Is there a gorilla on the loose in Alabama? (Updated: Nothing found)

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Hale County Sheriff’s Office searching for possible gorilla The Hale County Sheriff’s Office says they are searching for at least one gorilla. A gorilla was last spotted near a store on County Road 61 in Newbern. A dispatcher with the Sheriff’s Office said a crew consisting of the Newbern Volunteer Fire Department, police department, as…

Wakefield tries to sue BMJ and Deer, gets SLAPPed

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Brian Deer explains and speculates over this current legal mess: British journal to battle in Texas court over right of free speech. This anti-SLAPP motion was filed in Austin on 9 March 2012 bythe BMJ, journalist Brian Deer and editor Dr Fiona Godlee, againstex-doctor Andrew Wakefield and his latest “gagging writ” ploy Two months ago, Dr. Andrew Wakefield was…

News Brief from the week of March 4, 2012 [MP3]

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Here is an audio brief of last week’s highlights of the weird and wild news stories we posted. News Brief for 4-Mar-2012 Topics: Psychic Sally, Harold Camping, Monsters, the Titanic, mercury tainted products, Boiron settlement, Inhofe’s global warming hoax, mystery lights in Phoenix and Mayan pyramid Let us know if you like it, want to…

OK Skeptics protest John Edward show

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Skeptics take on renowned psychic in OKC – KFOR. More than a dozen skeptics from the University of Central Oklahoma stood outside in protest of John Edwards’ appearance in Oklahoma City. One skeptic said, “The truth of what’s going on isn’t necessarily there to back up these statements that are made.” Edwards is one of the country’s…

Animals have fun too: sliding snow bears

"WHEEEE...."

Thrill-seeking German bears snapped hurtling down snowy slopes | Metro.co.uk. These two European brown bears seemed to be having the time of their lives sliding on their backsides in the snow in front of stunned onlookers. It seems even bears enjoy a snow day, as the pair of bears frolicked in the snow acting like…

Ancient machine gears embedded in rock? Nope. Crinoid fossils. (Update: hoax)

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Brazil Weird News: Machine dated at 400 million years found in Russia. In the remote Kamchatka peninsula, 200 km from Tigil, University of St. Petersburg archaeologists discovered a strange fossil. The authenticity of the find has been certified. According archaeologist Yuri Golubev, occurs that, in this case the discovery surprised scientists by its nature, at…

Nude raccoon rescued in Canada

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CottageCountryNow Article: Gizmo’s nakedness an unsolved mystery. She had found a very strange-looking animal in her shed, huddled up in a corner, and wondered what it was and what she should do about it. It was described as bald except for its face, and with ears that appeared bigger than a raccoon’s. She was very…

Sometimes, the weird picture is REAL

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I’ve long held that NO amount of photo evidence is going to be good enough to prove UFOs, Bigfoot, ghosts, and the like. Photos can be manipulated so easily and often are, just for fun and for purposeful hoaxing. But, sometimes the pictures ARE real. Here is a neat essay by Joe Schwarcz. Joe Schwarcz:…

Phoenix “news flash” and other high lights

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Two stories out of Phoenix today about mystery lights. Curiously, it’s the 15th anniversary of the Phoenix Lights incident with a new documentary set to premier. First, a mystery flash… Mysterious Light Flashes During Traffic on Fox 10 A bright light appeared during one of Andrea Robinson’s traffic hits Thursday morning. Fox 10 checked with…

Caramel coloring accused of causing cancer (Bring back Crystal Pepsi?)

Photo from Wikipedia

Heard about this scare story? Sodas Contain Animal Carcinogen, Study Finds Today’s leading cola beverages contain high levels of a substance linked to cancer in animals, according to new research. An independent study commissioned by the Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI) uncovered 4-methylimidazole, or 4-MI, in Coke, Diet Coke, Pepsi and Diet…

Inhofe knows only God can change the climate; calls global warming idea arrogant.

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Inhofe: God Says Global Warming Is A Hoax | ThinkProgress. In a radio interview with Voice of Christian Youth America, Sen. James Inhofe (R-OK) argued that his belief that global warming is a hoax is biblically inspired. Promoting his book The Greatest Hoax: How the Global Warming Conspiracy Threatens Your Future, Inhofe told interviewer Vic…

Hate groups on the rise fueled by belief in conspiracies

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The ‘Patriot’ Movement Explodes The radical right grew explosively in 2011, the third such dramatic expansion in as many years. The growth was fueled by superheated fears generated by economic dislocation, a proliferation of demonizing conspiracy theories, the changing racial makeup of America, and the prospect of four more years under a black president who…

Durham County UK saves you from having to fret about the number 13

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Durham County Council bans ‘unlucky’ 13 for homes House builders will no longer have the tricky task of selling number 13 to superstitious buyers after a local authority banned the reputedly unlucky address. Durham County Councillors (U.K.) agreed to the decision at a Cabinet meeting yesterday, which will apply to new builds and conversions in…

Boiron settlement – just the start of admitting there is nothing to homeopathy? (UPDATED: Call to remove products)

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Saw this story a few days ago but the link to the news was behind a pay wall so I didn’t post it. Quackometer provided this writeup: Boiron Settles for $12M to Stop Homeopathy Lawsuits | The Quackometer. …faced with six consumer class actions, Boiron has now decided to set aside $5 million to refund…

Shark Cartilage: Now REALLY not worth it

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Shark Cartilage May Contain Toxin – NYTimes.com. Shark cartilage, which has been hyped as a cancer preventive and joint-health supplement, may contain a neurotoxin that has been linked with Alzheimer’s and Lou Gehrig’s disease. Scientists at the University of Miami analyzed cartilage samples collected from seven species of sharks off the coast of Florida. The…

China’s Bigfoot (the Yeren) used in tourism ploy

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Home of Chinese ‘Bigfoot’ seeks to boost eco-tourism chinadaily.com.cn. Shennongjia, a forest region and long rumored home of the elusive Bigfoot-like ape man in the central province of Hubei, wants eco-tourism there to boost the underdeveloped region’s economy. Less than two months after the Shennongjia Nature Reserve was named a national 5A-Class Scenic Spot by…

What not to wear: clothes that make you blue

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Happiness: It’s Not in the Jeans You may throw on an outfit without much thought in the morning, but your choice is strongly affected by your mood. And the item of casual wear in almost everyone’s wardrobe — denim jeans — is what most people wear when depressed, new research from psychologists at the University…

Darwinian deception debunked

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The Darwin-Wallace Mystery Solved: Darwin Vindicated from Accusations of Deceit A National University of Singapore study has traced historical shipping records and vindicated Darwin from accusations of deceit. For the past four decades, Charles Darwin had been accused of keeping the essay of fellow naturalist Alfred Russel Wallace for a fortnight, thereby enabling him to…

Woman claims raw diet is her fountain of youth

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70-Year-Old Woman Looks Like She Just Turned 40 Thanks to Vegan Diet and Rainwater …in the news is another 70-year-old who seems to have found the secret to eternal youth, only hers doesn’t imply using growth hormones and testosterone. Annette Larkins doesn’t look a day over 40, thanks to the diet and lifestyle she maintains. She looks…

US Military wants to develop soldiers’ “spidey sense”

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US Military Seeks Sixth Sense Training | Soldiers Battlefield Intuition | LiveScience. Ordinary soldiers have sometimes shown a battlefield sixth sense that has saved lives in Afghanistan and Iraq. Now the U.S. military wants to better understand that “spidey sense” and train troops to tap their inner superhero instincts. The U.S. Office of Naval Research…

Miracle weight loss solution probably doesn’t exist. (This is news?)

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Most Weight Loss Supplements Are Not Effective http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/03/120306131646.htm An Oregon State University researcher has reviewed the body of evidence around weight loss supplements and has bad news for those trying to find a magic pill to lose weight and keep it off — it doesn’t exist. Melinda Manore reviewed the evidence surrounding hundreds of weight…

End to Camping’s End of the World Predictions

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Harold Camping Admits Sin, Announces End to Doomsday Predictions. After numerous failed doomsday predictions, Family Radio founder Harold Camping announced this month that he has no plans to predict ever again the day of God’s Judgment. He also issued an apology to listeners, admitting that he was wrong. “We have learned the very painful lesson…

FDA warns about high mercury in skin products

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Consumer Updates > Mercury Poisoning Linked to Skin Products. Federal health officials are warning consumers not to use skin creams, beauty and antiseptic soaps, or lotions that might contain mercury. The products are marketed as skin lighteners and anti-aging treatments that remove age spots, freckles, blemishes and wrinkles, says Gary Coody, national health fraud coordinator…

Na na na na naaa! These nagas aren’t real.

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ShukerNature: MODERN-DAY NAGAS…OR PHOTOSHOPPED FRAUDS?. According to Hindu and Buddhist mythology, nagas are ancient serpent deities that can take human or semi-human form, and in Buddhist mythology a naga can have several heads. They are most often represented as huge cobras with expanded hoods. Needless to say, however, no such thing as a multi-headed cobra…

“The aliens made me do it!”

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Police: Man blames aliens for assassination threats to governor EVERETT Wash. — Police said a man who wrote a threatening letter to the governor claimed to be under the influence of aliens. The Washington State Patrol unit that provides protection to Gov. Chris Gregoire was forwarded a request for reconsideration letter from the Office of…

Ouija movie greenlighted; conjures up horrifying ideas of what THIS will be like

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Universal Puts OUIJA Back on Track with PARANORMAL ACTIVITY Producer for 2013 Release. Almost two years ago, a bevy of board games were targeted for big-screen adaptations. Stretch Armstrong, Monopoly, Candy Land, Clue, etc. have all been in the development line towards big-screen adaptations, but recently (and on the heels of the release of Battleship) movement on the aforementioned projects has slowed. McG was…

Traditional Chinese Med chief fails to realize what century this is

M. Silverberg/TRAFFIC Southeast Asia, Associated Press

In an astounding piece whereby my jaw hit the floor… I’m giving Mr. Wang an “Epic fail” designation Top TCM chief defends bear bile medicine. China’s top traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) chief defended medicines made from bear bile citing a lack of an effective substitute. Wang Guoqiang, vice-minister of health and director of the State…

What exactly does this question mean? The missing details in survey results about Bigfoot and Nessie.

Credit: Guy Edwards at Bigfootlunchclub.com

Two stories appeared last week in a blog by Douglas Todd in the Vancouver Sun. Both reference surveys done by Angus Reid regarding belief in creatures… One of five Canadians believe in Bigfoot (Sasquatch) | Vancouver Sun. One out of five Canadians believe the legendary Bigfoot stomps through the forests. Americans are even more inclined…

Alaskan orange goo mystery solved

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Mystery of Alaskan “Goo” Rust Solved at Last | The Artful Amoeba, Scientific American Blog Network. Last fall the small Alaskan coastal village of Kivalina was inundated by a mysterious orange “goo”(click for photo). Locals and others suspected a toxic algal bloom (see here for image), or perhaps some sort of chemical release, or millions…