In a book as entertaining as it is disquieting, Christian Morel looks at some of the worst decisions made in history-big and small-- and shows not only how they came about, but who the players were, and what the thought processes were that led to the final action taken. As Morel sees it, in many cases the action taken is contrary to the objective. His case-studies include:
-The crash of an airplane due to the wrong interpretation of which engine was malfunctioning (United Airlines flight 173 over Portland,ME)
-The explosion of the space-shuttle Challenger due to a known-to-be deficient part
-Two oil-tankers both choosing to head straight into the other and colliding
-Persistent use of illegible transparencies by public speakers
Morel goes on to address the issue of the social tolerance for avoidable catastrophic events stemming from absurd decisions, and how to avoid having a decision-making process turn toward the illogical or absurd.