#162: Intelligent & Greedy
Ambition is the force that mobilizes intelligence
Genius is a cave is my go-to metaphor for an apathetic intellectual. Even with full awareness of his ingenuity, the genius will remain in a cave because he doesn't care to benefit from his intelligence. He isn’t really a threat, because he hasn’t fully unlocked his powers. They are mainly dormant. Genius in a cave is your standard brilliant but broke Soviet intellectual.
Intelligence implies the ability to figure something out but not necessarily the desire to do so. Greed implies an extreme desire to get something, but not the ability to do it. Intelligence is the ship that needs to be moved by the wind of strong emotion. Ambition is the force that mobilizes intelligence. Unlike communism, capitalism is effective at extracting talent because it monetizes intellect, thus giving it a higher purpose than just self-expression.
Finally, my greed will ensure I commit to my most authentic intelligence. If I do something I’m not exceptional in, I am risking not getting what I want. My greed allows me to unlock my best-bet kind of intelligence. Lots of smart people around, but there are few who truly win. To get what I want I need to utilize my intelligence in a very specific way toward a desired outcome. So I tell myself:
Productize your intelligence through ambition.