Elsewhere (242)
The Legends Were True

And Lo, There Came A Great Bunching Of The Panties

“Everyone is allowed to share their opinion. I just hope he gets fired for it.”

Regarding the ongoing ‘Google memo’ saga, I thought I’d lift the following from yesterday’s comments:

To recap. A Google software developer with a PhD in biology writes a polite, conciliatory and politically centrist memo suggesting that there’s a leftist groupthink problem in the company that inhibits open discussion; that men and women on average have differing preferences and abilities, albeit with a large overlap, and so “diversity” policies might benefit from bearing that in mind; and that perhaps people should be treated as individuals rather than as mascots of allegedly oppressed identity groups.

This is immediately met with ludicrous and wilful mischaracterisation by “social justice” Twitter and the ‘progressive’ media, including deliberately deleting the memo’s links to supporting data; a general refusal to engage honestly with the author’s points, or in many cases even to read them; baseless accusations of every ‘ism’ going; personal doxxing; boasts of blacklisting; and demands that the author of the memo be fired for his heresy and never employed again. On grounds that his arguments are “violently offensive” and in need of being “silenced.” He is, you see, “committing violence” with his statistics. All of which rather proves the author’s point about leftist groupthink and its reliance on distortion, intimidation and outright hysteria.

The employee in question has of course now been fired. Readers who wish to be violently offended can read the memo here.


Jordan Peterson interviews James Damore, author of the supposedly scandalous and “fascist” memo. Skip forward to 5’10:

“The thing that was disturbing to me about watching the response to you is that, so far as I can tell, there isn’t anything that you said… that violates the scientific literature as it currently stands.”

Update 2, via the comments: 

Within the field of neuroscience, sex differences between women and men — when it comes to brain structure and function and associated differences in personality and occupational preferences — are understood to be true, because the evidence for them (thousands of studies) is strong. This is not information that’s considered controversial.

Dr Debra Soh, here.

Update 3:

Allum Bokhari interviews a (pseudonymous) Google employee: 

Several managers have openly admitted to keeping blacklists of the employees in question, and preventing them from seeking work at other companies. There have been numerous cases in which social justice activists coordinated attempts to sabotage other employees’ performance reviews for expressing a different opinion. These have been raised to the Senior VP level, with no action taken whatsoever… For conservative employees, this is obviously demoralising, but it is also dangerous.

Update 4:

The Quillette website, which published some strong support of Mr Damore’s memo, is currently experiencing a DDoS attack. A coincidence, no doubt.

Update 5:

When Black Lives Matter hysteria hit its peak, sometime in 2015, it became taboo to criticise identity politics, and later on, it became very dangerous to criticise any member of a minority group at all (even if the criticism had nothing to do with their identity).

Allum Bokhari talks with more (pseudonymous) Google employees.

Update 6:

A compendium of gender research by Sean Stevens and Jonathan Haidt at Heterodox Academy:

Damore is correct that there are “population level differences in distributions” of traits that are likely to be relevant for understanding gender gaps at Google. Even if we set aside all questions about the origins of these differences, the fact remains that there are gender differences in a variety of traits, and especially in interest/enjoyment (rather than ability) in the adult population from which Google and all other tech firms recruit.… Damore was drawing attention to empirical findings that seem to have been previously unknown or ignored at Google.

Unknown or ignored. By our self-imagined betters.

Update 7:

And for those with a taste for irony, here’s video of a talk by Michael Gurian, titled Leadership and the Sexesgiven at Google HQ nine years ago. Curiously, the topic of psychological and neurological gender differences was, not too long ago, deemed suitable for discussion by Google management and employees, and indeed advantageous. During the talk, none of the ladies present seem particularly outraged, or oppressed, or in need of a fainting couch.

Update 8

A Primer On Statistics to Help Quell Your Outrage at the Google Memo.