"Malaysia Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad and the Sultan of Johor are seen in a blue Proton Saga... "When asked whether there is any tension with the sultan, Dr Mahathir said: “No, I don’t see anything because I went to see him and he drove me to the airport. I don’t want to comment on the sultans because if I say anything that is not good then it’s not nice because he is the sultan”"

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Tuesday, March 05, 2019

Links - 5th March 2019 (2)

Different impacts of resources on opposite sex ratings of physical attractiveness by males and females - "Parental investment hypotheses regarding mate selection suggest that human males should seek partners featured by youth and high fertility. However, females should be more sensitive to resources that can be invested on themselves and their offspring. Previous studies indicate that economic status is indeed important in male attractiveness. However, no previous study has quantified and compared the impact of equivalent resources on male and female attractiveness. Annual salary is a direct way to evaluate economic status. Here, we combined images of male and female body shape with information on annual salary to elucidate the influence of economic status on the attractiveness ratings by opposite sex raters in American, Chinese and European populations. We found that ratings of attractiveness were around 1000 times more sensitive to salary for females rating males, compared to males rating females. These results indicate that higher economic status can offset lower physical attractiveness in men much more easily than in women. Neither raters' BMI nor age influenced this effect for females rating male attractiveness. This difference explains many features of human mating behavior and may pose a barrier for male engagement in low-consumption lifestyles."

Gender Asymmetry in Educational and Income Assortative Marriage - "Between 1980 and 2008–2012, educational assortative mating reversed from a tendency for women to marry up to a tendency for women to marry down in education, whereas the tendency for women to marry men with higher incomes than themselves persisted. Moreover, in both time periods, the tendency for women to marry up in income was generally greater among couples in which the wife's education level equaled or surpassed that of the husband than among couples in which the wife was less educated than the husband"
Even educated women like rich men

Mating markets and bargaining hands: Mate preferences for attractiveness and resources in two national U.S. studies - "Men and women differed in the percentage indicating it was “desirable” or “essential” that their potential partner was good-looking (92% vs. 84%; d = .39), had a slender body (80% vs. 58%; d = .53), had a steady income (74% vs. 97%; d = 1.17), and made/will make a lot of money (47% vs. 69%; d = −.49). There were also gender differences in whether it was “very important” or “a must have” their partner made at least as much money as they do (24% vs. 46%; d = .60) and had a successful career (33% vs. 61%; d = .57), but not in whether their partner was physically attractive to them (40% vs. 42%; d = .03). Wealthier men and people with better appearance satisfaction had stronger preferences for good looking and slender partners. Preferences varied within and between genders, and were linked to bargaining hand in the mating market."
Of course all these facts doesn't stop people bashing Tucker Carlson for saying men earning less money leads to social problems. So much for reality having a known liberal bias

Restaurant Review: The Candy Shop, Newmarket - "This restaurant is called The Candy Shop. Don’t do what we did and mistakenly type “The Candy Club” into your Uber app or you’ll find yourself on the way not to an upmarket all-day eatery in Newmarket, but to a downmarket all-day brothel in New Lynn."

Paul Joseph Watson on Twitter - "The Young Turks claimed that President Trump deliberately ignored the tragic murder of a 7-year-old girl because the shooter was white.
They posted 4 videos pushing the 'white racist hate crime' narrative.
Turns out the shooter was black.
Young Turks deleted all their videos"

Garbage Human - Posts - "@shaunking: "URGENT. ALL HANDS ON DECK.
A 40 y/o white man w/ a beard in a red pickup truck pulled up on 7 y/o Jazmine Barnes and her family near a Houston @Walmart and shot and killed her and injured others.
I am joining the search for her killer and have a $25,000 reward.
Need him NOW."
@ABC: "NEW: Harris County Sheriff's Office releases mugshot of 20-ear-old Eric Black Jr., charged with capital murder in the shooting 7-year-old Jazmine Barnes in Houston last week."
@tspicchiali: "This didn't age well did it Talcum X?"
@shaunking: "After Woodruff & Black shot & killed Jazmine Barnes, 4 credible independent eyewitnesses heard the shooting and saw a white man in a red truck speed off.
It appears that man was an innocent bystander who fled, actually fearing for his life as well. He was not the shooter."
@23Skidoo7: "We'll all wait right here while you organize a press conference to apologize for stirring up more phony racial hatred. ""

Professor's contract with students: 'Drop the class immediately if you are triggered by free speech - "A professor has taken a novel approach when it comes to dealing with the increasing number of students railing against and even shutting down academic ideas they don't agree with: a contract. James "Duke" Pesta, an associate professor of English at the University of Wisconsin Oshkosh, presents a two-page contract to his students on the first day of class that asks them to drop the course if they are "triggered" or offended by certain ideas or beliefs.
“In this course, we study literature from cultures that existed before you were born. Their world is not our world. Their beliefs may not be our beliefs. No one asks you to believe or endorse any premise, attitude, precept, theology, political system, or ideology contained in these books or expressed in class. Nor will you ever lose points or be docked grades because of your opinion (written, oral, or otherwise)”... “We will not malign or trivialize these texts because they do not always parrot our values. We will not assume these books are racist, sexist, or homophobic because of the period in which they were written, or because of the race, class, gender, or religion of the authors,” the contract also says, the outlet reported. “People who approach alien cultures with such preconceived notions are bigots masquerading as critically sophisticated advocates, often in the name of ‘social justice.’ Persons who so diminish the past are neither social nor just, especially when they compel students to adopt their biases.”... “Students are now keenly aware that they can put professors through an intrusive investigatory process just by complaining, even without any corroborating evidence. I have even had department heads who allow students to substitute required classes for other courses just because students complain about what they have ‘heard’ a professor’s classes are like,” Pesta added to the outlet. “My contract is an attempt to make it harder for these kangaroo court investigations to be launched in the first place.”... he finds trigger warnings — which inform students in advance that subject matter might offend them — “appalling from an educational standpoint.”“But I have come to realize that they may have more utility for professors than students,” he added to the outlet. “It’s one more way to try and indemnify yourself from malicious and unfounded complaints by driving away at the outset students who only want their own preconceived ideas validated.”"

Opaque policies, fixation with KPIs, rankings: Why arts and humanities academics quit NUS, NTU - "The National University of Singapore (NUS) and Nanyang Technological University (NTU) do well in attracting talented faculty members in the short term but fail to retain them — no thanks to their incessant pursuit of rankings and the relative lack of academic freedom when it comes to certain projects or research initiatives, about 10 academics — who have either recently left or are leaving the two universities — told TODAY. Such turnover of staff, some of whom had wanted more teaching opportunities but were under pressure for research output, will ultimately have a negative impact on students... Noting how the higher-ups at the universities often overrule recommendations made by specialist panels, he said: “While no tenure and promotion procedure is perfect, the level of internal distrust at NUS is astonishingly high. As a result, erratic and unpredictable decisions get made.”... A former member of NUS' Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences said it was challenging to research on systemic social issues in Singapore because the work was "under scrutiny"... Other observers have also called for the universities to support Singapore-specific research"

Today article on academics quitting NUS & NTU taken down due to ‘legal challenge’

Academics stand by comments on NUS, NTU in Today article - "Five academics who were cited in a Today article that was subsequently taken down issued a public statement on Saturday (19 January) to say that they stand by their comments published in the piece... The professors also noted that they were unaware of other incidents in which media reporting of faculty opinions have been subject to such a reaction from a university."

Quebec's failed child-care model | IEDM - "One of the few extensive studies on the quality of Quebec child-care facilities reported in 2005 that 61% had an overall quality rated as minimal (with scores of 3 to 4.9 out of 7), while 12% were rated as inadequate and 27% as good. Government subsidy and regulation, clearly, does not ensure high quality. As might be expected, the minimal payment required from parents - currently set at just $7 per child, per day of care - has produced a sharp rise in demand both by new users (for example, mothers who recently entered the workforce, or who stayed home but have put their children into outside care anyway because it is now so affordable) and by parents who had previously used other forms of child care. From the beginning, the predictable result has been that demand exceeds supply: Tens of thousands of children are on waiting lists. The affected parents have either put off entering the workforce or are using more expensive forms of child care. Even for those lucky enough to get in, $7-a-day child care does not benefit all parents equally. Calculations by experts show that families with relatively high incomes (over $60,000) benefit most from the system. Not surprisingly, they also make the greatest use of it. In 2000, more than 58% of children in subsidized child-care centres came from families with incomes above $60,000, although they represented a minority of children aged zero to four in Quebec.Meanwhile, those with incomes between $25,000 and $40,000 are actually worse off financially than they would be using nonsubsidized child care at, say, $26 per day, given the overall effect of the government's program on their taxable incomes. So much for universality and accessibility."
Related: Quebec gave all parents cheap day care — and their kids were worse off as a result

Rationally Speaking | Official Podcast of New York City Skeptics - Current Episodes - Rationally Speaking #220 - Peter Eckersley on "Tough choices on privacy and artificial intelligence" - "I'd say one thing that Apple really doesn't do right is iCloud backups, which contain almost everything on your IOS devices. Those are totally readable by Apple and disclosed to government in response to law enforcement or surveillance requests. So all of the FBI drama about getting into a San Bernardino iPhone was kind of theater because the FBI had full access to the very recent backups of everything on that phone... they wanted a legal precedent that said they could compel Apple in the future...
The classifieds in your newspaper all disappeared and went to Craigslist or a local competitor — but in response to that, the newspapers, especially in Spain said, "We want to be able to control what Google shows in Google News."... Europe focused all this regulatory energy on, "How can we control what Google News displays from a Spanish newspaper?" They managed to get Google News shut down in Spain by trying to extract revenue there. Article 13 I think is trying to generalize this terrible theory of how European media outlets can claw back some revenue from Google. I think there are a lot of other ways of approaching that question that could be more constructive. Maybe we do need to turn to the tech companies and say, "How are you going to fund a healthy media landscape?" It should be not tied to specific absurd copyright claims...
There's no evidence that the patenting process actually causes invention. In software it seems that people invent things in order to accomplish goals, almost always."

Rationally Speaking | Official Podcast of New York City Skeptics - Current Episodes - RS 219 - Jason Collins on "A skeptical take on behavioral economics" - "'Recently had someone talking about status quo bias and action bias. So, I don't think action bias is actually on the Wikipedia page, but it gets talked about a lot, this urge that people feel the need to take action.But of course then you've got a status quo bias, which is people want to stick to the status quo. Well, which is which? In what environments are they active - is one of them active in some contexts and the other in other contexts? Or in the end, have we just simply got two results and labeled each of the two results as opposite effects?'
'It's like having two opposing idioms that together encompass the whole space, like “opposites attract” and then “birds of a feather flock together.” And you can pull out whichever one, to explain whatever you see.'
'Indeed, indeed. You see a poor decision from a CEO, and if they chose to do something, well, they were over confident - but if they didn't make the call they should have, they were loss averse... There's sort of a bias for every situation'...
'Economists and behavioral economists are just really reluctant to let go of this rational, expected utility model of humans. The way that most of the approaches and the behavioral economics for that, theoretically go, "Okay, what can we do?"They end up in this world, where they effectively assume that inside we actually have this rational person, who has the full set of preferences against all their choices. It's almost a psychological little shell around it that has lack of attention, lack of computational power, lack of will power, that leads to those inner preferences not being realized. A lot of the nudging is almost framed as an attempt to allow people to realize those inner preferences.Bob Sugden’s critique of this is really around the idea that basically these latent preferences don't exist. There is no internal, rational agent that's coming up with them.'"
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