Cover of Francesco Sizzi's work

Jupiter's moons are invisible to the naked eye and therefore can have no influence on the Earth, and therefore would be useless, and therefore do not exist.

Francisco Sizzi, an Italian astronomer who lived during the 17th century, argued against the existence of the Galilean satellites of Jupiter, discovered by Galileo in 1610. In 1611, he published a book, Dianoia astronomica, optica, physica, qua Syderei Nuncij rumor de quatuor planetis à Galilaeo Galilaeo mathematico celeberrimo recens perspicillì cuiusdam ope conspectis, vanus redditur. Auctore Francisco Sitio Florentino, ("Understanding of astronomy, optics, and physics, about a rumour in Sidereus Nuncius about the four planets seen by the very celebrated mathematician Galileo Galilei with his telescope, shown to be unfounded."). His main argument was an astrological one (book page 16). In the macrocosm, there are seven planets: two favourable (beneficas) ones, two unfavorable (maleficas) ones, two luminaries, and unique Mercury, erratic (vagum) and indifferent (indifferens). In the microcosm, the human head has seven openings: two nostrils, two eyes, two ears, and one mouth. He also noted that there are seven days in the week, seven metals, etc. Given all these corresponding sets of seven, there was clearly no place for the extra planets that Galileo had claimed to have discovered. So they do not exist.

Although Sizzi's book was largely dismissed, Galileo was forgiving and Sizzi did go on to contribute to science, being credited with being the first to notice the annual movement of sunspots.

Sources: Wikipedia and Even geniuses make mistakes, New Scientist and Galileo Gleanings III, A Kind Word for Sizzi, Stillman Drake

Jupiter's moons are invisible...therefore do not exist - Francesco Sizzi, 1610

The phlogiston theory is a superseded scientific theory that postulated that a fire-like element called phlogiston is contained within combustible bodies and released during combustion. The name comes from the Ancient Greek φλογιστόν phlogistón (burning up), from φλόξ phlóx (flame). It was first stated in 1667 by Johann Joachim Becher and then put together more formally by Georg Ernst Stahl. The theory attempted to explain processes such as combustion and rusting, which are now collectively known as oxidation.

Phlogiston legacy

In the 1770s Carl Scheele was one of the first to identify hydrogen and oxygen (as well as molybdenum, tungsten, barium and chlorine), but because he followed the phlogiston theory, assumed that hydrogen was composed of phlogiston (a reducing principle lost when objects were burned) plus heat. Scheele speculated that his fire air or oxygen (which he found the active part of air, estimating it to compose one quarter of air) combined with the phlogiston in objects to produce either light or heat (light and heat were presumed to be composed of differing proportions of phlogiston and oxygen).

Joseph Priestley independently isolated oxygen from mercury oxide, which he called dephlogisticated air, rather than believing it to be a new element.

In France Antoine Lavoisier (1743-1794) performed similar experiments with the same substances. He got the same results as Priestley, but he was seeking a new explanation of combustion, so he saw his results from a different perspective. Lavoisier suggested that rather than phlogiston being given off when a metal rusted, or a substance burned, a more simple explanation was that Priestley's new gas, which he called oxygen, was being absorbed from the air.

Also during this time Henry Cavendish recognised the elemental nature of hydrogen. In the 1780s he accurately measured the composition of air where he concluded that "common air consists of one part of dephlogisticated air [oxygen], mixed with four of phlogisticated [nitrogen]".

It was not until the twentieth century that the last legacy of phlogiston was explained away with the new theory of combustion where heat was revealed to be a form of energy.
Lord Kelvin.jpg

William Thomson, Baron Kelvin,  (26 June 1824 – 17 December 1907) was an Irish mathematical physicist and engineer. He determined he temperature of absolute zero at -273.15C and the unit of absolute temperature is named in his honour. 

On 8th November, 1895, the German mechanical engineer Wilhelm Rontgen produced and detected electromagnetic radiation in a wavelength range know as X-rays. "Lord Kelvin was entirely skeptical, and regarded the announcement as a hoax."  

X-rays are hoax - Lord Kelvin, 1895

Wilhelm Röntgen Jackie Sleper Schalkwijkstraat Utrecht.jpg

 On 17 January 1896, having read Rontgen's Memoirs and seen the photographs, Kelvin wrote Röntgen a letter saying that "I need not tell you that when I read the paper I was very much astonished and delighted. I can say no more now than to congratulate you warmly on the great discovery you have made." 

Kelvin would have his own hand X-rayed in May 1896 and Rontgen went on to win the first Nobel Prize in Physics for his discovery in 1901.  

W.C. Hueper

"If excessive smoking actually plays a role in the production of lung cancer, it seems to be a minor one"

Dr. Wilhelm Carl Hueper, MD (b. November 4, 1894 - d. December 1, 1978) was a German medic in World War I and self-proclaimed pacifist. He completed medical school in 1920 at Rostock University, before finally moving to the United States in 1934.

Dr. Hueper was the first director of the Environmental Cancer Section of the National Cancer Institute, holding that post from 1938 to 1964. He tried throughout his career to bring attention to corporate efforts to disguise and hide occupational cancers caused by chemicals, especially industrial dyes, and asbestos. His 1942 work "Occupational Tumors and Allied Diseases" is recognized as the first medical textbook listing cancers and their occupational causes. He is the author of over 300 medical articles, editorials, chapters of books, and books on occupational and environmental cancer and in "Silent Spring" by Rachel Carson, Hueper is credited with being the first person to recognize the connection between pollution, occupationally-used chemicals and cancer.

In 1953 the Tobacco Industry Research Committee was formed by a group of tobacco companies and the public relations firm Hill and Knowlton. Their aim was to promote negative claims against the dangers of cigarettes. Part of their strategy involved identifying sympathetic scientists and encouraging their cooperation with the industry’s public relations campaign. When Hueper was to give a paper discussing “the lack of a proven link between lung cancer and smoking” at the Sixth International Cancer Congress in São Paulo, Brazil, in 1954, Hill and Knowlton contacted him. It was agreed that copies of Hueper’s paper would be distributed to media representatives and that the paper would be included in a standard public relations packet.

However, Hueper's arguments were intimately connected to his involvement in litigation over asbestos and other occupational carcinogens at the time. A defense commonly employed by the asbestos industry was to call attention to the victim’s smoking habits and argue that his lung cancer could have followed from his smoking rather than his asbestos exposure.

Sources: Wikipedia and Public Health Then and Now by Mark Parascandola, PhD

WHO on tobacco

T.A.M. Craven

There is practically no chance communications satellites will be used to provide better telephone, telegraph, television or radio service inside the United States. - T.A.M. Craven, commissioner of the Federal Communications Commission and Vice-President of Iowa Broadcasting Company, claimed in August 1961. 

Telstar 1 launched July 10, 1962