This is not a headline from “The Onion”

Via elearnspace comes this link/news, “Morality under threat as science debunks our sense of free will.” Isn’t that just swell.

Actually, it seems a little more complicated than that to me. Here’s a passage:

Thirty students answered maths problems on a computer. A feigned technical glitch meant that they had to press the space bar each question to stop the computer from giving the answers away. Crucially, before the test, half the students read a passage from the late Francis Crick’s book about consciousness, in which he argues that free will is an illusion. These students pressed the space bar less often than the students who hadn’t read about free will – in other words, they cheated more.

Okay, but wait– what if the students who read this passage and “cheated” more weren’t so much cheating as they were saying “Oh yeah? I’ll show that Crick dude. I’ll do whatever the hell I want with this and skip the space bar. No free will, my ass!”

One thought on “This is not a headline from “The Onion””

  1. I think you’re assessment is right now. This study doesn’t cover anything about motivation (if it’s even possible to), and makes logical leaps about motivation. Perhaps the issue isn’t free will at all, but stubbornness or cynicism or something else. Then again, I don’t have a lot of regard for psychological studies like these.

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