Lion of the Blogosphere

Archive for March 2019

Is Joe Biden being #metooed out of the race?

Written by Lion of the Blogosphere

March 29, 2019 at EDT pm

Posted in Politics

Suntans and work

Classically, suntans were low class because they meant working-class outdoors jobs. But then, when air travel meant that rich people could go on vacation in warm sunny climates, suntans became high class. I am pretty sure that the invention of tanning salons has caused them to become prole again. Jersey Shore types typically sport fake tans.

It is the same with work and leisure. Certain commenters have wrongly asserted that being rich means not having to work, but that’s outdated by a century. With welfare and other public assistance making non-work more viable than ever for the lower classes, the higher classes distinguish themselves with their work ethic.

Of course people don’t want to do just any sort of work, they want work that’s meaningful and that increases their status. And being able to obtain that sort of job requires elite educational credentials and the right connections. So we are moving from a world in which poor people work because otherwise they will starve to death, to a world where working is a privilege for the rich and well connected while poor people will live off of Andrew Yang’s “Freedom Dividend.”

Work becomes not just a source of income that’s used to buy positional goods, but a positional good in its own right.

Written by Lion of the Blogosphere

March 29, 2019 at EDT pm

Posted in Bobos, Labor Markets

Jussie Smollett update

According to TMZ, sources connected to Rahm Emanuel say that the city is definitely going to sue Smollett for the $130,000, and Smollett insists he’s innocent and refuses to settle, so it looks like a courtroom showdown is going to happen!

The great thing here is that, as correctly pointed out by TMZ, a civil trial means that the trier of fact only has to find Smollett liable based on a preponderance of the evidence, and not beyond a reasonable doubt.

Written by Lion of the Blogosphere

March 29, 2019 at EDT pm

Posted in Law

19 years of being an Amazon.com customer

Before I had broadband. I bought this book using dial-up! (Or maybe I bought it from work, which did have broadband.)

Written by Lion of the Blogosphere

March 29, 2019 at EDT am

Posted in Books, Technology

How to destroy the power of universities

Coming up with a collection of policy proposals that I’ve previously blogged about.

1. Abolish degrees as much as possible. People should attend college to learn, and they should stay as long as they feel they need to, although federal student aid should stop after a certain number of years.

It should be illegal to discriminate against someone because they don’t have a degree, just as it’s illegal to discriminate against people based on race, sex, etc. Technically this is already the law because the Supreme Court in Griggs v. Duke Power Company (1971) held that it was illegal for Duke Power Company to make a high school degree a requirement for getting a job. The Supreme Court wrote, “History is filled with examples of men and women who rendered highly effective performance without the conventional badges of accomplishment in terms of certificates, diplomas, or degrees.”

But this aspect of Griggs has been ignored, so Congress must pass a law stating explicitly that it’s illegal to discriminate on the basis of degrees.

2. The government should not provide any direct or indirect aid (as in student grants or loans) to any university that has exclusive admissions. When an institution has more applicants than they have room for, they must use a lottery system.

3. Federal student aid should be contingent on proof of successful learning. After taking a course, a student must pass a national test demonstrating knowledge in order to qualify for additional student aid for more education. Of course we need to make sure the tests are administered securely so that test takers don’t cheat on them.

I favor increased federal grants for students who can score high enough on the tests of knowledge so that education is available for all who can demonstrate that they are able to learn. Up to a point. We don’t want people to be students for their entire lives, they have to be cut off at some point.

Job applicants should be allowed, and encouraged, to use the scores on these federal tests as proof of their value to prospective employers, and employers may require test scores to be submitted. Legal safe harbors should be created so that employers can make employment decisions based on these test scores without fear of legal liability. And it should be illegal to favor an job applicant because of the where they took classes (which favors the rich and connected), the only thing that should matter is actual demonstrations of learning such as the score on the national test.

4. Eliminate degree requirements for fields like law and engineering and public accounting. For critical occupations like medicine, where doctors need hands-on training, we need to make some allowances. But doctors should go straight into medicine and not spend four years studying something else before they are allowed to start learning how to be doctors.

Written by Lion of the Blogosphere

March 28, 2019 at EDT pm

Posted in Education

Are people are getting fatter because they have fewer siblings?

Studies in THREE different countries, Brazil, Japan and the United States all show that same thing, that people with more siblings have lower BMI and lower chance of being overweight.

I expected that the opposite would be found. I assumed that fat people are breeding more, so fat people would, on average, have more siblings than thin people.

If there is some mysterious environmental reason we don’t know about that causes people with siblings to be thinner, then this explains the observation that people are getting heavier. It can simply be attributed to declining birth rates.

* * *

Studies have shown the same for IQ. Fewer siblings means higher IQ. Many have assumed this is evidence of dysgenic breeding, and dysgenic breeding is surely happening, but possibly the so-called Flynn Effect is caused by the same thing as increasing obesity: fewer children being born.

* * *

This study shows that people are fatter today than in the past, even when matched up for caloric intake and physical activity. Proving wrong the common assumption that people are fatter today because they are lazy, eating too much and not doing any exercise.

I say that the real reason has to do with dysgenic fertility plus lower birth rates.

* * *

Also, a study in Sweden showed that first-borns are taller than later-born siblings: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23347499

And this in the UK:

David Lawson, an anthropologist at University College London, found that when other socioeconomic factors were taken into account, children’s height was strongly dependent on the number of older siblings they had.

In a family of four children, the siblings were 2.5cm shorter than average, according to the study. Further analysis revealed that the youngest was most affected.

The conclusion is clear that the secular trends of increasing height, IQ and BMI are all have the same correlation with birth order and number of siblings. Therefore, declining fertility could be contributing to all of these trends.

Written by Lion of the Blogosphere

March 28, 2019 at EDT am

Posted in Biology

Facebook amps up censorship

Standing Against Hate

“White nationalism” is now banned from Facebook. With no definition of what that means. But Facebook proudly announces that their AI will get better at automatically censoring “white nationalist” posts.

Is being against immigration “white nationalist?” Is human biodiversity “white nationalist?”

Written by Lion of the Blogosphere

March 27, 2019 at EDT pm

Posted in Technology

I support lottery-based admissions

A liberal group called New America made this recommendation and it has been picked up by NPR.

I say, let’s go for it. This would turn Harvard into a community college (unless Harvard decides to turn down all federal money in order to keep its evil elitist policies), but that’s a good thing because the elite universities have become enemies of the people with their support for radical SJWism. Let them be destroyed by the very left-wing policies they’ve pushed on the rest of the nation. I think that it’s totally politically feasible that Democrats in Congress would go for this, because they believe in the magic-bricks-and-mortar theory of education.

Written by Lion of the Blogosphere

March 27, 2019 at EDT pm

Posted in Education

A videogame-based IQ test?

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/features/2019-03-19/a-harvard-dropout-s-plan-to-fix-college-admissions-with-video-games

That’s basically what this article is talking about. But “IQ” is not mentioned once in the article. So I am rather stumped. Doesn’t everyone know how much the liberal elite (which controls everything these days) hates the idea of IQ tests? If there’s an IQ test, it means that blacks will perform much worse on it than whites, and they will say it is racially biased. Or will a computer-based IQ test finally prove to everyone that lower black IQ is not caused by lack of education, because we all know that blacks actually play a lot more videogames than upper-middle-class white kids whose parents strictly limit their “screen” time.

Raymond B. Cattell came up with the concept of “crystallized g” and “fluid g.” A test of crystallized g would be like the verbal portion of the SAT because it’s heavily influenced by knowing a lot of vocabulary words and having experience doing lots of reading. In English. A lot of people think it would be great if there was a way to test intelligence totally independent of schooling or environment. My opinion has been that it’s a fool’s errand, and that we should embrace tests of crystallized g as the best way to test intelligence. The so-called “Flynn effect,” to my understanding, has been based on tests of fluid g. While IQ according to Flynn was increasing, verbal SAT scores were decreasing. Decreasing intelligence would be predicted by society’s dysgenic fertility. (I believe that the decline in math SAT scores has been temporarily halted by the massive increase in teaching to the test that began in the 2000s, because the math SAT is more susceptible to improvement through intense coaching.)

But there’s none of that in the article, just “golly-gee-whiz, this is better than the SAT, and a lot of people have invested in it.” But I predict that if any sort of test becomes as “high stakes” as the SAT, then an industry will arise around prepping people for it, and it will be discovered that the video-game-based test is even more influenced by coaching and prepping than the traditional SAT. And I also predict that SJWs will shut it down because they will say that the test discriminates against blacks.

Written by Lion of the Blogosphere

March 27, 2019 at EDT am

Posted in Biology

Smollett in the MSM

NBC News:

“The FOP is outraged by the decision to drop charges against Smollett, but not surprised,” the union said in an emailed statement to NBC News. “Since Kimberly Foxx has taken office, she has transformed the prosecutor’s office to a political arm of the anti-police movement. We renew our call for a federal investigation of her role in this case and expect the media to conduct a thorough investigation.”

The mysterious involvement of Kim Foxx and the Obamas was only a local Chicago story and on right-wing websites until now.

Or maybe not. I don’t see this in any other non-Chicago MSM.

An column in the Chicago Tribune:

“Foxx expunged it all,” said a top Chicago police official. “The media’s really not focusing on that. What does it mean? It means you’ll never see the (police) interviews or read the notes.

“The case has been expunged. I can’t even tell you if Jussie Smollett was ever arrested or charged,” the official said. “Charged with what? Faking hate crimes? Indictments, what indictments? She wiped him clean.”

Written by Lion of the Blogosphere

March 27, 2019 at EDT am

Posted in Crime

%d bloggers like this: