Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Ethnicity and politics: Wilmot Robertson's argument in The Dispossessed Majority is that American politics is basically a conflict between the white majority and a coalition of white minorities and non-whites. What do General Social Survey data tell us about this?

I limited the sample to roughly the top 10% in terms of occupational prestige in order to focus on the most influential people. Here is the ranking of people who identify themselves as Democrat (strong, not strong, independent--near):

Percent Democrat

Blacks 76.7
Jews 73.6
Mexicans 60.8
Scots 52.5
Danes 51.5
Italians 48.0
East Indians 47.5
Norwegians 46.7

USA 45.6

Irish 44.6
American Indians 42.6
Swedes 39.6
Chinese 37.8
English/Welsh 36.2
Germans 33.4

(Keep in mind that these numbers do not include independents and members of other parties who are liberal). While you can seen a pattern here of blacks, Jews, and Mexicans at the top, and traditional, large white groups at the bottom--English and Germans--the reality is much messier than Robertson's characterization. First, there is a real split in most groups, so ethnicity is frequently not an important factor. Second, Scots, Danes, and Norwegians should not be on the top half of the list, and the Irish, American Indians, and Chinese should not be on the bottom half, if Robertson were right.

Not only are white groups generally split, but many non-white groups are. And one might expect more conformity among high-status members of ethnic groups, but the numbers shown here still generally show a split.

Now, it might be that the numbers would be a little sharper if we looked at actual voting. The sample sizes are too small for the high-status people in each group, but looking at blacks and Jews, 87.7% of elite blacks and 74.1% of elite Jews voted for Gore in 2000. So looking at voting instead of party affiliation shows a higher number for blacks but not for Jews. I would call 88% a rough consensus, but it's harder to say that about 74%, and we can't say it about any of these other groups. There is indeed a connection between ethnicity and politics, but Robertson exaggerates its importance.

Saturday, February 24, 2007

Arthur Jensen, evil: Richard Dawkins, naughty

Since 1972, the General Social Survey has asked almost 30,000 Americans if a person who is against church and religion should be allowed to speak in public. In 1972, it was 66.6%, and by 2004--the most recent year available--it was up to 77.5%. It's an encouraging trend, but I'm not sure that it's a reflection of a growing appreciation of free speech as a general principle. Over the years, people have also been asked if a racist should be allowed to speak, and the number has not budged from the 62.0% observed 35 years ago. So it looks like this is simply a matter of more people being comfortable with anti-religion. These numbers also tell us that racism has become more of a taboo than making statements against religion. This is why Arthur Jensen is much more a villain than Richard Dawkins.

Friday, February 23, 2007

Married housekeepers are happier than footloose-and-fancy-free college girls: Of the female professors I work with, none has ever been married except for one who married at about age 40. One recently said that she doesn't even like to be tied to one man. Now, everyone is different, and these women know themselves better than I do, but if they are teaching their female students in general to follow in their footsteps, then they are hurting these girls more than any gender traditionalist could.

Women respondents were asked by the General Social Survey how happy they are, and information was also taken on their marital and job status. I calculated the mean happiness score for each marital/job category (35 categories total). Listed below are the five happiest groups:

Top five mean happiness score

1. Married, retired 1.38*
2. Married, working part-time 1.35
3. Married, keeping house 1.34
4. Married, working full-time 1.34
5. Married, student 1.32

There were seven never-married categories, and not one broke the top 5, not even "never married, student." A married housekeeper in the supposed trap of dependency and domesticity is happier than the totally free college girl.

I suspect that this nobody Andro-American knows more about female psychology than your typical feminist does.

Oh, but I can see it already: someone will write me saying that married women lie about how happy they are. We all know suburban housewives are as phony as a 3 dollar bill, right?

*These numbers are actually 3 - the mean score so that high scores indicate greatest happiness.

Thursday, February 22, 2007

IQ and residential mobility: Using General Social Survey data on more than 27,000 whites, I calculated average IQs based on vocabulary tests scores for each region of the country the person lived in when age 16, and by their current region of residence. I wanted to learn more about the residential mobility patterns of smart vs. dumb people. Here I list the top 10 smartest groups, followed by the least intelligent:

Top ten IQs by residential status:

1. MTN-->NE,* 123
2. ESC-->NE, 119
3. WSC-->MA, 118
4. PAC-->NE, 116
5. WSC-->NE, 115
6. SA-->NE, 115
7. WNC-->NE, 115
8. ENC-->NE, 112
9. ESC-->MA, 112
10. WNC-->MA, 111

Bottom ten

1. ESC-->PAC, 94
2. ESC--ESC, 95
3. ESC-->WSC, 96
4. WSC-->ENC, 97
5. PAC-->ESC, 98
6. ENC-->ESC, 98
8. ESC-->ENC, 98
9. SA--SA, 98
10. WSC--WSC, 99

*The first acronym is where you lived when you were 16; the second is where you are now.

NE=New England
MA=Middle Atlantic
ENC=East North Central
WNC=West North Central
SA=South Atlantic
ESC=East South Central
WSC=West South Central

So, the smartest groups moved to New England or the Mid-Atlantic, and were likely to come from regions far from the Northeast and with little concentration of cognitive elites of their own. The least intelligent groups either were born in the South and stayed put there, or either moved from the South or to it. The East South Central region popped up many times among the bottom 10.

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Bias against the rich takes another knock: We all know that if your born into a rich family, your future is guaranteed, right? Some Americans go from rags to riches, but Daddy will make sure the opposite never happens. The General Social Survey asked respondents about their occupations and those of their fathers. I looked at the 262 men whose fathers had prestige scores in the top 10%. If the "silver spoon" hypothesis is correct, all these guys should have prestige scores at least as high as Pop's. On the other hand, if the process were purely random, only 10% of the sons would equal Dad's accomplishments. So what do the data tell us? Only 26.4% of these guys equalled or surpassed their childhood status. Basically three-quarters of them were riches to rags (well, not rags usually, but you get the picture).

Of course, a person is not surprised by this if he is familiar with the idea of the regression to the mean, but in our innumerate society, few are. (By the way, "he" was used intentionally in the last sentence).

(And don't think that I'm some richie trying to defend my class: I'm the son of a maintenance man.)

Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Even more on IQ and crime: The discussion on the relationship between intelligence and illegality has been interesting. One reason, apart from the GSS data, why I'm skeptical about the claim that IQ is a powerful determinant of criminal behavior is that it does not pass my basic test for any theory of crime: is it consistent with the two risk factors we are most certain about--gender and age. Males are much more criminal than females, but they are not more stupid. Youthfulness is one of the best predictors of street crime, but IQ doesn't grow with age, rather it drops off slowly.

I was also interested in calculating the correlation between IQ and thinking that cheating on taxes is wrong (1=not all, 4=very wrong). It turns out to be .11 for whites, consistent with other analyses I have seen: the correlation is reliable but weak.

Monday, February 19, 2007

Weird Al Yankovic: It seems that Weird Al Yankovic has figured out how a white guy can say in an acceptable way what race realists are marginalized for saying: that whites, on average, are smarter than blacks, and that blacks are more likely to be street criminals.

White and Nerdy (a rap song)

You see me mowin' my front lawn
I know they're all thinkin' I'm so
White and nerdy

Think I'm just too white and nerdy
Think I'm just too white and nerdy
Can't you see I'm white and nerdy
Look at me I'm white and nerdy
I wanna roll with the gangstas
But so far they all think I'm too
White and nerdy

Think I'm just too white and nerdy
Think I'm just too white and nerdy
I'm just too white and nerdy
Really, really white and nerdy

First in my class here at MIT
Got skills, I'm a champion at D&D
M.C. Escher, that's my favorite M.C.
Keep you're 40, I'll just have an Earl Grey tea
My rims never spin, to the contrary
You'll find that they're quite stationary
All of my action figures are cherry
Stephen Hawking's in my library

My MySpace page is all totally pimped out
Got people beggin' for my top eight spaces
Yo, I know pi to a thousand places
Ain't got no grills but I still wear braces
I order all of my sandwiches with mayonnaise
I'm a wiz at Minesweeper, I could play for days
Once you've see my sweet moves, you're gonna stay amazed
My fingers movin' so fast I'll set the place ablaze

There's no killer app I haven't run (run)
At Pascal, well I'm number one (one)
Do vector calculus just for fun
I ain't got a gat, but I got a soldering gun (what?)
Happy Days is my favorite theme song
I could sure kick your butt in a game of ping pong
I'll ace any trivia quiz you bring on
I'm fluent in JavaScript as well as Klingon

Here's the part I sing on...

You see me roll on my Segway
I know in my heart they think I'm
White and nerdy

Think I'm just too white and nerdy
Think I'm just too white and nerdy
Can't you see I'm white and nerdy
Look at me I'm white and nerdy

I'd like to roll with the gangstas
Although it's apparent I'm too
White and nerdy

Think I'm just too white and nerdy
Think I'm just too white and nerdy
I'm just too white and nerdy
How'd I get so white and nerdy

I been browsin', inspectin' X-Men comics
You know I collect 'em
The pens in my pocket, I must protect them
My ergonomic keyboard never leaves me bored
Shoppin' online for deals on some writable media
I edit Wikipedia
I memorized Holy Grail really well
I can recite it right now and have you R-O-T-F-L-O-L

I got a business doing websites (websites)
When my friends need some code, who do they call?
I do HTML for 'em all
Even made a homepage for my dog, yo
I got myself a fanny pack
They were havin' a sale down at The Gap
Spend my nights with a role of bubble wrap
Pop, pop - hope no one sees me gettin' freaky

I'm nerdy in the extreme
Whiter than sour cream
I was in AV club and glee club
And even the chess team
Only question I ever thought was hard
Was "Do I like Kirk or do I like Picard?"

Spend every weekend at the Renaissance Faire
Got my name on my underwear
They see me strollin', they're laughin'
And rollin' their eyes cause I'm so
White and nerdy

Just because I'm white and nerdy
Just because I'm white and nerdy
All because I'm white and nerdy
Holy cow, I'm white and nerdy

I wanna bowl with the gangstas
But oh well, it's obvious I'm
White and nerdy

Think I'm just too white and nerdy
Think I'm just too white and nerdy
I'm just too white and nerdy
Look at me I'm white and nerdy

Sunday, February 18, 2007

More on IQ and crime: In the earlier post, Tex wrote in the comments section that IQ-crime correlation is curvilinear: really smart people and the mentally retarded are the least criminal. Here's the percent ever arrested for each number out of ten answered correctly on the GSS vocab test (for whites only):

Percent ever arrested by vocabulary score

Ten 7.8
Nine 10.0
Eight 9.7
Seven 9.4
Six 10.3
Five 12.9
Four 12.8
Three 12.2
Zero-Two 11.4

We don't see much of drop in arrest among the dullest group (I imagine really slow people were not interviewed) but the smartest group is noticeable less likely to have ever been booked and fingerprinted. What happens if we estimate a logistic regression on the modal category--a score of 5--through the top group? This eliminates the curvilinearity problem (although it does restrict the range). The estimated coefficient is .085, with a p-value of .012. But IQ still explains less than 1% of the variation in arrest. Although it violates assumptions to use Pearson correlations, researchers do it all the time, so for people more familiar with that statistic, it is .04 in this analysis, and also .04 for the full range of IQ. I'm not impressed.

Saturday, February 17, 2007

Are cell phones the reason for the 90s crime decline?

Steve Sailer has suggested that the spread of cell phones in the 1990s helps explain the concurrent drop in crime since youths contemplating a life of crime might think twice if witnesses can easily call the police during the commission of a crime. I found this graph which shows steady growth in phone ownership in America during the 1990s, especially after 1992. Robbery, for example, peaked in 1991 and dropped until around 2000, so there is a rough correspondence here. Plus, my impression is that young people--those most likely to be victims and, presumably, witnesses of crime--were the first to jump on the mobile phone craze.
Roughly half of Americans now have a mobile phone, so one could argue that if their availability were important we should have seen a drop that continued until the present day, instead of the observed plateau. But it might be that beyond, say, a 20-25% cell phone prevalence rate, additional phones would not make much difference. Only 4 random people would need to witness a crime for one to have a phone handy. Such a risk might be too high.
Smart people are only slightly less criminal: Plato thought that if people broke the law, they did it out of lack of understanding, since men naturally and rationally pursue happiness, and crime only brings misery. He would have predicted a strong inverse correlation between IQ and criminality, but the General Social Survey disagrees with him. I used logistic regression to estimate the relationship between a person's score on a vocabulary test and whether they have ever been arrested (1 for yes, 2 for no). The coefficient for whites is .052, and it's .054 for blacks. In English, what that means is that IQ explains not even close to one percent of criminality. Maybe Plato wanted to see a virtue in people like himself that just isn't there.

Thursday, February 15, 2007

Looking again at southern intelligence: I was watching a 1993 video about juveniles and the death penalty and said to myself, "All these deathrow teens are dumb white Southerners," and it got me curious again about the idea that whites from that part of the country ain't so bright. When I looked at educational levels in an earlier post, the Southeast was low, but the West South Central Division (Arkansas, Oklahoma, Louisiana, Texas) was not. The General Social Survey (GSS) showed us previously that education and IQ are only moderately correlated, so let's look at the GSS's measure of intelligence--the number of vocabulary words out of 10 answered correctly. I list the divisional means from highest to lowest for whites only:

Mean vocabulary score

New England 6.65
Pacific 6.53
Middle Atlantic 6.52
Mountain 6.48
West North Central 6.33

USA 6.25

East North Central 6.14
South Atlantic 6.07
West South Central 6.00
East South Central 5.42

The stereotype is confirmed: the lowest three divisions are all southern. But the East North Central division (IL, IN, MI, OH, WI) is also below average. The Mountain states in someways feel like the South, but as we saw with data on Mormons, folks in that region are not dumb.

So what's the reason for low Southern averages, especially in Alabama, Mississippi, Tennessee, and Kentucky? A history of inbreeding? And folks from down there, don't get sensitive: we recognize that you have your Faulkners.

Sunday, February 11, 2007

Russell Crowe's sexual orientation revealed: With Hollywood overrun with pretty boys, it reassured me to know that at least we had Russell Crowe to remind us that men are skirt-chasin' jerks. Now I read that he will no longer have cheerleaders for his rugby team, the South Sydney Rabbitohs, because his feminist wife doesn't like them. We always knew he was a good actor, but now we know he uses his talents to act straight.
Agnostics are the most intelligent: If you ask me to say the first thing that pops into my head when I am asked about who's the smartest in terms of believing in God, I would answer atheists. But it turns out that I'm wrong. According to the General Social Survey, agnostics are the smartest:

Mean vocabulary score


Doesn't believe 6.52
No way to find out 7.24
Some higher power 6.96
Believes sometimes 6.02
Believes but doubts 6.42
Knows God exists 6.05


Doesn't believe 4.60
No way to find out 4.36
Some higher power 5.65
Believes sometimes 4.47
Believes but doubts 4.98
Knows God exists 4.90

I'm focusing on the white numbers when I draw my conclusions since sample sizes are small for blacks. Atheists don't even come in second: "some higher power" does. Those who know God exists are by far the largest group, but the numbers here tell us that uncertainty (or vagueness, as in "some higher power") increases with IQ. (I, myself, don't believe on Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays).

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

The answer to the male shortage on campus: I seem to be the only person here (at the university) who is concerned about the shortage of male students. Two-thirds of our criminal justice majors are women? Huh? But then it dawned on me how to get more guys in the seats. We need to hire smokin' hot women professors. It's guaranteed to work. No one has ever asked "Where are the male customers?" at Hooters. And if the instructors dress fashionably, it will keep the female students interested too. Genius, but why does nobody ever listen to me?!

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

China profiled: I'm interested in constructing "personality profiles" of countries around the world, and I chose China as my first project since it is the biggest. I looked at more than 300 questions asked of citizens by the World Values Survey and listed below any where China ranked in the top or bottom 5 (of more than 40 countries). In this manner, we can see in which ways a country is distinctive. Questions covered many topical areas including domestic and international politics, economics, family, religion, lifestyle, and culture.

In the top 5

politics are important
couples should share political values
belongs to political party
government ownership should be increased
confident in armed forces, education, legal system, parliament, and social security

enough wealth can grow for everyone
important to have a strong economy and to maintain order
there should be more focus on technology

willing to fight for country
people can be trusted (probably have Chinese in mind)
have confidence in the military, education, legal system, parliament, social security

job is most important thing in life
more efficient should get more pay
materialism index

percent married
ideal family, 2 or fewer kids
kids need both mom and dad
being a housewife is just as fulfilling
important that kids learn thrift and determination
abortion acceptable for single mom, or if a women wants no more kids, or for a defect

In the bottom 5

to have successful marriage, couples should: share same religion, have good housing, live away from in-laws, have good sex life, and children
kids are hurt if mom works
approves of single moms
children should be taught religious faith, good manners, and obedience

important for work: pleasant people, generous holidays, meeting people, feel achievement, responsibility, interesting work
has a great deal of decision-making freedom
people are poor because they are lazy
competition is harmful
society should de-emphasize the importance of work

families, friends, leisure time, and religion are important
belong to a religious org, do volunteer work for one
belongs to a church
believes in a personal God
prays often
God is important in life
shares parents religious beliefs
has confidence in churches

people should have more say in government
country is run by a few big interests
confident about European community, NATO
trusts neighboring countries
trusts superpowers
wants Muslims for neighbors
society needs to: be more humane, focus on individual development, and focus more on family
approves of human rights movement
identifies first as world citizen
new ideas are usually best

thinks often about death
feels lonely or upset

Let's attempt some generalizations. China places great importance on politics and has faith in the powers that be. The Chinese are patriotic and suspicious of others. A humanitarian ethic is less developed. Work is also central, and people value merit, thrift, competition and determination (sounds like capitalists, no?). China is one of the least religious countries in the world. They value traditional family forms, but think it is good for women to work, and approve of abortion and small families. The people seem sober, practical, materialistic, and moderately contented. (Keep in mind that respondents might at times give answers they think are government-approved.)

Sunday, February 04, 2007

The secular creep: Using the General Social Survey, I averaged the percent of Americans who never attend church:

Percent never going to church

70s: 14.0
80s: 14.8
90s: 17.3
00s: 20.4

70s: 6.8
80s: 8.3
90s: 8.9
00s: 10.7

So the increase in church avoidance is up 46% for whites and 57% for blacks over (roughly) 3 decades. One in five whites never attends religious services. America is still one of the most religious countries in the world (with indicators similar to Ireland, Poland, and India) but the drift is in a European direction. I suspect that the trend has less to do with growing disbelief than with diminishing appeal and sense of obligation, and later I'll see what the data say.

Saturday, February 03, 2007

More evidence that white NFL players are discriminated against: In the fall of 2005, I did an analysis of NFL stats to assist Steve Sailer who wrote a piece for VDARE about possible discrimination against white players. Using data from Caste Football on the number of white starters and nonstarters, I found that over a three-year period, teams with more white benchwarmers were noticeably more likely to win games. The number of white starters didn't matter much, but each additional 2.2 to 5 white nonstarters (depending on the year) resulted in an extra win. Caste Football’s J.D. Cash has suggested that perhaps white utility players are more likely to master the playbooks for multiple positions, and Steve added that perhaps benching black athletes who often have large egos poisons the atmosphere and lowers team spirit.

In the scientific spirit of replication (and the fact that tomorrow is the Super Bowl) I ran the numbers again for the year that is now coming to an end. Looking at the regular season, we see the same pattern observed in previous years: the percent of white starters does not seem to matter (r=.06) but the correlation between nonstarters and wins is noteworthy: .20. An example based on estimating a regression model will make more intuitive sense: if Jacksonville, who had only 5 white non-starters, were like the Jets who had 15, they would have won an estimated 2 additional games. This may not sound like all that much, but as Sailer wrote, in a game of many complex factors, identifying a factor that might turn an average team into a playoff contending team is a big deal.

Thursday, February 01, 2007

Women and job prestige: I'm interested in two questions: which ethnic group has the most prestigious women, and how do they compare to their male counterparts? Using General Social Survey data on Americans of various ethnicities, I first list the mean occupational prestige and then the gap with males:

Mean prestige score for females (female - male in parentheses)

Chinese 51.68 (+1.15)
Jewish 48.89 (-3.94)
Russians 48.01 (-1.26)
Scots 47.37 (+.77)
Indians 47.23 (-10.60)
Danes 46.91 (-.73)
Swedes 46.13 (+.49)
English/Welsh 45.74 (-.89)
Norwegians 45.16 (-.53)
Filipinos 45.04 (+3.93)
Italians 44.61 (-.70)
Czechs 44.55 (-.76)
French 44.51 (+1.27)
Irish 44.10 (-1.09)
Poles 44.09 (-2.66)

All women 43.66 (-.48)

Germans 43.54 (-.58)
Spaniards 43.20 (-1.47)
Puerto Ricans 41.71 (+3.06)
Blacks 41.16 (+2.46)
French Canadians 40.80 (-1.67)
American Indians 40.80 (+.97)
Dutch 40.76 (-.86)
Mexicans 38.62 (-1.18)

Chinese women have the most prestigious jobs by far, and they even exceed Chinese men by 1.15 points. They and Indians are two non-white groups in the top five. The Russian number is elevated some since many Jews are from Russia. Northern and Eastern Europeans have the highest numbers for gentile whites. Four groups--two of them white--are lower than black women.

Women in eight of the 22 groups exceed the men, and males are only ahead a little bit in the overall numbers. The female advantage is large for Filipinos, Puerto Ricans, and blacks.

So, these numbers tells us that prestigious jobs in America are in no way reserved for men--in many cases, women have higher status positions. Nor do non-white women find that they cannot ascend to the highest ranks. Not only do Chinese women surpass all other women, but also the vast majority of men.
More evidence on Sun versus Ice People: In an earlier post, I reported that, according to World Values Survey data, northern Europeans are the happiest, eastern Europeans are the gloomiest, and sub-Saharan Africans are in the middle. This finding runs contrary to the view that blacks are "Sun People" while whites are "Ice People." Some might argue that much of the observed pattern is due to the social conditions of these regions (although conditions are better in E. Europe than SS Africa) but what do we see if we look at ethnic groups who are living in the same general environment (i.e., country)?

The General Social Survey has asked 33,867 Americans how happy have they felt lately. Answers ranged from very happy (1) through pretty happy(2) to not too happy (3). I calculated means for all the ethnic groups and subtracted them from 3 so that higher numbers indicate happier people:

Mean happiness score

Greeks 1.34
Danes 1.30
Belgians 1.29
French Canadians 1.29
Romanians 1.29
English/Welsh 1.28
Swedes 1.27
Scots 1.26
Norwegians 1.25
Dutch 1.25
Irish 1.24
Germans 1.24
France 1.24
Finns 1.23
Filipinos 1.21

USA 1.20

Poles 1.20
Czechs 1.20
Yugoslavs 1.19
Italians 1.19
Japanese 1.18
Hungarians 1.18
Jews 1.17
Indians 1.16
Austrians 1.16
Russians 1.16
American Indians 1.16
Mexicans 1.15
Spaniards 1.15
Chinese 1.13
Lithuanians 1.12
Blacks 1.02
Arabs 1.02
Puerto Ricans 1.00
West Indians .89

The American pattern does not square at all with the Sun/Ice dichotomy: blacks, especially West Indians, are at the bottom of the list, while N. Europeans fall toward the top. And E. Europeans are below average among Americans, as they are when comparing countries. More broadly, whites are happier than non-whites: the only above-average group of color is Filipinos.

I'd be surprised if some racism hunter has not discovered this pattern so he can demonstrate yet another way that the Man keeps the browns down. I am reminded of a Puerto Rican graduate student friend of mine who was conducting research to show that assimilating people of color causes them to become mentally ill.

Are gun owners mentally ill?

  Some anti-gun people think owning a gun is a sign of some kind of mental abnormality. According to General Social Survey data, gun owners ...