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Skeptic Summary

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Skeptic Summary #260

By The Staff
Posted on: 11/15/2009

Rising incidence, ages missing, passing the House, water quantums, ontology, politics, Sagan and more!

Week ending November 14, 2009 (Vol 6, #42)

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

Forum Highlights:
Allergies on the rise? - Might be something in the diagnosis.

Did the middle ages exist? - Yes.

House passes health care reform bill 220-215 - OMG, they’re stealing our liberties!!!1!!

Quantum Age Water - An extra oxygen atom in every molecule!

Editor’s Choice: Reality - The things that don’t go away when you stop believing in them.

From the Archives: The state of US politics - Two years later, it seems that they’ve gotten worse

Kil’s Evil Pick:
10 Neat Facts About Carl Sagan — Last Monday would have been Carl Sagan’s 75th Birthday. And I think the blog I have linked to, which includes Sagan’s last interview with Charlie Rose, a send up by Johnny Carson (who happened to have loved Sagan) and little tidbits like Sagan’s advocacy for marijuana, written under the Pseudonym “Mr. X” makes this an easy pick for me.

At least one of the “facts” has been called into question, but hey, the interview with Rose makes this pick worth the price of admission.

Happy Birthday Dr. Sagan. I doubt that you care anymore, but I do.

In every country, we should be teaching our children the scientific method and the reasons for a Bill of Rights. With it comes a certain decency, humility and community spirit. In the demon-haunted world that we inhabit by virtue of being human, this may be all that stands between us and the enveloping darkness.
— Carl Sagan

Chat Highlights:
Wednesday: It was a bit off an off week for chat, but this allowed for a much more personal conversation. We started off with forum talk and civility when talking to those of opposing creeds. As one might expect this evolved into New Atheists, and then even further to abortion in the bill on health care. Much of the rest of the night was spent talking about personal relationships and how to meet skeptics.

Come chat with us.

New Members This Week:
fat jape

(Not a member? Become one today!)

Elsewhere in the World:
700 Club’s Robertson: “Islam is not a religion, it is a political system … bent on world domination”

Big Placebo says Medicine never cures anything

Can Spirit be Freed?

The Evolution of the God Gene

Exploded: the myth of a miracle bomb detector

Iowa School Board ousts Intelligent Design

Jon Stewart Catches Sean Hannity Falsifying Footage To Make GOP Protest Appear Bigger

LCROSS Finds Water on the Moon

Rapid Star Formation Spotted In ‘Stellar Nurseries’ Of Infant Galaxies

Ten Questions to Ask Your Biology Teacher About Intelligent Design

Got some skeptic news items? Send them to us, and we’ll think about adding them.

Book of the Week:
Leaving the Land of Woo, by Bob Lloyd.

“The Land of Woo is that remarkable place where the world works differently, where cures are effected using undetectable energy sources, where healing apparently defies modern science. It’s a place where we are asked to believe in omniscient supernatural beings, who can change the physical laws of the universe on a whim. If you have ever been tempted to try homeopathy, or sample Reiki, or Ayurvedic medicine, or pray to a god, or take food supplements, or undergo detox, you should read this book. If it helps you avoid just one encounter with the Land of Woo, you will have saved money. But you will also restore your confidence in your ability to think rationally and take control of the major decisions in your life.”

— Product Description

This Week’s Most-Viewed Pages:
Forum Topics:
  1. The Supper
  2. PZ expelled from Expelled — Dawkins slips in!
  3. New World Order happening right now!
  4. Funny FAILS
  5. The shallow end of the gene pool…
  6. House passes health care reform bill 220-215
  7. Obama’s speech to schoolchildren
  8. Quote Mine warning propaganda poster
  9. Documentary: 1983 ‘Moonwalk’ was staged
  10. Reality
  1. Fundamentalists Hate Noah’s Ark
  2. Evolving a Venom or Two
  3. The Bible’s Bad Fruits
  4. Miracle Thaw — The Bogus Miracle
  5. Miracle Thaw Tray
  6. Scientific Truth
  7. The Biblical support for a Flat Earth and Geocentricism
  8. Evolution is a Lie
  9. Cold Reading
  10. Is the Speed of Light Slowing Down?
There were 23,720 daily visitors this week.

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 2008, all rights reserved.

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