Skeptic » eSkeptic » September 14, 2006

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Dr. Michael Shermer

In the second eSkeptic for this week, we announce another fabulous season of lectures at Caltech. Dr. Michael Shermer kicks off the season, followed by Dr. Owen Gingerich, Dr. Richard Sloan, Dr. Sam Harris, Dr. Richard Dawkins, Dr. Bart Kosko, and Jonathan Kirsh. Also, in the new episode of Skepticality, Derek interviews Dr. Shermer about the new book as well as recaps the whirlwind weekend that was Dragon* Con 2006.


our next lecture at Caltech

Why Darwin Matters:
The Case for Evolution & Against Intelligent Design

with Dr. Michael Shermer

Sunday, September 24th, 2pm
Baxter Lecture Hall, Caltech, Pasadena, CA

Dr. Michael Shermer is the Publisher of Skeptic magazine, a columnist for Scientific American, and author of Why People Believe Weird Things, How We Believe, and The Science of Good and Evil.

Evolution happened, and the theory describing it is one of the most well founded in all of science. Then why do half of all Americans reject it? In Why Darwin Matters, Michael Shermer defuses objections to the theory by examining what evolution really is, how we know it happened, and how to test it. Shermer then discusses what science is, demonstrating clearly how and why creationism and Intelligent Design are not science. Dr. Shermer also builds a powerful case for evolution as the scientific theory that most closely parallels the Christian model of human nature and the conservative model of free market economics. Dr. Shermer was once an evangelical Christian and a creationist, and is now one of the best-known public intellectuals defending evolutionary theory, so Why Darwin Matters provides readers with an insider’s guide to the evolution-creation debate, and why science should be embraced by people of all beliefs.

mark your calendar

Science, Religion, and Politics: A Conversation

with Dr. Owen Gingerich, Dr. Richard Sloan & Dr. Sam Harris

Sunday, October 8th, 2pm–5pm

The God Delusion

with Dr. Richard Dawkins

Saturday, October 28th, 2pm

Noise: A Fuzzy Logic Perspective

with Dr. Bart Kosko

Sunday, November 12th, 2pm

A History of the End of the World:
How the Most Controversial Book in the Bible
Changed the Course of Western Civilization

with Jonathan Kirsch

Sunday, December 3rd, 2pm


Skepticality: The Official Podcast of Skeptic Magazine

New episode featuring
Dr. Michael Shermer & Dragon*Con 2006

On this week’s episode of Skepticality, Derek gets philosophical with Skeptic founder Dr. Michael Shermer about his new book, Why Darwin Matters: The Case Against Intelligent Design. Derek & Swoopy also briefly recap the whirlwind weekend of fun that was Dragon*Con 2006 — complete with a rowdy live performance from musical skeptic George Hrab.

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Detecting Baloney

Baloney Detection Kit Sandwich (Infographic) by Deanna and Skylar (High Tech High Media Arts, San Diego, CA)

The Baloney Detection Kit Sandwich (Infographic)

For a class project, a pair of 11th grade physics students created the infographic shown below, inspired by Michael Shermer’s Baloney Detection Kit: a 16-page booklet designed to hone your critical thinking skills.

FREE Video Series

Science Based Medicine vs. Alternative Medicine

Science Based Medicine vs. Alternative Medicine

Understanding the difference could save your life! In this superb 10-part video lecture series, Harriet Hall, M.D., contrasts science-based medicine with so-called “complementary and alternative” methods. The lectures each range from 32 to 45 minutes.

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Top 10 Myths of Terrorism

Is Terrorism an Existential Threat?

This free booklet reveals 10 myths that explain why terrorism is not a threat to our way of life or our survival.

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The Top 10 Weirdest Things

The Top Ten Strangest Beliefs

Michael Shermer has compiled a list of the top 10 strangest beliefs that he has encountered in his quarter century as a professional skeptic.

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Reality Check: How Science Deniers Threaten Our Future (paperback cover)

Who believes them? Why? How can you tell if they’re true?

What is a conspiracy theory, why do people believe in them, and why do they tend to proliferate? Why does belief in one conspiracy correlate to belief in others? What are the triggers of belief, and how does group identity factor into it? How can one tell the difference between a true conspiracy and a false one?

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The Science Behind Why People See Ghosts

The Science Behind Why People See Ghosts

Do you know someone who has had a mind altering experience? If so, you know how compelling they can be. They are one of the foundations of widespread belief in the paranormal. But as skeptics are well aware, accepting them as reality can be dangerous…

FREE PDF Download

Top 10 Myths About Evolution

Top 10 Myths About Evolution (and how we know it really happened)

If humans came from apes, why aren’t apes evolving into humans? Find out in this pamphlet!

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Learn to be a Psychic in 10 Easy Lessons

Learn to do Psychic “Cold Reading” in 10
Easy Lessons

Psychic readings and fortunetelling are an ancient art — a combination of acting and psychological manipulation.

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