Saturday, January 22, 2005

On Summers... 

For those interested in the recent brouhaha surrounding Lawrence Summers' comments there's a fairly reasonable rant over at PZ Myers and another (with some link to additional empirical research) at Crooked Timber. I have little of value to add here beyond the note that university presidents probably shouldn't be in the business of making broad generalizations - which seem to have some small degree of explicatory power for their university hiring practices - in public settings.

I would further note here, a fact which seems to get little play in most popular accounts of the Summers remarks, that Harvard offers tenure to approximately 25 people a year: even if we assume that the genetic differences between the quantitative ability of men and women are well understood, empirical research suggests that they are IN NO WAY large enough to explain the distribution of women and men among the Harvard faculty.

Thursday, January 20, 2005

Catholic Marriage in Spain 

Within my experience (perhaps obviously) it's interesting how many otherwise observant Catholics choose to ignore the Church's council on birth control (i.e. don't use it). Along these lines, it's big news when a portion of the church seems to be almost saying "condoms are OK". Spanish bishops seem to have reached a point where they at least in the neighborhood of talking meaningfully about birth control. Perhaps this, more than the ongoing inauguration, is really today's sign that the apocalypse is upon us.

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