Are people, generally speaking, smart or stupid?

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https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MzGnX-MbYE4

pomenitul, Sunday, 2 May 2021 22:24 (one month ago) link

Hiking yesterday which always makes me think bout stuff and this time I was thinking about how stupid people are ruining things for smart people. I'm sure not a new observation but applying in particular to COVID.
Smart ppl: hey there's this virus that will be bad for the world
Dumb ppl: lol no it's no worse than flu
Smart ppl: ok it's located king pretty bad. We've figured out that if everyone stays away from each other or at least wears a mask in public it should end its spread
Dumb ppl: lol no we ain't doing that, nice try Illuminati
Smart ppl: ok phew we worked very hard and actually created new type of vaccine. We just need everyone to get vaccinated and this whole thing will he over.
Dumb ppl: lol no we're not doing that either. Nice try, big pharma and big govt, we see u bull gates.

A True White Kid that can Jump (Granny Dainger), Monday, 3 May 2021 00:47 (one month ago) link

"Located king" lol spell check. "Looking like…"

A True White Kid that can Jump (Granny Dainger), Monday, 3 May 2021 00:48 (one month ago) link

When it comes to other people, you get what you’re looking for. People are a mix of contradictory impulses. If you want to see their kinder, more thoughtful side, approach them like you expect them to be kind, thoughtful people. If you go out there with a caustic, misanthropic attitude you’ll get that energy right back.

treeship., Monday, 3 May 2021 01:28 (one month ago) link

Covid skepticism is due to a growing lack of social trust which is caused by probably hundreds of factors. It’s not primarily about people having low IQ’s or whatever.

treeship., Monday, 3 May 2021 01:31 (one month ago) link

everyone except me

, Monday, 3 May 2021 01:56 (one month ago) link

Most smart people are stupid

longtime caller, first time listener (man alive), Monday, 3 May 2021 02:04 (one month ago) link

'Where there's a lot of intelligence, there's also a lot of stupidity' is a classic Romanian proverb and verifiably otm.

pomenitul, Monday, 3 May 2021 02:08 (one month ago) link

afaics intelligence is a trait discoverable in some thoughts or actions, but it is not a consistent or reliable trait among humans. this puts it in the same category as kindness or courage or most other traits we admire or despise in humanity. it's not like brown eyes or hammer toes.

sharpening the contraindications (Aimless), Monday, 3 May 2021 02:14 (one month ago) link

now do a poll with the same options but add "are people on ILX, generally speaking" to the topic

Draymond is "Mr Dumpy" (forksclovetofu), Monday, 3 May 2021 02:14 (one month ago) link

I figure we all have to be pretty stupid to spend as much of our lives here as we do

longtime caller, first time listener (man alive), Monday, 3 May 2021 02:34 (one month ago) link

Generally no. Usually typing

Evan, Monday, 3 May 2021 03:23 (one month ago) link

Tree ship otm.

Voted stupid, but ime most people are smart about some stuff, average about most stuff, and dumb about other stuff. The stuff varies from person to person.

Hey Bob (Scik Mouthy), Monday, 3 May 2021 05:30 (one month ago) link

Treeships theory x and theory y is, ime, not correct tbh

flagpost fucking (darraghmac), Monday, 3 May 2021 08:15 (one month ago) link

Many apparent differences in intelligence, especially in politics, can be explained instead by differences in values. "It isnot contrary to reason to prefer the destruction of the whole world to the scratching of my finger. It is not contrary to reason for me to chuse mytotal ruin, to prevent the least uneasiness of an Indian or person wholly unknown to me. "

I took drugs recently and why doesn't the UK? (ledge), Monday, 3 May 2021 11:36 (one month ago) link

I figure we all have to be pretty stupid to spend as much of our lives here as we do

― longtime caller, first time listener (man alive), Sunday, May 2, 2021 7:34 PM (yesterday) bookmarkflaglink

time i spend on this website is time spent not injecting drugs into my eyeballs or getting involved in multi-level marketing schemes

mellon collie and the infinite bradness (BradNelson), Monday, 3 May 2021 12:27 (one month ago) link

Not mutually exclusive ime.

pomenitul, Monday, 3 May 2021 12:32 (one month ago) link

I like to second screen ILX while doing my MLM scheme

longtime caller, first time listener (man alive), Monday, 3 May 2021 12:33 (one month ago) link

Let people be.

xyzzzz__, Monday, 3 May 2021 12:34 (one month ago) link

this poll would be better if the options were "yes" and "no"

A viking of frowns, (Camaraderie at Arms Length), Monday, 3 May 2021 12:50 (one month ago) link

I can only get my head around one marketing level at a time but I'm doing my best

Evan, Monday, 3 May 2021 13:16 (one month ago) link

More serious answer: people mean a lot of different things when they say "intelligent" and I don't think there is such a thing as "general" intelligence. There are people who are amazing at theoretical math who would be the absolute worst person to run a business, or hold government office, or even give you good directions to the post office. There are people who can speak captivatingly to a crowd about french literature and don't understand simple percentages. There are people who can see through anyone's bullshit but can't make heads or tails out of Shakespeare. There are people with encyclopedic knowledge and understanding of plumbing who couldn't make a plant grow, and encyclopedic gardeners who couldn't put up a shelf.

Also, ime, people who consider "intelligence" to be a general trait are often obnoxious, arrogant, and prone to overestimate their own "intelligence," often with bad consequences.

longtime caller, first time listener (man alive), Monday, 3 May 2021 13:33 (one month ago) link

There are also highly "intelligent" people who believe things that seem "stupid," -- PhD anti-vaxxers etc. No one's "intelligence" is free from their emotions. Relative who was one of the most "intelligent" people I knew (spoke 6 languages, amazingly well-read, brilliant conversationalist) also believed in healing crystals and stuff like that.

longtime caller, first time listener (man alive), Monday, 3 May 2021 13:36 (one month ago) link

Being good at calculation and some tasks of cognition is no defense from believing weird/dumb/wrong things. Belief formation and transmission is a complicated as fuck topic that most popular discourse doesn’t seem to have any understanding of

Glower, Disruption & Pies (kingfish), Monday, 3 May 2021 14:28 (one month ago) link

Education/pedigree/cultural capital also often conflated with intelligence, especially by the holder. Be born to two college-educated parents with good incomes, attend a high school where 90% of people go to college, get good grades, go to Cornell and graduate with a 3.2 avg and a poli-sci degree or something, not the hardest life outcome to achieve, does not indicate exceptional intelligence.

longtime caller, first time listener (man alive), Monday, 3 May 2021 14:56 (one month ago) link

One of the posts above raised a question for me - are there hyper-rationalists who consider any kind of aesthetic engagement a literal delusion? People who would consider listening to a record or reading a novel not just a waste of time, but a failure of intelligence comparable to belief in religion or superstition?

Halfway there but for you, Monday, 3 May 2021 15:04 (one month ago) link

Have you met ILX

You Can't Have the Woogie Without a Little Boogie (Old Lunch), Monday, 3 May 2021 15:07 (one month ago) link

I think I understand what you're getting at and I feel like I have come across people that are close to that once or twice in my life.

But you also raise a broader point about how the lines between "rational" beliefs or activities and pure "aesthetic engagements" can be blurred for some intelligent people, even deliberately at times. Many rational people also partake in religion while understanding that, on the most literal level, it's not rational and not "true" in a purely rational sense. I always thought it was possible that my relative who liked healing crystals understood on some level that it was an emotional-aesthetic thing that was not "rational" but she never let on. I guess it only becomes problematic where it can harm others.

longtime caller, first time listener (man alive), Monday, 3 May 2021 15:10 (one month ago) link

I have no issue with people engaging with the world irrationally to the extent that their engagement doesn't adversely affect the lives or well being of others. Which is to say that I have a big fucking issue with a lot of the people who are currently engaging with the world irrationally.

You Can't Have the Woogie Without a Little Boogie (Old Lunch), Monday, 3 May 2021 15:12 (one month ago) link

Yes, man alive, not to question your judgement of your relative, but what is the difference between getting a healing feeling from a crystal, and from a piece of music or a painting?

Halfway there but for you, Monday, 3 May 2021 15:15 (one month ago) link

Like it's cool to believe in witchcraft until you start burning people in the town square.

You Can't Have the Woogie Without a Little Boogie (Old Lunch), Monday, 3 May 2021 15:16 (one month ago) link

the trick is to not assume someone who has an Esq after their name or a Dr before their name is an expert on every topic.

Filibuster Poindexter (Neanderthal), Monday, 3 May 2021 15:19 (one month ago) link

Did this thread last year

Outcome was that ilx gets v funny about calling stupidity a thing in a specific thread like this despite being fairly onside with the essential concept and using the term and related terms and concepts in every other thread

Found it a little....forced...meself tbh

Ledges post about values is interesting.

flagpost fucking (darraghmac), Monday, 3 May 2021 15:23 (one month ago) link

Like it's cool to believe in witchcraft until you start burning people in the town square.

Don't be so sectarian. Murderous pyromaniacs might be remarkably intelligent in other, subtle ways you're not accounting for.

pomenitul, Monday, 3 May 2021 15:25 (one month ago) link

religion might be true on a more or less literal level, who knows

treeship., Monday, 3 May 2021 15:40 (one month ago) link

i've been reaing a borges collection called "on mysticism" that includes an interesting introduction written by borges' widow. she says that the agnostic is in some ways closer to god than either the believer or the atheist. ambivalence on the big question isn't disinterest -- or doesn't have to be -- it's really openness to the sublime, with its terrors and wonders, and no narrative to fix it in place and make it comprehensible. this seems relevant here, as we struggle to draw a line between "rational" and "irrational" people.

treeship., Monday, 3 May 2021 15:42 (one month ago) link

people are generally dumb regardless of where they land in terms of IQ or whatever other scale of intelligence one might use

Mr. Cacciatore (Moodles), Monday, 3 May 2021 15:47 (one month ago) link

people are extremely limited in what they can learn on their own. really, when we talk about intelligence as it relates to covid, etc, the "smart" people are just the ones who trust the same sources that we, ilxors, trust.

treeship., Monday, 3 May 2021 15:48 (one month ago) link

otm

longtime caller, first time listener (man alive), Monday, 3 May 2021 15:52 (one month ago) link

+1

Joe Bombin (milo z), Monday, 3 May 2021 15:54 (one month ago) link

One of the posts above raised a question for me - are there hyper-rationalists who consider any kind of aesthetic engagement a literal delusion? People who would consider listening to a record or reading a novel not just a waste of time, but a failure of intelligence comparable to belief in religion or superstition?

― Halfway there but for you, Monday, 3 May 2021 15:04 (nine minutes ago) link

Some pragmatists need to validate their superiority constantly, and probably only get to an extreme like that in goalpost-moving arms races with other pragmatists to be crowned #1 most pragmatic. They see themselves as sober minded and above therefore unburdened by any time wasting vices. Icy badasses don't have time for bullshit like "leisure activities", of course.

Evan, Monday, 3 May 2021 15:59 (one month ago) link

really, when we talk about intelligence as it relates to covid, etc, the "smart" people are just the ones who trust the same sources that we, ilxors, trust.

The ability to distinguish between trustworthy and untrustworthy sources isn't a form of intelligence?

pomenitul, Monday, 3 May 2021 16:01 (one month ago) link

Was just gonna say same thing, pom. Tho I would said aspect of intelligence rather than form of it. Whichever.

A True White Kid that can Jump (Granny Dainger), Monday, 3 May 2021 16:05 (one month ago) link

Like if you can't see that someone like Trump is not a "trustworthy source", you're fucking dumb

A True White Kid that can Jump (Granny Dainger), Monday, 3 May 2021 16:06 (one month ago) link

I think there is a lack of trust in institutions that has myriad causes—some rational, some idiotic—that is showing up as covid skepticism. It’s not, at bottom, intelligence that leads someone to believe the vaccine safety studies or not.

treeship., Monday, 3 May 2021 16:06 (one month ago) link

There isn't necessarily consensus among "trustworthy" sources on a lot of COVID points though. It's still a novel virus and a novel situation, and there's a lot we don't really know in terms of what factors have made the most difference in cases, deaths, etc, why COVID peaks at certain times in certain places. I think there's probably consensus that vaccines work and are slowing death, hospitalization, infection and transmission wherever they are being implemented on a wide scale. Beyond that I think things are much murkier, and the tendency to assert scientific certainty in its absence, based on which epidemiologist we follow on twitter or w/e, is itself irrational.

longtime caller, first time listener (man alive), Monday, 3 May 2021 16:06 (one month ago) link

Most people aren’t qualified to independently review the trials for instance. That isn’t what i did. I trusted that everything was on the up and up. But what lie behind that wasn’t rational necessarily. I desperately wanted an end to the pandemic. I want to be a person who believes in science and institutions, even though I know pharmaceutical companies have acted in a corrupt way in the past. Idk. My taking the vaccine was an expression of faith in the system, not a rational decision necessarily.

treeship., Monday, 3 May 2021 16:10 (one month ago) link

You can reasonably decide to put your trust in medical institutions because, on balance, they've done more good than harm.

pomenitul, Monday, 3 May 2021 16:13 (one month ago) link

otm again - there is absolutely an emotional component to being willing to rush to take the vaccine just like there is to being hesitant to take the vaccine -- as you say, I desperately wanted the pandemic to end, and I was almost euphoric that there seemed to be an "easy way out" relatively. And having "faith in the system" is, in itself, comforting. That doesn't mean I'm 100% confident it's 100% safe or 100% as good as it's made out to be. There was calculated risk taking in there too, but the emotional component is there. Don't know if I can say it was a "rational decision" *or* an "emotional decision," - I don't think I believe in that binary.

longtime caller, first time listener (man alive), Monday, 3 May 2021 16:14 (one month ago) link

(xp to treesh)

longtime caller, first time listener (man alive), Monday, 3 May 2021 16:14 (one month ago) link

Yeah you dont get to start from scratch as if you havent been sermoning from the mount the past several months but its doable

flagpost fucking (darraghmac), Monday, 3 May 2021 18:38 (one month ago) link

Hi left, lets start over

flagpost fucking (darraghmac), Monday, 3 May 2021 18:38 (one month ago) link

it's a paradox, the more sincere and honest and open and earnest I try to be the more I piss people off. clearly I am a lost cause as an ilxor

Left, Monday, 3 May 2021 18:41 (one month ago) link

that's how this website works believe me

treeship., Monday, 3 May 2021 18:42 (one month ago) link

but still, you keep coming back -- as do i, as does LJ -- and so that tells you something about yourself and what motivates you. something complicated, probably, requiring some tarot cards.

treeship., Monday, 3 May 2021 18:43 (one month ago) link

Sincere open honest and earnest isnt generous, humorous, engaged or interested which all tend to be decent starting points to discuss things with people ime

Now im not everybodys cup of tea neither granted

flagpost fucking (darraghmac), Monday, 3 May 2021 18:45 (one month ago) link

if the ilxor covertly known as LJ and currently using the dn 'imago', could rehabilitate himself as an ilxor, no one's case is hopeless.

sharpening the contraindications (Aimless), Monday, 3 May 2021 18:45 (one month ago) link

Lots of smart people are pretty dumb. Each finds a different way to be dumb. It's a vast tapestry.

Loads of people (myself included!) got called "gifted and talented" in childhood. But it almost never manifested in a way that made us happier, better-functioning, or less inclined to make terrible life decisions. I would gladly trade 90% of that attention for marginally better life skills.

I don't love the framing of "emotional intelligence" or "multiple intelligences" - much of which is clearly designed to flatter more than to describe. But it does seem like it's not a single sliding scale of smart > stupid. I'm good at some stuff. I suck at some stuff. Same is true of everybody.

Finally, to the ableism point: I have some Feelz(TM) here. My 10-year-old son is pretty seriously intellectually disabled. He's mostly nonverbal and is unlikely to ever talk, write, do math, or read at grade level. At some point he might be able to bag groceries. And I love him utterly because he is my son. He's affectionate, funny, and pleasant to be around. Smart/stupid just doesn't really apply, he's himself and when I'm with him, that's what matters.

Frumious Cumberbatch (Ye Mad Puffin), Monday, 3 May 2021 18:46 (one month ago) link

My dad used to call me "severely gifted".

Halfway there but for you, Monday, 3 May 2021 18:47 (one month ago) link

Conflating intelligence with worth is why this is a radioactive topic. These things need to be disentangled, utterly so.

treeship., Monday, 3 May 2021 18:48 (one month ago) link

xp ye mad puffin

treeship., Monday, 3 May 2021 18:49 (one month ago) link

I think in pretty much every context where I employ 'stupid' as a pejorative I almost always actually mean 'lazy'. So something more akin to 'Clearly you have an intellectual capacity roughly commensurate with the task you're undertaking so the fact that it's become a deeply flawed (if not failed) undertaking seems to be more about your unwillingness to expend effort than your ability, idiot.'

You Can't Have the Woogie Without a Little Boogie (Old Lunch), Monday, 3 May 2021 18:52 (one month ago) link

OL brings the truth bomb

sharpening the contraindications (Aimless), Monday, 3 May 2021 18:55 (one month ago) link

xpost (Like, generally as applied to work-related concerns, if that wasn't obvious.)

You Can't Have the Woogie Without a Little Boogie (Old Lunch), Monday, 3 May 2021 18:55 (one month ago) link

I don't seem to be able to do that. everything is just read as trolling at this point


Lol it’s not read as trolling it’s just read as “acting out” or whatever

brimstead, Monday, 3 May 2021 19:21 (one month ago) link

I’ve done it too

brimstead, Monday, 3 May 2021 19:21 (one month ago) link

you seems genuinely full of bad feelings for people and that’s OK but it’s not trolling

brimstead, Monday, 3 May 2021 19:22 (one month ago) link

I am interested in learning more about Left.

Left, your rigidity is anathema to me, it just is, but I trust that it’s sincere. What led you to this militant outlook?

treeship., Tuesday, 4 May 2021 00:55 (one month ago) link

I felt genuine kinship with you when you talked about being misinterpreted on ilx. I know i sound dickish now but i don’t mean to.

treeship., Tuesday, 4 May 2021 00:56 (one month ago) link

regarding earlier posts: I love the iconography of tarot, just as art. I love all of the tarot traditions - early Italian, Marseilles, Etteilla, Rider-Waite-Smith, Thoth, and the Celtic Wheel of the Year. The confluence of the Kabbalah, the Tree of Life, astrology, numerology, the Waite-Smith tradition, Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn, and especially colour symbolism in the images of the Thoth tarot is very deep and is fascinating

Dan S, Tuesday, 4 May 2021 01:55 (one month ago) link

I don't read you as a troll, Left, there just tends to be a pattern in your posts of saying "this artist/person/opinion is shit" with an added implication of "and you're morally suspect for engaging with them/their work." And I don't assume that that's your intention, but it doesn't really contribute to a great vibe on a board that spends of lot of time talking about music and movies and art made by less than morally upright people, and where politics discussions are already well aware of how terrible everything is and mainly divided about the relative merits of purity and incrementalism. I think your posts about music that you enjoy are good!

JoeStork, Tuesday, 4 May 2021 02:17 (one month ago) link

My mum always says stupid is as stupid does

Pinefox reviews Reviews (wins), Tuesday, 4 May 2021 08:56 (one month ago) link

She’s a fucking dimwit though

Pinefox reviews Reviews (wins), Tuesday, 4 May 2021 08:56 (one month ago) link

I like my mum's daft mixed metaphors in an Irish accent that don't make any sense - there is some wisdom in there somewhere!

calzino, Tuesday, 4 May 2021 09:04 (one month ago) link

She once said, when I was starting a bookie job: "when you are dealing with money, don't even let your left hand know what your right hand is doing"

calzino, Tuesday, 4 May 2021 09:09 (one month ago) link

I am generally speaking smart because I realized this thread was gonna go into tl;dr territory 100 posts ago

Draymond is "Mr Dumpy" (forksclovetofu), Tuesday, 4 May 2021 15:41 (one month ago) link

I can generally figure things out but I also do dumb shit all the time: the Duality of Man

Glower, Disruption & Pies (kingfish), Tuesday, 4 May 2021 16:04 (one month ago) link

She once said, when I was starting a bookie job: "when you are dealing with money, don't even let your left hand know what your right hand is doing"

This is funny to me because back when I worked construction in the summers, that last part was the foreman's favorite insult for people he perceived as dumb. I.e. "that new laborer is so stupid his left hand don't know what his right is doing".

soaring skrrrtpeggios (jon /via/ chi 2.0), Tuesday, 4 May 2021 16:38 (one month ago) link

when you are dealing with money, don't even let your left hand know what your right hand is doing

Her use of it makes sense if we go by this definition:

https://www.phrases.org.uk/meanings/225650.html

pomenitul, Tuesday, 4 May 2021 16:42 (one month ago) link

Oh, it's from the Bible.

Authoritarian Steaks (Tom D.), Tuesday, 4 May 2021 17:14 (one month ago) link

where does “overthinking” come into play?

brimstead, Tuesday, 4 May 2021 21:44 (one month ago) link

Also the Bible

Filibuster Poindexter (Neanderthal), Tuesday, 4 May 2021 21:51 (one month ago) link

one month passes...

Automatic thread bump. This poll is closing tomorrow.

System, Thursday, 10 June 2021 00:01 (two weeks ago) link

Automatic thread bump. This poll's results are now in.

System, Friday, 11 June 2021 00:01 (two weeks ago) link

67 vs 6 imo

Eschew things thirty two times before swallowing them (darraghmac), Friday, 11 June 2021 00:06 (two weeks ago) link


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