Newsletter 900

Hic sunt camelopardus: this historical edition of The Browser is presented for archaeological purposes; links and formatting may be broken.

The Placebo Phenomenon

Cara Feinberg | Harvard Magazine | 10 January 2013

Profile of Ted Kaptchuk, researcher into placebos and their effects. His findings: People respond positively to placebos even when they know that the placebos are placebos; and, the effect is dose-dependent. More medicine makes you feel better even when it's fake medicine

Has The Ideas Machine Broken Down?

Anonymous | Economist | 11 January 2013

This modern age is great at producing incrementally jazzier gadgets. But we've lost the vision, the appetite for fundamental technological progress. Revolutions in transport, health science, even kitchen gadgetry all took place before 1970. Since then we've done the internet and that's all

Jesus In Japan

Franz Lidz | Smithsonian | 10 January 2013

According to the residents of Shingo, in northern Japan, Jesus Christ settled there in AD37, fathered three children, died at 106. He escaped crucifixion in Judea by swapping places with his brother and returning to Japan, where he previously lived. He is buried nearby, close to Adam and Eve

Moody Economics, And Gerard Depardieu

Anne Applebaum | Slate | 10 January 2013

We talk as if economics were a science, like chemistry. But policy options and outcomes depend on national psychology; animal spirits. French tax policy turns just now on the actions of an attention-seeking actor. What factors shape economics elsewhere — in Latvia, or Greece, for example?

Here Is What Happens When You Cast Lindsay Lohan in Your Movie

Stephen Rodrick | New York Times | 10 January 2013

Big, fun read. Paul Schrader directs $250,000 movie financed on Kickstarter. Lohan agrees to act for $100 a day. James Deen as male lead. Script by Bret Easton Ellis. Shooting at Chateau Marmont. The result: Like the train crash in "Super 8", only messier. Somebody should option this story

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