Gravediggress – CocoRosie

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Lunacy

He wondered, as he had many times wondered before, whether he himself was a lunatic. Perhaps a lunatic was simply a minority of one. At one time it had been a sign of madness to believe that the earth goes round the sun; to-day, to believe that the past is inalterable. He might be alone in holding that belief, and if alone, then a lunatic. But the thought of being a lunatic did not greatly trouble him: the horror was that he might also be wrong.

New Nordic Diet

Apparently I missed out on this diet trend from 2015, but The New Nordic Diet (old now though I guess haha), is an interesting nutrition philosophy and considered a friendly rival to The Mediterranean Diet.

The manifesto:

1) To express the purity, freshness, simplicity and ethics we wish to associate to our region.
2) To reflect the changes of the seasons in the meal we make.
3) To base our cooking on ingredients and produce whose characteristics are particularly in our climates, landscapes and waters.
4) To combine the demand for good taste with modern knowledge of health and well-being.
5) To promote Nordic products and the variety of Nordic producers – and to spread the word about their underlying cultures.
6) To promote animal welfare and a sound production process in our seas, on our farmland and in the wild.
7) To develop potentially new applications of traditional Nordic food products.
8) To combine the best in Nordic cookery and culinary traditions with impulses from abroad.
9) To combine local self-sufficiency with regional sharing of high-quality products.
10) To join forces with consumer representatives, other cooking craftsmen, agriculture, fishing, food, retail and wholesales industries, researchers, teachers, politicians and authorities on this project for the benefit and advantage of everyone in the Nordic countries.

I think you could argue there is a “New American Diet”, although it is routinely mocked as classist or hipster food snobbery. Well, its understandable that in a society where so many of us suffer economically because of debt and stagnant wages, that some would turn their nose up at the higher price tags of the foods produced this way compared to the factory farmed products and overly processed junk foods. Yet this is just another of a million things that have its root in the fact that we are so overdue campaign finance reform. We have legislation that punishes permacultural ventures and small local farms in favor of wealthy lobbyists for unethical and earth-destroying Big Ag and there is nothing the people can do to stop it… except wake up of course and force campaign finance reform to pass… but I’m digressing.

I have been trying to adjust my diet to seasonal produce for some time. I think it is important taste-wise, nutrition-wise, environment-wise to reduce food miles and eat produce which has ripened naturally, instead of being picked unripe so that it can travel across the world, and animals which have been husbanded in a way that respects their natural instincts. I don’t do so perfectly, but to inform my decisions, I use the handy web site eattheseasons.com. Autumn is one of my favorite food times because now the following foods are ripe:

bell peppers, beets, broccoli, broccolini, brussels sprouts, butternut squash, cauliflower, celery root, chard, collards, fennel, garlic, leeks, parsnip, potatoes (maincrop), pumpkin, rutabaga, salsify, spinach, sweet potatoes, sunchoke, turnips, wild mushrooms

almonds, apples, chestnuts, cranberries, pears, persimmon, pomegranate

duck, lamb, partridge, pheasant, rabbit, venison

Yum!

And for my fellow Georgians, you can get a more specific accounting of what is ready to eat when here at https://www.thespruce.com/georgia-seasonal-fruits-and-vegetables-2217175.

Nucleus Accumbens

I think everybody at this point knows about Dopamine- but did you know the central role of the reward circuit is played by the Nucleus Accumbens? Maybe so, can’t say I had my eye trained on it at least, prior to it coming up in the “Neural substrates of Valuation” videos on the Neuroeconomics coursera course.

The Nucleus accumbens (NAc) as an interface between emotional and motor structures may play a key role in the control of goal-directed actions by rewards. The NAc might be involved in processes guiding behavior according to predictive information on future reward magnitude, NAc activation is correlated with individual differences in self-reported happiness elicited by reward cues. These finding suggest that the NAc may code for expected incentive magnitude.

I find this interesting especially when compared to the concept of hyperbolic discounting in behavioral economics.

From the wiki on hyperbolic discounting:

Given two similar rewards, humans show a preference for one that arrives sooner rather than later. Humans are said to discount the value of the later reward, by a factor that increases with the length of the delay. This process is traditionally modeled in the form of exponential discounting, a time-consistent model of discounting.

Yudkowski new book

I have tended to read anything he puts out since I discovered the OB/LW community back when Stumbleupon was awesome… I think everybody should have some autodidacts in their reading list and Yudkowski is an established good choice imo, and very prolific. I still highly recommend his sequences, which cover many topics such as futurism, ai ethics, bayes, rationality and argument, and game theory. 

This new release though is very interesting! 

 https://equilibriabook.com/an-equilibrium-of-no-free-energy/