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The political implications of the D-K effect

by Peter Rose 9 months ago in new world order

Why do politicians treat others as they do?

The political implications of the D-K effect

Why do politicians treat others as they do?

The Dunning-Kruger effect is a hypothesis in social psychology which seeks to explain why some people have false perceptions of their own ability; when compared to others.

An example of this is shown by a series of tests given to a group of students and then the students were asked to say how well they thought the other students had done in the same tests. Those who found the tests hard to do assumed everyone, all the other students, would have also found them difficult and so they gave lower scores to the other students. Those who found the test relatively easy, assumed that everyone found them easy and so gave higher marks to the other students.

The psychologists call this an unconscious bias regarding their own ability. Those who find tests hard, believe everyone finds them hard and so rates others below themselves; while those who found the tests easy, assume everyone found them easy and rated others above themselves. So the people with lesser intellectual ability thought themselves better than others while those with greater intellectual ability thought others better than themselves. While intellectual ability is not the only measurement of the “worth” of a person, and is certainly not a measure of “goodness” in any human; this does show how self worth can be distorted. Self confidence and self belief are huge factors in the success and even well-being of every individual. Much of each individuals level of self esteem is constructed during childhood. It can be changed but this change takes greater effort as we get older.

In everyday life, in the interaction between people, most people automatically deal with the various personalities they meet, without effort, without any in depth analysis of those personalities. In politics the effect, on millions of other people, a particular personality can have matters. Because of the nature of most present systems of democratic governance, the personality of a political leader, the way they unconsciously “value” the intellect of those around them, will have an effect on the policies that are placed on the whole nation.

If, and this has to be accepted as implied in the Dunning-Kruger hypothesis, this unconscious bias applies to all aspects of a persons psychological make up and not just to the intellectual ability; then the potential for both good and harm get increased. A person who views, for example; their own acceptance of the existence of ethereal spirits who can influence earthy events as simply obvious with no need for analysis, will unconsciously assume everyone else has the same acceptance and they will “rate” any who do not have this acceptance, as below, inferior, to themselves. A person who has a “built in” understanding of global economics, will assume that everyone they discuss the subject with, also has a total easy grasp of the effects of economic policy. This will lead them to assume they do not need to detail out the consequences of any change. To them these consequences are so obvious they do not need stating. Thus an adviser on economic policy, will brief a political leader with the unspoken belief that the politician will fully understand the results of a proposed change. This may not be an accurate understanding. The politician may make their own assumptions about the consequences and these may differ from the “experts” expectation. The results could be damaging to so many ordinary citizens affected by a policy that is put into practice based on misconception and misunderstanding. The wise politician will understand their own limitations and always have more than one trusted adviser on every subject. They will also have the courage and humility to ask for the consequences to be explained. Unfortunately humility is a rare in political leaders.

This same reasoning can be applied to security situations, The civilian political leader will be advised by military people who have many years of experience. They could very easily assume that the politician they advise, has a grasp of the military ramifications and implications of every bit of advice. The politician will assume that the military advisers understand the effects of any policy has on the electoral support within the political party fronted by this politician. Neither of these assumption may be very accurate.

It is simple to say that understanding these concepts should lead to a series of “checks and balances” that compensate for all unconscious bias in everyone involved in decision making. In real life there are sudden emergencies that require very fast reaction, instant decision making. In real life human nature and the individuality of each person will result in irrational behavior. Taking an instant dislike to another person will occur, a past shared “domestic” experience is viewed unfavorably by one person and this will influence the levels of rational cooperation . Opposing personalities, who both advise a global leader on the same subject, may give advice based on their dislike of the other adviser rather than competent rations analysis.

Democracy, in most nations, has become a contest. A periodic competition to see which fixed ideology can win the most votes. Democracy needs to evolve away from competition between entrenched idealists and become a cooperation on the best future path. By definition of democracy, this is the best future for the majority of the people. How to eliminate, or better still utilize; the personality and unconscious bias within political leaders is a complex subject. It is possible that removing politics from government, while still maintaining a democratic ( by the people for the people) system of control is the way forward. Fix departmental budgets as % of tax income and make the only way to change those fixed % be by referendum. This will reduce the political rivalry and bring the focus back to effectiveness. Make cooperation between capital and labor more important than the politically generated ideological competition between them. Ban asset stripping, ban financial speculation, reward long term investment, reduce the power of unions, focus on the efficiency and productivity of government controlled areas, fix a maximum percentage that can be charged, in any total, for any and all loan repayments. One that is relative to bank rates. Focus education on the needs of enterprise and the flexibility of labour skills. Reward genuine entrepreneurial innovation and invention. By these means reduce the power of any persons psychology to affect the lives of the general population.

new world order

About the author

Peter Rose

Collections of "my" vocal essays with additions, are available as printed books ASIN 197680615 and 1980878536 also some fictional works and some e books available at Amazon;-


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