I have this friend. Now, the thing is, one thing that often annoys me about him? How whenever science finds something that's already obvious to him, he belittles this and wonders why they bothered. They bother because obviousness (or lack of it) is a poor guide to truth.
Seriously, I can't even begin to count the numbers of times common sense have been proven absolutely wrong (but to confound things, it's sometimes right, too, heh). I like cold empiricism because looking at things without assumptions, or attempting to, and prodding at them and attempting to record the results as precisely as possible has historically proven a very useful guide to truth.
I've been taking somewhat of an interest in what is often called the "dismal science": economics. It's clock-full with this sort of things, all sorts of things that only make sense if one drops the preconceptions of ones upbringing and look at how the numbers tend to work out. Lots of very complicated issues. And, now, this is the sort of case I'm talking about
. Ripple effects, unexpected consequences to even benevolent actions. A non-economics example: giving energy food bars to highly starved people and ending up hurting them because they can't handle the sheer amount of calories in their states. Yet another: everyone lending lots of something to a charity, burdening them with the costs of managing particular supplies way in excess of what they need. Like too much X and not enough Y.
I no longer trust good intentions as enough in themselves. I've increasingly come to see careful examination of action-and-consequence as an important, even crucial part of morality. Not that I would consider people evil for simply being mistaken, heh. It takes willful wrongness to earn that,, and I wouldn't toss the word out lightly. But this is why people who stick to rigid closed-mindedness bother and even alarm me: in my eyes, they lack an important part of morality. Evaluation, consideration, then decision.
I'm still trying to work out what I think about this whole economics thing. I've also learned some things from psychology and from anthropology, though I'm still a dabbler at best in all those fields. In many ways, I live to learn.