A Genuine Person

Back in the early ’70’s, I was working in the music industry in Nashville. One of places I worked was small studio that a musician had set up in his garage. It was equipped with hand-me-down gear retired from other studios. The console was a pastiche of vacuum tube and early transistor modules in a rather tall wood enclosure. I sounded great, but I could just barely see over it when sitting down.

As I was setting up for a demo session one evening (A demo is a simple recording of a song used to pitch it to singers for them to record.), the songwriter walked into the control room. She wasn’t very tall, and seated at the console, all I could see of her was that she was a cute brunette with a short haircut. It wasn’t until she came around the console and stood next to me that I realized she was Dolly Parton.

I very much enjoyed that session. In an industry where too many stars and wannabe stars are legends in their own minds, Dolly Parton was a nice person, a pleasure to work with. And sensible.

I was reminded of her good sense when I read a post by Suzanne Venker titled Of Course Dolly’s Not a Feminist. She Loves Men. (The periods are in the title.). The post is based on an NPR podcast called Dolly Parton’s America, and the apparent inability of the podcast’s host to understand why Dolly Parton isn’t a feminist.

In Dolly Parton’s America, Parton proves in spades that there’s a much more positive and compassionate attitude to have toward men, women and relationships. But if you want to adopt it, you can’t simultaneously pay homage to a group that assumes the worst of half the population. And you can’t take life so seriously.

But you can work hard and use your talent. And be a pleasure to work with.

There Are Differences

Why are the so many more men than women in jail? Why are there so many more women in nursing and men in engineering? The answer is that while both men and women are the same in terms of intelligence and other mental traits on average, the standard deviations are not the same for both sexes for all traits. Thus, because the standard deviation for agreeableness is narrower for men, it is likely that at the extremes of the population more men will be disagreeable and wind up as criminals or will be more interested in things than people and wind up as engineers. A similar difference in the standard deviations for general intelligence means that men make up the majority of morons and the majority of geniuses.

Stacy McCain has a post up about the censorship of a politically incorrect presentation made by a scientist from CERN who took notice of the relative lack of women in the field of nuclear physics.

Evidence of innate behavioral differences between men and women (i.e., in terms of group averages) has certainly not been “discredited.” Herrnstein and Murray have explained in The Bell Curve that average group differences are not predictive of any individual’s ability. However, when institutions start implementing “diversity” formulae based on numerical representation of groups, we discover that these differences matter very much. When activists complain that certain groups are “underrepresented” in some area, and turn this into a political grievance, the result is likely to be an erosion of standards and the use of deliberate discrimination to achieve a more “diverse” outcome. Institutions are hijacked for a political agenda, so that CERN — which presumably should be devoted to pursuing advancements in nuclear physics — is now instead expected to “encourage women” and “promote diversity.” This is similar to the mentality that produced the Atlanta public school cheating scandal.

Read the whole thing.

Life is becoming like a series of scenes from old Monty Python episodes. Nobody Everybody expects the Spanish Feminist Inquisition!