…Wishing I’d attended that conference…
This is part of what makes me despair about my profession. From my position in the trenches in Boston psychiatry, you have to take my word for how influential Biederman’s influence has been on diagnostic and therapeutic practices… and how few clothes I have always thought the Emperor was wearing.
Stewart, however, politely gives Ben-Shahar a chance to explain the value of his book and his course on positive psychology. Ben-Shahar is proud that his course is the most popular one at Harvard, to which Stewart gets an audience laugh by suggesting that perhaps the real reason it is so popular is because it is easy. This results in a nervous laugh from Ben-Shahar, who retorts that his exams are “actually quite difficult.” Ben-Shahar then explains that there is now a “science of happiness” and offers a study to prove it, but an unimpressed Stewart quips, “How is that science?”
Finally, Stewart is no longer able to restrain his amazement that platitudes are considered profound at Harvard nowadays (the “Six Happiness Tips” on Ben-Shahar’s website are about acceptance of negative feelings, positive attitude, meaningful activities, being grateful, simplifying life and physical health). Stewart ends the interview in Groucho Marx fashion by saying, “It’s a fascinating subject and one that I can’t believe you are getting away with.” ‘ (AlterNet)
Esquire first thought up the idea eight years ago, but the technology was still too clunky. Since then, the Kindle has gone on sale, and the same company that invented the tech used in Amazon’s device — E Ink — is making the covers. The price, although undisclosed, is prohibitive, and Ford has been brought in as a ‘sponsor’: A moving car ad will appear on the inside cover. Esquire even had to design a battery (a ‘six-figure investment’) that was small enough to fit into a magazine and keep things running until the mags are sold. The batteries will last for 90 days.” (Wired)