197 episodes

An evidence based rational viewpoint and discussion on science and society, focusing on important current issues. I hope to provide a clear voice for the quiet moderate majority on highly polarized issues such as climate change, social inequity, and the growth of anti-science sentiment. #therationalview #science #tok #evidencebased #climatechange

The Rational View podcast with Dr. Al Scott Al Scott

    • Society & Culture
    • 4.9 • 16 Ratings

An evidence based rational viewpoint and discussion on science and society, focusing on important current issues. I hope to provide a clear voice for the quiet moderate majority on highly polarized issues such as climate change, social inequity, and the growth of anti-science sentiment. #therationalview #science #tok #evidencebased #climatechange

    Mr. Anderson shares secrets on how to effectively debate Creationists

    Mr. Anderson shares secrets on how to effectively debate Creationists

    In this episode I will be talking more about how to debate Creationists. I have taken this topic on in the past, in my original episode on how to debate Creationists, and I have also interviewed well known evolutionary scientist Dr. Niles Eldredge who was one of the founders of the Punctuated Equilibrium theory of evolution alongside Stephen J. Gould.  Today I will be interviewing someone who I saw debating Kent Hovind a leading Young Earth Creationist.  The debate was not what one comes to expect from these affairs and was more like a courtroom interrogation than the usual grandstanding and Gish Galloping that one might expect from a Creationist debate. Let’s see if we can all learn something.
    Mr. Anderson is a practicing Canadian lawyer who focuses on litigation.  Having spent years in and out of the courtroom cross-examining witnesses and analyzing arguments, he has recently turned his talents on proponents of pseudoscience and dogmatic thinking on the internet.
    He is most well known for his attacks on creationists such as Kent Hovind, and has recently started a YouTube channel where he breaks down the techniques he uses to force evasive and pugnacious individuals to come to grips with facts and arguments that they would prefer to ignore. 
    His style, for those of you who have never seen his videos, is very reminiscent of a cross examination, so his debates look very different from what you are likely used to seeing online, and he joins us here today.
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    • 48 min
    Dr. David Green says we don't need UBI for a more just society

    Dr. David Green says we don't need UBI for a more just society

    In this episode I’m continuing my investigation into Universal Basic Income as the natural solution to the AI and robotics revolution. One day we should be able to work because we want to improve the world and our situations, and not do it because we are under risk of death. The problem is that the intermediate period between having all of our needs taken care of by our robotic assistants, and having to compete with them for wages to put food on the table is not at all a clear path. My guest today chaired a committee that investigated UBI as an option for the BC government.  Their conclusion was that augmenting current social programs would be a better approach. It’s time for The Rational View.
    David Green is a professor in the Vancouver School of Economics at UBC. His areas of research interest include income inequality, immigration, the impact of technical change on the labour market, and labour market policies. He is a former editor of the Canadian Journal of Economics and an International Research Associate with the Institute for Fiscal Studies in London. He has served on the editorial boards for the American Economic Review and the Journal of Political Economy. His work has been published in leading journals, including Econometrica, the American Economic Review, and the Review of Economic Studies. He was also a member of the BC Expert Panel on Basic Income and has served as the President of the Canadian Economics Association.
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    • 57 min
    The science of learning with Scott H. Young

    The science of learning with Scott H. Young

    In this episode I’m going to be exploring the science behind learning with an author who has been exploring this topic for almost 20 years. How do we learn, and reason, how can we be more rational, and what can we do to make learning easier?
    Scott H. Young is the Wall Street Journal bestselling author of Ultralearning, a podcast host, computer programmer, and an avid reader. Since 2006, he has published weekly essays to help people learn and think better. His work has been featured in the New York Times, Pocket, and Business Insider, on the BBC, and at TEDx among other outlets. He doesn’t promise to have all the answers, just a place to start. He lives in Vancouver, Canada.
    Support the podcast at patron.podbean.com/TheRationalView
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    • 51 min
    Dr. Ben Heard on environmental advocacy in a polarized world

    Dr. Ben Heard on environmental advocacy in a polarized world

    In this repeat episode I chat with Dr. Ben Heard about environmental advocacy and communicating science-based viewpoints in a polarised debate. Dr. Heard provides his assessment on the rationality of the anti-nuclear lobby.
    Dr. Ben Heard is recognised as a leading voice for the use of nuclear technologies to address our most pressing global challenges.
    It certainly didn’t start that way.
    Back in the day he was a member of environmental NGOs and shared their basic objection to nuclear technologies. After completing a Masters in Sustainability he started working in major projects in climate change. But there was just no solution on offer to match the scale of the problems at hand. So instead of continuing his objection to nuclear technology he shut his damn mouth about it for a couple of years and did some learning. That was the start of pathway of writing, presenting, advocating and ever more learning about how we can reinvent the future using all our knowledge and ingenuity. 
    Ben was awarded his doctorate from the University of Adelaide in 2018, where he examined clean energy supply with a focus on nuclear technologies. He has presented his research findings at conferences around Australia and the world. He founded Bright New World in 2016 to provide a new organisation for people who want pragmatic, compassionate, and science-based environmentalism, in particular that values the role of nuclear technologies. 
    Ben lives in Adelaide, South Australia where he works in the private sector on energy and asset performance projects. He features as one of the global voices in the documentary Juice: How Electricity Explains the World.
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    • 56 min
    Dr. Janet Tulloch asks if The Big Bang is just another origin story (re-release)

    Dr. Janet Tulloch asks if The Big Bang is just another origin story (re-release)

    In this re-released episode I interview religious studies scholar Dr. Janet Tulloch to discuss the Big Bang, and other origin stories. Let's go explore where science and religion collide. I hope you find it an interesting journey!
    Janet Tulloch is an adjunct research professor in the College of Humanities at Carleton University in Ottawa. She is a cultural historian with a PhD in Religious Studies. She is also a member of the Ottawa centre of the Royal Astronomical Society of Canada. She was the recipient of two awards from RASC-Ottawa one for her writing about ancient religions and their connection to the night sky and one for her interpretation of the night sky through visual art.
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    • 42 min
    David Moscrop says we shouldn't fund Catholic schools

    David Moscrop says we shouldn't fund Catholic schools

    In this episode I’m looking into a particular issue of government waste. Specifically I’d like to dig into the funding of religious schools in Ontario. Is this a good investment for society, or a ruinous subsidy to a single religious minority? This is a polarizing issue in Ontario that has been too hot to handle for politicians.  The last time a political party in Ontario sought to propose a change to the system (John Tory’s conservative party proposed in the 2007 election to fund all religious schools) their party was hung out to dry by the voters.  Proponents of the special status for Catholic schools note that funding of their particular religion is enshrined in Canada’s constitution. Section 93 of the Constitution Act, 1867, protects the Catholic school system. Opponents note that Ontario is the only province that funds just one type of religious school.  Let’s get the facts. My guest today has published articles calling for the Abolition of publicly funded Catholic school system in Ontario.
    David Moscrop is a columnist and the author of Too Dumb for Democracy? Why We Make Bad Political Decisions and How We Can Make Better Ones. He is a political commentator for television, radio, and print media. He is also the host of Open To Debate, a current affairs podcast, and Left Looking In with CUPE Local 416. He holds a PhD in political science from the University of British Columbia.
    Support the podcast at patron.podbean.com/TheRationalView
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    • 53 min

Customer Reviews

4.9 out of 5
16 Ratings

16 Ratings

ethrop ,

Level headed and informative

Love Dr. Al’s calm and incisive exchanges with many guiding lights (and some misguiding prophets!). One of the best progressive supporters of rational energy policy in Canada.

Gordon McDowell ,

Well conducted interviews.

Straightforward and engaging conversations on surprising-to-me wide variety of topics. As a Canadian wondering what-is-up with Canadian Greens and nuclear power, Al Scott's interviews have been bang-on.

Tweakypuppy ,

A refreshing take

More than a rational view but a refreshing take. Forces you to think about the things that are going on with a scientific look. Love the show

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