“Too many young women I think are harder on themselves than circumstances warrant. They are too often selling themselves short. They too often take criticism personally instead of seriously. You should take criticism seriously because you might learn something, but you can’t let it crush you. You have to be resilient enough to keep moving forward, whatever the personal setbacks and even insults that come your way might be. That takes a sense of humor about yourself and others. Believe me, this is hard-won advice I’m putting forth. It’s not like you wake up and understand this. It’s a process.”—Hilary Clinton, on taking criticism.
“Empathy isn’t just something that happens to us—a meteor shower of synapses firing across the brain—it’s also a choice we make: to pay attention, to extend ourselves. It’s made of exertion, that dowdier cousin of impulse. Sometimes we care for another because we know we should, or because it’s asked for, but this doesn’t make our caring hollow. The act of choosing simply means we’ve committed ourselves to a set of behaviors greater than the sum of our individual inclinations: I will listen to his sadness, even when I’m deep in my own. To say “going through the motions”—this isn’t reduction so much as acknowledgment of the effort—the labor, the motions, the dance—of getting inside another person’s state of heart or mind.
This confession of effort chafes against the notion that empathy should always arise unbidden, that genuine means the same thing as unwilled, that intentionality is the enemy of love. But I believe in intention and I believe in work. I believe in waking up in the middle of the night and packing our bags and leaving our worst selves for our better ones.”—Leslie Jamison, The Empathy Exams (via invisibleforeigner)
“In fact, the evidence suggests that welfare-state programs enhance social mobility, thanks to little things like children of the poor having adequate nutrition and medical care. And conversely,of course, when such programs are absent or inadequate, the poor find themselves in a trap they often can’t escape, not because they lack the incentive, but because they lack the resources.”—The Real Poverty Trap (via azspot)
“Do what you love” disguises the fact that being able to choose a career primarily for personal reward is a privilege, a sign of socioeconomic class. Even if a self-employed graphic designer had parents who could pay for art school and co-sign a lease for a slick Brooklyn apartment, she can bestow DWYL as career advice upon those covetous of her success.
If we believe that working as a Silicon Valley entrepreneur or a museum publicist or a think-tank acolyte is essential to being true to ourselves, what do we believe about the inner lives and hopes of those who clean hotel rooms and stock shelves at big-box stores? The answer is: nothing.
“House of Cards is a terrible show. It’s cynical in all the wrong ways and it shows a “dark underside” of insider Washington that doesn’t exist. There are no “puppetmasters” like Kevin Spacey’s character in real life—the government is not one hyper-competent manipulative person surrounded by the few hundred least competent and most naïve people on planet Earth. He is a cartoon. There are no Democrats from rural South Carolina, either. The show seems to have no idea how schlocky its melodrama and constant fourth-wall breaking can be. The writers seem to delight in setting records for shark-jumping once or twice per season with unforeseen murder and threesomes. There are too many plot lines that don’t work. All of which is to say that I watched all thirteen episodes of season two within thirty-six hours of its Netflix release, just as I did last year, and there’s nothing I would rather do right now than binge-watch another thirteen episodes. No: another hundred episodes. All I want to do is watch House of Cards, alone, all day, forever. Gimme gimme gimme, now now now.”—House of Cards Is a Dark Fantasy of Effective Government (via azspot)
Research shows that many problem drinkers — those who repeatedly drink more than they intend, sometimes have physical or psychological consequences from overdrinking, and may have difficulty controlling themselves — could benefit from brief interventions and practical advice about how to set better limits and change their drinking by cutting back.
I believe within my life time we will treat addictions with harm reduction methods, not just ‘cold turkey’ but managed alcohol and/or limit setting.