I got hoaxed the other day. Thank you, Alun Hill. Like P.T. Barnum, who “…saw nothing wrong in entertainers or vendors using hype (or “humbug,” as he termed it) in promotional material, as long as the public was getting value for money.”, Hill’s humor encourages us to be humble and not go looking after experts. Journalists are not morons; we are all just credulous.
Good news comes in fortunate heaps pummeling our arrogance one blow after another. Alun Hill followed Breitbart’s, et al.’s unwitting propagation of a fallacious story about Paul Krugman‘s finances. Again, it’s not just conservative journalism, but human nature. Matt K. Lewis makes some very thoughtful criticisms of his peers.
The problem is, that people not only are credulous, but that we are predisposed to favor and to follow blindly. There just isn’t enough back-and-forth among smart people before they post their masterpieces for posterity on the internet. People don’t consider three opinions, and then opine like bloviating dictators. Or, work together on a cause instead of seeding their own ego with the same salty fertilizer too many readers like to imbibe. And, readers really like dictators, like Krugman. Or, titillating punditry about dictators, like Kim Jong-un, especially when there is no ready consensus about North Korea or economics. Only sycophants and con artists believe in “THE ANSWER”.