Cancer Clinical trials Complementary and alternative medicine

Why we fight for patients

Never let it be said that Orac can’t match Mark Crislip in shameless promotion. The world might indeed need more Mark Crislip™, but I like to think that it needs a bit more of his friends, too. So, in that spirit, here are the videos, recently released by the James Randi Educational Foundation, of Bob Blaskiewicz, myself, and some key SBM players that you’ve come to know and love. The first video is a talk by my best “friend” in the world at The Amazing Meeting in July about Stanislaw Burzynski, MD, PhD. It’s entitled Why We Fight (Part I): Stanislaw Burzynski Versus Science-Based Medicine. The second video is Bob Blaskiewicz, of Skeptical Humanities and The Other Burzynski Patient Group, It’s entitled, appropriately enough, Why We Fight (Part II): It’s All About the Patients. The third video is of the panel that followed to discuss Medical Cranks and Quacks. Enjoy!

Don’t forget to pay attention to Bob Blaskiewicz’s plea at the end of his talk to contact him if you’re interested in becoming active. At TAM, he had a sign-up sheet that he discussed at around 21:06 in the video. Online, just mosey on over to The Other Burzynski Patient Group and contact Bob Blaskiewicz. We will very likely be asking you to help very soon.

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]

19 replies on “Why we fight for patients”

Wait, you mean you’re David Gorski? OMG, now all your enemies will know your Sooper Seekirit™ Identity!

You could be any of them, even that crafty Mark Crislip himself. Oh, I guess I’ll never know which of the Justice League of Science Based Medicine you are . . .

Awww man….I was hoping Orac was Bruce Wayne. My universe is shattered. Or is it?!? *suspenseful music*

No, no, no. Orac is Captain Amazing. That whole debacle with Casanova Frankenstein’s Psycho-frakulator was just a ruse.

@ Todd,

How DARE you disagree with my non-science-based assumption that Orac is Bruce Wayne based purely on the fact that I’ve never seen them both in the same room! I have half a mind to leave, start my own conspiracy group, get an MPH so I look legit, and reveal all my former allies’ secrets!

After watching the videos, I let them sink in for a few hours:

I couldn’t agree more about ridiculing alties: I can’t fathom how people consider pseudoscience- i.e. nonsense- to be *cool* or fashionable- has being taking advantage of by lowlifes recently become an enviable position?
I doubt it.

I think that education about how woo-meisters prey on the unsuspecting is in order:
each has a carefully constructed persona – they misrepresent themselves as being simple, caring, humanitarian, spiritual, down-to-earth folk- they’re *just* like you- only brilliant obviously- and totally UNLIKE greedy, overpaid, morally compromised SB physicians. They constantly wage war on the “elites”, the wealthy and corporations: fighting for the ‘little person’- fighting for you.

The internet provides photos of various woo-meisters’ simple living arrangements – like Dr B’s shown above- these are easy to find ( AJW, Mercola, Null’s estates, Adams’ in Ecuador) . So are sales figures

They present their spiel as education rather than as ad copy. Remember that followers are inundated repeatedly with their gurus’ meticulously orchestrated programmed learning campaign-
Simultaneously, they try to wean followers off of mainstream media and substitute their own ( miserably deficient) facsimile product- alt media.

I am especially fond of pointing out that alties like to pretend that they are ‘ahead of the curve’- the wave of the future, the harbingers of the New Age- and have made ostentatious predictions about their eventual triumph over mediocrity ( i.e. us) which NEVER pan out. Many of these are preserved intact on the internet. Many of their claims and methods are similarly, quite old hat.

Woo needs conspiracy in order to explain why it is not accepted as standard care- being that it is so advanced and efficacious- if you attack the scaffolding which props up the woo- the woo will fall.

Woo-meisters flatter their marks- they are smarter than the average person who accepts the status quo; they recognise true genius; they are too savvy to be fooled by press agentry and propaganda ….

Oh, IF ONLY that were true!

Wait, I thought Orac was Dennis Moore, riding ‘cross the land to capture all the alt-med loonies…

*listening to whispering in my ear*

Oh, it was lupins? Never mind…

@Denice Walter (reply 12)

Very well said, and sadly, I think you hit the nail right on the head.

Sirhcton @ 15: No no, that’s not ORAC, that’s my 9th grade science project!
Really though, I thought everyone knew that ORAC was in fact Dr Steven Novella. . .

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