Wise Judgment: Making Complex Decisions (like who to vote for next week)
Posted Oct 29 2008 7:24am
The act of deciding where to put your mark for President is an example of a complex decision filled with heavy emotional and intellectual triggers. Its complexity overwhelms voters with pros and cons, misinformation, deep affiliations, peer pressures, gray areas and politically-motivated advice coming from everywhere.
It is a decision that is so complex many voters place their mark based on the simplest factor that is the easiest to understand (and defend) and aligns with their personal world view. Here are some examples....
I will vote for John McCain because....
- He's Republican (so am I) - His VP is a woman (so am I) - He is war Veteran (we are a country at war) - He will run a bipartisan administration (he has been a political maverick his entire career and I hate partisan politics)
I will vote for Barack Obama because....
- He's a Democrat (so am I) - He is black (so am I) - He says he will change things (I need change) - He is a smooth talker and looks good on TV (that correlates to impressive and competent to me)
People who say it is crazy to decide a U.S. President based primarily on one of these basic factors are ignoring this dynamic - when people are faced with a complex choice, many times they will base their decision on the simplest metric.
Remember this truth the next time you are called to make a complex decision or are trying to get others to make one.
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