Despite many efforts on a personal level to maintain “green” lifestyles, fossil fuels are ingrained in the global energy system; psychiatry is undergoing revolutionary changes since the National Institute of Mental Health denounced the field’s canonical manual of mental disorders; and, newsflash, President Obama’s re-election has not changed his ways, as evidenced by his recent Cabinet choices. These discoveries and more below.

On a regular basis, Truthdig brings you the news items and odds and ends that have found their way to Larry Gross, director of the USC Annenberg School for Communication. A specialist in media and culture, art and communication, visual communication and media portrayals of minorities, Gross helped found the field of gay and lesbian studies.

Why Your ‘Green Lifestyle’ Choices Don’t Really Matter Fossil fuels don’t care which brand of paper towel you use.

Oz and Us At Wannabe U, a research university that I have been observing for years, the provost and president have announced that it is time to create a new academic plan.

Penny Pritzker’s Commerce (Part One) For those who’ve been waiting for Barack Obama, unfettered from the constraints of re-election, to emerge from his chrysalis and take wing as the true liberal they have always known he was, well, here we are: a proposal to cut Social Security benefits via a cost-of-living adjustments (candidate Obama in 2008 said John McCain suggests “the best answer for the growing pressures on Social Security might be cost-of-living adjustments or raise the retirement age. Let me be clear: I will not do either.”)

The Potential Perils of Rapid-Fire Urbanization Former mayor of Barcelona Joan Clos has an easy manner and tousled white hair, like an amiable uncle.

The Uncertain Future of Public Roads A few weeks ago, the Colorado Department of Transportation reached a 50-year deal with a private investment group to handle the improvement, maintenance, and operation of US 36 between Denver and Boulder.

Cleaning Up the Airwaves Over the last four years, the FCC has failed in its mission to enforce net neutrality or promote diversity in media ownership.

1,856 to Zero: Secret Spy Court Authorizes 100% of US Government Requests A secret federal court last year did not deny a single request to search or electronically spy on people within the United States “for foreign intelligence purposes,” according to a Justice Department report this week.

You Don’t Need Good Mathematics to be a Scientist You don’t have to be good at mathematics, a high IQ may be a hindrance, and seek goals where others don’t to make for easy wins.

Psychiatry Divided as Mental Health ‘Bible’ Denounced The world’s biggest mental health research institute is abandoning the new version of psychiatry’s “bible” – the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, questioning its validity and stating that “patients with mental disorders deserve better”.

A Drone’s-Eye View of Nature An electric whir filled the air of this high desert valley as Jeff Sloan, a cartographer for the United States Geological Survey, hurled a small remote-controlled airplane into the sky.


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