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Sunday, March 02, 2008

This week's asshat

Introducing Charlotte Allen, from the Washington Post. Before I deconstruct her rampant idiocy, let me allow her to spew a few of her own words:

The theory that women are the dumber sex [...] is amply supported by neurological and standardized-testing evidence. Men's and women's brains not only look different, but men's brains are bigger than women's (even adjusting for men's generally bigger body size). The important difference is in the parietal cortex, which is associated with space perception. Visuospatial skills, the capacity to rotate three-dimensional objects in the mind, at which men tend to excel over women, are in turn related to a capacity for abstract thinking and reasoning, the grounding for mathematics, science and philosophy. While the two sexes seem to have the same IQ on average (although even here, at least one recent study gives males a slight edge), there are proportionally more men than women at the extremes of very, very smart and very, very stupid.

Do I need to point out that someone who starts a paragraph with "women are the dumber sex" and ends up "the two sexes seem to have the same IQ on average" has not thought through her premise. Also, using cultural artifacts like Oprah, Grey's Anatomy, and Chick Lit to prove her thesis amounts to a tautology based solely on her own stupid tastes. ("I think this art is stupid. Women like this art. Women are stupid, QED.")

And god help us, pointing out that Hillary Clinton has run a bad campaign is NOT a example of gender stupidity. Good lord, a presidential candidate is going to be a statistical outlier from any population. Aside from that, does this woman actually think the candidates run their own campaigns? They actually hire people to do that.

The author herself is the best argument for her thesis, and a weak one at that.