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Biases and Political Beliefs

2150 words

The study of political bias is very important. Once the source of what motivates political bias—which no doubt would translate to other facets of life—is found, individual action can be taken to minimize any future bias. Two recent studies found that contrary to other studies showing that conservatives are more biased than liberals, both groups were equally as biased.

Everyone is biased—even physicians (Cain and Detsky, 2008). When beliefs we hold to be true are questioned, we do anything we can to shield ourselves from conflicting information. Numerous studies have looked into biases in politics, with some studies showing that conservatives are more likely to be biased towards their views more than liberals. However, recent research has shown that this is not true.

Frimer, Skitka, and Motyl, (2017) showed there were similar motives to shield one’s self from contradictory information. Hearing opposite viewpoints—especially for staunch conservatives and liberals—clearly leads to them doing anything possible to, in their heads, defend their dearly held beliefs. In four studies (1: people would forgo the chance to win money if they didn’t have to hear the opposite sides’ opinions on the same-sex marriage debate; 2: thinking back to the 2012 election; 3: upcoming elections in the US and Canada; “a range of other Culture War Issues” (Frimer, Skitka, and Motyle, 2017); and 4: both groups reported similar diversions towards hearing the opposite group’s beliefs), both groups reported that hearing the other side’s beliefs would induce cognitive dissonance (Frimer, Skitka, and Motyle, 2017). They meta-analyzed all of their studies and still found that both groups would “rather remain in their ideological bubbles”.

Ditto et al (2017) also had similar findings. They meta-analyzed 41 studies with over 12,000 participants, testing two hypotheses: 1) conservatives would be more biased than liberals and 2) there would be equal amounts of bias. They discovered that the correlation for partisan bias was “robust”, with a correlation of .254. They showed that “liberals (r = .248) and conservatives (r = .247) showed nearly identical levels of bias across studies” (Ditto et al, 2017).

These two studies show what we know is true: it’s extremely hard/damn near impossible to change one’s view. Someone can be dead wrong, yet attempt to gather up whatever kind of data they possibly can to shield themselves from the truth.

This all comes down to one thing: the backfire effect. When we are presented with contradictory information, we immediately reject it. Everyone is affected by this bias. One study showed that corrections frequently failed to correct political misconceptions, with these attempted corrections actually doing the opposite, people increased their misconception of the group in question (Nyhan and Riefler, 2010). The thing is, people lack the knowledge about political matters which then affects their opinions. These studies show why it’s next to impossible to change one’s view in regards to anything, especially political matters.

New York University’s Professor of Ethical Leadership and social psychologist with a specialty in morality Jonathan Haidt also talks about partisan bias in his outstanding book on religion and politics The Righteous Mind: Why Good People are Divided by Politics and Religion (Haidt, 2013). This book is outstanding and I highly recommend it. I’ve written about some of his thoughts in his book, his theory on the evolution of morality is very well argued. Moral reasoning is just a post-hoc search for reasons to justify the judgments that people have already made. When asked why people are so averse to questions they find morally wrong, they cannot give good reasons to why they find the scenarios morally wrong (Haidt, 2001). More specifically, people couldn’t say why it was morally wrong to have sex with a sibling even though they were told that they used birth control and both enjoyed the act, suffering no emotional damage. This is direct evidence for Haidt’s ‘wag-the-dog’ illusion.

Haidt (2001: 13) writes:

 If moral reasoning is generally a post-hoc construction intended to justify automatic moral intuitions, then our moral life is plagued by two illusions. The first illusion can be called the “wag-the-dog” illusion: we believe that our own moral judgment (the dog) is driven by our own moral reasoning (the tail). The second illusion can be called the “wag-the-otherdog’s-tail” illusion: in a moral argument, we expect the successful rebuttal of an opponent’s arguments to change the opponent’s mind. Such a belief is like thinking that forcing a dog’s tail to wag by moving it with your hand should make the dog happy.

Except the opponent’s mind is never changed. People always search for things to affirm their worldviews.

In his book, Haidt cites a study done on 14 liberals and conservatives who were stuck into an fMRI machine to scan their brains when shown 18 slides to see how their brain changed when viewing them (Weston et al, 2006). The first of which slide one set was George W. Bush praiding Ken Lay, the CEO of Enron. After, they were shown a slide in which the former President avoided mentioning Lay’s name. “At this point, Republicans were squirming” (Haidt, 2013: 101). Then they were finally shown a slide that said that Bush “felt betrayed” by the CEO’s actions and was shocked to find out that he was corrupt. There was a set of similar slides showing similar contradictory statements from John Kerry. The researchers had engineered situations that made the individual uncomfortable when shown their candidate contradicted themselves, while at the same time not showing any signs of being uncomfortable when it was shown their ideological opposite was caught being a hypocrite (Haidt, 2013: 101).

This study shows that emotional and intuitive processes are the causes for such extreme biases, with one only employing reasoning when it supports their own conclusions. Weston et al (2006) saw that when the individuals looked at the final slides, they had a sense of ‘escape’ and ‘release’. They cite further studies showing that this sense of escape and release is associated with the release of dopamine in the nucleus accumbens and dorsal striatum in other animals (Weston et al, 2006). So the subjects experienced this small hit of dopamine when they saw the final slide that showed everything was “OK”. If this is true, then this explains why we engage in these ‘addictive behaviors’—believing things with such conviction, even when shown contradictory information.

Like rats that cannot stop pressing a button, partisans may be simply unable to stop believing weird things. The partisan brain has been reinforced so many times for performing mental contortions that free it from unwanted beliefs. Even partisanship may be literally addictive. (Haidt, 2013: 103)

Haidt has also been covering the recent University protests that have been occurring around the country. About fifty years ago, a judge predicted the political turmoil we see in Universities today, writing:

No one can be expected to accept an inferior status willingly. The black students, unable to compete on even terms in the study of law, inevitably will seek other means to achieve recognition and self-expression. This is likely to take two forms. First, agitation to change the environment from one in which they are unable to compete to one in which they can. Demands will be made for elimination of competition, reduction in standards of performance, adoption of courses of study which do not require intensive legal analysis, and recognition for academic credit of sociological activities which have only an indirect relationship to legal training. Second, it seems probable that this group will seek personal satisfaction and public recognition by aggressive conduct, which, although ostensibly directed at external injustices and problems, will in fact be primarily motivated by the psychological needs of the members of the group to overcome feelings of inferiority caused by lack of success in their studies. Since the common denominator of the group of students with lower qualifications is one of race this aggressive expression will undoubtedly take the form of racial demands–the employment of faculty on the basis of race, a marking system based on race, the establishment of a black curriculum and a black law journal, an increase in black financial aid, and a rule against expulsion of black students who fail to satisfy minimum academic standards.

This seems to have come true today, seeing as political diversity has decreased in psychology, for instance, in the past fifty years (Duarte et al, 2015). In America, they found that 58-66 percent of social science professors identified as liberals, whereas only 5-8 percent identified as conservatives. Self-identified Democrats also outnumbered Conservatives by almost 8 to 1. Other researchers found that 52 to 77 percent of humanities professors were liberal with only 4-8 percent identifying as Conservative, for a ratio of about 5 to 1, favoring liberals. Finally, 84 percent of psychologists identified as liberal, with only 8 percent identifying as conservative for a 10.5 to 1 ratio (Duarte et al, 2015). However, this skew has only existed for about fifty years. When our institutions show this heavy skew in political beliefs, self-affirming, self-fulfilling prophecies will affect the quality of what is taught to students which will have a negative effect on the type of education received. 

Finally, when talking about political biases, one cannot go without mentioning Stephen Jay Gould. Although I’ve come to love his work on evolutionary theory, he was horribly wrong on human differences and let his motivations, biases and political views cloud his judgement and drive him to be grossly dishonest in his posthumous attacks of a man long dead who could no longer defend himself in one Samuel Morton, which first appeared in 1978. This culminated in his widely acclaimed (and, as fas as I can tell, still given to college students to read) book Mismeasure of Man (Gould, 1981). In the book, he attacked Morton for being biased in his measurements of his skull collection. However, in 2011, an anthropology team lead by Jason Lewis remeasured Morton’s skulls and found that Morton was not biased and his measurements were correct (Lewis et al, 2011). Gould was the one who ended up showing the huge bias that he accused Morton of and, ironically for Gould, he was the case study in avoiding bias in scholarship and science, not Morton.

However, as is usually the case, long debates such as this are not so easily settled. Philosopher Michael Weisberg (Weisberg, 2014) argued that Gould’s arguments against Morton were sound and that “Although Gould made some errors and overstated his case in a number of places, he provided prima facie evidence, as yet unrefuted, that Morton did indeed mismeasure his skulls in ways that conformed to 19th century racial biases.” Further, Kaplan, Pigliucci and Banta (2015) argue that Gould’s problem with Morton’s measurements came down to how the measurements should have been done (lead shot or seed). They contend that many of Lewis et al’s (2011) claims against Gould were “misleading” and “had no relevance to Gould’s published analysis.” They also argue that both Gould’s and Morton’s methods (inclusion/exclusion of skulls, how to compute averages, etc) were “inappropriate”. Nevertheless, the point is, this debate seems to be far from over and I await the next chapter. Whatever the case may be, Gould vs. Morton is a perfect case of politics and bias in science.

Everyone is biased. Researchers, physicians, normal everyday people, etc. But where we become most biased is when politics comes into play. To become better, well-rounded people with a myriad of knowledge, we need to listen to other’s viewpoints without immediately rejecting them. But, first, we must recognize the cognitive bias and attempt to correct it. Political differences begin in the brain and then are shaped by experience. These political differences then lead to feelings of disgust when hearing of the views of the ‘opposite team’. Both sides of the political spectrum are equally as biased, contrary to each groups’ perception of this particular issue. There are differences in the brain between Conservatives and Liberals, and when they see their ‘enemy’ engage in contradictory behavior they get joy, whereas when they see their guy engage in the same contradictory behavior they show disgust.

The long debate on Morton’s skulls that’s been raging for over forty years is the perfect look into how politics, motivation, and bias comes into effect in science, no matter which camp ultimately ends up being right (I’m in the Morton camp, obviously). Studying the causes and effects of why we have such strong biases can lead to a better understanding of the causes of these underlying defense mechanisms—the causes of the backfire effect and similar cognitive biases. Everyone and anyone—from the scientist to the layman—should always let what the facts say guide their points of view and not their emotions.

When you are studying any matter, or considering any philosophy, ask yourself only what are the facts and what is the truth that the facts bear out. Never let yourself be diverted either by what you wish to believe, or by what you think would have beneficent social effects if it were believed. But look only, and solely, at what are the facts. That is the intellectual thing that I should wish to say.Bertrand Russel, 1959

Stockholm 5000 BC

by Scott Jameson

350 words

Stockholm Syndrome is when you identify with people who capture and, in some cases, abuse you. I’ve heard two pretty good explanations for this phenomenon. One is that female mammals like powerful male mammals. Makes sense. The other is that abducted people are attempting to maximize their own chances of survival, and perhaps those of any children they already have. Also makes sense. Let me present a third.

Intra-female competition. Imagine that a woman from tribe B is forcibly inducted into tribe A. The women from tribe A know all of the customs of tribe A, speak the language and so on, and they have known the men from tribe A since childhood. All else equal, what does the woman from tribe B have going for her- novelty, perhaps? That’ll wear off pretty quick, likely faster than it takes for her to get familiarized with her new culture. How can she possibly compensate? How can she compete with the women from tribe A for quantity and social status of offspring?

Lots and lots of asabiyah. If she were that much more devoted to her captors, to their religion, and so on, the men may admire her, or perhaps begin to consider her truly one of “their own,” thereby reducing the disadvantage by comparison to the women from tribe A.

All of these line up with the common belief- which I cannot seem to find strong evidence for or against, but here’s a study that mentions a sample of 21 Stockholm cases wherein 18 were women– that women tend to “suffer” from Stockholm Syndrome more often than men.

It’s not a disease in the Darwinian sense, it’s a behavioral response mechanism. The more accurate term is Capture Bonding.

Any one of these three hypotheses may explain it, or perhaps any combination of the three, or maybe something else. You would have to determine selective pressures operating on women currently in a situation wherein capture bonding is common, for example determining which behaviors enabled one war bride to have more children than another. Anybody up for some field work with Boko Haram?

The Threat of Increasing Diversity: Why Many White Americans Supported Trump in the 2016 Presidential Election

3250 words

Tl;dr: White Americans exposed to more diversity are more likely to support Trump, anti-PC speech and anti-immigration policies while showing less support and positivity towards Democratic candidates. In the racial shift group, whites with low racial identity, ethnic replacement didn’t seem to care about ethnic replacement and showed stronger support for Democratic candidates. To wake up more whites to anti-immigration sentiments and white identity politics, you need to show them the effects of diversity in the social context as well as what a demographic replacement will mean in the next two decades.

Why did so many white Americans support Donald Trump’s Presidency? The reasons are numerous, though there are some key reasons why he won. To look at the exact reasons why, we need to look at some evolutionary psychology as well as political psychology. I came across a paper today titled The threat of increasing diversity: Why many White Americans support Trump in the 2016 presidential election, it has many thought provoking things in it and pretty much confirms what the altright says about an increase in white identity occurring. An ‘ethnic awakening’ if you will. The authors state that white Americans high in racial identity will be more likely to derogate out-groups when white Americans realize they are becoming replaced in their own country.

Major, Blojorn and Blascovich (2016) state that reminding white Americans who are ‘high in ethnic identification’ (i.e., a white identitarian, an altrighters) that non-white populations will soon outnumber whites caused them to be more concerned about the future of whites in America, pushing them towards Trump and his anti-immigration policies. This also led to an increase in being politically incorrect. Moreover,  whites low in ethnic identification (say, a progressive leftist) showed no greater chance in voting for Trump nor his anti-immigration policies. This did, however, decrease positivity towards Trump as well as decreased their opposition towards political correctness. The authors write:

The U.S. Census Bureau (2012) projects that the national population of non-White racial groups will exceed that of Whites before the middle of this century. Many White Americans in the US view race relations as “zero-sum,” in which status gains for minorities means status loss for Whites (Wilkins & Kaiser, 2014) and less bias against minorities means more bias against Whites (Norton & Sommers, 2011). The belief that Whites are losing out to ethnic minorities is particularly prevalent among Trump supporters (De Jonge, 2016).

This is noticed, anecdotally speaking and you can follow the citations to get more information. From an evolutionary perspective, this does make sense. Competition for resources between groups trigger evolutionary instincts. More non-whites in America will decrease the white population who has the lowest birth rate by ethnicity in the country and this will trigger more anti-immigration sentiments in whites high in ethnic identification. This ‘zero-sum game’, the ‘if your ethnic group has more than mine has less’ game will start to take hold in America in the next coming years if this paper is any indication of the future. The one particularly interesting point the authors bring up is that if there is “less ‘bias against minorities, there will be more minorities against whites”, and that, in turn, increased anti-immigration sentiments as well as drove people towards Trump and his anti-immigration views.

The more minorities that come into the country, the more whites in America will start to band together for their own ethnic genetic interests, move towards more conservative policies and begin to show more derogation towards the out-group.

The authors use the term ‘group status threat’, which is when one “worries that his group’s status, influence, and position in the hierarchy is under threat.” This threat then predicts out-group derogation. I wonder if oxytocin (a brain peptide that increases out-group derogation) increases when diversity occurs in the social context. I’d like to see that looked into one day.

There is also ‘integrated threat theory’ where increased diversity poses a threat to white Americans’ resources and American values. They also state, using social cognition theory, that increases in diversity will be ‘frightening’ and ‘confusing’ to whites, causing “uncertainty and fear”, which then drove whites towards more conservative anti-immigration policies.

When whites high in ethnic identification were shown a newspaper article stating that whites would be a minority by 2042, it led whites to be more concerned about whites’ social status in the country, leading them towards more conservative views and policies. It’s important to note that their views changed along with their policy recommendations.

In this study, the authors tested experimentally whether reminding white Americans that of the increasing diversity in the US affects their political leanings, whether or not group status is the cause of the political leanings when one hears about ethnic replacements, and whether or not ethnic identification or political alignment moderated the effects. They expected that reminding whites of ethnic replacement will cause them to lean towards conservative views and politicians (Trump, Kasich, Cruz) while decreasing support for Democrats (Clinton and Sanders).

People who experience ‘group status threat’ will be more likely to vote for Trump since he has more anti-immigration, antidiversity views than all politicians who ran for President. This, the researchers hypothesized, would come to fruition in their study. They also predicted that reminding white Americans of ethnic replacement would cause them to support more anti-immigration policies and be more resistant to political correctness, i.e., they would be more likely to be against positive policies for the out-group. They would become intolerant towards the out-group upon exposure to the reality of ethnic replacement in the country.

We also tested ethnic identification and political affiliation as potential moderators of the predicted effect of condition.1 Drawing on social identity theory (Tajfel & Turner, 1986), we expected that reminders of increasing ethnic diversity would be especially threatening to Whites whose race/ethnicity is a central aspect of their identity. Thus we expected them to report greater support for Republican candidates, anti-immigrant policies, and opposition to political correctness in response to reminders of the racial shift compared to Whites low in ethnic identification. In contrast, based on Craig and Richeson’s (2014b) finding that reminders of the racial shift increased support for conservative ideology irrespective of political leanings, we did not expect political affiliation to moderate effects.

Whites whose ‘race/ethnicity is a central aspect of their identity’, i.e. altrighters were predicted to be especially threatened at the reminder of ethnic replacement in their country of birth. However, as expected and what is seen in anecdotal accounts, whites low in ethnic identification, i.e., progressive leftists, antifas, etc, showed the opposite.

The researchers had a sample consisting of 450 white Americans with the following political beliefs: 262 Democrats, 114 Republicans, 50 Independents and 24 ‘other’. After removing the Independents and ‘others’ from the sample they had 376 white American participants (51.1 percent female).

They were given articles and were given two minutes to read them. One was an article talking about the ethnic replacement of whites and whites’ minority status in America that’s projected to occur by 2042 (aptly called ‘racial shift’) while the other article used “similar language to indicate geographic mobility is increasing (control condition).” It’s interesting to note that it seems like the only difference between the two articles is the wording. After reading the articles, they then completed tasks assessing group status threat, support for the current candidates running for office, anti-immigration sentiments, ethnic identification, and opposition to political correctness. After the completion of the tasks, they were then told the reason for the study and compensated their one dollar.

White Americans exposed to ‘racial shift condition’ reported greater group status threat than those in the control condition. This shows that white Americans who live in a diverse neighborhood will be more likely to be affected by the ‘racial shift condition’, leading them towards anti-immigration sentiment, a strong feeling towards white identity, and be more likely to hold more right-wing views. Whites high in ethnic identification showed greater group status threat than the control (.29) in the racial shift condition while whites low in ethnic identification did not. So, white identitarians showed a greater feeling of threat towards the group than did progressive leftists and antifas. Can’t say I’m too surprised. I did theorize in my article on the rise of the altright that either leftists have less oxytocin and altrighters have more, or that since political beliefs are heritable that high amounts of oxytocin will have one gravitate towards using their altruistic tendencies for the out-group or the in-group. This seems to be some evidence for my theory. For both right-wingers and left-wingers, ethnic identification was positively related to group status threat, but it was stronger in right-wingers. Even more evidence for my oxytocin/political beliefs theory.

White identitarians (whites high in ethnic identification) reported moderately greater positivity towards Trump as well as an even greater chance of voting for him in the racial shift scenario compared to the geographic movement scenario. Conversely, whites low in ethnic identification (progressive leftists, antifas, etc) showed less positivity towards Trump in the racial shift condition than in the geographic movement (control) condition,. However, in the racial shift condition, when one had high ethnic identification it led to increased positivity and a higher chance of voting for Trump. However, in the geographic condition, ethnic identification was unrelated to positivity towards Trump as well as voting for him.

Whites who showed less identification showed somewhat less support towards Sanders, being somewhat less likely to vote for him in the racial shift condition than in the geographic movement condition. In whites low in ethnic identity, neither condition (racial shift or geographic movement) had any effect on voting for Sanders or positivity towards him. Now here’s the good part: in the racial shift condition, whites high in ethnic identity showed somewhat less support and positivity towards Sanders in the racial shift condition compared to the geographic shift condition. Moreover, in the racial shift condition, ethnic identification was negatively correlated with positivity and chance of voting for Sanders, whereas in the control condition ethnic identification showed no effect.

In the racial shift condition, white identitarians were more supportive of anti-immigration policies than progressive leftists, while whites low in ethnic identification showed no difference, regardless of the condition. Ethnic identification was related to anti-immigration policies in both the racial shift and geographic movement conditions, but it was stronger in the racial shift condition.

White identitarians did not differ in outlook on political correctness by condition, while whites who show less ethnic identity reported less opposition to political correctness. Ethnic identification and anti-PC views were positively related in the racial shift condition but unrelated in the geographic shift condition.

Exposure to the racial shift condition vs. the geographic movement condition elicits different responses based on one’s political alignment and ethnic identification. Exposure to the racial shift condition increased group status threat, support for Trump and support for anti-immigration policies while somewhat decreasing support for Sanders, but only among whites high in ethnic identification. Conversely, for whites low in ethnic identification in exposure to the racial shift, there was no effect on group status threat, support for Sanders or anti-immigration sentiments and actually led to a decrease in positivity for Trump. That’s pretty powerful right there.

The support and election of Donald Trump is showing a paradigm shift in this country as ethnies in America start voting on racial lines. As diversity continues to increase and as more white Americans begin to realize the ethnic replacement will begin to impede on how many resources they have access to as well as the ‘racism being flipped on them’ with ‘less bias on minorities being more bias towards whites’, more and more whites will start voting not on party lines, but ethnic lines like all other ethnies in this country do. In the racial shift group, whites high in ethnic identification showed increased support for Trump and anti-immigration policies, increased opposition towards political correctness and decreased Sanders support through group status threat. Conversely, in the racial shift group, reminders of ethnic replacement in whites low in ethnic identification showed decreased Trump support and his policies and did not lead to group status threat. This can be termed ‘ethnic suicide’. Clearly, increased diversity is a threat to some but not all white Americans.

What boggles my mind is that when whites low in ethnic identification were reminded of the projected ethnic replacement by 2042, they decreased support for Trump and increased support for anti-immigration policies and their support for norms that prohibit bias in hate speech, which was not mediated by the group status threat. The authors put forth one theory why this may be the case. They say that whites low in ethnic identification were thinking of the changing racial demographics on the country as a whole, not just on their own ethnic group which may have led them to support a candidate who is tolerant of diversity and antibias norms. Reminding Americans high in racial identity of ethnic replacement increasingly shifted support to Trump and away from Sanders. Though this effect was not seen in relation to other candidates, the authors attributed this to Trump’s stance on immigration and political correctness relative to the other Republican candidates. To those white Americans with a high racial identity who experience group status threat, they would be drawn to Trump and his anti-immigration, anti-PC speech. The authors state:

Of all of the candidates, Trump has been most vocal in his opposition to “outsiders” such as Muslims and illegal immigrants from Latin America, and most openly critical of “political correctness” in both his rhetoric and his behavior. Trump’s rhetoric and policies thus appear to hold special appeal for White Americans highly in racial/ethnic identification who are concerned about the declining position of Whites in American society and who often perceive reverse discrimination as prevalent. In contrast, Sanders may have been perceived as the most inclusive candidate and thus most likely to exacerbate threats to White’s status as a group.

This sums up the 2016 election in one paragraph. White Americans high in racial identity showed a greater chance to vote for Trump, greater opposition to political correctness and were more likely to espouse anti-immigration sentiments.

Political leaning affiliation had a large and expected effect on candidate choice as well as policy preferences. Compared to Dems, Republicans reported much stronger support for Republican candidates than Democratic candidates while being more supportive of anti-immigration and “more un-PC attitudes”. However, when reminded of ethnic replacement, both Democrats and Republicans who showed high racial identification were more likely to lean right and vote Trump. This study shows important implications about group identity and intergroup process to voting preferences. In whites high in racial identity, increased racial diversity affects voting preferences amongst whites, with the strength of the racial/ethnic identity moderating the effect. I.e., the stronger a racial identity one has the more likely they are to support Trump and anti-immigration policies, irrespective of political leaning. Due to this study, psychologists and political scientists need to begin to pay attention to the increasing concerns of whites high in racial identification, while traditionally thinking that white Americans’ politics weren’t driven by white identity, deeming them to be unimportant to whites’ political outlooks. For example, one study showed that “racial identification, perceptions of discrimination, and linked fate were only weak predictors of White Americans’ attitudes on policies related to race and immigration. This led them to conclude that “Whites’ whiteness is usually likely to be no more noteworthy to them than is breathing the air around them” (Sears and Savelli, 2006, p. 901).

However, the current political climate shows that this no longer is the case. As more non-whites immigrate into America, whites who have high racial identity, irrespective of political leaning, will become more open to supporting Trump (or people like him) as well as anti-immigration policies. As the white majority in America shrinks, more and more white Americans will be open to white identity politics to get back their rightful resources in the country as well as the demographic majority. Eventually, with more and more unchecked immigration, white identity will start to become a central part in white American politics and voting blocks. White Americans who regard their identity as ‘white’ and an important part of their identity, future white American political preferences will be molded by group status threat as well as opposition to diversity. Trump has ‘tapped into’ the demographic of white Americans who feel looked down on in their own home country from mass immigration from the South (and soon from MENA countries). White Americans who feel that their numerical advantage is threatened are more likely to vote for Trump and support anti-immigration policies that will begin to benefit American whites.

It is, however, important to note that Trump may not be who he says he is (like most politicians). On election night last month I blogged on Donald Trump and Ethnic Genetic Interests. I showed that contrary to the average perception of him, his interests lie with Israel, not with his own racial group (due to his children marrying Jews). Moreover, he has already reneged on his wall, deporting illegals and his supposed moratorium on Muslim immigration into the US from threat countries. If anything, Trump is just a stepping stone towards more nationalistic attitudes in the US for whites. With the increased diversity, whites will start to see that they are becoming replaced by other ethnies and in whites with high racial identity, it will trigger nationalistic attitudes and responses to the impending threat on their unique genetic code. This will help to foster the awakening of more whites to identity politics, voting in their own ethnic interests and not for the interest of other ethnies.

I personally hope this leads to a renaissance of race-realism in America, but I may be aiming the bar too high. The conclusion of this study is hopeful for the status of whites in America, however. The more whites that get exposed to diversity AND have high racial identity will then lean more towards Trumpian policies. As whites decrease in number in the US, more and more whites will begin to vote for themselves and, in my opinion, once these nationalistic attitudes appear in the white consciousness in America, this demographic replacement can begin to be reversed. If it were not for the increased immigration, however, this would not have happened. The increased immigration is a main driver of these feelings towards political correctness and anti-immigration. The more anti-white sentiment that is heard in America, the more whites high in racial identity will move towards the right while leftists will continue to commit ‘ethnic suicide’.

The takeaway from this paper is this: Whites exposed to the racial shift high in racial identity were more likely to support Trump, anti-immigration policies and be anti-PC. Whites in the racial shift condition who showed low racial identity showed the opposite and were more likely to vote for Democratic candidates. This paper shows good news in the future for whites in America and voting in their interests. Whites in America are beginning to vote for their ethnic genetic interests and this is largely due to genetic similarity theory as immigration from MENA countries and South of the border increase into America. Moreover, with Trump’s allegiance to Israel, Trump is just a man to awaken more people to the realities of immigration. So Trump himself won’t do anything, but his anti-immigration rhetoric is having people notice the realities of immigration and ethnic replacement in America.

RIP Rushton and Jensen

2050 words

Today is the 4th anniversary of Jensen’s death, with the 4th anniversary of Rushton’s being three weeks ago on October 2nd. The fact that two of the biggest names in the IQ game, and race science game died in a 3-week span was crushing to the truth. When they were pushing their theories on racial differences in intelligence, they had their classes stormed in on and they pretty much couldn’t teach. All of this, in a country where so-called ‘freedom of speech exists’, we can have people shout others down when they speak uncomfortable truths when they don’t like what they’re hearing. BUT, just because those truths don’t want to be heard does not change the reality of them. Rushton and Jensen were pretty much explaining why black Americans have less academic achievement over whites. But when a genetic explanation is brought up instead of the Left’s want for there to be a fully environmental, ‘racism’ explanation they storm classrooms and protest against the so-called ‘fascists’ who are just reporting what they find.

In Rushton’s article The New Enemies of Evolutionary Sciencehe extensively talks about the derision he faced from students while he gave his lectures. It was so bad that he couldn’t teach:

Behind the scenes, however, I became the target of a witch hunt by some of the administrators. Dismayingly, my dean, a physical anthropologist, publicly declared that I had lost my scientific credibility and spearheaded an attack on me in the newspapers. She issued a series of preemptive statements making plain her negative opinion of me and my work. “What evidence is there for this ranked ordering of the evolution of the human races?” she wrote. “None.” Claiming that her views represented only her academic opinion she emphasized that she was not speaking in any administrative capacity. Her letter was nonetheless widely interpreted in the media as a refutation by my “boss.” Henceforth, in order to support me, a person would now have to go up against the dean in addition to prevailing opinion. Next, the chair of my department gave me an annual performance rating of “unsatisfactory” citing my “insensitivity.” This was a remarkable turnaround because it occurred for the same year in which I had been made a Fellow of the prestigious John Simon Guggenheim Foundation. My previous twelve years of annual ratings had been “good” or “excellent.” Indeed, my earlier non-controversial work had made me one of the most cited scholars at my university.

Some radical and black students mobilized and held rallies, even bringing in a member of the African National Congress to denounce me. In one demonstration, a mob of 40 people stormed through the psychology department, banging on walls and doors, bellowing slogans through bull horns, drawing swastikas on the walls, and writing on my door “Racists Pig Live Here.”

The administration responded by barring me from the classroom and ordering me to lecture by videotape on the pretext that they could not protect me from the lawlessness of students. Again I launched formal grievances. After a term of enforced teaching by videotape, I won the right to resume teaching in person, though then I was required to run a gauntlet of demonstrators shouting protests and threats. Only after several forced cancellations of my classes did the administration warn the demonstrators that further action would lead to suspension and legal action. That brought the protests to a halt.

This sounds just like today huh? Seems like much hasn’t changed in the past 30 years. The amount of derision that Rushton faced just for his areas of research interest speaks volumes. Clearly, people are scared of the truth about human nature, whether individually or racially/ethnically. The fact that Rushton couldn’t teach because his classes kept getting interrupted shows that people don’t care about factual data, especially when it hurts their feelings or conflicts with any type of egalitarian nonsense they have in their heads. Once challenged, they get mad, scream ‘racist’ and simply do anything in their power to make life a living hell for the person who dares to speak non-politically correct things. But, and a huge but, just because one stops, for the time being, this from being spoken of, DOES NOT make the racial differences between groups go away. People look for any and all types of environmental explanations to attempt to explain away racial IQ gaps and other racial differences both physically and mentally, but they don’t hold up to the genetic explanation, which was shouted down by people who don’t want their fragile reality broken.

The same thing, of course, happened to Arthur Jensen:

In the 1990s protesters in London pelted him with tomatoes at a lecture hall. “Jensenism” became a term of rebuke, used against those who championed theories about whites’ superiority. “Jensenism,” evolutionary biologist Stephen Jay Gould once declared, rested “on a rotten edifice.”

Arthur Jensen recalls some of these ‘protests’ with AmRen’s Jared Taylor back in 1992:

AR: Well, the sorts of things that you’ve been telling me, the sorts of things you’ve been doing research about, can you and do you freely teach these things in your classes?

Jensen: I sure do. I soft-pedaled things 20 years ago, and even then, there were great protests. I had students who would drop the course if these things were brought up even in a very mild way, in a hypothetical way. Students today wonder what all the shouting was about.

AR: Is that so?

Jensen: Yes, it’s rather hard to get students to believe that there were these protests and so on. They take a lot of this for granted. Oh, there’s been a great change in the students in that respect … But even in 1969-1970, I never saw a black in any of these demonstrations.

AR: Is that right?

Jensen: Not a one.

AR: They were SDS [Students for a Democratic Society]-types?

Jensen: All SDS and Progressive Labor Party, mainly. I tried to put them out when they tried to audit my course, because they were hecklers, and so some of the SDS people would sign up for the course. Of course, then they’d have to do the assignments and take the exams.

Interestingly enough, they usually were the top students in the course because they did so much outside reading to try and give me a bad time. They would go out and read everything Galton wrote! They were bright students. They just happened to be political radicals. “

Years ago, if I gave talks at the APA or the American Educational Research Association, the least little thing you’d say, people would get up on the floor and start denouncing you. I haven’t run into that for a long time, except in Canada and Australia. There’s about a ten year cultural lag in those places, I think, on this topic.

AR: I guess nowadays, as compared to fifteen or twenty years ago, you’re not a notorious presence on campus? People don’t say, “There goes Jensen!” You just don’t get that anymore?

Jensen: No, no. I used to. I used to have to be accompanied around campus by two campus policemen. In fact, they told me not to leave my office and go to the library, or any place, except to go to the men’s room around the corner, but not anywhere else without calling the campus police. They’d whiz across campus in a car and they’d be here in just a couple of minutes and walk with me wherever I wanted to go. One year I had two campus policemen, plain clothes men, in all my classes. They audited my courses.

He had to be escorted around campus by two campus police, all because of his research areas of interest. Why did Jensen have to be protected by two men in plain clothes just for talking about his scientific research? There is a clue in what he said: the Students for a Democratic Society (SDS) and the Labor Party, not coincidentally, leftists who like to censor free, true speech when it doesn’t match to their false views of egalitarianism. But as we know, just because the causes for racial differences aren’t spoken of, that doesn’t mean that they go away. Is race a causal factor in intelligence? Yes, it is. ‘Discrimination’,  a so-called ‘stereotype threat’ is not the cause for lower black intelligence. Rushton and Jensen showed that the races differ by 1.2 SDs at the most, and that it was 80 percent genetic in nature (Rushton and Jensen, 2005: 279). Were the public to accept truths such as this and not any false ‘truths’ such as what the left puts out, Rushton and Jensen would not have received the derision they did when they were publishing and pushing their theories decades ago. I recall a specific poster that I saw on AmRen a few years back talking about how Jensen was a ‘racist’ and along with Shockley, both needed to be fired and lose their jobs because they just so happened to speak these uncomfortable truths.

Here is a Satoshi Kanazawa article he published a week after Rushton’s death:

When I met Phil in person for the first time the following year, I could not believe that a man so intensely hated in public (nearly always by idiots who did not know him personally and who did not know anything about science) could be so gentle, genial, and generous in person.  His very kind and mild manners always impressed me, especially in stark contrast to how people thought and assumed he was.

There is one very small consolation in Phil’s tragically early death:  Phil was not an artist, he was a scientist.  When an artist dies, his art dies with him, which is why there has not been (and will never be) Beethoven’s 10th Symphony or Guernica II.  Unlike art, however, science is cumulative.  The rest of us can honor his memory and his scientific legacy by continuing his work.  Phil was simultaneously a tremendous role model and a very tough act to follow.  He was a model of scientific integrity.  Unlike Galileo, he never recanted.

Science is cumulative. He, Jensen, Murray, Herrnstein, Gottfredson, Lynn et al are Modern Day Galileos. They spoke out against this leftist paradigm that has persisted in universities for decades, and even while shown extreme derision, they never recant their statements because they know they are just speaking the truth. Any allegations of so-called ‘racism’ are just that: allegations with no factual backing behind them. The fact that they need to be called childish words such as ‘racist’ and they need to have their lectures and classes interrupted by ‘protests’ speaks volumes on the research they were doing. The fact that the left has nothing to say except untrue vitriol shows who was right. When you have to attempt to silence someone because you don’t like what they’re saying or it ‘offends you’, that says volumes about your character than the one’s character you’re trying to spew vitriol at.

The fact of the matter is, no matter what anyone or any entity does to attempt to hide racial differences in intelligence, or any other trait for that matter, the truth will always come out. When answers one receives don’t line up to what one sees in his day-to-day life, one goes and looks for the truth. And that truth is that some races aren’t as intelligent as others which leads to differences in scholastic achievement and life success. These differences persist through the generations and when a downtrodden individual (no matter the race) realizes that those have a better social standing then they, they make mental leaps in their head that ‘they’re being held down’ or ‘the man is out to get them’ not even thinking that it’s their own innate ability that’s holding them down in comparison to the other group.

Rushton and Jensen will be fully vindicated one day. It’s only a matter of time. David Piffer showed that IQ alleles differ in frequency between races, meaning that a FULL vindication of Rushton, Jensen, Gottfredson, Murray, Herrnstein, Lynn, Kanazawa et al are going to come soon.

RIP to two great men who had a huge effect on my worldview and the reasons for differences around the world. I only hope that others rise up to continue their work and prove, once and for all, that they were right.

Myopia, IQ, and Race

1200 words

We’ve all heard of the nerd stereotype. One of the main ones is that nerds wear glasses. However, as most of my readers may know, stereotypes are based on fact more often than not. From the black criminal and sprinter, to the hyper-intelligent East Asian, to the intelligent and creative Europeans, we see that these so-called ‘stereotypes’ arise because stereotypes are actually average traits. Therefore, this ‘nerd stereotype’ that they always wear glasses is based on averages, so there must be a genetic component behind it. In this article I will talk about the genetics of myopia, reasons why researchers believe it arises, and racial differences in the prevalence of myopia.

Myopia, better known as nearsightedness, has a pleiotropic relationship with intelligence. Pleiotropy is the single gene or set of genes controlling multiple, possibly unrelated, phenotypic traits. So if the two traits are correlated, then there is a good chance that if one wears glasses they may have higher average intelligence.

Rosner and Belkin (1987) found that the prevalence of myopia was higher in more intelligent and educated groups. They found a strong association between the rate of myopia, years of schooling and intelligence level. Schooling and intelligence weigh equally with myopia, showing that those who are myopic tend to stay in school longer and are more intelligent than average.

Saw et al (2004) show that there may be similar genes associated with eye growth or size (myopia) and neocortical size (*possibly* correlated with IQ, we know it is). This is exactly what Cohn, Cohn, and Jensen found in 1987; that there was a pleiotropic relationship between IQ and myopia. One set of genes controls one or multiple phenotypic traits. They also say that nonverbal IQ is correlated with myopia in the Singaporean cohort independent of near work from the children (such as reading). Nonverbal IQ may be an independent risk factor of myopia independent of books read per week. They conclude that more research needs to be taken out to untangle the cause and effect of the myopia/intelligence/reading relationship.

Mirashi et al (2014) show in a sample of 4600 myopia-inflicted Germans between the ages of 35 and 74 that about 53 percent of the sample had graduated from college compared to 24 percent of the sample who didn’t go to school past high school. They, too, conclude that higher levels of myopia are associated with higher educational achievement and post-school professional achievement and that those who were myopic had higher levels of educational achievement than those in the sample who weren’t myopic.

More recently, Verma and Verma (2015) state that there is evidence that both genetic and environmental factors play a role in the prevalence of myopia. Moreover, Czepida, Lodykowska, and Czepita (2008) come to the same conclusion; that children with myopia have higher IQs and was verified in other countries (the USA, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Israel, New Zealand).

The correlation between myopia and IQ is between .2 and .25 (Jensen, 1998 b; 149). Jensen writes on page 150:

. . .the degree of myopia was measured as a continuous variable (refraction error) by means of optical techniques in a group of sixty adolescents selected only for high IQs (Raven matrices) and their less gifted full siblings, who averaged fourteen IQ points lower, a difference equivalent to 0.92o. The high-IQ subjects differed significantly from their lower-IQ siblings in myopia by an average of 0.39a on the measure of refraction error.1161 In other words, since there is a within-families correlation between myopia and IQ, the relationship is intrinsic. However, it is hard to think of any directly functional relationship between myopia and IQ. The data are most consistent with there being a pleiotropic relationship. The causal pathway through which the genetic factor that causes myopia also to some extent elevates g (or vice versa) is unknown. Because the within-family relationship of myopia and IQ was found with Raven’s matrices, which in factor analyses is found to have nearly all of its common factor variance on g ,n it leaves virtually no doubt that the IQ score in this case represents g almost exclusively. (emphasis his)

Therefore, as noted earlier, we would see a slight variation in the general population between those with high IQs and those who wear glasses and are myopic.

Jensen also talks about race and myopia. He says that Asians have the highest rates of myopia, while blacks have the lowest rate and whites have a rate slightly higher than blacks.

In a tribute to Arthur Jensen, edited by Helmuth Nyborg, it states that East Asians have the highest rates of myopia, with blacks having the lowest rate and whites being intermediate (Rushton’s Rule of Three).  Ashkenazi Jews have a rate of myopia two times higher than that of gentiles, on par with East Asians. These are yet other biological correlates with the g factor that also lend credence to the hereditarian hypothesis. also shows that East Asians have a higher rate of myopia with blacks having a lower rate:

Certain types of visual disturbances affect some races more frequently. Asian-Americans, for example, are more likely to be near-sighted than Caucasians or African-Americans. African-Americans have the lowest incidence of near-sightedness, but are more prone to cataracts and some other eye diseases. Eye problems, including the need to wear glasses, also can run in families.

Of course, if myopia is a pleiotropic trait (there is good evidence that there is), and wearing glasses runs in families as well as high intelligence, it can be safely hypothesized that the two indeed do have a relationship with each other. The biological correlates show enough that these traits, too, follow Rushton’s Rule.

Finally, Au, Tay and Kim (1993) present data that shows the prevalence and severity of myopia is associated with higher education. They also report on data that Rosner and Belkin reported the prevalence of myopia in males with and IQ of 80 or less was 8 percent while the rate increased up to 27.3 among those with an IQ of 128 or higher. Reported separately, it was concluded that the myopia rates in the cohort of 110,236 young Singaporean males correlated with race (Au, Tay, and Lim, 1993). The myopia rate for the Chinese was 48.5 (IQ 105), for Eurasians it was 34.7, for Indians it was 30.4 (IQ 82), and for Malays it was 24.5 (IQ 92). It’s worth noting that India’s IQ is depressed by disease and bad nutrition, and if this were to be ratified their IQ would be around 94. So this, again, shows the biological correlate with IQ and myopia as it’s showing on the Indians’ genotype.

The association between myopia and intelligence isn’t definite yet, however with more studies looking into the relationship between these variables I believe it will be concrete that those who are more myopic tend to have higher IQs due to the pleiotropic nature of IQ and myopia. Since reading is heritablethose with higher IQs as children tend to read more as adults, and the racial gradient is noticed in children, it’s pretty safe to say that myopia and IQ are linked pleiotropically and give more credence to the hereditarian hypothesis. Most studies find a statisically positive correlation between myopia and intelligence. Along with the racial disparities in myopia as well as intelligence, it’s pretty safe to say that the relationship is genetic and pleiotropic in nature since the races also differ in these variables.

The Evolution of Violence: A Look at Infanticide and Rape

1700 words

The pioneer of criminology was a man named Cesare Lombroso, an Italian Jew (a leftover remnant from the Roman days), who had two central theories: 1) that criminal behavior originated in the brain and 2) criminals were an evolutionary throwback, a more primitive type of human. Lombroso felt strongly about the rehabilitation of criminals, at the same time believing in the death penalty for “born criminals”. Though, with new advances in criminology and new insights to the brain, it looks like Lombroso was right with his theory of born criminals.

Why are you 100 times more likely to be killed on your birthday? Why are children 50 times more likely to be murdered by their stepfather than biological one? Why do some parents kill their children? Finally, why do men rape not only strangers, but also rape their wives? All of these questions can be answered with evolutionary psychology.

Evolutionarily speaking, antisocial and violent behavior wasn’t a random occurrence. When these actions occurred tens of thousands of years ago, they were because resources were being acquired from these actions. Thus, we can see some modern criminal acts as resource competition. The more resources one has, the easier it is for him to pass his genes on to the next generation (a big driver for violence). In turn, women are more attracted to males who can provide resources and protection (those who were more antisocial and violent). This also explains these prison romances, in which women get into romances with murderous criminals since they are attracted to the violence (protection) and resources (theft).

The mugger who robs for a small amount of money is increasing his odds of resource acquisition. Drive-by shootings in violent neighborhoods increase the status of those who survive the shootout. What looks like a simple brawl over nothing may be one attempting to increase social dominance. All of these actions have evolutionary causes. What drive these actions are our ‘Selfish Genes’.

The more successful genes are more ruthlessly selfish in their struggle for survival, which then drives individual behavior. The individual behaviors that occur due to our selfish genes may be antisocial and violent in nature, which in our modern society is frowned upon. The name of the game is ‘fitness’. The amount of children you can have in your time allotted on Earth. This is all that matters to our genes. Even those accomplishments you think of, such as completing college or attaining mass amounts of capital all fall back to fitness. With that, increasing your fitness and ensuring your genetic lineage passes on to the next generation is greatly enhanced.

Biological fitness can be enhanced in one of two ways. You can have as many children as possible, giving little parental care to each, or you can have fewer children but show more attention and care to them. This is known as r/K Selection Theory. Rushton’s r/K Selection Theory compliments Dawkins Selfish Gene theory in that the r-strategist is maximizing his fitness by having as many children as possible, while the K-strategist increases his fitness by having fewer children in comparison to the r-strategist but showing more parental attention. There are, however, instances in which humans kill children, whether it’s a mother killing a newborn baby or a stepfather killing a child. What are the reasons for this?

Killing Kids

The risk of being a homicide victim in the first year of life is highest in the first year of life. Why? Canadian Psychologists Daly and Wilson demonstrated in inverse relationship between degree of genetic relatedness and being a victim of homicide. Daly and Wilson discovered that the offender and victim are genetically related in only 1.8 percent of all homicides. Therefore, 98 percent of all murders are killings of people who do not share the killer’s genes.

Many stories have been told about ‘wicked stepparents’ in numerous myths and fairytales. But, as we know, a lot of stories have some basis in reality. Children of stepparents are 40 times more likely to suffer abuse at the hands of a stepparent. People who are living together who are unrelated to one another are more likely to kill one another. Even adoptions are more successful when the adopting parents view the child as genetically similar to themselves.

In this study carried out by Maillart, et al, it was discovered that for mothers, the average age of offense for filicide was 29.5 years for the mother and 3.5 years for the babe. Bourget, Grace, and Whitehurst, 2007 showed that a risk factor for infanticide was a second child born to a mother under 20-years of age. The reasoning for this is simple: at a younger age the mother is more fertile, and thus, more attractive to potential mates. The older the woman is the more sense it makes to hold on to the genetic investment since it’s harder to make up for the genetic loss late in her reproductive life.

Genetic relatedness, fitness, and parental investment show, in part, why filicides and infanticides occur.

Raping Your Wife

There are evolutionary reasons for rape as well. The rape of a non-relative can be looked at as the ultimate form of ‘cheating’ in this selfish game of life. One who rapes doesn’t have to acquire resources in order to attract a mate, he can just go and ‘take what he wants’ and attempt to spread his genes to the next generation through non-consensual sex. It’s known that rape victims have a higher chance of getting pregnant, with 7.98 percent of rape victims becoming pregnant. (News article) One explanation for this is that the rapist may be able to possibly detect how fertile a woman is. Moreover, rapists are more likely to rape fertile women rather than infertile women.

One rapist that author of the book The Anatomy of Violence, Adrian Raine interviewed said that he specifically chose ugly women to rape (Raine, 2013: 28). He says that he’s giving ugly women ‘what they want’, which is sex. There is a belief that women actually enjoy sex, and even orgasm during the rape, even though they strongly resist and fight back during the attack. Reports of orgasm during rape are around 5 to 6 percent (Raine, 2013: 29), but the true number may be higher since most women are embarrassed to say that they orgasmed during a rape.

Men, as we all know, are more likely to engage in no-strings-attached sex more than women. This is due to the ‘burden’ of sex: children. Women are more likely to carefully select a partner who has numerous resources and the ability to protect the family. Men don’t have the burden of sticking around to raise the child.

Men are more likely to find a sexual relationship more upsetting in comparison to women who are more likely to find an emotional infidelity as more distressing. This data on Americans still held true for South Korea, Germany, Japan, and the Netherlands. Men are better than women at detecting infidelity, and are more likely to suspect cheating in their spouses (Raine, 2013: 32). Unconscious reason being, a man doesn’t want to raise a child who is not genetically similar to themselves.

But this begs another question: why would a man rape his wife? One reason is that when a man discovers his spouse has been unfaithful, he would want to inseminate her as quickly as possible.

There has never in the history of humankind been one example of women banding together to wage war on another society to gain territory, resources or power. Think about it. It is always men. There are about nine male murderers for every one female murderer. When it comes to same-sex homicides, data from twenty studies show that 97 percent of the perpetrators are male. Men are murderers. The simple evolutionary reason is that women are worth fighting for. (Raine, 2013: 32)

A feminist may look at this stat and say “MEN cause all of the violence, MEN hurt women” and attempt to use this data as ‘proof’ that men are violent. Yes, we men are violent, and there is an evolutionary basis for it. However, what feminists who push the ‘all sexes are equal’ card don’t know, is that when they say ‘men are more likely to be murderers’ (which is true), they are actively accepting biological differences between men and women. Most of these differences in crime come down to testosterone. I would also assume that men would be more likely to have the ‘warrior gene’, otherwise known as the MAOA-L gene, which ups the propensity for violence.

The sociobiological model suggests that poorer people kill due to lack of resources. And one reason that men are way more likely to be victims of homicide is because men are in competition with other men for resources.

Going back to the violence on stepchildren that I alluded to earlier, aggression towards stepchildren can be seen as a strategic way of motivating unwanted, genetically dissimilar others out of the home and not take up precious resources for the next generation bred by the stepfather (Raine, 2013: 34).

Women also have a way to increase their fitness, which a brunt of it is through sexual selection. Women are known to be ‘worriers’. That is, they rate dangerous and aggressive acts higher than men. Women are also more fearful of bodily injury and more likely to develop phobias of animals. In these situations, women are protecting themselves and their unborn (or born) children by maximizing their chances for survival by being more fearful of things. This can help explain why women are less physically violent than men and why those murder stats are so heavily skewed towards men: biology.

Women compete for their genetic interests with beauty and childbearing. The more beautiful the woman, the better resources a woman can acquire from a male and this will ensure a healthy life for the offspring.

Evolutionary psychology can help explain the differences in murder between men and women. It can also explain why young mothers kill their children and why stepparents are so abusive to, and are more likely to murder stepchildren. Of course, a social context is involved but we need to look at evolutionary causes for what we think we may be able to simply explain. Because it’s, more often than not, more complex than we could imagine. And that complexity is our Selfish Genes doing anything possible to reproduce more copies of itself through its vehicle: the human body.

The Evolution of Morality

Summary: Moral reasoning is just a post hoc search for reasons to justify the judgments people have already made. When people are asked why, for certain questions, they find things morally wrong, they say they cannot think of a reason but they still think it is wrong. This has been verified by numerous studies. Moral reasoning evolved as a skill to further social cohesiveness and to further our social agendas. Even in different cultures, those with matching socioeconomic levels have the same moral reasoning. Morality cannot be entirely constructed by children based on their own understanding of harm. Thus, cultural learning must play a bigger role than the rationalists had given it. Larger and more complex brains also show more cognitive sophistication in making choices and judgments, confirming a theory of mine that larger brains are the cause of making correct choices as well as making moral judgments.

The evolution of morality is a much-debated subject in the field of evolutionary psychology. Is it, as the nativists say, innate? Or is it as the empiricists say, learned? Empiricists, better known as Blank Slatists, believe that we are born with a ‘blank slate’ and thus acquire our behaviors through culture and experience. In 1987 when John Haidt was studying moral psychology (now known as evolutionary psychology), moral psychology was focused on the third answer: rationalism. Rationalism dictates that children learn morality through social learning and interacting with other children to learn right from wrong.

Developmental psychologist Jean Piaget focused on the type of mistakes that children would make when seeing water moved from different shape glasses. He would, for example, put water into the same size glasses and ask children which one had more water. They all said they held the same amount of water. He then poured water from one glass into a taller glass and then asked the children which glass held more water. Children aged 6 and 7 say that the water level changed since the water was now in a taller glass. The children don’t understand that just because the water was moved to a taller glass doesn’t mean that there is now more water in the glass. Even when parents attempt to explain to their children why there is the same amount of water in the glass, they don’t understand it because they are not ready cognitively. It’s only when they reach an age and cognitive stage that they are ready to understand that the water level doesn’t change, just by playing around with cups of water themselves.

Basically, the understanding of the conservation of volume isn’t innate, nor is it learned by parents. Children figure it out for themselves only when their minds are cognitively ready and they are given the right experiences.

Piaget then applied his rules from the water experiment with the development of children’s morality. He played a marble game with them where he would break the rules and play dumb. The children the responded to his mistakes, correcting him, showing that they had the ability to settle disputes and respect and change rules. The growing knowledge progressed as children’s cognitive abilities matured.

Thus, Piaget argued that like children’s understanding of water conservation is like children’s understanding of morality. He concludes that children’s reasoning is self-constructed. You can’t teach 3-year-old children the concept of fairness or water conservation, no matter how hard you try. They will figure it out on their own through dispute and do things themselves, better than any parent could teach them, Piaget argued.

Piaget’s insights were then expanded by Lawrence Kohlberg who revolutionized the field of moral psychology with two innovations: developing a set of moral dilemmas that were presented to children of various ages. One example given was that a man broke into a drug store to steal medication for his ill wife. Is that a morally wrong act? Kohlberg wasn’t interested in whether the children said yes or no, but rather, their reasoning they gave when explaining their answers.

Kohlberg found a six-stage progression in children’s reasoning of the social world that matched up with what Piaget observed in children’s reasoning about the physical world. Young children judged right and wrong, for instance, on whether or not a child was punished for their actions, since if they were punished for their actions by an adult then they must be wrong. Kohlberg then called the first two stages the “pre-conventional level of moral judgment”, which corresponded to Piaget’s stage at which children judge the physical world by superficial features.

During elementary school, most children move on from the pre-conventional level and understand and manipulate rules and social conventions. Kids in this stage care more about social conformity, hardly ever questioning authority.

Kohlberg then discovered that after puberty, which is right when Piaget found that children had become capable of abstract thought, he found that some children begin to think for themselves about the nature of authority, the meaning of justice and the reasoning behind rules and laws. Kohlberg considered children “‘moral philosophers’ who are trying to work out coherent ethical systems for themselves”, which was the rationalist reasoning at the time behind morality. Kohlberg’s most influential finding was that the children who were more morally advanced frequently were those who had more opportunities for role-taking, putting themselves into another person’s shoes and attempting to feel how the other feels through their perspective.

We can see how Kohlberg and Piaget’s work can be used to support and egalitarian and leftist, individualistic worldview.

Kohlberg’s student, Elliot Turiel, then came along. He developed a technique to test for moral reasoning that doesn’t require verbal skill. His innovation was to tell children stories about children who break rules and then give them a series of yes or no questions. Turiel discovered that children as young as five normally say that the child was wrong to break the rule, but it would be fine if the teacher gave the child permission, or occurred in another school with no such rule.

But when children were asked about actions that harmed people, they were given a different set of responses. They were asked if a girl pushes a boy off of a swing because she wants to use it, is that OK? Nearly all of the children said that it was wrong, even when they were told that a teacher said it was fine; even if this occurred in a school with no such rule. Thus, Turiel concluded, children recognize that rules that prevent harm are moral rules related to “justice, rights, and welfare pertaining to how people ought to relate to one another” (Haidt, 2012, pg. 11). All though children can’t speak like moral philosophers, they were busy sorting information in a sophisticated way. Turiel realized that was the foundation of all moral development.

There are many rules and social conventions that have no moral reasoning behind them. For instance, the numerous laws of the Jews in the Old Testament in regards to eating or touching the swarming insects of the earth, to many Christians and Jews who believe that cleanliness is next to Godliness, to Westerners who believe that food and sex have a moral significance. If Piaget is right then why do so many Westerners moralize actions that don’t harm people?

Due to this, it is argued that there must be more to moral development than children constructing roles as they take the perspectives of others and feel their pain. There MUST be something beyond rationalism (Haidt, 2012, pg. 16).

Richard Shweder then came along and offered the idea that all societies must resolve a small set of questions about how to order society with the most important being how to balance the needs of the individual and group (Haidt, 2012, pg. 17).

Most societies choose a sociocentric, or collectivist model while individualistic societies choose a more individualist model. There is a direct relationship between consanguinity rates, IQ, and genetic similarity and whether or not a society is collectivist or individualistic.

Shweder thought that the concepts developed by Kohlberg and Turiel were made by and for those from individualistic societies. He doubted that the same results would occur in Orissa where morality was sociocentric and there was no line separating moral rules from social conventions. Shweder and two collaborators came up with 39 short stories in which someone does something that would violate a commonly held rule in the US or Orissa. They interviewed 180 children ranging from age 5 to 13 and 60 adults from Chicago and a matched sample of Brahmin children and adults from Orissa along with 120 people from lower Indian castes (Haidt, 2012, pg. 17).

In Chicago, Shweder found very little evidence for socially conventional thinking. Plenty of stories said that no harm or injustice occurred, and Americans said that those instances were fine. Basically, if something doesn’t protect an individual from harm, then it can’t be morally justified, which makes just a social convention.

Though Turiel wrote a long rebuttal essay to Shweder pointing out that most of the study that Shweder and his two collaborators proposed to the sample were trick questions. He brought up how, for instance, that in India eating fish is will stimulate a person’s sexual appetite and is thus forbidden to eat, with a widow eating hot foods she will be more likely to have sex, which would anger the spirit of her dead husband and prevent her from reincarnating on a higher plane. Turiel then argued that if you take into account the ‘informational assumptions’ about the way the world works, most of Shweder’s stories were really moral violations to the Indians, harming people in ways that Americans couldn’t see (Haidt, 2012, pg. 20).

Jonathan Haidt then traveled to Brazil to test which force was stronger: gut feelings about important cultural norms or reasoning about harmlessness. Haidt and one of his colleagues worked for two weeks to translate Haidt’s short stories to Portuguese, which he called ‘Harmless Taboo Violations’.

Haidt then returned to Philadelphia and trained his own team of interviewers and supervised the data collection for the four subjects in Philadelphia. He used three cities, using two levels of social class (high and low) and within each social class was two groups of children aged 10 to 12 and adults aged 18 to 28.

Haidt found that the harmless taboo stories could not be attributed to some way about the way he posed the questions or trained his interviewers, since he used two questions directly from Turiel’s experiment and found the same exact conclusions. Upper-class Brazilians looked like Americans on these stories (I would assume since Upper-class Brazilians have more European ancestry). Though in one example about breaking the dress-code of a school and wearing normal clothes, most middle-class children thought that it was morally wrong to do this. The pattern supported Shweder showing that the size of the moral-conventional distinction varied across cultural groups (Haidt, 2012, pg. 25).

The second thing that Haidt found was that people responded to harmless taboo stories just as Shweder predicted: upper-class Philadelphians judged them to be violations of social conventions while lower-class Brazilians judged them to be moral violations. Basically, well-educated people in all of the areas Haidt tested were more similar to each other in their response to harmless taboo stories than to their lower-class neighbors.

Haidt’s third finding was all differences stayed even when controlling for perceptions of harm. That is, he included a probe question at the end of each story asking: “Do you think anyone was harmed by what [the person in the story] did?” If Shweder’s findings were caused by perceptions of hidden victims, as was proposed by Turiel, then Haidt’s cross-cultural differences should have disappeared when he removed the subjects who said yes to the aforementioned question. But when he filtered out those who said yes, he found that the cultural differences got BIGGER, not smaller. This ended up being very strong evidence for Shweder’s claim that morality goes beyond harm. Most of Haidt’s subjects said that the taboos that were harmless were universally wrong, even though they harmed nobody.

Shweder had won the debate. Turiel’s findings had been replicated by Haidt using Turiel’s methods showing that the methods worked on people like himself, educated Westerners who grew up in an individualistic culture. He showed that morality varied across cultures and that for most people, morality extended beyond the issues of harm and fairness.

It was hard, Haidt argued, for  a rationalist to explain these findings. How could children self-construct moral knowledge from disgust and disrespect from their private analyses of harmlessness (Haidt, 2012, pg. 26)? There must be other sources of moral knowledge, such as cultural learning, or innate moral intuitions about disgust and disrespect which Haidt argued years later.

Yet, surprises were found in the data. Haidt had written the stories carefully to remove all conceivable harm to other people. But, in 38 percent of the 1620 times people heard the harmless offensive story, they said that somebody was harmed.

Haidt found that it was obvious in his sample of Philadelphians that it was obvious that the subjects had invented post hoc fabrications. People normally condemned the action very quickly, but didn’t need a long time to decide what they thought, as well as taking a long time to think up a victim in the story.

He also taught his interviewers to correct people when they made claims that contradicted the story. Even when the subjects realized that the victim they constructed in their head was fake, they still refused to say that the act was fine. They, instead, continued to search for other victims. They just could not think of a reason why it was wrong, even though they intuitively knew it was wrong (Haidt, 2012, pg. 29).

The subjects were reasoning, but they weren’t reasoning in search for moral truth. They were reasoning in support of their emotional reactions. Haidt had found evidence for philosopher David Hume’s claim that moral reasoning was often a servant of moral emotions. Hume wrote in 1739: “reason is, and ought to be only the slave of the passions, and can never pretend to any other office than to serve and obey them.”

Judgment and justification are separate processes. Moral reasoning is just a post hoc search for reasons to justify the judgments people have already made.

The two most common answers of where morality came from are that it’s innate (nativists) or comes from childhood learning (empiricists), also known as “social learning theory”. Though the empiricist position is incorrect.

  • The moral domain varies by culture. It is unusually narrow in western education and individualistic cultures. Sociocentric cultures broaden moral domain to encompass and regulate more aspects of life.
  • People sometimes have gut feelings – particularly about disgust – that can drive their reasoning. Moral reasoning is sometimes a post hoc fabrication.
  • Morality can’t be entirely self-constructed by children based on their understanding of harm. Cultural learning (social learning theory, Rushton, 1981) not guidance must play a larger role than rationalist had given it.

(Haidt, 2012, pg 30 to 31)

If morality doesn’t come primarily from reasoning, then that leaves a combination of innateness and social learning. Basically, intuitions come first, strategic reasoning second.

If you think that moral reasoning is something we do to figure out truth, you’ll be constantly frustrated by how foolish, biased, and illogical people become when they disagree with you. But if you think about moral reasoning as a skill we humans evolved to further our social agendas – to justify our own actions and to defend the teams we belong to – then things will make a lot more sense. Keep your eye on the intuitions, and don’t take people’s moral arguments at face value. They’re mostly post hoc constructions made up on the fly crafted to advance one or more strategic objectives (Haidt, 2012, pg XX to XXI).

Haidt also writes on page 50:

As brains get larger and more complex, animals begin to show more cognitive sophistication – choices (such as where to forage today, or when to fly south) and judgments (such as whether a subordinate chimpanzee showed proper differential behavior). But in all cases, the basic psychology is pattern matching.

It’s the sort of rapid, automatic and effortless processing that drives our perceptions in the Muller-Lyer Illusion. You can’t choose whether or not to see the illusion, you’re just “seeing that” one line is longer than the other. Margolis also called this kind of thinking “intuitive”.

This shows that moral reasoning came about due to a bigger brain and that the choices and judgments we make  evolved because they better ensured our fitness, not due to ethics.

Moral reasoning evolved for us to increase our fitness on this earth. The field of ethics justifies what benefits group and kin selection with minimal harm to the individual. That is, the explanations people make through moral reasoning are just post hoc searches for people to justify their gut feelings, which they cannot think of a reason why they have them.

Source: The Righteous Mind: Why Good People Are Divided By Politics and Religion

Science Proves It: Fat-shaming Doesn’t Work

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Milo Yiannopoulos published an article yesterday saying that “fat-shaming works”. It’s clear that the few papers he cites he didn’t read correctly while disregarding the other studies stating the opposite saying “there is only one serious study”. There is a growing body of research that says otherwise.

He first claims that with the knowledge of what he is going to show will have you armed with the facts so that you can hurl all the insults you want at fat people and genuinely be helping them. This is objectively wrong.

In the study he’s citing, the researchers used a quantitative analysis using semi-structured interview data (which is used when subjects are seen only one time and are instructed by the researchers what the guidelines of the experiment will be in order to get the reliable, comparable, and quality data) on 40 adolescents who lost at least 10 pounds and maintained their weight loss for at least a year. This guideline came from Wing and Hill (2001) who say that maintaining a 10 percent weight loss for one year is successful maintenance. He claims that the abstract says that bullying by the peer group induces weight loss. Though, it’s clear that he didn’t read the abstract correctly because it says:

In contrast to existing literature, our findings suggest that primary motivating factors for adolescent weight loss may be intrinsic (e.g., desire for better health, desire to improve self-worth) rather than extrinsic. In addition, life transitions (e.g., transition to high school) were identified as substantial motivators for weight-related behavior change. Peer and parental encouragement and instrumental support were widely endorsed as central to success. The most commonly endorsed weight loss maintenance strategies included attending to dietary intake and physical activity levels, and making self-corrections when necessary.

Peer encouragement and instrumental support were two variables that are the keys to success in childhood weight loss maintenance, not fat-shaming as he claims.

The same study found that obese people were more likely to lose weight around “life transitions,” like starting high school. In other words, people start to worry about how others will see them, especially when they need to make a good first impression. Fear of social judgement is key. So keep judging them. 

The study didn’t find that at all. In fact, it found the opposite.

Dr. Fred Pescatore says:

According to a new study, while most teens’ weight loss attempts don’t work, the ones who do lose weight successfully, quite simply, do it for themselves, rather than to please their (bullying) peers or (over-pressuring) parents.

He then cites a paper from the UCLA stating that social pressure on the obese (fat-shaming) will lead to positive changes. Some of the pressures referenced are:

If you are overweight or obese, are you pleased with the way you look?

Are you happy that your added weight has made many ordinary activities, such as walking up a long flight of stairs, harder?

The average fat person would say no to the first two.

Are you pleased when your obese children are called “fatty” or otherwise teased at school?

Fair or not, do you know that many people look down upon those excessively overweight or obese, often in fact discriminating against them and making fun of them or calling them lazy and lacking in self-control?

Self-control has a genetic component.In a 30 year follow-up to the Marshmallow Experiment, those who lacked self-control during pre-school had a higher chance of becoming obese 30 years later. Analyzing self-reported heights and weights of those who participated in the follow-up (n=164, 57 percent women), the researchers found that the duration of the delay on the gratification task accounted for 4 percent of the variance in BMI between the subjects, which, according to the researchers, was responsible for a significant portion of the variation in the subjects. The researchers also found that each additional minute they delayed gratification that there was a .2 reduction in BMI.

Why? Because people change their health and dietary habits to mimic that of their friends and loved ones, especially if they spend lots of time around them. Peer pressure encourages people to look like the people they admire and whose company they enjoy. Unless there’s a more powerful source of social pressure (say, fat shaming) from the rest of society, of course.

Not even thinking of the genetic component. The increase in similarity relative to strangers is on the level of 4th cousins. Thus, since ‘dietary habits are mimicked by friends and family’, what’s really going on is genotypic matching and that, not socialization, is the cause for friends and family mimicking diets.

There is only one serious study, from University College London, that suggests fat-shaming doesn’t work, and it’s hopelessly flawed. Firstly, it’s based on survey data — relying on fat people to be honest about their weight and diets. Pardon the pun, but … fat chance!

Moreover, the study defines “weight discrimination” much like feminists define “misogyny,” extending it to a dubiously wide range of behaviours, including “being treated poorly in shops.” The study also takes survey answers from 50-year olds and tries to apply them to all adults. But in what world do 20-year-olds behave the same way as older people?

The paper he cites, Perceived Weight Discrimination and Changes in Weight, Waist Circumference, and Weight Statusdoes say what he claims. However, the researchers do say that due to having a sample of people aged 50 and older that it wasn’t applicable to younger populations (as well as other ethnicities, this sample being 97.9 percent white). (Which you can tell he did not read, and if he did he omitted this section.)

The researchers found that 5.1 percent of the participants reported being discriminated on the basis of their weight. They discovered that those who experienced weight discrimination were more likely to engage in behaviors that promoted weight gain, and were more likely to see an increase in weight and waist circumference. Also observed, was that weight discrimination was a factor in early onset obesity.

Present research indicates that in addition to poorer mental health outcomes, weight discrimination has implications for obesity. Rather than motivating people to lose weight, weight discrimination increases the risk for obesity. Sutin and Terraciano (2013) conclude that though fat shaming is thought to have a positive effect on weight loss and maintenance, it is, in reality, associated with maintenance of obesity. Also seen in this sample of over 6,000 people was that those who experienced weight discrimination were 2.5 times more likely to become obese in the next few years.Further, obese subjects were 3.2 times as likely to remain obese over the next few years.

Sutin et al (2014) also showed how weight discrimination can lead to “poor subjective health, greater disease burden, lower life satisfaction and greater loneliness at both assessments and with declines in health across the four years”.

Puhl and Heuer (2010) says that weight discrimination is not a tool for obesity prevention and that stigmatization of the obese leads to threatened health, the generation of health disparities and, most importantly, it interferes with effective treatments.

Tomiyama (2014) showed that any type of fat shaming leads to an increase in weight and caloric consumption.

Shvey, Puhl, and Brownell (2011) found in a sample of 73 overweight women, that those who watched a video in which weight discrimination occurred ate 3 times as many calories than those who did not see the video. The authors conclude that despite people claiming that weight discrimination works for weight loss, the results of the study showed that it leads to overeating, which directly challenges the (wrong) perception on weight discrimination being positive for weight loss.

Participants were from an older population, in which weight change and experiences of weight discrimination may differ relative to younger populations so findings cannot be assumed to generalize

Puhl and King (2013) show that weight discrimination and bullying during childhood can lead to “depression, anxiety, low self-esteem, body dissatisfaction, suicidal ideation, poor academic performance, lower physical activity, maladaptive eating behaviors, and avoidance of health care.”

I expect we’ll see more of these pseudo-studies, and not just because academics tend to be lefties. Like climate scientists before them, I suspect a substantial number of “fat researchers” will simply choose to follow the political winds, and the grant money that follows them, rather than seeking the truth.

He is denying the negative implications of fat-shaming, disregarding the ‘one study’ (or so he claims) that shows the opposite of what he cited (which he didn’t read fully). I also like how these studies are called ‘pseudo-studies’ when the conclusion that’s found is a conclusion he doesn’t like. Really objective journalism there.

The reverse is also true. Just being around attractive women raises a man’s testosterone.

The researchers say that talking with a beautiful woman for five minutes led to  14 percent increase in testosterone and a 48 percent increase in cortisol, the anti-stress hormone.

Of course, this has its grounds in evolution. When two people are attracted to each other, they begin to mimic each other’s movements and using the same body language unconsciously. The researchers he cited concluded that “women may release steroid hormones to facilitate courtship interactions with  high-value men“. This, of course, has an evolutionary basis. Women seek the best mate that will be able to provide the most for them. Men and women who are more attractive are also more intelligent on average with the reverse holding true for fat people, who are uglier and less intelligent on average.

Though it would be to un-PC to conduct an experiment proving it, it stands to reason that looking at fat, ugly people depresses testosterone. This is certainly how any red-blooded man feels when looking at a hamplanet.

Depressed testosterone is associated with many negative health outcomes, and thus the mere presence of fat people is actively harming the population’s health — particularly men’s, since we’re more visual. We ban public smoking based on the minuscule effects of “passive” intake, so why aren’t the same lefty, public-health aware politicians clamouring for a ban on fat people being seen in public?

A study conducted on people’s hormonal response to the obese and overweight may indeed show a decrease in testosterone and cortisol. Though, these hormonal responses are temporary, which he doesn’t say.

Instead, the same lefties who want to stop us having fags or drinking too much in public (and even alcoholics and chain smokers are healthier than the obese) are the same ones urging the authorities to treat “fat-shaming” as a crime and investigate it. Insane!

There are, contrary to popular belief, obese people who are metabolically healthy. Blüher (2012) reviewed the data on obese patients and found that 30 percent of them were metabolically healthy with the obese patients having similar levels of insulin sensitivity similar to lean individuals.

Moreover, new research has found that having a BMI of 27 leads to a decrease in mortality. In a huge study of over 120,000 people, the researchers gathered people from Copenhagen, Denmark, recruiting people from 1976 to 2013. They were then separately compared to those who were recruited in the 70s, 90s, and 00s. Surprisingly, the BMI linked with the lowest risk of having died from any cause was 23.7 in the 70s, 24.6 in the 90s, and 27 from 2003-2013. Due to the results of this study, the researchers are arguing that BMI categories may need adjusting.

As shown in that 2014 study, young people in particular are concerned about what their peers think about them, especially when they start high school. That’s why it’s so critical to let them know that their instincts are correct, and that they can’t be “healthy at any size.”

If you can be unhealthy at any size, why can’t you be ‘healthy at any size’? As I’ve shown, those with a BMI of 27, on average, are metabolically similar to those with to those with lower BMIs. Since, in the study previously cited, BMI increased while mortality decreased, technological advancements in caring for diseases, such as Diabetes Mellitus, improved, this is one possible explanation for this.

Those with a BMI under 25 may still suffer from negative effects, the same as obese people. They may suffer from metabolic syndrome, high triglycerides, low HDL, small LDL particles, high blood sugar and high insulin. Those who are skinny fat need to worry more about their vital organs, as the fat deposits they carry are white fat which is wrapped around the vital organs in the body. These are some of the reasons why being skinny fat can be more dangerous than being obese or overweight: they think that because their BMI is in the ‘normal range’ that they’re fine and healthy. Clearly, sometimes even being ‘underlean’ can have serious consequences worse than obesity.

Then he brings up smoke shaming and bills being passed to stop smokers from smoking in certain public areas lead to a decrease in smoking, so fat shaming makes sense in that manner.

Except it doesn’t.

Humans need to eat, we don’t need to smoke. Moreover, since the rising rates in obesity coincide with the increase in height, it has been argued by some researchers that having an obese population is just a natural progression of first world societies.

Fat shaming doesn’t work. It, ironically, makes the problem worse. The physiological components involved with eating are a factor as well. It is known that the brain scans of the obese and those addicted to cocaine mirror each other. With this knowledge of food changing the brain, we can think of other avenues that do not involve shaming people for their weight, which increases the problem we all hate.


Individual and Racial Differences in IQ and Allele Frequencies

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In the past 100 years since the inception of the IQ test there have been racial differences in test scores. What causes these score differences? Genetics? Environment? Both? Recently it has come out that populations do differ in allele frequencies that affect intelligence. David Piffer’s “forbidden paper on population genetics and IQ” was rejected by the new editor of the journal Intelligence. In the paper, he shows how IQ alleles vary in frequency by population. One reviewer even said it should not be put up for review, which Piffer believes there was a hidden agenda or a closed minded attitude. He even puts reviewers comments and responds to them. He says science should be transparent, which is why he’s showing the researchers’ comments on his paper.

His December, 2015 paper titled: A review of intelligence GWAS hits: Their relationship to country IQ and the issue of spatial autocorrelation shows that there are differing allele frequencies in which IQ between populations that affect IQ which are then correlated highly with average IQ by country (r=.92, factor analysis showed a correlation of .86). There was also a “positive and significant correlation between the 9 SNPs metagene and IQ”(pg. 45). However, Piffer does conclude that since the 9 alleles are present within all populations (Africans, Latin Americans, Europeans, South Asians, and East Asians) that the intelligence polymorphisms don’t appear to be race-specific, but were already present in Homo Sapiens before the migration out of Africa. He then goes on to say that it’s extremely likely that the vast majority of alleles were subject do differential selection pressure which lead increases in cognitive abilities at different rates rates in different geographical areas (pg. 49). It’s of course known that differing populations faced differing selection pressures which then lead to genotypic changes which then affected the phenotype. It’s not surprising that genes that correlate strongly with intelligence have differing frequencies in different geographical populations; it’s to be expected with what we know about evolution and natural selection. Below is the scatter plot showing the relationship between polygenic score GWAS (Genome Wide Association Studies) hits and IQ:

Scatter plot IQ-polygenic score

The fact that these differences exist should not come as a shock to those who want to seek the truth, but as seen with how David Piffer didn’t even get consideration for a revision, this shows the bias in science to studies such as this that show racial differences in intelligence exist.

Piffer’s data also corroborates Lynn and Meisenberg’s (2010) finding of a correlation of .907 with measured and estimated IQ. This shows that the differing allele frequencies affect IQ, which then affect a countries GDP, GNP, and over all quality of life.

With a sample with a huge n (over 100,000 subjects) cognitive abilities tests were performed on verbal-numerical reasoning, memory and reaction time (a huge correlate for IQ itself, see Rushton and Jensen, 2005). Davies et al (2016) discovered that there were significant genome-wide SNP based associations in 20 genomic regions, with significant gene-based regions on 46 loci!! Once we find definitive proof that intelligence differences vary between individuals, as well as the loci and genomic regions responsible, we can then move on to difference in allele frequency in depth (which Piffer 2015 was one of the starts to this project).

Moreover, genes that influence intelligence determine how well axons are encased in myelin, which is the fatty insulation that coats our axons, allowing for fast signaling to the brain. Thicker myelin also means faster nerve impulses. The researchers used HARDI to measure water diffusion in the brain. If the water diffuses rapidly in one direction, that shows the brain has very fast connections. Whereas a more broad diffusion would indicate slower signaling, thus lower intelligence. It basically gives us a picture of an individuals mental speed. Thinking of reaction time tests where Asians beat whites who beat blacks, this could possibly show how differing process times between populations manifest itself in reaction time. Since myelin is correlated with fast connections, we can make the inference that Asians have more than whites who have more than blacks, on average. The researchers also say that it’s a long time from now, but we may be able to increase intelligence by manipulating the genes responsible for myelin. This leads me to believe that there must be racial differences in myelin as well, following Rushton’s Rule of Three.

Since the mother’s IQ is the best predictor of the child’s IQ, this should really end the debate on its own. Sure on average, intelligent black mothers would birth intelligent children, but due to regression to the mean, the children would be less intelligent than the mother. JP Rushton also says that regression works in the opposite way. Both blacks and whites who fall below their racial means will have children who regress to the means of 85 and 100 respectively, showing the reality of the genetic mean in IQ between the races.

Why would differing allele frequencies lead to the same cognitive processes in the brain in genetically isolated populations? I’ve shown that brain circuits vary by IQ genes, and populations do differ in this aspect, like all other differing genotypic/phenotypic traits.

East Asians have bigger brains, as shown by MRI studies. Rushton and Rushton (2001) showed that the three races differ in IQ, brain size, and 37 different musculoskeletal traits. We know that West Africans and West African-descended people have genes for fast twitch muscle fibers (Type II) (Nielson and Christenson, 2001). Europeans and East Asians have slow twitch muscle fibers (Type I) for strength and endurance. (East Africans have this as well, which allows for ability to run for distance, which fast twitch fibers do not allow for. The same is true for slow twitch fibers and sprinting events.) Bengt Saltin showed that European distance runners have up to 90 percent slow twitch fibers (see Entine, 2000)! So are genetic IQ differentials really that hard to believe? With all of these differing variables in regards to intelligence that all point to a strong genetic cause for individual differences in other genes that lead to stark phenotypic differences between the races, is it really not plausible that populations differ in intelligence, which is largely inherited?

Is it really plausible that differing populations would be the same cognitvely? That they would have the same capacity for intelligence? Even when evolution occurred  in differing climates?  The races/ethnicities differ on so many different variables with differing genes being responsible for it. Would IQ genes really be out of the question? Evolution didn’t stop from the neck up. Different populations faced different selection pressures, so different human traits then evolved for better adaption in that environment. Different traits clearly developed in genetically isolated populations that had no gene flow with each other for tens of thousands of years. These differing evolutionary environments for the races put different pressures on them, selecting some for high IQ alleles and others for low IQ alleles.

We are coming to a time where intelligence differences between populations will become an irrefutable fact. With better technology to see how differing genes or sets of genes affect our mind as well as physiology, we will see that most all human differences will come down to differing allele frequencies along with differing gene expression. Following Rushton’s simple rule based on over 60 variables, East Asians will have the most high IQ alleles followed by Europeans and then blacks. The whole battery of different cognitive abilities tests that have been conducted over the past 100 years show us that there are differences, yet we haven’t been able to fully explain it by GWAS and other similar techniques. Charles Murray says within the next 5 to 10 years we will have definitive proof that IQ genes exist. After that, it’s only a matter of time before it comes out that racial differences in IQ are due to differing allele frequency as well as gene expression.

How to Use Current Knowledge to Effectively Treat the Symptoms of PWS Patients

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Researchers have tried to manage those with Prader-Willi’s Syndrome for multiple decades. Though they have greatly curbed some of the implications of the disease, there are still numerous ways in which we can better use our knowledge of how the disease manifests in order to better help those suffering from PWS. Looking at research into how the extra chromosome 15 is linked to low IQ; IQ and its relationship to obesity; how the ability to delay gratification leads to obesity; growth hormone treatment to better treat low muscle mass and higher body fat; and finally using reinforcement theory to punish a response, where doing so will greatly diminish the probability of that response occurring again in the future; all of these factors can be used in conjunction to better mitigate problems from the disease. By examining all of these variables and thinking of better ways to handle them, we can then think of other, better ways to manage those with PWS. In doing so, we can better increase the quality of life of those suffering from PWS, as well as have less of a strain on healthcare workers who care for them. With new advances in technology with CRISPR Cas9, we can then edit the genomes and chromosomes of those suffering from this disease.


How to Use Current Knowledge to Effectively Treat and Manage the Symptoms of PWS Patients

How can we use the research on chromosomal differences, research on their IQ differences and their lack of ability to delay gratification that, in turn, would help those individuals with the disease?  Seventy percent of PWS cases are attributed to the deletion of chromosome 15 (Ledbetter et al, 1981). Maternal uniparental disomy, which involves receiving an extra chromosome 15 from the mother, is yet another cause of PWS (Wang, 2004).

Whittington, Holland and Webb (2009) found that there was variation between families in deletion of chromosome 15. They found that the PWS and sibling IQ correlation was .3, a modest correlation.  What was also noticed was that there were subtype differences which manifested itself in the familial differences in IQ. As they expected, the correlation with normal siblings and those with PWS was .5 in those who suffered from PWS due to unilateral disomy. But in the second subset (the chromosomal deletion subset), the correlation was negative at -0.07. Their research shows great promise in the role of chromosome 15 and IQ. They end up concluding that there needs to be an explanation for the small genetic differences between them. How can we use these differences in IQ to help people with PWS and what does this suggest for other symptoms of their disease?

Kanazawa (2014), reviewed the data on the research between obesity and IQ. What he found was that those studies that concluded that obesity causes lowered intelligence only observed cross-sectional studies. Longitudinal studies that looked into the link between obesity and intelligence found that those who had low IQs since childhood then became obese later in life and that obesity does not lead to low IQ.  The average IQ for an individual suffering from PWS is 65 (Butler, Lee and Whitman 2006, p. 13), so that is one reason they have a tendency to be obese. He states that those with IQs below 74 gained 5.19 BMI points, whereas those with IQs over above 126 gained 3.73 BMI points in 22 years, which is a statistically significant difference. Also noted, was that those at age 7 who had IQs above 125 had a 13.5 percent chance of being obese at age 51, whereas those with IQs below 74 at age 7 had a 31.9 percent chance of being obese. This data makes it clear: low IQ is correlated with obesity, so we, therefore, need to find sufficient measures to help those with lower IQs who also suffer from PWS to better maintain their good health. Since we can better identify those PWS individuals who have lower IQs based on how they got the disease, we can then show them more attention in an effort to have them manage their gratification better. Moreover, the lack of ability to delay gratification is also correlated with low IQ (Mischel, Ebbeson, and Zeiss, 1972).

Schlam et al. (2013) observed in a follow-up study to the Marshmallow Experiment that found in a longitudinal study of individuals they found forty years later from the original Marshmallow Experiment, due to inability to delay gratification forty years previously, that was one cause of becoming obese forty years later. Due to PWS sufferers having lower average IQs, and, therefore, a lack of ability to delay their gratification, this is direct evidence that those PWS sufferers with low IQs need more stringent measures to be taken on them, which would then be helpful to those individuals who have a hard time delaying their gratification, which is partially caused by the drop in IQ due to the additional chromosome 15. We can see how those with PWS act; they want their gratification now and do not want to wait for it. This is why, when unsupervised, that those with PWS gorge on the food they understand they should not have, but do so, nevertheless, since their low IQ is correlated with lack of ability to delay gratification, which manifests itself in their obesity. We clearly need to find better methods in which to help those with low ability to delay gratification, which would strongly help those suffering from PWS.

Dykens et al (1997) note that those with PWS have hyperphagia, which correlates with their insatiable want for food. They state that the lack of fullness is due to an altered function of the hypothalamus, which is the part of the brain that is in control of feelings of satiety. Certain States gave restrictions to homes that take care of those with PWS and have come under fire because of this, mainly due to human rights violations. We must ask, then, should we limit their access to food if it will prolong their lives? Will doing so inhibit their freedom to do as they choose? PWS sufferers also have coronary heart problems; one could argue that given their free ability to choose what they want to do unfettered will lead to premature death due to obesity-related complications. Does their disease truly not allow them to learn the consequences of their behavior? Do they have the intellect to really understand the consequences of their actions of consuming too much food? There is no established or known way to control those with insatiable eating habits due to hyperphagia. So would the best course of action to take with those with PWS actually be to constantly monitor them and to lock access to easily attainable food? My answer is yes, however, there is a clear fine line in whether restricting access to food and constantly monitoring those with PWS infringes on their human rights, or that doing so actually will help them live better, healthier lives since they would have the constant supervision around them to better control their out of control eating habits. When negative actions occur, one idea that can be shown to them is constant positive reinforcement so that they may be better able to understand that what they are doing is harmful to their bodies. We can then use positive reinforcement when they do reach a healthy weight, so, in turn, they will have a higher chance of keeping a healthy weight. They may reap the benefits of positive reinforcement, and stick more closely to their program, and therefore, stay healthy.

The hormone ghrelin is secreted from the hypothalamus. With an altered hypothalamus, this would cause ghrelin levels to overload; then the individual suffering from PWS would feel the need to insatiably gorge on food due to this chemical imbalance in the brain. Ghrelin increased feeding in rats and ghrelin is the physiological mediator of feeding and probably has a function in growth regulation by stimulating feeding and release of growth hormone (Nakazato et al, 2001). There is a correlation between want of food, ghrelin release and growth hormone production. By attempting to mediate these variables, those who suffer from PWS will be able to better control their eating habits through positive reinforcement and better, more sustainable habits. Since whenever we eat we get a release of ghrelin that makes us hungry, people pretty much set their own eating times by eating multiple times a day. This affects PWS patients the same way. They can’t stop eating, due in part to constantly eating which constantly releases ghrelin in their body.

PWS sufferers have low muscle tone and, conversely, more body fat. Growth hormones may be a valid way of alleviating that problem, which in turn will give them a slightly higher resting metabolic rate so that they may burn slightly more calories, in an effort to stay healthier. Growth hormone therapy is great for those with PWS though they are largely inactive and lead a sedentary lifestyle, the growth hormone will allow them to have less body fat and more muscle mass. As noted earlier in my paper, those suffering from PWS have altered function in their hypothalamus, which is also where growth hormone is secreted. Aycan and Bas (2014) state that treatment with growth hormones should be strongly considered for those with PWS.

PWS sufferers are also quick to anger, which can be correlated with their sub-average IQ. They may, for instance, become irate at the fact that they do not have constant access to food, and may turn to emotional, angry and infantile outbursts in an attempt to receive what they want. This is one way that it’s tricky to treat those with the disease. How do you tell an individual with PWS who wants something “No”? Measures should be taken to show those with the disease what they are doing to their bodies in the simplest way possible as to better get the point across to them. We can help those sufferers of PWS who are quick to anger with by allowing them to discern between right and wrong ways to handle times when they don’t get what they want with positive reinforcement.

Since those who suffer from PWS have behavioral problems, there are better measures we can take to assure that they don’t have their violent outbursts. When positive reinforcement is consistently shown to an individual who has PWS, he will have more success with his program. When they do something wrong, they can then be shown positive reinforcement, and through being shown positive things with reinforcement theory, they can better learn that certain actions they take are dangerous and shouldn’t be done again, as Rushton (1980) states: “If one rewards a response, it will increase the probability of the future occurrence of that response. If one punishes a response, it will decrease the future probability of the occurrence of that response.” (p. 90).


In this paper, I have presented causes for PWS as well as effective ways to manage the disease. To look at how IQ affects individuals in regards to obesity and because it is highly correlated with other measures as well, we can then better help those with the disease. By seeing which individuals have the parental disomy version of PWS, we can then monitor them and give them better care because of their lowered IQ and make sure they stay at a healthy weight. One of the best measures to take is to heavily restrict food, i.e., make sure ability to access food at all hours of the day is restricted along with constant supervision. Though, there are rights groups fighting for them saying that their human rights are being infringed on. In allowing them to have free reign over what, how and when they eat, they will gorge themselves to obesity, as well as lead themselves to horrible complications that come along with increased food consumption. When one is caught consuming food he or she shouldn’t be consuming, punishing them and letting them understand that the behavior they took was wrong will lead to better choices and outcomes from those choices, due in part to the main facet of reinforcement theory, that punishing a response will lead to a reduced outcome in that response that was punished happening in the future. Also, with the advent of CRISPR Cas9, we will be able to edit genomes, and therefore, eventually, put an end to PWS. It will enable us to fix the chromosomal deletion and uniparental disomy, which will eradicate this disease.


There are better, more helpful ways in which to help those suffering from PWS. By identifying and attempting to correct these abnormalities, those who suffer from the disease can, therefore, have a better quality of life due in part to the extra measures taken. By understanding that their lower average IQs lead to a lot of the problems associated with the disease, we can better structure methods for them to keep on a healthy track and reinforce positive behavior through reinforcement theory. Since obesity is correlated highly with low IQ, we can, therefore, use this information to better help those who suffer from PWS that have low IQs. Locking up food instead of providing free access, as well as understanding they do not have the ability to delay gratification, would be a big start to find better ways to treat sufferers of PWS. Treating negative actions with positive reinforcement through reinforcement theory will lead to better and increased prosocial behavior. It’s been shown that if you punish a response, then it will decrease the future probability of that response occurring. The advent of CRISPR Cas9 will then allow us to edit the chromosomes of those with this disease in the future. Should we use genome editing on individuals with this disease, as well as several other chromosomal/genetic diseases? I believe we should, in doing so, we will greatly increase the quality of life of those with the disease.



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