November 17, 2010

"American Narcissus: The Vanity of Barack Obama"

Jonathan V.  Last had a good article a few weeks ago in The Weekly Standard demonstrating the size of the President's ego.

For example, he highlights this quote from a 2008 Ryan Lizza profile of Obama:
Obama said that he liked being surrounded by people who expressed strong opinions, but he also said, “I think that I’m a better speechwriter than my speechwriters. I know more about policies on any particular issue than my policy directors. And I’ll tell you right now that I’m gonna think I’m a better political director than my political director.” 

If true, Obama should have hired better speechwriters, policy directors, and political directors ASAP.

Two points:
Does Obama have a sense of humor about his egomania? For example, 
Just a few weeks ago, Obama was giving a speech when the actual presidential seal fell from the rostrum. “That’s all right,” he quipped. “All of you know who I am.” 

Now, that's not a bad ad-lib. I'm sometimes surprised by Obama's wit because Dreams from My Father is so self-serious. Still, I'm left wondering about whether Obama makes many second order jokes about his ego? (I don't watch TV news so I can't say.) Or does he take himself that seriously? You can't expect a President to be humble, but you can hope he'll be self-aware about his ego. Some of Obama's more egregious lines in Last's compendium could be taken as Obama mocking his own ego, but I haven't noticed that he does that. But I could be wrong.

The second point is that Obama's Smartest-Guy-in-the-Room syndrome is directly related to his being constantly seen by his admirers (including his Admirer-in-Chief, the President) as the Living Refutation of The Bell Curve. It's not a coincidence that just about the only exercise in national journalism Obama indulged in during the 1990s was to deliver on NPR in 1994 a commentary on The Bell Curve

Much of David Remnick's hagiography The Bridge, for instance, consists of smart Jewish people raving about how smart Obama is. He was the one they'd been waiting for to hold up as an example of a smart black guy, which, in turn, in the "He who says A must say B, C, and D" reasoning that dominates American intellectual life today, could be read to also imply the really important lesson of all this: that Jews aren't naturally smarter on average (so put away those pitchforks). 

I know this web of subliminal logic seems ridiculous when exposed to the light of day, but that's how a lot of important people feel.

The problem with all this investment in Obama's smartness as more than just a personal characteristic is that for any of minions to say to him, "No, Mr. President, you don't understand" or "Let me try to explain that more simply" is not just a personal and political insult, but is also a racial insult.


240 comments:

1 – 200 of 240   Newer›   Newest»
Steve Johnson said...

"He was the one they'd been waiting for to hold up as an example of a smart black guy, which, in turn, in the "He who says A must say B, C, and D" reasoning that dominates American intellectual life today, could be read to also imply the really important lesson of all this: that Jews aren't naturally smarter on average (so put away those pitchforks). "

Cue a Whiskey freakout in
3 ...
2 ...
1 ...
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Anonymous said...

I personally never found Obama to be that smart. I find his intellect to be slightly below average actually. Liberals obviously project what they want to see on Obama. But, conservatives seem to also say he's smart because they think it preserves their objectivity. To me he's just average or maybe even slightly below average.

Anonymous said...

My understanding was that Rahm Emanuel was the one advisor who would strongly disagree with him.

hailtoyou said...

smart Jewish people raving about how smart Obama is

I hereby nominate this for the next I-Steve "Summing-up U.S. political discourse in 10 words or less" contest.

Anonymous said...

John V Last said..."In this the United States was the guarantor of liberty and peace for the West; had we faltered, no corner of the world would have been safe from Soviet domination."

Whiskey, is that you?

nooffensebut said...

Here is a relevant example of Obama's ego. It comes from one of the earliest pieces that I read about him. When he thought no one was looking, the future president liked to draw pictures of himself.

George W. Bush was viciously attacked for his poor speaking ability, but he seemed to be demonstrating a quality lacking in Obama and most black people whom I have met: self-consciousness. Intelligence seems to intensify this manner of internalized thinking. I confess that the media has yet to convince me that Obama is truly intelligent. Politics is his job, but he could not stop himself from sounding like an idiot when he repeated the "heck of a job" gaffe, inspiring a comedian to call him, "dude," or when he endorsed Henry Louis Gates' assessment that Officer Crowley had committed racial profiling the moment he asked for identification. Attempting to illustrate an unfair power differential, Michael Eric Dyson pointed out that it took the Harvard professor and the first black president to go up against one white cop, yet that working-class white guy still politically outmaneuvered them. I know that there are smart black people, but I do not think that Obama is an example of one.

Anonymous said...

Another no-evidence inane hit-piece by you, Mr. Sailer.

Kevin said...

I'm still waiting for you to chime in on the Donovan McNabb/Mike Shanahan brouha. I do understand that presidents are important....

Dong Wang Koon Tang said...

Sailer, i think, really doesn't like Obama.
and it seems to be, almost personal....
when a large part of your cirtique is of "character."
i believe it is indeed personal.
what doe Steve Sailer see in Obama, he sees "narcissus"
he sees an african-american who has skated through life on the largesse of the majority white population
who has raised him as some kind of post-racial something something
in other words, Obama had it real easy
contrary to the conventional narrative of the struggle for black men, in fact, Obama has enjoyed tremendous
serendipity

Anonymous said...

Obama's real talent is how well he carries off being a wolf in sheep's clothing.

But, boy, do want to be suckered!

Anon.

Anonymous said...

Considering his predecessor was George W Bush, Obama seems highly intelligent indeed.

Can't agree with y'all on this topic, though I'm with you much of the rest of the time Steve.

Darwin's Sh*tlist said...

I've stated it here before, but it bears repeating: Obama's the flip-side of the Great White Defendant that Tom Wolfe wrote of in Bonfire of the Vanities. White liberals in positions of influence probably get tired of doling out favors to the over-privileged children of their well-connected friends. Someone like Obama, coming from a background that's both exotic and modest, is exactly the kind of person for whom the system is supposed to work.

Result: he's constantly being waved up to the next level based on his "promise" rather than his accomplishments. Like most beneficiaries of affirmative action (and, to be fair, those of the old-boy favor-bank, too), this never occurs to him. Hence, the ego.

Anonymous said...

"But, conservatives seem to also say he's smart because they think it preserves their objectivity."

Just as irritating to me, perhaps even more irritating, is the "You know, the President seems like a really nice, warm, friendly guy, even if I am in complete opposition to his policies" bit put forth by conservative pundits.

No. No, he doesn't seem like a "nice" guy at all. He seems like a smug, cold jerk most of the time. Now, what he actually *is* I wouldn't, couldn't know--but how can anyone honestly argue he "seems" warm?

Chicago said...

What has he done so far, besides getting himself elected, that would be an illustration of his great mind at work? So far it's Bush term three with affirmative action thrown in, that is all. He's verbally adroit when it comes to snookering part of the public; that's the sum total of his actual ability. He's a word man who has just become a tiresome windbag and now appears to have slipped into a state of ever growing self-infatuation.

Harry Baldwin said...

It's silly to say that Obama is of average or slightly below average intelligence, or that he can barely speak without a teleprompter, as some people claim. If you watched Obama at the beginning of this year when he single-handedly debated the House Republicans on health care, I can't believe you came away thinking he wasn't particularly bright. He may be a liar but he's not stupid.

However, he's also not brilliant. People on the left are always extolling the brilliance of Bill Clinton and Barack Obama, but it's hard for me to judge because neither ever says anything that isn't a cliche. Now, it may be that they understand that it's a mistake to stray from the boilerplate rhetoric, so they never reveal what they really think. However, when you hear people talk as much as we've all heard these two do, and you can't recall a single striking insight, it's hard to believe they have intellects comparable to that of a Daniel Patrick Moynihan.

The only Clintonisms that come to mind are "That depends on what the meaning of 'is' is," and "I did not have sexual relations with that woman, Miss Lewinsky." Obamaisms I can recall are "The police acted stupidly," and "You're nice enough, Hillary."

Truth said...

"I find his intellect to be slightly below average actually."

Yeah, there are lots of Harvard educated lawyers who have "slightly below average" intellects.

Anonymous said...

"Yeah, there are lots of Harvard educated lawyers who have 'slightly below average' intellects."

As many have said, he's verbally skillful, but there is no evidence of his being a thinker, one who can unravel complexities or one who can come up with creative solutions.

Many people in academia are like this, don't you agree?

Chris said...

Then there was that comment he made last week in India.

As Jake Tapper reported, Mr. Bhupendra Kansagra, founder of Spice Jet, greeted the president: “Welcome, Mr. President, to India. As a fellow Kenyan, I’m very proud to see that you have made . . .” at which point Mr. Obama interrupted to say “made something of myself.” Mr. Kansagra finished the sentence: “. . . India as the focus of your drive for exports out of the U.S.”

Anonymous said...

you are BS'ing a lot, do you realize that. You have no evidence for any of this but then you often don't evidence for many things.

YOu just "know" righT?

Anonymous said...

To me Obama's personality is, above all, boring. He says the most clichéd things imaginable - the sort of stuff that makes public service announcements about the dangers of whatever sound awful - in a really earnest voice.

He's an uncharismatic BSer. Bill Clinton was a charismatic BSer.

He's a BSer because content doesn't seem to matter to him when he's talking, only style does. But his style isn't even interesting.

As for his IQ, I find the 115-125 range plausible. Much below that a man wouldn't be able to form complicated grammatically-correct sentences as easily as he does. Much above that he wouldn't be so boring. You'd occasionally see signs of an unusual, eccentric take on the world beneath the platitudes.

Anonymous said...

Does Obama have a sense of humor about his egomania? For example,
Just a few weeks ago, Obama was giving a speech when the actual presidential seal fell from the rostrum. “That’s all right,” he quipped. “All of you know who I am.”

================================

I see that as just an innocent joke, dude. Maybe you're reading too much into it.

slyboots said...

@truth - yes, there are plenty of Harvard-educated lawyers who are slightly below average intellects. I know one personally. AA all the way.

Anonymous said...

I am not an Obama supporter, but it's ridiculous to deny that the man is pretty smart.

Anonymous said...

George W. Bush was viciously attacked for his poor speaking ability, but he seemed to be demonstrating a quality lacking in Obama and most black people whom I have met: self-consciousness.

Say what? What is a narcissist if not self-conscious?

Anonymous said...

"@truth - yes, there are plenty of Harvard-educated lawyers who are slightly below average intellects. I know one personally. AA all the way."

Below 98 IQ?

Yeah keep dreaming, broski.

Whiskey said...

Jews are not invested in theories of Magical Blackness because it makes Jews seem not smarter than average. Jews boast openly of how they are indeed smarter than average, and punch above their demographic weight in cultural and scientific and technology contributions. This is true from Woody Allen to Mel Brooks to Adam Sandler to Rob Schneider to Jerry Seinfeld. Jews are proud to be smarter on average, just ask them. Or listen.

Nope. Jews are so heavily invested in theories of magical Black guys because they are terminally, totally, SWPL. SWPL is that powerful. Heck Seinfeld was all about SWPL-ism. From George Costanza (Italian maybe) to Kramer to Jerry and Elaine (both characters Jewish). Both Seinfeld and Friends were the SWPL Bible in the 1990's.

Whiskey said...

And no I'm not Last. He was right though. There was no one else to keep Stalin and the Soviets from over-running Europe, Latin America, Africa, the Middle East, and the Far East. Britain was tottering, France done. And even the US was weak. Ike had nukes but nothing else, hence his pulling the plug on Suez (if nothing else a shameful betrayal of WWII allies). Under Soviet threats.

Just because Russia today is a joke, **mostly** and the USSR in it's near end fairly pathetic, does not mean that the days of the 1940's, the 1950's, the 1960's, were not full of danger.

nooffensebut said...

Holy GaGa! Steve, you have got to check out the new Atlantic article that attacks “the diversity excuse” by criticizing the educational performance of white American kids. It reminds me of Bush’s EPA announcing its endorsement of global warming science only to say that it was too late to do anything about it.

Whiskey said...

Obama is Black so he seems smarter than he is, the way say Wes Welker seems faster than he really is. Obama is about as warm, and as smart, as Richard Nixon. But because he's Black the public perception is that he's some great genius and warm personally.

And like Nixon, Obama has never had reality knocked into him. An abrupt reminder that he is not the center of the universe, about which all things hinge. At least Bush was aware that if he screwed up flying his fighter, even in peacetime in the US, he'd be dead. The model he flew was pretty notorious for killing inattentive pilots. [Pilots generally make poor leaders, however, because they don't delegate much until they get to squadron commander and get into teach/coach/lead mode. Your average Marine NCO does more leadership in half a day than most pilots like McCain and Bush did in the war. One exception: Pappy Boyington.]

Most of the old-line aristocrats served in wars, or dangerous summer occupations or jobs, or what have you to remind them of their mortality and fallibility. Bush recounts how he wanted to quit two weeks early a roustabout job in West Texas (it made his dad furious). I doubt Obama ever did anything slightly dangerous, or dirty, or muddy, or disgusting, or any kind really of manual labor or danger.

And THAT is dangerous. All Aristocrats worth their salt knew that danger -- the idea that the next generation would be unable to understand and communicate with those who do manual labor, and worse that they would grow to thinking themselves immune from danger and the center of the universe. A deadly habit for aristocrats with ever-present enemies.

tommy said...

that Jews aren't naturally smarter on average (so put away those pitchforks).

It's not an issue of smarts. Jews simply don't possess the wisdom of Solomon. (Solomon must have acquired from his Moabite ancestor, Ruth.)

Neither does Obama, I'm afraid. I'm sure he does well enough on IQ tests, but his is a sort of vacuous and uncreative intelligence. In terms of policy, he has done nothing beyond what I would expect of a staunch Democrat. He seems less thoughtful than Clinton, and Clinton wasn't exactly a president I would describe as an original thinker.

Anonymous said...

Slyboots' ridiculous comments underscore just how biased the Steve Sailer community is. Consider the following. Even though African American undergraduates at elite Ivy League universities have SAT scores significantly lower on average compared with the rest of the student body , their average scores are still vastly in excess of the SAT score of the average white American overall.

What Steve Sailer's readers have trouble doing is thinking in terms of statistical distributions, rather than in essentialist terms. The same problem also affects the way that liberals think about these issues.

I suspect that a lot of the proles who constitute the Sailer readership are just upset by the fact that the African American elite is smarter/more accomplish than themselves.

Simon in London said...

He's fairly intelligent, comfortably into three figures, probably comparable to John Kerry and George W Bush, so ca IQ 125 seems plausible; that's pretty typical for successful politicians. He's probably smarter than Sarah Palin. He doesn't seem as intelligent as Bill or Hillary Clinton, and many of his advisors are likely to be in the IQ 145 range (unless like George W he deliberately surrounded himself with incompetents) so his claim to be the smartest guy in the room does seem incredibly narcissistic.

adsfadsfasdf said...

Obama does have a kind of humility. In his own words, a 'PROFOUND HUMILITY'.

So, even his wit must be profound.

Anonymous said...

"Obama is about as warm, and as smart, as Richard Nixon."

As I understand it, Nixon was a rather brilliant man.

Black Sea said...

"Obama is about as warm, and as smart, as Richard Nixon."

Nixon's tested IQ was 143. I think this should give us all pause to consider that there is much more to the make up of a successful president than intelligence alone.

Anonymous said...

If Obama is such an egomaniac it's odd that he's so bad at thinking on his feet--literally. That to my mind is usually the difference between good public speakers and bad public speakers; poise is a function of self-confidence. When did he pick up this egomania? He seems to have been a wannabe most of his life.

Anonymous said...

The african american elite is a fabrication of aa. Until such time as it ends it is hardly prole jealousy to state and sure resent the obvious.

My cousin was telling me that when she was finishing up Harvard undergrad how she did not gain admittence to harvard med but several notably doltish blacks with lower credentials were admitted ahead. These were people who came to her for tutoring when thet struggled.

Prole resentment indeed.

Grumpy Old Man said...

He's rather typical of the Brazilian stereotype of the mulatto--striving and ambitious, insecure, not as smart as he thinks he is.

We trip over the "one drop rule"--he's not just a black guy. (a) He's African, not descended from slaves; (b) he comes from Bryan country and his mother was a hippie anthropologist, attracted to the exotic, no doubt thinking her own background was bland and boring.

Garland said...

"The second point is that Obama's Smartest-Guy-in-the-Room syndrome is directly related to his being constantly seen by his admirers (including his Admirer-in-Chief, the President) as the Living Refutation of The Bell Curve. It's not a coincidence that just about the only exercise in national journalism Obama indulged in during the 1990s was to deliver on NPR in 1994 a commentary on The Bell Curve."

But wait. you said in your book that you thought Obama probably had a similar view of blacks as you did. You didn't really elaborate but it seemed you meant in the Bell Curve sense. In what way does he see race the way you do?

Anonymous said...

As I understand it, Nixon was a rather brilliant man.

Nixon had a good 20 or 30 IQ points on the Bamster.

josh said...

"intellect to be slightly below average actually."

As a public school teacher, I interact with people with sub-100 IQs everyday. Even if Obama is not a deep thinker or an original thinker, there is no way he has an IQ below 100.

Toral said...

Crediting Charles Murray for the idea, I think it's a shame that Obama never had a serious interest in some form of difficult hard science, never had to confront the fact that there were some things he simply did not have the cognitive power to master no matter how hard he tried. That might have led him to make a more realistic assessment of his ability/IQ, which I suspect is at least 135 or so. As it is, there's been nobody in a position to tell him, and with the willingness to tell him, that he's not as smart as he thinks he is.

Anonymous said...

Steve Sailer is brilliant.

Who knew that Obama was spewing the usual egalitarian nonsense as far back as 1994?

The more I learn about this guy, the more I can't stand him. THankfully, it looks like the rest of the country - and the world - is in agreement with me.

Check out this new web site that exposes the New York Times :

crimesofthetimes.blogspot.com

Artur said...

Can anyone reading this offer proof that Bobby Jindal is an anchor baby?

I don't like Obama, but I dislike Jindal even more. Jindal's kind is even more dangerous than an Obama.

Anonymous said...

"I find his intellect to be slightly below average actually. Liberals obviously project what they want to see on Obama."

You clearly don't hang around with genuinely average people, God bless them. Obama strikes me as a little below average FOR GRADUATE SCHOOL.

Just shoot me said...

"Obamaisms I can recall are "The police acted stupidly," and "You're nice enough, Hillary."

And, don't forget, when asked his reaction to the midterm shellacking, this above-average intelligence replied, "I feel bad."

Soooooo, by that metric, that means all the five-year-olds in the schoolyard are above average, too. HEY! This IS Lake Woebegone.

Anonymous said...

"From George Costanza (Italian maybe) to Kramer to Jerry and Elaine (both characters Jewish). Both Seinfeld and Friends were the SWPL Bible in the 1990's".

The Elaine character wasn't Jewish, although in a sense all of them were stock Jewish characters out of Jewish comedy. Not that there's anything wrong with that.

Just shoot me said...

"Jews boast openly of how they are indeed smarter than average, and punch above their demographic weight in cultural and scientific and technology contributions. This is true from Woody Allen to Mel Brooks to Adam Sandler to Rob Schneider to Jerry Seinfeld"L

Didn't you know it's not allowed to start making lists of Jews?

Darwin said...

Steve, a very striking Obama self-revelation came in the health care summit with House Republicans mentioned by Harry Baldwin. In a long riff talking about his experience with his own auto insurer, Obama made clear that he competely misunderstands how auto insurance works.

As a fellow graduate of Obama's law school, I would say this would be highly unusual for someone who attended Harvard Law. Not because it is specifically taught there, but that Harvard lawyers generally have this type of legal/business awareness (as, I believe, would a majority of customers of Geico, State Farm or Allstate).

Not exactly a marker of IQ per se, but certainly an indication he does not know as much as he thinks.

Paul Mendez said...

There seems to be a problem on this thread caused by a lack of a common definition for "smart."

High IQ?

Wise?

Well Educated?

Verbally Talented?

Mathematically Talented?

Creative?

Before Galileo, there were astronomers who could predict the movement of the planets with great precision using an earth-centric model of complicated circles-within-circles. They were both "smart" and "wrong."

Barack Obama strikes me as way above-average in education and verbal ability. Above average in IQ, although not blindingly so. But far below average in wisdom and creativity.

George Bush may not be a great orator, but could Barack Obama learn to fly an F-102?

Anonymous said...

Simon in London said: "He's fairly intelligent, comfortably into three figures, probably comparable to John Kerry and George W Bush, so ca IQ 125 seems plausible; that's pretty typical for successful politicians. He's probably smarter than Sarah Palin. He doesn't seem as intelligent as Bill or Hillary Clinton, and many of his advisors are likely to be in the IQ 145 range (unless like George W he deliberately surrounded himself with incompetents) so his claim to be the smartest guy in the room does seem incredibly narcissistic."

I agree, except that I wouldn't say he's "probably" smarter than Palin. I'd say he's definitely the smarter of the two.

Harvard Law School of course engages in affirmative action, but it gets to pick from the creme de la creme of black applicants. Just as HLS accepts white and Asian students from only the top two percentiles on the LSAT, it accepts black students from only the top two percentiles on the LSAT among blacks. And the LSAT is pretty well correlated with IQ. HLS doesn't need to reach below 115-120 to get the student diversity it wants, and it certainly doesn't want to risk cheapening its brand.

- JP98

Harry Baldwin said...

Whiskey said...Obama is about as warm, and as smart, as Richard Nixon.
And like Nixon, Obama has never had reality knocked into him.


Whiskey, you surprise me. Are you too young to remember Nixon? He was a very intelligent man. AFAIK, he actually wrote the books published under his name, which were regarded as serious contributions in the foreign-policy area at the time.

Also, since when did Nixon not have reality knocked into him before becoming president? Unfortunately, one of the realities that was knocked into him by his questionable, Chicago-based loss to Kennedy, was that politics is a dirty game and following the rules is for losers.

I think those who guess Obama's IQ to be between 115-125 are probably correct. He's certainly smart enough to be president, it's just that he's so ideological he seems impervious to evidence. I'm quite sure he's smarter than Palin, whom I'd put at 100, tops.

Anonymous said... Say what? What is a narcissist if not self-conscious?

In this context, self-consciousness is the awareness of how one's words and actions are seen by others. A sort of objectivity. Obama doesn't seem to have this--he seems at times arrogant, boastful, petulant, and self-pitying, not impressions a leader usually wants to project. He seems too self-impressed to care about it.

Tom V said...

(Barely) Anonymous:

Slyboots' ridiculous comments [sic] underscore just how biased the Steve Sailer community is.

And yours, Yan Shen, underscores how vacuous the Asian community is. Nay, the human race. Nay, kingdom Animalia. At least!

Away, troll! Leave this prole community and its prole discussions before they taint you. After all, proletarianism is most yucky (far more so than blackness!).

Bill said...

Whiskey says . . .
And like Nixon, Obama has never had reality knocked into him.

Even Whiskey's offhand comments are delusional. Nixon was born in Yorba Linda(!!), where he and his family were dirt poor. Here is a quote from Wikipedia illustrating how insulated from reality Richard Nixon was: "Richard's younger brother Arthur died in 1925 after a short illness, and his older brother Harold, whom Richard greatly admired, died of tuberculosis in 1933" Despite qualifying for an exemption, he volunteered to serve in WWII.

Here's another fun quote illustrating both Nixon's insulation from reality and his average intellect: "Richard was offered a scholarship to Harvard, but his family lacked the money for him to travel to and live in the East"

In his very first political campaign (for US House), he "waged a campaign which ended in a victory over the five-term Democratic incumbent Jerry Voorhis" He fought (sometimes winning and sometimes losing) ugly, highly competitive campaigns for Senate, for CA governor, and for US President.

I defy anyone to read his Wiki entry or any of his several biographies and come away believing that he was not both very smart and deeply in touch with reality.

Furthermore, Nixon is not "like" Obama in any significant way at all. His geneology, for example, is fascinating. Virtually all of his ancestors, back to the 18th Century, were born in the US.

Now, why would Whiskey have such obviously false, unflattering views of his fellow Scotch-Irishman, Richard Nixon?

Anonymous said...

Whiskey,
I've been waiting for at least a year now.

When are you finally going to expound on your people, the Scots-Irish?

nooffensebut said...

Say what? What is a narcissist if not self-conscious?

I do not agree. Narcissism can actually be an Axis II personality disorder characterized by grandiosity and a lack of acknowledgement of personal imperfections, among other symptoms. Self-consciousness implies critical self-assessment. Self-consciousness can fall under the NEO Personality Inventory category of neuroticism. Personality disorders are associated with lower IQ, but I can find no studies relating neuroticism to IQ. I suspect that many mental problems are associated with low IQ because they would not be problems if the individual were intelligent enough to compensate for them. In the case of PTSD, high IQ seems to prevent the disease.

Kylie said...

"I suspect that a lot of the proles who constitute the Sailer readership are just upset by the fact that the African American elite is smarter/more accomplish[sic] than themselves."

I can't speak for anyone else. (And I'm not sure why I'm even bothering to speak to someone who claims the readership here is a bunch of "proles".)

But in my case, I'm upset when African-Americans are lauded for being smart and accomplished when anyone with half a brain and one eye can see that they are not (e.g., Michelle Obama's notoriously clumsy thesis).

The smarter man I ever knew in person was black. The greater opera singer in the world is black. The most gifted blues singer in the world was black. The list goes on and on.

But please don't insult my intelligence (which really is above average) by pointing to every, or even most, black recipients of AA as smart or accomplished. I am never upset by genuine intelligence or accomplishments. I'm tired of people fawning over those who've taken baby steps as though these toddlers have just run a marathon.

slyboots said...

The Anonymous who criticized my comment is somewhat in the right - I was thinking (although not expressing this thought, as I sort of lazily assumed that it would be understood as a given), that Obama, as well as the personal acquaintance of mine who is, like him, a Harvard-educated lawyer, is below average in intellect for what you'd expect of a person with the same educational descriptor.

He seems to me to be certainly at least 1 sigma above average for the population as a whole, but below average for an elite .

Anonymous said...

Larison's reaction to Last's article was very different. Are you guys on a different page now, or is he just being nitpicky, as is his wont?

Tanstaafl said...

OBAMA AND THE JEWS: A look at why some Jews love him and some don't trust him; and at the key role Chicago Jews played in getting him to where he is Chicago Jewish News - Jewish Chicago's Hometown Newspaper, 24 November 2008.

Barack Obama: The first Jewish president? - Chicago Tribune, 12 December 2008.

Black Death said...

Nobody has commented on Obama's 1994 NPR interview with Noah Adams, which I found fascinating, so here goes.

"Racial supremacists have been using IQ tests to support their theories since the turn of the century"

So those who believe in HBD are racial supremacists. Nothing new here from a liberal perspective.

"Scientists have repeatedly told us that genes don't vary much from one race to another"

True, most genes don't vary much between races or even between closely related species, but it doesn't take much variation in certain areas (such as the genes that code for intelligence). Of course, Obama has never probably never taken a college-level science course in his life, but he's still an expert in this area.

"psychologists have pointed out the role that language and other cultural barriers can play in depressing minority test scores, and no one disputes that children whose mothers smoke crack when they're pregnant are going to have developmental problems."

Again, yes, but the effects persist even when controlled for things such as maternal drug use.

"But Mr. Murray isn't interested in prevention. He's interested in pushing a very particular policy agenda"

An ad hominem attack on Murray. And it looks like it's Obama who's pushing an agenda.

"Mr. Murray has apparently decided that white America is ready for a return to good old-fashioned racism so long as it's artfully packaged and can admit for exceptions like Colin Powell. It's easy to see the basis for Mr. Murray's calculations"

Another ad hominem attack, coupled with the usual leftist charge of "racism!."




"But I do think Mr. Murray's right about the growing distance between the races. The violence and despair of the inner city are real. So's the problem of street crime."

For once we agree, although I wonder who is responsible for most of the violence and street crime in inner-cities?

"For blacks, that means taking greater responsibility for the state of our own communities. Too many of us use white racism as an excuse for self-defeating behavior. Too many of our young people think education is a white thing and that the values of hard work and discipline andself-respect are somehow outdated."

Again we agree! A ray of sunshine in an otherwise dark landscape. But stay tuned.

"Real opportunity would mean quality prenatal care for all women and well-funded and innovative public schools for all children."

The public schools of Newark, NJ, with a student body that is 92% NAM, spend about $22,000 per student per year and yet have a dropout rate of 70%. Are these schools not well-funded?

"It's not the result of an intellectual deficit. It's the result of a moral deficit."

Now we get to the heart of the matter. All the problems of minorities, all the violence, drugs, crime, illegitimacy, poor educational attainment, high unemployment, all are the result of a moral deficit, not individual bad choices. And the moral deficit lies within (white) society at large - it's all whitey's fault. Why, if we just spent more money, all of these problems would vanish, as if by magic. Whatta deal! This is vintage Obama at its best. nyone who wants to know how this man thinks should read it.

lesley said...

"As for his IQ, I find the 115-125 range plausible. Much below that a man wouldn't be able to form complicated grammatically-correct sentences as easily as he does. Much above that he wouldn't be so boring. You'd occasionally see signs of an unusual, eccentric take on the world beneath the platitudes."

Coming from his background, eccentric comes naturally. It doesn't represent any orignal thought.

Perhaps because it's scary to think how dumb most of the world is, people have a really inflated idea of what IQ it takes to seem intelligent. Prince Charles supposedly has an IQ of 103 (sorry, I can't remember where I read that, but it's plausible); he's not known for brilliance, and yet I have heard him talk extemporaneously about architecture (a passion of his) with an articulateness and precision I haven't heard from many college professors. He knows his history too. I guess he has been so surrounded by well-spoken people he is performing at maximum capacity in this particular way. But he's just one example. IQ 100 is average, 110 is already exceptional. Anybody of at least average intellect can be trained to seem of managerial capacity if they get a lot of support. We have people with IQs of 100 graduating as medical doctors, thanks to AA.
POTUS doesn't do or say anything that requires much more than that. The constant use of the teleprompter and his fumbling extemporaneous attempts should tell you that much. I think they are trying to keep him out of Washington right now. Whoever's is running this mess, he doesn't really help their cause much right now.
As for he being smart because he graduated from Harvard--oh come on.

Udolpho.com said...

What is the point of trying to guesstimate Barry's IQ? We don't have enough of his academic record to go on. Dubya himself is proof that how someone comes off in conversation or debate is a very unreliable indicator of IQ. That is why we have tests instead of just asking morons on the Internet to give it their best shot.

He was a C student at Columbia, or so I've heard, but even that doesn't tell us much by itself--maybe he was floundering or bored or railing lines of coke off some white chick's ass the whole time.

He does seem to be very insecure in the way that half-blacks often are. And I'm pretty sure that no matter how smart he is, he thinks that he is about one SD smarter.

Many of the commenters here seem unaware that minorities of Obama's type--resentful, grievance-oriented, racially conflicted--learn to pass as smart among whites. They regurgitate a few rhetorical tricks knowing that, just as with a talking dog, the element of surprise will get them through a tight spot. Once you start noticing it, it becomes impossible to not notice.

Given Obama's serious lack of experience before getting his current job, it's not too surprising that nothing he's said is impressive or indicative of brains. It still blows me away that the public had no problem electing a guy with none of the requisite experience to do this job, beyond the ability to be as black as his skin tone would allow.

Truth said...

"@truth - yes, there are plenty of Harvard-educated lawyers who are slightly below average intellects. I know one personally. AA all the way."

Was that the one who handled your lawsuit when you sued your employer after getting burnt by hot french fry oil?


"I doubt Obama ever did anything slightly dangerous,"

Sure he did, he walked around inner city Chicago telling people to "get out and vote" while dressed like Cliff Huxtable.

And BTW, Nixon was probably the most effective president of our lifetimes, and one of only two who was not a complete puppet of the last 50 years.

Anonymous said...

Since Obama is half white and primarily raised by white grandparents, maybe he should be considered white rather than black.

Camlost said...

I suspect that a lot of the proles who constitute the Sailer readership are just upset by the fact that the African American elite is smarter/more accomplish than themselves.

LOL, so this is why Obama has been so forthcoming with his grades and test scores.

And what exactly has the "African American elite" accomplished outside of AA Professorships or government sinecures awarded solely on the basis of blackness?

Beyond Thomas Sowell and John McWhorter you don't find many black intellectuals with credentials beyond "Hey, I'm black."

Claverhouse said...

tommy said:


It's not an issue of smarts. Jews simply don't possess the wisdom of Solomon. (Solomon must have acquired from his Moabite ancestor, Ruth.)


I'm not wholly certain about the great wisdom of anyone who suggests cutting a baby in half to sus out the real mother.



*blank, uncertain looks all around the court: "You said what sire ?" politely*

Anonymous said...

Completely off topic...I just read that Van Damme is gona fight the Muay Thai World champ to redeem himself. The 50 year-old coke head has finally gone mad. I just hope that Van Damme is winning the fight and then the guy throws salt in his eyes and he has to win Great White Dragon style. Lmao....VAN DAMME IS GONA KICK ASS AND TAKE NAMES!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Dahinda said...

Obama only became famous because he was able to make big glowing speeches that made him sound like the second coming of JFK. He hit all of the right notes and it turned into a really great sales pitch for Barack Obama. He is an eloquent Billy Mays!

riches said...

Whiskers was right about this:

I saw a PBS program about tv comics in which Melvin Brooks looked straight into the camera to say that he and his are better and smarter than Germans.

Not exactly pitchfork shy.

Off topic: SWPL vol.2 is out any day.

Anonymous said...

I suppose it's too much to expect an apology. I wrote a number of comments on this blog years ago in which I mentioned that Obama didn't seem to be all that smart. Now I find that the world is once again catching up with me. Two years ago there were no sceptical comments about Obama's brain power in the national media. Last night Bill Reilly defended Obama's intellectual credentials by pointing out that he had been the Editor of the Harvard Law Review.

This event demonstrates two things. First O'Reilly - maybe the only politician in America who is better than Obama - wants to appear "fair and balanced" and secondly, O'Reilly apparently has never read about how Obama was chosen for that job.

I mark yesterday as a milestone. I expect that from now on you will be hearing more doubts in the media about Obama's intellect. These doubts will be tentative and will be stated with great equivocation - but they will come. I expect the braver media heads to begin to say things like "If he is so smart why has he done all these dumb things?" Why indeed?

Obama acts like a typical black guy. It is well known that Asians are smart and Blacks aren't. Yet Asians have low self confidence and tend to underestimate their fine qualities while Blacks typically overestimate their's. Blacks are awash in self esteem.

Obama was bred to his conception of self in much the same way Prince Charles was. Charles - a man of very ordinary abilities - has been told all his life that he was special. It's hardly surprising that he came to believe it.

Norman Mailer once wrote about the pleasures of speaking ideological cant. He recognized that if you adopted a cryto-Marxist mind set you could react instantly to any question or speak on any topic with no mental effort. You could be glib and facile. You could give the impression that you had been thinking whereas you had been merely reciting.

There are plenty of clues. The brief passage that you cited by Obama about "The Bell Curve" is instructive. It is completely free of any quantitative insight. The book itself has hundreds of pages of charts and graphs yet Obama ignores all that and gives out with a simplistic formulaic response. These arguments by rote are nowadays called "talking points".

Talking points are follower arguments - created by leaders who can think and provided to followers so they don't have to.

I once took the Stanford-Binet IQ test. That's an individual not a group test. You sit with the tester and answer questions one on one for a couple hours. At the end the tester comes up with a number. I took this test as an obligation to the Psychology Department. I was helping a graduate student gain experience. Many people think that they can judge IQ by simple observation without training or practice. They then try to gauge the smarts of politicians who have years of experience at at fooling the public and staffs of image consultants. Good luck.

We know for example that Bill Clinton staged elaborate ruses to convince the press that he was super smart. Clinton to this day retains a reputation as having been particularly clever He like Obama has hidden his group IQ scores so as to to be able to fool the public into judging his brains on criteria and in settings that he controls.

The "Albertosaurus Correction" states that if you don't know their test scores, their IQ is 15 points lower than you think it is.

Albertosaurus

BamaResident said...

"Slyboots' ridiculous comments underscore just how biased the Steve Sailer community is. Consider the following. Even though African American undergraduates at elite Ivy League universities have SAT scores significantly lower on average compared with the rest of the student body , their average scores are still vastly in excess of the SAT score of the average white American overall."

Eh, I know a black guy who got into Yale with a 28 ACT score. That's pretty good and admittedly a good 6-7 points above the average, but myself along with the majority of my friends scored higher and we all attend large southern state schools. I seriously doubt any of us could have gotten into Yale.

David Axelrod said...

Obama seems to have a curious mix of gifts and limitations.

It's doubtful he's naturally gifted with a high-IQ. Obama had nearly every advantage in life:

* An enriched childhood with intensive parenting by his academic mother and sharp grandparents

* a degree from one of the most prestigious prep schools in the West

* a killer college applicant profile as an interesting multicultural affirmative action candidate who lived years abroad

* a Harvard PhD father whose tribe was one of the big power brokers in pro-Western Kenya and another father in working for American oil interests in Indonesia

Even with all this, Obama didn't get into a prestigious school of the sort he later transferred into as soon as he could. Even this transfer to was to a second rate Ivy and done under mysterious circumstances (no grades, no one remembers him at Columbia, etc).

I've never met anyone of the intelligence ascribed to Obama who didn't consistently crush IQ-like tests such as the PSAT, SAT or GRE. Even the biggest potheads I've know who are that bright kill these exams without any prep. Obviously Obama didn't do this according to his yearbook omissions as a National Merit Student (PSAT) and Clairmont College acceptance (SAT).

Obama also appears extremely lazy, unaccomplished and incurious given the positions he's held in life. Not a single law article published despite being offered tenure at UChi. Nothing of note accomplished and several dramatic failures as a community activist, IL state legislature, US Senator and chair of the $100M Annenburg Challenge.

More recently, Obama has played more golf rounds in 2yrs than BushII in 8yrs and perhaps has set a record for vacation during the worst crises since the great depression. He can't even fake interest.

As to Obama's incuriousness, he failed to learn Indonesian despite spending 4yrs there as a child when kids absorb language naturally with any effort at all. He appears ignorant and uninterested in anything unconnected to race-based "social justice" like budgets, economics, foreign policy, etc.

The quotes given suggest that he has limitation of self-awareness, self-criticism and a drive for self-improvement because he is a legend in his own mind. For example, the cause of the Dems midterm election failure? Nothing to do with pushing the edge of liberal American policies to a new limit, but rather the ignorance of the voters who failed to comprehend his message.

Obama no doubt has a verbal fluency disproportionately greater than his general intelligence factor "g" much like Jessie Jackson and Al Sharpton. However, Obama's cultural elite academic upbringing by reserved WASPs gives him the restraint and discipline to largely stay on message and avoid the numerous gaffes that expose the intentions and limited intellect of Jackson and Sharpton.

His laziness and indifference to most issues prevent him from having any internal conflicts in channeling the teleprompter words of others. The only times Obama's bumptious mask has slipped due to self-revealing passion is on race issues: disparaging ignorant gun and bible clinging crackers in flyover, claiming Sgt. Crawley acting stupidly without knowing anything about the case and recently encouraging Hispanics to punish white enemies.

For the people behind Obama, he's the perfect empty vessel. Just humor his out-sized arrogance, let him relax on the back 18 and toss him the race bone. They can feed Obama whatever words they want via the teleprompter. On every level possible, he really doesn't care.

Svigor said...

As I understand it, Nixon was a rather brilliant man.

True, but the comparison was not apt. Nixon was a cerebral introvert who willed himself into presidential mold. Kinda the opposite of AA.

I can't hold forth on Obama's IQ because every time I hear him speak he's got the teleprompter. He won't release his grades or test scores. Maybe if I watched TV I'd hear him speak without the teleprompter, but I don't. He is famous for the uh-uh-ah-uh-uh-uh-uh-ah thing without it, though. Point is, his Harvard education means nothing to me, except that Harvard credentialed him. But that's not really a proxy for IQ when it comes to NAMs, is it? Harvard's as corrupt as the rest of them when it comes to AA.

I know one thing; if I was a smart guy, with high test scores, and people were arguing over whether I was a genius or an empty suit, I'd lay the psychometrics or the SAT or whatever on them. If I was punching way above my weight, because I had a 24/7 teleprompter crew, speechwriters, AA, PC, a friendly media, etc., I wouldn't.

On the other hand, it's hard to imagine him saying something like "I know my wonks' specializations better than they do" without having an IQ high enough to fool himself that he does (a number brought down considerably by his black genes and the PC white deference Sailer deftly describes). I'd say 115-125 is as reasonable an estimate as any.

But put all of this together and you get a guy who thinks he's way smarter than he is, who's way too used to taking advantage of white hopes and fears (without knowing that's what's going on), and who doesn't inspire respect at all in critical thinkers.

Anonymous said...

OK, granted, Obama is very bright, especially compared with some of his predecessors who set the bar very low. But so what? He's just a spineless corporate puppet who has never had an original idea in his life. His job is to be the ceremonial head of a country that's outwardly strong, militaristic and increasingly belligerent while rotting on the inside. A babel of multi-culty chaos, less available employment for the lower middle classes, a decadent and corrupt culture, a permanent warfare state combined with an increasing domestic police state to keep the lid on, will lead to an eventual implosion. He's there to manage the decline while those in a position to do so steal all they can while the stealing is still good.

Svigor said...

As Jake Tapper reported, Mr. Bhupendra Kansagra, founder of Spice Jet, greeted the president: “Welcome, Mr. President, to India. As a fellow Kenyan, I’m very proud to see that you have made . . .” at which point Mr. Obama interrupted to say “made something of myself.” Mr. Kansagra finished the sentence: “. . . India as the focus of your drive for exports out of the U.S.”

Ahahahahaahaahaaa! Now that's telling. Just perfect!

Svigor said...

Nope. Jews are so heavily invested in theories of magical Black guys because they are terminally, totally, SWPL. SWPL is that powerful. Heck Seinfeld was all about SWPL-ism. From George Costanza (Italian maybe) to Kramer to Jerry and Elaine (both characters Jewish). Both Seinfeld and Friends were the SWPL Bible in the 1990's.

So "SWPL" is Whiskey code for "Jewish, or Judeo-formed European." Okay, sure, I can buy that.

(as if yuppies are playing the tune, and Jews are dancing to it - hilarious!)

dsfasdfasdf said...

"And like Nixon, Obama has never had reality knocked into him."

I think the problem with Nixon was he had too much reality knocked into him all his life. Obama is someone whose every lie is covered up or deemed as the highest truth by the media. But every one of Nixon's lies--and there were many--were exposed by media for all to see.
Obama is the ultimate darling of media; Nixon was the ultimate villain in the eyes of the media. And Nixon was power-hungry but no narcissist. He might have loathed himself less if he had a bit of narcissism in him.

Anonymous said...

Jewish store owners ("diamond merchants") and rental property owners ("slumlords") have traditionally had bad relations with the blacks in their neighborhood. I assume a lot of their kids and grandkids now want to atone by finding a respectable black guy and giving him lots of power. Which isn't such a bad instinct, but doesn't really solve our problems.

By the way, I used the quotations to indicate what many blacks think of the local Jewish storeowner/propert owner. Not what I think.

Obama is clearly a very smart guy. I don't know his exact IQ, but he's smarter than Kerry and vastly moreso than Bush, who are not at all intelligent. You don't get into Harvard and become the Harvard Review editor without having something going on upstairs.

As for Palin, she's not at all smart and also not particularly hardworking. I don't dislike her, but I don't envision her as president either.

Romney is Obama's equal.

Svigor said...

Whiskey's "yuppies play the tune, and Jews dance to it" thing is great.


Whites must be criticized
Jews must not be criticized
The very idea of white ethnostates is evil
Actual Jewish ethnostates are okay
White history is all black hats
Jewish history is all white hats
Jews are white when they want, and not when they don't
Whites have to pay for being white


It was very nice of yuppies to write the rules in line with Jewish interests, and against their own. Cui bono? What's that, Latin for "I love U2?"

LOL.

Oh, and Whiskey's not Jewish.

LOL x2.

asdfadfasfa said...

Not all narcissisms are the same. There is the earnest and the ironic. Tom Cruise is a very earnest narcissist, a Scientologist true believer who's fallen for all the gushy crap fed to him by his handlers.
There is an element of this in Obama. He too has been praised and patted on the back so often that he's full of himself. But, two things make him more ironic and hipsterish.
One is leftist politics with its emphasis on deceit, subversion, and trickery; Obama is well-read-and-practiced in this duplicitous mindset.
Also, being black--biologically and culturally--, he's more into that jazzy, slickity-slack, hoodwink the squares mentality. As the character says in COOLEY HIGH, "I can lie and steal too good not to survive." This is part of being black, the ability to see and think through the corner of one's eyes. In an instinctive way, this keeps some black people more alert and suspicious of what's going on. If SWPL whites are full of goodwill and earnestness when dealing with blacks, blacks act nice and kind--'don't make sudden moves'--to play the game. Whites are goody goody, blacks are badass. Obama has this quality, so he's not an earnest narcissist like Cruise. But he's a double narcissist because he thinks he's the perfect New Man and because he thinks he's above it all(as a slick jazzy dude who can see through the BS). He has the narcissism of an angel and of the devil.
Though there are many differences among Jews and blacks, they have one thing in common which makes them kinda understand either. Neither community is earnest and sincere; they both understand the game of 'trick whitey' whether it's Marx Brothers pulling a fast one or Jazz musicians running circles around 'lame' white tunes.
When Jews praise Obama, it's different than when whites do it. White liberals are sincere gushers, but Jews are playing a game. Obama is smart enough to know this and play it for all it's worth.

Narcissism is related to megalomania but not always. Personal narcissists think highly of themselves but wanna be left alone in their own world, but public narcissists wanted to be admired and adored by everyone; they turn into megalomaniacs, and Obama is definitely a megalomaniac. Even when he jokes about himself, he's not really joking but only letting on that he's not only supergreat but too cool to fuss over it--and indeed why should he when the media do it for him? All megalomaniacs put on a show of being a regular guy. Even Mao had photo-ops working with poor peasants, and Mussolini knew well enough to kiss babies and mingle with the masses once in awhile. After all, the hero of the the West is Jesus, God who came to us man.

Obama is also a narcissist in a racial sense. He sees himself and is promoted by Jews as the starchild of the future. If the racial ideal for America is supposed to be interracism, then Obama is supposed to remind us that race mixing leads to a person of great charisma, handsomeness, intelligence, wisdom, etc, etc.
I dunno, he seems like a pukesville kid to me.

adsfasdfasdf said...

"Slyboots' ridiculous comments underscore just how biased the Steve Sailer community is. Consider the following. Even though African American undergraduates at elite Ivy League universities have SAT scores significantly lower on average compared with the rest of the student body , their average scores are still vastly in excess of the SAT score of the average white American overall."

This is prolly true of someone like Obama but just how did Michelle make it to Princeton and Harvard?

And how many blacks are Ivy League schools are blews or blites(Blacks with Jewish or white blood)?

headache said...

I suspect that a lot of the proles who constitute the Sailer readership are just upset by the fact that the African American elite is smarter/more accomplish than themselves.

hahahahahaha, as a white South African watching the US-installed black Elite f.u. the country that sounds like a sick joke. At least the Mandela crowd have now realized that they are too stupid to run the structures left behind by the whites, so they are importing Indians to do the thinking. They will do anything not to have to admit that whitey did a better on of running the country.
I suspect its the same in the US.

Anonymous said...

The Elaine character wasn't Jewish, although in a sense all of them were stock Jewish characters out of Jewish comedy. Not that there's anything wrong with that.

Nothing wrong other than the fact that Jewish "comedy" isn't funny?

Steve Sailer said...

Prince Charles on modern architecture can be hilarious. I've plagiarized some of his one liners for years.

Anonymous said...

Some of you guys need to read the handful of known non-Ayers/non-Favreau works in the Obama "corpus".

The guy is a blithering idiot.

Your problem* is that you have only ever seen him read Axelrod script from a teleprompter - if left to his own devices, I doubt that he could reliably walk and chew [nicotine] gum at the same time.



*Well, that and the fact that - for whatever reason - you lack the curiosity to pursue the matter any further.

Anonymous said...

One of the markers for sociopathy is that sociopaths are sometimes very witty, but NEVER self-deprecating.

Obama has a sense of humor, but not about himself.

With very important friends in the right places, any reasonably bright person can get into the Ivy League. Obama was probably a very mediocre undergrad, with very good test scores for a black male. He had important people advocating for him to be admitted to Harvard Law School, and that combined with his "potential" as measured by the LSATs was enough to get him in. (A white person with crappy grades and no pull would never have been considered.)

I agree with the previous poster who mentioned Michelle Obama's academic career at Princeton and Harvard. Whatever talents Barack Obama may have, it is a matter of record that Michelle's high school guidance counselor told her that her high school grade point average and SATs were far too low for her to be seriously considered by the Ivy League, and yet SHE GOT IN. Without Affirmative Action, most blacks couldn't get anywhere.

Anonymous said...

Steve Sailer, most of your readers are an utter bore. Do you have any readers who can think in terms of statistical distributions, rather than simple essentialist terms? We really need to move beyond the white = good, black = bad dichotomy in our discourse here.

Like I always say, a white nationalist is someone who astutely realizes that IQ 90 Hispanics out-breeding the rest of the population is a bad thing, but somehow seems to think it's not a problem when IQ 90 whites out-breed the rest of the population.

Truth Squad said...

"Oh, and Whiskey's not Jewish."

He is "Scots-Irish."

Don't you know that all Scots-Irish types are fanatical about Israel and will defend the good name of Jews anywhere on the internet at the drop of a hat?

\end of sarcasm.

Anonymous said...

Oops, did not realise that 'American Narcissus' was the title of the linked article by J V.


Obama 's like Blair magnified. Just hope he does not do as much n damage the USA as much holy Tony did to the UK.

RB

London

Bill said...

Paul Mendez sets off my pet peeve thus . . .

Before Galileo, there were astronomers who could predict the movement of the planets with great precision using an earth-centric model of complicated circles-within-circles. They were both "smart" and "wrong."

Heliocentrism (the theory that the sun is at the center of the solar system) was:
1. Invented by the ancient Greeks
2. Mathematized by Copernicus
3. Vastly improved by Brahe&Kepler
4. Explained by Newton
5. Finally proved by Bessel

Galileo had dick to do with it. He made zero scientific contributions to the debate over Heliocentrism. He was a great physicist and astronomer, but not in this area.

Anonymous said...

Murkowski, however, took this thought into overkill, portraying herself as a beleaguered victim of male chauvinism. She sent out a flier with a picture of a noble-looking woman being screamed at by a mean guy with a bullhorn.

“For all the times you have been overruled — when you know you had the right ideas and solutions,” it read. “For all the times your accomplishments have been ignored while others who scream and yell get the credit ... This vote for Lisa Murkowski is a vote for you, too.” It then described attack ads that called Murkowski “a princess” as “what women have been dealing with for centuries.”




here we have a Republican woman senator playing the woman-grievance card.

linsee said...

Obama was one of the speakers at the September 2004 convention of the National Conference of Editorial Writers, held in Chicago, when he was running for the U.S. Senate. (A last-minute replacement for Studs Terkel, who had to cancel because of illness.) He was clearly smart, and quite engaging, even though I disagreed with nearly everything he said. His 15-20 minute stump speech was quite good (no teleprompters, but of course he had delivered it many times by then). In the 20-25 minute Q&A, though, he fell down badly. He didn't seem to have thought about the issues he was asked about, or even to know very much about them .I came away with the impression that he was smart enough, but an intellectual lightweight. I think his performance as president has borne out that impression. (Most of the audience, as you would expect, thought he was wonderful.)

The 1994 column about The Bell Curve is appalling. Not only because it's an intellectually dishonest ad hominem attack on Murray, but because he doesn't appear to have read the book (which doesn't say what he claims it does), only the very hostile commentary about it.

Anonymous said...

"As a public school teacher, I interact with people with sub-100 IQs everyday. Even if Obama is not a deep thinker or an original thinker, there is no way he has an IQ below 100."

I too was a public school teacher for over 30 years. I am the one who said he seems to have verbal skills but that there seems no evidence of deep or creative thinking.

Based on his unscripted interviews, I'd estimate his IQ at about 135-140. I have taught many such kids. They were placed in accelerated classes early in their education. Lots of kids who score well above average on IQ tests never develop the people skills necessary to be good politicians.

Politics is the art of persuasion. Other than the early ability to convince voters he could give a good speech, he has not demonstrated since any political skills that derive from social skills or creative thinking. What power he has wielded is the result of the Democratic majority in the Congress rather than the result of any powers of persuasion. In fact, like Nixon, his personality actually seems to erode his political capital.

Truth said...

"I know one thing; if I was a smart guy, with high test scores, and people were arguing over whether I was a genius or an empty suit, I'd lay the psychometrics or the SAT or whatever on them."

Yes, Svigggey, but "I" is the optimal word there. And why would you take the above track, and Barry take the one he has? Simple, because you are an insecure man who feels that he has something to prove. My feeling is that because Obama is already the president, and he does not give-a-shit about naysayers.

Truth said...

"Without Affirmative Action, most blacks couldn't get anywhere.

You haven't gotten anywhere, so I guess it's somewhat universal.

Anonymous said...

I love that you idiots are still repeating the canard that Obama can't speak without a teleprompter, nearly a year after he walked into the Republican leadership conference and verbally destroyed them, speaking extemporaneously the entire time. The beating was so complete that the Republicans have been whining ever since about how Obama "ambushed" them, even when there are published statements by them in advance about how much they were looking forward to a British-style "Question Time" with the President.

Truth is right-- a goodly chunk of you are just stupid, jealous little boys. Note that Steve himself is too bright to subscribe to the "Obama is stupid" idea. He just thinks he's a narcissist. Which is in all likelihood true, though how that distinguishes Obama from anyone else with the required craziness to look at the title of President of the United States and say "hey, I could do that better than anyone else" is a mystery to me.

Whiskey said...

Let me add, Obama is not a good politician.

He failed to make deals with Republicans when he could, early, and sacrifice some minor objectives to get them on board with the Stimulus, with the Auto company takeovers, with ObamaCare, and with Dodd-Frank. Thus he owned completely success and failure, and that was a bad call. Because his downside (the legislation blows up) was predictable and not hedged (he got Republicans on board, no way they can point at his ownership).

That was stupid.

Next, he failed to get Sen. Kyle, a key Republican Senator, on board early with START whatever. He had his administration talk to him LAST WEEK, guaranteeing a no vote this session.

If the skill of a politician is the ability to dangle carrots and sticks to various folks including those in other parties to get stuff passed, Obama is unskilled. Which is unsurprising since he's never actually done any of that.

He outsourced ObamaCare and everything else to Reid and Pelosi because HE LACKED THE SKILLS AND INTELLIGENCE TO DO IT HIMSELF.

This cannot be said enough. If anything he's a weaker pol in skills and intelligence than GWB. Himself notably weak.

gwood said...

Gore Vidal said a narcissist was someone better looking than you are.

Nassau Tyger said...

I agree with the previous poster who mentioned Michelle Obama's academic career at Princeton and Harvard. Whatever talents Barack Obama may have, it is a matter of record that Michelle's high school guidance counselor told her that her high school grade point average and SATs were far too low for her to be seriously considered by the Ivy League, and yet SHE GOT IN. Without Affirmative Action, most blacks couldn't get anywhere.

Everyone forgets that Michelle is Craig Robinson's little sister. Six-foot-six Craig was four-year starter 79-83 and first two-time Ivy League Hoopster of the Year at Princeton, 81-82 & 82-83, league-leader in field goal percentage both years; fourth highest scorer in P'ton history; Old Nassau class of 1983 with a B.A. in Sociology.

Suprised she got in?

Craig is also a U Chicago MBA who served as window dressing in the finance world for 10 years before heading into coaching full-time. So big degress and do nothing careers are a family legacy. Only in America.

P.S. At Oregon State Craig has had trouble beating Pac-10 teams but a decent .500 record overall.

Xenophon Hendrix said...

Obama passed a bar exam. Even if he was graded leniently in Harvard, passing the bar sets a lower limit for his intelligence. He is above average at least.

none of the above said...

tommy:

I am deeply skeptical of anyone's ability to analyze the personality of a professional politician from afar, but I think the issue with Obama you're pointing out is simple lack of experience. This is quite common among recipients of formal or informal affirmative action (which doesn't quite describe Obama, but maybe there are some parallels.):

Here's a guy who's got the right stuff to do some really demanding job, but he needs experience. For example, he's a bright guy who's worked for a couple years as a programmer since getting his EE degree. But someone from management promotes him to be the manager of some project with far too little experience, because it will accomplish some diversity goals.

The newly-promoted programmer is way out of his depth--not because he's stupid or lazy, just because he got a job at 25 that he'd have been ready for at 30.

ISTM that this is basically what happened to Obama. He's probably bright and talented enough for the job, but he really needed to be a governor or mayor or cabinet appointee or powerful senator for a few years, so he'd have the kind of experience to be able to handle the job. In his case, it wasn't affirmative action, it was a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity that came too young--the party was looking for an outsider, a fresh face, and the Republicans were in disarray. (Look at the alternatives to Obama from the Democrats.) But the result is the same, I think--before being president, he never ran anything larger or more complicated than his campaign. Four years as governor of Illinois or mayor of Chicago or Commerce Secretary or something would have given him some much-needed experience. (Though Illinois politics tends to be followed by prison time, so maybe that wouldn't have been a great path to the white house.)

smead jolley said...

If SWPL whites are full of goodwill and earnestness when dealing with blacks, blacks act nice and kind--'don't make sudden moves'--to play the game. Whites are goody goody, blacks are badass.

In 2008 on a commute bus about to make a stop in Sausalito, I told the black guy across the aisle, a nerdy Spike Lee type who for some reason started spouting off about "republicans," what a fraud the Democratic party was. He challenged me to step off the bus and discuss it, so I shed my normal earnestness and got right up in his face. You never saw such a look of stunned surprise. I think Marin's the right place for him.

none of the above said...

Anonymous:

AA is a bad policy, but there was a black elite before there was AA.

Simon in London said...

Re Sarah Palin's IQ, she's got to be at least a half SD above the white US mean, which would be IQ 110. She does seem incredibly goofy in TV interviews. I'd guess she was around IQ 110-115, similar to or possibly a bit smarter than Michelle Obama.

Svigor said...

I don't know his exact IQ, but he's smarter than Kerry and vastly moreso than Bush, who are not at all intelligent.

Kerry and Bush were about equal, so the one thing we know for sure is your math's #@*!ed.

Svigor said...

Ah, T, where would you be without logical fallacies?

Speaking of, I love how you're "not a race man," and have precisely jack shit to say on anything other than race. Well, you have jack shit to say on that, too, but you know what I mean. Think nobody notices how you never comment on anything but race?

David Axelrod said...

Truth is right-- a goodly chunk of you are just stupid, jealous little boys. Note that Steve himself is too bright to subscribe to the "Obama is stupid" idea. He just thinks he's a narcissist. Which is in all likelihood true


As BHO himself would state with gravatis, let me be clear here. I do not believe that Obama is by any means "stupid". I simply point out that he is not the genius his supporters and MSM imagine him to be simply reasoning through the facts outlined here.

To borrow another phrase, Barack Hussein Obama is bright enough. Barry's IQ is likely between GWB and Clinton. Clinton is more charismatic, GWB is narrowly ol'boy likable and Obama is cold, flat and extremely disciplined staying on message. These traits would be serious drawbacks for most candidates, but are an asset for the Affirmative Action-type pol who can distance himself from loud, proud and ignorant blowhards like Sharpton and Jackson.

More to the point, BHO's putative intelligence is not what makes him so terrible a POTUS. Again, Obama is smart enough.

Svigor said...

Like I always say, a white nationalist is someone who astutely realizes that IQ 90 Hispanics out-breeding the rest of the population is a bad thing, but somehow seems to think it's not a problem when IQ 90 whites out-breed the rest of the population.

Like I always say, to IQ fetishists, everything's about IQ. Even things that aren't, like ethnopatriotism.

Harry Baldwin said...

Nassau Tyger said...So big degress and do nothing careers are a family legacy. Only in America.

My first guess was that you meant "negress." Then I figured out it was "degrees."

Svigor said...

"@truth - yes, there are plenty of Harvard-educated lawyers who are slightly below average intellects. I know one personally. AA all the way."

Was that the one who handled your lawsuit when you sued your employer after getting burnt by hot french fry oil?


Wow T, you're becoming a parody of yourself. Didn't know that was possible.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous said: "Based on his unscripted interviews, I'd estimate his IQ at about 135-140."

The reason why I think he's probably 10-15 points lower than that range is that a 135-140 IQ translates into about 170 on the LSAT, which would put him in the 98th or 99th percentile on the LSAT. If that were the case, I believe he would have arranged for his LSAT score to be leaked during the campaign when people first began asking about it. The fact that he refused to disclose his LSAT score strongly suggests to me that it was below average (for Harvard Law) and would have supported the affirmative-action narrative.

- JP98

travis said...

According to Ovid, Narcissus was a beautiful man who was so consumed with his own desires that he cruelly dismissed those who fell in love with him. One of his spurned lovers, Echo, withered away and died due to her unrequited love. Nemesis, the goddess of revenge, condemned Narcissus to suffer the same fate: to fall in love and be denied what he desires. Narcissus then sees his reflection in a pool of water and falls in love with his own image. When he attempts to embrace his image, it dissolves and he suffers the same fate as Echo.

I retell the story because it's essential to understand narcissism not as a preoccupation with the self, but the lack of involvement with the self. Narcissus' grave mistake was his failure to recognize himself. He was dissociated from his true self.

So to understand Obama the narcissist we must look past his phoney self and see his true self. And this is where Sailer is years ahead of all other commentators; he's attempting to get to the core of the man. And there, I believe, you'll find Barry Dunham, white guy. Barack Obama is the cool, black alter personality, a Tyler Durdeneque white liberal fantasy, Barry created to shore up his sense of self. He has fallen in love with his own image.

jack strocchi said...

I kind of like Obama the politician, for three reasons:

1. He's not a Bush REP, so he largely inhabits a world consistent with science and common sense (give him a pass on Murray-bashing). Therefore does not embarrass the US.

2. His main policies (bank bail-out, stimulus, health care, financial regulation, carbon price, win war in Afghanistan, nuclear disarmament) are sensible enough and mostly helpful. Could do better on border control.

3. He sets a good example for young black men, Lord knows they need it.

4. He makes the US look good by showing that its people are less biased on racial matters than most other countries.

If he was not black I would not like him so much as a person. His personal affect us a little flat, almost the polar opposite of the typical young black male. In a white person this would be unremarkable, a little boring in a K0Mart store manager kind of way. In a back guy its kind of fascinating.

Svigor said...

"Racial supremacists have been using IQ tests to support their theories since the turn of the century"

"Scientists have repeatedly told us that genes don't vary much from one race to another"

"Mr. Murray has apparently decided that white America is ready for a return to good old-fashioned racism so long as it's artfully packaged and can admit for exceptions like Colin Powell. It's easy to see the basis for Mr. Murray's calculations"


Yeah, there's a guy so secure he just doesn't give a shit. He's so uber-secure of himself, he keeps his stats under lock and key. 'Cuz that's what uber-secure guys do - hide.

Wait, I know. He maxed out the SAT and has a four-digit IQ and got straight As at Harvard, but he's keeping it all under lock and key because he's an IQ denialist, right?

David said...

Obama?

"Being There" with some blackatude. Full stop.

Kudzu Bob said...

Think nobody notices how you never comment on anything but race?

Indeed. Twoof appears interested solely in his inadvertently comic attempts to demonstrate his own imagined superiority.

That his posts are typically shorter than Whiskey's is Twoof's sole virtue.

Truth said...

"Think nobody notices how you never comment on anything but race?"

Uh, Svigor, THIS BLOG is on nothing but race. That's Sailer's cause celebré. Either the post is explicitly or implicitly about race, I would say, 95% of the time. Although BTW, I have made plenty of posts on the implicit Kevin Love "sports" post that directly precedes this on, if you'd bother to check.

Anonymous said...

"Wait, I know. He maxed out the SAT and has a four-digit IQ and got straight As at Harvard, but he's keeping it all under lock and key because he's an IQ denialist, right?"

No, he's just that damn humble.

Hail said...

BamaResident:
black guy who got into Yale with a 28 ACT score

That translates to a 630 per section on the post-1995 SAT.

_ 17% of white males score above 630 on SAT-Verbal
_ 23% of white males score above 630 on SAT-Math. [Source].
I'm not familiar with racial breakdown on ACT itself, but it's probably about the same.

65,000 undergraduates are enrolled at Ivy League schools, out of 8.6 million total undergraduates enrolled at four-year schools in the USA (2008).

Thus, the Ivy League contains 0.75% of American undergraduates. Not quite drawn from the overall top 0.75%, though.

Hail said...

The commenter consensus here seems to be: Obama is far-above Palin but far-below Nixon in intelligence. Palin attended 965-SAT-avg Hawaii Pacific Univ. Nixon was a brilliant man who indeed was within the top-1% in intellect in the USA. He was accepted to Harvard on merit, as others noted above.

The debate can go no further, because -- like the birth certificate -- Obama's handlers continue to seal tight his SAT and LSAT scores. Why? Steve once speculated that Obama's scores were sky-high. (The commentariat attributed Obama's allegedly-high grades at Harvard to affirmative-action grade-inflation). If his scores were sky-high, why have they remained as tightly-sealed as a nuclear-armament code? Wouldn't a hypothetical 1500-SAT instantly deflate the common "Obama, the Affirmative-Action President" idea?

John said...

"Galileo had dick to do with it. He made zero scientific contributions to the debate over Heliocentrism."

I don't know if that's exactly true... I always thought that he discovered the moons of Jupiter, thereby proving that orbits could indeed be "nested" (a stumbling block to the acceptance of heliocentrism was the idea that the moon went around the Earth, which in turn went around the sun - how was this possible?), and that he discovered sunspots and that the Moon did not have a perfectly smooth surface, thereby proving that "out there" was not some perfect realm but just as variable and changeable as the Earth itself, thus disproving a key aspect of geocentrism.

Hail said...

Commenter "David Axelrod" on Obama's laziness:
__________________________________
Obama has played more golf rounds in 2yrs than Bush-II in 8yrs and perhaps has set a record for vacation during the worst crises since the great depression. He can't even fake interest.
__________________________________

Source for this?



Anonymous wrote:
I find the 115-125 range plausible. Much below that a man wouldn't be able to form complicated grammatically-correct sentences as easily as he does. Much above that he wouldn't be so boring.

The central fallacy among self-described "HBD"-ers manifests again: "All things are reducible to IQ".

Higher IQ = Less 'boring'? Really?

David Axelrod said...

Here's a relevant post on Obama's intelligence at Mangan

(from a purported Whitehouse insider)

Well, he takes his meetings just like any other president would, though even then, he seems to lack a certain focus and on a few occasions, actually leaves with the directive that be given a summary of the meeting at a later date. I hear he plays a lot of golf, and watches a lot of television – ESPN mainly. I’ll tell you this – if you want to see President Obama get excited about a conversation, turn it to sports. That gets him interested. You start talking about Congress, or some policy, and he just kinda turns off. It’s really very strange. I mean, we were all led to believe that this guy was some kind of intellectual giant, right? Ivy League and all that. Well, that is not what I saw. Barack Obama doesn’t have a whole lot of intellectual curiosity. When he is off script, he is what I call a real “slow talker”. Lots of ummms, and lots of time in between answers where you can almost see the little wheel in his head turning very slowly. I am not going to say the president is a dumb man, because he is not, but yeah, there was a definite letdown when you actually hear him talking without the script.


Mangan comments:

The mark of a truly intelligent person is, in my estimation, intellectual curiosity, and according to our source, Obama has none. He's wild about sports though. He listens to rap music on his iPod too.

Anonymous said...

I've seen absolutely no evidence, current or historical, that Obama is of even average intelligence. What I have seen is that he is a brilliant actor. Not only does he portray intelligence brilliantly, at least when there is a Tel-a-prompter available, but he also snookered the nation's entire population of progressive liberals into believing he was one of them, rather than the neo-con corporate statist that he actually is.

Dahlia said...

I haven't analyzed Obama's intelligence or thought much about it... I would guess he is in the 130's based on what I saw of him at the debates against McCain and the meeting the Obama-phile mentioned above. I don't see any reason to think he is not in the gifted range. Many of his critics, not too much here, talk incessantly about Obama "not understand the country" or "not comprehending that people are upset with what he's doing with the economy". As a result, they see it as evidence of stupidity. I believe, instead, that they don't understand him.

That anonymous above mentioned a meeting where he says Obama mopped the floor with the Republicans which they still fume about to this day...

I remember it a little differently; my crush on Paul Ryan began that day. Fact is, both held their own, but Paul Ryan outshone his fellow Republicans and became better known to rest of us as a result.

*****
Off topic, go to optoutday.com and urge your congressman to co-sponsor Dr. Ron Paul's legislation to bring dignity to air travel. Karl Denninger is being his totally Karl self about this issue, too.

normann said...

I'll pass on the armchair psychometrics. But what about the element of his character and intellect that Obama inherited from his mother? I don't have the time to dig, but it is a sure bet that the 50% of the president's genes from Stanley Ann Dunham comes from the transplanted New England stock that helped make Kansas bleed. This might explain the righteousness (why when in a testy mood, the president looks like a character in a Grant Wood painting, only with a very deep tan).

Reg Cæsar said...

Furthermore, Nixon is not "like" Obama in any significant way at all. His geneology [sic], for example, is fascinating. Virtually all of his ancestors, back to the 18th Century, were born in the US.. --Bill

Virtually half of Obama's ancestors, back to the 17th Century, were born in the US-- or, rather, in the colonies which came together to create the US.

He's related to seven other presidents. Not Nixon, though. (But I'm related to Nixon. And Obama. Such is geneAlogy.)

Reg Cæsar said...

Obama said that he liked being surrounded by people who expressed strong opinions, but he also said, “I think that I’m a better speechwriter than my speechwriters..."

Ronald Reagan was a better speechwriter than his speechwriters. They said as much themselves. But I don't remember his ever having bragged about it.

Captain Jack Aubrey said...

My guess w.r.t. Obama's speaking skills are that they were probably pretty decent - back when he had little to do but think about what he wanted to say. That would be right up to about the time that he became president, because he never really did much as senator.

Now that he bears the responsibility of the presidency he has little time to prepare remarks and so when speaking without his teleprompter he reveals how little he's thought about what he's saying. He has no natural passion for the subjects that would cause him to be highly articulate without preparation.

I don't think Obama's particularly smart, but I don't think it's raw IQ that wins the White House (or even a party's nomination) but extensive, high-level connections and loads of flesh-pressing and dealmaking. Think of the last 8 or so candidates: Gore, Kerry and both Bushes were born into well-connected families. Reagan, Dole, and McCain mostly weren't, and took a lifetime to earn their way to the top. Clinton earned his way early by being smart and ambitious - the smartest president since at least Nixon if not necessarily all that great on the job. Obama started out nowhere and got pushed to the top thanks to his skin color.

I'd put his intelligence at 115-130. Above 130 and he would have done something worthy and notable prior to being elected president. There are plenty of 130+ people who don't go on to do much, but those people tend to have poor social skills or other issues holding them back. Obama obviously has those in spades.

"Of course, Obama has never probably never taken a college-level science course in his life, but he's still an expert in this area."

That's quite an interesting conjecture. I wonder if it's true. I wouldn't be shocked if it is. Physics, chemistry, calculus, biology, or even economics?

Moreover, I wonder if he's ever had any natural inclination in his post-collegiate life to pick up a book on these subjects.

In his next town hall meeting someone should ask him. Name the book(s), name the classes, name what part of said books/classes interested him.

beowulf said...

As for Richard Nixon, a pity he didn't realy have Don Draper making ads for his 1960 campaign against Kennnedy. As Draper says (in the first season finale of Mad Men):

"Kennedy: nouveau riche, recent immigrant who bought his way into Harvard. And now he's well-bred? Great.

Nixon is from nothing. A self-made man, the Abe Lincoln of California, who was Vice President of the United States six years after getting out of the Navy.

Kennedy? I see a silver spoon. Nixon? I see myself."

Vox said...

Obama's IQ has a maximum ceiling of 129 and is most likely in the 115 to 125 range. He graduated from a school, where everyone takes the various college prep tests. He was not a National Merit Scholar, a National Merit Semifinalist, or an Outstanding Participant. This puts a ceiling on his SAT percentile at 96.9, which indicates a maximum possible SAT score of 1230 and maximum IQ of 129.

Based on observation, he's in the low +1SD range. His intelligence is certainly above average, but he's nowhere nearly as intelligent as he thinks he is. Those who cite his academic background should keep in mind that he was a transfer student from Occidental College, the 33rd ranked liberal arts college in the country; he was not initially accepted by the elite schools to which he almost surely applied as a freshman.

Anonymous said...

At least in the modern era, the 25th and 75th SAT percentiles for Occidental College are 1180 and 1370. (Has Oxy improved a lot in the last 30 years?) I think the higher score would put him up into at least the semifinalist portion of the National Merit Scholarship, assuming he took the test, and he didn't make that.

As I recall the NM semifinalist level roughly corresponds to an IQ of 130-135 or so. That's probably the top end for an Obama IQ estimate.

The low end for Oxy at 1180 would put him somewhere around 123 IQ if I've sorted through all the permutations of tables and SAT test versions correctly, which is doubtful. I'd assume he's closer to the 25th percentile than the 75th; I can't imagine him not applying to fancier schools, and they'd have snapped him up with that skin color and an SAT in the 1300+ range. I'd guess he's somewhere in the 125-ish range, assuming he wasn't drunk or stoned when he took the SAT, and wasn't some great late bloomer.

Kudzu Bob said...

Obama's IQ has a maximum ceiling of 129 and is most likely in the 115 to 125 range. He graduated from a school, where everyone takes the various college prep tests. He was not a National Merit Scholar, a National Merit Semifinalist, or an Outstanding Participant. This puts a ceiling on his SAT percentile at 96.9, which indicates a maximum possible SAT score of 1230 and maximum IQ of 129.

This brings to mind two of my close friends, both of whom have scores well above what is mentioned in the above quote, although neither of them was a National Merit Scholar.

The first one took a test in grade school that indicated that he had an IQ of 163. Because his parents joined a doomsday cult and moved the family to the Southwest when he was eleven, he never got around to attending high school. Eventually he ran away from “home,” a desert commune run by a Jim Jones wannabe named Doc. After knocking around the country for a few years, he went to a state university and then graduate school. Now he teaches philosophy and has at last begun to publish poetry and autobiographical pieces that have been well-received.

The second one, with whom I am collaborating on a book project for a medium-sized publisher, has a score of 146. In the eighth grade he simply quit attending classes, and since he had always been a disciplinary problem the school administration didn’t make an issue out of it. He too somehow talked his way into college, though, and did well. Afterward he eschewed more schooling for a high-prole job that pays very well indeed and has taken him around the world. When he injured his foot a couple of months ago, during his protracted recovery he found himself with a lot of time on his hands, so he began to write freelance pieces, all of which immediately sold.

In other words (to make my point so obvious that even Twoof can grasp it, however dimly), based on my small sample, the only way on God's green Earth a truly high-IQ person can avoid being a National Merit Something-or-other is to drop out of school before the tenth or eleventh grade, something that Obama did not do.

David Axelrod said...

Hale
Commenter "David Axelrod" on Obama's laziness:

source please...


This is hardly a state secret. Even the hopelessly leg-tingling MSM has reported on this a number of times (as often to justify it as anything else).

The Hill reports, Obama plays more golf in just over 9mos that Bush played in 2yrs and 10mos

Another CBS sourced report at Politico

To be fair, Bush gave up golf because he thought it sent the wrong message and was inappropriate to play while America was involved in 2 wars. The MSM helped in this decision by constantly criticizing Bush as a lazy elite out of touch snob.

To be fair, Obama probably doesn't give a shit if he comes across as a lazy out of touch elite snob while America is involved in 2 wars, a historic economic crises and clear rapid decline. The man called the BP gulf spill another 9/11 and promptly went out golfing for 4hrs, 6 more times during the crises and didn't visit any of the affected areas until weeks after Bush had visited Katrina (for which Bush was heavily criticized).

Obama has failed up the ranks so far and so quickly aided by eager SWPL power brokers including the MSM that he's never had to develop what little consciousness toward work or self-reflection he initially had.

Appointed one of the Editors to the Harvard Law Journal and offered a tenure track professorship at UChi Law School? Obama doesn't need to actually produce any work like an academic law book or single article. That's only for every other person whose ever been offered these roles.

Either you can see sunlight radiating from Obama's rear despite the smell all around or you are clearly a Rac*st.

Bill said...

John said . . .

"Galileo had dick to do with it. He made zero scientific contributions to the debate over Heliocentrism."

I don't know if that's exactly true... I always thought that he discovered the moons of Jupiter, thereby proving that orbits could indeed be "nested" (a stumbling block to the acceptance of heliocentrism was the idea that the moon went around the Earth, which in turn went around the sun - how was this possible?), and that he discovered sunspots and that the Moon did not have a perfectly smooth surface, thereby proving that "out there" was not some perfect realm but just as variable and changeable as the Earth itself, thus disproving a key aspect of geocentrism.


That's hard to answer briefly. The fact that Jupiter has moons was new, but not inconsistent with the Ptolemaic view, really. Moons going around Jupiter which goes around the Earth is not that different from epicycles (Jupiter going around a point in space which point is going around the Earth).

The other stuff---the fact that the moon was made of what looked like the same kind of stuff as the earth and etc---is inconsistent with Aristotelian views of the heavens, but those views are not essential to geocentrism. Ptolemaic calculations work whether the moon is made of Earth-stuff or heavenly stuff . . .

Credit should go to the people who actually did the painstaking data collection (Tycho Brahe), the groundbreaking experiments (Bessel), and the breakthrough theorizing (Newton, Kepler), not to Galileo.

Bill said...

Reg Cæsar said...

Furthermore, Nixon is not "like" Obama in any significant way at all. His geneology [sic], for example, is fascinating. Virtually all of his ancestors, back to the 18th Century, were born in the US.. --Bill

Virtually half of Obama's ancestors, back to the 17th Century, were born in the US.


And your point is? Are you claiming that Obama and Nixon are alike? Is a second generation immigrant really "like" someone whose ancestors have been in the US for >200 years, in terms of their genealogy? Seriously?

On second thought, Obama really isn't even a second generation immigrant since his dad did not actually immigrate.

Nixon and Obama are wildly dissimilar.

David Axelrod said...

Again, as Hillary would say about Obama, "He's smart enough".

Policies and IQ aside, Obama's personality seems very unsuited for the POTUS looking at his Big Five Personality Traits:

* Openness (Low - despite a decent of IQ 115-125 he is incurious about all but the most narrow of topics related to race and even then he pushes an extremely heterodox position without subtlety to the ability to compromise).

* Conscientiousness (Low - long track record of not producing any work comparable to the positions he has held in life or hard work as documented here.)

* Extroversion (Mixed to High - energized by adoring crowd but locks out, muscles and avoids people who are not adoring fans. Unable to network, compromise or work well with others of even partially different minds.)

* Agreeableness (Mixed to Low - is narrowly agreeable with those who already adore him but is cold, distant and aloof in general and particularly to those who hold different beliefs.)

* Neuroticism (Mixed to High - seems to have repeatedly long periods where he's tuned out: HS, Clairmont, Columbia and after losing to Bobby Rush. His navel gazing books, smoking, anti-FOX obsession, frequent vacations/breaks indicate a guy who has more a sensitive artistic temperament than a POTUS).

David Alexrod said...

Finally, it's not conservatives' claims that Obama is stupid but liberal's claim that he is a genius which constantly forces the issue on Obama's intelligence.

More pointedly, SWPL's inane idea that Obama is so smart that everything he (or more likely his staff) does must be so thoughtful, right and just that his administrations' every action is beyond reproach and needs no careful examination. If anyone disagrees they are lynched in the MSM as bitter ignorant racists.

To sum up then the few (but consistent) hard facts we have that put a ceiling on Obama's IQ:

* Occidental College SAT range post anon: likely IQ 125


* National Merit/PSAT post by Vox: max IQ 129 (likely 115-125)

NOTE: Obama's max IQ may be approx 15pts lower at 114 since he appears to have failed to qualify for the National Merit Scholarship Program too. This is a parallel African-American scholarship program with lower standards (probably equal to the constant 1SD/15IQ black-white IQ gap) to identify top black students.

Again, Obama has neither a surfeit or deficiency of IQ. But he certainly is no intellectual superman which has been use like his skin color to make his administrations' actions impervious to critical public review.

lesley said...

"Gore Vidal said a narcissist was someone better looking than you are."

Yes, an gay man would tend think that.

Captain Jack Aubrey said...

"I don't have the time to dig, but it is a sure bet that the 50% of the president's genes from Stanley Ann Dunham comes from the transplanted New England stock that helped make Kansas bleed."

Well his father was willing to bleed Kenya dry with socialism, by sticking it to all those white and Indian merchants. Grandpa was a layabout leftist kook. Mother was a smart but silly woman (smarts from her mother, silliness from her father) who chased colored men around the world. I've known white women who dated minorities - perfectly normal, many of them. But all the white women I've known who exclusively dated men of color had something wrong in the head.

Anonymous said...

McCain wasn't connected?!? Are you crazy, Captain Jack? The guy was military royalty. At one point he was flying out of an airfield that was named after his own grandfather.

Svigor said...

Uh, Svigor, THIS BLOG is on nothing but race.

Hahaha, thanks for confirming you're a race man, and why you never comment on non-race threads.

Svigor said...

Although BTW, I have made plenty of posts on the implicit Kevin Love "sports" post that directly precedes this on, if you'd bother to check.

Okay, my bad, you got me. You're a race major with a minor in sports.

Svigor said...

"Kennedy: nouveau riche, recent immigrant who bought his way into Harvard. And now he's well-bred? Great.

The idea that Kennedy was well-bred is pretty funny. It takes more than two generations to go from rum-runner to "well-bred."

The RINO McCain Family said...

Not only was McCain military royalty, once he terminally screwed up his military career left his first wife in hospital to run off with the only daughter (by 2nd marriage) of one of the wealthiest alcohol distributors in America which gave him the contacts and money to turn his oft misguided arrogance towards politics.


U.S. Congressman

McCain set his sights on becoming a Congressman because he was interested in current events, was ready for a new challenge, and had developed political ambitions during his time as Senate liaison. Living in Phoenix, he went to work for Hensley & Co., his new father-in-law Jim Hensley's large Anheuser-Busch beer distributorship. As Vice President of Public Relations at the distributorship, he gained political support among the local business community, meeting powerful figures such as banker Charles Keating, Jr., real estate developer Fife Symington III and newspaper publisher Darrow "Duke" Tully.

In 1982, McCain ran as a Republican for an open seat in Arizona's 1st congressional district. A newcomer to the state, McCain was hit with charges of being a carpetbagger.

...


With the assistance of local political endorsements, his Washington connections, as well as money that his wife lent to his campaign, McCain won a highly contested primary election. He then easily won the general election in the heavily Republican district.

Svigor said...

Yes, Svigggey, but "I" is the optimal word there.

I think you mean "operative," not "optimal."

Captain Jack Aubrey said...

"McCain wasn't connected?!? Are you crazy, Captain Jack? The guy was military royalty. At one point he was flying out of an airfield that was named after his own grandfather."

First, I said "mostly." I'm aware that McCain comes from Navy royalty. Second, being politically well-connected and militarily well-connected are not one and the same. For the most part the political and economic elite in this country couldn't give a spit what goes on in the military, unless it relates to procurement or to the defense of Israel. Generals and admirals are provincial country squires so far as George Soros, et al are concerned. The sons of admirals and generals are irrelevant.

Anonymous said...

To extend the speculations based on his likely SAT scores and how they relate to his IQ, I suspect that he had a big gap between his verbal and quantitative scores. He seems verbally fluent; perhaps he got some abysmally low score on the math section which dragged down his overall score and prevented him from getting into a fancier college.

The one period in his life when he indisputably did well in an academic environment was at Harvard Law, and he's been dining out on that since. As far as I can tell he's been invisible in every other academic environment he's been in: Oxy, Columbia, Chicago Law. That one period is puzzling, and is the only piece that doesn't fit. And even that period is limited to his class grades; he didn't write anything remarkable for HLR.

Anonymous said...

"But all the white women I've known who exclusively dated men of color had something wrong in the head."

I had an white officemate once who dated black women exclusively, and there was definitely something wrong with him. Smart, and functional enough, but he would brag and preen so blatantly that you almost suspected brain damage.

Anonymous said...

"Gore Vidal said a narcissist was someone better looking than you are."

Gore Vidal must have thought he was better looking than himself.

rob said...

...he discovered sunspots and that the Moon did not have a perfectly smooth surface, thereby proving that "out there" was not some perfect realm...

How did people not that the moon's surface is not perfect? You can tell by looking at it that some parts are darker than others. Look a couple of different times and you can tell that the pattern doesn't change.

travis said...

At some point the discussion needs to move beyond "Obama is not so intelligent" to "how did a not so intelligent man become president (again)".

The one period in his life when he indisputably did well in an academic environment was at Harvard Law,.. That one period is puzzling, and is the only piece that doesn't fit.

...but it is a sure bet that the 50% of the president's genes from Stanley Ann Dunham comes from the transplanted New England stock

Maybe, while he was at Harvard, Obama joined one of those exclusive clubs, you know, like the Phoenix, the Porcellian, or the CIA.

josh said...

Svigor vs Truth:Come out with purses swinging! Come on,cant you see you two are in love???

Anonymous said...

Just to keep flogging a dead horse, Obama was apparently nominated for a Truman scholarship while at Oxy, but did not receive it. It's a $30K scholarship intended for those who intend to go into public service. A successful Truman scholarship candidate would generally require about a top 15% class standing, according to modern standards. it's not primarily an academic award, but it looks like there's an expectation of being at least a pretty good student. If you do some AA discounting that would suggest Obama was something sub-top-15%, but not a washout or a dolt.

Students and faculty there described him as thoughtful, but if you read between the lines it doesn't sound like he got fantastic grades.

Obama's most influential professor was Roger Boesche, a political scientist who had Obama in two classes, one on American political thought, another on European political philosophy. Boesche remembers Obama as quiet and absorbed, not destined to be a "charismatic and brilliant orator."

"I didn't say, 'Oh, I knew he'd do that,' " said Boesche, contrasting him with more driven students he has taught. "They've got this powerful personality, they're interested in all the courses and ideas, and you start realizing they're going to do something special. He was gestating a little more slowly."


Another person:

In the classroom, former professors and classmates said, Obama found a niche - as a student whose analytical ability, as expressed in classroom participation and writing assignments more than rigorous study, made him someone to be listened to.

That suggest to me "extroverted bullshitter who nonetheless had at least something on the ball."

I think the reports from Oxy are consistent with him being able to pull his weight as at least a B student, probably a bit lazy, and not a blazing intellect. That puts him well above 100 IQ, and well below philosopher-king status.

Truth said...

"the only way on God's green Earth a truly high-IQ person can avoid being a National Merit Something-or-other is to drop out of school before the tenth or eleventh grade, something that Obama did not do."

I don't know, Bobby; I gleamed somewhere that he read Finnegan's Wake once.

Kudzu Bob said...

I don't know, Bobby; I gleamed somewhere that he read Finnegan's Wake once.

You got the title wrong, genius.

Anonymous said...

For what it's worth, Obama is vastly smarter and harderworking than Bush and more especially Palin. Palin is unquestionably no smarter than the average American, but is considerably more charming, ambitious, and tough. She's also pretty lazy.

Steve is right, however, that Obama would benefit from some criticism, which he doesn't receive because he's black.

Clinton is pretty smart and so was Nixon.

Truth said...

"You got the title wrong, genius."

Did I, or did Joyce?

asdfasdfasfd said...

Question worth asking.

Did presidents of the past have more power than they do in our time?
Suppose we compare Reagan with Obama.
Or Nixon with Reagan?
Or Nixon with Roosevelt.

FDR probably had more power than any single president.
George W. Bush seemed weak and Obama, though hyped more than any previous president, seems weaker.

Bush did bold things like invading Iraq but how much was it his decision or that of his handlers?
And Obama seems completely owned by the people who heap praise on him. Jews praising Obama is like Hollywood execs praising movie stars. It's really Jews congratulating their own power and genius to create these idols for mass consumption.

I would argue presidents today are weaker because of the Jewish and globalist factor. Not only has Ameican sovereignty eroded away but too much elite power is held by Jews. In the past, most presidents were wasps in a wasp-controlled America, so they were part of the ruling class. But today's presidents are non-Jews who must defer to Jewish power. Since today's presidents are not Jewish while Jews hold elite power, Jews keep a very close watch on them. Since the likes of Bush and Obama must play kiss-ass, they can't be all that powerful.

Reg Cæsar said...

And your point is? Are you claiming that Obama and Nixon are alike? Is a second generation immigrant really "like" someone whose ancestors have been in the US for >200 years, in terms of their genealogy? Seriously?

Nixon and Obama are wildly dissimilar.
--Bill

Oh, boy...

If you want to show how "wildly disimilar" Nixon and Obama are, you have loads of characteristics from which to choose. But you chose ancestry. And the genealogies of Richard Nixon and Stanley Ann Dunham are wildly similar.

Next you'll be telling us the children of Samuel P Huntington aren't American, because two of their grandparents were chased out of Armenia by the Turks.

Obama is not an alien. He is a turncoat. Learn the difference.

Anonymous said...

If you want to show how "wildly disimilar" Nixon and Obama are, you have loads of characteristics from which to choose. But you chose ancestry.

Not surprsing. With the exception of Steve and a few others, HBDers are weak qualitative thinkers.

Kylie said...

Kudzu Bob said..."[quoting Truth]'I don't know, Bobby; I gleamed somewhere that he read Finnegan's Wake once.'

You got the title wrong, genius."

Don't be too hard on him, Bob. He was probably thinking of Howard's End. Or The Brother's Karamazov.

Svigor said...

Svigor vs Truth:Come out with purses swinging! Come on,cant you see you two are in love???
..."gleaned," not "gleamed"...

adfadsfasdf said...

"For what it's worth, Obama is vastly smarter and harderworking than Bush and more especially Palin."

Smart or not, how much power does he really have? And how much good sense? And what kind of values and ideology and outlook?

In terms of real power, he seemed owned by and owed to Jews. Though black, his rise wasn't black-based-or-driven but Jewish-driven-and-nurtured.
In terms of sense, he seems like a jazzy megalomaniac who's used to being told he's the most wonderful person on this planet by smart rich people. In other words, he's an emotional idiot.
In terms of outlook and ideology, it's a mix of social democracy, Malcolm X attitudinizing, and Saul Alinsky trickery.

adsfasdfasdf said...

By making Obama seem very powerful and important, Jews hide their own power.
There are two ways of hiding one's power. By overpraising and over-vilifying other people.
By overhyping and overpraising Obama, Jews make it seem like a black guy controls America.
By overhyping and over-vilifying Muslims and China, Jews make it seem like the most powerful threats to America are them fellers.
Thus, Jews create hyper-heroes and hyper-villains to distract us from their own power.

Anonymous said...

"the only way on God's green Earth a truly high-IQ person can avoid being a National Merit Something-or-other is to drop out of school before the tenth or eleventh grade, something that Obama did not do."

Sorry for the what probably looks like resentful vanity, but I took the P-SAT in 10th grade because I knew that the SAT was the important test you needed to get into college. I got very high scores and would have qualified as National Merit Scholar, but it didn't count unless you were in 11th grade. I didn't take it again in 11th grade because I didn't see the point and couldn't justify the cost (large working class family). Had no idea about the National Merit thing until the senior yearbook came out showing all these 'National Merit Scholars'. Of the ones I knew, they all had lower SAT scores.

Of course this is very unlikely, but remotely possible, in Obama's case.

Anonymous said...

I think the unabashed leftism of many American Jews isn't good for the country, especially when you consider how this flies in the face of their ideological defense of the Israeli ethnostate, but supporting Obama isn't a Jewish plot to undermine the world social system and promote themselves. If they wanted to really help themselves and Israel, they'd have voted for George Bush and John McCain.

Leftism isn't too good for Jews anyway. Leftist immigration policies have led towards lots of anti-semitic Arab immigrants entering the European Union. Many of these immigrants frequently bash Jews, both verbally and literally.

Jews disproportionately like Obama because:

1.) They're leftists.
2.) Obama is a charming talker that can tell people what they want to hear.
3.) Jews are overrepresented in elite business, cultural, and political circles. So they're more likely to meet him than, let's say, a Puerto Rican janitor or Polish-American steelworker.
4.) They want blacks to resent them less and think Obama can help.
5.) Jews have high IQs and so does Obama, who is a major contrast to the type of blacks that Jews meet in the exceptionally rough Chicago southside.

CC-bLF said...

"I don't know, Bobby; I gleamed somewhere that he read Finnegan's Wake once."

Truth, your reading assigment is:

http://waitalia.tripod.com/short-uk.html

Then write a 1 pp. plot summary and a short expository piece relating the title of above reading assignment to the academic achievements of the current President of the United States.

Due tomorrow.

Just shoot me said...

"Of course this is very unlikely, but remotely possible, in Obama's case."
Dubious.
Whereas I can well imagine a smart kid from non-college-educated parents, lost in a big high school and pretty unknown to the high school counselors, failing to be clued in about the NMSQT,
BO's mama was a Ph.D., who BO described as "the dominant influence in his life."
No WAY Stanley Ann didn't know about the brag-factor of NMSQT or that she'd have just neglected to tell him.

Anonymous said...

Sorry for the what probably looks like resentful vanity, but I took the P-SAT in 10th grade... Of course this is very unlikely, but remotely possible, in Obama's case.

Thanks for sharing your PSAT history with us. Really glad you finally aired that out.

Yes, it is vanity and no, it has nothing to do with Obama.

"gleaned," not "gleamed"

Unsarcastic thanks for clearing that up, Svigor. I was wondering about that odd word choice. You seem to have a knack for deciphering "Truth". Maybe you two are close in some way ;)

Anonymous said...

Nothing like an "Obama is a dull narcissist" post to bring Sailer's IQ determinism crowd out of the woodwork. Keep at it Steve; those IQs won't baselessly speculate themselves!

Silver said...

I suppose it's too much to expect an apology. I wrote a number of comments on this blog years ago in which I mentioned that Obama didn't seem to be all that smart. Now I find that the world is once again catching up with me.

Since your posts not uncommonly run to five or six paragraphs long I often find myself thinking "this is Albertosaurus" before I reach the end. I'm usually right, as I was on this occasion.

With respect to the point you raise here, you know Al, I guess what they say about it taking one to know one is correct, you having an outsized ego of your own and all.

Reg Cæsar said...

I don't have the time to dig, but it is a sure bet that the 50% of the president's genes from Stanley Ann Dunham comes from the transplanted New England stock that helped make Kansas bleed.. --Normannn

Yes, how can we forget all the bleeding of the Wichita Massacre of a few years back, perpetrated by those archetypal Calvinist Cape Codders Jonathan and Reginald Carr? Like Yankee coffee, "light and sweet".

I don't gamble, but taking your bet is tempting as it isn't much of one. Grandpa Dunham was all of 1/32 New England stock, which means poor Barry doesn't even get a full percent. Jonathan Dunham, Singletary, was one odd duck who left Massachusetts in a huff for more suitable points south. Even Barry's genuine New Englanders didn't fit in. (I do have time to dig.)

Seems BHO's latitude is as inflatable as his IQ!

Anonymous said...

China is a threat to the U.S. They're stealing our manufacturing base and our politicians are sitting by idly and letting it happen. Back in the 1980s, Reagan was man enough to put quotas on Japanese automakers to save our domestic manufacturing industry. Who, among Republicans and Democrats, wants to do anything the equivalent now?

Heck, Obama can't even get China to stop excessively devaluing the Yuan or giving illegal subsidies to their domestic green companies. Where's Reagan?

If the Jews are for calling China a threat and acknowledging the need to do something drastic, then I think I might need to make a donation to AIPAC.

Anonymous said...

I think it's silly to judge intelligence on the low performance, since any smart person can score low due to lack of effort. It makes more sense to judge intelligence on the high performance.

Obama's high water mark is his magna cum laude graduation from Harvard Law School. It's as silly to go back to his PSAT's or his Occidental College performance as it would be to look at low water mark intellectual performance points for Albert Einstein or Bill Gates in an attempt to do a good faith evaluation of their intelligence.

I'm sympathetic to arguments that there is a smarter pool to draw presidents from than magna cum laude graduates from Harvard Law.

Folks like Dr. Chu and Michael Bloomberg come to mind. Mitt Romney may have been slightly less intelligent than Obama but better educated and more appropriately experienced in 2008, and I think that should count, too.

I personally like job performance narcissists, and I think Obama has been one at least since he graduated Columbia. In my opinion George W. Bush had the wrong type of narcissism, McCain too, which was too tied up into outdoing their fathers by narrow commander-in-chief type ways. Obama has the performance nerd chip on his shoulder of the black guy showing what he can do in a sport still dominated by white men, like a black golf player, swimmer, hockey player, or metal guitarist.

Hopefully Anonymous
http://www.hopeanon.typepad.com

Anonymous said...

"What Steve Sailer's readers have trouble doing is thinking in terms of statistical distributions, rather than in essentialist terms."

This commenter nailed it. I don't think you can graduate magna from Harvard law with below a 140 IQ. And maybe it has to be somewhat higher than that. I think you'd also need to be well above average in conscientiousness. I think Obama is smarter than (and outcampaigned) Bill Clinton, but less intelligent than Bloomberg.

Hopefully Anonymous

http://www.hopeanon.typeapd.com

Anonymous said...

The irony here is that Obama is flawed, but his flaws are clearly those of a high-IQ person, and show up the shallowness of the IQ fetishism that is so common here. He clearly does have a very high IQ. His writings and accomplishments make that clear enough that fringe right-wing Obama-haters are forced to come up with far-out fantasies (all his books were written by someone else! He edited the HLR due to affirmative action!) in order to deny it. But he also has the flaws of someone who is overly abstracted and has spent way too much time isolated in the bubble of a high-IQ meritocracy. David Bromwich has a good discussion:

http://www.lrb.co.uk/v32/n22/david-bromwich/the-fastidious-president/print

Obama has a high IQ all right, but IQ is not the be-all and end-all you guys think it is. It's rather weird for conservatives to latch onto something like IQ as the culture of the IQ fetishist is quite far removed from the culture of respect for tradition that should be at the core of conservatism. Apparently some people feel it's necessary as a pseudo-scientific justification for racism, though.

none of the above said...

asdfasdf:

What are basing your assessment of Obama's political policies/positions on? As far as I can tell, he's been as close to a middle-of-the-road Democrat as he could.

Obamacare looks to be an unwieldy mess, but it's nothing like the left wanted--not even including the option to buy into some Medicare-like thing, certainly not the single-payer scheme that most liberal Democrats would prefer. It was pretty plainly designed to ensure that the existing health insurance companies did just fine from it. (We'll soon all be legally required to buy their product.) My sense of this is that it's far to the right (whatever that means) of Hillarycare.

The financial regulation passed since the meltdown seems even more deferential to the interests of big banks than Obamacare is to the interests of big health insurance companies. The bailouts and stimulus seem to me to be of the same scale we'd have seen under any president, though more of the money went to the UAW and less to Haliburton than under a Republican bailout/stimulus scheme.

His war on terror policies look like a continuation of Bush's. (It's really fun watching as Democratic shills now defend Obama for doing the same stuff they called Bush a Nazi for doing. It's even more fun watching Republican shills claim Obama is surrendering to the Muslims for doing about 95% of the same stuff Bush was doing.)

In fact, the main differences between Bush's and Obama's policies is which set of shills-for-hire is now justifying his actions, and which set is calling him nasty names.

The biggest issues facing us are bipartisan ones--issues where the interests of the powerful are aligned against the interests of everyone else, regardless of political party. Goldman-Sachs is going to be getting whatever bailout money they need under a Democratic or Republican regime, Israel is going to get massive aid under either party, we're going to keep bases all over the planet and protect high-ranking military and spy and justice officials from any consequences, even of obvious crimes, under either party. Immigration is probably not going to be addressed under either party, since the desire for low-wage easily-intimidated labor is independent of political philosophy. Porno scanners at airports, similarly, aren't really a partisan issue--their manufacturers are admirably bipartisan in their willingness to hire lobbyists and pay bribes to get sales. And so on.

Anonymous said...

Obama has a high IQ, and he's smart enough for the presidency. Most of the speculation here on his IQ is simply a reaction to the flip side: that Obama is a genius.

He's smart, but not as smart as is claimed by his acolytes, and more importantly not as smart as he seems to believe he is. He is not, in fact, the smartest guy in the room.

His vanity, as reflected in his SGITR belief, is more of a problem than low IQ.

dfasdfasdf said...

"The irony here is that Obama is flawed, but his flaws are clearly those of a high-IQ person, and show up the shallowness of the IQ fetishism that is so common here."

Yes, he has higher IQ but he's no genius or profound thinker, which is what liberals make of him. If many cons won't admit he's smart, many libs won't admit he's no genius. Libs even say Michelle is smart!!

At any rate, his IQ wouldn't matter to either the right nor the left if he weren't black.

David Alexrod said...

The irony here is that Obama is flawed, but his flaws are clearly those of a high-IQ person, and show up the shallowness of the IQ fetishism that is so common here.

There is no irony here. First, IQ does not appear to correlate eitherway with Narcissistic Personality Disorder (NPD).

Second, the consensus here is that Obama's likely 120-125 IQ, while not astronomical as his IQ-fetish devotees tinkle their legs over, is historically in-line with a many other leaders like POTUS. In other words, it's not IQ that Obama lacks.

Except on the issue related to race, Obama's very disciplined. He stays on talking point always. He turns in good verbal performances that are unusually appealing to whites who view him as a self-proclaimed black politician (reassuringly boring, grammatically correct, WASPy flat vis-a-vis Sharpton).

Obama's failings noted here have primarily come from his low consciousness and personality disorders like incuriousity outside race, obsession with a largely self-imagined/adopted blackness, AA-instilled delusions of invincibility, intolerant dogmatism, inability to work well with others, brittle ego, prickly personality, lack of self-reflection, and so much more.

Most commentators here would agree that IQ is necessary not sufficient. Consciousness is about as important as IQ for success in general. For the POTUS in particular, a Big Five Personality that is notably different from Obama's more artistic temperment would be far more desirable.

The only irony here is that Obamaid drunks like you calling others "IQ fetishist" while you obsessed about IQ yourself and Obama's purportedly astronomical IQ.

(a) you cannot accept the only facts we know consistently point to a IQ sufficent IQ for the POTUS but not stratospheric, and

(b) you misinterpret the many valid criticisms of him as all IQ based (or/and raced based depending on how threatened your dearly-held illusions are).

Truth said...

"Maybe you two are close in some way"

Svigor?

He's my Nigor!

Truth said...

"At any rate, his IQ wouldn't matter to either the right nor the left if he weren't black."

It wouldn't matter here either, most of you voted for McCain.

Captain Jack Aubrey said...

"Mitt Romney may have been slightly less intelligent than Obama but better educated and more appropriately experienced in 2008, and I think that should count, too."

There's really no way in hell that Obama is smarter than Mitt. Romney has genuine accomplishments on his CV - at Bain & Co, Bain Capital, and the Salt Lake Olympics, to name a few.

"This commenter nailed it. I don't think you can graduate magna from Harvard law with below a 140 IQ. And maybe it has to be somewhat higher than that."

Harvey C. "Minus" Mansfield would beg to differ, and 40 years of affirmative actioneering on behalf of black students backs him up. I'll give you that Barack Hussein Obama may be one of the smartest black students ever to graduate from Harvard Law, but nothing more.

"At any rate, his IQ wouldn't matter to either the right nor the left if he weren't black."

Welcome back from your cryogenic slumber. We'll bring you up to date on the years 2001-2008 shortly. We'll start with George W. Bush.

Truth said...

"the consensus here is that Obama's likely 120-125 IQ"

Really, you mean that after four years in the public eye, the genius-deities here ready to declare that a Harvard-educated lawyer with two Harvard PHD parents is smarter than average.

This, is monumental.

Kudzu Bob said...

Don't be too hard on him, Bob. He was probably thinking of Howard's End. Or The Brother's Karamazov.

Yeah, I guess you're right. Punctuation be racist an' shit.

mizzou said...

"Yes, how can we forget all the bleeding of the Wichita Massacre of a few years back, perpetrated by those archetypal Calvinist Cape Codders Jonathan and Reginald Carr?"

Normann was referring to abolitionists like John Brown, which makes your response rather ironic, don't ya think?

catperson said...

I love that you idiots are still repeating the canard that Obama can't speak without a teleprompter, nearly a year after he walked into the Republican leadership conference and verbally destroyed them, speaking extemporaneously the entire time.

You too are repeating a canard. I listened to the entire conference on youtube to see what the fuss was about and reports of Obama's performance were wildly exaggerated. Yes he performed well, but mostly because he was in complete control of the event so no one could ask him any follow up questions as he kept moving from one person to another.

catperson said...

This commenter nailed it. I don't think you can graduate magna from Harvard law with below a 140 IQ.

Yes you can. The average IQ at Harvard when tested on a neutral IQ test which was not used to select them is about 130:

http://www.news.harvard.edu/gazette/2003/10.23/01-creativity.html

Harvard law must be a little higher; maybe 135. Magna cum laude students would tend to be above the class average, but there would be lots of exceptions. In a school where everyone is smart, factors other than IQ largely determine who gets the best grades, just like when everyone is tall (the NBA) factors other than height determine who is the best basketball player. Michael Jordan is the best basket ball player despite being shorter than the average NBA player, so Obama could have had magna grades even if he were below the average IQ at Harvard law.


Also, perhaps Obama took easier classes and professors liked him (grading is probably not really blind since profs can recognize their students' writing styles and also bump up grades after exams).

catperson said...

In terms of real power, he seemed owned by and owed to Jews. Though black, his rise wasn't black-based-or-driven but Jewish-driven-and-nurtured.

I disagree. I was a supporter of Obama's long before anyone thought he had a chance and I didn't see much Jewish love. Most of the media was initially in the tank for Hillary proclaiming her "inevitable" and declaring her the winner of every single debate they ever had and asserting he wasn't black enough to carry the black vote.

The media really only started to get behind Obama after Oprah campaigned for him in Iowa and South Carolina and he went on to win both states, but there was still a media campaign to hurt him by showing clips of Rev Wright 24/7. And right to the bitter end, exit polls showed Jews voting for Hillary over Obama and there were great concerns that Obama's Arab last name would scare off older Jews in Florida.

Now once Obama secured the Democratic nomination, Jews had no choice but to support him, especially after McCain selected Palin, who despite being militantly pro-Israel, probably scared a lot of Jews with her Christain fundamentalism.

catperson said...

Obama's high water mark is his magna cum laude graduation from Harvard Law School. It's as silly to go back to his PSAT's

But his PSATs are an actual validated psychometric test of intelligence. Harvard law grades are just a measure of his performance in law school. There's a huge difference between a brilliant mind and an excellent student even assuming Obama was an excellent student.

Truth said...

Bobby, as you are the self-appointed resident, school-marm grammar nazi here, I am highly disappointed in your latest offering; A man who prides himself on written accuracy, has literary aspirations, and also is a devout worshiper of HBD, should, at the very least have a working knowedge of ebonics. Let's analyze your latest offering:

"Punctuation be racist an' shit."

This would not qualify as ebonics, this would be relegated to the larger trash-heap known as honk-ebonics, which is an offshoot by bald 60 year old white guys with ponytails.

First of all, said black person that you are imitating would probably not be likely to utilize a 4 syllable word such as "punctuation." "Grammar", for the sake of accuracy, would be a better choice for ridicule here.

Secondly, honkies who know no black people often make the mistake of signifying their honk-ebonics with a misused helping verb, e.g, "be" as opposed to "is."

In a true real life encounter, a ghetto dweller would be much more likely to omit the helping verb rather than use the wrong one.

Additionally, the much overused colorful, archaic ebonic modifier "and shit" has evolved to the point where it is much more likely to be used by you and your buddies at a cross-burning, than in an actual treastie from an actual black person. A good example of this would be "Dang Jim-Bob, light the gosh-day-urn match, it's freezing and shit."

Accuracy in this situation would probably call for a regional pronoun substitute depending on location such as "dawg" in Los Angeles, "son" in New York or "padna" in the South. Put it all together and your original old white man's Lamont Sanford-esque

"Punctuation be racist an' shit."

becomes;

"Grammar racist, Dawg"!

I hope this helps.

catperson said...

I've seen absolutely no evidence, current or historical, that Obama is of even average intelligence. What I have seen is that he is a brilliant actor.

Being a brilliant actor might require high IQ seeing as all mental abilities are g loaded to some degree. I wonder how Merryl Streep would score.

catperson said...

Without Affirmative Action, most blacks couldn't get anywhere.

It's probably the brightest blacks that benefit the most from affirmative action, because bright people always benefit the most from opportunity, and affirmative action is most prevalent in g loaded fields. The black elite would still be successful without affirmative action though just to a lesser degree. Similarly, the white/Jewish elite would be a little less successful without nepotism

catperson said...

The fact that he refused to disclose his LSAT score strongly suggests to me that it was below average (for Harvard Law) and would have supported the affirmative-action narrative.

What affirmative-action narrative? Outside of HBD blogs, I don't see anyone suggesting Obama is just an affirmative action token; most of the media (liberal and conservative) describe him as brilliant. He has no need to release his test scores because they are meaningless to most Americans who already regard his Harvard degree as sufficient proof of genius. High test scores would only win him credit with a very tiny percentage of right-wing bloggers who still wouldn't vote for him.

Anonymous said...

I've noticed something. While people have proffered compelling arguments to prove BO's lack of intelligence--i.e., he has never written on legal topics though he was editor of Harvard Law Review, he's never written on anything except himself and that was mostly ghost-written; he's never displayed any intellectual curiosity despite having access to the best and brightest minds; in short, he's done nothing except yack and yak and yak, mostly at a teleprompted. He has proven no intelligence.
Yet, every couple comments, somebody says, "ok ok so BO is quite bright." Dude, dudette--everybody has just made the case he is not, and made it very well. Nobody has offered evidence for "brightness."
IMHO, the obots are still out and about. They come to places like this and try to keep the meme going: "he's quite bright quite bright quite bright quite bright...."

Anonymous said...

Obama's high water mark is his magna cum laude graduation from Harvard Law School. It's as silly to go back to his PSAT's

There's no other time in Obama's life in which he has performed at a similar academic level to his grades at HLS. It's completely anomalous. That makes me think there's something else going on during that time period. Maybe sleeping with a smart fellow student, or some recurring personality issue (depression? drugs?) that drives down his performance at all other times.

Anonymous said...

BTW, Richard Epstein from UChicago Law discusses his experience with Obama here:

http://reason.tv/video/show/interview-with-richard-epstein

"he has very little by way of skill sets to address the sorts of complex problems he wants to address but he has this unbounded confidence in himself"

"he was actually a very bad Chicago faculty member... we always hoped he'd participate in the general intellectual discourse but he was always so busy with collateral adventures.."

"He always kept to himself (and then) you don't get to hear strong ideas articulated by people who disagree with you."

"He's not the kind of guy who likes to be pushed."

He'd listen to you, and then you'd never know what he believed afterwards. He's amazingly good at intellectual poker.

That's all consistent with him not being not the genius his supporters believe, and being several notches below what one would expect of a HLS editor.

Anonymous said...

If Obama is +1 SD, most blacks are -1 or -2 SD. He's going to seem like a God to them. And to himself.

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