New studies have shown a strong correlation between low intelligence and right-wing politics.

From the linked article in a british Newspaper today...

Right-wingers tend to be less intelligent than left-wingers, and people with low childhood intelligence tend to grow up to have racist and anti-gay views, says a controversial new study. Conservative politics work almost as a 'gateway' into prejudice against others, say the Canadian academics.

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-2095549/Right-wingers-intelligent-left-wingers-says-controversial-study--conservative-politics-lead-people-racist.html

Gosh... what implications does this study have. What does it say about the Christian Conservatives and Tea Party here in America? Do you agree with the findings?

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For me, the main problem here is that the article title ("Right-wingers are less intelligent than left wingers, says study") is inflammatory and doesn't accurately summarize what the study is all about. The study is much more than a simple comparison of the IQ scores (or some other measurement of...

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For me, the main problem here is that the article title ("Right-wingers are less intelligent than left wingers, says study") is inflammatory and doesn't accurately summarize what the study is all about. The study is much more than a simple comparison of the IQ scores (or some other measurement of intelligence) of two groups of people.

From what little of the study is actually quoted in the article, the most compelling statement for me is this one: "Conservative ideology represents a critical pathway through which childhood intelligence predicts racism in adulthood." This statement does not establish cause and effect or explain the reasoning for the predictive pattern; it simply lays out a pattern that, from what the article says, is statistically significant.

It would be worth looking at this study more closely and perhaps even comparing it to what other studies say. One such study is a Yale study referenced here -- http://www.salon.com/2012/02/24/the_ugly_delusions_of_the_educated_conservative/singleton/ -- and accessible here -- http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=1871503&http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=1871503.

In that study, Kahan and his group found that a person's level of education alone does not predict that person's stance on a particular issue (the issue in this study is global warming). They identified the importance of the interaction between the person's political views and their scientific/mathematic literacy. They suggest that what we might be seeing is not simply a grouping of people into the smart camp and dumb camp but rather "a conflict [within a single person] between two levels of rationality."

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There is a part of me that really wants to believe this study has merit. As I think about the many people who are easily misinformed and misguided by political policies and laws that they have very little understanding of because they neglected to do their own research, yet they spew hate and controversy by blindly believing certain powerful people.

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There is so much potential bias built into the study and into the choice to publish the results, I have a hard time taking the results at face value. Yet, frizzyperm makes a compelling point about the methods of the study.

I personally am not at all surprised by these findings when related to racism, bigotry and other notions that are commonly already known as "small minded".

I am a liberal, but I hesitate to apply the label "small minded" to conservative policies, politics and politicians.

I feel there is a danger in generalizing too much here and engaging in a kind of vindicated-small-mindedness as a reaction to this kind of news.

Cheering this report as if it is generalizable fact and as if it serves as a sword in the hand of the saint is to engage in exactly the kind of "low IQ" thinking the study seems to attribute to racists, homophobes, etc.

It's probably best to be liberal in our understanding of what this data really means. Clearly, that's the smart thing to do.

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I would completely discount the validity of the study you cite without seeing a great deal of supportive data. "The Daily Mail" is a British tabloid newspaper that has not been known for serious research and completely unbiased reporting of news. It has a conservative editorial philosophy but uses sensationalist headlines and stories to promote sales. This sounds like a case in point.

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My first thought is who funded the study, and my second thought is intelligent by what standard? There are plenty of smart people and plenty of dumb ones across the entire political spectrum. Each side of the spectrum views the other side as "wrong" or "stupid" in their view of the world and how it should operate. Because there are so many different kinds of intelligence, I can't imagine that any study should make a claim like the one above.

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I think perhaps Winston Churchill said it best with

If you're not a liberal at twenty you have no heart; if you're not a conservative at forty you have no brain.

Generally speaking, I think to the public many politicians (on either side) look like they suffer from a stupidity epidemic.  However, I can't imagine, scientifically or otherwise, that liberal- or conservative-ism can be linked to intelligence.

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I don't think that this kind of thing helps us at all. Part of the reason we can't ever seem to accomplish anything is that we spend too much time arguing and calling each other names, and focusing on broad ideological issues rather than practical ideas.
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Well, this would certainly explain why anyone would support Newt Gingrich in his run for President. However, I doubt that there is much truth to this interesting suggestion, since there are many highly intelligent people who support both liberal and conservative philosophies.

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I have serious doubts about this claim.  Mostly, this is because I am not at all sure that we have good ways of measuring intelligence.  I do not believe, for example, that the IQ gap between races means that whites are smarter than blacks.  If there truly is an IQ gap between conservatives and liberals, I would not believe that that proves that conservatives truly are less intelligent.  I simply don't believe that IQ has much connection to real intelligence.

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