Saturday, July 25, 2009

Race to the top of the pile of bullshit

Obama unveils four-billion-dollar education plan

WASHINGTON — President Barack Obama launched a competition to improve US educational standards, a key part of his campaign promise to make the country's school system the best in the world.

The program, dubbed the "Race to the Top," will encourage US states to compete for 4.35 billion dollars in federal grants with the goal of encouraging them to improve school systems.

Obama said he was "issuing a challenge" to education professionals, state and local officials, even parents and students throughout the country to meet "a few key benchmarks for reform" to obtain the grants.

"If you set and enforce rigorous and challenging standards and assessments; if you put outstanding teachers at the front of the classroom; if you turn around failing schools -- your state can win a Race to the Top grant." ...

Is "Race to the Top" meant to be a double entendre?

It is so difficult to read material about improving education because it is so hackneyed, and I have to live with it every day at work. When I hear a new round of enthusiasm about bringing up the left hand of the bell curve to match the right hand, I think of the study I read about in Straight Talk about Mental Tests in which it was found that the standard deviation among children raised in an Israeli kibbutz was 15 points. Are you getting the meaning of that? Children who were raised communally were no more similar to each other on IQ than if you picked two random children out of the general population. Something as radical as the kibbutz can't even reduce IQ inequality.

By the way, if you're short on cash and don't have access to academic journals, buy the old classics online--I like for this kind of thing. You can get a beauty like Bias in Mental Testing for like a buck if you look. You might think that it's a waste of time to read old stuff, but trust me, Arthur Jensen 30 years ago is ten times better than any sociology research from 2009.

And tell friends and family about these kinds of facts. Over the years, I've talked to most of my relatives and friends, and unless they're hardcore liberal, white folks will accept this stuff. (I'm sure other non-whites will too.) Just recently I told my mom that the black mean IQ is around 85, and she about fell off her chair. She couldn't believe it was that low. It was hard for me to believe that a 63 year old woman had never heard that before, but I imagine the percentage of people who have is low.


TAN said...

Ron, I also work in Education, and am continually bombarded by ideas that are going to "raise the bar" and "end the test gaps".
Of course this never happens, and these programs just fade into oblivion, replaced with more programs that accomplish nothing. If you bring up anything at all that might have to do with the Bell Curve, or statistical evidence that contradicts the status quo, all hell breaks loose, and people get so lathered up, you have to basically back down and leave the area. It's really sad.

Alice said...

Who would tell people the truth about low black intelligence? The media? Schools? Ethnic studies professors?

Not even Fox News or most right wing talk show hosts will stray that far from PC dogma.

Most people live in a fantasy world. The Obama media and a zombie culture intends to keep it that way.

cromapolo said...

"Just recently I told my mom that the black mean IQ is around 85, and she about fell off her chair"

When I first found that out, my reaction was more like "well, duh!!"

Anonymous said...

It doesn't matter that blacks have an average IQ of about 85. What really matters is that half of whites have an IQ below 100.

If "Human Biodiversity" become openly acknowledged it would lead to more socialism.

It would destroy the myth that "effort" and "hard work" are the fruits of success. And those whites with an IQ below 100 who vote will NO LONGER accept the idea of a meritocracy that puts them in the bottom. I expect them to vote -- if they do bother to vote -- for more redistribution policies themselves.

Anonymous said...


I deeply hope that most whites will come to understand that new educational initiatives are merely going to be attempts to "dumb down" middle and lower class whites more than anything else.

I hope parents understand that online resources for math, science, and history (and reading) are essential for their kids success in adulthood. I dont trust the "educators" for a minute. Bill Ayers is a "educator".

Ive gotten to spend some time around the white underclass as of late (every family has got one). Oh my god, those young girls (who speak in ghetto-ize) are stupid. I mean STOOPID-stupid. This didn't happen by accident. Its influenced by the larger culture/educational environment largely shaped by liberal democrats.

Anonymous said...

Well, there is the fundamental problem that these people rarely address, which is that "raising the bar" will, if anything WIDEN the gaps in testing. Not really the outcome they're aiming for, but it's all bullshit anyway, so whatever.

I had the eye-opening experience you describe when I was in grad school. Growing up, I'd more or less bought the notion that typical black educational outcomes were completely the product of a legacy of racism combined with culture (i.e. people with few educational opportunities tend to not value or pursue education, even once it's made available to them). However, as a grad student, I started doing standardized testing development for the state. This acquainted me with some statistics associated with educational testing. When I learned that the average black IQ was 85, I had two reactions:

1. A gap of this size can't be explained away by cultural factors alone.

2. Most black students aren't really capable of doing high-level academic work. It sounds harsh to put it this way, and even now, I sort of struggle internaly to find a more "benign" way of saying it, but, for example someone with an IQ of 95, much less 85, really doesn't have a place in a legitimate university program. That's what I mean.

Name withheld for fear of reprisal

FuturePundit said...

The arguments for higher school standards and all sorts of educational initiatives are all so incredibly ahistorical. They act like this hasn't all been tried before. The ones who are older and who have been in education for decades have got to know they are lying. But they don't want to believe the truth. So they opt to believe lies, lies, lies.

What we need are better ways for smart people to avoid dealing with the effects that the fantasies have on schools. We need more video recordings of lectures and online tests. Just plain avoid the Idiocracy. Work around it.

What I want to know: How will the deniers react once lots of genetic variations are identified that govern IQ and those variations are measured in frequency in different populations? Is there no point at which they accept reality?

FuturePundit said...

One other note: $4 billion is nothing compared to the figures Obama is throwing around for health care spending. If he really believes that higher educational spending will lift up the NAMs then why isn't he proposing more for education than for health? Most people aren't sick. Most people are dumb though.

Anonymous said...

--I deeply hope that most whites will come to understand that new educational initiatives are merely going to be attempts to "dumb down" middle and lower class whites more than anything else.--

Starve the system. White people need to get ther kids out of Public Ed ASAP. Leave it for the NAMs. Homeschool, private school, whatever. Public Ed is now geared for NAMs and detrimental to whites. When your children's lessons are done in the morning, then school them in firearms, survival, a trade/craft, etc. in the afternoon.

Anonymous said...

By refusing to acknowledge the truth with respect to IQ and Nature, the political classes get to continue the education boondoggle.

OneSTDV said...

Unfortunately, too many people agree with him.

In GSS: look up stats for "NATEDUCY".

Only 5.1 percent think we spend too much on education.

DGL said...


The reason why a lot of people might not think 'we' spend too much on education is because of all the hoopla every year about teachers not making enough money...and because who wants to be the old codger who doesn't "care about kids' educations".

Truth is, a lot of the money goes to administration and sinkhole programs designed to magically raise IQ points.

In a good area with the right demographics, public schools 'ain't' bad.

Ron Guhname said...

And teachers make plenty. People who only work three-fourths of the year should get three-fourths of a salary.

DGL said...

teachers make plenty. People who only work three-fourths of the year should get three-fourths of a salary.

Good point. I'm going to tell that to my complaining friends and relatives who are teachers for some lulz.

cromapolo said...

"And teachers make plenty. People who only work three-fourths of the year should get three-fourths of a salary"

Beware on telling that to some super-idealistic, ready-to-change-the-world education major (likely a young female). These types like to make people think that they're guiding future minds for rations.
Also be ready to dodge when you tell them that they work three-fourths of the year.
When some of these ed-majors tell me that they'll be teaching in an urban, public school, I just utter my most sardonic laugh and walk away.

OneSTDV said...


"When some of these ed-majors tell me that they'll be teaching in an urban, public school, I just utter my most sardonic laugh and walk away."

My friend did student teaching in a great suburban school district. She raved about how much she loved the kids the entire year and how she was so excited to start teaching for real.

She got a job with the NYC School District teaching 5th grade. She was in a decent school, not the worst, but not the best. After one year, she quit to become a reading aid (you help individual students with their reading skills).

Anonymous said...

I am SHOCKED by the comments on this blog. All of the comments on this thing are a direct product of racism. I can't believe someone who went to grad school thinks that a low average IQ of blacks means that they must be born that way. I grew up in Detroit which has a terrible terrible education system, and most of the kids in those schools are black. how the hell wouldn't they have a low IQ? Has no one ever taken a class about social injustice? it is very possible to account for that low of an IQ through generations of abuse and racism. Are the thousands of very intelligent and successful blacks not proof enough that it is not some inherent racial handicap? no. it is dumb white people like you that think whites are born superior. to believe that blacks are born inferior to whites is shockingly similar to hitler's views. I am shocked and disgusted by this website. you should all be ashamed of yourselves. take your white kids out of public school? yes great idea. let's leave all the minorities to rot in awful schools and then take their low IQs as evidence of them being an inferior race. idots. you are all complete total racist idiots.

Anonymous said...

i'm a psychology major and i have studied extensively how IQ tests are made. they were first developed to assess childrens academic standing. there is no way to objectively judge someones true intelligence. IQ tests measure ACADEMIC ability. Therefore, measuring a group that has been disenfranchised in the education system for centuries with an IQ test will undoubtedly show that they have low IQs. this does not mean in any way that they are stupid, it means that they do not have the tools necessary to solve problems like the ones in IQ tests because they are COMPLETELY ACADEMICALLY BASED. everyone commenting here is white, am i wrong? thats because the minorities are probably out working 3 different jobs to make a third of what you make in a day. while still having time to sit on the internet and say awful things about them.