I had a surreal experience recently that displayed a total lack of awareness among the midwit, "educated" liberals who believe CNN.
First, a digression to an excellent, relevant article I discovered via "Further Reading" over at Decline and Fall - I am remiss in adding the Unz report to my reader stream, but regularly get passed good articles there. In it, Antony Karlin shows what it means to deal with average, and below average IQ, and what the consequence is for something as simple as differentiating greater from lesser.
Only 52% could do item AB30901, which is to look at a table on page 118 of the 1980 World Almanac and answer: According to the chart, did U.S. exports of oil (petroleum) increase or decrease between 1976 and 1978?
Such is the banal reality of the American high-90s average IQ, which is still a dozen points above the world average.
Why am I bringing this up?
Because whenever I write about IQ and its relationship to economic success there will inevitably be the skeptical commenters bringing up the same old tired responses. IQ is just a number. It doesn’t measure anything. You are a pseudo-intellectual. You are an IQ reductionism. You are an autist.
Now I acknowledge that there are understandable reasons for this. You can say that Country X has an IQ of 100 and Country Y has an IQ of 85 – but what the hell does it mean in real life?
** And consequently, why should the ability to scribble down something for some irrelevant test matter for economic success?**
He then progresses through a series of questions that should be easily answered, but aren't by far too many people. When you realize how these basic skills are at the core of everything from carpentry to plumbing to any kind of financial planning and projection, much less engineering, it suddenly becomes very clear how the average IQ, and thus, how many people capable of operating at or above a threshold to work quickly, precisely, and with an idea of even first-order effects are available, affects economic health, progress, and the ability to build and maintain highways, bridges, and indoor plumbing.
And even then, there are far too many people who can't figure out underlying assumptions that must be true for something to happen. This is especially true of the college educated midwit who, by dint of getting a degree, being able to memorize things better than average, and parse written language better than average, think they are smart.
Understanding underlying assumptions and conditions though is effectively a second order analysis - and if there's a reason that socialism/globalism/etc. are attractive to midwits, it's because most are only looking at things at a first-order level. They may be capable of it, but it's not a habit.
Which brings me back to the most recent reminder of this. An acquaintance asked if anyone had heard of what happened in Minnesota. Given the plethora of available options and having no idea which one he was talking about, I pled ignorant. It turned out he was talking about the AirBNB which stopped displaying a Norwegian flag because people were mistaking it for a Confederate battle flag.
The takeaway was that it was it was a shame that someone had to take the flag down, was silly to give in over such controversy, and it was dumb that people couldn't recognize the difference. The group agreed.
Given they were on the liberal side of things - pro green, standard liberal anti-racist though not SJW, and so forth - I said "it's a shame", and left it at that. Found a way to excuse myself and get back to work, and so on. Call it believing CNN actually calls an apple an apple, call it thinking he's politically knowledgeable, I don't know, but:
I know people that had chided him for going to a pro-Floyd rally that had not been sanctioned by BLM as "white people trying to assuage their guilt". I also know that he and some of that crowd were familiar with cases of black people calling out professional sectors to explicitly show support for "melanated voices", and so on, and even supported it. Even aware of at least some of the moral hectoring and pressure being applied, and of the mindset "confederate flag fliers are awful, horrible racists" they couldn't imagine why anyone would take the flag down in the full knowledge the accusation was bullshit. They're not those bigoted assholes who deserve to get fired, right?
More relevant, this crowd of very smrt people, proud of their college degrees, very cosmopolitan, looking down on Trump supporters as dumb and ignorant and bigoted, didn't understand who was making the complaints. Namely, supposedly college educated and smart liberals down with all the right causes.
That said, I'm sure even as they were muttering about morons who couldn't tell national flags apart - it does occur to me that isn't a very needed skill in a globalist society - they didn't want to consider that the demographic most likely to have a complaint about the confederate flag and voicing it in a social media swarm was the very one they were proud of being a part of, as it made them look stupid. It made them look ignorant. It made them look petty and vindictive, acting to hurt someone out of hatred for the other.
Instead it was "just a few idiots".
You and I know there are too many people losing their jobs and livelihoods today over opinions these people would be angered over. And they do too. Understanding the holistic connections and foundational assumptions is not a habit, and there are strong incentives of pride not to dig in. Disputing the narrative or questioning the cult would have the mob put their heads on the chopping block too. But they won't admit to the mob even as they see a story that requires it to exist.
Ultimately, even if there is a degree of discomfort in acknowledging what must be true for the story to be true, they are not good at this. This shows in other areas. Take "systemic racism" - it's a simple first-order causality for them. There's a discrepancy, ergo racism. Nice, simple, and no nuance or complex thinking required. No questioning what else must be true if "racism" is the answer, and why it doesn't appear. Cops caught saying "racist" things in supposed privacy shows that police forces are inherently racist and full of racists, yet they cannot understand how a teacher suspending a student over a lego "gun" points to a systemic problem of idiot school admins. There is a large qualitative difference. Even assuming the validity of what is called racist, one points to there being more bigoted and asshole cops than expected, but is ultimately two people acting to avoid official or public notice - they weren't addressing a meeting of their fellow cops to cheers, nor expecting to - the other is a public act which requires official sanction to be approved, and the expectation that one's fellow workers will approve.
It may also explain why they are so bad at sniffing out bullshit faked "hate crimes." - the story fits their narrative belief of "Orangemanbad and supporters of orange man R bad", and the question of "if this story is true, what else would be true, and does it even make sense?" is never considered.
As I've mentioned, Marxism, etc., rely on midwits only considering the first order implications and intentions of any policy. Good wargamers, thinking out what the responses and likely counter responses would be, they are not. Nor wise, nor smart, nor inclined to wonder "why is that put in place there?"
Finally, It may also explain their acceptance of the dark and depressing stories of GRR Martin, and similar. They project their own fears, hatreds, lack of self control on others, and never ask "if everyone were like this, would the world be the way it is?" It's scarier to consider those who would answer yes because they are blind to love and beauty, and cannot see it to even get a different answer.