Quotes by: Daniel Kahneman
Optimism is normal, but some fortunate people are more optimistic than the rest of us. If you are genetically endowed with an optimistic bias, you hardly need to be told that you are a lucky person - you already feel fortunate.
Economists think about what people ought to do. Psychologists watch what they actually do.
I used to hold a unitary view, in which I proposed that only experienced happiness matters, and that life satisfaction is a fallible estimate of true happiness.
Courage is willingness to take the risk once you know the odds. Optimistic overconfidence means you are taking the risk because you don't know the odds. It's a big difference.
People just hate the idea of losing. Any loss, even a small one, is just so terrible to contemplate that they compensate by buying insurance, including totally absurd policies like air travel.
In essence, the optimistic style involves taking credit for successes but little blame for failures.
After a crisis we tell ourselves we understand why it happened and maintain the illusion that the world is understandable. In fact, we should accept the world is incomprehensible much of the time.
Policy makers, like most people, normally feel that they already know all the psychology and all the sociology they are likely to need for their decisions. I don't think they are right, but that's the way it is.
If people do not know what is going to make them better off or give them pleasure, then the idea that you can trust people to do what will give them pleasure becomes questionable.
When people talk of the economy being strong, they don't seem to feel that they, too, are better off.
We're beautiful devices. The devices work well; we're all experts in what we do. But when the mechanism fails, those failures can tell you a lot about how the mind works.
I would not advise people to buy a car or house without making a list. You will probably improve your intuitions by making a list and then sleeping on it.
People who know math understand what other mortals understand, but other mortals do not understand them. This asymmetry gives them a presumption of superior ability.
You're surprised by something, but you don't really know what surprised you; you recognize someone, but you don't really know what cues cause you to recognize that person.
An investment said to have an 80% chance of success sounds far more attractive than one with a 20% chance of failure. The mind can't easily recognize that they are the same.