Pragma Synesi – interesting bits

Compendium of interesting bits I come across, with an occasional IMHO

Feel good, do bad

“Moral licensing” is the “tendency to indulge yourself for doing something virtuous”.  Which means that if you are on a diet, bringing your own grocery bags to the supermarket may not be a good idea.

Ethics and the environment : Eco-waverers

When people feel good about themselves, they do bad things

Continue reading

June 6, 2015 Posted by | behaviour, brain, decision making, psychology | , | Leave a comment

Easter Island’s End

One of my favorite essays by Jared Diamond on societal collapse on Easter Island.  From Discover magazine, August 1, 1995:

Easter’s End

In just a few centuries, the people of Easter Island wiped out their forest, drove their plants and animals to extinction, and saw their complex society spiral into chaos and cannibalism. Are we about to follow their lead?

by Jared Diamond

Continue reading

September 30, 2009 Posted by | anthropology, environment, history | , , , | Leave a comment

Jared Diamond on the environment

An essay by Jared Diamond, from Time magazine, August 26, 2oo2:

Lessons from Lost Worlds

By Jared Diamond

Continue reading

September 30, 2009 Posted by | anthropology, environment, history, sociology | , , | Leave a comment


This is a no-brainer — insulating your home will save you money AND help reduce carbon emissions. Nansulate is a new insulating paint that can make this an easy and relatively inexpensive project. This is their home page:

Article from a home improvement magazine:

Click to access midstate_HomeImprovement_winter07.pdf

They have a new “one-room-at-a-time” campaign to save you even more:

The beauty of the paint is that it also resists mold and covers lead paint in older homes. I’ve checked out their safety, and it looks good too. I am also thinking of using their metal-paint-product to insulate the exposed plumbing in my basement.

May 30, 2008 Posted by | environment | , , , , , | 1 Comment