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JREF Swift Blog
Swift, named for Jonathan Swift, is the JREF's daily blog, featuring content from James Randi, the JREF staff, and other featured authors.

Ancient Magnesium PDF Print E-mail
Written by Harriet Hall, MD, The SkepDoc   

A company called Ancient Minerals is selling magnesium supplements that are applied to the skin rather than taken orally. Somewhat ungrammatically, they claim that "some benefits of Ancient Minerals magnesium products" include:

- Restores cellular magnesium levels
- Natural cellular protectant
- Facilitates safe and effective detoxification
- Relief of aches, pains, spasms
- Elevates mood and relieves stress
- Encourages healthy skin tissue
- Helps maintain proper muscle function
- Boosts energy levels
- Supports a healthy immune system
- Balances the hormonal system
- Calms overactive nerves
- Improves quality of sleep

The Ghost Box Challenge PDF Print E-mail
Written by Rich Montalvo   

The JREF has a very active YouTube channel through which we receive direct messages from both skeptics and believers. Sometimes we receive videos from YouTubers as proofs of paranormal activity.

Here we have one such paranormal "proof," in which the videomaker presents his evidence for the existence of ghosts. Before we respond, I thought we should ask our Swift audience to have a look at the video and provide explanations of exactly what is going on here.

Harriet Hall's Big Big News PDF Print E-mail
Written by Brandon K. Thorp   

Here's an extremely cool announcement from our friend, Harriet Hall, MD, also known as the SkepDoc. She publishes regularly here, on Science-Based Medicine, and elsewhere. She'll soon add another feather to her authorial cap, the provenance of which is so paradigm-crackingly weird that you'll barely believe it. Read below for Harriet's stunning announcement.

Ask The Skeptics: The Cottage Ghost, Global Warming PDF Print E-mail
Written by Brandon K. Thorp   

(Editor's Note: If you wish to contribute a question to Ask The Skeptics, please write an email to Questions may be edited for brevity, and frequently asked questions may be edited together so that the resulting query is representative. All questions shall be published anonymously. If you have an answer for this week's questioners, please supply it below.)


Dear Swift:

My mother has always been a hard-headed realist. (She does attend Methodist church off and on, but that's more a matter of upbringing than anything else.) She is a stubborn, no-nonsense lady and a hard worker, and she's always kept her wits about her. She is also twice-widowed - the first time when my father died in 1976 (sudden heart attack), and again when her second husband, Rupert, died in 2007 (another heart attack). Mother is 74 now and just beginning to slow down, and I'm concerned about a habit she's developed since Rupert's death.

Crocopetard PDF Print E-mail
Written by Martin A. Lessem, J.D.   

For the past few years, anyone who has been following the Creation vs. Evolution debate has come across the comment by Kirk Cameron, made on the The O'Reilly Factor, that there are no "transitional forms." His exact quote, which demonstrates his general misinformedness as to how evolution actually works, was:

"Plus, Darwin said in order to prove evolution, which is the number one alternative to God, you gotta be able to prove transitional forms. One animal transitioning into another, and all through the fossil record and life we don't find one of these. A croco-duck. There's just nothing like it. There is no one animal transitioning into another"

Not so fast, Cameron. The croco-duck has been found.

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