Saturday, June 20, 2015

Conspiracy Skeptic: Free Masonry

Local Masonic Lodge in Hershey, PA
nothing to fear here . . .
The last Conspiracy Skeptic podcast to drop was on August 21, 2014 that is until the day before yesterday on June 18, 2015.  Yes, our great skeptical nightmare is over: Karl Mamer is back.  However, as of this writing he still has not posted a link on his website, so go to iTunes to download it or do an RSS feed search.  Karl's return has inspired me to finally post something after my longest break since starting this blog in July, 2009.  Karl noted on this episode that life has just become too busy for him to post over the last ten months or so. My excuse is that the state of skepticism has made me a bit depressed.  Luckily, a new CS can turn my frown upside down.  

The topic of the latest episode of CS is Freemasonry.  Surprisingly, it is a topic that Karl has not covered in-depth before.  Next to the Illuminati and "the Jews," the Freemasons take the rap for almost everything bad in the world these days.  Karl engages in a discussion with Blake Oates, a 28-year Freemason and Masters student in anthropology.  While Karl and Blake discuss the history of the Freemasons and its origins, much of the discussion revolves around certain misconceptions of Freemasonry and just what it is like to be a Freemason in the American midwest.  

. . . or is there at lodge number 666!!!!!
(This is all quite true.)
Blake explains what it means to be, for example, a "level 32" Freemason, and how one actually becomes a Freemason.  He discusses what Freemasons do, and I have to say for me it sounds pretty boring.  Basically, it is a frat for adult men.  However, they do not have beer-soaked late night parties in a basement, jungle juice cocktails geared toward the co-eds, and games of anchorman. (Blake isn't even a drinker.) It sounds like a social club for men to meet, hangout, try and do some good in the community, while being apolitical or religious.  While I appreciate that others would find that interesting, it's not for me.  I never joined a frat in undergrad, and I don't think I would join this much tamer version of a fraternity.  Now, if the Freemason were an arm in a secret world government bent on world domination that actually might be interesting.  

The episode had me recall that my late uncle wanted me to join the Freemasons like himself.  He made it sound like a good way to get a cool ring and learn secret handshakes and code words to get out of trouble if whoever was persecuting you happened to be a Freemason.  He shared a story of doing something or the other wrong while he was in the Air Force, and he was convinced the only reason he was not disciplined was that his C.O. was a Freemason and that got him off the hook.  I have no idea if this story is accurate, or if his use of secret code terms in his letter to his C.O. helped.  Probably not any worse than me giving a fellow Gettysburg College grad or skeptic some additional benefit of the doubt.  My uncle passed away before he could try and cajole me into the order.  To be honest, the ring was bit too bling for my tastes.     

Anyway, the episode clocks in at over an hour, and hearing Karl back behind a mic discussing an interesting topic that ultimately is about a quite mundane organization was pleasant.  Or is this just what 'they' want you to believe?  Probably not.  Give the show a listen, and enjoy the return of Karl onto the podcast scene.  I am sure all those anti-Mason types will consider this episode some sort of counter PR move.  If so, I hope Karl considers me while receiving his bribe money.  

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