Frost

I imagine that, at the moment of first freezing, the pattern of frost is set.  So should a mutant, winter-dwelling butterfly flap its wings near your windscreen, a different pattern would appear than if it had not.  Dirt and debris on the screen, the micro-climate around the vehicle, the shapes of eddies: they must make for the variety of possibilities.  It’s about turbulence.

In an October interview, Benoit Mandelbrot said this:-

The word turbulence is one which is actually common to physics and to social sciences–to economics. Everything that involves turbulence is enormously more complicated: not just a little bit more complicated, not just one year more schooling; it’s enormously more complicated….

The behaviour of economic phenomena is far more complicated than the behaviour of liquids or gases.”

In the same joint-interview, Nassim Taleb said this:-

Never in the history of the world have we faced so much complexity combined with so much incompetence in understanding its properties….

You may have chain reactions we never imagined before. These come from intricate relationships in a system we don’t understand.”

So I guess we should beware of those who tell us confidently to expect future economic events to follow a familiar pattern.  They tend to be the same people who did not expect the current situation.

Frost

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For those who did not catch the original video, here it is:-

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