Why even the liberal media wants Donald Trump to win

Why even the liberal media wants Donald Trump to win

Your friends would love this: on Twitter on Facebook on Google+ Controversy sells. And since Donald Trump has entered the presidential race, hell, since he’s been alive, the media has earned good money on the controversy he spews. The 2016 election being the major example of this as it has been setting records in terms of ratings and ad revenue. According to media analyst Andrew Tyndall, Trump was the second most-covered story of 2015. A rich man who runs his mouth got more coverage than the refugee crisis, the barrage of terrorist attacks, the earthquake in Nepal, water found on Mars, etc, etc. The boost he provides to ratings even has a name: the “Trump effect”. Just as adding salt and/or olive oil to any food makes it better (says Seth Godin in a totally unrelated post here), adding Donald Trump to any media piece makes the ratings go up. Tom Huddleston, Jr. of Fortune Magazine reports that CNN charged roughly 40 times its normal rate of $5,000 for a 30-second ad spot during the September GOP debate. And when he compares the ratings of the GOP vs Democratic Party debates he sees that the GOP debates averaged nearly 18 million viewers a piece, whereas the Fox News Democratic town hall drew only about 2.6 million viewers. The difference in ratings translates into a difference in revenue, and Donald Trump is a heaven-sent product that’s cranking up revenue for media outlets. If he didn’t exist, they would invent him. And as we think about it, Trump and the media have been in cahoots for decades now doing just that. What scares...
Replacing God with Technology

Replacing God with Technology

Your friends would love this: on Twitter on Facebook on Google+   “The law against murder is the number one thing preventing murder.” – Louis CK   Violent crime is a part of everyday life. It could happen to you or someone you know. Go on, take a second and think of an example. You most certainly have one. And you wonder “How could this happen? What kind of a monster would commit such a crime? Is he not at least scared of getting caught – by the police or the victim’s friends and family?” As normal citizens we seek deterrents against violence. We know there are some bad people out there and they need to behave. To an extent, we know that they need to be scared straight. When a criminal knows he will go unpunished, he is much more likely to commit the crime. The stronger and more certain the punishment, the lower he will act on his evil impulses. No deep psychological finding there. Throughout our history, God has acted as an effective deterrent. He is the top cop. We’ll take as read that God is a creation of humanity. It is an adaptation to strengthen the bonds within groups. Part of that strength comes from a belief that God is watching us and knows our inner most thoughts. People took an initial concept of God as something that was in control of nature and expanded its role into a force for monitoring your actions and even your intentions. God soon became a way to keep people in line. If the tribe elders cannot watch you all...

Positive and Cognitive Psychology Exercises

Positive and Cognitive Psychology are the branches that seem to be making it all relevant to your life. Scientists create exercises that are designed to change the way you think about things and thereby improve your experience in life without having anything actually changed. This should be the solid footing you need to go through life with a better perspective and ability to handle the inevitable emotional struggles that are a part of life. Feeling good about what you have As I mention in Quanology, research suggests that you’re better off not counting your blessings, but thinking about what your life would be like without the things you have. They call this counterfactual thinking. I couldn’t find any exercises on the internet, so I just created one here: Sit back, close your eyes and think about something good in your life. What is it? Feel how nice it is to have that thing. Hopefully, it’s something personal, something like a good friend or family member. Otherwise, it’s an accomplishment – something you did that shows your ability or your virtue. Now how would it feel if that thing were no longer in your life? Where would you be? Take that feeling of emptiness and amplify it. Make it bigger. It should really suck without that thing.  Doing this should make sure appreciate some aspect of your life more than you currently do. For me, that thing is my family. Sometimes it’s a mess and I’m tired, grumpy, and complaining. But if I use this exercise, I see how amazing it is that I can intimately share my life with these fantastic people. We’ll have fun...

Tony Robbins

This guy is incredible. Some human beings are super-human beings. More importantly, this super-human being is here to help you in life. He is someone people feel strongly about because he feels strongly about everything. There are other self-help leaders but Robbins seems to be in a league of his own. He seems to consistently get real results with high profile people. People like Andre Agassi, Pamela Anderson, Leonardo DiCaprio, Mikhail Gorbachev, and Hugh Jackman. He comes in to help them either get back on track to where they were or to add new perspective on dealing with certain issues. There is no other performance coach I know of who so consistently help such big names. He is paid for this help. Personally, he was recommended to me by a friend. I bought his book Awaken the Giant Within but it didn’t really get me. Years later when I was really lost and had no idea how to get found, I got the audio book Get the Edge. Maybe it was the moment, maybe it was the passion in his voice, but it really hit home. Personal Power had the same effect. Robbins has a very practical, result driven system that puts aside such typical self-help themes as interpretation of emotions and how your childhood made you who you are. He focuses instead on the here and now and helps you to manipulate your emotional state to something more effective. If life stinks, he says, it’s because your mental state and attitude stink. For Robbins, changing these things is a physical exercise. Currently, I’m reading his latest, and first book in 20...

Otto says “Don’t call me stupid”

One of the best comedy movies of all time makes light of the fact that we all want to be seen as smart by our peers. Sure we want them to think we’re good-looking too, but intelligence is more permanent and has a special prestige to it. When we are dumb we feel awful. What’s more, unlike your looks, you can hide your real intelligence level in many ways. In the movie, Otto goes to great lengths to seem smart but underneath it all he knows he’s stupid. Anticipating that others will also think he is stupid, whenever they are about to call him on his he threatens “don’t call me stupid”! A Fish Called...

Matt Ridley’s The Rational Optimist

With so much negativity in the media, Matt Ridley presents a very solid case for optimism. Playing on many of the same themes as Robert Wright in Non-Zero, Matt Ridley shows us Adam Smith’s “invisible hand” at work in the market forces of trade and in cultural evolution. Through specialization we have been able to get better at doing things. This has provided us with something we never had before: surplus. I mean we used to be just like all other animals – eating what we could and living from year to year. But once we could accumulate surplus things, we could trade them. and once we started trading an upward spiral started that had innovation and trade feeding off each other. The more we innovated, the more surplus we could gather, and the more we could trade. The more we could trade, the more wealth we accumulated, because you only trade when you get a better deal! But the beauty of trade is that both parties get a better deal, because both parties only give up what they have for something they want more. This is the famous “win-win” that people talk about. This is what Robert Wright calls non-zero sum games. It is a winning strategy for evolution. The one concept that I want to talk briefly about here is Ridley’s metaphor of ideas having sex with each other. Just as plants and animals have sex in hopes of creating a new version of themselves that is slightly better, ideas mix with other ideas to do the same. I have an idea for a new product and...

Green Eggs and Ham

In Quanology I talk about how every bit of information in the world is trying to improve the rate of proliferation of the genes of its purveyor. Everything is taking sides. Even the innocuous book Green Eggs and Ham. Information helps people, it helps groups, but it is also aligning them together in their quest for a more prosperous existence. Take any bit of information and you can see this. If you read Quanology and have never heard of Green Eggs and Ham, you can have a look here. Green Eggs and...

Personality Characterizations

Personality is your essence. In Psych 101, I remember being surprised by this, thinking personality was psychology. But no, you have a personality and then you develop (developmental psychology), you learn things (behaviorism), you socialize (social psychology), you commit crimes (forensic psychology), you manipulate (marketing), etc etc. Personality is therefore it’s own branch of Psychology. It boils down to who you are. Sure, we’re all unique, but not really. I you’ve ever said “I know the type” then you know that we can categorize people like we categorize anything else. Just how we categorize them is a subject of discussion. Different psychologists coming in from different angles and different psychology branches will find their own way to categorize people. Here are a few. The Big Five This is an official personality characterization scheme which doesn’t use categories, but rather scales. The scales are as follows: Extraversion Agreeableness Conscientiousness Neuroticism Openness to Experience Have a look here for a more detailed description: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Big_Five_personality_traits The Enneagram This categorization is not officially recognized by mainstream psychology but in my experience is worthy of a good hard look. It splits people up into 9 types: Reformer Helper Achiever Individualist Investigator Loyalist Enthusiast Challenger Peacemaker Like I said, it’s worth a look. I’ve found it quite accurate in explaining myself as well as other people close to me: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Enneagram_of_Personality Others For a look at other set ups, please visit our good friend...

Robert Wright’s The Evolution of God

I’ll call this the third in Robert Wright’s Trilogy. He shows us that just like all organisms on the planet, religion itself also developed through the process of evolution. As God is an invention of mankind, the Evolution of God runs in lock step with our own evolution. In short, the notion of God changes as we change, and we are changing for the better. Wright starts us off with the beginnings of religion – when there was no religion to speak of, just superstition. Humans have always had things they couldn’t explain and superstition was the way we explained it to our groups. He states that this was in fact the beginning of religious belief, the drive to understand why bad things happen. Bad things are those things that limit our ability to proliferate our genes. As with any species, we are out to stop bad things from happening, and as an emerging smart, talking species, we were able to try to figure out why bad things happened and how we could prevent them. Obviously, with a huge gap in knowledge in early civilizations, we would simply conclude that God did it. When our group could all agree on why that person randomly died or why a big storm came and killed a few people,  they found they were stronger. Beliefs are a unifying force and groups that believed the same things had better chances of survival against our now major rivals: other groups of people. Thus began religion as a major adaptation to humanity. But with so much war in early life, religion took on very dark tones....