Sunday, July 12, 2009

In Defense of Failure

All advances that the human race has ever made are the result of trial and error. It is not a blind process; we learn from mistakes and from successes. We pass on knowledge. Our ideas are informed by our own experience and the experience of those who went before. We are smart people, but we are only smart because people have tried things with little or no foreknowledge of the nature of the results. They allowed themselves to fail, and did. But along the way successes appeared, and multiplied and persisted. The failures were thrown out, resurfaced at times and were thrown out again. This is the essence of economic growth. It is the essence of all growth.

If we fear failure, we risk stagnation. We miss the opportunity to expand our knowledge base and improve the standard-of-living. But if we come to hate failure we risk much more. The aversion to failure might not cause us to avoid risk but to dress up failure as a success, to allow bad ideas to persist. This causes us to move backward as it amounts to the destruction of welfare. It locks resources into unproductive pursuits.

1 comment:

Daisy said...

No movement since August! :)
Is everything all right with you down there?
I hope so!

I totally agree with everything that you wrote down in this post. No further comments needed!

You writings are beautiful!
Keep up these amazing writings and keep sharing them with us,