Security Guard Edduin Khaleb Zelaya Grunfeld Shoots M-F Transgender ‘Furry Potato’ Livestreaming Outside Chabad School in Los Angeles

Edduin Khaleb Zelaya Grunfeld is an Orthodox Jew GoFundMe

NYP: “The synagogue security guard who opened fire on the man recording video”

REPORT:

A suspicious individual was shot at a Chabad girls high school in Los Angeles on Thursday afternoon.

Police and paramedics responded to the area of the Etz Jacob Congregation/ Ohel Chana High School in the 7600 block of Beverly Boulevard at 12:24 p.m.

In an email to parents, the school said it’s security guard observed the man canvassing the outside of the school.

Video (see below) shows the suspect filming the school property just moments before he was shot.

When the suspect was confronted, he become belligerent and was shot in the leg. The man, believed to be around 35 years old, was conscious and breathing and was transported to a local hospital.

Los Angeles Times:

A local YouTube personality was shot while taking video outside a Los Angeles synagogue and Jewish high school Thursday afternoon, according to authorities, sources and social media.

Police responded to the Etz Jacob Congregation/Ohel Chana High School building on the 7600 block of Beverly Boulevard at 12:24 p.m., said Officer Drake Madison, a spokesman for the Los Angeles Police Department.

A source with knowledge of the investigation described the injured person as a YouTube personality who usually live streams about First Amendment issues.

Police have described the victim as a man in his mid 30’s. However, a YouTube video that appears to show the incident from the perspective of the person who was shot was posted later in the afternoon by a social media personality who describes herself as a transgender woman.

Witnesses to the Fairfax neighborhood incident said they saw someone dressed in black and holding a camera arguing with a security guard who was standing behind a gated entrance to the synagogue.

Reddit thread

June 13, 2018:

The transgender “auditor” known as “Furry Potato” was reportedly arrested for making threats at a US Marine Recruiting Station in Valencia, California.

Seen in the video “Marine Recruiting Office”,” Potato is stopped by the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department (Santa Clarita unit), who asked if she’s okay.

“Oh, I’m fine,” she said. “I’m just really embarrassed by our Armed Forces.”

Potato claimed that she was “doing a story” on the recruiting centers, as she had never seen multiple branches set up right next to one another.

“Turns out, they’re all cowards,” she said.

The LASD, no doubt confused at this point, ask her why she was allegedly shouting racial slurs, part of the reason the law was called on her. Potato denied any such thing, claiming she gets racial slurs hurled at her because she’s “brown.”

When asked for her name, she responded with “All my friends call me ‘Daddy’.”

No longer willing to invest much more into Furry Potato, the deputies avoid getting into a prolonged argument with her and drive away.

Feeling high on the horse, Potato laughs at the LASD as they drive off.

Only a little while later, Potato once again finds herself in the presence of law enforcement, including a LASD deputy she accused of not knowing the law.

“Put your hands behind your back for me,” one Deputy said.

“Am I being illegally detained?” Potato asked.

“You are being detained,” the deputy responded.

Approached by some higher ranking law-enforcement as she taunted the deputy from earlier, she soon found himself turning off her camera.

Furry Potato (who goes by the name Zhoie Perez), reportedly identifies as a Hispanic female on police records. She was charged with a felony at 11:45 AM on Tuesday, with a bail of $75,000. She was released at half-past midnight this morning.

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The Cofnas Critique

Nathan Cofnas writes on NathanCofnas.com:

Here I have compiled my entire exchange with Kevin MacDonald in chronological order. I believe that my first article in the Genetic Literacy Project gives the best overview of the debate. MacDonald has said that he feels the same way about his final reply to me.

My original paper in Human Nature.

My article with Jonathan Anomaly on MacDonald and the alt-right in Quillette.

MacDonald’s reply.

Interview with Luke Ford.

My comments on MacDonald’s response.

MacDonald’s second reply.

My article in the Genetic Literacy Project on how censorship of controversial ideas makes MacDonald’s theory appealing.

MacDonald’s response in GLP.

My rejoinder in GLP.

Edward Dutton’s defense of MacDonald in Evolutionary Psychological Science.

My response to Dutton in EPS.

MacDonald’s response to my paper on Dutton.

PowerPoint slides for my talk on MacDonald at the University of Buckingham.

I have some thoughts on the new response below to Nathan Cofnas:

* Historian J. Otto Pohl writes: “Nathan Cofnas seeks to explain Jewish disproportionate overrepresentation in various 20th century leftwing movements as being solely the result of higher average IQ and geographical concentration in urban areas.”

Wrong. Cofnas never presents the Default Hypothesis as the “sole” reason for Jewish over-representation in intellectual endeavors. He argues that the Default Hypothesis has more explanatory power than Kevin MacDonald’s more complicated group evolutionary strategy thesis (which many of Kevin’s supporters such as JF Gariepy and Greg Johnson would prefer Kevin dropped).

Dr. Pohl is also wrong when he presents the Cofnas paper as devoted to Jewish over-representation in 20th Century left-wing movements. That’s only part of it. The Cofnas paper is a critique of Kevin MacDonald’s book, The Culture of Critique: An Evolutionary Analysis of Jewish Involvement in Twentieth-Century Intellectual and Political Movements. The Cofnas Critique questions MacDonald’s assertion that Judaism is a group evolutionary strategy.

* Otto Pohl writes: “He completely ignores the role of affinity networks, in group ethnic preference, and the creation of economic niches by certain ethnic groups…”

The Cofnas Critique shows that the Default Hypothesis largely explains Jewish over-representation in high IQ fields, and thus there is no need in a paper with space constraints to explore the role of these other small factors when IQ alone primarily accounts for Jewish success. This one single variable accounts for most of Ashkenazi Jewish success. Jewish groups such as Sephardim and Mizrahim who have average IQs of 97 and 92 respectively do not enjoy out-sized success even though they have affinity networks, in group ethnic preference, and economic niches. Ashkenazi IQ is not the sole reason for Ashkenazi success, but other factors are all secondary to the high average IQ (usually measured at 110-112, with MacDonald placing it at 117 weighted to verbal intelligence).

Blacks, Mexicans, Abos, Puerto Ricans, Chinese, Japanese, Finns, Germans, Thai, Australians and every other people in the world have affinity networks, in group ethnic preference and economic niches but per capita they do not enjoy Ashkenazi success levels. Why? IQ provides about 60% of the answer (average IQ in a nation correlates at about .62 with per capita GNP).

* Otto Pohl writes: “…as well documented in the scholarship of Thomas Sowell, Amy Chua, John Armstrong, Daniel Chirot, Anthony Reid, and Yuri Slezkine to name just a few, none of whom are mentioned at all by Cofnas.”

Cofnas, with limited space, is critiquing one 544-page book by Kevin MacDonald. That’s the purpose of the Cofnas Critique. He doesn’t need to delve into Thomas Sowell, Amy Chua, John Armstrong, Daniel Chirot, Anthony Reid, and Yuri Slezkine. Cofnas does not mention Aristotle, Jesus Christ and Cardi B either, not because they are not important, but because they are not germane to the topic of his paper.

* Otto Pohl writes: “Instead he merely cherry picks examples from McDonald and seeks to show that Jews were equally involved in non-leftwing movements and that this somehow proves that the disproportionate role of Jews in leftwing movements such as communism is explicable entirely by IQ and geography and has absolutely nothing to do with any other possible factors.”

Cofnas could pick examples from a recent composition by Kanye West but as he is writing a paper about a Kevin MacDonald book, he examines the examples Kevin puts forward and in doing so, Cofnas reveals that many of the examples MacDonald uses to support his thesis are actually counter-examples. Cofnas nowhere says that the disproportionate role of Jews in the Left is explained solely by IQ and geography. To give a sporting analogy, on February 3, 2019, largely on the basis of its defense, the New England Patriots defeated the Los Angeles Rams 13-3 in the Super Bowl. The Patriots defense was the primary reason that New England won the game, but not the sole reason. Taking advantage of his affinity network, in group ethnic preference and economic niche, Patriot quarterback Tom Brady led three scoring drives.

Also, the Cofnas Critique explicitly says that Jews were not as involved in right of center intellectual movements as they were in left-wing movements. Otto Pohl apparently does not read with much comprehension. Nathan Cofnas wrote: “Because of Jewish intelligence and geography—particularly intelligence—Jews are likely to be overrepresented in any intellectual movement or activity that is not overtly anti-Semitic. The qualification that Jews are not overrepresented in overtly anti-Semitic movements is important because, in the twentieth century, a higher proportion of right-wing than left-wing movements were overtly anti-Semitic. According to the default hypothesis, Jewish involvement in politics has been somewhat skewed to the left in recent history, but Jews are also overrepresented in right-wing movements that are not anti-Semitic.”

Contrary to what Dr. Pohl claims, Cofnas nowhere claims that the “disproportionate role of Jews in leftwing movements such as communism is explicable entirely by IQ and geography and has absolutely nothing to do with any other possible factors.”

* Otto Pohl writes: “Before tackling the main issue of Cofnas falsely claiming that IQ differences between ethno-racial groups is the “default hypothesis” in academia…”

Nowhere does Cofnas claim that the Default Hypothesis of his paper (developed by Steven Pinker) is the default hypothesis of academia. Otto Pohl makes that up. It is mind-bogging that Dr. Pohl read the Cofnas Critique and concluded that “the main issue of Cofnas falsely claiming that IQ differences between ethno-racial groups is the “default hypothesis” in academia…” There is no such claim in the Cofnas paper. The foundation of Otto Pohl’s critique is to dispute a non-existent claim.

* Otto Pohl writes: “I would like to note that this is largely a false question and one that creates a self-serving narrative.”

What is the false question and what is the self-serving narrative?

* Otto Pohl writes: “Instead of asking why Jews were disproportionately involved in the terror apparatus of the Soviet regime from 1918 to 1938 should not the conclusion be that such involvement was morally wrong and that proper apologies and restitution should be made?”

The Cofnas Critique is an analysis of one book by Kevin MacDonald. It is not an essay apportioning moral blame by race. It would be absurd to expect a critique of a book of evolutionary psychology to absorb itself with deciding how immoral Jews were in a particular time and place and how much they need to apologize and make amends.

What kind of academic paper proceeds along the lines that Otto Pohl lays out? “Instead of asking why… should not the conclusion be that such involvement was morally wrong and that proper apologies and restitution should be made.” I can’t think of any respected and influential academic papers that operates on these lines. Please name some. Can you imagine a paper on the role of derivatives in the GFC (Global Financial Crash of 2008) beginning with a statement that derivatives are morally wrong and then laying out proper apologies and restitution? Can you imagine an academic paper on the extinction of dinosaurs beginning with a statement that extinction is morally wrong and then laying out proper apologies and restitution? Can you imagine an academic analysis of George W. Bush’s foreign policy beginning with a statement that Bush’s policies were morally wrong and then laying out proper apologies and restitution? Can you imagine an academic paper on the rise and fall of smog in Los Angeles beginning with a statement that smog is morally wrong and then laying out proper apologies and restitution?

By many measures, Jews have been disproportionately involved in American foreign policy, what some would call a “terror apparatus.” They’ve also been disproportionately involved in similar roles in England, Canada, Australia and most first world countries. By some measures, Jews played a disproportionate role in Germany’s WWI efforts, even developing poison gas for the Kaiser. If they had not been excluded by the Nazis, Jews would have played a disproportionate role in Germany’s WWII struggle. This disproportionate role is exactly what one would expect from the Default Hypothesis. To begin an academic paper with moral condemnation of a race and then proceeding with apologies and plans for restitution is bizarre.

It doesn’t sound like Otto Pohl read the book The Culture of Critique: An Evolutionary Analysis of Jewish Involvement in Twentieth-Century Intellectual and Political Movements.

* Otto Pohl writes: “Why a disproportionately large number of Jews including very prominent ones like Bela Kun, Genrikh Yagoda, Lazar Kaganovich, Genrikh Liushkov, Izrael Leplevski, Matvei Berman, Boris Berman, and many other Jews were involved in large scale crimes against humanity in the USSR is not the most interesting question to me. Rather the fact that while Germans, Ukrainians, Lithuanians, Latvians, Estonians, Hungarians, and others have been held collectively responsible for crimes against Jews that Jewish crimes against Germans, Ukrainians, Lithuanians, Koreans, and others have been completely de-ethnicized. This is true even when the Jewish state of Israel has openly harbored Stalinist murderers from justice like Solomon Morel and Nachman Dusanski.[2] This blatant double standard rather than the reasons that the Jews in the USSR, Poland, Hungary, Romania, and Czechoslovakia were disproportionately involved in communist crimes against humanity should be the real focus of scholarship.”

One has to judge a critique by its stated purpose. Cofnas is critiquing a book by MacDonald. Otto Pohl prefers that Nathan Cofnas direct his scholarship to other things than analyzing a particular Kevin MacDonald book. That’s Otto’s right, but it is not a basis for criticizing this Cofnas paper.

Otto raises interesting points above and they deserve analysis (even if they don’t have much to do with the Cofnas Critique). One response that immediately comes to mind is that perhaps the proportion of Jews carrying out Stalin’s mass murders was significantly smaller than the proportion of Germans carrying out Hitler’s mass murders.

Otto argues that this “blatant double standard [in favor of Jews].. should be the real focus of scholarship.” Also, he argues “should not the conclusion be that such [Jewish] involvement [in Soviet genocides] was morally wrong and that proper apologies and restitution should be made?”

What Otto seeks is morally outraged scholarship directed by his set of values. In other words, he wants political and social advocacy in the form of scholarship. That’s great in its place, but it is not the genre of the Cofnas Critique. To castigate the Cofnas Critique for not beginning with moral outrage at Soviet Jewish communists and proceeding to abject apologies and plans for restitution to the goyim is like blaming the hymn Amazing Grace for not being rap. You don’t read a love letter the same way you read an electricity bill. The Cofnas Critique and J’Accuse are different genres. Similarly, Lucy S. Dawidowicz’s 1986 book The War Against the Jews: 1933-1945 is not conventional history but special pleading. Judged by the standards of scholarship, it is rubbish. As a womanly work of ethnic advocacy, it is persuasive to those who want to be persuaded.

* Otto Pohl writes: “The vast literature on middle man minorities which include not only Jews, but Chinese in South East Asia, Lebanese and Syrians in West Africa, Asian Indians in East Africa, Armenians and Greeks in the Ottoman Empire, and Baltic Germans in the Russian Empire largely explains their overrepresentation in certain occupations and political movements. None of this literature which is quite mainstream and includes very accessible authors like Sowell, Chua, and Slezkine makes reference to IQ as an explanatory factor.”

“Vast literature” doesn’t explain anything. “Vast literature” may contain explanations which have to be judged on their own merits. If this “vast literature” does not mention IQ as an explanatory variable for economic success, then this vast literature is illiterate and innumerate. IQ is the single most easily measured, replicable, and predictive variable when it comes to success (as measured by length of life, educational attainment, low criminality, earning, stability, etc). See the new book At Our Wits’ End: Why We’re Becoming Less Intelligent and What it Means for the Future:

…intelligence is a vital predictor of life outcomes, correlating with school results at 0.7, university performance at 0.5, and postgraduate performance at 0.4. It correlates with salary at 0.3 and is an important predictor of occupational status.

Slate published an essay by two Psychology professors Apr. 14, 2014:

IQ predicts many different measures of success. Exhibit A is evidence from research on job performance by the University of Iowa industrial psychologist Frank Schmidt and his late colleague John Hunter. Synthesizing evidence from nearly a century of empirical studies, Schmidt and Hunter established that general mental ability—the psychological trait that IQ scores reflect—is the single best predictor of job training success, and that it accounts for differences in job performance even in workers with more than a decade of experience. It’s more predictive than interests, personality, reference checks, and interview performance. Smart people don’t just make better mathematicians, as Brooks observed—they make better managers, clerks, salespeople, service workers, vehicle operators, and soldiers.

IQ predicts other things that matter, too, like income, employment, health, and even longevity. In a 2001 study published in the British Medical Journal, Scottish researchers Lawrence Whalley and Ian Deary identified more than 2,000 people who had taken part in the Scottish Mental Survey of 1932, a nationwide assessment of IQ. Remarkably, people with high IQs at age 11 were more considerably more likely to survive to old age than were people with lower IQs. For example, a person with an IQ of 100 (the average for the general population) was 21 percent more likely to live to age 76 than a person with an IQ of 85. And the relationship between IQ and longevity remains statistically significant even after taking SES into account. Perhaps IQ reflects the mental resources—the reasoning and problem-solving skills—that people can bring to bear on maintaining their health and making wise decisions throughout life. This explanation is supported by evidence that higher-IQ individuals engage in more positive health behaviors, such as deciding to quit smoking…

Given everything that social scientists have learned about IQ and its broad predictive validity, it is reasonable to make it a factor in decisions such as whom to hire for a particular job or admit to a particular college or university. In fact, disregarding IQ—by admitting students to colleges or hiring people for jobs in which they are very likely to fail—is harmful both to individuals and to society. For example, in occupations where safety is paramount, employers could be incentivized to incorporate measures of cognitive ability into the recruitment process.

Professor Linda Gottfredson wrote:

1. IQ (as long as it’s a good measure of g) predicts a broad range of life outcomes better than does SES [socio-economic status], from GPA to longevity. Corollary: You can wash out IQ’s apparent predictive superiority only if you load your SES battery with additional surrogates for parents’ or own g.

2. The phenotypic correlations between IQ and measures of social class (education, occupational prestige, income) are from a half to two-thirds genetic in origin.

3. SES cannot explain the big IQ differences among siblings growing up in the same household: They differ two-thirds as much in IQ, on the average (11-12 points), as do any two random strangers (~17 points). This is a glaring fact that SES enthusiasts have studiously ignored.

4. Adult functional literacy (e.g., see the fed’s NALS survey) predicts life outcomes in exactly the same pattern as does IQ, though they won’t tell you that. Functional literacy is measured by having subjects carry out everyday life tasks, such as using a menu to figure out the price for something. Persons scoring at levels 1-2 (out of 5) have been described as not having the ability to use their rights or meet their responsibilities in the modern world (40% of whites, 80% of blacks). Pick out a few NALS tasks at various levels and ask your critic what % of adults s/he thinks can perform them. They will be shocked and so will you when you see the data–go to my 1997 “Why g matters” article for NALS, or my 2002 “highly general and highly practical” chapter for health literacy items–e.g., on diabetes.

5. IQ predicts on-the-job performance better overall than any other single predictor (SES isn’t even in the running), it predicts better when performance is objectively rather than subjectively measured, and when the tasks/occupations are more complex in what they require workers to do. At the same cognitive complexity level, IQ predicts job performance equally well in manual and non-manual jobs (e.g., trades vs. clerical. The exact same complexity pattern is found with functional literacy–the hardest items are the most complex (require more inference, are abstract rather than concrete, contain more distracting irrelevant information, etc.)

6. A large followup of Australian veterans found that IQ was the best predictor of death by age 40 (had 50+ predictors). Vehicle fatalities were the biggest cause (as is typical), and, compared to men with IQs of 100+, men of IQ85-100 had twice the rate and men IQ 80-85 had three times the rate. (Remember, SES could not explain this.) The US (and apparently Australia) forbid induction of persons below IQ 80 because they are not sufficiently trainable–found out the hard way.

7. Finally, if you succeed in describing g as a general learning and reasoning ability (one that gives high g people an increasing edge when tasks are more complex), then it is easy to show g’s life and death relevance when you describe how health self-care and accident prevention are highly dependent on learning and reasoning. Consider what it takes to be an effective diabetic–lots and lots of judgment on a daily basis, or you’re likely to lose your sight, your limbs, etc.

Gottfredson wrote:

Of all human traits, variation in general intelligence (g) is the functionally most important in modern life. The first question that behavior genetics tackled was ‘‘how heritable are within-group differences in intelligence?’’—the answer: ‘‘very.’’

Gottfredson wrote:

If all 13‐year‐olds took the same 15‐minute test (WASI), I could give you each child’s odds for all these adult outcomes without knowing anything else about them.
– Drops out of high school,
– Holds mostly unskilled jobs, skilled jobs vs. professional jobs
– Performs those jobs well
– Lives in poverty AND
– Can find a particular intersection on a map, or grams of carbohydrate per serving on a food label
– Adheres to a medical treatment regimen for diabetes or other chronic illness
– Dies prematurely

Gottfredson wrote:

The first step in assessing the real-life importance of g/IQ is to determine whether scores on highly g-loaded tests (tests that measure g well) predict differences in valued life outcomes. Correlations do not prove causation, but they are a first step in doing so. The most studied outcomes are performance in school (such as school marks and achievement test scores), performance on the job (mostly supervisor ratings), socioeconomic advancement (level of education, occupation, and income), and social pathology (adult criminality, poverty, unemployment, dependence on welfare, children outside of marriage). The relations of intelligence to health, health behavior, resilience in the face of extreme adversity, longevity (length of life), and functional literacy (the ability to do routine reading, writing, and arithmetic tasks in modern societies) have also begun to draw much attention. Thousands of studies have looked at the impact of mental abilities on school and job performance, and large national longitudinal studies in both Europe and the United States have shown that IQ is related to various forms of socioeconomic success and failure. Here are their most general findings about g’s association with life outcomes.

Correlations with IQ are pervasive. IQ predicts all the foregoing outcomes to some degree. Subjective well-being (happiness) is the rare exception: it is regularly found not to correlate meaningfully with IQ level. In general, g relates more to instrumental behavior than emotional reactions.

Correlations with IQ vary systematically by type of outcome. IQ’s predictive value ranges widely, depending on the outcome in question. For example, when averaged over several years, performance on standardized tests of academic achievement correlates about as highly with IQ as two IQ tests do with each other (over .8 on a scale of -1.0 to 1.0). In contrast, correlations with IQ are closer to .6-.7 for school marks, years of education completed, and longevity. They are about .5 with prestige level of occupation, .3 to .4 with income (the correlations rising with age), and .2 with law-abidingness.

Correlations with IQ are higher when tasks are more complex. To illustrate, when jobs are ranked in overall complexity of work, the correlations between IQ and job performance rise from .2 for simple, unskilled jobs, to .5 in middle-level jobs (skilled trades, most clerical work), to .8 in the most complex (doctors, engineers, top executives). Stated another way, it matters little how intelligent workers are in low-level jobs, but it matters a great deal in high-level jobs, regardless of whether the job seems academic or not.

IQ/g is best single predictor, mental or non-mental. IQ/g usually predicts major life outcomes better than does any other single predictor in broad samples of individuals. For example, whether IQ predicts strongly (educational performance) or weakly (law-abidingness), it predicts better than does social class background…

Social privilege theory also predicts that the impact of environmental conditions will accumulate with age, but longitudinal studies show that IQ actually becomes more heritable over the life span (from 40% before entering elementary school to 80% by mid-adulthood). Perhaps most surprising of all, differences in family advantage have no lasting effect on IQ by adolescence, at least in the U.S. and Europe, so family members are no more alike in IQ by adulthood than their genetic relatedness would predict…To take one example, the post-World War II communist government of Warsaw, Poland, assigned families of all social classes to the same housing, schools, and health services, but this social leveling failed to narrow intelligence differences in the next generation…

The pattern is that, when two groups differ in average IQ, the proportions of their populations found at each point on the IQ distribution differ most at the extremes, or tails, of the IQ distribution. This is seen most clearly by looking at the ratios in the bottom three rows of Figure 3. Take, for example, blacks and whites above IQ 100. Blacks become progressively rarer, relative to whites, at higher IQ levels: 1:3 above IQ 100, 1:7 above IQ 110, and only 1:30 above IQ 125…

IQ 75 signals the ability level below which individuals are not likely to master the elementary school curriculum or function independently in adulthood in modern societies. They are likely to be eligible for special educational services in school and for Supplemental Security Income (SSI) from the U.S. government, which is financial support provided to mentally and physically disabled adults. Of course, many do marry, hold a job, raise children, and otherwise function adequately as adults. However, their independence is precarious because they have difficulty getting and keeping jobs that pay a living wage. They are difficult to train except for the simplest tasks, so they are fortunate in industrialized nations to get any paying job at all. While only 1 out of 50 Asian-Americans faces such risk, Figure 3 shows that 1 out of 6 black- Americans does.

IQ 85 is a second important minimum threshold because the U.S. military sets its minimum enlistment standards at about this level. Although the military is often viewed as the employer of last resort, this minimum standard rules out almost half of blacks (44%) and a third of Hispanics (34%), but far fewer whites (13%) and Asians (8%). The U.S. military has twice experimented with recruiting men of IQ 80-85 (the first time on purpose and the second time by accident), but both times it found that such men could not master soldiering well enough to justify their costs. Individuals in this IQ range are not considered mentally retarded and they therefore receive no special educational or social services, but their poor learning and reasoning abilities mean that they are not competitive for many jobs, if any, in the civilian economy. They live at the edge of unemployability in modern nations, and the jobs they do get are typically the least prestigious and lowest paying: for example, janitor, food service worker, hospital orderly, or parts assembler in a factory.

IQ 85 is also close to the upper boundary for Level 1 functional literacy, the lowest of five levels in the U.S. government’s 1992 National Adult Literacy Survey (NALS). Adults at this literacy level are typically able to carry out only very simple tasks, such as locating the expiration date on a driver’s license or totaling a bank deposit slip, but they typically cannot perform more difficult tasks, such as locating two particular pieces of information in a sports article (Level 2), writing a brief letter explaining an error in a credit card bill (Level 3), determining correct change using information in a menu (Level 4), or determining shipping and total costs on an order form for items in a catalog (Level 5). Most routine communications with businesses and social service agencies, including job applications, are thus beyond the capabilities of persons with only Level 1 literacy. Their problem is not that they cannot read the words, but that they are not able to understand or use the ideas that the words convey…

IQ 105 can be viewed as the minimum threshold for achieving moderately high levels of success. It has been estimated to be the point at which individuals have a 50-50 chance of doing well enough in secondary school to be admitted to a four-year university in the United States. People above this level are highly competitive for middle-level jobs (clerical, crafts and repair, sales, police and firefighting), and they are good contenders for the lower tiers of managerial and professional work (supervisory, technical, accounting, nursing, teaching). Figure 3 shows that Asian-Americans are 6-7 times more likely than blacks to exceed the IQ 105 threshold. The percentages are 53%, 40%, 27%, and 8%, respectively, for Asians, whites, Hispanics, and blacks.

IQ 115 marks the ability threshold for being competitive as a candidate for graduate or professional school in the U.S. and thus for high levels of socioeconomic success. Partly because of their higher educational promise, individuals above this IQ level have the best prospects for gaining the most coveted occupational positions in a society. This is the IQ range in which individuals can be self-instructing and are, in fact, expected to instruct, advise, and supervise others in their community and work environments. This is therefore the IQ range from which cultural leaders tend to emerge and be recruited. The percentages exceeding this threshold are, respectively, 40% (Asians), 28% (whites), 10% (Hispanics), and 4% (blacks).

* Otto Pohl writes: “Cofnas makes no reference to other comparable middle man minorities and thus does not deal with this huge problem in his Judeocentric approach.”

Cofnas has a word limit for his paper and the broad topic of middleman minorities is not necessary to his critique of Kevin MacDonald. The Cofnas Critique is Judeocentric in that its task is to examine the claims made by Kevin MacDonald in his famous Jewish trilogy. How could a response to that trilogy be anything but Judeocentric?

* Otto Pohl writes: “Instead of dealing with the middle man literature regarding economic overrepresentation of Jews, Chinese, Greeks, Lebanese, Indians, and other diaspora groups Cofnas seeks to focus on individual Jews in intellectual movements.”

The Cofnas Critique has one primary purpose — to examine Kevin MacDonald’s book Culture of Critique. That’s it.

Otto Pohl fails to show a single error of fact or logic in the Cofnas Critique.

* Otto Pohl writes: “But, the most important political movement to have a disproportionate Jewish influence is communism. Cofnas has a short section devoted to Poland in 1949 after most of the Jews surviving the Holocaust from Poland had already left to Palestine to engage in a war of ethnic cleansing against the Arabs.[4] He does not, however, deal with the much more important and larger case of the USSR especially in the years 1918 to 1938 when their overrepresentation in the highest echelons of the organs of terror were at extraordinary levels. This is a huge oversight.”

How is this an oversight in a paper critiquing the book Culture of Critique?

* Otto Pohl writes: “The overrepresentation of certain ethnic groups in various professions is well established despite its complete neglect by Cofnas.”

That is not the topic of the Cofnas Critique.

J. Otto Pohl blogs:

A Preliminary Critique of the Cofnas Critique
A Preliminary Critique of the Cofnas Critique
J. Otto Pohl, PhD
Nathan Cofnas seeks to explain Jewish disproportionate overrepresentation in various 20th century leftwing movements as being solely the result of higher average IQ and geographical concentration in urban areas. He completely ignores the role of affinity networks, in group ethnic preference, and the creation of economic niches by certain ethnic groups most notably middle man minorities as well documented in the scholarship of Thomas Sowell, Amy Chua, John Armstrong, Daniel Chirot, Anthony Reid, and Yuri Slezkine to name just a few, none of whom are mentioned at all by Cofnas.[1] Instead he merely cherry picks examples from McDonald and seeks to show that Jews were equally involved in non-leftwing movements and that this somehow proves that the disproportionate role of Jews in leftwing movements such as communism is explicable entirely by IQ and geography and has absolutely nothing to do with any other possible factors.

Before tackling the main issue of Cofnas falsely claiming that IQ differences between ethno-racial groups is the “default hypothesis” in academia I would like to note that this is largely a false question and one that creates a self-serving narrative. Instead of asking why Jews were disproportionately involved in the terror apparatus of the Soviet regime from 1918 to 1938 should not the conclusion be that such involvement was morally wrong and that proper apologies and restitution should be made? Why a disproportionately large number of Jews including very prominent ones like Bela Kun, Genrikh Yagoda, Lazar Kaganovich, Genrikh Liushkov, Izrael Leplevski, Matvei Berman, Boris Berman, and many other Jews were involved in large scale crimes against humanity in the USSR is not the most interesting question to me. Rather the fact that while Germans, Ukrainians, Lithuanians, Latvians, Estonians, Hungarians, and others have been held collectively responsible for crimes against Jews that Jewish crimes against Germans, Ukrainians, Lithuanians, Koreans, and others have been completely de-ethnicized. This is true even when the Jewish state of Israel has openly harbored Stalinist murderers from justice like Solomon Morel and Nachman Dusanski.[2] This blatant double standard rather than the reasons that the Jews in the USSR, Poland, Hungary, Romania, and Czechoslovakia were disproportionately involved in communist crimes against humanity should be the real focus of scholarship.

The vast literature on middle man minorities which include not only Jews, but Chinese in South East Asia, Lebanese and Syrians in West Africa, Asian Indians in East Africa, Armenians and Greeks in the Ottoman Empire, and Baltic Germans in the Russian Empire largely explains their overrepresentation in certain occupations and political movements. None of this literature which is quite mainstream and includes very accessible authors like Sowell, Chua, and Slezkine makes reference to IQ as an explanatory factor. Instead the historical cultural practices of these groups and their differences from the peasant majorities of their host societies is emphasized. The role and overrepresentation of Greeks and Armenians in the Ottoman Empire was in the exact same fields as Jews in Europe and North America. Yet the average IQ of Greece is only 92, Armenia is 94, versus 110 for Ashkenazi Jews. The surrounding Turkish population that lived around the Greeks and Armenians is 90 not significantly lower. Likewise Asian Indians have dominated in many of these same positions in Africa and the Caribbean. This despite that the average IQ of India is only 82. Lebanese fill a similar economic role in West Africa with an average national IQ also of 82.[3] Cofnas makes no reference to other comparable middle man minorities and thus does not deal with this huge problem in his Judeocentric approach.

Instead of dealing with the middle man literature regarding economic overrepresentation of Jews, Chinese, Greeks, Lebanese, Indians, and other diaspora groups Cofnas seeks to focus on individual Jews in intellectual movements. But, the most important political movement to have a disproportionate Jewish influence is communism. Cofnas has a short section devoted to Poland in 1949 after most of the Jews surviving the Holocaust from Poland had already left to Palestine to engage in a war of ethnic cleansing against the Arabs.[4] He does not, however, deal with the much more important and larger case of the USSR especially in the years 1918 to 1938 when their overrepresentation in the highest echelons of the organs of terror were at extraordinary levels. This is a huge oversight.

The highest echelons of the NKVD between 1934 and late 1938 ranged from a high of 39% Jewish in October 1936 to a low of 21% Jewish in September 1938 shortly before most of them were purged despite the fact that less than 2% of the total Soviet population was Jewish. After their purge they were overrepresented by a factor of about double their percentage in the population the same level of overrepresentation Germans had in 1934.[5] This is a far higher percentage than be accounted for by the differences in IQ and urbanization between Ashkenazi Jews and Russians and Ukrainians. It is easiest accounted for by affinity networks, in group preference in recruiting, and given the importance of the political police in Stalin’s USSR, the success of Soviet Jews as the dominant middle man minority in the state. Especially since the very highest official of the NKVD during 1934 to 1936, Genrikh Yagoda was himself Jewish. It is also a time period when the NKVD engaged in the massive arrest and execution of innocent civilians including hundreds of thousands of Poles, Germans, Latvians, and Finns targeted on the basis of their ethno-racial identity.[6] In addition to the national operations this period of time also saw the massive ethnic cleansing of over 172,000 ethnic Koreans from the Soviet Far East into Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan.[7] The main overseers of these crimes were ethnic Jews. In the case of the Polish and German operations Izrael Leplevski and Boris Berman the heads of the Ukrainian and Belorussian NKVD branches. In the case of the forced resettlement of Koreans and creation of a whites only Soviet Far East, Genrikh Liushkov, head of the NKVD in the region.

The national operations specifically targeted Poles, Germans, Latvians, Finns, and other diaspora groups, but not Jews.[8] As a result the proportion of Jews arrested during the great terror was just slightly above their representation in the Soviet population as a whole versus the extremely high levels of racially targeted groups like Poles, Germans, Latvians, and Finns. The Great Terror which saw the vast majority of executions by the Soviet state occurred in 1937-1938. Between 1921 and 1953 the Cheka and its successors the GPU, OGPU, NKVD, and MVD sentenced a recorded 799,455 people to death of which 681,692 took place in the two years of 1937 and 1938.[9] The national operations such as the “Polish Operation”, the “German Operation”, and the “Latvian Operation” targeting alleged operatives of these foreign states and falling largely upon their diaspora populations in the USSR accounted for 247,157 of these death sentences despite the fact that collectively these groups only made up 1.7% of the Soviet population.[10] Thus already before World War II Soviet persecution had taken on a distinctly ethno-racial basis against diaspora groups, but Jews were not one of the groups targeted for disproportionate arrest and execution.

Out of a total of 1,420,711 arrests in the USSR from 1 January 1936 to 1 July 1938 Russians and Ukrainians were underrepresented and Germans, Poles, Latvians, and Finns overrepresented. Russians constituted 657,799 arrests or 43.6% while they made up 58.4% of the Soviet population. Ukrainians with 189,410 arrests came in at 13.3% versus 16.5% of the total population. Germans with only 0.8% of the population racked up 75,331 or 5.3% of arrests or 6.625 times their proportion of the population. Poles with 105,485 arrests 7.4% of the total were only 0.4% of the population and overrepresented by a factor of 18.5. Latvians constituted 21,392 arrests or 1.5% compared to their 0.1% of the population an overrepresentation by a factor of 15. Finally, Finns with 10,678 arrests or 0.7% compared to 0.1% of the population were overrepresented by a factor of 7. Jews in contrast with 30,545 arrests or 2.1% of the total were just slightly overrepresented since they made up 1.8% of the Soviet population.[11] Contrary to the myth that Jews were especially targeted for persecution in the USSR the number arrested during the Great Terror does not greatly exceed their proportion in the population as a whole whereas Germans, Poles, Finns, and Latvians were all overrepresented by factors ranging from 6.6 to 18.5 times.

The percentages of diasporas in the leadership of the NKVD does not mean that much when it comes to Poles, Latvians, and Germans since the total numbers involved are so small. Compared to the Jews the total number of these other diaspora groups in the NKVD was much lower although Latvians and Poles were significantly overrepresented. Latvians were the highest reaching 9% of the NKVD highest ranks in October 1936 or a factor of 90 although the total number of Latvians in these positions only reached 9. In contrast Poles peaked at 5.5% or overrepresented by a factor of 13.75. Although again the total number of Poles involved peaked at 5 in 1936. In July 1934 the German representation peaked at 2.08%, a total of 2 people, and an overrepresentation of 2.6 times. Whereas Jews made up 39% of the highest ranks of the NKVD or 43 people at this time, more than Russians at 30% or 33. Compared to their population as a whole Jews were overrepresented in the NKVD leadership by a factor of 21.9.[12] Thus Latvians, Germans, and Poles were all also overrepresented in the highest ranks of the NKVD. But, their total combined numbers only came to 15, or only about a third of the Jewish membership numbers. Finns were not overrepresented in the highest echelons of the NKVD leadership. But, out of all the major Western diaspora nationalities only Jews are not greatly overrepresented as victims of the Soviet state during the Great Terror of 1937-1938.

The overrepresentation of certain ethnic groups in various professions is well established despite its complete neglect by Cofnas. None of this literature mentions yet alone stresses as the main explanatory factor, IQ. This is because some of these groups like Greeks, Armenians, Indians, and Lebanese do not as a whole score very high on IQ tests especially compared to Ashkenazi Jews. It should also be stressed that some of the niches disproportionately dominated by Ashkenazi Jews as dominant middleman minorities in various countries are not ones that require very high IQ scores. This is the case of the Soviet political police where a great many of its members even at high levels had very poor Russian language and mathematical abilities (just read through the NKVD reports in the archives). Given that less than a third of them were ethnic Russians in the mid-1930s the first deficiency is not surprising. But, they are both indicative of a lack of particular skills associated with intelligence among the ranks and even officers of the organs of state terror. Thus factors other than high IQ or even urbanization would appear to account for much of the Jewish overrepresentation in certain fields, professions, and movements just as it does in the case of the overrepresentation of other middle man minorities such as Greeks, Armenians, Lebanese, Chinese, Indians, and other similar ethno-classes.

[1] Thomas Sowell, Markets and Minorities (Basic Books, 1981), Amy Chua, World on Fire: How Exporting Free Market Democracy Breeds Ethnic Hatred and Global Instability (Doubleday, 2003), Yuri Slezkine, The Jewish Century (Princeton University Press, 2004), John Armstrong, “Mobilized and Proletarian Diasporas,” The American Political Science Review, vol. 70, no. 2 (June 1976), Daniel Chirot and Anthony Reid, eds., Essential Outsiders: Chinese and Jews in the Modern Transformation of Southeast Asia and Central Europe (London: University of Washington Press, 1997).
[2] Adam LeBor, “Israel Protects Concentration Camp Boss,” The Independent, 29 December 1998. https://www.independent.co.uk/news/israel-protects-concentration-camp-boss-1194791.html And https://forum.axishistory.com/viewtopic.php?t=136382 Accessed on 10 February 2019.
[3] https://brainstats.com/average-iq-by-country.html Accessed on 10 February 2019.
[4] Mark Jan Chodakiewicz, After the Holocaust: Polish-Jewish Conflict in the Wake of World War II (Boulder, CO: East European Monographs, 2003), pp. 35-36.
[5] http://old.memo.ru/history/NKVD/kto/stattab4.htm Accessed on 10 February 2019.
[6] Terry Martin, An Affirmative Action Empire: Nations and Nationalism in the Soviet Union (London: Cornell University Press, 2001), pp. 338-339.
[7] J. Otto Pohl, “Cultural, Spatial, and Legal Displacement of the Korean Diaspora in the USSR: 1937-1945,” The Review of Korean Studies, vol. 21, no.1 (June 2018), p. 176.
[8] S.U. Alieva, ed. Tak eto bylo: Natsinal’nye repressi v SSSR, 1919-1953 gody (Moscow: Insan, 1993), vol. 1, p. 253.
[9] J. Otto Pohl, The Stalinist Penal System, (Jefferson, NC: McFarland, 1997), pp. 7-9.
[10] Martin, pp. 338-339.
[11] Viktor Krieger, Hans Kampen, and Nina Paulson, Deutsche aus Russland gestern und heute: Volk auf dem Weg (Bundesministerium des Innern und Landsmannschaft der Deutschen aus Russland, Stuttgart, 2006), p. 16.
[12] http://old.memo.ru/history/NKVD/kto/stattab4.htm Accessed on 11 February 2019.

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Is Economics A Science?

An academic emails me: “I didn’t read the book, but if Glaeser is describing it accurately then the authors have a very naive understanding of science–i.e., interminable disagreement means an activity isn’t science. Galeser points out that physicists disagree about some things in quantum mechanics, but disagreement is more extensive than that in physics and other recognized sciences. Many physicists think that string theory is untestable in principle and has no value. Ditto for supersymmetry. In evolutionary biology, behavioral genetics, linguistics, etc. researchers disagree about fundamental issues concerning theory and methodology, but few people deny that these are legitimate sciences.

That being said, I think that under the rubric of economics you can find legitimate science, nonscience, and pseudoscience. You can use mathematics to model macroeconomic trends–that’s probably the most solid science. Economists who pass off their personal value judgments as “science” are engaged in nonscience, even if they use mathematics. Economists who take it as dogma that people make decisions according to rational choice theory, and come up with clever models to explain away all counterexamples, are probably engaged in pseudoscience.

I always thought that it’s a bad idea to have a Nobel Prize in economics. (Of course there shouldn’t be Nobels for peace/literature either, but for different reasons.) In physics/medicine/chemistry the Nobel seems to play a productive role, motivating scientists to make important discoveries. Economists don’t make discoveries in the same way–they propose theories giving tentative explanations of certain phenomena, and these theories that can become more or less influential. Then they win the prize if their work happens to be influential, which can reflect more on the politics/sociology of the economics community than the intrinsic value of the work. Winning a Nobel also gives the economist extra authority to present his value judgments as science, which is unhelpful.”

Harvard Economics professor Edward Glaeser writes in the WSJ:

The authors make two main arguments against the scientific status of
economics. First, economists disagree about a lot. Second, economists
write fancy mathematical models that aren’t empirically relevant.
There is some truth to both statements. Economists do disagree, partly
because doctoral programs attract both liberals and conservatives.
Messrs. Offer and Söderberg point to surveys showing that economists
disagree over statements like “the distribution of income should be
more equal” or “the redistribution of income is a legitimate role for
government.” They note that “one would hardly expect such lack of
agreement over core issues in the application of physics, chemistry,
or biology.”

Yet disagreements do not disbar a field from being scientific. In a
recent poll of participants in a conference on quantum mechanics, for
instance, 52% believed “that physical objects have their properties
well defined prior to and independent of measurement,” and 48%
disagreed.

Moreover, the authors have chosen questions whose answers depend far
more on ideology than on economic knowledge. Economics can tell us
whether higher tax rates will reduce labor supply or how to design a
more effective tax system but not whether it is a good thing to take a
dollar from a rich man and give it to a poor man. Any social
preference for redistribution reflects ideology, not economics, and
disagreements over ideology say nothing about whether economics is a
science or not.

More telling are the disagreements that the authors cite about core
issues in macroeconomics or about the disputes between two of the
financial economists—Eugene Fama and Robert Shiller—who shared the
2013 Nobel Prize with the far less disputatious Lars Hansen.

In the case of finance, the public disputes reflect the relative
newness of the field. Mr. Fama essentially founded the empirical
branch of financial economics; he has long emphasized the efficiency
and rationality of markets. Mr. Shiller is the foremost modern analyst
of irrational exuberance. Today the mainstream of financial economics
has moved toward a middle-ground consensus that accepts that markets
are not always perfectly rational, that arbitrage is difficult but not
impossible, and that psychology does move markets.

In the case of macroeconomics, the fundamental problem is data. We
don’t have an enormously large set of recessions matched with
randomized governmental responses to those downturns. Yet we would
need such randomized control trials if we were to definitively settle
the long-standing disputes between Keynesians and their opponents.

Science is ultimately about method, not the degree of certainty.
Economics is a science whenever economists use the scientific method,
which I understand to mean Karl Popper’s process of starting with
particular facts, producing refutable hypotheses and then seeing
whether the data reject those hypotheses. Yet the public unfortunately
takes the word science to mean “certitude,” and economists (including
myself) have too often been guilty of wrapping ourselves in our
scientific mantles to make ideological pronouncements seem more
compelling. Messrs. Offer and Söderberg suggest that “policy requires
more humility” and that economists should face “some downgrading of
authority, but not all the way.” I agree with the need for humility
but would point out that politicians, pundits and ideologues of all
stripes regularly make statements with far less factual basis than
most economists.

In the book, all this discussion of economics as a science is tied up
with the authors’ discussion of the internal politics of Sweden itself
and the country’s occasional deviations from social-democratic
orthodoxy. Assar Lindbeck, a distinguished Swedish economist who the
authors claim “dominated the Nobel awards” for years, is something of
a villain in “The Nobel Factor.” The authors’ criticism of the Nobel
Prizes given to pro-market economists during the Lindbeck years is
linked to their antagonism toward Sweden’s own market reforms during
the early 1990s. Even more strangely, they blame the pro-market
policies pushed by Washington-based entities like the International
Monetary Fund and the World Bank for “a tide of corruption which
welled up in the borrowing countries.”

My own view is that Sweden’s sensible economic reforms produced a
country with both economic dynamism and a welfare state. Germany and
the Netherlands have managed the same balancing act. The social
democracies of Europe that did not reform, including France, Greece,
Italy and Spain, are in far worse shape. The idea that market-friendly
reforms lead to corruption seems implausible, especially considering
that corruption plagued the developing world long before there was a
Nobel Prize in economics.

The best role for the Nobel Prize in economics is not to advance an
ideology but rather to reinforce the requirement that economists
should play by the same rules as scientists. Many economists,
particularly Marxist economists, once disagreed with this view,
favoring dialectic over evidence. That perspective has weakened,
perhaps partially because the Nobel Prize has consistently rewarded
economists who really advanced human knowledge. This is something
worth celebrating in Sweden, and the Hart-Holmstrom prize is yet
another example of the committee supporting superb social science.

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WSJ: ‘The publisher pushed hard for admitting Jewish refugees and took two into her own home’

From the WSJ: But it wasn’t just party affiliation that made Alicia such a maverick in her family. She spurned its militant isolationism, becoming an early advocate of aiding beleaguered Britain as it faced up to Hitler alone. She even wanted to do her bit by joining a proposed squadron of women pilots ferrying badly needed supplies across the Atlantic. She had to be reminded that, having just founded Newsday, “she had an obligation . . . ‘to stay home and mind the store.’ ”

The person who issued that reprimand was her husband, Harry Guggenheim, who owned Newsday with her. He was also a flier, as well as an expert in aeronautics. For Alicia, marrying a Jew was yet another act of rebellion against her father, who had urged her into a first marriage with a “suitable” Marshall Field heir. That union lasted little more than a year, but the one with Guggenheim, himself the scion of an eminent family, endured until her death in 1963 despite stormy professional and personal episodes.

Alicia pushed hard for admitting Jewish refugees in the 1930s and ’40s and took two young Jewish children, with Rothschild connections, into her own home. More broadly, her internationalist outlook was reflected in Newsday’s content and in her own busy life. The Arlens describe trips to places like Berlin during the 1948 airlift, Ghana soon after its independence and the Soviet Union during the Khrushchev era.

The trip to the Soviet Union, in 1958, was taken in the company of Adlai Stevenson, with whom Alicia conducted a passionate affair that somehow managed not to destroy her own marriage. It seems that neither Stevenson nor her husband were eager to disrupt the status quo.

FROM WSJ: Review: ‘Protestants Abroad’ and the Gospel of Globalism
Missionary life abroad turned America’s most ardent Christians into liberal cosmopolitans.

David A. Hollinger’s “Protestants Abroad” articulates the peril and promise of American missionary zeal. While Christian missionaries of the 20th century largely failed to change the cultural, political and religious climate of countries such as India, China and Japan, they had a deep and counterintuitive effect on the U.S. Mr. Hollinger’s book explains how a century of missions abroad transformed liberal democracy at home; in the process, it makes a tacit, but convincing, argument for cosmopolitanism over sectarianism and nationalism.

At the heart of Mr. Hollinger’s elegant and original account is the “boomerang” thesis, first described by the Congregationalist leader Buell Gallagher in 1946. The missionary movement, Mr. Hollinger summarizes, “an enterprise formidably driven by ethnocentrism and cultural imperialism—and often linked closely with military, diplomatic, and economic imperialism—generated . . . a counter-reaction” that spread from missionaries themselves throughout society. The descendants of overseas missionaries who returned to the U.S. became leading liberal cosmopolitans, anti-imperialists and staunch opponents of the “America first” mentality.

Mr. Hollinger focuses instead on the rare individuals who recognized the limitations of their worldview and sought to overcome them, missionaries like E. Stanley Jones (1884-1973), the author of a memoir of his experience in India called “The Christ of the Indian Road” (1925). Jones, according to Mr. Hollinger, came to see that “American Protestants were more of an obstacle to a genuinely Christian world than Hinduism. [Jones] ascribed to Hindus the discovery that Jesus ‘was colour blind.’ ” This position, while initially controversial in the United States, came to radically transform missionary work abroad and, more generally, Americans’ perception of Asia. Jones’s book sold more than 400,000 copies in its first four years in print, and Jones was named the world’s greatest missionary by Time magazine in 1938. “Sounding like the multiculturalists of the 1990s,” Mr. Hollinger writes, “Jones endorsed the world’s cultural diversity and insisted that Christ traveled many ‘roads’ quite different from those on which Americans had made their own spiritual journeys.”

The ecumenical approach to missionary work that Jones advanced went hand in hand with what one might call a pragmatic turn in Christian missions. In 1932, the Harvard philosopher William Ernest Hocking drafted the results of a nine-month study, funded by John D. Rockefeller Jr., of Christian missions in China, Burma, India and Japan. The Hocking Report, later published as “Re-thinking Missions,” made the radical assertion that what mattered most in Christian proselytizing was not proselytizing at all; it was the educational and philanthropic work that missions performed while on site. The history of Protestants abroad is, according to Mr. Hollinger, the history of men and women thinning out the word of doctrinal Christianity in order to communicate the spirit with an ever greater cross section of humanity.

In the first decades of the 20th century, descendants of Protestant missionaries began to realize that their affiliation with the church was an obstacle to their participation in international affairs. They first took on an increasingly transdominational position, founding what Mr. Hollinger terms the “Protestant International,” a group of organizations through which mainstream denominations spoke with “a cohesive, unified voice in foreign as well as domestic affairs.” A landmark 1942 meeting of 400 Protestant leaders convened by the Federal Council of Churches “passed strongly worded resolutions against colonialism, racism, and economic exploitation, and in favor of a ‘world government.’ ” Domestically, Mr. Hollinger writes, the ecumenical Protestant International unintentionally “sharpened the conflict with . . . evangelical churches, and achieved political alliances with secular constituencies that inadvertently facilitated the later migration of a number of the most educated Protestants” out of the church altogether.

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WSJ: Can the Holocaust Be Explained?

From the WSJ in 2017: A new batch of books by Laurence Rees, Peter Hayes and David Cesarani tries to crack the puzzle: Why the Jews? And why the Germans? Josef Joffe reviews…

Why did the Germans invest ever more precious resources in mass slaughter while they were already losing the war? Why finish off the Jews rather than save the Reich?

Opportunity costs are a legend, Mr. Hayes argues, for mega-murder hardly put a dent into the war effort. He marshals astounding numbers in making this compelling case. In 1942-44, the regime used just two trains per day on average to move three million people to the camps. Compare that to the 30,000 trains per day the Reichsbahn ran overall in 1941-42. In 1944, when the U.S. and the Soviet Union were closing in, extinction still came cheap: three trains per day to deport 440,000 Hungarian Jews in eight weeks.

The annihilation of the Jews was “low-overhead, low-tech and self-financing.” The victims had to pay for their railroad tickets to extinction, while the SS made a fortune on renting out their doomed slaves to industry.

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