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Psychology of Disaster

Earthfiles investigative reporter Linda Moulton Howe discussed the bizarre story of the alleged human-alien hybrid found dead in Los Angeles and said to be involved with the CIA; mysterious and spectacular crop formations found in the wheat fields of Wiltshire, England on the summer solstice this past June, and the breaking story about the sun going to sleep in 2030 and ushering in a brutal mini ice age across the planet.

In the first hour, political commentator and economist John Lott reacted to the shooting of two reporters in Virginia on Wednesday and the ramifications the event may have on gun laws.

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Psychology of Disaster

Show Archive
Date: Sunday - August 10, 2008
Host: Ian Punnett
Guests: Amanda Ripley

For the first 2 ½ hours, journalist Amanda Ripley discussed the psychology of disaster response and her new book, The Unthinkable. When a person encounters a disastrous circumstance they may first react with disbelief or denial, as the brain tries to normalize the situation, she explained. Under extreme stress, a person can experience time distortion, with events slowing down or speeding up.

In a desperate situation, strangers often become more generous with each other, and people support each other as a group, she detailed. Blue collar men without children are the most likely to perform risky, heroic acts, while women are more likely to survive severe storms such as hurricanes, because they are willing to evacuate, Ripley reported.

Agencies in charge, such as FEMA, tend to distrust how the public will respond to disasters, she said. Assessing your risks in advance in advance of calamity is helpful, Ripley commented, and people who take an active role in responding to a disaster tend to have a quicker emotional recovery than those who remain passive.

During the remainder of the program, callers shared their survivor stories.

Bumper Music

Bumper music from Sunday August 10, 2008

  • Moms
    A Tribe Called Quest
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