A comment piece from the New York Times, Ideology and Integrity, discussing the importance of ‘intellectual integrity’ in our politicians. Highly relevant in the UK, which goes to the polling booths on Thursday. Here’s an extract:
You see, you shouldn’t care whether a candidate is someone you’d like to have a beer with. Nor should you care about politicians’ sex lives, or even their spending habits unless they involve clear corruption. No, what you should really look for, in a world that keeps throwing nasty surprises at us, is intellectual integrity: the willingness to face facts even if they’re at odds with one’s preconceptions, the willingness to admit mistakes and change course.
What’s especially interesting is the way in which “an open mind, willing[ness] to consider the possibility that parts of the ideology may be wrong” are associated with integrity, and opposed to ideological commitment which renders one unable to change course and admit error.