Sunday, May 07, 2006


Leftists often follow simple rules and generalizations (e.g. "all men are equal") to an absurd degree -- in defiance of all commonsense. The study below shows that schizophrenics do that too

Now, scientists say they have found that the link between insanity and rationality may be more than a fanciful notion. In some situations-limited ones-they have found that schizophrenics have a reasoning advantage over normal people, stemming from their very lack of what we typically call common sense. Schizophrenia, a long-term mental disorder involving delusions and a derailed sense of reality, disrupts people's ability to see the "context" of events, a key part of common sense, said Emmanuel Mellet, one of the researchers. ...

Mellet, of the Universities of Caen and Paris-Descartes in Paris, and a group of colleagues presented a set of logic problems to 26 schizophrenics and an equal number of healthy patients. One type of problem in particular was designed to turn context into a trap; 90 percent of healthy people typically fail it, the researchers said....

There are many more right than wrong solutions possible for such a problem. In this case, an answer would be correct as long as the test-taker put anything but a red square on the left, and anything but a yellow circle on the right. Yet "sane" people usually give wrong answers. For the above problem, they would often put a red square on the left and a yellow circle on the right, quite compatible with the dictum they're supposed to break.

The error results from misplaced use of common sense, according to Mellet and colleagues.... The researchers reported that in their study, 58 percent of healthy participants failed such problems on all eight tries that they were given. Only 19 percent of schizophrenics suffered this failure rate. "We suggest that, thanks to their difficulty in processing contextual information, the schizophrenic patients ignored the elements that misled healthy participants," the scientists wrote....

Mellet and colleagues noted that similar findings came earlier this year from researchers at King's College London.... The finding supported the idea that "decision-making in people with schizophrenia is less influenced by common sense and more influenced by theoretical reason" than in normal people, the researchers wrote in a summary of their findings.



Press release:

Thanks in part to the skill and dedication of trauma center teams in Iraq, wounded troops have a 90 percent chance of survival - the highest rate of war survivors in U.S. history. Still, 17,124 Americans have been wounded to date, among them 413 amputees, and Operation Iraqi Freedom has claimed 2,313 American lives since it began in March 2003.

"Baghdad ER", an unflinching hour-long documentary that debuts on May 21st on HBO, offers a raw and rare look at the humanity, hardship and heroism of the U.S. military and medical personnel in Iraq. As a result of unprecedented access to the 86th Combat Support Hospital, the Army's premier medical facility in Iraq, 11-time Emmyr-Award winning producer/director Jon Alpert and Matthew O'Neill, along with an intrepid crew, followed doctors, nurses, medics, soldiers, chaplains, and others in the U.S. Military over a two-month period in 2005.

The documentary gives viewers a taste of daily life in the thick of war, including exclusive frontline rescue footage with the 54th Medical Company Air Ambulance Team, and dangerous missions of soldiers patrolling "IED Alley," the most dangerous road in the world. At times graphic in its depiction of combat-related wounds, BAGHDAD ER is a socially relevant account of war in our time - emotional, devastating and honest. Those caring for the wounded Americans and Iraqis demonstrate focused intensity, selflessness and a unified purpose, which "BAGHDAD ER" juxtaposes against the chaos of war.



I liked this parody of Green/Left logic from Taranto: "President Bush is riding high. In just two weeks, his approval rating has skyrocketed to 38% from 33%, according to Fox News/Opinion Dynamics polls. That's an increase of 15%, or five percentage points. If we assume conservatively that his rating will continue increasing linearly (i.e., five points every two weeks), he'll be back at 98% by mid-October. That could give a big boost to Republican hopes of expanding their House and Senate majorities."

Warning to Israel-haters: "US President George W.Bush has used a speech in Washington to declare the US's "unshakeable" commitment to defend Israel from aggression. Mr Bush said the US and Israel were "natural allies" with ties that would "never be broken". The comments, made at a dinner to mark the 100th anniversary of the American Jewish Committee in Washington on Thursday night, were aimed squarely at Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and at the recently elected Hamas regime in Palestine. Mr Ahmadinejad has denied the Holocaust and called for Israel to be "wiped off the map" while Hamas refuses to recognise the Jewish state".

GWB is getting it: "US President George W. Bush has said the September 11 revolt of passengers against their hijackers on board Flight 93 had struck the first blow of "World War III". In an interview with the financial news network CNBC, Mr Bush said he had yet to see the recently released film of the uprising, a dramatic portrayal of events on the United Airlines plane before it crashed in a Pennsylvania field. But he said he agreed with the description of David Beamer, whose son Todd died in the crash, who in a Wall Street Journal commentary last month called it "our first successful counter-attack in our homeland in this new global war, World War III". Mr Bush said: "I believe that. I believe that it was the first counter-attack to World War III."

Whatever happened to self-reliance? "The Senate added money to rebuild a highway in Hawaii; protect riverbanks in California; upgrade a hurricane barrier in Providence, R.I.; and compensate New England shell fishermen for their losses from a red tide outbreak. The Senate also took steps to make farming less risky by offering compensation for virtually any scourge, including drought, flood, wildfires and pestilence."

German City Privatizes Public Housing: "[Dresden Mayor Ingolf] Rossberg reached a deal in March to sell Dresden's entire stock of 48,000 city-owned apartments to an American private equity firm, the Fortress Investment Group, for $1.2 billion. In a single stroke, Dresden wiped out its burdensome public debt."



"All the worth which the human being possesses, all spiritual reality, he possesses only through the State." -- 19th century German philosopher Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel. Hegel is the most influential philosopher of the Left -- inspiring Karl Marx, the American "Progressives" of the early 20th century and university socialists to this day.

The Big Lie of the late 20th century was that Nazism was Rightist. It was in fact typical of the Leftism of its day. It was only to the Right of Stalin's Communism. The very word "Nazi" is a German abbreviation for "National Socialist" (Nationalsozialistisch)

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