Report: Spain Should Get With The (Time Zone) Program
By not being in the same time zone as its neighbors, Spaniards are suffering issues ranging from low worker productivity to a persistent feeling of jet-lag brought on by not enough sleep.
Kecia Lynn has worked as a technical writer, editor, software developer, arts administrator, summer camp director, and television host. A graduate of Case Western Reserve University and the Iowa Writers' Workshop, she is currently living in Iowa City and working on her first novel.
What's the Latest Development?
A report released last week by Spain's parliament links a host of physical, social and economic issues -- including low worker productivity, higher school dropout rates, and a persistent feeling of jet-lag without traveling -- to the fact that the country observes Central European Time despite its Western European Time zone location. The report cites evidence from various studies indicating that simply by being an hour ahead of its neighbors Portugal and the UK, Spaniards go to work earlier, work longer hours, and stay up later, resulting in a lack of sleep. It goes on to recommend that the government examine the pluses and minuses of switching to Western European Time, a move that could result in a profound cultural shift away from afternoon siestas and late-night dinners.
What's the Big Idea?
Spain has been in this situation ever since World War II, when most European countries switched to Central European Time so as to coordinate battles more efficiently. Despite not participating in the war, the country switched as well, but instead of switching back after the war's end, it decided to stay in that time zone. In addition to altering work schedules, a shift back one hour would require "[e]verything from public school class times to prime time TV...to change."
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- Cocaine cut with anti-worming adulterant levamisole may cause brain damage.
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Civil discourse has fallen to an all time low.
The question that the American populace needs to ask itself now is: how do we fix it?
Discursive fundamentals need to be taught to preserve free expression
In their findings the authors state:
upholding First Amendment ideals.
Talking politics at Thanksgiving dinner
- Progressive Activists: younger, highly engaged, secular, cosmopolitan, angry.
- Traditional Liberals: older, retired, open to compromise, rational, cautious.
- Passive Liberals: unhappy, insecure, distrustful, disillusioned.
- Politically Disengaged: young, low income, distrustful, detached, patriotic, conspiratorial
- Moderates: engaged, civic-minded, middle-of-the-road, pessimistic, Protestant.
- Traditional Conservatives: religious, middle class, patriotic, moralistic.
- Devoted Conservatives: white, retired, highly engaged, uncompromising,
It's interesting to note the authors found that:
"Tribe membership shows strong reliability in predicting views across different political topics."
Here are some statistics on differing viewpoints according to political party:
- 51% of staunch liberals say it's "morally acceptable" to punch Nazis.
- 53% of Republicans favor stripping U.S. citizenship from people who burn the American flag.
- 65% of Republicans say NFL players should be fired if they refuse to stand for the anthem.
- 58% of Democrats say employers should punish employees for offensive Facebook posts.
- 47% of Republicans favor bans on building new mosques.
Here are some guidelines for civic discourse that might come in handy:
- Practice inclusion and listen to who you're speaking to.
Civic discourse in the divisive age
dangerously tribal, fueled by a culture of outrage and taking offense. For the combatants,
the other side can no longer be tolerated, and no price is too high to defeat them.
These tensions are poisoning personal relationships, consuming our politics and
putting our democracy in peril.
Once a country has become tribalized, debates about contested issues from
immigration and trade to economic management, climate change and national security,
become shaped by larger tribal identities. Policy debate gives way to tribal conflicts.
Polarization and tribalism are self-reinforcing and will likely continue to accelerate.
The work of rebuilding our fragmented society needs to start now. It extends from
re-connecting people across the lines of division in local communities all the way to
building a renewed sense of national identity: a bigger story of us."
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