Ideological Diversity Matters More than the Usual Kinds (with Ratigan)
[For those of you getting my RSS feed: I’ll soon start writing real blog posts about politics. For now I’m making videos accessible through my blog]
Dylan Ratigan and I talked about how to get people out of their righteous certainty. He used the metaphor of people being asleep (certain that they know) and awake (awakened to the true state of affairs, in which they realize how blind and arrogant they were before). He also said that good social networks are the key to waking up. I agreed enthusiastically because what he said matches so perfectly with what I wrote about the confirmation bias (in ch. 4), and how the only cure for the confirmation bias is other people, with different beliefs, who can look for evidence to disconfirm your beliefs. Our conversation then turned to the value of diversity, and how it is really intellectual and ideological diversity that matters — that can wake people up — whereas when people talk about diversity they usually just mean racial, gender, and ethnic diversity without any regard for whether these “diverse” people think differently. I was so pleased to have the opportunity to talk about the importance of ideological diversity, which I have argued would improve the quality of thinking and research in the social sciences.