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Good Skeptical Resources

  • 14-01-2004 3:52pm
    Closed Accounts Posts: 605 ✭✭✭ williamgrogan

    Quackwatch ( ) sends out a newsletter that is informative & funny

    To subscribe, send a blank message to [email protected]

    It seems to show that in the USA these matters are taken far more seriously than here with reguar prosecutions, fines and even jail sentences being handed down.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 605 ✭✭✭ williamgrogan

    The Brights Forum

    I still think its a really silly name!

  • Moderators, Arts Moderators Posts: 3,522 Mod ✭✭✭✭ Myksyk

    I'd encourage people to subscribe to Michael Shermer's SKEPTIC mag which is top notch.

  • Closed Accounts Posts: 605 ✭✭✭ williamgrogan

    American Council on Science and Health

    They seem particularly interested in education to offset the anti-science brigade.

  • Closed Accounts Posts: 857 ✭✭✭ davros

    Spiked for the sceptical point of view on current issues that most newspapers lack.

  • Closed Accounts Posts: 31 Egalitarian

    May I recommend the following UK website.

    There is some excellent material on anti-scientific prejudice and its impact on public policy and scientific research. The 'panic' section is well worth reading. There have also been some excellent debates.

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  • Closed Accounts Posts: 857 ✭✭✭ davros

    In case it isn't clear...

    This thread is intended for resources that are useful on an ongoing basis. That's why it's a 'sticky', i.e. it's always up near the top so people can find it.

    Once-off events/articles/etc. could be added to the 'Media' thread or could even warrant their own thread.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 31 Egalitarian

    The Debating Matters series, published by Hodder and Stoughton, reflects our commitment to opening up discussions on issues which are often talked about in the public realm, but rarely interrogated outside of academia, government committee or specialist milieu. Each of the 12 books comprises a set of essays written by a range of contributors.

    The aim is to avoid approaching questions in too black and white a way. Instead, in each book essayists give voice to the various sides of the debate on contentious contemporary issues, in a readable style. Sometimes approaches overlap, but from different perspectives, and some contributors do not take a 'for or against' stance, but simply present the evidence dispassionately.

    Debating Matters

    Whose right?

    Currently around 180 000 British women terminate pregnancies each year - far more than the politicians who passed the Abortion Act in 1967 intended. Should the law be made more liberal to reflect the demand or is it too easy for women to ‘take the life’ of their ‘unborn child’? What role should doctors play in the abortion decision?

    Alternative Medicine
    Should we swallow it?

    Complementary and Alternative Medicine (CAM) is an increasingly acceptable part of the repertory of healthcare professionals and is becoming more and more popular with the public. It seems that CAM has come of age-but should we swallow it?

    Ethical Tourism
    Who benefits?

    The idea of 'responsible tourism' has grown in popularity over the past decade. But who benefits from this notion? Should the behaviour of travellers come under scrutiny? What are the consequences of this new etiquette for the travelling experience? Can we make a positive difference if we change the way we travel?

    can we trust the experts?

    Controversies surrounding a plethora of issues, from the MMR vaccine to mobile phones, from BSE to genetically-modified foods, have led many to ask how the public's faith in government advice can be restored. At the heart of the matter is the role of expert and the question of whose opinion to trust.

    Teenage Sex
    What should schools teach children?

    Under New Labour, sex education is a big priority. New policies in this area are guaranteed to generate a furious debate. 'Pro-family' groups contend that young people are not given a clear message about right and wrong. Others argue there is still too little sex education. And some worry that all too often sex education stigmatizes sex. So what should schools teach children about sex?

    Animal Experimentation
    Good or Bad?

    Some argue that animal experiments are vital to advance scientific knowledge and improve medical practice. Others believe that they are unnecessary, cruel and repetitive. Is a compromise between animal rights campaigners and those that emphasise the needs of humans possible or even desirable?

    More info available from Debating Matters

  • Closed Accounts Posts: 31 Egalitarian

    Here are a few excellent websites for skeptical minds.

  • Closed Accounts Posts: 605 ✭✭✭ williamgrogan

    Dr Stephen Barrett is looking for small donations ($1 to $50) to support Quackwatch. If you feel generous click here. You can use Amazon or PayPal. You get a receipt.

  • Moderators, Arts Moderators Posts: 3,522 Mod ✭✭✭✭ Myksyk

    Massimo Pigliucci's sites are worth a look. Here's one:

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  • Closed Accounts Posts: 605 ✭✭✭ williamgrogan

    The Irish Central Statistics Office

    I have looked before and wasn't impressed but it has been dramatically improved and has VERY interesting stats on Religion from the last census which was released last week. The data is broken down far more than I thought it would be.


    and for an interesting list of religions & non religions By occupation see

    this is an interactive table and see what you get sorting non religion By occupation ..... the link won't work so search for it.

    You can download the raw data to your own spreadsheet (from the Interactive Table View page under Actions). What is interesting here is it indicates what would be possible re the eVoting data.

    I did a little % analysis - Computer Software workers are the 2nd most "No Religion" category in terms of % - 13.23% only Other Professional Workers are higher at 15.34% Scientific is 4th at 7.86 non religious. Funny is that 0.36% of Religious workers are not religious. :) Farmers are the most religious followed by cops.

  • Registered Users Posts: 2,023 ✭✭✭ sliabh

    Not a scientific site as such but good for getting to the truth about about loads of popular stories is:

    the Urban Legends debunkers.

  • Closed Accounts Posts: 76 ✭✭ sextusempiricus

    Butterflies and Wheels is, according to their advert in issue 29 of 'The Philosopher's Magazine'

    "an internet resource devoted to taking a close look at the many ways there are of Getting it Wrong, such as silly social constructivism, postmodernism pushed past its limits, pseudoscience, and plain old misunderstanding."

    I checked it out and I'd encourage other skeptics to do likewise. It can be serious and fun too. In its News section I discovered today that Anthony Flew, the 81 year old philosopher, had decided to drop the atheism he had espoused since the age of 15 for deism having been convinced that there may be something in the arguments of those who support 'intelligent design'.If you explore the site there is an excellent review of the book 'Why Intelligent Design Fails'. Perhaps Flew hasn't got around to reading it yet.

  • Closed Accounts Posts: 29 torinoblue

    I'm surprised James Randi's site is not listed here.

    Produces a nice little news page every Friday, with interesting stories.

  • Registered Users Posts: 8,754 ✭✭✭ Tim Robbins

    Here's a good video from Bruce Hood talking about magical beliefs.

  • Closed Accounts Posts: 112 ✭✭ skeptic griggsy atheisim/agnosticism Cline shows the merits of atheism and the demerits of theism.:cool:

  • Closed Accounts Posts: 9 PCTHUG

    This is the podcast that made me aware that I am a skeptic (not just an ass;) ) + James Randi is on it too most weeks:)

    Im a little surprised it hasnt been up already!

  • Registered Users Posts: 520 ✭✭✭ ???

    Skeptics guide is great.

    Podcasts through iTunes:

    Bad Astronomy
    The Amazing Show starring James Randi (mainly entertainment but a few sceptical ones).

    Also, the Ricky Gervais Podcast has quite a bit of sceptical discussion - at the espense of Carl Pilkington. Well worth a look.

    And just so you can practice spotting logical fallacies.. Skeptico! Rarely is so much rubbish so funny and easilly accesible!

  • Registered Users Posts: 19 Rorie

    Whats The Harm? is a great site to show people the damage caused by irrational beliefs.

  • Closed Accounts Posts: 220 ✭✭ EKClarke

    Thread title should be Good Reskeptical Resources.

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  • Registered Users Posts: 7,041 ✭✭✭ Seachmall