Saturday, January 30, 2016

The intelligentsia is SO screwed up

Two numbers say it all about how screwed up the intelligentsia is. I typed in two names at Google Scholar: C Darwin and M Foucault. Here are the total number of citations:

Total Google Scholar Citations

Charles Darwin  118,346
Michel Foucault  602,427

Need I say more?

I'll be first in line

From, people can't pay enough for a film that revels in the killing of whites:
In a record setting deal ($17.5 million), Fox Searchlight has acquired the rights to the controversially-titled* slave rebellion biopic The Birth of a Nation. (*The Birth of a Nation was also the title of the 1915 D.W. Griffith film about the founding of the Ku Klux Klan). Nate Parker produced, directed, wrote, and stars in The Birth of a Nation as Nat Turner, the slave who led a rebellion in Virginia in 1831. Even though Fox Searchlight set a record with their $17.5 million winning bid, they actually were not the highest bidders, as both Netflix and producer Byron Allen reportedly submitted larger bids of $20 million each. 
From the Gaurdian's review:
When the revolt does come – a rebellion that saw five dozen slave owners and their families killed – Parker doesn’t leave anything to the imagination. Heads are crushed, stoved in and chopped off. Bodies are burned, teeth are broken. It’s a cathartic blood-letting that recalls the huff and puff of Braveheart, but instead of Mel Gibson splattering the English, it’s Parker hacking at the slave owners.

Friday, January 29, 2016

White voting by ethnic group

According to this video by Stefan Molyneux, white people tend to prefer smaller government. I would agree that whites might be unusual in wanting to protect the individual against the state, but Europeans and all those white Bernie Sanders voters are certainly comfortable with confiscating lots of your money.  Whites seem to be more live-and-let-live, but many of them want to soak the rich just like everyone does.

Whites are so diverse, let's get a little more precise and see which American white groups are majority Republican currently. Based on GSS data:

Percent voting for Romney in 2012

Dutch  76.2
English/Welsh  56.5
Scottish  54.5
French  52.2
German  52.0

Polish 42.4
Irish  42.2
Swedish 42.1
Italians  36.2
Jewish  32.4

Protestants and groups that have lived longer in the United States are more likely to vote Republican. Folks like me (English in my case) might feel a stronger connection to the country's traditions than more recent groups.

I suspect we would be more collectivist like Europe if we were a racially more homogenous country. If the recipients of government assistance look like they could be a cousin, we might be more in favor of it. But if we drum up an image of someone unconnected to ourselves when we think of welfare, we think, why help them? We sense that we are sharing with a competitor.

Thursday, January 28, 2016

The Muslim vote

What idiots ever thought that immigrants would rush to vote for Republicans because they hold traditional values? I'm not sure if they have been idiots or conmen.

Just look at how Muslims have voted in the last few elections. No one should be more socially conservative than Muslims:

Percent voting for the Democratic presidential candidate

2008  Obama 83
2004  Kerry 100
2000  Gore 71
1996  Clinton 100
1992  Clinton 100

Sample sizes are very small, but the picture is very clear.  Even before 9/11, Muslims overwhelmingly voted for the Democrat. When it comes to voting, they don't give a crap about traditional values.

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

How immigrants have voted since 1972

Continuing on the theme of how the foreign-born vote, I used the General Social Survey (GSS) to go back as far as we can on presidential elections. Here are estimates of what percent of them voted for the Republican presidential candidate. I divided it by sex since the GSS over-samples women:

Percent voting for candidate--Men

2012 Romney 26.7
2008 McCain  31.2
2004 Bush  38.3
2000 Bush  41.2
1996 Dole  26.2
1992 Bush  37.4
1988 Bush  70.6
1984 Reagan  56.6
1980 Reagan  43.2
1976 Ford  35.8
1972 Nixon  60.0

Percent Voting for Candidate--Women

2012 Romney  28.9
2008 McCain  23.1
2004 Bush  50.4
2000 Bush  43.6
1996 Dole  19.2
1992 Bush  35.8
1988 Bush  71.1
1984 Reagan  60.6
1980 Reagan  43.2
1976 Ford  42.7
1972 Nixon  57.5

The numbers for the last two cycles are pathetic. You might argue that Republicans did well in the past with immigrants, at least during certain elections, but you'll notice that even though it's a roller coaster, there is an overall tendency towards smaller numbers over the past 40 years. Based on previous analysis, I'll wager that the decline, at least some of it, is due to the browning of immigrant voters. Third Worlders and their descendants love Big Government. The vast majority of immigrants eligible to vote in the 70s and 80s were white, I bet, but much less so now. I'll look at that in the next post.

If you claim that immigrants would vote for Republicans if the candidates were pro-immigrant, then the only bad year should arguably be 2012 with Romney saying illegal immigrants should self-deport. Yet no matter what Republicans do, the immigrant vote has generally stayed well under 50% for more than two decades.

Monday, January 25, 2016

The Stupid Party

So many elite conservatives are lamenting the current embrace of anti-foreigner populism over intellectual conservatism.  A recent example is Matt Lewis' Too Dumb to Fail. His message seems to be that we need to sell smart conservatism to the masses who are inclined to be stupid.

But look at the above map. Five important states--Texas, Florida, Virginia, Arizona, and Nevada--have large foreign-born populations, and I showed previously that our current foreign-born are typically non-white, and some are non-Christian. And those folks and their descendants do not vote Republican. And they never will vote majority Republican.

Who is stupid, exactly?

Sunday, January 24, 2016

I just watched this video for the first time and was reminded of the unique and weird genius of white folks:

Race and fatal gun accidents

One way to measure recklessness is by accidental gun accidents. Research shows that these accidents typically involve young males who are playing around with a firearm, often while drinking.

Using CDC Wonder, I calculated rates for fatal gun accidents (FGAs) by race. I also separated Hispanics versus non-Hispanics. Since some groups have higher percentages of older people who are less likely to have an accident, I focus on those in the 15 to 24 age group.

Fatal Gun Accidents Rates

American Indian  0.8
Blacks  0.7
Whites 0.4
Hispanics  0.3
Asian  0.1

The risk for an accident will be greater for groups with higher levels of gun ownership. According to the General Social Surveys (years 2010, 2012, 2014) home gun ownership looks like this: Amerindians, 42%; blacks, 17%; whites, 40%; Hispanics, 19%; Asians, 16%.  If we adjust for exposure by dividing accident rate by the proportion of the group with guns, we get this:

Fatal Gun Accident Index

Blacks  4.2
American Indians  1.9
Hispanics  1.6
Whites  1.0
Asians  0.6

So recklessness among groups is highest for blacks and lowest for Asians.  In fact, the index for blacks is 7 times that of Asians.  I think I hear Phil Rushton's voice from the other side: "See, I told you so."

The high rate among Amerindians is also consistent with Cochran and Harpending's contention that these people have not been selected for tameness like other groups by many centuries of state control.

Monday, January 18, 2016

Why idolize a socialist?

Why do conservatives idolize MLK just as much as the left does?  Conservatives consider "Capitalism is good" to be a "duh" statement, but MLK was clearly a free-enterprise-hating socialist.


 “The evils of capitalism are as real as the evils of militarism and evils of racism.”

“Again we have deluded ourselves into believing the myth that Capitalism grew and prospered out of the Protestant ethic of hard word and sacrifice. The fact is that Capitalism was build on the exploitation and suffering of black slaves and continues to thrive on the exploitation of the poor – both black and white, both here and abroad.”

 “The problems of racial injustice and economic injustice cannot be solved without a radical redistribution of political and economic power.”


“I imagine you already know that I am much more socialistic in my economic theory than capitalistic… [Capitalism] started out with a noble and high motive… but like most human systems it fell victim to the very thing it was revolting against. So today capitalism has out-lived its usefulness.”

“And one day we must ask the question, ‘Why are there forty million poor people in America? And when you begin to ask that question, you are raising questions about the economic system, about a broader distribution of wealth.’ When you ask that question, you begin to question the capitalistic economy. And I’m simply saying that more and more, we’ve got to begin to ask questions about the whole society…”

“Capitalism forgets that life is social. And the kingdom of brotherhood is found neither in the thesis of communism nor the antithesis of capitalism, but in a higher synthesis.”

“Call it democracy, or call it democratic socialism, but there must be a better distribution of wealth within this country for all God’s children.”

“We must recognize that we can’t solve our problem now until there is a radical redistribution of economic and political power… this means a revolution of values and other things. We must see now that the evils of racism, economic exploitation and militarism are all tied together… you can’t really get rid of one without getting rid of the others… the whole structure of American life must be changed. America is a hypocritical nation and [we] must put [our] own house in order.”

“You can’t talk about solving the economic problem of the Negro without talking about billions of dollars. You can’t talk about ending the slums without first saying profit must be taken out of slums. You’re really tampering and getting on dangerous ground because you are messing with folk then. You are messing with captains of industry. Now this means that we are treading in difficult water, because it really means that we are saying that something is wrong with capitalism.”

“[W]e are saying that something is wrong … with capitalism…. There must be better distribution of wealth and maybe America must move toward a democratic socialism. Call it what you may, call it democracy, or call it democratic socialism, but there must be a better distribution of wealth within this country for all of God’s children.There must be a better distribution of wealth and maybe America must move toward a democratic socialism.”

“If America does not use her vast resources of wealth to end poverty and make it possible for all of God’s children to have the basic necessities of life, she too will go to hell.”

Sunday, January 17, 2016

Many not offended by Trump's comments about Muslims

Reuters asked respondents if, "Donald Trump's recent comments about Muslims offend me." While 70% of Democrats said yes, only 27% percent of Republicans agreed.  Less than half (43%) of independents, perhaps the most important group for deciding the next election, said they were offended.

While elites, including moderate Republicans, flipped out over the idea of temporarily banning Muslims, about half of Americans were not upset about it. Trump has shown more clearly than anyone before that elites and ordinary Americans are very far apart on America First issues.

I wondered if Trump hurt himself with independents, but fewer than half seem to care. If we limit independents to those with at most some college, feeling offended drops to 37%.  So Trump jacks up many voters who feel like American leadership cares more about hostile strangers than its own people, while not turning off too many people that he needs to win.  He seems to be light years ahead of Republican strategists and pundits. And he makes it look easy.  

(Hat tip to Audacious for the link!)

Tuesday, January 12, 2016

Poor nutrition and antisocial behavior

We emphasize genes on this blog, but far be it from me to dismiss the environment as sociologists dismiss genetic influence.  This study shows that even after we control for genes and shared environment, poor nutrition predicts antisocial behavior among children.  So feed your kiddies good stuff.

Sunday, January 10, 2016

Global support for sharia

Here's a Pew graph.  We see that with the exception of Southern-Eastern Europe and Central Asia, support for sharia is normative in regions throughout the world.  Even in a place like Indonesia, 72% are in favor it. 

Race and belief in evolution

When people cite stats that seem to show that Americans are dumb, I suspect that many people get a mental image of a redneck.  I discussed in an earlier post that some people think Republicans are dumb even though the data contradicts this. In all probability, white liberals are comparing themselves with white hicks and conveniently forgetting that a big chunk of their party is made up of low IQ blacks and Latinos.  I'm willing to bet that with controversial attitudes that suggest intelligence or the lack of it, non-Asian minorities often have the worst numbers. Let's try belief in evolution as a first try.

General Social Survey respondents were asked in 2012, "According to the theory of evolution, human beings, as we know them today, developed from earlier species of animals. Is that true or false?" Here are the answers for white, blacks and people of Mexican ancestry:

Percent answering false (N = 390)

Black  33.3
Mexican  27.3
White  18.4

Blacks are almost twice as likely as whites to believe we did not develop from earlier species. People of Mexican descent reject science here at 1 1/2 times the rate of whites.

By the way, these percentages are lower than the--what--40 percent number cited as the percent of Americans who reject evolution.

Thursday, January 07, 2016

Jews ain't all that

In terms of religious affiliation, Jews are the smartest, right?  Not so fast.  I'll use the vocabulary quiz from the General Social Survey again as a proxy for IQ. I calculated the mean score for whites--IQ is affected a great deal by the racial composition of the group--but will only list selected religions. (The GSS continues to piss me off for not asking if one is Mormon--my favorite group.)

Mean Vocabulary Score

Buddhist 7.82
Jewish 7.60
Episcopalian 7.38
Hindu 7.17
United Presbyterian 6.98
None 6.70
United Methodist 6.31
American Lutheran 6.34
Catholic 6.21
Christian 5.88
Southern Baptist 5.65
Orthodox Christian 5.47
Muslim 4.73

The Buddhists kick butt.  Jews come in second.  America's former ruling faith--Episcopalian--is third. Ouch, poor Islam is at the bottom of the pack.

Wednesday, January 06, 2016

Sociology is scientifically bankrupt

One of the themes I'd like to stress is that sociology is untrustworthy among the social sciences. Not only do sociologists dismiss biological sources of behavior, many of them do not even believe in the scientific method and see research as simply a way to advance their politics. Robert Trivers is right: the more social the discipline, the more corrupt.

Let's take a glaring example. A standard race study goes something like this: "We will use opposition to affirmative action as our measure of racism among whites. This variable is correlated in our data with voting Republican, so we therefore conclude that racism is widespread among Republicans."  Or they use the same reasoning with being in favor of the death penalty: "If whites favor it, it is because they hate blacks." Research like this appears in the prestigious journals all the time.

Let's do a simple validity check to see if there is something to what they are doing. They are claiming that underneath conservative political attitudes lies hatred for blacks.  You can't simply ask whites if they hate blacks because nobody ever admits to it. So you use a proxy which just happens to be an attitude held by your political enemies. If these attitudes are proxies, then they should correlate highly with a more direct measure of  racism.

I would argue the best question available on surveys that taps not liking blacks goes like this: "In general, how warm or cool do you feel towards African Americans?" If political attitudes are good substitute measures, they should correlate strongly with answers to this question. Keep in mind that the correlation should be .8 or higher to be a good proxy. 

I did correlations with General Social Survey data--a sample of 694 whites. What is the size of the affirmative action/coolness association? A whopping .10. And for coolness and the death penalty? An enormous .13. Trivial correlations, both of them. Almost unrelated. These conservative political attitudes are worthless as proxies of racism. 

So here's your situation, conservatives: Your taxpayer dollars support these charlatans who abuse science to vilify and undermine you. And you pay an obscene amount of money to have your kids learn at the feet of these propagandists. 

As a sociologist, I take no pleasure in agreeing with Razib's recent Tweet about sociology: "End it, don't mend it." 

Sunday, January 03, 2016

Are Republicans dumb and uneducated?

Man, it's weird dusting this thing off.  I still don't have time for a blog, but the Presidential election cycle always gets me jazzed up and wanting to see what the data have to tell us about interesting questions, often political questions.

With the Trump phenomenon, the old "Republicans are stupid people" is back with a vengeance, but the politically correct twist I've heard more of lately is that they are "uneducated."  So is that true?

The General Social Survey asked people who they voted for in 2012.  Here's is the mean vocabulary score--a decent proxy for IQ--for the two groups:

Mean Vocabulary Score

Voted for Romney (n = 421): 6.45

Voted for Obama (n = 615): 6.23

Romney voters were slightly smarter than Obama voters. Now, let's look at mean education:

Mean Years of Education

Voted for Romney (n = 421) 14.45

Voted for Obama (n = 615) 14.23

Again, Romney voters are slightly more educated. It's pretty clear that Trump fans are more working-class than others planning to vote Republican, but liberals constantly make the mistake of thinking that "no more Muslims" is a sign that someone is dumb, when in fact it is a sign that a person happens to not be part of the crowd that is convinced that liberal ideas are a signal of intelligence and enlightenment, and therefore must be adopted. Liberals think these people are sheep, but as Noam Chomsky once said, no group is more sheepish than liberals.