sábado, 31 de janeiro de 2009

Noam Chomsky Lectures on Modern-Day American Imperialism:

Middle East and Beyond

Hosted by Boston University School of Law and the Boston University Anti-War Coalition

Noam Chomsky, an emeritus professor of linguistics at Massachusetts Institute of Technology and a well-known political activist critical of U.S. foreign policy, traces modern-day American imperialism to its earliest roots, 25 years before the American Revolution. If it weren’t for British forces preventing America’s expansion, claims Chomsky, Canada wouldn’t exist today.

Chomsky says the current war in Iraq can be traced back to the U.S. invasion of Florida during Andrew Jackson’s administration, which was an “executive war in violation of the constitution, a precedent that has been followed ever since.”

He compares the United States to a Mafia “godfather,” crushing third world countries like disobedient shop owners who don’t pay their protection money so others will get the point. The United States, he says, has a reputation as “the most frightening and dangerous country in the world.”

Chomsky claims that those in power in Washington, in London, in editorial offices, and in universities are defying the world — the majority of the world’s people, including most of the U.S. population, are against the war in Iraq, agree with the Group of 77 at the United Nations, which approves of Iran’s right to enrich uranium for nuclear power, and support the rights of Palestinian peasants who were removed from their land by Israel.

But there is hope, and according to Chomsky, it lies with South America — whose countries are banding together to work against the oppressive forces of the United States by weakening the presence of American military and strengthening their own economies. The failed attempt of the United States to overturn the results of the recent democratic election in Bolivia, he says, is one example of this glimmer of hope.

About the speaker:
Noam Chomsky earned a Ph.D. in linguistics in 1955 at the University of Pennsylvania and came to the Massachusetts Institute of Technology the same year. In 1961 he was appointed a full professor in the department of linguistics and philosophy and in 1976 an Institute Professor.

Chomsky has received honorary degrees from more than two dozen universities around the world. He is a member of the American Philosophical Society, a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and of the National Academy of Science, a Foreign Member of the Serbian Academy of Sciences and Arts, and a member of several other professional and learned societies in the United States and abroad. He has received the Distinguished Scientific Contribution Award of the American Psychological Association, the Kyoto Prize in Basic Sciences, the Helmholtz Medal, the Dorothy Eldridge Peacemaker Award, the Benjamin Franklin Medal in Computer and Cognitive Science, the Adela Dwyer/St. Thomas of Villanova Peace Award, and others.

He has written and lectured widely on linguistics, philosophy, intellectual history, contemporary issues, international affairs, and U.S. foreign policy.

sexta-feira, 30 de janeiro de 2009

Howard Zinn on Civil Disobedience

A look at Dr. Zinn's views on non-violence and civil disobedience and his actions as a leader seeking to bring an end to the Vietnam War.

"You Can't Be Neutral on a Moving Train"

"To be hopeful in bad times is not just foolishly romantic. It is based on the fact that human history is a history not only of cruelty, but also of compassion, sacrifice, courage, kindness... And if we do act, in however small a way, we don't have to wait for some grand utopian future. The future is an infinite succession of presents, and to live now as we think human beings should live, in defiance of all that is bad around us, is itself a marvelous victory."
- Howard Zinn

In these turbulent times, Howard Zinn is inspiring a new generation. This acclaimed film looks at the amazing life of the renowned historian, activist and author. Following his early days as a shipyard labor organizer and bombardier in World War II, Zinn became an academic rebel and leader of civil disobedience in a time of institutionalized racism and war. His influential writings shine light on and bring voice to factory workers, immigrant laborers, African Americans, Native Americans and the working poor.

Featuring rare archival materials and interviews with Zinn and colleagues such as Noam Chomsky, You Can't Be Neutral captures the essence of this extraordinary man who has been a catalyst for progressive change for more than 60 years.

Narrated by Matt Damon. Featuring music by Pearl Jam, Woody Guthrie & Billy Bragg!

Worse than an Earthquake:

Peace Activist Kathy Kelly on the Destruction in Gaza

President Obama has dispatched George Mitchell on his first trip as Middle East envoy. Mitchell is set to begin in Egypt today, followed by Israel, the occupied West Bank, Jordan, Turkey and Saudi Arabia. My next guest has just returned from the Gaza Strip, where she witnessed the Israeli attack. Kathy Kelly is the executive director of Voices for Creative Non-Violence

quinta-feira, 29 de janeiro de 2009

Ecosystems and Socioeconomic Systems as Complex Adaptive Systems


Simon A. Levin, George M. Moffett Professor of Biology and director of the Center for BioComplexity at Princeton University, explores the best paths to both environmental and socioeconomic sustainability in the second of this year’s two Pardee Distinguished Lectures. In studying how to keep our natural ecosystems robust, he says, we may find valuable clues to maintaining our global networks as well.

When formulating environmental policy, Levin says, we must first ask ourselves how much we value our biosphere. We must consider what our ecosystems provide for us — material goods like food and pharmaceuticals, their indirect role in stabilizing the climate or pollinating the soil for agricultural purposes, or even aesthetic beauty — and also what our ecosystems require — which species are necessary to maintain biodiversity, how these species interact, and what it takes to keep a habitat “resilient and robust.” To do this, he argues, we need to begin to study the environment as a series of complex adaptive systems; we must develop ways to identify patterns at both the microscopic and macroscopic levels and to statistically relate the data across scales and systems. He goes on to describe how these biostatistical techniques apply to human societies, especially in the realm of economics. Yet while we may believe in the “invisible hand” that according to 18th-century economist Adam Smith steers our markets, we can’t leave the environment up to fate, Levin says: “There is no invisible hand that guides or preserves the biosphere.”

About the speaker:
Simon A. Levin is the George M. Moffett Professor of Biology and director of the Center for BioComplexity at Princeton University, where he founded the Princeton Environmental Institute. He is a fellow of both the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and the American Association for the Advancement of Science. He edited the Encyclopedia of Biodiversity, I-V (2000) and the forthcoming The Princeton Guide to Ecology (2009). Levin is a former president of the Ecological Society of America, which awarded him its MacArthur Award in 1988 and a Distinguished Service Citation in 1998. He has received the Heineken Prize for Environmental Sciences (2004), the Kyoto Prize in Basic Sciences (2005), and the American Institute of Biological Sciences Distinguished Scientist Award (2007) for his contributions to computational and theoretical biology and ecology. He will serve as a Resources for the Future University Fellow through 2011. He holds a B.A. from Johns Hopkins University and a Ph.D. from the University of Maryland.

A Lecture by Slavoj Zizek

Hosted by

The Institute for Human Sciences at Boston University

Looking more tradesman than philosopher in T-shirt and jeans and with a thick salt-and-pepper beard, Slovenian-born Slavoj Žižek takes the audience on an enlightening journey through the perceptions of identity and tolerance. His lecture, titled Fear Thy Neighbor as Thyself: Antinomies of Tolerant Reason, begins by asking, “What can philosophy do today? What can it tell the general public haunted by the problems of ecology, racism, religious conflict, and so on?” The role of philosophy, Žižek says, is not to provide answers, but to analyze how we view questions. “How we perceive a problem can itself become part of the problem,” he says. To illustrate his various points, he uses such examples as Martin Luther King, Jr. (GRS’55, Hon.’59), the doomed passengers on September 11’s United Flight 93, and former U.S. Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld, among others. A question-and-answer session follows the lecture.

About the speaker:
Slavoj Žižek is a Slovenian sociologist, postmodern philosopher, and cultural critic. Born in 1949 in Ljubljana, Slovenia, he completed a Ph.D. at Ljubljana University, and between 1981 and 1985 he studied in Paris under Jacques Alain Miler, Jacques Lacan’s son-in-law. In the late 1980s, Žižek returned to Slovenia, where he wrote newspaper columns for the Slovenian weekly Mladina and cofounded the Slovenian Liberal Democratic Party. In 1990, he narrowly missed being elected to a seat on the four-member collective Slovenian presidency. Žižek has published more than a dozen books and numerous philosophical and political articles, edited several collections, and maintained an extensive speaking schedule. He has lectured at universities around the world. His works include The Parallax View (2006), How to Read Lacan (2006), Iraq: The Borrowed Kettle (2004), Revolution at the Gates: Žižek on Lenin, the 1917 Writings (2002), The Ticklish Subject (1999), Looking Awry (1991), For They Know Not What They Do (1991), and The Sublime Object of Ideology (1989). Žižek is currently the international director of the Birkbeck Institute for the Humanities at the University of London and is a returning faculty member of the European Graduate School, Switzerland. He is the founder and president of the Society for Theoretical Psychoanalysis, Ljubljana. A 2005 documentary about his life and work is titled Žižek! and in 2007 the International Journal of Žižek Studies was started. He enjoys a popular following, and even provided the inspiration for the name of a chic bar in Buenos Aires.


quarta-feira, 28 de janeiro de 2009

Climate Change

Science & Solutions

John P. Holdren is Teresa and John Heinz Professor of Environmental Policy and Director of the Program on Science, Technology, and Public Policy at the Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University, as well as President and Director of the Woods Hole Research Center. He is also Professor of Environmental Science and Policy in Harvard’s Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences and the immediate past President and current Chair of the Board of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (the largest general science society in the world). His work has focused on causes and consequences of global environmental change, sustainable development, energy technology and policy, nuclear arms control and nonproliferation, and science and technology policy.

Dr. Holdren is a member of the National Academy of Sciences, the National Academy of Engineering, the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, and the Council on Foreign Relations. Since 2002 he has been Co-Chair of the independent, bipartisan National Commission on Energy Policy, and from 2004 to the present he has served as a coordinating lead author of the Scientific Expert Group on Climate Change and Sustainable Development, reporting to the Commission on Sustainable Development and the Secretary-General of the United Nations. From 1993 through 2004 he served as Chair of the Committee on International Security and Arms Control of the National Academy of Sciences, and from 1994 to 2001 he was a member of President Clinton's Committee of Advisors on Science and Technology.

He has been the recipient of a MacArthur Foundation Prize Fellowship (1981-6), the Volvo International Environment Prize (1993), the Tyler Environment Prize (2000), and the John Heinz Prize in Public Policy (2001), among other awards. In 1995 he gave the acceptance speech for the Nobel Peace Prize on behalf of the Pugwash Conferences on Science and World Affairs (which he served as Chair of the Executive Committee from 1987 to 1997).


The Science Behind What Makes Us Unique

Michael Gazzaniga is the director of the University of California-Santa Barbara's SAGE Center for the Study of the Mind. He also directs the university's Summer Institute in Cognitive Neuroscience. Mr. Gazzaniga serves on the President's Council on Bioethics and is the author of "The Ethical Brain."

In "Human," neuroscientist Michael Gazzaniga explains how humans differ from other animals and explores the evolutionary forces that account for these differences. Mr. Gazzaniga emphasizes humans' social behavior, such as comparing ourselves to others and estimating the intentions of others. He also writes about the importance of language and art in defining the human condition. This event was hosted by Chaucer's Books in Santa Barbara, California.

War Made Easy How Presidents & Pundits Keep Spinning Us to Death

War Made Easy brings to the screen Norman Solomon's insightful analysis of the strategies used by administrations, both Democratic and Republican, to promote their agendas for war from Vietnam to Iraq. By familiarizing viewers with the techniques of war propaganda, War Made Easy encourages viewers to think critically about the messages put out by today's spin doctors - messages which are designed to promote and prolong a policy of militarism under the guise of the "war on terror." Based on the book by the same title.

Source : http://www.mediaed.org/cgi-bin/commerce.cgi?preadd=action&key=125

terça-feira, 27 de janeiro de 2009

In Defense of Food:

Connecting the Dots Between Sustainability and Health

Michael Pollan, Professor of Journalism and Director of the Knight Program in Science and Environmental Journalism at UC Berkeley.

Through twenty years of writing, Michael Pollan has stimulated a national discussion of food systems and helped focus people on the places where the human and natural worlds intersect: food, agriculture, gardens, drugs, and architecture.

Pollan is the author, most recently, of In Defense of Food: An Eater's Manifesto. His previous book, The Omnivore’s Dilemma: A Natural History of Four Meals, was named one of the ten best books of 2006 by the New York Times and the Washington Post. He is also the author of The Botany of Desire: A Plant’s-Eye View of the World, A Place of My Own and Second Nature.

He has been a contributing writer to the New York Times Magazine since 1987 and his essays have appeared in many anthologies, including Best American Essays (the 1990 and 2003 editions), Best American Science Writing (2004), and the Norton Book of Nature Writing. In addition to publishing regularly in the New York Times Magazine, his articles have appeared in Harper’s (where he served for many years as executive editor), Mother Jones, Gourmet, Vogue, Travel + Leisure, Gardens Illustrated, and House & Garden.

In 2003, Pollan was appointed the John S. and James L. Knight Professor of Journalism at UC Berkeley’s Graduate School of Journalism, and the director of the Knight Program in Science and Environmental Journalism. In addition to teaching, he lectures widely on food, agriculture, and gardening. Pollan, who was born in 1955, grew up on Long Island, and was educated at Bennington College, Oxford University, and Columbia University, from which he received a Master’s in English.

He lives in the Bay Area with his wife, the painter Judith Belzer, and their son, Isaac. His website is http://www.michaelpollan.com/

Past Lectures : Aiken Lecture Series : University of Vermont

segunda-feira, 26 de janeiro de 2009

"The Coming Transformation

America, Capitalism and the Environmental Future."

Watch the Video

James Gustave Speth
Carl W. Knobloch, Jr. Dean of the School of Forestry & Environmental Studies, and Sara Shallenberger Brown Professor in the Practice of Environmental Policy

From 1993 to 1999, Dean Speth served as administrator of the United Nations Development Programme and chair of the UN Development Group. Prior to his service at the UN, he was founder and president of the World Resources Insti-tute; professor of law at Georgetown University; chairman of the U.S. Council on Environmental Quality; and senior attorney and cofounder, Natural Resources Defense Council.

Throughout his career, Dean Speth has provided leadership and entrepreneurial initiatives to many task forces and committees whose roles have been to combat environmental degradation, including the President’s Task Force on Global Resources and Environment; the Western Hemisphere Dialogue on Environment and Development; and the National Commission on the Environment. Among his awards are the National Wildlife Federation’s Resources Defense Award, the Natural Resources Council of America’s Barbara Swain Award of Honor, a 1997 Special Recognition Award from the Society for International Development, the Lifetime Achievement Award of the Environmental Law Institute, and the Blue Planet Prize. Publications include:
The Bridge at the Edge of the World: Capitalism, the Environment, and Crossing from Crisis to Sustainability,
Red Sky at Morning: America and the Crisis of the Global Environment;
Worlds Apart: Globalization and the Environment;
and articles in Foreign Policy, Foreign Affairs, Environmental Science and Technology, the Columbia Journal World of Business, and other journals and books.
Erb SustainabilityEvents Archive
Free Sustainability Videos and Podcasts
Yale Environment 360
Yale Environment 360: Environmental Failure

domingo, 25 de janeiro de 2009

Advances on the Neurobiology of Emotion:

Taking Stock
Real Player: 56K 350K
Windows Media Player: 56K 350K

Antonio Damasio Professor of Neuroscience and Director, Brain and Creativity Institute, University of Southern California
USC College of Letters, Arts, & Sciences

The field that eventually became neuroscience neglected the study of emotion for almost a century, largely after the proposals of William James lost favor. It is worth considering some of the reasons behind that neglect and evaluating the state of our knowledge today, a decade after emotion returned to the neuroscience agenda. Besides elucidating the neural mechanisms underlying several emotions, the new research is having an impact on our understanding of social phenomena ranging from moral behavior to economic decisions.

Antonio Damasio is David Dornsife Professor of Neuroscience and Director of the Brain and Creativity Institute at the University of Southern California; he is also an adjunct professor at the Salk Institute in La Jolla, California. Damasio has made seminal contributions to the understanding of how the brain processes memory, language, emotions, and decisions. Damasio's books, Descartes' Error, The Feeling of What Happens, and Looking for Spinoza are translated into over 30 languages and taught in universities worldwide. He is the recipient of numerous awards (including, most recently, the Asturias Prize in Science and Technology, 2005; and the Signoret Prize, 2004, which he shared with his wife Hanna Damasio). His current work is aimed at illuminating the brain basis of social behaviors (ranging from moral judgments and communication to economic decisions).

sábado, 24 de janeiro de 2009

Susan George - Transforming the Global Economy : Solutions for a Sustainable World


Susan George, Chair of the Board of the Transnational Institute ( http://www.tni.org/george ) speaking on "Transforming the Global Economy: Solutions for a Sustainable World", sponsored by the School of International Development & Global Studies, University of Ottawa, 29 October 2008

production: Chris Brown
resources: http://liquidvisual.ca

Integration of the Peoples - Alternative in construction in Latin America

Cecilia Olivet and Ricardo Santos (directors)

37 minutes documentary Spanish spoken with English subtitles

Regional integration alternatives are currently undergoing rapid development in Latin America. This documentary will expose, from the standpoint of social movements, the failure of the neoliberal model in Latin America and the processes of widespread protest that emerged in many countries. It will also show how the struggles of resistance were pursued in conjunction with the search for alternatives. The option has been set forn an alternative regional integration. The movements have advanced concrete proposals in the social, political, economic and cultural arenas and they have emerged as key protagonists in these processes. This documentary aims to present the state of the debate on alternatives for regional integration as this is unfolding among social movements and civil society organizations throughout the continent.
Co-production of Transnational Institute and Hemispheric Social Alliance

Source : http://www.tni.org/tnibook/integration-peoples-video-documentary

Laura Flanders talks

to Phyllis Bennis and Judith LeBlanc at the Obama Inauguration

GRITtv continues its inauguration coverage live from D.C. We take a look at this historic moment and what organizers will be up to in the days after the inauguration. First, an interview with Phyllis Bennis, Director of the New Internationalism Project at The Institute for Policy Studies and Judith LeBlanc, co-chair of United For Peace and Justice.

sexta-feira, 23 de janeiro de 2009

Environment and Economy

"What is the purpose of our economy?"

On October 30th, 2008, in Ottawa, the National Round Table on the Environment and the Economy (NRTEE) hosted a unique round table forum entitled "Securing Canada’s Future in a Climate Changing World", which marks the organizations 20th anniversary.
Brief Biography
David T. Suzuki PhD, co-founder of the David Suzuki Foundation, is an award-winning scientist, environmentalist and broadcaster.

David has received consistently high acclaim for his 30 years of award-winning work in broadcasting, explaining the complexities of science in a compelling, easily understood way. He is well known to millions as the host of the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation's popular science television series, The Nature of Things.

His eight part series, A Planet for the Taking won an award from the United Nations. His eight-part PBS series The Secret of Life was praised internationally, as was his five-part series The Brain for the Discovery Channel. For CBC Radio he founded the long running radio series, Quirks and Quarks and has presented two influential documentary series on the environment, From Naked Ape to Superspecies and It's a Matter of Survival.

An internationally respected geneticist, David was a full Professor at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver from 1969 until his retirement in 2001. He is professor emeritus with UBC's Sustainable Development Research Institute. From 1969 to 1972 he was the recipient of the prestigious E.W.R. Steacie Memorial Fellowship Award for the "Outstanding Canadian Research Scientist Under the Age of 35".

He has received numerous awards including the Roger Tory Peterson Award from Harvard University. He is a Companion of the Order of Canada, and a member of the Order of British Columbia. He has received 20 honorary doctorates - 13 from Canada, four from the United States and three from Australia. First Nations people have honoured him with six names, formal adoption by two tribes, and made him an honorary member of the Dehcho First Nations.

David was born in Vancouver, BC in 1936. During World War II, at the age of six, he was interned with his family in a camp in BC. After the war, he went to high school in London, Ontario. He graduated with Honours from Amherst College in 1958 and went on to earn his PhD in Zoology from the University of Chicago in 1961.

The author of 43 books, David Suzuki is recognized as a world leader in sustainable ecology. He lives with his wife, Dr. Tara Cullis, and two daughters in Vancouver.

For a more complete list of David's professional accomplishments and awards, please refer to his full CV here (31.5Kb PDF).
To read some of Dr. Suzuki's latest writings, please visit the Science Matters archives. Each week in Science Matters, Dr. Suzuki examines how changes in science and technology affect our lives and the world around us. You can also take a look at his book list with Greystone books.

Steady State Economy

YouTube - Sustainable Society

This video is a basic discussion of how to achieve a sustainable society through transition to a steady state economy. For more detailed information, please visit http://www.steadystate.org/ .

CASSE's YouTube channel features short video productions about the steady state economy.

Center for the Advancement of the Steady State Economy

Kingston and Coal Lobby's Grip on the EPA

ANP Video
on Jan 22, 2009

In March of 2000, during the last days of the Clinton administration, the EPA decided coal ash was a hazardous waste. Then, two months later, it flipped. If the EPA had stuck to its guns, the Kingston Coal Ash disaster in Tennessee might have been averted. Now, momentum is building to federally regulate coal ash. Will the EPA make the same mistake twice?

quarta-feira, 21 de janeiro de 2009

Environmental Degradation:

Who's to Blame and What Can Be Done?

San Francisco, CA
Apr 2nd, 2008
James Gustave Speth has been a leader in the environmental movement for more than 30 years and joins the Council to discuss the failures within the political system toward solving the global environmental problems in time.

Speth argues that no matter how hard environmentalists work, the current of destruction against which they are swimming is too swift and so in order to preserve a livable planet for future generations, the current itself must be altered; that is, American-style consumer capitalism.

"Capitalism and the Environment

from Crisis to Sustainability"

James Gustave Speth
Carl W. Knobloch, Jr. Dean of the School of Forestry & Environmental Studies, and Sara Shallenberger Brown Professor in the Practice of Environmental Policy

Beatty Lecture
October 18, 2008
Webcast:View here.

Rampant consumerism must be checked

James Gustave Speth called for people to re-devote themselves to improving the "art of living." By Neale McDevitt

Flu season may be just around the corner, but environmental activist James Gustave Speth says we have a new scourge to watch for: “afluenza,” a virulent strain of consumerism that, if left unchecked, may prove fatal to our planet.

Delivering his 2008 Beatty Memorial Lecture to a full house at the Centre Mount Royal Auditorium on Oct. 18, the Dean of the School of Forestry and Environmental Studies at Yale University said rampant capitalism is the chief culprit behind the degradation of the environment to the point where the planet’s ability to sustain life has been seriously undermined.

Center for Green Chemistry & Green Engineering at Yale
Yale Environment 360: Environmental Failure
Yale Environment 360

terça-feira, 20 de janeiro de 2009

The Spirit of Resistance Lives

Dr. MLK Jr.: Struggling Not To Lose Him

By SO -- SleptOn
Source: SleptOn.com
SO -- SleptOn's ZSpace Page

Too often, we are treated to a view of a romanticized and whitewashed Dr. King in order to fit the man and his struggle neatly within the prevailing political and economic power structures in a largely uncritical and non-threatening manner. This portrayal of Dr. King has been mass marketed as an accommodationist figure and is now so pervasive in our schools, media, etc. that it threatens to neutralize and placate the most ambitious, daring and challenging of King's critique along with his struggle to confront and organize against not only racism, but economic exploitation and militarism-imperialism as well.

Due to such, SleptOn.com offers "Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.: Struggling Not To Lose Him" as a direct challenge (as he would have it) to the views and practices of those who celebrate a thoroughly pacified legacy of a man who likely would not even be invited to his own birthday celebrations had he been alive today.

Given what he stood, fought and died for during his last years, it's reasonable to assume that he wouldnt eagerly embrace opportunities to share a stage with the very folks he would have vigorously opposed.

King said the following:

"With Selma and the voting rights bill one era of our struggle came to a close and a new era came into being. Now our struggle is for genuine equality, which means economic equality. For we know that it isnt enough to integrate lunch counters. What does it profit a man to be able to eat at an integrated lunch counter if he doesnt earn enough money to buy a hamburger and cup of coffee?"

A familiar refrain, as of late, has been Rosa sat, King walked so that he (Obama) could run or some variation thereof. Was that the goal of King's struggle?

Thanks to:
Glen Ford, Brian Jones, Robert Jensen, Jared Ball, Kymone Freeman, Adria Crutchfield, Gillian Moise
Music: Onyx - Last Dayz

SleptOn Magazine: Don't Sleep On The Struggle. Be A Part Of It
YouTube - SleptOnTV's Channel
Z Communications

segunda-feira, 19 de janeiro de 2009

Des films pour la décroissance

Simplicité Volontaire et Décroissance

Seulement quand le dernier arbre aura été abattu,Seulement quand la dernière rivière aura été empoisonnée,Seulement quand le dernier poisson aura été capturé,Seulement alors vous découvrirez que l'argent ne se mange pas.
Un indien Cree
Ne doutez jamais qu’un petit groupe d’individus conscients et engagés puisse changer le monde. C’est même la seule chose qui se soit jamais produite.
Margaret Mead
UTOPIMAGES est une association qui réalise des films pour la Décroissance, parce que ...
sur une planète finie, croissance infinie et « développement durable » sont impossibles, et, parce que la faiblesse de son audience est inversement proportionnelle à l’enjeu qu’elle représente.

20 % de la population mondiale consomme 86 % des ressources naturelles (dont la moitié a déjà disparue en un siècle... et il faudra quelques décennies seulement, pour épuiser le reste).

Non content de piller le bien commun, notre modèle économique fondé sur le développement exponentiel, détruit inexorablement la nature et l’homme, aggrave les inégalités, compromet gravement l’avenir des générations futures.

Pour sauver la planète bleue, notre unique et merveilleux vaisseau, pour retrouver notre humanité, il est urgent d’en finir avec le capitalisme et de commencer à "décroître".

Décroître économiquement et vivre plus simplement, ne signifie pas revenir à l’âge de pierre. Il s’agit de réhabliter toutes les dimensions humaines, de reprendre le contrôle de nos existences en compensant nos peurs et nos manques autrement que par la consommation, d’imaginer de nouvelles solidarités, de re-localiser industrie, agriculture et énergies, de se réapproprier la politique pour décider collectivement, d’imaginer de nouveaux rapports aux autres et à la nature, de donner un sens à nos vies.

La décroissance est inéluctable, mais, nous parlons ici d’aller vers une décroissance choisie, une sobriété heureuse, des sociétés festives et fraternelles. Si nous n’y parvenons pas, le choc sera rude, des éco-totalitarismes imposeront alors "leur" décroissance, tentant veinement d’empêcher la barbarie. Nous avons encore le choix... et peu de temps !

Et, quand bien même la Terre serait illimitée, nous serions contre la croissance, parce qu’elle détruit l’humain en nous.

Nous sommes bien plus que de simples "producteurs-consommateurs". Travaillons moins, consommons moins, et à nous la vie !

J'accepte - Le contrat tacite des gens qui dorment


Ce texte inspiré a été envoyé par une personne anonyme à la radio "Ici et Maintenant" le 11 Septembre 2003.

Mes chers amis,

Le 11 septembre marque le triste anniversaire d'une catastrophe hautement symbolique pour l'humanité.

Peu importe nos croyances ou nos idées politiques, le système mis en place dans notre monde libre repose sur l'approbation tacite d'une sorte de contrat passé avec chacun d'entre nous, dont voici dans les grandes lignes le contenu:

1) J'accepte la compétition comme base de notre système, même si j'ai conscience que ce fonctionnement engendre frustration et colère pour l'immense majorité des perdants.

2) J'accepte d'être humilié ou exploité à condition qu'on me permette à mon tour d'humilier ou d'exploiter quelqu'un occupant une place inférieure dans la pyramide sociale.

3) J'accepte l'exclusion sociale des marginaux, des inadaptés et des faibles car je considère que la prise en charge de la société a ses limites.

4) J'accepte de rémunérer les banques pour qu'elles investissent mes salaires à leur convenance, et qu'elles ne me reversent aucun dividende de leurs gigantesques profits (qui serviront a dévaliser les pays pauvres, ce que j'accepte implicitement). J'accepte aussi qu'elle prélèvent une forte commission pour me prêter de l'argent qui n'est autre que celui des autres clients.

5) J'accepte que l'on congèle et que l'on jette des tonnes de nourriture pour ne pas que les cours s'écroulent, plutôt que de les offrir aux nécessiteux et permettre à quelques centaines de milliers de personnes de ne pas mourir de faim chaque année.

6) J'accepte qu'il soit interdit de mettre fin à ses jours rapidement, en revanche je tolère qu'on le fasse lentement en ingérant ou en inhalant des substances toxiques autorisées par les états.

7) J'accepte que l'on fasse la guerre pour faire régner la paix.
J'accepte qu'au nom de la paix, la première dépense des états soit le budget de la défense. J'accepte donc que des conflits soient créés artificiellement pour écouler les stocks d'armes et faire tourner l'économie mondiale.

8) J'accepte l'hégémonie du pétrole dans notre économie, bien qu'il s'agisse d'une énergie coûteuse et polluante, et je suis d'accord pour empêcher toute tentative de substitution s'il s'avérait que l'on découvre un moyen gratuit et illimité de produire de l'énergie, ce qui serait notre perte.

9) J'accepte que l'on condamne le meurtre de son prochain, sauf si les états décrètent qu'il s'agit d'un ennemi et nous encouragent à le tuer.

10) J'accepte que l'on divise l'opinion publique en créant des partis de droite et de gauche qui passeront leur temps à se combattre en me donnant l'impression de faire avancer le système. j'accepte d'ailleurs toutes sortes de divisions possibles, pourvu qu'elles me permettent de focaliser ma colère vers les ennemis désignés dont on agitera le portrait devant mes yeux.

11) J'accepte que le pouvoir de façonner l'opinion publique, jadis détenu par les religions, soit aujourd'hui aux mains d'affairistes non élus démocratiquement et totalement libres de contrôler les états, car je suis convaincu du bon usage qu'ils en feront.

12) J'accepte l'idée que le bonheur se résume au confort, à l'amour, au sexe, et la liberté d'assouvissement de tous les désirs, car c'est ce que la publicité me rabâche toute la journée. Plus je serai malheureux et plus je consommerai: je remplirai mon rôle en contribuant au bon fonctionnement de notre économie.

13) J'accepte que la valeur d'une personne se mesure à la taille de son compte bancaire, qu'on apprécie son utilité en fonction de sa productivité plutôt que de sa qualité, et qu'on l'exclue du système si elle n'est plus assez productive.

14) J'accepte que l'on paie grassement les joueurs de football ou des acteurs, et beaucoup moins les professeurs et les médecins chargés de l'éducation et de la santé des générations futures.

15) J'accepte que l'on mette au banc de la société les personnes agées dont l'expérience pourrait nous être utile, car étant la civilisation la plus évoluée de la planète (et sans doute de l'univers) nous savons que l'expérience ne se partage ni ne se transmet.

16) J'accepte que l'on me présente des nouvelles négatives et terrifiantes du monde tous les jours, pour que je puisse apprécier a quel point notre situation est normale et combien j'ai de la chance de vivre en occident. Je sais qu'entretenir la peur dans nos esprits ne peut être que bénéfique pour nous.

17) J'accepte que les industriels, militaires et politiciens se réunissent régulièrement pour prendre sans nous concerter des décisions qui engagent l'avenir de la vie et de la planète.

18) J'accepte de consommer de la viande bovine traitée aux hormones sans qu'on me le signale explicitement. J'accepte que la culture des OGM se répande dans le monde entier, permettant ainsi aux trusts de l'agroalimentaire de breveter le vivant, d'engranger des dividendes conséquents et de tenir sous leur joug l'agriculture mondiale.

19) J'accepte que les banques internationales prêtent de l'argent aux pays souhaitant s'armer et se battre, et de choisir ainsi ceux qui feront la guerre et ceux qui ne la feront pas. Je suis conscient qu'il vaut mieux financer les deux bords afin d'être sûr de gagner de l'argent, et faire durer les conflits le plus longtemps possible afin de pouvoir totalement piller leurs ressources s'ils ne peuvent pas rembourser les emprunts.

20) J'accepte que les multinationales s'abstiennent d'appliquer les progrès sociaux de l'occident dans les pays défavorisés. Considérant que c'est déjà une embellie de les faire travailler, je préfère qu'on utilise les lois en vigueur dans ces pays permettant de faire travailler des enfants dans des conditions inhumaines et précaires. Au nom des droits de l'homme et du citoyen, nous n'avons pas le droit de faire de l'ingérence.

21) J'accepte que les hommes politiques puissent être d'une honneteté douteuse et parfois même corrompus. Je pense d'ailleurs que c'est normal au vu des fortes pressions qu'ils subissent. Pour la majorité par contre, la tolérance zéro doit être de mise.

22) J'accepte que les laboratoires pharmaceutiques et les industriels de l'agroalimentaire vendent dans les pays défavorisés des produits périmés ou utilisent des substances cancérigènes interdites en occident.

23) J'accepte que le reste de la planète, c'est-à-dire quatre milliards d'individus, puisse penser différemment à condition qu'il ne vienne pas exprimer ses croyances chez nous, et encore moins de tenter d'expliquer notre Histoire avec ses notions philosophiques primitives.

24) J'accepte l'idée qu'il n'existe que deux possibilités dans la nature, à savoir chasser ou être chassé. Et si nous sommes doués d'une conscience et d'un langage, ce n'est certainement pas pour échapper à cette dualité, mais pour justifier pourquoi nous agissons de la sorte.

25) J'accepte de considérer notre passé comme une suite ininterrompue de conflits, de conspirations politiques et de volontés hégémoniques, mais je sais qu'aujourd'hui tout ceci n'existe plus car nous sommes au summum de notre évolution, et que les seules règles régissant notre monde sont la recherche du bonheur et de la liberté de tous les peuples, comme nous l'entendons sans cesse dans nos discours politiques.

26) J'accepte sans discuter et je considère comme vérités toutes les théories proposées pour l'explication du mystère de nos origines. Et j'accepte que la nature ait pu mettre des millions d'années pour créer un être humain dont le seul passe-temps soit la destruction de sa propre espèce en quelques instants.

27) J'accepte la recherche du profit comme but suprême de l'Humanité, et l'accumulation des richesses comme l'accomplissement de la vie humaine.

28) J'accepte la destruction des forêts, la quasi-disparition des poissons de rivières et de nos océans. J'accepte l'augmentation de la pollution industrielle et la dispersion de poisons chimiques et d'éléments radioactifs dans la nature. J'accepte l'utilisation de toutes sortes d'additifs chimiques dans mon alimentation, car je suis convaincu que si on les y met, c'est qu'ils sont utiles et sans danger.

29) J'accepte la guerre économique sévissant sur la planète, même si je sens qu'elle nous mène vers une catastrophe sans précédent.

30) j'accepte cette situation, et j'admets que je ne peux rien faire pour la changer ou l'améliorer.

31) J'accepte d'être traité comme du bétail, car tout compte fait, je pense que je ne vaux pas mieux.

32) J'accepte de ne poser aucune question, de fermer les yeux sur tout ceci, et de ne formuler aucune véritable opposition car je suis bien trop occupé par ma vie et mes soucis. J'accepte même de défendre à la mort ce contrat si vous me le demandez.

33) J'accepte donc, en mon âme et conscience et définitivement, cette triste matrice que vous placez devant mes yeux pour m'empêcher de voir la réalité des choses. Je sais que vous agissez pour mon bien et pour celui de tous, et je vous en remercie.

Si vous êtes contre, vous pouvez toujours mettre en oeuvre les ressources de l'amitié et de l'amour, de la fraternité et de la responsabilité partagée, réfléchir, concevoir, oser et tisser, comme le permet l'Internet... tout retard rapproche du néant.

Fait par amitié sur la Terre, le 11 septembre 2003

“The Hammer of Ideology”

The Project on Law and Mind Sciences

Mahzarin Rustum Banaji was born and raised in India. She received her Ph.D. from Ohio State University in 1986, and taught at Yale University from 1986 until 2001. In 2002 she moved to Harvard University. Banaji studies mental systems that operate in implicit or unconscious mode. In particular, she is interested in the unconscious nature of assessments of self and other humans that reflect feelings and knowledge (often unintended) about their social group membership (e.g., age, race/ethnicity, gender, class). Banaji's research focus at present is on the origins of attitudes, beliefs, and values. She regards four sources of information as useful in pusuing this question: (a) evolution, which she hopes to understand mainly through the study of primate behavior and its resemblance to human behavior; (b)brain mechanisms, especially the cross-talk between cortical and subcortical regions, (c) development, which she studies through analyses of young children's developing preferences and (d) environments, especially their role in modulating what appear to be innate preferences.
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domingo, 18 de janeiro de 2009

On Language and Human Thought:

A Conversation with Paul Pietroski and Critical Friends
March 17, 2008

This conversation highlighted some of Professor Pietroski’s most recent work and its implications for the fields of mind, brain, and behavior. AlIt also featured Jesse Snedeker, Andrew Nevins, and Bernhard Nickel. Together they talked about new challenges and issues being explored and pursued by those interested in points of convergence among linguistics, psychology, philosophy, and biology. Marc Hauser, co-director of MBB, moderated.

Albert Bandura:

2007 Everett Rogers Colloquium

Albert Bandura is David Starr Jordan Professor of Social Science in Psychology, Stanford University
Biographical Sketch

Research Summary:
Analysis of basic mechanisms of human agency through which people exercise control over their level of functioning and events that affect their lives. One line of research is concerned with how people regulate their own motivation, thought patterns, affective states and behavior through beliefs of personal and collective efficacy. A second line of research examines the paramount role of self-regulatory mechanisms relying on internal standards and self-influence in human self-development, adaptation, and change. These mechanisms are studied in the areas of sociocognitive development, affect regulation, health promotion and disease prevention, organizational functioning, and collective action for social change.

USC Annenberg School for Communication

Harvard Conference: “Ideology, Psychology & Law”

“The Psychological Power of the Status Quo”

Aaron Kay is an Assistant Professor of Social Psychology at the University of Waterloo in Canada. Professor Kay's research has focused on the integration of implicit social-cognitive processes with the study of broad social issues. In his primary line of work, he investigates the myriad ways by which people cope with, adapt to, and rationalize social inequalities. At the moment, this research program addresses questions such as: (1) How do people rationalize and justify their good fortune and bad fortune, others’ good fortune and bad fortune, and the social systems that dictate these outcomes? (2) What are the psychological tools employed in aiding people to cope with the internal conflict produced from participating in social systems that are, in many objective ways, unfair and capricious? As a secondary stream of research, Professor Kay examines how social stimuli that we pay little or no attention to in our day to day lives (i.e., nonconcious primes) can influence deliberative social behaviors, such as those that occur in contexts of interpersonal conflict.

The Project on Law and Mind Sciences

The Third Conference on Law and Mind Sciences

"The Free Market Mindset: History, Psychology, and Consequences"

At this year's conference, leading social scientists and legal scholars will present and discuss their research regarding the historical origins, psychological antecedents, and policy consequences of the free market ideology that has dominated legal discourse and lawmaking the last few decades. More specifics regarding participants, registration, readings and the conference agenda will be announced soon.

2009 Conference Materials
Below you can find downloadable papers and articles related to 2009 PLMS Conference. We will be supplementing these items several times before March 7.

Bernard E. Harcourt, Neoliberal Penality: The Birth of Natural Order, the Illusion of Free Markets, U of Chicago, Public Law Working Paper No. 238 (2008)

This Article represents the culmination of over two-years of historical research, but it arrives at an odd moment, right in the middle of one of the largest financial crises in Western capitalism. In one sense, it is bad timing because the central premise of the Article is that most people today believe that the market is the most efficient mechanism to allocate resources. The federal bailouts of 2008 challenge this central premise and are forcing the American people to reexamine the need for the regulation of the free market. In another sense, the timing is, sadly, perfect. Perfect because the purpose of this Article is to question the meaning of the phrase the need for the regulation of the free market and to suggest that it is precisely the belief in the duality of those two terms - regulation and free market - that is one of the greatest problems we face today. The terms, as well as their companion expressions, market efficiency, natural order, self-adjusting markets, etc., are misleading categories that fail to capture the individual distinctiveness of different forms of market organization. These categories are responsible, first, for facilitating our growing penal sphere, and, second, for naturalizing and thereby masking the redistributive consequences associated with different methods of organizing markets. This Article asks the question, what work do these categories of natural order and market efficiency do for us? The story begins very far in time and place, in the Parisian markets of the eighteenth century, with the establishment of the lieutenant generale de police du Chatelet de Paris and the police of bakers, grain merchants, and markets.

Bernard E. Harcourt, Post-Modern Meditations on Punishment: On the Limits of Reason and the Virtues of Randomization (A Polemic and Manifesto for the Twenty-First Century), 74 Social Res. 307 (2007)
Since the modern era, the discourse of punishment has cycled through three sets of questions. The first, born of the Enlightenment itself, asked: On what ground does the sovereign have the right to punish? Nietzsche most forcefully, but others as well, argued that the question itself begged its own answer. The right to punish, they suggested, is what defines sovereignty, and as such, can never serve to limit sovereign power. With the birth of the social sciences, this skepticism gave rise to a second set of questions: What then is the true function of punishment? What is it that we do when we punish? From Durkheim to the Frankfurt School to Michel Foucault, twentieth century moderns explored social organization, economic production, political legitimacy, and the construction of the self—turning punishment practices upside down, dissecting not only their repressive functions but more importantly their role in constructing society and the contemporary subject. A series of further critiques—of meta-narratives, of functionalism, of scientific objectivity—softened this second line of inquiry and helped shape a third set of questions: What does punishment tell us about ourselves and our culture? What is the cultural meaning of our punishment practices? These three sets of questions set the contours of our modern discourse on crime and punishment. * * * What happens now—now that we have seen what lies around the cultural bend and realize that the same critiques apply with equal force to any interpretation of social meaning that we could possibly read into our contemporary punishment practices? This essay suggests that the form of the questions never really mattered. In all the modern texts, there always came this moment when the empirical facts ran out or the deductions of principle reached their limit—or both—and yet the reasoning continued. There was always this moment, ironically, when the moderns took a leap of faith—an ethical choice about how to resolve a gap, an ambiguity, an indeterminacy in an argument of principle or fact. This essay argues that it is time to abandon the misguided project of modernity—time to recognize the critical limits of reason, and whenever we reach them, to rely instead on randomization. Where our facts run out, where our principles no longer guide us, we should leave the decision-making to the coin toss, the roll of the dice, the lottery draw—in sum, to chance. This essay begins to explore what that would mean in the field of crime and punishment.

Barry Schwartz, The Creation and Destruction of Value, 45 American Psychologist 7 (1990)
Barry Schwartz, Psychology, Idea Technology, and Ideology, 2 Psychological Science 21 (1997)
Scienafic development leads to a technology of ideas—idea technology—no less than it leads to a technology of objects. But idea technology can have insidious effects that the technology of objects does not. First, ideas can suffuse through a culture before people notice they are there. And second, ideas can have profound effects even when they are false—when they are nothing more than ideology. These effects can arise because sometimes when people act on the basis of ideology, they inadvertently arrange the very conditions that bring reality into correspondence with the ideology This potential effect of ideology is discussed in connection with the behavioral psychology of Skinner and the claim by Hermstein and Murray that intelligence is, for all practical purposes, unmodifiable. I suggest that, in general, psychologists must be on the lookout for positive feedback loops between theory and practice that contribute to theory confirmation and thus mislead psychologists into interpreting historically and culturally contingent truths as universal ones.

Barry Schwartz, Why Altruism Is Impossible...And Ubiquitous, 67 Social Service Review 314 (1993)
Deeply held commitments to individualism, atomism, and egoism have moved psychology to underestimate the frequency and significance of altruism, and to seek explanations of examples of altruism that are based in the self-interested motives of the altruists. This article reviews evidence that altruism is pervasive, and discusses the conditions that promote its development in children and its display in adults. However, the article suggests that there is nothing natural or inevitable about the pervasiveness of altruism—that large-scale cultural influences that regulate social relations and contribute to establishing the boundaries between self and other can have profound effects on altruism. The contemporary United States, with its emphasis on market relations between free and autonomous individuals, exemplifies the cultural conditions least condusive to altruism.

Barry Schwartz, There Must Be an Alternative, 18 Psychological Inquiry 48 (2007)
Tom Tyler, Psychological Perspctives on Legitimacy and Legitimation (2006)
This review focuses on legitimacy: the belief that authorities, institutions, and social arrangements are appropriate, proper, and just. Because of legitimacy, people feel that they ought to defer to decisions and rules, following them voluntarily out of obligation rather than out of fear of punishment or anticipation of reward. Being legitimate is important to the success of authorities, institutions, and institutional arrangements, since it is difficult to exert influence over others based solely upon the possession and use of power. This article explains that being able to gain voluntary acquiescence from most people most of the time, due to their sense of obligation, increases effectiveness during periods of scarcity, crisis, and conflict. (Annual Review of Psychology, 57, 1-26.)

Second Conference on Law & Mind Sciences

The Project on Law and Mind Sciences

2008 plms speaker videos

A Madman Dreams of Turing Machines:

Limits of Truth and Mind

Janna Levin is a Professor of Physics and Astronomy at Barnard College of Columbia University

From Levin's recent book comes a strange if true story of coded secrets, psychotic delusions, mathematics, and war. This story of greatness and weakness, of genius and delusion, circulates around the parallel lives of Kurt Gödel, the greatest logician of many centuries, and Alan Turing, the extraordinary code breaker during World War II. Taken together their work proved that there are limits to knowledge, that machines could be taught to compute, that one day there could be artificial intelligence. Yet Gödel believed in transmigration of the soul and Turing concluded that we were soulless biological machines. And their suicides were complementary. Gödel, delusional and paranoid, starved himself to death fearing his food was poisoned. Turing ate a poison apple, driven to suicide after being arrested and convicted of homosexual activities. These two men were devoted to truth of the highest abstract nature, yet were unable to grasp the mundane truths of their own lives. Through it all, you will explore, along with these two odd heroes, if any of us can ever really grasp the truth.

sábado, 17 de janeiro de 2009

Becoming Human

George Lakoff on The Political Mind

FORA.tv Video

The Commonwealth Club of California
San Francisco, CA
Jun 20th, 2008

UC Berkeley Professor George Lakoff discusses concepts from his new book, The Political Mind: Why You Can't Understand 21st-Century American Politics with an 18th-Century Brain.

George Lakoff: Whose Freedom?

FORA.tv Video

Corte Madera, CA
Jul 17th, 2006

George Lakoff talks about Whose Freedom: How the Right is Stealing Our Most Precious Idea and What We Can Do About It. An advisor to the Democratic party, Lakoff states that the conservative revolution has remade freedom in its own image and deployed it as a central weapon on the front lines of everything from the war on terror to the battles over religion in the classroom and abortion.

Professor of cognitive linguistics, especially the neural theory of language, conceptual systems, conceptual metaphor, syntax-semantics-pragmatics; also the application of cognitive linguistics to politics, literature, philosophy and mathematics

sexta-feira, 16 de janeiro de 2009

Philosophy with Substance

Samuel von Pufendorf 2007 Lectures

Dan Ariely: Predictably Irrational

FORA.tv Video
Mar 4th, 2008
Berkeley, CA

Why do our headaches persist after taking a one-cent aspirin but disappear when we take a 50-cent aspirin? Why do we splurge on a lavish meal but cut coupons to save twenty-five cents on a can of soup? We think we're making smart, rational choices. But are we?

In a series of illuminating, often surprising experiments, MIT behavioral economist Dan Ariely refutes the common assumption that we behave in fundamentally rational ways.Blending everyday experience with groundbreaking research, Ariely explains how expectations, emotions, social norms, and other invisible, seemingly illogical forces skew our reasoning abilities.
Predictably Irrational will change the way we interact with the world - one small decision at a time.

"Predictably Irrational:

The Hidden Forces That Shape Our Decisions."

Professor Dan Ariely visits Google's Mountain View, CA

In a series of illuminating, often surprising experiments, MIT behavioral economist Dan Ariely refutes the common assumption that we behave in fundamentally rational ways. Blending everyday experience with groundbreaking research, Ariely explains how expectations, emotions, social norms, and other invisible, seemingly illogical forces skew our reasoning abilities. Not only do we make astonishingly simple mistakes every day, but we make the same types of mistakes, Ariely discovers. We consistently overpay, underestimate, and procrastinate. We fail to understand the profound effects of our emotions on what we want, and we overvalue what we already own. Yet these misguided behaviors are neither random nor senseless. They're systematic and predictable—making us predictably irrational.
About the Author
Dan Ariely is the Alfred P. Sloan Professor of Behavioral Economics at MIT, where he holds a joint appointment between MIT's Media Laboratory and the Sloan School of Management. He is also a researcher at the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston and a visiting professor at Duke University. Ariely wrote this book while he was a fellow at the Institute for Advance Study at Princeton.

quarta-feira, 14 de janeiro de 2009

The Political Mind

WGBH Forum Network

George Lakoff, professor, cognitive science, cognitive linguistics, especially the neural theory of language, conceptual systems, conceptual metaphor, syntax-semantics-pragmatics; also the application of cognitive linguistics to politics, literature, philosophy and mathematics at Berkeley Linguistics Department

George Lakoff, author of Moral Politics: How Liberals and Conservatives Think, Whose Freedom?, and Don't Think of An Elephant!, explores the connections between cognitive science and political action. Why do many Americans vote against their own interests? Humans, he argues, are not the rational creatures we've so long imagined ourselves to be. And savvy political campaigns, therefore, should not assume people will use objective reasoning when deciding how to vote. Lakoff discusses his new book, The Political Mind, and explores how the mind works, how society works, and how they work together.

Life, the Universe, and

the Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence (SETI)

Dr. Jill Tarter holds the Bernard M. Oliver Chair for SETI Research Director, Center for SETI Research at the SETI Institute in Mountain View, California.

Tarter received her Bachelor of Engineering Physics Degree with Distinction from Cornell University and her Master’s Degree and a Ph.D. in Astronomy from the University of California, Berkeley. She served as Project Scientist for NASA’s SETI program, the High Resolution Microwave Survey, and has conducted numerous observational programs at radio observatories worldwide. Since the termination of funding for NASA’s SETI program in 1993, she has served in a leadership role to secure private funding to continue the exploratory science. Currently, she serves on the management board for the Allen Telescope Array, a joint project between the SETI Institute and the UC Berkeley Radio Astronomy Laboratory. When this innovative array of 350 6-m antennas begins operations at the UC’s Hat Creek Radio Observatory, it will simultaneously survey the radio universe for known and unexpected sources of astrophysical emissions, and speed up the search for radio emissions from other distant technologies by orders of magnitude.

Tarter’s work has brought her wide recognition in the scientific community, including the Lifetime Achievement Award from Women in Aerospace, two Public Service Medals from NASA, Chabot Observatory’s Person of the Year award (1997), Women of Achievement Award in the Science and Technology category by the Women’s Fund and the San Jose Mercury News (1998), and the Tesla Award of Technology at the Telluride Tech Festival (2001). She was elected an AAAS Fellow in 2002 and a California Academy of Sciences Fellow in 2003. In 2004 Time Magazine named her one of the Time 100 most influential people in the world, and in 2005 Tarter was awarded the Carl Sagan Prize for Science Popularization at Wonderfest, the biannual San Francisco Bay Area Festival of Science.

Tarter is deeply involved in the education of future citizens and scientists. In addition to her scientific leadership at NASA and SETI Institute, Tarter has been the Principal Investigator for two curriculum development projects funded by NSF, NASA, and others. The first, the Life in the Universe series, created 6 science teaching guides for grades 3-9 (published 1994-96). Her second project, Voyages Through Time, is an integrated high school science curriculum on the fundamental theme of evolution in six modules: Cosmic Evolution, Planetary Evolution, Origin of Life, Evolution of Life, Hominid Evolution and Evolution of Technology (published 2003). Tarter is a frequent speaker for science teacher meetings and at museums and science centers, bringing her commitment to science and education to both teachers and the public. Many people are now familiar with her work as portrayed by Jodie Foster in the movie Contact.

A book about Dr. Tarter for young readers:Looking for Life in the Universe

In Looking for Life in the Universe, author Ellen Jackson and photographer Nic Bishop introduce readers to Dr. Jill Tarter and her thrilling, rigorous, and awe-inspiring work in the field of SETI.

terça-feira, 13 de janeiro de 2009

From here to eternity:

Global warming in geologic time

David Archer is a computational ocean chemist at the University of Chicago.
I have been a professor in the Department of The Geophysical Sciences at the University of Chicago since 1993. I have worked on a wide range of topics pertaining to the global carbon cycle and its relation to global climate, with special focus on ocean sedimentary processes such as CaCO3 dissolution and methane hydrate formation, and their impact on the evolution of atmospheric CO2.

I currently teach classes on global warming, environmental chemistry, and global geochemical cycles. I have written a textbook for non-science major undergraduates called Global Warming: Understanding the Forecast, published by Blackwell Press, and a book for a popular audience called The Long Thaw: How Humans are Changing the Next 1000,000 Years of Earth's Climate, published by Princeton University Press. I am a contributing editor to the climate science blog site realclimate.org.
About the Lecture
Using results from models of the atmosphere/ocean/sediment carbon cycle, the impacts of fossil-fuel CO2 release will be examined – including the effect on climate many thousands of years into the future, rather than for just a few centuries as commonly claimed. Prof. Archer will explain how aspects of the Earth system, such as the growth or melting of the great ice sheets, the thawing of permafrost, and the release of methane from the methane hydrate deposits in the deep ocean, take thousands of years to respond to a change in climate. The duration of our potential climate adventure is comparable to the pacing of climate changes in the past, which enables us to use the geologic record of past climate changes to predict the trajectory of global warming into the deep future. In particular, the record of sea level variations in the past suggests that the ultimate sea level response to fossil fuel CO2 use could be 10 to 100 times higher than the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) forecast for the year 2100.