Darwin Day is coming up, and I am happy to announce a new series on the issue of evolution, science, religion, reason, and faith from our friends at The Clergy Letter Project and Darkwood Brew. The series is titled “Evolving Universe / Evolving Faith” and it starts on Sunday, Feb. 10th; check out the trailer below:
Posts Tagged ‘TV’
Posted by mattusmaximus on February 10, 2013
Posted in creationism, religion, scientific method, skeptical community | Tagged: atheism, birthday, celebration, Charles Darwin, Clergy Letter Project, creationism, Darkwood Brew, Darwin Day, evolution, Evolution Weekend, evolving, faith, February 12, God, humanism, ID, intelligent design, International Darwin Day Foundation, religion, science, secuarlism, series, TV, universe | Leave a Comment »
Posted by mattusmaximus on November 3, 2012
I just ran across this parody of the “History” Channel by some folks calling themselves the EVP Patrol Squad. They are spoofing the various pseudoscientific “experts” that are regularly paraded out on that channel in favor of various ancient alien, paranormal, and ghostly claims. The funny thing is that if you actually watch some of the stuff on the History Channel, it is so goofy that it almost seems that this is straight from one of their shows – so this is good evidence of Poe’s Law. Enjoy!
I don’t know about you all, but I don’t think that I’ll ever be able to look a sporks the same again. The horror… THE HORROR!!!
Posted in aliens & UFOs, ghosts & paranormal, humor, skeptical community | Tagged: aliens, ancient astronauts, cable, EVP Patrol Squad, ghosts, History Channel, humor, mystery, Mystory, paranormal, parody, Poe, Poe's Law, Soundiron, spoof, spork, TV, UFO, video, youtube | 2 Comments »
Posted by mattusmaximus on March 24, 2012
Given the amazing success of the Reason Rally this weekend in Washington, DC (roughly 20,000 secularists/atheists/non-religious people showing up in the rain is a success to me ), it seems more than appropriate that the Freedom From Religion Foundation runs an ad which will receive a nationwide airing on CBS on Sunday and Monday. The ad opens with President John F. Kennedy’s famous remarks about an absolute separation between church and state. Here’s the ad:
Wonderfully done, and well-timed. This is an especially important time for those of us in the non-believing community to step up and be counted, given the preponderance of religiously-oriented stupidity on display in election-year politics these days. If we hope to uphold church-state separation and fight back against those who would turn our secular republic into a theocracy, we need to get vocal and get active!
Hat tip to The Friendly Atheist for bringing this to my attention!
Posted in politics, religion | Tagged: 2012, ad, advertisement, atheism, atheist, CBS, conservatives, election, FFRF, Freedom From Religion Foundation, God, gods, government, JFK, John F. Kennedy, news, nonbeliever, nonreligious, politics, Reason Rally, religion, religious right, secular, secularists, separation of church and state, television, The Friendly Atheist, TV, United States | 1 Comment »
Posted by mattusmaximus on August 25, 2011
In a welcome break from some of the usual credulousness that seems to permeate the modern media landscape regarding all things paranormal, recently ABC News did an episode of “Beyond Belief” on the topic of psychics and mediums. Titled “Can Psychics Really Talk to the Dead?”, the episode focused upon famed dead-talker James Van Praagh. The interview of Van Praagh by Josh Elliot is excellent, as Elliot is respectful but appropriately skeptical of Van Praagh’s claims, especially when he conducts a bit of a deeper investigation beyond simply swallowing Van Praagh’s parlor act whole. In the interview, Elliot even nails Van Praagh for using time-tested tricks such as cold reading…
Another well-done segment in the show focused on the James Randi Educational Foundation’s Million Dollar Challenge to anyone who can display, under a properly controlled setting, evidence of supernatural or paranormal abilities. It is important to note that in the following video, all of the claimants agreed to the conditions of the tests they underwent before the tests took place. After agreeing to these conditions, it is telling that upon seeing their obvious failure, the psychics still insisted they had legitimate psychic powers and also complained about how the test “wasn’t fair” (even though they agreed it was fair before they failed). Take a look at this segment at this link (it’s the video at the bottom of the article).
So, even though they agreed to the test ahead of time, were fully informed of the conditions of the test and what was required to declare success and the million dollars, and the fact they were predicting (quite confidently in some cases) that they were “sure to win the money”, they all failed – and failed spectacularly. But then they turn around and blame the skeptics for not making the test fair; I’m sure that if they had won the million dollars they’d be saying the test was fair!
To read more about the entire show and get a skeptical perspective on how it went, check out the JREF’s blog post on the matter.
Posted in psychics, skeptical community | Tagged: ABC, ABC News, Banacheck, belief, Beyond Belief, cable, Can Psychics Really Talk to the Dead, cards, cold reading, dead, James Randi, James Randi Educational Foundation, James Van Praagh, Josh Elliot, JREF, media, mediums, Million Dollar Challenge, million dollars, news, Nightline, palm, palmistry, Prime Time, prize, psychics, reader, reading, show, talking to the dead, tarot, television, trick, TV, Van Praagh | 1 Comment »
Posted by mattusmaximus on July 5, 2011
Well, another Skepchicon/Convergence has come and gone, and once again I had a blast in Minneapolis. Of course, it wasn’t all play – though there was plenty of that (as evidenced with the photo of me below in the Mos Icee Cantina ) – because I participated in a number of good panels on a variety of topics related to skepticism and science. I recorded every panel in which I took part, and I reproduce this audio along with a brief description of the panel for you below. Enjoy!
Modern Day Snake Oil – in this panel, the topic of various forms of alternative “medicine” were discussed, from homeopathy to magnetic therapy.
To Vaxx or Not To Vaxx – here we discussed the anti-vaccination movement and why their pseudoscience is dangerous. Also discussed were some facts about how vaccines do and don’t work, and why it is so important that people vaccinate even if they think it isn’t necessary.
Stuff I Didn’t Know – the panelists share with the audience some of the neat things they’ve learned recently, and the audience gets in on the action as well.
Common Hollywood Science Myths – we all like going to the movies or watching our favorite shows on TV/cable, but boy oh boy does Hollywood screw up a lot of science in the process of entertaining us. The panelists share some of their pet peeves and also compliment Hollywood when they get it right.
Ask A Scientist Open Forum – just as the name suggests, this panel consisted of audience members asking the panel a variety of questions on everything from the Big Bang to dentistry!
Posted in skeptical community | Tagged: alt-med, alternative medicine, anti-vaccination, anti-vaxx, CAM, con, convention, Convergence, fantasy, Fourth of July, Hollywood, July 4th, Minneapolis, Minnesota, movies, myths, sCAM, science, science fiction, Skepchick, Skepchicon, skeptic, skeptic track, skepticism, TV, vaccines, vaxx, Women Thinking Free Foundation, WTF, WTFF | 3 Comments »
Posted by mattusmaximus on November 24, 2010
I just wanted to take a moment to pass along a request from Dr. Pamela Gay for help from teachers regarding a new skeptically-oriented show she & Brian Dunning are attempting to get started for public television. For more details, I’ll refer you to Dr. Steve Novella’s post on this…
You may remember The Skeptologists – a TV pilot featuring a group of skeptical investigators taking on a range of pseudoscientific claims. Well – that project is not over, although it has morphed a bit. The working title of the show is now The Edge. And, rather than try to get a commercial TV executive to bite on the idea, the producers (Brian Dunning and Ryan Johnson) are trying to get a grant to produce a season for public television. It’s still an uphill battle, but they are making progress. Phil Plait has moved on with his Discovery Channel contract, including Phil Plait’s Bad Universe. So, Pamela Gay has stepped in to fill his role on the show.
Pamela is also helping with the grant – and she has asked for help. She needs to show that there is demand for the kind of content we aim to produce, and this is where you (potentially) come in.
So, if you are a teacher and you would use content like The Edge – essentially scientists exploring critical thinking and the evidence as it pertains to specific claims – then send an e-mail to Pamela Gay (email@example.com) with a letter, addressed to her and Brian Dunning, that says you would use the content in your class. …
Click here for the rest of the post – and please consider passing this along to all of the teachers whom you know who could use the content provided by this new show
Posted in education, skeptical community | Tagged: Brian Dunning, critical thinking, Pamela Gay, pilot, pseudoscience, public, science, show, skepticism, Skeptologists, television, The Edge, TV | Leave a Comment »
Posted by mattusmaximus on August 15, 2010
I am pleased to announce that “Bad Astronomer” Phil Plait – author of the Bad Astronomy blog – will have his own television show this coming fall on the Discovery Channel called Bad Universe! Way to go, Phil!!!
I know that Phil’s been working on this for a long time, and it’s hard as hell to get skeptical & scientific shows on cable nowadays, so I want to do all I can to get people to tune in. So with that, check out the sneak peak of Bad Universe…
Coming this fall to Discovery, a new series that debunks all the junk about the Universe! Phil Plait is an astronomer on a mission to challenge the myths of the universe with scientific proof.
Posted in skeptical community, space | Tagged: astronomy, Bad Astronomer, Bad Astronomy, Bad Universe, cable, Discovery Channel, Phil Plait, science, skeptic, skepticism, space, television, TV, universe | Leave a Comment »
Posted by mattusmaximus on June 14, 2010
Wow… this is bad news, folks. Uber anti-vaccine loon Jenny “Body Count” McCarthy is getting her own television show thanks to Oprah Winfrey. We should all be on the lookout, because I think if we thought that McCarthy’s whacky alt-med, anti-vax, and just plain goofy views on medical science in general were getting a lot of press, just wait until her TV show hits the airwaves. Ugh…
June 14, 2010, 12:19 PM EST
The Playboy model-turned-actress has landed a development deal with Winfrey’s Harpo Productions.
Harpo executives have not elaborated on the content of McCarthy’s series, but they insist it won’t be in a similar format to the TV star’s current chat show, “The Oprah Winfrey Show,” which will go off the air next year.
Executives have yet to confirm if McCarthy’s series will launch on Winfrey’s new TV network, the Oprah Winfrey Network (OWN).
A Harpo spokeswoman tells the New York Post, “We do not have anyone taking over for Oprah. We do have a development deal with Jenny McCarthy. We are exploring possibilities across a number of platforms.”
In response to Oprah’s utterly dumbfounding decision to grant McCarthy this broader platform to spread her nonsense, I can only say…
Posted in medical woo | Tagged: anti-vaccination, anti-vax, anti-vaxxers, autism, Big Pharma, children, Jenny McCarthy, medicine, Oprah Winfrey, Oprah Winfrey Network, television, TV, vaccination, vaccines | Leave a Comment »