How does that relate to all what was said (and sang) about 'rat race'?
through giving me access to good ideas of the "invest in index funds" level
for me the point is about getting *consistently* good ideas, getting reliable ideas where applying scientific method is too hard. It is much less about self-improvement as it is about community improvement in the face of more and more connected (and thus weird) world. Rationality is epistemology for the internet era.
A slightly broader theory: being too cooperative makes live easy for the non cooperators (the state in the Soviet Union case, but it also works in cases when people fall for some stupid maniulations). There must be many equilibria and some cultures stay at some middle level, they don't aim at the most productive ones out of fear not to be pushed into the least productive.
Sounds like https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Floating_signifier