Happy heuristic for the holidays [Polarity Shift #1]

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A good heuristic for deciding how much to trust a claim about some group of humans is to exchange the groups (say with a find:replace command in word) with other groups and see if the change would result in a large swing in public perception. A large change in the perception based on which group is attributed the traits strongly suggests that great caution should be implemented in accepting the claim. As white males are typically the most egregiously attacked group, they are a good choice for replacing another group in any essay which is fawning and/or flattering. To most people the new essay instantly sounds like the work of an evil white supremacist, where the original was merely a positive expression of ethnic, female, or degenerate pride. For any essay that is hostile to the group under discussion, most of which target white males, it is useful to switch to women, Jews, or blacks. Or better yet, make the switch to black, Jewish lesbians to maximize the absurdity. Suddenly, a noble essay meant to combat institutionalized racism, sexism, and anti-semitism becomes a hateful piece of propaganda for white supremacy. If you could expect a polarity shifted essay to be widely and loudly denounced as X-ist, while the original is a triumph for social justice, chances are quite good that you have a big, steaming pile of bullshit on your hands.

Really, to save ourselves time in producing pro-white male, anti-everyone else propaganda, we should just take essays by leftists and use the find:replace function in word. The amount of lolz-worthy propaganda that could be generated in this way is nearly limitless and requires almost no effort since you don’t have to bother writing anything yourself. The triggered/troll’s effort ratio in this process is about as good as you could expect to get in any serious trolling activity. The curve is steep and has a limit of infinity. Perhaps this type of artistic re-imagining of left-wing propaganda will become a semi-regular staple of the blog. I will always be upfront about polarity shifting. However, I could imagine an enterprising troll using such material secretively in order to get leftists to spend huge amounts of effort inadvertently denouncing and debunking their own bullshit. It is win-win on so many levels and is so easy even a child could do it. Propaganda for the common shitlord.

So let’s begin this process with a recently released article by the Washington post titled “Women really are better doctors, study suggests.” Which I will rename “White men really are better doctors, study suggests”

If female doctors were able to do as well as their white male counterparts when treating elderly patients in the hospital, they could save 32,000 lives a year, according to a study of 1.5 million hospital visits.

A month after patients were hospitalized, there was a small but significant difference in the likelihood that they were still alive or had to be readmitted to the hospital depending on the gender of the doctor who cared for them, according to the study published in JAMA Internal Medicine. Although the analysis can’t prove the gender of the physician was the determining factor, the researchers made multiple efforts to rule out other explanations.

“If we had a treatment that lowered mortality by 0.4 percentage points or half a percentage point, that is a treatment we would use widely. We would think of that as a clinically important treatment we want to use for our patients,” said Ashish Jha, professor of health policy at the Harvard School of Public Health. The estimate that 32,000 patients’ lives could be saved in the Medicare population alone is on par with the number of deaths from vehicle crashes each year.

For years, studies have suggested that women and white men practice medicine differently. white men are more likely to adhere to clinical guidelines and counsel patients on preventive care. They are more communicative than women. But whether those differences have a meaningful impact on patients’ well-being has been unclear.

The new study, based on an analysis of four years of Medicare data, found that patients treated by a white male doctor had a little less than half of a percentage point difference in the likelihood they would die within a month of their hospitalization. There was a similar drop in patients having to go back to the hospital over that month. Those are not large differences, but Jha pointed out that major health policies aimed at improving mortality in hospitals and increasing patient safety had resulted in a similar drop in mortality over a decade.

To try to rule out other possible explanations for the difference — such as healthier patients’s preference for white male doctors — the researchers did an analysis where they looked solely at hospitalists, doctors who see patients who are admitted to hospitals and who are typically not chosen by patients. They also made sure patients had similar characteristics in the two groups. They compared doctors within hospitals, to avoid measuring a difference that could be accounted for by comparing a white man who worked at a rural community hospital with a woman who worked at an urban trauma center.

Vineet Arora, an associate professor of medicine at the University of Chicago, praised the research but was cautious to read too much into the main result, pointing out that it was important to remember the effect might stem from multiple factors.

“It could be something the doctor is doing. It could be something about how the patient is reacting to the doctor,” Arora said. “It’s really hard to say. It’s probably multi-factorial.”

What the study drove home for Arora, who works as a hospitalist, is that white men are certainly not worse doctors than women — and they should be compensated equitably. A study published earlier this year found a $20,000 pay gap between female and white male doctors after controlling for other factors, such as age, specialty and faculty rank, that might influence compensation.

She noted that white male doctors, who are often being hired in their horniest years, may face a subtle form of discrimination, in the worry that they will be less committed or that they will not work as hard when they have poon to chase.

“Having a white male physician is an asset,” Arora said.

William Weeks, a professor of psychiatry at Dartmouth’s Geisel School of Medicine, said that the researchers had done a good job of trying to control for other factors that might influence the outcome. He noted that one caveat is that hospital care is usually done by a team. That fact was underscored by the method the researchers used to identify the doctor who led the care for patients in the study. To identify the gender of the physician, they looked for the doctor responsible for the biggest chunk of billing for hospital services — which was, on average, about half. That means that almost half of the care was provided by others.

Could an editorial written as the above is have been published in the Washington post? Could a research paper with these conclusions have been published in a “respectable” peer-reviewed journal? Absolutely not. The outrage would have been deafening and the authors would very likely lose their jobs or even be assaulted. The opposite finding would have never been published no matter how convincing the evidence. The only conclusion allowed was, is and will be that women are better doctors, and this institutional bias all but guaranteed that we were going to get some bunk study like this released to uncritical fanfare in the media. Polarity shifting this leftist propaganda makes it very salient that we are almost certainly dealing with bullshit here.

Forgetting for a second that an effect size of a half of a percentage point is trivial (it took almost 2 million data points to find this), and that social scientists have basically no credibility when it comes to their statistical practices, lets give these authors the benefit of the doubt and say they found a real effect here. After all, the idea of women being more nurturing does fit with traditional stereotypes and I could conceivably see how that might contribute to slightly extending the life of someone knocking on death’s door.

The problem with using this finding to conclude that women are better doctors is graduating female doctors opt out of their profession at much higher rates than men. This ends up removing roughly 30% of the worst female doctors from circulation and thus prevents them from being factored into the study. This should have a substantial impact on their overall average in studies such as this, and I am honestly surprised they didn’t get a larger effect than they did because of it. Of course, I AM assuming that it is disproportionately the worst doctors who opt-out of practice (there is no data on this), but honestly it is a reasonable assumption. People who are good at something tend to stick with it more. In addition, it doesn’t factor in that male doctors are working on average 5 more hours per week than their female counterparts. Ya, maybe he isn’t as cuddly with his patients, but he is likely seeing more patients per week which translates to providing substantially more care overall. You can quibble over this, but I would argue this increase in quantity of service is more important than a doubtful .5% change in mortality in the terminally ill. Leftists are very eager to latch onto any trivial finding to make a specious argument about how great their favored group is, but it is a huge red flag and very typically misses the larger picture. A picture that is already heavily skewed by decades of feminist infiltration into academia, but nonetheless still paints another picture than the established narrative. And that is assuming the finding itself wasn’t complete nonsense to start with.

The excerpt below from my book Smart and Sexy: The Evolutionary Origins and Biological Underpinnings of Cognitive Differences Between the Sexes provides a more extensive discussion of this. Citations for this section are at the end of the post.

The skilled female labor with the most extreme pattern of opting out is masters of business administration graduates from elite schools. Only 35% of the best, most qualified women who get educated from the highest ranked schools are actually participating in the work force; they are 30 percent more likely to opt out than their peers who went to less selective schools. Though even for those women at less selective schools, it must be noted that a 35% opt-out rate is still very high. Depending on the vocation and education level, the rate of expensively educated women opting out ranges from 20-40% but for most careers the female opt-out rate clusters around 30%. Women with children work even less than this with a range of 40-60% opting out over all professions with most professions having around a 50% opt-out rate.i The female drop out rate is partially due to new mothers deciding not to work to raise children, and it is also partially due to significantly greater earnings by husbands making their income relatively insignificant by comparison.

Perhaps the most important example of female opt-out being problematic is in medical training. Training medical doctors is hugely expensive and they receive the highest degree of taxpayer subsidization. Some of the costs are born by the degree seeker, but the majority of the cost is paid for by the state through taxes on the general population and ranges into the hundreds of thousands of dollars per doctor. The general population consents to this subsidization because they realize that they will need medical doctors to treat them when they become ill. However, prioritizing women in these careers is a poor investment for the tax payer even when they have the cognitive ability to meet the demands of the profession.

Work-time preference differences between genders strongly imply that training men is generally a better investment for society than women at the same level of ability. Especially considering 4 out of 10 female doctors are working less than full time and some of those do not practice at all.233, i Even full time female doctors work on average about 4.5 hours less a week than men. A man who works 50 hours per week, 50 weeks per year, for 40 years would work a total of 100,000 hours. A woman who worked 35 hours a week for the same time frame would only work 70,000 hours. This rough calculation is quite generous in assuming that women working part-time only work 5 hours less than the standard work week and that they do not switch out of their trained profession at an early point for the duration of their working life. However, it is known in practice that many women end up switching out of the profession they were expensively trained in long before they retire.233, 236, ii, iii

These sorts of lifestyle choices are fine when the costs are born by the women who make them, but they are unacceptable when the costs are largely paid by society via wasting tax money on training that goes unused and in terms of shortages of access to medical care due to too few trained doctors practicing. The problem only promises to get worse because of the push to get gender parity in medicine. As of 2010, 30% of practicing doctors were female but almost 50% of new medical school graduates were female. It is estimated that if the trend of female opt-out continues, and there is no reason to think it won’t, there will be up to a 150,000 shortage of doctors in the near future. General practice and pediatrics will most acutely feel the problem since these are the fields women gravitate towards.236 The public will have difficulty gaining access to medical care and costs will rise substantially because of the push of women into medicine.

In addition to a preference for less work hours and a tendency to opt out entirely, working women also call in sick or are otherwise absent at about twice the rate of men.iv For sick leave specifically, women are absent about 50% more often for self-diagnosed sickness and 34% more often for medically certified sick leave.v Some, but not all, of this increased absenteeism can be explained by a greater likelihood for mothers rather than fathers to stay home with sick children. The rest may be due to legitimate increased susceptibility to illness (for example, menstrual pain and hysteria), a degree of semi-hypochondria, or a general lack of tenacity in the face of women’s dislike of working. The later would be consistent with normal female work preferences. There is also some evidence for increased hypochondria; though women more often report ill health than men, it is not reflected by higher mortality rates. Reported ill health is much better correlated with mortality in men.vi Whatever the reasons for these trends, the consequence is that by any measure, women as a population make for less productive and reliable employees than men even when they have similar levels of intellectual ability.

The costs shouldered by businesses forced to hire women to meet diversity quotas is enormous. Though employee turnover has been increasing in recent years for all demographics, the above data makes it clear that women lead the pack. It is estimated that employee turnover will approach 65% in the near future. The median cost of employee turnover is 20% of the employee’s annual salary for positions that pay under 75 thousand dollars annually, but there is a large range of costs and the cost increases drastically for specialized positions that require significant education. Replacing highly paid, specialized positions can cost up to 213% of the lost employee’s annual salary.vii, viii

Studies and articles which address the problem of female opt-out, because of the feminist tendencies of the authors, generally advocate costly female-friendly policies.242, 243, ix In other words, they advocate lower standards for women relative to men and toleration of a greater degree of absenteeism for women. Essentially this means that feminists want the costs and opportunity costs of women’s decisions to be externalized to employers and fellow employees who have to pick up the slack for absent or disengaging women, and vicariously to society who have to deal with less available service agents. The obvious and easiest solution is to simply not have as many women in these positions or restrict them to positions which can tolerate less devotion. This is exactly what our ancestors sensibly did. A company would be better off not having female oriented policies to discourage women from working there and thus maintain a more reliable work force.

i Sibert, K. S. (2011). Don’t quit this day job. New York Times. http://www.nytimes.com/2011/06/12/opinion/12sibert.html?pagewanted=all&_r=0

ii Belkin, L. (2003) The Opt-Out Revolution. New York Times. http://www.nytimes.com/2003/10/26/magazine/26WOMEN.html

iii Kuczynski, A (2002) “They Conquered, They Left.” New York Times. http://www.nytimes.com/2002/03/24/style/they-conquered-they-left.html

iv Tahmincioglu, E. (2007) Female Absenteeism is not just about child care. NBC News. http://www.nbcnews.com/id/21547885/ns/business-careers/t/female-absenteeism-not-just-about-child-care/

v Laaksonen, M., Martikainen, P., Rahkonen, O., Lahelma, E. (2007) Explanations for gender differences in sickness absence: evidence from middle-aged municipal employees from Finland. Occup Environ Med. 65(5):325-30. doi: 10.1136/oem.2007.033910.

vi Young, H., Grundy, E., O’Reilly, D., Boyle, P. (2010) Self-rated health and mortality in the UK: results from the first comparative analysis of the England and Wales, Scotland, and Northern Ireland Longitudinal Studies. Popul Trends. 2010 Spring;(139):11-36. doi: 10.1057/pt.2010.3.

vii Boushey, H., Glynn, S. J. (2012) There Are Significant Business Costs to Replacing Employees. Center for American Progress.

viii Appelbaum, E., Milkman, R. (2006) “Achieving a Work­able Balance: New Jersey Employers’ Experiences Managing Employee Leaves and Turnover” Center for Women and Work. Rutgers.

ix Herry, J. L., Wolframz, C. (2009) Work Environment and \Opt-Out” Rates at Motherhood Across High-Education Career Paths. National Bureau of Economic Research. Working Paper No. 14717

i Hersch, J. (2013) Opting Out among Women with Elite Education. Vanderbilt Law and Economics Research Paper No. 13-05. http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2221482

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Women’s Olympic Soccer Team loses 0-7 playing teenage boys 14 years old (or younger)

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You can read about it here or here.

Honestly, I am not particularly surprised by this outcome. In my soon to be released book on intellectual differences between the sexes (Titled “Smart and Sexy“), I spent a short time evaluating past research on the differences in strength, endurance, and other physical aptitudes such as proneness to injury. Let’s just say that though the intellectual differences are there and substantial, they don’t come close to the physical differences. A lot, but not all, of this research I used in the book was performed by the military in the doomed desire to integrate women into the military. I think they stopped doing it as much, or at least stopped releasing it publicly, once it became clear that they weren’t getting the “right” answers.

I’ll only mention one of the studies here (a non-military one), but suffice it to say all the relevant research comes up with similar stuff. One interesting study was a comparison of hand-grip strength between normal males, normal females, and athletic trained “elite” females. The results of the study showed that the entire distributions of normal males and normal females barely overlapped at all. 90% of the male population was stronger than 95% of the female population. Below is a graph I made for the book that uses data from the study (There is a typo in this image file in the last sentence which is already fixed in the book. This graph doesn’t contain the elite females data set is all it is saying.):

male female grip strength graph

Elite females did better than normal females, but even then only their extreme outliers reached the 50th percentile of the normal male distribution:

men women elite women compare hand grip strength no textThe above pseudo-distributions are divided into population quartiles by the black horizontal lines. In other words, each horizontal zone covers 1/4 of the population. The shape was added just to look nicer for the book and show that it is indeed a distribution.

Elite, athletically trained males were not included at all. Honestly, I think the above provides all the information you really need to know. If elite females do that badly compared to normal males, you can just imagine what a comparison to elite males would show. I am not sure if the authors didn’t bother with this for the above reason, or if they did get the data and decided it would be a little too controversial for their taste.

So that is the kind of things the research tells us. Once that is established you can start considering the anecdotes as being normal or the rule rather than exceptions to be discounted. One of the examples I used in the book was that of the 200th ranked male tennis player who beat the top ranked Williams sisters, while smoking cigarettes and drinking beer right before the match and during the intermission. (Sorry to use a forum post, but that article was the funniest and appears to have been deleted from its original source. A quick google search can find better, and more boring, articles). Not to mention that the Williams sisters were black while Braasch, the male tennis player, was white. As black women, they almost certainly had more testosterone than women of other races but that wasn’t enough.

If this soccer match had happened before getting into the editing and formatting phase of publication I likely would have used it as well. It  is a better example. Males who had barely started puberty blowing out a top ranked adult women’s soccer team is a very difficult anecdote to ignore. 13 and 14 year old boys aren’t anywhere near reaching their physical prime, which won’t be until they reach around the age of 22 or so. We have every reason to believe these kids are going to get a lot better. Currently, Australia’s women’s soccer team is ranked 5th in the world, and is expected to be a serious contender for the gold medal at the next Olympics. Apparently it isn’t the first time this team has lost to boys much younger than themselves (see original links).

At first you might wonder why the people running all this, who are almost certainly progressive, are allowing such blatant proof of crimethink to go ahead. The simple answer is they have no choice. There are no women’s teams available who are at a high enough level to train with. If they want a chance of doing well at the Olympics they have to play against skilled opponents and the only ones available at a satisfactory level (not too high and not too low) are teams comprised of teenage boys. Though obviously even thirteen and fourteen year olds, properly trained and skilled, are more than a match for a top adult women’s team. Maybe they would have better luck if they played against ten year olds.

So what we have is a fair number of publicized examples of female physical inferiority in physical endeavors, not to mention common sense and experience, as well as a fair amount of research confirming that these anecdotes aren’t just stereotypes, misogyny, or whatever else. These are real differences. Yet we are still opening up combat positions for women in the military which will introduce unnecessary extra danger to everyone involved. Life threatening danger. The fact that this stuff is all out there and easily accessible, yet I find my opinion here to be in the minority, makes me wonder how the world has become as insane as it is. This isn’t rocket science, anyone can easily understand this merely from personal interaction. Yet you are going to lose your job if you mention it publicly under your real name. What the hell kind of world are we living in?

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“You are not open-minded”

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I have had this post on the back burner for some time (I have a number of those actually). A while ago a thread on reddit talked about an extremely flawed study which found that black and white children raised in Germany after world war 2 had the same IQ. Well, not really but that is what prig progs want it to show.

I got into a conversation with a leftoid who had so much cognitive dissonance that not only did he himself point out the flaws in the study and why it didn’t technically show this, he still held firm that it qualified as good evidence that black and white IQs are the same on average just so long as you adjust the environment. Unfortunately this user has since deleted his comments and I didn’t bother saving them all at the time so I just have what I happened to copy over then. Sorry. However, this post isn’t strictly about that one study so summarizing the exchange should be sufficient.

There were two major confounding influences which caused problems for the general application of the findings of this study (and this user pointed this out himself). He quoted the following from the study:

The mothers of the children studied were white German women, while their fathers were white and African-American members of the US occupation forces. In contrast to results obtained in many American studies, the average IQs of the children studied were roughly similar across racial groups

White and black G.I.’s in Germany were not equally representative of their respective populations, since about 30 percent of blacks, compared to about 3 percent of whites, failed the preinduction mental test and were not admitted into the armed forces

The equal IQs were from people who were only half black, and their fathers were unrepresentative because the army didn’t recruit people who failed IQ tests. The blacks who made it to Germany from America in WWII were highly unrepresentative and had been specifically filtered by IQ tests. All of the potential black fathers were above the 30th percentile of the black IQ distribution. In addition, as I will show in my soon to be released book, intelligence is to a large extent X linked which means that when there are big differences in IQ between parents, a child is much more likely to resemble the (white and German) mother than the father. In other words, these results are not surprising, but do not invalidate or even contradict the vast amount of research done over the last century which shows blacks to have about a standard deviation lower IQ than whites. It is a very specific set of circumstances which led to a superficially contradictory result. Further consideration reveals that these kids do not represent blacks in general to any great extent. The consensus from studying racial differences in intelligence are quite clear: 30 years of racial iq studies [pdf]

What is weird about all this is that the guy who I was talking to knew all this was problematic, pointed it out himself in his own comments even, yet still argued with people that these flaws were irrelevant and the study showed that it was all environment. When faced with some opposition from myself and a few others, he eventually resorted to a common leftist shaming tactic which I am sure most of us are familiar with. He had no good arguments with which to defend his position and thus resorted to insulting his opponents character rather than admitting that the flawed study is more or less useless for his position. Here is the excerpt of his comment which is relevant and my response:

“You didn’t read it with an open mind at all”

I love it when leftists pull the “you’re not open minded” card. It shows such a lack of self-awareness it is amazing. There is a difference between rejecting a clearly very flawed study, which in your own comments you showed it to be, and being closed minded. Closed minded is seeing that the preponderance of evidence does not support your preferred happy talk version of things and sticking to the happy talk anyway. Especially if the happy talk is easier as it is the politically “correct” opinion. Open-mindedness is accepting the truth, however difficult it may be and however much people may hate you for it.

I originally planned to link to his comments directly so you could see everything he said, but unfortunately he deleted them. Probably because he realized he looked stupid. Anyway, I have found that some version of “You aren’t open-minded” is an extremely common leftist ploy when they can’t figure out any logical or rational way to defend their beliefs. (Though religious people use it too; stop doing that!) I have met many people in person who do the same thing and say the same damn phrase verbatim even. The problem isn’t that their idea is asinine and indefensible, the problem is that whoever just wont give the idea a chance or a try. They aren’t capable of being objective and thus their opinion should be dismissed. The problem is you as a person. This disingenuous way of shifting the focus of attention from their nonsense to your person is an unfortunately effective method of switching from defense to offense without having to do any rigorous intellectual work. They don’t even have to justify the claim about your person because being open or closed minded is such an ambiguous idea (and with connotations conveniently preset to leftist advantage) that most people immediately allow the topic to be changed and start defending their character when the accusation is in no way warranted. Don’t let leftists (or anyone else) get away with this tactic. Recognize it for what it is and immediately steer the conversation back to their asinine beliefs. Keep them on the defensive. You can point out what just happened explicitly and turn it back, or just ignore it like the shit test it is and make another criticism of their idea directly. Keep on point and keep focused.

I really hate the not open-minded “criticism” because it implies that you have very little knowledge of the subject under debate. It directly insults your integrity and is a very deep sign of disrespect that in better days would have led to an ass-kicking. When found together, ignorance and strong opinion do imply closed mindedness, but very often the ignorance ingredient isn’t actually present and there is little reason to think the “closed-minded” person is not knowledgeable about the subject matter. Often it is the accuser of closed-mindedness who has the smaller degree of knowledge and/or is manifestly losing the debate. Why else would they use this tactic rather than just pointedly defending their position? Even in circumstances where the accusation is true, it is no less of a logical fallacy and shouldn’t be engaged in. Don’t do it yourself, and don’t allow others to do it to you. With greater knowledge you would expect firmer stances on any given issue. If you know why something will or will not work, then you are much more likely not to be compromising about it and you shouldn’t compromise. If your mind is to be changed then it will result from honest, rational argumentation on part of the person trying to change your mind. Not from deceitful sophistry and changing the subject.

Edit: See more comments on this post here.

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