Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Tony Scott And Rational Decisions

Tony Scott committed suicide a few days ago. He was 68. He was a rather successful movies director and many people will remember his movies forever. I will always remember Top Gun with Tom Cruise.

His suicide is debated by the media and across the blogosphere and some of us wonder whether committing suicide can ever be justified, mostly when you reach a certain age, status, wealth, family, and prestige. I am of  the belief that committing suicide can be fully rational under some circumstances regardless of status and age.

Getting old is psychologically painful enough when you are healthy but imagine getting old while you are ill must be exponentially worse. Imagine then that you would have to budget for medical expenses and prescriptions and all you have worked for is just a distant memory. Why would you want to get much older past a certain age?

Everything you stand for is behind you and it feels like hiking up a mountain where the views around you get wider and wider and the details get less and less important. So, when you become old, living day by day gets more and more painful as there are more and more details that you lose. Perspective wins and daily details become pure repetition.

Many retirement planners and tools would tell you to plan to live 40 or 50 years after retirement date but the truth is that you can control precisely how long you are going to live past any arbitrary date. So, why would you plan for something unknown when you can plan for something known and as clear as the law of gravitation?