Zumba on parade

Too bad Americans are so easily diverted. Right now, it’s “silly season,” the period every four years when people take leave of their senses over a couple of issues and reveal their utter lack of understanding about the state of America, let alone their ignorance about our political system and how there’s so little difference between either candidate. Note the “breadth” of the topics touched on tonight.

Actually, most Americans don’t care at all about what happens in Washington. Politics has been handed over to the wealthiest, who decry current tax rates that are the lowest they’ve been in 70 years. In the land of the free, money talks and when you have money like the Koch Brothers, you can drive almost any debate. If you have been paying attention to the tea leaves, you know the train’s left the station, at least for this four-year cycle. Continue reading

We know less than we think

There is a scourge that is affecting America, one where men and women with little to show in the way of results somehow think they are better qualified and more capable than others, particularly those in positions of leadership. This phenomenon has a name; it’s called the Dunning-Kruger effect, named after the two researchers at Cornell who came up with the hypothesis.

Another similar effect is illusory superiority, a cognitive bias that causes people to overestimate their positive qualities and abilities and to underestimate their negative qualities, relative to others. We are all guilty of this from time to time. Where it becomes problematic is when it seriously impairs people’s ability to think critically and see events through a realistic lens, framed by perspective and self-awareness of this bias. Continue reading