In the first half, medical sociologist Robert E. Bartholomew, Ph.D. talked about such topics as the 'sonic wave' attacks in Cuba, conspiracy theories, bizarre behaviors, mass hysteria, and ghosts & hauntings. The first scientist to publish an analysis of the attacks of US embassy personnel in Cuba, he's concluded that they were the result of a "mass psychogenic illness," or a kind of mass hysteria. The attacks, he noted, all were said to take place in either the employee's homes or hotels rather than the embassy, and it would be challenging to target sound devices at these people in such a wide variety of locations. Further, their symptoms of headaches and dizziness did not seem to correlate with the effects of sound waves, he cited.
Another strange case he labeled similarly involved 24 students at two high schools in northeastern Massachusetts, where in 2012, they began to exhibit mysterious hiccuping sounds over a several month period. The State Health Department investigated, and Bartholomew believes they covered up their conclusion that it was indeed a psychogenic illness.
He detailed the bizarre case history of a male teenager who thought he was a cat, and acted out a series of feline behaviors. The case was documented in Harvard Medical School's Journal of Nervous and Mental Disease. Bartholomew also touched on his interest in ghosts, commenting that there does seem to be a genuine phenomenon taking place, but it remains uncertain as to whether people are actually seeing the spirits of the deceased.
In the third hour, Chandra Wickramasinghe, Ph.D., the director of the Centre for Astrobiology at the University of Buckingham and a professor of applied mathematics and astronomy, discussed the compelling evidence that life, intelligence, and evolution on Earth were seeded by cosmic forces. He is a proponent of the theory of panspermia which argues that life exists throughout the universe, and is distributed by meteors and comets. "There were packages of genes, DNA and RNA coming to the Earth," and these set in motion the first forms of life-- bacteria, and viruses-- which arrived here around 4.2 to 4.3 billion years ago, he suggested. He also talked about the recently spotted cigar-shaped object from deep space called Oumuamua, the first of such visitors to our vicinity.
The last hour featured Open Lines.
Bumper music from Thursday December 28, 2017