Friday, November 16, 2012

Pseudoscientific Myths that People Believe Are True Science

How many times have you heard something come out of a person's mouth that they feel is honest true scientific fact with some being so bizarre that you wonder how something this patently ridiculous you have to believe that there is this person sitting somewhere, cackling, saying...OMG lets see if they believe this!  If you are like me, you have bit your tongue and kept your own council many times.  

I think it would be a hoot to collect the strangest and funniest.   First off, here are a few from the IO9.  Let's see if we can add to the list here.

Sound in a Vacuum (Thanks George...pretty much ruined real scientific curiosity single handed)
Or maneuvering jets  do not need an opposite jet fired to stop the maneuver. (granted it might be a bit advanced, but how hard is it to understand opposite and equal forces...)

oh and we have all heard of the girl in gold finger who died of suffication because her skin was fully painted and covered...(ummm lungs people.....)

But here is a STRANGE one....Sumo are trained to retract their testicles into their body...(really?  people believe that?  really?!!!)

And how many times have you seen the exploding car when it crashes... (one person recounts that at an accident, people insisted the driver be moved before the car exploded, even though the driver was not hauling anything explosive and was not on fire.....truth!)

I am sure there are millions more  ideas?!!!!


Anonymous said...

Any vehicle with a gas tank is carrying explosives. Vehicles that have been in collision are subject to ruptured fuel tanks, lines, etc. Any spark caused by a damaged wiring harness is an ignition source. Trained first responders regularly disconnect the battery in vehicles as a first step to allow them to stabilize the damaged vehicle and work safely on injured occupants.

Beam Me Up said...

See, that is called catching fire. Gasoline will NOT explode unless it is . aerosolized and subjected to atmospheric pressures greater that 3-1 ratios. It will burn, but even then not very efficiently that is why you will find it is not the fuel of choice for heating or any other various uses. First responders are instructed to disable the batteries only if there is imminent danger of fire...not explosion.

Remember an explosion is a rapid burn of the fuel, lets say potassium chlorate (not chloride mind you) has an extremely fast "burn" leading it in fact to be used in many low yield explosives, such as Plastic explosive. The yield was low because the burn was very slow. Where as something like Semtex or C4 are so energetic that their burns are rated in thousands of feet per second.

My point is that in NO way is ANY fluid in a car capable of burning with speeds even approaching that of the all but ancient plastique. Sorry, cars exploding after a crash are still in the realm of movie special effects, not real life.

Anonymous said...

Baked or fried, you're still cooked.

Beam Me Up said...

lol! ok, point your side dead on correct. If I gave indication I was making light of the responders or their due diligence, it was in no way deliberate. The article is about commonly held bogus science as fact, in no way did I mean to cast aspersionson a very needful portion of society.

Dave Tackett said...

How about those annoying "Tornado" necklaces that pro-baseball payers love. They are supposed to "promote stable energy flow throughout the body" but it's completely a placebo effect.

Hollywood myth - you'll explode or at least your eyes will bulge way out in a vacuum.

And of course, Astrology, crystalology, ghost hunting, quantum jumping, lucky charms (i.e. four leaf clover, not the decent cereal), burning sulphur to get rid of colds, and unfortunately, many, many more.

Phanriver said...

Funny just the other day I was listening to radio show in the car and they were discussing the Goldfinger myth, a guy called up and insisted it was true, "Mythbusters" proved it. Well I watch "Mythbusters" and I could swear they declared it "busted" had to look it up online, because you know not like that show is not taped and readily available online, yup not only did they declare busted once but did same myth on second show as so many people still argued it was true, declared still busted. As with the crop circles I remember people insisting "Alien Autopsy" was real even after they aired how it was all faked and how they did it. There is no amount of proof, logic or scientific evidence that will change the mind of someone that wants to believe something. And yes there is an unending list of those things people want to believe.

Beam Me Up said...

awwwwwwwww Dave, I was just going after crystalology! Plus I forgot all about the vacuum thing, yeah, where the heck did that come from...You know, people should know this anyway, people like fishermen. Hauling up fish from deep water with many atmospheres of pressure...I think the Cod's eyes pop, but that is internal pressure,

Phanriver said...

Oh yeah and the bumblebee, decades ago someone referenced bumblebee referring to fixed wing flight that it would not be able to fly. That one has long been passed around as example of both "miracles" and the failing of scientific community to understand the world. Of course bumblebees flight is both possible according to laws of physics and scientists have long understood how it is possible, but that one I do not see going away anytime soon either.

Beam Me Up said...

Phanriver that was my reaction too! I think any reaction that he had to being painted was a bit of a panic attack, but certainly not suffocation for christ sake! I guess you have to spell it out to these people....we haven't breathed through our skin since, well...since never! mouth, lungs...ya people really think we can breathe through our skin? Hey I got an idea..let put a plastic bag over his head and tell him to commence breathing!

Beam Me Up said...

Phanriver! Now that is GREAT! I didn't know that! I always wondered why someone would say that something is impossible when you see the evidence right in front of you. But a that makes sense.