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20 June 2018





Thoughts in IQ Decline

What we know about the IQ decline is that it was first detected about 1975 and has continued, and it was distributed across countries. I have been noodling the causes that meet those condition. It occurred to me one of the long-term trends has been the number of progressive teachers in schools and in higher learning institutions. I can only report on US schools, with no overseas experience. Discipline started to decline in the classroom and new teaching ideas started to replace the tried and true reading, writing and arithmetic methods of past years in the 1970s.

We bought McGuffey's Primer and Readers for the girls and were shocked to learn how much students at their grade levels were expected to learn in the late 1800s.

We often hear that California leads the Nation. When we moved from Nebraska in 1980 we were surprised to learn how much more advanced our daughters were in their grades. We were faced with the option of jumping a grade or staying at their grade level and participating in enhancing learning activities which were the options we selected. There was a noted decline in classroom discipline between California schools and those in Nebraska.

Not sure there is a direct connection, but religious attendance started to decline in the late 1960s and early 1970s. A decline that is continuing today. Correlation is not necessarily causation. A closer look may find some common influences, but none to report for now.

Don Bessee

Russ, that time line also follows the pattern of Johnsons great society programs that destroyed families in the cities on top all the rest. ;-)

George Rebane

re jeffpelline 537pm - I rescued this from its proper burial place in the Spam Folder only to illustrate the depth of intellectual depravity that is endemic within the Left. Does anyone have any idea what was racist in this commentary, and why Pelline calls me a racist? Does anyone venture that even someone as limited as Pelline would have made an attempt at rational thought before posting that epithet? From the latest tirade on his blog, confirmed again by this comment, it has been clear for years that he and his literally have no idea of what is presented and discussed on RR. And the man is a perfect posterchild to showcase the ignorance and raw hatred that divides us.

Account Deleted

I'll take a stab at this issue. My wife and I are right smack dab in the middle of the baby boom gen. Our first was born in 1975. The boomers were the first gen to be raised on TV viewing. But our parents were not. I spent quite a few hours in front of the tube, but that time was heavily regulated by my parents and time spent reading books out paced the tube time. We had newspapers and magazines at our house as well as a lot of different kinds of books. We raised our kids the same way. Needless to say - the local library was known to us as kids as well as our kids. Reading is quite a different activity inside the brain from watching TV. Even listening to radio dramas or comedies plays out differently in the brain than watching TV. This has been heavily documented and commented on for decades. The boomers were very comfortable with TV and the various studies showing the number of hours watched in the 'average' home by the '70s was staggering. I'm sure there is a connection with this type of life style in regards to this topic.
Charles Murray has also looked at this topic in his book 'The Bell Curve' and 'Coming Apart'. There are many other books on this topic and more come out on a regular basis.
I'm also thinking about how much of life these days can be navigated with very little fore-thought, effort or attention to detail. As an example - not that long ago small injuries could mean certain death or debilitating life long incapacitation. Up until the 1920s there was very little slack time for teenagers. Often times, a 12 or 13 year old entered into the world of adulthood. Girls were married and became mothers. Boys went to work on the farm or factory or shop with long hours and hard toil. Out-thinking the fellow workers was the fast track to self employment or advancement. The person with good social skills and a clever mind would advance quickly for the most part. The pay off for smarts was far more obvious and clear than it often is now.
And of course there is the onslaught of lowered expectations for certain 'groups' by the left who control the education system in this country. When you lower the bar - don't be surprised if more students than ever fail to clear it.
Ignore Pea-brain. He has no information to bring to the table other than name-calling.

Todd Juvinall

Reading your post I cannot find anything racist in the words. But Pelline is always willing and ready along with his butt buddy Frisch to hear racism in anything and everything. I think perhaps the post hit Pelline personally when you mention that kids are getting dumber. He has some real guilt and that is just sad.


The FUE's pronouncement is an IFF call. A virtue signal. An alarm to the politically correct, much like this:

It is important for the modern social justice warrior to *believe* apparent IQ differences are due entirely to environment, and so the only way to bring up Under-Represented Minorities is to find the missing qualities that the correct thinking folk in charge can find in URM applicants to, for example, Harvard, and discount the wrong indicators like SAT scores in whites and especially overrepresented Asians.


......with the Negroid scores being significantly lower.

This is probably the dog whistle that jeffy heard. If he doesn’t respond publicly he gets drummed out of Proggy Club. Ironic from a guy who consciously chose to move to perhaps the whitest town in California!

Bob Hobert

My grandfather completed 8th grade in 1906 and my father graduated from high school in 1938. I have seen school exams from their era and marvel at what they were expected to know. It was more than some college graduates could demonstrate today. Sure, today's students can get needed answers on their smart phone or personal computers. If the battery dies, however, all is lost. They are not well trained to actually think. Use it or lose it has become more than a catchy phrase. It has come true.


Posted by: Greg | 20 June 2018 at 09:16 PM


I’m just surprised they found a big enough pod to duplicate jeffy.


This is the kind of teaching that results in IQ decline.

Professor: Learning Math Can Cause ‘Collateral Damage’ to Society


According to a new textbook written by a professor at the University of Exeter, learning mathematics can cause “collateral damage” to society because it “provides a training in ethics-free thought.”

“Reasoning without meanings provides a training in ethics-free thought,” Paul Ernest writes in “The Ethics of Mathematics: Is Mathematics Harmful?” — a chapter of his book The Philosophy of Mathematics Education Today.

In an abstract for the book, Ernest claims that although he does “acknowledge that mathematics is a widespread force for good,” “there is significant collateral damage caused by learning mathematics.”

According to Ernest, this “collateral damage” happens in three ways. First, he argues, the styles of thinking involved with mathematics are “detached” and “calculated” ones, which value “rules, abstraction, objectification, impersonality, unfeelingness, dispassionate reason, and analysis” — which he claims “can be damaging when applied beyond mathematics to social and human issues.”

The second problem, he explains, is that “the applications of mathematics in society can be deleterious to our humanity unless very carefully monitored and checked.”

“Money and thus mathematics is the tool for the distribution of wealth,” he writes. “It can therefore be argued that as the key underpinning conceptual tool mathematics is implicated in the global disparities in wealth.”

Finally, Ernest claims, “the personal impact of learning mathematics on learners’ thinking and life chances can be negative for a minority of less successful students, as well as potentially harmful for successful students.” Ernest continues to explain that math is often viewed as “masculine,” and that that can essentially make it difficult for women to deal with learning it.

Account Deleted

More on the topic from Jim Goad
He brings up some interesting points about how certain kinds of data are excluded as being a little too hot to deal with. If our inquiries into a field of knowledge are constrained by taboos and no-go areas, how can we trust the findings?


scotto: "If our inquiries into a field of knowledge are constrained by taboos and no-go areas, how can we trust the findings?"

There does appear to be a certain cooking of the books when any sort of data wanders into areas that violate current progressive religious beliefs. No doubt the same thing was true 100 years ago when the world was run by a different group of people. I suppose that it's some of the spoils from winning a culture war.

IQ is a marvelous hotbed for arguments and provides endless opportunities for fun when people maintain fictions with a lot of emotion.

Personally, I don't sweat it too much. While all the hand-waving continues, there's bound to be a research project at 23andMe training an AI to pair up test scores with genetic samples. You won't even need to know why it's true but it would be a hoot to see significantly different behaviors and abilities attached to peoples' appearance. For one thing, we can prove that ginger-haired people don't have souls.



One thing I like to think about is the relationship between wealth and test scoring. Chicken and egg. Are smart people more likely to be well-off, do well-off people perform a better job of educating children? Why? People claim to know the answers but there's a lack of rigor in the middle of all the sophistry.

If nothing else, given the limited capacity of children to learn, they sure could be doing a lot better job of it.

Relevant chart.

George Rebane

scenes 744am - when you consider this 'chicken-egg question' Mr scenes, be sure to also include in your thinking the inter-generational dynamism in America's wealthiest upper percentages.

Steve Frisch

Perhaps mental illness in the early baby boom generation is simply un-recognized and under diagnosed.

Todd Juvinall

Sure all those returning vets that saved the world from your pals had bad DNA.

Bill Tozer

Maybe it’s the GMO’s in our food. Maybe it's something in the water. Maybe it’s the Russians messing with our weather. If we can trace the decline to a specific timeframe, then that’s were we start. Breakup of the nuclear family seems like a good place to start.

My own ideas would be laughed at here. I believe ancient man had much higher intelliect than modern man. Untold centuries ago, some guys looked around and categorized and named every animal by their zoological classification...without scientific instruments or paper and pen. Just by observation they complied the complex classification, even subsets and subspecies.. Ancient man looked around and designed the first cities, without measuring instruments and using only the materials at hand. Somebody looked around and picked up a piece of wood and made musical instruments when none existed before.

Thousands of years ago man wrote that all the water on earth goes up into the clouds, rains back down on earth, and it is all recycled, no new water is made. They knew that no new mass is being made. They knew. They knew the harmony of the universe, from the furtherest reaches to the most microscopic cellular structure using only they powers of reason.

Where are the new Mozarts, then new Michelangelos, the modern day Shakespeares? The so called Age of Enlightenment. Where are the Thomas Jefferson’s today?
As a (quasi) believer in parts of the 2nd theory of thermodynamics, it’s easy to see the superior intelligence of our forefathers has declined since the end Age of Enlightenment, it not thousands of years prior. Yep, laugh at me all you want.

Steve could be on to something about undiagnosed mental freaky stuff. Through the 1980’s there was not one single case of Attention Deficient Disorder even reported in Japan nor throughout Japan’s prior history.

Let’s start with the decline of IQ’s tied to a specific time period, ok. How about this era?
A lot was going on. TV in every homes, education changes, welfare state with dads booted from the home, drugs...a bunch of things.


Russ 954pm

The text isn't a math textbook, it's a math education textbook... some of the drek being taught to aspiring math teachers earning math teaching creds.


Toes 1012am

Can't do much research into what effects IQ due to the ethics of experimenting on human beings, except the experiments being run by education pedagogists/theorists, into how to best teach math and language to children, that keep failing. Whole Language, whole math, morphed into Common Core by the same crowd.

I suspect early child care putting very small children into the care of the less literate and numerate is a factor, as is the dumbing down of Elementary Education and Educators.

Paul Emery

There is no doubt there is a dumbing down of America. The current selection of President is ample evidence.


Posted by: Paul Emery | 21 June 2018 at 11:11 AM

How many should we admit's really a very simple question? Surely with your titanic Hillary supporting IQ answering this simple question shouldn't be in any way difficult!

Paul Emery

Didn't vote for Hillary Fish. never have.

The topic on this post is declining IQ numbers, that topic should be on another post or the Sandbox.

George Rebane

PaulE 1111am - Am I correct to interpret your comment as being a non-snark assignation of the real cause for Trump's victory as due to America's dumbth, and not wanting the change outlined by candidate Trump (while willing to tolerate his unconventional political mien)?

Account Deleted

scenes 7:44 - See 'Coming Apart' for a good look at that connection between wealth and IQ. I also remember reading a while ago that the DNA testing companies were well aware of certain genetic factors in determining IQ and they had no plans to inform the customers of that info. Waaaay too hot to handle. I find it humorous that anyone who dares to bring up the well documented info about northern Asians having the highest IQs of all the peoples in the world are invariably referred to as 'white supremacists'.
Toz - "Where are the new Mozarts, then new Michelangelos, the modern day Shakespeares? The so called Age of Enlightenment. Where are the Thomas Jefferson’s today?"
Please remember that a lot of the artists and statesmen of times past who are revered and honored today were often considered failures, losers and nut jobs (or worse) in their day. Time will sort out the lasting value of this age.

Paul Emery



Talk is cheap George. The price of action is colossal. Trump is a serial liar and a bullshitter, a product of the dumbing down of America.

A carnival barker can convince dumb ones that what they have for sale is good for them. Trump is very good a that.

Todd Juvinall

Actually anyone that voted for Gary Johnson has to be a true moron with a low IQ. No chance to win and the dopiest policies even a high schooler would reject. Anyone posting here vote for that loser Johnson?


"There is no doubt there is a dumbing down of America. The current selection of President is ample evidence." -Punchy 1111am

There was only one person on the ballot for President who had kept their failure to pass the Washington DC Bar exam hidden for four decades. She didn't win.

Besides, given how the country is doing at the moment, perhaps we should have elected half-wits all along... focusing on the quality of the wit rather than the quantity.


Right here, Todd 1151am. Want to IQ wrestle?

Johnson and his VP candidate Weld were both former multiple term GOP Governors who didn't have scandal plagued administrations.

Todd Juvinall

Who cares if they were old GOPers? I don't. It is the NOW that counts. And my superior IQ is obviously a major impediment to the less endowed.

Paul Emery


Perhaps you should review my rants on this blog about the failure of our two party system to provide intelligent leadership for our country. The Democrats are not immune from the dumbing down of this country.


Punchy 1150am

Hillary Clinton also is and was a serial liar and bullsh*tter, but she tells lies and shovels bull that the media (including backwater "community" low power FM stations) desperately want to believe.


Posted by: Paul Emery | 21 June 2018 at 11:28 AM

Didn't vote for Hillary Fish. never have.

Don't believe you Punch. You play too fast and loose with the truth to have earned the benefit of the doubt.

The topic on this post is declining IQ numbers, that topic should be on another post or the Sandbox.

Fortunately I don't take directions from you Punch. If George wants this to be a sandbox post I'll leave it to him to tell me! Anyway since you are so greasy about not answering questions that make you uncomfortable I have to chase you down wherever you are.


Posted by: Todd Juvinall | 21 June 2018 at 11:51 AM

Anyone posting here vote for that loser Johnson?

I did Todd! Ask Gregory why!


Todd 1203pm

Your forfeit is accepted.

Punchy 1204pm

The Democratic Party *OWNS* the USA's education industry from K-12, to community colleges to colleges to universities. They literally ARE the dumbers down of education.

Paul Emery


As you know I'm a strong supporter of Charter Schools giving parents a choice in the philosophy of education their children receive.

George Rebane

OK gentlemen, back to the country's declining IQ (please).


George 1238pm, the Education system IS part of the IQ problem. Even Charles Murray, in the Bell Curve, gave a swag that IQ was about half nature and half nurture, and if we pawn off our very young to illiterate and innumerate baby care, and our K-12 kids to the least capable college students who managed to stay interested in gawd-awful pedagogy courses in order to earn Credentials to allow public employment with low, low SAT scores.

In specific terms, for 2010:

The mean Critical Reading score was 501. Education majors scored 481.
The mean Mathematics score was 516. Education majors scored 486.
The mean Writing score was 492. Education majors scored 477.

You can't farm off teaching your kids to people who can't, and so they are teaching, and expect them to be able to think logically.

Punchy 1237pm

And people choose schools like the Yuba River Charter School, that, before the STAR testing regime was killed off, was the 100th school on its list of 100 Similar Schools. Wretchedly bad performance but great fealty to Progressive ideals. Now, if you want to make for a level playing field, allow schools operated by churches and temples. Anyone. Just let the parents decide.

The Yuba River Charter building is almost finished. Dumbth.


A sentence above needs to be changed:
"Even Charles Murray, in the Bell Curve, gave a swag that IQ was about half nature and half nurture. (period) If we pawn off our very young to illiterate and innumerate baby care, and our K-12 kids to the least capable college students who managed to stay interested in gawd-awful pedagogy courses in order to earn Credentials to allow public employment with low, low SAT scores."

I was not intending to put words in Murray's mouth even if I suspect he'd agree with me.

Todd Juvinall

Paul Emery | 21 June 2018 at 12:04 PM

Just one more dig. Paul Emery says he talks about the screwed up TWO party system when he and others her voted for a third party. Am I missing something?

Todd Juvinall

I must humble myself at Greg's feet. He truly is of a higher IQ. Mea culpa. LOL!

Bill Tozer

What’s the use of building new school buildings and new charter schools if the teachers are inside said structures are numbskulls? The dim lightbulbs, the half wits, the dumb shits. The bottom of the barrel, the subpar, the mentally challenged, those with underdeveloped minds are given the job to teach children to master subjects that which the instructors fail to master.??? Why are they even allowed in the classrooms if they are the leftovers nobody else will hire? If painting the walls of classrooms could have increased test scores or made dumb ass teachers smarter, this education crisis problem could be solved with a trip to the hardware store.

That whole agrument shows anyone promoting such an idea as to toss more money at this national disgrace has the IQ of a worm. Exactly like the worms they are, our less than intelligent teachers eat through the apples, leaving the cores to rot.

You can’t give what you don’t have, you can’t transmit what you don’t got. Now, rather than put the whole blame on teachers, we should blame also the lowering of standards that allow dimwits to get a teaching certificate. Also, rather than blaming setting the bar for teaching standards so low it’s in the dirt, we must also blame those instructors and professors who actually teach people to teach. That is where it all starts. The inmates are running the asylum.

Paul Emery


To be continued in the Sandbox this evening.


Toes 143pm

The discovery methods inherent in Common Core have that covered... teachers aren't to be sages on the stage as in the bad old days... they are to be guides on the side helping the kids to authentically discover the wisdom of the ages by standing on the shoulders of the ignorant, their classmates.

Unfortunately, it isn't as cut and dried as blithering idiots being hired to teach... and there are some very good and bright teachers... but the average teacher in California has earned a CalState degree but they aren't the brightest of the bunch. I've met and worked for people with CalState/CalPoly degrees who were very good at what they did.

It doesn't take a genius to teach K-12 effectively, but if you want teachers to prepare kids for higher education it does help if they have a clue what a higher education is.

A past NJUHSD superintendent told me that they loved hiring fresh CalState graduates as teachers. Bright (on the educator spectrum), high energy (on the educator spectrum) folk who love kids and teaching... and yes, they had an education Bachelor's from a state college.

George Boardman

Good news for Republicans. While the white population is falling faster than projected, whites--particularly less educated whites--will still make up the bulk of eligible voters for awhile.

Whites without a bachelor's degree will make up 44 percent of eligible voters in 2020. A political scientist who tracks these trends believes Republicans could continue to win presidential elections and lose the popular vote through 2036 if they do even better among whites who had not graduated from college, according to the New York Times.

Which brings me to Todd's "superior" intelligence: If I adjusted our thermostat to match Todd's IQ, we'd freeze to death.

George Rebane

Greg 109pm - Not sure of the meaning/intent of your first sentence.

Todd Juvinall

George Boardman | 21 June 2018 at 02:13 PM
Actually the reverse. You would be hard pressed to add yours and your kids IQ's to match mine alone. You seem to be a jealous old white cracker living in a all white gated community of commuters. But hey, we all see you are really not that smart.


George R, 216pm

The first sentence of my 109pm was "George 1238pm, the Education system IS part of the IQ problem. "

It was a simple declaration that linked the IQ issue to Education, followed by an assertion that Charles Murray had gone on the record that IQ was about half nature and half nurture.

Is the meaning and intent clearer to you now?

George Rebane

Gregory 232pm - With your capitalized 'IS' you seem to be pointing out a deficit in my understanding or commentary about the relationship of our education system to the IQ issue. So the answer is NO, I am not clear on your meaning/intent.


Imagine the fooferaw if you put this map up in the back of a sixth grade class.

An excellent follow on essay by GeorgeR would be something on inbreeding in the Islamic world. I can hear the Emery/Pelline/Frisch exploding from quite a distance.

Account Deleted

scenes - imagine putting that map up in any classroom. Or the DNC HQ.

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