Monthly Archives: August 2018

Natural Aristocracy

Gregory Clark finds that social status is strongly heritable. Combined with a very high degree of assortative mating for the genetic factors behind this heritability, social mobility is surprisingly low. This happens without anyone particularly trying to make it this … Continue reading

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You know, it shouldn’t exist. Human history and prehistory is crammed with all kind of mayhem and trauma: infant mortality, infanticide, genocidal fights with neighboring tribes.  You routinely lost family and routinely killed enemies. Childbirth hurts a lot.  What’s the … Continue reading

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Notes from the class struggle

Suppose that 90% of people are farmers, and 10% are in other occupations, occupations that on the whole have greater prestige and remuneration. Like being a tailor, or a banker, or a king. There is reason to think that those … Continue reading

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Gaussian anomaly

Intelligence is highly heritable- so generally, when someone is far smarter than average, his parents are at least somewhat above average. But Gauss’s parents sure looked ordinary: his father had menial jobs such as gardener and street butcher, while his … Continue reading

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monogenic vs polygenic

Imagine that there was a mutation [Syndrome X] that, by itself, made you ten centimeters shorter than you otherwise would be. It works by messing up iodine metabolism. What environment influences could modify its course?  Maybe growth hormone could make … Continue reading

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A Private Cosmos

There are false things that most believe, and other false things that many people believe.  One less-examined category are false things believed by, say just one guy.  The things I’m thinking about aren’t ones that readily fall into classic categories … Continue reading

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Secret sauce

All my kids have now graduated from the local high school. I wondered  how many of the teachers realized what they were dealing with. Talking with my boys, it seems that two did, while most were sure that the rents … Continue reading

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