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Mensa Squared

Capitalize on the ego of the genius for fun and profit.
  (+16, -7)(+16, -7)
(+16, -7)
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Design a test targeted toward Mensa members in order to weed out the top 2%. Charge double the amount that it cost to take the original Mensa test and watch your bank account grow. The idea being that they've already invested a significant amount on the original Mensa (perhaps taking the test numerous times) and are vulnerable in the same way that senior citizens fall for a scam repeatedly, and then fall for another one that promises to right what has been done to them.

Successful candidates could be given a token business card and be invited to an annual game of scrabble.

ArtVandelay, Sep 26 2001

What are mensans like? http://www.mensa.or.../mensa/mensans.html
[pottedstu, Sep 26 2001, last modified Oct 04 2004]

Steven Gould: The Mismeasure of Man http://www.amazon.c...93314251/halfbakery
This classic has a comprehensive history of "intelligence testing", initially conceived as a tool for detecting students that need help, and quickly abused and misunderstood (especially in the US) as measuring a single hereditary, immutable quality of "intelligence". [jutta, Sep 26 2001]

Uncommonly Difficult IQ Tests http://www.eskimo.com/~miyaguch/
And they're not kidding. Scroll down a few pages for more High-IQ societies than you can shake a cerebral cortex at. [jutta, Sep 26 2001]

Giga Society http://www.gigasociety.org/
[BinaryCookies, Aug 11 2002]

far right members http://www.nowpubli...iam-pierce-adherent
[Hanfgeist, Feb 24 2009]

[link]






       Mensa. What's THAT all about, eh?   

       In Britain at least, the organization is repeatedly having trouble with ultra-right-wing white-supremacists assuming positions of power, and internecine political squabbles that make the court of Caligula look like the Teletubbies.   

       The most famous British Mensans are Garry Bushell, noted homophobe and racist, recently sacked from a job as the Sun's TV critic for selling writing to a rival newspaper. D'oh! Also Sir Jimmy Saville, noted Norman Bates-esque weirdo and former TV presenter; Jeremy Handley (close political ally of John Major, and fellow member of the nice-but-ineffective wing of the Tory party.) Intermittently successful businessman Clive Sinclair (inventor of the ZX Spectrum, yay, and C5 electric car, boo, and a terrible poker player if you've ever seen celebrity Late Night Poker on Channel 4), and Scottish DIY expert Carol Smillie. Hardly the cream of the British intellectual elite.   

       That's not me being nasty; that's paragraph 1 from the Britsh Mensa's "famous Mensans", admittedly plus comments, but no names added or omitted.   

       In America, Sharon Stone and Geena Davis are both Mensa members; I'm not entirely sure how you square Earth Girls Are Easy with that.
pottedstu, Sep 26 2001
  

       Heh. I like your text much better than what's on that page, [pottedstu].   

       This is just a rant ("Mensans are too full of themselves") combined with a redundant invention in a field that the poster doesn't know anything about, or he'd have noticed that the world is already teeming with those mega-mega intelligent societies.
jutta, Sep 26 2001
  

       It's probably baked too. Without boasting (no really) the mock questions from mensa entrance exams are so easy as to suggest that the motivation for the society is not to bring together intellectuals but rather to make a quick buck.   

       I'd be quite surprised if there weren't another test to bring you into the 'inner circle' or some such.
st3f, Sep 26 2001
  

       In preparation for my first job-hunt, I joined Mensa because I thought it would look good on my resume. My college entrance exam scores were accepted, so all it cost me was the (then) $35 annual membership fee.   

       During that year, they kept sending me invitations to monthly local meetings, so I decided to check one out. I'm naturally fairly shy, so I wasn't very comfortable meeting all these strangers, and since I was a young single guy in a new city, my discomfort was compounded by the fact that hanging out with this somewhat lumpy, somewhat balding, more-than-somewhat nerdish group was not going to get me any dates (I have, I hope, grown less judgmental since then).   

       But I was surprised by how quickly I built a rapport with these people. The discussion sparkled with quick, dry, wit, amusing puns, references to trivia as if it were common knowledge, and not only correct grammar and usage, but even pedantry. For what I think must have been the first time in my life, I felt that this was a community in which I didn't have to edit my comments nor my interpretation of others' comments to accommodate a generally lower level of intelligence. It was an exhilarating experience.   

       Now, as pompous as that last remark sounds (and no doubt I've included a spelling or grammatical error that will also render it ironic), I believe many readers will know what I mean. You see, I never went to another meeting, and let my membership lapse. I never again found that same kind of community except for one place.   

       That's right. The halfbakery.
beauxeault, Sep 26 2001
  

       When I was intelligent, The Head of the County Department of Education had a meeting with me - he suggested I join Mensa - after some discussion about the group - he said "You know, maybe you're better off not joining - they are (long pause) geeky (emphatic)".
thumbwax, Sep 26 2001
  

       //(perhaps taking the test numerous times) //   

       You can only sit the Mensa test once in your life.
mighty_cheese, Sep 27 2001
  

       Oh contraire, UnaBubba. Wargaming presents one of life's great opportunities to pummel your friends egos without any Risk to your physical well being.

But you're right about Mensa. It's crap!
DrBob, Sep 27 2001
  

       (as opposed to Croquet, in which egos get annihilated, but there is a small risk of physical injury)

Does anyone else see a link between high IQ (whatever IQ is) and poor web design skills?
hippo, Sep 27 2001
  

       I just had a look at the Mensa website and was amused to read that "1 in 50 people have an IQ in the top 2%". Unbelievable statistics.
stupop, Sep 27 2001
  

       Well, 1 in 50 people is 2 in 100 people, and that is 2%. Sign me up.
Bonarein, Sep 27 2001
  

       Ah, but what if there were 70 people?
Lemon, Sep 27 2001
  

       [bonarein] § really? §
stupop, Oct 15 2001
  

       Mensa is so annoying. I can't believe I almost joined.
ironfroggy, Mar 30 2002
  

       I'm single and in a professional position where hitting on co-workers is a little out of the question. Guys in bars are almost always on the make and have IQs that match the length of their most important organ. My local Mensa group is full of interesting people including a couple of peculiar types (still both are well mannered dolls). I'm not sure where others on this board are getting their information about what Mensa is but my experience has been without exception pleasant. Mensa means different things for each of its members but for me - it's a nice place to go and get away from the office talk about last night's repeat of the Golden Girls -- and maybe even talk to smart guys that don't try so hard. If Mensa is a money machine -- it's no different from membership dues in any other club. I can't think of a better way to spend $49 --- that's a full year of entertainment.
DonnaC, Jul 23 2002
  

       Welcome to the halfbakery, DonnaC
Enlighten us further, if you please.
thumbwax, Jul 24 2002
  

       Thanks for the welcome Thumbwax, I guess it was a good idea to bookmark this page - :) What I wanted to get across in my last post was that some of the labels posters on the board had attached to Mensa might be a little suspect. I wonder how many of those who offered critcisms of Mensa or its members have been to a national or even a local Mensa meeting. Better, how many have even knowingly met a Mensa member before coming to the sweeping, general conclusions that Mensans are "jerks," "geeks," or "annoying." Some of the best and most civic minded people I know are members of my local group. True, not every local member shares my interests and not every member has a personality I would want to be around 24/7 ---- but this is true in any aspect of life --- This doesn't make them anything other than someone who has different likes and dislikes from me. Friends are made in Mensa just like they're made anywhere else - by common interests -- joining a group like Mensa dramatically increased those odds for me. So, while I can't say for sure, the criticisms here have the look and feel of conclusions based on air. There - I've said it -- How's that for a second post - hope I didn't raise too many hackles. :)
DonnaC, Jul 24 2002
  

       This idea has been baked for years. There are a number of high IQ societies which represent not only those in the top 98% of IQ but also the top 99%, top 99.5%, top 99.8%, top 99.9% and top 99.99% (no lie). I think the last is called the Giga Society.
Wayne, Aug 09 2002
  

       <Capitalize on the ego of the genius for fun>Actually, Giga Society is comprised of those in 99.9999999th percentile.</Capitalize on the ego of the genius for fun>
thumbwax, Aug 10 2002
  

       DonnaC: enquiring minds want to know if the lengths of (male) Mensa members' members match their IQs...?
DrCurry, Aug 10 2002
  

       DrCurry, the answer is yes, but in millimeters. i noticed a severe lack of female members, I guess intelligent women have somewhere to go..
pfperry, Aug 10 2002
  

       [Wayne] That would be the top 2%, 1%... 0.01% <pedant>
Gwenanda, Aug 10 2002
  

       <pfperry> - When you took those measurements were the "male mensa members' members flaccid? If flaccid that's not a bad size --- if not flaccid they're sort of small -- but other questions arise---
DonnaC, Aug 11 2002
  

       The Giga Society's web site(see link) says that the IQ required to join is only achieved by one in a billion people. Wouldn't that mean that there is only _six_ members at maximum?   

       And for super geniuses, they sure didn't make a very good web site. Surely they can work Macromedia Dreamweaver and Photoshop, with their superior IQ's, right?   

       3 people = society?
BinaryCookies, Aug 11 2002
  

       Donna C. I'm jealous because even if I had the bucks I'd definately fail the test, Mensa is exclusive to me. You see I don't even have the intelligence to mask my jealousy with sarcasm. I'm poor, thick and feel really at home in halfbakery because no one has noticed yet...oops! Maybe us drongo's of IQ under par could buy into a club where we could go along to observe the intelligent at work or rather at play, perhaps that'd raise it a bit? You could hide us behind a table or a sofa or something, so we wouldn't spoil the mood.
Borallah, Sep 06 2002
  

       My problem with Mensa is simply that I don't believe simple pattern-matching quizzes truly represent IQ. I've known some brilliant people that might have trouble with the pattern-matching problems. That won't stop me from joining, however, because a piece of paper that "proves" I'm smarter than 98% of the rest of the population is something worth having.
stbob, Jan 27 2003
  

       Being a member of Mensa, and seeing those who are in the group, I can tell you that passing a test doesn't mean you're "smarter" than everyone else. Still, it's a worthwhile thing to do if you want to meet and hang out with people that are very accepting and are worth spending time with.
KO, Sep 21 2005
  

       //Maybe us drongo's of IQ under par could buy into a club//   

       Arts degree.
Detly, Sep 21 2005
  

       I actually am qualified to be a member of the International High IQ Society, I havent payed the 1 time membership fee, but I can tell you that I took there tests 3 times and after getting extremely varied results (on one I scored 100 and another 129... you need 126 or higher to be able to join) I managed to be eligable. I think I am going to join, simply because they have a Go club... and finally Ill be able to find people who play. If your going to join either one, IHQS doesnt require an annual membership fee.
Seolyk, Sep 21 2005
  

       Let's just start a new organization that only takes the top 0.2%, based on IQ tests. Since it's 10 times harder to be in the top 0.2% than it is to be in the top 2%, we can charge 10 times more money. Of course, half-bakers get an automatic free membership.
sleeka, Sep 21 2005
  

       Well, well, well. Who would have guessed that so many half bakers are Mensa or Mensa wannabees (you know who you are, don't deny it).   

       I think Mensa is all about meeting persons with whom you can have discussions on the same level (and as I recall, they have three tests. You could be a lingual wonder but a mathematical idiot) I can relate to [beauxeault] in that aspect (exept for the most important organ part; its the hart).   

       [Borallah]'s reaction is maybe exactly why there is such a thing as Mensa. Some people feel less and maybe therefore react defensive to a remark that is to me just simply stating the facts. Being around people who are equally smart, usually prevents such behaviour. And yes! the Halfbakery is a perfect Mensa substitute.   

       But I fear [Seolyk] you have inadvertently drawn the hounds upon this Idea.   

       P.s.: I am not a member of Mensa.
Susan, Sep 21 2005
  

       okay... when I originally posted I meant to point out that IQ tests were often biased towards something, but I have a bad habit of getting too wrapped up in the set up of things and forget what I meant to say. Re-reading my post I noticed the absence of my point... now I point out my actual point, while abusing the word point to make my point.
Seolyk, Sep 22 2005
  

       Doctorremulac3 is proud to say he has not only passed the Mensa test required for membership, he also found and correctly answered the secret bonus question at the end of the test that places him in the top percentile of the top percentile of jeen-yus-siz. The question (paraphrased) is this:   

       "Now that you've passed the test, will you send us some money?"   

       The correct answer:   

       "No"
doctorremulac3, Sep 24 2005
  

       For a while there, I was a regular attendee of a local competitive Scrabble club. Lots of nice folks, friendly competition and so on. For some of them, the term "obsessive compulsive" is almost stamped on their passports. Well behaved and pleasant misfits is how I would characterize them. (Probably applies to me as well, but I like to think I'm more socially competent than some of my fellows.)   

       It came as no surprise to me that the club had started its existance as a Mensa club. The Scrabble games just expanded their allure until it took over the club.   

       When you think about it, regardless of what 'intelligence' means, the one thing that is certain is that it, by definition, places its victims outside the realm of what is considered normal for human beings. Given that society is designed for and by the 'normal', it subsequently stands to reason that highly intelligent people don't fit. I agree with DonnaC. It's nice to have found a place where the status quo is anything but quo.   

       I have ceased going to that club though. I started to feel like an outsider in the outsider's club. Does that make me Mensa-squared or sub-Mensa?
Jefficus, Jan 25 2006
  

       Personally I think there is much more profit in testing for the top half; sort of a Walmart approach to intellectual societies. Surely there are enough self appreciating dolts that are willing to pay a lesser fee to be certified as slightly above average. I can see society shift and congress enact legislation that requires all children to test above average. We must act fast as it may only be possible to have 100% of your population in the top 50% under the administration of George W.
Seven, Jan 26 2006
  

       Quote from pottedstu//In Britain at least, the organization is repeatedly having trouble with ultra-right-wing white-supremacists assuming positions of power// End quote   

       Boy did you get that right, see the link I posted to far right members above. While I met a lot of very nice people in British mensa, I decided not to renew my membership after realising that there were a large number of members of far right political parties and extreme right wing racists, fascists, anti semites and eugenecists amongst the membership.   

       Some of the far right politicians have taken over the British mensa online forum and are using it to promote their quaint 19th century views on race and eugenics with most of the clunkheads who use it being too scared to do anything about it and the rest being sympathetic to the cause.   

       My halfbaked idea on this is that instead of paying your hard earned cash to mensa and other high IQ societies which give right wing crazies a platform to spout hatred from and fund the directors international jollys, you use the money that you would otherwise have spent on the membership fees to take taxis until it runs out, that way you will experience the same 'intellectual' level of discourse on race, anthropology and eugenics from the taxi driver ranting about immigrants as on the mensa forum with the added bonus, that unlike mensa, the taxi driver has also performed a useful service for you by taking you from A to B.
Hanfgeist, Feb 24 2009
  

       [DonnaC], your mention of "raised hackles" inspired me to invent a hackle-lowering cream. I've just now posted it to the halfbakery. You're entitled to 10% of the profits and a year's free supply!
luxlucet, Feb 25 2009
  
      
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