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Comment One of the first (NOT post, dammit) (Score 1) 131

I actually looked up "twerking" on Google yesterday, and the first hit was from OED.

I didn't realise it at the time, but I was likely amongst the first few people to see the OED entry--and had no idea that it had been added the same day--until I saw this story.

I realise that times and language change, but, yeah, I suppose that I am feeling a bit of that "Stop the Internet, I want to get off thing" right now.

Comment Re:Twerking? (Score 1) 131

The mistake is in caring about keeping up with trends or slang or "what's cool" in the first place.

Write your own life story, and quit worrying about what other people say or think. You'll be surprised
how much happiness is linked with this approach.

Thanks, I think I needed that this morning.

User Journal

Journal Journal: Rodeo Clown Foreign Policy Gets No Respect 4

Daladier, a classic leftist politician of the era, became Prime Minister three times. French politics were rough and tumble, with alliances made and dissolved, and little attention paid to foreign policy. There was a general refusal to acknowledge that Germany was re-arming and preparing for another round. Daladier was a voice in the wilderness. He saw the threat coming from Ger

Comment Re:I resemble that remark (Score 1) 81

Governments are subservient to the economic powers that created them.

Governments are composed of individuals, who make decisions, no? So, while I don't think the laws of Economics are avoidable, I don't think that's an excuse for cheerfully unethical/immoral decisions.


Study Suggests Violent Video Games May Make Teens Less Violent 120

barlevg writes "A new paper is out in the Journal of Youth and Adolescence which shows no positive correlation between playing violent video games and acts of aggression. The study of 377 children with attention deficit and depressive symptoms in fact showed a slight negative correlation between video game-playing and aggressive behavior such as bullying, which the researchers posit is due to the games awarding some measure of catharsis. The full paper is available online (PDF)."

Mini-Brains Grown In the Lab 170

fustakrakich sends news that researchers from the Austrian Academy of Sciences have used embryonic stem cells to grow a tiny human brain in a laboratory. The miniature brain, roughly the size of a pea, is at the same level of development as that of a 9-week-old fetus. From the BBC: "They used either embryonic stem cells or adult skin cells to produce the part of an embryo that develops into the brain and spinal cord - the neuroectoderm. This was placed in tiny droplets of gel to give a scaffold for the tissue to grow and was placed into a spinning bioreactor, a nutrient bath that supplies nutrients and oxygen. The cells were able to grow and organise themselves into separate regions of the brain, such as the cerebral cortex, the retina, and, rarely, an early hippocampus, which would be heavily involved in memory in a fully developed adult brain. The tissues reached their maximum size, about 4mm (0.1in), after two months. The 'mini-brains' have survived for nearly a year, but did not grow any larger. There is no blood supply, just brain tissue, so nutrients and oxygen cannot penetrate into the middle of the brain-like structure."

How Human Psychology Holds Back Climate Change Action 530

Hugh Pickens DOT Com writes "Cass R. Sunstein writes at Bloomberg that an understanding of human psychology — specifically, what human beings fear and what they do not — helps to explain why nations haven't insisted on more significant emissions reductions even as scientists warn that if the world continues on its current course, we will face exceedingly serious losses and threats including a significant rise in sea levels by century's end. First, people tend to be especially focused on risks or hazards that have an identifiable perpetrator, and for that reason produce outrage. 'Warmer temperatures are a product not of any particular human being or group, but the interaction between nature and countless decisions by countless people. There are no obvious devils or demons — no individuals who intend to create the harms associated with climate change.' The second obstacle is that people tend to evaluate risks by way of 'the availability heuristic,' which leads them to assess the probability of harm by asking whether a readily available example comes to mind. For example, an act of terrorism is likely to be both available and salient, and hence makes people fear that another such event will occur. A recent crime or accident can activate attention and significantly inflate people's assessment of risk. Finally, human beings are far more attentive to immediate threats than to long-term ones. They may neglect the future, seeing it as a kind of foreign country, one they may not ever visit. For this reason, they might fail to save for retirement, or they might engage in risk-taking behavior such as smoking or unhealthy eating that will harm their future selves. 'All the obstacles are daunting skepticism about the science, economic self-interest, and the difficulties of designing cost-effective approaches and obtaining an international agreement,' concludes Sunstein, 'But the world is unlikely to make much progress on climate change until the barrier of human psychology is squarely addressed.'"

Comment Re:Charges? (Score 1) 7

Maybe for some, but (as a non-gun owner) I'm mainly fetishing liberty, and really tired of those who seek to use the legal system for punishing the innocent.
Now, maybe if we could extend the definition of marriage to encompass a polygamous relationship with one's arsenal, we could find some sweet spot in the modern absurdity that can protect the simple notion of the 2nd Amendment.

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