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Decide and Conquer: The Ultimate Guide for Improving Your Decision Making, Second Edition by Stephen P. Robbins

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3. Why It’s Hard to Be Rational

You’ll never have all the information you need to make a decision. If you did, it would be a foregone conclusion, not a decision.

—Anon

Thousands of people cancelled their air-travel plans following the September 11, 2001, terrorist attack. But was fear of terrorism immediately following 9/11 a rational response? Probably not. A careful review of statistics tells us that, in spite of all the attention given to terrorism by the media, you are 5,882 times more likely to die from medical error than from a terrorist attack. You’re actually 12 times more likely to die from accidental suffocation in bed than from a terrorist attack.1 As these statistics demonstrate, and as you see in this chapter, it’s hard to be rational. ...

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