Thursday, December 13, 2007

Books: None of the Above: Books: The New Yorker

Books: None of the Above: Books: The New Yorker: "Flynn then talked about what we’ve learned from studies of adoption and mixed-race children—and that evidence didn’t fit a genetic model, either. If I.Q. is innate, it shouldn’t make a difference whether it’s a mixed-race child’s mother or father who is black. But it does: children with a white mother and a black father have an eight-point I.Q. advantage over those with a black mother and a white father. "

This is very interesting and I think this is known at some levels by everyone. One of my nephews has had a hard time adopting a child because they don't photograph well. Most mothers like their children to go to "pretty" parents. This one black mother wanted her child to go to the smartest parents they could find. His finishing up a Ph.D. and she has a Masters. That was good enough for her.

“The mind is much more like a muscle than we’ve ever realized,” Flynn said. “It needs to get cognitive exercise. It’s not some piece of clay on which you put an indelible mark.”

They finally realized this?! Everyone I know would say that was totally flaming obvious.

I.Q. does measure something and is a good predictor of academic success but is mostly useless outside of academia. Bill Gates isn't 24,000 times smarter then average but he is 24,000 times richer.

The Flynn Effect has odd implications:
" If we work in the opposite direction, the typical teen-ager of today, with an I.Q. of 100, would have had grandparents with average I.Q.s of 82—seemingly below the threshold necessary to graduate from high school. And, if we go back even farther, the Flynn effect puts the average I.Q.s of the schoolchildren of 1900 at around 70, which is to suggest, bizarrely, that a century ago the United States was populated largely by people who today would be considered mentally retarded."
Obviously I.Q. is more complex then what the tests are able to measure and people have not thought through the implications of what renorming the test means.

That article goes into that. Well worth reading and the arguments are just beginning.

Everyone has their time, everyone has energy and health which effects their time and they have talents, certain innate capabilities that allow them to pick certain skills more easily then others can. It is what we choose to do with these things that make us what we are.

"It is our choices Harry, that show what we truly are, far more than our abilities." -Dumbledore

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