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Do Liberals, Atheists Have Higher IQs?
Date:3/9/2010

Study links intelligence test scores with key beliefs and male monogamy

TUESDAY, March 9 (HealthDay News) -- People who consider themselves liberals or atheists tend to have higher IQs than those who are more religious or conservative, a new study suggests.

Higher IQs also seem to make men less likely to cheat. Men with higher IQs place a higher value on sexual fidelity than men with lower IQs, although the same association with intelligence and monogamy was not found in women, according to the study.

The reasons underlying the differences can be explained by evolution, contends study author Satoshi Kanazawa, an evolutionary psychologist at the London School of Economics and Political Science.

In evolutionary terms, religion stems from humans' tendency to try to make sense of natural phenomenon. "Humans are evolutionarily designed to be paranoid, and they believe in God because they are paranoid," Kanazawa said. "This innate bias toward paranoia served humans well when self-preservation and protection of their families and clans depended on extreme vigilance to all potential dangers."

Likewise, humans have probably also evolved to have a natural tendency toward being conservative, which Kanazawa defines as having a strong preference toward caring for relatives and friends.

The purpose of intelligence, on the other hand, is to help humans cope with and solve novel problems. Therefore, more intelligent people are more likely to have religious and political preferences that go against the grain, such as atheism or a rejection of a higher power, and liberalism, which is provisionally defined in the study as caring about people who are unrelated to you.

"More intelligent individuals are more likely to recognize and comprehend evolutionarily novel entities and situations," Kanazawa said. "Some of these evolutionarily novel entities and situations form the basis of values, preferences and l
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