Category Archives: woo

New York Times column by atheist touts real miracles produced by incipient saints

We’ve already met Dr. Jacalyn Duffin, a hematologist at Queen’s University in Ontario, when, on NPR, she gave credence to “miracles” supposedly caused by a postmortem Mother Teresa. Duffin, an atheist, has studied the Vatican’s methods for ruling out naturalistic causes of the cures used to validate sainthood (it takes two such miracles), and she agrees with […]

NPR touts Mother Teresa’s “miracles”

I’m not sure if National Public (NPR) radio has always been this soft on religion, but I’m sure noticing it now.  Yesterday the network broadcast a particularly egregious episode dealing with the two “verified miracles” required to canonize a saint (now including Mother Teresa). The good news is that the piece was only five minutes long, but it […]

Can we please abandon the word “spiritual”?

I’m busy with my children’s book, and will be for a few days, because writing it is HARD. In fact, it’s about harder than any 1500 words I’ve ever written. I don’t have children, and know only that you shouldn’t condescend to them in books, and that the books should appeal to parents as well […]

Yahoo News science feed sends horoscopes

Yes, thanks to alert reader Rodger, I discovered that the Yahoo SCIENCE FEED sends horoscopes to the readers. Here’s a headline; click on the screenshot to see the “change”. (Hint: it’s not about a change in the brightness at night.) What’s the change in store. I quote from Yahoo: When darkness descends and you look to […]

Is the “cupping” of Olympic athletes so awful?

All over the skeptical/rational blogosphere, people are calling out those Olympic athletes, including Michael Phelps, who have tried to improve their performance via “cupping therapy“: putting small glass bells over parts of the body and creating a vacuum in them that breaks blood vessels below the skin, producing a circular bruise.   Here’s Michael Phelps getting cupped at […]

ID advocates mock determinism, insist on libertarian free will and human exceptionalism

The boys over at the Discovery Institute (DI) spend a lot of time mocking me online, but I rarely pay attention. And when I do, I’m sort of flattered, and for two reasons: they think that what I write here is important enough to attack, and because when those creationist mushbrains go after me, I know I’m doing […]

Psychiatrist, a “man of science,” claims to exorcise real demons

As I’ve noted before, Pope Francis is a big believer in devils and demonic possession. The Vatican has an Official Exorcist, and there are hundreds of Catholic priests holding the equivalent of Exorcism Licenses. Not many people know this (and the Church, for obvious reasons, tries to keep that under wraps), but it’s information easily accessible with […]

Researchers: Saying the name of “Allah” while killing a chicken changes its liver and muscles

If this paper is right, and it surely isn’t, it would be evidence not only for God, but for the Islamic god—Allah. What we have, courtesy of reader S. Krishna, is a paper from the 2013 volume of International Journal of Poultry Science (reference and link to abstract below) claiming that chickens slaughtered in halal […]

PuffHo touts the afterlife

Read and weep: science says we live on! Click the screenshot: What science tells us: Here is a brief list of the advantages we can expect if we as a global society begin to pay more attention to these sources. • Our lives would be seen as “going somewhere” or “adding up to something.” We […]

Tw**t of the day: “Epigenetic poetry”

Antonio Regalado is the Senior Editor for Biomedicine at MIT Technology Review. Sadly, given his position he seems unable to distinguish between reality and well-written but incorrect descriptions of reality. “Epigenetic poetry” indeed. If you want lyrical science, first be sure it’s good science. UPDATE: In the comments, reader suggested that Regalado was being sarcastic here, and, if […]