Over at the Frontal Cortex blog on Wired.com, professional pontificator Jonah Lehrer explains recent research that shows that political talking heads — people like Jon Stewart, or Anderson Cooper, or their evil twin, Glenn Beck — are actually less likely to predict with accuracy the outcome of a given political situation than random choice, like, say, drawing a prediction out of a hat.
The reason for the experts’ dearth of skills? Cockiness:
The main reason for the inaccuracy has to do with overconfidence. Because the experts were convinced that they were right, they tended to ignore all the evidence suggesting they were wrong. This is known as confirmation bias, and it leads people to hold all sorts of erroneous opinions.
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