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An Interview with Julien Garrett Arpin on Canada, America, Intelligence, ADHD, and Impressive Figures (Part One)

July 1, 2020

Interviewer: Scott Douglas Jacobsen

Numbering: Issue 23.A, Idea: Outliers & Outsiders (Part Nineteen)

Place of Publication: Langley, British Columbia, Canada

Title: In-Sight: Independent Interview-Based Journal

Web Domain: http://www.in-sightjournal.com

Individual Publication Date: July 1, 2020

Issue Publication Date: September 1, 2020

Name of Publisher: In-Sight Publishing

Frequency: Three Times Per Year

Words: 7,401

ISSN 2369-6885

Abstract

Julien Garrett Arpin is a Member of the World Genius Directory. He discusses: family background; the World Genius Directory; its positives and negatives; the Bible Belt background; Software Development and Network Engineering; differentiates Canadian society from American society; the award; the parenting style; the most honest moment in life; giftedness noted earlier in life; some of the intelligence tests taken; real IQ, authentic IQ, or true IQ; experience with peers and teachers in adolescence; the state of trust in the school faculties; a relevant gap in intelligence levels for sufficient communication with self-selected peers, friend groups, and mentors; the transition to university education; mundane, even trivial aspects of personal life; ADHD; some of the more exciting, novel, exhilarating, etc. parts of life; a chip on the shoulder and the narcissism in men; healthier, balanced sensibilities amongst the gifted; if a gifted person feels zero responsibility to utilize their gifts; a lifelong dream to some lifework or overarching life project; other organizations, groups, and resources; character traits; people internationally; Canadian personalities; some of the most creative people; the most cognitive horsepower in history; the Ashkenazim; the highest ethical standards and actual practices (word and deed) now; ethical duds; freethought; and revelation-based thinking failing or succeeding at this point.

Keywords: ADHD, Ashkenazim, giftedness, IQ, Julien Garrett Arpin, World Genius Directory.

An Interview with Julien Garrett Arpin on Canada, America, Intelligence, ADHD, and Impressive Figures (Part One)[1],[2]*

*Please see the footnotes, bibliography, and citation style listing after the interview.*

1. Scott Douglas Jacobsen: Starting from some of the family backgrounds, what is it, e.g., culture, language, religion or none, geography, work, and educational attainments?

Julien Garrett Arpin: I was born in the northwestern corner of the state of Arkansas to English-speaking parents of humble beginnings in late August of 1995. My lineage is mainly French. Although my area falls within the Bible Belt of the US, my family was never particularly religious. I currently work as a software developer near Toronto, Canada, after finishing a 3-year program in Software Development and Network Engineering near here. It was during this 3-year period that I received the World Genius Directory’s 2017 Genius of the Year Award – America.

2. Jacobsen: For those who do not know, what is the World Genius Directory?

Arpin: It’s the current Who’s Who of the High-IQ World. The World Genius Directory was founded by a Dr Jason Betts, a member of Mensa Australia’s Administrative Committee. The WGD became an official member of the World Intelligence Network in August of 2012. The WGD’s motto is genius pro mundo, which is Latin for ‘genius for the world’It serves as a central point of organization in the high-IQ community as a means of bringing gifted adults together in ways that are good for the world. To help achieve this, the World Genius Directory holds annual elections for the Genius of the Year Awards. The winners are selected to serve as representatives for the gifted community. There are three GOTY Awards given each year; one to a member in the Americas, one to a member in Europe, and one to a member in Asia. Some of the smartest people on the planet are in the World Genius Directory.

3. Jacobsen: What are its positives and negatives?

Arpin: There are more positives than negatives where the WGD is concerned. The members are respectful. Determining which tests are of sufficient quality for consideration by the WGD poses the challenge. Dr Betts handles this well by investigating and cataloguing many IQ tests and IQ societies from across the web. Those resources are available from the WGD website. Like many members of the WGD, Dr Betts designs and offers a selection of surprisingly accurate IQ tests, especially when taken together. The site serves as a reference point for anyone looking for IQ tests. Listed members of the WGD get access to a Facebook page that is always lively. I’ve met amazing people through the WGD. I see some of them on TV, others breaking world records. The WGD also serves as a resource for companies or organizations seeking giftedness or IQ talent. The WGD has faced controversy for its connection to psychic research. The website’s URL is http://psiq.org/. I don’t mind. Research shows that intellectual and intuitive abilities go hand-in-hand. In total, the negatives consist of room to champion pseudoscience while the positives consist of all the social benefits offered to the world and gifted community by such a Directory.

4. Jacobsen: With the Bible Belt background, is a religion in some manner connected to family general views on the world now?

Arpin: My family remains decidedly unreligious but open. The prevailing monotheism such as the religion of the Bible promotes the patriarchal value structure that is integral to the traditional American family, so these factors impact parts of everyone’s lives within the society. Science is the best religion. Politics is a tumultuous one. These things all culminate into something strange in the Bible Belt, where people don’t believe that climate change or COVID-19 are real. These conservative values buoy the Christian faith and become part of it to many. The regular salvos of religious propaganda eventually fostered a tendency for me to recognize signs of cultishness. I support and appreciate the utility of virtue. I understand that our concept of virtuousness has roots in theology. Religion is an effective means of instantiating virtuousness but isn’t necessarily or always the best way. The psychology underlying religious acceptance has changed how I see the human condition and desire for connection and safety. The journey from mythology to science is the positive disintegration of human sociality.

5. Jacobsen: Why pursue Software Development and Network Engineering?

Arpin: I loved video games and computers but knew very little about them. My electrical experience made me interested in electronics. Computer programming sounded enticing. I also had some ideas for software projects that I could only pursue after learning how to code. One is an advanced SMS platform that brings computing power to text-messaging, thereby optimizing customer retention with smarter SMS ad campaigns. The platform also makes it possible for the general public to access the internet over SMS. The platform and business model earned 2nd place in a pitch competition. Beyond learning to write software for those ideas, the networking element put a body to the brain of code. All in all, the choice to pursue software was a decision I never knew I always knew I would make.

6. Jacobsen: What differentiates Canadian society from American society?

Arpin: Canadians are a few points higher in terms of Latitude and IQ. One-third of a standard deviation, according to recent instalments of the WAIS. Canadians outscore Americans so consistently that they use a separate norm here. I live in Toronto, one of the most diverse cities in the world. The change is refreshing. It’s a far cry from my Arkansan hometown where the majority of citizens were born in the Western Hemisphere and had little cultural dissemination. Canadians are a good bit more polite than Americans, and only slightly more polite than southern hospitality. Canadian friendships don’t seem to run as deeply, however. Many Canadians are great acquaintances, but neither enemies nor friends. It stands to reason that this lack of emotional investment in groupthink is the price for Canadian diversity in business.

7. Jacobsen: What does the award mean to you?

Arpin: Direction. It doesn’t make me feel like a genius, but a representative of the gifted community. The plaque reminds me of how I can make an impact with my limited time here. A symbol of the trust others place in me, my dedication to the gifted community. The gifted community gives me that sense of belonging and morale.

8. Jacobsen: What was the parenting style towards you?

Arpin: My parents were laissez-faire in their parenting style. They believed that they could only influence me so much as an individual and that I would, ultimately, be the one making my own decisions in life. And so, the best they could hope to do was to teach me the fundamental principles that they had learned. They were supportive of my accomplishments and encouraged me to become a self-sustained adult, above all else. They taught me to balance compassion and logic and to think for myself. My parents were always honest with me and motivated me to do well in life.

9. Jacobsen: What was the most honest moment in life from them for you?

Arpin: Well, the truth hurts, so their most honest moment was probably a bitter wake-up call. Life is challenging at times, even for our parents. Their most honest moment was the one in which they revealed themselves as flawed, and told me for the first time that they would never be perfect. Their honesty opened my eyes so that I could begin the process of overcoming my childish naivety. The desire for the easy way out, to place complete faith in an archetypal parental figure in hopes of validating the inner experience is the force that leads to blind trust in authority and dogmatism. The ugliest moments are usually the best learning opportunities.

10. Jacobsen: Was giftedness noted earlier in life, or not? How was this nurtured, or not?

Arpin: Certain signs were present from early on. An aunt tells me that when I was extremely young, just a baby in the cradle, she came to see what I looked like for the first time, and made a joke that I looked like Yoda in all my fleshy, newly born appearance. Her words seemed to ring true as everyone in the room began to laugh, but then they all stopped laughing and looked at me in shock when they realized that I was crying because they were all laughing at me. She said that I somehow understood that they were all making fun of me, and I wouldn’t look at her for a while. The fact that she recognized that and acted accordingly was pretty nurturing. My parents are unsure when I learned how to read and write. I had the reading comprehension of a sophomore-level university student in third grade. I won a competition in the library for guessing the number of jelly-beans in an extra-large pickle jar that year. At about the same time, my class was administering timed multiplication tests consisting of 80 to 100 problems that students were to complete in under 2 minutes. To encourage effort, the school promised every student that received perfect scores on all timed tests ice cream at the end of the semester. I was the only student to eat ice cream when the time came. It felt horrible. In fourth grade, I won a district spelling bee against junior high schoolers. My parents also divorced when I was in fourth grade. I moved to a new school district in fifth grade and was placed in a gifted program there in sixth grade. The gifted program was incredible for me. It put me with kids that seemed to understand me, and I forged friendships there that hold to this day.

11. Jacobsen: What have been some of the intelligence tests taken by you? What have been some of the scores, and what were their standard deviations? What would be the relative cognitive rarity for you?

Arpin: I have taken many cognitive ability tests of many different types. I generally refer to my IQ as 154 with 15-point standard deviations, which would put me at a relative rarity of about one person in every 6,284. I scored 154 on the Wonderlic Personnel Test, and 154 on the entrance test to the International Society for Philosophical Enquiry. However, my scores have reached as high as the 170s. I scored 5.06 sigmas above the sample mean (IQ 175) on the MITRE/Educational Testing Services Inductive Reasoning Battery for a High Ability Population, Figure Series, Form 1. I also scored 170 on the test RADIUS by Hans Sjoberg. I scored at the 99.99th percentile of the population on a quiz of social psychological skills from Yale University without a formal background in psychology, which means I have a sense for social patterns. Research indicates that those abilities correlate with general intelligence. I also achieved ceiling scores on multiple intelligence tests from the Psychometrics Centre at Cambridge University. I scored 145+ on IQ tests from various universities including the Hagen Matrices Tests from Hagen University, ICAR 60 from Northwestern University, and the MV2G from SRH University of Applied Science Heidelberg. I have a few more niche scores, as well. On Hawk-Eye, a test of visual processing speed by Dr Micheal Merzenich, PhD, I scored at the ceiling of the test with a visual processing speed below 76 milliseconds. I scored at the 100th percentile on the Verbal Memory Test from Human Benchmark after memorizing around 220 words. I correctly guessed 14 randomly generated coin-flips in a row during a proctored Binary Intuition Test for the group Trishula, a member society of Elysian Fields. The source of randomness for that test was the TRNG or True Random Number Generator at random.org based on atmospheric white noise.

12. Jacobsen: What seems like the real IQ, authentic IQ, or true IQ, for you?

Arpin: 154. Exact IQ scores are somewhat fallacious. Even if I somehow extracted a perfect measure of my IQ to the hundredth of a point, it would fluctuate within seconds. Overall, my IQ scores cluster near the 145-160 range. I consider my IQ to be 154.

13. Jacobsen: How was your experience with peers and teachers in adolescence?

Arpin: My experience with peers and teachers was somewhat challenging during that period of my life. In high school, I often ate lunch alone after selling food to other kids more cheaply than the school was offering it. Some of my old friends, many from the gifted program, would pass by and say hello, so I always knew that I had a few close friends. But I always perceived a disconnect from the general student body. I quit the gifted program in 8th grade because the program instructor had recently transferred from teaching students much younger than I was. Also, my woodshop teacher was punishing me for my time spent in the gifted program instead of his class. My peers had a nasty track record where I was concerned. Once, in high school, I was the only person with an answer to a question during a test review. The teacher was out of the room, and someone openly asked the classroom what the answer to that question was. I thought I could help, so I shared my thoughts, but then nearly every member of the class turned around in their seats and called me an idiot for having that answer! And my answer was right! Fairly perplexing. The next day, the teacher managed to overlook me while taking attendance even though I was there. It didn’t make me feel respected or recognized. It reminded me of my teachers in middle school that would get fed up with my questions. Early into high school, someone from the school football team began belittling me in front of the class. I knew that my peers would have continued the downward spiral and made my life hell if left unchecked. So, I used my knowledge of social patterns to rally a group of students behind me, and we caught the bully between classes. It worked out in my favour. That campaign earned me new friends and peace of mind until graduation. From then on, I had very little faith in school faculty. I would ask questions and receive empty answers. Soon, I stopped participating in some classes entirely. The teachers weren’t sure what to do with me as my standardized test scores were the highest in the courses that I wasn’t attending. At age 14, I discovered an art form that garnered some recognition in my neighbourhood and school: lyricism. I developed skills in lyricism to secure a place in the social hierarchy, and as a means of personal expression. My peers became more accepting of me after I began writing rhymes. I never understood that giftedness was the reason that I felt disconnected from them.

14. Jacobsen: What is the state of trust in the school faculties now?

Arpin: I think that academia is finally recognizing its issues, so I have hope for the not-so-distant future. According to many sources, the intellectual quality of academic institutions began to plummet in 2014. Some never-before-seen wave of cognitive and ethical famine struck American universities in the form of cancel culture and girls-only safe spaces. Suddenly professors could do things they’ve always done and get dogpiled by triggered students. As legislative restrictions increased, the university gates became less selective. So every year, less qualified students enter less enriching learning environments under the halfhearted tutelage of increasingly defensive professors. For many students, the lack of that nourishing environment is reason alone not to waste money on bus tickets to class. It becomes more economic to simply skip class, teach themselves everything they need to know from YouTube and only set foot on campus for midterms and final exams. Academia has withstood heavy blows in light of recent trends, but it will redeem itself soon enough.

15. Jacobsen: What seems like a relevant gap in intelligence levels for sufficient communication with self-selected peers, friend groups, and mentors?

Arpin: It is subjective, but maybe I can represent my thoughts in an objectively meaningful way. It seems that intelligence differences over 1.5 standard deviations in size present challenges to communication. In my personal opinion, a common interest extends this communication range to 3 sigmas, with each additional shared interest extending it by about half as much as the previous iteration. A rough example could go as follows. Imagine an average adult having a conversation with an equally average child. Unless the child is almost an adult, there probably won’t be much fulfiling conversation taking place. Their brains and internal languages are too different. But now imagine that the adult and child have a common interest, like a sport. What if the adult is the kid’s football coach? Suddenly, the two of them can see eye to eye in many ways, speaking in external terms, as men united by a common goal. So, I would answer your question in terms of magnitudes of intelligence differences and personal similarities.

16. Jacobsen: How was the transition to university education?

Arpin: It would be an understatement to say that I was looking forward to the me-time following high school graduation. After finishing 12th grade, I took some time off. I became an electrician for a year. After that, I worked a few odd jobs in charitable organizations until I decided to attend college to become a software developer. Three years had passed since my high school graduation, and I was happy to have taken the opportunity to mature and decide what I wanted in life. I picked software development because I knew nothing about it, and I wanted to pursue something challenging. Met with course material I found stimulating, I began to rediscover my giftedness during college. The college experience was transformational for me. My classmates in college were friendlier to communicate with than in high school. Finishing my exams in a few minutes never made me feel guilty in college! My college professors still didn’t always understand my questions or give good enough answers, but it was much better than high school.

17. Jacobsen: What have been some rather mundane, even trivial aspects of personal life for you

Arpin: The taste of toothpaste has always bothered me, but I grin through it for my coworkers. The orderliness of chores has the air of artistic expression rather than a functional requirement. Having never particularly enjoyed colouring or drawing, I find little satisfaction in arbitrary house-chores. Ceaseless swapping of spatial position is a cheap distraction from what matters. In my opinion, the form should always follow the function. Things like doing the dishes seem like nothing more than time-consuming meditative practices. I can merely purchase plastic dinnerware or purchase food items that don’t require many dishes. Consider the fact that using a drinking glass is obsolete compared to drinking from water fountains. You create cross-contamination every time you drink water that has touched the inside of a glass. More suitable to cut out the middle-man and drink the water as it falls from the faucet. These sorts of daily processes that could be optimized or reduced are my bane. I have ADHD and find the tedium of paperwork insufferable. I need to clear out my email inbox, for that matter.

18. Jacobsen: When was ADHD diagnosed? This is common for boys and men, far more than girls and women.

Arpin: In 12th grade. Retrospectively, it probably would have helped to be diagnosed sooner. Giftedness and ADHD can conceal one another. Oh well, I’m just happy that I found out about it before I graduated from high school.

19. Jacobsen: What have been some of the more exciting, novel, exhilarating, etc. parts of life for you?

Arpin: The intensity of my personal experience leaves me in awe of the beauty of existence. Our universe hangs in perfect harmony. Even a simple juxtaposition of sticks can teach us about balance and identity, and these learnings excite me. I’m a hyperphantasic HSP. I have a vivid mind’s eye, a mental space where I can imagine and experience. This characteristic helps me anticipate and prepare for the road ahead. Impactful music can invoke rapture within me. I actively pursue euphoric moments. I find fringe research that probes the limitations of knowledge to be among the most fulfilling uses of time. Nothing electrifies my being like learning something that forces me to rethink everything I think I know, and the frontiers of science tend to do that. I enjoy researching things like natural science, consciousness, reality, number theory, identity, and everything in between. The mystical experience has highlighted my time on Earth.

20. Jacobsen: Some gifted individuals develop a chip on their shoulder based on particular senses of entitlement in life because of their innate gifts and, therefore, the internalized idea of natural rights, deserved status, and place in society because of the gifts, even unique talents or character qualities, of them. Some may develop a lifelong chip on their shoulder towards well-established academic institutions, to the workaday world, to socialization, to the intimacy of any form, or to building a mature legacy to pass down in progeny or productions. Men are more probable to develop narcissism than women. I observe this in some sub-demographics of the male gifted population. Why is this the case, in both cases of a chip on the shoulder and the narcissism in men?

Arpin: The answer is simple, though perhaps less cheerful than you might hope. The reason this happens as a natural process is because it is the natural order. The gifted have always been persecuted, bullied, burned as witches, or shoved into lockers. Admitting that a superior capability exists without understanding the nature of its advantage will raise the alarms of most people. The less intelligent members of any group that relies on intelligence to wage war and survive will feel threatened by their more intelligent contemporaries. Even after the intelligent one does everything they can to help society, this will be the case. Oh, a clever inventor invented a streetlight to bring light to a dark world? No thanks, it will be called the devil’s candle, and they might meet the same fate as Galileo. Things seemingly changed on the surface level after the gifted community provided technology to the world in the form of computers and internet access. Gifted individuals are exploited for their abilities, treated as expensive assets, just to be deserted, denied, and detested by their brothers. I was seven the first time I saw Bill Gates called the antichrist on a Windows PC. Bill Gates could give away billions of dollars and reconstruct his entire life mission to reduce poverty and death in the third world. He would be blamed for their deaths. He could even warn us of upcoming pandemics, and the world would blame him once it arrived. Time to fetch the pitch-forks. Western culture rewards narcissism with social affluence and romantic opportunities. To be frighteningly smart and nice appears threatening and obsequious. As such, a chip on the shoulder in the gifted male is rarely a result of unfounded narcissism. These responses are war strategies and often necessary. Studies indicate that most school shooters in America are gifted students. Is it narcissism that leads these students to seek revenge? Not necessarily. So why wouldn’t the gifted individual be interested in passing on their good works and strengths to future generations? Well, the reality is your progeny and productions are the capital that will ultimately be criminalized by our selfish and destructive military-industrial complex built to subsidize the farthest reaches of the world to underpin the development of our society. Given this, there should be little question about why many abnormally intelligent individuals develop a chip on their shoulder towards society. Many choose not to contribute out of self-defence. Narcissism often gets misdiagnosed in gifted individuals.

21. Jacobsen: Following from the previous question, how can we help develop healthier, balanced sensibilities amongst the gifted who may be on a negative life trajectory due to internal factors rather than some of the external factors some may observe with Bill Sidis and others?

Arpin: Gifted children develop asynchronously, or at different rates than other children in certain areas. That’s why gifted education programs are so essential for them. Human beings are social animals that require connection to thrive. Without peer groups, gifted individuals often miss out on the reciprocation they need to develop to their fullest potential. Forcing a child to attend a school they find mediocre, threatening, or uncaring isn’t healthy for them. Their developmental trajectories must be accepted and nurtured. Academic institutions have to increase the attention they give gifted education. Lack of knowledge on behalf of educators is no excuse. Ignorance of giftedness from parents is no excuse, either. Parents should always be held accountable for nurturing their children with special needs, and gifted children are considered by many to be a special needs group. All families of gifted children should be familiar with Dabrowski’s Overexcitabilties. For those that may not know, Polish psychologist Kazimierz Dabrowski developed a theory called the Theory of Positive Disintegration that was adopted by the gifted community after its tenets seemed applicable to the group. It posits that only through facing struggles and surviving can we encounter the circumstances that teach us what it means to be better than we are. The five overexcitabilities of the gifted are intellectual, imaginational, emotional, sensual, and psychomotor. Most gifted children have at least one of the OEs, and many have more than one. These overexcitabilities alter or intensify the experiences of intellectually gifted children in ways that are qualitatively different from the norm. Unrecognized, these overexcitabilities can lead to misunderstanding, misbehaviour, and misdiagnosis. We neglect the gifted child every time we downplay their experience or minimize how they feel, and so we must learn to be more accepting of their sensitivities. Teach the gifted child what it means to be gifted. Never leave the child room to wonder why they feel so different from their classmates lest they blame themselves. Show them that capability brings responsibility and what responsibility means. Let them gravitate to their natural domains so that they can identify their strengths and then apply them to other areas. Give them the freedom to express their capabilities and insights, and you will see incredible things. Help them find meaning whenever they ask you for it. Unite them with others like them so that they can connect and grow within a peer group. The world will challenge the gifted child, that much is certain. We must protect the gifted children. We must teach them strength, patience, and compassion. It’s our responsibility to lead by example as we build environments that cultivate these ideals. That means being willing to move the gifted children into a more advanced or appropriate classroom if that’s what it takes to keep them engaged and on track.

22. Jacobsen: What if a gifted person feels zero responsibility to utilize their gifts?

Arpin: Responsibility is a human experience. You cannot survive without being responsible enough to acquire sustenance. With that in mind, what could cause such a hangup where one would choose to stop eating? An unutilized gift isn’t necessarily a wasted chance just like movement for movement’s sake doesn’t necessarily get you anywhere. Maybe such an individual grew to detest their gift after it caused trouble for them. So, they stopped contributing that side of themselves and let it sink into ambivalence. Perhaps they refuse to be exploited in that particular way but are happy to help in others. Or maybe they are depressed, in which case, there are more pertinent problems than their questionable inclinations, like making sure they have a reason to go on living. The question isn’t really about which utilities someone should feel most inclined to use, or when, but what they hope to use them on. Is this a rejection of the self for the sake of others, or of others for the self? Are these choices involuntary reflexes or conscious boycotts? The reflex requires external help in the form of empathy and time to help the gifted individual heal from the trauma that caused them to deny their gifts. Voluntary rejection doesn’t need any external justification or assistance. A human being is free to abstain from that which disturbs it. These individuals will likely seek some other means of chemical fulfilment since their active minds won’t have responsibility-powered reward chemicals in ready supply. Acting responsibly, especially with others to create a sense of group belonging, is hard-wired into the human psyche as a source of happiness.

23. Jacobsen: Have you had a lifelong dream to some lifework or overarching life project?

Arpin: My goal is and has been to facilitate a dynamic through which I can enhance society through the nurturance and enrichment of the gifted population. The WGD has made this possible, but there is still much to be done. We are in a position to provide resources that every family with internet access can use to identify and nurture giftedness in their own homes and communities. These gifted children will be the ones to invent the solutions to the pollution and environmental toxins left behind by the military-industrial complex. I’m grateful to work with organizations such as the World Genius Directory, Elysian Fields, and leaders in the field of giftedness from all around the world to accomplish this.

24. Jacobsen: What other organizations, groups, and resources exist to provide some backing and support, and community, for the gifted young – and the general gifted population?

Arpin: There are many IQ societies designed for various levels of giftedness. Some of the classic names include Mensa, Intertel, the International Society for Philosophical Enquiry, the Triple Nine Society, the Prometheus Society, and the Mega Society. Mensa has special interest groups that focus on gifted kids. For families, other organizations include the National Association for Gifted Children (www.nagc.org), Supporting Emotional Needs of the Gifted (www.sengifted.org), Educations for the Gifted Organization (www.edgo.ca), and Hoagie’s Gifted Education Page (www.hoagiesgifted.org).

25. Jacobsen: What character traits in people impress you?

Arpin: Awareness, honesty, compassion, empathy, originality, ingenuity, intelligence, diligence, courage, patience, wisdom, charisma, and consistency are rather impressive to me. All of the strengths listed in the VIA Strengths Finder. Willingness to question one’s own beliefs is priceless.

26. Jacobsen: What people internationally impress you?

Arpin: Lately, I’ve been thinking about the Nigerians. Despite incredible odds, they continue to strive for excellence and to improve conditions for their nation and people. Nigerians are the best-educated national group in the United States. Of all Nigerians in the US, nearly 20% hold Master’s degrees. A stark contrast to the almost 30% of Nigerians that are currently considered illiterate in their country. Nigeria is still working to improve educational conditions after declaring independence from Great Britain in 1960. It’s been a steady march. Nigeria recently eradicated polio from their country with the help of the Gates Foundation. And that wasn’t long after overcoming the Ebola outbreak. Nigeria now has the largest economy in Africa. The country has a spin on Hollywood called Nollywood, which is the third-largest film industry in the world and pumps out four dozen movies each week. The Nigerian work ethic and sense of culture culminate into something inspirational. Nigerians lead by example and leave a hopeful mark in the world.

27. Jacobsen: What Canadian personalities impress you?

Arpin:  I have a lot of respect for Jordan Peterson from the University of Toronto and Patricia Susan Jackson or P. Susan Jackson from the Daimon Institute for the Highly Gifted. They both raise awareness of giftedness to help the current generation improve circumstances for the upcoming generations. I’d be willing to bet they’re both gifted themselves, too. Peterson is a professor of Psychology that gained a lot of attention for his refusal to adhere to shifting political tides in academia. Peterson’s willingness to discuss the realities of IQ has opened millions of eyes to the situation of intellectual giftedness and intellectual disability. P. Susan Jackson is a psychotherapist and advocate for gifted youth. She founded the Daimon Institute for the Highly Gifted as a clinic for psychotherapy and research of exceptionally gifted children. She also travels and speaks to schools and associations on how to recognize and foster giftedness. These individuals go the distance and fight for what they believe. I’m happy to see them succeed because they also fight for what I believe.

28. Jacobsen: Who are some of the most creative people that you have known?

Arpin: As a software developer working in the labs of the leading banks in Canada, I meet programmers that blow my mind with what they can create. Be it some graphical design, animation for a webpage, an algorithm for a database, or a new puzzle game for your smartphone, they can do it. Software engineers are more creative than people think. They’re creative enough to create ways to keep creating.

29. Jacobsen: Who are the people whom you consider to have the most cognitive horsepower in history?

Arpin: By statistical and historical standards, the Ashkenazi Jews seem to have the most cognitive horsepower of any ethnic group. In terms of singular individuals, mathematical thinkers such as Newton, Einstein, Euler, Gödel, von Neumann, and others come to mind. In terms of nations, I would give the United States and China credit for amassing the most cognitive horsepower to achieve their goals.

30. Jacobsen: Why the Ashkenazim? Is this on verbal intelligence, on general intelligence, or both?

Arpin: I was referring to their above-average general IQ scores, which are strongly influenced by their verbal and mathematical prowess. If the average IQ is 100, the average Ashkenazi IQ is around 112. That means the average Ashkenazi Jew will score higher on intelligence tests than 81% of the population. These findings are well known. Verbal intelligence has a kind of cumulative effect whose advantage shifts with circumstances and grows more refined over time. The Ashkenazi Jews are perhaps the embodiment of intellectual persecution, where much antisemitism was born from jealousy of Jewish success in commerce and politics. With verbal intelligence being their forte, the Ashkenazi Jews are skilled at naming things. It’s almost like some God created them to name all the living things on Earth. But all jokes aside, they seem to be leading the proverbial pack.

31. Jacobsen: Who are the people whom you consider to have the highest ethical standards and actual practices (word and deed) now?

Arpin: The most ethical individuals are those that kindle the flames of critical thought and compassion in others. Those that challenge their own biases and readily admit their mistakes in hopes of becoming wiser are usually the ones with the responsibility to make the hard decisions. The network effect of the modern world gives each idea the potential to become a revolutionary ideology. Given our increasing population size, societal complexity, and technological interconnectivity, the wise teacher is more than a pillar of society but a foundation for the future. I could name mainstream intellectuals, provocateurs, and thinkers known for challenging the status quo. These thinkers are rising in popularity because their ethical value is becoming increasingly self-evident. Reaching a sufficient level of influence will lead ethical individuals to divert focus away from their initial strategies to give back to the community. Examples of this include billionaires-turned-philanthropists like Bill Gates and Jack Ma. Those of the highest ethical substance make sacrifices for the greater good after putting in the work to make sure they have something worth offering.

32. Jacobsen: Who are ethical duds – all show, no substance?

Arpin: Emotionally Volatile, Ideological Leftists. These people claim to value individuality and difference of opinion, yet would stone us to death at the mention of mere scientific facts. That is a paramount ethical failure. These false prophets belong in mental hospitals. Emotionally Volatile, Ideological Leftists are so incompetent that they can’t even bring themselves to complete a Google search as a means of checking whether the next statue on the anti-racism disassembly line is of an abolitionist or a civil rights activist. This left is hysterical, bloodthirsty, illogical, and hell-bent on revenge for the horrors of life. The truth is that I’m politically left-leaning, yet I find myself inching ever so slightly to the right with every newsreel of a violent mob fighting the fool’s fight. I like to say that I left the left for the right only to right the right, for the left. We have to fix these problems ourselves. Sadly, some are too far gone to open their ears to the fact that there are truths on all sides. But alas, patience is golden.

33. Jacobsen: When you reflect on the types of philosophies out there, whether supernaturalistic and revelation-based philosophies found in various religions and theologies, naturalistic in the freethinker and natural philosophies or some variations of spirituality-by-practice without formalization in a religious codification or operation within the considerations of modern empiricism?

Arpin: That depends on what problems you hope to solve. The utility of a school of thought exists in its ability to solve distinct problems. The epistemology of freethought is the inherent mechanism by which human beings can adapt to change by overcoming and learning from challenges. But there is a price. Freethought encourages individualism, and being a lone individual in any arena can pose a risk. As such, the legacy of freethought is the expansion of science through trial-and-error, and then social forces propagate the results throughout the larger collective. This process only works when the virtues and proponents of freethought are encouraged and protected on a societal level. Inversely, spirituality-by-practice serves an effective means of training a population to work in unison. The process is Pavlovian. An army united under morale strikes with many times the force. In many senses, it doesn’t matter what lies they believe so long as they strike hard enough. Synchronized movement enhances group cooperation, and so many religions and corporations require their practitioners to engage in coordinated rituals as a team-building exercise. Revelation-based philosophies are the result of spirituality-by-practice attempting to grapple with change without losing sight of some leading tenet of morale. Freethought is the most objective and appropriate philosophical framework for current circumstances.

34. Jacobsen: What else follows from freethought?

Arpin: Logical models of the all. Freethought is an infinitely expanding process where each answer brings questions. Where does it end? At the boundary of perception and logic. When the understanding of reality becomes so nuanced that there is nothing new to ask, then dogma and revelation-based thinking will rise to preserve the status quo until more questions present themselves. The continuous output of freethought is the sciences, but stagnating sciences rot and turn to dogmatic beliefs.

35. Jacobsen: Is revelation-based thinking failing or succeeding at this point?

Arpin: Succeeding. It’s becoming more common in the public forum as scientific knowledge becomes a beacon of class privilege, turning the people against science. Supernaturalistic beliefs are cheap, and the only thing many fanatics can afford. So, as time progresses, revelation-based thinking breeds revolutionaries that seek to dismantle the boards of freethinking rationalism on their spurious eureka moments. I’ll call them revelationaries. The world is growing narcissistic, more emotional, and less intelligent due in large part to social forces like social media. These echo chambers feed confirmation bias in ways we’ve never seen. Combine this with an age of misinformation where you can find a supporting study for any claim. What you get are the roiling makings of an ideological Crock-Pot. Now, empowered by false narratives and lazy research, household revelationaries are losing patience with the rationalist narrative. At worst, they consider lengthy justifications and proofs as time-consuming trivialities or outright attacks against them. Such accusations aren’t the product of logic and reason, those fair instruments of discourse and debate, but dogma and hysteria. At best, they develop new pseudosciences that they hope to imbue with some sense of economic value that they can profit off. Those without the psychospiritual resources to stand steadfast against the torrent of falsehoods will fall to the confusing storm. There will always be the people that turn to their irrational revelations for the answers. Flat-Earthers. Climate change deniers. IQ deniers. All symptoms of a grander process as integral to human nature as cognitive dissonance. So, yes, revelation-based thinking is on the upsurge in the form of science denialism.

Appendix I: Footnotes

[1] Member, World Genius Directory.

[2] Individual Publication Date: July 1, 2020: http://www.in-sightjournal.com/arpin-one; Full Issue Publication Date: September 1, 2020: https://in-sightjournal.com/insight-issues/.

*High range testing (HRT) should be taken with honest skepticism grounded in the limited empirical development of the field at present, even in spite of honest and sincere efforts. If a higher general intelligence score, then the greater the variability in, and margin of error in, the general intelligence scores because of the greater rarity in the population.

Appendix II: Citation Style Listing

American Medical Association (AMA): Jacobsen S. An Interview with Julien Garrett Arpin on Canada, America, Intelligence, ADHD, and Impressive Figures (Part One) [Online].July 2020; 23(A). Available from: http://www.in-sightjournal.com/arpin-one.

American Psychological Association (APA, 6th Edition, 2010): Jacobsen, S.D. (2020, July 1). An Interview with Julien Garrett Arpin on Canada, America, Intelligence, ADHD, and Impressive Figures (Part One)Retrieved from http://www.in-sightjournal.com/arpin-one.

Brazilian National Standards (ABNT): JACOBSEN, S. An Interview with Julien Garrett Arpin on Canada, America, Intelligence, ADHD, and Impressive Figures (Part One). In-Sight: Independent Interview-Based Journal. 23.A, July. 2020. <http://www.in-sightjournal.com/arpin-one>.

Chicago/Turabian, Author-Date (16th Edition): Jacobsen, Scott. 2020. “An Interview with Julien Garrett Arpin on Canada, America, Intelligence, ADHD, and Impressive Figures (Part One).” In-Sight: Independent Interview-Based Journal. 23.A. http://www.in-sightjournal.com/arpin-one.

Chicago/Turabian, Humanities (16th Edition): Jacobsen, Scott “An Interview with Julien Garrett Arpin on Canada, America, Intelligence, ADHD, and Impressive Figures (Part One).” In-Sight: Independent Interview-Based Journal. 23.A (July 2020). http://www.in-sightjournal.com/arpin-one.

Harvard: Jacobsen, S. 2020, ‘An Interview with Julien Garrett Arpin on Canada, America, Intelligence, ADHD, and Impressive Figures (Part One)In-Sight: Independent Interview-Based Journal, vol. 23.A. Available from: <http://www.in-sightjournal.com/arpin-one>.

Harvard, Australian: Jacobsen, S. 2020, ‘An Interview with Julien Garrett Arpin on Canada, America, Intelligence, ADHD, and Impressive Figures (Part One)In-Sight: Independent Interview-Based Journal, vol. 23.A., http://www.in-sightjournal.com/arpin-one.

Modern Language Association (MLA, 7th Edition, 2009): Scott D. Jacobsen. “An Interview with Julien Garrett Arpin on Canada, America, Intelligence, ADHD, and Impressive Figures (Part One).” In-Sight: Independent Interview-Based Journal 23.A (2020):July. 2020. Web. <http://www.in-sightjournal.com/arpin-one>.

Vancouver/ICMJE: Jacobsen S. An Interview with Julien Garrett Arpin on Canada, America, Intelligence, ADHD, and Impressive Figures (Part One) [Internet]. (2020, June 23(A). Available from: http://www.in-sightjournal.com/arpin-one.

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