Posts Tagged ‘Mind-control’

IQ Crime-Stop

‘Eldritch’ comments at Scott Alexander’s place:

I think the actual argument against IQ is this:
1. Intelligence is a measure of your value as a person in a wide range of situations.
2. IQ supposedly measures intelligence.
3. IQ may not be significantly changeable.
4. Therefore, this test lets you measure the innate aptitude and this value of a person.
5. Therefore, this could be used to prove I am inherently less valuable than other people.
7. Therefore, IQ is wrong.

I’m pretty sure this is the real argument against IQ, and most arguments against it are simply attempts to find arguments that fit this conclusion.

My only significant quibble with this construction concerns point #5, which massively underestimates the predominance of pathological altruism / social terror in the IQ ‘debate’. The possibility that IQ measurements could make other people seem in some awkward way inferior is a far more powerful deterrent than anything it could say about oneself. (The probability that someone is going to say something stupid about IQ has a striking positive correlation with IQ.)

The post itself makes a (wholly superfluous) strong argument for the robust realism of the g concept. If you’re the kind of crime-stopped idiot who needs persuading about it, you’re almost certainly beyond persuasion. The relevant fork in the road has already been passed. Rationalists find it strangely hard to grasp that simple fact. They’re nice that way.

ADDED: Dear Prudence.

August 12, 2014admin 20 Comments »
FILED UNDER :Discriminations


Erik Falkenstein makes a lot of important points in this commentary on Thomas Piketty (via Isegoria). The whole post is highly recommended.

To pick up on just one of Falkenstein’s arguments here, he explains:

Most importantly for [Piketty’s] case is the fact that because marginal taxes, and inheritance taxes, were so high, the rich had a much different incentive to hide income and wealth. He shows marginal income and inheritance tax rates that are the exact inverse of the capital/income ratio of figures, which is part of his argument that raising tax rates would be a good thing: it lowers inequality. Those countries that lowered the marginal tax rates the most saw the biggest increases in higher incomes (p. 509). Perhaps instead of thinking capital went down, it was just reported less to avoid confiscatory taxes? Alan Reynolds notes that many changes to the tax code in the 1980s that explain the rise in reported wealth and income irrespective of the actual change in wealth an income in that decade, and one can imagine all those loopholes and inducements two generations ago when the top tax rates were above 90% (it seems people can no better imagine their grandparents sheltering income than having sex, another generational conceit).

The much-demonized ‘neoliberal’ tax regimes introduced in the 1980s disincentivized capital income concealment. (Falkenstein makes an extended defense of this point.) In consequence, apparent inequality rose rapidly, as such revenues came out of hiding (ἀλήθεια) into public awareness / public finances. The ‘phenomenon’ is an artifact of truth-engineering, as modestly conservative governments sought to coax capital into the open, within a comparatively non-confiscatory fiscal environment.

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July 28, 2014admin 18 Comments »
FILED UNDER :Democracy , Political economy

Quote notes (#98)

A passing comment from Peter Frost, on the changing tides of civilization:

Lab work will probably have to be offshored, not because it’s cheaper to do elsewhere but because the “free world” is no longer the best place for unimpeded scientific inquiry. A Hong Kong team is conducting a large-scale investigation into the genetics of intelligence, and nothing comparable is being done in either North America or Western Europe. Cost isn’t the reason.

July 27, 2014admin 17 Comments »
FILED UNDER :Discriminations
TAGGED WITH : , , , ,

Quote notes (#96)

American higher education is “primed for creative destruction” notes The Futurist:

Student loan debt has tripled in a decade, even while many universities now see no problem in departing from their primary mission of education, and have drifted into a priority of ideological brainwashing and factories of propaganda. Combine all these factors, and you have a generation of young people who may have student debt larger than the mortgage on a median American house (meaning they will not be the first-time home purchasers that the housing market depends on to survive), while having their head filled with indoctrination that carries zero or even negative value in the private sector workforce.

July 24, 2014admin 21 Comments »
FILED UNDER :Political economy
TAGGED WITH : , , , ,

Poe’s Law

Only a few months ago, I had never heard of Poe’s Law. Now it’s a rare day in which it doesn’t crop up several times. Invocations of the Zeitgeist are inherently improbable, but if there were to be a persuasive illustration of the phenomenon, it would be something like this.

According to the succinct Wikipedia entry (already linked), Poe’s Law is less than a decade old. Among it’s precursors, also relatively recent, a 2001 Usenet comment by Alan Morgan most closely anticipates it: “Any sufficiently advanced troll is indistinguishable from a genuine kook.” In other words, between a sincere intellectual position and its satirization, no secure distinction can be made. (There is nothing about this thesis that restricts it to ‘extreme’ opinion, although that is how it is usually understood.)

The latest opportunity for raising this topic is, of course, @Salondotcom. (There’s an entertaining interview with the pranksters behind it here.) The offense of this account, which led to it being suspended by Twitter last week, was clear beyond any reasonable doubt. Quite simply, it was nearly indistinguishable from the original, a fact that has itself been explicitly noted (and tweeted about) innumerable times. Parody Salon slugs, so ludicrously over-the-top that they had @Salondotcom readers in stitches, were funny precisely because they were such plausible mimics of Salon‘s own. Readers were laughing through @Salondotcom, at Salon. This is almost certainly why the account was suspended.

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July 18, 2014admin 20 Comments »
FILED UNDER :Humor , Media
TAGGED WITH : , , , ,

Misbehaving Science

Comedy gold at New Scientist — it really needs to be read to be believed. Kate Douglas reviews Aaron Panofsky’s book Misbehaving Science: Controversy and the development of behavior genetics, rising to a glorious crescendo with a restatement of Lewontin’s Fallacy (without giving any indication of recognizing it). If this book and review are panic symptoms, which seems highly plausible, Neo-Lysenkoism has to be sensing the winter winds of change. In any case, it somehow all went wrong for them:

The founding principles of social responsibility suffered, usurped by a responsibility to the discipline itself and to scientific freedom. And controversy bred controversy as the prospect of achieving notoriety attracted new talent. In short, the field became weak and poorly integrated, with low status, limited funding, and publicity the main currency of academic reward. This, according to Panofsky, is why it is afflicted with “persistent, ungovernable controversy” …

As a guide to what regional Cathedral breakdown looks like, this works quite well.

July 15, 2014admin 11 Comments »
FILED UNDER :Pass the popcorn
TAGGED WITH : , , , ,

Cathedral notes (#1)

To accompany this (which I’m treating as a very valuable work-in-progress [sic]), some initial straggly commentary.

(1) Conceptual genealogists will insist on a link to this, so here it is. There’s a lot of discussion stimulation there. Some other time.

(2) Probably 90% of the ‘Cathedral’ discussion so far — insofar as this has over-spilled the NRx dikes — has consisted of “why don’t we call it the Synagogue?” Tedious as this may be, it’s a crucial question, because it effectively draws the NRx contour. If the cooptation of Judaism by the main cladistic trunk of dynamic modernity is not understood, nothing has been. ‘The Cathedral’ is a term that captures the exclusive insight about which NRx coalesces.

(3) Nydrwracu’s diagram, and Radish’s, are no doubt incomplete, but they are fully adequate to the most decisive point. The Cathedral is an information system — even an ‘intelligence’ system — that is characterized, through supreme irony, by a structural inability to learn. The minimal requirement for any Cathedrogram is that it displays a radical deficiency of significant feedback links to the control core. Every apparatus of information gathering occupies a strictly subordinate position, relative to the sovereign Cathedral layer, which is defined exhaustively by message promotion. Core-Cathedral is a structure of read only memory. It is essentially write-protected. The whole of its power (and also its vulnerability) is inextricable from this feature. It is pure cultural genetics (and zero pragmatics).

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June 27, 2014admin 39 Comments »
FILED UNDER :Neoreaction

Diversitocracy Crisis

It’s not about white people.

June 20, 2014admin 7 Comments »
FILED UNDER :Discriminations

Fnord Prefect

Scott Alexander shows an acute appreciation for Nydwracu’s Fnord hunting (my own was far too cursory). It’s rare to see the innovation of a method (with a purpose), and it’s something more noteworthy than any but the most exceptional idea.

Someone with the requisite technical skills should implement this method in convenient software. As a quick-and-dirty way to excavate real messages, it’s hard to beat.

May 27, 2014admin 10 Comments »
FILED UNDER :Discriminations , Media

T-shirt slogans (#10)

Dissatisfied with this, so I’m taking the unprecedented step of pushing it under the fold, and replacing it.

Despite some intense competition (see comments), I’m going for the classical approach. People could actually get away with wearing this, without being beaten to a brain-damaged wreck in the streets, and the message could not be more crucial. So here we go:

E > V

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May 23, 2014admin 9 Comments »