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A working class disarmed | LBO News from Doug Henwood
A working class disarmed
Second Amendment fetishism aside, there’s an old saying that the working class’s ultimate weapon is withholding labor through slowdowns and strikes. By that measure, the U.S. working class has been effectively disarmed since the 1980s. Here’s a graph of the annual number of work stoppages since 1950 (which includes lockouts as well as strikes—unfortunately, there’s no way of distinguishing between the two). They’re up from the recession low of 5—yes, 5—in 2009, but not by much: there were 15 in all of 2013. Between 1947 and 1979, the average was 303. (The data begins in 1947; I started the graph in 1950 just to have neat decade markers.) They produced a total 290,000 days of what the Bureau of Labor Statistics calls “idleness”; the 1947–79 average was 24,550,000. That’s a 99% decline.

Jane McAlevey, the ace labor organizer and author of Raising Expectations (And Raising Hell)—just about to appear in paperback from Verso—says that her mentor, Jerry Brown of 1199 New England, used to say that workers should strike at least once every two years just to remind them of their power. Those were the days.

The portal to the BLS’s strike data is here.
labour  history  strikes  frequency  graph  tendency 
april 2014 by elev8
What’s Wrong With Our Desires?
We are all familiar with the common situation of getting what we desire and then being dissatisfied with it. Was there something inherently wrong with our desires? Is there any way for us to be more satisfied?read more
Philosophy  Relationships  bad_experience  circumstances  consequence  consummation  daniel_gilbert  desire  desires  duration  emotional_events  experiences  expression  intrinsic_activity  love  mind_and_body  miswant  oscar_wilde  tendency  timothy_wilson  tragedies  validity  from google
august 2011 by aejustice
Depression and Empathy in Couples
Not surprisingly, people who suffer from depression often have difficult romantic relationships — when they have them at all. They tend to take out their depression more on their partner than they would a stranger or friend.

In a relationship where one person is depressed, depressed individuals have a “higher tendency than non-depressed individuals to repeatedly ask for reassurance, demand support in a hostile manner, and display negative behaviors, such as a reduced tendency to smile. Consequently, depressed individuals often burden or alienate their partners.”

People in romantic relationships can typically infer and understand their partners’ thoughts and feelings with a fair amount of accuracy. Even in complex social interactions, couples often know what each other is thinking about the situation. A new study suggests that depression can alter this empathic accuracy in women, but not in men.

Researchers tested their hypothesis in a laboratory experiment that depression might impact our ability to accurately infer our partner’s thoughts and feelings by examining 51 couples who had been living together for a minimum of 6 months.

The experiment consisted of three parts. In the first part, the couple participated in a videotaped discussion with one another. “Discussions focused on eliciting support, with one partner playing the role of help seeker and the other playing the role of help giver. The couples were given an alarm that beeped after 6 min, at which point they switched roles and continued the conversation for an additional 6 min.”

In the second part, each individual reviewed their recordings separately and after watching the discussion in 30-second segments, paused the recording and wrote down the thoughts and feelings they experienced at that time during the interaction. They were also asked to infer and write down their partners’ thoughts and feelings.

In the third part of the study, five coders independently judged “the degree of similarity between perceivers’ and targets’ statements by examining the taped discussions in conjunction with the writings participants generated during the thoughts-and-feelings protocol. A 3-point scale was used: 0 (essentially different content), 1 (somewhat similar, but not the same content), and 2 (essentially the same content).”

Individuals were also asked to keep a daily diary of their mood and relationship feelings over the course of 3 weeks.

What did they find?

Our results largely support our hypothesis that depressive symptoms are associated with lower levels of empathic accuracy among women, but not among men.

In the lab task, women’s depressive symptoms were associated with lower levels of accuracy in inferring partners’ thoughts and feelings, whereas men showed no such actor effects.

The diary task revealed similar results: Women’s depressive symptoms were associated with lower levels of empathic accuracy in inferring partners’ negative moods and relationship feelings. No such association was found for accuracy regarding positive moods or relationship feelings.

There were no significant effects found for men’s depressive symptoms.

The researchers also found that higher levels of depressive symptoms in women predicted partners’ lower empathic accuracy regarding the women’s negative moods and relationship feelings.

As the researchers note, the data suggest that a woman’s depression affects not just herself, but also her partner. Depressed women’s relationships are likely to suffer doubly as well — not only is her empathy accuracy lowered by her depression, but her partner’s empathic accuracy is also lowered. She can’t read her partner as well, and he is unable to accurately read her mood or relationship feelings either.

Although the study suffers from a small sample size, it is one of the first studies to look at how depression impacts empathy and empathy accuracy in relationships. The findings shed light on why interpersonal and romantic relationships might be especially difficult to maintain when one individual is depressed — especially if that individual is a woman.


Gadassi R, Mor N, Rafaeli E. (2011). Depression and Empathic Accuracy in Couples: An Interpersonal Model of Gender Differences in Depression. Psychological Science. doi: 10.1177/0956797611414728
Brain_and_Behavior  Depression  Disorders  General  Men's_Issues  Mental_Health_and_Wellness  Psychology  Relationships  Research  Women's_Issues  Accuracy  Bet  Coders  Couples  Depressed_Individuals  Empathic_Accuracy  Empathy  Hostile_Manner  Hypothesis  Laboratory_Experiment  Negative_Behaviors  People_Relationships  Reassurance  Romantic_Relationships  Segments  Similarity  Social_Interactions  Stranger  Tendency  Thoughts_And_Feelings  from google
july 2011 by gefen
A Mystery: Why Can't We Walk Straight? : Krulwich Wonders… : NPR
So why, when blindfolded, can't we walk straight? There is still no good answer.
science  mystery  turning  npr  walking  tendency 
january 2011 by fitterhappier
The Triggering Effect Part 6: Slippery People, Places, or Situations
You need to identify specific triggers - the people, places, and situations that are high-risk. Slippery people could be your ex-lover, certain family members, or past using/party buddies. A slippery place might be a bar you used to frequent, a casino, or an area in your community where you cruised. In essence any place that triggers a positive association about the use of your drug of choice. Slippery situations could be an emotionally charged social gathering, such as a wedding, family event, or vacation.
Medication may be a trigger for which you need to be accountable. While there are situations where medication is needed, you are at high risk to abuse. You need to be proactive in how you are going to cope with this situation, because it is likely your brain is going to remember a good feeling, saying more is better. There is also a tendency to look for outside fixes too readily. Just because you are agitated doesn't mean you need a prescription pill. Just because your knee hurts, you don't need to take your sister's pain meds. Or if you have difficulty sleeping it doesn't automatically mean a sleeping pill is indicated. Again, there are situations where medications are necessary, but self-diagnosis and/or self-prescribing only create a recipe for disaster.
What are the people, places or situations that are potential triggers? What provides safety for you to not get triggered? What triggers can you avoid? For example, do you really need to be at this family event? Is it worth the risk? That is what you always need to ask yourself.
You don't need to test yourself, and you don't have to prove anything; this isn't a contest. If you can't avoid a certain place, can you lessen the contact or time? Meaning, you go to the family event, but you know you will leave early.
While some decisions around triggers are absolute, others are not necessary for your entire life. Know your triggers and make a plan accordingly.
In the face of a trigger, what do you need to do?
What do you need to tell yourself?
To whom can you reach out to for support and/or problem solving?
Today in recovery you have options:
Practice staying in the present; don't sit in the past or project into the future. Validate the gifts of recovery for the day - practice gratitude daily. Identify, build and use a support system - you need to stay connected. History and experience have proven time and time again that recovery is not a solitary process and cannot be sustained in isolation. Trust your Higher Power is on your side.  
Addiction  brain  buddies  decisions  disaster  family_members  medication  pain_meds  prescription_pill  proactive  self_diagnosis  sleeping_pill  tendency  from google
december 2009 by aejustice

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