Gee, Thanks! China-Based Outsourcer Lowers Minimum IQ Requirement for Americans
A China-based outsourcing company called Bleum requires
that all job applicants for computer science positions
have a minimum IQ of 140. Bleum recently announced that
it will hire Americans who are
willing to move to China—but,
according to Bleum, it couldn`t find enough Americans
that met its minimum requirements for intelligence.
Bleum decided to lower its minimum IQ to 125 to
compensate for the weak talent pool in the United
"An IQ test is the first screen for any US or Chinese
“The lower IQ threshold for new US graduates reflects
the fact that the pool of US talent available to the
company is smaller than the pool of Chinese talent,
Chinese outsourcer seeks U.S. workers with IQ of 125 and
by Patrick Thibodeau,
July 7, 2010
So the Chinese are going to give Americans a break on IQ
because of the smaller talent pool in the U.S. At least
they understand our standards of Political Correctness
well enough to know that it would be politically
incorrect to say that Americans, on average, are not as
smart as the Chinese.
Bleum claims that it normally only hires geniuses that
would represent the
of the American population. (Chinese IQ is supposed to
be higher than American on average, but the tails of
their IQ Bell Curve may be smaller—i.e. fewer geniuses.
I haven`t been able to find good numbers on how it nets
[VDARE.com note: Check out
Global Bell Curve,
IQ And The Wealth Of Nations
for actual numbers.]
In case you have never heard of Bleum, click this link
to find out more:
(Note: it now says it accepts people with IQs above
I`m not an expert on IQ like Steve Sailer. But thanks
his ample reporting on VDARE.COM, I am probably in the
99th percentile of the population when it comes to
understanding what IQ tests mean!
So let me share a few thoughts on the issue.
The Chinese are obviously using the IQ scale developed
by Lewis Terman in 1916 that rates these IQs as follows:
Over 140 –
Genius or near genius
120 – 140 – Very superior intelligence
In order to get a grip on what kind of people numbers we
are talking about, China has a population of
approximately 1.3 billion. Therefore, the 99.6
percentile would be about 5 million people (assuming a
distribution similar to whites—it could be higher).
To put this in perspective: according to the
the United States has about 1.3 million workers in
computer software engineering and programming — which
means the Chinese could in theory replace the entire
U.S. computer profession almost four times over
if IQ was used to screen job applicants.
Fortunately for the U.S., not all Chinese geniuses are
computer science graduates — some of them are probably
water buffalos to farm rice.
But this threat to the U.S. is very real, especially
India probably has an even larger population.
IQ is a crude way to predict performance in computer
science, or most other professions, because there are
many factors that go into a successful career besides
On the other hand, the
has proven that
IQ has a direct correlation with performance.
Without question, there must be a minimum IQ that
computer programmers need in order to function in a
modern workplace environment. But judging by the wide
range of IQs for CS professionals (see this table:
Modern IQ ranges for various occupations,
(Based on a University of Wisconsin study[PDF])programmers
have a wide variability of IQ scores that range from
I have personally known computer programmers that would
probably test fairly low on many IQ tests, because many
of their skills such as reading, writing or math are
substandard. But they were whiz kids once they are
behind the keyboard — hence the term
(Contrary to popular opinion computer programming
usually requires very little math). As Steve Sailer
explained, alchemists can`t change lead into gold, but
lead is useful anyway.
Could it be that people can be too smart for computer
jobs? I don`t have enough evidence to judge that
scientifically, but the case of Bleum suggests an answer
of “yes” to
that question—because although it only hires above 140
IQ, it isn`t exactly the envy of the world. It has used
the 140 IQ screen for at least five years, so there`s
been time to prove this approach. It hasn`t translated
into greatness yet. I`ll bet most readers have never
heard of Bleum.
Of course, Bleum`s problem could be that the only
geniuses in the company are the programmers—not the
Basing employment on IQ isn`t very fashionable in the
United States. It tends to be considered
because the large average IQ between different races [America
and the Left Half of the Bell Curve]
and is arguably illegal after the disastrous
Bleum doesn`t disclose how it chose an IQ minimum of 125
for Americans. But I suppose that, hypothetically, it
could be motivated by a preference for
racial groups like whites or Asians
who consistently score higher in IQ tests. Or it might
be that IQ tests are a valuable tool that the Chinese
get to use and we don`t
because there are no easily-offended minorities
in China—further proof that
diversity is not strength.
There are many questions that could be raised by Bleum`s
IQ tests. So let me tackle an obvious one:
Why would a
genius work for Bleum?
Dr. Norm Matloff,
the 90th percentile of wages earned by American workers
in the computer field is about $109,170. [On
the Need for Reform of the H-1B Nonimmigrant Work Visa
in Computer-Related Occupations,
Michigan Journal Of Law Reform. Fall
2003]Coincidentally, the 90th percentile mentioned by
Matloff correlates roughly to the 125 IQ that Bleum set
for American workers. The 90th percentile isn`t genius
level, so we would expect people with higher IQs to make
Considering that geniuses should easily be able to make
six figure salaries in the U.S, which job would a genius
be likely to choose — a job in the U.S. or one in China
working for Bleum?
In my opinion the answer is obvious to anyone who reads
this quote from
the American-born founder and CEO of Bleum:
"In fact, according to Bleum`s Mr. Rongley, getting the
best in China won`t be as economical as people expect it
to be. `Most companies hire the cheapest resource. I
hire the best resource. If you want a company of
superstars, you can`t pay them $3 (per hour) for a
project manager or 50 cents for an engineer. Yes,
sometimes they manage to get code developed for crazy
low prices. They have interns working on their
Outsourcing to China,
by Jacqueline Zhang, Sourcingmag.com, August 2, 2005]
Fifty cents an hour?
And, while Bleum may pay more, it doesn`t seem very
eager to advertise its salaries either. There are lots
of job openings listed on the
career page at Bleum,
but salaries are conspicuously missing.
One final note: According to
and numerous other webzine articles there were five
Americans who got jobs at Bleum. Almost all mention of
the five American geniuses stopped about July 8th.
Since then I have spent hours searching the internet to
find out find out who the lucky Americans are that are
for the honor or working at Bleum.
It would seem to reason that there would be at least a
little fanfare about their identities. But so far I
haven`t found a single picture or any other clue as to
who they are.
Why is there such great silence about the lucky winners?
Rob Sanchez (email
him) is a Senior Writing Fellow for
Californians for Population
and author of the "Job
Destruction Newsletter" (sign up
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Rob Sanchez, click