By exposing children as young as four to the borderline cruelty of number guestimation tests the authors found differences in individuals' "approximate number system." The study's conclusion, which I summarily reject because it conflicts with my already deeply-held worldviews, is that this inherent "number sense" is not only an inborn trait, but an indicator of future math ability.
"The relationship between 'number sense' and math ability is important and intriguing because we believe that 'number sense' is universal, whereas math ability has been thought to be highly dependent on culture and language and take many years to learn," Libertus says, pausing to cacklingly play some ominous diminished chords on a large pipe organ beneath a dripping candelabra amidst the formaldehyde-jarred brains in her dungeon-like science-lair. "Thus, a link between the two is surprising and raises many important questions and issues, including one of the most important ones, which is whether we can train a child's number sense with an eye to improving his future math ability."The evil Dr. Libertus may have a point. This study does raise some very important questions, such as how we can eradicate this genetic disorder from our species.
After all, there is precedent for this sort of genomic invasion, what with eight percent of the human genome having been inserted by viruses. It's certainly possible that the numbers have infected us in the same way, inserting numerism into our cells in order to create a monster race of human mathemarians preprogrammed to do their evil numerist bidding at a moment's notice. Numerism may be nature, rather than nurture. And thus, it is a disease.
Now, I'm normally not an advocate of eugenics, but in this case it may be our only hope for survival. Now I'm not saying that we should round up the numerically-adept and keep them in calculation camps while preventing them from reproducing via forced sterilization.
I'm not saying that at all.
But it's not a bad idea.