Quote note (#160)

A simple, utterly crucial fact:

Some people are smarter than others. It seems like a straightforward truth, and one that should lend itself to scientific investigation. But those who try to study intelligence, at least in the West, find themselves lost in a political minefield.

A culture that is scared by the very thought of intelligence has already dug its own grave.

April 21, 2015admin 58 Comments »
FILED UNDER :Discriminations

TAGGED WITH : , , , , ,

58 Responses to this entry

  • Quote note (#160) | Neoreactive Says:

    […] Quote note (#160) […]

    Posted on April 21st, 2015 at 9:20 am Reply | Quote
  • Neocolonial Says:

    Coming to terms with being smarter than everybody else takes some time in our culture. The web is a big place and so I have found a place in the scheme of things, but still, for much of growing up the difference was stark. The joy at finding people sharing thoughts I would not have thought at my level of IQ is remarkable. Yet it remains rare and treasured.

    It is straightforward, and yet like so many truths that we hold self evident, it is also not to be mentioned, nor made much of. Yet it doesn’t need to be — everyone knows implicitly. Like chickens in a pen, pecking order is established quickly and efficiently. And then said nothing of.

    How much would change if this were not the case? Would we tend more towards 19th century England, where eccentrics (IQ165+) were treasured, accommodated, and translated from by the merely highly intelligent (IG145+) to provide societally transformative contributions?

    Greatness in intelligence is sparse, to be treasured, cultivated and accommodated.

    [Reply]

    Dark Psy-Ops Reply:

    Bravo! Well said sir! A good take on the matter, succinct and thorough! A gentle homage to the sad frustrations of the highly intelligent in our bell-curved society, where the majority think no more of intelligence than they think at all, which is none.

    A prison guard once said to me regarding aboriginal prisoners that ‘you can’t tell them how stupid they are”, and isn’t that a great truth, as heard from an ordinary woman? ‘Stupider the better’ is her other theory, and she applies it to criminals and blacks. A woman who votes labour.

    Meanwhile even the Cathedral noticed something and has adopted the ‘giftedness’ model, which describes a certain astonishing capacity of rare individuals, to complement the ‘different abilities’ model, which describes the equally valuable qualities distributed to all homo sapiens everywhere.

    Basically though it’s a terrible faux-pas to talk about intelligence, and especially not too marvel at the insurmountable gulf between minds and men. A rich intellect is a golden goose, and those who share it even mildly, if only through study of the elect, know it is a potentially revolutionizing force, to be unleashed at all costs. Soon the science will prove it, and then improve it. Limitless horizons if we’re smart enough.

    [Reply]

    E. Antony Gray (@RiverC) Reply:

    Be cautious not to be caught up in mere cleverness; Imagine a man who figures out the solution to a puzzle only to find it is the trigger for a trap.

    The argument between tech-comm and the other branches often is about traps like this: take for example the young man who, working at a factory, discovers a way to make his work much easier. In doing so, he accidentally eliminates his job and his source of income, since they now no longer need people specialized in doing what he did.

    The way it plays out is the other two warn tech-comm and tech-comm more or less says, “if we’re all going to be replaced by robots, so be it.” This is an honest answer, and it’s not simply a ‘robots are better and cheaper, now no more humans’ thing. It’s in part how humans CREATE the situation, which didn’t exist for 1000’s of years, where robots somehow DO end up being better and cheaper than humans. To avoid automation in that case is just demanding a handicap because — because it wouldn’t be nice to not have it?

    A country with a lot of crappy, expensive laws and obligations attached to each individual is going to create a situation where robots are in effect subsidized. Communist dynamics, which are dysgenic semi-intentionally to try to level society, will likely level at a point where the average human, based on the ‘holy obligations of equality’ is worth much less than the average robot, even if there never is such a thing as ‘artificial intelligence’. Robot goes through the motions; reads facial expressions, takes commands, learns basic handicrafts, can be shut down and turned on as needed; has predictable maintenance costs, etc. The soviet new man IS a robot.

    And the thing about robot rights/revolt? It never happens, the same way that there was never a horse rights revolt.

    Foresight would be to invest in eugenics right now, to ensure that some remnant of capable humans exist to eventually replace the robots. After all, humans WERE more valuable than robots before the communist era, and it wasn’t just for symbolic reasons.

    [Reply]

    Jesse Reply:

    What’s wrong with robots taking over jobs? Unless we have a technological singularity, any job that can be taken over by a robot probably was pretty monotonous to begin with. And if robots can become versatile to take over most manual labor type jobs–manufacturing, farming, construction, mining, transport–then at that point the robots will be able to carry out pretty much all the steps needed to replicate themselves, making both the robots and all the goods they produce very cheap (probably only slightly more than the cost of the raw materials and energy the robots need to produce them). At that point, a welfare state which gives all the out-of-work people a basic income that’s enough to provide for a comfortable middle-class lifestyle would also become very cheap to fund, neutralizing NRx fears that an expanding welfare state will collapse the economy. Meanwhile, people who are able to do jobs that can’t be automated–those requiring more intelligence, creativity, or social skills–will have more wealth, status, and power than the rest of the population, which could itself partially counter any dysgenic effects since they’ll be more attractive as mates (and it’s not clear that there’s actually any trend in the direction of lower-IQ people having more kids even today, see http://jaymans.wordpress.com/2014/07/28/idiocracy-can-wait/ ). And even if that doesn’t work out, if you read the linked article that Land took the quote from in his post above, it also suggests good prospects for using in vitro techniques to artificially select embryos with genes for higher IQ in the not-too-distant future.

    grey enlightenment Reply:

    There is nothing wrong with robots taking over jobs, but history suggests it won’t happen to all jobs. The Luddite fallacy has a good track record of being a fallacy.

    Jesse Reply:

    “There is nothing wrong with robots taking over jobs, but history suggests it won’t happen to all jobs.”

    If you’re responding to my comment “What’s wrong with robots taking over jobs?”, note that I didn’t predict they’d take over “all jobs”, but rather to “most manual labor type jobs” such as those in “manufacturing, farming, construction, mining, transport”, and that this would be sufficient to hugely drive down the cost of all the goods that require such work to manufacture and distribute them, enough so to make obsolete the NRx worries about the unsustainability of funding a welfare state to take care of all the people without jobs.

    E. Antony Gray (@RiverC) Reply:

    Human males who are not useful will kill themselves, either through dissipation or war, perhaps the population problem will solve itself.

    It’s intriguing that you triumphantly announce that robots will make the welfare state possible – it is as though certain lessons cannot possibly be learned except by repeated failures.

    Jesse Reply:

    “Human males who are not useful will kill themselves, either through dissipation or war, perhaps the population problem will solve itself.”

    What is covered by “dissipation” here? There are plenty of historical examples of societies which had classes of aristocrats with inherited wealth and little in the way of important responsibilities, those who aren’t purely hedonistic will still tend to find projects for themselves, artistic pursuits and what-have-you. If a largely automated post-scarcity ecomomy turned large swathes of the population into the equivalent of modern-day trust fund kids, would that be so bad? Of course people are always accusing old money aristocrats of some kind of vague spiritual dissipation/decadence, but in concrete terms they seem to get along OK.

    “It’s intriguing that you triumphantly announce that robots will make the welfare state possible – it is as though certain lessons cannot possibly be learned except by repeated failures.”

    It’s not purely a future speculation, increase in productivity of workers due to automation probably has a lot to do with why existing welfare states seem to function in a reasonably stable way (it would be easier to draw the ‘certain lessons’ you favor if all the welfare states in Western Europe had collapsed economically like Communist states, but that doesn’t seem to have happened). But then modern welfare states don’t guarantee everyone a nice middle-class standard of living, for that you’d need further automation. And do you actually disagree with the idea that complete automation of the manufacture and distribution of a given set of goods would radically drive down the costs of those goods? If not, then it seems your argument against the stability of such a welfare state would have to just be a social one like your comment above about human males, rather than a claim that it would be economically unsustainable even in the absence of any terrible new social dysfunction.

    E. Antony Gray (@RiverC) Reply:

    You must understand that the Enlightenment, in its blooming in the Romantic movement WAS the result of a slew of Trust Fund Kids Trying To Find Their Purpose. These were called Bohemians. A combination of subversive Jews and ‘woe is me, I got to find a purpose in life’ rich kids (reminiscent of many of the Western Jihadis) created the megadeaths of the 20th century (and the kilodeaths that preceded them in the 19th.) These men were also often called ‘Revolutionaries’.

    Now imagine 75% of the population is like this.

    Does this communicate stability, or is one’s reptile brain immediately seized with a prerational dread? Let go of the whig history, we’ll let you have absinthe.

    Jesse Reply:

    “You must understand that the Enlightenment, in its blooming in the Romantic movement WAS the result of a slew of Trust Fund Kids Trying To Find Their Purpose.”

    Sure, but in the 18th and 19th centuries I think all the new intellectual and artistic movements were made up in large proportion of landed gentry and aristocrats, since the rest of the population tended not to be well-educated. Charles Darwin and James Clerk Maxwell were trust fund kids too!

    “A combination of subversive Jews and ‘woe is me, I got to find a purpose in life’ rich kids (reminiscent of many of the Western Jihadis) created the megadeaths of the 20th century (and the kilodeaths that preceded them in the 19th.) These men were also often called ‘Revolutionaries’.”

    Again, any “movement” is likely to have a higher proportion of people from wealthier backgrounds, but it’s certainly not a general rule that megadeath-causing revolutionaries are those who’ve never needed to work for a living–Stalin came from a fairly poor background, Hitler’s family was typically middle-class. And the leaders you’re talking about were only able to build mass movements by getting large numbers of people who were pretty badly off invested in the hope that joining the movement would improve their situation, which wouldn’t be possible in a post-scarcity economy where everyone gets a nice basic income. Like most bohemians outside of revolutionary periods, I’d guess that people who want a sense of meaning and adventure will for the most part turn to weird new spiritual and artistic movements, not to mention psychedelic drugs and whatever new mind-altering technologies exist by then.

    “Does this communicate stability, or is one’s reptile brain immediately seized with a prerational dread?”

    I don’t really see stability as a good unto itself, technological progress is a force for instability after all, and I want as much of that as possible (I could be wrong but I get the impression Nick Land still feels the same on this point, even if he no longer identifies with ‘accelerationism’). Obviously violent communist revolutions would tend to impede the growth of science and technology, but as I’ve said I don’t think that’d be in the cards in a real post-scarcity economy.

    pseudo-chrysostom Reply:

    >I don’t really see stability as a good unto itself, technological progress is a force for instability after all, and I want as much of that as possible

    the easiest way for something to change is for the worse.

    make change easy, it will happen in the easiest ways.

    Jesse Reply:

    “the easiest way for something to change is for the worse.

    make change easy, it will happen in the easiest ways.”

    By “make change easy” do you mean any case where there is no central authority putting limits on change? If so, what about cases when there’s no central authority, but there is some sort of selection principle acting on changes–whether natural selection acting on mutations, or human minds evaluating which new ideas or technologies to adopt/put their money in? For example, why do you think we see continual technological progress, rather than technology getting more primitive with time? It isn’t because there’s some strong central authority forbidding people from believing in new ideas about how to make things that don’t work as well as older ideas, or forbidding them from buying a new device whose design is based on those inferior ideas. That’s not to say there aren’t some situations where authority is needed to counter new bad ideas, usually in situations where people don’t see immediate negative consequences of their ideas, but I was speaking specifically about technological change rather than other types of change.

    pseudo-chrysostom Reply:

    basic themodynamics writ large.

    i think this illustrates a basic disconnect between modes of thought.

    when a conservative says change is bad, hes usually talking about things like society.

    when a prog says change is good, hes usually thinking about very particular and highly instrumental things (like building a better mousetrap), which he then fallaciously analogises to some larger context like a human society.

    Jesse Reply:

    “basic themodynamics writ large.”

    The second law of thermodynamics only applies to closed systems, and in fact some analyses indicates that in the presence of an external source of low-entropy energy (like the photons emitted by the Sun or the potential energy locked in various biomolecules or in oil and coal), the tendency is for systems to self-organize more complex internal structures that take advantage of the energy, converting it to entropy more quickly than would happen without these complex energy-using structures, see http://www.quantamagazine.org/20140122-a-new-physics-theory-of-life/ and http://phys.org/news/2015-02-nanotubes-self-organize-wiggle-evolution-non-equilibrium.html

    “when a prog says change is good, hes usually thinking about very particular and highly instrumental things (like building a better mousetrap)”

    I’m not talking about any specific individual technology, I’m talking about the entire long-term complexification of both the biosphere and human technological civilization. Maybe you think there are social laws that doom civilization to fall apart with too much change, but appealing to thermodynamic laws is misguided, since a more technologically advanced civilization generates more thermodynamic entropy than a less developed one. See the comments by physicist Sean Carroll on the incorrectness of these sorts of loose appeals to thermodynamics in discussions of social evolution at http://www.preposterousuniverse.com/blog/2013/01/29/social-entropy/

    admin Reply:

    Even in open systems, work produces entropy, and systems that can’t dissipate it effectively slide into dysfunction. It doesn’t just radiate itself into space by magic. ‘Self-organization’ is about learning to select it out.

    Jesse Reply:

    “Even in open systems, work produces entropy, and systems that can’t dissipate it effectively slide into dysfunction. It doesn’t just radiate itself into space by magic. ‘Self-organization’ is about learning to select it out.”

    If you’re talking about literal thermodynamic entropy rather than some ill-defined concept of social entropy, then the danger of entropy not being dissipated fast enough by civilization is basically just the danger of global warming (though of course it’s also related to the specific infrared-absorbing properties of CO2, if we got the same amount of power from nuclear or solar than the resulting waste heat would be spontaneously radiated into space as infrared radiation at about the same rate it was produced), something most NRx thinkers tend to dismiss as Cathedral propaganda (even though the Cathedral has mysteriously not caused scientists to develop the same sort of strong consensus on other issues which one would think would be more politically charged, like the question of whether there are innate cognitive differences between men and women, or the question of whether racial IQ differences have any significant genetic basis or are purely environmental). And even if we had some well-defined concept of social entropy, and what exactly it means to “dissipate” it, to get to the full NRx view one would have to present a convincing argument as to why strong top-down leadership is needed to dissipate it, as opposed to more bottom-up self-organization (some sort of memetic selection, perhaps) similar to what’s seen with thermodynamic entropy in the biosphere.

    pseudo-chrysostom Reply:

    your preoccupation with centralization vs no centralization betrays a superficial perspective in this matter.

    the point is very simple, there are alot of potential ‘states’ of civilization, ways of putting its pieces together. but only a small subset of those are actually functional (let alone supernal). further, not only is it not trivial to divine what is more righteous in increasingly transcendent contexts like this, it is the very attempt to do so (so as to effect the change they believe in) by those who really should not be doing so that creates maladaptive ideologies that lead to error.

    the point is that people should stay in their lane, savants, mattoids, and assorted specialists especially. savants overextending themselves outside of the domains of savants is one of the most dangerous intellectual catastrophes there is. consciousness of a teleology is not necessary to serve it.

    point in fact; it would be very well if you focused more on ‘specific individual technology’, and less on ‘the entire long-term complexification of both the biosphere and human technological civilization.’

    for many people, saving civilization means forgetting about it.

    Jesse Reply:

    “your preoccupation with centralization vs no centralization betrays a superficial perspective in this matter.”

    Well, we are having this discussion on an NRx blog, and the need for strong central authority to prevent a slide into chaos is a pretty central one for most NRx thinkers, so that’s why I brought it up.

    “the point is very simple, there are alot of potential ‘states’ of civilization, ways of putting its pieces together. but only a small subset of those are actually functional (let alone supernal). ”

    I don’t know what you mean by “supernal” in this context, but I’ll comment on the other part of this. If you had some way of mathematically enumerating “states”, then just as picking a random string of letters from the set of all possible strings would be overwhelmingly likely to produce a meaningless nonsense string, so too picking a random civilization-state would be overwhelmingly likely to produce an arrangement that would be obviously nonsensical to most people on first glance, like a society where everyone works to produce a set of useless arrangements of materials with no practical or aesthetic value. But there are multiple levels of selection which confine our path through civilization-state-space to a much narrower range of possibilities. One is just ordinary human foresight, which would rule out the vast majority of very obviously flawed states like the one I mentioned, leaving some combination of good states and bad states whose flaws are not quite as obvious. Another is the fact that civilizations don’t usually change by quantum jumps but rather by an accumulation of smaller changes, so changes that begin to have perceivable negative effects may be more likely to be rolled back. And even if there aren’t, there are many somewhat independent cultures and governments in the world, so those that fail to roll back the bad changes may fail in ways that serve as object lessons for other cultures and governments.

    As an analogy, imagine someone argued against Darwinian evolution by saying “The point is very simple, there are a lot of potential DNA sequences, but only a small subset of those are actually functional”. While true, it’s also true that as long as there’s constant selection on new mutations altering the sequence, and the mutation rate isn’t so high that selection can’t keep up, then high-fitness sequences should continue to predominate. I’m not saying it’s obvious that the selection principles on changes to “civilization” are sufficient to keep up with the rate of change and prevent us from dropping out of the functional zone, but it’s also not obvious they aren’t, so your argument here isn’t sufficient.

    Finally, if change in itself is supposed to be dangerous rather than specific types of changes you don’t like, shouldn’t you be a luddite who opposes all technological change? In the long term (decades or centuries) it seems to me that technological changes tend to have more dramatic effects on the structure of society than changes in laws or social mores (besides which I think changes in technology are a large driver of changes in social mores–for a specific example think of the birth control pill, for a broader analysis read Fukuyama’s “The Great Disruption”).

    “point in fact; it would be very well if you focused more on ‘specific individual technology’, and less on ‘the entire long-term complexification of both the biosphere and human technological civilization.’”

    “Very well” if I focused more on this in my arguments here? If so, are you suggesting such a focus would help my argument, or help me see the light about how wrong it is? Or are you just giving me advice about what I should focus on in my life? (FYI I’m not any kind of activist or social reformer in my offline life, I just like discussing these kinds of issues on the internet sometimes)

    pseudo-chrysostom Reply:

    like i said, you dont seem to be grasping the inwardness of it.

    the most stable or probable states of affairs are not necessarily the ones we’ed like the most.

    its alot easier for a pile of rocks to be a pile of rocks than for it to be a statue.

    >so too picking a random civilization-state would be overwhelmingly likely to produce an arrangement that would be obviously nonsensical to most people on first glance

    we are in an obviously nonsensical arrangement right now.

    evidently, ‘ordinary human foresight’ has proved consistently inferior to ordinary human insecurities, thus leftism.

    its good of you incidentally to bring up natural selection, as most civilizations heretofore have also consistently proved to be dysgenic, though our present state of affairs certainly takes the cake on that front.

    >Finally, if change in itself is supposed to be dangerous rather than specific types of changes you don’t like, shouldn’t you be a luddite who opposes all technological change?

    again, superficiality. youre committing a category error by confusing something like a society with something that is more particular, very instrumental, and easily verifiable. a nation is not a sport, or a physics problem, or an engineering project. modes of thought that would be adaptive in one context, are not adaptive in another.

    the straw cons and progs who argue over change vs no change are committing at least two errors. both ignore the human element, that different people are fit for different things, and consequently should have different cognitive strategies. an exhortation against attempting to effect change would be very good *for the people*, because the people should stay out of politics (libertarianism is valuable to the extent that it achieves this goal).

    though being more dynamic or more conservative are less wrong depending on the context, they are not equipped to easily tell the difference, so they reduce such nuances to broad stroking categorical imperatives, the *easiest* way to think.

    and therefore, the easiest and most likely vector for social change.

    >it seems to me that technological changes tend to have more dramatic effects on the structure of society than changes in laws or social mores

    technological advance masks social decay.

    grey enlightenment Reply:

    Meanwhile even the Cathedral noticed something and has adopted the ‘giftedness’ model,

    can someone elaborate on this..sounds interesting

    perhaps America is a uniquely intellectual place. People complain about the dumbing down of America, but other countries are much worse. America’s competitive capitalist and winner-take-all culture rewards high-IQ and punishes mediocrity. The Nordic countries are smart, but it’s not an in-your-face smartness. More like private toiling away

    [Reply]

    Mechanomica Reply:

    Starting in the 1970s (roughly) there was an interest in the US in identifying high-IQ students in the public school systems and deliberately fostering their talents. This came to a peak in the mid-90s. I don’t know much about the origin of these “gifted and talented” programs, but would guess that they were initially recommended out of an interest in bolstering the future economy of the US. The aim was to churn out bright young people who were prepared to take leadership roles in a variety of fields and disciplines.

    Unfortunately (speaking from personal experience as a child enrolled in these programs in the 90s), the same ideologies that permeate American universities were also very much a part of the curriculum. Support for learning about math, technology, and science was minimal in comparison with the social justice angle. To many of my friends and I, the program felt more like a brainwashing academy than anything useful. They clearly sought to make us oversocialized (to use Ted Kaczynski’s parlance) and in most cases were successful in doing so. I chose to drop out and pursue my studies independently.

    Today there seems to be a bigger focus on offering accelerated courses and granting college credit early, as opposed to removing younger children from regular classrooms in order to put them with their intellectual peers full-time. Whether that’s a better or worse approach remains to be seen.

    Posted on April 21st, 2015 at 11:31 am Reply | Quote
  • Miguel Enríque (@PR_NRx) Says:

    Frightened by intelligence, but obsessed with pedagogy and institutional education. Seeing as we haven’t improved our understanding of actual intelligence one iota, we can easily deduce that the whole humongous edifice is devoted solely to propaganda of some sort.

    [Reply]

    Posted on April 21st, 2015 at 12:15 pm Reply | Quote
  • Brett Stevens Says:

    Anything which conflicts with The Narrative — that we are marching forward through history from a primitive past toward Total Equality — must be denied.

    [Reply]

    Posted on April 21st, 2015 at 1:28 pm Reply | Quote
  • John Says:

    If you Nrx guys are so intelligent, why aren’t you all rich?

    Is it really intelligence if all it’s good for is sperging out in internet backwaters?

    [Reply]

    Erik Reply:

    I am rich. You just don’t see the bits of my life where I’m not sperging out in internet backwaters.

    [Reply]

    Hegemonizing Swarm Reply:

    > If you Nrx guys are so intelligent, why aren’t you all rich?

    Non sequitur. There may be a correlation, but not everyone uses their intelligence for the sole purpose of enriching themselves financially – fortunately, otherwise mathematics and theoretical physics would never have taken off, and there would be no computers, let alone an internet to sperge out on. Once one has enough to be comfortable, there are more interesting things in the world than buying the biggest boat.

    [Reply]

    Izak Reply:

    When IQ reaches a certain high level, there’s no longer any correlation between it and monetary or career success. If anything, there may be a negative correlation.

    [Reply]

    grey enlightenment Reply:

    To some extend it could be a valid question in that if I had more money I would be able to pursue this NRx thing with more resources . Part of making money is understanding probability and risk/reward, trying to maximize your finite human capital. Getting rich is less about doing and more about waiting.

    [Reply]

    Erebus Reply:

    I can’t help but disagree.

    I’m rich by any definition of the word, but I need to spend about 16-18 hours a day working, or I start falling behind… My contacts get upset if I’m not responsive, overseeing project management takes time, drafting proposals for new business and patent applications takes a lot of time (there tends to be a significant amount of research involved), I need to make sure that the folks on the payroll aren’t getting sloppy, and so forth. The fact that I’m in a highly technical industry also means that I need to stay up to date & spend at least an hour every day reviewing new research developments and digging into some of the references these new papers cite.
    …So it’s a lot about “doing” and not a whole lot about “waiting” — or, at least, there’s not a lot of waiting in my own industry. I’m just lucky in that I truly enjoy what I do.

    Aside: I don’t pursue investments in real estate, or any sort of passive investment, but the guys I know who’ve made fortunes in real estate also work a hell of a lot! They don’t rest on their laurels, that’s for sure.

    Actually, if I didn’t spend so much time working, and if I were a bit younger, I’d pursue this NRx thing more assiduously. As things stand, I just comment on Xenosystems and read some blogs from the office. No time for more than that.

    Question: How would more financial resources help you pursue this NRx thing? It almost seems irrelevant to me. If I started throwing around money, I think I’d just end up making a fool out of myself.

    [Reply]

    pseudo-chrysostom Reply:

    >Actually, if I didn’t spend so much time working, and if I were a bit younger, I’d pursue this NRx thing more assiduously. As things stand, I just comment on Xenosystems and read some blogs from the office. No time for more than that.

    personally i would say that is a appropriate attitude to take.

    the universe tends to the points of most stability, looking at soviet russia as time whent on, i think they happened upon a good idea by excluding youth from the political process.

    grey enlightenment Reply:

    How would more financial resources help you pursue this NRx thing?

    To take NRX to the next level from a philosophy to a movement will require capital. Blogging and posting will only go so far. Ads to promote NRx, professionally designed websites (like how political websites are done), studio quality podcasts, professionally done books, etc. Whatever is done now, but taken to the next level. NRX doesn’t have an official logo. It needs one. But everyone is too atomized, which is understandable because smart people typically don’t like to conform. But without cohesion progress will be stunted.

    grey enlightenment Reply:

    @John

    and then there is the whole internecine strife between ethno traditionalists vs. techno libertarians, which I don’t ever see being reconciled

    Erebus Reply:

    @grey enlightenment —

    We’re agreed that NRx does need professionally done books. I’ve felt this way for a while, and am working on a little publishing project right now. (Focusing on reprinting old books in new editions, and translating political/philosophical works out of Japanese and other languages into English for the first time.)

    Having said that, I am not sure that NRx should appeal to the masses in any other sort of manner. I am certain that, in any case, it is not ready for such steps right now. NRx hasn’t finished establishing itself as a philosophy. What we’ve got right now is the opposite of the progressive echo-chamber; it’s a sort of cacophony — a profusion of different opinions and various interpretations as to what constitutes NRx. If we’re lucky, the best of these will eventually survive and come to prominence, and the others will fall by the wayside. I realize that that’s a pretty big “if.”

    …Ah, well, I can always fall back on “cockroach reaction.”

    Posted on April 21st, 2015 at 2:06 pm Reply | Quote
  • Lesser Bull Says:

    Some people are wiser than others.
    Some people are *better* than others.

    [Reply]

    E. Antony Gray (@RiverC) Reply:

    Holiness spirals as a way to hide a decline in intelligence or other ability?

    Spengler stirs, and an arm pushes open the coffin.

    He sits up, and spreads his arms, as if to indicate all that surrounds him.

    “DECLINE”, he utters.

    [Reply]

    Lesser Bull Reply:

    Yeah, that’s the Redder Pill that I am hesitating to swallow–that the Cathedral and the Ratchet are just epiphenomena on a tidal wave of congenital decline.

    [Reply]

    E. Antony Gray (@RiverC) Reply:

    There’s a limit to the redness of the pill, in that if you reach the point where no action is possible (i.e. “decline is ultimately irreversible”, or “Christ is coming and will destroy all of this.”) you’ve probably hit a local maximum and gotten stuck somewhere. The JQ is a classic dead-end redpill – as for Spengler, once you totally buy into the cyclical theory, eventually all evidence supports it.

    When all evidence supports your theory, but you’ve not understood everything, go back a little bit first.

    grey enlightenment Reply:

    the left is at war with biological reality . for the left, the progress of Science apparently stops at IQ

    [Reply]

    Thales Reply:

    For the Left, Evolution is conveniently halted at the neck.

    (Yes, the double entendre there was just too sweet to pass up…)

    [Reply]

    Posted on April 21st, 2015 at 2:23 pm Reply | Quote
  • Joseph sans Brothers Says:

    Hah! You guys are a riot. I bet a lot of you even think genetically-engineered high IQ people would have “more freedom” than the dummies too! Oh you poor nrxers are lost without a map. Even the most basic questions here are far, far beyond you. Which figures: anytime I hear something proclaimed as “A Simple Fact” I prepare to have a labyrinth of bullshit dumped on my head, and boy was I right again. But don’t mind me, go on as before: “Rah Rah Rah! It’s A Simple Fact! Rah Rah Rah! It’s A Simple Fact!”

    [Reply]

    pseudo-chrysostom Reply:

    well broadly speaking, ones capacity for agency is indeed essentially a function of ones capacities (for what else is ‘systemic’ [an inversion if ever there was one] white privilege, except a tacit admission of white superiority?).

    of course, it is not exactly calculative aptitude that influences this either.

    [Reply]

    Joseph sans Brothers Reply:

    @Joseph sans Brothers

    Even more broadly speaking, one’s capacities for anything are a function of one’s language and of the system of knowledge and expectations that is imposed upon one. Point being, the way liberal society conceives the function of “intelligence” will dictate that those most aggressively conditioned into fulfilling the functions of the “intelligent” will be the most systematically subjugated to the codes of mercantilist credentialing. Their understanding of “freedom” will be so circumscribed in advance that the term will become — well, scratch that, the term already is quite meaningless.

    [Reply]

    pseudo-chrysostom Reply:

    ah, socially constructed intelligence, how progressive.

    of course it is not without a little irony that we can say the social construction of the real is indeed real in a literal sense from the perspective of the leftly inclined. which is to say, he apprehends primarily through that which he receives from an outside source, a prior tradition, because to grasp such things is already beyond his native ability.

    if he says that the elements of being are equivalent and interchangeable, partly it is because such ideas lend themselves well to those most ancient and persistent set of character flaws of desiring status, yet demurring the fact that their lack of status, success, or ability might have anything to do with them personally, anything that threatens the narcissistic vision of the idealised self. but partly is it also because he quite simply has difficulty drawing meaningful distinctions between things to begin with, making it easier for him to fall prey to such sophism.

    to the constructivist (which is to say, the conditional solipsist), reason is only used so far as to rationalize the winds of social validation, and to the constructivist, this is all very true. it is not for him to create more transcendent values (which are implicit teleologies), or to perceive the skein of future possibility (which is intrinsically related), or in other words, to direct the self, to have agency.

    being a conditional solipsist however, they also have no reservations about projecting their own perspective onto everyone else. and if the conditional solipsist is also good at manipulating symbolic structures someone else created (iow, an autist), they can even devise the most arcane fabrications to justify the same old mindset.

    and thats why universities full of supposedly smart people are always so lefty.

    Joseph sans Brothers Reply:

    Was there a point you trying to make with all that?

    pseudo-chrysostom Reply:

    i was going to just leave it at the first pithy one liner, but the muse struck me and i felt no compunction about dumping it.

    Exfernal Reply:

    You guys are a riot. I bet a lot of you even think genetically-engineered high IQ people would have “more freedom” than the dummies too!

    Well, it would be heritable, for starters. Of course, there is a catch – for sufficiently ‘high IQ people’ there are many activities more interesting that making babies right now.

    [Reply]

    Posted on April 21st, 2015 at 8:47 pm Reply | Quote
  • low income low status low brow juvenile reader Says:

    guys, it’s real easy

    “there’s no such thing as IQ, but, by the way, ours is higher than yours”

    [Reply]

    Posted on April 22nd, 2015 at 12:47 am Reply | Quote
  • SanguineEmpiricist Says:

    The guy who asked why some people aren’t more successful is correct in sentiment, some of the people here are deluded and need to put their money where their mouth is. If reverse engineering society was as simple then you need to invest in the relevant financial products. I have as much of my money and ass where my mouth is and encourage people to do the same.

    I agree with greyenlightenment in broad sentiment, if people had empirical metrics then maybe they just wouldn’t talk so loud.

    [Reply]

    Posted on April 22nd, 2015 at 2:34 am Reply | Quote
  • SanguineEmpiricist Says:

    sigh need to edit in emacs,

    “as much of my money/time/effort as is reasonable for my age” is what i meant

    [Reply]

    Posted on April 22nd, 2015 at 2:35 am Reply | Quote
  • Saul Solex Says:

    people who consider themselves to be highly intelligent often focus on their prowess in certain fields – maths, linguistics, global domination, etc. – while failing to recognise the extent of their stupidity in other respects, as is clear from their inability to grasp the partial nature of their own intelligence.

    [Reply]

    Mechanomica Reply:

    While this is true, I find it helps very little to tell them so. If you are in possession of multiple proficiencies, your efforts are better spent on developing your own projects and/or lending your fuller vision toward the endeavors of the worthier lopsided geniuses.

    High-IQ loudmouths with little else to their credit tend to bring about their own downfall (if they ever rise to begin with, which generally they do not). It’s only irritating to listen to them because their narratives are so clearly untrue. Let the delusion walk itself off a cliff. If its host wakes up in the process and escapes, so much the better.

    On the colder side of things, if someone of this description is too slow to fall and his incompetence is threatening to ruin something important, you’ll find his blind spots make him very easy to neutralize. The most effective way to do this is to provide through your own behavior an example of real competence that others may contrast with the loser’s comparative wankery.

    Be advised that this can be a dangerous game. A pretty story is a powerful intoxicant and people in the grip of such a story will fight very bitterly to maintain it, especially if it is all they have in the way of comfort.

    [Reply]

    SanguineEmpiricist Reply:

    I think you are not grokking actual intelligence correctly, especially when expanded to encompass stanovichian rationality.

    [Reply]

    Posted on April 22nd, 2015 at 11:45 am Reply | Quote
  • Xavi' Says:

    This is why Philosophy is vital, ( another reason Philosophy has all been but attacked or co-opted as a Eurasian frivolity and universality, or in other cases, simply banished to the nether-regions of Academic life )

    Understanding there is difference in cognitive ability, Philosophy not only allows the gifted to govern and manage better, what we have is a mismanagement of the brilliant, or some would say the brilliant are being systematically targeted and hampered, so best to play the part of the fool. Philosophy, a strong Philosophy the individual, not as brilliant, would understand he too has a place, is to live his life, live it well to the best of his ability, and allow the feelings of inadequacy and envy to be set aside.

    We have the inverse currently, where as equality itself has become the pillar governing all thought and deed, despite it being monstrous concept, the morally devoid cannot cope wit the position assigned to them by nature, and through either virtue or strength of character, in a dignified manner simply, live. Hence, we are burdened with countless cycles of the detritus of man. The bright fool attempting to level Civilization, using his gifts and education to facilitate horror, and the dim, uneasy mostly with themselves, competing with other wretches of the earth, through varying periods, to stake claim this decline, their decline is the finality.

    [Reply]

    Posted on April 22nd, 2015 at 10:04 pm Reply | Quote
  • Richard P. Says:

    We will all be seen as lumbering dinasaurs once the keys to selecting genes for intelligence become available to certain selcet groups of people. Political correctness will be the death of peoples thinking exclusively inside the genetic box.

    [Reply]

    Erebus Reply:

    Entirely agreed.

    Speaking of genes, the Chinese are very hard at work on applying genetic modification technologies. What’s particularly interesting is that a Chinese research group just published a paper claiming that their attempts at CRISPR gene-editing in human zygotes had failed due to off-target effects. This may lead to a moratorium on gene editing (on human tissue) in the USA and the EU, at least until the glacially-slow and terrible FDA has a chance to assess all of the risks involved.

    …The thing is, this could be a strategic move by China. It’s very likely that they have positive results that they’re simply choosing not to publish. CRISPR is easy in mice, and it should be trivially easy to perform the same procedures on human embryonic tissue.

    Comment four here hits the nail on the head.

    China is also doing lots of research into high-IQ individuals, and is presumably very hard at work analyzing the genetic basis of IQ. So I don’t think it’ll be “certain select groups of people”, in general, who look upon us as dinosaurs — I think that it’s the Chinese, specifically, who hold the key to this future.

    [Reply]

    Aeroguy Reply:

    I have reason to believe (I know a victim, sure not the best evidence but given history, means, and motive…) the guy’s responsible for MK Ultra are continuing their research using private money inside CONUS with intelligence boosting in mind. I doubt they’d allow themselves to be left behind on this front given as how their moral reservations are on par with the worst sort of psychopath. Universities and ethics panels are hardly the only word on Western research.

    [Reply]

    Erebus Reply:

    I’ll take your word for it — and am not surprised to hear that’s the case. We know what DARPA is working on — as they post (some of?) their solicitations openly — and that, already impressive in its own right, has to be just the tip of the iceberg.

    I wonder about the scale of these projects, though. I believe that these Chinese programs are very large — that there are too many people (and prominent people) involved to keep these programs entirely secret. Or so I’ve heard, anyway. I realize that China’s strategic interests are best-served by talking about how powerful they’re becoming, how cutting-edge their research is — and if they can weaken the strategic position of other nations by sowing disinformation, so much the better. The USG is clearly in a very different position — the administrative/bureaucratic apparatus resembles an unstable territory of warring fiefdoms, and Team MK-Ultra doesn’t want Team FDA and Team State-Dept. to know what it’s up to. (To say nothing of the shrill and hysterical US populace, always hungry for another scandal…)

    Posted on April 25th, 2015 at 4:16 pm Reply | Quote

Leave a comment