Sex differences, ideology and IQ

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The Audacious Epigone has two interesting posts up right now. Conservative men more intelligent than conservative women; Liberal women more intelligent than liberal men and Politics and IQ; Conservative Democrats and liberal Republicans least intelligent. The titles are self-evident, but, I would add that with hindsight it might make sense that liberal Republicans aren’t too bright. If you’re a liberal Republican you are probably just in denial, or, confused and dull. When I think liberal Republican I think Tom Campbell or Chris Shays, but these may simply be elite examples who don’t reflect the fact that most ideological outliers in parties are just individuals who don’t think deeply. For example, someone who was born into a “Republican family,” and doesn’t reflect much about ideology and so continues to vote Republican despite being liberal. I don’t feel I need to explain conservative Democrats, as it seems to me that political exemplars of this class are generally duller than liberal or moderate Democrats.

Note: I know this is kind of a political post, but I’m going to be strict about not letting the comment thread degenerate immediately. So don’t get offended if I don’t let you through the mod-queue even if I normally do.

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9 Comments

  1. It’s clear now why I vote for liberal Republicans and conservative Democrats. As an Independent, the dullest of all, there is an affinity with fellow dullards.

  2. When I was a lad, our Member of Parliament was a “National Liberal Conservative” who was, he assured us all, a firm ally of the “Scottish Unionist Party”. Clear? It may have mattered more that he’d played rugby for Scotland.

  3. Of course, Trotsky and Goebbles were VERY high IQ, from all accounts, so there might be something to be said for voting for dullards, Old Guy. If we accept that all politics is essentially parasitic at best and destructive at worst, maybe dull politicians are the least worst of the lot, because they have their nefarious plans, like all the rest, but are too dumb to put them into effect. I mean, who wouldn’t rather live under Warren Harding than Lenin?

  4. I mean, who wouldn’t rather live under Warren Harding than Lenin? 
     
    this would be a more persuasive argument if the federal gov. was the size of, and had the responsibility of, the government during the 1920s.  
     
    granted, smart people are better at being evil, and are quicker at doing stupid things. but they are probably also more likely to have a minimum level of competency of making sure the machinery of government doesn’t explode in our faces. 
     
    the best combination are smart and moral people. then again, it can be argued herbert hoover fit that bill….

  5. I grew up in Berkeley, so I saw a lot of folks who were extremely orthodox. It was an orthodoxy of leftism – and they stuck to it! I see them as personally conservative: they stuck with the church they were raised in. This makes me skeptical when I see folks writing about ‘liberals’ and ‘conservatives’ based on political stance, party affiliation. There are folks in both camps who are looking at evidence and willing to be led by what they see, and folks who have the answer and don’t need to be confused by any contrary facts, thankyouverymuch.

  6. … but they are probably also more likely to have a minimum level of competency of making sure the machinery of government doesn’t explode in our faces… 
     
    If they have any such goal. I don’t see much evidence of that. Disaster and panic are good for those in power, as long as things don’t get so out of hand that they lose power.

  7. I have a post on a possible correlation between sub-components of IQ and political ideology.

  8. then again, it can be argued herbert hoover fit that bill…. Some think that Hoover was unfairly blamed for the Depression simply because he was in office at the time it began, while the real influence over economic factors comes several terms back. As ineffective as Hoover may have been, at least was too unpopular to make things worse.  
     
    Roosevelt made the economic problems worse, but he was very good at convincing people he was helping, and so the masses kept voting him back into office. 
     
    High IQ seems to alienate the majority of the populace, and as such it’s a liability when trying to gather popular support for a political campaign.

  9. High IQ seems to alienate the majority of the populace, and as such it’s a liability when trying to gather popular support for a political campaign. 
     
    Welcome to democracy…

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