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Ask A Genius (or Two): Conversation with Erik Haereid and Rick Rosner on Reproductive Rights (Part Eleven)


Author(s): Scott Douglas Jacobsen

Publication (Outlet/Website): In-Sight: Independent Interview-Based Journal

Publication Date (yyyy/mm/dd): 2020/05/01


Rick Rosner and I conduct a conversational series entitled Ask A Genius on a variety of subjects through In-Sight Publishing on the personal and professional website for Rick. According to some semi-reputable sources gathered in a listing hereRick G. Rosner may have among America’s, North America’s, and the world’s highest measured IQs at or above 190 (S.D. 15)/196 (S.D. 16) based on several high range test performances created by Christopher HardingJason BettsPaul Cooijmans, and Ronald Hoeflin. He earned 12 years of college credit in less than a year and graduated with the equivalent of 8 majors. Erik Haereid earned a score at 185, on the N-VRA80. He is an expert in Actuarial Sciences. Both scores on a standard deviation of 15. A sigma of 6.00+ (or ~6.13 or 6.20) for Rick – a general intelligence rarity of 1 in 1,009,976,678+ (with some at rarities of 1 in 2,314,980,850 or 1 in 3,527,693,270) – and ~5.67 for Erik – a general intelligence rarity of 1 in 136,975,305. If a higher general intelligence score, then the greater the variability in, and margin of error in, the general intelligence scores because of the greater rarity in the population. This amounts to a joint interview or conversation with Erik Haereid, Rick Rosner, and myself.

Keywords: America, Erik Haereid, Norway, Rick Rosner, Scott Douglas Jacobsen.

Ask A Genius (or Two): Conversation with Erik Haereid and Rick Rosner on Reproductive Rights (Part Eleven)[1],[2]*

*Please see the footnotes, bibliography, and citation style listing after the interview.*

Scott Douglas Jacobsen: Let’s talk about a long-standing social and rights issue in the queue before closing up in Part Twelve. Women’s rights and abortion, what are women’s rights in the 21st century?

Rick Rosner: I don’t have much interesting to say about it. It is equality. Where equality has historically been denied, perhaps, a little bit of weighting in women’s favour to compensate, to get women up to an equal position. 30 years after the big push to get the Equal Rights Amendment ratified, the 38th state has ratified it, which should allow it to be made an amendment to the Constitution. But it has been so long since the other states ratified it; so, it doesn’t get automatically ratified. Now, that whole thing – any attention being paid to that – has been lost in the coronavirus avalanche of other stuff happening. Women’s rights also implies rights for people who are differently gendered. People with different sexualities. That’s it.

Erik Haereid: I come from a pioneer country as to women’s rights; at least that have been my impression since the 1970’s. My generation of men have been told all our lives that women are historically suppressed and have to be favorized to be equalized; in politics, business and traditionally male areas. Some of my answers are biased because of that upbringing and culture.

It’s improving worldwide. In secular democratic countries I think it’s close to equality. In some countries, you have these old religious and/or rigid cultural structures that still treat women as slaves or with reduced power and opportunities. I think this will change rapidly because of a global culture that makes it increasingly difficult to treat women in any other way than men. It’s the same with any discrimination; when the discrimination becomes visible or transparent to the people, it’s hard to maintain it. Open societies are the solution to equality.

Jacobsen: Any personal stance on abortion?

Rosner: Yes, abortion is a basic human right within reason. That is has been wildly politicized, especially lately. It wasn’t that big of a political issue for much of history. Any laws in the early 19th century against abortion were strict to protect women’s health to prevent people from doing abortions who were not trained to do it, e.g., poisoning women to abort the fetus. It is only when conservatives realized abortion could be politicized to activate, to motivate, their base that is becoming a political issue. Now, it is a ridiculously political issue in the U.S. Because the Right is saying the Left is pushing to abort babies after they are born via late-term abortion. The deal is, liberals want to maintain medical professionals’ rights to make decisions about fetuses and babies that are born with catastrophic birth defects, which they won’t survive for more than a few days. The main example being anencephalic babies; babies born without brains or babies who die in the womb. It is not really an abortion if somebody is 8-months pregnant and the fetus dies. Then you have to perform an abortion procedure to remove the dead fetus. Democrats don’t want to lose the legal right for doctors to make decisions about dead or catastrophically defective late-term fetuses.

Republicans are saying, “No, when liberals insist on maintaining the right to keep from prosecuting the doctors who remove an 8-month-old dead fetus, liberals really want to give women the right to kill a baby, even a newborn, just because having a baby makes women sad.” It is a lie; and, it is bullshit. Certainly, there are reasonable limits to put on abortion. A woman shouldn’t be able, in my view, to abort a healthy 8-month-old fetus just because she suddenly decided that she doesn’t want the baby. But up through 3, 4, or 5 months, it is reasonable to have the right to abort the fetus. Even the Catholic Church didn’t have a problem with abortion until the quickening, which is the perceptible movement of the fetus in like – I don’t know – the 4th month of something, that’s what I think.

Haereid: I am in favour of abortion within 12 weeks. It’s biased, though. It contains many questions and few answers, like when is life, what is a person and when, when does consciousness occur, what is a life worth and to who…

We kill people all the time, without major consequences when the power’s rules accept it like in wars or within the legal system. We kill animals for food, yes, for fun, and we seem to have a divided view of what a life is worth. That’s one reason it’s difficult to establish objective rules concerning such as abortion.

One thing is avoiding hurting the individual, like when we kill animals for food. Another thing is removing another soul’s and consciousness’ opportunity to live a life, even though the victim doesn’t feel pain when it’s killed. A few weeks after conception, you don’t have thoughts or feelings, but you have the potential for life as a person; it’s a matter of weeks and a few months.

When does the embryo/fetus become separated from the mother’s body, mind, soul? I am pro-euthanasia, because I think we should, as much as possible, decide over our own body. I also think that women should decide whether they want to keep the embryo or not, until we have decided objectively, through common sense, when the unborn life is a distinct human life; it is separated from the mother.

I leave to others to say if that’s within 6, 12 or 24 weeks, even though I have my biased opinion. What about the guy? Is it after the conception just a part of the woman’s body? You could argue that from conception it’s human life or a life-potential. That makes it even more difficult, more uncertain, and more as an object for common sense and compromises; you have equal strong logical opinions in each camp.

Jacobsen: Is this stance altered by personal upbringing or social milieu, in America or in Norway?

Rosner: A lot of things that conservatives currently believe are largely the product of a push from conservative media via deceptive reporting and deceptive conservative beliefs. Conservative beliefs are increasingly extreme and increasingly garbagy because of a continuous push from biased, garbagy conservative news sources. The main one being Fox News. The more extreme ones including BreitbartOne America News Network. No one is effectively policing conservative news sources to root out garbage reporting, masquerading as news. There’s a smaller problem with liberal reporting. It is nowhere near as deceptive. It is more a problem of profit-driven news media with 24-hour news stations like CNN and MSNBCCNN has a number of terrible news habits. But it is less a matter of liberal bias and more a matter of what gets them good ratings.

Haereid: From 1978 Norwegian women have had the right to abortion the first 12 weeks. So, I guess so. Of course, I have done some thoughts about the issue, as I have mentioned here, but it’s difficult to establish a logical and reasonable foundation about abortion and rights, and then one becomes a function of one’s cultural view, gut feeling, your parent’s virtues and so on. I find profound pros and cons concerning abortion. There are no influential, significant political anti-abortion environments in Norway. It’s minor milieus.

Women’s rights have been a keystone in Norway since I was a child. Now it’s more discussions about men’s rights than women’s rights.

Jacobsen: What is the concept of a person in the context of abortion?

Rosner: The idea of abortion and when it is acceptable is that you do not want to abort a fetus that has full human consciousness. That, at 4 months, at 3 months, and before, the fetus is not thinking and feeling to the degree that the baby or a full-grown human being feels and thinks. That’s the deal. A more developed consciousness is, I believe, the demarcation between a fetus that can be aborted and a baby that can’t be. We kill highly conscious beings for meat and sport. We have all sorts of justifications and rationalizations, or ignore the issue. There’s no way that a 10-week or a 2-week fetus is as conscious as a dog, a cat, a chicken, or a horse.

Haereid: That’s difficult to say, because it’s a continuous process. I don’t know enough about when and how the different organs and parts of the embryo/fetus develop. What do we define as a person? When do we become conscious lives? Maybe it’s better to look at it as a life-potential; the prenatal life-process that we undergo during the first nine months after the conception.

At some time during prenatal development, the fetus becomes kind of a human, with increasing cognitive abilities. But simpler animals, like cats do also have consciousness. But they don’t have the same potential; we know what the human fetus will become after some weeks and months, even though it’s less conscious than a cat at that moment. If we look at it this way the embryo is also a human or a person because the potential is the same; it’s only a matter of time. This makes it tricky; it’s not any obvious answer, I guess.

Jacobsen: Will there ever be a sufficient bridge between the conceptual gulf of pro-choice/pro-women’s rights versus pro-life/pro-fetus rights? How does the situation compare between America and Norway from relative perspectives for the two of you?

Rosner: No, because – no, pro-life is a politically loaded, particularly so – even though pro-choice is political too, it is couched in religion and religious feeling. That you are ending or destroying a soul. As I said, in the Catholic Church, I think they didn’t think a soul entered the fetuses body until there was the quickening. The current religious view being pushed, which is a highly politicized view: upon conception, that thing has a soul; and you kill a baby. So, no, that can never be reconciled with any kind of view that allows for abortion.

Haereid: It’s no clear logical or reasonable solution, no way to a general truth, so I can’t see any path to such a bridge because of the highly emotional and cultural fundaments the decisions are based on.

A woman can have motives to remove the fetus despite of the objective value of the fetus. A common sense of a fetus’s value is not necessarily in coherence with the mother’s.

If you remove a fetus you kill a 50 percent female potential. If you give women the right to remove their fetuses you can’t at the same time say that they have rights, because they remove a (defenceless) future woman too.

Jacobsen: How does the situation compare between America and Norway from relative perspectives for the two of you?

Rosner: In America, we’ve got 250,000,000 adults. It’s a big country. We don’t have a handle on conservative propaganda, where other countries, like in Australia Fox News is not allowed to call itself “news,” which has smaller populations. We have a huge exploitable population. We have 100,000,000 American adults who are believers in and consumers of conservative propaganda. It is a huge base. It is a powerful political base. There is a whole political media, rich person, complex to continue to exploit these people for political gain. Much of our politics for the past 40 years has been based on exploiting conservatives.

Haereid: In Norway, equality is more important than a single life. Women’s right to have an abortion as part of an overall equalizing process between men and women, is prioritized before saving the unborn life-potential.

From my angle, it seems that it’s the opposite in America. The single life-potential is more important than equalizing. This is a part of the American culture that has made it dominant worldwide, I think. It’s the winning concept that everyone has opportunities; it’s up to you what you want to do with your life. If you fail, it’s your fault, not the society’s fault. If you win, it’s your profit, nobody else’s. Every single youth buys such propaganda. It’s extremely motivating. To share is less motivating. At least until the reward is bigger by sharing than improving individually.

I think that most Norwegians (5.5 million) mean that the protection of a life-potential or a right to life starts after 12 weeks.

Appendix I: Footnotes

[1] Erik Haereid has been a member of Mensa since 2013, and is among the top scorers on several of the most credible IQ-tests in the unstandardized HRT-environment. He is listed in the World Genius Directory. He is also a member of several other high IQ Societies.

Erik, born in 1963, grew up in OsloNorway, in a middle class home at Grefsen nearby the forest, and started early running and cross country skiing. After finishing schools he studied mathematics, statistics and actuarial science at the University of Oslo. One of his first glimpses of math-skills appeared after he got a perfect score as the only student on a five hour math exam in high school.

He did his military duty in His Majesty The King’s Guard (Drilltroppen)).

Impatient as he is, he couldn’t sit still and only studying, so among many things he worked as a freelance journalist in a small news agency.  In that period, he did some environmental volunteerism with Norges Naturvernforbund (Norwegian Society for the Conservation of Nature), where he was an activist, freelance journalist and arranged ‘Sykkeldagen i Oslo’ twice (1989 and 1990) as well as environmental issues lectures. He also wrote some crime short stories in A-Magasinet (Aftenposten (one of the main newspapers in Norway), the same paper where he earned his runner up (second place) in a nationwide writing contest in 1985. He also wrote several articles in different newspapers, magazines and so on in the 1980s and early 1990s.

He earned an M.Sc. degree in Statistics and Actuarial Sciences in 1991, and worked as an actuary novice/actuary from 1987 to 1995 in several Norwegian Insurance companies. He was the Academic Director (1998-2000) of insurance at the BI Norwegian Business School (1998-2000), Manager (1997-1998) of business insurance, life insurance, and pensions and formerly Actuary (1996-1997) at Nordea in Oslo Area, Norway, a self-employed Actuary Consultant (1996-1997), an Insurance Broker (1995-1996) at Assurance Centeret, Actuary (1991-1995) at Alfa Livsforsikring, novice Actuary (1987-1990) at UNI Forsikring.

In 1989 he worked in a project in Dallas with a Texas computer company for a month incorporating a Norwegian pension product into a data system. Erik is specialized in life insurance and pensions, both private and business insurances. From 1991 to 1995 he was a main part of developing new life insurance saving products adapted to bank business (Sparebanken NOR), and he developed the mathematics behind the premiums and premium reserves.

He has industry experience in accounting, insurance, and insurance as a broker. He writes in his IQ-blog the online newspaper Nettavisen. He has personal interests among other things in history, philosophy and social psychology.

In 1995, he moved to Aalborg in Denmark because of a Danish girl he met. He worked as an insurance broker for one year, and took advantage of this experience later when he developed his own consultant company.

In Aalborg, he taught himself some programming (Visual Basic), and developed an insurance calculation software program which he sold to a Norwegian Insurance Company. After moving to Oslo with his girlfriend, he was hired as consultant by the same company to a project that lasted one year.

After this, he became the Manager of business insurance in the insurance company Norske Liv. At that time he had developed and nurtured his idea of establishing an actuarial consulting company, and he did this after some years on a full-time basis with his actuarial colleague. In the beginning, the company was small. He had to gain money, and worked for almost two years as an Academic Director of insurance at the BI Norwegian Business School.

Then the consultant company started to grow, and he quitted BI and used his full time in NIA (Nordic Insurance Administration). This was in 1998/99, and he has been there since.

NIA provides actuarial consulting services within the pension and life insurance area, especially towards the business market. They was one of the leading actuarial consulting companies in Norway through many years when Defined Benefit Pension Plans were on its peak and companies needed evaluations and calculations concerning their pension schemes and accountings. With the less complex, and cheaper, Defined Contribution Pension Plans entering Norway the last 10-15 years, the need of actuaries is less concerning business pension schemes.

Erik’s book from 2011, Benektelse og Verdighet, contains some thoughts about our superficial, often discriminating societies, where the virtue seems to be egocentrism without thoughts about the whole. Empathy is lacking, and existential division into “us” and “them” is a mental challenge with major consequences. One of the obstacles is when people with power – mind, scientific, money, political, popularity – defend this kind of mind as “necessary” and “survival of the fittest” without understanding that such thoughts make the democracies much more volatile and threatened. When people do not understand the genesis of extreme violence like school killings, suicide or sociopathy, asking “how can this happen?” repeatedly, one can wonder how smart man really is. The responsibility is not limited to let’s say the parents. The responsibility is everyone’s. The day we can survive, mentally, being honest about our lives and existence, we will take huge leaps into the future of mankind.

Rick G. Rosner, according to some semi-reputable sources gathered in a listing here, may have among America’s, North America’s, and the world’s highest measured IQs at or above 190 (S.D. 15)/196 (S.D. 16) based on several high range test performances created by Christopher HardingJason BettsPaul Cooijmans, and Ronald Hoeflin. He earned 12 years of college credit in less than a year and graduated with the equivalent of 8 majors. He has received 8 Writers Guild Awards and Emmy nominations, and was titled 2013 North American Genius of the Year by The World Genius Directory with the main “Genius” listing here.

He has written for Remote ControlCrank YankersThe Man ShowThe EmmysThe Grammys, and Jimmy Kimmel Live!. He worked as a bouncer, a nude art model, a roller-skating waiter, and a stripper. In a television commercialDomino’s Pizza named him the “World’s Smartest Man.” The commercial was taken off the air after Subway sandwiches issued a cease-and-desist. He was named “Best Bouncer” in the Denver Area, Colorado, by Westwood Magazine.

Rosner spent much of the late Disco Era as an undercover high school student. In addition, he spent 25 years as a bar bouncer and American fake ID-catcher, and 25+ years as a stripper, and nearly 30 years as a writer for more than 2,500 hours of network television. Errol Morris featured Rosner in the interview series entitled First Person, where some of this history was covered by Morris. He came in second, or lost, on Jeopardy!, sued Who Wants to Be a Millionaire? over a flawed question and lost the lawsuit. He won one game and lost one game on Are You Smarter Than a Drunk Person? (He was drunk). Finally, he spent 37+ years working on a time-invariant variation of the Big Bang Theory.

Currently, Rosner sits tweeting in a bathrobe (winter) or a towel (summer). He lives in Los AngelesCalifornia with his wife, dog, and goldfish. He and his wife have a daughter. You can send him money or questions at LanceVersusRick@Gmail.Com, or a direct message via Twitter, or find him on LinkedIn, or see him on YouTube.”

[2] Individual Publication Date: May 1, 2020:; Full Issue Publication Date: September 1, 2020:

*High range testing (HRT) should be taken with honest skepticism grounded in the limited empirical development of the field at present, even in spite of honest and sincere efforts. If a higher general intelligence score, then the greater the variability in, and margin of error in, the general intelligence scores because of the greater rarity in the population.


In-Sight Publishing by Scott Douglas Jacobsen is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License. Based on a work at


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