Points to Pon­der

Reader's Digest International - - Contents -

MUSICOLOGISTS ES­TI­MATE that for ev­ery hour of mu­sic lis­ten­ing in the typ­i­cal per­son’s life­time, 54 min­utes are spent with songs we’ve al­ready heard. Forget the next big thing. We’re all suck­ers for the last big thing.

DEREK THOMP­SON, editor, in the At­lantic

MOST AMER­I­CANS—84 per­cent— saw sci­ence as a pos­i­tive force in so­ci­ety. Yet … all age-groups had a rather flimsy grasp of sim­ple sci­en­tific con­cepts, even those taught in most public high schools, such as grav­ity or the struc­ture of the atom.

PRIYAMVADA NATARA­JAN, PHD, astron­omy and physics pro­fes­sor, in the New York Re­view of Books, on a 2009 poll

START-UPS that ad­dressed eye prob­lems drew $848.9 mil­lion [in 2013], mak­ing eyes the or­gan that was most at­trac­tive to ven­ture cap­i­tal in [that year].

BRIAN GORMLEY, re­porter, in the Wall Street Jour­nal

SIT IN ANY AIR­PORT LOUNGE and look around at the num­ber of peo­ple who are hunched over, look­ing at a de­vice. The ma­chines have al­ready won—just in a way that the Ter­mi­na­tor films didn’t imag­ine.

JAMES CAMERON, di­rec­tor, in Fast Com­pany

THERE ARE 12 pres­i­dents in Africa who credit a Peace Corps vol­un­teer with start­ing them on the path to the pres­i­dency.

CARRIE HESSLER-RADELET, di­rec­tor of the Peace Corps, in the Ro­tar­ian

The stu­pid­est ar­gu­ment to have with some­body is when you tell them what to like. How can some­body ar­gue with you about what you like? “Hot sauce? How can you like hot sauce?” Hey, it’s my mouth.

AN­DRÉ BEN­JAMIN, ac­tor and mu­si­cian, in Esquire

All I ever wanted since I ar­rived here on earth was the same things I needed as a baby, to go from cold to warm, lonely to held, the ves­sel to the giver, empty to full.

ANNE LAMOTT, au­thor, in her book Small Vic­to­ries WE HAVE SOUGHT scape­goats [for mass shoot­ings] in mi­nor­ity cul­tures, racial groups, and now the men­tally ill. When we are ready to ac­cept that the de­mon is within us all, we can be­gin to treat the cy­cle of anger and suf­fer­ing.

LAURA L. HAYES, PHD,

psy­chol­o­gist, on slate.com WHAT WE DO ON­LINE [and] who we fol­low … will say more about us than we could ever think to tell our shrinks. To­day, Freud would be a big data an­a­lyst, con­sum­ing all we post on­line as a proxy for our dreams.

MARK CUBAN,

en­tre­pre­neur and in­vestor, on cnn.com ALL HAPPY COM­PA­NIES are dif­fer­ent: Each one earns a mo­nop­oly by solv­ing a unique prob­lem. All failed com­pa­nies are the same: They failed to es­cape com­pe­ti­tion.

PETER THIEL,

PayPal cofounder, in his book Zero to One CHIL­DREN ES­PE­CIALLY need soli­tude. Soli­tude is the pre­con­di­tion for hav­ing a con­ver­sa­tion with your­self. This ca­pac­ity to be with your­self and dis­cover your­self is the bedrock of de­vel­op­ment.

SHERRY TURKLE, PHD,

so­ci­ol­o­gist, in Sci­en­tific Amer­i­can Politi­cians aren’t the only ones with the power to de­clare a cri­sis … Reg­u­lar peo­ple can too. Slav­ery wasn’t a cri­sis for Amer­i­can elites un­til abo­li­tion­ism turned it into one … Sex dis­crim­i­na­tion wasn’t a cri­sis un­til fem­i­nism turned it into one.

NAOMI KLEIN, jour­nal­ist , in her book This Changes Ev­ery­thing

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