Are We Becoming Stupider?

Discussion in 'Rant or Rave' started by metabolizm, Jun 28, 2020.

  1. metabolizm

    metabolizm Member

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    It seems indisputable that our ability to concentrate has been compromised over recent decades, and a good example of this is our preference for TV over literature. TV, even at its very best, is easier, requires less of us in terms of deep attention. The books that sell are generally the least challenging (I work in a library: I know). Public debate is a good demonstration of our inability to think clearly or even rationally. Be honest: do you usually struggle to read all the way to the end of an article? Did you skim-read even this paragraph?

    Are we becoming stupider?
     
  2. Tarmander

    Tarmander Member

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    More like certain types of intelligence are less rewarded then they once were.

    Creativity, complexity, consilience are all rewarded only in a few places.

    Obedience, thinking systematically, and memorization will get you much "farther"
     
  3. Dave Clark

    Dave Clark Member

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    Well, Dr. Peat said in a recent podcast that there is science that correlates the increase of vaccines of the 1980s with the brain not growing at the same rate as the rest of the body. In other words, the body is growing on schedule, but something in the vaccines is blunting brain growth, so smaller brains could mean stupider. So, not that it takes much imagination, but if people are getting stupider, it may not be just a learning deficit, but a physiological deficit.
     
  4. not_James_Bond

    not_James_Bond Member

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    Well;
    Dumbing down is the deliberate oversimplification of intellectual content in education, literature, and cinema, news, video games and culture. The term "dumbing down" originated in 1933, as movie-business slang used by screenplay writers, meaning: revise so as to appeal to those of little education or intelligence". Dumbing-down varies according to subject matter, and usually involves the diminishment of critical thought, by undermining intellectual standards within language and learning; thus trivializing meaningful information, culture, and academic standards, as in the case of popular culture.

    Above from Wikipedia.

    Media institutions soon learn that they aren’t selling their wares unless they appeal to the mentally lazy consumer.
     
  5. Tarmander

    Tarmander Member

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    This explains many people I have met
     
  6. magnesiumania

    magnesiumania Member

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    Yes technology made us stupider with its flickering dopamine twisting blue light screens.
     
  7. Uselis

    Uselis Member

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    Do you think it's possible to rewire it through digital fasting?
     
  8. magnesiumania

    magnesiumania Member

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    Not unless you get outside in full spectrum sunlight aswell.
     
  9. theoccident

    theoccident Member

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    Something does appear to be off, but humans adapt to technological changes. When humans went from oral traditions to reading and writing, many claimed something "will be loss", writing is too mechanical and less human, people will not interact or remember things the same way. All of these technologies (writing and paper are technologies) have always altered our behaviors and we adjust accordingly. Just as the Greek oralists thought people were "dumber" for not memorizing whole stories perfectly from memory, we are doing the same with our new technology. But this question of concentration and are we "stupider" crosses my mind as well.
     
  10. Nebula

    Nebula Member

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    Dopamine is getting desensitized/decreased and serotonin increasing in most people from many new stresses. That definitely doesn’t makes me feel smart. Numb and dumb.
     
  11. TheSir

    TheSir Member

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    I took a break from the internet for a couple of weeks in may. In just few days I started having more thoughts. I had more fun socializing and my sleep schedule began shifting earlier and earlier. Many former passions and hobbies became interesting again. Then I slipped back in and soon became lazy and stupid. I spend 5-10 hours on the net every day though, so it is a drastic difference in lifestyle even in practice. I have heard some say that the benefits will keep cumulating for months to come.
     
  12. Atman

    Atman Member

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    Yes we have, both from an environmental and from a genetic perspective, however you want to look at it.
    You can see it everywhere in our culture.
    People don't want to see it because they are blinded by our absolute level of technology as if this was a good metric.
    Another aspect which at first sight makes one sceptic about this idea is that relatively speaking so much more people are going through higher education. But if you actually look at some of these people who are going to university these days and what they are learning, you start to wonder.

    The first time I thought about this topic was when I started to read older european literature (1940 and before) and noticed that the vacabulary of these authors was larger and the amount of "general knowledge" about history etc. taken for granted exceeded what I learned in high school.
    Then I remembered a phrase an old, disgruntled physics professor of mine sometimes said. It went along the likes of: "Every year the new physics students, coming from highschool, are less capable." Then I started to see more and more signs and other feelings I had about certain areas of life made more sense.

    If you want to read more into that area from a hereditary perspective (warning: politically incorrect) you can look into the contemporary work of Richard Lynn or Edward Dutton/Michael Woodley. But the general ideas go as far back as to Francis Galton and their like.
     
  13. Atman

    Atman Member

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    I made somewhat related observations. I usually spent a lot of time on the internet and more often than I wish just letting me drift to whatever place I will end up.
    Feeling bad about myself, I then sometimes make the decision to stop spending so much time on the internet and instead do something else like reading a philosophy book. Initially it's always hard since I hardly can concentrate to keep the train of thought in some books because of the long sentence structures and the relatively long short term memory required to follow the author. Eventually I adapt and keep up with ease. At the same time I notice that my performance at work increases significantly and I can do what is expected from me with minimal effort which caused a lot of struggle before.
     
  14. maillol

    maillol Member

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    I don't think people are reaching full adulthood. Modern 30 year olds look like teenagers. I wouldn't be surprised if this arrested development is also affecting intelligence.
     
  15. Attakai

    Attakai Member

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    I think it's more to do with our reward circuits being hijacked than a lack of intelligence.
     
  16. peateats1

    peateats1 Member

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    Absolutely the population is ignorant af and has zero critical thinking skills. All I ever want to know is the absolute truth, but it seems a majority of people fall for either left, right, blm, racism, white hate/guilt, it goes on and on. It's funny that no one looks for who is actually pulling all the strings and guess what, those people hate all races and all humans and are sitting back laughing their asses off at everyone fighting each other and at how stupid we all are. I look around me and lose all hope for humanity because everyone is literally a walking zombie, and once their minds are gone and brainwashed there's no getting them back.
     
  17. TheSir

    TheSir Member

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    Yeah books are a good replacement, I found myself reading lot on my break too. Possibly even better would be to simply sit down and let your mind flow free until you are driven to do something else. Over time being like that should begin to feel as comfortable as mindlessly browsing the internet used to. I would be thrilled to get to a point where anytime I had nothing else to do I could just sit down on the couch and be entertained by my own thoughts or senses As of now sitting being idle like that feels uncomfortable, as if I should be doing something.
     
  18. Luann

    Luann Member

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    Not just stupider, but more used to lying to ourselves on a daily basis. I think people learn how to at a young age. Truth is not really a part of our value system at this point. I bet only a small fraction of people even knows that they lie to themselves.
     
  19. Uselis

    Uselis Member

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    I am yet to replicate half a year stint without internet I did several years ago. Silence is too uncomfortable to pass through first couple days now for me

    Back then I'd login only to check work schedule and salary. Took less then 5 minutes. As a result I took trains to random destinations in abroad country just out of pure boredom. I went to a date with girl that spoke different language from which I knew only handful of words. As you say - socializing became richer because I was forced to listen out share boredom. Most importantly creative thinking became much more alive and random joy without reason became daily occurance.

    Damn I am motivated to try again lol
     
  20. Vinny

    Vinny Member

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    I do

    Are we becoming stupider?

    Yes, obviously.
     
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