Taking Osteopathy in Hand

An advert for a local osteopath appeared in my local free paper.

You know what’s coming next…

I’ve just sent the following complaint to the Advertising Standards Authority:

The advert makes claims about the following medical conditions:

Aches and pains
Lower back pain
Sciatica and slipped disc
Frozen shoulder & RSI
Arthritis & joint stiffness
Headaches & migraines
Whiplash & neck pain
Occupational injuries.

I challenge whether:

1. osteopathy treatment is effective for any of these conditions;
2. the ad breaches the Code because it could discourage readers from seeking treatment of serious medical conditions, such as whiplash, by medically qualified practitioners.

It doesn’t need any more than that.

I’ll keep you updated and I’ll be blogging on the General Osteopathic Council‘s Code of Practice sometime soon.

Update: 26 July 2009

Enter the name of the clinic into Google and this blog post is already the first hit. Second hit is the clinic’s own website, Head 2 Toe UK.

128 thoughts on “Taking Osteopathy in Hand”

  1. Your challenge 1. Osteopaths provide a package of care well accepted in the medical community for these problems. If they can't use a combination of manipulation, exercise advice, soft tissue work and referral for prescribed NSAIDS/for imaging/to a specialist if appropriate to treat the above then there is no treatment left for these problems and spots injuries for not just osteopaths but Sports Doctors, Physiotherapists and Chiropractors.

    If you had a neck sprain form a whiplash injury which was not recovering quickly and you were referred for say physiotherapy I suppose you would not attend as they would provide, particularly if they had a post grad masters in spinal care/were a grade 8/extended scope physio exactly the same care.

    RE challenge 2
    To quote a post from Skeptikat "I'm not sure if you are being deliberately obtuse or just a bit stupid"?

    In case it's the latter please here's some help for you.

    All of the above are medical conditions and all could have "serious" causes. Whiplash describes the mechanism of a type of neck sprain/strain which in some cases can be "serious" too. In most cases it is a minor soft tissue injury which recovers on its own or is assisted by NSAIDS and physical therapy.

    Surely all we ask of an Osteopath, is that in their role as a primary health practitioner they can assess which ones are "serious" and to be referred for further assessment and which are appropriate for Osteopathic treatment. This treatment would normally again involve manipulation, soft tissue work, exercise instruction, referral to a GP/specialist for advise on medication eg NSAIDS.

  2. The problem with your jumping on the post Simon Singh/chiropractic bandwagon is that you betray your poorly thought out argument and show a distinct lack of knowledge base.

    If you're going to seriously challenge osteopathy's claims you need to demonstrate an awareness of the evidence base for and against osteopathic treatment of these conditions and what the evidence is that the more "medical" treatments can do any better. I'm fairly certain you have done absolutely no research into this matter whatsoever, but i might be wrong…..am i?
    If you're going to take some kind of scientific/rational high ground you have to be prepared to walk the walk, and from what i can see, all you're doing is mudslinging.

    What's your agenda and what's motivating you to attack osteopaths when you are coming from an evidently uninformed position and are accusing highly qualified primary health care professionals that they dont know what they're doing.

    If you'ld like some information about osteopathy please feel free to contact me:

    [email protected]

  3. oh and another thing, neither this blog OR the clinic come up anywhere near the top of the google list at all.

    making false claims huh?

  4. Hope you all feel better after getting all your petulant wee comments off your chests, guys. 🙂

    JB, way to cast aspersions. As even a cursory glance through this blog will reveal, it is not the norm for Zeno to ignore comments…at least those that are worth responding to. But sometimes other things take priority.

    Rick, calm down. Zeno has made one complaint about one osteopath to the ASA. That isn't taking "some kind of scientific/rational highground" nor is it "mudslinging". To complain to the ASA one needs only be suspicious of claims made in advertisements. Don't you worry your little brain about it; this complaint is as much a test of the ASA as anything else.

    That said, how can anyone with their reasoning faculties intact, be anything but suspicious of a therapy defined on the website of the British Institute of Osteopaths as stimluating the "preparation and distribution of fluids and free forces of the body" and promoting the "cooperation and harmony inside the body as a mechanism". That sounds like woo of the first order and yet we have someone claiming this therapy can treat whiplash and migraine. And people pay him to do this?

  5. Rick,
    Well said!!!
    Don't be suprised that ALan/Zeno has failed to reply to you. This seems to be the norm when someone argues/debates a point that he cannot justly criticise or win against. Looks like round 1 to you!!!

  6. Zeno seems to be happy with the fact that his blog post comes up on google. No doubt is because this will affect the Osteopath's business negatively and cause them distress whilst the Osteopath has no chance to defend themselves until the complaint is resolved, for all Zeno knows in their favour, but which may not be for some months. What a very unpleasant attitude to have to other humans.

  7. Couple of things.

    Interesting how people's responses online are invariably patronising when they disagree with someone else, saying things on here which they'd never have the courage to say face to face. Im absolutely fine with an open and honest debate Mr Skepticat but a bit less of the cheek Sir if you dont mind.

    Since when is taking "some kind of scientific/rational highground" and/or "mudslinging" dependent on the number of complaints made? The action is the same once as it would be repeated a thousand-fold, and he is clearly implying that osteopathy has no scientifically sound theoretical basis. He's making this grand implication without stating that he knows otherwise and, im fairly sure, without having done much if any of his own research into the subject. This isnt really good enough. If you are going to set up a blog with an agenda to "out quacks", if you devote time to running down a profession then one would have thought the least you'd do is some research.

    One of the things which you devout skeptics seem to fail to realise is that just because a subject hasnt been subject to RCTs, it doesnt mean it lacks evidence. The hierarchy of evidence means that some types of evidence are of greater scientific value than others.

    However if there hasnt been an RCT conducted then its perfectly accptable to use whatever evidence is available until its disproved by a methodologically superior trial.
    Theres plenty of evidence for osteopathy just a lack of high quality trials looking into it.

  8. Rick, it's 'Madam' actually and I wonder if you have any idea what a pompous prat you sound. Look at your three posts. If you don't like being patronised, don't troll someone's blog airing your ignorant assumptions about them.

    You seem to have misunderstood my post. Whether it's one complaint or one thousand complaints to the ASA, it is neither taking the highground nor mudslinging except in the perception of those being complained about and any allies they might have. The ASA is there to protect the public from false claims and anyone who suspects a claim about something important may be false has a moral obligation to challenge that claim by any legal means in order to protect the public. I trust you agree the public should be protected from false claims?

    Most skeptics are well aware of the heirarchy of evidence and I fail to see what bearing this has on this complaint. As long as the ASA are satisfied by whatever evidence is offered to support this complaint, then that will be the end of the matter, even if the evidence is of poor quality.

    As for your whining about zeno not being informed…how would you know? This is an assumption on your part, it's also a straw man and of no consequence.

  9. mmm lovely

    well, my assumptions about him were informed by his perhaps equally ignorant assumptions about osteopathy. Its slightly naive to think this complaint is purely an attempt to protect the public and not part of the witch hunt against, initially, chiropractors and now it seems osteopaths.

    Its absolutely of consequence whether or not zeno or youself talk from an informed position, because if you are you might be worth listening to and be able to contribute usefully to a discussion on the subject and if you arent then you're purely pointing and shouting.

    Of course feel free to continue your public saving service of reporting osteopaths to the ASA, im sure the public are falling over themselves in gratitude. Tis ironic that all this fuss comes at a time when i'm about to cancel the last of my advertising as its proven a total waste of money with the only effective way of growing a business being word of mouth.

    Good luck with your campaign.

  10. I find this subject very interesting. I suppose you always do when it affects you personally.

    I have tried chiropractors previously and I currently see an osteopath. None of this was before I had been to my doctor many times with lower back problems over the last 20 years.

    I also currently see an NHS phsyiotherapist. Interestingly he gave me the same three excercises to do as the NHS gave me 15 years ago! It may even be the same photocopied piece of paper! Is this a tried an tested technique that works or has treatment of lower back pain had no recent advances? I'll find out as the treatment continues.

    I find it interesting that the physiotherapist is concentrating on mobility in my lower spine whereas the osteopath is concentrating on stiffness in my leg muscles. They are both 'treating' the same problem and I think both methods may have some merit.

    My questions for those of you who know about these thing are: Are there any proper clinical trials of osteopathy? If not, why not? Are there clinical trials of physiotherapy? If not, why not? and If not, then where does that leave a patient like me?


  11. Hi,
    There are numerous small trials attempting to validate the efficacy of osteopathy and there is a reasonable amount of data out there to suggest positive results. The problem being that it is a very small profession about 3500 practitioners in the uk and there is very little funding for extensive research and large trials (no money in it).

    On the subject that kicked this debate off, since the 1992 osteopaths act and more recently the statutory register was introduced (2000 or 2002 i think) that osteopaths are incredibly tightly regulated and well medically/clinically well trained, regardless of what you think of the therapy and techniques used, all UK osteopaths have reached degree level (i.e a similar level to medical school) in a combination of anatomy,physiology,neurology,pathology to name a few, also they are extensively taught clinical methods so training wise would be probably as well placed as anyone when conducting physical assessments.

    On the subject of false claims in advertising i agree that it needs to be closely monitored, the above advert could be worded better.

    Lastly i would only take information about osteopathy from the General Osteopathic council or the British Osteopathic Association as all others do not officially reflect the profession and can write what they want (British Institute of Osteopathy)


  12. Maggie- you can get degrees in homeopathy- just because you can waste many years learning a subject has nothing to do with the validity of the subject itself. Chiropracters are regulated- but when challenged you can see what a mess teh FCC have got into.

    I don’t want to disparage osteopathy but there needs to be a lot more evidence before it can be advertised as a treatment- crying about lack of money doesn’t cut it. If you want to make claims you have an obligation to have the evidence to back it up- that is all zeno has asked the ASA to investigate.

  13. Sympall- I was surprised to find that you are correct and you can take a degree in Homeopathy, mind you i did a degree entitled literature,life and thought so there are dodgy degrees across the spectrum, i would suggest that Osteopathy, like Physiotherapy is not one of them.

    I think the crux of the problem is the funding, the body of evidence that exists does tend to show physical therapy as effective in treating certain conditions but much of this is dismissed as trial sizes are too small, which is fair enough in principle as everyone wants large properly run trials, but in practice this means only the large pharma companies and orthodox medicine gets to choose what becomes validated or tested, and i think this is possibly why such strong views are generated on both sides.
    With reference to this blog Zeno seems like he has a bit of an axe to grind with complementary medicine and not just bad science. I’d like him to write to the ASA challenging whether a certain kitchen towel does indeed have the power of an elephant.

  14. That’s a curious comment in your last para, magpie, if I may say so. Obviously zeno does have an axe to grind about altmed – as I do myself – and that’s why he complains about it. It’s interesting to me that the criticism most frequently levelled at those who take the trouble to complain about things they believe to be wrong is that they should be complaining about other things instead (or as well).

    There is only so much time available for this kind of activity and I’d respectfully suggest to anyone with a bugbear about anything that they do their own complaints about the things they don’t like and leave the rest of us to complain about what we don’t like.

    Btw, re your comment on my blog that I am ‘blinkered’ – I’m still waiting for you to start a discussion at ThinkHumanism so that you can show me where I’m going wrong. 🙂


  15. Magpie55

    The US National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine spent nearly one billion dollars on AltMed research and has come up with not one jot of evidence for a wide range of CAM nonsense.

    The US public spent 34 billion dollars of AltMed, so it is BIG business and more than capable of funding half decent research. The problem is Big Quacka is just not interested in doing proper research, because they know the results would seriously damage their profits.

    Read the excellent Quackometer for further details of this.

    If you think the claims made in the advert for kitchen towels were misleading, why don’t you complain to the ASA? It is very easy to do – just follow the instructions on the ASA website.

  16. Hello both Zeno and Skepticat, thank you both for your responses, i enjoy both your blogs and am interested in your standpoints regarding alt med.
    I agree with you both that kitchen towels are not really at issue here but i wanted to know whether it was the flouting of advertising guidelines or just chiropractors that got your goats.So why is alt med such a bugbear? (Skepticat does explain in her blog) but why Zeno? …
    Anyway Zeno i started reading your link to the excellent Quackometer and was initially a little put off by the inclusion of Yoga, surely this cannot be in the same quack bracket as homeopathy? This i think is partly the my problem with these debates that there is no distinction between alternative therapies (certainly not in this blog) So I feel that the $34 billion research may perhaps be a little inflated as seemingly everything is lumped in together regardless, though i take your point that it is big business, should be evidence based and yes big quacka corp may have a vested interest in not investigating their claims too closely.
    That said it’s the little guy you are attacking here and i am just curious to where the motivation for your efforts comes from?

    Skepticat you make a valid point, i accept that you should only be complaining/blogging about the things you believe wrong, i just hope for balance in the evidence presented for your cause.
    I still think you may be a little blinkered (though am less confident with fewer G&T’s in the bloodstream)I will try and start a discussion soon on ThinkHumanism and would value you input and yes it’s going to be about that NHS MMR vac. leaflet.
    (Was going to sign off with clever quote but too tired, perhaps next time) Magpie.

  17. Hello everyone,

    This a message to all educated people (no offense) in this, and other blogs.

    I believe that we are losing the battle with this bunch of time-wasters just by enabling them and posting comments in their REAL quackery websites. I have already fallen int to this trick by leaving a couples of comments in Zeno’s Blog website and eventually realized that I was playing their game, their rules.

    If I had as much time as Zeno has, I would probably make a blog myself but, never mind! Zeno, apologies if making blogs is your actual job; but what a job mate.

    I am a medical doctor and also a chiropractor and, despite being aware of the Simon Singh vs the BCA issue and his desperate seek for help, only recently I realized how many loser and unqualified people out there are using the net to gain popularity and happily make a fool of themselves.

    I bet that no one of these blog ‘quackers’ have anything to do with either chiropractic or osteopathy in first person but they saw an opportunity to prove something….. to themselves, after al it’s their job.

    Those people work on two basis:
    1) they insult the public by undermining their intellect; arrogantly pretending to offer help and clarification, when, as a matter of fact, they create more confusion and disruption within a functional health system,
    2) they know that they will get comments and responses only from specific readers (us), as it is very unlikely that a bank clerk or a busy architect really cares about searching a research paper that shows evidence for whiplash treatment (no offense to any jobs/professions; I could have used, as an example, housewives or scuba divers)

    Do not even waste time visiting these ‘quack’ websites; I personally do not believe that people who really want to help the public spend huge amount of time compiling massive blogs on the net. Furthermore, I reckon that, the only qualification they have (if any) is writing nonsense to upset the public. Does anyone really believe that ‘skepticat’ (or dog, or rabbit) really holds a scientific recognized (or unrecognized) degree? I don’t!

    I know for a fact that chiropractors, as well as osteopath, receive intense training (in some aspect even more intense than medical doctors) and have a profound knowledge of medical conditions and their treatment/management.

    So let’s waste time NO MORE. Let’s go back to real work. We got patients to help.


    Oops! this is another of Zeno’s blog! I am in real trouble now. I’m almost sure he will use my post to ‘help the public’ and compile another quack blog to discredit the General Medical Council.

  18. I find it ironic that the pro medic here think that their world is somehow cast in concrete as the absolute truth. Now your own researchers are telling us all that the so called ‘EBM’ bandwagon is fraudulent, if the drug pushers can publish what they like and ignore the true facts of how bullshit their dope is you haven’t got a leg to stand on.

    EBM is concocted bull, a contrived scam of the biggest order known to man, no wonder this site is so boring! Are you guys into shoot em up computer games?

    How about complaining to the ASA about Tamiflu?

    Leading researchers today call for access to all clinical trial data (published and unpublished) to allow drugs to be independently assessed by the scientific community. Tom Jefferson and colleagues from the Cochrane Group argue that the current system for assessing the safety and effectiveness of drugs, based on published trial data only, is “wholly inadequate” and “ethically dubious.”

    They propose a new approach that would allow in-depth scrutiny of the complete set of trial data for a new drug. Their call comes after they reviewed the evidence for the antiviral drug oseltamivir (Tamiflu), and were unable to find sufficient published data to support the conclusion that oseltamivir reduces complications in healthy adults.

    The Cochrane team’s concern deepened after finding reports of ten serious adverse events in patients enrolled in two key manufacturer-funded trials that were not reported in journal publications arising from those tr ials. They conclude: “It is time the media, the Cochrane Collaboration, and any reader interested in knowing what they are prescribing or are being prescribed increase the pressure on policy makers. If you swallow a medication, you need to know how it works – for real.”

  19. The standard that osteopathy and anything alternative is being judged against doesn’t exist. It’s a circular argument, you claim the high standard of medical chuff and training which is being shown to fall at many hurdles.

    You dismiss anything that can’t be bought or sold and hide behind myths like swine flu to claim some kind of central authority that has fake evidence to prop it up.

    Even the BMJ showed virtual disgust at the Tamiflu scam last year. If the world of septics was really about being sceptical of crap the balance would be automatic, but your rebranding of ‘common sense’ into ‘corporate sense’ stinks.

    Anagrams of ZENOBLOG – GLOB ZONE OR BOZO GLEN sort of sums it up really.
    What do you think about the FDA lobbying to ban people from growing their own vegetables because this ought to be done by ‘real food growers’? This feeds into the Codex Alimentarius where only ‘approved foods’ can be grown.

    As to the evidence for osteopathy, it speaks for itself. It got where it is with no corporate support, no slick adverts but because the public benefit from it, if they were killing people their insurance would be prohibitive and under common law alone they would all be in prison. Unlike doctors who seem to escape proper scrutiny, unless of course they dare to question fallacies like vaccination.

    If medicine didn’t have the finance that it generates by scaring the public shitless at every turn with fake health scares, to bribe politicians and media, most of it would have sunk. Advances in A and E aside, the rest of the NHS is disease management and this alone is an ASA issue, where is the healthcare?

    Back to evidence, your presented standard of evidence requirement is like a puff in the wind, you haven’t got a leg to stand on, do you really kid yourself that your mission is so important!

  20. Nancy

    The standard that osteopathy and anything alternative is being judged against doesn’t exist.

    Many AltMed practitioners advertise their wares, so the question here is whether the those adverts stand up to the ASA’s standard of evidence, not mime. The ASA don’t come and ask me what claims I think should or should not be allowed and they don’t ask me to evaluate the evidence and come to a conclusion.

    If the advertiser can’t provide evidence to the standard required by the rules of the ASA (which can be found here in case you’d like to read them) to back up a claim they are making in an advert covered by the ASA’s remit, then they are in breach of the ASA’s rules, not mine.

    And the ASA’s rules — whether you like them or not — are there for good reasons: to stop advertisers misleading the public. And, of course, there is Trading Standards and other regulators, both statutory and voluntary, who have their own rules that their members have to follow to make sure the general public are not misled, conned or harmed by misleading or dangerous claims.

    If you don’t like those laws, rules and standards, you are, of course, completely free to challenge them with the appropriate organisation.

    As for things like Tamiflu, I am well aware of what the evidence says. However, if you come across an advert for it that you think is making misleading claims, perhaps you’d like to report it to the ASA, the MHRA or TS? You can do that here, here or here.

  21. The ASA requires ‘robust clinical evidence’ such as that published in ‘respected peer review journals’. Perhaps Alan you could highlight where these journals are so that the opportunity to submit work for ‘proper review’ might be done.

    Many ‘orthodox’ medical systems advertise their wares by using the deaths of children to scare people into using unproven ‘medicines’, the media is also complicit in this deceit.

    There is no point validating a fraudulent and flawed audit process, you can’t polish a crap. It is a good job the public are more intelligent than your mates over in the septic tank, you are like something out of the Salem witch trials, but funny rather than scary, sort of Halloween meets Noddy.

    If the standard you seem to worship had some kind of kudos attached to it, you may have a point.

  22. Nancy

    As you should be well aware, it’s up to the advertiser to hold robust evidence for any claims they make. It’s the ASA’s rules that talk about peer reviewed journals — I am not privy to that information, so perhaps you should be asking them?

    Many ‘orthodox’ medical systems advertise their wares by using the deaths of children to scare people into using unproven ‘medicines’, the media is also complicit in this deceit.

    This is irrelevant to whether there is any robust evidence for AltMed claims, of course, but would you like to provide your best example of such an advert?

    It’s not that the ASA/TS/MHRA/or whoever have rules that have or need any ‘kudos’ as you put it; it’s that some of them are legally requirements. Or do you believe anyone should be allowed to make whatever claims they like, regardless of the consequences?

  23. Nancy, when you quote from another source, it is customary to credit it and, if possible, to provide a link.

    The last three paragraph’s of Nancy’s first post are an article that appears in the BMJ here:


    I’m sure nobody would take issue with anything said in the article and we all applaud the Cochrane Collaboration for their fantastic work in upholding the high standards demanded by the EBM movement. But what purpose does it serve here beyond illustrating Nancy’s poor reasoning? None.

    Nancy said,

    “If the drug pushers can publish what they like and ignore the true facts of how bullshit their dope is you haven’t got a leg to stand on.”

    Even if it were true that the drug pushers can publish what they like and ignore the true facts, how does it follow that we don’t have a leg to stand on? Does it somehow make the claims of this osteopath less false?

    Nancy said, “How about complaining to the ASA about Tamiflu?”

    Um….you seem to be a bit confused about what the ASA is. That being the case, I’m not sure Zeno’s last post won’t be a bit above your head. I’ll try to simplify.

    The letters ASA stand for Advertising Standards Authority. Advertising includes paying for adverts to appear in newspapers seen by thousands or even millions, as this osteopath did and, in a couple of months it will include advertisements on the web too. Unfortunately, it does not regulate the pronuoncements of politicians, the promotions that drug companies might make to retailers or health service providers, the quality of reports of clinical trials or the quality of the trials themselves. If you can grasp this much, you will begin to appreciate why your suggestion sounds ignorant.

    If you can find an advertisement for anything related to tamiflu that you think may contravene the Codes of Advertising Practice or, for that matter, Trading Standards or any other regulatory body, then let’s see it or at least hear about it.

    A couple more things:

    “You dismiss anything that can’t be bought or sold and hide behind myths like swine flu to claim some kind of central authority that has fake evidence to prop it up.”

    I’ve read all Zeno’s posts and don’t see any evidence here to support this accusation. Please say why you think he “dismisses anything that can’t be bought or sold”. If you are trying to imply that he is focussing his complaints on misleading claims being made to the public (i.e. items that ordinary members of the public are being lured into spending their money on) rather than doing something about the concerns you are highlighting, please say what exactly you think he – as a member of the public – should be doing instead. And please use your loaf and don’t come up with any more daft suggestions like ‘complain to the ASA about tamiflu’. Zeno has helpfully provided you with links that show you how to do what he is doing. Now it’s your turn to show us exactly how you think he should do whatever it is you think he should be doing.

    Until then, I’m afraid you’re the one without a leg to stand on.

    What’s with the anagrams, by the way? Are you 12 years old?

  24. Dear Septicat

    I am interested in why you didn’t choose the bible? The books you seem to quote as some kind of divine truth are no different.

    You underestimate the intelligence of the public, what’s with the stupid cat thing, are you still at school?

    I don’t think Zeno has the first idea what he is doing, evangelical smokescreens for some perverse self stimulation?

    The idea that there is some kind of moral standard in newspaper advertising is a joke, so you guys are protecting the public, who haven’t asked you to do so, from a group of self publicists who are up to their necks in gwana?

    Sorry pussy, but I can’t stop laughing, bring it on.

  25. Nancy

    What are you on about? Skepticat didn’t quote from books, but she did go to the bother of finding where you copied your quote from.

    And what’s this about the bible? Last time I checked, the ASA don’t adjudicate on whether something is biblically compliant.

    You still don’t seem to have grasped the very simple fact that it’s the ASA who protect the public, not us. You really should be diverting your anger (or, alternatively, any AltMed evidence you have) to them, but I suggest you’re a bit more coherent any less rude to them or they may give you short shrift.

    Please let us know how you get on with your complaints.

  26. When I want your opinion I will ask for it. Who the hell asked you guys to ‘protect the public, I see no qualifications, no proper training, just bigoted opinion.

    It’s like Mary Whitehouse all over again, Zono 0 you dork, the ASA are only protecting their jobs, this public protection racket has just been legalised and it’s a shame such an obviously intelligent boy has been hoodwinked, same with the girly cat septic.

    No I am not a medical doctor, if you knew your history pussy you would know that the word ‘quack’ is what orthodox doctors were originally called because their no 1 poison was mercurial derivatives.

    You don’t have an argument, you have a religious conviction, it’s like talking to the JW’s. Keep up the good work, not long left now.

  27. Nancy

    If you don’t want to know my opinion, don’t read my blog.

    And unless you stop your puerile abuse and come up with some decent, intelligent arguments, I’ll ban you from commenting.

  28. Hi Nancy

    It’s reassuring to see you’ve ignored my question of what exactly you think Zeno should be doing about things like the “tamiflu scam”. Here’s a few more things for you to pretend I haven’t said:

    If you try to lecture me on anything to do with language or history, you risk embarrassing yourself very badly. (Not that this has inhibited you so far – I suppose that’s the advantage of anonymity.)

    In fact, I am old enough not only to remember the word ‘quack’ being used colloquially to refer to any orthodox physician but to have done so myself. The word ‘quack’ nowadays, however, is used colloquially to describe practitioners of quackery which, in turn, is used to refer to scientifically implausible and/or unsupported therapies. Hope that clarifies.

    As for your question about who asked us to protect the public, here’s the thing you are missing: We are the public. By doing what we can to expose the lies, ignorance and lack of professionalism of those who line their pockets promoting pre-science cult therapies, we are trying to protect ourselves and our loved ones, some of whom have been ripped off or otherwise hurt because of such people.

    We don’t need qualifications or training to complain about misinformation to regulatory bodies. I must say I’m rather surprised at the illiberalism implicit in your question. It would appear that you think practitioners should be free to claim whatever they like and that nobody should have the temerity to complain unless they have some unspecified “qualifications” and “proper training”. Is that correct?

    I’m not actually aware of any qualifications in the discipline of submitting complaints about misleading advertising but, given Zeno’s extensive experience in it, you can rest assured that he is well equipped to provide “proper training” to anyone else who cares to have a go and plenty do. In fact, that is precisely why he was asked by a member of the public to set up the Nightingale Collaboration and why so many other members of the public are delighted and are offering their support.

    So you see, it’s all good. 🙂

  29. Yes Nancy

    It would seem that these ‘tank sites’ are populated with middle ages meddlers who hide behind the ‘save the poor’ ticket because they have nothing better to do.

    I would let them fester in their own hypocrisy, they offer nothing but suck chi from anyone who goes near them. Zeno is a ‘fall out hypothesis’ and the septic pussy is one of those abandoned bunny boilers looking to fight anything.

    How ever hard you try you can’t polish a turd, at least the ‘florence collaboration’ puts them all in the same room, keeps them out of harms way.

  30. Yes, ‘professor’, but are you aware of any ASA-standard evidence for various forms of quackery, or do you think quacks are above having to meet the standards mere mortals have to meet? Perhaps you think they should be above the law as well?

    I don’t know what you think, so please enlighten us.

  31. LMAO!

    I love it when quacks adopt sock puppets and have public conversations with themselves. It happens quite often when one of them gets pwned in an online exchange that they started themselves.

    Nancy, you need to do more than call yourself ‘professor’ to convince anyone who isn’t a half-wit that you are, indeed, a professor. You actually need to sound like a professor and not like yourself.

    You underestimate me. You should have heeded my warning.

  32. The idea that ‘doctor knows best’ is bullshit, either you work for these sons of or you are in their employ. No reply from the fanny cat then?

    In Donald Barlett and James Steele’s recent article in Vanity Fair entitled Deadly Medicine, they revealed that prescription drugs kill over 200,000 Americans. Before the drugs reached the Americans and the rest of the developed world, many of the pharmaceutical industry’s drug trials were carried out on slum dwellers who had no idea that they were part of an experiment. For some, this was the first medical attention that they had received in their lifetimes. With litigation unheard of and some signing the consent forms with an X or a thumbprint, these are the regions where the pharmaceutical industry bought the facility to silently bury their mistakes in paupers’ graves. The 14 dead babies in GlaxoSmithKline’s Synflorix vaccine trial being but one example. Pharmalot’s Ed Silverman publishes news of the list of countries where corruption as the abuse of those entrusted with power turn it to private gain. “The US also had the distinction of being cited as one of six nations whose corruption index deteriorated since 2009, along with the Czech Republic, Greece, Hungary, Italy, Madagascar and Niger,” he writes. The corruption of those invested with power who wallow in personal gain is worldwide ubiquitous.

  33. shitebuster said:

    …either you work for these sons of or you are in their employ.

    Oooh! Which do you think it is?

    As for the rest of your post (a copy of this), what is it about this that you think adds to the evidence for osteopathy, homeopathy, chiropractic or any other pseudo science?

  34. Nancy/professor/skeptitwat or whatever you like to call yourself, I refer you back to my first response to you.

    This blog is about the misleading claims made about so-called healthcare therapies to people like us i.e. ordinary members of the public, by people like you i.e. charlatans. It’s all very well whingeing about big pharma, iatrogenic deaths, etc. but I repeat the question I asked before, which you have so far ignored:

    What exactly do you expect us to do about these problems?

    Instead of just ranting, why not provide a link to a website where an orthodox physician is advertising an unsupported therapy to the UK general public for the purpose of financial gain in the way so many thousands of you evil money-grubbing quacks are doing?

    Alternatively, just keep posting abuse under different pseudonyms. I’ve often accused quacks of being morons who can’t argue their way out of a paper bag and I love it when such people take the time to prove me right.

    Kind regards

  35. Hi Pussy

    What about the call from the ‘save the children’ on national tv claiming that a simple vaccine to stop diarrhea could save millions of lives, that’s more bullshit than I could write.

    I suppose their lawyers told them to put ‘could’ in, weasle words exempla.

    I don’t expect you to do anything about anything, you always seem to shove your crap onto other people and expect them to act. The biggest ‘healthcare scam’ is the disease managment service that we are all paying for, EBM shows us it’s a scam but the money pours into the coffers.

    Can you name lists of mass murdering alternative therapists or is that just pussy gas?

  36. Vaccines already save millions of lives and there is nothing weasley about saying many more lives could be saved by the development of new vaccines to prevent severe diarrhea and pneumonia.

    How in the name of humanity can you oppose vaccines? You really are a despicable piece of filth. No wonder you’re anonymous.

    As for murdering alternative therapists. Try here: http://whatstheharm.net/

  37. So let’s get this right anecdoticat. That media line of ‘vaccines saves blah’ has no EBM to back it up as vaccines are exempt from the comparitive studies that demonstrated efficacy so that’s trollop. In fact the BBC just made the WHO scammers reveal documents that showed in comparitive vaccine studies which is ok to do on third world people in the name of medical science, had 41% mortality in the vaccined babies.

    So you have no ‘vested interest’ in the pharma industry or medical research or medical practitionership? You are only a member of the public who gets up every morning and has self styled themselves as an ‘expert’ against all that challenges the orthodoxy, you have some kind of save the planet adgenda.

    When the medics fuck up, which is continually happening, you go all blind and ranty about how without them ‘millions will die……parp damn busters theme kick in here’

    Check out the medical experiments done in the name of vaccines in Ireland, done on kids in homes, if they didn’t already have enough abuse that certainly kept the theme of ‘use abuse and drop’

    Vaccines are well medieval pussy, luckily the public you are trying to ‘protect’ are seeing through it without your patronising, matronly clap trap and avoiding it like the plague.

    Quoting yet another septic site at me isn’t science, look at your own peer review base and you will find all the answers there, that is if you can read

  38. Zeno, ‘the house of pills’ has its evidence base for efficacy in disrepute, ex editors of the BMJ and NEJM have both said you can’t believe anything you read in a peer reviewed medical journal due to funding conflicts, the medical industry has profit before care as its mission statement judging by the number of drug death scandals abound, so telling us that this is the standard the public needs to judge alternatives against, sounds like rhetorical bullshit.

    How can you accept that a ‘properly trained doctor’ is doing anything to help a patient with arthritis by prescribing painkillers, anti metabolites and TNFI drugs? How the hell has the RCT placebo banana method come to the conclusion that this is truthful science?

  39. Are you telling us that ‘properly trained doctors’ that are prescribing painkillers, anti metabolites and TNFI drugs to ‘treat’ arthritis are sane, scientific and truthful? The whole of the medical world you seem to judge everything else by is in disrepute, ex editors of BMJ NEJM have all gone on record as saying nothing published in a medical peer reviewed journal can be believed due to funding corruption issues.

    I see the fanny cat has pissed off.

  40. ban the posters that sus the bull said (or whatever):

    So now you can’t argue and you are suspending posts, that’s scientific

    Playing the game of banning the posts that show you up

    What on earth are you on about?

    As anyone can see, your comments have not been suspended or banned, but I would remind you of the rules and suggest that if you want to continue commenting here, you think carefully about what you say and how you say it.

  41. Now you have started a new thread so that the previous trashing of your ridiculous position is subtlety lost in the cyber ether. Can’t wait for your public presentation.

  42. So all the public has to do Alan is expose your weaknesses, which are too long to list here, and you magically shorten the thread to something more palatable to your mates over at the septic tank.

  43. Nope, you’re still talking nonsense.

    I have found two of your comments in amongst the 200-odd spam comments I got yesterday and I’ll publish them shortly. As anyone can see, I have not blocked you from commenting. However, persist in your behaviour and I will.

  44. ‘spam’ that’s interesting moderation

    Comments identified as spam automatically go into the spam bin and I get no notification of them. Some comments are automatically held for moderation and I have to decide whether to accept or reject them. Your comments were automatically sent to the spam bin along with the porn, etc. I had to find them and retrieve them manually.

    How does one find the previous 55 posts in this thread?

    If you mean comments, click on the ‘Older comments’ link.

    You don’t get many posters do you Alan?

    Not many civil, sensible ones recently, no.

  45. Are you telling us that ‘properly trained doctors’ that are prescribing painkillers, anti metabolites and TNFI drugs to ‘treat’ arthritis are sane, scientific and truthful? The whole of the medical world you seem to judge everything else by is in disrepute, ex editors of BMJ NEJM have all gone on record as saying nothing published in a medical peer reviewed journal can be believed due to funding corruption issues.

    So what evidence do you have that the ‘properly trained doctor’ is doing anything ethical, morally correct or truthful in the above scenario?

  46. So you avoid discussing anything that knocks holes in your castle. Explain how one minute a poster is not spam, the next minute they are?

    I await your comments on medical quackery Zeno/Alan, what is ethical, honest or truthful about prescribing painkillers, anti metabolites and then TNFI’s for arthritis. Assuming you can’t engage with this directly I will make an analogy.

    If I took my car to a mechanic with oil warning light on and he gave me earplugs would you be impressed, if he called it ‘benign Knockyitis’ would that make it scientific?

  47. Come on Alan, where’s your sense of adventure? More leaks about the ‘proper doctors’ show they are killing more people using public money than any homeopaths you can name. How is the ASA deciding what is and is not ‘quality peer reviewed’ research then? What exactly is the point you are trying to make? If you had no ‘interests’ you would be proportionate about your campaign.

    The Coalition Against Bayer pharmaceuticals (CBG) announces that Bayer and Baxter settled a multi-million dollar compensation suit with hemophiliacs in 22 countries who were victims, infected with HIV or hepatitis C having been infused with tainted blood plasma products in the 1980s. In 2003, The New York Times reported that a division of Bayer pharmaceutical knowingly continued to sell its AIDS infected blood product to countries in Asia and Latin America to get rid of inventory.

    The Bayer-Baxter settlement prohibits the victims and their lawyers from speaking about the arrangement. Philipp Mimkes from the Coalition (CBG) welcomes the settlement, but asks: “why is BAYER concealing the payments? Why are the media not able to report on this precedent? It is outrageous that the companies who knowingly infected thousands of haemophiliacs are blackmailing the victims not to talk about this important development!” An important aspe ct of this case–which the Times called “one of the worst drug-related medical disasters in history”–is the culpability of the FDA.

  48. Where is the ‘evidence’ that ‘proper regulation’ is either safe or in the interests of the public with regard to access to quality health care when the orthodox systems of training, regulation, research and practice are full of corruption?

  49. Explain how one minute a poster is not spam, the next minute they are?

    This is not the technical support department for WordPress — I suggest you contact them if you want more details about how their software works.

  50. Gee whizz you are so slow. Right that’s the easy one that doesn’t challenge your belief system too much.

    Now let’s have an answer from the great Zeno:

    Where is the ‘evidence’ that ‘proper regulation’ is either safe or in the interests of the public with regard to access to quality health care when the orthodox systems of training, regulation, research and practice are full of corruption?

    Making these even more basic:

    We now know that pharmaceutical research chooses not to publish negative results with regard to drug licensing and approval. This has been shown to be a big reason behind many of the ‘drug disasters’ that have in some cases like the anti arthritis drug Vioxx let to 160,000 attributed deaths worldwide. In a nut shell the company witheld data that showed it massively increased heart attack rates, one coronor said at autopsy the hearts of these victims look like shotgun wounds.

    Just to remind you, these drugs were approved and passed by all the orthodox regulators.

    So let’s have a positive discussion about the context of saftey and regulation Zeno, taking out a few nutters who promise cures is one thing, I don’t know anyone who has a problem with that.

    There are serious problems with what you seem to accept as ‘valid’ and ‘truthful’, the book ‘trick or treatment’ is a self referrential torrent of nonsense really and if it represents your position I don’t see how your campaign is more than a corporate distraction to the real fire going on in the orthodox system of healthcare.

    If all the alternatives were killing babies and more a) they wouldn’t be able to get insurance to work and b) common law is already enough to take them out.

    What is the purpose of your effort?

  51. I wonder if you can have even the slightest understanding of why I don’t feel particularly inclined to answer someone who has been so abusive and downright rude to me and others?

  52. Well there we are the Achilles heel of the septic tank reveals itself. Now we know where your coming from, not very deep, not very informed and rather Sun reader in intellect.

    Say hello to the pussy cat for us, one day you may just climb out of that little hole you have made for yourself and realise that no one is listening. As the world of vaccine support crumbles into chaos you can count yourself amoung the believers that kept this arcane practice alive.

    Smell the fear or is it something else, can’t wait for your public debut.

  53. “So let’s get this right anecdoticat…Quoting yet another septic site at me isn’t science.”

    Actually, anonymous one, I didn’t quote anything at you. In response to your request for information about murderous alternative therapists, I provided you with a link to a site that has many more links to many different sources of stories of people who have suffered and died at the hands of people like yourself. When an ‘anecdote’ is backed by a coroner’s report, it stops being an anecdote and becomes data. Take it or leave it. It’s between you and your conscience.

    I glanced at a couple of your numerous remaining posts but, given how all your posts thus far have indicated not only a closed mind but a total lack of ability to engage with serious arguments on a serious subject in a civil and intelligent manner, I can’t be arsed to read them properly. (There’s a moral in there somewhere, if only you had the brains to realise it.)

    In any event, I see from the contents list on this blog that there are about a hundred posts here. Not a single one of them is about vaccines, so I’ve no idea why you’ve even raised the topic. Then again, I suppose anti-vax loonies think they don’t need an excuse to have a rant, which is why they sound like loonies. Especially when their rants are peppered with infantile abuse and posted in rapid succession. (If I thought you’d take any notice, I’d suggest you go and have your nervous breakdown somewhere else – it’s most unbecoming but not unprecedented for a quack to go into meltdown round here, lol.)

    As far as I’m concerned, the subject of vaccines is closed. I researched the topic thoroughly, considered all the arguments and decided that my children would get all the jabs they were recommended to get and I’ve never had cause to regret that decision, especially in light of the re-emergence of infectious diseases, which should have and would have been eliminated were it not for people like you, but are instead returning to kill children.

    Blood on your hands, anonymous one. Shame on you.

  54. Ah the cat returns.

    So far none of you seem able to discuss the double standard in ASA requirements, perhaps it’s just too much to realise you are backing a huge religious movement called medical science. This is relevant to the whole blog, it is the core reason you are promoting as a reason to be here on this mission.

    Medical science, It has no theories, no hypothesis but plenty of dishonesty, flawed research to back up it’s position. This is the standard you are using to judge others!

    No wonder you don’t discuss vaccination, it has no evidence base, it has it’s own rules on limited trials and not publishing results. I bring it up as an example of the double standards you support, there are plenty more that you seem unable to discuss, ironically it’s like discussing the devil with a god believer really.

    Even the noble Zeno seems unable to discuss the corruption in peer reviewed medical journals, does that not interest you? I find it rather unbelievable that you are not of their world, does open evidence that the evidence you believe in is complete bullshit? For a women of science that doesn’t stack up, unless you are medical scientist that is, more concerned with PR than facts.

    I can’t wait till you guys do something public.

    So what do you think Catgirl about the BBC getting the WHO to reveal ‘confidential documents’ showing that vaccinated babies had a 41% higher mortality than non vaccinated? That is not my data, I am not pro or anti I am only interested in the data so I don’t know why you can’t discuss it, it’s a fact. Perhaps you can’t face the wrong decision you made? I genuinely feel sorry for you over that and have compassion for your dilemma.

    What books did you read to make the decision to vaccinate, I am really interested in how you came to this decision when so many people are not doing it, please share with us you insight. Can you tell us which diseases are coming back and where this is happening or is that another urban myth?

  55. For a group impersonating scientists you are quite remarkable in your approach.

    You have a point of view, shame it’s wrong, misinformed and fantasy, but I suppose that is the muse of the religious fraternity.

    You know, if you don’t want an alternative you don’t have to do it, the rest of us who are paying into the NHS disease management system don’t have a choice and that’s the real fraud.

    As for the cat I have no idea what her position is on anything, Missionary?

  56. @ ballesscatmuncher:

    I have tried to find reference to the WHO data you mentioned – rather than spending ages searching, would you be able to verify where you heard that? Something I would like to take a look at.


  57. Here’s one for the ASA and trading standards Zeno, how many people are being told that the swine flu jab can cause narcolepsy?

    The Chief Medical Officer of Finland’s National Public Health Institute has conceded that it may have been unnecessary to vaccinate children and young people against swine flu. Dr Terhi Kilpi told the Väli-Suomi newspaper group’s Sunday newspaper supplement that perhaps the vaccine should not have been given to 5-20 year-olds.

    Kilpi said that she would no longer recommend the vaccination for this age group. She added that if she had known of the potential consequences, she would have not inoculated 5-20 year-olds. “A year ago, the current understanding was that the swine flu was a danger specifically for the young. At that time there was not yet any reason to suspect serious side effects to the vaccine,” said Kilpi.

    The vaccine is now suspected to be linked to an increase in the number of cases of narcolepsy affecting children and young people in Finland, Sweden and Iceland. In Finland, 54 children have been diagnosed with narcolep sy. Even though it is under suspicion, the vaccine has been reintroduced in the UK.
    YLE, fi

  58. Hi SJG, yes it’s disgusting that the WHO can experiment on children, but I suppose you could say that ‘exposing vaccine protection myths’ may have been worth it.


    “Richard Phinney reports from the West African country of Guinea Bissau, where a team of Danish and African medical sleuths (under Dr Peter Aaby) have pieced together evidence that could change public health care forever. They have discovered that vaccines and vitamin supplements have unexpected effects – good and bad – on the immune systems of children…. Their health detective work (over 30 years documenting 100,000 people) has generated more than 600 scholarly articles in the world’s leading medical journals, and been responsible for the withdrawal of a potentially deadly measles vaccine by the World Health Organisation.

    But the WHO has not acted on the most explosive findings yet coming from Guinea Bissau. They show that the world’s most commonly used vaccines can weaken – a child’s immune system in the long term, and affect their ability to fight off disease.

    The results directly challenge the WHO’s global health advice, followed by most countries in the developing world, and could mean that thousands of young lives, in Africa and beyond, are needlessly at risk.”

    They found specific problems with the DTP and mixing with other vaccines…between 2months – 9 months there is an increase of 50% for all types of mortality. Furthermore, if girls receive a vitamin A supplement at birth and then have the DTP the mortality increases by 41%, so much for the ‘protective advice’ from properly trained doctors, but then most people don’t trust them anyway.

  59. ASAwhydon’tyou?

    Please let us all know if you find an advert for the swine flu jab that claims it doesn’t cause narcolepsy. You then can submit a complaint to the ASA via their complaints page and to Trading Standards on the Consumer Direct website. Or perhaps you’d like to complain to the MHRA, who licence medicines.

  60. Informed consent and the Ashfar ruling makes it clear Zeno ‘any known significant side effect, however slight has to be made known to the recipient of any treatment in order for them to make an informed consent to treatment’

    It is simply not scientific to withold known information, but that is what the proper doctor medical research world has done for a long time and is still doing.

    Double standards for double dealing.

  61. I don’t see narcolepsy being listed along with many other known devestating side effects either, I suppose you would say as it’s ‘proper medicine delivered by proper doctors it’s ok, under the Bolam principle to cripple a few for the greater good?’

    Thing is the Bolam principle is now out of date, like vaccination.

  62. amazingrace

    So, have you submitted a complaint to the MHRA? And do you agree the same principle about ‘any known side-effect’ should apply to, say, chiropractors?

  63. Of course. When we look at ‘known side-effects’ we have to make sure that the data is not biased like often happens in meta reviews where ‘cherry picking’ is rife. Ernst is an expert at this, never does any research of his own only picks what he likes and then publishes.

  64. Unfortunately there is plenty of data out there Zeno, the medical industry, the researchers and the doctors who are aware of the mess of medical regulation all know that it is impossible to change anything from the bottom up.

    Tom Jefferson of the Cochraine Collaboration recently highlighted the total scandal in drug regulation, peer review and how effectively the endemic fraud in the ‘proper medical system’ is.

    I as an ordinary member of the public have no chance whatsoever in getting anywhere with a ‘medical complaint’ they even have their own ‘medical complaints thang the MHRA.

    Your task by contrast is totally easy, you use a public service, the ASA or trading standards, to complain about something that the orthodox system wants to abolish, whether it is effective or not, and it doesn’t cost you a penny.

    I would be more impressed with your efforts Zeno if you put it into something more society useful like banning childhood vaccines, but of course that would require questioning the status quo and looking at the evidence properly.

    Banning alternative approaches to health is not really in the interests of anyone except big pharma. I know you state that you have no interest in the corporate world but by default your head is up their arse.

    Sometimes we need to be told by people that care, that we need to wash, so get the soap out.

  65. That’s very disappointing, doublestandard. You say there is a serious problem out there, yet you seem to have given up before you’ve even started. You don’t seem to be willing to even try to do anything about it; not even submit a complaint — you just shrug your shoulders and have a bit of a moan and mutter stuff about dark conspiracies.

    Very disappointing indeed, doublestandard.

  66. It’s better to educate on the ground, validating corrupt ‘agencies’ to make decisions to pull methods they have already validated is not the way to achieve anything Zeno.

    Many have been campaigning for a long time to highlight the corruption, that is a daily task which has instant results.

    As the drop off for vaccination rates in educated families ramps up, this process will mean the end of the practice by financial default. After Wakefield brought the tragedy of measles vaccine to the attention of the public if we look at the measles rates pre Wakefield and compare them to post Wakefield the subsequent non take up of MMR lead to an 85% drop in measles rates.

    I am not interested in conspiracy theories, I just see business decisions being made, if you really think that using the Queens’ rules to rule out the Queen is an intelligent way to proceed you perhaps need to rethink what you think you are doing.

    It is much better to spend ones time giving people proper information so that they can make a properly informed decision, if we allow the state to make all the decisions we end up with a USA style democracy which effectively means no democracy. Business runs the country, look at the banking system, why do you trust this system to make truthful decisions Zeno?

  67. double standard said:

    It’s better to educate on the ground

    Why? Is it not better to tackle it using all the legal routes provided? A win there would have far greater benefit to society if you are right in your assertions.

    But this thread is not about vaccines or banks and I have never blogged about them, so this is all off-topic. I suggest you find a blog that talks about the disgraced Wakefield and try presenting your evidence there. Even better, you might like to contact your MP and see what he or she can do to help, particularly if you think people are suffering needlessly. I’m sure he or she will be equally concerned.

    I am not interested in conspiracy theories…

    So why continue to bring them up, then?

  68. I started reading comments bottom up so don’t know how you got on to vaccines but I got as far as this:

    “Your task by contrast is totally easy, you use a public service, the ASA or trading standards, to complain about something that the orthodox system wants to abolish, whether it is effective or not, and it doesn’t cost you a penny.” (my bold)

    What things do you have in mind that the “orthodox system wants to abolish” even though they are effective?

  69. Don’t worry Zeno and Jrm The International Medical Council on Vaccination has released a groundbreaking report signed by over 80 doctors, surgeons, clinicians and researchers who all refute the mythology and propaganda of the vaccine industry.


    So the campaign is well under way, by co incidence I met an immunologist today who after working in this world of myth for years has just had a baby.

    She has decided after considering the evidence that she is definetely not vaccinating her new child as the evidence for efficacy is non existant.

    JRM you can’t use Trading standards or ASA for medically orientated complaints, if you read the site you will find they are automatically refered them to the MHRA.

    The only way forward is to bypass these gatekeepers and blow the gaff on it wikileaks syle and that seems to be starting to happen.

    Thanks for your support Zeno but it looks like matters are in hand.

  70. LOL! A wise man or woman would not be taking their health advice from the self-styled ‘Health Ranger’!

    However, you still have a problem: the IMCV seems to have their hands full trying to convince the US authorities and citizens. I really think you should take your evidence to the MHRA — you may have to wait a long time before the IMCV can concentrate on the UK.

  71. That’s rich coming from a man who worships the only professor of complementary and alternative medicine who has no qualifications in any complementary or alternative therapy, that extracts anecdotes from thin air and claims to be the almighty, does no research of his own and writes for the Daily Mail.

    And sing simple Simon too! The tricky bollocks fable, a book full of self referential references, no wonder I could buy a signed copy on ebay for a couple of quid.

    Did you look at the charted downfall of the quackmaster general, looks like Barretts in the Berty Bassett.

  72. I’m not interested in vaccines. I’ll repeat my question in the hope that you will give a straightforward answer. You said:

    “Your task by contrast is totally easy, you use a public service, the ASA or trading standards, to complain about something that the orthodox system wants to abolish, whether it is effective or not, and it doesn’t cost you a penny.”

    And I asked:

    What things do you have in mind that the “orthodox system wants to abolish” even though they are effective?

    If you are unable to give a straight answer to this very simple question, I will take that as confirmation that you are nowt but a troll and wind-up merchant. The ball is in your court.

  73. Well looks like it’s balls all round then Jrm, it’s fun here, you can post what you like and read what people like you try to think, which isn’t very interesting actually. Do you read any books at all, or listen to much music?

    What a fascinating and wonderful world the septic tank is, can’t wait for something more public to turn up to.

  74. Just noticed that skeptics uk is now defunct, that took them rather a long time to admit, perhaps they all got atoned?

    It’s amazing what Reiki can achieve with distance healing.

  75. Chiropractic wellness on the web: The content and quality of information related to wellness and primary prevention on the Internet
    Marion WILLARD Evans Jr, Stephen M Perle and Harrison Ndetan

    An interesting article of how chiro’s see web content.

  76. “Website content could be enhanced by sharing of information from reputable sources like US Centres for Disease Control, the National Institutes of Health and other authoritative sources. HON certification should also be sought.

    but none had information supportive of vaccination.”

    The CDC is well known to only promote ‘therapies’ that generate income for private companies and is well behind the current scam of swine flu so how could any site be ‘enhanced’ by referring to nonsense posted on the CDC site?

    Why would any site that doesn’t benefit from ‘vaccine scam’ promote this archaic practice?

  77. Skeptics Uk forum dying must say something for the tenacity of the septic posters really, I wonder if their energy/funding ran out at the same time as the closure of drug company Pfizer’s UK base in Kent?

    Coincidence or just sound business sense, if the product isn’t selling, don’t sell it. I must add that the ridiculous stance by the septic hardcore on that site especially with regard to its almost religious mania at supporting the vaccine stance caused much mirth all round.

    Must be hard when the public don’t support you and the funding dries up, sort of shows up how shallow they were.

  78. horizontalbop said:

    The CDC is well known to only promote ‘therapies’ that generate income for private companies and is well behind the current scam of swine flu so how could any site be ‘enhanced’ by referring to nonsense posted on the CDC site?

    Again, nothing whatsoever to do with this blog, but I don’t suppose you have any more than hand-waving, vague assertions for any of that, do you? You know, that boring stuff called evidence.

  79. What you call ‘evidence’ is corporate bollocks. Either you know the whole peer review medical bandwagon is totally bent or you are part of it or you are totally naive. The main theme of this blog is ‘experts’ know best, it’s a pity the experts you quote are living in the dark ages and are paid to keep it that way. If you build a premise on sand Zeno there is no point discussing the building.

    The good news is you have no public support. So why do you think the septic uk tank bit the dust?

  80. I too could post a list of ‘claims for treatment’ from my local NHS trust and we find an interesting conundrum. How do they explain painkiller management as a treatment for arthritis when it is only suppressing the pain? It is not treating the arthritis. We could probably list every chronic illness and come to the same conclusion. The septic uk tank used to constantly think they had scored a point by saying treatment equated with cure and therefore CAM is weaselling.

    Medicine doesn’t cure anything, it buys time. If I went to a mechanic with a noisy car engine and he gave me earplugs I would not be impressed, when it eventually blew up being told it was genetic wouldn’t impress me either.

    Why are you obsessed with only applying your critique to CAM therapies, yes there is some bonkers CAM but most ordinary citizens can spot that the jalapeño pepper enema/LSD cure for cancer is probably bollocks. There is also a lot of far more dangerous ‘orthodox medicine’ that warrants more than just supporting as mainstream.

    A real scientist would properly engage with looking at hypothesis of approach, theories of application – the pathway of logic that has led to the approach. A PR scientist just sides with his peer group, nah nahs anything that challenges what he/she was taught. If you actually read the meta-reviews that Ernst cobbled together it only reveals that the studies he chose were done by people who had no understanding of the subject under analysis and nor does he.

    Remember the church used to burn people for believing in the vacuum, it wasn’t in the book so it didn’t exist. It is very parallel to your thinking process, a kind of churchytruthy science, only ‘respected people’ can speak sense.

    Medical science is the only branch of science that is not scientific, if you were in any way scientifically orientated you would see that. Telling us that you are only interested in highlighting claims to the ASA is just not good enough, what kind of weirdo gets off on telling tails on people but shows no interest in discussing what the problem is?

  81. ‘Fraid I’ve only had a quick skim and I still don’t see an answer to my original question so thanks for the confirmation.

    I heard the UK skeptics forum had been closed because one person – its owner – decided he didn’t want to keep it going. All the regular posters there are now posting at another place. I’m sure it won’t take you long to find it.

    Zeno is at the QED conference by the way.

  82. Oops, sorry – I shouldn’t have posted that last bit of info. I hope your crazed online stalker of the multiple user names doesn’t turn into your real life assassin, Zeno, but at least the evidence posted here speaks for itself.

  83. Jrm, in your dreams/fantasy, I don’t have any interest in stalking anyone, only a paranoid medical fantasist could dream that up.

    The real debates that are not taking place are ‘has the orthodox medical system got the right approach in the way it sees health and disease’ etc. Are the orthodox experts fit for purpose and actually experts at all?

    I have no interest in finding those boring people and then wasting hours of time talking with dolts. They all speak from the same hymn sheet and refuse to discuss anything outside their very narrow comfort zone, which has more holes than alpine cheese.

    Just looked at the QED conference line up, what a boring gig that looks like.

    “Speaking about ‘policy-based evidence’, Wendy will to show the danger of letting ideology lead the research.” So what exactly is the difference between ‘policy led’ and ‘biblical’ or ‘corporate’ led then Jrm?

    “It’s essentially a bit like Blue Peter, but with more swearing.” !!!!!!!!!!

    “The 10:23 Campaign seeks to raise public awareness about homoeopathy, what it is, what it’s not, how we know it doesn’t work and why you should care.” If you put ‘swine flu’ instead of the H word it would make more sense.

    Stunning line up then, not one rational discussion that attempts to look at whether or not the orthodox scientific view of things is either right or even going in the right direction. Bit like Noddy science meets Dame Cruela De Vile, I can’t think of anything more boring. I see you have Simple Simon talking about his self referential tricky book, don’t you accuse the alternative movement with this?

    I would love to know how many people actually go to this.

    Not answering questions is a feature of this blog jrm so I suppose you will just have to read between the lines.

  84. Here we are Zeno, this is the kind of standard you are supporting, perhaps you could bring this up at the Quids conference you are going to?

    Finnish medical journal Mediuutiset reported Friday that British drug maker GlaxoSmithKline was not liable to pay compensation for narcolepsy cases caused by the Pandemrix influenza vaccine. The National Institute for Health and Welfare (THL) confirmed that GlaxoSmithKline had been contractually relieved from liability. Mediuutiset added that other countries had signed similar agreements with vaccine makers.

    Our respective governments have given the vaccine manufacturers freedom from any liability / damage that their products may cause, thus serving the best interests of the pharmaceutical industry rather than their own electorate. Before you put that needle into your body or that of your child in the future, it is best to remember that if you lose this deadly vaccine Russian roulette as so many have done before you, you’re entirely on your own with the consequences.
    Helsinki Times, Finland

  85. How’s that for a boring piece of evidence then, I suppose it conflicts with your religious belief that vaccination is all good, does no harm……………………….

  86. Here’s something else for your conference Zeno, guess what patients who have GP’s trained in alternatives have lower costs and health insurers have spotted it!

    A small fraction of general practitioners (GPs) in the Netherlands has completed additional training in complementary medicine after obtaining their conventional medical degree. Using a data set from a health insurer, this paper documents that patients whose GP has additional training in anthroposophic medicine, homoeopathy, or acupuncture have substantially lower health care costs and lower mortality rates.

    The lower costs result from fewer hospital stays and fewer prescription drugs. Since the differences remain once we control for neighbourhood specific fixed effects at a highly detailed level, the lower costs and longer lives are unlikely to be related to differences in socio-economic status. Possible explanations are selection (e.g. people with a low taste for medical interventions might be more likely to choose CAM) and better practices (e.g. less over treatment, more focus on preventive and curative health promotion) by GPs with knowledge of complementary medicine.
    Peter Kooreman & Erik Baars, Tilburg University

  87. I heard a rumour that this site was dead too! Is it true that the funding’s run out for all this septic nonsense, please do let us know, it’s so exciting.

    Has the pussyseptic got the clap?

  88. Oh it’s your site that’s dead, sorry Alan somehow you both got mixed up, thanks for filling us all in.

    When’s the next exciting installment from the man from uncle, please do tell us all the free world depends on people like you.

    Glad pussyseptic hasn’t got the clap, maybe that got mixed up too, maybe it was mousetrap or claptrap?

    Have you got any replies in your mailbag or are they ignoring you too?

    The alanstar said in a previous bloggy:

    I’ll keep you updated and I’ll be blogging on the General Osteopathic Council‘s Code of Practice sometime soon.

    Update: 26 July 2009

    It will be the anniversary of this stunning action Alan, are you planning a party?