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Does being smart correlate with being good?


Posts: 968

tl;dr in [1], Spatial claimed that being smart causally correlates with being good. That is, being good does not guarantee that you are smart, but being smart guarantees that you are good (or strongly correlates with it).

I think it's an interesting question that deserves a topic in its own right.

So far, arguments against:

1. No, because many highly successful people are not benevolent.
2. Not if we believe being smart is hereditary, because evolution does not select for benevolence, just look at dolphins.
3. Being cruel requires intelligence.

Not many arguments for. However, I could see how being cruel and self-serving could be a sign of low intelligence. Lying in a job interview might seem like a good idea in the short term, but is probably harmful in the longer term. Recognizing that, planning ahead, to the point of being able to act on it, requires a high level of intelligence and a long-term vision, imho. Being able to look past yourself and society as a whole is, imho, a sign of intelligence.

I haven't made up my mind, because it's difficult to have a clear answer to the question. I feel like the most straightforward way to answer the question would be to look at the statistical average and see if smart people are good. But even then it wouldn't show a causal connection. Maybe it'd be better to take a look at happiness indicators. Often, genuinely altruistic people are happy, and happiness doesn't correlate very strongly with education. So, are intelligent people happy/altruistic?

Looking at dolphins or Donald Trump doesn't seem like a good idea. Looking at SC members doesn't seem like a good idea, either, although I'd say that the smartest people here also tend to be more moral.

[1] https://sociopathcommunity.com/Forum/Topic/26829/17/rank-the-smartest-people-on-sc#post191665

last edit on 3/12/2023 3:34:29 PM
Posts: 2860
0 votes RE: Does being smart correlate with being good?

I dont think its related. You can have more good or more evil characteristics and still be dumb or smart.

 


I think if you are smart, you will adapt to your characteristics and your environment to get what you want. So if you are evil, you will use that to your advantage. If you are good, you will use that instead.

 


Who are the moral and smartest people here?

Cheery bye!
Posts: 2479
0 votes RE: Does being smart correlate with being good?

I want to dispute that “being cruel requires intelligence”

Posts: 451
0 votes RE: Does being smart correlate with being good?

There's the bad and the badder.

Posts: 32915
0 votes RE: Does being smart correlate with being good?
Med said: 

I want to dispute that “being cruel requires intelligence”

What's stopping you? 

Ę̵̚x̸͎̾i̴͚̽s̵̻͐t̷͐ͅe̷̯͠n̴̤̚t̵̻̅i̵͉̿a̴̮͊l̵͍̂ ̴̹̕D̵̤̀e̸͓͂t̵̢͂e̴͕̓c̸̗̄t̴̗̿ï̶̪v̷̲̍é̵͔
last edit on 3/12/2023 8:10:20 PM
Posts: 968
0 votes RE: Does being smart correlate with being good?
Good said: 

I dont think its related. You can have more good or more evil characteristics and still be dumb or smart.

I think you can be an asshole on the inside but still be good due to your actions. I think there is some relationship, for sure, but I don't know how strong the relationship is.

 

I think if you are smart, you will adapt to your characteristics and your environment to get what you want. So if you are evil, you will use that to your advantage. If you are good, you will use that instead.

I think the argument is more that being good is in your best interest. A bit like, imagine that society was run by cutthroats. Would you prefer that over a society that was good? Irrespective of your characteristics and tendencies, you would probably want to work together with others towards a better society, because it's in your best interest. Despite the short-term gain from fucking people over and lying. I think recognizing that being moral is in your best interest in the longer term requires some level of intelligence. It's like recognizing meta-level consequences, the consequences that are not immediately obvious on a month or even a year timescale.

Having said that, it comes down to the data.

Who are the moral and smartest people here?

Myself, Alice, Spatial, you.

last edit on 3/12/2023 9:22:07 PM
Posts: 5402
0 votes RE: Does being smart correlate with being good?

i'm stupid and mean. You dumbass

Posts: 2407
0 votes RE: Does being smart correlate with being good?

Idk is good smart? He is the owner of SC so that could suggest one extreme or the other. Maybe both. 

What do you think?

🌺🐀 🌺
Posts: 2407
0 votes RE: Does being smart correlate with being good?
Xadem said: 

i'm stupid and mean. You dumbass

 Mmmmm yes, arse niblets. Yes indeed. 

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Posts: 523
1 votes RE: Does being smart correlate with being good?

No.

The blood on my hands covered the holes
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