Dallas Morning News Neurologist Oliver Sacks' new book examines 'Hallucinations,' including his own
The well-worn lair of the world’s most literary neurologist bespeaks a restless spirit that all but says, “Yeah, I’ve been at this awhile.” A vintage, multicolor Chart of Electromagnetic Radiation dominates one wall; it looks like something you’d find in a gargantuan pack of chewing gum. On a table sits a pencil sharpener that looks more like a microscope. “It’s not even terribly functional,” he chuckles during a visit earlier this year. “It’s sort of a pencil sharpener cubed.”
At 79, Sacks’ eyesight is fading, as he chronicled in his 2010 book The Mind’s Eye. But his curiosity and empathy, immortalized in the 1990 Robert De Niro-Robin Williams movie Awakenings, remains unquenched. His new book, Hallucinations (Knopf, $26.95), seeks to destigmatize the experiences of those who see what isn’t there. Much like his famous collection The Man Who Mistook His Wife for a Hat, Hallucinations mixes case studies of Sacks’ patients and acquaintances with scientific history and philosophy.
Via Mary Daniels Brown
Imagine a molecule that underlies the virtues that glue societies together. Imagine that it brought out the better angels of our nature with just a sniff and could “rebond our troubled world.” Imagine that it was the “source of love and prosperity” and explained “what makes us good and evil.”
Well, carry on imagining. This is a story about oxytocin, and oxytocin is not that molecule.
December 14, 2012: “The Farmers Assurance Provision” is the title of a rider, Section 733, inserted into the House of Representatives 2013 Agriculture Appropriations Bill. Somehow, as a farmer, I don't feel the least bit assured.
The only assurance it provides is that Monsanto and the rest of the agriculture biotech industry will have carte blanche to force the government to allow the planting of their biotech seeds.
In addition, the House Agriculture Committee’s 2012 farm bill draft includes three riders – Sections 1011, 10013 and 10014. These amendments would essentially destroy any oversight of new Genetically Engineered (GE) crops by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA).... http://www.commondreams.org/view/2012/12/14-1
On the heels of last week's strong report from pediatricians highlighting the harms pesticides can cause children's developing minds, a new study finds that pesticides are clearly harming adult brains, too. December 12, 2012