Category Archives: in the news

Wikipedia is an error multiplier

by Greg Mayer Close readers of WEIT will know that I rarely cite or link to Wikipedia (other than for images), and that I have occasionally promised to at some point say more about this. This won’t be a full account, but a recent spectacular example of Wikipedia’s ability to spread error has been reported […]

Cats in the “Museum of Corruption”

by Greg Mayer After security forces abandoned the Ukrainian presidential palace amidst street-fighting in Kiev, protesters seized control of the opulent mansion and its grounds (which include a zoo and a pirate-themed restaurant). The protesters, who seem well organized, did not loot the palace, but have opened the grounds for the people to tour, and […]

Why there probably isn’t a ghost ship full of cannibal rats headed for the British Isles

by Greg Mayer There’s been a lot of media attention the last few days about the prospect of a derelict Russian passenger ship, the Lyubov Orlova, crossing the Atlantic from Canada (where it was last berthed) and crashing into Ireland or Britain, spilling disease-ridden, inbred, cannibal rats on their shores. The ship was being towed […]

Nature editorial supports science at the Field Museum

by Greg Mayer Jerry and I have written about the plight of science at Chicago’s Field Museum, both here at WEIT, and with several colleagues in a letter to Science. In an editorial, Nature, the leading scientific journal of the English-speaking world, has also spoken out in support of science at the Field. In the […]

First Amendment alert: bill in U.S. Congress gives money to rebuild storm-damaged churches

A piece in yesterday’s New York Times,¬† the American House of Representatives has overwhelmingly approved a bill (see link below) to allow government money to be used for repairing houses of worship damaged by Hurricane Sandy. The bill, approved last week by a vote of 354 to 72, had support from Roman Catholic and Jewish […]

The cats win, the cats win

by Greg Mayer The intertoobz has spoken: kittehs rool! By an online poll, a cat has replaced the iron as a new Monopoly playing piece. The Scottie dog’s nemesis now joins him in battle on the board itself, and a cosmic imbalance has been rectified.¬† (I never knew why an iron was a playing piece– […]

Stewie, world’s longest cat, dies

by Greg Mayer It is my sad duty to report to you that Stewie, the Guinness-certified world’s longest cat (1.23 m, nose to tail tip; also the longest tail, 41.5 cm) has died of cancer at the age of eight. He was a therapy cat, and I’m sure will be missed by his owners and […]

How’d they get it out, Alphie? or Television poisons everything

Thank goodness I have loyal readers who call my attention to heartwarming animal stories, like that of a curious English tabby named Alphie who swallowed a television antenna. And thank goodness as well that Alphie is fine. As the Guardian reports: A kitten has survived after swallowing a 15cm (6in) TV aerial. Alphie required emergency […]

The Piltdown Hoax at 100

by Greg Mayer The Geological Society (London) is having a special meeting today to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the Piltdown¬† hoax. There will also be a tour of a new special exhibit at the Natural History Museum (which also has a nice Piltdown website). It was exactly 100 years ago today that Charles Dawson, […]

Kaitlin Roig, heroine; John Lott, moron

Teachers in the U.S. don’t make much money: they’re woefully underpaid despite their onerous work and responsibility for educating the next generation. But there’s not enough money to pay teachers like Katilin Roig, who saved her classroom during the Newtown shootings. She describes what happened in this interview with Diane Sawyer. Listen to how well […]

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