Suicide by Zoom — Technology and Dehumanization

abortion, assisted suicide, California, coronavirus, Culture & Ethics, dehumanization, Humanize, Medicine, Meera Shah, New York State, oncologists, Oregon, oxymoron, pandemic, patients, Philadelphia Inquirer, Planned Parenthood, silver lining, suicide, Technology, telehealth, telemedicine, Wesley Smith, Zoom
Some have seen a silver lining in the pandemic and welcomed its encouragement of medicine practiced online, potentially freeing doctors to work across state borders, and widening access to care (or virtual care) generally. I’m not sure that’s to be celebrated in its entirety. The trend toward “telehealth” undercuts the crucial personal relationship between doctor and patient, which had already been in retreat before the virus came along. There are other downsides, too, including lethal ones. As the Philadelphia Inquirer reports, “The pandemic is helping U.S. abortion-rights advocates achieve a long-standing goal: Make it easier for women to use pills to end pregnancies up to 10 weeks.” Get your abortion pills online — what could be more convenient? NPR approves, quoting New York physician Meera Shah with Planned Parenthood: “I…
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Lancet Hydroxychloroquine Paper Scandal Illustrates Scientific Bias, Not Only in Medicine

Atheism, censorship, confirmation bias, coronavirus, COVID-19, Donald Trump, Evolution, Evolution News, human evolution, Human Origins, hydroxychloroquine, Indiegogo, James Todaro, Latin America, LinkedIn, Macroevolution, malaria, materialism, Medicine, Michael Behe, Microevolution, Neurodynamics Flow, origin of life, Sapan Desai, scientific culture, Surgisphere, The Guardian, The Lancet, The New England Journal of Medicine, World Health Organization
If you’ve ever wondered how much of high-stakes science is politicized, reflecting the ideological views of the scientists involved despite all their insistences to the contrary, look no further than this. A blockbuster paper in the leading British medical journal, The Lancet, reported increased mortality associated with the “controversial” malaria drug hydroxychloroquine, being tested for use against COVID-19. Why would a malaria drug, of a value that has yet to be determined, be controversial? You already know the answer: it’s because of the identity of the medicine’s biggest cheerleader. He Looked Them Up on LinkedIn In briefest terms, scientists drew on shady data from a previously obscure company, Surgisphere, operated by a skeleton crew with a questionable Internet profile. Having won the approval of the journal’s expert peer reviewers, they…
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The COVID Crisis and Our Healthcare System

borders, boroughs of New York, China, COVID-19, elderly people, Europe, experts, government planners, healthcare, Iran, Italy, Manhattan, mass transit, Medicine, mortality, New York City, nursing homes, officials, pandemic, patients, prisons, Queens, socialism, Staten Island, statism, United States, Venezuela, Wuhan, xenophobia
An essay by a pair of economists in Foreign Policy magazine pins the blame for our pandemic crisis on deficiencies in our health care system. It recommends a variety of interventions, each of which (predictably) entails more government control of health care by experts like… the authors of the essay. To see the COVID response as signifying a failure of the healthcare system is an insult to the brave and skilled people who responded so effectively to this virus, including colleagues at my own hospital on New York’s corona frontline. The authors, and others who think similarly, misunderstand the roots of the crisis and misunderstand the role the health care system has played. More importantly, they misunderstand the role of statism in generating this pandemic.  Retooled Overnight Given the unexpected…
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Thomas Aquinas Weighs in on the Coronavirus and Public Policy

Andrew McDiarmid, China, coronavirus, COVID-19, double effect, Evolution News, health, ID The Future, Medicine, neurosurgeon, pandemic, Podcast, policymakers, political calculations, public policy, science, Thomas Aquinas, transparency, WHO
On a new episode of ID the Future, host Andrew McDiarmid speaks with pediatric neurosurgeon and professor Michael Egnor about public policy decisions regarding the coronavirus. Download the podcast or listen to it here. In a conversation based on a recent article for Evolution News, Egnor says scientists should have “stayed in their lane,” giving policymakers the information that science can provide about a potential pandemic, and left the political calculations alone. He argues that WHO failed in one of its primary jobs, which is providing timely information and recommendations for preventing and slowing the spread of pandemics. They sat on information about COVID-19 for weeks, long after they knew there was a serious problem in China. Egnor also urges policymakers to apply science along with other expert information in a…
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Stephen Meyer: Teach the (Coronavirus) Controversy

Biola University, Center for Science & Culture, coronavirus, COVID-19, Daniel G. Murphy, Douglas Axe, Economics, Eran Bendavid, Harvard University Medical School, Hull York Medical School, Jay Bhattacharya, John Ioannidis, John Lee, Knut Wittowski, lockdown, Marcello Pera, Martin Kulldorf, medical opinion, Medicine, Red Team, Rockefeller University, Scott Atlas, St. Barnabas Hospital, Stanford University Medical Center, Stephen Meyer, Team B, The Federalist, White House
Our colleague and CSC director Stephen Meyer has a terrific article up now at The Federalist. As readers will know, when it comes to evolution education, the Center for Science & Culture advocates “teaching the controversy.” Note Meyer’s application of the “Teach the Controversy” principle to how medical opinion is being given to U.S. leaders who make policy decisions about a national response to COVID-19. As Dr. Meyer observes, “The administration’s virus taskforce has recommended only a gradual lifting of stay-at-home orders and has established criteria for full re-opening that could take months to satisfy in many states.” His proposal is that rather than listen only to a group of experts with one set view, it would be productive to listen to another group as well, a “Team B,” or “what…
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COVID-19, Random Mutations, and Aristotle’s Matrix of Design

Andrew McDiarmid, Aristotle, bodies, coronavirus, COVID-19, Evolution News, ID The Future, Intelligent Design, Medicine, Michael Egnor, mutations, neurosurgeon, philosophy, Podcast, purpose, random events, viruses
On a new episode of ID the Future, host Andrew McDiarmid speaks with neurosurgeon Michael Egnor about Dr. Egnor’s recent Evolution News article, “The Coronavirus Demonstrates How Evolution Presupposes Intelligent Design.” Download the podcast or listen to it here. Egnor notes that the coronavirus and other viruses are not, strictly speaking, considered living things, even if they depend on living hosts for their continued existence. Egnor also discusses the role of random mutations in viruses and draws upon Aristotle to argue that these and other random events only occur, and have their meaning, against a backdrop of purpose and design — in this case, the designed systems, the bodies, that viruses invade.  Image: Aristotle, by Francesco Hayez (1811) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons. The post COVID-19, Random Mutations, and Aristotle’s Matrix of Design…
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From Pfizer, Scientism and Self-Congratulation

art, authority, Brian Miller, C.S. Lewis, China, coronavirus, COVID-19, Creativity, Discovery Institute, Douglas Axe, economic collapse, entertainment, history, mask, medical science, Medicine, Michael Egnor, music, pandemic, Pfizer Inc., philosophy, Politics, religion, Rich Lowry, Robert J. Marks, scientism, social distancing, totem, Wesley Smith, worship, Wuhan
In the race to defeat the coronavirus, good fortune to Pfizer Inc., among others. The drug giant said last week “it will begin testing of its experimental vaccine in the U.S. as early as next week.” But this new ad from Pfizer goes over the top in its self-congratulation: They say: At a time when things are most uncertain, we turn to the most certain thing there is: Science. Science can overcome diseases, create cures, and yes, beat pandemics. Because when it’s faced with a new opponent, it doesn’t back down. It revs up, asking questions till it finds what it’s looking for. That’s the power of science. Well actually, that’s the power of creative ingenuity in general, a capacity unique to human beings, that is put to use in…
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We Need to Worry About Suicide Contagion, Too

contagion, crisis, Culture, Culture & Ethics, economic hardship, economy, ethics, Medicine, National Center for Health Statistics, population, report, suicide, suicide rate
The National Center for Health Statistics has published an alarming report about the increasing suicide rate — which has been increasing at 2 percent per year since 2006. From the report (my emphasis): This report highlights trends in suicide rates from 1999 through 2018. During this period, the age-adjusted suicide rate increased 35%, from 10.5 per 100,000 U.S. standard population in 1999 to 14.2 in 2018. The average annual percentage increase in the national suicide rate increased from approximately 1% per year from 1999 to 2006 to 2% per year from 2006 through 2018. Our ongoing suicide crisis is a reminder. Economic hardship breeds suicide, which as I have argued in the past, can also be a contagion. Photo credit: Road Trip with Raj via Unsplash. Cross-posted at The Corner. The post We…
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