On Charleston

I don’t normally post on social media about horrific events as they happen, simply because I never have anything profound to say. Expressing my outrage here simply does nothing for the people who are actually suffering, and it doesn’t make me feel any better. But I’ll say this about Charleston, coming on top of all […]

Health Update: Suspended Attention

After last November and December’s adventures in cancer world, it isn’t surprising that I get a lot of questions about my health and emails wishing me well, often based on incomplete information.  Of course since I have incomplete information, that’s no wonder.  So here’s some slightly more complete information. We’re back to watch and wait.  Ideally, […]

Some Suggestions for Improving the Humanities Dissertation and Defence at McGill

…or at least the dissertation in Communication Studies. How do you improve the dissertation and the defence?  A few weeks back, the faculty members in Communication Studies at McGill met to talk about the graduate curriculum and these topics came up.  But some changes we would like to make would be impossible in the current […]

More on Cancer, Luck, and Behavioural causes

A day later, I’ve been pointed to some nice writings but scientists and statisticians. See here: http://pb204.blogspot.co.uk/2015/01/science-by-press-release.html A few things become clear: 1) the coverage is of the press release, not the actual paper but 2) there are still major problems in the assumptions of the paper.  The “luck” appears to be mostly an artifact of […]

Medical Research as Ideology: Cancer is Luck

A new Johns Hopkins study finds “luck” as a major cause of cancer. This is a great example of how medical research turns social conditions into inevitability and writes ideology (the order of things is given and unchangeable) as if it were science. While there is talk of personal responsibility as a possible cause for […]