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Biggest Brains Tend To Hatch Biggest Snafus
IBD Editorials ^ | September 29, 2009 | The great THOMAS SOWELL

Posted on 09/28/2009 6:17:53 PM PDT by Kaslin

Many people, including some conservatives, have been very impressed with how brainy the president and his advisers are. But that is not quite as reassuring as it might seem.

It was, after all, Franklin D. Roosevelt's brilliant "Brains Trust" advisers whose policies are now increasingly recognized as having prolonged the Great Depression of the 1930s, while claiming credit for ending it. The Great Depression ended only when World War II put an end to many New Deal policies.

FDR himself said that "Dr. New Deal" had been replaced by "Dr. Win-the-War." But those today who are for big spending like to credit wartime big spending for bringing the Great Depression to an end. They never ask the question as to why previous depressions had always ended on their own, much faster than the one under FDR, and without government intervention or massive government spending.

Brainy folks were also present in Lyndon Johnson's administration, especially in the Pentagon, where Secretary of Defense Robert McNamara's brilliant "whiz kids" tried to micromanage the Vietnam War, with disastrous results.

There is usually only a limited amount of damage that can be done by dull or stupid people. For creating a truly monumental disaster, you need people with high IQs.

Such people have been told all their lives how brilliant they are, until finally they feel forced to admit it, with all due modesty. But they not only tend to overestimate their own brilliance, more fundamentally they tend to overestimate how important brilliance itself is when dealing with real world problems.

Many crucial things in life are learned from experience, rather than from clever thoughts or clever words. Indeed, a gift for the clever phrasing so much admired by the media can be a fatal talent, especially for someone chosen to lead a government.

(Excerpt) Read more at investors.com ...


TOPICS: Editorial
KEYWORDS: brainyheadedbo; sowell; thomassowell

1 posted on 09/28/2009 6:17:54 PM PDT by Kaslin
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To: bareford101; BerniesFriend; blaveda; Bookwoman; Celeste732; dsc; Faux_Pas; fortunecookie; ...

2 posted on 09/28/2009 6:19:07 PM PDT by Kaslin (Acronym for 0bama: One Big Ass Mistake America)
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To: Kaslin

Great analysis. Intelligence is not the same as infailability. It is exactly the tendancy of those who are considered intelligent for too much fondness for their own ideas no matter how flawed that causes huge messes. Practical simple solutions are far too often disregarded for the sake of novelty.


3 posted on 09/28/2009 6:25:16 PM PDT by Maelstorm (Party like it's 1776!)
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To: Kaslin
"There are some ideas so wrong that only a very intelligent person could believe in them."

- George Orwell

4 posted on 09/28/2009 6:31:29 PM PDT by HoosierHawk (www.firstsundaymusic.com)
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To: Kaslin
Man Oh Man, it’s not fair that people like Dr. Sowell are so smart and people like me can only recognize and appreciate his brilliance.
5 posted on 09/28/2009 6:35:07 PM PDT by Family Guy (I disagree with what you said, but I'll defend to the death your right to shut up.)
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To: Kaslin

The biggest continuing fallacy is that these people are smart. Off the teleprompter, Obama sounds like a nitwit. He couldn’t hang in an aggressive conversation/argument at the local bar. Hillary Clinton? Are you kidding me? Much of what comes out of her mouth is pure mindless, whiney drivel, and she exhibits no particular talent whatsoever. People like Geithner? Hugely overmatched by his job. This bs about Ivy League people being ‘smart’ is absurd. They are poorly educated numb nuts who were/are naive enough to buy into leftist propaganda, while the common truck driver sniffs that crap out in about two minutes. Smart, my ass. This administration is really dumb, and without the constant cover provided by the media, most would acknowledge them to be the national joke that they are.


6 posted on 09/28/2009 6:37:48 PM PDT by raptor29
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To: Kaslin

7 posted on 09/28/2009 6:38:33 PM PDT by Repeal The 17th (I AM JIM THOMPSON!)
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To: raptor29

I believe he sounds very smart when he’s talking to “his people”, ie the leftists.

He only sounds like a nitwit talking to America because he’s being careful not to say anything that can be used against him ...


8 posted on 09/28/2009 6:42:42 PM PDT by MetaThought
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To: MetaThought

You kidding me? You didn’t hear him during his campaign speeches when he went off-script? It was embarrassing. You’ve bought into the bs.


9 posted on 09/28/2009 6:48:27 PM PDT by raptor29
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To: Kaslin
Far too many people have confused indecision with brilliance.
10 posted on 09/28/2009 6:54:01 PM PDT by SampleMan (No one should die on a gov. waiting list., or go broke because the gov. has dictated their salary.)
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To: Kaslin

I’ve always said that the smartest people make the stupidest mistakes!

Someday, I hope to stop doing that..


11 posted on 09/28/2009 6:57:32 PM PDT by Randy Larsen ( BTW, If I offend you! Please let me know, I may want to offend you again!)
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To: Kaslin
... a gift for the clever phrasing so much admired by the media can be a fatal talent, especially for someone chosen to lead a government.

I think "fatal" is an unfortunate choice of word in this context - some will take it literally.

12 posted on 09/28/2009 6:59:56 PM PDT by Cboldt
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To: Kaslin

"It was, after all, Franklin D. Roosevelt's brilliant "Brains Trust" advisers
whose policies are now increasingly recognized as having prolonged the
Great Depression of the 1930s, while claiming credit for ending it.
"

Similar cockiness as well.

13 posted on 09/28/2009 7:04:04 PM PDT by HowlinglyMind-BendingAbsurdity
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To: Kaslin
Many crucial things in life are learned from experience, rather than from clever thoughts or clever words...and of course when one has achieved most of what he has in life through affirmative action and not through being measured in his actual strengths and aptitudes, he is denied the success and failure experience needed to learn those crucial things...until he finally releases his grades and other school records I won't be convinced, certainly not by anything I've seen so far, that Obama got through Columbia and Harvard on the basis of his smarts rather than his race....
14 posted on 09/28/2009 7:16:15 PM PDT by Intolerant in NJ
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To: Kaslin
Take away the freedom and you take away the risk, but you will also destroy economic growth. This is beneath Sowell, he knows better.
15 posted on 09/28/2009 7:24:06 PM PDT by JasonC
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To: Kaslin
Many people, including some conservatives, have been very impressed with how brainy the president and his advisers are.

No creative or original thought, no facility of language and not a whit of wit. The president is not brainy. The proof is off tele-prompter. He's simply learned well what he's been taught.

16 posted on 09/28/2009 7:29:56 PM PDT by fullchroma (Obama: GET OUT OF MY DOCTOR'S OFFICE!)
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To: Kaslin
SNAFU = Situation Normal: All Forked Up
.
17 posted on 09/28/2009 8:50:21 PM PDT by Iron Munro (You can't kill the beast while sucking at its teat - Claire Wolfe)
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To: raptor29
I fully agree with you. I think Obama is an idiot without a clue. What original idea has he ever proposed? It is just all leftest theory he grew up with, with no real experience ever.

An Ivy League education is no guarantee of common sense or even actual intelligence. Someone with a great memory and a good work ethic can do very well in school. But when it comes to actual problem solving, specifically to problems that haven't been solved before, they can be complete failures in spite of all that education. Schools really don't teach problem solving for the most part. They teach tools that can be applied to the process.

18 posted on 09/28/2009 9:02:44 PM PDT by DB
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To: Kaslin
Many crucial things in life are learned from experience, rather than from clever thoughts or clever words.

A lesson that seems to be re-learned every generation...after the foul-up.

19 posted on 09/28/2009 9:16:49 PM PDT by Smokin' Joe (How often God must weep at humans' folly. Stand fast. God knows what He is doing.)
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To: raptor29
The biggest continuing fallacy is that these people are smart...This bs about Ivy League people being ‘smart’ is absurd. They are poorly educated numb nuts who were/are naive enough to buy into leftist propaganda, while the common truck driver sniffs that crap out in about two minutes.

Mark Twain said, "Never let your schooling interfere with your education."

Or as a wise professor of mine once said, "In college you spend four years learning the rules, you spend the rest of your life learning the exceptions."

20 posted on 09/28/2009 9:22:51 PM PDT by Smokin' Joe (How often God must weep at humans' folly. Stand fast. God knows what He is doing.)
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To: DB
It is just all leftest theory he grew up with, with no real experience ever.

When I was in college, we had a dyed-in-the-wool, card-carrying token Communist in our department (student, not faculty).

THe guy attempted proseletyzing briefly his Marxist babble, and could recite chapter and worse, but when pressed to phrase an answer to a question in his own words (off the beaten script), the guy just could not do it.

While they can parrot the babble they are spewing, they neither understand the theory, nor can they apply it to the real world. One more reason for them to be ensconced in purely artificial constructs such as academia or government, insulated from reality as we know it.

21 posted on 09/28/2009 9:28:58 PM PDT by Smokin' Joe (How often God must weep at humans' folly. Stand fast. God knows what He is doing.)
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To: Kaslin
Many people, including some conservatives, have been very impressed with how brainy the president and his advisers are.

???

Say what? This is the first time I have seen the word "brainy" used when referring to the Ubama crowd. Using "brainy", or any word like it, to describe that bunch wouldn't occur to me in a million years. In fact, my fear is that they are even more dimwitted than they appear.

Yikes... This is from Tom Sowell?

22 posted on 09/28/2009 9:41:53 PM PDT by Lancey Howard
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To: Smokin' Joe

How do you tell a Communist? Well, it’s someone who reads Marx and Lenin. And how do you tell an anti-Communist? It’s someone who understands Marx and Lenin.-——————Ronald Reagan


23 posted on 09/28/2009 10:04:23 PM PDT by piasa (Attitude adjustments offered here free of charge)
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To: piasa
Perfect.

You can tell the card-carrying evangelical Communist, but you can't tell 'em much...

24 posted on 09/28/2009 10:09:56 PM PDT by Smokin' Joe (How often God must weep at humans' folly. Stand fast. God knows what He is doing.)
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To: Lancey Howard

Think alleged conservative pundits, not actual conservative people, and Dr Sowell’s observation makes sense.


25 posted on 09/29/2009 5:33:23 AM PDT by maica (Freedom consists not in doing what we like,but in having the right to do what we ought. John Paul II)
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To: raptor29

“The biggest continuing fallacy is that these people are smart. Off the teleprompter, Obama sounds like a nitwit. He couldn’t hang in an aggressive conversation/argument at the local bar. Hillary Clinton? Are you kidding me? Much of what comes out of her mouth is pure mindless, whiney drivel, and she exhibits no particular talent whatsoever. People like Geithner? Hugely overmatched by his job. This bs about Ivy League people being ‘smart’ is absurd. They are poorly educated numb nuts who were/are naive enough to buy into leftist propaganda, while the common truck driver sniffs that crap out in about two minutes. Smart, my ass. This administration is really dumb, and without the constant cover provided by the media, most would acknowledge them to be the national joke that they are.”

Raptor you hit the nail on the head. Barack Obama as POTUS is a product of both Affirmative Action and the Peter Principle run amok. This fraud has never held a real job or had to make a payroll; I wouldn’t trust Obama to run a hot dog stand. These Ivy League twits are nothing but brain-washed leftist posers who think they are smarter than they really are. The so-called MSM, who represent the “C” students” of the world, adore these pencil-necks, really because most of the media twerps went to the 2nd and 3rd tier colleges or universities and believe the crap aboput the Ivy League superiority.


26 posted on 09/29/2009 5:43:35 AM PDT by astounded (The democrat party is a clear and present danger to America.)
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To: Kaslin

“Many people, including some conservatives, have been very impressed with how brainy the president and his advisers are.”

Pfft. Mediocre, at best.

The knee-pad media always blather about how smart the leftards are, and how stupid their opponents are, and it has no connection with reality.

Except, of course, in that media slugs tend to be of inferior intelligence, which means that 110-120 really is bright in comparison to *them*.


27 posted on 09/29/2009 7:11:11 AM PDT by dsc (Any attempt to move a government to the left is a crime against humanity.)
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To: Intolerant in NJ

“achieved most of what he has in life through affirmative action”

I called him “the affirmative-action president,” but it didn’t catch on.


28 posted on 09/29/2009 7:14:18 AM PDT by dsc (Any attempt to move a government to the left is a crime against humanity.)
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