“The Unwelcome Revival of Race Science” is far longer than need be, and carries a certain amount of unnecessary political baggage, but nonetheless, there’s some gold among the dross.
Gist: racial theories are on the rise, particularly among today’s alt-right. To understand why the claims of race theorists are bogus, the author examines the data. A currently popular theory is that Ashkenazi Jews are particularly intelligent; but when tested in the 1920s, the data shows that they were less intelligent than other whites. This article does not mention it, but a prominent eugenicist of that era, Herbert Spencer Jennings, found that the Irish were particularly deficient. Asians of that era, similarly, scored badly on IQ tests.
Much has been made of twin research, but a confounding variable is that adopted twins usually go to families of similar socio-economic status; similar outcomes might be due to similar upbringing. When adopting families are very different in socioeconomic status, the data finds differences in measured IQ.
A most interesting result is the Flynn Effect. IQ tests have to be renormed every decade or so, because each succeeding generation achieves higher scores. By today’s norms, your grandparents had an IQ of only 70. Today’s “racialists” would argue that such morons as their own grandparents were therefore unfit for democracy, and perhaps should have been sterilized.
The entire edifice of ethno-nationalism is based upon shoddy science.
Now, I disagree with the Guardian as to their advocacy of a large welfare state. In particular, it is my belief that today’s schools tend to disadvantage minorities and those of low socioeconomic status; despite spending vast sums on their education, these schools tend to lead to horrible outcomes.
Those of low socioeconommic status who seek their own solutions – by working with their own children, teaching them at home or in co-ops, sending them to charter schools, and otherwise enriching their educational experience – tend to obtain superior results. Hence, I do not trust the political process to uplift those who are at the margins. I advocate educational freedom as in libre, not free as in free beer.
But as to the science, the Guardian and I are on the same page; racialism is a bogus construct, a zombie idea, and the sooner we consign it to oblivion, the better.
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