We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
You should probably reprint this or something like it once a year. The narcissist and loudmouth stand out in our memory and understanding, but that obscures that this is a general tendency.
Assistant Village Idiot
"Almost everyone thinks that they are smarter than they are".
Including the people who came up with this hypothesis???
It may be 100% correct. It may be simply the self appointed "smart" people slapping us commoners down with a thinly veiled insult.
If 100 experts in 100 separate rooms defined "smart" I would bet that there would be little agreement AND that what agreement there was would be small groups which also disagreed with the other small groups who were in agreement.
Smart can be taught. It can be inherited. It can evolve. And it is many things not one thing. The lowliest uneducated aboriginal/native from the 15th century was "smart". The smartest person in the 21st century if thrust into a 15th century lifestyle would undoubtedly die within days simply as a lack of knowledge.
Usually when we think of "smart" we imagine an expert in his/her field expounding on something they have studied for years. Two points: 1.This has been happening for centuries and over the years many of these "smart" people who were experts in their field and studied in them for years and even a lifetime have been proven wrong. 2.JFK once said that the experts are always wrong. What he meant was that when you consult an expert, especially if he is on your payroll, they feel compelled to give you their expert opinion even when they simply do not know the answer. After all "they are experts".
There is a paradox where the most intelligent (can we agree that most intelligent equates at some level to "smart"?) are not the most successful. The other side of that coin is most millionaires never went to or graduated from college. So tell me again what "smart" is AND was it the unsuccessful college graduates who defined it?
I could go on but I probably am totally wrong and just think I'm smart.
Well, you're not totally wrong, but there's a lot more to this discussion that you might read up on. You are wildly overgeneralising here. Just because the standard stereotype of college and "proper learning" and PC attitude are a myth of intelligence doesn't mean the opposite myth is true.
It's usually half-truths, not complete bosh, that are the most dangerous.
I don't think that the opposite is true. What I think and was trying to express is that we don't have a handle on what is smart or intelligent. We have some ideas that are probably or mostly right and may well account for 50% of the problem more or less. But where this becomes an issue is when we think we do understand intelligence/IQ/smart. In other words; when we don't know what we don't know.
Assuming that your performance/knowledge will be worse than average in any given task is useful heuristic but what D-K really points out is the folly of assuming that an intelligent person with a superficial grasp of a subject is expressing an 'informed opinion'. This applies particularly to the chattering classes and experts venturing outside their field of expertise.
Well, there’s always hope. The graph says 80% of the people think they know more than they actually do, but there is the remaining 20% who think they know less than they actually do. I’d say that smartest 20%, who know (or even overestimate) what they don’t know, are also very likely Pareto’s 20% who do 80% of the work.
In 1963 I worked for a self made millionaire. In 1963 a million was a lot of money. He owned a gas station. He was a smart man. Brakes, mufflers, things like that and he became a millionaire. No education past HS. Just down the street, coincidently, was an older guy with a dozen or so patents. He was a genius electrical engineer. He invented a magnetic device during WW II that would protect warships from sub attacks. He had a wall of degrees and awards in his living room, He died pennyless. Which of the two was "smarter"?