This week we wrap up the year and wish all our listeners a Happy Holiday. We revisit something we got wrong about Das Goldene Brett last week and celebrate the birthday of Johannes Kepler.
For Pontus Pokes the Pope we examine what the Pontifical Secret is all about and what it may mean when Francis now has declared it cannot be used to hide sex abuse. We also deliver our first ever film review, on the rather nice but totally fictional movie ‘The Two Popes’.
In the news we talk about Chemophobia, HPV vaccinations for boys and again marvel at the stupidity of the Prince of Wales. We also discuss doctors paying for positive on-line reviews, the measles situation in Turkey (it’s bad) and how anti-vaxxers and making millions from ‘natural supplements’ goes hand in hand. Also, the supreme court in the Netherlands has upheld a ruling against the government for not doing enough to fight climate change.
We end the episode and the year by looking back to find that several good things happened too in 2019, even if they sometimes go unnoticed or are quickly forgotten.
Intro; Greetings; This Week; Pontus Pokes the Pope; News; Really Right; Quote and Farewell; Outro; Out-takes
Events Calendar: http://theesp.eu/events_in_europe
Correction from last week’s mention of the satirical prize ‘Das Goldene Brett‘. No, the name is NOT a biblical reference.
0:07:22 THIS WEEK IN SKEPTICISM
Johannes Kepler was born on 27 December 1571. He was a German astronomer, mathematician and astrologer
- Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy: https://plato.stanford.edu/entries/kepler/
0:11:55 PONTUS POKES THE POPE
No more Secrets!? Plus a Bonus Film Review of ‘The Two Popes’
- Pontifical Secret (Wikipedia): https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pontifical_secret
- Crux: https://cruxnow.com/vatican/2019/12/pope-abolishes-pontifical-secret-in-abuse-cases-raises-age-for-child-porn/
- The Guardian: https://www.theguardian.com/world/2019/dec/17/pope-francis-ends-pontifical-secrecy-rule-child-sexual-abuse-catholic-church
- ‘The Two Popes’ (IMDB): https://www.imdb.com/title/tt8404614/
- EUROPE: Chemophobia: Nearly 40% of Europeans Want a Chemical-Free World
- American Council on Science and Health: https://www.acsh.org/news/2019/12/18/chemophobia-nearly-40-europeans-want-chemical-free-world-14465
- FRANCE: Ministry of Health Recommends HPV Vaccination for Boys
- UK: HRH The Prince of Wales is announced as College of Medicine Patron
- GERMANY: Doctors Pay for Positive On-Line Reviews
- TURKEY: Measles Cases Quadrupled in 2019
- INTERNATIONAL: Anti-Vaxxer has Made Millions on Natural Health Products
- NETHERLANDS: Supreme court rules demand for climate action
0:45:25 REALLY RIGHT
A List of Things in 2019 That Made the World a Better Place
- 350 million trees in Ethiopia (BBC): https://www.bbc.com/news/world-africa-49151523
- Climate Education in Italy (Euronews): https://www.euronews.com/2019/11/07/italy-introduces-mandatory-climate-change-lessons-in-schools
- First ‘Picture’ of a Black Hole (BBC): https://www.bbc.com/news/science-environment-47873592
- First Female Space Walk (the Guardian): https://www.theguardian.com/science/2019/oct/18/nasa-all-female-spacewalk-christina-koch-jessica-meir
- Jodrell Bank Observatory in the UK (BBC): https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-england-manchester-48893080
- Humback Whales Population (the Smithsonian): https://www.smithsonianmag.com/smart-news/south-atlantic-humpback-whales-have-rebounded-brink-extinction-180973591/
- Abortions Now Legal in Northern Ireland (the New Scientist): https://www.newscientist.com/article/2220714-abortion-is-now-no-longer-illegal-in-northern-ireland/
- First Commercial Electric Flight (the Guardian): https://www.theguardian.com/world/2019/dec/11/worlds-first-fully-electric-commercial-aircraft-takes-flight-in-canada
- Carnivore Populations in the UK (the Guardian): https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2019/feb/24/britain-carnivore-badger-stoat-otter-pine-marten-numbers-increasing
- Public Founding on Homeopathy in France to be Phased out (the Guardian): https://www.theguardian.com/world/2019/jul/10/france-to-stop-reimbursing-patients-for-homeopathic-treatment
- No More Anthroposophy in Sweden (SVT): https://www.svt.se/nyheter/lokalt/sodertalje/vidarkliniken-fran-pionjarsandan-till-konkursen
0:52:50 QUOTE AND FAREWELL
“To explain all nature is too difficult a task for any one man or even for any one age. ‘Tis much better to do a little with certainty, & leave the rest for others that come after you, than to explain all things by conjecture without making sure of any thing.”
(Statement from unpublished notes for the ‘Preface to Opticks’ (1704) quoted in ‘Never at Rest: A Biography of Isaac Newton’ from 1983 by Richard S. Westfall)
/ Sir Isaac Newton, (25 December 1642 – 20 March 1726/27), English mathematician, physicist, astronomer, theologian and author /