Bringing this forward because it’s still my best suggestion for a Friday night
The Lucifer Effect: Understanding How Good People Turn Evil (Time: About 1:50 total)
A lecture by social psychologist Philip Zimbardo (you may remember him from the Stanford Prison Experiment).
Social psychology looks at the situation, rather than individuals and concerns itself with how behavior is a function of situation, rather than identity. In this lecture, Understanding How Good People Turn Evil, Zimbardo addresses the systems that maintain the situations in which atrocities occur. Good and evil do not fixed unmovable meridian, but are movable and contextual. “Most evil is not done by people, it is done by systems, by corporations.”
Some terms used in this video:
- Dispositional analysis – the characteristics of the individual person to which psychologist and psychiatrists (and some criminologists) attribution causation for a behavior
- Fundamental Attribution Error – the fallacy of attributing behavior to personality over context
- Evil – the exercise of power to intentionally harm (psychologically, hurt (physically), and/or destroy (mortally or spiritually)
Also worth seeing: The Project on Law and Mind Sciences at Harvard University.
(The link immediately above plays the entire lecture but clicking pause required a restart from the beginning so I recommend the youtube series instead.)
Complete playlist of The Lucifer Effect
Warning: Extremely graphic slidehow of torture and humiliation at Abu Ghraib prison.
The false color image of Saturn (at left) is a combination of three images taken with the Hubble NICMOS instrument and shows the ringed planet in reflected infrared light. Different colors indicated varying heights and compositions of cloud layers generally thought to consist of ammonia ice crystals.
The picture was earmarked to celebrate the 8th anniversary of the orbiting Hubble Space Telescope.
The eye-catching rings cast a shadow on Saturn’s upper hemisphere, while the bright stripe seen within the left portion of the shadow is infrared sunlight streaming through the large gap in the rings known as the Cassini Division.
Two of Saturn’s many moons have also put in an appearance, Tethys just beyond the planet’s disk at the upper right, and Dione at the lower left.
Stellare found the video, which discusses Saturn as being its own “solar system”. I found the infrared photo of Saturn. Both are probably the best of the day.
When I enter a cafe, the first thing I perceive are implements. Not things, not raw matter, but utensils: tables, seats, mirrors, glasses and saucers… Taken as a whole, they belong to an obvious order. The meaning of this ordering is an end — an end that is myself, or rather, the man in me, the consumer that I am. Such is the surface appearance of the human world… Now let us describe the cafe topsyturvy.
…Here, for example, is a door. It is there before us, with its hinges, latch and lock. It is carefully bolted, as if protecting some treasure. I manage, after several attempts, to procure a key; I open it, only to find that behind it is a wall. I sit down and order a cup of coffee. The waiter makes me repeat the order three times and repeats it himself to avoid any possibility of error. He dashes off and repeats my order to a second waiter, who notes it down in a little book and transmits it to a third waiter. Finally, a fourth waiter comes back and, putting an inkwell on my table, says, ‘There you are.’ ‘But,’ I say, ‘I ordered a cup of coffee.’ ‘That’s right,’ he says, as he walks off.
If the reader, while reading a story of this kind, thinks that the waiters are playing a joke or that they are involved in some collective psychosis, then we have lost the game. But if we have been able to give him the impression that we are talking about a world in which these absurd manifestations appear as normal behaviour, then he will find himself plunged all at once into the heart of the fantastic.
— Jean-Paul Sartre
Thank you for the cat.
In case there’s anyone who hasn’t heard, a new toolbar version is supposed to be released on 1áSeptember. Some people will love it, some will resist any change, the usual. But then what?
There are some outstanding bugs that are overdue to be addressed. For example:
- the lack of group avatars in the forums,
- contrast settings are ineffective on dark colored backgrounds,
- the review link on inbox notifications no longer takes you to the exact review.
But those are not my bid for the number 1 bug to fix. What I really want is….
- When a user deletes their account, not all of it is deleted. The account name is now available, which is helpful if the same user comes back. Not so much when a new user takes the account name.
Take, for example, the case of dear Alice, who joined on May 4, 2009. Alice has only 6 favorites. But just click on her review bubble — Landogoshen, her review page was discovered Feb. 3, 2005 and there are 356 reviews!
And what a little hottie the old Alice was. Here she is quoted from one of her many reviews that still appear on the new Alice’s testimonial page:
- I am beguiled by you
My nefarious man
You surround me
With your wicked words
And iniquitous fantasy
My need, you use against me
I fall against the deluge
There is no defense to this onslaught
It compels all of me
Time and again
Your language warms me as I unfold
Taking your time, you play your game
It isn’t for the weak of heart
This is not a slow burning rhyme
I know it for what it is
But now I don’t care
Gone is all sense
I am afloat on your tide
You magnificent man
You floor me
Time and again
~The Old Alice
“Well,” XineAnn says in her best Church Lady voice, “isn’t that special?” Quite a pedigree to inherit, though.
Alice has moved on and deleted this account. Perhaps she has another where she swears that relationships are the most important thing on SU, takes her former friends to task for stumbling incorrectly (Alas, relationships can be so fleeting), and instructs people on how they ought to stumble and what their motivations should be.
Or just perhaps, she found someone whose arms she wakes in every morning with a smile and knows that she’s loved. I sure hope so.