Friday, November 22, 2019

Five Simple Hacks to Improve Reasoning

  1. Avoid using claims containing the words I or you in arguments for general conclusions. Such claims are often irrelevancies or small sample fallacies. Example: "I'm offended. I don't know anyone who voted for Proposition X." I  and you are often fine in non-arguments and arguments about individual circumstances.
  2. Avoid claims starting with the word who, another inadvertent trap for irrelevancies. Example: "Who's to say?"
  3. Possibilities are irrelevant. Probabilities and expected values are relevant. The expected value is the probability of an outcome times the value of an outcome. A 64 percent chance of gaining $10,000 has an expected value of $6,400.
  4. Hear a media report about a social science study making political or parenting claims, especially causal claims, but know nothing about the study details? Treat the study as junk science until proven otherwise. The study probably failed to control for or tease out genetic causes and/or other causes that contradict the agendas of establishment social scientists. In addition, publication bias, replication failures, and many other flaws make most social science junk science. They have track records of consistently promoting totalitarian activism. They are paid comparative large sums of money to produce lies. Why should the burden be on us to spend thousands of unpaid hours ferreting out their lies?
  5. Ignore early studies on rodents or studies of cells unless working in those fields. The probabilities that such studies will lead to something important in humans are tiny.

No comments: