On Not Letting Cognitive Capital Go To Waste

America’s cognitive capital may be it’s important resource, and it should not be squandered, which is why we need more funding for gifted education. Or as some call ‘Purple Policies‘.

The ROI from investing in America’s gifted youth is very high, as the study Who Rises to the Top? Early Indicators shows:

The findings are also summarized in a Tedx talk by University of Minnesota prof. Nathan Kuncel.

This is why we need more testing – to help identity these gifted and talented students. But of course, the left blames the usual suspects – cultural biases, racism, poverty, and so on – for why we need to do away with tests, unless everyone scores equally bad or the test is so easy everyone scores well, which could explain the inexorable trend of dumbing-down the SAT.

Furthermore, smarter people are more economically productive:

We calculated expectable wealth productivity effects (in US Dollar of 2010/2011). Internationally, one IQ point corresponds to $810 higher average productivity per capita and year. Between 2012 and 2060 it is expected that 17 year olds’ ability level will increase by 2.16 (pessimistic model) or 3.68 IQ (optimistic model), representing a productivity gain of $1,750 to $2,981 (at constant prices). The general FLynn effect (White’s slow ability rise) contributes at about $219 to $1,806, minorities’ catch up at $1,644 to $1,450, demographic change at–$1,102, interaction between minorities’ catch up and demographic change at $988 to $834 US Dollar.

Source: Future Cognitive Ability: US IQ Prediction until 2060 Based on NAEP

This is corroborated by the new book Hive Mind: How Your Nation’s IQ Matters So Much More Than Your Own which finds that smarter countries have higher per-capita incomes.