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Sunday, June 30, 2013

Education does not determine how smart you are

I don't know if you knew this or not, but education does not determine how smart you are.  There are some very well educated people in this world who haven't an ounce of smarts.  Just think of all the people in Washington who think they understand how the economy works, and they just keep making it worse and worse.  These are people with Harvard degrees. 

So this is the false conception we get about degrees.  You have people who got C's and D's in high school, people who were never comfortable for whatever reason in the school setting, who educate themselves and do very will in life. 

Rush Limbaugh is a good example.  Like him or hate him, he has to be smart in order to get millions of people to tune him in every day.  Sean Hannity is another one.  Harry S. Truman never went to college, and neither did most of our founders.  Henry Knox was the first Secretary of war, and he educated himself through books.  These are people who basically educated themselves, and they are (or were) very smart.

I had a patient a few years ago who told me that he was staring out the window his Junior year of high school.  His teacher walked by his desk, smacked the ruler on his desk making a horrendous sound, and said, "If you want to make it anywhere in this life you need to stop looking out that window and pay attention in class."

He said to his teacher, "There's some fishy looking guys walking around out there, and those are my trucks. I have a business, and if my trucks get stolen I won't be able to make money."

This guy already had a successful business, and he was horrible in school.  He did pretty well for himself during the coarse of his life, and he never graduated. 

My grandpa kept skipping school. He was called to the Principal's office.  The principal said, "If you miss one more day of school you might as well not bother coming back."  Grandpa said, "Okay."  He never went back. 

My grandpa created the family business that my dad sold about ten years ago and is now living a pretty darn good retirement.  Yes, I might even have an inheritance so long as my mom doesn't die before my dad does.  My mom, with no college education either, is rather smart and frugal with money.  I think dad would be the opposite.  However, both are quite uneducated and smart. 

So there!  Any questions, comments or concerns let me know in the comments below.  But if you aren't nice, you still might be smart. 


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