Radio Freethinker

Vancouver's Number 1 Skeptical Podcast and Radio Show

Posts Tagged ‘asteroid’

RFT Ep 255 – Dirty Dozen Edition

Posted by Don McLenaghen on June 13, 2014

Download the episode here! 

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The dirty dozen and misreporting toxic food

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A loyal listener told me that they regretfully were switching to organic apples. “Why?” I asked. They said they read on the CBC website about the Dirty Dozen…the 12 most toxic laden fruits and veggies in our supermarkets.

I discovered the Dirty Dozen is published by the Environmental Working Group (EWG)…I investigated their claims, evaluated their data (not really theirs but the USDA) and after a little more research proclaimed the story rubbish.

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It got worse though, first because it was such a poor example of “journalism” by the CBC…it took be a few minutes to raise some red-flags about the story and an hour or 3 to complete debunk it…and yet the CBC not only reported uncritically but expanded by include and even worse study.

Secondly, i seem to have my loyal listeners that they did not seem to know how to evaluate this story. So listen to see both why the dirty in the Dirty Dozen applies to the EWG more than the flora and how you too can debunk a story like this.

Further Reading:

Blinded by Science

Our semi-regular segment about cool science stories…this week:

Blinded by Science – Mice gotta run

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Ever wonder why a mouse will run in those little wheels? Do they like it, are they bored or is it a sign of psychosis? Well, someone did some finally set out to answer that question…list to find out why and how snails came in second place in the wheelly marathon.

Further Reading:

Blinded by Science –  The Beast asteroid

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This past weekend a continent-killing asteroid whizzed by the earth, what makes this one so scaring is we did not know it was coming until April this year. We talk about the asteroid and the need to increase spending in locating near-earth object…especially those that might want to hit the planet .

Further Reading:

Blinded by Science – DNA expands

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DNA is the foundation of all life on earth…as far as we know the universe. Well, scientist have improved on the (at least) billions year old formula. No longer are we limited to the traditional two base pairs…they have added another. Why? How? Listen and find out.

Further Reading:

Prairie Correspondent – Reflections on the phrase “thank god”

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This week, our correspondent reflect on “thank god” how we use it, abuse it and well, just sometimes get it wrong.
Web Wisdom – How to choose your news

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There is a lot of  “news” on the internet…most of crap. Listen in on a Ted-Ed talk that help show you how to separate the chaff from the wheat.

D-Day…meaning to Canada and the context of controversy

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D-Day is 70 years old. One of the most pivotal moments in western history. It is also a story of coming of age for Canada as one of the three nations (along side the US and UK) to be given the task of taking a beach (Juno)…we, not only succeeded but was perhaps the most successful under some of the hardest resistance of any of the landing forces.
Canada-landings June6th
I also talk about how heartless and stinging the Harper Government has been in only providing about 40% of the funds need for our dwindling number of vets (most 90 and up) participate in this 70th anniversary. Or it started out that way, but i go where the evidence leads me, and as it turns out (from my research, please correct me if i have it wrong)…Canada seems to be the only nation subsidizing our vets at all.
Tuesday, February 4, 2014
I started out being negative because of the large amount of bad press this issue has received, which now seems unwarranted. This lead to more important question…why the anger?
As it turns out, context is everything. Listen and find out why people are so angry over what seems to be a generous government.
Further Reading:

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Radio Freethinker Episode 195 – Insight into Insite Edition

Posted by Don McLenaghen on January 8, 2013

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This week:
– The End is Nigh,
The Doh! of Doha,
– Looking back at psychic predictions,

– Van Courier Fail
, and
– Interview with Dr. Thomas Kerr about Vancouver’s Insite.

Download the episode here!
(Due to technical issues, this episode’s quality may not be up to our regular standards…our station podcast server is still down)

The End is Nigh

jmp050607lThis year will be a existing year for cosmic visitors to earth. We discuss four expected flybys by cosmic rubble.

Find out more:

Looking back at psychic predictions

the_economic_argumentDon reviews some of the predictions made last year by psychics. We assess their hits, misses and farces.

Find out more:

Van Courier Fail

nyer-image2Ethan expresses his opinion about local newspaper The Vancouver Courier decision to use their front page to post “The Year In Stars” – astrological predictions from their in-house astrologer. We also examine those predictions.

Find out more:

The Doh! of Doha
(Sorry, ran out of time for  this segment…check out our next show)

Don reviews one of the most under-reported yet vitally critical stories of 2012 – the Doha Climate Change conference. 

Interview with Dr. Thomas Kerr about Vancouver’s Insite.

ThomasKerr-WebWe talk to Dr. Kerr about harm reduction, the Insite experiment, drug law and the downward spiral of our current governments attitude towards hard reduction.

Dr. Thomas Kerr is the co-director of the Addiction and Urban Health Research Initiative at the British Columbia Centre for Excellence in HIV/AIDS, Associate Professor in the Department of Medicine at the University of British Columbia (Division of AIDS), as well as a Michael Smith Foundation for Health Research Scholar.

In his role at the British Columbia Centre for Excellence in HIV/AIDS, Dr. Kerr is a principal investigator of several large cohort studies involving people who inject drugs and individuals living with HIV/AIDS, including the Vancouver Injection Drug Users Study (VIDUS).

Find out more:

Skeptical Highlights:

Vancouver Comic Con

Sunday, January 13th, 2013
11am to 5pm
Admission: $4.00
Kids under 14: Free
Heritage Hall on Main, Vancouver

Idle No More meets The Harper!

Friday Jan 11
Although the issues are focused on First Nation rights, this is perhaps the strongest move against the autocratic Harper Government. If they can make some headway, the rest of the progressive movement should follow their lead.

CFI Vancouver’s book club – Voodoo Histories

January 12th at 1pm
Grind & Gallery Coffee Bar
“Voodoo Histories: The Role of the Conspiracy Theory in Shaping Modern History’ by David Aaronovitch.

CFI Cafe Inquiry – Has Violence Declined?

January 19th at 1pm
Room 2200 of SFU Harbour Centre
This cafe will discuss of Steven Pinker’s latest book “The Better Angels of Our Nature: Why Violence Has Declined” The central thesis of the book is that human beings have become less violent over the course of our history. From war to violent assault, Pinker believes that there is convincing evidence that we are living in the most peaceful time in human history.

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