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If all the thick people have loads of kids then will this make the UK dumb? Watch

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    (Original post by Jam198)

    It will like evolutionary regression. The low IQ, low skills, low potential populace will be the overwhelming majority.
    What, they aren't already?
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    Actually I don't think intelligence is everything, people can make incredible contributions and be stupid as ****. Some parts of this thread sound a bit like the educated middle classes looking down on the less educated.
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    (Original post by JordanR)
    no

    read about regression to the mean
    By that argument humans would never have evolved greater intelligence than other primates. UC Davis economist addresses this in a response to critics of his arguments in 'A Farewell to Alms' as follows:

    This is just a misunderstanding of the concept of regression to the mean. If McCloskey was
    right farmyard animals would all be at their medieval sizes still, and instead of the wonderful modern extravagance of dog breeds all dogs would have the characteristics of wolves and would make bad house pets. As a further reduction as absurdum man would never have evolved from apes in the first place.

    The reason is that if we take a population that varies on some characteristic, such as height, and eliminate the bottom 10 percent of the height distribution in one generation then we will for all time change the average height of that population. This is because we have changed the average underlying average genotype of the population. Because of regression to the mean the long run effect will not be as great as on the current generation. Because of random and environmental effects some of the people we removed had a large genotype, and some people we left in had the small genotype. But all regression to the mean in future generations will be to this higher mean. If we keep removing the bottom 10 percent of the population then over generations average height will keep increasing, and the variance of height diminishing, until we get to the maximum genetic potential for height in the population.4
    A Response to Critics (European Review of Economic History, August, 2008)
    http://www.econ.ucdavis.edu/faculty/...%20revised.pdf


    As Steve Hsu, who is a core member of the Beijing Genomics Institute's Cognitive Genomics Project, points out - there are a couple of examples of the reverse trend to what you see today, which could have lead to higher population average abililty.

    So we have at least two documented cases of the descendants of the rich replacing the poor over an extended period of time. My guess is that this kind of population dynamics was quite common in the past. (Today we see the opposite pattern!) Could this type of natural selection lead to changes in quantitative, heritable traits over a relatively short period of time?

    Consider the following simple model, where X is a heritable trait such as intelligence or conscientiousness or even height. Suppose that X has narrow sense heritability of one half. Divide the population into 3 groups:

    Group 1 bottom 1/6 in X; < 1 SD below average
    Group 2 middle 2/3 in X; between -1 and +1 SD
    Group 3 highest 1/6 in X; > 1 SD above average

    Suppose that Group 3 has a reproductive rate which is 10% higher than Group 2, whereas Group 1 reproduces at a 10% lower rate than Group 2. A relatively weak correlation between X and material wealth could produce this effect, given the demographic data above (the rich outreproduced the poor almost 2 to 1!). Now we can calculate the change in population mean for X over a single generation. In units of SDs, the mean changes by roughly 1/6 ( .1 + .1) 1/2 or about .02 SD. (I assumed assortative mating by group.) Thus it would take roughly 50 generations, or 1k years, under such conditions for the population to experience a 1 SD shift in X.
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    (Original post by PostgradMatt)
    Actually I don't think intelligence is everything, people can make incredible contributions and be stupid as ****. Some parts of this thread sound a bit like the educated middle classes looking down on the less educated.
    Of course. Nonetheless,statistically at a national level cognitive ability is a driver of macro-economic and social development. And lower average cognitive abilities tend to be linked to a range of social problems, from delinquency to health issues to welfare dependency. So the less smart the population is on average the more social problems you can expect.

    http://www.udel.edu/educ/gottfredson...hygmatters.pdf
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    (Original post by Octohedral)
    It's true that evolution favours reproduction and survival, not intelligence.

    However, I don't think the situation is as dire as you say. So yes, it's not great for the UK if lawyers and academics have one child and Vicky Pollard has 8. However, I don't think it's an imminent problem. Besides, if you try to enforce any kind of child policy you enter a whole new minefield.
    The interesting thing is that for a significant period some countries the trend was in the opposite direction. UC economist Greg Clark discusses this in the case of England, and Steve Hsu also notes China as a possible example.

    Now the question is whether the downward trend can be reversed or at least stalled. Professor James Flynn noted that scores had been rising 'The Flynn Effect' but even he is concerned about current trends. He likens it to what would happen if the shortest people had the most children - the population would invariably get shorter (intelligence has similar heritability to height). The trend in NZ is similar to that in other western countries - roughly 1 pt drop per generation.

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    (Original post by Jacob :))
    Directly stopping stupid people having kids isn't the answer. Educate them and their children so they are no longer stupid is the answer.
    .
    That would be like expecting teaching short kids basketball and hoping they'll become NBA players. Cognitive ability has similar heritability to height.
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    (Original post by Jam198)
    If all the thick people have loads of kids then will this make the UK dumb?.
    No because intelligence doesn't work like that.

    (Original post by Jam198)
    Middle class and educated people either go abroad e.g. Australia and NZ, or they stay in the UK and have no kids or 1/2 and not 6-7 like the UnderClass people. All the high IQ people will be swallowed up by the low IQ people.
    The direct link between IQ and class isn't that strong. There is a good link between occupation and IQ, and occupation and class, however.

    Also, I've yet to find anything which supports this supposed "stupid people have more children".
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    Anyone care define the word "smart" or more "intelligent".
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    (Original post by Gray Wolf)
    Anyone care define the word "smart" or more "intelligent".
    Dear God no.
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    (Original post by Farm_Ecology)

    Also, I've yet to find anything which supports this supposed "stupid people have more children".
    How hard did you look? Note that Professor Flynn is very left wing politically and his own research has shown rising scores 'The Flynn Effect'. Nonetheless, he acknowledges the trend in NZ, which is similar to other Western countries.

    An internationally recognised expert on intelligence warns New Zealand children could get dumber in three or four generations unless women with higher education started producing more babies.

    Otago University emeritus professor Dr Jim Flynn was commenting on census figures that show mothers without a higher education were the anchor of New Zealand's current fertility rate.

    "Everyone knows if we only allowed short people to reproduce there would be a tendency in terms of genes for height to diminish. Intelligence is no different from other human traits," he told the Sunday Star-Times.

    "A persistent genetic trend which lowered the genetic quality for brain physiology would have some effect eventually."

    Statistics show women without tertiary qualifications who had reached their early 40s had produced 2.57 babies each.

    In contrast, women with a higher education were producing just 1.85 babies each.
    Note that prior to the Industrial Revolution the opposite was the case in the UK. Also, in China the wealthier groups had more children so you had selection in the opposite direction. Now the trend is towards Idiocracy
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    (Original post by Gray Wolf)
    Anyone care define the word "smart" or more "intelligent".
    See the Google presentation by Steve Hsu who is working with the Beijing Genomics Institute's Cognitive Genomics Project. Also, he discusses it in this post:

    To define IQ, or the general factor g of cognitive ability, we first define some different tests of cognitive ability, i.e., which measure capabilities like memory, verbal ability, spatial ability, pattern recognition, etc. Of course this set of tests is somewhat arbitrary, just as the primitive concept "size of an object" is somewhat arbitrary (is a needle bigger than a thimble?). Let's suppose we decide on N different kinds of tests. An individual's score on this battery of tests is an N-vector. Sample from a large population and plot each vector in the N-dimensional space. We might find that the resulting points are concentrated on a submanifold of the N-dimensional space, such that a single variable (which is a special linear combination of the N coordinates) captures most of the variation. As an extreme example, imagine the points form a long thin ellipse with one very long axis; position on this long axis almost completely specifies the N vector. (See these slides for more explanation and some figures.)

    What I've just described geometrically is the case where the N mental abilities display a lot of internal correlation, and have a dominant single factor that arises from factor analysis. This dominant factor is what we call g. Note it did not have to be the case that there was a single dominant factor -- the sampled points could have had any shape -- but for the set of generally agreed upon human cognitive abilities, there is.

    What this implies about underlying brain wetware is an interesting question but would take us too far afield. I will mention that g, defined as above using cognitive tests, correlates with neurophysical quantities like reaction time! So it's at least possible that high g has something to do with generally effective brain function -- being wired up efficiently. It's now acknowledged even by hard line egalitarians that g is at least partly heritable, but for the purposes of this discussion we only require a weaker property -- that adult g is relatively stable.)

    To summarize, g is the best single number compression of the N vector characterizing an individual's cognitive profile. (This is a lossy compression -- knowing g does not allow exact reconstruction of the N vector.) Of course, the choice of the N tests used to deduce g was at least somewhat arbitrary, and a change in tests results in a different definition of g. There is no unique or perfect definition of a general factor of intelligence. As I emphasized above, given the nature of the problem it seems unreasonable to criticize the specific construction of g, or to try to be overly precise about the value of g for a particular individual. The important question is Q2: what good is it?

    A tremendous amount of research has been conducted on Q2. For a nice summary, see Why g matters: the complexity of ordinary life by psychologist Linda Gottfredson, or click on the IQ or psychometrics label link for this blog. Links and book recommendations here. The short answer is that g does indeed correlate with life outcomes. If you want to argue with me about any of this in the comments, please at least first read some of the literature cited above...

    Limitations and open questions:

    1. Are there group differences in g? Yes, this is actually uncontroversial. The hard question is whether these observed differences are due to genetic causes.

    2. Is it useful to consider sub-factors? What about, e.g., a 2 or 3-vector compression instead of a scalar quantity? Yes, that's why the SAT has an M and a V section. Some people are strong verbally, but weak mathematically, and vice versa. Some people are really good at visualizing geometric relationships, some aren't, etc.

    3. Does g become less useful in the tail of the distribution? Quite possibly. It's harder and harder to differentiate people in the tail.

    4. How stable is g? Adult g is pretty stable -- I've seen results with .9 correlation or greater for measurements taken a year apart. However, g measured in childhood is nowhere near a perfect predictor of adult g. If someone has a reference with good data on childhood/adult g correlation, please let me know.

    5. Isn't g just the same as class or SES? No. Although there is a weak correlation between g and SES, there are obviously huge variations in g within any particular SES group. Not all rich kids can master calculus, and not all disadvantaged kids read below grade level.
    also, good discussion in The neuroscience of human intelligence differences Nature Reviews: Neuroscience 11 | 2010 | 201
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    It's called disgenics and yes the UK is experiencing some serious disgenics. Watch the movie idiocracy, it sums up the phenomena in a entertaining light.
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    (Original post by Chi019)
    How hard did you look? Note that Professor Flynn is very left wing politically and his own research has shown rising scores 'The Flynn Effect'. Nonetheless, he acknowledges the trend in NZ, which is similar to other Western countries.
    Except intelligence is different from other human traits, it isn't purely (and so simply) hereditary, and I'm surprised that Flynn acts as though it were.

    What's more, associating education and number of children, education and IQ, and then taking that to an association between number of children and IQ is jumping the gun a bit.

    What's more, you (and Flynn) are assuming the direction between any possible correlation. You are assuming that education dictates number of children, rather than number of children effects education.

    And what's more (despite trying) I've yet to find any direction relationship between IQ and number of children.

    Finally, speaking of the Flynn effect, that would seem to show that the whole concept is contrary to evidence anyway.
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    (Original post by Farm_Ecology)
    Except intelligence is different from other human traits, it isn't purely (and so simply) hereditary, and I'm surprised that Flynn acts as though it were.

    What's more, associating education and number of children, education and IQ, and then taking that to an association between number of children and IQ is jumping the gun a bit.

    What's more, you (and Flynn) are assuming the direction between any possible correlation. You are assuming that education dictates number of children, rather than number of children effects education.

    And what's more (despite trying) I've yet to find any direction relationship between IQ and number of children.

    Finally, speaking of the Flynn effect, that would seem to show that the whole concept is contrary to evidence anyway.
    1. It's a quantitative heritable trait. Steve Hsu, has a nice summary here of the findings from behavioural genetic studies, and more recently molecular genetics. So a significant amount of variation within the population is due to genetic variation in addition to environmental variation. Hsu is involved with the BGI Cognitive Genomics Project - I'd recommend his slides from this presentation to Google about their project looking at the genetic basis of cognitive ability.

    2. There's a pretty robust relationship between cognitive ability and academic outcomes. It's not the only factor, but there is a significant relationship (see Deary 2007).

    3. The thing with the Flynn Effect is that it is only on certain sub-tests - which suggests people are getting better at certain things as a result of environmental changes. But overall ability - or the g factor - doesn't appear to have changed.

    4. There's a reasonable summary of the research on the relationship between intelligence and fertility on wikipedia. A recent paper by Meisenberg summarises:

    Although a negative relationship between fertility and education has been described consistently in most countries of the world, less is known about the relationship between intelligence and reproductive outcomes. Also the paths through which intelligence influences reproductive outcomes are uncertain. The present study uses the NLSY79 to analyze the relationship of intelligence measured in 1980 with the number of children reported in 2004, when the respondents were between 39 and 47 years old. Intelligence is negatively related to the number of children, with partial correlations (age controlled) of −.156, −.069, −.235 and −.028 for White females, White males, Black females and Black males, respectively. This effect is related mainly to the g-factor. It is mediated in part by education and income, and to a lesser extent by the more “liberal” gender attitudes of more intelligent people. In the absence of migration and with constant environment, genetic selection would reduce the average IQ of the US population by about .8 points per generation.
    Intelligence Volume 38, Issue 2, March–April 2010, Pages 220–230

    http://www.sciencedirect.com/science...6028961000005X
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    I think somebody has been watching too much Idiocracy

    http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0387808/
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    (Original post by NotMyToothbrush)
    I think somebody has been watching too much Idiocracy

    http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0387808/
    A scarily prophetic movie Evolutionay theorist Greg Cochran certainly thinks so anyway.

    Modern industrialized societies are failing on all three counts. Every population that can make a decent cuckoo clock has below-replacement fertility. The demographic pattern also selects against intelligence, something like one IQ point a generation. And, even if people at every level of intelligence had the same number of children, so that there was no selection against IQ, we would still be getting more and messed up, because there’s not enough selection going on to counter ongoing mutations.

    It is possible that some country, or countries, will change in a way that avoids civilizational collapse. I doubt if this will happen by voluntary action. Some sort of technological solution might also arise – but it has to be soon.
    http://westhunt.wordpress.com/2013/0...ustainability/
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    I think maybe it's time the education system was altered. We don't want to end up like China and their one child policy..

    Anyway there will always be smart and not so smart people, that's how the world works. This girl in school said that in Pakistan they speak Pakistani.. I know this is a valid source of evidence but really.. She gets A's and B's.. Maybe PSHE needs to have a higher regard in the education system and better teachers who will motivate children in the less fortunate schools in the UK. But to be fair who wants to teach snotty, ungrateful brats anyway. The children of today need to understand how we have gotten this far and that they are the future of the world.
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    Isn't this what immigration is for? Promise foreigners a better standard of life in the UK, then steal all of their doctors, lawyers and accountants to work for us.
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    (Original post by Farm_Ecology)
    No because intelligence doesn't work like that.



    The direct link between IQ and class isn't that strong. There is a good link between occupation and IQ, and occupation and class, however.

    Also, I've yet to find anything which supports this supposed "stupid people have more children".

    It's common knowledge the underclass have loads of kids, they say it themselves so that they can get more benefits.

    You look around on council estates, they've got loads of kids you see it for yourself, you don't need a published science paper to tell you this, it's everywhere
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    Yeah like firescirroco said it's this

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dysgenics
 
 
 
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