I’ve been thinking about why it is we are so obsessed with predicting disasters—over and above preventing them. What is so magical about a forecast? The answer may have something to do with the way the brain is wired. The brain loathes uncertainty. It’s a survival skill, except when it isn’t. We like patterns, which helps explain why we like music and storytelling. But we fear things we can’t predict. So we read horoscopes or watch CNBC—or sell all of our stocks when the market is low—just to stop the itch of the unknown.