In the News 03.01.16 : Today’s Articles of Interest from Around the Internets
Thursday 5th January, 2017
Kanye West’s Year of Breaking Bad
Back at the beginning of 2016, Kanye West was already sounding alarms.
On Dec. 31, 2015, he released “Facts,” an out-of-nowhere harangue that insulted Nike, praised his wife’s business acumen and seemed to express sympathy for Bill Cosby. About a week later came “Real Friends,” as potent and dispiriting a catalog of loneliness he has ever recorded, a song about how fame warps and traps, and no matter how high it brings you, will always yank you down.
These songs set the stage for one of the most productive, disjointed and confusing years in the life of Kanye. It was one that began with him seeking grace, in the form of music, and also ended that way, but for very different reasons, following his hospitalization and his meeting with the president-elect, Donald J. Trump. And yet the Kanye of 12 months ago and the Kanye of today aren’t so far apart: instability, loneliness, a sense that he was being treated unfairly, a continuing quest to be heard. Mr. West may be facing severe public scrutiny, skepticism and concern, but even during this most challenging stretch, there are clear bridges to his old self.
Read the rest of this article at The New York Times
Nomads No More: Why Mongolian Herders Are Moving To The City
In Altansukh Purev’s yurt, the trappings of a herder’s life lie in plain sight. In the corner are his saddle and bridle. By the door, he has left a milk pail. If you didn’t know better, you might think his horses and cattle were still grazing outside on the remote plains of outer Mongolia.
But they aren’t. Altansukh’s milk pail stands empty. There is no horse for him to saddle. His cattle are dead. And this tent, which once stood in the countryside, is now on the fringes of the Mongolian capital, Ulaanbaatar, surrounded by pylons, rubble and the husks of old cars. Altansukh, his wife and their four children may live among rural paraphernalia, but following a disastrously cold winter a few years ago, they were forced to move to the city to survive.
Read the rest of this article at The Guardian
Author James Altucher Wants You to Stop Reading the News and Ditch College
Writer and podcaster James Altucher doesn’t want people to call him an “advice guru” — but he does give advice, for a living, based on his failures and successes as an entrepreneur.
On the latest episode of Recode Media with Peter Kafka, Altucher warned that “society hypnotizes you” into making decisions that are against your best interests. He learned this lesson the hard way: After selling his first company for $15 million, Altucher gambled all that money away on bad investments during the dot-com bubble.
He said this hypnosis extends to more common financial circumstances, too. People will automatically “spend millions on a house, or $200,000 each on a college education for their five kids,” he said, even though there are alternatives to both of those decisions.
Last year, Altucher gave up his apartments in New York and has been couch-surfing and Airbnb-ing when he’s not traveling. And although he went to college (he holds a B.A. from Cornell University and brags that he was thrown out of grad school at Carnegie Mellon), he said today’s prospective students should instead consider getting their education online.
Read the rest of this article at Recode
The False Promise of Wellness Culture
On a 1979 edition of 60 Minutes, Dan Rather declared: “Wellness. There’s a word you don’t hear every day. It means exactly what you might think it means: the opposite of illness…. It’s a movement that is catching on all over the country.” Later in the segment, Rather spoke to Dr. John W. Travis, founder of the Wellness Resource Center in Marin County, north of San Francisco. “Just because you aren’t sick,” Travis told Rather, “you don’t have any symptoms, and you could go get a checkup and get a clean bill of health, that doesn’t mean that you’re well.”
Once associated with the utopian New Age subcultures of places like Marin County and Santa Fe, wellness has gone mainstream. The landscape is crowded with the business of it: juice bars, meditation retreats, detox diets, mindfulness apps, and retailers of downward-dog-friendly Lycra. Gwyneth Paltrow’s lifestyle blog Goop, the movement’s standard-bearer, was joined last month by Arianna Huffington’s Thrive Global, a new wellness platform “addressing a deep need of our modern societies.” At schools, hospitals, and even prisons, proponents cite the self-empowering potential of wellness policies, pointing to soaring morale and stress reduction. Wellness programs now span companies and industries across America, promoting health and “self-management strategies” while promising to boost productivity and curb health care costs. There are now wellness consultants, for those who can pay for the privilege of self-improvement, wellness vacations aboard holistic cruises, and even purveyors of wellness for cats and dogs.
Read the rest of this article at Jstor Daily
A Selection of The 30 Most Disappointing Under 30
Will Heller, twenty-six
After a month at a Zen silent-meditation retreat, Heller went back to his job at Goldman Sachs as a commodities trader in oil and gas.
Victor Chen, twenty-eight
Chen used an app to hire a person to pick up and deliver a Chipotle burrito to him every night for twenty-two consecutive nights.
Joanna Feldman, twenty-two
Misquoted E. E. Cummings in her rib-cage tattoo.
Rebecca Meyer, twenty-nine
Since earning her M.F.A. in fiction from Columbia, Meyer has been at work writing her début novel in her sprawling Chinatown loft, which was paid for in full by her parents. She has written sixteen pages, and they’re not very good.
Haley DiStefano, twenty-seven
DiStefano is known for posting pictures of her eight-thousand-dollar Cartier bracelets on Instagram, accompanied by the hashtag “#ManicureMonday.”
David Saperstein, twenty-six
Shared an article about fatalities in Syria accompanied by the comment “So many feels.”
Read the rest of this article at The New Yorker