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Skeptic Summary #298

By The Staff
Posted on: 9/4/2010

Glenn Beck, weird eyesight, cruddy cure, Bad Universe, a thoughtful blog and more!

Week ending September 04, 2010 (Vol 7, #33)

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:
Beckaploosa: it’s ON, baby! - Parallells lacking between Beck and King.

Hey, four-eyes! - Keeping a bifocal eye on evolution.

Sea Bands - Will woo acupressure help against morning sickness?

Editor’s Choice: Bad Universe - Don’t miss an episode!

Kil’s Evil Pick:
She Thought: Women. Thinking critically — This has become one of my two or three favorite blogs. She Thought was created by Heidi Anderson as “a place to discuss, promote, encourage, and celebrate women in science, skepticism, and critical thinking.” A nice description of the blog and the reason for it can be found in this interview with Anderson conducted by Desiree Schell who does the great Skeptically Speaking radio show and podcast and is also a contributing blogger to She Thought.

The list of contributors to She Thought is like a who’s who of women in skepticism (plus Ben Radford, go figure). Most of these women (and Ben) have their own blogs or are affiliated with some skeptical website or skeptical organization.

A major area of concern in our community has been the overwhelming predominance of men in leadership positions as skeptics and role models. The good news is the number of women doing active skepticism is growing. And this site offers a perfect example of how important their contribution to the skeptical community is. The blog posts are generally excellent. I’m a fan!

If you feel the need to mention that something goes without saying it probably doesn’t.
Crimes Against Logic, by Jamie Whyte

Chat Highlights:
Wednesday: Chat colors; the Skepticality forums now include invisible text and upside-down posting; Mab is back on nights; Top Gear, weird races and the Nürnburgring; the Discovery Channel hostage situation and the Discovery Institute’s stupid response; firing Ricky; Dragon*Con; Jonathan Safarti Sarfati; Rachael Maddow and the Teabaggers; the long weekend; getting kids to read; work, and God not being necessary.

Come chat with us.

New Members This Week:

(Not a member? Become one today!)

Elsewhere in the World:
6 Famous Unsolved Mysteries (That Have Totally Been Solved)

Abortion Eliminated?

Acupuncture quackademic medicine infiltrates PLoS ONE

Altruism can be explained by natural selection

Belief in Witchcraft Widespread in Africa

Early man ‘butchered and ate the brains of children as part of everyday diet’

Earth’s Animals Face Grim Future

Faith-healing couple pleads not guilty in death of son

Heaps of Fossils From Evolutionary ‘Big Bang’ Discovered

The History Channel

Hubble In Popular Culture

If the world is going to hell, why are humans doing so well?

Is Believing In God Evolutionarily Advantageous?

Keeping up appearances

Lomborg v Lomborg

NASA’s Kepler Mission Discovers Two Planets Transiting the Same Star

No link between vaccines and autism, appeals court rules

‘Orphan’ Film Adoption Fears Unfounded

The secret history of psychedelic psychiatry

Secrets of the gecko foot help robot climb

Stephen Hawking: God was not needed to create the Universe

Ten Essentials of Effective Skeptical Outreach

Thoughtful Intercourse

What’s New by Bob Park

When Emotional Reasoning Trumps IQ

When homeopaths fight back

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

Book of the Week:
50 Great Myths of Popular Psychology: Shattering Widespread Misconceptions about Human Behavior, by Scott O. Lilienfeld, Steven Jay Lynn, John Ruscio and Barry L. Beyerstein.

“In a society in which psychological knowledge is shaped as much, if not more, by supermarket tabloids, talk shows, and self-proclaimed ‘self-help gurus’ as it is by the latest scientific advances, there is a pressing need for a book that helps students and the public distinguish fact from fiction in the world of psychology. 50 Great Myths of Popular Psychology answers this need by using popular myths as a vehicle for distinguishing science from pseudoscience. Organized around key topic areas of modern psychology such as brain functioning, perception, development, memory, emotion, intelligence, learning, personality, mental illness, and psychotherapy, this book will help students and laypersons to critically evaluate the information and misinformation that is generated by popular psychology.”

— Back Cover

This Week’s Most-Viewed Pages:
Forum Topics:
  1. Funny FAILS
  2. Moon-walker claims alien contact cover-up
  3. The Supper
  4. Fif50ty FreAkieSt AnIMaLS
  5. The Battle of Tehran
  6. Atheist/agnostic
  7. Beckaploosa: it’s ON, baby!
  8. The ‘tone’ debate
  9. Scattershots: gargoyles & grotesques
  10. Need help on replying to Creationist
  1. Fundamentalists Hate Noah’s Ark
  2. Evolving a Venom or Two
  3. Miracle Thaw — The Bogus Miracle
  4. Fence-Sitting
  5. Scientific Truth
  6. The Biblical support for a Flat Earth and Geocentricism
  7. Skeptic Summary #297
  8. The Bible’s Bad Fruits
  9. Miracle Thaw Tray
  10. TAM5
There were 5,961 daily visitors this week.
Last Month’s Most-Viewed Pages:
Forum Topics:
  1. PZ expelled from Expelled — Dawkins slips in!
  2. Moon-walker claims alien contact cover-up
  3. Funny FAILS
  4. I… WTF…?
  5. The Supper
  6. Fif50ty FreAkieSt AnIMaLS
  7. The Battle of Tehran
  8. Atheist/agnostic
  9. Christopher Hitchens’ cancer
  10. Scattershots: gargoyles & grotesques
  11. DMV Senior Motorcyclist Handbook
  12. Need help on replying to Creationist
  13. Dracorex hogwartsia
  14. ‘Zion Oil’ getting into hot water?
  15. I wear boys underwear
  16. Strategy Ideas for Skeptics
  17. The shallow end of the gene pool…
  18. The Truth about the Bible and Evolution
  19. Crabby Catholic curses, well, everything in sight
  20. Burning the Koran: how stupid is this?
  1. Evolving a Venom or Two
  2. Fundamentalists Hate Noah’s Ark
  3. Miracle Thaw — The Bogus Miracle
  4. Laetrile
  5. N. 45, January 2004: On Tolerance vs. Respect
  6. The Bible’s Bad Fruits
  7. Scientific Truth
  8. Newton’s Third Law
  9. Evolution, Scientology Style
  10. Cold Reading
  11. Kent Hovind is a Kwazy Kweationist
  12. More on the Polonium 218 Controversy
  13. The Laundry Solution
  14. Paradigm Paralysis
  15. Miracle Thaw Tray
  16. Skeptic Summary #295
  17. TAM5
  18. Kent Hovind is a Big Phony!
  19. Is the Speed of Light Slowing Down?
  20. The Truth About The Bible And Evolution
There were 29,865 daily visitors in August, 2010.

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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