November 07, 2007
Go Ahead, Rationalize. Monkeys Do It, Too.
10 years ago
Interesting article, but the yellow car analogy was really quite poor. The person who chooses the yellow car gets the crappier car. They chose it because it was neon yellow or something, but we are assured it is the crappier car. The experiments described with the wedding gifts and the M&Ms are completely different. There, people/monkeys are forced to choose between two things they view equally. Once they make this choice, they no longer view the two items equally anymore. I find that to be interesting (though expected), but it is completely different from rationalizing choosing something that is clearly inferior over something that is clearly inferior. So the neon yellow car comparison that bookends the article really serves to weaken it.
I was sure this was going to be about spanking the monkey.
Perhaps I'm missing something, but it seems to me that the amnesiacs experiment wasn't much evidence either. Art appreciation is pretty subjectitive. The fact that they disliked the same painting twice merely shows that they actually disliked the painting.
Maybe it was tame and bland?