Quickies

Quickies: Are GMOs Overrated, Naturopaths Lobby to be Mainstreamed, and Ice Cream Wars

  • GMOs Are Safe, But Don’t Always Deliver On Promises, Top Scientists Say – “The committee also found that GMOs, as promised, have allowed farmers of some crops to spray less insecticide to protect their crops — although there’s a risk that the GMO crops may not work as well in the future, because insects could develop resistance to them. Also, there’s no evidence that GMOs have reduced the amount of wild plant and insect life on farms. And the report found that some claims about the benefits of GMOs have been exaggerated.”
  • Naturopaths, often derided as quacks, push to go mainstream — with help from vitamin companies – “Next Monday, more than 100 aspiring and practicing naturopaths plan to storm Capitol Hill to rally support for a federal pilot program that would allow them to be reimbursed by Medicare for some patients. Naturopaths are also lobbying for expanded authority to diagnose and treat patients in a handful of states, including Massachusetts and Michigan.” Aw hell no!
  • Is Gut Science Biased? – “The vast majority of data on microbiomes across science is still mostly coming from people in the U.S., Canada and Europe, and having too narrow a sample of the population means we could be looking at the proverbial trees when what we need to understand is the whole forest.”
  • The Antioch Review’s Transphobic Essay Isn’t About Free Speech – “Many of us have heard, read or had it used against us before: the ghost of ‘free speech.’ And yes—I do mean the ghost of it, because the way it’s so often used nowadays is a bastardized trope, side-lining nearly every nuanced conversation about language, voice, space and power that centers marginalized people. Rarely does free speech champion or become a banner for the then (and still) controversial, resistance-focused rhetoric of radical activists of color.”
  • The Violent Ice Cream Wars of 1980s Scotland – ” ‘Mafia-style warfare broke out when two brothers decided to muscle in on an ice cream monopoly controlled by two families,’ read the Glasgow Herald in 1979, in a story detailing how two brothers, both ice cream men, had attacked a rival ice cream van with bricks and planks of wood, and caused a mob scene.”
  • Women Get Sports Concussions At Higher Rates Than Men – “Some researchers have wondered whether women and girls are simply more likely to report their symptoms than men and boys are. ‘It’s a sexist way to say that they’re not as tough,’ said Katherine Price Snedaker, executive director of Pink Concussions,1 an organization that is seeking answers to how concussions affect women and girls.”

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Mary

Mary

Mary Brock is a scientist who works on drugs you've hopefully never heard of. She enjoys cooking to Blue Grass music, messing with her cats, and hosting the Boston Skeptics' Book Club. She was born in the South but loves living in New England (despite the lack of chocolate chip pizza). Mary does not use Twitter and don't even try to follow her, because she is always looking over her shoulder.

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4 Comments

  1. May 18, 2016 at 9:35 am —

    It’s official, I have just added anti-GMO cranks to my list of people whose poorly thought out arguments almost guarantee me a headache.

    Right up there with Young Earth Creationists, climate change deniers, conspiracy theorists, anti-vaxxers, MRAs, and Libertarians.

    I can more easily ignore bigots, misogynists, xenophobes, religious zealots and the like. Not because they are better, they are not, but because they are hopelessly wrong and will not change easily.

    With the first crowd it is so much more frustrating, it’s like they want to get to the right conclusion (usually) and they are really trying but their logic is flawed and their sources are corrupted and their conclusions are therefore broken. As Maxwell Smart used to say, “Missed it by that much!”.

    Now, excuse me while I find my Excedrine.

  2. May 18, 2016 at 12:35 pm —

    NPR can’t be seen showing unreserved praise towards GMOs, so they need to temper it with “GMOs are great! Just not touched by the hand of an angel. Don’t get mad at us for praising GMOs, please, hippie-crowd.”

    Freaking Naturopaths and Antioch Review.

  3. May 18, 2016 at 1:08 pm —

    I’d like to see someone do an article about the Bros4Hillary incident.

  4. May 19, 2016 at 5:52 am —

    Just an FYI – The Radiolab postcast has an episode on an Ice Cream war, but in the USA.

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