Monday, 4 July 2011

One in, one out

It's with some sadness that I see Carl Philips has announced a hiatus for his blog Ep-ology. At the start of the year Carl took on the challenge of writing one post a day about epidemiology and 'unhealthful news'. Six months on, he has amassed an archive that is essential reading for anyone interested in how epidemiological research is conducted, peer-reviewed and published in the real world, and why the media reports it so badly.

Hopefully Carl will be back in the near future, but whatever he does, he's left a body of work that is worth catching up on. If you haven't been reading him this year, do it now. It's witty and incisive stuff and is much more in the spirit of skepticism than some of the self-proclaimed skeptics' sites out there.

I should also mention Dave Atherton's new(ish) blog Lifestyle Reviews. Dave is a regular commenter here and elsewhere, and he's great at unearthing little-known studies and reports.

On Saturday he looked at the claim that supermarket booze has got cheaper since 2007. This, of course, is a reason/excuse often given for why so many pubs have closed in the UK since the smoking ban. Although often given, few people have bothered to check whether it's true. Dave has, and according to his figures, there hasn't been any real change. If true, this is interesting not only in the context of the smoking ban but in the context of the supposed rise in binge-drinking (which is a myth anyway). Go take a look.


Lysistrata said...

I noticed that he'd decided to stop for a while as well. A shame, but you are right, there's a whole pile of excellent stuff there already: a must-read blog.
And I sincerely hope you're not thinking of stopping. WE NEED YOU. You and Michael McFadden both.
Thanks for all your work.

Anonymous said...

I wonder if we are going into a period of the last desperate gasps of authoritarianism. There is no clarity yet. Certainly, it seems to be the case in the Middle East that the rule of the 'Emperor' is coming to and end, along with the 'force majeur' that goes with it. it seems to me that 'Healthism' is only an intermediate state, which is necessarily required to replace 'Emperors'. It is a stage that needs to be gone through before sanity finally reigns.

The enjoyment of tobacco is just the easiest target for the new Emperors to attack. They will succeed for a while with this easy target, but the more hysterical the attack becomes, the more stupid it becomes. And when the new Emperors move on to the next target, people are already prepared to some extent.

In a sense, I do not really care about smoking as such. What worries me is the minds of our grandchildren.

Anonymous said...

Hi Chris thanks for the plug and add to your blogroll.

If anyone wants to write a guest post they are very welcome, Rollo Tomassi is "Editor-In Chief" after all. :)

Dissent and debate is very welcome and unmoderated.

Anonymous said...

I've been reading Carl's blog on and off for some time and agree that it's now a truly valuable archive of insight and research. I just hope he doesn't delete it all.

I also hope he wasn't disheartened by the relative lack of comments. He didn't allow anonymous commentators and I don't have a Google account. His latest comment, about re-formatting the blog posts into book form, sounds like a great idea though.

Dave, I read your blog avidly too.