By Bryan Caplan
Tyler Cowen has been preaching against various intellectual vices. My chairman Don Boudreaux thoughtfully adds the Contrarian Vice to the list:
Being contrarian is admirable because it keeps the mind open and exploring; it’s of a piece with one of the finest of all intellectual dispositions: skepticism.
But even a disposition as admirable as contrarianism has its downside — what I might call “the contrarian vice.” The contrarian vice is to weigh cleverness too heavily against wisdom.
Not all contrarians commit the contrarian vice; Tyler doesn’t.