Time to consider cutting our losses, canceling Tokyo Olympics
(The Asahi Shimbun, April 20)
The expression “Concorde fallacy” was coined in reference to the eponymous British-French supersonic passenger airliner that debuted in the 1970s as the epitome of luxury air travel.
In the course of its development, the governments of both Britain and France realized the airline’s economic viability was extremely dubious. But having already invested heavily in the project, they refused to give up.
The Concorde ended up a commercial disaster, according to “Ho to Shakaikagaku wo Tsunagu” (Linking law and social sciences) by Takashi Iida.
The lesson from this failed supersonic transport project, Iida pointed out, is that it is better to cut one’s losses and move on, rather than continue to obsess over the sunk costs.
We can apply this to the Tokyo Olympics. It is a fact that ever since Tokyo won the bid, massive investments have been made on the construction of facilities and other endeavors.
Also, athletes have staked their careers on training for the Games, and I can fully understand how difficult it must be for the organizers to let them down by canceling this quadrennial sporting extravaganza.
But now is the time to assess the situation with cold objectively.