Scientists suggest that reason evolved to win arguments

"But if you believe that after you die you will go to heaven and join the kitten, and you are wrong, you lose nothing."

First of all, that is one handsome bonobo. You could easily put him in a movie where he has to plan Cameron Diaz’s wedding to a mean investment banker and she falls in love with him, only to have her arms twisted out of the sockets when they can’t agree on who gets to eat an orange peel. Anywhom, we’re thinking about chimps/Cameron Diaz because of this New York Times article, in which various scientists claim that human beings developed reasoning to win arguments rather than to discern the truth. Those of you who have exhausted your meager allotment of Times stories can read one of the original scholarly articles. I quote from the abstract:

Our hypothesis is that the function of reasoning is argumentative. It is to devise and evaluate arguments intended to persuade. Reasoning so conceived is adaptive given the exceptional dependence of humans on communication and their vulnerability to misinformation.

Oh shit.

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