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SarahBell

Discussed before... Genes in the gene pool

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http://metro.co.uk/2017/01/17/intelligence-is-being-bred-out-of-the-gene-pool-6385934/?ito=facebook

 

Researchers from deCODE, a genetics firm in Iceland, found that the genes that make people predisposed to spending more years in education became rarer in the country between 1910 and 1975.

 

At the same time, the presence of more ‘education genes’ in a person means they are likely to have fewer, if any, children.

As a result, scientists proposed that the education genes had become rarer precisely because well educated people had contributed less to the gene pool.

 

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Chalk another one up to the welfare state!

A big motivation for having children throughout history has been that when they grow up they will help you.  Anything from helping out on the farm to providing food for the family to paying the rent.  If you didn't have children or other close family then you would just throw yourself onto the charity of the parish.

So education gene or no education gene having children was a very sensible strategy.

Now there isn't that benefit because the systems are in place that if find yourself all alone in the world and potless at 70 it doesn't matter; you will be comfortably housed, clothed and fed.

So if you want to spend your time pursuing your career or intellectual interests rather than raising children then you won't materially suffer as a consequence.  This is going to be more the case for those with this "education gene".

I can't see how this is going to change; it will keep falling.

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5 hours ago, hotairmail said:

Many people bemoan the loss of wonderfully talented and well off young men in the first world war as public schools and the upper and middle classes heeded the call to arms at the very beginning of the war to carry out their patriotic duty.

Not that smart then are they.

 

My grandfather was a smuggler during the war - may be that was smart.

Perhaps I can take this up a new career post Brexit. :wacko:

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Makes sense. During the good times (the welfare state probably exaggerates the impression of good times) the propagation of the species is best served by high tetisterone, low maintenance breeders. During the hard times, more intelligence needed.

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20 minutes ago, Steppenpig said:

Makes sense. During the good times (the welfare state probably exaggerates the impression of good times) the propagation of the species is best served by high tetisterone, low maintenance breeders. During the hard times, more intelligence needed.

Perhaps Brexit will wipe out the underclass. If food prices double, then it may reduce their reproductive capacity.

 

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22 hours ago, Frank Hovis said:

Chalk another one up to the welfare state!

A big motivation for having children throughout history has been that when they grow up they will help you.  Anything from helping out on the farm to providing food for the family to paying the rent.  If you didn't have children or other close family then you would just throw yourself onto the charity of the parish.

So education gene or no education gene having children was a very sensible strategy.

Now there isn't that benefit because the systems are in place that if find yourself all alone in the world and potless at 70 it doesn't matter; you will be comfortably housed, clothed and fed.

So if you want to spend your time pursuing your career or intellectual interests rather than raising children then you won't materially suffer as a consequence.  This is going to be more the case for those with this "education gene".

I can't see how this is going to change; it will keep falling.

I hope things might change on that front re. the elderly becoming dependent. You can, of course, become dependent through unavoidable ill health. But trying to figure out why some people become dependent and other not is a big one. I mentioned on another thread that my 84 year old neighbour climbs up 60 feet trees with a chainsaw. Why others succumb to frailty is something that is puzzling to the Medical Establishment when no obvious cause is there. But i think being needy and lazy has a lot to do with it.

If you set retirement at 60 and treat those folk with kid gloves they will act accordingly. I believe things will change as the retirement age accelerates and dependence will reduce with it. Certainly my grandparents generation wre very lazy when it came to activity and used age as an excuse. Now i have gotten to my fifties I see age was no excuse.

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22 hours ago, hotairmail said:

Many people bemoan the loss of wonderfully talented and well off young men in the first world war as public schools and the upper and middle classes heeded the call to arms at the very beginning of the war to carry out their patriotic duty.

Not that smart then are they.

I had an uncle who refused to fight in both wars. He always said: "I didn't see why I should kill some other poor b*stard, just because some rich f**ker told me to." He was a clever guy who from extremely humble beginnings became a self-made millionaire operating a small chain of betting shops. He left school at 11.

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On 18/01/2017 at 3:21 PM, SarahBell said:

http://metro.co.uk/2017/01/17/intelligence-is-being-bred-out-of-the-gene-pool-6385934/?ito=facebook

 

Researchers from deCODE, a genetics firm in Iceland, found that the genes that make people predisposed to spending more years in education became rarer in the country between 1910 and 1975.

 

At the same time, the presence of more ‘education genes’ in a person means they are likely to have fewer, if any, children.

As a result, scientists proposed that the education genes had become rarer precisely because well educated people had contributed less to the gene pool.

 

Perhaps it is obvious to some, but I'd point out that if there was an 'education gene' then it has probably lost any correlation with whether people actually take part in (higher) education.

I'd also add that you can't definitively say that this is 'breeding intelligence out of the population' -- I don't think there is much correlation between years spent in education and intelligence.  (Possibly such a correlation exists with educational achievement, or value obtained from education, but those weren't the metric offered)

But the interesting thing about this is, what role did this gene play prior to mass higher education?  Presumably it sat dormant in the population, with multitudes of char-women and farm-labourers dreaming of the opportunity to go to Southampton Solent to study Beauty Promotion (BA(hons)), but being stuck with a lifetime of toil.  Maybe it occasionally led to the odd monk/nun, but otherwise it would seem to have little in the way of function.  Of course, perhaps it has no historical function but to create religious advocates, who then impregnate a sufficiently large proportion of the local female population to ensure that the gene propagates.

Maybe this gene is closer to a 'imagination gene' or a 'being able to think critically gene', which would actually be useful in common society hundreds of years ago.  On the other hand, perhaps the 'education gene' is actually closer to a 'try to get away without actually having to enter the world of work for as long as possible gene' or perhaps a 'take advantage of the ability to have parties with your peers (and without children) gene' -- in which case, why would the gene now become less prevalent?

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Just the fact that someone can learn shows a form of intelligence, life itself is a long process of learning.....It just happens, but of course we all have that choice about how much we will invest into our own further self- education..... nobody requires a formal form of education with a certificate, a certificate is a certificate it will not prove how intelligence you are..... Intelligence is not what you know it is how you use what you have learned.;)

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2 hours ago, Hail the Tripod said:

I had an uncle who refused to fight in both wars. He always said: "I didn't see why I should kill some other poor b*stard, just because some rich f**ker told me to." He was a clever guy who from extremely humble beginnings became a self-made millionaire operating a small chain of betting shops. He left school at 11.

I like the idea that conscientious objectors were intelligent, ethical mavericks.

I just wish you'd have doctored your story a bit.

It so easily reads as : "While others made the ultimate sacrifice, a man-mind-thyself type made himself a fortune from immoral earnings, impoverishing vulnerable sorts who just wanted a little excitement to lighten an otherwise grindingly  dreary existence."

:P

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36 minutes ago, winkie said:

..... Intelligence is not what you know it is how you use what you have learned.;)

... otherwise known as "stupid is as stupid does".

The eponymous Forest Gump was fond of quoting his 'mammy's' saying, the implication being that, since Gump achieved both notoriety, honor and great wealth, he could not be stupid. In the movie, we see it is chance that grants Gump these gifts, not any innate quality.

Indeed, whilst the great inventor of modern advertising, Claude C Hopkins demurred from relating success to chance, he made the assertion that the ability to pursue higher education (whether through intellect of money) would likely negatively impact those pursuing success in commercial circles (and by implication, financial gain and success).

Quote

"To poverty I owe the fact that I never went to college. I spent those four years in the school of experience in stead of a school of theory. I know nothing of value which an advertising man can be taught in college. I know of many things taught there which he will need to unlearn before he can steer any practical course. Then higher education appears to me a handicap to a man whose lifetime work consists in appealing to common people." - My Life In Advertising, Claude C Hopkins

So, if you've ever wondered why you are less famous, less popular or less wealthy than Scarlet Moffat, there is your answer.

 

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1 hour ago, dgul said:

Perhaps it is obvious to some, but I'd point out that if there was an 'education gene' then it has probably lost any correlation with whether people actually take part in (higher) education.

I'd also add that you can't definitively say that this is 'breeding intelligence out of the population' -- I don't think there is much correlation between years spent in education and intelligence.  (Possibly such a correlation exists with educational achievement, or value obtained from education, but those weren't the metric offered)

But the interesting thing about this is, what role did this gene play prior to mass higher education?  

Many scientists, inventors, explorers, artists, or authors of yore seem to be random freaks of nature with a thirst for knowledge, rather than products of the educational system.

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1 hour ago, hotairmail said:

Funnily enough I am currently reading an excellent book by Tim Spector (he of 'The Diet Myth' fame).It is a book on genetics called "Identically Different - why you CAN change your genes". It covers epigenetics, heritability of characteristics and role of the environment in a number of areas including IQ.

I think he would roundly laugh at the idea of an 'education gene'. One in a long list of such pronouncements he cites in the media. There is a tendency amongst those who are successful to solely promulgate Darwinian survival of the fittest style theories to bolster the reason why it is the natural order of things that they be successful. Such ideas suck the hope from people and can stop them from applying themselves to improve their lot.

You literally can change many things with environment, diet, hard work and effort. IQ is only 60% heritable according to Spector. If the other 40% is carried down the generations by the process of epigenetics then a determined family or culture can significantly improve their intelligence down the generations. In fact it is widely proven that IQ is improving over time, so the idea that somehow that intelligent people are not breeding enough and causing the population as a whole to become more stupid seems wide of the mark.

I would think that since the advent of cities, the selection pressure of resistance to diseases has dwarfed any others. And with the proliferation of antibiotic resistant disease it will be again very soon.

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8 hours ago, Hail the Tripod said:

I had an uncle who refused to fight in both wars. He always said: "I didn't see why I should kill some other poor b*stard, just because some rich f**ker told me to." He was a clever guy who from extremely humble beginnings became a self-made millionaire operating a small chain of betting shops. He left school at 11.

The style might not be your thing, but the sentiments portrayed by hulett in this song sums up what you express her well.

 

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1 hour ago, hotairmail said:

Funnily enough I am currently reading an excellent book by Tim Spector (he of 'The Diet Myth' fame).It is a book on genetics called "Identically Different - why you CAN change your genes". It covers epigenetics, heritability of characteristics and role of the environment in a number of areas including IQ.

I think he would roundly laugh at the idea of an 'education gene'. One in a long list of such pronouncements he cites in the media. There is a tendency amongst those who are successful to solely promulgate Darwinian survival of the fittest style theories to bolster the reason why it is the natural order of things that they be successful. Such ideas suck the hope from people and can stop them from applying themselves to improve their lot.

You literally can change many things with environment, diet, hard work and effort. IQ is only 60% heritable according to Spector. If the other 40% is carried down the generations by the process of epigenetics then a determined family or culture can significantly improve their intelligence down the generations. In fact it is widely proven that IQ is improving over time, so the idea that somehow that intelligent people are not breeding enough and causing the population as a whole to become more stupid seems wide of the mark.

Darwin's ideas of natural selection, fitness and adaptation may appear to make superficial sense in the context of everyday life and markets (Darwin was strongly influenced by Malthus and Adam Smith) but they are not scientifically well-defined. The scientific foundations of organic evolution were established by Mendel, who approached the problem like a physicist, by seeking to isolate cause from effect in a reductionist, Galilean fashion. Darwin and his English contemporaries promoted instead an integrated or 'holistic' picture of heredity that made the understanding of genetics impossible. It wasn't until Mendel's work was rediscovered that biologists began to dislodge themselves from the teleological notion of evolution as progress towards a goal pre-determined by a selector. By ignoring the whole and concentrating only on those aspects of evolution that he could rigorously control Mendel divorced heredity from the unsystematic tinkering and social biases of natural historians like Darwin and re-made its study as science.

Latterday efforts to mathematise Darwinism via neoDarwinism (models of complex adaptable systems) have failed to predict or explain anything that occurs in Nature, frustrated as they are by the absence of adequate information about the locally connected links that determine the behaviour of the whole.

Darwin and his 'Victorian' companion Mr Bobo, from the Aardman animation 'The Pirates! In An Adventure with Scientists!'

960.jpg

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12 hours ago, Steppenpig said:

Many scientists, inventors, explorers, artists, or authors of yore seem to be random freaks of nature with a thirst for knowledge, rather than products of the educational system.

The "thirst for knowledge" was the motivation for going to uni for me and most of my college (as opposed to school) friends; the educational system does provide a route to this knowledge.

The majority may well, even then, have been going for career / party / don't want to work yet reasons.

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13 minutes ago, hotairmail said:

You possibly don't grasp quite how lucky you were.

 There's nothing quite so hard nor dispiriting doing something when you don't want to but you don't know what else to do. Study and work is easy when you have a calling, an interest. Those not so lucky are condemned for a number of apparent poor traits, but it isn't really their fault.

How depressing to not have an interest in anything at all...... surely there can't be many who think like that unless they are otherwise ill and or depressed...... what we have to ask ourselves is why we choose to invest valuable time and money to learn more about certain subjects, is it because knowledge of certain information is more financially lucrative? get close to the people in the know...... why do some people not wish too many others to gain certain knowledge, improve or change things, bring new ideas, remove barriers and hoops, beurucracy, red tape and hurdels? Is it because the more people who find out how simple it could be, how easy it can be done and do it creates better heahtier competition, more choices, lower prices......Make something simple, hard to gain and time consuming = protectionism of own interests.;)

 

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4 hours ago, hotairmail said:

You possibly don't grasp quite how lucky you were.

 There's nothing quite so hard nor dispiriting doing something when you don't want to but you don't know what else to do. Study and work is easy when you have a calling, an interest. Those not so lucky are condemned for a number of apparent poor traits, but it isn't really their fault.

I suppose lucky in the sense that I was really interested in a subject that happened to form part of formal education but there are many academic subjects out there; if somebody genuinely has no interest in any of them then they don't have much interest in the world about them.

I had sufficient interest in at least half a dozen subjects to have done a degree in any of them; I tend to assume that other people with inquiring minds including most on here are the same.

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