Apatow Conservatives

Judd Apatow:  comic visionary, insightfully raunchy, slacker hero… conservative crusader? Ross Douthat smartly makes the case that Apatow is leading the charge in making socially conservative lifestyles seem cool to a young, hip—and receptive—crowd, especially with his recently released Funny People.  It isn't the first time Apatow has been profiled by the Times for his commitment to family values.  And Apatow's work isn't the only evidence that the next generation of families is steadily trending towards the right.

In fact, there are plenty of signs that—however politically liberal they are when it comes to individual and civil rights—many in the younger generations are adopting relatively socially conservative day-to-day lifestyles compared to their wild and crazy Baby Boomer parents.  Back in 2007, the New York Observer reported on the “New Victorian” trend of twenty-somethings preferring to settle down and marry young rather than play the field. The New York Times has reported on women going to elite colleges with a career intention of motherhood.

Why this change in direction? Why do relatively conservative lifestyles now seem to be accompanied by socially liberal political stances?  The answers to these questions remain unclear, and the political implications of these realities may only be beginning to come to light.  In the meantime, two Big Thinkers provide their own thoughts on America’s changing values: Andrew Kohut and Chuck Close.

​There are two kinds of failure – but only one is honorable

Malcolm Gladwell teaches "Get over yourself and get to work" for Big Think Edge.

Big Think Edge
  • Learn to recognize failure and know the big difference between panicking and choking.
  • At Big Think Edge, Malcolm Gladwell teaches how to check your inner critic and get clear on what failure is.
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Is this why time speeds up as we age?

We take fewer mental pictures per second.

(MPH Photos/giphy/yShutterstock/Big Think)
Mind & Brain
  • Recent memories run in our brains like sped-up old movies.
  • In childhood, we capture images in our memory much more quickly.
  • The complexities of grownup neural pathways are no match for the direct routes of young brains.
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In Switzerland, gun ownership is high but mass shootings are low. Why?

In the face of seemingly unstoppable gun violence, Americans could stand to gain by looking to the Swiss.

Politics & Current Affairs
  • According to a recent study, the U.S. had the second highest number of gun-related deaths in 2016 after Brazil.
  • Like the U.S., Switzerland has a high rate of gun ownership. However, it has a considerably lower rate of deaths from gun violence.
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Why are so many objects in space shaped like discs?

It's one of the most consistent patterns in the unviverse. What causes it?

  • Spinning discs are everywhere – just look at our solar system, the rings of Saturn, and all the spiral galaxies in the universe.
  • Spinning discs are the result of two things: The force of gravity and a phenomenon in physics called the conservation of angular momentum.
  • Gravity brings matter together; the closer the matter gets, the more it accelerates – much like an ice skater who spins faster and faster the closer their arms get to their body. Then, this spinning cloud collapses due to up and down and diagonal collisions that cancel each other out until the only motion they have in common is the spin – and voila: A flat disc.