Warm and salty

…from the quill of Antisthenes the Younger

Some people are surprised by the number of those accepting Anthropogenic Global Warming (Climate change in the gore-speak) propaganda. Perhaps the following excerpt will make it clearer, if not more palatable. The Times:

In their painstaking research project professor Philip Adey and his colleague, psychology professor Michael Shayer, compared results of today’s children with those of children who took exactly the same test in the mid-1990s and also 30 years ago. While most exams have changed (been made easier, if you listen to the critics) this one is the same as it was in 1976 when pupils first chewed their pencils over the problems.

In the easiest question, children are asked to watch as water is poured up to the brim of a tall, thin container. From there the water is tipped into a small fat glass. The tall vessel is refiled. Do both beakers now hold the same amount of water? “It’s frightening how many children now get this simple question wrong,” says scientist Denise Ginsburg, Shayer’s wife and another of the research team.

Another question involves two blocks of a similar size – one of brass, the other of plasticine. Which would displace the most water when dropped into a beaker? Children are asked. Two years ago fewer than a fifth came up with the right answer.

In 1976 a third of boys and a quarter of girls scored highly in the tests overall; by 2004, the figures had plummeted to just 6% of boys and 5% of girls. These children were on average two to three years behind those who were tested in the mid-1990s.

It is shocking,” says Adey. “The general cognitive foundation of 11 and 12-year-olds has taken a big dip. There has been a continuous decline in the last 30 years and it is carrying on now.”

But what exactly is being lost? Is it really general intelligence or simply a specific understanding of scientific concepts such as volume and density? Both, say the researchers. The tests reveal both general intelligence – “higher level brain functions” – and a knowledge that is “the bedrock of science and maths” says Ginsburg. In fact it’s nothing less than the ability of children to handle new, difficult ideas.

Such as saltiness of salt.

And in The Guardian of 24 January, 2006 http://www.guardian.co.uk/education/2006/jan/24/schools.uk : –

“It’s a staggering result,” admits Shayer, whose findings will be published next year in the British Journal of Educational Psychology. “Before the project started, I rather expected to find that children had improved developmentally. This would have been in line with the Flynn effect on intelligence tests, which shows that children’s IQ levels improve at such a steady rate that the norm of 100 has to be recalibrated every 15 years or so. But the figures just don’t lie. We had a sample of over 10,000 children and the results have been checked, rechecked and peer reviewed.”

Those children are now eighteen and voting. And the Left everywhere pushes for lowering of the voting age on the grounds that today’s generation matures earlier.

About Antisthenes

A Greek philosopher, a pupil of Socrates. Led a revolt, with Diogenes, against the demands of the city-state and the sophistication of life. Accepted the interrelation of knowledge, virtue, and happiness; and sought the ideal condition for happiness in return to primitivism and self-sufficiency. Rejected all social distinctions as based on convention, scorned orthodox religion as a fabrication of lies, and studied early legends and animal life in order to arrive at a true understanding of natural law. The individual was free and self-sufficient when he was master of his passions, secure in his intelligence, impervious to social or religious demands, and satisfied with the poverty of a mendicant. Needless to say, a person who on the Fog of Chaos adopted the Athenian philosopher's name has nothing whatsoever in common with him.
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3 Responses to Warm and salty

  1. Mouser says:

    If the number of teenage single mothers is any indication, this generation certainly matures earlier.

  2. Taurus says:

    Not only IQ, but the sperm count is also going down.

  3. Mauser says:

    A very interesting article in Quadrant on computers in our schools –
    “Back to skool with Julia and Kevin “http://www.quadrant.org.au/blogs/qed/2012/01/back-to-skool

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