No side effects here
My wife and I discovered before we married (decades ago) that neither of us cared much at all about being functionally engaged with society…
We’re still doing OK, thank you, as co-hermits.
“Religious” folk ain’t the majority in the GOUSA anymore …
No waiting in line
The secularization of U.S. society — the waning of religious faith, practice and affiliation — is continuing at a dramatic and historically unprecedented pace. While many may consider such a development as cause for concern, such a worry is not warranted. This increasing godlessness in America is actually a good thing, to be welcomed and embraced.
Democratic societies that have experienced the greatest degrees of secularization are among the healthiest, wealthiest and safest in the world, enjoying relatively low rates of violent crime and high degrees of well-being and happiness. Clearly, a rapid loss of religion does not result in societal ruin …
Organic secularization can occur for many reasons. It happens when members of a society become better educated, more prosperous, and live safer, more secure and more peaceful lives; when societies experience increases in social isolation; when people have better healthcare; when more women hold paying jobs; when more people wait longer to get married and have kids. All of these, especially in combination, can decrease religiosity.
Another major factor is the ubiquity of the internet, which provides open windows to alternative worldviews and different cultures that can corrode religious conviction — and allows budding skeptics and nascent freethinkers to find, support and encourage one another.
Overdue! I had read sufficient science to be an atheist by the time I was 13. Added studies in philosophy to properly associate my understanding with philosophical materialism … by 18.
Never had to look back and change that comprehension, understanding.
Weed is still illegal in states where sex with farm animals isn’t
In so many ways, laws are what keep society together. The rules that mark order. But they can also be deeply problematic. Consider that in some states bestiality is still legal, but smoking a joint isn’t.
That is the point of a new ad campaign from Jay-Z’s cannabis brand, Monogram. It uses black-and-white imagery and stark white text to point out the hypocrisy (and sometimes plain absurdity) of American drug policies.
The ad campaign is running in Los Angeles, San Francisco, New York, Chicago, Miami, and Washington, D.C., with plans to roll out in more cities in the next few weeks.
Sometimes, I wonder if a great education would be enough to countervail against the stupidity that keeps archaic laws on the books?
Pic of the Day…Reclaiming History
CONFEDERATE SYMBOLS ARE TARGETS AS MANY AMERICANS DEMAND THAT U.S. COMMUNITIES CONFRONT SYSTEMIC RACISM…
This photo…and this topic…are joined in the February 2021 issue of NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC.
Introduced as the slogan for Lucky Strike cigarettes just after the end of World War 2, “Lucky Strike Means Fine Tobacco” stuck in the minds of generations of American smokers [and non-smokers].
The persistence of stupid, of ignorance and the complete failure of a whole society to act upon reason and science, to respond to unhealthy behavior – says only one thing to me – today. Don’t be surprised if the shithead in the White House gets re-elected.
I consider myself only slightly more educated than the average American. Though I acquired many hours at night school, I always studied what I was interested in. Which was “everything” – instead of suggested course work. Still going – as a retired old geek.
But, I knew enough by 1958 to quit smoking. At the age of 20, I had been smoking for 8 years. By then, more than 2 packs/day. And I quit cold turkey. A struggle – yes. But, it made sense and I had to live up to that. Americans in general smoke a lot less, nowadays. I imagine that’s because many just don’t take up the habit. Accumulated decades of hearing a bit of truth about dying from heart disease or cancer.
Look at how many years it’s required to break that habit. Do you think Americans have learned to do more than respond to the snazziest ad campaign when it comes to election day? Or will their collective consciousness stay stuck on whoever came up with the neatest slogan?
Our quasi-fascist Fearless Leader may only need to rely on the persistence of “Four More Years” – competing with white bread and not a lot of courage.
My turn, now – then, it’s your turn
Pandemic in the Solid South
…So far, about one in 10 deaths in the United States from COVID-19 has occurred in the four-state arc of Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, and Georgia, according to data assembled by the COVID Tracking Project, a volunteer collaboration incubated at The Atlantic. New Orleans is on pace to become the next global epicenter of the pandemic. The virus has a foothold in southwestern Georgia, and threatens to overwhelm hospitals in the Atlanta metropolitan area. The coronavirus is advancing quickly across the American South. And in the American South, significant numbers of younger people are battling health conditions that make coronavirus outbreaks more perilous…
All data in this stage of the pandemic are provisional and incomplete, and all conclusions are subject to change. But a review of the international evidence shows that, as far as we know, the outbreaks currently expanding in the American South are unique—and mainly because of how many people in their working prime are dying…
…In each state, older people are the majority of the people considered to be at risk of complications. But the Deep South and mid-South form a solid bloc of states where younger adults are much more at risk. In Arkansas, Alabama, Kentucky, Tennessee, Louisiana, and Mississippi, relatively young people make up more than a quarter of the vulnerable population. Compare that with the coronavirus’s beachhead in Washington State, where younger adults make up only about 19 percent of the risk group.
You can read on, examine the discussion, cause and effect…education, healthcare, cultural backwardness. Say they’ll learn from experience? They voted for George Wallace, and they voted for Richard Nixon and they voted for Shit-for-Brains-Trump! Ignorance breeds ill-health and all the rest. Frankly, the folks in charge of the Solid South work best and hardest at not improving at anything.
Job interviews never change
Think our basic education system isn’t crap? Read This!
❝ Engineers in the Bay Area. Advertising managers in Chicago. Freight specialists in Arizona. The job listings keep piling up at Amazon, a company that is growing in many directions amid one of the tightest labor markets in memory.
On Monday, Amazon said it had 30,000 open positions in the United States, including full- and part-time jobs at headquarters offices, technology hubs and warehouses…
❝ …Last fall, Amazon raised the minimum wage at its warehouses to $15 an hour, and this past summer, it said it would spend $700 million to retrain about a third of its American workers to perform tasks that required advanced skills. The effort included a major push to improve the technical expertise of corporate and tech-focused employees, such as turning entry-level coders into data scientists.
We live in a nation where most of our politicians don’t consider education as critical as infrastructure…and the last time the latter was brought up-to-date the president was a retired general named Eisenhower.