Antivaccine nonsense Autism Medicine Quackery

The “just another study” gambit

I wrote about this classic crank gambit a bit about a week and a half ago, emphasizing that no amount of studies will convince a crank.

Now, MarkH at takes on the same issue in more detail so that I don’t have to bother with David Kirby’s latest spew. Thanks, MarkH! The point is that, for people who’ve already made up their mind to take a position that already contradicts what large amounts of available evidence says, no amount of other studies is ever enough. The “just another study” gambit should be recognized for what it is: a delaying tactic designed to buy time and distract people from the already existing scientific evidence against the crank position. It’s a shifting of the goalposts.

By Orac

Orac is the nom de blog of a humble surgeon/scientist who has an ego just big enough to delude himself that someone, somewhere might actually give a rodent's posterior about his copious verbal meanderings, but just barely small enough to admit to himself that few probably will. That surgeon is otherwise known as David Gorski.

That this particular surgeon has chosen his nom de blog based on a rather cranky and arrogant computer shaped like a clear box of blinking lights that he originally encountered when he became a fan of a 35 year old British SF television show whose special effects were renowned for their BBC/Doctor Who-style low budget look, but whose stories nonetheless resulted in some of the best, most innovative science fiction ever televised, should tell you nearly all that you need to know about Orac. (That, and the length of the preceding sentence.)

DISCLAIMER:: The various written meanderings here are the opinions of Orac and Orac alone, written on his own time. They should never be construed as representing the opinions of any other person or entity, especially Orac's cancer center, department of surgery, medical school, or university. Also note that Orac is nonpartisan; he is more than willing to criticize the statements of anyone, regardless of of political leanings, if that anyone advocates pseudoscience or quackery. Finally, medical commentary is not to be construed in any way as medical advice.

To contact Orac: [email protected]

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