Randoms

- Joseph Sobran:

I believe I’d actually make a rather good king. After all, the best kings were a lot like me. They knew they hadn’t done anything to deserve their power, so they used it sparingly. They didn’t have big dreams, didn’t try to remake their societies from top to bottom, didn’t promise their subjects the moon. Even their wars were mostly skirmishes, by modern standards.

Unlike Woodrow Wilson, Franklin Roosevelt, and others I could name, kings didn’t talk a lot of utopian rot; in a democracy, you hear nothing else. And compared with modern governments, most kings kept taxes low. Americans paid far less under George III than under today’s government. Blasphemous as it may seem to say so, they were freer than we are. King George didn’t care a hoot whether you smoked or how much water your toilet tank held. That’s how I would try to be.

- Mangan on the downside of high IQ

- Yale wants the people of Singapore to be able to criticize their awesome government. Of course, that would allow people like the professors at Yale to stir up racial and religious violence in Singapore, but I’m sure they have nobler goals in mind.

- For every one time that a libertarian website cites evidence of police misconduct, HBD websites find 7 examples of BBB.

- The Peoples’ Daily is having an IPO. It’ll be funny if this happens just as the press in the US needs bailing out. Like the banks.

- Foreclosed homes in black neighborhoods aren’t as nice as ones in white neighborhoods. Consumerist blames banks. Yeah, I’m sure it’s the banks’ fault.

- Athol: "If you’re a guy, your default setting when it comes to getting married is… to not get married. Not to anyone. That’s the rule."

- Desacrilization

- Top cornerback prospect gets a 4 on the Wonderlic (I think this maps to an IQ of 68)

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32 Responses to Randoms

  1. Jehu says:

    Foseti,
    It’s likely that the cornerback isn’t quite that dumb. The wonderlic is a really fast test and if you’re totally naive to that kind of test (what is it, like 10 minutes), you can score considerably lower than it you aren’t—all you have to do is get stuck on a few questions. My guess is he’ll do a little better, maybe a 10 or 12, on a retest. BTW, thanks for the link

  2. Matt Strictland says:

    The government in Singapore should not be immune to criticism, It has the 3rd lowest birth rate on the planet despite state run dating services and seriously massive effort.

    Its a nation of mostly decent, hard working, smart people with no future.

    My guesstimate is that its a super diverse (40% non native) society using authoritarian methods to keep it in check. This works from a safety POV but it has the same net effect on humans as zoos do on animal reproduction. As human social and ecological needs are not met people have no reason to participate beyond their immediate self or to breed. people need identity and for whatever reason, Singaporean isn’t enough

    I do understand the attraction though , its a clean, orderly, and well off society with low welfare and only modest poverty . It just doesn’t fit human needs and thus cannot be a model.

    • spandrell says:

      Damn right. Its as feminist/banksta ruled as everywhere else. Democracy is not the only problem.

    • James James says:

      The problem is Singapore cannot expand. It needs to start setting up colonies, but it would need to start invading places to get the land, and would be quickly destroyed by the International Community.

      • spandrell says:

        In another time they could have been another Venice-style kickass commercial republic plundering her neighbours.
        Chinese were never the martial type though.

  3. Vladimir says:

    Re: the “desacralization” link, I just left a comment there, which I’m cross-posting here because I think it might be of interest:

    Jehu,

    You’re absolutely right when you say that for the Cathedral to be dislodged from power, it must first be desacralized. However, if you believe that you’re seeing any signs that such desacralization is actually taking place, or even that it looks like a plausible outcome of some current trend, this is sheer wishful thinking.

    Now, I definitely don’t want to be a preacher of despair and nihilism, but the first step towards any realistic hope is to recognize the reality of the present situation. And in reality, you could have found such supposed signs of “desacralization” of the progressivist narrative in the daily news at any point in post-WW2 history, along with conservatives and libertarians of the day naively cheering these supposed signs of the incoming demise of progressivism. Yet it never actually happens, and a simple look at the state of public opinion will show that the teachings of the Cathedral are believed and held sacred with greater fervor than ever, and with perfect uniformity outside of a tiny contrarian fringe. (And contrary to another pattern of wishful thinking common on this fringe, it has not been getting any larger or more influential with the mainstreaming of the internet; on the contrary, there are clear reasons why the internet may even affect it negatively on the net.)

    Again, rather than a call to despair, take this comment as a call to serious and positive thinking about what could be done to desacralize the Cathedral, rather than wasting time with self-deception about its demise supposedly being around the corner, when in reality it’s only proceeding forward with its long and steady triumphant march.

    • Phlebas says:

      And contrary to another pattern of wishful thinking common on this fringe, it has not been getting any larger or more influential with the mainstreaming of the internet; on the contrary, there are clear reasons why the internet may even affect it negatively on the net.

      Could you expand on these clear reasons? I don’t viscerally disagree, but I can’t imagine how this could be.

      Also, assuming that you are right, is size and influence of an incipient intellectual movement a reasonable criterion for gauging its prospects? Might it not nonetheless be the case that today’s partially internet-spawned contrarian fringe is of higher (potential) quality than its equivalent in past decades?

      • Anon^2 says:

        “Could you expand on these clear reasons?”

        My take:

        In the old days, kids writing papers would be exposed to history books and encyclopedias from different decades and perspectives. Now, they make their starting point Wikipedia, which is slavish to conventional wisdom on so many issues.

        Social media also allows for intense policing of social norms and for intense propagandizing of establishment views. If the fringe is strengthening, why is almost everyone still anonymous?

      • Vladimir says:

        It’s simple: the internet enormously amplifies reputational damage of any sort. In the old days, a faux pas would eventually be forgotten, or you could at least escape your bad reputation by moving somewhere else. Nowadays, however, google provides an indelible, inescapable, instantly accessible, and eternal trail of anything you’ve ever written online under your real name, or that someone else has found remarkable enough to write about you online. So once there’s an online record that associates you with any sort of seriously un-PC views, you’re irreversibly screwed for the rest of your life. It seems to me that the net effect can’t be anything but increased conformity.

        Of course, you can always write anonymously, but the catch is that once you become popular enough to matter, anonymity is very hard to maintain.

        Re: the reactionary blogosphere, I do think that the internet has led to some extremely interesting and high-quality material, which is certainly much better than what would exist otherwise. I just don’t think that, given the present state of affairs, it has any realistic prospects of making a dent in the Universalist dominance over the entire mainstream society. Something more will be needed.

      • Foseti says:

        See e.g. Derbyshire. His treatment for thoughtcrime is pretty disheartening.

      • Phlebas says:

        Vladimir, that is a very good reason that I had not considered.

    • Foseti says:

      Vladimir, I agree. I’m much less optimistic than Jehu.

    • Jehu says:

      Vlad,
      Debt is the biggest reason I’m optimistic. We’re well above 1x GDP in debt now and history has shown that the federal government can’t manage to get more than about 19% of GDP in what it calls ‘revenues’, regardless of the tax rate or policy pursued. Economic collapse pretty reliably totally discredits a power structure.

      • Vladimir says:

        Jehu,

        I think you’re falling straight into a leftist-democratic fallacy, believing that popular discontent — over economic failure or anything else — could somehow threaten the elites. That simply never happens with any elite that has even the slightest shred of competence and belief in its legitimacy. Look at North Korea — its population in the 1990s was literally starving to death, and it hasn’t been much better since then. Yet its elites have easily stayed in charge.

        What matters are the mechanisms by which the elite opinion is formed and maintained (and which then trickles down through media, education, bureaucratic patronage, status-signaling by elite imitation, etc.). Any potential demise of the present elites can happen only if they lose control over this process. However, as long as they have control over it, the common folk can be freezing and gnawing on bones and yet they won’t raise any significant fuss.

  4. ThomasT says:

    Sorry Foseti, I despise democracy as much as the next guy, but that laissez-faire kingship stuff is nothing but a fantasy borne out of technological limitations in the good old days. The reason kings never were as totalitarian as democracies certainly wasn’t for lack of trying. Imagine a Louis XIV at the helm of a modern bureaucracy and you won’t have a problem seeing him care about your toilet tank.
    Humans generally excert as much power as they can get away with. No more, no less. Technology is far more important to this than the name you give your form of government

    • Phlebas says:

      What would be particularly useful, is if people with the time and inclination would investigate and describe the extant governments that we would consider to be most responsible or desirable.

      How feasible would it be – once teh Cathedral is desacralized – to install one of these governments? More plausible at least than “neo-Cameralism”, which is encumbered with burdensome details and makes a questionable assumption about the benevolence of profit-optimisers – although certainly, that idea also deserves to be analysed in great detail.

      • ThomasT says:

        I know it’s not really palatable to the modern taste, but I’m with Gómez Dávila on this one: “True problems do not have a solution but a history.”

      • This may interest you. I caution you that my original draft of that proposal is 40+ pages, so I trimmed it extensively to make that post.

        It wasn’t terribly well-received, but I enjoyed the discussions that followed as they seemed like the closest thing to a test that proposal will ever receive.

      • Phlebas says:

        Olave, that was indeed an interesting discussion.

    • Foseti says:

      This is the great question. I doubt Louis would give a damn what I take a shit in, but maybe I’m wrong. Technology is the great difference. It covers lots of progressivism’s sins, but maybe lack of it covers up some of the sins of older governments as well.

      • Jehu says:

        Louis didn’t require his legitimation to be because he was a holy priest of a sacred ideology like progressivism. He got his legitimacy because he was a King, by Divine Right by God. Accordingly he didn’t have much of an incentive to care about your toilets. CS Lewis wrote on this, talking about how he’d rather be governed by robber barons than by omnipotent moral busybodies.

      • spandrell says:

        Technology cuts both ways, facebook make surveillance easy, but rebellion too. If Louis didn’t want to lose his throne to some liberal agitators he would NEED to control the media and every aspect of your lives he could manage.

        Singapore bans chewing gum.

  5. Nyk says:

    Any comments on the recent rebuttals to race differences in intelligence from the OccidentalAscent blog?

    I’m not quite convinced myself, but it would be nice if the HBD community took a closer look at his points.

    • Phlebas says:

      Here is a response: replace statistics with common sense. IQ is by far the weakest piece of evidence in favour of ethnic differences in intelligence. The real evidence is in the fact that Jews are overrepresented 100 times amongst Nobel Prize winners, whereas negroes have invented, erm, peanut butter. Or that negroes sink to the bottom of the population wherever they are found. Or that negro populations struggle profoundly to sustain even moderate levels of civilization. Or just the intuitive ability that your brain possesses in gauging intelligence, should you have encountered a reasonable variety of individuals from various ethnic groups.

      Oh, it’s because of oppression, is it? Well gee, the Jews haven’t exactly had a smooth ride either. Nor are blacks actually being oppressed in the modern West, and no rational person believes in voodoo time-travelling oppression. And isn’t it funny how, despite oppression (not to mention “stereotype threat”) negroes have always managed to excel at things they are actually good at, i.e. athletic pursuits and music.

      Anyhow, comments on the most recent article at Occidental Ascent:

      Generally, seven points are noticeable concerning the Black-White gap: (1) Longitudinal studies show a small to nonexistent IQ gap between ages 3 and 11 (e.g., a Black-White gap ranging from 0-0.5 SD).

      Negroes mature faster than Europeans, and this may have implications for intelligence differences in very young humans. More importantly, does one really expect small children (three-year olds??) to try hard and produce meaningful results in an IQ test? How can a test conducted upon someone who can’t even read be treated in the same way as an IQ test taken by a motivated, mentally competent adult?

      (2) The Black-White Longitudinal IQ gap does not systematically increase with age (between 3 and 11) as it does in the US, but it either stays the same, decreases, or bounces around.

      Sounds like a good reason not to take these tests and the statistics they produce too seriously.

      (3) Longitudinal studies show a small to nonexistent achievement gap between ages 11 and 16 (e.g., A Black-White achievement test scores/GCSE point gap ranging from 0 to 0.35 SD).

      GCSEs aren’t a particularly good measure of intelligence. They are an absurdly dumbed-down testing regime taken by disinterested kids who’ve suffered through years of appalling state schooling. Anyone with half a brain, or who tries hard enough, can get an A or A* in all his GCSEs, and it’s especially easy to get a pass grade in tests like “leisure and tourism” or whatever. Here is a comment on another article at that site which expresses very well the problems of using the modern GCSE as a proxy IQ test.

      (5) Cross sectional data shows a moderate sized IQ gap by age 11 (e.g., a Black-White IQ gap of around 0.5 SD). (6) Some cross sectional shows a large adult gap, but there is little consistency across data — with points ranging from 0.3 SD to 1.7 SD — calling this data into question.

      “Calling this data into question” – note that (as we shall see below) the author does not apply this wise policy of skepticism when the data is similarly inconsistent but happens to support to his position.

      Also, note that smack in the middle of 0.3SD to 1.7SD is the traditional 1SD negro-European IQ gap.

      My interpretation is: […] (2) There are, at most, small genetic differences, with respect to intelligence, between Black and White adolescents and young adults born in the UK. I base this on the following: (c) The data from the mentioned longitudinal studies does not agree with the conjecture that the gaps increase with age.

      This being the data that in different studies variously shows the average IQ gap in negro and European youngsters between the ages of 3-11 either staying the same, decreasing, or bouncing around. Not exactly rock-solid science, is it, so why not call these results into question too?

      (3) There are, at most, small genetic differences, with respect to intelligence, between Black and White adults born, respectively, in Africa and in Europe. I base this on the following: (e) There are modest to large adult IQ gaps in the UK.

      Speaks for itself…as usual, the denialist side in the ethnicity-intelligence question has thrown Occam’s razor out of the window.

      (f) As further evidence against super-duper selection theory, I present the result of Somalian refugees, who presumably were not very selected and who perform only 0.5 SD below Whites in measures of scholastic achievement.

      Somalis generally have very dark skin, but ethnically speaking are intermediate to regular negro “black people” and Arabs. An IQ difference of 0.5SD is unremarkable in this light.

  6. The fourth doorman of the apocalypse says:


    – Top cornerback prospect gets a 4 on the Wonderlic (I think this maps to an IQ of 68)

    Why, that must make him Presidential Timber!

  7. PA says:

    There’s no need to dislodge the Cathedral from power. It would be sufficient if the Cathedral, through generational successions, simply reoriented itself away from dysgenics.

    • Konkvistador says:

      The thing is that craziness is built into the Cathedral. If the Cathedral regains sanity on eugenics, that dosen’t mean it won’t go insane elsewhere. One of the key points Moldbug makes is that the Cathedral’s map has no consistent relation to reality.

      If technological progress continues, we are witnessing more and more power given to a delusional monstrosity. Dysgenics is something that needs decades or even a century or two to make a noticeable impact. It is as far as possible delusions go a pretty safe, if eventually fatal, one.

      Imagine what the Cathedral would do when trying to decide on say grainting “human rights” to AIs or deploy nanotechnology. The Cathedral with nuclear weapons was scary enough!

  8. Jehu says:

    Vlad,
    I don’t think our elite is as competent in maintaining authority as the NK elite, or the old Soviet elite for that matter, who lacked the will to retain power.
    Also I think the US is incredibly brittle, far moreso than the USSR was, in terms of the vulnerability of its infrastructure and its lack of any real cultural cohesion. Any sort of economic collapse here will make Weimar hyperinflation look tame.

  9. Dario says:

    Sobran and anyone else celebrating the wonderful freedom of French ancien regime have no idea what are they talking about.

    Just one example

    http://mises.org/daily/4315

    The new cloth, printed calicoes, began to be imported from India in the 1660s, and became highly popular, useful for an inexpensive mass market, as well as for high fashion. As a result, calico printing was launched in France. By the 1680s, the indignant woolen, cloth, silk, and linen industries all complained to the state of “unfair competition” by the highly popular upstart. The printed colors were readily outcompeting the older cloths. And so the French state responded in 1686 by total prohibition of printed calicoes: their import or their domestic production.

    In 1700, the French government went all the way: an absolute ban on every aspect of calicoes including their use in consumption. Government spies had a hysterical field day: “peering into coaches and private houses and reporting that the governess of the Marquis de Cormoy had been seen at her window clothed in calico of a white background with big red flowers, almost new, or that the wife of a lemonade-seller had been seen in her shop in a casquin of calico.”[3] Literally thousands of Frenchmen died in the calico struggles, either being executed for wearing calicoes or in armed raids against calico users.

    for more, search for “gabelle”

    • spandrell says:

      Exactly. I have no idea where the myth of medieval freedom came from. Premodern countries, in Europe and elsewhere were as moralizing and meddling as any. Governments always control as much as they can manage.

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