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That's right. Rush hit the nail on the head here (5/10/13):

And when [Richwine's thesis] was published, nobody had a problem with it.  
I completely agree.  This thesis was 166 pages long.  Does anyone really think that all three thesis advisors actually read it?  You can if you wish, here.

Let's flip to page 142, where in conclusion, now-Doctor Richwine writes:

... today's immigrants are not aa intelligent on average as white natives.  The IQ difference between the two groups is large enough to have substantial negative effects on the economy and on American society.  The deficit cannot be dismissed as meaningless or transient.  It is transferred across generations -- whether via genes, environment, or both -- in a manner that we do not yet know how to prevent.
And here's this humdinger from Harvard's own Hari Seldon:
... Do you suppose the Imperium could expose its shakiness in this manner?  That is a very simple demonstration in psychohistory.  But some of our results have leaked out among the aristocracy.
Oops, that was quote from the real Hari Seldon, psychohistorian.  Let's go to his counterpart, now-Doctor Richwine, from a planet on a far flung arm of the galaxy:
No one knows whether Hispanics will ever reach IQ parity with whites, but the prediction that new Hispanic immigrants will have low-IQ children and grandchildren is difficult to argue against.
Now-Doctor Richwine's thesis is chock full of numbers and acronyms.  I haven't the time or the skill to paw through them, but I don't need to.  If your conclusion is that two unborn generations will be of inferior intelligence to white people, I don't need to read any further.  

But to return to Rush -- what did he say?

And when [Richwine's thesis] was published, nobody had a problem with it.  
That's right.  None of the august scholars who sat on now-Doctor Richwine's thesis committee challenged any of these things.  There are really two possibilities here.  Either they read the thesis and agreed with it (which they will never admit), or, the more likely explanation, they didn't read it at all.

My guess is that the thesis made a nice "whump" when it hit the desk, and, flipping through it, it had some complicated mathematical formulas.  And so, the thought comes to you: "No one will ever read this, why should I?"  

Of course, when you take, oh, how shall one say ... shortcuts with science, you can have some problems.


Do you think you have what it takes to review doctoral dissertations at Harvard University?

7%13 votes
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| 166 votes | Vote | Results

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Comment Preferences

  •  Didn't he have to defend his dissertation in order (23+ / 0-)

    to get his doctorate?

    "Nothing in all the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity." --M. L. King "You can't fix stupid" --Ron White -6.00, -5.18

    by zenbassoon on Sat May 11, 2013 at 08:40:36 PM PDT

    •  Who knows, my father got his Ph.D., I looked at (20+ / 0-)

      it, and couldn't understand anything (it was in Mathematics).  Then he told me that he'd made a mistake in it which hadn't been detected by the Ph.D. committee.  

      Here there's really no way this thesis could be defended.  I conclude that whatever procedures were employed were cursory at best.

      You have exactly 10 seconds to change that look of disgusting pity into one of enormous respect!

      by Cartoon Peril on Sat May 11, 2013 at 08:45:40 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Yes, but the standards vary drastically, depending (13+ / 0-)

      on school, department, and your reviewers.  I've sat in on a couple defenses, and most were fairly painless, including that of one student I wasn't terribly impressed by, though since he was more biology than Computer Science, my standards may have been too high.  Mine went pretty smoothly, too.

      The thesis committee is expected to read the thesis, and I find it unlikely that any competent  thesis advisor would have read it more than once, though at a middling school like Harvard, you never know (That's only half a joke - Harvard isn't known for having professors the most concerned about their students.  I should note that I went to a rival school, so may have some bias).  It's possible the other members of the committee overlooked the overt racism, but I think it's unlikely.

      I probably wouldn't be a good reviewer for the dissertation - I could work my way through the math and the references, but I don't really see a whole lot of work there, compared to someone, who, say, actually does experiments in a lab, writes code, or works through novel formal proofs.  Also seems to be a lot of conjecture.

    •  I think he did have to defend it... (3+ / 0-)

      The problem is, he either cherry picked his advisors or found people who know nothing about psychology or genetics.  The use of intelligence testing in pseudo-scientific racism is at least 100 years old, but I'll bet none of his advisors are versed in the literature.  There are profound and fundamental errors in trying to measure intelligence as a single numerical value, in trying to create intelligence tests that are not culturally biased, and in the whe stupid and scientifically invalid concept of race as genetically significant.

      This jackass needs to have his dissertation ripped to shreds by those who know more, and his advisors have some explaining to do.  They really dishonor academia by not challenging bullshit like this when there's a whole literature out there refuting and challenging this creep's basic assumptions.

      “If the misery of the poor be caused not by the laws of nature, but by our institutions, great is our sin.” Charles Darwin

      by ivorybill on Sun May 12, 2013 at 08:29:01 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Doesn't the dissertation TOPIC (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        ivorybill, blueoasis

        have to be approved? I wonder who thought up this one, and who agreed that it was both academically challenging and appropriate. My understanding is that dissertations are supposed to at least attempt to contribute something to the body of knowledge in the particular field.

    •  Philip L Roth's 2001 meta-analysis does (0+ / 0-)

      suggest there are significant group differences. Although europeans aren't the highest scoring group. In fact, Richwine acknowledged in a 2009 Forbes article that Indian immigrants have the highest average scores - higher than european americans.

  •  A circle has no end but a spiral does (5+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    palantir, caul, Matt Z, Temmoku, James Kresnik

    Slow thinkers - keep right

    by Dave the Wave on Sat May 11, 2013 at 08:40:44 PM PDT

  •  The same could be said (4+ / 0-)
    And when [Richwine's thesis] was published, nobody had a problem with it.  
    substituting in [Martin Luther King Jr's thesis]

    nobody at the time seemed to have a problem with it either.

    Guess in the age of the internet, problems are just caught a lot faster

    Boston U. Panel Finds Plagiarism by Dr. King

    Published: October 11, 1991

    A committee of scholars appointed by Boston University concluded today that the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. plagiarized passages in his dissertation for a doctoral degree at the university 36 years ago.

    "There is no question," the committee said in a report to the university's provost, "but that Dr. King plagiarized in the dissertation by appropriating material from sources not explicitly credited in notes, or mistakenly credited, or credited generally and at some distance in the text from a close paraphrase or verbatim quotation."


    wonder who the committee members were who signed off on * that * ??

  •  Tipped for gratuitous Foundation referemce (18+ / 0-)

    Recommended for gratuitous Young Frankenstein video.

    When I was in junior college at Chabot i was taking a physics class. We were tasked with running experiments to demonstrate various physical properties. The experiment writeups were required to account for the difference between the predicted result and the measured result.
       This one particular experiment involved rolling a steel ball down a ramp and up off a precipice. We predicted how far the steel ball would travel before it hit. I explained that the difference between the predicted result and the measured result could be explained by sunspots, the jupiter effect and continental drift. It got a check mark just like always.

    Slow thinkers - keep right

    by Dave the Wave on Sat May 11, 2013 at 08:49:51 PM PDT

  •  scandalous (20+ / 0-)

    When I think about what my colleagues went through to get their PhD, this just makes me sad. My doctorate-level colleagues did years and years of original research after a grueling two years of classes and comps in methodology, multivariate biostats, required classes out of their major (public health). And then round after round after round of jumping through hoops having their dissertations reviewed and nitpicked and reviewed again and again, nitpicking Every. Single. Comma. let alone their mathematics and their methodology. Oh, their committees read and re-read every line. And then their defense. A rigorous morning or afternoon defending every hypothesis, every protocol, every analysis, every conclusion in a public forum with sometimes very hostile and egotistical panels. I have seen them driven to tears of frustration. They earned those damn letters with blood, sweat, and tears.

    And it wasn't just UCLA, but Johns Hopkins, every School of Public Health that I know of. And a PhD from Harvard is worth -- what? -- not much, evidently, but more prestigious than UCLA.

    And the Harvard degreed get so many of the grants handed to them where my colleagues have to work their ass off to get funded on original research. Harvard always gets published and my colleagues don't always get published. And it turns out these Hahhhhh-vid degrees are pretty much handed out like candy and their committee doesn't even read them or understand them.

    Pisses me off.

  •  notwithstanding their lack of Hispanic ancestry... (10+ / 0-)

    Notwithstanding their lack of Hispanic ancestry, Richwine's mentors showed very low intelligence when they approved his thesis.

  •  The essence of cigarette science (20+ / 0-)

    is to combine a bunch of facts and statistics in an intimidating way, then fabricate some graphs to back up your unsupported but ideologically profitable assertions, and start pitching to right-wing propaganda mlils/think tanks.  I think the thesis did a great job of that, and the home of Rogoff and Reinhard can also recognize that endowment-pumping combination of statistical weight-lifting and logical gymnastics.  I think the question is what sort of open quid pro quo did the Whorehouse on the Chuck get from foundations who were bidding on Bell-curve type eugenics and anti-immigrant screeds at the time, and what other deadly lies are festering behind that crimson imprimatur?

  •  For the record, (16+ / 0-)
    the prediction that new Hispanic immigrants will have low-IQ children and grandchildren is difficult to argue against.
    ALL predictions are impossible to argue against since there are no facts associated with something that hasn't happened.  

    However, it is perhaps noteworthy that the inability to distinguish between past, present and future seems quite characteristic of academics whose tutelage consists largely of accumulating and regurgitating data which require no processing. So, for example, the case study system of preparation for lawyers seems entirely suited to people who memorize reams of information for a profession that relies on precedent. Accountancy also seems well suited to individuals whose brains specialize in accumulating data in preestablished discrete categories. Psychiatry has a manual of categories into which patients are shoved and now the manual itself is being dismissed so psychiatrists can be refocused to pay attention to what's actually going on in the brain. Economics is convinced that it is an objective science because it reduces everything to numbers that are easy to count while ignoring that many of its assumptions and categories are false.

    The social sciences have a common problem. Their scholars think that because something can be measured, the measurement has meaning. Also, quantification is easy.

    We organize governments to deliver services and prevent abuse.

    by hannah on Sun May 12, 2013 at 03:33:59 AM PDT

    •  Amen, and tell it to the reformy education types (6+ / 0-)

      like Bill Gates.

    •  This is my main beef with "data driven..." (4+ / 0-)

      Data driven education takes this idea and then attempts to pay teachers for results.  

      My wife is dealing with some new requirements this year, and I bet these new requirements that have been put in place across the country will lead to qualified people not going into teaching.


      by otto on Sun May 12, 2013 at 06:55:12 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  For the record, really... (0+ / 0-)

      It is perfectly possible and common to argue against predictions before the facts are in. If you predict 100 heads in a row based on your latest theory of coin flippery, I would "argue against" your prediction using probability theory...and win. In this case, the argument is about the predictive model, so we don't need to wait for the coin.

      I would also argue against your overly broad and unfair characterization of scholars in the social sciences: "because something can be measured, the measurement has meaning." Typically, a metric is considered meaningful not because it exists, but because its utility has actually been demonstrated: for example, the relationship between the metric, "years of education" and employment and earnings is well established. Now, we can very effectively measure the circumference of your head and map the lumps on your scalp, but scholars today would not think that measurement has any meaning...they ruled that out a long time ago.

      IQ is a relatively useful measure of cognitive ability for some populations. Richwine assumes the meaning of IQ is generalizable across diverse populations. Fortunately, social scientists who measure stuff are picking apart those kinds of assumptions. Quantification is easy (sort of), but that is not the goal of the vast majority of social scientists. We seek meaningful measures.

  •  Citations? (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Kevskos, Cartoon Peril

    Has this paper ever been cited as a source by another paper? Those are the only people who have read the paper at all.
    (It's not common for a dissertation to be widely cited, but it does occur).

    •  It was NEVER "published" at all, (3+ / 0-)

      except in "Dissertation Abstracts International," which no one ever reads unless they're looking up a specific dissertation.  Translation of Limaughese:  His dissertation committee passed him.  Ignorant asshole.

      "If you don't read the newspapers, you're uninformed. If you do read the newspapers, you're misinformed." -- M. Twain

      by Oliver St John Gogarty on Sun May 12, 2013 at 08:09:27 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  And technically (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        on ProQuest Digital Dissertations, where I downloaded it yesterday.

        Maybe the K School needs to get with open source movement in academia and publish all of its theses and dissertations in an open academic repository or commons.

        Come on, let he public see the work being heavily subsidized, I assure you, by tax dollars and public investment.

        “I wore black because ... it's still my symbol of rebellion -- against a stagnant status quo, against our hypocritical houses of God, against people whose minds are closed to others' ideas.” -- Johnny Cash

        by RocketJSquirrel on Sun May 12, 2013 at 08:44:44 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Dumping something into an Internet data (0+ / 0-)

          base is hardly "publishing" in any common sense of the term as Limbaugh used it.  Of course, no one objected to it--no one outside of his committee would have any reason to read it.

          "If you don't read the newspapers, you're uninformed. If you do read the newspapers, you're misinformed." -- M. Twain

          by Oliver St John Gogarty on Sun May 12, 2013 at 09:10:12 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Apologies, I wasn't saying (0+ / 0-)

            Limbaugh was right, and mostly only university affiliates would ever use ProQuest to read dissertation literature (I do it every day). But technically, every phd dissertation must be "published" in this sense -- ProQuest used to be University Microfilms and before that each University library held a bound copy of that institution's dissertations.

            This makes Richwine's committee's lack of oversight a failure not only of pedagogy but of peer review.

            “I wore black because ... it's still my symbol of rebellion -- against a stagnant status quo, against our hypocritical houses of God, against people whose minds are closed to others' ideas.” -- Johnny Cash

            by RocketJSquirrel on Sun May 12, 2013 at 09:21:25 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Didn't know that a computer repository had (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:

              replaced the home institution library copy.  It's been a while since I left academia.  Wow -- life is just too easy for academics in these Internet days -- no long hours in the library and no shelves full of mostly useless journal pages.  

              "If you don't read the newspapers, you're uninformed. If you do read the newspapers, you're misinformed." -- M. Twain

              by Oliver St John Gogarty on Sun May 12, 2013 at 12:29:56 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

          •  And by the way (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Ditch Mitch KY

            one social scientist to another, I'm really enjoying your comments on Rochwine, so thanks for your expertise here.

            “I wore black because ... it's still my symbol of rebellion -- against a stagnant status quo, against our hypocritical houses of God, against people whose minds are closed to others' ideas.” -- Johnny Cash

            by RocketJSquirrel on Sun May 12, 2013 at 09:22:38 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

      •  I was a bad person (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Calamity Jean, JeffW, Cartoon Peril

        and once gave my friend, whose dissertation had just been passed, a 20 dollar bill and told him to leave it tucked into the copy that would reside in the university library. I bet it would still be there in 20 years. Time is almost up!

  •  Your initial link (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Cartoon Peril, RocketJSquirrel

    http://www.what his deep and broad collection of data _richwine

    is fictional. I believe you meant the following. Could you fix that? _leftists_and_rinos_attempt_to_destroy_heritage_scholar _jason_richwine

    Cabal of Leftists and RINOs Attempt to Destroy Heritage Scholar Jason Richwine

    What is happening to Jason Richwine is inexcusable.

    (No, Rush, you are inexcusable.)

    Ceterem censeo, gerrymandra delenda est

    by Mokurai on Sun May 12, 2013 at 05:32:16 AM PDT

  •  As a tenured prof (16+ / 0-)

    who has advised 15 dissertations and served on omitted or dozens more, this airy is spot on.

    Richwine's committee did not read this.

    Luckily it's on Proquest, so I am reading it now.  Utter tripe too.

    “I wore black because ... it's still my symbol of rebellion -- against a stagnant status quo, against our hypocritical houses of God, against people whose minds are closed to others' ideas.” -- Johnny Cash

    by RocketJSquirrel on Sun May 12, 2013 at 05:52:53 AM PDT

    •  I honestly don't see how this could have been (6+ / 0-)

      read.  Forget about statistics (which I'm guessing have been manipulated)  

      Would anyone (except for Now-Doctor Richwine) have put their name on a thesis which concluded that the grandchildren of Hispanics were going less intelligent than the grandchildren of whites?

      You have exactly 10 seconds to change that look of disgusting pity into one of enormous respect!

      by Cartoon Peril on Sun May 12, 2013 at 06:43:16 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Probably don't have to manipulate stats (4+ / 0-)

        (I haven't read the thesis).  But if you are just measuring standard IQ tests of 2nd generation immigrants vs. natives, then language difficulties will be more than enough to skew the statistics.  
        You also need to correct for poverty skew (i.e. hungry children do more poorly on tests because they're...HUNGRY) and such.  It's possible to do that, the committee should have asked about it (not that I bothered to check if he did).

        I graduated in the hard sciences.  Thesis there tended to be more binary, i.e. "does the code do what you said it does."

        Minority rights should never be subject to majority vote.

        by lostboyjim on Sun May 12, 2013 at 07:34:22 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  No data can predict IQ scores for two generations (3+ / 0-)

          down the road.  That's pseudo-science at best and racism at worst.  Or both.

          You have exactly 10 seconds to change that look of disgusting pity into one of enormous respect!

          by Cartoon Peril on Sun May 12, 2013 at 07:44:02 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Sorry, I didn't speak clearly (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Cartoon Peril

            I meant that current testing of 2nd gen immigrants is going to show them at lower IQ scores would show them lower due to language difficulties and poverty skew.

            Actually, once you think about it, you should expect IQ scores to rise dramatically from generation to generation as they become more and more integrated into society (both in terms of language, and 'tests in the US').

            Minority rights should never be subject to majority vote.

            by lostboyjim on Sun May 12, 2013 at 07:58:59 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

        •  It's more than being just hungry. (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Calamity Jean
          You also need to correct for poverty skew (i.e. hungry children do more poorly on tests because they're...HUNGRY)
          A diet deficient in essential protein (amino acids) in young children interferes with brain growth and development.  That deficiency and the damage done is not reversible or curable.  A few years of hunger can seal an individual's future for the worst

          "If knowledge can create problems, it is not through ignorance that we can solve them. Isaac Asimov (8.25 / -5.64}

          by carver on Sun May 12, 2013 at 09:05:54 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  And chronic malnutrition in childhood can (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          You also need to correct for poverty skew (i.e. hungry children do more poorly on tests because they're...HUNGRY) and such.
          cause actual permanent reduction in IQ that is completely non-genetic.  

          Renewable energy brings national global security.     

          by Calamity Jean on Sun May 12, 2013 at 03:15:15 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  It would be excellent if you told them (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      fou, Ditch Mitch KY

      They should keep hearing how they didn't read it.  THey need to keep hearing the conclusions that they had no argument against.  

      OTOH, maybe they just didn't want to have to talk to the committed racist idealogue anymore, and they were just happy that he was leaving.  


      by otto on Sun May 12, 2013 at 06:57:09 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Important data on IQ which demolishes Richwine (16+ / 0-)

    published in, of all places, The American Conservative. Go figure...

    It's a long article, so to sum up the point the author makes very broadly, the available data on IQ specific to certain ethnic and national groups shows conclusively that IQ is changeable for any group over time, and that economic wealth (and all the advantages that pertain thereto) directly affects IQ. This conclusion applies to Hispanics, Irish, Italians, Southern Europeans, and Germans, among others.

    The notion that Hispanics are inherently and permanently dumber than white people is nothing other than racist horseshit, as it always has been when applied to any particular group.

    While the assertion of such twaddle is of course injurious to any and all people so targeted, there is a silver lining nonetheless. As Rush Limbaugh and the other wingnut whiners who control the ideological levers of the Republican Party have very predictably come to Richwine's defense, it further cements into place in the mind of Hispanic Americans this central truth: the people who run the GOP think they're fit only to clean their pools, mow their lawns, and change their pampered kids' diapers.

    Good luck with that in coming elections.

    •  Yes, but there's something else there too, and (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Kimbeaux, Bonsai66, catwho, Johnny Nucleo

      that's that likely no one would have noticed this had Richwine not put his signature on the Heritage "report".

      Which raises the question then as to whether racism is accepted at Harvard's JFK School of Government.  This evidence suggests that it is.

      You have exactly 10 seconds to change that look of disgusting pity into one of enormous respect!

      by Cartoon Peril on Sun May 12, 2013 at 06:58:23 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Something called the "Flynn effect" is (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      RocketJSquirrel, Oh Mary Oh

      the steady, and cumulatively very large,  increase of population scores on IQ tests, especially in developed countries, across the last 70-80 years, especially among those in the lower and middle range of scores.  This extremely robust finding raises all sorts of questions about the biological determination of IQ and group differences in scores across time and/or generations.  I intend to write a diary on this in the next few days and will scan Richwine's dissertation to see if he accounts for it in his analysis and interpretation of his data.  If he didn't, then his dissertation is an even bigger POS than just his abstract suggests that it is.  

      "If you don't read the newspapers, you're uninformed. If you do read the newspapers, you're misinformed." -- M. Twain

      by Oliver St John Gogarty on Sun May 12, 2013 at 08:26:11 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  6% of readers have PhD's in math? wow! n/t (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Cartoon Peril

    The GOP: Fearing things that have never existed while ignoring things that have always existed, i.e. gun registration/starvation.

    by StevenJoseph on Sun May 12, 2013 at 07:38:29 AM PDT

  •  Harvard is slipping (5+ / 0-)

    My little state university's graduate MIS program, the one I just graduated from on Friday, surpassed them in the national rankings for graduate level MIS.

    So did half a dozen other state universities.

    It takes a lot to dislodge an entrenched reputation of a big school, but incidents like this are what begins to chip away at it, and the national rankings are starting to reflect it as well.

    The Cake is a lie. In Pie there is Truth. ~ Fordmandalay

    by catwho on Sun May 12, 2013 at 08:13:23 AM PDT

  •  Add to poll... (0+ / 0-)

    Yes, My father/Brother/Mother/Sister went to Harvard. Which in my case is true. That might even make me a genius! LOL!

    Isn’t it ironic to think that man might determine his own future by something so seemingly trivial as the choice of an insect spray. ~ Rachel Carson, Silent Spring ~

    by MA Liberal on Sun May 12, 2013 at 08:31:05 AM PDT

  •  Im not going to read this piece of crap PHD...but. (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    catwho, Calamity Jean, Cartoon Peril

    if i was, Ild look for a few things.

    1) the Bell CUrve was a book published @20 years ago which made similar accusations about IQ (though more focused on Af AMericans). This piece of work was taken apart and proved wrong masterfully. When making accusations about Hispanic IQs, did the author engage any of the arguments against IQ and IQ differentials among races?

    2) Race is a poor biological concept. It does not describe very much. How is the author defining race?

    2a) Latinos/Hispanics are very heterogeneous. ON the one hand, they represent a "race" that did not exist in any way shape or form prior to 1492, on the other hand discussing Hispanics as a unique "race" has only really entered the lexicon over the last 20 years and primarily as a social construction for political reasons. How are "hispanics" defined as a race?

    2b) If we accept "Hispanic" as a racial (read: biological) concept, how do we adjust for the fact that various Latinos from all over latin america are a mixture of european, indigenous, and african ancestry to varying degrees. Is there variation in IQ levels based on how much ancestry one has in these different groups (ie more european and indegenous than african--which would be most mexicans for example--or more african and european like you may find in the caribean countries and parts of venezuela--or even exclusively european which can be easily found among cubans or argentines). Do hispanics from latin america who are primarily of european ancetry show IQ rates similar to those folks in the USA of primarily european ancestry?

    2c) Hispanic is really a linguistic term and excludes Brazilians. Are IQs different between hispaic latin americans and non-hispanic latin americans? This is not about being "politically correct" and calling one group a special specific name and pulling them out of the generalization. It is about intellectual precision which is required in a PhD from a respectable University.

    3) Is the writer considering in qualitative manner the effects of racial and ethnic discrimination? When I was a grad student I was fortunate to take courses with Anthropologist Lieth Mullings. This was a point she would often make: we must consider the effects of discimiation in a qualitative manner AND it is hard to measure the effects of discrimination.

    Im so fucking sick of academics in niche disciplines and policy positions making statements and policy about issues such as race and not addressing the House of Cards on which all of their assumptions rest. Look fuckers, just as your Math and your English needs to spot on in any PhD dissertation, so does your fucking anthropology and sociology.

    I cant tell if its a West End musical or Marxism in action.

    by Evolution on Sun May 12, 2013 at 08:39:54 AM PDT

    •  Probably using census definitions (0+ / 0-)

      Note the Risch & Tang's 2005 paper found that self identified ethnicity did correspond to genetic clusters - that also included hispanic americans, although they are of course a more diverse group.

      You could look at data like that used by Telles & Ortiz who found after 4 generations there is a significant lag in educational outcomes. They attribute environmental causes, but cognitive ability is significantly heritable so environmental and heritable factors could be involved. David C Rowe did some studies in the 90's trying to find an x-factor that was depressing scores in particular groups, but couldn't find any. The developmental processes and heritability seemed similar across groups.

  •  This Sentence Escaped Notice (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Ditch Mitch KY, Calamity Jean

    of this guy's thesis committee, and his degree was granted.

    "No one knows whether Hispanics will ever reach IQ parity with whites, but the prediction that new Hispanic immigrants will have low-IQ children and grandchildren is difficult to argue against."

    Such a meaningless string of drivel would not escape an undergraduate composition instructor on the basis of inanity alone.

    Prediction???  Any prediction based on flimsy racist assertions of genetically inherited IQ scores is one of the easiest statements to argue against that's ever been committed to paper.

    A self-respecting thesis committee member would have nipped this faux scholarship in the bud by simply informing the candidate that his premise is fallacious and that research overwhelming demonstrates that.

    Pick another topic, such as the neurological evidence that ultra-conservatives are lower functioning unreasoning beings than are liberal leaning persons.

    No one knows whether Republicans will ever reach IQ parity with Democrats, but the prediction that gun-hugging, ideological, privileged, white male Ayn Rand worshipers will have high-IQ children and grandchildren is difficult to argue against.

    Readers & Book Lovers Pull up a chair! You're never too old to be a Meta Groupie

    by Limelite on Sun May 12, 2013 at 09:04:39 AM PDT

  •  The 1st sentence of the abstract - immediate cause (4+ / 0-)

    for sending this tract back to the drawing board.

    The statistical construct known as IQ can reliably estimate general mental ability, or intelligence.
    Well, that is certainly open to serious doubt.

    There are many studies which underscore the limitations of IQ testing as a measure of capability, general mental ability, or intelligence. Even without raising issues of cultural or racial bias (valid though those are) there are plentiful reasons to question such testing.

    If the yardstick employed to measure is open to question, how then can it be used as the basis for his thesis? Would he not have to first disprove the many other dispositive theses undercutting his metric of choice?

    -- Those that show IQ testing is best applied to the young, and even then there is reason to doubt the predictive value of that single number, because;

    -- The brain is plastic, experience prompts new neural pathways to grow, the brain responding to new environmental challenges (moving to another country would be just such a challenge), and;

    -- There is the problem of correlation and causality, if you accept as useful the IQ number for a mother and father and then correlate that to the IQ for offspring what effect are you really measuring? That they were living in poverty, with diminished opportunities for self-improvement, economically, educationally, nutritionally. Improvement in any of which factors would correspond to enhanced ability in offspring. Such improvement, relative to immigrant's environment in their native country being bestowed by entering a much richer nation. Besides which;

    -- The record for past immigrant assimilation in this country points to the benefits available generation-over-generation. Else prior expressed fears of a growing population of dullard Polish, Irish, Italian emigres would be seen in real life - yet they are not.

    Richwine chooses a yardstick of questionable merit.

    He assumes, against all prior evidence that a one-time measure yields an immutable result, unaffected by environmental changes (which for immigrants are on balance positive, even while some are seriously challenging).

    Then he extrapolates from this numeric the expected capability of future generations, growing up in a richer environment, with greater opportunity than the land of their parents or grand-parents or even great grand-parents birth.

    •  OTOH Steven Pinker points out (0+ / 0-)

      As Pinker writes in My Genome (NY Times 2009).

      "To study something scientifically, you first have to measure it, and psychologists have developed tests for many mental traits. And contrary to popular opinion, the tests work pretty well: they give a similar measurement of a person every time they are administered, and they statistically predict life outcomes like school and job performance, psychiatric diagnoses and marital stability. ..

      The most prominent finding of behavioral genetics has been summarized by the psychologist Eric Turkheimer: “The nature-nurture debate is over. . . . All human behavioral traits are heritable.” By this he meant that a substantial fraction of the variation among individuals within a culture can be linked to variation in their genes. Whether you measure intelligence or personality, religiosity or political orientation, television watching or cigarette smoking, the outcome is the same. Identical twins (who share all their genes) are more similar than fraternal twins (who share half their genes that vary among people). Biological siblings (who share half those genes too) are more similar than adopted siblings (who share no more genes than do strangers). And identical twins separated at birth and raised in different adoptive homes (who share their genes but not their environments) are uncannily similar."

  •  "Dr" Richwine will drag down the GOP (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Calamity Jean, Cartoon Peril

    Keep writing your bullshit "Dr" Richwine and you'll drive more and more minority voters away from the racist corrupt GOP -- FOREVER!

    I can't wait to hear Rand Paul defend "Dr" Richwine and his racist "theory."

  •  On the subject of IQ (0+ / 0-)

    I wonder about the IQ of a person who would choose THIS topic for a thesis?   It's sort of like choosing to study UFO's.   It's hard to get people to take you seriously, after that.  

    It sort of raises a question about the IQ of the person who made that decision.   If his IQ is high, then that raises other questions, like, WHAT is the IQ test really measuring?    What is IQ?   Because, whatever it is, it apparently doesn't make people make smarter choices or do their jobs any better.   Whatever it is that stops people from digging this type of hole for themselves (it's apparently not IQ) but maybe whatever that other thing is -- common sense, perhaps?? -- maybe THAT'S what we need to measure.


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