The Kensington Review

30 July 2007

Latest Commentary: Volume VI, Number 91
Report Says NASA Let Drunk Astronauts Fly -- The National Aeronautics and Space Administration used to be the “can-do” part of the federal government. Putting Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin on the moon proved that. And if further evidence were necessary, when Apollo 13 had an explosion in its oxygen tanks, everyone came home alive. But that was a long time ago. Now, a report says NASA let astronauts fly drunk on more than one occasion. It is time to reassess just what the agency exists to do.

Australia Frees Doctor in Glasgow Bombing Investigation -- The Australian authorities released Dr. Mohamed Haneef after detaining him on charges of supporting an extremist organization. His second cousin was allegedly part of the attack on Glasgow airport, and he had bought his relative a SIM card for his mobile phone. After a month’s detention, the Australian Chief Prosecutor dropped the charges. It turns out the SIM card was found not in the burning vehicle at Glasgow's airport, but quite a distance away in Liverpool. That seemed to be the only evidence the police had.

US GDP Rises While Dow Jones Plummets -- The US government announced last week that second quarter GDP growth was up 3.4%. This surprised analysts who expected something less dramatic. As Reuters reported, “The strong growth figures helped lift stocks into positive territory in early trade but they later slipped as credit worries reemerged.” From Monday to Friday about 4% was wiped off the equities markets, and the GDP news couldn’t reverse it. What does it mean when GDP goes up and the stock market still drops? It means that the market stopped listening to common sense.

Lancet Pot Study Appears to be Bad Science or Bad Journalism -- The British medical journal The Lancet published a study on Friday that suggests even infrequent use of marijuana could increase the chance of serious mental illness by 40%. If true, this would be a major change in medical knowledge, and it would have to be addressed legally. However, a careful reading of the report shows that the researchers’ headline claim vanishes in the articles details. It seems there is a case of bad science or bad journalism at work here.

© Copyright 2007 by The Kensington Review, Jeff Myhre, PhD, Editor. No part of this publication may be reproduced without written consent. Produced using Fedora Linux.


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