Society

The man who studies the spread of ignorance

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How do people or companies with vested interests spread ignorance and obfuscate knowledge? BBC News Georgina Kenyon Georgina Kenyon finds there is a term which defines this phenomenon. In 1979, a secret… The man who studies… Read More »

15 ways the world will be terrifying in 2050

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By mid-century, we’ll likely have self-driving cars, more widespread internet access, and semi-smart robots. Christina Sterbenz and Erin Brodwin But despite our technological advances, humanity has failed to solve many of its problems. The world hasn’t weaned itself off fossil fuels or… 15 ways the… Read More »

Trump’s grandfather was a pimp and tax evader; his father a member of the KKK

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As they say, the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree; Donald Trump’s racism can easily be traced through his lineage. Most families of enormous wealth have a dark and sometimes scandalous, even monstrous past. Tim King American Herald Tribune Donald Trump‘s clan is no exception to that rule. His grandfather was a pimp and a tax evader, his father a racist who would in the course of his life, clash with New York City Police as a member of ... Read More »

Holocaust Survivor Shares Her Remarkable Story About Kindness And The Human Spirit

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In 1944 when Francine Christophe was just a child, she and her mother were deported from France to the Bergen-Belsen concentration camp in Germany with other Jewish women and children. Women You Should Know In this clip, she tells the story of her time in the concentration camp and shares an incredibly moving story of kindness and the strength of the human spirit. This video clip is part of a larger collection of stories and images created by photographer and ... Read More »

Healthy Gut, Healthy Brain

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A neurologist explains the power of your microbiome to heal and protect your brain Your brain’s health is dictated by what goes on in your gut David Perlmutter, MD Experience Life That’s right: What’s taking place in your intestines affects not only your brain’s daily functions, but also determines your risk for a number of neurological conditions in the future. Your intestinal organisms, or microbiome, participate in a wide variety of bodily systems, including immunity, detoxification, inflammation, neurotransmitter and vitamin ... Read More »

When Schools Overlook Introverts

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As the focus on group work and collaboration increases, classrooms are neglecting the needs of students who work better in quiet settings. MICHAEL GODSEY The Atlantic When Susan Cain published Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can’t Stop Talking nearly four years ago, it was immediately met with acclaim. The book criticizes schools and other key institutions for primarily accommodating extroverts and such individuals’ “need for lots of stimulation.” Much to introverts’ relief, it also seeks to raise awareness ... Read More »

Why College Is Not a Commodity

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What is college for? We typically answer this question by citing a variety of purposes, of which liberal education is only one. Most other goals — marketable skills, moral and social development, learning how to learn — are tied to the demands of employers. Gary Gutting The Chronicle of Higher Education Yes, young people need all of those qualities. But, apart from liberal education, our best colleges — say, the top 100 major research universities and the 50 best four-year ... Read More »

The Opposite of Hoarding

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For some, the need to shed possessions is a life-consuming illness—but the cultural embrace of decluttering can make it hard to seek help. Leslie Garrett  The Atlantic As long as she can remember, Annabelle Charbit has loathed “stuff.” She hated birthdays because birthdays meant gifts. And gifts meant finding a way to toss them. At 5 years old, Charbit would sneak toys into her younger brother’s room. By age 10, she… The Opposite of… Read More »

Gambling Addiction and the Brain

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Gambling — whether it be the lottery, scratch cards, casino games, bingo, slot machines, Internet poker, or sports betting — is more acceptable and accessible than ever before. Mary Bates BrainFacts For most people, gambling is a recreational activity. But for a significant minority, it progresses to a serious problem. Recently, scientists and mental health professionals decided to classify problem gambling as a behavioral addiction, the first of its kind, putting it in a category of disorders that also includes ... Read More »

Rereading Herodotus’ Histories of virtue, barbarians and the eternal human struggle

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Towards the end of Herodotus’ Histories, someone on the losing side of a fight is castrated by his sons, then crucified while those… Mark Thomas The Age Herodotus of Halicarnassus, “the father of history”, does not blink or squirm, and does not permit a reader to do so… Every gruesomely gory detail is evoked and underlined, but… Rereading Herodotus’ Histories… Read More »

The Tricks People Use to Avoid Debate

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In the art of evading meaningful policy discussions, all political camps have honed their particular styles. HANNA ROSIN The Atlantic A proper argument takes intellectual vigor, nimbleness, and sustained attention. If carried on long enough, it can push both parties to a deeper level of understanding. Oxford debaters hack away at each… The Tricks People… Read More »

Ask the Bigot: Who is Katy Faust and why is the daughter of lesbian parents against gay marriage?

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American Katy Faust was raised by her lesbian mother and her partner and she now runs a blog called asktheBigot, which is fiercely opposed to gay marriage. ABC She became a Christian in high school and was concerned by the plight of children. She is in Canberra to lobby the Federal Government against gay marriage and she told Lateline why. These are her key points: 1. She loves her lesbian mother and her partner: “While my mother was a fantastic ... Read More »

How to overtake cyclists – the video all drivers should watch

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The Highway code requires vehicles to give cyclists at least as much space as a car – but many cars endanger lives by ignoring this. Chris Boardman features in a new YouTube video that aims to help change that Carlton Reid  The Guardian “Socialism,” wrote the 1970s Chilean politician José Viera Gallo, “can only arrive by bicycle.” That’s why Jeremy Corbyn cycles everywhere. And come the revolution, prime minister Corbyn will see to it that this land of ours will ... Read More »

How to Live Wisely

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Imagine you are Dean for a Day. What is one actionable change you would implement to enhance the college experience on campus? RICHARD J. LIGHT The New York Times I have asked students this question for years. The answers can be eye-opening. A few years ago, the responses began to move away from “tweak the history course” or “change the… How to Live… Read More »

‘Sea Slaves’: The Human Misery That Feeds Pets and Livestock

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Men who have fled servitude on fishing boats recount beatings and worse as nets are cast for the catch that will become pet food and livestock feed. IAN URBINA The New York Times SONGKHLA, Thailand — Lang Long’s ordeal began in the back of a truck. After watching his younger siblings go hungry because their family’s rice patch in Cambodia could not provide for everyone, he accepted a trafficker’s offer to travel across the Thai border for a construction job. ... Read More »

How Walking in Nature Changes the Brain

A walk in the park may soothe the mind and, in the process, change the workings of our brains in ways that improve our mental health, according to an interesting new study of the physical effects on the brain of visiting nature. By GRETCHEN REYNOLDS Most of us today live in cities and spend far less time outside in green, natural spaces than people did several generations ago. City dwellers also have a… Source: How Walking in Nature Changes the Brain ... Read More »