when people were shorter and lived by the water
I was browsing through Econlog this morning and found just the most amazing bit of analysis ever. I just had to share it with you all:
I focus a lot of my historical reading on the first World War and on the 1930s. I think that people were really stupid back then. I take the Flynn Effect seriously, which suggests that the average IQ several generations back was what today would be considered to be mentally retarded. In my view, this helps to explain how cheerfully the nations went to war in1914. Yes, the war turned out to be worse than what they expected. But how were their expectations not influenced by the Civil War or the Franco-Prussian war?
OMFG, people. World War I happened because world leaders 100 years or so ago were "mentally retarded"? Really?
So going back another 50 years or so, Abraham Lincoln must have been the intellectual equivalent of a spider monkey?
Go another 100 years back from that. The founding fathers were the mental equivalents of dung beatles?
Adam Smith had an IQ of 13?