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Thread: Presidential IQ

  1. #1
    null Jonny's Avatar
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    Default Presidential IQ

    Here is a graph I made using the estimates of Presidential IQ provided by an article published in Political Psychology by Dean Keith Simonton.

    Presidential IQ, Openness, Intellectual Brilliance, and Leadership: Estimates and Correlations for 42 U.S. Chief Executives

    Abstract:
    Individual differences in intelligence are consistently associated with leader performance, including the assessed performance of presidents of the United States. Given this empirical significance, IQ scores were estimated for all 42 chief executives from George Washington to G. W. Bush. The scores were obtained by applying missing-values estimation methods (expectation-maximization) to published assessments of (a) IQ (Cox, 1926; n = 8), (b) Intellectual Brilliance (Simonton, 1986c; n = 39), and (c) Openness to Experience (Rubenzer & Faschingbauer, 2004; n = 32). The resulting scores were then shown to correlate with evaluations of presidential leadership performance. The implications for George W. Bush and his presidency were then discussed.




    I have also included normal distribution curves for the IQ of the general population and presidential population for comparison. (Forgive the prehistoric formatting, I'm using an older version of excel on a different computer for this one.)

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  2. #2
    Senior Member swordpath's Avatar
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    lol at Adams. That dude schools all them other muh fuckas.

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    ¡MI TORTA! Amethyst's Avatar
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    This seems way beyond inaccurate...

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    Senior Member ZPowers's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Beat View Post
    lol at Adams. That dude schools all them other muh fuckas.
    Weird that it's John Quincy Adams, mostly know for being the son of the first Adams and... that's about it. Also, I believe his presidency paved the way for Jackson, who ran the first successful everyman/populist-themed campaign in the nation's history. Which means today people would call him an elitist.

    Part of me agrees with Dr. Girlfriend, but I don't have in-depth enough knowledge to back it up.
    Does he want a pillow for his head?

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    null Jonny's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tawanda View Post
    This seems way beyond inaccurate...
    Yeah, I thought the Kennedy estimates seemed too high to be realistic. I edited my post to include the title and abstract from the study, for your reference.
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    null Jonny's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ZPowers View Post
    Weird that it's John Quincy Adams, mostly know for being the son of the first Adams and... that's about it. Also, I believe his presidency paved the way for Jackson, who ran the first successful everyman/populist-themed campaign in the nation's history. Which means today people would call him an elitist.

    Part of me agrees with Dr. Girlfriend, but I don't have in-depth enough knowledge to back it up.
    JQ Adams actually ran against Jackson and Jackson won a plurality of the electorate, but congress declared Adams the winner. Jackson was bitter and ran an intense campaign against Adams for the next 4 years, while Adams ignored him. As a result, Adams lost the presidency to Jackson 4 years later. Adams was arguably one of the greatest diplomats in American history, but like his father, wasn't much of a politician.
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    Senior Member ZPowers's Avatar
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    Well, either way it'd be cool to see where Obama ranks, but I guess the study was released pre-Obama or maybe he's just too recent for an accurate estimate?
    Does he want a pillow for his head?

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    null Jonny's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ZPowers View Post
    Well, either way it'd be cool to see where Obama ranks, but I guess the study was released pre-Obama or maybe he's just too recent for an accurate estimate?
    From Answers.com

    He has not released that information. From the information available:

    * The average IQ for a college graduate with a bachelor's degree in the U.S. is 115.

    Obama graduated Magna Cum Laude from Harvard Law School.

    * Obama's IQ has been estimated anywhere from 110-165. He is a graduate of Columbia University and Harvard Law School, where he served as editor, and later as president of the Harvard Law Review; which is an extremely prestigious position. Obama also taught at the University of Chicago for over 10 years, a top-ranked university in the United States. However, these achievement-based estimates fail to account for the possibility that Obama was a beneficiary of affirmative action, which based on collegiate averages would lower his estimated IQ to the 115-120 range.

    * Obama attended an elite private school in Honolulu as a scholarship student. Since all of the graduates from that school at that time took collegiate aptitude tests and he was not a National Merit Scholar, Semifinalist, or Outstanding Participant, his maximum possible score on the SAT was 1230, which is the 96.9 percentile. That would translate to a maximum possible IQ of 129. It should be noted, however, that one of the requirements for the National Merit Scholarship is taking the Preliminary SAT test. If Obama did not take the PSAT, he could very well have scored above 1230 on the SAT without being a National Merit Scholar.

    * Note: To many professionals in the 'IQ' field , this is all utterly absurd. I have no idea what Barack Obama's IQ is, but nobody with even a rudimentary understanding of what IQ means and how it is determined would suggest that any of the estimations methods (school grades and positions held at college) described in the answer have any validity whatsoever.

    * Affirmative Action helps minority students get into a prestigious school, not help them achieve when they get there. It's hard to believe that anyone who graduated second in his class out of the elite students could possibly have an IQ of 129 or less. Though the "Intelligence Quotient," or IQ is not the best determining factor for such an epistomological question one would need a higher IQ to understand the logic that goes along with American law. These answers are all speculation so the answer is undetermined and based on subjectivity. In order to become objective more research is necessary, especially on the basis of Harvard Law graduates. A study taking their mean IQ scores would be necessary. It couldn't even be combined with a study of the relation between SAT scores and IQ. Anyone could subjectively make up a number based on little true research and without warrant claim his IQ be 129.
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    Senior Member lowtech redneck's Avatar
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    Wasn't all of this famously discredited years ago?:rolli:

  10. #10
    Glowy Goopy Goodness The_Liquid_Laser's Avatar
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    Not only does this study seem a little nuts, but I don't see how IQ can be correlated with performance. First how do you objectively measure performance? Two people can look at the same president and one can think he was great while another thinks he's terrible.
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