October 18, 2014 Leave a comment
1) The New Yorker’s Maria Konnikova on Walter Mischel (the marshmallow self control guy)
2) Really interesting NYT profile of super-far-right Kansas Secretary of State, Kris Kobach
3) That would be so awesome if the ability to effectively grow Alzheimer’s brain cells in the lab actually leads us much more quickly to a cure or effective prevention.
4) So there was a Wire reunion and you can watch it.
5) Vox says this attack ad makes the Willie Horton ad look tame. I think they are right. To add insult to injury, the Republicans actually put this policy in place.
6) On what grade level of reading ability are presidents’ speeches over time.
7) Did the pro-life movement actually lead to more single moms? Maybe.
8) Interesting Ozy piece on how cancer may ultimately be an ineradicable part of life. Actually reminded me of one of my favorite science fiction works ever, Robert Sawyer’s Calculating God, in which the nature of cancer plays a fundamental role.
9) The keyboards from early IBM PC’s (my dad had one) were simply the awesomest.
10) James Surowiecki on the capitalism and streaming entertainment services.
11) Loved this description of Curb Your Enthusiasm from a recent Larry David appearance:
“ ‘Curb’ is about what’s beneath the surface of social intercourse, the things we think about and can’t say,” David told Remnick. “I’m normal. If I said the things he does”—he, of course, being the Larry David who goes around eating his in-laws’ manger scene, inviting a sex offender to a Seder, and teaching kids how to draw swastikas—“I’d be beaten up. He’s a sociopath!” A pause. “But I’m thinking them!”
So is everyone else, and that’s the brilliance of “Curb.” The show exists to prove how thin the veneer of social custom and courtesy really is, and to reveal the inner sociopath that we are supposed, at all costs, to suppress.
12) 538 looks at which diet will help you lose the most weight. Easy, the one that is easiest for you to stay on.
13) How to get the right kind of sleep depending upon what your test the next day will be on. Seriously.
14) Really liked this TNR piece on how judges should respond to burdensome laws on the right to vote and the right to abortion when legislators are so clearly lying about their actual intent:
But if courts cannot, and should not, prove deliberate discrimination, they can still apply objective balancing tests, to weigh the benefits of a law against its costs. When they do, the relevant question changes: judges no longer ask whether a legislature’s motivation was to limit abortion or to protect patient safety, but whether such a law can be justified by a reasonable person who takes both values seriously. In an important sense, this inquiry is far less fraught and far more coherent—no mind-reading necessary.
15) Andrew Sullivan on the latest out of the Vatican