Here is a post about conventional wisdom from Paul Krugman.
The piece suggests that closeness to “very serious people” is stifling for the individual mind. I think it is worse than that: being a very serious person is also stifling. There is a particular kind of stupidity exhibited by intelligent and powerful people that comes from a lack of challenge. We cannot constantly re-examine all of our assumptions without outside help. If you are intelligent and powerful then you are unlikely to spend enough time with people who are sufficiently focussed on your area of expertise to have a good understanding and sufficiently unawed by your standing to have your dafter beliefs seriously challenged. And this is especially true of beliefs that are peripheral to your reasons for being a very serious person (hence the spectacle of Nobel laureates talking nonsense outside their own fields).