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SWIFT January 4, 2008 PDF Print E-mail
Swift
Written by James Randi   
Thursday, 03 January 2008 04:34

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…

book

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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SWIFT December 28, 2007 PDF Print E-mail
Swift
Written by James Randi   
Tuesday, 25 December 2007 10:17

There Are Other Gods Out There, Nice Try, An Expensive Magical Rod, Finding Significance, Not Just Yet, Playing the God Card, Saccharine Sooth, Tune In, Still Scamming, Medical Mythology Addressed, Viewer Comments, The Secret’s Out, Very Wise Words, Do This, Neatly and Evasively Done, In Conclusion.

commandments

Reader and frequent commentator Avital Pilpel has sent me a 334-word message that I will give you here in full, not only because it’s interesting and from an expert, but because it’s brief enough for you to handle easily. Had it been 350 words… Referring to the item at randi.org/joom/content/view/142/27/#i2, Mr. Pilpel writes:

In your discussion with Jay Roessler, both of you are – slightly – wrong, due to translation problems.

The original Hebrew says, "Lo ihyu lachem elohim acherim al panay" – you shall have no other Gods al panay. Literally, "al panay" means "on my face." It is an Hebrew idiom, meaning "in preference to me." It is often used elsewhere in the Bible in matrimonial matters, i.e., when someone divorces one wife and marries another al paneyha – "over her face" – that is, in preference to her.

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SWIFT December 21, 2007 PDF Print E-mail
Swift
Written by James Randi   
Thursday, 20 December 2007 16:10

Exposed Again, An Argument, Sokal Re-Created, My Recent Rant, The Latest High-Tech News, Involuntary Comedy, Possibly a Convert, A Just Complaint, In Closing...

pic

Thirty or so years ago, very few of us – obviously including Uri Geller – had any notion that today’s easily-available technology would catch up with simple tricks. I offer you here a video selection made back in 1976 which has now popped back into existence to further expose one of Mr. Geller’s limited repertoire of tricks. In this excerpt from the video, as you’ll see, he tries to convince his audience that a bent key continues to bend as they watch it, and in this he is very successful. You can hear the comments:

(Begins at 1:12)

Geller [to the child, Ken]: Lift your hand.

Announcer: Now lift your hand, Ken. Lift your hand. Do you see any keys bending?

Geller: No…

Child: I see one.

Geller: Oh yes, this is bending!

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SWIFT December 14, 2007 PDF Print E-mail
Swift
Written by James Randi   
Thursday, 13 December 2007 10:11

pic God Told Me to Do It, A Current Tragedy, A Step Forward, A Good Reason for Being an Atheist, Re Geller, Same Old Story, Science According to Abraham, Time for Education, Fremer Stirs!, Officially Quackery, Lights in the Sky – Again, Applied Nonsense, and In Closing…

Some of the most prominent televangelists in the USA are now under Senate investigation. See tinyurl.com/2cfh7o. As an apparent result, Richard Roberts – who took over from his father Oral – told students at Oral Roberts University that he did not want to resign as president of the scandal-plagued evangelical school, but that he did so because on Thanksgiving Day, God told him to.

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SWIFT December 7, 2007 PDF Print E-mail
Swift
Written by James Randi   
Thursday, 06 December 2007 09:30

Is Scientology a Religion?, No Surprises Here, Geller in Germany, More Assertions, Evolution Again, Does this Man Read SWIFT?, The Texas Big Back-Step, Cattywampus, Yahoo Misinformation, Fremer Still Hiding, More Dynamica, That Irrepressible Bob Park, And In Addition, Teach Them Early, A Trace of Phenomenon, Medical Medium Well Done, It Must Be Real, Assigning the Blame for Reality, and Upcoming in the New York Area…

cross

That’s the question recently pondered over at a recent Hamburg meeting of top German security officials, prompted by the Secretary of the Interior, Udo Nagel. As a result, Germany could be asked to ban the U.S.-based Church of Scientology under a proposal that contends the group violates human rights. After looking into the facts about the Church of Scientology, the German government now considers it a commercial enterprise that takes advantage of vulnerable people.

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