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Weekend reads 11/3/2018

Study: Tetris is a great distraction for easing an anxious mind

One group played the standard adaptive version of the game, where the difficulty level increased as their skill level did. A second group played a version that was too easy, with the blocks dropping so slowly as to induce boredom. The third group played the most challenging version of the game, with rapidly dropping blocks designed to create a sense of frustration. After playing, the subjects filled out a survey rating their emotional state.

As Sweeny and her colleagues had hypothesized, the subjects in the first group were far more likely to achieve a state of flow and, therefore, experienced less anxiety and stress.

Donald Trump’s race-baiting closing argument going into Election Day, explained

At an October rally in Texas for Republican Sen. Ted Cruz, Trump made explicit what has been implicitly clear for years: “I’m a nationalist,” he declared proudly in front of thousands of cheering Trump supporters, encouraging them to vote Republican. White supremacists greeted the statement with enthusiasm.

How Anti-Semites Hear Trump

Trump’s suggestion that globalists wield outsize power in finance and government, and that they are opponents of America’s true patriots, as Ben Zimmer has written, adds to a long history of similar claims. And although Trump himself has not connected the term to Jews, he is employing language used by others who have. Soviet Premier Joseph Stalin, for example, suggested that Jewish “cosmopolitans” were too connected to “bourgeois Western influences” and not connected enough to Soviet culture.

A tale of two synagogues

Sixty years ago, bombers hoped to galvanize Southern whites around white nationalist goals, but they failed. The outpouring of support for the Jewish community from the Atlanta mayor and others gave greater momentum to the civil rights movement. Faith groups and civic leaders were outspoken and courageous and risked their own lives.

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