January is always a good month for behavioral economics: Few things illustrate self-control as vividly as New Year's resolutions. February is even better, though, because it lets us study why so many of those resolutions are broken.
Decades ago, women suffered through horrifying back-alley abortions. Or, they used dangerous methods when they had no other recourse. So when the Republican Party launched an all-out assault on women's health, pushing bills to limit access to vital services, we had to ask: Why is the GOP trying to send women back... to the back alley?
[Mrs. Allen was] never satisfied with the day unless she spent the chief of it by the side of Mrs. Thorpe, in what they called conversation, but in which there was scarcely ever any exchange of opinion, and not often any resemblance of subject, for Mrs. Thorpe talked chiefly of her children, and Mrs. Allen of her gowns.
Who did she know in Raleigh who took the time off to fix a house? Or read Whitman or Eliot, finding images in the mind, thoughts of the spirit? Or hunted dawn from the bow of a canoe? These weren't the things that drove society, but she felt they shouldn't be treated as unimportant. They made living worthwhile.
The intangible, as you can guess, creates some decidedly strange and perceived dichotomies for scientific interpretations. Ask a scientist what the definition of electricity is and he might rattle off, It is the physical phenomena arising from the reaction of electrons and protons Note the word phenomena in the above statement - it is the key word. It is used as a reference in the philosophical usage rather than as a scientific justification.