Discipline means different thing to different people.
But for the sake of this discussion, let’s say it has to do with control – or self-control. At least that is how it was discussed in the piece excerpted below appearing in today’s The Guardian: “We have reached the end game of have-it-all culture.
“Because I’m Worth It has had its day, and discipline is the new decadence. The Nike Fuel Band, which tracks your calorie expenditure and praises you for an active lifestyle, has more smug-factor than a Rolex right now. The dominant meme of annoying Facebook behaviour has segued from the posting of party photos to “inspirational” quotes (American men – Henry Ford, Albert Einstein, Ralph Waldo Emerson – are especially hot right now). Meanwhile, the narrative of reality TV has changed: bad behaviour in the hot tub, à la early Big Brother, has been replaced, from The Voice to The Apprentice, by Saturday-night preaching of the age-old Sunday-morning mantras that hard work will be rewarded, that mentors must be respected and listened to. Even family life has taken on a new set of values. With every issue of Goop, the cosy, cupcake-baking ideal of motherhood cedes territory to the Tiger Mothers (whose children will be more successful than yours) and the Gwyneth Paltrow-esque mothers (whose children will be slimmer and healthier, ergo more successful, than yours.) Continue reading “The age of discipline”
Psychological forces like motivated reasoning have long been associated with conspiracy thinking, but scientists are learning more every year, states today’s Salon.com, continuing: “For instance, a British study published last year found that people who believe one conspiracy theory are prone to believe many, even ones that are completely contradictory. “We’ve written before about the historical and social aspects of conspiracy theories, but wanted to learn more about the psychology of people who believe, for instance, that the Boston Marathon bombing was a government “false flag” operation. Professor Stephan Lewandowsky, a cognitive scientist at the University of Western Australia, published a paper late last month in the journal Psychological Science that has received widespread praise for looking at the thinking behind conspiracy theories about science and climate change. We asked him to explain the psychology of conspiracy theories. This conversation has been edited for brevity and clarity.
“There are number of factors, but probably one of the most important ones in this instance is that, paradoxically, it gives people a sense of control. People hate randomness, they dread the sort of random occurrences that can destroy their lives, so as a mechanism against that dread, it turns out that it’s much easier to believe in a conspiracy. Then you have someone to blame, it’s not just randomness. Continue reading “The appeal of conspiracy theories”
Parents worry a lot about the safety of children crossing the street. It looks like they should be worried about Grandpa, too.
Older people are at higher risk of being killed by a car while walking, according to new data from the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, reports NPR.
“Going up against a 2,000-pound moving metal object is never a good idea. Pedestrians account for 13 percent of all motor-vehicle traffic deaths, even though walking accounts for 10.5 percent of trips.The CDC data crunchers looked at pedestrian deaths from 2001 to 2010, to get a grasp of differences in sex, age and ethnicity. Differences there are.
“The death rates were lowest for children under age 15. Maybe all that parental nagging about “stop, look and listen” is working?The risk of pedestrian death increases slowly through life and peaks with people over age 75, who are more than twice as likely to be killed by a car than are people overall. The results were published in the latest Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report. This study didn’t look at why, but Laurie Beck, an epidemiologist at CDC who led the study, says that a number of factors, including the fact that older people take more time to cross the street, are responsible. Continue reading “Walking while old: The risks”
Who is more exhausted: men or women?
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has the answer, though it’s one that you probably could have arrived at without a second’s thought, reports NPR.
“More women than men said they felt very tired or exhausted most days or every day, when government surveyors asked them. Overall, about 15 percent of women said they were worn out compared with 10 percent of the men.
“Now, it gets even more interesting, or maybe it’s just obvious, when you break down the responses by age.
“The biggest difference in tiredness by sex is in the 18-44 age group. Women in the group were about twice as likely as men to feel wiped out: 16 percent versus 9 percent.
“Now what in the world could be going on? Hmm. Continue reading “The fatigue gender gap”
Survey results just in say the majority of the U.S. population supports President Obama’s wide-ranging proposals to reduce gun violence
“Americans’ immediate reaction to President Barack Obama’s proposals for new laws designed to reduce gun violence is more positive than negative, with 53% saying they would want their representative in Congress to vote for the set of proposed new laws, while 41% say their representative should vote against them,” says the Gallup organization
“These results are from Gallup polling conducted Thursday, Jan. 17, the day after Obama’s announcement. The question asked Americans about the “set” of new laws, even though in reality, to the extent the House and the Senate pursue these proposals, it could be on a one-by-one basis. The results suggest that Obama begins his campaign for passage of the laws with a majority — but not a supermajority — of the public behind him.
“The question explicitly identified the gun proposals as those that President Obama announced on Wednesday, making it not surprising to find that the strongest support for the proposals comes among Democrats and liberals, and the weakest support comes among Republicans and conservatives. Additionally, groups that traditionally lean more Democratic — nonwhites, Easterners, and those with postgraduate educations — are significantly above average in support. Continue reading “Majority back Obama on guns”