Science & Society

Nobody who ran this story even bothered to glance at a sky chart. The false claim is that the sun, moon and Jupiter will all be in Virgo on April 23. So what you might say? Well the end of the world apparently?! But actually none of them will be in that constellation, not only that, no other planet will be passing "in" Virgo on that date either.

It’s a good way of locating some of the news sources that have no systems in place to filter out fake doomsdays.  They just went

copy / paste / publish

March For Science, an offshoot of Women's March, gave itself a positive name in 2017 but its motivations were not about science at all. It was about social authoritarianism and promoting a political agenda. And at the top of that agenda was being anti-Trump in much the same way the same groups eight and 12 and 16 years earlier were ant-Bush.

But things may be different in 2018. A lot of the more culturally militant people have quit or been (ironically) marginalized because the science community sees the real opportunity for gain - if they can apply pressure while also being part of a solution.

A lot less of this stuff from 2017


Given the political demographic of the webzine Alternet and its anti-science mentality, it's not a huge surprise that its contributors are in common cause with the Russians and others who are merchants of doubt about American science and medicine.

What is shocking is that Alternet displays them so prominently. 
The Justice Department has said that ending the flow of illegal opioids in the U.S. is a top law-enforcement priority but the U.S. Food and Drug Administration doesn't want to wait years for courts to help, they are directly calling on the public to pressure sites like Google, Facebook, and Twitter to put a crimp on supplement and opioid sales.

At the National Rx Drug Abuse and Heroin Summit, FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb called on social media companies and internet companies to stop taking money for ads. Good luck with that. What he was really seeking is public help in pressuring them. Facebook and Twitter have repeatedly shown they are modern-day arms dealers and happily sell to both sides, so only the public can put the needed pressure on them.

Ben Shapiro and others often cite a UCLA study which claimed that 45% of transwomen try to commit suicide to “prove” that transgender people are mentally ill and that we should not reinforce their “delusion”.   A big problem with their line of reasoning is that  they generalize a single survey based on a self-selected convenience sample to a whole population.  One could dismiss that as some kind of pseudo intellectual argument based on feelings and facts don’t care about feelings. 

This is an article in New Scientist that’s being shared in social media which says it's a new caclulation of the future of the Universe according to the theory of false vacuum. It’s scaring many people because when you read it as far as it goes, before you have to pay to read, it doesn’t give a timeline, so they think it could happen any moment. Also, because it says “there’s a chance” that it has already collapsed in a distant corner of the cosmos. I'm writing this as part of a series of posts to help people scared of false or exaggerated doomsdays, which often get to the top of Google, Apple News and Facebook trending and are read by many people who have no idea how to take them including children as young as 14 and sometimes much younger.

Trigger Warning [general trigger warning]: My analysis of the current situation is deeply concerning, but there is some hope. As an autistic abnormal of that kind, I try perfecting consistency in my interpretations, insisting on self-critical scientific method – also in all of the following. However:
Large amounts of ink (well, electrons) have been spilt over the web in the past few months to discuss the #MeToo movement. It seems this blog will eventually join the crowd, although a bit belatedly, and with a slightly different viewing angle. 
After keeping silent on the matter, I am stimulated to discuss it after a BuzzFeed article exposed several cases of alleged sexual harassment and related inappropriate behavior by world-class cosmologist-cum-science-pop-guy-cum-skeptic Lawrence Krauss. Plus, yesterday was international women's day, and I never miss a chance to miss a deadline.

Well, to everyone’s surprise, it seems that Trump and Kim are going to meet. So this is no longer a hypothetical question. (This originates as my answer on Quora to: What would happen if Kim Jong Un and Donald Trump could meet and talk to resolve the tension over North Korea?)

So first, this is good news. Whatever comes of it, it's major progress that



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