The Skeptics Society & Skeptic magazine


Skeptic Magazine, Volume 6 Number 2
Table of Contents

Skeptic magazine, vol 6, no 2


’Twas Brillig…
A Deadly
Intellectual Atmosphere
by James Randi
Coach Potatoes
The Latest Self-Help Diet
by Daryl Lease
The Skeptics Society
1997 Dumbth Award
For the Dumbest Thing Anyone Did in 1997
by Randy Cassingham
Skeptic Lite
Genesis Revisited:
A Scientific Creation Story
The “Emily Event”
Emily Rosa and the Therapeutic Touch Wars
by Larry Sarner

Special Section:
Taking God Seriously

Deepak’s Dangerous Dogmas
by Phil Molé
Karl Popper on God
The Lost Interview
by Edward Zerin
A Case for God
by Bruce Mazet
Taking Creationism Seriously
Are Skeptics Answering Creationists Effectively?
by Taner Edis
A Case Against God
Science and the Falsifiability Question in Theology
by Massimo Pigliucci
Do You Believe in God?
The Difference in Your Answer & the Difference it Makes
by Michael Shermer
The Truth is Out There & Ray Hyman Wants to Find it
An Interview with a Co-Founder of Modern Skepticism
by Michael Shermer


Thanks Again, Carl; The Prostitution Debate; JFK … and David Cole?; Kudos to Miele; Alien Hoax in New Zealand; Breeding Spoons and Dying Candelsticks; If There Was No One Around to Hear the Big Bang Did it Make a Noise?; Superstition in Our Skies; Amazed, Amused, and Angered; When The Worm Turns; The Evidence for God; The Anti-Meme Meme; Another Omega; More JFK Mythology Exposed
E.O. Wilson
Wilson’s Red Flag; Sex and Procreation; Wilson’s Free Will
Van Praagh &
Grief Counseling
Grief and Van Praagh;
Growing With Grief
Drug Policy, Journalism
& Ideologies
Drug Policy No Goode; Special Pleading v. Skepticism; Goode Responds; Objectivity Still Worth Having; The Arbitrary Belief Module; Environmental Ideologies


The Skeptics Society Hosts a Sold-Out Caltech Conference
God, Religion & Myths: Exploring the Human Need to Believe
by Lee Traynor
Skepticism in Prime-Time
by S. Elizabeth Bird
5-Fold Increase in Skeptic’s Worldwide Distribution; Supreme Court Slams “Junk Science”; Evolution Happened — Deal With It, Says NAS; John Casti Speaks at Caltech on Artificial Intelligence; USA Today Survey Shows Beliefs in Weird Things on the Rise; Alternative Medicine Used by 40% of Americans; Therapeutic Touch for Horses?; Faith Healing Kills, Study Shows; Catholics Skeptical of Weeping Virgin Mary … Sort of; Hemingway Haunts Havana; Abduction Watch; Virgin Mary Sited in Cake; Shermer Performs Psychic Reading for ABC


Designing the Designer
God: The Evidence, by Patrick Glynn
reviewed by Jeffrey Shallit
Blind Faith
Mind Games: Exposing Today’s Psychics, Frauds & False Spiritual Phenomenon, by André Kole and Jerry MacGregor
reviewed by Jamy Ian Swiss

Books in Brief

Journey Through the Ice Age
by Paul G. Bahn and Jean Vertut
Finding Enlightenment: Ramtha’s School of Ancient Wisdom
by J. Gordon Melton
Eye to Eye
by Frans Lanting Chistine Eckstrom (Ed.) reviewed by Frank Miele
In Brief
Star Trek on the Brain: Alien Minds, Human Minds, by Robert Sekuler and Randolph Blake; End-Time Visions: The Road to Armageddon? by Richard Abanes; Thinking Logically: A Study of Common Fallacies, by Brant Abrahamson and Fred Smith; Against the Multicultural Agenda: A Critical Thinking Alternative, by Yehudi O. Webster; Randomness, by Deborah J. Bennett; Harmless Naturalism: The Limits of Science and the Nature of Philosophy, by Robert Almeder; Encounters With the Paranormal: Science, Knowledge, and Belief, by Kendrick Frazier (Ed.); Carlos Castaneda, Academic Opportunism and the Psychedelic Sixties, by Jay Courtney Fikes; The User Illusion: Cutting Consciousness Down to Size, by Tor Norretranders; Bringing the War Home, by William Thomas; The Psychic Mafia, by M. Lamar Keene as told to Allen Spraggett

Junior Skeptic

TT and Me
by Emily Rosa
Let ’em Roll!
Are Gamblers Lucky?
by Erika Antisdale
Science Surfing
Web Sites That Make The Grade
by Cathie Walker and Sheri Kinney
Toying Around with Science
The Physics Behind Toys and Gags; Magic Tricks, Science Facts; More Magic Tricks, Science Facts; Physics Lab in a Housewares Store; Physics Lab in a Hardware Store; Physics Lab in the Home; Forces, Motion, and Energy; Magic and Perception: The Art and Science of Fooling the Senses
by Bob Friedhoffer

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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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