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behaviour and intelligence 1

New translation, the Magna Carta
article archives at abelard's news and comment zonebehaviour and intelligence archives
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behaviour and intelligence archive 1

it’s a wise father.....

The position is similar in the UK. The oft quoted “in the interests of the child” is widely claimed.

USA probabilities

that you are ‘adulterous’: ultra-liberal 15%
  very religious 68%
  ultra-conservative 23%
  non-religious 54%
  average Jo 48%
chance ‘wife’ has already been offside 1 in 4
chance ‘husband’ has already been offside 1 in 3
source: ISBN 0471134406

UK probabilities

On average,10% of children do not have the father asserted.
(This percentage varies from 3 to 30% in various societies and levels of affluence, e.g. rich Swiss daddies are very low in the cuckold stakes—this bit from memory)
A father who is even unconsciously unsure of his paternity will show less care for ‘his’ children
  A man is 7 times more likely to ‘abuse’ stepchildren than his own,
  and 100 times more likely to kill them.
  This danger is greatest up to the age of 2 years old.
  This behaviour is common in animals and primitive tribes.
For instance, with the Ache people, 9% of children do not reach their 15th birthday if a step father is involved, whereas the figure is 1% for 2 genetic parents.
source: ISBN 0330370340

It is a wise father that knows his own child.
  Shakespeare, W., The Merchant of Venice (1596 – 8) Act 2, scene 2

the web address for this article is







vouchers and ‘equality’ of educational opportunity

First, an article on choice and quality in education, with reference to computer modelling by Nechyba.

Here is a useful report of a speech by Nechbya.

Several papers by a worker in research into market issues in education can be found within Harvard University’s site.

Fernandez and Rogerson draw attention to the fact that ‘children’ cannot borrow against future earnings in order to fund their education, and highlight this situation as a market failure.

you may find more relating to this problem in Franchise by examination education and intelligence, where I pose the question, “Who owns the child?”
There is further developed commentary at Power, ownership and freedom on the logical structure of power, and on the logic of ethics at The logic of ethics‘.


the daily slime and politician’s scare stories—why?

You are being manipulated, ever wondered why??
If you had real data, would you still vote for the same things and the same politicians? Why are you being distracted from real data?

Let’s Have More Teen Pregnancy
A sloppy but interesting article, discusses extended families. [National Review Online, 20.09.02]

Matthew Parris on confusing single parenthood and poverty, and stigmatising those already with problems. [Times, 21.09.02]

Viable economically independent #8216;work#8217; is ever less available to the uneducated.

A citizen#8217;s wage is a necessity in the changing world.
A German election ‘promise’: Mr Stoiber promises to quadruple child benefit to 600€ a month for every child under three (around 400!).

Now some facts that you are not told by the daily slime: (U.S. figures...)

  • The teen birth rate reached its highest in the 1950s.
  • Between 1991 and 1999 teen pregnancy rates fell by 12%.
  • When the children of older mothers from similar socio-economic circumstances are compared with the children of teenage mothers there is very little difference in outcomes such as criminality, substance abuse and school drop out rates. The factors which do count are level of income and whether the female was subject to physical and emotional abuse as a child.
  • Studies which compare single-parent households and two-parent households, both with similar levels of education and family harmony, find few differences regarding how the children turn out.
  • Scare campaigns can lead to self fulfilling prophesies:
    • Police and teachers tend to treat single-parent children with suspicion.
    • Children of single-parent families are more likely to be arrested than children of two-parent families for similar offences.
    • On showing teachers videos of children and telling them that particular children in the videos were from single-parent families, the teachers tended to rate the supposed single-parent children less favourably.
  • The great majority of children of single mothers do not become criminals, drug ‘abusers’ or ‘mentally ill’.
  • Children raised by single mothers tend to fare better than those raised in high conflict marriages or where the ‘father’ is ‘emotionally absent’ or ‘abusive’.

Information taken from chapter four of The Culture of Fear by Barry Glassner (Basic Books, 1999, 0465014909, US $15.

When will politicians start to tell the truth?
When will the media stop lying for sales boosts?
When will the (U.K.) Tory party decide it has no choice but reform?


the long and the short of it
big girls and little boys are at a disadvantage—next they’ll want another ‘law’.

Tall men top husband stakes
“He says the study was done on British people, so all we may be seeing is the influence of culture.”
Not very likely—

Tall guys get the girls
This article refers to a Polish study:

“This analysis is based on the medical records of nearly 4,500 Polish men aged between 25 and 60.

“Once the researchers had removed individuals who might skew the results, they found that childless men were on average three centimetres (1.25 inches) shorter than men who had fathered at least one child.”

Short Men Syndrome
And then some rather more robust commentary from darkest Africa, where political correctness is less ‘advanced’. It even has comments on that well-known scientific phenomenon known as ‘duck’s disease’!

“And short men can be very annoying. They move around with their inferiority complex and will frown at the remotest reference of inadequacy even if it is directed at a domestic cat.”

And if all that wasn’t unfair enuf...
Tall men and slim women ‘earn more’

“The study, by the London Guildhall University, stated that short men and plain or overweight women are taking home thousands of pounds less in their pay packets than their colleagues.”


are you worrying enough about your nose?

Is your nose average enough?
How about taking a knife to it?
What did your nose ever do for you?
Show your nose just who is in charge—cut your nose off and improve your face.

Stop worrying about iraq, find a really interesting worry.
Who’s in charge, you or your nose?
Go teach the damned thing a lesson it won’t forget in a hurry.
[Independent, 25.08.02]


Forget the article—just consider the implications.....

i want a bayyybeeeeeeeee!......or burn all condoms.....

Two women who want to get pregnant via IVF treatment, and are launching an unprecedented court action to prevent their former partners destroying their frozen fertilised embryos. Both relationships have ended since the embryos were stored, and the men involved have decided that they no longer want their former partners to have their babies. The women now claim that the law covering such IVF treatment, which insists on the explicit prior consent of both parties, is an infringement of their human rights.
[Times, 26.08.02]

‘abduction epidemic’ hyped up by media
the numbers of children being abducted are reducing, but the press and media know what sells newspapers. But such behaviour does not serve public education and rational behaviour.

a probable link in the genetic foundations of intelligence....

Language is not enough, but it is almost certainly part of the foundation of the difference between the intelligence of other monkeys and of humans.
[, 15.08.02]

One gene which may affect intelligence has been found ( see Ridley, Genome, pp. 87 – 89). For further understanding see ‘intelligence’: misuse and abuse of statistics.

If you wish to go closer, look at the ideas of emergent properties and memes.


maths anybody....this must be seen to be ‘appreciated’....

an example of the ‘original’
don’t look it’s rude....very...

ghouls’ gallery!

here are neat photos of Abelard’s grave—how boring, no windows!
but this is a real fun site for the otherwise humoured. Think of your hero/ine and find a piccy of their bone house—hours of endless fun—well, at least ten minutes.
glory wot is out there on the ocean of the net.
see if your grave stone is listed yet, just to see if you are still with us.....


“Here’s looking at you
“Used to be your deceased relative’s ashes went into an urn on the mantel. Now they can be incorporated into original paintings.”

ever heard of the word cremains! I wonder if it’s the first of April and I didn’t notice, or perhaps the pope has decided to steal some more days (if you don’t follow, look up Pope Gregory the thirteenth).

the web address for this article is


manipulating public opinion....

quietly plotting behind the innocuous screen called fpc, otherwise known as the foreign policy centre, are

Rt Hon Tony Blair MP
Rt Hon Robin Cook MP

from the fpc site:
WINNING THE EURO REFERENDUM: A guide to public opinion and the issues that affect it, Mark Leonard and Tom Arbuthnott (eds), 3 September 2001, 14.95 plus p+p. this can be ordered from amazon.

note that to read about this manoeuvering of ‘your’ government will cost you at least 16, that is if you were ever to find out about this little backwater of intrigue......ab

Winning the euro referendum is the most detailed analysis yet of public opinion and the Euro. A host of experts probe the true state of public opinion, draw lessons from other referendums across the EU and work out what arguments work with different sectors of society,” runs the blurb. “The most detailed blueprint to date on ways and means of winning the euro referendum” Matthew d’Ancona, The Sunday Telegraph.

in other words, don’t be honest and open. give a different message to each audience, as you try to con them into getting your way. don’t attempt to generate a rational case and argue it in public, because in the case of emu, that simply cannot be done....ab

The Oval Office by Dick Morristhe best modern book i know on manipulating public opinion is behind the oval office by dick morris. this is way the best of his books that i have seen; his others which i have looked at i regard as shallow pot-boilers....ab
Dick Morris, Behind the Oval Office : Winning the Presidency in the Nineties 1998, Renaissance Books, pbk, 1580630537, / 1580630537,


child prodigy

commentary by abelard

In current society, optimal IQ is probably no higher than ~160 (sd 15) or ~1 person in 2000 (in Mensa terms that would be ~200 ‘IQ’). That is, bright enuf to be cleverer than most people around, but still in contact with most ‘normal’ people in the society.

It gets very difficult to relate, if one is sane, to a society that is not sane; this is particularly a problem when one is young. Consider a child that is in an age-based class, but who is as knowledgeable at 8 as a 16 year-old. Imagine that many teachers are not entirely secure ego-wise and that frequently the 8 year-old knows better than teacher. The teacher often does not like being corrected in front of class by an 8 year-old. The simplisms of a world view, suited to ‘normal’ 8 year olds, easily rankles the much better-educated 8 year-old, let alone them suffering the crushing boredom and time wasting inherent in attempting to learn in such an environment.

Much socialisation is learnt as a child, a great deal of that in interaction with contemporaries. A seriously intelligent and able child in this position can not relate as a peer to such children. Even in highly selective schools, such a child is unlikely ever to meet an age peer; even at ~160 IQ it is becoming a marginal chance (remember 1:2000). That makes it difficult for such children to fit in as adults, because they haven’t developed fully functional coping strategies.

Often such children play the clown, or attempt to hide their ability. It is further not uncommon for them to start well, sailing through a curriculum with little or no effort —thus they often can learn habits of laziness. Steadily, the work gets just that little harder; but the inclination to work has been dulled or, even, the realisation that such effort is needed has not been formed. Thence the brighter child often starts to fall behind, losing foundation information which makes regaining ground ever more difficult. Having been ahead, the tortoises gradually overtake them, yet once more the social tools to correct the difficulties are not available. Embarrassment at showing they do not know, having previously being well ahead, leads the child to hide their problem, and, of course, being bright, they can become rather good at that counter-productive skill; whereas teachers will often overlook such problems, due to their poor training. After all, the child who does not know must be dull, it is hardly likely to be a teacher problem!

‘Too much’ ability is also widely not welcomed in groups of adults. If you study serious innovators, you will find very large numbers of them did not adjust well and that, often, they were not exactly appreciated in their societies while they were still living. Such people threaten power structures and status quo. They’re just fine as heroes when they are good and ded. But most adult groups do not want a colleague who can easily out compete them for top jobs.

For educating young children, see also laying the foundations for sound education.

For more on IQ and statistics, see
Is intelligence normally distributed? by Cyril Burt and
‘intelligence’: misuse and abuse of statistics

  punishment as altruism
article recommended....

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