FROM Charles Seife
Separating Truth from Fiction in Science Last year, headlines all over the world claimed that eating dark chocolate would help people lose weight. The London tabloid, Daily Star proclaimed, "Eating Chocolate Can Help You Lose Weight;" the June issue of Shape magazine told readers, "Why You Must Eat Chocolate Daily." The story behind the hype was based on science. In fact, it was a ruse — designed to demonstrate how easy it is to circulate conclusions drawn from poorly designed studies that don't really prove what they claim to – and the bad science was passed along by reporters and editors who failed to check out the facts. How does the public know what to believe? It's a question as old as journalism, but harder than ever to answer in the age of the Internet. We hear how junk science finds its way into what look like reliable places that aren't what they seem.
Who's to blame for the opioid crisis? Some of the lawyers who took on Big Tobacco are now going after Big Pharma. It’s all about the deadly epidemic of opioid use. Are the drug companies to blame? What about the users? Later, on today’s Talking Point: making sense of Britain’s upset election.
Venezuela spirals into economic and political chaos Venezuela, a country whose potential for prosperity is unmatched, finds itself on the verge of civil war. What sustains the repressive government? With time running out, guest host León Krauze looks at what the international community can do to pull the country from the edge of collapse.
Trump plays scolder-in-chief with NATO allies At the opening of NATO’s dramatic new headquarters in Brussels today, President Trump acknowledged that Article 5 — promising that “an attack on one nation is an attack on all” -- has only been invoked one time: in the aftermath of September 11. But the President failed to provide what 27 other Alliance members have been waiting for: a re-commitment by America’s new leader to Article 5. Instead, they got a scolding.
Human Rights in the era of Donald Trump President Trump’s UN Ambassador, Nikki Haley, said today the US might pull out of the United Nations’ Human Rights Council. Serious violators of human rights are members of the Council itself–and a US resignation could make things worse. Later on today’s show, now that he’s into his second term, comedian turned US Senator Al Franken is telling jokes again.