Wednesday, October 17, 2018

Alleviating Global Poverty: Labor Mobility, Direct Assistance, and Economic Growth

Alleviating Global Poverty: Labor Mobility, Direct Assistance, and Economic Growth. Lant Pritchett. Center for Global Development Working Paper 479, March 2018.

Abstract: Decades of  programmatic experimentation by development NGOs combined with the latest empirical techniques for estimating program impact have shown that a well-designed, well-implemented, multi-faceted intervention can in fact have an apparently sustained impact on the incomes of  the poor (Banerjee et al 2015). The magnitude of  the income gains of  the “best you can do” via direct interventions to raise the income of  the poor in situ is about 40 times smaller than the income gain from allowing people from those same poor countries to work in a high productivity country like the USA. Simply allowing more labor mobility holds vastly more promise for reducing poverty than anything else on the development agenda. That said, the magnitude of  the gains from large growth accelerations (and losses from large decelerations) are also many-fold larger than the potential gains from directed individual interventions and the poverty reduction gains from large, extended periods of  rapid growth are larger than from targeted interventions and also hold promise (and have delivered) for reducing global poverty.

Pursuing Sex with an Ex: Does It Hinder Breakup Recovery? It seems it doesn't.

Pursuing Sex with an Ex: Does It Hinder Breakup Recovery? Stephanie S. Spielmann, Samantha Joel, Emily A. Impett. Archives of Sexual Behavior,

Abstract: The present research used longitudinal methods to test whether pursuing sex with an ex-partner hinders breakup recovery. Participants completed a month-long daily diary immediately following a breakup, as well as a two-month follow-up (Study 1). Daily analyses revealed positive associations between trying to have sex with an ex-partner and emotional attachment to the ex-partner, but not other aspects of breakup recovery, such as distress, intrusive thoughts, or negative affect. Longitudinal changes from day to day, and over 2 months, revealed that pursuing sex with an ex was not a predictor of breakup recovery over time. To address the limitation that Study 1 only assessed attempted sexual pursuits, Study 2 explored associations between pursuit of, and actual engagement in, sexual activities with ex-partners. Results revealed that most sexual pursuits were successful, and success rates were not associated with breakup recovery. Findings challenge common beliefs about potential harm of pursuing sex with an ex.

Keywords: Breakups Ex-partners Sex Longitudinal methods

Party Animals: Asymmetric Ideological Constraint among Democratic and Republican Party Activists

Party Animals: Asymmetric Ideological Constraint among Democratic and Republican Party Activists. Robert N. Lupton, William M. Myers, Judd R. Thornton. Political Research Quarterly,

Abstract: Existing literature shows that Republicans in the mass public demonstrate greater ideological inconsistency and value conflict than Democrats. That is, despite a commitment to the conservative label and abstract belief in limited government, Republican identifiers’ substantive policy attitudes are nonetheless divided. Conversely, Democrats, despite registering lower levels of ideological thinking, maintain relatively consistent liberal issue attitudes. Based on theories of coalition formation and elite opinion leadership, we argue that these differences should extend to Democratic and Republican Party activists. Examining surveys of convention delegates from the years 2000 and 2004, we show that Democratic activists’ attitudes are more ideologically constrained than are those of Republican activists. The results support our hypothesis and highlight that some of the inconsistent attitudes evident among mass public party identifiers can be traced to the internal divisions of the major party coalitions themselves.

Keywords: elite attitude structures, ideological constraint, partisan asymmetry

Sensory Perception Is Not a One-Way Street. Tübingen Neuroscientists decipher the pathways by which the brain alters its own perception of the outside world

Cortical modulation of sensory flow during active touch in the rat whisker system. Shubhodeep Chakrabarti & Cornelius Schwarz. Nature Communicationsvolume 9, Article number: 3907 (2018).

Abstract: Sensory gating, where responses to stimuli during sensor motion are reduced in amplitude, is a hallmark of active sensing systems. In the rodent whisker system, sensory gating has been described only at the thalamic and cortical stages of sensory processing. However, does sensory gating originate at an even earlier synaptic level? Most importantly, is sensory gating under top-down or bottom-up control? To address these questions, we used an active touch task in behaving rodents while recording from the trigeminal sensory nuclei. First, we show that sensory gating occurs in the brainstem at the first synaptic level. Second, we demonstrate that sensory gating is pathway-specific, present in the lemniscal but not in the extralemniscal stream. Third, using cortical lesions resulting in the complete abolition of sensory gating, we demonstrate its cortical dependence. Fourth, we show accompanying decreases in whisking-related activity, which could be the putative gating signal.

Sensory Perception Is Not a One-Way Street

70% of participants found at least 1 aggressive or humiliating sexual play desirable; 50% found at least 3 acts desirable; men desired to engage more than women; aggressive & humiliating sexual play seems a normal variation in sexual desire

Aggressive and Humiliating Sexual Play: Occurrence Rates and Discordance Between the Sexes. Menelaos Apostolou, Michalis Khalil. Archives of Sexual Behavior,

Abstract: The present study attempted to understand people’s desires for aggressive and humiliating sexual play, both in terms of interests and fantasy. An evolutionary framework has been developed which generated five hypotheses to be tested. Evidence from a qualitative study of 102 participants identified 13 aggressive and sexual acts which were commonly preferred. A subsequent quantitative online study of 1026 men and women asked participants to rate the desirability of these acts. The results indicated that more than 70% of participants found at least one aggressive or humiliating sexual play desirable, whereas about half of the participants found at least three such acts desirable. Significant sex differences were also found, with men desiring to engage in such play more than women. This discordance was moderated by the willingness of each party to partially accommodate each other’s desires. On the basis of these findings and the proposed theoretical framework, it is concluded that aggressive and humiliating sexual play constitutes a normal variation in sexual desire.

Keywords: Aggressive sexual play Humiliating sexual play Masochism Sadism Sex difference

Why people engage in costly helping; empathy is one mechanism; moral outrage is a second one, a critical force for collective action

The Upside of Outrage. Victoria L. Spring, Daryl Cameron, Mina Cikar. Trends in Cognitive Sciences,

Abstract: A debate has emerged across disciplines about why people engage in costly helping. Empathy is one mechanism. We highlight a second, more controversial motivator: moral outrage. Integrating findings from moral psychology and intergroup literatures, we suggest outrage is a critical force for collective action and highlight directions for future research.