An Addict’s Choice
Everything you think you know about substance abuse is wrong, according to a new book “Addiction: A Disorder of Choice,” which says addiction is “voluntary behavior.”
Everything you think you know about substance abuse is wrong, according to a new book "Addiction: A Disorder of Choice," which says addiction is "voluntary behavior." Written by Gene Heyman, a research psychologist at McLean Hospital and a lecturer at Harvard, the book exacts an exemplary assault on the brain-based model of addiction. Without going so far as to say that addiction is independent of the brain, he attempts to break down the term "addiction" as it is commonly understood: to mean that substance abuse is an act beyond the user’s control. Heyman writes, "[a]ddiction … helps us understand voluntary behavior." How so? "[B]ecause," he explains, "it is not possible to understand addiction without understanding how we make choices." His book is "an invaluable tutorial in how to think about drug addiction [and] in bucking the medicalization trend, Heyman pits himself squarely against the National Institute on Drug Abuse, the nation’s main research facility on addiction, which coined the slogan that ‘addiction is a chronic and relapsing brain disease,’" remarks The New Republic.
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The Oxfam report prompted Anand Giridharadas to tweet: "Don't be Pinkered into everything's-getting-better complacency."
- A new report by Oxfam argues that wealth inequality is causing poverty and misery around the world.
- In the last year, the world's billionaires saw their wealth increase by 12%, while the poorest 3.8 billion people on the planet lost 11% of their wealth.
- The report prompted Anand Giridharadas to tweet: "Don't be Pinkered into everything's-getting-better complacency." We explain what Steven Pinker's got to do with it.
Moans, groans, and gripes release stress hormones in the brain.
Could you give up complaining for a whole month? That's the crux of this interesting piece by Jessica Hullinger over at Fast Company. Hullinger explores the reasons why humans are so predisposed to griping and why, despite these predispositions, we should all try to complain less. As for no complaining for a month, that was the goal for people enrolled in the Complaint Restraint project.
Participants sought to go the entirety of February without so much as a moan, groan, or bellyache.
- Facebook and Google began as companies with supposedly noble purposes.
- Creating a more connected world and indexing the world's information: what could be better than that?
- But pressure to return value to shareholders came at the expense of their own users.
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