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PLOS ONE, Transplantation, Retract 15 Chinese Studies Due To Concerns About Informed Consent

Aug 16 2019 - 18:08
Every other month American journalists gleefully proclaim that communist China is spending more money (at least according to China) and producing more papers and that America is finished.

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What Scientists Just Learned From The Hidden Drawing Beneath DaVinci's "Virgin of the Rocks"

Aug 16 2019 - 17:08
In 2005, part of a hidden drawing beneath Leonardo Da Vinci’s "Virgin of the Rocks", commissioned for an altarpiece in 1483, was found, and scholars working on the National Gallery in London treasure have uncovered more.

Artist's reused materials, if there were errors, changes or they changed their minds, and now thanks to infrared and hyperspectral imaging plus X-ray fluorescence to find zinc in the drawings, we know something about what Da Vinci had originally planned. Using infrared reflectography in 2005, they discovered a preliminary drawing of the Virgin Mary - different from the final result.

And now they have revealed Leonardo’s earlier design for the angel and baby Christ.

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You Can Pretend NASA's Astrobiology Novels Are For Kids, But Everyone Will Love Them

Aug 16 2019 - 14:08
In 2010, to celebrate 50 years of Exobiology and Astrobiology research at the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) they commissioned a graphic history of the people and events that have shaped the science of nascent Exobiology and Astrobiology research.

Of course, how we came to be is not a new field, for as long as mankind was able to take a break from grinding out life we've wondered how it all came to be.

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If The Keto Diet Cures Your Migraines, You Don't Have Migraines

Aug 16 2019 - 06:08
A recent paper claims the ketogenic diet (basically the Atkins diet, except you can't sell new diet books using old names) will help with migraines.

Other more dangerous claims are that it will help with schizophrenia and epilepsy. The reality is that if the ketogenic diet could do any of those things, meal plans would be in double-blind clinical trials right now. Those diseases are a trillion dollar market. 

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There's No Scientific Evidence For CBD Health Claims - There Is Little Evidence It Is Even Safe

Aug 16 2019 - 06:08
With marijuana now increasingly legal, there is less and less use for the junk health claims about supposed benefits. Sure, it works for some, but any time a product is claimed anecdotally to work for dozens of different issues, it is just a placebo.

Companies want to move away from the marijuana stigma (and the tax - California couldn't wait to legalize it so they could slap 40 percent tax on it) so the supplement trend has been Cannabidiol (CBD) in the food and beverage industry, where almost anything goes when it comes to health and wellness claims. If you are willing to pay to claim it, someone is willing to pay to believe you.

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Rising Water Stress Slowed Down RATE Of Increase In Greening - World Still Greening Fast (or Browning, For Ocean Seaweed)

Aug 16 2019 - 00:08

This is an interesting paper but it’s been misreported widely. Over the last decade the world has continued to get greener almost everywhere, especially so in India, many farmers now grow several crops a year in many areas instead of one, and in China because of its work on reafforestation, restoring degraded land and more intensive agriculture.

Only 5% of the Earth has a browning. So why does the map in this recent Nature paper seem to show the opposite?

Well it’s because it is a map of a change in the RATE of greening.

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The Amount Of Water Injected In Conventional Oil And Gas Production Exceeds Fracking By 10X

Aug 15 2019 - 19:08
High-volume hydraulic fracturing, colloquially called fracking, injects water, sand and chemicals under high pressure into petroleum-bearing rock formations to recover previously inaccessible oil and natural gas. While it was experimented with since the 1940s, it only became viable in the 1990s and early 2000s and it led to the current shale gas boom that started about 15 years ago. 

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CDC Epidemiologist George Luber Sues Because He Only Wants To Write About Global Warming

Aug 15 2019 - 15:08
George Luber, who ran the climate and health program at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention before only being allowed in the office accompanied by an armed guard since May, is touted as a climate scientist by Reuters, but he is an epidemiologist. He got his degree in anthropology, a social science.

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Teva Pharmaceuticals Doesn't Have The Cash Flow To Pay Its Upcoming Debt

Aug 15 2019 - 12:08
Teva Pharmaceutical, which once responded to price-fixing allegations with ‘polite f-u’ letters’ now doesn't have the cash flow to pay off $4.2 billion of debt that matures in 2021.

Refinancing maturities is not usually a big deal but Teva and Mylan and Heritage Pharmaceuticals became the poster children for Big Pharma arrogance - even though they are all genetic companies, and were somehow wrapped in an ethical halo compared to their original product predecessors. 

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New York City: Obamacare Led To A Surge In Unnecessary Ambulance Rides

Aug 15 2019 - 10:08
If something is free, do you use it more? It seems so, in New York City ambulance usage for minor injuries (abrasions, minor burns, muscle sprains) rose by 37 percent after the Affordable Care Act was implemented.

An ambulance for a scrape? Yes, nearly 3,000 more of them, and that is just in one city. All paid for by everyone whose premiums went up.

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If You Want To Sell Organic Food As Medicine, This Report Says Baby Boomers Are The Way To Go

Aug 15 2019 - 07:08
Baby Boomers, the generation that gave us rampant alcoholism, divorce, over-medicated American culture, and denial of science to protect the environment, are now being targeted by marketing groups with claims you don't need medicine, you can cure disease with...food.

I'm not being mean to baby boomers, they also were the first generation to have a polio vaccine and they ended Smallpox. They paid the taxes that funded an optimistic War On Cancer and the successful moon landings and Medicare. I was just noting that if you are in the spin business, you can frame broad demographics, especially tens of millions of people, any way you want.

And that is being done with a report saying baby boomers thinks food - specifically organic food -is medicine.

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Science Is Not A Corporate Conspiracy Part LVIII

Aug 15 2019 - 06:08
In America, FOIA documents show lots of emails with partisan journalists, allied academics, and organic industry trafe groups colluding to promote each other's articles opposing science like pesticides and biotechnology.

And documents show biotech companies like Monsanto doing the same. But an investigation into a supposed controversy claimed by trade groups like US Right To Know and their sister sites like Sourcewatch led to nothing.

"We couldn't find anything special or unusual about the lists - it was mostly information that you could find in a public place with a bit of research."

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North Sea Dogger Bank Wind Turbine Project Could Supply More Power To The EU By 2045 Than Coal Does Now

Aug 14 2019 - 21:08

This is a plan for a wind turbine hub in the North Sea on Dogger Bank, that could up to 180GW by 2045 in time to help Europe achieve net zero emissions. The “Dogger Bank”, is the sunken Doggerland, a region of the North Sea that used to be above the sea in the last ice age. It is far from land, so winds would be much more steady.

The shallowest parts are only 15 meters below sea level making it an ideal place to build artificial islands (a bit like the Chinese artificial islands in the South China sea) and build sea turbines like this. The turbines could be towed into place as is already done for offshore wind. This video briefly describes it:

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California Farmers Use More Chlorpyrifos Than Any State. Now Politicians Are Banning It - Without Seeing Data

Aug 14 2019 - 18:08
In today's politicization of science news, California, which just got scolded by EPA for trying to put cancer warning labels on a weedkiller (of all things) pivoted to ban the pesticide chlorpyrifos.

Last year, the scientifically wacky 9th Circuit Court of Appeals in California - the most overturned appeals court by the Supreme Court of the United States - tried to order EPA to ban chlorpyrifos even though they hadn't seen any data showing it causes any defects in people. 

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Vaping Association Sues To Block FDA's New E-Cigarette Review Date

Aug 14 2019 - 17:08
In 2009, broad new authority for FDA over tobacco products didn't include e-cigarettes because they were just a blip. Later, they took off in popularity. The free market is always mysterious but I liken it to Wi-fi and Bluetooth. While a centralized committee drawn from large companies came up with Bluetooth for the wireless future, then were years late in rolling out a product that didn't work very well, Wi-fi took off thanks to small players and public uptake in the free market.

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CDC Gun Data Is Flawed Because One Hospital Swap Skewed Results

Aug 14 2019 - 15:08
If you don't trust Centers for Disease Control claims on vaping, opioids, or pre-diabetes, you are not wrong. In the last decade they became increasingly unreliable for anything where they don't just gather data from states, like vaccine rates and how many people vomit after buying unpasteurized milk

On numerous other issues, they seem to pick a position and then torture data until they confess. And that is a concern about all their findings. In the case of gun violence there is a concern about their numbers they replaced one hospital in a small (60) sample with one that had more than 100 times greater non-fatal gun injuries its predecessor ever had. The new hospital added over 22,000 gun injuries to the 2015 national estimate which made gun violence look more common.

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Mainstream Eenvironmentalism and “The Empty Radicalism of the Climate Apocalypse" When It Comes To Food

Aug 14 2019 - 14:08
The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) Special Report on Climate Change and Land says that up to 183 million more people will be at risk of hunger and solutions proposed to mitigate climate change will lead to a ~20% increase in hunger in Africa, southeast Asia, and India but it will be felt everywhere. 

Devang Mehta says that's why he came away from the report more frustrated than ever with mainstream public environmentalism and what one policy expert has called, “the empty radicalism of the climate apocalypse.”

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Australia Trusts Australians On Knowing If They Want To Eat Meat

Aug 14 2019 - 14:08
Since 1981, the beef industry had reduced emission intensity by 14 percent and reduced emissions due to land use change by 42 percent, yet in Australia, as in other developed countries, activists have done with emissions what they did with low-fat diets: Exaggerated a problem that does not exist to get money advocating for a solution that won't make any difference.

Australians seem to be willing to stand up for reason at a time when American (and British) journalists are more interested in evangelizing claims by their political allies.

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Jupiter's Gravitational Mystery May Have Been Caused By Collision With Another Planet

Aug 14 2019 - 13:08
The Juno mission, designed to help scientists better understand Jupiter's origin and evolution, was launched in 2011 to map its gravitational and magnetic fields and probe the planet's deep, internal structure.

It's found some mysterious gravitational readings which experts infer mean Jupiter's core is less dense and more extended that expected. 

Jupiter began as a dense, rocky or icy planet that later gathered its thick atmosphere from the primordial disk of gas and dust that birthed our sun so what if the recent data could be explained by a giant impact that stirred Jupiter's core, mixing the dense contents of its core with less dense layers above. Like another planet.

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Anti-Fracking Ecologist Robert Howarth Is Back With A New Cosmic Claim About Methane

Aug 14 2019 - 11:08
If you are worried about climate change and don't embrace natural gas as a bridge to whatever energy wins the future - solar, hydrogen, nuclear - you don't understand energy density and emissions.

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