Summary of “Things That May Help When It Comes to Making Peak-State Decisions and Investing in Yourself”

Actually, having peak experiences, or putting yourself into a peak state, should be something you do on a daily basis.
If you’re in a state of growth, you’ll need to position your life to have peak moments more frequently.
Even more - you need to set your trajectory from a peak state.
You want to be in a peak state while you make that decision.
The core purpose for having a morning routine is to put yourself into a peak state in the morning - so you can then operate from that state for the rest of your day.
Rather than being reactive, addicted, and unconscious in your morning - it’s far better to proactively put yourself in a peak state in a ritualistic manner.
You need to develop a routine of regularly getting yourself into a peak state.
You didn’t care enough to create a peak state, and then operate from that state on a daily basis.

The orginal article.

Summary of “The Secret Files of the Master of Modern Republican Gerrymandering”

Hofeller’s files include dozens of intensely detailed studies of North Carolina college students, broken down by race and cross-referenced against the state driver’s-license files to determine whether these students likely possessed the proper I.D. to vote.
The files mostly pertain to Hofeller’s work in North Carolina, where he drew-and defended in court-the state’s legislative and congressional maps multiple times, after judges ruled them to be either unconstitutionally partisan or racial gerrymanders.
Hofeller’s files show that he created giant databases that detailed the racial makeup, voting patterns, and residence halls of more than a thousand North Carolina A&T students.
As Hofeller sought to create two reliably Republican congressional districts, his computer contained information on the precise voting tendencies of one of the largest concentrations of black voters in the area.
Two files on Hofeller’s computer -“NC Juducial [sic] 2017 – stats” and “NC Judicial 2017 – Map”-break down the state’s eleven judiciary districts with race data.
In February, 2014, Hofeller wrote to a Republican attorney about an effort to match North Carolina’s master voter-registration file against the driver’s-license base to see which voters might be affected by the I.D. law.
“After the addresses are standardized and geo-coded for all three files, the next step will be a determination of the distance from each voter address to both the nearest DMV office and nearest in-county early voter center,” Hofeller wrote, on February 4, 2014, according to the letter from his files.
Hofeller invoiced the Republican attorney and others, including national Republican organizations, for tens of thousands of dollars between 2011 and 2017.

The orginal article.

Summary of “Alaska Permanent Fund Dividend: Alaska’s universal basic income problem”

When one considers the political ramifications of the largest and longest-running UBI experiment in America – Alaska’s Permanent Fund Dividend – giving out cash appears to create unforeseen problems, and advocates for basic income would do well to incorporate Alaska’s latest experience into their conceptions of the policy.
Since 1982, Alaska has been giving every woman, man, and child an annual chunk of its nest egg: the $66.3 billion Permanent Fund.
Alaska deposits at least 25 percent of mineral royalties – revenue the state generates from its mines, oil, and gas reserves – into the fund annually.
The money is in turn invested by the Alaska Permanent Fund Corporation in domestic and global stock, bonds, private equity, and more, and interest earnings are then distributed to Alaska residents every September.
Former Gov. Jay Hammond, the mastermind behind the fund, created the dividend system as a way to ensure Alaska’s nonrenewable resources could provide an everlasting return to the state.
Still, the state will see no funding for public broadcasting, a 31 percent cut to its critical ferry system, $130 million from Medicaid, and $70 million from the University of Alaska system.
The complicated politics of the Alaska Permanent Fund To supporters of a UBI, the Alaska PFD offers a tantalizing glimpse of what a universal basic income can do.
Alaska is one of the closest test cases we have for UBI, and interested parties should note the political and social costs that Alaska’s PFD is accruing.

The orginal article.

Summary of “How Kentucky Gambled for Hundreds of Millions of Dollars From a Broadband Program It Didn’t Qualify for”

Over the next couple of months, Frank Lassiter’s firm reassured state officials that federal support was winnable, coaching them on how to reapply with the FCC to win the millions they needed to make the Macquarie payments.
Eager to launch KentuckyWired in the waning days of the Beshear administration, state officials disregarded warnings that they might not qualify for the FCC money and instead attempted to work around federal procurement rules, according to a review of thousands of pages of documents and dozens of interviews.
In the project, Beshear, a Democrat, saw his legacy: economic revival for a poor state, spurred by new access to broadband.
In Kentucky, AT&T provided internet service across state government, receiving $11 million a year from the program.
Frank Lassiter had been corresponding regularly with state technology officials about the program for months, according to emails the newspaper obtained.
A new state authority would be created to oversee KentuckyWired, so that when the state asked for new bids for school internet service, this ostensibly independent entity – the Kentucky Communications Network Authority – rather than Macquarie would be making a case to replace AT&T. Friends in High Places.
The former HealthTech consultant, who had helped Macquarie and the state devise its E-rate strategy months earlier, had changed roles again and was now working for the agency administering the program, advising states on how to navigate its requirements.
According to Kentucky law, if the commission finds a violation of the code, including conflicts of interest when awarding state contracts, the state’s finance secretary may void any agreement related to that case.

The orginal article.

Summary of “What Time Feels Like When You’re Improvising”

Don’t look at the clock! Now tell me: How much time has passed since you first logged on to your computer today? Time may be a property of physics, but it is also a property of the mind, which ultimately makes it a product of the brain.
Time measures out and shapes our lives, and how we live our lives in turn affects how we perceive the passage of time.
Your sense of time is malleable and subjective-it changes in response to changing contexts and input, and it can be distorted when the brain is damaged, or affected by drugs, disease, sleep deprivation, or naturally altered states of consciousness.
A new set of neuroscience research findings suggests that losing track of time is also intimately bound up with creativity, beauty, and rapture.
When our minds are under-stimulated, time often feels like it is moving in slow motion, as in the scene in The Simpsons where Bart is made to lick envelopes for Principal Skinner all afternoon and groans when the clock starts ticking backward.
Not surprisingly, the frontal regions of the brain that have been shown to be involved in time perception and impulse control are also involved in spontaneous creativity.
The sense of time passing, producing its changes and progressions, is a capacity our brains evolved for adaptive reasons.
How long have I been sleeping? How soon do the kids need to eat? How fast will I have to walk to make it home before dark? Keeping track of time is something we do instinctively, and our instincts have recently been supplemented by cultural inventions such as clocks and calendars, which train our brains to map its instincts onto scales and increments.

The orginal article.

Summary of “How Black Holes Nearly Ruined Time”

Fittingly, the Black Hole Initiative was founded 100 years after Karl Schwarzschild solved Einstein’s equations for general relativity-a solution that described a black hole decades before the first astronomical evidence that they exist.
Now, what does this all have to do with black holes? Classical black holes-the kind that would exist in a world without quantum physics-have no entropy.
Physicist Jacob Bekenstein once said that these classical black holes “Have no hair,” a cute phrase meaning that a classical black hole only has a few measurable properties: mass, angular momentum, and electric charge.
This is a big problem for the second law of thermodynamics! If black holes truly had no entropy, then any time an object fell into a black hole, its entropy would effectively be deleted, reducing the entropy of the universe and violating the second law of thermodynamics.
Because the energy of a black hole increases when the surface area of its event horizon increases, it turns out that the entropy of a black hole is proportional to its surface area, a fact originally conjectured by Bekenstein.
The punchline is that black holes do have entropy, exactly as we had hoped, and we can tell exactly how much they have just by looking at how big they are.
Once we know that black holes have entropy, we have a new form of the second law of thermodynamics that includes not only the universe outside the black hole, but also the universe within the event horizon: The total entropy, Stotal = Soutside + SBH, must never decrease.
Whenever something is thrown into the black hole, the entropy Soutside of the universe outside the black hole decreases, but amazingly the surface area of the black hole, and therefore SBH, increases enough to ensure that Stotal does not get smaller.

The orginal article.

Summary of “Plasma and More Types of Matter”

Before scientists discovered the new state of matter last week, we were basically all used to just three states of matter.
In 1856, the legendary British scientist Michael Faraday was studying thin sheets of gold leaf.
Studying the properties of light and matter, Faraday was determined to make gold thin enough that it would be transparent to light.
While washing the gold in these chemicals, Faraday noticed that the action produced a faint ruby colored fluid.
Quantum mechanics, quantum physics, and quantum computing study a wide variety of things, but they’re all focused on what isn’t noticeable to the naked eye.
Faraday’s light-scattering gold particles were in a quantum state-the smallest they could possibly exist.
Through quantum studies, space exploration, and several other fields, there have been several discoveries of new types of matter, such as the five that follow.
They’ve all shown that existence is more than three states.

The orginal article.

Summary of “Insurance Companies Are Paying Cops To Investigate Their Own Customers”

Erie Insurance, one of the nation’s largest auto insurers, had not only provided the cops with evidence against its own loyal customer – it had actively worked with them to try to convict him of insurance fraud.
Insurance companies provide financial incentives to scores of police departments, prosecutors, and other public agencies to encourage them to focus on insurance fraud, a crime that has traditionally not been a priority for local law enforcement.
These efforts to fight phony claims have netted insurers at least a sevenfold return on investment since the ’90s, according to the Coalition Against Insurance Fraud, a nonprofit that receives most of its funding from insurance companies.
Insurance company officials make up the majority of the authority’s board, which last year doled out $14 million in targeted grants to fund the work of roughly 100 prosecutors, investigators, and support staffers across the state dedicated exclusively to rooting out insurance fraud.
Those law enforcement officials collected $5.6 million in restitution from people accused of insurance fraud in 2018, money that went back to the insurance companies.
His salary of $93,549, as well as those of the police officers assigned to work on insurance fraud, was entirely covered by grants from the Pennsylvania Insurance Fraud Prevention Authority.
Three years later, the Coalition Against Insurance Fraud, a group composed of insurance companies, consumer groups, and other stakeholders, helped craft model legislation that guaranteed companies broad immunity from any customer who wished to sue for being wrongly accused of fraud.
NICB agents help vet thousands of suspected fraud reports shared by insurance companies, embed in task forces with the FBI, and help craft threatening letters to customers suspected of fraud on behalf of state insurance regulators.

The orginal article.

Summary of “Maine families face elder boom, worker shortage in preview of nation’s future”

DOVER-FOXCROFT, Maine – Janet Flaherty got an alarming call last October from the agency tasked with coordinating in-home care for her 82-year-old mother.
With private help now bid up to $50 an hour, Janet and her two sisters have been forced to do what millions of families in a rapidly aging America have done: take up second, unpaid jobs caring full time for their mother.
“We have added an entire generation since we first put the safety net in place but with no plan whatsoever for how to support them,” said Ai-jen Poo, co-director of Caring Across Generations, which advocates for long-term care.
Experts say the nation will have to refashion its workforce, overhaul its old-age programs and learn how to care for tens of millions of elderly people without ruining their families’ financial lives.
The nursing home near her has no open beds, so she drives an hour every day to care for her ailing father after spending months caring for her mother.
Care workers in Maine were paid about $11.37 an hour in 2017, according to an AARP report, with a 2019 minimum wage of $11 an hour.
Betsy Sawyer-Manter, president of the SeniorsPlus agency responsible for placing care workers with Medicaid enrollees, said she was not surprised by Flaherty’s story of failing to find a worker for her mother, despite qualifying for care.
The United States is projected to have 7.8 million job openings for care workers by the middle of the next decade, making it among the fastest-growing professions in the country, with millions of new openings created by higher demand; millions of care workers retiring; and millions more finding new professions, according to the Paraprofessional Healthcare Institute, an advocacy organization.

The orginal article.

Summary of “Study: many of the “oldest” people in the world may not be as old as we think”

How do some people make it to 100 or even 110 years old? Why do some regions – say, Sardinia, Italy, or Okinawa, Japan -produce dozens of these “Supercentenarians” while other regions produce none? Is it genetics? Diet? Environmental factors? Long walks at dawn?
Newman looks at the introduction of birth certificates in various states and finds that “The state-specific introduction of birth certificates is associated with a 69-82% fall in the number of supercentenarian records.”
In other words, as soon as a state starts keeping good records of when people are born, there’s a 69 to 82 percent fall in the number of people who live to the age of 110.
It does mean that the majority of people claiming to be supercentenarians, born in areas that didn’t keep reliable, accurate birth records, are probably not quite as old as they say they are.
In other words, all of our research into the biomarkers, habits, and diets that predict extreme old age? Probably worthless, because a significant share of the sample was not actually as old as we thought.
Only about one in 1,000 people who live to the age of 100 make it to 110.
The vast majority of people would never impersonate their parent or older sibling for benefits, or forge a birth certificate, or participate in identity theft, or get confused about how old they even are.
If one in 1,000 people would do that, then fraudulent supercentenarians will be more common than bona fide supercentenarians.

The orginal article.