Podcast #45 - May 31st, 2006
News Items: Skeptics Guide Forum, 9/11 footage, UK Doctors fight against Alt Med; Your E-mails: Cancer Cures, Dream Interpretation, Science vs God, Sun's temperature; Name That Logical Fallacy; Science or Fiction
- New Skeptics Guide Forum The Skeptics Guide forum is now open, so sign up and check it out. You can link to it from the home page.
- New 9/11 Footage www.cbsnews.com/stories/2006/05/16/terror/main1622101.shtml
Good article debunking 9/11 myths
- UK Docs fight against Alt Med news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/health/5007118.stm
Homeopathy article by Dr. Novella
Questions and E-mails
- Cancer Cures Hi
Here's something I think you should take a look at: kisscancergoodbye.com
Ken Nickels claims that he cured himself from stage 4 testicular cancer, bladder cancer, liver cancer, and cancer of the lymph nodes, by holistic healing which included lifestyle changes, diet, exercise, rest, prayer, and a holistic medical regiment including Chinese medicine.
He claims that it is much better than chemotherapy or/and radiation.
I'm very skeptical, but id like to here you thoughts on the matter.
- Dream Interpretation Hello,
I am a graduate student in Houston, Texas studying cell biology in Dictyostelium (a model organism). I have really appreciated listening to your show. I especially enjoy the Science or Fiction segment. The audio quality seems to be improving every podcast. Have you ever thought about adding forums to the NESS website? I contribute to several skeptical discussion forums, but I believe the NESS audience may be more scientifically literate than other skeptical websites. I am sure many of your listeners would like a place to discuss the topics on your show.
I do have one question. There is a syndicated talk show put on by the Dream Doctor (www.dreamdoctor.com) I have listened to the show a couple of times, and it sounds like it is simple cold reading with a twist. He asked people to describe their dreams, and then he analyzes the dreams. After asking personal questions, he then provides an answer to what the dream is telling the person. Do you believe that there is any legitimacy to the connection of dreams and psychological well-being?
Keep up the good work,
- Science vs God Hi folks.
Love your podcast. I want to comment on what appears to be a slight confusion from your April 11 podcast. Hoping you can clear this up. When you spoke of the astounding odds against two species having similar DNA by chance, you seemed to be saying this as an argument favoring evolution over God. First of all, why make any comment on God at all, since to do so is to immediately leave the realm of science. You then mentioned how God would've had to have deliberately designed species to appear related if such slight DNA variations were in place by design. Fair enough, but in what way do odds to cited actually favor an anti God view? I found this a little confusing. Thanks!
- Surface of the Sun I was listening to the May 24, 2006 Podcast of The Skeptics Guide to the Universe. Again, a great program!
I did catch one mistaken comment by Randi and the group. The topic discussed was whether a hydrogen torch could match the temperature of the surface of the sun and it was quickly 'poo poo'd'. However, the host and guest comments seemed to indicate a misunderstanding of the temperatures at the core of the sun vs. the surface temperature.
1: The temperature on the surface of the sun = 11,000 degrees Fahrenheit
2: The temperature of a hydrogen torch >= 6000 degrees Fahrenheit (based on first product found on the WWW)
This was based on 2 minutes and indicate that the underlying claim is not unreasonable. More knowledgeable listeners would likely be able to improve on my observations and data points.
- Fighting Quackery Greetings,
My in-laws are into 'natural medicine.' They watch tapes by Dr. Lorraine Day and Dr. Richard Schulze. They purchase products by them and use them all the time. They juice with only organic fruits every morning and they add the purchased additives. They are both retired and in great health.
They rarely get sick and they aren't nearly as run down as they were before they started following the info on these tapes. They preach about the evils of modern medicine to anyone that will listen. They claim that doctors are suppressing cures for diseases, that the AMA threatens these natural Doctors, that doctors want you to get sick so they can cure you, etc, etc.
The problem is that they are blaming their fine health on the tapes and products sold by these quacks. They don't remember the other factor that could have led to their good health; Retiring. That means less stress, less contact with people, less standing for several hours a day, and better diet.
They also know just enough about this topic to be dangerous. They recently took in my wife's grandmother to live with them and forbade her from taking pills. They put her on an organic regimen and fed her quackery products. Grandma almost died, but she finally went to a doctor who put her back on medicine and now she's stronger than ever.
What I don't understand is how on one hand they can be so skeptical and at the same time be so naive. They don't trust the medical profession at all and are very skeptical of modern medicine, but when it comes to these quacks they believe everything they are told. I think it is interesting how the quacks use skepticism to their advantage.
I wanted to ask what I can do when conversation steers toward the quackery. I don't have many tools to deal with this, but I want to at least protect my wife from their influence. I need some suggestions to help them see these quacks are only out for personal gain. I tried to point out in the past that while they claim doctors are only out for money, the quacks aren't giving away products for free.
Dr.'s like this also try to have they people see them as the underdog, shunned by society and silenced by authority. Here is an example of this:
Can you point me in the right direction to get info to combat this? Thanks!
Name That Logical Fallacy
- Logical Fallacies From: Dr. Shulze (ND) Natural Healing Publications
'Dr. Schulze never takes credit for his healing knowledge. In fact he often says that his patients or even God taught him everything. Regardless of who developed these programs and formulae, one thing we do know is, THEY WORK!
We know this because for almost a decade now, thousands of people just like you, that have never met him and never talked to him, have healed themselves of ANY and ALL Diseases using his powerful and effective Natural Healing Programs and Herbal Formulae.
Sure, they shut down his clinic and boarded up his windows, but NO ONE can stop this great man's passion and mission. He is ALIVE and WELL and his VOICE is still LOUD and CLEAR, at Natural Healing Publications.'
Science or Fiction [ Show Answers ]
- Question #1 Science Hypnotherapy improves quality of life for people with Irritable Bowel Syndrome
- Question #2 Fiction Astronomers have discovered a previously unknown third moon orbiting Mars.
- Question #3 Science Researchers trace origin of an 'altruism gene'