Thursday, April 30, 2009

Game Theory: Why the Swine Flu Panic is Good


  1. The comment on television a couple days ago, was the best. A government official in our state said the swine flu thing is a "pandemic", and she went on to describe the outbreak and so forth. She led the viewers to believe they are 'on top of it'.

    Interestingly enough a couple days before, national news said the amount of flu vaccine needed for this outbreak could not be made in the very near future, and it would take time.

    So is the government here to help us? Oh yeah, they had a hurricane in New Orleans, didn't they and the government was right on top of it!


  2. # 10 from a list of how to speak like a lawyer / politician:

    Take several inconsistent positions on every issue so that you can never, ever, be wrong.


  3. But one of the labels is wrong. If panic is induced, but there's no reason for it, "nothing happens" doesn't cover what happens.

    What happens is hundreds of millions of doses of vaccines are procured in a hurry, and administered haphazardly. People are ordered to stay at home for minimum 7 days if they or any of their kids cough twice. The cost to society is enormous.

    There's also a certain story about crying wolf, when none is around, that rise to mind. One harm is that, the more often people hear alarming news that turn into nothing, the more likely they are to ignore it when an actually IMPORTANT warning comes.