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March 30, 2011

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The nature of the difficulty here may be as explained by Upton Sinclair: "It is difficult to get a man to understand something when his job depends on not understanding it." Or for a corporation, its profits depend. Or for a regulatory agency, its performance reports. Did you see the NYT story about Washington Mutual, the biggest bank failure in US history? Their risk manager took his concerns to the board of directors and the government regulators, so the bank fired him. Not a disaster on the nuclear scale, but if bankers won't take steps to avoid losing $300 billion, shoot the messenger, and still deny all wrong-doing, then that graph may also model the scarcity of greater foresight. I wonder who TEPCO's insurers are, and what they were saying earlier.

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