Why We Believe That Unlikely Events Will Happen To Us

Question: Why do people believe in unlikely events, i.e. they will get bitten by a shark, contract an exotic disease, win the lottery or get buried by a volcano?buy viagra in uk

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For a change, I have an answer……………..

Answer: Because we judge the probability of an event by how quickly examples come to our minds, i.e. school shootings, strange diseases, and murder all easily spring into our thoughts. And these events come to our minds because:

1. Strange happenings are reported more often by the media (after all, who wants to read,” Linda got up, made cereal, went to work, worked…” Fascinating, I know, my ordinary day. I also showered and brushed my teeth today and plan to indulge in Korean food tonight. Ah, the excitement of it all…). No one picked up that story.

2. Unlikely events are memorable and often fear inducing – therefore, they stick in our minds.

3. People can be superstitious and try to keep bad events in their minds. They believe that if they forget, they will get slammed but if they remember,

they are safe. This is one reason that does not apply to good things (lotto) only bad things (murder).

The result is that we call these unlikely events up more easily than calling up all the food we ate this year without getting poisoned, all the days in all the schools where it was normally crazy but without shootings, and all the people who have never been injured, let alone murdered.

Remember that Las Vegas advertises the winners, not the (zillions of) losers. The media makes sure that we remember those happy people, so we assume that we can also win, and we then give the casino our money.

People forget the real statistics or probabilities of things happening.


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