Friendship’s Dark Side: ‘We Need a Common Enemy’
As a rule, friendship is considered an unalloyed good, one of life’s happy-happies, like flowers and fresh fruit. “Report: It Would Probably Be Nice Having Friends,” read a recent headline in The Onion. Ha ha! Of course it’s “kind of fun” and “pretty cool” to “have a few select people in your life to do stuff with on a regular basis.”
Most people can name at least half a dozen people they view as reasonably good friends. The only society where people don’t have any friends, according to Daniel Hruschka, an evolutionary anthropologist at Arizona State University, is found in the science fiction of C.J. Cherryh’s “Foreigner” series.
Yet researchers who explore the deep nature of friendship admit the bond can have its thorns, bruise spots and pesticide traces.
Take the new evidence that people choose friends who resemble themselves, right down to the moment-to-moment pattern of blood flow in the brain. The tendency toward homophily, toward flocking together with birds of your inner and outer feather, gives rise to a harmonious sense of belonging and shared purpose, to easy laughter and volumes of subtext mutually, wordlessly, joyfully understood.
But homophily, researchers said, is also the basis of tribalism, xenophobia and racism, the urge to “otherize” those who differ from you and your beloved friends in one or more ways.
The impulse can yield absurd results. One recent study from the University of Michigan had subjects stand outside on a cold winter day and read a brief story about a hiker who was described as either a “left-wing, pro-gay-rights Democrat” or a “right-wing, anti-gay-rights Republican.”
“Why must it be the case that we love our own and hate the other?” Nicholas Christakis of Yale University said. “I have struggled with this, and read and studied a tremendous amount, and I have mostly dispiriting news. It’s awful. Xenophobia and in-group bias go hand-in-hand.”
Game theory models predict it, real-life examples confirm it. “In order to band together, we need a common enemy,” Dr. Christakis said.
Fortunately, he added, no model insists that the out-group must be exterminated or otherwise eliminated from the scene. “It’s possible to treat the out-group with mild dislike or even grudging respect,” he said. “Cultivating in-group distinctiveness does not require that the other must be killed.”
Nevertheless, even the ordinary business of making friends is an exclusionary act, a judgment call, and therefore threaded with the potential for pain.
“A friendship is always a little bit of a conspiracy,” said Alexander Nehamas, a professor of philosophy at Princeton. “We two are here, they are over there, and we’re going to do our thing whether they want us to or not.”
And if they try to join us, we can say, no, sorry, that seat is taken. We’re saving it for a friend.
Who may not return the favor. Abdullah Almaatouq of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and his colleagues recently showed that people are poor judges of who their friends are.
Other studies have shown similar discordances or worse, with one survey revealing that 66 percent of supposed friendships were cases of unrequited like.
The overall rates of friendship conflict did not differ between men and women, but women were more likely to clash with close friends, to express feelings of anguish over the breakup, and to be more demanding of evidence of remorse before reconciling.
Sure, love may mean never having to say you’re sorry. But friendship is a stricter taskmaster, and sorry may not be enough.
April 16, 2018
Sources: New York Times
or redistributed. ©2018 FOX News Network, LLC. All rights reserved. All market data delayed 20 minutes.</p><p> Scientists take samples from Ötzi's stomach during an exam in Bolzano, Italy, in November 2010. Credit: South Tyrol Museum of Archaeology\Eurac\M. Samadelli </p><p>A mere 2 hours before his grisly murder about 5,300 years ago, Ötzi the iceman chowed down on some mouthwatering morsels: wild meat from ibex and red deer, cereals from einkorn wheat and — oddly enough — poisonous fern, a new study finds.</p><p>"It looked like he consumed it [the bracken] quite regularly, which would make it more like a kind of drug he took against the parasites," Zink told Live Science.</p><p>However, the iceman's diet had remained somewhat elusive. Previous analyses looked only at Ötzi's large and small intestines, because, until a recent computed tomography (CT) scan, scientists had absolutely no idea where Ötzi's stomach was located.</p><p>The new scan revealed that the iceman's stomach had moved up during the mummification process. So, scientists got right to work, analyzing the stomach's contents so they could figure out what Ötzi gulped down before his demise.</p><p>"The high and cold environment is particularly challenging for the human physiology and requires optimal nutrient supply to avoid rapid starvation and energy loss," Zink said in a statement. "The iceman seemed to have been fully aware that fat represents an excellent energy source."</p><p>The team plans to study Ötzi's microbiome next. Given that the iceman didn't eat processed foods, "we'll try to reconstruct it as much as possible and compare it to [that of] modern people" to see how the bacteria that live within humans have changed over thousands of years, Zink said.</p><p>This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. ©2018 FOX News Network, LLC. All rights reserved. All market data delayed 20 minutes.</p>
“kid-sized” submarine after all.</p><p>The chief of the rescue mission had called the device “not practical” for the operation, which required squeezing through narrow passageways in the cave, but a Thai military official said the mini-submarine could be useful for future rescue missions.</p><p>Maj. Gen. Chalongchai Chaiyakham, the deputy commander to Thailand’s Third Army, said Wednesday that the mini-submarine would be appropriate for use in open water and that he had heard the technology would be given to the Thai Navy SEAL team.</p><p>In a tweet on Thursday, a translator based in Bangkok said engineers from SpaceX, Mr. Musk’s rocket company, trained members of the Thai Navy to use the mini-submarine.</p><p>Mr. Musk sent 10 engineers from SpaceX; Tesla, his electric car company; and the Boring Company, which specializes in tunneling and construction.</p><p>As the Thai government celebrated the success of the mission and considered how they could use Mr. Musk’s quickly assembled invention, the 12 boys and their soccer coach were recovering under quarantine in a hospital in Chiang Rai, Thailand. All were improving quickly, the country’s top public health official had said.</p>
or redistributed. ©2018 FOX News Network, LLC. All rights reserved. All market data delayed 20 minutes.</p><p> In this November 2010 photo provided by the South Tyrol Museum of Archaeology, researchers examine the body of a frozen hunter known as Oetzi the Iceman to sample his stomach contents in Bolzano, Italy. (Marco Samadelli/Eurac/South Tyrol Museum of Archaeology via AP) </p><p>Scientists studying the body of Oetzi the Iceman — a hunter who died in the Alps 5,300 years ago — found that his last meal was particularly well-balanced.</p><p>The leaves and spores may have been unintentionally swallowed or may have been used as medicine for parasites previously found in his gut, according to scientists.</p><p>"It was very impressive," Frank Maixner, the leader author and a microbiologist at the Institute for Mummy Studies in Bolzano, Italy, said. "We could see chunks and pieces of food with (the) naked eye."</p><p>Oetzi's remains were well-preserved from mummification when his body was found near the border between Italy and Austria in 1991.</p><p>In 2009, a radiologist had discovered the iceman's stomach -- which was full -- had moved upwards, behind his ribcage. Researchers defrosted his body, took samples of his stomach and rehydrated them.</p><p>Nearly half of his stomach was filled with body fat from an ibex, a wild goat that still lives in the Alps. While that's a lot of fat, Maixner said it made sense because "they had to be prepared" for the harsh terrain.</p><p>"They had to have food that gave them the necessary energy (to survive)," he said.</p><p>Albina Hulda Palsdottir, an archaeozoologist from the University of Oslo, believes the findings are very valuable.</p><p>"They're trying to use all the methods in the toolbox to answer this really important question of what people were really eating," she said.</p><p>Now, Maixner and his team are hoping to reconstruct the composition of bacteria and other microorganisms that lived in the Iceman's gut, and see how it differs from what modern people show.</p><p>"Oetzi is always interesting," Hulda Palsdottir said. "He's already told us so much."</p><p>This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. ©2018 FOX News Network, LLC. All rights reserved. All market data delayed 20 minutes.</p>
wl, a Morgan Library & Museum show celebrates the quirky traces left by the hands of notable historical figures.</p><p>Here is a sampling of items from the exhibition, and the sometimes quirky, sidelong glances they offer at their creators.</p><p>When it comes to graphology — the study of handwriting to reveal character — count Mr. Corrêa do Lago among the skeptics. “I’m not convinced that it’s a science,” he said. But the exhibition includes a charming relic of Antoine de Saint-Exupéry’s adventures in chirology, or palm reading. He made this impression of his hand in the presence of Dr. Charlotte Wolff, who detected “a rare gift of observation” and “love of animals.” The analysis and the print, which Saint-Exupéry signed, was published in a Surrealist journal, along with ones for André Breton, Aldous Huxley and Marcel Duchamp. “That he would sign an impression of his hand is perfect,” Mr. Corrêa do Lago said. </p><p>Neatly drawn letters trot across the page in this 1826 letter by the 7-year-old future Queen Victoria, sending birthday greetings to an uncle, the heir presumptive to the British throne. “When she was learning to write, she would copy models, which is why her writing looks so calligraphic,” Mr. Corrêa do Lago said. “But it didn’t stay at all like that.”</p><p>The show includes this photograph of a wild-haired Allan Ginsberg taken in the Australian desert in 1971, on which the poet inscribed “Summit Ayers Rock Self Portrait Arms Length.” At the summit, Ginsberg wrote a letter to his father, composed a poem and then turned the camera on himself, capturing the flies buzzing around his head. “I think of it as a proto-selfie,” Mr. Corrêa de Lago said. </p><p>Mr. Corrêa do Lago owns the only known manuscript of Jorge Luis Borges’s classic story “The Library of Babel,” written neatly on nine pages of notebook paper meant for financial record keeping. The story, about an infinite library, might be seen as finding an echo in Mr. Corrêa do Lago’s own project. He was 17 when he met Borges in Buenos Aires and interviewed him for a newspaper. By coincidence, the exhibition’s curator, Christine Nelson, met and interviewed Borges when she was 19. “When I found out Pedro owned the manuscript,” Ms. Nelson said, “I was overcome with emotion.” </p><p>Through Sept. 16 at the Morgan Library & Museum, 225 Madison Avenue, Manhattan; 212-685-0008, themorgan.org.</p>
or redistributed. ©2018 FOX News Network, LLC. All rights reserved. All market data delayed 20 minutes.</p><p> This artist’s illustration shows the potentially temperate planet Ross 128b, with its red dwarf parent star in the background. Credit: M. Kornmesser/ESO </p><p>Initial estimates also indicated that Ross 128b has a minimum mass just 1.35 times that of Earth and therefore stands a good chance of being rocky, just like our own planet.</p><p>The new study will not dampen that enthusiasm. The researchers analyzed Ross 128b's parent star, known as Ross 128, using the Sloan Digital Sky Survey's Apache Point Observatory Galactic Evolution Experiment (APOGEE), a spectroscopic instrument installed on a telescope in New Mexico.</p><p>The APOGEE data revealed the abundances of certain key elements in Ross 128, including carbon, oxygen, magnesium and iron. Because stars and their orbiting planets coalesce from the same massive cloud of raw materials, this information revealed some key characteristics about Ross 128b as well.</p><p>For example, the stellar abundances, combined with Ross 128b's known minimum mass, suggest that the planet's radius is less than 1.7 times that of Earth. That's the rough threshold beyond which worlds have a significant gassy envelope — meaning that Ross 128b is probably rocky.</p><p>In addition, the red dwarf's observed iron-to-magnesium ratio indicates that Ross 128b's core is larger than that of Earth, the researchers said.</p><p>The team also determined that temperatures at or near the "surface" of the star are around 5,400 degrees Fahrenheit (3,000 degrees Celsius). The researchers used this information, along with Ross 128b's radius and orbital distance, to figure out how much stellar energy the planet receives — and, therefore, how hot it's likely to be.</p><p>The result? Ross 128b probably has an "equilibrium temperature" of about 70 degrees Fahrenheit (21 degrees C). This shouldn't be taken as gospel, however; planets' temperatures depend greatly on the composition and thickness of their atmospheres, and the nature of Ross 128b's air is a complete mystery.</p><p>This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. ©2018 FOX News Network, LLC. All rights reserved. All market data delayed 20 minutes.</p>
science fraud. But it appears to be imploding amid allegations of financial mismanagement, attempted extortion and faked documents.</p><p>Its founders are battling in court over control of the group, as well as some $900,000 in its bank account. One of them, David Schnare, has been accused by his former allies of botching the group’s tax-exempt status and of attempting to extort a quarter-million dollars from its coffers.</p><p>Mr. Schnare, in an interview, initially expressed reluctance to discuss the situation at Free Market. “Attorneys are not supposed to talk about and try cases in the press,” he said. Then he added, “I completely deny all these nasty accusations.”</p><p>This document (pdf) details the allegations against David Schnare in the case concerning the implosion of the Free Market Environmental Law Clinic. Mr. Schnare has denied the accusations.</p><p>The legal battle sprawls across three civil lawsuits filed against Mr. Schnare by Matthew Hardin, 28, the chairman of Free Market’s board. Neither side recognized the other’s claim of control, so the fight began with Free Market essentially suing itself.</p><p>If that sounds confusing, it certainly was to Chief Judge Bruce D. White of Fairfax County Circuit Court. “We have a plaintiff and defendant who are the same party,” he said at a brief hearing here last month. “That’s not something I see every day.”</p><p>Judge White said he would consolidate the cases under a single judge who, he seemed relieved to say, would not be himself. The parties were due back in court this week, but entered into settlement talks as this article neared publication.</p><p>Discussions reached a breaking point in January, during a meeting between Mr. Hardin, Mr. Schnare and Chaim Mandelbaum, a lawyer Mr. Schnare had installed as executive director of Free Market before his brief return to the E.P.A.</p><p>In a recording of the meeting reviewed by The New York Times, Mr. Schnare can be heard saying that if Mr. Hardin and Mr. Horner did not comply, he could take control of the money. But, he added, “that’s not what I want to have to go in front of a judge and have to deal with.”</p><p>After that meeting, Mr. Hardin, who also serves as commonwealth’s attorney for Greene County, Va., alerted the I.R.S. to the group’s problems.</p><p>Some of Mr. Schnare’s targets are also watching the case. Michael E. Mann, a climate scientist at Pennsylvania State University who has long been a focus of Mr. Schnare’s legal maneuvers, said in an email that he had been following the fight with “some interest (and not a little bit of schadenfreude).”</p><p>Lauren Kurtz, executive director of the Climate Science Legal Defense Fund, which supports scientists in legal battles, said that while the conservative groups had pursued researchers’ emails in the name of transparency, there had been “complete lack of transparency in how they were running their own organization.”</p>
and internet-beaming balloons are no longer just science projects.</p><p>Both ventures are becoming their own independent businesses within Alphabet, the technology conglomerate that owns Google and now 13 other units, Alphabet said on Wednesday. Their so-called graduation from Alphabet’s research lab, X, means the delivery-drone and balloon-internet teams may now be on a path to soon offer commercial services and earn revenue.</p>
ennes who led the research, said she set out to understand whether the snort could be used as an measure of the horse’s mood.</p><p>She and her collaborators recorded 560 snorts among 48 privately owned and riding school horses. All the horses snorted — as little as once or as often as 13 times an hour. The horses mainly snorted during calm and relaxing activities, and those that spent more time out of doors snorted the most, the study found.</p><p>When a horse was snorting, the researchers also recorded the animal’s ear position; forward-pointing ears are a known signal of a positive internal state, Ms. Stomp said. Researchers also developed a composite score of each animal’s stress level when snorting, with measurements including how much time a horse spent facing the wall in its stall, as well as its level of interaction with or aggressive behavior toward the researcher.</p><p>Ms. Stomp said her work was motivated by the desire to help people better understand and meet the needs of their animals. “We think that with this acoustic indicator, maybe they will be able to test when their horses are in good conditions or not,” she said.</p><p>Not all horses may be snorting in contentment, however, but rather in discomfort or simply acting on a physical need, akin to humans blowing their noses.</p><p>Sue McDonnell, a specialist in equine physiology and behavior at the University of Pennsylvania School of Veterinary Medicine, said not enough is known to draw conclusions about a horse’s emotional state from its snorts. “I think it’s a huge overreach, an over-interpretation of their data,” she said.</p><p>Dr. McDonnell, who daily observes her school’s herd, takes the more traditional view that snorting is a way of clearing a horse’s nasal passages. She’s noticed a difference when she lets the horses feed on short blades of grass versus longer ones, which are more likely to tickle their noses. Horses eat shorter grass just as enthusiastically as longer blades, “but they don’t do all that snorting,” she said.</p><p>Horses also snort in negative circumstances, Dr. McDonnell said. If they encounter an aggressive or fearful situation, their “fight or flight” response includes a bump in adrenaline, which dries their mouth and nose. Once the situation resolves and adrenaline levels drop, secretions like saliva and mucus start flowing again, Dr. McDonnell said. She’s watched stallions snorting as their adrenaline levels fall, suggesting that the flow of mucus caused them to make the noise, she said.</p><p>Then again, horses probably do use snorting to somehow communicate to others in the herd, alerting them when danger has passed. But that doesn’t translate into knowing if a horse is happy, she added.</p><p>While Karyn Malinowski, professor and director of the Rutgers University Equine Science Center in New Jersey, discouraged the practice of ascribing human emotions to animals, she said the new study’s findings made sense to her. The horses she studies display emotions, like sorrow when a close companion dies, so she believes they’re certainly capable of happiness.</p><p>Dr. Malinowski said the study also aligns with her physiological research that shows horses are much less stressed when they are allowed to live outside, rather than in stables. In the new study, horses that lived in more natural conditions snorted more often, and even the stabled horses snorted more when they were outside.</p><p>“I’ve been studying stress for 40 years. The worst thing you can do for a horse is to keep it inside,” Dr. Malinowski said. Outside, “they’re happier, healthier, the air is fresher.”</p><p>Lauren Brubaker, a Ph.D. student at Oregon State University specializing in human-animal interactions, said the study also matches the experience of people in the horseback riding world. “You hear a lot of riders and instructors and trainers who will say they’re looking for horses to do that snorting behavior while they’re riding, because they believe the horses are relaxing and releasing adrenaline,” she said.</p><p>Ms. Brubaker said it was too early to conclude that snorting is a form of active communication. She would like to see research into snorting behavior when horses are ridden, are pulling carriages, used for therapy and performing in shows or races.</p><p>Ms. Stomp said she planned to investigate whether dust levels in stalls affect snorting, to further explore her hypothesis that snorting is about more than nostril-clearing.</p>
or redistributed. ©2018 FOX News Network, LLC. All rights reserved. All market data delayed 20 minutes.</p><p> Artist's impression of the star KELT-9 and its planet KELT-9b, the hottest known exoplanet Credit: MPIA </p><p>The hottest known exoplanet is so hot that its atmosphere is "boiling off" and the escaping gas is being captured by its nearby host star, a new study shows. </p><p>"This planet reminds me of the mythical Icarus, who came to close to the sun and crashed," Thomas Henning, co-author of the study and director at the Max Planck Institute for Astronomy, said in the statement. "Our planet will not crash, but it will certainly lose an essential part of itself, namely its atmosphere."</p><p>Based on the size of the planet's extended atmosphere, the researchers estimate "that the planet is losing hydrogen gas at a significant rate of more than 100,000 tons of hydrogen per second," according to the statement. "The star is 'boiling off' the planet's atmosphere, and pulling the gas onto itself, in a blatant case of interplanetary theft."</p><p>This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. ©2018 FOX News Network, LLC. All rights reserved. All market data delayed 20 minutes.</p>
ve are happy and in good condition but remain in quarantine and will stay hospitalized for a week because of the risk of rare infections, doctors said Tuesday.</p><p>Doctors were conducting a battery of tests on the boys, and X-rays showed that two might have pneumonia. All of them were being treated with antibiotics and received vaccinations, including for tetanus and rabies, said Thailand’s permanent secretary for public health, Jesada Chokedamrongsuk.</p><p>“This morning, all eight are in good health, with no fever and in a good mood,” Dr. Jesada said. “They miss their home and they are happy.”</p><p>Medical specialists who are not involved in treating the boys said that while the risk of serious infection is low, they could face other short- or long-term complications, including post-traumatic stress disorder.</p><p>The 12 boys, ages 11 to 16, and their soccer coach had been trapped in the cave since June 23. A team of foreign and Thai divers began extracting them Sunday, starting with four of the older boys. Four more emerged on Monday, and two of the remaining team members were rescued on Tuesday afternoon.</p><p>Like the rescue itself, the close medical attention from one of the government’s highest-ranking doctors underscores the unusual nature of the mission to save the youths and their coach.</p><p>The boys are now in different stages of recovery after more than two weeks in the dark cave. The first group out has been able to adjust to normal lighting, but latter ones are still wearing sunglasses, Dr. Jesada said.</p><p>All are being kept in the same room at Chiangrai Prachanukroh Hospital, the main hospital in Chiang Rai Province.</p><p>Also joining them in quarantine will be four Thai divers who stayed with the boys for more than a week after their discovery in a flooded cavern, said Dr. Thongchai Lertwilairatnapong, the public health doctor for Thailand’s northern region.</p><p>That includes an army doctor, Lt. Col. Dr. Phak Lohanchun, who was seen in video clips treating the boys’ cuts and abrasions.</p><p>The four divers face less risk than the boys, however, because they were never malnourished and they spent less time in the cave, experts said.</p><p>Relatives of the first four rescued boys have been allowed to see them through a window, and a similar visit will be arranged for the others after doctors give their approval, the head of the rescue operation, Narongsak Osottanakorn, said Tuesday.</p><p>Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-ocha visited them on Monday when he came to check on the rescue operation.</p><p>Although the likelihood of serious infection is small, specialists said they were taking precautions in case the boys acquired a rare disease while stuck in the cave.</p><p>One danger is getting an infection from bats or rodents they might have encountered underground. The boys reported seeing no wildlife in the flooded cavern where they took refuge, but doctors were still concerned.</p><p>“We don’t have experience in this kind of deep cave, but they said they didn’t see any bats or animals,” Dr. Jesada said. “Bats can lead to several diseases.”</p><p>The hospital has sent the boys’ blood samples to a Bangkok laboratory that specializes in emerging infectious diseases.</p><p>One danger is Nipah virus, a disease that can be transmitted to humans by bats through bites, among other possibilities, said medical specialists who are not involved in treating the boys.</p><p>Potential symptoms range from headaches and fever to, in severe cases, acute respiratory failure or even death.</p><p>The risk that any of the group has Nipah virus is extremely low, he said, in part because the cavern is so deep inside the Tham Luang Cave network that bats would probably avoid it during the rainy season.</p><p>“However, these infections are either not contagious, meaning human-to-human transmission is not possible, or transmission may be extremely rare,” she said in an email.</p><p>Relatively minor ailments — minor scrapes, for example, or bacterial infections picked up from contaminated water — could become a problem for the boys because their immune systems have probably been compromised during their ordeal, medical specialists said.</p><p>“When you’re balancing and moving along an irregular-floored tunnel and you slip or stumble, the first thing you’ll do is put your hand or arm out onto the nearest bit of wall,” Mr. Farr said by telephone. “And those walls, in caves, can be very sharp.”</p><p>However, Dr. Phak’s treatment of the boys’ cuts and abrasions after he arrived at the cave should have reduced that risk.</p><p>Beyond physical ailments, Dr. Soon said, the boys could eventually experience anxiety, panic attacks, recurrent nightmares, phobias or other symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder.</p><p>Dr. Jesada said psychologists had begun visiting the boys to help them deal with the trauma of being trapped in the cave.</p><p>All these precautions mean that the relatives who have been awaiting the boys’ return must keep their distance.</p><p>“The parents are looking at the boys through a window,” Dr. Jesada said. “When there is confirmation that there are no infections, we will allow the parents to visit the boys.”</p><p>The doctors are monitoring the diets of the boys, who were given high-protein food after being found in the cave but still complained of being hungry.</p><p>At the hospital, a doctor approved the boys’ request for bread with chocolate spread, officials said, but rejected another request for a favorite food, pad krapao, or fried pork with basil.</p><p>Richard C. Paddock reported from Mae Sai, and Mike Ives from Hong Kong. Navaon Siradapuvadol and Muktita Suhartono contributed reporting from Mae Sai.</p>