I am all for intelligence. We must of course remember that it's not the most important thing.
I'm sure you know that, just making a comment since I have time here, on the weekend.
Education without values, as useful as it is, seems rather to make man a more clever devil.
- C.S. Lewis
There is a short story that I mention once in a while. An excerpt is below. It is set in the far distant
future. At that time genetic engineering could make everyone have an I.Q. of >200. But when that was
tried, there was no one to do those terrible jobs. What Mike Rowe calls Dirty Jobs, in his TV series.
Mike Rowe has had more jobs than you. In fact, Mike has had more jobs than anyone.
As the creator and executive producer of Discovery Channel’s Emmy-nominated series Dirty Jobs With Mike Rowe, Mike has spent years traveling the country, working as an apprentice on more than 200 jobs that most people would go out of their way to avoid. From coal mining to roustabouting, maggot farming to sheep castrating, Mike has worked in just about every industry and filmed the show in almost every state, celebrating the hard-working Americans who make civilized life possible for the rest of us.
"It's an absurdity. An Alpha-decanted, Alpha-conditioned man would go mad if he had to do Epsilon Semi-Moron work–go mad, or start smashing things up. Alphas can be completely socialized–but only on condition that you make them do Alpha work. Only an Epsilon can be expected to make Epsilon sacrifices, for the good reason that for him they aren't sacrifices; they're the line of least resistance. His conditioning has laid down rails along which he's got to run. He can't help himself; he's foredoomed. Even after decanting, he's still inside a bottle–an invisible bottle of infantile and embryonic fixations. Each one of us, of course," the Controller meditatively continued, "goes through life inside a bottle. But if we happen to be Alphas, our bottles are, relatively speaking, enormous. We should suffer acutely if we were confined in a narrower space. You cannot pour upper-caste champagne-surrogate into lower-caste bottles. It's obvious theoretically. But it has also been proved in actual practice. The result of the Cyprus experiment was convincing."
"What was that?" asked the Savage.
Mustapha Mond smiled. "Well, you can call it an experiment in rebottling if you like. It began in A.F. 473. The Controllers had the island of Cyprus cleared of all its existing inhabitants and re-colonized with a specially prepared batch of twenty-two thousand Alphas. All agricultural and industrial equipment was handed over to them and they were left to manage their own affairs. The result exactly fulfilled all the theoretical predictions. The land wasn't properly worked; there were strikes in all the factories; the laws were set at naught, orders disobeyed; all the people detailed for a spell of low-grade work were perpetually intriguing for high-grade jobs, and all the people with high-grade jobs were counter-intriguing at all costs to stay where they were. Within six years they were having a first-class civil war. When nineteen out of the twenty-two thousand had been killed, the survivors unanimously petitioned the World Controllers to resume the government of the island. Which they did. And that was the end of the only society of Alphas that the world has ever seen."
Link to Chapter One if you have more interest. Book takes an afternoon to read.( Maybe much less.)
It was Jean-Jacques Rousseau who said that education makes people evil. He noticed those who relied on feelings were good people, children for example, and those educated, usually more grown up, evil.
But intelligence has little to do with education.
Uneducated people are important, in fact, most people are made to be dumb. There is a reason for public High Schools in U.S. being so bad. The nation needs cheap labor and canon fodder. It has always been the case.
Someone engineering a country with 200p IQ people in there will create a loser country for sure.
As for not the most imporant thing - I don' know. For some it may be. And I don't mean that meaningless number, I just mean the ability solve problems. I've met many prodigies. Fat Tails on this forum for example is unbelievably intelligent. I am nowhere in his league.
It usually takes me longer to understand things, but I will eventually. Some kids I went to school with were just amazing. To outsmart the professor once or twice is one thing, but constantly correcting him and already knowing what he's saying is another.
I have a friend studying biology. His opinion on intelligence is that it is a measure on how fast you understand things.
Eventually, one might get quantum mechanics after 20 years of study, but it takes a genius to do that in one year. I am rather slow at everything.
As for markets, I don't think you need to be super intelligent, but some of it would not hurt. The best combination is probably uneducated and intelligent. I think education on subject trading can be quite harmful. There is little truth in books and on larger forums about trading. I'm sure those educated business arts type people are having hard time trading when they think that when GDP of a country is good, it's currency or whatever must strengthen, because if it doesn't, they are dead. Trading can be learned, probably must be learned. I used to think otherwise when I started. In some book I read: you can't learn trading, because humans are incapable of thinking in terms of many trades but concentrate on this one trade right now or something like that. And I started to learn some concepts and what one should call ideologies of how price moves. What a waste of time. All that's needed is actuall screen time, watching the price move for a year and that's maybe enough. How fast you learn that is intelligence, but one needs to understand, that it takes time to learn, more if less intelligent, less if more intelligent. But it does take time anyhow.
After a couple of years, one will eventually get it, if he learns.
Last edited by ReaM; May 12th, 2012 at 09:31 PM.
The following user says Thank You to ReaM for this post:
I came across this totally by accident. Sort of relates to what you've said, but maybe not.
At any rate, it is somewhat interesting, even though written decades ago.
The Theory of Interest by Irving Fisher
PART I, CHAPTER I
INCOME AND CAPITAL
Subjective, or Enjoyment, Income
Directors and managers providing income for thousands of people sometimes think of their corporation merely as a great money-making machine. In their eyes, its one purpose is to earn money dividends for the stock-holders, money interest for the bondholders, money wages and money salaries for the employees. What happens after these payments are made seems too private a matter to concern them. Yet that is the nub of the whole arrangement. It is only what we carry out of the market place into our homes and private lives which really counts. Money is of no use to us until it is spent. The ultimate wages are not paid in terms of money but in the enjoyments it buys. The dividend check becomes income in the ultimate sense only when we eat the food, wear the clothes, or ride in the automobile which are bought with the check.
Objective, or Real, Income (Our "Living")
Enjoyment income is a psychological entity and cannot be measured directly. We can approximate it indirectly, however, by going one step back of it to what is called real income. Real wages, and indeed real income in general,consist of those final physical events in the outer world which give us our inner enjoyments.
These outer events, such as the use of food, or clothes, etc., are like the resultant inner events in not being very easily measured. They occur largely in the privacy of the home; they are often difficult to express in any standard units. They have no common denominator. Even the individual who experiences them cannot weigh and measure them directly. All he can do is to measure the money he paid to get them.
Cost of Living, a Measure of Real Income
So, just as we went back of an individual's enjoyment income to his real income, we now go back of his real income, or his living, to his cost of living, the money measure of real income. You cannot measure in dollars either the inner event of your enjoyment while eating your dinner or the outer event of eating it, but you can find out definitely how much money that dinner cost you. In the same way, you cannot measure your enjoyment at moving picture theater, but you do know what you paid for your ticket; you cannot measure exactly what your house shelter is really worth to you, but you can tell how much you pay for your rent, or what is a fair equivalent for your rent if you happen to live in your own house. You cannot measure what it is worth to wear an evening suit, but you can find out what it costs to hire one, or a fair equivalent of its hire if, perchance, the suit belongs to you. Deducing such equivalents is an accountant's job.