The Tea Party vs. Conventional Wisdom

Ace has some astute thoughts, thoughts that I agree 100% with:

One thing that galls me — or anyone with Tea Party tendencies — is this uncritical, unchallenged acceptance of Herd Conventional Wisdom simply because the other members of the Herd have decided it’s easiest to just not think about things and default to the Conventional Wisdom.

My sneaking suspicion is that most people who champion the Herd Conventional Wisdom only do so because other members of the Herd have done so; that is, it has become a majority position for no better reason than a majority of people believe it’s the majority position.

This, I think, gets at the heart of the Tea Party’s deep skepticism towards the Establishment or the Conventional Wisdom it embraces: That its positions have largely been adopted for socialreasons — conformity, of course, the paramount social consideration — and not for intellectual, philosophical, economic, or mathematical reasons.

It’s not that the Tea Party doesn’t like thinking or rejects “logic” or is “crazy” or all the other epithets applied to them. It’s that they strongly suspect that the Conventional Wisdom has been adopted, and is being translated into governing philosophy, for not better reason than the fact that is is Conventional. And that few in the leadership class — which really should do a lot more thinking about things if they want credit for thinking about things — ever examine whether the basis for this Conventional Wisdom is firm or infirm.

Here’s the rest.

Abilene Paradox anyone?

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