Now there is an explanation for the common situation where a person fails to see what to others appears to be blindingly obvious.

The Dunning-Kruger effect provides the psychological evidence supporting what most of us see often, and that is that our (and others) incompetence in an area masks our ability to recognise that incompetence. The “we don’t know what we don’t know” effect at work. 

When you think about it, the absence of the skills we need to recognise a right answer when we see it, are the same as the skills required to produce a right answer in the first place. This makes sense when you read it twice.

Our exertions as we consider complex issues, from the future of the financial depredations of the GFC on the economy, to climate change,  what to do about our involvement in Afghanistan, to the personal questions we all face, are all about making decisions today on the basis of our understanding of the  best information we have available, but often misunderstood, misinterpreted, and often misused or ignored.

We therefore most often make those decisions in relative ignorance, seeking easy, saleable “solutions” to problems where we are ignorant, but unaware of it, or unable to concede it.

How scary is that?