Lion of the Blogosphere

Having high math ability doesn’t translate into having high income

At Steve Hsu’s blog, he presents data from a longitudinal study that shows that people identified at the age of 13 as being in the top 1% of math ability are only slightly more likely than any random person of having income in the top 5% 25 years later. Thus 90% of the most gifted math students are in the bottom 95%.

He then posts another series of graphs showing that extraversion has the biggest impact on income and conscientiousness after that. IQ is tied for third place with being less open and less agreeable. IQ shows itself as only a minor factor among many in determining income.

The evidence here is that unless people with top 1% math ability can use that to get a prestigious degree which can then enable them to get hired into a prestigious career track, they won’t make much more money than any average person, and will probably make less than someone with average intelligence but who is extraverted and mean. Although people with high math ability create more value, their value is transferred to extraverted and agressive people who get paid more money as salesmen or as higher-level management.

Steve Hsu, an advocate for the importance of IQ, admits in a comment that “Apparently, income returns to IQ are smaller than one might guess.” He then tries to explain that smart people have more important concerns than money, but that sounds pretty bogus to me. The real explanation is that corporations don’t reward their smartest employees.

Also, as I’ve previously pointed out, most of the income benefits of above-average IQ come from merely being smart enough to graduate from college. IQ in excess of that is not financially rewarded.

Hsu’s charts are also consistent with my previous findings that people with lower SAT scores at prestigious colleges had higher incomes than people with higher SAT scores at the some colleges. (This nugget is hidden in the Dale Krueger paper.) People with lower SAT scores at the same college probably have higher conscientiousness and higher extraversion because they made up for their low SAT scores with higher grades and more impressive extracurricular activities (which would be correlated with extraversion), and Hsu’s charts show that conscientiousness and extraversion are more important for earning income than IQ.

Written by Lion of the Blogosphere

May 14, 2014 at 7:13 AM

Posted in Biology, Labor Markets

233 Responses

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  1. Steve Hsu looks like he could be on a billboard in Full Metal Jacket.

    ScarletNumber

    May 14, 2014 at 7:31 AM

  2. Eh, I don’t know. Perhaps people with high math skills but low extraversion know that they will always be nerds and end up not being motivated to work too hard. Or maybe extraversion is a proxy for confidence, which is valuable in all kinds of different ways. There’s no reason to assume that those with math skills deserve the most money. Steve Jobs didn’t have as good math skills as many of his engineers, but they were replaceable while he was not.

    Hepp

    May 14, 2014 at 7:59 AM

    • Without Steve Jobs, the “Nokia nSlate CT-40” is the top-selling tablet of 2014.

      Without the engineer, Steve Jobs is America’s top seller of Snake Oil Liniment.

      Fiddlesticks

      May 14, 2014 at 9:20 AM

      • Well, at least Steve Jobs admitted 10 years ago, that he might be gone or his company will run out of ideas and fold, because technology is always evolving. Lawyers and Wall St guys will always be around like parasites.

        Despite the nerds producing for Jobs where he gets all the credit, he at least was able to push products that have immediate relevancy to society. Trying convincing the average Joe on the street, that without Wall St, he wouldn’t be able to eat.

        JS

        May 14, 2014 at 9:50 PM

    • Perhaps people with high math skills but low extraversion know that they will always be nerds and end up not being motivated to work too hard.

      Actually they are comforted by well-meaning family members and education majors that, sure, they’re being battered by those immature meanies in middle/high school, but everything changes in college and the work world, so keep taking that Blue Pill ’cause it’s totally gonna kick in any day now!

      If nerds weren’t working hard, the value transferees wouldn’t have any deliverables to seize credit for, and the PC shakedown crew wouldn’t be flocking to Silicon Valley.

      Fiddlesticks

      May 14, 2014 at 9:34 AM

      • These counter-factuals are cold comfort in the real world. Engineers are as dime-a-dozen as good salesmen because you are not going to wake up one day and not find any engineers. A “world without engineers” is simply not a real world alternative.

        Adding a Steve Jobs to the pool of good salesmen resulted in the consumer-friendly iphone/ipad market. Why didn’t the addition of a good engineer create the iphone/ipad? Why was Jobs the catalyst and not the designers with the education and math skills?

        Engineers tend to forget that they are marketing products to people who don’t care about engineering. The technicals are neither interesting nor informative to most people so they are never going to be selling points. Engineers seem to have the attitude that they should be paid because some craft they engage in is demonstrably difficult, instead of being paid because they built something useful to a member of the public. They think fancy puzzle-solving should be its own reward, as if beating the land-speed record for Rubiks Cube solutions is a remunerative career path.

        And the above is just for the great, top-notch engineers, the Steve Wozniaks of the world. Most engineers are mediocre, like most people. Mediocre engineers re-hash existing technology discovered decades ago.

        And, no, nothing changes after high school. High School is the beginning of adulthood. Well-meaning “cluelesses” damaged a whole generation of kids the same way “Old Economy Steve” does. They were told lies about the real word, made bets on those lies…and lost.

        Steve Wozniak were certainly still be an engineer without Steve Jobs. He just wouldn’t be a billionaire.

        map

        May 14, 2014 at 4:19 PM

      • Yes, you need IQ for the creation of wealth/civilization. But great things are also done because charismatic/confident individuals are able to organize diverse groups of people together and lead them towards a goal. Jobs himself was more instrumental in building Pixar and Apple than was any particular engineer. The nerds were replaceable, but Jobs wasn’t.

        Hepp

        May 14, 2014 at 5:18 PM

      • map, you’re perpetuating the engineers-aren’t-creative stereotype by oversimplifying the situation. Engineers operate under directives and constraints from MBA types. Research and innovation take money. Once Jobs made user-friendliness a priority and allocated funds, it was the engineers’ ability/creativity that actually put the broadly defined goal into practice.

        Jobs didn’t conceive any of the actual tech (the authentic creativity). And the engineers themselves weren’t the initial roadblock w/in the organization.

        anon

        May 14, 2014 at 10:23 PM

      • anon@May 14, 2014 at 10:23 pm,

        You’re mistaken. It has nothing to do with a lack of creativity of engineers. It’s the fact that engineering is limited by physics.

        Engineering is not graphic design. Creativity never factors in because a truly creative solution would result in a breakthrough in physics. Instead, engineering is an optimization problem, where variables are emphasized or de-emphasized under constraint because compromises have to be made in design in order to achieve an objective. Choosing what those compromises are going to be is like herding cats because it means someone’s project is going to be made subordinate to someone else’s project. The result is constant squabbling about why the objectives can’t be achieved without including the technical solutions that their particular project group happens to be working on. This is on top of the “Nick Burns, Company Computer Guy” mentality that engineers seem to have, where they substitute the consumers understanding of the product with their own.

        I work in computer forensics so my job is to tease user-created data from the mass of system data available on a drive. While, for example, Windows XP Professional has 78,000 files in its base install, and Windows 7 Ultimate has about 160,000 files, Apple OSX has 384,000 files. While Windows uses a consistent little endian read of all of its data, Apple OSX combines big endian with little endian. While Windows uses NTFS, Apple uses a B-Tree. B-trees are complex file systems that balance information. The result is fast reads but slow writes as the file system needs overhead to execute the b-tree correctly…otherwise files would not be retrieved.

        Oh…and don’t get me started on “jail broken” iphones. Guess what this is…a buffer overflow attack. Yep, the number one electronic device on the planet has a memory handling error. DoD won’t even allow iphones on their networks unless all the features that make an iphone are turned off.

        Apple’s bloatware alone requires tight integration with its hardware, even though it’s using commodified Intel chips.

        I am not trying to rag on engineers. An engineer-driven operating system is Linux. Ubuntu is elegant, with a footprint at base install smaller than Windows XP; a wonderfully intuitive Inode file system; consistent Big Endian reading and, most of all, everything is in plain text. An unencrypted linux box is just indexed and keyword searched.

        Yet, look at the operator overhead needed to make a Linux system sit up and beg. Such a product will never have widespread appeal, even though, from a technical perspective, it is very efficient.

        No, an Apple product is combining off-the-shelf technology with incredible organizational dexterity, an organizational dexterity that is unique to Jobs’ genius. That’s why Apple under Jobs’ leadership built the iPhone while Apple under Tim Cook’s leadership is buying Beats.

        And it’s not an accident that Job’s passed away in the same week as the inventor of Unix and C++.

        map

        May 15, 2014 at 1:05 AM

      • map, thank you for the insight. It’s easy for a blogger to say “oh these people are the value creators and these people are not,” but we have no clue what’s going on in an industry from the outside.

        You lost me though when you said “it’s not an accident that Job’s passed away in the same week as the inventor of Unix and C++.” huh?

        Hepp

        May 15, 2014 at 12:37 PM

      • Hepp,

        Eh, I was trying to be artful. God called two giants back to Heaven.

        map

        May 15, 2014 at 1:58 PM

      • Oh, ok, I read it as a conspiracy theory, especially after that Pentagon stuff.

        Hepp

        May 16, 2014 at 10:39 AM

  3. If I was a high-school guidance counselor or teacher, I would make Lion required reading for all of my students.

    If you have children above the age of 12, you should make them read the lion as well.

    uatu

    May 14, 2014 at 8:09 AM

    • Kids should start on Lion a little earlier. Lion, please consider starting a second blog aimed at preteens.

      Robert

      May 14, 2014 at 12:38 PM

      • How about a blog for NAMs? Or better yet, a blog for proles!

        E. Rekshun

        May 14, 2014 at 5:22 PM

  4. Of course the social minds would work together socially to maximize their collective uptake of the value produced in any organization, while quietly making fun of the nerdy math guys. As a person with higher percentile scores in my verbal than my math I’ve found that it’s my math that gets me in the door but my verbal that moves me up within the organization. In my experience understanding what your boss needs from you to feel good feelings about you is more important than figuring out the toughest problems, at least in a corporate environment. Mileage may vary in say a physics dept.

    Sisyphean

    May 14, 2014 at 8:37 AM

    • …understanding what your boss needs from you to feel good feelings about you is more important than figuring out the toughest problems, at least in a corporate environment.

      Bingo!

      E. Rekshun

      May 14, 2014 at 5:24 PM

      • This means making your boss look good in front if his managers.

        map

        May 15, 2014 at 1:10 AM

  5. IQ in some ways is a min-bar. Really stupid people aren’t likely to get rich, other than through a talent like sports or being a rock star or acting, and for some people just for being really good looking. Even among athletes, it seems the savvier ones are better at maximizing their earnings versus the total dopes.

    But among average to above average people, extroversion, aggression, meanness are all going to be extremely helpful in one of the biggest ways to make money: selling. Whether you are the Wolf of Wall Street (talk about extroversion and aggression in that guy), a real estate mogul, or a guy with a string of industrial laundromats, any business where the main thing you’re selling is really yourself will be driven by qualities other than IQ. Think of newly famous billionaire Donald Sterling. Was he ever a really bright guy in the IQ sense? Doubt it. But I suspect he’s ruthless enough to happily cut your throat if that would help him close a deal.

    As for math, probably the best opportunity for making a lot of money (not billionaire money, but good money) is by being a quant at a hedge fund, but there’s only so many of those jobs to go around. And even there, when you make a billion dollars on some trade that came out of some algorithm you came up with, the execs are going to take the bulk of that money.

    But in the end, most people are perfectly content to NOT be super rich as long as they can have the things they want, whether that’s a McMansion in the burbs or a nice apartment in Williamsburg (or a small house in Wichita, for that matter), wife and kids, or no wife and serial girlfriends. Whatever. The main thing about money is not being buried in debt, which is psychologically very wasting.

    peterike

    May 14, 2014 at 9:38 AM

    • After watching Wolf of Wall Street, I googled Jordan Belfort and watched a few videos of him online. It’s worth the time just to see the extreme version of the charismatic salesman personality. The guy is a total sleazeball…and you can absolutely picture him doing the things he did in that story.

      SJ

      May 14, 2014 at 4:15 PM

  6. A bully with high levels of conscientiousness is a dangerous thing indeed. However I’d say your garden-variety bully uses his aggression to AVOID having to be conscientious.

    You have to be a PhD-level bully to make your conscientiousness not come across as subservience/major DLV.

    Fiddlesticks

    May 14, 2014 at 9:49 AM

    • great comment. Being a conscientious beta/shlub has little to no benefit. Gotta get dat credentials and skillz.

      fakeemail

      May 15, 2014 at 1:07 PM

  7. Steve Hsu is basically describing his fellow Asians in a technical nutshell.

    JS

    May 14, 2014 at 10:31 AM

    • There are plenty of 100k-200k jobs available for the average to above average iq asian folks. Nothing wrong in getting a piece of that. Not every one is gonna own an apt in Manhattan or drive a Ferrari.

      wt

      May 14, 2014 at 1:08 PM

      • Given the fact that Asians are overrepresented in STEM, they appear not to see an ROI in their education, when compared to capable NAMs and White women who work in sales that pay six figures, yet they didn’t invest in countless hours of grinding and a degree from a prestigious school.

        JS

        May 14, 2014 at 5:19 PM

  8. Ivy League grads with lower SAT scores make more money because they are fraternity jocks who go into finance, not because they have greater “conscientiousness”. Let’s call a spade a spade here, shall we?

    Saskatoon Sammy

    May 14, 2014 at 10:39 AM

    • Well to be fair, they put in a lot of work at practicing for sports and then a lot of hours at the investment bank, so there is a lot of conscientiousness there.

      But they are putting in a lot of work at activities that create no real value (sports and then moving money around) rather than acquiring knowledge and creating useful things.

      • This goes to show you that the Ivy Leagues are nothing but vocational schools and their intellectual value is close to nil, given the fact that many upper middle class folks aren’t all that different from their prole brethren in behavior (with an over concern for money and not the gentlemanly grooming of the past), which stereotypes the obnoxious greedy American throughout the world.

        JS

        May 14, 2014 at 1:45 PM

  9. We need data where poor high IQ academics have left their poor lives behind and purposely chased wealth. I assume Hsu is speaking from experience in academia. He’s probably familiar with some brilliant people who have chosen a path of unimpressive wages, to pursue answering interesting questions. That’s probably his perspective.

    Taylor

    May 14, 2014 at 11:13 AM

    • While there probably are some people like that in academia, they are a very tiny number of outliers that don’t speak for the 3 million Americans in the top 1% of math ability.

      • I’m sure there are plenty of people who go into academia because they genuinely love and care about their field more than money, but in my experience, the majority of tenure-chasing academics are a sycophantic breed of perpetual children preening for base personal approval.

        Ryan_Clark

        May 14, 2014 at 12:41 PM

      • In other words, academics are obsessed with status just like everyone else, except to them status is defined not by a million dollar salary, but by other stuff.

      • I have no idea about IQ of a particular person, and I do not know his salary.
        He got College Board’s A for Calculus AP1 in 9th grade,
        College Board’s A for Calculus AP2 in 10th grade,
        and now at the age 32.5 years
        he is Tenured (Associate) Professor of EECS at MIT.

        immigrant from former USSR

        May 14, 2014 at 2:08 PM

      • In other words, academics are obsessed with status just like everyone else, except to them status is defined not by a million dollar salary, but by other stuff.

        Yes, it’s true, but their status definition seems psychologically healthier and more progressive. Professors feel good when they get their work published in a field that they really love. They especially feel good, when they propagate their research to an audience who are eager to listen to them.

        Most employees in the real world don’t really like their jobs, but the money is what keeps them at it. Financiers and BIGLAWYERs remain at their careers for life because they need the money to keep up with a certain lifestyle and family obligations.

        JS

        May 14, 2014 at 5:30 PM

    • “We need data where poor high IQ academics have left their poor lives behind and purposely chased wealth.”

      Here’s a clue: they get really, really rich. The only reason very high IQ people don’t have amazingly high earnings is because they choose not to pursue it. Terrance Tao probably makes somewhere around $200K a year. If he chose tomorrow he could quit his job and make $10 million+ at a hedge fund.

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Renaissance_technologies

      Doug

      May 14, 2014 at 10:21 PM

      • Ah, yes…these miraculous investing results. SAC Capital Management had similar returns…before they were brought down for insider trading.

        map

        May 15, 2014 at 2:00 AM

  10. Using the HEXACO would have been more useful here; or, at the very least, a separate measure of the Dark Tetrad/Triad. Almost certainly a certain degree of psychopathic traits – particularly Machiavellianism – is generally useful for maximizing income. The Honesty-Humility dimension of the HEXACO even specifically measures greed (or orientation towards money, etc.), which would be clearly relevant.

    JayMan

    May 14, 2014 at 11:25 AM

    • Anyone want to comment on this? I wonder if a kind-heart, high H is an impediment for high income in those possessing a high IQ.

      Latias

      May 15, 2014 at 5:14 AM

      • I think it’s an impediment for high income regardless of your IQ.

        SFG

        May 18, 2014 at 7:19 AM

  11. Machiavellianism trumphs Virtue, all day, everyday, at least in the realm of practical affairs.

    Forget Lion. Read Machiavelli. But here’s the kicker, only one person gets to rule. Despite Lion’s implicit attempts to make normative claims out of descriptive ones (Get into an ivy, go IB or Consulting, play sports, don’t go to a crap law school etc.,) The vast majority will never achieve such heights and the ones who do already understand how the system works. Few winners, many losers, that’s life.

    Kant

    May 14, 2014 at 12:31 PM

    • “Few winners, many losers, that’s life.”

      Indeed. Which is why the 1% is, ummm, only 1% of the population.

      peterike

      May 14, 2014 at 12:57 PM

    • In a post scarcity world, what you just said is less relevant. The only serious problem in America is the underachievement of NAMs, and most will be in their current state. Further, America is a culturally stagnant nation. It’s not like there are new trends where only the rich can have all the fun.

      JS

      May 14, 2014 at 1:40 PM

    • Pretty much, which is why I’m for social democracy. 😉 We’re never gonna get their cash, so let’s redistribute it around through taxes.

      SFG

      May 18, 2014 at 7:20 AM

  12. IQ *is* strongly correlated with both income and wealth.

    http://super-economy.blogspot.com/2011/04/iq-income-and-wealth.html

    “In his book “The Social Animal”, reviewed here, David brooks writes:

    “Once you get past some pretty obvious correlations (smart people make better mathematicians), there is a very loose relationship between IQ and life outcomes.”

    Brooks further cites a study claiming that there is “no correlation between accumulating large wealth and high IQ.”

    Both claims are wrong. The result Brooks cites is after “controlling” for education and income. But education and income are themselves functions of I.Q, so you shouldn’t control for them if the question you want to answer is how I.Q effects life outcomes. “

    Dan

    May 14, 2014 at 12:36 PM

    • Here’s another one correlating IQ and wealth (not to mention IQ and the Wealth of Nations).

      Click to access IITE.pdf

      By the way, Lion, I think you are misinterpreting the data. It says that a person who got a 700 on the Math SAT was twice as likely to have a high income than normal. But 700 on the Math SAT is not particularly gifted. I know lots of people who could get 800s on the Math portion at age 13 — and if you are a math wiz, the Math SAT is trivial. A 700 means are you are not a math genius, merely good.

      The curve is such that by extrapolation, the truly gifted math kids must be earning very well today.

      Dan

      May 14, 2014 at 12:56 PM

      • Apparently that’s top 1% for 13 year olds. I believe that.

        Your pdf doesn’t disprove my statement that low IQ predicts poverty a lot better than high IQ predicts wealth.

      • and who takes the sat when they’re 13?

        i think kids were identified by scores on tests like the CAT or other yearly achievement tests. then they were given the sat-m to segregate them further.

        jorge videla

        May 15, 2014 at 12:08 AM

      • I took the SAT in 7th grade, saw a poster near the office at my middle school that advertised it (this was a similar program run by Johns-Hopkins). This was quite a while ago, but I believe you needed a standardized achievement score above some level (95th or 99th percentile, IIRC) to qualify. I ended up getting an 1100 or so, which was high enough to earn some award and get invited to uber-nerd camp (didn’t go, but later research has shown it would have been a good place to network).

    • On second thought, after reading the source papers, you are right, Lion.

      Apparently 700+ is a 0.01 percentile event for a 13 year old back before the SAT was recentered. So we are indeed looking at the rare gifteds, and you would expect more of these people.

      Dan

      May 14, 2014 at 1:13 PM

      • These folks are much better at earning advanced degrees and getting patents then they are at pulling income.

        Dan

        May 14, 2014 at 1:16 PM

      • IQ is a very very strong predictor of how easy it is for someone to do the coursework needed for an advanced degree.

        And people with high math scores are more likely to work as engineers who get there names listed on patents, but they don’t make any money from that, they just collect their normal salary and their employer owns the patent.

    • Low IQ predicts poverty much better than high IQ predicts wealth. People are mixing the two together.

      • Yes. My 720 GMAT equates to a 135 IQ (“Genius”) yet, due to a couple of lay offs and blown opportunities, subtle affirmative action, a preference for job security and an aversion to risk, and the “Great Recession,” my salary is exactly what it was in 1999. Nonetheless, I will become a millionaire before age 50.

        E. Rekshun

        May 14, 2014 at 5:35 PM

      • Lion, would it be more accurate to state that low IQ predicts low income much better than high IQ predicts high income?

        E. Rekshun

        May 14, 2014 at 5:42 PM

      • It’s saying the same thing.

      • i scored a 790 on the practice test and a 770 on the real thing, but i never applied to b-school, because i knew i’d be rejected by any school worth the money.

        but this is hilarious:

        i scored in the 6th percentile on the analytic writing. i think i wrote too little.

        whatever. america.

        jorge videla

        May 15, 2014 at 12:06 AM

      • Even if one makes the distinction between “low income” and “poverty”, one can say that a lower IQ is more likely to be in poverty (based on financial status as opposed to use a threshold income) because they exercise less prudence in their finances.

        Latias

        May 15, 2014 at 4:57 AM

      • LotB: It’s saying the same thing.

        Nope. income wealth

        E. Rekshun

        May 15, 2014 at 11:32 AM

      • ^^ income != wealth

        E. Rekshun

        May 15, 2014 at 11:33 AM

      • Income statement vs balance sheet, yeah yeah yeah. High income is required to become wealthy.

      • Income statement vs balance sheet, yeah yeah yeah. High income is required to become wealthy.

        This discussion needs to nail down degrees of wealth and poverty. While math whizzes are arguably underpaid it’s doubtful too many of them pull less than middle income wages ($60-100,000).

        And since when are the smartest 1% math geniuses? Math genius occurs among the 0.01% in IQ. IQ 135-140 is just very smart but probably not brilliant.

        The Undiscovered Jew

        May 15, 2014 at 9:30 PM

      • The income to IQ correlation only breaks down if you look at income over $150,000. Between $30,000 – $150,000 IQ is a strong predictor of future earnings. After a certain minimum threshold, other variables (extraversion, psychopathy, creativity, pure ‘being at the right time and place’ luck) determine extreme wealth.

        The Undiscovered Jew

        May 15, 2014 at 9:34 PM

      • Lion says “High income is required to become wealthy.” ————— And, by this I presume you mean to give the word ‘income’ its plain meaning such that income includes both work related income and passive income. I say this because I believe high IQ people do better at passive income than work related income. In some fields high IQ is nice, but over a certain number I’m not so sure it greatly multiplies income. With passive investments, however, I’d contend that high IQ can make a huge difference. I’m basing this opinion on personal observations not data or research.

        The old saying ‘the rich get richer’ seems to possess some amount of wisdom given my observations. Most imagine such outcomes are solely or mostly the result of networks or contacts or unearned advantages. However, I suspect the rich are passing on both some sort of genetic talent as well as a learned capacity for making good financial decisions.

        Curle

        May 15, 2014 at 11:45 PM

    • Brooks further cites a study claiming that there is “no correlation between accumulating large wealth and high IQ.”

      Both claims are wrong.

      The rich proles in Staten Island with their humongous homes and yachts prove Brooks is correct. Successful Joe Plumber and Joe Electrician who own their businesses have accumulated a lot of money.

      Unless, you’re telling me these guys wasted their brain and should have attended an Ivy League school, where they ultimately become a partner or manager at a prestigious firm, with an upper middle class salary, and if they’re lucky, a seven figure one.

      JS

      May 14, 2014 at 5:03 PM

      • “The rich proles in Staten Island with their humongous homes and yachts”

        It seems this blog doesn’t go more than two days without having a reference to proles in Staten Island. Well, at least they aren’t being called “guidos” this time!

        MaryK

        May 14, 2014 at 9:00 PM

      • Well, at least they aren’t being called “guidos” this time!

        The anti-Italian comments come from a certain segment of the HBDsphere which believes the Ancient Greeks and Romans were Northern Europeans who were later replaced by swarthy impostors who, the argument goes, now occupy Southern Europe.

        The Undiscovered Jew

        May 15, 2014 at 9:38 PM

      • Although he was writing only about Ancient Greeks, the Greek HBD blogger/geneticist Dienekes made the best argument I’ve ever seen against the notion the Hellenes were Nordic. Among his strongest points:

        * Ancient writers rarely portrayed Greek gods as blonde
        * Skeletal reconstructions of ancient Greeks match moderns
        * Artwork shows ordinary Greeks as dark haired

        Racial Type of the Ancient Hellenes

        http://dienekes.awardspace.com/articles/hellenes/

        http://dienekes.110mb.com/articles/hellenes/

        Baker [5] discusses the origin of blondism and says “It is often supposed that blondness is an indication of Nordid ancestry. Taken by itself, it is nothing of the kind.” Hence, it can be safely assumed that the existence of blond individuals in the Classical world does not require an explanation of Northern ancestry, as German anthropologist Hans Guenther [15] and the Nordicist school presumed. This view was shared by Buxton in [3] where he states “In regard to the Achaeans we have shown that there appears to be no good ground for suspecting the presence of Nordics.” F.G. Debets expresses a similar opinion [32] when he states that “In the Bronze Age, we generally find the same types as in the modern population, with different distribution. We cannot speak of miscegenation with the Nordic race.” With regard to the modern Greeks Buxton says [30] “the evidence of blue eyes is certainly insufficient to establish their [Nordics’] presence as a significant element in the population.” Carleton Coon [14] also cautions against ascribing blonde elements in Mediterranean populations to “some invasion of Goths or Scyths, or the miscegenation of Crusaders,” noting that “one of the characteristics of the Mediterranean race is a minority tendency to blondism.” Coon warns that “we cannot be sure that all prehistoric skeletal material which seems Nordic in an osteological sense was associated with blond soft parts” [4]. The same view is echoed by Angel [6] who states with respect to the Nordic-Iranian morphological type that “There is no reason to suppose that the Nordic-Iranian type in Greece was as blond as are Nordics in northern latitudes.” Moreover The Alpine race (prevalent in much of continental Europe) has an even greater occurrence of blondism and frequently gray eyes [2]. W. W. Howells of Harvard University also notes [48] that “Not all ‘Nordics’ are blond, and not all blonds are ‘Nordic,’ by any means.” American anthropologist Earnest Hooton [40] cautions that the existence of occasional blonds in Greek literature “does not justify inflation into pseudo-histories of conquering ‘Nordic’ tribes invading the Greek peninsula.” American anthropologist W. M. Krogman put it simply [36]: “Nordics today have not cornered the market on blondism!”

        The Undiscovered Jew

        May 15, 2014 at 9:46 PM

      • Side profile of Julius Caesar. His jawline, nose, chin, skull shape, hair, and brow are all consistent with modern ‘Guido’ racial characteristics. The nose in particular is non-Swedish.

        The Undiscovered Jew

        May 15, 2014 at 10:08 PM

      • “Well, at least they aren’t being called “guidos” this time!” ————- Good catch. Let’s hope this (temporary?) oversight is corrected before the next Staten Is. post.

        Curle

        May 15, 2014 at 11:12 PM

      • TUJ is right.

        not only right about the ancient Greeks and Romans but…

        he didn’t say it. i will. racism is largely a phenomenon of the late 19th c and later among Germanic or Germanic language speaking peoples.

        jorge videla

        May 15, 2014 at 11:29 PM

  13. Randy Newman had this all figured out, in his classic “It’s Money that Matters”:

    Of all of the people that I used to know
    Most never adjusted to the great big world
    I see them lurking in book stores
    Working for the Public Radio
    Carrying their babies around in a sack on their back
    Moving careful and slow

    (Chorus)
    It’s money that matters
    Hear what I say
    It’s money that matters
    In the USA

    All of these people are much brighter than I
    In any fair system they would flourish and thrive
    But they barely survive
    They eke out a living and they barely survive

    When I was a young boy, maybe thirteen
    I took a hard look around me and asked what does it mean?
    So I talked to my father, and he didn’t know
    And I talked to my friend and he didn’t know
    And I talked to my brother and he didn’t know
    And I talked to everybody that I knew

    (Chorus)
    It’s money that matters
    Now you know that it’s true
    It’s money that matters
    Whatever you do

    Then I talked to a man lived up on the county line
    I was washing his car with a friend of mine
    He was a little fat guy in a red jumpsuit
    I said “You look kind of funny”
    He said “I know that I do”

    “But I got a great big house on the hill here
    And a great big blonde wife inside it
    And a great big pool in my backyard and another great big pool
    beside it
    Sonny it’s money that matters, hear what I say
    It’s money that matters in the USA
    It’s money that matters
    Now you know that it’s true
    It’s money that matters whatever you do”

    jimbo

    May 14, 2014 at 1:15 PM

    • Yea, well short people have no reason to live.

      E. Rekshun

      May 14, 2014 at 5:37 PM

      • Right. I mean, you gotta pick’em up just to say hello………

        MaryK

        May 14, 2014 at 8:54 PM

      • We love L.A.

        Love it!

        Socially Extinct

        May 19, 2014 at 1:43 AM

  14. I have been spending months trying to get my study published on this topic, but nobody wants it. SAT data shows that math ability was associated with high income in the 90s. Now, verbal ability is more closely associated with high income, but at some education levels, higher family income has a slight negative association with verbal scores with multiple linear regression. Almost all socioeconomic status influence on SAT score comes from parents’ education, probably due to genetics. Income doesn’t really matter, after regression. You should also see Duckworth et al on the role of motivation in IQ scores and how it explains the association between IQ and employment. Gregory Cochran glibly dismissed this.

    nooffensebut

    May 14, 2014 at 2:07 PM

    • as geneticist steve jones said, “one can’t slice the cake. one has to unbake a cake.”

      “intelligent” is a noun. “smart” is an adjective. is there an english verb which means “to act intelligently”?

      intelligence develops. it isn’t “just there”. smart people are more motivated to do the things that smart people do. they’re more curious. they like being challenged intellectually. this personality trait over the decades effects greater intelligence.

      jorge videla

      May 14, 2014 at 4:35 PM

      • “‘intelligent’ is a noun.” That is incorrect on the most basic level. What is your native language? Just curious, not trying to berate you.

        Ryan_Clark

        May 14, 2014 at 8:59 PM

      • i should have written “intelligence”.

        my native language is english and i scored a perfect 800 on the gre verbal, etc.

        jorge videla

        May 15, 2014 at 12:01 AM

      • but then i scored in the 6th percentile on the GMAT analytic writing and only the 80th percentile on the old TSWE.

        both parents were english majors. i have no excuse, except perhaps that i prefer fowler’s, whereas the TSWE likely followed the MLA or some other prole style manual.

        jorge videla

        May 15, 2014 at 12:23 AM

  15. Higher IQ translates into having higher income. All studies people cite to reject this are bogus. They control for things that directly correlate with IQ.

    MyTwoCents

    May 14, 2014 at 2:17 PM

    • IQ is modestly correlated with income. But IQ causes better education which in turn causes the higher income through entrance to better career tracks. High IQ is also correlated with wealthier parents who can provide better opportunities.

      Low IQ predicts poverty better than high IQ predicts wealth.

      • It is income that correlates with IQ, not necessarily wealth or poverty. However, when you already have zillions, you can hire the whole organization (essentially a bunch of high IQ people) to manage your wealth /generate income. An equivalent IQ of this bunch may exceed IQ of any living single person. So, you need to be careful what you do when you do your correlations. Also, you cannot rely upon other people’s studies in social sciences because they are not designed to study society. They are designed to provide ideological support and educate (or you can say condition) new members of society.

        MyTwoCents

        May 14, 2014 at 5:50 PM

      • right. a surprise of the nlsy was that iq correlated more with income than with wealth. but the people studied were only ca 40, iirc.

        jorge videla

        May 15, 2014 at 12:00 AM

    • i think there is a deep cognitive bias at work, not to mention ideology, in those who think the rich and the smart are close to being congruent.

      of course there’s the just world phenomenon, but it’s more than that. the cashier at walmart with a tiny head and her hair drawn up exposing a huge wart on her scalp…

      the reaction: that could never be me under even had i had the worst environment. i must be fundamentally, genetically, superior to this person. there must be a continuum from people like this to me.

      but people like this are a small minority. the continuum hypothesis is vitiated when one looks just at those with at least a bachelor’s degree. and the majority of disgusting people do not look, to me, liek another species. the rich are not that much better looking than average. and most hideous people are hideous as a result of poor diet and no exercise.

      jorge videla

      May 14, 2014 at 4:43 PM

  16. Schooling math ability at 13 has nothing to do with practical math ability at 31.

    Wealthy people tend to hide, or have unusual forms of, their wealth and incomes, so the results are at best lightly correlated from the start.

    Next!

    That said, the bottom 40% are the <95 IQ so have modest results. Many have trouble typing their shoes or spelling consistently. The top 1% are 135+ IQ. They're your MD's, engineers, long-term investors who do well. Most social science studies seem interested in either poorly demonstrating or denying the obvious.

    rob

    May 14, 2014 at 2:37 PM

    • i have trouble typing my shoes too.

      Most social science studies seem interested in either poorly demonstrating or denying the obvious.

      it’s so obvious that it isn’t true.

      jorge videla

      May 14, 2014 at 4:46 PM

      • Jorge, read.

        rob

        May 15, 2014 at 4:29 AM

      • i read what you wrote, and it is false, yet paradoxically obvious.

        jorge videla

        May 15, 2014 at 8:03 PM

  17. Smart, aggressive, sociable people convince others to give them money–lawyers, doctors, financiers, car salesmen, etc. Mathy people do math and vaguely hope someone makes a sandwich appear, because they’re starting to feel hungry.

    Dippity Do

    May 14, 2014 at 2:56 PM

    • I’ve been to law school, and the average law student is bookish and not especially extroverted.

      • II went to law school too. The people who actually end up practicing private sector law almost always have
        a rather extraverted, though offhand, “of course I know the answer” attitude. Lawyers are famous for never saying, “I don’t know,” or even “that’s an interesting question.” So introversion actually is highly correlated with making money in law. If you’re ever in a courtroom full of lawyers, the most successful guy is the one bantering with the judge.

        explainer21

        May 14, 2014 at 4:26 PM

      • Maybe, but I bet partners in Big Law firms are highly slanted to the “smart, aggressive” side. They let the bookish grunts do the 100 hour weeks researching crap while the partners sell the firm itself and win business. C’mon, I’ve seen “Suits”!

        peterike

        May 14, 2014 at 4:48 PM

      • Yes, with notable a exception of the the 5% or so aspiring to be trial lawyers.

        anon

        May 14, 2014 at 7:03 PM

      • Guido Lawyers are probably extroverted. BIGLAWYERs not so much because most of them don’t have to be in the courtroom, and they don’t need to market themselves like the GLs.

        When a celebrity or an infamous person needs a lawyer, they usually hire a GL who loves to be in the spotlight.

        JS

        May 14, 2014 at 9:39 PM

      • I like BIGLAW lawyers. They are the first to tell me when they don’t know something, don’t specialize in that area of the law and are willing to research and shepherdize their cases. The dummy lawyers just rely on the textbooks that were keyed to their classes in law school.

        map

        May 15, 2014 at 2:31 AM

    • “I’ve been to law school, and the average law student is bookish and not especially extroverted.” —————-

      I think it depends entirely on where you went to law school. In my region, of the two largest law schools one ranks in the 90s the other in the low 100s. I rarely meet a lawyer from one of those schools who I can even imagine had an IQ at 130 or higher. The nerd law school in our region only ranges top 20-30 (depending on the year) and was loaded up with poorly socialized people like those you mention. My most frequent take away after meeting lawyers in this region (most going to the lower tier schools) is that they have aren’t smart enough to know what they don’t know. Some are shockingly confident in their (often) stunningly superficial analyses.

      Curle

      May 15, 2014 at 11:39 AM

  18. So what. I’m a math lecturer at a small university in western Canada. I’m certainly not rich but my husband and I own a house and have no debt. We live comfortably. I’d rather not be rich than be a mean, aggressive asshole. I’m introverted and I like to be helpful and agreeable.

    Rosenmops

    May 14, 2014 at 5:35 PM

    • From what I’ve been hearing, the average Canadian lives better than the average American. Besides the cold climate (with the exception of your neck in the woods), which seems intolerable to many of your southern neighbors, Canada is probably a psychologically healthier place to live due to a saner political, educational and healthcare system. Further, you guys have fancier place names than we do. Saskatoon/Saskatchewan sounds like a fictional place in Star Wars, and I would rather tell people I’m from Manitoba, than Mississippi or Montana.

      JS

      May 14, 2014 at 10:04 PM

      • Not just Canada. I will give you an unlikely source. India. Even middle class people have luxuries that only top 3-5% of US populations have. My brother makes just around 35000 usd in india. That’s crap poverty wages in the west. He and his wife have 1 servant for cooking, one for cleaning dishes, one for cleaning house, a chauffeur, gardener 2x a week. My wife wants to import them all whenever she visits india.lol. that’s just middle class example. Now if you are wealthy in india you can live like a king.

        wt

        May 15, 2014 at 1:22 PM

      • Yeah, but I can afford a more expensive television. They probably have to watch a crappy old CRT while their maid is cooking dinner.

      • “Yeah, but I can afford a more expensive television” ————— Perhaps, but as Fussell says, TV is prole while having servants is very upper class. Having said that, I understand a fair number of upper income immigrants these days have found a way to have it all. They bring servants with them from the old country and take their VISAs away when they get here. That dude in Cleveland isn’t the only person with workers locked in basements.

        Curle

        May 15, 2014 at 10:47 PM

      • Canadians have the benefit of a sane immigration policy that keeps most poor and incapable third worlders out. You need to be either smart or possess wealth to get into Canada. Thus they end up with Taiwanese and we end up with Somalis. And, there’s a big difference between the average Taiwanese and the average Somali.

        Curle

        May 15, 2014 at 10:58 PM

      • Canada also has royalty – province names such as British Columbia – Saskatchewan – Manitoba – Ontario – Newfoundland & Labrador, when compared to our state names like Idaho, Alabama and Pennsylvania that sound prolish.

        JS

        May 16, 2014 at 9:32 AM

      • @Curle: Canadians have the benefit of a sane immigration policy that keeps most poor and incapable third worlders out.

        That’s what I thought, but how do all the Jamaicans and Indians get into Toronto?

        E. Rekshun

        May 16, 2014 at 3:44 PM

      • Canadian immigration by country of origin 2012. Here are the top ten countries constituting 56% of the total.

        1 China 33,018 12.8
        2 Philippines 32,747 12.7
        3 India 28,943 11.2
        4 Pakistan 9,931 3.9
        5 United States 9,414 3.7
        6 France 8,138 3.2
        7 Iran 6,463 2.5
        8 United Kingdom and Colonies 6,365 2.5
        9 Haiti 5,599 2.2
        10 South Korea 5,308 2.1

        There is a skew towards skilled immigrants in the Canadian system which likely accounts for the Indians. The two notable third world countries on the list are Philippines and Haiti. They may be getting the best of the best from those countries as well. Whereas, we are getting the worst of Mexico. And in much higher proportions. Anyway you cut it, the better countries outnumber the bad countries.

        Curle

        May 17, 2014 at 12:19 PM

  19. “Low IQ predicts poverty better than high IQ predicts wealth.”

    Agreed. Something to keep in mind when it comes to IQ predicting wealth — where to draw the line. IQ has diminishing returns that make it less important above ~125. At which point other factors (like extraversion, conscientiousness, etc) become more important. There may be a few fields that require 145+ that pay well. But there are plenty of things you can do with only 125 that pay even better. That’s why a lot of smart people feel cheated when they see someone who is, relatively speaking, a ‘dumbass’ making more money than them. It used to make me mad, too. But where is it written that ‘smart’ people are supposed to make more money? All things being equal it’s better to be smarter. But its still no guarantee of wealth.

    destructure

    May 14, 2014 at 6:52 PM

    • Some libertarians have put down in writing that people get paid for the value they create, so therefore one would assume that smart people would get paid more because they create more value.

      • Value is subjective. All we can say is that in a free market people voluntarily engage in trade which they think provides value to them at the time. Though everyone has suffered buyer’s remorse I think you’ll agree that you’re probably a better judge of where you should spend your money than the crackhead down the street. Or, even worse, some politician who gets reelected by spending your hard earned on his friends’ pet projects. I’d rather the crackhead smoke it.

        destructure

        May 15, 2014 at 1:53 AM

      • That you get paid for value is what a large part of economics is about. Not quite sure how the second follows.

        rob

        May 15, 2014 at 4:42 AM

      • value is NOT subjective.

        the HUGE LIE of libertarianism.

        jorge videla

        May 15, 2014 at 8:06 PM

      • and the labor theory of value can be formalized and captures most of what value is objectively. it’s not the hopelessly naive theory that neo-liberals think it is.

        jorge videla

        May 15, 2014 at 8:07 PM

      • . . . value they create or ability to prey on the weaknesses of others.

        Curle

        May 15, 2014 at 10:50 PM

      • “value is NOT subjective.”

        Sure it is. About the only people who disagree are marxists and fascists. And I don’t think you’re a marxist.

        destructure

        May 16, 2014 at 2:46 AM

      • and destructure sounds like fox news again.

        value is even more objective than beauty.

        if believing such and such means you’re a marxist or a fascist then such and such must be false.

        well i’ve read a lot of marx and would rank him the second greatest thinker in the last 150 years, the greatest is of course martin heidegger.

        generally, “marxism” is a term of abuse only for people who’ve never read marx or for those who’ve tried to read him but were too stupid to understand him.

        marx was not a materialist in the vulgar, richard dawkins, sort of way, but in the vulgar valley girl sort of way. he was a materialist in that he was materialistic. he was a materialistic-ist and a technical determinist. just like many billionaires and engineers.

        try The German Ideology then try the first chapters of Capital

        jorge videla

        May 16, 2014 at 3:24 PM

    • even 125 is too low a threshold. that’s the top 5%.

      but it is part of ideology that the rich and the smart are the same people.

      it’s clear that the us economy isn’t making full use of its talent.

      as fran liebowtz said, “whoever thinks the richest are the smartest has either never met a rich person or never met a smart person.”

      and in the putatively high iq fields one will often find people with lopsided factor scores. lopsidedness is more common the higher the iq. for iqs above 130 the general factor “explains” only ca 35% of the variance.

      that old douche jensen said himself pretty much what Malcolm Gladwell did in Outliers. there’s a threhold, but once you’ve crossed it what matters are specific abilities and passion.

      jorge videla

      May 14, 2014 at 11:55 PM

      • should’ve been “too high a threshold”.

        jorge videla

        May 15, 2014 at 12:12 AM

      • “even 125 is too low a threshold. that’s the top 5%.”

        I doubt most people with IQ’s of 125 are self made millionaires. But it’s probably about average for those who are.

        but it is part of ideology that the rich and the smart are the same people.

        There are smart poor people and dumb rich people. However, if you took the average IQ for each wealth/income group you’d probably find that the groups with higher wealth/income also had a higher average IQ. You disagree because you think you’re very smart but can’t understand why you’re not wealthy. The answer is simple — what have you done to become wealthy?

        it’s clear that the us economy isn’t making full use of its talent.

        No economy does.

        as fran liebowtz said, “whoever thinks the richest are the smartest has either never met a rich person or never met a smart person.”

        Perhaps. But the wealthy have the luxury of acting stupidly.

        and in the putatively high iq fields one will often find people with lopsided factor scores. lopsidedness is more common the higher the iq. for iqs above 130 the general factor “explains” only ca 35% of the variance.

        So what you’re saying is that the probability of flipping tails once in a row is 0.5 and twice in a row is 0.25?

        that old douche jensen said himself pretty much what Malcolm Gladwell did in Outliers. there’s a threhold, but once you’ve crossed it what matters are specific abilities and passion.

        Probably. Though I’ll bet that “old douche jenson” said it first. Because there’s very little Gladwell has written which someone else didn’t say first.

        destructure

        May 16, 2014 at 3:25 AM

      • that’s right. the very rich are more often than not very smart, and they’re always very smart if their fortune comes from some technical field (which includes finance in some cases).

        dumb rich people who aren’t pro athletes almost always have inherited their riches.

        there is a positive correlation between IQ and income and wealth. the leftist/liberal/whatever who denies this is a straw man. the disagreement is how strong the correlation is. (if 125 is the average “rich” IQ, this would mean a threshold of a, where phi(a)/(1-PHI(a)) = 25/15, or a = 117.5.)

        those who justify enormous inequality and lack of opportunity on the basis of IQ just don’t know the facts. but such people are likely to draw up a list of other psychological traits/virtues which justify the status quo.

        but self-identified conservatives also tend to be hereditists. but then how can the poor be blamed for their bad genes? even if social class were somehow innate, it would still be hateful to any moral person. but its remedy would be eugenics rather than redistribution, and any government powerful enough to carry out eugenics would be a threat to the power of capital. the bottom line: the status quo is evil and is justified by idiots and evil people.

        jorge videla

        May 16, 2014 at 4:35 PM

      • “even if social class were somehow innate, it would still be hateful to any moral person.”

        Did you say “morality”? What is the basis of this morality — Religion? Societal mores? Your imagination? All of the above? If you haven’t sense enough to see past your own psychological programming (whether that programming be genetic or environmental) and make a rational argument then just keep it to yourself. Don’t bore me with fairy tales about “morality”.

        “but its remedy would be eugenics rather than redistribution, and any government powerful enough to carry out eugenics would be a threat to the power of capital.”

        Any government powerful enough to carry out redistribution will lead to tyranny.

        “the bottom line: the status quo is evil and is justified by idiots and evil people.”

        On pg 287 of The Righteous Mind, Haidt discusses a study in which liberals and conservatives are asked to empathize across the ideological divide. Haidt says that after determining whether someone is liberal or conservative, he then has each person answer the standard battery of questions as if he were the opposite ideology. So, he would ask a liberal to answer the questions as if he were a “typical conservative” and vice-versa. What he finds is quite striking: “The results were clear and consistent. Moderates and conservatives were most accurate in their predictions, whether they were pretending to be liberals or conservatives. Liberals were the least accurate, especially those who describe themselves as ‘very liberal.’ The biggest errors in the whole study came when liberals answered the Care and Fairness questions while pretending to be conservatives.” In other words, moderates and conservatives can understand the liberal worldview but liberals are unable to relate to the conservative worldview, especially when it comes to questions of care and fairness.

        In short, Haidt’s research suggests that many liberals really do believe that conservatives are heartless bastards–or as a friend of mine once remarked, “Conservatives think that liberals are good people with bad ideas, whereas liberals think conservatives are bad people”–and very liberal people think that people who disagree with them are “idiots and evil”.

        destructure

        May 17, 2014 at 12:08 PM

      • apparently lion doesn’t believe in good and evil so he won’t post this:

        what’s wrong with “tyranny” d? “right” and “wrong”, “good” and “evil” are just words to you, meaningless.

        Finished with my woman ’cause she couldn’t help me with my mind…

        jorge videla

        May 18, 2014 at 11:45 PM

      • semper crescis. aut decrescis…

        jorge videla

        May 20, 2014 at 12:05 AM

  20. Having high math ability will most likely keep someone from being poor, but it certainly won’t earn them real money. That takes verbal ability, game, and also being able to exceed stereotypical expectations.

    Bilbo Baggins

    May 14, 2014 at 7:09 PM

    • That’s really not true. There are thousands of very high math ability quant traders at banks, hedge funds and prop shops making millions a year who lack all of those criteria. The highest paid graduates in my Ivy League undergraduate class were math, physics and CS majors.

      Doug

      May 14, 2014 at 10:29 PM

      • Is it the math ability or the GPA? Getting a 3.9 GPA in Physics from an Ivy will certainly get you in Goldman because you have to be a genius to get that GPA.

        In fact, Goldman’s criteria is (3.8 gpa or above w/quantitative skills)

        map

        May 15, 2014 at 2:09 AM

      • if that’s true then GS isn’t selecting for iq, and is at a huge disadvantage to competitors in europe which might select based on cumulative exams. there are no “grades” in europe like their are in canada and and the us. the quality of the degree is measured by one or two cumulative exams.

        grades are short term, subjective, idiosyncratic, dependent on projects and homework not just exams, etc.

        jorge videla

        May 15, 2014 at 8:11 PM

      • Jorge,

        Goldman screens by the schools ranking, then by gpa, then by major, in addition to athleticism.

        Map

        May 16, 2014 at 11:59 AM

      • Europeans screen by family pedigree.

        Map

        May 16, 2014 at 12:00 PM

      • <europeans screen by family pedigree

        more truthiness. the us has the most rigid class structure in the developed world.

        the america as anti-aristocracy is and has always been a lie.

        jorge videla

        May 16, 2014 at 3:02 PM

      • jorge,

        America is an aristocratic society because all societies are aristocratic. That just takes different forms.

        map

        May 16, 2014 at 6:37 PM

  21. “People with lower SAT scores at the same college probably have higher conscientiousness and higher extraversion because they made up for their low SAT scores with higher grades and more impressive extracurricular activities (which would be correlated with extraversion), and Hsu’s charts show that conscientiousness and extraversion are more important for earning income than IQ. ”

    Might the explanation for this instead run: Those with the highest SAT scores are likely to be those who got in more purely on merit, being genetic outliers in terms of intelligence: very smart people from average families. Those who got “lower” SAT scores (that would still be relatively high) might be more likely to come from wealthier, more connected families. Their entrance into elite schools had less to do with their individual merit but their connections well made up for it after graduation.

    TimM

    May 14, 2014 at 7:32 PM

    • “those who got in more purely on merit” ARE the entirety of those who got in in the ENTIRE rest of the world.

      jorge videla

      May 15, 2014 at 8:13 PM

      • The world is controlled by wealthy and powerful people who will not allow meritocracy to get in the way of their own children.

        Map

        May 16, 2014 at 12:02 PM

      • that is true…in america.

        jorge videla

        May 16, 2014 at 3:03 PM

      • That is true…everywhere, even in America.

        map

        May 16, 2014 at 6:34 PM

  22. One thing that’s evident from Hsu’s charts is that the benefit of extraversion doesn’t exceed IQ until around age 40. IQ is probably more important for younger people’s earnings because they’re mostly working directly on tasks. As workers age though the best ones get transitioned to senior management roles. Here is where extraversion and general people skills become important.

    For those in introvert currently in their 20s and 30s, don’t worry too much. You have years to practice on your management skills before they’ll become critical to your career path.

    Doug

    May 14, 2014 at 10:27 PM

  23. Well, legendary mathematician Grigori Perelman did turn down that million dollar math prize because of his issues with the math community and specifically said was he not interested in money or fame. Similarly eccentric Grothendieck also retired from the math world in a monk like fashion. Perhaps the smartest minds in math really can be disinterested in acquisitive materialism, as Hsu seems to suggest?

    But then, the aforementioned are rather rarefied academics who, having little in common with mere high IQ/math ability mortals, pursued their own ideals to the logical conclusion. Abstract academic math seems a thing unto itself, with exceedingly hard value extraction (applications not impossible, as G.H. Hardy contended, but way out there) placing it apart from the pragmatism of the “T” and “E” in the (unfortunate and overused) “STEM” acronym. This seems to be real self actualization, which is usually seen as orthogonal to STEM, thus the issue with grouping all of math in with the cubicle farm inmates.

    One wonders about the success rate at the genius level in actually doing solid work like Perelman. How many math geniuses wind up in obscurity like the high IQ Sidis, and how many possess the math intuition and insight + intelligence to actually live up to their potential?

    Sanjuro

    May 15, 2014 at 2:55 AM

    • Most genius are just repulsive to the ‘pygmies’ and so their career paths close.

      They have to be led well.

      The movie Good Will Hunting shows it. A prole genius swayed into wrong ways by his prole and worthless buddies. He will be dumped by his med school ‘girlfriend’ at Stanford, who will marry a rich medical equipment salesman, and will join the bums in Oakland.

      Colmainen

      May 15, 2014 at 3:08 PM

      • the severley gifted idea was put to the lie by the terman study, but it may have been a lie itself.

        but even terman found that his very brightest had some tendency toward “maladjustment”. but these were the brightest of those all with iq >= 140 as children.

        jorge videla

        May 15, 2014 at 8:15 PM

      • LOL, I would totally watch that sequel.

        MC

        May 15, 2014 at 9:37 PM

      • Will hunting had a cadre of wonderfully supportive friends. Have you seen the movie?

        Map

        May 16, 2014 at 12:04 PM

    • Perlman appears to be mentally ill. Full stop.

      Newdist

      May 16, 2014 at 8:47 PM

      • ah…the ideological backdoor that’s always open…in america especially.

        frequency of diagnoses of mental illness are strongly correlated with income inequality.

        jorge videla

        May 21, 2014 at 8:48 PM

  24. In a previous post, Lion mused that people with higher IQs probably have better savings-to-income ratios. That’s something I’d like to see investigated because I know some clams who make six figures, but are one year and one layoff away from poverty.

    Vince, the Lionhearted

    May 15, 2014 at 3:49 AM

    • but the nlsy showed this wasn’t the case. and the smart were more likely to get into financial trouble as the stupid. but maybe this was student loans.

      jorge videla

      May 15, 2014 at 8:19 PM

  25. “As workers age though the best ones get transitioned to senior management roles”

    How often does this actually happen?

    Alex

    May 15, 2014 at 5:02 AM

    • and it’s the best ones remember. ideology is a faculty for some, a sixth sense.;)

      jorge videla

      May 15, 2014 at 8:20 PM

  26. More Donald Sterling content please . . .

    There’s some real low hanging fruit out there. This for instance http://www.nytimes.com/2014/05/15/opinion/blow-the-aids-shaming-of-magic-johnson.html?hpw&rref=opinion&_r=0

    Curle

    May 15, 2014 at 9:59 AM

    • Low hanging fruit in terms of the writer. A guy who could work for Minister Farrakhan and is now an Op-Ed Writer for the NY Times, with a degree from a crap school in the south and gets a high paying job with a liberal toilet paper. Anyone with half a brain could be an Op-Ed writer.

      That’s liberalism for you!

      JS

      May 15, 2014 at 11:34 AM

    • Not surprised. The IQ fetishism in HBD has always been a problem.

      The evidence does show genetic correlations for wealth accumulation. Absolutely certainly.

      Yet the ability to get money is closer to inheriting a kind of money magnetism!

      It’s far less about correlation with some other discrete, reducible trait such as IQ or even extraversion.

      If you look closely enough at the world you will see. But you won’t like what you see. There is no ‘reason’ for the money accumulation, no rationalization involving justice or goodness possible. Just world fallacy indeed.

      It’s just a trait like many other that has, in our current era, hugely disproportionate impact. And whether people get it is really up to chance (your parents).

      Alsen

      May 15, 2014 at 1:52 PM

      • what’s the difference between this trait and greed and venality?

        jorge videla

        May 15, 2014 at 8:22 PM

      • I agree with this.

        Curle

        May 15, 2014 at 11:55 PM

      • The difference is it doesn’t matter if you’re greedy!

        Alsen

        May 16, 2014 at 7:56 PM

  27. “Although people with high math ability create more value, their value is transferred to extraverted and agressive people who get paid more money as salesmen or as higher-level management.”

    And here’s a perfect example that bears that out:

    http://www.vanityfair.com/business/2013/09/michael-lewis-goldman-sachs-programmer

    aandrews

    May 15, 2014 at 6:57 PM

    • See, this is where value-transference, though a good concept, gets weaker. The only reason why Sergey was able to create those programs was because he had access to Goldman’s equipment, data feeds, environment, resources and client-base. Programming is contextual and Goldman provided this guy with an opportunity to build code that GS wanted.

      map

      May 16, 2014 at 6:45 PM

  28. Since Jews are the highest-income ethnic group in the US, is it possible that big-5 personality factors play a role in their success? I’d say that Jews are stereotypically extroverted. It’s possible that a white-collar economic niche could have driven selection for the same personality traits that are remunerative in the US today.

    Ivan

    May 15, 2014 at 9:08 PM

    • There are also a lot of nerdy introverted Jews.

    • i think the latter day racialists, that is hbders, would say jews are like smart italians. mediterraneans are known for their extraversion in comparison to other europeans and ne asians.

      a neapolitan trapped in seoul would soon find himself in the loony bin.

      jorge videla

      May 15, 2014 at 11:36 PM

      • Most American Jews are from Germany, Poland, etc.

      • Ashkenazim are genetically linked with Southern Europe and Anatolia; they are very much related to people of those regions, and less of Eastern Europe and much of the German population.

        JS

        May 16, 2014 at 9:37 AM

      • Spaniards living in China are more interested in partying and sport activities than engaging with the local population, that you find with Northern Euros and American Hillbillies.

        JS

        May 16, 2014 at 9:39 AM

      • @lion

        and charles barkley is from alabama.

        jorge videla

        May 16, 2014 at 3:04 PM

    • Jews were a major demographic in NYC and still are, but not to the certain extent of yesteryear. When you are a smart minority – majority, you feel comfortable and are likely to exhibit extroversion.

      The problem with their success is that elite Jews are for the most part sympathetic of blacks, more than any other group. This translates into the dysfunctionality of what we call liberalism.

      JS

      May 16, 2014 at 9:25 AM

      • Only elite secular Jews.

        Prole Jews and religious Jews aren’t any sympathetic than the average white gentile, and in fact prole Jews in NYC are less sympathetic than gentile whites in NYC, as we see form the last NYC election results in which Jews went more strongly for the Republican candidate than white gentiles.

      • Jews voting Republican doesn’t translate into disliking blacks. Jews regardless of religious affiliation are more receptive/sympathetic of black causes than the average white gentile.

        Hasidic Jews at one point in time tried to make peace with blacks after the Crown Heights Riots stemming from the death of a black kid who was run over by a Hasidic driver.

        Now compared them to the Italians who killed Yusef Hawkins in Howard Beach, who mistook him for a thug, as blacks were problem in that neighborhood back in the day. No self-respecting IA would come out and say “we were wrong, we’re sorry”. Do you see the Italian American community coming out in solidarity with blacks after that incident. The answer is no. Now, I’m not trying to say that IAs are a bad people; they just felt black troublemakers don’t deserve any respect and will never get any from them.

        JS

        May 16, 2014 at 1:09 PM

      • The prole Jews in Midwood Brooklyn who are being beaten up by blacks in “knockout game” attacks aren’t so happy about blacks right now.

        (On the other hand, when an elite white is beaten up, whether he be Jew or Gentile, he blames his white privilege rather than the attacker.)

      • “Now, I’m not trying to say that IAs are a bad people; they just felt black troublemakers don’t deserve any respect”

        JS, you must have known I’d be coming after you on this! First of all, there were plenty of IAs who expressed sadness that Yusef Hawkins had been killed. Many of them were interviewed on the news. An elderly Italian woman (who spoke in Italian and had her words translated) made a statement that all human life is precious. Another woman labeled Al Sharpton a troublemaker but said “It IS a sin that that boy did die, that was somebody’s child.” A group of IA residents greeted Roy Innes warmly when he visited the community and defended the people there against accusations of racism. The problem is that you were expecting a whole community to act as one big extended family, which is not a realistic expectation. Hasidic Jews were operating more as members of a religion than an ethnicity. Religion often provides a basis for this type of collective statement. But what many IAs were angry about was the march through the community, which they saw as an attempt to blame the whole community, and as a safety risk. None of that anger meant that people were indifferent to the murder itself. It should go without saying that the death of an innocent person is always a tragedy. To ask for some kind of public statement on behalf of a entire community is insulting. People are responsible for their own actions, not the actions of any one of their neighbors.

        Incidentally, some years ago there was a story on the news where a black kid had been chased by a mob of angry whites and went into a local pizzeria for help. The owners protected him and kept him safe. And where did this incident take place? Shock of shocks! The dreaded Staten Island!

        MaryK

        May 16, 2014 at 8:03 PM

      • Incidentally, some years ago there was a story on the news where a black kid had been chased by a mob of angry whites and went into a local pizzeria for help. The owners protected him and kept him safe. And where did this incident take place? Shock of shocks! The dreaded Staten Island!

        The fact that IA proles tend to be on the offensive with blacks whom they suspect as troublemakers, clearly show that IAs are generally not very welcoming of blacks. Other White Ethnic groups such as Jews and surprisingly, Greeks tend to be friendlier with blacks. Jews are known to employ blacks as their employees, and I see it with some Greeks. Italians rarely if ever, have any love affair with blacks, either prole or SWPL. You called Rudy Giuliani a Manhattan Liberal, yet he showed very little sympathy for blacks, and would often snub them whenever there was a social function that involve a large gathering of them. Even die hard Democrats such as Andrew Cuomo, had strong reservations of appointing blacks for certain gov’t positions up in Albany, where he took criticism by some of his fellow party members.

        You remember Amadou Diallo, the African Immigrant who was brutalized by the NYPD officer – Justin Volpe? That’s another incident where an IA went on the offensive on blacks.

        Again, I’m not saying the strong dislike of blacks by IAs is a bad thing. They of course are aware of things that are being addressed on this blog in relation to HBD.

        JS

        May 16, 2014 at 9:56 PM

      • De Blasio is Italian. Look who he’s married to.

      • De Blasio is Italian. Look who he’s married to.

        De Blasio is only half Italian, and his dad was an Ivy League graduate. He probably didn’t grow up being “Italian”. Further, some Italian Americans who didn’t vote for de Blasio, called him a huckster or fraud, because he secured votes from the IA community by peddling his last name. And he did this, because he wasn’t really Italian.

        JS

        May 17, 2014 at 3:24 PM

      • People somehow get labeled as Jews even when they are less Jewish than De Blasio is Italian.

      • There isn’t anything Italian about de Blasio other than his surname, which is his mother’s maiden name.

        People with a hint of Jewish ancestry get labeled as being “Jewish” because of the pervading stereotype that Jews are a very proud people, even among secular ones, who like to instill some of it to their gentile spouses and half Jewish children.

        JS

        May 18, 2014 at 10:48 AM

      • And there isn’t anything especially Jewish about a lot of people who are labeled “Jews.”

      • “There isn’t anything Italian about de Blasio other than his surname, which is his mother’s maiden name.”

        It is hard to know what influence one’s ethnicity has on him unless you know the person well or are willing to ask him this question. It makes little sense to judge people by their last name. You may be raised by a divorced mother and her family and hardly have known or even seen your father. One parent may have a large family closeby and the other parent have no family or little family nearby – in which case you are most likely going to identify with the ethnicity of the family you spent time with. Then there is this factor: if you have two ethnicities you are likely to identify with the one that has most recently arrived in America. This is why most people who are half-Italian (in the US, that is) identify more as Italian. The other groups that Italians intermarried with (Irish, German, Anglo-Saxon) arrived earlier and lost a lot of their ethnic distinctiveness years ago. Italian-Americans are in the process of losing theirs also.

        But I’m guessing that what JS means about DeBlasio not being Italian is that he doesn’t fit a stereotype. DeBlasio said that he changed his last name because he was raised primarily by his mother’s family and that he wanted to honor them. I had thought of doing this same thing myself, but it would have been disrespectful to my Irish-American grandparents, who, unfortunately, never lived to see a grandchild.

        MaryK

        May 18, 2014 at 3:50 PM

      • MaryK

        If there’s a rational argument to be made and a reason for making it then that’s fine. But never allow yourself to be put on the defensive by trying to prove the converse of another person’s opinion. You’d have been better off simply telling him to go f*ck himself. Don’t get sucked into playing someone’s game.

        destructure

        May 18, 2014 at 4:09 PM

      • Granted de Blasio’s mother married an Ivy League grad and attended a heavy Liberals Arts college, that makes her an outlier, and not fitting of the prole stereotype that stigmatizes the IA community. And Ivy Leagues are anti-Italian, as some leaders of the IA community have pointed out, either stemming from IAs mostly not caring for an Ivy League education, or that these institutions don’t see any incentive in placing a large contingent of IAs in them.

        JS

        May 18, 2014 at 5:05 PM

      • “DeBlasio said that he changed his last name because he was raised primarily by his mother’s family and that he wanted to honor them.”

        Well that’s his positive spin, but it’s a half-truth. Absent some kind of deep resentment/abuse/abandonment, a son is not going to renounce his father’s surname.

        anon

        May 18, 2014 at 11:42 PM

  29. This here is some OT Lion chow to chew on.

    Black dude hits $20M lottery. Seems like a perfectly good guy, actually still married with a daughter. He says this about his winning.

    “I’m not going to change,” he said. “I’ve seen many lottery shows and how people wasted their money. That’s not me. I won’t waste it. It will be here until I’m gone.”

    Perfectly sensible, not stereotypical NAM irresponsibility. Good for him! But then he says this:

    “Last year at this time, we were in a car accident and I wrecked a Dodge Ram taking my wife to dinner,“ he said. “I always wanted a Bentley, so I’ll get one after getting my wife a house.”

    He’s still unsure what he’ll get after the Bentley, but he knows he’ll be buying more lottery tickets.

    “I will be back again to play because I know I’m going to win. I’m going to hit the $100 Mega Millions.”

    Bentley. A house. Still buying lottery tickets. He “knows” he’s going to win more. This won’t end well.

    http://nypost.com/2014/05/15/man-wins-20m-jackpot-during-weekly-date-night/

    peterike

    May 15, 2014 at 10:01 PM

    • After taxes, that amount is sliced in half.

      I’ve never come across a black person who had any savings in their account. It’s always living for the moment. And this includes African Immigrants, who are better than the American Blacks.

      JS

      May 16, 2014 at 9:24 AM

      • Some years ago (I forget what decade or the circumstances) I was in some kind of cafeteria and struck up a conservation with a young black man who worked in the establishment’s cafeteria. He also worked part-time at a hospital at night. He was saving up for something – I don’t remember if it was a house, or some kind of job-training program. But he mentioned that the second job provided income that was allowing his savings to grow so he could eventually reach his goal. I remember being impressed with his drive. Also, a former co-worker of mine, also black, had a husband who worked as a paralegal by day and a security guard by night. This was to pay his son’s college tuition. The man, sadly, died in his mid-50 – before his time. I asked my co-worker why she and her husband didn’t tell their son that he’d have to go to a less expensive college. She said “because when your son tells you he got into Georgetown University, you can’t tell him “no, you can’t go.”

        I feel for blacks who work hard and have to deal with the image that they are incompetent and lack future time-orientation.

        MaryK

        May 16, 2014 at 9:06 PM

      • Most blacks lack future time orientation, even among decent blacks; they are always distracted and want to do something for the moment. In fact, I would say there are significantly more blacks who lack it than those who don’t, including those from Africa. I once had an African co-worker who would turn on his Nigerian music while working that became a nuisance for others. And this was in an Accounting firm.

        I remember a black dude who came to my apartment to work on the phone line, and he became distracted when I offered him some high end Swiss chocolate. He began to show a strong level of ecstasy from eating it and demanded more by saying how good it was, while laughing which sidetracked his work for about 5 minutes. This type of obnoxiousness is a common behavior of among blacks.

        Further, most importantly, blacks make terrible teachers/instructors, as they seem to lack the ability to explain things on a deeper level with specificity that also requires research and patience – abilities that are linked with future time orientation. This is the reason as to why there is a dearth of black teachers at the ghetto schools.

        JS

        May 18, 2014 at 11:08 AM

  30. Here is the list of high school kids that managed to get to the top computing olympiad — International Olympiad in Informatics (IOI), being the in the top 4 in US that year. The kind of problems at USACO and IOI are very algorithmic in nature (read: applied math, and as advanced as you can get in high school), and it also has the practical angle (programming). It combines math and CS (which is the part that you also hate). These kids with their high school knowledge are generally one or two standard deviations above the MIT undergrad CS average. So, we’re really talking here about the top of the kids at high school age, usually 12th grade.

    http://www.usaco.org/index.php?page=history

    These guys go to top universities (nobody below top 5 really — a lot of Harvard and MIT) and usually for PhD, but only if it’s top (read MIT, Berkeley, etc — no Harvard here) After school these kids end up in one of the 3 places:

    – academia at top university
    – top quant hedge funds (rentec, 2sigma, etc)
    – tech (a few executives and co-founders in start-ups, and in the worst case at Google/Facebook)

    Really, the worst case scenario for these guys is Google/Facebook Engineering, which boosts very nice benefits (the best really in corporate America), and the salary generally starts around 160k (including bonus, shares) and tends towards 250k in the long term (more if you do really well), all this in a rather stress-free job. Not bad outcomes for being the best in programming/math.

    Ofc, we’re really talking about the top of the top (not just 1%). So clearly being the best at math does matter.

    Zack

    May 15, 2014 at 10:12 PM

    • But this is just an example of being the best at something that pays well. The best lawyers make millions of dollars in income. Anyone who is the best at something will make a lot of money.

      Map

      May 16, 2014 at 12:19 PM

      • “But this is just an example of being the best at something that pays well. The best lawyers make millions of dollars in income. Anyone who is the best at something will make a lot of money.”

        Your comparison is pointless. I’m saying that a contest at age 14-18 is predictive of outcome at age 30. You’re saying, just look at max over entire age of the best lawyers — ie, no prediction. LOL While you’re at it, why don’t you compare with people who won the lottery!

        Zack

        May 16, 2014 at 9:01 PM

      • Zack,

        Being the best at anything will make you successful. That is my point. It says nothing about whether being good at math in general will lead to anything.

        Map

        May 17, 2014 at 4:22 PM

      • “Zack,

        Being the best at anything will make you successful. That is my point. It says nothing about whether being good at math in general will lead to anything.”

        I think you’re wrong.

        1. We hired last year another investor relations guy/marketing, and it’s clear that he doesn’t have the analytic ability, even tho he has 15 years of experience. So he’ll have limited potential. Whenever he needs something, he has to pull somebody with more math ability to help him.
        2. Google figured out that analytical ability matters for project managers (people that manage projects, deal with engineers, UI designers, sales, marketing, etc) So now, a college degree in math or science is required for the position.
        3. Not long ago McKinsey had a study: In consulting management have MBAs and hard science PhDs. They studied who makes better consultants. They get mostly the cream of the crop (lots of HBS, etc). The results were very clear in favor of the hard science PhDs.

        Moreover, the trend today is that many things become more automatized and more analytical (even baseball selection) Having a kid and purposely not teaching him math and related subjects is really bad.

        PS Think about what are the main indicators in high school of “success” later in life. Being good at math is clearly one of them, but to me it’s not clear how it compares to other indicators (good at verbal/debate, or having wealthy parents, or having motivation, etc) I think this is the question: what are the best indicators? Comparing it with the outcomes may not be the right baseline, since there’s randomness in life, and also people’s trajectories change — some become burn-outs others are just starting to develop.

        Zack

        May 18, 2014 at 12:23 PM

    • Most of that quant stuff does not work anyway. The average returns of quant funds have radically collapsed and those that claim high returns do not publicly disclose their books.

      Map

      May 16, 2014 at 12:22 PM

      • and most of the quant technique is applied to very short term trading, right? which is quite limited in the amount of money it can run.

        jorge videla

        May 16, 2014 at 3:09 PM

      • jorge,

        Big firms have access to markets and connections that regular retail investors don’t even have and I believe that most of the trading we are familiar with is a small percentage of the financial world.

        For example, I just found out that the SEC nixed a rule that would allow retail investors to know what a fund’s short positions are, not just its long positions.

        My suspicion is that most quant trading is a hedging technique used against retail markets to insure positions that are created in dark pools or other financial deals which are just gentleman’s agreements at the highest levels of finance. The dollar-cost averaging that we do against index funds in IRA’s and 401(k)’s is just a buy-side to someone else’s sell-side. We retail investors are simply “the hedge” in the investment world, providing liquidity and price discovery for other, bigger deals that we are barely aware.

        Basically, the economists used the efficient market hypothesis to build Wall Street by conditioning the public to ignore volatility.

        map

        May 16, 2014 at 7:04 PM

      • While the quant fund returns have been terrible in the last few years, the best are still doing fine (ie, rentec’s prop, 2sigma, PDT and a couple more) This is more because of the culture these shops set up and the kind of people they select. (very hard to make it to rentec, and much easier to make it to say, cantab)

        But even in bad years, even the bad funds would still pay more than the tech sector.

        Zack

        May 16, 2014 at 9:04 PM

      • so you agree than “economic science” is “proximally and for the most part” just ideology? and some students recently walked out of mankiw’s class for that reason.

        but iirc one indian economist, at chicago of all places, said he thought without government intervention stock markets wouldn’t exist, but at the same time the fed lets the stock market tell it what to do.

        jorge videla

        May 16, 2014 at 11:58 PM

  31. Generally agree with this post, but I don’t think community service has anything to do with extraversion. It has to do with the fact that you come from a wealthy (or at least status conscious) family that knows that doing all that type of bullshit helps you get into elite schools.

    Similarly, people with high SAT scores who don’t go to the best school they can get into come from family that is too poor/too cheap to let them elite schools.

    All things being equal, having a wealthy family helps you make money, both because they will have connections to launch your career, and there is more of an expectation to make money.

    Mike

    May 16, 2014 at 9:27 AM

    • I agree that having a wealthy family helps in many ways, and partially explains why IQ has such a weak correlation with income/wealth, because family wealth is one of the many non-IQ factors that contribute to income/wealth.

      • Wealthy families do not disadvantage their own kids in favor of brilliant strangers.

        Map

        May 16, 2014 at 12:24 PM

      • admission to uni is by exams only in europe and japan and singapore and australia and so forth. there is no affirmative action for the rich in terms of admission to elite uni in any country in the developed world except for the us.

        the us is also unique in its intercollegiate athletics.

        the “city on a hill” has become a flee circus on a dung heap.

        jorge videla

        May 16, 2014 at 3:13 PM

      • a flea circus on a dung heap.

        jorge videla

        May 16, 2014 at 3:14 PM

      • The reason why poverty will never have a significant correlation to IQ is because few -to-no families retain wealth long enough for it to have a natural eugenic effect. In other words, lineages that pass on intelligence are likely to have both wealthy and poor individuals. It’s almost too easy to fall out of wealth. That being said, wealth can have a nurture effect in maximizing innate intelligence through nutrition, education, low stress, etc.

        More poor people will have low IQ, and more wealthy people will have high IQ, but there will always be a significant number of very intelligent, poor individuals due to the fragile nature of wealth.

        Frank

        May 16, 2014 at 5:53 PM

      • jorge,

        Anglosphere universities are ranked the best in the world, ahead of Germany, France and Japan. The Sorbonne, like most European unis, have open enrollment.

        The US is a major promoter of elitism.

        map

        May 16, 2014 at 7:09 PM

      • Anglosphere universities are ranked the best in the world…The US is a major promoter of elitism.

        BS!

        Perhaps with the exception of the Ivies (but even so), America colleges have a crappy Liberal Arts Curriculum. Further, Pseudo-Neo disciplines such as Women Studies and Metropolitan Studies are pure garbage; they don’t strike me as “Elitist” at all. I would say our STEM programs are top notch, but they aren’t elitist in the way where they garner status that you find in Law and Wall St.

        JS

        May 16, 2014 at 9:36 PM

      • That being said, wealth can have a nurture effect in maximizing innate intelligence through nutrition, education, low stress, etc.

        i agree, and those who disagree don’t understand what the h^2 of iq means.

        according to the model, those at the very high end and at the very low end will tend to have iq scores significantly higher and lower respectively than their “genetic true scores”. so, for example, with an h^2 of .7, if one twin scores 160 the other will score so high < 2% of the time.

        jorge videla

        May 17, 2014 at 12:03 AM

      • @map

        the uk and the antipodes and ireland admit based on exams only. there may be an interview for medicine though. (THE reason why 40% of oxbridge is from “public” schools is that state comprehensives don’t prepare their students for those exams. when there were state grammar schools there was more mobility in the uk. believe it or not, the uk was more mobile in the 50s.)

        some campuses of the university of paris may be open, but not the ones you want to go to.

        canada has no elite unis like the us. some of its unis are very highly ranked, but saying you went to mcgill is NOT like saying you went to harvard.

        the us is different. it’s “wholistic admissions” is just another word for classism. a relative was asked to join the applied math faculty at stanford and he told them to go f— themselves precisely for this reason.

        jorge videla

        May 17, 2014 at 12:10 AM

    • “jorge,

      Anglosphere universities are ranked the best in the world, ahead of Germany, France and Japan. The Sorbonne, like most European unis, have open enrollment.

      The US is a major promoter of elitism.”

      Correction: The US has the best GRADUATE programs in the world, which, ironically enough, have few domestic students. Somebody with an undergrad degree from Germany, France, Canada, or China is way more likely to be better educated.

      Kant

      May 17, 2014 at 8:04 AM

      • Kant,

        The graduate programs are stuffed with foreigners because the returns to a science and technology education have dropped relative to the costs of going to grad schools. Thus, the smartest foreigners waste their time in grad schools and the smartest Americans are busy making a living.

        The level of technological development has really dropped because of all these foreigners in grad school. All they are doing is learning how to transfer technology.

        Map

        May 17, 2014 at 4:45 PM

      • “Kant,

        The graduate programs are stuffed with foreigners because the returns to a science and technology education have dropped relative to the costs of going to grad schools. Thus, the smartest foreigners waste their time in grad schools and the smartest Americans are busy making a living.

        The level of technological development has really dropped because of all these foreigners in grad school. All they are doing is learning how to transfer technology.”

        LOL. First, the cost of grad school is 0. In fact PhD pays you a stipend, current rates 30k-35k. Yes, there may be an opportunity cost, but that’s debatable, as with a PhD you have more career options. So your premise is wrong from the get go. Current stipends at MIT: http://gsc.mit.edu/programs-initiatives/col/

        Second, there’s a lot more competition for PhD positions. Americans prefer to go into particular tracks in industry or professional schools because there’s less competition there. For example, they prefer to go to med school and law school because there a huge barriers of entry against foreigners. Barriers of entry against the competition means that you can extract more benefits with the same work/smarts.

        Third, your comment about “All they are doing is learning how to transfer technology.” is bogus, not only because (1) and (2) but also because you can just see it: PhDs are there to generate research, not to learn technology. Sorry to say this, but your comments show how closed minded and ignorant you are.

        Zack

        May 18, 2014 at 9:43 PM

      • And how is it that foreigners can produce all of the brilliant science students but they cannnot produce institutions of higher learning? It is like arguing that the Chinese built the American railroads but not observing that there were plenty of Chinese in china but no Chinese railroads.

        Let’s face it. Most science and tech work is just a high-end form of factory work. The smartest Americans are right to avoid it.

        Map

        May 17, 2014 at 4:58 PM

      • “And how is it that foreigners can produce all of the brilliant science students but they cannnot produce institutions of higher learning? It is like arguing that the Chinese built the American railroads but not observing that there were plenty of Chinese in china but no Chinese railroads.

        Let’s face it. Most science and tech work is just a high-end form of factory work. The smartest Americans are right to avoid it.”

        LOL again. The top research universities are very international. In my group at MIT most of the young faculty was foreign born. This is true also of foreign top universities, such as Cambridge. The reason US and UK universities are considered the best is very simple: they are elitist. The top universities used to be in Germany and Franch, but they butchered them by socialist reforms, where they allowed basically everyone in. This dropped the level of the undergrads drastically. A similar thing happened to City College of NY as Lion noted a few month ago. The US/UK universities while they indoctrinate students in socialism, they themselves are very elitist and their entire US/UK system works on prestige. And btw, this is why they have to hire the best at faculty and PhD level, which means hiring foreign.

        On your comment that science and tech is factory work — well, most science and tech is more interesting than law and med school. Most lawyers learn the rule book (or case work) and apply the rule (find precedent). Med school is mostly memorization, nothing creative. And any advice to avoid science/tech is retarded. I don’t know a single lawyer who’s happy. Yes, plenty of people in academia/science/tech are happy, even if they may earn less money. A lot of people who have nothing special, no passion, no talent would choose law if they can, a path that’s easy because you know exactly what follows.

        PS And if you’re wondering about international students at undergrad, the ivy’s have quotas, which makes it much harder to get in as an international student. Basically the international student group is much more select than the main student population.

        Zack

        May 18, 2014 at 10:00 PM

      • it’s not true that Americans do not want to go into Science and Technology…if there were no foreign applicants there would still be 10 domestic applications for every spot in STEM graduate school.

        Chinese institutions are actually becoming better. Applications for graduate school from Chinese nationals to American graduate schools have dropped every year over the last decade…schools like Tsinghua and Peking U are becoming powerhouses in their own way.

        Busy making a living? Most recent graduates are underemployed. True, the elite of the elite at elite schools likely will forgo graduate school in favor of the good jobs that await them but the average US graduate is nonetheless doing nothing special and is likely less educated than their foreign counterparts.

        Kant

        May 18, 2014 at 11:58 AM

      • Map, moreover the upper middle class Americans are already connected to the source of money (ie, law&medicine) and they choose these fields where connections matter a lot so that they don’t get exposed to foreign competition. Thus, upper middle class Americans don’t go into tech, math or science. However, if you’re American without connections, you better do well in law school or do well in tech/math/science, ie, do well whatever you choose. But at the end of the day, for unconnected Americans, it’s how good you are and not the field you choose.

        Zack

        May 19, 2014 at 8:22 PM

  32. Remember this story, the high achieving inner city student who can’t cut it in college?
    http://www.latimes.com/local/la-me-c1-cal-freshmen-20130816-dto-htmlstory.html

    Guess what, here’s another

    http://www.nytimes.com/2014/05/18/magazine/who-gets-to-graduate.html?src=me&ref=general&_r=0

    Only the authors stretch in quite remarkable ways to conclude that failure is due to family income.

    Curle

    May 16, 2014 at 9:29 AM

    • I attribute people who thrive in STEM, as folks who are able to filter out all distractions and pleasure inducing sensations. High future time orientation is more important than having high IQ. Someone with ADHD and in the case of blacks, doing well in STEM is next to impossible.

      JS

      May 16, 2014 at 1:32 PM

    • It can be puzzling to understand as to why American blacks fail in school and African Immigrants thrive in it. But at the end, both demographic generally fail to demonstrate any breakthroughs from their schooling similar to that of Asians.

      JS

      May 16, 2014 at 1:37 PM

    • but shitty schools and black un-culture make it more difficult. it’s not just race and genes.

      jorge videla

      May 16, 2014 at 3:17 PM

      • Jorge,

        The shitty schools are a result of genetically determined black behavior that will always be a statistical fact in black groups, while criminally sociopathic behavior is not present in all individuals. These better behaved individuals suffer because of the genetically determined group behavior, but they are still a part of the group and the group cannot be given a pass due to the right side of the curve. Any inner city teacher or police officer will attest to the reality and pragmatism of my assertions. All of the money and resources ‘in the world’ have been and continue to be thrown at black schools, and nothing changes. The reality of black schools is that it is a game of glorified baby-sititng and policing, with social promotion being the saving grace of ‘black education’ that pushes everyone through to the finish line no matter what. Statistically, relatively genetically pure blacks can’t handle western education.

        Black un-culture is also a result of genes, but the western manifestation of those impulses is helped by the predatory pop-culture that serves to exaggerate their natural instincts into ‘Blacks 2.0’. All of the same impulses are there for blacks in Africa as well; they are just expressed without a western culture context.

        Frank

        May 16, 2014 at 6:06 PM

      • Frank, Then why do genetically pure – African Immigrants do better than Black Americans in higher education? Although I have to say black immigrants just work harder, yet they don’t make any breakthroughs in their education and careers.

        JS

        May 16, 2014 at 9:29 PM

      • I do not see why people keep defending STEM. The biggest tech companies aren’t focused on maximizing iQ. They are focused on importing cheap labor. That just goes to show you how much they regard pure intelligence in moving their companies.

        Anyone smart enough to do stem work should not waste their time.

        Map

        May 17, 2014 at 5:08 PM

      • “Then why do genetically pure – African Immigrants do better than Black Americans in higher education?”

        One reason is values coupled with parenting style. They’re hard core disciplinarians – corporal punishment, demanding ‘respect’, the whole nine yards. And a lot of it comes from Mom. ‘Might makes right’ is an arrangement that blacks inherently ‘get’.

        anon

        May 17, 2014 at 5:57 PM

    • I don’t understand why students give permission to the LA times and the NYT to write about their lives in this way. Quite frankly I’d be embarrassed for a NYT writer to say that i’m too dumb for Berkley. And what’s with that goofy photo?He can’t be all there.

      Josh

      May 18, 2014 at 7:06 AM

      • Actually, i understand now. Proles love getting their faces in the news, even if it’s an embarrassment.

        anon

        May 21, 2014 at 6:38 AM

    • “Some don’t know how to choose the right college, so they drift into a mediocre school that produces more dropouts than graduates”

      This doesn’t make any sense. If these kids are having difficulty in the elite schools, wouldn’t they find it easier in the less elite ones?

      Josh

      May 18, 2014 at 7:08 AM

      • Not necessarily. At an elite school you will hang out with people who place a high value on graduating from college. At a prole school, you will hang out with a bunch of losers many of whom will drop out and never complete college.

      • States schools are prole. Prole schools just has less resources and a weaker link to prestigious employers.

        JS

        May 18, 2014 at 4:57 PM

  33. Lion, did you see this?

    “Feds released hundreds of immigrant murderers, drunk drivers, sex-crimes convicts”

    http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2014/may/12/feds-released-hundreds-immigrant-murderers-drunken/

    It is worth a blog post, even though the article is a few days old.

    Dan

    May 16, 2014 at 2:26 PM

    • If I was a political donor, I would spend all of my money running ads to educate the public on this.

      Dan

      May 16, 2014 at 2:29 PM

  34. […] the ol’ Lion was observing studies showing how high IQ does NOT correlate with […]

  35. […] homeless all the way up to the highest levels of income.  For example, the Lion of the Blogosphere argues that IQ is a better predictor of poverty than it is of wealth.  However the linear extrapolation seems […]

  36. The preponderance of evidence suggests that average IQ increases by 8 points for every figure of income. People who make five figures a year (most Americans) have IQ’s around 100. Six figure people average IQ 108, seven figure people average IQ 116, etc:

    http://brainsize.wordpress.com/2014/05/18/iq-and-income/

    pumpkinperson

    May 17, 2014 at 9:46 PM

    • I’m just wondering: how would you call most athletes playing professional and making tens of millions of dollars just to retire and lose everything and then go bankrupt within 5 years of retirement. Brilliant (for making 8 figures annually) or just retarded (for losing 8 figures annually)?

      Zack

      May 19, 2014 at 1:06 AM

      • In the general U.S. population, IQ is much more related to income than it is to wealth, but you’d have to make some pretty dumb decisions to not be wealthy after making that much income, so my guess is that professional athlete IQ is way below the average for their income level.

        pumpkinperson

        May 19, 2014 at 11:45 AM

  37. In the 21st century plantation, aka post-Reagan America, high IQ means only one thing: that you will be a qualified slave, so you will get a better food and will get less beating. Only that.

    Wealth is not related of IQ, but to capital ownership. A qualified slave has nothing compared to the master who owns acres and acres of land and all the equipment necessary to process sugar.

    High IQ is only important because the master needs someone to supervise the illiterate masses of slaves, beat the slaves and repair the “engenho” (sugar processing equipment).

    brazilian

    May 18, 2014 at 8:08 PM

    • “Wealth is not related of IQ, but to capital ownership.”

      This feels like a comment from someone who needs to blame somebody for his failures.

      Just look at Forbes 400: only 10% of the people on the list in 1982 managed to stay on thru 2012. So, in 30 years the top 90% is all new. Explain that with your assertion!

      Zack

      May 18, 2014 at 10:22 PM

      • How many on the 1982 list were still alive in 2012?

        Glengarry

        May 19, 2014 at 4:51 AM

      • “How many on the 1982 list were still alive in 2012?”

        The statistic is by estate, not person. So 10% of estates in 1982 are still represented in 2012. Look it up.

        Zack

        May 19, 2014 at 8:33 PM

  38. Extroverts make more money than those good at practical math because it is much harder work. The reason you develop practical math skills is because you want to avoid the pain in the ass of pretending to find engaging the trivialities of 98% of social interaction.

    trey

    May 19, 2014 at 9:52 AM

  39. I’ve never come across a black person who had any savings in their account. It’s always living for the moment.

    I’ve known many-upon-many with savings a-plenty.

    nikcrit

    May 19, 2014 at 3:52 PM


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