links for 2008-11-26

  • Tania Bubela from the University of Alberta, Canada, led a team of researchers who investigated 201 pharmaceutical and 352 herbal remedy newspaper articles, and studied the 48 pharmaceutical and 57 herbal remedy clinical trials that the stories referred to. For both complementary and mainstream medicine, stories under-reported risk and lacked any disclosure of trial funding or scientists' conflicts of interest. Bubela said, "There were significant errors of omission of basic information such as dose, sample size and methods for randomized clinical trials. In addition, there is an under-reporting of risks, especially in the context of herbal remedies".
  • Germany is in better shape than many to weather the financial crisis. But, this column argues, it needs to raise private consumption with a substantial fiscal stimulus and higher real wages, lest it run the risk of slipping into combined stagnation and deflation.
  • Many academics, policy makers, and business leaders stress the importance of local conditions for explaining spatial differences in entrepreneurship and economic development. This column assesses the importance of various forces for agglomeration. The empirical evidence suggests that market effects, such as proximity to input suppliers and labour market pooling, play a big role, while there is less support for factors like entrepreneurial culture and industrial diversity.
  • A compendium of what services and companies are no longer available for our Internet pleasure and use.
    (tags: internet)
  • Today, the average size soft drink is 20 ounces and contains 17 teaspoons of sugar. More startling is that some citric acids found in fruit drinks are more erosive than hydrochloric or sulfuric acidówhich is also known as battery acid. These refined sugars and acids found in soda and citrus juice promote tooth erosion, which wears away the hard part of the teeth, or the enamel. Once tooth enamel is lost, it's gone forever. There is a beverage that does not produce such irreversible results. When deciding between the many options available, the best thing to drink is brewed tea, according to a study in the July/August issue of General Dentistry, the clinical, peer-reviewed journal of the Academy of General Dentistry (AGD).