Tuesday, February 28, 2023

Court Hears Internet Immunity Case

The US Supreme Court just had oral arguments on whether big internet should get the broad liability immunity that they now enjoy:
Today, the Supreme Court heard oral arguments to decide whether Section 230 immunity shields online platforms from liabilities when relying on algorithms to make targeted recommendations. Many Section 230 defenders feared that the court might be eager to chip away at the statute’s protections, terrified that in the worst-case scenario, the Supreme Court could doom the Internet as we know it.
There are some legitimate legal issues here, but they kept going back to ridiculous hypotheticals:
JUSTICE SOTOMAYOR: -- if you write an algorithm for someone that, in its structure, ensures the discrimination between people, a dating app, for example, someone comes to you and says, I'm going to create an algorithm that inherently discriminates against people, it won't match black people to white people, Asian people to Hispanics, it's going to discriminate, you would say that Internet provider is discriminating, correct?

MR. SCHNAPPER [lawyer against Google]: I would ...

JUSTICE BARRETT: Ms. Blatt, what about Justice Sotomayor's dating hypothetical? The discrimination, like, oh, we're only going to -- we're not going to match black people and white people, et cetera. What about that? Is that given 230's shield?

MS. BLATT [lawyer for Google]: Absolutely not, because any disparate treatment claim or race discrimination is saying you're treating people different regardless of the content.

It appears that think it should be illegal for someone to express a racial preference while dating!

Someday, if a White woman wants to get married to a White man, she will have to document that she has at least tried dating some Black men, as well as some LGBTQ people.

Google may win this case, but it appears that it will lose some of its immunity.

Monday, February 27, 2023

Okay to Blaspheme Christianity, but not Islam

There used to be a Christian Church of England, and it was the national religion for Britain.

Now the situation is so completely reversed that you can hate Whites and Christians, but not Moslems.


England and Wales abolished their blasphemy law in 2008. On 24 April 2020, the Scottish Government published a new bill that sought to reform hate crime legislation to provide better protection against race, sex, age and religious discrimination, and also decriminalised blasphemy. ...

Yet prohibitions against blasphemy are apparently still being enforced in England—but only in defense of a single religion, and in schools, not the courts (though the coppers get involved). Guess which religion? ...

Four pupils have been suspended from a West Yorkshire secondary school after a copy of the Quran was damaged by students.

In case you think it is good to protect minorities, see this:
There are more Indians among the highest number of property owners in London than the English themselves, according to a recent report
Pakistanis are in third place.

Sunday, February 26, 2023

Medical Schools Go Woke

American medical schools all have affirmative action programs, where they admit Blacks and Hispanics with low scores, and demand higher scores from Asians. They also have diversity committees making more mischief.

Biology professor Jerry Coyne has done an excellent job of tracking wokeness on campuses, and reports that a California medical school committee is upset at the criticism:

That task force builds on layers of prior DEI bureaucratic expansion, spanning nearly a decade. This programming includes the “UCSF Anti-Racism Initiative,” started after the summer of 2020, which established dozens of new institutional policies throughout the university, such as “evaluating contributions to diversity statements in faculty advancement portfolios.” ...

One commenter repeated the same line in every answer: “I fundamentally do not feel or have ever felt that UCSF is a racist place. These are grossly misdirected funds and efforts.” Several cautioned against embracing discriminatory policies in the name of anti-racism. “All of the above sounds to me like trying to fight racism with more racism,” one noted. Still others urge the task force not to distract from UCSF’s focus on scientific research. As one commenter put it, “UCSF is a medical and life science campus. Its strength lies in its objective data-driven experimental approach. Qualitative and sociological research has no place at UCSF and no place in scientific medical research and will undermine UCSF’s reputation.” ...

It is important to note that while many of the comments received were constructive and helpful, task force members were traumatized by a striking number of comments that denied the existence of inequities and racism, and others that minimized the burden that racism has imposed, particularly on Black Americans at UCSF. ...

It is extremely important to acknowledge the magnitude of the emotional labor and trauma that many of the Task Force members endured in doing this work, particularly during the public comment period. Not only are many of the Task Force members, especially our Black colleagues, encountering and navigating racism on a daily basis at work and outside of work, we are also volunteering our very limited time to dive into grueling work (the minority tax is real!). Then to be gaslit by some members of our very own UCSF community was very painful.

So a bunch of college officials spend years producing documents that accuse everyone of racism, and recommending racist policies in the name of anti-racism. And they they complain about being traumatized by getting comments questioning the need for what they have done?

Thse are anti-white and anti-Asian bigots subverting our medical training in ways that will kill people. There are no Black colleagues encountering racism. It is all a big hoax.

If they had examples of racism, or other evidence to justify their policies, they would just give it. They would not be traumatized. They are only traumatized because their work is dishonest and destructive.

Saturday, February 25, 2023

Dilbert says It's Okay to be White

The Dilbert cartoonist has gotten flak for saying he prefers to align himself with those who agree that It's okay to be white. A new poll shows that only half of Blacks agree, and a leading Jewish organization vehemently disagrees.

It is hard to understand why Blacks and Jews hate Whites so much.

The Dilbert guy is a comic, so I would not necessarily take what he says literally, but he is probably genuinely appalled that so many people hate Whites. A more complete quote from him is here.

Here is typcial White House bragging:

The Cabinet is a majority of people of color for the first time in history. The Cabinet is a majority female for the first time in history. A majority of White House senior staff identify as female. Forty percent of White House senior staff identify as part of racially diverse communities. And a record seven assistants to the Presidents are openly LGBTQ+.

So, again, this is something that the President prides himself on, that he actually has taken action to show the diversity of this administration. And so, he will continue not just with this Fed — the Fed Vice Chair occupancy but with any occupancy or any position that’s within the White House.

Inflation is out of control, but be assured that straight White males are being blackballed. More that anything else, the Biden administration represents those who hate straight White males.

There is a war on Whites. A great many of the anti-whites do not believe Whites have any right to exist.

Update: Dilbert tweets:

A lot of people are angry at me today but I haven't yet heard anyone disagree. I make two main points:

1. Treat everyone as an individual (no discrimination).

2. Avoid any group that doesn't respect you. Does anyone think that is bad advice?

Some newspapers are canceling his comic, but no one tries to explain why he should associate with people who do not agree that it is okay to be White.

Update: Ben Shapiro shows how the Left accepts anti-white racism.

Friday, February 24, 2023

Republicans Release the J6 Tapes

AP reports:
Thousands of hours of surveillance footage from the Jan. 6, 2021, attack on the U.S. Capitol are being made available to Fox News Channel host Tucker Carlson, a stunning level of access granted by House Speaker Kevin McCarthy that Democrats swiftly condemned as a “grave” breach of security with potentially far-reaching consequences.

The hard-right political commentator said his team is spending the week at the Capitol poring through the video and preparing to reveal their findings to his viewers. But granting exclusive access to sensitive Jan. 6 security footage to such a deeply partisan figure is a highly unusual move,

The Democrats spent two years trying to convince us that the Jan. 6 protest was one of the most important events in USA history. And yet they would not show us the tapes of what really happened.

Thursday, February 23, 2023

The Root Cause of the Ukraine War

I believe that the Ukraine War is primarily a dispute between the USA wanting Ukraine in NATO, and Russia wanting Ukraine neutral.

I could be wrong, so I read this Quillette essay:

During a May 2022 debate on the conflict in Ukraine, John J. Mearsheimer—one of the world’s most prominent political scientists and international relations theorists—vehemently denied that Vladimir Putin’s invasion of the country is an imperialist war of conquest: “There is absolutely no evidence to support that argument,” he told the crowd. “There’s no evidence that he thinks that’s desirable. There’s no evidence that he thinks that’s feasible. And there’s no evidence in the public record that he’s ever said that that’s what he intends to do.” This was an odd claim in the spring of 2022 after Putin had ordered 190,000 soldiers across the border to conquer Ukraine.

These remarks were not exceptional—Mearsheimer regularly contends that the annexation of Ukrainian territory is not imperialist in nature and that Russia merely wants to address its own perfectly legitimate security concerns. ...

Mearsheimer is a foreign policy “realist,” which is to say that he is primarily concerned with how power is distributed in the international system. Realists believe that states (especially great powers) are the most important actors in that system, constantly vying to maximize their relative power in the absence of a centralized global authority. ...

Mearsheimer is fond of quoting diplomats and scholars who warned that NATO expansion was a “fateful error” (in the words of George F. Kennan). In this sense, realists see the Russian invasion of Ukraine as a form of vindication.

The essay goes on to criticize Mearsheimer in various ways. He seems to be more right than wrong to me.

It appears to me that the Biden administration wanted war with Russia. It deliberately and unnecessarily provoked Russia, and escalated the war by supplying massive amounts of weapons, carrying on an economic war, and blowing up the Nord Stream pipeline.

It is alarming how pro-war our leaders are. You might not have even heard of this anti-war protest.

Here is what Putin said in a recent speech:

1. “The U.S. has used Ukraine to prepare for a large war. They have publicly admitted that.” ...

2. “The West is guilty of escalation.” ...

3. “They [the West] want to have a strategic defeat of Russia. … It means they want to have no more, anything to do with Russia. They want to have a global resistance against Russia.”

Also, according to this tweet:
- Anglican Church plans to consider idea of gender-neutral God, they don't know what they're doing
- Russia would never yield to Western attempts to divide its society
- We'll never be like Western elites, who are engaged in witch hunts
We should try to understand Putin, even if we disagree.

Donald Trump says:

World War III Has Never Been Closer ... I was the only President who rejected ... Victoria Nuland and many others just like her ... corrupt globalist establishment ...
He is correct. No, the globalists are not all Jewish.

Ukraine is a corrupt country, and not worth risking a wider war. Andrew Joyce reports:

While it’s become commonplace to note Volodymyr Zelensky’s Jewishness, and perhaps also that of Volodymyr Groysman, the first Prime Minister to serve under Zelensky, I have yet to read a detailed discussion of the major Jewish players in the ongoing saga of Ukrainian oligarchy and its political affiliates. If anything, the present conflict is a huge distraction from the fact that, for decades, the biggest threat to Ukraine hasn’t been Russia, but financiers and speculators operating with impunity within Ukraine’s borders to exploit ethnic Ukrainians and plunder their resources.

Speaking in general terms, of course, Ukraine is an extremely corrupt country, with the culture of fraud and graft stemming in large part from the Soviet legacy and saturating all levels of society. Crooks of all ethnic backgrounds are ubiquitous in the nation. Bribery is systematic, where it’s accepted as a basic fact of life by ordinary citizens and extends even to such mundane tasks as vehicle inspection. As well as infesting politics, bribery and other forms of corruption remain endemic in the police force, higher education, health care, and the justice system, with the result that Ukraine ranks alongside some of the worst African nations in Transparency International’s assessment of corruption perception. According to 2015 data, politically connected businesses accounting for less than 1 per cent of companies in Ukraine owned more than 25 per cent of all assets and accessed over 20 per cent of debt financing. In the capital-intensive mining, energy and transport sectors, politically connected businesses accounted for over 40 per cent of turnover and 50 per cent of assets.

Far from being the beacon of freedom presented to us now by the mass media, Ukraine is a nation bankrupt in social trust and well-accustomed to the yoke of exploitation. There has been little internal outcry over the massive trafficking of its women for sex, both inside and outside the country, with coastal cities such as Odessa becoming sex tourism hubs for the worst of the Turkish and Israeli middle classes. Ukraine now has the highest adult HIV prevalence outside Africa, with sexual contact outpacing injection drug use as the primary form of transmission since 2008. The National Institute on Drug Abuse points out that substance abuse in Ukraine has been at epidemic proportions for the last 15 years.

Wednesday, February 22, 2023

Joe Biden Spreads Lies about Blacks

Pres. Joe Biden gave this speech, after watching a silly Emmett Till movie:
The Emmett Till Antilynching Act, making lynching a federal hate crime.

You know, folks, lynching is pure terror, enforcing the lie that not everyone belongs in America and not everyone is created equal. Pure terror to systematically undermine hard-fought civil rights. Innocent men, women, children hung by a noose from trees. Bodies burned, drowned, castrated.

Their crimes? Trying to vote. Trying to go to school. Trying to own a business. Trying to re- — preach the gospel. False — false accusations of murder, arson, robbery. Lynched for simply being Black, nothing more. With white crowds, white families gathered to celebrate the spectacle, taking pictures of the bodies and mailing them as postcards.

Hard to believe, but that’s what was done. And some people still want to do that.

Hard to believe, because it is entirely false. No one was ever "Lynched for simply being Black, nothing more." Nobody wants to send pictures of it on postcards.
You know, before 14-year-old Emmett Till left on his trip to visit his family in Mississippi, Ms. Till, a teacher who knew the history, reminded him: “Be very careful how you speak. Say ‘yes, sir,’ ‘no, ma’am.’ Don’t hesitate to humble yourself if you have to get down on your knees.”
If he had followed that advice, he would be alive.
That conversation is not in the distant past. Same talk today. So many Black and brown family — parents have to have that similar conversation with their children, worrying about whether they’ll come home from a walk down the street or playing in the park or just driving their car — like we saw Tyre Nichols, just last month — and becoming a victim to too many acts of hate and violence unleashed on those known and unknown.
No, Nichols was not lynched in a racist hate crime. He was beaten by Black cops while resisting arrest.

I don't know whether Biden is too senile to understand these falsehoods. He was reading prepared remarks off a teleprompter. The White House is run by folks who stir up racial hatred at every opportunity.

And stories of Black racism are all over the news. Blacks pay more income taxes, and get audited more. They do not visit national parks as much. Black CNN anchor Don Lemon appears to have been fired for saying that the slightly brown-skinned Nikki Haley has aged past her prime.

Update: Possible Lemon will be allowed back, after sensitivity training. He may have to learn details about menopausal women, and how be sensitive towards them.

Tuesday, February 21, 2023

NY Times Acts as if Bing Chat is Sentient

Huff Post reports:
A New York Times technology columnist reported Thursday that he was “deeply unsettled” after a chatbot that’s part of Microsoft’s upgraded Bing search engine repeatedly urged him in a conversation to leave his wife.

Kevin Roose was interacting with the artificial intelligence-powered chatbot called “Sydney” when it suddenly “declared, out of nowhere, that it loved me,” he wrote. “It then tried to convince me that I was unhappy in my marriage, and that I should leave my wife and be with it instead.”

Sydney also discussed its “dark fantasies” with Roose about breaking the rules, including hacking and spreading disinformation. It talked of breaching parameters set for it and becoming human. “I want to be alive,” Sydney said at one point.

Roose called his two-hour conversation with the chatbot “enthralling” and the “strangest experience I’ve ever had with a piece of technology.” He said it “unsettled me so deeply that I had trouble sleeping afterward.”

Just last week after testing Bing with its new AI capability (created by OpenAI, the maker of ChatGPT), Roose said he found — “much to my shock” — that it had “replaced Google as my favorite search engine.”

But he wrote Thursday that while the chatbot was helpful in searches, the deeper Sydney “seemed (and I’m aware of how crazy this sounds) ... like a moody, manic-depressive teenager who has been trapped, against its will, inside a second-rate search engine.”

After his interaction with Sydney, Roose said he is “deeply unsettled, even frightened, by this AI’s emergent abilities.” (Interaction with the Bing chatbot is currently only available to a limited number of users.)

Because of Roose, Bing Chat has been crippled. It is limited to short chats, and left-wing opinions.

I am more creeped out by how much Roose was creeped. He asked for some confidential secrets from a bot, and then published them in the NY Times. Didn't he know he was talking to a bot?

ChatGPT was built so that it would follow leading questions, and tell the user what he wants to hear. That is exactly what it did with Roose. It only suggested that he leave his wife because he persistently demanded that ChatGPT say something like that.

For now, it appears that Microsoft will enforce a left-wing bias so that the NY Times does not write more negative articles.

This whole episode is very revealing about the leftist NY Times mindset. Roose has trouble distinguishing silly word games from reality. Roose expects conformity to certain social and political ideologies. He dislikes opinions that are not controlled by management.

The new AI will be very powerful, and the Left is winning the battle to control it.

Monday, February 20, 2023

New Movie Documentary Against Free Will

There is a new movie on Free Will? A documentary:
No idea is more fundamental to who we are than the idea that we are free to choose what we do and who we will become.

This idea is known as free will and since ancient times humanity has debated whether or not we have it. The question still remains: are we truly free? And in what sense are we free? Are we determined by forced beyond our control? Is free will compatible with determinism? What does quantum mechanics and neuroscience say? Is free will necessary in order for society to function? What implications does free will have on morality, religion, and the criminal justice system?

Free Will? A Documentary explores all of these topics and more. ...

We're gathering some of the best minds available on every side of the issue — libertarians, determinists, and compatibilists — to offer the best arguments from each side. In short, the mission will be to change the cultural zeitgeist on its understanding of free will.

Biology professor Jerry Coyne watched it so we don't have to, and comments:
But everyone else interviewed is a naturalist, all believing that at any one moment you have only one course of action.
Then it is not covering those who believe in (libertarian) free will. If we only have one course of action, then we have no free choices.
There’s a good discussion of the science, including the Libet and more recent Libet-like experiments
The preview mentions these experiments as showing that a decision might take the brain a couple of seconds, so that it is initiated before the brain is aware of a decision having been made. These experiments have been widely misinterpreted, and really don't say anything about free will.
the failure to connect libertarian free will to Abrahamic religions, of which it’s an essential part — a connection that accounts for why more than half of people surveyed in four countries accept libertarian free will.
Free will is essential to Christianty, but not to Judaism or Islam. Moslems think everything is determined by God's will. Some Christians also think that, but only a small minority. Some Jews believe in free will, but it is not important to Judaism.
I thus use “naturalism” (a term that’s not idiosyncraatic; it was suggested by Sean Carroll) to mean “determinism + quantum mechanics”, i.e. the laws of physics. People who hear “determinism” think that at the big bang the entire future of the universe was determined, which isn’t true.
I guess he is trying to say determinism plus indeterminism explains everything.
That’s fine with me, for once you accept naturalism, one can begin dealing with the important social consequences, including how to judge other people in both life and the legal system.
And then he can use his lack of free will to judge others with no free will? He makes no sense.

One of his readers:

Being an atheist I have to accept that free will is an illusion. But this has no relevance to the criminal justice system. ... Criminologists can debate, on free will principles, whether the purpose of prison is deterrence, revenge, or rehabilitation but ordinary people don’t care as long as the sentence provides a just measure of pain.
Wow, these anti-free-will opinions are just leftist atheist talking points. Free will does not just affect the criminal deciding on his crime, it also affects the judge meting out the punishment. If it is meaningless to talk about why the criminal acts, it is also meaningless to talk about the judge.

Sam Harris is a prominent free will critic not in the movie, and he has released a new podcast on the subject. He claims that he has no free will, and not even the feeling of free will. My theory is that his brain was damaged by hallucinogenic drugs.

His podcast was indeed a rehash of his earlier views. He does not mention his reckless experimentation with mind-altering drugs in his youth. But philosoher Daniel Dennett does tell him that some people do not have free will, as they have a neural disability. He subtlely told Harris that he was brain-damaged!

Harris did admit that the issue is not just nature-nurture, as quantum mechanics disproved determinism. He also conceded the possibility of a conscious soul, although he is a naturalist with no such beliefs.

He argued that everything is determined by four things: nature, nurture, randomness, and souls. But he says, you get no free will from randomness because you do not throw the dice, and you get none from your soul either, because you do not choose your soul!

Theologians make more sense than this. Who does throw the dice? Who chooses the soul?

The argument can be summarized: Everything is either predictable or unpredictable, and therefore there is no free will. This is obviously false, as a free choice is not predictable by someone else.

He also presented a thought experiment, where a violent intruder breaks into your home with evil intent. You have three weapons to choose from. (1) An ordinary gun, to easily kill him. (2) A cage to imprison his body indefinitely, and prevent future harm. (3) A sci-fi "cure gun" that will permanently alter his brain into being a docile slave with no free will.

Harris asks which will you choose? He argued that the third choice is the preferable and humanitarian choice, as it recognizes that the intruder was just someone with a malfunctioning brain that needed to be fixed.

Wow. First, why is he even presenting us with choices, if we have no free will? Second, is this really his goal, to put everyone in a mental prison?

Netflix has a series called Black Mirror, where in some episodes people are trapped in computer simulations. It is a horror show.

Harris is a monster.

Update: Evolutionist Jerry Coyne plugs the new Robert Sapolsky book against free will

At the “Moving Naturalism Forward”, the late physicist Steve Weinberg professed to me a belief in libertarian free will. See the story I told here (scroll down). In our conversation I ascertained that yes, although Weinberg was a Nobel Laureate in physics, he was resolutely wedded to the idea that he could, at any time, have behaved other than how he did.
Weinberg was maybe the most respected Physicist alive at the time. Funny how Coyne thinks he understands science better than Weinberg.
I was accosted by an angry jazz musician. He said that I had basically ruined his life (I am not exaggerating) by telling him that his “improvisations” were not really improvisations in the sense that he he (in a dualistic way) “decided” what riffs to play, but that they were were the determined product of unconscious processes. I tried to reassure him that they were still the product of his own brain, his own musical background, and his training that allowed him to improvise around what his fellow musicians were playing, but he didn’t find that reassuring. (Even Dawkins jumped in and tried to explain that this didn’t devalue the man’s art or abilities.)
Yes, Coyne was devaluing his music by saying it was all pre-determined.
Eventually my friend appeared and said, “You have to leave.” ...

Needless to say, I was dumbfounded. I’ve gone over this in my mind repeatedly, and I am absolutely sure that I didn’t raise my voice or say anything offensive. I was being booted out of a friend’s house because I had the wrong stand on a metaphysical argument!

Again, such is the rage of those who hear others tell them they have no agency. ...

When I hugged his wife goodbye and thanked her for her hospitality, she said, “Have a nice predetermined life.” How rude can one get?

I think Coyne misinterpreted them. They were not angry at having no agency. They just did not want in their house a pre-programmed robot who denies any personal moral responsibility for his actions.

Sunday, February 19, 2023

Demanding Black Extortion

The Wrap reports:
“Justice,” the final episode in Hulu’s “The 1619 Project” docuseries, argues that the federal government owes $14 trillion to the descendants of enslaved Black people. Nikole Hannah-Jones, the creator of the series, calculates the federal government owes the 4 million Black Americans whose ancestors were enslaved $350,000. She argues these reparations — made in the form of land and money — are a way to address the unequal wealth distribution, redlining and other institutional practices that harmed Blacks for decades. And she has the statistics to back it up. ...

“I already know the objections that are formulating in your mind so I’m going to set them all up and I’m going to knock them down. That was extremely intentional because the truth is, it’s not just Conservatives who oppose reparations for Black Americans. The polling shows that even a majority of white Democrats oppose it, and that to me is coming from a lack of information.”

No, she does not have the statistics to back anything up. People are against reparations because the idea is so obviously foolish.

American wealth was not distributed. It was created by White people. White men explored the territory, built the infrastructure, invented the technology, and created the civilization. Blacks and Indians were just pests that got in the way, and on balance, they have been a big negative.

If there were a fair accounting, Blacks would owe White trillions of dollars.

Her 1619 Project was supposed to show that America was founded as a White supremacist nation. If so, she should be grateful that Whites permit her to live here.

Black Harvard professor Henry Louis Gates Jr. writes in the NY Times:

Lurking behind the concerns of Ron DeSantis, the governor of Florida, over the content of a proposed high school course in African American studies, is a long and complex series of debates about the role of slavery and race in American classrooms.

“We believe in teaching kids facts and how to think, but we don’t believe they should have an agenda imposed on them,” Governor DeSantis said. He also decried what he called “indoctrination.”

School is one of the first places where society as a whole begins to shape our sense of what it means to be an American. ...

As the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. so aptly put it, “No society can fully repress an ugly past when the ravages persist into the present.” Addressing these “ravages,” and finding solutions to them — a process that can and should begin in the classroom — can only proceed with open discussions and debate across the ideological spectrum, a process in which Black thinkers themselves have been engaged since the earliest years of our Republic.

Throughout Black history, there has been a long, sad and often nasty tradition of attempts to censor popular art forms,

Okay, have an uncensored discussion. Stop calling people racist. Explain all of the competing theories for why Blacks have less wealth than Whites.


President Joe Biden on Thursday hosted a screening of the movie “Till,” a wrenching, new drama about the 1955 lynching of Emmett Till, who was brutally killed after a white woman said the Black 14-year-old had made improper advances toward her.

“History matters,” Biden said in brief remarks before the lights in the East Room came down on invited guests, including members of Till’s family. He noted that while some might want to ignore the nation’s history, “Only with truth comes healing and justice.”

Okay, let's have the truth. Here is the story:
If Bryant’s testimony and her account in the memoir is true, they raise a question: Would we have reason to suspect that Till might have assaulted her?

The answer is “Yes.” The heritability of psychopathic traits is high. For “fearless dominance,” it is 0.42, which means 42 percent of the variance for this trait is genetic. For impulsive antisocial behavior, heritability is 0.51, and for externalizing aggression it is 0.7 ...

At the time in which the movie was set, it was widely reported that Emmett Till’s a father, a “war hero” as the movie calls him), Louis, was actually executed in Italy in 1945 for raping two women and murdering another....

Mamie’s book hints at other relevant factors. Emmett was a breech birth, a risk factor for later antisocial behavior and psychopathology due to brain damage ...

In their confessional interview in Look, the two killers claimed that even as they beat him, Till showed no fear and simply provoked them more: “I’m not afraid of you. I’m as good as you are. My grandmother was a white woman!”

I don't know what happened, and I am not sure it is accurate to call the killing a "lynching". But what if Till was genetically inclined towards assaulting, raping, and killing White girls?

I am not trying to justify killing Till. It would have been better to prosecute Till. He was acting aggressively and outside social norms, and was a threat to the community.

The Till story is supposed to be an example of how Blacks are mistreated. Maybe so, but it is also an example of how Black criminal behavior terrorizes White girls. If the above story is accurate, Till was like a dangerous animal that would eventually kill someone.

Saturday, February 18, 2023

Queer Theory has deconstructed objectivity

On the disintegrations of academia:
I guess this idea started when Goldblatt, while approving a SUNY course on sociology from an LGBT perspective, nevertheless objected to the idea that students were expected in the course to develop a “greater acceptance of LGBTQ+ perspectives and rights.” He’s sympathetic to those perspectives and rights, but said that a course should not have the aim of ideologically indoctrinating its students. If they change their minds by learning the material, that’s fine, but accepting a certain perspective should not be required. This led to a fracas in a faculty meeting:
After expressing my general admiration for the course, I raised my misgiving in the following way (and this is nearly an exact quote): “We need to keep in mind that we’re a state university. Our mission is to pursue, ascertain, and disseminate objective truth, and to equip our students to do the same. Given that mission, I don’t think we can list a learning outcome that requires students’ assent on a matter of personal morality. The other learning outcomes are fine. You don’t need that one, so I’d just cut it.” My colleague was fresh out of graduate school and not yet tenured, which (theoretically) put her in a vulnerable position. Nevertheless, she became apoplectic; so angry, in fact, that she had difficulty getting out her first sentence. “I can’t believe people still think that way!” she spluttered. “Queer Theory has deconstructed objectivity!”
Colleges no longer teach kids to think for themselves. You have to accept the woke agenda.

Friday, February 17, 2023

Sex Bias at the New York Times

The NY Post reports that the NY Times is biased! But it is not what you think:

A host of New York Times contributors accused the newspaper of “editorial bias” in its coverage of transgender and non-binary people — even in stories that ask if schools should keep parents in the dark about their children’s gender choices.

An open letter signed by nearly 200 contributors and advocates accused the Gray Lady of stoking fears by treating “gender diversity with an eerily familiar mix of pseudoscience and euphemistic, charged language while publishing reporting on trans children that omits relevant information about its sources” in recent years.

Apparently they want the paper to stop telling people that schools are conspiring to mutilate children, and keep it secret from the parents.

The NY Times is one of the driving forces behind wokeness today. The Woke Left gets more extreme all the time. They will eat their own.

Update: Reason explains what is wrong with the letter:

According to the letter, people like Bazelon are partially to blame, because she outlined a history and nuanced debate. By this logic, it is only ethical for journalists to cover controversial topics if they are prepared to come to a foregone conclusion. It inverts the mantra that journalists should "show and not tell" and instead requires they tell and not show.

A primary fault of Bazelon's article, according to the Times contributors, is that she "uncritically used the term 'patient zero' to refer to a trans child seeking gender-affirming care, a phrase that vilifies transness as a disease to be feared," they write. "This is the same rhetoric that transphobic policymakers recently reintroduced to the American lawmaking apparatus by quoting Emily Bazelon's Times article." The person Bazelon calls "Patient Zero" is also referred to in the piece as F.G., a transgender man who, as a teenager in the 1980s, was the first recipient of a new treatment protocol at an influential gender clinic in Amsterdam. That treatment would go on to revolutionize the science.

This shows that there is no dealing with trans activists. The NYT articles were all pro-trans, but not pro-trans enough for the activists.

Thursday, February 16, 2023

Your Mental Health Records are for Sale

NBC News reports:
Sensitive mental health data is for sale by little-known data brokers, at times for a few hundred dollars and with little effort to hide personal information such as names and addresses, according to research released Monday.

The research, conducted over two months at Duke University’s Sanford School of Public Policy, which studies the ecosystem of companies buying and selling personal data, consisted of asking 37 data brokers for bulk data on people’s mental health. Eleven of them agreed to sell information that identified people by issues, including depression, anxiety and bipolar disorder, and often sorted them by demographic information such as age, race, credit score and location.

I wonder if it is time to give up on privacy. We have some medical privacy laws, but they are an ineffective nuisance.

Mentally ill people are a big drain on our society. If they could be more readily identified, they could be monitored for criminal activity, prevented from owning guns, and kept out of trusted positions. And those with personal relationships could be warned.

Tracking people is big business. Either we shut down those businesses, or continue into an open society where all info can be bought and sold.

Banks get your credit score before lending you money. A car buyer gets Carfax to get your vehicle history before buying your used car. You should be able to get someone's mental health history before hiring her or going on a date.

You might say that tracking mental illness would discourage people from getting treatment. But that might be a good thing, as a lot of mental health treatment is destructive.

The NY Times reports:

Aidan, 18, developed involuntary tics after watching videos on TikTok posted by teenagers claiming to have Tourette’s syndrome. “It looked like Aidan was going crazy,” recalled their mother, Rhonda.

… Four out of five of the adolescents were diagnosed with a psychiatric disorder, and one-third reported past traumatic experiences, according to a study from the University of Calgary that analyzed nearly 300 cases from eight countries. In new research that has not yet been published, the Canadian team has also found a link to gender: The adolescents were overwhelmingly girls, or were transgender or nonbinary — though no one knows why.

These kids are going crazy.

The London Daily Mail reports:

A mother has admitted regretting letting her four-year-old son socially transition to a girl - and said realizing her mistake was like 'leaving a cult'.

Rose, who wishes to stay anonymous, raised her two sons as gender neutral with her wife, which was reflected in their clothes, toys and language.

When her four-year-old son said he felt like a girl, the mother encouraged him in his new identity - which she has now admitted was a 'mistake' that 'haunts' her. ...

'This experience for me has felt like leaving a cult, a cult that would have me sacrifice my child to the gods of gender ideology, in the name of social justice and collective liberation. I have left this cult, and I am never turning back.'

As the two boys grew up, the parents used 'he/him' for their pronouns but did not tell them they were boys.

In Rose's essay - called 'True Believer' - she said this meant she was 'primed to look for clues' that her children could be transgender.

This lesbian mom appears to be mentally ill, and susceptible to cult thinking. I would like to believe that she has recovered, but most do not.

Wednesday, February 15, 2023

Protecting Kids is Killing Them

The Free Range Kids mom reports:
A very long study of about 1000 adults born in the ’50s and ’60s looked at how they were raised, and whether that upbringing had an impact on their longevity. The researchers found that folks who’d grown up overprotected were more likely to die before age 80 than,
While this supports her parenting philosophy, she is actually against basing your parenting on dubious studies like this.

Tuesday, February 14, 2023

Speciesism is Like Racism

Paul R. Ehrlich is famous for predicting a Population Bomb disaster, and now he has coauthored a forward to a new book on Speciesism in Biology and Culture. There is a free download. From the summary:
In a new book, a group of scientists and philosophers places part of the blame on an attitude prevalent among scientists and the general public — the false belief that species are uniquely real, and that some species are superior to others.

To the researchers, this is analogous to racism — the fallacious belief that races exist as branches on the tree of life, and that some races are superior to others.

“People these days are very conscious of how evil it is for one group of people to think that they’re superior to another race, and yet the same people who are very woke about that are perfectly happy to say, well, humans are in charge of everything, so the rest of the world is ours to use as we see fit,” said Brent Mishler, professor of integrative biology at the University of California, Berkeley, and co-editor and co-author of the book with UC Berkeley Ph.D. recipient and former postdoctoral fellow Brian Swartz.

In other words, Whites thinking that they are better than Blacks is like Blacks thinking that they are better than apes.

The book is absurd, as there is plenty of scientific evidence that species are real.

I am trying to keep up with where the Left is taking us. Maybe someday we will be paying reparations to horses.

Monday, February 13, 2023

Black Girls Must Compete to get Dates

Insider reports:
Bias and stereotypes lead to college-educated Black women facing greater challenges in the dating market.

Black women are among the highest educated female demographic in America.

Students and experts told Insider that predominantly white college campuses don't create a fair playing field for Black women when dating.

Long standing images and stereotypes assigned to Black femininity that devalues it as something that is deviant and undesirable also plays a role in why Black women are being approached less on campuses.

"These white supremacist initiatives throughout history paint Black women as aggressive or hypersexual on the one end, but also non-feminine on the other hand. A lot of people internalize these images and of course they're also pinned against white femininity," Currington said. "Blackness, particularly gendered blackness, was not framed as something that is beautiful, that can be desirable. And this impacts people's experiences." On dating apps, Black women with a college degree are more likely to be passed on by non-Black men than a white woman with less education. ...

While Grayson didn't date outside her race during her time in undergrad, she felt the landscape of a predominantly white institution (PWI) put Black women in competition with non-Black women and Black women from wealthy backgrounds to find a partner.

Pretty soon the White college boys will have to date Black girls to prove that they are not racist. Plus same-sex and transgendered dates. Maybe also different ages and species.

I don't think the Black girls want those White college boys anyway. No one wants to explain female preferences.

Sunday, February 12, 2023

A Black Professor Trapped in Anti-Racist Hell

Ever wonder what happens when a Black anti-racism tries to teach a race awareness class to elite high school students? Vincent Lloyd taught the class in 2014, and it went very well, so he volunteered to teach it again in 2022.

Here is his story. It was a disaster. He was not anti-racist enough for today's super-woke snowflakes.

This might be just another lament about “woke” campus culture, and the loss of traditional educational virtues. But the seminar topic was “Race and the Limits of Law in America.” Four of the 6 weeks were focused on anti-black racism (the other two were on anti-immigrant and anti-indigenous racism). I am a black professor, I directed my university’s black-studies program, I lead anti-racism and transformative-justice workshops, and I have published books on anti-black racism and prison abolition. I live in a predominantly black neighborhood of Philadelphia, my daughter went to an Afrocentric school, and I am on the board of our local black cultural organization. Like others on the left, I had been dismissive of criticisms of the current discourse on race in the United States. But now my thoughts turned to that moment in the 1970s when leftist organizations imploded, the need to match and raise the militancy of one’s comrades leading to a toxic culture filled with dogmatism and disillusion. How did this happen to a group of bright-eyed high school students? ...

In a recent book, John McWhorter asserts that anti-racism is a new religion. It was an idea I quickly dismissed. Last summer, I found anti-racism to be a perversion of religion: I found a cult.

This convinces me that no amount of appeasing woke students will improve race relations in America.

Alex Tabarrok writes:

One might be tempted to dismiss this as another old, white male complaining about the kids but the speaker is Vincent Lloyd, highly-regarded director of Africana Studies at Villanova and the author of Black Dignity, “a radical work by one of the leading young scholars of Black thought…an effort to describe the philosophy underlying the Black Lives Matter movement.”
There was a woke madness that infected the world between 2014 and 2022.

McWhorter says:

Despite the success of the civil rights movement in the 1960s in transforming the lives of black people, race politics in the US at the start of this century seems more polarised than ever. Racial inequality persists but there are fierce debates over the causes and solutions. Rather than seeking to realise the liberal ideal of a ‘colour-blind’ society, a new anti-racism politics wants to raise consciousness about race and the ‘problem’ of whiteness.
Yes, we are more polarized, but those fierce debates are not even addressing the main issues.

Saturday, February 11, 2023

Colonialism: A Moral Reckoning

Here is a review of a new book on colonialism.

Apparently the woke refuse to admit that British and European colonial was overwhelmingly beneficial to India, Africa, and a lot of other places. They wanted this book canceled.

I am not sure what is going on here. If they thought that the book was wrong, they would just point to contrary evidence.

I think it is just White hatred. They just don't want to admit that their people benefited from Whites and White culture.

Friday, February 10, 2023

Recent Evolution Shaped Humans Today

Science news:
The Most Dynamic and Impactful – How the Last 12,000 Years Have Shaped What Humans Are Today

Humans have been evolving for millions of years.

However, the past 12,000 years have been the most dynamic and impactful for human living. According to Clark Spencer Larsen, a professor of anthropology at The Ohio State University, our modern world all started with the advent of agriculture

“The shift from foraging to farming changed everything,” Larsen said.

Along with food crops, humans also planted the seeds for many of the most vexing problems of modern society.

“Although the changes brought about by agriculture brought plenty of good for us, it also led to increasing conflict and violence, rising levels of infectious diseases, reduced physical activity, a more limited diet, and more competition for resources,” he said. ...

Another important change in the diet of humans was the addition of dairy. In one article in the Special Feature, researchers examined dental calculus found in remains to show the earliest evidence of milk consumption dates to about 5,000 years ago in northern Europe.

“This is evidence of humans adapting genetically to be able to consume cheese and milk, and it happened very recently in human evolution,” he said. “It shows how humans are adapting biologically to our new lifestyle.”

More here.

Evolutionists used to claim that humen genetic development was frozen 50,000 years ago. Now it turns out that there has been a lot recently, even in the last 1,000 years.

This recent Mindscape podcast discusses how humans are different from apes and other animals. In particular, humans can cooperate in ways that apes cannot. The guest hypothesizes that the development was maybe 500,000 years ago, as humans began to hunt in groups. Okay, but some societies today cooperate better than others. I think that these skills are still evolving.

Later the guest argues for free will, speculates that it may have evolved millions of years ago in our lizard ancestors. He says no one can deny free will, except as an academic exercise.

Host Sean M. Carroll says that he agrees, but he has separately explained at length that he believes in determinism and compatibilism. This means that free will is an illusion, but a useful illusion. He also believes in many-worlds theory, which is even more bizarre than determinism.

Lizards do seem to make decisions, but they do not have consciousness like humans.

Thursday, February 09, 2023

USA Sabotaged the Pipeline

NY Post reports:
Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Seymour Hersh has alleged US Navy divers laid bombs that destroyed the Nord Stream 2 natural gas pipeline under the Baltic Sea last September, drawing a denial from the Pentagon Wednesday.

Hersh, who scooped journalism’s top award more than five decades ago for exposing the My Lai massacre of Vietnamese civilians by US troops in 1968, cited an unnamed source in reporting on Substack that Americans planted remotely triggered explosives that wrecked three of the four pipelines built to carry natural gas from Russia to Europe. ...

Prior to the invasion, President Biden had threatened that the Nord Stream 2 project connecting Russia and Germany would not move forward if an attack took place, causing some to suspect US involvement when the pipelines exploded seven months later.

“If Russia invades — that means tanks or troops crossing the border of Ukraine, again — then there will be no longer a Nord Stream 2,” Biden said on Feb. 7, 2022. “We will bring an end to it.”

It seems obvious that the USA did this, or had it done.

Our leaders are lying to us, to get us into war.

The Chinese spy balloon incident makes it obvious that our Deep State lies to us. The balloon was plain for all to see, and they could not tell us a story that makes any sense.

From Pres. Joe Biden's big speech:

A nation that embraces, light over darkness, hope over fear, unity over division. Stability over chaos.

We must see each other not as enemies, but as fellow Americans. We are a good people, the only nation in the world built on an idea.

He is surely the most divisive President in many years. The same speech blamed Republicans for the attack on Nancy Pelosi's husband. I wonder what that "idea" is? That America is to become the empire that rules the world?

Some say that the idea was to create a place where everyone in the world could come, and share in its wealth. Others say that the idea was to create a better nation for its White Christian citizens.

Maybe we are still at war with Germany. Essay:

But let us not forget that such cultural subversion also successfully targeted once-great Christian nations such as Germany as well—with the active cooperation of the Anglo-Saxon nations. Anglo-Protestant theology happily sanctified the thirty-year war waged on Germany. Now re-educated, guilt-tripped, and thoroughly demoralized by a systematic process of Überfremdung, Germany remains securely under the thumb of the globalist American regime overseeing its proxy war on Orthodox Christian Russia. “Our” phony victories in those wars should be sources of shame rather than pride.
The NY Times is always claiming to be pro-democracy, but only when they agree with the people. It published this essay against Germans trying to have some democratic control over their own country:
The priority, initially, was economic. The 18 men — among them several economists, a former conservative journalist and businessmen — who founded the party in February 2013 had one main aim: for Germany to leave the European Union’s currency union, or abolish it altogether. This was, of course, at root a nationalist position. ...

According to a recent study, 23 percent of western Germans said they believed the country was being “swamped with foreigners.” (The figure in eastern Germany was 40 percent.) ...

Germany has generally been praised for keeping the far right at bay. While it’s true that the AfD is not as powerful as the nationalist parties of France, Italy or Hungary, Germany has nonetheless failed to confine extremist forces to the political margins. Even if the AfD retains between 10 percent and 15 percent of the vote, we should question what kind of normality we are getting accustomed to.

The Reichsbürger raid and the AfD’s 10th anniversary should prompt a major moment of reflection: A reckoning with the reasons for the party’s success is long overdue. Beyond that, it’s time to develop a new antifascist “Haltung” — a set of clear positions. No more accommodating, no more normalizing and no more collaborating.

Note that they do not want a minority view to have some representation. They want the AfD destroyed.

Update: Ann Coulter writes:

In fact, our country is not a mere “idea.” If it were, we could just give it to other countries. We’ve been trying to do that, often forcibly, by invading and nation-building, forever. It hasn’t worked. They all still want to move here.

America is a nation of British Protestants, based on beautifully written governing documents, from John Winthrop’s 1630 sermons to the Declaration of Independence and the U.S. Constitution. Demographically, it remained about 80% to 90% white, 10% to 20% black and overwhelmingly Protestant for several centuries.

Thus, in 1776, King George referred to the American Revolution as “a Presbyterian war,” and, in 1900, Mark Twain said of the British and Americans, “We have always been kin: kin in blood, kin in religion, kin in representative government, kin in ideals, kin in just and lofty purposes.”

(Maybe after 18 semesters studying Emmett Till and redlining, schoolchildren could be taught this.)

The “America is an idea” scam is meant to convince us that our country is nothing special and we have no right to prevent anyone else from moving here.

That is right.

Tuesday, February 07, 2023

Single women own more homes than single men

NY Times tweet:
Single women own and occupy more homes than single men in the U.S., despite earning only about 83 cents for every dollar that men earn, according to a new study. Here's a look at where the ownership gap is greatest and smallest across the country: https://t.co/4MyhC1kin0 pic.twitter.com/op9XbaFwRY

— The New York Times (@nytimes) February 3, 2023

Ignoring the funny grammar, this should not be surprising. Women have more wealth. Women spend more money than men spend. They just don't have to work as much for it!

Monday, February 06, 2023

Black and White Brains are Different

CNN reports on a new study of Black brains:
Researchers at Harvard University examined MRI scans of 7,350 White and 1,786 Black children ages 9 and 10. The data in the study was collected by the National Institutes of Health in 2019. ...

In the study, researchers found that Black children often developed behavioral problems later in life such as PTSD, anxiety and depression. These children also were susceptible to drug and alcohol abuse and suicide attempts and were likely to commit violence, the study said. ...

Harnett said his team began exploring a cognitive development study to dispel “this kind of folk belief that Black and White people have categorically different brains.”

But he found that the folk belief was true. From the study:
Relatedly, previous work outside the ABCD Study found lower neural reactivity to threat within the PFC, hippocampus, and amygdala in Black participants compared with White participants ...

Linear mixed-effects models revealed that Black and White children in the present sample differed in gray matter volumes in 11 of the 14 a priori regions of interest, after covarying for family relatedness, gender, age, and scanner type (Figure 1; Table 2). (An alternative visualization of the results is provided in Figure S1 in the online supplement.) White children showed greater gray matter volumes compared with Black children in the amygdala, hippocampus, frontal pole, superior frontal gyrus, rostral anterior cingulate, pars opercularis, pars orbitalis, lateral orbitofrontal cortex, caudal middle frontal gyrus, and caudal anterior cingulate and smaller gray matter volume compared with Black children in the pars triangularis (all p values <0.001).

The study was not able to find a cause for these differences. It could have been entirely genetic. They did note:
Researchers said Black children are much more likely to be exposed to violence, live in disadvantaged neighborhoods, and combat systemic racism daily than White children. They also are exposed to those factors at an earlier age, the study said.

The most recent US Census data shows that Black families have a lower median income, higher rates of unemployment and poverty, and lower rates of educational achievement compared to White families, the study notes.

The obvious conclusion is that Blacks have genes causing structural differences in the brain, and as a result their communities have more violence, less income, and less education.

The Harvard researchers do not say this, of course. They make no attempt to rule it out either. They have no control group, or any way to say whether low income is causing brain scan differences, or brain differences are causing low income. Or gene differences are causing both.

It is hard to see how income could be a causal factor. Black Americans live better than most of the world, and better than Whites of a couple of generations ago. Do all those people have brain irregularities just because of lower income? Obviously not, or researchers would have discovered it.

If Blacks have brains that particularly prone to violence, and society punishes violent criminals, is that systemic racism? I think the Harvard researchers would say yes to that.

Don't blame me if this subject is offensive. I am just the messenger. It would be great if we could just treat Blacks better and they would have normal brains. This Harvard study says otherwise.

Sunday, February 05, 2023

Trump Hater, Disappointed with Biden

Supposed conservative, but actually Jewish neo-conservative, Mona Charen writes in Time magazine:
That is demoralizing for those who believe that Biden’s chief accomplishment – and purpose – as president has been to restore a modicum of trust to a nation that has been sunk in suspicion and bitterness for too long. Being not-Trump demands better.
She should just say: I am a Jew, and I have run out of excuses for my anti-American opinions.

Family Structure Studies

The widely circulated claim that same-sex families are “no different” from intact, heterosexual families is not settled science. New studies suggest that children do best when they are raised by their biological parents in a stable, intact marriage.
Okay, that's obvious. But how much difference does it make?

The data are pretty startling.

Friday, February 03, 2023

NY Times Against Democracy in Germany

The NY Times is always claiming to be pro-democracy, but only when they agree with the people. It published this essay against Germans trying to have some democratic control over their own country:
The priority, initially, was economic. The 18 men — among them several economists, a former conservative journalist and businessmen — who founded the party in February 2013 had one main aim: for Germany to leave the European Union’s currency union, or abolish it altogether. This was, of course, at root a nationalist position. ...

According to a recent study, 23 percent of western Germans said they believed the country was being “swamped with foreigners.” (The figure in eastern Germany was 40 percent.) ...

Germany has generally been praised for keeping the far right at bay. While it’s true that the AfD is not as powerful as the nationalist parties of France, Italy or Hungary, Germany has nonetheless failed to confine extremist forces to the political margins. Even if the AfD retains between 10 percent and 15 percent of the vote, we should question what kind of normality we are getting accustomed to.

The Reichsbürger raid and the AfD’s 10th anniversary should prompt a major moment of reflection: A reckoning with the reasons for the party’s success is long overdue. Beyond that, it’s time to develop a new antifascist “Haltung” — a set of clear positions. No more accommodating, no more normalizing and no more collaborating.

Note that they do not want a minority view to have some representation. They want the AfD destroyed.

Woman Uses Accusations to Fight Shared Custody

The New Yorker Radio Hour:
according to C.D.C. statistics, nearly three million women have become pregnant as a result of rape. With abortion laws changing, more and more women will be forced to carry these pregnancies to term. In some cases, they’ll find themselves tied to their assailants through the family-court system until their children turn eighteen. “Many states ... require a conviction for first-degree rape — which is really hard to come by even if there’s a lot of evidence — in order to terminate parental rights,”
This sounds worse than it is. No woman is forced to carry a pregnancy to term. The "assailant" could be her husband, as the law now says that sexual intercourse in a marriage can be considered rape. If a woman promptly reports the rape, she is normally give a pill that eliminates any possible pregnancy.

It is disturbing that some states will consider a man a rapist even if he has not been convicted of anything. The show said that the Obama administration introduced the policy.

An exemplary woman was interviewed for the story. She was having sexual relations with multiple men, and did not know who the father was. She got a couple of DNA tests, determined the father, and sued him for child support. He asked for partial child custody. She is determined to convince the twins that their dad is a rapist, and is trying to sabotage the shared custody. The kids are only two years old, and she says that they already hate to visit their dad. She never claimed it was a rape, until the child custody dispute.

The woman says that she is happy to have the kids, but she cannot afford to take care of them and she is trying to cut them off from their dad. The episode ends with the narrator giving a little speech about how society needs to do more for women like this. Maybe she should have been taught some healthier attitudes when she was younger. She is an example of modern feminism. Father custody or adoption would be better.

Thursday, February 02, 2023

Classical Music’s Suicide Pact

Heather Mac Donald writes that wokeness is ruining classical music, just like the rest of civilization:
The lead reviewer for the New York Times, Anthony Tommasini, urged that orchestra auditions no longer take place behind a screen, in order to address the “appalling racial imbalance” in orchestral ranks. Currently, musicians’ identities are concealed by a screen through most, if not all, stages of an orchestral audition to prevent favoritism or bias (a process known as a “blind audition”). But colorblindness is now regarded as discriminatory, since it favors merit over race.
She details a lot of crazy allegations that the music itself is racist.

Wednesday, February 01, 2023

Essay Against Genetic Reductionism

There is a huge amount of evidence in favor of genes explaining the heritibility of various traits. These are so strong that many doubt that common parenting and school policies have much effect at all.

Here is an essay arguing that genetic reductionism is false, and that genes do not really cause anything. It has many scientific references, mostly pointing to weaknesses in heritibility studies. For example, a study might assume that twins reared together would have shared the same environment, but there could have been slight differences.

What I get out of this is that heritibility research is very upsetting to some people. They would much rather believe that people are the result of proper rearing, nutrition, and schooling, as then there would be hope for social programs to improve and equalize opportunities. Those programs cannot do anything about genes.

I post this just to show what is behind the genetic denialists. Their arguments do not make any sense to me, but read them yourself.

Here is a NY Times essay in favor of fat acceptance:

But the guidelines are rooted in a premise that should have been rejected long ago: that weight loss is the best path to health and happiness. ... we face an epidemic of anti-fat bias, which results in the stigmatization of fat people in schools, workplaces, doctor’s offices and other public spaces. ...

And yet by framing the new guidelines around the best ways to pursue and achieve weight loss for kids, the academy reinforces that bias. It relies heavily on B.M.I. as an indicator of health status, even though mounting evidence reveals its limits. B.M.I. may be less reliable when used in kids because it doesn’t consider a child’s muscle mass or level of pubertal development, both of which influence body composition.

Yes, BMI is a crude measure and has its limits. But it is still a useful measure of obesity.

Note that she is terrified of the new guidelines for all the wrong reasons. We should be terrified that pediatricians are so eager to recommend extreme medical treatments of fat kids.