Something that is known to get my blood boiling and boiling very quickly is unverified, unsubstantiated claims for ‘treatments’ that promise to give ‘quick pain relief’ such as homeopathic remedies – or colour therapies – or magnetic underlays – or the therapeutic application of hands to ‘treat energies’ – or… well you get my drift.
Someone else who feels the same way, but does it much more eloquently than I can hope to is Ben Goldacre, medical doctor, author, broadcaster – and someone who can communicate scientific information in an incredibly satisfying way.
Go to his website Bad Science and read on – but not if you too are convinced that infinitessimal droplets of something diluted in gargantuan quantities of plain old water can ‘heal’ you…
On a more serious note, he gives some excellent commentary on unsubstantiated science, particularly health-related claims, and has been the recipient of some really vociferous and even ugly threats because he dares to make public many of the limitations of so-called ‘alternative’ therapies.
As Prof Denis Dutton has said ‘Would you fly in an airplane based on alternative physics?’ – No way sez me!! I want to travel in an airplane that has been designed on tried and tested facts in this world, not the next! In the same way I’m not going to have my body used as an experiment to see whether ‘alternative’ medicine will work, I want to know that the therapies I try have some sound science to back up their use. Visit Prof Dutton’s websites for some lively and articulate debate – Arts and Letters Daily, and his philosphy site
So, two sites that are really thoughtful, challenging – and humourous! T-riffic, I think!