Did you manage to find any stats on the averages for time spent with professional tutors, SAT prep help from parents or older students, number of re-takes, availability of practice and prep materials/books.... etc... for black vs. white students?

That information would lend the 300 pt difference some relevance.

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How do you figure that? Because racism is sooooo 1950s?

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Your inability to consider the factors might cause that make this argument completely moot. Unless you are genuinely arguing that black people are, as a group, less intelligent than white people. In which case, sally forth, my racist chum and enjoy your life.

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Robin, an awful lot of your material seems to follow this pattern:

- Take phenomena that are fundamentally different in ways that people find hard to verbalize.

- Since people can't verbalize important differences, conclude that there aren't any.

- Expose the hypocrisy while self-congratulating on insightfulness.

People don't want folks to suffer physical hardship for their low status. Nowadays, that is considered cruel.

However, that doesn't mean people don't want any variety in status. People want there to be lots of different ways to have status, whether it's through GPA scores or through sports. People want higher status to be achieved through effort and not redistributed.

It's just that people prefer low-status individuals to be humiliated without making them suffer physically. It seems more... dignified.

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What's the difference between buy-outs and redistribution?

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I couldn't find the reference to politicians playing the race card in the paper. Since the military is a highly atypical institution, I don't think it is a good idea to generalize from its example. Unless the entire nation gets conscripted to fight against external enemies, although that would likely be problematic for immigrants from enemy countries.

Your theory sounds somewhat like the "contact theory" that is pretty resoundingly rejected in the paper. He thought the effect might be different for different age cohorts, but it wasn't. In a footnote he compares "old" to "new" diversity and says "we have so far discovered no evidence that over a span of these two decades ‘older’ diversity has become any less likely to trigger the ‘hunkering’ reaction than more recent diversity". Old diversity does not consist just of blacks (who have been in America for centuries), but also of Mexicans who have been in the southwest since before it was part of America. Sailer once compared Mexican & Jewish immigrants who came to the same cities at the same times, and of course have very different outcomes to this day. So I think his reliance on the example of previous immigration is shaky. A book on this is "Generations of Exclusion", comparing up to four generations of Chicanos over time. Like Putnam, the researchers there were surprised and disappointed by the results, but to their credit published them anyways.

I actually have an old post at my blog playing devil's advocate for diversity. It's defended precisely BECAUSE it lowers trust/social capital. But people sometimes tire of my repeated linking to my blog, so I'll let you search for it.

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TGGP, that is interesting. However, he is taking a snapshot of attitudes and diversity at a moment, not looking at changes over time, or what caused those changes. In his E Pluribus Unum paper, he does mention that people who experienced working with different ethnicities in the military have greater acceptance of diversity.

“First, the United States Army today has become a relatively colour-blind institution. Systematic surveys have shown that the average American soldier has many closer inter-racial friendships than the average American civilian of the same age and social class (United States Department of Defense 1997; Moskos & Butler 1996).”

It is my understanding that the US military is more diverse than the US national average and yet shows reduced intolerance. I think that is due to military leaders not tolerating ethnic intolerance. I think the problem in the US is due to politicians (and others) playing the race card and trying to foment racial animosity to further their agendas.

I think the social capital that is needed to reduce intolerance is being liquidated to further the careers of politicians.

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Diversity helps everybody? Robert Putnam found that diversity makes people more distrustful of others and withdraw into their shells. He witheld from publishing his work for years, but had enough integrity as a social scientist to eventually reveal his results.

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So status is still zero sum in groups X and Y and Z. But turning X into Y+Z seems to lead to an increase of overall status available to the individuals who used comprise X but now comprise Y and Z.

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"because “othering” is fundamentally about damaging the reproductive success of the “other”."

This is a very succinct and I think accurate way of putting it. But we are adaptation executers not fitness maximisers, upper class status games are mostly sterile exercise. How utterly misfiring intuitions about his are can easily be demonstrated by the fact that by not caring about about the availability of reliable birth control to women in say rural India you are enhancing their reproductive success.

But I'm not sure if I was successful in getting my point across, status is subjective, and different groups use different ways to gauge and determine it.

With a diversity of subcultures and cultures, you simply must have a disconnect with perceptions of social status between different groups and societies. Diversity of values is impossible without at least some othering of human beings as long as these values have anything at all to do with said human beings.

A human mind can only comprehend so much status, our brains aren't wired for modern mass society. Status seems zero sum. But it isn't.

A reasonably populous group X is homogeneous rigid hierarchical society. It has a top dog X1. He feels pretty swell.

What happens if you split up group X into groups Y and Z who don't care about each other. Now Y1 and Z1 feel as swell as X1 did before.

This of course has material consequences because of economies of scale, but if X isn't Malthusian (as ours temporarily isn't) and the "conflict" between the two groups remains low intensity it dosen't seem a clear cut that keeping them identifying as X is good at all if you care about overall welfare. If you completely isolate them from each other or make it systematically impossible for them to harm each other in meaningful ways I would venture to say the psychologically benefit of "more" status for the remaining individuals of each group clearly outweighs the material loss, especially since humans are social creatures.

BTW The same analysis holds if X, Y and Z where unrealistically egalitarian with each member having exactly as much status as everyone else.

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So, it seems like affirmative action is primarily about trying to rectify opportunity differences that result from wealth differences, and race is used because racial differences maps well to wealth disparity, right? That seems to be what Kevin is implying, which I agree with. But because race isn't a perfect proxy for wealth, poor white people don't get any help and rich minorities receive help they don't need. To justify the continued use of such an imperfect system, I think some benchmark of its success in terms of lessening the cycle of poverty/missed opportunities for its recipients would have to be met. Has any research been done on this? Tracking income, success of children (grades, SAT scores, college acceptance, whatever), etc, of affirmative action recipients to see if there's a marked improvement?

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Status is a ranking in a social hierarchy. All rankings are zero sum. Raising one ranking necessarily lowers other rankings or the first ranking could not change. “Othering” people is to impute them with low status, and in the limit non-human status. That is the entire reason for “othering” people, to lower their status and in the limit to make it so low that they can be cheated, lied to, abused and killed.

Differential status is about differential rights. The “other” doesn't have the right to be treated as a human being. The compulsion to impute differential social status to genetics is because “othering” is fundamentally about damaging the reproductive success of the “other”.

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"Because, in those target situations though the victims had all the knowledge and skills they were rejected. Therefore, the affirmative action helped to ensure that people were good in what they did would get a job."

Citation needed. I'm not disputing This was the intention.

However since all stereotypes are true, unmerited over promotion has probably taken place because of it. Some estimates of the economic cost of such policies are pretty high, but they are best taken with a grain of salt (as all estimates of policies are).

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Naturally. The class aspect is very relevant I think.

Having politically correct beliefs usually signals you can afford to block out unpleasant side effects diversity and don't need strict rules and limitations to make "good" choices (which you naturally don't directly call them good, but still use to contrast to the behaviour of say lower class Whites, who call them good but don't live up to them as well as you do).

Politically incorrect beliefs also generally signals that you need additional memetic scaffolding to prevent downward social mobility of yourself or your children as well or that you are tone deaf to social signalling.

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"Because status is zero-sum,"

Not exactly, at least not always.

Different cultures and subcultures gauge status in different ways. One can get many of the same psychological benefits of having high status, while not necessaries the benefit in a society. Much of our cultural activity is based on creating alternative ladders of status climbing in limited circles.

Due to mind projection, a diversity of values probably creates more people who see themselves as higher status than they would otherwise. Also if differences are too apparent differing groups simply "other" each other. I don't care what those Pastafarians say about my practice of sprinkling my Sundays with goat blood, our glorious lord Azathoth commands it!

A simple way to redistribute status is thus simply to change what is valued. I think the shift from farmer to forager values has raised the status of most minorities (but probably slightly lowered the status of say Indian immigrants in the US or Asian Americans) and that was the reason policies of equalizing outcome or opportunity could be implemented, not the other way around.

Also different people differ on how they respond to different levels of status. It is unreasonable to a priori assume that all of the measured intergroup differences in such attitude are strictly due to culture and not say genetics.

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Maybe so, but many algorithms people use which are "kosher" from a rationalist point of view do not have a good explicit description (scientific/mathematical intuition, for example).

The requirement to articulate precisely is too strong.

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