How Religion Can Move Us to Do Terrible Things

TIME

Anyone who has ever played on a team knows the thrill of rooting for your own side’s success while rejoicing at your opponents’ losses. Now ratchet up that gratifying feeling with two other ingredients: an unwavering belief in a vengeful God, and a sense of injury stemming from feeling like a reviled, hard-done-by outsider, and you have some of the precursors of the Charlie Hebdo massacre.

Clearly, the murders are not remotely justifiable. At the same time, such violence is not haphazard. Combine extreme religion’s blinders with social ostracism, then season with the testosterone-driven aggressive impulses often found among disaffected young men and you can end up with a lethal stew.

What’s the evidence? Time and again, social psychology experiments have shown that ordinary people can be spurred to commit horrific acts of cruelty. Giving them authority over arbitrarily defined transgressors can prompt brutality, as the Stanford Prison Experiment—in which…

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Ohio Furniture Chain Loses $1.5 Million in Ohio State Game-Related Promotion

TIME

Did you bet on the Ohio State-Oregon game? Did you lose? Cheer up: We wager your loss wasn’t anywhere near as bad as Ashley Furniture’s.

The Ohio chain made a perhaps-ill-advised promise to write off purchases of $1,999 or more from Dec. 17-30 if the Buckeyes beat Alabama and then went on to win the national championship by at least seven points.

Admittedly, it was a long shot: Alabama was the No. 1 seed, and even fewer people predicted the Buckeyes overrunning Oregon 42-20 on Monday.

The promotion was in place at stores in Columbus, Cincinnati, Dayton and Florence, Kentucky. Over 500 people made purchases that totaled $1.5 million, according to parent company Morris Home Furnishings’ vice president of marketing, Rob Klaben.

“We did work with a third-party company that underwrote the promotion. So we’re excited to see a win,” Klaben told ABC News.

But he added –…

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The New Ben & Jerry’s Flavors Are Perfect for People Who Like Cookies and Ice Cream Together

This is the best ice-cream ever!!!!!!!!!

TIME

Good news for people who only buy cookie dough ice cream so they can pick out the cookie dough parts: Ben & Jerry’s has announced new flavors with a cookie butter “core.” They are:

Boom Chocolatta! Cookie Core: Mocha & Caramel Ice Creams with Chocolate Cookies, Fudge Flakes & a Chocolate Cookie Core.

Peanut Buttah Cookie Core: Peanut Butter Ice Cream with Crunchy Peanut Butter Sugar Bits, Peanut Butter Cookies & a Peanut Butter Cookie Core

Spectacular Speculoos Cookie Core: Dark Caramel & Vanilla Ice Cream with Speculoos Cookies & Speculoos Cookie Butter Core

Why introduce an ice cream line when it’s so cold outside? As Bloomberg Businessweek reports, “New flavors also give consumers a reason to buy ice cream during a season when most are more inclined to eat other things for dessert.”

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