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View Diary: Not So Fast Summers (270 comments)

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  •  Yes (4.00)
    He said this:

    There are three broad hypotheses about the sources of the very substantial disparities that this conference's papers document and have been documented before with respect to the presence of women in high-end scientific professions. One is what I would call the-I'll explain each of these in a few moments and comment on how important I think they are-the first is what I call the high-powered job hypothesis. The second is what I would call different availability of aptitude at the high end, and the third is what I would call different socialization and patterns of discrimination in a search. And in my own view, their importance probably ranks in exactly the order that I just described.

    "Different availability of aptitude at the high end."

    Men are better than women at it if you want to take your blinders off.

    The SCOTUS is Extraordinary.

    by Armando on Wed Sep 21, 2005 at 07:22:45 AM PDT

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    •  sigh (none)
      We've been over this a million times.  What Summers said was that men have greater variability in scientific ability.  So there are more genius men than genius women, but there are also more idiot men than idiot women.  He did not say that on average men are smarter than women.

      From your description this study doesn't refute that statement at all.  Nevertheless, I'll take a look at it and get back to you.  

      A gaffe in Washington is when you tell the truth and people act surprised.

      by hotshotxi on Wed Sep 21, 2005 at 07:30:04 AM PDT

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      •  There are more (none)
        genius women than men?

        So all acacdemics in the sciences are geniuses?

        No kidding? Pleaase. We have been over this and you don't want to deal with the import of his statements.

        They mean what they mean.

        The SCOTUS is Extraordinary.

        by Armando on Wed Sep 21, 2005 at 07:32:32 AM PDT

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      •  I just reread the excerpts now, (none)
        and if you are correct, then there would be no difference between #2 and #3.  I at least give summers more credit than to repackage the same point as two different points.

        Q:"You've called Bush a loser." A:"And a liar." Q:"You apologized for the loser comment." A:"But never for the liar, have I?" - Rolling Stone with Harry Reid

        by alivingston on Wed Sep 21, 2005 at 07:50:07 AM PDT

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        •  Why???? (none)
          I at least give summers more credit than to repackage the same point as two different points.

          Why would you grant him this "credit"?  Repackaging the same point as two different points (as 14 different articles) is the hallmark of academic publishing, and thus academic success.  Its also the mark of a successful politician.  Summers is both.  Odds are that he's most likely to have only one idea a life time and to try and build a career around that.

          In a democratic society some are guilty, but all are responsible. -Rabbi Abraham Joshua Heschel

          by a gilas girl on Wed Sep 21, 2005 at 08:55:17 AM PDT

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      •  sorry, meant my comment (none)
        for hadnot.

        Q:"You've called Bush a loser." A:"And a liar." Q:"You apologized for the loser comment." A:"But never for the liar, have I?" - Rolling Stone with Harry Reid

        by alivingston on Wed Sep 21, 2005 at 07:52:23 AM PDT

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      •  You're right. In this instance, Armando's wrong. (none)
        For proof please see this comment.

        f/k/a one of the people "`Our country, right or wrong!' . . . when right to be kept right; when wrong to be put right." (Sen. Carl Schurz)

        by another American on Wed Sep 21, 2005 at 12:23:19 PM PDT

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    •  whatever (none)
      Obviously this debate has been beaten into the ground on many occasions, but we all know that Summers meant at the high end of the distribution of math ability (i.e,. there are more male math wizzes -- the type that become professors at Harvard -- than female).  I guess for simple minds this is translated as men are better than women at math, but continually repeating it, Armando, doesn't make it true.
      •  Yes (none)
        I'll let his words speak for him, not yours.

        I can read English as well as you thank you.

        Funny, how so many people understood it my way.

         

        The SCOTUS is Extraordinary.

        by Armando on Wed Sep 21, 2005 at 07:33:51 AM PDT

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        •  no (none)
          Not sure what I can say to that except you clearly do not read English well if that is your take away from Summers statement.  As for how many people understood it your way -- what kind of argument is that?  Many people believed Iraq was in bed with Osama...

          Just admit you are trying to make a point and twisting Summers words to do so.  Of course, you won't admit that's the case... but many people understand it to be true.

          •  dude, chill (none)
            I was trying to address your point and responded to wrong comment, but

            if you are correct, then there would be no difference between #2 and #3.  I at least give summers more credit than to repackage the same point as two different points.

            Q:"You've called Bush a loser." A:"And a liar." Q:"You apologized for the loser comment." A:"But never for the liar, have I?" - Rolling Stone with Harry Reid

            by alivingston on Wed Sep 21, 2005 at 07:54:24 AM PDT

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            •  Why give him any credit at all? (4.00)
              Lots of people give Bush credit he doesn't deserve because they assume the POTUS couldn't possibly be as crazy as Bush clearly is.

              Yes, Summers did specifically refer to "aptitude at the high levels." BUT. People only say stuff like that when they really think is "men are better than women at math." It's code. You take your offensive attitudes and repackage them into the worst thing you think you can get away with.

              "I don't hate black people -- just those awful gangsta rappers!" "I don't think women are stupid in math -- I just think there aren't as many women who are REALLY REALLY GOOD in math!"

              Any time there is a huge gender disparity in something we should take a look at that thing and where the disparity comes from -- and try to eliminate prejudices and artificial social barriers. We might eliminate all of that stuff and still find more men than women teaching math at ivy league schools. Or we might not. But Summer's comment, even if it were not sexist, is still a cop-out -- he's saying, "nothing to fix here -- the girls just don't wanna teach math!"

              So, it's sexist. And it's lazy.

              •  you and I are making the same point, (none)
                look at the comment flow.

                Q:"You've called Bush a loser." A:"And a liar." Q:"You apologized for the loser comment." A:"But never for the liar, have I?" - Rolling Stone with Harry Reid

                by alivingston on Wed Sep 21, 2005 at 09:01:22 AM PDT

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              •  Is it da Vinci or Bible code? (none)
                BUT. People only say stuff like that when they really think is "men are better than women at math." It's code.

                Paranoia is treatable, you know. Although a recent study says the medications don't work as well as advertised...
              •  Gangsta (none)
                If I hate gangsta rappers that's code for I hate black people? Hm.

                So when I say I hate it when Geto Boys or some group busts a dope rhyme about rapin' and killin' some bitch, that's just code ... I'm really saying I don't want black people to talk about human rights, or anything at all for that matter, right? I hate all black singers, too I guess, right?

                The ability of some people to see racist intent in virtually any actions or words whatsoever... it's like seeing Jesus in a cheese sandwich. But the latter is funny and harmless, and the former is pernicious and destructive...

          •  Nonsense (none)
            I qote his words. And in English they mean what they mean.

            I twisrt nothing.

            In my own view, is what Summers said, these are three possibilities and factors.

            And number 2 says what it says. And he says it is the second most important.

            Sheesh.

            The SCOTUS is Extraordinary.

            by Armando on Wed Sep 21, 2005 at 08:25:56 AM PDT

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      •  The far greater fallacy (4.00)
        in this line of thinking, however, is that higher level ability in math leads to "success as an academic, even at a place like Harvard".  Being a successful academic does not really require genuis ability in your subject, it requires an ability to publish a great deal, which is the operational standard we use to measure "genuis", "smartness" and "success", but the skills to publish a great deal are not the same as "higher math and science ability".  And all of those skills are very, very, very heavily socially mediated.

        In a democratic society some are guilty, but all are responsible. -Rabbi Abraham Joshua Heschel

        by a gilas girl on Wed Sep 21, 2005 at 08:59:17 AM PDT

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      •  Hmm... (4.00)
        I must have a simple mind.

        I guess it doesn't really matter to me whether someone has said a) there are more women dummies than men dummies, or b) there are fewer women geniuses than men geniuses.

        I'm still insulted either way.

    •  "There are three broad hypotheses..." (none)
      That statement is a bit instructive. Hypotheses are testable statements representing different thoughts as to the explanation of some phenomenon.

      Summers was recounting what he saw discussed as different explanations for an outcome. That's perfectly reasonable. He didn't endorse that one as the one he thinks is correct.

      •  I think a bit later on... (none)
        he says something to the effect of "I think the data can only be explained by using each of these factors." I'm too lazy to go look for it now though. :-)
      •  Pffft (none)
        " And in my own view, their importance probably ranks in exactly the order that I just described."

        Sheesh.

        The SCOTUS is Extraordinary.

        by Armando on Wed Sep 21, 2005 at 08:24:04 AM PDT

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        •  In my own view .... probably (none)
          Not exactly a ringing endorsement that the scientific community should accept the idea.

          Although many people misuse the terms, to a well-trained scientist, a hypothesis is NOT a theory. It is a potential theory which needs to be investigated.

          The fact that someone has personal views about the likely outcomes of any investigation is normal. But unless you are an Aristotelian, someone's personal views sans experimentation are not valid evidence.

    •  No. You've misstated Summers's remarks. (none)

      Please see my comment detailing what Summers actually said and its consistency with the Shibley Hyde paper.


      f/k/a one of the people "`Our country, right or wrong!' . . . when right to be kept right; when wrong to be put right." (Sen. Carl Schurz)

      by another American on Wed Sep 21, 2005 at 09:18:11 AM PDT

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