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Skeptic Summary

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Skeptic Summary #104

By The Staff
Posted on: 8/13/2006

Our second Summer Spectacular!

Week ending August 12, 2006 (Vol 3, #31)

Welcome to the Skeptic Summary, a quick week-in-review guide to the Skeptic Friends Network and the rest of the skeptical world.

Of course, not just the week. This issue also happens to be the second anniversary of this SFN feature, and like last year, we will be bringing highlights from the whole past year along with our normal weekly items.

Forum Highlights:
Anyone heard of this? - One of the basic deceptions of the ID movement is revealed (again).

Are Penn and Teller spreading bullsh*t? - Sure, but the real question is whether it matters.

Armageddon-religious extremists & nuclear weapons - Like a giant, radioactive powder keg in the desert!

Editor’s Choice: Official 2007 SFN Psychic Predictions Contest - Come on folks, step up to the plate!
Hightlights from the Year that Was:
Anyone for 9/11? - And after that, the Kennedy Assassination!

Bend Dover, Insert Wedge - Important news in the war on evolution.

Can you be a good scientist and believe in God? - If a God-believing scientist fell in the forest…

A challenge: I’m skeptical of skeptics too - The SFN gets a visit from professional psychic Barbara With!

Communicating science, we can learn from Karl Rove - How to sell science and medicine: same crap, slap on a new label.

Creation/Evolution - The return of Bill Scott.

Derek at Skepticality… - Things are looking up, but he’s not out of the woods yet.

Excluding the Supernatural? - Okay, let’s go over the scientific method one more time…

Favorite example of transitional fossils - Those who can’t find any should just move along.

Matter and the Big Bang - Robb wonders, Mozina knows…

Mr. Hovid goes to Blacksburg - One of his 700+ lectures a year, I’m sure.

My argument against evolution - ASR asks “does Science + Philosophy = Emotion?” and eleven pages of confusion follow.

A Nice Summation of the Problem with ID - markie tries to find an intelligent argument for design.

Predictions for 2006 - Yeah, I know, I know…

Predictions from 2005 - Did the skeptics do better than the psychics? We don’t know, either.

Special Mention:Over 1,950 posts of disagreements over what constitutes science, and still going strong. When will it all end?
Post and Topic of the Year:
Fundamentalists HATE Noah’s Ark! - From the perspective of the SFN mission statement, there is so much good stuff to be found in filthy’s post and in the resulting discussion that it is nearly impossible to single out anything in particular.
Kil’s Evil Pick:
Welcome to Sincity, the web home of Penn & Teller - I don’t know what possessed me to choose this site this week…
Kil’s Evilest Pick:
Point of Inquiry: Interview with Daniel Dennett
Chat Highlights:
Sunday: “Guild Wars” online roleplaying game; pickled herring and fresh small potatoes with sour cream; radish and horse-raddish are different genus; voice-to-text recognition programs; accents.

Wednesday: Chat started out just fine: screwing over nieces, the unity circle and “Maresy-doats.” Then I said, “And I actually rented and watched Aliens, as instructed by some members here,” and then everything went to hell. From there on out, movies took over the rest of the night. And worst of all, I, not being a big movie buff and so not having watched most of the movies that were chatted about, now have a list of 27 must see movies. May we never bring up movies in chat again.

Come chat with us.
New SFN Articles this Year:
A Brief History of the Skeptic Friends Network - How did the Skeptic Friends Network come to exist?

Darwinism: Sorcery in the Classroom - An author makes an unsolicited attempt to spread the glory of God.

FMSF and SFN - Michelle and David get some blogged feedback on their FMS articles, and so begin the discussion anew.

So What? - What’s wrong with a few odd beliefs?

TAM4 - Flying, Foolish Behavior, Smart People, Food and Coffee.

Wellness in the New Age: an Expensive Obsession - Apparently, the New Age has become as commercialized as Christmas!
New Members This Week:
sack of kittens

And with that short list, we welcome 232 new members in the last year!

(Not a member? Become one today!)

Elsewhere in the World:
Bad Science

Science reveals secrets of invisibility

Sweltering July was second-hottest month in U.S. history

What’s New by Bob Park

Got some skeptic news items? Send them to us, and we’ll think about adding them.
Elsewhere in the Year:
Cause celebre

Darwin’s tortoise dies in Australia at 176 years old

A Fish with Fingers?

The Gospel of Judas

Infrared Glow of First Stars Found

Intelligent Design: It’s Not Even Wrong (by Rep. Rush Holt)

Is Natural Selection a Tautology?

Mass Media Bunk - 9/11 conspiracies and the war on truth

New Judge Jones Interview

Newspapers, commentators agree: Virginia, there is no War on Christmas

No one here but us Critical Analysis-ists…

What a difference a day makes
Book of the Week:
I Love Me, Vol. 1: S. Wordrow’s Palindrome Encyclopedia, by Michael Donner.

In honor of the hijack of this thread. Yes, we know it’s not “skeptical,” but sometimes it’s good to have some fun!
Book of the Year:
Breaking the Spell: Religion as a Natural Phenomenon, by Daniel C. Dennett

“In his characteristically provocative fashion, Dennett, author of Darwin’s Dangerous Idea and director of the Center for Cognitive Studies at Tufts University, calls for a scientific, rational examination of religion that will lead us to understand what purpose religion serves in our culture…”

— Publishers Weekly

This Week’s Most-Viewed Pages:
Forum Topics:
  1. Familiar Formula Afoot (513 views)
  2. Surface of the Sun (Part 9) (342 views)
  3. Guild Wars Online Fantacy Roleplaying game (280 views)
  4. Interesting atheist web site (260 views)
  5. How Quickly Will Bush Fumble the Cuba Ball? (246 views)
  6. Armageddon-religious extremists & nuclear weapons (214 views)
  7. Richard Dawkins on-line interview (211 views)
  8. Christianity and the cracks in the pot… (193 views)
  9. Landis and Testostrone (181 views)
  10. 21 arrested in new airline terror plot (146 views)
  1. Kent Hovind is a Big Phony! (86 views)
  2. Miracle Thaw — The Bogus Miracle (64 views)
  3. Cold Reading (43 views)
  4. You’re an Idiot (39 views)
  5. Skeptic Summary #103 (39 views)
  6. Evidence Cited as Hard Proof of the Existence of Satanic Cults (37 views)
  7. Why Do Creationists Fear Evolution? (30 views)
  8. The Bible Answer Man (28 views)
  9. Miracle Thaw Tray (28 views)
  10. Dr. Dino doesn’t like our Jack Chick spoof! (26 views)
There were 3,542 daily visitors this week.
Last Year’s Most-Viewed Pages:
Forum Topics:
  1. We never went to the Moon, Mars, Saturn, Titan (4,891 views)
  2. Owl on the dollar bill… (4,498 views)
  3. Investment schemes (4,230 views)
  4. We never went to the Moon, Mars, Saturn and Titan (part 2) (4,123 views)
  5. We never went to Mars, Saturn and the Moon (part 2) (3,922 views)
  6. Surface of the Sun (3,800 views)
  7. creation/evolution (3,769 views)
  8. Cassini/Huygens Mission Hoax (3,634 views)
  9. US governement behind 9/11 (3,452 views)
  10. A challenge: I’m skeptical of skeptics too (3,425 views)
  11. The Chinese like NASA buffoons (3,321 views)
  12. Favorite example of transitional fossils (3,314 views)
  13. Anyone for 9/11? (3,185 views)
  14. BlackLight Power Inc.: too good to be true? (3,147 views)
  15. Excluding the Supernatural? (3,047 views)
  16. Free for all (an all skate) (2,954 views)
  17. Evolving Planet (2,939 views)
  18. We never went to Mars, Saturn and the Moon (part 3) (2,682 views)
  19. Surface of the Sun (part 2) (2,592 views)
  20. Can you be a good scientist and believe in God? (2,550 views)
  21. Anyone seen ‘’? (2,541 views)
  22. A Nice Summation of the Problem with ID (2,463 views)
  23. Fundamentalists HATE Noah’s Ark! (2,452 views)
  24. The Divine Monster — III, 34 (2,432 views)
  25. Surface of the Sun (part 6) (2,324 views)
  26. Second law of thermodynamics (2,289 views)
  27. Cassini, a man-made satellite (2,257 views)
  28. Surface of the Sun (part 8) (2,200 views)
  29. Criminal George W. Bush (2,166 views)
  30. Bye bye, Roe v. Wade (2,159 views)
  31. Matter and the Big Bang (2,123 views)
  32. Surface of the Sun (part 5) (2,108 views)
  33. Morals, relative or absolute? (1,990 views)
  34. My argument against evolution (1,972 views)
  35. South Dakota Abortion Law (1,950 views)
  36. Poor kid (1,942 views)
  37. Surface of the Sun (part 7) (1,939 views)
  38. Surface of the Sun (part 3) (1,849 views)
  39. What’s this? (1,813 views)
  40. McCarthy was right? Communist threat lives? (1,789 views)
  41. Derek at Skepticality… (1,776 views)
  42. Introduce Yourself (1,758 views)
  43. Urban Dead (1,715 views)
  44. Bill O’Reilly Lies, for Snake (1,696 views)
  45. Matter and the Big Bang (part 2) (1,694 views)
  46. Cheney shot someone! (1,676 views)
  47. Letter to Dawkins about ‘The Root of All Evil?’ (1,675 views)
  48. War on Easter? (1,669 views)
  49. Mark it Down: June 6, 2006 (1,648 views)
  50. Surface of the Sun (part 4) (1,619 views)
  1. Miracle Thaw — The Bogus Miracle (3,512 views)
  2. Cold Reading (3,159 views)
  3. Kent Hovind is a Big Phony! (2,961 views)
  4. Why Do Creationists Fear Evolution? (2,535 views)
  5. Dr. Dino doesn’t like our Jack Chick spoof! (1,938 views)
  6. Evidence Cited as Hard Proof of the Existence of Satanic Cults (1,782 views)
  7. Miracle Thaw Tray (1,770 views)
  8. The Bible Answer Man (1,622 views)
  9. Evolution, Scientology Style (1,489 views)
  10. You’re an Idiot (1,323 views)
  11. The Bible’s Bad Fruits (1,178 views)
  12. Preaching that Anti-Evolution Propaganda (1,123 views)
  13. Tommy Debates the Bible Answer man (1,099 views)
  14. A Cherry Picker’s Guide to Choosing Evidence for Traumatic Repression or False Memory Syndrome (939 views)
  15. Skeptic Summary #39 (936 views)
  16. The Laundry Solution (921 views)
  17. Is the Speed of Light Slowing Down? (902 views)
  18. Evil Skeptic and a Visit to Awareness 2000 (885 views)
  19. The Fred Flintstone Hoax (824 views)
  20. The Biblical support for a Flat Earth and Geocentricism (782 views)
  21. The Legend of the Shrinking Sun (772 views)
  22. Evil Skeptic II: A visit to the Conscious Living Expo (753 views)
  23. Spam Scams and Slams (743 views)
  24. The Polonium 218 Controversy (700 views)
  25. Calorad (700 views)
  26. Kent Hovind is a Kwazy Kweationist (695 views)
  27. Changing our mind: a Bayesian Approach (682 views)
  28. New Conspiracy Theories (680 views)
  29. The Myth of the Missing Moon Dust (679 views)
  30. More on the Polonium 218 Controversy (667 views)
  31. Questioning the Validity of False Memory Syndrome (646 views)
  32. Astrology (619 views)
  33. Mesmer, Casino Monkey, and Video Sex (611 views)
  34. Fence-Sitting (595 views)
  35. Hank Hanegraff article (588 views)
  36. Are You a Bright? (578 views)
  37. Drug Companies and Patents (567 views)
  38. Intelligent Design, the modern argument (555 views)
  39. Evolution is a Lie (545 views)
  40. American Scientist Review (March/April 1998) (533 views)
  41. TAM4 (518 views)
  42. From Column to Blog (496 views)
  43. Wellness in the New Age: an Expensive Obsession (462 views)
  44. Letter To Florsheim (448 views)
  45. Evolution is a Lie, and you Skeptics KNOW it! (420 views)
  46. Spam Alert (419 views)
  47. Bible’s Bad Fruits a Cheap Shot (407 views)
  48. The Skeptic Friend’s visit to the ICR (405 views)
  49. 2nd Law of Thermodynamics Argument Weak on Both Sides (386 views)
  50. Hank Cleaned Tommy’s Clock for a Reason (369 views)
There were 188,188 daily visitors in the past calendar year.

More issues of the Skeptic Summary can be found in our archive.

The Skeptic Summary is produced by the staff of the Skeptic Friends Network, copyright 2006, all rights reserved.

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