Ronald Sims writes that Abilene`s paradox is similar to group thinking, but that it differs significantly, including that individuals in group thinking do not act against their conscious desires and generally feel comfortable with the decisions made by the group.  According to Sims, in the Abilene Paradox, individuals who act against their own desires have rather negative feelings about the outcome. According to Sims, group thinking is a psychological phenomenon that influences the clarity of thought, in which, in the Abilene paradox, thought is not influenced.  The theory is often used to explain very bad group decisions, especially ideas about the superiority of “committee dominance.” Harvey himself cited, for example, the Watergate scandal as a possible case of Abilene`s paradox in action.  The Watergate scandal occurred in the United States in the 1970s, when many senior officials in the administration of then-President Richard Nixon cited the cover-up and possibly the execution of a burglary at the headquarters of the Democratic National Committee in Washington, D.C. Harvey, several people who sanitized themselves for cover-up, as an indication that they had made the personal decision. I was afraid to express it. For example, campaign agent Herbert Porter said he “wasn`t someone who gets up in a meeting and says it should be stopped,” a decision he later attributed “to the fear of pressure from the group that was going to happen as a team player.”  Like group thought theories, Abilene`s theory of paradoxes is used to illustrate that groups not only have difficulty dealing with disagreements, but that agreements can also be a problem in a group that does not work.  In the Abilene Paradox, a group of people collectively decides on an approach that goes against the preferences of many or all individuals in the group.  This is a common breakdown of group communication, in which each member mistakenly believes that his or her own preferences are contrary to the group`s preferences and therefore does not object. A common phrase that refers to Abilene`s paradox is the desire not to “tear the boat apart.” This differs from group thinking in that the Abilene paradox is characterized by an inability to manage an agreement.  The term was introduced in 1974 by management expert Jerry B.
Harvey in his article “The Abilene Paradox: The Management of Agreement.”  The name of the phenomenon comes from an anecdote that Harvey uses in the article to shed light on the paradox: one of them says dishonestly: “It was a great journey, wasn`t it?” The mother-in-law said she would have preferred to stay at home, but would have left because the other three were so enthusiastic. The husband said: “I wasn`t happy doing what we were doing. I just left to satisfy the rest of you. The woman said, “I just went with you to make you happy.” I should have been crazy for wanting to go out like that in the heat. The father-in-law said at the time that he only proposed it because he thought others could be bored. The group backed off and were puzzled that they had decided together to take a trip that none of them wanted. They would have preferred to sit comfortably, but would not admit it if they still had time to enjoy the afternoon. The phenomenon is explained by socio-psychological theories of social conformity and social influence, which suggest that people are often very reluctant to act against the tendency of a group.   According to Harvey, the phenomenon can occur when individuals feel fear of action — stress on the group that can show negative attitudes toward them if they are not involved. This fear of action stems from what Harvey called “negative fantasies” – unpleasant visualizations of what the group might say or do if individuals honestly end up on their opinion – when there is a real risk of discontent and negative consequences for not walking. The individual may experience the “fear of separation” for fear of being excluded from the group.  The engine is hot, dusty and long.