Purposeful Summary – Giants19

Free Heroin To Battle Addiction

It seems counterintuitive to provide addicts with the poison that they are using to destroy their minds and their bodies, and in a way is very cruel because these addicts can not reasonably be expected to turn down something that they are so addicted to if it is given to them so easily. However, this is exactly what is happening in certain parts of the world.

This enabling of addiction has started to be seen more and more over the years. It started with what they call “safe injection sites”, which in itself is a very counterintuitive term. These sites provide addicts with a safe place to shoot up heroin under the supervision of a nurse without fear of them being arrested. To nobodies surprise, these sites often times become hangout spots for addicts to get high together.

One of the things that comes to my mind is how hard must it be for somebody who is trying to better themselves and quit a horrible drug that they are addicted to, when their government is doing everything that they can to enable their addiction. Ultimately, it becomes no surprise that cities with these enabling policies have such a high rate of drug addiction and, as a result, homelessness and unemployment.

How To Armor Planes

It seems counterintuitive to armor a plane where it appears one spot took significant damage. This is because of the simple fact that those planes are the ones that made it back. Obviously, the planes that didn’t make it back are the ones that were hit in vulnerable spots. This means that the planes that returned should be armored where they were not hit, rather than where they were hit, because we know that planes can take significant damage in those spots and still survive.

This concept may be difficult for people to wrap their heads around initially, but it makes complete sense, and it is a perfect example of a counterintuitive scenario. I think that a lot can be learned from this story. Sometimes, the best solution to an answer is not the first solution you find. Often times, success is found through thinking outside the box and looking at things from different angles.

This scenario reminds me of a thought experiment. If you have a deadly disease with little hope to live, and you have two options for a doctor to visit. One has a 99% success rate, and the other has a 50% success rate. Initially, you would think to take the more successful doctor. However, what if the reason that the 50% doctors rate is so low is because they are more willing to take on patients that have a very low chance of survival, making that doctor a better fit for you? Another perfect example of how sometimes what seems like a very obvious answer is not the correct answer.

The Marshmallow Test

It seems counterintuitive to sacrifice a larger reward for short term instant gratification, but that is what people do all the time. This concept was tested among children. They were told they could either accept a marshmallow now, or wait five minutes and get another. While this might seem like a silly experiment, it has real life implications.

Right now, you and me know that it is obviously a better investment to wait. That being said, in the moment, instant gratification will almost always be more appealing than a long term reward. I think it is really fascinating when an experiment conducted on children confirms stuff about adults. It goes to show that all humans are kind of similar in some way.

The children who waited and received the long term reward were monitored, and they on average, compared to the children who took the instant gratification, were shown to have better grades, were healthier and were better at staying in relationships. So sure, maybe this was a silly little experiment done to children who had no idea what was going on, but I think it definitely had real world implications and was able to teach us all something about ourselves.

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