Unfogged Mobile

I Will Not Use The Word "High" In The Title
Posted by Ogged on 11.21.14

This story seems to be funded at least in part by GE, so maybe it's all about appreciating their brain imaging equipment, but the researcher seems legit, and his finding is so interesting. There's something known as "The Utah Paradox" which is that people in Utah consistently report the highest levels of satisfaction with their lives, but the state also has much more than its share of depression and suicide. The theory is that the main culprit is altitude, which makes people not predisposed to depression euphoric, and people who are predisposed to depression depressed.

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International Development
Posted by Heebie-Geebie on 11.21.14

DQ sends along The Problem With International Development. It's a great article.

The repeated "success, scale, fail" experience of the last 20 years of development practice suggests something super boring: Development projects thrive or tank according to the specific dynamics of the place in which they're applied. It's not that you test something in one place, then scale it up to 50. It's that you test it in one place, then test it in another, then another. No one will ever be invited to explain that in a TED talk.

Furthermore, the current vogue of ranking charities includes a target overhead budget of 10%, which sabotages the kind of intimate relationship building and site-specific knowledge needed in order to help one single village in Kenya.

(I kept thinking that the author's voice sounded familiar while reading the article. And lo! We've long been a fan.)

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Family Man
Posted by Ogged on 11.21.14

Listen, sweetheart, if Bill Cosby hasn't sexually assaulted you yet, you can tell us. He's been so busy, and it's definitely not because he doesn't want to. Just be patient.

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Core competencies
Posted by Ben on 11.20.14

You know what? I'm just sick, sick to my, I don't know, but it sickens me, when every time I turn on the TV news or open up the paper news I have to simultaneous see and hear, or read, about bad sex in fiction. Why can't there be programs or articles about good sex in fiction once in a while? You know? Some good news now and then?

I know this is possible because there are well done sex scenes in such works of fiction as Tlooth (and possibly Cigarettes by the same author? but I haven't read it in a while) and Springer's Progress. Perhaps, though, you can all mention worthy works of fiction in the comments (I think it would be more interesting if one limited one's selections to works of fiction whose overall thrust (yes, that's right) is not erotic or pornographic, but rather belongs to the same gross categorization as the works generally criticized in the Bad Sex in Fiction award, but, you know, whatever).

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Bags Full
Posted by Ogged on 11.20.14

Yes, yes, that's rather unpleasant. His comment about the determination of teenagers is right on.

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Posted by Ogged on 11.20.14

I can't say I have my finger on the pulse of the white working class (WWC), but this seems like a really solid point from Drum.

So who does the WWC take out its anger on? Largely, the answer is the poor. In particular, the undeserving poor. Liberals may hate this distinction, but it doesn't matter if we hate it. Lots of ordinary people make this distinction as a matter of simple common sense, and the WWC makes it more than any. That's because they're closer to it. For them, the poor aren't merely a set of statistics or a cause to be championed. They're the folks next door who don't do a lick of work but somehow keep getting government checks paid for by their tax dollars. For a lot of members of the WWC, this is personal in a way it just isn't for the kind of people who read this blog.

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Posted by Ogged on 11.20.14

Speaking of cabs, this piece on The Knowledge, London's famous test for cab drivers, is a great read: some history, psychology, arcana, and personal drama. Worth the few minutes to read it.

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Mo Money
Posted by Ogged on 11.19.14

Lewis is a bit glib about the possible effects of the superrich on politics (what about those taxes, and how likely are they to go up?), but the survey of research and anecdotes about what unhappy assholes the very rich are was pretty satisfying.

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Not A Good Week For Rhymes-With-Uber
Posted by Ogged on 11.19.14

Apparently Uber doesn't limit its "hardball tactics" to its business competitors. (Buzzfeed with the scoops, eh?) One exec suggested using oppo researchers to go after critical reporters' "families" and "personal lives" and another exec used the service to track and confront a reporter. I've happily used Uber in the past, but this is (way) too much.

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Hi Everybody
Posted by Heebie-Geebie on 11.19.14

Introducing Rascal Geebie, born 8 lbs, 7 oz, at 8:41 pm last night.


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