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February 2008
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Study casts doubt on the existence of England

I just recently conducted a major study — well actually, I talked to 12 people — and I asked them about England. None of them had ever been there and most expressed doubts about the place. After all, it’s very vague. Is it a country or an island? Is it England, or Britain or the U.K. or part of the EU? Considering the undisputed fact that none of the study subjects had any first-hand knowledge of the place, it seems quite certain that it doesn’t exist.
“England’s existence isn’t as certain as some people would lead you to believe,” said lead researcher Pete Guither of the Ministry of Silly Studies.
So what nonsense am I leading to?
This

NEW YORK (Reuters Health) – Quitting marijuana can cause withdrawal symptoms as severe as those from quitting tobacco, a small study suggests.
The study, of 12 adults who were heavy users of both marijuana and cigarettes, found that stopping either substance triggered similar withdrawal symptoms. […]
“Marijuana is not as innocuous as some people would lead you to believe,” said lead researcher Dr. Ryan Vandrey, an assistant professor of psychiatry at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine in Baltimore. […]
The men and women in the current study, published in the journal Drug and Alcohol Dependence, used marijuana four times a day, on average, and smoked an average of 20 cigarettes per day.
None was in treatment or had any plans to quit either drug.

Um, you quit because you want to, and if you don’t want to and some scientist makes you stop, you’re likely to get irritable.
So we’ve got a grand total of 12 people, no inclusion of people who smoke marijuana without cigarettes, no reason for any of them to quit, and a quitting period of only 5 days. And that’s the study.
Why does Reuters print crap like this?

[Via]

Rosencrantz: I don’t believe in it anyway.
Guildenstern: What?
Rosencrantz: England.
Guildenstern: Just a conspiracy of cartographers, then?

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