News From Around The Blogosphere 10.14.10

October 15, 2010

1. Faith healing couple loses custody of baby

I was disturbed to read about the Oregon couple who did not seek professional medical attention for their 10-month-old baby because of their faith healing practice. Their baby is now facing blindness in one eye.

The Oregon Department of Human Services won custody yesterday of little Alayna Wayland. Her parents, Timothy and Rebecca Wyland, have been charged with first degree criminal mistreatment for failing to provide adequate care according to CBS News.

Another child is safe from the harm of religion.

2. FDA warns 8 companies to stop marketing miracle cures – There are depressingly several companies the FDA caught selling sham treatments for autism and Parkinson’s disease, among other conditions through chelation therapies only intended to remove toxic metals from the body. These treatments are not only fraudulent but also dangerous, as they are capable of causing dehydration, kidney failure and even death.

“These products are dangerously misleading because they are targeted to patients with serious conditions and limited treatment options,” said FDA’s Deborah Autor, director of compliance. “The FDA must take a firm stand against companies who prey on the vulnerability of patients seeking hope and relief.”

If the companies do not comply immediately, they will face legal action.

3. Rachel Maddow reports on Conservaepedia’s project to rewrite the Bible:

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News From Around The Blogosphere 8.10.10

August 10, 2010

1. Einsteinian physics an evil liberal plot? – That is according to Andy Schlafly of Conservapædia. I suspect this is all part of a Jewish plot. Step 1: Kill Jesus and save the world. Step 2: Fool otherwise good Christians into accepting demonic Relativity. Step 4:  Profit. Muhahaha!

2. Anne Rice’s departure from the Catholic Church may signal the beginning of the end – Former Christian William Lobdell looks at the statistics and it’s looking more and more like Anne Rice is just part of a growing number of Christians growing disillusioned with organized religion.

3. Wiccans offer low, low price for booty-enhancement spell casting – Now I know there’s no such thing as magic, but for only $8.95, how can I afford not to pay someone to chant magic spells to increase the size of my ass. This one is full of win.I just don’t want to know where the magic wand goes.

4. Thought-controlled artificial arm reaches human testing phase – DARPA may have successfully produced an artificial arm as good as the one Anakin had in the Star Wars prequels.

5. Another Catholic child abuse case determined to be ‘credible’

A review board for the Catholic Diocese of Pittsburgh has found allegations of child sexual abuse against the Rev. David Dzermejko “credible,” and Bishop David Zubik has sent the case to Rome.

Vatican officials will decide if he should have a church trial or if the evidence is strong enough to permanently remove him from ministry without further hearings.

Wow, that’s some justice system they got going on there.

6. Pastor arrested for anti-demon protest – Pastor Donald Crosby of Kingdom Builders Church of Jesus Christ decided to protest outside Warner Robins High School because of the school’s “”Demon” nickname and mascot.” The mascot honors a World War II fighter squadron nicknamed the “Screamin’ Demons.” Yes, he’s protesting a celebration of World War II American heroes.

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News From Around The Blogosphere 9.15.08

September 16, 2008

This day in history: Sept. 15, 1835 – Charles Darwin arrived in the Galapágos Islands on the HMS Beagle

John McCain (who I loved in Die Hard) finally gets around to answering those Science Debate 2008 questions – You can compare them to Obama’s.


RELIGION NEWS:

Britain being invaded by creationists

Born Again: The Documentary – It’s a documentary by filmmaker Markie Hancock about her evangelical Christian life and her decades-long attempt to leave it. It’s 90-minutes and I haven’t seen it yet.

The Pope calling the kettle black – Ratzinger’s criticizing other people for having too much money and possessions? Are you freakin’ kidding me?!


ATHEISM NEWS:

Andy Welfie shares his deconversion story – A journey from home-schooled Catholic to atheism.

It’s all fun and games until somebody loses an eye – “A man who threatened to behead two women because they were Christians was attacked in self-defense early Saturday and injured so severely, police say, that his eye was to be removed.” The man, Russell Bowman, allegedly calls himself an atheist.

Conservapædia’s honest and totally in no way biased article on PZ Myers – Another lame example of wikiganda.

Greta Christina’s Top 10 Reasons She Doesn’t Believe In God part 1– And for a detailed explanation of my views on the subject, see my very first blog entry on this site.

Another look at postmodernist attacks on science-based medicine

The Atheon, a “Temple of Science,” coming to Berkeley

World’s largest study of near-death experiences to start

AND NOW FOR A MOMENT OF SCIENCE:

Giant Honeybees Do ‘The Wave’ To Repel Wasps – “The phenomenon of “shimmering” in giant honeybees, in which hundreds—or even thousands—of individual honeybees flip their abdomens upwards within a split-second to produce a Mexican Wave-like pattern across the bee nest, has received much interest but both its precise mode of action and its purpose have long remained a mystery.”


News From Around The Blogosphere 9.13.08

September 14, 2008

LEGAL NEWS:

Woo v. Woo – JZ Knight, a New Age charlatan who claims to “channel” a 35,000 year old Atlantean warrior named Ramtha is suing a former student because she dared to cut in on Knight’s action based on Ramtha’s advice. As PZ Myers says:

“The only thing that could make the trial sillier is if the court put Ramtha on the witness stand.”

And here’s a very telling excerpt from the article:

Knight’s attorneys claim Weaver copied seven school processes, including Fieldwork, an exercise designed to improve ability to focus attention and intuition by finding a symbolic card on a fence while blindfolded.

“Is Pin the Tail on the Donkey focused attention?” Spellman asked Wright.

“It could be,” Wright replied.

“So, then is it Fieldwork?” Spellman said.

“No, it’s Pin the Tail on the Donkey,” Wright said.

And then this:

Kilborne, on cross-examination, was not impressed.

“Isn’t it the flat truth that there is no Ramtha?” he asked.

“That is incorrect,” said Knight, who hosted a conference of scientists at her school to investigate the Ramtha phenomenon. “And science proved in 1997 that Ramtha was not me.”

I knew they had to update those science textbooks!

Woo settles in Woo v. Ben Goldacre – Alt. Med. quack Matthias Rath sued Goldacre for libel and the case has finally settled in Goldacre’s favor. Suck it, Rath!

Strike 3 for Andy Schlafly of Conservapædia (not to be confused with that evil, anti-creationist biased Wikipedia) – Twice before, Schlafly has received a sufficient intellectual beating in his crusade against to find some argument to use against Richard Lensky’s irrefutable proof for Evolution, but like a good masochist, Schlafly had to come back for yet another pounding . . . which the Editorial Board was happy to give him.

Play the Sarah Palin Baby Name Generator – What would your name be had you been born to Sarah Palin?

Was the Large Hadron Collider worth all that money?

How much tuna is too much in one week? – As many of you know, canned tuna contains mercury, which in large quantities can be very dangerous. This article elaborates on how much tuna individuals can consume in a week to avoid going beyond the safe levels of mercury. I also really enjoyed this comment from one of the blog’s readers:

“An aside about heavy metals in food: According to ‘The Elements of Murder – A History of Poison‘ by John Emsley, we accumulate so much mercury in our bodies from our environment, that, by most world nutritional regulations for the amount of mercury allowable in meat for consumption, one in every ten people would be unsuitable as food for cannibals.”

So maybe exceeding the safe levels of mercury consumption will 1 day save your life.

In yet another beautiful piece of the pot calling the kettle black, after years of attacting Dr. Paul Offit’s character and making baseless conspirac accusatons about him, anti-vaxxeers Age of Autism chastize Offit for addressing Robert Kennedy Jr.’s criminal record (presumably in addition to refuting Kennedy’s claims though AoA would have us believe that Offit only attacks Kennedy’s character and not his claims). Oddly, now they’ve decided to pretend they’ve been fair to Offit all along while attacking his character as they deny having attacked his characer. Now that’s impressive.

Age of Autism is also promoting “Autism File Magazine,” praising it for it’s experts and advocates from around the world. So if they’re praising it, that can only mean 1 thing, that “the experts” who run the rag embrace the vaccine myth. If it didn’t, AoA would be attacking it as viciously as they do Paul Offit, Barack Obama, Amanda Peet, every medical study that’s ever proven them wrong, and anyone who publically disagrees with them.

AND NOW FOR A MOMENT OF SCIENCE:

Miscalculation In Geological Record Uncovered – “The precise timing of the origin of life on Earth and the changes in life during the past 4.5 billion years has been a subject of great controversy for the past century . . . It appears that records related to carbonate platforms which are often used throughout the early history of the Earth are not good recorders of the 13C/12C ratio in the open oceans. Hence, the work presented suggests that assumptions made previously about changes in the 13C/12C ratios of carbonate sediments in the geological record are incorrect.” Even though science once again proves itself to be self-correcting, non-authoritative, and able change its conclusions when shown new evidence, I expect creationists will falsely trumpet this story as further proof of the evil scientist conspiracy to deny god.

DNA ‘Tattoos’ Link Adult, Daughter Stem Cells – “Using the molecular equivalent of a tattoo on DNA that adult stem cells (ASC) pass to their “daughter” cells in combination with gene expression profiles, University of Utah researchers have identified two early steps in adult stem cell differentiation—the process that determines whether cells will form muscle, neurons, skin, etc., in people and animals.”