Archive for July 10th, 2014

Bell-Curve of the Apes

chimp

Another outrageous study completely overlooks the problem of stereotype threat.

Hopkins et al conclude (un-shockingly):

Finally, from an evolutionary standpoint, the results reported here suggest that genetic factors play a significant role in determining individual variation in cognitive abilities, particularly for spatial cognition and communication skills. Presumably, these attributes would have conferred advantages to some individuals, perhaps in terms of enhanced foraging skills or increased social skills, leading to increased opportunities for access to food or mating … These individuals would have then potentially had increased survival and fitness, traits that would have become increasingly selected upon during primate evolution, as has been postulated by a number of theorists, going all the way back to Darwin …

(Thanks to Greg for the link.)

July 10, 2014admin 12 Comments »
FILED UNDER :Discriminations
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Greer

Anyone who isn’t yet reading The Archdruid Report really ought to be. John Michael Greer is quite simply one of the most brilliant writers in existence, and even when he’s wrong, he’s importantly wrong. His perspective is coherent, learned, and uncaged by the assumptions of progressivism. Above all, his understanding of what it means to find history informative is unsurpassed. (Over at the Other Place, there’s an unfinished Greer series that badly requires attention, with the first three installments here, here, and here.)

When escalated to the extreme, the progressive conclusion is that history can teach us nothing. Innovation is by its very nature unprecedented, and insofar as it manifests improvement, it humbles its precursors. The past is the rude domicile of ignorant barbarity. Insofar as the present still bears its traces, as shameful stigmata, they are mere remains that still have to be overcome. At the limit, the concept of Singularity — a horizon at which all anticipatory knowledge is annulled — seals the progressive intuition.

In its abstract theoretical core, at least, Greer’s Druidic counter-history is radically reactionary (far more unambiguously so than NRx). Its model of time is entirely cyclical, such that past and future are perfectly neutral between ascent and decline. Every attempt to install a gradient of improvement in the dimension of historical time is broken upon the great wheels, which balance every rise with a fall, dissolving innovation in precedent. Novelty is hubristic illusion (an exaggerated correction, in the opinion of this blog).

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July 10, 2014admin 37 Comments »
FILED UNDER :History
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