Why We Celebrate The Celebrated

Throughout every niche and industry there are celebrities. Icons who dominate their respective field, be it academia, sports, pop-culture, religion or business.

But then comes some presumably logical thinker who challenges the status quo and asks “Why put them on a pedestal? They’re just like everyone else, or at best, less than worthy of the status their given”.

And there is some validity to their claim. We often attribute value to what other people attribute value. (This is known as the Law of Value Attribution).

Yet the truth that we often forget, or even fail to understand is how and why these people gained their stature and prestige in the first place.

Its not easy competing against 7 Billion people. We must assume that we don’t have all the information. We begin to deny the greats of their innate power and discredit their skill in reeplacement for luck or good fortune.

Is Michael Jordan really the best to ever play the game? Did Warren Buffett just get lucky? How good were the Beatles?

However, it is often the quiet champion who is unknown, rather than the celebrity who is overhyped.

An exception to this would be when we have an ulterior motive, something valuable at stake.

Example: Enron. The reason people failed to view things objectively because they chose not to. The balance sheets didn’t make sense, but their personal banking statements did. And as any student of behavioral psychology knows, when its win-lose we’d rather just win the prize and lose our minds.


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