Book Recommendation (especially for Luminon): Bad Science

MichaelMcF
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Book Recommendation (especially for Luminon): Bad Science

Just a book I've been reading recently that's very good.  Not only does it explore and expose the flaws of "alternative medicine" but it also explains why science is so misunderstood by the populace (thank you newspapers) and even takes time to point out the actual evils of pharmaceuticals companies, rather than the ones dreamt up by people defending placebo level "cures".

 

It's called "Bad Science" and it's by Ben Goldacre, a British doctor and journalist.  He's been publishing a column called Bad Science for quite some time now.  His website is here http://www.badscience.net/

 

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 I will most likely pick

 I will most likely pick that up.  This is one of the things that gets my proverbial goat, violates it, and never calls the next day.  The whole water memory thing is so... I can actually feel my pulse rising just thinking about the number of people being ripped off.  Worst yet, the number of innocents that suffer when they take this shit in lieu of actual medicine... This rates right up there with organized religion in my book.   I remember a comic saying (paraphrasing) "If Alternative medicine passed scientific scrutiny they would call it Medicine"

"Don't seek these laws to understand. Only the mad can comprehend..." -- George Cosbuc


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Ktulu wrote: I will most

Ktulu wrote:

 I will most likely pick that up.  This is one of the things that gets my proverbial goat, violates it, and never calls the next day.  The whole water memory thing is so... I can actually feel my pulse rising just thinking about the number of people being ripped off.  Worst yet, the number of innocents that suffer when they take this shit in lieu of actual medicine... This rates right up there with organized religion in my book.   I remember a comic saying (paraphrasing) "If Alternative medicine passed scientific scrutiny they would call it Medicine"

If it had any active ingredients in it, it might be considered something other than 'hopeful'.

If you want to know what qualifies as 'Homeopathy', here's the straight goods on the origins of it, and what the qualifications of Homeopathy are:

 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BWE1tH93G9U

 

 

Homeopaths are complete scam artists.

None of them will sue you for libel or slander, because they cannot defend Homeopathy in court.

So feel free to tell everyone, and write it anywhere you can.

 

Homeopathy is fraud.

 

I keep asking myself " Are they just playin' stupid, or are they just plain stupid?..."

"To explain the unknown by the known is a logical procedure; to explain the known by the unknown is a form of theological lunacy" : David Brooks

" Only on the subject of God can smart people still imagine that they reap the fruits of human intelligence even as they plow them under." : Sam Harris


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Here is a UK discussion with

Here is a UK discussion with the head of a society of Homeopaths, on an investigation that found 10 out of 10 of it's group that claimed they could treat malaria, Homeopathically.

You'd never suspect that she's the head of a society of fricken' complete imbeciles.

Listen to her 'lucid' defence of homeopathy...

 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s1UJ_qGZ24k&feature=related

 

I keep asking myself " Are they just playin' stupid, or are they just plain stupid?..."

"To explain the unknown by the known is a logical procedure; to explain the known by the unknown is a form of theological lunacy" : David Brooks

" Only on the subject of God can smart people still imagine that they reap the fruits of human intelligence even as they plow them under." : Sam Harris


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MichaelMcF wrote:Just a book

MichaelMcF wrote:

Just a book I've been reading recently that's very good.  Not only does it explore and expose the flaws of "alternative medicine" but it also explains why science is so misunderstood by the populace (thank you newspapers) and even takes time to point out the actual evils of pharmaceuticals companies, rather than the ones dreamt up by people defending placebo level "cures".

It's called "Bad Science" and it's by Ben Goldacre, a British doctor and journalist.  He's been publishing a column called Bad Science for quite some time now.  His website is here http://www.badscience.net/

All right. I threw around my nets and digging this one up wasn't easy, but I've got it now. You're lucky that I'm the kind of theist who reads books. In plural.

Well, the first dozen or two of pages really seem like Captain Obvious' Heroic Handbook, but the author says it should pass. The book is certainly interesting, but rather as a fun reading.
In my country there is not so much of pseudoscience, because it's not necessary. Local thieves steal openly in clear daylight, they don't need to make up any intricate systems. So even if I can recognize pseudoscience, it's not worth much, because people here don't bother with it. Either they bribe the right people and they don't need to answer any questions, or they rob people with financial mumbo jumbo, or they target an audience which has no critical thinking at all, so they don't even need to sound internally consistent. 

Beings who deserve worship don't demand it. Beings who demand worship don't deserve it.


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 Hey Luminon, Sorry,

 Hey Luminon,

 

Sorry, didn't mean to pick on you, but I genuinely thought you'd find it interesting to read.  Especially in regards to medicinal trials and the pharmaceutical industry Eye-wink

 

M

Forget Jesus, the stars died so that you could be here
- Lawrence Krauss


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MichaelMcF wrote: Hey

MichaelMcF wrote:

 Hey Luminon,

 

Sorry, didn't mean to pick on you, but I genuinely thought you'd find it interesting to read.  Especially in regards to medicinal trials and the pharmaceutical industry Eye-wink

M

Hey! Why do everyone think that I think they're picking on me? I love attention! Smiling I love attention and seek it as a psychological mirror, with desperation of someone who's allowed to look into mirror once per year and otherwise has no way to track and intelligently direct his personal growth. No wonder every time it's a shock. Perhaps a shock, but a much needed one and I appreciate it. Don't worry about me, I need intense experiences to stir any feelings within. Doesn't matter if anger or joy, anything is better than emptiness, silence, anonymity and lack of response from the society. Just like a bat needs to hear ultrasound reflections from objects to navigate, I need responses and opinions from people. Enough metaphors? 

Even if somewhere would appear a thread "Luminon's best pseudoscience quotes to the opportunity of his 3rd anniversary onboard", I'd soon get over the  shock and enjoy it. :P 

 

In the beginning of the book there already is one quote which I can entirely stand for:

More than this, perhaps we all have a rather Victorian fetish for reductionist explanations about the world. They just feel neat, somehow.

How I'd like to tell that to these fans of Occam's razor Texas Massacre. But I'd need a doctorate to get away with that Eye-wink

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 Where are you from Luminon?

 Where are you from Luminon?


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Ktulu wrote: Where are you

Ktulu wrote:

 Where are you from Luminon?

Czech Republic, the miraculous land which is not theocracy, but outspoken kleptocracy. It is nice to hear about exotic problems elsewhere - like theocracy, woo industry, teaching creationism at schools, and so on. 

Beings who deserve worship don't demand it. Beings who demand worship don't deserve it.


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Luminon wrote: Just like a

Luminon wrote:

 Just like a bat needs to hear ultrasound reflections from objects to navigate, I need responses and opinions from people.

I was thinking more along the lines of "Even a blind squirrel gets a nut, every once in a while..."

I keep asking myself " Are they just playin' stupid, or are they just plain stupid?..."

"To explain the unknown by the known is a logical procedure; to explain the known by the unknown is a form of theological lunacy" : David Brooks

" Only on the subject of God can smart people still imagine that they reap the fruits of human intelligence even as they plow them under." : Sam Harris


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Luminon wrote:Czech

Luminon wrote:

Czech Republic, the miraculous land which is not theocracy, but outspoken kleptocracy. It is nice to hear about exotic problems elsewhere - like theocracy, woo industry, teaching creationism at schools, and so on. 

I grew up in Romania during the 80's and early 90's.  I think I have a pretty good idea of what you are experiencing.  I also realize where your beliefs are coming from, that whole area is soaking in tradition and superstition.  I held more theistic beliefs at the time, based on the type of information I could find there.  I think it was the way that religion was dismissed out of hand, without reason or explanation, and no rationalistic or scientific movement to fill the vacuum.  

The whole meme gratified religion by not considering it, or exposing it rationally.  I'm not sure what it is like now, but I'm positive that religion and irrational thinking has surfaced tenfold.  It speaks volumes about how religion should be handled here.

"Don't seek these laws to understand. Only the mad can comprehend..." -- George Cosbuc


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Ktulu wrote:I grew up in

Ktulu wrote:

I grew up in Romania during the 80's and early 90's.  I think I have a pretty good idea of what you are experiencing.  I also realize where your beliefs are coming from, that whole area is soaking in tradition and superstition.  I held more theistic beliefs at the time, based on the type of information I could find there.  I think it was the way that religion was dismissed out of hand, without reason or explanation, and no rationalistic or scientific movement to fill the vacuum.  

The whole meme gratified religion by not considering it, or exposing it rationally.  I'm not sure what it is like now, but I'm positive that religion and irrational thinking has surfaced tenfold.  It speaks volumes about how religion should be handled here.

No, I think what you mean is different. Local folklore plays a small role, except of a few traditions done for the fun of it and subsequent getting drunk. Czech Republic is a modern state with one of the best education systems in the world. (so they told me) There's a plenty of religious people, but they have no representation in parliament (after KDU-CSL fell out recently) and basically they're glad that nowadays there is no totalitarian police to harass them. Religion is not just dismissed out of hand, people don't even talk about it much. Non-religious people know it's an outdated idea, religious people know that Jesus is their savior and creator of the world, so what is left there to talk about?

If there is any superstition, it's imported. During the communism, spiritual books were smuggled into the country and re-written and re-printed manually in home conditions. After the revolution there was and is a great boom of spirituality. This is entirely a recent cultural movement, which has nothing to do with scientific or religious communities. There is only one "rational" movement, which is founded and led by former communistic popular science representatives. People don't trust them, they were repeatedly caught openly lying. Their main interest is lobbying in political and media councils, just like in the times of communism. As for their cultural activities, there's the good old western philosophic semantics and similar purposeless wordplays. 

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Luminon

Luminon wrote:

 Non-religious people know it's an outdated idea, religious people know that Jesus is their savior and creator of the world, so what is left there to talk about?

Ummm, how stupid religious beliefs are?

Or was that a rhetorical question?

Luminon wrote:
If there is any superstition, it's imported.

It's not natural, it's indoctrinated.

We're familiar with how it spreads.

I keep asking myself " Are they just playin' stupid, or are they just plain stupid?..."

"To explain the unknown by the known is a logical procedure; to explain the known by the unknown is a form of theological lunacy" : David Brooks

" Only on the subject of God can smart people still imagine that they reap the fruits of human intelligence even as they plow them under." : Sam Harris


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redneF wrote:Luminon

redneF wrote:

Luminon wrote:

 Non-religious people know it's an outdated idea, religious people know that Jesus is their savior and creator of the world, so what is left there to talk about?

Ummm, how stupid religious beliefs are?

Or was that a rhetorical question? 

Yeah. The religious beliefs are seen as a highly private harmless idiocy. That's because religious people keep to themselves. Well, but now that I think about it, lately I keep seeing these creationist lecture bus ads and posters. I should take a look on such a lecture, how many people are there and how they like it.
 

redneF wrote:
 
Luminon wrote:
If there is any superstition, it's imported.

It's not natural, it's indoctrinated.

We're familiar with how it spreads.

No, you aren't, not in this case. 

I don't say it's natural, but imported. Have you ever heard, that forbidden fruit tastes best? What if something would be so rare, even forbidden in your country for decades and suddenly the restrictions drop? People here are hungry for spirituality, for eastern authors, for meditations and so on. They take everything, with various quality. You should see how quickly tearooms had spread all across the country and gained popularity with young and middle-aged generation. You should see the halls with spiritual lectures full of people: parents, not children. Children here do not attend such events, maybe one in a few hundreds. I know I was always the youngest one there. 

Beings who deserve worship don't demand it. Beings who demand worship don't deserve it.