One day, this worm may save your life

An arm of anti-inflammatory research is looking at _Schistosoma mansoni_, a worm that infects humans in tropical areas. As it turns out, people infected with this worm are much less likely to develop conditions, for example asthma-like conditions in the lungs, which result from an inappropriate inflammation. However, becfore you grab your own _S. mansoni_, do realize that it modulates the human inflammatory response for a reason — so it can do its parasitic thing. Beneficial anti-inflammatory qualities aside, the worm can take you down.

However, as this worm gives up its secrets, we’ll have another tool against inappropriate inflammatory responses, at least of the type your body gives off.

Now, we just need something that protects us from the inappropriate inflammatory response that Orac gives off when he’s challenged.

Now this is fascinating

As a general rule, I’m against government interfering in religious affairs. However, in this case, I think that religious establishments ought to watch this program to install monks into malls (this is Thailand) so that religion is more accessible.

Straw man

And serving up a double …

_Straw man_: an argument which equates any objector to the “skeptic”:’s way of thinking to the most crazed, tinfoil-hat-wearing, irrational, illuminati-believing nutcase there is.

The radical materialist’s fallacy

It’s been a while, so I thought I’d make another entry into the skeptic’s skeptic’s dictionary.

_Argument from incredulity_: The skeptic doesn’t believe it, therefore it’s false.


75% of infants have a reflux problem by 4 months of age. That’s the bad news. The good news is that 10% have a problem at a year of age. Apparently 4 months is the peak.

And infant reflux, as the “Apostropher”: might say, is teh suck.

It’s hard to say I’m sorry

Prima Donna Rep. Schmidt apologizes, but will the rhetoric be a hard habit to break? This seems like something that comes along once in a lifetime, and we can stop the hurtin’ if we can do it more often. Please hold on, all you people against the Iraq war. Maybe we can get Congress to withdraw troops even if they have to stay the night to do so. Remember the feeling of unity after 9/11, and you’re the inspiration to apply that unity to positive change, rather than political games.

Which one did I miss? No peeking!

To the genius who took the time to write a script that uses my other website to send spam

I hope

* some hacker named Bjorn steals your credit card number and drains your account from your ill-gotten gains to buy rave drugs online and have him shipped to his parent’s basement where he and his loser friends try unsuccessfully to score.
* your computers catch the BIOS virus and bite the dust.
* your companies are forced into bankruptcy by minor government employees who have nothing else to do and who are so cranky at having to work 9 to 5 in a dark cubicle that they laugh at you as you have to turn over your license.
* some clumsy Dept. of Transportation clerk named Hilda accidentally spills her coffee on the computer, whereby it short circuits and adds 5 outstanding warrants for DUIs to your driving record, and finally
* some bitter police officer named Hank finds those outstanding warrants, tracks you down, grabs you by the nape of the neck, hauls you into the pokey, and gets his first promotion in 10 years by doing so.
* during the 80 agonizing years you’re in the pokey, everybody forgets about you and you realize and feel the full brunt of the realization that you’ve contributed nothing useful to society.

And trust me, this is a much nicer fate than some other people would wish upon you.

Once upon a time, it didn’t suck

Remember “Stuffit™”: It used to be the _de facto_ standard for compression on the Macintosh. I remember the good ol’ days when you really had to have Stuffit or Stuffit Expander to make sense of any program off the internet.

Well, I’ve been using either .zip, .dmg, or .tgz formats for a while. But I had to get Expander for Windows to decompress one odd .sit file. And after several attempts, I found out that you have to get a trial version of a paying program to get the Expander, which is supposed to be free. And if you want to deinstall the paying portion of the program, you get rid of Expander, too. Teh 14|\/|3. What’s worse, the installation, without telling me, changed the preferred program for all my .sas files. As a regular SAS user (and someone who likes a little control over my computer), I get quite annoyed when things start screwing with my SAS file associations.

On the Mac, at least as of Panther (confession, I haven’t upgraded to Tiger yet), Expander comes preinstalled, and it’s pretty much out of the way until it’s needed.

Maybe we should run Shakespeare through a L33TSP34X filter

SMS will PWN yr Shakespeare!

Internet resource for studying religions

Internet Sacred Text Archive Home

This is a very nice collection of sacred texts, and they offer a CD of 1000 texts for $50. They are free online.