That's Andrew Sullivan, flushing whatever's left of his reputation down the Crapper of Cluelessness. (Or is it the Wastebasket of White Privilege?) Sullivan feels Jason Richwine's parting company with the Heritage Foundation should "immediately send up red flags about intellectual freedom."
I kid you not.
And yes, writing about Sullivan is shooting fish in a barrel, but I couldn't resist.
Reflecting on Richwine's notorious dissertation on race and supposed differences in human intelligence:
We remain the same species, just as a poodle and a beagle are of the same species. But poodles, in general, are smarter than beagles, and beagles have a much better sense of smell. We bred those traits into them, of course, fast-forwarding evolution.Poodles, it seems, rush in where angels fear to tread.
At odds with himself, Sullivan want us to know he believes "IQ is an artificial construct created to predict how well a random person is likely to do in an advanced post-industrial society," and that public policy should never be based in such a measure. Yet he rushes to defend the putative scholarship of Richwine's work.
But the core point about any dissertation is a simple one: does it hold up under scholarly scrutiny? Richard Zeckhauser, the Frank P. Ramsey Professor of Political Economy at Harvard, is on record as saying that “Jason’s empirical work was careful. Moreover, my view is that none of his advisors would have accepted his thesis had he thought that his empirical work was tilted or in error.” One of those advisors was the very serious and very liberal scholar Christopher Jencks.Well, Professor, if there was a serious liberal involved, OK! And we are talking Harvard, after all.
Still, I keep returning to Sullivan's words, smacking as they do of eugenics and stupidity:
We remain the same species, just as a poodle and a beagle are of the same species. But poodles, in general, are smarter than beagles, and beagles have a much better sense of smell. We bred those traits into them, of course, fast-forwarding evolution.Sullivan closes with a warning. "Denying empirical reality is not a good thing in any circumstance."
On that I agree, Andrew, and empirically speaking, you're a pluperfect imbecile and my dachshund Marty is smarter than you. That is all.