Category Archives: Critical Thinking

Summary of, “The Scout Mindset: Why Some People See Things Clearly and Others Don’t”

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“Unlike the soldier, a scout’s goal isn’t to defend one side over the other. It’s to go out, survey the territory, and come back with as accurate a map as possible. Regardless of what they hope to be the case, above all, the scout wants to know what’s actually true.” Continue reading Summary of, “The Scout Mindset: Why Some People See Things Clearly and Others Don’t”

Summary of Uscinski’s, “On Conspiracy Theories: A Primer”

© Darrell Arnold Ph.D.– (Reprinted with Permission)

Joseph Uscinski’s Conspiracy Theories: A Primer (Roman & Littlefield, 2019) is a helpful primer, providing, as Uscinski notes in the preface, not a complete picture of conspiracy theories, but a “complete enough picture.” Continue reading Summary of Uscinski’s, “On Conspiracy Theories: A Primer”

The Backfire Effect


© Darrell Arnold Ph.D.– (Reprinted with Permission)

I first heard about the “backfire effect” in a work by Michael Shermer, Why People Believe Weird Things: Pseudoscience, Superstition, and Other Confusions of Our Time. (Richard Thaler and Cass Sunstein (the authors of the New York Times bestseller, Nudge: Improving Decisions About Health, Wealth, and Happiness) have also referred to it in various contexts.) Continue reading The Backfire Effect