If homeopaths called themselves placebo therapists, nobody would have a problem with them.
This is not a flippant observation, nor one that is openly contemptuous despite the fact that homeopaths go out of their way to invite contempt. Placebos have been seen to show actual therapeutic benefit in some cases in controlled experimental environments and have approximately the same success rate as homeopathy. It’s all there in the 1000’s of independent research papers that the closed minded, communist fascist BigPharma controlled scientific community is apparently suppressing.
There is also another major benefit that could be realised if water quacks called themselves placebo therapists – they would be perceived as being honest. The honesty would be beyond dispute and it is a universally admired trait that money simply can’t buy. Unlike homeopathy “degrees” which have the same academic prerequisites as getting a boob job and for the right price can be purchased anywhere.
It’s quite the little industry too. If you are going to build a career in parting fools and money, you have to get hands on expertise in being the fool who money is parted from. If we use the shadowy owner of the crank propaganda tour de force Extraordinary Medicine we can get a rough idea of the costs involved in becoming a fully qualified exploiter of the stupid. From her biography page –
Tracy Poizner graduated from the British Institute of Homeopathy in 2002 with a Practitioner Level Diploma after 5 years of study including courses in Anatomy and Physiology, Disease Pathology, and advanced topics in homeopathic practice.
We can ignore the introductory course, which at a paltry $250 is like the free heroin sample your stereotypical teevee predatory drug dealer offers to your neighbourhood school kids. We’ll move onto the courses proper which I am guessing Tracy took over her 5 year academic tour at BIH-USA, course numbers 102 to 107 –
- General Diploma of Homeopathy – $2,850.00
- Homeopathy in Practice – $1,975.00
- Postgraduate in Homeopathy – $2,990.00
- Basic Homeopathic Pharmacy – $1,150.00
- Diploma in Homeopathic Pharmacy – $2,850.00
- Grand Total – $11,815
There were probably more. I have to confess though, the very idea of Dental Homeopathy (at only $2,850) stretches the already tenuous reality we’re already wallowing in. Nevertheless, it wouldn’t be on offer if there was a short supply of students. I have to pick my jaw up off the ground though when I consider that top shelf Cisco Certified Network Associate training is around $8,000 (a gravy train for life doing stuff that actually matters).
It’s phenomenal how much you can get away with charging for snake oil nowadays, and it really is a testament to the depth of the decadent corruption that plagues what is alleged to be the “enlightened” western world. We really do need a good famine to recalibrate our basics. If you look at the histories of the great failed empires, all were marked by periods leading to their collapse where the stupid found undeserved wealth they didn’t know what to do with, and opportunist con artists and charlatans were ready to feed on their credulous superstitions. A digression, but it is only one facet of the bread and circuses zeitgeist we live in.
Still, looking at the course blurbs, there’s some 850 hours all told in curriculum time – and you have to wonder what it’s actually filled with. BIH labels it as “Homeopathic Education” and claim to both “train” and “teach”, but I would have a problem with calling it “learning”. You can train or teach a parrot to mimic speech. Learning implies more than that – it involves dynamically modifying your knowledge base as you apprehend new data, correlate its relationships with other data and generate new ways of understanding it and what’s around it.
Exactly how do you do that with homeopathy? Everything is based on word of mouth and unsupported assumption, there is no quantifiable measurement (well, there is actually, but it’s dismissed as “BigPharma conspiracy”) or observable experimental procedure, all the “knowledge” contained in the selective data sets used to create an apopheniac mish-mash of random, unrelated crap1 that’s labelled “tradition”, lots and lots of Latin words to give it that air of intellectual authority, and tables, tables and more tables.
In other words, it’s rote learning of slabs of data that have no logical structure or formal relationship. In this respect, homeopathy “school” has more in common with Pakistani madrassas than any genuine learning institution. In madrassas students are locked in huts with dirt floors mindlessly memorising the qur’an and hadiths whilst blocking out any external haraam knowledge. Homeopaths do pretty much the same, only they hang out at macrobiotic cafes in gentrified urban centres.
This is more than just a superficial comparison. Not only are all the homeopaths I have ever met amongst the most ignorant people I’ve known, but the ignorance is deliberate – there is no interest in other fields, no curiosity, no respect for empiricism and what can only be described as contempt and fear of any knowledge that may conflict with their chosen path. Haraam. These are superstitious villagers that would rather explain the noises beyond the light of the campfire as demons than pursue any kind of rational investigation. Indeed, sites like Extraordinary Medicine are little more than an angry lynch mob armed with pitchforks and torches wanting to purge their village of all the intellectuals dabbling in all that science hokum that makes them look stupid.
“Dumber than dog shit” is the unfortunate, though rather accurate, term that always springs to mind, as it has just now as I stumbled across a couple of old items in my archives. The first is from some pea-brain, with an unhealthy fascination for official looking documents beyond her comprehension (providing they seemed to reinforce her ideology), who on being backed into a corner about her vaccination hysteria in an “Ahah! Gotcha!” moment slapped down a Materials Safety Data Sheet2 for potassium chloride as “I win, you lose” evidence of poisonous additives in vaccines. As an example of raw scientific illiteracy this can’t be beaten. How does any kid get through science in high school without knowing what potassium chloride is? Aside from being used as intravenous saline since the age of modern medicine began, it is also what you can buy at any health food shop as a sodium-free salt substitute. Unfortunately, this is par-for-the-course scientific incoherence with the alt.med brigades.
But the jewel in the crown is a chat exchange with another genius that was worthy of preservation in a demotivator –
Seriously, this clown, a practicing homeopath in southern California, the Mecca of alt.med derangement, was claiming penicillin as a natural, non-pharmaceutical therapeutic agent. Well, I suppose in the most pedantic sense it is, much in the way that ricin is natural. Sure, there are historical accounts of using mouldy bread as wound dressings which would on occassion work, but as often as not they would also lead to secondary, unrelated and less pleasant infections. And unless homeopathy now also encompasses bacteriological strain isolation, controlled artificial fermentation and solvent extraction, I think it is most likely this genius too was talking out his ass. This kind of ignorance in a western society is not accidental – it has to be deliberately cultivated. These are the fruits of the homeopath madrassas.
Atheists are premature in celebrating the marked decline in numbers of the priest classes. Though the numbers can be quantified, even from church sources, the decline in numbers is more than compensated by the new “priests” of the New Age (who are more correctly Dark Age atavists that want to hurl us back to pre-technological times). I see no difference between believers that seek healing at Benny Hinn Ministries and those that place their faith in water priests. None whatsoever. Penicillin boy above even claims to be an atheist, a testament to the Age of Incoherence that has overtaken that movement. The sheer intellectual vacuity required to dismiss religion as unsubstantiated nonsense whilst peddling blind faith in homeopathic quackery at the same time beggars belief. How does your head not explode?
Just as islamist madrassas churn out detached ideological maniacs that fill the ranks of the Taliban and seek martyrdom as human bombs, they are pretty much the same as the homeopathic madrassas. The latter churn out ideologues that can equal the derangement, albeit it manifests more as narcissistic sociopathy. Though they claim vehemently to the contrary, actual patient welfare runs a distant second to the promotion of the faith. Any doubts or thoughts that this is an exaggeration can quickly be dispelled by looking up the homeopaths that claim to cure cancer –
How soulless and dehumanised does a person have to become to use people with terminal diseases for personal glory? I can’t even begin to place myself in their minds. These are conscious intellects broken by the madrassa masquerading as “learning” convincing themselves of greater goods.
If, as some western societies have, we want to march down this route of legitimising quacks, then at the very least we need to implement a system for disciplining patient malpractice. Any of the cranks that are serious about their fraud-craft should not have any objection to this. After all, treatment that is “proven” and “works” should have no fear of legal redress right?
This is one issue that the cranks are deathly silent about. If they don’t talk about it, with a bit of luck it will never happen right? A very rare display of reasoning.
1 – Granted, it’s semi-random if you look at the roots in Hahnemann’s plucked-out-of-thin air “Law of Similars”. The Wikipedia summary is as polite as it can be – “Hahnemann’s law of similars is an “ipse dixit” “axiom“, in other words an unproven assertion made by Hahnemann, and not a true law of nature.”
2 – An important fact omitted from MSDSs is that they are documents designed from a catastrophist perspective, eg, a forklift drops a pallet of the chemical while unloading a truck. As such, they contain any and all “worst case” information, so the common and everyday becomes a toxic nightmare. You can see this for yourself by simply looking up table sugar (sucrose) or nail polish remover (acetone). Idiots like the one in question here are poster children for industry lobbyists that want to push for repeal of accurate product labeling laws – the argument is the common person cannot be trusted with this information because they cause panic. Unfortunately, as this idiot shows, they have a valid point.