Quote of the Day
Nothing is perfect. Life is messy. Relationships are complex. Outcomes are uncertain. People are irrational.
It is true that from a behavioral economics perspective we are fallible, easily confused, not that smart, and often irrational. We are more like Homer Simpson than Superman. So from this perspective it is rather depressing. But at the same time there is also a silver lining. There are free lunches!
I have been primarily interested in how and why ordinary people do unusual things, things that seem alien to their natures. Why do good people sometimes act evil? Why do smart people sometimes do dumb or irrational things?
Nothing defines humans better than their willingness to do irrational things in the pursuit of phenomenally unlikely payoffs. This is the principle behind lotteries, dating, and religion.
Superstition is foolish, childish, primitive and irrational - but how much does it cost you to knock on wood?
Strong moral arguments exist for why we should often try to ignore stereotypes or override them. But we shouldn't assume they represent some irrational quirk of the unconscious mind. In fact, they're largely the consequence of the mind's attempt to make a rational decision.
It is by no means an irrational fancy that, in a future existence, we shall look upon what we think our present existence, as a dream.
Edgar Allan Poe
We face a conflict between civilisation and culture, which used to be on the same side. Civilisation means rational reflection, material wellbeing, individual autonomy and ironic self-doubt; culture means a form of life that is customary, collective, passionate, spontaneous, unreflective and irrational.
Fear of serious injury alone cannot justify oppression of free speech and assembly. Men feared witches and burnt women. It is the function of speech to free men from the bondage of irrational fears.
Louis D. Brandeis
For people of color - especially African Americans - the idea that racist cops might frame members of their community is no abstract notion, let alone an exercise in irrational conspiracy theorizing. Rather, it speaks to a social reality about which blacks are acutely aware.
Since all life is futility, then the decision to exist must be the most irrational of all.
Emile M. Cioran
To criticize a person for their race is manifestly irrational and ridiculous, but to criticize their religion, that is a right. That is a freedom.
The irrational in the human has something about it altogether repulsive and terrible, as we see in the maniac, the miser, the drunkard or the ape.
If something is irrational, that means it won't work. It's usually unrealistic.
The fact that logic cannot satisfy us awakens an almost insatiable hunger for the irrational.
A. N. Wilson
Even the most analytical thinkers are predictably irrational; the really smart ones acknowledge and address their irrationalities.
When I was old enough to realize all meat was killed, I saw it as an irrational way of using our power, to take a weaker thing and mutilate it. It was like the way bullies would take control of younger kids in the schoolyard.
There's no evidence whatsoever that men are more rational than women. Both sexes seem to be equally irrational.
You must strive to multiply bread so that it suffices for the tables of mankind, and not rather favor an artificial control of birth, which would be irrational, in order to diminish the number of guests at the banquet of life.
Pope Paul VI
Nine-tenths of tactics are certain, and taught in books: but the irrational tenth is like the kingfisher flashing across the pool, and that is the test of generals.
T. E. Lawrence
Racists are irrational and illogical in their attempts to justify their prejudices.
I see no reason to have my shirts ironed. It's irrational.
Having a child is surely the most beautifully irrational act that two people in love can commit.
What lingers from the parent's individual past, unresolved or incomplete, often becomes part of her or his irrational parenting.
Great art is as irrational as great music. It is mad with its own loveliness.
George Jean Nathan
John F. Kennedy
Martin Luther King, Jr.
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