Provocations – a list.

Unpopular ideas about social norms.

Some people have missed this disclaimer in the past, so I’m going to say again that I’m not endorsing these ideas, merely collecting them, and I disagree with many of them.

Incest that doesn’t involve children, coercion, or procreation should be socially accepted.

Society drastically overvalues prestige, to our collective detriment.

We should end the tradition of gift-giving, because it’s so inefficient. Gift-givers are much worse at choosing something the recipient will enjoy than the recipient would’ve been.

People in senior positions should continuously have their cognition tested, to monitor possible decline of fluid intelligence, alertness and judgment.

Addiction is mostly rational.

via Marginal Revolution (iirc)

Post Decision possibility.

LPT: Instead of excessively worrying over a decision, decide what you’re going to do, then do things to *make* it the right decision afterward.

The best class I took in my Masters program was a decision science course. The prof had a lot of great LPT-type advice, but one thing he said in particular has stuck with me. He said most people will excessively worry and over-analyze a decision, but then do very little about it after the decision is made. We spend 95% of our energy pre-decision, then 5% after. However, he said a lot of the science shows that very often there isn’t a “right” decision, but there are things we can do after that will make it right. For example, don’t feel like there’s a right/wrong decision to make when considering a job offer out of state. If you do decide to take it, once you’re there do things to “make it” the right decision, like go out and make friends, work hard but keep a good work/life balance, etc. Change that 95/5 split to more like 50/50.

via reddit

*LPT -> Life Pro Tip

SB 827 Autopsy – Why is affordable housing is so scarce?

For the past four months, California state Sen. Scott Wiener has been on a quest to strip his staunchly left-wing hometown of its power to maintain single-family residential neighborhoods. His Senate Bill 827 would have required California cities to permit midrise-apartment construction—buildings rising up to 45 or 55 feet—around train stations and busy bus stops. It was a radical attempt to subvert local control in the interest of creating more homes and would have opened up neighborhoods in San Diego, Los Angeles, and the Bay Area to row houses and small apartment buildings. Transit-rich San Francisco, where Wiener, a first-term legislator, previously sat on the board of supervisors, would have been almost entirely rezoned to accommodate a residential scale about half that of a typical Parisian street.

Opposed by virtually every Californian in a position of power, Wiener’s bill failed in a Sacramento committee on Tuesday. This had been widely anticipated; what Wiener and his co-sponsor Nancy Skinner, representing the East Bay, proposed was nothing less than to upend the entire framework for the past century of American racial politics and wealth building.

From a bird’s-eye perspective, though, it’s not clear that things can get much worse. Consider the Bay Area, where the nurse in San Jose flies into work from Idaho and where families living in cars dump their feces into storm drains across the street from the future Chan-Zuckerberg School, a philanthropic endeavor of the Facebook founder and his wife that’s a five-minute drive from the company’s global headquarters. In the past five years, the Bay Area has added 373,000 jobs and built only 58,000 units of housing. California homes cost 2½ times the U.S. average, and higher still in the coastal metros that SB 827 would address. The California Legislative Analyst’s Office estimated in 2015 that the state’s major metro areas between 1980 and 2010 built barely half the number of housing units needed to keep price growth in line with the U.S. average. Hundreds of thousands of low-income households have left the state over the past decade, replaced by high-earning new arrivals. California is basically one enormous gentrifying neighborhood. What does “worse” look like?

Via Slate

TIME – 81-83 / PLACE – New York City.

NY Times Style Magazine has a pretty groovy thing on this thirty six month period in the Big Apple.Were those three years an inflexion point?

A polarizing Republican in the White House. Protests for equality in the streets. A new wave of sexual self-identification. This was N.Y.C. in the early ’80s, during the 36 months in which it changed art, design, activism, food, literature and love — forever.

Frank Bruni makes the case.

Actors reminisce.

24 hours/Oral History.