Saturday, February 05, 2011

Fads and Fallacies

On the recommendation of the bad science Blog, I got a copy of "Fads and Fallacies" by Martin Gardner. This is a great book that "debunks" a large number of pseudoscience fads. The book was first published in the early 50s, but many of the fads are still with us (mostly because people can still make money from them).

Some of the topics covered are: ESP, Dianetics, dowsing, Atlantis, and various food fads. Some things I have met, such as training the eyes so that you can see without glasses. Gardner is actualy fairly sympathetic to the attempts to test for ESP.

I really wish Prince Charles would read this book, but he is a lost cause to rationality. In the past I have taken a relaxed attitude to strange beliefs. People can believe what they want. However people are making a lot of money out of selling pills and potions.

I do "admire" some of the stranger beleifs, such as the Earth is flat or hollow.