The Americans, the 1980s Cold War spy drama from FX about two Soviet spys living as Americans in suburban Washington, DC, is the best show on television, even if not a lot of people are watching. Of course, what it is really about is life, family, and the intersection of role-play and reality to each. As Emily Nussbaum of The New Yorker explains, it’s “a show about human personality as a cruel performance, even (and sometimes especially) with the people we claim to love. It’s about marriage as much as it is about politics.” In any event, on a recent episode, the FBI agent played by Noah Emmerich is asked about his backstory — three years undercover with white supremacists — by another agent.
“What did it take to fool them?”
“Telling them what they wanted to hear over and over and over again.”
“People love hearing how right they are.”
How right he is.
For further (related) reading:
- Investors’ 10 Most Common Behavioral Biases
- Confirmation Bias: A CFB Twitter Accounting
- Confirmation Bias Illustrated
- Carolina Crazy