Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

Trump’s manipulation of mass consciousness

 

Trump's manipulation of mass consciousness

Courtesy of Dr. Mike SostericAthabasca University

File 20171206 31104 19tqxxg.jpg?ixlib=rb 1.1

Human memories are malleable. U.S. President Donald Trump seems aware of this truism as he effectively moulds and shapes American minds with deceptions and exaggerations. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

We like to think of our memories as sepia celluloid snippets of our life upon this Earth.

We think they “reflect us” and remind us of the person we like to be. True, memories can be iffy sometimes. We don’t always remember all the details, but mostly our memories are real.

For a long time, scientists backed us up. Early memory researchers thought that most memories retained some connection with reality. To be sure, memories were elaborately constructed in a bubbling and boiling cauldron of expectation, emotion, motivation, personal opinion, prejudice and self-delusion — what we scientists call, in our typically obtuse way, self-induced, systematic distortations. But there would usually be some element of reality.

As it turns out, we are wrong. When it comes to memory, reality need not apply.

Psychologists have demonstrated that a skilled manipulator can create memories out of the fantastical thin air. Psychologist Julia Shaw does this in experiments with students. Using basic psychology, she can convince 70 per cent of her subjects that they committed a crime, when in fact they never did. It is “alarmingly easy” to do, she says.

How does she achieve this remarkable fabrication?

First, she makes people trust her. Second, she establishes her authority. Third, she constructs their new memory by invoking, through image, visualization and narrative, the subject’s imagination.

Like a potter at her wheel, she moulds and shapes the memory, layering in detail and reinforcing through repetition. Finally, she fires the new memory in the kiln of social pressure and group membership. Voila, the student is a convicted criminal!

Human survival requires group coherence

It’s shocking, but understandable, from an evolutionary perspective. Neurological mechanisms that create malleable memory do not make us sheeple, but they do go a long way towards creating group identification and coherence, an absolute requisite for human survival before advanced civilization.

Malleable…
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How burnout is plaguing doctors and harming patients

 

How burnout is plaguing doctors and harming patients

Courtesy of Jay DesaiUniversity of Southern California

File 20171027 13340 16ejemk.jpg?ixlib=rb 1.1

Exhaustion and burnout among physicians are growing problems. wavebreakmedia/Shutterstock.com

The presidential symposium at this year’s Annual Meeting of the Child Neurology Society of America in early October in Kansas City raised many eyebrows. The first presentation of this symposium focused on burnout rates among neurologists around the country.

Many of my colleagues felt that this was an inappropriate choice, especially with so many trainees and young child neurologists in the audience. Typically, the presidential symposium at a conference of such eminence addresses an issue of scientific importance. But some other colleagues felt that this discussion was essential and that the elephant in the room cannot be ignored anymore.

As I sat through it, I felt that the presentation was outright depressing, with speakers belting out dismal data about the state of mind of neurologists around the country. The most striking statistic was that about 60 percent of neurologists in the U.S. were experiencing burnout symptoms, including emotional exhaustion or lack of a sense of accomplishment. They also showed signs of depersonalization, which is an impaired perception of self and others that can lead to lack of empathy, including for patients.

I have been taking care of patients for more than two decades since graduating from medical school in 1994. I had not even heard of physician burnout until about four years ago when a lot of data started getting published. However, it is now a subject of discussion among physicians on wards, in clinic and at conferences, as we all realize that it is a menace.

The core that provides care

Unsurprisingly, the rot extends beyond the field of neurology. Several reports recently have highlighted that physician burnout rates across many major specialties in the U.S. have reached epidemic proportions. For example, a survey earlier this year suggested that the physician burnout rate exceeded 50 percent for the fields of emergency medicine, obstetrics and gynecology, family medicine, internal medicine, critical care, anesthesiology, pediatrics, neurology, urology, cardiology, rheumatology and infectious disease.

This is bad for doctors, and it’s bad for patients. Physician burnout…
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Why evangelicals are OK with voting for Roy Moore

 

Why evangelicals are OK with voting for Roy Moore

Courtesy of David Elcott, New York University

Are conservative evangelicals and Catholics in political decline?

Many liberals apparently see hypocrisy over sexual harassment bringing down this once-formidable social and political movement.

Roy Moore allegedly stalking girls, Donald Trump’s mic’d misogyny, family values Congressman Wesley Goodman’s alleged sexual harassment of young Republican men and the Bill O’Reilly and Roger Ailes resignations at Fox News – all of these point to a would-be crisis.

Some evangelicals have rebelled.

R. Albert Mohler Jr., president of the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, condemned President Trump during the presidential campaign, saying, “Trump’s horrifying statements, heard in his own proud voice … must make continued support for Trump impossible for any evangelical leader.”

But unlike Mohler, most conservative evangelicals and Catholics have remained rock-hard faithful to Trump and Moore. While many find this paradoxical, it really does make sense.

I have recently published a study of Christian responses to key public policy issues. The study took the form of surveys and interviews, a cross-sample of hundreds of Christians conducted across America, on topics ranging from same-sex marriage to abortion to the nature of evil and goodness in the world. The results are a reminder of why religious beliefs and values are so intertwined with politics in the United States.

Understanding these underlying core beliefs can explain the actions of most evangelical voters in the #MeToo era.

Liberals don’t get it

Liberals claim to detect a double standard in those with whom they have long disagreed. They cite the resignations of members of Congress Al Franken and John Conyers as examples of the righteousness of the Democratic Party – while a Republican president who admitted to what sounds like sexual assault remains in office.

But that won’t help the Democrats win elections in the future. What I learned in my research is that the ways people – be they Democrat or Republican or independent – process political decisions is a complex combination of deep-held values and trade-offs.

Do the resignations of Senators Al


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Too High Tuesday – S&P 500 Most Overbought in 22 Years

80% overbought.

We weren't even 80% overbought in 1999.  The high on the RSI Index was hit back in early 1997 and, bulls take note – we kept going higher for 2 more years after that – so this doesn't mean it's the end – it just means this is crazy.  This is about the point where Alan Greenspan called the market "irrationally exuberant" (Dec 5th, 1996) saying:

Clearly, sustained low inflation implies less uncertainty about the future, and lower risk premiums imply higher prices of stocks and other earning assets. We can see that in the inverse relationship exhibited by price/earnings ratios and the rate of inflation in the past. But how do we know when irrational exuberance has unduly escalated asset values, which then become subject to unexpected and prolonged contractions as they have in Japan over the past decade?

Image result for irrational exuberance chartThe Dow had just passed 5,000 at the time and, two years later, it was at 11,700 – up 134% AFTER the Fed Chairman said people were nuts for buying stocks.  I don't know for sure if we were right to go to CASH!!! last week but it's not a permanent decision – it's simply something we're doing into the holidays and likely to remain until we see the Q4 earnings and 2018 guidance in January.  THEN we will decide which stocks we want to ride for the next 100% of the market rally – if such a thing is coming.  

As you can see from the chart, the Dow move was nothing compared to the Nasdaq, which more than tripled after his call.  We just saw BitCoin more than double after JP Morgan's Jamie Dimon called it a scam and our GreenCoins (GRE) doubled yesterday and today they are up another 20% – that's a scam we can all enjoy!  

We're waiting on a Fed decision tomorrow and they are expected to tighten and this morning's November PPI numbers were hotter than expected, at 0.4% with even Core PPI up 0.3% – so those are good reasons to expect the Fed will be tapping on the brakes tomorrow but Greenspan raised rates all the way
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Life expectancy in Britain has fallen so much that a million years of life could disappear by 2058 – why?

 

Life expectancy in Britain has fallen so much that a million years of life could disappear by 2058 – why?

Courtesy of Danny DorlingUniversity of Oxford and Stuart Gietel-BastenHong Kong University of Science and Technology

File 20171124 21853 tcsiv9.jpg?ixlib=rb 1.1

via shutterstock.com

Buried deep in a note towards the end of a recent bulletin published by the British government’s statistical agency was a startling revelation. On average, people in the UK are now projected to live shorter lives than previously thought.

In their projections, published in October 2017, statisticians at the Office for National Statistics (ONS) estimated that by 2041, life expectancy for women would be 86.2 years and 83.4 years for men. In both cases, that’s almost a whole year less than had been projected just two years earlier. And the statisticians said life expectancy would only continue to creep upwards in future.

As a result, and looking further ahead, a further one million earlier deaths are now projected to happen across the UK in the next 40 years by 2058. This number was not highlighted in the report. But it jumped out at us when we analysed the tables of projections published alongside it.

It means that the 110 years of steadily improving life expectancy in the UK are now officially over. The implications for this are huge and the reasons the statistics were revised is a tragedy on an enormous scale.

A rising tide of life

Life expectancy is most commonly calculated from birth. It is the average number of years a new-born baby can expect to live if the mortality rates pertaining at the time of their birth apply throughout their life.

In 1891, life expectancy for women in England and Wales was 48 years. For men it was 44. Many people lived longer than this, but so many babies died in their first year of life that, from birth, you were doing better than average if you made it past your forties. For most of the 1890s the Conservatives were in power under Lord Salisbury. They continued to support and build on public health reforms from earlier years, such as the construction of sewers and improvements to the supply of clean…
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Why Trump’s evangelical supporters welcome his move on Jerusalem

 

Why Trump's evangelical supporters welcome his move on Jerusalem

Courtesy of Julie IngersollUniversity of North Florida

File 20171207 11285 1iw2c1o.jpg?ixlib=rb 1.1

Why Jerusalem matters to evangelicals. jaime.silva, CC BY-NC-ND

President Trump’s announcement on Wednesday, Dec. 6 that the U.S. would recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel received widespread criticism. Observers quickly recognized the decision as related not so much to national security concerns as to domestic U.S. politics and promises candidate Trump made to his evangelical supporters, who welcomed the announcement..

Historian Diana Butler Bass posted on Twitter:

“Of all the possible theological dog-whistles to his evangelical base, this is the biggest. Trump is reminding them that he is carrying out God’s will to these Last Days.”

It is true that evangelicals have often noted that their support for Trump is based in their conviction that God can use the unlikeliest of men to enact his will. But how did conservative American Christians become invested in such a fine point of Middle East policy as whether the U.S. Embassy is in Tel Aviv or Jerusalem?

For many of President Trump’s evangelical supporters this is a key step in the progression of events leading to the second coming of Jesus. There’s an interesting story as to how that came to be.

Ushering in the kingdom of God

The nation of Israel and the role of the city of Jerusalem are central in the “end-times” theology – a form of what is known as “pre-millennialism” – embraced by many American conservative Protestants. ?

Evangelical Christians from various countries wave flags as they show their support for Israel in Jerusalem in a march held in October 2015. AP Photo/Sebastian Scheiner, File)

While this theology is often thought of as a “literal” reading of the Bible, it’s actually a reasonably new interpretation that dates to the 19th century and relates to the work of Bible teacher John Nelson Darby.

According to Darby, for this to happen the Jewish people must have control of Jerusalem and build a third…
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How virtual reality is opening up some of the world’s most inaccessible archaeological sites

 

How virtual reality is opening up some of the world’s most inaccessible archaeological sites

Courtesy of Brendan CassidyUniversity of Central Lancashire and David RobinsonUniversity of Central Lancashire

File 20171211 27698 fj5m6i.jpg?ixlib=rb 1.1

Pleito cave site, Devlin Gandy, Author provided

We often associate virtual reality (VR) with thrilling experiences we may never be able to have in real life – such as flying a jet fighter, exploring the oceans or going on a spacewalk. But researchers are also starting to use this technology to study and open up access to archaeological sites that are difficult to get to.

An archaeological site can be inaccessible for a range of reasons. It might be in a remote location or on private property, the archaeological remains may be fragile, or it might just be difficult or dangerous to get there.

Just over an hour’s drive north from Los Angeles is the Wind Wolves Preserve. At nearly 100,000 acres, the preserve protects a wide range of endangered and threatened species in the heart of the most populous state in the US.

It also hosts two remote archaeological sites situated in the San Emigdio Hills. Pleito, one of the most elaborately painted rock-art sites in the world, and Cache Cave, with one of the most significant in-situ collections of perishable objects, including baskets, ever discovered in the American West. The oldest of the rock paintings and baskets appear to be over 2,000-years-old. However, exploring it is problematic. The paintings at Pleito, found on exfoliating sandstone, are extremely fragile. Meanwhile, the Cache Cave is a complex, narrow cave system.

Creating a virtual reality prototype of the Cache cave. Devlin Gandy, Author provided

Yet these sites are of great cultural importance to local Native Americans, especially the Tejon Indian Tribe. The hands of some of their ancestors painted the rock art, while other highly skilled basket makers worked for hours on making some of the world’s finest basketry. Until recently, the majority of the Tejon tribes people were unable to visit the Pleito cave site due to its inaccessibility and fragility.…
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California fire damage to homes is less ‘random’ than it seems

 

California fire damage to homes is less 'random' than it seems

Courtesy of Faith KearnsUniversity of California, Division of Agriculture and Natural Resources

File 20171207 11315 1ygt36d.jpg?ixlib=rb 1.1

Can California update its building codes to minimize fire damage? AP Photo/Jae C. Hong

In the midst of the many wildfire emergencies that have faced California this year, it can often seem that the way houses burn, or don’t, is random.

The thing is, though, it’s not. Firefighters and researchers alike have a pretty solid understanding of why some houses are more vulnerable to wildfire than others. The real challenge ultimately lies in whether those with the power to act on that knowledge will do so.

Available science

It is commonly thought that it takes direct flame to spread a fire, but this isn’t always the case. Small embers are instead often the culprits that begin house fires during wildfires. These small bits of burning debris can be lofted long distances by the wind. They can then end up igniting landscaping materials like combustible mulch, or enter homes through vulnerable spots – gutters teeming with debris, unscreened attic vents, open or broken windows, old roofs with missing shingles. Once there, the embers smolder and can ultimately catch a house on fire.

In California, iconic winds work to create ideal ember-driven ignition conditions. The Santa Ana winds in Southern California – known as the Diablo winds in northern part of the state – have generally followed fairly predictable seasonal and spatial patterns. “Red flag” fire warnings are often issued on dry days when the winds will be particularly fierce.

Avoiding fire on Highway 101 north of Ventura, California. AP Photo/Noah Berger

While humans can’t really control as much as we’d like to believe when it comes to disasters, we do have the ability to control where and how we build. For decades, most wildfire education and enforcement campaigns have focused on creating so-called defensible space where landscaping vegetation is carefully selected and located on the property, as well as routinely maintained.

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Taking a second look at the learn-to-code craze

 

Taking a second look at the learn-to-code craze

Courtesy of Kate M. MiltnerUniversity of Southern California, Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism

File 20171116 15412 kukk7v.jpg?ixlib=rb 1.1

Are computers in the classroom more helpful to students – or the companies that sell the machines? AP Photo/Sue Ogrocki

Over the past five years, the idea that computer programming – or “coding” – is the key to the future for both children and adults alike has become received wisdom in the United States. The aim of making computer science a “new basic” skill for all Americans has driven the formation of dozens of nonprofit organizations, coding schools and policy programs.

As the third annual Computer Science Education Week begins, it is worth taking a closer look at this recent coding craze. The Obama administration’s “Computer Science For All” initiative and the Trump administration’s new effort are both based on the idea that computer programming is not only a fun and exciting activity, but a necessary skill for the jobs of the future.

However, the American history of these education initiatives shows that their primary beneficiaries aren’t necessarily students or workers, but rather the influential tech companies that promote the programs in the first place. The current campaign to teach American kids to code may be the latest example of tech companies using concerns about education to achieve their own goals. This raises some important questions about who stands to gain the most from the recent computer science push.

Old rhetoric about a ‘new economy’

One of the earliest corporate efforts to get computers into schools was Apple’s “Kids Can’t Wait” program in 1982. Apple co-founder Steve Jobs personally lobbied Congress to pass the Computer Equipment Contribution Act, which would have allowed companies that donated computers to schools, libraries and museums to deduct the equipment’s value from their corporate income tax bills. While his efforts in Washington failed, he succeeded in his home state of California, where companies could claim a tax credit for 25 percent of the value of computer donations.

The bill was clearly a corporate tax break, but it was framed…
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CVS merger with Aetna: Health care cure or curse?

 

CVS merger with Aetna: Health care cure or curse?

Courtesy of Sharona HoffmanCase Western Reserve University

File 20171205 22996 17vfiyt.jpg?ixlib=rb 1.1

A CVS drugstore in Brooklyn, New York, on Dec. 3, 2017. AP Photo/Mark Lennihan

The announcement that CVS plans to acquire Aetna for US$69 billion raises hope and concerns.

The transaction would create a new health care giant. Aetna is the third-largest health insurer in the United States, insuring about 46.7 million people.

CVS operates 9,700 pharmacies and 1,000 MinuteClinics. A decade ago, it also purchased Caremark and now operates CVS/Caremark, a pharmacy benefits manager, a type of business that administers drug benefit programs for health plans. CVS/Caremark is one of the three largest pharmacy benefits managers in the United States. Along with ExpressScripts and OptummRXTogether, these three control at least 80 percent of the market.

Should American consumers be happy or concerned about the proposed merger? As a professor of health law and bioethics, I see compelling arguments on both sides.

Good for consumers, or for the companies?

CVS and Aetna assert they are motivated by a desire to improve services for consumers and that the merger will lower health care costs and improve outcomes.

Many industry experts have postulated, however, that financial gain is at the heart of the deal.

A woman holding a prescription in a pharmacy. Many consumers are abandoning drugstores for online pharmacies. Lightpoet/Shutterstock,com

CVS has suffered declining profits as consumers turn to online suppliers for drugs. Reports that Amazon is considering entry into the pharmacy business raise the specter of increasingly fierce competition.

The merger would provide CVS with guaranteed business from Aetna patients and allow Aetna to expand into new health care territory.

The heart of the deal

The merger would eliminate the need for a pharmacy benefits manager because CVS would be part of Aetna.

Pharmacy benefits managers, which sprang up in the early 2000s in response to rising costs of care, administer drug benefit programs…
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Phil's Favorites

With FCC's net neutrality ruling, the US could lose its lead in online consumer protection

 

With FCC's net neutrality ruling, the US could lose its lead in online consumer protection

Courtesy of Sascha MeinrathPennsylvania State University and Nathalia FoditschAmerican University

Three of these smiling people undid U.S. consumer protections online. Federal Communications Commission

The internet may be an international system of interconnecting networks sharin...



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Zero Hedge

Inflation indicator wonders why the Fed is raising rates

Courtesy of Chris Kimble

The Fed raised rates yesterday, is it necessary for them to do that? Humbly, the answer will come in time.

Below looks at the inflation indicator and how it is testing a key price level-

This inflation indicator (TIP/TLT) has been heading lower overall lower, inside of falling channel (1), for the past 5-years. It hit the top of the channel at the start of this year and has been heading south most of the time.

The infl...



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Biotech

Designer proteins that package genetic material could help deliver gene therapy

Reminder: Pharmboy and Ilene are available to chat with Members, comments are found below each post.

 

Designer proteins that package genetic material could help deliver gene therapy

Courtesy of Ian HaydonUniversity of Washington

Delivering genetic material is a key challenge in gene therapy. Invitation image created by Kstudio, CC BY

If you’ve ever bought a new iPhone, you’ve experienced good packaging.

The way the lid slowly separates from the box. The pull...



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Chart School

Rallies Slow As Semiconductor Selling Eases

Courtesy of Declan

Markets experienced early gains but gave them back by the close of business. Given the mini-rally of the past five days, some of the indices are looking vulnerable to a new round of selling.

The S&P finished with a narrow inverted hammer on low volume but at new highs. A move back to the newly accelerated channel is looking favored.
 


The Nasdaq also finished with a narrow doji but wasn't able to make new highs.  It's already close to one channel but looks more likely to reach down to th...



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Insider Scoop

Earnings Scheduled For December 13, 2017

Courtesy of Benzinga.

Companies Reporting Before The Bell
  • Lightinthebox Holding Co Ltd-ADR (NYSE: LITB) is estimated to report quarterly earnings at $0.01 per share on revenue of $78.49 million.
Companies Reporting After The Bell
  • ABM Industries, Inc. (NYSE: ABM) is expected to post quarterly earnings at $0.49 per share on revenue of $1.49 billion.
  • ...


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Digital Currencies

Not A Bubble?

Courtesy of ZeroHedge. View original post here.

Meet The Crypto Company - up almost 20,000% since inception in September...

To a market cap of over $12.6 billion...

Grant's Interest Rate Observer drew the world's attention to this 'company' yesterday.....



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ValueWalk

Tax Bill May Spark Exodus From High-Tax States

Courtesy of FinancialSense.com via ValueWalk.com

The following is a summary of our recent podcast, “Exodus – The Major Wealth Migration,” which can be listened to on our site here on on iTunes here.

It’s looking increasingl...



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Members' Corner

An Interview with David Brin

Our guest David Brin is an astrophysicist, technology consultant, and best-selling author who speaks, writes, and advises on a range of topics including national defense, creativity, and space exploration. He is also a well-known and influential futurist (one of four “World's Best Futurists,” according to The Urban Developer), and it is his ideas on the future, specifically the future of civilization, that I hope to learn about here.   

Ilene: David, you base many of your predictions of the future on a theory of historica...



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Mapping The Market

Puts things in perspective

Courtesy of Jean-Luc

Puts things in perspective:

The circles don't look to be to scale much!

...

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OpTrader

Swing trading portfolio - week of September 11th, 2017

Reminder: OpTrader is available to chat with Members, comments are found below each post.

 

This post is for all our live virtual trade ideas and daily comments. Please click on "comments" below to follow our live discussion. All of our current  trades are listed in the spreadsheet below, with entry price (1/2 in and All in), and exit prices (1/3 out, 2/3 out, and All out).

We also indicate our stop, which is most of the time the "5 day moving average". All trades, unless indicated, are front-month ATM options. 

Please feel free to participate in the discussion and ask any questions you might have about this virtual portfolio, by clicking on the "comments" link right below.

To learn more about the swing trading virtual portfolio (strategy, performance, FAQ, etc.), please click here ...



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Promotions

NewsWare: Watch Today's Webinar!

 

We have a great guest at today's webinar!

Bill Olsen from NewsWare will be giving us a fun and lively demonstration of the advantages that real-time news provides. NewsWare is a market intelligence tool for news. In today's data driven markets, it is truly beneficial to have a tool that delivers access to the professional sources where you can obtain the facts in real time.

Join our webinar, free, it's open to all. 

Just click here at 1 pm est and join in!

[For more information on NewsWare, click here. For a list of prices: NewsWar...



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Kimble Charting Solutions

Brazil; Waterfall in prices starting? Impact U.S.?

Courtesy of Chris Kimble.

Below looks at the Brazil ETF (EWZ) over the last decade. The rally over the past year has it facing a critical level, from a Power of the Pattern perspective.

CLICK ON CHART TO ENLARGE

EWZ is facing dual resistance at (1), while in a 9-year down trend of lower highs and lower lows. The counter trend rally over the past 17-months has it testing key falling resistance. Did the counter trend reflation rally just end at dual resistance???

If EWZ b...



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All About Trends

Mid-Day Update

Reminder: Harlan is available to chat with Members, comments are found below each post.

Click here for the full report.




To learn more, sign up for David's free newsletter and receive the free report from All About Trends - "How To Outperform 90% Of Wall Street With Just $500 A Week." Tell David PSW sent you. - Ilene...

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Philip R. Davis is a founder Phil's Stock World, a stock and options trading site that teaches the art of options trading to newcomers and devises advanced strategies for expert traders...

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Ilene is editor and affiliate program coordinator for PSW. She manages the site market shadows, archives, more. Contact Ilene to learn about our affiliate and content sharing programs.

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