Story I heard from Congressman Bill Foster this morning: Last fall, when the Stimulus Bill first went to the House for a vote, Congress members on the floor were watching the markets drop in real time on their blackberries. At the same time, traders in the pits on Wall Street were watching Congress voting on the Bill. Pro voters began berating Con voters as they came to the floor to vote. In effect, traders and their thousands of customers, spread all over the world, were doing the same.
Pause and let that sink in. We live in Robert Musil's world now. If we aren't careful, our decisionmaking can become very tightly correlated very fast.
Consider how many steps the framers of the United States Constitution took to avoid their decisionmaking during the Convention -- or the decisionmaking of actors in different branches of government -- from becoming too correlated.