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How to tell if a plan you have is terrible

Sometimes there are complex problems that we think of simple solutions for. Then we stubbornly sit with our solutions wondering why nobody uses them. It's so obvious that our brilliant plans are the best. People must be stupid for not using them right? Usually it's us that's the stupid ones and our ideas are terrible. So to help prevent stewing with bad ideas, let me give a simple guide how to tell if your idea is completely awful.
Criteria: You rub your hands together with evil glee at the idea. That's it. This might sound pretty stupid since we're not Saturday morning cartoon villains, but humor me for a bit while I explain. Certain ideas that we have give us a bizarre sense of satisfaction. And it's pretty easy to tell when you or someone else feels this way about their ideas by the way they sound so satisfied and proud of the idea.
In an environmental class I took, we were discussing how product manufacturers had to pay to repair the damage their products inflict on the environment and how these costs are often brought down to the consumer and how laws enforce this. The topic shifted to plastic bags vs reusable ones at the store. Some girl said that consumers should be charged for each plastic bag to get them to remember their reusable ones. One could clearly detect the attitude of “that'll serve 'em right” in her tone.
I heard this tone once again when my mother claimed that all people on the sex offender list should be put to death. Her stance didn't change even when I explained to her that you can get put on the sex offender list for urinating in public because you were drunk. Of course you can't be very flexible with these terrible half baked ideas.
I've had bad ideas like this too. I was forced to watch the same ad of perhaps the world's stupidest man explain how he hit three kids while texting as part of a message to not text and drive. It puts the human species to shame that they have to be reminded of this. ( https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PN1eljqxs44  ) After my higher brain functions were sanded down by the annoying repetition of the ad I seriously considered this ad a bad thing and instead thought that a more sensible thing to do would to just have the government select individuals that get in accidents while they were texting ,and trim them from the population. I'm glad I was able to identify this idea as bad because of the little cartoon demon on my shoulder going “Yeah, yeah. That would fix things.” So if that thing says your idea is brilliant, toss it.
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Added: 5 years, 6 months ago
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