The CDC announces plan to send every American household pamphlet on probability thinking

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ATLANTA – Emphasizing that the effort represented the best chance to ensure that Americans make responsible choices about the pandemic, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention announced Thursday that it planned to send each U.S. household a booklet on probability thinking and decision-making. “What we hope to do is give every American a quick refresher on how to use statistical analysis to assess their assumptions and make Bayesian conclusions, thereby ensuring that they overcome their innate psychological assumptions – simple things but important nevertheless, “said the CDC director. Rochelle Walensky, who estimates that the pamphlets’ lessons on the basic error alone would save far more lives than wearing a mask, hand washing and the Covid-19 vaccine combined. “Clearly, most everyone in the nation has already at least skimmed psychologist Danny Kahneman’s landmark studies on the fallibility of human thinking. So the booklet will skip some of the basics like accessibility heuristics and go straight to prospect theory. Hopefully it feels none of this is too condescending. ” Walensky added that if the Americans took an easy lesson from the booklet, she hoped it would be P (H | E) = (P (E | H) * P (H)) / P (E).


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