Author Archives: Andras

TheESP – Ep. #150 – Antivax Italian politicians, Russian homeopathy and baby acupuncture

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Segments:
Intro; Greetings; This Week in Skepticism; Pontus Pokes the Pope; News; Really Right; Farewell and Quote; Outro; Out-takes

Show Notes:
00:00:27 Intro

00:00:55 Greetings

00:06:16 This Week in Skepticism

1972 – Apollo program: Eugene Cernan and Harrison Schmitt begin the third and final extra-vehicular activity (EVA) or “Moonwalk” of Apollo 17. To date they are the last humans to set foot on the Moon (or any other planetary body outside Earth).

00:09:45  Pontus Pokes the Pope

Cardinal George Pell in court for charges of sexual misconduct towards children.

00:15:58 Skeptical News from around Europe

  1. Italy: Italy’s anti-vax health minister fires 30 experts from Higher Health Council
  2. Russia: Homeopathy in disguise
  3. Sweden: Macchiarini charged in court after all
    • https://www.dn.se/nyheter/sverige/overaklagaren-fattar-beslut-om-paolo-macchiarini/
  4. UK: Charity Commission publishes new guidelines for CAM charities
  5. Spain: The Skeptical Circle of Spain announces winners of the Pepe Cervera and the José Carlos Pérez Cobo prize.
  6. Sweden: Baby Acupuncture against Colic
  7. Belgium: Belgian authorities investigate case of autistic woman’s euthanasia

00:43:20 Really Right

  • Ovidiu Covaciu, educating people about vaccinations in a Facebook group.

00:46:38 Quote

“We don’t need to share the same opinions as others, but we need to be respectful.”
/Taylor Swift, American singer and songwriter/

00:48:01 Outro

00:49:16 Out-takes

TheESP – Ep. #147 – Frankie eats lasagna, heroes of science comm & Spanish government fighting CAM

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This week our three hosts discuss a great number of things including how a delusional German physician got away with killing people, and how Pope Francis thinks right to tackle poverty.
Loads of good news this week:
The John Maddox Prize goes to Britt Hermes and Terry Hughes this year, ARP-SAPC reaches 20 years of activity, the Spanish government moves against pseudo-therapies in health care, the BBC upholds the Good Thinking Society’s complaint about a homeopathy-related phone-in and ComCept awards journalist Vera Novais for advocating science as opposed to nonsense. Also, on the less positive side, we report on child marriages no longer being recognised in Sweden, no matter what the culture of the country of origin is, authors of a paper based on a national survey into CAM use in the UK suggest NHS funding for bogus therapies and christian parents threatening legal action for something that wasn’t what it looked like.
And the Norwegian Labour Party gets this week’s Really Right prize for suggesting the revoking of VAT excemption for alternative medicinal practices.

Segments:
Intro; Greetings; This Week in Skepticism; Pontus Pokes the Pope; News; Really Right; Farewell and Quote; Outro; Out-takes

Events Calendar: http://theesp.eu/events_in_europe

Show Notes:
00:00:27 Greetings

00:06:21 This Week in Skepticism

Josef M. Issels (November 21, 1907 – February 11, 1998) was a German physician known for promoting an alternative cancer therapy regimen, the Issels treatment. He claimed to cure cancer patients who had been declared incurable by conventional cancer treatments.

00:15:59 Pontus Pokes the Pope

Francis eats lasagna with the poor and then says the world will end.

00:26:23 Skeptical News

UK: John Maddox Prize announced for 2018

SPAIN: ARP-SAPC publishes number 50 of The Skeptical magazine for the promotion of reason and science, it was published the first in June 1998, more than 20 years ago.

SPAIN: Spain moves to ban pseudo-therapies from universities and health centers

UK: BBC upholds Good Thinking complaint against BBC Radio Leeds homeopathy phone-in

UK: National survey of CAM-use ends up suggesting NHS funding for alternative therapies?

SWEDEN: Child marriages no longer recognised in Sweden

PORTUGAL: ComCept Award for Science Journalism goes to Vera Novais

UK: Legal action from Christian parents to stop school’s LBTQ-parade

00:49:58 Really Right: Norwegian Labour party suggests revoking Alt Med VAT exemption

00:55:46 Quote

“Every time we let ourselves believe for unworthy reasons, we weaken our powers of self-control, of doubting, of judicially and fairly weighing evidence. We all suffer severely enough from the maintenance and support of false beliefs and the fatally wrong actions which they lead to, and the evil born when one such belief is entertained is great and wide.”
/William Kingdon Clifford/

00:57:46 QSoW Ad

00:59:17 Outro

01:00:32 Out-takes

TheESP – Ep. #146 – Pixie Turner

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On this Episode:

On this week’s episode Jelena and Andras interviews British biochemist, nutritionist, blogger, author and public speaker Pixie Turner, to talk about the science-based approach to healthy eating, dietary and lifestyle choices and how she turned from a person suffering from orthorexia to a public figure educating people into following the science instead of falling for popular, but absolutely useless diets.

Please also check out our event page at http://theesp.eu/events_in_europe

Segments:
Intro; Greetings; Interview; Farewell; Outro;

Show notes:

00:00:07: Intro

00:00:34: Greetings

00:03:24: Interview with Pixie Turner

00:50:10: Farewell

00:52:30: Outro

00:53:44: Out-takes

Ep. #143 – QED Live Recording with Claire Klingenberg, Brian Eggo and Jay Novella

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Segments:
Intro; Greetings; Clash of the Candies; This Week in Skepticism; News; Pontus Pokes the Pope; Really Wrong; Quote and Farewell; Outro; Out-takes

This episode is the first of its kind as it is the live recording from QED 2018 that happened in Manchester in the middle of October. In the unfortunate abscence of Jelena, Pontus and András are joined by Claire Klingenberg, Brian Eggo and Jay Novella to discuss local confectionery, booze and topics like the Shroud of Turin, Leukemia and how a new finding can lead to sensational but untrue headlines, a Danish cancer quack that sites his long deceased patients as his success stories, a couple of good news from Portugal and a student essay competition initiated by the University of Szeged to encourage critical thinking.
Of course, the pope gets poked again and Smirnoff gets the price for being Really Wrong in playing the non-GMO & gluten-free cards…

Events Calendar: http://theesp.eu/events_in_europe

Show Notes:
Greetings

This Week in Skepticism: 14 October 1988 – media conference – Shroud of Turin radiocarbon date revealed and it turned out to be a medieval hoax.

Skeptical News

INTERNATIONAL: A new discovery with the potential to boost sensationalistic headlines

DENMARK: A cancer quack that still cites his patients as his success stories after they had died while he’d been treating them

PORTUGAL: Good and bad news

HUNGARY: Prestigious university calls for short essays written by students 15-18 years of age on a popular quackery and why it doesn’t hold water

Pontus Pokes the Pope

Sir Francis comparing abortion to hiring a trained killer while blaming the devil for church scandals

Really Wrong: Smirnoff advertising gluten-free, non-GMO vodka

Quote and Farewell

“The basics are knowing which small steps to take – you can’t start out planning world salvation from the get go. You have to be ready to do gruelling work. You have to find role models, who will teach you how to think better. You can’t always trust what you believe yourself. Every truth starts off as a delusion. It can only become truth after it is critiqued.”
/Ladislav Hromadka, Czech Philosopher/

Outro

TheESP – Ep. #141 – Ig Nobel Prize, Rosaries, Factfulness and the WHO making a big mistake

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Segments:
Intro; Greetings; This Week in Skepticism; Pontus Pokes the Pope; News; Really Wrong; Quote and Farewell; Outro; Out-takes

This week we look at the history of the Ig Nobel Prize, try to find out (Spoiler alert: without success) why pope Francis thinks rosaries are the best way to defend the church from the “Great Accuser” and bring you a ton of news, including: the Romanian referendum on the inclusion or exclusion of same sex marriage in the constitution, a Hungarian cancer quack who boasts likely made-up qualifications, Hans Rosling’s ‘Factfulness’ to become available for free to Swedish students, hundreds of Spanish scientist appeal to Health Minister for action against ‘pseudoscience that kills’, Natalie Grams’ highly anticipated English book on homeopathy to come out in December, what The Croydon Cat Killer might actually be, Informationsnetzwerk Homöopathie’s new cool educational material published, investigation into a possible link between measles cases and health-related budget cuts in Italy.
Also, we are sheding some light on how wrong the WHO is for legitimising Traditional Chinese Medicine.

Events Calendar: http://theesp.eu/events_in_europe

Show Notes:
00:00:26 Greetings

00:03:58 This Week in Skepticism: The first Ig Nobel Prize Ceremony (2 October 1991)

00:11:48 Pontus Pokes the Pope

His Francisness calls for daily Rosary prayers during October

00:18:18 Skeptical News

ROMANIA: Referendum on same sex marriages

HUNGARY: In search of claimed qualifications of a cancer quack

SWEDEN: Hans Rosling’s last book ‘Factfulness’ free for all Swedish students

SPAIN: Hundreds of Spanish scientists ask for action against pseudoscience “that kills”

GERMANY: Natalie Grams’ book to be published in English in December

UK: The Croydon Cat Killer

GERMANY: INH comes out with new youtube video and other info material

ITALY: Possible link between health cuts and measles

00:47:25 Really Wrong: WHO to include TCM in the ICD

00:53:39 Quote and Farewell

“The only victories which leave no regret are those which are gained over ignorance.”
/Napoleon Bonaparte/

00:54:31 Outro

00:55:46 Out-takes

TheESP – Ep. #140 – Massimo Polidoro and CICAP Fest 2018

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On this Episode:

This week we welcome Massimo Polidoro back to our show. This time he tells us about how the latest edition of CICAPFest went (it was a great success in Padova, Italy). We also asked him about his upcoming books and more.
We also announced our participation in QED where we will record our first ever live show on the Podcast Track in Manchester. Stay tuned!

Please also check out our event page at http://theesp.eu/events_in_europe

Segments:
Intro; Greetings; Interview; Farewell; Outro; GSoW radio ad

Show notes:

00:00:07: Intro

00:00:59: Greetings

00:04:34: Interview with Massimo Polidoro

00:36:37: Farewell

00:39:47: Outro

00:41:02: Out-takes

TheESP – Ep #138 – Darren McKee and Effective altruism

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On this Episode:

This week’s episode features an interview that Andras recorded in Budapest with Canadian skeptic and host of The Reality Check podcast Darren McKee, who talks about Effective altruism and why it’s the real thing for skeptics.

Please also check out our event page at http://theesp.eu/events_in_europe

Segments:
Intro; Greetings; Interview; Farewell; Outro; Out-takes

Show notes:

00:00:07: Intro

00:00:34: Greetings

00:12:33: Interview with Darren McKee

00:51:50: Farewell

00:56:56: Outro

00:57:10: Out-takes

Ep. #137 – Coconut oil, public health, the pope and the photo encyclopedia of bogus claims

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Segments:
Intro; Greetings; This Week in Skepticism; News; Pontus Pokes the Pope; Really Wrong; Quote and Farewell; Outro; Out-takes

This week we talked about Susan Gerbic’s new interview with Massimo Polidoro, a court case over calling someone a Holocaust denier, new teams doing science communication, coconut and the undecided public enemy state, homeopathy and whether it’s unethical for pharmacies to sell it, HPV vaccination for boys, ‘Inoculated’, a new movie in Germany that might be twice as dangerous as Vaxxed, SkepKon 2019, fake Twitter accounts, an Austrian photographer’s encyclopaedia of bogus claims and how religion ruins everything.

Events Calendar: http://theesp.eu/events_in_europe

Show Notes:
00:00:27 Greetings

Susan Gerbic’s interview with Massimo Polidoro: https://www.csicop.org/specialarticles/show/fifty_books_and_counting

00:13:09 This Week in Skepticism

On 5 September 1996, Irving filed a libel suit concerning Lipstadt’s book in English court. He named in his suit Lipstadt and Penguin Books, whose division Plume had published a British edition of her book.

00:19:05 Skeptical News

SPAIN: A new organisation for the promotion of science is born in Valencia

INTERNATIONAL: Measles update

GERMANY: Freiburg doctor Karin Michels gives a talk abut coconut oil being a poison

FRANCE: French university drops homeopathy degree amid alternative medicines row

SPAIN: University of Alicante offering a course into the public understanding of Science

EUROPE: HPV vaccination for boys

GERMANY: New movie called ‘Inoculated’ is probably worse than ‘Vaxxed’

GERMANY: SkepKon 2019 in the making: Call for papers

GERMANY: Is it unethical for Pharmacies to sell homeopathic products

SWEDEN: Swedish Study Notes Surge in Automated Twitter Accounts

AUSTRIA: “This will change your life forever” – Photographer puts bogus claims and products in display

01:05:27 Pontus Pokes the Pope: Oh, where to begin?

01:11:27 Really Wrong: Publicly funded religious free school scandal

01:16:27 Quote and Farewell

“Science is the great antidote to the poison of enthusiasm and superstition.”
/Adam Smith (1723-90) Scottish moral philosopher/

01:17:34 Outro

01:18:49 Out-takes

Ep. #135 – ET healing, first contact in Germany, wet cupping, plus religion

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Segments:
Intro; Greetings; News; Pontus Pokes the Pope; Really Wrong; Farewell and Quote; Outro; Out-takes

Show Notes:
00:00:27 Greetings

While unfortunately Jelena is not present, this week we talk about an ET healer in the Netherlands before we share the latest updates on measles. The comes the outrageous fact that Germany has no official plan for a first contact situation and how religious taboos can cause trouble. El escéptico’s 50th issue is out now, while wet cupping is gaining ground in Amsterdam. Also, the pope gets poked again while pastafarianism doesn’t get recognised as a religion.

Events Calendar: http://theesp.eu/events_in_europe

00:11:50 Skeptical News

NETHERLANDS: “ET Healer” not prosecuted for possible contribution to suicide

UK: Royal homeopath dies in a bicyle accident

INTERNATIONAL: MEASLES UPDATE: Finally it makes the news (but the reported numbers are too low)

GERMANY: No preparations for alien landing situations

SWITZERLAND: Muslim couple denied Swiss citizenship over handshake refusal

SPAIN: Issue #50 of El Esceptico to be released

NETHERLANDS: Wet Cupping on the rise in Amsterdam

NETHERLANDS: Pastafarianism “not a religion” – rules Dutch court

00:30:50 Pontus Pokes the Pope: Frankie boy cannot handle the scandal

00:35:16 Really Right: Greta Thunberg, 15, takes a stand for climate

00:40:59 Farewell and Quote

“Of a number of variant hypotheses about the same facts, that one is true which shows why facts, which in the other hypotheses remain unrelated, are as they are, i.e., which demonstrates their orderly and rational mathematical connexion.”

/Johannes Kepler German astronomer and astrologer/

00:42:20 Outro

00:43:35 Out-takes

TheESP – Ep. #122 – The Illuminati, vaccination news, exorcism, bad doctors and Factfulness

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Segments:
Intro; Greetings; This Week in Skepticism; News; Really Wrong; Quote; Outro; Out-takes

Show Notes:
00:00:27 Greetings

00:07:57 This Week in Skepticism

00:17:10 Skeptical News

00:49:43 Really Wrong

00:53:21 Quote

“The only reason people do not know much is because they do not care to know. They are incurious. Incuriousity is the oddest and most foolish failing there is.”
/Stephen Fry, The Fry Chronicles/

00:54:28 Outro

00:55:43 Out-takes