Monday, July 02, 2012

By the Numbers

Speaking of people who value statistical abstractions over particular experience, I think the pattern-recognition software in Jesse Bering's brain has gone a bit haywire. In his newest post, which reminded me of an equally strange one last year, face-value expressions of piety and their minuscule statistical significance are somehow paramount when choosing a cab driver (or hypothetical mate). Leaving aside his apparent conviction that fear of punishment seems to be the driving force in ethical choices, he seems to think that trust and love are sentiments we feel for social groups rather than individuals.