Good post. I agree that having a very high IQ is not a guarantee to riches, but I do believe that it helps and that certain jobs have a high IQ floor (an IQ one must have to be successful).
“Actually, IQ income advantage maxes out at ~125. After that, incomes start to decline with increasing IQ, probably because very high IQ’s are associated with, well, a bit of weirdness and out there-ness.”
I’m not so sure. Companies like Google, Goldman Sachs, etc. hire the cream of the Ivies, and they all have IQ’s over 125.
As far as succeeding in science, there is a very high floor if you want to be a top-notch scientist (around IQ 150).
I see many bright young men on the Internet who are convinced that a high IQ (presumably their IQ) is going to lead them to riches. This is certainly an overestimation at best and a conceit at worst.
I used to work as a security guard at a place called Three Arch Bay in Laguna Beach, California. It is one of the most exclusive (wealthiest) communities in the US. I got to know a lot of the rich people who lived there, but my general impression was that while they were pretty intelligent (average IQ at least), they were not really all that smart from my perspective (IQ 147).
They did tend to have crafty minds that worked strategically, superb street smarts, excellent social skills, psychological stability, and often very good looks. And some were simply ruthless. One thing they had in common was extroversion, a positive, optimistic personality and a love of the sensual life of experience as opposed to the life of the mind. Most of them acted like they found intellectual activities to be boring. They seemed like they preferred to be around people. A number of them made money in business and told me that they thought college was a waste of time.
My mother grew up around a lot of very rich people, and she told me much the same thing: the rich are not stupid, but most of them are not geniuses or intellectuals by any stretch of the imagination.
If you think this website is valuable to you, please consider a contribution to support the continuation of the site. This is my only job.