terrorist "risk management"

I've argued all along that our response to the events of September 11 was and remains, aside from being just plain wrong, all out of proportion to both the scale and the continued threat that it might represent, but until I saw this report I hadn't thought of my attitude as related to my former career as a liability underwriter of insurance risk.

[George Mason University economist Roger Congleton] says the drama of the Sept. 11 attacks makes the overreaction understandable but that the statistical reality of the terror threat should be the key to allocating resources.

"When you have 3,000 people killed at once it is a very shocking and trying event, but that many people were killed in highway accidents in September 2001," said Congleton. "This is no less shocking for the people who lost loved ones."

These people are talking my old professional language--risk management!
John Parachini, a terrorism expert at the RAND Corp., agreed that Congleton's approach of managing risk is important and should be part of the "portfolio of ideas" used to evaluate terrorism policy.

"One of the problems we have, particularly in this country, is assessing the risk of terrorism," Parachini told UPI. "We tend to exaggerate the actual impact because of the unknown nature of it. "


"At the moment we might be spending big, but we are not necessarily spending smart," he said.

About this Entry

Published on August 14, 2002 8:39 PM.

previous entry: Report from Palestine I

next entry: am I part of the "axis of evil?"