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Things Are Good: Men: Drink With Your Friends to Stay Healthy

Now there’s the perfect excuse to go watch the game with your friends or just chillax in a bar! It turns out that males really benefit when they engage in face to face activities with their friends twice a week regardless of what they actually do.

So go out tonight with your friends and have . . . → Read More: Things Are Good: Men: Drink With Your Friends to Stay Healthy

The Scott Ross: Conservatives: Only The Rich Can Benefit From Nonprofits

Conservatives believe Justin Trudeau is wrong to take money from nonprofit organizations because to them that’s the job of rich investors on Bay Street.

According to this current government and its recent announcements on social impact bonds the only people who should be making money from nonprofit organizations are financiers, speculators, and venture capitalists.

. . . → Read More: The Scott Ross: Conservatives: Only The Rich Can Benefit From Nonprofits

The Scott Ross: Conservatives: Only The Rich Can Benefit From Nonprofits

Conservatives believe Justin Trudeau was wrong to take money from nonprofit organizations because to this government that’s the job for rich investors on Bay Street. According to the Conservatives in power in Ottawa and their recent proposal for social… . . . → Read More: The Scott Ross: Conservatives: Only The Rich Can Benefit From Nonprofits

Things Are Good: Consumers Care About Social Responsibility

I recall early in the last decade that companies didn’t respond to calls for corporate social responsibility because consumers didn’t care. That seems to have changed, which is a very good thing. Since then, corporations have had to accommodate the growing concerns of people and have even gone so far to create new brands that . . . → Read More: Things Are Good: Consumers Care About Social Responsibility

The Scott Ross: Idle No More Will Fail Unless Votes Follow

Idle No More will fail, not because aboriginals don’t matter, but because they don’t vote.

Elections Canada has tracked federal voter turnout on First Nations Reserves since the 2004 general election, and over that time period aboriginal turnout was on average 28% less than that of all Canadians.

Accounting for the growth in the aboriginal . . . → Read More: The Scott Ross: Idle No More Will Fail Unless Votes Follow

Death By Trolley: What issue do you wish you cared more about?

There are a lot of important moral/political/pragmatic issues. Far too many for one person to even be aware of, let alone be informed on and/or personally active in addressing.

I believe that you cannot choose your interests or your passions. You can decide to try to get into something -e.g., by talking to people who . . . → Read More: Death By Trolley: What issue do you wish you cared more about?

The Scott Ross: Preventing Bullying of Amanda Todd Just As Important As Preventing Her Suicide

Amanda Todd’s death has put the focus on bullying but in only attempting to solve half of the problem, we’re barely solving any of it.

Bullying has plagued every generation, social media, however, in fostering a detached schoolyard mentality, has only made things worse. Current programs to combat bullying are needed to help prevent . . . → Read More: The Scott Ross: Preventing Bullying of Amanda Todd Just As Important As Preventing Her Suicide

Things Are Good: Seniors Who Are Social Are Healthier

Seniors who lead active lives like playing cards and generally hanging out with friends feel healthier and are healthier than there less social peers. Friends make things fun and keep you fit!

Dr. Nicole Anderson is a clinical neuropsychologist at Baycrest Health Sciences in Toronto, where she’s leading a research project called BRAVO. It . . . → Read More: Things Are Good: Seniors Who Are Social Are Healthier

The Scott Ross: Conservatives Can’t Avoid Social Responsibility

There is no stronger conservative principle than personal responsibility, however this Conservative government has shown that when people are only responsible to themselves, social well-being suffers, eventually including the well-being of Conservatives.

This apparent contradiction is obvious in that though Conservatives believe in personal responsibility, they also claim the largest government deficits in Canadian history . . . → Read More: The Scott Ross: Conservatives Can’t Avoid Social Responsibility

DeSmogBlog: Climate Denial Hits Brazil

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Last year, I wrote about how journalists in developing nations were doing a better job of covering climate change, largely because denial hadn’t really taken root in many of these countries. In particular, I singled out Brazil for praise: According to a study by James Painter of the Reuters . . . → Read More: DeSmogBlog: Climate Denial Hits Brazil

DeSmogBlog: Rio-Inspired Optimism (If Not Optimism About Rio)

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If the goal was to get the world focused on sustainable development, then this definitely counts as terrible timing.

With global leaders pressured by the unending European debt saga—which most recently has engulfed Spain, the euro zone’s fourth largest economy—it’s not surprising that environmental concerns aren’t exactly at the front . . . → Read More: DeSmogBlog: Rio-Inspired Optimism (If Not Optimism About Rio)

The Scott Ross: Arguments For Free Post-Secondary Education

1. Free post-secondary education is a student loan that the country takes out and gets more money back than it ever put in. The government will receive more money from income taxes on the resulting increased salaries and wages of graduates than it spent on the initial investment for free higher education. (Compared to high . . . → Read More: The Scott Ross: Arguments For Free Post-Secondary Education

DeSmogBlog: How Do We Explain Scientifically Literate But Anti-Science Conservatives? Paging Drs. Dunning and Kruger

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As regular readers of this blog know, I have spent a lot of time discussing what we call the “smart idiot” effect: Political conservatives who know more about science—or, have a higher level of education—tend to be more in denial of science or facts in contested areas, like global warming, than . . . → Read More: DeSmogBlog: How Do We Explain Scientifically Literate But Anti-Science Conservatives? Paging Drs. Dunning and Kruger

DeSmogBlog: The Polarizing Poles: Yet Another Study Shows That More Knowledgeable Conservatives Are *Worse* on Global Warming

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Bloggers and commentators have been talking a lot lately about a recent study, by Dan Kahan and colleagues in Nature Climate Change, capturing what I call the “smart idiot” effect: Conservatives who are more educated, or have a higher degree of scientific literacy, are more strongly in denial (or less worried) . . . → Read More: DeSmogBlog: The Polarizing Poles: Yet Another Study Shows That More Knowledgeable Conservatives Are *Worse* on Global Warming

The Scott Ross: Canada’s #1 Social Problem: There Aren’t Any More Social Problems

What’s worse than being a fat, polluting, racist, ignorant jerk? That’s easy, not knowing you are one.

And what’s worse than even that? Being in a society full of people just like you, where no one is aware of immoral conduct, of greed, of sexism, and of the ignorance that protects it all.

Though great . . . → Read More: The Scott Ross: Canada’s #1 Social Problem: There Aren’t Any More Social Problems

DeSmogBlog: Us and Them: The Psychology Behind the Heartland Institute Billboards

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The Heartland Institute’s jaw-droppingly ill-advised, and now withdrawn billboard campaign—pictured here—has drawn a huge volume of denunciations in the last week. There’s not much more to say substantively about the campaign, or the fallout from it, which has included a number of Heartland funders heading for the hills.

But it is fascinating to . . . → Read More: DeSmogBlog: Us and Them: The Psychology Behind the Heartland Institute Billboards

DeSmogBlog: A View From Nowhere? The Case Against Knee-Jerk Centrism When It Comes to Politics and Science

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Debate over The Republican Brain is mounting, as emotional (and highly extraverted?) conservatives fling meaningless attacks at the book—attacks so off target it’s doubtful in most cases that the critics read the book—but scientists admit that it represents the research on ideology accurately. That’s what just happened Saturday morning on MSNBC’s . . . → Read More: DeSmogBlog: A View From Nowhere? The Case Against Knee-Jerk Centrism When It Comes to Politics and Science

The Scott Ross: A Genetic Justification For Liberalism

It’s little wonder that liberalism endorses science when no other ideology is more endorsed by it.

Foundational liberal principles have been recently strengthened by new research, solidifying the ideology not just in abstract philosophy but empirically in human nature.

The liberal belief in equality and that government has a role in actively improving society . . . → Read More: The Scott Ross: A Genetic Justification For Liberalism

DeSmogBlog: Got Framing? Why Scientists Must Pay Attention to Communication Science, and Not Just as an Afterthought

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There was the Tweet, from Andy Revkin: “Scientists Call For Stronger Global Governance To Address Climate Change.” Revkin linked to a Forbes story, that, in turn, linked to a new paper in Science by the “Earth System Governance Project,” described as “the largest social science research network in the area of . . . → Read More: DeSmogBlog: Got Framing? Why Scientists Must Pay Attention to Communication Science, and Not Just as an Afterthought

The Scott Ross: Opposing Labour & Other Bad Driving Habits

Nowadays people oppose strikes like they drive a car. It’s not about the all the people going forward anymore, it’s only about one person getting where they want to go.

Decades ago when unions went on strike the average joes not only put up with it, they supported it; today any strike is seen as . . . → Read More: The Scott Ross: Opposing Labour & Other Bad Driving Habits

DeSmogBlog: Don’t Blame the Victims: Why Public Outreach By Climate Scientists is More Vital Than Ever

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In the last few years—and especially in the wake of the ClimateGate pseudo-scandal—climate researchers have become much more politically engaged. They’ve sought to become better at communication, and to have a greater influence on public policy. They’ve tried to establish rapid response capabilities, and also, better ways of protecting themselves from . . . → Read More: DeSmogBlog: Don’t Blame the Victims: Why Public Outreach By Climate Scientists is More Vital Than Ever

The Scott Ross: We All Lose In BC Teacher Labour Dispute

Who will win in the latest labour dispute between BC teachers and the provincial government? It doesn’t matter, we are already losing.

Now a politician isn’t going to tell a province this, a union representative isn’t going to hold a press conference to point it out, and people aren’t going to buy a newspaper to . . . → Read More: The Scott Ross: We All Lose In BC Teacher Labour Dispute

DeSmogBlog: A Call to Support Michael Mann

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I've been a great ally of my latest Point of Inquiry guest Michael Mann, and even called him a climate hero. I've blurbed his new book, saying the following:

"Although not initially of his own choosing, Michael Mann has been the most important, resilient, and outspoken warrior in the climate battle—responding to threats . . . → Read More: DeSmogBlog: A Call to Support Michael Mann

DeSmogBlog: In Which Climate “Skeptics” Drop the Lysenko Bomb. No, I’m Not Kidding….

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There has been a much justified uproar over last week’s Wall Street Journal op-ed, in which a group of scientific “skeptics” reiterate the old line that we don’t have to worry about global warming, and that those who do so are engaging in climate “alarmism.” Ample refutations have been penned; in . . . → Read More: DeSmogBlog: In Which Climate “Skeptics” Drop the Lysenko Bomb. No, I’m Not Kidding….

The Scott Ross: Slack-tivists All

People who click “like” on Facebook to show support for a cause are slacktivists, you on the other hand with your “Support Our Troops” bumper sticker, breast cancer ribbon fleece and poppy laden dashboard are not.

Slacktivism is a pejorative term that refers to easy and simple gestures, relatively symbolic acts in support of an . . . → Read More: The Scott Ross: Slack-tivists All