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Scheherazade in Blue Jeans
freelance alchemist
Tell me your favorite disproven or discredited theory. Mathematical,… 
31st-Aug-2009 01:21 pm
Hearth
Tell me your favorite disproven or discredited theory. Mathematical, scientific, sociological, whatever. Hit me.
Comments 
31st-Aug-2009 05:28 pm (UTC)
Phlogiston. Because it's fun to say "phlogiston".
31st-Aug-2009 06:00 pm (UTC)
I second phlogiston.
31st-Aug-2009 05:32 pm (UTC) - Y2K Bug
That is was going to be the end of the world and the new Millenium was going to be a return to the Dark Ages--due to the Y2K bug destroying all data across the banking and financial industry.

I suppose it is my favorite because I was there for it, and really got quite the hoot out of the extremes some people/companies/countries went to make sure the would be "OK".
31st-Aug-2009 05:34 pm (UTC)
There are alligators in the sewers.
31st-Aug-2009 05:38 pm (UTC)
IT is aerodynamically impossible for bumblebees to fly.
31st-Aug-2009 05:40 pm (UTC)
The Luminiferous Æther, in part because of the spectacular failed experiment that proved its non-existence, and hinted at General Relativity.

(Seriously, a giant marble wheel afloat on mercury, how is that not awesome?!)
31st-Aug-2009 05:43 pm (UTC)
Homeopathy by far, because when it was new, it was a way to treat a patient that was better than standard medicine, but today it's obviously not.
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31st-Aug-2009 06:12 pm (UTC)
There's no such thing as a black swan
31st-Aug-2009 06:32 pm (UTC)
HIV doesn't cause AIDS.

related:

AIDS was cooked up in a government germ-warfare lab. (often with the added garnish that it was targeted at African-Americans and/or homosexuals.)
31st-Aug-2009 06:48 pm (UTC)
That ergotism might have caused the Salem witch hysteria. (Disproved/rebutted by Spanos and Gottlieb within a year, but it persists 30 years later)
1st-Sep-2009 06:21 pm (UTC)
Thank you thank you thank you.

Ever since reading Boyer and Nissenbaum's Salem Possessed in my History of Urban America class at UMaryland (where, by the way, I studied Dedham), I have HATED the ergotism theory.

I mean, cmon, considering none of the gangrenous symptoms were in evidence ...
31st-Aug-2009 06:49 pm (UTC)
7-day young Earth creationism.
31st-Aug-2009 06:52 pm (UTC)
Aether.
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31st-Aug-2009 07:21 pm (UTC)
Bunnies!
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