Tuesday, April 6, 2010

My Cynical View On Today's Society

Dilbert Comic:

Catbert: We'll start ten mutual funds, each with randomly chosen stocks.

Later we'll build our advertisements around whichever one does the best purely by chance.

My goal is to be the premier provider of imaginary expertise.

Naivete in our society is very well portrayed in this caption. It exposes the fact that most people have little or no concept of how to properly account for causality. In this case, many are led to believe the success of the fund has much to do with the manager's financial ingenuity. But is it genuine skill and know-how or merely luck and serendipity? Much how many of us might assume a fit person to be an expert on fitness, perhaps we might just as well assume a monkey that "chose" the best performing stock of the year to be a genius?

Analogize with other things of your choosing.....

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