The XYZ affair

Just as there’s a non-genetic X factor that explains why blacks test worse than whites, there’s a non-genetic Y factor that explains higher Ashkenazi performance. And in the same way, there’s a non-genetic Z factor that explains why Chinese score better than Malays in Malaysia.

 

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98 Responses to The XYZ affair

  1. Bullgear says:

    Doubtless far off on the imaginary axis.

  2. Misdreavus says:

    People are allergic to Occam’s Razor when it goes against their treasured notions.

  3. Maciano says:

    I similar phenomenon exists in Europe with regards to muslim integration. In Belgium, muslims fail because they’ve been neglected; in the Netherlands because of misguided multiculturalism; in France because of the banlieus; in Germany because of racism; in the UK because of…. On and on.

    Many ppl genuinely believe this. In the Netherlands, local governments spent huge sums of money learning muslim women to bicycle. So they would become more Dutch. It’d be funny if it wasn’t so stupid

    Nobody in power seems to want to see the pattern of muslims failing because of themselves: backward religion, consanguinity, low IQ.

    • M. M. says:

      Short url: wp.me/papuj6-m

      https://indianexpress.com/article/india/india-news-india/muslim-illiteracy-rate-india-census-report-education-3006798 (archive.fo/51d2i)
      42.7 per cent Muslims illiterate, says Census. According to the data, the percentage of illiterates is 36.4 for Hindus, 32.5 for Sikhs, 28.2 for Buddhists and 25.6 for Christians.

      https://indianexpress.com/article/explained/largest-share-of-non-workers-among-muslims-2840123 (archive.fo/Ym18k)
      Largest share of non-workers among Muslims
      60% Indians listed as ‘non-workers’ in Census data, marking a marginal improvement since 2001.

      https://scroll.in/article/812272/muslims-have-the-lowest-rate-of-enrolment-in-higher-education-in-india (archive.fo/LBcGp)
      Muslims have the lowest rate of enrolment in higher education in India. In proportion to their population, Muslims were worse-off than scheduled castes and scheduled tribes.

      …they have been living there for quite a while, didn’t help.

      • DRA says:

        Seems I read Muslim converts came from the more disadvantaged segments of Hindu society during the time of Muslim rule. It allowed them to move up in society, but didn’t change who that were otherwise.

    • Frau Katze says:

      I often wonder why Muslims are so bad. The ones from Pakistan, India or Bangladesh seem to be noticeably worse than Sikhs and Hindus from the same place,

      Presumably religion can’t have a genetic effect (except through inbreeding, but do we know that Muslims are more inbred than the others?)

      • Jim says:

        A speculation – Perhaps Islam was more attractive to lower caste Hindus than to higher caste Hindus and so converts to Islam came predominantly form the lower castes who are significantly different genetically from the higher castes.

        • gcochran9 says:

          Known to be the case.

        • Frau Katze says:

          Sounds like a good explanation.

        • Frau Katze says:

          The novelist VS Naipaul (Hindu from Trinidad) wrote a couple of non-fiction books on Muslims, including those in the subcontinent. He said that caste had survived the conversion to Islam to a considerable extent, but it wasn’t “official”. He interviewed low caste Muslims still working at the same low status occupations.

          Maybe those were the ones most interested in emigrating to Europe.

          But some higher ups must have converted too, as there is definitely an elite class in Pakistan.

          • DuanDiRen says:

            “Among the Believers” is his best book, and dear god he has a sharp eye. He has a killer knack for straight reporting that cuts to the bone.

        • Smithie says:

          Wasn’t that also true of Christianity and Sikhism? Those 3 are all more egalitarian, but it is funny, they all seem to perpetuate the idea of caste to a certain extent, even though the Gurus held large communal meals. And they take the same last names in Sikhism.

          Makes me think caste represents something real. But that begs further questions. What is it? Just ancient endogamy, of groups with separate levels of intelligence? Or are they adapted to their different environments? and what explains that difference, if they are adapted? Disease?

          • Frau Katze says:

            I don’t know much about how the Sikhs got started, or really much else about them. I did know they’re theorically egalitarian.

            At the time Islam arrived, long before Europeans arrived, the only Christian groups in India were very old and all lived in the far south. They’re still there AFAIK.

            When the Brits arrived they did not do any large scale missionary work, as this would have caused a huge conflict. But there are a handful of Christians (all low status) in Pakistan. I’m not sure if it was missionaries or what. My reading was restricted to reading current news.

            I’m at the point where I’m positively avoiding reading anymore history about Islam. It’s too depressing.

            I can only speculate about caste, It’s persistence seems to indicate something. It reminds me of economic historian Gregory Clark’s writing about the persistence of class in European. That’s on my “to read” list.

            • a-non says:

              Both Christians and Muslims in India have to some extent kept their caste — we tend to think of it as a concept from a different religion, but our categories don’t fit things very well. For instance there are surveys of churchmen of various rank, and as you’d expect the bishops are all brahmins (and know it), and then a gradation down to village deacons. I don’t know where the median Christian ranks compared to his unconverted neighbours; the most Christian regions are relatively developed. But (as others have said) Muslim converts were drawn heavily from the bottom of the caste scale.

              I don’t know whether there were biases in turning Sikh, I have a vague idea that it was whole villages, but could be wrong.

          • M. M. says:

            @Smithie

            Wasn’t that also true of Christianity and Sikhism?

            Yes afaik, yet they fare better than their Muslim Indian neighbours today.

            • Smithie says:

              Indian Christians are an interesting group. I think they have a certain amount of Syriac ancestry.

              Sikhs are interesting too because they were oppositional to Islam, and ruled the Punjab when they made up only about 1/6 the pop.

        • Rhetocrates says:

          My one possible problem with this, I bring up so someone can show me why it’s wrong:

          Islam converts by the sword instead of taking volunteers, so being more attractive to low-caste people is irrelevant.

          I think the answer is some confluence of, “Not completely irrelevant, just less influential than for, say, Christianity or Buddhism,” and, “Too, Islam encouraged caste cross-breeding by destroying the caste system, so you get regression to the mean.”

          • gcochran9 says:

            Islam has usually, not always, conquered by the sword, but that hasn’t been how they converted, mostly.

          • Frau Katze says:

            Islam has no trouble using the sword if necessary but it’s always easier to get volunteers. There are incentives: those that don’t convert have to pay special taxes, are considered low status and so on. Appealing to the low status parts of the population is just another incentive.

            Think of another system: Communism. It offered incentives, including appeals to the low status.

            (But I think the most influential and dangerous ruling was that Islam is a one way street: the penalty for leaving Islam is death. It’s taken very seriously and carried out by enthusiastic volunteers.

            The Muslims in the West aren’t free of this either. Ayatollah Khomeini pronouncing the death sentence on Salman Rushdie should have alerted everyone to the unique danger of Islam. Rushdie hadn’t even converted to another religion, he merely acted disrespectful of Islam.

            But most people. just ignored it and the press continues to this day to inform us that “Islam is peace.” Actually the word literally means “submission.”)

          • Jim says:

            The Arabs did not force Islam on the populations they conquered. Damascus was majority Christian for centuries after the Arab conquest.

            • Jim says:

              It is considerably more accurate to say that Christianity in the Americas was spread by the sword as compared to Islam in the Middle East.

              • DataExplorer says:

                When Christian populations rebeled, or after Christian crusaders got driven out of an area, it was common to convert all the Christians by the sword.

              • Frau Katze says:

                More accurate to say that both the Muslims from Arabia and the Christians of Europe did conquer said populations, both involving the sword.

                The Muslims used the incentive and one-way street system and slowly became the majority. There were still substantial numbers of Jews and Christians for a long time. There are still some Christians but the same pressure is still there and many have left. Invading Iraq destabilized the whole Middle East and made things considerably worse.

                The Conquistadors were in quite a different situation and I already went through it a few days ago. Their conquest was far more complete, greatly assisted by imported diseases. The Muslims lacked that factor.

                But I bet many Aztecs were glad to see the end of human sacrifice. Christianity itself may have struck the Aztec warriors as something of a bore by contrast. But these Christians were now running the place so that gave it added cachet.

                Most of the missionaries took their work seriously and got upset if the secular Spanish mistreated their new flocks. One in particular started sending letters back to Spain complaining about it. It is unknown if he exaggerated, but there is no doubt abuse occurred. He was higher up than a mere priest.

                Somehow these letters got out, were translated into various European languages and used as propaganda against the Spanish, who by then were involved in more than one continental war.

              • Frau Katze says:

                @DataExplorer Rebllions were definitely put down firmly and violently. In North Africa, Christianity was completely wiped out, except for Egypt.

              • Jim says:

                DataExplorer – The Crusades have nothing to do with the Arab Conquests. The date of Tours is 732 and the First Crusade was in 1096. Saladin by the way was not Arab.

                I don’t believe that there were any significant rebellions of Christians against the Arab conquerors. The early Arab states did not attempt to forcibly convert Christians. In fact the early Arab states were heavily dependent on Christians for civil administration. Greek continued to be used in government for quite a while only slowly being replaced by Arabic. Only the military was completely Arab. The process of Islamization and Arabization took many centuries.

                Sure there wasn’t a “level playing field” between Islam and Christianity under Arab rule but persecution of Moslems and Jews in the West was far greater than any persecution of Christians under the Arabs.

              • Jim says:

                Frau Katze – The Spanish certainly did prevent any open practice of the pre-conquest religions and this went far beyond just forbidding human sacrifice. It was total prohibition combined with destruction of religious sites and in the case of the Maya destruction of sacred texts. Nothing remotely like this happened under Arab conquest.

              • Jim – Amerindian religions completely alien to Spanish whereas Christianity and Islam are simply different version of Abrahamic religion.
                AFAIK Islam allows only Arabic script to be used;

            • Anonymous says:

              Dmitry Anisimov- The Arab conquerors had little experience in administrating complex states and so just took over the existing Byzantine administrative staff. These people weren’t going to learn Arabic overnight. Greek continued to be used as an administrative language for quite a while. Of course Greek in the Byzantine Empire was in most places not the common vernacular. Over a long period of time Greek was slowly replaced by Arabic in government administration.

      • Blubb says:

        No clue about Far Asian Muslims, but the Turks have a saying:

        “The good girl is married to the relative, the bad girl to the stranger.”

        When I first heard it, I thought it was a racist slur. When I had it – proudly – quoted to me by a Turk, that was a major red pill moment.

        • M. M. says:

          @Blubb

          No clue about Far Asian Muslims, but the Turks have a saying:
          “The good girl is married to the relative, the bad girl to the stranger.”

          Can you give me that in Turkish? I couldn’t google it.

      • M. M. says:

        Consanguinity in Muslim majority countries:

        Pakistan: 62.5%
        Afghanistan: 46,2%
        Arab countries: 20% – 50%
        Turkey: 21.1%

        Overview: wp.me/papuj6-s

  4. Robert says:

    American Muslims have higher household incomes than non-Muslims and are heavily represented in highly selective medical specialties.

  5. Texan99 says:

    Phlogiston, right?

  6. Peter Connor says:

    The “Y” factor for Ashkenazis being extreme tribalism and nepotism, with a receptive non-tribal host originating west of the Hajnal line….

    • Also an EXTREME cultural bias towards education.

      • SMack says:

        I can’t remember who said it first, but when Pinker gave that talk on Greg’s paper he called the Jewish love of education a myth “invented by rabbi’s sons who weren’t good at much of anything except going to school and then writing novels about it.”

        He was right. Education is not a factor here.

        • James GW says:

          Chomsky said his Russian-Jewish immigrant mother reacted to his plans for graduate school by saying, “I don’t see any signs posted in shops saying, ‘linguist wanted.'”

    • East of Hajnal line they also much over-accomplished natives, so why refer to Hajnal line at all…?

  7. Abelard Lindsey says:

    Greg, you’re perfecting Steve Sailer like sarcasm. It is so easy to be a conservative smart ass these days.

  8. Abelard Lindsey says:

    Having lived in Malaysia, I can tell you the differences between Chinese and Malay are even greater than that between white and black in the U.S. I can also tell you that it is actually illegal to talk about this in a public forum (like media).

    • Abelard Lindsey says:

      It was living in Malaysia that convinced me that HBD was real. Prior to my experiences, I was a good liberal who thought we were all equal and that all we needed to do was to Fix The Schools and everything would work out fine. More specifically, I believed the differences were mainly cultural and that the greater performance of the Japanese (I lived in Japan at the time as well) and other North east Asians was mostly due to culture.

      Dr. M also believed this at the time, which is why he had his “Look East” policy starting in 1981 as an attempt to emulate the Japanese.

      BTW, Dr. M is prime minister again. Only he is a lot more reticent towards China’s Belt and Road Initiative than he was of Japan in 1981.

      • Smithie says:

        There’s something weird about electing a guy who is 92.

      • Maciano says:

        I can understand why Malaysia will redpill you, it is an amazing spectacle. The Chinese rule everything related to money, ranging from lowly easy money like street prostitution & meat skewers stalls to highly skilled work like factories (agriculture) & banks. The Indians work the professions, restaurants, government administration and specialized industries like tea harvesting. At the Cameron Highlands, biggest tea plantations, there were no Malays at all. Everything was controlled by the Chinese, Indians, and, yes, some old English families who never left after decolonization.

        The Malays, as far as I could notice, didn’t do anything important. They just roam the streets and live there. They’re extras in their own movie.

    • Malays and Chinese says:

      Bigger differences perhaps, but certainly also different in form.

      The Chinese love business and have a skills advantage at it, and the Chinese that ended up in Malaysia probably somewhat selected (yes, they were going to work in tin mines and plantations, but I bet they were still at least a bit more commercially minded than their countrymen already are).

      Different than Whites vs Blacks, where Whites are probably a bit more skilled in education and business, but don’t really seem too much more interested in it. Perhaps closer in form to the difference between the Euroamerican average against Ashkenazi Americans.

  9. jb says:

    The conventional wisdom is that X, Y, and Z are all just “culture” (or maybe “oppression”, but that’s kind of the same thing), with any differences in the specific cases being due to differences in the specific cultures involved. I don’t think this is actually true, but I don’t see any logical problems with the explanation. Culture gives you a lot of degrees of freedom to work with, so in theory it can explain a lot. You need to get down in the weeds before the problems with the “culture” explanation for test score differences start showing up — at a high level tl;dr executive summary level of abstraction culture is as good an explanation as any.

    • Jim says:

      Of course in the long run cultural differences will themselves create genetic differences by differential selection for personality and character traits. This is genetic-cultural co-evolution.

    • Jim says:

      “Culture” cannot be a true effective cause of anything because “culture” is not a physical entity. To explain that some people wear bones in their noses because they have a bone-in-the nose culture is as uninformative as saying that opium puts people to sleep because it has a “dormitive virtue”.

      Polynucleotides are actual physical entities and can (and do) function as true effective causes of behavior and of course other biological phenomena.

      • Ursiform says:

        If culture tells you to marry your cousin, or kill babies with blue eyes, or many other things it becomes the cause of physical changes.

        • Jim says:

          “Culture” doesn’t tell you to do anything. It is not the cause of anything. People in a certain population may often marry their cousins but to explain this by saying they have a cousin-marriage culture is totally useless. Saying they have a cousin-marriage culture just means that they tend to often marry their cousins. So the explanation just says that they often marry their cousins because they belong to a culture in which people often marry their cousins. This is circular and leads nowhere.

          Only physical entities can act as causes. Polynucleotides are physical entities and can act as causes. “Culture” is an abstraction and cannot.

          • J says:

            Polynucleotides do nothing. It is their atoms, that is, their subatomic particles doing it. In fact, subatomic particles are made of quarks that are fields or something. Only fields can act as causes, polynucleotides are an abstraction and cannot. In engineering we use Newtonian physics, which like culture, is only an approximation to reality. And we know it.

            • Jim says:

              But an explanation of behavior by biochemistry is a real reduction even if biochemistry can be reduced further to fields. But since the culture of a population is just a description of how members of the population tend to behave an explanation of behavior by culture is circular and useless.

          • Capra Internetensis says:

            “Neuron” is the physical entity you’re looking for, bud.

      • jb says:

        This is just wrong. It’s like saying that “belief” can’t be a true effective cause of anything because “belief” is not a physical entity. (You can substitute “pain” or “ambition” here, or a whole host of other non-physical entities that any reasonable person understands actually do function as very effective real-world causes). If you don’t understand why you’re wrong about this then I don’t know what I can do for you.

        • asdfg456 says:

          It begs the question. Culture is not self causing. And it is not the immediate environment that causes it either as we see different peoples form similar cultures wherever they migrate to. Culture is a manifestation of the aggregate DNA of the people comprising it.

          • jb says:

            DNA is not self-causing either. Nothing is self-causing. Everything — including both DNA and culture — is the end result of a long history that includes a large element of contingency. I’m happy to acknowledge that DNA matters, and that it can have a significant influence on culture. But the claim that culture has no independent existence, that it is totally determined by DNA, is preposterous.

        • Jim says:

          “Beliefs” play no role in a scientific description of reality. They are at most epiphenomena.

          • Jim says:

            It seems totally hopeless to fit “beliefs” into any scientific system of natural laws.

          • savantissimo says:

            In the Bayesian extension of logical reasoning to cover imperfect knowledge, probability depends on prior beliefs which vary according to the state of knowledge and ability to reason from that knowledge, which knowledge is itself always a bit and often quite uncertain. People differ rationally in their beliefs, so differ rationally in the probabilities they calculate. The most fundamental scientific description of reality is in terms of probabilities, which inevitably depend on beliefs. See Jaynes’ Probability Theory: The Logic of Science.

            Your belief that belief plays no role in a correct description of reality is also directly self-refuting.

            • Anonymous says:

              People have beliefs about arithmetic but that does not mean that an account of arithmetic must refer to “beliefs”.

            • Jim says:

              Quantum mechanics produces probabilities. According to your view quantum mechanics is thus at least in part about beliefs. But does quantum mechanics apply equally well to the beliefs of a professor of physics and the beliefs of an inhabitant of Sentinel Island? If not then is it the case that quantum mechanics is not valid for the Sentinelese?

              Your view implies that objective science is not possible. Admittedly that is a rather popular philosophical view in today’s world.

          • Anonymous says:

            Physicists believe in special relativity but that does not mean that special relativity is about “beliefs”.

      • asdfg456 says:

        Great way to put it.

  10. Jim says:

    And with the Chinese whatever land they migrate to this Z factor shows up as if they were carrying it around with them. It’s almost like it’s in their DNA.

  11. mapman says:

    And all these non-genetic factors (a.k.a. turtles) all the way down.

  12. When we read about how much better schools are in other countries, we find that the Finns outscore us because they are so relaxed and permissive, while the South Koreans outscore us because they are so strict and regimented.

    Relatedly, if you break the PISA scores by race, Americans do quite well when apples are compared to apples. Asian-Americans outscore all but Shanghai, American Caucasians outscore all but Finns, American Hispanics outscore all of Latin America, and African Americans (plus Canadians) wildly outscore blacks anywhere else.

    • gcochran9 says:

      [ (relaxed and permissive ) + (strict and regimented) ] / 2 = ideal

    • Jim says:

      African Americans do better than many Middle Eastern countries.

      Yes regarding the Finns it was funny hearing the conventional wisdom assert that their success was due to starting school a year later than most other countries while of course we needed more funding for pre-school.

      Little homework is the secret of Finnish academic achievement while much homework is the secret of Taiwanese academic success.

    • RCB says:

      I thought no Sub-Saharan countries participated in PISA. Am I missing something? So I’m not sure how you’re arriving at that conclusion – yet, I have no doubt that it’s true, given that African Americans out-perform many Latin American countries.

      Here’s a relevant paper
      https://www.cgdev.org/sites/default/files/math-scores-fourteen-african-countries0.pdf

      Presumably part of the African American boost is due to ~20% admixture with whites. But not all of it.

    • Jason says:

      wildly outscore blacks anywhere else.
      I work with a pair of polyglot Nigerians who are extremely intelligent. Though unrelated they both come from the same ethnic group (the name escapes me).
      I vaguely remember reading a while ago about a West African group that scored quite high. Can anyone refresh my memory about it.

      • Frau Katze says:

        The Ibo have been locally successful. Not sure if that’s the group you had in mind.

        My sister, who teaches Math at a local college said that the black women (from Africa, we’re in Canada) did better because they were more responsible (of course all the students are pretty young.)

        Apparently in many parts of Africa the women do the lion’s share of work. That might be possible in parts of Africa, but not once humans ventured into colder areas.

      • dearieme says:

        Probably the chaps known as Ibo in my day: the label has been changed since then I think.

      • Janet says:

        As the others have noted, the Ibo/Igbo, are the so-called “Jews of Africa”. (Igbo are mostly Roman Catholic or Anglican, actually). I also work with several of them, and they’re excellent. I heard once (can’t find the cite) that an outright majority of blacks at Harvard were either Igbo immigrants, or native born children of Igbo immigrants. In Britain, Igbo children outscore white British on their GSCEs, a result of both innate intelligence and a culture which strongly supports education, hard work, and entrepreneurial spirit.

        The Yoruba people, also from Nigeria (mostly), are also notably above the African and Nigerian average in terms of school and tests. They’re about 50-50 split between Muslim and Protestant Christian; they also can’t stand the Igbo, with basically the exact same stereotypes as Jews, applied to Igbo. (The Biafrans were mostly Igbo, if you remember that war/pogrom.) It’s disputed (vehemently) how closely the two are related… which probably means, “a lot closer than either side wants to be”, I would guess.

      • dux.ie says:

        Many sources show that Nigerians are academic high performers. However I am still puzzle why the Nigerian national GRE Quant score is so low. Nationally Igbo is about 18%. I assume that those sitting for the GRE test will be self selected to have more Igbo. Those better performers will be those entering US universities. Ghanians are supposed to be smart but they also did not do well. The Indian score is thrown in for comparison.

        GRE|Country
        155.2|Eritrea
        154.1|Tunisia
        153.7|Morocco
        153.7|Mauritius
        153.2|India <—
        153.2|Egypt
        151.3|Ethiopia
        150.5|SouthAfrica
        150.2|Sudan
        149.5|Algeria

        147.4|Ghana
        146.9|Nigeria

  13. Smithie says:

    I always wonder about the context of China’s average IQ vs. the average of SE Asian countries.

    What explains the difference? Disease? Perhaps, shorter period of agriculture? Lack of cold? But Southern China is.pretty hot, and doesn’t it have tropical diseases? Did the Chinese come from the North? If they replaced the people in Southern China, why not SE Asia? Just distance?

    Then there’s Vietnam. Some put it at 100. Obviously, there has been massive movement of Chinese into the area. But if it is 100, how smart are the Hoa? And isn’t Vietnam pretty hot? Are we just talking distances again? I wonder if they have the same intestinal length as the Chinese.

    And I thought rice agriculture was supposed to be pretty demanding and Malthusian. Are SE Asians smarter than Arabs?

    • DataExplorer says:

      Judging by how well the immigrants do in Western countries, it seems that yes SE Asians are smarter than Arabs. Though Lebanese Christians do seem to do very well in the West.

      • Jim says:

        Some IQ numbers from Lynn –

                                            Malaysia      94
                                            Thailand      93
                                            Indonesia    91
                                            Philippines  88
                                            Singapore  102
        

        vs.

                                            Iraq                89
                                            Lebanon        88
                                            Morocco        87
                                            Egypt             85
                                            Qatar             80
        

        I attended high school in a town with many individuals of Lebanese Christian descent and they seemed quite intelligent and not much different from other whites.

        • Rob says:

          I likewise know some Lebanese Christians and they all identify as ethnically Phoenician. Not sure if that’s legitimate but it could be.

    • dux.ie says:

      My theory is that the SEAsians have diff freq of ADH1B2 allele which will turn many with that allele to be teetotlers and have less cumulative damage to their developing brains. Ashkenazis also have significant fraction with that allele while for European it is virtually none but the wild variants have less effects from alcohol. However for those with ADH1B2 the effect is non-linear in that if they drink the effects will be very much worse than those with the wild type. So the culture determines the break point. The data for PH and MY are weird, might be because of higher Indian or Melanesian DNA admixtures with some other mutations cancelling the effects. The Indians like the Europeans have virtually zero ADH1B*2.

      Historically many waves of ancient Northern Chinese migrated to the south because of the nomad invasions. Most Southern Chinese carries ancient Northern Chinese surnames. Very few with ancient Southern Chinese surnames remain today. The place they migrated to was central east coast around Nanjing and Shanghai which remain the current high IQ areas collectively known as Jiangnam (South of the reiver). The same name Gangnam is also adopted by the Korean but for different area.

      In ancient China the southern people were collectively called Yue which the French later pronounced it as Viet. In China the Cantonese dialect is still called Yue.

      • Peter Lund says:

        In ancient China the southern people were collectively called Yue which the French later pronounced it as Viet. In China the Cantonese dialect is still called Yue.

        Is that why so many Chinese mistakenly believe that Vietnamese is a Sinitic language?

        • dux.ie says:

          The ancient Chinese called them the “Hundred Yue/Viet”. That shows how diversed they were then. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Baiyue

          I dont know that much about languages but Cantonese and Vietnamese seem radically different. Those who know Mandarin can catch a few Cantonese phrases but I dont think they can understand anything from Vietnamese.

          An interesting word of contention for “river”, in Northern China it is “he” (pronounced closer to ho), in Southern China it is “jiang”, or the Hokkien or Korean “kang/gang”, but some claimed that jiang was originally from the Austroasiatic from the south https://www.jstor.org/stable/23756701?seq=1#metadata_info_tab_contents
          Witzel from Harvard claimed that the Indian “gang” also from the same Austroasiatic source and for very big river the word is repeated twice “Ganga” as in English Ganges.

          “”” Norman-Mei point out that the geograpnic distribution of jiang reflects
          a certain pattern. As elaborated by them, jiang was mainly used in the Chu area 楚地,which was inhabited by the Baiyue 百越 ethnic group in the archaic period. But even so, can we thereby infer that jiang is not a Chinese word, but a word borrowed from the Baiyue language 百越语? It is hard to say so.”””

  14. Calvin Hobbes says:

    Greg, I brought up your germ theory of male homosexuality in the comment stream here:

    https://lionoftheblogosphere.wordpress.com/2019/02/04/no-the-world-isnt-going-to-run-out-of-people/#comments

    Various people say you’re wrong. You may want to respond.

  15. Can someone explain why Greg says it? Readers know it, it won’t change minds of detractors.

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