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America’s Quack Dr. Oz is running for Senate to become the new Rand Paul

America’s Quack Dr. Mehmet Oz announced that he will run for the GOP nomination for Senate in Pennsylvania. We really don’t need another quack senator like Rand Paul, but we might get one just the same.

I coined the term “America’s Quack” to describe Dr. Mehmet Oz as a riff on how Oprah Winfrey had branded him as “America’s Doctor.” (At least I think I did; it’s entirely possible that someone else thought of it first and I just popularized the term.) Whatever the case, it’s been a long time since I’ve written about Dr. Oz. Indeed, when last I wrote about Dr. Oz, it was in the context of how Oprah Winfrey, though her elevation of Dr. Oz and “Dr. Phil” McGraw, had a lot to answer for in terms of the current state of medicine in popular culture during the pandemic. At the time, which was quite early in the pandemic, both Dr. Oz and Dr. Phil were promoting COVID-19 minimization and denial, with Dr. Oz having gotten into trouble in particular for suggesting that we should open the schools again because “only” 3% more people might die, even referring to opening schools as a “very appetizing opportunity.” He did eventually apologize (sort of), but not before memes like this had popped up.

Dr. Oz's COVID-19 denial
April 2020: Dr. Oz thought that “only” 3% more deaths was an “appetizing” tradeoff.

This happened in April 2020. No, seriously. It happened only a month after the World Health Organization (WHO) had declared COVID-19 a global pandemic.

Meanwhile Dr. Phil was going on and on about how the mental health toll of lockdowns would supposedly kill more people than COVID-19 would. Indeed, thinking back on these two that early in the pandemic reminded me how, when it comes to COVID-19 contrarian takes and minimization, certain messages were baked in very, very early, some with the help of Dr. Oz, who famously also enthusiastically embraced Dr. Didier Raoult’s bad science used to promote hydroxychloroquine as a miracle treatment for the coronavirus. It turned out to be the Black Knight of COVID-19 treatments and ineffective.

So I suppose that I shouldn’t be surprised to have learned the other day that Dr. Oz plans to run for the Senate in Pennsylvania to become the new Senator Rand Paul, namely the quackiest physician to have been elected to the Senate:

Dr. Mehmet Oz, a cardiothoracic surgeon and television personality, is running for the US Senate in Pennsylvania as a Republican, according to an op-ed published Tuesday in the conservative Washington Examiner.”During the pandemic, I learned that when you mix politics and medicine, you get politics instead of solutions. That’s why I am running for the U.S. Senate: to help fix the problems and to help us heal,” Oz wrote.The 61-year-old Oz will join a Republican primary field that already includes Philadelphia-area businessman (and 2018 lieutenant governor nominee) Jeff Bartos and Carla Sands, who served as US ambassador to Denmark in the Trump administration. Another potential Republican candidate is David McCormick, a former official in the Treasury Department under President George W. Bush.

The race in Pennsylvania to succeed retiring Republican Sen. Pat Toomey has been shaken up in recent weeks, primarily by the departure of GOP candidate Sean Parnell, who was endorsed by former President Donald Trump.

“Pennsylvania needs a conservative who will put America first,” Oz said in a 60-second video on his campaign website.

Even more consistent with Dr. Oz’s history, he doesn’t even live in Pennsylvania. For years, he’s lived in New Jersey, while his clinical practice and the studios where he tapes his show are both in New York City. Last year, though, he voted absentee thusly:

Yes, carpetbagging is entirely consistent with the Oz ethos, as he’s been a grifter through and through for a very long time, promoting all manner of quackery on The Dr. Oz Show. Indeed, over all the years that I’ve been writing about Dr. Oz, there’s one thing that’s always puzzled me about him, namely how someone who was such a promising young surgeon-scientist three decades ago could have fallen so far—from a scientific and medical standpoint, that is. He has been, after all, making a ton of money and enjoying incredible fame, thanks to his embrace of quackery. Even more frustrating, even though Dr. Oz has disgraced himself more times than I can remember, he remains faculty in good standing at Columbia University. Indeed, he’s more than faculty in good standing there. He’s actually a full professor in the department of surgery and even vice-chair! Unsurprisingly, he’s also been also the director of Columbia’s Cardiovascular Institute and Integrative Medicine Program since the 1990s. In other words, he does hold high ranking positions in Columbia University’s department of surgery and integrative medicine program.

Given the rigors of taping a daily TV show more than nine months out of the year, I’ve always wondered when Dr. Oz finds time to see patients and operate, especially given that cardiothoracic surgery is not a “low intensity specialty.” Cardiac surgeons deal with very sick patients, and it takes a great deal of dexterity and training to be able, for instance, to sew bypass grafts to coronary arteries, which are not exactly large vessels, and the postoperative care is a 24/7 thing, not for part time surgeons. I’ve speculated that he must have the most understanding partners in the world, because it’s likely they who have to care for Dr. Oz’s postoperative patients while he’s gallivanting about taping his shows, doing interviews, and just in general grifting. (Unsurprisingly, his faculty profile lists him as not accepting new patients, despite the long list of clinical interests included.) As brilliant as I’ve heard him described as a surgeon back in the day, today I don’t think I’d want Dr. Oz to operate on me or any of my family members, no matter how brilliant and talented he might have been a quarter century ago.

However Dr. Oz manages to pull off being a heart surgeon, administrator for his department, director of his university’s integrative medicine program, and host of a popular daytime medical talk show, ever since Oprah Winfrey found him nearly two decades ago and elevated him from a promising young academic surgeon with a penchant for woo to America’s Quack I’ve been pointing out how much dubious medicine and outright quackery he’s been promoting over the years. I’m not talking “soft” quackery either. I’m talking quackery as bad as The One Quackery To Rule Them All (homeopathy) and even faith healing, as well as the promotion of the antivaccine views of Robert F. Kennedy, Jr., and even psychic scammers like John Edward and Theresa Caputo. In addition, he’s promoted unproven (and almost certainly nonexistent) links between cell phones and breast cancerGMO fear mongering,  By 2014, Dr. Oz’s reputation for quackery had gotten so bad that he was increasingly facing less than adoring press and was hauled before Senator Claire McCaskill’s (D-MO) committee for his unscrupulous boosterism for unproven weight loss supplements, where he was soundly humbled.

If you want an idea of just how low Dr. Oz had sunk as a doctor, I like to cite a hilarious misstep from several years ago. That’s when Dr. Oz’s social media people tried to do a an “Ask Dr. Oz” segment on Twitter under the hashtag #OzsInbox. Let’s just say that it backfired spectacularly and hilariously. In fact, even though it’s more than seven years later, I can’t help but post a couple of the fun Tweets that Dr. Oz’s hashtag inspired:

Good times, those were. Today, not so much. Here’s what I mean. Let’s take a look at Dr. Oz’s statement announcing his candidacy:

We are angry at our government and at each other.

We have not managed our crises as effectively as past generations. During the pandemic, I learned that when you mix politics and medicine, you get politics instead of solutions. That’s why I am running for the U.S. Senate: to help fix the problems and to help us heal. 

Is Dr. Oz going to use homeopathy, crystals, psychics, or acupuncture to heal the nation? Inquiring minds want to know! I also can’t help but add a retort that when you mix—or, dare I say, “integrate”—quackery with medicine, you get quackery instead of medicine, which is what Dr. Oz has been peddling all these years. Of course, Dr. Oz is being disingenuous. It’s impossible to disentangle politics from medicine, especially in the middle of a global pandemic, because, while healthcare should be based in the best science (something Dr. Oz isn’t known for), how healthcare is paid for and administered is inherently political. Americans love to labor under the delusion that certain things, like medicine, should be “free from politics” even as seniors, for instance, denounce “socialized medicine” as they fiercely defend Medicare against anything that they perceive as potentially decreasing their benefits. It’s not just seniors either, although they are an easy target for this criticism (and, I note, I’m not nearly as far from being one of them as I’d like). It’s almost everyone, including those who labor under another delusion, namely that “free market” and “private sector” alone will ever be able to guarantee universal health insurance coverage.

Even school vaccine mandates have always been political. It’s just that they have until the last several years, generally been pretty nonpartisan, with a broad political consensus having existed that they are a good thing. Unfortunately, this political consensus behind them began to fray a decade ago and started to become increasingly politicized around five or six years ago, with antivaxxers succeeding more and more in making common cause with the right by opposing mandates based on “freedom,” “parental rights,” and opposition to government regulation. This tactic had been all too successful before the pandemic, too, and, worse, was turbocharged when COVID-19 hit. That’s when anti-“lockdown” and antimask protesters quickly made common cause with antivaxxers based on their shared antipathy to public health interventions, with all of them soon making common cause with the vilest conspiracy theorists, like QAnon, to the point that the Republican Party is now indisputably the antivaccine party. No wonder Dr. Oz fits in so well as a grifter and at least “antivax-adjacent” doctor!

Let’s go on to see what else Dr. Oz has to say announcing his candidacy:

Growing up as the child of immigrants, I witnessed my family’s sacrifices. My father grew up dirt poor (literally sleeping on a dirt floor) and loved this country as much as anyone already here. He saw the deep darkness of the alternatives. He taught me to study hard, enjoy the dignity of work, and serve others. My formative years were spent preparing for a lifetime of challenging operations.

I invented life-saving devices, trained young surgeons to save lives, and expected my days to be measured by countless people helped. But many patients came too late without appreciating their power to prevent chronic disease. I started changing this reality by leaving the safety of my medical practice to become the health expert on The Oprah Winfrey Show and, ultimately, the host of my own TV program. My training positioned me to make difficult decisions to help people in need and fight to empower my viewers.

You’ll excuse me if I have to stop typing briefly, so that I can make haste to the nearest toilet to vomit.

I get it. Dr. Oz’s father was poor. So what? Dr. Oz’s childhood was not spent in poverty. His father, in fact, owned quite a bit real estate by the time he died in 2019. Also, Dr. Oz graduated from elite universities and completed an elite surgical training program. As for those “difficult decisions,” how hard was it to decide to start doing a segment on Oprah Winfrey’s show when it was offered? Who would turn down such an opportunity, or, having succeeded at the segment, an offer by Oprah to produce his own daytime TV show? Let’s just look at his rationale, expressed in an old interview with Dr. Richard Green, the associate chief of cardiac, thoracic, and vascular surgery, a colleague of Oz’s:

I asked Green whether he’d want to be Oz’s patient, and he said, “If you did a poll of the staff at Columbia and asked them, ‘If you needed a heart operation and Mehmet was there, would you want him?’ they’d say yes.”

He then added, “He’s probably a little rusty right now.” He said Oz seemed to be operating less and less — from several hundred surgeries per year at his peak to a maximum of about 100 now — as he entertains more and more.

When I asked Green whether he thinks Oz has been corrupted by fame, he said, “I don’t think he’s a charlatan.” Green added that in addition to being a top-notch surgeon with impeccable credentials, Oz had long embraced alternative medicine. “In his earlier days, he always believed there was more to getting well than just a pill or an operation. I think there was a period of time he thought music had healing power. I think he’s very sincere in his belief.”

The same article notes that Dr. Oz’s belief in quackery goes way, way back to the early 1990s at least, or, as it was put, “ten years before he ever went on TV.” I also can’t help but note that Dr. Green dodged the question and didn’t say if he himself would have let Dr. Oz operate on him if he needed a heart operation. Dr. Green can’t fool a fellow surgeon in his response to such a question; a surgeon who thinks another surgeon is great will answer that question enthusiastically in the affirmative, rather than dodging it.

As for “empowering his viewers,” again, Dr. Oz has promoted all manner of quackery, likely influenced by his wife Lisa, who is a reiki master, whose father was also a cardiothoracic surgeon who embraced alternative medicine and Eastern mysticism, and whose mother was a true believer in homeopathy.. By 1995 others were calling him out for his quackery for letting reiki masters into his operating room.

He’s also always been all about the branding and grift. For example, since Dr. Oz announced his campaign, Sony Pictures, which syndicates his show, has had to make contingency plans to take his show off the air in Pennsylvania and any TV station whose signal can be received over-the-air in Pennsylvania. They even have a succession plan in place, in case Dr. Oz actually wins the nomination and has to spend 2022 campaigning:

Sony has a long-term plan if Oz wins the Republican nomination and spends 2022 running in the general election. Starting in mid-January, Oz’s daughter Daphne — a chef, author and TV personality — is slated to take over Oz’s time periods with a program called “The Good Dish,” according to two people familiar with the plan. 

“The Good Dish” would replace “Dr. Oz” for at least the rest of the 2021-22 TV season, said one person who does business with TV stations that carry “Dr. Oz.” A representative for Sony Pictures Television had no comment on its plans. Daphne Oz is a judge on the Fox reality series “MasterChef Junior” and was a co-host on the ABC daytime series “The Chew.”

Leave it to Dr. Oz to add nepotism to his grifting. Back to Dr. Oz’s reasons for running:

The reality of our challenges has crystallized during the pandemic. Over 750,000 in the United States have died from the virus, a devastating toll for families and communities. Many of those deaths were preventable. COVID-19 became an excuse for the government and elite thinkers who controlled the means of communication to suspend debate. Dissenting opinions from leading scholars were ridiculed and canceled so their ideas could not be disseminated.

“Leading scholars.” I wonder whom he means by that. If he’s referring to people like John Ioannidis, Jay Bhattarchya, Marty Makary, and the like, all COVID-19 contrarian academics who have consistently minimized the threat from the virus (sometimes even declaring the pandemic “over” as long as a year and a half ago) and cast doubt on mitigation measures like masks and lockdowns, I can only laugh. These people have had an incredibly prominent voice, not just on Fox News and right wing outlets, but all over the news, including CNN, MSNBC, and mainstream outlets. In reality, Dr. Oz, being a quack himself, identifies with his fellow contrarians, quacks, astroturfers, and grifters, because he’s used the same schtick when he was being criticized for promoting pseudoscience on his show.

Next up, Dr. Oz predictably appeals to freedumb:

Instead, the government mandated policies that caused unnecessary suffering. The public was patronized and misled instead of empowered. We were told to lock down quietly and let those in charge take care of the rest. When we tested positive for the virus, we were also told to wait at home until our lips turned blue and we got sick enough to warrant hospitalization. To be clear, this is not a typical medical protocol. Elites with yards told those without yards to stay inside, where the virus was more likely to spread. And the arrogant, closed-minded people in charge closed our parks, shuttered our schools, shut down our businesses, and took away our freedom. 

America should have been the world leader on how to beat the pandemic. Although we had some moments of brilliance, such as the gift to the world of mRNA vaccines made possible by President Donald Trump’s Operation Warp Speed, many great ideas were squashed. That’s not the America my parents came to. That’s not the one I grew up in. That’s not the one I want to leave behind.

First off, his accusations leave out important context. Dr. Oz’s version of “empowering” the public early in the pandemic consisted of promoting unproven drugs like hydroxychloroquine and azithromycin (plus zinc, I suppose) as miracle cures for COVID-19 while pointing to the “appetizing” possibility of a tradeoff between opening schools and suffering “only” 3% more deaths. Dr. Oz clearly wants you to forget his misdirection and grifting since the very beginning of the pandemic.

Note the nod to Donald Trump, who is portrayed as promoting a “moment of brilliance” that led to the development of mRNA vaccines, despite how many times he minimized the pandemic, promoted unscientific ideas about it, and generally promoted a “don’t worry, be happy” approach to the virus that emphasized the economy over public health. I also can’t help but point out that Dr. Oz himself has supported antivaccine hucksters, featuring, for example, Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. on his show in 2014 to hawk his antivaccine book with “functional medicine” quack Dr. Mark Hyman. (He’s had Joe Mercola and Mike Adams on his show as well.)

In 2010, Dr. Oz gave an interview with Joy Behar that went thusly:

BEHAR: Well first of all, someone want to know there`s a rumor that your kids did not get flu shots or swine flu shots is that right?

OZ: That`s true, they did not.

BEHAR: Do you not believe in them for the kids or what?

OZ: No, I would have vaccinated my kids but you know I – I`m in a happy marriage and my wife who makes most of the important decisions as most couples have in their lives.

BEHAR: Yes.

OZ: Who absolutely refuses. And listen the kids are pretty healthy. We actually think two of them caught swine flu very early on anyway. So there`s no point vaccinating them again. And you know –

At the time, reading between the lines, I gathered that Dr. Oz’s wife was almost certainly vehemently anti-vaccine and that there might have been a bit of tension in the Oz household over the issue of vaccinating their children. I also said that he needed to grow a backbone and admit his responsibility too; throwing his wife under the bus by blaming her for the decision and washing his hands of it on national TV was cowardly, and, worse, he gave the impression that he’s not involved in the health decisions for his children. Either way, a doctor who is not sufficiently pro-science to risk some unpleasantness with his wife to at least try to get his children vaccinated is not a good physician.

Then there was this part of the interview:

BEHAR: What do you, on that same subject, what do you think about this controversy that`s going around about vaccinations and autism and other little things that happens to kids?

OZ: I think kids like the canary and the coal mine. That they are more susceptible to some of the toxins maybe our generation was able to overcome. That`s why we have a lot more allergies now. Perhaps one of the reason why we have more autism. But I don`t think it`s just the vaccine.

BEHAR: No.

These were standard antivaccine talking points that were embraced not just by antivaxxers but the “antivax-adjacent” or “antivax sympathetic,” as I call them. Dr. Oz tried to portray himself as “not antivaccine” by saying it’s not “just the vaccine,” implying that the vaccines are part of it.

Given all of that plus Dr. Oz’s having been active in Republican politics in New Jersey, it shouldn’t surprise anyone in the least that his lips are firmly clenched on Donald Trump’s posterior. First, it’s now pretty much impossible to get a major GOP nomination if you aren’t sufficiently obsequious to Donald Trump, but also, Dr. Oz’s relationship with Donald Trump has long been what I like to call a “huckster bromance,” exemplified when Trump appeared on The Dr. Oz Show. By April 2020, even New York Times columnist Frank Bruni was writing about the relationship as an “unholy alliance” of pandemic partners, even referring to them as a “match made in ratings-obsessed heaven” as he remembered:

I’ve written about him a few times and kept an eye on him over the years, because back in 2010, when I was a staff writer for The New York Times Magazine, I was assigned an in-depth profile of Oz as a one-man wellness industry. He had just begun his TV show, and I spent hours hanging out with him on the set at 30 Rockefeller Plaza in Manhattan and elsewhere. I even stood just a few feet from him in an operating room at the NewYork-Presbyterian/Columbia University Medical Center in Manhattan as he performed open-heart surgery on a 74-year-old woman. I remember that the white pages of the notebook in which I was scribbling ended up splattered with little red dots.

I also remember thinking again and again that the values of serious science and the values of television were perhaps incompatible. As I watched Oz and his producers try to sex up medicine for what they hoped would be many millions of daytime viewers, I watched him travel toward silliness.

Silliness, indeed. I’d say that his journey is complete. Unfortunately, if there’s one thing that Senators Rand Paul and Ted Cruz, Representatives Louie Gohmert, Lauren Boebert, and Marjorie Taylor Greene—not to mention Donald Trump himself—have shown, it’s that being ridiculous does not mean you will lose. In fact, in the age of MAGA, it seems to be a superpower, particularly when they are sufficiently nasty and science-denying.

By Orac

Orac is the nom de blog of a humble surgeon/scientist who has an ego just big enough to delude himself that someone, somewhere might actually give a rodent's posterior about his copious verbal meanderings, but just barely small enough to admit to himself that few probably will. That surgeon is otherwise known as David Gorski.

That this particular surgeon has chosen his nom de blog based on a rather cranky and arrogant computer shaped like a clear box of blinking lights that he originally encountered when he became a fan of a 35 year old British SF television show whose special effects were renowned for their BBC/Doctor Who-style low budget look, but whose stories nonetheless resulted in some of the best, most innovative science fiction ever televised, should tell you nearly all that you need to know about Orac. (That, and the length of the preceding sentence.)

DISCLAIMER:: The various written meanderings here are the opinions of Orac and Orac alone, written on his own time. They should never be construed as representing the opinions of any other person or entity, especially Orac's cancer center, department of surgery, medical school, or university. Also note that Orac is nonpartisan; he is more than willing to criticize the statements of anyone, regardless of of political leanings, if that anyone advocates pseudoscience or quackery. Finally, medical commentary is not to be construed in any way as medical advice.

To contact Orac: [email protected]

671 replies on “America’s Quack Dr. Oz is running for Senate to become the new Rand Paul”

At least he recognizes the coronavirus death toll and the usefulness of mRNA vaccines, sad as it is to have to say that.

As for quackery, well, some people’s ability to blow off cognitive dissonance over such things amazes me. I guess if you’re given loads of money and fame to do it, it’s easier. “It can’t be inconsistent if people love me and pay me for all of it just the same!”

@space_upstairs: “At least he recognizes the coronavirus death toll and the usefulness of mRNA vaccines, sad as it is to have to say that.”

LOL. You forget, Oz has already got his blame game down pat:

Many of those deaths were preventable. COVID-19 became an excuse for the government and elite thinkers who controlled the means of communication to suspend debate. Dissenting opinions from leading scholars were ridiculed and canceled so their ideas could not be disseminated,

Don’t think he won’t throw vaccination and everything else under the bus too, the moment it’s to his profit.

I’d call Oz a whore, but that would be denigrating an ancient and honest profession that does not deserve lumped in with that grifting turd. At this point I’m more concerned about what it will take for mainstream America to acknowledge the overt fascism now parading in the room. A special on Oprah, perhaps?

Curious readers can look up Dr Oz house Cliffside Park for aerial views of his palazzo… er.. HOME and a PEOPLE magazine article showing interiors. He also has a little place in Palm Beach ( 18M USD) so I suppose he could run there instead if Pennsylvania doesn’t work out.

You may still be able to rent Dr. Oz’s $18 million Palm Beach swankienda, if you can come up with $95K a month, plus a $90K deposit.

Some of that might be needed to pay Oz’s legal bills, as he has filed a lawsuit against his sister over an inheritance.

“Their father, Mustafa Öz, died in 2019. He named his wife and three children as his heirs in 2003. However, he changed his will in 2008 to give all his assets to the Mustafa Öz Foundation in the U.S. He designated Dr. Oz as the person in charge of the foundation.”

“However, Nazlım Suna Öz presented a new will dated 2018 in a lawsuit against Mehmet Öz.”

“Dr. Oz countered with a legal action, claiming that the new will “was a forgery.””

“The lawsuit against the sister calls for her to be imprisoned for forgery and calls for a ban on travel abroad. The complaint also seeks the confiscation of any assets she received as an inheritance…”

“This isn’t the first time the siblings took their apparent conflict over their inheritance to court.”

“In 2019, Dr. Öz filed a complaint against his sister after an alleged stabbing attempt. He filed the complaint at the Istanbul Chief Public Prosecutor’s Office, accusing his sister, whom he said suffers from psychological issues, of threatening to stab him on July 1, 2019…”

“Dr. Öz said he was afraid to enter his house in Istanbul because his sister owns firearms, the report said.”

http://welch.law/why-is-dr-oz-suing-sister-over-inheritance/

Home ownership comes with many responsibilities and headaches.

Thanks for the detailed breakdown. I’m on the fence as to whether having him still on the air or as a US senator will be worse, though I’m thinking senator would be worse. Maybe we will get lucky and an ugly primary campaign will sink him into disgrace? (seems unlikely)

re ” empowering his viewers”
Why is it that alties like those I survey are able to convince their marks that they’re gaining freedom, personal power and independence as they foster dependence upon pseudoscience, untested remedies and outright mimicking of shoddy thought processes like those that they profess with such confidence*?

It’s pathetic to hear a woo-meister misquote/ misspeak and then hear or read his followers say precisely the exact same thing! Lately, I[ve been hearing about how the nurse who fainted on camera after a Covid vaccine, died. Also, that the rate of people becoming ill/ dying of Covid is much higher amongst the vaccinated. I hear this repeatedly and we know about how repetition affects memory as does emotional content. It’s what quacks rely upon.

False hope passes for empowerment, especially for people who have hard- (or impossible)-to-treat health issues. There is more empowerment, of course, in facing and working with harsh realities, as, say, countries that have responded well to covid have shown. But this is counterintuitive for people brought up on “you can do/be anything you want if you try/wish hard enough” and endowed with a self-protective instinct to avoid cognitive dissonance such as “I’m smart yet I fell for bunk” or “I’ve done my best to take care of myself but I’m still sick”.

Can’t wait to see Oz try to convince the GOP’s mouth-breather base that they should support a Muslim as their Senate nominee. Comedy gold right there.

Don’t forget the lurking Swedenborgian Pig Iron Works and Transcendental Meditation.

GOP voters have proven perfectly capable of holding multiple mutually contradictory statements as Truth, so what’s one more when it serves the Greater Purpose?

As for Oz himself, his great wealth and enthusiastic collaboration with both the powerful and the masses just means he’ll be the last to go against the wall, as opposed to the first, so chances are excellent he’ll outlive all the damage done after a fully fascist GOP seizes power.

Oz has already sold out his medical ethics, so I’m sure selling out his religion won’t present any trouble. Besides, pretty sure his only true religion now is Power and Money, same as the rest of that GOP death cult.

Meanwhile, here’s how GOP believers treats Muslim representatives who don’t lick the Party’s boots:

https://www.theroot.com/rep-ilhan-omar-plays-disturbing-voicemail-death-threat-1848144865

Freedom of religion for me but not for thee.

Obligatory.

Interesting that you would get upset at Dr Oz and his two houses. When the executives at Pfizer and Moderna just made a BILLIONS of dollars EACH for a vaccine that doesn’t stop the spread of the virus.

So the fully vaccinated can get the omicron even after 3 shots.

msn.com/en-us/news/us/live-minnesota-health-officials-discuss-states-first-omicron-variant-case/ar-AARosUU

“The patient, who MDH said is vaccinated, developed “mild symptoms” on Nov. 22 and was tested on Nov. 24. The patient got a booster shot in early November.”

And the big grift keeps going on.

@Kay West: “When the executives at Pfizer and Moderna just made a BILLIONS of dollars EACH”

[citation required] (Better grammar wouldn’t hurt either.)

“for a vaccine that doesn’t stop the spread of the virus.”

Nirvana fallacy. Again. Gods you’re boring.

COVID vaccines reduce the chance of infection and greatly reduce the severity. Therefore they slow the spread of the virus. They might even stop it if everyone on the planet was fully vaccinated and taking reasonable precautions: all we need is to achieve an R₀ that is consistently less than 1.0, not a perfect 0 as you liars make out. More infectious variants like Delta and Omicron are not helping that goal, and as long as the virus runs rampant more such mutations will occur, increasing the risk of something really nasty evolving. But sure, burn it all down for your own greater glory. That will totally help.

I do get tired of the Nirvana fallacy. Basically, to antivaxxers, if a vaccine isn’t absolutely, positively 100% safe and effective and/or doesn’t completely block transmission, it’s worthless crap that shouldn’t be used. Yes, current COVID-19 vaccines are not sterilizing immunity vaccines (meaning that they are 100% effective in preventing transmission), but then I can’t think of a vaccine against a respiratory virus that produces sterilizing immunity.

@Orac:

[…] I can’t think of a vaccine against a respiratory virus that produces sterilizing immunity.

Honestly, when you put it that way it seems kind of obvious that such a thing is unlikely to exist. Respiratory illnesses in particular would do much of their reproduction on an exposed bodily surface; the lungs and throat may be inside the body, but they’re still directly exposed to outside air. (It’s kind of the point.) Easy for the virus to get to, and easy for the virus to be physically ejected from so as to spread elsewhere.

This means it’s pretty much a guarantee that the virus will get through at least one round of replication on the first set of cells it interacts with across the surface of the throat before the body’s immune system even recognizes there’s something to respond to. In my obviously non-expert opinion, the only way to have a sterilizing vaccine against a respiratory virus would mean the individual cells in the lining of the throat and lungs would have to be incapable of being suborned by the virus in the first place.

Fire breathing dragons have sterilizing immunity to respiratory viruses. The problem is what to do about all the fire breathing dragons.

When the executives at Pfizer and Moderna just made a BILLIONS of dollars EACH for a vaccine that doesn’t stop the spread of the virus.

Is there something seriously wrong with you? I mean, you struggle to write an English sentence, reliably screw up what you’re presumably trying to communicate, and routinely barf up absolute gibberish as fact.

Some people confuse people and corporations…

Dr Oz is an individual who is worth 100M USD and earns 20M annually. Pfizer and Moderna are companies worth billions consisting of overpaid executives and many investors including institutional ones, such as pensioners and mutual fund holders. My SO has a fund that is predominantly Silicon Valley Tech but has some Moderna ( stock symbol MRNA).

Worth is based upon sales and anticipated sales. Even gossip can affect prices. If the product fails, the stock ( esp Moderna which is focused upon this innovation) can lose money. No one forces you to buy the product or the stock. Anyone with money can invest, buy or sell.. Performance and sales data are easy to obtain.

Oz on the other hand is selling a ephermeral dream. He miseducates people about health and how to live, promising results not consistent with his SBM education, training and experience. He spreads misinformation about illness and treatment. While most of the charlatans I survey do not have a reasonable education in medicine, Oz should know better. He does but he misleads his audience anyway relying upon his valid credentials to sell BS. He didn’t get so rich doing surgery.

Pfizer executive compensation is known:
https://www1.salary.com/PFIZER-INC-Executive-Salaries.html
It is millions (shareholder gains is another thing).
Do you prefer 19/20 possibility win to zero ? Vaccine is not 100% efficient, which does not mean it is 0%.
Quack profits are interesting, because they show that quacks are after your money. Perhpas they lie to get it.

Great article, Orac.
That’s all we need… Oz as a senator…
.
”During the pandemic, I learned that when you mix politics and medicine, you get politics instead of solutions. That’s why I am running for the U.S. Senate: to [introduce more politics into the public health arena under the false idea that I represent the science and not the partisan quackery…] help fix the problems and to help us heal,” Oz wrote.
.
Orac appropriately said, “Yes, carpetbagging is entirely consistent with the Oz ethos, as he’s been a grifter through and through for a very long time, promoting all manner of quackery on The Dr. Oz Show.”
*** Applause ***
Well said, Orac – because carpetbagging is exactly what it is.
Apparently the high and mighty Oz doesn’t have to follow the rules that we mere mortals do.

I am so, so glad that Orac has picked up on this. It’s a total mystery why this dangerous buffoon still has a faculty appointment anywhere and is not under investigation for malpractice. Personal note: I knew Oprah personally in Nashville in the late 70s and early 80s when she was an ambitious correspondent for WSM and was a fellow alumna of TSU. The evidence of her susceptibility to quackeroonies who could give her more exposure was evident even then. I left TSU after a few months when I got another fellowship. Her endorsement of discredited people such as the Dr. Phil incompetent and all her phony little nutritional advisors has been obvious for decades. There’s some kind of kickback deal going on with those sleazes, but this Oz person once earned solid credentials and is now way, way off the sleazy deep end. Why are they so cowardly about cutting him off for this dangerous misinformation to the public?! I don’t get it at all.

The grammar and spelling police are out in force

Denice, lots of people own Pfizer and Moderna. Lots of people have both in their 401k or pensions. I bought Moderna when Dr. Slaoui was appointed to warp speed. The US government gave Moderna lots of free money, they were never going to fail, even if they had never had a marketable product before.

To has, Narad,

As to the idea that the vaccine made billionaires of the upper tier of executives at drug companies I use no less then CNN.

“Covid vaccine profits mint 9 new pharma billionaires”

cnn.com/2021/05/21/business/covid-vaccine-billionaires/index.html

As to the position that the vaccine will slow or stop the spread, the vaccine may make the symptoms less, so people still go out and socialize and spread the virus even more.

“As to the position that the vaccine will slow or stop the spread, the vaccine may make the symptoms less, so people still go out and socialize and spread the virus even more.”

This is an inane statement.

Being vaccinated against Covid-19 makes one far less likely to get infected in the first place, and if there’s a breakthrough infection, transmissibility is less than with an unvaccinated person because the virus is cleared faster.

https://theconversation.com/no-vaccinated-people-are-not-just-as-infectious-as-unvaccinated-people-if-they-get-covid-171302

As to your feeble tu quoque effort, great wealth gained through sleazy activities detrimental to public health is far worse than great wealth attained by saving lives.

If the vaccines are really so terrible, company stocks will plummet and those paper CEO billions will be wiped out, while Oz will continue to harvest $$$ thanks to gullible.folks like you.

@Dangerous Bacon: “As to your feeble tu quoque effort”

Indeed. It’s as if Kay West thinks that her calling something a “big grift” automatically makes it so. It’s genuinely hard to tell if she’s being incompetent or disingenuous (or both).

And while it is true that pharma execs (like everyone else) are not above unethical or dishonest behavior (e.g. price gouging, Vioxx coverup, Shkreli fraud), there is absolutely no evidence of that happening here, nor has Kay West presented any. It’s the market that’s rewarded those execs by raising the value of their shares; it’s not company money to which they’ve helped themselves. Just as the market rewards those of us whose pension pots are partly invested in those companies as well. That’s capitalism working as it should.†

Simultaneously, Kay West is happy to indulge in half-truths, misdirections, innuendo, false accusations, and flat-out lies herself. And while she may be too dim to see the hypocrisy in her own behavior, its irony is not missed by us.

This is why none of us trust antivaxxers or a single word they say without reliable independent confirmation: because they’ve already dug their own personal and professional credibility into a hole so deep I doubt even they could find its bottom any more. Fool us twice…

† While us little folk may find such big-money capitalism distasteful, it’s still infinitely more respectable behavior than Oz’s cash-on-the-barrelhead grift.

I have to disagree that big-money capitalism is “infinitely more respectable behavior than Oz’s cash-on-the-barrelhead grift”.* But the overall morality of the two is hardly the point here. The issue at hand is the relationship between the economic/political practices and efforts to combat the COVID pandemic. The vaccines are by far the best chance we have to get out of this with minimum tragic consequences. Oz is not just selling medical snake-oil, but socio-political poison, shilling for Trumpian fascism. The public health consequences of THAT we can expect to be dire not just in relation to COVID, but any number of other crises down the line.

(The pharmas collectively may well be causing more harm than Oz individually simply by opposing Medicare Rx negotiation, opposing universal health care, etc. Hell, the industry will probably funnel money into his campaign if he gets the nomination, via their associated PACS etc. that back any number of right-wing candidates…)

I was surprised that there was no bulk buy negotiation of pharmaceuticals in the US. That’s some pretty bad behaviour all round and presumably grift on the part of politicians too?

“so people still go out and socialize and spread the virus even more”

Thus creating all the naturally acquired immunity that you guys idolise.

@Kay West: “As to the idea that the vaccine made billionaires of the upper tier of executives at drug companies I use no less then CNN.”

Thank you for the clarification and referencing your sources so we can check for ourselves. Because when you said “the executives at Pfizer and Moderna just made a BILLIONS of dollars EACH”, you made it sound like they were just paid billions of dollars, which is not the case. What has happened is that these companies’ shares, of which their execs own a portion, have recently gained a lot of value, because the market has decided those companies are now worth a lot more than they were a few years ago, based on recent and projected performance (profit and growth). You might not be a fan of capitalism (and there is plenty about it that is distasteful), but that’s how it works; there’s nothing untoward going on here.

So, a half-truth designed to cast a negative light and encourage misinterpretation and false stories. Congrats, you’re improving. Perhaps one day you’ll be able to state just the facts, and let others reach their own conclusions without you trying to bias them with manipulative language.

@Kay West: “As to the position that the vaccine will slow or stop the spread, the vaccine may make the symptoms less, so people still go out and socialize and spread the virus even more.”

Of course. That’s human nature and one of the reasons we see “waves”. You state this as if it were something we weren’t aware of. (There’s a reason I qualified “fully vaccinated” with “and reasonable precautions”.) But what’s your point? Are you saying people should get sick as dogs from the virus to stop them socializing? Or what?

The problem I have here is that I don’t see you antivaxxers saying or doing anything to discourage these thoughtless, selfish, reckless social behaviors which we know spread the disease; while saying and doing quite a bit to encourage it. Furthermore, some of you even seem to take great pride and pleasure in seeing infection rates skyrocket—perhaps because it validates your inherent superiority seeing so many untermensch sicken and die around you?

Okay, so here’s an idea: instead of you endlessly criticising what everyone else is doing, why don’t you formalise your own antivax policies in writing so everyone can understand your end goals and milestones, and convince us how your proposal will yield better outcomes than any other. Otherwise we can assume the reason you are sniping at absolutely everything else is to hide the fact that you don’t have any answers to offer yourself, and weigh your contribution accordingly.

” …while saying and doing quite a bit to encourage it.”
That’s what I’ve noticed too- from Del’s ” Let’s all catch this cold!” to advocacy against masks, PH measures and OBVIOUSLY vaccines, they promote disease by minimising its seriousness, over-rating “natural” immunity ( which is highly variable). and promoting going back to “normalcy” as soon as possible.

Even before news about Omicron, I was worried because colder weather and the holidays were coming in Europe and N. America.: people are indoors more, they interact with family/ friends more and possibly travel. Some people have a strange notion that because you “like” someone or they’re close family, they can’t POSSIBLY infect you with Covid.

The other day I found a statement about how likely people were to have a positive test result, get hospitalised or die if vaccinated but I can’t find it now so I won’t quote based on memory alone (Gov Murphy, Monday) – let’s just say that it’s nowhere near what scoffers suggest: it’s very low odds.

I couldn’t find the article I saw previously but here’s the CDC, today:
breakthrough Covid in fully vaccinated 0.863% ( all rounded to 3 decimal places)
in hospitals 0.0611%
who died 0.021%

Not what pseudoscientists would have you think.

An odd thing to do considering his quackery is now his primary selling point, especially for this audience. But then, no-one could ever accuse Republican grifters of consistency†.


† A TV celebrity personally worth $100 MILLION ranting about “the elites”? Please! (Of course, the rubes will still lap it up and beg for more—and he knows it too. Grift all the way down.)

I just noticed that the background for Dr Oz is L’Oreal perhaps he might serve as a spokesmodel for them- virtually no grey hair at age 61. It could be all of the organic food and yoga but I doubt it. A subliminal message to followers: “I live right and look great! So can you!” -btw- it’s a much more professional dye job than another woo-meister I can name. It may be petty saying so but it’s merely another way of misleading viewers about natural health and extended youth.

This is not the first time Dr. Oz has tried to hide the evidence of his quackery, although it is the most extensive.

Didier Raoult has been… ahem… cough… cough… cough… sanctioned. Officially.

He won’t have sweets for desert.

I’m not the kind of person to promote the death penalty, far from it, but, honestly, when “sanctions” are so weak, we may just as well offer Didier Raoult a poney and a blowjob. Au nom du peuple français.

I believe a post would be in order to set the record straight concerning that appalling level of leniency. Which I believe to be outright morally condemnable.

Sick and tired of these kind of free pass to promote medical nonsense and, in the end, kill on the grounds of an ideology.

Sick and tired of fanaticism.

Preach it, mate. Science is a human institution and, as such, will always be subject to human frailties. But if science can’t maintain integrity despite that then it doesn’t have squat. All the more reason why scientists must keep their own house in good order; because if they won’t/don‘t/can’t do it, who can?

@ has

“All the more reason why scientists must keep their own house in good order; because if they won’t/don‘t/can’t do it, who can?”

Problem is Raoult is not only a “scientist”. He’s a civil servant.

The question is not about scientists keeping their house in order.

It’s about the government having the monopoly on how “scientists” are “keeping their house in order”.

The “ordre des médecins”, i.e. the medical board, is in itself a de jure administrative body. i.e. part of the state.

When Leonid Schneider questioned the university in Marseille on which Raoult’s institution depends, he was surprised to discover that a governmental body such as a french university (they all are state controlled and professors are civil servants with free speech curtailed by the “devoir de réserve”) does not feel obliged in any way to answer to him.

Because it only answers to the state. Not to civil society.

“There is a new book out titled: “Raoult A French Madness“. It is about Didier Raoult, microbiology professor, chloroquine guru, director of IHU Marseille and misogynous bully. But if you expected a scandal, a charlatan mandarin shamed and exposed for what he really is – I must disappoint you, this is France after all, and Raoult is still a national hero, admired and protected across all political spectra. His entire career was built on inherited privilege, delusion of grandeur, narcissism, dishonesty, bullying, metrics fetish, questionable research practices of all kinds, parochial and nepotist structure of French academia, and political buddy networks from left to the far-right. Raoult, an abysmally inept caricature of a conceited male scientist, seems to be a symptom of a national and a nationalistic psychosis, and will only go away when France snaps out of it. I’m not saying that because IHU yesterday publicly announced to report me to police, in a statement most obviously written by Raoult himself 😉” — Leonid Schneider

I’m starting to wonder whether or not civil society even exists in France.

Nepotic society with a guru mentality and a militarised nanny state fetish.

Makes me want to puke in the vineyard

@F68: “It’s about the government having the monopoly on how “scientists” are “keeping their house in order”.”

For that, I must redirect you to the citizenry. If government is out of control then that is their fault and their job to correct. And if they’re not doing so… well, y’all have a Very Great Problem indeed.

This is why good public science communication is so vital—for without popular understanding of how science works and what it is up to, it is impossible for the rest of us to determine if it is working correctly or if it is being abused from inside and/or outside its house. I suspect many scientists are deeply inexperienced and feel very uneasy doing this, and would much rather remain in their comfort zone if they can. But that is a fatal long-term error if good science is to endure. Science needs its children too.

To quote Ben Franklin again: “It is the first responsibility of every citizen to question authority.”

And though cranks and ideologues will loudly proclaim that this is precisely what they are doing, they do not get to claim its ownership nearly so easily…for they cannot but betray themselves with one fatal “tell”:

Of all the authorities they claim to be questioning, there is one which of necessity remains inviolate: their own.

#Deicide. It’s the only way to roll.

@ has

“For that, I must redirect you to the citizenry. If government is out of control then that is their fault and their job to correct. And if they’re not doing so… well, y’all have a Very Great Problem indeed.”

The French do not think that way. The French think that the government is the citizenry, and that people not in the administration have no right to have a say.

You’ll have many Great Thinkers in France who keep arguing that “The People is Sovereign but does not Govern”. In a nutshell, we have a right to clap or boo, but not to speak.

Any citizen involvement in public affairs is systematically clamped down upon. It’s the State or nothing else. And if you want to have a say, you must become a civil servant. Before age 21, because, otherwise, you won’t have a decent enough ranking in your entrance exams as a civil servant to have a right to be taken seriously.

The french model is precisely that of a government that is out of control. By design.

The only way to control the government is by the administration: no spoil system; can never fire a civil servant (i.e. cannot fire Raoult), and, therefore, government may only be controlled by its own administration. Because it can’t fire civil servants. At all. The unfireability of civil servants is the cornerstone of the french vision of checks and balance. Independent judiciary ? Forget about it. Free speech ? Forget about it. Unfireability of civil servants ? Yah !! Kudos !!

But… citizenry ? Nah… that’s not the US, around here.

Being a “citizen” means voting every 5 years. Nothing more, nothing less. It has never meant “having a say in public affairs” around here. To have a say, you have to be part of the Republic. Civil servants are part of the Republic. Citizens are not: they are merely voters. And not part of the Republic.

It’s not an open system. But a closed one. Which is why you cannot project US attitudes about citizenry to a system that has been designed to precisely forbid that.

Which is why Raoult has a free pass. As Leonid Schneider discovered: the nepotic and parocchial structure of state-controlled french academia, where political ties matter more than the work being really done. BTW: can’t fire university professors too: they’re civil servants…

Bwahahahaha !!!

“La chambre disciplinaire de l’ordre des médecins sanctionne le microbiologiste pour avoir vanté la molécule, dont l’efficacité n’a jamais été démontrée, mais rejette l’accusation de « charlatanisme ».”

“The medical board’s disciplinary administrative court sanctioned the microbiologist (a.k.a. Didier Raoult) for having promoted the molecule, whose efficacy has never been proved, but rejects the accusation of “charlatanisme” [i.e. not a crank].”

State Science… at its best.

What matters is not that Raoult behaved like a crank. No, no, no, no…

What matters is that he promoted an unproven molecule.

But he’s not a crank. No, no, no, no…

No one has a right to call anyone a crank in France. Gets you sued by the medical board’s disciplinary administrative state-sanctionned court. As happened for FakeMed when they claimed that homeopathy does not work.

In fact, no one cares whether or not Raoult is a crank.

What matters is that Raoult spoke up. What matters is to discipline doctor’s free speech. What matters is that they do not cast disrepute over Medicine, the modern replacement of Religion, our Only Hope of Salvation. That’s the cardinal medical sin in France.

But being a crank is not a sin. That’s what the judgement means. Because no doctor may be a crank as long he has a piece of paper proving he went through his exams.

Bottom line: I will have to defend Raoult’s free speech. Because, officially, he’s not a crank.

If he gets declared a crank, then I will not defend his free speech.

For now, the State says that he has the right to shut down the free speech of someone who is not a crank. Not acceptable. No way.

Interesting comparison.

Most readers of this post are home owners,
During the house hunting, most people get pre-qualfied. They are provided with loan agreements (average 75 pages) and an addendum that contains, for lack of a better term ‘cliff notes” version of the loan, all the documents are legally binding on the lender. Most home hunters look over the paper work and especially the ‘cliff notes”. People are made aware of the payments, taxes and related fees and monthly payments. An independent third party reviews the documents BEFORE the buyer signs the loan agreement and goes over with the borrower and answers any and all questions These people who ask questions and review all the documents are considered ‘smart consumers”. The lender is under federal control and subject to lawsuits if they misrepresents any document

But the same consumer using the same amount of caution and being a “smart consumer”, if they are to want additional information regarding the vaccine, are met with derision, ridicule and name calling, and the information the FDA used to approve the vaccine will take 35 years to be fully released. A third party, independent reviewer (that can explain the results) does not exist. The provider of the vaccine does not need to provide any information on make up of the vaccine or the results of the clinical trials. On top of that the vaccine makers are exempt from lawsuits until 2024.

“In February, Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar invoked the Public Readiness and Emergency Preparedness Act. The 2005 law empowers the HHS secretary to provide legal protection to companies making or distributing critical medical supplies, such as vaccines and treatments, unless there’s “willful misconduct” by the company. The protection lasts until 2024.”
cnbc.com/2020/12/16/covid-vaccine-side-effects-compensation-lawsuit.html

An to the people who question the 9 new billionaires, and comparing it to pay, what they get is stock options which are better than regular pay. Regular pay is taxed at 36% on the margin but a stock option pay is taxes at the capitol gains rate of 20-25%.

I went the conventional route when I bought my first house by trusting the bank and the government to play fair. I had no choice, since I have neither the education, interest or expertise to second-guess lawyers, financial officers and government regulators.

What a fool I was. If I had only searched on line, I could have found out about declaring myself a Sovereign Citizen and got my house for free! Not only that, I wouldn’t even need to pay property taxes!

At least, that’s what some internet rando tells me. It’s on the internet, so it must be true.

An to the people who question the 9 new billionaires, and comparing it to pay, what they get is stock options

Do you ever get tired of pretending to know things? Y’know, like 50% mortality from having an abortion? (Did you every return to that one?)

The quoted text above is completely idiotic. Stock options have no value until exercised. The paper wealth (from May, but I’m sure it took you a while to scrape it off your shoe, or forehead, whatever) is a result of share appreciation, but you apparently can’t control yourself.

@Elderly John:

You should remember that we’re all getting Big Cheques from Big Pharma and Big Medicine. Which allows us all to buy Big Houses.

“An to the people who question the 9 new billionaires, and comparing it to pay, what they get is stock options which are better than regular pay.”

Well now, that’s interesting.

My understanding of stock options is relatively primitive, but it isn’t the same thing as being handed a big chunk of stock. What it means is that you are given an opportunity to buy stock in the company at the current stock price at a later time, and if shares have gone up in value by that time, you’re paying less than market value which can be a considerable advantage. If you’re receiving billions in stock options, that implies that you are still going to need quite a chunk of cash to buy in. The “People’s Vaccine Alliance” doesn’t indicate whether their claims of paper vaccine billionaires are based on receipt of options or actual company stock (I don’t see any documentation of their allegations in the press release). Even if the CEOs actually became worth billions on paper, that doesn’t mean they can easily sell their holdings and retire filthy rich.

From the executive compensation consultant firm Semmler Brossy:

“…executive officers generally start from a position that they cannot sell company stock, at least not easily. consider that to do so: First, they must be in compliance with their company’s own share ownership guidelines or retention and holding requirements. Second, they can’t act unless they are within an approved trading window (especially difficult for acquisition-oriented companies who may rarely have an open window). third — and often the toughest, especially for many ceos and cFos — there is a strongly held belief that any selling will signal to the market a weakening of confidence in the future.”

If I suddenly became worth billions of dollars because my company fooled everyone into thinking it had produced a valuable vaccine but that alert antivaxers were about to convince everyone of the Truth, I’d do my utmost to sell out while the getting was good and buy that island in the Bahamas. But I doubt we’ll see that happening.

Bottom line: this is more of Kay pontificating about something of which she’s ignorant, in an attempt to hide Emperor Oz’s lack of clothing.

‘My understanding of stock options is relatively primitive, but it isn’t the same thing as being handed a big chunk of stock. ‘

Correct. Example: my wife was a statistician at UpJohn (UpJohn/Pharmacia , Pharmacia, Pfizer) and received stock options in her final years before all research (mostly, but all statisticians) was shut down in Kalamazoo/Portage. It was not stock, and there was a time limit built in before she could exercise them. The problem was that by the time she could have used them the company stock was far below what it was when they were offered.

So yeah, K West is full of shit — but that’s what anti-vaccers are.

@DB:

Bottom line: this is more of Kay pontificating about something of which she’s ignorant, in an attempt to hide Emperor Oz’s lack of clothing.

Kay West couldn’t give two shits about Oz. All Kay West cares about is venting her monomania, making every discussion rotate around her. And credit where due: she has done a pretty good job on us too.

8/10. Distract, Deflect, Redirect, Control. Congrats, Kay, you manipulative weasel, on your new high score.

I was going to rant about this bullshit going down in my state, but he would actually be an improvement over Toomey.

Of course, that’s a very low bar. Like, REALLY low. I can’t come up with a metaphor that would really illustrate how low that bar is.

But I’ll still be working to put a Democrat in that seat.

Public health measures to fight the pandemic are a vicious plot to create a “pathologized-totalitarian utopia”, and we are justified in responding with violence. That according to C.J. Hopkins who has a guest piece up on Mercola’s website, at least until Joe disappears it down the 48-hour memory hole. Excerpts:

“And a lot of us are angry, extremely angry … militantly, explosively angry.”

“We are not “vaccine hesitant” or “anti-vax” or “Covid-denying conspiracy theorists.” We are millions of regular working-class people, people with principles, who value freedom, who are not prepared to go gently into the globalized, pathologized-totalitarian night.

“We no longer give the slightest sh*t whether our former friends and family members who have gone New Normal understand what this is. We do. We understand exactly what this is. It is a nascent form of totalitarianism, and we intend to kill it — or at least critically wound it — before it matures into a full-grown behemoth.”

“Now, I want to be absolutely clear. I am not advocating or condoning violence. But it is going to happen…
Fighting totalitarianism inevitably entails violence. It is not my preferred tactic in the current circumstances, but it is unavoidable now that we’ve reached this stage, and it is important that those of us fighting this fight recognize that violence is a natural response to the violence (and the implicit threat of violence) that is being deployed against us by the New Normal authorities, and the masses they have whipped up into a fanatical frenzy…
This remaking of society is violent. It is being carried out by force, with violence and the ever-present threat of violence. We need to face that, and act accordingly.”

There’s a lot of additional frothing at the mouth and Nazi analogies, but the I’m-not-advocating-violence-but-we’re-gonna-have-to-be-violent dodge is the best part.

It’s not the nuttiest thing I’ve seen today, however. Mike Adams speculating that the Omicron variant is actually the cure for Covid-19 takes that prize.

There’s a lot of additional frothing at the mouth and Nazi analogies, but the I’m-not-advocating-violence-but-we’re-gonna-have-to-be-violent dodge is the best part.

You know it. Most of them are too cowardly to take the first shot, but that’s fine: they only need to rile the most unhinged of them to act out. That action then provides the rest of them with the permission they require to follow. Thus yesterday’s extreme becomes today’s New Normal. It is a well-worn, historically proven tactic, and it starts with controlling the rhetoric that frames their enemies as murderous Nazis with not even an ounce of irony. Because they are the victims, y’all.

See also: DARVO. All of these abuse mechanisms are well understood and copiously documented, so none of them have any excuse for not doing their homework. They don’t see it because they don’t want to know. And that is how even good people become Good Germans: very, very easily.

At least two of you are some what ignorant of the process. If someone is given stock options, for a an example 1,000 as of the 10 December 2021 stock price (this is the set price, some companies will set the option price at below market value.

The person receiving the option does not have to pay for the stock at the time the stock options were issued. The person receiving the stock option must hold the stock for a set time (usual practice is 180 days) but most people hold the stock longer in hopes it goes up (idw56old, your wife should have cashed out or sold the option to a 3rd party before the price fell below the set price, or you wife could have exercised the stock option (at a loss) and taken the tax write off, an accountant would have advised you what to do, rather then what you stupidly did.

Now these execs at the drug companies, don’t out right own millions of shares of company stock, but they can choose to sell these stock anytime after the set time (see above) the company set aside these shares in their books. The person who were given the stock options do not have to come up with the cash to buy the shares, they only need to sell the shares and pay the company back from the proceeds of the sale, then pay capitol gains on the sale of the difference in the purchase date cost and the sale date cost. If they chose to leave the company they can then purchase how ever many shares at the set price, most bank or investment brokers will gladly loan the money in these cases as they hold the stock as collateral.

And as Kay pointed out the tax on capitol gains is 20% while most income at that level is 36% on the margins. Most people are too uniformed to understand that W-2 income is for the average Joe. High income earners pay little income tax as they know the loopholes, just ask Warren Buffett.

Aside from your misunderstanding of how the process works, there still has been no documentation provided of what if anything the execs at Moderna et al did with the alleged stock options and what their actual worth is.

This remains a feeble diversion from the subject at hand: a quackery-promoting, publicity-seeking M.D. making millions off dangerous health advice, and running for a Senate seat for which he is grossly unqualified.

Try addressing that.

@DB: “This remains a feeble diversion from the subject at hand”

QFT. Kay West is really licking the bottom of the barrel in desperation. Hardly the killer blows she tells herself she’s landing.

Meantime, other people still dying.

@Ed: Nobody cares. If Pfizer and Moderna execs did something criminal then prove it using evidence, not smear tactics. Otherwise, it is 100% irrelevant. The discussion here is pseudomedical fraudsters and your lame attempts to derail it only prove your own corruption.

Orac HATES any form of holistic natural healing, and any form of mysticism/spirituality. I mean HATES. I didn’t know anything about Dr. Oz before reading this article, since I don’t have a TV. I didn’t see anything here to make me hate him, or to think he’s a quack. Some people think it’s better to prevent chronic diseases with natural remedies and nutrition, rather than wait until you need surgery and toxic drugs. Wonder why Orac sees that as villainous quackery.

And his wife practices reiki, oh the horror! How the heck does Orac know if reiki works for some people or not? Just because it isn’t approved by the FDA and CDC, and the big drug companies haven’t spent millions researching it?

No, Orac, maintaining health doesn’t have to involve toxic drugs or surgery. Sometimes they are needed, but disease can often be prevented. And no, mysticism and spirituality are not stupid, just because you don’t happen to have any spiritual beliefs. You have a right to your worldview, but you don’t have a right to trash anyone who sees things differently. I doubt you have ever for one second tried to understand eastern mysticism. Have you?

How the heck does Orac know if reiki works for some people or not?

Explain the history and purported mechanism behind reiki.

Did you know that, in 1998, an eleven year old girl carried out a blinded test on therapeutic touch practitioners in America? She simply prevented them from seeing if their hands were in position over a person’s arm of not. The results showed that they couldn’t detect the human ‘energy field’ that is an essential principle of their discipline. The study was so simple and effective that it was even published.

Much like electrosensitives cannot detect electric fields in properly blinded experiments. Dowsing practitioners cannot detect water underground in controlled circumstances etc etc. Acupuncture ‘works’ even if the needles are in completely the wrong place or don’t penetrate the skin.

I’m afraid that you are falling for the standard alt med mantra that there’s nothing to gain so it’s not worth investigating. In fact almost every eastern or mystic healing methodology HAS been tested and has been found wanting. There is no need for expensive studies and years of research. Just ones that test the central premise.

The best you can hope for is a good placebo effect. My partner had acupuncture for a while. She usually felt better after a session but it never helped anything in the long run.

Please don’t mention pyramids, crystals, copper bracelets or wrist magnets. Worldview is irrelevant. A hammer works the same for me as it does for a Tibetan monk. Anything that only works if you believe in it is wishful thinking.

Oh yes, I know, one little experiment negated all the millions of experiences people had with all forms of energy healing. Are you aware that medical research doesn’t work that way?

How the heck does Orac know if reiki works for some people or not?

Pretty easy really. There is no possible mechanism of how it could work. Coupled with this there is plenty of research showing reiki is not effective for dozens of conditions.

There is NO possible mechanism IF you are devoted to the philosophy of “materialism,” or “naturalism.” IF you are an atheist and deny all forms of spirituality. Then, of course, their could be no possible mechanism.

There is NO possible mechanism IF you are devoted to the philosophy of “materialism,” or “naturalism.”

As opposed to the philosophy of “evasionism”?

There is NO possible mechanism IF you are devoted to the philosophy of “materialism,” or “naturalism.” IF you are an atheist and deny all forms of spirituality. Then, of course, their could be no possible mechanism.

What is the mechanism otherwise?

Pretty easy really. There is no possible mechanism of how it could work.

Sure there is. “The” problem is that Indie Rebel seems to want to take occultism to the next “level.” (This isn’t so surprising in the context of Reiki, in which one essentially pays to climb the ladder to learn the magic mudras.* At least it’s– McPozzm–just petty crime, as opposed to, e.g., Scientology.)

It’s too bad, really, that I.R. is such a poor sportsman as to just up and change tack, because what’s really going on is an attempt not just to gain “powers,” i.e., haul mind across the great dualist crevasse to do the dishes and so forth.**

*Note the hydraulics invoked here.

**It seems like a backward approach to achieving immortality, but whatever.

@Indie Rebel: If only you could see the excruciating irony inherent in your screen name, you would shrivel in embarrassment. So perhaps it is safest for your ego that you apparently suffer no self-awareness at all.

But okay, let’s play:

Atheism is simply the Null Hypothesis applied to religion. There are—what—seven billion people on this planet who believe in gods. The problem is: they all believe in different gods. The Hindus believe in one lot of gods; the Abrahamists believe in another; the Buddhists different ones again. All of these belief systems are mutually incompatible; therefore, how can they possibly ALL be right?

Resolving this is a trivial logic problem, btw; absolutely no deep specialist knowledge of individual religions required.

So here are the solutions I have been able to think of myself:

You admit that you choose one of these systems to be true and reject all others as false because you want to believe that, OR
You declare that there is no such thing as truth and everything is a fiction (including your own experience), OR
You assert that all of these belief systems are equally false until and unless such time as one of them can be proven otherwise.

Now, if you can think of additional options then you are welcome to propose them. But in the end you must either choose one and stand by it, or admit you are too cowardly to do so. And since two of the above them will reveal you as hopelessly compromised in other ways, if you must choose of them then you’ll be wise to shut up so you don’t embarrass yourself thereafter. Otherwise, you pick the only answer that is logically consistent; and though that answer may make you feel uncomfortable and all alone in the universe, you can at least be assured that the universe doesn’t care how you feel in the slightest (so you can only go upwards from there).

And while you’re pondering which of the above doors is yours, consider this: even science is predicated on a fundamental belief, or assumption: that the universe does not lie. Because if a god can literally stop the Earth rotating in space then all of science is just another fiction which cannot be trusted any more than any other arbitrary belief system.

What differentiates science from all your other belief systems: that science tests god every single day. All any god has to do is to make the apple fall upwards instead of down, and scientists will accept the existence of god’s hand at work (and no doubt then spend the rest of eternity enthusiastically arguing about which of your claimed gods that hand actually belongs to). Until then, the initial predicate holds; and in the meantime we get antibiotics, microwave ovens, and the atomic bomb—which rather points to science working as expected. Evidence, y’all.

Likewise, what differentiates us from you is not the target or strength of our scientific belief, but how that belief is arrived at (by weighing ALL currently available evidence) and what is permitted to change that belief (new and better evidence which contradicts it). Religious beliefs are that which are preached by authority figures and embraced by those who want to believe. And they reject those beliefs at their peril. Scientific beliefs are that which are constantly tested to destruction by those who know there’s a Nobel prize in it if they prove them wrong; and still, in face of that endless onslaught, have yet to fall.

Which is to say: if you’re absolutely determined to come at science, you really need to understand just what it is you’re coming for. Because science not only endures your attacks, it also survives its own. And science is way better at doing it than you are.

“If you know the enemy and know yourself, you need not fear the result of a hundred battles. If you know yourself but not the enemy, for every victory gained you will also suffer a defeat. If you know neither the enemy nor yourself, you will succumb in every battle.”—Sun Tzu

@Indie rebel You are claiming that reiki has material effects. So explain interaction with material objects

@Indie Rebel: You really are a flying fuckwit, aren’t you. “Eastern mysticism”? Same as Western mysticism; only the names of things change. It’s ALL irrational belief systems, sold and embraced by those who want to feel Speciaaaaaaaal without doing any of the hard work to actually earn that status.

Well guess what, sparky: nobody here is interested in what you believe, only what you can prove. And all you’ve proved to date is that you’re a steaming moron, whose only achievement in life is babbling incoherently about things you do not understand and do not wish to learn either.

So if all you want to do with your life is blow yourself, go ahead. Just have the common fricking decency to go away and do it in private so that we aren’t made to watch.

Actually, I take it back. Worldview isn’t completely irrelevant. There are things that people perceive differently due to their worldview. I’ve read that vanilla is perceived as sweeter in the West than it is in the East (although it is used in savoury recipes in the West). However, perception is subjective. Subjective or objective. Effects can be measured. If acupuncture makes you happier then good for you. Doesn’t mean it’ll cure cancer so pay for it out of your own wallet.

Interesting thing is that you think everything a “holistic” quack says must be true. What if he lies for his book ? Why do you think his ads are more truthful than others ?That is why somebody ask for proofs. This is hardly a form of hate. Call it consumer protection.,

I know nothing about Dr. Oz, and he may be a con artist for all I know. What I object to is Orac’s hatred of any kind of spiritual beliefs or healing. And I especially object to his denial that natural prevention of disease is better than drugs and surgery.

@Indie Rebel: “What I object to is Orac’s hatred of any kind of spiritual beliefs or healing.”

Oh dear, you are dismally slow. So exactly part of the following continues to escape you:

Either Show Us Your Evidence or Go Fuck Yourself.

Do you need shorter words? Drawn in crayon? What? Tell us so we can help you to understand. It should not be that hard.

“And I especially object to his denial that natural prevention of disease is better than drugs and surgery.”

Oh look. Yet another great fucking cloud of useless timewasting straw. You goddamn bore. Stop insulting our intelligence. If you’re only here to troll, at least do us the decency of trolling competently. Ass.

What I object to is Orac’s hatred of any kind of spiritual beliefs or healing.

Note the clever conflation of spiritual beliefs with “healing.” No, “Indie Rebel,” the two are not the same, and one can reject quackery without having contempt or hatred for spiritual beliefs.

@Indie Rebel What you mean with natural ? Supplements and diets ? There are actually clinical trials about these. Results are not good.
Biological plausibility counts, too, Explain why natural healing should work,

@ Orac

“No, “Indie Rebel,” the two are not the same, and one can reject quackery without having contempt or hatred for spiritual beliefs.”

Which is precisely why my psychiatrist mom tried to section her sister as soon as she heard she went to buddhist lessons. 30 years ago. Things went kinetic. Because buddhism = psychosis. Of course. Everyone knows that buddhism = psychosis. It’s written black on white in more medical texts than I’d care to quote. At least in french.

In practice, I’ve heard way too many conflations of rejecting quackery as a front for religious intolerance in medical circles. Way too many. So, while, yes, it’s true and well and right that one can reject quackery without diving into bigotry, I’ve witnessed it going the other way round time and time again. Way too often. So I’m not buying it anymore.

These aren’t droids you are looking for. He can go about out business. “Move along”.

It always starts off with an unfounded and shocking statement and just gets more theatrical from there. And let’s not forget the outrage to ignore the point of the article.

. . . How the heck does Orac know if reiki works for some people or not? . . .

I suggest you use your magnificent internet skills and search this site for articles about it, as well as Science Based Medicine. For the short version of an important piece of evidence, you should do a search for the venerable scientist, Emily Rosa.

I know all about the Emily Rosa experiment, and I have read SBM for many years. I know all about their materialist/naturalist/atheist philsophy.

The Rosa experiment was typical — “proving” something does not work with an underpowered defective experiment. It is WELL KNOWN by most experimental researchers that we do NOT accept the null hypothesis based on one experiment anyway. And we certainly do NOT assume an experiment with a small N is adequately powered and reliable.

Yet the Emily Rosa experiment is considered definitive proof by the atheist/materialists.

You think all forms of energy and information have already been discovered. You are sure about that. Everyone who differs must be ignorant and unscientific. Well no, it is people like you who have no real understanding of experimental science.

If you’re claiming that “energy healing” works, you need to point to the studies/clinical trials that demonstrate it exists and has value, not nitpick what research has been done while waving the “prove me wrong!” banner.

I have also read articles on SBM for years and never seen anything promoting “materialism” or “atheism”.* I suppose the charge of “naturalism” has some validity if it’s defined as understanding how things work through science, but it’s not the curse word you imagine.

*you forgot to mention satanism.

It is WELL KNOWN by most experimental researchers that we do NOT accept the null hypothesis based on one experiment anyway.

There goes another example of things I.R. doesn’t understand.

@Indie Rebel, you tedious tool. If you wish to claim the existence of heretoward undiscovered “energies”, the burden of proof is 100% yours. Either figure out for yourself how you can generate more compelling evidence than a 9 year-old child and go and frigging DO IT, or honestly admit your position is 100% a religious one; not grounded in evidence or science or anything else except your desperate pathetic cloying need to believe you are Speciaaaaaal.

So if you want to blather about “N”, here’s another N you should reflect on first. Because a great many far smarter more educated people than you have been completely utterly humiliatingly wrong about pretty much everything ever said or believed before you; and if that doesn’t give you pause for thought then you are even more unsalvageably foolish than we already take you for. You can lie to yourself if you want, but don’t spit in our faces by trying to lie to us. Because you absolutely suck at it.

“You think all forms of energy and information have already been discovered. You are sure about that”

No idea. Irrelevant.

Repeat after me. IF IT HAS AN OBJECTIVE EFFECT THEN IT CAN BE MEASURED. If you claim that a mysterious form of radiation is curing a particular condition, then you can prove that the condition is being cured. There is no such thing as a cure for a disease that only works if you believe it does. Your con artist fools in the alt med world usually claim to detect these mystery rays with their hands or with electronic equipment which they’ve knocked up in a garage. It can’t be that difficult to detect then can it?

You think all forms of energy and information have already been discovered.

Define “energy.”

“Yet the Emily Rosa experiment is considered definitive proof by the atheist/materialists”

Actually, it’s main impact is that a pre-teen proved that a bunch of adults were unable to distinguish fact from fiction.

Don’t worry though. That experiment was only one handful of dirt on the coffin of energy healing.

The Rosa experiment was typical — “proving” something does not work with an underpowered defective experiment.

It was a simple but effective test of the basis of so-called energy medicine. The “healers” couldn’t detect life energy (or whatever the hell it’s called) hidden from sight any better than chance. That’s the metaphorical equivalent of: “They couldn’t find their asses with both hands, a map and a flashlight.”

How about you propose an experiment that proves that this heretofore undetected “energy” exists?T There’s a Nobel Prize awaiting you if you succeed.

I know that lots of people believe in reiki. What I don’t understand is how you can get Mehmet Oz, BS from Harvard, MD from U Penn, MBA from Wharton, 8 years at uni, God knows how many years in residence, etc, who has put in all that time, sweat, study and ends up paired up with reiki, which you can learn on a weekend retreat. How can he even stand it?

Unfortunately, doctors are not immune to magical thinking. I found that out 16 years ago when I started encountering so many doctors who denied evolution or were antivaccine.

Who said you can learn all about reiki in a weekend. And even if you could, what has that got to do with anything. I have NO opinion on Dr. Oz, and he might be a scammer for all I know. But the fact that he agrees with some alternative medicine ideas in no way invalidates his medical expertise. Lots of medical professionals have some alternative medicine beliefs. It’s only absolutists like this blog’s author who are crazed with hatred of anything that disagrees with atheism/materialism/naturalism.

(And calling yourselves naturalists makes no sense at all. We all believe in nature.)

Side effects of Reiki Level 1 Attunement

The attunement side effects of Reiki level 1 are mostly physical, due to the detoxing of your body and because it’s the first time you increase your vibration. Most negative side effects are part of the Reiki Healing Crisis which is not so common to happen after an attunement, but it has happened to some people.

It’s only absolutists like this blog’s author who are crazed with hatred of anything that disagrees with atheism/materialism/naturalism.

I think it’s clear who the “crazed” one here is, Toonces.

http://www.cnn.com/2015/04/17/health/dr-oz-columbia-letter/

medcitynews.com/2015/04/physicians-feel-dr-oz-81-percent-think-resign-columbia-license-revoked/

http://www.ranker.com/list/dr-oz-is-fake/donn-saylor

(And calling yourselves naturalists makes no sense at all. We all believe in nature.)

I guess it’s a good thing, then, that you are the only one doing it.

I understand that Lisa Oz had a significant role in Oz’s embrace of alternative medical practices.

@Chris Preston: Oz’s wife may have been the one who sold it to him. But Oz was the one who chose to embrace it and propagate it to millions more. And it’s easy to guess why.

Pleasing lies vs painful truths. We are all susceptible. We all feel the temptation. We are all prone to personal weakness. And the one fundamental choice which each of us has is whether to indulge it or to push back.

You can infer much about a person just from knowing which of these choices they’ve made. Understand how and why they’ve arrived at that choice, see how they explain and justify it to themselves and others, and you will know their soul.

I’ve done the first…and lost almost everything to it. More than once. So now I do the other, and work to maintain it for as long I draw breath. To break it now, knowing the harm I can cause, would be to betray myself—and, infinitely worse, betray others as well. And that I will not do. For as flawed and toxic as I am, I maintain that absolute moral core which says harming others for ego and money is Wrong; and I’d forfeit life than sell it out. That’s my choice.

So when I call Oz and Kay and Kennedy Jr and Indie Rebel and all their ilk “abusive scum”, I do not do it to feel superior to them. I do it because I know myself. And in these people I see all the worst parts of me—except celebrated and championed as virtues, not damned and despised to be driven right out. They are the abusers, because they choose to make themselves that way. And no matter how hard they lie to themselves and to everyone else, the both of us know it.

re “diversions”, “de-railing”

This is common amongst alties: turn the discussion away from the central issue and towards the evils of corporations such as pharma, oil or banking in order to show your marks that you’re on the side of the ‘common people’. Usually, they extend their attacks to government, universities, institutions, and media as well who are never trustworthy.. In other words, they say, don’t believe any of them, believe me. All powerful entities and their officers are irredeemably corrupt as they maintain a decadent lifestyle, flying in private jets, island hopping and drinking wines valued at the equivalent of an average person’s net worth, nightly. Even if it were true, it is irrelevant.

Basically, alties rich** or poor, are advocating for products and practises that don’t work or at best, work minimally whilst they simultaneously divert consumers away from SBM that does work and has been shown to work through peer reviewed research. ( And yes, I know that there is questionable research about pharmaceuticals but we know this because it is public and further researchable). On the other hand, alties glorify the effects of herbs, foods, supplements and “energy medicine” relying primarily upon testimonial, practitioner reports and research in shoddy, pay-to-publish, journals.

Because I have surveyed one of these charlatans for over 20 years, I could point you to boatloads of misdirection that steers consumers away from reasonable information about lifestyle and treatment for serious medical conditions. Oz does the same: he just does it in a more sophisticated manner.

** Rich alties don’t hide their wealth but ostentatiously display it. I imagine their marks accept this because it is a reward for all of their “good work” and stands as a testament to their winning the pardigm shift. Lots of images of their estates on the net.

+

Predators gonna predate. Just remember: these people wouldn’t succeed if a great many more people like Kay West and Indie Rebel didn’t deliberately enable them.

It was Ben Franklin who said “It is the first responsibility of every citizen to question authority.” He didn’t say to pick and choose which authorities to hand a free pass.

Double standards—the hallmark of every coward.

“The British Government has learned that Saddam Hussein recently sought significant quantities of uranium from Africa.”—President George W Bush, 16 words

Oh yes, I know, one little experiment negated all the millions of experiences people had with all forms of energy healing.

Well, there’s also the entire body of knowledge of chemistry, physics and physiology negating “millions of experiences”.

But I’m nitpicking, I suppose.

There is nothing in chemistry, physics and physiology that would negate the existence of energies and fields not yet discovered by mainstream materialist science.

Nothing that proves it exists, either. How about proposing an experiment that does just this, since you know so much about the basics of experimental science?
If you were successful, that would shut us up but good.

There is nothing in chemistry, physics and physiology that would negate the existence of energies and fields not yet discovered by mainstream materialist science.

I take it that you missed the collapse of SUSY. All you’ve done here is embarrass yourself.

But I’m nitpicking, I suppose.

Gotta count the “entities.”

This one also reaches for homebrew psychiatry:

Schizophrenics are usually tormented by malicious spirit [sic ] voices. People who hear friendly helpful voices don’t tell anyone.

This is, unexpectedly, a crock of shit. Before Florida, I would routinely hang out with Jerry, among others, in an ersatz, late-morning coffee klatsch in the park. He was quite open about the voices that came with his schizophrenia and reported that they were generally upbeat. His moods were a bit labile, but perhaps not so much as mine in the morning.

It’s as though Indie Rebel has devised a great way to drive people straight around the bend. “Spirit voices,” they’re out there.” G-d only knows what the next weird-ass shit comes after her laying this malicious routine upon anyone she can get her lunchhooks into.

@Narad: I wouldn’t mind so much if Indie Rebel was genuinely nuts; what’s objectionable is that they demand special privilege “just because”, even as we are watching their lamentable thought processes in real time. Nothing they have brought is novel or new: all they do is start from their predetermined conclusion then work backwards to rationalize it, and then get pissy that we are not impressed.

@IR: Look, dummy: we KNOW exactly what it is you are doing and why you are doing it. Because there is not a single one of us here who hasn’t done it ourselves at one time or another. Because that is the human condition.

What differentiates us from you is that we have come to recognize when, how, and why we are doing it; and why doing so is utterly, fundamentally incompatible with forming an honest, reliable understanding of how this universe works. So we make a conscious effort NOT to deceive ourselves, and all you do is roll in here and arrogantly piss on it.

What you’ve got there is religion. Nothing more. So stop insulting our intelligence and our integrity by insisting it is anything else and we are the ones being dishonestly wrong. You aren’t fooling anyone but yourself and you’re really pissing us off with your narcissistic nonsense. Especially nonsense that harms other people.

@Dangerous Bacon: “I have also read articles on SBM for years and never seen anything promoting “materialism” or “atheism”.* I suppose the charge of “naturalism” has some validity if it’s defined as understanding how things work through science, but it’s not the curse word you imagine.”

All SBM authors are atheists, and all who admire and agree with them are atheists. Naturalism is NOT defined as understanding through science. It is defined as the belief that nothing can exist except forces and fields already discovered by science. And it is the belief that all pre-modern belief systems — spirits, afterlife, gods, demons, etc. — are nothing but ignorant superstition.

If you think non-physical entities cannot exist, and if universal consciousness cannot exist, then you logically MUST be an atheist.

I am very familiar with the ideas of Gorski, and of SBM authors and their fans.

All SBM authors are atheists…

Not true.

…and all who admire and agree with them are atheists.

Also most definitely NOT true.

Yes it is true. Anyone who claims to be a materialist/naturalist, yet believes in some kind of “god(s),” either does not understand materialism/naturalism, or does not understand the concept of “god.”

But materialism/naturalism is an irrational philosophy, so its believers are generally irrational.

Anyone who claims to be a materialist/naturalist, yet believes in some kind of “god(s),” either does not understand materialism/naturalism, or does not understand the concept of “god.”

So, is G-d immanent or transcendent?

Why? Is there ONE SBM author who is not an atheist? I doubt it. Maybe ONE “agnostic” who doesn’t care enough to be an atheist? Maybe one SBM reader who is confused enough to think you can be a materialist without being an atheist?

Be more specific. WHO isn’t an atheist here or at SBM? I bet you can’t name one.

Be more specific. WHO isn’t an atheist here or at SBM? I bet you can’t name one.

I’m not. I’m not a theist either, nor an agnostic.

“But materialism/naturalism is an irrational philosophy, so its believers are generally irrational.”

Irrational = not based on logical reasons or clear thinking

Belief in something that cannot be proven to exist by any measurement or observational technique ever invented by humans isn’t exactly rational.

However, if we assume that humans have an innate ability to detect stuff that cannot be measured, then it follows that God could exist, detected by a hitherto unknown ‘mystic field’ organ. Hmmm. However, the logical conclusion of this is that EVERY god exists. All three million odd Hindu deities, the Abrahamic god, Norse pantheon (would the various Germanic differences count as new gods?), Greek/Roman, Chinese, Japanese and so on. On top of that you have every mythical being from the Sidhe to Coyote to Kitsune to the common or garden house ghost.

Homework for you Indie. Do all gods and mythical beings exist? If not, why? Can you logically defend the accuracy of your mystical field organ vs that of the Pope or a wandering Sadhu?

“detect stuff that cannot be measured”

Detection = measurement. We have a phenomenon and an instrument to measure it. There may be the immediate difficulties of repeatability and accuracy, but that does not alter the fundamental fact.

“Detection = measurement. We have a phenomenon and an instrument to measure it.”

Yes. That was a bit sloppy of me.

If you think non-physical entities cannot exist, and if universal consciousness cannot exist, then you logically MUST be an atheist.

Wow, “spirit voices” and a globular blobular cosmic mind. Pretty indiscriminate occultism.

@Narad: “I’m not. I’m not a theist either, nor an agnostic.”

If you are not an atheist, or theist, or agnostic, maybe you believe in simulation theory? That is more or less what I believe in — the idea that the universe is made of information.

But simulation theory means there is likely to be a “spiritual,” non-material, information, basis of reality. And spiritual reality includes — yeah, spirits, gods, what have you.

So voila, you are a theist in spite of yourself, if you are ok with simulation theory.

If you are not an atheist, or theist, or agnostic, maybe you believe in simulation theory?

Wait for it…

So voila, you are a theist in spite of yourself, if you are ok with simulation theory.

I conclude that you leap to conclusions. Clumsily. Simulation “theory” may well be the dumbest fucking thing I’ve heard of in all my natural-born days.

^ Moreover, “information” is not “non-material” — that’s simply misunderstanding Shannon.* This is the sort of thing that tends to plop out when a philosopher of science turns to Robitussin abuse rather than just taking a heady dose of LSD (as unpleasant as the experience might be if he tries to cling to the idea and winds up listening to a busy signal for eight hours).

It also implies the anthropic principle, beloved by people everywhere who refuse to believe that the string theory ship sailed a long time ago.

Sabine Hossenfelder has a fairly gentle take on the matter here: backreaction.blogspot.com/2021/02/the-simulation-hypothesis-is.html

And there’s plenty at Peter Woit’s joint, e.g., math.columbia.edu/~woit/wordpress/?p=583

*And likely the black hole information paradox, but my back hurts and I have a metric shit ton to try to get done. Try here; it doesn’t seem totally slovenly: symmetrymagazine.org/article/has-the-black-hole-information-paradox-evaporated

@Indie Rebel You should check your terms. Theist is one who believes in a personal God

@ Indie Rebel

“Naturalism is NOT defined as understanding through science. It is defined as the belief that nothing can exist except forces and fields already discovered by science.”

Nope. Wrong.

A naturalistic premise is that miracles may exist and be proven to exist if they satisfy David Hume’s criteria for what qualifies as a violation of natural order. Roughly.

This proves that the naturalistic position is open to refutation, criticism, amendments. It is therefore neither a dogma. Nor a “belief”, as you put it.

The twist is that no putative miracle has been able to pass Hume’s criteria.

Which means naturalism stands unchallenged.

Naturalism does not in itself negate, for instance, the legitimacy of the so-called Hard Problem of Consciousness.

Your understanding of naturalism as a dogma that prescribes an answer to the hard problem of consciousness is therefore false.

Legitimate questions that fall outside the perimeter of so-called naturalism do exist. Check out for instance the Chinese Room thought experiment by Searle. Or, if you’re into more medieval stuff, the problem of Porphyry’s five universals and the treatment Albertus Magnus gave to it following insights from Ibn Sina.

These are legitimate non-naturalistic questions that should legitimately be called scientific when recast into a view of science called consilience. Mathematics and Logic also have themselves been argued (somewhat sophistically on multiple counts) to fall outside the perimeter of naturalism and even of science. Denying them the status of science is, well… english bigotry biased towards empiricism. As a “response” to french bigotry based on cartesian rationalism.

Any question pertaining to knowledge falls inside the perimeter of Science. The correct definition of Science is simple: what is not BS. You should dive a bit deeper into negative theology or neti neti, Spiritual Guy… That’s the way you get your definitions straight.

Orac, for some time I have enjoyed your medical insights. In-between reading studies, I have used your website to balance out some of the misinformation. Unfortunately, I have found it a mix of politics and science, so, like a study produced by industry scientists, it has increasingly carried less weight with me. Now Rand Paul is a quack too? Your “insolence” seems to have become less respectful over time, as the quack category of those you disagree with increases. Granted, some are way off, but a few of your quacks are simply individuals or politicians who do not share your medical or political view…so you insult them. My search for medical or political truth will increasingly lead me elsewhere.
Respectfully-

Rand Paul is definitely a quack. He’s antivaccine and has been antivaccine going back many years. (No, don’t argue with me on this one. If you do, I’ll bury you in examples of his antivaccine statements, including his belief that vaccines cause autism.) He’s promoted unproven “miracle treatments” during the pandemic, like hydroxychloroquine and ivermectin. He’s opposed public health interventions like mask mandates. He’s not really a board-certified ophthalmologist; rather, he’s “certified” by a board that almost no hospitals recognize.

I could go on and on and on. Rand Paul is, if anything, worse than Dr. Oz because he is a powerful senator and can thus influence health policy a lot. Now Dr. Oz seeks to join Sen. Paul and develop the same sort of political power. Sorry—not sorry!—if I gored your ox.

@Orac: “Sorry—not sorry!—if I gored your ox.”

Not to worry, it was only a steer.

@NumberWang

“Yet the Emily Rosa experiment is considered definitive proof by the atheist/materialists”

“Actually, it’s main impact is that a pre-teen proved that a bunch of adults were unable to distinguish fact from fiction.

Don’t worry though. That experiment was only one handful of dirt on the coffin of energy healing.”

A pre-teen who did not understand the basics of experimental science. If you want to show an effect does not exist, you have to make an adequate test for that effect. It’s very easy to under-power an experiment — a small N is a favorite trick. Or the wrong kind of subjects.

But the materialist/atheists were so thrilled with her result, they forgot all about the basics of experimental science. The trick works, and it is used often.

If you want to show an effect does not exist, you have to make an adequate test for that effect. It’s very easy to under-power an experiment — a small N is a favorite trick.

Well, where’s your sample-size analysis?

Or the wrong kind of subjects.

It’s always fun when someone demonstrates what “begging the question” actually means.

Nope. Indie, you still don’t understand the point. She hasn’t disproved the existence of a mystery energy field. She’s proved that the test subjects, who said they could detect it, were mistaken.

She proved it very simply. If they can detect a human energy field with their hands then they will always be able to tell if their hands are near a human energy field. They couldn’t. Make all the excuses you want, those people could not detect a human energy field.

I’m sure they all had their excuses. Bad day? Bad vibes? Wrong material in the blinding curtain?

I know it’s hard to believe, but terminal dumbshit Indie Rebel really does think that we are dismissing energy healing based on the result of one small experiment!

No! We dismiss it based on it the totality of evidence acquired over the last 300 years! Ms Rosa’s experiment may not have discovered anything new about the universe, but it told us plenty about the arrogance and stupidity of human nature, further confirming the working hypothesis that these so-called “energy healers” are all self-deceiving boobs.

And here’s the intractabl problem that IR willfully misses: If IR’s magic energy really did exist, there would be a bloody great unexplained hole right in the middle of this. And then every scientist with a grant application to fill would pounce on that mystery, all racing to be the one who solves it first. We’re not kidding: they really would win a Nobel Prize—and then some! ’Cos they’d be the most famous scientist since Newton and Einstein, as discoverer of the fifth fundamental force in the universe.

And yet, after 300 years, science has settled on 4 fundamental forces, and thus far has done a remarkably complete job of explaining how the universe works using just those four without any need for a fifth. IR tells us the reason they don’t recognise a fifth is because only Truly Special People can see its invisible hole and the magical energy that resides within, and everyone else who doesn’t see it is just big meanie poopie brains, and reasons.

We don’t need 300 years of science to tell us that IR is a pathetic auto-fellater who will never amount to anything in life, because IR has already provided the overwhelming evidence in every word they write. And when we try to nudge them in a more productive direction so they’ll stop embarrassing themselves, they double down instead. Deliberately clueless. Utterly irredeemable.

Hey, IR, your train is waiting at Platform 9¾. Run along and catch it now, you ridiculous waste of time and space.

Nope NumberWang, you don’t understand experimental science. When you have a small sample, it might not be representative of the population you are generalizing to., for example. And your test might not be valid.

You are assuming the subjects in that experiment were typical of energy healers, but maybe they were not. And maybe some of the subjects were able to detect the energy, but it might have been canceled out by others who did not.

And you are assuming the test was valid. Maybe the same subjects could have detected energy under different conditions.

And so on.

There are many reasons why we do not accept the null hypothesis based on one small experiment. If statin drugs, for example, were tested in a similar way and declared ineffective, you would never accept that conclusion.

There are many reasons why we do not accept the null hypothesis based on one small experiment.

It’s pretty ironic that you keep saying this while telling other people that they “don’t understand experimental science.”

And maybe some of the subjects were able to detect the energy, but it might have been canceled out by others who did not.

Like how the aroma of mint “antidotes” homeopathic “remedies”?

“When you have a small sample, it might not be representative of the population you are generalizing to”

Finally, you actually say something sensible. You are correct. The TT practitioners may have all been con artists. Or really bad practitioners. They volunteered for The experiment though, so they could just as well have been the cream of the local crop.The experiment showed that they couldn’t detect an energy field though. Don’t spoil it with shite about ‘maybe in another situation’ though. That’s just making excuses. All these people thought that they would be able to ace the test. They didn’t.

Also, given your beliefs in mystic energy and faith healing, you really shouldn’t be spouting experimental theory that you don’t believe in.

We dismiss it based on it the totality of evidence acquired over the last 300 years!

TINW. I dismiss it because it’s rank Bad Fazzm with large dollops of smarm and self-aggrandizement — there’s about as much “indie” and “rebellious” about the trip as a seance.

@Indie Rebel: “A pre-teen who did not understand the basics of experimental science.”

That’s nice. And exactly how long have you had this fixation on 9 year-old girls? Perhaps you’d like to sit over there while you tell us all about it, hmm? †

† Just to demonstrate that Kay West, Indie Rebel, and friends are not the only ones who understand how sleazy manipulative yellow innuendo is done. However, we don’t do it because we are better than you and our arguments are better too. But, please, do keep going with your debased debasing slurs, thus proving our case for us: that you have nothing else to give because you are nothing but abusers yourselves.

So Dr. Oz has two homes and the ‘orac’ crowd is upset

Then Bernie Sanders and AOC must send you people in orbit. Sanders who’s only job was being mayor of a medium sized city, till he got elected to the senate, now he has 4 houses and is worth between 5 and 10 million dollars. Or how about AOC, 2 years ago she was living at home with her mom and bartending to earn a living. She’s now worth over 2 million dollars.

As to the sitting members of the senate, one got her nephew to publicly condemn land (eminent domaine)., then sell the land to her uncle for a nice hefty profit (using government money to finance it). Then turns around and sells the same land to a second senators husband for a hefty profit. Who then in turn sells it to a non-profit company building a high speed railroad (of course at a hefty gain).

Over 70% of all members of congress and the senate own shares of either Pfizer, Moderna or J&J. do you really believe there will be oversight on any of the development or production of those vaccines.

And you complain that a Doctor has two houses

“Meantime, other people still dying.”

Yep more people have died from Covid since Joe Brandon came into office (over 400,000) even with a vaccine, then died when Trump was in office and no vaccine.

And of course all you SBM types still can’t answer the question, Why is the death toll for the US so much higher 600 per million (808,608) with 68% vaccinated than India 6 per million (470,620) with only 38% vaccinated?

“And you complain that a Doctor has two houses”

No, the focus here has been on the useless woo and bad health advice that Dr. Oz has promoted while on the way to amassing his $100 million fortune, including marveling at the wonderful opportunity to send kids to school early in the pandemic, since (according to him) it would have meant a paltry 2-3% increase in mortality.

While his embrace of psychics, faith healing, astrology, iridology, homeopathy and ineffective drugs to treat Covid-19 has deservedly gained him contempt and ridicule, people like you are desperately trying to change the subject and flinging mindless tu quoques right and left.

Why are you so upset that Dr. Oscar Zoroaster Phadrig Isaac Norman Henkle Emmannuel Ambroise Diggs a.k.a. the Wizard of Oz is getting a deserved flaying, now that he’s announced a carpetbagging run for the Pennsylvania Senate from his mansion in New Jersey?

Stop stomping your little Rumplestilskin feet, you’re damaging the carpet.

The worst thing of course is that if elected, Oz will be able to work directly to get bad health policy enacted into law.

Despite the Kays of the world drooling at the prospect, this would not be a good thing.

The question I can’t answer is where you get your numbers. The latest figures from statista.com give a cumulative death rate in the USA of 2371 per million versus a rate of 343 per million. Pretty bad, but nowhere near the 100 to 1 discrepancy you claim.

But wait! There’s more. The Economist estimated the probable number of covid deaths by comparing total deaths to what would be expected, given previous years figures. The USA shows only a small discrepancy. India, on the other hand, had a huge discrepancy. They estimated a total of 2.3 million deaths from covid as of April 30, 2021 versus an official death toll of 200 thousand.. So as of that date, India had a cumulative death rate of about 1600 per million. Of course, it would be much more now.

Let’s look at another country. Canada now has a fully vaccinated rate of 76.5 per cent of eligible population. USA has a rate of 59.7 per cent. Canada has a cumulative death rate of 792 per million. The USA is 2371 per million, almost 3 times greater.

Well, this was a lot of work for a math-challenged person like myself. I hope you appreciate it. I also hope for world peace and a pony.

https://www.economist.com/graphic-detail/coronavirus-excess-deaths-tracker

I’m going to correct my misunderstanding of Kay’s statement of the covid death toll in the USA being 600 times higher than that of India. She appears to be referring to the current death rate rather than the cumulative death rate. Mind you, I could still be wrong. Her writing is extremely confusing.

Anyhoo, let’s look at some other numbers. I feel confident that Kay is a republican, based on her anti-abortion rhetoric and referring to Pres Biden as “Joe Brandon”, for example. She might want to take a look at this report, which shows a strong correlation between covid death rate and vote percentage for Trump in US counties. This is also correlated with false beliefs about vaccine harms, and lower vaccination rates. I find this report compelling because the data is much more accurate than the numbers from India appear to be.

https://www.npr.org/sections/health-shots/2021/12/05/1059828993/data-vaccine-misinformation-trump-counties-covid-death-rate

Incidentally, I found it amusing that Kay, who accused me of being a racist, appears to support Trump, the president who made racism great again.

Her writing is extremely confusing.

What, doesn’t everybody cite statistics in terms of factors of 6?

And of course all you SBM types still can’t answer the question, Why is the death toll for the US so much higher 600 per million (808,608) with 68% vaccinated than India 6 per million (470,620) with only 38% vaccinated?

Rinse out your drool bucket and ask yourself this: Why did India administer 10,000,000 vaccine doses yesterday if everything is so hunky-dory?

@ Kay

As usual you jump at believing anything that suits you. According to several websites “Ocasio-Cortez’s assets total no more than $31,000, according to her latest financial disclosure report. Based on the way personal finances are reported, they might be exceeded by her liabilities, which are reported to be as high as $50,000.” at: https://www.politifact.com/factchecks/2021/mar/10/facebook-posts/aocs-net-worth-over-1-million-s-pants-fire/

And Bernie Sanders monies come from the sale of his books. So, what? at: https://www.townandcountrymag.com/society/politics/a31437248/bernie-sanders-net-worth/

And the several articles I found on Bernie’s wealth make it clear that in the Senate he is on the lower end of wealth.

As for your earlier comment concerning liability for vaccines. One example. Smallpox was both endemic and came in waves that killed a minimum of 25% of a population. However, the smallpox vaccine killed 1 to 2 per million vaccines, so if an entire population was vaccinated, no one died, except 1 to 2 per million. It is impossible to ever be certain that any human endeavor won’t harm some minuscule number of people regardless of how many it benefits. However, given our legal system, a lawsuit from just one of those killed by the smallpox vaccine, especially given how juries sometimes act, could put a company out of business. There is actually a fascinating book by Marcial Angell, former editor of the New England Journal of Medicine, “Medicine on Trial”, that documents how a jury put a company out of business, despite the plaintiff had NO disabilities remotely related to the produce, in this case, silicon breast implants. Juries assume companies have deep pockets and often feel sorry for the plaintiff, ignoring the evidence, just as you ignore lots of science, etc.

As for the mRNA Covid vaccine. I was a volunteer in the Moderna clinical trials. Before volunteering I read up on mRNA, found 20,000 papers on PubMed, National Library of Medicine’s online database, downloaded about 25, read carefully, Then did a search on mRNA vaccines, found around 500, read another 25, including development of mRNA vaccine for SARS. Passed animal trials, phase 1, and phase 2; but then SARS disappeared, so phase 3 cancelled. Then did search and read articles on S-Spike protein. Spent several weeks, then volunteered. Oh, forgot, went to FDA website, downloaded Moderna application and read and FDA website includes ton of papers, etc. on submissions by Moderna and minutes of various meetings that resulted in Emergency Use Approval. And now you can search PubMed and find 610 papers, just type in “Moderna Covid Vaccine”. You can find peer-reviewed, published papers that clearly found no severe outcomes for vaccines, whereas placebo groups ended up in hospital, etc.

VAERS is NOT a valid website for deciding the safety of vaccines. It receives about 1% of minor adverse events and up to 23% of serious adverse events, that is, that people think may be related to a vaccine. However, CDC does thorough investigation of serious adverse events, including obtaining medical records. And also compares with population known adverse events, e.g., on average 2,300 American have a heart attack every single day, so if someone gets a, for instance, flu vaccine, has a heart attack, they look at frequency of heart attacks before flu shot season, and previous years, adjusted for population. By analogy, imagine a crime is committed in a poor minority part of town. Police might bring in 20 suspects for questioning. Using yours and others approach to VAERS, then ALL must be guilty. Well, maybe, one, and, maybe, no one.

The 610 papers on just Moderna mRNA vaccines clearly show how it has saved lives, minimized hospitalizations, etc. And if they now found with a nasal pharyngeal swab that I have Covid-19, I could care less. Our bodies have permanent potentially pathogenic microbe held in check by our immune systems and temporary ones kept at bay and eliminated; but given my age, 75, if I even suffered mild flu-like symptoms, the vaccine was still worth it. I don’t live in world of absolutes. I have read literally hundreds of books and 1,000s of articles on histories of vaccine-preventable diseases, studied immunology, and microbiology, as well as epidemiology and vaccines have a benefits to harm ratio that is exponential.

One last example, oral polio vaccine. It caused up to a dozen cases per year; but prevented 20,000 or more and given that only about 1 in 100 infected with polio virus actually became paralyzed, probably a genetic predisposition, some of those paralyzed by the vaccine would have been paralyzed by the natural virus. Then a new improved version of the killed vaccine was developed and it worked as well and NO ONE paralyzed by it; but the oral was still used in developing nations because too difficult to reach small rural villages for 3 shots, so risk of a few vaccine-caused cases prevented literally 100s of thousands.

Note. I could easily give the URLs to FDA pages for Moderna Covid Vaccine, etc.; but why bother when you will continue in your fantasy unscientific world.

I really don’t want to begin posting comments; but you are such a despicable excuse for a human being that I couldn’t help myself

the oral was still used in developing nations because too difficult to reach small rural villages for 3 shots

And it provides mucosal immunity.

@Kay West: “And of course all you SBM types still can’t answer the question, Why is the death toll for the US so much higher 600 per million (808,608) with 68% vaccinated than India 6 per million (470,620) with only 38% vaccinated?”

Confounders. e.g. Well-ventilated/outdoor/rural lifestyles will slow infection spread. In fact, there’s not a big difference between US and India when you compare officially recorded deaths as a percentage of officially recorded infections. Just 10%, which might be explained by far fewer Indians living to old age (i.e. the population in which the US has seen its highest death rates).
Underreporting. Massive, massive underreporting, by a self-serving bunch of appallingly incompetent corrupt liars—behavior you know all about.

So eff you, Kay West. You really are dirt.

@ Kay West

ABSTRACT: “India lacks an authoritative estimate of the death toll from the COVID-19 pandemic. We report excess mortality estimates from three different data sources from the pandemic’s start through June 2021. First, extrapolation of state-level civil registration from seven states suggests 3.4 million excess deaths. Second, applying international estimates of age-specific infection fatality rates (IFR) to Indian seroprevalence data implies a higher toll of around 4 million. Third, our analysis of the Consumer Pyramid Household Survey, a longitudinal panel of over 800,000 individuals across all states, yields an estimate of 4.9 million excess deaths. Each of these estimates has shortcomings and they also diverge in the pattern of deaths between the two waves of the pandemic. Estimating COVID-deaths with statistical confidence may prove elusive. But all estimates suggest that the death toll from the pandemic is likely to be an order of magnitude greater than the official count of
400,000.”

Abhishek Anand, Justin Sandefur, and Arvind Subramanian (2021 Jul). Three New Estimates of India’s All-Cause Excess Mortality during the COVID-19 Pandemic. Working Paper 589. Center for Global Development. Available at: https://cgdev.org/publication/three-new-estimates-indias-all-cause-excess-mortality-during-covid-19-pandemic

Where did you get your numbers? Did you do a thorough search or just jump at anything that confirms your unscientific, intellectually dishonest world? You do understand that India does NOT have the infrastructure for collecting accurate data that advanced democracies have?

Of course, given you believe social media claims about AOC’s worth, just more proof of your ignorance.

@Kay West You include cases happened before vaccination started (800000 is total number of US deaths) . Vaccination could hardly prevent them.

@TBruce: “It was a simple but effective test of the basis of so-called energy medicine. The “healers” couldn’t detect life energy (or whatever the hell it’s called) hidden from sight any better than chance. That’s the metaphorical equivalent of: “They couldn’t find their asses with both hands, a map and a flashlight.”

How about you propose an experiment that proves that this heretofore undetected “energy” exists?T There’s a Nobel Prize awaiting you if you succeed.”

You obviously have never done experimental research. The non-existence of an effect would never be accepted based on one small experiment.

And the existence of this energy is well known and not questioned in alternative science.

And the existence of this energy is well known and not questioned in alternative science.

Oh, well then.

You’re ridiculous.

And the existence of this energy is well known and not questioned in alternative science.[sic ]

∗SPLORF∗</>

Here I was just thinking I’d ask whether it dissipates as heat (although this might be a perpetual motion machine in a sociological sense), and then this.

Sadly, I’m not calling Poe.

You obviously have never done experimental research.

Explain error propagation to all us (tinu) poor sods.

You actually should prove existence of energy. Only existing energy is useful. You could make your experiment as big as you want,

@Indie Rebel: “And the existence of this energy is well known and not questioned in alternative science.”

LOL, you really are the dumbest stump in all the blasted forest.

Once again, for the terminally hard of learning:

Evidence or GTFO.

…On second thoughts, just GTFO. It is obvious you are incapable of backing up your delusional claims with evidence, while all the evidence you do present is of your own dishonesty, ignorance, and incompetence. So GTFO and go indulge your one-schmuck circle-jerk somewhere else already. Because we do not deserve to be subjected to your endless idiot spoogefest, you intellectual chub.

@Indie Rebel Asking you to prove your claims does not mean that anybody feels threatened. This always happens when someone claims something.

There is no such thing as alternative science. You are essentially saying make believe or what unicorns tell you while you sleep. Especially if you say it is not questioned. Can’t sleep? Put rice in your socks. It’s unquestionably a perfect treatment.

Science as we all know requires proof of existence based on rigorous observation techniques and a well written explanation of what was observed.

Dr. Oz seems to translate what might as well be what unicorns tell him in his sleep with a mixture of standard and delightfully absurd dietary advice. He may know better, but there’s good pay in playing the anti-reason grift. That people notice and comment about how useless his advice is strengthens medicine and health for everyone.

https://newrepublic.com/article/164356/dr-oz-senate-pennsylvania

https://www.bmj.com/content/bmj/349/bmj.g7346.full.pdf

“There is no such thing as alternative science.”

You could try looking up alternative honesty and see if it’s next to that?

Before you continue your dishonesty IR, you do realize that the “healers” (scam artist) who took part in the therapeutic touch experiment said, prior to the experiment, that the setup was to their liking. It was only after they were shown to be charlatans that the complaints started.

Now, I’m sure, you’ll go back to your support for “healing” that does nothing but improve the bank accounts of horrible people who take advantage of the hopes of people who are sick.

You and your ilk have replaced “First, do no harm” with “Do nothing and get paid a lot for it.”

You obviously have never done experimental research. The non-existence of an effect would never be accepted based on one small experiment.

That depends on how big the proposed effect is.

You have obviously never done a power calculation.

You are also unfamiliar with Bayes’ theorem, which also applies here.

I am not familiar with Bayes’ theorem? How would you know what I am familiar with? That’s when you modify the statistics so it’s harder to reach significance for things you don’t want to believe.

Ah yes, more of that alternative science.

For accuracy, you need to start calling it opposite science.

@Indie RebelPeople usually change statistics, or experimental details.to prove their beliefs. Parapsychology is an example.

@ Everyone

After posting my comment above, I thought about it, and, except for the articles on Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, already had everything else I mentioned, so I thought it might be worth the effort to create a reference list. Of course, as with AOC, Kay West will more than likely NOT check anything out or, if she does, will ignore anything that contradicts her world of fantasy. In any case:

References for mRNA vaccine and Vaccine Safety

Moderna Website
A Phase 3, Randomized, Stratified, Observer-Blind, Placebo-Controlled Study to Evaluate the Efficacy, Safety, and Immunogenicity of mRNA-1273 SARS-CoV-2 Vaccine in Adults Aged 18 Years and Older
https://www.modernatx.com/sites/default/files/mRNA-1273-P301-Protocol.pdf

FDA
Moderna COVID-19 Vaccine
https://www.fda.gov/emergency-preparedness-and-response/coronavirus-disease-2019-covid-19/moderna-covid-19-vaccine
[Scroll down page, lots of info]

PubMed
[Note. to avoid the papers resulting from current COVID-19, I limited search to 2018 and back. Also, of course, not all papers are original research, e.g., some meta-analyses, some reviews, some editorials; but the huge number on mRNA going back to 1960s tells us that we know a hell of a lot about mRNA. The mRNA vaccine results include details of several different developed vaccines, including SARS. And the Moderna Covid-19 vaccine search includes a number of studies done around the world, including comparing non-vaccinated with vaccinated.

mRNA 2018 and back
632,111 results

mRNA vaccines 2018 and back
5,133 results

S-Spike Protein 2018 and back
28 results

Moderna Covid-19 vaccine
523 results

One example:
Baden LR et al. (2020 Dec 30). Efficacy and Safety of the mRNA-1273 SARS-CoV-2 Vaccine. New England Journal of Medicine. Available at:
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7787219/

CDC Vaccine Safety website
https://www.cdc.gov/vaccinesafety/index.html

Shimabukuro TT et al. (2015 Aug 26). Safety monitoring in the Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (VAERS). Vaccine; 33(36): 4398-4405.
Available at: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4632204/

Miller ER et al (2020 Nov 3). The reporting sensitivity of the Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (VAERS) for anaphylaxis and for Guillain-Barré syndrome. Vaccine; 38(47): 7458-7463. ABSTRACT Available at: https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/33039207/ [Note. I have the entire paper]

An excellent, actual text only 160 pages, intro to immunology:
Lauren Sompayrac (2019). How the Immune System Works (6th Edition). Wiley-Blackwell. $36.99 at amazon.com

Anyone interested, I can suggest several more books; but they are around 800 pages.

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez Net Worth

“In a post shared more than 14,000 times, a Facebook user claims that Ocasio-Cortez “was broke” when she was first elected to Congress in 2018 but now has a net worth of more than $1 million. . . Financial disclosures that members of Congress are required to file show that it didn’t. Ocasio-Cortez reported assets of between $2,003 and $31,000 in her most recent financial disclosure, filed in September 2020, and student loan debt between $15,000 and $50,000.”

Rick Rouan (2021 Mar 10). Fact check: Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s net worth is not close to $1 million. MSN. Available at: https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/us/fact-check-rep-alexandria-ocasio-cortezs-net-worth-is-not-close-to-dollar1-million/ar-BB1eqoIj

Tom Keltischer (2021 Mar 10). AOC’s net worth over $1 million? That’s Pants on Fire!Politifact. Available at: https://www.politifact.com/factchecks/2021/mar/10/facebook-posts/aocs-net-worth-over-1-million-s-pants-fire/#sources
References to above:
House of Representatives, Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez financial disclosure report, May 15, 2019
House of Representatives, Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez financial disclosure report, Sept. 12, 2020
Center for Responsive Politics, “Poorest new members, 116th Congress,” accessed March 10, 2021

Joel ( what did you get tired of sitting alone in your house with no one to rant against).
Nice links but that was her net worth from only 2020, since that time she has gets a cut of the financially successful documentary “Knocking Down the House” and she is in the process of a book deal as well. And she get 30,000 to 50,000 for speaking fees. not bad money for a bartender.

and please cite those links as you claim you can do it easily, if that were the case why can the FDA only release 500 pages a month?

And Bernie has 3 houses and people complain about Dr Oz’s 2 houses.

India has a population density of 386 people per square mile
United State population density of 83 people per square mile.
6 deaths per million vs 600 deaths per million is a lot of deaths to miscount.

Aarno
Trump on had 1 moths worth of vaccine time and he got blamed for 396,000 deaths in 12 months. Joe Brandon has been in office for 11 months with 13 months of vaccinations behind him and over 410,000 people have died with covid. The death rate has gone up/down and back up since the vaccination process started

has
And so has India has a “massive, massive underreporting by s self-serving bunch of appallingly incompetent corrupt liars”. And you claiming the whole Indian medical society and health ministry is in on the suppression of data? That is a very large conspiracy, if true.

I review your cited research ( on a side note I don’t believe we are to use the BMJ in citation on this site, see Orac post on what happened to the BMF). I did not find India mentioned in your cited work, did you just make up the numbers for India, how did you come up with your posted idea? If you were to look at the over all death rate for India it has fallen to its lowest point in over 70 years, or don’t the people of India know how to count dead bodies.

worldometers.info/coronavirus/worldwide-graphs/

@ Kay

I did post a comment with extensive URLs; but according to Orac if more than 2 URLs comment goes into screening file, so it will eventually be posted. You didn’t give a single URL for your claims about OCV?

You write: “India has a population density of 386 people per square mile
United State population density of 83 people per square mile.
6 deaths per million vs 600 deaths per million is a lot of deaths to miscount.”

Wow. India’s population is 1,399,714,465, Available at: https://www.worldometers.info/world-population/india-population/

The U.S. is 330,000,000. So India has about 4.2 times U.S., population, density not relevant. And for the most part, U.S. cases of COVID have been in denser populated areas. Not honest to include deserts, prairies, etc. So above I gave stats that India has minimum about 4 million deaths, which you ignore, which is, at least, a tad higher than U.S. when adjusted for population.

You write: “I did not find India mentioned in your cited work, did you just make up the numbers for India, how did you come up with your posted idea? ”

I gave with URL in comment/reply to you above. Can’t you read???

As for: “And so has India has a “massive, massive underreporting by s self-serving bunch of appallingly incompetent corrupt liars”. And you claiming the whole Indian medical society and health ministry is in on the suppression of data? That is a very large conspiracy, if true.”

Not necessarily incompetent nor liars, simply inadequate resources as well as lack of public health officers in many of the villages, etc. On the other hand, they may also for political reasons suppressing data. Doesn’t matter the reason, I gave one article above and have several more.

You write: “Aarno
Trump on had 1 moths worth of vaccine time and he got blamed for 396,000 deaths in 12 months. Joe Brandon has been in office for 11 months with 13 months of vaccinations behind him and over 410,000 people have died with covid. The death rate has gone up/down and back up since the vaccination process started”

During the latter part of Trump’s time, lockdowns, masks, social distancing was being used; but people tired of this, together with idiots like you who discount the dangers of COVID, not just deaths; but hospitalizations and long COVID. And stats show that the much higher rates of hospitalizations during Biden’s Presidency are in states with lower vaccination rates and lower adherence to masks, etc. And I won’t bother giving URLs because, just as you ignore my comment including URL about India, you will ignore.

You write: “Joel ( what did you get tired of sitting alone in your house with no one to rant against).”

My comments above were explanations, not rants. However, I asked you awhile back how you have so much time to post comments. No reply. Pot calling the kettle black. Yep, I am alone, walk my dog a mile twice daily, play with frisby with him in backyard, read lots on numerous subjects, currently new text on immunology and Robert Kennedy Jrs book “The Real Anthony Fauci”. Yikes, I could tear apart almost everything he writes, though, as the old say goes “Even a broken clock gets the time right twice daily” so if I decide to write a review of the book, I will give credit for the small number of points he got right. And I donate plasma every four weeks and several times, keep calling, food banks if they need a volunteer. Will probably phone again soon. Yep, never smoked, barely tried alcohol, never, not even once, used any other recreational drug but caffeine. Became vegetarian in my 20s, then vegan; but take necessary vitamin supplements, not megadoses, e.g. B12 because can’t get from vegan diet, vitamin D3, and iron because blood donor. Have jogged, bicycled, swam, try to always use stairs, long walks, trained AIKIDO (poor reflexes and hand eye coordination; but was fun) and off and on moderate weight lifting. Literally I’ve outlived ALL my childhood friends and many from latter years. Before lockdown went to local YMCA almost every day, often drank coffee afterwards and went to lunch with various people Love it because they came from all over the globe. Since I traveled extensively and lived in five different nations, never married; but still in touch with several women I dated. You make it sound like living alone somehow affects ones cognitive skills. Absurd; but typical of you. However, once more: How do you find so much time to write comments?

@Joel: “Yikes, I could tear apart almost everything [JFK Jr] writes, though, as the old say goes “Even a broken clock gets the time right twice daily” so if I decide to write a review of the book, I will give credit for the small number of points he got right.”

Please do! I’m sure Orac’s other secret blog would be delighted to host a guest post!

Many hands make light work. Of liars and frauds.

@ Kay

Once one gets in public limelight, income usually does improve, AOC, according to reports, saves half her income as member of Congress her income is $174,000 plus housing allowance. If she now gets paid to give talks and for being in a film, so what? Nothing corrupt or dishonest; but please give URLs.

As for Bernie, three houses, so what? I have had friends who owned one house in city they lived in, a small cottage in country, for weekend getaways, and a condo in Washington, DC because often there. And given his age, income as Senator, etc. affording three houses within his income, no corruption involved.

I really don’t care about how many homes Dr. Oz owns; but about the unscientific claims he makes.

When young I voted for Robert Kennedy in primaries. There are wealthy people who are honest and compassionate and there are those who aren’t. And there are moderate income people also many honest and compassionate and some who aren’t. I don’t judge people by their wealth alone; but by their history, their actions, etc.

Wiping shit on other people is what Kay does to distract us from the fact she has nothing else. Tiresome but unsurprising. Movement antivaxxers are the poison that rots their own souls. Just to feel powerful. What a way to live.

@Joel: “As for Bernie, three houses, so what?”

Indeed. I assume one of those is his permanent home while a second is his Washington residence (i.e. required by the job). Maybe the third’s a nice holiday cottage out in the country somewhere. As long as he earned it all legitimately, who cares?

Incidentally, at one time my parents owned four properties (1 family home, 3 apartments), so one better than the Bern. Because they worked their asses off and invested every spare penny they had into property: buying cheap, doing up, renting out, and reinvesting. As kids we holidayed in a creaky old caravan, rarely ate out, watched a second-hand TV, didn’t wear flash clothes; as adults, our parents ensured that each of their kids owned their own apartment as a headstart in life. Because our parents were decent honest middle-class folks with an amazing work ethic who dedicated their lives to helping out others as well as their own. (They also did lots of fostering and charity work on top of full-time jobs.) Again, just amazing energy and dedication; certainly put me to shame. But who knows, maybe Kay would like to shit on them too?

Meantime Kay West’s slimy innuendo here only succeeds in proving Kay West to be an even more dishonest disgusting useless human than we already took her for. And, believe me, we already took her for Satan’s left rectal wart, so at this point we’re just morbidly curious to see how much lower Ms Backhoe can possibly go.

Kay West: “And so has India has a “massive, massive underreporting by s self-serving bunch of appallingly incompetent corrupt liars”. And you claiming the whole Indian medical society and health ministry is in on the suppression of data? That is a very large conspiracy, if true.”

Moron. It doesn’t need a “very large conspiracy”, just poor number gathering at local level and some crooked epidemiology at national government level to tie that crap data in a self-serving report. People aren’t officially dead if officials simply don’t bother to count the deaths. And India has more than enough corruption, ineptitude, and inadequate resources to go all around. In a vast nation of a billion people and enormous social disparity, lots of poor dead pople could easily go unnoticed even in a normal year. And these last couple years have been anything but.

The Modi government could easily give the Bush 43 regime a run for their money in terms of endemic corruption; and the Bush lot intentionally launched an illegal war that killed a good half million just because they wanted to. And all they did was rig a few well-placed reports too. Lying to get you want is not hard in itself, as you well know. The only challenge is getting away with it, and all that needs is for most people not to know, or not to care, or to be too preoccupied with all their own problems. No grand conspiracies; just lots of little people looking out for nobody but themselves.

Piece of piss, really. Just like you.

@Kay West: I chose the BMJ analysis because it discusses the enormous differences in accuracy of reporting in different parts of the world:

Modelling of excess mortality trends suggests that at least half of covid-19 deaths have been missed globally and, at worst, 75%. This global estimate, however, masks wide variation between countries. Results from multiple European countries suggest at least 75% of covid-19 deaths feature in official reports, but in other settings this proportion is far lower. In Peru, reanalysis of death certificates and covid-19 case definitions resulted in a tripling of official covid-19 death rates and closer alignment with excess mortality. Across South Africa, estimates of the number of excess deaths have also reached more than three times the number of officially confirmed covid-19 deaths, and estimation from multiple sources in India suggests that only 10% of covid-19 deaths have been officially reported. In Brazil, by contrast, surveillance of severe acute respiratory infections suggests roughly 80% of covid-19 deaths have been recorded.

I have bolded a mention of India in particular, just for you.

At best, the official stats will tell us if COVID is trending worse or better within India from month to month (assuming the Modi government is rigging numbers differently from month to month). But you cannot directly compare the official stats for India to the US, because the accuracy of those numbers is completely different.

(And this is not even considering the huge environmental and lifestyle differences between the two nations, which will also likely generate very different case and death numbers.)

So if you wish to attempt a direct comparison of India vs US COVID deaths, you must first develop a decent estimate of underreporting in each country and multiply the official counts by that, and then compare the results (with suitably large error bars). To do anything else is useless at best; deliberately deceptive at worst. And since we already know you’re an absolute lying cnut, it’s safe to say here you’re doing the latter. Surprise! Didn’t work! Again. Give up, loser. It’s embarrassing for us, having to hand you your ass. And the incontinence…euwww.

@ Kay

Look at one comment just above. My list with URLs finally posted. And below two posts by Has, second includes quote from BMJ that reported Indian deaths probably only 10%.

Time to go into backyard to play with Frisbee and my dog.

But, I’ll ask once again, how do you find so much time to post comments?

And have you ever attempted to learn the basics of immunology, microbiology, history and current status of vaccine-preventable diseases, epidemiology, etc?

I realize, like Trump, you don’t need any of the above, just consider yourself “an intuitive genius” but that is a simple excuse for being too lazy to actually devote time and energy into learning the basics of the sciences related to vaccines, etc. And like Trump, a malignant narcissist, caring not a bit about the actual people being harmed, as long as it isn’t you, or, perhaps, a very few others that you care about.

I should have said this a few days ago but….
welcome Monsieur F!
And today, welcome Dr Joel!

I also find it distasteful to interact with many of Orac’s harshest critics/ reality denialists, so I try to write around them, addressing all readers, more reasonable people or regulars, in other words, forsaking lost causes for more achievable ends. Plus, it gives other SB commenters a chance to debunk nonsense.

I realize it is not easy to understand experimental science if you have not done it yourself. Fortunately, I had 4 years of experience while getting a PhD.

There are various reason why your experiment might be under-powered (not capable of detecting an effect if there is one) or not valid. You might have a small number of subjects, and/or they might not be representative of the population you are trying to generalize about.

The Emily Rosa energy healing experiment was very probably under-powered and non-valid. Suppose, for example, that a third of the subjects were able to detect the energy, and two thirds were not. Or suppose the test was unnatural and not conducive to detecting the energy. OR WHATEVER. In experimental psychology or medical research, the null hypothesis would NEVER have been accepted based on just one study like this.

NEVER.

For example, supposed you were testing the ability of statin drugs to prevent heart attacks. You have 20 subjects in each group, statin drug vs placebo. You give them the drugs for 3 weeks. You find no statistically significant different between the mean scores of the two groups.

If someone dared to publish that study you would be yelling “No fair to statins, we know they work.” (Even though they don’t actually do what they are advertised for, but that’s another problem.)

Maybe some of you can understand the folly of accepting null based on the Emily Rosa experiment. The only reason you like it is because it supposedly put energy healing to rest. No it did not.

And if the subjects really were scam artists, they never would have agreed to participate.

No one funds energy healing research that aims to be published in mainstream journals. Plenty has been published in alternative medicine journals. An plenty has been published in China, for example, where they believe in chi.

@Indie Rebel: “I had 4 years of experience while getting a PhD.”

You should have spent 4 years on the beach getting stoned. You would have saved your money and been a lot more personable. Probably mounted better arguments too. What a waste of a university place.

In experimental psychology or medical research, the null hypothesis would NEVER have been accepted based on just one study like this.

What was your Ph.D. in, again?

Oh blah blah blah.

Come on, Dr Experimental Science Guru. You claim to know OH SO MUCH about experimental design, then show us how it’s done, Give us benighted fools an experiment design that would provide some evidence that this “energy” of which you speak actually exists. You can do it. After all, YOU’RE the expert.

I already said, many times, that one experiment is not enough to settle a question, in psychology, medicine, etc.

It usually requires some trial and error to get an adequate power and validity. As I said before, under-powered experiments are a favorite trick of the drug industry, and of parapsychology “debunkers.”

I didn’t ask for the One True Experiment that would prove to upset Reality (although that would be kinda cool). I asked for an experiment that would provide some (any?) evidence to support your claims. Your answer is mere obfuscation and distraction.

In other words: You’ve got nothing.

So you are against statins, but for reiki, I wonder is your PhD anyway related.
For statins there are clinical trials. For reiki much less so:
https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/18410352/
If reiki masters could not detect qi in every occasion, how reiki is supposed to work ? One expreriment is enough to show that apple falls, because it falls every time,
What kind a skill you can learn during a weekend ? It cannot be very complex

I have a PhD in addition to my MD and have been funded by the NIH, ASCO, the DoD, and private foundations to do experimental science. I got my PhD in the 1990s. So let’s just say that I have a lot more experience than you at “experimental science.”🙄

The Emily Rosa energy healing experiment was very probably under-powered and non-valid. Suppose, for example, that a third of the subjects were able to detect the energy, and two thirds were not.

But all 21 practitioners in the study claimed they could detect HEF. So you now want to posit that two thirds of them were lying?

Why not then just conclude that all of the participants were lying about their ability to detect HEF? Why stop at two thirds?

Generally, alties/ woo-meisters/ anti-vaxxers tell their audiences what they want to hear: easy answers for difficult questions, simple treatments for complex or deadly illnesses, guarantees rather than uncertainty and a just world that rewards the good and punishes the wicked without error.

Most of the people I survey include a spiritual or religious dimension to their models of health, hinting that following their advice is somehow sanctioned by higher authority as well as being called “scientific” ( only by them). They can’t explain how homeopathy or energy medicine works using everyday physics-chemistry-biology-physiology-psychology so they add esoteric imaginings to the mix. If the diet-exercise-supplement programme doesn’t cure their symptoms, it could be that patients weren’t spiritual enough or they had too many negative thoughts.
“You have to be happy to be healthy”, claims one of them. When followers foolishly fear vaccines, they are re-assured that their bad choice is indeed correct because vaccines don’t work or actually kill ( or aren’t even really vaccines). Difficult, painful or uncertain treatments for serious conditions are deemed useless or more dangerous than the condition itself and replaced by simple dietary advice or unobtrusive remedies like meditation or yoga that correct the underlying problem that led to illness usually labled as stress, lack of faith or modern living. Magic isn’t only in fantasy novels.

One of the alties I survey has claimed a cure for hiv/ aids: it’s not caused by a virus, it’s caused by not living right . Another tells his audience how to survive the oncoming apocalypse with packaged organic rations and sufficient ammunition stockpiles.
Other anti-vax proselytisers too numerous to mention attribute their children’s autism to post-natal interventions like vaccines rather than accept what SBM teaches about its origins probably to attempt to avoid the “stigma” of imperfection.

@NumberWang: “Also, given your beliefs in mystic energy and faith healing, you really shouldn’t be spouting experimental theory that you don’t believe in.”

Haha, now you have revealed your profound level of ignorance. You think “paranormal” beliefs contradict experimental science? One of the early experimental sciences was parapsychology. And parapsychology still is an experimental science.

You are just a fanatical atheist ideologue. No wonder you hang out here.

You got a couple punches to the face and I love it. Not nearly enough for your lying and promoted killing — child Killer Kay.

IMHO — Either you are insane or an anti-reason jobber. We know it here. We may need to spread the word because you want people to die but that isn’t normal. You love that people die. Everyone here will know you support Americans dying. Your posts are clear.

You are clearly insane and anti-American.

@Indie Rebel: “You think “paranormal” beliefs contradict experimental science?”

LOL, nope. Non-sequitur.

Whereas if experimental science contradicts paranormal beliefs, you have only two choices: toss the beliefs or toss the science. Which of those options you choose says everything about the sort of person you are, and whether or not you are capable of being honest with yourself (never mind with anyone else).

Consequently, we know which sort of person you are, because you provided us all the evidence yourself. What amuses us is that, for someone who claims to own a PhD, you do not seem to possess the brains to recognize that you have already blown your case, and that doubling-down will not salvage it. So all you are doing now is making an even greater fool of yourself, in front of an audience that is happy to encourage you to discredit yourself and wreck your cause for as long and as hard as you want. Saves us the work and might be sporadically entertaining, if nothing else.

You are just a fanatical atheist ideologue. No wonder you hang out here.

Speaking of which, why are you and your inapropos keyboard shrieking here? Was Pharyngula closed for remodeling or something?

One of the early experimental sciences was parapsychology.

Modulo a few thousand years, of course.

Parapsychology has zero experimental results, they always disappear when controös are tightened enough,

“No one funds energy healing research that aims to be published in mainstream journals. Plenty has been published in alternative medicine journals.”

No one is stopping energy medicine “researchers” from submitting their funded studies to mainstream journals. The papers wind up in alt med journals because they’re willing to accept crap (for a sizable fee, one assumes).

I for one can’t understand why parapsychologist Dean Radin*’s groundbreaking research on “healing intention” didn’t make it into the New England Journal of Medicine. Radin et al studied astrocyte cell growth in culture exposed to practitioners of a Japanese healing intention modality.** There were no reported effects on overall cell growth compared to cells bereft of healing intention, but the study was described as showing a positive growth effect anyway***, by means I do not fully understand because reading the paper made my brain hurt.

https://www.liebertpub.com/doi/pdf/10.1089/107555304322849020

*Dean is, of course, into quantum mechanics to explain his beliefs. If you don’t comprehend what the hell he’s talking about, it’s because you are unqualified to judge his work.
**in addition to sending waves of healing intention to the cell flasks, the practitioners sang and chanted, though it is unclear whether the cells “heard” them.
***facilitating astrocyte growth may not be such a good thing, as it is seen in glial scar formation and could be lead to an increased risk of primary or metastatic tumors. This doesn’t seem to have occurred to Radin.

Dean is, of course, into quantum mechanics to explain his beliefs. If you don’t comprehend what the hell he’s talking about, it’s because you are unqualified to judge his work.

And here was me thinking it was because Dean doesn’t understand the first thing about quantum physics.

Oh, girls, girls, you’re both pretty!

Yes. Yes, it is entirely possible that Dean is spouting quantum flapdoodle because he genuinely believes he knows what he’s talking about. And yes, it is also entirely possible that Dean is spouting quantum flapdoodle because he knows that his audience does not, and thus is simply playing a Galileo Gambit updated to Bohr.

However, you have both completely missed a third possibility!—that Dean’s true position is in fact a quantum superposition of the other two, where both are simultaneously right and simultaneously wrong, and will remain this way until such time as you wedge that fcuker’s balls in a vise and tighten it until all four finally collapse with a “pop!”

And, to be perfectly honest, I’m really starting to think that this is the only experimental science which should count, so the sooner we get our funding application submitted the better. For while it may or may not answer the great remaining mysteries of the universe, it will at least ensure that all these looneys and fraudsters can’t breed any more. #MarchingMorons

The anger expressed here by the atheists is understandable. When you have a strong belief in something you hate to see it threatened, so you fight back hard at anyone who questions your belief system.

Most of Gorski’s readers are devote atheists, as he is, and atheism makes you feel superior. Anyone with any religious or spiritual beliefs is ignorant trash needing to be stamped out. It is impossible to reason with a seething mob, because anger and reason are not compatible.

So I am honored to have my ideas perceived as such a dangerous threat to anti-spiritualism and atheism.

Most of Gorski’s readers are devote atheists, as he is, and atheism makes you feel superior.

You, the other day: “All SBM authors are atheists, and all who admire and agree with them are atheists.”

I guess it’s progress for you now to be saying that only “most” of my readers are “devote atheists.” [sic]

So I am honored to have my ideas perceived as such a dangerous threat to anti-spiritualism and atheism.

Your ideas? That’s rich. This crap makes the rounds here every few years.

By the way, is the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops “anti-spiritualistic” and “atheist” (PDF)?

I’m guessing the writings of Thomas Merton are something else that you are unfamiliar with.

I love Christ and his teachings. Do you? You insult decent Christians and other devout loving human beings. We know you are a bad pugilist, propagandist, and human.

Because you show bigotry against people and also don’t know what the F you are talking about, it is clear you are dead bot. You know nothing but hate. Very clear. Your arguments clearly suck and promote hate. Loving people notice this and reject it. Why you don’t — hard to say. You hate people.

“estimation from multiple sources in India suggests that only 10% of covid-19 deaths have been officially reported.”
so India reports about 6 deaths a day and only reports 10% that rate, if true, is still lower then the 600 per day in the US.

You are accusing fraud, by claiming just a few people in both the local level and the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare and have that kind of control of the official numbers.

If you were to do a comparison of just deaths ignoring the listing of cause of death (covid). If India were to have the same/equal numbers of over all deaths in comparison to the US overall deaths, India’s death rate would need to be 15-20% higher then are reported, you really believe that over 2,500 extra people dying every day in India would not go noticed? That is a pretty large number of excess deaths to hide.

For you to make such a claim you would need more then just a thin sourced news article from 2 years ago. The article has nothing to do with covid, but bribes. Just a question who is paying a bribe to hide the covid data and to what end. More covid deaths would equate to more international aid.

For you to make this statement you have just described is what is actually going on in the global warming/climate change and is actually confirmed by their own emails and how they used their positions to get those who oppose them to be censored and de funded.

“Moron. It doesn’t need a “very large conspiracy”, just poor number gathering at local level and some crooked epidemiology at national government level to tie that crap data in a self-serving report.”
You have a small number of people who have instituted a “infill” (read make up) 50% of missing data from temperature records. These same people claim that the US weather service personnel couldn’t read thermometer and have adjusted the data over 1.2 degrees and are still adjusting data to this date. My father was a meteorologist for the US Weather Bureau for over 40 years, he would be appalled at how NOAA is now claiming he didn’t know how to read a mercury thermometer and how much they are adjusting his and his co-workers readings

Here is just a sample of how a small number of people (crooked as you described them) influenced the global warming climate change.

theguardian.com/environment/2010/jul/07/hacked-climate-emails-analysis

“Recently rejected two papers (one for JGR and for GRL) from people saying CRU has it wrong over Siberia. Went to town in both reviews, hopefully successfully. If either appears I will be very surprised, but you never know with GRL.
Cheers
Phil”

Mike,
… I can’t see either of these papers being in the next IPCC report. Kevin and I will keep them out somehow – even if we have to redefine what the peer-review literature is !
Cheers
Phil

Mike,
Can you delete any emails you may have had with Keith re AR4? Keith will do likewise… Can you also email Gene and get him to do the same? I don’t have his new email address. We will be getting Caspar to do likewise…
Cheers
Phil “

So I might have to agree with you that poor number gathering and some crooked people at the national government make self serving reports.
“Data is easily manipulated, and massaged statistics have been used to prove points and enact policy for centuries. And today, it appears government agencies”

Oh look, Kay West has got herself a little pet! Hump that leg, baby!

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-asia-india-57888460

https://www.cgdev.org/publication/three-new-estimates-indias-all-cause-excess-mortality-during-covid-19-pandemic

Seriously, can do this all day:

google.com/search?q=india+excess+deaths

The fact that India doesn’t count its own excess deaths—regardless of whether that lack of due dilligence is due to corruption, lack of resources, or plain not giving a crap†—means that it is impossible to take India’s official COVID death numbers at face value: there’s no easy way to cross-check if those numbers are ballpark correct or wildly suspect.

But okay, whatever boo, you keep playing your stupid distraction/deflection/derail games, folk are gonna conclude that the Indian govt aren’t the only scumballs with something to hide.

Oh, wait, no… Already concluded. Too late, asshole. Years too late.

† It simply doesn’t matter which of these factors is at work. It was West who brought up “vast conspiracy” as an Argument from Incredulity fallacy. All I did was respond to that by showing plain old everyday corruption—for which India is long [in]famous—would be an entirely credible explanation should a massive undercount be the product of malice.

However, my claim was simply that comparing official US COVID deaths to official India COVID deaths is a worthless exercise—incompetent bullshit at best, deliberately dishonest at worst—since that assumes both sets of figures are accurate (and implies both populations are comparable). I showed that there are good reasons not to take India’s numbers at face value (and that they are not alone in having poor-quality/suspect stats). And rather than saying “that’s a fair point; perhaps our comparison was a poor one and we should reconsider it” you doubled-down on your original comparison instead. Thereby proving to us you’re lying, you damn well know you’re lying, and you don’t give a flying crap that we both know you’re lying, because all you incontinent cockwombles care about is Lying For The Cause: virtue-signalling to the rest of your vomitous murder-death cult how fecking dedicated and Speciaaaaaal you are. Like fcuking dogs pissing on the lamppost, each determined to show that he’s the Top Dog now.

So fcuk you and your wall of noise about IPCC and houses and every other bullshit distraction you puke out, because all you loathesome twunts will be the death of humanity. and at this point I’m pretty much okay about that. So who knows; perhaps in another hundred million years evolved cockroaches will do a much better job of intelligent life than H. sapiens ever did. They certainly have an excellent head-start on you.

@Sophie Amsden

You forgot to include the Illuminati as part of the climate change vast conspiracy. They will not be happy. I tend to discount the involvement of the Masons.

BTW, lovely weather in British Columbia these last few weeks.e

I don’t intend to stick around on this thread, but props to Sophie for this hard-hitting rebuttal.

What paper they were speaking about ? Perhaps some of yourf riends can dig it out ? I mean, it could be a bad paper.

@Orac: “I started encountering so many doctors who denied evolution or were antivaccine.”

I doubt that. You probably encountered doctors who had the good sense to realize the evolution-by-blind-chance-and-selection theory is wrong. And who don’t absolutely love all vaccines and think the more vaccines you get the better.

Oh look, Indie fucknut is burbling again. Like a blocked reeking drain.

Listen, simpleton. We get it. Your Beliefs come First, and everything else is subservient to that. You’ve convinced us that you simply do not value honesty or integrity, or contemplating even the possibility that you could ever be wrong.

So kindly fcuk off and go conduct your holy-rolling auto-fellatio somewhere in private so we don’t have to watch your disgusting spooge show any more.

You revolt us with your incapacity to entertain any viewpoint except your own, and all you do is abuse us by trying to force it down our throats. We have now repeatedly made it clear to you that we will not swallow; so what you going to do—abuse us some more? That only speaks the truth about you all the louder. If you can’t do honesty then at least do smart, and realize you only damn yourself and your kind even further.

“I doubt that. You probably encountered doctors who had the good sense to realize the evolution-by-blind-chance-and-selection theory is wrong. And who don’t absolutely love all vaccines and think the more vaccines you get the better.”

So basically, you don’t like the fact that science shows everything you think is wrong, so you’ve chosen to ignore science.

it is never clear how someone like you so completely fails both education and honesty.

It figures. Natural selection is not blind chance. It is exactly opposite, it is selection. Try to understand this,

Those of you feeling betrayed because info on Dr. Oz’s Homeopathy Starter Kit no longer appears on the Ozian website (scrubbed for his Senate run?) will be delighted to find key excerpts on the website of Quebec naturopath Lisa Samet, who appeared on the Oz show to boost this fine addition to the quack armamentarium.

https://www.lisasamet.com/lisa-samet-on-the-dr-oz-show/

I would have watched the videos myself, but ran out of 200C Nux Vomica for prophylaxis purposes.

@ Sophie Amsden

I guess you missed my earlier post:

ABSTRACT: “India lacks an authoritative estimate of the death toll from the COVID-19 pandemic. We report excess mortality estimates from three different data sources from the pandemic’s start through June 2021. First, extrapolation of state-level civil registration from seven states suggests 3.4 million excess deaths. Second, applying international estimates of age-specific infection fatality rates (IFR) to Indian seroprevalence data implies a higher toll of around 4 million. Third, our analysis of the Consumer Pyramid Household Survey, a longitudinal panel of over 800,000 individuals across all states, yields an estimate of 4.9 million excess deaths. Each of these estimates has shortcomings and they also diverge in the pattern of deaths between the two waves of the pandemic. Estimating COVID-deaths with statistical confidence may prove elusive. But all estimates suggest that the death toll from the pandemic is likely to be an order of magnitude greater than the official count of
400,000.”

Abhishek Anand, Justin Sandefur, and Arvind Subramanian (2021 Jul). Three New Estimates of India’s All-Cause Excess Mortality during the COVID-19 Pandemic. Working Paper 589. Center for Global Development. Available at: https://cgdev.org/publication/three-new-estimates-indias-all-cause-excess-mortality-during-covid-19-pandemic

And undercounting the deaths of a couple thousand people a day in an extremely poor nation with a population of 1.3 billion people, especially by what has become a right-wing authoritarian government is credible. And I have several more articles, including the one Has mentioned in the BMJ. Do you actually know anything about India, e.g., how difficult it is to even get health care to large areas of the nation, millions of tiny villages, etc.?

Of course, given you don’t believe COVID-19 is all that dangerous, of course, you will reject anything, regardless of how well-done, that conflicts with your beliefs. You do notice that the ABSTRACT above is based on surveys conducted in India? So, how come the actual surveys give a much higher number of deaths than the official government? Explain that if you can???

And undercounting the deaths of a couple thousand people a day in an extremely poor nation with a population of 1.3 billion people, especially by what has become a right-wing authoritarian government is credible.

A bigger issue India had during the delta wave was undercounting COVID-19 infections. Large numbers of people died in rural India without ever being tested for COVID-19. Therefore, they did not become COVID-19 deaths, even though they probably died of the disease. The same is also true of the urban poor. At the height of the delta wave 25% of COVID-19 tests in India were positive.

I have to turn in very soon, but it seems that something much like the locus classicus for this rams’ ball haggis is one Martha E. Rogers, “Nursing Science and the Space Age” (1994).

OMFG, Joel is back! I am actually excited. No offense to Aarno, but this is a moment when I could actually benefit from one of Joel’s 5000 words dissertation. Joel, I don’t intend to stick around on this thread; please join me on the ‘cancer-spike’ thread and help me understand what Vanden Bossche is referring to with his ‘innate antibodies’.

Another “look at me! Pay attention to me! I’m lonely” post from our resident troll.

C’mon guys, you are rubbing me the wrong way. If I were lonely, I would jump right into this simmering discussion, and even if Sophie doesn’t seem to need much help handing you your asses on a platter.

Guys, Joel and I go way back. Before Aarno, he was my go-to guy on the science. Come to think of it, for a science blog, how come you guys are always so hesitant to talk science?!

Joel, I really would like to see you put all those initials behind your name that you are so obsessed with including on every one of your posts to the test. I really would like you to clarify some of Bossche’s ideas. Join me on the ‘spike -antibodies’ thread. Ignore all my haters; they don’t understand how tight you and I are.

Fack off, Gerg the Perv. You aren’t funny and you definitely aren’t clever, so that really narrows it right down. You need help, not attention. Ideally from the business end of a shotgun.

Fack off, Gerg the Perv. You aren’t funny and you definitely aren’t clever, so that really narrows it right down. You need help, not attention. Ideally from the business end of a shotgun.

Cute rap, Has, but I think you’re misreading the situation. Has, see all those initials behind Joel’s name? Do you think he takes them lightly? No! Those are gunslinger creds to be defended at all costs.

Has, what do you think will happen when a ‘punk’ like me barge into the saloon and call Joel out? Do you think Joel will just tip his hat and continue to sip at his whiskey. No, Has, Joel has dropped his drink. In fact, all the patrons have also dropped theirs, and it’s
now stunned silence as they wait for Joel to kick through those saloon doors and head out to the square to settle things.

That’s the life of a science gunslinger, Has. Never backing down!

Unfortunately, I have insight into the origins of Therapeutic Touch, a form of energy medicine:
Dolores Krieger, who taught at NYU School of Nursing and Dora Kunz, a promoter/ past official of Theosophy, created a “therapy” based upon ancient techniques like the “laying on of hands” that, according to Krieger wasn’t religious. ( see article on TT, Wikipedia)
In the 1970s, alt med guru, Gary Null, then merely a ‘junior scientist’, before he became a “senior research fellow”, did research on anti-aging medicine and psi projects, at the Institute of Applied Biology/ Trafalgar** Hospital, homes of Emanuel Revici: he formally tested the arcane powers of Krieger and dozens of other healers ( a rabbi, a priest, a chiropractor etc) who “healed” rats with “ascites” and achieved spectacular results with 6 of the healers succeeding 6 out of 6 times. Krieger was one of the select few.
Armed with this and other ‘data’, she continued her mission teaching nurses how-to heal patients in this manner. Eventually, her method was taught in schools of nursing in the US and abroad.
Healers like the aforementioned Null, attribute their own powers to innate spirituality inherited from his mother who advised/ diagnosed a la Edgar Cayce and prayed for the sick. When confronted with an ill person, he manifests an ‘energy exchange’ in which he balances their energy with his superior vibes because diet, supplements, exercise and good thoughts can only go so far, just half of the way to a cure ( these variables’ relative contributions were ascertained through his calculations). Subjects at his retreats provide testimony of healing when he intervened.

** not that Trafalgar!

And this is a big problem why? Ancient techniques can’t possibly work? Nothing can possibly work unless you consider it “modern medicine?” Ancient people were all delusional idiots? Similar techniques were used in most ancient societies, just by chance, for no good reason.

Any modern health practitioner who uses anything resembling an ancient healing technique has to be a quack? Should be banned from practicing? Why? Because you don’t happen to think it works? Everyone who thinks it works must be delusional?

Typical athiest/materialist close-minded non-thinking.

And this is a big problem why? Ancient techniques can’t possibly work?

What part of the foregoing was “ancient”?

@Indie Rebel: “straw straw straw straw… [gods you’re such a fecking bore…] straw straw straw straw…”

If it works, prove it. If it doesn’t, discard it.

This is not a hard concept. It is also what real medicine has been doing now for the last 150 years; which is one of the reasons those of us in wealthier nations now live far longer and healthier lives than the died in childbirth that our own ancestors took as granted. No, it doesn’t do a perfect job of this, but it still does an infinitely better job than homeochiroreiki quacktitioners has. Because it is willing to admit (however begrudgingly) when it is wrong and thus (slowly) change itself for the better.

By the way, all that homeochiroreiki wankfodder being flogged by Oz & co. for a whole lot of decidedly modern money proves to be less than 200 years old as well. So you can cram your “ancient peoples” drivel where the sun don’t shine, because for over 2000 years up until just recently it was Galenic medicine which ruled supreme over much of the world†, wherein every patient’s diseases were expertly diagnosed by your ancient experts as a dangerous imbalance in their four humors, and for which the ancient treatment was to bleed those poor bastards like a stuck pig until either they died or nature—despite these so-called “healers’” best efforts—nevertheless managed to heal them… or at least until their next disease came along.

So tell us truthfully, Insufferable Rube: are in fact advocating for a return to Galenic medicine? Because if it is indeed this Ancient And Wise Medicine which you are prescribing, then please, please, PLEASE: go slit your wrists now‡, and save us all from the cruel frustration and terminal brain rot that is listening to your neverending monomanic balls.

† Far-eastern medicine was just the west and middle-east’s Galenic medicine only with five humors instead of four. Bloody splitters.

‡ Lengthways, not crossways, obvs. Gotta get all them bad humors out!!!!1!1!!

Indie,
Based on just a general understanding of the whole of human history, consider this.
If it were possible for a human to affect the body of another human without having to be in touching distance, wouldn’t that ability have been used as a weapon several millennia ago?

And yet, humans are still stuck with all the other methods we’ve invented (as a species) for hurting each other.

Therefore, the manipulation of energy fields with just the mind to affect the body of another person at a distance, is not possible.

@has: ” those of us in wealthier nations now live far longer and healthier lives than the died in childbirth that our own ancestors took as granted.”

You are ignorant of how lifespan and health have varied in different times and places. In early industrial societies, many were poor and starving, which decreased average lifespan.

In traditional agrarian or hunting/gathering societies, people tended to be healthy, but infant mortality was still high. Nature keeps species healthy by weeding out the least fit. Of course we don’t like this, and modern medicine’s greatest achievement was disabling nature’s weeding out mechanism. Thereby greatly increasing average lifespan.

Ancient and primitive people could also die from warfare, and from accidents that caused infection, since they probably didn’t have much in the way of antibiotics or surgery.

But general health has NOT improved because of modern medicine. That is a myth.

We are, as a society, very sick, tormented by preventable chronic diseases. My friends who have heart disease and diabetes always say their bad health is genetic. That’s what their MDs told them. So of course they need the drugs and surgery to stay alive.

Just check out any graph of human population growth…you’ll see a very slow and steady increase (with dips for major wars, plagues, etc), until the advent of modern medicine.

And god forbid we don’t want millions of people dying of easily preventable diseases…and you dare call us evil?

You’re the one advocating for “nature to take its course & kill millions.”

Ancient techniques like drilling holes in the skull to reduce pressure, splinting broken limbs until the bones knit, using pharmaceuticals to reduce fever, dull pain and prevent infection?

Seems like we still use those techniques. We’re just a bit better at them now. More effective drugs, better bone repair methods, anaesthesia, better cleanliness.

What works, survives and grows. What doesn’t fades away.

There isn’t a single practical skill from the past that we cannot surpass with modern techniques, science and engineering.

Mystical energy though. It doesn’t change. Works all the time except when subjected to rigorous testing by people without a vested interest (when it doesn’t work at all). Easy for fraudsters to make a bit of dosh from since you can always blame the recipients faith/belief, or the environment, or interference waves from Andromeda if it doesn’t work. You can even direct it over the phone or the internet or by selling electronic amulets. Ain’t modern technology amazing?

What part of the foregoing was “ancient”?

For some people the 1970s are ancient history. My children frequently refer to it like that.

But then, big hair, bell-bottoms, platform shoes oh and leisure suits – perhaps the 1970s are better as ancient history.

Nature keeps species healthy by weeding out the least fit.

Wrong. “Fit” is not a continuous variable. Survive, reproduce, and Bob’s your uncle.

At this juncture, I would like to suggest that you go the back to the side of the road and wait for an empty turnip truck to take you back to wherever the fuck you came from.

But general health has NOT improved because of modern medicine. That is a myth

I beg to differ. Several studies have shown that the disability-free lifespan has increased significantly over the past 30 years, even greater than the overall increase in lifespan.

The study referenced below attributes this increase mainly due to improvements in cardiac care and treatment of visual problems, predominantly cataract surgery.
You know, modern medicine.

Here is a quote from one of the authors:

“Some of it is the result of people smoking less, and better diet, but we estimate that as much as half of the improvement is because of medical care, especially statin drug treatment, which is both preventing heart attacks and improving people’s recovery.”

https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2016/06/160606120039.htm

Anyway, Indie Rebel, your schtick is laughable and boring. We’ve heard it all before.
It’s no more true on the hundredth repetition than it was the first time around.

@IR: Oh fuck off for eternity, You. Egregious. Fucking. Bore,

You keep bladdering on here like you’re the smartest person in the room and everyone else is laughably ignorant. Well, guess what: you’re wrong both times, and still too fucking stupid to notice.

Or maybe it is us who are the stupid ones: for letting you play us.

Either way: if we simplify our arguments and abstract over the finer details, it is not because we are lazy or clueless but because we have infinitely more useful things to do with the rest of our lives than craft beautiful million-word treatises on The History and Science of the Universe all for some narcissistic nullo nitwit who we already know has absolutely zero interest in anything we write, simply because we’re all Far Too Atheeeeeeeeeeeeeist here to feed your ego the free fucking blowjobs it craves.

And how do we know this? Because you told us yourself!

So, one last time: please be certain to cut lengthways, not crossways, and enjoy your Ancient Alternative Medical Wisdom of bleeding out on the fucking bathroom floor.

Because—and I am being scrupulously honest with you here—even the thought of interacting with you just one minute more makes me want to slit my fucking wrists all the way up to the armpits. The opposite armpits.

And I’ll be fucked if I’d ever give a prating cockwomble like you the smug satisfaction of drawing my blood first, so I am out.

Therefore…Congratulations! 10/10; a Perfect Troll! Here’s your Victory By Attrition trophy. Sit it on it and spin.

What was child mortality before modern medicine ? Ancient methods obviously did not work.

@Indie Rebel General health is not improved ? What about infectious diseases that killed lots of adults.
Childrens who died when infant were not any way weaklings. Thisn one has been proved very long ago.

who “healed” rats with “ascites”

I’m morbidly curious how they induced ascites in rats, but I’m trying to resist.

@ Narad:

Although I’ve heard the tales many times, I’m not sure BUT it seems that the Hoary Old Fraud took rats that the orthodox scientists tested radiation and chemotherapy on ( though how ‘orthodox’ was it if it was run by Revici?) that were scheduled to be euthanised. Who had developed ascites? Which the healers cured? Through prayer and energy work?
These websites, videos, articles and radio recitatives are a treasure trove of quackery/ BS on a grand scale. -btw- the main site PRN.fm is down because they forget to pay the hosting fees so it’s strictly GaryNull.com

Now you’ve done it. Why wait when carbon tetrachloride is $263 for half a liter from Sigma? Right, Yukon Jack isn’t in the budget.

Fortunately,

<

blockquote>In Chinese medicine, external patching therapy for cirrhosis and ascites through application of a patch with drugs such as euphorbia gansui, mirabilite, and euphorbia on the body has a history extending thousands of years. This external patching therapy usually involved mixing drug powder with vinegar and pasting the mixture onto the patient’s navel.

@ Narad:

Please don’t drink anything bad.
In the meanwhile, I suggest you read about eft ** ( see Mercola eft technique)
I’m trying it out on the cat***. She exhibits no signs of anomie, angst or ennui so it must be working.

** not to be confused with etf, which are an entirely different thing
*** totally black, made her first appearance in the snow

Greg is encouraged to discuss the “science” behind Dr. Oz’s assertion that our astrological signs are determinants of our health, Oz’s “fat burner” promotions, his homeopathic starter kit or faith healing assertions.

You know, subjects that are relevant to this thread.

‘has”

“Moron. It doesn’t need a “very large conspiracy”, just poor number gathering at local level and some crooked epidemiology at national government level to tie that crap data in a self-serving report.”

Then of course you went on to post irrelevant stuff about bribes in India, in a story that was written before Covid. Again who is paying these officials to lie about the Covid numbers and why?

And then you go on about
“But okay, whatever boo, you keep playing your stupid distraction/deflection/derail games, folk are gonna conclude that the Indian govt aren’t the only scumballs with something to hide.”

My post is distraction/deflection/derail but your stuff is not……. look at all your intellectual arguments and snappy replies.

“Oh look, Kay West has got herself a little pet! Hump that leg, baby!….Too late, asshole….Thereby “proving” ( I must have missed that in logic class) to us you’re lying, you damn well know you’re lying, and you don’t give a flying crap that we both know you’re lying, because all you incontinent cockwombles …..vomitous murder-death cult how fecking dedicated and Speciaaaaaal you are. Like fcuking dogs pissing on the lamppost (this must be a new feature on female dogs to be able to see how high they can urinate)…….So fcuk you and your wall of noise about IPCC and houses (I believe that was one of the points Orac was making about Dr. Oz and the number of houses in owns) and every other bullshit distraction you puke out, because all you loathesome twunts will be the death of humanity… ( I didn’t know that I had the power to end humanity, is that kind of like a reset button or like one of those extra buttons on a remote nobody knows what they do)….Hump your god elsewhere. This is a blog about science, not autofellatio.”

Well Vicki would differ with your opinion.

“Vicki
says:
June 20, 2021 at 1:19 pm
For the thousandth time, if you don’t like what Orac posts, you don’t have to read it. He isn’t running a science news site, and never claimed to be.”

And no other female, that reads these posts, complained about calling another female a ‘twunts”.

Twunt
An unpleasant, irritable and largely annoying homo sapien who is a perfect combination of a twat and a cunt.
urbandictionary.

Joel
“Each of these estimates has shortcomings and they also diverge in the pattern of deaths between the two waves of the pandemic. Estimating COVID-deaths with statistical confidence may prove elusive. But all estimates suggest that the death toll from the pandemic is likely to be an order of magnitude greater than the official count of 400,000.”

I would tend to agree with your post about there being more that 400,000 deaths in India and that any count would be “elusive”, but other countries in the world had so few deaths from covid. It would be a very interesting study as to why the western countries have such high mortality and 2nd or 3rd world countries don’t. I am not an epidemiologist and not my field.

I posted on this topic to point out to ‘has’ is claiming this to be happening in India with corrupt numbers and few well placed people that are able to steer the “facts” away from true science as was in the Covid case, is happening to the global warming/climate change dialogue, by a handful of well placed data gathers, and high placed officials, reviewers and scientist. Who actually played with the numbers, (and actually made up numbers) and had others research suppressed. This was actually proven/exposed by their emails. “has” is willing to accept without evidence that this is occurring in India but denies it when it is really happening in global warming.

And I am with Greg on this I have kinda missed reading your post, but I am retired and have time to read and research your links. For future use cut off the Http etc. to post a link, in that way you bi-pass the delay in posting, which leads to delay in responses.

I posted on this topic to point out to ‘has’ is claiming this to be happening in India with corrupt numbers and few well placed people that are able to steer the “facts” away from true science as was in the Covid case, is happening to the global warming/climate change dialogue, by a handful of well placed data gathers, and high placed officials, reviewers and scientist.

Sophie, when you’ve got something resembling an English sentence to proffer, I might try parsing it.

And I am with Greg on this

That’s nice. It’s not much of a bandwagon, though, and I’d wager that at least one of you smells bad.

I have kinda missed reading your post, but I am retired and have time to read and research your links.

Protip: The string needs to connect the tin cans. HTH.

For future use cut off the Http etc. to post a link, in that way you bi-pass the delay in posting, which leads to delay in responses.

Lo and behold! A paradigm shift masquerading as ineptitude!!

@TBruce: “Some of it is the result of people smoking less, and better diet, but we estimate that as much as half of the improvement is because of medical care, especially statin drug treatment, which is both preventing heart attacks and improving people’s recovery.”

They ESTIMATE it’s mostly because of statin drugs. That article is just an ad for statin drugs!

A slight improvement in lifespan, which could be entirely explained by less smoking.

And this has nothing to do with what I said about average lifespan, and health, between prehistoric times and now.

I’m referring to disability-free lifespan, not overall lifespan. There are several studies demonstrating the same thing. Sorry, bud. In spite of your ranting, modern medicine is working. A few more years of disability-free living is a real gift to us geezers.

If you compare now to when half of Americans smoked cigarettes, then yes it’s a little better now. But if you compare here and now to more traditional societies — where physical activity is/was a necessary part of life, where food is natural and air and water are clean, we are not doing well at all.

Hmm, who should I trust to interpret a study? Scientists and physicians with faculty appointments and multiple peer-reviewed publications? Or an internet rando who believes in “energy” undetectable by any means, is a creationist, and claims to be an expert on experimental design but slithers out of proposing an experimental design when asked for one?

Gee,that’s a real dilemma.

“where physical activity is/was a necessary part of life, where food is natural and air and water are clean”

Ask a subsistence farmer how varied his diet is, whether his local water supply is clean and how healthy his family is.

I don’t disagree with the position that we aren’t living the the healthiest lifestyle. Or anything like a healthy lifestyle. Just your naive idea of a traditional (presumably self reliant) lifestyle.

@Indie Rebel Can you give us an example of such a natural society ? So we can check how healthy they are. Anything you said would stop an epidemic.

And this has nothing to do with what I said about average lifespan, and health, between prehistoric times and now.

You haven’t said a word about “prehistoric times” until now, remember? It was ancient times. Trying to hitch your hobby horse to “prehistory” is simply insulting to anyone who is still bothering to gaze at the cuneiform of your bowels.

I wonder if IR is aware that what is deemed “prehistoric” varies widely by region, such that a specific date might be “prehistoric” in the British isles and firmly “historic” in Iran?

“Prehistoric” really just means “before written history”, and given that written language didn’t develop at the same time all over the world, “prehistory” has about a thousand year range.

I wonder if IR has ever read the death rolls for London, that go back to the 11th century? That’s a fascinating exploration of 1) what people died of and 2) what people at the time thought that other people died of. (A lot of older babies died of “teeth” – at the time people thought that the act of teething could cause death.)

But no, no, I’m sure everything was idyllic and everyone lived to 80.

That natural food and water often came with natural parasites. They naturally hung around making your existence miserable until they naturally killed you. Lots of natural bacteria running around you had no treatment against, too. Often entering your body after you got into a fight with another tribe over resources they, naturally, didn’t want to share. Those natural bugs naturally ended your existence pretty rapidly, as well. Glorious times to be sure.

Another thing I love about this kind of bs is how easy it is to spout if you’re a wealthy person who has never struggled with obesity or chronic disease. My patients who work in ag fields all day long for pocket change and still have to come home and feed their kids would love it if they didn’t need to also buy meds. They can’t afford the luxury of a fantasy world where just “Eating clean” will solve their problems. Maybe one of those energy folks can come hover over them and knock their HbA1c down from 14 before they lose more sight or get another abscess.

Theist vs atheist: Supposedly Buddhists are atheists because they don’t worship personal gods, however, they do believe in some kind of universal intelligence. I believe the universe is infinitely intelligent, as in Buddhism, however it seems obvious to me that an infinitely intelligent universe would be capable of expressing itself in “personal” ways.

Buddhists are atheists because they don’t worship personal gods, however, they do believe in some kind of universal intelligence.

Not Mahayana.

Are you proposing faster than light nerve impulses? Maybe some kind of quantum entanglement process inside neuron-equivalents to keep widely spread sections in tune? Otherwise you’ve got a very slow thought process for the universe. Probably way to slow for us to ever even realise it’s thinking. Or, more likely, it would split into multiple separate consciousness zones where dust clouds are richer. Alternatively, it could be part of the dimensional structure of space/time but I’m not sure it would even notice us though. We’re not a big enough influence to affect it in any way.

@Indie Rebel To quote Dostoyeski: You can say many things about history, to satisfy the most pervert imagination. But one thing is impossible, you cannot say that it is rational. Tongue cannot be bend to utter such a thing.

Quacks: I had direct personal experience with a holistic “quack.” I generally believe in a more holistic approach to health, so I trusted this doctor. However, as it turned out he seemed mostly interested in promising patients eternal life, as long as they paid for his expensive supplements. It took me a while to realize he was more interested in raking in money than actually curing anyone of anything.

So I have no opinion on whether or not Dr. Oz is genuine. That was not my point here. I am against the mindless rejection of any kind of spiritual beliefs that I have observed at SBM over many years.

And they are much more likely to criticize holistic doctors than to be critical of mainstream practices. Such as the over-use of certain drugs. And deceptive statistics used by drug companies to “prove” their drugs are safe and effective. Etc.

SBM is outright pro-drug and intensely anti-spirituality.

Why do you equate spirituality with being a sucker for “energy medicine” and other quackery?

Are you some kind of atheist?

@Indie Rebel Tell your doctor to give you dietary advice. My guess is thar he or she is more than willing to give it to you.

Spirituality won’t clear a PE clot and stop that person from suffocating to death in agony. Heparin will.

@Aarno Syvänen “What was child mortality before modern medicine ? Ancient methods obviously did not work.”

Child mortality was high before modern medicine, and since modern medicine, maybe up until the 1950s. It was high in all times and places, and in all species. Child mortality is how nature keeps a species healthy. The biggest achievement of modern medicine was, it could be argued, the elimination of child mortality.

Of course, that contributes to our species being less healthy. (NO, I am not arguing for eugenics, just stating facts).

When you compare average lifespan now vs any time before mid 20th century, we look good now. But average lifespan is NOT a measure of health! People mistakenly think that ancient, primitive, prehistoric people were getting old and dropping dead in their 30s. NO.

“Child mortality is how nature keeps a species healthy.” – Citation needed on how whooping cough or measles carrying off half the children in a village changes or in any way “improves” the genetic material of the survivors, especially if the survivors include siblings of the children who died.

“People mistakenly think that ancient, primitive, prehistoric people were getting old and dropping dead in their 30s.”

It’s actually pretty unlikely that people here believe this. We’re generally aware of this statistical issue. But, as has been said before, average life span doesn’t address healthy lifespan. That’s “disability adjusted life years”, and when you look at anthropological analysis of historic or ancient cemeteries, you will see that plenty of people did die young, and those that lived longer often lived with conditions from the unpleasant to the completely debilitating. Like osteoarthritis (very common) and tooth decay and tooth loss (which could result in people being unable to feed themselves without assistance of someone else to chew their food for them), to amputations and improperly healed broken bones.

So yes, modern bone setting and physical therapy have made people’s lives healthier. Along with antibiotics (now you’re less likely to die of pneumonia at 30), surgical techniques and insulin. (Not to mention modern food systems, so that food is free of dangerous pathogens and available outside of the growing season.)

All of which has absolutely nothing to do with the spiritual beliefs, or lack thereof, of anyone.

“and tooth decay and tooth loss (which could result in people being unable to feed themselves without assistance”

When I was very young I helped out on an archaeological dig in a medieval graveyard. One of the skulls we found had teeth so covered in plaque that you could barely see them. When the crowd of interested spectators included children, they used to show them the teeth and tell them that this is what will happen if you don’t brush.

No, they were dropping dead from disease, famine and war…a simple cut was enough to lead to sepsis and death.

But tell us again how it’s perfectly okay to let millions of folks die in the name of “bettering the species.”

And let’s not forget that dying of a simple cut isn’t something from 300 years ago: my grandmother wrote in her memoirs about when she was a child the son of the President of the US died of an infected blister, so all the kids were extra careful of their blisters (for a while). That happened in the 21st century.

Think of all the ways that a person can get a blister. Generally it’s not from “being weak”.

that dying of a simple cut isn’t something from 300 years ago

Really, until the invention of antibiotics.

Albert Alexander is a well-known example of the effectiveness of antibiotics, and of what can happen if there isn’t sufficient supply. Albert Alexander died in 1941, of consequences of an infected cut caused by a rose thorn.

Child mortality is how nature keeps a species healthy.

Rah rah rah rah slavery sis boom bah!

“Nature” has no goals, intentions, secret desires, pen pals, or coy smiles, dumbfυck.

@Indie Rebel No it is very important to you believe that nature has a goals (like weaning out weaklings).

@ Indie Rebel

“People mistakenly think that ancient, primitive, prehistoric people were getting old and dropping dead in their 30s. NO.”

I agree that there are misconceptions. For instance, considering child mortality: that skews the picture. If you consider the time remaining to live for an existing individual, it is mechanically higher from the time remaining to live of a newborn. Child mortality is smoothed out with the first statistic whereas it’s not with the second number. And it does have moral implications when assessing the whole picture.

But the whole picture is not merely about personal health.

For instance, a theory explaining the chronic underdevelopment of Africa has been this one: the only way to mitigate the spread of epidemics in the african continent was to put two or three miles between villages, stay away from water (which is why you see african women carrying water on quite a distance: it’s not just for kicks, but traditional “knowledge” to avoid spreading diseases) and forbid concentration of people in big cities. Pre-colonisation era.

It’s not medicine that brings diseases. It’s civilisation and commerce. Travel routes. So medicine has to keep up with the evolution of society.

There’s no turning back on it. “Spirituality” has nothing to do with it. “Spirituality” does not forbid building up a civilisation. Quite the opposite in fact.

“Spirituality” is not spiritism. And Spirituality that rejects Science is not Spirituality. But Spirituality has a right to criticise Science. And Science has a right to criticise Spirituality. When they both play by the rules, there’s much less friction. The thing is: Organised Religion has decided not to play by the rules, and bypass criticism. Spirituality, which is not supposed to be Organised Religion per se, is free to play by the rules. Or not. And then get blamed if not.

When Power Plays masquerade as Science, they should be called out. Otherwise Science should be defended. At all costs. And a Spirituality which rejects Science rejects the only productive way to produce reliable knowledge. And therefore cannot pretend to be Spirituality. Since Spirituality also seeks knowledge.

Spirituality may criticise Science. Not reject it out of principle. Because you cannot decently reject methodology and logical thinking if you’re serious about Spirituality.

Which I am not. Not at all.

But it is Science that has liberated women. With the pill. And will keep liberating them. Not Spirituality. Organised Religion will bash women down. Whereas Spirituality still has a choice to acknowledge the role of Science in building up a civilisation. If it plays down the role of Science, it will go down the same road as Organised Religion. And end in the same bin.

Your choice.

@JustaTech “I wonder if IR is aware that what is deemed “prehistoric” varies widely by region, such that a specific date might be “prehistoric” in the British isles and firmly “historic” in Iran?

“Prehistoric” really just means “before written history”, and given that written language didn’t develop at the same time all over the world, “prehistory” has about a thousand year range.

I wonder if IR has ever read the death rolls for London, that go back to the 11th century? That’s a fascinating exploration of 1) what people died of and 2) what people at the time thought that other people died of. (A lot of older babies died of “teeth” – at the time people thought that the act of teething could cause death.)

But no, no, I’m sure everything was idyllic and everyone lived to 80.”

No. You have misunderstood. It is easy to think of times and places where poverty and disease were rampant. But there also have been times and places where population density was low and food was plentiful. More likely in hunting/gathering societies.

Agriculture started the process of messing things up — it made it possible for populations to expand, resulting in increased warfare, social inequality, poverty and disease. And living mostly on grains is not very healthy for our species.

There have been societies that were idyllic compare to ours, and there still are some, which have been studied. Of course traditional lifestyles are dying out.

And living mostly on grains is not very healthy for our species.

Jesus, the shit just keeps climbing the banks.

If “living mostly on grains is not very healthy for our species” then I wonder why the human population didn’t explode until after the agricultural revolution, which, among other things, evens out the availability of calories throughout the year?

Yeah, if you’re a hunter/gatherer you’ve got a lot more time for lounging around compared to a farmer, but you also spend way more time living on the edge of starvation.

Yo, the past sucked! It hurt!

@ Indie Rebel

“There have been societies that were idyllic compare to ours, and there still are some, which have been studied. Of course traditional lifestyles are dying out.”

Name me one.

I’m not a big fan of the modern age, but let’s see what society, in which place and which time, you believe to be better than modern ones.

Traditional lifestyles which involve killing your daughter out of shame when she gets raped or smothering women in trash bags do not exactly happen to be my favourites. Try picking traditional lifestyles where that doesn’t or didn’t happen too often.

(Mind you: I’m the type of person that believe indigeneous cultures should be defended against cultural and religious encroachment, encroachment which may well be that of modern ideas and modern norms where their applicability is… ahum… doubtful, but which may also be encroachment of more contemporary and well established religious movements counting in the billion(s)…).

@Lawrence “No, they were dropping dead from disease, famine and war…a simple cut was enough to lead to sepsis and death.

But tell us again how it’s perfectly okay to let millions of folks die in the name of ‘bettering the species.'”

If you’re talking to me, I never said ” it’s perfectly okay to let millions of folks die in the name of ‘bettering the species.'” Or anything like that. Nature obviously thinks it’s ok, but that is besides the point.

The point was that child mortality drastically lowers average lifespan. So when you are told that prehistoric people barely survived to age 30, that is misleading. You imagine them being sick and decrepit in their 20s, when just the opposite was probably true. If they survived childhood and warfare, and infections from injuries, they probably lived as long as we do, in a much healthier state.

European explorers and settlers in America were impressed with how healthy the natives looked. You think it was statin drugs that kept them so healthy?

“European explorers and settlers in America were impressed with how healthy the natives looked.”

OMG. Yes of course farmers who’s culture is adapted to their environment are going to “look healthy” compared to people who just spent two months at sea eating hardtack and trying to use inappropriate farming methods and therefore starve.

Also, do you know why those Europeans made those comments about the appearance of the indigenous peoples? They were sizing them up for slavery!

You really need to go down to your local library and do some reading because there are some astonishing holes in your knowledge base.

European explorers and settlers in America were impressed with how healthy the natives looked.

“And living mostly on grains is not very healthy for our species.”

Thank goodness they weren’t already dependent on corn. Oh, wait.

@Indie Rebel There were contagious diseases that killed adults. They definitely lowered the lifespan.

@Narad “‘Nature’ has no goals, intentions, secret desires, pen pals, or coy smiles, dumbfυck.”

And Narad knows all this because God told him.

And Narad knows all this because God told him.

Hmm. To “Peace Frog” or not to “Peace Frog”?

It’s not my fault that you are willing to babble on and on about things that you really haven’t the first idea about and instead compensate with evasion, anthropomorphism, childishness, occultism, cosmic minds, and all sorts of dualistic rubbish. You really should have stuck with Etsy. See if you can get a deal on 500 mics.

Have you checked in with Comet Leonard for any messages yet? Comets don’t visit for the sake of whistlin’ Dixie, after all.

@ Indie Rebel

“‘Nature’ has no goals, intentions, secret desires, pen pals, or coy smiles, dumbfυck.” — Narad

“And Narad knows all this because God told him.” — Indie Rebel

Well, on a personal note, nope, God didn’t tell me that.

I keep inviting him for dinner to have a chat over some wine and some saucisson, but, up to now, he has declined.

I’ll ask him when he decides to drop by drops by. If he has goals, intentions, secret desires, pen pals, etc…

But, there’s a guy who indeed told me that Nature has none of that. Precisely.

“That by the decrees and volitions, and consequently the providence of God, Scripture (as I will prove by Scriptural examples) means nothing but Nature’s order following necessarily from her eternal laws.” ― Baruch Spinoza

“Nature has no goals for itself. All consequences are results of human inventions.” — Baruch

“To be what we are, and to become what we are capable of becoming, is the only end in life.” — Baruch

“Further conceive, I beg, that a stone, while continuing in motion, should be capable of thinking and knowing, that it is endeavoring, as far as it can, to continue to move. Such a stone, being conscious merely of its own endeavor and not at all indifferent, would believe itself to be completely free, and would think that it continued in motion solely because of its own wish. This is that human freedom, which all boast that they possess, and which consists solely in the fact, that men are conscious of their own desire, but are ignorant of the causes whereby that desire has been determined.” — Baruch

“That eternal and infinite being we call God, or Nature [Deus sive Natura], acts from the same necessity from which he exists.” — Baruch

Free Will does not exist. Nor for a stone, nor for a man, nor for Nature. Nor for God.

Baruch explained it all black on white 400 years ago. It should be common knowledge by now. Specifically for people interested in “Spirituality”.

To sum it up:

“No matter how thin you slice it, there will always be to sides.” — Baruch, again.

And to put the final nail in the coffin:

“Whatsoever is contrary to nature is contrary to reason, and whatsoever is contrary to reason is absurd.” — Baruch.

So much for this being a SBM site or even an educational site.

has
says:
December 6, 2021 at 7:55 pm

You need help, not attention. Ideally from the business end of a shotgun.

has
says:
December 6, 2021 at 8:13 am

#FuckOffGerg

has
says:
December 6, 2021 at 5:04 am

This is a blog about science, not autofellatio.

has
says:
December 6, 2021 at 4:23 am

So kindly fcuk off and go conduct your holy-rolling auto-fellatio somewhere in private so we don’t have to watch your disgusting spooge show any more.

has
says:

Oh look, Kay West has got herself a little pet! Hump that leg, baby!
Too late, asshole…..because all you incontinent cockwombles care about is Lying For The Cause: virtue-signalling to the rest of your vomitous murder-death cult how fecking dedicated and Speciaaaaaal you are. Like fcuking dogs pissing on the lamppost, each determined to show that he’s the Top Dog now.
So fcuk you and your wall of noise about IPCC and houses and every other bullshit distraction you puke out, because all you loathesome twunts will be the death of humanity. and at this point

has
says:
December 6, 2021 at 4:50 am

Oh, girls, girls, you’re both pretty!

has
says:
December 5, 2021 at 4:15 am

So eff you, Kay West. You really are dirt

has
says:
December 6, 2021 at 8:46 pm

Far Too Atheeeeeeeeeeeeeist here to feed your ego the free fucking blowjobs it craves.

And of course Denise nor Dorit objected to the term “twunts” as being sexist nor being called “girls,girls”. Is your position/ego so tenuous that you must rely on people like ‘has’ for your support?

“And no other female, that reads these posts, complained about calling other females ‘twunts”.

Twunt
An unpleasant, irritable and largely annoying homo sapien who is a perfect combination of a twat and a cunt.
urbandictionary.”

As to me being called ‘dirt’ coming from a thing like ‘has’ is a ‘good thing’

And of course Denise nor Dorit objected to the term “twunts” as being sexist nor being called “girls,girls”

Far be it for me to puncture your rant, but it was myself and Dangerous Bacon that has referred to as “girls, girls”. Now I can’t say what gender a slice or two of bacon would identify with, but I am certain has knows my gender.

Personally, I think your focus on how bad the insults are is a distraction from the fact that you cannot argue on the evidence.

Now I can’t say what gender a slice or two of bacon would identify with, but I am certain has knows my gender.

Personally, I think your focus on how bad the insults are is a distraction from the fact that you cannot argue on the evidence.

You are correct, of course. And yes, I did set out the narc bait just to test a hypothesis and have a bit of evil fun in the process. Because, unlike Kay West and her revoltingly dishonst ilk, I do not beat other people down to make myself superior, but rather drag the bad ’uns right down with me and let others form their own comparison.

Also, since Kay West rejects the moniker “twunt” (even though she’s perfectly happy to dine out on it, I’ll note), I hereby permanently revoke that identifier and furthermore I apologize immediately and unreservedly to all female genitals which—unlike Kay West—are pleasant and useful and actually deserving of their place on this Earth.

Kay West shall hereinafter be called a flying spunking jizz monkey; an exclusive title previously created just for the comparably abusive and considerably stupider Roger which the two of them will now just have to share between them, because that’s all the two of them worth. That’s you get, numnuts, for failing to appreciate how I was being Kind.

So, with apologies once more to our lovely host for the now-awful state of his carpets, I once again [and absolutely definitely will-stick-to-it-this-time] bid you all Adieu until next time, folks; all you Shits and Johnsons both.

HAS (evil sadistic basturt, 100% nob; definitely coming back in the next life as a cat)

Thank you for making it much easier to laugh out loud at those gems for a second time after a long day taking care of people that nature forgot. Maybe nature said “Screw this guy in particular” when giving a healthy, athletic, middle aged male MGUS and RA. Maybe it was the grains. Maybe it was a trickster spirit angry that we soiled the perfect, Pre-Columbian existence around these parts.

@F68.10 “Atheism is right.

Period.”

Haha. Some atheists are almost as narrow-minded as fundamentalist Christians.

@ Indie Rebel

“Haha. Some atheists are almost as narrow-minded as fundamentalist Christians.”

Absolutely not. Fundamentalist Christians claim that they have the Truth and then deny to even themselves the ability to reach the Truth because (gasp!!!) idolatry !!!

Whereas, we know God doesn’t exist. When we’re honest with ourselves for, say, ten minutes.

For very simple reasons: 1. all proofs of the existence of God are bogus. There’s none on the market of ideas left. All debunked thoroughly. Extremely thoroughly. 2. Russell’s teapot proves agnosticism not to be a tenable position.

Only tenable position is atheism. And then, methodologically speaking, you’ve got critical rationalism bumping in the scenery, stating the conjectural nature of all knowledge, which destroys any shaming obsessions about Absolute Truth christians may attempt to project.

Christians may then try to play the rational excuse for irrationality based on Sextus Empiricus’ Tu Quoque Argument. Also has been thoroughly debunked. By Bartley in the 1984 reedition of his Theology PhD.

There is nothing left standing of the theistic position, philosophically speaking. To put it bluntly, it’s in ruins. Shattered. To pieces. Like a Broken Idol. And God itself is an Idol, as Leo Ferré did put it…

The theistic position only remains vivid in popular consciousness. And plays the social pressure card to convince or coerce. But has nothing left for it, intellectually speaking.

You’ve therefore got serious work to do, if you’re serious about Knowledge and hence Spirituality… The 300 pages PhD thesis by Bartley is the nail in the coffin when you’ll be at the end of the Yellow Brick Road. Get down to work and business, Dorothy…

In the meantime, I suggest meditating on that following quote by Karl Barth, the 20th century foremost christian theologian, and foremost by far. (I suggest the Bronze Age Gāyatrī Mantra for emotional support.)

“A criticism of Reason is not in itself an analogy of the Cross of Christ. The bottomless pits of our ignorance are not in themselves the inherent depth of God. It is not because the human mind despairs that the Holy Ghost is present. […] The thesis according to which God is beyond understanding, the confession of a learned ignorance [reference to Nicolaus Cusanus’ De Docta Ignorantia, for the uninitiated…] itself lies in a very ambiguous manner between [sinful] self-depreciation of humanity and [sinful] self-exaltation of humanity, as it undoubtedbly has been the case in the 18th century (and, in both cases, this may well be completely senseless from a christian point of view (…)) Yes, God is unconceivable – God ! But it is pride and rebellion to anticipate on this unconceivability and to appropriate it.” — Karl Barth, Göttingen Dogmatics, 1924-1925.

Stay clear from shirk, buddy…

And do not try to play that little game with me. You’ll lose. Final Warning.

“all proofs of the existence of God are bogus.”

Philosophers and theologians have wasted many years of life trying to prove or disprove “gods.” It’s mostly a bunch of nonsense.

Rational arguments for spiritual levels of reality comes from many different sources, including modern physics. David Bohm’s “implicate orders” is a good one, for example.

And many, many others, including the work of rational scientists who explore the “paranormal.”

@ Indie Rebel

“Philosophers and theologians have wasted many years of life trying to prove or disprove “gods.” It’s mostly a bunch of nonsense.”

Nope. Not nonsense. History of thought. Hence history of science. Medieval scholarship has never been “nonsense”. Someone like Duns Scotus should not be laughed upon like you just did.

“Rational arguments for spiritual levels of reality comes from many different sources, including modern physics. David Bohm’s “implicate orders” is a good one, for example.”

I know De Broglie – Bohm’s pilot wave theory.

If you want to defend David Bohm’s “implicate orders”, then defend it.

But do not expect me or anyone to just bow down because you wrote “implicate orders” using quotation marks or just because you named David Bohm in a sentence.

“And many, many others, including the work of rational scientists who explore the “paranormal.””

Show me the results.

@has “What differentiates us from you is that we have come to recognize when, how, and why we are doing it; and why doing so is utterly, fundamentally incompatible with forming an honest, reliable understanding of how this universe works. So we make a conscious effort NOT to deceive ourselves, and all you do is roll in here and arrogantly piss on it.”

Haha, love it! You figured out how the universe works. It takes EFFORT to hang on to that kind of precarious understanding, does it? How arrogant of me to piss on your certainty. So sorry. Oh, that must hurt.

@Indie Rebel You missed words “deceive yourselves”. Though actually, there is not much work needed here.

@F68.10

You “know” that “god” doesn’t exist. But I know that the universe is intelligent. So we know different things. That is how it goes, people don’t all agree. I don’t know why some of you atheists feel a need to cancel all opposing views. You have no evidence, and my evidence is not going to convince you. No need to act like rabid dogs off your meds. People having different opinions from yours is not going to harm you somehow, is it?

@ Indie Rebel

“That is how it goes, people don’t all agree.”

Nope. That’s not how it goes. Truth Matters.

“But I know that the universe is intelligent. So we know different things.”

Then prove it. Otherwise, it’s just hot air.

I read you’re buddhist oriented. And you know the Universe is Intelligent ??

Do you know that buddhists deny the existence of Atman ?

Do you know that advaitins claim Atman exist ?

Technically they are both wrong to even think they disagree.

According to their own texts, buddhists claim that Atman is “minus 0”. And advaitins claim that Atman is “plus 0”.

Spoiler: -0 = +0.

Try educating me about “Intelligent Universe”.

“I don’t know why some of you atheists feel a need to cancel all opposing views.”

I do not feel a need to cancel “opposing views”. I feel a need, a duty, even, to oppose bullshit. Because I take knowledge seriously.

I am not an atheist because I just want to piss off believers. I am an atheist because I am a rationalist.

And theists have been pushing a socially nefarious agenda for millenia which continues to this day. Which is why I oppose theism. Sternly.

I do not oppose reasoned discussion on metaphysical topics. Because that falls in the purview of Knowledge and hence Science, no matter how brittle the arguments may be. And no matter how shallow the knowledge thus attained may be.

Metaphysical discussions have laid down over the centuries the epistemological foundations from which science did emerge from the 16th century onwards. So I do not shy away from recognising the connection, and discussing it to clear misconceptions.

But in a context where religious discussions worldwide become completely senseless and irrational and devolve in beheadings and murders in certain parts of the world and 100 % irrational political behaviours in my own country with our Messiah Zemmour, yes, I think it’s time to confront irrationality wherever it rises.

Whether it rises in the religious sphere or the scientific sphere. Or the political sphere. Or anywhere, really.

“You have no evidence.”

Of course I have evidence. I laid it forth in another comment.

“…my evidence is not going to convince you.”

Depends.

“No need to act like rabid dogs off your meds.”

No need to be uncivil with a contender for the World Title of the most hated mental patient.

“People having different opinions from yours is not going to harm you somehow, is it?”

Oh, yes, it does harm people to have wrong opinions. Beliefs have Consequences. For instance, believing nonsense about medical matters may lead you to medically abuse your own offspring, torture him and perhaps kill him. Truth Does Matter. So try to compartimentalise a bit your medical beliefs from your “spiritual” ones, m’kay ?

But I won’t burn you at the stake.

If only I could clear your misconceptions about what science is and why (some / most ?) religious people gleefully pour oil on the fire in order to establish their moral and intellectual hegemony and hence bypass criticism, I’ll have done my job.

I do not oppose their right to an opinion or “belief”. Nope. I oppose their belief that they should be allowed to push their Truth unchallenged. I oppose complacency.

You are a “rationalist,” but I am rational.

Science is focused on things that can be perceived with the physical senses or with instruments. Everything that is beyond that is invisible to science.

So you really have no reason to fight like mad over spiritual beliefs. If you prefer to focus on what you can sense or measure, I don’t care. But anger and contempt towards those of us who can “see” beyond is something I don’t understand. How does my ability to connect with spiritual levels of information harm you?

@ Indie Rebel

“You are a “rationalist,” but I am rational.”

Bwahahahahah !!!

“Science is focused on things that can be perceived with the physical senses or with instruments. Everything that is beyond that is invisible to science.”

Nope. Nice Try.

Definition of science: what is not BS.

If you make a decent case of any claim beyond physical senses, it remains an argument. It still has a logical structure. That logical structure may or may not be sound. Whether it is sound or not is a scientific question.

Even if it does not pertain to physical senses or instruments.

The hard problem of consciousness is largely beyond instrumentation or physical senses. It remains a scientific question.

The questions of Leibniz’s monads pertaining to the explanation of matter was at the time beyond physical senses or instrumentation. It was metaphysical. Beyond physics.

It remains that physics has found a way to investigate the question of Leibniz’s monads. Ruđer Josip Bošković did the grunt work in the 18th century that paved the way for that. And what was metaphysics became physics. Physics is science, but metaphysics, as proven by this example, has always been part of Science.

“So you really have no reason to fight like mad over spiritual beliefs.”

Of course I do. When a religion claims that is The Solution to every problem in the world, such a massive claim replete with Hubris has real life consequences. And is therefore a legitimate target for intellectual food fight.

When psychiatry, i.e. what is said to be science, happens to be in conflict with religion or spiritual beliefs, or complacent with them, it also has real life consequences.

Spiritual beliefs are not a game. Genocides have played out in history for millenia over them. Don’t trivialise the matter.

“If you prefer to focus on what you can sense or measure, I don’t care.”

What I care about is that your spiritual claims do not disregard “measurable” evidence when they come in conflict with your “spiritual” beliefs. Happened many times over. Darwin’s theory of species is a case in point with serious repercussions.

Your spiritual beliefs do not deserve a free pass against any legit criticism. Science neither deserves a free pass from genuine criticism, and spirituality may well raise moral claims about practices claimed to be science.

All that’s legit. No free pass.

“But anger and contempt towards those of us who can “see” beyond is something I don’t understand.”

Challenging your claims is neither “anger” nor “contempt”. You’re playing a cheap victim card, here.

You make claims. I challenge them. It’s legit.

“How does my ability to connect with spiritual levels of information harm you?”

It may or it may not. If your claimed “ability” devolves into medical obligations that apply on children other than yours (or even yours, BTW) and jeopardize their health, it does matter. cf. vaccines.

This is the problem with alternative medicine. Faith healing means dead babies. And tiny cute coffins.

I have no issues with people making spiritual claims. Here’s a zoroastrian YouTube interview which I had great pleasure watching and educating myself with, for instance…

I’m just making the case, and a valid one at that, that no Spirituality can make a claim to Truth if it rejects Science out of principle. Such Spiritualities are not Spritualities. In much the same way that, no, Terrorism is indeed not a Religion. Or shouldn’t be considered as such by any sensible human being.

Science is focused on things that can be perceived with the physical senses or with instruments. Everything that is beyond that is invisible to science.

Uh-huh.

How does my ability to connect with spiritual levels of information harm you?

How do you perceive “your ability”?

The notion that you’re the rational one while prancing around sprinkling mystification hither and yon (not to mention being shot down six ways to Sunday on routine, McPozzm, statements and then ignoring the responses or changing the subject*) would need work to reach the level of low comedy.

*As for harm, aside from wasting everybody’s time in a hemorrhage of bad faith, it’s a bit more obnoxious than that.

The spiritual four-flusher visiting a Psychedelian community should avoid saying things like “the vibrations around here are terrible” or “I’m a witch, you know” or, “oh sure, I talk to trees all the time myself,” but of all the comments likely to enrage his hosts, “I can do anything you can do but I don’t need LSD to do it,” or words to that effect, are provocation in a class by itself.

It’s like saying, “the law can’t touch me, baby” while drunk and disorderly in a Chicago police station at 3 a.m. It’s an insult to the honor of the group, and something has to be done about it.

Now, again, why did you ooze over here? To vent your spleen about SBM? This isn’t SBM, and your (entirely predictable) whining about it is apropos of exactly nothing.

I’ve been sitting here for the past hour with a handful of transistors, chips and prototype boards trying to determine the optimum packing density. I consulted the spirits and they obligingly peered over my shoulder as I experimented with various arrangements. After a while they shook their heads and told me that I was on my own. Then they vanished in a puff of unreason. Next time I’ll know better and consult the gods.

Oh, right:

How does my ability to connect with spiritual levels of information harm you?

What “levels”? How many buttons are on the “spiritual” elevator? How is the “spiritual information” packaged? How do you distinguish yourself from moronic creeps such as Aleister Crowley?

As I’ve already noted, right now you are indistinguishable from a Scientologist.

You ask about what harm it might cause? How about the children who have died because their parents said that the power of prayer was all that was required to heal them? Or the children abused or killed because of ‘witchcraft’ beliefs in some cultures?

“atheists feel a need to cancel all opposing views”

Well, I suppose atheists are just as sure of their position as theists. Why do theists feel a need to cancel all opposing views (missionary work/door knocking and religious pogroms)?

However, your confounding factor here is science. People with a logical/science attitude don’t want to cancel all opposing views. They want those views to be presented with evidence. Evidence determined by non-biased methods. If you could show experimental results, obtained using rigorous testing methods, indicating the ability of human beings to detect and manipulate a so far undiscovered type of energy field AND that the experiment has been replicated by various other teams, you’d be onto a winner.

You can’t trust the science done by religious people to determine the existence of god because the people carrying out the experiment are incapable of visualising there being no god. They will simply see every result through the lens of faith in the existence of god.

The same principle applies to science in general. In order to control this, trial methods have been developed to eliminate bias in results and interpretations. I won’t say that it works every time but there’s a framework there to allow every other scientist to evaluate the reliability of your results. If you can’t use that framework to produce positive results then you can’t prove your position. See also, Tooth Fairy science.

“People mistakenly think that ancient, primitive, prehistoric people were getting old and dropping dead in their 30s.”

Yes, in olden times if in infancy you survived infectious diseases, malnutrition and accidents you stood a good chance of making it to adulthood – where, if you didn’t perish from infectious diseases (anything from sepsis due to injury to being part of a pandemic), accidents (i.e. working in hazardous jobs like mining etc.), malnutrition or being sent off to war to die as cannon fodder, you could live a full four score and ten in relatively decent condition.

*Primitive peoples also didn’t have to cope with hucksters’ remedies like Dr. Oz’s Magic Elixir, good for what ails you.

Yes you can exaggerate and select examples of times and places where things were bad. Or you could be objective, and notice that there have been times and places where people were much healthier than now.

How many modern Americans are going blind and having their limbs cut off because of diabetes? How many are disabled by arthritis or dementia? These things are epidemic now. And Gorski thinks it’s anti-science to care about lifestyle and diet.

Or you could be objective, and notice that there have been times and places where people were much healthier than now.

Well, you’ve already tried and failed with the Indians and Pilgrims. Maybe you should move on to a documentary.

And Gorski thinks it’s anti-science to care about lifestyle and diet.

Straw Man. Orac is calling out the propensity to view healthy living as a panacea. It’s not.

And Gorski thinks it’s anti-science to care about lifestyle and diet.

Wherever did you get that ridiculous idea? Indeed, I’ve mentioned on several occasions how, though changes in diet (a lot fewer calories and less bad stuff) and lifestyle (specifically a lot more exercise), I lost over 50 lbs in around a year and a half, and how that weight loss enabled me to stop taking one of the two blood pressure drugs that I had been taking before and lower the dose of the other one by two-thirds. Unfortunately, genetics still rules, and I’ve given up trying to get off of antihypertensives entirely, but clearly I made a huge improvement in my health through the dreaded lifestyle and diet changes. Compared to 3-4 years ago, I’m much thinner and healthier.

What I do object to are pseudoscientific and exaggerated appeals to lifestyle and diet that claim that they can do either what they can’t do or way more than they can do. Such appeals are often fused with quackery as well. “Indie Rebel” might also not be aware that lifestyle and diet changes are in evidence-based guidelines for major chronic diseases. For instance the ADA recommendations for newly diagnosed type 2 diabetes recommend dietary changes, weight loss, and exercise as first interventions before drugs. Ditto the AHA’s recommendations for newly diagnosed mild to moderate hypertension. This claim that supporters of science-based medicine “hate” lifestyle and dietary interventions and consider them pseudoscience and quackery is just plain bullshit. It’s claims that such interventions are panaceas that we detest.

Oh Indie. You really need to read some more history.

Lots of people in the past had severe arthritis. We know this because arthritis leaves marks on the bones that are still visible hundreds or even thousands of years later. This is because arthritis is often a consequence of hard, repetitive manual labor. Like farming. Or fishing.

Before the 20th century, do you know what happened to people with diabetes? Not amputations, generally, no they just died. Slowly and terribly.

Let’s look at some “then and now”:

Leprosy: Then, living death. Now, extremely treatable with a short course of medication.
Cancer: Then, death. Now, many treatments (because cancer is many diseases), some with very good overall survival. Also, two preventative vaccines.

Malaria: Then, very dangerous (and more widespread). Now, more limited range, more treatments, possibly a vaccine. Still kills far, far, far too many children.

Epilepsy: Then, uncontrollable seizures, eventually death. Now, controllable with medication and sometimes surgery (and also not being burned as a witch).

Here are some other modern things that improve people’s health:
Window screens. Yes, seriously. Before effective wire screens were invented there were just insects in your house all the time. Especially flies in your food. Flies carry disease. (Ever wonder why the Victorians had so many round cloths with beads sewn to the edges? They were for covering open bowls and pots and jugs to keep the flies out.)

Better sealed houses in general. Central heating (less indoor air pollution, better at preventing cold-induced injuries). Plumbing (for so very many reasons, but an oft-missed one was the number of people, usually women, who drowned fetching water).

Go read some interviews with historians and archeologists and experimental historians – people who test out living like humans did in the past. They’ll tell you that not everything was terrible, but none of them would just give up everything from modern life. Because it is safer and healthier.

Chris I really don’t care what sex you or bacon are or denice nor dorit, the term “twunts’ is sexist. As I pointed out. it is a derogatory term for a FEMALE combining the word “twit” with the word “c8nts”. If you stand by and allow sexist, racist, homophobic terms to be used against your opponents, then you lose standing to complain about them being used against you.

It is admirable that you would try to take an arrow for the social misprint that ‘has’ is. As to argue with ‘has’ using two year old evidence on corruption in India to support his ‘belief’ that the Indians are under counting covid deaths. My question to that is to what end would you under count covid deaths. Their is no money (UN/World Health etc.) in under counting deaths. Even the sources cited here claim a 10% under count which is still a lot lower death rate then the US.

As to ‘has’

“When you resort to name calling you have lost the argument.”

“using two year old evidence on corruption in India to support his ‘belief’ that the Indians are under counting covid deaths. My question to that is to what end would you under count covid deaths. Their is no money (UN/World Health etc.) in under counting deaths.”

I can’t be arsed to go back over the whole conversation but there doesn’t have to be any malfeasance for India to under-count covid deaths. The country is bloody massive. It has a massive population. A huge amount of it’s population is very poor and has limited access to doctors. It wasn’t that long ago they were having brawls in the streets due to a lack of oxygen for ventilators. The idea that it is even remotely possible for the Indian bureaucracy to accurately count covid deaths under those circumstances is ridiculous. Therefore the number of covid deaths is higher than officially recognised.

@ NumberWang @ Kay West

“The idea that it is even remotely possible for the Indian bureaucracy to accurately count covid deaths under those circumstances is ridiculous.”

The indian administration is a huge mess. You can live in india as an illegal alien and through many many loopholes legally acquire rights you could only have as a national. Among many crazy things. It’s not a functioning state on many levels. It does manage to get things done, but not in the sense a modern state should be getting things done.

I recently followed the Param Bir Singh scandal. The idea that the director general of the police of the economic heartland of India, Mumbai, could be on the run for almost a year in a case of extortion, and mingled in so many nonsense such as the Antilia Bomb Scare… kind of says it all. And that’s the tip of the iceberg of the Param Bir Singh scandal…

@ Joel A. Harrison

“However, as I wrote above, Modi is demolishing India’s democracy, turning it into a right-wing autocracy, etc.”

I have to respectfully disagree.

The indian left wing and indian so-called secularists are crazy. I did not know so much about that country a year or two ago, but I’m now very happy Modi is in power.

For an extremist, he’s a very lenient extremist.

And the more I hear the indian muslim minority defending themselves, the more I believe they are very far from being the poor victims they pretend to be. Seems like they still have their anti-idolatry agenda, which is simply not a legit position to have in a polytheistic country. They are still raging on and on about the Babri Masjid and the Ram temple in construction. This has become overly ridiculous.

I do not support freedom of religion when freedom of religion means the way indian muslims behave in India, spouting endless bigotry on their fellow hindus in Friday sermons. Well not all of them, as indian muslims overall made a choice not to endorse the two nations theory. But when I look at Pakistan, Kashmir and the statement of pro-muslim politicians in Uttar Pradesh such as the Samajwadi Party… nope… I cannot defend the muslim minority in that context. Just cannot. An ideological rebalancing clearly is necessary in India as Congress, secularists and marxists have done too much damage over the years. And, yes, there needs to be an hinduisation of curriculum of, say, history in schools and university. It is not possible to have textbooks in such a country where military victories of muslim invaders are lauded and where anything indigeneous is scorned at. I indeed now do believe hindu nationalists are right when they claim that they suffered a double colonisation: mughals and brits.

I know that this is considered fascistic to say this in India, but it is not possible that religion overrules the state when it comes to marital law as is currently the case. The hot topic of the Uniform Civil Code is something the BJP and hindu nationalists are 100 % right to attempt to enforce. And for a fascistic government, I do think they’re taking it at an incredibly slow speed… They are very very lenient nazis…

I just really cannot compare hindu nationalists with my own homegrown nationalists, who are way more berserk.

I dunno Kay, calling someone a “social misprint” is pretty nasty.

And many of your posts come off as obnoxious and hateful even without using explicitly derogatory terms.

A suggestion: try dealing with facts and evidence (realizing that’s a strenuous task for antivaxers) instead of pearl-clutching over tone.

Yes, we should all try to avoid using gendered slurs.
But, frankly, since Kay’s been banging on about how women should be denied bodily autonomy, it’s hard to get too worked up over has being has.

Kay, you are of course a regular blood donor, and signed up for bone marrow, kidney and partial-liver donation, right? Putting your body where your mouth is, right?

@ Kay West

You are either one of the dummest ever posting on this website or just plain dishonest. Above I posted a recent paper, based on data from three different Indian sources, not from two years ago; but from June 2021.

Joel A. Harrison, PhD, MPHsays:
December 5, 2021 at 10:43 am

As for why numbers so low, various explanations; but doesn’t matter. If they are extremely low, then they are extremely low. However, as I wrote above, Modi is demolishing India’s democracy, turning it into a right-wing autocracy, etc. And I can’t find anything that says if India had posted much higher numbers they would have received more international aid, especially given the overwhelmed health care and economic systems because of COVID.

People who continuously insult reasonable, SB commenters and attempt to mislead readers about medical matters ( minimising Covid’s seriousness, maligning vaccines, public health measures, medical experts, pharmaceutical companies) shouldn’t get all hissy because someone calls them names. They aggravate and enrage SBM supporters passive aggressively and then cry, “Foul!” Some anti-vax proselytisers explicitly target young mothers to frighten them away from vaccines and then wonder why regulars get upset. Isn’t potentially encouraging illness by scaring people about vaccines or masks and other mandates rather destructive as well as impolite? They’re telling adults how to live without the benefit of consensus science and calling most experts frauds, criminals and shills without evidence. Not exactly good manners either.

@F68.10 “What I care about is that your spiritual claims do not disregard “measurable” evidence when they come in conflict with your “spiritual” beliefs. Happened many times over. Darwin’s theory of species is a case in point with serious repercussions.”

You don’t know what MY spiritual beliefs are!!!! Are you actually claiming that everyone who has any kind of spiritual beliefs all believe the same thing?? That I can’t believe species evolved because I am not an atheist/materialist??

How irrational self-proclaimed “rationalists” can be.

So are you not the person going by Indie Rebel who said, on this very page, “You probably encountered doctors who had the good sense to realize the evolution-by-blind-chance-and-selection theory is wrong.” or what?

Because people have the power to remember your words from post to post. I realize this is inconvenient to the form of argument you’re trying to engage in, but you will have to deal with it.

@ Indie Rebel

“You don’t know what MY spiritual beliefs are!!!!”

Of course I do !!!!

Your not an a-theist. You’re therefore an a-a-theist.

And I’m a logician. So I do know what a double negation is.

Moroever, you did claim to have a buddhist outlook and a “belief” in – ah… – Intelligent Universe.

And double negation is sooooooo buddhist ! Kawaii !! cf. Catuṣkoṭi.

Gotcha.

“Are you actually claiming that everyone who has any kind of spiritual beliefs all believe the same thing??”

Nope. Given that an atheist may well be “Spiritual”, there’s no reason that would be the same “spirituality” as an a-a-theist like you.

“That I can’t believe species evolved because I am not an atheist/materialist??”

Nope. Far from it.

I’m just saying that the issue of evolution by natural selection is a “measurable” or “instrumentalisable” fact Science proved, and that any decent Spiriruality must take it into account if it is serious about Knowledge and Truth.

Some Spiritualities are serious about Knowledge and Truth.

Some Spiritualities are not. And shouldn’t be granted the way overly respectful title of Spirituality.

I’m simply explaining why no decent Spirituality may divorce itself from Science. Which is the point at stake in all our discussions from the start.

“How irrational self-proclaimed “rationalists” can be.”

Try again. I am Truth Incarnate.

Gotcha.

I was going to hold off on the tetralemma, but it had to be done at some point. I suppose there might be some fun in drafting new kong-ans, though.

“Why did Jinyoung leave B1A4?”

@ Narad

“I was going to hold off on the tetralemma, but it had to be done at some point.”

I must say I tend to get more and more annoyed at people claiming Spirituality and making no effort to engage in meaningful discussions on the precise topic they boast of. And then claim that its pro-science foes are guilty of irrational hubris. This is getting really, really, really tiresome.

You don’t know what MY spiritual beliefs are!!!!

Something tells me that the ol’ rope trick is not going to play in Peoria.

Then again… You ever been to Poughkeepsie?

@thsgrn “So are you not the person going by Indie Rebel who said, on this very page, “You probably encountered doctors who had the good sense to realize the evolution-by-blind-chance-and-selection theory is wrong.” or what?”

You can’t see any difference between evolution and evolution-by-blind-chance-and-selection? Really? No difference?

It is not evolution by blind chance, it is evolution by natural selection. Darwin did not write a book called origin of species by blind chance, Everybody would have laughed.
Perhaps you refer to intelligent design ? It is not evolution at all, it is theological concept.
Human design is not all intelligent. Compare blood clotting and space shuttle.
Space shuttle had five computers. First three would vote, and if they all had different result, two others would step in.
In case of blood clotting, we have a single point (actually many points) of failure. Not a way to design a critical system.

Nope, no difference. After all, selection, the key ingredient, is right there in the sneer-word version.

I mean, yes, one of them is written with sneer words, clearly a mockery, but … they’re the same thing. Evolution consists of random chance plus selection’s ratchet. All of the complications, all of the details – and, of course, there are many – are imposed atop the sheer random noise that are mutations and blind chance.

Denying that is, depending on the level at which one denies it, either pure Creationism, the ol’ “microevolution exists but macroevolution doesn’t” creationism, or the famously untestable “God exists and created everything by processes that look exactly like unthinking naturalistic ones”.

So, go ahead. If I’m missing something, feel free to actually explain in depth what I’m missing. Or just continue sneering that your made-up definitions mean things to you and not to me, that’s allowed but not so interesting.

So, go ahead. If I’m missing something, feel free to actually explain in depth what I’m missing.

I think there’s one missing piece: Evolution somehow has to have a construal that serves Polly’s being special. I don’t believe for a moment that the jabbering about systems and complexity theory [while leaving out (1) a definition of complexity and (2) thermodynamics] is just some sort of amuse-bouche that has escaped the kitchen, turned feral, and grown fat in the sewers.

One of the obnoxious parts is that there are much simpler, coherent ways of doing this. The idea that the perceived world is the unconscious mind, though, comes with some nagging responsibilities, as well as what I would take to be a disappointment for her–enlightenment is not a “promotion” in some cosmic hierarchy. It’s about subtraction

@ Indie Rebel

First, I agree that a healthy lifestyle is worthwhile. In the 1950s the average American consumed around 40 lbs of added sugar, nowadays, around 140 lbs. And it tracks with increases in obesity, diabetes, etc. And our government subsidizes corn, so high fructose corn syrup dirt cheap. Some fed to animals; but, for meat eaters, Omega 3s lower when fed partially corn than allowed free range, thus less healthy. If one adds sugar, salt, and removes fiber, food has a forever shelf life, tastes great and almost worthless. When I was in school back in late 1950s and especially 1960s with President Kennedy’s Physical Fitness, we had one hour of gym EVERY DAY. Included calisthenics, then some sport, then finishing off with a run. Nowadays many schools don’t have or reduced hours. Add fast foods and sitting in front of computer hours on end and . . .

However, even with best diet and exercise, no guarantee. In addition, kids that would have died years ago are now kept alive, e.g., neonatal intensive care units. And many, especially those with very low birthweight, have comorbidities; but their lives are still valuable, in themselves, and many do make valuable contributions. However, I suggest you read Samuel H. Preston and Michael R. Haines (1991). Fatal Years: Child Mortality in Late Nineteenth-Century America. Princeton University Press. Includes how many died before 5 & how many with various disabilities. Then do a search, numerous papers exist, that document slow changes. So, yep, if died before 5 and did have a disability, actual life-expectancy about same as today for the rest.

As for meditation and spirituality, can help; e.g., stress reduction which improves bodily functions.

However, medical interventions, including vaccines, responsible for percentage of improvement in life-expectancy; but, obviously, as we get older, even under the best of circumstances, health will deteriorate.

Your overemphasis on spirituality and hostility to science is absurd. If not for, for instance, smallpox vaccine, and you were infected, or polio, or e-coli 0157 H7, etc in food, then healthiest life-style and spirituality may NOT do you much good.

And by the way, I am 75, NEVER smoked, basically NEVER drank alcohol, NEVER, not even once, used any recreational drug except caffeine, started being vegetarian late teens, full-fledged by 30, then vegan (take appropriate supplements, e.g. B12, D3, and iron, because blood donor), limit sugar intake, and during my life lots of long-distance walking, almost always use stairs, jogging, biking, swimming, moderate weight-lifting, and years ago AIKIDO (poor reflexes, hand-eye coordination but was fun and great group of people). Before lockdown walked dog mile twice daily and went to YMCA where alternated between swimming 1500 yards freestyle, moderate speed good form, and moderate weight-lifting followed by half hour on stationary bike. Since lockdown purchased stationary bike, 30 minutes almost every day, level 6 out of 8, three days week lite wt lifting, and continue to walk my dog. Also was in Moderna Covid vaccine clinical trials and recently got both quadrivalent high-dose flu shot and Covid booster.

Yet, at 75, I have moderate health problems that my life-style, diet and exercise, could NOT prevent, though after 70th birthday had CT scan of coronary arteries, assumed 20% or so atherosclerosis. Zero. So, life-style and lucky genes did the