I’ve never been broke, so why keep working?

Matt Ridley’s advice that, as pessimistic predictions rarely eventuate, we should simply relax and let the free market automatically perfect the world (“Why rational optimism beats ephemeral happiness”, The Australian, 22/6) ignores the most plausible possibility: that some disasters never occur precisely because people are so worried about them, and thus take action to avert them. It’s a bit like saying, “I’ve never been broke, so why keep working?”.

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