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The basic laws of human stupidity [Carlo M Cipolla] on *FREE* shipping on qualifying offers. Non-stupid people always underestimate the damaging power of Professor Carlo M Cipolla taught at several universities in Italy, and for. In , the University of California, Berkeley, published an essay that Carlo M. Cipolla, a professor of economic history wrote, which outlines.

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All this suggests some reflection on the performance of societies. But moving up the social ladder I found that the same cipopla was prevalent among the white-collar employees and among the students. He was born in Paviawhere he got his academic degree in Countries moving uphill have an inevitable percentage of stupid people, yes.

Archived from the original on February 16, Cipolla August 15, — September 5, was an Italian economic historian.

These people may very possibly be too considered to tell me the truth. July Learn how and when to remove this template message.

The probability that a certain person be stupid is independent of any other characteristic of that person. Cipolla further refines his definition of “bandits” and “naive people” by noting that members of these groups can either add to or detract from the general welfare, depending on the relative gains or losses that they cause themselves and society.

Always and inevitably everyone underestimates the number of stupid individuals in circulation. As is evident from the third law, Cipolla identifies two factors to consider when exploring human behaviour:. At first, the statement sounds trivial, vague and horribly ungenerous. It’s impossible to determine a percentage, since any number is too small.


Unfortunately the individuals entitled to a position in the B 1 area are not very numerous.

There are four types of people depending on their behavior in a transaction: Whether the Second Basic Law is liked cipollla not, however, its implications are frightening: Livraghi Corollary to the First Law of Cipolla. It is also quite clear that, depending on their location in this system people will have greater or lesser degree of stupidity, intelligence, banditry, etc.

Prof. Cipolla’s theory on stupidity

Show 25 25 50 All. We also recollect cases in which a fellow took an action which resulted in his loss and our gain: When most of a society is stupid, then the prevalence of idiots becomes dominant and incurable.

This idea was hard to accept and digest but too many experimental results proved its fundamental veracity. Threads collapsed expanded unthreaded. In the basic graph the perfect bandits would appear on a degree cipllla line that divides the area B into two perfectly symmetrical sub-areas line OM of figure 2.

They are akin to laws of nature — a seemingly basic characteristic of the universe. If someone kills you in order to rob you of fifty pounds or if he murders you in order to spend a weekend with your wife at Monte Carlo, we can be sure that he is not a perfect bandit. Cipolla also notes that intelligent people generally know they are, the bandits are also conscious of their attitude and also the unfortunate people have a strong suspicion that not everything goes the right way.


We can recollect cases in which a fellow took an action by which both parties gained: The Fifth Basic Law states that:. In this regard, Nature seems indeed to have outdone herself.

cippolla A full understanding of the Fifth Basic Law is essential to the analysis. Graphically, this idea is represented by a line of slope -1, which bisects the second and fourth quadrants and intersects the y-axis at the origin.

The definitive essay on the subject is younger. Cipolla wrote out the laws in plain language.


Cipolla obtained his first teaching post in economic history in Catania at the age of Through stupiditg and millennia, in public as in private life, countless individuals have failed to take cipollz of the Fourth Basic Law and the failure has caused mankind incalculable losses.

Their failure is just another expression of their helplessness. In Cipolla left for the United States as a Fulbright fellow and in became a visiting professor at the University of California, Berkeley.