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Height is an interesting metaphor for intelligence. Both are incredibly socially valued traits for a man to have and if someone is taller or smarter than us, we look up to them literally or figuratively, respectively, and we refer to people who are exceptionally bright or exceptionally dull as intellectual giants or mental midgets respectively. Of course height is a physical variable that is measured directly in feet and inches on an absolute ratio scale, while intelligence is an abstract variable that is measured by comparing people to the norm of Western countries at the time that they live. So if you have the average intelligence of a Westerner of your generation, you’re assigned a deviation IQ (intelligence quotient) of 100. Of course most people deviate from the mean, and the standard amount that people deviate is defined as 15 IQ points, so the IQ range of 85 to 115 defines the limits of normal intelligence and 2/3rds of Westerners fall within this range.

Height could be measured on the same relative scale as IQ is, as Jensen once noted, we just don’t bother because we have an absolute scale to measure height on (feet and inches). But if we did measure height on this relative scale, we would call the scores HQ’s (height quotients). The height distribution of young white American men has a mean of 5’10.4″ and a standard deviation of 2.58 inches, so equating these values with 100 and 15 respectively allows us to assign men the following HQ’s based on their heights (if you’re older than 40 or younger than 20, you may want to add an age bonus to your HQ; if you’re a woman, add about 32 points to your HQ, so a 7 foot tall woman would have an HQ of about 211 instead of 179):

7 feet tall = HQ 179
6’11” = HQ 173
6’10” = HQ 167
6’9″ = HQ 162
6’8″ = HQ 156
6’7″ = HQ 150
6’6″ = HQ 144
6’5″ = HQ 138
6’4″ = HQ 133 (Extremely tall)
6’3″ = HQ 127
6’2″ = HQ 121 (Very tall)
6’1″ = HQ 115 (Tall)
6’0″ = HQ 109
5’11” = HQ 103
5’10” = HQ 98 (Average)
5’9″ = HQ 92
5’8″ = HQ 86 (Short)
5’7″ = HQ 80
5’6″ = HQ 74 (Very short)
5’5″ = HQ 69 (Extremely short)
5’4″ = HQ 63
5’3″ = HQ 57
5’2″ = HQ 51
5’1″ = HQ 45
5’0″ = HQ 40

Being six feet tall is considered a respectable height for a man and men who are around six feet tall proudly proclaim that they are on message boards like this one. And yet 6 feet equates to an HQ of “only” 109. Few men would proudly proclaim their IQ is 109, even though men value their height just as much as their intelligence, if not more so. So why the double standard? I believe it’s because unlike height, no one can directly observe our intelligence so it’s extremely tempting to lie about it, and since everyone else is lying or very selectively and disingenuously reporting their IQ’s, massive IQ inflation occurs, and we have to greatly inflate our IQ’s just to keep them in the same rank order as everyone else’s self-reported IQ’s. As I’ve stated, a Promethean once knew a couple dozen people, all with alleged IQ’s above 170. His estimate for the actual IQ’s of this group? 115.

The above chart shows that a seven foot tall man has an HQ 139 points higher than a five foot tall man. Since height and IQ are correlated, does this mean seven footers are 139 IQ points smarter than five footers. No. Because the correlation between IQ and height is only 0.2, seven foot men would on average be 0.2(139) = 28 IQ points smarter than five foot men.

The other key point is that when men and women are the same height, the woman has an HQ that is 32 points higher (since these HQ scores are assigned relative to gender). Since men and women differ enormously in height but are virtually identical in IQ, and since height and IQ correlate 0.2 within both genders, when a man and woman are the same height, the woman have an IQ that is 0.2(32) = 6 points higher.

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