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Posted inRaising Freethinkers

The science you will never know

The science you will never know can kill you, and it can save your life. Getting scientific answers right is more important at this point in history in countless ways than it has ever been. You and I cannot be productive contributors to every scientific conversation, except in one way: by pointing, on a given issue for which we lack expertise, to the people who do know what the hell they’re talking about.

Posted inMeaning & Purpose

AI is here: Are we finally ready to rethink the value of being human?

Reading Time: 6 minutes It’s been a good few months for machine-learning software—and a confusing one for the humans trying to live their best lives around it. Last fall, digital art generators like Midjourney and DALL-E drew the alarm of illustrators, photographers, and other digital artists: not just because the algorithms were trained on data not expressly sanctioned by […]

Posted inDeep Dive

2022: The year in global review, Part II

Reading Time: 9 minutes Our exercise in the folly of year-end lists continues! In Part I of this global review for 2022, three key themes emerged from this year’s major news events. The first was “Europe on fire”, and the implications of energy infrastructure policy for the environment and future imperialist tyranny. The second dealt with the collapse of […]

Posted inDeep Dive

2022: The year in global review, Part I

Reading Time: 8 minutes All end-of-year lists are suspect. One must embrace futility when trying to summarize what happened on a planet of eight billion for one spin around the sun. So why do we do write them? At best, to break up our routines of knee-jerk outrage at the latest inane news item, and to think more systematically […]

Posted inHealthcare

A colonoscopy probably saved my life—but not from colorectal cancer

Reading Time: 5 minutes If reports about a new European study that questions the effectiveness of colonoscopies are causing you to question whether you should get one, don’t let them. I make this recommendation due to my own life-changing personal experience with that undignified cancer-detecting procedure more than a year ago. If the routine, every-5-years colonoscopy I underwent in […]

Posted inHealth

COVID-19 now haunts flu season: What other long term impacts can we expect?

Reading Time: 11 minutes It’s been a rough few days for anyone following flu season data. While China has eased zero-COVID restrictions in the face of protests, despite currently experiencing a surge in case count (along with Japan), North American hospitals face what the American Medical Association is openly calling a “tripledemic”: a wave of flu, Respiratory Syncytial Virus […]

Posted inSpace

NASA’s Artemis: A big step in sending humans to Mars

Reading Time: 5 minutes When NASA’s ambitious Artemis I project rocket—the agency’s most powerful launch vehicle ever—blasted into space from Florida’s Kennedy Space Center on November 16, scarcely more than a century ago automobiles and airplanes were still in their cradles. In a historical blink of an eye, in other words, human existence has been utterly transformed by technology. […]

Posted inScience

Alzheimer’s latest drug and science journalism’s memory problem

Reading Time: 6 minutes In July, the medical community was rocked by a disappointing reminder of science’s weakest link: the humans doing the work. The journal Science had shared that its six-month investigation supported the findings of whistleblower Matthew Schrag, who first noted altered images in a high-impact paper on Alzheimer’s, published in Nature in 2006. That paper is […]

Posted inClimate Crisis

So what did COP27 actually accomplish?

Reading Time: 7 minutes From November 6 to 20, world leaders and representatives met for the 27th United Nations Climate Change Conference of the Parties (COP27), held this year in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt. The conference started and ended late due to reluctance around one key initiative: the topic of loss and damage for vulnerable countries hit by climate change […]

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