Less Wrong is a community blog devoted to refining the art of human rationality. Please visit our About page for more information.
Vaccination is probably one of the hardest topics to have a rational discussion about. I have some reason to believe that the author of http://whyarethingsthisway.com/2014/10/23/the-cdc-and-cargo-cult-science/ is someone interested in looking for the truth, not winning a side - at the very least, I'd like to help him when he says this:
I genuinely don’t want to do Cargo Cult Science so if anybody reading this knows of any citations to studies looking at the long term effects of vaccines and finding them benign or beneficial, please, be sure to post them in the comments.
I'm getting started on reading the actual papers, but I'm hoping this finds someone who's already done the work and wants to go post it on his site, or if not, someone else who's interested in looking through papers with me - I do better at this kind of work with social support.
Recently, Portland Lesswrong played a game that was a perfect trifecta of: difficult mental exercise; fun; and an opportunity to learn about biases and recognize them in yourself and others. We're still perfecting it, and we'd welcome feedback, especially from people who try it.
The Short Version
The game is a combination of Pandemic, a cooperative board game that is cognitively demanding, and the idea of roleplaying cognitive biases. Our favorite way of playing it (so far), everyone selects a bias at random, and then attempts to exaggerate that bias in their arguments and decisions during the game. Everyone attempts to identify the biases in the other players, and, when a bias is guessed, the guessed player selects a new bias and begins again.
View more: Next