Sunday, January 2, 2011

Conspiracy Theory, Pt. 1.

Oh dearie, dearie me I am so late with this one. If nobody does the homework I don't care. I'm just so happy to be HOME!!!! Meanwhile, though we're going to cover conspiracy theory in general and how to critique it at a later date, we'll take a trip down 9/11 Truther Lane this week. Kelly suggested I watch the film "Loose Change" which I did. It was fascinating. Two years ago had I watched this film I wouldn't have known what to think. Now with a critical thinking toolbelt and a logical fallacy toolbox, I was able to sit down and watch this film and spot what was wrong with it. It's an exercise in Critical Thinking 101. Your mission this week, should you choose to accept it, is to watch one of the three versions of Loose Change with a pen and paper (or I guess laptop?) and write down when you think the filmmaker is off-track. You'll need a lot of paper.  

There are several other places to go to help yourself out. Penn and Teller did a Bullshit about it. There are several critiques by skeptics here and I guess this is a video critique? haven't watched, it's long. Also of course there is the Popular Mechanics debunking.

As we all know the internet is chock full of information, the vast majority of it false. In this technological era, those of us with two brain cells to rub together are obligated to be able to sift through information, recognize the signs of bullshit and somehow derive the truth. Then we're obligated to spread the truth to our friends and family who may not have as many brain cells. American Idol does that to you. Anyway the next few skeptics meetups will be dedicated to recognizing bullshit. Bring your stories, your logical fallacies, your bullshit. This will culminate on Feb 5 in a mass homeopathy overdose in solidarity with the Merseyside Skeptics 10:23 Campaign.
"...we're announcing the 10:23 Challenge for 2011 - we want to show global unity by gathering protesters from more than 10 countries, and more than 23 cities. Our aim is to have more than 1023 activists publicly gathering over the weekend of 5th-6th February, to make a statement: Homeopathy - There's Nothing In It."

I've already committed our group to this campaign - place to be determined, time 10:23am. Another mass overdose and wasn't the last one fun??? Please join us to do so, every body counts and I'll video the event for posterity. Or Bryan will. 
Again, I must say, so happy to be home amongst my skeptics/heathens. I just spoke to my 83 year old grandmother for over an hour. She's the coolest person on the planet. She said she can feel it in her bones that this is going to be a great year for me. (Ha ha, I realize this is unsubstantiated prediction, but it's my GRANDMA!) I think she's right. Not just for me but for everyone involved in this group. 2011 is going to rock. My goal is to get as many of us as possible to TAM 9 in Vegas. The Save the Date is July 14-17. Mark your calendars and start planning. Kitsap County Skeptics are going to represent this year! W00T!


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