Human Intelligence: News and Commentary
I like to poke around the internet to see what mind-related
research has been done recently. Here are a few items I found.
I offer my own thoughts and opinions at the end of each short
report. Feel free to send me your angry emails for my reporting
on the connections between intelligence and maternal feelings,
atheism, and political affiliation. But be fair and complain
about my comments, not about the research. I'm just reporting
what I find.
Intelligence Lessens Maternal Urges
controversial study about intelligence and maternal feelings
it was discovered that smarter women are less likely to want
to have children. In fact, Satoshi Kanazawa, a researcher at
the London School of Economics found that for every 15 extra
points a woman had on an IQ test, she was about 25% less likely
to want babies. It could be that it is a matter of practicality;
that higher intelligence makes it easier to understand the true
cost (in money, time and work) of having children. Then there
is another hypothesis. There is some
evidence of a correlation between higher intelligence and
ego development. Maybe a smart man or woman is more likely to
have a big ego that doesn't make room for others in their lives.
My wife and I being childless by choice, I'm not thrilled by
that hypothesis, but who knows?
You High IQ Might Not Make You Rich
Jay Zagorsky, an economist at Ohio State University's Center
for Human Resource Research, looked at the relationship between
intelligence and wealth. What were the results
of his study? There is no relationship. Previous studies
found that income is generally correlated with intelligence.
This study also found that to be true, showing an increase of
$6,000 to $18,000 per year for those with an IQ over 130 versus
those with an average IQ (100). However, income does not necessarily
translate into wealth.
Geniuses, it seems, are just as likely to run into debt problems,
or to miss payments on mortgages. They may make more money, but
they don't have more net worth to show for it. The study used
survey information from over 7,000 respondents born between 1957
and 1964. The bottom line was that there was no correlation found
between IQ and wealth. As I've said before, mind power isn't
just about having intelligence. It is also about knowing how
to use it.
Being Smart May Help You Live Longer
British study about IQ and longevity it was found that intelligence
does correlate with a longer life. Children who had higher intelligence
scores on tests given for the Scottish Mental Survey of 1932
were "significantly more likely to survive to age 76."
The exact causes are not clear, but I would guess that higher
income (see the item above) helps with better health care and
a healthier diet.
Are Liberals and Atheists Smarter?
The answer is yes according to Satoshi Kanazawa, a researcher
at the London School of Economics and Political Science. At least
that's what's shown by his
study and data from the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent
Health. The latter data shows that young adults who call
themselves "very liberal" had an average IQ of 106
during adolescence. And those who say they are "very conservative?"
During adolescence they had an average IQ of 95.
Kanazawa also found a positive correlation between higher
IQ and atheism for men and women, and a correlation between higher
IQ and a preference for sexual exclusivity in men (but not women).
I don't have any smart remarks for this one, and in any case
I have probably pissed off enough readers just by reporting on
Smarter People Might Have More Mental Illness
There is some evidence that more psychological problems come
with more intelligence. One study found that kids
who do well in school are more likely to have bipolar disorder.
Almost four times as likely in fact. Last year a study
on intelligence and worrying found that people with higher
IQ scores worried more and that those who had generalized anxiety
disorder tended to have higher intelligence.
Of course there have been anecdotal stories forever about
depressed geniuses. Maybe some of those were based on people
who thought they were geniuses and were depressed because they
really weren't? Or maybe ignorance really can be bliss, and it's
just not as likely in people with higher intelligence.