ARE you intelligent — or rational?

It’s a question that we should ask more of everyone. Research suggests rationality can be improved with training – especially those who seek political power. It’s certainly apparent the human species needs some training in rationality. Intelligence seems to be baked into each of us. There’s not much room to gain IQ points over a lifetime. Ideally, education serves to equalize the difference between large populations of people by providing, among other things, critical thinking and reasoning skills. In the U.S., this project seems to have failed for the most part. Turns out, highly intelligent people are just as susceptible to cognitive bias as the rest of us. Hence the need for rationality.



Superbugs are a problem. Since penicillin was discovered by Alexander Fleming in 1928 the human population enjoyed a respite from many deadly bacterial infections. However, the overuse of antibiotics  gave rise to superbugs that are essentially resistant to all existing antibiotics.  This video provides a very good overview of the problem.

Desolate Spaces

Here’s a good read on the microbial diversity we’ve lost in the West.

Burgers and fries have nearly killed our ancestral microbiome.

It’s a good bet that whoever occupied this humble Spanish abode possessed better microbial diversity than those of us in the West. When you think about it, it’s not really a surprise. Western medicine, Western diets, Western economies, and Western wars….taking their toll on humanity.

The future, well understood

Posting restarted.

I’ve been delving into Philip Tetlock’s work on forecasting.  The book is a must read…once I clear the other must-read’s off my list. In some far off, utopian, parallel universe, leaders make policy decisions based on the mental models used by Tetlock and the “superforecasters.” Of course, we live on earth – inhabited by humans…so it’s a no-go on reason-based decision making.

For those interested in learning more about the forecasting competitions run by Tetlock and team see  and Tetlock’s site.