If we’re all going to be disagreeing more, we should be careful to do it well. What does it mean to disagree well? Most readers can tell the difference between mere name-calling and a carefully reasoned refutation, but I think it would help to put names on the intermediate stages. So here’s an attempt at a disagreement hierarchy:
Source: How to Disagree
Many of the points mark the middle of an age range that scientists have identified, which means they are all determined by averages. Some are also surveys, not controlled trials, so there is a possibility the self-reports don’t capture the most accurate picture.But in many cases, the numbers keep cropping up for a reason, which is that life isn’t a downhill slide from youth.Here’s what you have to look forward to.
Source: The peak age for beauty, wealth, and more – Business Insider
Former medical student Paulo Serodio is suing the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey, claiming he was harassed and suspended for defining himself as a white African-American. Born and raised in Mozambique and now a naturalized U.S. citizen, Serodio, 45, is asking for reinstatement at the school and monetary damages in the lawsuit filed Monday in U.S. District Court in New Jersey.
Light-skinned Serodio’s problems began during a medical school class exercise, in which each student was asked to define themselves for a discussion on culture and medicine. After Serodio labeled himself as a white African-American, another student said she was offended by his comments and that, because of his white skin, was not an African-American. Serodio said he is a third-generation African of Portuguese ethnicity whose great-grandfather emigrated to Mozambique. He came to the U.S. in 1984 after being accepted at New York University.
The lawsuit claims Serodio began to be harassed by other students who sought disciplinary action against him for his statement in class, but was never given a chance to defend his views against the complaints.
via Louisville City Hall Examiner: Can a white guy be African-American?.
Continue reading “Can a white guy be African-American?”
Norwegians spend the most time at leisure, just over a quarter of their day, while at the low end, Mexicans spend just 16 percent of their time having fun.
The French still win in the sleeping and eating categories, spending on average nearly 9 hours a day in bed. For the French, leisure continues in the waking hours, with more than 2 hours a day spent eating and drinking — nearly twice as much time at the table as Americans, Canadians or Mexicans.
Americans also like their sleep, spending some 8.5 hours a day doing just that.
via Survey: French Excel at Eating, Sleeping – TIME. Continue reading “French Excel at Eating, Sleeping”
As many as 4 million Americans now practice Buddhism, surpassing the total of Episcopalians. Of these Buddhists, half have post-graduate degrees, according to one survey.
Four years ago, I joined a Buddhist meditation class and began talking to (and reading books by) intellectuals sympathetic to Buddhism. Eventually, and regretfully, I concluded that Buddhism is not much more rational than the Catholicism I lapsed from in my youth; Buddhism’s moral and metaphysical worldview cannot easily be reconciled with science—or, more generally, with modern humanistic values.
All religions, including Buddhism, stem from our narcissistic wish to believe that the universe was created for our benefit, as a stage for our spiritual quests. In contrast, science tells us that we are incidental, accidental. Far from being the raison d’être of the universe, we appeared through sheer happenstance, and we could vanish in the same way. This is not a comforting viewpoint, but science, unlike religion, seeks truth regardless of how it makes us feel. Buddhism raises radical questions about our inner and outer reality, but it is finally not radical enough to accommodate science’s disturbing perspective. The remaining question is whether any form of spirituality can.
via Why I ditched Buddhism. – By John Horgan – Slate Magazine.
Marrying for love is a relatively recent phenomenon. For centuries, marriages were arranged affairs, aligning families for economic or political purposes or simply pooling the resources of those scraping by.
Today, while most of us marry for romantic reasons, marriage at its core is still a financial union. So much of what we want — or don’t want — out of life boils down to dollars and cents, whether it’s how hard we choose to work, how much we consume or how much we save. For some people, it’s working 80-hour weeks to finance a third home and country club membership; for others, it means cutting back on office hours to spend more time with the family.
“A lot of the debates people have about money are code for how we want to live our lives,” said Betsey Stevenson, assistant professor of business and public policy at the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School, who researches the economics of marriage and divorce. “A lot of the choices we make in how we want to live our lives involve how we spend our money.”
The Key to Wedded Bliss? Money Matters – NYTimes.com.