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Thursday, 24 December 2015

Thoroughly Deceived by Confirmation Bias

The Trap of Confirmation Bias

By Prof. Thomas Gilovich (LINK to article)
"The brain's job is to make sense of the world, and it does so — easily, rapidly and generally accurately . . "  
The brain's job is indeed to make sense of the world, but the author is being wildly overoptimistic about its accuracy, i.e. the extent to which it correlates with objective reality, which is why "We're Doomed", as Roy Scranton writes in a recent op-ed.

The sense our brain is capable of making of the world was good enough for facilitating our survival in the environment in which it evolved, long before the first states and civilisations emerged from it, thereby creating an artificial environment shaped over the centuries by society's ruling elites to their own personal advantage, at the expense of society at large.

The sense we make of this environment is largely determined by the personal self-interests of these ruling elites and the academics they employ to create a "national narrative. It is an environment, social order and narrative which serves them and their favoured (especially wealthy and academic) clients very well, and which they thus want to maintain, despite it being inherently unjust, inhumane and unsustainable on our finite, vulnerable and overpopulated planet, which their own self-interests blinds them to.

I elaborate on these ideas, which have the potential to provide the understanding that might yet save us from ourselves, in this and appended BLOGS.

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