Authoritarianism and Correlates: Behavior, Attitudes, Personality

Good post on the social correlates of authoritarianism.

Race & Conflicts

Using Altemeyer’s Right-Wing Authoritarianism Scale (abbreviated as RWA scale for now on) and a Big-Five personality test, Rosolack (1991) found that authoritarianism correlated negatively with intellect/ openness, conscientiousness and extraversion at -0.30, .23, and .14, respectively. Meaning that those who score higher on the RWA are less likely to seek, detect, comprehend and utilize patterns; more likely to do one’s work well and thoroughly; and are more likely to be full of energy. Other studies have found an insignificant correlation between RWA and extraversion (Costa & McCrae 1992 ; Truskosky and Vaux 1997 [in Butler 2000]). From this, we can see that individuals who are less open to new experiences are more likely to be authoritarians. Butler (2000) found that authoritarianism was correlated with ethnocentrism (.39) and anti-gay attitudes (.60). Interestingly enough, it was also found that authoritarians disliked fat people but didn’t fear becoming fat themselves.

Ray (1976) looked…

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Percent Black and Crime

An interesting predictor of local crime rates is the percent of the region examined that is black. Some may point to this and say that this is a result of discrimination. This is unlikely, as Rubenstein (2016) finds “Victim and witness surveys show that police arrest violent criminals in close proportion to the rates at which criminals of different races commit violent crimes.” Other reasons could include socioeconomic standards in the neighborhood, race differences in IQ, and underlying genetic differences in crime-committing-variables (aggression, ASB, etc.). Whatever the cause, the evidence for the association is documented in this blog post.

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Response to Richardson and Norgate (2015): "Does IQ Really Predict Job Performance?"

Ken Richardson is a figure in the psychometric world who has made some pretty bold claims about g, heritability, and IQ testing as a whole. Out of his many (flawed) works, there is one in particular I wished to respond to. Richardson and Norgate (2015) argue that the correlation between IQ and job performance is, at best, greatly overestimated by the pro-IQ side (figures such as Ian Deary, Richard Haier, Arthur Jensen, and most notably in the job performance debate, Frank Schmidt and John Hunter) and at worst, entirely useless. Do their arguments hold up?

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The Black Plague and European Intelligence

In this post, I want to detail some evidence as to how the ‘Black’ plague or bubonic plague caused a change in European genetic makeup, particularly that concerning intelligence. A few years ago, a study made mainstream news showing that Europeans have less susceptibility to HIV, and generally have stronger immune systems than before, because of the black plague (Laayouni et al., 2014). Now, that finding is not actually the focus of this post, but it allows the ideas within the post to become more realistic.

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