Thoughts | Actions | Destiny

“Our thoughts become our words, our words become our actions, our actions become our character, our character becomes our destiny.”
– Gandhi



Think Cancers Are Genetic? Watch This!

July 23, 2016

Some cancers may have a genetic factor to them. But many people think that all cancers have a genetic link to them. In this interview from 2009, Andreas Moritz discusses genetics and whether or not there is a direct link to cancers. Find out what really might be going on and what you can do to protect yourself! Do you think cancers are genetic? Watch this.

How Your Thoughts & Beliefs Are Manipulated By The Media

Zy Marquiez
July 8, 2016

We are going to see what happens to a person’s thoughts/beliefs when they are presented with a constant barrage of certain type of information by the mainstream media.

In his groundbreaking book, Thinking, Fast And Slow, Nobel Prize Winner Daniel Kahneman takes a gander at some research conducted by his colleagues Slovic, Lichtenstein, and a former student Fischhoff.

Kahneman goes on to cover the landmark research conducted by the above individuals in relation to “public perceptions of risks, including a survey that has become the standard example of an availability bias.”

Quick side bar.

For clarification purposes, in plain-speak, an availability bias is when individuals are influenced by circumstances/events/ideas that have taken place more recently due to availability – such as a report in the media being widespread and ubiquitous.  This therein skews the actual decision making process of individuals.

Continuing on, Slovic, Lichtenstein & Fischhoff “asked participants in their survey to consider pairs of causes of death: diabetes and asthma, or stroke and accidents.  For each pair, the subjects indicated the more frequent cause and estimated the ratio of the two frequencies. The judgments were compared to health statistics of the time.  Here’s a sample of their findings:

-Stroke cause almost twice as many deaths as all accidents combined, but 80% of respondents judged accidental death to be more likely.
– Tornadoes were seen as more frequent killers than asthma, although the latter cause 20 times more deaths.
-Death by lightning was judged less likely than death from botulism even though it is 52 times more frequent.
-Death by disease is 18 times as likely as accidental death, but the two were judged about equally likely.
-Death by accidents was judged to be more than 300 times more likely than death by diabetes, but the true ratio was 1:4

The lesson is clear: estimates of causes of death are warped by media coverage.  The coverage is itself biased towards novelty and poignancy.”[1][Emphasis Added]

Kahneman carries on:

Unusual events (such as botulism) attack disproportionate attention and are consequently perceived as less unusual than they really are.  The world in our heads is not a precise replica of reality; our expectations about the frequency of events are distorted by the prevalence and emotional intensity of the messages to which we are exposed.” [2][Emphasis Added]

As the cited examples above showcase, people’s reality structure can be overwhelming warped – especially when coupled with fears – by how much coverage a certain subject gets by the mainstream media.

Could that also apply to the disconcerting topic of terrorism?  Quite so.

Since 9/11, terrorism in its many shapes and forms, has become an omnipresent issue throughout society.   Has that that threat of terrorism been overstated?   Let’s find out.

In fact, years ago it was found that ” the leading cause of deaths for Americans traveling abroad is not terrorism, or murder … or even crime of any type.

It’s car crashes.

In fact:

With the exception of the Philippines, more Americans died from road crashes in all of the 160 countries surveyed than from homicides.

The U.S. Department of State reports that only 17 U.S. citizens were killed worldwide as a result of terrorism in 2011. That figure includes deaths in Afghanistan, Iraq and all other theaters of war.

In contrast, the American agency which tracks health-related issues – the U.S. Centers for Disease Control – rounds up the most prevalent causes of death in the United States:

Comparing the CDC numbers to terrorism deaths means (keep in mind that – from here to the end of the piece – we are consistently and substantially understating the risk of other causes of death as compared to terrorism, because we are comparing deaths from various causes within the United States against deaths from terrorism worldwide):

– You are 35,079 times more likely to die from heart disease than from a terrorist attack

– You are 33,842 times more likely to die from cancer than from a terrorist attack

Wikipedia notes that obesity is a a contributing factor in 100,000–400,000 deaths in the United States per year. That makes obesity 5,882 to times 23,528 more likely to kill you than a terrorist.

The annual number of deaths in the U.S. due to avoidable medical errors is as high as 100,000. Indeed, one of the world’s leading medical journals – Lancet – reported in 2011:

A November, 2010, document from the Office of the Inspector General of the Department of Health and Human Services reported that, when in hospital, one in seven beneficiaries of Medicare (the government-sponsored health-care programme for those aged 65 years and older) have complications from medical errors, which contribute to about 180 000 deaths of patients per year.

That’s just Medicare beneficiaries, not the entire American public. Scientific American noted in 2009:

Preventable medical mistakes and infections are responsible for about 200,000 deaths in the U.S. each year, according to an investigation by the Hearst media corporation.

And a new study published in the Journal of Patient Safety says the numbers may be up to 440,000 each year.

But let’s use the lower – 100,000 – figure. That still means that you are 5,882 times more likely to die from medical error than terrorism.”[3]

Let’s ask the question again: has the threat of terrorism been overstated?

What do you think?

Given that we have learned that that are many more greater threats to our lively hoods, not only should society not be as fearful regarding terrorism propaganda that the mainstream media exacerbates, but the real problems we should be concerned about like for instance the likelihood of dying from medical mistakesare severely underreported.

This is quite disconcerting given how many people over estimate the quality of health in the united states, even though its nowhere near the top country in health in the world.

What the above information shows is that if the individual is not careful, not only will their view of the world be quite distorted, but the information that they should be looking into will be completely overlooked.

Let this be a word of caution for those who are quick to trust the mainstream media – or any other media for that matter including this one.

Always, always, always verify the information, and make sure not to attach emotion to it.

Sift through it, cross-check, use various sources, and don’t fall for the fear porn.

Be open-minded, but skeptical.

Remember, we’re responsible for what goes in our minds.  Let make sure its quality information.



[1] Daniel Kahneman, Thinking, Fast And Slow, pg. 138.
[2] Ibid., pg 138.
[3] GlobalResearch, The Terrorism Statistics Every American Needs To Hear, May 19, 2014.

[Book] Review – Thinking, Fast & Slow by Daniel Kahneman

Zy Marquiez
June 14, 2016

Thinking, Fast & Slow by Daniel Kahneman is an incisive, academic, cogent, and far-reaching piece of work that should be part of everyone’s library.

Nobel Prize winning Kahneman unleashes a foray into the domain of decision-making, psychology &  problem-solving unlike nothing ever seen within this discipline previously.  Kahneman is the individual responsible as to why the subject of Behavioral Economics has grown as fast as its grown for quite some time.

Kahneman meticulously tackles many thought-provoking aspects in psychology with scrupulous scientific rigor.  This book is the author’s magnum opus, without a doubt.

This relentless journey into the domain of the brain leaves no stone unturned, which is why Kahneman work has become unprecedented to economists and others alike.

The author parses his main idea into two sets.  The brain, according to Kahneman, splits things into a binary cognitive system.  This is what the author denotes as System 1, and System 2.

System 1 is automatic, emotive, unconscious, responsible for lightning-quick decisions, whilst System 2 is methodical, incisive, conscious, and orderly.

Each system plays its part in shaping the world in how we see it.  The book tackles nigh every little crevice available to the author in search for the understanding of the above-mentioned systems, its ramifications, and what we can learn do to learn from each.

However, in interest of full disclosure this is not the quickest book to read, even for avid readers unless one is perhaps hyper interested in the subject matter.  The book is also quite repetitive in a few spots.  Then again, some people learn better from rereading things a few times, and from different angles, so take that for whats it worth.

Still, the book is chock-full of intriguing data sets and experiments, and the way in which the concepts are discussed, although overly methodical in certain spots, is definitely worth the read.

Kahneman’s journey into the studies discussed attempts to leave no stone unturned in his bid to shed light into the ideas of the illusion of validity, narrow framing, planning fallacies, regression to the mean, the illusion of understanding, the endowment effect, and much, much more.

Ultimately the book seeks to show us how we can trust ourselves – our brain – better, and how to succeed in understanding the various facets that cognitive behavior goes through.   Coupled with that, Kahneman also makes it a point to give individuals practical ways in which to hone our mental skill and be able to use System 1 and System 2 in a way that benefits us most.

If you are an individual that is serious about the inner workings of the mind, especially in regards to decision making, the book – although lengthy – will keep you busy pondering many seams from which to draw wisdom from.