Sunday, August 7, 2016

Fact-resistant humans are threatening the ability of Earth to sustain life

Andy Borowitz reports that "Scientists have discovered a powerful new strain of fact-resistant humans who are threatening the ability of Earth to sustain life."


Actually, we DO understand the psychology of this phenomenon.  We know that human cognition which includes storytelling and logical thinking did not evolve to discern TRUTH but simply to enhance the probability of survival and reproductive success.  Right?  We are exquisitely tuned to detect inauthentic or flawed STORIES, not whether or not the stories are based on or contradict hard evidence.  On the contrary, to conserve energy under severe cognitive load, we basically delegate reasoning from evidence and first principles — which is HARD — to much more subconscious heuristics that are predisposed to select those stories framed to confirm existing beliefs and to filter out those stories which contradict them.  It’s called ‘confirmation bias.'

Borowitz is right:  shocks required to break through confirmation bias could include hunger, thirst or even respiration.

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