TheESP – Ep. #155 – Bacon, probiotics, the danger of acupuncture and the rise of anti-fluoridation

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This week we’re back to bring you news and info about a wide range of topics including Francis Bacon and his importance in the development of #science, how the ‘good pope’ John Paul II was a misogynist, why we admire the works of Sense about Science so much and how they came up with yet another campaign that deserves much attention (the ‘Evidence Hunter Activity Pack’), how facilitated communication is a thing in Sweden despite all the evidence that suggests it does not work at all, why we should be cautious with consuming #probiotics (thanks to Prof. Edzard Ernst for the heads up), plus Skepkon 2019, the German annual conference for skeptics organised by gwup | die skeptiker is coming up, while a Swedish acupuncturist is on trial for almost killing two patients and the county of Killarney in Ireland calls to remove #fluoride from drinking water, despite the lack of any indications that it could be harmful (while its benefits are many).

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

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

00:00:00 Intro

00:00:27 Greetings

00:04:33 This Week in Skepticism

Francis Bacon: English philosopher and Statesman, born on 22 January 1561.

00:09:54 Pontus Pokes the Pope

John Paul II once refused to shake Irish President’s hand because she was not a man, and Cardinal Arborelius threatens to leave Swedish Missionary Council because of abortions.

00:16:28 Skeptical News

UK: New educational material developed by Sense About Science: Evidence Hunter Activity Pack

SWEDEN: Facilitated communication

INTERNATIONAL: Probiotics are not risk free

GERMANY: Tickets released for SkepKon 2019

SWEDEN: Acupuncturist on trial for almost killing two customers

00:38:28 Really Wrong: IRELAND: Killarney Council wants to ban water flouridation

00:41:07 Farewell

00:43:04 Quote
“If a man will begin with certainties, he shall end in doubts; but if he will be content to begin with doubts, he shall end in certainties.”
/Francis Bacon

00:43:54 Outro

00:45:09 Out-takes

TheESP – Ep. #154 – Parli.co with Turi Munthe

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On this Episode:

This time with a very interesting interview with Turi Munthe (@turi), founder of Parli.co. Parli is a new web resource aiming to (yes it’s ambitious!) document all opinions in the world.
Give it a listen! It’s not as crazy as it may sound and it has potential to become a great asset for skeptics.

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

Segments:
Intro; Greetings; Interview with Julia Offe; Closing remarks; Wikipedia spot; Farewell; Outro; Out-takes

Show notes:

00:00:07: Intro

00:00:33: Greetings

00:02:14: Interview with Turi Munthe

00:36:31: Farewell

00:39:37: Outro

00:40:52: Out-takes

TheESP – Ep. #153 – New year resolutions, dating the World and standing up for Science

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Two weeks into the new year, our first episode of 2019 is finally hear and we can only hope it was worth the wait.
With the whole team together again, we are bringing you topics related to the New Year, including resolutions and hangovers, plus some science history and how James Ussher determined the age of the world (incorrectly), how Pope Francis tries to talk about families when the church is in turmoil over sex abuse scandals, a design company standing up for science in Italy, where the resigning head of the National Institute of Health slams the anti-science government, organ donation becoming opt-out in Ireland, Natalie Grams getting a nomination for the Golden Blogger award with her Twitter account, a new petition to sue French government over inaction on Climate change, Edzard Ernst‘s new book SCAM coming out in German, a new Spanish award for standing up for Science, an update on Measles and Vetenskap och Folkbildning announcing winners of the Enlightener and Bewilderer of the Year awards.

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

Show Notes:

00:00:00 Intro

00:00:27 Greetings

00:16:08 This week in Skepticism

00:24:09 Pontus Pokes the Pope
The (52nd) “World day of Peace”

00:28:01 Skeptical News

00:51:42 Really Wrong

SWEDEN: Bewilderer of the year 2018: Thomas Erikson
https://www.vof.se/blogg/arets-folkbildare-och-forvillare-2018/

00:57:39 Quote and Farewell

00:59:35 Outro

01:00:48 Out-takes

TheESP – Ep. #152 – Year End 2018

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A bit of a different episode this week, released on the last day of the year to remind our listeners (and ourselves) of the most important things that happened in 2018. Lots of interesting stuff and also what to look forward to in 2019.
We wish you all a really Happy New Year, and we’ll be seeing you!

Segments:
Intro; Greetings; Checking in with András; Woo in 2018; Skeptical initiatives 2018; Skeptical Awards 2018; QED; The ESP highlights of 2018; Outro; Out-takes

Show Notes:
00:00:00 Intro

00:00:28 Greetings

00:04:44 Checking in with András

00:11:06 Woo in 2018

00:13:53 Skeptical Initiatives in 2018

  1. Natalie Grams: Her book now available in English
  2. Massimo Polidoro: Strane Storie
  3. ProVaxx Challenge:  Czech Skeptics
  4. Factfulness: Hans Rosling’s Posthumous Book

00:15:56 Skeptical Awards in 2018

00:21:26 QED – Question, Explore Discover 2018

00:24:28 The ESP Highlights of 2018

00:36:15 Outro

00:37:30 Out-takes

TheESP – Ep. #151 – Newton’s birthday, the Pope’s promise, CICAP’s new chapter & Xmas in Sweden

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

Show Notes:
00:00:00 Intro

00:00:28 Greetings

00:06:36 This Week in Skepticism

  • Sir Isaac Newton (25 December 1642), brilliant figure of science and a keen alchemist.

00:12:29 Pontus Pokes the Pope

Pope: Church Will ‘Never Again’ Cover Up Clergy Sex Abuse.

00:19:13 Skeptical News from around Europe

  1. Italy: A new chapter of CICAP
  2. Ukraine: Measles epidemic is still here
  3. Spain: Spanish chiropractors fear for their jobs
  4. Sweden: Christmas is NOT renamed ‘Winter Celebration’

00:28:38 Skeptical Christmas Songs

00:29:17 Quote

“We are to admit no more causes of natural things than such as are both true and sufficient to explain their appearances. To this purpose the philosophers say that Nature does nothing in vain, and more is in vain when less will serve; for Nature is pleased with simplicity, and affects not the pomp of superfluous causes.”
1st rule (of 4) of scientific reasoning
/Isaac Newton, The Principia: Mathematical Principles of Natural Philosophy (1687), 3rd edition (1726)/

00:32:09 Outro

00:33:23 Out-takes

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 #149 – Julia Offe

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On this Episode:

This week Pontus and Jelena talks to German Science Communicator and Skeptic Julia Offe. Julia Offe has a PhD in molecular biology and is active within GWUP, the German Skeptics. We talk about the recently announced “Das Goldenes Bretts”-awards and other GWUP activities, as well as the Science Slam events that Julia is promoting in many different places with huge turnouts.

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

Segments:
Intro; Greetings; Interview with Julia Offe; Closing remarks; Wikipedia spot; Farewell; Outro; Out-takes

Show notes:

00:00:07: Intro

00:00:34: Greetings

00:03:11: Interview with Julia Offe

00:38:09: Closing remarks

00:45:41: Radio Spot

00:47:16: Farewell

00:47:48: Outro

00:49:03: Out-takes

TheESP – Ep #148 – Antonia de Oñate, Psuedoscience and Brexit fake news

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

Show Notes:
00:00:55 Greetings

This week we first hear about John Tyndall who understood climate change over a 100 years ago and talk about how Francis get things wrong while in Poland.
We then have a short catch up with Spanish skeptical activist Antonia de Oñate, before we dig into the regular news. In here we learn about homeopathy getting a beating in both Hungary and Austria, about a Swedish quack who is also a sex offender, a pro-vaccine campaign in Italy and a rather depressing measles update.
At the end the Daily Mail gets a Really Wrong Award for spreading fake Brexit news.

00:05:14 This Week in Skepticism

John Tyndall (2 August 1820 – 4 December 1893) who had discovered the molecular basis of the greenhouse effect

00:08:44  Pontus Pokes the Pope

In this edition of PPP Pontus talks about how Francis goes to Poland, blames children for cancer and gays for pedophilia.

00:14:44 Interview with Antonia de Oñate

00:31:32 Skeptical News from around Europe

  • Hungary: New proposal from the Department of Health to strike homeopathy off the national register of drugs

https://24.hu/belfold/2018/12/01/homeopatia-gyogyszer-torveny/

  • Sweden: Swedish “Kinesiologist” sentenced for sexual abuse

https://www.svd.se/domd-for-sexualbrott-mot-patient

  • Austria: The end of homeopathy in the medical school of University of Vienna

https://edzardernst.com/2018/11/the-end-of-homeopathy-at-the-medical-school-university-of-vienna/

  • World: Ginger: 10,000 times more effective at killing cancer cells than conventional drugs?

https://edzardernst.com/2018/11/ginger-10000-times-more-effective-at-killing-cancer-cells-than-conventional-drugs/

  • Italia: Italian govt running TV ads in favour of vaccination

https://youtu.be/QEKb2CWiqwU

  • World: Measles update

00:53:00 Really Wrong

  • The Really Wrong: Daily Mail fake news: German children banned by EU from sending letters to Santa

https://tompride.wordpress.com/2018/11/27/more-fake-news-from-mainstream-journalists-trying-to-influence-brexit/

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-6416453/German-children-banned-sending-Christmas-wishlists-Santa-GDPR.html

00:57:54 Quote

“The danger to society is not merely that it should believe wrong things, though that is great enough; but that it should become credulous, and lose the habit of testing things and inquiring into them; for then it must sink back into savagery.”/ William Kingdon Clifford

01:00:06 Outro

01:01:21 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