January 31, 2010

DT Friday Freakout: Weekend WTF Edition

What's the hype from the worlds of science, medicine, safety, and parenting this week?

  • British newspapers totally make up scientific stories and then try to pass them off as the research findings of whatever hapless scientist is unlucky enough to get mentioned in the article. [psychologytoday]
  • British doctors totally make up scientific data and then try to pass them off as research findings in whatever prestigious journal is unlucky enough to peer-review that shit, thereby setting off a decade-long vaccines-cause-autism panic around the world. [discovermagazine]
  • Good Morning America, you'll never have children! Women over 30 have already lost 90% of their eggs and will never be able to have children. Research not valid for all the women who do have kids after 30. [abcnews via theawl]
  • Dads are paralyzed at the merest possibility of talking about sex with their children, says some book-flacking shrink on Babble. Dadwagon calls shenanigans. I say if you've got the balls to cite sex as a reason for chopping your kid's penis, you should have the balls to explain it to him. [babble via dadwagon]
  • Parents think their kids aren't as fat as they really are. [eurekalert]
  • Parents think their kids are way more allergic than they really are. Also, bonus points for using the term "wheezers." [sciencedaily]
  • Ambidextrousness causes language and school problems and ADHD, says a study funded by the Tie His Left Hand Behind His Back Foundation. [eurekalert]
  • Pediatric "'poop' dermatitis"--seriously, that's what Johns Hopkins is calling it--is on the upswing, thanks to the hot new trends of harsh chemicals and wooden toilet seats. [eurekalert]
  • A laughably preliminary study that is completely unrelated to any product in existence finds that pomegranate seed extract improves uterine contractions. Doulas everywhere just stuck cases of POM in the backs of their Subarus anyway. [eurekalert]
  • Babies' brains are wired to engage in "shared attention activities," such as staring at a computer screen with you. [sciencedaily]
  • Turns out England's embarrassingly low breastfeeding rate is related to race and the number of kids a woman has, not socialist health care and Jordan, as I would have guessed. [sciencedaily]


OK, here's the rundown.

Article the first - the Times of London is most certainly NOT considered to be the UK's most respectable broadsheet, unless you have been in a coma since the 70s. It's been a Rupert Murdoch Newscorp owned P.O.S. since 1981 and everyone knows it. It's also pretty rich for an American academic to be criticizing the state of the UK press considering the AP Washington bureau are stenographers if republican talking points. But just look at the number of Daily Mail articles that get play on blogs - people love that crap, if only to hold it up as a straw man to tear down (oh so easy!)

Link the 4th - thank you for turning me on to Dadwagon. That was a most excellent smackdown this week. Babble has been pissing me off for months now. I only read it to get annoyed now.

Penultimatenous - that explains the laptop key mashing sessions.

And finally - did I read that right? White mothers are more likely to stop breastfeeding earlier? I think it's also saying that the richer you are the more likely you are to stop earlier. It's a very confusing article. And, please stop saying 'England' when you are talking about the UK, they are not one and the same. I can prepare you a venn diagram explaining the british isles if you need a quick reference for the future.

ha, thanks, Since someone recently accused me of auditioning for the Daily Mail, when I was probably unconsciously auditioning for the Colbert Report, the important nuances of media can get lost in the Atlantic.

Until that faked vacctivist study story came out, I was planning to point out the richness of an evolutionary psychologist complaining about people making up scientific-sounding mumbo jumbo.

As for England, I'm sure breastfeeding rates in Scotland are through the roof; they're such an earthy people.

Studies show that pregnant teens in Scotland have their babies earlier than in England so they can get back to drinking alcopops.

How's that?

Apologies for the comment spam - but you should check out the Daily Mail-o-matic headline generator.

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