Monday, October 03, 2005

Thoughts about the general population

Having a scientific background and training leads me to apply some of my education to the thought processes of the general public. One of my favorite approaches to consider the distribution of intelligence among the public as a whole. I subscribe to the theory that the relative intelligence of all people is described by a bell shaped curve. The far right extreme, which number few, is populated by geniuses and the far left extreme is populated by moronic imbeciles. Dead center of this symmetric shape is the intelligence of the general population. The I.Q. of the central line of symmetry is 100 and it is the average I.Q. for our population. Now consider this: Half of the population has I.Q.'s greater than 100 therefore the other half has I.Q.'s less than 100. Now I know that it is not politically correct to state these facts; because, as we all know, the current trend in education is to call everyone equal and give superior grades to 60% of the class. As I recall from my days in high school and college, if 10% of the class received A's it was quite remarkable. Now, of course, most of the class receives A's because we don't want students to have hard feelings. Which leads me back to my original premise that half of the population has less than average intelligence. Since the bell shaped distribution has never been proven wrong by other than emotional outcry, this leaves us with a quandary. How do we rationalize the significant numbers of summa and magna cum laude graduates with the realities of the bell shaped curve. Well, guess what folks, the great arbitrator of intelligence is the market place. If you can't hack it, then all the "academic honors" are meaningless. Whoops, there is an area that is an exception to this rule and that is in politics. Now we have come full circle because politicians require votes and if they pander to the lower half of the bell shaped distribution and gain a few sycophants from the upper half they are elected.


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