chemicals

Two weeks ago, we reported on a bizarre decision by the online news arm of the journal Science: The outlet had reprinted an article from a politically slanted environmentalist website that hyped concern over a particular chemical. The article fell quite short of the high standards we associate with the journal.

Now, Live Science has done something similar, but it's far worse. Normally a reliable source of information (and an outlet with which ACSH has a reprinting agreement), Live Science published an article that is a dream for anti-pesticide and anti-chemical fearmongers.

The...

The online news arm of the journal Science is a solid source of information. However, recently it made a very strange editorial decision that could potentially harm its reputation.

Yesterday, Science reprinted an article that was provided by E&E News, a website that bills itself as "a news organization focusing on energy and the environment." That's true enough, but it also seems to take a particular viewpoint on energy and the environment, specifically that green energy is the way to go and the environment is full of scary chemicals. The reprinted article quoted only Democrats, and E&E seems to have...

There can be no better example of the damage done by quackery masked as "alternative medicine" than the tragic case of Chad Green. In 1977, at age two, Green was diagnosed acute lymphocytic leukemia (ALL). At that time the cure rate for childhood ALL with chemotherapy was about 50%. Now it is about 90%. Chad Green died in 1979, a victim of uninformed parents and quacks that exploited them.

For the full story, which is heart-wrenching, I cannot recommend highly enough the first chapter of Dr. Paul Offit's book, "Do You Believe in Magic? The Sense and Nonsense of...

NYT's Nicholas Kristof sure knows how to live harder, not smarter. He's been avoiding chemicals and living clean — as he puts it — for several years. And yet, the results from an at-home detox kit that tested his urine for chemical exposure came back less than stellar. 

I am a prophet.

Last year, I wrote an article titled, "Panera Bread Takes A Page From 'Food Babe's' Playbook." The Food Babe is the unscientific guru who says that we shouldn't eat food that contains ingredients that we can't pronounce.

The bogus "clean food" movement has seized upon that idea, and soon after joining the bandwagon, Panera Bread launched an advertising campaign mocking chemistry.

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The New York Times has some of the worst science coverage in the nation, its Tuesday section notwithstanding. The Times shamelessly promotes alternative medicine and organic food while scaremongering over "chemikillz" and trashing scientists who work in biotechnology.

There's a reason for that. Not only is the paper trying to appeal to its elite, Upper West Side clientele, but the New York Times's publisher, Arthur Sulzberger Jr., is married to Gabrielle Greene, who is on the board of Whole Foods. In May...

The Environmental Working Group (EWG) uses an authoritative sounding name to peddle scientific half-truths and outright fabrications. Along with Greenpeace and PETA, it is beloved by activists but detested by scientists.

Several years ago, George Mason University surveyed 937 members of the Society of Toxicology, an association of professional toxicologists. Nearly 4 out of 5 (79%) of those responding said that EWG -- as well as the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) and Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI) -- overstate the health risks of chemicals.

Despite this vote of no confidence in EWG by the scientific...

Alex Trebek: "An insulting term you call a company that sells 'natural chemical' bracelets which supposedly protect kids from mosquitoes."

Contestant: "What is ... A bunch of dirtbags?"

Alex Trebek: "Correct!"

Just another day. Chemophobia and its frequent partner, sleazy marketing rise again. This time it's a real beauty. And, the timing is just right — the beginning of a mosquito season, which could end up being quite unique, depending on how Zika behaves (1).

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The language of science has been hijacked. Those who are looking to make a quick buck (or in the case of the organic industry, 43 billion bucks) have no qualms about twisting the definition of highly precise scientific terminology to suit their own profit-driven agendas. Misinterpreting scientists’ words is also a common tactic employed by fearmongering environmentalists and activists.

In fact, the problem of hijacked scientific terminology is so great that ACSH’s Dr. Josh Bloom wrote an entire book about it.

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George Washington may be the only popularly elected ruler in history who, when his supporters offered to crown him King, relinquished his power instead. Politically speaking, that was a very unnatural thing to do.

Historically, federal agencies have not surrendered their power, even after their congressional mandates were accomplished. Instead, they have invented new problems to solve, thereby justifying their continued existence.

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) was created by Congress in 1970 to write and enforce regulations designed to protect the environment and, by extension, human health. The Agency for Toxic Substances...