Tagged: skeptic

“Fair-weather” scepticism - Open Parachute

Ken Perrott Mar 31, 2015

My old man used to label us kids as “fair-weather sailors” when we bitched about working outside during bad weather. That phrase comes to my mind sometimes when I come across people who claim to be “sceptics ” (“Skeptics”) behaving very unsceptically when confronted with a claim outside their area of interest. For example, someone who … … Continue reading … Read More

God, UFOs, Life After Death: What do New Zealanders Believe? - Skepticon

Darcy Cowan Dec 07, 2011

Reading the paper today I learned that 1/3 of New Zealanders believe that we have been visited by extra terrestrials. I thought this was an interesting juxtaposition of stories given that a page or two later there was a report about a possibly habitable planet. Maybe aliens are visiting us from Kepler-22b. Keplerites aside, I … Read More

Breaking News!: Have Constipation? Moxibustion Won’t Help! - Skepticon

Darcy Cowan Dec 06, 2011

What’s Moxibustion, And why would you want to use it for constipation? The first I can answer, the second…not so much. Moxibustion is the practice of burning ground up mugwort and applying the smouldering plant indirectly or directly to the skin to alleviate illness. In the indirect method acupuncture needles are inserted and the burning … Read More

Confounding Variables - Skepticon

Darcy Cowan Nov 01, 2011

Over at Psychology in Action there’s a decent post on confounding variables. The focus is on conducting and reading research and determining good research study practice but I think there is value in everyone knowing what confounding variables are.  So what are they? Well, read that post…… Ok, good. Another example that I got in [...] … Read More

Converting beliefs to ’truths’ - Open Parachute

Ken Perrott Jun 10, 2011

Michael Shermer‘s latest book looks interesting – The Believing Brain: From Ghosts and Gods to Politics and Conspiracies—How We Construct Beliefs and Reinforce Them as Truths. Chris Mooney interviews him about the book in the latest Point of Inquiry podcast … Continue reading → … Read More

Holy Hyperbole Batman!! - Skepticon

Darcy Cowan May 25, 2011

Apparently the Armageddon predicted by Harold Camping is not the only one we have to contend with. Watch out, it’s The Next Armageddon! Did you know that the WHO is not the health promoting organization we think it is but really the most nefarious institution in human history?[1] According to one conspiracy nut[2] the WHO [...] … Read More

It’s the End of the World as we Know it and I Feel Fine - Skepticon

Darcy Cowan May 17, 2011

By now you will have probably heard that this Saturday (21-May-2011 for future historians) is the beginning of the end, the Rapture. Don’t panic*, please conduct yourselves in an orderly manner at the appointed time. I recommend congregating in open spaces with no overhead power lines or air traffic. Safety first[1]. Ok that’s enough fun. [...] … Read More

Amber Teething Beads: A Few Points to Consider - Skepticon

Darcy Cowan Feb 21, 2011

Being a new parent and a sceptic I have been on guard regarding dubious advice and practices. Parents, especially new parents like myself, are a vulnerable group. We tend to be full of anxiety that we are doing the “right thing” by our children. Where-ever you find a vulnerable group like this you also tend [...] … Read More

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