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Sunday, January 30, 2011
normalcy bias definition
1. (sociology) The phenomenon of disbelieving one's situation when faced with grave and imminent danger and/or catastrophe. As in overfocusing on the actual phenomenon instead of taking evasive action, a state of paralysis.
As human beings, we function best believing that the days we have experienced and the range of our experiences are normal, and therefore our lives will continue to exist and move within what we believe are those continued normal parameters. Even when something strikes us as wrong, we tend to revert to our continued practiced paths because of normalcy bias.
Many times, those who are kidnapped, rather than seeing the opportunities to avoid being taken, or choosing to fight in place, can't completely BELIEVE that we are in the situation in which they find themselves, and they fail to act properly, thinking instead that they "will find a way out later". Unfortunately, statistically very few kidnap victims, once being relocated from the place they were taken, ever do. This is an extreme example, but I am using it to illustrate the concept of how normalcy bias can be damaging to decision-making.
Those of us who lost children especially suddenly, also were stuck in normalcy bias, and in some ways it benefitted us,in getting through those first days and functioning through a funeral etc. I am discussing this now because I don't want normalcy bias to adversely affect your choices, your actions and your lives now.
Our government has borrowed enough money that if every man, woman and child relinquished our assets to our government, that we still could not pay off this debt. Our federal reserve continues to dabble in a number of questionable practices including what amounts to currency fixing, printing money with nothing behind it, called quantitative easing. Our rights and liberties are being progressively eroded. There are a number of states which could conceivably go bankrupt. There are peculiarities in our government and economy which are not unlike "The Great Depression with cellphones". Add to this, potential for terrorism, and several North African and Middle Eastern countries in civil unrest, and we have a recipe for potential disaster here too. It is therefore time to examine the manner in which normalcy bias may be impacting our own daily choices.
If you haven't been, it's time to pay down debt and carry as little of it as you can. It's time to stock some food supplies, some medical supplies, and anticipate inflation, which most of the world's economists say is coming.
I don't know why some of our children were called from us, but I do know, that those of us who are left here, are in for some rocky times. Please take a moment to consider whether normalcy bias is interrupting your ability to see and predict potential hazards in your own life. Daniel would want that.
This young man reminds me a bit of Daniel.