Are libertarians more intelligent than conservatives and liberals?

The short answer is “yes.”

Jonathan Haidt, a moral psychologist at NYU’s Stern School of Business, published a paper in 2012 with three colleagues exploring libertarian morality. Dr Haidt is well-known for his work on studying morality among conservatives and liberals in the US, but has become increasingly interested in libertarians (or, at least, he can no longer ignore us).

Among the factors that Haidt and his colleagues explore and compare with liberals and conservatives is intelligence, or at least one common measure of it:

The Cognitive Reflection Task is a set of 3 logic questions that have correct and intuitive answers. Correct answers on these questions is said not just to measure intelligence, but also to measure a person’s ability to suppress an intuitive response in service of the cognitive reasoning required to solve these problems.



Table 3 shows that libertarians find the correct answers to these questions at a slightly higher rate than liberals and moderately higher rate compared to conservatives (also see Figure 4).


The cognitive reflection task provides a behavioral validation of the hypothesis that libertarians have a more reasoned cognitive style. In our dataset, this measure inter-correlates with both Need for Cognition […] and Baron-Cohen Systemizer […] scores, with libertarians scoring higher than both liberals and conservatives on all three measures. Taken together, a convergent picture of the rational cognitive style of libertarians emerges.

Although the Cognitive Reflection Task is just one test among many that attempts to measure intelligence, and although I am not a big believer that intelligence tests are any good at detecting intelligence (they are, however, great for analyzing structural issues within a society or across different societies), it’s hard to argue with the results: Libertarians score higher on intelligence tests than either liberals or conservatives. Here is the paper. I’d be very interested in reading through more literature that deals with this, but libertarians are new to a lot of scholars (which is why Haidt’s “common-sense” approach is being considered groundbreaking for including libertarians).

You don’t really need to read the paper though. Dr Amburgey, the house liberal of this blog, explains well why liberals tend to score slightly lower on intelligence tests than libertarians. Here, for example, is Dr Amburgey trying to tell me that the CIA is not really arming rebels in Syria if it goes through proxies like Qatar and Saudi Arabia. It’s an intelligent response, to be sure, but a libertarian – slightly more superior in his cognitive abilities, according to science – knows better.

Notes  On Liberty‘s house conservative*, Dr Delacroix, amply demonstrates why conservatives are not in the same league as liberals or libertarians.

With the fact that libertarians are more intelligent than liberals and conservatives in mind, I’d like to take a moment to a) bask in the glory of it all, and b) go back to Rick’s question about the One Big Change that I’d like to make.

I think that there is a way to incorporate open borders into a One Big Change-style reform while also leaving room for other improvements such as financial competition in the markets (rather than between governments) and competing tax regimes. I’d dig deeper and go a little more structural. I’d federate the entire world, and I wouldn’t make the federation out of the current agglomeration of nation-states, either. I would destroy the states currently in place and federate the administrative units that currently operate underneath the nation-state.

This, I think, would do a great job of incorporating open borders (everyone is part of the same federal union now), financial competition (no more national banks), tax regimes (you can more easily vote with your feet), and a common legal system that protects individual rights such as private property and freedom of religion.

*Dr Delacroix is, of course, a libertarian. He just calls himself a conservative out of spite for liberals, and because he mistakenly thinks of himself as a paternalistic defender of the common man from Leftist condescension and aggression.

45 thoughts on “Are libertarians more intelligent than conservatives and liberals?

  1. I’m pleased by my appointment as house liberal. I will work hard to be promoted to house progressive.

    I must admit that I’m pained by your bringing up one of the Obama administration’s foreign policy failures [at least in my opinion]. Syria is still a cluster-fuck. I think the lack of military support for some of the rebel groups contributed to the mess.

    I wish that your fantasy about the CIA arming the rebels had been true.

    “Let me try to be clearer. If the CIA helps the Saudis and Qataris arm the rebels then the US hasn’t armed the rebels the Saudis and Qataris have. I assert that the US hasn’t spent a cent buying arms for the rebels do you have any evidence that it has? I assert that the US has not sent any arms owned by the US to the rebels. Do you have any evidence that it has? What you sourced said that the Saudis and Qataris bought arms with THEIR money then the CIA helped them get the arms into southern Syria. The nature of the ‘help’ was unspecified.”

    If giving the Saudis & Qataris some roadmaps and advising them to ‘turn left at the third crossroads’ is the best the administration could do they deserve all the flak they’ve been receiving.

    • Doctor Amburgey,

      You are embarrassing yourself. Please! For the love of God, stop! My sides hurt from laughing at you.

      You’re making me look too good to be true. Let’s stick with the logic here (rather than pointing out your superfluous use of made-up facts), as cognitive ability is what this post is about. I’m going to excerpt a quote you just gave me and I want to see if you can connect the dots:

      If the CIA helps the Saudis and Qataris arm the rebels then the US hasn’t armed the rebels […]

      Can you see anything wrong with this sentence? Anything at all?

    • Nope, the sentence is fine. Now let me ask you a question. Two ice hockey players [Amburgey and Christensen] are swiftly skating towards their opponents net. Amburgey passes the puck to Christensen who slaps the puck into the net past the hapless Delacroix. Who gets credit for the GOAL and who gets the ASSIST? This is not a test for cognitive ability, feel free to look it up on the internet before you answer.

      Ice hockey fans know the difference between helping someone else and doing it yourself. Hopefully this knowledge will diffuse among libertarians.

    • Amazing!

      Uncle Terry: to continue your analogy (and to continue to show why libertarians are smarter than liberals), is there a team that gets rewarded for the goal and the assist? That is to say, does one team get a point thanks to teamwork?

      Again, your facts are wrong but for this exercise I am more interested in cognitive abilities.

    • Yes, the sentence unfortunately hasn’t taken into account the cerebrally-challenged nature of liberal perception. As the sentence does not begin with ‘capitalism is to blame for…’ or ‘the white male religious right is the cause of’, ‘or global warming has led to…’ it may be difficult for people like you to make valid inferences from the premises that the Saudis and Qatar are financially in bed with the United States and that their actions are in line with US interests.

      It may seem like putting 2 and 2 together but then we’re logical, intelligent libertarians.

  2. Fifty years ago libertarian ideas were far outside the mainstream. Libertarians of the time had to do a lot of thinking and reading, and this required above-average intelligence. Nowadays it’s possible to absorb libertarian ideas through the culture. As new people are attracted to the movement, it’s inevitable that many or most won’t have done much reading or thinking and will gradually lower the level of intelligence.

    • Alas, you are too correct Dr Gibson.

      How do you feel about libertarianism becoming more prevalent? I know I would still be a socialist today if it weren’t for Ron Paul’s presidential campaigns, and there is no way of knowing if I would have have even heard of libertarianism if it weren’t for him.

      At the same time, I can practically feel the movement getting dumber, and you are definitely smarter than me so I can only imagine what the current state of the movement looks like from your perch.

    • For sure, I’m older. Smarter? Who knows?

      How do I feel about the rise of libertarian ideas? Surprised and delighted, especially with the response I get from students. Also realistic about how far we have to go.

      As we learn in economics, averages don’t tell the whole story. You have to look at distributions too. Although the rising popularity likely means the average intelligence is declining, I’m very pleased at the growing number of intellectuals, writers and politicians who espouse at least partly libertarian ideas. The influence of these leaders is a lot greater than that of the masses that may call themselves libertarian without much understanding of what it’s about.

      Postscript: I backed the wrong horse in 1980: the Libertarian Party. Ed Clark got 5% that year and I figured it would be onward and upward from there. I underestimated the influence of Rand, Hayek, Rothbard, and others, and never imagined the success that Cato has achieved. Not so smart, was I.

    • Look at the imbecilic,uninformed, uncivil, illogical comments generated by both liberal and conservative contributors to the web. This seems to have no negative effect at all on the popularity of their views. In fact, enthusiastic ignorance seems to be effective. Surely a “lower level of intelligence ,” from future casual libertarians should not be regretted. How could they possibly lower the abysmal level of the current left-right “dialog”? Lord knows there are few enough libertarians of any sort. Besides, many very serious libertarians should chill a bit, enjoy life more, and not be quite so elitist.

    • It stands to reason that many of the complex problems we face today can only be solved effectively by the best of problem solvers. The best problem solvers have spent years refining their craft through practice, absorption of educational material, some if it quite complex. When you consider that politics is largely about macro-economics, sociology, cognitive science and psychology, you realize that you would rarely encounter an expert in all of those disciplines unless they were very persistent and diligent for a large portion of their lives. In order to become a person like this, they would first need to have the ability to absorb the knowledge which in some instances is quite complex and then they would have to be persistent. Relatively few people possess these traits from what I can tell in my experience in life.

      Another thing to note about the correlation between IQ and Libertarianism. I have no empirical evidence for this claim but it seems reasonable that the best problem solvers are creative problem solvers. We also know creativity is hindered when mindlessly conforming to group norms. The focus in Libertarianism on the individual and personal freedom aligns itself quite nicely with the creative and artistic which also aligns itself quite well to problem solving when used in that capacity. It seems common sense that when you value all these traits you would get very intelligent, creative problem solvers.

      While all this is important we must remember that the Libertarian Achilles Heel tends to be a lack of empathy. Decisions made purely with Analytical Hierarchical Decision Making ( without considerations for empathy or the emotions of others that it might not work well all the time. You have to consider how people measure quality of life from different points of view or subjective experiences if you want to maximize that for a broad spectrum of people. For this reason, I have adopted a thought process whereby empathy and other emotional considerations are just other weighted factors in my rational decision making process. So far that has served me quite well is my personal and professional life. I am quite pleased with the results. Unfortunately, it adds additional complexity but no one said life was simple.

    • Life has been nuts lately, lots of good things going on with me so unfortunately liberty and the pursuit thereof has been on the back burner but I should be ramping up again soon. I have a few really interesting articles to talk about and as I said that Rothbard piece is percolating. I can’t half-ass my support of “Scripture” as Terry likes to call it.

  3. […] So, ideologically, there are only conservatives and socialists competing for hearts and minds in Syria. Liberals simply emigrate to the West. Letting the post-colonial world devolve into smaller and smaller political units would limit conflicts and casualties, but the road to a peaceful and prosperous Middle East is going to be a long, hard haul without  way to re-introduce liberalism into the region (Jacques has put forth a doable proposal, as has Rick, but my own is too ambitious). […]

  4. […] Preventing dialogue, preventing compromise, and preventing victory in Syria by inadvertently playing different sides off on each other is not a humanitarian option. It’s not even a good “smart power” option. The military power of the West has been overrated for about a hundred years now. Its true power rests in the international institutions – international governmental organizations (IGOs) – it has been creating piecemeal over the past five hundred years. I blogged about wielding this influence most recently here and here. (and here is an older one). Also, open borders is an option that is never entertained by the international relations community (which is probably because it can only be implemented with some sort of political integration). […]

  5. One thing that is ignored is that there is a lot of nuance in this.

    There are conservatives who are more liberal-minded and liberals who are more conservative-minded. Also, are we going by what people identify or what positions they actually hold. According to Pew data, many people who hold liberal positions actually identify as conservative.

    Furthermore, there are liberal libertarians and conservative libertarians. I’m willing to bet the former test higher than the latter. I’m more of a liberal myself, but with some liberaltarian leanings. A conservative libertarian might be about equivalent as a high range conservative, and yet might be lower than a high range liberal.

    What is actually being measured here? What liberals and libertarians have in common is they are both on average higher in social liberalism, but that isn’t always the case. Some liberals are only moderate on social liberalism and some libertarians of the religious variety can be quite socially conservative. I’ve even met some self-identified liberals who were surprisingly conservative on social issues.

    If were to measure social liberalism, that is where the highest IQs would be found, as studies show. So, social liberals no matter what label they choose would be at the high end of the IQ spectrum. The libertarians that I’ve met that seem the least intelligent do tend to express more social conservative views.

    All of this is going to throw of the accuracy or at least clarity of what the numbers indicate.

    • All good points Benjamin, though I think the methodology of the paper in question does a good job of accounting for nuances (remember: methodology is what turns “numbers” into “data”).

      For example, I know some really stupid social liberals. They’ll tell me with a straight face that “austerity” is responsible for the bad Greek economy, or that the 2nd Amendment is responsible for black-on-black violence in the United States. Likewise, I know some really smart social conservatives.

      The beautiful thing about Haidt and Co.’s methodology is that we don’t have to rely on personal anecdotes to argue anymore! At least on this issue, we have actual data to point to rather than mere “numbers.”

    • Such things as social liberalism exists on a spectrum. Most liberals I’ve known aren’t extreme on the social liberalism scale. What goes for ‘liberal’ in the US is what would be considered socially moderate in some countries.

      The US is a strange country. Conservatives are in many ways reactionary and anti-traditional. There is nothing conservative about laissez-faire capitalism and hyper-individualism. So, American liberals oddly are in the position of defending traditional conservative values. Even gun regulation is inherently conservative-minded.

      I live in the Midwest. There is a strong politically liberal tradition. But it is equal parts social liberalism and social conservatism. Midwestern liberals often defend liberal values and policies by using conservative arguments of family, community, and work ethic.

      Also, there is the class aspect. The wealthier people are the more they tend to be socially liberal. Being wealthier means having better environmental conditions for healthy brain growth and cognitive development.

      This is complicated. It’s more complicated than even Haidt understands. I’ve written extensively about Haidt’s theory in my own blog. The correlation between high IQ and social liberalism is also strongly supported by research and doesn’t need mere speculation or personal anecdotes, but research always requires interpretation

    • @Benjamin,

      I’m sorry but being socially liberal is only one aspect of having a higher IQ than everybody else. Being an economic conservative and socially liberal is the key to being the smartest ass in the room.

      Liberals are dumber than libertarians. There’s no point in arguing further unless you have some data to back up your speculation.

      PS: You have confused class with income. It’s a common mistake, to be sure, but one that can lead to all sorts of misunderstandings.

    • I never claimed social liberalism was everything.

      Part of my point was that it is complex even defining such things. That was one of the problems with Haidt’s research. He takes labels at face value, instead of looking at some of what I consider the most important details. For example, he ignores the disparities between self-identified labels and the positions people actually hold, at least in his past research he ignores this.

      I’m talking about known research. Social liberalism is the one thing that diverse studies have found to be most strongly correlated to high IQ. Most libertarians are more socially liberal than most other people, maybe even more socially liberal than the average US liberal, especially if one equates liberalism with the Democratic Party.

      To understand the complexity, consider authoritarianism, which correlates to lower IQ. In former communist countries, authoritarianism unsurprisingly correlates to left-wing politics. But in the US, authoritarianism correlates to conservatism. Social liberalism will lead someone to challenge the status quo, something that has been shown many studies (authoritarians, whether politically left or right, always test low on social liberalism). Depending on what is the status quo in one’s society will determine what a social liberal would challenge. So, correlations that exist in the US would be different than correlations found in other countries.

      What a libertarian such as yourself calls economic conservatism isn’t conservative in a psychological sense. It’s actually liberal-minded. The agreement between some libertarians and some conservatives about some economic issues is extremely superficial. As American history proves, conservatives are as supportive of big government and big spending as liberals, just in different ways. Instead of spending on welfare, they’ll spend the same amount of money on defense and such.

      BTW class and income are inseparable. People can’t change classes without changing income.

    • Benjamin,

      I never claimed that you claimed social liberalism was everything. Martyrdom will do you no good here.

      The methodology of the paper largely eliminates the (quite good) questions of nuance that you have raised. Nearly ten thousand people were sampled for the IQ portion of the test. That’s going to account for Benjamin’s Nuances and even for Benjamin’s define-as-you-go political categories. (Authoritarianism does not correlate with conservatism here in the US, for example; see the online Social Justice Warrior brigades for more details.)

      Your assertion that class and income are inseparable is just plain wrong. Eminem – the multi-millionaire hip-hop artist – has a daughter that graduated from high school with high honors; she’ll be attending Michigan State in the fall. My old construction boss built a custom home with his own blood, sweat, and tears on a lot in an affluent Sacramento suburb; he was ordered by the housing association to change the color of the house. Twice. You might like the late literary critic Paul Fussell’s Class: A Guide Through the American Status System.

    • “I never claimed that you claimed social liberalism was everything. Martyrdom will do you no good here.”

      That is an odd response. Your projecting your issues about martyrdom will do you no good either.

      “The methodology of the paper largely eliminates the (quite good) questions of nuance that you have raised. Nearly ten thousand people were sampled for the IQ portion of the test. That’s going to account for Benjamin’s Nuances and even for Benjamin’s define-as-you-go political categories.”

      It doesn’t eliminate them. It doesn’t even acknowledge such nuances. There is research that looks both at labels and positions, but the research I’ve seen of Haidt’s doesn’t do this. This isn’t to say that his work has no value, just clear limitations that disallow broad conclusions.

      Even only focusing on labels, Haidt doesn’t consider many other categories. He doesn’t differentiate left-libertarians and liberaltarians from right-libertarians. He doesn’t include Marxists, socialists, anarchists, etc. Most of these non-mainstream ideological labels would also tend to include those of higher IQs.

      “Authoritarianism does not correlate with conservatism here in the US, for example; see the online Social Justice Warrior brigades for more details.”

      I didn’t claim the two were synonymous. I said that authoritarianism correlates with social conservatism (or what sometimes is referred to as cultural conservatism), but not conservatism in general. I was being very specific, because I’m familiar with the social science research. It’s only certain aspects of conservative-mindedness that are common among authoritarians (while less common among liberals and libertarians): upholding traditional gender roles, support of law and order, intolerance of ambiguity, in-group preference, ethnocentrism, thick boundaries, need for closure, etc,

      None of this should be surprising for those who are familiar with political history. Consider the Soviets and Maoists. Both were strongly socially conservative with a distrust toward homosexuality, feminism, or really any kind of identity politics that competes with communism. Both were patriarchal societies with traditional patriarchal values. That was particularly true of the Maoists who were in some ways just modern Confucians.

      “Your assertion that class and income are inseparable is just plain wrong.”

      Your examples don’t disprove my claim. It’s not as if class is an absolute set of categories. If it was, class mobility would be impossible. In the US, class mobility has lessened, but not entirely disappeared. What a person does with their life may or may not have anything to do with the class they were raised in, although typically in most societies class will be inherited and embraced by each generation.

    • Aw c’mon dude.

      It’s okay to “learn out loud.” That’s what this blog is for. There’s no need to keep moving the goalposts.

      Look, if you can provide a single peer-reviewed paper, from any discipline, backing up your claim that “[m]ost of these non-mainstream ideological labels [left-libertarians, liberaltarians, Marxists, socialists, anarchists, etc.] would also tend to include those of higher IQs,” I’ll continue to take you seriously.

      A single peer-reviewed study, and that’s it.

      If you cannot provide a single peer-reviewed study to back up your claim, then I request that you refrain from lecturing me with boring, predictable anecdotes and instead begin asking questions in the ‘comments’ threads.

    • I don’t get the sense that I’m going to get an honest discussion out of you. You could educate yourself on the subject. That isn’t moving any goal posts. It’s just a choice you have to make or not. If you can provide a single piece of evidence that you aren’t willfully ignorant… just a single piece of evidence… dude…

    • A classy end to a classy dialogue. Thanks Benjamin!

      PS: Feel free to come back with some evidence to support your positions, or to simply talk about specific aspects of Haidt & co.’s paper that interested you.

  6. A great example of the superiority of many Libertarians and the idiocy of Libtards.. ‘ahem’ I mean liberals is global warming.

    All the scientific evidence supports the skeptics and there is zero evidence to support the hypothesis yet Liberals cling to it like cultists clinging to the promises of their leader.

    Well kids it’s education for anyone that still believes in Catastrophic Man made Global Warming.

    1. It hasn’t warmed globally for 18 years despite rising CO2.
    2. The Mediaeval, Roman and Minoan Warm Periods were as hot or hotter globally than today with much less CO2
    3. The Ordovician Period involved an ice age with CO2 levels 11 times that of today.
    4. No mid tropospheric hotspot disproves the warmists’ positive feedback hypothesis and proves the models wrong.
    5. No sea level rise increase.
    6. No sea temperature increase to account for the supposed ‘missing heat’ (ARGO buoy data) nor any explanation as to how heat would decide to jump into the ocean or violate the laws of thermodynamics and not warm the top layers on the way down.
    7. Outgoing Longwave radiation increases with surface warming cooling the planet (ERBE satellite)
    8. Low level cloud from water evaporation creates an albedo effect reflecting short wave radiation cooling the planet.
    9. Arctic ice has recovered from the 2007 minimum somewhat and had much less ice almost 1000 years ago enabling the Vikings to easily navigate the Arctic, with much less CO2!
    10. Antarctic sea ice is at record levels.
    11. CO2 lags 800 years behind temperature rise in the climate record showing temperature drives CO2 not the other way round. (Vostok ice cores). The falling temperatures in these records accelerates much faster than the CO2 showing that CO2 is not a primary driver and has little effect on climate.
    12. GCMs (Global Circulation Models) are consistently producing results at least 3 times that of the observed temperatures, showing the models have their climate sensitivity parameter drastically wrong. In other words there are zero to negative feedbacks in the climate system, not positive as the models assume.
    13. CO2 heat absorption and emission is logarithmic which means that after a certain point an extra CO2 added absorbs less and less heat.

  7. I’ve rarely seen any study with less compelling evidence than the cited by Haidt: “The Cognitive Reflection Task is a set of 3 logic questions”. First off, it’s a test primarily of cognitive style (analytical vs intuitive) and not an actual intelligence. As such, it’s not a decent test of intelligence. I would also like to see a test that distinguishes between a few more political groups. Lastly, the “intelligence” differences in the study where minute. In fact, the study is so weak on the intelligence variable as to be effectively useless.

    Moreover, since we are discussing the topic, from my personal personal experience of many high-IQ societies, such as Mensa and above, members tend to be overwhelmingly liberal. Socially liberal and economically liberal, while understanding the advantages of having a market economy, but also a social safety net and the rule of government

    Or, if you prefer to use the above vernacular: Left Libertarians as opposed to the traditional right-leaning libertarians.

  8. Anyway, here is an interesting examination I recently came across: “Libertarians are the smartest?”

    The percent of the total white sample in each category (sample size = 2,440):
    Libertarian 1.7%
    Conservative 4.6%
    Traditional Moderate 17.3%
    Permissive Moderate 5.4%
    Traditional Liberal 47.2%
    Permissive Liberal 23.8%

    Segmentation based on two questions:
    1. Participants were asked if they thought that marijuana should be illegal or illegal.
    2. They were also asked if the federal government spends too little, too much, or the right amount on improving education

    marijuana legal/spends too much = libertarian
    marijuana illegal/spends too much = conservative
    marijuana illegal/spends right amount = traditional moderate
    marijuana legal/spends right amount = permissive moderate
    marijuana illegal/doesn’t spend enough = traditional liberal
    marijuana legal/doesn’t spend enough = permissive liberal

    Mean IQs whites only:
    Libertarian 102.5
    Conservative 101.8
    Traditional Moderate 98.6
    Permissive Moderate 99.3
    Traditional Liberal 100.3
    Permissive Liberal 103.0

    Highest mean IQ: Permissive Liberals.

    Perhaps Haidt needs to be tipped of there may be an important distinction he missed in his apotheosis of libertarians: the granularity of segments.

    Of course, the above IQ differences are minuscule and the used test in the examination above is unknown. In order to get a better viewpoint where on the political spectrum highly intelligent lie you would have to examine the subgroups of people that actually are highly intelligent.

    • Thanks Smarty.

      Unfortunately, your argument falls into the same trap as Benjamin’s. The “granularity of segments” you refer to is largely useless for trying to figure out IQ by political affiliation (because doing so makes it too easy to set your opponents up for failure). This is (one of many reasons) why Haidt works at NYU’s business school and you and Benjamin don’t…

    • Well, Brandon, I think you are missing a number of fundamental points. Perhaps due to the educational background, even if a B.A. in cultural anthropology is proper for certain fields. Haidt in turn is a professor with a background in social psychology that is currently working at NYU.

      My own educational background is as a doctor of management and particularly private equity investments. I am also a member of an IQ society requiring a verified ability above the 99.9% limit, which is the reason I do possess some personal insight into the subject and the viewpoints of the “typical” member.

      I believe we have to conclude that sadly we fail utterly to convince each other.

  9. Brandon, if there is a single thing growing up entails it’s becoming aware of our personal limitations. Your response inadvertently epitomizes the Dunning and Kruger effect, in that for a given skill, incompetent people will:

    fail to recognize their own lack of skill
    fail to recognize the extent of their inadequacy
    fail to accurately gauge skill in others
    recognize and acknowledge their own lack of skill only after they are exposed to training for that skill

    A bachelors degree in cultural anthropology does not make a person an expert in… well, in any field in the world.

    Let me know when you join the International Society for Philosophical Enquiry, the oldest 99.9% Society in the world, and we’ll continue the debate. It should not be difficult to find me – I’ve already given you more than enough of personal information.

    Please feel free to make a final pointless response to this thread!

  10. Democrats are much smarter and better than Republicans, so why don’t they control the country?

    Answer this question: If libertarians are smarter than conservatives and liberals, why don’t they control the country? Your answer to my question will probably be the same as the answer to yours. See below for evidence.…

    • @ Quora

      Link doesn’t work.
      No reason to assume the smartest people will be elected when (a) most of campaigning is rhetorical and (b) smart people in general probably prefer to spend their time differently, e.g. there is a higher standard for intelligence in the hard sciences than in politics.

  11. Fun!
    1. Is there now a means for disentangling emotional preferences from intellectual conclusions?
    2. For politics, would we not do better to identify them as a gestalt and try to identify and classify specific behavioral patterns?
    3. Could political affiliation provide a start toward that inquiry?
    Is it possible that say, conservatives and liberals differ more emotionally than intellectually?Considering that emotions volunteer themselves but rational consideration requires a summons …

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