Fooled by Randomness quote

I really like the following quote from Fooled by Randomness (pp. 55-56): “Things are always obvious after the fact… It has to do with the way that our mind handles historical information. When you look at the past, the past will always be deterministic, since only one single observation took place.”

This describes well a common error that is made all too often, by the news media in particular. News reporting often involves studying risky phenomena after the fact; i.e., after a disaster has already occurred. Journalists are highly susceptible to this particular aspect of being fooled by randomness. Often their analysis only makes sense if one had the luxury of perfect foresight.

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