“CEO Syndrome” and Bad Decisions

By Paul Thomas Zenki

When expertise can drive massive failure… Take a look at the photos of the men just above. How much DNA do you think they share? You might guess they’re related. Brothers, perhaps, maybe cousins. But there are obvious differences between them. The man on the left has a narrower head and neck, and less developed […]

Stock Trading Is (Literally) a Bigger Gamble than Poker

By Paul Thomas Zenki

Merely beating the average for 10 years makes you a superstar … One of the largest studies of stock trading was carried out through the 1990s and early 2000s by Brad Barber of UC Davis and Terry Odean of UC Berkeley. Millions of trades pointed to one conclusion — it’s all a giant crapshoot. Odean and Barber […]

The World’s Top Selling Album Was Mixed on “Pathetic” Speakers

By Paul Thomas Zenki

Because you have to be where your customers are … On a cool Wednesday morning in April of 1982, Michael Jackson and Quincy Jones showed up at Westlake Recording Studios in Los Angeles to tape a new song with Paul McCartney. It was the opening session for what was to become the biggest selling album […]

Understanding Transgender, for Cis Folks

By Paul Thomas Zenki

It’s not a trend or a social construct. It’s biological reality….   Imagine you wake one morning to find a third arm, fully formed from the elbow down, extending from your solar plexus right in the center of your chest. It looks like your other limbs, you can move it just as easily, and it […]

What Is the Hard Problem of Consciousness?

By Paul Thomas Zenki

It’s a tale of two datasets….   Brad has volunteered to sit in a lab, stare at a screen, and say out loud what he sees. All the while, parts of his brain are being observed and recorded. Later, in another lab, Amy can look at the recordings of Brad’s brain and know when he […]

You Are Already the Buddha

By Paul Thomas Zenki

The trick is realizing it… There’s an old joke: What was the Zen Buddhist’s order at the hot dog cart? “Make me one with everything.” Back when I started sitting, around 30 years ago, that was pretty much the way I approached it. By meditating, I was going to accomplish something. I was going to […]

No, Your Mind Can’t Be Uploaded to a Computer

By Paul Thomas Zenki

Sorry, folks, but digital immortality by upload is impossible … Like the song says, “everyone wants to be on a postage stamp, but nobody wants to die.” And lately, one of the hottest topics for those who’d like to keep the party going forever is mind uploading, the notion that we can transfer our consciousness […]

Why I Literally Taxed Myself, and Got Happier

By Paul Thomas Zenki

Plus, it made others happier, too … Can paying taxes actually make you happier? Well, yeah. Just think about it. How many things are you happy to have that you could never pay for if they weren’t funded by taxes? The roads, the parks, a justice system, universal education, a social safety net (’cause you […]

The One Sentence That Shatters the Trumpist Fantasy

By Paul Thomas Zenki

What Trump’s supporters refuse to understand … We’ve been to this rodeo before. What should be a crystal clear case against Don Trump’s betrayal of American democracy gets lost in a fog of distraction — while the news media keep churning the air.

Why I Stopped Forgiving People… and Maybe You Should, Too

By Paul Thomas Zenki

Forgiveness was turning me into a chump … Forgive and forget, right? I used to think that. I don’t anymore. Now look, I know I’m up against some real heavy hitters here when I say maybe you should stop forgiving people. After all, isn’t forgiveness a cornerstone of the major religions?