Sadiq Khan Should Accept Donald Trump’s IQ Test Challenge

I don’t really know much about political life, but much of it seems to be spent talking and positioning. Insulting and grandstanding. Rarely, if ever, do people get called out on any of it.

So, we should consider it a delicious treat that when London Mayor Sadiq Khan said Trump’s views on Islam were ignorant, Trump challenged him to an IQ test.

You can quibble some. IQ tests don’t have Islamic questions on them. But that’s beside the point. As the insultee, Trump has issued a challenge, and it is incumbent on Sadiq Khan to either offer an apology or accept the challenge.

I suggest the latter is Khan’s best option with the scores of both test-takers being disclosed to the public thereafter. He has everything to gain and nothing to lose from facing off against the the President of the United States even if the test is one of Trump’s own choosing. Especially then in fact. Trump’s faith in his own intelligence has been one of his few consistencies. A public loss would be devastating to him.

Of course, Khan wouldn’t himself want to lose either, but even if he did, I don’t think he’d suffer much from it provided he put in an adequate above-average showing. To be measured against the leader of another nation is already a compliment.

The biggest beneficiaries would of course be the American public. I would genuinely be interested in whether we are dealing with an 11-dimensional-chess brain or a Dunning-Kruger-effect brain. Personally, I’d rather have the results of Trump’s IQ test than any number of his tax returns.

Step up, Mr. Khan. We need you.


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Vikram Bath is the pseudonym of a former business school professor living in the United States with his wife, daughter, and dog. (Dog pictured.) His current interests include amateur philosophy of science, business, and economics. Tweet at him at @vikrambath1. ...more →

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19 thoughts on “Sadiq Khan Should Accept Donald Trump’s IQ Test Challenge

  1. If he took the challenge, Trump would back down, equivocate about why, and tweet something new and wonderfully offensive to distract the media from his cowardice.

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    • “I know the tests. I took all the best tests. I did a great job. Just tremendous. Believe me. But all those tests – they’re stacked like THIS, most people’s tests are small, mine are THIS HIGH – they’re under audit. Can’t show you. That’s what happens. So big, tho. Bigly. Not sad. Believe me.”

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    • I don’t know about that. I’m not entirely convinced that he’s a pure con man with a realistic view of the world. He may very well believe he has one of the highest IQs on Earth. Seeing how responded would actually be pretty interesting. Does he know he’s a bit of a dunce or does he believe his own PR?

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      • I agree. It would be a display of childish power concepts, but that’s the level Trump operates in. He would never accept that challenge because merely agreeing to it would mean (to Trump) that the other kid already won: he compelled Trump to take the test.

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  2. Traditionally, the one who is challenged gets the choice of weapons.

    Nonetheless, Mr Khan should totally do this.

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  3. This would be pretty great. The question is, how to avoid cheating. My read is, there is no way in hell Trump would step up and take a fair, objectively graded test. It’s just, the risks.

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  4. Trump, being a very slight bit narcissistic, has probably taken quite a lot of IQ tests, which is why he issued the challenge. My guess is that he’s 150 or higher, given that he ran circles around some of the roughest sharks in one of the world’s toughest high-stakes real-estate markets. He’s also the kind of person that would likely have studied all the tricks and techniques for scoring well.

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  5. As delightfully delicious as this idea is… how does it differ from all the other “tests” we anticipated Trump would fail, watched him fail, and watched as it matter not a bit.

    If Trump wins, Trumpers will tout how much smarter he is than the dirty A-Rab.
    If Trump loses, Trumpers will tout how much smarter he is than the dirty A-Rab.

    Isn’t it obvious that support for Trump is predicated on a denial of reality?

    Oh… wait… shit… Hi Miners! You guys are swell!

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