Archive for June, 2014

Be Reasonable – Episode #018: Rafael Dellal

In this month’s episode we’re joined by psychic Rafael Dellal. Rafael, a clairvoyant and medium, spoke to us about his work, the tools used by mediums, how to spot a real medium from a fake medium and the ethics of psychic readings.

Regular listeners will note that Hayley Stevens is no longer involved with Be Reasonable – Hayley has left the show, having decided to take a break from podcasting completely. We thank Hayley for all the excellent work she’s done with the show and wish her all the best. Marsh will be taking the show forward alone.

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Skeptics with a K: Episode #124

Godless babies, topical caffeine, aluminium discs and software for your brain. Plus the old bait-and-switch, Radiohead and reset buttons. As they mend the road behind us, it’s Skeptics with a K.

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Skeptics with a K: Episode #123

Featuring biscuits, stem cells, tempting your ex and maps of New York. Plus acid, fraud, computer generated planes and fluorescence. Masturbating the hypothalamus, it’s Skeptics with a K.

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Be Reasonable: Episode #017 – Richard Freeman

This month, we chat to Richard Freeman.  Richard is the zoological director of the Centre for Fortean Zoology. He talks to Hayley and Marsh about cryptozoology and why he thinks there’s much more to monsters than just Nessie and Bigfoot…

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The Angels of Mons: a legend of the Great War – by Dr Dave Clarke

When: Thursday, May 15th, 2014, 8.00 PM

‘…the greatest wartime mystery of the 20th century…’ A.J.P. Taylor

One hundred years ago, in August 1914, a force of 30,000 crack British troops were surrounded outside the Belgian city of Mons by a massive German Army three times as strong. But at the very moment they expected to be annihilated the attack was suddenly halted, allowing the troops to escape and fight another day.

Back home, newspapers attributed the escape of the British Expeditionary Force to “a miracle” and many Christians came to believe that the Germans had been stopped by a vision of angels that appeared between them and the BEF. And as the war bogged down in the trenches wounded soldiers and nurses who cared for them came forward to claim they had witnessed the miracle at Mons. 

The Angels of Mons captured the imagination of thousands across the world, bringing hope of victory to the Allies and restoring faith to those who lost loved ones in the slaughter on the Western Front. As the centenary of the legend approaches the story lives on with plans for a battle of Mons trail and commemorative events to mark the beginning and end of the war in the Belgian city.
In this talk David Clarke – author of the definitive book on the mystery (The Angel of Mons, Wiley: 2004) – sets out to reveal the facts behind the story, drawing upon original documents and accounts from journalists who collected stories about the ‘angels’.
The talk follows the evolution of the story to the present day and asks if it really was ‘the first example of a modern urban legend’.

Dr David Clarke is an expert on folklore and supernatural beliefs. He is a senior lecturer in the Department of Journalism at Sheffield Hallam University. From 2008-2013 he worked as The National Archives consultant for the opening of the Ministry of Defence’s UFO files. His book The UFO Files (Bloomsbury 2012) is the first comprehensive history of the MoD’s UFO investigations. His website is dedicated to folklore and journalism: http://www.drdavidclarke.co.uk/

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Why Haven’t We Cured Cancer Yet? Debunking the Conspiracies – by Dr Vicky Forster

When: Thursday, March 20th, 2014, 8.00 PM

Millions of pounds is poured into cancer research and drug development every year and although cure rates for many forms of cancer have improved dramatically in the last fifty years, some remain exceptionally hard to treat. An increasing number of passionate cancer conspiracy theorists claiming that ‘the cure’ has already been found and is being suppressed and that unproven alternative therapies are better than conventional therapies, are threatening the health of cancer patients and the reputation of cancer charities, doctors and researchers.

This talk will aim to address misunderstandings about the basic biology of cancer, look for any evidence behind the most popular touted ‘alternative cancer therapies’ and hopes to stimulate discussion as to why there are a growing number of people who believe in these largely-unfounded conspiracies.

Dr. Vicky Forster is a cancer research scientist at Newcastle University, and a survivor of childhood cancer. She is also passionate blogger for a large cancer charity and tweets a lot about her own work and demanding evidence for alternative cancer treatments and therapies.

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