A glowing report on radiation.

A little radiation may actually be beneficial for humans, according to this piece by Ann Coulter.

“Hormesis” is the beneficial aspects of radiation. I looked it up at Wikipedia and it has not been debunked. I say Ann Coulter should go & have a tour of the Fukushima nuclear plant. What say you?

It’s an interesting idea. In practical terms though even if the idea turns out to be correct you are still better off avoiding radiation if you can, to leave yourself a safety margin. What if you irradiated yourself to the ideal level of exposure, and only later found out you needed an x-ray?

Even if true, I prefer to get my therapeutic radiation from my doctor, not the local nuke plant blowing up.

Since by definition a therapeutic dose would have to be carefully controlled that goes without saying. I wouldn’t try to get a cup of water from a flash flood, either.

There’s no evidence to suggest that I’m aware of that’s a hormetic radiation effect. There’s no threshold for safe radiation exposure - a single stray radioactive particle can (if you’re really, really unlucky) knock around a gene on a cell that eventually turns cancerous.

The only possibility of a hormetic effect is if the body responds in some way to a very low dose of radiation by activating some sort of protective effect that has other health benefits, and those outweigh the small exposure. But there’s no suggestion to suspect such a mechanism.

More fine work by scientist Coulter.

IMHO, it’s unfortunate that Ann Coulter has come out strongly on this. There may be something to radiation hormesis, but a lot more study is needed to know - we’re just making guesses at the moment. Ann Coulter’s endorsement is just going to make the idea seem crackpot.

Read the Wiki page on it. Yes, it’s just Wiki but it’s interesting.

That’s one hypotheses, not a confirmed fact. Considering that we evolved with a constant exposure to background radiation, it isn’t at all unreasonable to think we’d have some resistance.

Actually, yes there is; it isn’t proven, but there’s some lab data suggesting it.

Even an idiot can be right by luck. Just because she says something on a subject she’s clueless about doesn’t mean it’s right or wrong. Which is too bad, if she was always wrong we could use her to confirm or deny all sorts of theories theories by asking her her opinion and assuming the opposite. :smiley:

Scientist: “Is there life on Mars?”

Coulter: “Yes.”

Scientist: “Damn!”

Why does it not surprise me this hypothesis originates with the French Académie des Sciences? They don’t have a vested interest in all nuke, all the time.

:rolleyes: So now your argument is that the French are all part of some vast pro-nuclear conspiracy.

PZ Myers tells you how Ann Coulter may be right about one little thing, but still an irresponsible idiot on the whole. It’s a bit like concluding, from the fact that light predation of an animal herd may, through killing off weaker individuals, strengthen the reproductive fitness of the herd overall, we should go around killing animals because it’s good for them.

Japan should collect all the radioactive fish and crops and feed them to Colter . She would be so much more healthy then.

Nice straw man, but saying France is pro-nuke is like saying France is pro-grape.

Neither a conspiracy, nor a surprise.

Science has methodologies. Science asks others to replicate results, to review what has been said, to try to add more information to the puzzle. The French Academy of Sciences is unlikely to simply forge data to make it seem as if small dose radiation is okay, since very likely the subject will be followed up upon by others. They’d ruin their scientific reputation and if anything cast more negative publicity on nuclear and radiation issues.

Besides that, it doesn’t even make sense. They’re not saying “hey, turns out radiation is good for you, so every tuesday let’s let our reactors run unshielded” or even just “hey, no big deal if a core melts down” or something. If there’s a radioactivity hormesis effect, if it were ever used for treatment it would be with specialized devices that very carefully controlled it, so it has no bearing on France’s stance on nuclear power.

He’s right to essentially call you a conspiracy theorist - what you’re proposing goes against what you’d expect an organization of that type to do, they’d quickly be rebuked by other scientific authorities, and it doesn’t even have anything to do with nuclear power. But you’re proposing a radiation propoganda conspiracy from respected scientific institutions because hey, France likes nuclear power. Yep, it’s the Nuclear Establishment brainwashing us. Der Trihs was right to dismiss you as he did.

The Institut de France (of which the Academie is a part) is autonomous, so it’s not as though it has a vested interest itself in endorsing nuclear safety. You might as well say the CDC or NIHS are biased because they’re government agencies.

Nonsense. You would expect France to study wine and come out with reports extolling its virtues. You wouldn’t expect Saudi Arabian scientists to do the same, now would you?

Hardly a conspiracy theory.

Then you grossly imply we should tolerate leaking nuclear power plants on the premise “a little radiation may be good for you.”

The nuclear industry isn’t a conspiracy; it’s a scam, with a lot of gullible naive followers. The tobacco companies used to say cigarettes were good for you. That’s not a conspiracy, it’s just the way it is, until a biased conspiracy theorist calls bullshit.

“France” is not a giant monolithic entity that thinks as a hive mind. Good science is good science - it has no national interests. Either that body responds to small doses of radiation with a hermetic response or it doesn’t.

I can’t believe I have to explain this basic stuff to you. There’s so many flaws it’s hard to describe them all. Science is neutral and subject to retesting. Scientists in France are not all in lock step to cook data to make nuclear look somehow better. Even amongst the people in France there’s varying support for nuclear power. There is no “France” hive mind. Even if there was, saying there’s a hermetic effect to small doses of radiation does not somehow excuse nuclear plants releasing radioactivity. France isn’t now cooking the data to say “radiation is good for you” to convince people later that potential nuclear leaks are a good thing.

You take all these things for granted - not only are they not logical and not logically connected, even if it were the case, it would require a grand conspiracy for scientists in France to cook their data because France happens to have a lot of nuclear reactors, and then it would require the rest of the scientists in the world to not follow up or confirm their findings, or not call them out on it. Where is there not a conspiracy in there?

Who said anything about France cooking data?


You did. You said the scientists at the academy of sciences was doing bad science to support a point that was wrong to justify their country’s use of nuclear power. Clearly if they’re coming to the wrong conclusions on purpose they’re cooking the data to suit their needs, right?

It’s cute that you want to say “next” though as if you refuted, well, any of my points about your long list of errors, let alone all of them.
Edit: I also forgot to address that in your previous post you said “Then you grossly imply we should tolerate leaking nuclear power plants on the premise “a little radiation may be good for you.”” - and I did nothing remotely like that, you may want to reread.