Welcome to our archive of news stories relevant to the project of fighting fashionable nonsense. The stories are drawn from the electronic pages of the world’s media. On this page, you’ll find links to those stories that have been featured on Butterflies and Wheels during the current year. At the bottom of the page, you’ll find links to separate archives of stories from previous years.

We’re always pleased to hear about news stories that you think should be featured on Butterflies and Wheels. Just send an email here, if you want to point one out to us.

A note about links

Inevitably links go out of date. We suggest, therefore, that you make hard-copies of the stories that particularly interest you.

Claim Anything *

Dec 30th, 2002 | Filed by

Rael ‘once claimed that he travelled by flying saucer in 1975 to share lunch with Jesus, Buddha and Confucius’ and now claims to have cloned a human.… Read the rest

The Great Age of the Big Notion *

Dec 29th, 2002 | Filed by

The Lonely Crowd was one of a crowd of Big Idea books that were long on speculation but short on evidence.… Read the rest

A Skeptical Look at ‘Diversity Liberalism’ *

Dec 29th, 2002 | Filed by

A New Democrat thinks the US doesn’t pander to religion enough.… Read the rest

Meet Me at the Volcano *

Dec 28th, 2002 | Filed by

A sportswriter and race car driver discovers aliens speak French, starts new religion.… Read the rest

Separation of Politics and Science *

Dec 28th, 2002 | Filed by

Daniel Smith reviews Steven Pinker’s The Blank Slate in The Boston Globe.… Read the rest

Raelian Bishop Announces Cloned Human *

Dec 27th, 2002 | Filed by

Clonaid, connected to Raelian sect who say aliens created all life on Earth through genetic engineering, claims it has followed suit.… Read the rest

Do We Define Ourselves By Way of our Tastes? *

Dec 26th, 2002 | Filed by

Red wine or white? Lord of the Rings or Harry Potter? (Hang on, where is ‘neither’?)… Read the rest

Catholics Here, Protestants There, Please *

Dec 24th, 2002 | Filed by

Plan being considered to split Scottish school into two, one Protestant one Catholic, has local people worried.… Read the rest

Is Religion Adaptive? *

Dec 24th, 2002 | Filed by

Perhaps, or perhaps it’s a spandrel or a virus, instead, says biologist David Sloan Wilson.… Read the rest

Gossip Displaces Ideas *

Dec 24th, 2002 | Filed by

Shallow misunderstandings of Arendt, Heidegger, Foucault and others by writers more interested in laundry-inspection than analysis of thought.… Read the rest

Competing Goods *

Dec 23rd, 2002 | Filed by

Should conservation trump treaty rights, or the other way around?… Read the rest

Simon Hoggart is Not Amused *

Dec 22nd, 2002 | Filed by

What is the Observer doing running an astrology column, even though it is semi-jokey?… Read the rest

Economists Beginning to Learn: Humans Not Rational *

Dec 21st, 2002 | Filed by

The invisible hand is invisible, at least in part, because it is not there, says a winner of last year’s Nobel Prize in economics.… Read the rest

Don Boffin’s Cod Twin Study *

Dec 20th, 2002 | Filed by

Statistics, nature v. nurture, ethical considerations, Luce Irigaray: it’s all there.… Read the rest

Pseudo-investigation *

Dec 18th, 2002 | Filed by

A show of journalistic digging without the reality lets the powerful off the hook.… Read the rest

Abductees Go to Harvard *

Dec 18th, 2002 | Filed by

Do we construct memories of sexual abuse the same way we construct memories of alien abductions? Harvard researcher finds the question is highly political.… Read the rest

Scientists Against Boycott *

Dec 17th, 2002 | Filed by

The universality of science is too important to give up lightly, four Oxford professors say.… Read the rest

Unprized *

Dec 16th, 2002 | Filed by

Historian de-prized after panel concludes he did “unprofessional and misleading work.”… Read the rest

What Do You Mean, You Don’t Want Your Bones Back? *

Dec 15th, 2002 | Filed by

It’s not the indigenous peoples themselves who want their ancestors’ remains back, it’s caring academics who insist on returning them.… Read the rest

Manipulation *

Dec 15th, 2002 | Filed by

The therapeutic and market world-views converge, when “personal well-being” is our only goal.… Read the rest