NIH takes down public data

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In response to a recent paper detailing how to identify an individual from aggregate allele frequency data, the NIH has removed all such data under its control from the public eye.

This is obviously overkill (to identify an individual from such data, one would have to have genotyped them independently), but it’s easier to inconvenience a few scientists than risk a PR backlash. Stories like this make it clear that expectations of privacy in terms of genetic data need a major rethinking; the open consent model of the Personal Genome Project is worth a very close look.

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63 Comments

  1. This kind of precedent — taking down previously public data — is how it begins. See bolded sentence below. 
     
    Let us consider how an Obama admin might go about hamstringing h-bd research. 
     
    1) First, apply hate speech laws and laws against inciting racial hatred to a few key players. Make sure to dig up or even invent some personal dirt to keep the coverage of prosecution of these “racist pseudoscientist” even less sympathetic — or simply do it Guantanamo style[a] with full confidence that the ACLU will pass (as they did with Heller). See also the “human rights commisisions” for an even more obvious example of how the left could use a nonjudicial approach . 
     
    2) Second, massive funding for dedicated opponents. Flood the zone with straight up Boasian fabrications, Gouldian bullshit and Lewontonian half truths. 
     
    3) Third, restrict access and *gathering* of large data sets to “approved responsible investigators” to prevent “genetic discrimination”. All 
    you need to do is make regulatory overhead (e.g. IRB fees) high enough to price statistically significant studies out of the Pioneer Fund range. Patent fees are an example — explicit discouragement by means of financial overhead. 
     
    4) Fourth, consult with top journals to inhbit publication of facts which could give aid and comfort to racists, much as the synthetic polio paper was almost scuttled for being an aid to terrorists. 
     
    Such restrictions are among those being contemplated. Who will fight them? Who will even know why they are being proposed? Who has ever fought a crackdown on “racists”? 
     
    [a] In retrospect, Guantanamo is actually a *bad* analogy — it gets tons of bad press because it’s housing the guilty, whereas the “extraordinary renditions” to human rights commissions get essentially no press at all because they’re leftist persecutions of the innocent. The media isn’t going to stick its neck out for “racists”, ya know…

  2. NIH’s reaction is completely hysterical, because for a compromise to occur:  
     
    a) the same person would need to be genotyped multiple times 
    b) at least one of those times would have to retain an identifier to their public identity 
     
    Otherwise concerns about privacy violation are entirely theoretical.

  3. Just to make the point crystal clear:  
     
    NIH took down previously public data for PR reasons…to avoid the possibility of an extremely minor and theoretical fracas!!! 
     
    So can you imagine what would happen if it was neither minor nor theoretical? If NIH was blamed for the publication of a “new Bell Curve” by a team of “racist pseudoscientists”? Government agencies don’t usually go out of business, but boy, the Secretary of Health and Human Services would be on the hot seat. I could imagine all kinds of onerous restrictions along the lines of Sarbanes-Oxley in the financial industry —  
     
    1) University logins required for access to public data 
     
    2) Heavy regulation — locked down computers and restrictions on data transfer, enforced at the level of HIPAA and beyond.  
     
    3) License managers a la Matlab which phone home and centrally govern access to particular datasets.  
     
    4) Monitoring of all email and internet access of scientists working with “sensitive” data 
     
    5) Background checks (already required for work with hazardous agents) 
     
    Far more than this will happen. Just imagine the regulatory response to Sarbanes-Oxley combined with the furor over the Bell Curve.  
     
    Point: If Obama is elected, h-bd research can and likely will be crippled easily and openly.

  4. I think you overstate the role any given administration would have in any of this. All these restrictions on data access come from *within* the scientific community, not in response to the executive branch. If you’re going to worry about one person overreacting to these hypothetical situations, it should probably be francis collins.

  5. or rather, whoever his successor is.

  6. All these restrictions on data access come from *within* the scientific community, not in response to the executive branch.  
     
    Well, I’d submit that the executive branch gets involved if the press coverage gets big enough. For example, from 2000:  
     
    http://www.genome.gov/10001391 
     
    At today’s Medals of Science and Technology awards ceremony, the President will announce that he and Prime Minister Tony Blair have agreed on a statement of principle to ensure that discoveries from the human genome are used to advance human health. Their joint statement, to be issued in the United States and the United Kingdom today, applauds researchers who have made their human genome sequence data freely available to the global scientific community and calls upon others to follow their lead. The statement also acknowledges the importance of intellectual property protection as an incentive for the development of important, new, gene-based health care products. 
     
    The president is at the top of the org chart for all the Cabinet agencies. You’re absolutely right that on a day-to-day or even year-to-year basis, presidents have plenty to do besides meddling in the internal details of cabinet affairs.  
     
    But if a “genomic Bell Curve” article came out — and it was funded in part by NIH rather than the Pioneer Fund — I think that right after the ritual condemnations of the researchers, attention would quickly turn to the bureaucrats who funded this “racist pseudoscience”. And that would mean enormous heat from the executive to make sure this never happens again.  
     
    From a tactical standpoint, what this means is that savvy authors must *not* openly confront PC in any article that they publish. They need to put out the facts, establish the syllogism, and then put out some squid ink. Wring their hands, pledge their allegiance to the church, their apolitical nature, and their strident opposition to all forms of right-wing political ideology (contradiction intended :).  
     
    In the long term, that kind of Gramscian approach will work to erode the foundations of the PC church. In retrospect, the Hapmap might never have gotten funded if a “Bell Curve” type book had come out at that time. The opponents would have used the ensuing reaction to demagogue the Hapmap into oblivion as they had with the original HGDP. That would have changed the course of history — genomics would have suffered a serious hit, and it’s questionable whether the ongoing enormous capital investment in the space would be anywhere near what it is.  
     
    I think one conclusion is that *no researcher* in this area should allow his work to be branded a “new Bell Curve” as the game will be lost before it has begun. Open opposition is still infeasible. We need stealth mode for at least the next 5-10 years. But — in my opinion — we will be begrudged even that if a leftist administration devoted to rooting out “hate crimes” comes to power.  
     
    If you are still skeptical, I urge you to read this speech by Obama on the Jena Six, particularly his comments about DOJ and the priorities of the Justice Department.  
     
    This is a guy who is going to bring enormous conviction, enthusiasm, and energy to the PC worldview in a manner which this country has never seen before. Clinton was no true believer — he tripled the black incarceration rate. Obama is something else entirely.

  7. I’ve thought about this question for ten years or so, and of course I’ve had more direct experience with the reaction to this kind of work than – well, anyone. 
     
    And I have to conclude that you’re an utter loon. First, the idea that there is some difference in the way that the two political parties would react to controversial research results in this area is simply false. Mostly they won’t react at all because they’re not even interested. Second, the idea that we’ll see draconian regulation of genetic data is highly unlikely: researchers will _not_ like it, independent generation of such data is going to be trivially cheap, and the scheme only works if the US conquers the world.  
    Worse than that – it’d make us fall behind in the great gene race with China. Darpa sure wouldn’t like that.  
     
    Next, you seem to think that understanding the genetic roots of phenotypic differences between population groups will have dramatic effects – in particular, undermine people’s core political beliefs – if allowed to. But in fact it will have minuscule effect. Genotypes are not more convincing than phenotypes, which we see every day. More to the point, you can’t shift such strongly held, emotionally held beliefs with anything less than dynamite. And I don’t mean _rhetorical_ dynamite.  
     
    Read more history.

  8. Let me basically sum it up like this — those who believe Sarah Palin is a right creationist (= doesn’t think humans evolved before migration from Africa) think, justifiably, that she won’t be as enthusiastic about taking evolution’s side if there’s a showdown with JC’s supporters.  
     
    Similarly, those of us who think Obama is a left creationist (= doesn’t think humans evolved after migration from Africa) speculate, justifiably, that he won’t be as enthusiastic about taking evolution’s side if there’s a showdown with PC’s supporters.  
     
    Now, obviously what I’m talking about here is worldview and inference based on worldview. McCain is certainly pretty liberal on racial issues. But I don’t think Palin is. She ripped into the community organizer shtick with gusto, which is not something that someone completely cowed by PC could get away with.

  9. Greg —  
     
    I will first note that Henry seems to agree that restrictions are a topic of discussion. I welcome a calm, factually based discussion with you on this. I’d like to go premise by premise, starting with this one.  
     
    the idea that there is some difference in the way that the two political parties would react to controversial research results in this area is simply false  
     
    Republicans were more likely to defend the Bell Curve when it came out. Evidence:  
     
    Thomas Sowell 
     
    The Bell Curve is a very sober, very thorough, and very honest book (1.) – on a subject where sobriety, thoroughness, and honesty are only likely to provoke cries of outrage. Its authors, Charles Murray and the late Professor Richard J. Herrnstein of Harvard, must have known that writing about differences in intelligence would provoke shrill denunciations from some quarters. But they may not have expected quite so many, quite so loudly or venomously, and from such a wide spectrum of people who should know better.  
     
    Jonah Goldberg 
     
    And that gets us to the heart of why this study is more bogus than a $6 dollar Rolex. Virtually all of the characteristics the authors attribute to the right can be equally laid at the feet of the left. If you think left-wingers have a high tolerance for ambiguity, tell one it’s not clear that Head Start does any good at all. Talk to them about racial differences. Say: “Even if gay marriage were worth doing, there would be many devastating negative consequences.” Mention that a factory closing can be a good thing. Tell them it’s okay for economists to put a specific monetary value on a human life. Tell them intelligence tests measure intelligence.  
     
    and Goldberg again: 
     
    My first major lesson in this phenomenon came when I was a researcher at the American Enterprise Institute at the time The Bell Curve came out. Murray, the coauthor of the book and an AEI scholar, was treated to a shellacking in the national press that has not been replicated since. Television networks introduced their segments by showing clips of Hitler screaming and mobs sieg-heiling at Nuremberg rallies. He was called a eugenicist and fascist in code — and in plain language — a thousand times over. His book pointed out a fact that the most entrenched liberals consider sacred scripture — that there are inequalities between the races-but he differed from orthodoxy on the causes and solutions. It is the wonder of liberal double standards that it is racist to say there are differences between the races and it is racist to say there aren’t.

  10. Michael Ledeen 
     
    ”Never,” my AEI colleague Michael Ledeen observes, ”has such a moderate book attracted such an immoderate response.”  
     
    James Q Wilson 
     
    In an ideal world, the book Herrnstein and Murray have written would pass into public consciousness with scarcely a ripple. “Of course,” readers would say, “we know that people differ in intelligence and we know, from having watched them in school, on the job, and in the neighborhood that this difference will make a difference in how they behave.” And then they would add: “But we are Americans, and in America it is your individual talents and inclinations, and only those, that count. So we don’t have to change anything we are doing as individuals.” 
     
    But this is not an ideal world, and so some conservative racists and some liberal multiculturalists (who are racists of a different kind) will make the wrong kind of fuss about this penetrating and magisterial book. Shame on them 
     
    Michael Novak 
     
    The Herrnstein–Murray findings have violently shifted the ground from under these intellectual foundations; hence the loud wailing and gnashing of teeth. Hence, as well, rapid efforts to shovel the earth back under the wobbly walls. Hence, finally, the hysterical efforts to assassinate the messengers. Their message cannot be true because much more is at stake than a particular set of arguments from psychological science. A this-worldly eschatological hope is at stake. The sin attributed to Herrnstein and Murray is theological: they destroy hope.  

  11. Michael Barone 
     
    PERHAPS because I’m congenitally optimistic, I think The Bell Curve’s message is already widely understood, by the American people if not by the elite. Ordinary citizens know that some people are in significant ways more intelligent than others, that only a relative few are extremely bright or extremely dull, and that intelligence bunches up at the center. They know that intelligence is not randomly distributed among members of different identifiable racial and ethnic groups. These are lessons that are taught in everyday life, and you have to undergo a pretty sophisticated indoctrination and enlist in a tightly disciplined ideological army to believe otherwise.  
     
    Now, all of these people are still alive and still Republicans today. Have they been beaten back and cowed by PC? Yes. But I hope we can agree that passion for the nurturist worldview is stronger on the left than the right. I don’t think that’s a controversial premise, though this might be the root of our disagreement.

  12. The fact that I have to _tell_ you that Palin, if elected, will be spending her time going to the funerals of foreign dictators, rather than making 
    key decisions relating to scientific controversies, illustrates the problem here.

  13. Second, the idea that we’ll see draconian regulation of genetic data is highly unlikely: researchers will _not_ like it  
     
    Greg, but this very thread is about a major NIH restriction on genetic data. Most datasets involving phenotype data are much more locked down than the open bulk downloads of Hapmap. There are all kinds of onerous data security requirements — here for example is the *current* policy on genomic data from dbGAP:  
     
    http://dbgap.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/aa/wga.cgi?login=&page=login 
     
    Who can apply? 
     
    NIH is committed to respecting the privacy and intentions of research participants with regard to how data pertaining to their individual information is used. Data access is therefore intended only for scientific investigators pursuing research questions that are consistent with the informed consent agreements provided by individual research participants. Furthermore, investigators provided access will be expected to utilize appropriate data security measures. 
     
    How does one apply? 
     
    Researchers may now begin requesting individual-level genotype and phenotype data from dbGaP. Please follow request procedures for Principal Investigators and Signing Officials. 
     
    What is an authorized user within the data access request system? 
     
    Authorized users are the Principal Investigators who may request data sets for specific research uses, the Institutional Signing Officials from the PIs home organization who certify and submit such requests, and the NIH staff who will review and process requests (e.g., members of the Data Access Committees). 
     
    Researchers certainly don’t like this. It is an enormous pain to get access to Framingham’s anonymized data. It takes months and months and IRB clearance.  
     
    And this is before any political pressure has been brought to bear.

  14. Palin, if elected, will be spending her time going to the funerals of foreign dictators, rather than making 
    key decisions relating to scientific controversies
     
     
    Oh, I agree with regards to Palin. But I think Obama is much more of a true believer in PC. He was a civil rights lawyer and community organizer — you don’t get more involved with the church than that. 
     
    Regarding whether Palin will be in a solely ceremonial VP role…I think there is room for disagreement on that, especially given McCain’s age, history of torture, and known health problems.

  15. Next, you seem to think that understanding the genetic roots of phenotypic differences between population groups will have dramatic effects – in particular, undermine people’s core political beliefs – if allowed to. But in fact it will have minuscule effect…you can’t shift such strongly held, emotionally held beliefs with anything less than dynamite. And I don’t mean _rhetorical_ dynamite. 
     
    I have never said changes will occur overnight. But ideas matter in the long run. Both Darwin’s truth and Boas’ lies shifted strongly held emotional beliefs over time. I don’t think Darwin’s beliefs needed a war to get to the Scopes trial and beyond.  
     
    I might also point out that in addition to rhetorical and actual dynamite, there is economic dynamite. Any new scientific discovery has engineering applications.

  16. By the way, I think the Wikipedia entry on exactly how Darwin’s ideas gained widespread currency is extremely useful as an example of a nonviolent spread of a politically dangerous idea.  
     
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/History_of_the_creation-evolution_controversy#Creation.2Fevolution_controversy_in_the_age_of_Darwin 
     
    Given today’s communication system, it is quite possible that the propagation and pondering of h-bd critical ideas will cause changes at a more rapid clip than in Darwin’s time…

  17. One more comment and I’ll check back tomorrow… 
     
    Any perusal of a comments section will reveal FAR more supporters of nature/Bell Curve positions on right-wing rather than left-wing blogs. Even your more PC-ish Jim Manzi types are a far cry from grand inquisitors like David Neiwert.  
     
    Consider this thread, for example:  
     
    http://hotair.com/archives/2008/04/28/the-wright-stuff-echoes-of-the-bell-curve/ 
     
    Compare to any Crooked Timber or Eschaton thread on the Bell Curve. You could easily make this quantitative by simply scripting a few blogs. With bag of words plus link structure, you can calculate political orientation and do some basic sentiment analysis (i.e. scoring comments as “yay Bell Curve” or “boo Bell Curve” and blogs as left or right wing).  
     
    The results will, I think, be fairly obvious. Similar conclusions hold for threads discussing Watson and Summers (who are nominal Democrats, but well to the right of their party on this issue).  
     
    Point is that the parties do differ on this issue. Opposition to h-bd is a core tenet of the left, while it is a surface issue on the right.

  18. I’m so glad I read these comments: I had previously been under the impression that gcochran = gc… 
     
    That would explain a lot of my confusion regarding certain matters!

  19. McCain is certainly pretty liberal on racial issues. But I don’t think Palin is. She ripped into the community organizer shtick with gusto, which is not something that someone completely cowed by PC could get away with. 
     
    So the evidence that Palin is not beholden to a PC stance on race is a her telling one joke that with generous intrepretation can be seen to be skewering minority activists (rather than left type activists generally) and one that she likely had no role in writing? I think the issues you raise about Obama’s worldview and its implications for HBD resarch are interesting, which but this boundless optimism for Palin is absurd. 
     
    Also I think PC is a rather misleading term in this dicussion. What is considered anti-PC in discussions of race is talking about personal responsiblity as opposed to government invervention in addressing the outcomes of different races, but that is completely orthogonal to acknowledging HBD. HBD jars significantly with the rhetoric of both sides and I think this will translate into a relucance from both parties in acknowleding it, though the left’s approach is clearly more vested in the notion of equality in talents across races.

  20. 1. the concern sparking this is privacy, not hysterical anti-HBD. 
    2. the difference between the democrats and republicans on HBD is marginal at best. both will continue the funding of general stuff like neurogenetics, and neither will fund bell-curve type research. 
    3. greg cochran hit the nail on the head.

  21. I’m so glad I read these comments: I had previously been under the impression that gcochran = gc… 
     
    LOL. well, that must have been kind of fun though, right?

  22. old dope peddler:  
     
    So the evidence that Palin is not beholden to a PC stance on race is a her telling one joke  
     
    I’m basing my impression on more than that. See VDare article for more. Her instincts are nationalistic.  
     
    Boundless optimism  
     
    Not boundless by any means. She’s still a politician. But IMO she’s (by far) the best of the available choices.  
     
    What is considered anti-PC in discussions of race is talking about personal responsiblity as opposed to government invervention in addressing the outcomes of different races, but that is completely orthogonal to acknowledging HBD.  
     
    I disagree. Note that as lies about h-bd attained critical mass, that shifted the spectrum of argument to the left — no dynamite needed. Conversely, if h-bd knowledge became widespread, the fact that government intervention does not close gaps would be undeniable and the spectrum would shift to the right. Now liberals would argue that personal responsibility might make NAMs contribute at the same level, while conservatives would take the strong h-bd view that the differences cannot be eliminated but at best ameliorated.  
     
    Basically, Republican support for h-bd denial is as thin/grudging as Democrat support for capitalism. For someone with the time to do it, this statement can be easily justified by the sentiment analysis methods described above.

  23. ben g: 
     
    1. the concern sparking this is privacy, not hysterical anti-HBD. 
     
    The point is that a precedent has been established for taking down previously public data to avoid negative PR.  
     
    2. the difference between the democrats and republicans on HBD is marginal at best.  
     
    No, and I actually presented links to the contrary. You have only bald assertion.  
     
    With all due respect, I don’t want to debate with you as it will be the same outcome as in the EDAR thread and the Epigone thread.  
     
    1) I state something (“evidence for h-bd is overwhelming” or “h-bd research is currently hampered by regulation”) and provide links 
    2) You deny it 
    3) I rain down even more links 
    4) You eventually grudgingly admit that you don’t know the area 
     
    If you are going to claim that the “right and left have the same attitudes towards h-bd”, the same situation will recur. All that needs to be done is to hit FreeRepublic and DailyKos, HotAir and Eschaton, and a few other representative right & left blogs. Pull down recent threads on race, IQ, Watson, Summers, etc. Compare counts of comments in support vs. comments against. That will be quantitative and there will be no contest.  
     
    If you have a counterargument, support it with references. You can also state that you disagree, but don’t have the time to find them. What you can’t do is make assertions without references.

  24. gcochran: sure, Palin as VP would have no particular authority.  
     
    And almost the same can be said of Palin as President. I am confident that you are not operating under the illusion that the President is “the leader of the free world” or even the CEO of the executive branch, who can just call up NIH and tell them what to do – as if he was FDR, or Stalin, or something. I don’t think gc is under this illusion either. 
     
    But Presidential elections still do matter, because public opinion matter. And the election is a unique way to measure American public opinion when it actually concentrates and tries to think with its tiny, lizardlike brain.  
     
    An election sends a message to every bureaucrat in Washington. Electing Obama sends the message: full steam ahead to the left. Electing Palin, and that old guy she’s running with, sends the message: be careful, the hicks in the sticks may be starting to smell something – turn the heat down on the frog. 
     
    Basically, if Obama loses, the progressive movement will be a little bit dispirited and dejected, and thus a little less aggro in sniffing out and destroying its enemies. And if he wins, of course, “Barack will make you work.” Do you want to work for Barack? 
     
    I prefer Obama because I want the heat turned *up* on the frog. For strategic reasons. But I also think gc has very sound tactical reasons for wanting it turned down.

  25. gc, 
     
    just want to make clear that i don’t think the “right and left have the same attitudes towards h-bd”. (i’m not accusing you of suggesting this.. just wanted to make it clear) 
     
    links that show that the right tends to be more HBD friendly than the left (which I’ve already conceded) do nothing to prove that an obama and mccain administration would differ greatly in how they funded or restricted HBD-related science. 
     
    Mencius, 
     
    your argument could be supported by showing that HBD research was significantly restricted under Democratic presidents vs. Republican presidents. where’s the evidence that the difference wasn’t marginal or non-existent. 
     
    perhaps your argument is not about Democrats so much as the meaning of Obama in particular. If that is indeed the case then you should avoid describing this in terms of bureacrats going to the left in response to the election and start detailing how Obama differs so much from previous Democrats that he alone could derail HBD-related research.

  26. Over the next ten years, the HBD issue is going to be on the table in an unprecedented way. In the past there was no government research on the subject, so the “data” you ask for doesn’t exist. In the future it will be a lot harder to tiptoe around the minefield. 
     
    (BTW, I thought David Goldstein’s response was pretty funny. “Standardized” intelligence! Ketman, anyone?) 
     
    Obama is a lot more exciting and empowering to the left than, say, Hillary would be. It’s just basic primate mob psychology. They hoot and beat their chests and rile each other up. Call it “change.” A vote for Obama is a vote for “change.” And a vote for “change” is not a vote for HBD.

  27. “Ketman, anyone?” 
     
    While reading the Wade article, I could have sworn I heard Goldstein softly whisper, “Eppur si muove”…

  28. mencius, 
     
    do you think the majority of obama voters are voting for him primarily to support political correctness? 
     
    if so, that helps me understand your position better. perhaps your idea is that the bureacrats will read the obama victory not as a rebuke to the iraq war, bush’s handling of the economy, and general incompetence, but primarily as a push for more political correctness?

  29. I’m glad this topic came up again, because there were ideas I wanted to respond to in greater depth last time, but got caught up in other things. 
     
    First of all, I actually agree with godless that an Obama administration will probably mean more PC in society as a whole, and even that this atmosphere will translate into more informal and formal controls on hbd science. What I disagree with is that this is an issue of high relative political or scientific importance. Now I realize why this would be of high relative importance to hbd researchers, who have a high personal stake in such research, and I certainly don’t begrudge them on that. But otherwise I believe the potential negative effect of Obama on this narrow corner of science is of low relative importance to the national interest for the following 3 reasons (which I will spread over three comments for readability): 
     
    NUMBER 1) Republicans Leadership is Inferior and Harmful 
     
    I believe neoconservatism and fundamentalist Christianity generally, and McCain/Palin specifically, are antithetical to the prosperity of America. Underlying neoconservatism are some of the most disastrous foreign policy philosophies possible. If neoconservative rule is allowed to continue, America will become further alienated from the world, lose virtually all of its allies (except, of course, Israel), become further bankrupted to the tune of trillions of dollars, and quite possibly be drawn into unfathomably catastrophic 21st century warfare with the likes of Russia or another nuclear power.  
     
    Even apart from these dominant conservative governing philosophies, I do not believe Republicans are the party of competent, high human capital leadership. Republican voters pass over the high IQ technocrats like Mitt Romney (who are already much more rare among Republican elites than Democratic elites) and consistently promote and reward embarrassing mediocrities like George Bush and Sarah Palin. I believe this is done, in part, because of fundamentalist Christianity. Most high IQ people are irreligious, so right-wingers are often forced to select people with lower IQs (and/or lower intellectual openness) as their leaders. These are virtually the only people who are genuinely sympathetic to beliefs like creationism and fetal ensoulment. (This also means high IQ politicians like Mitt Romney have to opportunistically pander to these beliefs, against their better instincts) So voting Republican often means picking lower IQ leaders who have poor epistemology (i.e. they do not value science or expertise). 
     
    In the previous thread I showed that Barack Obama values expertise, while John McCain does not. Barack Obama also has an IQ that is likely in excess of 150 (MCL @ Harvard Law), which is likely 1-2 SDs higher than John McCain’s IQ. (and quite possibly 2.5-3 SDs higher than Sarah Palin’s). I believe this is important
     
    I believe these two facts (IQ and epistemology) predict the efficacy of the executive branch more than any other variable or combination of variables. Especially when the ideological distance between candidates is relatively narrow. This belief follows from my conviction in hbd, and so I think this is my hbd case for Obama as president. 
     
    Obama of course, is not a European socialist, he understands economics, while John McCain does not, and a large majority of economists support him (with a 2:1 ratio over McCain).

  30. GC: “Make no mistake, the series of articles which breaks this all open definitively is less than 10 years and probably less than five years away. It’s really nothing less than deicide, a world historical event that will cause massive upheaval.” 
     
    NUMBER 2) Mainstream Elites Already Shamelessly Deny Simple, Established Facts, and Therefore Obviously Will Not Change in Response to Novel, Complex Facts 
     
    I donÂ’t believe that hbd is scientifically “provable”, and certainly not to any greater extent than other issues like global warming or evolution that are already factually proven but easily dismissed by certain ideologically driven elites and non-experts on any number of dumb, false, and fallacious pretenses. Facts and science, no matter how well demonstrated, can in no way be forced onto people who do not want to believe, and have every incentive not to. 
     
    Consider: How many hbd facts are already known, but dismissed? Do currently known facts, in any way, permit the belief that crimes are not committed disproportionately by NAMs? No. And yet the facts are denied/omitted from mainstream/elite discourse and politics. What new kind of proof would make this fact undeniable? Do currently known facts in any way permit the belief that NAMs do not have lower measured intelligence? No. And yet the facts are denied/omitted from mainstream/elite discourse and politics. 
     
    So if most simple, established phenotypic differences, which are easily demonstrated and trivially abstract truths, are already denied by a critical mass of elite scientists, academics, political leaders, and educated Americans, then complex genotypic facts, which are not easily demonstrated, and are highly abstract, WILL NOT be accepted by ANY of the same people. 
     
    How can people accept a genotypic basis for a phenotypic difference that they do not factually accept in the first place? The second fact relies completely on an acceptance of the first fact. Additionally, the evidence for the second fact is more complicated than the evidence for the first fact, which many elites already have (either genuine or affected) trouble understanding. (e.g. news articles which all make the same tard errors when “refuting” phenotypic group differences)  
     
    Genetics already demonstrate, beyond any reasonable doubt, that man evolved from a chimpanzee-like ancestor. Did these powerful, novel scientific demonstrations do absolutely anything to reduce belief in creationism? The answer is ‘noÂ’. And is Liberal Creationism any less religious or ideological than Biblical Creationism? The answer is also ‘noÂ’.  
     
    Facts do not change false ideological beliefs, and studies show that, in many cases, strong scientific and perceptual debunkings of false claims can even strengthen conviction in the same false ideological beliefs. 
     
    NAMs, who are already approaching 30% of the population, are NEVER going to accept any kind of evidence that shows that their natural abilities limit their placement in society. Never. Not any more than Fundamentalists are ever going to accept any kind of scientific facts which marginalize their core beliefs. And the elites are never going to voluntarily put themselves into insoluble, schismatic conflict with NAMs by accepting such information either, just as they currently deny fully proven phenotypic information. Just as they wantonly deny and distort numerous facts from population genetics, behavior genetics, psychometrics, sociobiology, basic statistics, and many other disciplines. 
     
    All available evidence contradicts the belief that hbd is not accepted by elites because of an insufficiency of facts. Elites already deny many well-established, even painfully obvious, scientific facts. 
     
    [And, ironically, if any political leaders ever do apply hbd evidence in some manner to political actions, these leaders are probably more likely to be Democrats!, since, as argued above, Democratic leaders have higher intelligence, and are more likely to defer to scientific information]

  31. GC: “The reason the left has been successful in elections is that people observe inequality and they are prevented from attributing it even partially to DNA rather than discrimination… society changed pretty quickly when PC lies attained 99% approval in the 60′s. It will change pretty quickly again when the biggest lie of them all bites the dust among the elites.” 
     
    NUMBER 3) The Axiom of Equality Is Simply Based on a Moral/Social Commitment to Deny Unflattering Differences, Not a Dispassionate (or even Self-Consistent) Assessment of the Nature, Existence, and Origin of Differences. 
     
    Two of your statements from the previous thread demonstrate you already must know this on some level, and contradict the claim that genetics have much, if anything, to do with the Axiom of Equality that underlies such PC politics: 
     
    A) GC: ”[genetic proof will transform the debate on] Civil liberties and national defense: do Muslims commit terrorist attacks at higher rates? If so is it a waste of resources to seize the shampoo of millions of travelling grandmothers? Is it a waste of resources to fight endless wars rather than to simply ban further Muslim immigration and strongly incentivize voluntary repatriation? 
     
    These policies are “bad” because they make self/nonself distinctions. They are racist — and racism is bad because we all know there are no BEHAVIORAL differences between ethnic groups.”
    (my emphasis – JM) 
    As I showed above, complex genotypic studies do not demonstrate behavioral differences, basic observational and phenotypic measurements do, and, again, one must FIRST accept the evidence the behavioral differences exist in order to accept evidence they are caused by genetics. But denial of unflattering behavioral differences is what you are describing. 
     
    Muslim terrorism is not caused by genetics, and is not controversial because it could be caused by genetics. And even if it is caused by genetics, no possible evidence for such a fact could be even 1/10th as comprehensible or obvious to the lay public than the plain observable reality of behavioral differences. Muslim men from the swarthy nations commit all the terrorism, while little white grannies commit none of it. No one believes otherwise. No one. The elite do not believe it. The public does not believe it. No complex, indirect scientific set of facts could make such an insanely superficial truth more obvious to regular or elite people. And yet the resources are wasted pretending otherwise. Why? Because the Axiom of Equality is a Noble Lie. A Noble Lie that is, both consciously and unconsciously, held, completely voluntarily, by the grand majority of Western cultural, scientific, and political elites, and by a sizable portion of the non-elite public. (and virtually all NAMs) 
     
    Society did not change pretty quickly in the 60s because of scientific data. If anything, the neodarwinian synthesis of the early to mid 20th century lent massive support, in both theory and data, to hbd. But cumulative political changes and world events – the Great Depression, WWII, the Civil Rights Movement, decolonization – had seismic transformative effects on the underlying moral worldview and politics of Western nations, which drove how this knowledge was collectively framed or distorted or ignored or strategically detached from political thought.  
     
    Even if you could Force the Truth of genetics on the elite or the public (and you canÂ’t: point Number 2 above) the moral motivations remain the same, and voters and politicians will still not plug the known facts into their political behavior, just as voters and politicians NOW do not plug ALREADY KNOWN un-PC facts into their political behavior.B) GC: ”I recently got tired of arguing with a friend about black crime rates in person. I stopped in the middle and said, “let’s go for a ride”. My friend looked at me quizzically and asked where. I casually mentioned the name of the center of our toughest nearby black ghetto. He threw up his hands and said “ok, point taken”.In other words your friend does not verbally or socially acknowledge facts which he tacitly believes and applies in his personal behavior. The public already knows phenotypic differences exist, and more educated people, who are more likely to adopt ideological AoE, are also more likely to behave as if those differences do exist. 
     
    Why is such a Noble Lie voluntarily held? Because Western whites never otherwise resolved how it is possible to have a cooperative, inclusive, amicable social co-existence with NAMs while treating them differently, as an inferior or more suspect class of citizen, or expressing beliefs about them that the NAMs do not appreciate and will never accept. 
     
    It’s similar to why it is nearly impossible for a white to maintain a friendship or romantic relationship with a NAM and be openly hbd. Elite and non-elite whites do not want to socially separate from blacks. This want has shaped and was shaped by 200 years of American politics, from the Civil War to MLK. In order to integrate with blacks, whites have voluntarily adopted Noble Lies – outward beliefs and behaviors – that show they conform to the this deeply ingrained inclusive ideology of society. On a personal level, there is now a strong incentive to adopt these beliefs, both to allow normal social relationships with NAMs and to preserve social status among whites. It is socially dangerous and personally disadvantageous to express beliefs which contradict these modern foundational principles of society.

  32. Excuse my ignorance, but what is a ‘NAM’? 
     
    Incidentally, ‘Muslim men from the swarthy nations commit all the terrorism’ seems a tad oversimplified. In my lifetime and in my country (the UK) most terrorism has been committed by white Irishmen. And if I recall correctly, the second worst terrorist incident in the history of the United States was committed by white political extremists.

  33. David, “Non-Asian Minorities”. And yes, I was referring to contemporary Islamic terrorism.

  34. NAMs, who are already approaching 30% of the population, are NEVER going to accept any kind of evidence that shows that their natural abilities limit their placement in society. Never.  
     
    I don’t know if I agree with this. As the country becomes more diverse, it won’t just be a majority race-that-has (whites) vs. a minority race-that-has-not (blacks). Instead there will be a spectrum with East Asians at one end, then whites, then mestizos, then blacks. South Asians would probably group close to the whites. My point is that people might be more willing to entertain the notion of average differences in intelligence between the races in a situation where being a NAM doesn’t consign you to being the loser in a binary relationship. I.e., the average mestizo might say, “Well, we’re not up there with the whites, but they’re getting their pants beaten off of them by the Koreans anyway, and at least we’re not with the blacks, so we’re doing all right.”

  35. NAMs, who are already approaching 30% of the population, are NEVER going to accept any kind of evidence that shows that their natural abilities limit their placement in society. Never.  
     
    And after Obama’s election, I’m not really sure why they would.

  36. neoconservative rule is allowed to continue  
     
    First, neoconservative rule will continue whether Obama is elected or not. Did you see his speech at AIPAC?  
     
    Second, I personally would rather have the govt. focused on fighting possibly imaginary enemies overseas rather than attacking genuinely imaginary enemies within. If the choice is between status quo on Iraq and PC vs. massive drawdown of troops (= US defeat) and massive upswing in PC at home, that’s a no brainer.  
     
    I believe these two facts (IQ and epistemology) predict the efficacy of the executive branch  
     
    This is perhaps the point I disagree with most strongly. How can you possibly say that his epistemology is good? Obama will never accept h-bd factors in any policy decision. He will not accept, for example, that the mortgage crisis was the predictable result of threatening banks with lawsuits unless they made bad loans to minorities. He will not accept that income inequality is rising primarily because millions of illiterate Hispanics are streaming into the country. He will not accept that hospitals are going bankrupt all over California because of Hispanic immigration. He will not accept that the problem of crime in America is disproportionately a black and Hispanic problem.  
     
    In short, Obama’s epistemology is irrevocably and fatally flawed. This is a left creationist, period point blank.  
     
    Not only is he a true believer in a pack of lies, he is also an experienced rabble rouser. His whole shtick is rousing groups of blacks to angrily demand things from whites. That’s what community organizing is about. He’s now generalized those tactics to also pull in white progressives into his shock troops. I mean, this guy organizes DDOS attacks on people who disagree with him! Just you wait till he can assemble his team of Red Guards, his “Service Nation”.  
     
    global warming…that are already factually proven  
     
    A digression, but I’d suggest reading climateaudit.org. I think extremely serious concerns have been raised about multiproxies and the hockey stick, and CO2 as a lagging rather than leading indicator — and that neither Mann nor Hansen have been willing to release source code and data. I haven’t spent the time to seriously dig into the area, but until I do I don’t want to hear about the “consensus” from anyone who doesn’t have a PhD in atmospheric physics, as I have a number of technical questions :) 
     
    Did these powerful, novel scientific demonstrations do absolutely anything to reduce belief in creationism? The answer is ?no?.  
     
    But of course they did over time. Belief in creationism is far weaker today than it was in Darwin’s time.  
     
    NAMs, who are already approaching 30% of the population, are NEVER going to accept any kind of evidence that shows that their natural abilities limit their placement in society. Never.  
     
    Completely disagree about the “NEVER”. Look, this is just a function of power. The truth is that NAMs will accept whatever white society tells them to accept. The only reason any independence movements or civil rights movements ever got off the ground is that the NAMs had sympathizers among the whites who controlled their messaging, furnished them with tactics, gave them sympathetic media coverage, and (outside the US) equipped them with arms.  
     
    As just one example, do you know how Brown vs. Board of Ed really came about?  
     
    As another example, do you think the LA Riots would ever have happened without NAMs seeing the edited clip of Rodney King on the news every night — the clip that omitted the PCP fueled charge at the police and the high speed chase — and without being told that society was “racist” against them?  
     
    The point is that  
     
    1) the currently heightened standard of living of NAMs (and reduced standard of living of whites) is a function of their support among leftist whites 
    2) that support is everything, as without it NAMs are incapable of any kind of significant organization

  37. Thus, as a group, NAMs can be ignored from a messaging perspective. The only people that need to be convinced are leftist whites. NAMs cannot be convinced, but this doesn’t matter. Their behavior is entirely a function of what whites sanction. In a strong white society which unapologetically enforces white mores, the illegitimacy and crime rates stay down.  
     
    Alternatively, you have a society in which leftist whites allow the natural NAM phenotype to emerge — viz. rap at the top of the charts, NBA and NFL players on TV, lyrics with “fuck the police”, Soulja Girl and James Broadnax, and so on.  
     
    Since NAMs will go with whatever the larger society tells them to go with, they are meaningless from an ideological standpoint. The leftist whites are their real power base, the NAMs are meaningless except as shock troops and guilt objects.

  38. Jason Malloy, a couple of quibbles: 
     
    1. NAM’s or at least African-Americans as a whole already accept Hbd without embarassment or apologies. It is the mostly-white policy elites who don’t. 
     
    2. If by the facticity of “global warming” you mean the position of the “global warming alarmists” — i.e., the idea that we should spend hundreds of billions of dollars via carbon taxes, cap and trade, etc., in an attempt to moderate the extent of future global warming — then there is no expert consensus based on solid science. If anything the evidence runs the other way, as Lomborg argues.

  39. Of course this sounds terrible by modern standards, but it must be recognized that NAMs can only be made into sympathetic figures by leftist whites, working overtime to hide stuff like this from the national news. The reality of what NAMs bring is extremely ugly and barbaric.  
     
    Muslim men from the swarthy nations commit all the terrorism, while little white grannies commit none of it. No one believes otherwise. No one.  
     
    But look! Burbridge in this very thread is making the standard “overlap/equality” argument about how whites can be terrorists too — don’t you remember those IRA and abortion clinic bombers, after all?  
     
    This overlap/equality casuistry always comes back to the axiom of equality. “Oh you want to stop Muslim immigration? Sounds like something a NAZI would do. And we know Nazis were bad because…”.  
     
    Attacking the axiom of equality is striking the root. Everything else is just lopping off branches.  
     
    Elite and non-elite whites do not want to socially separate from blacks.  
     
    I think that is incorrect. If you look at their social and housing purchases, they want to stay far away from NAMs. They just don’t want to be called on it by the media guilt complex.

  40. Jay, basically what this boils down to is something I’ve been trying to articulate for sometime.  
     
    Do you remember that post which Razib had up a while back which talked about his visit to Bangladesh? Everyone was relaxing till his true believer uncle said that he was coming over. Quickly everyone moved around and the women retreated into back rooms and everyone put on a pious facade, to satisfy this Islamic inquisitor.  
     
    Now, most likely everyone in that room besides Razib was “Muslim” in the sense that they went along with the stuff. But they weren’t *true believers*. They didn’t spend their free cycles on it, it wasn’t a topic of emphasis for them.  
     
    The problem is that for those who *did* think about it, it became a tool for bullying. Once nonsense about Allah or PC becomes the moral true north that everyone has to genuflect to, you naturally produce a priest class that exploits this true north. In Islamic countries, you can win any argument by being more fundamentalist, more holy. Today in the West, you can win any argument by framing your opponent as racist and using accepted theological arguments as buttress (“institutionally racist”, “disparate impact”).  
     
    Obama may not have studied at a madrassah as a child, but he certainly studied at one as an adult — namely Harvard Law, which trained him to be a “civil rights lawyer”.  
     
    What is a civil rights lawyer? It is someone who uses PC to gain cash for himself and bully whites into being first victimized by NAMs and then taxed to support them. It is basically as close to pure evil as you can get, but of course people perceive it as “good” as the Church still controls the airwaves.  
     
    When I think “Barack Obama”, I think:  
     
    1) PC true believer (civil rights lawyer) 
    2) racial agitator & rabble rouser (Wright, community organizer) 
    3) corrupt Chicago politician (Rezko) 
    4) domestic terrorist & Communist sympathizer (Ayers) 
    5) criminal enabler (supports the Jena Six, recruiting felons to vote
     
    I definitely *do not* think “competent technocrat”. I am amazed that you have bought into this illusion. What has Obama ever accomplished to make you believe that he has any executive competence whatsoever? Has he ever run a business, invented a technology, or really done anything of note outside the racial spoils system?  
     
    No, he has not. And since his power base comes from the PC taboo, his presidency will be focused upon building up that power base. Mark my words.

  41. As for McCain, whatever else you can say about McCain — and I can say plenty — at least when encountering a situation in which six blacks attack a white from behind and kick him in the head till he’s unconscious and bleeding, McCain’s first instinct is not to bring up “institutional racism”.

  42. ben g, 
     
    What you call “political correctness” is what I call “Universalism,” and whatever you call it it is inarguably the most successful modern branch of the mainline Protestant tradition. Which happens to be pretty much the most powerful religion on Earth today and for the last century, although it has mutated away most of its theism. 
     
    So, yes: Obama is a religious candidate. Most Obama supporters appear to be for Obama because they want a more Universalist government. Similarly, most Palin supporters appear to be for Palin because they want a more “Christian” (traditionalist, salvationist, fundamentalist, etc) government. There are certainly policy implications to this struggle, but at bottom it’s just your good, old-fashioned religious war.

  43. “So the evidence that Palin is not beholden to a PC stance on race is a her telling one joke that with generous intrepretation can be seen to be skewering minority activists (rather than left type activists generally) and one that she likely had no role in writing?” 
     
    The teleprompter blew when she was half-way through the speech and she had to wing it. I don’t know exactly where so i can’t say whether said joke was spontaneous. Even if it wasn’t, it does sound like her, so to speak.

  44. Obama an IQ in excess of 150! Jason, you disappoint me.  
     
    He certainly does write a lot about himself and began at an early age for bio, or at least his name is on the cover; but nothing he goes on about suggests extraordinary intelligence. Nothing. He can’t speak without a teleprompter–he may be even more scripted than Bush who can at least crack drunk jokes if his goes off. 
    If BO had an IQ like that, you’d better bet a vintage William Ayers-Bernadette Dorn community organizer, mug-shot tee-shirt we’d have heard about it. We heard nothing about IQ or even grades. Summa cum laude graduate? Why no academic portrait? No high praise for whatever it was he did as an editor or the Harvard law review? No brilliant articles by his illustrous pen in that review or anywhere. It’s really a mystery. He comes out of obscurity ready to run, armed and programmed with speeches and more speeches and books about himself and his racial anxieties. And this somehow inspires the whole world to want to vote him president of the whole world, which is what he and his handlers acted like with that absurd Berlin appearance and that fake Greek temple in the stadium. Where is Leni Riefenstahl when you need her (I don’t think she’s reincarnated Palin, regardless of democrat.com emails to the contrary) because that “temple” was some lame stage prop. If you’re going to do the mesmerized crowds in the stadium scene, do it right, not with styrofoam. They could have at least used plywood. But what do Greek columns have to do with this candidate–oh yeah, Ivy League fraternities. 
    For the past few years a number of people have tried to convince us of Bush’s high IQ, due to his SATs. Maybe. But it hasn’t made much difference in performance. 
     
    The Democrats have seemed more intelligent in every election since Nixon–which may be why they no longer err on the side of smarts. 
    However, sadly, this election, they’ve got a dud firecracker. He goes up with a looooong whoosh, he sends a few sparkles, then it goes dark.

  45. A growing mestizo population, up to a point, does not mean American whites would be politically powerless to incorporate HBD into public policy. 
     
    Look at Brazil. Whites in Brazil are still *firmly* in control of all the major social/political/economic institutions of the Brazilian nation, despite a lack of any notable “white racial awareness” – and Brazilian whites are only 40-49% of the overall population.  
     
    Furthermore, it isn’t like Brazil is a Latin American, white, racial fascist state that has official racial apartheid; Brazil is a reasonably functional 2nd world democracy. Yet, the black/mulatto population despite having sizable numbers, is not politically dominant. 
     
    American whites will still be a majority by the time the relationship between IQ and behaviour/personality has been revealed. When the HBD era arrives, American whites will still be the dominant ethnic group. 
     
    All they need is the will to *use* their political power to – peacefully – get rid of the PC statist policies and enforcers.

  46. mencius, 
     
    so, what supposedly is going through the mind of a given bureaucrat who dabbles in science policies after Obama is elected? 
     
    “Well.. Obama just won the election 51 to 49. He represents Universalism (?) so we better gear our policies towards preventing the funding of science that challenges the core axioms of it. This will mean not giving any grants to the search for genes linked to IQ.” 
     
    Perhaps you have a post up somewhere on how you imagine the trickle-down of the president’s supporters’ ideology occuring *in detail*. If so I’d like to read that. The current image I have in my mind of what you propose is far-fetched and implausible.

  47. GC: “I definitely *do not* think “competent technocrat”. I am amazed that you have bought into this illusion. What has Obama ever accomplished to make you believe that he has any executive competence whatsoever?” 
     
    AT: “Obama an IQ in excess of 150! Jason, you disappoint me.” 
     
    Right, Obama has an IQ >145, and this is not reasonably up for debate. Magna cum laude Harvard Law. That’s top 10% of the class based on blindly graded exams, at a school where the average undergraduate has an SAT of 1490 (IQ >140). 
     
    As I already showed, Obama respects expertise and has high intelligence, and I don’t believe other variables, alone or in combination, are as predictive of “executive competence”. You’re free to check Google Scholar for papers about which variables predict presidential performance. I did. This is the paper that was most convincing; 100 years of IQ-performance research tell me it must be correct. I am a reductionist and intelligence is the primary factor in human success. Thus, with other factors being relatively similar (and lurid Obama Stalinism paranoia aside, they are), Obama’s intelligence indicates he is the superior presidential candidate. I can think of no other job where it would be prudent to pick the candidate with an IQ up to 2 SDs lower. 
     
    “Thus, as a group, NAMs can be ignored from a messaging perspective. The only people that need to be convinced are leftist whites…  
    Of course this sounds terrible by modern standards, but it must be recognized that NAMs can only be made into sympathetic figures by leftist whites, working overtime to hide stuff… from the national news. The reality of what NAMs bring is extremely ugly and barbaric.”
     
     
    Godless, your facts here are wrong. All quantitative investigations of this show that TV news exaggerates NAM criminality, and inflates white (and black on white) victimization: 
     
    “We conducted a content analysis of a random sample of local television news programming in Los Angeles and Orange counties… ‘Intergroup’ comparisons of perpetrators (Black and Latino vs. White) revealed that Blacks and Latinos are significantly more likely than Whites to be portrayed as lawbreakers on television news [relative to offending rates].” 
     
    (Dixon & Linz 2000) 
     
    “By a 1.5:1 (241 to 160) ratio, White victims outnumbered Blacks in [Chicago local] news reports – even though Blacks in Chicago and most core cities are more likely to be victimized… Using story time as a measure, the ratio spent on White victims to that on Blacks exceeded 3:1.” 
     
    (Entman and Rojecki 2001, pp. 81-84) 
     
    This all appears to be for television news, instead of, e.g., newspapers (much less ‘elite’ papers) and other forms of media. So there may be more to the picture, but the academic literature doesn’t appear to support the FrontPage Magazine type received wisdoms on race and media. And does not support that the hoi polloi are manipulated by the elite through their channels of information in the manner you assert. The elite are much more likely to lie among themselves. And they are repeating and believing what they want to believe. 
     
    If the natural instincts of elite leftist whites were to revolt against, ignore, politically separate from, or subjugate NAMs, as you suggest, then they would not actively bury and lie about all the scientific information that could already be used to justify such actions. But they do. So the logical inference is that they are doing what they desire to, and the facts are besides the point now and will continue to be in the future. 
     
    I say this as someone who believes in hbd, and does not think a tranfer of living standards from whites to NAMs is a bad thing, and wants whites and NAMs to fully co-exist and/or interbreed because I viscerally recognize all of them as American citizens. This visceral tug motivates a lot of the behavior you disdain, and genetic insights will not dent it. 
     
    You have said on many occasions there is a massive difference in moral suasion between 1) I’m poor because you cheated me, and 2) I’m poor because I’m stupid. But again this is a phenotypic question, not a genotypic question. And Elites already resist evidence showing the phenotypic pathway to inequality.  
     
    IMO, you have not correctly understood the source of elite behavior, so your mental model of how they will behave given certain kinds of published findings is incorrect. 
     
    Fairly dispositive is their long-running denial of numerous, already unambiguous facts. It sets a clear precedent for predictions about how they will react to any future facts. And also serves to limit what kinds of theories can explain their behavior. (e.g. they are not just making rational political decisions based on the best available data)

  48. Jason Malloy: 
     
    “I say this as someone who believes in hbd, and does not think a tranfer of living standards from whites to NAMs is a bad thing, and wants whites and NAMs to fully co-exist and/or interbreed because I viscerally recognize all of them as American citizens.” 
     
    Glad to hear you say that, Jason. I heartily agree.

  49. Obama Stalinism paranoia  
     
    Question: did Saul Alinsky work with Communists? (Answer: YES) 
    Question: is Obama a student of Saul Alinsky? (Answer: YES) 
     
    These are not marginal associations. They go to the core of worldview and tactics. Obama has not repudiated Alinskyite “community organizing”, he has embraced it! 
    You simply have not dug into Obama’s background and as a consequence your view of Obama is highly selective and wishful. Who is Frank Marshall Davis? Who sent Obama?  
     
    Remember that there were plenty of intelligent Communists and they were not good stewards of the economy! I’d *much* rather have a capitalist/nationalist of moderately above average intelligence than a highly intelligent racial agitator as prez.  
     
    If the natural instincts of elite leftist whites were to revolt against, ignore, politically separate from, or subjugate NAMs, as you insist  
     
    I think you misunderstand me. The natural instincts of all non-NAMs — left, right, elite or not — are indeed to socially separate from NAMs to reduce victimization and taxation. That’s what gated communities, private schools, and the state of Montana are all about.  
     
    But I never said that *leftist* whites are revolting against, ignoring, or subjugating NAMs. Far from it! What I said is that a) NAMs are incapable of organizing themselves, b) it is useless to attempt to reason with them as they will go along with whatever standards white society sets, and c) the key to changing attitudes/policies is to go after leftist whites, who are the NAM enablers.

  50. Far from “revolting against them”, leftist whites lurrrve them some NAMs, *especially* if they can demonstrate conspicuous compassion for the likes of illegal aliens and “Tookie” Williams while keeping as far away from them as possible. For this reason, unless someone has actually lived on Martin Luther King Boulevard or in South Central LA, I dismiss all their expressions of compassion for NAMs *as a group* as unmoored from reality. Such compassion is based on endless media portraits of blacks as doctors, judges, cops, and computer scientists…as martyrs and saints and even literally God figures. Enter the warzones, live there for a year, see if you make it out without being violently attacked, and then let’s see if you retain your compassion :) 
     
    All quantitative investigations of this show that TV news exaggerates NAM criminality…  
     
    WOW. I cannot believe that you are claiming that the media overrepresents (!!!) NAM crime, and moreover that ALL quantitative investigations show this! 
     
    First, your first link does not support your argument. Look at table 4. Accepting their coding of reported perpetrators at face value, even in your own link, NAMs are 68% percent of arrests and only 66% on local TV. As for your second link, it says nothing about the ratio of arrests to TV news features, so this doesn’t support your argument either. It should be noted that mentioning black victims calls attention to black perpetrators — and the link itself agrees that blacks should be mentioned out of proportion to their representation in the population as they commit more crime.  
     
    instead of, e.g., newspapers (much less ‘elite’ papers) and other forms of media.  
     
    Now we get to the heart of the matter. Local news is known to be further to the right — there are only so many Harvard-trained thought police to disperse around the country. But what matters for policy is the national news. And there is no way that the national news or the elite papers report NAM crimes or that TV shows depict NAM offenders at anywhere near their proportion of offenses. Coloring The News settled that matter pretty definitively.

  51. Reports on crime — especially written reports — regularly omit explicit racial breakdowns and racial identifications *as a matter of policy*
     
    …the Associated Press Style Guide is used by almost all papers in the United States. 
     
    Race: Identification by race is pertinent: 
     
    * In biographical and announcement stories, particularly when they involve a feat or appointment that has not routinely been associated with members of a particular race. [I. E. the "first black" to do something good is relevant. The thousandth black to commit an armed robbery is not.]  
     
    * When it provides the reader with a substantial insight into conflicting emotions known or likely to be involved in a demonstration or similar event.  
     
    In some stories that involve a conflict, it is equally important to specify that an issue cuts across racial lines. If, for example, a demonstration by supporters of bussing to achieve racial balance in schools includes a substantial number of whites, that fact should be noted. 
     
    This is the excuse the Associated Press invokes when it gets caught, as it regularly does, failing to report the race of a criminal who is still on the loose, when lives might be saved by knowing what the suspect looks like. 
     
    A particularly bad case recently: a black man who was raping young white men at gunpoint in the Houston area. The point here is that, knowing the race of the suspect, and of his potential victims, said potential victims can take precautions. 
     
    While the AP Stylebook doesn’t say why they treat race as not “pertinent”, a similar stylebook put out by a Canadian paper (the Toronto Globe and Mail) says this: 
     
    “We must be especially scrupulous about avoiding irrelevant references in stories about criminal charges or other matters in which identifying a person’s race or national origin may unfairly associate an entire group with criminal or antisocial activity.” 
     
    It’s that little word ?unfairly? that does it. Many groups are fairly associated with criminal or antisocial activity. And perhaps the public needs to know that. 
     
    And you can easily go show by show to find things like this:  
     
    It might be an interesting factoid for an article that there are more white murderers plotted on Law & Order (all editions) than there are actual white murderers in New York City. 
     
    There were 572 murders in New York City last year. We know that only 10% of violent crimes in NYC were committed by non-Hispanic whites, so if the same is true for homicides in particular, that’s 57 white murders. There are three “Law and Orders,” I think, with about 25 episodes per season with, say, 80% being white. That’s 60 white New York murderers on one set of shows compared to about 57 in all of the real world New York. 
     
    Anyway, I bet it’s close. 
     
    I mean, this is on one level completely obvious. It is taboo to even point out that blacks and Hispanics commit crime at high rates. You can lose your job for even stating the fact (unless you’re blaming the black incarceration rate on white racism, of course). It is taboo to even mention the fact of behavioral differences between groups. Yet you claim that the media is overrepresenting black/Hispanic crime! This just does not pass the smell test.

  52. Glad to hear you say that, Jason. I heartily agree.  
     
    Luke/Jay: what percentage of your neighborhood is black and Hispanic? And have you ever lived in a neighborhood which is majority black/Hispanic?  
     
    As for whether they are “all American citizens”, perhaps 50% of the Hispanics in the US are not US citizens :) 
     
    Right, Obama has an IQ >145, and this is not reasonably up for debate. Magna cum laude Harvard Law. That’s top 10% of the class based on blindly graded exams, at a school where the average undergraduate has an SAT of 1490 (IQ >140).  
     
    Great, but the thing is that just doesn’t awe me. Just about everyone I work with on a daily basis has stats as good or better than that, and you know I’m not blowing smoke when I say that. So do quite a few people who read this blog. I mean, top 10% of graduate students at elite universities? Yeah, I think we’ve got a few of those :) 
     
    Yet I wouldn’t want any of them to be president.  
     
    IQ is genuinely important for just about any *non political* job, because outcome correlations have been established. For political attitudes, however, it is highly arguable as to whether the more intelligent are likely to have beliefs that closely track reality. Mandatory leftist collegiate indoctrination for freshmen is not about teaching “good epistemology”. I’m very familiar with what goes on there — here’s just one of the orientation events: 
     
    http://www.american-pictures.com/english/show/index.html 
     
    A mind shattering experience for colleges, universities, high schools, organizations and conventions  
     
    Shown in 311 American colleges for packed audiences.  
     
    ……American Pictures is known for standing room only crowds. Even at the tenth show at Harvard 700 were present. At the third show in U.C. Davis 2000 came. Students who miss it often drive hundreds of miles to see it on other campuses.  
     
    No program today so visually and “with so lasting impact” depicts the worsening minority crisis of America.  
     
    An experiment in oppression  
     
    The show reveals the psychological costs of racism on both the black and the white mind. Yet it is not only a “show” about the victims of racism, but also an experiment in oppression.  
     
    The technique of the show is to incessantly bombard the audience with a one-sided view from the position of the black underclass, a view in sharp contrast to the Horato Alger myth.  
     
    There is no opportunity for rationalization or justification. A form of oppression ensues which gradually breaks down the defenses of the audience. It effectively creates a momentary role reversal letting the astonished students actually experience the emotions black people often suffer in everyday white society. This opens the way for whites to begin to identify with and understand black reactions.  
     
    That’s what the high IQ are being taught, and that’s why their “epistemology” is all f’d up on h-bd related matters. It’s just like the more educated Muslims being *more* rather than less likely to be religious zealots and terrorists. More IQ does not always lead to more accurate political positions.

  53. So, what supposedly is going through the mind of a given bureaucrat who dabbles in science policies after Obama is elected? 
     
    “By electing Barack Obama, America has proved that it can change. But we are still emerging from our long legacy of racism. It’s especially important that our rapidly advancing research into human biology is not misused and misrepresented to threaten the great progress our society has made.” 
     
    In other words, what they’re thinking is crap. Stalinist boilerplate. The people who say these things genuinely believe them. But they are also genuinely responding to the bandwagon of victory. Exactly the same type of individual, in Nazi Germany, would talk about preserving the precious Aryan heritage, or whatever. There is no country of philosophers. 
     
    Politics is a fight, not an argument. Most people want to be on the side of the winner. This is rational, indeed evolutionary, but it happens at the instinctive level. Simple tribe psychology. Winning energizes and strengthens, losing enervates and weakens.

  54. jmalloy,  
     
    Tell me: if Obama is so smart, why isn’t he with the program on HBD? Or do you think he knows, and is just concealing it? Surely you admit the choice: he is either ignorant, or a liar. Which do you think it is? 
     
    BTW, I am not 100% convinced by the Harvard grades, because I suspect it is very easy to practice affirmative action in blind grading: just grade up students who say the right thing. Sort of like preferential admissions for applicants to “critical race studies.” All of law is politicized, and it is very easy for Communists – excuse me, progressives (my grandparents were CPUSA members, and this is exactly the euphemism they used) – to recognize goodthink and grade each other up for it. 
     
    I can think of no other job where it would be prudent to pick the candidate with an IQ up to 2 SDs lower. 
     
    With all due respect, I suspect that’s because you (a) have no idea what the Presidency is, (b) have no idea what the election means, or (c) both. While you are not alone in this, you are certainly smart enough to know better. 
     
    The President is primarily an actor. His or her job is to read lines written by others. A few times in each election season he is forced to “improv,” in the events described as “debates.” The position is almost entirely ceremonial. It certainly cannot be described as an executive, managerial, or administrative role. 
     
    The President is sometimes called upon to decide disputes between competing members of his staff. He certainly has a more functional role than, say, the Queen of England. But the British monarchy is just more advanced in its progressive loss of authority. Queen Victoria had about as much personal authority as the modern President. 
     
    The primary question settled in an election is which party will control the organ of Washington called “the White House.” The White House sometimes has a fair amount of military authority, especially under emergency circumstances, and especially when its poll ratings are high. In general, however, it is pretty much vestigial. If the White House crept up its own asshole and disappeared, Washington could go on with business as usual for eternity. Democratic administrations, for reasons described below, closely resemble this scenario. 
     
    (I should note that “the neocons,” contrary to your beliefs, have had basically no influence since Rumsfeld left DoD. For instance, the US’s behavior toward Iran will almost certainly be exactly the same under Obama or McCain: flapping its mouth and doing nothing. This is because State has a veto, and State will never consent to a military attack on Iran, or even any serious attempt at sanctions. Similarly, note that Obama and McCain’s “positions” on Afghanistan, Georgia, and even Iraq are exactly the same. This is because the issues are stable, the factions are defined, and as usual the White House has been cut out of the policy process.) 
     
    In any serious conflict with any domestic agency, the White House loses. The civil service’s credo is that public policy must not be contaminated by politics. Public policy is business as usual. Politics is PR nonsense coming from the White House.  
     
    In Democratic administrations, the relationship between the White House and all agencies but the Pentagon is congenial, and the relationship with the Pentagon is adversarial. In Republican administrations, it is the reverse. When the relationship is adversarial, sometimes the White House can block or frustrate agency initiatives. It is never, ever, ever, in a position to make an agency do something it doesn’t want to do. 
     
    Now: why don’t the New York Times, CNN, and the Economist tell you the truth about this? Why doesn’t at least one of them tell you? Duh. Why doesn’t they tell the truth about HBD? 
     
    You are following Conquest’s law: everyone is reactionary on the subjects they understand. You understand HBD, so you know you are being lied to. But you think of it as an exception. Why would it be an exception?

  55. Here’s another way to look at it: think of yourself as voting not based on the actor, but based on the director. Here is Obama’s director. Does this strike you as a savory person? Do you get a good vibe off of David Axelrod, master of astroturf? Is he someone you’d trust to, say, take care of your dog when you are on vacation? 
     
    No, the Republicans are not exactly an army of righteous saints, either. But susceptibility to Republican propaganda doesn’t appear to be your problem here.

  56. “Godless, your facts here are wrong. All quantitative investigations of this show that TV news exaggerates NAM criminality, and inflates white (and black on white) victimization.” 
     
    You’re a reductionist alright. You reduce a set of facts or situations to exactly what you’ve decided fits your philosophy. Picking a president for the reasons you’ve given makes so little sense, that I don’t think argument is worth bothering with here. Dismissing all detrators as “paranoid” precludes rational argument. Of course we’re freaking paranoid. These candidates, or more correctly, their handlers, are capaable of causing TEOTWAWKI (the end of the world as we know it.) Paranoia is a necessary evolutionary instinct, unless you’re clairvoyant. 
     
    Regarding crime, I’m afraid godless is absolutely correct. They actually had someone admit on a Boston radio station that the newspaper he worked for deliberately vetted crime stories before announcing them, making sure the race of the perp was not mentioned if they were black. I’ve mentioned a number of black on white crimes, also black on hispanic and Asian for which the media has a similar if less stringent code of race silence, that no one heard of outside local newspapers. If the perp is black and the victims white, you can predict the limited coverage it’ll get. 
     
    One thing about Obama == maybe he’d make a good president of Kenya. And what with Rev. Wright and afrocentrism and Mrs. O and all– why doesn’t he go to Kenya and run there? It’s a sure win. I’m sure he’s got the right documents ready to go.  
    I think I’ll suggest it.

  57. btw, in the previous comments I am addressing Jason, not godless, in case it’s not clear.

  58. Wow. This video is pretty damning. “Fannie Mae is determined to keep tearing down the barriers to the American Dream…with the help of the Congressional Black Caucus and Barack Obama…It is true that Fannie Mae has lent more money to more minorities and more underserved individuals than any single company in history…keeping on course to serve those who need serving the most”.  
     
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=usvG-s_Ssb0 
     
    Ah yes, Obama’s legendary judgment and epistemology at work! Bribed by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac so that they could keep loaning taxpayer money to insolvent NAMs. By contrast, here’s some *real* judgment:  
     
    http://www.house.gov/paul/congrec/congrec2002/cr071602.htm 
     
    Mr. Speaker, I rise to introduce the Free Housing Market Enhancement Act. This legislation restores a free market in housing by repealing special privileges for housing-related government sponsored enterprises (GSEs). These entities are the Federal National Mortgage Association (Fannie), the Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corporation (Freddie), and the National Home Loan Bank Board (HLBB). According to the Congressional Budget Office, the housing-related GSEs received $13.6 billion worth of indirect federal subsidies in fiscal year 2000 alone. 
     
    One of the major government privileges granted these GSEs is a line of credit to the United States Treasury. According to some estimates, the line of credit may be worth over $2 billion. This explicit promise by the Treasury to bail out these GSEs in times of economic difficulty helps them attract investors who are willing to settle for lower yields than they would demand in the absence of the subsidy. Thus, the line of credit distorts the allocation of capital. More importantly, the line of credit is a promise on behalf of the government to engage in a massive unconstitutional and immoral income transfer from working Americans to holders of GSE debt. 
     
    The Free Housing Market Enhancement Act also repeals the explicit grant of legal authority given to the Federal Reserve to purchase the debt of housing-related GSEs. GSEs are the only institutions besides the United States Treasury granted explicit statutory authority to monetize their debt through the Federal Reserve. This provision gives the GSEs a source of liquidity unavailable to their competitors. 
     
    Ironically, by transferring the risk of a widespread mortgage default, the government increases the likelihood of a painful crash in the housing market. This is because the special privileges of Fannie, Freddie, and HLBB have distorted the housing market by allowing them to attract capital they could not attract under pure market conditions. As a result, capital is diverted from its most productive use into housing. This reduces the efficacy of the entire market and thus reduces the standard of living of all Americans. 
     
    However, despite the long-term damage to the economy inflicted by the government?s interference in the housing market, the government?s policies of diverting capital to other uses creates a short-term boom in housing. Like all artificially-created bubbles, the boom in housing prices cannot last forever. When housing prices fall, homeowners will experience difficulty as their equity is wiped out. Furthermore, the holders of the mortgage debt will also have a loss. These losses will be greater than they would have otherwise been had government policy not actively encouraged over-investment in housing. 
     
    Perhaps the Federal Reserve can stave off the day of reckoning by purchasing GSE debt and pumping liquidity into the housing market, but this cannot hold off the inevitable drop in the housing market forever. In fact, postponing the necessary but painful market corrections will only deepen the inevitable fall. The more people invested in the market, the greater the effects across the economy when the bubble bursts. 
     
    No less an authority than Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan has expressed concern that government subsidies provided to the GSEs make investors underestimate the risk of investing in Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. 
     
    Mr. Speaker, it is time for Congress to act to remove taxpayer support from the housing GSEs before the bubble bursts and taxpayers are once again forced to bail out investors misled by foolish government interference in the market. I therefore hope my colleagues will stand up for American taxpayers and investors by cosponsoring the Free Housing Market Enhancement Act.

  59. Mencius, 
     
    You wrote earlier that the election mattered to the extent that it was a proxy for public opinion. If Obama wins the election 51 to 49, wouldn’t it be a bit silly of bureaucrats to read that as the country wholeheartedly supporting egalitarian progressivism (which, in the first place, is only a portion of Obama’s support)? Wouldn’t the response be marginal at best in regards to HBD?

  60. ben g, 
     
    The result of the election doesn’t just indicate public opinion. It changes public opinion. Or to put it a different way, it is a good indicator of future public opinion. The winners exult, and grow stronger in their faith. The losers feel like they are on the losing side of history, and waver. 
     
    So 51-49 or 49-51 is still an enormous difference. The question is whether the “center” should, or should not, shift to the left. Or more exactly, how far it should shift to the left this year, because leftward is its general direction. 
     
    The basic error of democracy is to treat public opinion not just as infallible or at least somehow sacred, but as always a cause and never an effect. But since the political system has an enormous power to change public opinion, we are looking at a feedback loop. If you think about the specific policy opinions that the Americans of 1908 held, you realize how far this feedback loop can drift. 
     
    Even worse, you realize how many issues 1908 public opinion was right about, and 2008 public opinion is wrong. HBD, obviously, being one. Many factors control the drift, and reality is certainly one of them. But is it one of the most important? I don’t think so.

  61. Mencius, 
     
    I think I just about understand your vision in full here. As you would have it an Obama presidency would serve both as an indicator of public opinion tilting towards progressive egalitarianism and also an indicator of public opinion tilting further that way in the decades to come. 
     
    The mechanism through which you propose this would have real effects on HBD-related policies is through the dynamics of the politics culture of Washington DC, as opposed to direct orders from Obama or his staff. 
     
    Still a couple of things I’m wondering though, before I truly understand your position.  
     
    1.) Would the changes be cataclysmic as gc suggests? If Obama wins, naive-egalitarians would only be a part of his coalition. Sure, his (51 to 49) victory would mean a tilt of history in his favor.. but why would a tilt be enough to completely put politically correct restrictions on neurogenetics, on behavioral genetics, and on population genetics? The first two fields are completely color blind. It’d be pretty drastic for a bureacrat to ban research on cognition. 
     
    Your imaginary beuracrat thinks: “‘By electing Barack Obama, America has proved that it can change. But we are still emerging from our long legacy of racism. It’s especially important that our rapidly advancing research into human biology is not misused and misrepresented to threaten the great progress our society has made.’” 
     
    Doesn’t sound like someone trying to ban color-blind research as gc has suggested. 
     
    My understanding of cultural change in a relatively stable capitalist democracy like the US is that it occurs gradually. Sure, perhaps some beuracrats get some signals from an Obama victory, that seems plausible… but why a 360 change? Historical examples from capitalist democracies would strengthen your point. My guess is that it’s mainly communist/fascist/dictatorship countries where the election of a new prez “jolts” the intelligentsia. The cultural change of a new prez doesn’t have even close to the same effect, or the speed of effect, as a direct order. 
     
    2.) I question your premise that we can predict overall cultural change. You limit Obama’s cultural significance/effect to the label “progressivism” or “universalism” or whatever. That seems like a reasonable short term effect to expect. But who’s to say what the overall, long-term (political-)cultural waves he causes will be? What about stuff like this?

  62. “I say this as someone who believes in hbd, and does not think a tranfer of living standards from whites to NAMs is a bad thing, and wants whites and NAMs to fully co-exist and/or interbreed because I viscerally recognize all of them as American citizens. This visceral tug motivates a lot of the behavior you disdain, and genetic insights will not dent it.”  
     
    I have a brown wife and two brown kids. The transfer of power from whites to NAMs is a disaster of epic proportions. How do my brown kids (1/2 white) benefit from the cluelessness associated with NAM governance? I have seen nothing that indicates a randomly selected group of NAMs can build a first rate government or business or social institution. My wife teaches public school math. Her most recent comment, “I think this job is turning me into a racist.” The differences between the races are huge on a practical level. I think whites and Asians can peacefully and successfully co-exist so long as the Asian population is fairly small.  
     
    “Right, Obama has an IQ >145, and this is not reasonably up for debate. Magna cum laude Harvard Law. That’s top 10% of the class based on blindly graded exams, at a school where the average undergraduate has an SAT of 1490 (IQ >140).”  
     
    Vox Day took a swipe at this estimate:  
    http://voxday.blogspot.com/2008/09/barack-obamas-iq-is-116_18.html 
     
    Regarding GC’s pleas that Obama will seek to destroy this line of inquiry, I am inclined to believe him. The PC police will destroy anything that stands between them and the lies they perpetuate – reference Galileo. Why people believe that humanity has changed is a mystery. Anything that challenges a power structure is open for attack.  
     
    As for Greg Cochran stating that Palin will just be attending funerals, where is the evidence? The following video of Palin, shows a woman focused on her constituents and the “here and now”, and not the dreams of empire. She may not be the brightest bulb in the box, but if she is focused on America, then what else do you need in a President (assuming she would replace McCain in 4-8).  
     
    http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=-2831629878468947508&ei=fc7TSOLAF5KYrQKy2Pm4Ag&q=palin+gubernatorial+debate&hl=en

  63. where is the evidence? 
     
    i haven’t been following this thread, but this is just a retarded comment. greg said that because that’s what the VP traditionally does. it’s so well known that the reference to funerals is just a phrase to sum up the fact that they’re non-entities within most administrations. you can find it in things called books, they are usually housed in libraries if you don’t have a large collection. that’s where the “evidence” is. facts will also give you a nice sense of the “evidence” of which you allude too. greg might be wrong about this specific case because he isn’t what you might call a prophet and things might change, that is known to happen, as “evidence” called history does suggest things change. but his comment doesn’t come purely out of his fertile imagination. your reaction suggests either retardation or ignorance. 
     
    and i think this comment thread is now done. good night and good luck.

a