You Are Not So Smart

You Are Not So Smart

You Are Not So Smart is a show about psychology that celebrates science and self delusion. In each episode, we explore what we've learned so far about reasoning, biases, judgments, and decision-making. read less

Our Editor's Take

You Are Not So Smart is a podcast that explores why people make bad decisions. The host of the show is David McRaney. He is the author of several books on biases and reasoning. McRaney also serves on the executive board of the School of Thought, which promotes critical thinking and reason.

The podcast explores how terrible humans are at making decisions. What's worse, they think they're great at it. The world is full of examples of the consequences of poor choices. People vote for the candidate who doesn't serve their interests. They fall victim to scams and end up sick or penniless. They believe in conspiracies despite vast evidence to the contrary. They stay in unhealthy relationships.

In making the You Are Not So Smart podcast, McRaney wants to understand why this happens. What factors lead to poor decisions? To analyze each factor, he interviews experts who explain. For people to get affected by scams, there have to be scammers. Matthew Hongoltz-Hetling is the author of If It Sounds Like a Quack... In the book, he explores the motivations of snake oil salespeople. Sedona Chinn studies how people manage competing information about health and science. She discovered an inverse relationship between "doing one's research" and doing research.

McRaney also likes to use the podcast to give listeners hope. He talks to Michael Taft about what can make a person change their mind. He also coaches listeners on having difficult conversations with people they disagree with.

You Are Not So Smart is a great listen for people who believe in reason and healthy skepticism. The podcast might also be a good resource for those trying to get loved ones out of a conspiracy loop.

read less