The Skeptics Society & Skeptic magazine


Skeptic Magazine, Volume 17 Number 4
Table of Contents

Skeptic magazine, vol 17, no 4 (cover)

Cover Articles

CAM for Cancer: Preying on Desperate People?
by Harriet Hall, M.D.
The Reality Distortion Field
Steve Jobs’s Modus Operandi of Ignoring Reality is a Double-edged Sword by Michael Shermer

Special Section:
Who’s in Charge?

Free Will and
Autonomous Will
A Physicist’s Perspective on
How We are Accountable for
Our Actions by Victor J. Stenger
The New Science
of Neuroethics
by Massimo Pigliucci


The SkepDoc
Barefoot in Sedona: Bogus Claims About Grounding Your Feet to Earth Promote Medical Pseudoscience
by Harriet Hall, M.D.
Bad Language
Deliver Us From Bob Larson
by Karen Stollznow
’Twas Brillig…
So Many Wonders… by James Randi

Junior Skeptic

Dark Secrets of the
  • Ancient Schemer, Ancient Skeptic
  • Portrait of a Con Artist
  • Trustworthy Sources?
  • Oracles
  • Hatching a God
  • Revealing Glycon
  • Networks of Spies
  • More Scammer Secrets
  • Tricks and Troubles
  • Testing the Oracle

Written by Daniel Loxton.
Cover by Daniel Loxton.
Interior art by Daniel Loxton
and Jim WW Smith.


Did Native Americans Discover Europe in 60 BCE?
by Jason Colavito
Mrs. Jesus?
No Joke: New Archaeological Find Points to a Married Christ, But is it True? by Tim Callahan
How To Be a Skeptical
News Consumer
by Donna L. Halper
Glossolalia Meets
Why speaking in Tongues Persists in Charismatic Christian and Pentecostal Gatherings
by Scott Semenyna
and Rodney Schmaltz
Academic Obfuscations
The Psychological Attraction of Postmodern Nonsense by Jim Davies
God’s Problem
An Interview With Howard Bloom, author of The God Problem: How a Godless
Cosmos Creates

by Frank Miele


Bogus, Bunk, and B.S.
A Review of 50 Popular Beliefs That People Think are True,
by Guy P. Harrison. reviewed by Peter Boghossian
How the Blind Watchmaker Made Eyes
A Review of Evolution’s Witness: How Eyes Evolved,
by Ivan R. Schwab. reviewed by Donald R. Prothero
Eden Sought
A Review of Paradise Lust: Searching for the Garden of Eden, by Brook Wilensky-Lanford.
reviewed by Glenn Branch
One Nation, Another Religion?
Two Reviews: Nonbeliever Nation: The Rise of Secular Americans, by David Niose. Religion for Atheists: A Non-believer’s Guide to the Uses of Religion, by Alain de Botton.
reviewed by Rachel Pridgen
Of Miracles and Magisteria
A review of God and the Folly of Faith, by Victor Stenger.
reviewed by Richard Morrock

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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 PDF Download

Wisdom of Harriet Hall

Top 10 Things to Know About Alternative Medicine

Harriet Hall M.D. discusses: alternative versus conventional medicine, flu fear mongering, chiropractic, vaccines and autism, placebo effect, diet, homeopathy, acupuncture, “natural remedies,” and detoxification.

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.

FREE PDF Download

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.

FREE PDF Download

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 can you tell the difference between a true conspiracy and a false one?

FREE PDF Download

The Science Behind Why People See Ghosts

The Science Behind Why People See Ghosts

Mind altering experiences 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!

FREE PDF Download

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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