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SilasBarta comments on Intellectual Hipsters and Meta-Contrarianism - Less Wrong

148 Post author: Yvain 13 September 2010 09:36PM

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Comment author: SilasBarta 13 September 2010 10:39:05PM 11 points [-]

I have to admit, this has definitely been a hazard for me. As I said to simplicio a few months ago, I've had a sort of tendency to be "too clever" by taking the "clever contrarian" position. This gets to the point where I'm fascinated by those who can write up defenses of ridiculous positions and significantly increase my exposure to them.

I think part of what made me stray from "the path" was a tendency to root for the rhetorical "underdog" and be intrigued -- excessively -- with brilliant arguments that could defend ridiculous positions

I have to wonder if I'm falling into the same trap with my "Most scientists only complain about how hard it is to explain their field because their understanding is so poor to begin with." (i.e., below Level 2, the level at which you can trace out the implications between your field and numerous others in both directions, possibly knowing how to trace back the basis of all specialized knowledge to arbitrary levels)