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September 16, 2008

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Fundamentalists take the Bible literally. Do evangelicals? I thought they were something "in between" mainline Protestants and the fundies.

Why do people insist that he wrote the books himself? Because he said so? Because a few other people said so? I don't believe anything about the guy. He's a PR creation because he is black, period.

You're talking about people who are professional liars (politicians), and you're acting like they are telling you the truth about their own background! They have numerous political operatives in either party to squelch the truth. It happens all the time. They all have speechwriters--all of them.

See, I don't believe much of what I read about these guys anyway, certainly not about their grades in school. Nobody here has any idea whether Obama was helped up or not. He may have been well connected back then too. Nobody here knows. I certainly believe he was. I'm from Illinois, and I saw the way he was treated in the primaries for his US Senate run, and how he was hailed as some sort of brilliant orator and intellect after delivering a mediocre speech at the 2004 Democratic Convention. He's all air and corruption, as far as I can see, and he's been helped out by very powerful people all along the way.

BTW, I've taken engineering classes (including math and physics) at a top engineering university, and believe me, just because somebody takes a physics major, it does not make them some sort of intellectual superstar. Ivy Leagues are easier than top engineering schools, where they try to flunk out half the class from the get-go.

Who cares about Obama's IQ? I care about "his" policies (in fact, the policies that the people who are funding his $300 million dollar campaign are paying him to put out). And they all stink, just like his political buddies and his crappy ghost-written books.

The trouble is that the mainline Protestants are generally soon-to-be-ex Christians. Their leaders care more about global warming then Christ crucified. The problem with that is demographic. If your primary concern is to "tread lightly upon the Earth," then the lightest way to tread is not to tread at all. Have either no children, or perhaps one.

The bible thumping knuckleheads who actually believe in all that "Jesus rose from the dead" mumbo jumbo are the one having all the brats. The children of the responsible -- father in the home, married to the mom, family not on welfare -- will be their children.

Plenty of people have children because they don't remember their birth control. But if you're the kind of chick who doesn't forget her pills, why, in the modern world, would you bother to give birth?

There will always be the children of the irresponsible, and in large numbers too. But the children of the responsible will inherit the earth. And the only folks who are having large numbers of those are the bible thumping knuckleheads.

HS,

What Physics class was the hardest class you have ever taken. I looked ath Penn's physics listings and see the same classes every other university offers. Did you start out as something other than a pre=law major? Surely Physics 150 with lab taught from Halliday and Resnick was not the hardest class you have ever taken.

Unfortunately, the elite universities are full of high-g liberals. High g give you the ability to think logically, but many, perhaps most, don't bother to think logically. A lot of intelligent people use their intelligence to create arguements to justify their emotional beliefs rather than use their intelligence to find the correct thing to believe.

Or, you know, it's actually possible that YOU are wrong about politics.

Great Post Half Sigma
Obama's problem isn't his high IQ. He has an IQ of at least 135 and could be as high as 150. However, remember that the higher the deviation from the average (100) the less IQ scores mean. Law school isn't that difficult by the way. It requires however huge amounts of reading and memorization (a lot of work).
The main difference between a race realist and a racist is probably that the racist wants different legal treatment (rights) for black. However, race realism would be considered as racism by most people. Socialodemocrats have convinced that most people have exactly the same capabilities, and that all differences are due to environment, negating one most of evolution most obvious concludions (that all organims slowlu adopt to their specific environment).
Saying that the median and mode IQ of blacks is lower than the comparable of white people is racist according to how the word is popularly used.

Greetings
Teen realist Gannon

"What's the difference between a race realist and a racist? The race realist understands The g Factor, The Bell Curve, and other works of scientific research."

Apparently you don't understand Bayes Thereom. But I'll interpret it in plain English for you:

When somebody whose honesty is in doubt (i.e. any politician) makes an extraordinary claim (that Barak Obama graduated in the 10% at Harvard Law), there's a pretty good chance it's a lie.

But look, show me independent verification of Obama's honors and I will re-consider.

Maybe people should be asking whether or not Obama is more intelligent than McCain because he's a better liar.

I'd bet anything he didn't write either one of his books. F'ing liar!

"Why do people insist that he wrote the books himself? Because he said so? Because a few other people said so?"

He wrote Dreams from My Father in 1995. At the time, he was teaching at the University of Chicago but was far from being a celebrity. As a result, it's unlikely that Obama used a ghostwriter.

Half,

You should setup a login process on your site that requires your readers to submit to an IQ test (while still remaining anonymous) before they are allowed to post a comment.

Then, next to their handle in the "Posted By:" section - display their IQ test result.

"He wrote Dreams from My Father in 1995. At the time, he was teaching at the University of Chicago but was far from being a celebrity. As a result, it's unlikely that Obama used a ghostwriter."

Why, because he wasn't a "celebrity" yet? I wouldn't be surprised if he had academic connections that helped him. It seems he was a "celebrity" of sorts in the group.

"Teen realist Gannon"

http://www.people.com/people/article/0,,20225898,00.html

Didn't you see 15 year old Miley Cyrus' new Beau Gannon? He's 20 and from what I gather nobody is making a fuss. You're winning your war and gaining back the rights of grown men everywhere, Kudos.

"Why, because he wasn't a "celebrity" yet? I wouldn't be surprised if he had academic connections that helped him. It seems he was a "celebrity" of sorts in the group. "

I can't understand the vitriolic reaction of some people on this site towards one black man that has achieved incredible success in his life and may be on his way to the top. It's just not possible because most blacks are stupid. Its thoughts like these that give way to people automatically assuming we're all racists.

My problem with so called "race realism":

With all the studies you point out, it is near impossible to figure out if it's a genetic traight rather than how the children were raised. This is a big problem.
Another thing, it's nearly impossible to solve this problem (really can you come up with a way to distinguish between the two?)

Really it's nothing about race, it's more about

nature vs nuture

and we all know how far along the scientific community is with that.

Your bias creates a "self fulliling prophecy" that slows down the progress of equalization. Personally I'm all for equality and judging someone by their actions not there appperance.

Humans are visual creatures they judge others on what they first see. Skin and eyes are a part of that and they're not something you can easily change without major surgery. I vote that people judge others on thier clothing first and formost, because that something you can change.

"A lot of intelligent people use their intelligence to create arguements to justify their emotional beliefs rather than use their intelligence to find the correct thing to believe."
Oh, oh jesus that irony made me laugh so hard.
really halfy and just which is the "correct way" to behave? hmm...?

ok rant over

"He wrote Dreams from My Father in 1995. At the time, he was teaching at the University of Chicago but was far from being a celebrity. As a result, it's unlikely that Obama used a ghostwriter."

Sure, he "wrote" the book right before his Illinois State Senate run, which encompassed the area of Hyde Park, Chicago, home of the University of Chicago. Hardly a leftist in that area who would help the golden child promote himself by ghost-writing a book.

Funny how plugged in to the Chicago Corruption Machine Obama was then too, and how convicted super-felon Tony Rezko helped fund his Illinois Senate campaign.

See, the whole deal with this guy stinks.

Don't know what Obama's IQ is but there's no way Sarah Palin is 115. She had no idea what the Bush Doctrine was even after Charlie Gibson put it in context for her. The average IQ of white university students is 105 (see Richard Lynn). Palin could hardly graduate at a lesser school. I'd put her IQ at about 90, especially when you consider all her nutty views. She is a FUCKING IDIOT who shouldn't be in elected office.

"What's the difference between a race realist and a racist? The race realist understands The g Factor, The Bell Curve, and other works of scientific research."

Racism is a meaningless term because it has been used primarily as a way to shut down debate rather than make a point.

What exactly does the word mean? Does it mean you want to kill minorities or just dislike them? Can minorities be "racist"?

Liberals call any white conservative who does not worship minorities "racists". The word is meaningless and badly needs to be dropped.

"Didn't you see 15 year old Miley Cyrus' new Beau Gannon? He's 20 and from what I gather nobody is making a fuss."

I'll agree the AOC should be lowered to 16. 16 year old girls are often more mature than 22 year old men and they are biologically ready to have children.

But 15 to me just seems a wee bit to close to the danger zone for my tastes.

"But 15 to me just seems a wee bit to close to the danger zone for my tastes."

C'mon, live a little! And I'd rather get my hands on the gymnast Shawn Johnson than Miley Cyrus. Just delicious...

I believe that 14 is fair because:
1) Girls enter high school that age
2) 14/15 has always been the age for girls in western society to become debutantes.
3) According to modern psicologists, at 14 girls have enough coginitive, emotional and intelectual maturity to consent on sex
4) 14 year old girls have reached adult IQs.
5) At 14 the average girl has been bleeding and matured for 3 years.

I have to give Sigma some respect for writing this. I didn't know he had it in him.

Now I believe he is not a racist but an IQ elitist, from which he discriminates against many blacks (and others), but the Palin thing shows me he has equal disdain for low IQ whites.
LOL

We have to create a new catagory for this type of bigotry. We can call it IQism or G'ism...Cognitive Discrimination.

"Now I believe he is not a racist..."

At last, the stamp of approval! Maybe you could send him a signed and notarized certificate. That way when someone accuses him of racism, he can just whip it out and silence them. Truly, this is a great day.

>>why Republicans are unable to select smart people for high office. Undoubtedly, it's the Christian influence in the party.

Because smart Republicans rarely make a career out of holding public office. They realize they can lead far more rewarding lives (and make more money) in the private sector.

For Democrats, on the other hand, holding public office is considered an attractive career. A far greater share of the best and the brighest among Democrats will seek public office, compared with those among Republicans.

Palin is an End-Times believer She actually knows there were dinosaurs on the Ark and the world is 6K years old. By God, I think we've found the Missing Link.

In regards to the comments made by "none of your business", it is possible to separate the effects of nature and nurture. For instance, studies have shown that the correlation among iqs of unrelated adults adopted into the same household is approximately 0. This indicates that "how the children were raised" does not really have any effect as long as the children were not severely deprived. Furthermore the correlation in iq at adulthood, among identical twins who were adopted at birth into different families, is approximately .75. This proves that adult iqs (and not childhood iqs which can be affected by nurture) are determined mostly by genetics, as long as the environments are not extraordinarily (think Africa) bad.

I think HS has completely nailed the issue. All of the evidence, including acknowledging the affirmative action he probably recieved, indicates Obama has a very high iq.

"Palin is an End-Times believer She actually knows there were dinosaurs on the Ark and the world is 6K years old. By God, I think we've found the Missing Link."

You've managed yet again to add nothing useful to this discussion. Nice work!

Oh no, racists. Maybe you should just delete their comments; you have a rather self-righteous policy about that.

Sorry, but I don't think law school -- wherever -- is as difficult as almost any graduate curriculum in the hard sciences or engineering. Not that this means Obama isn't intelligent, or (in a way) as intelligent as someone who excels in the physical/quantitative sciences. But personally I always have a modicum of doubt, and ask questions like 'Yeah, OK, he did well in law school, but how well would he have done if he had studied physics or chemistry instead?'. His brother gets big bonus points there.

You write
"But to my ears, Palin is the one who sounds incredibly stupid."

Your classism is showing. Palin is very good at speaking to the masses, as Reagan was. This requires real smarts.

***This indicates that "how the children were raised" does not really have any effect as long as the children were not severely deprived. Furthermore the correlation in iq at adulthood, among identical twins who were adopted at birth into different families, is approximately .75. This proves that adult iqs (and not childhood iqs which can be affected by nurture) are determined mostly by genetics, as long as the environments are not extraordinarily (think Africa) bad.***

But this could simply mean that nature begins at conception: a mother who doesn't take of herself during pregnancy will generally not produce babies as smart or healthy as a mother who does. By the time the kid is adopted, that's already been played out.

***Sorry, but I don't think law school -- wherever -- is as difficult as almost any graduate curriculum in the hard sciences or engineering.***

It isn't, but graduating magna cum laude from Harvard isn't an ordinary law school experience, either. The point isn't that Obama is as smart as a Ph.D chemical engineer, the point is that he's a genuinely intelligent man.

To Joshua- Good point. My main point was that "how the children were raised" (ie after birth) does not really have any effect on the child's iq. Outside of mothers who abused alcohol or drugs, I do not believe anything has been found which substantially alters the iq of the babies before their births. Once the child is born, only breastfeeding has been shown to alter the baby's iq and even then only in certain cases.
Furthermore, I do not think that the .75 figure for separated identical twins means necessarily that .75 is the correlation when nature and prenatal environment are controlled for because prenatal environments are not necessarily the same for identical twins because the twins compete for food, oxygen, and room. This explains why identical twins are sometimes vastly different in weight at birth. Thus, it could be the case that identical twins have less similar prenatal environments than regular siblings. Perhaps studies of fraternal vs identical twins vs siblings could help solve this problem.

Underachiever

"Studies have shown that the correlation among iqs of unrelated adults adopted into the same household is approximately 0."

0 are you kidding me?

Can you link these "studies"?
Or, at the very least, can you answer a few questions about them:

What were the studies hypotheses?
What were the study’s conclusions?
Who paid/supported the studies?
How large were the numbers in the studies? (how many people interviewed)
Do they give information on the parent's backgrounds (what sort of job they had, if they value school, etc...)
Is it possible they could have cherry picked their interviewees, to come to their aspired conclusion?
What sort of iq tests were administered? (were they pattern recognition? did they include a segment on English or history ?)

Although I have no proof, I believe the ideal of adoption belongs to that of a certain culture, specifically one that respects education, books and planning.

What I'd really like to see is a study on the iqs of identical twins who were raised in radically different backgrounds, say if one twin lived the entire time with parents who were college professors and the other twin was raised with a petty criminal who stole cars.


Here’s one of the first things I got from googling identical twins adopted iq
http://www.molwick.com/en/intelligence/055-twins-brothers.html#texto

In the first sentence it says:
"I think that it is generally accepted that diverse studies among identical twin brothers, with identical genes, have shown correlations in intelligence of 80% or close to this figure."

Now it says "correlation" but it doesn't say anything about how big the differences can be. For example 80% of identical twins could share the same iq but then 20% could have a difference of 30 points or so...that's a pretty big difference...

I'm too lazy to do any real research...

Oh Oh yay! Studies that report iq increasing after birth!

http://iq-test.learninginfo.org/iq03.htm

Here`s an example of what is on the page

"Other examples of IQ increase through early enrichment projects can be found in Israel, where children with a European Jewish heritage have an average IQ of 105 while those with a Middle Eastern Jewish heritage have an average IQ of only 85. Yet when raised on a kibbutz, children from both groups have an average IQ of 115."

that`s a difference 30 points! I have no idea what a kibbutz is but I`m happy.

noyb, there is a good deal of research on a variety of outcomes that separates what are called "shared" and "non-shared" environments. Shared means immediate family/household and non-shared means pretty much everything else. It appears that the most important enivironmental factor in cognitive and cultural devleopment is the child's peer group, not their parents.

It makes sense that human beings are hard-wired to develop in conjunction with the social milieu of their future adult environment than with the out-going environment. Unless a child's only social interaction is their parent then the effects of parental bhavior is rather smallish. The bes thing a parent can do for their child is to provide them with a good developmental peer group.

"Once the child is born, only breastfeeding has been shown to alter the baby's iq and even then only in certain cases."

I debunked that nonsense:

http://www.halfsigma.com/2007/11/breastfeeding-d.html

"The Evangelical Christians (who are the lowest IQ Christians"

I point out that Palin is even a lower IQ subset of Evangelicals - End-Time believers, and besides the dinosaurs and such, they also speak in toungues so the Enemy doesn't know what their saying. It's neither here nor there that they themselves or anybody else have no idea what their saying. Such a low level IQ could be a manifestation of the ecological missing link. Get it?

A racist is a race-realist who has obnoxious black neighbors.

"It isn't, but graduating magna cum laude from Harvard..."

I said "wherever". Harvard, wherever -- I don't care. I still have doubts. As a person educated in the quantitative sciences I just have more respect for people who excel in those fields; this has been solidly reinforced by my life experience.

"...the point is that he's a genuinely intelligent man."

Yes, I know. I conceded that point already:

http://www.halfsigma.com/2008/09/barack-obamas-high-iq-brother.html#comment-130850538

"The point isn't that Obama is as smart as a Ph.D chemical engineer,..."

Actually, the point here seems to be to compare Obama's intelligence to that of others, regardless. Which I think past a point is silly. And it's now well past that point.

none of your business


"four studies of genetically unrelated siblings adopted and reared from infancy to adulthood in the same homes show sibling IQ correlations that range from .05 to -.03 with a median of about 0.0" - Intelligence, Heredity, and Environment by Robert J. Sternberg, Grigorenko

Dr. Segal's "research has found that environment still has 'minimal or no effect' on them [unrelated siblings adopted together at a very young age] in terms of behavior and intelligence"
and "only 25 percent of the differences between twins — virtual, fraternal or identical — can be accounted for by their environment, 75 percent by genetics." - In Studies of Virtual Twins, Nature Wins Again
New York Times

Considering that the second article comes from the NYT, one can rest assure that it is not going to be biased in favor of genetic explanations.

For the record, this took about 5 minutes to find. Google isn't tough guys.

Just so everyone is aware, childhood environment does affect childhood IQ while the child is young and only while the child is young. Once the child grows up, the environment he was raised in becomes negligible. Only the genes (and some as yet unidentified factors, ie, not how one was raised) matter in intelligence by the time one is an adult and adult IQ is what's important in life anyways. Some articles average the environmental impacts on IQ in childhood and adulthood; this makes it falsely appear as though household environment has a non-negligible effect in adults.

I forgot reading that breastfeeding did not matter; HS is correct. I apologize for the error.

I wonder why environment affects IQ in children but not in adults? Is this true of other traits also? For example is height more genetic in adults than it is in children?

"I wonder why environment affects IQ in children but not in adults?"

It doesn't. "IQ tests" given to young children test a much narrower range of cognitive abilities, and thus are more easily inflated by coaching.

Childhood IQ tests mimic the kind of instruction that higher social class parents give to their children, either directly or through pre-schools.

IQ is a measure of g. Environment affects IQ in children, but not necessarily the g in children. In other words, a great environment artificially raises the IQ in children, but has no affect on their underlying intelligence.

HalfSigma: "People who are upset that Obama has higher g need to reflect on why Republicans are unable to select smart people for high office."

http://anepigone.blogspot.com/2008/09/if-only-republicans-voted-in-gop.html

Check out this post by the Audacious Epigone.

1. Basically, Republicans should impose very strict restrictions on who can vote in the primaries. Republican primaries should be closed and registration to vote in the primary should be closed before primary season begins.

In open and semi-closed states (the same thing as open really), Democrats and Independents are able to vote in the Repbulican primaries.

2. Delegates should be allocated proportionally, not by winner take all.

If these rules had been in place, the Repubs would have been able to elect a smart guy like Romney.

If children's IQ scores reflected cultural advantage and not just g, then we need better tests. There have been many studies showing programs like Head Start can boost a child's IQ dramatically (at least short term) but these gains are dismissed as not reflecting g. Well if IQ can be so easily increased while g stays the same, there's obviously something really wrong with the tests and they are useless for measuring whether programs like head start can increase intelligence. Perhaps culture reduced IQ tests are needed or do these too suffer from the same problem?

HS has proven to my satisfaction that Obama has very high IQ - certainly enough to be President and in all likelihood higher than other P and VP candidates.

Racism: Basing legislation on explicit race criteria, e. g. "Senators must be WASPs".

Race realism: Basing legislation on other reasonable and objective criteria that happen to affect the outcomes of various race groups, e. g. "Race may not be considered in college admissions."

Dan: That Head Start does not affect IQ (in the longer run) does not necessarily mean that it is a pointless waste of money. It could also strengthen social skills that increase future income or decrease criminal behavior. Perhaps part of these social skills may be an increased ability to sit still and fill out pointless forms, increasing test performance overall?

Re Palin: Can't we just agree that Palin is there to motivate the Red staters to vote since now a vote for McCain is a vote for Jesus and you wouldn't want to mess that up, would you? I don't particularily care why a Socialist is not elected as long as that is the outcome.

If anyone has doubts about Obama's intellect I suggest that they read the syllabus and the test answer discussions he wrote in documents from his stint as a law intructor at U of Chicago. To my reading, the material appears to be that of a first rate intellect. Links to these documents are on this page at the NYT.

http://www.nytimes.com/2008/07/30/us/politics/30law.html?_r=1&sq=obama%20university%20of%20chicago%20law%20teaching&st=cse&adxnnl=1&oref=slogin&scp=1&adxnnlx=1221920049-6aRsvoQzkcXkkOUx+/MZVw

The protestant sect with the highest average IQ is Unitarian, not Episcopal and Presbyterian. Obama's grandparents who raised him during his formative years attended Unitarian church (see below Wikipedia link). Obama never mentions that he was raised as a Unitarian, I guess Unitarian sounds sort of ultra-liberal and elitist so Obama avoids disclosing this. Since during the past several decades most Unitarians have become religious atheists, perhaps Obama does not consider Unitarianism to be a genuine religion that could adequately serve as cover for being "religious enough" to run for President. The white branch of Obama's church, the United Church of Christ (AKA "Congregationalists"), is a liberal protestant sect that like Unitarianism stemmed from New England Puritan roots.

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

The fact that breastfeeding doesn't predict between pair sibling IQ difference is fairly damning. Assuming no effect of breastfeeing, I calculated what the average paternal IQ would be.

New Zealand cohort
Not breastfed Breastfed
Mother IQ 96.6 102.9
Child IQ 97.2 103.6
Father 92.25 111.5

British cohort
Not breastfed Breastfed
Mother IQ 96.5 105.1
Child IQ 97.3 104.2
Father 92.25 111.5

It doesn't seem very likely that the paternal IQ would be twice as large as the maternal IQ gap. Do dumb women chose even dumber men?

Racial/population differences in the effects of breastfeeding are plausible. Northern Europeans have been feeding children cow milk way longer than Native Americans or West Africans. So if cow milk gives GG allele people an IQ boost, we would expect GG to be most common in whites. Which it is.

re: "If anyone has doubts about Obama's intellect I suggest that they read the syllabus and the test answer discussions he wrote in documents from his stint as a law intructor at U of Chicago. To my reading, the material appears to be that of a first rate intellect. Links to these documents are on this page at the NYT.

http://www.nytimes.com/2008/07/30/us/politics/30law.html?_r=1&sq=obama%20university%20of%20chicago%20law%20teaching&st=cse&adxnnl=1&oref=slogin&scp=1&adxnnlx=1221920049-6aRsvoQzkcXkkOUx+/MZVw

Posted by: Galtonian | September 20, 2008 at 10:44 AM"

Late to this dance as I have been traveling and working. Have read the CORPUS ( tests etc. ). I am not impressed. I urge others to do the same.

If his tests represent a HIGH STANDARD of intellectual difficulty for a course in a LAW SCHOOL I know now why as a country we are FU**ED. His tests are meant for Parrots.

Dan Kurt

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