Ever since viewing screens entered the home, many observers have worried that they put our brains into a stupor. An early strain of research claimed that when we watch television, our brains mostly exhibit slow alpha waves - indicating a low level of arousal, similar to when we are daydreaming.
The classic war movies of the post-Vietnam era have generally taken on grand, philosophical themes: the meaninglessness of war, the grinding down of man by the machine - the machine being war itself, represented by someone like Gunnery Sergeant Hartman in 'Full Metal Jacket,' the sadistic marine who turns his boys into instruments of death.
Every congresswoman surely endures the same strains that drive some of her male colleagues to have affairs: lots of travel, families far away, heady work that makes a domestic routine seem distant and boring. But the stakes are much higher for women, because they are still judged by a different standard.
There are always signs that a reign is ending, and they are usually spotted not in the king himself but in his court. In the inner circle, latent jealousies between advisers spill into open conflict, as they angrily debate who is to blame for the calamity, chewing over each other's past errors and pointing the finger at old and nascent enemies.
Evolutionary psychology tells us that men, especially powerful men, feel invincible and entitled to spread their seed, and that women can't resist the scent of masculine power. Women, by contrast, are said to be more altruistic and collaborative, seeking power so that they can share it with others.