Point of Inquiry

Point of Inquiry is the Center for Inquiry's flagship podcast, where the brightest minds of our time sound off on all the things you're not supposed to talk about at the dinner table: science, religion, and politics. Guests have included Brian Greene, Susan Jacoby, Richard Dawkins, Ann Druyan, Neil deGrasse Tyson, Eugenie Scott, Adam Savage, Bill Nye, and Francis Collins. Point of Inquiry is produced at the Center for Inquiry in Amherst, N.Y.

http://www.pointofinquiry.org

subscribe
share


 
 

recommended podcasts


      Elizabeth Kolbert on Coming to Grips with a Warming Planet


      We want to believe that climate change can be stopped, that humanity can summon the political will to take decisive and meaningful action to avert disaster and save civilization. But the difficult reality is that even if we make our very best efforts to rein in greenhouse gas emissions, climate change is coming. The real question now is how bad are we going to allow it to get?

      There is perhaps no one better suited to discuss humanity’s unwitting impact on the planet than this...


      share





      48m
       

      Carl Pope on Trump, Paris, and the Climate: We’re Going to Be Okay


      On June 1, President Donald Trump declared that he was withdrawing the United States from the Paris climate accord, an international agreement meant to significantly reduce greenhouse gas emissions and limit the global average temperature increase to no more than 2 degrees Celsius. For those who accept the reality of the threat posed by climate change, the news has sparked a good deal of anger, outrage, and not a small amount of despair for the fate of our planet. 

        Despair...


      share





      30m
       

      Show Update - Get Ready for Point of Inquiry: The Next Generation


      Don’t touch that podcast!

      Yes, Lindsay Beyerstein and Josh Zepps have moved on to new endeavors, but a new chapter for Point of Inquiry is about to begin, with new hosts and a new format.

      In this quick update the hosts-to-be will tell us a little bit about themselves and preview what they have planned for Point of Inquiry’s new direction.

      So stay subscribed to Point of Inquiry in your...


      share





      5m
       2017-05-03

      Is Anybody Listening? Jill Tarter on the Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence


      Jill Tarter holds the Bernard M. Oliver Chair for SETI (Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence) at the SETI Institute in Mountain View, CA where she also served as the former director of the Center for SETI Research. She was also a Project Scientist for NASA’s SETI program and has conducted a number of observational programs at radio observatories worldwide. Since funding for NASA’s SETI program was cut in 1993, she has worked to secure private funding so that SETI may continue to...


      share





      48m
       2017-04-24

      Sarah Posner: How Trump Got His Hands on the Religious Right


      How did a man living an ostensibly godless, hedonistic life become the champion of the very groups who one would expect to denounce his behavior? Being a real estate mogul and reality TV star, it’s no secret to anyone that President Trump has spent far more time in country clubs than churches. A man who’s had several wives, owned casinos and bars, and had multiple accusations of sexual assault leveled against him is hardly the pinnacle of virtue the religious right professes to...


      share





      30m
       2017-04-11

      Paul Offit: The Fate of Science in an Age of Darkness


      While science was once the force that propelled humanity into an age of enlightenment, a pernicious fear of science and the unknown threatens to plunge society to into an age of darkness. So says Dr. Paul Offit, a groundbreaking immunologist, and a Fellow of the Committee for Skeptical Inquiry. Offit’s new book, Pandora’s Lab: Seven Stories of Science Gone Wrong, comes at a time when the fundamental concepts of evidence, facts, and truth itself are being smothered by a...


      share





      40m
       2017-04-04

      Phoebe Maltz Bovy: Check Your Privilege-Checking 


       

      Often when we talk about privilege, we’re referring to the systemic advantages some groups of people have over others, by virtue of their race, gender, or orientation. Having social awareness of privilege like this is an important part of fostering a more equal and inclusive society. Why then do people who value inclusiveness feel insulted when their own privilege is pointed out? Writer and editor Phoebe Maltz Bovy joins us to discus her new book, The Perils of...


      share





      26m
       2017-03-28

      Mile-High Violence: Judith Matloff on Mountain Conflict


      People living at mountainous high altitudes account for only 10 percent of the world’s population, spread out over roughly 25 percent of the Earth’s surface, and yet they also are responsible for a huge portion of the world’s most violent and persistent conflicts. The reason for this correlation between altitude and violence isn’t entirely understood, but there are several factors contributing to the effect the geography of mountain living undoubtedly plays in conflict....


      share





      38m
       2017-03-20

      Tweaking the Travel Ban: Dahlia Lithwick on Trump’s Revised Executive Order


      President Trump’s travel ban aimed at select Muslim-majority countries (with exceptions for Christian minorities) was first framed this past January as an urgent action to protect the nation from the imminent danger of foreign terror attacks. With airports in disarray over the unprompted and unclear executive order, the directive was quickly taken to court, and it became clear that Trump’s dire warnings about national security threats were lacking one very important thing: evidence....


      share





      26m
       2017-03-14

      Lawrence Krauss: Accidental Origins


      Fate. Purpose. Design. These are words that hang over many of our heads as we navigate the everyday chaos of life. Religion is often given exclusive purview over the discourse surrounding these concepts, but what if science was able to answer some of these same deep existential questions? We may not always like the answers that science has to give us.

       

      Laurence Krauss is a theoretical physicist, cosmologist, professor, author, and science...


      share





      30m
       2017-03-06