Jesusland Evolution

       After the 2004 election the Jesusland meme was everywhere.  This image represents the 30 red states that elected GW Bush.  We all know how that turned out.  Endless war on Islam and the horrific law of NCLB.   The meme actually originated in a science fiction book called Thirteen by Richard Morgan.  Ironically the UK title of the book was Black Man, much like the UK title of the first Harry Potter book was Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone.  Ignorant, racist America– how the world sees us.

Political science fiction, like Kim Stanley Robinson’s (his newest book New York 2140 is a projection of climate change), offers a way to test drive the future.  And the future is grim.

I’m not particularily incensed about Trump’s election– in an equilibrium system the pendulum swings back.  I think the Founders built in enough protections that 4 years of Trump can do minimal damage– surely there will be pain, but largely among Trump’s voters.  Consider Schwarzeneggers election in californis– he couldnt fufill his campaign promises and earned near universal scorn and disapproval from californians as the worst governer ever.

So that brings us to this year’s Jesusland.

As we can see the rust belt is turning red and the sunbelt is turning blue.  Why is this happening?  Nate Silver has an explanation.    The correlation of educational attainment with liberal voting patterns.  Its pretty powerful.

So this is why we are seeing a frantic attempt to insert conservative ideology into university campuses, ie Murray Racial IQ Theory at Middlebury college.  The problem in complex adaptive systems dynamics is that red and blue demes are disequilibriating under relative fitness in the 21st century.  The Founders design worked great while there was rough parity between the two sub-populations.  But going forward that assumption doesnt hold.  Increased blue demes correlate with educational attainment, local economic growth, centers of culture and academe.  Here is the population dis-equilibriation visualized.

So now lets take a look into the future, via the scholastic poll 2016.

Half these students will be eligible to vote in 2020.   The single greatest correlate for young voters is how their parents voted.  But this poll is showing something else– that education ALONE can cause a switch in affiliation from red to blue.  Its probably not just education, but social influence.  So as more Americans become educated ( a 4-yr college education is perceived by ALL parents as the greatest enhancement of economic ability) we headed for a permanent liberal supermajority.

Can that be a democratic republic?


A Letter to Allison Stanger on Charles Murray and Racial IQ Theory

Dear Alison,

I’m very sorry to hear of your injuries, and of course I do not condone violence as a form of protest.  But I’m very disturbed by your treatment of Murray as just another speaker with a difference of opinion that must be respected under free speech law.

those who prevented Charles Murray from speaking must be punished for violating college rules. But what the events at Middlebury made clear is that, regardless of political persuasion, Americans today are deeply susceptible to a renunciation of reason and celebration of ignorance. They know what they know without reading, discussing or engaging those who might disagree with them. People from both sides of the aisle reject calm logic, eager to embrace the alternative news that supports their prejudices.

Murray has never retracted Racial IQ Theory, even though his thesis has been repeatedly discredited.   And Charles Murray is a political scientist, not a social scientist.  The social science guy that was the co-author of the Bell Curve has died.   The social science (as well as statistical science and data science) problem with Murray Racial IQ Theory is that between group variance is smaller than within group variance.  Competently illustrated below by Dr. Taleb, the Black Swan guy.

So inviting Murray to speak as a social scientist, given that he has never retracted his bad science of Murray Racial IQ Theory, is actually giving legitimacy to “alternative facts”.  I have no problem with Murray speaking as a political “scientist”.  His alt-right, white nationalist POLITICAL views are openly embraced by AEI, his sponsors.  But alternative, conservative fake-science cant be allowed on campuses.  Would you support a Republican climate denialist speaking on climate science?  A Republican Creationist lecturing on evolution?  I don’t think the students would.  Its fine for Murray to speak as a republican political activist.  But make that crystal clear–that needs to be separated from his fake science of Racial IQ Theory.

This is going to be a huge problem going forward– the big reveal from the election results is the deep correlation of educational attainment and liberal voting patterns.  Alt-right sites are already proposing some sort of alternative system to public universities, which seems impossible to me– the US university system is the finest in the world.

You are correct that the extreme polarization of the country has led to the politicization of news and the rise of Kellyanne Conway “alternative facts”.  But we can’t allow the rise of “alternative science”.  The Middlebury students have every right to block the promotion of bad science and conservative “alternative science”.

Meanwhile real scientists are still waiting for Murray to retract his discredited theories on race and IQ.

heres wishing you a speedy recovery and continued academic success

best witches,