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Rationally Speaking is the official podcast of New York City Skeptics. Join Julia Galef and guests as they explore the borderlands between reason and nonsense, likely and unlikely, science and pseudoscience. Rationally Speaking was co-created with Massimo Pigliucci, is produced by Benny Pollak and recorded in the heart of Greenwich Village.

Current Episodes


Sunday
Dec102017

RS 198 - Timur Kuran on “Private Truths and Public Lies"

Release date: December 10th, 2017

Timur Kuran

In this episode, economist Timur Kuran explains the ubiquitous phenomenon of "preference falsification" -- in which people claim to support something publicly even though they don't support it privately -- and describes its harmful effects on society. He and Julia explore questions like: Is preference falsification all bad? Are there ways to reduce it? And how much has the Internet changed the dynamics around preference falsification?

Timur's Book: "Private Truths, Public Lies"

Timur's Pick: "Micromotives and Macrobehavior" by Thomas C. Schelling

Edited by Brent Silk

Music by Miracles of Modern Science

 

Full Transcripts 

Friday
Nov242017

Happy Thanksgiving!

Happy Thanksgiving to all our listeners! Rationally Speaking will be on vacation this weekend, but we will return with a fresh episode on December 10th.

Sunday
Nov122017

RS 197 - Doug Hubbard on “Why people think some things can’t be quantified (and why they’re wrong)”

Release date: November 12th, 2017

Doug Hubbard

In this episode Julia talks with Doug Hubbard, author of "How to Measure Anything," about why people so often believe things are impossible to quantify like "innovation" or "quality of life." For example, because people often have a deep misunderstanding of the meaning of probability. Or because they're reluctant to violate "sacred taboos" by putting a number on something like the value of human life. Or because it feels vulgar to "reduce" important things to a number. Doug explains how he responds to these objections and others.

Doug's Pick: "Innumeracy" by John Allen Paulos

Doug's 2nd Pick: "Decision Traps" by J. Edward Russo and Paul J.H. Shoemaker

Doug's Book: "How to Meassure Anything"

Edited by Brent Silk

Music by Miracles of Modern Science

 

Full Transcripts