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Physicist, Startup Founder, Blogger, Dad

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

The Myth of American Meritocracy

Ron Unz has performed an exhaustive analysis of elite university admissions in The Myth of American Meritocracy (December issue of the American Conservative). He finds strong evidence for de facto quotas on Asian-Americans at Ivy League universities. See below for a brief summary. I suggest reading his entire article, which is filled with additional insights, including one rather shocking surprise. Don't miss the statistical supplement.

Asian-American Quotas at Ivy League Universities?

November 28, 2012 - America’s elite Ivy League universities appear to follow a de facto Asian-American admissions quota policy according to “The Myth of American Meritocracy,”a 30,000-word cover story in the December issue of The American Conservative by publisher Ron Unz.

Unz provides detailed statistical evidence that the pattern of Asian-American enrollment over the last two decades is remarkably similar to what followed the establishment of Ivy League Jewish quotas in the mid-1920s. Soon after the U.S. Department of Justice closed its early 1990s investigation into allegations of anti-Asian admissions bias at the Ivy League:
  • Asian-American numbers at Harvard, Yale, and Columbia began large declines. 
  • Asian-American enrollments throughout the Ivy League strangely converged to very similar levels. 
  • The college-age population of Asian-Americans doubled during 1993-2011 as did their top academic awards, but none of this was reflected in their Ivy League enrollments. 
  • As one example, the percentage of college-age Asian-Americans at Harvard dropped by more than 50% during 1993-2011, a larger decline than that suffered by Jews following the 1925 establishment of ethnic quotas. 
  • Meanwhile, race-neutral Caltech saw its Asian-American enrollment increase closely in line with the growth of the college-age Asian-American population. 
  • Comparing the Ivy League enrollments of Asian-Americans with those of high-performing white subpopulations rules out general “diversity” factors as an explanation for these patterns.


See also Defining Merit. Guess which university produces the most Nobel prizes per student?


Some additional figures from the article (click for larger versions). Note that not only did the number of college age Asian-Americans increase in recent decades, so did (overwhelmingly) their performance at the high end of academic achievement. If admissions were race neutral (meritocratic) at Harvard, why did the percentage of Asians decrease?

The Caltech student population is demographically similar to the most intellectually talented portion of the US population (see below); the Ivy League student population is not -- there are curious distortions.





63 comments:

twoL said...

Is there any data on the amount and type of extracurriculars Asian college applications contain? The Ivy League values the "soft" factors more than Caltech which values GPA and SAT scores more than athletic achievement for instance. What I wonder is whether Ivy League admissions offices are consciously rejecting Asian applicants because they don't want their campus to be "too Asian," or whether they are justifying the rejection on some other ground, such as lower Asian involvement in the social extracurrics that the elite schools seem to like.

RobinHanson said...

Yup, seems damning.

gs said...

And yet Obama---from the party of affirmative action, a possible beneficiary of affirmative action, who will presumably appoint judges who support affirmative action---carried the Asian-American vote handily, by 3:1.


I don't understand this, but I suspect the explanation is multifaceted.

esmith said...

Can't comment about the article, but the chart, and particularly the right scale, are misleading.

* In 4 out of 8 Ivies, Asian share of enrollment has increased more than 50% since 1990.
* Why are we looking at _absolute_ numbers of Asians vs. _relative_ shares of enrollment? Total college age population of the United States grew 13% from 1990 to 2011.
* It is natural for Caltech to have a higher Asian share of enrollment, compared to Ivies. Asians are overrepresented in STEM fields, and Caltech specializes in STEM. Furthermore, Caltech is located in California. California has the second highest Asian share of population in the country (after Hawaii) at triple the national average.

Compare Caltech to MIT. They have similar profiles, Caltech is 40% Asian, MIT is only 25% Asian. The share of Asians in Caltech has boosted by a factor of 1.6 by geographical factors. Then compare Caltech (STEM specialization, 40% Asian) to Stanford (unspecialized, 20% to 25% Asian). On the basis of these numbers, 15-18% Asian share in the Ivies appears reasonable.

ben_g said...

I'm kind of new to this debate.. Is the theory that admissions people are looking at the race on the applicant or that there is a disparate impact of policies maximizing for things other than pure intellectual ability?

Carson Chow said...

What about MIT?

steve hsu said...

MIT has been aping the Ivies for almost two decades now. It began with a famous comment by their President to the effect that too many MIT grads work fro Harvard grads. Their admissions policies have deviated from a pure academic meritocracy. It's not just geographical factors here at work. Also, as you may know, Asian Americans are very ambitious and tend to apply nationally, not just locally, to university. You can look at accept rates at places like Harvard or MIT and they show the disparities that Ron discusses. I suggest reading his article before making further comments.

David Coughlin said...

There is a global action that aligns kids to transit the Ivies and exit to high-paying jobs. That alignment has to sustain the university structure. That is, they have to have kids in all the majors. How many East Asian kids are willing to execute the major-in-forestry-get-industry-analyst-job-at-I-Bank gambit? [I feel like you've answered this already somewhere, but I don't know how to search the back comments].

disqus_NzWz1JhDBM said...

What explains the over representation of jews in the ivy league?

Bobdisqus said...

The thing that jumps out to me is the drop off in the Ashkenazim in math at the top end. Anyone care to hazard a guess as to why? Their continued success in admissions would seem to argue it is not from a drop off in ability, but rather that they see less value relative to the diligence needed. What impact has the overcompensation in the financial sector and C-Suite had on this.

Hamish Johnston said...

Jews account for less than 2% of the US population so that historical data suggests to me that this group has undergone some sort of intellectual assimilation over the past 60 or so years. Is there any indication that Asians are about to do the same? And what ethnic group will be the next superstars?

gs said...

"MIT has been aping the Ivies for almost two decades now. It began with a
famous comment by their President to the effect that too many MIT grads
work for Harvard grads. MIT admissions policies have deviated from a
pure academic meritocracy."


In an MIT humanities class the instructor, a senior professor, told us, "You think you'll graduate and run the country. In fact you'll work for somebody who went to Harvard Law School."


This was in the late 1960s. Apparently the attitude Steve describes has been around the Institute for a long time.

5371 said...

Was there any reason to think a Romney presidency would have reduced the Jewish influence on Ivy League admissions? I would suggest not.

dwbudd said...

A handful of observations.

First, can there be any serious argument that our elite universities are applying differing standards when considering the applications of Asian, black, white, and Hispanic students? The data are not absolutely dispositive, as there is a non-zero probability that it's just coincidence or sampling variation that leads to these outcomes, but I would argue that that likelihood is, at the least, numerically very, very small. If someone wants to argue that four students - one from each group - will have the same likelihood for admission to, say, Harvard, with similar transcripts, I'd be open to hearing evidence that that is true.

Second, presuming that (one) is true - that, indeed, differing standards are being applied - the next question is, is this "fair?" Is it "best" for the school? For the country? Sorry for the stereotypical construct, but is an Asian applicant to Harvard who has an 800 on the math SAT, but perhaps has somewhat less achievement in the critical reading or writing portions more deserving of admission than a black student with better scores on reading/writing but poorer performance on mathematics? How does one define "deserving," for that matter? How does Harvard decide what is the best mix of students?

I'm a mathematician, and thus am biased towards the use of standardised tests (like the SAT, but more strongly on the package of other achievement/subject tests), but am not dogmatic about their use.

Third, what is the role of a university like Harvard? Is it different from UC Berkeley, which is funded by California taxpayers? How about Cal Tech? What is the mission? Each exists for a set of reasons, one of which is to provide education and opportunities to individual students. It's my opinion that not amongst those responsibilities is any sort of duty to groups of people (e.g., black, white, or Asians as a group). I reject fundamentally the principle that 'groups' have 'rights.'

Fourth, I would offer that Professor Hsu's definition of 'intellectually talented individuals' is itself somewhat biased towards the outcome he favours - the internal correlation amongst his criteria: Putnam winners, Math Olympiad Winners, Science Talent Search, etc. - seems likely to me to be basically measuring the same thing. If one wishes to define "intellectual talent" as ability in math/physics, then one almost surely will come to the conclusions that Dr Hsu does.

I'm unconvinced that intellectual talent is so unidimensional.

Finally, it remains stunning to me that Asian Americans not only remain solidly Democrats, but indeed seem to be drifting even more strongly into that camp. Not that Mitt Romney is necessarily a great alternative, but I'd be curious why Asian American voters would choose candidates who, at least to me, seem pretty hostile to virtually all of their personal interests.

ohmyohmy said...

Two comments:

In my high school, there were roughly 15 of us who had been advanced two years ahead in math. Of those, 10 were Jewish; only two of them had a 'Jewish' last name. In my graduate school class, half (7) are Jewish. None has a 'Jewish' last name. So I'm pretty dubious of the counting method that you use.

Also, it's clear that there are Asian quotas at these schools, but it's not clear that Intel Science Fairs, etc, are the best way to estimate what level of talent Asians have relative to other groups (it focuses on science/logic). I was curious so I googled High School Poetry Competition, High School Constitution Competition, High School Debating Competition. None of the winners here seem to have an especially high Asian quotient. So maybe a non-technical (liberal arts) university would settle on ~25-30% instead of ~40% asian? And perhaps a (small) part of the problem is a preponderance of Asian applicants excelling in technical fields, leading to competition against each other rather than the general population? Just wonderin'...I'm sure someone here has better stats

ohmyohmy said...

(also what is the point of the Caltech nobel prizes/student comment? is there any reason at all to think that quality of undergrads has any effect on nobel prizes won?)

steve hsu said...

NMS Semifinalist is just based on PSAT/SAT and GPA and is not a particularly high filter. Just look at those numbers.

steve hsu said...

NMS Semifinalist is just based on PSAT/SAT and GPA and is not a particularly high filter. Just look at those numbers.

Don't know how well Ron did with his AJ counting.

dwbudd said...

I was an NMS Semifinalist nearly 30 years ago. The criteria may have changed, but at the time, started and ended with performance on the PSAT.

Making the cut to finalist included SAT and GPA info. The data in Unz's tables are for SEMIFINALISTS, so unless my understanding is out of date (and a quick, non-systematic Google search does not lead me to believe that it is), rely on PSAT.


One can argue that PSAT is strongly correlated with 'g' (a construct that, as someone who understands factor analysis, I am sceptical of), and thus is a good proxy for intellectual talent (a proposition I am amicable to), but that does not really answer my issue about what "merit" really is.

David Coughlin said...

When I took it, NMS semifinalists were the top half percent scorewise, where the score was 2*math + verbal on the PSAT, where you were ranked against the rest of the students in your state. You write an essay where you discuss your other qualifications [GPA, extracurricular accomplishments] up, for Finalist consideration.

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Moshan said...

The Asian student body is problematic for several reasons. First, there is good reason to think that there is de facto quotas on Asians in Ivy League universities - but your Asian nationalism makes your vision too narrow. The quotas are there for everyone. They want a 'balanced' campus that reflects the nation. I disagree with the position, but you're making this sound like somekind of anti-Asian crusade.

Second, California may have officially have ended affirmative action, but Espenshade and others have done a lot of snooping and they basically concluded that it continued unabated but under the radar.



Third, Asians are also recipients of affirmative action. Believe it or not, Asians are not just physics professors even if this is your fantasy. There are a lot of poor Asians, illegal immigrants who live lives that are not very easy to live. There is a sizeable population of Koreans who are illegal immigrants, for example, but we rarely see them in the media(it's all about Latinos). You have filipinos, hmongs, vietnamese and many others who do benefit from Affirmative Action.


Fourth, the biggest victims of affirmative action are actually working-class whites with what Espenshade call 'culturally conservative markers' like membership in the ROTC. Of course, since you only care about Asians, I suppose you don't really care for facts that override your nationalist emotions. But the facts are facts.

Moshan said...

Indian-Americans have the highest SAT scores.
But Jews are very active in politics, culture etc. Acing all the tests will get you places, but life isn't a test you can prep for. Ultimately you need to have a drive to change things.
Make things your way, despite conflict and hassle. Prepping for a test is essentially following instructions and trying to ace those instructions on test day.
Influencing a culture doesn't have a prep or a test. It's something you need to do organically, on your own.



If you look at Asian interests in politics, media or culture I can't say it's a specifically big impact. Still, my guess is that Indian-Americans might be the most opinionated of all Asians, and not just in the knee-jerk defensive manner you often see(like on this amusing blog). You often see them engage in cultural matters. Is it a co-incidence that they are the most advanced Asian group politically?


Jewish culture is my home base. It's placing education on a high premium but it is also very engaging with the world. Look at Jewish economists, most of them love to be opinated. Two Jews, three opinions etc.
Asian economists? Empirically, from what I've seen their work is very solid. But again, a lack of political and socio-cultural interest.



Influence isn't just test scores. It's also an engaging culture. And walk on any college campus and most Asians are very self-selecting, only hang in Asian groups.

It becomes a self-feeding culture, an insular culture. It's a great support system for the inner group but it won't yield much influence with other people as they're mostly strangers to you.

Guy_Brodude said...

This confirms a lot of my long-held suspicions.

Regarding Jewish over-representation, I don't think this reflects an actual bias for Jews ("He has a Jewish name, let's admit him") but more a bias for the kind of cultural capital possessed disproportionately by Jews. Remember that Espenshade found that working-class whites were disadvantaged relative to most groups and that activities like JROTC and 4-H had a strong negative correlation with odds of admissions. That seems pretty consistent with Unz's analysis.

dwbudd said...

Mohan, the problem is, the "quotas" apparently are NOT there "for everyone." At least if you look at the data. It seems that, using the metrics Unz proposes, Jewish people are admitted to our top universities at rates that far exceed what one would expect based upon the data.

Guy_Brodude said...

And I can't help but wonder: does Unz read this blog?

Guy_Brodude said...

"In my high school, there were roughly 15 of us who had been advanced two years ahead in math. Of those, 10 were Jewish; only two of them had a 'Jewish' last name. In my graduate school class, half (7) are Jewish. None has a 'Jewish' last name. So I'm pretty dubious of the counting method that is used."


Would this impact his analysis though? By that I mean that if a certain proportion of Jews are being counted as non-Jews amongst IMO competitors, wouldn't the same proportion be counted as non-Jews at Harvard and Yale?

tractal said...

Not necessarily, because the Jewish organizations cited for admissions numbers are likely to use polling or self-identification metrics. IE Ron's name counting method could have severely under-rated the true Jewish NMS to Ivy League ratio. Would have to look carefully to know, but ohmyohmy's point is a good one.

Guy_Brodude said...

Does anybody have any data on how Hillel and other organizations assess Jewish enrollment? Unz's methodology seems fairly sophisticated (he was using established frequencies of name-ethnicity combinations, at least for Asian families).

steve hsu said...

I'm referring to prizes *won* by former students (alumni). Click the link and read.

Richard Seiter said...

One thing that surprised me is that the analysis of the percentage of top SAT scorers admitted to the Ivies did not include a discussion of the 1995 SAT recentering (or did I miss it, I skimmed the entire article and searched for "recenter"). That change is a significant confounding factor in trying to compare the admissions outcomes for perfect SAT scores given that it significantly decreased the high end resolution of the test (and probably increased the percentage of perfect scores).

Richard Seiter said...

It's hard to know what is truly in peoples hearts and minds, but I will note that it is probably possible to pick evaluation criteria that would change the racial balance and then claim only to be concerned about non-racial objective criteria.

stevesailer said...

"What impact has the overcompensation in the financial sector and C-Suite had on this?"



My top of the head guess is: A lot.

5371 said...

He comments on it quite frequently, as far as I know.

tractal said...

Most of Mr. Unz's analysis points to the later. The strongest evidence is the fact that Asian admissions percentages have stayed almost flat for the last 2 decades, despite a 50% or so increase in Asian college age population over the same period. Maybe even more damning, Asian representation crashed almost immediately after the federal investigation concluded.

stevesailer said...

Anybody ever seen hard data on which kind of alumni donate the most money? I've been told that universities study this intensely, but they sure keep it secret. I've been told that the top donors tend to be something like smart male legacy jocks.


What about ethnic differences in generosity?

HedgpethB said...

Unz found ‘no evidence of racial bias against Asians’ in favor of whites in general. :

“When examining statistical evidence, the proper aggregation of data
is critical. Consider the ratio of the recent 2007–2011 enrollment of
Asian students at Harvard relative to their estimated share of America’s
recent NMS semifinalists, a reasonable proxy for the high-ability
college-age population, and compare this result to the corresponding
figure for whites. The Asian ratio is 63 percent, slightly above the
white ratio of 61 percent, with both these figures being considerably
below parity due to the substantial presence of under-represented racial
minorities such as blacks and Hispanics, foreign students, and students
of unreported race. ** Thus, there appears to be no evidence for racial
bias against Asians, even excluding the race-neutral impact of athletic
recruitment, legacy admissions, and geographical diversity.**

Robert Sykes said...

Actually, it does. The over-representation of Jews at Ivy League schools is so extreme that it can only come about by actual bias in favor of Jews. Nowadays, there are as many Jews on Ivy League campuses as non-Jewish Whites. And many of them have academic credentials inferior to the Asians and Whites they have displaced.

Yan Shen said...

Maybe we should look at the majors that Asian American applicants to elite universities are declaring when they apply. I'm guessing they're disproportionately in quantitative subjects like math, computer science, engineering, etc. A school like Harvard is probably different from a school like Cal-Tech, in that the former is looking for students across a more balanced set of majors, rather than just STEM.


So probably it makes sense that admissions at Cal-Tech mirrors statistics such as the math and physics Olympiads more closely than does admissions for the Ivy League. I wonder if any of these studies account for the probability of an applicant being admitted given their test scores, race, and major.

Amanda said...

Russell K. Nieli on study by Thomas Espenshade and Alexandria Radford (mentioned by Unz):

“When lower-class whites are matched with lower-class blacks and other non-whites the degree of the non-white advantage becomes astronomical: lower-class Asian applicants are seven times as likely to be accepted to the competitive private institutions as similarly qualified whites, lower-class Hispanic applicants eight times as likely, and lower-class blacks ten times as likely. These are enormous differences and reflect the fact that lower-class whites were rarely accepted to the private institutions Espenshade and Radford surveyed. Their diversity-enhancement value was obviously rated very low.”

gide07 said...

What is particularly high. Is it 2.5 or 3 SDs? If so then, assuming all but the mean is the same, American Jews have a mean IQ only .35 to .5 SDs above the white gentile mean. This means that American Jews are outperforming what would be expected based on IQ alone. This is obviously true of Russian oligarchs. Then what is this extra which Jews have?

Obviousy g for the population as a whole and for American Jews isn't the same. All of their advantage is the verbal factor. There is no M factor, and at a very high level I expect mathematical ability is more correlated with V than visuo-spatial, etc.

gide07 said...

The decline in the Jewish % in the contests listed to 0% and the rise in the Asian % imply at least one of the following, none of which is acceptable to the bolg's author as far as I can tell:

1. Parents make a difference.
2. These contest participants are specialists and aren't very smart. They are like Feynman (IQ = 125).
3. Jews are actully dumber than they used to be.
I choose 2 as the answer.

gide07 said...

It is believed by admissions people that all whites with incomes less than x are obese, tattooed, goateed, retards (who vote Republican and hate black people).

gide07 said...

Simply count the number of Cohens, etc. (unambiguously Jewish names) answer what % of Jews have these names and extrapolate.
The state where Cohen is least common is N Dakota. Isn't it a good bet it has the smallest % of Jews? It does have the smallest % of lawyers.

dwbudd said...

Yan, I think your response with respect to the Harvard-Cal Tech question falls within the boundaries "reasonable." I would suggest that Cal Tech exists for one purpose, and Harvard for another. Hence, yes; one would expect the admissions criteria to be different for one versus the other. THIS is the question I had posed, fundamentally, and one that Professor Hsu essentially ignored, focusing on one of the tactical issues (i.e., measuring "merit") rather than what it is we want to measure, and why. With respect, I think my question is "when discussing 'size', what is it we want to measure - height, weight, BMI?" whereas Professor Hsu focused his answer on "use SI units."

It's a fine, workable answer, but not to the basic question.

I agree you "could" make the argument that society would be better off with a higher focus on STEM; I would however, suggest that "value creation" is a somewhat subjective endpoint. I've seen that thread here, and how one defines "value" likely begs into existence the question itself. I recall that that thread actually lead to an argument about whether "Twitter" has intrinsic value...

Yan Shen said...

Your reference to the previous discussion about Twitter reminds me of something I read a while back about Facebook hurting workplace productivity... :)

http://www.computerworld.com/s/article/9135795/Study_Facebook_use_cuts_productivity_at_work

"Study: Facebook use cuts productivity at work
Survey finds 77% of Facebookers use the social networking site while on the job"

Emil Ole William Kirkegaard said...

Feynmann wasn't 125. That myth has got to die.

jvcguest said...

"It's my opinion that not amongst those responsibilities is any sort of duty to groups of people (e.g., black, white, or Asians as a group). I reject fundamentally the principle that 'groups' have 'rights.' "

Just exercising my contrarian tendencies (and I'm not Jewish) I wonder if you would agree that everyone has a right to be treated as if they were not a member of any particular group? Correspondingly that everyone has a duty to treat people as individuals without regard to their group membership? Perhaps no trouble with that. But what if a whole lot of people are being denied that right and that denial is associated with their membership of particular groups? Having got so far haven't you a duty to do something to counter the effect of the discrimination you detect and object to? Are there no generalisations which might then be relied on if only for practical convenience in order to give effect to one's ameliorative purposes?

H.L. Mencken II said...

as someone who understands autism i am skeptical of dwbudd

biaknabato said...

Ultimately what Harvard would decide as an attractive student is an applicant that will likely ensure the financial and economic survival of Harvard and his grades be damned whether the school,the parent or the student knows it or not.

biaknabato said...

And Berkeley and UCLA and other public schools have different missions than Harvard ? I see no difference , all 3 schools produce undergrads who end up with doctorates in all fields.

biaknabato said...

Well Asians might have other concerns like immigration of family members, health care for elderly parents , the perceived bias in favor of Christians by the Republicans etc Asians would have voted strongly against Obama because of his support for race preferences however they are looking for a whole mix of factors

biaknabato said...

And public universities are not dedicated to the STEM fields only........... how come in any state where Asians comes close to parity with the Jewish population of that state , there are more Asians than Jews in the flagship public university of that state, so why are the Ivies different ? And NYC is no different from California , in the freshman classes of Baruch College, CCNY there are actually more Asians than whites for the past several years , even at Hunter College whites barely edge out Asians in numbers in the freshman classes. This is completely the opposite in any private schools in NYC be it NYU,Fordham or Columbia etc. Well I guess a private school with a 68 % in NYC admission rate will still have a far larger number of whites in the freshman class than Asians. Another way of saying this is that there are more Asians in the freshman classes of CCNY, Hunter, Baruch , STony Brook and Rutgers than Jews.

biaknabato said...

Or because even if Indians have dark skins at least many of them, their body physiogonomy is similar to people coming from Western Europe or the Middle East compared to East Asians , something which whites or Jews might find more applealing ? Despite your views Asians have been elected politicians even in places where they are not the largest racial group.In the media there is racial bias against males , I guess Asian females as anchors serves up the fantasies of white males and ethnic and racial communities have their own very active media. Asian representation in the mainstream media has more to do with racial factors than with your concept of insularity.

biaknabato said...

Isn't the Wall Street sector also self -selecting with regards to their racial choices at least on the management level? Actually a female Asian ex Wall Streeter published a book about it, can't get her name off my head right now........ Overcompensated sounds like Overrepresented..

Ellie K said...

Cohen is NOT an unambiguously Jewish name. The U.S. Secretary of Defense during a prior administration was named "Richard Cohen". He was NOT a "crypto-Jew", as I suspect would be the response. He did not look Jewish, not at all.


I realize that was a bad thing to say. I am allowed, as I am a middle-aged Jewish widow. In fact, that particular Secretary of Defense was uncommonly handsome, in comparison to his predecessors and despite being a WASP. I think many Jewish and Asian men are good-looking too. Perhaps my judgement is clouded because they tend to be good husbands. Good providers, intelligent, hard working, devoted to children and respectful toward elders ... with, even without, extensive or prestigious education ;o)

Ellie K said...

Yes, my experience was the same. I won an NMS, the sort that isn't sponsored by corporations. There were only two of us, in the entire state who were National Merit Scholarship winners. Our state was New Mexico. I am Jewish. Eileen was not. In fact, Eileen's parents immigrated from West Germany to the U.S.A. in the 1950's. Father was a physicist, mother was a chemist. Eileen's older brother also won an (a?) NMS. This was a few years back, though.

Ellie K said...

No. That is the same as the comments in Tyler Cowen's "Marginal Revolution", that Steve Sailor said. Steve Sailor (Sailer?) says that Jews have "distinctly mediocre" mathematical abilities, and below normal "visio-spatial abilities". Steve Sailor also has a website that includes links to buying mail-order Asian brides, and he is an enthusiastic member of DARE, which is some sort of advocacy group for oppressed, discriminated-against non-Jewish white men.

Far more pertinent yet though, so you'll know I am not resorting to the ad hominem and irrelevant: Steve Sailor was Unz's primary data source for the National Merit Scholarship information, as well as the data about what names were Jewish and what were not. Unz specifically cites Steve Sailor as his data source in the American Conservative article. When I pointed this out on Marginal Revolution, I was told "Lady, you sound unhinged".

Your conclusions, gide07, that "all of Jewish advantage is in the verbal factor" makes me wonder this: Would some posit next, that we (I am Jewish ;o) deceive people into thinking we are good at math, finance, medicine, other things? That we scheme, thus control major broadcast media, talk in circles, and thus use this nefarious verbal fluency to achieve our self-serving goals? Might this be extended a little further, into an action item, call it public policy, as a form of government remediation, for such an apparent imbalance...

Sorry, returning to topic: I noticed that Steve Sailor is a respected contributor of gratuitous anti-black people commentary on the blog of respected (by me) Columbia University Professor of Statistics Andrew Gelman (I had very strongly POSITIVE confirmation bias in Gelman's favor). For example, Steve Sailor manages to make irrelevant and mean-spirited comments about the Reverend Al Sharpton on Gelman's blog. "Irrelevant", because the blog is definitely statistically themed.

In sum, this makes me question the findings of Unz's study. I did read some of his other work. Unz seems sincere and thoughtful. Maybe he was misguided in this particular effort.

P.S. You people need to stop being so obnoxious toward @twitter-17991785:disqus I am not directing that toward you, gide07, or our host Steve Hsu, but rather the idiot who made the lame autistic snark and a few others. I loathe all the Assberger's crud. There is autism, and it is tragic. There are unhappy or poorly-adjusted bright people, but that doesn't mean that they have a mental pathological condition.

Ellie K said...

No! That is ridiculous. "Body physiognomy"? (You added an extra "o". Spelling error snark ;o) You're saying that Indian people prosper because they physically resemble white and/ or Jewish people of "Western European or Middle Eastern" descent, thus white and/ or Jewish people like them better, and encourage Indians to thrive, whereas they discourage East Asians.


First: Most Jewish and white men have been enamored of Asian women for the past half century if not longer. They find them physically attractive, and they marry them too.
Second: You are getting into the realm of the ridiculous over-generalization. Indians have a wide variety of skin colors. You said "Indians have dark skins". Urg... The same i.e. over-generalization, is applicable to your observation about Indian "body physiognomy".

biaknabato said...

Just read it today , i was referring more to the Dravidians of the South of India rather than people of the North like Punjab and Uttar Pradesh , people from the South of India are more likely to have darker skin tones than people from the North like that of Punjab and Uttar Pradesh. I am not going to discuss here the human trek from Africa down to the Indian subcontinent on to Australia. the facial features of Indians specially from the Northern part of India resembles more of the people of the Middle East and Europe than the people of East Asia and that is what may appeal to whites in job promotion unconsciously perhaps. Surely it has nothing to do with education since the children of East Asian immigrants are as well educated as the children of immigrants from the Indian subcontinent.

biaknabato said...

There is nothing wrong to do with having a dark skin , it is just an evolutionary manifestation just like blond hair and blue eyes.

biaknabato said...

As for this Asian woman fetish or thing , there are plenty of forums discussing it. go read the commentaries in those forums .

Raymond Kim said...

That was very insightful and something that most Asian Americans are aware of, but didn't have the evidence to back it up. A lot of hedge fund managers are lately being recruited out of ivy leagues, and their performance has been subpar. There is a disconnect now between Ivy League and IQ level. It would be better to directly use SAT score to asset IQ, instead of Ivy League education at this point if you were in an occupation where IQ was important.

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