By JR on Thursday, February 27, 2014
Daniel Hannan has a number of interesting posters with his article on Nazism but not all are translated or translated well. I therefore reproduce them with translations:
Workers of the mind and the fist choose the frontline soldier, Hitler. Against hunger and desperation, choose Hitler
This poster is a bit hard to read but its text is all rendered clearly here. The body of the poster reads: "Wir Arbeiter sind erwacht – wir wählen Liste 2 Nationalsozialisten" -- which translates as: "We workers are awoken. We choose List 2, National Socialists"
By JR on Sunday, February 23, 2014
Does dislike of homosexuality give you heart attacks?
An academic study has just emerged which says that it does. "Homophobia is bad for your health" is the intended message. And the study itself is a refreshing piece of work that uses representative data, extensive controls, careful analysis and cautious wording. It is far better than most academic journal articles I read. So its conclusions should settle the matter?
Sadly, No. The study is a correlational one so warrants no conclusions about cause. Whether attitudes to homosexuals CAUSED the heart attacks or whether something associated with such attitudes caused the attacks is not known. And the authors acknowledged that. They suggest that certain health variables could be the "guilty" third factor.
And the elephant in the room there (I seem to be a master elephant detector) is of course IQ. Unless they are motivated by fundamentalist religious convictions, anybody who admits to anti-homosexual attitudes these days has to be either dumb or very brave. And bravery in the matter seems very rare. Homosexuals are sacred these days. And low IQ people do have worse health.
And the correlation between health and attitudes is weak anyway so other factors could very well be involved.
And there are some signs that all is not well with the results anyway. Both religiosity and conservatism showed negligible correlations with "antigay" attitudes -- where we would expect both of those to be strong predictors. So the conclusions of the study are very dubious indeed. I suspect that the underlying data was not robust enough to support the weight that the authors put on it.
The study is: Mark L. Hatzenbuehler, Anna Bellatorre, and Peter Muennig. "Anti-Gay Prejudice and All-Cause Mortality Among Heterosexuals in the United States". American Journal of Public Health: February 2014, Vol. 104, No. 2, pp. 332-337.
Despite its inconclusiveness, it will no doubt be quoted joyously and uncritically for many years to come. People who can believe that women and men are really the same will believe anything.
By JR on Saturday, February 22, 2014
As the great steamroller of secularism rumbles towards them, Christians generally have become much less mindful of denominational differences between them. Unbelief and Leftist oppression have become the current enemies for all Christians. So true Protestants (NOT including Anglicans and other "social" churches, who are generally too "modern" to believe in anything much) appreciate the solid opposition to abortion and homosexuality from Catholics, for instance. And Christians do need to band together. The secular steamroller has largely crushed belief and church loyalty in Britain, Western Europe and Australia. Only in the USA, Russia, Poland and Latin America is belief in the risen Lord still strong.
Young people therefore may not know that Protestant/Catholic rivalry was once intense -- and not long ago at that. Within living memory we were all rather like Ulstermen.
When I was a kid I went to a State (government) school and the Catholic school was just down the road. And we all used to walk home in those days -- none of that namby-pamby nonsense of parents picking us up. So there was opportunity for us to get into mischief. And one sort of mischief was that the kids from the two schools used to chant sectarian rhymes at one another. I suppose it was better than coming to blows. I remember the rhymes very well but I am a bit embarassed about it all now so I will repeat only one of the rhymes: "Mary, Mary, mother of God, baked a cake and it was a sod". Apologies from my 70-year old self for my 10-year old self.
And at that time Protestants and Catholics even tended to go to different shops. Two big Department stores in Brisbane exemplified that: McWhirter's and T.C. Beirne's. Protestants shopped at McWhirter's and Catholics shopped at T.C. Beirne's. It actually felt weird to go into the "wrong" one of those.
And the thought of a Catholic marrying a Protestant was quite rage-provoking. A Protestant father contemplating one of his children marrying a Catholic would utter the most dire warnings against it and back up the warming with threats of disinheritance etc. Catholics were equally vehemently against "intermarriage" but would acquiesce in it as long as the children of the marriage were brought up Catholic.
Now here is the amusing thing: Despite all the rage and heartburn, young Catholic and young Protestant people still married one-another at a great rate. I take some interest in genealogy and when you look at genealogical records in Australia, the number of intermarriages is astounding. It is true of my own relatives and forebears, of course. I have both Irish and English ancestry. Young Catholics and Protestants clearly found one-another fascinating. Forbidden fruit? That could be part of it.
There is a rather good novel by Ruth Park called "Harp in the South" about a Catholic family in Australia about 100 years ago which captures it all rather well. There are two friends -- one Catholic and one Protestant -- who get on very well with one-another -- except on one day of the year -- the day when the Orange order marches and they sing of how "King Billy slew the Papish crew at the battle of Boyne water" etc.
So even in the old days there was goodwill lurking, despite different traditions -- JR
By JR on Thursday, February 20, 2014
Political Orientation and Moral Conviction
Comments on: "Political Orientation and Moral Conviction: A Conservative Advantage or an Equal Opportunity Motivator of Political Engagement?" by Linda J. Skitka G. Scott Morgan Daniel C. Wisneski, University of Illinois at Chicago (Preprint here (PDF))
There is a paper coming out in a book edited by Joe Forgas that tends to throw Haidt's findings into a cocked hat. Haidt found that conservatives were more morally complex than are liberals. Since liberals often proclaim: "There is no such thing as right and wrong", that is not exactly a surprising finding. Liberals do nonetheless use moral language: "Racism is wrong" etc., but I showed long ago (Ray, 1974) that they do so only as a matter of convenience. For them it is just a device to influence others. Any such beliefs are not deeply held.
I'm critical of a few points in the introduction to the paper -- e.g. the homage to the risible Lakoff, who confuses the diachronic with the synchronic, but I think the big problems in the paper are methodological. The use of meta-analyses is in principle admirable but in practice can deteriorate severely where the author has a barrow to push. One of the better known studies in this field did to my particular knowledge omit from consideration around 100 relevant studies -- in order to come to fairly conventional conclusions.
Another problem is the shotgun approach to sampling. Lumping general population samples in the with student samples is most incautious. The two groups often give very different results. One one occasion I repeated a study I had dome among students using a sample of army conscripts. A correlation of .808 among students dropped to something negligible with the more representative sample. I never wrote that study up but I probably should have. It was in the era when "positive" results were essential so it would probably not have been published anyway.
And I am pretty confident that something similar would have happened in the Skitka work. The students would have given complex responses and the ordinary folk would have given much simpler responses. So combining the two would have given you medium complexity across the board and erased Right/Left differences. In short, I don't think Skitka & co, have made their case.
Mother Jones has however welcomed the study. The Left like to think they are moral, despite their propensity for mass murder.
By JR on Sunday, February 16, 2014
So, who are the smartest scientists?
The paper below is a curious one. The authors seem to be making mountains out of molehills. There IS for instance a correlation between IQ and conventional religion but it is slight -- unlikely to be of any practical importance and probably artifactual anyway. See here
But the thing which amused me most was the claim that social scientists are more religious. I spent many years teaching the social sciences in Australian universities and during that time went to a lot of conferences both in Australia and overseas -- where I met many fellow social scientists. And it is true that most social scientists are religious, but the religion is Leftism. Anybody who can still believe in socialism after all the socialist disasters of the 20th century is in the grip of deep faith. I think I only ever met three Christian social scientists. So I would have thought that social scientists were the LEAST religious academic group as far as conventional religions are concerned. So the study below would seem to rely on some very strange sampling. Journal abstract included below
SOCIAL science professors at elite institutions are more likely to be religious and politically extreme than their counterparts in the natural sciences, argues a new paper. Why? Natural scientists are just smarter.
“There is sound evidence of a negative correlation between intelligence and religiosity and between intelligence and political extremism,” reads the paper in the Interdisciplinary Journal on Research and Religion which examines existing data on academic scientists’ IQs by field, and on religious beliefs and political extremism among science professors in the US and Britain. “Therefore the most probable reason behind elite social scientists being more religious than are elite physical scientists is that social scientists are less intelligent.”
The paper, written by Edward Dutton, adjunct professor of cultural anthropology at the University of Oulu, in Finland, and Richard Lynn, a retired professor of psychology from the University of Ulster, in Northern Ireland, who is known for his work on race and IQ, continues: “Intelligence is also a factor in interdisciplinary differences in political extremism, [with] physicists, who have high IQs, being among the least extreme and lower-IQ scholars being among the most extreme.”
In an interview, Dutton said social scientists aren’t stupid, or necessarily extreme in their politics or overly religious. But, statistically speaking, they have lower IQs than their colleagues in biological and physical sciences and are likelier to be extremely conservative or liberal or religious, or both.
Dutton said that there are many similarities between political extremism and religious fundamentalism; in other research, he uses the term “replacement religions” to describe the phenomenon.
“[Physical] scientists are overwhelmingly atheist,” Dutton said. “This is predicted by their high IQ, which allows you to rise above emotion and see through the fallacious, emotional arguments.” Arguments about God are all emotional arguments, he added.
The paper is a meta-analysis of existing data showing several things: that natural scientists have higher IQs than social scientists; that low intelligence “predicts” political extremism and religiosity; and that physical scientists at elite institutions are less likely to believe in God or be politically extreme than their counterparts in the social sciences.
The connection between all three research areas has never been made until now, Dutton said. But — in just one example of potentially problematic methodology — the logic can’t be extended to academe in general. Several studies cited in the paper drawing from a wider mix of colleges and universities than simply the most elite show that life sciences professors are more likely to attend church than their peers in the social sciences, not less. The paper assumes this is because professors at elite institutions are smarter than their peers elsewhere.
The researchers also use IQ as the sole measure of intelligence (they mention Howard Gardner’s multiple forms of intelligence, but argue that they could also be considered personality traits).
The researchers acknowledge some of their limitations, including that some older data in the analysis involve a very small sample size. Dutton and Lynn say that future research involving larger academic samples would be “extremely useful” in exploring these areas in greater depth.
Dutton said he knew his paper would upset some readers, but that he invited feedback from fellow scholars. The point of research, even when controversial, is to “get closer to the truth of human life,” he said.
Interdisciplinary Journal on Research and Religion. 2014 Volume 10, Article 1
Intelligence and Religious and Political Differences Among Members of the U.S. Academic Elite
Many studies have found inverse correlations between intelligence and religiosity, intelligence and political conservatism, and intelligence and political extremism. Other studies have found that academics tend to be significantly less religious and more liberal than the general population. In this article, we argue that interdisciplinary differences in religiosity and political perspective among academics are predicted by interdisciplinary differences in intelligence between academics. Once personality factors correlating with religiosity have been substantially controlled for, physicists, who have higher average intelligence, are less religious than are social scientists, who have lower average intelligence. Physical scientists are also less politically extreme than are social scientists.
By JR on Friday, February 07, 2014
History is crazy
No wonder the Left keep revising history. The reality is so strange that only conservatives could cope with it.
Take for instance the death of Queen Victoria at the age of 81 in 1901. She died in the arms of a member of her family. Who was that family member? You would never guess. It was Kaiser Bill, Wilhelm II, German emperor! He was her grandson.
And yet Germany and Britain were at war only 13 years later.
Such a strange sequence of events requires explanation. Because she had so many daughters, Queen Victoria became the grandmother of Europe. An English princess was a great catch so the German emperor -- father of Kaiser Bill -- got one. Her descendants eventually occupied the thrones of no less than nine European countries
And Edward VII, Victoria's son, who was such a scapegrace in his youth as to be the complete despair of his strait-laced parents, actually turned out to be a very good King. He had the mildly reformist ideas of his father -- Prince Albert -- and was a generally good-natured soul who was known for treating everybody equally, regardless of their rank or importance. So if there was a problem for Britain anywhere in the world, the Foreign Office would send him out to visit. Even as a young man he was a great success abroad. When he visited America in his capacity as Prince of Wales in 1860, he was so popular that he spent months there, meeting just about everybody who was anybody. Prayers for the Royal family were said in Trinity Church, New York, for the first time since 1776.
So on his Royal visits he would shake hands all round, make all the right noises and charm everybody. And that part of the world would then resume lying down peacefully under the British crown. Having met the King himself and finding him such a pleasant and reasonable chap, how could they do otherwise? So against his parents' initial expectations, Edward turned out to be a great asset to British diplomacy. And Edward's wife was the sister of the Tsarina of Russia! And that Tsarina had a son who in time became Tsar Nicholas II of Russia. So the new Tsar was Edward's nephew. Beat that!
And, as it happens, Edward got on well with his nephew the Tsar. But NEITHER got on well with Wilhelm II. Queen Vic. kept the peace between them all while she was alive but after that it all went downhill. So we see that personalities can influence politics. Wilhelm was even a frequent visitor to Balmoral in Vic's lifetime and there are as a result of that a number of photos of Wilhelm in Highland dress.
I have written previously on the multifarious causes of the dreadful WWI. This adds another, though more minor one.
Below is a picture of Wilhelm as a child accompanying his father (later Friedrich III). Both are in Highland dress, at Balmoral. So Queen Victoria's autumn retreat in Scotland was a familiar place for Wilhelm.
By JR on Wednesday, February 05, 2014
Bible critics assume what they have to prove
They say that domestic camels arrived in Israel after the times that the Bible says. But they admit that some camel bones dated from earlier periods have been found. To fit their theory they say that the earlier finds "probably belonged to wild camels". How do they know? They don't. They are just assuming what they have to prove.
A more reasonable summary of the findings would be to say that most people were too poor in earlier periods for many of them to own camels -- hence the rarity of camel remains in those earlier periods.
Dromedary camels are thought to have first been domesticated by humans in Arabia around 3,000 BC. Considering that Arabia and Israel share a land border, how absurd is it to say that domestic camels were unknown in Israel at that time?
Atheists really give me the pip sometimes, even though I am one myself. Why do they have to keep denigrating faith? It seems childish and insecure to me
Camels are mentioned in Biblical stories involving Abraham, Joseph and Jacob as well as other famous characters. But archaeologists have found that the mammals were not domesticated in Israel until centuries after famous figures were said to have ridden them.
They claim this shows that text in the Bible was compiled long after the events described in it and challenges the holy book as a historical document.
Camels were not domesticated in Israel until centuries after the Age of the Patriarchs – when Abraham, Jacob and Issac are said to have lived - between 2,000 and 1,500 BC.
Dr Erez Ben-Yosef and Dr Lidar Sapir-Hen of Tel Aviv University's Department of Archaeology and Near Eastern Cultures used radiocarbon dating to pinpoint the moment when domesticated camels arrived in the southern Levant.
They found camels came in the 9th century BC, not the 12th as previously thought.
‘The introduction of the camel to our region was a very important economic and social development,’ Dr Ben-Yosef said.
‘By analysing archaeological evidence from the copper production sites of the Aravah Valley, we were able to estimate the date of this event in terms of decades rather than centuries,’ he said.
It is believed that camels were originally domesticated in the Arabian Peninsula for use as pack animals sometime towards the end of the second millennium BC.
The oldest known domesticated camel bones were discovered in the Aravah Valley, in the southern Levant, which runs along the Israeli-Jordanian border from the Dead Sea to the Red Sea and come from a time when the valley was an ancient centre for copper production.
Dr Ben-Yosef dated an Aravah Valley copper smelting camp where the domesticated camel bones were found in 2009 and discovered they dated to between the 11th and 9th century BC.
He led another dig in the area in 2013 to determine exactly when domesticated camels appeared in the southern Levant.
Together with Dr Sapir-Hen, he used radiocarbon dating and other techniques to analyse the findings of these digs as well as several others done in the valley.
In all the digs, they found that camel bones were unearthed almost exclusively in archaeological layers dating from the last third of the 10th century BC or later – centuries after the patriarchs lived and decades after the Kingdom of David, according to the Bible.
The few camel bones found in earlier archaeological layers probably belonged to wild camels, which archaeologists think were in the southern Levant from the Neolithic period or even earlier.
LOL! I rather naughtily left a pitfall in my comments above. A reader writes to me that Israel has Southern borders only with Egypt and Jordan. It has no borders with Saudi Arabia. That is true. But I did not mention Saudi Arabia. I spoke of Arabia. Jordan is part of Arabia. Look at any map of the area for starters.
By JR on Tuesday, February 04, 2014
Having sisters: Another elephant discovered
An NYT writer, Charles Blow, has come across some survey findings by Andrew Healy and Neil Malhotra to the effect that people who have sisters are more "sexist" and more likely to vote Republican. There have been all sorts of efforts to turn that finding into something discreditable to conservatives. One theory is that where there are girls around boys get let off from helping with housework and think that is a good racket for the rest of their lives.
The key to understanding the finding is however the word "sexist". It is of course largely a term of abuse. The factual content to it is however that the "sexist" person thinks men and women are different. Thinking that way does of course have all the evidence on its side but what Leftist ever cared about evidence? So, to the Leftist, people who think that way are evil and are rightly referred to with a term of abuse.
Once we get past the abuse, however, the implications of the finding become self-evident: Growing up with girls leaves you in no doubt about how different they are. It is a reality check. Those evil sexists are simply more in touch with how things actually are.
And that also explains the Republican orientation. It is in fact probably more an anti-Democrat orientation. Democrats are always preaching feminist nonsense so people who know from experience how much nonsense it is turn to the realistic party -- the Republican party.
So I am once again a discoverer of elephants in rooms. I have only pointed out the bleeding obvious -- but nothing as simple as "sexism" being realistic can enter a Leftist mind, of course. To them the elephant is invisible.
Steve Sailer has some useful notes on the matter
By JR on Monday, February 03, 2014
Do lesbians make good parents?
Most of the concerns people have about children raised by "two mommies" are social and psychological. But psychology and sociology are playgrounds of the Left. I have taught in both psychology and sociology Departments of Australian universities and find sociologists in particular to be almost amusingly Leftist. Karl Marx is still their chief inspiration.
So you know what to expect when you find studies by social scientists that tell us anything about homosexuality. Homosexuals these days are a positively revered class who can do no wrong. So finding out what is actually going on from such sources is a major challenge. It is however a challenge I often took on in my own research career. If you read the "small print" (usually the "Results" section of a research report) you get at least a hearty laugh. The statistics obtained in the course of the research often contradicted the conclusions drawn by the researcher. But statistics frighten people so they get away with it. I actually used to teach statistics, however, so I had a ball.
And it all comes back to me when I read the latest article in an obsessively Leftist newspaper about homosexual parents. The article pulls no punches. It is headed Study finds same-sex parenting is not harmful for children". No nuances there! An excerpt:
Children raised by same-sex parents fare just as well in their education, emotional and social development as those raised by heterosexual parents, new research shows.
The report on same sex-parented families in Australia, commissioned by the Australian Institute of Family Studies (AIFS), found "there is now strong evidence that same-sex-parented families constitute supportive environments in which to raise children''.
The findings are at odds with Liberal Senator Cory Bernardi's recent comments that the "gold standard" for children's development is having a biological mother and father who are married.
Report author Deb Dempsey, who reviewed all the research on same sex-parented families, said there was a wealth of evidence that showed the children were doing fine."
Well, author Cosima Marriner is right about a conflict of findings. Conservative authors generally come to much more adverse conclusions. So what is going on? I did my usual trick and looked up the original research report. I immediately found that Cosima had been a very naughty girl. The research was about lesbians only. The authors concluded that there was too little research about male homosexuals available to draw any conclusions. So Cosima definitely over-generalized.
The real fun of the fair however came in a section of the report that was rather forbiddingly titled "Methodological issues and studies of children's wellbeing". I reproduce a couple of paragraphs from it:
"Evaluating the effects of family structures upon children's wellbeing and development is complicated, particularly when the population of interest is a very diverse, stigmatised, numeric minority. Some questions have been asked about the methodological rigor of research studies on the wellbeing of children raised in same-sex parented families, by scholars who (implicitly or explicitly) have political or moral objections to same-sex parenting (see Marks, 2012; Regnerus, 2012; Schumm, 2012) and by those who do not. For instance, Tasker and Patterson (2007), two respected psychologists who support the rights of lesbian and gay parented families and have published widely on various aspects of the wellbeing of children raised by lesbian and gay parents, commented that the field would benefit from a wider variety of data collection methods. They noted that most of the data collected about children raised in lesbian and gay parented families comes from self-reports by their parents, supplemented with psychometric testing of children by the research team. Few studies have been blind, or made use of psychometric tests administered independently of the researchers. That said, many researchers emphasise the importance of contextual, qualitative studies in learning about the family experiences and processes in same-sex parented families from the point of view of parents, children and other family members (Biblarz & Savci, 2010; Dempsey, 2012b; Goldberg, 2010; Goldberg, Kinkler, Richardson, & Downing, 2011; Lindsay et al., 2006; Riggs, 2007).
Researchers in this field have noted a range of limitations with regard to how their samples of participants are drawn. Although this is beginning to change, many studies are based on small and homogeneous samples of highly educated and middle-class participants. Many of the comparative studies conducted to date on children or young adults raised in same-sex parented families are based on volunteer samples of participants rather than random samples. This means that it is unknown how representative and generalisable the studies' results are. Further to this, many researchers in this field note that their participants were mostly white and well educated, which does not reflect the likely socio-economic, ethnic and racial diversity of the same-sex parenting population. That said, it is important to emphasise all research designs have limitations and not to dismiss the cumulative findings from many small scale or volunteer sample studies, as some critics of this literature attempt to do (see Marks, 2012; Regnerus, 2012; Schumm, 2012). Amato (2012) indeed pointed out that if there were noteworthy harms accruing to children resulting from parental homosexuality per se, which is often the concern of those scholars who criticise research designs and methodology, these would be revealed in research on high socio-economic, ethnically homogeneous samples of parents and children."
So there you have it. The data was mostly what lesbians say about themselves and their children: Self report studies. Does anybody sniff bias there?
But it gets worse. Most of the studies were of high status parents: Richer and better educated. So the studies were not even a fair sample of lesbians. ANY children of high status parents should have done better at school etc.
And if you look at it with my perverse eye you see a suppressed correlation. If the studies showed (which they mostly did) that the children of such parents only did "as well as" the children of heterosexual families that means that something has been suppressing the status advantage that the Lesbian children should have had. And what could that be? Would it be the fact that they had no daddy? That's what it looks like. Once you control for education in homosexual/heterosexual comparisons, the homosexual children come out looking disadvantaged. Some studies did apparently control for education but it seems that most did not.
So where do we go from there? Is it just too difficult to examine fairly the questions involved? I think it is -- but only if we rely on social science research. Demography is informative too. What if we interview actual prison inmates, drug addicts etc. And what if we find that a higher than proportionate percentage of them do not come from a normal heterosexual family with both a mommy and a daddy regularly present? That is what we find and that is what the redoubtable Senator Bernardi was referring to.
But no research involving people will ever be watertight so in the end we always have to draw our conclusions on a balance of probabilities. And our conclusions will always be influenced by our other beliefs. Cautious conservatives, for instance, will shudder at the thought of experimenting on children -- while Leftists will always think that the existing state of society is so unsatisfactory that anything which might improve it should be tried. It would be nice if Leftists would admit to uncertainty on some occasions though. I just did. Are you listening, Cosima? -- JR.
By JR on Saturday, February 01, 2014
Feminists will always be a disgruntled minority of harpies huddled in a corner moaning to one-another
Most women will acknowledge some feminist sympathies -- equal pay for equal work etc. But I am not talking about those women. I am talking about the feminists you encounter at universities and writing in the papers. They are often quite good at changing official policies (generally set by men) but their influence on the behaviour of other women is minimal.
The big and unsurmountable problem for feminists is that young women are intensely interested in young men. They are more interested in young men than young men are interested in them. As a result, young women tend to PANDER to young men. There! I've said it. The word that sends feminists molten. A women pandering to a man deserves the lowest depths of hell and damnation from a feminist perspective.
I am moved to those thoughts by something I saw this morning as I was having a cup of tea with Anne at the seaside (Wynnum). It was a classical example of the pandering I just mentioned.
What was happening was that two young men -- perhaps around age 20 -- were fishing without much success. But fishing they were and they stuck at it despite catching only the occasional tiddler. And they had a girl with them, a rather aspirational girl of about 18, about 5'5" tall with fair skin, blue eyes and blonde hair. And she was in great shape wearing tight short denim shorts.
So what was she doing? She was just there for the company. She did have her own fishing rod and cast it in a few times but mostly she just pottered around or sat in a nearby shelter watching. She was there because the men were there and for no other reason. They paid their fishing much more attention than they paid her but she was nonetheless in great good humor, full of smiles. She was happy just to be there with the men.
And that is how it goes in the teenage years. And as the years progress it gets even worse from a feminist perspective. Young women enter into intimate relationships with men -- not even requiring a wedding ring first these days. But a wedding is still the vision for most women.
So feminists are up against human nature just as much as other Leftists before them. Leftists once thought that they could mould a "new Soviet man" but were thwarted by human nature. They simply drove Soviet man to drink. A new feminist man is just as remote. Feminized men tend in fact to be rather despised by most women. Most women like men to be men. Look at all the women who "wait" for husbands and boyfriends in the armed forces who are "away" on deployment. Such a relationship looks a very bad deal from a certain point of view. But men in the forces tend to be real men -- and women will put up with a lot to have such a man. Where it matters, feminism is an abject failure.
By JR on Wednesday, January 29, 2014
Why I am a jellyfish when it comes to global warming theory
Most climate skeptics accept the theory that a rise in atmospheric CO2 will cause a rise in terrestrial temperature. Where they differ from Warmists is in estimating the quantum of the temperature rise. Looking at both the theory and the data, skeptics think the effect of more CO2 will be so minute as to be probably undetectable.
There is however another camp of skeptics who think the whole theory is bunk. They think that a rise in CO2 CANNOT affect temperature. Such thinkers coalesce to some degree around the Principia Scientific publication run by John O'Sullivan. Their "Bible" is Slaying the Sky Dragon.
One would think that both types of skeptics would get along with one-another in perfect amiability but that is not always so. The "Slayers" tend to be rather shrill critics of the mainstream critics. In their dogmatism and hunger for consensus they seem rather like Warmists at times.
So I am a jellyfish. I take no side in the dispute. Either side could be right in my view. I think that Warmism has long ago left the realm of science and become a political creed of the Left. So the important thing is that both skeptical groups piss on global warming fears. Just as in politics generally, I think you have to have a big tent for your side to win the contest with the Left. And I would be happy to have a beer with anyone in the tent.
But I was not always a jellyfish. For a while the slayers had convinced me. I thought that global warming theory transgressed the first and second laws of thermodynamics. After a while, however, I concluded that those laws could be applied only to convective processes in the atmosphere, whereas global warming theory is about radiative heat transfer. At that point I had a small correspondence with theoretical physicist Lubos Motl and he assisted me towards a view that the theory could be expressed in a way not contrary to the law of physics.
So what I now make of the theory depends on the old law of the conservation of energy. Energy is not created or destroyed but just changes guise. So when energy (heat) from the sun hits the earth, that energy does not just vanish. It does a number of things and one of those things is that it bounces back in the direction whence it came. And when it hits a water or CO2 molecule it in turn bounces off that. But it will bounce in all dirtections so only a small portion of the bounced radiation will bounce back to hit the earth. And since CO2 molelcules are a tiny proportion of the atmosphere, you have only a small proportion of a tiny proportion of the heat being re-radiated to the surface by CO2 molecules. So the total effect must be very small indeed. So even in theory the Warmists are wrong to proclaim a detectable effect of CO2 levels.
And what the theoory says is of course exactly what we observe. Temperatures have remained stable over 17 years during which CO2 levels have risen sharply. So there has been no detectable effect of CO2 levels. Any effect has been too tiny to detect.
But in their typical way, one of the slayers had a go at me recently for my view that, even given their own theory, warmists are barking up the wrong tree. I reproduce the correspondence:
Spotted this sentence in your lead story today: "On the global warming theory as I see it, CO2 reflection is such a minor source of heating that the effects of variations in it SHOULD be so minuscule as to be undetectable ..." You've got a PhD, so where do you reckon the "warming" comes from then? Think a bit further and you can only come to one conclusion: in the open atmosphere, CO2 can only act as a coolant, never a warming agent. Provide me with just one piece of actual observed proof that there is any warming off atmospheric CO2.
I am agnostic about the theory. The form of it that makes some sense draws on the law of conservation of energy. If back radiation from the earth hits something opaque in the atmosphere the energy should bounce and some of that should hit the earth. But since CO2 is a tiny fraction of the atmosphere, its effect should be tiny. That's the theory but reality could be different
The Slayer replied:
The entire basis of the "theory" you mention is incorrect, hence my email to you in the first place. The concept of "heating by back-radiation" is a myth, has never been observed in Nature and can in fact not exist! Imagine if such a heating mechanism did exist, we'd be able to build super-efficient heaters where for an input of 1kW we get 2kW out - or any wattage higher than the input. For sure, any effect off a tiny fraction is tiny, but the only effect that can be scientifically ascribed to adding any gas to the atmosphere is a cooling effect, never a warming effect. With CO2 being a radiatively active gas, it will in fact act as a super-coolant! Only when captured in a bottle will the walls of the bottle warm up more when CO2 is inside, because the re-radiated energy can not get out without first dumping its energy into the material of the bottle. Out in the open, that very same property will cause extra fast cooling of the CO2 molecule, where O2 and N2 can only rely on conductive and convective heatloss. Also remember that in the bigger picture, the sun dumps its heat onto the surface, the air then takes that heat and convects it upwards and sideways with wind - a heatloss situation at all times! Never can more heat be created by recycling the original solar heat - if only! Delayed cooling is not warming; that delay can at best increase the average temperature - a rather meaningless concept as all weather stations are measuring the air at some 5-7ft off the ground!
I don't think you have grasped the law of conservation of energy. Where does the energy (heat) go when it hits a CO2 molecule?"
The Slayer replied:
Thanks Ray, there is no point to any further comms.
Does the brevity of the final reply mean that I won the argument? I think so but I also think that the important thing is to have the discussion. Winning and losing are not what science is about. And I am still open to conviction either way. I could be wrong!
By JR on Friday, January 24, 2014
Please Take Me off Your List of Hate
Mrs Instapundit sends off a fiery reply below to the latest attempt to "psychologize" conservatives. Leftists have been doing that at least since 1950 and the amusing thing is that most of what the Leftists write is transparent projection: They accuse conservatives of what are their own faults -- hate, authoritarianism etc. So it is no wonder that their attempts to substantiate their accusations through actual psychological research eventually come to naught. Background here and here.
The "polarized mind" concept below is just the latest version of a very old accusation. On previous occasions it has been referred to by Leftists as "intolerance of ambiguity", "rigity" "dogmatism" and lack of "openness". When you know how closed off from evidence Leftists are, you can see why they project that on to conservatives. Background here -- JR.
So I received this press release about a newly released book by psychologist Kirk J. Schneider Ph.D:
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
A Psychologist Diagnoses the Tea Party-and other extremists threatening our world. In “The Polarized Mind: Why It’s Killing Us and What We Can Do about It,” Kirk J. Schneider Ph.D., calls for a new and deeper psychological understanding of our greatest political and social conflicts and those who drive them.
It’s easy for liberals to snicker at the misspelled signs and misplaced anger of the Tea Party, but psychologist Kirk J. Schneider says that we dismiss or diminish groups like this at our own peril. Schneider, the author of THE POLARIZED MIND: WHY IT’S KILLING US AND WHAT WE CAN DO ABOUT IT (University Professor Press, 2013, paperback), has done an exhaustive study of extremist movements throughout history and he says it’s time for us to look more seriously at what he calls “the polarized mind.” In “The Polarized Mind: Why It’s Killing Us and What We Can Do about It,” Kirk J. Schneider Ph.D., calls for a new and deeper psychological understanding of our greatest political and social conflicts and those who drive them.
“You can see gradations of the ‘polarized mind’ at work in virtually all destructive political movements from Nazi Germany to Maoist China to our very own Tea Party. In fact, it is the pervasive malady of the 20 and 21st Centuries,” says Schneider.
How does the Tea Party fit in? Many among its ranks have seen their lives profoundly upended by economic, social, and political trends beyond their control. They tend to be middle class people who are mired in debt and have seen a sharp decline in their living standard due to the shift to a service-industry economy. They often face stiff competition for low-wage jobs and when they land them they may be confined to dull, meaningless work day after day. They resent any government help for people who are even less fortunate and train their anger on those who are the least responsible for their plight. And it’s not just an empty wallet that drives them. It’s also a sense of social dislocation. “I think many in this movement are embittered over the increasing complexity of contemporary life. They look at the 9/11 attack-which once would have seemed unthinkable-the decrease in church attendance in many places, the loss of two-parent households, gender equality, the lack of simple ‘good guy’ and ‘bad guy’ presentations of the U.S. vs. the rest of the world, and they feel profound existential anxiety-as if the ground beneath them is giving way,” says Schneider.
Although you won’t find “polarized mind” in any official diagnostic manual, for Schneider it’s crucial that the psychological community and the world at large rethink our ideas about mental illness if we are to understand the forces at play in the world. “When we think of mental illness, we think of a discrete and politically powerless group of people who have received a diagnosis, but if you look at the key criteria for diagnoses it’s abundantly clear that they describe vast swaths of the population, not a marginalized group,” says Schneider. Look, for example, at some of the traits of narcissistic personality disorder or psychopathy: A callous disregard for the feelings of others, the reckless disregard for the safety of others, a sense of entitlement, arrogance, a grandiose sense of self-importance. These traits are readily seen in the Tea Party and other extremist groups.
“No one can or should deny the historical forces that have shaped movements like the Tea Party, but to overlook or dismiss the psychological factors that are linked to them is to have less than a full understanding of what makes extremism tick-and how we can defuse it,” says Schneider. Recognizing the polarized mind when we see it is the first step.
Here is the reply I sent back to Lorna Garano:
"How DARE YOU send me this trash associating law abiding American citizens with Nazi Germany and Maoist China. I am a psychologist who has sympathy for my fellow Americans who are so “extremist” that they believe in lower taxes and the Second Amendment. Horrors!
What is “killing us” are polarized minds like Kirk J. Schneider Ph.D who is so narrow-minded that he thinks those who have different political beliefs than himself are the enemy and seeks to assign them with a “diagnosis.” What is truly extremist and scary to those of a more conservative or libertarian persuasion is that so many psychologists such as the one below are such political hacks for the Democratic Party. Please take me off your list of hate.
Helen Smith, PhD"
By JR on Thursday, January 23, 2014
Leftist hate in Australia -- a personal observation
I am enrolled in the Queensland electorate of Griffith, former Prime Minister Kevin Rudd's old seat. I used to get a nice Christmas card from Kevvy every year while he was there. So I will be voting in the by-election caused by Kevvy's retirement after his recent defeat in the federal election.
The LNP (conservative) candidate for the by-election is Dr. Bill Glasson, a most energetic campaigner and an ophthalmologist by trade. His father, also Bill Glasson, was a minister in the long-running Bjelke-Petersen (conservative) government of Queensland. So the present Bill has name recognition.
I was sitting in my usual Buranda brunch destination about mid-morning yesterday when Bill and a campaign assistant walked in -- also seeking brunch. The assistant was a nice-looking young lady who might have been his daughter. She had "Vote Bill Glasson" written all over her t-shirt so she was at any event a helper.
Bill & Co. sat down beside a lady in a green dress. The restaurant was busy so some tables were right up against one another. Bill chose one such table. As the lady beside him got up to leave, she launched a furious verbal assault on Bill: Quite egregious behaviour in a restaurant.
I was too far away to hear what she was saying and I am pretty deaf anyway but a professional actor could not have done a better job of portraying rage and hate than this woman did -- finger pointing, tensed-up body and all other conceivable hostile body language. Bill just sat there. She gave up after a few minutes and walked out. She must have thought of more things to say, however, as she shortly thereafter came back into the restaurant and resumed her angry tirade at Bill.
It was a most remarkable assault on a man the woman did not know personally and who has never been a member of any government. She appeared to have been blaming Bill for something some government had done but why she blamed Bill for it was obscure.
When I had finished eating, I went over, shook Bill's hand, introduced myself as a Griffith voter and said I would be voting for him. I then asked him what the lady had been on about. He said it was confused but it was something about hospitals. All Australian public hospitals are in a mess so that might be understandable. The government that got Qld. hospitals into a mess was however the recently departed Leftist government. So again, why blame Bill?
I then said to Bill: "She was full of hate, wasn't she?". He agreed. Just his conservative political identity was enough to fire her up.
UPDATE: A reader has sent me the following story:
This happened to me while my family and I were in Orlando, Florida attending my nieces wedding. My father (85 yo) mother (82), sister (56), brother-in-law (64), my wife(49) and I (47) were out eating dinner at a sparsely populated Chinese restaurant.
My brother-in- law jokingly asked me "so how do you feel about Obama?", in response to a statement I said about taxation. I made no reply to this.
Shortly thereafter, a woman left the table near us very quickly and went to get the check rather than wait for it to arrive at the table she was sharing with a man.
The next thing I know, the fat, long haired man is towering over our table and he starts to bellow. He told us how sick to death he was of us right-wing fanatics and we had better get used to the leftist running the country. He told us how much he hated us homophobic, racist assholes and wished we were all dead.
Keep in mind, my brother-in-law is Puerto Rican/ Italian mix and my nephew is gay and we had mentioned nothing racial or about sex all evening. He just lit into us.
After I had enough, I got up and motioned for him to follow me outside. He asked why should he go outside. I replied that was were I was going to tune him up. He did not follow me outside. He was taller and heavier than I am, but not near as solid.
This is happening more and more in America. F*ck 'em, let them suck on knuckles. This being polite to liberal assholes only begets more abuse. End it swiftly and brutally.
By JR on Wednesday, January 22, 2014
Ya gotta laugh: Those significant hundredths of one degree
I reproduce below a current news report derived from NOAA and GISS. You will see that continuing warming is proclaimed with no hint that the data might be troublesome to Warmism. It is classical warming propaganda much as we hear every year.
I have been naughty, however. I spent about 2 minutes on a Google search to find out what the actual figures were. Here is a quote from NOAA:
Do you see what they are doing? The differences in temperature that they rely on for a judgment that something was warmest are in hundredths of a degree! They treat unbelievably tiny differences in temperature that exist only as a statistical artifact as if they told us something! For instance they contrast the 2013 anomaly of .62C with 2010, which is .66C. The difference is only 4 hundredths of one degree Celsius!
"The year 2013 ties with 2003 as the fourth warmest year globally since records began in 1880. The annual global combined land and ocean surface temperature was 0.62°C (1.12°F) above the 20th century average of 13.9°C (57.0°F). This marks the 37th consecutive year (since 1976) that the yearly global temperature was above average. Currently, the warmest year on record is 2010, which was 0.66°C (1.19°F) above average."
Is there any point at which they would concede that a difference is too small to be taken seriously? Thousandths of one degree? Millionths of one degree? Medieval theologians used to debate how many angels could dance on the head of a pin. Theology is alive and well among Warmists!
America's two top scientific agencies have released separate reports on last year's climate, confirming the global warming trend is continuing.
The American space agency, NASA, releases a climate report each year - alongside a separate report from its sister agency, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA).
The two agencies collect their data separately and their reports show slightly different results. But the trend is clear. At least nine of the warmest years on record have happened since 2000.
According to NOAA, 2013 was the fourth warmest year for the planet since records began in 1880.
Ocean temperatures were half a degree Celsius above the 20th century average.
NASA says carbon dioxide is at its highest level in the atmosphere in 800,000 years, having risen from 285 parts per million in 1880 to 400 parts per million last year.
Unless current trends change, the world should expect each of the coming decades to be warmer than the last, NASA climatologist Gavin Schmidt says.
He describes the warming of the past few decades as "unusual," and urges people not to judge whether climate change is happening or not based on random weather events like cold snaps.
"The long-term trends in climate are extremely robust," he said.
"People have a very short memory when it comes to their own experience of weather and climate, and the only way that we can have a long-term assessment of what is going on is by looking at the data."
Last year also marked the 37th year in a row with higher than average global temperatures.
By JR on Tuesday, January 21, 2014
Warmist proud of censoring dissent
In view of the great difficulty skeptics have at getting papers published in academic journals, one group of prominent skeptical scientists decided to set up their own journal. No problem, you would think. All sides of a debate should be aired.
But Warmists did not see it that way at all. They went all out to pressure the publisher (Copernicus) to ditch the journal -- which it did. Prominent Warmist James Annan is even proud of his efforts in that direction. He crows:
"Kudos to Copernicus for the rapid and decisive way in which they dealt with this problem. The problems at the journal were was first brought to my attention by ThingsBreak just last night, I emailed various people to express my concerns and the journal (which was already under close scrutiny by the publisher) was closed down within 24h."
The book burners are here! Such efforts by Warmists clearly have more in common with totalitarianism than with science and convey nothing so much as fear and panic. A commenter on his blog sums up the strange version of science behind such efforts:
"You've got to love climate science when you see episodes like this.
I think it is safe to say that in no other science do you see such overt power games played out like this.
It is clear that it is not just the retraction of a publication that is of primary importance here, it is the spin that comes off that retraction that is most important.
"Pour encourager les autres"
Since the ostensible reason given in the letter was that the publishers were "alarmed" at criticism of the IPCC it is obvious the lesson an observer should take is that any attempt to go out on a limb and "alarm" people must be shown to be wrong and is not to be encouraged.
You guys in climate must be so proud to have the best policed science that humanity has ever seen."
By JR on Friday, January 17, 2014
Prevalence of psychopathy in politics
As I have pointed out at length elsewhere, there are many reasons why people can have hate in their hearts for the society around them. But those who have that hate are the Left. And it is that hate which makes them want to change us all.
The anger and hate is sometimes so strong that it is visible -- Mrs Clinton with TWO clenched fists. Even the Communist salute requires only one. The fist is the emblem of the Left. It tells you what they want to do.
But a major reason for the hate is ego. The hater thinks highly of himself and resents that the world does not give him the praise and rewards that he thinks are his due.
It is hard to know for certain how much Leftism is driven in that way. It is very evident in Leftist leaders but is it widespread among the voters? When people are questioned immediately after voting in Presidential elections, the reasons that Democrat-voters give for their vote seem to be founded mainly on profound ignorance of the facts and issues. Democrat candidates are blamed for what Republicans do and vice versa.
For all that, however, many ordinary people who favour the Left often do express the same resentment of the world that we see in Leftist leaders. I can warrant that from the many social attitude surveys I did in my social science research career.
As I also set out at length elsewhere, however, many Leftist leaders are not only egotists but are in fact the ultimate egotists -- psychopaths, people who have no real concern for other people at all -- people to whom only their own self-interest is visible. Though their psychopathy is "sub-clinical", i.e. it is subdued enough to keep them out of trouble with law enforcement and the mental health system.
So when both the leadership of the Left and a substantial part of their supporters are psychopathic, we clearly have one half of the political spectrum that is substantially insane. Beneath their superficial charm lies a serious mental defect.
That such a pathology has engulfed half of politics is of course extremely disturbing. My comment (during my research career) that psychopathy is often successful in various ways appears to have been confirmed in spades. It even appears in fact to have been reproductively successful, which is very alarming. We now have a substantially psychopathic population around us.
That psychopathy has been reproductively successful for many years now is not hard to fathom. As I have pointed out psychopaths seem to have a magic way with women. The women eventually get disillusioned but pregnancies often occur in the interim. And these days the children of such pregnancies will normally survive to adulthood. So there has been a gradual but steady drip of psychopathy into the population. And the "soft" penal practices of the current era have greatly facilitated that. Criminals are now rarely executed but are released back into the population to continue their mayhem. And a substantial number of those criminals are psychopaths.
No wonder our Leftist political opponents often seem to be off the planet -- JR
That "100 months" prophecy
In early January 2006 the BBC held a sort of Old Fashioned Revival Hour in which top BBC people got together with top Greenie fanatics and helped prop up one-another's belief that Global Warming was the One True Faith. You can read about it here.
One little excerpt from the report of what went on there fascinated me:
"Andrew Simms of the New Economics Foundation, who argued there were only 100 months left to save the planet"
100 months is 8 years and 4 months and if we count forward from then we arrive at April 2014. We're nearly there! But the planet looks much the same as it did in 2006 so it looks like Simms is yet another Warmist false prophet.
But the planet may have a reprieve. In August 2008 Simms said we still had 100 months at that time! I wonder what refined calculations went into that revision?
Warmists are such clowns. Perhaps we should not berate them too heavily. Laughing at them is a bit like laughing at the disabled. Their mental fixations certainly disable their reasoning powers (if any).
Main genes for IQ now isolated
This is much sooner than anyone expected. The .90 correlation between a gene set and IQ mentioned below is historic. Correlations don't get much better than that in psychology. The IQ deniers have always looked pretty silly in the light of the evidence but I cannot see that they have any room to move now at all -- JR
Factor Analysis of Population Allele Frequencies as a Simple, Novel Method of Detecting Signals of Recent Polygenic Selection: The Example of Educational Attainment and IQ
Davide Piffer, Interdisciplinary Bio Central, November 27, 2013
Weak widespread (polygenic) selection is a mechanism that acts on multiple SNPs simultaneously. The aim of this paper is to suggest a methodology to detect signals of polygenic selection using educational attainment as an example. Educational attainment is a polygenic phenotype, influenced by many genetic variants with small effects. Frequencies of 10 SNPs found to be associated with educational attainment in a recent genome-wide association study were obtained from HapMap, 1000 Genomes and ALFRED. Factor analysis showed that they are strongly statistically associated at the population level, and the resulting factor score was highly related to average population IQ (r=0.90). Moreover, allele frequencies were positively correlated with aggregate measures of educational attainment in the population, average IQ, and with two intelligence increasing alleles that had been identified in different studies. This paper provides a simple method for detecting signals of polygenic selection on genes with overlapping phenotypes but located on different chromosomes. The method is therefore different from traditional estimations of linkage disequilibrium. This method can also be used as a tool in gene discovery, potentially decreasing the number of SNPs that are included in a genome-wide association study, reducing the multiple-testing problem and required sample sizes and consequently, financial costs.
By JR on Tuesday, January 14, 2014
Big attack on Lindzen comes now he has retired
The Guardian has just put up a supposed dismantling of Lindzen's scientific expertise by two old hard-heads of Warmism. Nuccitelli in particular never accepts any fact that is detrimental to Warmism. He has always got some ad hoc reasoning that enables him to wriggle out from under it.
The article has provoked widespread derision from climate skeptics -- who accuse it of fudging the facts "hell West and crooked". But I gather that no-one is publishing their views in anticipation of Lindzen himself doing a rejoinder.
I did however have a close look at the article myself and when you dig down you find that all the "proofs" of Warmism that they quote go back to tendentious claims made by other Warmists. It's a case of Warmists quoting Warmists to prove that Warmists are right!
Let me give an example of that:
I was particularly fascinated by their claim: "The 15-year 'pause' myth? Completely debunked". Since even many prominent Warmists accept the pause as fact this is a good example of Nuccitelli refusing to retreat an inch from Warmism. No contrary evidence or argument can move him. He is the perfect dogmatist.
But what is the basis of his dogmatism in this instance? I followed back his links and his basis for rejecting the pause is a paper by Cowtan & Way which said that the orthodox HADCRUT record was erroneous because it left out the temperature record in areas where there was no temperature record -- such as parts of the Arctic and Antarctic.
So how do you get a temperature record from a place where there is no temperature record? Easy. You make it up! They used a statistical estimation technique called "kriging" to produce the missing figures but in the end it's all just a guesstimate. And that the missing areas all showed lots of Warming is just a coincidence of course! Since nobody doubts that the vast Antarctic has been cooling overall the kriging has obviously not captured the facts.
So you see the shallow ice that Nuccitelli is prepared to walk on to preserve his convictions. With him, there is no honest estimation of the truth based on the balance of the evidence -- just a determination to admit nothing and concede nothing contrary to Warmism -- JR
By JR on Sunday, January 12, 2014
"Essentialism": A new stick to beat conservatives with
This latest fashion in psychological research was brought to my attention in an article by Matthew Hutson, a journalist with some qualifications in psychology. I made some rather scathing comments on Hutson's article here. In reply, Hutson referred me to the academic journal article which was the chief underpinning of his thinking. The article is "Social Class Rank, Essentialism, and Punitive Judgment" by Kraus & Keltner (2013). I thought I might offer a brief evisceration of it.
Essentialism seems primarily to mean belief in genetic determination. If you believe that a peron is as he is because of his genes, you are an essentialist. By that criterion conservatives are likely to be essentialists. And the authors clearly think essentialists are a bad lot. So who are these essentialists? In good Marxist fashion, the authors say that your social class position determines that. So they selected some statements to the effect that your class position was largely genetically determined and correlated that with your opinion of your own class position. I myself found that your subjective estimation of your social class position was a powerful predictor of other class-related variables back in 1971, so I have no quarrel with them on that score.
What they found in their Study I and Study II was however quite contrary to the Marxist theory. They found that there was virtually no overlap (a 4% overlap; r = .20) between their measures and your social class. High social class people were almost equally divided over whether class was genetically determined or not. So class was NOT behind "essentialist" beliefs.
That might have stopped our dynamic duo but it did not. In Study III they looked for other things behind "essentialism". The disappointing results of their first two studies do however seem to have disheartened them. Their next experiment was very low quality indeed. They told a small group of students some lies and then asked them questions about how strongly they would punish certain offences. If they were serious about measuring punitiveness, they might have used my approach instead of the very ad hoc approach they did use. Be that as it may, however, the main effect in their analysis was not even statistically significant, let alone meaningful.
Not discouraged, however, they went on to study 4, in which they used tricks to change what class people thought they belonged in. They then examined how these "manipulated" class perceptions related to punitiveness. They found some weak effects on type of punishment desired by people in these "manipulated" classes. In other words, even by abandoning reality altogether they still could not find much in the way of class effects.
With such disappointing results, you will be surprised at their conclusion:
"Social class is a primary determinant of rank in human social
hierarchy, and it profoundly shapes perceptions of the social environment".
Their data if fact warrant the following conclusion:
"Social class is a primary determinant of rank in human social
hierarchy, but it negligibly shapes perceptions of the social environment"
They knew what they were going to conclude from the beginning and stuck with that. All the experimentation they did was just window dressing that they did not even believe in themselves. There is no evidence at all that essentialists are the bad guys they were intended to be -- JR