Thursday, June 20, 2002

Ignorance is Strength (?) Send this entry to: Spurl Ma.gnolia Digg Newsvine Reddit

Ignorance is Strength (?) The normally reasonable Steve Sailer has recently made an argument that I find indefensible in his review of Connerly's Racial Privacy Initiative. To wit:

As a stat geek, I'd love to be able to download all the Census data sorted by religion. But as an American, I'm glad I can't. There are some huge disparities among the followers of the various religions in America, but we think about these differences much less than we think about differences among categories about which the government collects statistics. And that's good for American unity.

This endorsement of intentional ignorance seems positively Orwellian, and I was very surprised to see Sailer voice this in VDare, of all places. I disagree with VDare on many issues, but I do give them credit for openly discussing the taboo topic of race. Sailer and VDare have long recognized that ignoring race differences or shoving them under the table will not make them go away, which makes this recent reversal all the more puzzling. Perhaps Sailer is inclined to give Connerly the benefit of the doubt for his adroit advocacy of Prop. 209, a piece of legislation that employed similarly "color-blind" language as a Trojan Horse for anti-affirmative action legislation. At that time (as now), open discussion of the academic inadequacy of "underrepresented minorities" was taboo. In fact, it was (and is) considered "immoral" to even broach the idea that the races were not equal in their abilities. Thus, merciless meritocrats like myself had no recourse but to invoke the nonsensical "color-blindness" principle to give a "moral" sheen to the proposition. This act of rhetorical jujitsu turned the flawed "equality" axiom of the multiculturalist left into a convenient truncheon with which to bludgeon the identity politicians at the polls. Connerly's political masterstroke earned him respect from the Roger Clegg/Jonah Goldberg school of neoconservatives who believe in the "equality" axiom. It also earned him the undying hatred of the academic left. The problem now is that Connerly has started to swallow his own propaganda. Perhaps he believed it all along - the difference is immaterial. Like a snake turning on its handler, the axiom of "equality" which evolutionary conservatives used to mask our true positions has turned around to bite us. Now we must make common cause with the multiculturalist left to defeat the RPI. It will be an uphill battle - so why fight it? The reason is because the RPI and Prop. 209 are DIFFERENT. The distinction lies in the fact that Prop. 209 is beneficial for society and the RPI is harmful to society. Had universities actually followed the spirit of Prop. 209, we would be less likely to give engineering degrees to those who will endanger the public through their shoddy grasp of mathematics and physics. In practice the adherence to Prop. 209 has been demonstrably inconsistent. The RPI, on the other hand, would severely damage the availability of the data necessary to conduct a rational discussion on race. The only way to have a reasonable discussion about racial matters is to justify hypotheses with quantitative arguments. Such arguments require the sorts of large data sets that only the government can collect with even a semblance of impartiality. Eliminating the most reliable source of data means that more partisan organizations will step into the statistical vacuum. It is already hard enough to find people who agree that the FBI has no interest in framing thousands of black criminals and letting thousands of white criminals go free. Imagine how much harder it will be when organizations like Fairtest and Stormfront have an incentive to produce "data" of their own, while more moderate organizations are considered "immoral" for doing so. In Conclusion: The Racial Privacy Initiative is as idiotic as "anti-profiling" legislation because it intentionally avoids the truth that there are real and significant biological and behavioral differences between races.

posted by godlesscapitalist | 6/20/2002 06:10:00 PM | |

Principles of Population Genetics
Genetics of Populations
Molecular Evolution
Quantitative Genetics
Evolutionary Quantitative Genetics
Evolutionary Genetics
Molecular Markers, Natural History, and Evolution
The Genetics of Human Populations
Genetics and Analysis of Quantitative Traits
Epistasis and Evolutionary Process
Evolutionary Human Genetics
Mathematical Models in Biology
Evolutionary Genetics: Case Studies and Concepts
Narrow Roads of Gene Land 1
Narrow Roads of Gene Land 2
Narrow Roads of Gene Land 3
Statistical Methods in Molecular Evolution
The History and Geography of Human Genes
Population Genetics and Microevolutionary Theory
Population Genetics, Molecular Evolution, and the Neutral Theory
Genetical Theory of Natural Selection
Evolution and the Genetics of Populations
Genetics and Origins of Species
Tempo and Mode in Evolution
Causes of Evolution
The Great Human Diasporas
Bones, Stones and Molecules
Natural Selection and Social Theory
Journey of Man
Mapping Human History
The Seven Daughters of Eve
Evolution for Everyone
Why Sex Matters
Mother Nature
Grooming, Gossip, and the Evolution of Language
R.A. Fisher, the Life of a Scientist
Sewall Wright and Evolutionary Biology
Origins of Theoretical Population Genetics
A Reason for Everything
The Ancestor's Tale
Dragon Bone Hill
Endless Forms Most Beautiful
The Selfish Gene
Adaptation and Natural Selection
Nature via Nurture
The Symbolic Species
The Imitation Factor
The Red Queen
Out of Thin Air
Evolutionary Dynamics
The Origin of Species
The Descent of Man
Age of Abundance
The Darwin Wars
The Evolutionists
The Creationists
Of Moths and Men
The Language Instinct
How We Decide
Predictably Irrational
The Black Swan
Fooled By Randomness
Descartes' Baby
Religion Explained
In Gods We Trust
Darwin's Cathedral
A Theory of Religion
The Meme Machine
Synaptic Self
The Mating Mind
A Separate Creation
The Number Sense
The 10,000 Year Explosion
The Math Gene
Explaining Culture
Origin and Evolution of Cultures
Dawn of Human Culture
The Origins of Virtue
Prehistory of the Mind
The Nurture Assumption
The Moral Animal
Born That Way
No Two Alike
Survival of the Prettiest
The Blank Slate
The g Factor
The Origin Of The Mind
Unto Others
Defenders of the Truth
The Cultural Origins of Human Cognition
Before the Dawn
Behavioral Genetics in the Postgenomic Era
The Essential Difference
Geography of Thought
The Classical World
The Fall of the Roman Empire
The Fall of Rome
History of Rome
How Rome Fell
The Making of a Christian Aristoracy
The Rise of Western Christendom
Keepers of the Keys of Heaven
A History of the Byzantine State and Society
Europe After Rome
The Germanization of Early Medieval Christianity
The Barbarian Conversion
A History of Christianity
God's War
Fourth Crusade and the Sack of Constantinople
The Sacred Chain
Divided by the Faith
The Reformation
Pursuit of Glory
Albion's Seed
From Plato to Nato
China: A New History
China in World History
Genghis Khan and the Making of the Modern World
Children of the Revolution
When Baghdad Ruled the Muslim World
The Great Arab Conquests
After Tamerlane
A History of Iran
The Horse, the Wheel, and Language
A World History
Guns, Germs, and Steel
The Human Web
Plagues and Peoples
A Concise Economic History of the World
Power and Plenty
A Splendid Exchange
Contours of the World Economy 1-2030 AD
Knowledge and the Wealth of Nations
A Farewell to Alms
The Ascent of Money
The Great Divergence
Clash of Extremes
War and Peace and War
Historical Dynamics
The Age of Lincoln
The Great Upheaval
What Hath God Wrought
Freedom Just Around the Corner
Throes of Democracy
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A Beautiful Math
When Genius Failed
Catholicism and Freedom
American Judaism

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