“To these young tech workers who flock to the festival, Burning Man reinforces and fosters the idea that they can remake the world without anyone else’s input.”

Keith A. Spencer: … Burning Man is supposed to be a fun, liberating world all its own. But it isn’t. The top-down, do what you want, radically express yourself and fuck everyone else worldview is precisely why Burning Man is so appealing to the Silicon Valley technocratic scions. To these young tech workers — mostly […]

“Religion was the race’s first (and worst) attempt to make sense of reality.”

Christopher Hitchens: Religion invents a problem where none exists by describing the wicked as also made in the image of god and the sexually nonconformist as existing in a state of incurable mortal sin that can incidentally cause floods and earthquakes. How did such evil nonsense ever come to be so influential? And why are […]

“Race is a medieval European invention.”

Meredith Talusan: The fundamental difference between Dolezal’s actions and trans people’s is that her decision to identify as black was an active choice, whereas transgender people’s decision to transition is almost always involuntary. Transitioning is the product of a fundamental aspect of our humanity – gender – being foisted upon us over and over again […]

“The unskilled are motivated to ignore (be unaware of) their poor performance so that they can feel better about themselves.”

Previous research found that poor performers tend to overestimate how well their performance compares to others’. This unskilled and unaware effect has been attributed to poor performers’ lack of metacognitive ability to realize their ineptitude. We contend that the unskilled are motivated to ignore (be unaware of) their poor performance so that they can feel […]

“At some point in their lives, about 5 percent of people hear voices or see things that others cannot perceive.”

John McGrath / the Queensland Brain Institute: We used to think that only people with psychosis heard voices or had delusions, but now we know that otherwise healthy, high-functioning people also report these experiences. Of those who have these experiences, a third only have them once and another third only have two-to-five episodes across their […]

“The problem of political irrationality is the greatest social problem humanity faces.”

Michael Huemer: The problem of political irrationality is the greatest social problem humanity faces. It is a greater problem than crime, drug addiction, or even world poverty, because it is a problem that prevents us from solving other problems. Before we can solve the problem of poverty, we must first have correct beliefs about poverty, […]