alan greenspan on the future

I just listened to an interview with Alan Greenspan, former Chairman of the Board of Governors of the U.S. Federal Reserve, on BBC Radio Four (available to listen again online here). I just want to point out some quotes that interested me, the first regarding societal decisions that seem to echo some of Jared Diamond’s writing, and the second regarding our (in)ability to predict the future

“I think fundamentally societies have to make choices as to whether they want more material well being or more tranquillity. Regrettably I think we cannot have both. … That’s what I believe the evidence very conclusively indicates.”

“All you can basically know is whether probabilities are increasing or decreasing. We have no capability of looking into to the future and knowing for certain that certain things are going to happen.”

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