I'm a huge fan of Point of Inquiry, the podcast produced by the Center for Inquiry. Which means: I'm a huge fan of DJ Grothe. When I listen to him, I get the feeling he agrees with everything I think. He asks exactly the questions I want him to ask. But here's the magic: probably everyone feels that way. DJ is a former magician, so it's possible he's doing something with scarves and mirrors. But in fact, I think he creates the "sympatico illusion" by being intellectually extremely flexible. He can speak as if having many different viewpoints. This makes him a really good interviewer.
For a long time I've been waiting for DJ (first name basis because, after all, he and I agree on everything) to be whisked away by some big time media outlet. Well, he got whisked away, but not my any media outlet. He's leaving PoI to be president of the James Randi Foundation. Three interviewers are taking his place, including none other than Chris Mooney. Yes, that Chris Mooney. The one who criticized PZ Myers in his (and Sheril Kirshenbaum's) book Unscientific America, much to the consternation of many atheists. Now there's more consternation (also here). Why him, of all people?
I don't share any of this consternation, but I do think we're not going to have another DJ in Chris Mooney. Chris is a person with publicly and passionately held Views. Nuthin wrong with that, but he can't very well be a guy known for Views and create the sympatico illusion. Well, everybody has their own strengths. We shouldn't be expecting the new triumverate to be DJ times three. I'll certainly keep listening, and open-mindedly, but I'm gonna miss DJ!