Kevin Drum and Paul Campos are debating what we should do about irrational over-reactions to terrorist threats. Matt Steinglass referees:

The reason we freak out more about Al-Qaeda than about traffic accidents is that Al-Qaeda is made up of humans, and enemy humans inspire hatred, while threatening natural phenomena merely inspire fear. Humans are biased towards responding to human-directed threats because human-directed threats are part of the contest for power within and among human polities.

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