James Leroy Wilson's blog

Thursday, January 31, 2008

Monty Hall Problems

This is my latest at the Partial Observer. Excerpt:
[E]ven when the answer is explained, people often don't see it because they have developed a perspective, a point of view at odds with the reality.

Here are examples: If more people had guns, there'd be less crime. The country would be more secure if it didn't intervene in foreign conflicts. Welfare programs create more poverty. Legalizing drugs will lead to less crime with no increase in drug addiction. Business regulations hurt workers and consumers more than they help. Employer-provided health coverage is a bad deal for workers. A marketplace where multiple currencies are exchanged will be to the advantage of consumers. Israel would be more secure if the United States cut off aid. There would be greater social harmony if anti-discrimination laws were repealed. Greater federal involvement in education leads to worse educational performance.

For many people, these assertions don't sound like they could be true. What's more significant, however, is people don't want them to be true.