Ritchie, Stuart – 2017 – Review of The Rationality Quotient by Stanovich et al.
From Stuart Ritchie’s review of “The Rationality Quotient” by Keith Stanovich et al.:
But it was the reported correlation of the [Comprehensive Assessment of Rational Thinking] with IQ-type tests that was really unexpected, given the authors’ argument that they measure very different constructs. A cognitive composite—made up of tests of analogies, antonyms, and a word checklist (Table 13.11)—was found to have a correlation with the full-scale CART of 0.695. 0.695!
That’s the extent to which actual IQ tests typically load on the g factor and each other. One might even go so far as to propose that rationality is intelligence.
The notion that intelligent people are more prone to irrationality is a cognitive bias, though a very understandable one. The Newton who obsesses over the occult is just considerably more noticeable than some nutter ranting about the End Times.
Greg Cochran counters that Western intellectuals were more likely to fall for “destructive nonsense” than plumbers during the 20th century. I suspect that was more due to intellectuals not understanding plumbers, neither then nor now, rather than any failure of rationality per se. In everyday life, people tend to associate with people of similar intelligence, and have a social circle of about 150 friends and acquaintances.
And guess what? Communism works great within monasteries and universities.