Tuesday, October 21, 2008

American lifestyle must change, says neuroscientist

According to neuroscientist Peter Whybrow, head honcho of the Semel Institute for Neuroscience and Behavior at UCLA the concept of the American Dream is a "biological impossibility."

Personally, I've always thought the much-vaunted "American Dream" is the stuff of nightmares.


Tony F. said...

American, European, Asian, African, Martian, Romulan, etc... everybody wants the same thing.


Anonymous said...

It doesn't really bother me that we want stuff. We have always liked bright shiny things and spicy food.

Moving from an agrarian society to an industrial society has, it seems to me, it's inevitable consequences as well as rewards. It's more about how we manage those rewards and consequences that will ultimately determine our fate.

What bothers me most is the movement away from the pursuit of learning. Ignorance is celebrated while intelligence is ridiculed. That, in my opinion, is one of the the scariest scenarios I can imagine for society.


Anonymous said...

His premise is a bit lofty although some of it is certainly true. I would argue however that certain purchases do create lasting happiness. If you can focus your material needs around which "things" will increase your quality of life, then you aren't necessarily reaching for impossible goals.

The hard part is thinking really hard about which items generate lasting happiness rather than short term satisfaction. Throw away the rest and you're doing good!


Anonymous said...

I take up with Michael in this cause.

Shiny baubles, good chow, why not?

In moderation of course.

But the favoring and fostering of ignorance/fundie-ism is way beyond uncool.

Good for those in control, bad for making better societies.