The results of the most recent presidential election caused a seismic shift in American consciousness. Conservative voters in the heartland realized their power. Liberals, by contrast, saw the limits of their ideology.
But over and above these political outcomes, the real losers from that night were the so-called experts.
From a social psychological perspective, Burning Man is one of the most important—and revealing—phenomena of this generation. It’s important because, as its values spread across the globe, it has the potential to influence the course of history. It’s revealing because it shows us what we lack: like bright putty filling in the holes of a rusty bucket, it highlights what’s missing in society.
Like an extremely tall man standing on the far side of a football field, Vietnam doesn’t feel that big when you’re looking at it on Google Maps from your apartment in New York. So when I and my comrade-in-arms Aroop Mukharji booked our flight into the country, we paid little attention to which city we were flying into. We figured we’d just go, bike our way around this bite-size lozenge of a Southeast Asian country, and see, in ten days, just about everything there was to see in the place.
Eleven Republican candidates took the stage at the Reagan Library in California last night to convince the American people that they were worthy of electing to the White House. Of course, the entire debate provided just as much entertainment as information, since everybody knows that the voters are going, like third graders dangling a toy off a cliff, to keep threatening to vote for Donald Trump until the very last minute, then, once they realize that people are giving them attention, go the safe route and nominate Jeb Bush.
Once upon a time, a tiny dot floating in space exploded like a watermelon struck by a sledgehammer, sprayed matter and energy in all directions, and gave birth to the universe.
That was fourteen billion years ago, and in the meantime, far from slowing down and reversing direction, this expansion has, if anything, picked up the pace, as evidenced by the Doppler “red shift” of distant stars. This fact has led astronomers to postulate the existence of a mysterious force called “dark energy” tearing space apart at its seams.
The Sun is the hottest thing the Earth has ever seen.
First thing every morning, the Earth wakes up and is wowed by that heavenly body. Afternoons it spends gazing dreamily at the Sun’s perfect complexion, its curvaceous figure. It daydreams about the way the Sun can light up a room.
The transformation of Caitlyn Jenner has caused quite the kerfuffle around the water coolers and the newsrooms of America. Is that a man or a woman dressed in a little cream-colored bodysuit looking out at us from this week’s cover of Vanity Fair?
From a social psychological standpoint, what is interesting about this debate is not Caitlyn’s specific gender anatomy, but rather what it says about society. It sheds light on what people consider a person’s true self: how they determine what is--and isn't--authentic.