Monday, August 20, 2012

You Can't Deny Science

And the science says, liberals dominate the social sciences...

In news that could only surprise a liberal, the social sciences are not hotbeds of intellectual diversity, and don't want to be (H/T:  Cold Fury):
Psychologists Yoel Inbar and Joris Lammers, based at Tilburg University in the Netherlands, surveyed a roughly representative sample of academics and scholars in social psychology and found that “In decisions ranging from paper reviews to hiring, many social and personality psychologists admit that they would discriminate against openly conservative colleagues.”
This finding surprised the researchers. The survey questions “were so blatant that I thought we’d get a much lower rate of agreement,” Mr. Inbar said. “Usually you have to be pretty tricky to get people to say they’d discriminate against minorities.”
One question, according to the researchers, “asked whether, in choosing between two equally qualified job candidates for one job opening, they would be inclined to vote for the more liberal candidate (i.e., over the conservative).”
More than a third of the respondents said they would discriminate against the conservative candidate. One respondent wrote in that if department members “could figure out who was a conservative, they would be sure not to hire them.”
This is nothing other than typical liberal contempt for dissenting views.  It's a clear illustration of the fact that liberals will suppress dissent by any means at their disposal whenever they have the power to do so.
In 2011, Mr. Haidt addressed this very issue at a meeting of the Society for Personality and Social Psychology — the same group that Mr. Inbar and Mr. Lammer surveyed. Mr. Haidt’s talk, “The Bright Future of Post-Partisan Social Psychology,” caused a stir. The professor, whose new book “The Righteous Mind” examines the moral roots of our political positions, asked the nearly 1,000 academics and students in the room to raise their hands if they were liberals. Nearly 80 percent of the hands went up. When he asked whether there were any conservatives in the house, just three hands — 0.3 percent — went up.
This is “a statistically impossible lack of diversity,” Mr. Haidt said.
"Statistically impossible" -- that means it couldn't have happened by accident.
Helen Slater as Supergirl
Beyond their findings on discrimination, the pair determined that while conservatives are minorities in their field, they are not statistically negligible: About 40 percent of respondents identified themselves as moderate or conservative on economic issues, while 30 percent did so on foreign policy issues. The widest divide occurs on social issues, the contested terrain in the culture wars shaking the academy. On these contentious issues, 90 percent identified as liberal and only 4 percent as conservative.
“As offensive as it may seem to many social psychologists,” Mr. Inbar and Mr. Lammers write, “believing that abortion is murder does not mean that one cannot do excellent research.” To think otherwise, they argue, damages the scientific credibility of psychology — a field that has been criticized in the press for being a pseudo-science.
Remember this when you hear about what psychologists say about any, and I mean any, subject.  You'd heard of media bias.  Now you know know about academic bias.