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Re: [bookclub-792] Next book after finishing The Stuff of Thought

From: user 5.
Sent on: Thursday, April 30, 2009 10:38 AM
One of the reasons that adolescence is so hard is that the grownups have to teach you that pure logic can't run human affairs, and the teaching has to be exemplary of the pragmatism that Obama is showing here.

He condemns torture, he explains it corrodes character, he proposes not to do it again, but your criticism is that he isn't sufficiently into revenge.

Well, bless his big heart! The real question here is whether Obama is wise enough to implement the teachings of every damn decent religion we've seen: abandon revenge, for it breeds more revenge.

What will you get from punishment of Bush, Cheney, and all the corporate hangers-on? Isn't the real problem the corporate stranglehold on our economy and culture?

The solution we need is for people to back off on the consumerism that drives the greed engine and enable the psychopathic military-industrial complex.

How does revenge decrease consumerism?

(If this is too Otvosian a question, simply reread the sentences above it for the stepwise logic, remembering to inject the territorialistic realities of human nature into the argument at the appropriate places, as a few years of reading evolutionary psychology and cognitive science will make you automatically do.)

I'm starting to understand that the fun of discovering these aspects of Obama's chess game is greatly increased by simultaneously noting that Obama is our first President completely conversant with modern research into human psychological and sociological mechanisms, and is thus operating from a far more sophisticated view than old school politicos, who were merely pragmatic, without an understanding of how to implement a long-term, world-wide governance system, or new world order, which is, of course, our goal.

That's the secret key to understanding his apparent contradictory stances and operations. He's actively working for a new world government, while juggling politics and economics and geopolitical problems.

Question: What other world leaders are this conversant with modern psychological science?  

On Apr 30, 2009, at 10:13 AM, Ruchira wrote:

I just started reading _iconoclast: a neuroscientist reveals how to think differently_ by Gregory Berns, a professor of neuroeconomics.  This book is also interesting.  It might be good to read this after Nancy Andreasen's _The Creative Brain_, though, as these two neuroscientists seem to have different ideas about how the brain thinks creatively.  Personally I'm still more inclined to _The Creative Brain_ point of view at this point.

--Ruchira

On Tue, Apr 28, 2009 at 7:58 PM, Ruchira Datta <[address removed]> wrote:
Another book I read and enjoyed was Gary Marcus's _The Birth of the Mind_.

Any word from anyone who attended the Cognitive Science Conference?

--Ruchira


On Fri, Apr 24, 2009 at 6:02 PM, Ruchira <[address removed]> wrote:
I really liked _The Creative Brain: The Science of Genius_ by neuroscientist Nancy Andreasen.  It's very short and well-written.

As I've mentioned before, I liked _Hot Thought_.  Dana also has that, so perhaps he has an opinion about that.

The neuroscientist Mark Ellisman told me, completely out of the blue, that only 20% of one of Gerard Edelman's four books was worth reading (but didn't say which).  However, he seemed to enjoy making provocative statements, so I would take that with a grain of salt.  I have Edelman's _Bright Air, Brilliant Fire_ but haven't read it.

Maybe people going to the cognitive sciences conference tomorrow (which I'm not) will have some suggestions afterward...

--Ruchira

On Thu, Apr 23, 2009 at 10:16 PM, REAM <[address removed]> wrote:
Hello everyone,

At our next meetup on Sunday, May 3rd, we will be discussing the last few chapters of The Stuff of Thought. And I would like to have our next book that we will read decided before the end of that next meeting. Therefore, I would like to start fielding suggestions from which we can choose from. I will kick off the suggestion process by suggesting that we read Wider Than the Sky: The Phenomenal Gift of Consciousness, by Gerald Edelman. I read his latest book, Second Nature: Brain Science and Human Knowledge, which was very short and seemed to be primarily about his thoughts on the reconciliation of the humanities with the sciences. I am hoping that his previous book (the one I am suggesting) will focus more on the brain and consciousness. His ideas seem to be complex and intriguing enough to inspire many pleasant hours of discussion and debate.

I look forward to hearing your suggestions.

~Dana Ream




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