In this paper, Michael Woodley critiques Bruce Charlton's hypothesis that "clever-sillies" use their high IQs and openness to experience to construct social and political views that are farther from the truth than views generated be common sense and social intelligence. According to Woodley: 1) smart people are not necessarily less socially intelligent; 2) smart people might tend to be politically correct only in cultures where liberalism is the dominant view; 3) high-IQ individuals who score high on conscientiousness (and conformity) will adopt PC views in a liberal environment and conservative views in a conservative environment; 4) traditional cultures value dominance, while the modern West values counter-dominance (or egalitarianism); and 5) adopting politically correct views is a way to signal to others that you are altruistic and support egalitarianism, which is then rewarded with enhanced social status and greater access to resources.
Woodley draws on Inglehart's work that has found that, as Western societies have become wealthy, a focus on material concerns (e.g., wealth, security) gives way to an emphasis on post-materialist values, which include self-expression, autonomy, and equality. Social status come less from wealth and more from "higher" pursuits like altruism. This is an evolutionarily novel state of affairs. While men have traditionally been admired for dominant behaviors, now they are rewarded for self-effacement. Believing, for example, in a natural hierarchy among men might have at one time been seen as the mark of a dominant and thus admired man. Now it seems arrogant and ungenerous, and is consequently penalized. High-IQ folks understand this more clearly than others and thus adopt politically correct views.