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Skeptical Inquirer — Volume 36.6

Volume 36.6

November/December 2012

Phrenology and the Grand Delusion of Experience

Phrenology and the Grand Delusion of Experience

by Geoffrey Dean
Volume 36.6, November/December 2012

Article

In the nineteenth century, phrenology was hugely influential despite being totally invalid. Its history shows why we must be skeptical of any belief based solely on experience.

Homeopathy: A Critique of Current Clinical Research

Homeopathy: A Critique of Current Clinical Research

by Edzard Ernst
Volume 36.6, November/December 2012

Article

An evaluation of the clinical research by the group that has published most of the papers in homeopathy, 2005–2010, finds numerous flaws in the design, conduct, and reporting along with a tendency to overinterpret weak data.

The Pseudoscience of Live Blood Cell Analysis

The Pseudoscience of Live Blood Cell Analysis

by Thomas Patterson
Volume 36.6, November/December 2012

Article

Of the many aspects of alternative medicine, one of the most bizarre is live blood cell analysis. This unapproved blood test supposedly identifies nutritional deficiencies and other nebulous conditions.

Faith Healing and Skepticism in Pakistan: Challenges and Instability

Faith Healing and Skepticism in Pakistan: Challenges and Instability

by Ryan Shaffer
Volume 36.6, November/December 2012

Article

With the rise of Islamic extremism in Pakistan, the country not only has to protect people from fraudulent healers but also has the challenge of protecting these fraudsters from violence.

Greek Government Takes Action against Maker of Nanobionic Clothing

Greek Government Takes Action against Maker of Nanobionic Clothing

by Simon Davis
Volume 36.6, November/December 2012

News & Comment

Following an investigation published by journalists Kostas Vaxevanis and Stefanos Gogos, the General Consumer Secretariat (GCS), a Greek government agency, ordered the immediate removal of key health and product claims by Viotech Ltd., makers of the Nanobionic clothing line.

States of Mind: Some Perceived ET Encounters

States of Mind: Some Perceived ET Encounters

by Joe Nickell
Volume 36.6, November/December 2012

Investigative Files

Together, as we shall see, these cases illustrate that UFOlogy continues its long tradition of mystery mongering and the implicit reliance on a logical fallacy called “arguing from ignorance”: “We don’t know what was seen in the sky; therefore, it must have been an extraterrestrial craft.”

Curse That Painting!

Curse That Painting!

by Massimo Polidoro
Volume 36.6, November/December 2012

Notes on a Strange World

Paranormal legends about paintings have always existed. Some think that a picture falling off the wall represents a bad omen for the person depicted or photographed in it. Others feel watched by some portraits whose eyes seem to follow onlookers as they move through a room. And still others claim that paintings can come alive...

How to Get Something from Nothing

How to Get Something from Nothing

by Mark Alford
Volume 36.6, November/December 2012

Book Review

A review of A Universe from Nothing by Lawrence M. Krauss.

A Book of Stories that Happened to a Friend ...

A Book of Stories that Happened to a Friend ...

by Ben Radford
Volume 36.6, November/December 2012

Book Review

A review of Encyclopedia of Urban Legends: Updated and Expanded Edition by Jan Harold Brunvand.

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A Golden Age of Harmony? Misrepresenting Science and History in the 1001 Inventions Exhibit

by Taner Edis and Sonja Brentjes
Volume 36.6, November/December 2012

Article

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The Higgs Boson and the Future of Physics

by Marvin M. Mueller
Volume 36.6, November/December 2012

Commentary

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Phrenology’s Lessons for Today

by Kendrick Frazier
Volume 36.6, November/December 2012

From the Editor

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Singularity As Pseudoscience

by Massimo Pigliucci
Volume 36.6, November/December 2012

Thinking About Science

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National Geographic’s Chasing UFOs—‘Investigation as Farce’

by Robert Sheaffer
Volume 36.6, November/December 2012

Psychic Vibrations

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Exorcising Exercise

by Kenneth W. Krause
Volume 36.6, November/December 2012

Science Watch

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Mystery Solved—According to Whom?

by Ben Radford
Volume 36.6, November/December 2012

Skeptical Inquiree

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Not So Smart Thinking

by Daniel Grassam
Volume 36.6, November/December 2012

Book Review

A review of You Are Not So Smart: Why You Have Too Many Friends on Facebook, Why Your Memory Is Mostly Fiction, and 46 Other Ways You’re Deluding Yourself by David McRaney.

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Four Realms of Inquiry

by Richard Bond
Volume 36.6, November/December 2012

Book Review

A review of Handling Truth by William Gardner.

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Aztec Saucer Crash Story Rises from the Dead?

by Robert Sheaffer
Volume 36.6, November/December 2012

Book Review

A review of The Aztec Incident by Scott Ramsey, Suzanne Ramsey, Frank Thayer, and Frank Warren.