Respectful Insolence

Archives for May, 2007

Another enemy of the Hitler Zombie

Via Ed Brayton, I’ve learned of an interesting commentary by Sasha Abramsky on a topic that’s near and dear to my heart. Well, its’ more like a major pet peeve, one that irritates me so much that two years ago I even created a character who’s made regular, albeit increasingly infrequent, appearances on this blog.…

The mercury militia go to court

I’ve been a bit remiss when it comes to writing about the lunacy in which it is claimed that vaccines cause autism, allegedly due to the mercury in the thimerosal preservative that was in most childhood vaccines until the end of 2002, when it was removed from all but flu vaccines. It turns out that…

Here it is, straight from the 365 Stupidest Things Ever Said calendar, culled from a church bulletin listing: Our youth basketball team is back in action Wednesday at 8 PM in the recreation hall. Come out and watch us kill Christ the King. My question upon seeing such a notice would, of course, be: Is…

I love it. You see I noticed an old “friend,” the Herbinator, making this comment about me regarding dichloroacetate: I was listening to CBC Radio – the Current, as is my want, and there was a show on about DCA, or Dichloroacetic acid. DCA is a molecule so simple and cheap to make that drug…

The Tripoli Six revisited

Last fall, I and quite a few other bloggers wrote about the Tripoli Six. These are six foreign medical workers arrested for allegedly intentionally infecting over 400 children with HIV in a Libyan hospital and, thanks to the ignorant hysteria whipped up against them and the need of the Libyan government to find scapegoats for…

Musical Male Humpbacks Score More Gals!

“Some people call me Maurice.” Humpback whale, Megaptera novaeangliae A study from two Australian researchers from the University of Sydney shows that male humpbacks who sing while migrating have better luck with the ladies than those who don’t. Michael Noad and a group of colleagues tracked a population of humpbacks while it migrated to its…

Vileness staining Memorial Day

This is not free speech; it’s vandalism: ORCAS ISLAND, Wash. — Vandals burned dozens of small American flags that decorated veterans’ graves for Memorial Day and replaced many of them with hand-drawn swastikas, authorities said Monday. Forty-six flag standards were found empty and another 33 flags were in charred tatters Sunday in the cemetery, authorities…

One third of Americans?

A new Gallup poll shows just how bad things are for science and reason: PRINCETON, NJ — About one-third of the American adult population believes the Bible is the actual word of God and is to be taken literally word for word. This percentage is slightly lower than several decades ago. The majority of those…

It never seems to end, does it? I’m talking about the hype and questionable practices revolving around dichloroacetate (DCA), the small molecule chemotherapeutic agent that targets the Warburg effect, in essence normalizing the metabolism of tumor cells and thereby inhibiting their growth. (See here and here for more details.) A report by Evangelos Michelakis at…

One more question on Memorial Day

I didn’t see this one in time to include it on my list of Memorial Day links. In it, Brett confesses: Here’s a confession: I don’t really get Guernica — the painting, that is, not the event. Read the whole thing and see what he means.

i think I’ve made it exquisitely clear how much I detest and despise the term “Nevile Chamberlain School of Evolutionists.” Indeed, my disgust at the term led me to sic the Hitler Zombie on (of all people) Richard Dawkins, the originator of the term, a deed that was either the boldest thing I’ve ever done…

Memorial Day

Here in the U.S, it’s Memorial Day, the day that we set aside to pay tribute to our men and women in uniform who have put their lives on the line to defend our nation in its wars. On this day, I’d like to present a few links and thoughts: Here’s my post about Memorial…

Holiday weekend carnivalia

I’ve been a bit remiss in my blog carnival plugging; so here’s my chance to make up for it. Here are some carnivals worth checking out: Carnival of Bad History #14: The Backlog Edition (The name speaks for itself.) Carnivalesque #27 (Ancient, medieval and early modern history.) Tangled Bank #80 (Science.) The Creation Museum (The…

From the sublime to the ridiculous

Recently, I discussed a story by the BBC news show Panorama about the Church of Scientology and its ridiculous anti-psychiatry museum. Unfortunately, the show doesn’t always do things right. Over at Bad Science, I find how badly Panorama messed up a story on Wi-Fi, claiming health dangers on the basis of bad science and interviews…

Over the last couple of months, I’ve written periodically about cancer research and the complaints that the present system of funding grants and of peer review stifles innovation, as well as whether ideas for which there is some evidence but which fall out of the mainstream are given a fair shake. My overall take has…

Finally, the religion for me!

I think I’ve finally found the religion for me… (Click the picture to read about the religion! Hat tip to Robster, FCD.) Moreover, in a direct comparison between Christianity and this new religion, Christianity doesn’t come off so good. (The sad thing is, I get each and every reference in this comic.) Indeed, in the…

Cicadas! I don’t think I’d have the self-control that the children pictured above do, though.

I had thought of featuring this little gem on Your Friday Dose of Woo before, but my Friday feature usually requires a bit more to go on. Well, not exactly. Rather, it requires a bit more quotable material, the better for hilarity to ensue, and this is just a book with a description and some…

I’ve been meaning to go through the recent meta-analysis of Avandia published by the New England Journal of Medicine that purported to show major increase in the risk for cardiac events (myocardial infarctions and cardiac death) in patients who use Avandia, but somehow never got around to it. I’m not sure I need to now,…

Another one bites the dust for a while?

Hot on the heals of the loss of Flea and other medical bloggers, Dr. Hébert announces without explanation other than that “I’ve had enough” and “I’ll be gone for a little while.” Cryptic indeed. I can understand why someone might quit blogging or take a hiatus. However, if I were ever to decide to do…

One of the banes of a physician’s existence is not so much keeping up with changes in how medicine is practiced, studying new treatments, and following the medical literature. After all, that comes with the territory; it’s part of the job. Failure to keep up is to become increasingly ineffective and even to risk malpractice…

Our creationist neurosurgeon, Dr. Michael Egnor, isn’t going to like this one bit. No doubt he’ll try to call it “artificial selection” or a “tautology” when he finds out about it, if he doesn’t just ignore it because he it doesn’t fit in with his view that studying evolution is “of no value” in medicine.…

In honor of Towel Day, the theme of the latest meeting of the Skeptics’ Circle is The Hitchhiking Skeptic’s Guide to the Galaxy. Join Rebecca (a.k.a. The Skepchick) as she takes you on a tour of the skeptical blogosphere. But don’t do it for me. Don’t even do it just for Rebecca. Do it for…

A number of readers have mailed me links to this story, and, yes, it is right up my alley. In reading it, I fear that it’s a vision of the future for two young cancer patients who are very unlikely to survive their cancers because their parents eschewed evidence-based medicine in favor of woo, Starchild…

You knew it was coming…

Ask yourself this: What do the convicted do, either in prison or when facing prison? They find Jesus, of course: It’s inevitable any time anyone’s going to jail, it seems. My prediction for Paris’ next stop: Kabbalah! It would, however, be even more amusing if she were to convert to Islam while in prison.