You’ve heard about him from Tyler, Bryan, and me. Perhaps you’ve seen his posts at overcoming bias. Now you can see Robin Hanson give a brief talk as a keynote speaker.

In the talk, he says that before you attach yourself to other causes, you should attach yourself to his cause of trying to overcome bias–to become a more objective seeker of truth. The logic is this:

If you have a cause, then other people probably disagree with you (if nothing else, they don’t think your cause is as important as you do). When other people disagree with you, they are usually more right than you think they are. So you could be wrong. Before you go and attach yourself to this cause, shouldn’t you try to reduce the chances that you are wrong? Ergo, shouldn’t you work on trying to overcome bias? Therefore, shouldn’t overcoming bias be your number one cause?

Tyler Cowen does not buy this argument. Neither do I. But we could be wrong.