- With lots of eyes, the median position is most likely to be right. Adaptive markets FTW.
- Smart folks generate, and promote, and argue for alternative hypotheses.
- Different smart folks generate conflicting hypotheses.
- Most of the hypotheses generated (and adopted) by smart folks are wrong.
- Occasionally, relatively independent of the intelligence of the smart person, a hypothesis pans out.
- The lucky, unusual, correct hypotheses are the foundation for all of the difference between our lifestyle in America today, and that of the dirt-eating Mesopotamian peasant 5000 years ago.
- IF smart people weren't generating dozens of wrong hypotheses all the damn time, we'd be a lot worse off as a society.
- However, on average, the average smart person should not expect that anywhere near half of their contrarian positions are correct.
- Really, this is a particular case of the generalized competition-benefit. Trick lots of folks into playing positional (status) games, and get 2nd order benefits to everyone else, while the competitors waste huge amounts of energy mostly losing. And then we celebrate the winners, to get more folks to do the same thing.
The virtue of excellence