Vox and the guys are having a civil discussion about the roots of intelligence. It seems there is a genetic component. DUH.
I personally think of the desktop computer as a really good metaphor for how human intelligence works.
There is the Central processor (CPU). A faster, better designed chip with lots and lots of FLOPS will do better than a clunky old 8086 chip. It’s born that way.
Then there is memory, both hard drive space and RAM. The capacity of each of these are again, born that way, suggesting genetic components. These things can be damaged through improper handling. You can throw in various metaphors for Cache memory too.
Then there is the software. Starting with the BIOS that lets the CPU communicate with input Outputs like the eyes, ears, mouth, and fingers. Then on top of that is the OS that builds in some basic functionality like ability to use language. Than you have the applications. These are the memories and learning that a person experiences (loads and installs) that allow him to make use of data in complex though processes. Among them are the ability to manipulate language and numbers, then at higher levels, literacy and math. Then a knowledge of history, philosophy, music, Arts, engineering, medicine, etc.
Weaknesses in any of those things holds back the entire measurable intelligence experience of the person. Thus, a brand new smoking hot gaming platform, loaded with DOS 4.0 is going no where. Load it with Windows 7 and then never put any applications into it and it is still good for nothing but watching Oprah.
Similarly, I suspect that there are a few tens of thousands of genius-level people born into the Black community whose minds never get good quality applications loaded, and thus will be indistinguishable from mentally retarded people.
And the corollary is that no matter how much education you give them, the guys with the 8086 chips and no math co-processor, are never going to be able to run that calculus program. The Black community is particularly held back because they promote their underachievers. So they don’t put any effort into identifying potential i5 and i7 quad core processors and investing in some good software for them. In fact, most of the Black community would reject good software as being too “white”. And any attempt by the White community to “help” the black community would be seen as racist. so there is no point helping. And let’s be very frank here. It would be tremendously beneficial for society and the black community to separate the junk from the potential performers. Then transfer resources away from the junk and into the ones with potential. The junk machines are never going to benefit from the education you give them. After 12 years of public education, they are still going to be illiterate, uncommunicative, unable to think, and unable to build or contribute to society. But those with potential, being granted the education that is now withheld from them, do have the potential to not only live better lives for themselves, but also make serious contributions to the larger society.