EP 66: Debunking Conspiracy Theories w/ Dr. Michael Shermer, Editor of Skeptic Magazine
On this episode, we tackle that special breed of whacko known as the conspiracy theorist. You've probably encountered them at a cocktail party or on your social media. They're the ones who are always carrying on about the JFK assassination or Obama's birth certificate and they say things like "that's exactly what THEY want you to believe" or "you have to connect the dots." The problem is that in most instances they're connecting "dots" that aren't there and fueling ignorance, irrationality and paranoia.
My guest today is an expert at dispelling such nonsense. He's Dr. Michael Shermer, founder & publisher of Skeptic Magazine. He also writes a monthly column for Scientific American and he's published 14 books about debunking conspiracy theories, the paranormal and pseudoscience including his newest book SKEPTIC: VIEWING THE WORLD WITH A RATIONAL EYE.
Today Dr. Michael Shermer will talk about the type of person who falls for conspiracy theories, the psychology behind conspiracy beliefs, how media figures like Alex Jones and Jesse Ventura are willing accomplices to the spreading ignorance and paranoia, and the danger of conspiratorial thinking infecting our politics. Plus he'll debunk popular conspiracies surrounding the JFK assassination, 9/11, the moon landing, vaccinations, Area 51, the death of Princess Diana, secret societies, the Denver Airport, the Sandy Hook massacre, Elvis, Obama's birth certificate, and much more.
If you enjoyed this episode, then you can follow Dr. Michael Shermer on Twitter at @michaelshermer or at www.michaelshermer.com. You can also learn more, subscribe to Skeptic Magazine and even join the Skeptic Society by visiting www.skeptic.com. You can order SKEPTIC: VIEWING THE WORLD WITH A RATIONAL EYE or any of Dr. Michael Shermer's books on Amazon.