Monday, May 31, 2010

Sensitivity to testosterone and risk of lifecourse-persistent criminality

Studies show that blacks don't have markedly higher levels of testosterone than whites, but recent research suggests that they might be more sensitive to it.

A difference has been found in androgen receptors which vary in the their number of glutamines (an amino acid). The length of the glutamine chain is important in determining a person's sensitivity to testosterone. The shorter the chain, the more sensitive. 

Black men have shorter glutamine chains than white men, and this difference might help explain the higher rate of prostate cancer among blacks.

Having short chains is also linked to ADHD, conduct disorder, and oppositional defiant disorder--disorders which are more prevalent among blacks (in symptoms, but not diagnosis).

These disorders strongly predict a lifecourse-persistent pattern of criminality, a pattern also seen more frequently in blacks compared to whites.        

Sunday, May 30, 2010

How much does homosexuality reduce number of offspring?

The MIDUS Study is a recent sample (2004-2006) of middle-aged people which makes it useful to measure how many kids gay men and lesbians are having in an era in which homosexuality is widely tolerated. The limitation of the study (in addition to small samples of homosexuals) is that participants were asked to count stepchildren, adopted children, and foster kids in addition to biological children. Anyway, here are the averages for people 40 and over. 

Mean number of children (N = 3,521)

Straight 2.59
Bisexual 1.41
Gay .42

Straight 2.63
Bisexual 1.44
Lesbians 2.10

Straight men have 6 times as many children as gay men, but heterosexual women have only 1.25 times more kids than lesbians. Bisexual men are in between straight and gay men, but bisexual females are the least fertile women. I'll warn once again that non-biological children are throwing off the numbers.    

Saturday, May 29, 2010

Sexual orientation, body size, and shape

Using MIDUS data, I lumped together homosexuals and bisexuals, giving me 53 gay men and 45 lesbians. I then calculated waist-to-hip ratios for everyone:

Mean waist-to-hip ratio

Straight men .97
Gay men .95
Straight women .85
Lesbians .88

Compared to gay guys, straight men have more tubular (masculine) bodies, while among women, lesbians have the more straight-up-and-down shape. The differences are statistically significant. The guy gap is only two-tenths of a standard deviation (SD), but the female gap is four-tenths of an SD--a moderate difference. 

Next, I calculated the mean Body Mass Index (BMI) for each group:

Mean Body Mass Index

Straight men 28.35
Gay men 27.21
Straight women 27.53
Lesbians 28.27

Straight men and lesbians have similar numbers and are heavier than their gender counterparts. Gay men and straight women also have similar BMIs (gay men are actually thinner). The differences, however, are not statistically significant.

Finally, let's look at height:

Mean height (inches)

Straight men 70.2
Gay men 69.6
Straight women 64.3 
Lesbians 64.8

For the men, straight guys are 6/10 of an inch taller. Lesbians are half of an inch taller than hetero females, but neither of the differences are significant.

Overall, the numbers suggest that gay men are more feminine than straight men, while lesbians are more masculine than heterosexual women.  

Friday, May 28, 2010

Expected ethnic change divides whites and non-whites

General Social Survey respondents were asked to estimate the percent change in population of various ethnic groups over the next 25 years (e.g., Hispanics, Asians). Then they were asked: "When you think about these changes in the racial and ethnic make-up of the country in the next 25 years, do you think they will be a very good thing for the country (1), a good thing (2), neither good nor bad (3), a bad thing (4), or a very bad thing (5)?"  The numbers are the scores assigned to each answer. Here are the means by the ethnic group the respondent belongs to:

Mean "ethnic change will be bad" score (N = 1,318)

Scottish 3.14
Swedish 3.11
Italian 3.06
German 3.05
Irish 3.04
French 3.04
English/Welsh 3.02

All Americans 2.94

Polish 2.90
Russian 2.83
Jewish 2.81
Amerindian 2.75
Black 2.71
Chinese/Japanese 2.67
Filipinos 2.62
Mexican 2.57
Puerto Rican 2.45
Asian Indian 2.20

I'm not surprised. Whites have higher means, while non-whites tend to think change will be good for the country. The difference between Americans of Scottish descent and Asian Indians is 1.15 standard deviations--a very large difference.

Here are some correlates for whites :

Correlation with "ethnic change is bad" score

Age .13
Education -.19
Church attendance -.01
Conservatism .14 

So older, less educated, and more conservative whites are more likely to think that ethnic change will be bad for the country.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

More on "don't ask, don't tell"

In the last post, Steve Sailer suggested I look at Americans born after 1954 since many born prior to this time would have been subject to the draft.  This strategy reduces the sample size substantially, so I threw in bisexuals with homosexuals, which yields 23 gay men and 13 lesbians (not enough, really). The percentages ever serving in the military are as follows:

Percent ever serving

Straight men 13.6
Gay men 17.4
Straight women 2.5
Lesbians 7.7   

Based on these more recent numbers, and once again assuming 3 percent of all men are gay and 1.5 percent of women are lesbian, "don't ask, don't tell" is an issue for about 3 in 1,000 Americans.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

What percent of homosexuals have served in the military?

I see that a proposal to repeal the "don't ask, don't tell" ban against gays serving openly in the military is expected to be voted on in Congress perhaps this week.  That got me wondering what percent of gay men and lesbians actually serve in the military.

 GSS respondents were asked: "Have you ever been on active duty for military training or service for two consecutive months or more?"
According to my analysis, 20.4 percent of gay men (compared to 36.1 percent of straight men) and 21.6 percent of lesbians have served (compared to 1.4 percent of straight women). (All the estimates seem high, except for the hetero women, but the question was asked 1974-1994, so that probably explains it.)
So if we assume that 3 percent of all men are gay and 1.5 percent of all women are lesbian, "don't ask, don't tell" has been an issue for close to 1 in 200 Americans. 

Monday, May 24, 2010

America needs a warning label: "Hazardous to your health"

The May/June 2010 issue of the American Psychologist has an article on the problem of immigrant acculturation.  One section focuses on the "immigration paradox." This refers to the fact that the more an immigrant is assimilated, the greater the risk of bad health outcomes. This is the case for psychiatric disorders, drug and alcohol abuse, bad eating habits, obesity, diabetes--just about anything you want to examine. It's such a big problem, it gets it's own name (that's Immigrant Paradox, in case you missed it).  

But for some reason, among the list of policy recommendations, I can't see the obvious suggestion that we discourage folks from moving to unhealthy America, and that we encourage them to return home if they're already here.    

Sunday, May 23, 2010

How much have WASPs contributed?

With all the talk about the fall of the WASP, let's look at public opinion about the group. 

General Social Survey participants were asked: "Since the beginning of our country, people of many different races, nationalities, and religions have come here and settled. As I name some of these groups, please tell me if the group has made one of the most important positive contributions to this country (4), an important contribution (3), some contribution (2), or little positive contribution (1) to this community." The numbers listed are the scores assigned to a particular answer.  Here are the mean responses when asked about people of English descent:

Mean positive contribution of English Americans, N = 1,035.

Chinese/Japanese 3.45
English/Welsh 3.40
Jewish 3.16
Scottish 3.16
German 3.14

All Americans 3.04

Irish 2.95
Mexican 2.95
Italian 2.84
Black 2.80
French 2.78
Amerindian 2.65

Smart, successful minority groups give people of English descent more credit than less successful minority groups. You might respond that the low averages of blacks and Amerindians are to be expected, given America's history, but Chinese and Japanese Americans can also point to mistreatment. By the way, there is a one standard deviation difference between the Chinese/Japanese and Amerindians--a very large gap.  

Friday, May 21, 2010

Emphasis on education is a poor predictor of outcomes

IQ nurturists claim that blacks would be as smart as East Asians if they only placed the same value on an education.

General Social Survey interviewers presented a list of 13 characteristics to participants and asked: "Which three qualities listed on this card would you say are the most desirable for a child to have? b. Which one of these three is the most desirable of all? c. All of the qualities listed on this card may be desirable, but could you tell me which three you consider least important? d. And which of these three is least important of all?"

The qualities are: good manners; tries hard to succeed; honest; neat and clean; good sense and sound judgment; self-control; acts like a boy (or girl); gets along well with others; obeys parents well; is responsible; is considerate; is interested in how and why things happen; and is a good student.

On the question of "good student," answers were coded like this: least important (1); among the bottom three (2); not mentioned (3); among the top three (4); most important (5).  Here are the means by ethnic group:

Mean emphasis on education, N = 6,279

Asian Indian 3.25
Puerto Rican 2.93
West Indian 2.90
Chinese/Japanese 2.84
Black 2.75
Amerindian 2.77
Mexican 2.69
Polish 2.66
Italian 2.59
Russian 2.56
Jewish 2.55
Dutch 2.55
Swedish 2.54
Irish 2.53
English/Welsh 2.53
Norwegian 2.51
Scottish 2.50
German 2.49

You can see that the list has been ranked, and blacks are right next to East Asians (Chinese and Japanese Americans were combined to maximize sample size).

Attitudes just don't seem to predict much in terms of academic performance. Puerto Ricans, blacks, Amerindians, and Mexican Americans tend to do poorly even though they are on the top half of the list. The bottom half is made up of various white groups who generally do well. Ten groups score higher than Jewish Americans.

The country has been stressing the importance of getting an education to minorities for decades, and it looks like they buy the message. It looks like a bad attitude is not the problem. It looks like ability is.

(By the way, the difference between Germans and Asian Indians is one standard deviation--a big difference).

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Jews are "religiocentric" but diverse

I see that the question of Jewish ethnocentrism has been raised again in HBD World, so I thought I would look at it from another angle with the MIDUS Study. Participants were asked: "How important do you think it is for people of your religion to marry people who are the same religion?" Answers ranged from "very" (4) to "not at all" (1). Here are the means by affiliation:

Jews are between members of sects and denominations in the importance they place on marrying within the faith. The differences on the table are striking. For example, the gap between the means for Jews and Unitarians is 1.4 standard deviations--a huge difference.
I include the standard deviations as a measure of agreement within each group. Jehovah's Witnesses (JWs) and Unitarians have two of the lowest numbers: this indicates that JWs have a comparatively high level of agreement that they should marry other JWs, while Unitarians agree that endogamy is unimportant. You can see that the SD for Jews is high, which indicates a broad diversity of opinion on the question. So Jews are comparatively "religiocentric" but not monolithic.

Monday, May 17, 2010

More on ethnocentrism

A reader in the last post on ethnocentrism rightly suggests that people might get confused by my analysis. It showed that, for whites, believing that your ethnicity is important to who you are is (weakly) associated with cooler feelings toward other groups.

The largest negative correlation is Jews toward whites which could be interpreted to mean that Jewish folks like whites less than other groups. That is incorrect: the negative correlation means that Jewish ethnocentrism predicts cooler outgroup feelings better than other ethnocentrisms. In other words, when it comes to disliking others, there is a sharper difference between ethnocentric and non-ethnoncentric Jews than their counterparts in other groups. The correlation says nothing about average levels of coolness. Here is the mean coolness score toward whites listed by one's ethnic group.

Mean coolness score toward whites

Filipino 3.53
Amerindian 3.49
Black 3.36
Chinese 3.21
Asian Indian 3.10
Scottish 2.90
Swedish 2.80
English/Welsh 2.78
Russian 2.77
Mexican 2.77
German 2.71
Irish 2.52
Puerto Rican 2.43
Polish 2.28
Jewish 2.28
Arabic 2.12

Asians, Amerindians, and blacks like whites the least. The difference between the Filipino and Jewish means, for example, is eight-tenths of a standard deviation--a big difference. But even Filipinos--the coolest group--have a pretty warm average. Respondents could give any answer between "very warm" (1) and "very cool" (9), so 3.5 is still pretty warm.

Friday, May 14, 2010

Ethnocentrism and feelings toward the outgroup

General Social Survey respondents were asked: "When you think about yourself, how important is your ethnic group membership to your sense of who you are?"  The table shows the correlations between the answer to this question and the answer about the degree to which the respondents feel warmth toward a specified group. For example, the top correlation shows that the more a Jewish person feels that his ethnicity is important, the cooler he feels toward whites. 

I listed the correlations in descending order. The bottom one--.06--is the only one indicating a positive association: Mexican Americans who think their ethnicity is important are slightly more likely to feel warm toward whites. 

For most groups, ethnocentrism predicts (weakly) coolness toward the outgroup. This is true of all white groups. Black ethnocentrism, on the other hand, is unrelated to feelings toward whites and Mexican-Americans. 

With the noted exceptions, the correlations contradict my sociology professor who claimed that, as America becomes a truly multicultural country, it will be as warm and peaceful as diverse Switzerland.  

At first glance, it might seem like ethnocentricity among minorities doesn't lead to anti-outgroup feelings, and while the data indicate that might be true for blacks and Hispanics, the tendency among Jews is the strongest on the list.  

Thursday, May 13, 2010

More on European ancestry and IQ

As a follow-up to the last post, the Add Health Study has a measure of IQ based on a vocabulary test. I calculated mean IQs for two groups: people who, on the racial question, only marked black, and people who marked both black and white. The mean for full blacks is 90.3 (n = 1,464), and it's 98.0 for the mixed group (n = 82). The difference is statistically significant.  

European ancestry and IQ among blacks

In his book Intelligence and How to Get It, Richard Nisbett makes a big deal out of the ancestry research to show that the black deficit in IQ is not due to genes. He argues that if genes explain the black-white IQ gap, then blacks with more white ancestry should be smarter, but then claims the research doesn't show that.

I've seen studies that contradict Nisbett, but allow me to weigh in with General Social Survey (GSS) data. The GSS records the race of respondents and also asks them from which country or part of the world did their ancestors come. Almost 90 percent of blacks answer either Africa; their ancestors are American Indian; or they are American only. But a small number give a European country, and the countries most often cited are England, Germany, Ireland, and France. I'm assuming that white ancestors are recent and/or prominent enough to motivate a black person to give this kind of answer.  

I calculated mean IQ for both types of blacks (N = 2,231). Those who say their ancestors originally came from Europe have a mean of 97.0, while those who give another answer have an average of 91.2. The difference is statistically significant.

UPDATE: I also found a question about listing one or more races that you consider yourself to be. Those who first mention black, but then list white as a second race have a mean IQ of 96.1. Problem is, it's only 11 respondents.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

American leadership is not only stupid; it's gutless

General Social Survey (GSS) respondents were asked: "Some people say that because of past discrimination, blacks should be given preference in hiring and promotion. Others say that such preference in hiring and promotion of blacks is wrong because it discriminates against whites. What about your opinion?"

The yellow and green sections of the bars are those who oppose preferences, and you can see that by the late 1990s, a majority felt that way. 

Now, here's a question for you: what is the race of the people represented in the bar graph?  They're black! 

I'm sure you know that the vast majority of whites are against preferences, so that leads me to one final question: Why in the hell are we still doing it?

Affirmative action might have been started out by elite whites who wanted to speed up the progress of angry, impatient blacks, but it quickly became a way for important white people to show how non-racist they are. Any white guy who criticizes it or works to dismantle it will be seen as one of "those" kinds of people. You have to be a black guy--Ward Connerly--to feel like you can take on the issue. American leadership is not only stupid; it's gutless.     

Sunday, May 09, 2010

More on discrimination

Here's another list of discrimination questions from the Midus Study asked of black respondents. The numbers indicate the percent who have never been victims. Keep in mind that this is a middle-aged sample, so many of these are folks were born in the 1950s or even earlier (the survey was conducted in 2004, and the mean age is 53.5). They have been around a long time. In spite of this, the vast majority have never been hassled by a police officer, for example. I thought this was a constant occurrence among blacks. 

Respondents were asked how many times they have been victims, but I didn't list the numbers because reports go up to 100 times (e.g., not hired 100 times).  But more on this tendency later.

Saturday, May 08, 2010

The social construction of racism

Reader Linda Seebach wondered in the last post on the frequency of experiencing discrimination among blacks if there were some way to see if  "individuals' answers are consistently in one direction or another?"  This would assess the hypothesis that certain blacks tend to see racism all around in many forms, while others don't experience it in any of various possible ways, thus suggesting it is more in the mind of the victim than an objective reality.

In other words, if racist whites are all around, discrimination should tend to be experienced randomly by blacks. If racism, on the other hand, is found to be concentrated among a few victims, this suggests they are reading racism into events that others would interpret as benign.

Recall that most incidents that are labelled racist are ambiguous. Just look above at the list of questions that interviewers in the MIDUS Study asked respondents. If a waitress gives you bad service, it could be for many different reasons, only one of them being that she doesn't like members of your race. 

To test the competing hypotheses, I can calculate the correlations among the nine questions above. If the correlations are non-existent or low, this means that being a frequent victim of one type of mistreatment is unrelated to the frequency of another type. If, by contrast, the correlations are high, this suggests individuals tend to experience all types of mistreatment often, or none of them at all, which suggests it's much more about the victim and much less about others. 

It turns out that the correlations are overwhelmingly high. The average for all 36 correlations is .58, which means that a person's answer to one question predicts very strongly a similar answer to another question.

Another way to approach it is to calculate the alpha coefficient, which is a measure of the extent to which the questions tap an underlying factor, in this case the frequency of perceiving discrimination of all kinds. The coefficient is .92. This is a very high number and indicates that the questions are all tapping the same thing: a person's tendency to experience many interactions as racist. 

Many blacks are taught to see racists under every rock, so should we call the phenomenon we just observed in the data "the social construction of racism"?   

Friday, May 07, 2010

Frequency of discrimination

The MIDUS Study asked 149 blacks about the frequency of experiencing different types of discrimination. Here are the percentages:

You can see that a vast majority of blacks rarely or never experience the various forms of mistreatment. I thought racism was like a thick cloud that leaves no one untouched. If this were true, all blacks would give the same answer: "often" or at least "sometimes."

This looks like a case of some blacks interpreting everything in terms of racism, while others do not. You can see how supposed racist incidents are inherently ambiguous. Did the guy call you an idiot because you're black or because he thinks you're dumb? Notice how the interviewers did not ask, "How often are you called a racial slur?" This is an unambiguous incident, but it wasn't asked because it rarely happens. Researchers like to help blacks "find" racism.

In a later post, I'll look to see if we can use a person's characteristics to predict their perceiving racism. For example, I expect that suspiciousness will predict it.

Thursday, May 06, 2010

Asian rape victims

I read somewhere that many Asian rape victims are attacked by black men, but I wanted to check it out for myself. 

I looked at the National Crime Victimization Survey (NCVS) over the years 1992 through 2005 in order to maximize cases. Rape is rare (thank God), so I only found 11 cases of raped Asian (and Pacific Islander) women. Of the offenders, 5 were white, 4 were "other," and two were unknown. I'm assuming that most of the 4 "others" were Asians (Hispanics are a possibility as well); an Asian category is not available. None of the perps was black. The NCVS can't tell us if any of those whites are Hispanic since, according to the survey, Hispanics can be victims but not offenders. 

The numbers are just too small to tell us much. Victims were also asked about attempted rapes. Asian women reported one white, one black, and one "other" perpetrator.   

Wednesday, May 05, 2010

The stupidity of American elites

Of the dozen or so professors I've known who are Hispanic, all of them except one are objectively white. I looked at the General Social Survey: 60 percent of all Latinos with  four or more years of college classify themselves as white.

This exemplifies perfectly the stupidity of American elites. We push aside a more qualified white in order to give the position to a less qualified white.  

Ugly racism?

From David Frum's CNN piece:
Many Americans carry in their minds a family memory of upward mobility, from great-grandpa stepping off the boat at Ellis Island to a present generation of professionals and technology workers. This story no longer holds true for the largest single U.S. immigrant group, Mexican-Americans. 
Stephen Trejo and Jeffrey Groger studied the intergenerational progress of Mexican-American immigrants in their scholarly work, "Falling Behind or Moving Up?"

They discovered that third-generation Mexican-Americans were no more likely to finish high school than second-generation Mexican-Americans. Fourth-generation Mexican-Americans did no better than third.

If these results continue to hold, the low skills of yesterday's illegal immigrant will negatively shape the U.S. work force into the 22nd century.
Long story short: illegal Mexicans are in the process of damaging the U.S. economy for the next 100 years plus.

Aren't those the words of an ugly racist, or at least an unpatriotic conservative?

Tuesday, May 04, 2010

"This is so tasty, we'd like an extra helping!"

In the journal Intelligence, Peter Hartmann and colleagues analyzed two American data sets and and found that: 1) there is a 0.8 standard deviation difference (that means large) between whites (W) and Hispanics (H) in general intelligence (g); and 2) correlations between g loadings and H-W differences for each subtest demonstrate that much of the difference in IQ is due to differences in g. According to Arthur Jensen's default hypothesis, group differences are assumed to be caused by the same factors as within-group differences, and we know individual variation in g is at least 50 percent heritable. 

Bottom line: the white-Hispanic intelligence gap is 80 percent as wide as the black-white gap (which is huge), and like the black-white gap, it ain't goin' anywhere quick. 

I get misty-eyed at the wisdom of our leaders. Upon seeing all the 1960s poverty and social turmoil in the black ghetto, they said to themselves, "This is so tasty, we'd like an extra helping!" 

Monday, May 03, 2010

Maybe the lying is congenital

Heather MacDonald does a great job of illustrating just how mendacious the media has been about Arizona's new immigration law. I learned the lesson years ago in grad school: liberals are gotdamn liars on racial issues. They simply cannot be trusted.

I showed in another post that liberals are much more likely than conservatives to cheat on their spouses. Maybe the lying is congenital.

Sunday, May 02, 2010

Who wants to move here?

This table from Gallup is based on a sample of people around the world who say they would like to move to another country permanently.  The percentages indicate how many would choose the United States (and Canada as well).

America is most popular among people from Asia, and least popular among those from the Middle East and North Africa. Isn't it great when feelings are mutual?

I'm pleased to see that so many people are not choosing the United States. We need to do what we can to convince the world that this place is a hellhole so they'll move someplace else.

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 ...