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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.

SWIFT February 1, 2008 PDF Print E-mail
Swift
Written by James Randi   

More Superstition in High Places, In Australia Too, Hidden Motives, I’m Properly Scolded, Snap It Up!, Psychic Well Busted, Crisis For Quackery, It’s Certainly Remote, More Tiresome Details, We’re Blocked, Please Define “Crackpot,” Starbuck Wisdom, and In Conclusion…

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Reader Adam Beach, in New Zealand, reports:

I just thought you and your readers might find this interesting, recently our country has had an unusually large number of brutal murders and attacks, which has made the politicians whip up into a frenzy, as it makes for good issues to gain votes on. However, some have some rather silly explanations. Here is an excerpt from one of the local papers:

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SWIFT January 25, 2008 PDF Print E-mail
Swift
Written by James Randi   

The Geller Effect Lives On, Oregon “Scientific”?, Updates, Mission Impossible, An Excellent Opportunity, UFO Observations, Because You Need Quackery, Bear With Us, A Simple Solution, Pat’s Back – With More Prophecies, PBS Persists in Woo-Woo, That Highway, You Mean the Prophecy Was Wrong?, Ho Ho Ho, In Conclusion…

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Here is – essentially – a diatribe against the perceived fuddy-duddy convictions of shortsighted modern scientists. It was written by author Colin Bennett, who says that

…the problem here is that in the 20th century we have lost the relationship between imagination and fact.

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SWIFT January 18, 2008 PDF Print E-mail
Swift
Written by James Randi   

Geller Reversal, The Law Is a Ass, It’s All in the Mind, That Magnet Claim From Last Week, Highway of Holiness, Dowsing Update, Remember TM?, Good Comment, Miracle Substance For Sale, The Q-Ray Swindle in Canada, In Closing…

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Didn’t I tell you that Uri Geller, due to the recent exposures of his tricks on YouTube and on live TV, was no longer able to support the mythology that he is psychic, and now has to back away from the firm claims to genuine psychic power that he’s made for the last 35 years? Well, he’s done so. Reader Stefan Pochmann writes:

At youtube.com/watch?v=zGrn1IkMXbE you can see Geller in a recent German show completely failing to guess a picture of a square with four dots in it. Then at 2:14 into the video he explains:

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SWIFT January 11, 2008 PDF Print E-mail
Swift
Written by James Randi   

More Nonsense, Hoax Still Active, Plain and Simple - It's a Magic Charm, Welcome News, The Anouncement, Warning, Edward Down Under, Bagged Psychics, Pendulum Magic, A Surprise to Look Into, Oops!, He Should Know, Science-Based Medicine, Re 666, Sylvia Again, IQ Test, Justice Is Served, In Conclusion...

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Reader James Todd, Ph.D., with the Department of Psychology at Eastern Michigan University, Ypsilanti, comments on the continuing academic endorsement of the ridiculous “Facilitated Communication” [FC] notion as a means of treating autistic children. See www.randi.org/joom/content/view/121/27/#i1 for our most recent mention of this subject. Dr. Todd writes:

In case people are wondering, Nancy Cantor, Syracuse University Chancellor, has recently confirmed her FC true belief. I suppose that her appointing Douglas Biklen as Dean of the Syracuse College of Education, was probably enough to demonstrate that. But this nails it down.

In a speech delivered on September 7 this year, Cantor (a Stanford-trained Ph.D. in Psychology) stated:

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SWIFT January 4, 2008 PDF Print E-mail
Swift
Written by James Randi   

A Few Thoughts at Year’s End, It Seems that Everybody’s Doing It, More Denial of Death, The JREF Million-Dollar Challenge, More Geller, A Frantic Question, Pseudoscience In Full Bloom, I Learn Something New Every Day, A Simplified Art, Yet More Creationist Boo-Boos, From Israel, Another Conversion, A New Level of Nonsense Has Been Reached, How Exciting Can Science Get?, and In Conclusion…

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On Xmas morning, the NBC-TV “Today Show” featured the Washington Performing Arts Society singing a rather upbeat version of the Hallelujah Chorus. It was just great, though Handel might have had an attack of the vapors on hearing it. Then the show took off on a religious treatment of the whole holiday scene, though some of this was encouraging, I must admit. Last week I pontificated on a presidential candidate’s religious attitudes being important rather than only peripheral to his/her qualifications, as so many have opined. Now “Today” has informed us that a survey says 70% of American voters want a religious presidential candidate… Man the barricades!

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