Kanazawa defines American liberalism thusly:
"[O]ne may reasonably define liberalism (as opposed to conservatism) in the contemporary United States as the genuine concern for the welfare of genetically unrelated others and the willingness to contribute larger proportions of private resources for the welfare of such others. In the modern political and economic context, this willingness usually translates into paying higher proportions of individual incomes in taxes toward the government and its social welfare programs. Liberals usually support such social welfare programs and higher taxes to finance them, and conservatives usually oppose them. Defined as such, liberalism is evolutionarily novel. Humans (like other species) are evolutionarily designed to be altruistic toward their genetic kin, their friends and allies, and members of their deme (a group of intermarrying individuals) or ethnic group. They are not designed to be altruistic toward an indefinite number of complete strangers whom they are not likely ever to meet or interact with. This is largely because our ancestors lived in a small band of 50-150 genetically related individuals, and large cities and nations with thousands and millions of people are themselves evolutionarily novel."He then cites recent studies suggesting that liberals really have higher IQs than conservatives, and explains those results in terms of that evolutionary novelty of liberalism:
"[M]ore intelligent individuals are more likely than less intelligent individuals to espouse liberalism as a value. Analyses of large representative samples, from both the United States and the United Kingdom, confirm this prediction. In both countries, more intelligent children are more likely to grow up to be liberals than less intelligent children. For example, among the American sample, those who identify themselves as 'very liberal' in early adulthood have a mean childhood IQ of 106.4, whereas those who identify themselves as 'very conservative' in early adulthood have a mean childhood IQ of 94.8.... [T]he effect of childhood intelligence on adult political ideology is twice as large as the effect of either sex or race.Not to worry, though, conservatives: Kanazawa figures conservatives have more "common sense" that liberals, and comments that liberals often believe "silly" things. Meanwhile, lots of other folks have been weighing in on this subject. Lazar Stankov, visiting professor at Singapore's National Institute of Education, published "Conservatism and Cognitive Ability" earlier this year in (peer-reviewed journal) Intelligence:
"[Social c]onservatism and cognitive ability are negatively correlated ... At the individual level of analysis, conservatism scores correlate negatively with SAT, vocabulary, and analogy test scores. At the national level of analysis, conservatism scores correlate negatively with measures of education ... and performance on mathematics and reading assessments."But how does he define "conservative"?
"The Conservative syndrome describes a person who attaches particular importance to the respect of tradition, humility, devoutness and moderation; as well as to obedience, self-discipline and politeness, social order, family, and national security; and has a sense of belonging to and a pride in a group with which he or she identifies. A Conservative person also subscribes to conventional religious beliefs and accepts the mystical, including paranormal, experiences."Conservatives haven't been taking all this lying down.
"Bruce Charlton, a professor of theoretical medicine at the University of Buckingham, recently coined the term `clever sillies' to describe people who hold wacky political views seemingly because of--rather than despite--their high intelligence."Washington Times columnist James Robbins jibes, "Liberals Are Smarter Than Conservatives, Just Ask Them". And Jeffrey Folks of American Thinker resorts to questioning those IQ tests, in terms we have seen on TnT before in other contexts:
"Every teacher knows that one can make any group of kids look smart just by altering the content of the test. That is what's behind several studies purporting to show that liberals are smarter than conservatives."
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