Author Archives: Pontus Böckman

Episode #118 – Marko Kovic: Problems in the Skeptical Movement?

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On this Episode:

This week we talk to Marko Kovic, social science researcher and former President of the Swiss Skeptics (Skeptiker Schweiz). We discuss his recent blog post “Some problems of the skeptic movement” and talk about possible ways of addressing these issues.

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

00:02:09: Interview with Marko Kovic

00:36:46: Radio spot

00:39:19: Farewell

00:41:45: Outro

00:43:00: Out-takes

EPISODE #110 – Devil’s Footprints, Irish Cancer and The Backfire Effect

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Segments:
Intro; Greetings; This Week in Skepticism; News; Analysis; Really Wrong; Quote; Outro; Outtakes

Show Notes:

00:00:26 Greetings

00:07:15 This Week in Skepticism

00:14:07 Skeptical News

00:42:11 Analysis: the Backfire Effect Re-considered

00:55:06 Really Wrong:

Irish priest calls out for more exorcists

00:59:18 Quote

“We live in a world where unfortunately the distinction between true and false appears to become increasingly blurred by manipulation of facts, by exploitation of uncritical minds, and by the pollution of the language.”
Arne Tiselius, Swedish biochemist and Nobel laureate in Chemistry

01:00:47 Outro

01:02:02 Outtakes

Episode #108 – Britt Marie Hermes and Eran Segev

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On this Episode:

This week we bring you an interview with Britt Marie Hermes and Eran Segev regarding the lawsuit against Britt Marie. Britt Marie has been taken to court in Germany by US-based naturopath ‘Dr’ Colleen Huber, claiming that Britt has defamed her. This concerns statements Britt Marie made in a blog, in which she was critical of the medical and fundraising practices of the Naturopathic Cancer Society and the Nature Works Best Cancer Clinic (Huber is associated with both).

Link to Britt Marie Hermes’ blog.
Link to Australian Skeptics fundrasier here.

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

Segments:
Intro; Interview; Fundraiser promo; Farewell; Outro; Out-takes

Show notes:

00:00:00
INTRO

00:00:34
Greetings

00:04:10
Interview with Britt Marie Hermes and Eran Segev

00:41:27
Fundraiser promo

00:43:50
Farewell

00:47:25
Outro

00:48:40
Out-takes

Episode #105 – Smallpox, fake news and the Taoiseach is a coward

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In our final episode for 2017 we look back at a skeptical year in Europe. We talk about smallpox, how measles continues to spread and how a prominent skeptic becomes head of the Swedish Royal Academy of Science. We also look into Facebook’s new attempt to fight fake news, how peer review punishes poor research and how Christmas decorations being removed in Italy has nothing to do with muslims.
Lastly the Taoiseach in Ireland failes to take a stand against Scientology, and for that he is Really Wrong.

Segments:
Intro; Greetings; The Week in Skepticism; News; Farewell; Outro; Outtakes

Show Notes:

00:00:28 Greetings
Review of 2017 in Europe:

00:16:29 This Week in Skepticism: The Smallpox Retention Controversy

21:39 Skeptical News

00:43:21 Quote
“The one real goal of education is to leave a person asking questions.”
MAX BEERBOHM, British Critic, Essayist, and Caricaturist

00:47:21: Outro

00:48:36: Outtakes

Episode #102 – More Superheroes!

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On this episode:

We could not possibly fit everything into epsiode #100, so here come some more interviews from those recordings: We talk to Andreas Kyriacou, Antonia de Oñate and João Monteiro!
As always, make sure you check out our event page at http://theesp.eu/events_in_europe

Segments
Intro; Greetings & Feedback; Interviews; Outro

Show notes:

00:00:00
INTRO music

00:00:27
Greetings and Feedback

Check out the Guerrilla Skepticism on Wikipedia project at https://www.facebook.com/GSoWproject/

00:09:12
Interview with Andreas Kyriacou from Skeptiker Schweiz and the Freethinkers Association of Switzerland

00:21:40
Interview with Antonia de Oñate from the Spanish Skeptics ARP and João Monteiro from COMCEPT in Portugal

00:34:54
Goodbye

00:36:34
Outro

00:37:50
Outtakes (from Ep 100 recordings, with Sean Slater)

Episode #101 – Belgian UFOs, the King of Germany and András goes into politics

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On this episode:

The brilliant Brian Eggo (“Eggman”) joins us from Glasgow as guest host and tells all about the Skeptics in the Pub movement in the world.

Then we dig into Belgian UFOs, dowsing in the UK, and how to combat fake news in Italian schools. Before we end, the “King of Germany” gets the Goldenes Bretts award, Macchiarini avoids prosecution and Italian anti-vaccers spread lies about a perfectly healthy child. Plus András goes all political.

Check out Glasgow Skeptics at http://glasgowskeptics.com/ or send them an email at enquiries(at)glasgowskeptics.com

Also, make sure you check out our event page at http://theesp.eu/events_in_europe

00:00:28
Greetings and comments

00:10:12
This Week in Skepticism:
The Belgian UFO wave

00:21:06
News Items 

UK: Water firms use water diving to find leaks:

Italy: Schools to start new program to turn students into “Fake News Hunters”:

Austria: The Austrian Skeptics award the Goldenes Bretts Award to the “King of Germany”:

Sweden: Macchiarini not to be prosecuted in Sweden:

00:39:28
Really wrong: Italian anti-vaccers Corvelva and ‘dead’ baby picture:

00:45:34
Radio spots

00:47:39
Contact details, goodbye and more

00:52:52
Quote:

“Let us keep our minds open, by all means, as long as that means keeping our sense of perspective and seeking an understanding of the forces which mould the world. But don’t keep your minds so open that your brains fall out! There are still things in this world which are true and things which are false; acts which are right and acts which are wrong, even if there are statesmen who hide their designs under the cloak of high-sounding phrases.”
Walter Kotschnig, Austrian born educator, diplomat and professor at Smith College

00:55:50
Outro

00:57:05
Outtakes 

Episode #090 – feat. Claire Klingenberg

 

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On this episode:
We tell you all about the fantastic 17th European Skeptics Congress coming up in Wroclaw in less than two weeks. Our guest is Claire Klingenberg, event manager extraordinaire from Sisyfos, the Czech Skeptics’ Club.

Please help funding the About Time Tour 2017 with Susan Gerbic and Mark Edward!

Also, make sure you check out our event page at http://theesp.eu/events_in_europe

Segments
Intro; Greetings; Claire Kilngenberg; Outro; Outtakes

Show notes:
00:00:00
INTRO music

00:00:27
Greetings

00:00:57
Claire Klingenberg

Please visit the webpage for the European Skeptics Congress for more info about this super event. Also check out the video with James Randi who greets you welcome to Wroclaw.

00:22:08
Goodbye

00:24:06
A message from Brian Eggo

00:25:43
Outro

00:26:57
Outtakes

Episode #089

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On this episode:
The inspiration for Mel Gibson’s the Passion of the Christ, alternative treatments in Valencia, the Heilpraktiker system in Germany, whether Down’s syndrome has been eradicated in Iceland and the new Full Fact tool.
Then a deep dive into the measles epidemic in Europe and the problem of crowdfunding for cancer trips to Mexico.

Please help funding the About Time Tour 2017 with Susan Gerbic and Mark Edward!

Also, make sure you check out our event page at http://theesp.eu/events_in_europe

Segments
Intro; Greetings & Feedback; This Week in Skepticism; Skeptical News; Analysis; Really Wrong; Quote

Show notes:
00:00:00
INTRO music

00:00:27
Greetings and Feedback

There is still time to vote for Ockham Awards 2017. Visit this link to nominate your favourite skeptics activist/podcast/project: https://www.skeptic.org.uk/ockham-awards-2017/vote/

00:06:16
This Week in Skepticism
Anne Catherine Emmerich – Catholic Augustinian Canoness, 8 September 1774 – 9 February 1824) who inspired Mel Gibson’s “the Passion of the Christ”

00:09:01
Skeptical News

  1. SPAIN: The miraculous enemas of Dr. Torres
    El Español
  2. GERMANY: Heilpraktiker under attack by panel of experts
    Edzard Ernst: the German Heilpraktiker is a dangerous and Anachronistic Nonsense
    Wikipedia: Heilpraktiker and Heilpraktikergesetz
  3. ICELAND: Has Iceland Eliminated Down Syndrome Through Abortion?
    Snopes
  4. UK: Full Fact – the new, automated way of spotting misinformation?
    The Guardian: Full Fact Software
    Fullfact.org: Frequently asked Questions

00:23:53
Analysis: European measles epidemic revisited

ECDC: Measles update July
Romanian Health Authorities: Weekly measles facts
Danish news: Local measles outbreak

00:36:33
Really Wrong: Crowdfunding trips to Alternative Cancer Clinics in Mexico

Cancer Reasearch UK: Alternative Cancer Treatments in Mexico
Al Jazeera: Javier Duarte detained in Guatemala

00:43:45
Quote
“A few drops of science will often disinfect an entire barrel full of ignorance and prejudice.”
/Hendrik Willem van Loon, Netherlands born historian, journalist, and award-winning children’s book author/

00:48:05
Outro

00:49:20
Outtakes

Episode #085, feat. Leo Igwe

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This week Pontus and Jelena talks about news and have an interview with the humanist Leo Igwe, speaker at the upcoming European Skeptcis Congress in Poland. Nicola Throp of the Measeyside Skeptics also comes on to tell us all about QED in Manchester in October.

Leo Igwe is a skeptic and a Nigerian human rights advocate who has played leading roles in the Nigerian Humanist Movement, Atheist Alliance International and the Center For Inquiry – Nigeria. For many years he represented IHEU (International Humanist and Ethical Union) at the African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights and generally in Western and Southern Africa. He specialized in campaigning against child witchcraft accusations and have researched this topic at the University of Bayreuth in Germany.

In the news segments we revisit an old Really Wrong winner who is now being extradited to Australia, GWUP warns about a German fake news site and in Ireland, the falling HPV vaccination rates will lead to an increase in cervical cancer.

Segments
Intro; Greetings & Feedback with Nicola Throp; This Week in Skepticism; Skeptical News; Interview with Leo Igwe; Really Right; Quote

Show notes:
00:00:00
INTRO music

00:00:35
Greetings & feedback with Nicola Throp

  • To find out more about QED and to sign up go to qedcon.org
  • Check out our calendar page for skeptical events in Europe

00:09:01
This Week in Skepticism
The Lakenheath-Bentwaters Incident

00:15:15
Skeptical News

  1. UK: Xiao Hongchi to be sent to Australia for criminal investigation
  2. GERMANY: Fake news site
  3. IRELAND: HSE Ireland is concerned about low HPV vaccination rates in the UK

00:25:12
Interview with Leo Igwe

00:56:56
Skeptical Ads

00:58:32
Really Right:

The Edinburgh Skeptics for organising Skeptics on the Fringe

01:01:22
Quote:
“In order to seek truth, it is necessary once in the course of our life, to doubt, as far as possible, of all things”
/René Descartes, French philosopher, mathematician and scientist/

01:02:34
Outro

01:03:49
Out-takes

Episode #084, feat. Holm Gero Hümmler

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Our guest on this episode was Holm Gero Hümmler, nuclear physicist, management consultant and author of the book ‘Relativer Quantenquark’. He blogs at quantenquark.com and he is one of the speakers on the upcoming 17th European Skeptics Congress in Poland in September. We discuss how ‘relativity’ and ‘quantum’ and other scientific words are misused by charlatans and the importance of proper science communication.

Segments
Intro; Greetings & Feedback; Interview with Holm Gero Hümmler; Farewell; Outro

Show notes:
00:00:00
INTRO music

00:00:35
Greetings & feedback

Please support The Good Thinking Society by replying to the NHS consultation about ending homeopathy prescriptions!

The Swedish Skeptics (VoF) have extended their offering to their members until 10 August to win 15 free tickets for the 17th European Skeptics Congress. Membership open also to non-Swedes! Find out about the details here (Swedish only), or go to the form directly (in Swedish and English).

Please visit our ‘Events in Europe’ page to see what’s going on across the continent in skepticism.

00:02:45
Interview with Holm Gero Hümmler

00:31:51
Farewell

00:32:03
Outro

00:33:18
Outtakes