James Owen Weatherall is a physicist, philosopher, and mathematician. He holds graduate degrees from Harvard, the Stevens Institute of Technology, and the University of California, Irvine, where he is presently an assistant professor of logic and philosophy of science. He has written for Slate and Scientific American.James' newest book, The Misinformation Age: How False Beliefs Spread is available now and is co-authored with Cailin O'Connor (@cailinmeister).We discuss:Are we moving backwards as an intellectual society?What is causing the 'splitting' of society into two sides?We are we so tribal in our thinking?Become a Patron!Help us grow and become a Patron today: https://www.patreon.com/smartpeoplepodcastSponsors:ZipRecruiter - Try ZipRecruiter for FREE at ZipRecruiter.com/smartpeople!Petal - It's about time there was a smarter, more modern credit card company that wants to help you succeed financially! Go to petalcard.com/smart today to find out more!Manscaped - Support our sponsor Manscaped and get 20% off, free shipping, and a free travel bag with the code SMART at manscaped.com.Donate:Donate here to support the show!
On The Gist, the 2020 candidates’ proposals shouldn’t be compared to some progressive ideal, but to some of the stuff we spend taxpayer dollars on now. In the interview, the pace of technological change means we might only be catching onto malicious disinformation techniques after it’s too late to counter them. Still, scientific inquiry is useful in telling us how manipulation works. In The Misinformation Age: How False Beliefs Spread, authors Cailin O'Connor and James Owen Weatherall argue that social dynamics often trump intellectual ones in determining what we fall for, including bogus information peddled by anti-vaxxers. “You, in the right social context, would hold a lot of false beliefs too,” says O’Connor. In the Spiel, putting the Anita Hill hearings in context. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
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