Late bloomers … possess qualities that can only be acquired through time and experience. They tend to be more curious, compassionate, resilient and wise than younger people of equal talent. (more) We don’t treat people as equals in our society; some are seen as more valuable than others. And a key question is: how fast do we learn who is more valuable? The faster that we learn, the faster we can successfully sort people into the more versus less valuable, and the more strongly success and respect will correlate with merit. But the longer it takes to learn who is more valuable, the less we can infer about who is good from who has succeeded so far.
Yes. And you suggest that an elitist society incentivizes people wishing the early-bloomer story to be true. And I was wondering if you grant my alternative explanation and would agree that the elitist explanation is minor in comparison to the performance explanation (that young people actually perform better say in athletics and finance).
Not much anyway.
There's a reality and then there is what people say. They tend to correlate, but not exactly; people may say what they wish were true.
Sorry, I didn't made myself clear. My model was A)Young people empirically perform best -> Society believes this.You seem to suggest B) A society is elitist -> It believes that young people perform best. Did I read you incorrectly? And if not, how would you weigh A) vs. B)? My gut feeling is that B) is very weak compared to A).
Very thought-provoking piece!Perhaps these can also be differentiated by their perceptions of noise in quality estimates (which would impact learning speed). Populists think that the noise in observed value starts high and becomes smaller over time. On the positive side, that implies there will be late bloomers. On the negative side, that implies they believe there are also people who are "overpaid" or will flame out. Elitists think that the noise in observed value starts relatively low and becomes smaller over time. Thus there are fewer late bloomers and fewer Icaruses. Populists see a lot of dislocations whereas elitists (/meritocrats) do not.
So, indeed, the other way around. Women who believe in a more populist theory (late signals of quality) will be more likely to date older men. You aren't suggesting that dating an older man casually increases your degree of populism.
Huh? Wanting believe has almost no causal impact on how many later bloomers there are. Instead, these worlds differ for other reasons, and then local beliefs adapt to those differences.
"That is, in the world that populists want to believe in, there are more late bloomers."How strong do you think is that effect? My gut reaction is that it's mostly driven by other things, e.g. young/older people actually perform better in the areas you mentioned (sports, politics, etc.).
The more everyone is focused on early signs of success, the more pressure there is to get more education, as that's one of the few early signs of success that one can reliably generate.
So if we are more elitist, why are people staying in school longer and longer? Are we getting more populist?
BTW I failed first grade twice, after that they moved me on to second grade which I failed. But I graduated college, got my best grades in college. I was also very bad at sports at 6yo to 13yo but got good enough to play high school basketball, track and soccer and my High School was basketball crazy with about 100 guys trying out for the 12 spots on the team one year (I think the school had about 1,200 students). At 29yo I was making a little over minimum wage working full time not in school, this year I almost hit the top 1%. I'm a late bloomer. I don't know if there was anything I was top 20% at when I started it, except that I'm tall.
An interesting case is Japan where they study very hard in high school and their success there is very important for the rest of their career, or at least it was that way a couple decades ago. That selects for conformists, as those who do best in HS are generally known as 'nerds' because they are more interested in impressing adults than peers, as why else would they want to get an A on some subject they can't really appreciate but prioritize based on the authority figures. Cool kids don't care what obtuse parents think (eg, "plastics" in The Graduate highlighted how parents just didn't get it). And indeed Japan, while very educated and disciplined, is not known for their innovation.
Harvard et al on the resume is nice, but it just says that you were an elite 17 y-o, which is a signal, but a noisy one.
The longer you think you have to wait to see male quality, the longer you will be willing to wait.
I don’t follow why women who date older men should be more populist (believe in late bloomers). I see why believing in late bloomers would make women more inclined to date older men but why would dating older men cause one to believe more in late bloomers?
Or do you merely mean that those women who do date older men are going to have (other things being controlled for) a greater degree of belief in late bloomers?
Re favoring ages, the median age or the median productivity age.
Overall I’d say our culture leans elitist, though I admit this is hard to tell.
What's the zero point?