, 16 tweets, 12 min read Read on Twitter
In response to @nntaleb's smear campaign against @Quillette I'm going to put a few things on the record.

I created Quillette in late 2015 after dropping out of a masters in forensic psychology. My aim was (and is) to provide a space for journalism that is informed by evidence.
@nntaleb @Quillette In particular, I wanted to provide a space where academics & others could challenge blank slate dogma.

In my view, blank slate dogma is pernicious. It exists on both the Left and the Right. Here is one example of us taking a look at it on the Right. quillette.com/2017/01/12/the…
@nntaleb @Quillette My interest in countering blank slate dogma sprung from my profound disillusionment with contemporary feminism, which from my point of view was becoming increasingly anti-intellectual & anti-science. I wrote this in 2013 clairelehmann.net/2013/08/22/how…
@nntaleb @Quillette In 2017, I wrote an article for Commentary, about the price women pay because of the widespread denial of sex differences. The medical community's avoidance of studying this topic has led to women overdosing on sleeping pills for decades. commentarymagazine.com/articles/the-x…
@nntaleb @Quillette Yet gender is not the only area in which blank slate dogma operates. We've also published articles on heritability, and the counter-intuitive results of decades of twin-studies research.
@nntaleb @Quillette But we have never hosted an argument which claims that genes or biology account for 100% of human behavioural or psychological outcomes.

The argument is simply that genes and biology account for more than zero.
@nntaleb @Quillette Have we published on intelligence? Yes. Admittedly, intelligence is an incredibly complex area of study, & technical discussion is best suited to journals.

That being said, the denial of intelligence is not helpful in a society that is rapidly changing.
@nntaleb @Quillette People like to paint intelligence research as an exercise in vanity. Smart people like to prove how smart they are, etc. But who actually gets their IQ tested? Kids being screened for learning difficulties. Adults who've had brain injuries. Elderly suffering dementia.
@nntaleb @Quillette A good real world example of the utility of IQ testing is in army. When the army stopped screening for a certain level of cognitive functioning, it cost lives. The soldier's own lives.
@nntaleb @Quillette Have we published on race? Yes we have.

The writing on this topic speaks for itself.

We abhor racism and yet do not believe that race is merely a social construct, (another pernicious blank slate dogma that has repercussions in the real world).
@nntaleb @Quillette Importantly: we have never argued that the science on these topics is settled or in any way complete.

Science is always provisional. But our editorial position is that people should be allowed to hypothesise & research without having their lives destroyed by smear campaigns.
@nntaleb @Quillette We have to put all of this in context: we live at a time where it is controversial to say that a woman is not the same as a man, where you're not allowed to notice that some people are naturally bright & others struggle, that some people are better at some sports than others.
@nntaleb @Quillette All we are doing is pushing back on the dogma which says:

"You are not allowed to ask this question"
"You are not allowed to study this topic"
"You are not allowed state observable facts"
@nntaleb @Quillette Now @nntaleb has weighed in with his characteristic belligerence. He doesn't like IQ tests so he has attempted to "debunk" them using math. His debunking has convinced no-one in the relevant fields & has only impressed his gaggle of sycophants.
@nntaleb @Quillette I politely asked him to put forward some suggestions as to how psychology could improve its methodology and he flew off the handle.

He's now smearing me, @Quillette & anyone who reads us as neo-Nazi.
@nntaleb @Quillette If you think pushing back against blank slate dogma is easy, it's not.

It's really not. But somebody has to do it.

If you've read this far, please support the work we do.

Missing some Tweet in this thread?
You can try to force a refresh.

Like this thread? Get email updates or save it to PDF!

Subscribe to Claire Lehmann
Profile picture

Get real-time email alerts when new unrolls are available from this author!

This content may be removed anytime!

Twitter may remove this content at anytime, convert it as a PDF, save and print for later use!

Try unrolling a thread yourself!

how to unroll video

1) Follow Thread Reader App on Twitter so you can easily mention us!

2) Go to a Twitter thread (series of Tweets by the same owner) and mention us with a keyword "unroll" @threadreaderapp unroll

You can practice here first or read more on our help page!

Follow Us on Twitter!

Did Thread Reader help you today?

Support us! We are indie developers!

This site is made by just three indie developers on a laptop doing marketing, support and development! Read more about the story.

Become a Premium Member ($3.00/month or $30.00/year) and get exclusive features!

Become Premium

Too expensive? Make a small donation by buying us coffee ($5) or help with server cost ($10)

Donate via Paypal Become our Patreon

Thank you for your support!