Nobody likes to be called a dummy by a dummy.

US The Most Powerful Empire In History - How?

To assess public opinion on creationism, Gallup asked:

  Which of the following statements comes closest to your views on the origin and development of human beings?
  1) Human beings have developed over millions of years from less advanced forms of life, but God guided this process,
  2) Human beings have developed over millions of years from less advanced forms of life, but God had no part in this process,
  3) God created human beings pretty much in their present form at one time within the last 10,000 years or so?

Polled in November 2004, 38% of respondents chose (1), 13% chose (2), 45% chose (3), and 4% offered a different or no opinion. These results are also similar to those from previous Gallup polls, which extend back to 1982.


http://www.ncseweb.org/resources/news/2004/US/724_public_view_of_creationism_and_11_19_2004.asp

Thud. Thud. Thud. (My head hitting the desk)

45% chose 3.

Words fail me.
Permalink Mongo 
August 11th, 2005
maybe its true.
Permalink Jesus H Christ 
August 11th, 2005
Maybe. And and monkeys could fly out my butt!

Thud. Thud. Thud.
Permalink Mongo 
August 11th, 2005
its images like that make religion sound attractive.

monkeys. mongos butt.

Thud. Thud. Thud.
Permalink Jesus H Christ 
August 11th, 2005
What are the percentages for other countries?
Permalink Rich Rogers 
August 11th, 2005
That page has this one:

"To assess public opinion on the evidence for evolution, Gallup asked, "Do you think that Charles Darwin's theory of evolution is a scientific theory that has been well-supported by evidence, just one of many theories and one that has not been well-supported by evidence, or don't you know enough about it to say?" Polled in November 2004, 35% of the respondents said that evolution is well-supported by evidence, 35% said that it is not, 29% said that they didn't know enough about it to reply, and 1% expressed no opinion."

I would answer none of the above because I am pedantic and knowledgable.
Permalink Rich Rogers 
August 11th, 2005
Remember - the *average* IQ is 100.

Mathematically, half the people around have a lower IQ.

;)

Philo
Permalink Philo 
August 11th, 2005
<g> not to be *too* pedantic, ut isn't it the median that mathematically puts half of its numbers below it?

whats the median IQ?
Permalink Jesus H Christ 
August 11th, 2005
looks as if 100 *is* the median IQ, Ill assume that Philo just misspoke himself.

his point is still valid :) everyone else is stupid.
Permalink Jesus H Christ 
August 11th, 2005
If it was just stupidity, it wouldn't bother me that much. If it was just disagreement over something complex, it wouldn't bother me that much. Note I didn't bitch about choice 1, I can see how intelligent people could differ over that.

There's something else at work here, and it's more than a little frightening. It really is like some sort of weird disenlightenment going on.
Permalink Mongo 
August 11th, 2005
Philo made no mistake there. The median is the kind of average defined exactly as Philo described it. There are three kinds of average: the mean, the median and the mode. Maybe you were confusing averages in general with the mean in particular?
Permalink Ian Boys 
August 11th, 2005
<shrug>

"By definition, a median is a statistical term identifying a piece of data (number) that divides numerically ordered data into two equal halves. In easier terms, the median is the middle piece of data when
those data are placed in numerical order."


not sure what that has to do with any type of an average?

is there a definition of average that includes the median?
Permalink Jesus H Christ 
August 11th, 2005
Yes, as Ian pointed out, all three of those are types of averages, although in casual conversation, the term "average" typically taken to mean the arithmetic mean.
Permalink Mongo 
August 11th, 2005
" all three of those are types of averages"

huh, somehow I missed that. what is the definition of average such that it includes the median?
Permalink Jesus H Christ 
August 11th, 2005
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Average

In mathematics, there are numerous methods for calculating the average or central tendency of a list of n numbers

Other averages (beyond the 3 mentioned)

The geometric mean, harmonic mean, generalized mean, weighted mean, truncated mean, and interquartile mean
Permalink Mongo 
August 11th, 2005
Let's look at the exact propositions:

"Human beings have developed over millions of years from less advanced forms of life, but God guided this process"

I think we can agree that we have no conclusive scientific proof of this.

"Human beings have developed over millions of years from less advanced forms of life, but God had no part in this process"

I think we can agree that we have no conclusive scientific proof of this.

"God created human beings pretty much in their present form at one time within the last 10,000 years or so"

I think we can agree that we have no conclusive scientific proof of this.
Permalink Rich Rogers 
August 11th, 2005
"45% chose 3. Words fail me."

Me too. I thought it would have been higher.
Permalink  
August 11th, 2005
interesting. it appears that there is *no* definition of the average such that it includes the median, its just an accepted fact.

hate that :)
Permalink Jesus H Christ 
August 11th, 2005
> US The Most Powerful Empire In History - How?

On the backs of people that didn't believe that crap. Now with the push to disolve the separation their won't be as many people anymore and technological innovation will shift to other countries. The US can't win just on resources anymore. Yes, we work more, but that isn't enough.
Permalink son of parnas 
August 12th, 2005
"Polled in November"

Where? what's the demographic? I can't believe that people can be that stupid - except of course 50% plus population of the US.

AND NEVER UNDERESTIMATE THE POWER OF MORONS.
Permalink Dan Denman 
August 12th, 2005
"Maybe. And and monkeys could fly out my butt!"

Fwap, fwap, fwap...

So 80+% of respondents think man evolved - and in response monkeys fly out your butt cheeks.

I'll bet you that 80+% of Americans consider Windows a well designed operation system. Perhaps it is.

Whoopee. How would they know? Would they know the difference between async IO and overlapped IO?

And what is your specific genetics expertise that you could even start to describe the analytical aspects of mutation?

In Michael Green's The Elegant Universe he often takes the contrary side of his own arguments, saying things like "if you think that the symmetry aspects of string theory carry alot of baggage then you would not be alone..." - and go on to cite plenty of respected reasons and people who have such objections.

But never insult the contrarian idea. Ohhh, but with zoologists, anthropologists, and biologists... 5 years ago it was preposterous that dinosaurs were the ancestors of birds - and today you're an idiot if you question the idea.

The great thing about physics is that no one consider a theory a fact until its tested - no matter how elegant and self consistent. And the moment a shred of evidence is found that conflicts with a theory, all derivative works are examined for hints of the flaw, perterbation, anomoly so that a correct theory can be worked on.

And the math - its all built on math and analytical reason. Where is the "standard model" for Darwin? Where is the unifying math that attempts to tie it all together and be placed out in the open where all take a hammer to it, smash it, and put it back together?

Only in genetics - real science if you'll pardon me. One with an analytical framework and testable empirical data. There is the equivalent to the physics version of the "standard model".

Since you are an expert (I presume, since you are so passionate about your field of expertise) that you will indulge the rest of us in explaining, using genetic models, how say man descended from an ape.

?Off style: just pull it out of your ass.

Fwap, fwap, fwap...
Permalink hoser 
August 12th, 2005
Hmmm. Methinks I did not make myself clear. To put a fine point on it:

You think others are idiots because they don't understand the science.

I say: you don't understand the science. Explain it.
Permalink hoser 
August 12th, 2005
"I say: you don't understand the science. Explain it"

who are you to hold yourself in judgment in others?

clearly you believe yourself to be an expert in the field, or you wouldn't have responded so passionately.

I say: you dont understand the science. explain it.
Permalink Jesus H Christ 
August 12th, 2005
Lots of monkey's flying around this room, don't you think?
Permalink hoser 
August 12th, 2005
For your information, it does not exist.
Permalink hoser 
August 12th, 2005
Rich Rogers: Hate to be blunt, but what a poor argument.

You placed one red marble and one blue marble in a jar. Then you closed your eyes and picked a marble out.

Option 1. You picked a red marble. I think we can agree that we have no conclusive scientific proof of this.

Option 2. You picked a blue marble. I think we can agree that we have no conclusive scientific proof of this.

Option 3. You picked a green marble. I think we can agree that we have no conclusive scientific proof of this.

Cogito ergo sum, you must be just as likely to have picked out a red, blue, or green marble, right?

It's the clause that poll options 1 and 2 share, "Human beings have developed over millions of years from less advanced forms of life", that we have conclusive proof of (meeting varying definitions of "conclusive").

In other words, we have proof of (1 xor 2), and no proof of 3. That does *not* mean 3 is as likely as 1 or 2 taken independently, as you have implied.
Permalink Pierce Hanley 
August 12th, 2005
hoser:

I'd say kindly go fuck yourself? how about that?
Permalink Dan Denman 
August 12th, 2005
Asking for something like I asked for would be like saying "solve Schroedinger's Equation for Uranium". Nobody even tries - its ridiculous. But they can for Hydrogen, right? And implications can be drawn, models perturbed and inferences drawn. And if you get far enough away from an U atom, it looks kind of like an H if you squint.

Now that I'm sort of answering/leading my own question... How about it? Where is the beef?
Permalink hoser 
August 12th, 2005
Denman seems up to the task.
Permalink hoser 
August 12th, 2005
sorry hoser. before Im convinced that you have any right to stand in judgment of others in this thread, how about you prove your credentials? what makes you up to the task of judging any answers?
Permalink Jesus H Christ 
August 12th, 2005
I'm hardly qualified. But we've got the universe of experts all gathered right here.

You pretend to think that I'm unique in passing judgement on upon this popultation? Holy shit, you're one naive bastard.
Permalink hoser 
August 12th, 2005
"You pretend to think that I'm unique"

nah, I just think you are a prat for sounding like such an ass.
Permalink Jesus H Christ 
August 12th, 2005
Well, that was an interesting diversion.

I'll check back tomorrow for Mongo's thesis.
Permalink hoser 
August 12th, 2005
An IQ of a 100 is not the median but the mode, sheesh. IQ is a pretty pointless measurement and full of all kinds of cultural and gender anomalies but to think its the median and that half the population have less than a 100 IQ is to entirely misunderstand its meaning.

Half the population is meant to have an IQ approaching or near 100.
Permalink Simon Lucy 
August 12th, 2005
so? either way we are saying that half the population is stupid, right?
Permalink Jesus H Christ 
August 12th, 2005
OMG
Permalink hoser 
August 12th, 2005
See, almost everything on God's Green Earth can be found here on JoS. Sometimes you gotta read the main forum. A guy named Dino was illustratin' modes to us just the other day.

I learn so much on JoS - ah feel downright smart.
Permalink hoser 
August 12th, 2005
Whoops, forgot the link:

http://discuss.joelonsoftware.com/default.asp?joel.3.170189.3
Permalink hoser 
August 12th, 2005
I'm going to put my patient tone of voice on now.

In the regular IQ spread the following table is generally used for the normal distribution of IQ in the US population, it varies slightly in other western countries.


Score  Description  % of Population

130+  Very superior 2.2%
120-129 Superior    6.7%
110-119 High average 16.1%
90-109  Average    50%
80-89  Low average  16.1%
70-79  Borderline  6.7%
Below 70 Extremely low 2.2%


If you notice its a bell curve with 50% of the scores clustered around the middle, so in a normal distribution 25% are less than the norm and 25% is greater than the norm. There are two important things to take out of this, one that IQ is a statistical measurement and one that is bogus in respect to mixed populations and cultures the other is that what was 90-109 30 years ago is not necessarily the same as it is today.

If the general 'intelligence' of the population increases then there will still be a normally distributed set around the 90-109 mark.

Again, its entirely bogus.
Permalink Simon Lucy 
August 12th, 2005
right, so 50% of the population is stupid, right?
Permalink Jesus H Christ 
August 12th, 2005
Nope, though your level is plummeting rapidly.
Permalink Simon Lucy 
August 12th, 2005
1. I thought the standard distribution should put 64% of the population within 1 standard deviation, not 50.

2. A lot of IQ tests put the standard deviation at 15 points rather than 10. I think just to screw with people and give them artificially inflated numbers.
Permalink MarkTAW 
August 12th, 2005
Sorry, 68 not 64. I got it confused with two standard deviations (84). 68%, 84%, 96%, 99.7%.
Permalink MarkTAW 
August 12th, 2005
I think you're probably right about standard distribution, that would include the slices immediately before and after the 50% slice.
Permalink Simon Lucy 
August 12th, 2005
"Nope, though your level is plummeting rapidly."

<g> ..thats just hurtful..


so how much of the population is stupid?
Permalink Jesus H Christ 
August 12th, 2005
16%. That's the percentage below 1 standard deviation. 68% is within 1 standard deviation, which means 16% is above, and 16% is below.

But personally, I prefer "everyone who disagrees with me." It's a much more useful metric.
Permalink MarkTAW 
August 12th, 2005
And moron isn't measurable on this scale as its supposed to be someone with the mental age of between 7 and 12 yet 7 and 12 year olds can have IQs of any score.
Permalink Simon Lucy 
August 12th, 2005
That's why "anyone who disagrees with me" is so much better.
Permalink MarkTAW 
August 12th, 2005
World powers have gone very far with masses of uninformed people. Notice that all we need are smart people used by the top levels of our government, as our country is still structured with top-dog hierarchies. I've heard the estimate that about 80% of our population can be very ignorant. And in fact may often be trained that way in school, since social unrest would occur if people are overqualified for the jobs they will likely have.

Many people want to upgrade the skill levels of our education in a certain way to maintain the US's comparative advantage in tech, but this may be a doomed strategy. And I'm sure they're not out for a "progressive" education to pump out very questioning scientists.
Permalink Tayssir John Gabbour 
August 12th, 2005
Tayssir John Gabbour - Not an idiot.

See. Easy.
Permalink MarkTAW 
August 12th, 2005
Ah yes, ignorance has little to do with intelligence and the type of education available to people is always politically decided.
Permalink Simon Lucy 
August 12th, 2005
"What are the percentages for other countries?"

I can't recall the exact percentages as it was months ago I read the actual Gallup poll results, but I do remember that Australia, Canada, and the UK all had a significantly lower number of people picking 3 as an answer.
Permalink Mat Hall 
August 12th, 2005
...and presumably the same number of stupid people.

I guess that makes sense. stupid people believe what they are told.
Permalink Jesus H Christ 
August 12th, 2005
What did you expect?

UK - We don't like your religion, so we'll make our own.

Australia - Founded by prisoners.

Canada - Anything to be different from the USA. Quelque chose &#234;tre diff&#233;rent des Etats-Unis.
Permalink MarkTAW 
August 12th, 2005
The poll reminds me of the old joke about the US. They should just remove the warning labels from everything and let nature (evolution) takes its course.
Permalink el 
August 12th, 2005
"UK - We don't like your religion, so we'll make our own."

Ang to be honest very few people actually believe in it anyway. You're "Church of England" by default, but in general people's belief is so vague as to border on agnosticism. I met more people with some sort of religious conviction in my few years in the US than I have in the rest of my life, and was always faintly {a|be}mused by the number of families who went to church together on a Sunday.

This is probably due to the general sense of embarassment that the British feel about any strong displays of emotion or passion for anything. Stiff upper lip and all that... :)
Permalink Mat Hall 
August 12th, 2005
> <g> not to be *too* pedantic, ut isn't it the median that mathematically puts half of its numbers below it? whats the median IQ?

It too is 100. IQ is assumed to be (or is defined as) a normal distribution (i.e. a symmetrical bell curve) whose mean/median is 100 and whose standard deviation is (I think) 15.
Permalink Christopher Wells 
August 12th, 2005
IOW - IQ is the measure of the average. People don't conform to the IQ standard, the IQ is a measure of the people. Just like average height and average weight.
Permalink MarkTAW 
August 12th, 2005
... except since there is no external yardstick, it has a moving center. As Simon pointed out, an IQ of 131 at the age of 12 means that you fall outside of 3 standard deviations relative to other 12 year olds.
Permalink MarkTAW 
August 12th, 2005
"Asking for something like I asked for would be like saying "solve Schroedinger's Equation for Uranium". Nobody even tries - its ridiculous."

Hmm, 20 years ago I was doing just that, using computer programs and clever approximations off course, but results can be pretty close to the real physics.

http://www.iop.org/EJ/abstract/0953-8984/1/44/009
Permalink Erik Springelkamp 
August 12th, 2005
1. This is the nice thing about Science versus Faith -- with Science, something is true, despite what people believe about it.

2. I question the population they asked the question of. Although the "red vs blue" state voting also seems to match this distribution. I do find it VERY hard to believe that 45% of American population reject Evolution, or embrace Creationism.

3. We live in a democracy, so the votes of these 45% definitely would sway Congress, and the education system. I don't see 45% of our schools promoting Creationism, though there are a few key school boards doing this.
Permalink AllanL5 
August 12th, 2005
Oh, and the "median" -- the value half the population is above, and half the population is below -- matches the "mean" -- the mathematically average value -- only when you are dealing with a "normal" distribution.

A "normal" distribution is that nice 'bell-curve' you keep getting.

Fortunately, when you lump humans together, you tend to get 'normal' distributions -- and I assume this applies to IQ scores.

Also, one of the effects of the "central-limit theorem" is that when you take multiple SAMPLEs of a population, then the value spread of those SAMPLEs will be a 'normal' distribution, whose mean matches the mean of the population.
Permalink AllanL5 
August 12th, 2005
If ever there be any Considerable Blow given to the Devil's Kingdom, it must be, by Youth Excellently Educated. It is a serious Thing, a weighty Thing, and a thing that hath much of the Interest of Christ, and of Christianity in it, that Youth be well-trained up, and that Schools, and School-Masters be maintained. Learning is an unwelcome guest to the Devil, and therefore he would fain starve it out.
Permalink Cotton Mather 
August 12th, 2005
I would (says one) have every zealous Man examine his Heart thoroughly, and, I believe, he will often find that what he calls a Zeal for his Religion, is either Pride, Interest or Ill-nature...
Permalink Silence Dogood 
August 12th, 2005
"interesting. it appears that there is *no* definition of the average such that it includes the median, its just an accepted fact."

http://www.bartleby.com/61/53/A0545300.html

Also, see:
http://www.bartleby.com/64/C004/008.html

Also, to correct somebody up above, the normal distribution isn't the only one with the same median and mean. Any symmetrical distribution would have that property, such as uniform or t- distributions, for example.
Permalink Kevin 
August 12th, 2005
> Any symmetrical distribution would have that property, such as uniform or t- distributions, for example.

It doesn't even need to be symmetrical, e.g.

1, 3, 5, 8, 8

has mean and median 5.
Permalink Christopher Wells 
August 12th, 2005
If I believe that human were created 30000 years ago in its current form which option should I choose?

100000 years ago?

1000000 years ago?
Permalink Rick Tang 
August 12th, 2005
The reply should be a dial marked continuously stupid.
Permalink Simon Lucy 
August 12th, 2005
Ah, Kevin, hoist on my own petard, once again. You are correct sir, I should have left out the 'only'. I should have said "a nice property of the 'normal' distribution is that the median and the mean are the same."
Permalink AllanL5 
August 12th, 2005
Here are the percentages between different countries for just the evolution vs creation question:

http://www.religioustolerance.org/rel_comp.htm

Note that the US, Poland and Russia are the three countries listed that don't believe in evolution.

Here is the actual study we are talking about, including the sought after breakdown between social and ethnic classes:

http://www.religioustolerance.org/ev_publi.htm

Note thaht it is women and blacks who believe in creationism. :-)
Permalink Rich Rogers 
August 12th, 2005
Also, I want to reiterate that this study is worthless because the categories are so incredibly bad. Also, I am very skeptical that half the public believes in young earth creationism. That seems to be a relatively rare belief held in my encounters. Maybe 10-20% I'd believe, but the 50% figure seems impossible.
Permalink Rich Rogers 
August 12th, 2005
In Russia, only 12% of them 'know God exists', so its not religion that makes them doubt evolution.
Permalink Rich Rogers 
August 12th, 2005
The comparison of the GB & the US was interesting and matches what we've seen here over the years. It's also worth looking at the difference between GB & Northern Ireland.
Permalink a cynic writes... 
August 13th, 2005
Now here's something interesting:

"Man has developed over millions of years from less advanced forms of life, but God guided this process, including man's creation."

Scientists: 40% (!)

http://www.religioustolerance.org/ev_publi.htm

Now, "God guided this process" over millions of years, is perfectly consist with what most of the Intelligent Design folks are saying. Although, the category "scientists" does include non-biological sciences, as well.

So why are all of you trying to crucify a group whose views reflect what about 40% of all scientists believe? Sure, it's a minority view point, but a rather large minority view point. How many scientists have to adhere to a theory before it's permissible to discuss it?
Permalink Jim Rankin 
August 15th, 2005
Well you'd have to say that they're American scientists and so heir to the culture they were born in. The word guided could mean a great many different things, it certainly wouldn't be anti-religious for a scientist to accept that evolution proceeeded without any intervention and at the same time had a personal belief in a God.

There's a great prejudice in American society that adherence to faith has to be explicit, especially amongst those in public life, this no doubt has an effect on public pronouncements by such people.
Permalink Simon Lucy 
August 15th, 2005

This topic was orginally posted to the off-topic forum of the
Joel on Software discussion board.

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