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I haven't read Murray's book on education. Does he discuss Direct Instruction? While I'm generally skeptical of educational interventions, that apparently has been repeatedly verified among the lowest-performing students since the Johnson administration. Of course the upper-middle class and teachers themselves hate it.

The IQ thing seems to be an area where the hereditarians have steadily gained ground and the nurturists have slowly conceded it. That kind of dynamic is one reason I gave elsewhere for believing in anthropocentric global warming. I don't think that's going to happen for the Holocaust.

I can't say regarding Direct Instruction because I've only skimmed Murray's book. I know that he discusses Hirsch's "Core Knowledge" curriculum for young students, which often goes hand in hand with DI.

I have the same view re global warming, though I still wonder about the extent to which institutional bias and research funding may skew the emerging consensus. Null hypotheses don't get much ink, and environmental studies seem to be largely activist-driven. I certainly wouldn't bet against the anthropocentric model.

I wish there were a betting market for this stuff, like with Hanson's "Idea Futures" concept. The Holocaust debate is especially tricky because there are serious social and legal sanctions that weigh against open skepticism of certain claims. Still, I think the drift over the past few decades has been toward mild revisionist concession as tacitly evidenced by the functionalist/intentionalist schism and by the decreasing emphasis of certain points of lurid fixation. The gassing stuff was fishy from the start, and I think it's only a matter of time before someone "discovers" the weirdness that Bad People have been yammering about for these many years. Words will be chosen carefully.

I guess you're right about functionalism/continentalism (though that's a self-serving comment as it's what I already found most sensible). But wasn't the grand old man of holocaust history (we may call it "holocaustory"), Raoul Hilberger, a functionalist? In that case we're not really seeing any movement.

I'm sure you meant "intentionalist" and "Raul Hilberg."

The schism was articulated after Hilberg did his important work, but yes, "Destruction" is now, retrospectively, taken to be a functionalist interpretation of the Holocaust. It may be significant that Hilberg was a steadfast defender of free speech for revisionists. In an interview with Norman Finkelstein, his phrasing is at once admirable and, to my mind, interesting:

"I do not want to muzzle any of this because it is a sign of weakness not of strength when you try to shut somebody up. Yes, there is always a risk. Nothing in life is without risk, but you have to make rational decisions about everything."

My question, and a question for the historian, is: what does he mean by "risk"? I'm not asking rhetorically.

You're right that I got Raul's name wrong, but I did mean to write "continentalist" as opposed to "globalist".

Ok. Didn't mean to be a dick.

I don't consider it dickish. If you do, then dick away. More clarity is always good.

Hello, you two. Just wanted to remind you that Jews are smarter, especially the Ashkenazi. Carry on!

"Individualism remains a seductive muse, and thank your stars for that -- even if tribalism is fated."

I've had this issue on my head since having a back 'n' forth with Jim Goad over it. Do you mean to say that the call of the tribe will surely overwhelm even the most strident individualist, or is it, like HBD, a numbers 'n' statistics game?


I mean the latter, slathered in defiant romance. The weight of history and science convinces me that demography plays an iron role in the collective destiny of peoples, just as the HBD crowd is prone to shout. It's just that I don't take marching orders from nature. Individualism allows us -- me -- to look the beast in the eye and get on with it.

To tap it a bit deeper, I see racialism as sublimated mortality salience:


Is your exchange with Goad online? He's an old friend.

One of the things that appeal to me about Stirner is his deconstruction of essentialist phantoms: why should an "is" automatically imply an "ought", and why should defiance of "ought" mark one as an "isn't"?

My exchange with Goad is here: http://www.facebook.com/wall.php?id=2317532578&page=1&hash=91a65ff8bb2f3e1a42b09c0b83083ec3

What do you make of the theory that some peeps can make a little IQ go a long way, whilst others rest on their mental laurels and exercise a very small fraction of their vast cerebral endowments?

"What do you make of the theory that some peeps can make a little IQ go a long way, whilst others rest on their mental laurels and exercise a very small fraction of their vast cerebral endowments?"

I wouldn't call it a theory. I'm quite sure it's true at the margins, and I could cite the same anecdotes and sleep well enough. But exceptions prove the rule. Trivia interests me, but iron laws don't bend to wish.

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