Monday, February 11, 2008

Speedlinking 2/11/08

Quote of the day:

"An adventure is only an inconvenience rightly considered. An inconvenience is an adventure wrongly considered."
~ C.K. Chesterton

Image of the day:

~ Let's Get Nasty -- "Got your gym bag handy? Good, because after reading this article, you'll want to head straight to the gym to try out one of these 5 great heavy-loading techniques."
~ Sugar Substitutes May Contribute to Weight Gain -- "Purdue researchers report that saccharin altered the ability of rats to control their appetites. However, the head of an artificial sweetener trade group scoffed at the findings, saying they don't necessarily translate to humans." Of course they scoff, but similar research has shown the same thing with aspartame. See below for an alternate point of view on artificial sweeteners.
~ How to Keep Your Knees Out on Squats -- "Why You Must Keep Your Knees Out. It’s easier to break parallel when your knees are out: your stomach doesn’t get in the way of your legs. Knees out also means more strength and less chance of injury."
~ Low-Calorie Sweeteners Are Helpful In Weight Control, Confirmed By Study -- "A recent review of the scientific literature concluded that low-calorie (or no-calorie) sweeteners may be of help in resolving the obesity problem. Although they are not magic bullets, low-calorie sweeteners in beverages and foods can help people reduce their calorie (energy) intakes."
~ The Hockey Workout: Finding Strength in Balance -- "When a guy is preparing Sid the Kid Crosby physically for on ice performance, chances are good that he knows what he’s talking about. Mike Kadar, head strength coach for the NHL’s Pittsburgh Penguins described recently in a Men’s Fitness article a few off-ice exercises used by his players to stay in strong hockey form. However, these exercises aren’t exclusively for professional hockey players. Anyone can benefit from once incorporated into their routine." One arm snatches rock!
~ Longer Telomeres Mean Longer Life -- "If you need proof that exercise helps to keep you young, look at the exciting study from King's College in London, England reported in the Archives of Internal Medicine (January 28, 2008). The researchers showed that people who exercise regularly have telomeres in the DNA of their white blood cells that are longer than those of couch potatoes. White blood cell telomeres shorten over time and serve as a marker of a person's biological age."
~ Cross Training: Your Best Bet for Fitness -- "A physical fitness routine does not mean just one type of exercise over and over again. In order to optimize your fitness, you need to have a well-rounded workout regimen. It will decrease your boredom with your workout routine, and more importantly, it will workout all of your muscle groups and your body will be in better shape overall."
~ Flu Vaccine Outgunned By Two Different Strains -- "While everyone knows that someone who gets the flu vaccine can still get the flu, this flu season may hit more people harder than previous years." Never had a flu shot, haven't had the flu in more than 10 years.
~ The Skinny on “Skinny Bitch'’ -- "Does a popular diet book prey on women's insecurities?"

~ Brainy people have a higher chance of developing an alcohol problem, say scientists -- "Intelligent people are more likely to develop alcohol-related health problems than their less brainy counterparts, a study has found. Middle-class women are particularly likely to drink heavily in their 30s - putting them at risk of liver disease and certain types of cancer."
~ Pavlovian-Instrumental Transfer in Humans -- "In behavioral neuroscience, we use a lot of animal models. We assume that these animal models have features that are the same or similar to features of humans. However, it is always reassuring when someone gets around to proving that this assumption is accurate."
~ Comment on Psychedelic Science by Romeo Vitelli -- "The Mind Hacks blog has tipped me off to a 1997 documentary on the history of the use of psychedelic drugs for medical purposes. The documentary was produced by Bill Eagles and originally broadcast on the BBC program “Horizon.” It is now available, in its entirety (48 min) at Google Video."
~ Want Success? Learn to Listen -- "If you ask most people what the opposite of talking is, they will say it is listening. The truth, though, is that the opposite of talking is waiting to talk. Pay attention to conversations and you will see that there is very little listening going on. Each person is waiting to speak their mind, nearly heedless of what the other person is really saying."
~ Eat Your Projections -- "Want to get full real fast? Just learn to eat your projections."
~ Comfortably Numb-er [The Corpus Callosum] -- "Anyway. wrote a book, Comfortably Numb: How Psychiatry is Medicating a Nation. Now he has written an article in the Washington Post: Healing a Troubled Mind Takes More Than a Pill."
~ T.H.U.M.P. - 5 Ways to Deal with Irresponsible People -- "These individuals are constantly late, they don’t follow instructions, they miss appointments, they forget to call, they make drastically uninformed decisions, and they just generally create negativity and angst for the rest of us."
~ men and obesity -- "finally, here is the long-promised post on the topic of men and obesity. the U.S. national eating disorders association mentions a number of behaviours, physical problems and emotions experienced by men with binge eating disorder. let’s look at a few of them."
~ 7 Steps to Turn Your Self-Improvement Desires Into Reality -- "How many times have we told ourselves in complete earnestness, “I’m going to be more organized and productive from now on.”? Or that the diet starts tomorrow? Or that we’re going to make a real effort to exercise now?"
~ 5 Time Tested Techniques to Control and Calm Your Mind -- "It is no secret that your thoughts influence your effectiveness and your feelings, amongst other things. In short, they affect the quality of your life. Therefore, mental skills are not merely a luxury – they’re a necessity."


~ Child-Man in the Promised Land -- "Today’s single young men hang out in a hormonal limbo between adolescence and adulthood."
~ Critical Condition -- "Book reviewing may seem in reasonable health. But the authority of critics is being undermined by a raucous blogging culture and an increasingly commercial publishing industry. Literary journalism needs to get better if it is to survive."
~ The right way to "do God" -- "How should we "do God"? The question occurs to me as I watch the run-up to the presidential elections across the pond. A Mormon (Mitt Romney), an evangelical Christian (Mike Huckabee) and a devout Christian in the American black church tradition (Barack Obama) are hoping to become the next president of the United States. What will their religion bring to the table?" Posted before Romney dropped out.
~ On the History of Imperialism Theory -- "In his illuminating survey, “The Imperialist World System: Paul Baran’s Political Economy of Growth After Fifty Years” (Monthly Review, May 2007), John Bellamy Foster remarks that “The concept of the imperialist world system in today’s predominant sense of the extreme economic exploitation of periphery by center, creating a widening gap between rich and poor countries....had its genesis in the 1950s, especially with the publication fifty years ago of Paul Baran’s Political Economy of Growth.” While acknowledging that traces of such a concept could be found in Marx and Lenin, he feels that “The classical Marxist approach to the worldwide spread of capitalist relations has often been characterized as a crude theory of linear stages of development” whereby the less developed countries would necessarily traverse the same path as the more developed ones."
~ Rimbaud was no genius -- "The vagabond prodigy promised greatness, but never delivered."
~ Deepak Chopra: When God Splits His Vote -- "It's been said that the fundamentalist movement is demoralized and fractured during this election cycle. The Republicans are gaining a candidate, John McCain, who is viewed suspiciously by the religious right, even after a series of half-hearted capitulations on his part. As a commentator remarked recently, if you aren't a thousand per cent pure, the religious right disapproves."
~ Election 2008: Hillary Clinton Is Down But Not Out -- "As Barack Obama wins five weekend contests, Hillary Clinton reorganizes and plans for the Texas, Ohio, and Penn. primaries."
~ What Dems Need to Know About John McCain -- "A former GOP operative gives the background on what it will take to compete with the likely GOP nominee."
~ Winehouse rules Grammys, but Hancock shocks -- "British pop singer Amy Winehouse, whose rapid decline into an abyss of drug abuse shocked fans last year, won five Grammy Awards on Sunday after taking a break from rehab to perform at the show from London." In case anyone cares about the Grammys."

~ Environment: Have Humans Caused the Earth to Enter a New Epoch? -- "The Anthropocene epoch would mark the period when humans became the predominant force over the Earth's environment."
~ Date Set for Presidential Candidate Debate on Science 2008 -- "The organizers of Science Debate 2008 have sent invitations to the leading presidential candidates in both parties for an April 18 debate that will focus on hot-button science issues like evolution, climate change and stem cell research."
~ Madagascar's Tortoises Are Crawling Toward Extinction, Groups Say -- "Madagascar's turtles and tortoises, which rank among the most endangered reptiles on earth, will continue to crawl steadily toward extinction unless major conservation measure are enacted, according to a recent assessment. The researchers said there is still hope to save these ancient animals, but time is running out as their habitat continues to shrink and illegal hunting worsens."
~ Antarctic Ice Shelf Collapse Blamed On More Than Climate Change -- "When the Larsen B Ice Shelf in Antarctica collapsed in 2002, the event appeared to be a sudden response to climate change, and this long, fringing ice shelf in the north west part of the Weddell Sea was assumed to be the latest in a long line of victims of Antarctic summer heat waves linked to Global Warming. However scientists now say that the shelf was already teetering on collapse before the final summer. Global warming had a major part to play in the collapse, but it is only one in a number of contributory factors."
~ Deforestation May Make Humans More Vulnerable To Infection -- "A new study suggests that socioeconomic factors best explain patterns of the infectious disease American Cutaneous Leishmaniasis in Costa Rica. Contrary to the established belief that deforestation reduces the risk of infection, the research shows that deforestation may actually make socially marginalized human populations more vulnerable to infection."
~ Spitzer Catches Young Stars in Their Baby Blanket of Dust -- "Newborn stars peek out from beneath their natal blanket of dust in this dynamic image of the Rho Ophiuchi dark cloud from NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope."
~ Starbucks Switches to Free AT&T Wi-Fi -- "Starbucks Corp. and AT&T Inc. will start offering a mix of free and paid wireless Internet service in most of the international coffee retailer's U.S. shops, beginning this spring. The move announced Monday ends a six-year partnership T-Mobile, which did not include free Wi-Fi and charged higher fees than AT&T will."
~ Latest Supercomputer Calculations Support the Six-Quark Theory -- "A new calculation, reported in the January 25, 2008 issue of Physical Review Letters, confirms the six-quark theory of particle-anti-particle asymmetry. This is the first complete calculation of this phenomenon to employ a highly accurate description of the quarks that adds a fifth dimension beyond those of space and time."

~ The Pop Culture Manifesto -- "Philosophy is not popular culture – not an artifact or subject of mass interest and appreciation: but it could be. At various times in the past indeed it was. Arguably rocketry and the space program were also elements of popular culture for a time in America, as dinosaurs and the internet are now. Astronomy and computer programming clearly could become popular culture. So could philosophy. Freud and Einstein were among the People/VH-1 top two hundred popular culture icons. Why not Russell and Sartre?" William Irwin is a noted anti-Wilberian integralist.
~ Socialism vs classical liberalism -- "Recently, a fun little debate over universal health care went down on the ~C4Chaos blog, and it got me to thinking about how one’s beliefs about human intelligence affect one’s political outlook."
~ Review: Alan Wallace - Hidden Dimensions: The Unification of Physics and Consciousness -- "There is a quiet revolution afoot. The last century has witnessed Buddhists and quantum physicists quietly moving into perigee, however unwittingly until the last twenty years. In Hidden Dimensions: The Unification of Physics and Consciousness (New York: Columbia University Press, 2007. Cloth, 176 Pages), B. Alan Wallace gives an incisive portrayal of this merging of minds and argues that these two paths are not just complementary—they are intimately related."
~ Insomnia -- "I normally sleep very well, and if I don’t get enough sleep it is usually by choice, because something else seems more interesting or important. But there are times when I have trouble falling asleep as well. (Although that too is usually self-afflicted, through not having questioned beliefs coming up for me, resisting experience, lack of physical activity, and so on.)"
~ I’m already there… -- "I’ve posted this quotation by Honen before, but it bears repeating all by itself. Honen, who was Shinran’s teacher, and started the whole Pure Land Buddhist movement, once was quoted as saying: Where one is to receive something from another, which is better, to have already received, or not yet to have received? I, GenkÅ«*, repeat the nembutsu as if I had already received [birth in the Pure Land of Amida]."
~ The Tragedy of the Panchen Lama -- Reuters reports that thousands of Buddhist monks and villagers gathered in northwest China over the weekend to commemorate the birthday of the 10th Panchen Lama of Tibet, Choekyi Gyaltsen."
~ Busting the Myths of Canadian Health Care -- "I've been recently riffing on the issue of universal health care on this blog. My post, Is Universal Health Care Totalitarian Coercion, had generated insightful and heated discussions on the subject. As usual, most of the discussions are driven by ideological differences. Nothing wrong with that. More often than not, we take sides on issues based on our ideology."
~ Sufi Universal Worship Service -- "Today I attended a Universal Worship service with members of the Sufi Order International in New York. It was a wonderful and rejuvenating service, where candles were lit for all the major religious traditions in the world — Hinduism, Buddhism, Zoroastrianism, Native American traditions, the Goddess traditions, Taoism, Judaism, Christianity, and Islam — with a view to viewing them all as valid streams from the same Ocean." Sounds cool.

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