[ExI] bad news for smart people

William Flynn Wallace foozler83 at gmail.com
Mon Mar 9 22:34:35 UTC 2020

I watch a lot of tennis and see players hit the ball down the line where
the net is higher and more often than they would hit the net if they played
it up the middle, they hit the net.  Why?  I think it's because they are
using the same stroke for both shots.

What I think is needed in training is an alert system - "alert!  high net"
Say this to yourself when you do that and it primes you to change your
stroke to aim the ball higher.

What Adrian is talking about, I think, is what I do:  "Alert.
possible dissonance ahead."  So when that alert goes off, I pay close
attention to my own ideas and the contrary message.  If I don't I may say
later "Whoa, wait a minute.  That's not what I think at all.  Why didn't I
ask a question?"
If in a book I"ll put a ?? by it.

bill w

On Mon, Mar 9, 2020 at 3:18 PM Adrian Tymes via extropy-chat <
extropy-chat at lists.extropy.org> wrote:

> It takes a certain kind of smart to spot these biases in oneself.  Part of
> that is simply a commitment to do so, out of an honest recognition that it
> simply works better (and thus, recognizing signs when it might be the case,
> versus when people are just trolling or deluded - including and especially,
> when the first source you hear of a major new topic from, has its facts
> wrong - out of delusion or malice - and there is nothing that warrants
> serious concern, just like you previously thought because you had not
> previously heard of the topic).
> On Mon, Mar 9, 2020 at 11:41 AM William Flynn Wallace via extropy-chat <
> extropy-chat at lists.extropy.org> wrote:
>> You would think that being smarter would help one avoid the cognitive
>> biases I have been harping on.  Nope.  In fact, we are worse than average
>> people.
>> We are better than average people in spotting these biases in other
>> people, but worse in spotting them in ourselves. Because we're smart,
>> right?  We do thinking better.  Wrong.
>> People tend to fit new information into their belief system and often
>> twist it to fit, so they don't have to change their mind.  Smart people are
>> better at this.  Not good.
>> The population consists of 90% credulous people and 10% contrarians (I
>> made those figures up but give yourself a few days and you might forget I
>> said that I made them up and you will treat them like facts).  You know
>> what happens when a newspaper prints a retraction a week later - no effect
>> on believing what they printed before.
>> So you hear that vaccines cause autism.  So that becomes a belief.
>> Beliefs are very hard to shake - see above for reasons.  One psych study
>> gave students a list of myths in psychology, such as using only 10% of our
>> brains.  The teacher during the semester addressed all of the myths and
>> showed why there were wrong.  At the end of the term, the students acted as
>> if they never heard the contrary information and believed what they
>> believed to start the semester. Discouraging, right?
>> bill w
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