Budgets and Biases: Summing Up American Values

The Huffington Post:

Our lawmakers may have averted the fiscal cliff on the first of the year, but the threat of sequestration still looms over the nation. If the Congress and the White House cannot agree on the particulars of deficit reduction by March, draconian across-the-board cuts will slash both national security spending and core domestic programs, ranging from education to public health to environmental protection.

And perhaps psychological judgments as well — or misjudgments, as new research out of Princeton University suggests. Psychological scientists Daniel Ames and Susan Fiske are reporting evidence that our judgments of harm may be badly distorted by deeply-rooted cognitive biases that operate out of our awareness. Specifically, we may be prone to exaggerate damage when we perceive it as deliberate and blameworthy, as opposed to unintended consequences or acts of nature.

Read the whole story: The Huffington Post

Wray Herbert is an author and award-winning journalist who writes two popular blogs for APS, We’re Only Human and Full Frontal Psychology.

See Susan T. Fiske at the 25th APS Annual Convention.

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