Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Liberman responds   posted by p-ter @ 11/27/2007 10:04:00 PM

Mark Liberman has updated his post on race and IQ in response to my post. I actually wrote out a long response and deleted it--believe it or not, I have about as much of a desire to get sucked into this conversation as he does. But I strongly, strongly disagree with his claim that showing two populations have different distributions of IQ and claiming genetics plays a role is, in itself, a "racist theory". My point in the post was that the basic premises of Saletan's article (ie. that there are aspects of "intelligence" that are socially relevant, probably have a genetic component, and differ in distribution across populations) are entirely accepted by Shalizi (ok, he "might agree" with them). This is because they're obvious in the light of evolutionary theory (allele frequencies evolve by natural selection and genetic drift. This includes alleles involved in socially awkward phenotypes like IQ). I'm not opposed to people holding out for more evidence, but imputing nefarious motives to writers for talking about the evidence that exists I do find questionable.