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Comment Re:What about the NBA? (Score 1) 328

The problem with your link is that showing an IQ test gap doesn't necessarily prove a "significant difference in mental capacity between humans of different races." Correlation does not necessarily equal causation and all that jazz.

For one, many people have pointed out flaws in IQ tests. Do they really measure "general intelligence"? Are there components they don't track well? And are there aspects of test design that favor some socioeconomic or cultural groups over others?

But let's assume that IQ tests ARE actually a perfect measure of general mental capacity for just a moment. Even if that's true, your own link shows part of the problem -- from your link:

However, even small differences in average IQ at the group level might theoretically have large effects on social outcomes. For example, a randomly selected group of Americans with an average IQ of 103 had a poverty rate 25% lower than a group with an average IQ of 100. Similar substantial correlations in high school drop-out rates, crime rates, and other outcomes have been measured.

Now, one conclusion we might take from this is that the marginally lower IQ of race X leads to greater poverty, high-school drop-out, crime rate, etc. in race X compared to Y.

OR -- the causation could be the opposite. That is, maybe living in a local sub-culture that doesn't complete education as much (or doesn't have access to as high-quality education as others, see most inner city schools) and has greater poverty and other social problems could result in worse education and conditions for raising children, resulting in lower IQ test schools.

It seems that the latter is the larger factor in the explanation, based on a number of studies. If you take poor black kids and raise them in middle-class or upper-class white households, a large percentage of the "IQ gap" magically disappears. If you control for socioeconomic status and parents' education level, a lot of the supposed "gap" disappears. In addition to educational opportunity, a lot of this is also likely related to health and nutrition -- it is well-established in many studies that nutritional deficiencies, particularly at early ages, can cause significant differences in IQ. (And black and hispanic kids in the U.S. are known to have a greater rate of nutritional problems than other races.)

Once you factor in all of this stuff, you're left with MAYBE a few points of IQ difference between races at most. Maybe -- it's still inconclusive, and some adoption studies have suggested there's really no difference at all.

Point being -- at least when it comes to the observed racial differences, a much larger portion is likely based in cultural factors rather than genetics. At least that's what the studies on black and hispanic kids have shown. I haven't seen as many studies looking at whether the asian IQ advantage dissipates when environmental/cultural factors are taken into account, but there have been at least a few which show the effect is diminished in adopted kids or once asian kids are removed from their language or culture.

Submission + - SPAM: Feminist Discovers Why Women Can't do STEM

Stinky Cheese Man writes: "Are STEM Syllabi Gendered? A Feminist Critical Discourse Analysis" by Laura Parson of the University of North Dakota is difficult to distinguish from parody. Apparently women and minorities are intimidated by catalog descriptions of STEM courses. The STEM course descriptions analyzed by Ms. Parson implied "that not only would students be held to difficult high standards, but also that there was also a base of knowledge that was required to be successful in the course. [This] created an impression of extremely difficult courses, which ... would be prohibitive for those not confident in those areas, such as women and minorities."

Furthermore, scientific knowledge itself is considered to be male-biased. "STEM syllabi explored in this analysis promoted the male-biased STEM institution by reinforcing views of knowledge as static and unchanging, as it is traditionally considered to be in science, which is a masculine concept of knowledge." This is opposed to the "feminist view of knowledge" in which "knowledge is constructed by the student and dynamic, subject to change."

Ms. Parson feels that "the individualistic, difficult and competitive nature of the STEM classroom" creates a "a chilly climate that marginalizes women".

Thanks to Tyler O'Neil at PJ Media.

Comment Re: Rule of thumb (Score 1) 296

Really? No domestic or international commercial air traffic flies over your house? Where do you live that there's no such air traffic. That would be refreshing, I must say. Around here, we see and or hear hundreds of flights a day. The lower altitude stuff is not as common, but there's really no distinction from an FAA perspective.

Comment Re:Look a bit higher (Score 1) 296

"Plain sight," as in "you don't need tools to get to it." The sort of thing any FAA inspector could simply walk over and easily see/get to.

Otherwise, semantics. You can't fly your over 9-ounce toy, at all, unless it bears your registration information. The uniqueness of the registration between someone's multiple toys is neither here nor there. It's "you can't fly your toy without federal involvement and a way to track the toy back to you via a publicly searchable database." That's what matters.

Comment Re:It's already known (Score 1) 296

The FAA has statutory authority over every bit of US (and territorial) air space from 1mm above the ground. They are exactly who defines who can fly where. That has nothing to do with things like privacy laws - that's about what you do with, for example, images taken while flying. Right now, that's a patchwork of local and state laws. But who (and what) can fly where and how high: that's FAA turf, entirely.

Comment Re:Look a bit higher (Score 1) 296

The over .55, under 55 pound RC aircraft must carry a registration number in plain site. If you own four of them, all four must carry that number. If you operate under part 107, all of your RC devices need their own unique registration codes. These aren't "guidelines," these are rules now formally in place with serious consequences should you blow them off.

Comment Re:Easy answer to the federal question (Score 2) 296

The answer to the federal question is easy. Get a few of these drones flying over the White House and see if anybody complains. Done.

The FAA has already designated a 30-mile-wide circle around the White House as a No Fly Zone - with serious penalties if you operate there. Bad example. You are not "done."

Comment Re:It's already known (Score 0) 296

Funny how you're asserting such specific details (anonymously) without something as simple as a link to this incredibly well established law. It doesn't exist. You're making it up. You're lying. And you know it, which is why you cannot cite even a general bit of guidance from the FAA (let alone a specific federal rule or piece of legislation) that to back up your hand-wavy assertion. Here's what we know: the FAA requires (without specific waiver) that operators stay UNDER 400'. The agency goes to great length to spell out dozens of specific rules that apply to newly certificed (part 107) commercial operators, and of course the rules for recreational operators are quite a bit looser. At no point, anywhere, does the FAA indicate the altitude below which you "own" the airspace around private property.

That doesn't mean operators should be jerks. But we know you're being one.

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