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Factfulness: Ten Reasons We're Wrong About the World – and Why Things Are Better Than You Think Factfulness: Ten Reasons We're Wrong About the World – and Why Things Are Better Than You Think by Hans Rosling
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Factfulness Quotes Showing 1-30 of 464
“There’s no room for facts when our minds are occupied by fear.”
Hans Rosling, Factfulness: Ten Reasons We're Wrong About The World - And Why Things Are Better Than You Think
“People often call me an optimist, because I show them the enormous progress they didn't know about. That makes me angry. I'm not an optimist. That makes me sound naive. I'm a very serious “possibilist”. That’s something I made up. It means someone who neither hopes without reason, nor fears without reason, someone who constantly resists the overdramatic worldview. As a possibilist, I see all this progress, and it fills me with conviction and hope that further progress is possible. This is not optimistic. It is having a clear and reasonable idea about how things are. It is having a worldview that is constructive and useful.”
Hans Rosling, Factfulness: Ten Reasons We're Wrong About the World – and Why Things Are Better Than You Think
“Forming your worldview by relying on the media would be like forming your view about me by looking only at a picture of my foot.”
Hans Rosling, Factfulness: Ten Reasons We're Wrong About the World—and Why Things Are Better Than You Think
“The world cannot be understood without numbers. But the world cannot be understood with numbers alone.”
Hans Rosling, Factfulness: Ten Reasons We're Wrong About the World—and Why Things Are Better Than You Think
“I want people, when they realize they have been wrong about the world, to feel not embarrassment, but that childlike sense of wonder, inspiration, and curiosity that I remember from the circus, and that I still get every time I discover I have been wrong: “Wow, how is that even possible?”
Hans Rosling, Factfulness: Ten Reasons We're Wrong About the World—and Why Things Are Better Than You Think
“human beings have a strong dramatic instinct toward binary thinking, a basic urge to divide things into two distinct groups, with nothing but an empty gap in between. We love to dichotomize. Good versus bad. Heroes versus villains. My country versus the rest. Dividing the world into two distinct sides is simple and intuitive, and also dramatic because it implies conflict, and we do it without thinking, all the time.”
Hans Rosling, Factfulness: Ten Reasons We're Wrong About the World – and Why Things Are Better Than You Think
“here’s the paradox: the image of a dangerous world has never been broadcast more effectively than it is now, while the world has never been less violent and more safe.”
Hans Rosling, Factfulness: Ten Reasons We're Wrong About the World—and Why Things Are Better Than You Think
“Remember: things can be bad, and getting better.”
Hans Rosling, Factfulness: Ten Reasons We're Wrong About the World—and Why Things Are Better Than You Think
“Look for systems, not heroes.”
Hans Rosling, Factfulness: Ten Reasons We're Wrong About the World—and Why Things Are Better Than You Think
“The macho values that are found today in many Asian and African countries, these are not Asian values, or African values. They are not Muslim values. They are not Eastern values. They are patriarchal values like those found in Sweden only 60 years ago, and with social and economic progress they will vanish, just as they did in Sweden. They are not unchangeable.”
Hans Rosling, Factfulness: Ten Reasons We're Wrong About The World - And Why Things Are Better Than You Think
“Look for causes, not villains.”
Hans Rosling, Factfulness: Ten Reasons We're Wrong About the World—and Why Things Are Better Than You Think
“There was a balance. It wasn’t because humans lived in balance with nature. Humans died in balance with nature.”
Hans Rosling, Factfulness: Ten Reasons We're Wrong About The World - And Why Things Are Better Than You Think
“Being intelligent—being good with numbers, or being well educated, or even winning a Nobel Prize—is not a shortcut to global factual knowledge. Experts are experts only within their field.”
Hans Rosling, Factfulness: Ten Reasons We're Wrong About the World—and Why Things Are Better Than You Think
“Every group of people I ask thinks the world is more frightening, more violent, and more hopeless—in short, more dramatic—than it really is.”
Hans Rosling, Factfulness: Ten Reasons We're Wrong About the World—and Why Things Are Better Than You Think
“Think about the world. War, violence, natural disasters, man-made disasters, corruption. Things are bad, and it feels like they are getting worse, right? The rich are getting richer and the poor are getting poorer; and the number of poor just keeps increasing; and we will soon run out of resources unless we do something drastic. At least that’s the picture that most Westerners see in the media and carry around in their heads. I call it the overdramatic worldview. It’s stressful and misleading. In fact, the vast majority of the world’s population lives somewhere in the middle of the income scale. Perhaps they are not what we think of as middle class, but they are not living in extreme poverty. Their girls go to school, their children get vaccinated, they live in two-child families, and they want to go abroad on holiday, not as refugees. Step-by-step, year-by-year, the world is improving. Not on every single measure every single year, but as a rule. Though the world faces huge challenges, we have made tremendous progress. This is the fact-based worldview.”
Hans Rosling, Factfulness: Ten Reasons We're Wrong About the World—and Why Things Are Better Than You Think
“You should not expect the media to provide you with a fact-based worldview any more than you would think it reasonable to use a set of holiday snaps of Berlin as your GPS system to help you navigate around the city.”
Hans Rosling, Factfulness: Ten Reasons We're Wrong About the World—and Why Things Are Better Than You Think
“When things are getting better we often don’t hear about them. This gives us a systematically too-negative impression of the world around us, which is very stressful.”
Hans Rosling, Factfulness: Ten Reasons We're Wrong About the World—and Why Things Are Better Than You Think
“The goal of higher income is not just bigger piles of money. The goal of longer lives is not just extra time. The ultimate goal is to have the freedom to do what we want”
Hans Rosling, Factfulness: Ten Reasons We're Wrong About The World - And Why Things Are Better Than You Think
“Factfulness is … recognizing that a single perspective can limit your imagination, and remembering that it is better to look at problems from many angles to get a more accurate understanding and find practical solutions. To control the single perspective instinct, get a toolbox, not a hammer. • Test your ideas. Don’t only collect examples that show how excellent your favorite ideas are. Have people who disagree with you test your ideas and find their weaknesses. • Limited expertise. Don’t claim expertise beyond your field: be humble about what you don’t know. Be aware too of the limits of the expertise of others. • Hammers and nails. If you are good with a tool, you may want to use it too often. If you have analyzed a problem in depth, you can end up exaggerating the importance of that problem or of your solution. Remember that no one tool is good for everything. If your favorite idea is a hammer, look for colleagues with screwdrivers, wrenches, and tape measures. Be open to ideas from other fields. • Numbers, but not only numbers. The world cannot be understood without numbers, and it cannot be understood with numbers alone. Love numbers for what they tell you about real lives. • Beware of simple ideas and simple solutions. History is full of visionaries who used simple utopian visions to justify terrible actions. Welcome complexity. Combine ideas. Compromise.”
Hans Rosling, Factfulness: Ten Reasons We're Wrong About The World - And Why Things Are Better Than You Think
“The only proven method for curbing population growth is to eradicate extreme poverty”
Hans Rosling, Factfulness: Ten Reasons We're Wrong About the World—and Why Things Are Better Than You Think
“Cultures, nations, religions, and people are not rocks. They are in constant transformation.”
Hans Rosling, Factfulness: Ten Reasons We're Wrong About the World—and Why Things Are Better Than You Think
“Never leave a number all by itself. Never believe that one number on its own can be meaningful. If you are offered one number, always ask for at least one more. Something to compare it with.”
Hans Rosling, Factfulness: Ten Reasons We're Wrong About the World – and Why Things Are Better Than You Think
“This is data as you have never known it: it is data as therapy. It is understanding as a source of mental peace. Because the world is not as dramatic as it seems. Factfulness, like a healthy diet and regular exercise, can and should become part of your daily life. Start to practice it, and you will be able to replace your overdramatic worldview with a worldview based on facts. You will be able to get the world right without learning it by heart. You will make better decisions, stay alert to real dangers and possibilities, and avoid being constantly stressed about the wrong things.”
Hans Rosling, Factfulness: Ten Reasons We're Wrong About the World—and Why Things Are Better Than You Think
“Something frightening poses a perceived risk. Something dangerous poses a real risk.”
Hans Rosling, Factfulness: Ten Reasons We're Wrong About the World – and Why Things Are Better Than You Think
“The Single Perspective Instinct We find simple ideas very attractive. We enjoy that moment of insight, we enjoy feeling we really understand or know something. And it is easy to take off down a slippery slope, from one attention-grabbing simple idea to a feeling that this idea beautifully explains, or is the beautiful solution for, lots of other things. The world becomes simple. All problems have a single cause—something we must always be completely against. Or all problems have a single solution—something we must always be for. Everything is simple. There’s just one small issue. We completely misunderstand the world. I call this preference for single causes and single solutions the single perspective instinct. For example, the simple and beautiful idea of the free market can lead to the simplistic idea that all problems have a single cause—government interference—which we must always oppose; and that the solution to all problems is to liberate market forces by reducing taxes and removing regulations, which we must always support. Alternatively, the simple and beautiful idea of equality can lead to the simplistic idea that all problems are caused by inequality, which we should always oppose; and that the solution to all problems is redistribution of resources, which we should always support.”
Hans Rosling, Factfulness: Ten Reasons We're Wrong About the World—and Why Things Are Better Than You Think
“We like to believe that things happen because someone wanted them to, that individuals have power and agency: otherwise, the world feels unpredictable, confusing, and frightening.”
Hans Rosling, Factfulness: Ten Reasons We're Wrong About the World – and Why Things Are Better Than You Think
“And thanks to increasing press freedom and improving technology, we hear more, about more disasters, than ever before. When Europeans slaughtered indigenous peoples across America a few centuries ago, it didn’t make the news back in the old world. When central planning resulted in mass famine in rural China, millions starved to death while the youngsters in Europe waving communist red flags knew nothing about it. When in the past whole species or ecosystems were destroyed, no one realized or even cared. Alongside all the other improvements, our surveillance of suffering has improved tremendously. This improved reporting is itself a sign of human progress, but it creates the impression of the exact opposite.”
Hans Rosling, Factfulness: Ten Reasons We're Wrong About The World - And Why Things Are Better Than You Think
“When someone threatens you with a machete, never turn your back. Stand still. Look him straight in the eye and ask him what the problem is.”
Hans Rosling, Factfulness: Ten Reasons We're Wrong About The World - And Why Things Are Better Than You Think
“Last year, 4.2 million babies died. That is the most recent number reported by UNICEF of deaths before the age of one, worldwide. We often see lonely and emotionally charged numbers like this in the news or in the materials of activist groups or organizations. They produce a reaction. Who can even imagine 4.2 million dead babies? It is so terrible, and even worse when we know that almost all died from easily preventable diseases. And how can anyone argue that 4.2 million is anything other than a huge number? You might think that nobody would even try to argue that, but you would be wrong. That is exactly why I mentioned this number. Because it is not huge: it is beautifully small. If we even start to think about how tragic each of these deaths is for the parents who had waited for their newborn to smile, and walk, and play, and instead had to bury their baby, then this number could keep us crying for a long time. But who would be helped by these tears? Instead let’s think clearly about human suffering. The number 4.2 million is for 2016. The year before, the number was 4.4 million. The year before that, it was 4.5 million. Back in 1950, it was 14.4 million. That’s almost 10 million more dead babies per year, compared with today. Suddenly this terrible number starts to look smaller. In fact the number has never been lower.”
Hans Rosling, Factfulness: Ten Reasons We're Wrong About The World - And Why Things Are Better Than You Think
“No,” said a third student. “Novartis is a public company. It’s not the boss or the board who decides. It’s the shareholders. If the board changes its priorities the shareholders will just elect a new board.” “That’s right,” I said. “It’s the shareholders who want this company to spend their money on researching rich people’s illnesses. That’s how they get a good return on their shares.” So there’s nothing wrong with the employees, the boss, or the board, then. “Now, the question is”—I looked at the student who had first suggested the face punching—“who owns the shares in these big pharmaceutical companies?” “Well, it’s the rich.” He shrugged. “No. It’s actually interesting because pharmaceutical shares are very stable. When the stock market goes up and down, or oil prices go up and down, pharma shares keep giving a pretty steady return. Many other kinds of companies’ shares follow the economy—they do better or worse as people go on spending sprees or cut back—but the cancer patients always need treatment. So who owns the shares in these stable companies?” My young audience looked back at me, their faces like one big question mark. “It’s retirement funds.” Silence. “So maybe I don’t have to do any punching, because I will not meet the shareholders. But you will. This weekend, go visit your grandma and punch her in the face. If you feel you need someone to blame and punish, it’s the seniors and their greedy need for stable stocks.”
Hans Rosling, Factfulness: Ten Reasons We're Wrong About the World—and Why Things Are Better Than You Think

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