Skeptic Newssearch - 10/29/02
BY MICHELLE MARTINEZ
""I don't believe in Bigfoot. I thought I'd let you know that I absolutely
do not believe in Bigfoot," begins Chester Moore Jr. The audience shuffles
and murmurs uneasily, as if they have been tricked. "How many people here
believe in Bigfoot?" Almost everyone warily raises a hand. Moore delivers.
"I think that believing is for religion, and I've accepted the fact that we
have a hidden species of primate in North America." Sighs of relief break
out among the believers."
Who You Gonna Call?
By Erin G. Edwards
"We've all had those odd, uncanny experiences: The dog inexplicably barking
at the basement steps, odd creaking noises throughout the house before
bedtime, barely audible whispers, flies massing at windowpanes, a spectral
play of light at the end of a hallway. Most people sleep easy with rational
explanations for these phenomena."
FDA Seizes 'Autism' Supplements
"The US Food and Drug Administration (news - web sites) said on Thursday it
had ordered the seizure of hundreds of bottles of a dietary supplement that
the agency said falsely claimed to treat autism."
BY JOHN DOUGHERTY
Phoenix New Times
"The author of a purported Attorney General's Office memo describing
widespread criminal activity in the polygamous community of Colorado City
remains unknown more than two weeks after it surfaced."
BY SUSAN GREEN
Seven Days Vermont
"A promotional piece inserted recently in copies of The Burlington Free
Press bills itself as a personal invitation to attend a Bible prophesy
adventure in the Book of Revelation. The colorful brochures cover
proclaims, Armageddon now! Time is running out for planet Earth. Another
section mentions world crisis and promises Hope beyond terrorism."
Exit the Unicorn
by Howard Altman
Philadelphia City Paper
"As he walked out of the courtroom after the jury found him guilty of
murder in the first degree, Ira Einhorn puckered his lips and seemed to
whistle to nobody as it finally dawned on him that he would be trading in
his crisp navy suit and future hopes for an orange jumper and life in a cage."
by BRIAN HICKEY
"Justice finally found Ira Einhorn."
Tarot card expert says sniper not schooled in correct use
by Karen Youso
Minneapolis Star Tribune
"Time was when a Gypsy would shuffle the tarot deck and lay out the cards
to tell a fortune. But the use of tarot cards recently by a sniper in the
Washington, D.C., area is turning the tables. The discovery of a card with
"I am God" scrawled on the back, coupled with reports of additional cards
left at the sniper's other crime scenes, leaves police and the public to
interpret the meaning."
The sage of Aquarius
by Julie N. Lynem
San Francisco Chronicle
"An Aries wants a firm handshake and the bottom line. The Aquarius steers
clear of confrontation. Scorpios, like Ted Turner and Bill Gates, are
fierce, stealthy competitors who hate flattery."
Peru, in Purple, Venerates 'Lord of the Miracles'
By Monica Vargas
"When Maria got sick with cancer, her Peruvian parents couldn't afford the
costly drugs that doctors said would save their only daughter."
'Ghosts' elevator traps 28
By David Rogers
LONG BEACH PRESS-TELEGRAM
"It probably wasn't a ghost, but 26 people visiting the Queen Mary's Ghosts
& Legends tour got more than they expected when they were trapped inside an
elevator on Sunday, officials said."
Andhra police seek divine help
By Omer Farooq
"The police in the southern Indian state of Andhra Pradesh are invoking the
gods in their fight against left-wing rebels."
Miracle in city: Lakshmi idol changes colour
Times of India
"Deep Ghosh, a trader in fish fodder, and his wife Rita had sat down for
dinner on Sunday night at their Chetla home, when they noticed something
rather strange. The idol of Goddess La-kshmi had changed colour and
acquired a distinctive greenish hue."
Panamanians Beg Pardon at Black Christ Festival
By Robin Emmott
"Thousands of Panamanians, many of them thieves, prostitutes and drug
dealers, on Monday came to purge their sins at the annual Roman Catholic
festival of the black Christ, Panama's wildest and most chaotic celebration
Geller goes in search of a battle armed with psychic powers
by DAMIEN HENDERSON
"URI Geller, the celebrity psychic, will take to the sky above central
Scotland today in the hope that his paranormal powers will unearth one of
the country's most mysterious historical secrets."
Psychic 'solves' battle riddle
"Psychic Uri Geller is planning to take to the air to confirm his belief
that he has solved one of Scotland's greatest mysteries."
Clinton aide slams Pentagon's UFO secrecy
By Richard Stenger
"One winter night in 1965, eyewitnesses saw a fireball streak over North
America, bank, turn and appear to crash in western Pennsylvania. Then
swarms of military personnel combed the area and a tarp-covered flatbed
truck rumbled out of the woods."
Maybe we're not alone after all
By CATHY WOODRUFF
Albany Times Union
(See also http://www.fox23news.com/Global/story.asp?S=981962&nav=8ob8BwFt)
"Was it a terrorist missile, an off-course alien space craft or just a
zippy mosquito with a hearty autumn constitution? Local authorities hope
the FBI will know for sure."
Thames torso police seek fresh clues in Nigeria
"Detectives investigating the death of a five-year-old boy whose severed
torso was found in the River Thames last year, have arrived in Nigeria to
seek fresh clues in their inquiry, police said on Wednesday."
Ghostly goings-on at bridge
"Everyone knows horses are intelligent creatures but a farm owner from
Shropshire believes his animals have a spooky sixth sense."
'Ghost mystery' of accident black spot
"Villagers think a ghost could be to blame for a series of accidents on a
Serenade For A New York City Ghost
By Vera Haller
"Walk into the Merchants House Museum on East 4th Street and you are
transported back in time, to the genteel life of wealthy New York in the
If the truth is out there, Sci-Fi Channel wants to know
By Randy Cordova
"The Sci-Fi Channel has jumped into the UFO fray - for real this time."
Outing UFO Clues Good for Ratings
By Mark Baard
"On the face of it, Fox Mulder would be proud of a group of Washington
insiders who are throwing their weight behind the UFO movement."
UFOs: Seeking the Truth Through Savvy Marketing
By Leonard David
"Call it a conspiracy (or savvy marketing), but a new poll released this
week says a majority of Americans think the truth about unidentified flying
objects (UFOs) is out there, yet the government is concealing it from them."
Caught between a rock and hard place
By Gavin Phipps
"When Ho Hsien-jung and Lin Sheng-yi's startling publication, Taiwan -- The
Cradle of Civilization, hit bookstores last year neither of them expected
it to become a best-seller. They did, however, expect the book to be taken
more seriously in academic and governmental circles than it was."
Primeval terror (since 1929)
By Laura Miller
"Of all today's holidays, Halloween seems like the most primeval. Its bats,
witches, spooks, skeletons and monsters surely indicate roots reaching back
before the dawn of science and Christianity; the whiff of prehistoric
campfires clings to its sable robes. Well, guess again."
If These Walls Could Talk
by Jessica Yorama
Daily Egyptian [Southern Illinois University]
"A faded red book, "Southern Illinois University: A Pictorial History,"
tells the history of the campus through a series of black and white
photographs of distinguished, brick buildings."
Haunted Hangout of the Hereafter?
Alva Review Courier
"According to owner Nan Wheatley, Vina Rae's Grill & Graze Cafe located in
the old high school gymnasium at Avard should change its name to the Grill
& Ghosts because of mysterious sights and sounds occurring in the old
FG crop circle genuine, says scientist
By Lisa Waggoner
"A circle that cropped up in Lyle Spiesschaert's wheat field this summer is
the real deal, not a hoax, say a scientist and expert who specialize in
crop circle studies."
Some ghost stories may not be fictional
By Trina Trice
Clayton County News Daily
"Stories about things that go "boo" in the night aren't always purely make
By DON FARMER
Naples Daily News
""Call the real estate guy right now, 'cause we're selling this house!""
Local ghost hunters dare to make contact with things that go bump in the night
By KRISTIN DIZON
"Their T-shirts feature a headstone with the slogan, "Wanted dead, not
alive." They carry mysterious silver briefcases in the dark of night."
Radio Talk Show Host Bell to Retire
"Radio talk show host Art Bell, whose overnight talk of UFO sightings and
conspiracy theories made him famous, has announced his retirement."
Radio Legend Art Bell to Announce Retirement
By Sue Zeidler
"Radio host Art Bell, famed for his lengthy discussions on creepy
conspiracy theories, will announce his retirement on air in the wee hours
of Thursday, his syndicator Premiere Radio Networks Inc. said on Wednesday."
A tour of our most notorious haunted manors
By Rebecca K. Engmann
"One step beyond the appeal of visiting this country's sights is the thrill
of seeing its heritage of the unseen. The supernatural is a thriving
culture in Denmark, whose ancient history has borne plenty of restless
souls doomed to wander the halls and towers of tens of the country's
palaces and manors to the delight - and terror - of sceptical and
superstitious types alike."
'Girly Ghostbusters' probe paranormal
by COLIN HUNTER
"A warning to any ghouls or spirits prowling the creepy cemeteries and
mansions of the Waterloo Region: Ghostbusters are hot on your vaporous trails."
Being Skeptical Assists Psychic When Connecting
By TRACY RZEPKA
"John Edward is skeptical and he wants others to be the same."
Nice to Know A House Is Haunted
By Stephanie Cavanaugh
""'He' sat there in midair, smiling at me from in front of the cold
fireplace. Hands clasped around his crossed knees, he was nodding and
rocking. He faded slowly, still smiling and was gone. . . . He was the most
cheerful and solid-looking little person I'd ever seen.""
Ghost hunters develop camera to detect paranormal activity
"Michael Lynch doesn't live in the Twilight Zone, although he's spent
enough time there to pay taxes."
Shroud of Turin inspires study, skepticism, faith
By Mark Houser
"Despite several scientific tests that seem to show it is a forgery, the
Shroud of Turin still has the power to enthrall not only the devout, but
also a cadre of scientists who claim the debunkers are wrong."
Mysterious phenomena can disappear without an explanation
By Ramsey Campbell
"Some things are better left unexplained."
'Planet X' is a gift to doomsday buffs
By Michael Alicea
Palm Beach Post
"What is it about astronomy that draws cranks by the cartload? And why do
they delight in spewing bad-science-based doomsday scenarios and scaring
the bejabbers out of everyone?"
Halloween horrors! Beastly sightings part of Wisconsin lore
by Jim Lundstrom
"Little did Linda Godfrey know that a routine newspaper assignment in 1992
would become such a big part of her life."
Of soothsayers and skeptics
"Dust off the crystal ball, get the cards out and don't throw out the tea
leaves they might all prove useful."
Turn to Pravda for the real news
by David Grimes
"When American news gets too depressing, as it has lately with the sniper,
the pending war with Iraq and the apparent unavoidability of the next
election, I turn to Online Pravda to find out what's on the minds of our
good friends in Russia."
Owners: Spirits lurk in historic hotel
By GARY GOULD
"A local historian once told George Kutlenios, owner of the Holly Hotel,
that good things come to those who own the landmark building. In 1978, when
the restaurateur was struggling to rebuild and make the burned-out hotel
into a success, those words from long-time Holly resident Vera Cook Husted
Press reporter joins hunt for hotel ghost
By GARY GOULD
"Is the Holly Hotel haunted? Certainly people over the years - owners and
patrons alike - have experienced strange occurrences there."
Ghosts, monsters, unexplained phenomena, haunt state
By MELISSA NELSON
"Arkansas can be a pretty scary place, and not just during the week of
Meet the new Zionists
by Matthew Engel
The Guardian [UK]
"At first sight, the scene is very familiar: one that happens in Washington
DC and other major American cities all the time. On the platform, an
Israeli student is telling thousands of supporters how the horrors of the
year have only reinforced his people's determination. "Despite the terror
attacks, they'll never drive us away out of our God-given land," he says."
Horse attacks may be witchcraft
"Animal welfare experts say there may be a link between sporadic attacks on
horses and witchcraft."
Giant Pig Attacks Alaska
By JOSH PLOTNIK
Cornell Daily Sun
"Well, no one has actually called it a flying pig as of yet, but it might
as well be. Just like the poor Connecticut residents whose story I brought
to light when their neighborhoods were viciously bombarded by the cacophony
of Mister Softee ice cream trucks, the people of Alaska are in trouble."
'Miracle' water goes on trial
Australian Associated Press
"Water said to be empowered by alchemy and touted as a miracle cure is
under the spotlight of the NSW Supreme Court in a case described by one
silk as the new age on trial."
Is Mother Teresa's miracle a fake?
by Helen Rowe
Glasgow Sunday Herald
"The apparently miraculous recovery of a poor tribal woman from a stomach
tumour has divided India between those who believe it should be the basis
for Mother Teresa's canonisation and those who view it as an organised
fraud. Monica Besra, a West Bengali, claims she was cured after offering
prayers to Mother Teresa on the first anniversary of her death in 1998; the
Catholic church in the state says her cure satisfies the criteria for a
miracle because it was 'organic, permanent, and immediate'."
Anti-depressants have little more effect than placebos, claims study
By Julie Robotham
Sydney Morning Herald
"The mood-lifting effect of the most popular anti-depressants is barely
more than people experience when they take a dummy sugar pill, according to
analysis of secret pharmaceutical company trials."
Murder of 'cow killers' in India prompts much soul searching
by Luke Harding
The Guardian [UK]
"A Hindu religious leader has welcomed the murders of five men accused by a
mob of killing a cow, India's most sacred animal, claiming that the life of
the creature is more important than that of a human."
Witch thinks positive in bid to lure 'ghostly' Loch Ness monster
by John Ross
"AMERICAN scientists used millions of pounds of equipment and mini
submarines. Screaming Lord Sutch used a haggis and a sandwich. But none of
these heroic efforts yielded firm proof of the existence of the Loch Ness
Researchers are in Bullhead City to investigate alleged bigfoot sighting
Mohave Daily News
"Knowledge is of two kinds. We know a subject ourselves,
or we know where we can find information upon it."
- Samuel Johnson