linkfest – 06/17/12

More on Farming and Inheritance Systems – Part I: IQ – from jayman!

Spanish cave paintings shown as oldest in world“New tests show that crude Spanish cave paintings of a red sphere and handprints are the oldest in the world, so ancient they may not have been by modern man. Some scientists say they might have even been made by the much-maligned Neanderthals, but others disagree.”

Childhood obesity found linked to math performance“When compared with children who were never obese, boys and girls whose obesity persisted from the start of kindergarten through fifth grade performed worse on the math test, starting in first grade, and their lower performance continued through fifth grade. For boys whose obesity emerged later (in third or fifth grade), no such differences were found, and for girls who became obese later, poorer math performance was temporary.”

Why Smart People Are Stupid“[I]ntelligence seems to make things worse. The scientists gave the students four measures of ‘cognitive sophistication.’ As they report in the paper, all four of the measures showed positive correlations, ‘indicating that more cognitively sophisticated participants showed larger [cognitive] bias blind spots.'”

Another look at Muslim fertility – from the inductivist.

Spot the Correlation: Wealth vs. Immigration – from dennis.

Scientists Sequence Genome Of Human Relative That Prefers Love Over War“They found that more than 3 percent of the human genome is more closely related to either the bonobo or the chimpanzee than the two apes are to each other, which indicates that the three species share a complex evolutionary relationship.”

bonus: ‘Sexual depravity’ of penguins that Antarctic scientist dared not reveal“Landmark polar research about the Adélie penguin’s sex life by Captain Scott’s expedition, deemed too shocking for the public 100 years ago, is unearthed at the Natural History Museum”

bonus bonus: ‘Oldest galaxy’ discovered using Hawaii telescope“Japanese astronomers on Hawaii say they have found a galaxy 12.91bn light years away”

bonus bonus bonus: That Squid On Your Plate Could Inseminate Your Mouth – ewww!

(note: comments do not require an email. aaaaaaaah!)


  1. About the “Why Smart People Are Stupid,” crystallized g, as the type measured by the SAT, is in essence a compilation of mental shortcuts. Most problems are too complex to solve in a brute-force manner (especially on the fly), so the brain relies on heuristics. This is the basis of “learning” most things. Hence I would not be surprised that smart people are more susceptible to such tricks; they have amassed a far greater number of mental shortcuts. I’ve always been vulnerable to such things, in that once I’ve gotten a shortcut, I’ve really got it, and I tend to over-rely on them, leading to a few dumb mistakes here and there.

    @Luke, yup, that’s definitely a good discussion on a somewhat different, but interesting phenomenon. Typical liberals, many philosophers, communists, and libertarians fall into that Charlton’s category.


  2. @Spanish cave paintings shown as oldest in world

    Hand-prints are made by blowing ochre powder out of mouth like a spray-paint can.

    Compare handprints to ones in Australia

    Wilgie Mia Ochre mine in Australia
    “world’s oldest Aboriginal ochre mine
    …used for 30,000 years”

    Wilgie Mia Aboriginal Ochre Mine more information
    “around 19,600 cubic metres of ochre and rock weighing around 40,000 tonnes has been removed. ”

    Oldest ochre mine in Africa:
    Lion Cave in Swaziland
    “about 43,000 years old.
    …mined hematite
    …and ground it up to produce red ochre pigment
    …removed over 100,000 tons of material from the site.
    …human skeletons in the rubble…dated to 20,000 B.C.”


  3. re: More on Farming and Inheritance Systems – Part I: IQ – from jayman!

    Jayman, I’ve tried to post a comment on your site twice but the obstacles are great. So for the third time, before you write up East Asia you might have a look at the book, The Pattern of the Chinese Past, by Mark Elvin. It is a lucidly written description of the ever changing yet oft repeating patterns of land ownership patterns in China over past 2500 years with special emphasis on relations between the rich and the poor. At various times and places the peasants had the status of chattel slaves, serfs bound to the soil, indentured servants, yeoman farmers, share croppers, renters (both resident and non-resident on the landlords land), day laborers, soldiers (!), runaways, robbers, rebels, and so on.


  4. Interesting that the same penguins which were observed to have homosexual relations were also engaged in all other kinds of antisocial behavior. That doesn’t seem to help the group selection hypothesis.

    A hilarious blurb from wikipedia about penguin homosexuality:

    Bremerhaven Zoo in Germany attempted to encourage reproduction of endangered Humbolt penguins by importing females from Sweden and separating three male pairs, but this was unsuccessful. The zoo’s director said that the relationships were “too strong” between the homosexual pairs.[41] German gay groups protested at this attempt to break up the male-male pairs[42] but the zoo’s director was reported as saying “We don’t know whether the three male pairs are really homosexual or whether they have just bonded because of a shortage of females… nobody here wants to forcibly separate homosexual couples.”[43]

    Encouraging normal sexual behavior to save an endangered species… STOP THAT, IT’S OFFENSIVE!


  5. @luke – “‘Clever Sillies – Why the high IQ lack common sense'”

    don’t think bruce is right on this one. i think he’s mixed up 1) clever but odd scientist types and 2) political correctness. pc is just the herding behavior of the masses like any other group belief. clever but odd scientist types are simply … odd. (~_^) usually ass-burgers and/or schizo-type people. most people who believe in pc ideas are definitely NOT the latter type of people.


  6. @melykin – “I wonder if the study about obesity and math ability controlled for race.”

    hmmm. dunno. don’t have access to the research article.

    what i wondered, of course, is: does being fat as a kid give you a low-iq, or are low-iq people, on average, just fatter?


  7. @bleach – “Encouraging normal sexual behavior to save an endangered species… STOP THAT, IT’S OFFENSIVE!”

    it’s practically waaaaycist! (^_^)


  8. @szopeno:

    No it wasn’t just you. Apparently the colon in the was missing from a few, and that was the problem. I’ve fixed them up now, thanks for bringing it to my attention.

    And to both you and Luke, I’ve changed the settings so that commenting should be a bit easier. Hopefully this makes things better. :)

    I’ll be a bit busy over the next few days so I may be a bit slow to reply.


  9. -hbd* chk – “political correctness. pc is just the herding behavior of the masses like any other group belief . . .”

    versus “The cognitively-stratified context of communicating almost-exclusively with others of similar intelligence, generates opinions and behaviours among the highest IQ people which are not just lacking in common sense but perversely wrong. Hence the phenomenon of ‘political correctness’ (PC); whereby false and foolish ideas have come to dominate, and moralistically be enforced upon, the ruling elites of whole nations.”

    I guess this calls for a history of the origins of political correctness (and its cousins, multiculturalism, free trade, open borders). I’m pretty sure these are elite phenomena promulgated through the media, though with big money support (e, -interest of the rich).

    Ordinary people are not politically correct if you go by the polls: gay marriage, immigration, free trade, etc.


  10. @luke – “OT, but does a society’s tolerating torture correlate with inbreeding?”

    heh! (i probably shouldn’t find that funny.)

    i don’t know, but my guess is going to be … yup.


  11. @luke – “I guess this calls for a history of the origins of political correctness (and its cousins, multiculturalism, free trade, open borders). I’m pretty sure these are elite phenomena promulgated through the media, though with big money support (e, -interest of the rich).”

    you’re probably right. the part of dr. charlton’s thesis that i reacted to was this:

    “In previous editorials I have written about the absent-minded and socially-inept ‘nutty professor’ stereotype in science, and the phenomenon of ‘psychological neoteny’ whereby intelligent modern people (including scientists) decline to grow-up and instead remain in a state of perpetual novelty-seeking adolescence.”

    the first part of the sentence is very right, i think — there are absent-minded, socially inept “nutty professor” types who display “psychological neoteny” — but that, i think, is a refelction of the fact that a lot of scientists are aspergian types who are slow developers (it’s a developmental disorder, after all). they (we) do lack “common sense … especially when it comes to dealing with other human beings.”

    but the majority of intelligent modern people are not like this. your typical swpls might have high iqs, but they are not socially inept. quite the reverse. they are just neurotypicals with high iqs. they are herders like most people.

    that’s where dr. charlton got it wrong, i think — mixing up scientists — real scientists, not the goulds of the world — with the majority. practically different species, really. different sub-species, definitely. (~_^)


  12. Luke Lea
    “OT, but does a society’s tolerating torture correlate with inbreeding?”

    I’d say yes but also in thinking about it it suddenly struck me why ancient diplomacy always involved swapping hostages.


  13. Reversing the question, are there any societies which don’t tolerate torture with high inbreeding?


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