Scepticon

Just the Biased Facts

Commenting

I appreciate all comments that are made on this blog, even if they are arguing against my point of view. With that in mind I have decided not to moderate the comments as they are submitted, I have even set it so that you do not have to be a wordpress user to make a comment. However, abusive and intentionally inflammatory comments will not be tolerated and I reserve the right to remove comments that do not adhere to this. Hopefully that will never be necessary, so have at it.

20 thoughts on “Commenting

  1. I have to laugh at your commentary regarding health and health care. Perhaps you are not aware of a book published in January – DEATH BY MEDICINE. Five MDs and PhDs, using only peer reviewed literation documented that the leading cause of death in the United States is being a patient of conventional medical care.

    By a wide margin.

    So, before you try to defend convention which reflects economic bias far more than it reflects scientific validation – be clear on your intention.

    Most of our health care delivery system is inadequately trained on nutritional and biophysics oriented therapies. They have, as the analogy goes, one tool in their toolbox – pharmaceutical intervention.

    We tolerate that for only one reason – the distortion of free market enterprise that would otherwise look to allocate capital to the most efficient and effective uses.

    Those who defend conventional medicine and conventional health care are the ones blinded – usually by their own economic interests.

    That is why family practitioners (average income under $200k US) versus specialists (average income $350k US) tend to get integrative medicine more.

    If you prefer to give voice to ignorance – you are entitled to do so.

    Let your readers be clear as to what you champion.

  2. Thank you for your comment,
    for the moment I have just one question. Does the book cover the total number of patients of conventional medicine and the proportion that doesn’t die?
    Without this information it is impossible to determine the risk vs benefit that medicine is all about.

  3. And the same applies at my blogs.
    carneades.aimoo.com
    carneades thales strato @atheist bloggers
    thales. blogger.com
    strato of ga. wordpress
    ignosticmorgan’s blog ditto
    and others.
    I’d appreciate someone who might want to be a sort of expert in science and/or philosophy of science or religion.
    Thanks.

  4. I find it amusing when people go and on about how they think that natural medicine and alternative is “unscientific”. Currently the gold standard in research for determining whether or not a therapy is effective is the double-blind controlled study. However, isn’t funny that almost no surgical procedure has been researched using the double-blind controlled study and yet thousands of surgeries are performed everyday and it very well accepted by the public and the medical establishment. This is truly a double standard. Surgical procedures are no more scientifically proven than acupuncture and chiropractic care. In fact there are many controlled studies of acupuncture, chiropractic and nutrition that don’t make it into the major media. So people think that just because you see some great new medical treatment on Good Morning America that is the only form of health care. When in reality there is as much good research on “alternative” as there in on traditional medicine. It is big mis-perception that medicine is more scientific.

  5. A mutual acquaintance of ours, Cherie, linked me to your blog, and I must say it is fucking hilarious and awesome. Bravo Sir, +1 to you.

  6. love your blog however on a design note the white text on gray background is incredibly hard to read and is giving me a headache.

    1. Curious, I find it rather easy. But if you have problems you could read posts from an rss reader. I quite like this theme but I’ll have a look to see if there are any new ones I could tolerate changing to.

    2. I agree. I don’t usually read blogs in this format because it is so annoying. Scepticon, would you consider reversing to black on white background? I want to read what you have to say. I really do.

      1. odd, I haven’t changed anything, it was black on white. WordPress must have discontinued that theme. I have changed it but the are multiple ways to view blogs, rss feeds, bookmarking apps and sites like Instapaper, sending it to your kindle, even copy/paste into the viewer of your choice. I almost never read blogs on their website. The chosen format for display never bothers me. 🙂

  7. New Age Jewellery???
    Greetings! It’s been quite some time since I last wrote… it’s been busy. Life can get so crazy!
    It’s very early Sunday morning (midnight-ish) and I was trying to sleep but alas, my snoring but wonderful husband was keeping me awake. And I thought if I couldn’t sleep anyway I’d write and share something I’ve been thinking about.
    The other day my sister asked me to do some research on something she had been thinking about buying. A Baltic amber teething necklace. I had never heard of this, since my children are long out of the teething business, but my curiosity was piqued. I want to share with you what I found. It sure raised the hair on my neck.

    Baltic Amber Teething Necklaces

    “Teething can be a frustrating time for both you and your baby/toddler, but it doesn’t have to be. You can help your child through the teething stage, in a non invasive and drug free way with an amber teething necklace or bracelet.
    Baltic Amber is fossil resin, which is appreciated for its color, clarity and beauty. Although not mineralized, it is generally classified as a gemstone.
    Amber is a resin that has been fossilized from prehistoric pine trees that date back to approximately 50 million years ago. Amber has been used for centuries as a natural remedy to relieve pain in both young children and adults. It has been shown to provide pain relief and remedy the complications that occur during teething. These include pain, lack of appetite, upset stomach, excessive drooling, fever, ear aches and cold. Amber is also a powerful antioxidant, helps to compensate for low energy in the body and in the brain, thus boosting awareness, energy, concentration and reflexes and reduces stress.
    So how do they work? When worn against the skin, the warmth of the skin releases healing oils within the resin, which then get absorbed into the bloodstream. It is believed that these oils contain Succinic acid, which occurs naturally in our body and in plants. For centuries, many Europeans have used amber as an antibiotic to combat infections and anything from stomach aches to arthritic pain. The anti-inflammatory and therapeutic properties of amber have also been greatly recognized by allopathic medicine and some countries such as Switzerland, Austria and Germany have amber teething necklaces available in the local pharmacies.
    Many mothers would prefer not to give their babies over the counter drugs during teething and these necklaces provide 24 hour pain relief and relief from the associated symptoms from teething, in a non invasive and side effect free way.”

    The above are the words of an ad I found for the necklaces. Sounds really good, doesn’t it? Maybe you should get one. But before you go rushing to the nearest store- read on…

    HEALING POWERS OF BALTIC AMBERAmber is a powerful chakra cleanser and healer. At a physical level, is imbues the body with vitality and has the power to draw disease out of the body. By absorbing pain and negative energy, amber allows the body to rebalance and heal itself. Amber alleviates stress. Taken from: http://www.amber-teething-necklaces.com/healing_properties_of_baltic_amber.html
    New age beliefs suggest it transmutes negative into positive energy, and promotes positive thinking and attitude. It also activates the solar plexus and root chakra. Amber revitalizes mind, body and soul and helps to relieve depression. It supports physical healing and detoxification, and is used for disorders of the adrenals, liver and spleen.
    Taken from: (http://babyteethingnecklaces.com/what-is-amber/)
    The solar plexus is a nerve plexus in the abdomen that is situated behind the stomach and in front of the aorta and the crura of the diaphragm and contains several ganglia distributing nerve fibers to the viscera. What is the root Chakra? The Base or Root Chakra located at the very bottom of the spine, the Root Chakra governs issues around physical self-preservation. These issues include survival, security and safety, as well as primal erotic and procreational urges.This chakra is the grounding force that allows us to connect to the earth energies and empower our being. Every other chakra is downstream of it and only receives the energy that the root chakra can pass through to it. The path to health and mystical power goes right through the gender organs.To understand your root chakra, you must come to a place of peace with your sexual energy. Throughout the ancient world in historical and mythological stories, the root chakra has been associated with dragons and snakes. Dragons is a symbol for the kundalini fire energy.
    Taken from: http://www.algonet.se/~anki-p/Rootchakra.html

    From Wikipedia: “The concept of chakra features in tantric and yogic traditions of Hinduism and Buddhism. Chakras are believed to be centers of the body from which a person can collect energy. They are connected to major organs or glands that govern other body parts. Its name derives from the Sanskrit word for “wheel” or “turning.”

    Amber is said to treat the throat, stomach, spleen, kidneys, bladder, liver, and gallbladder, alleviate joint problems, and strengthen the mucus membranes. As an elixir and for wound healing, it is an excellent natural antibiotic. Amber provides decisiveness. It strengthens your memory and intellect and helps with emotional calming and centering. It is an excellent grounding crystal, and transmutes negative energy to positive. Amber radiates a warm and bright energy. It aids the Abdomen, Bladder, Blood, Eyes, Kidneys, Stomach, Tissue Revitalization, Throat, Liver, Joint Problems. Wearing crystal jewelry gives you the energy of the stone all day long. Amber draws disease out of afflicted areas and neutralize negative energy allowing the body to heal itself.
    Gemstones absorb and store light. Light, combined with the unique properties of each stone, create a specific vibrational frequency for the stone. These gemstone frequencies are attuned to specific Chakras. By placing a gem on or near the intended Chakra, it enhances and stabilizes the energies in that area. Often people carry healing gems in pockets, purses, or wear them as jewelry. (taken from : http://www.squidoo.com/chakragems

    Enough said.

    This jewellery is readily available in our home town. Are the gems in themselves wrong? No, I don’t beleive so. God has created them as He has created all things. Here is where it gets complicated. This teething jewellery reminds me very much of another kind of New Age jewellery… Reiki jewellry.

    Rieki jewellry could be in the form of necklaces, pendants, bracelets or earrings. It usually contains ancient Reiki symbols, which are infused with healing energy, to promote balance in mind, body and soul.

    The jewellery must be charged with Reiki before healing.

    (taken from the following website) http://www.iloveindia.com/reiki/reiki-jewelry.html

    Charged??? Anyone have a red flag yet? There is no question that that refers to the transfer of demonic powers to the jewellery and then to the person wearing it. I have not yet found solid evidence that Baltic amber is ‘charged’ but there’s no doubt about it: Amber teething jewellery is directly connected to New Age practices.

    I believe jewellery created with these purposes in mind makes it wrong or at the very least questionable. As Christians, we should flee from anything that is connected to the New Age Movement. It is dangerous and foolish to dabble in the occult, and think you won’t be affected by it.

    3 John 1:11 says: “Beloved, do not imitate what is evil, but what is good. He who does good is of God, but he who does evil has not seen God.”

    In this day and age, we need to be wise in all of the choices we make, from day to day. May this information have been helpful to you.

  8. I had a treatment with FSM and now have severe pain in both knees and one ankle where treatment was given. I have searched around the net for negative side effects and haven’t found any reports. The professional who applied it denies ever having a patient with side effects that don’t go away after a day. She thinks it must be some other cause. She thinks it must be a food allergy causing it! I would like to hear of anyone else who has experienced severe joint pain after treatment.

    1. I would be surprised if FSM is the cause of your pain, I’m no fan of the claims made for the practice but I’m unaware of any potential harm stemming directly from the treatment. I can’t rule it out however, it’d possible the practitioner made some sort of mistake which resulted in the pain. I would doubt the food allergy story also.

  9. Various types of electric stimulation therapy seem to be tied to the system articulated in Chinese accupuncture, which itself rests on several thousand years of trial and error testing.
    Not the “rigor” of modern science but thousands of years of trial and error.
    I suppose the same may be true for something as silly as astrology, but experience persuaded me.
    First, about 20 yrs ago, I had such tightness in my thighs that expert massage could not get the muscles to relax.
    my massage guy sent me to the person he saw when he was in knots, a 70 to 80 yr old Korean American who was an MD specialized in pathology. As he neared retirement, he decided to study accupuncture and went to Korea then to China to study. He was a curious man, always experimenting.
    in any case, he relieved my leg tightness and pain in two sessions of about 30 minutes. totally gone. but I felt CHI. and I felt it very strongly flowing. As an atheistic/agnostic Jew, I was skeptical but there it was, flowing through me. It is a long story, but I have never lost my access to this flow.
    I believe I first experienced it when I was just a child when my Rabbi blessed the congregation at the end of services with his hands raised toward us. I recalled the sense of peace I felt flowing over me when he did this.
    I am convinced that he had powerful access to CHI, and sent it out to his rather large congregation. I have no idea if he knew what he was doing.
    This is the same energy system that is accessed by FSM and other systems. they are all based on the same thing, or at least so I am persuaded by experience.
    Back to my Korean MD accupuncturist. We had many long talks and when i asked him whether in dissecting bodies he had ever seen evidence of accupuncure points or meridians, he smiled and said absolutely nothing visible to microscope.
    Maybe it is a very tiny level ?+??
    but it is real and powerful.
    Thesis. when we are conceived, 2 cells become 4 become 8 become 16, how do the cells communicate?
    how do they “know” when to start differentiating into liver and kidney and such.
    I have no grasp of the science here but something happens that lets the parts of body communicate before there are nerve cells to do it. I posit that this is the basis of the energy system that underlies all of these things.
    Wish I could do the science.
    Rich litvin, a lawyer not a scientist!

  10. sorry but I skipped one point that led me to this blog. I was in severe pain for months worst in both thighs, front back all over but elsewhere. I had been working too hard under stress as I reached old age of early 70’s, so I brought it on myself. but I could barely get out of bed, barely do the stairs, would have to sit down in pain and out of breath walking in grocery store!
    I had just a year earlier been in pretty good shape, able to work out a pretty intense hour at gym.
    I tried all the doctors, fine doctors, various specialties, at least a dozen tests and about 1% relief
    then I went to massage person who also does electric stimulation and uses some accupuncture points. She is eclectic to say the least. After 1st treatment, bad pain for one day, then relief better than in many months. Three treatments now.
    and last night I walked at brisk pace for 30 minutes, with more ease than I had felt in about 6 months, then came home and worked out another 30 at home.
    Just anecdotal, but this individualized experimenting in healing should count for something.
    Now get some money into scientific tests.

    Rich

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