Elites and spending time doing other stuff instead of understanding

From a comment down at the always provocative West Hunter.

"The big decisions in our society are made by fools. Our elites are in general overpromoted and spend far more mental energy keeping power and climbing the ladder than actually understanding what they need to know to make good decisions. At times they are shockingly ignorant of the matters they’re supposed to be experts on. Far, far more often than most people want to admit, they make momentous decisions on the basis of solving immediate political problems, or winning at office politics, or to make themselves feel good. Often they are the captives of their advisors, and their advisors are similarly usually overpromoted and self-interested rather than focused on good decisison. (The polite version of reality says that they’re all hard-working smart people who mean well; the acceptable version says this of your political side but not of the other.)"

I agree. I'd like also to add that even smaller decisions in our society are often made by fools or (at the very best) incompetent fellas. I know how hard it is to get familiar with something complicated, to really (sorta) know something. Where do elites (I'd maybe restrict elites to politicians in this case) find the time and energy to study, reflect, test, take decisions with some thinking behind them (it is perfectly clear that there are people in the shadow doing all the heavy stuff, but are they listened to? Do they have an agenda? How can you know if you don't know squat about it?) when they "spend far more mental energy keeping power and climbing the ladder than actually understanding what they need to know to make good decisions"? And this assumes that they actually have the cognitive power to understand such complicated stuff. Another form belief of mine is that (big) part of the problem with elites stems from the overrepresentation (not representation per se, just over) of lawyers, people coming from the humanities and social sciences among the elites. Some people coming from the hard or harder sciences would do (on average) good.

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