Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search

 


Jim Flynn against eugenics

http://alliance.org.nz/blog/?p=90

July 10th, 2007
Jim Flynn against eugenics

A report appeared in the Sunday Star Times (8 July 2007) where Professor Jim Flynn was wrongly identified as supporting the idea of “eugenics.”

Jim Flynn is Alliance spokesperson on finance and tax, although the article was not related in any way to the Alliance.

Jim Flynn appeared on Close Up last night Monday 9 July and in a live interview strongly denied any such views. For those of you with broadband internet, you may wish to see the interview which can be found at TVNZ.

Jim is internationally known for his academic research into IQ and has consistently argued against eugenics and racist ideas in his work. He has consistently supported social measures to reduce inequality and improve life for all people, not just the wealthy.

Below Jim Flynn explains his position in the debate.

Flynn and Eugenics

“This is a classic case of when you state a position in order to argue against it, you get identified with it. I do not think the differential birth rates of university educated and other people is important and I think it would be ridiculous to treat it as a “problem” to be solved. When I am faced with people with a eugenics programme who believe the contrary, I argue with them as follows. I think you will see how my arguments can be converted into the stuff that has appeared in the press. Those of you that watched close up know that I put an end to that.

(1) The correlation between university education and IQ.
THEM: Look at how important this is.
ME: It is not strong but mild. True, university cuts out the lowest 25% in IQ but thousands of bright people never go to university. This is particularly true of disadvantaged minorities.

(2) The trend over time
THEM: But ever a weak correlation would bite over 4 or 5 generations
ME: That means well over 100 years. And my own research shows that IQ is rising anyway, due to improved environment, so why get upset about such a mild negative trend.

(3) What if the environment stops improving
THEM: If that happens, you must grant that there is reason for long-term concern.
ME: I doubt it - a lot can happens over 100 years that would “cure” the problem anyway

(4) Society and its future
THEM: What could that be? Poor people have many more unplanned children than the well off. They are evicted, suffer from domestic violence, emotional stress. Their lives are chaotic and they lose control.
ME: Well, let us hope that NZ does something about all of that. Redistribution of wealth would eliminate poverty, free education would lower barriers, 20-hour per week jobs with tenure and good child care facilities would mean career women would be less likely to put off having children. All of those things should be done on their merits - and if done your so-called problem would go away. It has gone away in Socialist countries like Finland.

(5) Optimism vs. pessimism
THEM: So will NZ actually do that?
ME: It may not. There seems to be no end to our willingness to drift towards greater inequality. But even so, science over the next 100 years may come up with something (this was a prediction not a recommendation). A contraceptive that would mean that you would have to plan to have a child, not plan not to have one. It is possible that at age 10 all boys and girls would be vaccinated against having an unplanned child. There may be some who would refuse this, but the age of puberty is dropping and we may be faced with mothers and fathers of that age. I suspect that would change some minds.

(6) Injections vs. “water”
THEM: Do not injections have side-effects? And would you not need another injection to have a child?
ME: They do, but I hope these problems will be eliminated. It may be that drinking a glass of water a day would pose less of a risk - and then you could become fertile just by going off it for a month. You could have this “water” free at the super market. Putting it it the drinking water is a medical possibility but not a political one - look at the florin controversy.

(7) Good or bad
THEM: So you would welcome a scientific breakthrough?
ME: I would indeed. No more chance of getting pregnant if raped, drugged, or drunk and every child a planned child. Why not?

Judge for yourself whether this adds up to “put a contraceptive” in the drinking water tomorrow to keep poor women from breeding.”


ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell: On Drone Strikes And Judith Collins‘ Last Stand

The news that a New Zealand citizen was killed last November in a US drone attack in Yemen brings the drones controversy closer to home.

To the US, drones are a legitimate response to the threat posed by the al Qaeda organisation and its franchisees... To the US, the drones carry the added advantage of not putting US troops at risk on the ground, and minimises the need for putting them in large numbers in bases in the countries concerned, always a politically sensitive point.

The counter-argument, well articulated by security analyst Paul Buchanan on RNZ this morning, is that this particular drone attack can be said to amount to an extra-judicial execution of a New Zealand citizen by one of our military allies, in circumstances where the person concerned posed no threat to New Zealand’s domestic security. More>>

 

Parliament Today:

Policies: Labour’s Economic Upgrade For Manufacturing

Labour Leader David Cunliffe has today announced his Economic Upgrade for the manufacturing sector – a plan that will create better jobs and higher wages. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The Life And ACC Work Of Sir Owen Woodhouse

With the death of Sir Owen Woodhouse, the founding father of the Accident Compensation Scheme, New Zealand has lost one of the titans of its post-war social policy. More>>

ALSO:

Bad Transnationals: Rio Tinto Wins 2013 Roger Award

It won the 2011 Roger Award and was runner up in 2012, 2009 and 08. One 2013 nomination said simply and in its entirety: “Blackmailing country”... More>>

ALSO:

Select Committees: Tobacco Plain Packaging Hearings

The Stroke Foundation is today backing the Cancer Society and Smokefree Coalition who are making oral submissions to the Health Select Committee in support of proposed legislation to remove of all branding from tobacco products. More>>

ALSO:

Milk: Oravida Asked For Cabinet Help

New evidence released by New Zealand First today reveals Justice Minister Judith Collins used her position to manipulate the Government to help her husband’s company, Oravida, after the Fonterra botulism scare, says New Zealand First Leader Rt Hon Winston Peters. More>>

ALSO:

With Conditions: Ruataniwha Consents Approved In Draft Decision

The Tukituki Catchment Proposal Board of Inquiry has granted 17 resource consents relating to the $265 million Ruataniwha Water Storage Scheme in a draft decision that would open more of the Hawke’s Bay to irrigation. More>>

ALSO:

Fast Lanes, Campervans: Labour 'Making The Holidays Easier For Kiwi Drivers'

The next Labour Government will make the holidays easier and journeys quicker for Kiwi families driving on the roads, says Labour Leader David Cunliffe. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On Royalty And Its Tourism Spin-Offs

Ultimately the Queen’s longevity has been one of her most significant accomplishments. A transition to Prince Charles while the monarchy was in the pits of public esteem in the mid to late 1990s would have been disastrous for the Royal Firm. Far more congenial representatives have now emerged... More>>

ALSO:

Privacy (Again): ACC Demands Excessive Privacy Waivers

Labour: “This is just another example of ACC under National deliberately acting to deny treatment and compensation... Those who did fill in the form have effectively been victims of yet another ACC privacy breach. This time Judith Collins knew it was happening..." More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
Politics
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news