flwyd: (McCain Palin Abe Maude Simpsons)
In chapter 1 we described how a common psychological effect of rising insecurity is for people to become more conservative, less generous, and more zero-sum: think pre-Hitler Germany or pre-genocide Rwanda. Many decades of social science literature strongly correlates rising insecurity, fear, and pessimism with authoritarian politics. In difficult situations, the insecure and the pessimistic seek out authoritarian leadership. What's more, social psychological research conducted in laboratory settings has found that manufacturing insecurity and fear, particularly of one's own death, can have the same impact as real social circumstances of fear, such as during a terrorist attack or rising economic insecurity.

Collapse [by Jared Diamond] was intended to help Americans change their social values and create a more ecological society in order to avoid the fate of groups like the Grenland Norse. But in terrifying himself and his readers about the growing risk of social collapse, Diamond's eco-apocalypse narrative risks having the opposite effect. What extensive research finds is that the more scared people become about social instability and death, the less likely they are to change the way they think. Fear of death, wrote a group of social scientists in 2003, engenders a defense of one's cultural worldview.
— Ted Nordhaus and Michael Shellenberger, Break Through: From the Death of Environmentalism to the Politics of Possibility

Nordhaus and Shellenberger argue that people will be more motivated to take action on environmental issues if they're presented as positive opportunities, not dire warnings.
flwyd: (spencer hot springs feet)
This infographic outlines some of the bad ideas about buying bottled water. You use more water making the bottle than you consume drinking it. It costs a few orders of magnitude more. You often get lower-quality water than comes out of the tap (I've heard that places as pristine as Cleveland provide water for bottling). They don't mention the mess of plastic bottles that litter the shores of otherwise beautiful beaches all over the world. In sum, you're much better off, economically and environmentally, if you buy a reusable container and regularly fill it from the tap. If you object to your local tap water (which tastes nasty in some areas of the U.S. and is not safe to drink in many countries), buy good water in as large a container as you can manage and use it to fill smaller ones. My family, for instance, gets reusable 5-gallon jugs of spring water at our local grocery store.

That's all good information, but I really wanted to share this link because the enlarged image has such an absurd URL:
Will they sue for anti-circumvention if I, say, download it?
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