By now most of us accept that people are dealt different hands by nature. However, much of the commentariat speaks as if on some level it all balances out. Strengths in one area matched by weaknesses in another. Or a the very least the deck is shuffled so that the beautiful are no more likely to be brilliant. The naturally happy are no more likely to strike it rich.

Sadly nature is more cruel than that. All men are made of crooked timber but some timbers are more crooked than others.

Eric Barker has the goods:

[Criminals] are more likely to be ugly:

Being very attractive reduces a young adult’s propensity for criminal activity and being unattractive increases it. Being very attractive is also positively associated with wages and with adult vocabulary test scores, which implies that beauty may have an impact on human capital formation. The results suggest that a labor market penalty provides a direct incentive for unattractive individuals toward criminal activity. The level of beauty in high school is associated with criminal propensity seven to eight years later, which seems to be due to the impact of beauty in high school on human capital formation, although this avenue seems to be effective for females only.

HT: Sullivan

About these ads