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September 24, 2012

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While from a "told you so" point of view I hope it comes, given the trends so far I am less than optimistic that the realization of black genetic inferiority will turn out to be a positive development for regular white people such as myself.

At lunch today I was talking with an Asian co-worker. He was talking about how education is the most important resource in the country and it was the only hope to solve our problems. I remarked that kids more or less end up where they do based on IQ and SES background, and while education is bad in this country things wouldn't change that much if it were good. Most people won't and shouldn't go to college, etc.

He flatly denied this was the case and gave me the tiger parent spiel that any kid can make it if they work hard enough. One reason Asians will never endorse HBD is it would mean admitting their tiger parent styles are largely pointless. They will never do this. I remember spending 20 hours a week (after school) tutoring a retarded kid at one of those Korean cram schools. They were convinced he could get into Harvard.

[HS: They get excellent grades, and seldom get arrested for public intoxication or marijuana possession, so Tiger parenting does have results.]

HS,

Does it? HBD holds that if they have high IQ they won't do those things regardless of tiger parenting or not.

"Every public school in the United States has aimed for the same goal over the past decade: that all students be proficient in math and reading by 2014."

"Under the new approach, low performers will be required to make larger gains each year than higher-achieving students so that the gap between student groups is cut in half by 2017."

So they've gone from demanding 100% gap-closing by 2014 to 50% gap-closing by 2017. Progress!

Of course, HBD-realistic goals would involve ditching g-loaded test 'standards' altogether, because teachers have little to do with the result...but yeah, it's great that NAM's are being singled out. Everyone on this blog will cheer. I'll cheer, too...bronx style.

' I remarked that kids more or less end up where they do based on IQ and SES background, and while education is bad in this country things wouldn't change that much if it were good'

If education was good in this country, NAMs (and everyone else) would learn better values. Values are more important to a well-functioning society than IQ.

Even Inductivist admits that other factors are necessary to determine the high level of violence among blacks.
http://inductivist.blogspot.com/2010/04/does-iq-explain-racial-differences-in.html.

I suspect learning better values is key, and schools should undertake this type of instruction.

And no, IQ is not the end-all, be-all of where you end up. A high IQ child who never studies or uses his/her mind to think logically will end up underperforming on academic tests. Potential is not performance.

I wonder if part of the change in verbal SAT scores has less to do with IQ and more to do with societal change. People spend less time conversing and more time watching TV and playing video games. I can't imagine that that would have no affect on people's verbal abilities. It seems like IQ helps people pick up skills faster but not if they don't practice their skills at all.

"[HS: They get excellent grades, and seldom get arrested for public intoxication or marijuana possession, so Tiger parenting does have results.]"

Are you aware at how frequently you equivocate between a nature and nurture standpoint, sometimes in a single article? In your main article, you're advocating HBD, but here, you're taking a nurturist standpoint.

The results of twin and adoption studies have shown no correlation between shared environment and behavioral or intelligence similarities between individuals. Genetics doesn't explain everything, but nurture explains approximately zero.

[HS: I've been consistent in stating that genes determine success at g-loaded activities like reading comprehension, while there are various non-g-loaded BEHAVIORS that are strongly influenced by values.]

"[HS: They get excellent grades, and seldom get arrested for public intoxication or marijuana possession, so Tiger parenting does have results.]"

"Does it? HBD holds that if they have high IQ they won't do those things regardless of tiger parenting or not."

Exactly (well, IQ and conscientiousness, introversion, etc, etc...)! Glad to see that I have convinced you, asdf... ;)

Insider,

Academic performance is measured by scores on g-loaded tests. This is what most people use to evaluate where a school/teacher is "good" or not. If you taught great values but it didn't show up in g-loaded tests people would consider you a failure.

Values can't be taught because that would mean some values are better then others, which is thoughtcrime.


"He flatly denied this was the case and gave me the tiger parent spiel that any kid can make it if they work hard enough."

Hope you told him that in order to motivate NAMs to work hard, they need to feel the sting of the lash across their pitiful shoulders.

'Academic performance is measured by scores on g-loaded tests. This is what most people use to evaluate where a school/teacher is "good" or not.'

And? This is a stupid standard for measurement, then. You aren't really measuring much of what or how the teacher taught when the test has more g-loading. A realistic HBD metric would change the test so that the standard more reflects what the teacher taught.

'Values can't be taught because that would mean some values are better then others, which is thoughtcrime.'

This seems sarcastic. If so, then yes, the emphasis on relativism in recent times is annoying.

'In your main article, you're advocating HBD, but here, you're taking a nurturist standpoint.'

Yeah, because it's not -all- one or the other. Even if genetics are responsible for most of the result doesn't mean that nurture (defined in a meaningful sense, narrower than 'environment') won't be significant.

I liked this quote from a NAM Ward boss looking forward 4 to 8 yrs complaining about the inevitable de-funding of her constituent's precious sinecure.

“We need to have as high expectations for any child in Ward 2 as Ward 7, for any child in Ward 3 as Ward 8. There should be no difference,” she said. “The playing field should be level, and if the playing field is not level, then we should bring more resources into areas of greatest need.”

The irony runs deep. See, in the old days level playing field meant *equal* resources/rules. The idea was NAM's were just as good if only they had the nice facilities, teachers, and textbooks of the white kids. Of course, it failed miserably, and so over time "level playing field" has been warped to mean equal outcomes/scores. So we'll [read whites, ie. Mitt's 53%] _spend_ What-Ever-It-Takes to get the NAM's to perform at par for whites. Of course What-Ever-It-Takes disproportionately filters to NAM's themselves, such as the Ward Boss being quoted. Too bad no one bothered to point out the contradiction in her tired old metaphor. Perhaps correcting her would be raycist?

JayMan,

Convinced me of what?

I believe that:

1) Genes are the most important factor in life outcomes.

2) However, values and behaviors can be influenced by environment.

3) Also, environment is largely about SES and common sense. The kind of things parents, especially tiger parents, worry about is silly. But plopping a high IQ kid in the ghetto really would mess them up.

So unless a parent is fucking up their kids life or not providing a safe home environment it's all close enough to the same to not matter. Common sense parenting is equal to or greater then tiger parenting.

However, this does not mean parents have no influence. They could make really bad decisions that screw up their kids lives even if they have good 'g'.

"Academic performance is measured by scores on g-loaded tests. This is what most people use to evaluate where a school/teacher is "good" or not. If you taught great values but it didn't show up in g-loaded tests people would consider you a failure."

I was lazy, dejected, and apathetic in college because I underperformed on the SAT (and went to a college that Half Sigma and most readers here would deem as "crappy"). I largely do not regret many of the academic consequences of my indolence, such as low grades relative to my true abilities, which were not accurate measured by the SAT due to sleep deprivation and anxiety, since it was based on a premise that still seems to be correct: performance on highly g-loaded tests matter are of paramount importance, not performance in an academic environment.

I am an educational nihilist: the content of education doesn't matter; the factual information in a curriculum is primarily irrelevant economically, except as a means of signaling g and personality traits, such as conscientiousness, to employers.

The influence of the SAT (and ACT) is omnipresent in American tertiary education and labor market; it seems to be the alpha and omega of American education and meritocracy. While Protagoras stated that man is the measure of all things, the SAT is the measure of man. It is the gold standard, immune to the printing press of grade inflation.

Indiana funds its schools directly through state government (although the schools are still locally run), and the criteria they use for funding is largely based on how many kids in the school get free federal lunches. The more free lunches, the poorer your school population is, so the more money you get.

This is not exactly HBD aware, but is similar. Over time, the "good" schools are going to have to pay their teachers less and increase class sizes, while meeting state standards.

I believe that your personality is 70% genetic, 20% based on your role within your peer group, and 10% based on parenting quality.

Does that mean that I should just be a bad parent? No, because then my kids will only reach 70 to 90% of their potential, rather than 80 to 100%. I might not have much ability to influence the outcome, but I still am going to try my hardest.

[HS: Personality and behavior are not the same thing. Whether someone is extroverted or introverted is strongly influenced by genetics, but whether someone routinely gets drunk until they vomit and has frequent casual sex (Jersey Shore behaviors) is very much a matter of values.]

T,

I largely agree with your post. Studies show parental effects are small, but peer groups effects are large (maybe approaching 50%). However, selecting a good peer group for your kids is part of being a good parent (you largely control their peers, especially when young). So part of that peer group effect ought to be considered a parent effect. It's just that choosing the right school, neighboorhood, and activity partners for your kids matters a lot more then curfew hours, museum trips, or any other such nonsense.

[HS: I've been consistent in stating that genes determine success at g-loaded activities like reading comprehension, while there are various non-g-loaded BEHAVIORS that are strongly influenced by values.]

Okay, I get your point, although I'm still not sure I agree. What about future time orientation? If you're mentally inclined to project your imagination far enough into the future to forecast the potential consequences of your actions, do you need values to live a stable and prosperous life? If you're incapable of doing that, how are "values" going to help you?

I think people's behaviors are more influenced by their available options that they are by ideology or values.

"And? This is a stupid standard for measurement, then. You aren't really measuring much of what or how the teacher taught when the test has more g-loading. A"

g is the the main predicative variable for future academic and job performance, not whether a student was able to complete homework assignments or recall material for an exam. That's why g is important or the perception that it is important (as it is shown with the preoccupation with college prestige in elite employers).

'That's why g is important or the perception that it is important '

That is irrelevant to whether using a g-loaded test is a good standard for 'teacher performance.' So fine, use those tests for predictive purposes, but do not use them to assess teacher performance.

"g is the the main predicative variable for future academic and job performance, not whether a student was able to complete homework assignments or recall material for an exam. That's why g is important or the perception that it is important (as it is shown with the preoccupation with college prestige in elite employers)."

g explains about 50% of the variation in academic success and the other 50% is probably explained largely by conscientiousness. Being able to complete homework assignments, show leadership and recall material for exams is just as relevant as g in determing college prestige and grades.

"That is irrelevant to whether using a g-loaded test is a good standard for 'teacher performance.' So fine, use those tests for predictive purposes, but do not use them to assess teacher performance."

One's teacher performance is irrelevant when considering one's future socioeconomic position. It is precisely that due to the intractable nature of augmenting g through education that teacher performance is meaningless. As I said before, I am an educational nihilist, and consider the SAT to be important psychometric instrument, not because it predicts academic outcomes by being g-loaded, but simply because it is a good measure of g, and that is also valued outside of an academic setting.

"but do not use them to assess teacher performance."

Who cares if its good or not. That's what people use. How the fuck is the department of education going to measure teaching good values? Meanwhile, parents want the government to promise them some magic solution and someone to blame if it doesn't happen.

Education is about parents, not kids.

Asians definitely need Tiger parenting. Look at China especially in the last few centuries. Totally drugged up and hooked on opium. Even today Asians struggle with video game addiction. It's a public emergency in China and Korea. Nowhere else in the world do you see this level of extreme addiction. Asians really need a tightly structured environment to be successful. Their own history is proof of that from belief systems that demand conformity and obedience, to emperor worship, to modern day Tiger moms. Asians need a demanding superior to yell at them.

Conquistador,

Most of the tiger cubs I knew were video game addicts. This is an especially big problem once they get to college.

@asdf:

"I believe that:

1) Genes are the most important factor in life outcomes."

Probably not *the most* important (most traits are less than 50% heritable).

"2) However, values and behaviors can be influenced by environment."

I'm not arguing with that.

"So unless a parent is fucking up their kids life or not providing a safe home environment it's all close enough to the same to not matter. Common sense parenting is equal to or greater then tiger parenting."

This is more or less the case, and the point that I and others have made.

"However, this does not mean parents have no influence. They could make really bad decisions that screw up their kids lives even if they have good 'g'."

Yes, if you lock your kid in a dark room their whole life they are going to be damaged.

I think you've grasped the general point about the effectiveness of parenting, that is, beyond a certain baseline it doesn't matter. Where you're off is just where that baseline is; it is far more minimal than you likely think.

@T:

"I believe that your personality is 70% genetic, 20% based on your role within your peer group, and 10% based on parenting quality."

I'd say you're wrong, but what you've stated is scientifically meaningless.

You can't declare what percentage *any given individual's* behavioral make-up is due to X factor or Y factor, any more than you can say that the area of a rectangle is x% due to its width and y% due to its length; it's a meaningless concept. You can only determine what percentage of the *variance* among a group is due to genetic or environmental forces.

"[HS: Personality and behavior are not the same thing.]"

True, but up to a point.

"Whether someone is extroverted or introverted is strongly influenced by genetics, but whether someone routinely gets drunk until they vomit and has frequent casual sex (Jersey Shore behaviors) is very much a matter of values.]"

You're flat out wrong here. The evidence clearly shows that ALL behavioral traits are heritable, including what you've described: http://blogs.discovermagazine.com/gnxp/2012/06/heritability-of-behavioral-traits/

In fact, only traits which patently depend on *content*, such as what language you speak, with what religion you belong, or with what political party you identify aren't really appreciably heritable. ALL of the rest show some genetic influence.

There isn't a dividing line between personality and values, for indeed, the latter are expressions of the former.

You may believe this because *values* (and behavioral traits for that matter, including personality) have changed over time. This doesn't contradict heritability, because obvious *phenotypes* aren't just dependent on *genotypes* but also the *environment in which they're expressed.* If the environment changes the *phenotype* may change even if genes do not.

@asdf:

"Most of the tiger cubs I knew were video game addicts. This is an especially big problem once they get to college."

Yet, is their success seriously impacted by this in the long run?

"Studies show parental effects are small"

In most of the world parents determine their children's religion. I suspect your religion affects both how you view the world and how you act in it.

In the UK the children of Sikhs tend to do better educationally and materially than the children of Hindus or Muslims. The discrepancy with Muslims is not surprising, and maybe the (smaller) discrepancy with Hindus fits with some HBD explanation. But maybe there''s something about Sikhism that matters. Or maybe being part of a religious minority of a minority like Sikhism generates strong mutual self-help.

'As I said before, I am an educational nihilist, and consider the SAT to be important psychometric instrument, not because it predicts academic outcomes by being g-loaded, but simply because it is a good measure of g, and that is also valued outside of an academic setting.'

Uh ok, so in other words you wanted to talk about something other than teacher performance. That's fine, but it doesn't serve as an answer to how we can better measure teacher performance.

As far as the SAT, I'll just say that it's no longer a particularly good measure of g, according to the high intelligence societies. Further, 'g' in isolation isn't the only good measure of social and/or academic success.

'How the fuck is the department of education going to measure teaching good values?'

Conduct of children in the class? Number of assignments completed? Number of tardies? Seems pretty easy to me. However, even if it's more difficult---what's your point? We know the current method is almost useless at measuring teacher performance. Saying 'well it is what it is' isn't a policy solution.

'Of course What-Ever-It-Takes disproportionately filters to NAM's themselves, such as the Ward Boss being quoted.'

I agree that the state should devote more resources to NAM schools. I just believe that most of the extra resources should go to teaching values. As long as the relativist nonsense continues, getting that curriculum in public school is going to be difficult.

However, public schools teaching values is more likely than any hint of eugenics. So...

JayMan,

I disagree with you because the data you site shows that peer groups have a large effect on a child. And it's the parents responsibility to manage the child's peer group.

See my earlier comment:
" Studies show parental effects are small, but peer groups effects are large (maybe approaching 50%). However, selecting a good peer group for your kids is part of being a good parent (you largely control their peers, especially when young). So part of that peer group effect ought to be considered a parent effect. It's just that choosing the right school, neighboorhood, and activity partners for your kids matters a lot more then curfew hours, museum trips, or any other such nonsense."

Jayman,

"Yet, is their success seriously impacted by this in the long run?"

Yes. They tend to end up pretty mediocore for their 'g' level. Especially in the social arena.

@asdf:

"I disagree with you because the data you site shows that peer groups have a large effect on a child. And it's the parents responsibility to manage the child's peer group"

Exactly how large is unclear. It's unlikely that peers account for all of the 50% "unique environment" share of the variance. A good portion of that is likely due to developmental noise (http://jaymans.wordpress.com/2012/07/17/about-developmental-noise/ ). We do have evidence for some peer effects, particularly with language and self-esteem, and we do have some weaker evidence for others like smoking or delinquency.

But in any case, for the average parent, how different are the peer groups you are able to choose from going to be? Most parents are restricted by income on where they are able to live, and the biggest variables are captured quite well by Half Sigma's categories; that is, how NAM, how prole, or how middle class/SWPL/upper class the area is. Peer group selection likely doesn't show up in the shared environment term (which it would if parental selection of peer groups was a big factor) for this reason—the range of peer groups most parents get to choose from is restricted.

"Whether someone is extroverted or introverted is strongly influenced by genetics, but whether someone routinely gets drunk until they vomit and has frequent casual sex (Jersey Shore behaviors) is very much a matter of values.]"

You're flat out wrong here. The evidence clearly shows that ALL behavioral traits are heritable, including what you've described:"

Extroversion (or the lack thereof) is a *personality* trait.

Between intelligence, personality, and behavior, behavior is the most malleable. Personality can also be tweaked a bit, but not nearly as much as behavior. Intelligence is the trait which is most fixed although there are ways to prevent cognitive decline by using supplements such as Alpha GPC or CDP Choline. It's also possible that eating a high fat diet while pregnant and breast feeding newborns could slightly improve IQ because the brain largely consists of fat* and because human breast milk contains Alpha GPC.

* Eating high fat and very low carb diets has been shown to be effective at controlling epileptic seizures

"Asians really need a tightly structured environment to be successful. Their own history is proof of that from belief systems that demand conformity and obedience, to emperor worship, to modern day Tiger moms. Asians need a demanding superior to yell at them".

Most Asians would have their lives wasted if they didn't have any authority hovering their shoulders. Their core weakness is their lack of creative and inquisitive thinking, and a need for comformity. Whites are able to demonstrate productive genius ability regardless of parenting.

"It’s good news that this is happening because it means we are moving closer to the day when the elite will finally admit that black children are less genetically capable of doing well on g-loaded tests compared to white and Asian children.

In other news about g-loaded tests, SAT verbal scores are down again. The downward trend has been going on for decades. The Flynn Effect has no effect on SAT verbal scores."

Should the elite finally throws in the towel on social intervention, the term HBDers need to use to advance a white America demographic policy to drive up the percentage of whites in the population are the terms "Darwinian/evolutionary compatibility" and "Darwinian/evolutionary incompatibility".

Darwinian compatibility means that some races are more cognitively adapted for certain political environments than others because the different races underwent different evolutionary pressures in different political environments.

Consequently, because blacks, non-white Hispanics, and all other low IQ non-whites are incompatible with Western society due to Darwinian selection on cognitive traits such as criminality, low intelligence, poor future time orientation.

And since whites are most adapted for Western social environments, the country should pursue a white America demographic policy that pays non-whites $100,000 per family member to renounce citizenship*.

Citizenship buyouts would be much cheaper than continued wasting of tax dollars and lowering of white living standards trying to raise low-IQ immigrants and their spawn up to some bare minimum standards.

* If Denise Rich and Eduardo Saverin can renounce citizenship for money, there is no moral argument against paying Paco with his six short, bow legged, children to leave California so the brown state can be repopulated with whites.

"I largely agree with your post. Studies show parental effects are small, but peer groups effects are large (maybe approaching 50%). However, selecting a good peer group for your kids is part of being a good parent (you largely control their peers, especially when young). So part of that peer group effect ought to be considered a parent effect. It's just that choosing the right school, neighboorhood, and activity partners for your kids matters a lot more then curfew hours, museum trips, or any other such nonsense."

It would be easier for whites to move to the right neighborhood if we had a non-white emigration policy setup for non-white immigrants and whites only immigration.

As for the non-immigrant black population, we need to limit welfare payments to a single base amount which will not increase if any children are added to a welfare dependent household.

"Are you aware at how frequently you equivocate between a nature and nurture standpoint, sometimes in a single article? In your main article, you're advocating HBD,"

HBD is only ABILITY, not outcome. Culture is how a population's abilities are utilized in a social/cultural/political arrangement.

It's possible for individuals to have great abilities but never employ them.

Likewise, it's possible for a talented population group to underperform it's underlying HBD abilities if their societies policies are not suitable for their traits. Culture/Social policy is why Communist East Germany and North Korea underperform(ed) West Germany and South Korea despite being genetically identical to their neighbors.

HBD's point on social policy should NOT be that social policy does not matter.

HBD should say that in order for certain social policies to work, a population must have a well suited set of cognitive characteristics if any cultural policy can be effective.

Since certain races in particular are maladapted to the Western environment because their evolved cogntitive traits, HBDs point about social policy is that the maladapted races are not fit for Western society, the maladapted races are incompatible with white Western society, and that whites should give up on social policies that try to make NAMs try to fit into an advanced society they are not fit for from a Darwinian perspective.

"[HS: They get excellent grades, and seldom get arrested for public intoxication or marijuana possession, so Tiger parenting does have results.]"

College work is generally not a pure test of g.

Unless someone's studying higher level math or cutting edge science, rote memorization and constant practicing is sufficient to get a degree, assuming you have a minimal threshold of intelligence for your major.

"Academic performance is measured by scores on g-loaded tests."

College tests are not pure tests of g. The academic test which correlated the strongest with g was the pre-2005 verbal SAT with a correlation of 0.8. The math section correlated with g at only 0.7, which goes along with my theory that mathematics doesn't become purely based on g unless you are pursuing higher order mathematics.

Most other college exam work correlates with g at less than 0.7, unless, again, if the coursework is very abstract math or science.

Darwinian incompatibility on parade:

Howard Stern Exposes Dumb Obama Supporters 2012

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gpv0lPz-pd4

JayMan,

As someone that came from a prolish background with parents that had upper middle class wishes for their kids I can say their efforts made a significant difference. They got a house in the best school district they could (making other sacrifices). They made sure I got into the gifted programs, went to smart kid summer camp, and hung out with the smart kids. Few people from my class growing up did this, even those with high IQ. I knew a few kids I grew up with as smart as me that ended up in drugs and other things, mostly because their parents didn't care and they hung out with the proles around them.

@asdf: If I may interject:

I can relate to your story in the sense that my parents also encouraged me against all odds (low income, bullying in J.H.S., growing up (and indeed, still living) in a poor nabe, etc.); I also got into gifted programs, was the only boy in my "gifted" J.H.S. class to make it into a specialized science high school (Brooklyn Tech) and now have a M.E. degree.

However, I think the point JayMan is trying to drive home is that if parents are unable to find "suitable" peers for their children, they've little choice but to make do with the cards they're dealt (i.e. make the best of a "bad" situation); the problem is, it's very hard to make the best of such "bad" situations because of their detriment to higher-IQ cats. Consequently, these adverse peer effects can add up. The parents that don't care, as you say, could care less about such exposure (i.e. leaving children at risk); in that sense I agree with what you're saying also. Parental guidance is important, but peer interactions are *more* so, it seems...

Nelson,

I was very similair. Had my parents not helped me in getting into a charter high school I think I would have ended up on drugs or had lots of other problems at my normal high school (as happened to my very similair best friend). My peer group (smart charter schools kids) was entirely a result of my parents.

" However, selecting a good peer group for your kids is part of being a good parent (you largely control their peers, especially when young)."

This is not what I am talking about when I talk about role WITHIN the peer group. I lump any attempt to determine the child's peer group under parenting. I think that the role WITHIN the peer group is more important than the actual peer group. For example if you are the leader of one peer group it will be similar developmentally to being the leader of another peer group, regardless of the quality of that peer group. Likewise if you are the sidekick, the scapegoat, the chump, or whatever other roles there are.

Humans naturally specialize and carve out niches within their peer groups. To a large extent these niches will be similar in every peer group.

asdf,

I don't know if I would have a similar story. As for me, I am extremely introverted (and it is difficult for me to participate in social exchanges, as most of my conversations with others are on abstract topics where I either challenge my interlocutors arguments, add some relevant or tangential comments or interjections, or go on a verbose exposition on my position -- I could almost never talk about or express interest in popular culture, besides baseball, or about people's relationships or personal lives.) I don't know if I could pick up prole values or upper-middle class values based on my reading, but I have no prole tastes nor any positive consumerist or careerist aspirations, only having the negative preference of merely not wanting to be a prole or engaging in manual labor.

I went to a relatively mediocre college (by Half Sigma standards), but I tend not to be affected by others' values due to my introverted nature -- I am more influenced by what I read. If I were extrovert and went to a "NAM-infested" school, I wonder how that would influence my behavior.


But I fucked up on the SAT, and interpreted the result as an authoritative proclamation that I lacked intelligence. (I did not try to excuse myself by noting I sleep deprived and anxious, and that could realistically shave off a standard deviation from my true score). In general, it would seem that the SAT accurately assesses on innate mental ability, and it would not seem credible to present myself an exception to the SAT's ex cathedra ability to assess one's aptitude.


I guess the number of people who have severely depressed scores like mine are more rare than those who can score => 1450. But I fucked up, and it affected my perception and self-esteem adversely for years, as I thought I only had memory as a cognitive ability. I initially did well in college, getting a 3.8 in my first year, but I even regarded my "success" as a trivial accomplishment that I had little appreciation for, since it only indicated that I was flourishing in an uncompetitive, mildly challenging academic milieu. I mostly withheld effort after my first year, except when I wanted to get the class high on examinations.

Having the right values and peer group would not redeem one for committing the mortal sin of fucking up on the SAT.

'Having the right values and peer group would not redeem one for committing the mortal sin of fucking up on the SAT.'

Oh geez, boo hoo. Millions upon millions of people have to live with SAT scores that are below what they expect or want. Having the right values helps people deal with disappointment. And to be honest, having the right values builds character.

Your character is more important for overall life success than g. People prefer to work with and be around people they trust rather than people they believe are smart.

"Your character is more important for overall life success than g. People prefer to work with and be around people they trust rather than people they believe are smart. "

No, you still need high SAT scores (and social connections and personality) in order to get into the E3 class. (Nevertheless, I believe high SAT scores are more important than "g" itself, since I do not think that E3 work is cognitively demanding, but one would still need to signal high intelligence.) Even if I had the test scores, I don't have the personality traits to get into investment banking. But it would seem you need a > 1400 in order to be an investment banker or get into BigLaw. I wanted to be a scientist, but I was disenchanted, partly due to my insecurities emanating from my SAT score, and also my negative perception of the career prospects of graduate students and post-docs. asdf said he met a James Holmes-like figure with a PhD who had to work 60 hour weeks for little pay.

"Millions upon millions of people have to live with SAT scores that are below what they expect or want. Having the right values helps people deal with disappointment. And to be honest, having the right values builds character."

Most people can live with those low SAT scores, simply because they lack the "g" to appreciate the importance of "g"; it is like the Dunning-Krugar effect. Those people do not read The Bell Curve, Arthur Jensen, or Linda Gottfredson. In my anomalous case, I was a mid 1400 with a score in the 1200s; I had the ability to understand the role of "g" in cognitively demanding tasks and comprehend the psychometrics literature, but I underestimated my intellectual potential because of my results on the SAT. Most people who have 1200s are real 1200s; only a small proportion of 1200s are highly neurotic*, unconscientious freaks who take the SAT sleep-deprived and are adversely affected by test anxiety.

*I am cyclothymic and experience a few hours of mild, torpid apathy, but the episodes are mostly environmentally triggered. Also, I experience immense anxiety, even in low-pressure situations.

"Oh geez, boo hoo. "

Do not glibly dismiss my plight, even if it does sound (no wait, it is) pathetic. The detrimental impact of the scores are indeed real and traumatic, especially on an insecure and emotionally fragile and labile person; I experienced it myself.

Essentially, I agree with asdf:

"Academic performance is measured by scores on g-loaded tests. This is what most people use to evaluate where a school/teacher is "good" or not. If you taught great values but it didn't show up in g-loaded tests people would consider you a failure."

He is saying that performance on g-loaded tests (probably more than "g" itself) trumps values. Unfortunately, g cannot be taught, and this would mean that parents and educators are largely otiose.

Unfortunately, I don't think that HBD will ever be consciously accepted. The problem is that too many women and NAMs are taking up the social sciences and receiving master's degrees in education. They'll use their status to twist the research and reject anything that implies that NAMs are mentally incapable. They are truly delusional and more than willing to hold the rest of the society back so that NAMs can catch up.

one word ... Phenotype

Baltasar Gracian- "Every fool stands convinced, and everyone convinced is a fool."

Oh please, now you're saying it takes an above average level of 'g' to appreciate fucking up on the SAT? No, all it takes is VALUING higher education and all significant catalysts thereof. It's easy to appreciate the fact that 'g' is very important. Even a simpleton can comprehend the previous sentence and combine it with "and the SAT and other academic tests measure g." The reason many reject it is because of their values, not their lack of possible comprehension.

And yes I have no choice but to dismiss your plight. The sheer amount of real shit people have to deal with in life -on top of- disappointing themselves through testing scores requires me too.

How do you even know if you're a 'real' 1400?

As far as E3 goes, you only need to pass a MINIMUM threshold of g/scores. After that, g is way less important than other factors. And again, it's not as important in the SAT itself as it once was.

"How do you even know if you're a 'real' 1400? "

I took the GRE, a test less appreciated by society, and got a respectable score.

There is also evidence that sleep deprivation and anxiety negatively affect cognitive function and can handicap one from doing well.

'I took the GRE, a test less appreciated by society, and got a respectable score.'

Okay, the GRE is no longer correlated much with g either. So, honestly, you could have learned more equations/formulas/academic skills and done better.

Uh, yes there is evidence of both sleep deprivation and anxiety negatively affecting test performance. However, you'd have to be a huge outlier for the effects on you to cover a spread of ~200 points on the SAT.

None of what I've said is an insult to your intelligence or 'g,' either. People tend to value the numbers themselves, rather than the actual use of the numbers. Once you reach an IQ of 115-120, very few fields of study are beyond your ability to understand.

@ Black_Rose

I appreciate your insights and putting yourself on the line for the sake of discussion. As a fellow underachiever I can relate.

There are some basic misconceptions going around here (as usual) that I will address in one fell swoop:

First of all, I will say that, just like Greg Cochran's and Henry Harpending's The 10,000 Year Explosion and Steven Pinker's The Blank Slate, Judith Rich Harris's books, particularly her more recent book, No Two Alike, are required reading.

asdf and others have mentioned the selection of a peer group and its importance to determining your child's outcome. While peers are important, and are a cornerstone of Judith Rich Harris's theory, one must keep in mind methodological limitations involved in granting peers too much influence. This is most important because one's association with a peer group is a very much matter of *self* selection. In asdf's case, that his parents decided to find a different peer group for him (i.e., a different place to live) says that there was something *different* about his parents—and hence, something different about him. Even further, once within a peer group, the "circle" you choose to run with will be because of shared values (i.e., shared behavioral traits, since many here seem to be drawing some of sort of false distinction between the two). It doesn't even matter if one has these values due to genetic or non-genetic (e.g., developmental noise) forces, belying any attempt at measuring peer effects; we don't know if children in a social circle are similar because they influenced each other or if they came to be in a social circle because they were similar to begin with.

As for *how* peers putatively influence us, Judith Rich Harris's theory proposes through two distinct mechanisms. The first is through a conformity module—what makes us want to be like other people in our group. This is likely the primary way we absorb culture (over and beyond what we possess genetically).

The second is through a *competition* module—one that seeks to make us better than everyone else. Since few if any of us can be the best at everything, Harris proposes we seek to excel where we have a comparative advantage. This is the niche-filling that T mentioned. This is where self-esteem comes in, it is very much about one's comparative advantage or lack there of. However, how this plays out is rather random (indeed, this was Harris's explanation for how identical twins raised together end up so different), again belying parental intervention.

The general advice people should take away when considering how parents can select the best group for their children is basically two fold, based on the above:

1. Find peers that will socialize children with the best "values" (to use that word again). In general, this means avoiding "proles" and for the most part "NAMs". This is primarily both to protect them from violence and bullying (more common in those areas) and to limit the negative influence of these peers for those on the fence (since some people are naturally more impressionable and comformist than others; if you've got one of these kids, you probably need to worry about peer values).

2. Make sure that your children will have a comparative advantage against their peers. This is why going to more "elite" areas isn't necessarily a good idea. You don't want your kid to be the dumbest one of the group (or the shortest, or the ugliest, or the heaviest, or the least athletically gifted etc...).

On top of these I would add that, as Harris advises, major visible abnormalities should be corrected if at all possible (and don't give your kid a messed up name).

Overall, if you and your spouse are decent people and you find a semi-decent place to live, you have done pretty as much as you can typically do.

@Black_Rose:

"Once you reach an IQ of 115-120, very few fields of study are beyond your ability to understand."

You're not going to be a good physicist with an IQ of 120...

'You're not going to be a good physicist with an IQ of 120...'

Richard Feynman said that his High School IQ tests showed him as having an IQ of 124. Unless you can give me solid evidence that this isn't the case (no, I don't mean speculative "high IQ people downplay their intelligence" or "his verbal probably weighed him down" evidence), I see no reason to believe it's false.

So, if one of the greatest physicists ever had an IQ not even 1/3 SD above 120, how is it impossible to be a merely 'good' physicist with that IQ?

Further, even if I were to concede that 'physics' was just outside the scope of a 115-120 IQ individual's understanding, it doesn't harm the initial point: very -few- fields of study are beyond your ability to understand. Physics/higher level mathematics do not comprise many of the fields an individual can pursue for middle, upper-middle, and even upper class success.

[HS: I don't believe Feynman. You don't get accepted to and excel at MIT and Princeton by only having an IQ of 124. Some really smart people like to PRETEND they aren't that smart because it make them feel better about themselves.

Nevertheless, for the vast majority of regular white-collar jobs, including medical doctors and lawyers, you can do the job with an IQ of 115-120. You probably won't be the best, but getting promoted is more about shmoozing and politics than being the best.

'I don't believe Feynman. You don't get accepted to and excel at MIT and Princeton by only having an IQ of 124. Some really smart people like to PRETEND they aren't that smart because it make them feel better about themselves.'

He applied to Columbia and was rejected. The SAT, in 1936, didn't even have a mathematics section. Did MIT even require the SAT, or any formal psychometric-styled testing in 1936? The rise of merit-based testing was after 1950; so it's quite possible his competition were ~120 IQ legacy admits. In which case, through hard work, excelling should have been no problem. While Feynman did absolutely destroy the entrance exams for graduate level math/physics, he did abysmally on the more verbal sections. Were these exams g-loaded?

But hey, let's just also assume Feynman had an IQ of 140-160...that still proves nothing. There is a wide gulf between a 'good' physicist and one of the greatest physicists of all time. I don't think it's unreasonable to presume that, if 'one of the greatest of all time' has an IQ around 160, that 2SD separate a normal reasonably competent physicist and the very greatest. A world-class, but not quite 'all-time' physicist is probably 1SD behind.

'you can do the job with an IQ of 115-120. You probably won't be the best, but getting promoted is more about shmoozing and politics than being the best.'

Yes, I agree. Although, I'd put less pejorative labels on the process than 'schmoozing and politics.' I'd say it's more about demonstrating character. Part of demonstrating good character is poise, or the ability to react to negative social situations with grace. People hate politicians for being 'fake,' but social situations require discretion. People who complain about 'fakeness' tend to be individuals with low social skills who can't discern the actual meaning of social signals.

For example, Low social skill X empties his heart and soul to high social skill Y. Y offers a very brief, curt answer; X continues pouring his heart and soul out to Y. Y eventually stops responding or starts inventing excuses to avoid X. X eventually (far too late) figures out that Y had no interest in discussing X's problems. X complains that Y is fake.

In reality, X cannot process social signals and needs to be told exactly how people feel. There is no use for this type of person in upper management. Social rules naturally develop to preserve face and dignity, which is why everything is so indirect. People who can't understand this simply shouldn't be paid for interfacing.

i see the typical hodge podge of ill-informed yet confidently stupid declarations in the comment section.

asians are not biologically incapable of revolutionary invention. the west has only been ascendant for the past 500 years. before that most westerners lived for millenia in lice-infested warrens, wiping their greasy fingers on their thighs while squatting around cooking fires. i doubt that looking at a german in 300CE would inspire much confidence that his stock would one day produce a gauss and a leibniz.

besides, how many PRLs and Nature articles have any of you schmoes published? any theorems or patents to your names? i have found it to be an iron law that tribal chest pounding is inversely proportional to actual achievement.

@JayMan: Let me see if I understand you clearly on peer effects:

So the extent that parents influence this is only insofar as their ability (or lack thereof) to find a nabe with "good" peers; then the rest is some combination of the children's self-selection into groups, values (behavioral/personality traits), bio/genetic factors, and developmental noise. So then a point of interest is how much of the variance does dev. noise explain and whether this moderates (or even attenuates) the peer effect. Specifically:

"It doesn't even matter if one has these values due to genetic or non-genetic (e.g., developmental noise) forces, belying any attempt at measuring peer effects; we don't know if children in a social circle are similar because they influenced each other or if they came to be in a social circle because they were similar to begin with."

I'm thinking a longitudinal study of some sort (combined with further research on dev. noise) could answer this question (or at least clear some things up); I'm guessing that peer effects will be stronger in the first scenario ("because they influenced each other") and dev. noise and other innate factors stronger in the second ("they were similar to begin with").

"Uh, yes there is evidence of both sleep deprivation and anxiety negatively affecting test performance. However, you'd have to be a huge outlier for the effects on you to cover a spread of ~200 points on the SAT."

Yes, I presented myself as an outlier, and I am extremely neurotic, especially in situations when I experience moderate depress under novel stressors. I often do not have a high degree of self-efficacy and imagine myself making numerous errors while having extremely high standards.

"Oh please, now you're saying it takes an above average level of 'g' to appreciate fucking up on the SAT? No, all it takes is VALUING higher education and all significant catalysts thereof. It's easy to appreciate the fact that 'g' is very important. Even a simpleton can comprehend the previous sentence and combine it with "and the SAT and other academic tests measure g." The reason many reject it is because of their values, not their lack of possible comprehension. "

I could understand who most people believe that the SAT measures some form of intelligence -- an intelligence that is often circumscribed with proficiency in academic tasks such as competency in exams and comprehending academic literature, but with no "real world" utility -- but it is unlikely that they can appreciate that it measures "g", the general intelligence factor, which is correlated positively with all cognitive skills. I do think it takes a relatively high "g" to understand "g" since it is an abstract, statistical construct derived from the intercorrelations from a battery of cognitive tests, not something that can be palpably perceived through casual observation (but nevertheless has functional correlations with performance on elementary cognitive tasks such as reaction time and biological variables such as brain size). The general nature of "g" means that it exerts pervasive influence throughout life since it is not merely constricted in the academic domain, and lower "g" people fail to understand this.


"And yes I have no choice but to dismiss your plight. The sheer amount of real shit people have to deal with in life -on top of- disappointing themselves through testing scores requires me too. "

I am not trying to arouse any pity or appear mawkish; I am merely trying to point out how it detrimentally affected my self-perception. I remember being depressed, so I downloaded a lot of Pokemon episodes (mostly the first season) watched them for hours during college so I can experiencing living in Ash Ketchum's world in an attempt to relive the perceived innocence and nostalgia of my childhood. (I didn't watch much Pokemon when I was an adolescent since I am often disinterested in popular fads, but the show still has some cultural and artistic merit.) My desire to experience childhood again occurred after I read The Bell Curve and supplementary work about psychometric g and HBD from authors such as Steve Sailer, Linda Gottfredson, JP Rushton, Arthur Jensen, and Richard Lynn. In the alternative reality of the Pokemon universe, Ash has no adult responsibility or prejudices, and he most certainly doesn't have to face any "real shit", aside from the comical incompetence of Team Rocket.

"asians are not biologically incapable of revolutionary invention. the west has only been ascendant for the past 500 years."

Ah, more excuses for Asia's failure to get ahead of the West.

Asia is the landmass of the future and always will be.

Have you ever heard of Greece and Rome? Apparently not...

For your instruction, the West has been ahead of revolutionary change since ancient Greece. The West only fell behind China during the Dark Ages and beginning of the Medieval Ages because of Barbarian invasions from the Mongols, Huns, and the Muslim invasions of Spain and fall of Byzantium. And even during this period, there were areas of Europe that were ahead of Asia such as Northern Italy. Venetian merchants in the 10th - 11th centuries invented accounting.

"i doubt that looking at a german in 300CE would inspire much confidence that his stock would one day produce a gauss and a leibniz."

If, as you incorrectly claim, East Asians were more advanced than Europeans up till the past 500 years, then they've proven they are incapable of producing genius and innovation because if they were wealthier and more sophisticated than pre-16th century Europeans, then their prosperous social environment should facilitated the genius the same way prosperity facilitated genius in Renaissance Italy.

If East Asians couldn't produce a Gauss or Liebniz (or a Beethoven, or Archimedes, or Bernini) when they were, according to you, more advanced than Europeans, then we can conclude Asians are inherently incapable of producing genius.

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