America the Not-So-Brave

"Our self-image is one of bold action. In reality, Americans resist change, pressing the government to act boldly only when a national calamity forces it upon us."

"Americans like to think of themselves as bold. It was boldness that gave birth to the country, built it, protected it from external threat and rescued it in times of domestic turbulence. Americans are proud of dreaming big and taking big chances, and as far as individual feats go, it may be true. But the larger truth is that, foreign military adventurism aside, the American government hasn't really acted boldly since the days of Franklin D. Roosevelt's New Deal and Lyndon Johnson's Great Society... An economic stimulus? Make sure it is a small one. Healthcare reform? Half measures. Climate change legislation? No action at all."

Why does turkey make you sleepy?

Is everyone's favorite Thanksgiving centerpiece really to blame for the post-dinner doldrums?

(Photo from Flickr)
Surprising Science
  • Americans kill around 45 million turkeys every year in preparation for the Thanksgiving meal, only to blame our favorite centerpiece for the following food comas.
  • Rumor has it our after-dinner sleepiness results from the tryptophan found in turkey.
  • However, it is the meal's overall nutritional imbalance, not just the tryptophan, that make us want to leave the dishes for tomorrow. Or maybe the next day.
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How to vaccinate the world’s most vulnerable? Build global partnerships.

Pfizer's partnerships strengthen their ability to deliver vaccines in developing countries.

Susan Silbermann, Global President of Pfizer Vaccines, looks on as a health care worker administers a vaccine in Rwanda. Photo: Courtesy of Pfizer.
Sponsored
  • Community healthcare workers face many challenges in their work, including often traveling far distances to see their clients
  • Pfizer is helping to drive the UN's sustainable development goals through partnerships.
  • Pfizer partnered with AMP and the World Health Organization to develop a training program for healthcare workers.
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Why Henry David Thoreau was drawn to yoga

The famed author headed to the pond thanks to Indian philosophy.

Image: Public Domain / Shutterstock / Big Think
Personal Growth
  • The famed author was heavily influenced by Indian literature, informing his decision to self-exile on Walden Pond.
  • He was introduced to these texts by his good friend's father, William Emerson.
  • Yoga philosophy was in America a century before any physical practices were introduced.
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