The virtue of excellence
This Is supposed to be a plug for a new economic model. The model is bunk and the first forty minutes are an excellent summary of some neglected psychological research. I'ma come right out and say it. The parents-meh thing is wrong, the 50-nature/50-peer thing is wrong, the whole thing stinks.I don't know what the researchers fucked up but they're off their rockers. As far as I'm concerned, it's lipophobia all over again. (And England and her descendents remains one of the worst places in the world to grow up.)But...the non-screwy research (as per link) suggests resolution to the whole protect-the-weak thing that I find fascinating.Economic status does not matter. What matters is having a loving family and friends. Happy people don't want stuff. Don't feel the need for stuff. (Are difficult to push around.) Certainly, it's better to have your gestures of love be Porsches instead of off-kilter hand-knit blankets. But if you have real love, you'll notice the difference between the Porsche and the blanket is negligible compared to the satisfaction of knowing the person giving it to you. Once again I must promote an anti-meddling-idiot strategy. The way to get people into happy, stable communities is generally to get out of the way. Occasionally you may need to reverse some hysteresis, but as long as you stop new meddling idiots from inflicting new disasters, most of it will mend on its own. The Market is made of People. People solve shit. Typically, the Market is smarter than you. Or put another way, just as our genes don't care about our happiness, our happiness doesn't care about our genes. Yeah, they'll push for status. Yeah, getting status would end up being a very common hobby. But attaining happiness unavoidably puts the whole status thing in perspective. It's spice, not meat.
1. I'm 100% with you on the anti-meddling-idiot thing.2. Have you read Judith Harris. The research seems very strong. 3. Wealth is notably positively correlated with happiness from income 0 to income $60k. The stuff doesn't matter line is mostly crap. Stuff matters...and a lot.4. Killer point, that I intend to post on later. Happiness is just one thing people want. Clearly and obviously, happiness is not what most people chase most of the time. Undermines your point substantially.5. Status is one of those other things that outvotes happiness an awful lot of the time. Put your way...the genes win. Status > happiness. 6. Relationships trump stuff for happiness. Wealth, however, enables relationships.
I didn't know what Harris did wrong, but I figured it out.Harris thought she was studying differences in parenting, but did not in fact vary across the two most important variables.Show me the twin studies where one twin's parenting was outsourced to a government school, and the other's wasn't. The second can be illustrated thus: what would a parent with 10k hours of training in parenting look like? I'm not shocked to discover that random guesses by incompetent layhumans do not constitute effective parenting strategies. So in a sense Caplan is correct. You(plural) don't know how to parent. So either train, or just relax. Right for the wrong reasons, but frankly I'll take it.
Alrenous,My wife and I are running our lives as if your point 1 (gov't school vs. not) matters. We've talked extensively about it. I don't have that data, but have tentative acceptance.2. No parents (+/- 3) have 10K hours in parenting training. Hence...we aren't even sure that there IS a way to parent that is +1Sigma on relevant factors. All the Early Childhood learning methods we're familiar with are invisible by 25. Is it not reasonable to suppose that roughly the same is true of parenting method?
Is whether they're invisible at 25 dependent or independent of government schooling?By what method did you verify that the Early Childhood stuff is in fact accomplishing anything?If verified, by what method did you verify that the things accomplished by Early Childhood should in fact affect an adult? Learning math is supposed to teach logic, but generally doesn't, for instance. It is merely possible to learn logic by studying math. If you then go measure logic in adults by math education, you'll get nonsense, because the question is nonsense. A detail I find interesting is morality. The upshot here is that teaching morality doesn't lead to more moral behaviour - at least not through any extant curriculum - and it's not at all mysterious why that is. Ethics really are childishly simple, and children don't need education in it.Rather, adults have twisted ethics to suit their political ends, and convinced themselves their twisted ethics are true. Thus children's true ethics appear wrong and in need of 'educating.' In socially competent children, this moral education never overwrites their innate preferences, but rather they learn to politick - just like their parents. So if you did Harris' experiment on this, the result would depend on the details of measurement. If I was a social scientist interested in falsifying it, I would ask children, adults, and twin pairs questions about political hot-button issues and note how very different the answers are.If I wanted to confirm it, I would measure hypocrisy on these tenets. Professions of environmentalism would vary widely, but actual recycling would be almost independent of these beliefs. Likely constant, but possibly varying due to convenience factors or hysteresis.I would do a few preliminary studies with like five subjects to make sure I've picked a topic that actually displays these moral variances - cherry picking in advance.Luckily, I'm not a corrupt scientist, but my first guess is that most scientists don't even know how not to be corrupt. I am completely sure they're utterly unaware of how naturally corruption comes to them, with the exception of scientists named 'Hanson,' though I'd bet even Hanson doesn't know how to stop.
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