Monday, June 2, 2014

Arrogance and Bold Forecasts


Throughout the ages there have been many examples of people who have with immense arrogance, made bold forecasts predicting outcomes only to have history slap them in the face. A recent example of this would be when Mosiuoa Lekota promised to eat his hat, in the event that his party received fewer votes than it did in the 2009 elections. Acknowledgment has to be given to the Cope party leader for having the courage of convictions to go through with it, in front of live television cameras. Below are some other great examples of bold true life statements, that proved way off the mark.    

“The horse is here to stay but the automobile is only a novelty—a fad.” – -The president of the Michigan Savings Bank advising Henry Ford’s lawyer not to invest in the Ford Motor Co., 1903

“The idea that cavalry will be replaced by these iron coaches is absurd. It is little short of treasonous.” — Comment of Aide-de-camp to Field Marshal Haig, at a tank demonstration, 1916

“The Americans have need of the telephone, but we do not. We have plenty of messenger boys.” — Sir William Preece, Chief Engineer, British Post Office, 1878

Reagan doesn’t have that presidential look.” – United Artists executive after rejecting Ronald Reagan as lead in the 1964 film The Best Man

“Rail travel at high speed is not possible because passengers, unable to breathe, would die of asphyxia.” – Dr. Dionysius Lardner, 1830

 “There is not the slightest indication that nuclear energy will ever be obtainable. It would mean that the atom would have to be shattered at will.” – Albert Einstein, 1932

We don’t like their sound, and guitar music is on the way out.” – Decca Recording Company on declining to sign the Beatles, 1962

“This ‘telephone’ has too many shortcomings to be seriously considered as a means of communication. The device is inherently of no value to us.” – Western Union internal memo, 1876

“Everyone acquainted with the subject will recognize it as a conspicuous failure.” – -Henry Morton, president of the Stevens Institute of Technology, on Edison’s light bulb, 1880

“I think there is a world market for maybe five computers.” – Thomas Watson, chairman of IBM, 1943

Considering that I am blogging using my IBM Lenovo Thinkpad, I would have say that the last one is probably my favourite. 

Ernest Roper
Membership Services Manager

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