Monday, October 22, 2007

Who's the Idiot?

Back to My Little Pony, the racial achievement gap:

It appears to be that time once more for the race and IQ debate to rear its foolish head by dint of something said or published by a person of purportedly high intelligence.

We were last here in 1994, with the release of "The Bell Curve," in which Charles Murray, a historian, and Richard Hernstein, a behavioral psychologist, argued that black people, on the whole, are of lower intelligence than whites as a whole.

A firestorm erupted, with loads of dissenters and critics on one side and loads of defenders and believers on the other. Murray swam through the turbulence, laughing all the way to the bank as the book climbed the bestseller lists. . . .

Now comes the chancellor of the Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory, a scientific research facility in New York, telling a British audience that he sees a dire future for Africans because “all our social policies are based on the fact that their intelligence is the same as ours -- whereas all the testing says not really.”

If you are using a measurement tool, and the results look screwy time and time again, might one not question the accuracy of the measurement tool and therefore investigate the process whereby it is created and the methodology used in the measuring and a whole host of other related factors?

Let's not linger, though, there is more to see. Sex, baby! Yeah! Because the good Dr. Watson (most famous perhaps for being one of those who discovered the DNA molecule) also fantasizes that the Black people be getting they groove on:

Hunt-Grubbe also reports that Watson has suggested a link between skin colour and sex drive, hypothesizing that dark-skinned people have stronger libidos. In 2000 Watson shocked an audience at the University of California, Berkeley, when he advanced his theory about a link between skin color and sex drive. His lecture, complete with slides of bikini-clad women, argued that extracts of melanin — which give skin its color — had been found to boost subjects' sex drive.

Don't take it personally; although Watson may seem racist at first glance, a more thorough examination reveals he is batshit crazy.

Among the screws that are not only loose, but rolling around freely looking for a brain to which to attach in the echoing dark cavern of his haid are his fantasies of creating a Watson World in which all the ladies please his palate:

He has also suggested that beauty could be genetically engineered, saying "People say it would be terrible if we made all girls pretty. I think it would be great."

In this best of all possible worlds (in the immortal words of Leibniz and then Voltaire), there are no--gasp!--gays:

He has been quoted in The Sunday Telegraph as stating: "If you could find the gene which determines sexuality and a woman decides she doesn't want a homosexual child, well, let her."

And by the way? Fuck the fat people, too:

On the issue of obesity, Watson has also been quoted as saying: "Whenever you interview fat people, you feel bad, because you know you're not going to hire them."

UPDATE: From the 10/26/07 NYT:

James D. Watson, the eminent biologist who ignited an uproar last week with remarks about the intelligence of people of African descent, retired yesterday as chancellor of the Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory on Long Island, and from its board.

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