Respectful Insolence

It’s Christmas Eve, and the blogging is light. I was going to have some fun with a truly ridiculous—is there ever any other kind?—segment on Dr. Oz’s show in which he actually combined a quack and a psychic with some EEGs to become a “100% believer” in psychic scammer “Long Island Medium” Theresa Caputo. However, Steve Novella got to it before I did; so there isn’t much left, and with Christmas tomorrow my blogging schedule will become a lot more intermittent for the next few days. By the time I get back into the regular groove, other quackery will likely have popped up, and Oz’s latest offense against science and reason will have faded into the background noise of his quackery. Or maybe there will have been a new, even worse offense. With Dr. Oz, you never know.

Be that as it may, as I wish all my readers a joyous Yuletide season and a happy New Years, there is something that I am very much looking forward to in early 2014 and something that I’m so grateful for right now that I can’t resist mentioning it right here, as a little Christmas present to all my readers. Remember three weeks ago, when contender for the title of One Quack To Rule Them All, Mike Adams, bragged about his impending announcement of a groundbreaking “discovery” that would, according to him, revolutionize food science, as he sat in front of scientific equipment without a lab coat, lab safety glasses on top of his head rather than being worn to protect his eyes, all with a feces-slurping grin. Elsewhere, Adams posted YouTube videos like this touting his “revolutionary” science:

The date for that announcement is fast approaching.

In fact, just yesterday, Adams decided to dole out more information about this “revolutionary” and “groundbreaking” discovery that he claims to have made. It turns out that this will be more than just a single announcement. It will be “announcements,” and there will be “several new mini-documentary videos, feature story announcements as well as unscripted videos from the lab.”

Comedy gold! Blog fodder galore! I can hardly wait! Thank you, Mike, for making my new year a potentially happy and fruitful one (from a blogging standpoint, anyway). I know it will be hilarious because of how Adams describes his impending announcements:

Not everything is being announced in just one day. These are complex, high-level scientific breakthroughs that require considerable explanation to convey. It’s going to take us the entire week to get all the important announcements released, so plan to see breakthrough announcements on January 7, January 8, January 9 and beyond.

Yes, he still seems to think that he’s a real scientist, except that I don’t know any real scientists who would announce a discovery this way. I’m not claiming that some real scientists don’t engage in showboating. However, real scientists publish their findings in the peer-reviewed literature first. “Scientists” who don’t publish their findings in the peer-reviewed literature first (or who don’t at least first present them at a scientific meeting) are looked upon in the scientific community as dubious—and rightly so. Of course, Adams is so far beyond dubious that if dubious were on earth he’d be in another galaxy somewhere, but the same principle applies. What makes this case amusing is that Adams is playing at being a scientist. What makes it sad is that he’s apparently managed to get his hands on real and expensive scientific equipment, which he’s using in the service of pseudoscience. Given how poor funding levels are right now and how many scientists are doing without equipment that they could use, it’s a travesty that a quack like Adams is playing—and, again, that’s all he’s doing—with expensive scientific equipment like a mass spectrometer.

In my last post about Adams, I speculated that he’s probably going to be using mass spectroscopy to measure various elements and molecules in supplements and food. I also wondered if he had acquired a real time PCR machine and was planning on looking for GMO-associated genetic sequences, to prove that virtually every food has GMOs in it. The purpose? To sell you his own brand of supplements and health foods, of course! Now, I’m even more convinced that that’s what he’s up to:

I can’t give you all the details yet because I need to show you the full data set along with explanations, but there are many claims which have been made about some dietary substances which are simply not true. Some of these myths have been propagated around the natural products industry for so long — and repeatedly quoted by “experts” — that they are assumed to be true. Yet our research reveals that they are not true at all. Some of these myths have been promoted by well-known holistic doctors.

And:

Because one of the things I’ve found in all this research is that natural product formulators are often just “wildly guessing” about the efficacy of their products. Through meticulous research, I have been able to discover that many of the most highly-touted products in certain categories are actually not every effective at all… and there are far more effective substances that accomplish the same goals at a significantly lower cost.

Anyone want to bet whether part of Mikey’s announcement will be that he’s now selling (or teaming up with a company selling) these “far more effective substances”? Yeah, that’d be a sucker’s bet. But Mike can sure make it sound science-y:

Thank you for your patience as we have been intensely engaged in the high-level chemistry and atomic spectroscopy necessary to develop and document this breakthrough science.

None of this has been easy. For several months, I have personally spent 12-hour days in the lab doing things like developing methodologies, testing concentration variabilities and running what now amounts to thousands of samples of foods, superfoods and nutritional supplements. This research takes a tremendous amount of time, money and effort to conduct.

There has already been conspiracy speculation on how we were able to access the hugely expensive instrumentation necessary to conduct this research, but the simple (and boring) answer is that we funded this from your purchases at the Natural News Store. We collected the profits from that effort, in other words, and instead of stuffing them into our own pockets, we made huge investments in food science research that’s now just two weeks from changing our world for the better.

“High level chemistry”? Oh, Mr. Adams, you owe me yet another new keyboard. I was drinking coffee as I read that. I really should know better by now, but I was. Mikey’s so cute, too. He really does think he’s doing real science. Am I supposed to be impressed that Mike claims to have spent 12-hour days in the lab? Where’s his dedication? That’s short! What about weekends? Of course, you can spend all the time in the world at the lab, but if you don’t know what you’re doing all that will result from it is more copious quantities of useless, invalid results. Given Adams’ lack of scientific ability, his apparent lack of concern for controls and instrument calibration, we can anticipate that that’s what he’ll come up with.

As I said before, though, it’ll be comedy gold and highly amusing blog fodder for 2014. His announcing more of his intention is also the most beautiful unwitting Christmas gift to skeptics like me. Merry Christmas!

ADDENDUM: Holy crap. How did I miss this? It’s been pointed out in the comments below that Mike Adams has given us another Christmas present. Even better, he’s sitting in his lab as he gives it! Check it out!

He even makes a racist comment about its being “like Christmas in Harlem” based on a gangster rap coloring book he’s included in his song. Wow.

Comments

  1. #1 Dangerous Bacon
    December 24, 2013

    It’s curious that Adams is planning to show up “well-known holistic doctors” with his “groundbreaking research”. Up till now I haven’t seen much in the way of NN attacks on other quackery gurus, at least not calling them out by name.

    Maybe pickings are getting thin in the woo business, and the Mike Adams profit model increasingly will depend on trashing his competitors.

    Are we about to see a full-scale shooting war break out in the quackery ranks? Now that would be one heck of a present. :)

  2. #2 TBruce
    December 24, 2013

    <blockquote.Are we about to see a full-scale shooting war break out in the quackery ranks? Now that would be one heck of a present.

    I love a good kookfight. Hell, I’d buy the video.

  3. #3 TBruce
    December 24, 2013

    I want a preview function for Xmas.

  4. #4 AnObservingParty
    December 24, 2013

    Gah! I forgot about this!!

    I still get such a kick out of his waiting for the 7th so everyone could recover. Not that I don’t plan on being hungover on 1/1, but, goodness Mikey, have some respect for your readers. Why would you think they’d forget your BS over the holidays? Just because it’s the holidays? And missed business opportunity: Mikey-approved alcohol. But then he’d have to get a liquor license and the government would actually pay attention to him and his “lab.”

  5. #5 Darwy
    Røde grøde...wait...no... Noo Inglind
    December 24, 2013

    “High School Level Chemistry”

    FTFY, Mike.

  6. #6 Unity
    December 24, 2013

    I rather suspect that he’s planning to announce the discovery of Unobtainium.

  7. #7 Jeff1971
    December 24, 2013

    People laughed when I said I wanted to be a comedian.

    They’re not laughing now!

  8. #8 Denice Walter
    December 24, 2013

    If we are to believe Mikey, he acquired much of his lab by discount shopping at university surplus websites. Thus he can claim he is not so very enriched by his internet sales.

    As an aside, it’s interesting that Mikey acknowledges that some of his followers might indeed drink for New Year’s-other woo-meisters entirely forbid alcohol and discourage its usage under any circumstances… as it kills brain cells.
    But shouldn’t they WANT that to happen?

    Yes siree, he has given us many gifts. Here are a few more-courtesy of our most likely targets ( a/k/a the lowest hanging fruit):

    Jake is scheduled to appear as a featured presenter @ Autism One in an ADVOCACY position. He is gathering a rather exclusive set of anti-vaxxers/ anti-AoAers @his AI site.

    TMR expects to recruit more moms and create a new collection of half-arsed sobstory rancid chicklit distortion-enabling power puff propagandising bs tripe… I mean another book.

    Gary Null promises an expose of the “quackbusters’ (sic) which means us I imagine. He and his “scholars in residence” (sic) have gathered volumes of incriminating material on ALL of the leaders of the pharma-supported groupthink tank. He will reveal that Dr Steve (both of ‘em) collect/s mediaeval
    castles in Spain, Orac drives a Maserati
    quattroporte ( FYI – that will be pronounced *mas
    er a TAY quart pot*), Ben Goldacre works for pharma and the minions are all ingratiating, self-absorbed pharma sluts.

    -btw- I wish all minions a merry/ happy Christmas even though most of them are probably atheists or backsliders anyway who just use holidays as an excuse to slack off, drink and behave as badly as possible.

    Hey, we’ve gotten through the solstice, the sun is returning as Saturnalia unfolds
    although I am already extremely sick and tired and bored of the holidays…despite the drinking, parties, slacking off et al.

  9. #9 Sarah A
    December 24, 2013

    These are complex, high-level scientific breakthroughs that require considerable explanation to convey. It’s going to take us the entire week…

    Orac, you just made my day – and seriously alarmed my sister, who heard my shrieks of laughter from the other room. Oh me…and to think it takes over three months to explain quite basic scientific concepts to undergrads… obviously they’re just not trying hard enough.

  10. #10 Denice Walter
    December 24, 2013

    And here’s another gift for us:

    Rational wiki ( Natural News entry) lists Mikey’s predictions for 2013. Let’s see how accurate he’s been**-

    a global economic collapse
    martial law declared in the US
    shortages of guns and ammo
    false flag attacks
    shutdown of Natural News and Info Wars websites
    the rise of violent rhetoric
    the rise of global government
    media attacks on preparedness advocates and “patriots”
    disagreeing with the government labelled as a mental disorder
    more unemployment
    a US strike on Iran
    solar flares threaten communications

    Let’s give him the benefit of the doubt- there’s still another week left in 2013

    ** -btw- I am only culling the cream of the dreck- there’s even MORE!

  11. #11 Chris HIckie
    December 24, 2013

    He sells crap to people he scams using bad science so he can buy research equipment to misuse for more bad science so he can sell more crap to more gullible people. At least there is a finite number of people he call gull.

  12. #12 Fragmeister
    December 24, 2013

    You didn’t mention his other christmas present to the world http://m.youtube.com/watch?v=WAIEhTzrv_0
    Best watched after imbibing anaesthetic levels of ethanol.

  13. #13 bill smith
    December 24, 2013

    Ah, you can see more of his lab in that video.

  14. #14 Shay
    December 24, 2013

    At least there is a finite number of people he call gull.

    Not when there’s a sucker born every minute.

  15. #15 Chris HIckie
    December 24, 2013

    Not when there’s a sucker born every minute.

    But they live no longer than the rest of us (and quite possibly not as long). Shall we agree at any given point in time there exists a finite quantity of suckers?

  16. #16 Dangerous Bacon
    December 24, 2013

    Is a “call gull” a bird of ill repute?

  17. #17 Johanna
    December 24, 2013

    *throws peanuts at DB’s head*

  18. #18 Julian Frost
    December 24, 2013

    ” I have been able to discover that many of the most highly-touted products in certain categories are actually not every effective at all”
    Was I the only one who spotted that little error?

  19. #19 Chris HIckie
    December 24, 2013

    oh fudge…”call gull” meant to be “can gull”, but me have “brain dull” from holiday cookies.

  20. #20 Johnny
    127.0.0.1
    December 24, 2013

    I too look forward to Mikey’s brain droppings, and would like to say to our host and the assembled minions –

    Please accept with no obligation, implied or implicit my best wishes for an environmentally conscious, socially responsible, low stress, non-addictive, gender neutral, celebration of the winter solstice holiday, practiced within the most enjoyable traditions of the religious persuasion of your choice, or secular practices of your choice, with respect for the religious/secular persuasions and/or traditions of others, or their choice not to practice religious or secular traditions at all.

    A N D

    A fiscally successful, personally fulfilling, and medically uncomplicated recognition of the onset of the generally accepted calendar year 2014, but not without due respect for the calendars of choice of other cultures whose contributions to society have helped make America great, (not to imply that America is necessarily greater than any other country or is the only “AMERICA” in the western hemisphere,) and without regard to the race, creed, color, age, physical ability, religious faith, or sexual preference of the wishee.

    (By accepting this greeting, you are accepting these terms. This greeting is subject to clarification or withdrawal. It is freely transferable with no alteration to the original greeting. It implies no promise by the wisher to actually implement any of the wishes for her/himself or others, and is void where prohibited by law, and is revocable at the sole discretion of the wisher. This wish is warranted to perform as expected within the usual application of good tidings for a period of one year, or until the issuance of a subsequent holiday greeting, whichever comes first, and warranty is limited to replacement of this wish or issuance of a new wish at the sole discretion of the wisher.)

  21. #21 Alain
    December 24, 2013

    Is a “call gull” a bird of ill repute?

    Remind me of the gull coming with a pair of bunny ears on Facebook, she asked “want me for christmas?”, I had the misfortune to ask her what’s her price.

    Alain

  22. #22 Sawyer
    United States
    December 24, 2013

    I’m getting a kick out of imagining the chemical and equipment manufacturers that have to process Mike’s orders.

    “Hmm, 4L of nitric acid to Georgia Tech, Lawrence Livermore, Intel, and … Natural News? No. No way. We can’t really sell Mike Adams dangerous chemicals, can we? That must violate some sort of national security protocols. Wait, some jackass already sold him a microscope? Let’s just send him water and tell him it’s homeopathic acid.”

  23. #23 Narad
    December 24, 2013

    I have personally spent 12-hour days in the lab doing things like developing methodologies, testing concentration variabilities and running what now amounts to thousands of samples of foods, superfoods and nutritional supplements.

    Strangely, he doesn’t seem to have had to alter the whiteboard in this frenzy of activity.

  24. #24 Krebiozen
    December 24, 2013

    Perhaps someone should let Reynolds Consumer Products know that Adams is claiming that their FDA-certified BPA-free slow-cooker liners are poisoning people with BPA. Surely that’s illegal, even in the USA.

  25. #25 Bob G
    Los Angeles
    December 24, 2013

    Back in the late pleistocene (or 1985, anyway), some serious research scientists took a look at the kind of stuff sold as dietary supplements. They had been researching the adrenal steroid DHEA, which is mildly androgenic, and is actually one of the higher concentration steroids in the body. So they bought commercially sold, over the counter DHEA pills and tested them using scientifically acceptable methodology.

    What they found was that capsules advertised to contain 500 mg of DHEA were all over the place in terms of what they actually contained, but that range of all over the place was a very low range, around one-thirtieth of the advertised level.

    What I’m trying to point out is that you actually have to know what you’re doing if you want to measure things correctly. It also helps to have some a priori notion of the kinds of experimental artifacts you need to control. And lastly, consumers of these products are often lucky enough that they don’t actually get biologically active stuff in their pills.

    Am J Hosp Pharm. 1985 Mar;42(3):587-9.
    Analysis of nonprescription capsules purported to contain an adrenal androgen.
    Lifrak ET, Parker LN.
    Abstract
    The content of nonprescription capsules purported to contain dehydroepiandrosterone was analyzed. Five capsules labeled “dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA) 500 mg and natural precursors” were analyzed; all were from a single lot and container. Ether extracts were used to test for DHEA, cortisol, testosterone, and androstenedione using radioimmunoassay (RIA). The protein, starch, reducing-sugar, sodium, potassium, calcium, and magnesium contents were also measured. The mean (+/- S.D.) DHEA content per capsule was 14.40 + 5.16 micrograms. A mean androstenedione concentration of 1.22 + 0.21 micrograms was measured. Cortisol and testosterone were not detectable by RIA. Concentrations of the other ingredients (mean +/- S.D. for five capsules) were as follows: protein 35.2 +/- 2.3 mg, starch 39.9 +/- 2.7 mg, reducing sugars 3.2 +/- 0.2 mg, sodium less than 1.5 mM, potassium less than 0.15 mM, magnesium 0.60 mg, and calcium 3.45 mg. The total amount of free DHEA contained in the capsules was only a small fraction of the labeled amount of that steroid and was probably inadequate for producing any measurable effects.
    PMID: 3157316 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]

  26. #26 Denice Walter
    December 24, 2013

    But Kreb, he claims that everything ( except his own products) is poisoning people. I assume that he’ll get even *better* ( worse?) in January!
    I can hardly wait.

    Have a nice night everyone!
    I have to make myself presentable in order to observe a proper atheistic customary celebration – SE Asian cuisine, sarcasm and a movie.

  27. #27 Kemist
    December 24, 2013

    Wouldn’t it be hilarious if he blew himself up ?

    Chemistry undergrads always managed to have us call the firefighters at least once a year in the organic chem lab. There are plenty of very dangerous chemicals to play with in an actual lab. If I were his camera crew I’d stay behind a plexiglas shield.

    And good luck interpreting mass specs without a background in actual chemistry. Whatever he reads out of them will have just as much meaning as reading bird entrails. A bit like those ghost hunting morons who follow live wires with a magnetic field detector.

  28. #28 Narad
    December 24, 2013

    Perhaps someone should let Reynolds Consumer Products know that Adams is claiming that their FDA-certified BPA-free slow-cooker liners are poisoning people with BPA. Surely that’s illegal, even in the USA.

    Done. It’s not strictly what the form is for, but it’s more likely to be promptly directed to the correct desk than the regular contact form, and with careful phrasing, one could even kind of fit the paradigm. I’d go looking for their real legal contact information if I didn’t have to be someplace in an hour.

  29. #29 TBruce
    December 24, 2013

    shutdown of Natural News and Info Wars websites

    If this prediction came true, then all the other predictions of disaster would be worth it.

  30. #30 Ren
    December 24, 2013

    He’s going to announce that splenda is made from sugar. He’ll say that it’s just like sugar, except that there’s chloride in it. And his people will eat it right up, no pun intended.

  31. #31 Narad
    December 24, 2013

    Chemistry undergrads always managed to have us call the firefighters at least once a year in the organic chem lab.

    Let’s just say that it’s a good thing there were several heavy-duty exhaust fans in my high-school chemistry lab. A stick of purple chalk in 6 M HCl is not as inocuous a reaction as one might expect.

  32. #32 Scottynuke
    December 24, 2013

    In the spirit (although certainly not the letter) of Johnny @ #20

    May all the RI family’s days be merry and bright…

    And may all your Christmases be whatever color makes you happy! :D

    (P.S. — I’ve asked Santa for the ability to rhyme properly.)

  33. #33 Mrs Woo
    December 24, 2013

    May you all be happy celebrating (or not) celebrating this holiday season, and safe and prosperous in the coming new year.

  34. #34 Mrs Woo
    December 24, 2013

    All I want for Christmas is preview! The parentheses should be ending after the second celebrating.

  35. #35 jre
    December 24, 2013

    Even among the, um, unusual cast of characters who make up the elite of high-profile commercial quackaloons, Mike Adams is sui generis. In a profession requiring sublime self-confidence and utter obliviousness to one’s own limitations, Mike Adams is still the guy who can get Joe Mercola, Gary Null and Kevin Trudeau to do a triple face-palm over his latest tour de force of stupidity. “He said what?

    As I gawked at the current train wreck, something nagged at me. Who, exactly, does Mike Adams remind me of? Then it hit me.

    Wilbur Glenn Voliva.

    From Martin Gardner’s classic Fads and Fallacies in the Name of Science:

    Because of Voliva’s incredible ignorance, it is easier to see the psychological drives behind his outlandish views than in the case of cleverer cranks who conceal their motives under erudition and shrewd polemics. Voliva’s drives were two in number — a desire to defend a religious dogma, and a paranoid belief in his own greatness so far removed from reality as to border on the psychotic.

    Any questions?

  36. #36 David N. Andrews M. Ed., C. P. S. E.
    on a couch in a surprisingly warm for the time of year Finland
    December 24, 2013

    “high-level chemistry”

    That’s just buggering about with chemicals on the 90th floor of a high-rise!

  37. #37 Mephistopheles O'Brien
    December 24, 2013

    To all – a very happy solstice coincident occasion of your choice, if that’s what you choose to have! Not that I’m trying for force my opinions on your or tell you how to feel.

  38. #38 lsm
    December 25, 2013

    I was pleased to discover toward the end of the video (which I finally woke up for), that those who watch it are in the top 1% of the most intelligent people alive. But unfortunately, Orac may have to hire an unvaccinated consultant on January 7th, because those whose brains have been literally fried by mercury in vaccines will be unable to grasp what Adams has to say.

  39. #39 Kemist
    December 25, 2013

    Someday someone has to make a TV series about complete morons who buy costly items that they have no freaking idea how to use, but which other brain dead morons are impressed with.

    I’ve already got the first three episodes, one about ghost hunters, one about this doofus, and one about creationists who buy dinosaur bones.

    Title would be Morons With Money.

  40. #40 Mitch, PhD
    December 25, 2013

    My record for longest single continuous shift in the lab is 26.5 hours. My second longest is 25 h and my third longest is 24 h. 12 h is just a regular day. Time to get serious, Mike!

  41. #41 Denice Walter
    December 25, 2013

    @ Kemist:

    That is a spectacular idea.

    I could probably rhapsodise for hours ( altho’ I’ll spare you) about how people- who ‘dress to impress’- purchase incredibly bad, outrageously expensive fashion which they use to ill effect because they have no idea about how to use/ choose appropriate items.

    There is so much horrible-ness in both clothing and accessories that you could probably a dozen shows:
    Bad Retro
    Bad Watches
    Bad Bags
    Bad Evening
    Bad Weekend
    Bad Tropical
    Bad Business Suits, etc.

    I once encountered a pair of Stella MacCartney 100mm heels covered in rough, taupe cloth that I still have nightmares about and it’s been nearly 10 years.

  42. #42 Julian Frost
    Gauteng East Rand
    December 25, 2013

    @Kemist, an obvious one is people who buy high-performance vehicles but don’t go for the advanced driving training necessary to safely handle them at high speeds.

  43. #43 Julian Frost
    December 25, 2013

    Addendum: add powerboats to that.

  44. #44 Shay
    December 25, 2013

    Julian, my personal fave is the guy (or gal) who buys a handgun ‘for protection’ and thinks that one eight-hour mandatory safety class (the requirement varies from state to state) has miraculously transformed them into Deadeye Dick.

  45. #45 Julian Frost
    Gauteng East Rand
    December 25, 2013

    @Shay: while in reality they’re the Deadeye Dick from the Kurt Vonnegut novel of the same name.

  46. #46 sheepmilker
    Not a million miles from Toronto...
    December 25, 2013

    Someday someone has to make a TV series about complete morons who buy costly items are elected to run complex things that they have no freaking idea how to use, but which other brain dead morons are impressed with.

    Bad mayor.

  47. #47 Kemist
    December 25, 2013

    @Sheepmilker

    Lololololol…. ;)

    From an outsider point of view, what I just can’t understand, no matter how much I try is :

    1) Some people actually defend that irresponsible, authoritarian asshat

    2) He insists that he is not an alcoholic but uses alcohol as an excuse for his one-time (cough cough) crack smoking incident

    But somehow we can’t boast much more about how wonderful ours are. We got two mayors actually arrested for corruption here.

    However, they did not smoke crack. That we know of.

  48. #48 Shay
    December 26, 2013

    Kemist — Illinois has you all beat. Three of our last five governors went to jail.

  49. #49 Narad
    December 26, 2013

    Illinois has you all beat. Three of our last five governors went to jail.

    Hey, at least one of them brought to a halt a hopelessly broken capital-punishment system, directed substantial funding to infrastructure and education, and provoked discussion about the embargo of Cuba. They should’ve let Ryan out when his wife’s terminal diagnosis came down, if you ask me.

  50. #50 DLC
    December 26, 2013

    This outcome could not possibly be worse. some hundreds, maybe thousands of children could be put at risk from these bloody quacks, to add insult to the injury of losing a child that might have been saved otherwise.

  51. #51 DLC
    December 26, 2013

    Oh damn. I meant that previous post of mine for the Sarah Hershberger post immediately before this one.
    Adams, aside from supporting stupidity, blatant quackery and woo, has not yet threatened the lives of any children, except indirectly.

  52. #52 Shay
    December 26, 2013

    Hey, at least one of them brought to a halt a hopelessly broken capital-punishment system

    And a Republican, no less….

  53. #53 DLC
    Somewhere South of The North Pole
    December 26, 2013

    I just want to add, Happy Christmas, Merry Newtonmas, and a pre-emptive Happy New Year.

  54. #54 Denice Walter
    December 26, 2013

    OT But are agglomerations of alt med proselytisers several layers thick ever TRULY OT @ RI?

    @ TMR ( a Boxing Day gift without the boxes):
    Alison MacNeil and Louise Kuo Habakus of “Fearless Parent Radio” ( @ PRN, see Gary Null) , hand over the airwaves monthly to Kelly Brogan ( for “Fearless Medicine”) who discusses Jennifer Margulis’ ( The Business of Baby) take on ultrasounds, autism and Dr Casanova.

  55. #55 Dan J. Andrews
    December 26, 2013

    “We collected the profits from that effort, in other words, and instead of stuffing them into our own pockets, we made huge investments in food science research ”

    So instead of stuffing his pockets with money so he can buy toys for himself, he instead went out and bought toys for himself? Not quite sure I see the distinction, but I’m loaded with vaccines so it has no doubt clouded my faculties (or maybe it’s too many Christmas goodies that have done me in).

  56. #56 Denice Walter
    December 26, 2013

    Addendum to above:

    I am not sure about Casanova yet but alties are trying to use his research to target SBM.
    Margulis believes that ultra-sound is dangerous and has a child with an ASD. I found a reference ( her article) when searching for ultrasound and autism.
    Mac Neil has similar ideas.

  57. #57 Andreas Johansson
    December 26, 2013

    Because one of the things I’ve found in all this research is that natural product formulators are often just “wildly guessing” about the efficacy of their products.

    What’s that saying about broken watches?

    How, anyway, does one determine the efficacy of health products with atomic spectroscopy? Does he pretend to have sufficiently complete (holistic!) understanding of biochem that he can determine the efficacy of any drug simply by analyzing it’s contents? I guess I won’t be very surprised if so.

  58. #58 Physics Police
    December 26, 2013

    The most offensive part of the Twelve Days of Christmas video is the tone-deaf attempt at singing.

  59. #59 Bob G
    Los Angeles
    December 26, 2013

    @Mitch PhD

    Back before I was Bob G PhD, I was setting up an experiment which involved six time points spread out over 24 hours, followed by a slightly back-breaking extraction of radioactively labeled RNA from human mitochondria. I carefully set up the six spinner bottles of cells, added 32P orthophosphate, let it go a couple of days, and started the tritiated uridine label on what just turned out to be December 31. This went on into the night. Then I took a break and went back to my apartment to try to get a little shuteye, but also having to greet and host my brother and his wife, who came over around 6 AM to park their car and walk to the Rose Parade. That was my period of sleep — luckily the parade was five or six blocks away down Colorado Blvd, so I avoided the drums. Then they came back, collected their stuff, and I went back to do the hard part of the experiment. I’m guessing this experiment (and the various repetitions) took about 30 hours each, from the start of the tritium label to the point where the RNA received the ethanol and got stored, and all of the cleaning up got done.

    I empathize with your hours.

  60. #60 Dorothy
    December 26, 2013

    But I thought proving stuff with science was of no use to Mike Adams? I thought anecdotes were fine by him. But then he apparently only wants to “prove” that his woo is “purer” than other woo.

    OT: Has anyone noticed the absence here and elsewhere of commenter elburto? I am concerned about Ms. Trouble because I got the idea that she is quite ill.

  61. #61 Johanna
    December 26, 2013

    @Dorothy

    Fear not, an update was posted (by lilady, I think) that Mrs. Elburto is still among the living, but had been cut off from the net for a while ‘cos of broken hardware. I think lilady mentioned something about EB’s imminent return, but I could be wrong – my memory, she is not the MOST reliable…

  62. #62 Denice Walter
    December 26, 2013

    @ Physics Police:

    But but but..
    Mikey is extremely gifted in music or so he tells us ( Health Ranger.com/ profiles/ education) and has has been composing music and wacking a keyboard since childhood.

    For your …erm… *enjoyment*:
    his websites include his many efforts at rapping/ singing with such poetical offerings as “Don’t Touch My Junk” and “Vaccine Zombie” and who can ever forget his spiritualisticisms as ‘Amethrios’, inspiring us with ” We’re Doing Alright” and other otherworldly musings.

    Yes, his artform is available on the web.
    And the web never forgets.

  63. #63 lilady
    December 26, 2013

    Dorothy, I have been in touch with Elburto and she sends best wishes to all of you. Her Android needed repair and she had some health issues…now resolving.

  64. #64 Mitch, PhD
    December 27, 2013

    @Bob G

    The funny thing is, I find that there is a period of an hour or two near the 24 h mark (usually 5 or 6 AM for me) where adrenaline and a sense of euphoria take over, independent of how the experiment is actually going. It’s one of my favorite experiences and has resulted in some of my favorite memories from the lab. Hopefully, you felt the same.

  65. #65 Darwy
    Røde grøde...wait...no... Noo Inglind
    December 27, 2013

    Good ole Mikey’s been in his lab for how long now? And he still has the basic instructions for his ICP on the whiteboard?

    I notice he STILL doesn’t have a labcoat on. So much for safety for the ‘health danger’

  66. #66 Bob G
    Los Angeles
    December 28, 2013

    @Mitch PhD

    I didn’t get that “runner’s high” from lab work. I felt stress in terms of making a mistake on something, and a lot of fatigue. I do, however, remember getting that feeling after playing a two day rugby tournament, or even one good game sometimes. I do get a good feeling when we get some interesting results on a DNA microarray or, nowadays, a microRNA analysis. By the way, I did get a really good feeling after getting the last sample put away in the freezer and shutting the freezer door. Of course it’s been quite a few years, and I’ve learned to design most experiments to be less of a time drag. The one exception is doing a lot of samples for flow cytometry starting with cells and finishing with the flow. That seems to take it out of me because there are so many careful steps, and I always worry about losing cells.

  67. #67 Bob G
    Los Angeles
    December 28, 2013

    @Mitch PhD

    I should have added — To me, the really cool part was taking the data I had accumulated and doing the calculations, then plotting it and figuring something out. Sometimes that was six weeks after the initial backbreaker of an experiment, because we sometimes had to do a 4 week autoradiography. I think that modern practice, where everyone has a laptop and Excel, is not the same level of fun; it can be more, and it can be less, but it is definitely different. Back in the late pleistocene, penciling the points on the graph paper and connecting the dots was the part where the experiment had some emotional and intellectual reward. Sometimes there was scientific benefit too. I am grateful to Hewlett Packard for developing the RPN calculator system with a memory button.

  68. #68 Krebiozen
    December 28, 2013

    Anyone remember Flexicurves? They are still around, but are mostly used for measuring horses for saddle sizes these days, not for plotting calibration curves, as they were in the Pleistocene. I can remember when getting a punched paper tape out of the scintillation counter so we could get a computer to plot the curve instead was a stunning technological innovation.

  69. #69 herr doktor bimler
    December 28, 2013

    Anyone remember Flexicurves?
    And now it is all Bezier splines. Called thus, I imagine, because originally there were only Bezy splines but then the technology improved.

  70. #70 Tartu85
    December 30, 2013

    He is probably working out of an incubator, where he rents out lab space (that’s where our lab is located – we are a non-profit with 2 year old in-house lab) and has access to some shared equipment (http://www.texasbiocorridor.org/resources/incubators) – the fume hood behind him looks fully plummed.

    The longest continuous lab day for me, was approximately 27-29 hours, frantically acquiring flow cytometry data for a CIRM grant update. Among the longest experiments I have done: long-term culture initiating cell assay (LTC-IC for very early hematopoietic cells) – 6-8 weeks to read-out; SCID-hu bone assay for human hematopoietic stem cells – 4 weeks for bone recipient human bone fragments to vascularize and 4 more weeks to test engraftment of donor stem cells; and that whole little thing where I carried several human ESC lines in continuous culture for almost 2 years, characterizing them along the way to demonstrate their stability.

  71. #71 Narad
    December 31, 2013

    I am grateful to Hewlett Packard for developing the RPN calculator system with a memory button.

    Let’s not forget their Moon Rocket Lander.

  72. #72 Loren E
    January 2, 2014

    The company I work for has around 20 GC-MS and 7 LC-MS instruments and about a dozen Ph.D. level scientists interpreting the results….and this guy with his BS degree from ‘a univeristy in the midwest’ is going to deliver earth shattering results in 3 months. LOL.
    And from the NaturalNews site:
    ‘UFC’s Anderson Silva horrifying shin break in Weidman fight most likely due to chronic vitamin D deficiency via dark skin.’
    Yeah, kicking a guy’s knee full power with your shin has NOTHING to do with it. But I’ll bet they sell a Vit D supplement.

  73. #73 Denice Walter
    January 2, 2014

    Well, today Mikey announces that his new research is related to Fukushima ( Shades of PRN!), he’s been working ” 12 hour days” and that he’s being called ” the Edward Snowden of food”.
    He’s initiating a revolution in science. Natural News will become an important source of information.

    In other news, water is still wet, people are still interested in sex, nothing is really free etc.

  74. #74 Shay
    January 2, 2014

    Anyone want to start a pool? I get the box that says “Mikey launches new chemical-free, radiation-free, non-GMO line of freeze dried foods!”

  75. #75 Woo Fighter
    January 2, 2014

    In Mikey’s story on the Silva UFC injury he refers to himself as a “nutrition scientist.” Gag.

    No one seems to understand why this happened, but as a nutrition scientist, I am confident of the underlying cause: Chronic vitamin D deficiency leading to fragile bones.

  76. #76 kruuth
    January 3, 2014

    My folks watched that video with me…I like my mom’s subtlety:

    *kruuth*, that man has the crazy eyes.

  77. #77 ?
    January 9, 2014

    I subscribed to natural news several months ago and I just found this site today when I typed in nn into Google. I should have done some research on this ” Mike the health ranger ” man before. I recently checked my email from his blog about foods containing heavy metals and how much they retain. their heavy metals. http://www.naturalnews.com/043437_Metals_Retention_Factor_scientific_discoveries_food_toxicology.html

  78. #78 Antaeus Feldspar
    January 9, 2014

    ? -

    Well, the past can’t be changed, so there’s no reason to dwell on it. The important thing is that now you know that Mike can’t be relied on to tell the truth, and you have a friendly bunch of people (us!) whom you can ask if you have questions about “hmmm, is there any truth to this particular claim?”

  79. #79 Lucario
    Night in SoFla
    January 9, 2014

    ?:

    Just keep in mind when kooks like Mike Adams blather on and on about “toxins” and “heavy metals” in the foods we eat that the dose makes the poison. Did Adams even give the actual levels of heavy metals he found in the foods and supplemets he tested? If not, then run, don’t walk, away from his site as fast as possible!

  80. #80 Denice Walter
    January 9, 2014

    @ ?:

    For more on Mikey, you might want to check Rational wiki’s entry on NaturalNews, his own bio ( @ Health Ranger.com/ profile) and OBVIOUSLY the many posts our most illustrious host has assembled ( see search box above).
    I also have commented generously as I’ve followed his activities since about 2007
    .
    And strangely enough, I’m none the worse for wear, despite reading and listening to his steaming pail of tripe several times a week.
    AND I don’t juice anything at all.

  81. #81 Chuff
    January 10, 2014

    Definitely read his bio on the ‘health ranger’ website. I can’t work out if he wants some kind of psychological affirmation or is really so far down the mental pecking order that he thinks writing in the third person and claiming to have “aced” parts of the SATS makes him sound professional. For a bloke who thinks he is a scientist to not tell you what ‘science’ degree he actually obtained is frankly……not normal. Definitely some kind of psychological issue going on there.

    But then his refutation of global warming consisted of saying that the recent cold weather proved it wasn’t getting warmer.

  82. #82 Mrs Woo
    January 10, 2014

    Wow! Our foods retain all the heavy metals they come in contact with, but somehow cannot be grown in soil that imparts minerals into them. For that we need to drink mining slag from Utah?

    I’m confused now.

  83. #83 ?
    January 10, 2014

    Thanks for the reference to rational wiki. I’ve only got a high school level of my understanding of science ( graduated in 2012) and trying to increase my critical thinking skills and not always take things at face value.

  84. #84 Mrs Woo
    January 10, 2014

    After reading his big announcement, I see a glaring assumption: it is that all foods contain a ton of heavy metals, and somehow his favorites “retain” them while the rest poison us more.

    Can he be entirely certain that, for instance, the corn for the corn chips had significant heavy metals to start with? SMH

    And I don’t even have an exceedingly long or extensive college education.

  85. #85 disumbrationist
    January 16, 2014

    Yeah, his claims aren’t even worth considering until he presents his methodology and results. He’s got a nice new toy, but let’s see if he can use it.

  86. […] spice to be bizarre and alien fibers responsible for Morgellon’s disease, I was hoping for, as I put it, comedy gold and blog fodder […]

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