Respectful Insolence

Archives for December, 2008

Yesterday, I commented on the tragic death of HIV/AIDS denialist Christine Maggiore, who was HIV-positive herself and refused to use antiretroviral drugs during her pregnancy to prevent maternal-fetal transmission of the virus and insisted on breast feeding even though the virus can be transmitted to the baby through breast milk. Her cultish clinging to the…

I know, I know, I’ve criticized P.Z. Myer’s poll-crashing proclivities as being childish and pointless. However, so few people seem to agree with my take on it that I’m wondering whether, if I can’t beat ‘em I should join ‘em. So let’s try it out. On the Obama Transition Team website, Generation Rescue has put…

I’m not worthy, I’m not worthy!

Now here’s something that’ll go to Orac’s head (if, in fact, he actually had a head instead of a Plexiglass cube of blinking colored lights). He’s been named by Rebecca Watson (a.k.a. The Skepchick) as one of the Top 10 Skeptics Who Kicked Ass in 2008! I’m tellin’ ya, to be included in a list…

What does an anti-Semite look like…

…who needs a lot of practice still? I would say he might look like this. I still have to figure out what Zionist juice is, though.

HIV/AIDS denialist Christine Maggiore is dead

Longtime readers of this blog may remember the case of Eliza Jane Scovill. For newbies and those who might not remember, I’ve copiously linked to posts written by me and others. To boil it all down, three years ago a child named Eliza Jane Scovill (often called EJ) died tragically three years ago of Pneumocystis…

Here’s one for our favorite creationist neurosurgeon: A whole Grand Rounds all about the interface of and application to medicine of the theory of evolution.

Last week, I gave everybody’s favorite creationist neurosurgeon, Dr. Michael Egnor, the gift everyone loves to read but not to receive: the gift of not-so-Respectful Insolence. Christmas or no Christmas, he did ask for it, and far be it from me, given my benevolent nature, not to respond to his plaintiff plea with a resounding…

I’ve been meaning to write about this topic for quite a while but never really found a reason to. Indeed, this one’s been floating around in the back of my mind for a long time. Perhaps one reason is that it’s hard for a surgeon to write about this topic without coming off sounding like…

Lose, Lions, lose

I rarely blog about sports, but I’ll make an exception for today, given that football history is likely to be made later this afternoon. I’m not much of a football fan, at least not of professional football. These days, the games take even longer than a baseball game and all too often lack the excitement…

Racist? Yes or no? Vote!

An oddly racist commercial, or just bizarre? You be the judge: Oddly Racist Commercial – watch more funny videos

…more not-so-Respectful Insolence, courtesy not of Orac this time but of other skeptical physician-bloggers! Enjoy: Smackdown, please (yes, Egnor, I’m talking to you) (by blog bud PalMD) Defending science-based medicine (by skeptical neurologist Dr. Steve Novella, who’s been known to spar a bit with Dr. Egnor himself over evolution and neuroscience) Egnorance is Bliss (by…

The price of anti-vaccine fanaticism

Welcome back. I hope you and yours who celebrate Christmas have had a happy one. Ours was kind of mixed and bittersweet for reasons that I don’t particularly feel like going into now, although sooner or later I will probably have to say something about it. In the meantime, as much as I hate to…

Merry Christmas! And sock it to the holidays!

To wish you happy holidays, here’s a perfect carol to sum up the pile of crap that was the latter half of 2008: I had never heard of the Loomis Agency before, but it must not be doing too bad if it has the excess money to produce this. Either that, or its workers don’t…

The joy of Christmas, take 4: Scared for Santa

Continued from Christmas last year… Well, if I were Santa, I’d be scared too if this guy sat on my lap: You didn’t think Christmas could pass without our old friend making an appearance, did you? Yes, our blog mascot can be a bit scary at times to those who have not met him before,…

It’s Christmas Eve. I know, I know, it’s all supposed to be Peace On Earth, Good Will Towards Men (and Women), and all that jazz. Really, that’s exactly what I had intended for today and tomorrow. Indeed, my plan was to do nothing more than a quickie post today and a maybe a couple of…

“Licensing” faith healers?

Of all the forms of quackery out there, the “energy healing” methods and “faith healing” methods have to be the most ridiculous. After all, the claims of “healers” using such modalities, when boiled down to their very essence, are nothing less (and nothing more) than claiming the ability to do magic. Indeed, “energy healing” involves…

Run, don’t walk, away from these Doctors

I’m happy to say, I’ve never watched an episode of The Doctors, at least if the episode segment I’ve just been sent is any indication of the quality of the science and medicine discussed on the TV show. The episode, which aired on December 11, featured a segment on autism featuring an old “friend” of…

The zombie has arisen once again to eat the brains of the Air Force. I’m referring to so-called “battlefield acupuncture,” a topic that I wrote about last week for this very blog. I didn’t think there’d be a reason to revisit the subject again so soon, but I was wrong for three reasons. First, I…

Two actors and their woo

Why does anyone listen to actors when they pontificate about health and medical issues? Think about it. What is it that actors do? They read lines given to them. True, some have a talent that goes beyond that; they can actually write or direct. But few of them have any more abilities when it comes…

Did Larry King learn his lesson?

As much as I’d love to take credit, the postponement of the appearance of Jenny McCarthy and J.B. Handley on Larry King Live! originally scheduled for last night had nothing to do with me. Really. The cancellation was apparently announced shortly after my post appeared, leaving no time for it to have had an effect.…

Good media, bad media

The other day, I had a bit of fun with an “old friend,” namely J. B. Handley, founder of the antivaccine organization Generation Rescue and now third banana on the antivaccine front to Jenny McCarthy and her boy-toy Jim Carrey. Displeased at my little jabs, he showed up in the comments spewing his usual antivaccine…

I’m a connoisseur of woo. It’s true. Back when I first started blogging, I came across outrageous bits of pseudoscience such as the ones I feature periodically on Your Friday Dose of Woo, and I wasn’t sure quite what to do with them. Indeed, I had a hard time deciding if some of them were…

‘Tis a bittersweet moment. On the one hand, I am happy that the 102nd Meeting of the Skeptics’ Circle has landed over at Bing McGhandi’s place. Not only is it chock full of excellent skeptical blogging, but the story is amusing, as evidenced by this little taste: BM: Next, Orac from Respectful Insolence has sent…

You may have noticed that I’ve been laying off the antivaccination movement recently. Indeed, it’s been over two weeks since I last mentioned the topic, and then I only did so by briefly citing a post by Steve Novella. For this blog, aside from vacations, that has to be a record. Truth be told, periodically…

What really happened in Iraq the other day…

I had always suspected that this is what was really going on: Actually, it would have been a lot more fun if this had been what really happened.