ACSH Science Dispatch Podcast

Thirty years ago, the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) launched a PR campaign against a plant-growth regulator called Alar, effectively eliminating the use of the chemical in agriculture. What's the legacy of this infamous anti-chemical scare? The New York Times continues to attack good scientists on the say-so of environmental groups. The paper is trashing its credibility.

"It can disappear in a moment," Dr. Chuck Dinerstein said after his near-fatal battle with a pulmonary embolism. How should our mortality influence our worldviews? Unregulated medical devices may put patients in harm's way. Why is the Cleveland Clinic parroting anti-vaping talking points from the Truth Initiative?

Is marijuana really the low-risk drug that many Americans believe it is? Emergency room physician Dr. Roneet Lev says the popular conception of cannabis—as an all-natural treatment for pain, anxiety, seizures, and so many other ailments—is far too simplistic. She joins us on episode 25 of the Science Dispatch podcast.

Some cancers can be detected based on the fungi that grow within tumors, researchers say. Could this discovery lead to a life-saving screening technique? ACSH debated a pair of "fat acceptance" advocates on Dr. Phil. Let's take a closer look at the discussion.

Yet another study shows that Neurontin is a poor substitute for prescription opioids, so why do physicians continue to prescribe it? Twitter recently put a warning on an ACSH obesity story. Is social-media censorship here to stay?

Will taking cocoa or multivitamins slow the onset of dementia? A new study suggests at least one of these interventions may make a difference. COVID lockdowns quickly became a topic for partisan bickering, but did they actually work?

Artificial intelligence may help physicians identify patients at risk for Parkinson's Disease (PD) before symptoms develop, improving health care and possibly zeroing in on potential causes of PD. Restricting access to technology can generate disastrous consequences. Why, then, are 'green' politicians so eager to ban these useful tools?

China is 'seeding' clouds to increase rainfall and fight a severe drought. Will it work? A large body of research shows that soda taxes are ineffective, so why do public health experts continue to endorse them? Finally, has climate change increased the number of heart attacks we suffer? No.

Many Americans are obsessed with nutrition or totally disinterested in it. Why are these extremes so common? ACSH contributor David Lightsey joins us to explain. Public health officials committed many blunders during the pandemic. Part of the problem may have been the incomplete and often inaccurate information they were working with. How can they avoid the same errors next time around?

Recent news reports have spurred concern that just touching fentanyl can be dangerous. Let's take a look at the chemistry behind this claim. Comedian Bill Maher recently attacked the fat-acceptance movement as a danger to public health, sparking ferocious criticism on social media. Sadly, few people recognized the most important point about Maher's commentary: he was right.