Bay Area Skeptics

The San Francisco Bay Area's skeptical organization since 1982

from the desk of Herb Masters

Greetings Science Supporters,

You can’t say these aren’t interesting times!  Let’s, for a brief moment, look at the big picture.  It’s not spring anymore!  There has been a lot going on that isn’t related to the problems we are facing here on earth that is either uplifting or uplooking!  Even the news today casts a shadow over what we can enjoy in the universe and right here on good ol’ planet Earth. 

Though I have to admit I haven’t seen it yet, there is a great night show going on.  Neowise sounds like some sort of pseudointellectual slang but it isn’t.  You might wonder where Comet NEOWISE is now, or  what does NEOWISE look like?  Maybe you saw this one about our wonderful sun and what it has been up to.  The moon is always doing something as well.  Did you notice it this past Saturday?

There have been two elephants in the “room” that are overshadowing everything these days.  I’m not going to talk about politics and the upcoming election.  Covid-19 still keeps grabbing the headlines and scaring more people every day now that a lot of covid/science deniers are actually catching it.  Needless to say, we have been getting swamped with Covid-19 info.    The problem of being able to trust the info you are hearing can be overwhelming, here’s a good article…  The epic battle against coronavirus misinformation and conspiracy theories   Here are some more links worth a look…  Denial of Science,  The epic battle against coronavirus misinformation and conspiracy theories,  &  Why False Claims About COVID-19 Refuse to Die  The worst of the web seems to have been unable to refrain from generating huge quantities of bad, potentially really harmful, info.  I just want to share with you a few sites that I have come to trust that unfortunately aren’t as mainstream as I would hope… 

CFI Corona Virus Resource Center  
The Tricky Math of Herd Immunity for COVID-19  
Archives for Information As Power

Its summer and usually things are a bit lighter on our calendar.  It seems like there are definitely more than usual for this time of year.  Here are a few that I think are really going to be worth catching, from the comfort of your own home or office! 

A virtual fireside chat with Dr. Anthony Fauci (Livestream) Monday 10:30 AM
Black Cats in Dark Places: Conspiracy Theories  Tuesday 9:30 AM
New Therapies from the Microbiome – Livestream Thursday 10:00 AM
Algorithmic Accountability – Livestream Thursday 7:00 PM Sounds geeky but give it a try!

Here are some bits of lighter info and entertainment of sorts…  A Brief Compendium of Medical Quackery, and Fossil Excavation Goes Wrong in the Worst Possible Way   Also take a look at these…The pastafarian argument and Who doesn’t need to look at a few amazing birds? 

Keep learning in spite of it all!  We need to be the best informed electorate ever.

herb masters

“In conclusion, thank you for taking the time to hear our views and beliefs. I hope I was able to convey the importance of teaching this theory to your students. We will of course be able to train the teachers in this alternate theory. I am eagerly awaiting your response, and hope dearly that no legal action will need to be taken.”  Bobby Henderson, concerned citizen.

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