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Science

The Logic of Causal Conclusions: How we know that fire burns, fertilizer helps plants grow, and vaccines prevent disease

I usually cringe when I read a comment by a skeptic arguing that “correlation does not prove causation”. Of course, it’s true that correlation does not prove causation. It’s even true that correlation does not always imply causation. There are many great examples of spurious correlations which demonstrate clearly just how silly it is to extrapolate cause from correlation. And

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Eyewitness Memory: Wrongfully Convicted


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I felt compelled to write about eyewitness memory by a recent blog entry which I feel paints a misleading picture of the nature of memory and the (un)reliability of eyewitness memory.

Other skeptics have written about the subject and coverage has ranged from the pretty good to not so great. This blog post is somewhere in between. I have

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Hope for Narcissists? Not Here.

A piece by Joseph Brean that I read recently displayed the headline New hope for narcissists: New Canadian study suggests there may be a cure for self-centred[sic] grandiosity after all. My first thought was “I doubt it.”

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The press release for this study is pretty accurate and, although I have some criticisms of the study, the journal article doesn’t

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If you buy into scientism, does that make you a scientist?

While I was on vacation, I missed a post by Sharon Hill on Skeptical Inquirer online. She recently re-shared the piece on Facebook, so I had an opportunity to give it a good read. Sharon’s pieces are usually filled with thoughtful reminders to reign in arrogance and do more than just tolerate other view points, embrace them and learn from

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Why Skeptics Pick On Jenny McCarthy and Bill Maher

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Why do skeptics criticize Jenny McCarthy and Bill Maher?

Because they publicly trash mainstream science despite lacking the expertise to properly analyze methodology and draw different conclusions (how scientists do it).

Science uses peer review (not just “review”) to weed out bad studies, test the robustness of findings, and discuss appropriate conclusions. Peers are people who work in the same

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