I did a quick search to find out more information about the show - I entered "Marketplace Homeopathy" into the google search and the first 5 or 6 links (for me) were for Homeopaths and those sympathetic to
The Homeopaths have really rallied the troops - they are calling on people to contact the CBC and demand that it not be aired, demanding that the reporters lose their jobs, claiming that it is all lies, etc. On the CBC Marketplace site for this episode (http://www.cbc.ca/marketplace/2011/cureorcon/), the vast majority of comments are from people who support
I have tried to comment on the Marketplace site but, as of a few minutes ago, the comments are still waiting for moderation.
Let your family and friends know to watch CBC Marketplace this Friday at 8:00PM - especially if they think that
Some links about Homeopathy:
The following updates may be considered rude, offensive and childish. And, if they are, I nailed it! Homeopathy is stupid.
It is often said that you fight fire with fire but, in response to the comments on this blog (and on Cure or Con), I'm going to fight stupid with stupid.
Homeopathy benefits patients, at best, by means of the placebo effect. You can argue it any way you wish but in a double-blind clinical trial with Homeopathy, placebo and a control, Homeopathy does no better than placebo. Period.
The first comment suggests that there are no new complaints against Homeopathy and, though incorrect, does not make Homeopathy work. It was stupid 200 years ago and it is stupid today. Medicine has progressed (in leaps and bounds) in the past 200 years and Homeopathy hasn't changed a bit (okay maybe it did become more of a religion like Chiropractic).
We know that patients (though they may not like to hear it) should be treated based on statistics - some will do better and some will do worse but treating the patient based on what they self-report as their problems fails the basic tests of science. Science requires data to not have been f#$ked with - a self-report is weak and easily manipulated. All that Homeopathy does, in claiming to make a specific treatment for the "whole person" is spend time with the patient - one of the key components for eliciting the placebo response.
Homeopathy doesn't work if you don't believe in it. Period. Antibiotics? They work whether or not you believe in them. Someone receiving a specially formulated treatment (for them) from a Homeopath but told that it is a placebo - do not see the same benefits as people who receive a placebo but are told it is a specific Homeopathic nostrum formulated specifically for them. This screams placebo. That's all it is, that is all it can ever be. An expensive and dangerous one at that. (People skip real medical treatments/diagnoses because of the bullshit that is peddled by these snakeoil sales people.)
"It can't be placebo because it works on babies and animals" is f#$king stupid. Anyone making that claim should not be allowed to breed. The placebo response does not solely rely on the patient expecting an outcome - that is not what we've ever claimed and it is not what actually happens. Expectations can and do affect the outcomes but they are not necessary. The placebo response can be triggered by simply increased attention (the Homeopath gives a patient a shoulder to "cry" on and listens to their problems - the benefit derived from that is a placebo) - babies recognize additional attention. More cuddling, the parent taking care to keep the baby comfortable, feeding the baby comfort foods, staying home from work to be with the baby (instead of putting them into day care), etc. Conditioned responses are seen in animals and babies all the time. Stop using that lame response to a claim that something is placebo. It is old, it is tired and it is stupid (just like Homeopathy).
Other comments include:
Comment: Homeopathy is natural and doesn't contain all the chemicals/toxins that "Big Pharma" puts into medicine.
Me: Stupid. Everything is made of chemicals. The toxin is in the dose (water is toxic and so are most vitamins). Natural does not mean safe. Shit is natural - so is mercury, lead, anthrax, mushrooms, cocaine, asbestos, carbon monoxide, etc.
Comment: It works for me, you can't tell me this stuff doesn't work.
Me: It doesn't work and it didn't work for you. There is not a single binary outcome that is changed by Homeopathy. Consider the natural history of the disease, regression to the mean, etc. Take a cold medication and your cold goes away in 7 days. Don't take one and it is gone in a week. Amazing!
Me: Scratch anything that anyone says if they use the term "allopathic". They're sheep and they've been screwed by their shepherd (sounds like something that happens at churches).
Comment: As a result of Homeopathy my energy levels have increased.
Me: No, no. That's because of your Power Balance bracelet. Don't confuse them. I bet you'd have more energy if you didn't have to waste your time going to the store to buy the pure stupid.
Comment: Homeopathy is a science that has been around 200 years.
Me: Homeopathy is not a science. To accept Homeopathy, we'd have to throw out physics, biology, chemistry and theology (just kidding - but can we just throw out the last one anyway?). You know what else has been around for 200 years? Slavery. Oppression of women. Mumps. Measles. Rubella. Pertussis. Anything that hasn't been revised or updated in 200 years is out of date or obsolete. When Samuel Hahahahman (something like that?) invented pure stupid out of whole cloth, people often didn't live to reproductive age, the average live span was less than 50 years. Science, however, has increased that to well over 75 years. If we weren't wasting billions of dollars on sCAMs like Homeopathy, imagine where we'd be!
Comment: Unbalanced reporting. Biased reporting. (Re: Cure or Con) (Actual quote: "I would ask you to ensure the people you are interviewing for this segment are from both sides of this debate - it is unreasonable to assume that interviewing someone who potentially has a vested interest in a subject will give you an unbiased and fair interview.")
Me: Stupid doesn't deserve a platform to spew stupid. In a debate, the truth does not necessarily sit somewhere in the middle of the two viewpoints. One side can be completely wrong (Homeopathy in this case). Who doesn't have a vested interest in something that would speak about it? Homeopaths have a vested interest, people seeking the truth have a vested interest. People who use Homeopathy (have invested money in stupid) have a vested interest - whether they think it worked for them or not. What people are trying to argue is "big pharma is paying scientists to lie about Homeopathy so they can't be trusted" but "trust a Homeopath, why would they lie?".
Comment: "Big pharma"
Me: Big placebo. And by that, I mean, if following the money makes one suspicious, I suggest that we can't trust big placebo (I think this is a horrible argument either way.). They're in it for the money as well. Oh, and much of the market for sCAMs (Homeopathy, "natural shit", etc.) are dominated by big business (including the same pharmaceutical companies you're arguing against).
Comment: (Actual quote) "Wow. A lot of support for Homeopathy in the comments. I didn't realise that many Canadians were total ret@rds. There is no scientific merit to Homeopathy and no evidence that it works. It's water ffs. Homeopaths are dangerous as they encourage people to abandon real medicine (especially preventative, specious reasoning and all that) for diseases such as malaria and cancer. They're a dangerous plague and if this support is representative of the Canadian population then I'm afraid I'm going to have to scratch the entire country of my Atlas of Relevant Non-Idiot Countries (U.S. and a number of others gone already). I was hoping I could keep SOME of North America but I guess that's just not to be... :("
Me: I can't believe that got through the moderators.
Comment: (Actual quote) "numerous clinical trials and double blind tests have been conducted in
Europe that were set up to disprove the efficacy of homeopathic remedies by the allopathic community, only to prove that they DO work. "
Me: F#%k me sideways! Then aren't the Europeans stupid? They get positive studies (you suggest) and, from that, decide that it's time to stop funding Homeopathy in Britain? And Germany?
Comment: (Actual quote) "Question: Why did the CBC not consult with leading Homeopathic doctors for conclusive evidence on the efficacy of Homeopathy? It seems your research is lacking thoroughness."
Me: Two words: Coutier's Reply. You want a few more? You don't need to know what they claim about Homeopathy and how it is supposed to work if it simply does not work (and it doesn't).
Comment: (Actual quote) "My family and I have been using homeopathic remedies for the last 9 years, with great success. I used homeopathic teething tablets when my daughters were babies; the results are nearly instantaneous for stopping crying, reducing swelling and red cheeks."
Me: Jesus Christ on Crutches! Does death cause a baby to stop crying, have reduced swelling and stop their cheeks from being red?