Michael Shermer and the Richard Dawkins Foundation for Reason and Science have produced a "Balony Detection Kit" video (inspired, of course, by Carl Sagan's concept). It's a nice, short, accessible explanation of how the scientific method, peer review, and critical thinking work.
June 23, 2009
As the healthcare debate rages on, I thought I'd post this little gem about how private insurance companies (that's right - free market, people) retroactively revoke polices to avoid paying for expensive conditions.
Despicable. The only reason I have health insurance is for catastrophic care. I eat well, excercise, have never smoked, never ingested ANY illegal substances, and as long as my allergies are kept in check (with a $14.99 / year over-the-counter medication), I don't have need to seek medical attention.
If I were then to get cancer or suffer some sort of trauma due to an accident, my insurer can cancel my policy because I didn't remember knee pain I had when I was 14 years old?
For a potentially life-threatening disease, isn't that the same as a death sentence; meted out by our 'sacred' private industry?
Here's a quote that demonstrates the crux of the story:
"Rep. Bart Stupak (D-MI), who chaired the hearing, asked all three [Insurance Industry] CEOs if they would agree to stop rescinding policies except in cases of fraud.
All three said no.
If they don't do something to stop it, said Barton of Texas, Congress will."
I think I'll take my chances with a government bureaucrat.
April 28, 2009
Why do the EVP voices always say 'scary' ghosty things? How come they never say "Man, I could go for beer right about now!" or "I miss Twinkies!"?
Of course, considering how auditory pareidolia works, they're probably just mis-hearing what those crazy EVP spirits are really saying and in fact thay are saying things like "Could somebody please play the new Dylan CD?".
April 27, 2009
Warning: This video from Australia's current affairs show "Sunday Night" is difficult to watch. Actually, it's excruciating. But watch it anyway, especially if you think there is any merit at all to the claims made by the likes of Jenny McCarthy.
Direct link to video here.
April 24, 2009
TFN Insider has more.
April 23, 2009
EC presents a legal skewering of ICR's filing.
Why, oh why does the ICR feel the need to locate its headquarters here in my neck-of-the-woods?
And how did that ICR guy pass the state Bar Exam?
Having said that, it should come as no surprise that I am not terribly familiar with the content on the Huffington Post. I thought it was just a 'liberal' Democratic-leaning hang-out spewing the typical partisan trash that has become the norm these days. Thus, it was quite a surprise to me to discover that the Post is apparently a haven for nut-job pseudoscience quacks. Here are a few examples:
Antibiotics Cause Cancer
Anti-Vaccination Nonsense - (also here and here -- and that's just a small sample)
Intuitive Scanning for Health (Really??? REALLY?????)
While I am surprised to find this stuff in such a place as the Huffington Post, I suppose I shouldn't be surprised that people buy into this modern snake oil.
After all, Peter Popoff is back in business.