Daily Data Dump (Monday)

By Razib Khan | May 10, 2010 2:53 pm

Quiz: Who’s that celebrity mom? I got a 7 out of 10. I only knew one of the answers for a fact, but the resemblance was obvious in many cases (compare Reese Witherspoon’s mom’s jaw line to Reese).

The Moral Life of Babies. It’s complicated. And contra Freud babies aren’t necessarily perverts.

College Inc., a documentary about the for-profit diploma mills. As I’ve noted before, these institutions of higher education seem geared toward capturing federal dollars through grants and student loans by duping the less intelligent segments of the population into thinking that they can get a college degree. Many conservatives assume that the market can work miracles and produce firms which can educate the uneducable. Demand must be met by supply. Many liberals believe that everyone should have a college education and that everyone has the capability. The real problem is in secondary school.

E.U. Details $957 Billion Rescue Package. Europeans trying to prevent Götterdämmerung.

African population structure and Neandertal population mixture. A reply to those who argue that the 1-4% in Eurasians which is not in African is actually ancient (or present) African substructure.

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  • http://scienceblogs.com/thoughtfulanimal Jason

    I also got 7/10. Which ones did you miss?

  • http://blogs.discovermagazine.com/gnxp Razib Khan

    brad pitt’s mom, sean comb’s mom, and jennifer lopez’s mom. the only one i knew before hand was gwyneth paltrow’s mom.

  • James

    7 out of 10? Haha, I don’t even know who half of these “celebrities” are! Ellen Pompeo?

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  • dan

    9/10 baby! i thought miley’s mom was paris’. i’m not sure if 9/10 is something to be proud of, though. i saw the Frontline, too. good to see Phoenix U et al is a clear scam but what about regular universities? I’ve always considered my PSY degree to be a scam. nobody told me it’s worthless when i enrolled…and that psychology is basically a cult. there needs to be some accountability as far as workplace placement. someone needs to open more schools that will give you your money back if you can’t get a job or works with actual businesses that will place you in an internship. i can guarantee you major universities LOVE any english, philosophy, classics, etc. majors even if the degree is a total scam. they don’t use one single facility but their tuition goes for another practice football field and a private gym for the basketball team. scam scam scam….speaking of scams:
    Goldman had a zero loss quarter for trades…hmmm…..i’m feeling owned….

  • http://blogs.discovermagazine.com/gnxp Razib Khan

    7 out of 10? Haha, I don’t even know who half of these “celebrities” are! Ellen Pompeo?

    well, as i said, i only knew the mother of one. in my defense.

  • Sandgroper

    At least part of the answer to the worthless degree problem is accreditation by professional qualifying bodies, where they exist. A similar thing is happening in Asia, where some Australian and European universities are offering online degrees in fields like engineering with no hands on practical component, which is really worrying (not that nursing is not worrying).

    Engineering degree accreditation is done in the USA, I know some of the people involved and they are serious and competent, so I presume this is not so much of a problem in engineering. I don’t know if there are degree accreditation bodies in the USA in fields other than engineering, but I assume there must be for at least some of them – medicine, surely, and I would have thought there must be for nursing also.

    Any student who signs up for an expensive program without simply checking with a relevant qualifying body on whether it is accredited is doing him/herself a big disservice.

  • MW

    African population substructure and Neandertal: He’s implicitly assuming all 100kb sequences have the same substitution rate. (Although I suspect he’s right.)

    Celebrity moms: I got 3/10. Mostly I just went with the one celebrity out of four who I’d actually heard of. Only in the first one could I pick any family resemblance (which I got right.)

  • Sandgroper

    I was 4/10, but only because Zeeb gave the answer for Witherspoon.

  • JohnV

    I totally assumed Owen Wilson’s nose looked like that because he got hit in the face with a baseball bat or something and never got it fixed. Who knew?

  • pconroy

    I got 9/10, I missed the Paltrow one – as the mother’s eyes are too far apart I thought.

    I didn’t know 1 or 2 of each of the selections – which may have made it easier?

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  • DavidB

    8/10, and for 1 that I got wrong I hadn’t a clue who the ‘celebrities’ were.

    BTW, is Beyonce’s mother white, or is she (in US terms) black, or what?


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About Razib Khan

I have degrees in biology and biochemistry, a passion for genetics, history, and philosophy, and shrimp is my favorite food. In relation to nationality I'm a American Northwesterner, in politics I'm a reactionary, and as for religion I have none (I'm an atheist). If you want to know more, see the links at http://www.razib.com


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