Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Ideas to Ponder: Ignoring Expert Judgement

|"Science is the belief of ignoring the experts."

We face lots of problems and situations on a daily basis, And we sometimes become tired just by looking at the number of possible solutions available to those problems. For example, when we go to a grocery store to buy detergent and we face a challenging number of choices there! Here is short list of some of these brand:

Ariel    Arm & Hammer   Cheer    Clorox   Daz   Downy   Dreft    EcoverGain (detergent)   Omo   OxiClean   
Persil  Purex    Radion   Rinso    Seventh  Generation Inc.   Sunlight   Surf   Tide

Similarly, when we need to buy stocks, house, a holiday tour ticket, medicine, or insurance for our family, we face similar kind of dilemma. What we do then? How do we solve these problems? Do we generally go for expert advice in the respective fields. Yes? 

There are plenty of other situations too where we prefer advice of an expert, like: before going to a movie, or deciding which college to choose from the given list of options, or which person to marry! There are uncountable number of such examples, you name it and thousands of experts out there to help you! 

Why do we go for advices from these so called experts? May be because; "What we think is generally right for us, might not be that right after all" or "An expert is best person to tell what is right for us!". 

Let me tell you a fact: "There are approximately 70,000 economists there in United States, to forecast the recessions and depressions. But if they had been doing this job of forecasting successfully for at least two years in a row, they would all be billionaire!" Then it isn't so?

Let me tell you; many times asking question "Why" is the part of the solution. If we simply ask "Why" whenever we face challenging choices in our life, we would get most of the answers by our own! The question "Why' is the fundamental question of our basic reasoning skills. It is the basis of scientific logic behind why things are explained the way they are. Science is the belief of ignoring the experts. 

Why we need an expert judgment, when we could come up with better answers by our own? I am not saying that we do not need them (experts) at all...for example' we need doctors to advice us which medicine to take when we need it. Rather my point of contention is that , do we always need these experts? Should we go to an expert to decide: "When we need an expert and when we don't!". Should not we reasons ourselves on whether we need an expert at all? 

There are more such Ideas to Ponder upon. Sometimes, we make wrong choices and blame these experts for it, and we end up choosing a different expert next time! Kenneth Lay, former chairman and CEO of Enron was one such expert beside thousands of similar others! 

We feel safe, because we are afraid of making judgement ourselves. We are no different than a herds of sheep, which follows the same path that their first sheep ( a kind of  supposed expert for other sheep) follows, though the first sheep knows nothing on where it is taking all of others with it! The only difference is that, our human experts know very well; when to jump off the boat to save their own asses. But we don't and we end up creating devastating outcomes for ourselves. 

It is third of the many posts that I have written under "Idea to Ponder series" (you can visit all of them here). Stay updated, get updates via email: Click here.

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