The Woo Boat

File this one under the category: You can’t make stuff like this up. (At least, I can’t.)

Let’s say you’re a die hard all-conspiracy conspiracy theorist and alternative medicine believer (a not uncommon combination). You love Alex Jones and Mike Adams and agree with their rants that there is a New World Order trying to suppress your rights. You strongly believe that vaccines not only cause autism, sudden infant death syndrome, a shaken baby-like syndrome, autoimmune diseases, sudden ovarian failure, and even outright death but are a depopulation plot hatched by Bill Gates and the Illuminati who support his agenda. Heck, you even believe that black helicopters are keeping an eye on those who have discovered this plot. To you, genetically modified organisms (GMOs) are part of the same plot, pure poison and pure evil. And, of course, you just know that there is a cure for cancer—nay, cures for all diseases—out there but those evil pharmaceutical companies are keeping them from the people, the better to bolster their profits, just as they are preventing Brave Maverick Doctors like Andrew Wakefield, Mark Geier, and Sherri Tenpenny from telling the world the truth about vaccines. Heck, you just know that these same nefarious forces are even going so far as to kill vaccine “skeptic” heroes like Jeff Bradstreet (and, of course, make it look like a suicide) and holistic “pioneers” like Nicholas Gonzalez (and make it look like a heart attack).

And you like cruises.

So where do you go when you want to go on a cruise? Normal cruises are filled with people who just want to have a good time and tend to roll their eyes when you regale them with your ideas about how there is a shadowy conspiracy out there that is promoting toxic pharmaceuticals and vaccines and preventing natural cures from being used by the people, while simultaneously promoting GMOs to make people sick so that they think they need more of those pharmaceuticals and vaccines and more pliable so that their New World Order agenda faces less opposition. By the time you get to how they’re also using chemtrails as another means of control, AIDS is not caused by HIV, and ebola can be cured with homeopathy, in other words, by the time you’ve been on the cruise a couple of days, you’ll find yourself basically shunned, eating alone at dinner, and drinking alone at the bar. When you sit down at a table, everyone suddenly finds a reason to be elsewhere.

Fear not! There is now a cruise for you. See the Conspira-Sea Cruise next January, embarking in Los Angeles and taking you on a cruise through the Mexican Riviera:

Our “Conspira-Sea Cruise and Seminar-at-Sea” takes place right on our luxury cruise ship during our seven-day cruise, in conference rooms on the ship, and during our port calls in Mexico.

During this incredible, mind-blowing, truth-telling, spiritually enriching event, we will do our best to uncover the truth about things conspiratorial, including:

GMOs, Monsanto, bee colony collapse, ecology, global warming, climate change, fracking, HIV, autism, big pharma, medical suppression, vaccinations, flouridation, political corruption, government corruption, forbidden archeology, forbidden religion, Federal Reserve, truth about money, World Bank, IRS, strawman, property title, admiralty law, martial law, Bohemian Grove, Skull and Bones, JFK, cover-ups, September 11, Star Wars agenda, nuclear plants, chemtrails, HAARP, crop circles, IRS, MK-Ultra, Fukashima, NASA, NSA, Bilderbergs, sustainability, military industrial complex, pentagon, Waco, Malaysia 370, Pan Am 103, TWA 800, Gulf Oil Spill, Halliburton, Obama, Ruby Ridge, OK City, Vatican, New World Order, false flags, Montauk, privacy, surveillance, Area 51, Dulce, Project Rainbow, Nazi Bell, Vrill, U.S.S. Eldridge, Iron Mountain, psyops, population mangement, subliminal ads, Nibiru / Planet X, Cointel Pro, technology suppression, entity possession, electoral fraud, identity chips, 2nd amendment, and so much more.

Plus we will explore how to heal ourselves and others, and to attain self-mastery and greater integrity through:

Spirituality, meditation, affirmation, prayer, yoga, manifestation, self-development, holistic health, alternative lifestyles, organic foods, healthy living, wellness, self-sufficiency, prosperity, sustainability, freedom, human rights, discernment, wisdom, awakening, longevity, inner guidance, and inner peace.

The purpose of this cruise is NOT about being a victim of conspiracies. It is about taking back our power from corrupt and greedy institutions, attaining true self-authority, and realizing our genuine Self behind the masks. It is about discovering the truth, taking command of our lives, and attaining genuine inner realization.

This cruise will not only uncover the lies. It will show us the truth. As we dispell the darkness, and shine the light of wisdom, we enter the true light of consciousness.

When I first saw this link, I really thought that it had to be a joke, a Poe of some sort. There really couldn’t be a cruise like this, could there? Then I looked at the company organizing the cruise, Divine Travels, which advertises itself as a “gateway to spirtual adventures,” and I had to admit that this Conspira-Sea Cruise is legit and fits right in with Divine Travels’ other cruises, which are loaded with woo, such as a tour of Egypt with Cindy Reed, an energy/spiritual healer, a New Age retreat where you can learn “spiritual healing,” and more. In this case, Divine Travels has outdone itself. Look at this preliminary speaker list. There are antivaccinationists, such as Andrew Wakefield, who, hilariously is listed as a “Vaccination & Autism Researcher”; Sherry Tenpenny, who is listed accurately as an “Anti-Vaccine Activist”; and Toni Bark, described as a “Vaccination Whistleblower.” I know Tenpenny and Wakefield’s activities well, but I didn’t remember who Toni Bark is. So I Googled her and quickly found her website—and with it, some serious quackery, including homeopathy, something called “lipodissolve,” links to quack movies like Gary Null’s Silent Epidemic: The Untold Story of Vaccines, and several appearances on The Gary Null Show.

OK, she fits right in, and I did start to remember her when I saw her picture. For some reason, I don’t recall ever having blogged about her before.

But, hey, you say. Antivaccine conspiracy theories just aren’t my thing. No problem! How about alt-med conspiracy theories. In addition to Toni Bark doing double duty on vaccines and general alt-med craziness, one of my “favorite” quacks (and by “favorite” I mean favorite target of mockery), Robert O. Young, the man who thinks all cancer is due to excess acidity and that his “alkaline diet” will cure cancer and all serious diseases will be there. So will Len Horowitz and Sherry Kane. Horowitz advertises himself as “The King David of Natural Healing” versus “The Goliath of ‘Slash, Burn, and Poison’ Medicine,” while Sherri Kane is a journalist who works with him spreading his message, describing herself as an “investigative journalist, news commentator, psycho-social analyst, and political activist, specializing in uncovering media persuasion and manipulation, conspiracy realities and women’s, children’s, and animal rights issues.” Together, they are collaborating on “Healthy World Organization (HWO), the alternative to the corrupt World Health Organization (WHO), HealthyWorldAffiliates.com, and The 528 Love Revolution advancing the power of the “528 hz” frequency of Love and Healing for a Musical Revolution and Spiritual Renaissance with 528Records.com and i528tunes.com.”

He’s also affiliated Medical Veritas, if you remember that. I sure do, particularly its cancer quackery and HIV/AIDS denialism.

But that’s not all! There are (of course!) anti-GMO activists like Jeffery Smith; HIV/AIDS denialsts, such as Robert Strecker; and “holistic healers” like Dale Allen Hoffman and Dr. Dream. But, hey, medicine isn’t your conspiracy topic. For you, there are—of course!—a whole bevy of “spiritual teachers.” But that’s not all. Don’t think other woo has been forgotten! Oh, no! There are “paranormal investigators,” an “earth advocate” and “global alchemist” (whatever thatmeans) named Laura Eisenhower, and near death experience survivors. There’s Nick Begich, conspiracy theorist who believes that HAARP is a form of mind control. If that’s not woo-ful enough for you, they even have a chemtrails researcher named Sharon Schloss, a crop circle maven named Patty Greer, and an astrologist named Helen Sewell. Truly, I’m hard pressed to think of a form of quackery, pseudoscience, or paranormal nonsense. Oh, wait. There’s no cryptozoology, no Bigfoot maven. Well, it’s still early. Maybe they’ll find someone.

Of course, there are testimonials from previous Spiritual Travels cruises, such as:

“The panel of speakers was by far the best attribute of the trip. The speakers covered a wide array of topics… everything from Angel wings to the modern Nazi regime. It was all around enlightenment.”–D.R.M., Wyoming

“Enlightenment” isn’t quite the word I’d use to describe such a cruise.

When it was suggested to me that a skeptic should sign up for this cruise, I pointed out two things that would disqualify me. First, I’d have to waste vacation time. Second, Andrew Wakefield provokes such a visceral response in me that being in his actual physical presence, particularly on a ship, might actually make me physically ill. Come to think of it, the same can be said of Robert O. Young. Also, as people who know me know, although I would certainly be amused by some of these speakers, I am not very good at hiding my contempt for quacks like Wakefield and Young. After all, a skeptic mole would have to be able to avoid getting kicked off the boat!

Still, if there are any intrepid souls willing to do this, maybe a Go Fund Me page would be able to provide the travel and cruise expenses. I’m sure there’d be blogging material for many weeks. Heck, there might even be enough material for a book!

Comments

  1. #1 Gray Squirrel
    August 18, 2015

    Re. Sadmar @ 178, “….Sovereign Citizens…”: A particular type of right-wing ideology that denies the validity of government above the level of counties, and whose adherents are known to drive with hand-lettered license plates (because “state gov is not legitimate”), and shoot the cops who pull them over for it.

    Their tendency to shoot cops has made Sovereign Citizens a high priority for FBI & other LE agencies to keep an eye on, so the presence of one of their leaders on this cruise will virtually ensure the presence of at least two undercover (“u/c”) officers or agents. That should be good for some extra paranoia on the part of the other attendees.

    I was going to suggest that someone might want to do some “street theater” by getting together with a few friends and dressing up as “men in black” or whatever, and standing around the boarding area for the cruise, talking into their wristwatches and so on, as the passengers arrive. But if there are Sovereign Citizens in the mix, then there will be real u/c around to watch ’em, and skeptics w/ humorous intent might want to avoid stirring that particular pot.

    What I wouldn’t give to read the daily reports on the behaviors of these persons-of-interest and those who hang out with them!

    Re. Chris @ 19: alcohol hand-sanitizer before entering cruise ship eating areas: That’s a good start, but alcohol-based preparations are known to not kill C.Diff. But C.Diff or not C.Diff (that is the question;-), with all the Norovirus going around, you couldn’t pay me to get on a cruise ship, even if all the passengers and crew had to line up at a sink and wash their hands with strong soap & water before each meal.

    Re. psychedelic mushrooms: The Amanitas appear to be deliriant rather than psychedelic. Psilocybe species are psychedelic, per the active ingredient, psilocybin. Psilocybe mushrooms are sacred to adherents of certain native Mesoamerican traditions, who believe that they provide a means of direct contact between individuals and the deity.

    When Swiss psychopharmacologist Albert Hofmann first synthesized psilocybin based on a sample of the mushrooms collected by (R. Gordon Wasson, if memory serves), he gave some of the synthetic psilocybin to an elderly shaman, who told him, “yes, you have brought the spirit of the mushroom into your pink pill.” Nice example of how science and an ancient religious tradition were able to cooperate in a spirit of mutual respect. Today’s adherents of herbal medicine would do well to welcome Big Pharma to seek out whatever active compounds might exist in their herbs (pharmacognosy), but they don’t, and we have much to say about that in these pages.

    One of the more recent (in the last decade) FDA-approved human subject research protocols for psychedelics is: 30 milligrams of psilocybin, lie on a couch listening to classical (or other instrumental) music over good stereo headphones while wearing dark eyeshades, with a psychiatrist standing by for supervision and intervention if needed. This appears to produce profoundly meaningful experiences that are typically described in religious terms. It would be interesting to see how that translates for atheists (seriously).

    In an unsupervised setting, lower doses are useful as an aid to creativity and deep reflection on any subject of interest. That would mean approx. 1 gram of dried psilocybe mushrooms. OTOH spending a day deeply engaged in thought, is quite “psychedelic” in and of itself, without need of mushrooms or various compounds.

    Interrobang @ 172: I was wondering why the promoters of this thing hadn’t said “Teh Jewish Conspiracy” in so many words, but maybe they’re hinting at it with a wink-nudge or a dog whistle that only other anti-Semites can hear?

    Lastly an optimistic speculation:

    At one point in his career, psychiatrist Milton Erickson was in charge of a hospital psychiatric ward, where two of the patients each believed himself to be Jesus Christ. One day Erickson arranged for these two patients to meet. The patients spent the day arguing with each other over which one of them was the real Jesus Christ. The next day each of them approached Erickson to say that they’d finally realized, for the first time, that they were crazy.

    So the moral of that story is, perhaps when the Conspira Sea Cruize returns home, a decent number of the passengers, having encountered others quite like themselves in most ways, will also recognize that in the end they were crazy. One can hope.

  2. #2 herr doktor bimler
    August 18, 2015

    sample of the mushrooms collected by (R. Gordon Wasson, if memory serves)

    The mycophilia / mycophagia circles I mix with have been abuzz with recent realisations that Gordon Wasson simply made up a lot of his ancient shamanic mushroom traditions, and there is no ethnological value in his books. At least the realisations were recent to me.

  3. #3 Denice Walter
    August 18, 2015

    In other woo-centric news.. conspiracies with no boats involved

    – Jake ( Autism Investigated, today), to the delight of his commenters, writes about our most benevolent and sagacious host:
    ” Anybody who thinks that G—– and others like him in social and news media are not intentionally distorting facts to help the CDC cover up facts about vaccine risks is simply a fool.”

    – Mikey ( Natural News, today) has discovered that he is indeed prescient because his vivid dream, as described a few days ago, just CAME TRUE** even the ( magical) number showed up*** in events that transpired in reality
    He’s a prophet who profits from his proffering.

    – Commenters on Dachel’s post ( AoA) about Silberman’s new book are not exactly thrilled with its subject matter or its author .I’m sure that Dan will be especially miffed as it reflects upon the subject matter of his book.

    Thus, minions, if we give them enough time, I’m confident that they’ll find a way to implicate ALL of us into these dreadful plots, subterfuges, cover-ups and malfeasance in the service of Whomever

    Ah yes, the world is a bizarre place to those amongst us who are not blessed with a capacity for self-criticism.

    ** except he got a few minor details wrong like the religion involved, the country involved, his own actions in the dream, false flags etc .
    Mike, people can go back and check your predicitons.
    *** if you look hard enough and twist the news enough

  4. #4 Dangerous Bacon
    August 18, 2015

    Congrats to Orac for being recognized (once again) by Jake.

    But did we ever congratulate our fearless leader on achieving a #4 ranking in Sharyl Atkisson’s list of Top Ten Astroturfers?

    https://sharylattkisson.com/top-10-astroturfers/

    True, he has to share honors at the #4 spot with other “science” blogs (the “scare quotes” are Atkisson’s).

    This list of Top Ten Astroturfers (signifying secret payouts by Big Whatever to manipulate the minds of readers for nefarious purposes) has to be bona fide, since it stems from a poll of 169 Twitter respondents, and all Twitterians who follow Atkisson undoubtedly have the facts to back up their suspicions. Along with science/skeptic bloggers, there’s a wide slice of major mainstream media on the list, along with Mother Jones (which as we know has long been in thrall to major corporations).

  5. #5 palindrom
    August 18, 2015

    DB@204 — The idea of Mother Jones being in the thrall of major corporations reminds me of this recent Onion article on Bernie Sanders:

    “Tanned, exquisitely coiffed Bernie Sanders tells supporters corporations actually have a lot to offer”

    http://www.theonion.com/article/tanned-exquisitely-coiffed-bernie-sanders-tells-su-50589

  6. #6 Cate K
    August 18, 2015

    Surely if your own personal Belief System shows up in that list of lunacy then it must make you question its truth? Or is that too hopeful and people attending will actually think, “Well, all those fools believe in the lizard people but I know that’s just a conspiracy started by Big Pharma to conceal the actual truth about how vaccines are being used to cull the population!”?

    I really like the idea of a parallel skeptic cruise and was going to suggest the same thing. Apart from the potential head-messing fun anyone trying to counter this misinformation deserves a luxury holiday.

  7. #7 Denice Walter
    August 18, 2015

    Oh Dangerous One:

    That list includes WAY too many items to be a ‘top 10’, wouldn’t you say?
    But she didn’t want to leave anyone out.

  8. #8 Denice Walter
    August 18, 2015

    @ Cate K:

    As someone who used to attend various new age events and woo-meisterly presentations, I must say that it’s hard work to suppress laughter and automatic eye-rolling- it can be exhausting if the idiot goes on for hours. And they do.

    Incredibly, the woo/ altie in charge usually reels off lunacy at such a quick pace that I wouldn'[t recommend a week long excursion.

  9. #9 Calli Arcale
    http://fractalwonder.wordpress.com
    August 18, 2015

    Alex:

    So, how about we try to block buy a section of the ship for a skeptics cruise? Seriously, if I was independently wealthy, I would totally do that for the fun of being able to create those easel stand things that promoted lectures like “The truth behind vaccines” to lure them unsuspectingly into lectures that present them with the stuff they so badly do not want to hear.

    You don’t have to be independently wealthy to do that. You just have to be able to sell enough people on the idea to get the trip funded. 😉 The price would be the cost of a cabin on board plus enough to cover the expenses of any guests that you book. It really is just like any other convention.

    The tricky part to doing it at the same time as this would be a) making sure there is enough space on the same cruise and b) finding out about their event far enough in advance to be able to book the same cruise. 😉

    So, if there are any travel agents among the group, you could totally arrange something like that.

  10. #10 Not a Troll
    August 18, 2015

    I’ll give Jake Crosby this: I can actually read at his website without wanting to claw my eyes out from the poor visual design and navigation that you find at Age of Autism, Natural News and a few others I’ve had the misfortune to land on. (I know, emoticons here, but those can be avoided. Besides, this is a pleasant site to view and it has the best site search relevancy of any I’ve ever used ).

    To Denice, and others, who visit these awful websites I applaud your fortitude in subjecting yourself to that visual abuse in order to update everyone here.

    Also, did I miss something in Mike Adams dream where he writes it was a Christian campus but happened at a Hindu shrine?

    For the rest of the article, the machinations he uses to match his dream to the event reminds me of a special on the History or Discovery channel (?) on the prophecies of Nostradamus and what twisted logic needed to be applied to pull any relationships out of them.

  11. #11 Renate
    August 18, 2015

    But did we ever congratulate our fearless leader on achieving a #4 ranking in Sharyl Atkisson’s list of Top Ten Astroturfers?

    On 8 we find the Huffington Post, which strikes me as a bit ironic, considering how our beloved host considers it.

  12. #12 Dr. Johnson
    August 18, 2015

    Poor Laura Eisenhower is President Eisenhower’s great granddaughter. It’s really sad to see how people like this “Dr. Dream the Holistic Healer” feed her delusions instead of helping her. http://americanloons.blogspot.com/2013/07/644-laura-magdalene-eisenhower.html

    Really, you can’t make this stuff up.

  13. #13 Dr. Johnson
    August 18, 2015

    @Not a troll, you did read correctly about Mike Adams.

    He also solved the Chinese explosion: http://www.naturalnews.com/050816_Tianjin_explosion_space-based_weapons_military_retaliation.html

  14. #14 shay
    August 18, 2015

    Wow, Eisenhower and her flying monkeys have really infested the comments section of that post.

    (Completely OT, a few years ago I had to review resumes for an internship from two applicants named Eisenhauer and Nimtz. I wanted to hire both just for the enjoyment I’d get out of introducing them at meetings).

  15. #15 rs
    August 18, 2015

    “Mikey ( Natural News, today) has discovered that he is indeed prescient because his vivid dream, as described a few days ago, just CAME TRUE** even the ( magical) number showed up*** in events that transpired in reality”

    I once dreamed that 2+2=5. Upon awakening I found that my computer had crashed. Coincidence?

    “I really like the idea of a parallel skeptic cruise and was going to suggest the same thing.”

    That would almost certainly require sailing on an ocean with a non-Euclidean geometry.

  16. #16 Roger Kulp
    August 18, 2015

    Sadmar@ 200

    Lose the hyphen.
    ; ) = 😉

  17. #17 Denice Walter
    August 18, 2015

    @ Not a Troll:

    Thank you for your kind words.

    To be perfectly honest, I am sometimes extremely entertained by their idiocy and obviously mercenary activities.

    Many of the sites are indeed ugly. I think Jake’s isn’t quite as bad because there is so little material on it,

    Although there is certainly *visual* madness, let’s not forget the terrible auditory manoeuverings resident at sites like NN ( Mike also produces music videos and lessons in various woo) , PRN ( the daily crapfest is, after all, radio), AoA/ TMR include video as well. Sometimes difficulties in verbal thought are more apparent in the spoken word than in the written one

    About my own welfare despite immersion in woo-ful propaganda:
    no one should worry, I am breathtakingly immune to its deleterious effects. I believe that I inherited the capacity to discern and be resilient against BS, advertising and mindless brainwashing because I am descended from a long line of business folk who managed to survive despite their exposure to prodigious amounts of similar tripe over the past ( at least) century or so,

    As my late father would frequently say gleefully:
    ” Oh look, at this incredible line of crap they’re trying to push onto people!”

  18. #18 herr doktor bimler
    August 18, 2015

    “I really like the idea of a parallel skeptic cruise and was going to suggest the same thing.”
    That would almost certainly require sailing on an ocean with a non-Euclidean geometry.

    Reimannian geometry — there are no parallel lines to cruise along.

  19. #19 Narad
    August 18, 2015

    Yeah, it’s obnoxious. I have been known to use an emoticon on rare occasions, but the annoying cartoon things look horrendous

    This wasn’t my point; the new appearances are non-BMP code points. They don’t render at all for me – all I see is a box with the six-digit Unicode hex in it. On the other hand, when Orac uses an emoticon, it’s actually rendered as a GIF (these have also recently been restyled from large and yellow to petite and orange).

    I don’t particularly mind simple graphical, rather than text, emoticons at this point (so long as they’re not animated); overuse is simply a reflection of the level of thought put into the comment by its author.

    (I have a friend who works in the German department and uses smileys very liberally in his emails, etc. It’s actually sort of adorable coming from a 40-something year old German (by way of Singapore) man.)

    In fact, the first instance of this phenomenon that I noticed was from a German commenter, which is why I was curious about how they were being injected, given that it seemed to be inconsistent.

    It instead seems to be a (still weirdly inconsistent) case of the IT version of Intelligent Design, or something. Perhaps Orac’s seeing some sort of graphical dashboard when replying that has buttons to insert the GIFs. I can’t sift the HTML for the instantiations right at the moment.

    DRLP [sic]: Don’t expect that your emoticons are going to successfully appear for all readers in the post–Emoji plugin era.

  20. #20 Not a Troll
    August 18, 2015

    Narad,

    I mostly don’t know what you are talking about with the non-BMP code but I can say that all of the images are .pngs for me.

    I don’t know if this helps but I found that the smileys and frowns (including Oracs) img srcs are hitting http://scienceblogs.com/insolence/wp-includes/images/…… while the winkeys are img class “emoji” and their src is hitting http://s.w.org/images/……

  21. #21 Gray Squirrel
    August 18, 2015

    Herr doktor bimler @ 202:

    Re. charges that Wasson made up most/all of it: Most interesting! How did that come to light, and where can I find out more? It’s not in the Wikipedia article yet, but if it turns out to be correct, it should be included. Damn!, that is highly disappointing.

    Two items related to Wasson remain fact as far as I know: that Wasson provided samples of mushrooms to Hofmann, and that Hofmann successfully synthesized psilocybin. But if Wasson didn’t get his mushrooms from a native practitioner, who else could have told him which ones were the correct species? So it’s reasonable to infer that he did have some assistance from local peoples, and then he embellished the stories and then made up other stories.

    Hofmann worked for Big Pharma: Sandoz Pharmaceuticals, lately renamed Novartis (running away from their history?;-) Psilocybin was produced by Sandoz under the trade name Indocybin, and Sandoz LSD was more famously known by the trade name Delysid. Sandoz freely gave out samples of both of these to psychiatrists, hoping they would find clinical uses. At the time (1950s – mid 1960s), there was much excitement about psychedelics contributing to the emerging paradigm that mental illnesses were reducible to neurochemistry, and then later, that creativity and religious inspiration could be studied in a similar way.

    If it turns out to be true that Wasson fabricated a bunch of his material, he ends up in the same category as Carlos Castaneda: what they wrote would have been good fiction (or perhaps great fiction in some circles), but by claiming it was fact, they disgraced themselves as frauds.

    As far as I know, Hofmann was scrupulously honest, as was Sasha Shulgin (developer of well over a hundred new psychedelics and entactogens; I knew him when he was alive, he was world-class brilliant), and Humphrey Osmond (Canadian psychiatrist who launched Aldous Huxley on his first voyage with mescaline, which became the subject of _The Doors of Perception_), and Huxley himself was a leading mind of the 20th century. These guys were oldschool intellectuals and true Renaissance minds, with legitimate educations and achievements, and broad background in the sciences and humanities.

    I have to wonder why it is that Wasson, Castaneda, and others, went way overboard. Probably some combination of quasi-religious zealotry and desire for worldly benefits such as fame and status. These outcomes, and their contrast to the works of Hofmann, Shulgin, and others, point to the need for serious caution, self-skepticism, and checks & balances, among everyone who has a legitimate academic or clinical interest in psychedelics, whether from the perspective of cog sci & psychology, psychiatry, comparative religion, the arts & literature, or other.

    (I used to think these compounds should be reclassified to FDA Schedule III, but lately I’ve been more inclined to believe that Schedule II would be appropriate by way of reducing the risk of quacks getting involved. Credit to Orac & others here for pointing out the pervasive opportunism of quackery time and time again. The generalization applies, don’t leave tempting things around where quacks might get at them. Schedule II should be a reasonable way to minimize that risk.)

  22. #22 Julian Frost
    Gauteng East Rand
    August 19, 2015

    Re Wasson: that’s quite…interesting. He was one of the first people to call out Castaneda, according to Wikipedia. And now he appears to himself be a fraud.

  23. #23 Mrs Woo
    August 20, 2015

    You guys should send me and Mr Woo. The wife of a True Believer would never be suspected… 😉

  24. #24 sadmar
    (Totally O.T.) Trivia!
    August 24, 2015

    Since there are mycophiles here:

    Can you name this mycophile?

    A 20th-century American avant-garde ‘master’ he made virtually no money from his celebrated creative works – living in poverty until the late 1950s – at which time he co-founded the New York Mycological Society, and began to generate a modest income by supplying (edible) mushrooms to elite New York restaurants. The income was enhanced when he appeared on an Italian ’21’-type guiz show as a mushroom expert.

    Each week, [he] answered, with deadly accuracy, increasingly obscure questions about mushrooms. On his final appearance, he was asked to list “the twenty-four kinds of white-spore mushrooms listed in Atkinson.” [He] named them all, in alphabetical order, and won eight thousand dollars.

  25. #25 herr doktor bimler
    August 24, 2015

    I haven’t checked the Goofle but I’m guessing Cage.

  26. #26 Gilbert
    the Loaffe Barge
    August 25, 2015

    Y’all won’t be laughing anymore when we induce our somnolent solfeggio kitty signal onto the otherwise discordant, apathetic and chaos inducing drull of your typical world-encompassing Haarpagram.

    http://mynoise.net/NoiseMachines/catPurrNoiseGenerator.php

    ======================

    There is a strange, artificial signal permeating all of us. It seems to whisper ‘sleep’ insomuch as it sometimes doesn’t:

    If one happened to live near high-tension transmission lines and, for some reason, took a 9-inch hoop degaussing coil and hooked it up to an input on an old Denon amp, he would hear a pleasant 60 cycle hum.

    If he took a second coil and placed it in series and antiparallel* to the first, his hum is cancelled and this strange, airy, quavering tone is left. The tone is often punctuated with sounds of old tarbell cassette transfere, to cicadas, to that special Jody Foster ‘Contact’ sound.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5vFwTJ44lFw

    Curious… Why would somebody abuse a consumer electronic component like that?? That’s beside the point. People do. Anyways, the sounds turn out to be PLC (powerline carrier communication) and a 2kh tone as part of ‘fault detection’.

    I’ve run into the sound off and on without ever realizing what it was; I’d always attributed the somewhat soothing, shifting tone to parasitic oscillations. But could it be used for mind control? I suppose, given the lack of deguassing ring detectors, that they could take over the world somehow.

    What I find really, really interesting is that most anything on Ambient Sleeping Pill goes perfectly with it; Pleasing harmonic symbiosis and punctus contra punctum all potted together into one masterpiece of serinderpitudinal symphony. How did that happen??
    http://ambientsleepingpill.com/

    *that is to say, at right angles to each other. Interestingly, the coil only picks up the hum when horizontal. Even the single coil ‘nulls out’ along any axis except obvious transformers; I take it there is some interplay between the house wiring and the transmission lines. One flipped opposite polarity cancels, as expected.

    The non-colocated, opposite polarity arrangement gives surprising amplification and fidelity to a cellphone playing music inside one of the hoops.

  27. #27 rs
    August 25, 2015

    “But could it be used for mind control?”

    It’s certainly controlling your mind.

  28. #28 Gilbert
    san hosey
    August 27, 2015

    Come on, rs; Can’t you feel it??

    Do you know what Bobby Ray Innman was doing before he was runnin’ the microelectronics and the computer tech corporation? A CIA director. It’s public knowledge.

    Do you run out of Kleenex, paper towels, and toilet paper at the same time? You know it’s true!

    Puzzlin’ Evidence

  29. #29 Don Alverzo
    Target 2
    August 31, 2015

    I see that nobody is on board to talk about Orgone Energy, so another topic neglected. I see the woo pitchers have taken a page out of the book of the $cientologists, who own their own cruise ship (the Freewinds, a 50 year old rust bucket they’ve owned for 30 years, but they use slave labor to keep it looking presentable), which they use to deliver “high level courses” and since they have so few members now, apparently also rent out for other “seminars.” http://tonyortega.org/2015/08/31/home-sweet-freewinds-we-get-a-rare-look-inside-a-scientology-promotional-seminar/ The good thing about the ship format from their point of the view is that they can squeeze the rubes for money, and they have nowhere to run away to, they are trapped on board the boat.

  30. #30 Colin
    http://www.gofundme.com/ss29jrfk
    September 2, 2015

    “Still, if there are any intrepid souls willing to do this, maybe a Go Fund Me page would be able to provide the travel and cruise expenses. I’m sure there’d be blogging material for many weeks. Heck, there might even be enough material for a book!”

    Challenge accepted: http://www.gofundme.com/ss29jrfk

    I’m planning a very non-confrontational approach, so please don’t expect shouting and “gotcha!” questions. I have interviewed people with very strange ideas before, and vastly prefer establishing a good relationship. I would appreciate your assistance, even if it’s just spreading the link, and your thoughts.

  31. #31 Chris
    September 9, 2015

    Bump… Go, Colin, go!

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