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Skeptic Summary #276

By The Staff
Posted on: 3/13/2010

Opinions, borders, not-good stuff, buffoonery, oil, the Holocuast and more!

Week ending March 13, 2010 (Vol 7, #11)

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:
The ‘opinion’ thread - That’s just your opinion.

Palin Crossed Border For Canadian Health Care - Is that borderline hypocricy?

This ain’t good… - Which? The news or the debate arguments?

What's the best cure for "Stupid Buffoonery?" - How about a Darwin Award?

Editor’s Choice: Abiotic Oil and Gas - Excuses, excuses.

Kil’s Evil Pick:
The Holocaust History Project — This is a vast resource on the Holocaust, including documents from the period, eye-witness testimony from survivors and several Nazi leaders who admitted to committing the atrocities of which they were accused, the results from forensic archeological studies of sites where the death of millions took place, essays and a great section on holocaoust denial that lays to waste many of the claims offered by those who would like us to believe that the holocaust never happened.

The Holocaust History Project is well researched, and the referencing and citing are first rate.

This is the place to go, on the Internet, to learn about the holocaust, and a great reference for those who seek answers to the claims made by holocaust deniers.

The site contains many disturbing images and deals with a very dark chapter in our history. It’s a stark reminder of our ability to lose what we call our humanity, an issue of which we should always be aware.

Education has failed in a very serious way to convey the most important lesson science can teach: skepticism.
— David Suzuki

Chat Highlights:
Wednesday: HalfMooner is supraversive and must be stopped! Beer contains alcohol, and Tactical Nuclear Penguin contains a lot of it! The world was cowed by the giant inflatable beavers! Global warming can mean anything we want it to mean! Unbelievably sucky governors! We need to deal with the Nazi problem! Sometimes, email is really, really funny! Some routes from Seattle to LA are nasty! Onanism! dglas smacked down! Blood sugar levelling! And more!

Come chat with us.

New Members This Week:

(Not a member? Become one today!)

Elsewhere in the World:
The 5 Most Widely Believed WWII Facts (That Are Bullshit)

The 7 Most Horrifying Things Found in the Homes of ‘Hoarders’

Babirusas can get impaled by their own teeth

Bacterial Product Isolated in Soil from Easter Island Rescues Learning, Memory in Alzheimer’s Mouse Model

“Big supplement” lashes out, and John McCain caves in

Body mass index (BMI) as a measure of obesity and health: a critical appraisal

Chilean Earthquake Moved Entire City 10 Feet West, Shifted Other Parts of South America

Deadly Animals (Come to Australia)

Good to the last dropping: pitcher plant evolves to be shrew loo

I Am Angry

The Internet: Where religions come to die

New Digital Archive Study Aims to Create Permanence from the Web

No bugs were harmed in the media reporting of infested trains

A nutritional approach to the treatment of HIV infection — same old woo?

Rod Dreher and the Templeton “bribe”

Ruse on academic anti-Darwinists

The S-Team

Shop Teacher Suspended in Religious Dispute

The Skeptic’s Dictionary Newsletter #113

Social division with a vengeance

Texas BOE Removes Jefferson From History Standard

Thirsty Plants Text For Help

Webb Telescope’s First Primary Mirror Meets Cold Temperature Specifications, Sets Program Landmark

What’s New by Bob Park

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

Book of the Week:
Masters of Death: The SS-Einsatzgruppen and the Invention of the Holocaust, by Richard Rhodes.

“This is not for the squeamish. Rhodes, a Pulitzer winner for The Making of the Atomic Bomb, has pulled together a mountain of research on the mass murders of Jews perpetrated by the Einsatzgruppen special task forces organized by the SS commanders Himmler and Heydrich before the gruesome death camps industrialized the Final Solution. The catalogue of horrors, drawn not only from postwar memoirs and interrogations but also from the Nazi fanaticism for statistical detail, is profoundly appalling, even revolting: some of the malefic perpetrators were so sickened by the slaughter that Himmler set up mental hospitals and rest camps for the insufficiently sadistic. By January 1942, when the Wannsee Conference implicitly authorized the death camps, more than a million Jews crowded the killing pits, some of them later torched to conceal the massacres. Relatively few in the Nazi command structure would pay for their crimes. John J. McCloy, U.S. High Commissioner for Germany, Rhodes reminds us, reduced 10 of 14 death sentences in U.S. war-crimes trials, and by 1958 all surviving Einsatzgruppen defendants had been freed. German courts were also lenient. But he also suggests that genocide is new only as a word in the dictionary: ‘lThe Final Solution… was intended to be only the first phase of a vast, megalomaniacal project of privation, enslavement, mass murder and colonization modeled on the historic colonization of North and South America and on nineteenth-century imperialism but modernized with pseudoscientific theories of eugenic restoration.’ Thus Rhodes holds the mirror up.”

— Publishers Weekly

This Week’s Most-Viewed Pages:
Forum Topics:
  1. The Supper
  2. PZ expelled from Expelled — Dawkins slips in!
  3. Funny FAILS
  4. Scattershots: gargoyles & grotesques
  5. Quote Mine warning propaganda poster
  6. A literal jewish conspiracy
  7. How could this happen!
  8. The ‘opinion’ thread
  9. The shallow end of the gene pool…
  10. April 15 teabag parties — HOORAY!
  1. Fundamentalists Hate Noah’s Ark
  2. Evolving a Venom or Two
  3. Miracle Thaw — The Bogus Miracle
  4. The Bible’s Bad Fruits
  5. Evolution is a Lie
  6. Scientific Truth
  7. Skeptic Summary #275
  8. Kent Hovind is a Big Phony!
  9. Miracle Thaw Tray
  10. Cold Reading
There were 22,599 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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