Monday, December 31, 2018

Data: Has racism declined over the past few decades?

Despite decades of militant effort to root out racism in America, blacks continue to be concentrated at the bottom rungs of society.  Now we all walk on egg shells when it comes to race, so where is the supposed hatred that is keeping blacks down?  To save the argument, liberals have shifted and now claim that racism isn't cross-burnings and lynchings; it's sneaky.  It's so sneaky, you can't even find it. It's like the Devil: invisible but powerful.  It's either hidden in institutional arrangements, or whites are simply faking their goodwill. 

There is clear General Social Survey (GSS) evidence that contradicts the view that whites don't talk or act so racist, but the same hatred still lurks in their hearts.  I've long argued that one of the few survey measures of racism that has some validity asks participants how warmly they feel toward blacks.  At least it's better than BS measures like whether you support racial preferences or not.

GSS participants were asked the warmth question in 2002.  Look how mean "coolness" increases with age for southerners (blue) and northerners (red):


People in their 20s would have been born in the 1970s, those in their 30s in the 1960s, etc.  People aged 70 and above are noticeably colder than those in their 20s.  It's about one-half of a standard deviation difference. And even the elderly group averages a "warm" response.  A five would be neutral, but a four is positive.  Even whites born in the South in the 1920s like blacks.  The US is a racist country?  BS.  Just the opposite.

Notice how young southerners are a little colder than northerners, but the two regions converge and even flip among the oldest group. In other words, elderly northerners like blacks less than elderly southerners do.

Anyway, I think even most liberals would admit that whites act better now than they did in the 1950s, which is all anyone should worry about anyway.  Who cares what's in someone's heart as long as they treat you well?  But if we are worried about private sentiments, there is a significant difference between younger and older Americans.  (Of course, I'm assuming people develop their feelings when young and then tend to hold on to them throughout adulthood. It is possible that people are warmer when young and get colder as they age.)

By the way, I'm trying to figure out why my cohort, those born in the 60s, appear to be colder than those who are both younger and older.  I was in college during the Rodney King riots in 1992, and it did make an impression on me.  But I was a liberal, so I found myself making excuses for all the destructive behavior.  Perhaps all the violent crime of the late 80s and early 90s left its mark. 

Sunday, December 30, 2018

Data: What percentage of Americans are "white nationalists"?

The General Social Survey asks respondents the following: "What about the number of immigrants from Europe? Should it be increased a lot, increased a little, left the same as it is now, decreased a little, or decreased a lot?"  People were asked the same about immigrants from Latin America.

These questions enable us to measure a preference for one group or the other.  I created a variable that ranges from 1 to 9 where 9 is a person who wants to increase immigration a lot from Europe and decrease it a lot from Latin America.  A person who scores a 1 wants a large increase from Latin America and a big decrease from Europe.  A person who wants the same level for both groups, regardless of the level, is given a 5, which indicates no preference.  All the other numbers indicate milder forms of preference for either one group or the other.  So let's show the results by race of the respondent:

Immigration preference (%)

Whites (n = 1,033)

Very strong European  0.1
Strong European  2.6
Moderate European  5.3
Mild European  8.7
No preference  77.1
Mild Latin  5.5
Moderate Latin  0.4
Strong Latin 0.2
Very Strong Latin  0.1 

I was pretty sure the most popular score would be "no preference," but there are small percentages of whites who do show a European preference.  It's 16.7% of whites that show at least a mild European bias, and I imagine there are more who were unwilling to admit the preference to an interviewer.  So conservatively speaking, we can conclude that 17% of whites could be classified as at least mildly Eurocentric.  Some might want to put a nastier label on it and say that 17% of whites are white nationalists or white supremacists.

Notice, too, that over 6% of white Americans have a Latin American preference.  Let's now turn to black respondents: 

Blacks (n = 191)

Very strong European  0.0
Strong European  1.6
Moderate European  4.2
Mild European  4.7
No preference  83.2
Mild Latin  4.7
Moderate Latin  0.5
Strong Latin  0.1
Very Strong Latin  0.0

Blacks are even more likely than whites to not have a preference, but 10.5% have a Euro preference, compared to only 5.3% having at least a mild Latin preference.  These numbers are not consistent with blacks viewing Hispanic immigrants as brothers in the fight against whites.

Other Races (n = 77)

Very strong European  0.0
Strong European  7.8
Moderate European  3.9
Mild European  6.5
No preference  68.8
Mild Latin  10.4
Moderate Latin  2.6
Strong Latin  0.0
Very Strong Latin  0.0

You actually have a higher percent of people from other races showing at least some Euro bias than whites: 18.2% to be precise.  Slightly over two-thirds report no preference, while 13% have a Latin preference. Keep in mind that many of these "other race" are Hispanics.  I would have expected more people from this group to show favoritism to other Latinos.

Overall, there is a noteworthy number of people from each race who are more favorable to immigration by whites than immigration by Hispanics (or at least less unfavorable). So if these people are indeed white nationalists, then we have white nationalists of all colors.

Saturday, December 29, 2018

Data: How smart are Christian Arabs in the US?

Recently, there was a big Twitter war between a bunch of smart pro-IQ guys (i.e., pro-science), including Stever Sailer, Greg Cochran, and Geoffrey Miller, against the otherwise smart Nassim Nicholas Taleb.  Taleb is from a Lebanese Christian family, and a side question that arose from the debate was about the intelligence of Lebanese Christians.  Sailer mentioned all the Lebanese billionaires like Carlos Slim as being quite impressive, and most are Christians.

The General Social Survey can help a little here. While it does not ask if you're Lebanese, it does ask if you're Arab, as well as what your religion is.  I was able to identify 12 Christian Arabs in the sample who were born in the US.  Their mean IQ is 103.5.  I've attended church with several Arabs over the years, and they seem like accomplished people.

Thursday, December 27, 2018

Data: What is the IQ of the average black person with an advanced degree?

We know that colleges have gotten less selective as they have tried to boost the numbers of blacks and Hispanics.  (In fact, as higher education has gotten more egalitarian, it has become less selective for all races.)  My guess is that mean IQ for blacks of a given degree level has dropped over the past few decades.  Here's what GSS data say (N = 3,856):

It looks like I'm right, but only for graduate school.  Mean IQ in the 70s was 112, but now it has fallen all the way to 101.  For a 4-year degree, the average has hovered around 100.

Two things really strike me.  First, the average black with a Master's degree or higher has an IQ close to the average white in the general population. That really needs no comment, but you can imagine what the thesis is going to look like (if a thesis is even required).

Second, a black person with an advanced degree is basically not smarter than one with a bachelor's.  Universities are not recruiting a select bunch out of the pool of college graduates. They're selecting on other traits like who thinks a teaching assistantship sounds preferable to a real job.

Wednesday, December 26, 2018

Data: Are Jews the smartest whites?

The human biodiversity community knows that Jews are the smartest whites, but are they, really?

Using the General Social Survey's IQ measure, here are the top five white IQ groups by religion:

Mean IQ (N = 22,242)

Buddhist  110.9
Other Eastern religion  109.4 (n is only 13)
Jewish  108.1
Episcopalian  107.7
Hindu  106.3 (n is only 6)

Jews actually come in third behind Buddhists and whites following other Eastern religions.  Plus, Episcopalians are pretty close to Jews.  Hindus are smart, on average, too (although we shouldn't make much out of such a small sample).

In case you're curious, whites with no religion have an average IQ of 102.8.

Thursday, December 20, 2018

Data: The verbal IQs of black northerners and especially black and white southerners have risen since the 1970s

The General Social Survey has been giving participants a vocabulary quiz since the 70s. Research indicates that this is a decent proxy for verbal IQ.

Supposedly, education for blacks in the South was awful prior to the civil rights movement.  If education makes any difference, perhaps IQ scores of southern blacks have gradually improved since the 1960s.  The graph below shows mean IQ per decade for southern (blue line) and northern (red line) blacks (N = 4,435):

Keep in mind that the sample is all adult blacks, so educational improvements for children would have a very gradual impact on the whole adult population, if any at all.  In the 1970s, the gap for the two groups was six IQ points (85 vs. 91). By the 2000s, the gap was down to three points (90 vs. 93).

Notice, too, how the means increased for both groups, especially for southerners, over this period. Perhaps southern schools have gotten better, and some other factor has boosted scores for blacks in both regions.  It could be some biological factor like nutrition, or perhaps something like more exposure to mainstream vocabulary words via television.  I'm pretty sure the same 10 questions have been used since the beginning, so the quiz hasn't gotten easier.

Here is the graph for whites (N = 24,363):

Like blacks, whites from the South gained significant IQ points from the 70's to the 2000s; four points to be specific (96 to 100). Northern whites, on the other hand, only gained 6/10's of a point, from 100.6 to 101.2.

It looks like northern blacks and especially southerners of both races benefited from something.

UPDATE: The South has gotten to be a more attractive region post-civil rights era. Perhaps part of the story is intelligent black and white northerners moving south, thus boosting the mean IQ.

Wednesday, December 19, 2018

A comment on criminal justice reform legislation

Folks should know some basic facts about criminals before applauding the Senate's vote for sweeping federal criminal justice reform.

One basic finding in criminology is that criminals are not specialists. They are opportunists who like to cut corners by stealing stuff, selling drugs, and using violence to get their way.  Serving a sentence for drug dealing in no way implies that the offender is simply a businessman who never steals or attacks people. He happens to be serving a sentence for a drug conviction, but next time it is almost as likely to be for a property crime or violence.

Also--criminals who are serving time in federal prison for a drug offense are not decent people who simply have a drug addiction problem. They are traffickers.  More than 90% of all felonies are plea bargained, so it is not uncommon for someone charged with trafficking to get it reduced to a lesser offense like possession in exchange for a guilty plea. The only druggies who are locked up in federal prison are people who commit other types of federal crimes--i.e., serious stuff.

Almost all ex-convicts recidivate.  A recent study that tracked former inmates for 10 years found that more than 80% were reconvicted and returned to prison, many within two or three years. And those were only the criminals who were caught.  Research shows that many offenders will commit dozens of crimes without ever being apprehended, and some criminals are more skilled at evading arrest and conviction than others.

All the evidence points to criminality being a life-long trait that is highly influenced by genes. Noticeably bad behavior emerges early in life, it becomes more obnoxious and dangerous when the boy (it's typically a boy) reaches adolescence; serious criminality peaks around age 20; and the criminal impulse weakens as a man ages into his 30s and beyond.  It follows testosterone levels over the life-course. (There is another pattern of rebellious adolescence which starts later, ends much earlier, and remains more superficial than what we see with the hard cases.)

And one of the only ways to stop the biologically-driven career criminal is to incapacitate him behind bars. 

And perhaps even dumber than setting hard cases free is to allow them conjugal visits, so we increase the rate of hard cases into the next generation.

Monday, December 17, 2018

Data: Cleanliness is next to godliness, or the irreligious are slobs

In the last post, I accidentally discovered that people with no religion have the dirtiest homes of all religious statuses.  Let's look at this a little more. Below you will see mean dirtiness scores by church attendance. I'll limit the analysis to whites -- blacks show no trend:

Mean dirtiness score

Never attends  2.11
< one per year  2.04
Once per year  1.87
Several times per year  1.85
Once a month  1.91
2-3 times a month  1.85
Nearly every week  1.77
Every week  1.64
More than weekly 1.72

You can see here a tendency for more religious people to keep a cleaner home. This is consistent with my earlier point that religious individuals tend to be more conscientious or self-disciplined.  Lazy people, even if they believers, may want to stay in bed on a cold Sunday morning. Keep in mind that the gaps are not big here: If we focus on the largest difference, never attenders vs. weeklies, the gap is close to one-half of a standard deviation --  a moderate difference.

UPDATE: I just a quick look at dirtiness scores by political orientation. The pattern is very similar to that for religiosity: extremely conservative people are about half a standard deviation cleaner than extreme liberals.

Saturday, December 15, 2018

Data: Do immigrants make America dirtier?

Pacific Life pulled its ads from Fox News after Tucker Carlson said immigrants make America dirtier. In my experience, black and Hispanic communities tend to be dirtier than white neighborhoods (although I lived in a clean middle-class, predominantly black neighborhood), but is this the case for immigrants? 

I don't have data for neighborhoods, but General Social Survey interviewers rated people's homes during interviews. Ratings ranged from very clean (1) to dirty (5).  The mean for people born in the country is 1.93; for immigrants, it's 1.86. So immigrants' homes are slightly cleaner.

Tucker might have had a white/immigrant comparison in mind. The white mean is 1.88 -- a number similar to immigrants.

Let's look at a dirtiness ranking among selected ethnic groups in the US:

Mean household dirtiness (N = 3,657)

Black  2.17
American Indian  2.17
Mexican  2.04
Irish  1.91
Swedish  1.91
Chinese  1.90
Filipino  1.90
India  1.90
German  1.87
Polish  1.85
English/Welsh  1.85
Puerto Rican  1.82
Italian  1.73
Russian  1.71
Greek  1.65

Blacks, American Indians, and to a lesser extent, Mexican Americans have the highest dirtiness ratings which is consistent with my experience of neighborhoods.  Greeks are the cleanest.  It seems to me that cleanliness is a measure of conscientiousness. Jews seem conscientious, so let's look at religion, too, and see if the numbers match my thinking.

Buddhist  2.13
None  2.10
Protestant  1.91
Catholic  1.84
Hindu  1.84
Muslim  1.76
Jews  1.68

Jews come in the cleanest. Buddhists and people with no religion are the dirtiest.  Religious people do tend to be more conscientious.  Keep in mind the differences are not large.  The gap between Greeks and blacks/American Indians is only one-half of a standard deviation.

It's possible that people differ somewhat in terms of indoor and outdoor behavior.  I'm messy in my house but freak out if I drop a gum wrapper in a public place.

Thursday, December 13, 2018

Data: Among East Asians, are lighter-skinned people smarter than darker ones?

Three times in a row (for Hispanics, whites, and Asian Indians), I've shown that the lighter skinned members of a group tend to be smarter than darker members.

I now find the same pattern for a small sample of East Asians born in the US (n = 24). The correlation between darkness and IQ (based on a vocabulary test) is -.16 -- a small effect.

Note: A potential confound occurs to me. Do lower IQ people spend more time in the sun?  With larger samples, it might make sense to look at the sexes specifically.  Lower IQ men might work outside more, but I wouldn't expect this for low IQ women. 

Tuesday, December 11, 2018

Data: Are lighter-skinned Asian Indians smarter than their darker counterparts?

As I've done in the last couple posts, I correlated the skin tone of General Social Survey participants with IQ scores -- this time for people whose ancestors are from India.

The sample is small, only 39, but the correlation is impressive: -.40. In plain English, the tendency for lighter Indians to be smarter is fairly strong.

This is the third group in a row (Hispanics, whites, now Indians) that has showed the same positive lightness/IQ correlation.

Monday, December 10, 2018

Data: Are pasty whites smarter than olive-skinned whites?

This study shows some evidence for what some contend; that northern Europeans tend to be more intelligent than Mediterranean people. In a recent analysis of General Social Survey data, I found little evidence that IQ varies among whites by which European country your ancestors come from.

As an alternative approach, let's see if there is a correlation between skin tone, as rated by interviewers, and IQ among self-identified whites. Keep in mind IQ is measured with a vocabulary test.

It turns out the the correlation for a sample of 3,162 whites is -.13, meaning there is a slight tendency for pasty whites to be smarter than olive-skinned whites.

Don't accuse me of bias: While my ancestry is 100% northern European, people always ask me if I'm Italian or something. My maternal grandfather was a dead ringer for Vincent Gardenia ("You've got three kinds of pipe").

Friday, December 07, 2018

Data: Are lighter-skinned Hispanics smarter than those with a darker tone?

The General Social Survey (GSS) had interviewers rate the skin tone of respondents from 1 (lightest) to 10 (darkest). This can serve as a rough proxy of European ancestry. GSS also gave them a ten-question vocabulary quiz which is highly correlated with verbal IQ.  I limited the analysis to Hispanics born in this country who self-identified as white (N= 185).

The correlation between IQ and skin tone is -.28, which indicates a medium-strength association between European ancestry and higher intelligence. 

Data: Both men and women are happiest if they have one sexual partner

The last post showed that men with a minimum of one sexual partner in the past year are happier than men with nobody.  But does a man gain more happiness as the partners increase beyond one? Here's a graph showing mean happiness by partner number:

We see that mean happiness drops back down to the celibate level beyond one partner with the exception of the very small number of guys saying they had more than 100 partners.  

What about women? 

As with men, the happiest women had one partner last year. Celibates are less happy as are those with more partners. The mean happiness for the very small number of women with more than 100 partners is very low. 

Thursday, December 06, 2018

Data: Are men who have a sexual partner happier?

Writing about sexual inequality among males got me wondering about the bottom line: Are men who have no partners unhappy? 

As we discussed before, the General Social Survey asked people how many sexual partners they had in the past year. They also asked if the person was generally very happy, pretty happy, or not too happy these days.

The graph shows that men with at least one partner tend to be happier. Specifically, 32% with at least one partner is very happy, compared to only 23% of those with no one.

On the other extreme, 19% of the celibate guys were not too happy, while the number for the other group was only 11%.

So having a sex partner is associated with happiness. We just don't know what's causing what. I like to think that sex is not as important as elite culture assures us it is, but it could be the driving force here.

On the other hand, unhappy people might have less luck finding and holding on to partners. I suspect more and more that personality traits, which are grounded in brain wiring and are due to a large extent to genes, explain a lot.  It might be, for example, that people who score high on negative emotionality are more likely to find themselves alone. 

Wednesday, December 05, 2018

Data shocker: Higher status men tend to have more attractive wives

After blogging recently on sexual inequality among men, I'm surprised that it's so easy for people to be so skeptical about basic ideas that come from evolutionary theory.  I would never question that some men have more sex than others. It's obvious. I don't naturally waste limited mental energy on this type of issue until someone comes along and questions it.

So, it made me wonder: How many people doubt that high status men tend to have better looking wives?  Here's a graph from GSS based on 587 women whose physical attractiveness was rated by interviewers (1-5) and who were asked the educational level of their spouses:

The x-axis is years of school completed by the husband, and the y-axis is the mean of the wives' attractiveness.

You can see that attractiveness tends to rise with the husband's education. To get specific, high school dropouts have wives that are roughly three-fifths of a standard deviation less attractive than the most educated group.

I don't know about you, but I'm shocked.

UPDATE:  I'm overeducated and have a smokin' hot wife, so I'm biased.

ANOTHER UPDATE:  I suspect the status-hotness relationship would be even stronger if men rated the women. Most GSS interviewers are women, and I strongly suspect they tend to be biased toward rating a woman's face, dress, cosmetics, etc., while men tend to focus on curves.

Data: Hirono is a moron -- Republican mean IQ is 2 points higher than mean Dem IQ

In this video, Senator Hirono explains that Democrats have a difficult time connecting to voters because, like the worst math teacher you ever had, they are simply too smart.

Ms. Hirono with her enormous brain should be able to understand this: According to the General Social Survey (GSS) data, those of us who vote Republican have higher average IQs than those pull the lever for Democrats.

The most recent data we have is for 2012. GSS participants are given a 10-question vocabulary quiz, which is a serviceable measure of IQ. I converted the vocab scores to IQ scores, setting the mean at the US average -- 98 (Did I just hear the fish from SpongeBob say, "WAH, Wah, wah"?).  More than 2,000 people were also asked about their 2012 vote.

The results? The mean IQ score for those who voted for Obama was 97.0. For Romney, it was  99.1. Not even close.

UPDATE: Even more depressing news: The actual mean IQ in the US is more like 97 than 98, so we can adjust the Dem mean down to 96.0, and the GOP mean down to 98.1. And if current immigration trends continue, we can all look forward to those numbers continuing to drop over the next few decades.

Tuesday, December 04, 2018

Intelligent Christianity creates the foundation for science, while the universities are trying to destroy it

I knew reading America's greatest philosopher, Charles Peirce, would pay off.  He has taught me the root of our current predicament.

You're baffled that supposedly intelligent people now claim there are 56 genders? Peirce informs us that the villain is William of Ockham. You say you're shocked? Isn't Ockham that awesome dude who said that the simpler is more likely to be true? Well, let me educate you. Ockham is an ass.

Plato got it wrong when he claimed that the redness we see in an apple is actually a property that exists in the World of Forms, and is only imperfectly instantiated in a particular apple. In other words, redness truly exists independently of any particular red things.

Then the greatest philosopher in the history of the world, Aristotle, said, "Master Plato, you're off your rocker." He explained that redness is a real thing but it only exists in particular objects.

Later, the Catholic Church fervently embraced Aristotle. Ockham was a devout Catholic, but he got some bad ideas from Muslim fools about God's omnipotence, and ended up concluding that what we call redness is just something humans impose on objects. To Ockham, there are just unique, particular things, and we invent classes and categories.  Do you hear a whisper here?  I can make it out: "Social construction..."

The amazing thing is that modern philosophers took Ockham and ran with it at the same time that modern science was progressing by leaps and bounds based on the old fashioned belief that there are such things as natural classifications. Not just hydrogen and helium, but male and female.

Ockham's view is called "nominalism." Aristotle's is called "realism."  Modern philosophers are generally nominalists, while scientists operate like realists, whether they know it or not.

Until now. Now we see social scientists take Ockham seriously, and it's no surprise that categories that were taken for granted for centuries are now under assault. Nominalists are ANTI-science. They tend to reduce all understanding to dust.

But you science lovers say,"We'll at least they aren't TRUE anti-science people like those evil Catholics." The truth is that in the Roman Catholic church, it is a damn HERESY to be a nominalist. I'm not kidding.

Intelligent Christianity creates the foundation for science, while the universities are trying to destroy it.

Monday, December 03, 2018

I pray Google Ads doesn't understand our readers

The last post mentioned machine learning.  Look at a current Inductivist ad link below: PLEASE don't tell me that some machine is figuring out the tastes of our readers.

Current Inductivist ad

Study reveals an evil secret: You can look at a brain and tell whether it is a man or woman

In this new study, the researchers use MRIs to measure examines the brains of a fairly large sample (N = 1,300) of incarcerated men and women. They use machine learning to classify sex. They are able to predict whether the brain is of a male or a female with 93% accuracy.  This finding replicated what the authors found earlier with a healthy, non-incarcerated sample. 

Now, how are these findings possible when every good person knows men and women have interchangeable brains, and to think otherwise makes you a Neanderthal? 

The researchers also found that there were certain brain regions that are highly differentiated: the orbitofrontal and frontopolar regions, larger in females, and the anterior medial temporal regions, which are larger in males.  Reduced functioning in the orbitofrontal region has been linked to aggression and violence.  The anterior temporal cortex is closely connected to limbic and paralimbic structures that influence social and emotional processing, traits associated with disinhibition and violent/aggressive behavior. 

The frontopolar and orbitofrontal regions are also crucial  in moral judgment and planning behavior. The temporoparietal junction is also important for execution of attentional shifts required for perspective-taking, theory of mind, and empathy. 

This is also consistent with the behavioral deficits males show with respect to interpersonal skills, empathy, threat sensitivity, disinhibition, and aggression. 

Conclusion: Grandma was right--men and women are (biologically) different.   

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 ...