Episode 154: New Religious Movements

Lauren hosts and Laura edits on this topsy-turvy episode of Life, the Universe & Everything Else! The gang discusses New Religious Movements: Lauren relates their experience with Discordianism, Laura is over the moon for the Moonies, Gem expresses his disgust for the Internet’s own Cult of Kek, and Ashlyn provides a primer on Pastafarianism. Then the panelists end the show with some fun ways to pass the time under COVID-19 lockdown.

Life, the Universe & Everything Else is a podcast that delves into issues of science, critical thinking, and secular humanism.

New Religious Movements: New religious movement (Wikipedia) | Is Theosophy a Religion? (Wikipedia) | Academic study of new religious movements (Wikipedia) | Cult (Wikipedia) | Sociological classifications of religious movements (Wikipedia) | Theosophy and visual arts (Wikipedia) | List of new religious movements (Wikipedia) | Charismatic authority (Wikipedia) | Discordianism (Wikipedia) | Sect (Wikipedia) | Communitarianism (Wikipedia)

The Unification Church: Unification movement (Wikipedia) | Former member of the Unification Church describes life in a cult (Insider) | The Fall of the House of Moon (The New Republic) | The cultlike church behind a ceremony with AR-15s and bullet crowns, explained (Vox) | The Unification Church (ReligiousTolerance.org)

The Cult of Kek: Cult of Kek (Know Your Meme) | Savitri Devi: The strange story of how a Hindu Hitler worshipper became an alt-right icon (International Business Times) | Savitri Devi: The Woman Who Turned Nazism into a Religion: Part One, Part Two (Behind the Bastards) | Pepe the Frog (RationalWiki) | Pepe the Frog (Wikipedia) | Kek (mythology) (Wikipedia) | Western esotericism (Wikipedia) | Esoteric Nazism (Wikipedia) | Laughter Sounds in Korean (TalkToMeInKorean)

Pastafarianism: Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster | Pasta strainers and pirates: how the Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster was born (The Guardian) | Flying Spaghetti Monster Wiki | Flying Spaghetti Monster (Wikipedia)

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Bonus Episode: One Hundred Proofs

On this episode of Life, the Universe & Everything Else, Gem presents Laura with a dozen or so of William Carpenter’s One Hundred Proofs That the Earth Is Not a Globe. She is… unconvinced.

Life, the Universe & Everything Else is a podcast that delves into issues of science, critical thinking, and secular humanism.

Links: One Hundred Proofs That the Earth Is Not a Globe, by William Carpenter (Project Gutenberg) | William Carpenter (Wikipedia) | Samuel Rowbotham (Wikipedia) | Flat Earth OR Why Do People Reject Science? (Philosophy Tube) | Flat Earth: A Measured Response (Hbomberguy)

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Episode 147: More Conspiracies!

On this episode of Life, the Universe & Everything Else, Ashlyn, Lauren, Laura, and Gem get conspiratorial! Lauren gives everyone the rundown on QAnon, Laura presents three food-related conspiracies, and Ashlyn explains why the Denver Airport is full of weird (but probably not Satanic) art.

Life, the Universe & Everything Else is a podcast that delves into issues of science, critical thinking, and secular humanism.

Additional Music: Dark Things, by Eric Matyas

Note: Unfortunately, Gem’s segment was lost to a technical catastrophe, but look for a special bonus episode next week focused on the Flat Earth conspiracy!

QAnon: QAnon (Wikipedia) | What is QAnon? Explaining the bizarre rightwing conspiracy theory (The Guardian) | QAnon (RationalWiki) | Apophenia (RationalWiki) | Crank magnetism (RationalWiki) | New gematria (RationalWiki) | QAnon map dissection (RationalWiki) | Murder of Seth Rich (Wikipedia) | Q clearance (Wikipedia)

Food Conspiracies: Chipotle conspiracy theory gains steam (Business Insider) | Outback Steakhouse at the Center of Bizarre Conspiracy Theory (Huffington Post) | #575: The Fondue Conspiracy (NPR) | Swiss Cheese Union (Wikipedia) | The Swiss Cheese Mafia (Thinkgrowth.org)

The Denver Airport Conspiracy: Denver International Airport (Wikipedia) | Denver Airport conspiracy theories (RationalWiki) | 8 Conspiracy Theories About The Denver Airport That’ll Freak You Out | Denver Airport Conspiracy: Theories, Rumors & Facts (Thrillist)

Walt Disney Licensing: The Wonderful World of Disney’s Other Firm (LA Times)

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Episode 145: “Behind the Curve”

On this episode of Life, the Universe & Everything Else, Ashlyn, Lauren, Gem, and Laura watch the Netflix documentary “Behind the Curve”, which follows a group of “flerfers” out to prove that the Earth is flat.

Life, the Universe & Everything Else is a podcast that delves into issues of science, critical thinking, and secular humanism.

Why Aren’t Plants Black?: Why aren’t plants black? (PBS Digital Studios)

Behind the Curve: Behind the Curve (Wikipedia) | Behind the Curve (IMDb)

Flat Earth: Flat Earth: A Measured Response (Hbomberguy) | Flat Earth OR Why Do People Reject Science? (Philosophy Tube) | Ross and Carrie Traverse Flat Earth, Part 1 (Oh No Ross and Carrie) | The Flat Earth Wiki

What Have You Been Enjoying Lately?: Alice Isn’t Dead (Night Vale Presents) | Outer Wilds | Ask a Manager | Captain Awkward | The Nightrunner Series (Wikipedia) | Nancy (WNYC) | Begonia | Gastropod (Food with a Side of Science & History) | Sigma Nutrition | The Double Shift

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Episode 131: “Mermaids: The Body Found”

On this episode of Life, the Universe & Everything Else, Ashlyn subjects Lauren, Laura, and Dave to “Mermaids: The Body Found”, a fake documentary that aired on Animal Plant and Discovery Channel in 2012, which combines discredited pseudoscience with stuff that the producers just made up.

Life, the Universe & Everything Else is a podcast that delves into issues of science, critical thinking, and secular humanism.

Links: Mermaids: The Body Found (Wikipedia) | Mermaids: The Body Found (Snopes) | Aquatic ape hypothesis (Wikipedia) | Bloop (Wikipedia) | Cave of Swimmers (Wikipedia)

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Episode 129: The Olympics

On this episode of Life, the Universe & Everything Else, Ashlyn, Lauren, and Laura discuss some of the myths and scandals surrounding the Olympic Games.

Life, the Universe & Everything Else is a podcast that delves into issues of science, critical thinking, and secular humanism.

Links: North Korea at the Olympics (Wikipedia) | Olympics and their economic impact: Updated research roundup (Journalist's Resource) | Costs and benefits of hosting the Olympics (Economics Help) | The Economics of Hosting the Olympic Games (Council on Foreign Relations) | Cultural Impacts of Hosting the Olympics (Aperian Global) | List of bids for the Summer Olympics (Wikipedia) | The Life and Murder of Stella Walsh, Intersex Olympic Champion (Longreads.com) | A Brief History of Sexism in TV Coverage of the Olympics (The Atlantic) | Caster Semenya (Wikipedia) | Pierre de Coubertin (Wikipedia) | First modern Olympics is held – Apr 06, 1896 (HISTORY.com) | Larry Nassar sentenced to 175 years in prison (Daily Mail Online) | Former U.S. gymnastics doctor sentenced 40 to 175 years in sex assault case (CBC) | Russian Olympic official says doping whistleblower should be executed (The Guardian) | Russia Is Barred From Winter Olympics. Russia Is Sending 169 Athletes to Winter Olympics. (The New York Times) | Ross Rebagliati (Wikipedia) | List of stripped Olympic medals (Wikipedia) | Doping in Russia (Wikipedia) | Russia ban decision was ‘a balance,’ says IOC chief Bach (Reuters) | Russia banned from Winter Olympics over state-sponsored doping (The Guardian) | How Bryan Fogel Documented Russia’s Olympic Doping Scandal (Vulture) | Gymnastics scandal: 8 times Larry Nassar could have been stopped (NBC News) | What Is The 2016 Olympic Beach Volleyball Dress Code? Here’s How The Rules Have Changed (Bustle) | 2002 Winter Olympics figure skating scandal (Wikipedia) | The day scandal sliced Olympic ice (TheSpec.com) | U.S. Figure Skating denies French report of collusion between U.S. and Russian judges (Yahoo!) | Figure Skating Dances Around Questionable Judging (The Washington Post) | Olympic Judging: Fair or Biased? (Minitab ) | How ski jumping gets Olympic judging right (The Washington Post) | Finding Flaws in Figure Skating (Seed Magazine) | Skating insiders question Sochi judging (USA Today) | Russian Charged with Olympic Figure Skating Fix (CBC) | Controversial decisions lead to suspension of boxing judges (LA Times) | Judging scandal still haunts Korean Yang (Reuters)

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Episode 128: Real Conspiracies

On this episode of Life, the Universe & Everything Else, Gem, Ashlyn, Laura, and Lauren talk about real conspiracies and cover-ups perpetrated by corporations and the government.

Life, the Universe & Everything Else is a podcast that delves into issues of science, critical thinking, and secular humanism.

Links: Lack of fluoride in Calgary drinking water leads to rise in tooth decay (CBC) | Unfiltered Fervor: The Rush to Get Off the Water Grid (The New York Times) | Google and Apple Settle Class-Action Lawsuit Alleging Wage Fixing (Time) | AllTrials | Tuskegee syphilis experiment (Wikipedia)

Iran–Contra: The Iran-Contra Affair (PBS) | Understanding the Iran-Contra Affairs | Iran–Contra affair (Wikipedia)

MKUltra: Project MKUltra (Wikipedia) | When the CIA ran a LSD sex-house in San Francisco (San Francisco Chronicle) | One of the Most Shocking CIA Programs of All Time: Project MKUltra | Sidney Gottlieb (Wikipedia) | CIA’s MK-Ultra LSD mind control experiment has lingering legacy (Washington Times)

COINTELPRO: What the JFK files say about Martin Luther King Jr. (The Washington Post) | What an Uncensored Letter to M.L.K. Reveals (The New York Times) | Martin Luther King Jr. (Wikipedia) | FBI–King suicide letter (Wikipedia) | The Uncompromising Anti-Capitalism of Martin Luther King Jr. (The Huffington Post)

The Smoking–Cancer Connection: Lung Cancer and Smoking: What We Really Know (The Atlantic) | The history of the discovery of the cigarette–lung cancer link (BMJ) | The Cigarette Controversy (Cancer Epidemiology)

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