2005 November 17 Thursday
America Becoming Dumb And Dumber

Steve Sailer points to a depressing report about the dismal demographic future of America.

But now, for the first time ever, America's educational gains are poised to stall because of growing demographic trends. If these trends continue, the share of the U.S. workforce with high school and college degrees may not only fail to keep rising over the next 15 years but could actually decline slightly, warns a report released on Nov. 9 by the National Center for Public Policy & Higher Education, a nonprofit group based in San Jose, Calif. The key reason: As highly educated baby boomers retire, they'll be replaced by mounting numbers of young Hispanics and African Americans, who are far less likely to earn degrees.

Because workers with fewer years of education earn so much less, U.S. living standards could take a dive unless something is done, the report argues. It calculates that lower educational levels could slice inflation-adjusted per capita incomes in the U.S. by 2% by 2020. They surged over 40% from 1980 to 2000.

This National Center for Public Policy & Higher Education pedals the standard liberal tripe that the solution is improved education. Never mind the low correlation between spending per student and educational outcomes. Never mind the huge body of evidence for large differences in average IQs between the races. Faced with a genetically caused difference in average ability and an enormous demographic crisis for the United States the stupid knee jerk liberal response is to make arguments based on the bright shining lie that underlies all American mainstream domestic policy debates. The emperor has no clothes but the yahoos insist on debated flaws in the design of the emperor's gown.

Faced with a huge problem America's pathetic elites vacillate between two responses: A) Lie about it or B) Ignore it. Do we deserve this? Are Americans collectively all so fllawed that most of us deserve the misrule of liars?

More U.S. white-collar jobs will then be likely to move offshore, warns National Center President Patrick M. Callan. "For the U.S. economy, the implication of these trends is really stark," he says.

Callan's projections are based on the growing diversity of the U.S. population. As recently as 1980, the U.S. workforce was 82% white. By 2020, it will be just 63% white. Over this 40-year span, the share of minorities will double, to 37%, as that of Hispanic workers nearly triples, to 17%. The problem is, both Hispanics and African Americans are far less likely to earn degrees than their white counterparts. If those gaps persist, the number of Americans age 26 to 64 who don't even have a high school degree could soar by 7 million, to 31 million, by 2020. Meanwhile, although the actual number of adults with at least a college degree would grow, their share of the workforce could fall by a percentage point, to 25.5%.

Of course educational spending will rise as average academic performance declines with our elites lying the whole way.

You can read the full report. American states with the biggest Hispanic immigrant influxes will suffer declining average living standards.

IF the educational gaps remain as they are (Projection 1), then personal income per capita in the United States is projected to decline from $21,591 in 2000 to $21,196 in 2020—a drop of $395 or 2% (in inflation-adjusted dollars; see figure 8). In contrast, according to the Bureau of Economic Analysis, personal income per capita had grown 41% nationally during the two decades prior to 2000. One consequence of such a decline in personal income would be a decrease in the nation’s tax base.

Under Projection 1, over one-third of the states would experience a decline in personal income per capita, including many currently with the highest levels, such as California, Colorado, Connecticut, Massachusetts, and New York. In these states, the decrease in income would be much more substantial than the U.S. average and could significantly affect their tax bases. For example, the projected decline in personal income per capita from 2000 to 2020 in Colorado would be $662, in New York $1,182, and in California $2,475.

Some triumphalist Americans, suckered by neocon propaganda against Europe, delight in making favorable demographic comparisons of the future of the United States as compared to Europe Europe. But even if America's demographic problems are not as bad as Europe's they are still very bad and we have no reason to gloat. We are in deep trouble. Our most productive groups are aging and reproducing below replacement rate. Worse yet, the problem can't be solved as long as our worthless political, media, and academic elites lie about race and enforce a taboo against the truth.

Update: How dumb is America becoming? The really bad news reported by Abigail and Stephan Thernstrom is that high school graduation rates greatly understate the academic differences between the races. The Thernstroms report that 12 grade Hispanics know little more than 8th grade whites.

"Blacks nearing the end of their high school education perform a little worse than white eighth-graders in both reading and U.S. history, and a lot worse in math and geography. In math and geography, indeed, they know no more than whites in the seventh grade. Hispanics do only a little better than African-Americans. In reading and U.S. history, their NAEP scores in their senior year of high school are a few points above those of whites in eighth grade. In math and geography, they are a few points lower."

Also see here for more on the Thernstrom data.

For more bad news see "Hispanic And Black High School Graduation Rates Very Low" and "Immigrants Do Not Improve Academically In Later Generations" and "Texas Standard School Test Results Are Warning On Immigration" and "Worsening English Language Problem With Immigrant Children".

Share |      By Randall Parker at 2005 November 17 08:56 PM  Immigration Societal Decay

Invisible Scientist said at November 17, 2005 9:42 PM:

According to various financial publications, the inflation-adjusted salaries are already showing negative growth, close to 2 % per year in average. Some of this salary deflation is due to the raw materials that are more expensive, but also foreign competition from higher IQ countries is definitely the future challenge.

Silchiuk said at November 18, 2005 4:21 AM:

Habla usted Espanol? Is being a good idea, no?

Big Bill said at November 18, 2005 5:35 AM:

What a wonderful opportunity to introduce your readers to La Griffe du Lion!

In January of this year, in his biannual white paper, Griffie laid the mathematical foundation for the coming reduction in real wages due to the influx of ignorant third world workers. See:


And while you are at it, peruse the other white papers Griffie has produced since 1999. They are all enlightening.

Rob said at November 18, 2005 6:16 AM:

The issue isn't declining real wages to me. It is what will happen to white wages> Equally important, what will happen to science tech and engineering. What if blacks and mexicans don't make much money. They don't anywhere on earth.

Don't get me wrong, I'd would vote for anyone I thought would enforce the border and deport the alien felons. But still, the question to ask, is always "Is this good for Americans" And we know who the americans are.

Jim said at November 18, 2005 8:37 AM:

It's worse than than the report would indicate.
Along with the percentage of Americans getting college degrees
potentially going down, the mix of college degrees would change.
More black and Hispanic students with less white students equals
less engineering and hard science degrees and more "-studies"
and education degrees.

Invisible Sc ientist said at November 18, 2005 9:04 AM:

Please note that the average IQ of college students is between 110 and 115. This means that even if your IQ is 120, your inflation-adjusted salary and net worth can actually decline by 1 % or even 2 % per year until 2020, and therefore by 2020, the average college graduate will probably be 20 % poorer on an inflation adjusted basis.

Thus the middle class whites are also included in the victim majority that is destined to become poorer. The culprit is the Darwinian competition, which is incidentally not a problem for those high IQ people (over 150) who will rule the world, it is the ones who rank low in the food chain that need to worry.

Invisible Scientist said at November 18, 2005 9:16 AM:

I must also add that even though the percentage of Americans getting college degrees might be going down, this is for the underprivileged minorities who are becoming a higher percentage of the society, because according to the college admission statistics, the competition to enter the top 50 universities, is FAR more brutal than ever. A lot more high school students with perfect grade point averages and extremely high test scores are routinely getting rejected by many of the top 10 colleges. In fact,it is because of the demand for the top 20 universities that the tuition fees are rising so fast.

raj said at November 18, 2005 9:25 AM:

Either we build a wall between us and Mexico and/or we utilize genetic engineering to improve intellect.

Kurt said at November 18, 2005 9:36 AM:

One idea is to open up the country to Chinese and other East Asian immigrants.

Rik said at November 18, 2005 12:00 PM:

Good thing then, that robots are going to enter the workforce pretty soon. You won't have to worry about lowleveljobs, because these will all be taken by robots. Hasta la vista!

Ivan Kirigin said at November 18, 2005 12:45 PM:


I've given that plenty of thought. You have it a bit backwards.

When robots are capable, you really have to start worrying about people working low-level jobs today, because they simply won't exist in the future.

This makes low-skilled laborers in a situation where they must either get more skills or get on a welfare scheme (or starve, but that really isn't plausible in today's environment).

Whether so many people can learn useful skills is a valid question. My opinion is that automated education is the key.


John S Bolton said at November 18, 2005 1:42 PM:

If the difference in quality of populations in terms of IQ need not be part of the analysis, why can't they just issue more diplomas? Having students in college who can't read beyond the 6th grade level is just welfare aggression and destruction of standards. Julian Simon said it is better to have more people and a lower per capita income. When everyone sees that we're going for lower output per person, the power seekers will just change their line to that of Simon. Always the goal of such power seekers is to do as much damage to civilization as can be gotten away with. This report is one of the ways that the government is softening the people up, to see if more can be gotten away with. Diversity makes us stronger and richer, except when it makes weaker and poorer. The naive would imagine that officials actually want per capita economic growth, if they can get us to go along with the idea that it is better to have more people, and lower per capita income.

crush41 said at November 18, 2005 3:26 PM:

End the damn visa lottery system, build a wall on the southern border, issue more h1-b visas and make them easy to renew, and institute soft eugenic policies like an end to the child credit and dependency phaseouts (making child tax credits progressive in nature would help even more) or something similar to what France has done. This is fixable.

Randall Parker said at November 18, 2005 5:41 PM:

Jim is quite right to say that the graduation rate statistics understate the depth of the problem. The average black or Hispanic 12th grader tests at the same level of knowledge and ability as the average white 8th grader.

Invisible Scientist said at November 18, 2005 9:12 PM:

The green card visa lottery system mentioned above, gives 50,000 permanent residency visas (which get converted into full citizenship after 5 years) to random foreigners. The best way to change this sytem is to require that those foreigners who will register for this lottery must meet some minimum requirements (such as intelligence test scores that correspond to an IQ over 136, which would put them in the top 1 % of the society. plus graduation from a good university program with high grades, and higher points for advanced degrees) just for the right to participate in the lottery. And the lottery should also be adjusted so that higher winning priorities are given for people with graduate degrees and higher IQ equivalent scores above the minimum 136. This would bring the best and the brightest people into the United States, which is absolutely vital for the survival of the United States.

Jorge D.C. said at November 18, 2005 11:08 PM:

One idea is to open up the country to Chinese and other East Asian immigrants.

Whoa. We don't need to replace Westerners with any other race of people on the planet. Repeat: It is never a solution to subsitute non-Westerners for Westerners in order to save the West. Asians have filled up our elite universities along with Jews and what is the result? An intense anti-Western atmosphere.

As far as as the depressing reality of American downward trending GDP/GNP well...duh...check out the list of top producing countries in the world. They are vastly white. It follows that the more brown a nation is, the more it underperforms economically.

lindenen said at November 18, 2005 11:54 PM:

They should also get rid of the family reunification law that allows people to bring in large numbers of moron relatives.

Rik said at November 19, 2005 5:56 AM:


You make things only worse. Allright, we worry about the people with few skills, who are currently working two or three jobs to make a living. With robots in the workforce, these folks are out of a job. Selfdriving cars are a hint of what's to come. Not everyone will welcome them (one thinks of Top Gear), but the chance to use that to reduce car-related accidents / deaths is simply too good to miss. Sayonara, chauffeurs and cabbies!

But what will we do with the people? You say they will live on a welfare scheme. Ah yes... I wonder who will pay for that? Why, it might be necessary to raise taxes. Of course, I hope we'll have molecular manufacturing, more or less at the same time, because it may be the only thing enabling people - who haven't got anything to do, but engaging in their hobby (for most humans, that's f***ing) - to make a living.

Automated education? Where's the use in that? Move a bit further: why not download the ability? But then, if you can download the ability, why not have it done by a machine?

Why not think or read some more, gospodin Kirgin?

Ivan Kirigin said at November 19, 2005 7:37 AM:

"Why not think or read some more, gospodin Kirgin?"

I don't think I'm interested in such flames, especially on a thread that is already quite zenophobic. But let me address some concerns.

For the automated driving, don't forget to add all delivery-men (from Fed-Ex to USPS), military recon and logistics, and the entire commercial transporation sector (especially considering the dangers of freight trucks.

Who would pay for it, the welfare? Well, first let me stress that I'm far more in favor of an inverse-income tax, if there were a welfare scheme, and that I would prefer self-reliance. But you need to take into account the vast increases in productivity caused by a robotics. Go back to the driving example: let's say N% of white-collar jobs require commuting for average 1hr a day. Now that time can be spent working, rather than driving. You've just increased productivity there 12%, at least.

The point is that robots are used to increase productivity. Increases in productivity are directly tied to long-term increases in the standard of living. Society gets _richer_, not poorer, even if more people are unemployed.

That is how you pay for it, if you need to. You can look to the rich welfare states in Northern Europe & Iceland. Granted, it is a very homogenous society, but they seem to be able to afford their welfare. Finland especially is a good example, as it was recently ranked #1 in competitive markets.

As for the education, 'downloading' is vague and further away than the changes I'm talking about. As is hard-AI. The point is that you can have revolution in robotics, without having creative robots. Humans are creative; robots won't be for some time. Increasing education to let people leverage his or her creativity is very much in everyone's best interest. Considering the rise in the value of aesthetics, (google 'the substance of style'), this trend will continue with a larger creative class of workers.

This is probably the main reason I'm not really worried about demographics, besides the proportion of people who haven't purchases annuities. Technology is advancing faster than linear models of demographic catastrophe.

Marvin said at November 19, 2005 7:55 AM:

How much lower does average IQ have to drop before the necessary 5% of the people who do 95% of all the work will drop to 4%, then 3%, then close to zero? The creative and innovative minds who drive progress, combined with the intelligent detail oriented hard workers who implement progress, are becoming fewer.

Yes, machines will become intelligent and take over much of the work being done by high IQ workers. Where will the profits from that go? Not to the swarms of low IQ workers and indigents. Nothing guarantees the conversion of the US to a total welfare state so much as the drop in intelligence that Randall refers to. Up until now the US has been the global driver of innovation and economic activity.

Randall Parker said at November 19, 2005 8:39 AM:


Yes, declining average IQ translates into a larger welfare state.

There's very much a balance of power aspect of the trend toward lower average IQ that is very important. Higher IQ people vote at higher rates and are more effective at pursuing their interests in the political sphere. But make the lower IQ people a large enough percentage of the voting public and the higher IQ people become politically disempowered. That's the scariest part of this as far as I'm concerned.

Do you want to be ruled by demagogues elected by dummies? That's what's in store. Think as ill as you want of our current generation of political leaders. I obviously hold a dim view of them. But in America future political leaders will be worse. They'll be more corrupt. They'll be even more prone than George W. Bush to reckless decisions that harm the national interest. They'll be less capable or inclined to solve problems. They'll be more inclined to support racial preferences. America is going to become more like Latin America.

Marvin said at November 19, 2005 8:45 AM:

America has too much of a thriving non-latin population, and resilient non-latin traditions to ever become like Latin America. Latin America is what it is because of the customs and mores brought over from Spain and Portugal. Think more like France and Chirac/de Villepin. Perhaps Italy. There really has never been another country like the US in its genuine diversity, and probably will not be for a long time. The coming of machine intelligence will help the US maintain leadership in at least a few fields, for a few more decades.

John S Bolton said at November 19, 2005 1:13 PM:

When the average IQ of the workforce declines, technology has to go backward in many fields. The availability of labor at a usable wage, is a command to use more of it, less productively. The problem is that technology is like an obese diabetic on a bicycle, if he doesn't maintain overall forward motion, he falls over and suffers lasting damage. Zimbabwe and much of tropical Africa show what that looks like, and our officials and their scholars are pursuing the Zimbabwe model. Everything is about how they can stir up racial animosity, envy and an insensate willfulness in defiance of truths about production and cultural advancement. Increasing the numbers in the top 1% of today's range can make up for some of this; but, surprise, officials and their leftist scholars direct sabotaging at this small element in particular, as in Zimbabwe. Also, a ranked system is necessary to have an IQ elite make up for deterioration in the masses.

Randall Parker said at November 19, 2005 4:40 PM:

There's also the drain on higher IQ people to basically service the lower IQ people. A larger fraction of the smart people will need to becomem doctors, nurses, prosecutors, judges, and other jobs that will provide services to or deal with the consequences of the actions of dumber people.

People who get employed to be doctors or judges dealing with dummies will not become scientists, engineers, factory managers, computer programmers, and others who create wealth. So a smaller fraction of the smart people will be wealth creators.

We need to autoomate dealing with dummies so that smart people minimize the drain of having dummies around.

Jorge D.C. said at November 19, 2005 11:29 PM:

...especially on a thread that is already quite zenophobic.

Yes, xenophobia, that embarrassing social disease. In the USA it can be defined as any attempt by whites to assert their right to exist as a people, a nation, a culture, and worst of all...a race.

An "intense dislike of people from other countries" is exactly what has built the greatest societies on earth. Separation is and always has been necessary. Discrimination is and always has been critical.

The ability to identify and condemn lower civilizations is THE target of the thought police.

Embracing xenophobia = rejecting marxism.

Invisible Scientist said at November 20, 2005 8:25 AM:

Jorge D.C. wrote:
"The ability to identify and condemn lower civilizations is THE target of the thought police."

But it also seems that the "superiority" of certain civilizations, often relies on the raw materials of the inferior civilizations. For instance, both the WW I and WW II were between superior white countries (England, France, Germany, Italy, Russia) who were fighting for the conquest of raw materials mainly in the regions controlled by other superior civilizations. But most of these raw materials were located in regions that were previousy invaded by one of these civilizations. For instance, even the Russian empire was initially in regions that did not contain too many raw materials, but then they conqured other regions of Asia which were not previously Russian. And until recently, inferior races, cultures etc were not an issue for the European civilization, since there was minimal non-white immigration to Europe during the previous two centuries. What I am saying is that the cause of this current world tension is not simply the inferior civilizations, but some perhaps the intrinsic nature of the human nature.

Marvin said at November 20, 2005 9:58 AM:

Jorge writes: "Embracing xenophobia = rejecting marxism"

Since most contemporary leftists go by the labels "postmodern multiculturalists", it is interesting to contemplate how leftism went from marxism to multiculturalism. A multiculturalist becomes palsied in his power to discriminate. He becomes weakened as categories and qualities blur into one another. Soon they all look alike, become equivalent. Classical Marxists were not so palsied.

Discrimination is what makes us human. As we voluntarily weaken our abilities to discriminate between the good and the bad, the functional and the dysfunctional, the destructive and the constructive, we become good leftists. In making the reverse journey, we leave leftism behind.

The bigot is the brother of the leftist. The bigot cannot discriminate between the good and the bad. The bigot, like the leftist, is blinded by superficialities. The Al Qaeda bigots and the postmodern bigots of western academia, are true brothers. Mentally palsied of their own volition.

gah gah said at November 21, 2005 1:29 PM:

Returning to the main subject, where is genetic engineering going to fit into all of this?
Will it come in time to alleviate this downward trend? Will it be legalized in time? One hopes so. But then, it would probably only be those who are already wealthy/high IQ who'll be planning their pregnancies around this technology, and it seems unlikely that they would increase the amount of children they have just because such technology is available.

Randall Parker said at November 21, 2005 6:38 PM:

gah gah,

First we have to identify all the genetic variations that influence cognition.

Then we have to figure out what other effects each variation has.

Then we need to develop the ability to do gene therapy either to sperm and eggs or to fertilized embryos.

Then the procedures have to get approved.

Then the procedures have to become cheap enough.

Then we can wait 20 more years for people to grow up who got their IQ boosted as embryos.

I'm afraid that's all 30 to 40 years before it plays out. Meanwhile its dumb and dumber.

Sal FERNANDEZ said at November 24, 2005 9:51 AM:

How about you all kill yourselves and learn to watch what you say. I myself am hispanic and an educated person and this website is EXTREMELY offending and the claims are ridiculous. I can't even believe what i'm reading

NiCOLE said at November 24, 2005 9:53 AM:


Anonymous said at December 14, 2009 4:06 PM:

You sound very intelligent typing in all caps. You are really going against the stereotype here^^^

Milind R said at October 5, 2010 3:07 PM:

Well since I'm Indian and in no hurry to get out here soon, I presume to be able to read this impassively and impartially.

It sounds extremely offending, Fernandez is right... Is this a common issue in America? Whites, Blacks, Hispanics etc? I thought it was only outsourcing which affected you people.

Of course, races have differences in everything, but generalising it to say that any particular race AS A WHOLE is disadvantaged sounds very wrong. Unable to cite of course, but repeated studies keep contradicting one another about IQ capabilities of races. I believe home and neighbourhood are TRULY the factors that influence average IQ. While we are all caught up in judging a student who did not get something others got very easily, a single visit to the locality of his house may reveal the cause for the apparent refusal to learn. There is simply no way for a child to enjoy learning (That's how you get really educated people.. The rest are equivalent to pizza delivery boys) without suitable surroundings.

Mthson said at October 5, 2010 5:59 PM:

Milind R,

I'm sure you're very intelligent, so don't end up on the wrong side of history on this issue simply because it makes your heart feel good. It's a logical (and factual) impossibility that individuals can vary enormously in innate intellectual temperament, but groups of individuals somehow all have an identical distribution of alleles that influence cognitive complexity.

Live in a fantasy world if you wish http://www.nytimes.com/2005/06/03/science/03gene.html

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