Hilarious P-taking of homeopathic ‘theory’ here.
“Their account will ‘remember’ the millions we used to give them and they can then try to buy new clinics by telling the builders about all the money that used to be there.”
As I said this morning, I trekked down to the Royal Courts of Justice to cheer Simon Singh on his way into the beginning of the appeal against the BCA’s libel claim, along with plenty of other sceptics supporting English libel law reform (sign !!!).
The feeling was good and many of the crowd filed into the courtroom to watch the proceedings; in a way I wish I had, too, but a) had to get to work and get on with SCIENCE and b) apparently people who travelled from Leicester got turned away due to lack of space, so now I don’t feel bad for depriving them of seats.
The latest Jack of Kent blog post details some of the goings-on from today, including a heartening description of the support:
“… there were dozens and dozens more, just coming in and crowding in at the back. The usher even found ‘deck’ chairs for people to sit in the side aisle, and one bench usually reserved for lawyers and clients was just made over to the public.
It would normally take a major multiple murder trial, one lawyer told me, to have this many members of the public at a court hearing.”
Simon’s defence is recalled, followed by the important proviso that it may still be possible to lose, partly down to legal reasoning I do not have the capacity to understand, but let us remain positive for now.
The best bit is the recollection of the statements and questioning of BCA’s QC after lunch.
Here is also shown the wonderful quotation used by Simon’s QC and rarely have truer words been spoken:
Scientific controversies must be settled by the methods of science rather than by the methods of litigation…More papers, more discussion, better data, and more satisfactory models-not larger awards of damages-mark the path toward superior understanding of the world around us.
– Underwager v Salter, 22 F.3d 730
Overall conclusion: things are going well, but let’s not count our chickens just yet.
Also making for a good read: a wonderful description of the courtroom interior and scientist’s impression of morning proceedings, Stephen Curry’s account.
Next there’s Padraig Reidy’s account focussing on the well-made judge’s point that if there’s so much evidence for chiropractic, why on earth isn’t it published? As Mr Tim Minchin says, there’s a name for alternative medicine that’s been shown to work… medicine.
Also there’s Crispian Jago’s latest (and really rather entertaining) Science, Reason and Critical Thinking piece, now he’s no longer a ‘court virgin’, including my favourite para:
“Lord Chief Justice started off the afternoon by stating the he was buggered if he knew why the BCA didn’t just accept the Guardian’s right to reply instead of arsing around with a dumbass libel case that will end up costing some poor bastard a shitload of cash. At which point I would have given my football rattle a good spin, had I been allowed to bring it.”
This being another reason I’m kind of glad I didn’t stay to listen as it seems at many points I’d have wanted to jump up and shout woooo/hear, hear!/and how! etc.
Now some images for your entertainment (well, more for mine really).
… and one from Westminster SitP yesterday
[Edit: Yes, I do look a bit ‘special’ with the placard there (thanks, adama). I was giggling a bit. Why I occasionally think wearing my hair up is a good idea, I do not know. NB to self for the future.]