Though the problem remains, given this cognitive problem, how can one ever be sure that an honest effort is being made to check our own beliefs against facts? Or alternately, to at least form new beliefs out of new facts rather than not allowing our range of beliefs to expand at all.
Of course, the link to The Onion at the bottom of the post is a good follow up as well.
[Edit: The full article from the Boston Globe is well worth reading as well, even if longer at four pages. I especially liked the pessimism expressed at potential solutions:
Nyhan ultimately recommends a supply-side approach. Instead of focusing on citizens and consumers of misinformation, he suggests looking at the sources. If you increase the “reputational costs” of peddling bad info, he suggests, you might discourage people from doing it so often. “So if you go on ‘Meet the Press’ and you get hammered for saying something misleading,” he says, “you’d think twice before you go and do it again.”]
Unfortunately, this shame-based solution may be as implausible as it is sensible. Fast-talking political pundits have ascended to the realm of highly lucrative popular entertainment, while professional fact-checking operations languish in the dungeons of wonkery.