U.S. Politics and the "Religion Problem"

Former Obama White House staffer Michael Wear has caused a stir while promoting his recent book Reclaiming Hope. In an interview with Emma Green for the Atlantic, Wear commented on the fact that 81 percent of white evangelicals voted for Donald Trump. Wear lamented that the Democrats, in his view, did not make much of an effort to reach out to people of faith.

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Who Is My Neighbor?

A modern retelling of Jesus' parable

An attorney stood and asked Jesus, "Teacher, what must I do to inherit eternal life?"

Jesus replied, "What is written in the law? How do you read it?"

And he answered, "You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, all your strength, and all your mind; and love your neighbor as yourself."

Jesus said, "You have answered well. Do this and you shall live."

But wanting to justify himself, the attorney asked, "And who is my neighbor?"

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Weekend Reads 1/14/17

Attributing the DNC Hacks to Russia

If the government is going to take public action against a cyberattack, it needs to make its evidence public. But releasing secret evidence might get people killed, and it would make any future confidentiality assurances we make to human sources completely non-credible. This problem isn't going away; secrecy helps the intelligence community, but it wounds our democracy.

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Are Minimum Wage Jobs Meant for Teenagers?

Two million American workers will be seeing bigger paychecks after their states voted in November to raise the minimum wage. By 2020 the minimum hourly wage is scheduled to go up to $12 per hour in Arizona, Colorado, and Maine, and $13.50 in Washington.

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Persuading a Climate Skeptic

Dilbert cartoonist Scott Adams is at it again. Fresh from congratulating himself for predicting Donald Trump's victory, Adams is applying his "persuasion filter" to climate science. His premise is simple.

I can’t tell which argument is right. I’m not smart enough to evaluate this sort of topic. But if we are looking at the persuasion dimension alone, one of these is far stronger persuasion than the other.

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Weekend Reads 1/7/17

Why One Neuroscientist Started Blasting His Core

If stress is controlled by these few cortical areas—the part of the brain that deals in high-level executive functioning, our beliefs and existential understandings of ourselves—why would any sort of body movement play a part in decreasing stress?

The Death Of Expertise

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The Consequences of Fake News

If you're on Facebook, you've probably seen some of the breathless, clickbaity political headlines. Republicans Ban First Amendment in Congress or California Democrats Legalize Child Prostitution.

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Weekend Reads 12/31/16

Ready for flooding: Boston analyzes how to tackle climate change

Damage from flooding, too, will increase as the climate warms. Around the middle of the century, the report projects that about seven percent of the city could be under water during one-in-10-year rainstorms unless the storm water system is improved. That includes portions of the subways and major highways, some of which are designated evacuation routes.

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Climate Change: The Human Fingerprint

How do we know global warming is caused by the 30 billion tons of CO2 spewed into the atmosphere by human activity? Here are ten pieces of evidence. Click the image for additional information from Skeptical Science.



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