Monthly Archives: January 2023

Third Culture Books; Perceptions and Reality

Today’s three topics: A new Michael Shermer book I missed when it came out last October; How magenta is a color that doesn’t exist on the spectrum; Public perceptions of the economy. There are authors I’ve followed for years, both … Continue reading

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A Crisp, Sunny January Day

Topics for today: Why China’s decline in population is a good thing; Yuval Noah Harari on identity; Moral panic and the right-wing mind; How climate change has been covered in textbooks since the 1970s.

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Recent Science Matters

What fetal tissue actually looks like; how humans inbreed dogs to the point of their inability to survive in the wild; the discovery of the enormous universe and who did and didn’t get credit.

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Feelings vs. Data, Political Items, and Awe

Today Paul Krugman counters feelings with facts, this time about the economy; also, items about DeSantis, red state murders, Truth Social ads. And a new book about awe.

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Rural Rage and Republican Shenanigans

Paul Krugman responds to Thomas Edsall about the roots of conservative rural resentment, and how their three key perceptions are in fact wrong. Also, the GOP’s 30% sales tax idea; how religion would control or cut off the world; and … Continue reading

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The Moral Arc and Animals, Animal Intelligence, and People Who Don’t Read Books

Just these three topics for today, one focusing on Ray Nayler’s SF novel The Mountain in the Sea.

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More About the Evolution of a Political Party

Today’s items follow up from yesterday’s, about the growing extremism and commitment to things that aren’t true by one particular American political party. As I still wonder, how did we get here? Specific items are about changes in the Republican … Continue reading

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Things That Are Not True, and Immorality

Catching up on interesting items from the past few days, about the Christian right’s embrace of a “lying libertine,” how faith healers who kill their children get away with it in some states, how Republicans who lose elections react to … Continue reading

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Michael Shermer: THE MORAL ARC

Subtitled: How Science and Reason Lead Humanity toward Truth, Justice, and Freedom (Henry Holt, January 2015, 541pp, including 55pp of notes, 30pp of bibliography, and 15pp of acknowledgments and index) This is Michael Shermer’s magnus opus, perhaps, culminating a running … Continue reading

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Robert Lanza and Nancy Kress, OBSERVER

(The Story Plant, January 2023, 380pp) This is a hard science fiction thriller that impressed me in many ways, though I’m not a regular reader of thrillers per se and perhaps am not in a position to judge the book … Continue reading

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