Life: Jokes and philosophy edition

“[Heidegger’s students] found him funny, but he did not share the joke because his sense of humour was somewhere between peculiar and non-existent. It didn’t matter: his clothes, his rustic Swabian accent and his seriousness only heightened his mystique.”

—Sarah Bakewell, At the Existentialist Cafe, a delightful book I almost didn’t read and a much more pleasurable, informative read than the philosophers it describes.

Links: Political failure, love in the age of smartphones, academic influence, space, and more!

* “What Americans Against Trump Can Learn from the Failures of the Israeli Opposition.”

* “She phubbs me, she phubbs me not: Smartphones could be ruining your love life.” See also me, from 2012, “Facebook and cellphones might be really bad for relationships

* “Maybe America is simply too big,” something I too have been wondering.

* Potential Conflicts Around the Globe for Trump, the Businessman President.

* “Goodbye to Barack Obama’s world: It is the failing of liberal technocrats to think reason governs how people act.”

* Let’s colonize Titan.

* “Oil Industry Anticipates Day of Reckoning: Prospect of ‘peak demand’ prompts debate and long-term planning by global producers.” Good.

* “College Students Want to Kill Foreign Language Requirements.” It would seem that whatever utility it once served has gone away, and the arguments as to why it should remain are weak.

* Why academics are losing relevance in society – and how to stop it.

* “Trump’s lies have a purpose. They are an assault on democracy.

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