Over mentale modellen

Mentale modellen uit de speech (en toelichting) van Charlie Munger: The Psychology of Human Misjudgment.

Reward and punishment superresponse tendency

  • A higher commission for a inferior product leads to a dominance of the inferior product.
  • ‘You can leave when it’s finished’-arrangement will cause it to be finished earlier.
  • If you would persuade, appeal te interest and not to reason. 
  • Never, ever, think about something else when you should be thinking about the power of incentives. 
  • Communist: “they pretend to pay us and we pretend to work”
  • Prompt rewards > delayed rewards

Not everything is reward/punishment: the man-with-a-hammer tendency


Man tend to ‘game’ all human systems, often displaying great ingenuity in wrongly serving himself at the expense of others. Anti-gaming features, therefore, constitute a huge and necessary part of almost all system design. 

  • Fear professional advice when it is especially good for the adviser
  • Double check, disbelieve or replace much of what you’re told to the degree that seems appropriate after objective thought.
  • Avoid rewarding people for what can be easily faked. Granny’s Rule: eat your carrots before getting desert // do unpleasant and necessary task first before rewarding yourself with pleasant tasks
  • Punishments work, but not as flexibly and wonderfully as rewards.

Meer quotes over de beloon- en strafneiging.

  • Bad behaviour is intensely habit-forming when it is rewarded
  • “Whose bread I eat, his song I sing”
  • Employers always lose to employees who improperly go for their interest first.
  • Salesforce on commission: probably more efficient, but less moral
  • A employee is subject to incentive-caused bias as he determines what service he will give in exchange for his salary and how much he will yield to peer pressure from many fellow employees who do not desire his creation of any strong performance model.
  • A rich person will often, through habit, work for more money long after he has almost no real need for more. 
  • People will also change their behaviour for companionship, status, sex, friendship and other nonmonetary items.

Liking/loving tendency

  • The ‘child-loving’ behaviour of a mouse can be eliminated by the deletion of a single gene.
  • Current extremes of romantic love almost surely did not accord in man’s remote past. Our early human ancestors were surely more like apes.
  • A liker/lover tend to ignore faults of and comply with wishes of the object of his affection.
  • Distort other facts to facilitate love.

A man will like and love being liked and loved. And so many a courtship competition will be won by a person displaying exceptional devotion, and man will generally starve, livelong, for the affection and approval of many people not related to him.

  • To favor people, products and actions merely associated with the object of his affection
  • People likely to gain extremes of love and admiration boosting each other in a feedback mode.
  • Admiration also causes or intensifies liking or love. 
  • A man who is constructed that he loves admirable persons and ideas with a special intensity has a huge advantage in life.

Doubt-avoidance tendency

  • We are programmed to quickly remove doubt. Often triggered by puzzlement and stress.
  • Force a delay when making a impactful decision. 

Inconsistency-Avoidance tendency

The brain of man conserves programming space by being reluctant to change. 

‘I wear the chains I forged in life”

“An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of the cure”.

  • Influenced by this tendency: conclusion, loyalties, repetitional identity, commitments, accepted role in civilisation’.
  • Harmful in combination with first-conclusion bias.
  • Benefit: people are loyal and dependable. 
  • Even in physics radically new ideas are seldom accepted by the old guard. A new generation is needed. 
  • Train yourself to disconfirm any hypothesis you want to make. 
  • Ben Franklin effect: small unimportant favour causes the person to admire and trust the asker more.

New identity, who dis?

Making a big sacrifice for a new identity will intensify his devotion to the new identity. Cause you don’t want to sacrifice a lot for nothing. So initiation ceremonies intensify commitments. 

It will often prevail after one has merely pretended to have some identity, habits or conclusion. Pretending to have virtue can cause you to have more virtue.

Curiosity Tendency

Is often a remedie to counteract tendency’s that go wrong. 

Kantian Fairness tendency

  • The golden rule.
  • It causes people to voluntarily share equally in unexpected and unearned goods and bad fortune. Much reactive hostility across when ‘fair-sharing’ is expected yet not provided. 

Envy/Jealously tendency

It is not greed that drives the world, but envy. 

  • Is envy/jealously the cause of someone’s argument?
  • Nobody wants to be called envy driven, it is perceived childish, so it became a taboo.

Reciprocation Tendency

  • Antidote for overactive hostility is to train oneself to defer reaction. “you can always tell the man of tomorrow, if it is such a good idea. 
  • Small favours can lead to bigger returned favors. 
  • A small concession will lead increased concession of the other side. 
  • Or present a too risky idea that can be turned down and than give as a concession the idea that you wanted to give.
  • Guilt is averaged out a useful thing. 

Influence-from-mere association tendency

  • Raising prices makes people think the product is of better quality. 
  • With luxury items the effect increases because the buyer often gains extra status by demonstrating their good taste and ability to pay. 
  • Coca cola ads -> happy people. 


  • Examine past succes and look for accidental, non-causative factors associated with such succes that will tend to mislead as one appraises odds implicit in a proposed new undertaking
  • Look for dangerous aspects of the new undertaking that were not present when past succes accord

Andere gedachten

  • “Keep your eyes wide open before marriage and half shut thereafter.”
  • See it like it is and love anyway.
  • People often under appraise both the competency and morals of competitors they dislike. 
  • It can be dangerous to be the carrier of unwelcome news.
  • Always tell us the bad news promptly. It is only the good news that can wait.

Sometimes, when one receives a favor, the favour may trigger an envy-driven dislike for the person who was in so favourable a state that he could easily be a favour giver.

Simple, pain-avoiding psychological denial

  • We do a lot not to confront pain.
  • “It is not necessary to hope in order to persevere”.

Excessive self-regard tendency

  • After you make a decision you think the choice is better (than before the decision).
  • People gamble more if they think they have influence (pull a lever, pick a number)
  • Hire on basis of the past record instead of your conclusion after face to face contact
  • Most criminals don’t appraise themselves as all that bad. They think considering the pressures and disadvantages of their lives, it is understandable and forgivable that they behaved as they did and became what they became.
  • Fixable but unfixed bad performance is bad character and tends to create more of itself causing more damage to the excuse giver with each tolerated instance.
  • Be more objective when thinking about yourself and the value of your past and future activity.

“Never underestimate the man who overestimates himself”

Self-regard in the form of justified pride in a job wel done is a large constructive force. Pride is not bad. 

A trustworthy man, even after allowing for the inconveniences of his chosen course, ordinarily has a life that averages out better than he would have if he provided less reliability

Over optimism tendency

“What a man wishes, that also will he believe”.

Deprival super reaction

If a man almost gets something he greatly wants and has it jerked away from him at the last moment, he will react much as if he had long owned the reward and had it jerked away. I include the natural human reactions to both kinds of loss experience – the loss of the possessed reward and the loss of the almost-possessed reward under one description, Deprival Superreaction Tendency.

  • He will often compare what is near (losing 100 bucks) instead of what really matters (having 100.000 in the bank).
  • A man ordinarily reacts with irrational intensity to even a small los, or a threatened loss of property, friendship, territory, opportunity, status or any other valued thing.
  • When a vocal critic is a former believer, hostility is boosted by a sense of betrayal and fear that the conflicting views will have extra persuasive power.
  • Businesses are afraid of firing labor when the business is going bad, and that can cause the whole company to collapse. 
  • Don’t go to auctions.

Social-proof tendency

  • Want to change the behaviour of a child, manipulate the quality of their peers.
  • Going with the crowd ends the discomfort from doubt.
  • Triggers in the presence of puzzlement or stress.
  • Inaction by others lead to inaction.
  • Learn how to ignore the examples from others when they are wrong, because few skills are more worth having.

Contrast imprecation tendency

  • 1.000 is not so much when you just spend 65.000.
  • Even when people know that this sort of customer manipulation is being attempted, it will often work to trigger buying.
  • Being aware of psychological ploys is not a perfect defence.
  • Cognition, misled by tiny changes involving low contrast, will often miss a trend that is destiny.
  • A small leak will sink a great ship.

Stress-influence tendency

Light stress can improve performance, heavy stress causes dysfunction.

Change behaviour of dogs by stress:

  • Any dog can be broken down
  • He could’t reverse a breakdown except by reimposing stress
  • The dog hardest to break were also the hardest to return to their pre-breakdown state.

A heavy handed imposition of stress might be the only reversal method that would work to remedy one of the worst evils imaginable: a stolen mind.

Availability misweighing tendency

The mind over weighs what is easily available.

  • The main antidote often involve procedures and checklists.
  • Extra-vivid evidence should often consciously be under weighed while less vivid evidence should be over weighed.
  • You can use it to persuade someone else, Or as a device for improving one’s own memory by attaching vivid images to many items one doesn’t want to forget.

An idea or a feat is not worth more merely because it is easily available to you.

Use-it-or-lose-it tendency

Throughout his life, a wise man engages in practice of all his useful, rarely used skills, many of them outside his discipline, as a sort of duty to his better self.

  • When you practice less skills, you will create gaps in the framework to understand new experiences better.
  • Skills of a very high order can be maintained only with daily practice.
  • When you reach fluency you will lose the skill more slowly and it will come back faster when refreshed with new learning. 

Twaddle tendency

  • Veel gepraat kan serieus werk tegenhouden.
  • The principal job of an academic administration is to keep the people who don’t matter from interfering with the work of the people that do.

Reason respecting tendency

You had to tell WHO was to do WHAT, WHERE, WHEN and why. 

Reasons help convince, even if the reasons are not that valid (can i cut in line, because i have to make some copies).

There is a natural tendency to overlook anything that’s simple and important. 

The brain is like a sophisticated fortune teller, and the predictions ultimately become ambitions and perceptions.