by Steve Wagers

This content is part of a series.

A Common Preference for a Common People! (4 of 10)
Series: How to Get along with the Family
Steve N. Wagers
Romans 12:9-13
The Goldberg Institute (2002) calls the cognitive processes that lead to a personal preference among alternatives adaptive thought and decision-making. Knowing the names of the presidential candidates is veridical knowledge. Casting my vote is an adaptive decision. Most human thought and decision-making are adaptive, actor-centered. How do I interpret the facts? Which choice is best for me?
We often use veridical information during the process of making an adaptive decision. For example, we look at a restaurant menu before ordering and note such veridical elements as the cost and composition of items. Cost may be important to the price-conscious and ingredients to the allergic – but the issue of what we should order has no correct or incorrect answer. It's a personal preference based on many factors, and any order is a legitimate decision. Even U.S. Supreme Court decisions are adaptive. After examining the veridical facts of the case and the relevant carefully worded laws and precedents, the judges may adaptively differ 5-4 on which position in the case is constitutionally correct. 1
I was recently introduced to a game called, "Personal Preference". It was created by Play Toy Industries in 1987. The main idea in playing "Personal Preference" is to guess how other players rank four subjects in order of their personal preference. The more accurately you guess, the faster you move around the gameboard to win. The ingenuity of the games' creator was sparked by thinking, from his own personal standpoint, "What can be more interesting than finding out whether my friends prefer turnips or Ronald Reagan?" He said, "The only regret I have about this game is that it went out of print so long ago that Jim Carrey and Hillary Clinton were not topics of preference."
Everyone in this room tonight has their own "personal preferences" when it come ...

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