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Posts tagged "Freakonomics"

<I>Soul Possession:</I> Just How Much Is Your Soul Worth?

Soul Possession: Just How Much Is Your Soul Worth?

The Freakonomics crew put out a new podcast on selling souls this week, and boy was it a doozie. They featured a Christian from Oklahoma who boldly offered any atheist/skeptic/taker $50 for ownership of his soul. Sure enough, through the comments board on the Freakonomics webpage, he found a skeptic seller, and the two exchanged […]

Another Week Ends: Zeitgeistlichkeit, Atheist Religiosity, Freakonomic Fathers, Ralph Erskine, MJ, Devo's Paradox, Hunger Games, Deep Blue Sea, and Hoarders

Another Week Ends: Zeitgeistlichkeit, Atheist Religiosity, Freakonomic Fathers, Ralph Erskine, MJ, Devo’s Paradox, Hunger Games, Deep Blue Sea, and Hoarders

1. A pair of terrific book reviews have appeared in The NY Times over the last couple weeks, the first being Generation X author Douglas Coupland‘s inspiring riff on Hari Kunzu’s opus, Gods Without Men, and the exciting new genre it epitomizes (“Translit”). Ironically enough, he makes a number of Twitter-ready observations: [We are living […]

Another Week Ends: Joseph Mills, Commitment Devices, Anxiety Rights, Bible Rescue, Imposter Syndrome, Hitch on Chesterton, Elmer Bernstein and Liz Lemon

Another Week Ends: Joseph Mills, Commitment Devices, Anxiety Rights, Bible Rescue, Imposter Syndrome, Hitch on Chesterton, Elmer Bernstein and Liz Lemon

1. One of the many things to adore about David Foster Wallace’s A Supposedly Fun Thing I’ll Never Do Again is the cover (of the US edition). The collage manages to capture the torrential intellect at the heart of that wonderful collection without losing the humor. But it wasn’t until this past week that I […]

Another Week Ends: NeuroLewis and NeuroClark, Common Enemies, Absent Fathers, Zombie Fiction, Jarvis Cocker, Noel Gallagher, Sacred Facial Hair and Pixar

Another Week Ends: NeuroLewis and NeuroClark, Common Enemies, Absent Fathers, Zombie Fiction, Jarvis Cocker, Noel Gallagher, Sacred Facial Hair and Pixar

1. Another superb volley in David Brooks’ crusade for a more compassionate view of human fallibility appeared in The NY Times this week, “Who You Are,” in which he salutes Nobel Prize winner Daniel Kahneman’s invaluable contribution to social psychology. Brooks goes so far as to call Kahneman and his research partner Amos Tversky, “the […]

Another Week Ends: Brooks on Empathy, more Quiet Beatle, American Commandments, Kaling on Chick Flicks, Meth to Master, Pre-Marital Hanky Panky, Psycho Congress, Tweedy & Ryan Adams

Another Week Ends: Brooks on Empathy, more Quiet Beatle, American Commandments, Kaling on Chick Flicks, Meth to Master, Pre-Marital Hanky Panky, Psycho Congress, Tweedy & Ryan Adams

1. David Brooks continues with his one-man campaign for a more realistic conception of human nature, and the implications it might have on ethical behavior, in his new column, “The Limits of Empathy.” This time he focuses on the question of motivation, exploring how easily/frequently something as ‘good’ as empathy is subordinated to self-interest (and laziness), ht […]

Adult Adoption and the Japanese Church of Scionology

Adult Adoption and the Japanese Church of Scionology

Leave it to the Freakonomics guys to report on one of the more fascinating, and theologically helpful, phenomena going on in the modern world in their recent radio show, “The Church of Scionology“, in which they tackle the subject of adult male adoption in Japan. The New Testament, as we all know, is rife with […]

Suicidal Paradoxes and the Tragedy of Expectations

Suicidal Paradoxes and the Tragedy of Expectations

Fascinating if very sobering transcript of a recent radio broadcast over on the Freakonomics site about the so-called “Suicide Paradox.” As the commentators make clear, the attempt to “make sense” of suicide is a dodgy task from the get-go – if you know someone who has been touched by it, you know that suicide is […]

Another Week Ends: Twittercide, Paul Simon, Reality TV, Reasons To Quit, Better Book Titles, Community & Shallow Small Groups

Another Week Ends: Twittercide, Paul Simon, Reality TV, Reasons To Quit, Better Book Titles, Community & Shallow Small Groups

1. A great little editorial on Slate about the recent instances of “Twittercide” committed by folks as wide-ranging as Gilbert Gottfried, Tucker Carlson, Keith Olbermann, and Rashard Mendenhall. The author wisely points out how silly it is to blame the medium – its immediacy is a big part of its genius after all – that […]

Why Does Driving Bring Out The Worst In People?

Why Does Driving Bring Out The Worst In People?

A revealing post over at the NY Times freakonomics blog, where Stephen Dubner writes (ht JD): “The same person who might flip you off while ensconced in his or her car would almost certainly never do the same while passing you on a sidewalk. A parallel observation: I’ve often found that people who can be […]