31 July 2008

What they didn't teach you in school

People often claim that I am above average in intelligence, and in the past various academic tests of this theory have supported that assumption. (For one, I do not believe it.) Yet I wonder how relevant "IQ" as a score is to actual life performance. I mean, at least from personal experience I don't see how having high intelligence (if that is actually true) has provided much benefit for me. I have never felt more than completely ignorant and clueless when going about my affairs in society. Either my actual intelligence is far, far lower than what is presumed (quite likely) or raw intelligence, in and of itself, is quite divorced from what actually makes a person successful.

I believe that effort and drive are the key factors. (Of course I do not possess either of these, so that explains much.) A person may have average innate intelligence, but if that person applies his efforts to learning all about a certain subject and mastering it, he will generally be an expert in that topic. I see no advantage to this process if that person has an IQ of 120 as opposed to 95.  

So I am not buying this crap about how folks in the ghetto are just too stupid and too bedraggled to better themselves. If they are stupid, that is a willfully entered fate of which they will have to bear the consequences. Education is important to the extent that basic literacy and numeracy skills are fundamental to success, but even a person who knows nothing else but the basics can be a success if he actively applies his mind.

Of course the purveyors of credentialism would deny this with a passion, lest it negatively affect their mounts of entrenched privilege. It would seem, however, that a university education is increasingly irrelevant to actual employment demands, and even serves to make a person less intelligent by indoctrinating him in a statist leaning worldview completely inimical to how the world actually works.

After all, the grate (sic) minds at the Fed, in Congress, and even the Leader himself are all highly trained products of university. See how wonderfully they "manage" the economy!

What I am saying is that the "best" minds are often full of shit, and the average mind manages to contemplate far more than it is given credit for.

Why, then, do intelligent people fail? Sometimes they buy into a worldview and a mindset, passed down by their teachers, that is unworkable. Sometimes they believe that because they are so gifted, they don't have to expend the effort since they are "special." Sometimes they are just fucking lazy, worthless pieces of human refuse.

Certainly, not all intelligent people are walking failures, and not all 'average' people have what it takes to enter the upper middle class. But just because a person has letters behind his name does not automatically make him more valuable to society.

So this leads me to Urban Prairie Schooner's First True Maxim of Life:

A person's value to the world is measured by his/her net contribution to society.

This is not the same as economic value or net worth, or potential value. This bears directly on what you actively put into life, and if that enriches the world around you.

Not all people are equal. Human life is intrinsically valuable, but some folks are more deserving to be walking this earth than others, because they provide a valued service to others, are loved and respected by many, and contribute to overall social prosperity and cohesion. The looter class, well...their worth may be the sum value of the biological tissues that comprise their bodies, for whatever that's worth.

That is not a call for a second holocaust. That is just a fact of life.

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