A Condescending Impulse

A Condescending Impulse

In my last few posts I have written about Johann Hari's research into Harry Anslinger, the nation's first Commissioner for the Federal Bureau of Narcotics, and what Hari learned about Anslinger and the start of the nation's war on drugs. Anslinger held deeply racist views which he channeled into propaganda and drug policy in the … Continue reading A Condescending Impulse

Our Devious Minds

"We now realize," write Kevin Simler and Robin Hanson in their book The Elephant in the Brain, "that our brains aren't just hapless and quirky - they're devious. They intentionally hide information from us, helping us fabricate plausible pro-social motives to act as cover stories for our less savory agendas. As Trivers puts it: "At … Continue reading Our Devious Minds

Curiosity and Asking Questions

I keep coming across people who encourage curiosity. The message is that if you want to do meaningful work, to end up in an interesting place, and to have an impact on the world, you should always be curious. Searching for answers, looking around to recognize what you don't know, and constantly learning about more … Continue reading Curiosity and Asking Questions

Answers Versus Questions

I read Michael Bungay Stanier's book The Coaching Habit about a year ago, but I still struggle to adapt his main point into my daily life. What Bungay Stanier recommends is that we ask more questions in conversations, because questions get the other person thinking in a way that develops their thoughts more thoroughly. We like … Continue reading Answers Versus Questions