Tenacity of Nonsensical Opinions: Resisting the Allure of Certainty
Keywords:Post-truth era, Dangers of moral certainty, Overconfidence, Intellectual humility, Expert predictions, Replication crisis, Cognitive flexibility, Evidence-based management, Evidence in the courtroom
We live in the age of post-truth and arrogance, where lying has become so acceptable that we have numerous euphemisms for deceit. A major threat to the success of a society or organization is the feeling of certainty. People overestimate how much they actually know. This problem is compounded by the fact that what passes for truth is often a distortion of reality. Institutions such as our court system have demonstrated that truth is not the main priority, further exacerbating the problem. This paper examines the dangers of certainty. People with too much confidence in their opinions may have mental flaws that can be dangerous. Moreover, much of the research in areas such as medicine and management cannot be replicated and turns out to be untrue.
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