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The Top 10 Junk Science Claims of 2005

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Cal

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The Top 10 Junk Science Claims of 2005
http://www.foxnews.com/printer_friendly_story/0,3566,180148,00.html
Thursday, December 29, 2005

By Steven Milloy

It’s that time of year again when we at JunkScience.com reflect on all the dubious achievements and irresponsible claims made by the junk science community throughout the year.

These “lowlights” have a lot in common — namely exaggeration and hidden agendas — but they cover a diverse range of scientific themes, from child development to embryonic stem cell research to everyday radiation exposure to trying to lay blame for hurricanes.

Although virtually the entire “Top 10” could easily consist of global warming items — climate hysteria being the most important junk science issue of our time — in the interest of diversity, JunkScience.com’s Top 10 for 2005 are:

1. Obese Statistics Get Liposuction. After years of alarming the American public with ever-scarier estimates of obesity-related deaths, the Centers for Disease Control finally backed away from its exaggerated 2004 claim of 400,000 deaths annually and made a 93 percent downward adjustment to just 25,814 deaths. It’s not clear that even that number can stand up to scrutiny. Read more...

2. Cruelty to Students. People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) was permitted to incorporate its radical animal rights school curriculum throughout America via its “education” arm known as TeachKind. PETA’s “learning materials” claim that such innocuous behavior as drinking milk is an example of “animal cruelty,” which their Web site repeatedly claims is an unmistakable predictor of future adult psychopathy. Read more…

3. U.N.-natural disasters? In a bid to blame alleged global warming for hurricanes and tsunamis and, ultimately, to force the deep-pocket U.S. government, businesses and taxpayers to pick up the tab for damages from such climatic phenomena, the United Nations conspicuously dropped the word “natural” from the title of its annual conference on natural disasters. Read more…

4. Burger Baloney. Researchers from the National Cancer Institute and the American Cancer Society, looking into whether beef consumption could be linked to increased risk of colon cancer, published a study in January with apparently alarming conclusions. Closer examination, however, revealed more creative slicing and dicing of data by a few researchers at the NCI who seem to have a history of publishing anti-meat research. Read more…

5. Franken-movie, not Franken-food. An anti-biotech “crockumentary” entitled “The Future of Food” opened in small movie theaters around the country, resuscitating environmentalists’ long-discredited claims about the “dangers” of biotech crops, one of the most thoroughly tested and regulated technologies ever developed.

Tragically, the Green’s anti-biotech mania continues to doom millions in the Third World to blindness caused by nutritional deficiency. Read more…

6. Afraid-iation? In July, a National Academy of Sciences research panel ominously announced that there is no safe exposure to radiation. While this may sound intuitively plausible, the panel ignored a host of facts, including that 82 percent of the average person’s exposure to ionizing radiation is natural and unavoidable – coming at low levels from the universe and the ground ­– and that, other than slightly higher cancer rates among the Japanese atomic bomb survivors, there are no data to support the idea that typical exposures are dangerous. Read more…

7. Warning: This Label Based on Junk Science. In July, the Center for Science in the Public Interest petitioned the FDA to require warning labels on soft drinks. It seems the “food police,” who have no credible scientific data on which to base their petition, are out to demonize just about every food other than soy milk and bulgar wheat. Read more…

8. Stem Cell Fast-One. August headlines touted the latest breakthrough in stem cell research – Harvard researchers announced they had discovered a way to fuse adult skin cells with embryonic stem cells, effectively bypassing the ethical concerns surrounding stem cell research by not having to produce or destroy human embryos.

In reality, the hype was not only premature — since the new cells were still contaminated with embryonic genetic material — it appears to have been an exercise in political science as the Senate neared consideration of a bill that would circumvent President Bush’s funding limitations for embryonic stem cell research. Read more…

9. The Lone-Tree Theory. It nearly took an act of Congress to get the researcher behind the notorious “hockey stick” graph, which purports to show a steep rise in global temperature in the 20th century following a millennium of stable temperatures, to release his publicly funded data and computer code. Among other dubious presumptions, the graph is derived from data that bases climate estimates for the entire 15th century on the tree ring measurements of a single tree. Read more…

10. Baby Bottle Battle. In introducing a bill to ban toys and child care articles made with the chemical bisphenol-A (BPA), California State Assemblywoman Wilma Chan fell prey to an environmentalist-perpetuated myth that had long ago been debunked. The “endocrine disruptor” scare has been perpetuated by the unsubstantiated and irreproducible scientific claims of an activist-researcher long-determined to frighten the public away from perfectly safe products. Read more…

So fasten your safety belts for 2006. No doubt the future holds many more not-so-great “junk science” moments for us all.

Steven Milloy publishes JunkScience.com and CSRwatch.com, is adjunct scholar at the Cato Institute and the Competitive Enterprise Institute.
 

Red Robin

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Every scientific theory through out history has been wrong up till the current ones we hold. Evolution and carbon dating are a couple that I believe will eventually be accepted as untrue. In my mind with the limited knowledge I have they sure appear to be uncredible. Expounding on the evolution theory, every theory to be unfalsified needs a plausable begining. The big bang theory and the resulting inorganic material turning into organic , then life form , then self replicating life , then sexually reproduced life (here is an odd one , what did the first sexually reproducing genetic mutant copulate with??? and why??) then to take that all the way to man with all the physical , mental and spiritual capabilities seem absurd. Just looking back at the begining how can time space and matter appear congruently from nothing.You cant have time , space , or matter with out the other two. To this old uneducated man evolution just seems stupid!
 

Liberty Belle

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I have always had trouble trying to swallow the whole theory of evolution. There are just too many questions that remain unanswered.

Where are the missing links?

Look in someone's eye and tell me how just that one little feature could have evolved from a bacteria or one-celled amoeba.

If all living things are a product of evolution, why did all creatures "evolve" into so many diverse beings?

Where did that first spark of life come from and why can't scientists duplicate that wonderful occurrence in the laboratory?

I could go on and on, but you get the picture.

True science can be proven and replicated. Evolution can’t, which is why it remains just a theory and should be taught as such. Intelligent design and creation can’t be proven either, but they make a heck of a lot more sense than anything evolutionists and humanists have to offer.
 

Red Robin

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Liberty Belle said:
True science can be proven and replicated. Evolution can’t, which is why it remains just a theory and should be taught as such. Intelligent design and creation can’t be proven either, but they make a heck of a lot more sense than anything evolutionists and humanists have to offer.
The difference between evolution and creation is creation is obviously a religion and evolution is a religion disguised as science. Evolution is a tax funded religion being taught in our public schools . It needs to stop.
 

MsSage

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I was researching information on Darwin for my scienctific writting class (ugggg) I have been finding some very distrubing things. I will sat that I believe that God created all liveing creatures but over time some may have "evolved". I dont believe ther has been Major changes but suttle ones. ie.. Human hight. 100 years ago the avarage man was 5'6" today the avarage man is 5'11".
The main thing I learned was to ask this question. Can you tell me anything you know about Darwin, anything that is true?
I am sure like me you will find you know very little other than we came from a primortal soup.
What alot of people have forgotten and modern publishers have cleaned up is how racist Darwin was.
If your up for an eye opening experience do a search on his thoeries.
 

Disagreeable

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MS Sage, did I miss your post telling me which of my freedoms are being defended in Iraq? If so, please provide a link; if not, either tell me or back off your claim that the Iraqi war is a defense of American freedoms. Waiting.....
 

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I guess you just have to be a Republican Federal judge, appointed by George W. Bush to understand. Link below; my emphasis.

"In one of the biggest courtroom clashes between faith and evolution since the 1925 Scopes Monkey Trial, a federal judge barred a Pennsylvania public school district Tuesday from teaching “intelligent design” in biology class, saying the concept is creationism in disguise.

U.S. District Judge John E. Jones delivered a stinging attack on the Dover Area School Board, saying its first-in-the-nation decision in October 2004 to insert intelligent design into the science curriculum violates the constitutional separation of church and state.

The ruling was a major setback to the intelligent design movement, which is also waging battles in Georgia and Kansas. Intelligent design holds that living organisms are so complex that they must have been created by some kind of higher force."


http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/10545387/
 

Red Robin

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Disintelligent if you want to defend the usual side of stupidity why don't you give us sound evidence of how the universe came into being . If you can't do that why don't you just give us your opinion.
 

Disagreeable

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Red Robin said:
Disagreeable where did I say intelligent design in not religion.

And where did I say you did?

I was just happily pointing out that the judge making this decision was appointed to his postion by George W. Bush. I especially liked this comment:

"The judge also said: It is ironic that several of these individuals, who so staunchly and proudly touted their religious convictions in public, would time and again lie to cover their tracks and disguise the real purpose behind the ID Policy.”

(from the same link)
 

Disagreeable

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MsSage said:
http://msnbc.msn.com/id/9967813/
Kansas adopted non darwin on state issued tests.

How do you defend this?
http://www.goodschools.com/darwin.htm

If you feel that is biased

http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/origin.html
http://pages.britishlibrary.net/charles.darwin/

Happy Reading

It was "rights" that we started talking about and I told you your right to life.

Yes, you cited a CBS article as proof that Saddam and Bin Laden were joined at the hip. The article was merely a report of a lawsuite being filed making that claim. I posted a statement (with link) from George Bush saying it's not true and comments from the 9-11 Commission. If you want I can come up with a statement from the Senate investigation of 9-11 that says the same thing.

So now the question is: what does the Iraqi war have to do with my right to live?
 

Disagreeable

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Red Robin said:
Disintelligent if you want to defend the usual side of stupidity why don't you give us sound evidence of how the universe came into being . If you can't do that why don't you just give us your opinion.

Because I'm here to bash Bush on the Iraqi war.
 

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Disagreeable said:
Because I'm here to bash Bush on the Iraqi war.

And what does that have to do with the subject of intelligent design/evolution being taught in schools? :?

Way to turn the thread into a your typical Bush-bashing mantra. :roll:
 

Red Robin

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Disagreeable said:
Red Robin said:
Disintelligent if you want to defend the usual side of stupidity why don't you give us sound evidence of how the universe came into being . If you can't do that why don't you just give us your opinion.

Because I'm here to bash Bush on the Iraqi war.
Pick a different thread. We are trying to have a reasonable discussion.
 

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