Exposing PseudoAstronomy

September 3, 2008

Introduction

Filed under: introduction — Stuart Robbins @ 7:25 pm
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Welcome to my blog.  This first post is to explain the purpose of this blog.  Over the past several months, I have grown more interested in the “skeptical” movement and I have started to pay more attention to the very pseudo-scientific claims that are made by many people regarding astronomy-related stuff.  A lot of people don’t really pay much attention to it because many claims really are fairly silly – such as the flat-Earth society claims, those of the hollow Earth group, or advanced cities on the moon or Mars.

But some claims are more insidious and – in my opinion – deserve to be addressed and refuted.  For example, there are many Creationist claims that deal with astronomy that are just outright lies or deceit – such as the claim by the ICR (Institute for Creation Research) that the solar neutrino problem is still a problem, or that new information about secondary craters completely destroys everything we know about a lunar timeline.

And then there are some of the more interesting things like hoaxes.  Is NASA hiding evidence of life on Mars?  Or did we really go to the moon with Apollo astronauts?  (By the way, the answers are “no” and “yes” to those.)

I really haven’t found an outlet that addresses all of these things in one place other than – to some extent – Phil Plait’s Bad Astronomy website and blog.  However, he discusses many many more things on his blog than just pseudo-science, and I want this to be fairly focused.

Throughout the coming posts, I plan on addressing everything I mentioned above with real science.  In other words, what evidenced-based research has discovered as opposed to fantastical claims, speculation, or faith.  My intent is to not resort to ad hominem attacks by bashing anyone’s character because, while they may be fun, they really don’t accomplish anything.  I also don’t plan on bashing religious beliefs of any kind – those are called “faith” for a reason.  However, when people make scientific claims based upon religion, then I will address them because it is something that is testable, falsifiable, and within the realm of science.

If any readers of this blog (hi Mom, hi Dad) come across any claims that they want me to address, go ahead and e-mail me!

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