Monday, November 12, 2012

Taleb: "The 'Long Peace' is a Statistical Illusion"

From a new Taleb essay in response to the Pinker argument that the world is becoming less violent,

"I was confronted with ideas of 'great moderation,' by people who did not realize that the process was getting fatter and fatter tails (from operational and financial, leverage, complexity, interdependence, etc.), meaning fewer but deeper departures from the mean. The fact that nuclear bombs explode less often that regular shells does not make them safer."
E.O. Wilson says that if ants had nuclear weapons, they would end the world in a week. How long is that in human time? Is that the cause of the Great Filter?

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