The summer has almost ended. In the morning, I teach my first class in Wisconsin. I’m teaching two different syllabi this semester, the first time I’ve done that in a while. I’m teaching 2 sections of “Conspiracy Theory” and a section of “Extraordinary Claims.” The extraordinary claims course will be for more developmental writers, but it is still a seminar class, which is fun.
As you might imagine, I have been rather busy over the last few days, getting things together for the class and so on. Add to that the fact that my smart phone (where I first pick up most of my leads for this feature) committed suicide this week, and you will see that my offerings are somewhat limited. Nevertheless we persevere!
- News flash: Joseph Farah is still a creep. This time he calls the Southern Poverty Law Center a hate group. Ah, the “I’m rubber, you’re glue” defense. How…piquant. Of course, he shouldn’t have linked to the article he was talking about, since the SPLC article is far more nuanced that Farah acknowledges and shows that Farah in fact declined an interview. Sue them or shut up, Joe.
- When Obama did an AMA on reddit, which clogged the site, people accused the White House of sockpuppetting. The person who posted the so-called softball question has come out.
- It looks like the Republican National Convention platform committee did in fact adopt the Agenda 21 conspiracy theory.
- Sigh. “West Nile Virus ‘Outbreak’ Justifies Spraying Toxic Chemicals onto Citizens.” It’s tiresome to endlessly have to explain that toxicity depends in part on dosage. I would say, however, that 41 people dying counts as an “outbreak” in my book, and not an ” ‘outbreak’ “.
- Veterans are disappearing into Nazi-like psychiatric centers!
- WAL-MART IS THE LAW!
- You want to know why returning to the gold standard is such a colossally bad idea? The Atlantic wants to tell you.
- Is Ron Paul a Masonic Jew? The Red Pill Factory (not connected to “Big Pharma”) wants to know.
- It’s hard to believe that Ron Paul wasn’t just handed the keys to the White House outright, amirite? Take the following article from the Daily Paul, which was so frantic that they ran out of title: “Expected Mass Arrests Of Banksters And Affiliated Government Officials by Military, Sheriffs, Militia For Committing Treason And.” (To be fair, this was voted WAY down by users.)
- At David Icke’s site, the lunatics have taken over the asylum. No, that’s the real name of the post.
- Why in the World Are They Spraying is now out. I saw the world premier of “What in the World Are They Spraying” in Atlanta a few years ago, but I’m pretty sure you can watch the sequel without knowing what happened in the first one. I saw the first one and had no idea what was going on.
- Breathtaking bigot Laurie Roth: Obama and Islam Taking Over America–Just as Planned.
- Al-Jazeera reports on the conspiracy theories that have dogged Obama.
- I don’t know who Bill Whittle is, but I instantly dislike him (dude, look up FERPA). Take his coverage of Barack Obama, and then look at what the Daily Show did to the premise of this weird screed:
- Joe Paterno conspiracy theories.
- It seems there is a new academic paper out on the type of people who deny climate change…but in the news coverage I do not see “genuinely misinformed,” which gives me pause. Guess I must read this sucker myself.
- Popeye at Federal Jack, who once “called me out,” argues, NYC was not hit by a hurricane on 9/11, therefore 9/11 was an inside job. Of course, no hurricanes at all hit the STATE of New York that year, but the important thing was that NYC was not hit on September 11th. Because that’s how evidence works. (My reply to Plopeye is here.)
- The Romney campaign threatened “to drop a PR A-Bomb on Ron Paul’s name and legacy.” Why they’d do that after Ron Paul already has is beyond me.
- Jonathan Kay: France’s investigation into Arafat’s death is catnip for conspiracy theorists.
- Rep. Allen West showed a film at the RNC that claims that the so-called “Ground Zero mega-mosque” is part of a plan to impose Sharia on the US.
- NO. This is not how you do it, Ruth Manuel-Logan. You don’t get to recite a litany of debunkings of the “CIA created crack” conspiracy theory and end your article with: “What do I say? The U.S. government is pretty proficient at covering up what they don’t want us to know, so the jury is still out as far as I’m concerned.” You’re essentially saying, “I have no evidence. But fuck that.” Try thinking, please. It’s soooo satisfying.
- Salon and SPLC join forces in reporting on the claim that Hurricane Isaac was brewed up by the Dems. Of course, Alex Jones thinks it’s being used to acclimatize us to having the military in our streets.
- I’m surprised I hadn’t heard of this case of militia members in Georgia killing one of their own.
- Arizona, I’m pretty sure you are why Canada is scared of us. Arizona GOP happy to say they don’t want American baby-killing Middle Eastern Moooslims in the state, like, at all. Not even legally. The rationale seems to be that if they put on big sombreros you can’t tell the difference between them and Mexicans.
- Ha ha! Robert Scheaffer (whose book I picked up at TAM) lays bare the CSI-CIA connection!
- The award for the classiest comment of the week goes to Jason Bermas, who twot upon hearing that Arlen Specter’s cancer had reappeared:
Is this the end of cover up establishment Warren Commission Puppet Arlen Specter? http://t.co/XACbCEkx – Jason Bermas (@JasonBermas)
Headline of the Week:
That gem was closely followed by this one from the Village Voice blog:
Twits of the Week:
Not only does Obama’s birth certificate not exist, OBAMA DOESN’T EVEN EXIST. #eastwooding — Paul Fidalgo (@PaulFidalgo)
(Unfortunately, it was later reported that Ron Paul was in fact still alive and healthy.)
That’s all for now, people! Now, where do I pick up my big government shill check?
FYI, we have another edition of the Virtual Skeptics coming up this Wednesday at 8:00PM Eastern in our Google+ On Air hangout. As far as stories go, we’ve scooped the most popular skeptic podcast two weeks in a row. We’re going for a three-fer!