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People write to me about their personal experience, and about their examples, and where they disagree, and their nuances. And to the extent you believe I didn't shrink the lines, which I didn't, I've proven to you that your eyes were deceiving you. If I cover the rest of the cube, you can see that they are identical.
And even being here — I mean, the last few days, I've known heights of obsessive behavior I never thought about. If I asked you what's longer, the vertical line on the table on the left, or the horizontal line on the table on the right, which one seems longer? But the nice thing about visual illusion is we can easily demonstrate mistakes. Now, the interesting thing about this is when I take the lines away, it's as if you haven't learned anything in the last minute. If you don't believe me, you can get the slide later and do some arts and crafts and see that they're identical. We have a huge part of our brain dedicated to vision — bigger than dedicated to anything else.
When you walk into the DMV, the person who designed the form will have a huge influence on what you'll end up doing. All these medications, nothing seems to be working. " So the patient is on a path to have his hip replaced. I'll give you a couple of more examples on irrational decision-making.
Now, it's also very hard to intuit these results. How many of you believe that if you went to renew your license tomorrow, and you went to the DMV, and you encountered one of these forms, that it would actually change your own behavior? We can say, "Oh, these funny Europeans, of course it would influence them." But when it comes to us, we have such a feeling that we're in the driver's seat, such a feeling that we're in control and we are making the decision, that it's very hard to even accept the idea that we actually have an illusion of making a decision, rather than an actual decision. And it's so complex that we don't know what to do. And they said, "Would this effect also happens to experts? So you refer the patient for hip replacement therapy. Then they said to half of the physicians, "Yesterday, you reviewed the patient's case, and you realized that you forgot to try one medication. Imagine I give you a choice: Do you want to go for a weekend to Rome, all expenses paid — hotel, transportation, food, a continental breakfast, everything — or a weekend in Paris?
You see, the Netherlands is kind of the biggest of the small group.
It turns out that they got to 28 percent after mailing every household in the country a letter, begging people to join this organ donation program.
But whatever the countries on the right are doing, they're doing a much better job than begging. Turns out the secret has to do with a form at the DMV. The countries on the left have a form at the DMV that looks something like this.
"Check the box below if you want to participate in the organ donor program." And what happens? The countries on the right, the ones that give a lot, have a slightly different form.
It says, "Check the box below if you don't want to participate ..." Interestingly enough, when people get this, they again don't check, but now they join. You know, we wake up in the morning and we feel we make decisions.
Now, you might say, "These are decisions we don't care about." In fact, by definition, these are decisions about something that will happen to us after we die. And because we have no idea what to do, we just pick whatever it was that was chosen for us. People who are well-paid, experts in their decisions, and who make a lot of them? Now, weekend in Paris, weekend in Rome — these are different things.
How could we care about something less than about something that happens after we die? They have different food, different culture, different art.