The rational strategy is to appear irrational

I doubt I’ve ever seen a more interesting moment in a game show than this:

I only wonder why the clever fellow on the right (who initiated their negotiation) reversed his final decision. Perhaps he feared his opponent would renege on his promise and choose “steal” out of spite, only then to be moved to sympathy–and possibly to sharing the spoils–after the game.

The difference between this scene and the classic prisoner’s dilemma, of course, is that the reward actually can be shared after the decision. Otherwise there would be no incentive at all to be trustworthy.

Hat tip to Kenneth Anderson.

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