IQ Is Real, And It Matters

I was just reading through this list of questions that Microsoft asks applicants and was struck by the thought that we, as a society, should stop pretending IQ doesn’t matter. I’m fairly versed in the perils of confusing causation and correlation, but here are a few things to consider. These aren’t throughly vetted, but rather spewed, so go easy on me.

  • People who are traditionally successful score well on IQ tests.

  • The Military’s ASVAB test is a veiled IQ test. They’re not just testing what you can do now; they’re testing what they think you can learn.

  • Microsoft and Google use questions like the ones above in order to test IQ. They aren’t allowed to give “IQ” tests because it’s illegal, which is lame.

  • The higher your tested IQ, the lower your chances of living in poverty, being incarcerated, etc.

So let’s not focus on what IQ is EXACTLY; that question will be debated for decades to come. And we all know that a high IQ isn’t a guarantee of “success” or happiness. Instead, let’s just agree that:

  1. it’s real

  2. it tends to make life easier for people

  3. ignoring it won’t make 1 or 2 any less true

I’d also argue that there’s a possibility that intelligent people are more able to disassociate themselves from their primal urges, which gives a person (and a society made up of such people) a vastly better chance at being better for humanity as a whole.

Yes, I realize that I’m likely to be flamed for this one, but realize that I’m not sure about any of this. These are thoughts I’ve had for quite some time now, and I wonder how many of you share them vs. think them silly.

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