Podcast: Peer Review, Bob & Ray Do Statistics, Academic Calls For Killing Of (Post-Birth) Babies

Science Gone Wild with William M Briggs
Science Gone Wild with William M Briggs
Podcast: Peer Review, Bob & Ray Do Statistics, Academic Calls For Killing Of (Post-Birth) Babies


Show Notes

Wired’s PubPeer article. PubPeer.com itself. PubPeer’s discussion of “Macroscopic Observability of Spinorial Sign Changes under 2π Rotations“.

Bob and Ray can be found at, inter alia, the Internet Archive, which is also where you can find today’s snippet.

Getting to be the worst person you can see if you’re worried about your health is a “doctor.” These fellows are now and increasingly killing people who come to them—especially in post-Christian Europe, in places like The Netherlands, Belgium, and Luxembourg. But here, too, in Oregon, Washington, and Vermont.

And if people like Udo Schuklenk have his way, it’s going to get worse.

The abstract of Schuklenk’s Journal of Thoracic and Cardiovascular Surgery article.

You can read about Heterotaxy Syndrome here.

The lecture from which Schuklenk’s clips were gathered.

Happy Birthday Frank Sinatra, and Merry Christmas.

Bonus! The podcast is also at YouTube (YouTube also says the video is blocked in Germany because of the 30 second Sinatra clip). I’ll work on restoring my iTunes feed. Maybe. Download the MP3.

Update It is to this level of podcasting perfection to which your host aspires.


  1. James

    Great podcast! You definitely have the voice for these sorts of things. The Bob and Ray bit was fantastic. If you like that sort of comedy, you may like the Clarke and Dawe interviews.

    Here is an example: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3m5qxZm_JqM

  2. Who knew there was Atheist TV on YouTube? The internet has certain opened up whole new worlds for people, hasn’t it? (Except those wanting to listen to Frank Sinatra Christmas songs on YouTube–copyrights or something, I would guess.)

    The debate over severely deformed infants is nothing new. It probably began with severe Downs Syndrome and worked through multiple other handicaps. In part, medicine became too good–keeping alive people that are nothing but shells (Briggs-please don’t hyperventilate…..). It became more problematic when society decided one should not have to suffer any misfortune or discomfort, which lead to a call to simply kill the infant right away. I suspect in the past, that was routinely done but not discussed. Before there were forensics, one could just quietly suffocate the infant. The modern world has shown a light on the practice now–forensics can show suffocation. Whether it’s right or wrong? Personally, I’d call it wrong. Leads to the idea that whatever is a pain or a severe challenge should just be eliminated and that people should not have to deal with things they don’t like, living or not. Perhaps the most interesting thing is people will get up in arms over someone killing a dog, but not a “subhuman” that managed to make it out of the womb.

    I have to ask–how does one get as jacked up as Alex Jones? Is it pharmaceutical? 🙂
    Don’t get me wrong. I do find him interesting and a bit scary, but no one should be that animated!

  3. John B

    James said : You definitely have the voice for these sorts of things

    Agreed – Almost reminiscent of some of those great Disney documentary voice-overs.

    Sheri said : I suspect in the past, that was routinely done but not discussed.

    Heinlein mentioned that as prerogative and duty of the mid-wife in his book : Farnham’s Freehold

  4. Gray

    Bob and Ray are among the great comedians. Their Slow Talkers of America bit makes one squirm with anticipation.

    Suggestions for the podcast:
    1. cut it to 15 minutes, keep to one subject, and make it a bit snappier (e.g., throw in a few puns or quick cuts to Bob and Ray lines within your narrative.)
    2. use a few more images; it is a video podcast after all. The ones that grace most of your posts are very entertaining.

    Yeah, it’s more work, but production values count.

  5. Briggs


    I’m thinking about a live appearance with the man himself, it being close to Christmas.

    But there’s no images here. YouTube requires one, which is why I forced one onto the program.

    John B/James,

    Best voice over is the guy in The Gods Must Be Crazy.


    You watched!

  6. Tim

    Thank you for the podcast, Briggs. Please keep them coming!

  7. OzWizard

    All I get is “File not found 0.00”.
    Maybe its a copyright blocker for us in Australia ?

  8. Briggs


    The server may be acting up. Could you please try and download the podcast (link is at bottom). Let me know if you can or can’t see it.


  9. OzWizard

    Downloading MP3 link worked, partly, stopping after Bob & Ray.
    I found the YouTube version best.
    The in-built Widget performed variously badly in Mozilla, Chrome and IE11, usually not playing, or otherwise truncating, the file.

  10. Briggs

    Thanks, Oz.

    Problem seems to be my server (Yahoo). I don’t have the top of the line package, and sometimes while downloading large files (this one is about 25 MB) it hiccups. Marry that to a cheap player with no cache, and you have to start over each time.

    Only way I can fix it is to buy better services (not so likely at this time) or continue mirroring on YouTube.

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