???Antifragile,??? by Nassim Nicholas Taleb

In Mr. Taleb???s view, ???We have been fragilizing the economy, our health, political life, education, almost everything??? by ???suppressing randomness and volatility,??? much the way that ???systematically preventing forest fires from taking place ???to be safe??? makes the big one much worse.??? In fact, he says, top-down efforts to eliminate volatility (whether in the form of ???neurotically overprotective parents??? or the former Fed chairman Alan Greenspan???s trying to smooth out economic fluctuations by injecting cheap money into the system) end up making things more fragile, not less. Overtreatment of illness or physical problems, he suggests, can lead to medical error, much the way that American support of dictatorial regimes ???for the sake of stability??? abroad can lead to ???chaos after a revolution.???

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