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A Book For Those Who Forget One Person Can Make a Difference

For anyone who watches the news every day (especially if you watch MSNBC or Fox), it can be easy to forget that one person can make a massive,...


For anyone who watches the news every day (especially if you watch MSNBC or Fox), it can be easy to forget that one person can make a massive, humongous, undeniable impact on the world. I've had my many cynical moments-we all have. Which is why it's nice to be reminded from time to time that there are muses out there we can look to for some pointers. Today, here's someone to think about: Jacqueline Novogratz, founder of Acumen Fund and first-time author.Yesterday, Novogratz launched her first book, a memoir called The Blue Sweater: Bridging the Gap Between Rich and Poor in an Interconnected World. It chronicles her life's work, from early microfinance operations, to investing in and supporting entrepreneurs building critical, scalable businesses in the developing world. We haven't read the book yet (we just got our copy), but if the exerpt she read at her launch last night is any indication, it's safe to say the book should be required reading for anyone interested in the social-entrepreneur space.Acumen (which was one of GOOD's nonprofit partners) has always done interesting things in the business world, and their recent effort, Pulse, which helps investors measure the social and financial impact of their philanthropic investments, is no exception. (You can read a little bit about it here.)And to learn more about the woman who started it all, skip her Wikipedia page and read the book.
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A study out of Belgium found that smart people are much less likely to be bigoted. The same study also found that people who are bigoted are more likely to overestimate their own intelligence.

A horrifying story out of Germany is a perfect example of this truth on full display: an anti-Semite was so dumb the was unable to open a door at the temple he tried to attack.

On Wednesday, October 9, congregants gathered at a synagogue in Humboldtstrasse, Germany for a Yom Kippur service, and an anti-Semite armed with explosives and carrying a rifle attempted to barge in through the door.

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Communities
via Andi-Graf / Pixabay

The old saying goes something like, "Possessions don't make you happy." A more dire version is, "What you own, ends up owning you."

Are these old adages true or just the empty words of ancient party-poopers challenging you not to buy an iPhone 11? According to a new study of 968 young adults by the University of Arizona, being materialistic only brings us misery.

The study examined how engaging in pro-environmental behaviors affects the well-being of millenials. The study found two ways in which they modify their behaviors to help the environment: they either reduce what they consume or purchase green items.

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Culture

One of the biggest obstacles to getting assault weapons banned in the United States is the amount of money they generate.

There were around 10 million guns manufactured in the U.S. in 2016 of which around 2 million were semiautomatic, assault-style weapons. According to the National Shooting Sports Foundation, the firearms industry's trade association, the U.S. industry's total economic impact in 2016 alone was $51 billion.

In 2016, the NRA gave over $50 million to buy support from lawmakers. When one considers the tens of millions of dollars spent on commerce and corruption, it's no wonder gun control advocates have an uphill battle.

That, of course, assumes that money can control just about anyone in the equation. However, there are a few brave souls who actually value human life over profit.

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Health
via Reddit and NASA / Wikimedia Commons

Trees give us a unique glimpse into our past. An examination of tree rings can show us what the climate was like in a given year. Was it a wet winter? Were there hurricanes in the summer? Did a forest fire ravage the area?

An ancient tree in New Zealand is the first to provide evidence of the near reversal of the Earth's magnetic field over 41,000 years ago.

Over the past 83 million years there have been 183 magnetic pole reversals, a process that takes about 7,000 years to complete.

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The Planet
via Pixabay

The final episode of "The Sopranos" made a lot of people angry because it ends with mob boss Tony Soprano and his family eating at an ice cream parlor while "Don't Stop Believin'" by Journey plays in the background … and then, suddenly, the screen turns black.

Some thought the ending was a dirty trick, while others saw it as a stroke of brilliance. A popular theory is that Tony gets shot, but doesn't know it because, as his brother-in-law Bobby Baccala said, "You probably don't even hear it when it happens, right?"

So the show gives us all an idea of what it's like to die. We're here and then we're not.

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Health