twenty-twenty hindsight

20/20 hindsight

Knowledge of what one should have done, because it is easier to clearly reevaluate past actions or decisions than when they are being made or done. A reference to the visual acuity of normal eyesight (20/20 vision). With 20/20 hindsight, I can see now that having my brother as my legal counsel was unwise. A: "I can't believe I was ever interested in such a self-absorbed jerk." B: "Don't blame yourself. We all have 20/20 hindsight."
See also: 20, hindsight

twenty-twenty hindsight

The ability to determine how some mistake or failure in the past could have been avoided. Often used ironically or sarcastically; sometimes stylized as "20/20 hindsight." I can see now that having my brother as my legal counsel was unwise, but I guess twenty-twenty hindsight isn't much use right now. A: "I can't believe I was ever interested in such a self-absorbed jerk." B: "Don't beat yourself about it. We all have 20/20 hindsight."
See also: hindsight

twenty-twenty hindsight

Knowledge after the fact, as in With twenty-twenty hindsight, I wouldn't have bought these tickets. This idiom uses twenty-twenty in the optometrist's sense, that is, "indicating normal vision," and hindsight in the sense of "looking back" or "reconsidering." [First half of 1900s]
See also: hindsight

20/20 hindsight

verb
See also: 20, hindsight

twenty-twenty hindsight

and 20/20 hindsight
n. an ability to figure out what one should have done after it is too late to do it. Everybody has twenty-twenty hindsight!
See also: hindsight

twenty-twenty hindsight, with

With complete after-the-fact knowledge. This expression, usually preceding a statement like “I would have done or said such-and-such,” uses the optometrist’s term for perfectly normal vision. The idea that hindsight, with its superior knowledge, is better than foresight has been stated since at least the nineteenth century. “If a man had half as much foresight as he had hindsight, he’d be a lot better off,” wrote Robert J. Burdette (Hawk-eyes, 1879). The Hollywood screenwriter Billy Wilder is quoted as having said, “Hindsight is always twenty-twenty.”
References in periodicals archive ?
Our vision of the "perfect" internal auditor has been transformed: we have advanced from providing twenty-twenty hindsight to offering real insight into our organizations' risks, controls, and operations.
That's the first step, and it's an important one because creditors and equity holders (and possibly courts) are likely to question actions (and inactions) of directors and officers--often with the benefit of twenty-twenty hindsight.
Historians are charged with applying twenty-twenty hindsight to incidents that, at the time, seem to be only a curious combination of blurring events.
Twenty-twenty hindsight, however, opened up a whole new vista, one that can give risk managers a valuable insight into effective techniques for selling property protection.
With twenty-twenty hindsight, it's easy to see how specious and fickle the outpourings of both attention and money were, and it's easy now to point up the hubris of those who believed that the rules of the game were changing forever.
Curtis's oblique poetic strategies, suffused with the ironies of twenty-twenty hindsight, are no less diverse.