Forman 0196-2, Forman Frank

James White ([email protected]) wrote:
: On Jan 10, 1996 05:11:25 in article ,
: ‘[email protected] (Matt Nuenke)’ wrote:

: >Again I agree. Classification of subspecies however is still
: >valid, and is apparently important to the American Kennel Club
: >and to the NAACP.

: This comment is loaded. It contains the implication that there are in fact
: subspecies of Humans and there are not. There is one species “homo sapient
: sapiens”. That the NAACP and the American Kennel Club are on a par with
: each other, which is a propaganda technique called damning with faint
: praise. Finally that racial classifications are all done by the NAACP and
: no other American Institution which is also not true.

Well, Jim, I sure wish you’d tell give us some examples of species which
can clearly be divided into subspecies and other species in which such
division cannot be done. Then I’d like you to show why man falls in the
latter group.

Even if yo do this, there are still races in the layman’s and the
government’s sense. Are all of these groups equal in capacity for
academic and economic achievement? If so, I’d like to see the evidence.

Try to keep on thread, the first word of which is “evidence.”

Frank

From [email protected] Fri Jan 12 15:43:33 PST 1996
Article: 72565 of alt.politics.correct
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From: [email protected] (frank forman)
Subject: Re: Evidence FOR Racial Equality??
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Rainier H. Spencer ([email protected]) wrote:
: tics.usa.constitution:
: References: <[email protected]> <[email protected]>
: Organization: Emory University
: Distribution: inet

: frank forman ([email protected]) wrote:

: : Well, Jim, I sure wish you’d tell give us some examples of species which
: : can clearly be divided into subspecies and other species in which such
: : division cannot be done. Then I’d like you to show why man falls in the
: : latter group.

: Every kind of subspecies classification is arbitrary to some extent.
: Humans fall into the latter group because there is no consistent criteria
: to which one can appeal as a basis for racial categorization. The lower
: the number of criteria (skin color only) the more obviously false the
: classification; the higher the number of criteria, the lower the
: correlation to racial groupings.

As far as what I can tell from what you said, your remarks can be
applied to the problems of classification of subspecies no matter which
species are under discussion. That’s why I asked for “examples of species
which can clearly be divided into subspecies….” above.

: : Even if yo do this, there are still races in the layman’s and the
: : government’s sense.

: Indeed. Much the same as there was a common idea of a flat-Earth for
: Medieval Europeans. Do we want to say that their Earth *really* was flat
: just because their observations led them to think so?

Certainly not. But I am not demanding that laymen use exactly the same
concepts that biologists use. Each has their uses.

: Are all of these groups equal in capacity for
: : academic and economic achievement?

: There are no racial groups in the first place. Population mixture has
: been going on for at least 3,000 years, and it’s been rampant in the past
: 500 or so.

My request for positive evidence FOR equality remains. By “these”
groups, I means races in the layman’s or government’s sense. If you don’t
have any evidence here, maybe someone else does.

From [email protected] Fri Jan 12 15:43:34 PST 1996
Article: 72567 of alt.politics.correct
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From: [email protected] (frank forman)
Subject: Re: Evidence FOR Racial Equality??
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Bertil Jonell ([email protected]) wrote:
: In article ,
: frank forman wrote:
: >I gather that you’ve read this book that you call excellent. What positive
: >evidence did he give FOR racial equality?

: Ever heard of Occam and his razor?

Frustra fit per plura quod potest fieri per pauciora.

Frank

From [email protected] Fri Jan 12 17:01:20 PST 1996
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From: [email protected] (frank forman)
Subject: Re: Evidence FOR Racial Equality??
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James White ([email protected]) wrote:
: On Jan 10, 1996 05:11:25 in article ,
: ‘[email protected] (Matt Nuenke)’ wrote:

: >Again I agree. Classification of subspecies however is still
: >valid, and is apparently important to the American Kennel Club
: >and to the NAACP.

: This comment is loaded. It contains the implication that there are in fact
: subspecies of Humans and there are not. There is one species “homo sapient
: sapiens”. That the NAACP and the American Kennel Club are on a par with
: each other, which is a propaganda technique called damning with faint
: praise. Finally that racial classifications are all done by the NAACP and
: no other American Institution which is also not true.

Well, Jim, I sure wish you’d tell give us some examples of species which
can clearly be divided into subspecies and other species in which such
division cannot be done. Then I’d like you to show why man falls in the
latter group.

Even if yo do this, there are still races in the layman’s and the
government’s sense. Are all of these groups equal in capacity for
academic and economic achievement? If so, I’d like to see the evidence.

Try to keep on thread, the first word of which is “evidence.”

Frank

From [email protected] Fri Jan 12 17:01:21 PST 1996
Article: 20587 of alt.activism
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From: [email protected] (frank forman)
Subject: Re: Evidence FOR Racial Equality??
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Rainier H. Spencer ([email protected]) wrote:
: tics.usa.constitution:
: References: <[email protected]> <[email protected]>
: Organization: Emory University
: Distribution: inet

: frank forman ([email protected]) wrote:

: : Well, Jim, I sure wish you’d tell give us some examples of species which
: : can clearly be divided into subspecies and other species in which such
: : division cannot be done. Then I’d like you to show why man falls in the
: : latter group.

: Every kind of subspecies classification is arbitrary to some extent.
: Humans fall into the latter group because there is no consistent criteria
: to which one can appeal as a basis for racial categorization. The lower
: the number of criteria (skin color only) the more obviously false the
: classification; the higher the number of criteria, the lower the
: correlation to racial groupings.

As far as what I can tell from what you said, your remarks can be
applied to the problems of classification of subspecies no matter which
species are under discussion. That’s why I asked for “examples of species
which can clearly be divided into subspecies….” above.

: : Even if yo do this, there are still races in the layman’s and the
: : government’s sense.

: Indeed. Much the same as there was a common idea of a flat-Earth for
: Medieval Europeans. Do we want to say that their Earth *really* was flat
: just because their observations led them to think so?

Certainly not. But I am not demanding that laymen use exactly the same
concepts that biologists use. Each has their uses.

: Are all of these groups equal in capacity for
: : academic and economic achievement?

: There are no racial groups in the first place. Population mixture has
: been going on for at least 3,000 years, and it’s been rampant in the past
: 500 or so.

My request for positive evidence FOR equality remains. By “these”
groups, I means races in the layman’s or government’s sense. If you don’t
have any evidence here, maybe someone else does.

From [email protected] Fri Jan 12 17:01:22 PST 1996
Article: 20590 of alt.activism
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From: [email protected] (frank forman)
Subject: Re: Evidence FOR Racial Equality??
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Bertil Jonell ([email protected]) wrote:
: In article ,
: frank forman wrote:
: >I gather that you’ve read this book that you call excellent. What positive
: >evidence did he give FOR racial equality?

: Ever heard of Occam and his razor?

Frustra fit per plura quod potest fieri per pauciora.

Frank

From [email protected] Sat Jan 13 11:38:53 PST 1996
Article: 20706 of alt.activism
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From: [email protected] (frank forman)
Subject: Re: Evidence FOR Racial Equality??
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Rainier H. Spencer ([email protected]) wrote:
: :tics.usa.constitution
: References: <[email protected]>
: Organization: Emory University
: Distribution: inet

: frank forman ([email protected]) wrote:

: : My request for positive evidence FOR equality remains. By “these”
: : groups, I means races in the layman’s or government’s sense. If you don’t
: : have any evidence here, maybe someone else does.

: The “layman’s or government’s sense” is a biological joke. The “layman’s
: or government’s sense” stems ultimately from a mistaken belief in the
: biological reality of race, so claiming that you are talking about the
: “layman’s or government’s sense” does *not* relieve you of the
: responsibility to provide evidence for the existence of biological
: race–especially if you want to argue for intellectual differences in
: these alleged groups.

But I am not arguing that there are biological races in homo sapiens,
even though no one is responding to another request of mine for some
help on what race means by giving examples of species in which there are
clearly marked races and/or subspecies and different species in which
there are no such clearly marked races and/or subspecies. I’m still
waiting on that.

Still, men are grouped into what the layman and the government calls
races. And I still really do want to know about the positive evidence FOR
innate equality with respect to psychological matters of these groups.

Also, contrary to what you say, I am not arguing FOR intellectual
differences. I’m just trying to get the evidence FOR equality. Lots of
people believe in this equality, esp. among advocates of affirmative
action programs, and I’d like to get the evidence and look at it.

Frank

From [email protected] Sat Jan 13 11:38:55 PST 1996
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From: [email protected] (frank forman)
Subject: Re: Evidence FOR Racial Equality??
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Rainier H. Spencer ([email protected]) wrote:

[all snipped down to here:]

: In the absence of biological race, the assumption must be one of
: equality. There is no reason to place the burden of proof on the
: argument for equality, as you are doing. This is another area of your
: endeavor that I think is flawed logically. Finally, the type of equality
: the advocates of affirmative action are after are for the most part
: matters of equality of treatment–not arguments for equality of
: intellect–because, as I’ve stated, such intellectual equality is assumed.

But I’m not placing any burden of proof anywhere and am not arguing about
an assumptions. I’m just asking for positive evidence for equality among
certain subsets of mankind, whether they are “biological races” or not.
If the differences in achievement among these subsets turn out to be
entirely environmental, we might be able to *rank* these various
environmental influences and then attack them in a sensible and
cost-effective manner. Deficiencies in protein are much cheaper to remedy
than differences in parental environment, for example. But I have no idea
which is more important. And, remember, even if part of the differences
is hereditary in origin, environment will still matter.

I’d like to get the facts. Then we can go into moral and political
philosophy, in the hopes of getting some facts about those subjects, even
though the record of achievment here is rather slight.

Frank

From [email protected] Sat Jan 13 11:38:56 PST 1996
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From: [email protected] (frank forman)
Subject: Re: Evidence FOR Racial Equality??
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Aaron Boyden ([email protected]) wrote:
: On Thu, 11 Jan 1996, frank forman wrote:

: > Well, Jim, I sure wish you’d tell give us some examples of species which
: > can clearly be divided into subspecies and other species in which such
: > division cannot be done. Then I’d like you to show why man falls in the
: > latter group.

: Biologists seem to feel that the subspecies of humanity include homo
: sapiens neanderthalis (now extinct), and homo sapiens sapiens (still
: around, and including all of us). I don’t know of any other recognized
: subspecies of homo sapiens. This is, I admit, an appeal to authority,
: but I think it’s sufficient to put some kind of burden of evidence in
: your court.

This is quite interesting, and I’d like to know what *concept* of species
biologists are using here. The preferred division into species is
interbreedabilty, though there are plenty of borderline cases (e.g.,
lions and tigers can interbreed and even have fertile offspring, as I
recall). Indeed, this has become a hot issue with regard to the
Endangered Species Act, since subspecies are not protected under the Act.
(There was a piece about this in _Chronicles of Higher Education_ some
months ago, with charges of specieism and subspecieism flying around.)

But when interbreedability is unknown, biologists will go ahead and
classify on the basis of outward appearances. As far as I know,
biologists do not know whether homo erectus could interbreed with homo
sapiens, but they look different, so they are classified as separate
species. Regarding h.s.neanderthal and h.s.sapiens, I’m not sure that it
is in fact established that the two are could in fact interbreed. That
there seem to be no pure neanderthals around may mean that they were not.
But certain anthropologists think that h.s.s. did not entirely
exterminate the neanderthals but picked up some neanderthal genes by
interbreeding. This explains why we seem to find subspecies (racial)
characteristics among living humans that parallel those of earlier forms
of man. Check out the last part of Francisco J. Ayala, “The Myth of Eve:
Molecular Biology and Human Origins,” _Science_ 1995 December 22.

It’s a complex and fascinating subject, and the controversies will
continue. So I might have asked whether h.s.sapiens can be meaningfully
divided into sub-sub-species. And in cases like man (if the “certain
anthropologists” I spoke of in the last paragraph are correct), we might
need some new terminology to descirbe divisions of a species that
inherited those features describing the divisions from intermixture.

The problem with anything biological is that the world is more
complicated than we would like and that our concepts and definitions are
never quite adequate. We get to work on refining our concepts, but
looking at the world some more, we find there are still things we have
missed.

If you think biology is in a bad way, just think about the human
sciences. Just ask yourself how may *cultures* there are in the world.

Pause for sixty seconds, please.

See the problem? You can argue that the world is now so interconnected
that there’s really only *one*, global culture, or you can say there are
so many that each of us belongs to several (nation, language, work,
hobbies, religious and political beliefs, etc.).

Nevertheless, culutre is real. Food for thought.

Frank

From [email protected] Sat Jan 13 11:38:57 PST 1996
Article: 20857 of alt.activism
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From: [email protected] (frank forman)
Subject: Re: Evidence FOR Racial Equality??
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A note about ad hominems:

James White and some others have been attacking my person and maligning
my motives. I think it is best not to respond to these attacks, since
they lead to useless flame wars and stray away from the main subject,
which is not Frank Forman’s character. If anyone wants to start
newsgroups about me, such as alt.fan.frank_forman or
alt.flame.frank_forman, that’s fine, though I suspect they will not
become very active. Indeed, a UseNet group devoted to my greatest her,
alt.fan.beethoven, has been around for a few weeks now and has gotten
only a couple of postings, one by me on his unrecorded works.

Still, I’m flattered by these attacks, since they attribute to me
god-like powers:

Frank is a racist, therefore the races are equal.
Frank is engaging in propaganda, therefore the races are equal.
Frank has a thinly disguised agenda, therefore the races are equal.
Frank has a closed mind and will not accept any evidence we offer him,
therefore the races are equal.

It’s as though if I opened my mind, the races would respond by becoming
unequal.

Come to think of it, not even the god of the Bible had that much power:
his opinions and wishes did not stop man from sinning.

Frank

From [email protected] Sat Jan 13 11:55:16 PST 1996
Article: 72732 of alt.politics.correct
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From: [email protected] (frank forman)
Subject: Re: Evidence FOR Racial Equality??
Message-ID:
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Rainier H. Spencer ([email protected]) wrote:
: :tics.usa.constitution
: References: <[email protected]>
: Organization: Emory University
: Distribution: inet

: frank forman ([email protected]) wrote:

: : My request for positive evidence FOR equality remains. By “these”
: : groups, I means races in the layman’s or government’s sense. If you don’t
: : have any evidence here, maybe someone else does.

: The “layman’s or government’s sense” is a biological joke. The “layman’s
: or government’s sense” stems ultimately from a mistaken belief in the
: biological reality of race, so claiming that you are talking about the
: “layman’s or government’s sense” does *not* relieve you of the
: responsibility to provide evidence for the existence of biological
: race–especially if you want to argue for intellectual differences in
: these alleged groups.

But I am not arguing that there are biological races in homo sapiens,
even though no one is responding to another request of mine for some
help on what race means by giving examples of species in which there are
clearly marked races and/or subspecies and different species in which
there are no such clearly marked races and/or subspecies. I’m still
waiting on that.

Still, men are grouped into what the layman and the government calls
races. And I still really do want to know about the positive evidence FOR
innate equality with respect to psychological matters of these groups.

Also, contrary to what you say, I am not arguing FOR intellectual
differences. I’m just trying to get the evidence FOR equality. Lots of
people believe in this equality, esp. among advocates of affirmative
action programs, and I’d like to get the evidence and look at it.

Frank

From [email protected] Sat Jan 13 11:55:18 PST 1996
Article: 72903 of alt.politics.correct
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From: [email protected] (frank forman)
Subject: Re: Evidence FOR Racial Equality??
Message-ID:
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Rainier H. Spencer ([email protected]) wrote:

[all snipped down to here:]

: In the absence of biological race, the assumption must be one of
: equality. There is no reason to place the burden of proof on the
: argument for equality, as you are doing. This is another area of your
: endeavor that I think is flawed logically. Finally, the type of equality
: the advocates of affirmative action are after are for the most part
: matters of equality of treatment–not arguments for equality of
: intellect–because, as I’ve stated, such intellectual equality is assumed.

But I’m not placing any burden of proof anywhere and am not arguing about
an assumptions. I’m just asking for positive evidence for equality among
certain subsets of mankind, whether they are “biological races” or not.
If the differences in achievement among these subsets turn out to be
entirely environmental, we might be able to *rank* these various
environmental influences and then attack them in a sensible and
cost-effective manner. Deficiencies in protein are much cheaper to remedy
than differences in parental environment, for example. But I have no idea
which is more important. And, remember, even if part of the differences
is hereditary in origin, environment will still matter.

I’d like to get the facts. Then we can go into moral and political
philosophy, in the hopes of getting some facts about those subjects, even
though the record of achievment here is rather slight.

Frank

From [email protected] Sat Jan 13 11:55:19 PST 1996
Article: 72911 of alt.politics.correct
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From: [email protected] (frank forman)
Subject: Re: Evidence FOR Racial Equality??
Message-ID:
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Aaron Boyden ([email protected]) wrote:
: On Thu, 11 Jan 1996, frank forman wrote:

: > Well, Jim, I sure wish you’d tell give us some examples of species which
: > can clearly be divided into subspecies and other species in which such
: > division cannot be done. Then I’d like you to show why man falls in the
: > latter group.

: Biologists seem to feel that the subspecies of humanity include homo
: sapiens neanderthalis (now extinct), and homo sapiens sapiens (still
: around, and including all of us). I don’t know of any other recognized
: subspecies of homo sapiens. This is, I admit, an appeal to authority,
: but I think it’s sufficient to put some kind of burden of evidence in
: your court.

This is quite interesting, and I’d like to know what *concept* of species
biologists are using here. The preferred division into species is
interbreedabilty, though there are plenty of borderline cases (e.g.,
lions and tigers can interbreed and even have fertile offspring, as I
recall). Indeed, this has become a hot issue with regard to the
Endangered Species Act, since subspecies are not protected under the Act.
(There was a piece about this in _Chronicles of Higher Education_ some
months ago, with charges of specieism and subspecieism flying around.)

But when interbreedability is unknown, biologists will go ahead and
classify on the basis of outward appearances. As far as I know,
biologists do not know whether homo erectus could interbreed with homo
sapiens, but they look different, so they are classified as separate
species. Regarding h.s.neanderthal and h.s.sapiens, I’m not sure that it
is in fact established that the two are could in fact interbreed. That
there seem to be no pure neanderthals around may mean that they were not.
But certain anthropologists think that h.s.s. did not entirely
exterminate the neanderthals but picked up some neanderthal genes by
interbreeding. This explains why we seem to find subspecies (racial)
characteristics among living humans that parallel those of earlier forms
of man. Check out the last part of Francisco J. Ayala, “The Myth of Eve:
Molecular Biology and Human Origins,” _Science_ 1995 December 22.

It’s a complex and fascinating subject, and the controversies will
continue. So I might have asked whether h.s.sapiens can be meaningfully
divided into sub-sub-species. And in cases like man (if the “certain
anthropologists” I spoke of in the last paragraph are correct), we might
need some new terminology to descirbe divisions of a species that
inherited those features describing the divisions from intermixture.

The problem with anything biological is that the world is more
complicated than we would like and that our concepts and definitions are
never quite adequate. We get to work on refining our concepts, but
looking at the world some more, we find there are still things we have
missed.

If you think biology is in a bad way, just think about the human
sciences. Just ask yourself how may *cultures* there are in the world.

Pause for sixty seconds, please.

See the problem? You can argue that the world is now so interconnected
that there’s really only *one*, global culture, or you can say there are
so many that each of us belongs to several (nation, language, work,
hobbies, religious and political beliefs, etc.).

Nevertheless, culutre is real. Food for thought.

Frank

From [email protected] Sat Jan 13 11:55:20 PST 1996
Article: 72914 of alt.politics.correct
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From: [email protected] (frank forman)
Subject: Re: Evidence FOR Racial Equality??
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A note about ad hominems:

James White and some others have been attacking my person and maligning
my motives. I think it is best not to respond to these attacks, since
they lead to useless flame wars and stray away from the main subject,
which is not Frank Forman’s character. If anyone wants to start
newsgroups about me, such as alt.fan.frank_forman or
alt.flame.frank_forman, that’s fine, though I suspect they will not
become very active. Indeed, a UseNet group devoted to my greatest her,
alt.fan.beethoven, has been around for a few weeks now and has gotten
only a couple of postings, one by me on his unrecorded works.

Still, I’m flattered by these attacks, since they attribute to me
god-like powers:

Frank is a racist, therefore the races are equal.
Frank is engaging in propaganda, therefore the races are equal.
Frank has a thinly disguised agenda, therefore the races are equal.
Frank has a closed mind and will not accept any evidence we offer him,
therefore the races are equal.

It’s as though if I opened my mind, the races would respond by becoming
unequal.

Come to think of it, not even the god of the Bible had that much power:
his opinions and wishes did not stop man from sinning.

Frank

From [email protected] Tue Jan 16 01:14:56 PST 1996
Article: 24921 of can.politics
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From: [email protected] (frank forman)
Subject: Re: Why altruists and liberals (and conservatives) are evil
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Brad Aisa ([email protected]) wrote:

[much snipped from an actually very nicely written article]
: But Objectivism does not accept responsibility for the cognitive and moral
: state of persons mangled by antithetical doctrines. All it makes claims for
: is its being a correct identification of the facts of reality, qua
: philosophy. I have yet to see anyone provide even a remotely convincing
: refutation of Objectivism’s ethics

That’s because you put them all into your killfiles, Brad. No, in my
“Patch Needed for ‘The Objectivist Ethics,'” I did not refute it in the
sense of showing something else to be true, but htere are serious holes
in her arguments. Maybe someone else on a.p.o. can call his attention to it.

Or, if you have the patch, call *my* attention to the patch.

Frank

From [email protected] Sat Jan 20 12:01:10 PST 1996
Article: 22384 of alt.activism
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From: [email protected] (frank forman)
Subject: Re: Evidence FOR Racial Equality??
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alt.discrimination:41503

Look, friends, *all* I am after is whatever positive arguments anyone has
on this business of equality among various breeding groups of man. Of
course I have an “agenda,” and that it to bring into question a large
number of social policies that are designed to eliminate various observed
inequalities of outcome regarding academic and economic achievement. If
there are substantial genetic differences between what laymen call
“races” (e.g., white and black) or “ethnic groups”(e.g., Hispanic and
non-Hispanic), then these social policies will not achive their goals.

Let’s see the evidence! Now I rather strongly suspect that genetic
variation between groups is great and can potentially account for a large
measure of the differences in results that we see. And this is so, not
just for things like average income but whole national styles. Thus, I
might hypothesize that the very early _Origins of English Individualism_
(to cite the title of a controversial book by Alan Macfarlane) is due to
selection for certain qualities of temperament that can lead to
indiviudalistic attitutes. Thus, England was subject to wave after wave
of invaders (Celts, Anglo-Saxons, Danes, Normans). Invaders are
entrepreneurs of a sort: they seek opportunites, find them, and exploit
them. They are not the sort of people who uncritically accept the old
ways of doing things. And when these raiders settle down, they become
traders, putting their entrepreneurial talents to work, not on taking
things by force, but on seeking, finding, and exploiting opportunities
for mutual trade for mutual benefit. It was the repeated invasions that
changed the mix in the gene pool on that island and led to a population
that had more of the entrepreneurial temperament than those populations
on the continent of Europe.

This is all speculation on my part, but it is not absurd on the face of
it. Surely, other factors were involved in making England the first
country to embrace industrial capitalism. And these other factors will
surely interact each other and with the genetic effects of population
changes. No less an authority than Max Weber, in the introduction to _The
Protestant Ethic and the Spirit of Capitalism_, said he suspected that
genetic factors played a role in these historical events but that he was
unable–in 1904, now–to establish what that role might be.

Weber’s work, of course, has generated an incredible amount of
commentary, and some historians like Fernand Braudel are contemptuously
dismissive of Weber’s whole thesis. But then, historical theses are
always controversial. Was it slavery, economics, or states-rights that
was the main cause of the Civil War a/k/a the War of Northern Agression?
The debates fly back and forth, and ultimately perhaps each historian can
only give his own personal relative weights to each of the candidate
causes. There probably is never any one, sole cause of anything in
history that drives everything else. I think adding group genetic
differences to the list of causative factors would make history far more
interesting. (The thesis that the North was made up of Anglo-Saxons,
while the South was made up more largely of Celts, resurfaces repeatedly
in discussions of the Civil War. I do not subscribe to that thesis
myself, but I would like to see it better aruged.)

Of course, I could be quite wrong, that there are no genetic group
differences as far a qualities of temperament do (whether stemming from
prehistoric times or the result of selective migrations and other
population changes). Demonstrating this would mean that I would have to
abandon some unproductive hypotheses and chase after new ones. Fine with
me, since hypotheses are only tools to get at the truth about things.

The exciting thing is that the very process by which demonstrating that
group genetic differences are not important would yield extraordinary
information about man and society. We would have, for the first time,
some substantial *quantitative* estimates on the *comparative* roles that
various environmental factors have on shaping human temperaments and
capacities. Nutrition, is it a big thing or a little thing? I once read
an article on prenancy leading to the depletion of iron stores and the
resulting iron deficiency in women in the Middle Ages. This may be more
important than various laws that got passed and are the subject of so
many tomes by historians. Historians would look much harder at the role
of dietary iron if studies that demonstrated that group genetic
differences are unimportant showed that nutrition is an extremely
important factor, even now, in accounting for current group differences
in achievement.

Historians nowadays use science all over the place, in addition to the
traditional analyses of war, politics, and the production by
intellectuals. They would be able to use the results of any investigation
into the genetic factors in group differences in achievement, regardless
of what the investigations come up with.

So I have an additional “agenda” in mind for this thread, namely to use
scientific results to make better sense of human history.

From [email protected] Sun Jan 21 09:19:36 PST 1996
Article: 27790 of alt.conspiracy
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From: [email protected] (frank forman)
Subject: Re: Peikoff on militias
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Billy Beck ([email protected]) wrote:
: [email protected] (Tim Starr) wrote:

: Again, in re: the Whiskey Rebels:

: >They never tried to overthrow the Federal government, nor did they harass
: >any Federal officials not connected with the excise tax.

: That’s correct, but it did not matter to Washington. The reason is
: that the government can never tolerate resistence. Resist but one
: small facet of state, and the challenge is *general* to the very
: *existence* of the state.

: This is why cops of every stripe always back each other, no matter
: what.

Just a friendly note: according to James Slaughter’s great book, _The
Whiskey Rebellion_, farmers in the west regularly tarred and feathered
the federal revenooers, so much so that the feds stopped trying to
collect the whiskey tax. It was only in western Pennsylvania that the
farmers made a *principled* stand against the tax (the ground was that
internal taxes were unconstitutional, an idea going back to the Glorious
Revolution more than a century before in England) that Washington and
Hamilton had to ditch all the freedom rhetoric they espoused just a few
years before and crack down on the rebels.

I recommend Slaughter’s book, whose subtitle is someth8ing lke Frontier
Epilogue to the American Revolution, to all.

Frank

From [email protected] Sun Jan 21 09:39:29 PST 1996
Article: 22790 of alt.activism
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From: [email protected] (frank forman)
Subject: Re: Peikoff on militias
Message-ID:
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alt.conspiracy:27790 misc.taxes:23569 misc.legal:8971 alt.philosophy.objectivism:58841

Billy Beck ([email protected]) wrote:
: [email protected] (Tim Starr) wrote:

: Again, in re: the Whiskey Rebels:

: >They never tried to overthrow the Federal government, nor did they harass
: >any Federal officials not connected with the excise tax.

: That’s correct, but it did not matter to Washington. The reason is
: that the government can never tolerate resistence. Resist but one
: small facet of state, and the challenge is *general* to the very
: *existence* of the state.

: This is why cops of every stripe always back each other, no matter
: what.

Just a friendly note: according to James Slaughter’s great book, _The
Whiskey Rebellion_, farmers in the west regularly tarred and feathered
the federal revenooers, so much so that the feds stopped trying to
collect the whiskey tax. It was only in western Pennsylvania that the
farmers made a *principled* stand against the tax (the ground was that
internal taxes were unconstitutional, an idea going back to the Glorious
Revolution more than a century before in England) that Washington and
Hamilton had to ditch all the freedom rhetoric they espoused just a few
years before and crack down on the rebels.

I recommend Slaughter’s book, whose subtitle is someth8ing lke Frontier
Epilogue to the American Revolution, to all.

Frank

From [email protected] Sun Jan 21 10:01:18 PST 1996
Article: 316438 of talk.politics.misc
Newsgroups: alt.politics.usa.constitution,alt.activism,alt.politics.usa.misc,alt.society.civil-disob
talk.politics.misc,alt.politics.reform,alt.politics.usa.congress,alt.conspiracy,misc.taxes,misc.legal,
alt.philosophy.objectivism
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From: [email protected] (frank forman)
Subject: Re: Peikoff on militias
Message-ID:
Followup-To: alt.politics.usa.constitution,alt.activism,alt.politics.usa.misc,alt.society.civil-disob,
talk.politics.misc,alt.politics.reform,alt.politics.usa.congress,alt.conspiracy,misc.taxes,misc.legal,
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alt.conspiracy:27790 misc.taxes:23569 misc.legal:8971 alt.philosophy.objectivism:58841

Billy Beck ([email protected]) wrote:
: [email protected] (Tim Starr) wrote:

: Again, in re: the Whiskey Rebels:

: >They never tried to overthrow the Federal government, nor did they harass
: >any Federal officials not connected with the excise tax.

: That’s correct, but it did not matter to Washington. The reason is
: that the government can never tolerate resistence. Resist but one
: small facet of state, and the challenge is *general* to the very
: *existence* of the state.

: This is why cops of every stripe always back each other, no matter
: what.

Just a friendly note: according to James Slaughter’s great book, _The
Whiskey Rebellion_, farmers in the west regularly tarred and feathered
the federal revenooers, so much so that the feds stopped trying to
collect the whiskey tax. It was only in western Pennsylvania that the
farmers made a *principled* stand against the tax (the ground was that
internal taxes were unconstitutional, an idea going back to the Glorious
Revolution more than a century before in England) that Washington and
Hamilton had to ditch all the freedom rhetoric they espoused just a few
years before and crack down on the rebels.

I recommend Slaughter’s book, whose subtitle is someth8ing lke Frontier
Epilogue to the American Revolution, to all.

Frank

From [email protected] Sat Jan 27 21:35:32 PST 1996
Article: 12392 of alt.politics.nationalism.white
Newsgroups: alt.philosophy.objectivism,sci.philosophy.meta,sci.anthropology,talk.politics.theory,
soc.culture.intercultural,alt.politics.reform,alt.politics.democrats.d,alt.activism,alt.discrimination,
alt.politics.nationalism.white
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From: f[email protected] (frank forman)
Subject: Re: (fwd) Re: Evidence FOR Racial Equality??
Message-ID:
Followup-To: alt.philosophy.objectivism,sci.philosophy.meta,sci.anthropology,talk.politics.theory,
soc.culture.intercultural,alt.politics.reform,alt.politics.democrats.d,alt.activism,alt.discrimination,
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alt.discrimination:41914 alt.politics.nationalism.white:12392

Please help me with this whoole thread by telling me what it is that
those who support various government programs like affirmative action
believe in with respect to hereidty vs. environoment (and let us not
forget) vs. free will.

Frank

[your post unchanged below, for reference]

R. Spencer ([email protected]) wrote: : *** EMBEDDED CROSS-POSTING ***

: Mr. Foreman: I read your posting closely enough. The reason I continue
: to object to your project is that, in my opinion, it is fundamentally
: flawed at its base. You ask for evidence of racial equality, but then
: say that you aren’t interested in talking about the existence of race.
: You can’t do this legitimately. The acceptance of race is a given in
: your project, but it is hardly a given in the field. In fact, as I’ve
: pointed out, the burden of proof is your responsibility. Yes, I’ve read
: your posts–but I can see that it is philosophically unsound for you to
: make assertions about the intellectual capacities of racial groups when
: the existence of those groups is challenged in a very strong way by
: people in this group…people whose arguments you refuse to respond to.
: The argument for race is a prerequisite in your endeavor, and you can’t
: get by it by saying you aren’t talking about biological race–because you
: are.

: As I said before, you are demanding evidence that ghosts wear clothes,
: while saying that you are not interesting in discussing the existence of
: ghosts.

: Rainier Spencer

 

From [email protected] Sun Jan 28 09:34:41 PST 1996
Article: 24215 of alt.activism
Newsgroups: alt.philosophy.objectivism,sci.philosophy.meta,sci.anthropology,talk.politics.theory,
soc.culture.intercultural,alt.politics.reform,alt.politics.democrats.d,alt.activism,alt.discrimination,
alt.politics.nationalism.white
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From: [email protected] (frank forman)
Subject: Re: (fwd) Re: Evidence FOR Racial Equality??
Message-ID:
Followup-To: alt.philosophy.objectivism,sci.philosophy.meta,sci.anthropology,talk.politics.theory,
soc.culture.intercultural,alt.politics.reform,alt.politics.democrats.d,alt.activism,alt.discrimination
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talk.politics.theory:55252 alt.politics.reform:48237 alt.politics.democrats.d:49157 alt.activism:24215
alt.discrimination:41914 alt.politics.nationalism.white:12392

Please help me with this whoole thread by telling me what it is that
those who support various government programs like affirmative action
believe in with respect to hereidty vs. environoment (and let us not
forget) vs. free will.

Frank

[your post unchanged below, for reference]

R. Spencer ([email protected]) wrote: : *** EMBEDDED CROSS-POSTING ***

: Mr. Foreman: I read your posting closely enough. The reason I continue
: to object to your project is that, in my opinion, it is fundamentally
: flawed at its base. You ask for evidence of racial equality, but then
: say that you aren’t interested in talking about the existence of race.
: You can’t do this legitimately. The acceptance of race is a given in
: your project, but it is hardly a given in the field. In fact, as I’ve
: pointed out, the burden of proof is your responsibility. Yes, I’ve read
: your posts–but I can see that it is philosophically unsound for you to
: make assertions about the intellectual capacities of racial groups when
: the existence of those groups is challenged in a very strong way by
: people in this group…people whose arguments you refuse to respond to.
: The argument for race is a prerequisite in your endeavor, and you can’t
: get by it by saying you aren’t talking about biological race–because you
: are.

: As I said before, you are demanding evidence that ghosts wear clothes,
: while saying that you are not interesting in discussing the existence of
: ghosts.

: Rainier Spencer

 

From [email protected] Mon Jan 29 09:16:09 PST 1996
Article: 12666 of alt.politics.nationalism.white
Newsgroups: alt.philosophy.objectivism,sci.philosophy.meta,sci.anthropology,talk.politics.theory,
soc.culture.intercultural,alt.politics.reform,alt.politics.democrats.d,alt.activism,alt.discrimination,
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From: [email protected] (frank forman)
Subject: Re: Evidence FOR Racial Equality??
Message-ID:
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Finally, we may make a reference to the
*anthropological* side of the problem. When we
find again and again that, even in departments
of life apparently mutually independent, certain
types of rationalizations have developed in the
Occident, and only there, it would be natural to
suspect that the most important reason lay in
heredity. The author admits that he is inclined
to think the importance of heredity is very
great. But in spite of the notable achievements
of anthropological research, I see up to the
present no way of exactly or even approximately
measuring either the extent or, above all, the
form of its influence on the development
investigated here. It must be one of the tasks
of sociological and historical investigation
first to analyze all the influences and causal
relationships which can satisfactorily be
explained in terms of reactions to environmental
conditions. Only then, and when comparative
racial neurology and psychology shall have
progressed beyond their present and in many ways
very promising beginnings, can we hope for even
the probability of a satisfactory answer to that
problem.^ In the meantime that condition seems
to me not to exist, and an appeal to heredity
would therefore involve a premature renunciation
of the possibility of knowledge attainable now,
and would shift the problem to factors (at
present) still unknown.
^[Some years ago an eminent psychiatrist
expressed the same opinion to me.]

Max Weber, _The Protestant Ethic and the Spirit
of Capitalism_ (1904/5, translated by Talcott
Parsons), last paragraph of Weber’s
Introduction.

Alas, I finally found my copy of the book, on
Shelf 5 of Bookcase 3 (out of 13 in the
apartment). Weber might say the same thing
today, except that the mechanisms of heredity
are more complex that he had imagined them
ninety years ago. On the other hand, statistical
tools are much more powerful now. Also, our
understanding of the *interaction* between
heredity and environment is much better.

Is everybody calmer now and their sense of humor
about the human comedy restored? Kaa’s certainly
is, since she brings up the grim topic of the
Black Death.

Thanks for challenging me to do a Web search for
biology and topology. Yahoo gave me 505 answers,
though some of these are not appropriate, e.g.,
a college catalog that lists both biology and
topology courses. The search engine just looks
through the text and if the two words appear
somewhere in it, it gets counted.

But in most cases, the items were about
biologists using topological methods. I don’t
think I explained what topology is really all
about, as I just gave the definition. Topology
is the study of the things that stay the same
under topological transformations, called
homeomorphisms (one-to-one functions that are
continuous in both directions). In practical
terms, this means “rubber sheet geometry,” to
use the chapter title of an old but still useful
lay book by James R. Newman, _Mathematics and
the Imagination_. You can stretch the thing,
bend it, pull it, and do anything but tear it or
cement it. This is why “a topologist cannot
distinguish a doughnut from a coffee cup,” since
one can be continuously transformed into the
other and back.

In contrast, (ordinary) geometry studies only
*distance-preserving* transformations, these
being translation, rotation, and reflection.
Apply these in any order to a triangle, and the
transformed triangle is congruent (the term we
used in high school) to the original one.

It’s interesting to know that Euclid’s axioms
failed to mention so simple an idea as the
inside and outside of a figure. He just took it
for granted. In geometry class, we were
*supposed* to use only the axioms and previously
proven theorems and *never* the diagrams, but in
practice we did so unawares. It’s possible to
prove some extremely counterintuitive results
with badly drawn diagrams, and it took until the
nineteenth century for mathematicians to see
where the real problem lay. So new axioms,
seemingly trivial ones like “If B lies between A
and C, then B lies between C and A” (as well as
the undefined term “betweenness” itself) had to
be added. I am not sure whether David Hilbert
(as great in mathematics as Max Weber is in
sociology) was the first to formulate them, but
his book, translated as _Foundations of
Geometry_ is still in print (or at least was in
print not too long ago) and is one of my many
books called _Foundations of…_. One very
simple theorem that is extremely difficult is
the Jordan [French, pronounced something like
Zhor-DAH] curve theorem, which says that any
simple closed curve (a circle stretched out of
shape topologically) divides the plane into an
inside and an outside.

Now biology is very much concerned with forms
that stay the same under topological
transformations, like growth. Just who was the
first topologist to get involved in biology, I
do not know, and D’Arcy Thompson’s classic book,
_On Growth and Form_ (1917), could not have used
topology, since there wasn’t very much of it
back then. But by 1971, topology was widely used
in biology, as witnessed by _Mathematical
Taxonomy_, which I referred to earlier.

I think it was Rene Thom’s _Structural Stability
and Morphogenesis_ (English translation, 1975)
that is the first widely-read classic in the
field. And, there are most of the 505 items the
Yahoo search listed.

“Plato’s Academy allegedly bore a sign over the
entrance forbidding those ignorant of geometry
to enter; [Mario] Bunge’s academy would replace
geometry with topology…. Instead, I shall [in
what follows in this chapter on Bunge] sneak
past the sign about topology and try to sketch
is central arguments in nontechnical language
and offer justifications for them.” That’s me on
p.56f in _The Metaphysics of Liberty_.

I also won’t insist that Kaa, or anyone else,
take courses in topology before continuing to
participate in this thread, but I would urge a
certain calmness before making pronouncements on
it and on its use by biologists.

Kaa also asked me whether I knew what randomness
means. The answer is that no one does, really.
There are only certain *tests* of randomness
that will reject a given sequence of numbers as
not being random. It may have too many zeros
than chance would predict, for example.
Practical mathematicians and scientists have
devised a whole bunch of these tests, and
sequences that pass all the tests are called
“pseudo-random.” There is no agreed-upon set of
these tests, applicable to all situations,
however, and indeed the problem is that an
extremely large number of tests can be devised,
some powers of powers of powers of the number of
digits in any given sequence.

Now, if the sequence is generated by an
algorithm (as opposed to some physical device,
like decaying atomic particles), the sequence
flunks one very basic test, namely that of the
algorithm itself. Now some philosophers of
mathematics have proposed that a sequence is
random if the algorithm takes more letters to
describe than the sequence itself. This has
sparked off a long debate that shows no sign of
stopping [[LIKE THE DEBATE EQUALITY HERE??-The
Internet Monster]].

Tying these two things (biology and randomness)
together, probability theory became a branch of
topology with the publication of “Foundations of
Probability Theory” (in German in 1933) by the
great Andrei Nikolayevich Kolmogorov (1903-87)
(not as great as Hilbert or Weber, though, but a
man who published in several areas of
mathematics).

Enough! I will go find the Nisbet review of _The
Bell Curve_ that Warren Sarle quoted from and
ask whether there is more than just a
*suggestion* that there may be no hereditary
differences between whites and blacks in the
United States.

And I thank Marco Simons for his explanation of
what the null hypothesis is all about. Were that
it were applicable in this case! The hidden
assumption is that it is clear whether the null
hypothesis is refuted or not. So, I could claim
that the null hypothesis of population
differences in innate intelligence has been
handsomely refuted by Jensen, Shockley, Rushton,
and several others and that any *reasonable* man
would accept the reasoning of Jensen & Co. as
being, for now (as always), decisive.

Obviously, Marco does not accept this, and
neither do many others on these various
Newsgroups. I could demand that Marco tell me
what he *would* accept as persuasive evidence
and he might just bounce back, “convincing
studies.” Convincing to him, that is. But there
already *are* convincing studies out there.
(Convincing to me, say.) No, I’m not attacking
Marco here at all, and it has bothered me for
many years that, as I devout atheist, I might
not accept any evidence for the existence of
god. I ran a thread on
alt.philosophy.objectivism called, “Me Give Up
My Atheism?” It got several not very satisfying
answers, but I let the thread die before giving
my own. I promise to let everyone know sometime
in the future. Hint: go read “Multiscaling
Properties of Large-Scale Structure in the
Universe,” _Science_, 1995 September 1. My null
hypothesis was *not* refuted. SO THERE, NO-GOD!!

As far as James White goes, it just doesn’t look
like he is ever going to calm down, and I’m
really not sure what I should do. The issue is
not my own motives but what the beliefs of
certain egalitarians are and what evidence they
have for their beliefs. As I said before, he
makes a six-figure income and must be a very
busy man; hopefully (for us) if this situation
changes, he may give us some calmer and more
extended discussions.

And finally I thank David Saab, not just for the
book recommendations (hopefully now on their way
>from Interlibrary Loan),^ but for his pointing
out that other cultures are not nearly so
egalitarian as ours. It was in an article in
_Critical Review_ some years ago that I read
that the United States supports *egalitarian*
individualism, while Germany (or was it just
Nietzsche) supports *heroic* individualism. The
former is quite consonant with Objectivism and
another other belief set that supports laissez-
faire capitalism and what used to be described
as *rugged* individualism. At most only the
civil rights laws of the Reconstructionist
Period (giving freedmen the right to engage in
civil contracts) would be applicable and not any
laws abridging freedom of contract, such as
those governing “public” accommodations in the
Civil Rights Act of 1964, nor a fortiori any
further anti-discrimination or affirmative
action laws or anything at all regarding
“equality of results.” There are not many who
want everyone to have the same incomes, it is
true, but there are those egalitarians who think
that a *just* society will only have been
achieved after blacks and whites have the same
average money incomes. Now, for this last belief
to go through, an assumption has to be made that
these two biological groups (I say nothing about
any taxonomic issues here, merely to point out
that blacks tend to marry blacks and whites
whites. Question: are races the *products* of
human history, some actual physical thing, as
opposed to a scheme of classification, which is
mental?) have different incomes due not at all
to differences in heredity but to differences in
environment (and differences in free will; start
a thread on this, if you wish, but please not
here).
^[Kaa was once involved in a discussion on
the War of Northern Aggression [[YOU REALLY DO
HAVE BIASES!!]] when someone told her that she
read only Yankee books, whereupon Kaa replied
that she wanted the titles of books from the
Southern viewpoint and would get them from
Interlibrary Loan. Kaa, you just don’t get it:
being Southern is a matter of spirit, not a
matter of books. See what I mean about different
discourses now?]

I’m just asking about this assumption about
equal innate capacities, and if anyone here
makes it to a) try to clarify it and b) try to
present evidence in its support. I note only
that the assumption could still be true (I think
it is widespread among libertarians) but not
justify infringements on property rights. That’s
another matter, as is the question of how Mr.
Jefferson’s statement about it being self-
evident that all men endowed by their Creator
with certain unalienable rights became
transmogrified into some other concept of
equality. And Douglas Rae, et alia, _Equalities_
speaks of 120 major kinds, with 720 minor kinds,
not to say of gradations in between. Maybe I’d
better stick to trying to define randomness.

Frank

 

From [email protected] Mon Jan 29 13:22:34 PST 1996
Article: 24736 of alt.activism
Newsgroups: alt.philosophy.objectivism,sci.philosophy.meta,sci.anthropology,talk.politics.theory,
soc.culture.intercultural,alt.politics.reform,alt.politics.democrats.d,alt.activism,alt.discrimination,
alt.politics.nationalism.white
Path: nizkor.almanac.bc.ca!news.island.net!news.bctel.net!news.cyberstore.ca!math.ohio-state.edu!
howland.reston.ans.net!ix.netcom.com!netcom.com!forman
From: [email protected] (frank forman)
Subject: Re: Evidence FOR Racial Equality??
Message-ID:
Followup-To: alt.philosophy.objectivism,sci.philosophy.meta,sci.anthropology,talk.politics.theory,
soc.culture.intercultural,alt.politics.reform,alt.politics.democrats.d,alt.activism,alt.discrimination,
alt.politics.nationalism.white
Organization: NETCOM On-line Communication Services (408 261-4700 guest)
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Xref: nizkor.almanac.bc.ca alt.philosophy.objectivism:59504 sci.philosophy.meta:15616 sci.anthropology:436
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alt.discrimination:42101 alt.politics.nationalism.white:12666

Finally, we may make a reference to the
*anthropological* side of the problem. When we
find again and again that, even in departments
of life apparently mutually independent, certain
types of rationalizations have developed in the
Occident, and only there, it would be natural to
suspect that the most important reason lay in
heredity. The author admits that he is inclined
to think the importance of heredity is very
great. But in spite of the notable achievements
of anthropological research, I see up to the
present no way of exactly or even approximately
measuring either the extent or, above all, the
form of its influence on the development
investigated here. It must be one of the tasks
of sociological and historical investigation
first to analyze all the influences and causal
relationships which can satisfactorily be
explained in terms of reactions to environmental
conditions. Only then, and when comparative
racial neurology and psychology shall have
progressed beyond their present and in many ways
very promising beginnings, can we hope for even
the probability of a satisfactory answer to that
problem.^ In the meantime that condition seems
to me not to exist, and an appeal to heredity
would therefore involve a premature renunciation
of the possibility of knowledge attainable now,
and would shift the problem to factors (at
present) still unknown.
^[Some years ago an eminent psychiatrist
expressed the same opinion to me.]

Max Weber, _The Protestant Ethic and the Spirit
of Capitalism_ (1904/5, translated by Talcott
Parsons), last paragraph of Weber’s
Introduction.

Alas, I finally found my copy of the book, on
Shelf 5 of Bookcase 3 (out of 13 in the
apartment). Weber might say the same thing
today, except that the mechanisms of heredity
are more complex that he had imagined them
ninety years ago. On the other hand, statistical
tools are much more powerful now. Also, our
understanding of the *interaction* between
heredity and environment is much better.

Is everybody calmer now and their sense of humor
about the human comedy restored? Kaa’s certainly
is, since she brings up the grim topic of the
Black Death.

Thanks for challenging me to do a Web search for
biology and topology. Yahoo gave me 505 answers,
though some of these are not appropriate, e.g.,
a college catalog that lists both biology and
topology courses. The search engine just looks
through the text and if the two words appear
somewhere in it, it gets counted.

But in most cases, the items were about
biologists using topological methods. I don’t
think I explained what topology is really all
about, as I just gave the definition. Topology
is the study of the things that stay the same
under topological transformations, called
homeomorphisms (one-to-one functions that are
continuous in both directions). In practical
terms, this means “rubber sheet geometry,” to
use the chapter title of an old but still useful
lay book by James R. Newman, _Mathematics and
the Imagination_. You can stretch the thing,
bend it, pull it, and do anything but tear it or
cement it. This is why “a topologist cannot
distinguish a doughnut from a coffee cup,” since
one can be continuously transformed into the
other and back.

In contrast, (ordinary) geometry studies only
*distance-preserving* transformations, these
being translation, rotation, and reflection.
Apply these in any order to a triangle, and the
transformed triangle is congruent (the term we
used in high school) to the original one.

It’s interesting to know that Euclid’s axioms
failed to mention so simple an idea as the
inside and outside of a figure. He just took it
for granted. In geometry class, we were
*supposed* to use only the axioms and previously
proven theorems and *never* the diagrams, but in
practice we did so unawares. It’s possible to
prove some extremely counterintuitive results
with badly drawn diagrams, and it took until the
nineteenth century for mathematicians to see
where the real problem lay. So new axioms,
seemingly trivial ones like “If B lies between A
and C, then B lies between C and A” (as well as
the undefined term “betweenness” itself) had to
be added. I am not sure whether David Hilbert
(as great in mathematics as Max Weber is in
sociology) was the first to formulate them, but
his book, translated as _Foundations of
Geometry_ is still in print (or at least was in
print not too long ago) and is one of my many
books called _Foundations of…_. One very
simple theorem that is extremely difficult is
the Jordan [French, pronounced something like
Zhor-DAH] curve theorem, which says that any
simple closed curve (a circle stretched out of
shape topologically) divides the plane into an
inside and an outside.

Now biology is very much concerned with forms
that stay the same under topological
transformations, like growth. Just who was the
first topologist to get involved in biology, I
do not know, and D’Arcy Thompson’s classic book,
_On Growth and Form_ (1917), could not have used
topology, since there wasn’t very much of it
back then. But by 1971, topology was widely used
in biology, as witnessed by _Mathematical
Taxonomy_, which I referred to earlier.

I think it was Rene Thom’s _Structural Stability
and Morphogenesis_ (English translation, 1975)
that is the first widely-read classic in the
field. And, there are most of the 505 items the
Yahoo search listed.

“Plato’s Academy allegedly bore a sign over the
entrance forbidding those ignorant of geometry
to enter; [Mario] Bunge’s academy would replace
geometry with topology…. Instead, I shall [in
what follows in this chapter on Bunge] sneak
past the sign about topology and try to sketch
is central arguments in nontechnical language
and offer justifications for them.” That’s me on
p.56f in _The Metaphysics of Liberty_.

I also won’t insist that Kaa, or anyone else,
take courses in topology before continuing to
participate in this thread, but I would urge a
certain calmness before making pronouncements on
it and on its use by biologists.

Kaa also asked me whether I knew what randomness
means. The answer is that no one does, really.
There are only certain *tests* of randomness
that will reject a given sequence of numbers as
not being random. It may have too many zeros
than chance would predict, for example.
Practical mathematicians and scientists have
devised a whole bunch of these tests, and
sequences that pass all the tests are called
“pseudo-random.” There is no agreed-upon set of
these tests, applicable to all situations,
however, and indeed the problem is that an
extremely large number of tests can be devised,
some powers of powers of powers of the number of
digits in any given sequence.

Now, if the sequence is generated by an
algorithm (as opposed to some physical device,
like decaying atomic particles), the sequence
flunks one very basic test, namely that of the
algorithm itself. Now some philosophers of
mathematics have proposed that a sequence is
random if the algorithm takes more letters to
describe than the sequence itself. This has
sparked off a long debate that shows no sign of
stopping [[LIKE THE DEBATE EQUALITY HERE??-The
Internet Monster]].

Tying these two things (biology and randomness)
together, probability theory became a branch of
topology with the publication of “Foundations of
Probability Theory” (in German in 1933) by the
great Andrei Nikolayevich Kolmogorov (1903-87)
(not as great as Hilbert or Weber, though, but a
man who published in several areas of
mathematics).

Enough! I will go find the Nisbet review of _The
Bell Curve_ that Warren Sarle quoted from and
ask whether there is more than just a
*suggestion* that there may be no hereditary
differences between whites and blacks in the
United States.

And I thank Marco Simons for his explanation of
what the null hypothesis is all about. Were that
it were applicable in this case! The hidden
assumption is that it is clear whether the null
hypothesis is refuted or not. So, I could claim
that the null hypothesis of population
differences in innate intelligence has been
handsomely refuted by Jensen, Shockley, Rushton,
and several others and that any *reasonable* man
would accept the reasoning of Jensen & Co. as
being, for now (as always), decisive.

Obviously, Marco does not accept this, and
neither do many others on these various
Newsgroups. I could demand that Marco tell me
what he *would* accept as persuasive evidence
and he might just bounce back, “convincing
studies.” Convincing to him, that is. But there
already *are* convincing studies out there.
(Convincing to me, say.) No, I’m not attacking
Marco here at all, and it has bothered me for
many years that, as I devout atheist, I might
not accept any evidence for the existence of
god. I ran a thread on
alt.philosophy.objectivism called, “Me Give Up
My Atheism?” It got several not very satisfying
answers, but I let the thread die before giving
my own. I promise to let everyone know sometime
in the future. Hint: go read “Multiscaling
Properties of Large-Scale Structure in the
Universe,” _Science_, 1995 September 1. My null
hypothesis was *not* refuted. SO THERE, NO-GOD!!

As far as James White goes, it just doesn’t look
like he is ever going to calm down, and I’m
really not sure what I should do. The issue is
not my own motives but what the beliefs of
certain egalitarians are and what evidence they
have for their beliefs. As I said before, he
makes a six-figure income and must be a very
busy man; hopefully (for us) if this situation
changes, he may give us some calmer and more
extended discussions.

And finally I thank David Saab, not just for the
book recommendations (hopefully now on their way
>from Interlibrary Loan),^ but for his pointing
out that other cultures are not nearly so
egalitarian as ours. It was in an article in
_Critical Review_ some years ago that I read
that the United States supports *egalitarian*
individualism, while Germany (or was it just
Nietzsche) supports *heroic* individualism. The
former is quite consonant with Objectivism and
another other belief set that supports laissez-
faire capitalism and what used to be described
as *rugged* individualism. At most only the
civil rights laws of the Reconstructionist
Period (giving freedmen the right to engage in
civil contracts) would be applicable and not any
laws abridging freedom of contract, such as
those governing “public” accommodations in the
Civil Rights Act of 1964, nor a fortiori any
further anti-discrimination or affirmative
action laws or anything at all regarding
“equality of results.” There are not many who
want everyone to have the same incomes, it is
true, but there are those egalitarians who think
that a *just* society will only have been
achieved after blacks and whites have the same
average money incomes. Now, for this last belief
to go through, an assumption has to be made that
these two biological groups (I say nothing about
any taxonomic issues here, merely to point out
that blacks tend to marry blacks and whites
whites. Question: are races the *products* of
human history, some actual physical thing, as
opposed to a scheme of classification, which is
mental?) have different incomes due not at all
to differences in heredity but to differences in
environment (and differences in free will; start
a thread on this, if you wish, but please not
here).
^[Kaa was once involved in a discussion on
the War of Northern Aggression [[YOU REALLY DO
HAVE BIASES!!]] when someone told her that she
read only Yankee books, whereupon Kaa replied
that she wanted the titles of books from the
Southern viewpoint and would get them from
Interlibrary Loan. Kaa, you just don’t get it:
being Southern is a matter of spirit, not a
matter of books. See what I mean about different
discourses now?]

I’m just asking about this assumption about
equal innate capacities, and if anyone here
makes it to a) try to clarify it and b) try to
present evidence in its support. I note only
that the assumption could still be true (I think
it is widespread among libertarians) but not
justify infringements on property rights. That’s
another matter, as is the question of how Mr.
Jefferson’s statement about it being self-
evident that all men endowed by their Creator
with certain unalienable rights became
transmogrified into some other concept of
equality. And Douglas Rae, et alia, _Equalities_
speaks of 120 major kinds, with 720 minor kinds,
not to say of gradations in between. Maybe I’d
better stick to trying to define randomness.

Frank

 

From [email protected] Mon Jan 29 20:08:38 PST 1996
Article: 12761 of alt.politics.nationalism.white
Newsgroups: alt.philosophy.objectivism,sci.philosophy.meta,sci.anthropology,talk.politics.theory,
soc.culture.intercultural,alt.politics.reform,alt.politics.democrats.d,alt.activism,alt.discrimination,
alt.politics.nationalism.white
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From: [email protected] (frank forman)
Subject: Re: Evidence FOR Racial Equality??
Message-ID:
Followup-To: alt.philosophy.objectivism,sci.philosophy.meta,sci.anthropology,talk.politics.theory,
soc.culture.intercultural,alt.politics.reform,alt.politics.democrats.d,alt.activism,alt.discrimination,
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alt.discrimination:42161 alt.politics.nationalism.white:12761

You ask for my own understanding of what equality means. I’m afraid my
thinking is quite unsettled and freely admit so. It’s quite an elusive
concept, and many, many minds have toiled over it. Sames goes for lots
and lots of other concepts, like race and intelligence on this thread.
What I am after here is get those egalitarians who want to have laws
beyond those that simply state that citizens will all be subjected to the
same laws (such as those limiting freedom of contract if
discrimination–another poorly defined term–and affirmative action)
believe in with respect to the nature-nurture controversy *and* what is
the evidence for their beliefs.

In other words, I’d like an open-ended discussion. Let’s get the evidence
first and later figure out what it means with respect to the notion of
equality. Of course, I can’t confine what Netters will do anyhow, even if
I hope that we will keep personalities out of this.

Frank

[your post uncchanged below for reference]

Darren Bostock ([email protected]rup.com.au) wrote:
: [Much edited….]

: >I invite you, or anyone else, to flesh it out. It seems, esp. now from
: >what Kaa says about the Human Genome Project, that this fleshing out, if
: >it ever comes, will not be forthcoming anytime soon. So if there are
: >other positive arguments *for* equality, I’d very much like to hear them.

: Do unto others as you would have done unto you…..

: I did not see your original post so I will make the assumption that you were
: inviting speculation about what people believed to be their justification/
: belief/adherence of equality between racial groups of humans. I apologise if
: I have made an incorrect assumption.

: I believe that equality is a concept that humans use to establish their position
: in society. I also believe that each person’s concept of equality is determined
: by factors that they percieve as being important or relevant to decision. As such,
: I also believe that differences will not always mean inequality. I am therefore
: drawn towards the conclusion that one’s concept of equality is subjective to
: the situation and interpretation of the information available.

: With this in mind, what do you mean by equality or inequality? What context?
: What area of life or race or humans in general are you wishing to discuss?
: What factors are you drawing from to develop your thoughts about equality or
: the validity of equality?

: >And if you think I am bad, wicked, evil, or all three, I’m sure the rest
: >of us would like to hear what you, or anyone else, can come up with.

: Not at all. If more people were prepared to discuss their thoughts, be they
: right or wrong, then the world would probaly become a lot smarter.

: —
: Regards,

: Darren Bostock (Email :- [email protected])
: ‘…… I’d swear to God, If God would let me swear……’

 

From [email protected] Tue Jan 30 15:31:29 PST 1996
Article: 24884 of alt.activism
Newsgroups: alt.philosophy.objectivism,sci.philosophy.meta,sci.anthropology,talk.politics.theory,
soc.culture.intercultural,alt.politics.reform,alt.politics.democrats.d,alt.activism,alt.discrimination,
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From: [email protected] (frank forman)
Subject: Re: Evidence FOR Racial Equality??
Message-ID:
Followup-To: alt.philosophy.objectivism,sci.philosophy.meta,sci.anthropology,talk.politics.theory,
soc.culture.intercultural,alt.politics.reform,alt.politics.democrats.d,alt.activism,alt.discrimination,
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alt.discrimination:42161 alt.politics.nationalism.white:12761

You ask for my own understanding of what equality means. I’m afraid my
thinking is quite unsettled and freely admit so. It’s quite an elusive
concept, and many, many minds have toiled over it. Sames goes for lots
and lots of other concepts, like race and intelligence on this thread.
What I am after here is get those egalitarians who want to have laws
beyond those that simply state that citizens will all be subjected to the
same laws (such as those limiting freedom of contract if
discrimination–another poorly defined term–and affirmative action)
believe in with respect to the nature-nurture controversy *and* what is
the evidence for their beliefs.

In other words, I’d like an open-ended discussion. Let’s get the evidence
first and later figure out what it means with respect to the notion of
equality. Of course, I can’t confine what Netters will do anyhow, even if
I hope that we will keep personalities out of this.

Frank

[your post uncchanged below for reference]

Darren Bostock ([email protected]) wrote:
: [Much edited….]

: >I invite you, or anyone else, to flesh it out. It seems, esp. now from
: >what Kaa says about the Human Genome Project, that this fleshing out, if
: >it ever comes, will not be forthcoming anytime soon. So if there are
: >other positive arguments *for* equality, I’d very much like to hear them.

: Do unto others as you would have done unto you…..

: I did not see your original post so I will make the assumption that you were
: inviting speculation about what people believed to be their justification/
: belief/adherence of equality between racial groups of humans. I apologise if
: I have made an incorrect assumption.

: I believe that equality is a concept that humans use to establish their position
: in society. I also believe that each person’s concept of equality is determined
: by factors that they percieve as being important or relevant to decision. As such,
: I also believe that differences will not always mean inequality. I am therefore
: drawn towards the conclusion that one’s concept of equality is subjective to
: the situation and interpretation of the information available.

: With this in mind, what do you mean by equality or inequality? What context?
: What area of life or race or humans in general are you wishing to discuss?
: What factors are you drawing from to develop your thoughts about equality or
: the validity of equality?

: >And if you think I am bad, wicked, evil, or all three, I’m sure the rest
: >of us would like to hear what you, or anyone else, can come up with.

: Not at all. If more people were prepared to discuss their thoughts, be they
: right or wrong, then the world would probaly become a lot smarter.

: —
: Regards,

: Darren Bostock (Email :- [email protected])
: ‘…… I’d swear to God, If God would let me swear……’

 

From [email protected] Wed Jan 31 22:01:50 PST 1996
Article: 27585 of can.politics
From: [email protected] (DAVID FORMAN)
Subject: RE: Quebec is Divisible – Bouchard
Date: 31 Jan 96 21:38:51 -0800
References: <[email protected]>
Message-ID: <[email protected]>
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So Bouchard says Canada is not a real country. How about it has real
money. I’m for a strong and totally independent, Republic of Quebec.
The sooner the better. But Montreal, which by the way was not built
up solely by Francophones, stays in Canada. Montreal is
multi-cultural and multi-ethnic and that makes it special. Nobody
should allow Montreal to turn into another Quebec City, one is
enough. Divide up Quebec now and stop letting the tail wag the dog.
When is enough, enough? We are all distinct peoples, we are
Canadians.

Canada is bilingual. But don’t position one language against the
other. Bill 101 is a crime against civil rights. Remember WWII, if
not for the English speaking allied troops (and many Canadians),
France would be speaking German by now.

From [email protected] Fri Jan 12 15:43:32 PST 1996
Article: 72429 of alt.politics.correct
Newsgroups: alt.philosophy.objectivism,sci.philosophy.meta,sci.anthropology,talk.politics.theory,
soc.culture.intercultural,soc.couples.intercultural,alt.politics.reform,alt.politics.democrats.d,alt.activism,
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From: [email protected] (frank forman)
Subject: Re: Evidence FOR Racial Equality??
Message-ID:
Followup-To: alt.philosophy.objectivism,sci.philosophy.meta,sci.anthropology,talk.politics.theory,
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