All Episodes


June 04, 2010

Chris Mooney

This week’s guest is Naomi Oreskes, co-author with historian Eric Conway of the new book Merchants of Doubt: How a Handful of Scientists Obscured the Truth on Issues from Tobacco Smoke to Global Warming. Through extensive archival research, Oreskes and Conway have managed to connect the dots between a large number of seemingly separate anti-science …

May 28, 2010

Robert M. Price

S. T. Joshi is a leading authority on H. P. Lovecraft, Ambrose Bierce, H. L. Mencken, and other writers, mostly in the realms of supernatural and fantasy fiction. He has edited corrected editions of the works of Lovecraft, several annotated editions of Bierce and Mencken, and has written such critical studies as The Weird Tale …

May 21, 2010

Chris Mooney

This week, we learned that J. Craig Venter has at long last created a synthetic organism—a simple life form constructed, for the first time, by man. Let the controversy begin—and if New Yorker staff writer Michael Specter is correct, the denial of science will be riding hard alongside it. In his recent book Denialism: How …

May 14, 2010

Karen Stollznow

George Hrab is a composer, professional musician, singer, songwriter, podcaster, and skeptic. George is the Host and Producer of the Geologic Podcast, a popular weekly show about music, comedy, science, and skepticism. The drummer in the band Philadelphia Funk Authority, he is a successful multi-instrumentalist musician who has performed on-stage with Elton John, and given a performance in the White …

May 07, 2010

Chris Mooney

It’s hard to think of an issue more contentious these days than the relationship between faith and science. If you have any doubt, just flip over to the science blogosphere: You’ll see the argument everywhere. In the scholarly arena, meanwhile, the topic has been approached from a number of angles: by historians of science, for …

April 30, 2010

Robert M. Price

Lois Schadewald’s interest in both science and pseudoscience rubbed off on her from her brilliant brother Robert J. Schadewald, a prolific author and debater. When Bob died a decade ago he left behind a legacy of published essays and book chapters, as well as much unpublished material including a complete manuscript on the history of …

April 23, 2010

Chris Mooney

For many of us, chemistry is something we remember with groans from high school. Periodic Table of the Elements—what a pain to memorize, and what was the point, anyway? So how do you take a subject like chemistry and make it exciting, intriguing, and compelling? With her new book The Poisoner’s Handbook, Pulitzer Prize winning …

April 16, 2010

Karen Stollznow

Dr. Robert Todd Carroll is a Fellow of the Committee for Skeptical Inquiry, and author of The Skeptic’s Dictionary: A Collection of Strange Beliefs, Amusing Deceptions, and Dangerous Delusions. He is Emeritus Professor of Philosophy at Sacramento City College, where he taught Logic and Critical Reasoning, Critical Thinking about the Paranormal, Law, Justice and Punishment, …

April 09, 2010

Chris Mooney

For two decades now, we’ve failed to seriously address climate change. So the planet just keeps warming—and it could get very bad. Picture major droughts, calving of gigantic ice sheets, increasingly dramatic sea level rise, and much more. Against this backdrop, the idea of a technological fix to solve the problem—like seeding the stratosphere with …

April 02, 2010

Robert M. Price

Thomas J.J. Altizer burst onto the religious scene in the 1960s with his book The Gospel of Christian Atheism. He was one of the “Death of God” theologians discussed in the famous TIME cover story, “Is God Dead?” Altzier holds an M.A. in theology and Ph.D. in History of Religions from the Universeity of Chicago. …