Study hard so you can enjoy the fruits of your hard work later. Uhm, yes, right… Okay, I get it; education is very, VERY important. There is no point in arguing about that. However, being smart and being intelligent are two quite different things. You can be both, neither, or somewhere in between. What is more interesting (or disturbing) is to spot people with rather little smarts working in intelligence-demanding jobs. And believe it or not, it happens pretty often.
So when someone on Reddit asked, “What career seems to attract an unlikely amount of idiots, despite being intellectually demanding?” People in the community had a lot to say. Other than just mentioning the occupations, people had insightful discussions in the comments that are worth giving a read. Take a look.
More Info: Reddit
I wouldn’t say politicians are dumb. It’s just that most people judge them by the Disney version of what their job actually is. The very short version is that the game is to get as many of your side elected and of course get yourself re-elected. That’s the whole job. If you can do it by doing good stuff, you do that. But truth be told, that’s not a smart way to do it. Most people don’t care enough to notice whether anything good happens, or if they do notice, it doesn’t translate to votes. What does, it doing what rich donors want, preventing the other side from doing anything to help people, and being a big personality who can weird a zinger on social media.
After I graduated from college, I worked in politics briefly. I had watched a lot of West Wing and thought politicians were as smart, well-read, and educated as an Aaron Sorkin character. It turns out, most are the types from your high school who were popular class clowns, but now they’re adults. Cheerful, smiling, agreeable, and everything has to be a big party or joke. Not a single time did any of them ever talk about a political issue. I’m pretty sure they hadn’t read a book since college (if then). It’s all about whipping out the charm at fundraisers. Not a bright crowd.
#2 Content Creators
[The heck] you have to be intelligent for in order to be a content creator, quite literally some of the dumbest people on the planet are content creators. Intelligent ones are in the minority.
They don’t have to be intelligent. It’s just that those are the ones worth following. Creating content requires nothing, but creating good/entertaining/meaningful/unique content? Oh boi. It happened to me multiple times that I had no more interest in a given content theme (be it game/movie related or compilations or comics, whatever art form), but I still tune in on the creator’s more personal uploads, because I’m interested in their opinion and thoughts about whatever matter. However technically everyone is a content creator who uploads to TikTok or any other media, and I guess you know where this is going. The majority shouldn’t have recorded anything ever.
#3 Restaurant Owners
Restaurant owners… Somehow the most I’ve met are either or a d**k who does not like to so what they do, or someone who does not know [what the heck] he is doing.
The problem is that so many people with absolutely zero qualification to open a restaurant somehow want to do exactly that.
“We quit our jobs and remortgaged our house to follow our dream of owning a restaurant, despite neither of us having any experience in any related industry or any understanding of business or finance. We bought this place in a remote area and remodeled everything at a cost of $1m and have done nothing to promote it and for some reason the customers just aren’t coming. Now we haven’t paid any bills or taxes for the last eight months and we’ve maxed out all our credit cards, Chef Ramsay, please save our restaurant and our family!”
—Obligatory overloaded menu scene—
“So what kind of food do you serve?”
“Oh we serve Mexican, Italian, Eskimo, American, Cuban, and bagel bites! Look at our 45 item menu!”
—Obligatory ‘we don’t label/date anything or store food as per FDA guidelines/common sense’—
“Jesus Christ, what the hell died in here?! WHAT IS THIS?”
“Well that’s either last months meatloaf or one of our sponges… Think we can still serve that?”
#4 Police Officers
I wish this was just a joke, but last week we went to a local event and the sheriff’s department was there letting kids check out their tactical black military looking truck. My son loves trucks and tractors so I bring him over to check it out
One of the officers is there at the back of the truck and I see him holding a “we’re hiring” sign. I then watched him for five minutes as he struggled to figure out how to attach the sign to the door of the truck. He kept trying to wedge it in little gaps and I’m just thinking that he has obviously never heard of tape. Then he gave up and just laid it down where nobody could see it.
Seriously. I’ve worked in data entry entering traffic infractions into the system. Let me tell you, not only they have no idea how to write (sometimes worse than a doctor), they also have problems adding numbers. Sometimes instead of a 115$ fine, they add up a 1 so it is 1115$ (it is corrected eventually tho).
Journalists (I can say this because I am a working journalist lol) lots of biases and personal agendas pushed on people when it was invented to literally be the opposite. Also, FULL of narcissists
Also journalist here. Most journalists are way too cocky, even if they are stupid they believe they know everything. Also, a lot of them lack actual empathy on obvious sensitive matters and will do anything for views and clicks. I am trying to leave to be honest because it’s just not worth it, even the pay is low unless you are really famous or something.
#6 Car Salespeople
The car business. Most are college/high school drop outs that handle your personal private information, credit, contracts. I worked in the car business for 6 years across 3 states and I’ve never met a more consistently low standard of employee. It’s all about getting as much money as you can out of every single customer by any means necessary.
I was a soldier for 20 years, worked retail and security after that along with picking up degrees in tech fields, the only job I found I was terrible at was as a car salesperson because I wasn’t “pushy enough”!
#7 Industrial Workers
Surprisingly, industrial workers; electricians, carpenters, plumbers, mechanics, etc. You need a *high* amount of skill with math, common sense, working with your hands, the list goes on with the requirements you need to just *begin* in these jobs, yet the amount of goddamn idiots I saw in these positions is hysterical. The amount of OSHA violations is amazing, especially the ones most people seem to think are ‘too minor’ to be reported.
Plumber here, you need half a brain to pass trade school. It’s not hard but requires a lot of work. Not everyone who works in the trades ends up getting a ticket.
My dad used to be a maintenance guy for a property management company. His co-worker, who we’ll call “Jimmy”. The boss would ask my dad to a job, while my dad was busy doing another job, he’d ask “Why can’t Jimmy do it?”. His boss would say “If I wanted ‘Jimmy’ job, I’d get Jimmy to do it.”
Jimmy was once tasked to align the stairway doors on each floor of a 17-story high rise, instead of tightening the screws on the hinges; he used a mini sledge hammer to bash the doors in, so they would close “properly”.
#8 Military Personnel
May get heat for this one, but – what can I say? I speak from real-life experiences. Years of it.
Folks in the military.
For the members of the public who have never served, many view soldiers as these great, brave defenders of freedom. In reality, there is an unlikely amount who could not spell “brave,” “defenders,” “freedom” or even “of.”
There’s a group referred to “ASVAB waivers.” The ASVAB is a test people take before joining the military. The most basic of an IQ test. The max score is 99. A score of 31 (!!!) is all it takes to join the Army. But, there are waivers for people who can’t even get 31. And people get those – especially during wartime.
Yet those same people are able to follow war strategies and complete missions. Unreal if you think about it.
#9 School Administrators
My significant other is a choir teacher and this year her music department received a lot of funding from a donation. The music department made a list of things they NEED. The school admins completely ignored their list and bought a ton of new music stands and smart boards for the band and choir rooms. Now they still don’t have the equipment they need, but they have so many music stands they had to put all of their old stands in storage.
I’m 100% sure this is just incompetence or arrogance. I imagine the admins think they know better than a couple of teachers.
#10 Information Security
This will likely get buried, but information security. There are so many articles about how we have a shortage of workers in the field that places are churning out people with certificates in cybersecurity who know nothing about how computers, networks, or the internet works. They can operate tools and respond to rote situations though.
Nurses. I’ve had few AMAZING nurses but most of the time, all the biggest bullies went to study nursing and now there’s an actual problem of workplace bullying in that field.
When I went into labor the first nurse I had to deal with was awful. She didn’t believe my water broke, as I have a puddle of fluid flowing out of me. Then when she went to check to see how dilated I was she couldn’t locate my cervix and got super mad at me for it. Uhhh…it’s not like I’m playing a prank and hid my cervix from you.
#12 Game Developers
Game Development. In a college that offers it and I’ve seen the most intelligent idiots around going for that major. And I’m one of the biggest intelligent idiots around.
My buddy went into programing and they had a get-together for all the computer science departments. He said there were the pretty boring programmers, the nerdy engineers and then the Game Development majors were the biggest bunch of mouth breathers and waste products. They were Naruto running around and he caught one guy eating mayo right out of a bottle.
I texted him about this and he said “oh yea, a few of them were pretty ripe too, in need of a shower badly, and saw themselves as the ‘elite’ group.”
#13 Emergency Medical Technicians
EMTs. It’s not all that intellectually demanding but you’d be surprised at the amount of idiots in this field. Not meaning to offend anyone. There are exceptions.
People become EMTs because it’s easy and so it attracts a lot of Rescue Randys who just want to be a hero… there’s nothing heroic about backboards and driving… trust me I did it.
Unfortunately, there’s a lot of immature paramedics as well and a high number of wannabe cops/firefighters who end up in EMS…
I’ve spent my entire career in EMS at literally every level and there are a lot of great medics and EMTs but the community as a whole has some serious growing up to do.
You forget the other group of people who become EMT’s the daredevil crowd, who are more invested in racing through traffic to get to a patient/get a patient to hospital than they are actually interacting with a patient.
#14 Software Development
Eh, I dunno about idiots. We are, however, lazy [rumps] as a general rule, and that laziness can certainly make us look stupid.
See also: The amount of us who automate tedious things so we can goof off on Reddit for half the day while still getting routine stuff done.
Unless you’re referring to the guy on every team who shows up, writes some spaghetti code without any reviews, gets promoted because the uplines just care that it works and not about how maintainable or documented it is, then peaces out to the next job and leaves the rest of the team to stare at the undocumented and horribly written code in bewilderment. As someone who got the [female canine] work of cleaning up and documenting code left behind by that guy in my first job out of college, those guys can go [duck] themselves.
One hundred percent lawyers. I’ve probably met more dumb lawyers than smart ones. Tons of lawyers have a Rain Man level of savant knowledge about one narrow area and cannot wipe their own a*s with instructions. But more common are lawyers who are just barely competent enough to keep their license, shuffling along doing the bare minimum, totally useless in court, never respond to emails, etc.
We are a book smart but common sense and social skills dumb profession. If I ever manage to get my side gigs more successful I’d happily leave. I stay in this career because I make a healthy salary with employer retirement contributions for basically high-level proofreading and improv skills.
#16 Business Managers
I took some business classes when I was in engineering school. Figured it would come in handy. Boy was that an eye opener! You’d be working alongside people who couldn’t understand the basic algebraic equations that tell you profit/loss or cost of goods sold and so forth. Math just wasn’t their thing.
And you’d want to take them by the shoulders and shake them awake, like, hey dumba%s, money is a numbers game. If you want to be good with money you’d better get good with numbers.
No clue. Can’t understand a simple equation and they’re gonna hope excel will bail them out when the time comes. But they suck at excel too. Step one, meetings, step three get rich.
Just amazingly dumb people.
#17 Special Education Support Staff
I’ve been working in special education for about a decade now and I’ve found that it, unfortunately, attracts a lot of complete idiots. Schools are usually so desperate for support staff they’ll pretty much hire anyway.
S**t, I think the first district I worked for lucked out with me [as being at the very least average, and based on my track record over the last decade], but the head of special education reached out to me **after finding my job post on craigslist.**
#18 Managers Who Are “Yes-People”
Any management position occupied by a yes-man.
Do you see a lot of no-men in management? Saying yes to your boss is a prerequisite for the position.
In a healthy organization, yes. I manage a team of software developers. My boss is completely open to being challenged, having discussions and debates. We are far more like colleagues than a traditional structure. I know this is an exception, but still, it does exist.
#19 Medical Doctors
Doctors. They are incredibly difficult to deal with in ANY matter outside of medicine.
Ha, I work at a university and I think it’s most folks with really long educational careers. “Yes, you’re an astrophysicist. No, I don’t trust you with that ladder.”
#20 Any Career, If You’re Good At Adapting
Image source: Mean_Connection7813
All of them. People are dangerously adaptive and even the dumbest with a will to live will manage somehow.
I think it’s because to excel in this world it’s not about being excellent it’s about doing what your told.
Also just being buddy-buddy with the higher-ups. I feel like a bigger reason I hate two-faced charismatic people isn’t because they’re two-faced; it’s because having excellent social skills with no/limited moral compass means the world is their playground. You don’t have to be smart or hard-working when you can charm anyone around you.