My Interview on Mind Cemetery

On 6/6/11 I was a guest on Mind Cemetery Radio with hosts Chip and Nicole Plescher.  Here is an overview Nicole wrote about the show.

“We had an AWESOME time with Bobby Nelson last time… well, I did!  Chip’s world got rocked up a little bit.  I ❤ Skeptic month!  In honor of skeptical month, pay homage to skeptical hippo  🙂  

Anyway, Bobby is what I would consider to be a good guy skeptic.  After last night’s discussion, I admire him almost as much as admire Penn after his skepticism letter.  It was a fun show.  Listen in below!

Bobby’s biggest complaint about the paranormal community is when people bastardize science into fitting their needs.  He co-hosts Strange Frequencies Radio, which airs on Sundays from 3-6PM EST.  He also has an awesome blog called Pork Rhine and he is the founder and contributor of Bent Spoon Magazine which is smart, insightful, and amazing.  Check out Bent Spoon if you have a minute… it really appeals to believers and non-believers alike.”

I must admit, this was one of my favorite shows I have ever been on.

To download this interview right click on the link and save as: www.para-help.com/sfrbobby/bobbymind.mp3

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Interview with Professor Mark Alford – Quantum Physics and the Paranormal

On Sunday 6/5/11 I was privileged to speak with Professor Mark Alford about quantum physics and the paranormal. If you’re like us, you’ve heard weird, spooky sounding connections between ghosts, psychic powers, and even consciousness itself all tied to the behavior of subatomic particles. Not only is the evidence for any of the perceived paranormal phenomenon lacking, but the supposed relation to quantum realities is irresponsible.  Mark Alford, professor of physics at Washington University at St. Louis whose main research topic is in high density quark matter. You can find out more information by checking out: http://www.physics.wustl.edu/~alford/

To download this interview, right click the link and save as: www.para-help.com/sfrbobby/sfr_show150_hour2.mp3

STRUCTURE FOUND ON MARS!!!!

BIO STATION ALPHA FOUND ON MARS!!!!  At least that is what amateur astronomer David Martines is saying.  What exactly is Bio Station Alpha?  Well it is something astounding that Martines found while scanning Google Mars.  Martines is claiming that this formation (which he himself named Bio Station Alpha) is at least 700ft long and 150ft wide and that it is definitely cylindrical, he is also making that claim that is positive evidence for extraterrestrials.  

Martines says “It could be a power station or it could be a biological containment or it could be a glorified garage — hope it’s not a weapon.”

Why is it when people see something like this, common sense goes bye-bye?  An obscure structure is seen and people appeal to extraterrestrials.  Here is a perfectly legit RATIONAL EXPLAINATION – It is a pixilated rock or mountain formation.

A Paranormal Debate with CPPI’s KD Foreman

Last Sunday on SFR Jason Korbus and I had a friendly debate on paranormal topics with CPPI’s KD Foreman.  KD and I have gone head to head before on PSI FI Radio, I guess you could call this part two.

To listen to this debate go to www.para-help.com/sfrbobby/sfr_show147_hour2.mp3

Right click on the link and save as.

The Bent Spoon – We’re Still Here – ISSUE 2!

ISSUE 2 OF THE BENT SPOON IS HERE….AGAIN IT’S THE PERFECT PRICE…FREE!!!

BS002

Oz Owned Novella? Hardly.

Today I stumbled on a blog called “Bolen Report” and the post I will be talking about was titled “Top Pseudo-Skeptic, Steve Novella, Humiliated on National TV… And it was fun to watch…”

http://www.bolenreport.com/feature_articles/Doctor’s-Data-v-Barrett/novellahumiliation.htm

After getting around all the ad hominem attacks Bolen made on Dr. Novella the only thing I see here is someone who can decipher facts from bullshit.

Bolen makes a claim that Dr. Novella wears a shitty toupee.  Alright, he obviously doesn’t have a toupee but even if Dr. Novella was wearing a crappy hair piece, what does that have to do with the LEGIT science Novella is promoting?  As if a toupee somehow corrupts an individual’s logic and the ability to use critical thinking.

Another awesome claim Bolen makes is this “Novella claims to be a neurology professor at Yale University, and throws the name “Yale” around like he was throwing seed to the morning chickens – but, to me, that is an outright fabrication.”  If real research was done or just a simple look through Yale University’s directory of staff, we can easily find Dr. Novella’s name, his position, where he works and so on.  That is what the real evidence shows us Bolen!

Another claim Bolen makes “In short, Novella is just another justifiably self-disappointed crap-career loser…”  Far from it, Dr. Novella is a very highly respected individual in the science and medicine fields.  His knowledge in the things he speaks about, for instance, alternative medicine and homeopathy and how they show no real SCIENTIFIC EVIDENCE that they work has made him a well respected individual in the skeptical community as well, not to mention his ability to use logic and think critically.

Another amazing statement in the post by Bolen, “What am I looking for?  Knowing what I know about Randi’s sexual proclivities, that Randi/Novella video, and Novella’s obvious relationship with James Randi, has raised red flags with me about the ENTIRE pseudo-skeptic movement.”  I would have to say that this may be one of the boldest statements Bolen could make.  Please tell me you are not saying that because James Randi is a homosexual, that somehow suggests that Randi and Novella have some type of relationship more than friends. 

“All over the internet they are calling Oz names,” isn’t that what you did in your whole entire article?  You attacked everyone in the skeptical movement and called people out by name.  Providing people with fake information and using your own biases to come up with your conclusions.  Your article is filled with bigotry, poor journalism and hypocrisy.

“Each of the pseudo-skepics, I estimate, has between fifteen and thirty different made-up internet identities.”  How are you coming up with this information, or is it more “guessing”? 

“No one with any real credentials wants to be associated with them in any way.”  Again this is just a blatant lie.  Do you even realize the trouble a doctor could get into if they only offered alternative medicine as a way to treat patients?  It is called malpractice, it’s illegal, a doctor could be sued and lose his license to practice medicine.

IMO this guy seems upset because Novella made amazing points when he was featured on the Dr. Oz show.  When people have to resort to name calling, it is usually a result of feeling threatened.  What really happened on the Oz show was this.

Right off the bat Dr. Oz makes an interesting claim “We are putting our reputations on the line, because we are using alternative therapies in our traditional practices.  Many doctors claim that this is nothing more than junk science and could even be dangerous, your doctor may be one of them.”

To me this sounds like Dr. Oz knows that he is doing nothing more than buying into the hype, another niche to make more money, nothing more.

Dr. Novella gives a brilliant explanation of what the general consensus among doctors is on the subject of alternative medicine.  “It’s an artificial category that doesn’t really mean anything and it exists to provide a double standard.  What we think is there should be one science-based, common sense standard to figure out what therapies work and are safe, and not these artificial categories that are used really to market things, in our opinion, that essentially don’t work.”

Dr. Oz asks Dr. Guarneri, a cardiologist to comment in which she tries to make the claim that doctors “And certainly, I don’t think today we can call nutrition “alternative medicine” or call exercise “alternative medicine”–other things that I teach my patients every day to prevent heart disease.”

Novella responds beautifully “Well, I agree that nutrition and exercise are not alternative. They’ve been part of science-based medicine for decades. They’ve just been rebranded as alternative to create this legitimacy for this whole umbrella that now also includes a lot of things that don’t work or not based upon science or evidence. There’s lots of things that we do to prevent heart disease. We recommend dietary changes, regular exercise, weight control, using medication like aspirin or other blood thinners when necessary. Preventive medicine is science- based medicine. It’s not alternative.”

After a very small dialogue between the 3 doctors, Dr. Oz says “Is that close to on-target, folks? Right? So, if I can give you my take: alternative medicine, I think, is at the grassroots level. And because of that, nobody owns it. Now, that stated I think we got our homework to do. But I think alternative medicine empowers us, and that’s the big message for all of ya, but only if you know more about it, and it if does work for ya, trust me, do not let anybody take it away from you. Dr. Novella, thank you very much.”

Novella hardly looked like a fool, IMO I feel like Dr. Novella made some brilliant points and instead of Oz counter arguing them, he makes a quick statement and ushers Novella off the stage.  I felt it was actually very unfair of Dr. Oz not to let Dr. Novella comment on that last statement, but hey Oz is promoting Woo on HIS show, so he has to get the last word in.

The Bent Spoon!!!

The Bent Spoon

The Bent Spoon

So last Friday the first issue of The Bent Spoon was released.  I have received a lot of positive feedback and comments (which I love).  If anyone would like to subscribe to receive a free copy every month in their inbox, just send an email to thebentspoon@live.com and in the subject line type “subscribe” and you will be added to the list. 

The Bent Spoon is a skeptical magazine for the true believer.  Within its pages you will find Q&A between those with opposing viewpoints, interviews with leading investigators and thinkers, as well as articles which will not only provide in-depth analysis, but also be critical of both believers and skeptics alike.  Along with reviews, comic strips, and other lighter fare, The Bent Spoon hopes to foster an attitude of outreach, forming a middle ground where believers and skeptics can come together and have a conversation about the issues and questions we’ve all given thought to.

Please tell your friends and leave feedback, we would love to hear from you!  

If you havent subscribed and would like to read issue 01, just click this link Bentspoon issue001

Coming Soon…The Bent Spoon

In the landscape of paranormal media, there are traditionally two unique, yet separate, brands.  One geared toward the believers, and the other more skeptical in nature.  The problem is that the true believers rarely, if ever, embrace a skeptical attitude or ask tough questions of their community; instead preferring to surround themselves with likeminded individuals that reinforce their own belief systems.  And the skeptics, likewise, promote science and critical thinking largely to those already open to it, or who are active participants in the skeptical community.  This results in an echo chamber effect, wherein the same ideas are bounced back and forth, guru-student relationships are inadvertently created, and neither side ends up learning much about the other.

Enter:  The Bent Spoon.

The Bent Spoon is a skeptical magazine for the true believer.  Within its pages you will find Q&A between those with opposing viewpoints, interviews with leading investigators and thinkers, as well as articles which will not only provide in-depth analysis, but also be critical of both believers and skeptics alike.  Along with reviews, comic strips, and other lighter fare, The Bent Spoon hopes to foster an attitude of outreach, forming a middle ground where believers and skeptics can come together and have a conversation about the issues and questions we’ve all given thought to.

The Bent Spoon.  Where extraordinary claims meet ordinary explanations.

This is the Skeptical magazine for the True Believers! 

If you are interested in subscribing to this free online magazine, just send an email to thebentspoon@live.com with the word “subscribe” in the subject line.  Thank you.

***UPDATE***

You can download a copy of The Bent Spoon for free

A Psychic Challenge to Eric “The Yeti” Risinger

Today I was sad to see a person an old acquaintance officially joining the woo circuit.  Eric “The Yeti” Risinger, host of PEMA TV an internet television show, claims to have become a psychic after participating in a sensory deprivation experiment (the Ganzfeld test).  On his personal psychic profile, he does seem a little bit aware that the skills he claims to have obtained may not be fully developed, however he felt they were developed enough to charge $2.26 per minute.  You can read the rest for yourself by going to www.keen.com/Eric%20the%20Yeti.

My Challenge to Eric:

Eric, the reason I am writing this article is not to offend you.  You claim to be a psychic and you are advertising your ability.  You feel it is strong enough to be charging money, so I publically am challenging you to show your ability.

This is what I want from you if you decide to accept my challenge:

  1. A public or private reading, where I am told specifics and not asked questions such as: “does this make sense,” or “tell me about the older woman that has passed away.”  I don’t want vague information that can be applied to the masses; I want specific information that only relates to me.     
  2. Since Eric claims that we all possess the ability to achieve psychic powers, which means he has to be able to identify the mechanism that allows this.  I want to know what this mechanism is, it can’t be an unknown, unquantifiable or unidentifiable otherwise you cannot say this is something everyone possesses.
  3. If this is something that everyone does indeed possess, what moral right do you have to charge for it?

I mean none of this in a disrespectful manner, just that you do what you say you can do, and answer the questions dealing with the knowledge you claim to possess.  Thanks.

Calling Joe Nickell, Calling Joe Nickell – Film Claims to Have Found 2 Nails Used to Crucify Jesus.

I smell crap!  The article below is suggesting that the nails that were used to crucify Jesus Christ were found.  This isn’t anything new, Christian relics have been collected and presented as authentic for the last 2,000 years.  Everything from the crown of thorns, the chalice used in the last supper, pieces from the cross, the shroud of Turin and the nails from the cross, have been found numerous times.  One of my favorite quotes says “It has often been said that if all the relics of the True Cross were brought together, there would be enough wood to build Noah’s Ark.”   

 I would love to see Joe Nickell tackle this project.

 Article By Ari Rabinovitch, Reuters

JERUSALEM – Could two of the nails used to crucify Jesus have been discovered in a 2,000-year-old tomb in Jerusalem?

And could they have mysteriously disappeared for 20 years, only to turn up by chance in a Tel Aviv laboratory?

That is the premise of the new documentary film “The Nails of the Cross” by veteran investigator Simcha Jacobovici, which even before its release has prompted debate in the Holy Land.

The film follows three years of research during which Jacobovici presents his assertions — some based on empirical data, others requiring much imagination and a leap of faith.

He hails the find as historic, but most experts and scholars contacted by Reuters dismissed his case as far-fetched, some calling it a publicity stunt.

Many ancient relics, including other nails supposedly traced back to the crucifixion, have been presented over the centuries as having a connection to Jesus. Many were deemed phony, while others were embraced as holy.

Jacobovici, who sparked debate with a previous film that claimed to reveal the lost tomb of Jesus, says this find differs from others because of its historical and archaeological context.

“What we are bringing to the world is the best archaeological argument ever made that two of the nails from the crucifixion of Jesus have been found,” he said in an interview, wearing his trademark traditional knitted cap.

“Do I know 100 percent yes, these are them? I don’t.”

CONSPIRACY, SLIP-UP OR BASELESS?

The film begins by revisiting an ancient Jerusalem grave discovered in 1990 which was hailed by many at the time as the burial place of the Jewish high priest Caiaphas, who in the New Testament presides over the trial of Jesus.

The grave, along with a number of ossuaries, or bone boxes, was uncovered during construction work on a hillside a few kilometers south of the Old City. It has since been resealed.

Caiaphas is a major figure in the Gospels, having sent Jesus to the Romans and on to his death, and one of Jacobovici’s assertions is that the high priest was not such a bad guy.

Two iron nails were found in the tomb, one on the ground and one actually inside an ossuary, and, according to the film, mysteriously disappeared shortly after. Jacobovici says he tracked them down to a laboratory in Tel Aviv of an anthropologist who is an expert on ancient bones.

And if they are indeed the same nails — eaten away by rust and bent at the end, almost purposefully — was their disappearance a conspiracy or a logistical slip-up?

No definite answer is offered.

Either way, Jacobovici shows why those nails could have been used in a crucifixion, which was a common practice two thousand years ago. He then offers his theory about why they may have been used in the most famous crucifixion in history.

“If you look at the whole story, historical, textual, archaeological, they all seem to point at these two nails being involved in a crucifixion,” he said. “And since Caiaphas is only associated with Jesus’s crucifixion, you put two and two together and they seem to imply that these are the nails.”

The Israel Antiquities Authority, which oversaw the Jerusalem excavation, said in reaction to the film’s release that it had never been proven beyond doubt that the tomb was the burial place of Caiaphas. It also said that nails are commonly found in tombs.

“There is no doubt that the talented director Simcha Jacobovici created an interesting film with a real archaeological find at its center, but the interpretation presented in it has no basis in archaeological findings or research,” it said.