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Comment author: V_V 18 March 2016 04:27:29PM *  1 point [-]

Obviously racial effects go under this category as well. It covers anything visible. So a high heritability is compatible with genetics being a cause of competence, and/or prejudice against visible genetic characteristics being important ("Our results indicate that we either live in a meritocracy or a hive of prejudice!").

This can be tested by estimating how much IQ screens off race/gender as a success predictor, assuming that IQ tests are not prejudiced and things like the stereotype threat don't exist or are negligible.

But is it possible that IQ itself is in part a positional good? Consider that success doesn't just depend on competence, but on social skills, ability to present yourself well in an interview, and how managers and peers judge you. If IQ affects or covaries with one or another of those skills, then we would be overemphasising the importance of IQ in competence. Thus attempts to genetically boost IQ could give less impact than expected. The person whose genome was changed would benefit, but at the (partial) expense of everyone else.

National average IQ is strongly correlated with national wealth and development indexes, which I think refutes the hypothesis that IQ mainly affects success as a positional quality, or a proxy of thereof, at least at the level of personal interactions.

Comment author: Torchlight_Crimson 19 March 2016 01:04:52AM 0 points [-]

This can be tested by estimating how much IQ screens off race/gender as a success predictor, assuming that IQ tests are not prejudiced and things like the stereotype threat don't exist or are negligible.

And assuming IQ captures everything relevant about the difference.

Comment author: Lumifer 18 March 2016 03:01:59PM -1 points [-]

If those risk management systems are themselves software, that doesn't really change the overall picture.

It does because the issue is complexity and opaqueness. A simple gatekeeper filter along the lines of

 if (trade.size > gazillion) { reject(trade) }

is not an "AI system".

Comment author: Torchlight_Crimson 19 March 2016 12:52:48AM 1 point [-]

In which case the AI splits the transaction into 2 transactions, each just below a gazillion.

Comment author: Torchlight_Crimson 18 March 2016 10:58:40PM 0 points [-]

But I am confused about what this means in practice, due to arguments like "contacts are very important for business success, rich people get much more contacts than poor people, yet business success is strongly correlated with genetic parent wealth" and such.

Keep in mind that people's genes tend to correlate with their parents' genes. So even if success in wealth is determined by genetics, we would still expect wealth to correlate with your parents' wealth.

Comment author: Stuart_Armstrong 18 March 2016 10:00:52PM 1 point [-]

This can be tested by estimating how much IQ screens off race/gender as a success predictor

Got any good references on that? Googleing these kind of terms doesn't lead to good links.

National average IQ is strongly correlated with national wealth and development indexes

I know, but the way it does so is bizarre (IQ seems to have a much stronger effect between countries than between individuals). Then I add the fact that IQ is very heritable, and also pretty malleable (flynn effect), and I'm still confused.

Now, I'm not going to throw out all I previously believed on heredity and IQ and so on, but the picture just got a lot more complicated. Or "nuanced", if I wanted to use a positive term. Let's go with nuanced.

Comment author: Torchlight_Crimson 18 March 2016 10:44:45PM *  1 point [-]

I know, but the way it does so is bizarre (IQ seems to have a much stronger effect between countries than between individuals).

Why is this bizarre? It simply means that high IQ individuals don't capture all the value they create.

Edit: another possibility is that smart people tend to move to places that were doing well. I believe there was a thread in the comments to SSC a while back where it was discovered that the average IQ of American States correlated with a rather naively constructed measure of "favorable geography", e.g., points for being on the coast and for having navigable rivers.

Comment author: gjm 17 March 2016 01:11:59PM 0 points [-]

"supports the parts of the Nazi platform only Nazis support"

Not quite. For instance, Soviet-style communism was pretty big on totalitarianism, which is certainly a distinctively Nazi trait, but Nazism and Soviet communism were very different things.

circular, hence useless

Nope. E.g., if some new political movement comes out for Jew-killing, totalitarian control, military expansionism, moral traditionalism, and fostering the Master Race, I'll be very happy saying that yup, they're basically Nazis even if they don't use that term.

(That's not meant to be a necessary-and-sufficient condition; just an example.)

"supports the parts of the definition gjm doesn't approve of"

This seems to be your default assumption, to which you fall back as soon as you think you've ruled out any single alternative. It's still wrong, just as it was before.

For instance: the NSDAP programme includes the abolition of unearned income -- interest, rent, etc. I think that's a terrible idea, but finding that an organization advocates the same idea wouldn't much dispose me to call it "Nazi".

(Perhaps it should -- it's a rather unusual idea as well as probably a bad one. So maybe I could be persuaded. But the fact that I'd need persuading indicates that I am not using the word the way you say I am.)

I don't see the difference [...] "we" are presumably going to have them [...] do it from our perspective.

That word "presumably" would be one key difference. Another would be that teaching from a particular perspective is (possibly bad but) not the same thing as brainwashing.

Comment author: Torchlight_Crimson 18 March 2016 01:09:48AM 2 points [-]

but Nazism and Soviet communism were very different things.

In what way?

Nope. E.g., if some new political movement comes out for Jew-killing, totalitarian control, military expansionism, moral traditionalism, and fostering the Master Race, I'll be very happy saying that yup, they're basically Nazis even if they don't use that term.

Ok, if a movement endorses their entire platform, it's safe to call them Nazis. Except that isn't the case for Golden Dawn, which was the movement under discussion.

Another would be that teaching from a particular perspective is (possibly bad but) not the same thing as brainwashing.

And the difference is?

Comment author: Jiro 16 March 2016 10:07:43PM -1 points [-]

Your definition of "Nazi" currently amounts to "supports the parts of the Nazi platform only Nazis support". Now obviously stated this way, it is clearly a circular, hense useless, definition.

That doesn't follow. You can do the comparison of obvious Nazis and obvious non-Nazis to see what the Nazis support, then use the information from that to assess whether the non-obvious cases are nazis.

Comment author: Torchlight_Crimson 17 March 2016 12:02:40AM 2 points [-]

Except then you'd have to use some other criterion to determine the "obvious" cases.

Comment author: Glen 16 March 2016 02:30:25PM 3 points [-]

The closest thing to rationality content I can pull from this is "just because a thing looks good, doesn't mean it is good". However, the source page lists a grand total of one corrupt non-profit. You can find one bad version of anything, no matter how good or bad the whole group is. You could probably even find a hundred such examples, just from population size and base rate alone. Vox doesn't attempt to check if he is right, he doesn't even list a few examples. He just lists a single instance of a probably corrupt non-profit and, pleased with his own cynicism and insight, declares he they has found a pattern. This is a good example of what not to do, and an important failure mode to watch out for, but you are presenting it as though it were rational rather than a cautionary tale.

Comment author: Torchlight_Crimson 16 March 2016 09:02:18PM 3 points [-]

Think of it as an exercise in looking at the incentives people in various situations have. You may want to start by examening the sentence:

At least the corporations have to deliver to their customers on some level, or they go out of business.

Comment author: gjm 16 March 2016 10:35:34AM -1 points [-]

you mean "the parts that gjm doesn't approve of"

You keep doing this. You keep being wrong. You should stop it.

Speak for yourself. I very much don't approve of [...]

I fear you misunderstand me (and someone else seems to have misunderstood the same way, so presumably I should have been clearer). I meant not "everyone agrees with this" but "many people with a wide variety of political positions agree with this". And I didn't intend to imply that everyone in their programme other than "kill the Jews" is in that category.

"The state is to be responsible for a fundamental reconstruction of our whole national education program" could, in isolation, mean anything from "we're going to build a lot of new schools and fund a lot of new teachers" to "we're going to close down the education system entirely" via "we're going to turn the schools into brainwashing units" and "we're going to change the schools from brainwashing units to places of actual education". In the Nazis' case, it turned out to be the brainwashing one, and no reasonable person would support that. And, lo, I think "brainwash all the children to agree with the State's position" would generally be regarded as a characteristically Nazi policy, though of course totalitarians of all stripes do that -- and this is consistent with both Lumifer's analysis (something qualifies to be thought of as characteristically Nazi iff the Nazis did it and it was really bad) and mine (something qualifies to be thought of as characteristically Nazi iff the Nazis did it and most others didn't).

Actually I think both Lumifer's analysis and mine are right; something is easier to pigeonhole as Nazi if (1) you see it done often by people who aren't Nazis and (2) you feel positively about it. I'll add another: once Nazism is associated in everyone's mind mostly with nationalism, Jew-killing, and war-making, any given other thing is going to be easier to think of as "Nazi" if it feels like it resembles those.

Comment author: Torchlight_Crimson 16 March 2016 08:56:21PM 3 points [-]

I meant not "everyone agrees with this" but "many people with a wide variety of political positions agree with this". And I didn't intend to imply that everyone [sic] in their programme other than "kill the Jews" is in that category.

What do you mean by a "wide variety of political positions"? Your definition of "Nazi" currently amounts to "supports the parts of the Nazi platform only Nazis support". Now obviously stated this way, it is clearly a circular, hense useless, definition. So we are left with how you use it in practice, which brings us back to "supports the parts of the definition gjm doesn't approve of".

"The state is to be responsible for a fundamental reconstruction of our whole national education program" could, in isolation, mean anything from "we're going to build a lot of new schools and fund a lot of new teachers" to "we're going to close down the education system entirely" via "we're going to turn the schools into brainwashing units"

I don't see the difference between your first and last interpretation. After all if "we" build new school and fund a lot of teachers, "we" are presumably going to have them teach cources on history, social sciences, etc. and do it from our precpective. One could get around this problem by not having education be centralised, but that's not what either the Nazis or Bernie were proposing.

Comment author: gjm 14 March 2016 11:09:07PM -1 points [-]

isn't it easy to find some common ground with pretty much anyone?

Well, that's why the things that tend to get described as specifically Nazi tend not to be things like "improving the education system" or even more specifically "providing good education for gifted children from all backgrounds" (er, of course some kinds of backgrounds wouldn't have been acceptable to the Nazis) that have pretty wide support from all quarters. Just as describing someone as "very like Richard Feynman" probably doesn't mean that they had some artistic talent and enjoyed drawing.

Comment author: Torchlight_Crimson 16 March 2016 07:31:30AM 3 points [-]

Well, that's why the things that tend to get described as specifically Nazi

Where by "specifically Nazi" you mean "the parts that gjm doesn't approve off".

that have pretty wide support from all quarters.

Speak for yourself. I very much don't approve of point 20 from their program. "The state is to be responsible for a fundamental reconstruction of our whole national education program" is a nice-ish sounding way of saying, "we will ram whatever propaganda we want down all kids' thoughts and force you to pay for it".

Comment author: Torchlight_Crimson 16 March 2016 01:35:13AM 0 points [-]

The corporate world is predatory, and the mercenary class of executives are certainly in it for no one but themselves, but for sheer thievery, I think only the financial industry can even begin to compete with the non-profit world. At least the corporations have to deliver to their customers on some level, or they go out of business.

Not so the non-profit charities and foundations, which often seem to exist primarily to provide those who run them a very good living.

Vox Day

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