Black people in most US cities are subject to double the level of heat stress as their white counterparts. Rates of suicide rise with temperature and smog as well.

A new study covered by BBC News finds that black people in most US cities are “subject to double the level of heat stress as their white counterparts”. It says the researchers concluded differences were not explained by poverty, but by historic racism and segregation, meaning that people of color more generally “live in areas with fewer green spaces and …

Pseudo issues and real discourse; e.g. longer work hours lead to more deaths

Excerpt from Hamilton Nolan, In These Times, June 2021 There is much hand-wringing today over the idea that misinformation and conspiracy theories and omnipresent propaganda have created a situation in which Americans don’t seem to have a single set of mutually agreed upon facts. That is true. But it does not capture an even more elementary flaw in what we are doing. We …

How Money Affects Psychology, How the Super-Rich Really Live And How Their Wealth Harms Us

To understand how money affects politics, we need to understand how money affects psychology.APRIL 4, 2021, Michael Mechanic, Senior editor at Mother Jones, adapted from his forthcoming book, Jackpot: How the Super-Rich Really Live―And How Their Wealth Harms Us Paul piff just landed on Park Place. I own it. “Shit,” he says. I also own three railroads, a couple of high-rent monopolies, and …

Getting past our own and others biases, to effect real change

Center for Action and Contemplation, 3/3/2021 Learning how to see our biases is a psychological exercise, but one with immediate theological and social implications. It demands self-knowledge and the crucial need to recognize (1) when we are in denial about our own shadow and capacity for illusion; (2) our capacity to project our own fears and shadows onto other people …

Anger emerges from a provocation, the person’s interpretation of the provocation, and their mood at the time. Interpret and decide what it means to you first.

Anger emerges from three interacting factors: a provocation, the person’s interpretation of the provocation, and their mood at the time. Before you actually get angry, you interpret that provocation. You decide what it means to you, and whether or not you can cope with it. These thoughts we have when provoked matter a great deal. When you catastrophise (ie, blow things out of proportion), …

54% of Westerners see climate change as a “very serious” problem

The consensus to invest more in conservation is up to 92% of voters now, from 84% in 2011, and is nearly equal across the Western states. Those feelings also cross the partisan spectrum, Metz said, with 98% of Democrats wanting more protection and 87% of Republicans, according to new results from a long-term, eight-state poll run by Colorado College.  Neighborhoods with …

Why and how conspiracy theories work

Voltaire once said: “Those who can make you believe absurdities, can make you commit atrocities” — and he was right. https://www.nytimes.com/2021/02/03/opinion/qanon-conspiracy-theories.html – Believers in conspiracies will often automatically dismiss factual claims disputing their beliefs. Jovan Byford, a senior lecturer in psychology at the Open University in England, makes the case that Conspiracy theories seduce not so much through the power of argument, but …

What white grievance are Dems supposed to address? Our problems have been generated by feeding inequality for decades and centuries.

Yes Magazine, Jan 2021. See The Spirit Level. Pickett & Wilkinson. During Obama’s presidency and the lead-up to Trump white Americans gained about 4 million jobs and more than $5,000 in real (inflation-adjusted) median family income from 2010 to 2017—much more than Black, Latinx, and Native Americans gained. Economic improvement was especially strong in the upper Midwest, which is 80% White. …

Systematizers

While everyone has a Systemizing Mechanism, it’s tuned especially high in people who are inventors and in those drawn to fields like science, engineering, music, competitive sports, high-level business and often, too, in people with autism. By Christine Kenneally, NY Times Book Review, Dec 2020 THE PATTERN SEEKERSHow Autism Drives Human InventionBy Simon Baron-Cohen At the end of the 20th …

The body keeps score, with negative experiences in childhood. But even small changes can help. Trauma can be inherited. We need to understand what we’re passing on

“ACEs” referred to three specific kinds of adversity children faced in the home environment—various forms of physical and emotional abuse, neglect, and household dysfunction. The key findings of dozens of studies using the original ACEs data are: (1) ACEs are quite common, even among a middle-class population: more than two-thirds of the population report experiencing one ACE, and nearly a …