Skeptic: Examining Extraordinary Claims and Promoting Science Skeptic: Examining Extraordinary Claims and Promoting Science

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pseudoscience

eSkeptic for 14-10-15

Among the strangest of all bizarre pseudoscientific notions is the idea that ordinary contrails formed by high-flying aircraft are somehow a government conspiracy to spray us with toxic chemicals. In this week’s eSkeptic, Donald R. Prothero discusses how “chemtrail” conspiracy thinking fails the science literacy test.

The Fifth Horseman: The Insights of Victor Stenger (1935–2014)

Michael Shermer reflects on the life and skepticism of physicist Victor Stenger.

eSkeptic for 14-07-23

Last week, the James Randi Educational Foundation’s “The Amazing Meeting 2014” conference in Las Vegas brought together many of the most engaging voices in science and skepticism for a challenging and joyful celebration of ideas. The Skeptics Society was in the spotlight, with Michael Shermer, Donald Prothero, and Junior Skeptic’s Daniel Loxton taking the stage for feature presentations. In this week’s eSkeptic, we share the text of Loxton’s well-received speech on skeptical history, titled “A Rare and Beautiful Thing.” Although designed as a live multimedia presentation, we hope this distilled format will give a sense of the passion behind this unusual piece.

eSkeptic for 14-06-18

In this week’s eSkeptic, we present the text of the last three pages of the Junior Skeptic 18 on the sinister legend of a lethal supernatural curse associated with Tutankhamun’s tomb. Did the explorers who found the tomb pay for their discovery with their lives?

eSkeptic for 14-05-21

In this week’s eSkeptic, we present an article from Skeptic magazine issue 7.4 (1999) in which three psychologists examine in detail the most recent scientific evidence (at the time) regarding the efficacy of Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) therapy. The authors consider strategies employed by EMDR’s proponents to deal with negative findings, and note historical parallels between EMDR and other controversial treatments. This scientific and historical analysis of EMDR may help shed light on a variety of other potentially pseudoscientific practices in the field of clinical psychology. In this respect, EMDR serves as a useful object lesson in the study of pseudoscience.

eSkeptic for 14-03-12

Pseudoscience runs rampant in much of the popular media, reducing science to stereotypes of evil mad scientists. With the recent reboot of Carl Sagan’s Cosmos documentary, we see the return of science popularization in a manner that inspires people (especially children) to be fascinated by science, to think about careers in science, and to pass Sagan’s mantle on to another generation. In this week’s eSkeptic, scientist and educator Donald Prothero reviews the first episode of Cosmos: A Spacetime Odyssey, which premiered March 9, 2014.

eSkeptic for 14-01-15

In this week’s eSkeptic, in light of recent chatter that a genuine Bigfoot has been captured, we share these confessions from Jonathan Blais — a Bigfoot-hunter-turned-skeptic. This article appeared in Skeptic Magazine issue 18.4 (2013).

eSkeptic for 14-01-08

In this week’s eSkeptic, Norman Levitt discusses some of the intellectual follies of leftist postmodern academics who would denounce science in favour of fringe science, pseudoscience, and outright antiscience. This article appeared in Skeptic magazine issue 6.3 (1998).

James Randi on Quackery
and the Need for Science Education

James Randi addresses congressional representatives at the Rayburn Building, Washington, D.C., March 18th, 1999. This address appeared in Skeptic magazine volume 17, number 1 that year, in his regular column ’Twas Brillig….

eSkeptic for 12-07-25

In this week’s eSkeptic, Paul Goodin explains how he uses magic tricks and mentalism to introduce the theme of skepticism to students in his classroom and teach the importance of critical thinking in everything from pseudoscience to buying a car. This article appeared in Skeptic magazine 15.4 (2010).

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Carbon Comic

Carbon Comic (by Kyle Sanders)

Carbon Comic, which appears in Skeptic magazine, is created by Kyle Sanders: a pilot and founder of Little Rock, Arkansas’ Skeptics in The Pub. He is also a cartoonist who authors Carbon Dating: a skeptical comic strip about science, pseudoscience, and relationships. It can be found at carboncomic.com.

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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…

Reality Check

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

How Science Deniers Threaten Our Future

The battles over evolution, climate change, childhood vaccinations, and the causes of AIDS, alternative medicine, oil shortages, population growth, and the place of science in our country—all are reaching a fevered pitch. Many people and institutions have exerted enormous efforts to misrepresent or flatly deny demonstrable scientific reality to protect their nonscientific ideology, their power, or their bottom line…

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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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Top 10 Things You Should Know About Alternative Medicine

Top 10 Things You Should Know About Alternative Medicine

Topics include: chiropractic, the placebo effect, homeopathy, acupuncture, and the questionable benefits of organic food, detoxification, and ‘natural’ remedies.

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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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