I am leaving the JREF Presidency

By Phil Plait | December 7, 2009 8:36 am

It is with bittersweet feelings that I announce that as of January 1, 2010, I will no longer be President of the James Randi Educational Foundation. On that date, skeptic, podcaster, and all-around good guy D. J. Grothe will take the helm. The JREF has a press release online with more information.

This was a very difficult decision for me. But I’m leaving the Presidency so I can concentrate on some future TV projects I’ve been developing. This has been a dream of mine for more than a decade, and something I’ve worked on very hard, so it’s an opportunity I simply could not pass up. With that in mind, I discussed this with Randi and the other members of the JREF Board of Directors, and we all agreed it was for the best. Not to rationalize this too much, but if this does work out it means I’ll be able to promote skepticism, science, and critical thinking to a much larger audience. This will ultimately benefit the JREF itself, too.

phil_dj_carlsagandayI’m really happy D. J. accepted the role of President in my stead. He is a beloved member of the skeptical community. His podcast, Point of Inquiry, is among the best in the business. He is a thoughtful, intellectual, interesting, and warm person, and will be an outstanding example of leadership when he takes the JREF reins. With D. J. involved, the future of the JREF is stronger than ever.

And this isn’t to say I’m severing all ties with the JREF! Far from it. I strongly believe (if I may use that word) in the mission and goals of the Foundation, and I have no desire to just walk away. I’ll stay on in an informal capacity to advise, impart my rich wisdom, and tell Randi puns. You have to stick with your strengths.

And to belay the obvious question: I can’t disclose any more details about the TV stuff right now. Sorry, but I really can’t. Rules is rules. Trust me, when I have news I can report I’ll be singing it from the rooftops.

randi_me_tam6The past 15 months have been quite the whirlwind, what with TAM 7, TAM London, Randi’s health announcement, and so much more. The JREF stands solid and tall in the world of skepticism and critical thinking. Being a part of it, representing it, and working with Randi himself has been more than an honor. It’s been, well, amazing.

And finally, I want to thank everyone who has been involved with the JREF: the staff; the circle of magicians, scientists, and skeptics we contact for advice and help; the JREF Board of Directors for accepting me into the fold in the first place, and Randi his own self. Without him, it would just be the EF. And that’s just silly.

And, of course, the JREF community at large across the planet. You are the ones who have made us who we are: a global force of rationality and reason. You know as well as we do that the struggle against the forces of unreason will never end. Without your support, your energy, and your enthusiasm, our ability to stand up for sense and science would grind to a halt. Presidents will come and go, but you will always be there, and that means more to us — more to me — than can be said. Thank you all.

CATEGORIZED UNDER: JREF, Skepticism

Comments (129)

  1. Geomaniac

    So sorry to see you leaving JREF Phil. But it is very exciting that we may be seeing more of you on TV.

  2. Holy cow! Okay, good person right behind you, so I’m not worried. Just sad to see the likes of you stepping down.

    Rules being rules, what information ARE you allowed to share? ;) Anyone you working with that we might know? Any sort of (TM) type people? :P

    Okay, I was fishing.

  3. So is there some “Skeptologists” news you want to share?
    If you need an HDV shooter/editor on the East Coast, just holler!

  4. Adrian Lopez

    Congratulations Phil for what will hopefully become a popular skeptical TV show. It’s a shame you won’t have time to serve as JREF president, but I’m really glad we might end up with a new pro-science, pro-skepticism TV show in a world where such shows are depressingly rare.

  5. The JREF had a hell of a run with Phil Plait at the helm. Thanks for doing everything you’ve done, Phil. Look forward to seeing your TV show – whatever it may be!

  6. Brandon

    Wow! I wish you all the best and I know the JREF will come out stronger no matter what happens.

  7. Sir Eccles

    Clearly big woo has got to him, plied him with acai berry juice and wads of cash to keep him quiet on the big conspiracy.

  8. Best of luck in your new role Phil. I can’t think of a better person to see on TV promoting science and science-based thinking. This really plays to your strengths.

    PS – will we see the tattoo now? Or is that covered by “dem rules, dem rules” also? :-)

  9. Good luck, Phil. Looking forward to seeing you on TV. And DJ will do a great job!

  10. Obviously, the show is about the science behind tattoos.

  11. Dave Brown

    I’ve seen you in person. You have a great face for radio. Good luck anyhow.

  12. Well that’s not so bad! Grothe has a hell of a skeptic reputation — I should really start tuning in to his radio show. Admittedly I used to be confused by his initials and thought he spun records :p

    Whatever your TV project(s) Phil, please try to make them viewable online! And you know, don’t forget to blog now and then :)

    Also: Can you at least give us a yes/no about whether it involves Adam Savage? Separately you each have an infectious love of science, but with your combined creativity and humor… oh man.

  13. John Baxter

    Someone new for Randi to call “kid”.

  14. MattGS

    Wow. I think this here approximates my reaction:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ilk08Yt4huo

    Congratulations, Phil! So looking forward to seeing you on TV.

  15. Gary Ansorge

    Way cool, Phil. I just hope your TV show will be viewable on Hulu, since I no longer subscribe to cable/sat TV and watch all MY shows on the InterTubes.

    I just hope your shows’ popularity equals or exceeds my other fav. pundit, Jon Stewart.

    Peace,

    Gary 7

  16. Michelle R

    The BA?! On TEE VEE? That’d be a dreaaaaaaam come true.

    I hope we’ll have access to it in that weird place called Canada.

  17. I just wanna know if the TV show thing is in the “might happen” category, the “pretty sure it’ll happen” category, or “yeah, it’s gonna happen, barring some 11th hour insanity” category.

  18. Emilio S

    Good luck, Dr. Plait. We certainly need a face on TV, standing for science and reason. And astronomy, of course.

  19. Sad to hear you’re stepping down but DJ Grothe is awesome too so the JREF is in good hands!

    Good luck with whatever mysterious TV thing you have planned! I look forward to seeing more skepticism on TV!

  20. Jason

    Congratulations to both Phil and D.J. Looking forward to this secret TV project coming soon. We can only hope D.J. will start a new JREF podcast. Anyone know if this means D.J. will no longer be doing the POI podcast? If not I will be very disappointed.

  21. Radwaste

    Guys, the TV project is really the great deal on Farscape that appeared last week on Slickdeals… he works in his pajamas, don’t you remember?

    I find that to be great evidence of genius, myself – along with the wonderful eye candy The Man seems to have nearby. That’s camera-ready!

    See what having a 12″ Dobsonian can do for you – when you know what to do with it?

  22. PaleGreenPantsWithNobodyInsideThem

    wow, good luck Phil.

    BTW, I am the official all around good guy. Says so on my work email signatures. i dmand that DJ pay me royalties for the name.

  23. Phil, are your tv appearances going to be on Oprah’s new network? :-)

    Seriously, congratulations on your new opportunities and thank you for all the work you’ve done. I definitely look forward to seeing more of you on tv.

  24. Pete

    I have just come from a covert viewing of Phil’s new show – The Vaxxinator!

    It’s about a doctor from the future who is trying to save a young boy who will become the leader of humanity, but the evil robot empire has sent back a vial of measles, mumps AND rubella to strike him down before he can become a hero. Phil stars as the doc, Jenny McCarthy stars as the boy’s mother, who has been misled by the Empire’s back-in-time agents spreading false information about the safety of vaccines….
    :-)

  25. Mike

    Not to totally suck-up or anything, but I can definitely see Phil filling Carl Sagan’s shoes as a popularizer of science better than the others currently doing TV, and better than Carl might do if he were alive today with today’s audience. Blasphemy, I know.

    Media is totally different today than it was back when Carl did Carson or the original Cosmos series and our expectations are so much higher. I LOVED the original Cosmos series and bought the book, but today the reruns totally put me to sleep. OK, part of that is the material is old hat and out of date and these are reruns, but part of it is that we demand so much more of the media that we consume. (note to the Skepticality podcast folks, you REALLY need to edit your podcasts a little more. Not every interview question and response is worth broadcasting)

    Good luck Phil. The skeptical point of view will be helped immensely as you find ways to get the message out to a broader audience.

  26. Michael

    I smell a DFTS TV series…

  27. I finally forked up money for a JREF membership and you run off? Pssssshhhttt. Whatevs.

    Of course, seriously, it’s too bad to see you leaving as JREF Prez, but that is SO COOL that you are pursuing a TV project! Can’t wait to hear more. And it looks like you are leaving the JREF in very good hands. :-)

  28. The Mad LOLScientist, FCD

    What, someone bit on Skeptologists? Please say yes! (Probably too much to hope for that it would be on basic cable, but I can dream, can’t I?)

  29. Big warm congratulations to both you and D.J.! (Especially you if this TV deal is even half as big as I expect it to be). You both deserve it.

    I look forward to future updates. :-)

  30. Brian T.

    I’ve been wishing that Phil had his own TV show for years. I haven’t read “Death from the Skies” yet (asking for it as a Christmas present, though). But his original “Bad Astronomy” book has enough fun stuff for an entire season of TV just by itself!

    There are plenty of well known faces of science and skepticism on TV these days. On the popular side, of course there’s the Mythbusters and Penn & Teller. On the more academic side, there’s people like Neil deGrasse Tyson, Richard Dawkins, Michio Kaku, and Brian Cox. They’re all very good presenters and they know their stuff.

    Despite that, no one TV-friendly scientific persona has made an impact in recent years like Carl Sagan did with “Cosmos”. I’ve been hoping that a modern day equivalent would pop up. What the field of astronomy, or just science in general really needs is an extremely visible and engaging show like that, which can engage peoples’ minds and raise awareness.

    If you mention things that excite you about the Hubble Space Telescope or the Large Hadron Collider in conversation with the average person, they’ll look at you like you’re an alien. But they could probably chew your ear off about Jon and Kate.

    This is a cultural crime of the highest order, and this trend needs to be reversed.

  31. Our Phil is going to Hollywood. (sniff) I remember way back when he just had the blog …and the two books …and the JREF thing …oh, and that asteroid named after him…

    Congrats on the TV gig, Phil. We certainly need more critical thinking on the tube.

  32. Charles Boyer

    Congrats are in order, Dr. P, and I am glad to hear that your prospects are so exciting to you that you are departing something that you love in order to pursue them.

    For those of us on the receiving side of the screen, this is good news.

  33. kevbo

    ‘Randi puns”…heh heh heh

  34. Sili

    Sorry to see you go. Hope to see you more.

  35. Phil Plait – the next Carl Sagan?

  36. Jeremy

    Sad to see you go Phil. Grothe is more of an atheist than a skeptic and I expect the agenda of the JREF to continue in that direction. The JREF is going downhill with this appointment.

  37. Nivi

    Nice, Phil. Please ensure that we Canadians can tune in too!
    I hope DJ’ll continue to host the PoI podcast.

  38. Steve Page

    Congratulations, Phil – it sounds like you have some exciting times ahead! It was an honour and a privilege to meet you and hear you speak at TAM London, and I hope that our paths will cross again at some point in the future. Very best wishes to you.

  39. deathmonkey

    Well, they probably felt weird having and astrologer as their president. Now that you’re free of the shackles of Big Skeptic, we can finally get some truth on this blog!

    I joke, I joke! Seriously, it’s too bad you’re leaving the JREF, but the world needs more Phil Plait. Good luck, and many happy returns.

  40. Torbjörn Larsson, OM

    “Phil Plait announced DEATH for his JREF presidency – and pundemonium ensued.”

    No really, we will live on, JREF will live on, but more importantly BA will live on in his starry TV heaven. I can’t think of it as anything else but another evidence of cosmic expansion. :-D

  41. Sigmund

    I knew it.
    Just today there was a piece on CNN about Paris Hilton reviving her career.
    I looks like they’ve got the ideal replacement for Nicole for a new series of ‘The SImple Life’
    Just be careful of those nightlight cameras Phil!

  42. Thanks everyone for your comments and support. I really do wish I could say more about the TV… but just you wait. :)

    And Jeremy (#37): I disagree strongly. D. J. will make the JREF even better. The JREF was run by an outspoken atheist for 13 years, so why would you expect things to change now?

  43. rrt

    Phil:

    Tell your pending Big Media Masters that you bring a substantial, devoted core audience all nice and turn-key. I only get truly basic cable, but I WILL buy whatever is necessary to get the Phil Plait Show/Skeptologists/Whatever. A buncha people ready to do that oughta get their attention.

  44. Gary Ansorge

    I can’t find an applicable post that might get read, so I’ll just add this here. I subscribe to a Saudi news feed and apparently they just had one of the worst weather disasters ever, on Nov. 30th this year. Typically, the entire Kingdom gets 2 inches of rain/year, ave. over the entire country. On Nov. 30th the city of Jeddah received 3.7 inches of rain in five HOURS. To see how this impacts this desert city, see the link:

    http://www.susris.org/blog/2009/11/30/jeddah-flood-jamia-district-video/

    ,,,but, of course, this has absolutely nothing to do with global warming(snark).

    Perhaps it was due to prayers by Pat Robertson,,,

    GAry 7

  45. Chip

    Phil – Considering the barrage of mumbo-jumbo on TV where, under the guise of entertainment, news and education, superstition and nonsense gets in the way of real science – I’m looking forward to your upcoming project!

    Often on TV, brain-burning nonsense gets in the way of real science and the real mysteries science is attempting to unravel. Congratulations to you and your too few colleagues on TV (such as Neil Degrasse Tyson) who bring rational thinking to the population.

  46. Wow! I didn’t see that coming, Phil. Anyway, you’ve done a superb job at the helm of the JREF. And D.J. following you is just awesome!

    I hope hope hope this TV thing is about the Skeptologists. I’ve been waiting so long for something to happen in that direction and for you guys to conquer teh wurld.

  47. Thomas Siefert

    Hope your TV plans doesn’t involve a red shirt in a new Star Trek series.

  48. Tom Woolf

    JREF’s loss is educational TV’s gain.

    I passed BAblog on to my sister who is home-schooling her two youngest. She was thrilled with the videos where Dr. Plait would answer kids’ questions. If Dr. Plait will be doing something along that same line on TV, or will become the new Mr. Wizard or Bill Nye, kids everywhere will benefit tremendously!

  49. Leander

    “(if I may use that word)”

    Of course. Strong belief is human. Though I wonder, even if you might not have been all that serious, what past or dreaded future experience prompted you to that line.

    But I was just thinking to myself, doesn’t a strong belief, no matter in what, actually get in the way of skepticism and rationality ?

    Anyway, good luck with the new projects.

  50. tacitus

    All this just to get on The Colbert Report????

  51. Congrats Phil, any job openings on the new series.

  52. Phil, as always, good luck with all your endeavors, and I can’t wait to see what your TV Projects entail.

    That being said, DJ Grothe is a *great* choice to lead the JREF, no disrepect to Phil intended. DJ will be a great president for the JREF. He’s been great for CFI and he’ll be great for the skeptic movement as it pertains to JREF.

    This is good news all around!

  53. Just out of curiosity, and I mean this without attempting to sound derogatory, but what is D.J Grothe’s education?

    I can’t find any mention of it online, and I’m hoping we aren’t getting stuck with some biologist (or even worse; chemist) running the show.

  54. Jack Mitcham

    Could we be commenting on the blog of the next Carl Sagan?!

  55. PsyberDave

    TV Spoiler

    Dr. Phil Plait to play Doctor Who Jr. in Doctor Who, The Next Generation.

  56. I am honestly saddened to read that you are stepping down Phil. With TAM7 and the improvements of the Swift Newsletter, and all the other fine things you brought to the table, yours has been a fine run.

    D.J. is a great choice and will hold the reins as well as you did.

    Tell him to make sure that Jeff Wagg stays around. THAT is the hardest working man in Skepticism.

    And is this the source of your Twitter the other day about how you love it when Randi calls you kid.

    See you at TAM8.

  57. Wow. All I did was go teach a class & look what happens when my back is turned…

    Congrats on reaching a place from which your dreams can be made into realities. I’m sure we will see as much (or more) of you as always…

  58. Does this mean the feud between JREF and CFI is over?

  59. PG

    I seem to recall Phil meeting with a certain Timelord earlier this year… Could there be a connection?

    Congrats Phil and lots of success to you!

  60. Finally! A Dr. Phil that I can pay attention to without throwing things at the TV!

  61. All hail DJ Grothe. Who was the old president. Phil who? Never heard of him.

  62. Douglas Troy

    Phil,

    You didn’t you tell DJ about the JREF Presidential requirement that he must be bald, did you?
    :P

  63. 55. PsyberDave Says:

    TV Spoiler

    Dr. Phil Plait to play Doctor Who Jr. in Doctor Who, The Next Generation.

    So the rumors he was cast as K-9 aren’t true?
    :)

    J/P=?

  64. Adrian Lopez

    I just realized we can now look forward to a new meme: “You’re on television?”

  65. Voss

    Good luck, Phil!

  66. PsyberDave & PG (#55 & #59): Yeah, that’s it! Phil’s going to be the first Doctor for the US version of Doctor Who. Obviously it won’t be exactly like the British version. A TARDIS disguised as a police box would look silly suddenly appearing at random US street-corners. In this version it’ll be a Starbucks.

  67. @62
    Just wait until he does his first test for million dollar challenge.

  68. ThatPirateGuy

    Do let us know what the new Bad Channel and Bad time will be.

    We’ll be there.

  69. Grand Lunar

    The news isn’t so sad.

    I’m eagerly anticipating what these TV projects are!

    The voice of skepticism is desperately needed in today’s world!

  70. deathmonkey

    Phil Plait is Wesley Crusher in Star Trek II: Time Travelin’ Tramps!

  71. Thomas Siefert:

    Hope your TV plans doesn’t involve a red shirt in a new Star Trek series.

    I just picked up the new Star Trek movie Blu-Ray. Among the many extras was a clip talking to the “red shirt guy”. He was excited to be shooting the scene where they jump from the shuttle to the drilling platform, but kept complaining that they wouldn’t show him a script for the next scene.

  72. !AstralProjectile

    Heh @68

    BADMAN!
    “Join us next week at the same bad time on the same bad channel!”

  73. skylyre

    I’m so excited! FINALLY another red bearded scientist to watch! (Someone’s been getting my suggestions I keep mailing in to those big TV execs.)

    Seriously, I remember when my astronomy teacher in high school 7 years ago introduced me to the Bad Astronomy website (ohh those movie reviews) and I’ve been hooked ever since! This is a perfect direction for you to take and I think you’ll do an awesome job with whatever you do.

    squeeee! :)

  74. Strangel

    Just heard on Pharyngula…. I think the general consensus is that you are too damned ugly for TV but you will have our support anyways! hehehe ;-)

  75. Maybe you can make a fitness game for Wii so next we can see you do ads on tv other than that certain blonde antivaxxer.

  76. Congrats Phil on your (secret) TV opportunity, the outcome of which I’m sure everyone here will be looking forward to. I’m glad to have attended TAM London while you were JREF president (and thanks for signing my copies of your books!).

    It’ll be interesting to see if the character of the JREF changes much with DJ’s appointment. The focus of Swift is already shifting, so perhaps some changes are in progress.

    Anyway, best of luck to you both!

  77. Mike

    DJ will do a fantastic job, and to know that we get some more Phil on TV?
    I think this is a good thing. =D

  78. Good Luck Phil!! Anything to take the foul taste of Ghost Lab out of my mouth would be a useful addition to my TV line-up. Of course if you are obliquely referring to The Skeptologists than I say, at the risk of sounding lick a misogynistic pig, more Dr. Kirsten Sanford, please!

    Oh, and by the way, you should have gotten your tattoo on your neck or forehead or somewhere a bit more visible. Just so they could add the word “Ink” to any future show title. “Bad Astronomy Ink” has a kicking ring to it. Of course if your show just turns out to be just some skeptic version of Phil & Kate Plus Eight I’ll be a bit disappointed.

  79. Marius Oestby

    I wish you all the best for your future endeavours, Phil.
    I’ll be looking forward to see some of your TV work.

  80. Charlie Young

    Hey, good luck with that and be sure to let us know when your material shows up on the small screen. Does this mean less blogging for you?

  81. Joey Joe Joe

    Just admit it, Phil… You’re being forced to step down in the wake of your involvement in the Global Warming conspiracy! ;)

  82. Tim G

    I look forward to hearing more about the television deal. Can you give us a hint about when you can disclose more information? Are you staying in Boulder?

  83. Nerdista

    I just can’t wait to see what television projects he’s working on! This is incredibly exciting!

  84. Good luck, Dr. Plait. I can’t wait to see what you have in store for the television (and if it’s on basic cable – make sure it airs after 5 PM EST, or I won’t be able to watch it, stupid work.)

  85. MadScientist

    I’m sure we’ll all be very grateful for DJ Grothe for taking on the job; I think he’ll be great.

    I can just imagine your Close Personal Friend Adam showing up going “can I blow something up?” Or “Hey Wil, when was the last time *you* were on TV?” On the dark side, Colbert may be inclined to finally invite you onto his show.

    I hope it all goes well – more of the Good Guys on TV can’t be bad.

  86. Liz

    As long as this means we all get more Phil Rations(tm), I’m down with it 100%. Is it appropriate for one skeptic to wish another good luck? ;-)

  87. Wow Phil! I am very happy for you! Also sad to see you leaving the JREF presidency, but you’re leaving it in excellent hands. This is very exciting news and I can’t wait to hear more about it.
    :-)

  88. Good luck in your new ventures, Phil! Interested to see your TV ideas…

  89. breadfred

    Phil, I surely hope that whatever this tv project is, it will be available in the UK (and around other parts of the world)

  90. Sarah

    Congrats on the *secret* TV show stuff! Can’t wait to see you on TV, I will tie my little sister to the chair and make her listen to you. Maybe you can get it into her head that NASA is NOT a waste of money. :D

  91. Sandra (MedTek)

    Phil if you join Mythbusters I’m going to have to be upset.

    Seriously though good luck to you and please make sure that new guy understands how very much fun London is and also that we have Tim Minchin.

  92. kevbo

    Science adviser to Joss Whedon’s revival of Firefly now that Dollhouse is done?

    …that’s how rumors get started…

  93. You have a book TV show?

    Congratulations Phil. So are you the new geek on The Big Bang Theory?
    DJ is a great choice for POJREF. Congrats to DJ too.

    Um, will the former POJREF be making his way to Oz for “TAM” Oz in 2010?

  94. kordic

    Good choice with DJ, he certainly fits the bill. Does that mean no more Point of Inquiry?

  95. Elmar_M

    Phil, I dont know whether to be sad or happy. Sad because you are leaving the JREF, or happy because you are going to do an exciting TV- project.
    In any case, all the best and good luck to both you and the JREF.

  96. Keith

    I’m looking forward to those TV projects. I will watch every single one. :)

  97. @Shane, you actually caused my wife to LOL! (Trust me, that’s an impressive feat!) Well done! :D

  98. Jerome Clemente

    Its too soon, it is indeed bittersweet but see you on T.V. I will always tell my peers when we are watching your show. I know that guy before he was on TV… Worship him from what he’s always done. :) smile everybody

  99. kitty

    PHil I can’t wait to see you on tv. The kids at the school love BOTH of your books. You must have enough to put your daughter through college from all the copies of “Bad Astronomy” alone the kids have gone through (that’s WITH me now putting clear contact paper over the covers and tipping in pages when they fall out).

    Now get on the tv and you can shun me and say “Kitty WHO? I don’t know any Kitty?” It’s ok, just keep connecting with kids and people like you do with your books. Only with your really sexy self. Yeah, that goes even when I have my glasses ON.

  100. J. D. Mack

    I know that he would never gripe about this, but I will. It’s D.J.! Not DJ. D Period J Period. Show some respect and put some effort into spelling the man’s name correctly!

    J. D. (who uses a space as the third character in his name, incidentally)

  101. Daniel J. Andrews

    I’ve listened to D.J.’s podcast many times and I’ve been impressed with the way he handles delicate subjects. I like how he asks persistent questions even with people he agrees with, making them clarify their answers or defend them.

  102. Deej is such a good devil’s advocate sometimes I’ve started to wonder where he actually stands on an issue. He is good.

  103. My DVR will be ready and waiting.

  104. Good luck to both you and DJ Grothe

  105. Annie M

    Oh NOES! Just as there is a possibility of a TAM in OZ, you leave?

    Oh Phil how could you!

    Seriously, although I’m dismayed you’re leaving the JREF presidency, if it means you may be able to better promote all things sciencey and skeptic-y, this must be a good thing.

    Therefore we will rejoice and give our full support to whatever you do in the future.

    This is of course, as we weep into our beers about the lost opportunity to see you in the flesh….

  106. ausduck

    But Phil, you’ll still blog, won’t you? Won’t you?????
    And I agree with Annie M – just when there’s talk of TAM Downunder. Coises!

    Srsly, I look forward to the fruits of your venture(s), and wish you all the best.

    And of course, fingers crossed that your love of minties overides everything else for a short time and we do get to see you at TAM Downunder :)

  107. ZERO
  108. Glen

    Cool news, Phil! Best of luck in your new venture!

  109. CR

    Very interesting… looking forward to further revelations.

  110. Jesper

    Congratulations D.J. with your presidency and thanks Phil! The TV project sounds exciting. Can’t wait to here more about it!

  111. RAF

    Well, that’s rather odd…so if I link to this page a post is generated?…

    eta…cool…

  112. Ricky

    Phil sorry to hear that you have to step down but I’m really looking forward to your TV show :D Keep up the good work!

  113. I can see the poster now…

    TAM OZ 2010
    Special guests include TV stars Phil Plait and his good friend Adam Savage.

  114. BTW, they can’t call it OzTAM – they’re the official TV ratings people.

  115. Eileen R

    It’s about time the TV gods bless you! Phil, you’ve got the perfect blend of warm, down-t0-earth accessibility, humor, and antipathy to jargon that we need to blend with the science-and-reason message. This is awesome news!

    Signed,

    That birdwatching whale-hugging enviro scientist on the JREF Alaska trip.

    P.S. While at JREF, did you manage to convince a certain JW why global warming denialism is NOT scientific skepticism? Perhaps from your lofty position you’ll explain this to Penn & Teller as well…

    Ohhh, I get it! You’re being added as a third host on Bulls hit! Love Teller, but Penn does kinda need someone to talk back at him sometimes…

  116. Buzz

    Re: the query about D.J.’s education, he appears to have done graduate study at Washington University, though there’s no indication of what topic or the title of his thesis: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/D._J._Grothe … but he did also do on the job study with Paul Kurtz, one of the world’s leading skeptics and humanists, given he worked for him for 10 years.

  117. ” I’ll be able to promote skepticism, science, and critical thinking to a much larger audience.”

    But not too effectively until you learn to question in a more critical way your own religious beliefs, become more skeptical of consensus “science,” and remember — clearly and without qualification — that science is about truth and not about money, prestige, and television shows.

  118. Eileen R

    Today’s Phrase: Ad Hominem Blogwhoring Cheapshot.
    Definition: See comment #125.

  119. Buzz

    Further research indicates that Grothe was pursuing a Masters degree at Washington University, when he began his affiliation with CFI through WULF, the student group there. Still no indication whether he finished his studies there, or wrote a thesis.

  120. Isn’t this a little like Sarah Palin stepping down as governor to persue a career in whatever she’s doing now? ;)

    Seriously, good luck, man! In my dreams there’s a two-hour block on the Discovery Channel with Mythbusters and Phil Plait’s Space Extravaganza!. I can dream. :)

  121. woodNfish

    So Phil, the AGW lapdog is going to have a TV show? Woopdie-doo. This has what to do with science?

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