sociology

The Best Stuff We've Read This Week

Every week Josh and Chuck read tons of articles and some of them are pretty great. Here are the best of the bunch.

The Best Stuff We've Read This Week

Each week, Josh and Chuck read a ton of material. Here are links to the best of the bunch. Enjoy them with our compliments.

The Best Stuff We've Read This Week

Each week, Chuck and Josh read tons of articles. Here are the best of the bunch. Enjoy them with our compliments.

The Best Stuff We've Read This Week

Every week, Josh and Chuck read tons of material. Here they share with you the best of the bunch. Enjoy it in good health.

Why not just hate the pushy psychology brochures?

Humans don't like being pushed around, especially when it's some pencil neck psychology brochure doing the pushing and it's telling them not to hate another group. This is America, you can't tell an American who not to hate!

Why Comparing Japan to New Orleans is Disingenuous

Much has been made of the zero reports of looting following the Japanese earthquake, the ensuing tsunami that may have ultimately claimed upwards of 100,000 lives, and the still growing nuclear crisis. This point has often been made with an wink toward racism; that is, in comparison to the rampant looting that broke out in the predominantly black, poor sections of New Orleans following Hurricane Katrina.

TechCrunch ran an op-ed piece a couple weeks ago (thanks for the link, LOML) prognosticating that the relentless push of social media will soon be accountable for erasure of the line between business reputation and real life reputation. The bottom line, says the article's author, Michael Arrington, is that reputation is dead. In the near future, there will be nothing but reality. And is that such a bad thing? How horrible is reality? The guy who is ever chipper when you see him in the break room weekday mornings has been drunk at a wedding before. You know this because you've seen photos of him in suspenders, cigar dangling inexpertly between clenched teeth and all.

Chemical Ali was hanged yesterday in Iraq. He was the cousin of Saddam Hussein. Under his cousin's regime, Ali Hassan al-Majid ordered and orchestrated, among other things, the 1988 chemical weapons drops that killed 5,000 of his own Kurdish countrymen. A year before that, he was the official in charge of the massacre of hundreds of thousands of ethnic Kurds in Iraq with poison gas. He ordered the survivors be killed. Ali liked the chemical weapons, which is how he got his nickname, and, not coincidentally, why he was hanged. On PRI's The World today, Barim Hasali, the Prime Minister of Kurdistan, is introduced as a person who opposes the death penalty. He made a special exception for Ali. "I am against the death penalty," Hasali said. "But I have to admit: In the case of people like Ali Hassan al-Majid, I cannot be true to my feelings about the death penalty."

There is a massive, albeit subtle to those of us not really paying attention, grab being made by the field of sociology right now. The social science is making a move to wrestle control of the study of murder from its soft science sister field of psychology. I find this intensely interesting. For the last X decades, since psychology has been around really, the field has had complete and unadulterated domain over the crime of murder. When Jack the Ripper was running around Whitechapel, the cops rounded up everyone who even seemed crazy and sent them off to asylums. The tacit implication was that anyone who butchered women must be insane.