The Greatest Generation

When you compare our trifling selves with the generation that landed in Normandy, invented the atomic bomb, and wrote The Big Sleep, it doesn’t look good. You could easily get the impression that the United States went straight from a Golden Age to one of cardboard, skipping silver and all the other metals.

But  when you consider that people must have had 48 chromosomes back then, rather than the current measly 46, much is explained.

Theophilus Painter, a prominent cytologist, had investigated human chromosome number in 1923. He thought that there were 24 in sperm cells, resulting in a count of 48, which is entirely reasonable. That is definitely the case for all our closest relatives (chimpanzees, bonobos, gorillas, and orangutans).

The authorities say that that Painter made a mistake, and that humans always had 46 chromosomes. But then, for 30 years after Painter’s work, the authorities said that people had 48.  Textbooks in genetics continued to say that Man has 48 chromosomes up until the mid 1950s.  Many cytologists and geneticists studied human chromosomes during that period, but they knew that there were 48, and that’s what they saw. Now they know that there are 46, and that’s what every student sees.

Either the authorities are fallible and most people are sheep, or human chromosome number actually changed sometime after World War II.  No one could believe the first alternative: it would hurt our feelings, and therefore cannot be true.  No, we have a fascinating result: people today are fundamentally different from the Greatest Generation, biologically different: we’re two chromosomes shy of a load. .    So it’s not our fault !

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108 Responses to The Greatest Generation

  1. The fourth doorman of the apocalypse says:

    I am told that at one stage people believed in something called Phlogiston as well.

  2. Polymath says:

    Seriously though, it’s a great mystery how chromosome number ever changes. When such a mutation occurs, won’t the immediate descendants of the mutant have diminished fertility? Are changes in the haploid number associated with extreme bottleneck speciation events?

  3. eurogenes says:

    Seriously though, Russia would’ve beat up Germany whether Normandy happened or not. America’s war was in the Pacific.

    • MawBTS says:

      Nice to have a seat at the table when Berlin was divvied up, though.

    • athEIst says:

      Stalin wanted the allies to invade in 1942 or 1943(and we promised both times we would). By 1944 he probably wished the allies wouldn’t. He probably would have liked returning the Spanish Gold to Franco personally.

      • Toddy Cat says:

        “Russia would’ve beat up Germany whether Normandy happened or not.”

        True – in 1944. But if the Germans had been able to commit all of the troops, planes and equipment to the Eastern Front that it held out in the west, Germany would have defeated the USSR easily, in 1941-42. Hell, they almost did anyway. If the war had simply been the Third Reich and pals against the USSR, the Cold War would have pitted the NATO against the Berlin Pact… against

        • Richard Sharpe says:

          If ifs and buts were candy and nuts …

        • Cracker1 says:

          Thank God Hitler interferred with military decisions.

        • thiscannotbethefuture says:

          Germany would’ve likely defeated any country in a one-on-one. The Soviets defeated 3/4 of NAZI forces as it is; they would’ve likely had the best chance.

          Also, we can also speculate as to how things might have been different had Stalin not purged the best of his officers, Tukachevsky in particular, not ordered a stand down in the beginning of Barbarossa, etc. (Of course, Hitler made several blunders, as well.) I’d like to hear from expert to what degree Germany failed to take Moscow for want of additional troops, machinery, etc.

          • Toddy Cat says:

            Very true about Tukachevsky and Stalin, but as you point out, that’s like asking what would have happened had Hitler allowed his generals to go for Moscow in October – it’s really hard to say. A sane Germany vs a sane USSR is an interesting question, but of course, sane leadership in both countries would have prevented the war in the first place. As for the Soviets having the best chance of defeating the Nazis one-on-one, I’m assuming you mean “European” country – the Wehrmact would have had a Hell of a time crossing the Atlantic Ocean, and after 1945, the U.S. would have had the Bomb.

          • eurogenes says:

            You don’t understand the situation on the Eastern Front. Or at the very least, you have a very superficial understanding of it.

            It was actually impossible for Germany to defeat Russia from a logistical point of view. The reason for this was that the Germans had an awful lot of trouble with the railway lines in Russia. They thought of them as basically useless, and were working to replace them entirely, while at the same time the Russians were able to move more men and equipment than the Germans using exactly the same railway lines.

            This is a complex issue though, so Google is your friend.

          • ursiform says:

            They used a different gauge on purpose. And it worked …

          • ho says:

            “and after 1945, the U.S. would have had the Bomb.”

            So?

        • magusjanus says:

          ” If the war had simply been the Third Reich and pals against the USSR, the Cold War would have pitted the NATO against the Berlin Pact”

          And quite frankly it’s quite easy to imagine that scenario being a “better” outcome in many (not all) ways for Western Civilization. Assuming anglo/US neutrality from the getgo it would have been easier for the Jews to have survived in larger numbers (Madagascar Plan or some iteration of that especially with Western pressure, perhaps relocation to the East post war), Nazism was a far less “exportable” ideology than communism so any hypothetical Cold War would be less problematic, Western Europe would not have been occupied and would have more time to build up defences, the Empire would still be together and UK not a satellite state of the US (perhaps delaying premature independence of African colonies which cost tens of millions of lives in poor governance largely pushed by US), we can imagine China not going commie so that’s tens of millions of lives saved right there, etc.

          The one big issue would be German plans for the East. There are of course the insane plans such as Hunger Plan and so on but I see those as unrealistic in post war era much like Morgenthau Plan for Germany, and would be scrapped. Economic expediency would likely prevail. HEck, that was true even during the war in many cases with Polish laborers in Germany and increasingly good living standards for them towards end of war as well fed laborers are more efficient relative to just working them to death as was more common in 42/43. And that’s under insanity of total war, under peace it’d be very hard to implement something as draconian as some of the Green Folder Plans. Possible, but unlikely especially if war is over in 2 years (most of the worst humanitarian outrages occurred in 43/44 when war took a huge turn for the worst).

          I’d argue the more likely scenario is colonization efforts in Ukraine not terribly successful, Germany running them not too dissimilar from Soviet use of them post war only more economically rational, some form of EU being implemented sooner under more explicit German dominance than today but not that much more, etc. and a large economic and potentially military rivalry with Anglo/UK power.

          Compared to the world we got with Soviet dominance of Eastern Europe, China communism, Korea/Vietnam/Cambodia/African dictatorships, near nuclear war at several points especially Cuba, Jewish holocaust, and destruction of pre-War Europe and replacement by insane progressive policies on most topics…. I’m not convinced that we are in the “Better” world.

          But I do recognize that’s a hard argument to make with many hypotheticals. Please forgive the length of the post.

    • Lesser Bull says:

      Russia was armed with American munitions, carried on American trucks.

      • gcochran9 says:

        Wrong. The US sent a lot of aid, and much of it was useful – but Soviets made ~90% of their own weapons.

        • magusjanus says:

          The main advantage to US/Anglo participation in the war was blockading Germany from supplies (food and oil especially) and the impact bombing had as of late 1944 into 1945. A hypothetical (though not realistic) strictly neutral US/UK even as late as pre-Bagration 1944 would likely eventually lead to German victory in the East though at large cost. It was the cutting Germany off from being able to trade both with other countries (Latin America) as well as themselves (US oil) that was key to the effort against the Germans.

          Regarding aid, Greg is correct with regards to total aid, but in the key year of 1942 I do believe US/Anglo aid was very important, especially up until Stalingrad when Soviet economy was under severe brunt. After that aid becomes less important.

        • Toddy Cat says:

          Totally correct about the weapons, but I’m told that the Soviets really liked and depended on our trucks. I once worked with a woman whose father was a Katyusha crewman – it was a Soviet-built rocket launcher, on an American truck (Ford or Studebaker, I forget which…)

          • MawBTS says:

            Roughly 50% of Lend-Lease was non-munition in nature. Clothes, supplies, a million miles of copper wire, even things like cameras and film. Safe to say that there was at least some Soviet propoganda made with American film equipment.

          • DK says:

            My late grandpa, who fought for three years until the V-Day, had warmest memories of the American canned meat (spam?) and trucks. Lend-lease certainly shortened the war by at least a year but it did not change the outcome – Germany would have lost anyway because it was not fully prepared for a protracted war.

      • eurogenes says:

        According to Hollywood maybe.

        The worst tanks on the Eastern Front were the American and British made tanks. The Germans just had to spit on them.

        • gcochran9 says:

          Depends on when. The Shermans were certainly competitive with the PZ-III, and had a decent chance against a PZ-IV. We sent over 4,000 Shermans – they were useful.

        • Toddy Cat says:

          “It was actually impossible for Germany to defeat Russia from a logistical point of view.”

          ‘Impossible” is a pretty big word to use, considering how close the Germans actually came. And while my understanding of the Eastern Front may be superficial, I doubt that it is to be improved by perusing Google, given all the disinformation out there. By the way, it’s too bad that you weren’t around to pass along that spitting trick to all those Germans in France killed by Shermans – they could have used it…

        • Foolish Pride says:

          When the Sherman was produced it was the second best medium tank in the world, only behind the T-34, with some features that were superior to the T-34. The Germans had yet to introduce the long 75 for the PzIV.

          Along with the T-34 and the Soviet BT Tanks, the Sherman had sloped armor, something the Germans did not.

    • john70 says:

      Normandy happened exactly because Russia was beating Germany. The Americans asked themselves: “Do we want Europe occupied in its entirety by the Soviets?”

  4. Douglas Knight says:

    Many cytologists and geneticists studied human chromosomes during that period

    What does “studied” mean here?

    • DK says:

      In ways of observing, describing and correlating their properties to other things. E.g., ever heard of polytene chromosomes?

  5. Sean says:

    Some people win the lottery and find 10,000 others have picked that number too.

    People are sheep to follow as they do, but also sheep because they tend to have a propensity to arrive at similar conclusions without reference to one another. That people had the same number of chromosomes as chimps was along the lines of the common faith in effortful cultural environment, as shown by repeated efforts to teach chimps to communicate with language, and the long history of belief that apes were much more human-like than the evidence would lead a rational observer to think.

    • MawBTS says:

      The Russians actually tried to breed human/chimp hybrids at one point. Human sperm and chimp eggs didn’t work. They were going to try orangutan sperm and human eggs, but the guy pissed off some apparatchik and got exiled to Kazakhstan. Haterz!

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

      Maybe it didn’t work because humans are literally sheep. I know I used to eat grass as a kid.

      • Sean says:

        MawBTS, I think that is now thought dubious. Just another example of how :”Realism presents itself primarily as a negative realism: the resistance that the outside world opposes to our conceptual schemes should not be seen as a failure, but as a resource – a proof of the existence of an independent world”.

        “Maybe it didn’t work because humans are literally sheep. I know I used to eat grass as a kid.” Once you’ve had grass there is no going baaack.

        Dunno where WW2 came in, but anyway I have Stofi’s last book, and I think he makes a good case that Hitler’s orders in August 1941 show his priority at that critical time was capturing resource rich territory, rather than going for Moscow in a concentrated attack (which the German high command thought was essential).

  6. Jim says:

    Judging by some of the recent history of the US the lost chromosomes must have contained the genes for common sense.

  7. IC says:

    Indeed.
    Some time you need Indoctrination (brain-wash) to make average people accepting heliocentrism as fact. The common sense only gives you geocentrism.

    At end, most common people just can not figure which one is truth on their own.

    • Realist says:

      Jonathan Gruber had the same thought……you are both correct.

    • John Hostetler says:

      No one can figure out truth on their own – even our greatest questioners and discoverers stand on the shoulders of giants.

      Funny thing though – almost every one of those questioners and discoverers for the last 6,000 years has been 44XY, and about a 3:2:1 ratio of WHG:EEF:ANE for aDNA.

      • dearieme says:

        “almost every one of those questioners and discoverers for the last 6,000 years has been 44XY, and about a 3:2:1 ratio of WHG:EEF:ANE for aDNA.” What are you talking about?

    • Richard Sharpe says:

      Is there any selection pressure on people to accept the heliocentric vs the geocentric vs the galaxy centric vs …

      That is, has anyone’s life depended on the differences between the heliocentric and the geocentric models?

      • John Hostetler says:

        Boils down to whether there has been selection pressure for the evolutionary mindset that allows revisions like heliocentrism.

        To me, the critical ingredients in that mindset are higher IQ and lower kowtowing to authority, which allow freethinking to occur in the first place, and paradoxically, high trust, which allows independent verification of the freethinker’s ideas. In a phrase, the Faustian yet trusting, European mindset.

        And it doesn’t matter that less than 1% of Europeans have this to a degree that would involve them in the original debates about things like heliocentrism – those who could debate were all products of a people with relatively high IQ, relatively low need for authority and relatively high trust. Relatively, as in relative to other populations.

        Then the question becomes whether there was selection pressure favoring the right combination of IQ, authority and trust.

        Of course there was, that was the key to Western success.

        But how much of that success involved opening up entirely new opportunities and how much was zero-sum? Because actual lives, as opposed to potential lives, only depend on selection pressure in the zero-sum situation, and I would argue Western success has been all about opening up new opportunities for population growth, first for Westerners, later for everyone. The production of such opportunity is the very nature of that reality-penetrating mindset. Very little negative selection pressure so far – the whole world has been living in implicit Malthusian denial since at least James Watt.

        How much longer?

  8. a very knowing American says:

    Why go back only to the 1950s? Consider the Victorian Age. Allowing for smaller populations and general poverty (relative to us), the Victorians are extraordinary, and humbling. How did they do it? Here’s my theory. Darwin — no ignoramus in these matters — believed that acquired traits could be inherited. He presented what he thought was very strong evidence in support of this belief. We tend to dismiss this side of his work, but suppose he was right? Suppose Lamarckian evolution really did work back in his time. Suppose in particular that by dint of grit and gumption, and heavy doses of “If,” “Invictus,” and “A message to Garcia,” Victorians were actually successful in improving their germ plasm by sheer willpower! Then spoilsports like Weismann came along, and people stopped trying, and the gene pool went all slack. Doesn’t this explain a lot? For that matter, going back further, what if preformationists used to be right?

    • gcochran9 says:

      I was merely suggested a trivial kind of intervention, something like Roswell’s aliens unleashing a virus that drastically altered the human genome. You’re talking about something more cosmic – “perhaps the very stars are held firm in their courses by the unvarying faith of the astronomers.”

      • Richard Sharpe says:

        Hmmm, that would be a little like epigenetics as most think of it, it seems. It would have to find the germ line cells in all of our ancestors and then stitch together the same pair in all precursor cells.

        That would be quite an achievement.

        Of course, it is possible that they missed a few and there are still some 46XY karyotypes still wandering around out there. Perhaps from those sperm cells already in flight when they met an ova that had already been released.

  9. sprfls says:

    Well, what the hell happened then!?

    When I recently explained to my 93 year old grandmother what it is I do at my new job, which came out extra ridiculous when broken down into not-so-perfect Russian, a pang of embarrassment hit me. It sounded so pathetic compared to her accomplishments. And when I began to think about my grandfather, well, that really made me feel like shit…

    Adversity breeds excellence. That’s why Ashkenazi accomplishment is somewhat in decline — at least that’s what I like to tell myself to explain why members of my parents’, grandparents’, and great grandparents’ generation were all successful, and why my cousins and I are all more or less shmucks.

    And that’s why I’m not a pure genetic determinist. It’s not just adversity — some social environments are better than others at extracting the best from its people.

    • Toddy Cat says:

      “some social environments are better than others at extracting the best from its people”

      That’s very true – we certainly don’t seem to be doing a very good job of it. It’s a minor matter, but threatening brilliant engineers with death or professional ruin because of their sexist sartorial choices probably isn’t helping…

      • gcochran9 says:

        I used to do some engineering, and if someone had tried on that on me, I’ve have told him to go fuck itself. Is that a lost art?

      • Ilya says:

        That caused me to look it up. To make sure, is that about the ESA scientist and his vixen-colored shirt?

        This week I started a new job at a relatively known software company, in Boston. It’s all nice, but I made the mistake of specifically mentioning “female technical writers” in my lunch conversation with some colleague programmers, including the boss; that conversation originally touching on how boring and yet non-trivial technical writing is, and how tough it is to find anyone qualified within the ranks of English majors. The next morning I had a private conversation with my boss, who explained to me how important diversity is at my company.

        The good thing is, I’ve finally paid off my mortgage, so I’m not that scared. The bad thing, I still would like to have a nice place to be employed, and so depend on obeying social taboos, part of which is not explicitly noticing the elephants in the room (or, in other words, utter lack of females in computer science, be it college or professional world). Hence, I said I will pay attention in the future, and that it was it was a careless brain fart. I did not apologetically cry, but then — I am in software (i.e. lots of jobs), not aeronautics (not many).

    • MawBTS says:

      That’s why Ashkenazi accomplishment is somewhat in decline — at least that’s what I like to tell myself to explain why members of my parents’, grandparents’, and great grandparents’ generation were all successful, and why my cousins and I are all more or less shmucks.

      The Askhenazi are still smart – 50% of the Nobel Prizes awarded last year went to Jews.

      If appearances seem otherwise, remember that much of the scientific low hanging fruit has now been picked, and revolutionary discoveries are getting fewer and further between. We’re past the stage where you can accidentally discover molecular chirality by leaving a solution sitting on a cool windowsill.

      • sprfls says:

        I guess you’re referring to 2013, because as far as I can tell it was zero in 2014. But anyways it’s a moot point. Nobel winners are in the generations above mine; the anecdotal decline I’m seeing is in people in their 20s and 30s. Also I’m not necessarily talking about the highest echelon of achievement. Regular Jewish kids, my peers, are doing worse than their parents and grandparents. Why? Yes I’ve noticed a downturn in purpose, drive, and work ethic, but again, why?

        I agree that the scientific low-hanging fruit has mostly been picked. That affects everyone equally.

        • JayMan says:

          @sprfls:

          “Regular Jewish kids, my peers, are doing worse than their parents and grandparents.”

          If this is true, outmarriage?

          • Ilya says:

            My family is also from the former USSR, though I’m 3/4 Ashkenazi. My 89 y.o. (non-Jewish) grandmother, a speech therapist, recently tutored an interesting boy: half Russian Jewish, half black (parents divorced, and mother has custody, naturally). Alas, my grandmother had not much compliment to say about the child’s intellect (and that’s despite the child’s Jewish grandfather, a mathematician, spending a lot of time tutoring the kid).

            Thus, when equalism replaces Judaism and/or mental clarity, die a wholesome race.

        • j says:

          There is a challenging, stimulating place for you. Not a dull moment!

  10. Pingback: West Hunter: The Greatest Generation | Blazing Cat Fur

  11. As the limited value of a vote in elections versus the social value of believing as one’s friends do illustrates the limited utility of independent thought, much the same is true in scientific belief. There is a hard core of advantage of getting the right answers that may prevail over time. Yet it is not the only strategy for acquiring resources and passing on one’s genes. Cheap cynicism, unrealistic optimism, and false display all also work on potential mates of both sexes.

    There is considerable safety in believing what everyone around you does.

  12. I left this site and went immediately to my email, where there was this comment from a friend: “I appreciated your comment on Facebook that “Romania changed everything for me”.

    My experience was in Berlin, Germany in the 70’s, before the wall came down. My wife, at the time a flaming liberal, and I had the opportunity to live in West Berlin for about four months, and she had the opportunity to travel to East Berlin on a couple of occasions. She came back absolutely shaken by the poverty, and the militarism, and the stark differences between where the party faithful were allowed to shop, and where everyone else lived. The contrast between what she saw in the East compared to West Berlin, and the contrast between what she had believed about life under Communism, changed everything.

    How can we be so misled by what we’re taught in college, and by what our country’s media tells us?”

    • gcochran9 says:

      I attended college about the same time you did, and I don’t remember it having any such effect on me. This led to an impassioned conversation in which I was surrounded by maybe 20 vigorous idiots on the quad: I was trying to explain how Thailand had secretly been very cooperative with the Allies during WWII even though formally allied with Japan – had been pretty good guys – and of course none of my two-minute haters knew jack about the history or paid me any mind. Nothing has changed! When you think about it, who really needs the Internet?

      • candid_observer says:

        Ok, I give up: why would anybody have an impassioned objection to the idea that Thailand was secretly cooperative with the Allies?

      • dave chamberlin says:

        “When you think about it who really needs the Internet,?”

        me.
        I walk past my darkened TV and head to my computer and there I get to read the thoughts of people who are pretty damned good at thinking. Razib Khan led me to a hundred great books to read. One crabby old fellow (my age) implies in multiple comments that idiocracy has arrived but then he and others go on with wonderful perceptions about the world around us. Sure the dumbshits are outbreeding the nerds, but I have a good life, you have a good life and our kids will have a good life, if they decide to use the good brains that genetics gave them. I don’t need no stinkin university library anymore, I have the internet. Life is good. The hyperlink is the thinking man’s channel changer.

        • “I walk past my darkened TV and head to my computer and there I get to read the thoughts of people who are pretty damned good at thinking.” Isn’t it nice? So many posts are treasures. And we get to enjoy them for free! or nearly free – in my case, for the price of “The 10,000 Year Explosion” in paperback, since its purchase is what led to the habit of reading here. I too used to “walk past my darkened TV” but now I am glad to be rid of it. 🙂

    • Jim says:

      Despite the collapse of communism the influence of Marxism in the US today is greater than it has ever been.

  13. Gordo says:

    Am I imagining it or have the last couple of posts been about how medicine is only narrowly reactive now and doesn’t go back, examine itself and look for new ways of improving health?

    Certainly there must be stuff out there which is simply being overlooked, like the antibiotics curing ulcers thing. Perhaps some database of people, lifestyles, illnesses and medication that conclusions would be drawn from if there was enough data and enough interest in ‘noticing’ connections.

    Worth a couple of billion of anyone’s money compared to what it is pissed away on now.

    Would have to be open to prevent some unfashionable conclusions being suppressed.

    Is anyone anywhere doing this, its obvious but not being done?

    • The fourth doorman of the apocalypse says:

      I have long thought that doctors are like mechanics, but perhaps not as useful.

      They have a large decision tree that they work from and they tend to know only what they have been dealing with currently.

      Maybe I am wrong and they are highly curious iconoclasts.

      • melendwyr says:

        Don’t be ridiculous. There are a few highly curious iconoclasts, and a vast sea of conformists. The proportion of the first to the second might be higher than the general population, even – as IQ rises conformity decreases, possibly because smart people don’t like having to conform to stupid people – but people aren’t consistent across issues. And when gathered together in groups, smart people can not only engage in groupthink but some up with complex and sophisticated defenses for it.

  14. mindfuldrone says:

    Erwin Schrodingers excellent and provocative piece “What is life” has the 48 chromosomes mistake. I did a double-take when I saw it.

  15. Bob says:

    Greg,

    What do you think of plasma physicist John Brandenburg’s theory that an ancient civilisation on Mars was wiped out by a nuclear attack from another alien race?

    “Ancient Martian civilisation was wiped out by nuclear bomb-wielding aliens – and they could attack Earth next, claims physicist

    Scientist is to present his theory that ancient life on Mars was massacred
    Dr Brandenburg is giving a talk on his research tomorrow in Illinois
    He says there is evidence for two nuclear explosions on Mars
    These apparently wiped out two races - the Cydonians and Utopians
    Detection of uranium and thorium on the surface is evidence for these past explosions, he claims
    And he warns we should be wary of a similar attack on Earth "
    

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-2843871/Ancient-Martian-civilisation-wiped-nuclear-bomb-wielding-aliens-attack-Earth-claims-physicist.html

  16. dearieme says:

    Aliens don’t visit very often because the last one who dropped by got nailed to a cross.

  17. The fourth doorman of the apocalypse says:

    Surely, the greatest generation is the Google Generation:

    http://spectrum.ieee.org/energy/renewables/what-it-would-really-take-to-reverse-climate-change

    As we reflected on the project, we came to the conclusion that even if Google and others had led the way toward a wholesale adoption of renewable energy, that switch would not have resulted in significant reductions of carbon dioxide emissions. Trying to combat climate change exclusively with today’s renewable energy technologies simply won’t work; we need a fundamentally different approach. So we’re issuing a call to action. There’s hope to avert disaster if our society takes a hard look at the true scale of the problem and uses that reckoning to shape its priorities.

  18. j mct says:

    I am not sure exactly about the history of the 48 chromosome stuff, except as far as some people citing this or that as scientific fact should be taken seriously, but how about this as an explanation for what the disappearing chromosome hypothesis is supposed to explain.

    I am not sure if that works as a link.

    Also, for that jayman guy, I saw this while looking at that. The good part starts about 40% of the way through!

  19. RCB says:

    Nostalgia aside, has anyone tried to gather actual data on the differences between The Greatest Generation and the current one? I’m imagining you could take psychometric tests from back then and apply them to folks now. (Isn’t this what Flynn is all about?)

    If large differences arise, we might ask why. Genetics would be implausible for large changes in 2-3 generations, unless your new sample has had a lot of gene flow.

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