Monday, May 19, 2014

"All Modern Geniuses Will Probably Be Oddballs"

This is from Bruce Charlton's blog, Intelligence, Personality and Genius.

It isn't surprising to me that the most intelligent and creative people are misfits. I am reminded of Dean Kamen, inventor of the Segway. He has a bunch of patents, always wear blue jeans, and lives on an island. His eccentricities are legion. His father was a editor for horror comics.

Since overwhelmingly men are the Weird and Strange Geniuses, I have for a long time thought they have to be treated especially well. In other words, mentors and not public school, high-paying jobs or else grants to follow their interests, raising them away from the get my drift.

"Due to the 150-200 year decline in general intelligence, there are not many potential geniuses born nowadays (not many in total, and only as in a tiny percentage of births) - furthermore, six to eight generations of accumulated deleterious genetic mutations (due to extremely low infant and child mortality rates) mean that almost-all modern geniuses will be oddballs: difficult personalities, significantly crazy, stubborn, aggressive, disobedient; socially maladaptive due to lacking in careerism, networking-abilities and constantly 'saying - or doing - the wrong thing'.

"This seems to be the case from the geniuses and near-geniuses I have known - hardly any of them are/ were good at building their careers or nurturing their success - quite the reverse: either they are utterly obscure and apparently happy to stay that way, or else they are always 'trailing their coats', picking fights and making powerful and influential enemies.

"This is another factor in the apparent disappearance of genius - intolerance of eccentricity, and the dominant tendency to write-off as insignificant and incompetent (or even dangerous) those who do not tick all the right boxes - many such people drop out from education early, or fail to get good jobs/ promotions/ publication/ prizes - and consequently have near zero influence.

"In such an environment, actual achievement means nothing. Literally nothing."

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Another factor is that most people hate the really intelligent man. Even guys who aren't geniuses but have some mental energy and efficiency are feared and resented for it. Particularly by women, but also by some malignantly jealous men.

Someone once said that the pain felt by a wit on encountering a dunce is 10 times less intense than the pain felt by the dunce on encountering the wit. A smart man is a giant turd in the dumber person's punch bowl.

And as Mencken once observed, the dumb become wolves when the smart are at their mercy.

But I grew up in the rural South, so maybe my view is skewed a little negative.