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Links With Your Coffee - Sunday

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Wouldn't it be nice if you could get some good science reporting in the MSM, with a few exceptions it's mostly junk. Now I learn that contrary to the reporting in the Observer they really had no evidence that omega3 did anything to improve the concentration of school children. Ben Goldacre after considerable effort, the author of the article was reluctant to tell him what the source was, got the details and found the author Denis Campbell is not very good at his job. Until you have peer reviewed studies in reputable publication remain a little bit skeptical, and maybe save the money you were going to spend for high doses of fish oil for another day.

Yesterday the UK parliament heard that studies at the University of Texas have shown that homeopathic remedies kill cancer cells while leaving normal cells intact.

The revelation came from David Tredinnick, who continues to use his position as a public representative to argue for more NHS spending on complementary and alternative medicines.

To my mind, the fact that this study was mentioned in parliament, and the statement that homeopathy can kill cancer cells is now a matter of public record, is a spectacular failure. But it is not a failure of politics or politicians: it is a failure of science.

Wherein Cory Doctorow gets phished


 

Comments

Norm- I realize you don't have much control over the ads that appear on your site, but, just FYI, this morning there's a CafePress ad featuring an anti-Obamacare button showing Obama in what's pretty obviously blackface. Astonishing the shit that comes out of people.

In and of itself, peer review is not the problem. The problem is the proliferation of journals and papers that almost nobody reads and in which there are too many papers to adequately review. In a joke he attributes to Rudolph Peierls, N. D. Mermin wrote:

An extrapolation of its present rate of growth reveals that in the not too distant future Physical Review will fill bookshelves at a speed exceeding that of the speed of light. This is not forbidden by relativity, since no information is being conveyed.

Fortunately, we now have electronic publishing that will allow us to fill hard drives and other electronic media faster than bookshelves.

For "God hates showoffs" - thank you; I now have something to give to street preachers.

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