Episode #021, feat. Marit M. Simonsen

 
Marit M SimonsenOn this episode, you’ll find news, events and interesting topics, along with an interview, featuring Norwegian blogger, podcaster, science educator and skeptical activist, Marit M. Simonsen, who’s also the former president of the Norwegian skeptic society Skepsis. She’s often referred to as “The Queen of Norwegian Skepticism”.
Segments
Intro; Greetings & Listener feedback; On this day; What’s on in Europe?; What’s hot in Europe?; Interview with Marit M. Simonsen; Logical Fallacies; Really Wrong; Quote
 
Show notes:
00:00:00
INTRO music
 
00:00:23
Greetings & feedback
00:07:19
On This Day: 20th April
Thomas Henry Huxley (Born 4th May 1825) aka “Darwin’s Bulldog”
00:17:18
What’s on in Europe?
00:24:31
What’s Hot in Europe?
  1. Aphrodisiac banned by Hungarian authorities
  2. Doubtful News goes on an indefinite hiatus
  3. ComCept writing an open letter to Visao
00:33:44
Interview with Marit M. Simonsen
01:07:15
Logical Fallacies – False dilemma
01:12:11
Really Wrong: The Telegraph for bad reporting on the topic of the health effects of eating chocolate
01:17:34
Quote
“Science knows no country because knowledge belongs to humanity, and is the torch which illuminates the world. Science is the highest personification of the nation because that nation will remain the first which carries the furthest the works of thought and intelligence.”
/Louis Pasteur/
 
01:23:57
Outro
 
01:25:13
Out-takes

Episode #020, feat. Chris Peters from Sense About Science

Chris PetersAlong with a usual run-through of feedback and events across Europe in the coming week, this episode is dedicated to our interview with Chris Peters, the scientific affairs manager at Sense About Science, the UK-based non-profit organisation behind such campaigns as ‘Ask for Evidence’ and ‘Libel Reform’, the ‘Plant Science’ and ‘Energy Online Expert’ panels, as well as the international ‘AllTrials’ campaign.
 
(Photo was taken at the 16th European Skeptics Congress in London, 2015)
 
Segments:
Introduction and greetings; Events in Europe; Interview with Chris Peters; Outro
  
Show notes:
00:00:00
INTRO music
  
00:00:26
Introduction and greetings
00:11:58
Events in Europe
00:18:20
Interview with Chris Peters, the scientific affairs manager at Sense About Science.
01:02:42
Farewell
 
01:04:40
Outro
 
01:05:55
Out-takes

Episode #019, feat. Dr Julia Offe

 

Julia OffeOn this episode, you’ll find news, events and interesting topics, along with an interview, featuring Dr Julia Offe, board member of the German skeptical organisation GWUP (Society for the Scientific Investigation of Parasciences), head of Hamburg Skeptics, founder of Hamburg Skeptics in the Pub and Science Slam, as well as one of the organisers of SkepKon. 
 
Segments:
Intro; Greetings & feedback; On this day; What’s on in Europe?; What’s hot in Europe?; Interview with Dr. Julia Offe; Logical Fallacies; Really Wrong; Quote
 
Show notes:
00:00:00
INTRO music
 
00:00:27
Greetings & feedback
00:19:53
On This Day: 20th April
Adolf Hitler (born 20 April 1889) 
00:33:50
What’s on in Europe?
00:42:54
What’s Hot in Europe?
  1. Italian doctor fighting anti-vaxxers
  2. Graphology expelled from court rooms in Hungary
  3. An electromagnetic sensitivity case in Sweden
  4. EU ruling that might have a devastating effect on health care
00:55:08
Interview with Dr. Julia Offe
01:11:38
Logical Fallacies – Ad hominem argument
01:16:11
Really Wrong: To the ‘Association of Catholic Doctors’, believers in religious nonsense, claiming to treat something that is not a disease, with something that is not medicine.
01:21:39
Quote
“Because a fact seems strange to you, you conclude that it is not one. … All science, however, commences by being strange. Science is successive. It goes from one wonder to another. It mounts by a ladder. The science of to-day would seem extravagant to the science of a former time. Ptolemy would believe Newton mad.”
/Victor Hugo, French novelist/
 
 
01:23:57
Outro
 
01:25:13
Out-takes

Episode #018, feat. Massimo Polidoro

 
Massimo Polidoro
Along with a usual run-through of feedback and events across Europe in the coming week, this episode is dedicated to our interview with Italian psychologist, author and investigator Massimo Polidoro, who’s co-founder and executive director of the Italian skeptic organisation CICAP (Comitato Italiano per il Controllo delle Affermazioni sulle Pseudoscienze or Italian Committee for the Investigation of Claims of the Pseudosciences).
(Photo was taken by Roberta Baria and is used under CC BY-SA 4.0 license)
 
Segments:
Introduction and greetings; On This Day; Events in Europe; Interview with Massimo Polidoro; Outro
  
Show notes:
00:00:00
INTRO music
  
00:00:34
Introduction and greetings
00:05:04
On This Day
13th April: the birthday of Christopher Hitchens
00:10:09
Events in Europe
00:24:31
Interview with Massimo Polidoro
01:03:41
Farewell
 
01:04:10
Outro
 
01:05:25
Out-takes

Episode #017, feat. Marko Kovic

  
Featuring a short interview with Marko Kovic, president of the Swiss skeptical organisation Skeptiker Schweiz. We talked about the recent developments of the status of alternative medicine in Switzerland.
 
Segments:
Intro; Greetings & Listener feedback; On this day; What’s on in Europe?; What’s hot in Europe?; Interview with Marko Kovic; Logical Fallacies; Really Wrong; True or False?; Quote
 
Show notes:
00:00:00
INTRO music
 
00:00:36
Greetings & Listener feedback
00:13:35
On This Day: 6th April
Jules Jean Baptiste Vincent Bordet (Died 6 Apr 1961 at age 90): Belgian bacteriologist and immunologist who discovered (1895) the complement, a complex of proteins in the blood that causes the destruction of foreign cells in an immune response. In 1906, he isolated the bacterium responsible for
whooping cough
, which is named after him – Bordetella (Haemophilus) pertussis – and for which he developed a vaccine. He also isolated a number of other pathogenic bacteria. For his discovery of immunity factors in blood serum, he received the Nobel Prize
for
Physiology or Medicine in 1919. This development was vital to the diagnosis and treatment of many dangerous contagious bacterial diseases. For example, it is the basis of the Wassermann test for syphilis.
 
00:18:23
What’s on in Europe?
00:23:07
What’s Hot in Europe?
  1. Acupuncture, chiropractic and osteopathy no longer recommended by NICE for lower back pain in the UK
  2. Switzerland embraces alternative medicine
  3. Hoaxes related to Brussels bombing
00:38:09
Interview with Marko Kovic
01:03:07
Logical Fallacies – Stolen concept fallacy
01:09:47
Really Wrong: András
 
01:10:03
True or False
  1. Study shown that Expensive placebos and cheap placebos have the same effect
  2. Coffee drinkers are more likely to see dead people
  3. A blind person can get his sight back by implanting a tooth in his eyes
01:21:42
Quote
“The invention of the scientific method and science is, I’m sure we’ll all agree, the most powerful intellectual idea, the most powerful framework for thinking and investigating and understanding and challenging the world around us that there is, and it rests on the premise that any idea is there to be attacked. If it withstands the attack then it lives to fight another day and if it doesn’t withstand the attack then down it goes.”
/Douglas Noel Adams, author of ‘The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy’/
 
01:23:28
Outro
 
01:24:44
Out-takes
 
 
 

Episode #016, feat. James “The Amaz!ng” Randi

 
James Randi
Along with a usual run-through of feedback and events across Europe in the coming week, this episode is dedicated to our interview with the “Face of the skeptical movement” (quote from Ray Hyman): James “The Amaz!ng” Randi. He’s a Canadian-born retired magician, escapologist and paranormal investigator, author of 10 books, contributor of countless TV shows and films, co-founder of the Committee for Skeptical Inquiry and founder of the Educational Foundation bearing his name. He also played a role in the kickstarting of several European skeptical organisations.

(Photo is in the public domain and was taken by Susan Gerbic)

 
Segments:
Introduction and greetings; Events in Europe; Interview with James Randi; Outro
  
Show notes:
00:00:00
INTRO music
  
00:00:35
Introduction and greetings
00:10:39
Events in Europe
00:13:52
Interview with James “The Amaz!ng” Randi
01:12:49
Farewell
 
01:15:32
Outro
 
01:16:47
Out-takes

Episode #015, feat. Antonia de Oñate

  
Featuring a short interview with Antonia de Oñate, CEO of the Spanish skeptical organisation Spanish Rational Alternative to Pseudoscience – Society for the Promotion of Critical Thinking (ARP-SAPC)
 
Segments:
Intro; Greetings & Listener feedback; On this day; What’s on in Europe?; What’s hot in Europe?; Interview with Vassy and Liubo; Logical Fallacies; Really Wrong; Quote
 
Show notes:
00:00:00
INTRO music
 
00:00:33
Greetings & Listener feedback
00:09:13
On This Day: 23rd March
Daniel Bovet (23 March 1907 – 8 April 1992), Swiss-born Italian pharmacologist who won the 1957 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine.
He also led a study team which concluded that smoking of tobacco cigarettes increased users’ intelligence…
 
00:16:23
What’s on in Europe?
Please, check out the Skeptic Calendar of Events in Europe!
 
00:19:21
What’s Hot in Europe?
  1. Escalating situation for Homeopathy in Spain
  2. Brittany mayors stage ‘Druid healer’ hoax to highlight shortage of doctors
  3. Italian anti-GMO paper retracted

  4. UK government to ban academics from lobbying
  5. Flying Unicorn Award by ComCept
00:46:57
Interview with Antonia de Oñate
01:14:30
Logical Fallacies – False attribution (also known as argument from false authority). Appealing to an irrelevant, unqualified, unidentified, biased or fabricated source in support of an argument.
01:18:29
 
01:19:31
Really Wrong: Håkan Ericsson, coach for the Swedish national under-21 football team, for using HeartMath products.
01:25:19
Quote
“I would teach the world that science is the best way to understand the world, and that for any set of observations, there is only one correct explanation. Also, science is value-free, as it explains the world as it is. Ethical issues arise only when science is applied to technology – from medicine to industry.”
/Lewis Wolpert, British developmental biologist, author, and broadcaster/
 
01:26:34
Outro
 
01:27:49
Out-takes
 
 

Episode #014, feat. Prof Willem Betz

 
Prof Willem Betz

Along with a usual run-through of feedback and events across Europe in the coming week, this episode is dedicated to our interview with Belgian skeptic and co-founder of SKEPP, Professor Willem Betz. We talk about his great work as a skeptic and how he became disillusioned about alternative medicine, but he also tells us what actions he would like to see in the movement on a European level. (photo used under CC0 1.0 licence)

 
Segments:
Introduction and greetings; Feedback; Events in Europe; Interview with Prof. Willem Betz; Outro 
  
Show notes:
00:00:00
INTRO music
  
00:00:27
Introduction and greetings
 
00:00:55
Feedback
 
00:08:06
Events in Europe
00:13:33
Interview with Prof. Willem Betz
01:04:07
Farewell
 
01:05:03
Outro
 
01:06:18
Out-takes

Episode #013, feat. Vassilena Valchanova & Liubomir Baburov

  
Featuring a short interview with Vassilena Valchanova and Liubomir Baburov, founders of the Bulgarian organisation called Ratio and organisers of Sofia Skeptics in the Pub.
 
Segments:
Intro; Greetings & Listener feedback; On this day; What’s on in Europe?; What’s hot in Europe?; Interview with Vassy and Liubo; Logical Fallacies; Really Wrong; Quote
 
Show notes:
00:00:00
INTRO music
  
00:00:28
Greetings & Listener feedback
00:06:44
On This Day: 9th March
Yuri Alekseyevich Gagarin (Russian: Ю́рий Алексе́евич Гага́рин, 9 March 1934 – 27 March 1968) was a Russian Soviet pilot and cosmonaut. He was the first human to journey into outer space when his Vostok spacecraft completed an orbit of the Earth on 12 April 1961.
 
“Looking at the earth from afar you realize it is too small for conflict and just big enough for co-operation.”
 
00:15:08
What’s on in Europe?

Please, check out the Skeptic Calendar of Events in Europe! 

00:18:00
What’s Hot in Europe?
  1. The Good Thinking Society investigates chiropractors and osteopaths
  2. Follow-up on colloidal silver
  3. University of Barcelona puts and end to its Homeopathy Masters programme

  4. Spanish man killed by ignorance
  5. Russian man on trial for ‘no God’ comment in internet chat
00:38:41
Interview with Vassilena Valchanova and Liubomir Baburov
01:04:05
Logical Fallacies – Fake precision fallacy
01:06:25
Really Wrong: 
 
Update: Karolinska Institutet – for failing to protect the public from the actions of a quack
This week: Elke Sleurs, Belgian State Secretary for Equal Opportunities, for training police in retrieving “suppressed memories” using hypnosis
01:12:22
True of False
  1. It has been discovered that when dung beetles get lost, they can navigate their way home by looking at the milky way
  2. 14th Century Chinese leader Giocangga managed, to father 867 children, and, therefore, became father to 1.2 million descendants
  3. Researchers discovered that chimpanzees can identify other chimpanzees individually from seeing photographs of their rear ends
01:24:42
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, won Nobel Prize in Chemistry/
 
01:25:27
Outro
 
01:26:42
Out-takes