“OH MY GOD!!! Lights off the South Carolina coast

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MYRTLE BEACH: UFOs in SC? Lights in sky a mystery along Myrtle Beach coast. The videos show orange lights that appear and disappear. At one point, they multiply into at least eight small lights that litter the sky. “This is a mystery,” said Peter Davenport, director of the National UFO Reporting Center (NUFORC) near Seattle,…

Razor blades and cocaine for trick-or-treat?

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These scare stories about Halloween are typically blown out of proportion but I did find these two. In Canada: Razor blade found in London child’s treat bag, police say -Canoe.ca London, Ont. police are warning parents to be check their children’s candy after a double-sided razor blade was found in a trick-or-treat bag on Wednesday…

BUH BYE, Rachel from Cardholder Services

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I can’t even count the times this extremely annoying robocall was logged to my home AND cell phones. I’m very glad this scam’s been rubbed out. FTC Hangs Up On “Rachel From Cardholder Services”. For several years, American consumers have been receiving unwanted robocalls with a recorded message from “Rachel” or one of her fictional…

Pilots worried chemtrail conspiracy theorists may try to shoot down airliners

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Jet pilots fear ‘chemtrail’ attacks | The Australian AIRLINE pilots fear their jumbos could be shot down by conspiracy theorists who believe they are being poisoned by commercial aircraft. The conspiracy theorists are part of a global “chemtrail” movement that claims jets are spraying toxic chemicals over heavily-populated towns and cities around the world. “Threats…

It’s the Halloween lobster

The Halloween lobster, Pinchy

Lobster all dressed up for Halloween in orange and black. Dana Duhaime, a lobsterman from Salem, discovered the crustacean Sunday in one of his traps in Bakers Channel and an aquarium biologist picked up the one-pound female and brought it to the aquarium for its debut after Hurricane Sandy. The “split” coloring occurs once in…

Healing cancer: If alternative treatments work, they would not be “alternative”

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Foreign cancer treatments offering victims false hope?. The Fitzrandolph family knows what it’s like to take on a challenge. Their son’s gold medal pursuit meant a lot of sacrifices for many years. The family’s new challenge? Standing behind their daughter’s alternative path to healing her cancer. She found the lump in her breast when she…

Acupuncture trial for fatigue lacks placebo group, is positive

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A new study assesses the effectiveness of acupuncture for cancer-related fatigue (CRF) in patients with breast cancer. Acupuncture for Cancer-Related Fatigue in Patients With Breast Cancer: A Pragmatic Randomized Controlled Trial We conducted a pragmatic, randomized controlled trial comparing acupuncture with enhanced usual care. Three hundred two outpatients with breast cancer participated. We randomly assigned 75…

Leftover Links for October 31, 2012

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Hungry for more? Check out these tasty tidbits… No doubt they are valuable in searches but are they reliable? Sniffer dogs on trial. Are Dogs ‘Scientific Devices’? This is a very credulous and completely clueless reporter that has never heard of orbs showing up in photos. But the commenters knew. Mystery ‘orb’ memories haunt The…

Nope, no ghosts to see here. Move along.

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For a change of pace from those ENDLESS and silly tales of local ghost tales and “serious” paranormal investigtors who research them (who are extraordinarily busy this time of year), we have a reality check. All sites are NOT haunted and those silly stories are NOT welcome everywhere. Halloween hauntings a headache for some Chattanooga…

Sandy reveals skeletal surprise

Photo credit: Thomas MacMillan / New Haven Independent

Skeletal remains found in uprooted tree. A century-old tree in New Haven was uprooted Monday afternoon by Sandy’s winds, exposing skeletal remains of unknown origin, as reported by the New Haven Independent. The woman, Katie Carbo, made the discovery around 3:15 p.m. near the corner of College and Chapel streets. Visible among the roots of…

Soul theory: Oh, they used the Q word

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Scientists offer quantum theory of soul’s existence. American Dr Stuart Hameroff and British physicist Sir Roger Penrose developed a quantum theory of consciousness asserting that our souls are contained inside structures called microtubules which live within our brain cells. Their idea stems from the notion of the brain as a biological computer, “with 100 billion…

Leftover Links for October 30, 2012

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Still hungry for news today? Wow, you got some addiction there. Here are some leftovers that didn’t make it to our front page.   A very good piece about how we call storms “monsters” and look for a scapegoat (global warming, immorality) to blame. But really? We pretty much survived OK. Blaming Hurricane Sandy on…

Leo Igwe partners with JREF to respond to witchcraft problem in Africa

Leo Igwe, JREF Fellow

Leo Igwe Appointed as New JREF Research Fellow. The James Randi Educational Foundation today announces the appointment of Leo Igwe as a research fellow. The appointment will support his work advancing skepticism throughout Africa and around the world. Mr. Igwe is a skeptical activist from Nigeria and a former representative of the International Humanist and…

Homeopathic product may fool parents into non-action for child’s serious illness

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Kids Smart’s dumb ads: consumers complain of misleading claims. Pharmacare Laboratories is facing a new complaint about its Kids Smart homeopathic medicines amid concerns parents who use the products may delay seeking medical treatment. The complaint – lodged by a group of oranisations including CHOICE to the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) – alleges…

Slate slides downhill

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Dr. Harriet Hall tells us about Slate.com rejecting an article that is critical of Dr. Andrew Weil. Science-Based Medicine » Andrew Weil/AAFP Article Rejected by Slate I was asked to write an article for Slate, the on-line magazine, about Andrew Weil’s selection as the keynote speaker for the 2012 AAFP annual scientific assembly. The science and…

Polish Catholic Church down on ‘Satanic’ Halloween

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Party poopers! BBC News – Polish Catholic Church in Halloween warning. Poland’s Catholic Church has warned that modern Halloween rituals risk promoting the occult. In a statement on its website, the Church said that celebrating Halloween could contradict Church teachings and Christianity. One archbishop said the 31 October celebrations were promoting paganism to young people.…

You keep using that word, “Skepticism”…

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I do not think it means what you think it means. Conspiracy Theory Experts: Skepticism Is Part Of Our National Identity : It’s All Politics : NPR. Conspiracy theory experts say that the tendency toward distrust of power is neither uniquely partisan nor entirely detrimental. In fact, they say, it’s par for the course for…

Leftover Links for October 29, 2012

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Some interesting bits and pieces left over from today you may want to chew on.   Press for Skepticamp New Hampshire Keep an open mind, but not so open that your brain falls out – NashuaTelegraph.com. In a followup to the Icke at Wembley story: We’re all holograms ruled by reptiles (and the Queen’s fuelled…

Obama: Accused of being a real life Storm from X-Men

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Conspiracy Theorists Say Obama Engineered Hurricane Sandy. As Hurricane Sandy blasts the eastern seaboard just over a week before Election Day, a number of conspiracy theorists have decided President Barack Obama engineered the mega-storm to secure his re-election. HAARP, a research program managed by the U.S. Air Force and U.S. Navy, studies and conducts experiments…

Professor Green is NOT a scientist

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A U.K. survey reveals that U.K. students don’t know a real scientist from a rapper? Almost one million school children think Professor Green is a scientist, says study –  The Independent Almost one million school children aged five to 16 think rapper Professor Green is a scientist, according to research. Children are more familiar with…

Hoax Hurricane Sandy photo

Fake photo said to be Hurricane Sandy

Dangerous Minds is reporting that this fake photo is circulating around facebook as a real image of Hurricane Sandy approaching New York City. This photo is NOT real but a manipulation. About.com Urban Legends has this explanation: It was created by combining a fairly standard image of New York Harbor with a 2004 photo of…