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MAOA, Race, and Crime

One gene which plays a role in Black’s high crime rate is the monoamine oxidase -a gene (MAO-A). This gene produces an enzyme by the same name. The enzyme MAO-A breaks down a class of neurotransmitter called mono-amines in the brain. These neurotransmitters include ones which are well known to effect behavior such as dopamine and serotonin. Some versions of the MAO-A gene lead to lower levels of MAO-A the enzyme and, therefore, more mono-amine activity in the brain.

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IQs of East Asians

One of the major arguments against heredetarianism is the claim that East Asians’ higher IQs than Europeans is merely a result of effort, and are in fact an example of effort raising the IQ of an entire group by about 4 points relative to 100, which is presumably what they would score if they were as “lazy” as Europeans.

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Does Natural Law Exist?

What, ultimately, is the basis for morality? Many people argue that some things are self-evidently wrong, like torture and murder. No need to invoke the Ten Commandments or any religious tradition. Some things are just wrong. Period. This is a respectable idea with a long lineage. It’s the argument of Natural Law. All people are born with a natural sense of right and wrong, and it is only later, through vice or degeneration, that some can no longer correctly tell the two apart.

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Women’s Brains

Here is a very interesting paper on sex differences in brain size and intelligence, notable for linking people’s brain scans with their detailed intelligence test results. It has been accepted for publication in Intelligence.

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First Worldism: The European Revolution

There is something I want to share with “fellow Europeans”, and it is something hard to describe. It is to, in a moment, “feel” the past. How can I convey this? How can I show this? Around 7700 BC, white skin had “reached fixation”, or the highest prevalence in the genome until today or some later decline, in modern-day Sweden. Some time around 3500 BC, white skin reached fixation in the rest of Europe. I don’t say this because white skin is super-important (though melanin is a hormone and it’s absence will have causal effects on behavior), but just to …

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South African Apartheid: a case study on the effects of European colonialism in Africa

The impact of European colonialism on the world is often described as being profoundly negative. The popular view is that Europeans came, stole resources, destroyed cultures, and committed mass murder all over the earth. By contrast, the prevailing view 100 years ago was that Europe was supplying the world with advanced institutions which they would not develop on their own and, in so doing, was civilizing the world.

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What Race Were the Greeks and Romans?

  Recent films about ancient Greece such as Troy, Helen of Troy, and 300, have used actors who are of Anglo-Saxon or Celtic ancestry (e.g. Brad Pitt, Gerard Butler). Recent films about ancient Rome, such as Gladiator and HBO’s series Rome, have done the same (e.g. Russell Crowe). Were the directors right, from an historical point of view? Were the ancient Greeks and Romans of North European stock?

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Proportionality: The Fairness of Inequality

There was a time when boys played games of marbles following strict playground rules: contestants had to stand a prescribed distance away from the little pyramid of marbles, and chuck only marbles of the prescribed size. Rules ruled. Piaget was intrigued by the explanations children gave for moral judgements, and the playground is the arena in which the concept of fairness is honed.

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Welfare: Who’s on It, Who’s Not?

The Center for Immigration Studies (CIS) has published a report called “Welfare Use by Immigrant and Native Households.” The report’s principle finding is that fully 51 percent of immigrant households receive some form of welfare, compared to an already worrisomely high 30 percent of American native households. The study is based on the most accurate data available, the Census Bureau’s Survey of Income and Program Participation (SIPP). It also reports stark racial differences in the use of welfare programs.

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First Worldism: A Holisis

My views on race differences did not come from some heavy-handed indoctrination from anyone. It came from looking at atlases and tables. I love tables and lists, when I’m bored I’ll make lists out of things just for fun. Murray Rothbard, when reading about regulatory policies of the US Federal Government, said that he didn’t set out to find some conspiracy – but that the conspiracies just popped right out at him. Seeing these conspiracies between industry and government was not a product of some analysis on Rothbard’s part at first. It was a holisis, or an immediate piecing together …

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How Banging Your Cousins Led to the Islamic State

Apologies for the tabloidy title. This is an otherwise serious post. It is well known that higher rates of cousin marriages – especially the father’s brother’s daughter (FBD) type that is common in the Arab Muslim world – tends to increase clannishness and depress IQs. It is often discussed in HBD circles. The main focus of the most prominent current discussions led by Steve Sailer are the ways in which cousin marriage relates to the European immigration crisis. His argument basically goes that Europe is about to get tons of mentally stunted inbreds who will use proceed to use cousin …

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Survival of the Nicest-smelling?

It has long been known that we vary not only in our sensitivity to different smells but also in our preferences for them—the degree to which they seem pleasant or unpleasant. This variability often contains a large genetic component (Gross-Isseroff et al., 1992; Karstensen and Tommerup, 2012; Keller et al., 2007; Keller et al., 2012; Weiss et al., 2011). In the case of one odor, a single gene explains over 96% of the variability in smell sensitivity (Jaegar et al., 2013). A twin study has similarly found two odorants to be 78% and 73% heritable (Gross-Isseroff, 1992).

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Slavery in the United States

This is a jarring statement at first glance, but I think the evidence is pretty simple and clear. Perhaps to reduce emotionality, replace “slave” with “serf” or “peasant,” which is appropriate since in practice they were the same thing—one system had a Master who owned a slave, the other had a Lord who owned land that a serf was bound to work on.

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The Heritability of Political Views

The Iron Law of Heritability From Thomas Bouchard 2004: “As Rutter (2002) noted, ‘Any dispassionate reading of the evidence leads to the inescapable conclusion that genetic factors play a substantial role in the origins of individual differences with respect to all psychological traits, both normal and abnormal’ (p. 2). Put concisely, all psychological traits are heritable.”

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Changes in the American Black-White IQ Gap: 1916-2016

In this article, I am going to examine how the Black/White IQ gap has changed over time in the United States. After documenting basic trends, I’ll look at what caused the B/W IQ gap to shrink in the late 20th century. As will be seen, simplistic explanations based on changes in wealth and education are inadequate. We don’t know for sure why this convergence of test scores occurred, but desegregation is the most plausible hypothesis I have been able to come up with. We’ll also see that this narrowing of the IQ gap may have reflected a narrowing in test-taking ability rather …

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Not Everyone Does It

All humans love to kiss, so kissing must go back to early hominids and even chimps and bonobos. This is how ethologists and evolutionary psychologists think when they write about the subject. Just one thing. Even in historic times not all humans loved to kiss. Far from arising millions of years in the past, kissing seems to have arisen no earlier than 40,000 years ago, when modern humans began to enter northern Eurasia.

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Making Europeans Kinder, Gentler

Hanged, drawn, and quartered. Although the Middle Ages were, in the imagination of our contemporaries, “the time of the gallows,” the reality was appreciably different (Carbasse, 2011, pp. 38-39) Like many well-meaning people, I once considered the death penalty a relic of a more barbaric age. Outside the old jailhouse, here in Quebec City, I can see the open space where people used to be hanged … in public. In some cases, the authorities would go one better. The body would be placed in a cage and suspended near a thoroughfare for all to see … while it decomposed. This …

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How Universal Is Empathy?

Bronislaw Malinowski with natives on the Trobriand Islands (1918 – source). Pro-social behavior seems to be a human universal, but is the same true for full empathy? What is empathy? It has at least three components: – pro-social behavior, i.e., actions of compassion to help others – cognitive empathy, i.e., capacity to understand another person’s mental state – affective or emotional empathy, i.e., capacity to respond with the appropriate emotion to another person’s mental state (Chakrabarti and Baron-Cohen, 2013)

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