In another blow to our already wilting sense of competence, the UK reports that according to research from the Centre for Market and Public Organisation, lawyers surveyed there who were born in 1970 (now climbing the legal ranks) have lower IQs than lawyers assessed in 1958 (and now either in very senior management or already out the door). Lawyers in the older group scored 11% better than the average, while the younger group were just 8% more intelligent.
The comparison to the average fell for most other vocations as well, with an average drop of 1%. Doctors, teachers, bankers and stock brokers all moved closer to average intelligence, while artists, engineers, scientists and journalists became more intelligent compared to average IQ scores, the research found.
One pauses over the long-term evolutionary implications.
Than again, surely there’s a way to view this trend chauvinistically. These results are only for the UK, right? Without any official comparable data in the US, we can comfortably surmise that we in the US retain our IQ lead over the masses. On the other hand, with all the cross-Atlantic trafficking in lawyers that has gone on lately, the Brits might argue that this is just another example of the net brain drain of allowing Yanks to work there.
In any event, we hear the murmur of senior lawyers everywhere saying "I told you so."