Full Metal Links

Full Metal JacketMore on PepsiGate: Neuron Culture leaves, Mike doesn’t, ScienceBlogs apologises, Brookhaven explains and clarifies (and Josh discusses this), PZ, James Hrynyshyn, Erik Klemetti and Greg Laden move on [Later: as does Mike Dunford], Knight Science Journalism Tracker explains why that won’t help much, Jason Rosenhouse dismisses this as a teacup storm, and ERV has the best response. Drug Monkey settles in. Rebecca Skloot moves, twice. Even the Germans are sensibly commenting. Enough, already. I’ve already had my recommended daily dose of Schadenfreude. I’ll keep adding moved Sciencebloggers to the widget at right. [Later: The National Academies Press has free downloads of actual nutrition audio, books and videos here, since this was started by a “nutrition” blog.]

To other matters. Julia Gillard, the new Australian PM, has kept the bloody internet filter, after rejecting same-sex marriage. Is she pandering to the religious right? I think she is, just as much as Rudd did. I continue to weep for my country. Even the frigging Liberals are opposing it now. [“Liberal” in Australian equals “conservative” in Worldspeak. It usen’t to. Once upon a time it was about individual liberties.] The Greens continue to. Also locally, Australia is getting a 24 hour news channel, because we know how well that works with a 24 hour News Radio station already…

Elio Schaechter and Merry Yule take down the claim that Venter created a synthetic cell. At last, some science!

Carl Zimmer, who apparently sold his soul to the Science Communication Devil, has yet another good post taking down the claim that anything electronic might be a superorganism. [On another note, I received a copy of Mark Moffett’s Adventures Among Ants, a beautifully produced book on myrmecology and science. I have only skimmed it so far, though. He’s a fan of superorganisms. I’m not so much.]

Soul Physics is a cool blog if your interest is in the history and philosophy of Physics. Here’s a list of conferences upcoming. Also, the British Society for the Philosophy of Science is offering a doctoral scholarship, as reported at another interesting physics blog, Taking up Spacetime.

PZ linked to this cool video, “The Story of Stuff“. It’s about the ecological supply chain of resources and disposal of our stuff.

John Horgan reviews What Darwin Got Wrong. The Unpublishable Philosopher fisks Karen Armstrong.

Here is a paper that shows that the original 1983 report on climate change was not rammed through by vested interests, but instead was a case of cooperative science by experts.

Nicolas Nierenberg, Walter R. Tschinkel, and Victoria J. Tschinkel. Early Climate Change Consensus at the National Academy: The Origins and Making of Changing Climate. Historical Studies in the Natural Sciences, Vol. 40, Number 3, pps. 318–349.

There. That should keep ’em happy until I can do something more substantial. Did I just say that out loud?

21 thoughts on “Full Metal Links

  1. Wow. I had no idea that watching bloggers and their fans make fools of themselves could be so … uh, … stimulating. The Pepsi fiasco, the meltdown over at the Intersection, ERV’s abs; you guys have had me glued to my seat. And here I had been under the impression that, while PZ was something of an irresponsible troublemaker, most science bloggers were pretty mature.

    And what was with that Zombie thing a few days ago?

    Were these normal times, I would be recommending a series of guest blogs by Arlin Stoltzfus, over at Larry Moran’s Sandbox.
    Or, better yet, get it from the horses mouth at

    Oh, and btw, my gut tells me that the final shoe has not yet dropped in the “You’re STILL Not Helping” affair.


  2. Were you/people actually hopeful that the new PM would be a voice of reason? Was she such before being chosen for the new job?


    1. I always hope for the best in a new leader. Experience of the past is no guide here…

      How about you guys?


      1. I’ll tip my hat to the new constitution
        Take a bow for the new revolution
        Smile and grin at the change all around me
        Pick up my guitar and play
        Just like yesterday
        And I’ll get on my knees and pray
        We don’t get fooled again
        Don’t get fooled again
        No, no!


  3. Re: PepsiGate, one journalist wasn’t surprised. From The Guardian:

    While the science community reacted with indignation and shock this week over ScienceBlogs’ decision to publish a blog on nutrition written by food giant PepsiCo, I was unsurprised. I’ve been here before with Seed magazine, owners of the ScienceBlogs network.

    The article’s author, who had a column in Seed for a time, quotes an email from an editor at Seed:

    As for [the rejection of your] Bhopal [story], it’s a cautionary call on our part as we’re in the midst of advertising negotiations with Dow (who have been inspired by Seed’s photography in their own brand campaigns).


  4. According to today’s Oz, the filter is on hold for a year…..or two…..or? I think the intent is to let it fall down, apparently some ISP’s have come out and said they will block specific paedo sites.
    I still think that once she is safely ensconced and can get past some of the god-bots in the party, Julia will start moving down the road on gay marriage.


    1. Love to think you were right. But I don’t. This is Labor – there’s little they like more than a paternalistic control over things social. Gillard might become a progressive, but remember she was hip deep in the present policies.


  5. On the Sb kerfuffle, I had a look and as far as I can see (apart from the political blogs, i.e. Ed and Zuska and GMBM) they all seem to be academics.
    Perhaps their objection was a visceral reaction against allowing industrial scientists (not really real scientists you know, they have to produce saleable products) to soil the purity of Sb.

    I did find the cries of tainting their ethical purity and/or integrity rather amusing given some of the non-science postings many of them make, along with their rather obvious political biases.


    1. I tend to agree. They have had other opportunities to object to corporatism and advertising, and didn’t. But I can understand why individuals might find this a crisis of conscience.


  6. There seems to have been some lack of information from management to bloggers, too, which riled some of them up more than the introduction of earlier corporate cooperations. (Info taken from GrrlScientist’s account.)


    1. Oh I totally agree, the Sb managment do seem a little clueless, if they’d discussed it with their existing bloggers the fuss may have been avoided.

      Even so, they didn’t hide anything and the PepsiCo R&D people might have had some interesting things to report/say/reveal.

      Oh well, all over now.


    2. Possibly because she’s one of the few actual practicing scientists on scienceblogs that writes about science.


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