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Why is society biased against intelligence?

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posted on Jul, 14 2004 @ 08:33 PM
you guys make so many excellent points. i too have felt the sting of being intellegent. when there is a room full of people laughing and having a good time and you think that their conversation is completely retarded it is hard to be friendly with them. i am the nicest guy in the world, when taken the time to get to know me that is. it goes against my will and my honor to lie and pretend i am having a good time when in fact a room full of seemingly cool people bore me to death. perhaps the cooler you are the dumber u get? either way as soon as a party is started i somehow seem to bring the whole vibe down. people will turn on you as soon as they realize you are above them. people these days have little regard for others feelings. sure i am rude in a playful fashion and i will belittle others when they ask for it and sure i make people feel dumb all the time. i do these things simply to show them where they stand and out of the goodness of my heart i try to help them grow as indviuals. but of course mob mentality never sees it this way. they see me as a a$$ hole and proceed to hate me. sometimes i wonder why i even bother with humans. then i read these forums and realize there are still some sane people out there.

posted on Jul, 15 2004 @ 12:46 PM
1) Perhaps Evolution has a bias about intelligence. I speculate that evolution has a bias to produce x% of very intelligent people, y% of intelligent people, z% of average intelligence and k% of unintelligent people. This all with a heavier weighting towards the mid to low intelligence. It would be derived from the optimal balance for a healthy functional society.

2) Additionally the reason anyone who is different from the group is singled out is based on a herd mentality, which is not to say it is necessarily bad. The psychological derision of a sensitive/intelligent person gets much more of a rise, response than deriding someone who is dull witted. It might be possible to have an insensitive intelligent person, but from a natural standpoint they would be rare i think. Also having a very intelligent person who was insesitive could be very dangerous. Imagine someone who could create say an atom bomb and didn't have any empathy for other people. Get my drift?

3) Another thought, there is sort of an interplay between being different and having a unique(potentially insightful) perspective on things. People who fit in perhaps too well take things for granted and their minds tend to slack off. Someone who is often edged/egged tends to have their mind constantly stimulated.

4) Overfed, highfat diets tend to create inactivity, and a low energy person is likely to have low energy thinking.

posted on Jul, 15 2004 @ 12:49 PM
Not biased against them if they did just that! How reliable has it been in the past 10+ years??

How many times do they say that they've messed up?? Exactly...
Or is that just a lie to fool us citizens??

They do this double triple double reverse psychology on citizens, people don't know what ot believe, it's like the boy who cried wolf, why should we believe in them??

I'm personally sick of being treated like an idiot by them, i'm tired of them witholding information from us unless it's really really important that they do that in the name of homeland security, but they will use the homeland security excuse for almost everything...

It's bull#... That's why.

posted on Jul, 15 2004 @ 01:35 PM
In 19th century America, most midwestern towns of any size had a "Lyceum," a public hall devoted to oratory and discourse, where visiting preachers and politicians were invited to hold forth, both to entertain and inform the public as to questions of the day.

Many agricultural improvements, as well as new inventions, were first demonstrated in local lyceums across the nation. At the time it was believed that this led to a serious competitive edge economically and educationally against other nations....


That spirit is, of course, totally dead; not only in the States, but throughout Western Civilization.

Here are some reasons why.

1. Most people are relatively safe, and know that they will not be allowed to starve. There is no real competition for the necessities of life, just the luxuries.

2. The public goes out of its way to destroy the last vestiges of meritocracy in Western civilization. Suing to gain admittance to college, etc. A college degree has become a function of social class rather than of individual merit, especially in ivy league schools.

3. The public is easier to manipulate when they are not used to logical thought. Pompey's dictum was "Bread and Circuses."

4. Thorstein Veblen's seminal "theory of the liesure class" points out that acquiring your fortune by effort implies that it is transitory. Unearned wealth always carries more status, because it suggests membership in an elite, rather than individual prowess.

5. Western Civilization is in decline along the same route as Rome was in the 4th century. The fact that people get rich without applying themselves is a serious disencentive to hard work. You don't get rich by careful study of the stock market, you get rich by blind fate: you win the lottery, or you win a lawsuit.

10 things I'd to to fix things:

1. Outlaw the lottery.

2. Universities divest themselves of intramural team sports programs, and make merit the sole condition of entrance.

3. Standardized exams are the sole prerequisite for graduating high school.

4. End intramural high school team sports.

5. Set up major college scholarship funds based on chess, music, and science competitions.

6. Capital Gains are treated like every other form of income, and taxed at the exact same rate. (This would take a coup d'etat)

5. Universal manditory military/police auxilliary service for all 18 year olds.

6. Admission to officer training schools in the military to be based solely on performance and acheivement scores. No more letters from your senator.

7. Except for real estate, teat all inheritance as direct income, and remove the $200,000 tax-free base with respect to inheritance taxes. This would keep family farms intact, but stress the need for income independant of inherited stocks and patents. such a move might even change the Hilton Sisters' attitude!

8. Make proficiency in a second language a prerequisite for receiving ANY college scholarships.

9. Make all wellfare dependent upon some form of effort from the recipient (work. This would take a SECOND coup d'etat!)

10. Sentence prisoners to days of labor instead of days in prison. They can take any day off from their work for health or religious reasons, but they won't be making progress on their sentence on those days either.


Many of these proposals would not address intellectualism directly, but would definitely impact the way people understand being a productive member of society, and of owing a debt to society in exchange for security and opportunity.

Those values are lost in the West. We are lost if we fail to re-acquire them.

posted on Jul, 15 2004 @ 01:57 PM
I like your plan... a lot!

However, I wouldn't remove sports from high schools & colleges. The U.S. is becoming a nation of obese couch potatoes as it is (this goes for the rest of the Western world too). We need to take the seriousness out of sports and make it again what it was originally supposed to be -- fun activities that kept the kids playing the sports, as well as the kids in the stands watching, too busy to go out into the streets and get into trouble at night and on the weekends.

I would reduce the number of sports though (how about football, basketball, baseball, and ice hockey -- and that's it?), and make their funding a non-priority (obviously!). Sports is a luxury that can be paid for after all educational needs are met.

Sports does have its place in the education system -- it teaches teamwork, dedication, perserverence, etc. -- but it should be treated as a luxury, not a necessity.

posted on Jul, 15 2004 @ 03:07 PM
Sports also teach concentration, wisdom, insite in situations, and predicting future plays or events based on current data. This goes for baseball, football, soccer, basketball, hockey, track 'n field etc... Athletes use their brains and work hard. Athletes cannot afford to lose their concentration, discipline of mind, and vision of the sport they're practicing. Think about it. Unlike popular belief, sports doesn't have much to do with dimished mental capabilities IMO.

And as for the Hip Hop culture mentioned earlier. True, a lot of it is stupid, and seems brainless. But there are a lot of brilliant artists who, if you listen to their lyrics and way of thinking are promoting intelligence and people to think. So don't generalize about it. In the caribbean we speak Bad English, it's just another form of English suited to our ways of living and being. That's what Ebonics is, suited to their ways of living and being, which can be creative and intelligent more often than people give them credit for. There's no better way of speaking English, there are just other ways.

For the rest I agree that the masses prefer to be ignorant, and don't like to think other than the ways that they've been raised with and what society finds is acceptable. There are things that I try to discuss even here on ATS, but that are unfairly being ignored or brushed of, so ATS is definately not immune to this.

posted on Jul, 15 2004 @ 10:54 PM
I only mentioned disbanding team sports where you go and play against another institution.

I thought pretty carefully about it for the reasons y'all gave. Athletics belong in school. Yet busing a football team, coaches, a marching band, and a bunch of cheerleaders every friday night is a huge waste of effort that distracts students from their work (school).

Also, take a look at your local highschool budget. They usually pad the expenses of athletics by putting into 'grounds maintenance.' Heck, lighting the field for practice games costs several hundred a week. Then there is the field itself which must be mown constantly and re-sodded every 4 years or so. All so that 40 males, out of the whole student body, can beat the crap out of themselves 14 nights every autumn.

Hockey is a similar investment.

Track is cheap, and has a much lower incedence of injuries. Highschool football and hockey are downright unethical, training kids to injure themselves permanently for the 'glory' of it. (Dr. still limps on cold days, b/c of old football injuries.)

I am in favor of CHEAP sports that teach teamwork (relay is excellent). I also favor competition within the school rather than galavanting all over the state worrying about a ball instead of trig or calculus.

Interesting, I thought a lot of the program of "Emporer Strangecraft the Terrible" would draw a lot more fire than it has today.

posted on Jul, 15 2004 @ 10:59 PM
Here's my 11th strategy for changing society: two words

Tort Reform.

(In colloquial english, it's pronounced "loser pays.")

posted on Jul, 15 2004 @ 11:38 PM
Quoting EnronOutrunHomerun

Add to that the fact that our education system here in America is not all that great of a system to go thru in most parts of the US,

I'm rather curious about this statement and wonder whether anyone here would care to enlighten me on this or add a comment. It was my belief that the US education was pretty good - allowing for the fact that there will always be elements that we as adults would like added to or incorporated into the curriculum.

posted on Jul, 16 2004 @ 02:18 AM

Originally posted by God
The reason (in my opinion) for why athletes get paid more than teachers.....sports are a major distraction. Instead of worrying about the war, the country, the world, etc, people would rather being worrying about weither the yankees win the game, or that 'great play'.

this is off the main topic, but i think the idea is, that if teachers are paid very little, the job will be less appealing and only those people who really want to teach would be teachers. Hence better teachers. As in, people who find helping students more rewarding than money.

Also, baseball players are paid so much money because the really rich white guys who pay them, make back more and more in revenues for winning teams and so winning players are a hot commodity.

btw, sorry for my lack of proper sentence structure, tonight.

posted on Jul, 16 2004 @ 02:28 AM

Originally posted by quango
...i think the idea is, that if teachers are paid very little, the job will be less appealing and only those people who really want to teach would be teachers. Hence better teachers. As in, people who find helping students more rewarding than money...

No, it has the opposite effect! Less pay leads to less qualified teachers to teach Math, Science (especially those two), Social Studies, and English, because the people with the better qualifications and skills are going to go to the higher paying jobs in those subjects -- which will be outside of education.

In effect, paying teachers very little for their work leads to the U.S. secondary school system getting the academic leftovers...

posted on Jul, 16 2004 @ 09:29 AM
That seems like the question that is at the core of this little side-issue.

I think better pay DOES produce better teachers. I have a unique gift for teaching, and I perform in that role in civic organizations (gratis) where I instruct adults in an ongoing basis.

I have only considered teaching in the public schools when we couldn't pay the bills. And we were looking at my doing it solely for the benefits and extra income; plus we'd have access to a particular school's day-care, run solely for the employees' families. . .

Why didn't I go through with it? It is a sucky job where you get threatened by the kids, bossed by the administration, and threatened with legal action by everyone. And the pay works out to be pure crap. I could make more money hanging doors in the new subdivision that's going up south of here.

The idea that if you don't pay them, then only those who love the job will do it is pure crap. The worst cops i've dealt with were "reserve officers," guys who drew only a $100 a month, but still got to tote a badge at their day-job. They are not motivated to follow directives cause they don't care if they are fired. Same with teachers-for-low wages.

Most of them, (like me) would take the job out of desperation, and leave as soon as they could get something better. Which, come to think of it, is the way things are now. Most teachers around here have taught for less than 5 years. That means a lot of turnover.

posted on Jul, 16 2004 @ 01:37 PM
Dr. Strangecraft you have an excellent plan. Quick run for political office. But about sports those belong at a park district. The athletes that were in my class when I was in school were all retards. Yes all but one or two. They didn't learn teamwork, they didn't use there brains. I found out they ended up using the same routines. This made them predicible and stupid. Athletics just aren't helping because rich parents are to busy giving their kids money instead of telling them not to brag about how good they are. The athletes get full of them selves so they become oblivious to the outside world.

posted on Jul, 16 2004 @ 03:06 PM

Originally posted by dr_strangecraft
[Teaching public school] is a sucky job where you get threatened by the kids, bossed by the administration, and threatened with legal action by everyone. And the pay works out to be pure crap. I could make more money hanging doors in the new subdivision that's going up south of here.

Yes, it is that bad, and getting worse every year. Here are a few examples...

Did you know that around the U.S., the federal government is closing Special Ed classrooms and integrating them with regular school classrooms? Special Ed, which is meant to help kids with major learning disabilities and emotional disturbances (read: violent), is being forcefully integrated nationwide. This is all being done in the name of "learning in the least restrictive environment", as it says in federal law -- basically, the Special Ed kids get to be in the 'regular ed' kids' classrooms so their feelings won't get hurt. Never mind the fact that this hurts both the Special Ed kids and the 'regular ed' kids, as well as destroys the teacher's ability to teach and control the classroom. How do you teach in a classroom where kids range from very fast to very slow, from way ahead to way behind, and with kids who are emotionally disturbed (and can't get punished for misbehaving because it's their disability) at the same time? You can't!

Then we have chronically disruptive students (read: kids who shouldn't even be in classrooms); they strike fear into teachers and students alike. However, federal law says that teachers and schools can get sued by parents if their kids are kicked out of school for any period of time, resulting in a loss of instructional time (which chronically disruptive students weren't interested in anyway). The result is that schools make it almost impossible to punish students now to avoid lawsuits; teachers can't put students in hallways, give extra homework, pop quizzes, or put them out of class altogether; suspensions in most states has a limit around 10 days; and it practically takes a court order (and good luck getting one) to get a chronically disruptive student expelled these days.

Finally, teachers get treated like crap -- they are the pawns of both the principals and the parents -- and they are told what to teach by politicians who sat down and came up with the cirriculum (despite the fact that they're the experts in their subjects). They are also paid very poorly -- the starting salary for rookie teachers in U.S. States, when you convert it to a wage, comes out to about $10/hour, plus insurance.

All this adds up to a formula for failure...

posted on Jul, 16 2004 @ 05:23 PM

Originally posted by minimi
For some reason, when you are at school, the clever, who care about education are exiled as geeks. The stupid seem to resent the superior. In britain we have a 'gangsta' 'rudeboy' culture in the youth. Why? everything related to being a 'rudeboy' is retarded, everything someone trying to be 'gangsta' does seems to be stupid. why are they then the most popular? It does not make sense. Why aren't the clever respected and popular?

Because of influense brouthg up by higher status of people. Ever since modern music became played starting from Elvis Presly people want to be like super stars. So if "50 cent" acts like a "gansta" everyone who likes him acts like a "gansta" too. If Marilyn Manson acts like a crazy person then those who like him act likehim too. It's infleunce that really pisses me off!

posted on Jul, 16 2004 @ 09:25 PM
My high school was a joke! It was horribly underfunded, the teachers really did not care about anything. How can you blame them when they get paid as much as a mcdonalds worker. One teacher would give us all the answers to the test, and let us use the notes on the test! I cant imagine it getting better any time soon. They focus so much energy on security, sports, all that club bs. You can get kicked out of school for wearing blue shoe laces but not get kicked out for making someone cry and want to kill themself. They should devote all of their time and energy to making school a more positive experience of free thinking and really try to make students better people. They let the rudest kids control the class simply because the teachers are too scared to disiplin them properly. A korean friend of my said that in his contry the kids will get beaten because if they are not they will not want to learn. I have nothing against that because the way our schools are nobody has an incentive to learn. Dr Strange you are brilliant.

posted on Jul, 17 2004 @ 12:02 AM
Wasn't there a Report that came out stating that the Percentage of Americans that Read - On the Job & for Pleasure (Imagine that Reading for pleasure - I got made fun of too) - is the LOWEST that it has ever been. Education in the U.S.A. SUCKS - how else can you explain George W. Bush?

posted on Jul, 17 2004 @ 10:31 AM
A big part of the problem is that school is universal and so it has no meaning. There's nothing special or worthy of pride in making it through the 12th grade, because anyone can do it as long as they're sucking wind.

I would give students the option of dropping out after the 9th grade if they chose to.

A know a lot people will freak out over the idea, but here's my reasoning:

-Most of the people who would choose to leave at that point are basically through learning anyway. Forcing them to be present merely disrupts the rest of the school.

-The first year might see some kind of mass exodus. But once they got out and realized they couldn't drive or find a job, they might begin to get a different attitude. (especially with my Welfare Reform in Place.) I think it would scare the CRAP out of the younger ones, and make them apply themselves.

-There would be less illegal immigration, because once we quit subizing our own underclass, the scholastic underperformers would take the lawncare and cement-laying jobs currently performed by illegal labor.


I'd make it a lot easier to expell students for misbehavior, too. Cameras in the classrooms, so the teachers would have the proof they'd need.


posted on Jul, 17 2004 @ 10:53 AM

Originally posted by dr_strangecraft
I would give students the option of dropping out after the 9th grade if they chose to.

As understand the german educational system, students go to school in pretty much the normal manner for 9 years. After that the students either go to college or for some type of vocational training. The german state has some control over which options are available to the student based on the students performance in the first 9 years.

Is this something like you have in mind dr_strangecraft?

posted on Jul, 17 2004 @ 02:39 PM
Yes, as a matter of fact. I think the choice is either Gymnasium or Hochschuele, but I'm not certain, as I've never lived there.

One of the problems we have is that many Americans believe that certain types of work are "beneath their dignity." I have poured a fair amount of concrete in my time, and done years of farm labor (paid my way through college and part of Grad school that way.)

My grandad would be laughed out of the conversation today, but he used to carry on about the "inherent dignity of all work;" and speak of a person's vocation (calling) rather than a 'job.' He ran an engineering firm founded by his father in the 1880's which is still in business.


Basically, I'd divide all 18 year olds into 4 categories. Armed forces, Police Auxillary, Emergency Response, and Civil Works Corps. You could choose which you wanted. Armed forces and Emergency response would probably have qualifying exams.

Armed forces would go through basic training for a rifle company. Promising students could continue on into the regular military if they desired.

Police Auxilliary would wear different color uniforms, and carry cam-corders and pepper spray instead of pistols. They'd work accidents, provide security at public events, and write traffic tickets. Young people might have better respect for the police if they'd served with 'em. Regular cops would be on film more, and probably behave more professionally, too. And by God, the speed limits would be enforced in this country!

Emergency response would get paramedic training, and those who pass could begin training on a doctor, nurse, or tech track if they chose. Washouts of the program would go into one of the other programs.

Civil works would build schools, prisons, parks and so forth. Most of the building trades are actually fairly technical, but the kids who did well would probably be invited to apprentice in the building trades.


This is all in contrast to the current state of affairs, where we turn a child loose with a diploma, an adult body, and a set of car keys on graduation day. Most of them have never worked at actual "work," not even a Summer job. No wonder so many of them simply cannot cut it in the adult world.

My very first job was to pull tumble weeds out of 3 strand barb-wire fence, so that the men could pull it tight with a come-along. I probably made 30 bucks a Saturday (1980 or so).

My next job was driving a wheat harvesting combine, a John Deere 95. It had "armstrong power steering" and a "grind-n-find" transmission. We worked from "can't see" to "can't see," and got a free steak for lunch, in 100 degree shade. I didn't even have a driver's license yet.

My senior year in High School, i'd had enough of 'real' work, so I got a job as a stocker in a grocery. I was in the air conditioning all day, and thought I'd died and gone to heaven.

Needless to say, when I arrived at college, I was more highly motivated than most of my classmates. If I complained about my classes, my Mom would say something like, "well, you can probably make it home in time for wheat harvest . . ."

So I am fairly out of place in society. I have a value system based on my own experience, which was to do without until I could get it myself. My parents couldn't afford to buy me a car when I left for college; Dad gave me a hundred bucks he'd saved so I could get a bicycle. Other than that, I've never been given a car or a place to live. I paid my way through college and grad school (and am still paying!)

Maybe if more people shared that experience, they'd have the attitude I do. I know it seems pretty fascist from the outside, but it is based on the supremecy of having to meet your own needs. But then that's what real independence means.

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