This is an introduction to a rant. The rant follows the introduction.
And I feel the need to say this because today's topic is stupidity and the stupid.
My name is Sam Vaknin, I am the author of Malignant Self-Love, Narcissism Revisited, and a ranting professor of psychology.
A few weeks ago, a prestigious media outlet modified an article I have written about narcissism.
The reason to castigate narcissism, to present them or cast them as predators, is a form of ableism, a discrimination against the disabled.
You see, narcissists are disabled. It's not nice to say not nice things about them, because they are disabled.
Yes, I said they are disabled, but they are also predators. For example, we attack viruses. We cast viruses, in a way, they are lignant, dangerous.
This is not a form of speciesism. It's not a form of discriminating against another living species. It's just a fact. Viruses are dangerous. Very often they are deadly. It's the same with narcissists. They are dangerous. They are predators. The fact that they are disabled has nothing to do with it.
And so, this narcissistic virtue signaling, you know, ableism or avoiding ableism, is a rank form of stupidity. And stupidity is taking over the world.
Before we go there, an announcement. There's a seven days free seminar. I'm giving a seven days free seminar in Turno Sevevin, Turno Sevevin, Severin, which is a fairy tale town in Romania. And so, it's September 19th to September 25th. There are few seats left. I advise you to register if you want to attend.
Now, during the seminar, I'm going to be in Turno Sevevin starting on September 18th and well into September 28th. During the seminar and the days before and after the seminar, I'm available to give in-person counseling. So, if you're interested, contact me. If you want me to reserve a seat in the seminar for you, contact me. Contact me in any case.
Sam Vaknin, that's my name, one word, small letters, samvaknin at gmail.com. Write to me. I'll reserve a seat for you. Let me know if you're interested in in-person counseling.
Onward to the stupid.
The stupid have always had opinions about everything under the sun. That's been the case in the Middle Ages. That's been the case in the ancient world. The stupid have been with us forever.
But the stupid were wary. They were careful. They were cautious. They were afraid to express these opinions, lest they be shamed, ridiculed, and shunned by their betters. The stupid kept to themselves. They knew that if they were to venture out and offer their inane opinions or judgments or ideas, they would be put down metaphorically and sometimes physically.
So, they were afraid. They kept their counsel to themselves.
But this is no longer the case.
The dumb today are brazen. They are vociferous. They drown out by sheer force of numbers all the other informed intelligent voices. The ignorant and the retarded are the overwhelming majority.
They trust their own pitiable life experience over science. They adhere to magical thinking. And they are fierce in the defense of their grandiose, inflated, fantastic self-image. It's undiscovered geniuses.
This is called, by the way, the Dunning-Kruger effect. And I have a video dedicated to it. The stupid don't know that they're stupid. They think they're very clever.
Many of them believe themselves to be geniuses. Narcissism and stupidity are twins. Technology empowers mediocre failures. Technology renders losers winners in their own eyes. Technology engenders a self-delusion of malignant egalitarianism.
We're all equal to each other in terms of our endowments, intellectual and otherwise.
Access to raw information is not the same as position of structured knowledge.
But the stupid cannot tell the difference. A stupid person would say, I'm as knowledgeable as my medical doctor. I know more than my professor or my therapist because I can Google. My opinions, therefore, count as facts.
More and more we hear these claims.
Truthism, my facts and your facts. I have come across an amazing thread in a forum where someone said the battle of Hastings took place in 1066. And another guy answered, that's only your opinion.
My opinion is different. Stupidity is on the rise. And it is on the rise for two reasons.
Number one, a reverse Flynn effect. A reverse Flynn effect. There has been a precipitous decline in average IQ scores in the past four decades.
Yes, contrary to online nonsense, there's been a decline in IQ, not a rise in IQ. The Flynn effect has been effectively reversed in the 1980s. And the decline is massive in some countries, for example, Norway and other countries. The decline equals something like 10%.
The second reason why stupidity is on the rise is that inanity is tolerated. Stupidity is legitimized. We tolerate the dumb. And we encourage indolence, entitlement, niches, ignorance. We say, you know, everyone is entitled to have their own lifestyle, their own choices. We tolerate every personality. We accept any way of life.
This is malignant tolerance. Malignant tolerance is anything goes and everything goes. No boundaries, no values, no beliefs, no guiding principles. Nothing. Anything goes. That's malignant tolerance.
And so we tend to tolerate and legitimize stupidity.
And there's a very big corpus body of knowledge in psychology, sociology, anthropology, and similar sciences, which concludes definitively that when we tolerate and legitimize a behavior or trait, the incidence and prevalence of these behaviors and traits tend to skyrocket. Societal legitimacy, peer tolerance, encourage specific behaviors. They provide what we call positive reinforcements.
And so malignant tolerance, which accepts stupidity, is a legitimate lifestyle choice, so to speak, and encourages behaviors such as indolence, entitlement, ignorance, of course, leads to a tsunami of stupidity.
Now, the way I see it, stupidity is a form of assault. What is assault? What is rape? Rape is the invasion of your body without consent, any part of your body. Could be your genitalia, but could also be your brain.
Secondhand smoke is respiratory rape, because someone forces smoke into your body. Ambient noise pollution is auditory rape. The great unwashed is olfactory rape. Unwanted touch, invasion of private space are tactile rape. Not fully consensual sex is rape, pure and simple.
All forms of abuse constitute emotional rape. And in my view, stupidity is a rape. It is an intellectual rape. Someone forces his idiocy, his criticism, his moronic views into my brain without my consent and permission. He is raping me intellectually.
Rape should be criminalized in all its forms. Rape should be penalized in all its forms. The perpetrators should be relegated to penal colonies, virtual or otherwise.
Otherwise, otherwise. Because if we don't, we may end up in idiocracy. Watch this movie. It's important of the future. It's a dystopian view, which is fast becoming reality.
And so now, on to the rant, as promised. Yes, this has been only the introduction. Poor you.
Stupidity, and especially profound stupidity, have become positive evolutionary adaptations.
The stupid evaluate risks less well, so they are willing to take on the world without fear of the consequences of their actions that makes them better entrepreneurs, better businessmen, better politicians. The stupid get a chance to have sex, which is much higher than the clever. That's a fact established in numerous studies, so their reproductive success is much higher. The stupid are everywhere. The stupid and the profoundly stupid are constitute the vast majority of humanity. So they band up, they team up, they collaborate with each other, and they obtain outcomes, favorable outcomes.
To be stupid is to be more self efficacious. And so we are heading into the age ofstupidity, idiocracy.
In the age of stupid, the clever will become an endangered species, an extinct variant of humanity.
Stupid people will bring stupid people into the world, will breed and interpret, and stupidity will become a characteristic of humanity. Intelligence and intellect will be outsourced technologically into our devices.
The only smart things in our lives will be the smartphone.
I, of course, am terrified by the veracity of these clades. I wish I could say that this is tongue in cheek. It is not.
Humanity is under an imminent danger, an imminent threat of being overrun by idiots, deluded by imbeciles, and this risk is growing by the day.
And so we are submerged by a tidal wave of retardation.
We often confuse technology with culture and civilization with progress. Nazi Germany is proof that such reflexive linkages are spurious.
In Nazi Germany, technology was at the apex. And yet, they were barbarians. And stupid to boot.
In truth, we have become barbarians with iPads and iPhones. We use the latest innovations to play Angry Birds or whatever it is that we play nowadays, and to watch in-name videos on YouTube, and to exchange trivialities on Facebook.
Traits are not desirable or undesirable in themselves. Traits, qualities, properties, characteristics of the organism, the phenotype, the genotype, the psychology of the organism. These are advantageous, adaptive, or they are detrimental, depending on the environment.
That's all. The environment determines which traits will survive and which will not. Traits that afford you reproductive success, traits and qualities, and skills and talents that allow you to have children make sure that you will propagate your genes.
And in today's world, if you're intelligent, your chances of reproducing are much lower. Women prefer men with an IQ lower than 120 to men with an IQ higher than 145.
Now, these are the results of a study published two years ago, several years ago.
It seems that women increasingly prefer stupid men.
Why is that?
Because our contemporary world, the world we live in, the world we live in is ruled by stupid people. It's governed by the feeble-minded.
Dimweeds are empowered by technology, and everything is dumbed down to foster mass consumption. Education is a misnomer. Higher education institutions teach how to have fun, how to go on hookups, basically, and how to gain the system to obtain a degree which is pretty much useless in later life, and of course, how to make student debt.
This is the world we live in, and women select for better males, as the monosphere calls them. Women select for inferior men, because in the current environment, better trades are preferable to alpha trades. In the current environment, what used to be inferiority is an evolutionary advantage, a positive adaptation.
Stupidity is a case in point. It is a paradigm shift of mind-bending proportions for those of us in possession of a mind.
A study of one million young adults, over 40 years, that's four zero years, conducted by Jean Twenge and her colleagues, and published in the March 2012 issue of the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, this study shocked me.
It has starkly demonstrated the deterioration from one generation to another.
Youngsters today, according to this study, are focused on money, image, and fame, and they disparage values such as community, voluntarism, the environment, and knowledge acquisition.
Ostentatious social activism is a form of virtue signaling. These youngers are socially active, demand justice in mass protests, on camera, they're posing, they're faking, they're out to garner likes and attention.
Other surveys have documented a rising level of illiteracy in the younger in the newer, in the younger generations. Many of them are unable to read a label on a bottle or a medicine.
As if to illustrate the imminence of these new dark ages, the Encyclopedia Britannica and others, Newsweek and so on, announced that they will cease publication of their print editions.
The Encyclopedia Britannica has survived for 244 years, but it did not survive the tsunami of idiocy and stupidity and intellectually challenged readers, so to speak.
The surviving digital editions of the Britannica are a far cry from the print equivalent in terms of depth, length, and irreducion.
The stupid, the trivial, the frivolous, they are everywhere.
Among the working classes, of course, but increasingly you can find these displacing the erstwhile elites, spawning hordes of mindless politicians, idiot business tycoons, everyone knows who I have in mind, narcissistic media personalities, gullible clergy, vacuous celebrities, illiterate, best-selling authors, athletes with far more brawn than brain, repetitious pop singers, less than mediocre bureaucrats, bovine gatekeepers, and even ignorant and semi-literate academics.
And the cacophony of these constituencies of intellectually challenged people, their cacophony drowns the few voices of wisdom, expertise, and experience, and the sheer number of the stupid overwhelms all systems of governance and all mechanisms of decision-making.
Rather than fight back this tsunami which is futile, the well-educated, the irreducible, and the intelligent choose to withdraw.
They avoid the world, they seclude themselves in self-constructed schizoid ivy towers, and they draw all the bridges.
Imbeciles, crathians, and morals are a menace to the continued existence not only of our civilization but also of our species.
We may end up being all homo, no sapiens.
The percentage of stupid people in the general population actually is increasing. There's been a drop of seven points in global IQ since the 1950s.
In terms of absolute numbers, there are more stupid people now than the entire human population only a century ago.
Modern medicine makes sure that the intellectually challenged, the plain dim-witted live on to a ripe old age and reproduce.
That we are faced with the daunting prospect of idiocracy is the fault of the malignant transformation of the democratic ideal and the recent onslaught of the media both old and new.
Let's take democracy.
Let's start with democracy, the stupid people's pernicious answer to meritocracy.
In the not too distant past, dim-witted people had the right to vote once in a while and thus expressed their completely inconsequential opinion where it mattered least in the ballot box.
There was a way to contain stupid people, to sell them on a delusion of power.
Alas, the inane idea of one person, one vote, has invaded and permeated, headed to hierarchical environments such as government, the workplace and the military.
I'm saying this is a crazy idea because never mind how pinheaded, brain-dead, unqualified or ignorant someone is. He has a vote like I do, same vote that I do. He has the same power in the ballot box like me or you.
If you are a professor with four doctorates, you have the same power like a semi-retarded with a motorcycle or something. You know what I mean?
This is unbelievably idiotic, this malignant egalitarian.
People should not have the right, the equal right to vote. People should not have equal rights period because people are not equal.
With technology at their disposal, the stupid repeatedly interfere with and disrupt the proper functioning of virtually every system, every institution, every process.
Even the generation and transfer of knowledge have been democratized as crowdsourcing yielded enterprises such as Wikipedia, the so-called encyclopedia that anyone can edit, add to, delete from and generally vandalize.
Internet search engines rank results not according to the quality of the content, the merits and authority of the author. No, they rank the results by the number of votes, by the number of views, by the number of likes and these votes and these views and these likes come from, they are cast by, you guessed it, mostly dense people, mostly stupid people who now congregate on social networks.
The stupid determine your search results.
This widespread and much-loaded vandalism of human knowledge and even human information, this information is the raw material for knowledge. This vandalism going on which reflects the utter collapse and disintegration of the education system.
Our education system turns out illiterate, nascent and irrational graduates having annihilated these standards in order to lucrative embrace them as students in the first place.
And so we have honorary doctorates.
Taylor Swift is the new PhD.
The stupid, dimly aware of their innate inferiority, the stupid are anti-elitist, anti-intellectual, anti-excellence, anti-expertise. They hate, they hate intellectually superior people. They detest geniuses. They want to bring everything down to their level.
But while in the past these remained only sentiments, today they have become an ethos, a code of conduct, a set of values and ideals embodied or reified in the work movements, for example, in political correctness. It is politically incorrect and impolite and impolite to claim any advantage, any superiority. And if you do claim any difference, it's as a victim. Victimhood has taken over because stupid people are victims most of the time as they should be. As they should be, natural selection aims to get rid of stupid people.
And so they are victimized.
egalitarianism is running amok. Everyone is equal.
The doctor, the medical doctor and his patient, they're negotiating, they're talking as equals. They're not equals.
Professors and their students. The students dictate to the professor what to teach and how to teach. Experts and laymen. The layman says, it's only your opinion. Experts is just another opinion, equal to anyone else's.
This is beyond sick. This is dangerous. This is counterfactual, of course. People are not equal. If I am the expert, you shut up and learn.
End of story. I'm not interested in your opinion. I would, of course, be interested in your opinion if you acquire an education equal to mine, but not a minute before. And even then, if I'm more clever than you, if I have a higher IQ, you should still shut up and listen to me and learn from me because you are not my equal.
In an act of self-preservation, past civilisations had confined the stupid to certain settlements, replete with their drinking establishments, entertainments and sports arenas. The stupid congregated there, away from the mainstream and lacking any and every influence.
There, the intellectually challenged could safely torment each other with their vulgarities and rampant, uninformed idiocy. In these settlements, establishments, enclaves, prison islands, call them whatever you wish. We sequestered the stupid. We isolated their toxic impact.
But the advent of the radio, television and most egregiously, the internet, these technologies have changed all that.
Now, stupid people have unmitigated access to the commons. They control the kind of technology that allows them to pollute the airwaves and the broadband in our screens with their inferior analytic capacity, low brow output, trivial observations, monosyllabic exclamations and herbrained queries.
So, the new media have transformed stupidity from a mental endemic or pandemic to a viral pandemic.
The wise and the knowledgeable may broadcast while the stupid merely narrow cast. But the stupid have the upper hand because they have Google, they have Facebook, Twitter, Blogger, Amazon, YouTube. These are decimating traditional print and electronic media.
And as I say, I would like to repeat this. Stupidity used to be an endemic situation, an epidemic limited to specific locations. Now, it's a global viral pandemic.
And now, the stupid are empowered with technologies that allow them to transition from narrow casting to broadcasting.
The technological empowerment is the crux of the problem. There are no barriers to entry, no gatekeepers, no institutional filters, no erudite and experienced intermediaries or moderators to hold back the avalanche of Daltish Baladash, Baladash, the tsunami of nonsense, the flood of misinformation, factories and conspiracies that corrupt our intellectual space.
There's a problem of discovery, separating the wheat from the chaff. It's a mission impossible. You can't tell apart the pearls from the trash they're buried in.
Millions of books, so-called books, are published by Amazon every year. 99.99, and I don't know how many minds of them should have never been published or in the best tradition should be burned because they make it impossible to find the 100 truly good qualitative books that are published simultaneously.
Commercial interests inevitably and invariably side with the brainless masses, because the brainless masses have a much bigger aggregate purchasing power.
The privatization of education is one manifestation of this creeping decadence.
The mindless nature of television programming is another example. Video gates, the empty one-liners that comprise most conversations on social networks are the culmination of this.
We are surrounded with clods harassed by the lame brain, criticized, censored and ordered by simpletons. This may be the New Dark Ages, but we have hit a new low because the original Dark Ages were still controlled by intellectual elites of the church, the elite of the church, for example, educated clergymen. These New Dark Ages are controlled by the peasants.
Peasants have revolted, the sewer had exploded, and we are all floating in your know-what.