Tag Archives: pseudoscience

Lying liars lie

This meme is doing the rounds of the antivaccination sites and Facebook groups:

vaccine

Sad that they can not do basic fact checking. The flu vaccine was not used until the late 30’s. Lying liars lie.

‘Detoxes’ are a scam

Don’t be so stupid as to fall for the detox scams and diets.

After being around the traps for a while, you learn a few things…

One thing I have learnt is when you see something being promoted by the nutter, Dr Eric Mercola, you know its nonsense and pseudoscience. He promotes snake oil and quackery. he misquotes and misinterprets research; he lies about research to suit his agenda. Others do that, but he has to be the worst.

His latest pile of sh*t is this one in the Huff post on fluoridation. He leads off with a study that shows how fluoride affects IQ of kids. What is fails to say is that it was mega does of fluoride that affect IQ, not the miniscule amounts that are in our drinking water. Many people in the comments section point that out. Notice how the fan boys are so blind to what they are being told.

How Science Deniers Threaten Our Future

realitycheck
I just finished reading Donald Prothero’s new book? Reality Check: How Science Deniers Threaten Our Future.

Fantastic read. It struck a chord with me and a number of posts I have made. This should be compulsory reading, but the problem is that those who really need to read it either won;t read it or if they do, they just won’t get it that the book was about them.

Check it out:
Amazon.com
Amazon.ca
Amazon.uk
Fishpond.au

Home truths about quackery

Climate Change Deniers

1. Climate change is happening
2. Its poses great risk for society
3. The scientific evidence is clear
4. The climate change deniers are focusing on trivial and unimportant miniscule problems with a tiny bit of that scientific research.

Grounding? WTF?

I just found out about a thing called grounding or earthing. It occurs when we are barefoot in contact with the earths surface and the electrical exchange between the earth and body is supposed to have some health benefits. The main promoter of this concept is a company with products to sell, which on its own should be enough to set off alarm bells. There does appear to be a lot of research done on grounding, but as explained here, there does appear to be a problem with all that research ranging from the lack of a control group to a lack of blinding of those doing the measurements to the research being done by the company that sells the product. No research to date, that stacks up to critical appraisal shows that grounding works. This is pure snake oil.

Everyone needs to read this book

Believing Bullshit: How Not to Get Sucked into an Intellectual Black Hole

This is one of the better books that I have read in a while. The book by Stephen Law is part of the fight back against crap and pseudoscience.

This is the publishers blurb:

Wacky and ridiculous belief systems abound. Members of the Heaven’s Gate suicide cult believed they were taking a ride to heaven on board a UFO. Muslim suicide bombers expect to be greeted after death by 72 heavenly virgins. And many fundamentalist Christians insist the entire universe is just 6,000 years old.

Of course it’s not only cults and religions that promote bizarre beliefs. Significant numbers of people believe that aliens built the pyramids, that the Holocaust never happened, and that the World Trade Center was brought down by the US government.

How do such ridiculous views succeed in entrenching themselves in the minds of sane, intelligent, college-educated people and turn them into the willing slaves of claptrap? How, in particular, do the true believers manage to convince themselves that they are the rational, reasonable ones and that everyone else is deluded?

Believing Bullshit identifies eight key mechanisms that can transform a set of ideas into a psychological flytrap. Philosopher Stephen Law suggests that, like the black holes of outer space, from which nothing, not even light, can escape, our contemporary cultural landscape contains numerous intellectual black-holes—belief systems constructed in such a way that unwary passers-by can similarly find themselves drawn in. While such self-sealing bubbles of belief will most easily trap the gullible or poorly educated, even the most intelligent and educated of us are potentially vulnerable. Some of the world’s greatest thinkers have fallen in, never to escape.

Law’s witty, insightful critique will help immunize readers against the wiles of cultists, religious and political zealots, conspiracy theorists, promoters of flaky alternative medicines, and various other nutcases by clearly setting out the tricks of the trade by which such insidious belief systems are created and maintained.

The book clearly shows all the tactic that users of quackery, woo and pseudoscience use to convince the gullible public to believe them. More importantly, the book give you the tools to recognize them so you don’t fall into that black hole!

Multiple Chemical Sensitivity Myth

Multiple chemical sensitivity appears to me to be a made up disease. This is supposed to be a disease in which the sufferer is ‘allergic’ or sensitive to all the modern chemical used today. From what I have read on MCS, no credible research supports it (bogus research does support it). The only people that seem to support it as a real condition are those who have a book to sell on it or are selling what appear to be bogus treatments for it. I guess there is good money and selling woo. I could not find any research on it worth it in the scientific literature. Until something credible comes, then this is snake oil.