The Scientific Activist

Archives for February, 2008

It’s difficult to find too many substantive policy differences between Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton (especially considering the much larger gulf that exists between them and the Republican candidates), but one area that’s brought up time and time again is health care. In light of this, it’s worth taking a look at how much the…

The Royal Institution, in conjunction with Nature Network, is sponsoring a program on science blogging this Thursday (28 February): Blogging science Dr Ben Goldacre, Dr Jennifer Rohn, Ed Yong Thursday 28 February 2008 7.00pm-8.30pm What is it like to work in a lab? What’s the latest science news? How can you tell good science from…

Two weeks before what could be a decisive Texas primary, Barack Obama picked up the endorsement Monday of Congressman Chet Edwards, whose district includes Texas A&M University, the George H.W. Bush Presidential Library, and George W. Bush’s Crawford ranch. I’m not going to go so far as to say that I called this one, but…

Valinetines: Valentines for Scientists

Two years ago, The Scientific Activist introduced the world to valinetines, scientifically-themed valentines named after the amino acid valine. Last year, I recycled the same valinetines from the first year, but today–on this Valentine’s Day 2008–I bring you all new material: Your nuclear pore Is far from a bore: Let anyone in And then beg…

Yesterday, Barack Obama won all three contests (Maryland, Virginia, and DC) in the “Potomac Primary”, all by sizable margins. This means that he has won all eight contests that have occurred since Super Tuesday. He now leads the delegate race–even when superdelegates are included–and he maintains an incredible amount of momentum going into the February…

The New York Times reported yesterday that “scientists find new receptor for HIV,” referring to a paper published online in Nature Immunology on Sunday by Arthos et al. This is basically correct, although it would be more accurate to call the new receptor a co-receptor, since the infection of a cell with HIV still depends…

Call for Valinetines!

As the Holiday That Will Not Be Named approaches rapidly, I have a little request for my readers and the blogosphere at large. Two years ago, The Scientific Activist introduced the blogosphere to valinetines, scientifically-themed valentines named after the amino acid valine. Here’s a classic example from my friend Josh Siepel: You’ve wounded me, dear;…

Obamamentum

Barack Obama swept all three Democratic contests yesterday, winning the popular vote convincingly in Louisiana (57-36), Washington (68-31), and Nebraska (68-32). In case there were still any doubts about his broad appeal, for the record that’s a largely African-American Southern state (Louisiana), a white progressive West Coast state (Washington), and a white conservative red state…

When I first arrived in Oxford, about two and a half years ago, I found myself face to face with a very vocal and determined animal rights movement. Thriving on misinformation and intimidation–through their visible rallies and underhanded techniques of arson, grave robbing, and constant threats–they had stalled construction on Oxford’s new animal research building…

The Guardian reports today that Rowan Williams, the Archbishop of Canterbury, raised eyebrows last night when he suggested that the UK ought to recognize sharia law. Sharia law, or Islamic law, forms the basis of the legal systems in Islamic theocracies, but is often practiced informally within other societies, particularly on matters such as marriage…