31 July, 2015
Vic Skeptics produces original classroom material, which we make available free.
It’s mainly aimed at Science teaching and learning, but it serves a wide range of topics and age groups.
We invite you to look over and sample our down-loadable .pdfs, which include:
- “A Skeptics Guide to ……“ discussion sheets
- Crosswords (blackline masters)
- Wordsearches and quizzes (blackline masters)
- Cryptograms (blackline masters)
- The Darwin Day Suite of classroom exercises
Go HERE or click on the USEFUL INFO tab at the top of the page
31 July, 2015
AUGUST 2015 CROSSWORD PUZZLE
has the theme of OSTEOPATHY, in the light of our recent article on that topic.
There’s the usual monthly set of
LOGIC & MATHS PROBLEMS
with seven new Picture Puzzles and twenty new Mixed Bag Questions at the top of the PUZZLES PAGE
4 July, 2015
By Mal Vickers
After the self-promotional video Sally walks on stage to applause:
“Now, there is a young boy here, as I walked on, he came on with me. I’ve not had a chance to process him. His name is James. He is saying (putting on the voice of a little boy) ‘I am sorry, I am sorry’.”
Sally Morgan’s show is underway.
For the benefit of readers, I set aside an evening along with fellow Skeptic Tony Pitman to report on popular UK psychic Sally Morgan’s show. Braving a very cold mid-winter’s Melbourne night to attend, we sat amongst 500 people in the audience of the Athenaeum Theatre which was at approximately 50% capacity.
Sally Morgan is one of the best known psychics in the UK, but is less well known in Australia. She has certainly attracted a fair share of controversy in the UK (see here, here and here).
I did a little research before attending; well, when I say ‘research’ I mean that I watched a few of Sally Morgan’s promotional You-Tube videos. The most obvious difference between the promotional videos and the actual live gig Read the rest of this entry »
30 June, 2015
JULY 2015 SKEPTICAL CROSSWORD PUZZLE
has the theme of CONSPIRACY THEORIES
There’s also a set of
JULY 2015 LOGIC & MATHS PROBLEMS
Seven new Picture Puzzles and twenty new Mixed Bag Questions have been placed at the top of the PUZZLES PAGE
12 June, 2015
Roy Arnott, long-standing treasurer for the Victorian Skeptics, was awarded the Medal of the Order of Australia (OAM) in the recent Queen’s birthday honours list. He received the honour for his service to the preservation of military history and to veterans.
Continue reading HERE.
Also honoured was Australian Skeptics co-founder and patron Dick Smith, who was created a Companion of the Order of Australia (AC).
Dick has supported a range of humanitarian, social welfare and conservation organisations, medical research and the arts, among them Australian Skeptics
Continue reading HERE
11 June, 2015
by Mal Vickers
I love the Mind Body Spirit Festival – I really do. But I don’t love having to part with the (grrrr…..) twenty dollars just to get in. My partner tried her hand at The Secret or the power of positive thinking and attempted to get in for nothing, but the security guard shattered her confidence.
Luckily an essential oil called Confidence was readily available from the nearby Pro-Oils stand. This place made it all worthwhile. I happened to find a bottle of Clear Thinking – perfect for a Skeptic like me. I took one long, deep sniff, right to the bottom of my lungs. Somehow my world appeared better, sharper, colours were more vivid, my mind cleared, my thoughts were more focused, yes… I just inhaled a bunch of liquid herbs. You too can buy a 12ml bottle of Clear Thinking on Show special for just $13.60; a bargain as it’s normally $17.00 per bottle. I was also tempted by a bottle of Clarity / Concentration, but no, my mind was
now clear. Just looking at a bottle of Anxiety helped produce the desired effect at $13.60 and Fairy Magic was a spellbinding $20.00. Perhaps I’d accidentally inhaled a hint of ‘Critical Thinking’.
In the meantime, my partner was busy haggling over the price of a bottle of Happiness. “What? $13.60? I’m not happy about that!” she protested. I think she’d caught a whiff of Confidence. The bloke on the till didn’t crack a smile. Perhaps it was a blend of Headache and Fear. It might have been time for him to D-Stress and Chill Out at a total of $54.40.
At another stand my partner wanted to try some makeup that would highlight her eyebrows. The saleslady worked her magic with a little brush. “That looks better; what’s it made from?” my partner enquired whilst looking into a mirror. “Natural sea minerals from Italy” said the saleslady. I piped up, “Possibly Read the rest of this entry »
30 May, 2015
By Mal Vickers
I was recently asked, “Does osteopathy work? Is it scientific?” The short answer is: osteopathy is unlikely to be effective for most health conditions. It’s a form of alternative medicine. I wouldn’t put it in the category of a science–based medicine. Read on if you’re interested in why I would think such a thing.
It’s difficult to definitively answer questions like this for three reasons.
One – Science is all about probability.
Two – it’s hard to prove a negative.
Three – it’s not a very clear question.
If the idea is to sort the wheat from the chaff in medical treatments, there are better/tougher questions to ask.
Let’s try to explore it.
Whole health disciplines might contain just a handful of useful treatments for some ailments, Read the rest of this entry »