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« "A science of science journalism & filmmaking" vs. "Throw strikes & keep 'em off the bases" (lecture synopsis & slides) | Main | More discussion of SPBMC ... »

"Who am I? Why am I here?" My (ongoing) trip to West Point

At West Point yesterday & today, where I'm giving talks & today co-teaching a criminal law class.

The military, it seems to me, is an institution that is ruthlessly self-evaluative & remarkably unambivalent -- to point of lacking any self-consciousness of the attitude it has adopted -- about use of empirical methods of self-assessment.

The questions & discussions are great & there are tons of really smart people here thinking about how to teach critical thinking & cultivate professional judgment.

The educational enviornment here is, I think, a token of how successfully the US military has adapted its practices and outlooks to the political culture of the Liberal Republic of Science.

I'm not an historian, of course, but it does seem to me that unpardonable damage has been done to our military by a civilian leadership that lacked these very commitments to empirical self-evaluation & liberal principles of self-government.

Some lecture slides:

What is 'cultural cognition'?  I'll show you!

“Motivated System 2 Reasoning”: Rationality in a Polluted Science Communication Environment

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Reader Comments (4)

Dan -

Thought you might think this interesting:

November 1, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterJoshua

The military being "ruthlessly self-evaluative" is quite right. The classic example is how the U.S. military is "remarkably unambivalent" about its use of IQ testing. A decade ago I interviewed a retired head psychometrician for one of the major service branches. He told me about how he'd given Herrnstein and Murray the AFQT test data that makes up the core of "The Bell Curve." I asked him what he thought of "The Bell Curve." He said that from his decades of experience analyzing testing in the military, Herrnstein and Murray's only fault was that they didn't go far enough.

November 3, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterSteve Sailer

@Joshua--thanks. I missed that. I'm sure b/c of motivated reasoning of some sort.

November 5, 2014 | Registered CommenterDan Kahan

Joshua--thanks. I missed that. I'm sure b/c of motivated reasoning of some sort.

independence day usa

May 8, 2015 | Unregistered Commentermac

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