Journey in Life: 11/13/20

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Friday, November 13, 2020

Xin đừng hoài nghi

Covid-19 dường như không hoàn toàn bắt nguồn từ Vũ Hán vào cuối năm 2019, mà có thể là từ Vân Nam năm 2012, từ một hang dơi ẩm ướt. Ba người thợ mỏ đã chết vào dịp đó. Từ 2012 đến 2019 thì chủng virus này đã tiến hoá nhiều lắm rồi...
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The coronavirus may not have originated at a Wuhan wet market last year but 1,000 miles away in 2012 — deep in a Chinese mineshaft where workers came down with a mysterious, pneumonia-like illness after being exposed to bats.

Virologist Jonathan Latham and molecular biologist Allison Wilson, both of the non-profit Bioscience Resource Project in Ithaca, arrived at their finding after translating a 66-page master’s thesis from the Chinese medical doctor who treated the miners and sent their tissue samples to the Wuhan Institute of Virology for testing.


Bài trước: Ngại chết

Trả lại thiên nhiên

các biện pháp giảm thiểu lây lan đại dịch covid-19 dấn tới hàng tháng trời giảm nhiễu động địa chấn tới 50%...
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Human activity causes vibrations that propagate into the ground as high-frequency seismic (địa chấn) waves. Measures to mitigate the COVID-19 pandemic caused widespread changes in human activity, leading to a months-long reduction in seismic noise of up to 50%. The 2020 seismic noise quiet period is the longest and most prominent global anthropogenic (môn nguồn gốc loài người) seismic noise reduction on record. While the reduction is strongest at surface seismometers in populated areas, this seismic quiescence extends for many kilometers radially and hundreds of meters in depth. This provides an opportunity to detect subtle signals from subsurface seismic sources that would have been concealed in noisier times and to benchmark sources of anthropogenic noise. A strong correlation (mối tương quan) between seismic noise and independent measurements of human mobility suggests that seismology provides an absolute, real-time estimate of population dynamics.

Covid-19 – Chiếc đinh cuối cùng đóng vào cỗ quan tài chủ nghĩa cá nhân?

vài thập kỷ gần đây, chủ nghĩa cá nhân và tính ưu việt của cá nhân đã bị đe dọa nghiêm trọng.

- khủng bố kết hợp với sụp đổ kinh tế -> từ bỏ nhiều quyền tự do và quyền riêng tư để đổi lấy an toàn công cộng,

- nền tảng xã hội rộng lớn của các gã khổng lồ internet -> chủ nghĩa tư bản giám sát,

- thế giới đã trở nên phụ thuộc lẫn nhau hơn,

đại dịch Covid-19 có thể là chiếc đinh cuối cùng đóng vào cỗ quan tài của chủ nghĩa cá nhân, chúng ta nhanh chóng từ bỏ các quyền cá nhân và chịu sự kiểm soát của nhà nước hoặc các quyết định của các nhóm xã hội như khu chung cư, làng và thành phố, 

-> phải cẩn trọng chống lại việc mất các khía cạnh tích cực của chủ nghĩa cá nhân, phải đảm bảo rằng danh tính cá nhân không bị chi phối bởi một nhóm xã hội mà không tuân theo quy định của luật...
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There are three key reasons for this. The first is terrorism (chủ nghĩa khủng bố) combined with economic collapse. When 9/11 happened, it changed things overnight, giving the biggest shock treatment to individual agency. People in the US, the absolute stronghold (thành trì tuyệt đối) of individualism and libertarianism (chủ nghĩa tự do), had to give up many cherished freedoms and privacies in exchange for the promise of public safety. Then came the financial meltdown of 2008. In its wake, we entered a post-globalisation world, which coincided with the rise of authoritarian regimes that consolidated state power.

In many countries romantic patriotism (chủ nghĩa yêu nước lãng mạn), where an individual’s love for the country could be expressed as honest criticism, shifted to a harder nationalism of ‘my country, right or wrong’. Dissent was discouraged, and this nudged the independent individual further off the political stage.

The second reason is the rise of the internet giants (gã khổng lồ) with their massive social platforms (nền tảng xã hội). At first, these appeared to bulwark (bức tường thành, lực lượng bảo vệ) the primacy of the free individual. The anytime, anywhere, anything consumer was king. The labourer employee was now a self-employed entrepreneur; and the citizen was now a netizen, expressing his opinion around the world.

Unfortunately, individual choice turned out to be an illusion (ảo ảnh); a shimmering (lung linh, thấp thoáng) mirage. This was the beginning of what is now feared as surveillance (giám sát) capitalism, where the gig worker remains underpaid and overworked; the consumer is but a packet of data, and his free will can be bent by artificial intelligence. These same technologies also further enabled the surveillance state, shrinking the individual’s rights and privacies at an alarming pace. Even an individual’s vote, his most precious gift in an electoral democracy, has become an object of manipulation (thao túng).

Third, the world has become even more interdependent.

Ngại chết

đi lại bằng thang máy trong thời kỳ dịch bệnh covid-19...
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When the American Medical Association moved its headquarters to a famous Chicago skyscraper (tòa nhà chọc trời) in 2013, the floor-to-ceiling views from the 47th-floor conference space (không gian hội thảo) were a spectacular (ngoạn mục) selling point (điểm bán).

But now, those glimpses (cái nhìn thoáng qua, ý niệm lờ mờ) of the Chicago River at the Ludwig Mies van der Rohe-designed landmark, now known as AMA Plaza, come with a trade-off: navigating the elevator in the time of COVID-19.

Once the epitome (hình ảnh thu nhỏ, ví dụ hoàn hảo) of efficiency for moving masses of people quickly to where they needed to go, the elevator is the antithesis (phép đối chọi, phản đề, tương phản) of social distancing (giãn cách xã hội) and a risk-multiplying bottleneck (điểm nghẽn). As America begins to open up, the newest conundrum (câu đố, câu hỏi hóc búa) for employers in cities is how to safely transport people in elevators and manage the crowd of people waiting for them.

If office tower workers want to stay safe, elevator experts think they have advice, some practical, some not: Stay in your corner (đứng trong góc), face the walls (quay mặt vào tường) and carry toothpicks (for pushing the buttons; dùng bàn chải đánh răng bấm thang máy). Not only have those experts gone back to studying mathematical models for moving people, but they are also creating technology like ultraviolet-light disinfection (tẩy uế) tools and voice-activated panels.

Bài trước: Cố làm gì

Ghê quá

ghê với khái niệm/ý nghĩ muốn có gì cũng free, ko phải bỏ sức cơ...
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trích dẫn hôm nay… is from page 33 of Deirdre McCloskey’s and Art Carden’s new (2020) book, Leave Me Alone and I’ll Make You Rich: How the Bourgeois Deal Enriched the World (original emphasis; footnote deleted; link added):

Giving people what they want, and are in justice willing to pay for when they can, is a good system. “Economics,” writes Jeffrey Tucker, “is not just about making money. It’s also about a chance to be valuable to others, to yourself.” By contrast, giving people what the critics of “capitalism” think they should want, or that people do want but want to get magically (kỳ diệu, thần diệu) free of sacrifice of their own efforts (ko phải hy sinh, nỗ lực) for other people, burdening another person for their own gain, is a hideously (gớm ghiếc, đáng tởm) selfish (ích kỷ) society.

DBx: Yes. A trillion-and-two times yes.

All schemes of protectionism (bảo hộ) enable some people to leech (con đỉa; bóc lột, hút máu) off of their fellow citizens. Protectionism, in order to artificially (giả tạo, nhân tạo) enrich the few, denies to the many the right to spend their incomes as they choose. By artificially narrowing buyers’ options, protectionism relieves the protected of the obligation to make themselves as useful as possible to others.

This reality is true for run-of-the-(steel)-mill protectionism as well as for more ‘comprehensive’ versions hawked as “industrial policy.”

Đừng để tiền rơi

tiền dưới đất thì chẳng màng/ko cúi xuống nhặt,

nhưng tiền rơi khỏi túi thì cúi xuống nhặt ngay,

vì một đằng là chỉ thêm chút tiền (chẳng đáng bao nhiêu), một đằng ko để mất thêm/ngăn chặn tổn thất (quan trọng và quý hơn nhiều),
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Dear Dan,

Why will many people not stop on the street to pick up a dime but would certainly stop to pick up a dime if it fell out of their pocket? Isn't the value of 10 cents the same in both cases?
—Baruch

These might seem like the same case, but they aren't. When we pick up 10 cents, we add to our wealth (just a bit), but when we reclaim a dime that we dropped, we prevent a loss—and preventing a loss is much more important and valuable.

Gợi ý cách tặng quà cảm ơn cho diễn giả và khách VIP

tạo cuộc đấu giá với nhiều món đồ lưu niệm, khi diễn giả trả giá (và thắng) món đồ nào, thì... tặng họ món quà đó (free)...
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Dear Dan,

—Wilma

Not long ago, I gave some lectures (bài giảng, diễn thuyết) to a very nice group of people. At the end of the retreat (rút lui, rút quân; nơi ẩn dật, nơi tu đạo), they held an auction (đấu giá) of all kinds of souvenirs (đồ lưu niệm), and I bid on a homemade blanket that I particularly liked. Later that night, I discovered, they took the blanket out of the auction after I bid on it and gave it to me as a gift (quà tặng).

This was particularly nice for three reasons. First, I clearly liked the blanket because I bid on it. Second, I assumed that other people also wanted it. And finally, it didn't have a real market value. All this made it a wonderful, highly appreciated gift without a specific price tag.

If you're willing to be a bit manipulative, you could take this approach a step further: What if you held a live auction, and when you saw something that the guest speaker was interested in, you got other people to dramatically outbid him or her (offering, say, 10 times more than the speaker would)—and, at the end of the night, gave the item in question to the speaker? This process would make clear that your guest coveted the item, as did other people, and that its value was very high. Clearly an ideal gift.

Quá dễ

ăn các loại hạt sẽ cải thiện chất lượng tinh trùng...
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For men, a healthy lifestyle isn’t just good for their wellbeing but can also impact their ability to have children. Proper diet can affect the quality of a man’s sperm (tinh trùng), for better or worse. Researchers in Spain say adding nuts to the mix can play a key role in keeping men fertile (khả năng sinh sản, tốt giống).

A team from the Universitat Rovira i Virgili says consuming a mixture of tree nuts — like almonds (quả hạnh), hazelnuts, and walnuts — can have a profound affect on sperm DNA methylation. This process refers to the natural changes your DNA goes through which don’t actually alter human DNA sequences.

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