Friday Woo

Respectful Insolence

Category archives for Friday Woo

In retrospect, I feel a little guilty about last week’s edition of Your Friday Dose of Woo. As a couple of commenters pointed out, the guy responsible for the woo seems as though he’s a bit disturbed, as evidenced by the ransom note-style literature on his website and the news story that mentioned how his…

Some woo is very, very complicated. The reason, of course, is that the often self-contradicting complexity of this sort of woo serves to make it harder for people without specialized training to figure out easily that it makes no sense scientifically. It’s more a matter of baffling ‘em with bullshit than because such complexity is…

Your Friday Dose of Woo: Reprogram your DNA!

DNA is an amazing molecule. How evolution could have, over eons, fashioned such an amazingly simple yet complex method of storing biological information and coding the proteins that carry out the functions of life is one of the great wonders of biology. Harnessing the power of DNA, through genetic engineering, the study of the genome,…

Woo-meisters will not be pleased. While perusing this week’s Skeptics’ Circle, I was reminded of something that I had meant to post about a couple of days ago. I don’t know how he did it or where he got it, but somehow he has found the Holy of Holies for woos everywhere. He found The…

Over the last 15 months that this regular Friday feature has been in existence, I’ve come across some real doozies in the world of woo. Who could forget, for example, quantum gyroscopic theories of homeopathy? Or the DNA activation guy? Or the “no plane” conspiracy theory of 9/11? Or a certain disgusting “feedback loop” for…

In looking back at all the various bizarre incarnations of woo that I’ve covered during the last year or so since I started doing Your Friday Dose of Woo, I was wondering if there was a form of woo that I had not covered yet. Woo seems to come in several forms, such as energy…

As I usually do on Thursday nights, I was perusing my legendary Folder of Woo looking for just the thing to be interesting and entertaining to both me as the blogger and you as the reader. As happens occasionally, nothing was really doing it for me. Nothing was getting me fired up to launch into…

Earlier this week, I deconstructed a truly inane article on Mike Adams NewsTarget website espousing dangerous cancer quackery, with claims that herbal concoctions alone could “naturally heal” cancer. Such a claim wouldn’t have attracted bringing the hammer of Respectful Insolence™ down if there had been some actual evidence presented that this healer could do what…

Your Friday Dose of Woo: Link me up, Q-man!

I debated about whether to do Your Friday Dose of Woo this week. I really wasn’t sure if I was up to it. As regular readers know, I was on vacation in London during the last week in August. Unfortunately, I returned to the news of a death in the family on my wife’s side,…

Your Friday Dose of Woo…

…is still on vacation in London. It will return next week. I will mention, however, that I managed to find time to take a stroll by the Royal London Homeopathic Hospital the other day. No, the fabric of space-time was not torn, but, sadly, I didn’t work up the gumption to enter the building because…

So, after nearly two weeks of torturing myself trying to put together an R01-level grant on short notice and make it actually competitive, I’m finally free. The grant has been submitted (amazingly, the online submission process went through without a hitch), and, sleep-deprived but still hopped up on the Sudafed that kept the mucus membranes…

After over a year of doing Your Friday Dose of Woo, I can’t believe I’ve never come across this one before. Sometimes there’s a bit of woo that comes my way that’s so off the wall, so unexpected, the claims for which are so unrelated to reality that it startles even me. Moreover, unlike truly…

Unfortunately, I was way too busy this week to come up with a new edition of Your Friday Dose of Woo. However, there’s still stuff to be mined from the ancient history of this blog, stuff that most of you, my readers, have probably not seen. This one, for instance, dates back nearly two years…

Your Friday Dose of Woo: Five years

Time is important. Our life is measured in it, and there’s no way to reverse it. How we use our allotted time on this planet is, of course, the most important question that anyone ever faces. But how to measure time? It all seems so obvious, doesn’t it? You have years, which are divided into…

After over a year of delving into the world of woo, I had been starting to think that my ability to be surprised had disappeared. I mean, just think about it. After dealing with things like DNA activation, quantum homeopathy, the Healing Broom, Healing Sounds, and, of course, colon cleansing and liver flushing, I thought…

Cool cool water. Yes, that’s what I really needed earlier this week, as the temperature almost hit 100° F in my neck of the woods. There’s nothing like it after walking through the sauna-like conditions and losing my precious bodily fluids in the form of sweat. After all, I wouldn’t want to get dehydrated, would…

It was a rough day yesterday. I spent a long time in the O.R. It was one of those days that I couldn’t figure out what happened. The number of operations that I had to do should have allowed me to finish operating by around 2 PM, leaving me time to do other things that…

Here’s something I’ve wanted to try for a while now. It’ll either be wildly successful and popular, along the lines of You Might Be an Altie If…, or it’ll be an utter failure, sinking into oblivion. Which one it ends up being will be up to you, O faithful readers of Your Friday Dose of…

In my rigid, Western, scientific way of thinking, things generally have a beginning, a middle, and and end, the arrow of time marching relentlessly onward. However, it occurs to me that this is the very last edition of Your Friday Dose of Woo of its first year. Last June, when I started this, almost on…

Your Friday Dose of Woo: An iPod of woo

Alright, now they’ve gone too far. I can take a lot from woo-meisters. I can watch them claim that water has some sort of “memory” and that diluting a compound to nonexistence somehow seemingly by magic makes it more powerful and chuckle at their silliness. I can listen to them claim that by “alkalinizing your…

As we continue our countdown to having reached one full year of woo (namely, the one year anniversary of Your Friday Dose of Woo), it’s occurred to me that there’s one form of woo that I’ve dealt with before, but haven’t revisited. It’s a bit of woo that’s so monumentally silly that it’s hard to…

Your Friday Dose of Woo: Woo ascends

Let’s face it, energy woo can get boring. It’s always “resonance this” and “vibration that,” to the point that it all starts to sound the same. Such is the reason that I’ve become somewhat reluctant to take on more energy woo for Your Friday Dose of Woo. It takes a truly bizarre bit of energy…

One of the banes of a physician’s existence is not so much keeping up with changes in how medicine is practiced, studying new treatments, and following the medical literature. After all, that comes with the territory; it’s part of the job. Failure to keep up is to become increasingly ineffective and even to risk malpractice…

I want to apologize to Abel Pharmboy in advance on this one. This is the second time in less than three months that I’ve invaded his territory to a certain extent in Your Friday Dose of Woo, specifically his The Friday Fermentable feature. Last time around, I couldn’t believe it when I encountered some serious…

Remember the SCIO? It was featured in Your Friday Dose of Woo two weeks ago. It’s an amazingly woo-ey piece of woo that was just perfect for my little weekly feature. Unfortunately, not everyone appreciates my having a little fun with it. For example, one of the woomeisters responsible for the SCIO has appeared on…