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Report Claims Men More Intelligent Than Women

wilgamesh Re:Typical Slashdot Sophistry (1523 comments)

well, yes, i have in fact dug deeply into the literature of these studies, looking at statistical effects and the idea of using principal component analysis to measure intelligence. this is the i.q. field, a lot of crud couched in statistical language.

so when i call it crud, it's through a lot of careful thought and research.

also, spend some time reading and learning instead of back-reacting to slashdot stories. i raised the polar bear example as a ridiculous counterexample to a ridiculous and untestable proposal that the harsh environment selected for intelligence. your serious rebuttal to the stupid polar bear example is, in short, weak. you raise these points couched in scientific language, by pointing to 'complex social hiearchies' which means that intelligence must be a target for selection pressure. this would be the sophistry that i'm angry about.

there is no question that genetics manifests as testable effects, that people are different. it would be foolish to imply otherwise. but there's a difference between a serious attempt to study these proposals, and non-serious, non-scientific ones like dr. flynn's, and i'm sad to say, like your arguments, about race and biology. who is the sophist who is so willing to swallow these stories whole without criticism?

what do i mean? for example, your last point regarding black athletes being better than asian ones as 'accepted', is similar crud- why do you think this fact is generally accepted? i don't accept it. where are you getting this? is it because sports is dominated by black athletes, and accountants are all white? therefore black people have genetic athletic ability? do you really believe occupational placement is a direct causal result of racial accounting and athletic ability?

i also raised the issue of what is I.Q.: a "battery of tests" does not prove that i.q. exists. in the same way that testable contractions of moving objects in the aether theory of mechanics doesn't prove that the aether is real. on the contrary, i.q. tests are going to be circular- one defines the i.q. to be consistent with the population, and then uses that to draw conclusions about the tested population.

there was a good post by something regarding the problem of testing something across races- explaining things, when these tests are constructed by normalizing to some single population.

this is sophistry- to use persuasive arguments without careful reasoned criticism.

more than 9 years ago


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