Exposing PseudoAstronomy

November 30, 2015

Podcast Episode 144: Why We Know About Things Far Away but Not Nearby, and Lots of New News

How can we know ’bout
Stuff far ‘way but not nearby?
Big conspiracy?

The return! This episode has a shorter main segment in favor of having some new news, all of them sent in by listeners. In the episode, I address a claim that I hear in many different contexts that basically boils down to, “How can we know about far away stuff but we don’t even know about close stuff!” I provide two examples, many analogies, an experiment you can do yourself, and my usual dry, witless humor.

The logical fallacies segment discusses the False Equivalence fallacy.

For the New News, I talk about the exosystem discovery by Kepler that made the news in mid-October, space law and possible violations by bills in the US Congress, and the new farthest known object in the solar system.

And yes, this is episode 144, there has not yet been an episode 143. It will come out “soon.” Where “soon” is an undefined unit of time, and it will be back-dated to November 1.



  1. Good episode. I hope you can get the St Whitehalls on at some point to discuss the space law news.

    Comment by Graham — December 2, 2015 @ 6:09 pm | Reply

  2. Hey thanks!

    I have not researched anything on the legislation in Congress. It is not unheard of for countries to abrogate treaties. There usually are clauses in treaties that a State needs to give notice of withdraw . . . etc. What struck me is if Congress passes a law that conflicts with a ratified treaty that has not been officially abrogated then presumably at some point the Supreme Court would have a conflict of law question on their hands. I am sure there is case law out there. Interesting question.

    Comment by Nigel — December 2, 2015 @ 6:35 pm | Reply

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