Other Bits

“Menopause relief: Do not use if pregnant”

Recently, I came across this product available for over-the-counter sale. It was one of a number of herbal remedies, each targeting different ailments, that were available at this premises. I was immediately struck by the information on the label. As it was quite expensive I was reluctant to buy it, so I […]

Emergency contraception: Pragmatics, politics, and (just) a little science

Recently, the Irish state’s national Medicines Board legalized the availability of emergency contraception on an over-the-counter basis in high-street pharmacies. The drug, NorLevo, an emergency contraception that can prevent pregnancy if taken within 72 hours after unprotected sexual intercourse, is now available to all women without the requirement that they first obtain a […]

Views on the Homeopathic Emergency Room

Okay, I’m pretty sure that many readers will already have seen this video, presenting a depiction of a “Homeopathic A&E” (i.e., ER) by comedians David Mitchell and Robert Webb. After all, at the time of writing, it had accumulated over 1,000,000 hits on YouTube. However, it is certainly worth storing […]

Breast milk, genes, and IQ

Few commercially produced health products offer as many benefits. According to popular—and medical—opinion, human breast milk is more or less a superdrug. Scientists agree that breast fed infants end up better nourished than formula-fed counterparts, are less likely to become obese, suffer less diarrhea, and have stronger immune systems. It is no […]

Football manager Ian Dowie, a loss to chemical engineering?

Professional football (soccer) manager, Ian Dowie, was until recently in charge of Hull City FC in the English Premier League.  One of his claims to fame is that he holds a degree in Chemical Engineering, and so is often described as being “the cleverest manager in football”.  But of course, […]

On jargon

It is true that science is more about falsifiability, objectivity, and empiricism, and less about white coats, bunsen burners, and laboratories. However, it is certainly the case that the common stereotyped view of most people is that  science focuses more on these latter superficialities than on the philosophical underpinnings. One feature […]