August 10, 2017

Why did Google fire James Damore?

If you read the note that went out on the 8th from Google CEO Sindar Pichai, it comes across as so conciliatory and inclusive that it's hard to understand the abrupt disinclusion of Damore.

Looking for an answer, I found this at Recode, which went up about an hour ago:
Pichai made the final decision about Damore’s fate, after what several sources with knowledge of the meeting characterized as a tough debate by top management, with initial disagreement over... what to do about Google’s continual and complex balancing act between free speech and fostering a safe workplace.... “But Sundar had to make a call about what kind of Google he wanted to stress and he did.”...

“I think the problem and also benefit of Google has been that we’ve created and encouraged an environment where everyone thinks they can say what they want, because that is what has always been the way it has been,” said another top exec. “But, at some point, if we really want to change, we have to think harder about what impact that has, especially when it makes women or others feel unsafe in the environment we have created.”...
Note that "or others" and consider this:
“It was a cordial discussion, considering the topic, and you could see how you could argue both sides on the face of it,” said one source. “But I think Damore’s focus on biology really made it clear that he had crossed the line.” What turned the tide, said sources, was when it was noted that if Damore’s dubious contentions about women’s skills were replaced by those about race or religion, there would be no debate.

In fact, [another longtime Google leader, YouTube CEO Susan Wojcicki, wrote in Fortune]: “For instance, what if we replaced the word ‘women’ in the memo with another group? What if the memo said that biological differences amongst Black, Hispanic, or LGBTQ employees explained their underrepresentation in tech and leadership roles? Would some people still be discussing the merit of the memo’s arguments or would there be a universal call for swift action against its author? I don’t ask this to compare one group to another, but rather to point out that the language of discrimination can take many different forms and none are acceptable or productive.”...

Pichai wrote to employees on Monday...: “To suggest a group of our colleagues have traits that make them less biologically suited to that work is offensive and not OK.”
Maybe what is really freaking out Google management is race. I noticed this, in Damore's discussion with Jordan B. Peterson. Damore was provoked by "super-secret" meetings about "potentially illegal practices that they've been doing to try to increase diversity... basically treating people differently based on what their race is" (pause) "or gender are" (sic):

256 comments:

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exhelodrvr1 said...

"What if the memo said that biological differences amongst Black, Hispanic, or LGBTQ employees explained their underrepresentation in tech and leadership roles?"

If there were reputable studies that pointed towards that, what if?

damikesc said...

Was he ACCURATE?

Because it seems he was.

Can Google post a list if what topics allowed to be discussed?

Earnest Prole said...

The left's denial of biological differences between the sexes is roughly equivalent to the right's denial of evolution, except the right's denial is a fringe view while the left's denial is mainstream.

Tank said...

So they fired him for something he did not say or write, but someone might in the future?

JohnAnnArbor said...

"Disinclusion"?

dbzdak said...

I don't remember the memo talking about whether anyone was "suitable" for tech work, but rather focusing on why women are less interested in tech work.

rehajm said...

what if we replaced the word ‘women’ in the memo with another group?

Conservatives? Trump supporters?

Michael K said...

They are denying the first rule of holes.

The VP of "Diversity and Inclusiveness" is a Hillary supporter as are 90% of the Google hierarchy. The other 10% keeps its mouth shut.

Earnest Prole said...

Google's decision was quite obviously based primarily on external PR considerations and not internal cultural considerations, high-minded rhetoric notwithstanding. They can't admit to it because it would bolster an employee lawsuit.

Paco Wové said...

"Damore’s focus on biology really made it clear that he had crossed the line."

Biology: beyond the pale!

Breezy said...

So what good is being a tech company if you can't utilize data and other studies to make your case? Join the debate, don't stifle it.

Paco Wové said...

"Sonny, if your squirt gun had been filled with acid instead of water, you would have really hurt somebody. I'm just protecting public safety by taking you in."

Fernandinande said...

what to do about Google’s continual and complex balancing act between free speech and fostering a safe workplace.

No. The "complex balancing act" is between meritocratic policies, or racist and sexist policies.

None of the speech they're concerned about makes the workplace unsafe.

If they think meritocratic policies, actually enacted rather than just spoken about, foster an unsafe workplace, who do they think is made "unsafe"?

Unqualified people are unsafe as regards their job security?

Or do they get attacked and beaten up in the parking lot for making too many mistakes?

Rumpletweezer said...

When I suggested to a high school teacher I was dating at the time that there were differences in the intelligence of different groups, she just shook her head and said "No." There are some things that can't be allowed to be true. This, apparently, is one of them.

Fernandinande said...

What if the memo said that biological differences amongst Black, Hispanic, or LGBTQ employees explained their underrepresentation in tech and leadership roles?

Gasp.

Would some people still be discussing the merit of the memo’s arguments or would there be a universal call for swift action against its author?

Yes.

BDNYC said...

"Fostering a safe workplace." There's that word again: "safe." Damore's words made people feel unsafe. Back in the day they would use the phrase "hostile work environment," but even that is too harsh a description for an employee reasonably voicing his concerns in a memo about free speech and dissent in the workplace.

Anyone who says they feel "unsafe" because of something like this should not be in the workplace. They'd be happier at home doing other things that pose less of threat to their fragile psyches. Oh man, I can't believe I just wrote that.

Michael Guarino said...

For instance, what if we replaced the word ‘women’ in the memo with another group? What if the memo said that biological differences amongst Black, Hispanic, or LGBTQ employees explained their underrepresentation in tech and leadership roles?

It is hard to stress how dumb this argument is. It is entirely possible that biological and neurological differences in men are significantly different than those between races (or sexual orientations). By simply ignoring that possibility so you can substitute it with a presumed moral high ground, they are engaging in barely concealed question-begging. Just on a purely logical level, this is completely pathetic BS.

But as it happens, it is not even great question begging, because from what I have seen, proportional representations of blacks or hispanics in tech roles is likely impossible without significantly altering Google's hiring bar. There simply are nowhere near enough talented engineers in those demographics to meet that goal, and there is no indication that will change with any policy manipulation. If I were a betting man, I frankly would not bet against a genetic explanation for that, especially considering how ludicrously irrational and scientifically illiterate the social constructionist arguments against it are.

Lyssa said...

I'm sympathetic to the comparison to race (or other issues), but I ultimately do not think that they are comparable. There is an enormous amount of research out there about the differences between male and female brains, interests and skills (though it should be noted that a lot of it is quite unsettled). There is not, to my knowledge, much or any reputable research regarding differences between races (or other demographic groups) that shows true differences.

Differences between the races and differences between sexes are simply different types of differences.

Michael Guarino said...

*sorry I meant to say biological differences between sexes are significantly different than those between races

Clayton Hennesey said...

Google is the "To Serve Man" of our time.

Unknown said...

“To suggest a group of our colleagues have traits that make them less biologically suited..."

This has been puzzling me. Damore says Google should entertain the possibility that more men are suited to be software engineers than women, but he must also tacitly assume that the women working at Google are suited to their jobs, and as such they represent a minority of women. Yet he has been accused of saying that he views the women at Google as less suited to the work they're doing than the men.

Sebastian said...

"it was noted that if Damore’s dubious contentions about women’s skills were replaced by those about race or religion, there would be no debate." Right, because on a number of dimensions the population-level differences between whites and blacks and Asians and blacks are greater than those between men and women--in IQ, SAT scores, PISA/TIMMS scores, etc. etc., so the relevant pool of skilled black engineers and scientists is tiny, and at any high level of achievement they will be vastly outnumbered by skilled Asians. To achieve race parity, Google would have to sweep up all black math talent and discriminate even more vigorously in hiring.

Clayton Hennesey said...

Anyone who says they feel "unsafe" because of something like this should not be in the workplace. They'd be happier at home doing other things that pose less of threat to their fragile psyches. Oh man, I can't believe I just wrote that.

The passive-aggression of "feeling safe" is theoretically infinite. It would really be interesting to learn which "needs to feel safe" Google recognizes and responds to, to what degree, and which ones it doesn't. But somehow I feel I already know.

PB said...

We know that evolution produces differences between populations that remain isolated from each other over time. If evolution produces differences between the sexes, why can't evolution produce differences within the same sex? Particularly if those sub-groups within a sex remain in relative isolation and face different environments? To deny that would be to deny evolution and deny science.

jimbino said...

"When the truth meets your lies in a memo surprise, that's Damore."

Rick said...

fostering a safe workplace...

The lies state immediately and penetrate the highest levels of management.

PB said...

For all of you using the Chrome browser, Google is seeing all of this. And building a profile of you based on it.

Kevin said...

PARTY OF SCIENCE! PARTY OF SCIENCE! PARTY OF SCIENCE!

You will all disregard what the scientist said in his carefully annotated work and get back to your cubicles before your stock options expire worthless.

Martin said...

But of course, it is well proven that men and women ARE different in ways that racial or other ethnic groups are not. That is not to say that a woman cannot make a fine software engineer, or whatever--but statistically there are differences between the sexes in many ways, and plausible mechanisms (evolutionary, hormonal) by which differences would be expected.

Wojicki posited a false equivalence that the group bought into. Now, these are not stupid people, although sometimes a bunch of near-clones working under pressure will fall into a groupthink that leads to a stupid outcome. But, in this case, I suspect that they got to where they got to for 2 reasons:

1. They really believe it and science be damned.

2. They have to recruit a young workforce that is just full of SJ snowflakes who really truly think that if someone has a different opinion it is tantamount to a physical assault... who really do feel unsafe and threatened by the expression of unfamiliar ideas. In that sense, with those comments coming up from below, they had to consider the effect on Google's reputation among the groups it recruits from.

I do not think those two reasons are inconsistent, and it is not a matter of one or the other. I think their recruitment needs fit well with their own prejudices, so while they say it was a tough decision, it really wasn't. They did what they wanted to do all along and expelled the heretic, as soon as they could rationalize it. Their description of their thought process is so incredibly lame, I can draw no other conclusion--they knew all along what they would do, pretended otherwise for a while, then found the fig leaf they needed.

Andrew Breitbart famously said that culture leads politics, and that is certainly the case here.

I also note that Jonathan Haidt has compared elite campuses to the churches or temples of a new religion, where any contrary expressions are heretical and cannot be tolerated. This is the best explanation of what has been going on at college campuses, and has clearly moved with its age cohort into the workplace.

Heaven help us all, because this will NOT end well.

Fernandinande said...

Paco Wové said...
"Damore’s focus on biology really made it clear that he had crossed the line."

Biology: beyond the pale!


Heh. Those people are comically desperate to blame anything they don't like on the badness of "white males" ...speaking of biology.

That's what this uproar is all about: "White males are racist and sexist. Do not think of any other hypothesis. Do not discuss."

gregq said...

“To suggest a group of our colleagues have traits that make them less biologically suited..."

So, for all Google's attempts to hire high-IQ people, management is apparently full of people who can't read? Good to know.

Since what he said was that the pool of "all women" will provide fewer qualified people for Google than the pool of "all men." This does NOT say that the women who ARE hired aren't qualified. It says that "maybe 20% female is the best we can do, while still maintaining standards."

"Damore’s focus on biology really made it clear that he had crossed the line."
Why yes, using solidly scientifically established results to back up his argument DOES "cross the line", since that makes it impossible for emotional losers to get away with just stomping their feet and ignoring what he said.

Sebastian said...

"It is hard to stress how dumb this argument is" It is, on the merits. But not from the point of view of prog execs with SJW employees who must also manage external PR in prog-invested environment. Dumb is smart if it has benefits: 1. exec virtue signaling; 2. SJW appeasement; and 3. well, SJW appeasement. This is what Damore left out of his proposed cost-benefit calculation for Google: when progs take over, data add to cost, while posturing is beneficial.

gregq said...

jimbino said...
"When the truth meets your lies in a memo surprise, that's Damore."

LOL!

BDNYC said...

It is interesting to see so many people who think of themselves as pro-science recoil at the thought that there may be a scientific basis for differences on average among groups based on race or gender. It's the Bell Curve all over again. As I understood his memo, Damore wants Google to stop artificially tinkering with the workplace on the basis of these traits of identity. If Google's engineers are a certain percentage male, that is not necessarily proof of discrimination, but indeed could be the result of truly gender-blind hiring practices. Ditto about race.

Google, as an extraordinarily large corporation, has become quite bureaucratic. That just happens. And in the tech field, where Asian and white males tend to dominate, a large corporation with a risk-averse HR department will naturally want to find ways to recruit more women and minorities to bolster the corporation's defenses against Title VII lawsuits. I am sure Google is mindful of how employees and former employees could make millions of them if they do not embrace a "diverse" workplace.

Derek Kite said...

It was either Damore or 3/4 of the management staff. The decision was simple.

I wonder how many engineers are engineering their own departures right now. There might be lots of good jobs for women and minorities as long as the money lasts.

Rae said...

Everything I've seen about this seems to bolsters Damone's case, and makes me less apt to trust Google with my data.

Caligula said...

Sundar Pichai's argument reminds me of the arguments surrounding same-sex marriage prior to Obergefell. For promoters of same-sex marriage insisted that laws forbidding same-sex marriage were not substantively different than the laws which once forbad interracial marriages, while opponents insisted that "male" and "female" were essential biological characteristics, and thus entirely different from differences in race, ethnicity or religion.

And no sooner did SCOTUS discover that the Constitution, although facially silent on the subject of marriage, actually guaranteed same-sex partners the right to marry but, the war for transgender rights erupted. And that war has not merely demanded that all deny the existence of any essential differences between tbe biological sexes but has all but replaced the category "sex" with "gender," thereby rendering mere biological sex not merely irrelevant, but as a concept simply obliterated.

And so opponents who might assert that sex is an essential biological characteristic in ways that race, ethnicity or religion are not, are left, like speakers of Orwell's Newspeak, trying to express ideas in a language which has been engineered to make it impossible to express such ideas.

PB said...

What has Google come up with lately that is of value? Little it seems. Their efforts to create a perfect workforce seem not to be paying off.

The same goes for Apple. What have they done lately? Besides build the "perfect" corporate headquarters? Of course, another iPhone that will be snapped up by the religious faithful without thought beyond what they think is says about them personally.

Yes, they're both banking coin hand over fist, but that may not last. Big arrogant corporations typically know what they want and get it in the end. Good and hard.

Krumhorn said...

It's astounding how blind the lefties are to their totalitarian tendencies. It's almost reflexive.

- Krumhorn

exhelodrvr1 said...

"There is not, to my knowledge, much or any reputable research regarding differences between races (or other demographic groups) that shows true differences. "

Haven't there been a number of studies that pointed in that direction? But anyone who would do exhaustive follow-up research would be completely ostracized. Unless the results happened to be PC-acceptable.

Isn't there a relatively small subset of Jews that has a noticeably higher IQ?

Balfegor said...

What if the memo said that biological differences amongst Black, Hispanic, or LGBTQ employees explained their underrepresentation in tech and leadership roles? Would some people still be discussing the merit of the memo’s arguments or would there be a universal call for swift action against its author?

I would think they ought to be open to discussing the merits of the memo's arguments -- the uneven distribution of salient traits among different slices of the population is a critical problem for anti-discrimination law -- but I can certainly understand why that would terrify them. There's some logical chains that are just too fraught for a public company to let people pursue, without some guarantee that the resulting answer will be consistent with the conventional pieties and prejudices of the modern age. Hence, crimestop.

Darrell said...

You can say the same about anything. If you write something negative about coffee, say, one could contend that you would be fired if you had written a negative piece about Blacks or Muslims. And then we would fire you. Theoreticals give you infinite options.

Kate said...

jimbino ftw.

David Smith said...

I'm so old that I can remember when "is it true" was thought important among scientists, including computer scientists. I'm glad that when I worked for NASA in the late '60s that was the criterion, not whether 50% of the people who had arrived at the fact thought of themselves as women.

These are Heinlein's crazy years, we just live here.

Fernandinande said...

gregq said...
Since what he said was that the pool of "all women" will provide fewer qualified people for Google than the pool of "all men."


What funny is, guessing that getting hired at google is about the same mental level as a getting into a fancy university, 90-some% of either sex just aren't good enough.

Darrell said...

I don't feel safe around Chuck's comments. Ban him.

traditionalguy said...

There is not one enemy of the people, but two. Total favor must be shown to Women and to Blacks. And if the two ever seem to compete, than WTF. Attack The Deplorables and play dumb.

Fernandinande said...

Krumhorn said...
It's astounding how blind the lefties are to their totalitarian tendencies.


"If any man says he hates totalitarianism more than I do, he better have a knife, that's all I have to say." -- ht JH.

Darrell said...

Remember when some volunteer brownshirt at Google thought that this blog should be disappeared? And deleted the whole thing.

Clayton Hennesey said...

For those who read blogs like Search Engine Roundtable or Webmaster World, the near-universal slavishness among Webmasters toward pleasing Google - that is, structuring the Web itself around what Google alone deems "a good user experience" (not exactly the same as a superior search experience, which Google, curiously, doesn't offer) is readily apparent.

This internal Google culture, summarized and revealed in the Damore episode, will inevitable become externalized to an even greater extent and degree than is already apparent in everyday Google bias in favor of progressive ideologies, including this sort of identity politics.

It's doubtful that Bing, or Yahoo will prove much different, nor little Duck Duck Go, forced to bob for whatever sourcing it can.

As a species, we have given over our information history and culture totally, without reservation, to the Internet, then allowed a few oligopolies to own it and shape it according to their preferred perspectives.

holdfast said...

And yet, in the Olympics, men do not compete against women. Is that because there are no biological differences? Or because men would win all the medals?

On the flipside, the Olympics do not segregate by race (any more).

CWJ said...

Jimbino wins the thread!

Fernandinande said...

Lyssa said...
There is not, to my knowledge, much or any reputable research regarding differences between races (or other demographic groups) that shows true differences.


There is a lot of reputable research, quite consistent for over a hundred years, that mental differences between races are far larger than those between men and women, i.e., IQ, a factor that's quite important for technical work at google.

I Have Misplaced My Pants said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
rhhardin said...

Race has the same diversity problem; the average IQ of US blacks is 86, so disparate impact tests will always screw things up. The whites will always be discriminating no matter what they try unless you overwhelm the system with dumber people.

Smartness is not women's problem. Women's problem is an average disobsession with math stuff, but the quota effect is the same.

In life IQ doesn't matter; in a quota society it does.

In life good character matters.

CWJ said...

"I hate brussels sprouts."

You're fired. There was some sentiment to keep you on, but when our diversity/inclusiveness VP said what if you had referred to a racial or LGBT group instead of a vegetable, well then all debate stopped.

Paddy O said...

Google is all about perception, and social engineering, understanding how and why people make the decisions they do. Their business is steering people toward directions through making those people think they are free in their choices.

They use tech as a tool to shape and manipulate perception. Because of the perception of the memo caused a perception about Google, Google took the position of the perception to respond to the memo in the way that would negate the perception about Google. This is human engineering, not purely technical, and that makes Google entirely consistent in its response, even as the memo itself isn't really being debated on the merits.

Which is very postmodern in some respects, as the perception created a new reality. Truth is what can help Google grow in its perceived business goals.

rhhardin said...

VP of Divisity and Inversiveness.

I Have Misplaced My Pants said...

1. They really believe it and science be damned.

2. They have to recruit a young workforce that is just full of SJ snowflakes


I think both of those things are true, to an extent. Upper management knows that Damore is right. But for several reasons they have to make at least a cursory genuflection to the ascendant religion, and they probably believe it (the religion) to a limited extent because they have no other belief system (traditional religions being super uncool) and they have a vague sense of wanting to believe in Good Things and be Good People.

It's also no different than fifty years ago when all the prominent businessmen sat in the same pew at church for decades even though they were closet atheists or agnostics. They needed to be seen displaying the proper pieties as a requirement of their station; a guy who doesn't go to church is a guy you might not trust, amirite? And who knows, maybe occasionally saying a prayer or taking communion or putting a nice check in the collection plate couldn't hurt, just in case God is real, right?

Similarly, intelligent and prominent colonists thought that the Salem witch trials were bullshit too, but they had reasons to keep their mouths shut and roll their eyes behind closed doors only.

Hagar said...

Women, race, or religion.
Apples, oranges, or tomatoes.

Balfegor said...

Re: Lyssa:

There is not, to my knowledge, much or any reputable research regarding differences between races (or other demographic groups) that shows true differences.

Sure there is. I gather that it is sort of an open question whether it is "biological" or not (or indeed what "biological" would mean in this context, since the expression of your genes is heavily influenced by your environment), but the existence of differences among the races is well known. Even when ultraliberal Vox considered the issue, they start from the premise that there are real, measureable differences between the races -- the only question is whether the cause is "biological" or something else. I don't find Vox's analysis persuasive, but I don't think there's sufficient evidence to say for certain either way. To say that there is no reputable research is not really accurate: the research is just not dispositive, at least from what I have read.

But really, it doesn't matter whether it's biological or not -- Google and other companies aren't hiring theoretical employees from 20 or 40 years in the future, but adults as they exist today.

Even if you exclude measures like IQ and just look at things like Computer Science degrees, you find that in 2015, Whites received 58% of the CS degrees, Asians 18%, Hispanics 9.1%, and Blacks 5.2%. Leaving aside "Hispanic" (which is an ethnic category that overlaps with White, Black, and Other), Whites are 72% of the US population, Asians 4.8%, and Blacks 12.6%, which means that Whites are slightly underrepresented among CS grads, Asians massively overrepresented, and Blacks significantly underrepresented. With that as your source pool, you're almost inevitably going to see Asian overrepresentation and Black underrepresentation in tech, as compared against the population as a whole, unless you put your finger pretty heavily on the scale to keep Asian employment down and Black employment up.

If you then cross over to the "high tech" (as a proxy for Silicon Valley) employment data, you can see that among professionals in high tech by race (Figure 7), Whites are 68%, Asians 19.49%, Hispanics 5.28%, and Blacks 5.27%. That's obviously not directly comparable to the CS graduation figures, since employment reflects a number of different graduating cohorts (earlier cohorts may have had a different, and probably Whiter, mix), and CS degrees aren't the only degrees useful in "high tech." But it is roughly comparable, and similarly suggests slight White underrepresentation (68% < 72%), substantial Asian overrepresentation, and substantial Black underrepresentation vis a vis the US population as a whole (again, excluding Hispanics from the analysis).

But it's broadly consistent with the pattern among degree holders -- that's more or less the pattern you'd expect given who is getting CS degrees. You're going to get lopsidedly Asian and male work forces if the pool of people with the necessary qualifications is lopsidedly Asian and male. All the diversity seminars in the world won't change that.

ThomasD said...

Simple questions:

1. How many sexes are there?

2. How many races are there?

3. Which number is subject to change?

Etienne said...

I feel sorry for companies having to employ people, for the sole reason of making sure no ones feeling get hurt.

Just do your damned job. If you don't like the company, hit the f'n road.

Hagar said...

In these discussions about women in "men's fields," why is it not mentioned that a "Summers distribution" also calls for a few really bright stars?

Does a "Summers Distribution" also hold for men in "women's fields?"

jimbino said...

"Diversity" is a consummate crock. Facing a hiring decision, the employer hell-bent on implementing diversity will be inclined to select the rare Christian from a group of Indian- or Saudi-Americans, as well as the relatively rare White Mexican-American and an uncircumcised Ethiopian-Jewish Israeli. Diversity will virtually force a city sanitation department to hire the only Harvard grad among the applicants for garbage collector.

This is a joke in a country where the Supreme Court is dominated by Jews and Roman Catholics who hold degrees from either Harvard or Yale.

Etienne said...

Q: Why did Google fire James Damore?
Q: Why do dogs lick their balls?

A: Because they can.

Isn't capitalism great!

CJinPA said...

I find the use of "safe" and "unsafe" in the context of speech to be a tad sinister.

It's trend on college campuses, a tactic to limit speech. Limiting speech is considered nonintellectual, but preserving safety? That's just responsible management.

Keep an eye out for folks who use the word "safe" in the context of speech. They are the ones who wield the power.

Balfegor said...

Re: jimbino:

This is a joke in a country where the Supreme Court is dominated by Jews and Roman Catholics who hold degrees from either Harvard or Yale.

I was going to say Gorsuch gives Protestants some representation on the Court at last, but I see he was raised as a Roman Catholic, so I suppose one could suspect him of being some kind of crypto-papist.

Meanwhile, as an atheist, I have no open representation on the Court, only suspected crypto-atheists . . .

stever said...

The utter intellectual weakness of their defense makes you wonder how this could represent a company of such size. But then I look at who their customers are. People just wanted a good search engine.

Balfegor said...

I guess the other point to be made re: Damore is that the potential biological causes he suggests aren't really translatable into possible differences between the races. Weren't they things like testosterone and other hormones in the womb? I mean, differences in average testosterone levels have apparently been observed between different races, but that doesn't cut the way you might think it would cut: Blacks were observed to have higher testosterone than Whites, but if testosterone helps explain why more men than women are drawn to highly systematizing work, like computer programming, then you're left with the question of why Blacks are so markedly under represented. So it's obviously not something where you can just take his gender concerns and neatly translate them into racial concerns.

Fabi said...

"When the truth meets your lies in a memo surprise, that's Damore."

Thread winner!

Etienne said...

Meanwhile, as an atheist, I have no open representation on the Court...

Athiest's don't need representation. Everything to them is just a roll of the dice.

mrkwong said...

The tech industry has been what it is for decades.

The engineering staff is substantially Asian, Indian, or the better-educated/experienced white community. Mostly male, but women who can stand up in a meeting and cogently argue their point are highly treasured and not because they check a box. Guys don't necessarily like to hear guy voices all the time either.

Any preschool teacher will confirm (quietly, when it's not going to cost their job) everything Damore wrote, it starts that early - that doesn't mean women CAN'T code, or CAN'T manage an engineering/technical group, but it DOES mean many don't WANT to, and those that do so approach it differently. Not better, not worse, just differently. And sometimes they have to deal with more things than the guys do. I once had a boss whose ability to plan her labor and kids' delivery (twice!) for Friday evening - back in the office on Monday - was regarded around the office as some kind of magic.

Product management sits between the engineers and the customers, and so tends to the characteristics of each of those.

The problem is this, and it's a widely known point of black humor in the industry: since you can't get to 50% women or whatever in code/QA/wherever, they end up packed into HR and corporate counsel and etc.

rhhardin said...

If you wanted to talk about stuff that PC prevents you from talking about, the conclusion would be: no quotas.

Nothing sinister about it.

Balfegor said...

Re: Etienne:

Athiest's don't need representation. Everything to them is just a roll of the dice.

I follow the example of the later kings.

Joe said...

This was a purely emotional decision. For a long time, you had to have a masters degree to get an interview at Google. The irony is that this pretty much guaranteed a non-diverse workforce AND that you'd end up with a lot of managers who are riding on their degree, not their actual competency.

Years ago, I worked a company which hired several MBAs in a very short period of time. All would get very upset if you disagreed with them. Why was obvious; they were afraid of being exposed as the charlatans they were.

It's blindingly obvious that this dynamic is going on at Google.

CWJ said...

Paddy O wrote -

"Google is all about perception, and social engineering, understanding how and why people make the decisions they do. Their business is steering people toward directions through making those people think they are free in their choices."

Kind of like some conceptions of the diety. Both start with "Go..." Coincidence?

Virgil Hilts said...

I would like see Google management respond to the question of whether it is OK to be an open and avid Trump supporter and work at Google.

Feste said...

~
Psychobiology is still in its adolescence-early-adulthood in a vortex of Google executive reasoning stuck in kindergarten, perturbed by Damore not quite understanding either.

Saint Croix said...

Weird how they keep using the word "safe" to justify their actions.

Unknown said...

This is exactly what happened to Larry Summers at Harvard 10 years ago. He made a remark that simply posited that there might be differences between the sexes that account for the choices they made. The pitchforks came out, and he was fired.

Google is giving in to the PC pitchfork crowd. It's sad - it could be a great company but this is just ... sad.

BTW who has "integrity" in their job title? Isn't that a bit presumptuous?

(Google's Vice President of Diversity, Integrity & Governance Danielle Brown)

Hari said...

What if Google's prime objective is actually to maximize profit, subject to the constraint of complying with the law and not getting sued (or minimizing the net present value of the inevitable stream of lawsuits). Maybe Google would love to simply give blind tests of computer programming and other skills, but it knows that doing so will have a disparate impact on certain protected groups. So, it does exactly what colleges do. It seeks safe harbor in its never ending quest for diversity.

I see what is happening at Google as no different from what is happening on college campuses. College administrations are terrified of losing their source of funding from the government, so they implement whatever systems they think will keep them from being accused of violating Title iX, etc. Much of college spending is on administrative compliance.

Eventually, maintaining funding becomes an ends in itself. Similarly, Google sees the endless discrimination suits that hit large firms that do not achieve a government approved balance in the workforce. And, there is the never ending threat of antitrust law. So Google does what it thinks will minimize the existential threats to its existence. What we are seeing is Google deciding that it will not be evil, unless being evil is necessary to insuring its survival.

The difference between James Damore and the authors of many of the studies he cites is that Damore doesn't have tenure. Google is not doing what it wants, per se; it is doing what it thinks the government wants as the quid pro quo for letting it thrive.

Elmer Jones said...

Recode gets quoted a lot but doesn't allow comments for fear of getting their leftist narratives blown out of the water by "trolls".

You are correct about race. But that's the way feminist activists want it. Always conflating the travails of white women with those of oppressed minorities.

Damore is just one thread that is helping to unravel corporate diversity illogic.

This handy infographic explains the controversy :

https://employmentgame.files.wordpress.com/2017/08/googgender.jpg

Scientific Socialist said...

Galileo and Pope Urban VIII couldn't be reached for comment...

Hagar said...

Please note: there is no established criteria for what does - or does not - constiute "intelligence," and thus, of course, nor for how to measure "intelligence."

Michael K said...

"Isn't there a relatively small subset of Jews that has a noticeably higher IQ?"

I was watching to see if anyone would bring up Jews in this argument.

They are the real canary in the coal mine of this stuff. I wonder if Asians will figure out how much they are taking the place of the Jewish quota kids in the 1930s?

It is also unmentionable.

I posted a comment on facebook about Soros funding BLM and was quickly labeled a Nazi. The lefty who did so has no sense of irony about Sonderkommando Soros.

HoodlumDoodlum said...

I think the problem and also benefit of Google has been that we’ve created and encouraged an environment where everyone thinks they can say what they want, because that is what has always been the way it has been,

Detrimental reliance?
Or "you fucked up; you trusted us."

He thought he could be open and say what he wanted because the people in charge said everyone could be open and say what they wanted (that was a selling point when hiring people, in fact)....but this guy was TOO open and shared the WRONG thing so he had to go.


[Aside--this "not OK" language is so fucking childish. That's how you talk to a toddler! It's disappointing to see it spread to adult communication.]

rhhardin said...

There are clues that - listening to them - words such as stabilized secure, safe

If they say these words repeatedly - If they say you're safe... - Do not get in a - Vehicle None, just run - Run

- Knight and Day (2010)

Michael said...

Unsafe. That word keeps coming up with respect to lefties in general and women in particular. WTF. Words scare women. Words.

Angel-Dyne said...

Balfegor: I would think they ought to be open to discussing the merits of the memo's arguments -- the uneven distribution of salient traits among different slices of the population is a critical problem for anti-discrimination law -- but I can certainly understand why that would terrify them. There's some logical chains that are just too fraught for a public company to let people pursue, without some guarantee that the resulting answer will be consistent with the conventional pieties and prejudices of the modern age. Hence, crimestop.

What is interesting, though, is that the "conventional pieties and prejudices of the modern age" are really only accepted dogmatically and fanatically, to the point of practicing crimestop, by a subset of "elites". (I don't for a minute buy that all the muckety-mucks in Silicon Valley are "blank slaters", whatever they feel compelled to assent to in public.)

Ordinary people, even ordinary pious Western liberals, are at least aware that there is "wrongthink" out there, and, even if there are uncomfortable with it, are at least not shocked to discover that it exists. Some of the more honest and curious among them may even be able to weigh the arguments rationally. And outside of Western liberaldom, the rest of the human race, from peasant and prole to the most august of elites, has no problem with this stuff at all.

It is truly strange that (at least some) members of a purported "cosmopolitan intellectual elite" class appear to be genuinely shocked by them. The real weirdness here is the "oh, my virgin ears!" reaction upon exposure to what intelligent, decent human beings the world over - not just grunting sociopathic basement Nazis - find reasonable and plausible.

And yet they sincerely believe that "eppur si muove" is their caste's motto.

(Though I'm pretty sure the percentage of those who are just playing along to stay ahead of gummint diversity racketeers is not insignificant. To which one can only say, "Well, you've sown the wind all these years, assholes! Enjoy the whirlwind!)

buwaya said...

"I was going to say Gorsuch gives Protestants some representation on the Court at last, but I see he was raised as a Roman Catholic, so I suppose one could suspect him of being some kind of crypto-papist."

I hope he is a crypto-papist. Episcopalians are unsound.

Feste said...

~
"a crypto-papist"

Ken Miller writing addendum, “Finding Google’s God”

harkin said...

Remember, Damore mentioned biology and IQ and that subject is VERBOTEN on the left, whether about gender or race.

I truly felt as soon as I read his manifesto that that specific passage was at least one of the things that got him fired.

Even a writer I highly respect, John McWhorter, recently wrote in the National Review that the study of race and IQ "serves no purpose".

http://www.nationalreview.com/article/449208/race-iq-debate-serves-no-purpose

I did not find his argument persuasive, especially since he implied that anyone who studied or spoke about race and IQ was "obsessed" with it.

Richard Dolan said...

“To suggest a group of our colleagues have traits that make them less biologically suited to that work is offensive and not OK.”

Damore's memo was pretty clear in arguing that biological factors make some people less inclined to pursue one form of work rather than another. Whether biological factors are at work in influencing such inclinations may be right or not (I suspect they are, but I also think it makes no difference), it's beyond question that men and women (considered as groups) are inclined to pursue different intellectual interests. Those differing inclinations show up in, e.g., the different areas of study they elect (more men in engineering, more women in languages) and the different career paths they choose to follow. Damore noted, quite rightly I think, that these considerations are irrelevant in considering any individual, but are useful in talking about different populations generally.

I don't know whether you'd find the same kinds of differentiation if you compared different racial groups in the same way, but I suspect you would -- e.g. whether racial populations can be differentiated by what they choose to study or what career they choose to pursue. Damore did not discuss that directly, but I have no doubt he would add the same caveat: those considerations are irrelevant in considering any individual, and are useful only in talking about different populations generally.

From his premises, Damore could easily conclude that Google had no basis to be concerned about his memo on grounds of possible legal liability for discrimination, and that the real motivation for its response to his memo was something else. Discrimination happens at the individual level, even if the motivation is bias against a particular group. Damore's argument was that group characteristics are irrelevant in considering any individual, but are highly relevant in considering whether Google's employee population was skewed by bias (whether intentionally or implicit). His argument was that Google could have ended up with an employee population that was heavily male, and heavily white/Asian (as it is) without Google's having discriminated in its hiring decisions based on racial or gender biases. He further argued that there were ways of achieving an employee population that was less skewed on gender (and other) measures that did not require actively discriminating against other groups to get there. Obviously, Google wasn't interested in giving any of that a hearing.

What jumped out for me in Google's defense of its defenestration of Damore was this: "we have to think harder about what impact that [free and open discussion] has, especially when it makes women or others feel unsafe in the environment we have created." Damore was describing what he sees in front of him, in terms of the differentiations between the various populations from which Google draws its employees. He wasn't engaged in figurative cross-burning. It's fair to contest whether he was observing reality accurately. But the criticism is that his talking about what he sees makes others feel "unsafe." We've certainly seen that movie before, mostly in universities. As in the academic context, the invocation of "safety" is intended to shut down discussion, which Google certainly did by firing Damore.

In the short term, that approach hasn't hurt the universities much, and it's unlikely to hurt Google. Whether it will prove otherwise in the longer term is anyone's guess.

Joe Schmoe said...

Why did Google fire James Damore?

Every Google executive went into that meeting knowing they had to fire him; to not do so would incite even more screeching lefties and bad press, and there was even going to be some sort of hipster mutiny within, or at least enough truancy to affect the bottom line. They just had to spitball about the rationale for doing it, and they chose the one they knew would satiate the left: what if he had pinpointed RACE? or SEXUAL PREFERENCE?

Honestly, we all knew how this was going to turn out as soon as the guy's memo went public. Both sides, management and managees, did what they thought is just enough to virtue-signal outrage while not upsetting the apple cart, thus keeping their gravy train rolling. Neither side is really willing to risk the filthy lucre and cushy perks that go with being a Googler. This is SJW posturing at its finest. They'll even pat themselves on the back, thinking they've advanced some sort of higher cause, when all they've done is the absolute minimum to redirect public attention away from them.

buwaya said...

"I wonder if Asians will figure out how much they are taking the place of the Jewish quota kids in the 1930s?"

The big difference is there are near-infinitely more Asians than there ever were Jews. They have an endless stream of foreign reinforcements to call on. And, if it comes down to racism, ultimately, they have powerful, nuclear-armed native states to back them - well most of them.

Angel-Dyne said...

Hagar: Please note: there is no established criteria for what does - or does not - constiute "intelligence," and thus, of course, nor for how to measure "intelligence."

I dunno, seems to me places that like Google have quite well established criteria for what intelligence is, and how to measure it. (And whether what they measure is "real" intelligence is pretty much an irrelevant debate to them, as it is to any other organization looking to recruit smart people.)


HoodlumDoodlum: [Aside--this "not OK" language is so fucking childish. That's how you talk to a toddler! It's disappointing to see it spread to adult communication.]

God yes. Somebody slap these people.

harkin said...

Saw this a few days ago on the double standard:

Trans-Male: "I do what I do because of my male brain."
Liberals: [Applause and support]

Google Engineer: "I do what I do because of my male brain."
Liberals: "Fire him immediately! Workplace violence!"

Angel-Dyne said...

"places that like Google"

lol. speaking of intelligence...

Feste said...

Throw a rock in any direction finds the ‘reason’ why Google fired Damore plus a dozen narrative justifications.

David said...

Biology, eh. Of course men and women have different biology, being male and female and such. It's almost as if nature had selected them for different roles as humans evolved.

Apart from the same male and female differences, the various races do not vary biologically, except in some immaterial ways including skin color. Or so everyone says. Don't want to go there, do we?

I'm assuming the people who run Google are not stupid but they are moral cowards. Moral cowards in positions of great power do not do well for society. See United States Congress.

With a little bad luck, these smart but dumb fucks could destroy their brand and invite regulation. The regulation would make the problem worse, but the regulators don't know that.

buwaya said...

Joe Schmoe,

You are right. Also Balfegor. This is not a subject that corporate management wants to deal with, they will always choose what they perceive as the safest path, that which will make the problem go away as fast as possible. If they have to choose whom to make enemies of, in a binary situation, they will choose the apparently less-powerful.

The way out of this for the other side is to acquire or make apparent their power.
Note, as often mentioned, Googles' attitude here is much like that of universities.
That was the point of Milo Yiannopoulos campaign.

Michael K said...

"The big difference is there are near-infinitely more Asians than there ever were Jews."

Good point but a lot of Asians are setting up anchors here to be ready if China implodes.

Almost 20% of the applicants to the Army in Los Angeles are Chinese nationals. Their parents are still in China. We also see a fair number of Koreans but no Japanese.

The Chinese kids are joining a program that grants citizenship after a period that I'm not sure is the full enlistment.

Why do they want to be citizens ? Why are most of northeast Los Angeles County residents now Chinese?

My Chinese medical student of ten years ago was very frank about her reason for coming here to school. Her mother was a professor at Beijing but she wanted to bring her parents over here when they got older.

Why ?

buwaya said...

"It's almost as if nature had selected them for different roles as humans evolved."

All sexually dimorphic species, which is everything above the extremely primitive life forms.

Feste said...

~
"It's almost as if nature had selected them for different roles as humans evolved."

No. Reproduction is the sole role. The rest is mechanism.

harkin said...

"James Damore is what most people think of when they imagine a Google employee. A brilliant original thinker with interests spread across the scientific and technological spectrum. But Danielle Brown is what Google actually is: a Hillary Clinton supporter who handled diversity at Intel and Google.

When Google fired Damore, it sent a very clear message. The message wasn’t tolerance, but intolerance.

It said that its Vice President of Diversity knows more about biology than a researcher who received his biology degree in the top 3% of his class. It announced that there is no room for original thinking, heterodoxy or genius at Google."

Great read:

http://www.frontpagemag.com/fpm/267519/google-gulag-daniel-greenfield

Michael said...

It may or may not be true that certain women at Google did not come to work the day after this "event." They felt unsafe. Afraid. Now even if it is untrue it is highly believable and that is a shame. For all women.

Luke Lea said...

But of course sex isn't race and the biological differences between the sexes are both obvious and profound. Indeed, if these differences did not exist then Google would be in a pickle, since unjustifiable gender discrimination would be the only other explanation for such a lopsided underrepresentation of females in the company. Think of the legal and business implications. They would be hoist by their own petard.

Hagar said...

I dunno, seems to me places that like Google have quite well established criteria for what intelligence is, and how to measure it. (And whether what they measure is "real" intelligence is pretty much an irrelevant debate to them, as it is to any other organization looking to recruit smart people.)

Quite so, but note that it is "smartness" that they believe suits them and their needs, and should not be expanded into general statements about any population group's "IQ."

bgates said...

"What if the memo said that biological differences amongst Black, Hispanic, or LGBTQ employees explained their underrepresentation in tech and leadership roles?"

What if the Google executives had discussed murdering Damore during the phone call? Makes you think, doesn't it?

Feste said...

~
Danielle Brown new memo, hire only females, fire all males save one, follow Borges, “all men, in the climactic instant of coitus, are the same man,” our corporation needs no more than one.

Lance said...

when it was noted that if Damore’s dubious contentions about women’s skills were replaced by those about race or religion, there would be no debate.

He never said anything about women's skills. He focused entirely on the biological difference in interests.

Why is this so hard to understand? I don't believe Google's execs misunderstood him.

I think this is the key bit:
But, at some point, if we really want to change, we have to think harder about what impact that has

If the exec who said that really understands Damore, then they're saying that Google wants to change women's interests.

Dickin'Bimbos@Home said...

Race and gender may only be discussed in the narrow progressive vernacular - which is to say women and non-whites are all victims of the dickopoly, and to venture in any other direction is a thought-crime.

Hagar said...

I should not look down my nose at anyone who can do something better than I can, whether that be structural engineering or raking asphalt.

My problem is just how to make that person with that talent help me accomplish my objectives.

buwaya said...

"If the exec who said that really understands Damore, then they're saying that Google wants to change women's interests."

And this is what modern society has done, to a high degree, and wants to do more of. The result is an inability to reproduce.

I hope Google is working on artificial wombs.

Or maybe not. For all this hiring of smart people, Google has been terrible at completing and marketing products beyond its old core.

Dickin'Bimbos@Home said...

Google is so 1984

CWJ said...

"Safe" now joins "fair" in my lexicon of words that cannot be divorced from political calculation. Could it be that fairness was losing its cudgel value, so safety has been pressed into service to up the ante?

Glen Filthie said...

Google fired the man because it is a multicultural liberal stupidity chamber.

It now is more concerned about rhetoric and making marginal people feel good about themselves than it does about making a profit.

Adios Google.

dreams said...

What about the NBA, what can we do to get more women and white men into the league? Is race or gender the problem, or is it both?

Feste said...

~
It’s safe to say arthropods rule the planet and Google needs to hire more of them.

Achilles said...

Blogger PB said...
"What has Google come up with lately that is of value? Little it seems. Their efforts to create a perfect workforce seem not to be paying off."

Google analytics is pretty much driving all marketing.

Even the stuff you get in the mail.

If you need to get a 6 figure job go learn how to use the tools being developed there.

Google should be broken up.

dreams said...

And what about all those hard and dangerous blue collar jobs where women are underrepresented? Where is the outrage?

Achilles said...

Blogger Etienne said...
"I feel sorry for companies having to employ people, for the sole reason of making sure no ones feeling get hurt.

Just do your damned job. If you don't like the company, hit the f'n road."

I agree 100%.

But if I was a stockholder in google I would fire the CEO and any other corporate officer that makes google look fascist and corrupt.

Ray said...

The executives have a very narrow world view, and they used that to make their decision. They did not look beyond the question was what he wrote good for internal Google from their morality view point. And due to their echo chamber, they did not see what a firestorm this would create.

It's to bad for Google that the top lawyer for Alphabet, who favors free speech, was not in the meeting. It would have probably been much better for Google if he had been.

So far Mr. Damore is playing this very smart. He is going around the mainstream press that would love to do a Couric / Dan Rather / 60 minutes, and going to alternate media, where he is getting a fairer hearing. I would guess he is using YouTube as a vehicle, through interviews, to get his version out. And what is not understood yet by main stream media, is that YouTube is huge. And when speaking of Google, he used the we word.

Right now the mainstream media and associated web properties are treating Mr. Damore and his screed, as a misogynist.

I wonder if Mr. Damore has read, SJW Always Lie?
Purchasable for only $5.99 for the Kinlde Edition through the AA portal with 509 reviews with an average rating of 4 1/2 stars.

Ps. It would be interesting to read a review, thoughts, or fisking by AA of the book.

Achilles said...

Blogger Feste said...
~
"It’s safe to say arthropods rule the planet and Google needs to hire more of them."

We need more diversity. Arthropoda are a small percentage of life on the planet and are greatly over represented at google.

Feste said...

~
Odds on the truth of the Google hypothesis are at 1 per googol.

cremes said...

I'm reminded of an old movie called "Soul Man" starring C. Thomas Howell. In it, he does some fake tanning and is mistaken for a black man. Much hilarity ensues as he (for some reason) has to play along.

I can foresee a future where some "Soul Men" might use a little chemical assistance to change their look and join up with Google.

dreams said...

And this.

"WRITING CONFERENCE CANCELED FOR EXCESSIVE WHITENESS"

http://www.powerlineblog.com/archives/2017/08/writing-conference-canceled-for-excessive-whiteness.php

MayBee said...

I bet you could write a similar article about men and crime.

MayBee said...

If there aren't any differences between the male and female brain, how can you know you were born with a male brain in a female body?

exhelodrvr1 said...

Ultimately, the upper limit of someone's potential intelligence level is determined by the physical makeup of their brain. So it would seem pretty obvious that there is a possibility that those physical characteristics could be passed down within ethnic groups, just like any other physical characteristics.

At some point, probably not too far in the future, it will be possible to measure that potential intelligence level fairly accurately. (Maybe it already is.)

Feste said...

~
Problem is sexual selection isn’t clearly responsible for our large brains. Mom’s genes rule big brain.

rhhardin said...

Right now the mainstream media and associated web properties are treating Mr. Damore and his screed, as a misogynist.

Misogynist always means curious. Just do that substitution mentally.

Ken B said...

If you replace sex with race you turn true statements into false ones. That's pretty dreadful reasoning. If I replace all the references to Damore's essay in pichari's statement with references to Gone With The Wind it won't make sense either.

Real American said...

Do the big wigs at Google have a fucking clue what the words "safe" or "unsafe" mean? Maybe they should google it. If someone makes a threat, you might feel unsafe. Damore did not do that. There weren't even any insults. He wrote a well-reasoned policy argument in support of the company's supposed goal of increasing "diversity" - and he even cited sources, which turn out to be fairly accurate. So, there's no violence. No threats. No violent imagery. They're just harmless words. No one is any less safe than they were prior to the memo being written. Unfortunately, equating words with violence is far too common among leftists and SJW types. It's mostly because they're just fucking liars, but some of them are also pretty fucking stupid, too. Of course, I embrace the healing power of "and". Also, it allows the left to justify its own violence in response. If words are violence, then one can use violence in self defense, right?

Even if one accepted the deliberate lies told by the leftist media about the memo, i.e., that it supposedly stated that women can't do science or technology or are ill suited towards it (which any sane reading of the memo shows that it did not) there were still no threats or violence or insults. Disagree all you want with his conclusions, but they were still just words. Equating the memo with violence ignores the mean of that word - acting like it made word less "safe" is another total fucking lie. Remember, "SJWs always lie!" They lie because they have to. The truth doesn't usually support their bullshit.

So, this contention that Damore's memo somehow made googlers "feel unsafe" is just another one of their lies, but they need this lie because it justifies the firing. It's complete bullshit, though. Certain googlers may pretend they felt unsafe, but they're liars and not the type of people a company like google should want. It's all for show - some just wanted an excuse not to go to work.

Even if you were inclined to believe that some googlers really, truly, honestly believed they were less "safe", you still shouldn't. Smart people shouldn't go along with baseless delusions - if someone truly, honestly felt threatened by what Damore wrote she needs her head examined as it is obvious she suffers from some serious mental delusions. But none of that is Damore's fault and certainly isn't a basis to claim he made the company less "safe."

Ken B said...

His "focus on biology", i.e. Cited science, is precisely where he is not appealing to stereotypes.

chuck said...

> Guys don't necessarily like to hear guy voices all the time either.

Not to mention that the workplace smells like a men's locker room ;) A whiff of femininity now and then is refreshing.

rhhardin said...

IQ means what you score on an IQ test. They're geneticists so interested in genes, not culture. So they have to use statistical methods to take culture out of the measurement.

One way is ask cultural questions too. If you get them wrong your IQ goes up, if you get them right your IQ goes down.

I mention it only to show that adjusting for culture is not hard.

A geneticist is driven to drive culture out, not to show blacks inferior. Math is at his disposal.

A second measure of intelligence is necessary too, say attainment or whatnot, to show how much adjustment is necessary.

Angel-Dyne said...

Hagar: Quite so, but note that it is "smartness" that they believe suits them and their needs, and should not be expanded into general statements about any population group's "IQ."

"[S]hould not be expanded into general statements about any population group's 'IQ.'"

Sez who?

"IQ" is predictive of all kinds of traits that matter, including the kind of "smarts" that Google wants to employ, these are measurable, and there are differences in their distribution among different population groups. And yes, one can make "general statements" about these distributions.

Now, if you mean Google (or other organizations) should just employ their criteria and shut up about it because they'd be stupid to make "general statements" and get in the soup with the law and every SJW banshee in the land, well, yeah, but....

...having taken that advice, they are finding themselves right where they would be if they'd gotten a megaphone and blasted "general statements about any population group's 'IQ.'" from headquarter's rooftop. Because, see, that limited "smartness" (even if it has absolutely nothing whatever to do with mysterious, unquantifiable, but indisputably uniformly distributed "real" intelligence), still results in glaringly obvious "disparate impact" (unequal sex and racial representation) in their workforce. And you can't talk about "disparate impact" without talking about "population groups", and the differing trait distributions among them.

If it were as easy to just avoid "general statements" and get on with our business as you seem to think it is, we wouldn't be enjoying the clown show we're being treated to right now - everybody desperately trying to claw their way out of the equality and diversity tar pit, virtue-signaling like mad, shooting the wounded...

Stephen A. Meigs said...

Google is presumably infested with people who believe in sodomy so strongly that they don't want to tolerate any intelligent discussion about it, because intelligent discussion discourages sodomy. No thoughtful person who gives a damn about civil rights for blacks or about women being free from male tyranny would want freedom-to-sodomize to be grouped together with civil rights for minorities and women. If sodomy isn't about enslaving and taking away freedom, What exactly is it about?

First, partly because they were too racist and misogynist to care, they enslaved blacks so they could point at the "appropriateness" of slavery as proof that enslaving women with sodomy is nothing immoral. Then, partly because they were too racist and misogynist to care, they made out like black people are what contaminates women rather than sodomy so let's segregate them from white folks. Now, partly because they are too racist and misogynist to care (about corrupting the sacred cause of civil rights for other races or protecting women from the tyranny of sodomy), they pretend that hating black people is like hating sodomy, so if you hate sodomy you're a bigot.

People at Google don't care about women's rights or racial rights. They only care about the wrong to sodomize. They hate any discussion about sodomy, women, or black people that isn't their official PC love of sodomy =love of women = love of black people nonsense, because freedom of discussion brings truth and truth is against sodomy. And it is not just Google. Take the anti-Russia hysteria. Hardly anybody on the left was particularly against Putin before he decided to take steps to prevent the Sochi Olympics being turned into semi-pornography to support sodomy. Now? He's almost like Satan to the pro-sodomy pc fanatics on the left, a large part of the left now unfortunately, even when we especially need allies because we face what is an obviously extremely evil and dangerous threat (Kim Jung Un).

rhhardin said...

The traditional complaint about voices is hen meetings. There's a longing for a male voice.

The trouble with women's voices is that you can't tune them out the way you can a guy who doesn't know what he's talking about. You keep hearing the lady.

Paddy O said...

"If there aren't any differences between the male and female brain, how can you know you were born with a male brain in a female body?"

This is a key question. Because it shows a lot of the incoherence in the discussions. Clearly there's a widespread assertion about the differences between male and female, that is the basis for the whole transgender discussion. Otherwise people would just feel human. So the issues are about controlling and defining and allowing what those differences actually are. Some differences are embraced and some are excluded from any discussion.

Which generally devolves the discussion of gender into stereotypical behaviors of what a man does or a woman dresses like. Meanwhile, on the other side of the room, such stereotypes are rejected entirely as limiting to those within a particular gender.

It's the old "sexual behavior is meaningless and at the same time sex is everything it means to be a person" problem in contemporary discussions.

Feste said...

~
“They're geneticists so interested in genes, not culture. So they have to use statistical methods to take culture out of the measurement.”

Some evidence that social selection helps generate large brains. I’m thinking this is true across taxa (need to double check this). More social means larger brain. For primates – holding controls for phylogeny – larger brains have correlations with larger social groups. Reciprocity almost demands this - maybe now. Bats, dolphins are social animals with large brains.

rhhardin said...

Some women experts try a fry voice, thinking it makes their voice more male-like.

This sounds stupid as well as irritating.

Just do the best you can, honey, and be brief.

walter said...

Perhaps if we used solely % representation of males in women dominated fields as some sort of social justice metric, we might find that sort of logic lacking.
But that's not a "safe" excercise at the moment.
Hell..the English language isn't "safe" from its ongoing rape.

Feste said...

...out ...

MayBee said...

It's the old "sexual behavior is meaningless and at the same time sex is everything it means to be a person" problem in contemporary discussions.

So astute.

rhhardin said...

A long, long time ago when Black history month started, I quipped that we need a women's history month. It was a joke. Women have the same history as men.

Yesterday's zinger is today's requirement.

Inkling said...

Quote: “But I think Damore’s focus on biology really made it clear that he had crossed the line.”

Yes, that's where Damore went wrong. With a masters in biology from Harvard, he focused on biology. Nothing upsets such people like appears to science, to research and to facts.

Oh my gosh. I just realize that this blog is using Google as my identity. Quick, lock the doors, draw the curtains. I'm not home.

rhhardin said...

Does an inclination to nag make women better managers.

rhhardin said...

Can needlework be used for zingers.

rhhardin said...

As ye sew so shall ye reap.

MayBee said...

I guess we just have to assume women aren't clever enough to decide what we want to study in college.

Here are the top majors for women:
https://www.goodcall.com/news/recent-georgetown-study-shows-which-college-majors-are-dominated-by-men-and-women-02108

Major % women % men
Early Childhood Education 97 3
Medical Assisting Services 96 4
School Student Counseling 94 6
Communication Disorders Sciences and Services 94 6
Library Science 93 7
Family and Consumer Sciences 93 7
Nursing 92 8
Elementary Education 91 9
Nutrition Sciences 89 11
Special Needs Education 88 12


This is from the same article:
Dr. Callie Babbitt, an Assistant Professor at the Golisano Institute for Sustainability at the 
Rochester Institute of Technology, says one key reason female students do not pursue engineering and industrial careers is because they often don’t have a clear understanding of what engineers do or how jobs in these fields directly contribute to solving societal problems. “From an early age, students see the tangible contributions of healthcare and education professions, but may not be aware that engineers are directly involved in creating the clean water we drink, the innovative products we use, and the technology surrounding our every-day lives,” says Babbitt.

But I don't see how this accounts for a difference, because how would male students have a better idea of what engineers do than female students do?
That would be a more socioeconomic difference than a male/female difference.

rhhardin said...

What does Google Australia do about aborigines? The HR challenge.

Inkling said...

Long Quote: In fact, [another longtime Google leader, YouTube CEO Susan Wojcicki, wrote in Fortune]: “For instance, what if we replaced the word ‘women’ in the memo with another group? What if the memo said that biological differences amongst Black, Hispanic, or LGBTQ employees explained their underrepresentation in tech and leadership roles? Would some people still be discussing the merit of the memo’s arguments or would there be a universal call for swift action against its author?"

Two factors:

1. Arguments based on facts always have to be considered. There are a host of undeniable, measurable difference between groups, including athletic prowess. It makes no sense to pick one trait—the ability to code or to like to code software—and deny that it might also be among those differences.

2. Studies of differences between men and women can and have been run across almost every society on the planet. That allows cultural, historical, and religious factors to be evaluated and perhaps excluded. That's much more difficult to do with these other distinctions, particularly Hispanics since they come, by definition, from Hispanic cultures.


Francisco D said...

"There are some things that can't be allowed to be true. This, apparently, is one of them."

Sadly true.

This is the result when teachers at all levels teach students WHAT to think rather than HOW to think.

The rot is pervasive and will only get worse until the tree of knowledge collapses.

I used to think Ayn Rand was a drama queen, although I appreciated her writing. It seems that the Left has used her work as a "how to" manual.

Clyde said...

Know your rights! All three of them!

...

Number Three!
You have the right to free speech...
As long as
You're not dumb enough to actually try it!
Know your rights!
These are your rights!

...

--The Clash, "Know Your Rights," Combat Rock, 1982

Angel-Dyne said...

rhhardin: The trouble with women's voices is that you can't tune them out the way you can a guy who doesn't know what he's talking about. You keep hearing the lady.

It's funny 'cause it's true.

Why are higher pitched voices harder to tune out than lower-pitched ones? I suppose that's true of sounds in general - higher frequencies are just more irritating. If I am, say, sitting in a cafe reading, I can easily tune out any nearby male blowhard. A loud-voiced woman dominating a conversation at a nearby table, on the other hand - the need to move tables arises.

I note this is more of a problem in the U.S. than some other places - American women (and God help us, so many younger American men) have remarkably infantilized, high-pitched voices these days. The irritation is exacerbated by their tendency to speak very loudly.

rhhardin said...

If you aim a ball bearing at another ball bearing across the room, and drop the latter just as the former is fired, they hit each other. That's enough to get a guy into technical work.

Sebastian said...

"Women have the same history as men," except that theirs is samer.

Women have the same history, but Women's History is not the same.

n.n said...

modern society ... The result is an inability to reproduce

Elective wars, CAIR, etc. are designed to replace dodos with ducks. And, ironically, to reduce democratic diversity. The VPs of [class] diversity have their work cut out for them.

I hope Google is working on artificial wombs.

What are things Planned and cannibalized?

tim in vermont said...

What turned the tide, said sources, was when it was noted that if Damore’s dubious contentions about women’s skills were replaced by those about race or religion, there would be no debate.

This seems like a complete non-sequitur to us but if you take as a matter of complete faith that there are no differences among the many genders created by God out of clay, it makes sense to compare gender differences to racial differences. Because, as Slate says "Evolutionary psychology is just the most obvious example of science’s flaws." You can imagine William Jennings Bryant thumping his bible and saying that, can't you?

You know why? Because it makes absolutely no sense that the different sexes would develop different evolutionary strategies within the same species in the millions of years of human evolution. Why not? Because we are not like all of the other fucking animals on this fucking planet that pretty much all do! Drones/queen bees, praying mantises, sea horses, polar bears, wolves, gorillas, etc, etc because GOD MADE us special! We aren't animals! We are humans!

Clyde said...

Lyssa said...
I'm sympathetic to the comparison to race (or other issues), but I ultimately do not think that they are comparable. There is an enormous amount of research out there about the differences between male and female brains, interests and skills (though it should be noted that a lot of it is quite unsettled). There is not, to my knowledge, much or any reputable research regarding differences between races (or other demographic groups) that shows true differences.

Differences between the races and differences between sexes are simply different types of differences.


Why is it that the NBA has such a high proportion of African-American players? Why do Kenyans or other east African runners usually win the Boston Marathon (and other marathons)? Why do the little Indian (dot, not feather) kids usually end up in the national spelling bee finals? If there are no differences between races, you'd expect all of those activities to follow the same demographic spread as the general population. And you'd be wrong.

rhhardin said...

Anne Carson thinks the irritating thing about women's voices relates to the screams of childbirth.

Discuss.

hey it's online (pdf)

You don't even have to buy the book.

The Godfather said...

Have you heard about the NBA team that Google is sponsoring? The first 10 players will be:

3 White Males

4 White Females

1 Hispanic Male

1 Black Male

1 Black Female

Applications are open -- Jim Damore is advised not to apply.

Ralph L said...

"Unsafe" words are a lot more powerful coming from management than a worker bee, especially when backed by real action. Did they even think about the impact on the non-SJWs in their workforce who are the now-Silent Majority?

Then there's the bad publicity with their customers, advertisers, and owners.

They'd have done better to ignore the memo and let their employees jaw it out.

Ralph L said...

Some women think words can be unsafe because they've weaponized their own.

dreams said...

When we abandoned the tried and true melting pot, we created a lot of problems, so divisive.

Gahrie said...

We aren't animals! We are humans!

Well......humans are animals, by definition. However we are also more than animals.

Gahrie said...

When we abandoned the tried and true melting pot, we created a lot of problems, so divisive.

Yet another Progressive mistake. One reason to keep Progressives out of power today is the fact that we are still dealing with all the mistakes the Progressives made their first time around.

n.n said...

because GOD MADE us special

Maybe. Evolution is chaos. Evolutionists frequently and opportunistically misrepresent the science (i.e. a philosophy with accuracy inversely proportional to the product of time and space offsets) and reach conclusions based on facts not in evidence. What is the Nyquist Rate for temporal and spatial spectrums? The extrauniversal (i.e. outside of the human causal and perception bubble) factor -- "stork" in Pro-Choice belief systems -- may indeed be "God".

That said, is our consciousness a phenomenon of origin or expression?

Fernandinande said...

BDNYC said...
"Fostering a safe workplace." There's that word again: "safe." Damore's words made people feel unsafe.


I noticed that Althouse, although actually expressing fear, attributed forceful, "rapey" sounding words or actions to Damore: "push us", "shoot out", "suddenly force", "face up to", "in his terms" "right now", etc.

dreams said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Gahrie said...

I'm reminded of an old movie called "Soul Man" starring C. Thomas Howell. In it, he does some fake tanning and is mistaken for a black man. Much hilarity ensues as he (for some reason) has to play along.

He applied for, and won, a scholarship or Blacks only. He wasn't tanned, he was wearing blackface and pretending to be Black. He gets a Black girl friend, but eventually gets caught.

tcrosse said...

Megan McArdle, as a card-carrying woman, has an interesting take:
As a woman in tech I realized these are not my people

n.n said...

However we are also more than animals.

Maybe. The observable, reproducible difference, that can be observed, reproduced within our causal and perceptual bubble (i.e. frame of reference), is that humans exhibit greater degrees of freedom.

Fernandinande said...

Gahrie said...
Well......humans are animals, by definition. However we are also more than animals.


No, we're just animals.

Animals with slightly bigger brains than other animals, but brains that are still so feeble and primitive that it took literally thousand of years for a very small part of the general population of humans to discover and somewhat understand basic elements of nature like electricity, germs, and DNA.

Grandma Cate said...

What is going on at Google? Is some group trying to destroy Google? Who or whatever has committed Google to the primary goal of “diversity” is responsible for the mess at Google right now, where half of the Googlers support Damore’s manifesto and the rest are confused as to which employees were hired for their race or sex and which for their talent. Then most of the news media totally distorted the calm sensible “manifestor” that Damore wrote and inflamed millions. Is US government money somehow motivating Google's focus on "diversity"?

If the major goal for Google is to achieve “diversity” and they select employees to achieve that goal, it is probably time to sell Goggle stock, since “diversity” doesn’t necessarily lead to excellence. If the ultimate goal of “diversity” requires employees to be 50% male and 50% female, then there is a big problem, because 80% of computer science graduates are male and only 20% of them are female. This means Goggle can choose the best males graduates, since there are so many of them. However Goggle will probably have to select all the A, B, C female graduates, since there are so few of them. Three top male employees might resent working with a C female employee who can’t do her share of the work and who then complains when she isn’t paid as much as the male employees.

Why doesn’t Google just hire people on the basis of their qualifications and ignore their sex or race?


Fernandinande said...

we're just animals.

I'm proud of my humility.

David Begley said...

The author of the Recode piece is Kara Swisher. She is a hard core Lefty and a nasty piece of work. I don't trust her "reporting" on a macro basis.

Gahrie said...

Wow..I just looked Soul Man up. The girlfriend was Rae Dawn Chong (Tommy Chong's daughter). Some of the co stars were James Earl Jones, Leslie Nielsen, Julia Louis-Dreyfus and Ron Reagan.

n.n said...

"As a Woman in Tech, I Realized: These Are Not My People"
Girls can code. Maybe fewer will choose to do so.

Choice, not Choice, is so controversial. It's no wonder that leaders and acolytes of the Pro-Choice Church are on one of their infamous baby hunts in order to force the [social] consensus. But, there is a conservation of principles, and progressive liberals will have to qualify their monotonic divergence in order to remain credible.

tola'at sfarim said...

What if he used the word mansplain? since the reason that google isnt diverse enough can only be bec. of racism/sexism etc, shouldnt the hr dept and upper management be fired wholesale?

Fernandinande said...

buwaya says ...
This is not a subject that corporate management wants to deal with, they will always choose what they perceive as the safest path,


The real problem, in the US at least, is a corrupted federal government which is almost insane in its delusions about human beings. Except for the "almost" part.

Sebastian said...

"Is some group trying to destroy Google?" Don't Google execs have a, you know, fiduciary responsibility to their shareholders? If so, does diversity nonsense present a legal liability?

Sebastian said...

Why hasn't anyone sued the local sanitation department for gender discrimination and lack of diversity?

Gahrie said...

No, we're just animals.

Animals with slightly bigger brains than other animals


I don't believe this. There is something different and so far indefinable about humans something that separates us from the other animals. Some call it a soul, some meta-cognition, there are a million other names.

There are other intelligent animals. There are other tool using, and even tool inventing animals. Some animals can be taught to speak, some using sign language. Some animals are self aware.

No other animal will ever write a symphony, will ever create a mathematical theorem, will ever discover a cure for a disease, will ever write a history.

tim in vermont said...

Well......humans are animals, by definition. However we are also more than animals.

Vulcans are actually a fictional race, BTW.

Fernandinande said...

Gahrie said...
No other animal will ever write a symphony, will ever create a mathematical theorem, will ever discover a cure for a disease, will ever write a history.


It took thousands of years - tens of thousands of years - for humans to do any of those things. That's pretty stupid, and wait another 7 million years and the took using S. American monkey could be doing the same.

tim in vermont said...

No other animal will ever write a symphony, will ever create a mathematical theorem, will ever discover a cure for a disease, will ever write a history.

Display behaviors to get chicks, like a rooster's crow, a snipe's mating flight, a turkey's beard... Women have a need to attract competent and strong men, not to be like them. Of course there are exceptions, it's a spectrum, a bell curve, but saying that didn't help the poor schmuck formerly of Google.

Fernandinande said...

took using S. American monkey

= "tool-using S. American monkeys".

The Woman just came back with her sister so now I gotta act normal.

Big Mike said...

Probably the best solution is to identify women with programming aptitude and force them to major in computer science. Maybe a woman wants to be a marine biologist or has always had her heart set on being a law professor, but never mind! Google and Facebook and other Silly-con Valley firms need more women! If any of the selected women balk then there's the hanging scene from "Handmaiden's Tale."

Angel-Dyne said...

Sebastian: Don't Google execs have a, you know, fiduciary responsibility to their shareholders? If so, does diversity nonsense present a legal liability?

See:

Rock and a hard place.

Scylla and Charybdis.

The devil and the deep blue see.

Damned if you do and damned if you don't.

Getting sued by shareholders for failing in fiduciary responsibility, or getting sued by the gummint for "disparate impact" and "discrimination"?

Decisions, decisions.

In Clown World, I guess it's a matter of choosing by whom you prefer to be legally reamed.

bagoh20 said...

I think the real problem was that his assertions could not really be debunked, so Google was left to agree, tolerate, or punish the truth. They chose the most evil response. Bless their hearts. If they could have effectively debunked him with facts, that would have satisfied them, but we all know how angry it makes you when someone proves you wrong in front of everyone, and you know it. You just want to punch them right in the face. This is as close as they could get to that legally.

donald said...

His mind wasn't right.

NorthOfTheOneOhOne said...

Angel-Dyne said...

Why are higher pitched voices harder to tune out than lower-pitched ones?

Because offspring. The species wouldn't have lasted long if you could tune out hungry babies and hurt children.

bagoh20 said...

Megan McArdle's take is spot on, and so obviously true that it makes me wonder just how many people are able to accept facts they wish were not so. I think very very few of us. We would rather hurt people (the messenger and the poorly served victims) than even say "maybe you have a point."

CL said...

Damore was postulating that part of the issue is that women are not as INTERESTED in the combination of computing and 80 hour work weeks. Not that they are not CAPABLE. High school reading comprehension is required here, but is lacking.

donald said...

"The right's denial of evolution". That's a pretty broad and moronic statement right there.

Balfegor said...

Re: MayBee (quoting article):

“From an early age, students see the tangible contributions of healthcare and education professions, but may not be aware that engineers are directly involved in creating the clean water we drink, the innovative products we use, and the technology surrounding our every-day lives,” says Babbitt.

What?? How can a child growing up in a modern country not realise that literally everything around them was designed by engineers? That sounds like a massive failure of basic education.

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