Respectful Insolence

Archives for October, 2006

The Bible eternally unchanged and unchanging?

…not according to this article: If 40 percent of Americans refuse to believe that humans evolved from earlier hominids, how many will accept that the book we know as the Bible evolved from earlier texts and was not handed down, in toto, by God in its present form? The fossil evidence for human evolution is…

Jail for scientific misconduct?

Having been out of town a lot the last couple of weeks, I haven’t read the New York Times Magazine the last couple of Sundays. It’s a magazine that I either read cover to cover or toss aside having read only The Ethicist, something that usually happens when it delves into some annoying hipster topic…

The Hoff one more time…

Yesterday I was in a strange mood; so I posted a couple of David Hasselhoff videos, asking the question: Why is this guy such a big pop star in Germany? Fellow ScienceBlogger Mike the Mad Biologist then informed me that the videos that I posted (the Hoff doing Rhinestone Cowboy and Secret Agent Man) aren’t…

A “reality” television show is being developed in Israel that has to be about the biggest misnomer I’ve ever heard. You see, infamous fake “spoon bender” Uri Geller is doing a televisions show in which he seeks an “heir” to his psychic/telekinetic throne: JERUSALEM (Reuters) – After four decades of bending spoons, halting clocks, reading…

And so it begins…

…the 2006 World Series. The Tigers are rested and ready; the Cardinals just finished taking out the Mets in a prolonged series. Will the Tigers be rusty in Game One? Or will they pick up right where they left off? My prediction? The Tigers in six. GO TIGERS!

Because you demanded it…

…OK, no you didn’t. But I found it amusing, anyway. Can anyone explain to me why David Hasselhoff is such a phenomenon in Germany and other parts of Europe? Or why the video below ever got made: It’s a question I’ve asked before.

Die-hard Tolkien fan that I am, I was struck at how breath-takingly stupid an analogy this was, even for Rick Santorum. For one thing, as Lance Manion points out, the forces of good didn’t start the war. For another thing, Frodo in essence failed. He succumbed to the temptation of the One Ring at the…

Fast approaching: The Skeptics’ Circle

Don’t forget, everyone, my favorite blog carnival (favorite, of course, because I happen to be the one coordinating it) the Skeptic’s Circle is fast approaching and will appear at Left Brain/Right Brain on Thursday, October 26. Naturally, because of Kev’s interest in debunking autism quackery, his decrying of the fall in vaccination rates resulting from…

I had considered putting Your Friday Dose of Woo on hiatus this week. It seemed rather superfluous. After all, for whatever reason, whatever confluence of strangeness, this blog has read like Your Friday Dose of Woo for nearly the entire week. I mean, come on. I started out fisking that über-woo Deepak Chopra on Monday,…

Sadly for some of my readers, it won’t be a Mets-Tigers World Series. The Cardinals pulled it out in game seven in a classic fashion, winning the game 3-1. FOX isn’t going to like an all-Midwest World Series. You could almost hear the disappointment that there wouldn’t be a big market team like the Mets…

Some rather unusual plush toys

A while ago, I pointed out some cool plush toys depicting giant microbes. Apparently, though, urologists and colorectal surgeons want in on the action. Are you ready for…Pee & Poo?

Homeopathy deconstructed in the FASEB Journal

Well, this is encouraging to see: A scientific journal publishing an article debunking pseudoscience, in this case the pseudoscience of homeopathy. (Grrrlscientist might object to the use of Hogwarts in the title, in essence comparing homeopathy to the wizardry of Harry Potter’s world. So would I, actually. Such a comparison is an insult to Hogwarts.)…

Greatest baseball turnaround ever?

Tom Verducci makes the case that the greated reversal in baseball history has just occurred with the Tigers making the World Series. Although they didn’t have the worst record of any World Series team in the season before they reached the World Series (that “honor” belongs to the the 1991 Atlanta Braves), they had the…

Richard Dawkins on the Colbert report

Enjoy! Or you can go to Richard Dawkins’ website to see it.

Due to long delays because of rain on the East Coast that resulted in an air traffic delay and a lot of hanging out for hours at O’Hare airport waiting for the delay to be lifted, I never managed to write anything for today. (I was tempted to spend the $6.95 for wireless while waiting…

While I’m on a roll fisking….

…check out Ed Brayton’s masterful fisking of some truly awful anti-evolution “arguments.” Note especially the way that the two bloggers who run the site, when faced with criticisms of their mangling of facts and attributing “holes” in evolutionary theory that really aren’t, simply repeat the same fallacious arguments again and again in the comments and…

It seems like only yesterday that I was fisking yet another piece of seriously irritating woo from that expert purveyor of woo, Deepak Chopra. In fact, it was only yesterday that I was fisking part two of Chopra’s woo-filled The Trouble With Genes series. As I mentioned in my previous fisking, I had thought that…

Mourn, punk rock fans…

Last night, Patti Smith performed the final concert (see here as well) at punk rock Mecca CBGB. Today, they are planning on beginning to dismantle the club. The club’s demise was the result of a prolonged landlord-tenant dispute, and the landlord declined to renew the lease. Many bands that I grew up to love, like…

The Trouble with Deepak Chopra, Part 2

Alright, I’ll come right out and admit it up front. There was no part one to this piece. Well, there was, but it wasn’t on this blog, and I didn’t write it. PZ did in response to some really idiotic arguments from ignorance that Deepak Chopra (or, less pleasing to Dr. C, here) displayed as…

While I’m on the topic of tacky design in a Christian website, what about tacky religious art? Everyone knows that He comes in many guises. One in particular that interests me as a surgeon is this one: As a surgeon, I’d have to hope that Jesus is somehow completely sterile, because he’s contaminating the surgical…

Accept Jesus, Forever Forgiven?

Accept Jesus, Forever Forgiven? Maybe, but I suspect that even the most devout Christian would doubt whethere even Jesus Himself would see fit to forgive the headache- and seizure-inducing design of the front page of this particular Christian site. Don’t come complaining to me if you need to lie down and take some aspirin after…

Has hell frozen over?

…Because the Tigers are actually going to the World Series! And they did it in fine style, too, with a come-from-behind victory in which Magglio Ordonez hit a three run homer with two out in the bottom of the ninth inning. I have to confess, I never quite believed they could get this far, particularly…

Fonts from hell

Admit it. We’re probably all guilty of this at one time or another. Come on, ‘fess up. You’ve done it too. I bet at some point in your life you’ve used one of The 7 Worst Fonts. Especially Comic Sans MS. Even I’ve used that font a couple of times. Does anyone else have suggestions…

Here we go again. The “scientists” at the Discovery Institute seldom miss an opportunity to shoot themselves in the foot by making specious arguments that anyone with a reasonable understanding of evolution can shoot down. It doesn’t take an evolutionary biologist to thoroughly dismantle most of the “scholarship” that flows from the DI (which is…

Yes! The Tigers just won their third game in a row against Oakland! They now have a commanding lead in the series of 3 games to none. One more win, and they’re in the World Series for the first time since 1984! You know, although I expressed skepticism about the Tigers’ chances earlier in the…