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Should we judge pundits based on their demonstrated willingness to learn from their mistakes?

Palko writes:

Track records matter. Like it or not, unless you’re actually working with the numbers, you have to rely to some degree on the credibility of the analysts you’re reading. Three of the best ways to build credibility are:

1. Be right a lot.

2. When you’re wrong, admit it and seriously examine where you went off track, then…

3. Correct those mistakes.

I [Palko] hve been hard on Nate Silver in the past, but after a bad start in 2016, he did a lot to earn our trust. By the time we got to the general election, I’d pretty much give him straight A’s. By comparison, there were plenty of analysts who got straight F’s, and a lot of them are playing a prominent role in the discussion this time around. . . .

This seems like good advice from Palko. The difficulty is in applying it. With the exception of the admirable Nate Silver (no, Nate’s not perfect; nobody is; like Bill James he sometimes has fallen into the trap of falling in love with his own voice and making overly-strong pronouncements; sometimes he just mouths off about things he knows nothing about; but, hey, so do we all: overall Nate is sane and self-correcting, even if recently he’s been less than open about recognizing where his work has problems, perhaps not realizing that everyone’s work has problems and there’s no shame in admitting and correction them), I don’t know that there are any pundits who regularly assess their past errors.

Palko picks on NYT political analyst Nate Cohn, but really he could name just about anyone who writes regularly on politics who’s ever published an error. It’s not like Gregg Easterbrook is any better. So I’m not quite sure what can possibly be done here.

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