Respectful Insolence

Genome healing strikes back

Well, screwed up transition to WordPress or not, I think it’s time to get back to the business of doing what Orac does best: Laying down the Insolence, Respectful and Not-So-Respectful. While the remaining bugs are being ironed out, I’ll work on trying to get the blog’s appearance back to the way I like it as I harass the Seed/NatGeo overlords to fix things up for the benefit of you, my readers. (Well, it’s also to my benefit, too. Using WordPress the way it’s configured now is a real PITA, if you know what I mean.) I thought about wandering over to that despicable den of antivaccine iniquity (yes, I’m referring to Age of Autism) but everything there now bored me. There’s also always Mike Adam’s even loonier multipurpose crazy pit. There was nothing truly exciting there, either, at least not to me and not right now.

So what’s been going on while I was basically forced to remain away from the blog, other than complaining in the comments about the transition, stamping out all the comment spam that’s been coming through, and in general seeing what my readers think of the new digs? It has, after all, been two days since I did a real Orac post. I’m not sure if this will qualify as an Orac gem or not (after all, it might take a couple of days for me to get back into the swing of things), but it will christen the new blog, so to speak. And what better way to christen the new blog than to take note of criticism and provide a calm, reasoned, respectful rebuttal?

Or Orac could do what he does best and provide the miscreant a heapin’ helpin’ of (not-so-)Respectful Insolence. That would be a an even more fitting way to inaugurate the new blog. After all, after the last couple of days, I’m in the mood.

Remember a couple of weeks ago when I resurrected Your Friday Dose of Woo in order to have a little fun with a particularly amusing bit of woo in which a man who goes by the moniker “Phaelosopher Adam Abraham” was advertising something he called the Genome Healing Workshop. Not only was this conference promising “genome healing,” but it was promising DNA/stem cell healing based on the principles of quantum physics! It’s not for nothing that I called this lovely bit of mystical pseudoscience the “Holy Trinity of Woo.”

Amazingly enough the “Phaelosopher” took notice. Yes, Abraham was apparently not as amused as one would have hoped at my having a bit of fun at his expense. Even better, he decided to write a post about it with what he no doubt considers to be an amusing title, A $cientist Cries ‘Woo’… How predictable. The pharma shill gambit embedded in the title with the simple move of changing the “s” in “scientist” to a dollar sign. For someone who is as able to produce psychedelic far out bits of woo in which he touts two Russians claiming to be able to “heal your genome” (or not, given their use of one of the most blatant quack Miranda warnings ever), he sure lacks imagination in other areas of his life.

In any case, our friend Abraham takes my little bit of not-so-Respectful Insolence directed at him as evidence that he must be on the right track:

As if I needed confirmation that we’re on to something. This is like the FDA’s declaration that MMS is, when used as directed, “a powerful bleach.” They’ve spent millions of taxpayer dollars attempting to make a case against the perception and actual truth that MMS has been a far greater help to many, willing to make a criminal out of Daniel Smith. But this too won’t hold up to the light of truth. There’s something far greater than MMS… and that’s the Healer Within each of us, to which Orac emphatically cries “woo!”

I must admit, I was a bit confused here. What I wrote had nothing to do with MMS or Daniel Smith. In fact, I didn’t even know who Daniel Smith is or what MMS is. So I did what I always do when confronted with these situations. I Googled, and I found this. MMS stands for “miracle mineral solution.” What it is, apparently, is 28% sodium chlorite in distilled water. Yes, this is basically equivalent to industrial strength bleach. However, the way MMS is used is in diluted form. Basically the sodium chlorite is diluted in either water or a food acid, such as lemon juice. These sorts of solutions have been used in municipal water systems for many years, and, disingenuously, it is that very fact that some MMS promoters use as evidence of its safety. Of course, at the level of dilution recommended, there’s not enough bleach left to do much of anything

It was originally sold by a man named Jim Humble, who claims that MMS can be used to successfully treat AIDS, hepatitis A,B and C, malaria, herpes, TB, most cancer and many more of mankind’s worse diseases. He even goes so far as to claim that 5,000,000 people have used MMS and that “hundreds of thousands” of lives have been saved. Unfortunately, it appears that for this function Jim Humble uses more concentrated MMS—a lot more concentrated. More horrifically, Humble bestows his “blessings” on poor people in Third World countries like Haiti, treating them like this:

We gotta give him just enough [industrial bleaching agent] that he don’t get sick but he’s on the edge of getting sick! So we’ve got to keep him just on the very edge and therefore it’s pretty intense for cancer, he needs to take it 4/5 times a day, small amounts instead of a big batch.

In fact, MMS is actually really nasty stuff, with some of its users suffering serious complications. Humble also teaches his disciples his quackery:

When people leave here they really know how to use MMS for all things, skin diseases of all kinds, colon problems, how to regenerate the liver, how to treat brain cancers, how to treat babies and pregnant women, and how to treat animals from mice to elephants. You will be personally taking MMS while here, spraying your skin with powerful solutions of MMS (but won’t hurt you), spraying others’ skin and hair. You will learn to use sprays, baths, IV solutions, MMS gas, soak the feet, and most importantly, the new protocols that in the country of Malawi have cured more than 800 people of HIV plus 40 cancer cases, 50 of feet and leg numbness, 3 heart disease cases, 13 diabetes cases, and many other diseases and problems.

Yes, you read it right. Jim Humble likes to go down to Haiti and the Dominican Republic and subject the poor there to industrial bleach. And, if you scroll down this page, you’ll see something very interesting indeed. It’s Adam Abraham himself in the Dominican Republic interviewing a woman named Tammy, who is described as working “at the only dedicated MMS help desk.” No wonder Abraham likes Daniel Smith. No wonder he likes him a lot. In fact, Abraham likes him so much that he can’t resist throwing in the Nazi extermination of Jews, gypsies, and homosexuals in castigating the government for prosecuting Smith and touts anecdotes of healing of brain cancers as proof that MMS works. It’s all very tiresome and predictable, in particular the rants against the FDA and the utter lack of scientific evidence supporting either the efficacy (or even the plausibility) of using “detoxified chlorine dioxide.”

The FDA, predictably, takes a dim view of Smith’s and Humble’s activities, as well it should. In particular, it has tried to stop Smith from selling and promoting MMS.

So what we have here is a man supporting the use of what is in essence industrial strength bleach lecturing me on what is scientific and what is not. Abraham notes that I became aware of the Genome Healing Conference through a flyer I saw when i was in Scottsdale attending the annual meeting of the American Society of Breast Surgeons. To bolster his pharma shill attack, he notes that some of the companies there sell things like a “Personalized Breast Cancer Genomic Profile,” prosthetics for breast reconstruction, the OncoType DX assay (which I’ve written about before; just type it in the search box above), and others. Based on this, Abraham mocks breast surgeons in general and me in particular while denying that’s what he’s doing:

This is by no means an attempt to mock breast surgeons, or attack the profession. It does, however, give you a glimpse into the training and mindset of Orac, and why the notion of Genome Healing, in the absence of any actual research on his own (which would put him at odds to his profession and its conventions of thinking), is viewed with such skepticism and derision.

I always find it amusing how quackery supporters like Abraham seem to think that it’s not possible to recognize that something like Genome Healing is utterly ridiculous without doing detailed research. Let’s just put it this way: Any second year college biology student or first year medical student would recognize, based on the general knowledge of genetics that they’ve been taught, that “Genome Healing” is pretty much as ridiculous as homeopathy. The reason “Genome Healing” is “at odds with my profession and its conventions of thinking” is not because my profession is dogmatic, but because from a scientific standpoint Genome Healing is the purest quackery. It has no basis in science, no scientific or clinical studies to show that it is even feasible, and no clinical evidence to show that it works. He believes it because…well, he believes it. Yet he has the chutzpah to label me as being the passive mark, believing whatever the powers that be in medicine tell me to be true. Pot, kettle, black, anyone?

And, of course, if you believe Abraham, we skeptics are so close-minded that we won’t even consider the possibility that he might be on to something:

What I find fascinating is the literal aversion that Orac and many of his readers appear to have against even considering the possibility that such a level and form of healing is indeed possible. There is no harm involved in activating one’s own healing abilities and using Nature’s systems. There’s great harm in castration and breast mutilation. There’s great harm in standard oncological treatment. Yet these practices go unquestioned and unchallenged. The surgeons step in to make the patient feel that they have an acceptable replacement for that “bad” and misbehaving body part that you didn’t need anymore.

I’m willing to bet that there are very likely no doctors who have had a radical mastectomy. Most likely because the vast majority are males, and any women doctors who have had a radical mastectomy would likely not wish such an ordeal on anyone.

Of course, Abraham is “radically” behind the times. Radical mastectomies haven’t been standard of care for 30 or 40 years. These days we do lumpectomies (also known as partial mastectomies) and we no longer remove all the lymph nodes on most women. In fact, we don’t do that many mastectomies anymore (at least I don’t), so much so that I noticed it when I had to do a couple of mastectomies in a row during the last couple of weeks. Be that as it may, I actually have considered the possibility that “such a level and form of healing” is possible. I then considered what we know about cell biology, genetics, biochemistry, and physics and decided that, while “such a level and form of healing” might be possible, it is so incredibly improbable that its plausibility can be approximated by the word “impossible.” Show me sufficiently compelling evidence of quality and quantity in the same order of magnitude as the massive quantities of evidence that lead to the conclusion that “genome healing” of the sort espoused by the “miracle Russians” and Abraham is impossible, and I will start to change my mind.

I won’t hold my breath waiting for that evidence.

Abraham then winds up with a classic appeal to ignorance, followed by an appeal to openmindedness to the point of one’s brain’s falling out, concluding with sales pitch:

I also don’t know that restoration of The Norm of the Creator is not possible. Neither does Orac or his posse. If restoration of The Norm is really possible, and we can re-instruct our DNA, reactivate Stem Cells (if they haven’t been decimated by chemotherapy), and lengthen telomeres, we owe it to ourselves to figure out how, and to KNOW for ourselves whether it is true. A real scientist will be open to the possibility, and willing to see the evidence or experience it for himself. The price of $3,000 for this course also pales against a medical education that easily costs over $100,000, and is costing millions of lives from standard treatments each year.

Actually, my medical education cost maybe $50,000, but then I went to a state school in the 1980s.

Get a load of Abraham’s classic appeal to ignorance. To him, we don’t know whether genome healing is not possible; therefore it must be possible to re-instruct our DNA, reactivate stem cells, lengthen telomeres, etc. And, of course, Abraham is more than happy to instruct you for the low, low bargain price of $3,000, which, by the way, is cheap next to going to medical school. I find that last bit in particular to be quite hilarious, implicit in it is the assumption that his woo is equivalent to what is taught in medical school.

The sad thing is, with the rise of quackademic medicine, it might be today. At this rate, some day we might see Professor Adam Abraham teaching genome healing in a medical school near you.

Comments

  1. #1 elburto
    May 24, 2012

    Remember Rhys Morgan? (Welsh lad who attracted the ire of Marc Stephens) He got his start in skepticism after he was banned from a Crohns’ forum, for taking on someone promoting MMS as a cure for IBD.

    MMS is also popular with the Morgellons and Chronic Lyme “patients”. Apparently, intractable vomiting after swallowing bleach means it’s working. It’s purging those toxins you see!

  2. #2 palindrom
    May 24, 2012

    I always find it amusing how quackery supporters like Abraham seem to think that it’s not possible to recognize that something like Genome Healing is utterly ridiculous without doing detailed research.

    This parallels my experience crossing swords with astrophysics crackpots — in particular “Electric Universe” proponents. Their theories are physically impossible and completely ignore reams and reams of detailed astrophysical evidence. When challenged, they assert that conventional astrophysicists don’t understand plasma physics like they do, so any criticisms are invalid.

    I work in a department that’s about half plasma physicists — real ones — and they find the EU stuff to be preposterous, as it is.

    I thank my lucky stars (and as an astronomer, I know exactly which ones they are!) that we don’t have these folks out there persuading wealthy donors to endow chairs in Wackademic Astronomy. In that respect, the situation in medicine is quite alarming.

  3. #3 sophia8
    May 24, 2012

    I’m willing to bet that there are very likely no doctors who have had a radical mastectomy. Most likely because the vast majority are males,
    The eejit doesn’t even know that men can get breast cancer as well.

  4. #4 Black Antelope
    May 24, 2012

    “Any second year college biology student”
    I think you underestimate bio students. I knew exactly why this sort of thing was bullshit in sixthform.

    Also, IV bleach? What could possibly go wrong…. Maybe thats why his ‘students’ think the treatment works, if they’re taking it at the same time.

  5. #5 herr doktor bimler
    May 24, 2012

    I’m willing to bet that there are very likely no doctors who have had a radical mastectomy.

    I for one am happy to take him up on that bet. What stake is he willing to gamble? $100? $1000?
    http://www.amazon.com/Journey-through-Cancer-Personal-Experience/dp/0595303064

  6. #6 herr doktor bimler
    May 24, 2012

    As for MMS, tempting though it is to smile at the stupidity of the industrial-bleach injectors and see them as potential Darwin Awards, the amusement wears off quickly when you discover Jim Humble and his acolytes discussing the right dosage to administer to infants and toddlers.

  7. #7 Science Mom
    http://justthevax.blogspot.com/
    May 24, 2012

    It sounds as though the sad scammer is peeved at being called out.

  8. #8 Calli Arcale
    May 24, 2012

    Let’s just put it this way: Any second year college biology student or first year medical student would recognize, based on the general knowledge of genetics that they’ve been taught, that “Genome Healing” is pretty much as ridiculous as homeopathy.

    I have a BA in English and I know it’s baloney. It’s hard to find somethign quite as preposterous as homeopathy, but genome healing gives it a real run for its money.

    palindrom — I encountered an individual once who managed to out-woo the EU proponents. He claimed that gravity did not exist: it was actually the Earth expanding. You’d think orbits would clue him in, but no, he’d managed to persuade himself that orbits worked in his model. Never before had I seen a mind so firmly closed around a notion. Maybe that’s what “mind like a steel trap” ought to mean — it’s snapped shut on an idea and will not let go. The idea eventually gnaws it own leg off to be free of the trap, but the trap hangs on to the lost limb as if it has the whole animal.

  9. #9 Mu
    May 24, 2012

    Genome healing is perfect, you can’t disprove it other than with a whole genome sequencing, and if that doesn’t show any effect, than it has to work due to quantum epigenetics.

  10. #10 Glass Pinecone
    May 24, 2012

    Parents of children with autism are giving MMS to their kids! “Bishop” Kerri Rivera will be presenting at the AutismOne in Chicago this coming Sunday
    http://www.autismone.org/content/38-children-recovered-20-months-autism-treatment-mms

  11. #11 Denice Walter
    May 24, 2012

    Not sure, I may have lost a comment :
    here is the less poetic gist-
    LHK’s new boss, Barry Segal ( Focus Autism) writes to US Secretary of Health and Human Services, Kathleen Sebelius to request firings, hearings, meetings, changing research goals et al. He represents 100 000 people and several crank groups, who co-sign the letter. All in time for the conference.

    # TMR: yesterday’s screed explores the ‘stolen child’ meme and illustrates just what effect the concept of’ ‘broken-ness’ might have on a child’s self-esteem.

  12. #12 Eric Lund
    May 24, 2012

    When challenged, they assert that conventional astrophysicists don’t understand plasma physics like they do

    They happen to be technically correct. They just don’t consider the possibility that this is because their understanding of plasma physics is not even wrong. (I mean this phrase in the way Pauli used it: something so incoherent or absurd that it does not rise to the level of being wrong.)

    Likewise with Mr. Abraham here. He stops short of claiming that Orac doesn’t understand medicine the way he does, but that’s implied by what he is saying. And as with the crackpot astrophysicists Palindrom encounters, the reason is because Mr. Abraham’s understanding of medicine is not even wrong.

  13. #13 JGC
    May 24, 2012

    Better a $cientist than a Phaelo$opher…

  14. #14 Denice Walter
    May 24, 2012

    *Restoration of the Norm of the Creator*? I didn’t catch that before.

    Perhaps I’ll create my own rule: the deeper the woo, the more likely it will rely upon the supernatural..

    Despite the type of deity or vital- soul-like- essence implied or whether the ghost-in-the-machine is used to explain gaps in formulae or functions purely as lucrative window-dressing to pull in religious customers : it’s immaterial. Woo runs on insubstantiality both literally and figuratively.

  15. #15 Anton P. Nym
    http://anton-p-nym.livejournal.com/
    May 24, 2012

    MMS reared its ugly head here in the Great White North last February, and I blogged about the Health Canada response then:

    http://anton-p-nym.livejournal.com/387963.html

    I still don’t get how he same folks who get all bug-eyed about “chemicals” in the environment are drinking (or shooting up!). bleach. *shakes head*

    — Steve

  16. #16 Composer99
    http://composer99.blogspot.com
    May 24, 2012

    More like Fail-o$opher IMO.

  17. #17 Anthony
    May 24, 2012

    Huh. The FDA’s dim view (http://www.fda.gov/Safety/MedWatch/SafetyInformation/SafetyAlertsforHumanMedicalProducts/ucm220756.htm ) is pretty impressive. You usually don’t see phrases like “Consumers who have MMS should stop using it immediately and throw it away.”

  18. #18 g724
    May 24, 2012

    Hey Orac, you’ll love this and it’s topical: “magical cleaning water” promoted by a major manufacturer of industrial floor-cleaning machines. This takes woo to a whole new level.

    An unrelated search led me to this page:
    http://worldsweeper.com/Industry/AdvanceOnTennant4.12.html
    This is posted on a website that covers the entire field of municipal and private sweeping & surface cleaning, from roads to parking lots to the floors of large buildings.

    You have probably seen workers using floor scrubbing machines in supermarkets, hospitals, and other places: basically the machine scrubs the floor with brushes and water and sometimes detergent, vacuums up the liquid & suspended dirt as it goes, and leaves the floor bright and clean.

    A company known as Tennant, apparently a well-established manufacturer of parking lot sweepers and indoor floor scrubbers, stooped to the level of homeopathy and MMS, claiming that it had a new technology called “ec-H2O” that electrically charged plain tap water to make it a powerful floor cleaning solution, more powerful than detergents.

    This stirred up quite a bit of skepticism, and finally a competing manufacturer, Nikfisk-Advance, also well-established in the industry, subjected Tennant’s “ec-H2O” claims to independent third-party testing. As might be expected, the results were that “ec-H2O” was so much nonsense.

    Plain water is actually a decent cleaning solution by itself, and is used in all industrial floor scrubbers. Many of these machines also dispense detergents either all the time or when the operator presses a button to clean an especially nasty area of a floor. But Nilfisk-Advance’s testing found that Tennant’s “ec-H2O” didn’t clean any better than plain water.

    And so a minor scandal has erupted. The editor of WorldSweeper is a smart guy by the name of Ranger Kidwell-Ross, who’s clearly skeptical of nonsense, and he wrote a little about this and then posted Nilfisk-Advance’s press release, that utterly shreds Tennant’s ridiculous claims.

    What I have to wonder is, why would a leading manufacturer of industrial cleaning equipment stoop to the level of “magical water.” Maybe they’re taking a hit from competitors and are trying to save their market share? In any case it would appear that they’ve shot themselves in both feet with this one.

    Below, a couple of paragraphs quoted from the link above.

    — quote —

    Upon launch of its ec-H20 technology, Tennant for years widely boasted on its website and in its marketing materials that “ec-H20 converts water into a powerful detergent.” Following the public disclosure of extensive third-party scientific testing that concluded ec-H20 performs no better than plain tap water, Tennant modified its advertising claim to “ec-H20 converts water into a superior cleaning solution.”

    Recently, Tennant has even abandoned that claim, and no longer asserts in its advertising that ec-H20 is a “powerful” or “superior” cleaning solution. Tennant has not produced any reliable and independent scientific evidence that proves that its ec-H20 technology cleans floor surfaces better than plain tap water, or as well as chemical detergents.

    — end quote —

    What will they think of next?

  19. #19 johnV
    May 24, 2012

    Despite my great efforts, I have not been able to genome-heal myself a pair of wings or fire breath.

  20. #20 elburto
    May 24, 2012

    Calli – no gravity? Brilliant, I’m no longer crippled if I can just float about!

    Right, I’m off to smash up my (now unnecessary) assistive devices.

  21. #21 palindrom
    May 24, 2012

    Eric Lund @11:05 AM — You’re right, of course. One question I challenge them with, which my main adversary has so far refused to answer, is: “Does a current-carrying copper wire have a net charge? Yes or no.” Their main debating point is that electrical forces are “39 orders of magnitude” stronger than gravity; they then mix in a bunch of Swedish names, point at some accidental morphological resemblance, and voila, a century of astrophysics is falsified in their eyes.

    They seem to have no understanding whatsoever of spectroscopy, by the way, but of course that’s only the beginning.

  22. #22 herr doktor bimler
    May 24, 2012

    Maybe that’s what “mind like a steel trap” ought to mean — it’s snapped shut on an idea and will not let go.

    I was under the impression that it meant “rusty, and banned in most civilised countries”.

    I still don’t get how he same folks who get all bug-eyed about “chemicals” in the environment are drinking (or shooting up!). bleach.

    There should be some special award for the people who self-administer MMS (because it’s a powerful oxidant so it kills pathogens) in combination with DMSO (also a Good Thing because it’s it’s a powerful anti-oxidant) for twice the benefit. Typically the cocktail also includes colloidal silver.
    It’s NATURAL!

  23. #23 Calli Arcale
    May 24, 2012

    elburto — alas, no, you cannot smash up your assistive devices. You see, although gravity does not exist, you will still have the appearance of falling, only it’s actually the ground rushing up to meet you. The Earth is expanding at a rate of 1 G. We don’t notice because everything else is also expanding, at a rate which exactly cancels this out. You might wonder why Earth and Moon don’t seem to get closer together, but this is because of the expansion of the Universe, of course. Why is perceived gravity stronger on the Earth than the Moon? Well, because Earth is expanding faster, obviously.

    You can see where this rapidly breaks down if you think about it. But arguing with this fellow was like trying to nail jelly to the wall. He was much more pleasant than Th1Th2, though. (More coherent too.)

  24. #24 peebs
    May 24, 2012

    According to the late, great Douglas Adams, in order to fly all you have to do is throw yourself at the ground and miss.

  25. #25 elburto
    May 24, 2012

    Oh bugger. I wish I’d come back and checked the comments before I tried that spot of gravity denial.

    Ah well, the carpet burns on my face only add to my feminine mystique, I’m sure.

    Thank heaven I didn’t sell my crip-chariot for scrap, especially as my carpet-based target practice seems to have altered the angle of my feet in relation to my legs!

  26. #26 makeinu
    May 24, 2012

    Apparently, intractable vomiting after swallowing bleach means it’s working. It’s purging those toxins you see!

    Great, now I have “Bleach Boys” going through my head :P

    I’m very proud of the respect I’ve earned
    And my voice is very deep cause my throat got burned
    Bleach keeps you young so I’ve been told
    Cause no one who drinks it lives to get old
    Drink it with a chaser was the first thing that I learned

  27. #27 Denice Walter
    May 24, 2012

    Abraham thinly disguises his hatred of doctors- who can tell if it is fuelled by jealousy, arrogance or stupidity, or a confluence of all three; clearly, this resembles countless screeds I’ve encountered at those reeking, infectious swamps of decaying vegetable material I often frequent (Natural News, Progressive Radio Network, AoA,TMR).

    We’re told about how 600K to 1milion die at the hands of medicine and how doctors wielding deadly vaccines “destroy” thousands of children *each year*. We’re told that they’re indoctrinated by their superiors into “conventional thinking”… oddly, the woo-meisters are the ones who parrot the same short list of derisive memes-their rants are nearly interchangeable- usually the only variations come from their idiosyncratic malaproprisms, mispronounciations and low-grade metaphors.

  28. #28 bad poet
    May 24, 2012

    The Westin Lombard Yorktown is not far away from the Home Depot. All the Autism One con attendees and exhibitors can go buy more paint thinner, glue, spray paint, acetone, bleach, and almost everything else they need to stay high.

  29. #29 Radically Moderate
    May 24, 2012

    Good grief.

    ARCADY Petrov (pictured) graduated from Moscow’s World Information Distributed University as a Full professor, PHd and Grand PhD, fulfilling WIDU’s criteria for outstanding researchers and professors.

    Second hit for “World Information Distributed University” is a WIkipedia article for unaccredited universities. It’s a fucking diploma mill.

  30. #30 c0nc0rdance
    May 24, 2012

    Jim Humble’s story really is sickening. I had a chance to chat with what I tentatively believe was really him on my YouTube video about MMS. He’s a “TRUE BELIEVER” in his own magical cure for all disease, not IMHO, a charlatan/snake oil salesman. The psychology at work puts me much more in mind of a tent revival preacher, caught up in his own performance, but surrounded by the schemers who wait in the wings to fleece the unwitting.

    My continued line of questioning to him was:
    “If you have a cure for AIDS, cancer or malaria, you OWE IT to the world to get it into clinical testing.” His response was a dogged insistence that he doesn’t profit from his product.

    Sad.

  31. #31 Denice Walter
    May 24, 2012

    @ c0nc0rdance:

    I tend to believe that some woo-meisters are * technically* charlatans who also believe in their own magic *to a degree* – thus altho’ they appear to have only half a mind, they are of two minds: they realise *to a degree* that they are pulling the wool over their marks’ eyes but they also believe in their own superlative mental capacities and special abilities. They often follow their own regimes and ridiculous health ideas, even to their own detriment.
    Recently, two of these idiots create rants against corporatism, the decline of education and the public’s inability to understand science altho’ they themselves own corporations, are ill-educated and rely upon the public’s lack of suspicion of their spurious claims – I imagine they are laughing their respective ways to the bank- and are very sincere while doing so.
    *O what a tangled web we weave….”

  32. #32 Pareidolius
    May 24, 2012

    I’m sorry, but when I read the post I saw “restoration of Norm the Creator . . .”

    Oh Holy Norm, we pray for forgiveness and your rightful restoration. We humbly request that you lengthen our telomeres and clean our genes . . . in Norm’s Holy Name, we pray.

    Hey, it makes as much sense as any of his “science.” Who want’s to join me in America’s Fastest Growing Religion®, The Church of the Extended Telomere (Restored)™?

  33. #33 Kelly M Bray
    The slightly cooler side of Hell.
    May 24, 2012

    Ok, you want woo? I think I have you all beat. I have had this long running encounter with a real nut case at The Hive. I mean she is the Queen of Woo. Prions, HIV denial, lyme disease, genocidal conspiracies, and Big Pharma. A word salad extraordinaire. Read, laugh, and then sigh knowing there are many more out there.

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/social/Silvermaven/whooping-cough-washington-epidemic_n_1507249_153944929.html

  34. #34 Kelly M Bray
    The slightly cooler side of Hell.
    May 24, 2012

    I think she is Mike Adams sister.

  35. #35 Pareidolius
    Sonoma County, The Heart of the Axis of Me-ville™
    May 25, 2012

    Good news! We have an opening at the Church of the Extended Telomere (Restored), we are looking for someone to fill the position of Grand High Failosopher. Applicant must have their own car and a direct line to Norm. The Church of the Extended Telomere (Reformed) is an equal opportunity employer.

  36. #36 Kelly M Bray
    The slightly cooler side of Hell.
    May 25, 2012

    Is anyone seeing pots show up on the right hand “Recent Insolence returned” column but not in the article.

  37. #37 Kelly M Bray
    The slightly cooler side of Hell.
    May 25, 2012

    Not *pots*……. *posts*

  38. #38 Sadie Burke
    United States
    May 25, 2012

    Why yes, I fully believe in the power of sodium chlorite! It is truly a miracle solution. In fact I’m using it right now…to bleach my son’s poopy diapers.

    He and the woo sellers have something in common: they both spread sh*t in the world.

  39. #39 flip
    May 25, 2012

    I often think that if Darwin were here now he’d be amazed at all the cool things that we’ve worked out, DNA especially. And then I think if put in front of woo merchants like Humble, et al, he’d head-desk himself. I’d bet even with a minimal understanding of DNA and the evidence, Darwin would be able to see just how wrong these people are.

  40. #40 alison
    the antipodes
    May 25, 2012

    Kelly Bray – the list of comments I’m seeing is exactly the same as the list I saw yesterday :-( (with the desktop spammer – at least, I’m assuming it’s a spammer) at the top of the list.

    I blogged about MMS myself, a year or so back now. Someone I knew vaguely turned up in the comments thread, asking if I thought it would help for his mother’s cancer. I explained as gently as I could why it wouldn’t; all very sad.

  41. […] planning on showing up at Autism One this year (although I do hope that someone is). Then I saw this comment after yesterday’s post. Yesterday’s post, you might recall, was ostensibly about a man who calls himself the […]

  42. #42 Raging Bee
    May 25, 2012

    This kinda sounds like a Saturday Night LIve skit: “It’s a floor cleaner! It’s a cancer cure! It’s a floor cleaner AND a cancer cure!”

  43. #43 Paul Morgan (@drpaulmorgan)
    United Kingdom
    May 25, 2012

    Just when you thought that the MMS story was dead and buried, it raises it ugly head again with more deluded bullshit emanating from the mouth and keyboard of Adam Abraham, aka the Failosopher (note the spelling). Seriously, this is the sort of crank with whom there is no point trying to argue from a scientific standpoint – I don’t think he would recognise science if it punched him repeatedly in the face. He is one person for whom mocking is the only acceptable form of communication. His blog is a testament to the healing power of MMS and now, it seems, the crank magnetism is growing stronger.
    As for Jim Humble, he may be a “true believer”, but the business model to hide from investigation by the relevant authorities has involved setting up a church – yes, a CHURCH – as a means to avoid and deflect investigation into his activities in touting his bleach cure. http://www.guardian.co.uk/science/2010/sep/15/miracle-mineral-solutions-mms-bleach
    Yes – setting up a church because that how Catholic priests managed to get away with years of child sexual abuse. Now that is truly sickening. The bullshit emanating from “Bishop” Humble and his organisation continues unabated it seems http://genesis2church.org/
    Ultimately, compared to more established forms of quackery such as homeopathy, it is likely that the market for MMS is small. However, the fact that in the US this nonsense is still being touted despite the FDA warning is testimony to the gullibility and desperation of many people. Indeed, it seems that the FDA warning is regarded as a badge of honour amongst the quacks and charlatans. They conveniently ignore the severe harm that such treatments can produce and the victims of their dangerous nonsense such as Sylvia Fink http://www.theage.com.au/national/miracle-elixir-linked-to-death-illness-20100821-13a2z.html

  44. #44 Jay Chaplin
    May 25, 2012

    Adam Abraham really IS a quantum expert, in the most literal sense of the words… Could there be any less expertise than not knowing if what you are teaching doesn’t work? The only state lower than that is knowing that what you are teaching doesn’t work. He is one quanta, the smallest possible increment, above the nadir of expertise.

  45. #45 Ultra Venia
    May 26, 2012

    Humble is a piece of work. He and his minions try to abuse his Wikipedia article consistently. He doesn’t want to “make money” unless you want to read the second half of his book. That’ll cost ya.

  46. #46 LiisaW
    May 26, 2012

    Calli @May 24, 10:29 am
    I had an excellent dressmaker so not an utter idjit who would once claim on a public forum that gravity is only matter of faith. She also uses colloidal silver for all her ailments and I’m eagerly waiting when she starts turning blue. Oddly enough, she takes her pet rats to the vet.
    Anyway, I never saw said woman floating around and my friendly advice to start a furniture-or-something moving business fell on a barren ground.

  47. #47 kia
    May 29, 2012

    Maybe I’m unusual but if I was ever diagnosed with breast cancer, I want ‘em just plain cut off. I don’t need them – even for breastfeeding, as I’m done with having babies – so why mess around? Wouldn’t cutting off the offending part entirely, as you are able to do so in the case of breast cancer, result in better long term outcomes?

  48. […] a chemical used for water purification that a quack—yes, quack—named Jim Humble has touted as a miracle cure for just about everything from cancer to AIDS to a wide variety of conditions, serious and not-so-serious. There is no […]

  49. […] cure” for conditions as disparate as cancer and autism. It is nothing more than a 28% solution of sodium chlorite, a chemical widely used for water purification. A couple of months ago at that yearly quackfest of […]

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