Crowdsourced Map Documents UFO Sightings, Cryptids, and the Supernatural

1566227154012 Screen Shot 2019 08 19 at 110532 AM pngIt’s sociologically important to document where people believe the supernatural occurs, even if it’s all made up.:

If you’ve had a weird unexplainable experience, two guys in Seattle want to help you log it and track it on a global map. I have a new favorite place on the internet, and it is Liminal Earth.

Liminal Earth is a web based mapping tool designed to track the bizarre. Created by Garrett Kelly, co-founder of Hollow Earth Radio, and Jeremy Puma, a Seattle based author, their project “acts sort of like ‘Google Trends’ (which tracks sudden spikes on google search queries) for the collective unconscious,” states their website’s About page. “This map is an extension of that, because we’re trying to see if there are strange places or experiences that are actually quite common but go unnoticed because everyone is afraid to talk about this weird stuff happening to them.”

The idea is simple. It is like Atlas Obscura, but exclusively for UFOs, the supernatural, cryptids, etc.…’

Via VICE

Reason Won’t Save Us

ImagesIt’s time to accept the limits of how we think.

’In wondering what can be done to steer civilization away from the abyss, I confess to being increasingly puzzled by the central enigma of contemporary cognitive psychology: To what degree are we consciously capable of changing our minds …about major personal and social issues that should unite but invariably divide us? As a senior neurologist whose career began before CAT and MRI scans, I have come to feel that conscious reasoning, the commonly believed remedy for our social ills, is an illusion, an epiphenomenon supported by age-old mythology rather than convincing scientific evidence.…’

Via Nautilus

The Tweety Bird Test

The tweety bird test 1 1050x700How a classic Tweety Bird cartoon became a mainstay in linguistics research

’Already a cartoon classic, Canary Row became an unlikely fixture of linguistics research. Over the years, linguists have used clips of Canary Row to examine hand gestures in at least a dozen languages—and many aspects of signed languages. There are studies that compare gesticulation across languages; studies on gestures by language-learners and by multilinguals; and studies about gestures that accompany signed language. Experts in these topics say the cartoon is the most frequently used study stimulus in their fields.…’

Via JSTOR Daily

Where is my Xanax Rx? Why your doctor may be concerned about prescribing benzodiazepines

File 20191017 98632 df4e6hWhy I and other doctors are not eager to prescribe benzodiazepines for long-term use: 

’…We have a Hippocratic oath to “first do not harm.” I sometimes tell patients who insist on getting benzos: “I am not paid differently based on the medication I prescribe, and my life would be much easier not arguing with you about this medication. I do this because I care about you.”…’

Via The Conversation

I share the concerns raised in this piece and such reasoning has always guided my prescribing practice. Unfortunately, not enough psychiatrists and general practitioners are similarly concerned.

TurboTax’s 20-Year Fight to Stop Americans From Filing Their Taxes for Free

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’Virtually every rich country on Earth provides pre-completed tax-returns that you can either ignore (and pay an a
ccountant or do your own taxes), or just sign and return: after all, the government already knows what you’re earning and how much tax you paid, so they can do all the heavy lifting for your annual return.

 

But when Congress tried to create a similar program in the USA, it faced a blizzard of lobbying from the tax-prep industry, led by Intuit, a tax-prep monopolist that grew to scale by buying or merging with its competitors — growth tactics that are illegal under US antitrust law…’

Via ProPublica