29 February 2012

Too Stupid for Democracy

"...(A) growing body of research has revealed... that democratic elections produce mediocre leadership and policies."

Okay, first of all, the snip is accurate in meaning; you can verify that for yourself in paragraph one.

To save you time, here are the highlights that lay out the argument and conclusion:

"...(Researchers) have demonstrated again and again that people are self-delusional when it comes to their own intellectual skills..."

Corollary: Incompetent people can't see or grasp that they are incompetent, or in the researchers' words: "...(I)ncompetent people are inherently unable to judge the competence of other people, or the quality of those people's ideas."

By extension, unfortunately: "...We're just as undiscerning about the skills of others as about ourselves."

Why?: "'If you have gaps in your knowledge in a given area, then you’re not in a position to assess your own gaps or the gaps of others...'"

"...(T)ruly ignorant people may be the worst judges of candidates and ideas... but we all suffer from a degree of blindness stemming from our own personal lack of expertise..."

"'...(V)ery smart ideas are going to be hard for people to adopt, because most people don't have the sophistication to recognize how good an idea is...'"

"As a result, no amount of information or facts about political candidates can override the inherent inability of many voters to accurately evaluate them."

Fraud, as in stealing an election, helps, too. (Glance left.)

A computer simulation assuming "leadership skills" are plotted on a bell curve was run, meaning that "...(E)ach voter was incapable of recognizing the leadership skills of a political candidate as being better than his or her own." The result?:  "When such an election was simulated, candidates whose leadership skills were only slightly better than average always won." (Emphasis Mine.)

Now here's the thing: leadership skills and thus the ability to evaluate them are not--not--distributed in a neat bell curve. They are obviously skewed strongly towards the majority of people being closer to "follower" (bad leaders) than to "good or great leader". (Don't bother arguing against this: you know it's right.)

Therefore, Our democratic election process that "always" produces a winner who is "slightly better than average" actually means that We are really electing people more skewed towards bad leader than to good.

And you know that's spot-on right. Too stupid for democracy, indeed.

The Jenius Has Spoken.

[Update: 12 March 2012: Ah, Mississippi. The brain-dead canary in the insufferable coal mine We call "democracy." According to Public Policy Polling, 52% of voters in The Magnolia State believe Obama is a Muslim and 66% don't believe in evolution. Dixie has riz!]


Tanke said...

Education, or lack of, is the problem behind 90% of Puerto Rico's problems.

Ms. Conciencia said...

Cannot express anything than -Damn! You're so right, fuck!-