Study summary, which I’ll chop up further:
They asked residents to say how much they trusted various groups to tell them about a certain environmental risk in an area, and to also evaluate those groups for perceived expertise and how much they had the residents’ interest at heart. In determining trust, how much a person saw a group (e.g. scientists, property developers, friends and family) to have residents’ best interests at heart was three to four times more important than how much expertise that person perceived that group to have.
My reading of this study would be that it isn’t that we live in a ‘post-fact’ political climate. Rather it is that attempts to take facts out of their social context won’t work. For me and my friends it seems incomprehensible to ignore the facts, whether about the science of vaccination, or the law and economics of leaving the EU. But me and my friends do very well from the status quo- the Treasury, the Bar, the University work well for us. We know who these people are, we know how they work, and we trust them because we feel they are working for us, in some wider sense.
Put another one up on the board for “pretending that you’re just being objective blinds you to all the non-objective factors you might find useful to consider.”
Also reminded of my whole facts conflict vs. theories conflict vs. values conflict thing.
If I believe that I don’t share values with someone, my heuristic may be to be skeptical of their facts. In an age of information overload, heuristics are important and inevitable. I am not sent on a panicked Google search every time a Prager U ad makes a shocking claim because I know enough other BS that’s come out of that well that I don’t need to treat it as Likely True.