science

Medicine and the Spanish Civil War

A historical survey of medicine in Spain during the Spanish Civil War

Journal of the Royal Society of Medicine 2002 March; 95(3): 147–150.
The Royal Society of Medicine

by Nicholas Coni, FRCP

Emergence of Modern Genetics in Spain and the Effects of the Spanish Civil War (1936–1939) on Its Development

An assessment of the effects of the Spanish Civil War on the development of genetics in Spain.

Journal of the History of Biology 35: 111–148, (2002)

SUSANA PINAR
Dpto. Historia de la Ciencia
Instituto de Historia, CSIC
C/ Duque de Medinaceli 6
28014 Madrid
Spain

Rationality & Science - Noam Chomsky

chomsky

Chomsky on rationality & science. This essay formed part of a Z-Papers special issue on the topic in 1995.

THIS DISCUSSION involves people with a large range of shared aspirations and commitments; in some cases at least, friends who have worked and struggled together for many years. I hope, then, that I can be quite frank. And personal, since to be honest, I don't see much of independent substance to discuss.

When hospital is a prison

Ben Goldacre on the use of psychiatry as a form of social control, and the politically-motivated diagnosis of mental illness. Feb 2003.

When I hear the phrase “political psychiatric diagnosis”, I start thinking about Soviet dissidents, dosed up on thioridazine, being physically restrained on lock-up wards. I like to think I would have had nothing to do with that kind of business, because I went into psychiatry to help people, not to be a jailer.

Goldacre: 'Argument is about capitalism, not food '

organic food

Ben Goldacre points to the analogies between the 'organic' food argument and the BigPharma vs homeopathy/'alternative medicine' - mainly that all niches will be filled under capitalism.

Ben Goldacre, of Bad Science fame, reports on the Soil Association's response a recent Food Standards Agency (FSA) report on organic food. Goldacre says the FSA's report shows "that organic food is no better than normal food, in terms of composition, or health benefits".

US military researching microwave crowd control weapons

ADS

The United States military is still researching a controversial microwave weapon that could be deployed against crowds from aircraft.

The US military is to increase funding for the Active Denial System (ADS) from $2mil to $10mil despite the controversy surrounding the weapon. The ADS is described by the Pentagon as a 'non-lethal weapon' and is intended to be used a crowd control device.

Stephen Jay Gould: What Does it Mean to Be a Radical?

Gould in Simpsons

Marxist biologists Richard Lewontin and Richard Levins remember the life and career of paleontologist and science writer Stephen Jay Gould, and his role in the social criticism of science.

Early this year, Stephen Gould developed lung cancer, which spread so quickly that there was no hope of survival. He died on May 20, 2002, at the age of sixty. Twenty years ago, he had escaped death from mesothelioma, induced, we all supposed, by some exposure to asbestos.

The political economy of hybrid corn

corn

Marxist geneticist Richard Lewontin and economist Jean-Pierre Berlan discuss the economics of and role of capital in the production of hybrid corn. This article follows their 'Technology, research, and the penetration of capital: the case of U.S. agriculture' article.

Source: Monthly Review, July-August, 1986 by Jean-Pierre Berlan, R.C. Lewontin

Technology, research, and the penetration of capital: the case of U.S. agriculture

agribusiness

Economist Jean-Pierre Berlan and marxist geneticist Richard Lewontin reveal the politics and economics behind 1980s US agribusiness.

Source: Monthly Review, July-August, 1986 by R.C. Lewontin, Jean-Pierre Berlan

Hoax academic articles, media meddling, and problems with 'open access' as it exists.

Some recent hoax articles are demonstrating the flaws in the control of information and particularly academic publishing. A recent hoax demonstrates that, so long as you are willing to pay, you can get anything published, even computer generated mumbo-jumbo. And if you can't pay, you either don't publish, or the company owns the product of your labour. Open access isn't as open as it seems.

Not quite as lol-worthy as the 'Sokal hoax' but certainly a nice effort is the story of a recent hoax paper submitted to, and accepted, by an open-access information science journal.