Share: Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality

The world around us redunds with opportunities, explodes with opportunities, which nearly all folk ignore because it would require them to violate a habit of thought; in every battle a thousand Hufflepuff bones waiting to be sharpened into spears. If you had thought to try a massed Finite Incantatem on general principles, you would have dispelled Mr. Potter’s suit of chainmail and everything else he was wearing except his underwear, which leads me to suspect that Mr. Potter did not quite realize his own vulnerability. Or you could have had your soldiers swarm Mr. Potter and Mr. Longbottom and physically wrest the wands from their hands. Mr. Malfoy’s own response was not what I would term well-reasoned, but at least he did not wholly ignore his thousand alternatives.” A sardonic smile. “But you, Miss Granger, had the misfortune to remember how to cast the Stunning Hex, and so you did not search your excellent memory for a dozen easier spells that might have proved efficacious. And you pinned all your army’s hopes on your own person, so they lost spirit when you fell. Afterward they continued to cast their futile Sleep Hexes, governed by the habits of fighting that had been trained into them, unable to break the pattern as Mr. Malfoy did. I cannot quite comprehend what goes through people’s minds when they repeat the same failed strategy over and over, but apparently it is an astonishingly rare realization that you can try something else. And so the Sunshine Regiment was wiped out by two soldiers.” The Defense Professor grinned mirthlessly. “One perceives certain similarities to how fifty Death Eaters dominated all of magical Britain, and how our much-loved Ministry continues in its rul

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