Conflict Theorist vs. Mistake Theorist

Recently Scott Alexander wrote about the policy decision-making dichotomy: Mistake vs. Conflict. I.e. there are people who engage in policy making in the mistake way (you thouroughly think over every decision regardless of your interests/self-interests/class interests, gather smart guys together to help you etc., and you find that the current bad state of affairs is because of some error in the decision-making process), and who engage in the conflict way (you stop your thinking at the “this is all about conflict of interests” thing). Sure, this dichotomy is not that staright, and it’s hugely simplified but you get the gist. There are a lot of comments there. But I think they are missing the neuro/genetic part of the story. I mean there are people who are conflict-y by nature (some environmental factors exist too), there are those who more rational, there are people who are more or less on the both sides. This leads to obviously different ways in dealing with problems (not only political ones). Besides, as someone already mentioned in the comments, people may behave differently in different situations. So in the end it’s useful to know that such dichotomy may appear in the decision-making process. Though I don’t know exactly how to rule out this in reality considering that we are all humans after all. And even scientists are humans too.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *