SGU Episode 797

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SGU Episode 797
October 17th 2020
(brief caption for the episode icon)

SGU 796                      SGU 798

Skeptical Rogues
S: Steven Novella

B: Bob Novella

C: Cara Santa Maria

J: Jay Novella

E: Evan Bernstein


BW: Brian Wecht

PT: Paul Thibado[1]

Quote of the Week

All models are wrong, but some are useful.

George Box, British statistician

Download Podcast
Show Notes
Forum Discussion


Voiceover: You're listening to the Skeptics' Guide to the Universe, your escape to reality.

COVID-19 Update ()

News Items






(laughs) (laughter) (applause) [inaudible]

Excess Deaths from Pandemic ()

When Satellites Collide ()

Humans Evolving Extra Blood Vessel ()

Who's That Noisy? ()

  • Answer to last week’s Noisy: _brief_description_perhaps_with_link_

New Noisy ()


Interview with Paul Thibado ()

Questions/Emails/Corrections/Follow-ups ()

Email #1: Time ()

(Transcriptionist's note: We normally lightly edit the text of original emails, but given this one's general kookiness, we're leaving it unedited.)

I send this information to journalists/editors worldwide and I hope that you will share it as well, the students/public/governments don't realize that millions of physicists are fooling humanity. The Nobel Prize in Physics 2020 is the second Nobel Prize in Physics for something that cannot exist (gravitational wave and a massive black hole), and that is a disgrace. Even a layman can see that the following is correct, nobody will be able to refute this. I can claim that gravity affects you because I can see or detect you, because I know what you are, because I know that you exist. If I cannot see or detect you then I cannot claim that gravity affects you, that claim would be a lie. Physicists cannot see or detect time, they don't know what time is, and that means that they don't even know if time exists. So physicists must not claim that gravity affects time, that is a lie. Millions of physicists/astronomers claim that spacetime is a merger of space and time while they don't even know what time is, so can physicists explain and prove what time is? (NO). Look around you, milions of physicists know that they cannot see or detect time. So they cannot know what time is and they cannot know if time exists, and that means that physicists must not claim that time dilates or that spacetime exists. Many theories and millions of papers are incorrect if time doesn't dilate and if spacetime doesn't exist, and a lot of research is based on those incorrect/fraudulent papers. Einstein didn't know what time was, he used clocktime and that is not real. Physicists claim that many experiments prove that time dilates, but that is impossible if they don't know what time is. When a clock runs faster in an experiment then physicists claim that time dilates, but when I ask them if time stops if I remove the battery during that experiment then they are silent. They realize that a clock doesn't represent real time, a clock represents non-real time. So theories like Einstein's theory of gravity and general/special relativity (including E=mc2), time dilation, spacetime, GRAVITATIONAL WAVES, MASSIVE BLACK HOLES, string theory, dark matter, etc are incorrect if time doesn't dilate and if spacetime doesn't exist, a lot of research and education is based on incorrect/fraudulent theories (for more than 100 years). Investigate my claim, it only takes one simple question. Ask physicists if they can explain and prove what time is, that is impossible because they cannot detect time. Millions of physicists are lying because they act as if they know what time is, but they lie because they were brainwashed with fraudulent claims/theories when they were a student. So it's important that physicists admit that they don't know what time is for the sake of the students and humanity, they need to break that devastating vicious circle. Physicists/universities/institutes purposely ignore me, they are silent because the truth undermines their interests but their silence undermines the interests of humanity. Don't fool yourself, nobody knows what time is.

– Best regards, Peter Raktoe

Email #2: Traffic ()

I am a traffic engineer and love your podcast. Listening to your last podcast regarding electric cars, the impact of traffic on climate change, and the possible use of loan cars as part of the solution made me cringe a bit, especially the optimistic view of self drive and the timeframe of these vehicles being widely used. I suggest you do a deep dive into the world of traffic, as I think you will be surprised and find it quite interesting.

– Wayne Amos Mackay, Queensland, Australia

Science or Fiction ()

Answer Item
Fiction Cruising for parking
Science Increasing road capacity
Self-driving car service
Host Result
Steve win
Rogue Guess
Cruising for parking
Cruising for parking
Cruising for parking
Self-driving car service
Cruising for parking

Voiceover: It's time for Science or Fiction.

Theme: Traffic
Item #1: Careful examination of traffic patterns reveals that, on average, 30% of all traffic in New York City is cruising for a parking space.[6]
Item #2: Multiple studies indicate that increasing road capacity does not reduce traffic in the long run and in some cases may worsen it.[7]
Item #3: Research shows that self-driving cars as a service would significantly increase traffic congestion.[8]

Brian's Response

Jay's Response

Cara's Response

Bob's Response

Evan's Response

Steve Explains Item #2

Steve Explains Item #1

Steve Explains Item #3

Skeptical Quote of the Week ()

All models are wrong, but some are useful.
George Box (1919-2013), British statistician

Signoff/Announcements ()

S: —and until next week, this is your Skeptics' Guide to the Universe.

S: Skeptics' Guide to the Universe is produced by SGU Productions, dedicated to promoting science and critical thinking. For more information, visit us at Send your questions to And, if you would like to support the show and all the work that we do, go to and consider becoming a patron and becoming part of the SGU community. Our listeners and supporters are what make SGU possible.


Today I Learned

  • Fact/Description, possibly with an article reference[9]
  • Fact/Description
  • Fact/Description



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