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Links With Your Coffee - Thursday


In the interest of fostering rational arguments I'm going to present a common fallacy with each day's links. Today's fallacy is: Insignificant

  • BBC NEWS | Programmes | Newsnight | Remembering Updike: Ian McEwan

    Ian captures exactly what is was that made Updike so good. A very nice tribute.

  • Respectful Insolence: Can we finally just say that acupuncture is nothing more than an elaborate placebo? Can we?
    The reason I ask this question is because yet another large meta-analysis has been released that is entirely consistent with the hypothesis that acupuncture is a placebo.

  • Cheap, super-efficient LED lights on the horizon - tech - 29 January 2009 - New Scientist
    Incandescent tungsten-filament light bulbs face a global switch-off as governments push for energy efficient fluorescent lamps to become the standard. But the light could soon go out on those lamps too, now that UK materials scientists have discovered a cheaper way to produce LED bulbs, which are three times as efficient as fluorescent lamps.

  • Heal Spiel: Response to Anti-Vaccination Parent

    A thoughtful thorough fisking of the anti-vacinnation argument

  • Your brain on fiction: we simulate action we read in narrative - Boing Boing
    A forthcoming journal article in Psychological Science reports on the research of scientists from the Dynamic Cognition Laboratory at Washington University in St. Louis into what brain activity takes place while we read narrative stories. The study concludes that our brains simulate the action in the story, echoing it as we read.

  • Starbucks Eliminates Coffee, Cups, Stir-thingies - Borowitz Report

  • Dyer: Obama looks ready to turn Afghanistan into Vietnam
    You aren't really the U.S. president until you've ordered an air strike on somebody, so Barack Obama is certainly president now: two in his first week in office. But now that he has been blooded, can we talk a little about this expanded war he's planning to fight in Afghanistan?

    Does that sound harsh? Well, so is killing people, and all the more so because Obama must know that these remote-controlled Predator strikes usually kill not just the "bad guy," whoever he is, but also the entire family he has taken shelter with. It also annoys Pakistan, whose territory the United States violated in order to carry out the killings. President Obama may be planning to shut Guantanamo, but the broader concept of a "war on terror" is still alive and well in Washington. Most of the people he has appointed to run his defense and foreign policies believe in it, and there is no sign that he himself questions it. Yet even 15 years ago the notion would have been treated with contempt in every military staff college in the country.

    That generation of American officers learned two things from their miserable experience in Vietnam. One was that going halfway around the world to fight a conventional military campaign against an ideology (Communism then, Islamism now) was a truly stupid idea. The other was that no matter how strenuously the other side insists that it is motivated by a world-spanning ideology, its real motives are mostly political and quite local . .

  • Charles is writing on health care around the world here, here and here.



norm, you're doing a big mitzvah posting those vaccination articles. i'm finding them very helpful, especially the fact that they are current, and i'd probably never find them on my own. and i can't read as fast as you, so separating wheat from chaff is tough for me. thanks.

Are you trying to persuade the X to vaccinate the kids? Good luck.

yes i am. thanks.


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