"increasingly, the leagues that control the kinds of sports that are competitive at an international level, like hockey and soccer, are realizing that what's fun for the watching parent is not what creates top-level players, and that's creating a schism between the top and bottom levels of sport. Those young Dutch players spend practice time drilling, not competing. Because they're learning as individuals, not as a team, they don't even necessarily win games…. [K]ids find drilling and learning fun, but adults see games as fun… Any reward the kids feel from play comes from their own, and their coaches', sense of their improvement—not from the scoreboard. It's a different way of considering sport."
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"Leonhardt’s premise is that what the Deepwater Horizon blowout has in common with the global financial crisis is heedlessness of tail-end risk. Black swans, an unwillingness to take seriously the consequences of very low-probability, very high-damage eventualities, and all that. And this is certainly true. As Leonhardt writes, BP executives had never seen an oil rig blow up, so they didn’t really believe it could happen, just as Ben Bernanke didn’t really believe a nationwide real-estate crash could happen.
"But this isn’t the main theme the two events have in common. The main theme they have in common is much simpler than that, and has more moral valence…. The main theme they have in common is regulatory failure. The regulations weren’t strong enough, and the regulators didn’t do their jobs."
"We make two basic — and opposite — types of mistakes. When an event is difficult to imagine, we tend to underestimate its likelihood. This is the proverbial black swan. Most of the people running Deepwater Horizon probably never had a rig explode on them. So they assumed it would not happen, at least not to them….
"On the other hand, when an unlikely event is all too easy to imagine, we often go in the opposite direction and overestimate the odds. After the 9/11 attacks, Americans canceled plane trips and took to the road. There were no terrorist attacks in this country in 2002, yet the additional driving apparently led to an increase in traffic fatalities."