Links for April 2nd

The vaccine/autism theory may be dead, but the treatments live on.

A federal court may have changed the public discourse about the safety of vaccines in February, when it dismissed the theory that they cause autism. But vaccine damage is still the reigning paradigm for a rump caucus of thousands of parents who turn to physicians with a remarkable set of beliefs and practices in hope of finding recourse for their children’s ills.

I really wish this were an April Fools’ Day joke…

Yesterday, given the release of Jenny McCarthy’s new book espousing antivaccinationism and autism quackery and the attendant media blitz the antivaccine movement has organized to promote it, I predicted that a wave of stupid is about to fall upon our great nation.

Well, the stupid has landed. And how. An interview with Jenny has just been published on the TIME Magazine website in which she “surpasses” herself. In fact, so dense is the stupid emanating from what passes for a “brain” in that empty head of hers that words fail me. Suddenly, my favorite snarky analogies about “black hole of stupid, beyond whose event horizon no intelligence or science can pass,” “waves of neuron-apoptosing stupidity,” or “the stupid, it burns thermonuclear” (or supernova or hypernova) all seem woefully inadequate to the task of describing the sheer magnitude of the stupid that issues forth from the interview.

Parents ‘impose countryside ban’

Nervous parents are making the countryside “out of bounds” for their children, a survey has suggested.

Natural England produced the survey, called One Million Children Outdoors, to launch a project encouraging children to visit the countryside.

It found less than 10% of children played in natural places, compared to 40% of adults when they were young.

Shift in anti-film piracy tactics

The UK film industry is changing the focus of its fight against piracy.

A series of adverts warning people against the offence have been withdrawn and replaced with a campaign thanking the public for their support.

The Industry Trust says cinema and DVD sales rose in 2008 and its campaign message “You wouldn’t steal a car… piracy is theft” transformed attitudes.

I absolutely hate that piracy “ad” although it’s not as bad as the one they use on our House DVDs that suggests that piracy funds terrorism. Of course it does. Idiots.

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