Sunday, July 01, 2018

Biracialism in Scripture

Here's a striking example of biracialism in Scripture. Due to intermarriage between Joseph and his Egyptian wife, two tribes of Israel have biracial origins:

45 And Pharaoh called Joseph's name Zaphenath-paneah. And he gave him in marriage Asenath, the daughter of Potiphera priest of On (Gen 41:45).

50 Before the year of famine came, two sons were born to Joseph. Asenath, the daughter of Potiphera priest of On, bore them to him. 51 Joseph called the name of the firstborn Manasseh. “For,” he said, “God has made me forget all my hardship and all my father's house.” 52 The name of the second he called Ephraim, “For God has made me fruitful in the land of my affliction” (Gen 41:50-2).

48 After this, Joseph was told, “Behold, your father is ill.” So he took with him his two sons, Manasseh and Ephraim...8 When Israel saw Joseph's sons, he said, “Who are these?” 9 Joseph said to his father, “They are my sons, whom God has given me here.” And he said, “Bring them to me, please, that I may bless them.” 10 Now the eyes of Israel were dim with age, so that he could not see. So Joseph brought them near him, and he kissed them and embraced them. 11 And Israel said to Joseph, “I never expected to see your face; and behold, God has let me see your offspring also.” 12 Then Joseph removed them from his knees, and he bowed himself with his face to the earth. 13 And Joseph took them both, Ephraim in his right hand toward Israel's left hand, and Manasseh in his left hand toward Israel's right hand, and brought them near him. 14 And Israel stretched out his right hand and laid it on the head of Ephraim, who was the younger, and his left hand on the head of Manasseh, crossing his hands (for Manasseh was the firstborn). 15 And he blessed Joseph and said,

“The God before whom my fathers Abraham and Isaac walked,
    the God who has been my shepherd all my life long to this day,
16 the angel who has redeemed me from all evil, bless the boys;
    and in them let my name be carried on, and the name of my fathers Abraham and Isaac;
    and let them grow into a multitude in the midst of the earth.”
17 When Joseph saw that his father laid his right hand on the head of Ephraim, it displeased him, and he took his father's hand to move it from Ephraim's head to Manasseh's head. 18 And Joseph said to his father, “Not this way, my father; since this one is the firstborn, put your right hand on his head.” 19 But his father refused and said, “I know, my son, I know. He also shall become a people, and he also shall be great. Nevertheless, his younger brother shall be greater than he, and his offspring shall become a multitude of nations.” 20 So he blessed them that day, saying,

“By you Israel will pronounce blessings, saying,
‘God make you as Ephraim and as Manasseh.’”
Thus he put Ephraim before Manasseh (Gen 48:1,8-20).

The allotment of the people of Joseph went from the Jordan by Jericho, east of the waters of Jericho, into the wilderness, going up from Jericho into the hill country to Bethel (Josh 16:1).

98 comments:

  1. There have been genetic studies of Egyptian mummies and the evidence is that they are of a general middle eastern descent. Contemporary Egyptians have more Sub-Saharan ancestry. Even the Copts today are lighter skinned (and they don't marry their cousins). It would be interesting to do 23andme genetic testing of Alawites (have you seen Bashir and his wife?) as well as the Yazidis.


    There is an essay in pre-print that shows that African-Americans (who average 20 percent European genes) and Hispanic-Americans (who are a combination of Spanish and Native American ancestry) have higher IQs the more European ancestry they have.

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    1. I suspect there is a correlation between race/ethnicity and IQ. However, I think that's putting it too vaguely. I think it'd be better to say something like, for example, there are genes which seem to be linked to IQ, and it seems these genes which seem to be linked to IQ aren't evenly distributed across human populations. Something along those lines.

      Of course, correlation isn't causation. Plus, there's weak correlation as well as strong correlation. The correlation between race/ethnicity and IQ is not a 100% correlation. I've seen around ~60%, but that's debatable too. Not to mention, some argue over the limitations of IQ tests in measuring intelligence, which is another huge debate. I think IQ tests are limited, but at the same time they are probably the best measurements we have.

      Interestingly, a clear genius like Richard Feynman notoriously had a lower than expected IQ (120s, if I recall). People point out that IQ tests were different back then, among other issues, but still Feynman had a lower IQ than his sister, who presumably took the same or similar IQ as Feynman took, and who was an intelligent physicist too, but short of a genius like Feynman. That's just one example.

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    2. 1. "Correlation isn't causation." Yes, but it is evidence of causation. It was perfectly reasonable to believe that drinking too much alcohol causes intoxication before the first chemistry experiment was done.

      2. "The correlation between race/ethnicity and IQ is not a 100% correlation. I've seen around ~60%," If by this you mean that being white isn't a guarantee that you are smart then this is true. But the law of averages takes over after a while.

      3. IQ tests are extremely accurate.

      4. How many times did Feynman take an IQ test?

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    3. "Yes, but it is evidence of causation."

      How so? How does the fact that certain races/ethnicities have certain genes necessarily mean "evidence of causation" for IQ or intelligence? Like I said, I don't doubt there's correlation, perhaps even strong correlation, but evidence of causation? How is a race/ethnicity's genes "evidence of causation" in terms of intelligence? You'll have to elaborate.

      "It was perfectly reasonable to believe that drinking too much alcohol causes intoxication before the first chemistry experiment was done."

      This assumes one's race/ethnicity (genetics) "causing" intelligence is analogous to drinking too much alcohol causing intoxication. Where's your connecting argument that the two are alike?

      "If by this you mean that being white isn't a guarantee that you are smart then this is true. But the law of averages takes over after a while."

      Actually, I'm referring to the genomics of intelligence in contrast to other factors or variables.

      "IQ tests are extremely accurate."

      A test can be "extremely accurate" for its limited purpose.

      Also, it depends what you mean by "accuracy". When it comes to tests, typically "accuracy" refers to validity. However, perhaps you are referring to how precise the test is? How reliable it is? How consistent it is? How reproducible it is? How predictive it is? Some of the previous? All of the previous?

      Accuracy is relative. An IQ test is accurate in comparison to what? An IQ test is not more accurate than quantum electrondynamics in terms of predictions of the anomalous magnetic dipole moment of the electron, but it's more accurate than an inebriated partygoer throwing a dart at a dartboard standing six feet away and hoping to hit a bullseye.

      "How many times did Feynman take an IQ test?"

      You should read one of his biographies (e.g. Gleick's). Maybe one of them will have the answer.

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    4. The problem with correlation being assumed to be causation is that whenever you have a set of attributes, you're going to have certain attributes that overlap by chance no matter what. You have to know the rate at which two things will accidentally correlate before you can even begin to tackle the problem of causation.

      David Raup, for example, once took a sports almanac and was able to "prove" such things as teams that had more left-handed batters with names beginning in the first half of the alphabet won more games than those with left-handed batters having names beginning in the second half of the alphabet. But clearly a person's name has no bearing on his baseball skills. The point he made was that we don't necessarily *know* in advance what attributes are relevant and which are accidental. That's why you have to do lots of experiments to knock down as many accidental correlations as you can find.

      But even then, you have to account for the fact that you just don't know which attributes are going to be important in the first place. For instance, as Moti Ben-Ari wrote in "Just a Theory":
      ---
      In 1888 when Heinrich Hertz (1857-1894) was attempting to produce the first radio waves, he did not think that the size of his lab or the color of the paint on its walls were relevant to his experiments; he knew from James Clerk Maxwell's (1831-1879) theory of electromagnetism that radio waves were likely to exist, but he could not know that--while the color of the paint was not significant--the size of the lab was because of echoes from the walls.
      ---

      Correlation is notoriously difficult to convert to causation, and correlation is not evidence for causation at all. It's a necessary step in the chain of causation, as all causation must also have correlation. But to say correlation = causation is about as accurate as saying that being alive causes the ability to run since no running things are dead. Which is true, but overlooks the fact that not all living things run (plants, Michael Moore, etc.).

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    5. Well put!

      Also:

      “not all living things run (plants, Michael Moore, etc.).”

      Lol! :)

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    6. This reminds me of Ayn Rand. She continued to smoke saying that "correlation isn't causation" and using some fanciful examples of correlation like Peter gives. Well she got cancer. There's no fool like an old fool, as Shakespeare said.


      The fact is that we have substantial IQ gaps among various racial/ethinic groups. These gaps persist. And we also know that brains differ in weight and other features by group, which makes the racial hereditarian thesis more likely. There are also statistical issues such as Spearman's hypothesis and regression to the mean.


      And the "correlation isn't causation" claim is every bit an issue for the racial egalitarian. For example, the claim is that poverty, racism, slavery, Jim Crow, bad schools, bad parents, bad nutrition, etc. are responsible for the 15 point IQ gap vis a vis Whites? The problem is even worse - we know some of these things don't cause low IQ. No group has been persecuted more than the Jews but that doesn't seem to have affected their IQ.

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    7. Steve Jackson

      "This reminds me of Ayn Rand. She continued to smoke saying that "correlation isn't causation" and using some fanciful examples of correlation like Peter gives. Well she got cancer. There's no fool like an old fool, as Shakespeare said."

      Once again, this is an argument from analogy minus the argument. What makes you think the genomics of intelligence and race/ethnicity is analogous to smoking and lung cancer (or to your earlier example of consuming alcohol and becoming inebriated)?

      "The fact is that we have substantial IQ gaps among various racial/ethinic groups. These gaps persist. And we also know that brains differ in weight and other features by group, which makes the racial hereditarian thesis more likely. There are also statistical issues such as Spearman's hypothesis and regression to the mean."

      I think the differences in brain "weight" are overstated to say the least.

      I think there's some truth to Spearman if you're likewise referring to the g factor in the context of Stanford-Binet IQ tests (e.g. after Murray, Jensen and Rushton).

      Nevertheless, at best, these constitute strong correlation, not causation, which is what you originally claimed.

      "And the "correlation isn't causation" claim is every bit an issue for the racial egalitarian. For example, the claim is that poverty, racism, slavery, Jim Crow, bad schools, bad parents, bad nutrition, etc. are responsible for the 15 point IQ gap vis a vis Whites? The problem is even worse - we know some of these things don't cause low IQ. No group has been persecuted more than the Jews but that doesn't seem to have affected their IQ."

      I'm not a racial egalitarian in the sense you mean here.

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    8. "And we also know that brains differ in weight"

      I'm unclear if you mean brain mass, brain volume, cranial capacity, etc. Each of these could result in a different brain "weight".

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    9. Of course opportunity has an effect, that is apparent to anyone, but it is more of a question of to what extent. The answer of which is, not as much as you would think. Genetics have a much larger effect. For example this 2003 study (http://sci-hub.tw/10.1017/S0021932004007023) in Hawaii found counter to the famous 2003 Turkheimer study of economic status on IQ that " From Table 2 it is
      apparent that parental education and occupational status, for the most part, did not
      have a significant influence on offspring intelligence, once parental intelligence was
      controlled for. This result was reported previously in Johnson & Nagoshi (1985). Of
      note here is that none of the interactions of mid-parent intelligenceparental
      education or occupational status was significant, indicating that familial transmission of intelligence was not moderated by parental socioeconomic status."(Page 778)
      There is more data. Here is a youtube video on this whole question, should you actually be willing to know the verboten truth. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WPV6Hz9iwQo&t=547s

      As for Epistles arguments, you can learn more here: http://thealternativehypothesis.org/index.php/race-and-iq/ it has collated pages and pages of information that you can investigate yourself if you are interested.

      I hope this answers some questions that you have.
      As for the question about asians and white etc marrying. I do not, at the moment have a good scientific argument against it rather than to be consistent with my beliefs about Black and White marriage I must also oppose it (beyond the issues raised in the mixed race children problem.) Furthermore it would be bringing the Asians down to mix with white people in that regard, if we are again, talking only about IQ and not other characteristics of race.

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    10. Martin Marprelate

      "As for Epistles arguments, you can learn more here: http://thealternativehypothesis.org/index.php/race-and-iq/ it has collated pages and pages of information that you can investigate yourself if you are interested."

      Just skimming through some of these. At first glance, they're of highly variable quality. For example, the page on the validity of IQ tests states at one point: "We know that IQ tests measure intelligence because IQ tests correlate with peer and self rated intelligence". An obvious problem with this is that self-reported surveys on intelligence are not exactly very reliable unless you believe people are their own best assessors when it comes to their own intelligence and you believe self-reported surveys constitute good evidence.

      And again, at best, it looks like these demonstrate correlation, not causation. For example, the article on the heritability of IQ explicitly states: "50-70% of IQ variance in the population is explained by genes" and "Of course, this does not mean that group differences are caused by genes. They could also be caused by unshared environmental factors, such as racism or sexism."

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    11. "As for the question about asians and white etc marrying. I do not, at the moment have a good scientific argument against it rather than to be consistent with my beliefs about Black and White marriage I must also oppose it (beyond the issues raised in the mixed race children problem.)"

      I don't know what problems you are alluding to in "mixed race children"?

      "Furthermore it would be bringing the Asians down to mix with white people in that regard, if we are again, talking only about IQ and not other characteristics of race."

      Ironically, even the website you mentioned to me notes it's not so simple and clear-cut as marriage with a higher IQ race/ethnicity and a lower IQ race/ethnicity will lead to children with an IQ averaged between both races/ethnicities. At best, that's only true if given a large enough population and a long enough period of time. What's true of a population is not necessarily true of couples within a population and vice versa. (Of course, this likewise grants several assumptions which I don't necessarily agree with.)

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    12. ---
      This reminds me of Ayn Rand.
      ---

      This reminds me of the sound my cat makes in the middle of the night when he pukes up nonsense in the middle of the floor for my bare foot to find, so I'll treat it the same way.

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    13. i) You're obsessed with IQ tests. But what do IQ tests actually test? Do they test native intelligence? To my knowledge, educated test-takers typically perform better on IQ tests than uneducated test-takers. But that means they're not testing native intelligence.

      ii) People generally marry members of the same social class. Likewise, if they have the option, men usually marry a woman because she's pretty or she has a winsome personality. IQ is not a criterion. I think that's because men are normally competitive with other men but not with women.

      Given a choice, a normal guy will marry Ava Gardner rather than Elizabeth Anscombe. You keep making this an issue about interracial marriage and IQ, but most folks marry members of the same race//ethnicity, yet men don't generally take IQ into consideration when choosing a mate.

      iii) I gave you an example in which opportunity, or the lack thereof, had a tremendous demonstrable effect. Look an how open Asian societies have become competitive with, or overtaken, Caucasian societies in classic brainiac fields like math, science, and chess.

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    14. Steve Jackson,

      My point about Joseph is that he married outside his people-group.

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    15. >>>i) You're obsessed with IQ tests. But what do IQ tests actually test? Do they test native intelligence? To my knowledge, educated test-takers typically perform better on IQ tests than uneducated test-takers. But that means they're not testing native intelligence.

      The chief salesman in my friend's shop sells 20-25% of his merchandise. He is uneducated, and would fail most of the math test (which are part of IQ tests). But he can sell, and my friend believes when he has a few such uneducated, but great-at-sales staff, he would easily generate 6 figures on a monthly basis. 7-figures, if he changes his business dynamics (going international sales along with regional)

      So.... what is this fixation on IQ, again?

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    16. And anyone who thinks money/financial success is not one of the determinant in mate selection (in general) is to be perpetually ignored for living on a planet divorced from reality!

      Most arranged marriages (upto 90 % in conservative Asian countries like India, and 60-70 percent in the world) are based on the financial capabilities of the man in question!!!

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  2. For the record, I do not think that interracial marriage is unbiblical. My point is simply that people who engage in such marriages will have offspring that fall between the averages. A white couple where both the parents have IQs of 100 will have children with IQs of 100. A white mother (average IQ 100) and black father (average IQ 85) will have children in the middle (mid to low 90s).

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    1. Its close to 80% heritability of IQ. Average Saharan Africans are around 70iq vs average European being around 100 or higher depending on the country. The heritable traits effect also becomes more apparent as the person gets older. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2889158/
      http://humanvarieties.org/2013/07/05/hollow-flynn-effect-in-two-developing-countries-and-a-further-test-of-the-debatable-black-white-genetic-differences/
      It may not be biblically mandated but it might be something that is still not a good idea.As this study shows mixed race children have a harder time in life than one those of monoracial background.
      https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1448064/

      No hatred towards my brothers and sisters of all races but reality is reality and we must contend with it.

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    2. I was just waiting to see how long a neo-kinist or their ilk would take to comment.

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    3. I am neither Neo, nor original. I merely came to this conclusion based on facts and science. Can you give a positive account as to why we should promote marriage outside our respective races? I can give many accounts as to why it is a negative thing for both the spouses and the children, it is hard to find any positives.

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    4. Martin Marprelate

      "Can you give a positive account as to why we should promote marriage outside our respective races?"

      I haven't read the studies you've cited in detail, but I've skimmed them. At least at first glance, I don't think the studies prove what you expect them to prove. That's due to selection bias, limitations in generalizability, some confounders, and so on. But again I'd have to look into each study in detail, which would take a lot of time.

      Nevertheless suppose what you say about race/ethnicity and intelligence is true. According to many if not most of the "best" studies on race/ethnicity and intelligence, Ashkenazi Jews and East Asians are the races/ethnicities with the highest IQs. In that case, why shouldn't a person of a different race/ethnicity marry an Ashkenazi Jew or East Asian? If what you say is true, then wouldn't that mean it'd likely raise their children's IQs? Again, that's not what I'd argue, but I'm responding to you on your own grounds: it's one "positive" way to "promote marriage outside our respective races".

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    5. Martin,

      1. Is your objection that interracial marriage drags IQ down? Assuming, for argument's sake, that some races have higher IQs than others, do you mean that a child who's the product of a higher IQ parent and a lower IQ parent will have a lower IQ than the child of two higher IQ parents?

      It may be that kids of two higher IQ parents tend to have higher IQ, although genius kids don't automatically have genius parents, so it's not a question of simple addition.

      2. The same logic is reversible. If interracial marriage lowers the IQ of the kids, compared to high IQ parents, then interracial marriage raises the IQ of kids, compared to low IQ parents:

      i) Two low IQ parents=low IQ kids

      ii) Two high IQ parents=high IQ kids

      iii) Low IQ parent + high IQ parent = kids smarter than (i) but dumber than (ii).

      ii) The (alleged) IQ disparity occurs within races as well as between races. Take a smart white guy who marries the proverbial "dumb blond" because she's pretty.

      Typically, white men (as well as men generally) don't marry a woman based on IQ. There's no effort to match the IQ of the husband/boyfriend with the IQ of the wife/girlfriend.

      So your argument would involve a radical change in dating/mating strategies. Is that your intention?

      iii) Whether or not "mixed race children have a harder time in life than one those of monoracial background" depends in part on where they live. Is that true on the West Coast?

      iv) Even if some "mixed race children have a harder time in life than one those of monoracial background," the alternative is for those kids not to exist in the first place. It's not harming them or wronging them to let them exist, even if life is more of a challenge.

      v) Isn't your argument applicable to socioeconomic status? Kids of affluent parents have it easier compared to kids of poor parents. Does that mean poor folks shouldn't have any kids?

      vi) What about interracial marriage between (allegedly) high IQ races like Jews, whites, and Asians?

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    6. Steve,

      The IQ disparities exist among ethnic groups is a fact. Even leftists like Turkheimer and Nisbett admit it. We can debate the cause.

      https://www.vox.com/the-big-idea/2017/5/18/15655638/charles-murray-race-iq-sam-harris-science-free-speech

      I think white men and women do tend to date/marry people of similar IQ. There have been studies that confirm this, but can't think of them off the top of my head.

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    7. Steve Jackson

      "The IQ disparities exist among ethnic groups is a fact. Even leftists like Turkheimer and Nisbett admit it. We can debate the cause."

      I don't think that "IQ disparities exit among ethnic groups" was ever in dispute. What was in dispute is that you believe one's genetics (race/ethnicity) are the predominant determinant in IQ rather than other factors. In fact, you went even further: you didn't claim correlation, which I could see, but you claimed causation.

      "There have been studies that confirm this, but can't think of them off the top of my head."

      There have been "studies" that confirm just about every idea under the sun. You can find a "study" in some academic journal or other for just about any position. Just look at the "scientific" journals which support homeopathy, for instance. What matters isn't that there are studies which support this or that position, but how sound and valid a study is, whether a study is biased, etc.

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    8. Not to mention a case report (for example) is significantly different than a meta analysis or systematic review.

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    9. Steve Jackson,

      i) I don't know how you're drawing the lines. Are you defining Jews as white or non-white? What about Latinos?

      ii) Seems less about race than smart people who marry other smart people are more likely to have smart kids. If a high IQ white marries a high IQ Asian, they're apt to have smart kids.

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    10. If we were constructing a racial bell curve as late as, say, the mid-20, it might seem like whites are the smartest race. Have most of the geniuses at math, science, chess. But after some Asian countries began to open up and open out to the west, with cultural cross-pollination, a racial bell curve c. 2018 would put whites below Asians. To some extent the disparities are due to lack of opportunities.

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    12. A basic problem with correlating IQ with parentage or genetics is that children of the same parents can vary widely in IQ. Parents with multiple kids may have a brilliant child or genius child. That doesn't mean their other kids are brilliant or genius material. So I'm unpersuaded by the simplistic correlation between smart parents having smart kids based on genetic intelligence. Although intelligence seems to be hereditary to some degree, there's not a one-to-one correspondence.

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    13. Steve Jackson

      >>>My point is simply that people who engage in such marriages will have offspring that fall between the averages. A white couple where both the parents have IQs of 100 will have children with IQs of 100. A white mother (average IQ 100) and black father (average IQ 85) will have children in the middle (mid to low 90s).

      Can you share a study validated by independent and diverse research social scientists who show that race is the predominant factor in IQ formation? If you wish to make a scientific case you cannot just throw one research and claim validity.

      The folks at CERN even came up with a result that showed that neutrinos exceeded the speed of light - to give an example of how science deals with stray research results - and that result was termed invalid because other facilities did not corroborate it. THIS IS how science works. Not a stray result here or there, but conclusivity through independent corroboration. (It may come to be that we do find particles, even a form of neutrinos, that violate Einstein's theory, but until it is demonstrated, we ignore the possibility pending the said result).


      >>>I think white men and women do tend to date/marry people of similar IQ.

      That's strange. My training is in math and physics, so I haven't studied behavioral science, but I read/watched/heard that research suggests that any female (irrespective of race) tends to date the man which she believes can raise/give her the best, physically fit children. This is drawn straight from the current understanding of the theory of evolution. Women judge this from the cues of body language, pheromones, body ratios and a host of other things. If my memory serves me well, Discovery channel had a whole show on this, with multiple experts sharing their information.

      Anyway, as someone who has training in mathematics (esp. statistics), you first need to establish a null result to ensure your data (and your result) is not skewed. The US of A has a higher White population - therefore the statistical odds of a white male and a white female dating and marrying are statistically higher. One may assume that Whites have a better IQ, and then suppose that white women tend to marry white men, and therefore conclude that white women marry men with higher IQ (which by definition is what a white man is believed to have --- and here is the pitfall because such a reasoning is circular). But statistically, IQ is just another variable among a host of variables. Transport these white woman to India or Africa, and in due course you will see white woman marrying brown and blacks predominantly.

      My point is, there are several things the studies you suggest must establish first, besides being independently corroborated by other studies:

      1. It should establish what the null result is
      2. It should conclusively show the causation link - how IQ is a determinant in dating/marrying. And how independent it is of other factors?
      3. It should demonstrate that IQ is only, or predominantly, a matter of genetics. One either has it, or doesn't.
      4. It should show that IQ is transmitted primarily and majorly through genetics.
      5. It must show that racial/ethnic IQ levels are essentially different if all other variables are the same. The sample size would be the key.
      6. The studies must be independent of geographies or cultural mores.
      7. And many other questions that a behavioral scientist will be better able to form.

      Epistle of Dude asked a few interesting questions - I wonder what your answers to them would be.

      JM

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    15. >>>A basic problem with correlating IQ with parentage or genetics is that children of the same parents can vary widely in IQ.

      Very true. But more importantly, IQ is a debated concept. It is not necessarily a determinant of success, and "what is success", is itself debated.

      Most businessmen I know dont have the genius of Einstein, but have more money than Einstein could have earned in several dozen of lifetimes. Relevance? Well, if we are to go with science, and if the biological goal of sex/mating/marriage is to produce better offspring, or a safer offspring, IQ in this sense is irrelevant. Money gets you there, if you are a normal fertile male. You can hire the best educators, the best facilities the best of everything for your offspring the world can offer.

      There are further problems I have with this concept of "IQ". My brother is not blessed with the reasoning ability that I have. I am very structured in my thinking, he is not. I am critical of things, he is not. But there is stuff that he can do but I cannot (he has more interest in machines, I do not. He is more creative than I, artistically, and a few other things). My sister has completely different gifts too. My mom is another example, and so if my dad.

      An IQ test will likely put us all in different categories (and that would disprove the primary thesis of this thread), but that does not affect the way we lead our lives (and this is the point of contention of the thread poster). So why should anyone care about this IQ?

      One does not need a high IQ to run a successful business (and take care of families, both your own and others you employ) - and as an aspiring businessman, that personally reduces IQ to a useless concept in terms of pragmatic living. I'd rather hire 10 Einsteins than rack my brains to be an Einstein myself, or finding a mate who "MAY" give me a better IQed offspring, who would just be a random gamble (unless we see those studies that prove causation of the said effect).

      So Steve Jackson, Martin --------- tell me again, why IQ (a debated, and a possibly non-existent or at least an irrelevant concept) is important determinant of marriage?

      JM

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    16. Steve,

      1. I'd say Ashkenazi Jews are White. They have a fair amount of European admixture. Hispanics/Latinos are a difficult case. They tend to be Spanish (or other European) and native American. And no surprise, they have an IQ in between the two groups. However, sometimes Hispanic is defines as being from a Latin American country. So if your were born in Spain you aren't Hispanic, but the pope is Hispanic although his parents were born in Italy. I guess if you are looking for a case of a "socially constructed race" then Hispanic is it.

      2. "seems less about race than smart people who marry other smart people are more likely to have smart kids. If a high IQ white marries a high IQ Asian, they're apt to have smart kids."


      But consider regression to the mean. If two parents who are 5 feet tall have children they will tend to have children taller than 5 feet. If parents 6 feet tall have children they will tend to be shorter. The White IQ is 100, the Black IQ is 85. 2 White parents with an IQ of 100 will have children with an average IQ of 100. 2 Black parents with an IQ of 100 will have children who average IQ is 92.5. The same with siblings. Also, it works the other way. Blacks with IQs of 80 will have children with higher IQs. This is why children from poor white families have higher IQs than children from wealthy black families. There is a name for this - the "Shaker Heights phenomenon." Shaker Heights is a wealthy black suburb of Cleveland. Parents go there to escape Cleveland's schools. Well the schools aren't as bad as Cleveland's but they aren't Boise's either.


      3. "If we were constructing a racial bell curve as late as, say, the mid-20, it might seem like whites are the smartest race. Have most of the geniuses at math, science, chess. But after some Asian countries began to open up and open out to the west, with cultural cross-pollination, a racial bell curve c. 2018 would put whites below Asians. To some extent the disparities are due to lack of opportunities. "

      To some extent yes, but I certainly wouldn't argue that it is entirely genetic. When Japan got its act together it defeated Russia in a naval war. But does anyone think this will happen with, say, Nigerians? One issue with East Asians is that they do differently than whites on different parts of IQ tests and also it seems that there is less variation among the mean. So you will get lots of Asian engineers but probably few Asian Einsteins.

      4. "Although intelligence seems to be hereditary to some degree, there's not a one-to-one correspondence. " The consensus puts the heritability of intelligence at 50 to 80%, with the consensus within the consensus at 70 to 80%. Even Turkheimer puts it at 40%

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    17. I guess their implicit argument is that places like Haiti and sub-Saharan Africa are dysfunctional because blacks are too stupid. However, that's complicated:

      It takes survival skills to live in Africa. That's a very inhospitable part of the world. Many dangerous animals and tropical diseases. Famine.

      Europe was war-torn for centuries. Both civil wars and wars between European states. Is that due to low IQ?

      The standard of living was rotten for most Europeans for centuries. Is that due to low IQ?

      The Muslim world is dysfunctional. Is that due to low IQ?

      India is a basket case. Is that due to low IQ?

      What about traditional warfare between China and Japan? Is that due to low IQ?

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    18. "One issue with East Asians is that they do differently than whites on different parts of IQ tests and also it seems that there is less variation among the mean. So you will get lots of Asian engineers but probably few Asian Einsteins."

      Assuming that's correct, is that due to racial differences in native intelligence or differences in educational philosophy, where traditional Asian pedagogy is more into conformity, rote learning, rather than fostering/rewarding intellectual mavericks?

      Delete
    19. 1. "I guess their implicit argument is that places like Haiti and sub-Saharan Africa are dysfunctional because blacks are too stupid."

      Well, consider this: Haiti and the Dominican Republic both share the same Island. Haiti resembles a sub-Saharan African Country, the DR a mix-race Hispanic country. Poland has earned more Nobel prizes in science than all of Africa and Latin America combined.

      2. Yes, Europeans do stupid things, but no one is equating IQ with moral reasoning. And the Hutus and Tutsis killed a million people with just bayonets. It's the high IQ of Europeans that made WW2 so bad.

      3. The differences within Asian IQ scores (special vs. verbal, say) are found in Asian-Americans. So it is unlikely to be due to pedagogy or the difficulty in learning Asian alphabets.

      4. My argument that group differences in intelligence have a substantial genetic component isn't just based on observing human history. It is also the psychometric arguments (the heritability of intelligence, Spearman's hypothesis, regression to the mean) and biological evidence (differences in brain size, the new study that the higher European ancestry an African-American or Hispanic has the higher the IQ, etc.)

      5. But I'm curious - what is your explanation for all the differences in racial/ethnic groups. No one would say Poland has been a center of European science like France, England and Germany, yet as I pointed out it has produced more Nobel prizes in science than all of Africa and Latin America combined.

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    20. Or let me give you another example. Ashkenazi Jews earn 20 percent of the Nobel Prizes in science. Yet in Israel, Ashkenazi Jews and non A-Jews go to the same schools. No none A-Jew in Israel has won a Nobel prize in science.

      At some point racial hereditarianism is the inexcapable conlusion. And if it were false it would be the easiest thing to refute: just come up with the intellectual achievements of Sub-Saharan Africans or Australian Aborigines.

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    21. You keep treating IQ is a mean between two parents. If the dad has an IQ of 110 while the mom has an IQ of 90, the kid will have an IQ of 100. But in my observation, many gifted kids are smarter than either parent. Likewise, in a family with 6 kids, one or two siblings may be highly gifted while the others are average a little above average. So you can't account for brilliance or genius by genetics or nurture, either separately or in combination. There's another variable.

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    22. It's my impression that Pakistan is more dysfunctional than India. But that's not fundamentally race-based.

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    23. It's like saying Newton's IQ was the mean between his father and his mother. He was smarter than his mother but dumber than his father (or vice versa). But you just don't have that consistent correlation.

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    24. Well we can find exceptions, but the pattern is monozygotic twins resemble each other in IQ more than dizygotic twins, who resemble more than siblings. In fact, people who are not related but are genetically similar tend to have similar IQs.

      I had a friend who worked for a large law firm in the trusts and estates department. She told me that parents kept coming to change their wills, leaving out adopted children. But like your observation that's just an observation.

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    25. Compare N. Korea to S. Korea.

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    26. If IQ is 50 to 80 percent heritable, which almost no one doubts, then it is inevitable than on average children will have IQs somewhere in between the parents.

      The problem with Pakistan is the dominance of Islam and, related to this, that 80 percent of births are from first-cousin marriages.

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    27. "Compare N. Korea to S. Korea." I bet their IQs are somewhat similar.

      All that your arguments show is that all races/ethnic groups have a low floor. That doesn't mean they have an equally high ceiling.

      Delete
    28. Another example is Spain. While it built a great empire it never produced large numbers of important thinkers. Even when it was hyper-Catholic it never produced theologians in the rank of France and Germany (there are a couple exceptions but not many). And low and behold, Latin America hasn't produced many important thinkers - just some leftist Mexicans like Cortazar for the most part.

      I just don't know why you think these patterns keep reoccurring.

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    29. Steve Jackson

      "I certainly wouldn't argue that it is entirely genetic" and "The consensus puts the heritability of intelligence at 50 to 80%, with the consensus within the consensus at 70 to 80%. Even Turkheimer puts it at 40%."

      Ironically, we've come full circle. This is essentially what I said in my very first comment to you: "The correlation between race/ethnicity and IQ is not a 100% correlation. I've seen around ~60%, but that's debatable too."

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    30. A couple of brief thoughts:

      1. A lot of what Steve Jackson says is interesting from a sociological and historical perspective. However, if one is going to argue for a genetic basis for intelligence, then there needs to be hard direct scientific (genetic) evidence for it. Not merely drawing analogies between IQ and height, alcohol consumption, smoking and cancer, etc. Not merely telling stories about the achievements or lack thereof of this or that racial/ethnic group. Rather, what are the specific genes involved, what are the genetic hereditary mechanisms, and so on?

      Among the best scientific evidence I'm aware of is from Steve Hsu, but even Hsu doesn't seem to argue for such direct causation as Steve Jackson does. At best, Hsu argues for strong correlation. However, if correlation is enough, then Steve Jackson needs to significantly scale back his argument about race and IQ.

      2. I think in East Asian cultures it's generally considered poor form for a junior to correct a senior. Like a son correcting his father. Like a student correcting his teacher.

      In fact, it's often considered better to lose than to win or to be thought wrong than right (even if you could win or even if you are right) if it means saving someone else (especially someone more senior to you) from embarrassment.

      Also, it's considered inappropriate if someone of a lower social status (e.g. employee) leaves work earlier than someone of a higher social status (e.g. the boss). If the boss doesn't leave until 9pm, then no one leaves until at least 9:15pm!

      I think these sorts of things might (at least arguably) make it harder for originality, creativity, or genius to thrive like in the West.

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    31. James McCloud

      "Epistle of Dude asked a few interesting questions - I wonder what your answers to them would be."

      You asked some good questions that I'd like to hear Steve Jackson respond to as well!

      Delete
    32. The idea that you have to find the genes is unreasonable. In no area of science is this required. You can't realistically conclude that Border Collies are smarter than Pugs unless you find the genes? Koko didn't have a genetic advantage over ants in the intelligence department?

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    33. I'm not sure what questions I haven't answered.

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    34. Steve Jackson

      "The idea that you have to find the genes is unreasonable. In no area of science is this required. You can't realistically conclude that Border Collies are smarter than Pugs unless you find the genes? Koko didn't have a genetic advantage over ants in the intelligence department?"

      If you're arguing that there's a genetic basis for intelligence among races, then, no, it's not unreasonable to expect a genetic basis for intelligence among races be shown!

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    35. I'm saying you don't have to identify the specific genes to know that there is a genetic basis. That human beings are smarter than gorillas is a fact and that there is a biological basis for this is a fact. We knew this with complete certainty long before Mendel or Crick and Watson came on the scene.

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    36. Steve Jackson

      "I'm saying you don't have to identify the specific genes to know that there is a genetic basis. That human beings are smarter than gorillas is a fact and that there is a biological basis for this is a fact. We knew this with complete certainty long before Mendel or Crick and Watson came on the scene."

      1. For one thing, it's not exactly surprising news to say "human beings are smarter than [insert literally any other animal or organism on our planet here]."

      2. Also, sure, it's easy enough to tell someone like Einstein is smarter than the average person. But that's coarsely grained. Isn't the point that we're attempting to have an increasingly greater precision in measuring intelligence and so forth?

      3. The specific argument is that there's a genetic basis in intelligence, is it not? If not, if the argument is simply that "It seems obvious to me that on average whites are smarter than blacks", then why don't you go ahead and drop the argument that there's a genetic basis in intelligence? Instead, why don't you just make it an argument about intelligence being ascertained through sociological effects and the like?

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    37. I've explained why I think it is genetic: brain size, regression to the mean, Spearman's hypothesis, twin studies, adoption studies, Kiergegard's pre-publication paper on IQ and European ancestry, Piffer's 2015 paper on GWAS hits, the high heritability of intelligence within groups makes it more like that between group differences are down to genes, etc.

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    38. Steve Jackson

      "I've explained why I think it is genetic: brain size, regression to the mean, Spearman's hypothesis, twin studies, adoption studies, Kiergegard's pre-publication paper on IQ and European ancestry, Piffer's 2015 paper on GWAS hits, the high heritability of intelligence within groups makes it more like that between group differences are down to genes, etc."

      I've responded to several of these above.

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    39. There is also the fact that we don't know how to raise IQ large enough to explain the gaps. The Black/White IQ gap is 15 points. While the blacks in the Minnesota Transracial Adoption study did have somewhat higher IQS than Blacks on average, the gap between the Black and White adoptees stayed roughly the same, if I recall correctly. Head Start produces an initial gain in Black IQ, but it completely evaporates by age 18 (which is consistent with a genetic explanation).

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    40. What is your explanation for the fact that Poland has produced more Nobel prize winners in science than all of Africa and Latin America combined?

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    41. Steve Jackson

      1. To be upfront, I'm not averse to a genetic explanation. In fact, I think there likely is some heritable genetic basis. But I don't see how it's necessarily the sole or predominant explanation. Let alone how there's a causal relationship between genetics and intelligence as you've been saying. That strikes me as too simplistic for such a complex trait.

      2. At this point, it seems to me you're mainly dealing with population wide effects, attempting to backwards or reverse engineer causes from effects. I don't necessarily disagree with this approach, per se, but I think it has its limitations. It'd be better to find more direct and positive evidence.

      3. I have seen some people argue that blacks have lower IQs than whites when both have the same formal educational background. However, given liberal policies like affirmative action (official and unofficial) wreaking havoc for generations, it wouldn't be surprising to me if blacks with the same formal educational background as whites truly are less intelligent. Liberal policies like affirmative action have likely significantly biased the data.

      4. Suppose intelligence is fundamentally and predominantly genetically based. Suppose intelligence is heritable. If so, then it might prove too much. If so, then why isn't it possible for any race to evolve and become more intelligent, unless one is arguing there are inherent limitations to microevolutionary adaptations in intelligence among races?

      5. Also, if the previous is true, I think this might raise another question: which came first - the genes or the impetus that led to the genetic variations in intelligence? Are Jews and Asians innately more intelligent than other races or was their focus on education across hundreds if not thousands of years a kind of constant pressure (a kind of artificial selection I guess) which resulted in them developing genes linked to cognitive ability or focus or whatever it takes to do well on certain kinds of exams? That's not clear to me.

      6. Again, I think there is some degree of genetic heritability to intelligence, but I think it's far from the whole picture. At the same time, I think the current whole picture isn't even all that clear. There's still so much we don't understand about genetics and heritability, especially when it comes to complex traits like intelligence. Molecular and cell biology including genetics (and population genetics, which is what a lot of this is about) still seems to be in its infancy or at least young adulthood as a field of study. This should make people cautious about drawing sweeping conclusions like about race and intelligence. There's nothing wrong with saying "I don't know".

      7. From a Christian perspective, or at least a theistic and substance dualist perspective, I think intelligence or cognitive ability is probably less physically based and more soul/spirit/mind based, I guess we could say. Since intelligence predominantly involves the mind and the mind isn't physically heritable. Maybe it's more like how kids are similar to parents in terms of personality (broadly speaking). More like traducianism in heritability. Something along those lines, but I still have a lot of unanswered questions myself.

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    42. I think geneticist Neil Risch makes mostly fair-minded remarks about race, genetics, and intelligence:

      It is very challenging to assign causes to group differences. As far as genetics goes, if you have identified a particular gene which clearly influences a trait, and the frequency of that gene differs between populations, that would be pretty good evidence. But traits like "intelligence" or other behaviors (at least in the normal range), to the extent they are genetic, are "polygenic." That means no single genes have large effects -- there are many genes involved, each with a very small effect. Such gene effects are difficult if not impossible to find. The problem in assessing group differences is the confounding between genetic and social/cultural factors. If you had individuals who are genetically one thing but socially another, you might be able to tease it apart, but that is generally not the case.

      In our paper, we tried to show that a trait can appear to have high "genetic heritability" in any particular population, but the explanation for a group difference for that trait could be either entirely genetic or entirely environmental or some combination in between.

      So, in my view, at this point, any comment about the etiology of group differences, for "intelligence" or anything else, in the absence of specific identified genes (or environmental factors, for that matter), is speculation.

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    43. I don't know much about genetics, but here is geneticist David Reich in his book Who We Are (2018):
      ________________

      Is performance on an intelligence test or the number of years of school a person attends shaped by the way a person is brought up? Of course. But does it measure something having to do with some aspect of behavior or cognition? Almost certainly. And since all traits influenced by genetics are expected to differ across populations (because the frequencies of genetic variations are rarely exactly the same across populations), the genetic influences on behavior and cognition will differ across populations, too.
      _________

      If you can find a geneticist who says that the current understanding of genetics makes it impossible that population groups have different innate cognitive and behavioral traits then I'll get interested.

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    44. "What is your explanation for the fact that Poland has produced more Nobel prize winners in science than all of Africa and Latin America combined?"

      I'm sure that the fact that a European prize for advancement in the areas that Europeans are interested in will predominately feature those who are engaged in European science has absolutely no bearing on why certain countries are represented higher than others. Instead, it can ONLY BE be because people in other countries are dumber. There is literally no other explanation possible. I mean, the fact that the new York Yankees have won more World Series than the Colorado Rockies can ONLY be explained by the fact people who play in New York are more athletic than everywhere else. There is literally no other possible explanation, so stop disagreeing.

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    45. The Nobel prize isn't a European prize. You can win it if you have never set foot in Europe. Only Europeans are interested in science? Most people want to advance their lives with the latest scientific and technological devices.

      Poland has 40 million people. Latin America and Africa have around 1.8 billion. That's a 45 to 1 disparity. And the Ashkenazi Jewish difference is far more dramatic.

      One can theoretically come up with environmental explanations for this or that group difference, but there are so many that it is very hard to account for all the differences. And as I pointed out, there isn't any counter evidence I'm aware of. If Australian Aborigines are as bright as Ashkenazi Jews then where are their scientific achievements?

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    46. What accounts for the fact that scientific genius clusters around the first three decades of 20C physics? What accounts for the clustering of genius in Classical Greece? Why that particular time and place?

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    47. Yes, the IQ of N. and S. Koreans may well be comparable. But the intellectual achievements of the two countries are not. Which proves my point.

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    48. "If IQ is 50 to 80 percent heritable, which almost no one doubts, then it is inevitable than on average children will have IQs somewhere in between the parents."

      Really? If we ran through a list of the geniuses in cliche brainiac disciplines like math, chess, and physics, you're having to say that in each case, one of their parents was even more brilliant than their genius child.

      But in my observation, there are kids who are smarter than either parent. Surely that's not hard to document. A genius child of less than genius parents.

      Likewise, as I already noted, siblings vary in their level of intelligence, as well as the kind of intelligence.

      So I find your myopic explanation reductionistic and unable to address counterevidence.

      Finally, I agree with Dude that the mind is ontologically independent of the brain. There are multiple lines of evidence. I don't think the brain is the source of intelligence.

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    49. "What accounts for the fact that scientific genius clusters around the first three decades of 20C physics? What accounts for the clustering of genius in Classical Greece? Why that particular time and place? "

      As I said, it's partly genetic and partly cultural.

      "Really? If we ran through a list of the geniuses in cliche brainiac disciplines like math, chess, and physics, you're having to say that in each case, one of their parents was even more brilliant than their genius child. "

      I'm taller than my parents. There are always exceptions.

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    50. Is it exceptional that a genius child is smarter than his parents, or is that typical? Is it exceptional that some siblings are smarter than other siblings, or is that commonplace?

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    51. Explain how the clustering of genius in Classical Greece is partly genetic? Explain how the fact that scientific genius clusters around the first three decades of 20C physics is partly genetic?

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    52. "The Nobel prize isn't a European prize."

      Are you being intentionally obtuse? The Nobel Prize is chosen by Swedish and Norwegian institutions. They make the final determination of who gets what prize so they're going to pick things that matter to them. Sure, you don't have to be in Europe to win--you just have to be doing stuff Europeans care about. You know, LIKE I SAID in the post you ignored.

      But by all means, keep on plugging away beating that drum of yours. You're doing a great job illustrating the types of thinking people on the low end of the IQ spectrum are capable of.

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    53. "Poland has 40 million people. Latin America and Africa have around 1.8 billion. That's a 45 to 1 disparity. And the Ashkenazi Jewish difference is far more dramatic."

      1. Modern Poland has about 40 million people. Modern Latin America and modern Africa have about 1.8 billion people. It's highly simplistic and in fact statistically unfair to use modern populations as the denominator in your calculation. Instead, you'd have to look at each of these populations at the time when a particular Nobel Prize was awarded, which would vary in history. What was the population of Poland, Latin America, and Africa in the early 1900s when the first Nobels were awarded? What was their population each subsequent year when the Nobels were awarded? Perhaps doing this would still yield the conclusions you desire, but my basic point is not about your conclusions, but that you have to compare apples with apples, not apples with oranges, and using modern populations as a yardstick isn't doing that.

      2. The modern population of East Asia is about 1.7 billion. Here is a list of Asians who have won a Nobel prize. I'd exclude the Nobel Peace prize because that's highly politicized.

      3. Actually, the scientific Nobels are highly politicized too, and for many if not most of these years there are other candidates who arguably should've received the Nobel instead.

      4. Anyway, there seems to be around ~50 East Asian Nobel laureates (excluding the Nobel Peace prize which isn't awarded on the basis of IQ). If we use your simplistic calculus where modern populations are what matter, ~50 or so is still a drop in the bucket in a population that's 1.7 billion. Especially in comparison to Ashkenazi Jews who have a far smaller population. In fact, percentage-wise, it would seem Ashkenazi Jews are in the lead when it comes to Nobel prizes, and it's not even close. Yet East Asians are the second highest in terms of IQ. Shouldn't they have the second highest number of awards according to your logic? But they don't. At least it looks like to me that white people (e.g. Europeans, Americans) have the second highest number of Nobel prizes. Why is that?

      5. To my knowledge, the first East Asian to receive a Nobel Prize was in 1949. Yet the Nobel had been awarded for nearly 50 years already. Why did East Asians not receive a Nobel until nearly 50 years after the Nobels were awarded? That is, in 1948, it could be argued that 0 East Asians received Nobels, despite the Nobel having been around for nearly 50 years, so does that imply c. 1948 that East Asians have a lower IQ than white people?

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    54. "If Australian Aborigines are as bright as Ashkenazi Jews then where are their scientific achievements?"

      1. For one thing, since the 1700s onwards, it's arguable Australian Aborigines have been so oppressed and suppressed and all but killed off or forced into servitude by white Australians and their predecessors (predominatly British) that they wouldn't have been able to focus a whole lot on "scientific achievements". For example, see the Stolen Generations which didn't really end until the 1970s, a period of time within many people's memories today.

      2. For another, scientific achievements rarely take place in an intellectual vacuum. Even Newton and Einstein had access to the research and works of other scientists who came before them; even they "stood on the shoulders of giants". However, since the 1970s, Australian Aborigines have been extremely distrustful of white Australians thanks to things like their children being forcibly separated from them. It has made Australian Aborigines more isolated as a community (not that they're originally a single community but they've more or less had to become a loose single community over time). Even the Ashkenazi Jews were able to read about science from other Europeans when they were living in ghettos, and certainly many if not most Ashkenazi Jews were integrated and even assimiliated into European and American societies by the 1900s when the Nobels were awarded. Modern Australian Aborigines still struggle with integration let alone assimiliation into modern Australian society.

      3. If you mean prior to Europeans arriving in Australia, then there are various possibilities of why Australian Aborigines still lived in the stone age. But I'll leave that for another time because the context here is modern given talk about Nobel Prizes and IQ tests.

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    55. Steve Jackson

      "If you can find a geneticist who says that the current understanding of genetics makes it impossible that population groups have different innate cognitive and behavioral traits then I'll get interested."

      Hm, "impossible"? That's an "impossibly" high standard. It's not "impossible" that bigfoot, yeti, or the abominable snowman exist. It's not "impossible" that UFOs are intelligent intergalactic alien species visiting Earth. It's not "impossible" panspermia is what kicked off the origin of life on our planet. It's not "impossible" that our universe is part of the multiverse.

      Or to bring it back to humans and genetics, it's not "impossible" that neo-Darwinism is correct. It's not "impossible" the standard evolutionary tree of life is correct. It's not "impossible" all life on Earth including humans ultimately evolved from a single ancient common ancestor (perhaps a single-celled organism). It's not "impossible" Neanderthals are an entirely separate hominid subspecies which modern humans interbred with such that our DNA is now part Neanderthal DNA. Indeed, there seems to be reasonable evidence for what's in this paragraph if you accept neo-Darwinism and mainstream scientific thinking on human evolution (which, by the way, and as a point of interest, David Reich certainly does as he's an expert when it comes to Neanderthals interbreeding with modern humans).

      "I don't know much about genetics, but here is geneticist David Reich in his book Who We Are (2018): 'Is performance on an intelligence test or the number of years of school a person attends shaped by the way a person is brought up? Of course. But does it measure something having to do with some aspect of behavior or cognition? Almost certainly. And since all traits influenced by genetics are expected to differ across populations (because the frequencies of genetic variations are rarely exactly the same across populations), the genetic influences on behavior and cognition will differ across populations, too.'"

      1. Actually, this is from Reich's now infamous NYT op-ed which caused an avalanche of public debate. I don't think Reich's op-ed is an excerpt from his book either. I have his book as an ebook in front of me, I've searched for this passage, but I don't find this passage in his ebook. It looks like it's only in his op-ed piece.

      2. In addition, the geneticist Neil Risch, whom I already quoted above to you, would dissent.

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    56. 3. What's more, it looks like a group of 60 or so other relevant scholars have challenged Reich's piece (here). Of course, much of this may be political rather than scientific disagreement, due to the hot topic of people inferring racism from talk about race and intelligence, but even factoring this in, it looks like there are other scientists including geneticists who disagree with Reich's conclusions on scientific grounds. What do you do when experts disagree with other experts in the same field?

      4. In fact, Reich himself seems to want to have it both ways. On the one hand, he has said what you've quoted him as saying. On the other hand, Reich also believes race is largely a social construct. In fact, Reich doesn't even like to use the term "race" but prefers the more neutral "populations".

      5. If you accept Reich's conclusions, then at least to some degree you have to buy into human evolution as well as Reich's evolutionary timeline for human evolution (after all, Reich is a trendsetter when it comes to the genetics of ancient human evolution). By contrast, many other scientists (including most conservative evangtelical Christians who are scientists) have dissented from human evolution in the sense Reich would mean by human evolution.

      For example, Reich takes issue with a doyen of evolutionary biology Richard Lewontin's argument that, on average, genetic differences between "populations" are far less than the genetic differences between individuals. But Reich bases his disagreement in large part on the average time of separation between different human "populations" when they diverged from their ancestral "populations".

      6. Speaking of which, modern human populations (races/ethnicities) at best serve as surrogates for their ancestral populations (races/ethnicities). For example, there are many geneticists including Reich who argue that modern African-Americans have a not insignificant quantity and even "quality" of European DNA in their genome. So in this respect modern African-Americans aren't genetically equivalent to modern Africans or to ancestral predecessors. Yet this would be problematic for your side, the "racial hereditarian" side, which assumes genetic equivalence, or at least more genetic equivalence than what geneticists like Reich would argue for, between African-Americans and Africans and their ancestral predecessors.

      7. This further lays into the issue about whether races/ethnicities are more genetically discrete or continuous.

      8. I have a lot more to say, but it's getting late. Maybe I'll try to say more later.

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    57. Here's a quotation from Reich in the very same article:

      "If scientists can be confident of anything, it is that whatever we currently believe about the genetic nature of differences among populations is most likely wrong. For example, my laboratory discovered in 2016, based on our sequencing of ancient human genomes, that 'whites' are not derived from a population that existed from time immemorial, as some people believe. Instead, 'whites' represent a mixture of four ancient populations that lived 10,000 years ago and were each as different from one another as Europeans and East Asians are today."

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    58. Reich said in a follow-up:

      "Having been immersed in the ancient DNA revolution for the past 10 years, I am confident that anyone who pays attention to what it is finding cannot come away feeling affirmed in racist beliefs. My childhood guesses about who we are and how we’re related to one another — and about the nature of differences among people — have been shown to be wrong again and again."

      "As Hamlet says to his friend in Shakespeare’s play, 'There are more things in heaven and earth, Horatio/Than are dreamt of in your philosophy.' And that’s what the ancient DNA revolution is reminding us repeatedly. Anyone who thinks they can guess what the nature of human variation is based on the data we had available to us before these breakthroughs is wrong."

      This echoes what I said above:

      "6. Again, I think there is some degree of genetic heritability to intelligence, but I think it's far from the whole picture. At the same time, I think the current whole picture isn't even all that clear. There's still so much we don't understand about genetics and heritability, especially when it comes to complex traits like intelligence. Molecular and cell biology including genetics (and population genetics, which is what a lot of this is about) still seems to be in its infancy or at least young adulthood as a field of study. This should make people cautious about drawing sweeping conclusions like about race and intelligence. There's nothing wrong with saying 'I don't know'."

      Delete
    59. More Reich (emphasis mine):

      Indeed, we have known for almost a half-century that for the great majority of human traits shaped by genetics, there is far greater variation among individuals than populations. This means that when a teacher looks around a classroom of students of diverse “races,” she or he shouldn’t see them as members of fundamentally different groups of people. “Race” has trivial predictive power about an individual person’s biological capabilities. Even if there are slight average differences among groups of humans, individuals from any group are capable of excelling in any realm.

      1. “Race” is fundamentally a social category — not a biological one — as anthropologists have shown.

      3. Present-day human populations, which often but not always are correlated to today’s “race” categories...

      4. Genetic variations are likely to affect behavior and cognition just as they affect other traits, even though we know that the average genetic influences on behavior and cognition are strongly affected by upbringing and are likely to be more modest than genetic influences on bodily traits or disease.

      In short, I think everyone can understand that very modest differences across human population in the genetic influences on behavior and cognition are to be expected. And I think everyone can understand that even if we do not yet have any idea about what the difference are, we do not need to be worried about what we will find because we can already be sure that any differences will be small (far smaller than those among individuals).

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    60. Just a few more comments:

      1. If you accept what Reich says as correct, then one conclusion is intelligence in races/ethnicities isn't necessarily set in stone. Genetics isn't necessarily destiny. Intelligence or cognitive ability can be malleable, at least to some degree. So even if (arguendo) "blacks have lower average IQs than whites", that's only temporary. It's conceivable blacks will have higher IQs than whites in the future, given enough time.

      2. Unless you take the view that there are predetermined limitations on cognitive abilities between races, but then the question is where's the evidence for these predetermined limitations?

      3. In fact, it's possible in the future that neither white nor black will even exist as a discrete "race".

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    61. Steve Jackson

      "If IQ is 50 to 80 percent heritable, which almost no one doubts..."

      FTFY: If IQ is 50 to 80 percent heritable, which almost no racial hereditarian doubts...

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    62. Reich has said

      "Genetic variations are likely to affect behavior and cognition just as they affect other traits, even though we know that the average genetic influences on behavior and cognition are strongly affected by upbringing and are likely to be more modest than genetic influences on bodily traits or disease."

      It's noteworthy Reich thinks "the average genetic influences on behavior and cognition are...likely to be more modest than genetic influences on bodily traits or disease".

      Why? Let me explain.

      Just because a particular person or population has a particular gene doesn't mean they will definitely get a particular disease associated with that particular gene. For example, if a group of women have the BRCA gene (mutation) which is linked to breast cancer, it's not a foregone conclusion these women will definitely develop breast cancer. It makes it more likely, but it doesn't mean it's their destiny to develop breast cancer just because they have a gene that's strongly correlated with breast cancer. (Of course, different genes and different diseases will have different probabilities.)

      Now, Reich says genetic influences on cognition are likely even "more modest" than genetic influences on disease. So Reich believes there's even weaker correlation between genes and intelligence than between genes and disease. If that's true, then (a fortiori) it's possible just because a particular person or population has a particular IQ-linked gene doesn't necessarily mean that particular person or population is either more or less intelligent than another person or population without a particular IQ-linked gene, as a very simplistic example.

      Granted, this may or may not be how the genomics of intelligence works. (If anything, I would suspect it's far more complicated.) However, at this point, I'm simply responding to you on your own grounds.

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    63. Dude:

      1. "What's more, it looks like a group of 60 or so other relevant scholars have challenged Reich's piece (here). " I'm not sure how you can call these "relevant scholars." Most aren't geneticists. Lots of sociologists, law professors, etc.


      2. "Yet East Asians are the second highest in terms of IQ. Shouldn't they have the second highest number of awards according to your logic? But they don't. At least it looks like to me that white people (e.g. Europeans, Americans) have the second highest number of Nobel prizes. Why is that?"

      As I said, there is likely less variation among the mean. And I never said there is no cultural component.


      3. Yes Reich seems to backtrack, but I doubt he really thinks the future research is going to disconfirm stereotypes. One can only imagine how many Jews he works with in his department. I doubt he'd bet the next mortgage payment on the idea that Ashkanazi Jews don't have a genetic advantage over Aborigines.

      4. If Aborgines and Sub-Sharan Africans never developed the wheel, writing, math that isn't evidence of lower innate intelligence? What would constitute evidence?


      5. If you don't like Nobel prizes as a metric, then on what metric would you put the intelligence of Sub-Saharan Africans and Aborigines on even close to the same level as whites?

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    64. 6. "So even if (arguendo) "blacks have lower average IQs than whites", that's only temporary. It's conceivable blacks will have higher IQs than whites in the future, given enough time. "

      It's conceivable that I win the lottery. Incidentally, James Flynn admitted that blacks Americans are losing perhaps 3/4 a point in IQ per generation due to dysgenic mating (60 percent of black births are to mothers below the average black IQ).

      7. "Unless you take the view that there are predetermined limitations on cognitive abilities between races, but then the question is where's the evidence for these predetermined limitations?"

      I've given you the evidence: Spearman's hypothesis, regression to the mean, brain size, Kierkegard's pre print which shows that the more European ancestry a black or Hispanic has the higher the IQ, Piffer's study on GWAS hits that correlate to intelligence, the inability to raise IQ, adoption studies, the Shaker Heights phenomenon, etc.

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    65. Steve,

      "Explain how the clustering of genius in Classical Greece is partly genetic? Explain how the fact that scientific genius clusters around the first three decades of 20C physics is partly genetic? "


      I'm having a hard time following your point. Russia in the 20th century produced far few outstanding novelists and composers than in 19th century Russians. The Russians didn't change genetically. It was, I assume, two world wars and communism.

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    66. What makes the circumstances more propitious for genius to cluster around Classical Greece rather than other periods? What makes the circumstances more propitious for genius to cluster around the first three decades of 20C physics?

      Delete
    67. i) The development of writing is only a few thousand years old, and disseminated through process of cultural diffusion. Were preliterate humans less intelligent?

      ii) Many geniuses never had an opportunity to flourish. If you're a medieval Eskimo genius, what are your opportunities to develop or record your genius?

      Scientific and mathematical achievements are cumulative. If Newton was born in the Dark Ages, he'd be unable to realize his potential.

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    68. "If you don't like Nobel prizes as a metric, then on what metric would you put the intelligence of Sub-Saharan Africans and Aborigines on even close to the same level as whites?"

      Who would last longer stranded on an island, the Aborigine or the left-coast ivory-towered white professor? If you had to track an animal through the brush or starve, who's going to live: the suburban white lawyer or the African tribesman?

      Intelligence is a matter of context. I used to know a carpenter who could only read at junior high level, but could just glance at the slope of a roof, turn around, and without measuring or drawing a single line on a board, cut it so it would fit the slope exactly. He didn't know how to do trigonometry, and yet he would get the precise angle necessary not only one one side but on the opposite side when he's flipping the angle mentally. What metric would you use to gauge his intelligence?

      For that matter, most people think that being highly functional in mathematics makes one smart, but math has nothing to do with intelligence. Know how I know that? Because I have a calculator that's literally as dumb as a box of rocks and yet it solves math problems faster and more accurately than I, or you, or any other human being ever could. Yet math proficiency--something that can be done by a machine without a brain--is somehow a metric by which intelligence is measured. "Hey look, I can do a task that literally can be done without a brain, only not as good! Who cares that I could only survive a week without electricity? I'm clearly smarter than that guy who can't do math but who knows exactly what nights the herd is going to be at the waterhole and which nights they'll be hiding on the plain."

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    69. Steve Jackson

      "I'm not sure how you can call these "relevant scholars." Most aren't geneticists. Lots of sociologists, law professors, etc."

      1. I took that into consideration above. At the same time, there are scientists including geneticists, and I've cited geneticists too.

      2. In fact, I even quoted several things from Reich himself which are in tension with what you've said! But I don't see you responding to any of the points Reich himself makes?

      3. As you know, Charles Murray isn't a geneticist. But he still gets a say, doesn't he? Or are we going to outright dismiss his work because he's not a geneticist (e.g. The Bell Curve)?

      "As I said, there is likely less variation among the mean."

      1. That's still too vague to explain the phenomena. How is that an explanation given the data?

      2. You're just using a term ("less variation among the mean") in lieu of an argument when you really need to explicitly spell out your argument. Indeed, that's been a consistent issue for you: using buzzwords rather than making arguments.

      3. Nobel prize winners are presumably not people "among the mean".

      "And I never said there is no cultural component."

      1. You've only admitted this recently. After our many responses to you.

      2. Still, that's disingenuous, because your point from the beginning has been that genetics causally influences intelligence (as measured by IQ score) among races/ethnicities. In your view, at best, culture would be secondary to biological explanations, would it not? Or are you now saying culture is on par with biology (e.g. genetics) in explaining differences in IQ scores among races/ethnicities?

      "Yes Reich seems to backtrack, but I doubt he really thinks the future research is going to disconfirm stereotypes. One can only imagine how many Jews he works with in his department. I doubt he'd bet the next mortgage payment on the idea that Ashkanazi Jews don't have a genetic advantage over Aborigines."

      All this is just speculation on your part. I've quoted Reich's exact words verbatim.

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    70. "If Aborgines and Sub-Sharan Africans never developed the wheel, writing, math that isn't evidence of lower innate intelligence? What would constitute evidence?"

      Incans never "developed" the wheel, writing (they used quipu), or math (beyond numerical counting), yet they built an entire civilization.

      "If you don't like Nobel prizes as a metric, then on what metric would you put the intelligence of Sub-Saharan Africans and Aborigines on even close to the same level as whites?"

      1. I never said I don't like Nobel prizes as a metric. Rather, I was responding to you on your own grounds. You were the one who brought up Nobel prizes as a metric. I argued they don't get you to where you want to go.

      2. Peter Pike brought up good examples about intelligence among hunter-gather type societies. Likewise Steve Hays made good points about preliterate humans.

      3. To tack onto what they've said, it's possible the Incans had very intelligent people, otherwise it doesn't seem likely they would have developed such an advanced civilization, but since the Incans didn't keep written records, we don't know.

      4. It sounds like you are assuming the absence of evidence is evidence of absence.

      "It's conceivable that I win the lottery."

      1. As an aside, it's ironic you say this, since you're the one who talked about "impossibility" (albeit in a different context, see above).

      2. I'm not speaking about "conceivable" in the way you are using it, as if anything is possible in theory. No, I'm speaking about human evolution in the context of Reich's argument. It logically follows from what Reich has said that it's "conceivable" - in fact, if you like, I'd even say quite plausible given Reich's argument - that humans will evolve such that white and black either won't be discrete racial/ethnic categories (probably something entirely different, even as different as whites are from East Asians today, as Reich himself has said) or if they remain continuous with contemporary blacks and whites that intelligences could be in reversed roles from today.

      See, that's the problem with you bringing up Reich - if you accept his conclusions, then you have to accept at least the premises on which his conclusions rest.

      "I've given you the evidence: Spearman's hypothesis, regression to the mean, brain size, Kierkegard's pre print which shows that the more European ancestry a black or Hispanic has the higher the IQ, Piffer's study on GWAS hits that correlate to intelligence, the inability to raise IQ, adoption studies, the Shaker Heights phenomenon, etc."

      1. Actually, and again, what you've mainly done is cite buzzwords. You cite buzzwords and related terms that other studies from other experts have challenged. It makes you sound like you know what you're talking about, but do you? Thus far I don't think so.

      2. Also, I've responded to some of these, though it'd take me a considerable amount of time to respond to everything. For example, I asked you questions about what you meant when you talked about brain size, though you originally said brain "weight", not brain size. But you never explained what you meant by brain size, whether you meant brain mass, brain volume, cranial capacity, what about the rest of the central nervous system, is it the amount of neurons, their quality, what about glial cells, what about various neurotransmitters, what about the neuroelectrical activity of the brain, what about cerebral bloodflow and its effects, and so on and so forth. These all matter inasmuch as they are part of the anatomy and physiology of the brain.

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    71. Here's something relevant Richard Lewontin has said:

      A major problem in understanding what geneticists have found out about the relation between genes and manifest characteristics of organisms is an overly flexible use of language that creates ambiguities of meaning. In particular, their use of the terms "heritable" and "heritability" is so confusing that an attempt at its clarification occupies the last two chapters of The Mirage of a Space Between Nature and Nurture. When a biological characteristic is said to be "heritable," it means that it is capable of being transmitted from parents to offspring, just as money may be inherited, although neither is inevitable. In contrast, "heritability" is a statistical concept, the proportion of variation of a characteristic in a population that is attributable to genetic variation among individuals. The implication of "heritability" is that some proportion of the next generation will possess it.

      The move from "heritable" to "heritability" is a switch from a qualitative property at the level of an individual to a statistical characterization of a population. Of course, to have a nonzero heritability in a population, a trait must be heritable at the individual level. But it is important to note that even a trait that is perfectly heritable at the individual level might have essentially zero heritability at the population level. If I possess a unique genetic variant that enables me with no effort at all to perform a task that many other people have learned to do only after great effort, then that ability is heritable in me and may possibly be passed on to my children, but it may also be of zero heritability in the population.

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    72. Steve Jackson

      "regression to the mean"

      "I'm taller than my parents. There are always exceptions."

      1. Of course, regression to the mean is a statistical phenomenon. It's observed at the level of a population, not at the level of individuals. Indeed, it's notable how all this talk about race and IQ is based on statistical phenemona which apply across populations rather than at the level of individuals. Yet what's true of populations may or may not be true of individuals in a population. Hence, for instance, questions like Steve Hays's question are quite relevant: "Is it exceptional that a genius child is smarter than his parents, or is that typical? Is it exceptional that some siblings are smarter than other siblings, or is that commonplace?" (Perhaps this is partly because The Bell Curve, which kicked off much of the debate about race and IQ, is a book that is fine when it comes to sociology and statistics, but is lacking when it comes to the sciences such as genetics and neuroscience.)

      2. Also, regression to the mean when applied to race and IQ makes several assumptions which need to be justified:

      a. One has to assume IQ is as simple to measure as height when analogies are drawn between height and IQ as examples of regression to the mean. That an IQ test (e.g. Stanford-Binet) measuring intelligence is as "accurate" as a stadiometer or tape measure or ruler measuring a person's height.

      b. One has to assume there are no other factors involved that could influence the data (e.g. social, cultural, economic). Obviously that's hotly debated. Nature vs nurture. Biology vs environment.

      c. One has to assume races are discrete rather than continuous. But that's another hotly debated topic.

      d. One has to assume the genetic variation among (say) the black population is the same as it is across the white population. Yet many geneticists have argued there is far more genetic variation between blacks and other blacks than there is genetic variation between blacks and whites (e.g. see here). This is expressed phenotypically too. For example, the Maasai are among the tallest people in the world, while the Pygmy peoples are among the shortest. Black populations differ more from one another than from non-black populations.

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    73. Regression to the mean is hard to explain. I've never seen a good explanation of why black IQs regress to a lower mean, particularly in siblings, who share a similar environment. What's your explanation?

      Likewise, why do Hispanics and Blacks have higher IQs the more European ancestry?


      Delete
    74. Steve,

      "i) The development of writing is only a few thousand years old, and disseminated through process of cultural diffusion. Were preliterate humans less intelligent?"


      Some were and some weren't. Some groups are innately more intelligent than others.

      ii) Many geniuses never had an opportunity to flourish. If you're a medieval Eskimo genius, what are your opportunities to develop or record your genius?

      Yes, if Newton had been born among the Aborigines he would probably have been forgotten to history.

      But Newton was born in a high IQ society and at a time when society was on the rise, so to speak.

      Again, I just don't know how your points make it likely that all ethnic groups have the same or even roughly the same innate intelligence. There is nothing in history that indicates this.

      The Roma have an IQ in the low 70s. They have been in Europe for a thousand years. Why are there no Roma Newtons, Teslas, etc.?

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    75. Steve Jackson

      1. I'll note you haven't responded to most of my points and questions to you. Of course, that's your prerogative.

      At the same time, it's my prerogative to answer or not answer as well. Or to answer in ways I believe to be better - which I'll opt for here.

      2. I'll start bigger picture and painting my own position. To my knowledge, it seems fair to say the three main positions in this debate over race/ethnicity and intelligence as measured by IQ tests are:

      a. The genetic hereditarian position. Intelligence among races/ethnicities is primarily or purely influenced by genetics.

      b. The environmental position. Intelligence among races/ethnicities is primarily or purely influenced by environmental factors (e.g. upbringing, culture, socioeconomic status).

      c. The genetic-environmental position. An even split between the two.

      3. Speaking for myself, I'm essentially agnostic about all this. At this point in time, I don't think we can conclusively say one way or the other. Like I alluded to earlier, there's nothing wrong with saying "I don't know".

      However, if I was forced to pick one of the three, then I'd pick the genetic-environmental position, because I think I see the arguments and evidence pointing in both directions.

      Actually, I think it'd better to say it's a triad: genetics, environment, and mind. All three influence intelligence to one degree or another. Fundamentally speaking, though, as I've said above, I think intelligence is mind-based inasmuch as the mind is distinct from the physical brain, though the physical brain mediates the mind. However, I'm no philosopher, so I'm sure this could be improved upon.

      4. As far as your questions, I think the more fundamental issue is I don't agree with the assumptions behind the questions. I think it'd better to challenge the assumptions behind the questions. In that vein I pointed out a few assumptions I think may exist in my reply about regression to the mean above. I'll point out more below.

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    76. 5. If you wish to talk about things that are hard to explain, what about intelligence itself?

      a. Intelligence is hard to explain! How would you define intelligence?

      b. Intelligence is hard to measure too. How well do IQ tests measure intelligence?

      c. What IQ tests were used in the various studies to come up with black, white, and other races/ethnicities' IQs? Were they all the same IQ test or at least equivalent? Were they all standardized across various time periods, for surely IQ tests taken in c. 1950 would be different than IQ tests taken today?

      d. What do the IQ tests consist of content-wise? For example, Raven's progressive matrices would seem to be a more fair component of an IQ test than IQ tests involving questions like how many cylinders is in the engine of this or that car model (which was actually a question in the earliest IQ tests), because Raven's progressive matrices attempt to remove as much cultural bias as possible.

      e. To my knowledge, the most commonly used IQ test in the US is the Wechsler Scale (WAIS). Briefly, it tests four major components of intelligence: verbal comprehension, perceptual reasoning, working memory, and processing speed. Each of these is debatable as to how reliably they reflect intelligence.

      For example, verbal comprehension attempts in part to measure "degree of general information acquired from culture". If Albert Einstein were instantly reanimated today in order to take the Wechsler IQ test, he would have no general information about our culture, so he might not do as well on the verbal comprehension component as someone who is immersed in our culture would.

      Another example is what Peter Pike pointed out earlier. A calculator has greater memory as well as processing speed than most human beings, likewise other electronic devices like smartphones and computers, but that wouldn't imply the calculator or computer is more intelligent than most human beings, because a calculator or computer is basically just a dumb machine invented by humans.

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    77. 6. What about race? How would you define race?

      a. Of course, there's the side that race doesn't exist, scientifically speaking. That race is primarily a social or cultural construct. That sort of thing. But obviously that's not you.

      b. Since you're a genetic hereditarian, I assume you'd define race as something like "genetically distinct populations or subspecies in the same species". Is that about right? Would you change it? Add or subtract from the definition? Would you add phenotypical characteristics? Morphology? Would these populations have to be allopatric populations, that is, separated by geography to some degree, though not necessarily completely isolated? Or would they have to be completely isolated? These are the sorts of basic questions (to say nothing of more complex questions) that even a fairly vanilla definition of race based on genetic hereditarianism have to grapple with.

      c. According to many geneticists, Africans who are from the regions of East Africa (especially the Great Rift Valley) have considerably more genetic variation among one another than they do with (say) whites or East Asians.

      The evolutionist's explanation for this is that East Africa is the origin of humanity. The birthplace of archaic then modern humanity. (I'll leave an exception like Sahelanthropus alone for now since it's less mainstream.) Humans in East Africa evolved for millions of years in this region before they ever migrated out of Africa. Humans evolved for a longer period of time in East Africa than humans have evolved since leaving Africa. It's thought humans diverged from chimpanzees approximately 7 million years ago, while the first migration "out of Africa" occurred around 250,000 years ago at the earliest.

      Moreover, many geneticists and evolutionists argue human populations that migrated out of Africa have approximately 5% Neanderthal DNA, whereas human populations that remained in Africa do not have Neanderthal DNA. That's because human populations that migrated out of Africa intermingled with Neanderthals, while human populations that remained in Africa did not.

      Now here's the question. How would genetic hereditarians who do not accept human evolution (which I presume you do not but correct me if I'm wrong) explain the larger genetic diversity between Africans and other Africans than between Africans and other races (e.g. white, Asian)?

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    78. Steve Jackson

      "The Roma have an IQ in the low 70s. They have been in Europe for a thousand years. Why are there no Roma Newtons, Teslas, etc.?"

      How would you know what the average Roma or Romani's IQ was a thousand years ago? Did IQ tests (equivalent to modern IQ tests) exist a thousand years ago?

      "Yes, if Newton had been born among the Aborigines he would probably have been forgotten to history."

      If this is true, then why couldn't it likewise apply to a hypothetical Romani Newton? If there was a Romani Newton, why couldn't he have been forgotten to history since his people are an itinerant people, never putting down roots, always moving from place to place, gypsies keeping to themselves, etc.?

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  3. Is there any inconsistency in the treatment of pagan wives in the OT? For example, I assume Ruth was okay even tho' called "the Moabitess," because presumably she became a true Jewish proselyte. But even in the era of the patriarchs, there was an idea that Isaac should marry his cousin so as not to marry a pagan woman. Yet later there is evidently no problem with Joseph marrying an Egyptian or Moses marrying a non-Jewish woman.

    I guess we can figure that the standard of "being Jewish only if your mother is Jewish or a full proselyte" became hard and fast only after the giving of the Mosaic law?

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    Replies
    1. In general, the OT frowns on interfaith marriage, which overlaps with interracial marriage in Bible times.

      There's the distinction between prescriptions/proscriptions, customs, and descriptive narratives.

      Joseph's marriage is the kind of union the OT normally frowns on. However, there are extenuating circumstances in his case. He was cut off from his own people-group. Already a 30-year-old bachelor.

      Also, it would be imprudent to snub Pharaoh. Conversely, it would be imprudent to marry a pagan wife. So he must choose between two imprudent courses of action. That mitigates the choice.

      In some cases (e.g. Solomon), the husband assimilates to the religion of the wife, but in other cases the wife assimilates to the religion of the husband.

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