Cynicism

June 4, 2007

I am a cynic. A cynic is defined as “one who believes that human conduct is motivated wholly by self-interest”. I’d change the wholly to usually, but otherwise this is what I believe. It’s similar to the economic idea that most people usually make rational (i.e. selfish) decisions. However, this belief is undermined by behavioral economists and psychologists who’ve demonstrated that people often make decisions that act against their declared self-interest. So maybe I’m wrong to be a cynic? Rather than assume people are selfish, I should assume most are stupid. But what term would best describe this view? Probably supercilious.

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One Response to “Cynicism”

  1. kizkozmoz Says:

    You are cynical. I myself am cynical but I prefer the title “Cynical Optimist”. The cynic concludes or predisposes himself to the perception filter that humans are basically in error morally and intellectually. He sees human nature as as a rather ‘anti-life’instinct or pattern of behavior. The optimist believes that contrary to evidence, things will turn out OK and if examined in minute detail will reveal that themselves as potent and wonderful. So as a cynical optimist, I believe that the very warp and woof of reality that led to such miserable creatures as ourselves, is basically a system that works. It will see us through to where we may one day stifle our penchant for rubbing ourselves out and taking the planet with us. I am a bit of a technophile so I think that once we get technology to a point where we can begin realizing many of our dreams we will through off the yokes of politics and religion that has drug us down these many eons.


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