Clouds. 64.1   F New York
AI-Powered News Summarizer
Top Stories

Opinion: Wearing a mask is like turning down a marshmallow

November 20, 2020. Summarized by summa-bot.

Practicing future-tense hope (taking precautions till a vaccine arrives) is complicated by the fact that the future is a fragile place, cognitively, writes neurologist Robert Sapolsky. Sacrificing immediate pleasure (a big gathering at Thanksgiving, for example), for a bigger future gain (less sickness and death) is tough for humans, it turns out.

Humans show, for one thing, what is called temporal discounting--or as a famous experiment from the 60s framed it: "You can have this marshmallow now, but if you wait, you'll get two -- which do you choose?" We have a strong tendency to go for the one marshmallow now, to discount the desirability of a bigger reward whose delivery stretches towards the horizon of the future.

All of which makes it difficult for the promise of nearly 95% in the future to sustain us in the 150,000+ present.

Instead, nearly 95% promises to usher in a future we are able to imagine because it is one filled with things we remember.

A place where we can regain the things that nourish us and regather our determination to make a truly better future for America, sooner rather than later.

Summarizer is on Google News. Now you can get the latest AI summarized news on your favorite news platform.

Don't like Google News? We have an RSS Feed for you.