Using Technology to Deepen Democracy, Using Democracy to Ensure Technology Benefits Us All

Friday, August 26, 2005

The Latest Dispatch from the Reductionist Clown College

Genetic reductionists across the blogosphere have pointed to this BBC story reporting on "[a] study to be published later this year in the British Journal of Psychology [that] says that men are on average five points ahead on IQ tests. Paul Irwing and Professor Richard Lynn claim the difference grows when the highest IQ levels are considered." Somewhat less widely reported so far are other claims by this selfsame Richard Lynn, among them this suave eugenicist gem [via Atrios, originally via FAIR]:
What is called for here is not genocide, the killing off of the population of incompetent cultures. But we do need to think realistically in terms of the 'phasing out' of such peoples.... Evolutionary progress means the extinction of the less competent. To think otherwise is mere sentimentality.

Who can doubt that the Caucasoids and the Mongoloids are the only two races that have made any significant contributions to civilization?

Ugh! Champions of consensus science in general, and of genetic science and evolutionary theory in particular, already have our hands full defending against the assaults of both religious fundamentalists and the priestly elites they serve whose customs and parochial privileges are threatened by the destabilizing novelty arising from scientific inquiry into the environment and the consequent technological transformation of customary human capacities, as well as market fundamentalists and the moneyed elites they serve whose short-term profits are threatened by scientific inquiry into complex and longer-term impacts of some of their products and conduct on human lives.

But even in the midst of our distress at these fundamentalist assaults, even as we cast about in search of allies to defend secular civilization it is important to remember that advocates of scientistic reductionisms, racist and misogynist genetic determinisms, and retro-futurist Social Darwinist fallacies are peddling pernicious pseudo-science no less than are astrologers, proponents of "intelligent design" Christian creationism, climate-change deniers, industry-funded "safe-cigarette" researchers, faith-healers, and flim-flam telephone psychics.

The Richard Lynns of the world need to be told in no uncertain terms that genocide is never "progressive," that scientific civilization liberates us from evolutionary processes "red in tooth and claw," that truly technoprogressive champions of scientific culture celebrate human diversity more than we do "reproductive fitness" and that we do not think that makes you more "realistic" than us.

With friends like the Reductionist Clown College, who needs enemies?

1 comment:

Tom FitzGerald said...

"[a] study to be published later this year in the British Journal of Psychology [that] says that men are on average five points ahead on IQ tests."

You know what's creepy? That the BJP isn't going to publish a study saying "the IQ test is an average of 5 pts biased against women," with the same data.