What should we be doing?

Question: What should we be doing?

D. Quinn Mills: I think we need, let me talk with the United States first. We need to clean up our act. If we are going to provide leadership to the world then free speech ought to mean something other than protection for pornography for example. I think we got an very confused about these kinds of things and I think our act is pretty bad. If you are outside the United States and you look it, what you see primarily is our popular culture, which is sex, drugs and violence. We had somehow come to some kind of an accommodation with that, much of the world doesn’t minding to do with that and they have a very good reason for that. In the world outside the United States, we do not have an effectively operating international system at this point of time, I don’t think that something like UN, which is kind of or it is useful to have an agency for discussion, but it is not a decision making effective body. So, we need some kind of a better accommodation in a better system among the great powers to try to keep peace. Now, it is difficult to do that right now, because we are not sure to great power are anymore and the Russians are trying to get back in the group, the Chinese are trying to resort themselves much more stronger and that is going to be a very difficult period of time for us in the next couple in decades, that is the biggest single problem, geopolitically in the world. Individually I think each of us should be trying to improve ourselves. Our skills, our character, I think that should go on, I think we should each look beyond and that should go on all over lives. Secondly, we should look beyond our immediate relationships in families to a role in a broader community. I think we should have some curiosity and interest in the things that would go on in the world about us. So, those are the things and that requires us to overcome what is an enormous I think suspicion of the broader society of the political, not that it does not deserve it to some degree, but a kind of an enormous cynicism that exist in the society.

Recorded on: 9/27/07

We need to clean up our act, says Mills.

There is no dark matter. Instead, information has mass, physicist says

Is information the fifth form of matter?

Photo: Shutterstock
Surprising Science
  • Researchers have been trying for over 60 years to detect dark matter.
  • There are many theories about it, but none are supported by evidence.
  • The mass-energy-information equivalence principle combines several theories to offer an alternative to dark matter.
Keep reading

The value of owning more books than you can read

Or, how I learned to stop worrying and love my tsundoku.

(Photo from Wikimedia)
Personal Growth
  • Many readers buy books with every intention of reading them only to let them linger on the shelf.
  • Statistician Nassim Nicholas Taleb believes surrounding ourselves with unread books enriches our lives as they remind us of all we don't know.
  • The Japanese call this practice tsundoku, and it may provide lasting benefits.
Keep reading

Greta Thunberg at Davos: 3 straw-man arguments from Twitter & YouTube comments

The 17-year-old climate activist gets a lot of criticism online. Which of those critiques hold water?

CBS News
Politics & Current Affairs
  • On Tuesday, Thunberg gave a speech at an event in Davos, Switzerland.
  • She mainly spoke about the failure of world leaders to act on climate change.
  • Also speaking at Davos was President Donald Trump, who didn't mention Thunberg by name, but dismissed the "prophets of doom" who are calling for increased climate change policies.
Keep reading