Questions that are rarely asked

This time it’s Robin Hanson’s turn:

…why exactly would learning that
the world is a brutal place make one less interesting in learning more
about that world?  Wouldn’t learning help one to avoid brutality?

That’s in response to Paul Graham, who had written:

We want kids to be innocent so they can
continue to learn. Paradoxical as it sounds, there are some kinds of
knowledge that get in the way of other kinds of knowledge. If you’re
going to learn that the world is a brutal place full of people trying
to take advantage of one another, you’re better off learning it last.
Otherwise you won’t bother learning much more.

Very smart adults often seem unusually innocent, and I don’t think
this is a coincidence. I think they’ve deliberately avoided learning
about certain things. Certainly I do. I used to think I wanted to know
everything. Now I know I don’t.


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