“Haunted” Country Store

Investigative Briefs with Joe Nickell
June 14, 2013

In a little store in the village of Clarence, New York, items tumble from shelves, pictures fall from walls, and the front door mysteriously opens, while from upstairs come the sounds of eerie footsteps and moving furniture. Previously a candle shop, its employees reportedly believed ghosts were to blame.

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The Littlest Freethinker

The Morning Heresy with Paul the Morning Heretic
June 13, 2013

The Morning Heresy is your daily digest of news and links relevant to the secular and skeptic communities.  

Paul is off testing his skepticism by driving into a Derecho. He'll return on the 20th. Until then, the Guest Heretics are Ed Beck and Lauren Becker. Now, on to the news!

Think of the children! A lot of today's news relates to young people in some highly encouraging and also disturbing ways.

In Philadelphia, a faith-healing couple accused of murder must stand trial for the death of their infant son. 

Relatedly, what should we do with parents who deny vaccines to their children? What if they're a Kennedy?

A Florida school district is trying to protect their children - from The Truth. Bible? Yes. Ingersoll? No. Harris, Warraq, Hitchens, Dawkins, O'Hare? No. This is going to be fun. 

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Announcing “The Science of Miracles”

Investigative Briefs with Joe Nickell
June 12, 2013

In case you haven’t heard, my new book—The Science of Miracles: Investigating the Incredible (Prometheus 2013—is out. The BBC’s magazine Focus has already honored it as its science-book-of-the-month for June. Here is what some distinguished people have said about it:

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It is Actually Hollow

The Morning Heresy with Paul the Morning Heretic
June 12, 2013

The Morning Heresy is your daily digest of news and links relevant to the secular and skeptic communities.  

I, your Official Morning Heretic™, will be going on vacation after today, and returning June 20th. During that time, the Heresy will be in the capable hands of Lauren Becker, our director of marketing, and Ed Beck, who, um, I don't know what his job is.* The similarity of their surnames is entirely coincidental. Please go easy on them. On to the news. 

NYT on the public slaying of teenager Muhammad al-Qatta in Syria after he allegedly said something flip about the prophet:

Muhammad’s killing . . . focused anger on hard-line Islamists, including foreigners, some of whom have seized on the conflict in Syria as an opportunity to impose their mores. For Muhammad’s mother and some her neighbors, the tyrannies were indistinguishable, trapping many Syrians in a vise. 

Texas Christian University gives the green light to a campus atheist group. 

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No, YOU Stick Needles in That Tiger.

The Morning Heresy with Paul the Morning Heretic
June 11, 2013

The Morning Heresy is your daily digest of news and links relevant to the secular and skeptic communities.  

Sam Harris warns of the dangers inherent in "ecstatic" religion, an understanding culled from his own experiences, and how Muslims' deep belief in the "truth" of their faith is widely underestimated: "The notion that no one believes in Paradise is far crazier than a belief in Paradise."

The administration is allowing Plan B to be available over the counter for women of any age. 

Want to be more inclusive of women with your evil, godless, War-on-Christmas group? CFI's Sarah Kaiser has some tips

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The Point of Inquiry Weekly Wrap-up: Stephan Lewandosky

by Point of Inquiry
June 10, 2013

A look back at last week's Point of Inquiry episode with Stephan Lewondosky.

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Jesus is Nuclear Glue

The Morning Heresy with Paul the Morning Heretic
June 10, 2013

The Morning Heresy is your daily digest of news and links relevant to the secular and skeptic communities.  

Shafiq at the Islamic Society at Leeds University Union says animosity towards Islam "will continue to be justified" until moderates deal with the fact that "we're over-represented in the crazy department."  

France bans a rally by a right-wing group that was to celebrate the victory of a Christian army in the year 721 over Muslims in Toulouse.

Ben Radford looks askance at one woman's experiment with living only on sunlight and water...

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Zimbabwean Underpants Gnomes

The Morning Heresy with Paul the Morning Heretic
June 07, 2013

The Morning Heresy is your daily digest of news and links relevant to the secular and skeptic communities.  

Well, this had to happen eventually, didn't it? My hero, Thomas Dolby, performs "She Blinded Me with Science" with a little help from Buzz-Freaking-Aldrin.

Carrie Poppy ventures into a building blueprinted by aliens ("The building is a huge boob. The nipple is open to the sunlight and fresh air.") to take a sleepy sound bath.  

Sally Quinn comes down hard on the Boy Scouts -- despite their new openness to gay youth -- for forcing atheists and gay scouts over 18 to "live a lie." 

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Creation Was an Inside Job

The Morning Heresy with Paul the Morning Heretic
June 06, 2013

The Morning Heresy is your daily digest of news and links relevant to the secular and skeptic communities.  

Jaweed Kaleem at HuffPo: The FBI will now formally be tracking hate crimes against a bevy of minority religious groups, including Sikhs, Hindus, and yes, atheists. 

Make way for the chairman of the board! No, not Frank, but CFI's chair Eddie Tabash giving his address on the future of atheism to Atheists United in April.

The ACLU tries to put the brakes on the merger of secular hospitals with Catholic ones

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Participating in a Brazilian Panel on Science Journalism and Skepticism

A Skeptic Reads the Newspaper with Benjamin Radford
June 05, 2013

Last July I was invited to São Paulo, Brazil, to speak on a panel about skepticism and the state of science journalism sponsored by Folha do Sao Paulo, the city's largest newspaper.

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