Science & Society

ABC News recently suspended Brian Ross (four weeks without pay) for fabricating an unsubstantiated story that matched his ideological beliefs about Republicans and President Donald Trump and which caused the Dow Jones Industrial Average to plummet. This was not the first time he had turned his wishful thinking into action, he also blamed the Aurora, Colorado shooting on the Tea Party. It was, however, the first time ABC instituted some accountability for his work.

Once more many people are getting scared as a result of the recent North Korea test which puts the whole of the US in range.  The headlines say it puts all of US in range. You have to read carefully to discover it was probably a lightweight mock warhead. The way over hyped news stories about North Korea scare vulnerable young children and adults. So I write this to help put it in perspective. Also to explain why there is no way North Korea want to attack the US with a nuclear weapon. Nor does the US have any military options involving an invasion of North Korea, and both sides know that.

Up goer five is a game where you try to explain a hard idea in simple words. I am even writing this part using only the most often used words. Even a idea for how it all works. Even the word "theory" is not in the list of the 1000 most common words, nor are energy, or momentum, but force is.
Since writing on intelligence and race, many who know me and that I am capable of Aspergerian levels of critical thought, such as the boss of Science2.0, cannot understand how I, the quantum relativist unforgiving of any simplification, can be suddenly so naïve as to, for instance when discussing IQ, neglect different kinds of intelligence and “creativity”. Such dismissals occur in spite of, as it is relevant for this particular example of discussing intelligence, my discussing analytic-verbal versus spatial intelligence and “emotional intelligence”, and also knowing from personal experience what can be described as a “lack of creativity/critical thinking” of East Asians (I teach East Asians for 15 years, a decade in China!).

This is another silly story that is scaring people including very young children and giving them panic attacks. The claim is a fantasy story that a 'black star' (??) at the far side of the sun is going to somehow send powerful earthquakes to Earth on Sunday 19th November from a distance of over150 million miles. There is no truth to this, it's just a made up fantasy like a script for a bad movie. Not even a pseudo science explanation of how it is supposed to do it.  We are getting so many comments, posts and PM's about it in our Doomsday / Nibiru support groups on Facebook, and so far there are no news stories debunking the story properly. 

Also on China, Jews, ‘game theory paradox’, Antifa, Trump supporters, gun laws…

**Trigger Warning**

To see the problem try a google news search for Planet X - and see if you find anything there about the genuine astronomical search for planets beyond Neptune. It's filled with stories saying that the nonsense planet Nibiru is about to fly past Earth or hit us (what professor Brian Cox once called the imaginary bullshit planet Nibiru).

Physics Today says the culture of physics itself is to blame for the gender pay gap.  
Today, the American Society of Crime Laboratory Directors issued a an urgent public alert regarding the dangers posed by drugs currently circulating America’s streets and neighborhoods as a result of the current opioid crisis.   This alert is intended to help the public recognize and avoid suspicious materials when they are nearby.

“The threat is unprecedented,” warns ASCLD President Ray Wickenheiser. “Some of the clandestine substances being sold or made accessible have formulations that are so toxic that it’s better to consider them poison.”

I've been writing Doomsday Debunking articles for a couple of years now. The amount of fake news about the end of the world on the web is incredible. What makes it worse is that stories that say the world is about to end get widely shared, linked to, read over and over, and rise right to the top of Google and Apple news. If you are intrigued by a news story about the search for "planet X" by astronomers, say, and go to Google News, the top result is usually one or other article from the Daily Express who regularly publish fake news saying that an extra planet is about to hit Earth or fly past Earth in the next week or month.This is followed by pages and pages of search results consisting almost entirely of "news" in a similar vein.