Writing balanced posts can be tricky, especially in relation to vaccines. Vaccines, like religions and politics, have become a hot-button topic in social discussions, and these three areas are absolutely polarized, definitely enter-at-your-own-risk sorts of discussions that can quickly turn to pissing matches. Ah, but they don't have to, I don't think, and not all disagreement is about that sort of thing.
Know why vegetarians are so angry? They don't eat meat, it seems. So this Thanksgiving, grab the turkey leg and tear off a hunk of flesh with your teeth and rationalize that evolutionary psychology thinks it made your cavemen ancestors nicer people.
MAFIA life used to be simple; whether you liked "Morte Alle Francia Italia Anela" or "Morte Alle Francese Italiani Avanti"(1) they both meant kicking the snot out of the French, who had a pesky habit of causing trouble prior to Italian unification and weren't much better afterward.
But then it became about money, and causing trouble for people in order to protect them from trouble they caused. Eventually, the right people could not stay bought and the wronged people started to have enough so crackdowns by law enforcement occurred, to bloody effect.
Complexity, Morality and our Collective Economic Fate.
I’ve been reading a lot of Paul Krugman lately, given the state of the economy and such. If you have been following him, you may have noticed one of his repeating refrains, “Economics is not a morality play.
To really understand what he is saying, you have to understand the evolution of human morality and how moral dictates play out in a complex system like the economy.
Are you traumatized by terror flicks? Maybe more than you know. Scary movies actually create a light version of post-traumatic stress disorder. This is what causes bad dreams and irrational fears of kids riding Big Wheels in hotel hallways (and, perhaps more rationally, of Jack Nicholson peeking through axe holes into your bathroom).
And by exploring how people stop these dreams and fears, researchers are learning how we might combat more serious PTSD. For instance, researchers find that talking about a horror movie afterward reduces the occurrence of bad dreams.
If an isolated question asks you if you are more inclined to vote for one politician who lies about limiting his campaign financing or one who agrees to use only matching public funds in the interests of campaign finance reform and sticks to it, who would you pick? Obviously if political campaigns were limited to that one topic, the honest politician would win - but quality leadership incorporates 'negative' personality traits too and President Barack Obama was able to spend double the money on advertising of his opponent because he used that strategy wisely.
A new study in rats says growing up with lots of sisters makes a male less sexy to females, because the sex ratio of a male rat's family while young influences his sexual behavior and therefore how female rats respond to him later.
Early life obviously affects later behavior but how early and how much of an impact and how can it be quantified in a less 'soft' fashion. There are correlation studies that even conclude the position of a fetus in the uterus matters and that a female fetus that spends the pregnancy sandwiched between two brothers grows up to be more masculine because she's been exposed to their hormones.
I'm going to be honest here. I have a bone to pick with science.
A week or so ago on Twitter
, I tweeted this
Based on some of the responses I got, I decided to probe a little further. I wanted to see if I was in the minority in my opinion, or if others felt the same way. Apparently, I'm not alone.
It's a known aspect of the human condition that people tend to diminish the negative impact of something they do while recognizing the negative impact of things they don't do as common sense. In Hollywood, director Rob Reiner thinks cigarettes should be censored from movies but has no problem with teenage sex in films. Some blame junk food advertising for obesity but may think violence on TV has no impact.
A new study in the the Oxford Journal Social Cognitive and Affective Neuroscience says that violent films, TV programs and video games desensitize teenagers to violence and blunts their emotional responses to aggression. Do you believe it? Probably not if you like violent video games.
These two dominant models of strengths are slightly different in concept. Gallup's Strengthsfinder is more workplace-oriented, helping people to do better in their careers and organisations to work better. Perhaps performance-oriented is a better term. Values In Action (VIA), which we looked at in depth
earlier, is character-oriented, helping people to achieve virtue.