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Decoding the Bible Code

The Bible Code claims that hidden in the first five books of the Bible in its original Hebrew text are hidden messages in code that made predictions thousands of years ago about current events, such as the assassination of JFK and the end of the world. In this episode Michael Shermer decodes the Bible Code and reveals it to be a form of numerology that serves as a supreme example of pattern-seeking (and finding) behavior of which we are so skilled.

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Graphology Part 1

Graphology, or handwriting analysis, claims that personality characteristics such as introversion and extraversion can be inferred from the form and structure of letters, words, and sentences (introverts, for example, are said to write in smaller letters, extraverts in larger letters). Shermer puts graphology to the experimental test, showing that if you do not already know the personality characteristic you are looking for in the handwriting, graphology is no better than chance.

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Graphology Part 2

Graphology, or handwriting analysis, claims that personality characteristics such as introversion and extraversion can be inferred from the form and structure of letters, words, and sentences (introverts, for example, are said to write in smaller letters, extraverts in larger letters). Shermer puts graphology to the experimental test, showing that if you do not already know the personality characteristic you are looking for in the handwriting, graphology is no better than chance.

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Shermer on The Colbert Report

Being interviewed (if that’s what you can call it) by the inimitable Stephen Colbert was one of the wilder experiences of my career. I would imagine by now that most readers of eSkeptic know that Comedy Central’s hit series The Colbert Report features the comedian Stephen Colbert playing a role that is largely a parody of Bill O’Reilly and The O’Reilly Factor. Exaggerating the extremes of the conservative position on nearly everything, Colbert gets in his hilarious digs by arguing against liberals and liberalism. Well, words don’t do the show justice. You just have to see it. Anyway, I was on last Tuesday night. The show is taped in New York. (continue reading…)

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The (Other) Secret

The inverse square law trumps the law of attraction
magazine cover

An old yarn about a classic marketing con game on the secret of wealth instructs you to write a book about how to make a lot of money and sell it through the mail. When your marks receive the book, they discover the secret — write a book about how to make a lot of money and sell it through the mail. (continue reading…)

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