Quotes of the day

posted at 10:30 pm on February 26, 2010 by Allahpundit

“Evolutionary psychologist Satoshi Kanazawa at the the London School of Economics and Political Science correlated data on these behaviors with IQ from a large national U.S. sample and found that, on average, people who identified as liberal and atheist had higher IQs. This applied also to sexual exclusivity in men, but not in women. The findings will be published in the March 2010 issue of Social Psychology Quarterly…

“‘The adoption of some evolutionarily novel ideas makes some sense in terms of moving the species forward,’ said George Washington University leadership professor James Bailey, who was not involved in the study. ‘It also makes perfect sense that more intelligent people — people with, sort of, more intellectual firepower — are likely to be the ones to do that.’

“Bailey also said that these preferences may stem from a desire to show superiority or elitism, which also has to do with IQ. In fact, aligning oneself with ‘unconventional’ philosophies such as liberalism or atheism may be ‘ways to communicate to everyone that you’re pretty smart,’ he said…

“Religion, the current theory goes, did not help people survive or reproduce necessarily, but goes along the lines of helping people to be paranoid, Kanazawa said. Assuming that, for example, a noise in the distance is a signal of a threat helped early humans to prepare in case of danger.”

“The jury may be out on whether conservatives are less intelligent than liberals, but there’s evidence that they may be physically stronger. Last year, the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences published a fascinating paper by Aaron Sell, John Tooby and Leda Cosmides of the Center for Evolutionary Psychology at the University of California, Santa Barbara. The authors measured the strength of 343 students using weight-lifting machines at a gym. The students also completed questionnaires designed to measure, among other things, their proneness to anger, their history of fighting and their fondness for aggression as a way to solve both individual and geopolitical problems.

“Sell, Tooby and Cosmides found that men (but not women) with the most physical strength were also the most likely to feel entitled to good treatment, anger easily, view themselves as successful in winning conflicts and believe in physical force as a tool for resolving interpersonal and international conflicts. Women who thought of themselves as pretty showed the same pattern of greater aggression. All of which means that if you are a liberal who believes you’re smarter than conservatives, you probably shouldn’t bring that up around them. You might not like them when they’re angry.”

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