Like I said it's a trend, it's not instant. We won't instantly die out the second we make one mistake. Fortuitous circumstances could lead to some mistake actually being beneficial, but this is cherry picking. Taking all the data over all the time then being closer to the truth is beneficial and preferential.
Cherry picking is literally what I am advocating, I am not arguing for a culture of ignorance or to choose ignorance irrespective of context. I am talking about a case by case analysis and measuring the pros/cons of the truth rather than adhering to truth irrespective of circumstance. A useful lie is not all lies, useful ignorance is not all ignorance and all I am doing is providing examples where picking the lie is beneficial. As for the slippery slope argument - what can I say? I would argue that if you are dealing with things on a case by case basis then the slippery slope argument shouldn't apply but maybe you disagree. If we are talking all data of knowledge/understanding versus ignorance then yeah knowledge/understand far superior but do you really not recognise the difference between what I am saying and advocating ignorance? I would say that so far I am talking about reality and you are talking about "if"s and "could"s? I am just pointing out this - if you have a goal other than adherence to the truth and a lie gets you closer to that goal then the lie is more beneficial than the truth. It is a valid argument and your only objection is MAYBE that would lead to a culture of ignorance where we don't care about asteroids or gravity? I really don't understand your argument here, I apologise if I am incorrectly paraphrasing it.
Neither have I. Is it true that someone is ugly though?
Perhaps not but it is could be true that my opinion was that she was ugly and that would be sufficient. I am talking about lies that preserve the dignity and self-esteem of those we speak to, lies that maintain civility and lies based in courtesy and once again you are entitled to your opinion about potential harmful consequences but I think the causality between such lies and pleasant outcomes are observable and worthwhile.
But you would presumably need empirical evidence that this was the case? Or do you simply take people's word for it?
There is a youtube series called Fresh Out: Life after the Penitentiary which I think is really interesting and you do get a lot of ex-cons saying that religion brought their rage to heel. They go on living normal lives and accredit their success to religion and I have no reason to doubt their honesty or judgement. Again it's case by case and while an ex-con accrediting his success to religion sounds viable to me, I wouldn't say the same of someone who was just living a normal life saying "Christianity saved me". I am generally sceptical and I feel that there aren't many situations where I don't require some context before giving my judgement.
We can both agree it is useful to lie to others. But how often is it useful to lie to yourself? And how often is it useful to yourself if someone else lies to you?
I think that lies that are useful to me usually lie in motivation, self-confidence, self-esteem and friendship to list just some benefits of lies by others to me. For example I am a mediocre tennis player by my own standards but when someone tells me that I am amazing of course it makes me feel good. Are there thousands of people in my city alone who would whoop my ass? Am I actually just an average player? Yeah but telling me this will have a different result than telling me I am amazing. I also don't think every time someone tells me the truth that it is an eye opening truth that shreds me of my ignorance, in fact that it rarely the case. I hope that people around me can recognise the difference and offer me constructive criticism knowing that I will take it well but without having to tell me every opinion of theirs fully knowing that it will only cause grief or annoyance.
I have thought extensively about creating lies to yourself that also acknowledge reality while avoiding the negative consequences of your unrealistic view without having to accept the negative consequences of a realistic view. For example one may view himself as tough and take pleasure and pride in it but he creates an unrealistic view of himself and ends up getting hurt as a consequence. This is the essence of your argument as I see it. My view is that if you want to view yourself as tough you need to also create strategies to avoid having to test whether you are tough but without committing yourself to situations in a negative way. People already do this with kindness, they view themselves as "good" and "nice" people without really challenging these ideas or testing them - just the mere thought is sufficient for their conscience. So for example you may come across a group of guys at night time and cross the street, praise yourself for being street smart but also indulge in the idea that you would have been able to put up a fight if you wanted to.
I am trying to be realistic here and not indulge in idealism - humans are fated to be flawed by birth and all we can do is our best. So my ideology isn't that people should become intelligent, worldly and mature - although I would like to promote a culture where these things are celebrated rather than Justin Beiber and reality television. However since creating my preferred master race of people doesn't seem feasible, all I can do is create a way of thinking that allows anyone - regardless of their preferences and values to achieve their goals. If their goals are things I don't like then I hope either the law or social justice will make that kind of behaviour less attractive. Once you adopt a nihilistic perspective you need to justify things in such a way that consequences matter and that to me is one of its best features. Compared to adherence to truth or any other value where consequences are secondary - that in my view is dangerous and stupid.
Again not all goals are equal. And how do we know that not all goals are equal?
That is a great question, why don't you try answering it for me? Show me it how this constitutes as objective evidence.
Objectively I would argue that it is unknown if life is good or not. Subjectively of course life is good (which is good enough for me). Whether life is good or not objectively makes no difference as only life which believes that life is good will likely continue to be life.
So you (somewhat) accept that 'life is good' is just a subjective belief and you also deny that the universe cares which only leaves living creatures left to do the caring. The only thing stopping you from accepting that there is no objective way of judging the actions of others is not all things are known - my view is that if you don't require proven positive claims and you belief proving a negative is necessary to discredit a position then Christianity is an entirely reasonable position and it is at odds with what you say to them. It is hypocrisy.
Rafal your suggestion basically amounts to an autocracy of intellectual elites where politics would destroy the concept of experts giving their honest and impartial opinions. I would much rather have elected negotiators and have a say in the politics than have a ruling elite that dictate to me their opinions attained through majority opinion that may or may not have been acquired by bargaining, bribery and concessions. If the "best" argument always won the day then all intellectuals would agree with each other and this is absolutely false - politicians already are advised by experts.