Tagged: science

Activist confusion at fluoridation bill hearing (and coffee) - Open Parachute

Ken Perrott Mar 24, 2017

I have been in Wellington for the Parliamentary select committee hearings on fluoridation. Well, that was the excuse – I was really there to catch up with my family (always a joy and am amazed at how tall my grandson has become) and to enjoy the great food in Wellington cafes. Havana Coffee Works in Tory Street, Wellington. Great coffee … Read More

More to sundial than meets the eye - Physics Stop

Marcus Wilson Mar 22, 2017

Sundials are fun. As someone who visited a lot of stately homes  as a child (usually under duress), I found sundials in the gardens a welcome distraction from the monotony of trudging round a place with no other redeeming features that adults somehow seemed to find attractive. Not all adults did, I’m sure, but certainly my parents did.  First, there’s … Read More

How your daughter’s future doors may already be closed by the time she is six - Nano Girl

Michelle Dickinson Mar 17, 2017

Imagine you are reading a story to a child; the story goes something like this:   “There is one person at work who is really, really smart. They can figure out how to do things quickly, they come up with answers much faster and better than anyone else.  Now imagine telling this story: “There is one person at work who is … Read More

Physics is a science. Or maybe not. - Physics Stop

Marcus Wilson Mar 14, 2017

A couple of hours ago I gave a talk to the ‘education group’ in the Faculty of Engineering and Mathematical Sciences at the University of Western Australia. Broadly speaking, the audience was a group of physicists and engineers who are interested in education. I recycled a talk that I’d given a couple of years ago on the role of mathematics … Read More

Anti-fluoride authors indulge in data manipulation and statistical porkies - Open Parachute

Ken Perrott Mar 12, 2017

Darrell Huff & Irving Geis wrote a classic book – How to Lie With Statistics. They outline various ways data can be presented to give the wrong story. However, there is an even more naive use of statistics to misrepresent data – just declare that a relationship is statistically significant, don’t show any data or statistical analysis. Unfortunately, many … Read More

Marriage, kids, and the wage gap - The Dismal Science

Paul Walker Mar 11, 2017

The career dynamics of the gender gap for graduates of the Chicago Business School, as studied by Bertrand, Goldin, and Katz (2010), illustrate a common pattern. While women and men start their careers with similar earnings, a substantial gap arises over time, and the arrival of children is a major concurrent factor in the rising earnings gap. At least in … Read More

Trusting someone’s engineering calculations - Physics Stop

Marcus Wilson Mar 03, 2017

We put our trust in someone else’s calculations and measurements all the time. It’s just part of the modern world. Cross a bridge, drive a car, use anything electrical, and we implicity trust that the people who designed it, built it, installed it and tested it have done their job correctly. Occasionally things go wrong and disaster strikes, but, by … Read More

EPA comprehensively debunks anti-fluoride claims of a fluoride-IQ effect - Unsorted

Ken Perrott Feb 26, 2017

The US environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has denied an anti-fluoride petition to ban community water fluoridation. The document outlining its reasons for declining the petition is valuable because it considers all the arguments and evidence presented in the petition and comprehensively shows them to be misleading or even false. This is a humiliating defeat for the petitioners – the US  Fluoride Action … Read More

Debunking a “classic” fluoride-IQ paper by leading anti-fluoride propagandists - Open Parachute

Ken Perrott Feb 21, 2017

Three of the paper’s authors – Quanyong Xiang (1st Left), Paul Connett (2nd Left) and Bill Hirzy (far right) – preparing to bother the EPA. Anti-fluoride groups and “natural”/alternative health groups and websites are currently promoting a new paper by several leading anti-fluoride propagandists. For two reasons: It’s about fluoride and IQ. The anti-fluoride movement recently decided to give priority to this issue … Read More