Troy McClure said...

This numerical precision easily misleads us into thinking genes and environment struggle against each other. In fact, they are like two pillars supporting an arch: nature makes you seek out nurture, which brings out your nature.

Hi, I'm Troy McClure. You may remember me from such scientific films as "Nurture versus Nature: The Road to Victory" or "Earwigs...Ewww!"

Aaron Gross said...

Robert Plomin said: there used to be a kneejerk reaction along the lines of “you can’t measure intelligence”, or “it couldn’t possibly be genetic”. This time the tone is more like: “Of course, there is some genetic influence on intelligence but . . .”

Steve Sailer wrote: The heredity glass and the environment glass are generally both about half full and half empty.

Only wild-eyed extremists like me think that way, however.

Responsible moderates know that the nurture glass must be 100% full....


I replied: That's insane. Maybe it was true about twenty years ago, but now the consensus is that the heritability of lots of psychological traits is around 50%.

This article is not exceptional. It's representative of the elite position on genetics: most psychological traits, including IQ, are substantially heritable.

The "surprises" of heritability described in this article were being explained in mainstream, popular publications two decades ago. Ridley overstates some of his points, but he gets the basics right.

Anonymous said...

How do you increase heritability? sounds like sophistry

Dan Kurt said...

You "think the Robertson family is quite bright"515 54235542

You think?

The Duck Dynasty crowd is according to Forbes worth hundreds of millions of dollars. That alone makes the case for smarts, no?

Dan Kurt

MC said...

"The children of Balliol parents would qualify for Balliol disproportionately, having inherited both aptitude and an appetite for evoking the environments that amplified that aptitude."

Paging Dr. Bruce Charlton:

http://www.scotsman.com/news/uk/working-classes-are-less-intelligent-says-evolution-expert-1-1169317

Anonymous said...

FWIW, I think the Robertson family is quite bright, especially Phil and Jase. Phil grew up dirty poor.

It's all an act. They're not even real rednecks:

"Duck Dynasty is a Fake Yuppies-in-Red-Neck-Drag Con Job"

http://www.saloforum.com/index.php?threads/duck-dynasty-is-a-fake-yuppies-in-red-neck-drag-con-job.3567/

Anonymous said...

@Dan Kurt

all you have to do is a little googling. robertson family before their redneck beards.

http://tinyurl.com/n3r4s5q

laughing all the way to the bank. stupid 'murica.

Simon in London said...

Anonymous said...
"Uh Steve notice how the whole noblese oblige kind of fell apart after one war of charging across no man's land. Think maybe those were related as in that was really stupid let's stop doing whatever it was that made us do that. If charging across No Man's Land is what was required of being an elite its no wonder they changed the rules."

Charging across no man's land was stupid for everyone. My impression of what's left of the British nobility though is that they haven't changed all that much in still having a sense of noblesse oblige. This sometimes causes them to become socialists (Tony Benn) or to be vulnerable to cultural Marxist dialectic (David Cameron), though. At least they tend not to actively hate the native British/English people the way metropolitan left-liberals (our actual ruling elite) do, though.

Anonymous said...

>"a world where [it were the case that X] would be horribly more cruel than one where [it were the case that Y]"

Which says absolutely nothing about the factuality of either case.

Anonymous said...

>notice how the whole noblese oblige kind of fell apart after one war of charging across no man's land.

No it was later.

Joseph P. Kennedy, Jr.

Teddy Roosevelt, Jr

Quentin Roosevelt II (this one did not die but not for the lack of trying, was present on d-day.)

[George H. W. Bush] postponed college, enlisted in the U.S. Navy on his 18th birthday, and became the youngest aviator in the U.S. Navy at the time.

Then came the Dubya generation.

Also; as military becomes more professional you see less of the above and more of the below:
McCain's father and grandfather were admirals in the United States Navy.

Aaron Gross said...

How do you increase heritability? sounds like sophistry

Nobody wanted to answer this yet, so I will. It follows directly from the definition of heritability. Heritability is the proportion of variation in a trait that's attributed to genes. (That's a concept that, the more you think about it, the less sense it makes, at least for humans. But anyway...) So if you decrease the relevant variation in the environment, you increase the heritability of the trait.

Heritability is just one minus the "environmentability," the variation attributed to the environment. So increasing heritability means exactly the same as decreasing the "environmentability," for instance by making the environments more equal, if that way makes it more intuitive.

Heritability is just a "snapshot" that changes over time and place. Lots of writers (John Derbyshire and Razib Khan, among others) sometimes forget that, even though they ought to know better.

Titus Didius Tacitus said...

Merry Christmas!

dearieme said...

I did guffaw at "50 years ago, when women were not often allowed near higher education". I suspect he meant '50 years ago, when women were not often allowed near Eton and Magdalen'.

48326952 37 said...

@Dan Kurt,

Yes, I think. Calm down. I know all about the Robertsons. They are very very rich.

That said, Phil & sibs did grow up very poor. The truth about Duck Commander is that he took over his father's business and made it huge with videos long pre-dating Duck Dynasty.

I think it's interesting that just this one time the cultural Marxists were rocked back on their heels, but I don't think it will amount to much. Gay rights marches on and will destroy the two parent family in all 50 states, as it already has formally, and legally, in California. Here's links, for those of you who care:

http://tinyurl.com/k7fz4pr

The lack of response to the signing of this bill is evidence that conservatism in the US is well and truly dead. Even Steve paid no attention to it.

JSM said...

"When does this ever pay off? Does anyone know of any examples, from the past 20 or 30 years of someone from a disadvantaged background winning the Nobel Prize or Fields Medal? Starting one of those companies that goes into the stratosphere of valuation, from nothing"

Hi, Sunbeam,
How about Storey Musgrave? Fighter pilot in Korea, astronaut who flew all five shuttles, did the space walk that fixed Hubble, holds I think seven advanced degrees, is a Disney Imagineer -- oh, and trauma surgeon in his spare time. Storey grew up on a dairy farm and never graduated high school. Ran away at 17 to join the Marines. The military, to their credit, recognized his stratospheric IQ and gave him the training he warranted.
How's that for payoff?

http://www.storymusgrave.com/biography_biographies_single_page.htm

Anonymous said...

http://blog.oup.com/2013/12/speaking-of-india-parody-satire-social-commentary-economics/?utm_source=feedblitz&utm_medium=FeedBlitzRss&utm_campaign=oupblog

Anonymous said...

" If we understand race before we understand IQ we may have designer plagues.

Albertosaurus "

I'd bet an NIS or a Yuan that a couple of racially conscious states are already working on these.

GC

Anonymous said...

An actual British Prince.

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

Yeah, they were Krauts, all of 'em!

CanSpeccy said...

The greatest trick the heritably gifted ever pulled was convincing the world that heritability doesn't exist.

Only the heritably stupid would believe (a) that heritability doesn't exist, (b) that anyone, heritably gifted or otherwise, had convinced the world that heritability doesn't exist, or (c) that convincing the world that heritability doesn't exist is "the greatest trick."

But such rubbish is about all one could expect from a biologist who, having failed at great public expense as a banker, has now resorted to a career propagating bogus biology in the interests of the plutocracy.

Anonymous said...

How do you increase heritability? sounds like sophistry

Easy. You reduce the influence of environmental factors. In case of humans: good nutrition, stable families, good education, etc, etc

pat said...

Off topic

Why don't you accept bitcoin donations?

I don't really know much about it but if your blog accepted bitcoin payments I would make one just to learn what it is all about.

Albertosaurus

Anonymous said...

"During WWII I was attached to the British Army, and at one point we met elements of the Russian army in a northern German town. It seems this Russian division, recruited from some wild Asiatic province, had never seen plumbing. They were fascinated by water running out of a copper faucet. One fur-hatted Russian ripped the faucet off the wall and nailed it on a fence post. He was astonished when he turned on the faucet and no water came out.
He assumed the water just came out of the faucet. The concept of plumbing had never been revealed to him. You can laugh at it, but it wasn't native stupidity but just innocence.
When a director, star, or producer picks up the pen, I think the same thing happens. (There are exceptions of course.) They believe the words come out of the pen. Again it's not stupidity. It's innocence. They have no concept of how writing really works..."


Before iPads were the magic bullet , there as the iPen(and the iFaucet).
So, all these new education trends are really just another case of Puzo's Faucet Dilemma.

Anonymous said...

We must all stop committing Fact Crimes. Fact Speech is just terrible.

Anonymous said...

Conspiracy theorist here with the 0% genetics / 100% conspiracy theory of IQ!!!

What if intelligence is 100% nurture. Then wouldn't it make sense for the current upper class to cripple the public school children of the lower classes. For example to create a time consuming mind numbing educational system that leaves both the children and their parents in debt financing it. And even better provides pensioned government jobs for the children of the rich. Could that be what public education is really about.

For example if you are the founder of the largest computer software company you have to know that it is unlikely that lightning will strike twice. What's the odds of your kids being exposed to a disruptive technology early in their lives that public school kids were deprived of due to the lack of imagination of the management of public schools coupled with the need to maintain high salaries of the enormous staff. So maybe you would use your great wealth to make sure a system is in place to give as much advantage as possible to your kids.

peterike said...

Duck Dynasty is just the latest too-white thing to become unexpectedly popular, and hence must be destroyed.

George said...

HOW **DARE** WHITE PEOPLE TRY TO CUT A LINE.

Warning: don't try to expedite things in life if you're white, it's a terrible, terrible crime. Like taking advantage of heritable IQ.

https://medium.com/get-bullish/a5e5f4e9132f

George said...

Breaking news!

Cutting a line while white is a hate crime.

https://medium.com/get-bullish/a5e5f4e9132f

CanSpeccy said...

Anyhow, there's something wrong with Matt Ridley, beside the fact that as Chairman, he drove Northern Rock onto the rocks, costing the British taxpayer tends of billions of pounds.

His mouth is seems unconnected with his brain, assuming he has one, which I am increasingly inclined to doubt.

Sure, he talks a good line promoting the interests of the elite, but they are the people he lives among. A parrot in the same circumstances would do about as well.

And what's this heritable cleverness he's on about. You take some Mickey Mouse test of verbal facility or numerical competence and that gives a number that dictates for life your mental capacity subject to some minor environmental influence. LOL.

Would J.S. Bach really have rivaled Richard Feynman at quantum electrodynamics? Would Richard Feynman (IQ 123) have rivaled J.S. Bach in composing an oratorio that gives you goose bumps from head to foot? Would either of them have rivaled Steve in arranging words in interesting and amusing patterns?

Mental capacity comes in endless shapes, sizes and colors. Are the manifestations of mental capacity hereditary? Of course. Are they environmentally determined? Of course. Motzart Junior, uncoached by Motzart senior, would never have been heard of. Either way, he'd never have been heard of under all kinds of circumstances that require little imagination to conceive.

What we need is to give everyone a chance, while focusing further attention on those who show evidence they can make use of the opportunities provided them.

Luke Lea said...

Sulla said...

@ Sulla - Where did Ridley come up with that 50% number?

I think the unspoken word here is probably "at least." Studies of identical twins raised apart suggest genes may be responsible for considerably more than half, but for purposes of public consumption 50% is quite good enough.

OTH the suggestion near the end that inlherited differences in cognitive abilities might eventutally be overcome with good education (or something to that effect) made no sense. It contradicted the main point of the article, but contradictions like that are what make it publishable. Or at least in my hazy opinion.

Anonymous said...

From "The First World War and the British Aristocracy: The Titled Families Took It on the Chin...":

"The British Aristocracy and the War: The Doubtful Future of the House of Lords", Vanity Fair Magazine, Frederick James Gregg, March 1916:

"In the first sixteen months of operations no less than eight hundred men of title were killed in action, or died of their wounds, and over a thousand more were serving with the land or sea forces. ...

...if the proportionate losses continue... a whole generation of the nobility will have been wiped out by the time peace is declared... So, the defence of hereditary privilege will fall into weak hands, and it should be easy... to bring about the changes...

...

The Duke of Wellington's celebrated playgrounds of Eton have lived up to their reputation. That favorite school of the so-called ``upper class'' has had in the war more ``old boys'' and senior boys, has suffered more losses, and has figured more often in the records of distinguished services than any other civil institution in the Empire.

...

The whole social fabric of Great Britain has been changed. ... ...women of the aristocracy, who have never worked before, have turned their hands to any job that they can perform, from serving in ammunition factories to serving in hospitals."



"The Decline and Fall of the British Aristocracy", David Cannadine, 1990. Reviewed by Walter Arnstein:

"... World War I, which killed off a fifth of all peers and their immediate heirs..."

Anonymous said...

.. what evidence do we have that the American system hasn't already separated all the wheat from the chaff?


By definition the wheat and chaff can never be completely separated. For that state to be true would imply that no intelligent parents could ever give birth to less intelligent children, and that no unintelligent parents ever have intelligent children. Which is a genetic impossibility. (Assuming you understand genetics, which many 'HBDers' do not)

Anonymous said...

what evidence do we have that the American system hasn't already separated all the wheat from the chaff?
The "wheat" is our current elite class. Mysteriously, the fact that we live in HBD-topia, in which ruling elites are decided via test scores and 'good school' attendance is rarely acknowledged in these parts.

ben tillman said...

What if intelligence is 100% nurture.[?]

Then a dog or a spider or a tulip has the same intellectual potential as a human. Is this really the position you want to defend?

Anonymous said...

"It's all an act. [The Duck Dynasty guys are] not even real rednecks"

One look at the sons' wives should've told everyone that.

Anonymous said...

The Left embraces genetics when it comes to supporting the gay agenda and mentally disabled kids. Am I the only one that sees real push of the Left is just less good quality people, especially Whites?

Mr. Anon said...

"ben tillman said...

Everyone thinks intelligence exists, and everyone thinks it's inherited just like height, looks, etc."

This may have been true in the past. I wish it were true now. However a lot of young people seem completely ignorant of genetics - that it exists and that it is true. A lot of young women nowadays seem wholly indifferent to the nature, character, and prospects of the men they mate with, thinking that their child be entirely a product of their influence.

Anonymous said...

An actual British Prince.

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


The Battenbergs weren't members of the British royal family by paternal descent. They were descended from a morganatic marriage between Prince Alexander of Hesse-Darmstadt (Hesse und bei Rhein) and Countess Julia Hauke. Their children were not considered to be dynasts of Hesse-Darmstadt because of the unequal marriage and were granted the title of Prince of Battenberg with the lower style of "serene highness" instead. Prince Maurice was a member of the extended British royal family because his mother was Queen Victoria's youngest daughter Beatrice. But children of British royal princesses are not themselves British princes even though they do have places in the royal succession.

Anonymous said...

The "wheat" is our current elite class.


Who by their very existence refute the idea of hereditary intelligence. Rarely in history has any country been run by a more stupid and incompetent "elite". You probably have to go back to France in 1789 to find such rotten "wheat".

This also illustrates the necessity of judging intelligence in terms of "long term consequences in the real world" rather than "the score on a paper test". Our method of evaluating intelligence is not itself very intelligent.

ricpic said...

A very thoughtful piece until it got to the balderdash of "not reconciling ourselves to inequality!"

Solus said...

Poisoning one's own envirnoment, only a stupid would do that.

NOTA said...

anon 12:07:

Nothing says a group of smart people each seeking his own interests will lead automatically to systemically smart decisions being made. There are special circumstances where things work that way (like markets), but usually it doesn't work out like that.

Anonymous said...

One hundred years ago, the concept of noblesse oblige stated that those gifted by inheritance, such as the sons of viscounts, had to occasionally pay for their privileges by, say, leading infantry charges across No Man's Land.

Modern noblesse oblige: smart kids forced to be punching bags and pincushions in government schools, thanks to "zero tolerance anti-bullying" policies.

Anonymous said...

http://pjmedia.com/spengler/2013/11/14/putin-gets-it-and-we-dont/?singlepage=true

2Degrees said...

My prediction is coming true.

The elite are going to start seeing themselves as naturally superior and will act accordingly. God help the rest of us. They may have high IQ's, but they are also nepotistic and contemptuous of the less gifted - particularly if they are white. They have no sense of noblesse oblige. I would say they think they have a God-given right to loot the place, but they are so sure of their superiority that they don't need God. HBD could come back to bite us.

David said...

>Modern noblesse oblige: smart kids forced to be punching bags and pincushions in government schools, thanks to "zero tolerance anti-bullying" policies.<

This is literally accurate. Years ago I was horrified by an op-ed in the Nashville daily. It aggressively asserted that white people had "the duty to sacrifice their children" to "ensure we have a nation of racial equality." It compared this duty to that of soldiers in a war, and recommended that the same punishment for desertion should be applied to parents who were part of white flight. The writer wasn't black and the article was no intentional parody.

Matt said...

First, if intelligence was not substantially genetic, there would be no point in widening access to universities, or in grammar schools and bursaries at private schools trying to seek out those from modest backgrounds who have more to offer. If nurture were everything, kids unlucky enough to have been to poor schools would have irredeemably poor minds, which is nonsense. The bitter irony of the nature-nurture wars of the 20th century was that a world where nurture was everything would be horribly more cruel than one where nature allowed people to escape their disadvantages.

The Left, which has championed nurture against nature, is learning to take a different view — over homosexuality, for example, or learning disability, genetic influence is used as an argument for tolerance. A recent Guardian headline criticised Boris by saying “gifted children are failed by the system”, which presupposes the existence of (genetically) gifted children.


For Ridley to contrast genetics with "nurture" is dumb.

A situation where IQ variation is due to random variation (environment) would lack heritability, but would still favor looking for gifted poor kids, etc and "presuppose the existence of gifted children".

The second surprise is that genetic influence increases with age. If you measure the correlation between the IQs of identical twins and compare it with that of adopted siblings, you find the difference grows dramatically as they get older.

This is chiefly because families shape the environments of young children, whereas older children and adults select and evoke environments that suit their innate preferences, reinforcing nature.


That's probably not the case.
What is the case is that, as you approach the same age as your parent was when they took the test, you'll get more similar to them, because people age the same way as their parents.

E.g. if Steve lagged his peers at 20 and then reached his peak relative to his peers at 30, his kid will probably do the same, so his kid will have a more similar IQ to him when they are both compared at 30 years old.

It follows — the third surprise — that much of what we call the “environment” proves to be itself under genetic influence. Children who are very good at reading are likely to have parents who read a lot, schools that give them special opportunities and friends who recommend books. They create a reading-friendly environment for themselves. The well-documented association between family socio-economic status and IQ, routinely interpreted as an environmental effect, is, writes Professor Plomin and colleagues, “substantially mediated by genetic factors”.

Nah, we measure this via Openness to Experience and there is no strong relationship here. Appetite for learning, and willingness to actually *use* your f*cking mind is very separate from IQ. Too many high IQ intellectually uncurious people to think otherwise, frankly.

Professor Branestawm chose to marry the girl next door because she was good at ironing his shirts, whereas today he marries another professor because she writes gorgeous equations about quantum mechanics, and they have children who are professors squared.

Funnily enough, under models, an increase in assortative mating tends to reduce the upper limits of the SD.

...

Really, Ridley is quite unintelligent and unaware. Perhaps rather too typical of the British aristocracy, who have always been rather thick.

Anonymous said...

@ Pat / Albertosaurus - At the macroscopic level it is well established that the relative sizes of the brains among the races is probably the main determinant of racial IQ differences. The big brain races - East Asian and Western Europeans - have the high IQs. The correlation of IQ with total brain size is about 0.4.

The brains of the races also appear to be differently shaped. It may very well be that Asian and white brains have larger pre-frontal lobes. This isn't certain yet but if it is, the correlation between the size of the pre-frontal brain and IQ may be .50 or higher.


Brain sizes for Chinese and Caucasian panels have been found by MRI.

One example that controlled well (and so was the exception in not finding a much larger Caucasian brain size) is -

http://www.researchgate.net/publication/41427316_The_construction_of_a_Chinese_MRI_brain_atlas_a_morphometric_comparison_study_between_Chinese_and_Caucasian_cohorts/file/50463523dc94f5cf3d.pdf

The differences in brain volume in total have the Caucasian male panel at around 99% of the volume of the Chinese male panel. That's pretty standard.

Based on existing regression equations for IQ within population, that predicts about 0.5 IQ points difference. The correlation is as more or less as you have described it is, but the actual slope is not too impressive. A difference of around 5 times this, as in B-W would be around 2.5 points.

In terms of brain shape difference, the Caucasian brains tend to have relatively more in the areas relating to sentience / consciousness (e.g. superior frontal lobe, where the difference is largest), consciously controlled physical movements and visual-spatial cognition, while the Chinese brains tended to have more in the temporal lobe (meaning) and in the cerebellum, which tends to relate to unconscious / muscle memory type abilities that "finesse" physical movements. These differences are larger than the 98.5% total difference.

Ashkenazi Jews seem to be extra smart because of extra rich dendrite branching but they also have myopia like other high IQ peoples

Ashkenazis seem to have systematically smaller brains than Northwest Europeans, adjusted for size.

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3171282/ - American Ashkenazi Jews compared against Northwest Europeans, both samples being from an Alzheimers database including unaffected family controls.

Anonymous said...

Liberals can deny race, even after accepting average differences. Its an average. Doesn't change the bottom line. Black guy can be just as smart as you, or smarter... and have a bigger penis at the same time. None of genes are exclusive.

Also they can deny even the averages too and close any gaps completely naturally. The longer they deny it, the closer that gap will get. Or accept it and close the gaps anyway.

Does not change a dam thing does it?

You know that when people mix the traits don't go way right? It literally means that a black person can have a white baby. Has happened many times already. GO check.

Lol.

David said...

>It literally means that a black person can have a white baby.<

Is that where Bigfoot came from?

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