Sunday 6.4.2017 New York Times Digest


1. Popular People Live Longer

“Being unpopular increases our chance of death more strongly than obesity, physical inactivity or binge drinking.”

2. How G.O.P. Leaders Came to View Climate Change as Fake Science

“Republicans who asserted support for climate change legislation or the seriousness of the climate threat saw their money dry up or, worse, a primary challenger arise.”

3. Neither Hot Nor Cold on Climate

“The problem is that while Paris was not sufficiently rooted in reality, the anti-Paris sentiments that moved Trump weren’t entirely reality-based either. And a clear Republican plan for how to ‘prepare for and adapt to whatever climate change brings’ does not actually exist.”

4. Jerry Stackhouse: A Life in Movies (Hours and Hours of Movies)

“For the past 20 years, Stackhouse has worked to preserve his personal history — on film. During his playing days, he set up tripods to record his workouts. He took camcorders to team meetings. This season, he hired two cameramen to document his every move as a first-year coach in the N.B.A. Development League. He had to build a computer with a vast amount of storage to house all the digital footage.”

5. The Doctor Is In. Co-Pay? $40,000.

“As many Americans struggle to pay for health care — or even, with the future of the Affordable Care Act in question on Capitol Hill, face a loss of coverage — this corner of what some doctors call the medical-industrial complex is booming: boutique doctors and high-end hospital wards.”

6. The Specialists’ Stranglehold on Medicine

“To the extent that we can call it a market at all, health care is not self-correcting. Instead, it is a colossal network of unaccountable profit centers, the pricing of which has been controlled by medical specialists since the mid-20th century. Neither Republicans nor Democrats have been willing to address this.”

7. Why I Wrote This Article on Malcolm Gladwell’s Keyboard

“Do lucky objects actually help us perform better? If we believe in their special power, research suggests that they can.”

8. What No One Ever Tells You About Tiny Homes

“We are residents of tiny homes not by design, but because it is all our money can rent.”

9. How to Raise a Feminist Son

“Boys are particularly responsive to spending time with role models, even more than girls, research shows.”

10. How Interracial Love Is Saving America

“Through intimacy across racial lines, a growing class of whites has come to value and empathize with African-Americans and other minorities. They are not dismantling white supremacy so much as chipping away at it.”

11. What Monkeys Can Teach Us About Fairness

“Societies are shaped not just by disadvantage at the bottom but also by inequality across the spectrum. Addressing inequality must be a priority, for we humans are social creatures.”

12. For Carl Reiner and His Fellow Nonagenarians, Death Can Wait

“There is living and dying; there’s no retirement.”

13. The Fashion Outlaw Dapper Dan

“I think what Dap did, he actually taught an entire generation how to engage with luxury brands. Luxury brands, at that point, were not for us. They didn’t even have sizing for black people. So every time I walk into Louis Vuitton to buy a pair of sneakers, or buy a pair of pants in my size, I know they’re only doing it because of Dapper Dan.”

14. In California, Finding Fat City With the Man Who Wrote It

“The Stockton of Fat City is lurid and legendary. It’s where guys with flasks in their pockets line up on street corners at 4 a.m. to ride rattletrap buses into agricultural fields to pick tomatoes or top onions. Downtown is rife with greasy diners, fleabag hotels and steamy dive bars. Drunks take cover from the rain in incinerator silos. Boxers bust each other’s noses in basement gyms. Dissolute men pine for wives who have ditched them, and dissolute women carp at no-good boyfriends. It’s not pretty, yet somehow, through the honesty of its grime and the earnest way its inhabitants try to scrape and spar their way out of it, it becomes beautiful. Fat City is an Edward Hopper painting, a Robert Frank photograph, a midnight-choir Tom Waits operetta plunked on an out-of-tune piano.”

15. Kareem Abdul-Jabbar: By the Book

“I used to own and breed a dozen Arabian horses. There’s a lot that goes into caring for them, and I wanted to learn everything I could about it.”

16. Soul of the ’60s: Otis Redding’s Short Life and Long Reach

“Always think different from the next person.”

17. John Grisham’s Do’s and Don’ts for Writing Popular Fiction

“Nothing will happen until you are producing at least one page per day.”

18. Photos, Gardens, Birds, Trees: What’s Happening in the Great Outdoors

“He describes how trees communicate using scent; how they experience pain, have memory and make family groups. Trees, he informs us, are able to identify marauding insects by their saliva. Wohlleben describes ‘fungi that operate like fiber-optic internet cables,’ linking many species by sending chemical and electrical signals through fungal networks and root tips. When trees are thirsty, they begin to scream at an ultrasonic level.”

19. Putting Cowboys — and Their Industry — in True Historical Context

“We learn why the story played out as it did — why beef overtook pork in the national diet, why the city of Chicago and not St. Louis grew huge, how the rise of barbed wire contributed to the fall of the cowboy.”

20. Getting Beyond ‘I Love It’: How to Understand Movies

“In Talking Pictures: How to Watch Movies, Ann Hornaday provides a pleasantly calm, eminently sensible, down-the-middle primer for the movie lover — amateur, professional or Twitter-centric orator — who would like to acquire and sharpen basic viewing skills.”

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