Factfulness: Ten Reasons We're Wrong About the World--and

Factfulness: Ten Reasons We're Wrong About the World--and Why Things Are Better Than You Think Previous cover edition for ISBN For alternate cover edition see here FactfulnessThe stress reducing habit of only carrying opinions for which you have strong supporting factsWhen asked simple questions about global trends what percentage of the world s population live in poverty why the world s population is increasing how many girls finish school we systematically get the answers wrong So wrong that a chimpanzee choosing answers at random will consistently outguess teachers, journalists, Nobel laureates, and investment bankersIn Factfulness, Professor of International Health and global TED phenomenon Hans Rosling, together with his two long time collaborators, Anna and Ola, offers a radical new explanation of why this happens They reveal the ten instincts that distort our perspective from our tendency to divide the world into two camps usually some version of us and them to the way we consume media where fear rules to how we perceive progress believing that most things are getting worseOur problem is that we don t know what we don t know, and even our guesses are informed by unconscious and predictable biasesIt turns out that the world, for all its imperfections, is in a much better state than we might think That doesn t mean there aren t real concerns But when we worry about everything all the time instead of embracing a worldview based on facts, we can lose our ability to focus on the things that threaten us mostInspiring and revelatory, filled with lively anecdotes and moving stories, Factfulness is an urgent and essential book that will change the way you see the world and empower you to respond to the crises and opportunities of the future To me, this is the prime example of why the replication crisis is the next big thing and how biased some fields of sciences have already become to culminate in such extremely suspicious examples of Go on, everything s great, here, look at the facts and studies I collected and did to proof what I think is true This thing is really dangerous because it uses instrumentalized science towards a certain consensus, nothingthan hiding an agenda behind manipulated facts out of context, it does To me, this is the prime example of why the replication crisis is the next big thing and how biased some fields of sciences have already become to culminate in such extremely suspicious examples of Go on, everything s great, here, look at the facts and studies I collected and did to proof what I think is true This thing is really dangerous because it uses instrumentalized science towards a certain consensus, nothingthan hiding an agenda behind manipulated facts out of context, it does nearly anything criticized in the debate about the replication crisis good science shouldn t do.It s both my first and possibly last 1 star rating and my farewell from reading anything heavily influenced by politics, economics, statistics, faith, because it destroys the reputation of and trust in science by misusing methods because of egoistic interests The conversation about it has become so toxic and useless that I quite kind wanted to draw a final line, after I had to do the same with many political and economic themes to avoid waste of energy in useless debates, and will focus instead on the true, natural sciences, where nobodys beliefs to have the ultimate solution and is instead modest, self reflecting, open to criticism, and grateful to be part of a line of giants that built the modern world Instead of inventing BS theories to destroy it.Shall people debate, fight, and finally kill over theories that are not proven if they wish, I see muchsense in exploring the wonders of nature and awakening interest in them instead of continuing the debates of narcissistic, egomaniac old man who believed they invented theories of everything Each one of them for themselves, without even recognizing that there can t be so many absolute truths No physicist, mathematician, would ever do something like that because they know that the rules of nature are not fully understood and that they could do research about a theory that could turn out wrong See the difference One of the craziest things about it is that so many facts are ignored and that alternative government and economic models never mentioned, his whole work looks like a status quo advertisement with avoiding any kind of criticism and that he was adored in Davos and similar circles should say the most about what his main fans intended with spreading his words The frightening thing is that onesided propaganda like this has read such a widespread, penetration rate, and overrepresentation in biased mainstream news media and books, that both alternatives and solutions to the real, massive problems are ignored Remember nature destruction, social inequality, developing countries, incarceration rates, the sixth mass extinction, radicalization, opioid crises, climate change, weakening of democracy all over the world, Rosling is driveling about inequality, habitat destruction, climate change, and how huge these problems are while he is exponentiating them by delaying and preventing change and cementing the bad status quo The sad thing is that I am sure that he thought about himself as a good person, that he didn t understand the mechanisms of power that influenced his work, how he was instrumentalized himself He certainly was no bad human because he did work in healthcare in Africa, quite kind of split personality that didn t know and understood that his agenda caused the suffering he tried to reduce The objective worldview he imagined having and spreading is a symptom of that problem It would interest me how people that haven t been born in wealthy nations see this.That poor people in Africa now have 50 to 75 centsper day or that we gave them some drugs and contraceptives after refusing it for decades, that s the big deal Not mentioning why they are poor in the first place included or whyandpeople are poor in the rich, industrialized countries impoverished from the point on Keynesian economics was weakened with the rise of neoliberalism in the 70s Looking at the statistics, the time between WW2 and the beginning of the destruction of welfare state, social justice, functioning democracy, in the 70s, those were the best time for many humans who could earn a living, weren t incarcerated or so indoctrinated that there was even an open debate about those things, not like nowadays where nobody mentions any alternative to the system of self destruction Many were shocked by Friedman and Hayek before they became famous and influential, because their ideas were so sick and inhuman, giving predators license and help against the weaker and poorer ones with the help of the same state they want to be crushed It s as if one has kids and finds it completely ok when the strongest and the smartest kids of the whole school form a kind of oligarchy, control the teachers and principal by lobbying, and grade themselves, while bullyingandbasic, before normal, rights out of the oppressed majority, killing some of them in the process or making their lives so miserable that they can t survive without basic human needs What is still the difference between a dictatorship and neoliberalism except that the goddess god emperor is not such a dishonest lier and openly says what she he thinks and that everyone making problems will be exterminated instead of doing as if she he is a good person But as so often, the stupidest and most destructive ideas are the most successful The character question is especially interesting in this one, because I like to listen to TED talks, etc.during everyday activities and housework and it s amazing how much arrogance and self importance, many seem to see as charisma, can float out of one persons voice This is Ayn Rand always smiling and with friendly fairytale teller style or Officer Barbrady with his trademark Move along people nothing to see here or any government in the history of humanity telling people that they are competent, all is fine, there is nothing to worry, and certainly no problems because all is getting better I m sick of this stuff, it made me quit mass media and news a few years ago, quit friendships with humans who are sadly part of the problem and became ignorant to a level that was unacceptable and dangerous, and meanwhile, it infiltrated so many humanities that I can t even read a few pages without getting confronted with this BS He was a regular speaker at Davos, the world economic forum, anything neoliberal and anti welfare state possible, who do people think benefited the most from his appeasing, condescending drivel and lying with statistics Anyone except for the already rich and mighty Come on, this dude did nice, but he is like Milton Friedman, such a gentle, calm, always smiling, never angry guy, so friendly to his students Humankind, what s wrong with you I would be so interested to see how future history in a few centuries will talk about this era and if they would extrapolate how many people have been killed by this kind of economic policy we are practicing for over half a century now and that is destroying the planet.Sorry folks, this is one of my last rants, I am sick and tired of this and want to focus on true science and great fiction instead, not this disturbed fairytales for adults who never had the chance to built a free opinion because most of the media they consume to stay informed and get educated avoids any criticism of the current economic system.Because of much talk and discussion about the replication crisis with friends and in general, I will add these thoughts to all following nonfiction books dealing with humanities in the future, so you might have already seen it Sorry folks, this is one of my last rants, I am sick and tired of this and want to focus on true science and great fiction instead, not this disturbed fairytales for adults who never had the chance to built a free opinion because most of the media they consume to stay informed and get educated avoids any criticism of the current economic system.Without having read or heard ideas by Chomsky, Monbiot, Klein, Ken Robinson, Monbiot, Peter Singer, William McDonough, Ziegler, Colin Crouch, Jeremy Rifkin, David Graeber, John Perkins, and others, humans will always react to people like me, condemning the manipulation Rosling was practicing with terrifying success, with anger and refusal.These authors don t hide aspects of the truth and describe the real state of the world that should be read instead of epic facepalms like this They don t predict the future and preach the one only, the true way, ignoring anything like black swans, coincidences or the, for each small child logical, fact that nobody knows what will happen, and collect exactly the free available data people such as Rosling wanted to ignore forever.Some words about the publication crisis that even have some positive points at the end so that this whole thing is not that depressing One could call the replication crisis the viral fake news epidemic of many fields of science that was a hidden, chronic disease over decades and centuries and has become extremely widespread during the last years, since the first critics began vaccinating against it, provoking virulent counterarguments I don t know how else this could end than with nothing else than paradigm shifts, discovering many anachronisms, and a better, fact and number based research with many control instances before something of an impact on the social policy gets accepted A few points that led to it I had an intuitive feeling regarding this for years, but the replication crisis proofed that there are too many interconnections of not strictly scientific fields such as economics and politics with many humanities Look, already some of the titles are biased towards apositive or negative attitude, but thinking too optimistic is the same mistake as being too pessimistic, it isn t objective any and one can be instrumentalized without even recognizing it In natural sciences, theoretical physicists, astrophysicists, physicians that were friends of a certain idea will always say that there is the option of change, that a discovery may lead to a new revolution, and that their old work has to be reexamined So in science regarding the real world the specialists are muchopen to change than in some humanities, isn t that strange It would be as if one would say that all humans are representative, similar, that there are no differences But it s not, each time a study is made there are different people, opinions, so many coincidences, and unique happenings that it s impossible to reproduce it Scandinavia vs the normal world The society people live in makes happiness, not theoretical, not definitive concepts One can manipulate so many parameters in those studies that the result can be extremely positive or negative, just depending on what who funds the study and does the study wants as results One could use the studies she he needs to create an optimistic or a pessimistic book and many studies about human nature are redundant, repetitive, or biased towards a certain result, often an optimistic outcome or spectacular, groundbreaking results Do you know who does that too Statistics, economics, politics, and faith I wish I could be a bitoptimistic than realistic, but not hard evidence based stuff is a bit of a no go if it involves practical applications, especially if there is the danger of not working against big problems by doing as if they weren t there A few points that lead away from it 1 Tech2 Nordic model3 Open data, open government 4 Blockchains, cryptocurrencies, quantum computing, to make each financial transaction transparent and traceable.5 Points mentioned in the Wiki article6 It must be horrible for the poor scientists who work in those fields and are now suffering because the founding fathers used theories and concepts that have nothing to do with real science They worked hard to build a career to just find out that the predecessors integrated methods that couldn t work in other systems, let s say an evolving computer program or a machine or a human body or anywhere except in ones imagination They are truly courageous to risk criticism because of the humanities bashing wave that won t end soon As in so many fields, it are a few black sheep who ruin everything for many others and theprogressive a young scientist is, thehe is in danger of getting smashed between a hyper sensible public awareness and the old anachronism shepherds, avoiding anything progressive with the danger of a paradigm shift or even a relativization of the field they dedicated their career to There has to be strict segregation between theories and ideas and applications in real life, so that anything can be researched, but not used to do crazy things.I ll add some replication crisis points in the comments, because there is no space left here 78th book for 2018.I hate TED talks This book is mostly like an extended TED Talk Ipso facto I mostly hated this book.Rosling s central thesis is that in most measures of human development the World is much better than we d think That part of the book I enjoyed, though the data backing this up could have been presented in a far shorter book Rosling spends a lot of time talking about the important people e.g., bankers, Davos, bankers at Davos, TED talks that he s presented this findings too 78th book for 2018.I hate TED talks This book is mostly like an extended TED Talk Ipso facto I mostly hated this book.Rosling s central thesis is that in most measures of human development the World is much better than we d think That part of the book I enjoyed, though the data backing this up could have been presented in a far shorter book Rosling spends a lot of time talking about the important people e.g., bankers, Davos, bankers at Davos, TED talks that he s presented this findings too And he repeats and repeats and repeats his horror that people are so so ignorant not to know basic facts about the World like probable demographic shifts over the next 100 years This is all tedious and doesn t really help He also gives a series of annoying tips about how to read statistics The central problem with his optimistic World view is that it ignores all the declining global environmental indicators This is not a side issue Environmental indicators are declining precisely because the World is developing and consumingandwhich is not to say that most of the damage is done by the most developed It is an impossibility that most people in the World can reach Rosling s Stage 3, let alone Stage 4, with current technologies The World couldn t even survive the World population eating meat at the same rate as people in Europe, the US or Japan, let alone adopting the rest of their lifestyle.I agree entirely with Rosling s point that people will want to reach Stage 4 and have a right to do so , but his sort of glib analysis of how everything is getting better, allows decision makers in the West to continue to ignore this issue and live in the vague hope that a techno fix will arrive just in time I have no doubt this was why Rosling was so popular at Davos 2 stars A very good book, with a very important message about finding facts from data, andimportantly finding the truth in all the information fed to us.This is the a last effort from Hans Rowling, and him long time contributors family It contains real stories and new ways of looking at world data as well as new ways of thinking.The message I really took away from this book is the world is not perfect We have a lot of work to do, but to not forget all we have achieved, to take encouragement fr A very good book, with a very important message about finding facts from data, andimportantly finding the truth in all the information fed to us.This is the a last effort from Hans Rowling, and him long time contributors family It contains real stories and new ways of looking at world data as well as new ways of thinking.The message I really took away from this book is the world is not perfect We have a lot of work to do, but to not forget all we have achieved, to take encouragement from this, to continue to improve Rosling writes about the most important things in the world and does so in an accessible and entertaining style He busts myths using facts This is what non fiction is supposed to be Much of what everybody knows and that we read in the news every day is wrong, because hardly anyone bothers to do reality checking This is a recurring problem in non fiction books, including ones about science So, when finally someone is exposing ignorance, clarifying truth, and exploring logical implications, Rosling writes about the most important things in the world and does so in an accessible and entertaining style He busts myths using facts This is what non fiction is supposed to be Much of what everybody knows and that we read in the news every day is wrong, because hardly anyone bothers to do reality checking This is a recurring problem in non fiction books, including ones about science So, when finally someone is exposing ignorance, clarifying truth, and exploring logical implications, I am going to give him 5 stars Gapminder and this book are great gifts to the world Rosling will be missed Viva facts This is either a very cruel book or a very fair one, and I m not sure which one On the one hand, the author is extremely sharp in that he realizes that bisection of the world is severely crippling to rational thinking process When it becomes us and them , most of our thinking processes will be black and white colored, or rather discolored What we keep missing is that this world is complex and multifaceted enough to fit into no nice and tidy boxes So, understanding that there arethan This is either a very cruel book or a very fair one, and I m not sure which one On the one hand, the author is extremely sharp in that he realizes that bisection of the world is severely crippling to rational thinking process When it becomes us and them , most of our thinking processes will be black and white colored, or rather discolored What we keep missing is that this world is complex and multifaceted enough to fit into no nice and tidy boxes So, understanding that there arethan 2 ways to live andthan 2 types of countries andthan 2 political parties andthan 2 ways to have a prospering state governance and and and is precious And it s hindered by the tribal us them classification.He s also very right about our usage of outdated statistics and our lack of understanding of how data works.He s very wrong about diminishing the role of mass media in development of generations of people who know next to nothing on the scientific way of thought, cannot think for themselves, cannot see neither the big picture nor the small one are gullible i.e my friend writes anything on Facebook and I go on to believe it cannot distinguish between horrible, questionable and reliable sources of info feel free to use your own classification here , i.e Facebooks posts, World Bank data, blog entries, articles from around the web, research of different types and other stuff everything gets lumped in these modern heads and become a congealed mass of truth, lies, wishful thinking, misrepresented info, incomprehensible blabberBasically, people don t know how to use healthy skepticism for the info they are being spoon fed The don t even realize they have this option Some guy or gal with PHD and a bunch of publications supposedly said this and that to some blogger or journalist and this becomes the new evidence of anything hackers, Russian or otherwise, chemical weapons of varied countries, health benefits of anything, freethinking and progressive nature of place your religion persuasion political inclinations here , bloodthirsty and dated and inhuman nature of place your religion persuasion political inclinations here and this becomes the new truth, right until the new information fad comes in vogue I don t get the reason why the author suggests chucking the developing developed countries significators in favor of Levels 1 to 4 Probably I should read way less trash but I immediately had a flashback to Districts in Hunger Games Anyway, why 4 groups Why not 5 Maybe 3 would have been less confusing Or could it be that 10 might have allowed us to explore the shades of human misery and else inrelief Why 4 Also, the author is making a big deal out of the fact that most world s population seems to be living in the middle class To me, the author s description of the middle class Lvls 2 and 3 sounded like something not exactly from Dante s Hell but very close to it Basically, he proves that 6 bln out of our current 7 live in various shades of misery, from abject to hopeful, which is not as ground shaking realization as he might be thinking The difference is that when we think of middle class, we almost never think of it in terms of his Lvls 2 and 3 Our perception is strongly rooted in what he puts in the Lvl 4 bucket So, we are not really always thinking of the middle class, when we are thinking of it, and our perception should behumble and terminologyprecise It s a shame I rarely pick up nonfiction, because I always enjoy it when I do The premise of this one is to debunk common misconceptions people have about the world and explain how a mindset shift toward facts solves a lot of everyday problems It s mostly optimistic, because that s what the facts are saying, but he addresses the woes too The problem is, when asked about important world trends, nearly everyone has the wrong viewpoint Even experts His mission is to examine why this is and hel It s a shame I rarely pick up nonfiction, because I always enjoy it when I do The premise of this one is to debunk common misconceptions people have about the world and explain how a mindset shift toward facts solves a lot of everyday problems It s mostly optimistic, because that s what the facts are saying, but he addresses the woes too The problem is, when asked about important world trends, nearly everyone has the wrong viewpoint Even experts His mission is to examine why this is and help get people out of the funk.I m an analytical guy, so I rarely jump to extremes or find myself enraged by the news But still, when quizzed, I also answered most of the basic fact based questions incorrectly It s a big world out there and so much of the good news isn t dramatic enough to break through the headline stories about plane crashes and murders.Having read this book, I feel like I have a better understanding of the power of small improvements over time and how to filter out the theatrics from the facts He also provides some great resources where you can go if you actually want to look for facts and not narrative.Recommended for sure, but giving 4 stars instead of 5 because around the halfway point I did feel like he began beating a dead horse The examples became too similar and lost their zeal compared to the eye opening punch of the earlier segments Still, it s a well written, short book that made me feeleducated Can t ask for muchthan that Why I am right and everyone is wrong I gave a bunch of really smart people a quiz and they all got it wrong how could they be so dumb The book proceeds in this way The point is taken things are way better than they seem I get it I believe his facts though I dispute some of his rosy conclusions about the world , but I could not get over his condescending cockiness. It is not easy to say anything bad about this book Not because there aren t issues with it there are but because this was Rosling s last passion project that he completed while battling through his final months with pancreatic cancer If you are unmoved by his son s final words, then you are a much stronger person than I am.Mr Rosling is indeed passionate about his work. In the last decades of his life Hans Rosling 1948 2017 made a world wide career lecturing to large corporations, Wall Street bankers, hedge fund managers and gatherings of Nobel laureates and heads of states such as in Davos, about the statistics of the world Rosling s son invented a software so that you could present statistics with moving, shrinking and growing bubbles in different colors, which made an otherwise boring subject highly entertaining The program could even be sold to Google In the last decades of his life Hans Rosling 1948 2017 made a world wide career lecturing to large corporations, Wall Street bankers, hedge fund managers and gatherings of Nobel laureates and heads of states such as in Davos, about the statistics of the world Rosling s son invented a software so that you could present statistics with moving, shrinking and growing bubbles in different colors, which made an otherwise boring subject highly entertaining The program could even be sold to Google.Now, if you want to make a lot of money with people like this, you better tell them what they want to hear, or the invitations may dry up Rosling s message is that everything is getting better Did you know that the number of extremely poor people have halved in the last 20 years Did you know that the majority of the world s population do not live in poor countries but in middle income countries Did you know that 80% of the world s 1 year olds have been vaccinated against some disease Everything is getting better At a slow pace, but it is getting there, so there s no need to worry Unless there is an outbreak of Ebola or some such thing.Rosling is not lying Everybody can check these statistics themselves on the internet But, as it is with statistics, you pick some and leave others out And then there are those less than scientific value judgments What is a middle income country If you look closely, if you makethan 2 dollars a day you are already there, according to Rosling Now, if you are lucky, you might even be able to buy a bicycle and go into town and maybe even get a job in one of the garment factories Imagine that Progress is there That progress is so slow that your generation and the next few ones may not live to see it should be of no concern.Why do the Africans risk their lives as refugees in the middle of all this progress Because the EU won t allow them to come by plane Yes, that is a small part of the answer, but just a very small part and it does not explain why people leave their countries in the first place when there is no war.In the middle of the book Rosling has two honest pages about an African woman who talked to him after one of his lectures She said Rosling was a good talker but he had no vision, which he found unfair Then she said Do you think Africans will settle with getting rid of extreme poverty and be happy living in only ordinary poverty She said his attitude was the same old European attitude Africans had lived with for centuries Now, it honors Rosling that he mentions this, but he did not learn anything from it, obviously On the very next page, as on all the others, he keeps going on as before.The over 1000 year old nordic Edda says One thing I know that never dies the judgment over a dead man.Hans Rosling was born in a working class family He did many great things as a doctor in Africa and India But he should have closed his ears to the siren call of fame and Big Money He became a tranquilizer for the ruling class


About the Author: Hans Rosling

Hans Rosling 1948 2017 was a Swedish physician, academic, statistician, and public speaker.He was the Professor of International Health at Karolinska Institute and was the co founder and chairman of the Gapminder Foundation, which developed the Trendalyzer software He held presentations around the world, including several TED Talks in which he promoted the use of data to explore development issues.


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