Saturday, December 22, 2012

CNN: Morgan interviews Summly's teen founder; Zakaria's "Tough Decisions; Gupta, Lemon on psychopathology

Tonight, CNN had an interesting pre-Christmas Saturday evening, and I didn’t venture out into the cold winds and snow flurries. 

The most interesting and upbeat item was Piers Morgan’s interview of the British teenager, Nick D’Aloisio, now 17, who “innovated” the content summary service called “Summly”.  I have to admit that I will need to try it myself soon (I have a Motorola Droid under contract, not an iPhone, not sure yet if it works – but Nick said his summaries fit any size screen.  Now Google has already formatted Blogger  content to fit nicely onto smartphones.  I don’t know if further summaries are necessary.  Nick seems to be a programming prodigy on the level of Mark Zuckerberg.  He earned venture capital at age 15, the youngest ever.

Earlier, at 8 PM, Fareed Zakaria aired “Tough Decisions” (link ).    Zakaria first interviewed Donilon about Obama’s decisions in tracking down Osama bin Laden (which we’ll see a lot more of soon when “Zero Dark Thirty” is in general release Jan. 11).  He then interviewed Paul O’Neill, who implemented a “perfect safety” policy at Alcoa when he became CEO of the company, to gave confidence of his workers.  He also interviewed Henry Kissinger as to the clandestine bargaining that led to Nixon’s visit to Red China in 1972, shortly after the Maoist Cultural Revolution. Sunday Zakaria added another "tough decision": how the Obama administration decided to bail out the auto industry in 2004.  

Sanjay Gupta today laired “Inside the Violent Mind”.  The three patterns are “traumatized, psychotic, and psychopathic”.  Gupta interviewed Dr. Schouten, and them Andrew Solomon, author of “Far from the Tree”.  Gupta discussed many of the specific cases.  In many of them, it seems as though the thought patterns included nihilism (typical of terrorists), but generally we don’t have details as to what they people had been doing before their attacks.  In general, in most cases, there seem to have been considerable evidence of very severe mental disturbance of some kind for a long time.  Schouten discussed the idea that psychopathy is not an officially diagnosable mental illness.  It probably has a biological basis, but it is viewed as “evil”. 

Gipta made the point that a lot of severe schizophrenia appears in young adulthood (roughly ages 18-26). I  have known personally hundreds or thousands of people in this age range in my life, and have yet to know of a single case in someone I know, however -- that is, apart from other patients at the National Institutes of Health when I was "hospitalized" in the latter part of 1962, none of whom I had met in my "own" life.   

Tonight, CNN's Don Lemon described his own undercover operation in buying a gun, which he said takes much less time than getting a driver's license.  

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