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Junk Science

Like conspiracy theories, junk science is also wide spread. Let’s put an end to it.

The MISkeptics Get Together: Will we be the Borg?

Author Jonathan Stars

Jonathan Stars is a writer, database consultant, musician, comedian, and songwriter. He has written over 100 articles on computers, music, and software. His latest novel is the techno-thriller “N-hanced.”

This month we are talking about the future of technology. Our featured speaker will be Jonathan Stars.

In this talk Jonathan will tell us about the promise and peril of our coming relationship with computers.  According to inventor and futurist, Ray Kurzweil (among others), in the next few years our lives will be dramatically changed by advances in robotics, genetics and nanotechnology.  Kurzweil predicts a technological singularity that will arrive around 2045, where people will need to have their intellects mechanically enhanced in order to keep up with the accelerating changes.

You may be surprised to find the future is closer than you think.

Jonathan Stars is a writer, database consultant, musician, comedian, and songwriter. He has written over 100 articles on computers, music, and software.  His latest novel is the techno-thriller “N-hanced.” (Learn more at www.N-hanced.com).

Come and join us for lively discussion, drinks, dinner and debate! This is a good event for Skeptics of Michigan to come together and discuss local, national, worldwide items affecting skeptics. All are welcome to listen and participate.

We are meeting at 4:00 PM on Saturday, June 14th in Plymouth, Michigan. Details are in the RSVP Links.

You can RSVP via our Meetup Page, Our Facebook Page, or our Google Plus Page.

Please be sure to RSVP so I know how many are coming.

MISkeptics is accepting donations! You can contribute to our future endeavors by following this link, or in person at any Get Together. You can donate with your credit card or drop money into the donation jar.

I look forward to seeing you there!

Skeptics in the Pub: Conclave!

This artwork by Jael has been the official logo of ConClave since 1996.

This artwork by Jael has been the official logo of ConClave since 1996.

We are moving our normal second Saturday Get Together back in a week to host a special event. This Saturday come join us for a special Skeptics in the Pub at ConClave!

Last month, we were contacted by the ConClave Science Fiction and Fantasy Convention to host discussion panels about skepticism. After a lot of work and back and forth with the Organizer, it has finally come time to host our panels! This Saturday, October 12th at 3:00 and 4:00 PM Michigan Skeptics will host two panels.

The first is “DON’T PANIC!”

There is a great deal of alarming and some down-right scary stories in the media these day. Many of them directly conflicting with each other. How can we sort through the pseudo-science, the snake oil and the media myths? This panel will give you some suggestions so you can figure out for yourself what is really worth its weight.

During this panel we will be teaching the audience about sensationalism, scams, snake-oil, media hype and scare tactics and most of all, arming them with the tools they need to figure out for themselves what is real and what is not.

The second panel is “The Skeptics Movement.”

The Skeptics are a group that entreats us to use critical thinking and evidence when dealing with every day life. They use these tools when dealing with Conspiracy Theories like the supposed faking of the moon landing or with the likelihood of psychics and mind-readers. What are their positions, and how does one join?

Here is where we get to shine and talk about us. Our goal is to well, talk about the skeptics movement. Who we are, what we do, and what makes us so great. And why we think more people need to be skeptics.

I know, it’s an uphill battle, right? It’s tough for people to change their way of life. It’s even harder to convince someone to do it. I think the important thing is to talk to people and tell them there is something they can do about the world around them. This is the way to do it.

If you have never been to a SciFi/Fantasy Convention before then you are definitely missing out. You will find a bit of everything there. From cosplay to  Con-Suites. There are all kinds of people there and all kinds of Woo. Which makes it a great place to talk skepticism.

Lyle of our sister group Yooper Skeptics. (he even looks like a yooper, doesn't he?)

Lyle of our sister group Yooper Skeptics. (he even looks like a yooper, doesn’t he?)

We would love for you to come and join us during the panels and help support skepticism in the community. A Saturday only day pass will run you $35, while a full three-day pass will cost $50. If you can make it we would love to see you there. If you can’t, we are hosting an event that evening where you don’t have to pay an admission fee.

We are hosting one last event for the Convention. We’re having a Skeptics in the Pub in the hotel bar at 7:00 PM! This event is open to the public so come on out and support skepticism! We will even have a special guest. Nathan Lyle of our sister group Yooper Skeptics, (and his son, mini-guest Ray) from all the way up in Marquette, Michigan will be in town and joining us for drinks and fun conversations.

Tickets for ConClave, both the Saturday only ticket and the full three-day pass are available at the door. Remember you don’t need to purchase a ticket for Skeptics in the Pub. You only need to pay for your food and drinks.

You can register for Skeptics in the Pub: Conclave at our Meetup site or on our Facebook page.

I look forward to seeing you all there!

Today at 3PM: Peter Sinclair will be a guest on The Magic Sandwich Show

http://www.magicsandwichshow.com/

Peter Sinclair, one of our recent Get Together guests and blogger on Climate Denial Crock of the Week will be a guest on The Magic Sandwich Show.

Peter Sinclair \

Peter Sinclair

The Magic Sandwich Show is a bi-weekly live call in show, broadcast every other Sunday on BlogTV and uStream. During the show a panel of 3 or 4 discuss topical issues relating to religion and science.

You can access the show on BlogTV and uStream.

After the show check out his blog for the latest information on his Dark Show Project.

Don’t forget to subscribe to his YouTube channel and follow him on Twitter!

Our March Get Together: MUFON

Michigan MUFON Logo

This month we are pleased to welcome William Konkolesky, the State Director for MUFON, The Mutual UFO Network. He’s going to talk to us about aliens and UFOs.

Because of the large field of of the topic we need to limit today to just UFOs. If there’s time afterwards, we can entertain other questions. We will ask Mr. Konkolesky back to discuss other topics such like abductions, crop circles, and that guy on the History Channel with the crazy hair.

Come and join us for lively discussion, drinks, dinner and debate! This is a good event for Skeptics of Michigan to come together and discuss local, national, worldwide items affecting skeptics. All are welcome to listen and participate.

Please be sure to RSVP so I know how many are coming. That way I can modify the reservation if necessary. We’re expecting a large crowd for this so be sure to RSVP early. You can RSVP at our Meetup site, our Facebook Event Page, or our Google Plus Event Page.

I look forward to seeing you there!

The First Get Together of 2013!

It’s been two months since we last got together. Unfortunately we had to cancel our December events, including out End of the World Party. But don’t worry, another one is coming up. Another one always is.

So for our January Get Together we have a special guest who is returning to talk to us again.

Photo of Peter Sinclair

Peter Sinclair runs ClimateCrocks.com and is a popular speaker on the environment.

This month we welcome back Peter Sinclair of Climatecrocks.com to update us on the science and politics of climate change/denial. He was last with us two years ago and there’s a lot to be updated about.

Peter Sinclair is a long time advocate of environmental awareness and energy alternatives. An award-winning graphic artist, illustrator, and animator, Mr. Sinclair runs Greenman Studio from his home in Midland, MI.

Come and join us for lively discussion, drinks, dinner and debate! This is a good event for Skeptics of Michigan to come together and discuss local, national, worldwide items affecting skeptics. All are welcome to listen and participate.

We also have special guests and speakers that contribute to the conversation and/or debate.

Please be sure to RSVP so I know how many are coming. That way I can modify the reservation if necessary. You can RSVP at out Meetup Site, our Facebook Page, or our Google Plus Page.

I hope to see you all there!

Alpena, Michigan Was Apparently The Start of The American Rebellion

This symbol I pulled from the Whatdoesitmean.com site. I have no idea what it means.

I came across this simply amazing piece of woo-filled-tripe (tripe-filled-woo?) today. It’s from a website I’ve never heard of  before called the European Union Times. They had posted an article that I’m still having a hard time figuring out whether it’s satire. The headline reads: “380 American Rebels Reported Killed In Michigan Battle.” This article is a complete “cut and paste” from a site called Whatdoesitmean.com. Which is a home of genuine nutballery.

A shocking Federal Security Service (FSB) report circulating in the Kremlin today states that last week an “intense” battle erupted in the US State of Michigan between military forces loyal to the Obama regime and American rebels that killed at least 380 men, women and children who had gathered to oppose their nations slide towards a totalitarian dictatorship.

Just to verify this claim, I went to the FSB website. It is completely in Russian but with help of Google Translate I browsed and searched the site. There are no press releases or anything that turned up in a key word search containing “Michigan”, “Alpena” or “Obama”. If you can read Russian please check out the site and let me know if there actually is something about this on the site.

The article goes on to give a very detailed account of an attack that killed 380 civilians including bombing runs with 2000 lb laser guided bombs. I don’t know if you have seen what the impact of a 2000 lb bomb looks like, but it looks like this:

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Paleontologists Re-debunk Aquatic Dinosaur Theory Shot Down Decades Ago

Dinosaurs courtesy of Wikimedia

A collection of skeletons mounted in museums of various dinosaurs. source: Wikimedia

Last week, Paleontologists were required to respond to claims that dinosaurs were actually semi-aquatic creatures and stayed in water to support their great size. A theory that was thoroughly and completely debunked in the 1960s. The Smithsonian Magazine reports:

Earlier this week, the rotting corpse of a discarded dinosaur idea rose from the depths. Brian J. Ford, a television personality and self-styled independent researcher, decided that Apatosaurus, Allosaurus and kin just looked wrong ambling about on land. Unfettered by the accumulation of scientific evidence about how dinosaurs moved and the environments they lived in, Ford decided to set scientists straight by floating an idea that had been sunk decades ago—that all large dinosaurs spent their lives in water. And, like the bad science it is, the idea strained to explain everything about dinosaur biology. Not only did the idea supposedly explain why non-avian dinosaurs went extinct—their watery homes dried up, of course—but the aquatic setting also explained the small arms of the tyrannosaurs. The great tyrants, Ford said, would catch fish and hold them close for visual inspection before downing the sashimi. Ford’s speculation is a buffet of nonsense. There is so much wrong with it, it’s hard to know where to start.

Brian J. Ford is a British Journalist and television personality. He doesn’t have a college degree but has been an advocate for science and education since he dropped out of college in 1961. His article, published in the April edition of Labratory News, (apparently with a video trailer) purports to not only provide evidence for, but actually concludes that dinosaurs were aquatic.

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Are Computers Better Than People At Detecting When People Lie?

Lie to Me Logo

Lie to Me on FOX

Can computer software detect lies at a better rate than people? Scientific American reports that researchers at the University at Buffalo, The State University of New York claim that their software, which analyzes eye movement can determine a lie with 82.5% accuracy. Their work, which is as of yet unpublished, consisted of 40 interviews with subjects that were given a punishment/reward scenario. If they were to successfully lie and get away with it, they would be given a cash reward plus a group they support will be given a donation. If they were caught lying, a group they oppose were given money.

Obviously, a 40 subject study is hardly a thorough  study but they have bigger plans for their research.

The researchers, who first presented their (still unpublished) results at the 2011 IEEE International Conference on Automatic Face and Gesture Recognition a year ago, believe they have laid the foundation for a more extensive study that will include a larger sample and take into account body language in addition to eye movement to determine whether new technologies can help interrogators in their search for the truth.

The study is based off of work of Paul Ekman, a Professor Emeritus psychology at the University of California, San Francisco, School of Medicine. Ekman studied emotions and their relation to facial expressions. The study’s co-author, Mark Frank, worked for Ekman U.C. San Francisco’s psychiatry department previously.

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The Latest Conspiracy Theory: Whitney Houston’s Death Was an Occult Sacrifice

Whitney Houston

Whitney Houston

This new conspiracy theory is a very good example of just how detached it’s believers can be. The author goes through a long and convoluted story on how the music industry is, in fact, a secret society of  Illuminati and Satan worshipers. The music industry’s goal is simple. They lure innocent people with talent to Hollywood, convince them to sign a contract, then drain their life force until such a time that they are no longer useful. They then sacrifice then to their demon overlords.  Makes perfect sense, right?

Everything that takes place in public is first planned in private through secret societies. This is the way the world has always worked and the music industry is no exception to this. Before a entertainer is given a recording contract they must first be a member of a secret society. A so called X member of the Illuminati, who was a music executive in the 70’s spoke about this publicly, his name was John Todd. According to Todd, every musician and entertainer in the music industry and Hollywood, has to be a initiated wizard or witch before they are offered a recording contract. This is what some writers have called the selling of the soul or light to Lucifer. In his speeches John Todd further demonstrates that after the record is cut and the master is finished, it is then given to a coven of witches and wizards who conjure up a demon. Once the demon is conjured the witches and wizards ask the entity to attach itself to every copy or duplicate that is sold to the public, which guarantees the success of the record and also takes control of the listener. If you want to research Todd’s work in full I have all of his recorded material on MP3 and would be glad to send it to you. (Email me at [Email Removed])

The point I am making above is that the music industry is a cult and once one gets a record deal they are now an initiate and are a part of the cult for life. Whitney Houston was no exception to this rule and she took the oath back in the 70’s. Once the oath is pledged you become the property of the record labels and the machines and you can NEVER retire. The only way out of the game is death! If you think I’m lying, please email me with one entertainer who has successfully retired from the industry, never to come back again. There is no way out.

Bobby Brown was her “handler” and controlled her every move for the Music Industry/secret society/satanic cult. In this article, “handler” mean “mind-controller” for some reason…

You see, in the music industry nothing happens without the consent of the label and Whitney meeting and marrying Bobby Brown was no different. The life of an entertainer doesn’t stop when the cameras go off, the entertainment spills over into your personal life, because as I said above, when you sign the deal you are now the property of the labels. The labels allowed Whitney to Marry Bobby Brown and if one does any investigation they will see that her life began to go downhill shortly after. Now I’m not blaming Bobby for Whitney’s fall, because he took the oath and made a deal with the goat just like her, so I believe they used Bobby to make Whitney’s life more interesting and to begin to tarnish her image. Like I said the music industry is not for those who are pure at heart and Whitney was a pure soul indeed! The labels knew what kind of person Bobby was and they knew he would be a good pick for their goals with Whitney. So, the labels began to work rituals based on Bobby and Whitney’s relationship, remember everybody in the game aka the industry plays a part even when the cameras go off.

Whitney Houston stated in her interview with Oprah in 2010 that she was attracted to Bobby because he, “took control of her and their relationship, and she liked that.” In reality Bobby was acting as Whitney’s handler, which is a term used in mind control. A handler is one who is used within a mind control experiment to break another and to get them to do what the controllers of the experiment want, this was Bobby’s role. The labels wanted to spice up Whitney’s life aka destroy her pristine image, which they had been targeting since she got into the industry. You may wonder why they would want to do a thing like this, but if you’re not in the industry then you can’t imagine how diabolical the people are who run the show. These people thrive on drama, sex, violence, and drugs. As they say, sex sales! Entertainers are products of the elite and they are treated as such, they (The Elite) don’t give a shit about human values morals and the likes. The people that are behind the scenes are master witches and wizards and their goals are constant control and power.

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The Drunken Skeptics Episode 11: Expat

Beer mug with the MISkeptics logo

Frost your mugs, it's time for another episode!

The latest Drunken Skeptics is out! Episode 11 is fresh and ready for your aggregators to consume!

In this episode we talk about TEDxDetroit, What Chris and Michelle have been doing with their time and as always we have Whiskey and Shenanigans!

Don’t forget to like us on Facebook and join our Meetup group!

You can find our show notes here.

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