Skeptical Fails and Wins This Week

Hello Skeptifans. Here are the Fails and Wins in the media this week.

Is this giving you a headache?

Grave ‘witcher’ is an invaluable resource for genealogical society
Lorne sent in this story. It profiles a man who is a grave witcher. That’s like a water diviner, but for dead people. The article goes on and on about this guy’s amazing successes at locating lost remains, sorting out old graveyards, etc. Then, at the very end we get this line: “Not that anyone’s ever dug up a grave to prove Mavins right or wrong.” Uhh…that’s right. People rely on him to locate unmarked graves so they can mark them..but they don’t actually check that anyone is actually buried there!

Reversal on drug trial disclosure policy draws fire
Paul sent in this story. Looks like the Canadian Institute for Health Research has reversed a policy implemented a couple months ago that requires the results of all drug trials to be published, regardless of their success. This policy has obvious benefits to the public, as it would mean access to more data. The article goes into more detail on the policy and what happened to it.

Wind turbine foe vows to defeat Liberals

Wind Concerns Ontario is a group devoted to stopping wind power. Why? Because they say the turbines cause various ailments such as headaches and sleep problems. Just like the cellphone tower resistance and the wi-fi hysteria, the evidence for their view is all anecdotal. When real science is done, no evidence is found that the turbines generate anything but electricity. They are definitely a group to keep an eye on.

That’s the Fails and Wins this week, folks! See you next week, and don’t forget to send me your links to links [at] skepticnorth [dot] com.

2 Responses to “Skeptical Fails and Wins This Week”

  1. Erik Davis says:

    The worst part of that grave witcher story is that the president of the Manitoba Genealogical Society, Kathy Stokes, is using him to do actual historical work. This is just embarrassing.

    Is it possible that organization is run by an 8 year old? Because adults shouldn’t believe these things.

    Actually, my 8 year old wouldn’t either.

  2. Cameron M. says:

    I wrote an email the the MGS to see if they can explain their position on this matter. I will post here if I receive a reply.


  • Melany Hamill

    Melany proudly uses the titles of both geek and nerd. As a science-enthusiast and fan of debate, Melany likes to get her facts straight. She graduated from the University of British Columbia with a degree in Chemical Engineering. Since then her career path has meandered to its current spot as a project manager at a video game studio. Melany lives near beautiful Vancouver, British Columbia. She is not seeking treatment for her caffeine addiction.