Michael Goldfarb of Global Post explains why the general negativity of political ineptitude and global financial meltdown seem different when you look at them from Australia.
"If you want to get away from the mounting feeling of dread in the U.S. and Europe, the sensation that maybe this economic downturn is not quite over and that Barack Obama may not have quite sharp enough elbows to make a success of his job, if you want to get a fresh perspective on things, then you need to go to the far side of the world — just make sure someone else is paying for it," writes Michael Goldfarb. "I've just come back from the far side, Australia to be precise. What I saw in Australia was a country that has weathered the global downturn pretty well. I experienced a couple of weeks of work in which I didn't encounter massive existential despair about the state of the world, in which reports of body counts and corruption in war zones, hypocrisy and corruption in government didn't dominate discussion. This happy view wasn't just true in Australia. I spent a bit of time in Singapore, visited the docks and spent time watching the armada of cargo ships riding at anchor, waiting to be loaded or off-loaded. Wealth and industry and the lack of introspection that I now recognize as a symptom of economic/existential malaise defined the city. The reason for this can be summed up in one word: China."
What makes a life worth living as you grow older?
- Dr. Ezekiel Emanuel revisits his essay on wanting to die at 75 years old.
- The doctor believes that an old life filled with disability and lessened activity isn't worth living.
- Activists believe his argument stinks of ageism, while advances in biohacking could render his point moot.
The Amazon Rainforest is often called "The Planet's Lungs."
- For weeks, fires have been burning in the Amazon rainforest in Brazil, likely started by farmers and ranchers.
- Brazil's president, Jair Bolsonaro, has blamed NGOs for starting the flames, offering no evidence to support the claim.
- There are small steps you can take to help curb deforestation in the Amazon rainforest, which produces about 20 percent of the world's oxygen.
Emojis might contain more emotional information than meets the eye.
- A new study shows that people who frequently used emojis in text messages with potential dates engaged in more sexual activity and had more contact with those dates.
- However, the study only shows an association; it didn't establish causality.
- The authors suggest that emojis might help to convey nuanced emotional information that's lacking in strictly text-based messaging.