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Friday, 19 April 2019

Fatal liver failure after long-term intake of a popular and ‘time-tested’ herbal remedy

  Fructus Psoraleae is the seed of Psoralea corylifolia Linn. It is the main ingredient of the herbal mixtures such as Qubaibabuqi, popular in China, India and other countries. It has been used for medicinal purposes for millennia. Thus many proponents would claim that it must be risk-free. A recent case-report  suggests that it might not […]

Read the rest here: Fatal liver failure after long-term intake of a popular and ‘time-tested’ herbal remedy

American Loon #2176: Samuel Rodriguez

One of the more powerful figures on the religious right, Samuel Rodriguez is a fundie pastor and founder and president of the National Hispanic Christian Leadership Conference (NHCLC/CONEL), the largest Hispanic Christian Evangelical/Pentecostal organization in the world. As such, he is also a...

Read the full lunacy: #2176: Samuel Rodriguez Encyclopedia of American Loons

Thursday, 18 April 2019

Chinese acupuncture researchers have finally discovered the obvious (but sadly, without realising it)

The aim of this systematic review was to determine the efficacy of conventional treatments plus acupuncture versus conventional treatments alone for asthma, using a meta-analysis of all published randomized clinical trials (RCTs). The researchers included all RCTs in which adult and adolescent patients with asthma (age ≥12 years) were divided into conventional treatments plus acupuncture […]

Read the rest here: Chinese acupuncture researchers have finally discovered the obvious (but sadly, without realising it)

Another VERY puzzling study of homeopathy

This double-blind, randomized, placebo-controlled study was conducted at the out-patient departments of the National Institute of Homoeopathy in India. It evaluated whether individualized homeopathy (IH) could produce significant effects beyond placebo in treatment of insomnia. Sixty patients were randomized to receive either IH or placebo. Patient-administered sleep diary (6 items; 1: latency to fall asleep, 2: […]

Read the rest here: Another VERY puzzling study of homeopathy

American Loon #2175: Charles A. Rodenberger

It’s somewhat interesting to go dumpster-diving in the Discovery Institute’s ridiculous anti-evolution petition A Scientific Dissent From Darwinism, and see what you dredge up. Charles A. Rodenberger appears to be fairly typical of the signatories – at least among those who seem to...

Read the full lunacy: #2175: Charles A. Rodenberger Encyclopedia of American Loons

Wednesday, 17 April 2019

Another serious complication after chiropractic neck manipulation

The most regularly reported serious complication of chiropractic neck manipulation is a stroke due to arterial dissection. Atlantoaxial dislocation (a dislocations of the first and second vertebrae which means that the spinal cord is in danger of being compressed which, in turn, would have devastating consequences) has not been previously reported, but is just as […]

Read the rest here: Another serious complication after chiropractic neck manipulation

Tuesday, 16 April 2019

American Loon #2174: John Rocker

John Rocker is a former MLB pitcher and columnist for the WND. His main qualification seems to have been once saying that he hated New York because if you rode the NY subway you might have to sit next to a “queer with AIDS,” and because of the foreigners: “The biggest thing I don’t like about...

Read the full lunacy: #2174: John Rocker Encyclopedia of American Loons

Are anthroposophy-enthusiasts for or against vaccinations?

The ‘International Federation of Anthroposophic Medical Associations’ have just published a ‘Statement on Vaccination‘. Here it is in its full beauty: Vaccines, together with health education, hygiene and adequate nutrition, are essential tools for preventing infectious diseases. Vaccines have saved countless lives over the last century; for example, they allowed the eradication of small pox […]

Read the rest here: Are anthroposophy-enthusiasts for or against vaccinations?

Monday, 15 April 2019

Homeopathic vaccines do not evoke antibody responses

There is much propaganda for homeopathic vaccinations or homeoprophylaxis (as homeopaths like to call it, in order to give it a veneer of respectability), and on this blog we have discussed it repeatedly. The concept is unproven and dangerous. Yet it is being promoted relentlessly. Currently, I get > 12 million websites when I google […]

Read the rest here: Homeopathic vaccines do not evoke antibody responses

Sunday, 14 April 2019

2019 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming Digest #15

Story of the Week... Toon of the Week... Coming Soon on SkS... Climate Feedback Review... SkS Week in Review... Poster of the Week...

Story of the Week... 

How a Few Small Fixes Could Stop Climate Change

"We have to act fast, and achieve the biggest possible impact with the actions we take."


Small steps could make a big impact on climate change. Source: Pexels 

When thinking about new ways to tackle climate change, University of Oxford researcher Thom Wetzer first points out how a modest rise in temperature could push the Earth to a tipping point that yields dramatic climate change. A little warming, for example, could cause Arctic permafrost to melt, unleashing enough heat-trapping methane to cook the planet.

Wetzer and his colleagues turned the idea of a tipping point on its head, theorizing that small changes in policy or the development of a new technology, for instance, could lead to big, positive changes in the way we produce and consume energy. Their proposal is outlined in a paper in the journal Science.

“Climate change brings risks that will, in one way or another, impact most people’s lives — and certainly the generations that follow,” said Wetzer, a co-author. “Whether that is through extreme weather events, changes in the economy or the reactions of politicians to these climate risks. We can either put up with these risks and watch them grow out of control, or we can act to mitigate the worst impacts of climate change.”

How a Few Small Fixes Could Stop Climate Change by Marlene Cimons, Nexus Media, Apr 11, 2019

Toon of the Week...

 2019 Toon 15

Coming Soon on SkS...

[To be added] 

Climate Feedback Review...

Breitbart article baselessly claims a study of past climate invalidates human-caused climate change

Climate Feedback 16


Analysis of the article, Scientists Prove Man-Made Global Warming Is a Hoax by John Nolte, Breitbart, Apr 6, 2019

Ten scientists analyzed the article and estimated its overall scientific credibility to be ‘very low’

A majority of reviewers tagged the article as: Flawed reasoningInaccurateMisleading.

Review Summary

This Breitbart article comments on a story by ThinkProgress about a study related to past climate, mistakenly concluding that it invalidates the science that shows human activities are currently altering the climate of our planet.

Scientists who reviewed the article explain that it builds on a fallacious reasoning, as if the fact that climate has changed due to natural forcing in the past would make it impossible for human emissions of CO2 to change it now. In reality, the climate of the Earth can be influenced by various forcings, including changes in the Sun’s irradiance and atmospheric concentrations of greenhouse gases, which in turn can be due to natural causes (as has been the case in the past) or activities related to human actions—as is the case currently.

All the scientists indicated that the content of the article does not support the claim made by the headline.

Breitbart article baselessly claims a study of past climate invalidates human-caused climate change, Edited by Scott Johnson, Climate Feedback, Apr 11, 2019 

Poster of the Week...

2019 Poster 15 

SkS Week in Review... 

from Skeptical Science

American Loon #2173: Derrick Robinson & the FFCHS

Derrick Robinson is the president of Freedom from Covert Harassment and Surveillance (FFCHS). I suggest reading the name of that group again. Yes, the FFCHS is committed to fighting the use of (in particular) electromagnetic frequency (EMF) weapons (a weapons-grade version of this) ostensibly...

Read the full lunacy: #2173: Derrick Robinson & the FFCHS Encyclopedia of American Loons

Saturday, 13 April 2019

“… more research is needed …” – what does this conclusion really mean?

In recent years, I have found myself getting irritated with researchers finishing their evaluation of a so-called alternative medicine (SCAM) with the sentence ‘MORE RESEARCH IS NEEDED’ (or similar). It is irritating because it fails to draw a line under assessments of even the most hopelessly implausible treatment. And, because it leaves things open, it […]

Read the rest here: “… more research is needed …” – what does this conclusion really mean?