Modern Horoscopes

I always get a kick out of these things because they are mostly bullshit. If you go through the questions, they tell you the combination of famous people you most resemble. None of the famous people are monsters or evil. The idea is to flatter the user, not horrify them. Still, I’d be tempted to have results that said the user had a brain like Hitler or Jack the Ripper, but I’d be a terrible astrologer. Here is my result:

Leonardo of Arc
You have an active imagination and free-spirited side, which means you dream big, believe anything can happen, and are open to new experiences that might present opportunities to learn and explore. You get these traits from Leonardo da Vinci, the genius artist, inventor and mathematician whose talent is still considered to be one of the greatest in the world.

But you’re also very disciplined, and have a strong work ethic that grounds your personality and gives all your big dreams and ideas the fuel to become reality. You get these traits from Joan of Arc, the bold, fearless French heroine who was also canonized as a Catholic saint.

Joan of Arc was probably a schizophrenic. She had “visions” and heard voices. There’s some speculation that she faked it and was some sort of a con-artist, but grifters don’t take their con so far that they get burned at the stake. Modern feminists have made her a heroine of their cause so that’s probably why the site used her in its rotation. I took the test a few more times and got different results each time so they may be using a random personality generator.

The IQ crowd puts a lot of stock in these sorts of profiles. The Big Five personality traits are the gold standard. You can take the self-exam here if you’re interested. I’ve given a lot of these types of exams in the past and I know a lot of companies that use them for management development. The military academies used to administer them, but I don’t know if that is still the case. At the academies, testing for leadership is of obvious value so they do a lot of it.

There’s a lot of good science behind it, but I’m not 100% sold. The reason I’ve always been a bit skeptical is I’ve taken these things and it is not hard to figure out the point of the questions. I’ve been able to game the test to get the result I wanted so I’m sure more devious minded people can do it with no problem. Then there is the fact people tend to lie on self-assessments. That said, I’ve been tested a lot so I’m probably not a great example. I also like reverse engineering these tests so I probably notice the patterns more readily that others.

Regardless, the Internet says I’m an artistic schizophrenic or a highly disciplined French heroine.

6 thoughts on “Modern Horoscopes

  1. About a million years ago, I had to take the Strong Interest Inventory to get into the same institution as young Chris here. The requirement was dropped at some point.

    I was required to take the Meyers Briggs thingamajig in an official setting at least once after graduating. I’ve also had to take it (purely voluntary!) in the corporate world and in grad school.

  2. horse puckey. USMA ’93. Never saw a single example of any of these types of tests. Never had any leadership test of that sort either as enlisted or officer

    • horse puckey. USMA ’93. Never saw a single example of any of these types of tests. Never had any leadership test of that sort either as enlisted or officer

      Don’t know. Maybe you just did not realize it. “Self-inventory tests” were developed by the US Military over a century ago. They have been administering IQ tests since WW1.

  3. When I was young, a company I was with hired an industrial psychologist. He interviewed everyone in a casual setting and then invited people in for more intense discussions about how they viewed themselves in the organization. It was obvious the guy was a fraud. This was before the diversity rackets caught on in corporate America. I suspect he moved into that racket soon after I met him.

    I had no interest in the job and decided to have some fun with the good doctor. I made up a pretty good violent fantasy that I let him slowly discover. Frankly, I was bit surprised he was that dumb, but I was young and unaware of the PhD rackets. He dutifully reported it to my superiors, who were smart enough to know I was gaming the good doctor.

    They got rid of him soon after.

  4. I have found, in a couple of different jobs, that the results of these personality tests can be manipulated, according to what personality type you want it to provide.

    The problem I have with it is that I find it hard to decide what personality the big dogs would want me to have so that I get more raises and promotions. So I usually end up by making it so that I come across as the biggest asshole possible.

  5. I have a ‘shovel-ready’ horoscope for all people, which I can issue to all at no great cost (or effort) to myself. It goes something like this:

    “You are frustrated and are being held back by people with less to offer than yourself. You are talented and sensitive, clever and deep. Of all the signs of the zodiac, yours is the most complete. You are always searching for even greater meaning in life and though it can be a difficult road as so many seek to obstruct you along the way. But take heart for just around the corner lies a bright future and you will soon reach your true destiny.”

    This, of course, would appeal to leaders and politicians because it contains the word “lies.”

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