Respectful Insolence

I’m still perturbed about yesterday.

I’m still perturbed that a cancer quack was able to convince a woman who had everything to live for that he could cure her of her breast cancer without surgery, chemotherapy, or radiation. I’m still perturbed at this particular cancer quack’s attitude, where he tried to claim that he didn’t know the woman who is dying, Kim Tinkham, and imply that her cancer recurred because didn’t follow his regimen carefully enough, that she had stopped living the quack’s “alkaline diet.” I thought of my mother-in-law, who died in 2009 of metastatic breast cancer, and watching her decline.

And then I thought of Oprah Winfrey and her role in what ultimately happened to Kim Tinkham.

After all, it was Oprah who promoted the mystical New Age woo that is The Secret. It was The Secret that inspired Kim Tinkham, after she was diagnosed with breast cancer, to refuse the conventional therapy that might very well have saved her life and opt instead for Robert O. Young’s acid-base pseudoscience that claims that the tumor in cancer is not the actual disease but rather the reaction to cells “spoiled” by acid. Were it not for Oprah, Tinkham might not have gotten the validation and fame that she did. She herself said that being on Oprah made her famous enough that when she called various doctors and scientists they actually took her calls. Finally, it was Oprah Winfrey who, rather than trying to hook Tinkham up with real cancer experts, instead brought her on her show because it was good television. Yes, Oprah did make an effort to try to get Tinkham to see reason, but it was half-hearted and never challenged the credentials of the “practitioner” into whose clutched Tinkham had fallen.

And now Oprah Winfrey is on the verge of starting up her own “health network,” the Oprah Winfrey Network (OWN), which will take the place of Discovery Health on January 1, 2011. At that point, she’ll have an entire 24/7 cable network to spread her New Age woo, woo like The Secret that entrapped Kim Tinkham. That’s why, on the eve of Oprah’s new cable channel, I think it’s time to remind Oprah of Kim Tinkham. Yes, Oprah has forgotten about Kim Tinkham. It was, after all, nearly four years ago that Tinkham was on her show. She made good TV for one episode. Now she’s dying, most likely because of a course of action that had its roots in New Age nonsense that Oprah Winfrey promoted. It’s entirely appropriate to remind Oprah Winfrey of what she has inadvertently wrought. Indeed, in the wake of Oprah’s recent promotion of faith healer and “psychic surgeon” John of God, doing so is more imperative than ever.

Oprah needs to know what can happen when people choose quackery and woo instead of effective science-based medicine.

You, my readers, are just the folks to inform Oprah (or at least Oprah’s producers), too. You can do it by heading to Oprah’s contact page and letting her know what happened to Kim Tinkham. You might even, if you think it appropriate, send her links to the Caring for Kim website and, more heart-wrenching, the Caring for Kim Facebook page, where posts by the numerous well-wishers and several of Tinkham’s friends and family describing what can only be considered a death vigil are bound to bring a tear to the eye. If enough people do it, Oprah’s producers will take notice. Maybe they’ll even look into what has happened to Kim Tinkham, at which point they’ll learn that she doesn’t have long to live. It’s true that there is a risk to this strategy; Oprah might actually do a story on Tinkham and find that Tinkham, even though she’s dying, is still completely devoted to Robert O. Young, the dubious practitioner whose nostrums brought her to this point by wasting time that could better have been used pursuing effective treatment. She might even bring attention on Young that could raise his profile. These are risks worth taking. There is even the risk that it may be that Tinkham is not dying of breast cancer; however, being a skeptic I would rather know that I was mistaken than continue to argue for something that is not supported by the evidence.

Be that as it may, this strategy requires a lot of people bombarding the Oprah website with requests. It’s unlikely to work just from my readership alone. It needs other bloggers willing to urge their readers to do the same thing to have even a wisp of a chance of working. So, if you have a blog, consider urging your readers to remind Oprah’s producers about Kim Tinkham. Let’s put it this way. Even if nothing at all comes of this, at the very least Oprah should be made aware of the price of quackery such as that which is about to claim Kim Tinkham. Yes, I know that Tinkham is an adult. I know that she bears major responsibility for her own choices. Yes, I know it’s true that no one forced Tinkham to go to Robert O. Young for help. On the other hand, I also know that it is true that the sort of wishful thinking that Oprah promoted “primed the pump,” so to speak. Even so, Robert O. Young and, yes, Oprah also bear a major share of the responsibility as well. Robert O. Young is beyond shame, but maybe Oprah is not.

Comments

  1. #1 René Najera
    December 7, 2010

    Actions, Ideas, Thoughts, and Beliefs, all have consequences. I wonder if Young sleeps well at night?

  2. #2 Cuttlefish, OM
    December 7, 2010

    Did Oprah ever comment publicly about the James Arthur Ray deaths in Arizona?
    http://digitalcuttlefish.blogspot.com/2009/10/greed-and-woo-kill-two-in-az.html

    Hey, is anyone here a producer? I have an idea for Oprah’s health network–each week, a new investigation into something Oprah got wrong, that ended with somebody dying. After a year or two, we can branch out to other talk show hosts, like Montel’s support of Sylvia, but it seems to me there’s plenty of material here!

  3. #3 Sue
    December 7, 2010

    Wait a minute. The Oprah Winfrey Network is taking the place of Discovery Health? Are you kidding???? Discovery Health isn’t perfect by a long shot (at least the last time I watched it) but it’s vastly better than 24/7 woo. Maybe I’m not so sorry I don’t get anything more than very basic cable after all.

  4. #4 Joe
    December 7, 2010

    Perhaps if you contact PZ Myers about this you can get a really big response. Today, one must be registered to post on his blog and I am not registered.

  5. #5 Phoenix Woman
    December 7, 2010

    Thanks for this, Orac.

    Quick O/T, but with the increased attention paid to autism (and correspondingly increased diagnosis rate), the number of autism scammers has increased as well:

    The glut of new money and public awareness has attracted its fair share of shysters. One Rochester, Minnesota, woman working as a treasurer siphoned $42,655 off a charity started by the parents of an autistic boy. In West Virginia, three people were accused of selling $74,000 worth of laptops, promising the proceeds would go to a national autism charity—they pocketed the cash instead. In Connecticut, a woman charged parents and a local school district $180,000 for autism therapy, claiming she had decades of experience—in truth she hadn’t even finished high school.

    “There’s people wanting to jump on the bandwagon of, ‘How can I make a lot of money in this area?’” says Dr. Lawrence P. Kaplan, CEO of U.S. Autism and Asperger Association. “You have to be very, very careful about what their mission is and what’s behind it.”

    SAFER donors thought they knew Mario Cortolezzis. The fact that his life was personally touched by autism was all the credentials he needed.

    “Who wouldn’t believe it?” says Deputy Karnes. “You have a son with autism and this is for him.”

  6. #6 MikeMa
    December 7, 2010

    Rene,
    I suspect Young’s sleep depends on the size of his bank account. I’m guessing he sleeps well indeed.

  7. #7 ferp
    December 7, 2010

    The problem is that advertisements that carefully detail why their product works and the technical reasons for their product being the superior choice often fail to grab people’s attention compared to a really small ad that says “YOU WILL DIE FROM TOXINS IF YOU DON’T BUY THIS”. Fearmongering sells much better than rationality.

  8. #8 Raging Bee
    December 7, 2010

    Fearmongering sells much better than rationality.

    Well, a decent summation of facts could paint a big, clear picture of failure and dishonesty on the part of the woo-meisters Oprah promotes. That could make for some GREAT fearmongering.

  9. #9 Paul aka Nescio
    December 7, 2010

    I left a comment on the Oprah website yesterday on the community page where someone had asked, some time ago, what had happened to Kim Tinkham.

    I have a slight concern that the reports I have seen state that Kim Tinkham has been diagnosed with cancer. This implies that she had cancer 3 years ago, was cured by puréed broccoli and magic alkalising powders, but has now succumbed to a different cancer. It is very much more likely that her untreated breast cancer has metastasized to her bones, liver and lungs, as untreated breast cancer usually does. This distortion of the facts allows people to maintain their faith in Young’s delusional belief system.

  10. #10 Denice Walter
    December 7, 2010

    @ ferp: Aha! You have revealed the woo-meisters’ principal means of persuasion! This is usually rapidly followed by,” I have ‘insider’ information about the corruption, lies, and wrong-doings that occur among the *elites* in the corporate-pharmaco-medico-educational-governmental matrix “( or is it “cartel”?) **. Then they tell you to ” follow the money!” to uncover the culprits- which is rather ironic, being that they appear to quite flush themselves

    **On a recent day trip by train, I read Kevin Trudeau’s, ” More Natural ‘Cures’ Revealed”- with the title carefully obscured, so other travellers wouldn’t think ill of me- oh, it’s a laugh riot!

  11. #11 DW
    December 7, 2010

    Sorry about the inadvertent double!

  12. #12 Militant Agnostic
    December 7, 2010

    I wonder if Young sleeps well at night?

    I am sure that Kim Tinkham ate at McDonald’s or had doughnut once, so he can blame her death on that. Also, what MikeMa said.

  13. #13 Wow...
    December 7, 2010

    The last time I checked people die from cancer who have been aggressively treated with chemo, radiation, etc. etc… For example, Elizabeth Edwards… I assume she has done a fairly conventional treatment plan… And yet, well….. It happens. You make it seem as if she had only done this (ie conventional treatment), then this wouldn’t be happening. That’s a load of bs, as you know.

  14. #14 augustine
    December 7, 2010

    “Let Oprah know that Kim Tinkham is dying of cancer”

    Let her also know, for balance, that 110 women died of breast cancer TODAY under conventional medical care.

  15. #15 T. Bruce McNeely
    December 7, 2010

    You make it seem as if she had only done this (ie conventional treatment), then this wouldn’t be happening. That’s a load of bs, as you know.

    Reading comprehension FAIL.

    Stage 3 breast cancer has approximately 50% survival rate with conventional treatment. It has a 0% survival rate with “Dr.” Young’s treatment. No one is saying Ms. Tinkham would have a guaranteed cure. However, 50% is better odds than 0%.

    Is that simple enough for you?

  16. #16 ferp
    December 7, 2010

    It’s kind of sad, but you can clearly see the signs that Kim was not someone who knew how to research or critically think if you take a look at Kim’s blog:

    http://www.cancerangel.blogspot.com/ (it’s linked to from her main cancerangel.com site)

    The blog was actually where she was posting excerpts from the chapters of the book she had been writing. Some of the entries are rather disturbingly telling:

    “I felt my right breast and felt the tumor. It was still there and the temperature of it was much hotter than the rest of my body. I knew that this tumor had been crafted through years of resentment.”

    Kim appears to have suffered from a number of issues, all of which factored into her decision to go with Young’s treatment. She appears to fantasize (or genuinely believes) that she talks to angels, she seems to be in denial about the state of her cancer, and she doesn’t even seem to have understood the cause of her cancer (choosing instead to blame herself because of perceived personal failings).

    From what I’ve been reading, I’m almost positive that any of Kim’s close friends should have been able to see the signs that she was not capable of making an informed decision with regards to her own health…

  17. #17 Scott
    December 7, 2010

    The last time I checked people die from cancer who have been aggressively treated with chemo, radiation, etc. etc… For example, Elizabeth Edwards… I assume she has done a fairly conventional treatment plan… And yet, well….. It happens. You make it seem as if she had only done this (ie conventional treatment), then this wouldn’t be happening. That’s a load of bs, as you know.

    Oh yes, Orac definitely “make[s] it seem as if she had only done this, then this wouldn’t be happening.” How else could the following quote from the ‘finale’ post possibly be construed?

    The most depressing thing about this testimonial is that it did not have to be this way. It really didn’t. If Kim Tinkham did indeed have stage III cancer in 2007, she would have had (roughly) a 50-50 chance of beating it if she had only accepted science-based treatment. Not fantastic odds, but way better than the odds she faced by not accepting treatment. By refusing science-based surgical and medical therapy, she reduced her chances to about as close to zero as you can get. Yes, it’s true, even if she had accepted aggressive science-based therapy, including surgery, chemotherapy, and radiation, that Tinkham might still have ultimately found herself in this situation, but refusing therapy guaranteed it.

    IOW, you’re full of it.

  18. #18 bobh
    December 7, 2010

    Orac, thank you for this site. While I haven’t posted here often, it is one of my favorite blogs. An anecdote is not data but I will share one anyway. In 1995 my wife was diagnosed with stage 4 breast cancer (7 involved lymph nodes). at the same time an acquaintance of hers was diagnosed with breast cancer. She fell into the woo immdiately and died about three years later. My wife went through surgery, chemotherapy. radiation. In two years it was in her lungs and bones, more radiation, more chemo, including herceptin. It showed up in her brain, more radiation. As we discussed, we knew that her cancer was going to kill her, but my wife fought because she wanted to see our 3 kids graduate from HS. After a ten year fight she lost her battle when it reemerged in her brain. During that 10 years she went to Europe twice with her 2 daughters as a HS chaperone; she took her scout troop on multiple wilderness adventures; she saw her kids graduate from HS and 2 of them graduate from college. No there is no magic cure for 4th stage breast cancer and yes it can be very difficult at times, but my wifes courage allowed her to live a very full and important life for many years longer than she would have with woo.

  19. #19 ferp
    December 7, 2010

    “That’s a load of bs, as you know.”

    What’s actually bullshit is your argument that choosing a method that works none of the time is just as valid as a method that works at least half of the time. Proper care gives you nonzero odds of survival. Going to a quack doctor results in a whopping 0% chance of surviving, not to mention you might as well be flushing money down your toilet. I fail to see how this is a difficult concept to grasp.

  20. #20 MikeMa
    December 7, 2010

    @ferp,
    The ‘load of bs’ is directed at science, authority, and people educated beyond what the poster is capable of understanding. Fear and resentment fuel such crap. If the quack is selling easy-to-understand, we-have-a-secret woo, someone in the position of distrust and/or fear will often choose unwisely as Kim did.

    Anecdotes often play a leading role in misleading the fearful. Someones sister-in-laws aunt tried this and she did really well is sometimes all that a person needs to run away from tough choices. Oprah made it even worse by broadcasting the crap so widely.

    People do go into remission with or without Young’s alkalinity woo. Marketing is everything but it all comes down to odds. If you want the best odds, go with science.

  21. #21 Calli Arcale
    December 7, 2010

    Wow, if you’d been following this on the blog, especially when Orac discussed her case at length, you’d know that she had closer to a 50/50 chance, and that Orac acknowledged that yes, she had a decent chance of ending up just like this anyway.

    But here’s a question for you, Wow. Do you think it’s fair to sell a treatment with a 0% chance of success as equivalent or superior to one with a 50% chance of success? Tinkham went from having only a 50/50 chance of survival to having no chance of survival. Young, “The Secret”, Oprah, and a society committed to the power of positive thinking all persuaded her to throw that 50% chance away.

    Instead of maybe dying, she is now definitely dying. And that is not BS at all.

  22. #22 Richard Wolford, PhD
    December 7, 2010

    Let her also know, for balance, that 110 women died of breast cancer TODAY under conventional medical care.

    And how many women did NOT die today under conventional medical care? You seem to have a very poor grasp of both logic and reality you insolent little twirp. In fact, here’s something you should do to show how evil conventional medical care is. Inject yourself with breast cancer cells, allow it to reach stage 4 and allow it to metastasize in your body. Then I want you to cure yourself using whatever herbal, new-age load of shit you happen to be peddling. My good friend of over a decade died of lung cancer (non-smoker), and rest assured I consider sniveling little know-nothings like you to be absolute slime, turning your nose up at conventional science based medicine until, Yahweh forbid, YOU get sick, then I’m sure your stupid little ass will be first in line at the hospital to find one of those evil, evil doctors and beg them to fix you.

    Hypocritical fuckwad nicely sums you up.

  23. #23 gwen
    December 7, 2010

    Oprah is now pushing ‘John of God’ on her show. She believes that charlatan is real.. epic failure on her part…and an opportunity to do even more damage!

  24. #24 ferp
    December 7, 2010

    “Let her also know, for balance, that 110 women died of breast cancer TODAY under conventional medical care.”

    More wonderful nuggets of wisdom from the delightful “women are stupid because they’re prone to hysterics” troll, augustine.

  25. #25 augustine
    December 7, 2010

    Bruce

    It has a 0% survival rate with “Dr.” Young’s treatment. No one is saying Ms. Tinkham would have a guaranteed cure. However, 50% is better odds than 0%.
    Is that simple enough for you?

    ZERO %? Do you have a citation or reference for that with actual study subjects? Or are you merely making huge leaps of conclusions through inference without citations. If you were on the spitting end of Chris she would demand empirical proof of your claim

    When you’re a self proclaimed science blogger you don’t have to use critical thinking yourself you only have to accuse others of not using it.

    If you don’t know. Say you don’t know. Don’t make stuff up. It’s downright unscientific of you. It may be a 1% survival rate. It may be a 99%. You don’t know.

  26. #26 augustine
    December 7, 2010

    And how many women did NOT die today under conventional medical care? You seem to have a very poor grasp of both logic and reality you insolent little twirp.

    Mr. Wolford, why don’t you use your PhD and tell me how many women would have died today had they not had conventional medical oncology? Then tell me how you came to that conclusion using only the scientific method. Please refrain from using some flawed mathematical model and calling it science.

    P.S. If you think your flawed mathematical model is tight then please post it so I can use it for next sunday’s football predictions.

  27. #27 longsmith
    December 7, 2010

    Whoa, Dr. Woford, tell us how you really feel! Actually, I concur.

  28. #28 Jud
    December 7, 2010

    augustine writes:

    Let [Oprah] also know, for balance, that 110 women died of breast cancer TODAY under conventional medical care.

    As others have pointed out, a 50% probability of survival is very much preferable to a 0% probability. Also, depending on the type of breast cancer, its progression, etc., conventional medical treatment may not include the scenarios many fear (mastectomy, chemotherapy).

    ISTM woo is to some extent a continuation of the denial that folks with any scary diagnosis can be susceptible to. Unconventional “treatment” is partway to convincing yourself you don’t have the conventional disease, and/or will not be subject to the conventional course.

  29. #29 DonZilla
    December 7, 2010

    Denice and ferp: you rock as usual!

    Don’t forget these web ads that have been sprouting up recently:

    “(insert specialty here) Doctors are scared because this (insert easily understandable, cheap, simplistic cure here) has been discovered by a (insert location here) MOM!

  30. #30 Jud
    December 7, 2010

    Jud wrote:

    Also, depending on the type of breast cancer, its progression, etc., conventional medical treatment may not include the scenarios many fear (mastectomy, chemotherapy).

    Let me clear up the reference to “chemotherapy.” Two women I know chose in consultation with their physicians to have radiation-only, rather than radiation plus chemotherapy, following lumpectomies, but they are both taking tamoxifen following radiation.

  31. #31 Ian
    December 7, 2010

    Cross-posted on my own site, on Canadian Atheist, Tweeted, e-mailed, and someone beat me to reddit but it’s there in /r/skepticism.

    Maybe I should send a WUPHF…

  32. #32 Mephistopheles O'Brien
    December 7, 2010

    As others have pointed out, a 50% probability of survival is very much preferable to a 0% probability.

    Ah, but as Augustine will no doubt tell you, probabilities mean nothing! You are far better off being the one person in ten million who manages to recover spontaneously while using WOYC (woo of your choice) than one of the 50% who doesn’t survive with conventional treatment! Take that, statisticians!

  33. #33 Ge
    December 7, 2010

    “Let her also know, for balance, that 110 women died of breast cancer TODAY under conventional medical care.”

    Let her also know, for balance, that it would have been 220 women if we didn’t have conventional medical care.

  34. #34 ferp
    December 7, 2010

    On a recent day trip by train, I read Kevin Trudeau’s, ” More Natural ‘Cures’ Revealed”- with the title carefully obscured, so other travellers wouldn’t think ill of me”

    Now that I think about it, I’d be way more worried about having someone who believes in that nonsense sit down and start talking to me loudly about how getting peach juice enemas cured their hiccups or some bullshit for the rest of the trip.

    Reminds me of the plane trip I had where, while reading a book, some guy kept trying to talk to me and ended up being the most annoying passenger ever (in an “oh please shut up, shut up, shut up, can’t you see this book”) at one point he told me he was doing grad student studying guidance counseling or human behaviour, or something along those lines that struck me as painfully ironic.

  35. #35 Janet Camp
    December 7, 2010

    I will write to Oprah.

    Thank you BobH for your very moving anecdote. It is definitely evidence of how much you loved your wife. The case you present is backed up by science, so it’s an anecdote that exemplifies the science, not a meaningless testimonial meant to sell some woo.

  36. #36 augustine
    December 7, 2010

    Let her also know, for balance, that it would have been 220 women if we didn’t have conventional medical care.

    REally? can you prove that with peer reviewed citations? NO you can’t. You just made that up.

  37. #37 NZ Sceptic
    December 7, 2010

    I doubt Oprah will be remotely interested. She’s far too busy whipping up an enormous publicity and promotional storm for herself over in Australia right now!

  38. #38 The Head Geek
    December 7, 2010

    When asked what he was dying of, he simply answered “irony”.

  39. #39 Gray Falcon
    December 7, 2010

    If you don’t know. Say you don’t know. Don’t make stuff up. It’s downright unscientific of you. It may be a 1% survival rate. It may be a 99%. You don’t know.

    It’s called the null hypothesis. We do know that breast cancer always kills if left untreated based on observation and studies, and the null hypothesis is that the alkali treatment is useless. One has to find evidence to prove otherwise.

    Let her also know, for balance, that it would have been 220 women if we didn’t have conventional medical care.

    That’s called mathematics. We know from experience and observation that there’s approximately a 50/50 chance of survival with treatment, so that number was produced based on that result.

    Of course, you managed to ruin any chance of being taken seriously by questioning the concept of probability. That’s a bit like a prosecutor trying to get a conviction by saying “Yes, we know the defendant was in New York City at the time of the crime, but how do we know he wasn’t in Paris as well?”

  40. #40 dedicated lurker
    December 7, 2010

    Denice – I thought “Natural Cures” was a laugh riot myself, but the sequel “More Natural Cures Revealed” was much less funny. At least with the first one, the “how to never get sick again” chapter sent me in to uncontrollable fits of laughter.

  41. #41 Richard
    December 7, 2010

    It seems like everybody worships her and no one ever holds her accountable.

  42. #42 augustine
    December 7, 2010

    Gary Falcon:

    Of course, you managed to ruin any chance of being taken seriously by questioning the concept of probability.

    You lost any chance of being taken serious by not recognizing the proper application and limits of probability guessing.

    You should take your scientificness to vegas and go all in. Twice. You’ll never be beaten. You’ll show them all who’s the boss once and for all. You’re so smart nobody could beat you. Not even a closed system of games.

  43. #43 Joreth
    December 7, 2010

    I am appalled by your uncaring, criminally negligent promotion of any charlatan that crosses your path. I am holding you personally responsible for the upcoming death of Kim Tinkham. She took your recommendation for The Secret and other medically unsound advice, and is now dying of a cancer that could have been prevented.

    You should feel ashamed and guilty at the part you played in her death. You are the most powerful woman in the world; what you say, your readers take as Gospel; what you endorse, your readers accept as Truth, trusting you to have done the proper research before presenting it to them. They are not stupid, make no mistake that I am insulting their intelligence. They are human, and people trust important celebrities like you to not deceive them when they present pseudoscience as science and lies as fact.

    You have had Kim Tinkham on your show and I will give you credit for looking uncomfortable when she admitted to eschewing all proper medical attention for her cancer. But you continue to promote The Secret, which is directly responsible for her decision to do so, and you promote hucksters like John of God, with his obviously fake parlor tricks that have been revealed and denounced decades ago.

    Kim Tinkham is responsible for her own decisions, and her “doctor”, Robert O. Young is not just criminally negligent, but criminally murderous for his role in Kim’s (and others’) case. But you are responsible for encouraging and spreading the types of lies and myths that result in otherwise intelligent and educated people like Kim pursuing these quacks and snake-oil nostrums. You have such a broad reach, that one whisper from you is like that fateful butterfly whose wings cause a breeze that results in a tsunami on the other side of the world.

    As trite as it may seem, coming from a comic book movie, “with great power comes great responsibility”. You, Ms. Winfrey, have great power to influence millions of people. You are not living up to your responsibility. If you can’t handle this kind of responsibility, if you can only palm it off on your audience by leaving it up to them to do the research your money and staff should have been doing before you promoted the quackery you did, then you do not deserve your power.

    Do the honorable thing and possibly redeem a portion of the respect that the legitimate science community has lost for you by retracting your support for The Secret, John of God, and the other quacks who convince your audience that wishful thinking can cure their cancers or that the “medical establishment” is “out to get them”. You have the power to actually influence the tide of public opinion in this country, and you could contribute to the improvement of health of the entire nation if only you wielded your power for good.

    Do the right thing.

    (posted as an Open Letter on my blog at http://joreth.livejournal.com/231355.html)

  44. #44 Joreth
    December 7, 2010

    Damn, I forgot to preface that with “I sent the following email to OWN”. Sorry.

  45. #45 ferp
    December 7, 2010

    Augustine, you would have a lot more credibility if you could show evidence that untreated cancer or cancers treated by quack doctors have anything other than a 0% survival rate. Cancer is not something you survive by ignoring it; if your cancer goes into remission, you haven’t been cured – it’s just being lazy and taking a fucking break from killing you. Eventually it gets back to business.

    How do you live with yourself knowing you’re a pathological liar and asshole? Seriously, I marvel at the thought that your intestines haven’t yet leapt up through your neck and throttled your brain in an attempt to spare humanity your existence.

  46. #46 Chris
    December 7, 2010

    ferp:

    How do you live with yourself knowing you’re a pathological liar and asshole?

    Easy, he does not even know that he is (think of it as an extreme form of the Dunning-Kruger effect). What you are dealing with is a homeschooled thirteen year old who sometimes gets access to the internet. It looks like he gets caught out, and gets cut off… which is why he disappears for a while. Just ignore him. He is not worth your time.

  47. #47 augustine
    December 7, 2010

    ferp

    Augustine, you would have a lot more credibility …

    Like I care about your approval.

    Seriously, I marvel at the thought that your intestines haven’t yet leapt up through your neck and throttled your brain in an attempt to spare humanity your existence.

    Sorry but I don’t use Rotarix or RotaTeq so I can decrease my chances of those side effects happening. Unfortunately some babies are victims of those unnecessary vaccines.

  48. #48 augustine
    December 7, 2010

    Chris

    Easy, he does not even know that he is..

    I’m simply baffling to this know it all angry mother. There isn’t anything she isn’t right about. Even her politics and opinions. I’d like to see her and ORAC get into it. HMMM.

    Do you always tuck tail and run when you’re caught in a contradiction? You know, like sir Robin.

  49. #49 T-Dog
    December 7, 2010

    Skip down to “Legal Issues”

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Robert_Young_(author)

  50. #50 Pareidolius
    December 7, 2010

    Augustine = Poe. Like a bad movie villain, he’s just a little too bad to be believed. Each comment invokes images of him sitting in his concrete, steel and leather underground lair, stroking his fluffy white cat, imagining that we writhe in agony at each of his cripplingly brilliant zingers. What a maroon . . .

    And back on topic, consider the big O notified . . .

  51. #51 Ge
    December 7, 2010

    He Augustine,

    You don’t understand the meaning of sarcasm, do you. You’re number was pretty stupid: the fact that 110 women die each day of this terrible decease is horrible. Bringing it up without context was meaningless, however. Ik wonder what you where trying to prove with this number. That those women wouldn’t have died if they had followed Robert O. Young’s treatments? They would have. Breast cancer rates have been going down. Only one in 35 people die of breast cancer. That’s still to high: but the rate is going down every year. And if people would put there money into cancer-research instead of woo, the rates would go down a lot faster.

    Fact is that people have been dying for thousands of years while following non-scientific therapys. Woo has had it’s chance to heal people. It didn’t work. We tested what would work: we researched what might work and we disregarded the treatments that had no effect or are harmfull. The working treatments that remain are called medicine. Learn to live with it. Because without it you will probably die younger.

  52. #52 Mephistopheles O'Brien
    December 7, 2010

    @Augustine,

    You said that 110 women died of breast cancer today under conventional medical care. Do you have a source for that? Considering today’s not done, is that so far today or a projection for the entire 24 hours?

  53. #53 Janet C.
    December 7, 2010

    @Chris

    I love your smackdown of Augustine, but don’t be so hard on homeschooled kids. We don’t all homeschool to keep science away from them. I home-educated my youngest until he went to prep school at age 14. He’s profoundly gifted and was just way too bored at the podunk town school (full of New Agey teachers) on the island we lived on. He scored in the 99th percentile on the PSAT, which was the first test he ever took. He’s a well schooled little skeptic today and on the way to being very well-educated in the traditional way (college).

    It’s a stereotype that all home schoolers are psycho-christians. We call our group UNschoolers, simply meaning that if the schools in one’s area are not adequate and you can’t afford or get to a good private school, then you must take matters into your own hands and see that your child gets the necessary basic skills and social interaction that he or she needs. You draw on the community and others with various expertise and facilitate your child’s learning. He speaks pretty fluent Japanese, too.

  54. #54 Ge
    December 7, 2010

    I wonder how many of those 110 women have needlesly died, refusing treatment, thanks to people pushing woo.

  55. #55 Chris
    December 7, 2010

    Janet C.:

    I love your smackdown of Augustine, but don’t be so hard on homeschooled kids.

    I have known several great homeschooled kids, including the kids of my son’s speech therapist. The bit about Little Augie comes from a comment he made: Gotta go for now. My homeschool teacher is calling..

    His acts like a thirteen year old who leads a very sheltered life.

  56. #56 Composer99
    December 7, 2010

    The ugh troll @ 49 seems to be into projection, now, too.

  57. #57 Janet Camp
    December 7, 2010

    Elizabeth Edwards has died. RIP

    She got six years with standard treatment and had ER type which is most often a killer.

    Whatever happened the last year or so with the Edwards’, she accomplished a lot. I am the same age, so it’s kind of an odd feeling.

    ———-

    @Chris

    Thanks for the follow up. Smile.

  58. #58 Reginald
    December 7, 2010

    Kim Tinkham has passed away as of about an hour ago according to the Facebook page.

    It is a sunny day with no birds singing.

  59. #59 ferp
    December 7, 2010

    Well Robert O. Young, a woman is dead because of you. She could very well have beaten her cancer and gone on to live happily for many years, but you robbed her of that chance.

    I hope you’re fucking happy, you piece of shit scamming quack.

  60. #60 augustine
    December 7, 2010

    Young’s treatments are becoming more difficult to get because the FDA is cracking down on people dealing with acid treatments because, after all, doctors don’t get any money off of this. And doctors make a lot of money when you’re sick, they don’t make any money when you are well. The Bible says the love of money is the root of all evil.

  61. #61 augustine
    December 7, 2010

    GE

    Breast cancer rates have been going down. Only one in 35 people die of breast cancer.

    I’ll assume you mean death rates. That’s what happens when you start diagnosing more cancer that wouldn’t have killed someone in the first place. And that’s also what happens when you can diagnose more cancers before the 5 year survival cutoff. It tends to “play” with the numbers and lead people to false conclusions.

    Or you could mean that breast cancer deaths have been going down because someone questioned the doctors orders about HRT. Less HRT. Less cancer. Did SBM question HRT in the 90′s? Nope. It was too busy quackfighting to see that it was causing cancer.

  62. #62 augustine
    December 7, 2010

    GE

    The working treatments that remain are called medicine.

    What will you call them tommorrow when they are discarded for dare I say, “more scientific” treatment?

    Will you still call it medicine or the treatment formerly known as medicine?

  63. #63 Tsu Dho Nimh
    December 7, 2010

    From Facebook, from her sister (2 hours before this post) – “Kim just passed. I was there by her side and it was peaceful. Thank you for all the kind words.”

  64. #64 augustine
    December 7, 2010

    ferp

    Well Robert O. Young, a woman is dead because of you. She could very well have beaten her cancer and gone on to live happily for many years, but you robbed her of that chance.I hope you’re fucking happy, you piece of shit scamming quack.

    You might want to ease up there twerp. If oncology had a better track record of curing cancer than it has, and if it didn’t have such brutal therapies then you might have a stance. Plenty of people have died brutally in the name of conventional oncology.

  65. #65 ferp
    December 7, 2010

    “If oncology had a better track record of curing cancer than it has, and if it didn’t have such brutal therapies then you might have a stance. Plenty of people have died brutally in the name of conventional oncology.”

    Since apparently oncology isn’t good enough for you, then by all means please; if you discovered you had stage 3 breast cancer, which would you choose as treatment? Robert O. Young’s pH ‘treatments’, or conventional medicine?

    Also, if you had a choice of using any ‘alternative health’ method that’s currently available to cure your cancer, what would you use?

  66. #66 Mephistopheles O'Brien
    December 7, 2010

    @63

    What will you call them tommorrow when they are discarded for dare I say, “more scientific” treatment?

    Any new treatments won’t be “more scientific” any more than quantum mechanics is “more scientific” than classical physics.

    When new treatments are found to be safer or more effective than existing treatments – through science – they will be called “the current standard of care”. Previous treatments will be known as “formerly used treatments” or possibly even “outmoded” treatments. Both will still be medicine; depending on how much more effective the new treatments are, the old may still have some use or may be discarded completely.

  67. #67 Shane
    December 7, 2010

    Would “Augustine” be from San Augustine? That would explain a lot.

  68. #68 JP
    December 7, 2010

    augustine@ 62 asks “Did SBM question HRT in the 90s?”

    Yes, actually beginning in the late 80s.

  69. #69 Boo
    December 7, 2010

    Hey augustine!

    Show us the proof! Or has some vast conspiracy theory hidden it all? How about the years of reasearch, the researchers and their qualifications that led to this magnificent pile of woo? And remember, discrediting the ‘opposition’ does not automatcially validate your woo. Very basic science. If you have no answer, you have a question (if that). At the moment you have not even so much as presented a valid question, backed by some credible evidence. By definition, that is woo.

  70. #70 Denice Walter
    December 7, 2010

    @ dedicated lurker: I read the second book because it was given to me ( bought for $1 at a yard sale); like most sophomore** efforts, it trades heavily on its predecessor’s uh,…”merits” . I make a practice of *never* paying anything for pseudoscience- I’ll read ( new or used) books given to me ; I occasionally look up woo in a library or book store, although it irks me that they stock it; I even attended a free book signing /lecture by science’s *persona non grata*, Gary Null. My motto : ” Not one penny for nonsense.”

    ** it was also sophomoric.

  71. #71 augustine
    December 7, 2010

    augustine@ 62 asks “Did SBM question HRT in the 90s?”
    Yes, actually beginning in the late 80s.

    They must have called themselves something else back then.LOL
    quackwatch has nothing but attacks on HRT alternatives. Typical MO.

  72. #72 augustine
    December 7, 2010

    When new treatments are found to be safer or more effective than existing treatments – through science – they will be called “the current standard of care”.

    I suppose we should call vioxx, avandia, arsenic, and others “formerly standard of care”.

    We can just tell the dead. Sorry, that’s just how science works.

  73. #73 JP
    December 7, 2010

    augustine@ 62 asks “Did SBM question HRT in the 90s?”

    Yes, actually beginning in the late 80s.

  74. #74 Jackie Fox
    December 7, 2010

    Yo, Orac–
    I did blog about Kim Tinkham after I discovered your blog in June
    http://bit.ly/dUeKjL

    –and I will blog about it again as you asked, I hope others do too. Thank you for beating the drums on this. It’s just such a shame. I hope she rests in peace.

  75. #75 JP
    December 7, 2010

    Sorry about my double post @74

    augustine@72 are you considering the quackwatch website the totality of science-based medicine? I wouldn’t recommend that. I would recommend PubMed.

  76. #76 Mephistopheles O'Brien
    December 7, 2010

    @73 – So you object to the concept of improvement? You believe that once a treatment is adopted is should never be replaced by something safer and more effective?

  77. #77 augustine
    December 7, 2010

    JP

    augustine@72 are you considering the quackwatch website the totality of science-based medicine? I wouldn’t recommend that. I would recommend PubMed.

    I hope you’re joking. I’ll give you some time to retract that or modify it. If not I’ll wait for you or your fellow science bloggers to come in and rescue you from your SBM mistakes. Seriously? All of PubMed? Are you new here?

  78. #78 T. Bruce McNeely
    December 7, 2010

    @Mephistopheles:

    Of course Augie objects to the concept of improvement.
    Does it look like he himself has ever improved in any way?

  79. #79 augustine
    December 7, 2010

    mephisto:

    @73 – So you object to the concept of improvement? You believe that once a treatment is adopted is should never be replaced by something safer and more effective?

    eh,eh,eh,eh. Remember what ORAC says. You have a higher standard than your woo enemies. You’re at a disadvantage. You can’t use strawman arguments. Then you’ll be just like me. A woo woo. Science blogger can’t be hypocrites, remember?

  80. #80 Composer99
    December 7, 2010

    The ugh troll is just here to raise hackles. His behaviour on this blog leads one to conclude that he is cut from the same kind of cloth of Robert O. Young: a thoroughly despicable member of homo sapiens.

    Although it is probably an exaggeration to suggest that the ugh troll has a calibre of cogitation worthy of being described as ‘sapient’.

  81. #81 JP
    December 7, 2010

    @77 Trepanation anyone?

  82. #82 Composer99
    December 7, 2010

    ugh troll @ 80:

    If you can’t tell the difference between serious claims/arguments on the one hand and mockery/ridicule/insults on the other, that’s not Mephistopheles’ problem.

    Actually, let me rephrase that:

    If you’re too abysmally stupid to tell the difference between serious claims/arguments on the one hand and richly deserved mockery/insults/ridicule on the other, that’s not Mephistopheles’ problem (or anyone else’s, for that matter).

    I know reading for comprehension isn’t your strong suit, so I figured I’d help clear things up.

  83. #83 Mephistopheles O'Brien
    December 7, 2010

    @80 – In what way did I use a straw man argument? You made a statement, I was attempting to clarify your meaning. As I read it, you seemed to imply that doing the best we currently know (based on actually examining the evidence), all the while suspecting that some day we might find some better approach, is in some way a bad approach to medicine.

    But I should have responded to

    We can just tell the dead. Sorry, that’s just how science works.

    With, “Yes” – except for the “sorry” part. Because frankly, while science is not a perfect process, it’s better at finding workable solutions than any other I’m currently aware of.

  84. #84 augustine
    December 7, 2010

    compost99

    The ugh troll is just here to raise hackles. His behaviour on this blog leads one to conclude that he is cut from the same kind of cloth of Robert O. Young: a thoroughly despicable member of homo sapiens.

    I guess I raised your hackles. My behavior fits right along with a typical snarky, rude, attacking, beligerent SBMer. You’re not attacking my behavior, otherwise you’d choose to correct some of your fellow SBMers. I mirror whatever poster I’m responding too. You should pay attention to your attitude. Remember the SECRET? You get back what you put in.

  85. #85 Militant Agnostic
    December 7, 2010

    @77 Trepanation anyone?

    I definitely would recommend it for Augie – preferably with an air chisel although maybe a rock bit might be required.

  86. #86 augustine
    December 7, 2010

    Militant atheist

    @77 Trepanation anyone?

    I definitely would recommend it for Augie – preferably with an air chisel although maybe a rock bit might be required.

    Let me play highly emotional skepchick elyse for a minute.

    ARe you threatening to kill me? Yes you are. And you are also threatening to rob my family of a father and husband. My kids will never get to have their father walk down the isle with them all because of you. Are you going to stick that chisel in an orifice. RAPE! RAPE! RAPE!

    When SBMer can’t intelligently argue then they resort to violence and RAPE!

  87. #87 Chris
    December 7, 2010

    Little Augie is on a roll tonight. This seems to upset him quite a bit (and he has tried to insult me by calling me a “mother” in one comment and “Christopher” in another, he is even getting kind of confused!).

    Whatever, it is still after his bed time.

    (by the way my full name is neither Christopher nor Christine)

  88. #88 anonone
    December 8, 2010

    Robert O. Young is the quack that Tony Robbins has been pushing. He did a Nightingale Conant set of recordings called “Living Health” with this criminal (yes, he has a record) a few years ago.

    It should have been called “Dying Sick.”

    Google Robert O Young and “Quackwatch” for the story.

  89. #89 augustine
    December 8, 2010

    {Google Robert O Young and “Quackwatch” for the story.}

    Quackwatch is a discredited website. Anyone who thinks it’s objective and worthy is a fool. Scienceblogs has made that site obsolete. It’s a dinosaur. If you’ve ever seen it’s owner in live action you’d understand why you’d take what he says with a grain of salt. I really wish he’d do more public appearances.

    Come to think of it you(sciencebloggers) should push for a live debate with one of your finest with someone like Mike Adams ( a nobody). It would be fun to see. Agreed?

  90. #90 NZ Sceptic
    December 8, 2010

    You’re very twisted Augustine. The theme of all these posts of Orac’s is sadness and frustration that this woman may have died unnecessarily – or at least sooner than she should have – and you’ve hijacked them all to express your uneducated disdain for science-based medicine in a crass and callous way, with no evidence to back any of your increasingly silly claims.

  91. #91 Chris
    December 8, 2010

    Please ignore Little Augie the troll.

  92. #92 Pareidolius
    December 8, 2010

    I mirror whatever poster I’m responding too.

    So you basically admit that you have no real stance other than to play the contrarian and revel in the scraps of attention you get.

  93. #93 johndivy
    December 8, 2010

    Let Oprah know that Augie is a troll.

  94. #94 Composer99
    December 8, 2010

    augustine’s trolling is pretty much just about this.

  95. #95 O'Really
    December 8, 2010

    How’s the war on cancer working out?
    http://cancercontrolplanet.cancer.gov/atlas/timeall.jsp?ac=1

    Data from NCI (breast cancer)
    http://corda.nci.nih.gov/?@_CPRQR_bEYk_Iaxw

    Data from NCI (all cancers)
    http://corda.nci.nih.gov/?@_CPRCT_bEYh_bKlR

  96. #96 Leroy
    December 8, 2010

    About Kim Tinkham, she lived four year with this treatment. I’ve got a friend that had breast cancer. She has done conventional along with the type of treatment Robert Young pushes. She became cancer-free for about a year. Now she’s fighting it again.

    I believe that nobody really knows what’s the best treatment for this disease.

    Your response, please.

  97. #97 ferp
    December 8, 2010

    “I believe that nobody really knows what’s the best treatment for this disease.”

    So, basically you’ve not bothered to read any of the information that’s been posted about cancer survival rates and Kim’s probably prognosis had she sought treatment? I mean, hey, who cares what he’s said, it’s not as if Orac is an oncologist or anything…

  98. #98 Chris
    December 8, 2010

    O’Really, two of your links don’t work, and one only goes to 1994. Here is some better info posted by Orac, and an an earlier post he linked a couple of days ago.

  99. #99 bigjohn756
    December 8, 2010

    This blog just happened to catch me in a mood to respond to Oprah. I sent the following message:

    “Oprah, you should be ashamed and disgusted by your suggestions regarding using The Secret as health care.
    Kim Tinkham died yesterday because of your encouragement that she was doing a good thing by relying on The Secret.
    My good friend and high-school buddy Carl died in August because he, too, delayed his cancer treatment and relied on the balderdash expounded in The Secret to cure himself. His colo-rectal cancer was curable when he was diagnosed, however he delayed his treatment for four months while he prayed to the magic “secret”. When, finally, he was in sufficient agony to force him to return to real medicine for solace, it was too late. His tumor had expanded all of the way to his spine and its removal required the removal of his rectum and anus as well. It was Stage IV cancer by then, too.
    Oprah, if you don’t disgust yourself that’s OK; your behavior disgusts me sufficiently for us both.”

    If it is read, which I doubt will happen, nothing will result. Oprium does not take criticism, Herself being perfect and all, you know.

  100. #100 stripey_cat
    December 8, 2010

    I honestly think Augie’s family /would/ be better off without him. If his opinions here truly reflect his real-life approach to people, he is one of the most evil, compassionless, immoral men it has ever been my misfortune to encounter. He truly seems to wish people would die, rather than challenge his belief system. There are very few ideologies worth choosing to die for. To wish for strangers to die to protect your own identity and self-worth is vile beyond my comprehension.

  101. #101 dedicated lurker
    December 8, 2010

    Denice – I read it in the store. I didn’t pay for it at all. I don’t pay for quackery either.

  102. #102 Concerned
    December 8, 2010

    First of all, it is obvious that you didn’t know Kim. She was a very intelligent, independent thinking woman. It’s ironic how you miss the boat completely here. This was all about choice, and Kim stated that very clearly in her appearance on Oprah. Although, I don’t necessarily agree with this “doctor’s” methods. Kim made a personal choice. Kim intelligently researched and weighed all of the pros and cons, before making her choice. It may not make a lot of sense, but, it was her choice and the way she chose to live her life, she died with dignity.

    Oprah is an entertainer, it’s funny how people forget that. But she has feelings and opinions too, she tried to encourage Kim to seek medical treatment. Oprah’s and Kim’s promotion and beliefs in The Secret, were personal. No one forced them to believe nor choose.

    Education and freedom of choice are a couple of the great blessings we’ve been given. It’s how we use them that often makes the difference between life and death.

    Respect one another and our freedom of choice in America. May my dear friend rest in peace, and may her death not be in vain. Let’s keep discussing and truely try to find a cure for this devastating disease of cancer that takes and impacts way too many beautiful lives.

    God Bless Us One and All.

  103. #103 Chris
    December 8, 2010

    So you are good with someone who “graduated” from a diploma mill pretending to be a medical doctor? So, Concerned, is freedom of choice valid if the guy selling stuff is a liar?

  104. #104 augustine
    December 8, 2010

    How’s the war on cancer working out?
    http://cancercontrolplanet.cancer.gov/atlas/timeall.jsp?ac=1

    Data from NCI (breast cancer)
    http://corda.nci.nih.gov/?@_CPRQR_bEYk_Iaxw

    Data from NCI (all cancers)
    http://corda.nci.nih.gov/?@_CPRCT_bEYh_bKlR

    There’s a delicate balance between we’re losing and we need more money to win and we’re winning we need more money to continue. This is the game of cancer/disease awareness.

    There’s a lot of wealth transfer going on. Just ask ORAC how much his grant is and then multiply.

  105. #105 щ(゚Д゚щ) (屮゚Д゚)屮
    December 8, 2010

    “Let’s keep discussing and truely [sic] try to find a cure for this devastating disease of cancer that takes and impacts way too many beautiful lives.”

    Wait, wait, wait – you care about finding a cure for cancer but you can’t be bothered to be even marginally worried that there are quacks who are selling fraudulent ‘medicine’ to people dying of cancer, which thus causes them to die instead of receiving a proper treatment medical science already has available that very likely would cure them? Hypocrite!

    “and may her death not be in vain.”

    There’s not much hope of that if her own friends are willing to let the quacks responsible for it get away with manslaughter instead of getting the word out.

  106. #106 mozuon
    December 9, 2010

    augustine,

    You say as much that SBM is in the business of keeping people sick. Why then do most people who get sick invest money in modern medical treatments in the hope of getting better?

    Is it possible that most people understand what getting a medical degree involves? And that SBM is self-correcting?

    In other words: Yes, Vioxx, Avandia, arsenic, and others are formerly used treatments. (There are also many formerly used treatments that were far less harmful but are simply less effective than the best treatments available today, but of course you saw no reason to mention those.) Generally, formerly used treatments were successful in some patients but later found to be harmful to others at a rate great enough not to justify their benefits, or a better treatment was discovered that replaced them. So they are not used anymore. It’s really not that complicated.

    Can the same be said for Robert O. Young’s pH treatments for cancer? Does he study the survival rates of his patients at 2, 3, 5, and 10 years, and compare them to the survival rates of like patients undergoing different science-based medical treatments? Would he stop using his treatment if found to be ineffective?

    That is the difference. SBM evolves; the therapies evolve. Quack treatments do not; they can not if they do not subject themselves to the scientific process.

    When a science-based medical treatment is found (almost always by a scientist in the SBM community) to be highly dangerous, it is immediately pulled. When a quack treatment is found to be highly dangerous, it is continued to be prescribed — with vigor and indignation.

    Ask yourself: Why is one side completely forthcoming with survival rates and data, while the other is completely silent?

  107. #107 Chris
    December 9, 2010

    mozuon, what part of ignore the troll do you fail to understand? Trolls actually tend to go away if they are starved. Stop feeding the troll.

  108. #108 Chris
    December 9, 2010

    Another question, “Concerned”… why would anyone take the word of someone who claims that lemon juice is not acidic? Are they that clueless? Are they that detached from reality to think that lemons are not acidic?

    Think about it. And after you thought about it for a while, come back and tell me why lemons are not acidic.

  109. #109 ferp
    December 9, 2010

    “Think about it. And after you thought about it for a while, come back and tell me why lemons are not acidic.”

    Chris – if you look through different websites alt-meddies run, they seem to explain how they get their ‘lemons are alkaline’ definition: apparently they don’t care about the pH of what it is you’re eating, but the pH of the ‘ash’ left behind after it’s burned (what this has to do with anything is beyond me, since the foods you eat have no real impact on your body’s pH, which is thankful since if it changes more than slightly from 7.4, you get violently ill and potentially die). It’s all quackery because the only thing food has a pH impact on really is your urine, and your urine’s pH has nothing to do with the rest of your body’s pH…

    [sources]

    http://www.quackwatch.org/11Ind/young3.html

    http://www.quackwatch.org/01QuackeryRelatedTopics/DSH/coral2.html

  110. #110 Shannon
    December 9, 2010

    Kim died Tuesday. Your prayer for her family are appreciated.
    It’s cancer, folks, and unless you’ve walked in those shoes and had to make those types of decisions, then none of you know what you would do. If the treatment kept her alive for any amount of time, then it worked. Oprah didn’t kill her and neither did any doctors, cancer did. Blame cancer, get active in fundraising for research, and DO SOMETHING ABOUT IT INSTEAD OF COMPLAIN!!

  111. #111 Orac
    December 9, 2010

    Well, yes and no. Cancer did indeed kill Kim. What causes the anger around here is that Kim didn’t have to die. By choosing Robert O. Young’s snake oil instead of effective science-based therapies including surgery, radiation, and chemotherapy, Kim unwittingly threw away her one best chance of beating her breast cancer in 2007. Oprah Winfrey inadvertently aided and abetted Young’s snake oil through her promotion of New Age nonsense like The Secret on her TV show. Unfortunately, Robert O. Young was there to take advantage of Kim’s normal fears and take who knows how much money from her for utterly ineffective, unscientific, snake oil treatments.

  112. #112 щ(゚Д゚щ) (屮゚Д゚)屮
    December 9, 2010

    “It’s cancer, folks, and unless you’ve walked in those shoes and had to make those types of decisions, then none of you know what you would do.”

    Er, actually most of us do. We would go with the best medical science that’s supported by hard data, and not go to a quack ‘doctor’ whose treatments are unscientific at best, and ouright fradulent at worst.

    “If the treatment kept her alive for any amount of time, then it worked.”

    No it doesn’t. This has been explained multiple times already – she got a bullshit treatment but happened to survive because she was lucky. Her cancer just took a while to kill her, but this doesn’t mean the treatment ‘worked’.

    “Oprah didn’t kill her and neither did any doctors, cancer did. Blame cancer, get active in fundraising for research, and DO SOMETHING ABOUT IT INSTEAD OF COMPLAIN!!”

    You’re half right – the guy who contributed to her death was a quack ‘doctor’.

    Allow me to restate this: you care about finding a cure for cancer but you can’t be bothered to be even marginally worried that there are quacks who are selling fraudulent ‘medicine’ to people dying of cancer, which thus causes them to die instead of receiving a proper treatment medical science already has available that very likely would cure them? And you have the audacity to complain we’re not doing anything to save lives? How deliciously hypocritical of you.

  113. #113 Ruth
    December 9, 2010

    I was saddened to hear on the news that Aretha Franklin has pancreatic cancer. I wish the Queen of Soul all the best.

  114. #114 Jan Sydnam
    December 9, 2010

    KIM TINKHAM was her own person and she made her OWN decisions!!! She was intelligent enough to have a drivers license and a card to vote as well as run a business. She was once elected as President of the South Wise Chamber of Commerce and founded several different groups…so…she’s far from being a “stupid” or “a gullible person”! She made a decision to do what she did in following a particular person’s advice. No one put a gun to her head! Her husband certainly would have stepped to the plate to say “STOP! Kim you’re not handling your cancer in the right way!” But he didn’t! He didn’t want her to die! YOU LIVE (or die)BY THE CHOICES YOU MAKE!!! Make wise choices!

  115. #115 Jan Sydnam
    December 9, 2010

    KIM TINKHAM was her own person and she made her OWN decisions!!! She was intelligent enough to have a drivers license and a card to vote as well as run a business. She was once elected as President of the South Wise Chamber of Commerce and founded several different groups…so…she’s far from being a “stupid” or “a gullible person”! She made a decision to do what she did in following a particular person’s advice. No one put a gun to her head! Her husband certainly would have stepped to the plate to say “STOP! Kim you’re not handling your cancer in the right way!” But he didn’t! He didn’t want her to die! YOU LIVE (or die)BY THE CHOICES YOU MAKE!!! Make wise choices!

  116. #116 ferp
    December 9, 2010

    “Her husband certainly would have stepped to the plate to say “STOP! Kim you’re not handling your cancer in the right way!” But he didn’t! He didn’t want her to die!”

    Read through the reports of victims of quackery on the following page; there’s a number of cancer victims (not to mention victims of other quackery) whose family members talk about how they begged and pleaded with their loved ones to seek proper medical treatment:

    http://www.quackwatch.org/01QuackeryRelatedTopics/Victims/victims.html

    We have plenty of evidence that just because one’s husband or wife tells a victim of quackery something like “you really should see a real doctor”, even to the point of begging, doesn’t necessarily mean that they will, so your claim that Kim’s husband would have said something if the treatment really were quackery is bullshit I’m afraid. He could very well have argued with her about it to no avail for all we know. It makes no difference.

    Please stop defending this as a ‘wise choice’. Kim was taken in by a medical fraudster as lots of people are when they are desperate and afflicted with a life-threatening illness; there is no shame in admitting it. However, painting this as a legitimate ‘choice’ is only serving to defend the quack doctor who helped send her to an early grave.

  117. #117 Chris
    December 9, 2010

    Jan Sydnam:

    Make wise choices!

    First thing: check to make sure the “doctor” is real and did not just buy a diploma from diploma mill.

    And run away very very fast if he/she tells you that lemons are alkaline!

  118. #118 Chris
    December 9, 2010

    ferp, here is a another list:
    http://whatstheharm.net/naturopathy.html

    Ms. Tinkham may be added to the list.

  119. #119 Militant Agnostic
    December 9, 2010

    Numerous commenters (most of them much less unhinged that Jan Syndam) have described how intelligent Kim Tinkham was. Intelligent people get conned all the time. Many if not most of the people who invested with Bernie Madoff were intelligent. In fact, high intelligence can be a liability when it comes to admitting you made a bad choice. The more intelligent a person is, the better they can rationalize a bad decision.

    What Kim Tinkham lacked was the knowledge to evaluate claims. Most of the people who comment here have the basic scientific knowledge to tell that Robert Young is making claims (magnesium tuns into iron in the body, bacteria turn into blood cells etc.) that are just plain wrong. We also have the “practical” knowledge to know that someone calling themselves doctor may not have any real qualifications whatsoever. What Oprah encourages is ignoring science and critical thinking and instead listening whoever tells you want you want to hear instead of someone who tells you what you need to know.

    Robert Young exploited Kim Tinkham and then threw her under the bus when she became a liability to him. If her friends want to honor her memory they should try and get him put out of business.

  120. #120 Calli Arcale
    December 9, 2010

    Jan Syndam:

    Her husband certainly would have stepped to the plate to say “STOP! Kim you’re not handling your cancer in the right way!” But he didn’t! He didn’t want her to die! YOU LIVE (or die)BY THE CHOICES YOU MAKE!!! Make wise choices!

    Several folks have already pointed out that he may well have done so. I also have to point out that yes, Tinkham was smart, and her husband probably is too. That’s no guarantee of being able to spot a scam. If she couldn’t recognize that the treatment wasn’t working, why is it unimaginable that he couldn’t recognize it either? That also has happened before.

    The world lost a bright light in Kim Tinkham. The more I read about her, the more I realize that. I don’t condemn her for making the choice she made. I condemn Young for deceiving her into making it.

  121. #121 David N. Brown
    December 10, 2010

    An example which, in many ways, I find even more despicable is that Oprah gave airtime to the guy (don’t recall the name off hand) who killed customers in his Sedona sweatlodge. I regard it as an outrageous disrespect to the AZ environment and native culture, angles which even Oprah’s viewership ought to have been able to appreciate.

  122. #122 Chris
    December 10, 2010

    Mr. Brown, that was all part of “The Secret” cult. You are not the only one who is outraged.

  123. #123 Sincerely
    December 10, 2010

    Tell your readers: OPRAH MADE HER DO IT

    I am fascinated by your take on this.

    It is interesting that from your perspective, it is Young and Oprah that are to blame here.

    From my perspective, it seems that there are many many people claiming to be and people that are subject matter experts, whose job it is to bring you awareness about alternative choices. Louise Hay claims to have cured herself of Cancer by simply changing her thoughts and releasing resentment. What if Kim had been captured by this idea instead? It, resonating with Kim so powerfully that she became convinced that changing her thought process alone would deliver the desired results .. and it doesn’t?

    I take from your description that you would probably blame Louise. What if it were a different SME that resonated with Kim and that person said X and Kim saw it on Television and so then Kim ends up in a life or death situation?

    Woop. Switch courses. From your posting it appears you would chase that very expert (or so called expert), right down the street; angrily pointing your finger and judging them guility of death.

    What about the person doing the choosing?

    What if instead of choosing to believe what she saw on TV, Kim had chosen to believe that she was a driver in her own health care and launched the biggest research effort of her life? What if Kim chose to believe that this – was simply, her time?

    What if Kim had made a different choice?

    See, I think that what we are suffering from today is that we are soo far removed and disconnected from ourselves and from reality that we have chosen to outsource our thinking, our learning and ultimately, our personal growth. Which leads to situations like your article, where someone else is to blame for our choices.

    Maybe the people doing the blaming (also a sign of resentment) have not yet figured out that blame is a gauge of the condition of our own mental health. Hopefullly, they’ll catch it before they get cancer..

  124. #124 Chris
    December 10, 2010

    Sincerely:

    Maybe the people doing the blaming (also a sign of resentment) have not yet figured out that blame is a gauge of the condition of our own mental health. Hopefullly, they’ll catch it before they get cancer..

    I recognize the words, but the order they have been put in does not seem to make sense. So are we to just let Robert Young off the hook because Ms. Tinkham made the choice?

  125. #125 Scott
    December 10, 2010

    Given that Young LIED to Ms. Tinkham, and by doing so defrauded her out of years of life, YES. He’s far more to blame than she.

    A charming con artist is a very insidious foe whom few can resist.

  126. #126 T. Bruce McNeely
    December 10, 2010

    Sincerely:

    By your logic, Bernie Madoff should be a free man.

  127. #127 magicJay
    December 10, 2010

    Took me a couple days to have the time but I wrote a letter. It’s a bit longer than the 2000 character limit for Oprah’s contact page so I sent a bit with a link to the rest.

    If anyone cares you can read it here.

  128. #128 =_=
    December 10, 2010

    I wonder if the reason Kim’s personal friends appear to be complete morons is because they’re the only ones left and she alienated all her sane friends by her decision to go around essentially marketing for this quack? It’s so heartwarming to see them defending the people who literally scammed her to death. I wouldn’t wish ‘friends’ like you on anyone.

  129. #129 Sincerely
    December 10, 2010

    “All blame is a waste of time. No matter how much fault you find with another, and regardless of how much you blame him, it will not change you.” -WD

  130. #130 Chris
    December 10, 2010

    So let us not tell anyone else that Robert Young is an unqualified clueless quack who lied to Ms. Tinkham!

  131. #131 T. Bruce McNeely
    December 10, 2010

    “All blame is a waste of time. No matter how much fault you find with another, and regardless of how much you blame him, it will not change you.” -WD

    Hey, guess what? It’s not all about “you”.
    It’s about putting someone like Young out of business (and hopefully into prison) so he won’t dupe any other desperate people to their death. That’s a very productive use of time, I’d say.

  132. #132 ferp
    December 11, 2010

    Sincerely, you’re a genius! It all makes sense now: pedophile priests abusing children aren’t to blame; it’s the children made a choice to go to church, so it’s unfair of us to blame the priests because all blame is a waste of time.

    We can’t blame a rapist if he brutally kills a girl; she made the choice to dress in that skirt and walk down that alley all alone, and all blame is a waste of time.

    We can’t blame Timothy McVeigh for bombing a building which killed 168 people and injured 450; it was their choice to be in the building at the time, and all blame is a waste of time.

    It’s not my fault if I sell something that claims to cure cancer that’s actually rat feces I mixed with cyanide and put into little pill caplets; it’s the choice of the people! If they want to buy my rat shit pills, hey, I can’t be held accountable if anything happens, because we need to respect their choices, and all blame is a waste of time.

    And of course by ‘genius’, I mean you’re a complete fucking moron. Comparing your intelligence to a rock would make the rock look like a fucking Rhodes scholar. The thought that someone like you is wasting the planet’s oxygen with your utterly, inexcusably stupid nonsense makes me physically ill. Please go fuck yourself.

    Oh, and don’t blame me if you think I’m being mean. After all, “all blame is a waste of time”, right?

  133. #133 Calli Arcale
    December 13, 2010

    I wouldn’t say Sincerely is completely without a point. It’s true that, measured in terms of giving you peace, finding fault with another doesn’t usually help. And that’s probably the context in which the quote was originally meant. It’s a bit like Ann Landers’ expression “Hanging onto resentment is like letting someone you despise live rent-free in your head.” Forgiveness can be healing for the forgiver, totally apart from what the guilty party does, because it allows you to let go of it. Assuming your successful at forgiving; it’s not an easy thing to do.

    But that’s a narrow context. In the larger context, assigning fault (not necessarily blame) is important for preventing a recurrence. If an airplane falls out of the sky, it is very useful to analyze the wreckage and flight data to work out why it fell out of the sky. Then you can inspect the rest of the fleet for similar faults, and repair them before those planes suffer the same fate.

    And it’s true with people too. If someone is running around defrauding people out of their life savings, determining in a court of law that they have been doing this can lead to their incarceration and the end of their scam. There isn’t always a remedy in criminal court, though; someone like Young, the best we can hope to do in the near term is to try to warn people about him so they know what they’re getting into — because it’s not like he’s gonna tell them.

  134. #134 DW
    December 13, 2010

    @ Calli : Paradoxically, it seems that in 2010 those who *call out* the woo-meisters ( Barrett, Lee Phillips, MD/ med student writing contra HIV/AIDS denialist “journalism”) are being dragged to court for defamation/ interfering with business, etc. Cases involving Phillips were dismissed, the others continue AFAIK.

  135. I just submitted a comment. Let’s flood Oprah with demands to support evidence over wishful thinking.

    https://www.oprah.com/ownshow/plug_form.html?plug_id=215

  136. #136 Connie Holubar
    December 16, 2010

    I knew Kim and worked with her on one of her magazines as recently as a few weeks ago. I also read her book, Cancer Angel, as she was writing it, and believe me, Kim was not a gullible person, nor a stupid person. She researched and studied, and she made her choices for herself.

    How many people do you know who have parts cut off, spend tens of thousands on painful treatments, and die of cancer anyway? MOST DO. There is a reason doctor’s “Practice” medicine. Everyone who gets cancer and goes through treatment is “practiced” on. It’s not Oprah’s fault. It’s not Dr. Young’s fault. It is no one’s fault.

    Everyone makes their own decisions about how to deal with disease. Kim made hers, and I respect her choices. What I read in her book about the alkiline diet made a lot more sense than filling your body with poison at thousands of dollars a crack does. As far as I know, she stuck by her decision and never waivered until the end. Rest in peace, Kim. My heart aches for her husband Scott and her son. She was a beautiful, intelligent person, and she will be missed by so very, very many.

  137. #137 Chris
    December 16, 2010

    Connie Holubar:

    There is a reason doctor’s “Practice” medicine. Everyone who gets cancer and goes through treatment is “practiced” on. It’s not Oprah’s fault. It’s not Dr. Young’s fault. It is no one’s fault.

    What makes you think Robert Young is a doctor? He bought his “degree” from a mail order diploma mill. How much research does it take that to learn that Clayton College is not accredited? Even before she was diagnosed it was the subject of several articles for the quacks it produced (look at the list of references in the linked wiki article). That includes Hulda Clark who claimed cancer was from an animal found in a small part of the world, and she had the cure for all diseases. Only a desperate person would not see that as a warning sign. Did Ms. Tinkham ever hear of the phrase: “If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is!”?

    Wouldn’t there have been a clue that Robert Young had a tenuous grasp of reality when he claims lemons are not acidic?

    Don’t you get it: he is a con artist and he duped your friend, and that lead to her death. Yes, it is his fault.

  138. #138 ㅜ_ㅜ
    December 18, 2010

    “I also read her book, Cancer Angel, as she was writing it, and believe me, Kim was not a gullible person, nor a stupid person.”

    Except you can read excerpts from the book on her CancerAngel website blog link, and they’re all inane or badly written ramblings from a woman who was very obviously not thinking critically when she wrote it. Congratulations: you have no taste in literature.

    “How many people do you know who have parts cut off, spend tens of thousands on painful treatments, and die of cancer anyway? MOST DO.”

    If only I could line up hundreds of breast cancer survivors to slap some sense into you one by one.

    “Everyone who gets cancer and goes through treatment is “practiced” on. It’s not Oprah’s fault. It’s not Dr. Young’s fault. It is no one’s fault.”

    Is there some competition between Kim’s friends to see who can write the most idiotic remark in regards to her death?

    “Everyone makes their own decisions about how to deal with disease. Kim made hers, and I respect her choices.”

    You respect the decision to throw her money away (not to mention her life) instead of, at the very least, spending it on a luxurious vacation or something? Are you insane?

    “What I read in her book about the alkiline diet made a lot more sense than filling your body with poison at thousands of dollars a crack does.”

    I suspect what passes for ‘reading’ in your mind is actually illiteracy, judging by the fact that you can’t even spell ‘alkaline’ properly, and that you think any of the nonsense in Young’s insane writings make sense. “A crack does”? What does this even mean?

    Have you even been tested for literacy – specifically reading comprehension?

    “She was a beautiful, intelligent person, and she will be missed by so very, very many.”

    I’m sorry; what does beauty or intelligence have to do with the fact that she was scammed by a quack to death? Her beauty is quite irrelevant when it comes this issue. The only reason her beauty would even matter now is if you’re a necrophile.

    Could Kim’s friends please stop adding to the growing pile of evidence that her friends (at least the vocal ones) are terminally stupid?

  139. #139 Militant Agnostic
    December 18, 2010

    Wouldn’t there have been a clue that Robert Young had a tenuous grasp of reality when he claims lemons are not acidic?

    I would think his claims that the body transmutes elements would be an even bigger clue.

    @ㅜ_ㅜ – “a crack” is slang for per occurrence/item/time etc.

    As for Kim Tinkham not being gullible, what part of “She gave money to charlatan and wasted money on a treatment that was ludicrous to anyone with a rudimentary knowledge of basic chemistry, physics or biology” don’t you understand?

    As for intelligence, it can be a liability when a person is conned. Psychological research has shown that intelligent people are better at rationalizing away evidence that contradicts their beliefs.

    http://skepticmedia.org/rsaudio/rs19.mp3

    http://skepticmedia.org/rsaudio/rs23.mp3

  140. #140 Thomas
    April 11, 2011

    We should not be so quick to point the finger here without knowing more. People die from cancer all the time, no matter what treatment method they try. Conventional treatments don’t have much better success rates than the best alternative treatments. It’s everyone’s right to choose how they want to treat their disease. If you research Dr. Young’s history, he has a lot of success stories of helping people who weren’t helped by conventional medicine, but of course we should remember that no treatment will work 100% of the time. After all, sometimes it’s a person’s time to go. God Bless.

  141. #141 Narad
    April 11, 2011

    If you research Dr. Young’s history, he has a lot of success stories of helping people who weren’t helped by conventional medicine, but of course we should remember that no treatment will work 100% of the time. After all, sometimes it’s a person’s time to go. God Bless.

    Go fuck yourself in the eye with a stick.

  142. #142 David N. Andrews M. Ed., C. P. S. E.
    April 11, 2011

    “Conventional treatments don’t have much better success rates than the best alternative treatments.”

    Incorrect. Orac would know better than I do but I’d venture to say that your claim is bullshit.

    “It’s everyone’s right to choose how they want to treat their disease.”

    It is also their right to get proper treatment, not fucking bullshit. From a proper medical practitioner. Not from a twat.

    “If you research Dr. Young’s history, he has a lot of success stories of helping people who weren’t helped by conventional medicine, but of course we should remember that no treatment will work 100% of the time.”

    No. He’s had people tell positive stories. But no hard evidence for his ‘therapies’ working. ‘Dr.’ my fucking arse. He went to an unaccredited diploma mill for his ‘degree’, and that in itself is a clue to the fact that he was not exactly material for a medical career!

  143. #143 Beamup
    April 11, 2011

    Conventional treatments don’t have much better success rates than the best alternative treatments.

    Citation needed.

    It’s everyone’s right to choose how they want to treat their disease.

    It’s also everyone’s right to not have a quack lie to them, steal their money, and ensure they die more quickly and in greater pain than necessary.

    If you research Dr. Young’s history, he has a lot of success stories of helping people who weren’t helped by conventional medicine

    Because he doesn’t bother to promote the stories of the people he kills. Or even do the proper research to demonstrate that he’s anything other than a quack.

    but of course we should remember that no treatment will work 100% of the time.

    Doesn’t mean that we should be promoting treatments that work 0% of the time.

  144. #144 Chris
    April 11, 2011

    Thomas:

    If you research Dr. Young’s history,

    And do it honestly you will learn his “doctorate” is from a mail order diploma mill. His proper title is “Mister.” Try to keep that straight.

    Look a little further and you will learn he knows nothing about basic chemistry, even cooking chemistry. Lemons are acidic, a characteristic that make them useful for dressings, seviche and keeping fruits from turning brown. They are not “alkaline.”

  145. #145 Jeri Burker
    April 11, 2011

    Another victim of quack ? You’ve got to be kidding . What about the thousand that have died from chemo ?? You really need to do your research before you spout off about quackery. Even oncologists won’t give chemo to their own families. Feel free to visit my cancer page for a ton of resources that may enlighten you a little.
    https://www.facebook.com/pages/Hard-core-nutrition-for-the-prevention-of-cancer/126148317410353

  146. #146 Beamup
    April 11, 2011

    Another victim of quack ? You’ve got to be kidding . What about the thousand that have died from chemo ??

    Completely irrelevant unless you can show all of (a) chemo provides less benefit than the harm produced, (b) Young’s methods provide a benefit, (c) said benefit is greater than the harm produced.

    Even oncologists won’t give chemo to their own families.

    Citation needed.

    All citations should be to peer-reviewed journals indexed in Pubmed. Facebook references just get you laughed at.

  147. #147 Chris
    April 11, 2011

    Jeri Burker, feel free to read this book. It is not a PubMed reference, but they are included. It gives you a balanced background of the history of cancer treatment.

  148. #148 novalox
    April 11, 2011

    @jeri

    What a joke of a page. And what a joke of a reference.

    If your goal was to make yourself look like a fool, consider it mission accomplished.

  149. #149 Ian Jacklin
    April 11, 2011

    It’s articles like this that will result in the torture and murder of so many people that were on the fence as to whether alternative medicine or Western medicine should be chose to treat their cancer. Who ever wrote this should be ashamed to be the catalyst for so many deaths! Chemo has a 3% success rate. The placebo effect is much more effective than this itself! Just cause in this one incident the patient that chose alternative didn’t fair well doesn’t mean this would be the case for everyone.

    After reserching this for over a decade for my film “icurecancer.com” it is obvious that ever since Rockefeller and Carnagie bought out the medicical schools in the early 1900′s and ousted the holistic methods that worked for their pharmaceuticals that not only don’t but hurt you more our medical system is corrupt and doesn’t work.

    Anyone stupid enough to allow themselves to be treated with western medicine when it comes to cancer with out at least looking past this moron’s article deserves what they get.

  150. #150 Militant Agnostic
    April 11, 2011

    Chemo has a 3% success rate.

    Citation needed. In my experience this statistic is achieved by excluding all cancers for which chemo works well (Hodgkins Lymphoma, Childhood Leukemia etc.) as well as other statistical jiggery pokery if not outright lying.

  151. #151 Chris
    April 11, 2011

    Ian Jacklin has a webpage titled “Icurecancer.” Let us look at his qualifications: “Ian Jacklin is documentary filmmaker, concert promoter, actor and kickboxing champion.”

    Hmmm, and Mr. Jacklin, how exactly are you more qualified than the surgical oncologist with an MD and PhD? You know, the one that runs this blog (see upper left hand corner, under the words “Who (or what) is Orac?”).

  152. #152 Beamup
    April 11, 2011

    ousted the holistic methods that worked

    Citation needed for this too. Peer-reviewed Pubmed-indexed journals only.

  153. #153 Militant Agnostic
    April 11, 2011

    Methinks Ian Jacklin got kicked in the head once (or more than once) too often.

  154. #154 Calli Arcale
    April 11, 2011

    Jeri Burker:

    “Even oncologists won’t give chemo to their own families.”

    Interesting claim to put on a blog run by an oncologist. I have lots of doctors in my family. One of them recently died of what was probably cancer. He had declined to treat it or even get it diagnosed because a) the symptoms looked to him like pancreatic cancer which is nearly always fatal anyway and b) he was over 90 and felt that he’d had a good life and was ready to go. My surgeon uncle, meanwhile, was quite happy to let his wife get chemo for her ovarian cancer. She ended up surviving 14 years! Quite a remarkable outcome.

    So…. Citation needed, methinks.

    Ian Jacklin:
    “Anyone stupid enough to allow themselves to be treated with western medicine when it comes to cancer with out at least looking past this moron’s article deserves what they get.”

    Well, yeah, but that’s true of your post too. You should decide based on talking to actual experts familiar with your particular case, not by reading what some random stranger trying to promote a movie says.

  155. #155 RC
    April 11, 2011

    God gave each and every one of us the gift of FREE WILL, when you point the finger of blame there are 4 more pointing right back at you! There are NEVER any guarantee’s in either modality, I saw several of my relatives do everything the white coats advised, chemo, radiation, pills, surgery and they left this planet in unbearable pain and suffering this was her choice. There are many healings on both sides of the fence it is up to us to choose that which resonates with our soul the most. I would never choose surgery chemo or radiation. I was told to have liver and kidney transplants and I chose to cleanse my body and use chinese medicinal herbs instead, my organs are regenerating they never needed to be removed…..MY CHOICE…. so deal and might I suggest you work on your need to control and anger issues as those emotions are both fear based and = illness. Nobody gets out of this game called life alive but it is up to us how we go out as in this case, I’m sure she had much better quality of life than with chemo, surgery, radiaton.

  156. #156 Chris
    April 11, 2011

    So what site was this article posted on that prompted this attack of the brain free zombies?

  157. #157 Beamup
    April 11, 2011

    There are NEVER any guarantee’s in either modality

    Guarantees? No. High levels of confidence that (a) if the woo appears to have worked, it was no more than luck and (b) the real medicine gives you much better odds? Absolutely.

  158. #158 Chris
    April 11, 2011

    Just another guy who beat Stage 3 Colon Cancer without chemo or radiation crashing this party!
    There is no magic potion.
    I did every alternative therapy I could find and my body healed itself.
    One thing I know for certain. This “brain free zombie” is ALIVE!
    7 years and counting.

    Life’s too short to argue with trolls.
    I’m only interested in helping people who want it.

    (((c)))

  159. #159 Chris
    April 11, 2011

    Chris:

    Just another guy who beat Stage 3 Colon Cancer without chemo or radiation crashing this party!

    Post the PubMed link to your case study.

  160. #160 Chris
    April 11, 2011

    Chris W, you had surgery. That is a known conventional treatment for cancer. Your anecdote is useless.

  161. #161 Calli Arcale
    April 11, 2011

    RC — you’re right that there are no guarantees, and that we all have free will to decide how much suffering we are willing to endure for how much gain.

    But just because there are no guarantees doesn’t mean you need to give up on deciding and just pick whatever sounds interesting. There’s actual data you can use, if you’re interested in doing a little work. You can make an *informed* choice, not just “well, Chinese medicine is fashionable and they don’t tell me about their failures, so I think I’ll do that”.

    My paternal grandfather is a case I like to talk about, because I know he’d appreciate it being shared. He died last year, of what he believed to be pancreatic cancer. He never got it diagnosed, and was going off of what he knew about cancer as a general surgeon. (Less than an oncologist, but quite a bit more than Joe Schmoe.) The symptoms were consistent. He was over ninety, knew quite well that pancreatic cancer has a very poor outlook even with treatment, and so he declined to even get diagnosed. He elected to go into hospice instead of receiving treatment. He ended up hanging on much longer than expected, undergoing a brief rally before an unfortunate fall outdoors in December led to hypothermia (he lived in Montana). He lasted just a few weeks after that. By his last week, his only sustenance was water, liquid morphine, Dos Equis, and the occasional high ball. He died at home, with dignity, and I greatly respect his decision.

    That’s an example of making an informed choice not to pursue chemotherapy (or, indeed, any treatment besides palliation). The story of my aunt is quite different. She was much younger when she was diagnosed with ovarian cancer. She had three children, and easily made the decision to pursue chemotherapy. It wasn’t easy, but she did better than the odds said she would, and lived fourteen years, long enough to see all of her children married and even meet some of her grandchildren.

    Bottom line: everybody has to make their own decision when it comes to cancer treatment, but you deserve to get truthful information with which to make it. A lot of people end up making the decision based on falsehoods, like the impossible promises of some quacks that a complete remission is likely from their improbable regimen. All that ends up happening in too many cases is that they try the “conservative” approach and then, by the time they give up, it’s too late for the conventional approach to do more than buy time. That’s not how anyone should have to go.

  162. #162 T. Bruce McNeely
    April 11, 2011

    I was told to have liver and kidney transplants and I chose to cleanse my body and use chinese medicinal herbs instead, my organs are regenerating they never needed to be removed.

    I find this very hard to believe. What was your diagnosis?

  163. #163 Chris
    April 11, 2011

    It would be prudent to read about Penelope Dingle. Here is the description of her husband:

    Dr Dingle, is an Associate Professor at Murdoch University and a part-time speaker who has written books and regularly gave talks and presentations on health and wellness. In particular it appeared that Dr Dingle regularly gave presentations in respect of what was described as the “Dingle Deal” in which the “Deal” stood for diet, environment, attitude and lifestyle.

    I am not going to provide an spoilers, you will have to read on how well Ms. Dingle did with that kind of expertize at her side.

  164. #164 RC
    April 12, 2011

    @Beamup&Callie~I would take Chinese Medicine and I HAVE! Along with six months in Brazil with Medium Joao (and I have) over your supposed real medicine anyday. I’m alive! I’m healthy! My organs are regenerating instead of someone elses organs insid of me that can reject at any time on any day. I don’t find it necessary to label or judge you. Judge and ye shall be judges. One mans “woo” is another mans Infinite transformation! Been there lived it, I walk the walk and talk the talk. I wish you well on your journey. 90% of my doctor of chinese herbal medicines clientele is……drum roll…..DOCTORS!!!! They all take herbs but prescribe poison which should be outlawed! Not everyone suffers. All of my realives did at the hands of the cancer docs in the white coats and I vowed should it happen to me I would never go that route and I didn’t and I’m still here happy, healthy. How can a TOXIC poison like chemo, radiation, Lupron heal the body? think about it. I’d rather cleanse, have 30g of concentrated organic greens daily, drink alkaline water, do yoga, use my rebounder, meditate (how can listening to God be labeled woo?) when decieving the american public with toxic chemicals in our foods (natural ingredients another way to hide up to 300 chemicals and it’s legal folks) and medicines. I was pumped up with lupron, your real medicine by a white coat that should be in jail which gave me cancer blew out my kidneys, liver, adrenals, thyroid, gave me a myriad of of life threatening side effects. I walked through fire for 7 years with your white coats and real medicine and the only thing that has healed my body is chinese medicine and 30 g of greens, detox baths…you know why? because YOUR REAL MEDICINE was loaded with toxic heavy metals. they remove lead from paint but pump it into human beings and it’s legal. legalized crime! I was loaded with lead, arsenic, mercury, nickel, cadmium you name it my levels were off the charts from your real medicine. thousands of complaints to the FDA since the 80′s and everyone turns a deaf ear, why? because they don’t make any $ off of greens and herbs and cleansing your body and holistic medicine that’s why. if we are healthy they don’t drive around in a benz. Greed is ruining this country and you really need to pull your head out of your arse before it bites you where the sun doesn’t shine. I lived through it, I am one of the lucky ones, millions have died or become disabled http://www.lupronvictimshub.com 1 reporter darcy spears in NV is shedding light on this crime against humanity she will be doing another series in May. Since the 80′s they have known and they have done nothing to help anyone why? because they want to harvest embryo’s for stem cell research that’s why and make more $$ more greed, who cares if millions have died or how many lives they have destroyed so don’t tell me about real medicine I’ve walked through the fire became financially devestated and had I discoverd these chinese formula’s 7 years ago would not have been in finacial or physical ruin I would have reclaimed my health that much sooner. You should really know what you are talking about b4 you open your mouths. I DO! That said, I wish you well,, I wish you peace and I wish you good health that you should not have to succumb to your toxic real medicine but should you be poisoned by that corrupted industry feel free to email me I have the name of a super healer and practitioner of chinese medicine which had been around much longer than allopathic real medicine LOL and yes, he would heal even a misinformed ignoramus’ such as the 2 of you. God bless and I will pray you don’t succumb to your own poison. for those who believe now words are necessary just as none are possible for those yet to fully awaken to the truth! I did make an informed choice and I did do my research who are you to imply or speak as if you even know me or what I did in order to select my doctor of chinese medicine, fashionable? you don’t even sound normal? LOL

  165. #165 Calli Arcale
    April 12, 2011

    RC,

    You can do what you like with your body; I never said you couldn’t. You have a right to informed consent — you also have the right to not seek information other than what you choose to believe. People can try to heal themselves with positive thinking alone, if they like.

    But that doesn’t mean I believe what you’re telling me. I have never seen anything which would lead me to believe that people can regrow their own organs (with a few very specific exceptions) no matter what they took; you can say that your organs regrew, but words are cheap, and this is the Internet. It doesn’t matter, anyway; I’m more interested in typical results than exotic million-to-one chances. (This is why I prefer working to playing the lottery.)

    Chemotherapy is poison, this is true. That’s actually sort of the point — find something more poisonous to the tumor than to the rest of the body and kill that sucker off. Sometimes it’s not too bad; I know a gal who maintained a reasonably active lifestyle while using chemo for her breast cancer. I also know another gal who was bedridden for months — it all depends, and only you can decide how much you are willing to risk and how much you are willing to suffer for how much chance of how much gain.

    It’s interesting that you mention Lupron, though. This blog has done several exposes on some particularly despicable people who, like you, believe scientific evidence is for other people. Ironically, they’re big fans of Lupron, and the manufacturer of Lupron is, in my opinion, complicit for allowing their product to be sold offlabel in substantial quantities (exceeding doses used in many cancer treatments) for this unethical and unscientific therapy. They’re the Geiers, a father-and-son team who inject Lupron into vulnerable preteen children with autism. They bill it as treatment of precocious puberty (which probably makes them guilty of insurance fraud as well), but their theory is that mercury from various sources causes autism, but cannot be chelated out because testosterone somehow binds to it (which is something they pretty much made up), so they use Lupron to shut down testosterone production. The big irony is that their patients do not even have mercury poisoning to begin with, yet thanks to these two “doctors”, they face substantial risks to their health from the use of dangerous pharmaceuticals.

    You are correct that there is corruption in the medical industry. The Geiers are examples of it, and the difficulty of getting them stopped shows the sad limitations of the current regulatory environment. But never think that this corruption is limited to however you define “allopathic real medicine”. It exists everywhere that there is the potential for saving money by cutting corners or lying to people.

    By the way, getting back to the actual content of this thread, Kim Tinkham wasn’t using TCM. She was using another unscientific theory of disease, in this case Robert Young’s “acid-base” woo, in combination with the power of positive thinking (more specifically, “The Secret”). If you really think TCM works for cancer, you should be every bit as outraged as the rest of us that Tinkham had to die because Young misled her.

  166. #166 Dave Ruddell
    April 12, 2011

    his only sustenance was water, liquid morphine, Dos Equis,

    He’s The Most Interesting Man in the World! Except in his case, it sounded like it might be true.

  167. #167 Calli Arcale
    April 12, 2011

    He was a pretty cool guy, that’s for sure. ;-) Taught me a lot, but like most of the lessons we learn from our relatives, I didn’t realize most of the things he was teaching until many years later.

  168. #168 RC
    April 12, 2011

    I went to hell and back this past 7 years from greedy whores who place profit before humanity but I am one of the lucky ones as millions have died.

    your liver can regenerate up to 1/3. This is common in chinese medicine or organs to regenerate. first to remove the toxins while adding proper nutrition and herbs and then the tissues regerate. it’s simply a fact whether you choose to believe it or not. Everything my dr. does has been studied at great length in hospitals in china, millions of americans go to china, india, etc for treatment due to our failing toxic “managed sick care” healthcare system and by his patients who submit their labs and tests to him. People who have been written off by the very same jerks that poisoned them with thier chemical cocktails to begin with. I’m not here to convince anyone but I sure as hell am not going to be called a liar for speaking my truth either or not speak out after being labeled by someone who knows absolutely nothing about me or anyone else that has chosen another path other than a chemically laced one as doing what is “fashionable” simply ludicrous and unconscionable

    I am doing all that i can to help the atty’s going after Lupron get it off the market especially because they are giving it to children as if giving it to any human being isn’t bad enough as are many via http://www.lupronvictimshub.com and lupron victims page on facebook.

    I don’t think it, I know it, I’m proof that TCM works for cancer because the Lupron acidified my body to the point of early stage cancer which i no longer have and I have used concepts from several books which emphasize healing with whole foods, prayer, meditation, emotional release and TCM and my health has greatly improved since doing so.

    Lupron as a cancer drug…. if it wasn’t killing people and ruining lives I’d laugh but it causes cancer….it’s loaded with poison and labeled as a reproductive toxicant they injected me with 9 ampules twice daily numerous times, they poisoned me with their real medicine. I wanted a baby not a death sentence however, at the time it wasn’t labeled that way they told me that I might have temporary menopausal symptoms not 7 years of seizures, joint pain, vision and memory loss, kidney and liver failure, endocrine shut down, no thyroid function, elevated cholesterol and glucose, skin bleeding out of the blue, cysts all over my body, floaters, full body edema, early stage cancer, shall I continue? unfortunately, I can and medical bills that the insurance wouldn’t cover upwards of 250,000 which sent my hubby overseas to keep a roof over our heads and avoid bankruptcy so the past 2 years alone in a house in a new state sick while hubby does what he can to save us from going under….I was in a cocoon for years until TCM and cleansing and only in the past year and a half have shown tremendous amount of improvement and weightloss. before lupron I weighted 125lbs and was an active vital woman after lupron I weighed 240lbs and could barely spell name due to extreme mental confusion, anxiety and oh yes I did get the menopausal symptoms only they weren’t temporary and they weren’t the only symptoms. I couldnt do a load of laundry or empty a dishwasher after lupron and many days crawled on my hands and knees from severe kidney and chest pains…. I’ve been to hell and back so please don’t patronize me or anyone else who is turned off by real medicine we know what we are talking about because we lived it.
    would I choose robert young strictly for cancer? nope. I would adhere to some of the principals in his book and also paul pitchfords healing with whole foods and the body ecology diet as my nutritional intake, connecting to divine energies which I do not call woo woo it’s a shame you feel the need to label and defame how some people choose to connect to the divine simply because it is not your way as we are all created by the creator and there is only 1 God and many paths leading to God.
    trust me, after what we’ve gone through the only way to get any guidance is via spirit. since turning everything over to spirit for guidance I have done nothing but improve, I can’t even imagine the arrogance and ego of people talking down to anyone’s beliefs or connecting to God for guidance and direction simply because our methods arent the same does not make you in any way shape or form superior to what I have chosen simply because I connect to spirit for advice and direction…. woo? I think not after going through what we’ve gone through these past 7 years at the hands of the allopaths I can think of no better Source than God for my direction the white coats were poisoning me and I would have died a year ago had I not by the grace of god changed my direction. those who are open to change have a better survival rate there are millions self healing from hundreds of immune system disorders by following a holistic approach not as pulicized I know, why? because of their docs being attacked and shut down and websites shut down and threats by the FDA etc. and the only reason is Greed but the world is changing and there will come a day when this is mainstream as more and more people awaken to a higher level of consciousness unfortuantely as more and more of their loved ones die and they are ready to change the way they look at things because they have seen with their own eyes what the chems and white coats do…. they give you a load of goods and when things don’t turn out as planned they shrug their shoulders and kick you to the curb to suffer it out. I called my fertility specialist after the treatments I pleaded with her for help and told her I wasn’t the same and I was growing sicker and sicker was there any after care and her reply….. so see a gynocologist. you don’t have to believe my truth i only pray it’s not yours one day.

  169. #169 Chris
    April 13, 2011

    Sorry, RC, I am not going to bother to read your wall of text. Though I think you should know the discussion has moved to this article. I suspect that Orac will be shutting comments down on this old article.

  170. #170 kaymon
    June 5, 2011

    Blaming “The Secret” for Robert O. Young is an absurd leap of logic. His theory has nothing to do with “The Secret”. And Oprah specifically told Kim to her face that she should seek conventional medical care. This blog is ridiculous and desperate.

  171. #171 Chris
    June 5, 2011

    So? She still tried it and look what happened.

  172. #172 kaymon
    June 5, 2011

    “So? She still tried it and look what happened”

    No she ended up using Robert O. Young instead of “The Secret” because she was smart enough to know that positive thinking (aka The Secret) is not anywhere near a sufficient solution to health problems anymore than exercise is a sufficient cure for health problems. Robert O. Young was not a sufficient solution either, but she obviously was terrified of chemotherapy and surgery and she couldn’t get past that fear. Would she have lived longer had she followed Oprah’s advice to get conventional medical care? We have no way of knowing, and a single anecdote proves nothing anyway. There are far more people who have died from conventional medicine, but that doesn’t prove conventional medicine is useless because anecdotal evidence is no substitute for science.

  173. #173 Chris
    June 5, 2011

    It is not a single anecdote, it is anyone who follows Mr. Young.

    I see you are defending Oprah. Whoop dee do.

    “There are far more people who have died from conventional medicine,”

    Citation needed, and not from Gary Null.

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