Re: Mensa--a positive word

phil osborn (
Wed, 11 Aug 1999 18:59:58 PDT

>From: "Elizabeth Childs" <>
>Subject: Re: Mensa--a positive word
>Date: Wed, 11 Aug 1999 17:22:31 -0700
>Dr. Reifman said:
> > But, can't you see, thats the same problem--- SAT measures spatial
> > reasoning/math reasoning, and verbal --- How about Mensa including
> > criterion (kinesthetics, athleticism, music, social IQ, or EQ)?
>Is there some kind of standardized EQ test? If so, has it been found to
>actually be predictive for a person's social success? For example, do
>people with higher EQ report higher average levels of happiness, or have
>fewer divorces?
>If all the the EQ tests look like the one below, then it would be pretty
>easy for someone with a high IQ to score well on this test, even if they
>no social skills at all:
There are causes and effects in the social as well as the natural world. Everything behaves according to its nature, and when you find the original source for an institution, then you can pretty well guess what direction its future will take.

In the case of Mensa, the original source included Cyril Burt, who probably caused as much damage world-wide as Hitler. After Burt's death in the late '70's, it was discovered that his claim to fame - the famous twin studies that seemed to prove that intelligence was largely genetic - was fudged to get the politically correct (and personally valuable) result that Burt wanted. They found the original data in shoe boxes.

Burt became the leading light of British Commonwealth education on the basis of that study. The entire Commonwealth - and much of the rest of the world - set up educational tracking based on his falsified results. Montessori and all the other sources that appeared to show that intelligence could be vastly improved with the proper early childhood environment were "scientifically discredited."

It was not until the mass of evidence from the U. of Chicago - which resulted in Head Start and validated Piaget and Montessori - demonstrated the real importance of early childhood that education finally began to recover from Burt's fraud. His fraud makes Lysenko look like a piker. There is no instance of a scientific fraud that even comes within two orders of magnitude of Burt's, in terms of real world impact.

Yet Mensa has yet to repudiate Burt.... Why? Because the elitist do-nothings that make up the majority of Mensans - based on years of casual observation on my part, plus anecdotal testimony - are exactly the outcome you get when you have that kind of founding influence! For them to repudiate their source would take exactly the kind of intellectual integrity that they overwhelmingly lacked.

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