Entelev, CanCell, and Cantron: Not curing cancer since the 1930s

A couple of months ago, a reader sent me an article that really disturbed me. In fact, I had originally been planning to write about it not long after I received it. However, as I've mentioned before, when it comes to blogging, I'm a bit like Dug the Talking Dog from the movie Up in that I'm easily distracted. Unlike Dug, what distracts me aren't squirrels, but rather bright, shiney pieces of pseudoscience, quackery, paranormal, or otherwise weird nonsense. Sometimes after I'm distracted I come back to the topic I had originally wanted to blog about. Sometimes I don't. Or, sometimes (like this time), it takes me nearly two months. I realize that that's kind of a lame excuse, but, well, that's just how Orac rolls. Except that Orac can't roll, being a square Plexiglass box full of multicolored blinking lights and all.

In any case, I just realize that, as far as I can tell, I've never blogged about this bit of cancer quackery before. Shocking, I know. I thought I had covered pretty much every major form of cancer quackery at least once over the seven and a half years this blog has been in existence. But I was wrong! This cannot stand! I must cover it!

Unfortunately, the article that brought my attention (back) to this particular form of cancer quackery is a story that is very sad. It is the story of Bernie Mulligan:

To Bernie Mulligan, chemotherapy is just a temporary setback.

The 45-year-old carpenter at the University of Windsor refused all traditional treatments for his terminal stomach cancer for about two months, until complications from an expanding liver landed him in the hospital.

On Monday, he reluctantly started chemotherapy for the first time.

Doctors say Mulligan will be lucky if he lives another two months, but he said he’s not worried. He just needs the chemotherapy to shrink his liver to the point where he can get back to the real cure, he said — a supplement in a rainbow-coloured bottle called Cantron.

“That’s the stuff that’s going to cure me. This stuff is not a cure, chemo’s not a cure,” he said. “When I got rushed into the hospital two weeks ago, yes, I thought I was done. But now I’m confident.”

Mulligan is one of many Windsor cancer patients who have crossed the border over the years to attend meetings of an organization based out of Warren, Mich., that promotes Cantron as a miracle cure.

Stomach cancer is, generally speaking, a bad actor. It's the sort of tumor that's hard enough to treat even when it's localized to the stomach, but when it's metastasized to the liver, as it has in Mr. Mulligan's case, it's incurable.

According to a video on the Windsor Star website, back in February Mulligan had been experiencing pains in his upper abdomen. He thought it was a "stomach bug" and was going to see his family doctor that very day when he started vomiting blood and ended up in the emergency room. At the time, it was found that he had numerous metastases in his liver. Ultimately the primary cancer was located and turned out to be what sounds to me like an upper stomach cancer or a cancer at the gastroesophageal junction, which, if true, is more esophageal cancer than gastric cancer. Be that as it may, esophageal cancer is a bad actor, too.

It's a horrible thing when a man this young is faced with a terminal cancer diagnosis, and that's exactly what Mulligan was facing. However, if there's one thing I always try to emphasize, it's that "incurable" does not mean "not treatable." If there's one area of cancer care that's advanced enormously over the last 20 or 30 years, it's palliative care. Even though palliative care is not designed to prolong life but rather to relieve symptoms, there is evidence that good palliative care results in prolongation of life. Of course, I realize that telling a 45-year-old man, who probably expected to live another 35 or 40 years, that we have good palliative care is not a message that is likely to be satisfying. We all want to live!

Enter the cancer quacks

Although it is the ethical and science-based thing to do to provide an honest assessment of prognosis based on the patient's presentation and what we know from science, unfortunately, there are plenty of "alternative" medicine practitioners out there who are more than happy to give a message of hope when there is little or no hope. Such a message causes a lot of harm, such as leading the patient to waste huge amounts of money to the point where he might bankrupt his family and leave nothing left for them after he's gone, causing unnecessary pain and complications, and, to put it bluntly, deceiving the patient with false hope. Of course, some patients are more susceptible to false hope than others, and Mulligan appears to be one of those patients. In his video, he talks about eschewing conventional therapy and going for homeopathic remedies before discovering Cantron.

But what is Cantron? The same basic formula has appeared under a wide variety of names, such as Sheridan’s Formula, Jim’s Juice, JS–114, JS–101, 126–F, Crocinic Acid, and, of course, Entelev, Protocel, and Cantron. The version of the magic cancer cure being used by Bernie Mulligan is sold by a company called Medical Research Products. It comes in bottles festooned with happy, cheerful colors, and its sales pitch runs like this:

Cantron® is an amazing bio-electrical wellness formulation. It provides astonishing health benefits like no other substance on Earth. It is the world's most potent antioxidant and scavenger of abnormal proteins which accumulate in the blood, tissues, organs and joints. Cantron is known to dramatically aid the body's own natural defenses. Since 1984, it has received rave reviews from those who have taken it. One customer summed it up perfectly on an Internet chat site when she emphatically stated: "How blessed we are to know about Cantron."

I wouldn't exactly put it that way.

Notice the pure snake oil-style appeal mixed with what I like to call science word salad. "Bio-electric wellness formulation"? It's a meaningless term. "Scavenger of abnormal proteins"? Highly unlikely. "Dramatically aid the body's own natural defenses"? That's just another way of phrasing the quack's favorite meaninglessly vague claim that his nostrum "boosts the immune system." Then, of course, there is the appeal to testimonial, wherein no science is presented but instead we're told how much people like the product and how much good it's allegedly done for people.

But what is Cantron? It turns out that there are several products that are very similar to Cantron. The original was Entelev, later rebranded as CanCell, which, as described in the article and on various web pages and articles as having first been conceived and compounded in the 1936 by a chemist working for the Dow Chemical Company named James V. Sheridan, who first called his concoction Entelev. Why did he choose that name? In an interview, Sheridan once said that the idea came to him in a dream that he believed to be inspired by God, explaining many years later that the name Entelev came from "entelechy" (that part of the living process known only to God) and "ev" (which came from the word "electrovalent"), the latter being added so that the name would have something for everyone. Another version of the tale, told by a believer, can be found here.

According to the company website, Sheridan apparently did some animal studies in the late 1940s (one wonders why it took him 10 or 12 years to go from making up his concoction to doing animal studies), but there is precious little objective evidence from parties not selling the compound that he ever did anything of the sort. It's also claimed that he attempted to do clinical trials while working at the Michigan Cancer Institute back in the 1950s. That claim actually raised an eyebrow, because, being in Michigan, I had never heard of the Michigan Cancer Institute. There is currently a Michigan Cancer Institute. However, it doesn't appear to be a research-based institution but rather part of a private hospital. As is so often the case in stories like this, the history just doesn't add up.

Be that as it may, according to the company website the next phase of the story occurred in the late 1950s through the 1960s, when, it is claimed, Sheridan was working for Battelle Laboratories, he did more work on his treatment. I don't have direct knowledge that can help me evaluate this claim (although I do find it curious that so little is revealed about what Sheridan was doing , but I did do a PubMed search for James V. Sheridan and failed to find any publications by him at all. Given that he continued to work on Entelev at least into the 1980s, if he had published anything in the peer-reviewed literature it should be locatable on PubMed. It's not. Then, from 1974 to 1983, Sheridan reportedly gave the formula away free of charge to over 1,000 people. In any case, the only evidence out there that I could find that Sheridan ever tried to do clinical trials is the existence of an application for investigational new drug (IND) status for CanCell (IND #20258) from 1982, which was not granted because the FDA asked for more information but didn't get it. Specifically, the FDA asked for the chemical formulation (which is proprietary and has not been revealed by Sheridan or any others making the compound) and animal studies demonstrating activity against cancer, which are pretty basic bits of information required for all INDs.

Then, in 1984, a man named Edward J. Sopcak acquired the formula for Entelev. How this came about is somewhat unclear, but we do know that in 1984 the FDA issued an order to cease and desist distributing Entelev to patients. Whether that happened before or after Sopcak acquired the formula is unclear. The company claims it was before, because Sheridan realized the jig was up and that the FDA was going to shut him down; so he wanted to get the formula out to others. (Obviously, that's not how they put it.) Particularly revealing, albeit no doubt unintentionally so, is this tidbid on the Medical Research Products website describing Sheridan, in which he is described thusly, "Jim also had no tolerance for complying with rigid manufacturing procedures that the FDA demanded." No doubt, given that at that time he was manufacturing his product in his house, as documented in a famous Detroit Monthly article in 1984, Hope on a Hot Plate (the title was based on the way Sheridan cooked up Entelev on a hot plate in his pantry), and in another incident was observed to be carrying out pH testing in his kitchen while his wife was cooking chicken for dinner.

In any case, Sheridan apparently teamed up with a history teacher from Plymouth, MI named Don Wilson who became a "missionary" for Sheridan; Orville "Orz" Feather, a chemical engineer; and, of course, Ed Sopcak. Thus was CanCell born; it was basically Entelev renamed. By 1989, the FDA asked for and received a permanent injunction against Sheridan and Sopcak prohibiting them from introducing their compound into interstate commerce on the basis that they were adulterated, misbranded, and unapproved new drugs. For several years, this seems not to have stopped Sopcak, who superseded Sheridan as the primary promoter of CanCell, from distributing it under the names Protocel and Entelev. Ultimately, in the 1990s, Sopcak and Sheridan complied, but that didn't stop other companies from making the same or similar products.

Cantron: False hope

So what are Cantron, Entelev, Protocel, and the plethora of products based on Jim Sheridan's original "juice"? Finding that out isn't exactly easy because the formula has been proprietary. Moreover, the purported explanations of how it supposedly works are, to put it kindly, a moving target. However, there are several explanations in common that resemble to some extent the paragraph I cited above. For instance, the Alternative Cancer Treatments Comparison and Testing website, which has a wonderfully catty criticism of Protocel relative to Cantron, which is, according to the website, so much better than Protocel, even though the unwashed masses buy more Protocel because they "mistakenly believe that the Protocel formula is controlled by the developer or his surviving family":

Both Cantron and Protocel work by reducing the ATP energy (adenosine triphosphate) in each cell of your body. (This is also one of the cancer fighting effects of Paw Paw and Graviola.) Our cells have an electrical potential that effects how the cell processes energy producing substances mostly blood sugar and oxygen from our blood supply...

By reducing this voltage level from 70 to 110 mv to something in the 50 mv region, normal cells can still function. However, cancer and viral cells cannot process energy at this low voltage level and start to starve. The process of starving is a slower process than being poisoned which is why Cancell works slower than chemo and why there was a dramatic reduction in the weight of tumor cells in the two day NCI test of Cancell, but only a small number of dead cells. Had that test run longer, all the tumor cells that showed such dramatic weight reduction would have starved to death. For more on the NCI test, go to the Comments on the NCI Test Summary for Cancell page.

It is always amusing to see such gross ignorance of basic biology, or, as I like to call it, burning stupid. Viruses are not cells. You can't starve them. They also apparently don't know that the membrane potential of cells is generally expressed as a negative voltage. I do, however, like the special pleading that the NCI test didn't measure the right thing, as if the NCI doesn't know what to measure when testing putative new cancer therapies in vitro and in vivo. Similarly, the part about reducing the resting electrochemical gradient across the cell membrane to the -50 mV range is pure nonsense. The main reason the voltage potential across a cell membrane decreases is either because the cell lacks ATP (which is the source of chemical energy for most cellular reactions, such as the ion pumps that maintain the gradient); something else (a poison, for instance) is inhibiting the ion pumps; or the membrane is leaky, dispersing the ion gradient. In any case, cells have a wide variety of resting potentials, and, in fact, promoters of Cantron get it exactly wrong. In actuality, resting potential corresponds with proliferative potential. Cells with a low proliferative potential tend to have high resting membrane potentials (say, -90 mV), while cells more able to proliferate have a lower resting potential. That includes cancer cells. Of course, it's more complicated than that in that tumor cells tend to undergo a hyperpolarized phase (higher voltage) while replicating, but the makers of Cantron get the biology all wrong. More differentiated cells tend to have higher resting membrane potential, and lower resting membrane potential tends to be associated with dediffrentiation.

Another claim by Cantron promoters for how it works is Sheridan's original rationale. In his IND application, he stated that cancer is a protein disease and that there are three kinds of cells: normal, primitive, and cancerous. In a "cancer relationship," Sheridan argues, cellular proteins become less differentiated than usual and can only replicate cancer proteins. Of course, one notes that in general proteins do not replicate; they are made by transcription and translation of the cell's DNA, but that didn't stop Sheridan from claiming that Entelev allowed cancer cells to attain the "primitive state," which would lead them to self-destruct. This is such utter nonsense from a biological standpoint that it defies reason that a biochemist could believe it, but apparently Sheridan did.

Sopcak's explanation, on the other hand, was slightly different in that he claimed that cancer cells are mutated anaerobic cells caused by lack of proper diet that causes chemical and electrical damage. His idea of cancer causation is that Progenitor cryptocides becomes active and helps healthy cells respire anaerobically. According to Sopcak, when the cell's energy needs outstrip the ability of anaerobic metabolism to supply them, the cell mutates and becomes a cancer cell in an irreversible process. One must admit that this sounds a heck of a lot more plausible than Sheridan's explanation, with its clever co-optation of the Warburg effect and hypotheses that have been around a while about how metabolism can contribute to cancer development. So how does Entelev reverse this process? Here's where Sopcak goes off the deep end. He claimed that Entelev changed the "vibrational energy and frequency" of cancer cells until they reach the "primitive state" postulated by Sheridan. The cells then autodigest, to be eliminated through the urine, feces, being coughed up, through perspiration, or even through a vaginal discharge. After this happens, cancer cells are replaced by normal cells.

Amusingly, Sopcak has also been quoted as saying that he believes all medicine in the future will ultimately be practiced by adjusting vibrational frequencies. Perhaps that's why it didn't take him too long to get into homeopathy. He even made a homeopathic version of CanCell and called it—I kid you not—CanCell, thus causing no end of confusion, particularly because the clear homeopathic version looked very different from the dark-colored original version. In any case, Enteleve/CanCell/Cantron has been promoted as a cure for AIDS, herpes, chronic fatigue syndrome, lupus, endometriosis, Crohn's disease, fibromyalgia, diabetes, emphysema, scleroderma, Lou Gehrig disease, multiple sclerosis, cystic fibrosis, muscular dystrophy, Parkinson disease, Alzheimer disease, hemophilia, high and low blood pressure, mental illness, and some forms of epilepsy.

And ya might not believe this, little fella, but it'll cure your asthma, too. I do note, however, that Cantron, or whatever one wants to call it, has been administered orally, rectally, and topically. If you want the nitty gritty of his pseudoscience, he expounds upon his beliefs and claims for Cantron in detail in this interview from 1996. In this interview, he admits that CanCell is nothing but "very pure water" and claims that it's a "programmed crystal." Even more amusingly, from a standpoint of homeopathy, he claims that he removes the memory from these water crystals and imprints the memory he wants. Elsewhere, he describes CanCell as a "vibrational catalyst":

ACRES U.S.A.: Allow us to back up a bit. What is the substance called Cancell? What is the theory behind it? How does it work? How do you make it?

SOPCAK: The new Cancell analyzes as very pure water. That's what it is.

ACRES U.S.A.: Just very pure water?

SOPCAK: That's right. It is a programmed crystal. Water is a crystalline substance. If it weren't crystalline, when it changes its physical state from water to a solid, you wouldn't get snowflakes. I have simply erased the memory of the water. People make statements such as, There are no two snowflakes exactly the same. That's because the memory in that crystal is so variable that snowflakes crystalize out just a little differently each time. Before you impress a memory on a crystal, you have to take out the memory that is there. I remove the memory.

ACRES U.S.A.: How do you remove the memory? Is this a case of magnetism?

SOPCAK: No, you can't come close to this with anything electrical or magnetic, or with any of the dense material like magnets or minerals. We don't do any of those things. I'd rather not get too deeply into that because I hate to see people become involved in what they don't understand, and then put out something definitely harmful.

So let me get this straight. If Cantron is the same as CanCell, it's basically water. However, in the photos on the Medical Research Products website Cantron looks like the dark liquid that Jim Sheridan used to sell as Entelev after cooking it up in on a hot plate in his kitchen and pantry. None of this stops him from going wild with the woo:

Basically, I get extremely fundamental once I make the statement that nothing exists in the entire universe except electromagnetic vibrational frequencies viewed from that plane of observation, that's it. There's nothing else. Then what you get into is diseases as vibrational densities. The problem is to raise the vibrational frequency of those densities, and then the body will return itself to normal. Diseases no longer exist.

Vibrations. Why does it always have to be vibrations? Every quack, cancer or otherwise, seems to think that vibrations are the be-all and end-all of everything; that is, when they don't think that evil humors—excuse me, energy blockages—are the cause of all disease.

So what's in Entelev/CanCell/Cantron? Not a lot, actually. In 1989, an FDA review found that it is made up of fairly unremarkable chemicals, including nitric acid, sodium sulfite, potassium hydroxide, sulfuric acid, inositol, and catechol. The Cantron website says that it contains copper, sodium, sulfur, postassium, as well as traces of iron, zinc, and bromine. None of what's in Cantron appears to have any anticancer activity at the levels one might expect in the human body, per the NCI:

In 1990 and 1991, samples of Cancell/Cantron/Protocel were evaluated in NCI’s in vitro 60 Human Tumor Cell Line Screen. The test results are available online. The graphs and the numerical designations for each of the three cancer cell growth criteria (GI50, concentration required for 50% inhibition of cell growth; TGI, concentration required for total inhibition of cell growth; and LC50, concentration required for 50% cell lethality or death) are somewhat complicated, but a technical explanation is provided in the Appendix 3. There is little evidence that any of the constituents of Cancell/Cantron/Protocel would be available in the bloodstream of a patient in significant concentrations after its ingestion. Activity was seen in two-thirds of the cell lines, though at levels that would be roughly 275 times higher than the theoretical maximum concentration achievable in serum. Therefore, the in vitro effects are likely due to nonspecific effects of changes in salt concentration. Furthermore, cells in the NCI Tumor Cell Line Screen are grown in artificial media under conditions that do not truly mimic the in vivo situation in animals or humans, and that results obtained with the screen may not accurately reflect possible effects in humans. To place the findings for Cancell/Cantron/Protocel in perspective any conventional drug exhibiting this low level of in vitro activity in the NCI human cancer cell line screen would normally not be investigated further by NCI.

A dietary supplement?

So how do the manufacturers of Cantron and its many imitators get away with it? How is it that they keep selling it? The answer is easy: Blame the DSHEA of 1994. Cantron, according to Medical Research Products, is a dietary supplement, as explained in these bullet points:

  • Cantron is offered only as a dietary supplement.
  • Medical Research Products makes no claims nor prescribes this product (or any other product) for the cure, prevention or mitigation of any chronic disease.
  • Cantron is not approved by the FDA or endorsed by the AMA for the treatment of any medical condition.
  • The FDA has not evaluated any statements of “health claims” made by MRP.
  • DO NOT IGNORE THE ADVICE OF YOUR PHYSICIAN. Do not use Cantron in lieu of any life saving treatments which have been prescribed by your physician.
  • Cantron is one very important part of a Total Wellness Program where one treats the whole nature of the individual through nutritional supplementation, diet, exercise, meditation, prayer, etc..
  • Cantron may be taken by itself, however, it is the primary product in our ‘Total Wellness Program’, which is a portfolio of synergistic products designed to stimulate the body’s own natural healing processes.

This brings us back to Bernie Mulligan. How on earth is it that Bernie Mulligan can be deceived to believe that Cantron will cure his stage IV esophageal cancer, with his liver packed with metastatic tumor? Certainly Medical Research Products isn't telling him that. To the company, it's all just a "supplement" that "promotes wellness naturally." Jerome Godin even emphasizes that in the article, stating in no uncertain terms that he is very careful to obey the law. He does, however, disingenuously add, "I just make my product and those who believe in it usually promote it on their own."

People like Andy Johnson:

On April 18, Johnson did what he does on the third Wednesday of every month at noon — went to a hall in Warren, unloaded cardboard boxes full of photocopied pamphlets, books and bottles of Cantron, approached the podium and preached the good news.

And preached. And preached. Johnson, an 82-year-old man with wire-rimmed glasses, a neatly trimmed moustache and a tucked-in yellow golf shirt, spoke for an hour. He paused for half an hour to allow people who believe Cantron cured their cancer to tell their stories before launching back into his speech for another 40 minutes.

And:

Johnson made all the claims the company that produces Cantron can’t, and then some. Cantron cures cancer, he said — along with AIDS, knee problems and the common cold. He jumped up and down to illustrate the part about the knee problems.

So what we have in Andy Johnson is a true believer, and, unfortunately, he has a group, the H.O.P.E. Group, to which he can preach his belief every third Wednesday of the month, promoting misinformation such as this, where he recommends that cancer patients use Cantron with a variety of other supplements, including shark liver oil, Enzyme Formula Tablets, Willard's Water, and Pancreatin. Even worse, Johnson apparently encourages his group members to avoid science-based treatments. Interestingly, though, Johnson's online footprint is actually quite small, as though he's flying under the radar. His group doesn't appear to have its own website, and it's hard to find out much about him online.

Be that as it may, what we have here is, in my professional opinion, a cancer quack. That he believes in his quackery makes it even worse, because it probably makes him a more effective salesman. Meanwhile, we have a company doing the old "wink, wink, nudge, nudge," while Johnson says the things that the law prohibits the company from saying about its product. A nice arrangement, isn't it? The treatment isn't cheap, either, its manufacturer's claims of wanting to make it available to everyone notwithstanding. According to the article, it costs about $500 every 20 days.

Unfortunately, the article, after having revealed this quackery, dilutes its message by in essence adding some apologia for "complementary and alternative" medicine. For instance, the author Claire Brownell writes that it's difficult for patients to separate science from fiction and hearsay (true) but that the also "won’t necessarily get much help from their doctors, who are usually poorly trained about alternative treatments and often dismissive of the entire concept." She also notes that the case of Cantron "doesn’t mean all alternative treatments are a scam or useless" and then cites a completely inappropriate example to illustrate her point. That example is an application for clinical trials of a dandelion root extract that apparently showed some activity against leukemia in preclinical models. Again, people, that is not in any way "alternative" or "complementary." It's pharmacognosy (i.e., natural products pharmacology), which is an old and productive branch of pharmacology. To equate pharmacognosy to pure quackery like Cantron is an insult to cancer pharmacologists everywhere.

I don't know whether Mulligan is still alive. The last report I could find about him is dated May 27 and is about his attending the Telus Motorcycle Ride for Dad. The saddest part, however, is that, even after Cantron has clearly failed him to the point where even with his aversion to conventional medicine in general and chemotherapy in particular he agreed to take chemotherapy, Bernie Mulligan still believes. It's a truly horrible thing for a man in his 40s to see the specter of his end approaching 30 or 40 years too early, to contemplate not living to see his daughters grow up, or to have the joy of seeing grandchildren. It's entirely understandable that, lacking the scientific background to realize that there is no scientifically plausible reason to think that Cantron will work and no scientific evidence supporting its efficacy against any cancer, a man like Mulligan might grasp at anything that he thinks can save him and participate in fundraisers to raise money for an "experimental" cancer treatment. It's companies like Medical Research Products, whose owners give no indication of being the least bit troubled by the claims being made for its products by people like Andy Johnson, that are to blame.

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Sorry about the rouge apostrophe.

Rose, I found a one page summary with references at the FDA site, but I'm still waiting for Leah's response before posting anything.

Thanks, I found the adverse drug article but not the sum of that and other medically caused deaths.
I am sorry for all the short posts. I have the attention span of a gnat right now.

Sorry about the rouge apostrophe.

You mean it's a reddish makeup?

By Mephistopheles… (not verified) on 15 Jul 2012 #permalink

I think Leah needs to learn that she's not going to get very far here with the strategy of changing the subject every time her claims are shown to be false.

Leah, I am going to ask you, straight out: Where on the FDA website does it say that medical treatments cause over 200 000 deaths per year or that adverse drug reactions are the fourth leading cause of death? You made that claim; it's your responsibility to provide the citation for it.

If you post three more comments, in this thread or any other, and none of those three comments contain an appropriate citation, the third comment will be taken as your admission that the FDA does not make those claims. We simply do not choose to reward the behavior of making grandiose claims and then moving on to new claims rather than showing an ounce of merit to the previous claims.

By Antaeus Feldspar (not verified) on 15 Jul 2012 #permalink

"You mean it’s a reddish makeup?"

*throws an eraser at Mephistopheles O'Brien*

By Sauceress (not verified) on 15 Jul 2012 #permalink

Now you know my terrible secret. I can't type. I usually can spell, but that ability can be masked by my lack of typing skills.

Keyboarding is not one of my skills.

i was trying to sneak tha tcomment around the duplicate comment police. It said I had already posted the comment long before it showed up. (whine and whimper)

Well, a May 2010 PDF from Kaiser Family Foundation says,

"Utilization. The number of prescriptions dispensed in the US in 2009 increased 2.1% (from 3.8 billion to 3.9 billion), a
larger growth rate than the 1.0% increase in 2008 over 2007. From 1999 to 2009, the number of prescriptions increased 39% (from 2.8 billion to 3.9 billion), compared to a US population growth of 9%. The average number of retail
prescriptions per capita increased from 10.1 in 1999 to 12.6 in 2009. The percent of the population with a prescription
drug expense in 2007 was 62%, the same as in 1997. The proportion of those with an expense varied by age -- 58% for
those under age 65 and 90% for those 65 and older, with little change since 1997 when the proportions were 59% and 86%, respectively."

I believe, though, the per capita was number of prescriptions per year, which would include things like birth control pills, allergy medication (in some plans it is cheaper to get medication available over the counter as "prescribed" and only pay your copay and some will take it that way), antibiotics, etc. Also, as pointed out by some cancer patients, it would probably be counted as a prescription each procedure, which would make numbers also run higher. I can't tell from what I'm reading if each refill counted as a prescription, too (since it reads "prescriptions dispensed"), though the 62% of the population had some kind of prescription quote makes me suspect that it might.

Once again - when you throw numbers around without any understanding of what period of time they are referencing, you can make them sound pretty doggone impressive. When I used to write marketing materials we often played with the scaling on the graphs to make them look best to suit our purposes, because the most reviewing that part of the data wouldn't be looking closely at it as much as they would be doing due diligence on the legalities. If it left them with a positive impression, they were more likely to consider the product (this was not when I was in marketing in biotech; it was in real estate).

I was just cruising around the altie threads on BCO. It doesn't take more than a couple of posts to find some truly crazy opinions. Specifically, one poster self diagnosed herself as contracting aids three separate times. She also claims she cured herself by following the teachings of Gary Null. Uh huh, ok.

@Jergen - on support threads for my disease many of the "self-healed" who are touting their treatments were also self-diagnosed. It makes those of us who have gone through the diagnostic process and have demonstrated illness so frustrated, both because it can mislead really sick people to treatments that could even be harmful to them. and because it is misleading (and in some ways, insulting, especially when they pull out the "you just don't want to go on this all grapefruit healing diet because you don't want to be healed.").

jergen
[Specifically, one poster self diagnosed herself as contracting aids three separate times. She also claims she cured herself by following the teachings of Gary Null. Uh huh, ok.]

Which thread?

By Sauceress (not verified) on 15 Jul 2012 #permalink

"Alternatie Therapy" thread. Start reading at 5/14 10:34PM

@MrsWoo....yes, very frustrating. How could one possibly self diagnose AIDS? I think I have AIDS therefore I do?

The same thread I mentioned above is touting the healing qualities of Graviola leaves. It "only targets cancer cells, not healthy cells". Surprisingly, a couple of other alties have made the point that it has been known to cause Parkinsons. I feel for the newbie who will read this nonsense and believe it.

The woman you are talking about thinks Gary Null is a saint - she is also severely limited intellectually. She is a self admitted recovered ? heroin addict. She says she has bc but won't have surgery. Most of her posts are indecipherable, like she is ON something. If you tell her to have surgery, she starts posting about being abused as a child by the local doctor.

I hope no one attacks me for repeating someone's info here, but I didn't name names, I'm sure you can figure it out for yourself.

@afriend

Heroin addict? That says it all.

@jergen - a woman at our church self-diagnosed herself with bone cancer (because her body hurt all over) and then healed herself with prayer. ~sigh~

No wonder the internet drives some doctors crazy.

@afriend

My head was killing me yesterday morning. I guess it had nothing to do with the wine the night before. Its brain cancer!

Im sorry, but this stuff is so ridiculous its funny. Some of the things written on that thread are just crazy! One gal doesn't want to do the vitamin C therapy because it will interfere with the Protocel! If I didn't read it myself I wouldn't believe it.

The woman you people are gossiping about is 75 years old and is afraid surgery will kill her. For the love of God, have have respect and don't judge her. For whatever reasons many people suffer from Iatrophobia.

jergen@ like Tamoxifen, Protocel will not work if you are taking antioxidants.

In the article below is the link to the FDA's website. Unfortunately, I can't make it hot , so look up the article yourselves to get the link and contact the FDA. They'll guide you to more scary stats over the phone. A staff member has done that for me in the past.

FDA accused of mass homicide of one million Americans each decade

Tuesday, May 22, 2012 by: Ethan A. Huff, staff writer

(NaturalNews) The biggest threat to America today is not terrorists or global warming, but the mass genocide of Americans who die every year at the hands of the corrupt U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). In a recent report, investigative reporter Jon Rappoport uncovers the dirty truth that FDA-approved drugs kill at least 100,000 people every single year -- the FDA actually lists this figure on its own website -- and the agency is doing absolutely nothing about this disastrous trend.

On a webpage entitled Why Learn about Adverse Drug Reactions (ADR)?, the FDA admits that 100,000 people die every single year as a result of taking FDA-approved pharmaceutical drugs. Citing figures from three different published studies, the figures also reveal that two million people a year suffer from serious ADRs, which include things like stroke, heart attack, and permanent neurological damage.

You can view the FDA page for yourself here:
http://www.fda.gov

Since these figures come from studies dating back to at least 1998, it is clear that the FDA is fully aware of the extensive harm being caused by supposedly "safe" drugs. And since it has done nothing to address the problem, the agency is complicit in willfully harming and murdering tens of millions of Americans throughout just the past several decades, which makes it one of the most murderous government regimes in history.

Based on the figures presented by the FDA, at least 30 million people have suffered serious injury or death as a result of taking FDA-approved drugs just since 1998 when the first cited study was published. If you go back several more decades, it is clear that potentially hundreds of millions of people have been directly harmed by the FDA's "negligent homicide."

"It is time for these murderous government crimes to end," writes Rappoport in his report. "It is time for all responsible parties to be brought to justice, to real justice. It is time for the public to realize that 100,000 people dying every year in the U.S., because they take medical drugs, is the equivalent of 33 airliner crashes into the Twin Towers, every year, year after year."

Why the FDA and its drug lords are the real terrorists
Since the FDA is the official gatekeeper of pharmaceutical drugs, it is directly responsible for the harm they cause. And yet agency officials have never, in any meaningful way, been held responsible for their crimes against humanity. And the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ), as Rappoport points out, has failed to step in and pursue those responsible for peddling poison as medicine.

If al-Qaeda operatives were caught dispensing toxic chemicals disguised as medicine to innocent civilians, they would be sent off to Guantanamo Bay without trial, and locked away indefinitely. But when the FDA does the very same thing on a much more massive scale, nobody bats an eye. And yet the number of people that the FDA has killed with its drugs is far more than the number killed during 9/11 or the Oklahoma City bombing.

The organized crime ring that is the federal government today is the real terrorist threat that we all face on a daily basis. And until the American people collectively wake up to this reality, we will continue to watch our friends, our families, and our children, which are the casualties of this ongoing terrorist attack, lay waste at the hands of Big Pharma and the FDA.

Learn more: http://www.naturalnews.com/035936_FDA_homicide_victims.html#ixzz20kRrya…

Why Learn about Adverse Drug Reactions (ADR)?
Institute of Medicine, National Academy Press, 2000
Lazarou J et al. JAMA 1998;279(15):1200–1205
Gurwitz JH et al. Am J Med 2000;109(2):87–94

Over 2 MILLION serious ADRs yearly
100,000 DEATHS yearly
ADRs 4th leading cause of death ahead of pulmonary disease, diabetes, AIDS, pneumonia, accidents and automobile deaths
Ambulatory patients ADR rate—unknown
Nursing home patients ADR rate— 350,000 yearly

Quoting Natural News to us is like quoting Mad Magazine.

Protocel will not work. Fixed that for you.

So we can't make fun of a kook who thinks she got AIDS not once, not twice, but THREE times and cured it herself each time? What does it matter if she's 25 or 75?

By Marc Stephens … (not verified) on 15 Jul 2012 #permalink

Do you understand the point of the article you cited in JAMA? Also, notice it's dated 2000. Do you understand why it was written?

By Marc Stephens … (not verified) on 15 Jul 2012 #permalink

The Tampa Bay Times did a piece of legal drug abuse last year. Over 500 people a year in the Tampa Bay/St. Pete/Clearwater area die every year from legal drug abuse: mostly Oxys, that thet get with legal prescriptions (from multiple doctors sometimes) and then snort or inject. One woman in the story bought somepne's else's MRI and used that to show doctors she had terrible back pain to get her Oxys. Is any of this the fault of the drug companies or doctors?

By Marc Stephens … (not verified) on 15 Jul 2012 #permalink

@Leah says:

If al-Qaeda operatives were caught dispensing toxic chemicals disguised as medicine to innocent civilians, they would be sent off to Guantanamo Bay without trial, and locked away indefinitely.

So what should we do to those who dispense toxic chemicals disguised as supplements? Dont post another article from Natural News. Thats like asking a 2 year old child their opinion on cancer meds. Really Leah, it makes you seem stupid.

@Marc Stephens Is Insane
Call the FDA for more recent stats. The numbers are much higher than that.

@leah

[citation needed]

You never answer any questions or address our points. You just bring up more nonsense.

If you hate chemicals, what's in Protocel? Do you even know? How do you know each batch is the same? How do you know there are no harmful impurities in a batch?

And are you aware that recent research indicates that taking antioxyidants orally, even from fruits and veggies, is almost useless? The body doesn't absorb antioxyidants through the oral route, and the body manufactures all the antioxys it needs by itself?

By Marc Stephens … (not verified) on 15 Jul 2012 #permalink

Novalox,

No, WE have to find her research for ourselves. I'm not an American, and I'm not about to call the FDA.

Leah: dox or STFU. Understand?

By Marc Stephens … (not verified) on 15 Jul 2012 #permalink

@Leah

Why should anyone call the FDA? You made the assertion, you should back it up.

Let me guess why you don't....Its all woooooooooo!

I followed a link to a story in Natural News once and was quite shocked - everything is represented as fact - no argument - like the readers have been totally brain washed - very scary.

Leah ( Zuvart - yes I know who you are) - that woman is totally loony, yet you altie girls all cheer her on. Have you tried to talk her into surgery? Do you care if she dies? Hell, it isn't even confirmed she has breast cancer. If someone else tries to encourage another woman to at least have surgery, the altie bullies come out of the wood work and attack.

I love the sensationalisitc photos that Mikey uses on Natural News. Also, most of the time the "headline" is equally sensationalistic but has little or nothing to do with the story. And in many cases the story is second or third hand and many years old, like the monkey/autism story they ran recently. And the comments are hilarious in and of themselves!

Ever see the SNL episode where Jason Sudeikis plays the devil and says he was responsible for creating the "comments" section of websites?

By Marc Stephens … (not verified) on 15 Jul 2012 #permalink

I did notice some of the alties called BS on the triple AIDS claim, and some other rational posters spoke up in favour of ARV drugs. So even in the altie forum there is some common sense.

By Marc Stephens … (not verified) on 15 Jul 2012 #permalink

Legal drug abuse makes me so angry. My condition is painful and I'm on a cocktail of various medications - tricyclics, anti-seizure meds, as well as narcotics and muscle relaxants. I'm one of the lucky ones - I had a seven year history of issues that often get medicated that I refused medication for. Finally the pain levels were just higher than my body actually could deal with and I had to do something. I have an established history with my primary care and he does my pain management because I was uninsured when I finally needed it.

The scale of drug diversion and abuse makes it increasingly difficult for doctors to prescribe medication to legitimate patients who do everything right (and there are increasing lists of the rules for "everything right"). I just keep waiting for notification that it has gotten too dangerous for my doctor to prescribe pain medication to the few patients he chooses to do it for (he shared that it is pretty rare for him to do this - mostly poor and uninsured/underinsured patients). I also worry about how hard it might be to find pain management when he chooses to retire one day.

One of the most frustrating things, though, is the media portrayal of it. They make it sound like every patient has no real need for treatment, they are all addicts, and the doctors prescribing those medications only do so for the profit involved - that none of it addresses real suffering and/or that the raids done leave legitimate patients in the throes of withdrawal just as much as the addicts.

@afriend

Leah = Zuvart? Makes sense. Ive read her posts. Another whack job.

Mrs. Woo,

Some of your points were addressed in the Tampa Bay Times. That's one of the worst-struck areas in the US for legal drug abuse. The woman in the article would get a legit script, sell some of the pills on the street for a huge profit and keep the rest for herself, and then repeat the process. The MRI scam was one of her weapons, as doctors really have to be convinced the Oxys are really needed. Each script is filed with the federal authorities in the US, apparently.

Here in Canada they've banned the old formulation of Oxys and have released a new version that is harder to abuse. But there are already instructions online on how to extract the active painkiller agents.

By Marc Stephens … (not verified) on 15 Jul 2012 #permalink

@Marc Stephens Is Insane. Protocel is non-toxic. Unlike chemotherapy, it's not a carcinogen. Also, Protocel will not destroy your immune system or cause permanent changes or damage to the heart, lungs, nerves, kidneys, reproductive or other organs. Oh yes ...and no hair loss, anemia, chemo brain etc. either. But don't rely on me to educate you. Do your own research. Knowledge is power, my friend.

So protocel is non-toxic but you claim it can kill cancer - how does it do that?? Smiling at it?? It won't damage your immune system, heart etc, so it probably doesn't damage cancer either.

@Leah

Of all the things you mentioned that chemo causes, Ive only had one. Hair loss. Knock it off chicken little.

Leah,

That's got nothing to do with what I asked. We address each and every point you raise, yet you ignore ours. You pick and choose what you'll address and in the process throw more muck up in the air. What's IN Protocel? It's non-toxic because it's useless. how do you know it's even safe and pure to take internally? What safeguards are in place in the manufacturing process? How do you know the bottle you bought last month is the same as the one you'll buy next month?

You keep saying "do your own research". You're the one making the claims, so you're the one who has to back them up. Many people have told you that here many times, and yet you persist. Are you stubborn or stupid? As I said, dox or STFU.

By Marc Stephens … (not verified) on 15 Jul 2012 #permalink

At Marc Stephens II - yes, Florida has a really bad reputation for pill mills. The new formula of oxy is available here, too. Since it is not generic yet, though, a lot of poor people need the older formulation just for that reason. For whatever reason a lot of prescription plans don't want to pay for name brand when generic is available. I really wish they would have taken the health insurance companies out of the equation when they started playing with a national health care coverage plan. All it is is a parasite sucking money out of the middle and making everything more expensive. You have to pay all of those insurance processors, their bosses, their bosses' bosses, and, of course, millions of dollars each year for the highest of upper management.

There was one article I read recently that at least made a point of discussing some of the incoming patients and their confusion (and worry) when they showed up for their next appointment and had no way of getting refills. On the stronger pain medications, you can only use paper refills, so that definitely had to be a bad day. I was glad they at least included it with a neutral voice instead of painting the patient in any kind of light.

@ Leah - since you are the one "selling" this product on this thread, please share the actual studies that show that it treats cancer any more effectively than a glass of water three times a day. When asked to provide evidence you seem more interested in providing ad hominem rants, painting oncologists as doctors who get to make a profit on chemotherapy (most don't, as far as I know) and therefore have a vested interest in prescribing it versus alternative therapies.

Now you're doing "don't rely on me to educate you" - you're the one telling us this treatment work. Show us! Since it has been around for so long and been so successful, surely you have some kind of documentation to share, don't you?

It always amazes at the raging hypocrisy in thr alt world. They won't vaccinate because of "toxins", then they'll feed their kids bleach and give them bleach enemas (MMS). They won't take real drugs from doctors but they'll drink some stuff they bought from who-knows over the internet.
Chemicals are bad but the chemicals in MMS and Protocel are good.

By Marc Stephens … (not verified) on 15 Jul 2012 #permalink

Alright, let's try this a different way.

Leah, one simple question. WHY do you think Protocel works? What led you to that conclusion?

OK, that's actually two questions.

By Marc Stephens … (not verified) on 15 Jul 2012 #permalink

By the way, I'm watching a Family Guy episode right now that's skewering Christian Scientists and their belief that prayer can cure anything. The CS parents won't take their very sick kid to a doctor, and will pray instead. There have been lines in the show that sound like skeptics wrote them.

Seth McFarlane has often made fun of woo. He did an episode about an alternative "healer" once too. It's obvious how he feels about quackery.

By Marc Stephens … (not verified) on 15 Jul 2012 #permalink

I've been taken to two different faith healers.

Apparently I lack faith (it couldn't be their lack of faith, right?).

It took me on quite a journey of self-doubt, to be honest. In a way Christianity is a very integral part of me - I don't know how to completely let go of believing it, even though I disagree with much of how it is preached and practiced. But when I was told by one healer that I was possessed (supposed to be impossible if you are adequately Christian) and by another that if I would have faith I would have been healed, I had to wonder if there is such a thing as not enough faith after all, and if I had inadequate faith, could I believe in anything?

Quite a philosophical exercise in the end.

@jergen
[quote]"Leah = Zuvart? Makes sense. Ive read her posts. Another whack job."[/quote]

Based on the similar hatred and vitriol toward SBM permeating nearly every one of her posts, I was going for "Maud".

Still who knows how many nyms belong to these sociopathic toadies perched on BCO preaching useless scam cures to the women there.

There's a few who stand out as being quite obviously drunk on the Null and Adams Kool-Aid.

By Sauceress (not verified) on 15 Jul 2012 #permalink

@sauceress

Maud is rude and feels the need to capitalize and bold half of her posts. Plus, she posts enormous amounts of quackery links. Leah can't back up her own quackery with other quackery links. So, I'm sticking with Zuvart. :)

Formulation and efficacy

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has listed the components as inositol, nitric acid, sodium sulfite, potassium hydroxide, sulfuric acid, and catechol. Precise formulation varies by manufacturer, and may include crocinic acid and various minerals and vitamins.[2]
Researchers at the National Cancer Institute (NCI) tested the constituents of Cancell in animal experiments in 1978 and 1980 and in vitro on human tumors in 1990 and 1991. They concluded that the compounds comprising Cancell could not be taken in doses high enough to kill cancer cells in the body, and that further study was not warranted. No peer-reviewed clinical or animal trials of Cancell have demonstrated any positive effect; claims for Cancell's efficacy are limited to anecdotal reports and testimonials.[1] The American Cancer Society and Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center recommend against the use of CanCell, as there is no evidence that it is effective in treating any disease, and its proposed method of action is not consistent with modern science.[3][2]

Yeah, you're right. I am wondering how many other nyms "Zuvart" may have at BCO.

By Sauceress (not verified) on 15 Jul 2012 #permalink

Redloh
Sulfuric acid...yummy.

By Sauceress (not verified) on 15 Jul 2012 #permalink

I think Leah is Zuvart because of the way she expresses 'overtreated' ie 'over treated'. Did a search of BCO to see how Zuvart says this and she uses a space between. I do notice no argument from Leah on my supposition :)

@Redloh, Sloan Kettering and The American Cancer Society are as useless as Quack Watch and RI. I strongly suggest that you roll up your sleaves quickly and find credible sources.

@afriend

Nice research. And yes, still no "Im not Zuvart" so I think your right.

Zuvart - if you don't trust MSK and the ACS then post a link to a reputable source to back up your quackery.

Are you going to claim censorship?

Leah is still ignoring all our questions and comments. I think she realizes she's in w-a-a-a-a-a-a-y over her head arguing with people who are much smarter than she is. Or smarter than she thinks she is.

By Marc Stephens … (not verified) on 15 Jul 2012 #permalink

Leah is still debating whether to laugh or cry. She realizes that she w-a-a-a-s-t-i-n-g her time on a lazy bunch of air heads who actually think prescriptions drugs is a food group.

Is Leah still here? Since she is now speaking in third person, will she finally stick the flounce?

She was making fun of me, because I was writing about her and not to her.

So Leah, still no answers, huh? Or eh, as we say up here in Canada?

And you call us airheads? Doctors, surgeons, nurses, scientists, researchers, we're all airheads are we?

When did anyone here say anything remotely like drugs are a food group? It's the alties like you who think food and vitamins are medicine.

So why do you think Protocel works?

By Marc Stephens … (not verified) on 15 Jul 2012 #permalink

And she can't spell - it's "sleeves"

@Leah
"Those” ask your doctor if chemicals are right for you” 30-second spots are powerful"

Chemicals?
You mean stuff like catecholamines, adenosine triphosphate, nitrogen-bearing molecules and lipids? If you don't like chemicals you're welcome to remove all of those from your system.

By Spectator (not verified) on 15 Jul 2012 #permalink

I don't even bother to comment on spelling on blogs anymore.

I've learned these blogs attract international readers and some people are writing in a second or third language. I admire and respect that. I couldn't post on a foreign language blog and wouldn't try.

What does bug me, and I know it's an uphill battle, is that very few people know when to use "it's" versus "its" anymore.

"It's" is not possessive, but most people use it that way. I will correct it if I see it in my local newspaper, with insolence, because journalists and professional writers should know better. That's their job. It's inexcusable in a publication. It hurts my eyes to see it. In the comments section of a blog, though, it's par for the course.

Let's not even talk about "their", "there" and "they're".

Can you tell I'm an English/journalism major?

By Marc Stephens … (not verified) on 15 Jul 2012 #permalink

I explain, twice, why Lazarou is not a reliable source for an accurate estimate of fatal adverse drug reaction figures. I even provide a link to the full text of Lazarou's paper so she can read it for herself and check I am telling the truth. Leah responds by citing Lazarou. Then she mocks us for being "a lazy bunch of air heads".

By Krebiozen (not verified) on 16 Jul 2012 #permalink

@Marc Stephens is Insane, you wrote

[And you call us airheads? Doctors, surgeons, nurses, scientists, researchers, we’re all airheads are we? ]

YES! You think you make decisions based on medical evidence. In fact, half of medical evidence is hidden from doctors. And the half that’s hidden is the half that shows drugs don’t work.

((((((((((THE MEDICAL INDUSTRAIL COMPLEX)))))))

Because drug companies fund most of the research in the world, great therapies that work better like nutritional therapies and PROTOCEL never get enough funding.

((((((THE MEDICAL INDUSTRIAL COMPLEX)))))

Leah, if you had read the actual FDA page rather than someone else's biased misrepresentation of it, you'd see that their presentation of Lazarou's figures come with a very important qualifier: "If these figures are to be believed." Why would the FDA say "If these figures are to be believed" if there was no such question? Just using the phrase indicates that there is doubt (and if you had "done the research yourself" you'd have learned that there's a lot of doubt that Lazarou's extrapolation from a small sample to the entire nation is anywhere near meaningful) and representing it as if the FDA asserted it as fact with no reservations is just plain deception.

Ultimatum question time, Leah: Under what single standard is it disrespectful to point out that a 75-year-old woman's behavior is irrational when she self-diagnoses AIDS and then self-diagnoses herself as cured of AIDS, but perfectly respectful to claim Orac has a "Murder Degree"? Not answering within your next three comments will be taken as an affirmative admission that you have no answer, and are simply living by a double standard.

By Antaeus Feldspar (not verified) on 16 Jul 2012 #permalink

the average American is taking around seven prescription drugs per year

Wrong. The actual statistic is that the average American is filling around seven prescriptions per year. My wife uses the birth control pill (for a variety of reasons) that she has to refill every 4 weeks. I have a prescription for an Epi-pen that I need to refill every year (or sooner, should I ever actually have to use the thing). Between the two of us, that works out to 13+1=14 prescriptions filled per year. Or on average, 7 prescriptions filled per person per year.

By W. Kevin Vicklund (not verified) on 16 Jul 2012 #permalink

@leah

Relying on the old "Pharma shill gambit", eh?

Guess that means you acknowledge that your argument is without merit, since you have to resort to that tack, and that you automatically lose the argument.

But I do admit, your rank ignorance is amusing to watch, and gives me a good laugh. So, keep it up, show your idiocy to the world.

@W. Kevin Vicklund

Birth control pills = breast cancer.

Oh come on Leah - you really aren't trying anymore, are you?

What next? Deodorants cause breast cancer too?

Do you know nothing more than to parrot the Null / Mercola playbook?

@leah

[citation needed], because I do need a good laugh, and it would be amusing to see where in the world you made up that load of bollocks.

Protocel=profit for Leah.

How much $ do you make from each of you victims?

@Leah

You write:

"YES! You think you make decisions based on medical evidence. In fact, half of medical evidence is hidden from doctors. And the half that’s hidden is the half that shows drugs don’t work."

If the above were true, it would mean that all doctors are idiots who cannot think for themselves. Clearly that is not true. It would also mean that there is a great conspiracy at play. Do you have any idea what it would take to pull off a conspiracy of that magnitude? Leah - it doesn't make sense. Why can't you see that?

Once you believe that some evil power is manipulating the very information you use to base your assessments about reality on, you are lost. Anything remotely suggestive of this being true is eagerly embraced, and anything that contradicts it is dismissed as being misinformation. To someone stuck in that self-confirming feedback loop it looks as if the rest of the world is composed of sheeple who need to open their eyes. Sad really.

By Krebiozen (not verified) on 16 Jul 2012 #permalink

If those supposed miracle cures actually worked, don't you think "big pharma" would be producing similar substances under the name of a corporately related division and selling them over the counter in chain drug stores?

Follow the money - if these things worked and all that these horrible evil drug companies were interested in were profits, they'd be selling their own versions....

They don't do that. I can't imagine them giving up millions of dollars in legitimate business...those big drug companies must be very altruistic.

And of course 12 hours later and airhead Leah has yet to answer a single one of our questions.

LEAH: WHY DO THINK PROTOCEL WORKS?!! (See, I can shout too.)

By Marc Stephens … (not verified) on 16 Jul 2012 #permalink

*offering MSII the secret English/journalism handshake -- hint, it involves creative use of the AP Stylebook* :-)

By Scottynuke (not verified) on 16 Jul 2012 #permalink

Up here in Canada we use the CP (Canadian Press) stylebook. I still have two copies from the early 80s. And of course I have copies of "The Elements of Style" in every room of my house.

By Marc Stephens … (not verified) on 16 Jul 2012 #permalink

Scotty,

Interestingly (or maybe not...) although Canadians use the British spelling of words that end in "or" and add a "u" (eg honour, colour, rumour) the CP stylebook specifies "American" spelling for these words. The old rationale was to save ink and paper during the printing process. Each additional letter that wasn't necessary (people understand color and honor) added to the cost of printing and made columns longer.

By Marc Stephens … (not verified) on 16 Jul 2012 #permalink

Thomas,

I've lost track of the heroes and villains in this piece. Does Leah actually sell Protocel?

Where's Black-cat and thenewme? I thought they'd enjoy the past day's worth of conversation.

By Marc Stephens … (not verified) on 16 Jul 2012 #permalink

"Leah – it doesn’t make sense. Why can’t you see that?"

I think it was Upton Sinclair who said that you can't make someone understand something if their paycheck depends on them not understanding.

Leah sells a product that has not been proven to work for over half a century. If she ever acknowledged that, or if she ever stopped trying to persuade cancer patients to switch to her product, her cash flow would take a serious hit, so of course she doesn't see that.

Besides, conspiracy theories are so much easier and more exciting that silly ol' things like, y'know...evidence.

Can Orac get us out of italics hell here? Is there a magic wand he can wave, or some incantations he can chant to the SB gods to get us back to regular font?

By Marc Stephens … (not verified) on 16 Jul 2012 #permalink

@shay

Evidence. What a concept!

"I’ve lost track of the heroes and villains in this piece. Does Leah actually sell Protocel?"

No one would spend this much time shilling for a product that they don't make big bucks for - isn't that the 'logic' that Leah promotes...

MSII -- It's always all about squeezing the copy into the space leftover after the ads, right? *SIGH*

I've always wanted to see the CP Stylebook entry on "eh," yanno... : - )

By Scottynuke (not verified) on 16 Jul 2012 #permalink

Ahhhh...... the silence.... maybe Leah has stuck the flounce after all? Or maybe she's just consulting the playbook.

@thenewme

Whatever playbook leah's been using, it isn't working, unless she intentionally planned to make herself look like a fool.

@novalox,
It's fabulous, isn't it?? I *love* the discriminating audience here! I wish the same could be said for BCO, where she and her cohorts deliver their message directly to a target audience.

This site and Quackwatch provide excellent marketing for Protocel and other remedies.I always check here for tips.

I hadn't heard of Protocel until you all began publicizing it. Now it's become a must-have. Do you get an affiliate fee?

Thanks for the alt med tips!

[

If those supposed miracle cures actually worked, don’t you think “big pharma” would be producing similar substances under the name of a corporately related division and selling them over the counter in chain drug stores?

Exactly!
Yet even more cognitive dissonance is required for the anti-Big Pharma crowd to presume that fiercely competitive pharmaceutical companies all over the world are all in on one massive conspiracy. Reality it ain't!

By Sauceress (not verified) on 16 Jul 2012 #permalink

Ooops... above quoting of ABCDEFG (11:13 am)

@D
"Thanks for the alt med tips!"

Your welcome.

By Sauceress (not verified) on 16 Jul 2012 #permalink

Oh and you're welcome too Leah.

By Sauceress (not verified) on 16 Jul 2012 #permalink

@marc

Thanks so much for the heads up on that horrible website. I'm looking at it now. I wonder if she is on bco So far I am not making any conncections between the too, but you never know. . I will let you know what I think when I am done reading all the scary crap that she has up. I have had trouble with some of my posts on this site, also and have posted the same post multiple times.

I am positve that Leah is JoyLiesWithin. She outed herself on the think outside the box website when she posted that I had" met my match and that she knew my weak spots and was going to come over here and poke me."

She materialized on RI right after that as Leah. When she was accused of sneering at my cancer diagnosis she went right back to BCO and posted as JoyLiesWIithin, that Orac and his commentators laugh at stage 4 women with breast cancer. She was projecting obviously. She also livies in Australia, which explains the posts on the dumb americans.

The others are not so clear as they did not out themselves.

I think that Maud is Boudicca. I can't find her on this thread at the moment to point out where it is. She's only posted once.

Lucy sure smells like lucy88.

The others are not that obvious as they did not out themselves like she did.

By Black-cat (not verified) on 16 Jul 2012 #permalink

I have no idea who D is.

By Black-cat (not verified) on 16 Jul 2012 #permalink

@black-cat

Joy was having a fit on BCO when you were posting over here initially. It was a blast to watch!

I saw that. I got a kick out of her too.

By Black-cat (not verified) on 16 Jul 2012 #permalink

Jergen, I don't know why my post showed up before yours but it was an answer to you. I have no idea who you are or any of the other skeptics from BCO. I have a guess on who AFriend is but certainly won't post it. I think you are all wise for not posting your BCO names. The alites are certainly safe. Alties promoting quackery and BCO are encouraged to do so. Would love to hear from you and any other skeptics from over there. I miss my peeps.

By Black-cat (not verified) on 16 Jul 2012 #permalink

I have followed your posts as well as thenewme for a while. Both of you have been calm and caring when trying to help some of the ladies on BCO. In return, you were attacked by those crazy alties. As you have mentioned before, the minute you challenge any altie "remedy" they come out and attack. I find it disgusting that they would lead people away from conventional treatment and recruit them into la la land. I've learned a lot from your posta and that is why I'm here!

Boudicca

July 11, 5:16 pm = Maud

By Black-cat (not verified) on 16 Jul 2012 #permalink

I guess we didn't use enough ALL CAPS to convince D.

By Militant Agnostic (not verified) on 16 Jul 2012 #permalink

Jergen, I am glad you and the others are here. Feels good not to take that train to crazy town, anymore!!! RI is a breath of fresh air compared to the BCO alite sites.

Here's a little history of BCO and why the alties get away with all their crap. A few years ago some women claimed that they were stalked and threatened over their views on BCO. It was in a couple of newspapers and two women were interveiwed on the news. The newscaster also interviewed the physician owner at BCO's office in Pa.

Because of all the bad publicity this was generating, BCO bent over backwards to make sure everyone played nice. Whenever I point out that Vivre is selling Usana or promoting her quack website, the alties whine that I am stalking her and attack me. Poor poor vivre will more often whne on how she is just trying to help people with her NON PROFIT WEBSITE. That trashy website is clearly not a non profit and vivre never applied for non profit status for anything. I checked. Nevertheless, I get a warning email from the mods accussing me of stalking vivre abd if I don't stop, they will ban me. If I in turn try to point out that vivre is peddling her crap on BCO and trying to scare newly diagnosed women from getting treatmen from their real doctors and trying to persuade them to buy vivre's books(amazon bookstore) or crap from her website, I get a reply that she is just expressing her opinion and that is not against forum rules.

By Black-cat (not verified) on 16 Jul 2012 #permalink

I don't know if you remember but there was only one CAM forum. Because of all the fighting the physician owner made the decision to have a seperate alternative forum. This forum is only for those interested and participating in alternative treatment. It's right there in the forum rules. The mods have emailed me and suggested that since I was not clearly into alternative medicine and was not being respectful of those who were, that I should respectfully stay out of that forum. They would point out the altie forum rules to clarify this forum is exclusively for alties only and that I clearly don't have any business posting there.

By Black-cat (not verified) on 16 Jul 2012 #permalink

The constant bitching and moaning they do is simply amazing. Sometimes I feel like I have wandered into a high school gym. The passive aggressive tone of their posts are clearly not a concern of BCO. I was actually told by one of those crazy alties that I was a sheep who blindly followed my MO because I chose conventional treatment and didn't understand the benefit of Paw paw and grape seed extract. And, how dare I question the discussion in an alternative thread. Ahhhh, ok. That was all I had to know about their crazy ways. When I asked why they were making huge sweeping negative comments about chemo side effects that were not true for all patients (myself included) I was reported to the mods.

I have not been on BCO long but after a short time I just went looking for Albert Einstein and the orange towel because I knew I would find thoughtful and well thought out posts.

Thanks. Thenewme has been at it much longer than me and has spent a great deal more time than me trying to be the voice of reason in those forums.

Speaking of a high school gym ,Dr Weiss, who is the owner to the site, spends her time penning simplistic and patronizing articles on the site.

I guess that is how she justifies her generous salary.
This one article of hers comes to mind. It's proper hygeine which we were all taught in 4th grade by the gym teacher.

Thank you, Dr. Weiss, for educationg us poor ignorant slobs on how to properly clean ourselves.

http://community.breastcancer.org/livegreen/feminine-hygiene-cleaning-u…

By Black-cat (not verified) on 16 Jul 2012 #permalink

I have to admit that what confuses me is why telling someone the truth is considered "attacking" them. When someone holds dangerous beliefs and is attempting to share them with others (in dangerous I mean life-threatening or possibly physically dangerous, like delaying proven cancer treatment while taking bogus treatments, or a "supplement" that can be harmful like "colloidal minerals"), even if you can't make the person who holds it change their mind if you can at least get others to question whether or not the person's information is valid, you can hopefully save a few.

It's the equivalent of having someone say, "This uncompleted bridge really is done; let's all go drive across to the other side," when it's dark and foggy. If you know the span ends 100 feet before the other side you have an obligation to let everyone who is getting in their car to be the first ones across the bridge know that they are going to end up crashing into the chasm/river below. It's really that simple.

Now if there were only a way to intervene with the Mr Woos of the world. He has decided to take the colloidal mineral supplement since I haven't been... I guess I should move it into my bathroom with a spoon and put the daily dose in the toilet every day? At least it would be one less bottle of aluminum, cadmium and all those other "missing" minerals he doesn't get from our "depleted soils."

Just checking to see if posting a close-italic tag would help with the formatting....

By Calli Arcale (not verified) on 17 Jul 2012 #permalink

Nope. Darn. Sorry.

By Calli Arcale (not verified) on 17 Jul 2012 #permalink

To Redloh, who said,
"“Sulfuric acid!!! EEK! How natural.
"Formulation and efficacy
"The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has listed the components as inositol, nitric acid, sodium sulfite, potassium hydroxide, sulfuric acid, and catechol. Precise formulation varies by manufacturer, and may include crocinic acid and various minerals and vitamins.[2]
Researchers at the National Cancer Institute (NCI) tested the constituents of Cancell in animal experiments in 1978 and 1980 and in vitro on human tumors in 1990 and 1991. They concluded that the compounds comprising Cancell could not be taken in doses high enough to kill cancer cells in the body, and that further study was not warranted. No peer-reviewed clinical or animal trials of Cancell have demonstrated any positive effect; claims for Cancell’s efficacy are limited to anecdotal reports and testimonials.[1] The American Cancer Society and Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center recommend against the use of CanCell, as there is no evidence that it is effective in treating any disease, and its proposed method of action is not consistent with modern science.[3][2]”

Have you actually SEEN those 1990 in vitro test results? If you have, you would not believe the above lies that Cancell or Protocel can’t kill cancer cells or that “there is no evidence that it is effective in treating any disease.” The NCI is lying to you and you believe the lies.

By John J. Luce (not verified) on 17 Jul 2012 #permalink

To Marc Stephens Is Insane, who said:
“Alright, let’s try this a different way.
Leah, one simple question. WHY do you think Protocel works? What led you to that conclusion?
OK, that’s actually two questions.”

One simple answer. Because it was shown to be effective in killing cancer cells when tested by the NCI. And people have become cancer-free using it. OK, that’s actually two answers.

By John J. Luce (not verified) on 17 Jul 2012 #permalink

@John J Luce - I haven't seen them, but I read a qualifier in this that apparently you have missed -

"They concluded that the compounds comprising Cancell could not be taken in doses high enough to kill cancer cells in the body..."

That says to me that they might have seen anti-tumor properties in the in vitro studies, but when they extrapolated that to doses high enough to be useful in the human body, the amount required was prohibitive either because of sheer volume required or side effects that would have been common because of the quantity of the more harmful ingredients ingested.

Just because something works in a culture or test tube does not necessarily mean it will be effective in the human body.

John: If Protocel does work, why have there been no successful clinical trials (on real people as opposed to cultures) in the past seventy years?

Shhh Shay - now he is going to tell us either the "look at all these positive anecdotes" thing or the "there would be no profit in it for Big Pharma without being able to patent it, so no one will invest the money to let us prove it works."

Wow, I've been hanging around woo too long. It's getting predictable.

Maybe we'll get lucky and John will come up with something more interesting?

I don't think anyone has posted this link to a short article about Cancell. It's worth a read for those interested.

By Krebiozen (not verified) on 17 Jul 2012 #permalink

To Mrs Woo, who said:
@John J Luce – I haven’t seen them, but I read a qualifier in this that apparently you have missed –
“They concluded that the compounds comprising Cancell could not be taken in doses high enough to kill cancer cells in the body…”
That says to me that they might have seen anti-tumor properties in the in vitro studies, but when they extrapolated that to doses high enough to be useful in the human body, the amount required was prohibitive either because of sheer volume required or side effects that would have been common because of the quantity of the more harmful ingredients ingested.
Just because something works in a culture or test tube does not necessarily mean it will be effective in the human body.

WHY haven’t you seen them? Do you really care about this subject? Do you really want the truth? Do you want to know ALL the facts or just mock people who may actually have more information than you do? Ordinarily I would not waste my time trying to convince the inconvincible. I don’t think you “skeptics” really want to find a cure for cancer. Maybe your funding would be eliminated if a cure were announced. Maybe you’d be out of a job. Imagine---cancer researchers with no more researching needed or oncologists with no more cancer to treat. Well, don’t worry. Just keep up your “healthy” skepticism and keep looking for the elusive cure. There will still be research dollars or medicare payments flowing endlessly to keep your paychecks coming. At least for now.

Wow…that felt good to get that out!

Now then, back to your post….

You quote, “They concluded that the compounds comprising Cancell could not be taken in doses high enough to kill cancer cells in the body…”

First, it’s “the compounds comprising Cancell” ---not Cancell itself with all its ingredients combined. You know from elementary chemistry class that when two or more elements or compounds are combined, you usually have a totally different story than any one or more separate from the others. Have you eaten any pure sodium lately? Or pure chlorine? Oh, just sodium chloride? So that statement is a smoke screen and a non-issue.

Secondly, why do you believe that statement? How did they come to that conclusion? Did they conduct human trials on “the compounds comprising Cancell,” if they even know what they are?

You can use wonderfully critical thinking to attack Cancell except when you read something that you want to believe is true based on your own groundless presuppositions. Why don’t you think critically when Cancell is being attacked? Be a skeptic of THAT and make them prove everything they say. Or are you too closed-minded or pre-judgmental for that?

Wow…that felt good, too!

By John J. Luce (not verified) on 17 Jul 2012 #permalink

What proof do you have that Protocel was the catalyst that made anyone cancer free? Oh wait, I know, because the people who sell it said so.

John:

Why haven't there been any successful clinical trials?

(golly, that felt good too).

To Redloh, who said,

"What proof do you have that Protocel was the catalyst that made anyone cancer free? Oh wait, I know, because the people who sell it said so."

No, many people were made cancer-free who took ONLY Cancell, for example, back when it was given away free. Thousands of bottles were given away free, so no seller had to say that, because there WAS no seller. But that gets expensive for the people whose only motivation is to help people, not make money. You try that. All the expenses can drain you. We won’t mention the millions (or is it billions?) made by the big pharms after spending millions to go through the drug-approval process. The inventor of Entelev/Cancell/Protocel did not have millions to do that, nor did anyone want to invest millions in that with no promise of recouping any of it.

Even today, many people are given only months to live by conventional medicine, so they turn to things like Protocel and after a few months with nothing but Protocel end up cancer-free. If it wasn’t the Protocel, what would you say? God healed them? I can live with that, but can YOU?

By John J. Luce (not verified) on 17 Jul 2012 #permalink

More on the in vitro CanCell experiments here. They used CanCell itself, not constituents thereof. Many things kill cancer cells in vitro, including a blowtorch, which is extremely effective.
Apposite quote:

Based on the manufacturer's recommended doses of a marketed brand of Cancell/Cantron/Protocel it has been calculated that under idealized conditions of absolutely no loss of the constituents after administration to a patient (i.e., 100% bioavailability, meaning no loss due to degradation, absorption in the body, or rapid excretion—an unlikely situation), the maximum concentration that could be achieved in the plasma of an average 154-lb male is 29 μg/mL (antilog of 1.46). Thus, under these highly idealized conditions Cancell/Cantron/Protocel may exhibit some mild inhibitory effect on the growth of some cancer cells, but it would not be expected to inhibit their growth completely or to kill them. There is little evidence that any of the constituents of Cancell/Cantron/Protocel would be available in the bloodstream of a patient.

Some animal experiments were also done, and I'm trying to track down those results as well.

By Krebiozen (not verified) on 17 Jul 2012 #permalink

If you look at one of the hundreds of pages of Cancell propaganda on John J. Luce's Facebook page (I guess he sells the Cancell version) you'll see the oral dose is only a quarter teaspoon (about 1.25 milllilitres) twice a day. Must be some pretty powerful stuff to "work" with such miniscule doesages.

And John J. Luce, do you also claim Cancell cures AIDS, epilepsy (in FIVE SECONDS, according to the Facebook page) and hundreds of other diseases? Or is your "market" strictly the gullible cancer patients?

I still want to know what led Leah to believe it works, but it appears she's buggered off. Chickenshit.

By Marc Stephens … (not verified) on 17 Jul 2012 #permalink

John J Luce
10:30 am Jul 17

The NCI is lying to you and you believe the lies.

And who’s lying to you?

Here’s the Appendix to those results from 1990 – 1992 you’ve been trumpeting http://www.cancer.gov/cancertopics/pdq/cam/cancell/HealthProfessional/P…
Here’s what I learned when I read it. The tests done back in 1990 and 1991 were designed to determine the concentrations needed to kill cells. In other words, they increased the concentrations until they achieved killing cells. Then they went back and compared those concentrations to the manufacturer’s recommended doses. Since there were no pharmacokinetic studies available, they assumed 100% bioavailility – in others, as if all the mixture ingested would reach the target cells inside the body.

The researchers’ conclusion (my emphasis):

Thus, under these highly idealized conditions Cancell/Cantron/Protocel may exhibit some mild inhibitory effect on the growth of some cancer cells, but it would not be expected to inhibit their growth completely or to kill them. There is little evidence that any of the constituents of Cancell/Cantron/Protocel would be available in the bloodstream of a patient.

Here’s what the American Chemical Society had to say about it (my emphasis) http://www.cancer.org/Treatment/TreatmentsandSideEffects/Complementarya…

Animal studies of Entelev® and Cancell® by the National Cancer Institute (NCI) in 1978 and 1980 found it lacked anti-cancer activity. The NCI performed another series of tests in 1990 and 1991 using human cancer cells and again did not find enough anti-cancer activity to warrant further testing.

Apparently, you are the only person who thinks that these 30+ year old in vitro results show anything worthwhile.

Thanks for sorting out the italics Orac.
To add to Chemmomo's comment, the NCI also says of CanCell:

To place the findings for Cancell/Cantron/Protocel in perspective any conventional drug exhibiting this low level of in vitro activity in the NCI human cancer cell line screen would normally not be investigated further by NCI.

By Krebiozen (not verified) on 17 Jul 2012 #permalink

I forgot to mention on John J. Luce's Facebook page beside the oral dosage CanCell can also be applied rectally, by squirting some up you-know-where. Shades of MMS!

Why are these lunatics so obsessed with enemas and inserting things rectally? Does that add to the allure, or the mysticism?

By Marc Stephens … (not verified) on 17 Jul 2012 #permalink

@John J Luce - thank you for the wonderfully amusing attack. I don't have access to journals, etc., through work and can't afford to keep that kind of access on my own. In what was posted earlier, though, it sounded like researchers didn't find adequate concentrations of the protocel/cancell/etc., in the body to do anything in their tests. That for me is an immediate "aha" moment, because a lot of things purveyed as alternative cures for cancer often fall into that predicament. When I have been able to find studies that are done on a lot of these compounds (either in vitro testing or real, double-blinded trials, not a whole bunch of anecdotes with little to no proof available), if there was any possible anti-tumor activity it is usually in vitro and either too toxic to be given in the human body in large enough doses to have any effect, or just fails to have a strong enough effect in the body. This is, of course, in its own way my own anecdote. I'm speaking from experience more than anything else here (we had a lot of "research" that went on in this house through three different family members' cancer journeys; Mr Woo, of course, loves alternative cancer therapy).
On this assertion here:

No, many people were made cancer-free who took ONLY Cancell, for example, back when it was given away free. Thousands of bottles were given away free, so no seller had to say that, because there WAS no seller. But that gets expensive for the people whose only motivation is to help people, not make money. You try that. All the expenses can drain you. We won’t mention the millions (or is it billions?) made by the big pharms after spending millions to go through the drug-approval process. The inventor of Entelev/Cancell/Protocel did not have millions to do that, nor did anyone want to invest millions in that with no promise of recouping any of it.

Even today, many people are given only months to live by conventional medicine, so they turn to things like Protocel and after a few months with nothing but Protocel end up cancer-free. If it wasn’t the Protocel, what would you say? God healed them? I can live with that, but can YOU?

How many? Was this a clinical trial? How were the results and outcomes measured? How long did they remain cancer free (if they were ever declared cancer free) before recurrence? Were there any deaths or side effects? How many? Did side effects make any discontinue treatment or were the side effects manageable?

What stage of disease were these patients in when the treatment started? Since cancer is many diseases, not one, which kinds of cancer were studied? How effective was it with each cancer? What other drugs or supplements or diet changes were done at this time? Were any of them addressed as possible confounding factors?

If there are studies you can share, please get me links to them so I can see what they determined. I'm not going to dance around like I just scored some sort of "point" or anything on this - this isn't about making me or you look uninformed or unintelligent or unhinged. This is about others who might come across this and/or lurk here who debate this issue and haven't come down on one side or the other yet, and the occasional person who might be moved to understand better that their brain can be fooled and will choose to find things that assure it what it wants to be is true while dismissing evidence that might change its mind. I want people to learn critical thinking skills. I want them to realize why these terribly expensive studies, and lots of them, are necessary to demonstrate that things said to treat illness are truly effective.

This whole system started because of a concern that people might be paying money, sometimes a lot of it, for something that would be no more effective for their illness than a spoonful of sugar or a glass of water. In order to be accepted and used, compounds must be demonstrated to work better than nothing while blinding for all of the things that a patient or researcher's prejudices and cognitive glitches might add into the mix that aren't "real" - i.e., the placebo effect, confirmation biases, etc.

The argument for "proof" isn't because people don't want to believe; it's because we want to believe in something that can be demonstrated as truly effective because it's a waste of money and time to be a patient taking a bogus treatment and sometimes can even be deadly to let them do so.

To Shay, who said,

“John:
“Why haven’t there been any successful clinical trials?
(golly, that felt good too).”

I don’t know all the answers, but lack of money is surely part of it. How much would YOU like to contribute toward the expense of doing that? It’s for a good cause, so don’t expect any return on your money, okay?

The things James Sheridan and Ed Sopcak (both died in 2001) went through to try to get their formula approved by the FDA would make a good book or movie. Suffice it to say, however, it never happened. If you really want to know the story, send me your email address and I can send you something about it. I’m at johnjluce@gmail.com. I also have a DVD that has interviews of both men that tells some of the story.

I have much information, including the NCI’s 1990 in vitro test results, in my Facebook album at:
https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.109225998965.93145.604043965&…

I am not a seller nor am I in any way connected to any seller of any of this. And I do not benefit financially by anyone buying or using this stuff. I only found out about it by word of mouth---my sister, who was dealing with her mother-in-law who had cancer and lived on a hospital bed in their living room. I truly do not think anyone connected to this stuff is in it for the money. It just isn’t that money-driven, as evidenced by the thousands of bottles given away free in the early days of development, and the relatively low cost per month of using it today. And I cannot understand why anyone would think “money” and ignore the millions made by others in the cancer industry. It is so hypocritical.

I also despise the mocking of people of faith that appears on this blog. That is so pathetic. There needs to be some respect and understanding and, yes, compassion. Many of you should be ashamed of yourselves for the way you treat people of faith. Just because you are atheists or agnostics or secularists is no reason to mock others who hold to a Judaeo-Christian tradition. Cancer touches people of all walks of life and they all have different, meaningful-to-them ways of dealing with it. If you are in the health-care field, whether as a doctor, nurse, researcher, or other similar professional, you need to make allowances for the people you are caring for or with whom you associate.

By John J. Luce (not verified) on 17 Jul 2012 #permalink

Lack of money=no clinical trials. Ahhh, the old Burzynski excuse. If this ProtoCanCelEntelev garbage showed even a trace of a whiff of potential, there would be truckloads of money flowing in from everywhere to follow up. Every manufacturer would want in to try to market it themselves.

And patents have nothing to do with drug company profitiablity. There are several brands of "aspirin" on the shelves of my local pharmacy from different manufacturers. They are all making plenty of money off a "non-patentable" (in many countries) medication.

By Marc Stephens … (not verified) on 17 Jul 2012 #permalink

I admit, John, that this was a long thread and I'm leaving soon and in a hurry, but I didn't find anything actually being verbally abusive to people of faith in this thread?

When it comes to religion, usually that is a hands off kind of thing here, with people choosing to be respectful of most faith journeys. I am a person of faith and have never encountered mockery for my beliefs here, even with a name like Mrs Woo (which had to make them wonder what side I was on at first).

Please understand that my actual goal is to make you think and realize where your mind plays tricks on you. What you are resorting to now, without attacking any one person, is "ad hominem" - you are attacking personality and behavior and not the subject at hand because you can kind of feel that you don't have adequate backing to actually defend CanCell/Cantron/Protocel, etc. I think it's a natural defensive response in arguments like these when you run out of ammunition for the real fight.

There are even a lot of researchers and medical professionals that are people who still choose to practice a religion and believe in a higher power than themselves. This is a bogus argument. Please realize we're more worried about people dying from untreated cancer than whether or not they believe in G-d, and prefer attacking poor/lacking research, unfounded claims, etc.

Mr. Luce, I see that you have what I presume to be the actual data from the NCI study on your facebook page. I have a few questions.

1. What concentration of the compound was needed to slow cell growth? What concentration was needed to stop cell growth?

2. How does this concentration compare to the recommended dose of Protocel? If it's higher or lower, how was this dose chosen?

3. Why didn't the compound work on all cancer cell lines? Is Protocel marketed toward the treatment of specific cancers, dictated by the NCI results? Why or why not?

4. How do the results of this NCI study compare to the results of a study in which a compound was approved by the NCI for clinical trials? Here's one example to get you started:
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/12467219

And some highly recommended background reading:
http://dtp.nci.nih.gov/branches/tpb/toxicology_pharmacology_primer.htm

If you are truly interested in learning, I hope you give these questions some honest thinking.

I respect anyone's beliefs in almost anything (except $cientology or other destructive cults) but it's the religious angle all these products use that bugs me. The "cures" were given by god and it's god responsible for any cure. If you don't believe in that god you are apparently not welcome or eligible to be treated.

We covered this subject a couple of weeks ago. All the Protocel websites I've seen look more like church websites than medical sites, and every second word is "praise god" or "praise Jesus." The sites the MIA Leah cited all are full of those statements.

I asked a question back then that no one answered, so I'll ask it again. And this is not trying to be antagonistic or disrespectful. It's a serious question from a non-believer:

If someone's god cured them of cancer, for instance, then why did that same god give them cancer in the first place? To make them suffer?

I'm reminded of a joke. There's a horrible flood, and the water is rising rapidly. Rescue workers in boats float up and down streets saving anyone left behind. One religioius woman, when offered a boat ride, said "no thanks, god will save me." The next day the water rose higher and the woman could only stay on the second floor of her house. Again, a rescue boat came by and she said "no thanks, god will save me." By the third day the water was so high she had to go out on the roof. Again, she refused the boat rescue. "No thanks, god will save me." Day four came and she drowned. When she got to heaven she asked god why he didn't save her. He looked a bit annoyed and said "my child, I sent you three boats..."

By Marc Stephens … (not verified) on 17 Jul 2012 #permalink

To Mrs Woo, who said

I admit, John, that this was a long thread and I’m leaving soon and in a hurry, but I didn’t find anything actually being verbally abusive to people of faith in this thread?

When it comes to religion, usually that is a hands off kind of thing here, with people choosing to be respectful of most faith journeys. I am a person of faith and have never encountered mockery for my beliefs here, even with a name like Mrs Woo (which had to make them wonder what side I was on at first).

Please understand that my actual goal is to make you think and realize where your mind plays tricks on you. What you are resorting to now, without attacking any one person, is “ad hominem” – you are attacking personality and behavior and not the subject at hand because you can kind of feel that you don’t have adequate backing to actually defend CanCell/Cantron/Protocel, etc. I think it’s a natural defensive response in arguments like these when you run out of ammunition for the real fight.

There are even a lot of researchers and medical professionals that are people who still choose to practice a religion and believe in a higher power than themselves. This is a bogus argument. Please realize we’re more worried about people dying from untreated cancer than whether or not they believe in G-d, and prefer attacking poor/lacking research, unfounded claims, etc.

You “didn’t find anything actually being verbally abusive to people of faith in this thread”? On July 6th, I told the story of Elonna McKibben, as follows:

John J. Luce
July 6, 11:53 am

So, Cancell never made it into human trials, except the thousands of humans who tried it on their own and astonished their oncologists with amazing results, including being declared cancer-free, not for just 5 years but for decades. Elonna McKibben had a malignant tumor on her spinal cord while pregnant with quintuplets. After giving birth, she was diagnosed and told she would not live to see her babies’ first birthday. Two years on Cancell resulted in her being cured of her cancer. Her children are in their twenties today and Elonna is still alive and cancer-free. She took NO conventional chemo or radiation, which she was told would have left her a paraplegic until she died. Instead she tried Cancell, nothing but Cancell, and she is cured.

To that story, “Marc Stephens is insane” posted twice, as follows:

Marc Stephens Is Insane (2 posts)

1. July 6, 12:38 pm
Check out Elonna’s deluded, unintentionally hilarious website here:
http://www.elonnamckibben.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article…
It’s full of religious garbage and thanking the lord for miracles, biblical quotes ,etc. etc.

So was it the magical syrup she took or her lord saving her? If prayer is enough why does anyone have to spend $500 every 20 days for this crap that someone cooks up in his basement on a hotplate?

Mr. Luce, you must be a shill for Protocell. How much do you get paid for promoting this dangerous, useless garbage?

2. July 6, 1:04 pm

Why is the Christian aspect so vital to this stuff, as well as MMS? Elonna’s website says that Sheridan was a Christian and that Protocell was provided by god as part of a “program”. He dreamed about a rainbow and saw the healing potential in the colours, or some nonsense like that. all due to a gift from above, of course.

This Protocell testimonial is from a faith healing website. Note this man had both surgery and chemo before trying the Protocell, but it was god who healed him.
http://www.believeinhishealing.com/
(Of course they also sell Protocell…)

Does that mean Protocell doesn’t work on Jews, Muslims or atheists, etc? Why do I have to believe in a sky fairy for a medicine to work? And if your god wanted to cure you from cancer, why did he give you cancer in the first place?

Sorry to rant, but the quackery combined with the religious mumbo-jumbo makes me angry.

By John J. Luce (not verified) on 17 Jul 2012 #permalink

I stand by everything I wrote. I was writing in the context of religion and medicine. Maybe my language was a bit strong for you but whether medicine works or not, or whether someone is healed or not, has nothing to do with any beliefs in any deity.

By Marc Stephens … (not verified) on 17 Jul 2012 #permalink

And faith healing is full of crap. No one can cure anyone or anything by "laying on of hands." See our reiki discussion for more on that subject.

I don't believe in John of God, or Benny Hinn, or Peter Popoff, who all claim to heal by touch (or in JoG's case, sometime not even by touch). They are all con artists, rich beyond belief, taking advantage of desperate and gullible people.

I'm sorry if that offends you, but it's call rap.

By Marc Stephens … (not verified) on 17 Jul 2012 #permalink

Last line should have read: ...but it's all crap.

And John J. Luce, if words offend you maybe you should have a talk with your friend Leah who has launched some nasty personal attacks here at several people, including our host Orac. She accused him of murder. Anything I wrote pales in comparison to her nasty and venomous, personal attacks.

By Marc Stephens … (not verified) on 17 Jul 2012 #permalink

Mr. Luce, if you're done being such a special little snowflake who just can't stand being offended then maybe you'll have a gander at the completely non-offensive questions in my comment at 3:51pm.

To Marc Stephens Is Insane, who said:

I respect anyone’s beliefs in almost anything (except $cientology or other destructive cults) but it’s the religious angle all these products use that bugs me. The “cures” were given by god and it’s god responsible for any cure. If you don’t believe in that god you are apparently not welcome or eligible to be treated.

We covered this subject a couple of weeks ago. All the Protocel websites I’ve seen look more like church websites than medical sites, and every second word is “praise god” or “praise Jesus.” The sites the MIA Leah cited all are full of those statements.

I asked a question back then that no one answered, so I’ll ask it again. And this is not trying to be antagonistic or disrespectful. It’s a serious question from a non-believer:

If someone’s god cured them of cancer, for instance, then why did that same god give them cancer in the first place? To make them suffer?

Your question is a valid question that probably no finite being, least of all ME, can answer adequately in a brief (or even lengthy) post on a forum such as this. Whole books have been written on subjects like, Why Do Bad Things Happen to Good People? The subject involves knowing why things happen and why an all-powerful, all-loving, and all-just, infinite Being does or allows what He does or allows. Any answer I would attempt would be disputed by you because it didn’t cover every contingency or happenstance, and you could probably think up dozens of “What about…? ‘s that I didn’t think of when I first gave my answer. You asked the question, but you should not be surprised that no one answered.

Let me offer this thought, however. ALL healing, in my humble opinion, comes from God. Even if the person is YOU, a total non-believer, getting the healing and you didn’t even ask Him for it, because, say, you don’t even believe He exists. If you got healed, HE did it. Now, He uses different ways to do that. Sometimes He uses conventional medicine, sometimes alternative approaches, sometimes nothing but the simple prayer of a humble seeker. WHY that person got sick in the first place is anybody’s guess. Sometimes the person abused his body---maybe smoked, drank excessively, ate junk food, whatever. We are all free moral agents, not robots, and God has given us a great deal of freedom to act. Sometimes we are responsible and do the right things, health-wise, and sometimes we don’t. When we get sick, it might be a warning sign that gets us to take a second look at what we have been doing that was not good that made us sick. Or, who knows, maybe God let us get sick to draw us to Himself. When we come to the end of ourselves, we are forced to look outside of ourselves, perhaps even UP to Him. In times like those, we are forced to acknowledge two things--- there is a God and we are not Him! We must acknowledge His sovereignty---He has total control, even when things look totally out of control, ultimately He is in control. And there is the element of timing. Things don’t always happen how and when we want. He controls that too.

Whenever I get sick, and let's say I'm lying on my back in my sick bed, I always ask, What did I do to deserve this? What can I do to get rid of this? Have you ever read the book of Job? Job didn't do anything bad to deserve all he went through. There was a greater purpose in God's allowing Job to go through all he did. We may never understand it and neither did Job. If you read the whole book, all 42 chapters, you find that God never explained to Job why he had to go through all he did. Well, at some point he must have, since Job wrote the book and it tells why. But in the story, God is Boss. He doesn't have to give anyone an explanation for anything!

With all that in mind, you should not be surprised that people of faith, like Elonna McKibben, has a lot of “religious mumbo jumbo” on her website. She wants to give her God the glory for the healing she received, after conventional medicine said she would not survive her cancer to see her babies’ first birthday. She would say God used Cancell to give her that healing, but ultimately she is going to praise God, so HE gets the glory, not Cancell. Consider this: No matter what medicine or radiation or alternative a person uses, if God isn’t in it and use it, that person will die. Period.

I just happen to think God uses Protocel more than cut/poison/burn. Not always. But more often than not.

By John J. Luce (not verified) on 17 Jul 2012 #permalink

Re:

I just happen to think God uses Protocel more than cut/poison/burn

God has cancer?

By Black-cat (not verified) on 17 Jul 2012 #permalink

"Consider this: No matter what medicine or radiation or alternative a person uses, if God isn’t in it and use it, that person will die. Period.

I just happen to think God uses Protocel more than cut/poison/burn. Not always. But more often than not."

Well, John J. Luce, if that's the case - why would anyone use anything at all?

How many immortals are there?

@Black-cat

God has cancer?

Maybe that is why we don't see any evidence of him/her any more. However, according to Tom Waits, God's Away on Business.

By Militant Agnostic (not verified) on 17 Jul 2012 #permalink

To AdamG, who said,

Mr. Luce, if you’re done being such a special little snowflake who just can’t stand being offended then maybe you’ll have a gander at the completely non-offensive questions in my comment at 3:51pm.

Sorry, as a special little snowflake I’m so offended by your calling me that, that I have decided to ignore your “completely non-offensive questions.”

By John J. Luce (not verified) on 17 Jul 2012 #permalink

You are ignoring them because you can't answer them.

What a waste of humanity. I'm out.

Sorry, as a special little snowflake I’m so offended by your calling me that, that I have decided to ignore your “completely non-offensive questions.”

Really? That's your response?

What do you hope to accomplish here, Mr. Luce? Because clearly you are not interested in rational discussion surrounding Protocel. From your earlier comments here:

At higher concentrations it actually is LESS effective, so when it was killing 90 to 100% of the cancer cells it was at its second from lowest concentrations

Are you open to actually discussing the evidence?
Are we just supposed to believe what you say without any discussion?
Why should we trust you any more than you trust the NCI?

To Marc Stephens Is Insane, who said

The late. great George Carlin on religion. I believe he coined the term “invisible sky fairy.”

John J. Luce, don’t watch this comedy clip. It’ll offend you.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MeSSwKffj9o

Well, I endured the whole clip, and, yes, it offended me. But more than that, it made me feel real sorry for George. You see, he made one very real mistake--- he died. On June 22, 2008, he died at the age of 71. If he could just have avoided dying, he might be okay right now. But he didn't. He died. I don't have to tell you where he is right now. He decided that for himself. Just like you and me and everyone else decides that. But poor George. He made his bed and he's lying in it. His eternity began four years ago. Can you even imagine zillions and zillions of years? It is hard enough to fathom a thousand years, we who only make it 100 years at best. But a million years or a billion years or zillions of years is just too much to grasp. For someone to risk ending up in the wrong place for that long a time, is crazy.

By John J. Luce (not verified) on 17 Jul 2012 #permalink

@john - only if you believe in the sky fairy....

Your personal beliefs have no bearing on the rest of us.

@Militant Agnostic:

Good news! Big Joe & Phantom 309 are headed over to God's house with a truckload of chicken soup for the soul.

Not a Wait's original but he sings it best.

By Black-cat (not verified) on 17 Jul 2012 #permalink

pretend for a minute that AdamG didn't write the post...pretend that I did. Now answers please!

Also, didn't God create doctors?

I know exactly where he is--his body was burned and his ashes were scattered. End of story. No surprise there was no religious ceremony.

I think we're going in circles and we're never going to agree on this, so I suggest we move the conversation back to Protocel. It's not fair to other readers to spin off on a such a tangent.

Maybe one day Orac will write an article dealing with medicine and religion and we can discuss it there.

By Marc Stephens … (not verified) on 17 Jul 2012 #permalink

@John J. Luce sermon @5:24 pm

Is it time for scripture quoting? My favourites are Hosea & Numbers...oh and there's so many more.

John, how about you quit your preaching and address the questions directed to you regarding Protocel?

By Sauceress (not verified) on 17 Jul 2012 #permalink

"It is hard enough to fathom a thousand years, we who only make it 100 years at best. But a million years or a billion years or zillions of years is just too much to grasp. For someone to risk ending up in the wrong place for that long a time, is crazy."

Indeed. I suggest you repent, provide recompense to your victims, and live a better life hereafter.

Sauceress

John, how about you quit your preaching and address the questions directed to you regarding Protocel?

Is there a difference? He's either preaching his vile hateful version of Christianity or he's preaching his vile cancer scam remedy. What kind of person worships a god who tortures people forever?

By Militant Agnostic (not verified) on 17 Jul 2012 #permalink

@Marc Stephens Is Insane (4:03 pm)

All the Protocel websites I’ve seen look more like church websites than medical sites, and every second word is “praise god” or “praise Jesus.” The sites the MIA Leah cited all are full of those statements.

It's all gone now, but Burzynski's Facebook page was the same back when Marc Stephens was all over the blogs. The first comment there was from Burzynski thanking God for choosing him and showing him "the cure". The rest of the comments read like a typical over the top religious worship site.

The religious angle comes across as being aimed at the gullible who might be more likely to believe that the devout wouldn't deliberately decieve them.

"No Siree...they be honest God-fearing folk...they wouldn't scam us."

By Sauceress (not verified) on 17 Jul 2012 #permalink

Marc Stephens & Sauceress

In America, Jesus sells almost as well as sex, so when you have a product where using sex to sell is inappropriate, Jesus is the obvious marketing strategy.

By Militant Agnostic (not verified) on 17 Jul 2012 #permalink

"I don’t know all the answers, but lack of money is surely part of it. How much would YOU like to contribute toward the expense of doing that? It’s for a good cause, so don’t expect any return on your money, okay?

You're a little unclear on the concept of capitalism, aren't you, John? If Protocel had any validity, large companies would be beating a path to the inventor's door, to purchase, develop, test and market it. You cite unsupported data and then claim that it costs too much money to run clinical trials.

Intelligent people want evidence. Facts. Corroboration. Not anecdotes. You want us to believe you, and then get your knickers in a twist because we'd like something more than your unsupported word.

I wouldn't buy a used car based solely on anecdotes from a seller, why would I buy something as important as a cancer cure? Why would anyone?

I just noticed this statement from John:

" Maybe your funding would be eliminated if a cure were announced. Maybe you’d be out of a job. Imagine—cancer researchers with no more researching needed or oncologists with no more cancer to treat."

So after everyone is cured by Protocel there will never, ever again as long as the world lasts, be another person who gets lung cancer.

Interesting concept, but how are you going to make it happen?

I think I'd have to agree that going the religious angle would be so much easier than impersonating someone with authentic knowledge regarding cancer, physiology, biochemistry and pharmacology.

By Sauceress (not verified) on 17 Jul 2012 #permalink

@Shay

Re: " just noticed this statement from John":

" Maybe your funding would be eliminated if a cure were announced. Maybe you’d be out of a job. Imagine—cancer researchers with no more researching needed or oncologists with no more cancer to treat.”

Ever think that some so these researchers and oncologists have had familiy and friends that died of cancer and have no guaranttee that they won't get struck by the cancer stick, themselves.

I wonder if John has given some thought to this.

By Black-cat (not verified) on 17 Jul 2012 #permalink

@Sauceress

Re: "I think I’d have to agree that going the religious angle would be so much easier than impersonating someone with authentic knowledge regarding cancer, physiology, biochemistry and pharmacology"

I think it depends on the site. Here it certainly would. At BCO, you have a whole host of alties claiming to be experts in the cancer, physiology, biochem, and pharm fields, who not only get away with it but are hailed as guru's that know so much more than those stupid oncologists.

i.e. vivre or lucy88

By Black-cat (not verified) on 17 Jul 2012 #permalink

@black-cat

I didn't know about the history of BCO! I will need to google some info when I find some time.

Jergen, I tried to find that newscast on the two women that were threatened and bullied but can't find it. Janelovesdogs originally posted it approximately 2 years ago. If you do a search on her you may find it. She was a hardcore bat shit crazy alite that used to go into the stage 4 forums and laugh at the women there, claiming that getting chemo when they were first diagnosed was the reason that their cancer spread. She just disappeared one day. I don't know why.

I would like to find that newscast again. Back then I did not know the full extent of how corrupt the altie forum is. I wonder if it was the alties that threatened those women.

It was taken pretty seriously by the news station and it was a good report. Maybe thenewme remembers it and can find it.

By Black-cat (not verified) on 17 Jul 2012 #permalink

Shame on you, Black-cat. Don't you know that researchers and oncologists are evil, evil scum and should be thrown in jail for murder?

After they've been injected with a fatal dose of chemo-poison.

There was only a CAM forum back then. They don't mention what forum it happened on but I have never seen that type of bullying on any of the other forums.

At any rate, I think this event gave rise to "The Planet of the Alties" and they found that all they had to do was play the victim and this ensured that they would get their way. Using buzzwords like "bully" or "stalking" were always adventageous as the mods were especially sensitive to bullying and would be sure to have a knee jerk reaction to this. Think of Pavlov's dogs. The games began and the forums became a free for all for any scamster with a political cause or looking to make an easy buck. Some of them, I wonder if they have ever had breast cancer. i.e. lucy88

By Black-cat (not verified) on 17 Jul 2012 #permalink

@John - actually, I get offended at faith healing myself and I am, as I said, someone who is faithful. Which faith and how I practice it, however, is irrelevant to this.

When someone begins mixing together treatment and faith a la "this treatment is of G-d" (like you saying Protocel is used to heal by G-d more than conventional therapy, for one), it allows people who are unscrupulous to manipulate true believers to spend money on dubious claims (if not outright lies). It seems like people who believe in a faith of some sort are also a lot more willing to trust people they don't know (especially if they speak a similar "language") than those who do not. That kind of overt willingness to exploit people using their faith really makes me angry.

Reminds me of a televangelist who told all his followers he had to raise x amount of money or G-d was "callin' him home." ~shakes head~

And then I wonder if they drink the Kool-Aid or just sell it.

So I don't mind that MSII happens to dislike religion mixed with psuedoscience. Granted, you're right, he might have come on a little strong (he acknowledges that), but he doesn't demean the belief as much as he demeans mixing that belief with the distribution or sale of an unproven, dubious cancer "cure."

I guess since I find it offensive for my own reasons I didn't pay particular attention when it was written and hadn't scrolled back far enough before leaving for my doctor appointment (I did assure you that I knew I hadn't looked at everything yet - I had no intention of actually publishing untruth).

I have been to faith healers. My disease has few good treatments and no cure. One of them, when I assured them I wasn't cured, declared me possessed. Another one just said maybe we need more fasting and prayer (strangely, that was a remark made by a first century holy man when he answered his disciples regarding why they couldn't drive out a demon that he had no trouble with - that it came out only with fasting and prayer - maybe both healers judged me the same way? Maybe you should pray for an obvious non-believer?).

@Black-cat - so they've already gotten some bad press. Maybe they need more? Then again, with so much support for 'alternative treatment' in mainstream media, people who find it dangerous might not get as much sympathy as one might hope. Then again, to a good journalist, it might be a neat story to get both sides (and hopefully be neutral enough to realize that unproven cures can be more harmful than beneficial and that the motivation of those confronting alternative methods is one of attempting to supply people with what they need to survive rather than just a battle of ideas).

@Shay

Silly me, that's right, oncologists are the spawn of Satan.

We can use the all natural ever curing protocel instead of that toxic poison chemo. Why go under the knife of a surgeon when we can just use black salve and burn our breasts off in the comfort of our own homes. Makes sense to me

@Mrs. Woo: this little publicity that I generated seems to have caused some minor changes to BCO. Apparently, nobody can use multiple identities for one ISP anymore.. Must really chafe vivre's hide.

By Black-cat (not verified) on 17 Jul 2012 #permalink

Check out this religious healer - just heard about him from a friend in Australia - total whackjob just exposed as a charlatan on a TV show

http://globalvn.com.au/sample23/

The price this guy quotes is not represented correctly on his web site but $2,500 for 1 treatment. He was setup by a current affairs program and they had a woman who had been treated successfully for stage 1 breast cancer many years before. He disgnosed that she had stage 1 bc and was now cured by his 1 treatment - total joke!!!

Will post the link to the television program when my friend sends it to me.

JJLuce, yesterday @ 5:24p:
"We are all free moral agents, not robots, and God has given us a great deal of freedom to act. Sometimes we are responsible and do the right things, health-wise, and sometimes we don’t. When we get sick, it might be a warning sign that gets us to take a second look at what we have been doing that was not good that made us sick. Or, who knows, maybe God let us get sick to draw us to Himself."

One of my patients--a beautiful, sweet, kind 6 year old girl--succumbed to Stage IV neuroblastoma last month.

Please tell me how YOUR God--your all-powerful, kind, benevolent God--would cause this to happen, and why. Don't give me the "it's all part of HIS mysterious plan." That's poor consolation, which I though was one of the primary rationales for (and benefits of) religion.

Please tell me why YOUR God--again, all-powerful--devastated New Orleans' Lower Ninth Ward--with many good, god-fearing people--and destroyed many churches on the Mississippi Gulf Coast--while somehow leaving the French Quarter (that bastion of drunkeness, gluttony, and depravity)--virtually untouched. Either He is cruel, capricious, or not quite all-powerful. In which case, why should he be worshipped?

The universe functions quite well by itself without having to drag God into it. But it takes courage to accept that, which most people cannot face.

By Cynical Pediatrician (not verified) on 18 Jul 2012 #permalink

AFriend,

According to that website you posted, this is what causes cancer This guy really is a lunatic and I'm basing my statement on this paragraph, not his religious beliefs:.

Stages of diseases

Stage 1 of Cancer occurs when you create 60 fractures in any one chakra or the Total Volume of your Anti-Clockwise Blood Cells reaches 25%. But because you have over 1570 chakras then it is impractical to measure each chakra so I have developed a more overall method by measuring the Anti-Clockwise Blood Cells (aka Cancer cells). To eliminate all the Anti-clockwise Blood Cells requires the repair of all of the fractures in every chakra in your body, otherwise metastasis will occur (Metastasis occurs when the Cancer cells move to the next lowest energy centre in your body – i.e., the chakra with the most number of fractures)

I don't care if this guy believes in god or Joe Pesci--his explanation for the cause of cancer is nutso-cuckoo.

By Marc Stephens … (not verified) on 18 Jul 2012 #permalink

What in the world are "Anti-Clockwise Blood Cells"??? Wow.

How in the world do people even begin to believe this stuff?

I just watched the video AFriend posted--what a total scumbag. I love the sting operation--at first I was afraid that poor woman was going to die of her breast cancer. Talk about a twist ending.

Most conmen (and women) scumbags have far more personality and charisma than this "Rev." Robinson--that's usually an essential part of the con. Think of all the revival tent healers and the TV healers. They sell it with their personalities. This scumbag Robinson's cheap wrinkled suit has more charisma than he does.

Has any legal action been taken or is this still in progress?

Does Australis have something similar to Britain's Cancer Act?

By Marc Stephens … (not verified) on 18 Jul 2012 #permalink

Thank you Orac for putting the disrespectful blackcat/thenewme in its place. Now that BCO is cleaning up its server of abusers (not one minute too soon IMO), it looks like you have company Lol

So we may continue to laugh at blackcat/thenewme at work doing its old dog old tricks: talking back and forth to him/herself with its personas posting within minutes of each other……a farce

JJL & Leah: I’m afraid you are wasting your time on these ‘personas’ who claim to be researchers, physicians, etc. All the ones I know are wayyyyyy too busy to spend even one minute on the net, let alone on a site such as this one. Unless, of course, they’ve all been disbarred which would account for their hateful snarky remarks and all the idle moments reading and blabbermouthing here.

But, even if that were the case, you would still be wasting your time on pseudo-skeptics – you see, they don’t even qualify as Skeptics. Here’s why:

"The terms pseudo-skepticism and pathological skepticism are used to denote the phenomena when certain forms of skepticism deviate from objectivity. Other denominations are: "irrational rationalists" and "fundamentalist materialists".

They are professional atheists (who did start an atheist thread on BCO amongst many others in their recruitment efforts) suffering from pseudo superiority and appointed followers of their blessed father figure God of the Atheists, James Randi (that cranky pathological skeptibunkie Amazing Randi) and who are having a religious experience = Righteousness

Defining characteristics of pseudo-skeptics:

The tendency to deny, rather than doubt
Double standards in the application of criticism
The making of judgements without full inquiry
Tendency to discredit, rather than investigate
Use of ridicule or ad hominem attacks
Presenting insufficient evidence or proof
Pejorative labelling of proponents as 'promoters', 'pseudoscientists' or practitioners of 'pathological science.'
Assuming criticism requires no burden of proof
Making unsubstantiated counter-claims
Counter-claims based on plausibility rather than empirical evidence
Suggesting that unconvincing evidence is grounds for dismissing it
Tendency to dismiss all evidence

Dingo-Bat.

"Defining characteristics of pseudo-skeptics:

The tendency to deny, rather than doubt
Double standards in the application of criticism
The making of judgements without full inquiry
Tendency to discredit, rather than investigate
Use of ridicule or ad hominem attacks
Presenting insufficient evidence or proof
Pejorative labelling of proponents as ‘promoters’, ‘pseudoscientists’ or practitioners of ‘pathological science.’
Assuming criticism requires no burden of proof
Making unsubstantiated counter-claims
Counter-claims based on plausibility rather than empirical evidence
Suggesting that unconvincing evidence is grounds for dismissing it
Tendency to dismiss all evidence"

Wow, sounds just like the alti bullies on BCO. You just described yourself Boudi. Amazing.

The thing that bothers me most though is that these BigPharma shills/personas who don’t suffer from cancer peddle their drugs on sites like BCO. That really rubs my a@@ the wrong way.

Blackcat/TNM, Hahahahaha - you DO have a black sense of humor, shoulda sprinkled some of that on BCO before you were permanently banned.

Nana now, gotta do something about the paranoia…….Maud ? Is she the one who recently said on BCO that you were having a serious episode of projectile vomiting on this site?

Paranoia, what a curse hey blackcat/TNM, I can see you scratching your head staring at your Excel spreadsheet, hellbent on proving to the world that you’re detective material LOL

Time now for your next pill, remember what the 'doctor' said, hein ?

Now, more on the pseudo-skeptics. I was saying:

It's a waste of time because they already have their own opinion and their belief in that view is so weak they dare not step outside the boundaries given them by their ministers.

"An authentic skeptic will look for a reason to believe; not a reason to disbelieve. They will read the original literature and let the authors try to convince them. It is really the only way that you can examine evidence objectively.

Only after they have a sufficient grounding in the area of study do they go looking for the criticism. And a real skeptic favors the opinions of people who are actively working in that area of study. They get the benefit of the doubt. Always. They know more about their subject than anyone else. The game, so to speak, is theirs to lose.

An expert is someone working in his field of study, not someone taking shots from the sidelines. Pseudo-skeptics ( "not a True Skeptic (TM)" ) arguments smack of desperation and an unreasonable demand for perfection. The complaints have a history of being trivial and of shifting to something else when they are addressed.

Pseudo-skepticism is sloppy and almost always omits positive research or treats it as irrelevant. They don’t get respect for their side of the argument. The disdain for the overall quality of pseudo-skepticism is the result of reading skeptical literature and dealing with skeptics. Most are completely underwhelmed.

Experts spent several years studying this stuff. Pseudo-skeptics not so much.

There are patterns -- constants -- common to the pseudo-skeptic and their "arguments" when it comes to any number of topics. It does not matter who it is in the conversation, they always follow this map and use the same "script". . . so much so that you could tape record it once and just let others share the original comment on play-back rather than stating it over and over again.

Cynics simply do not want to believe in anything they can't dissect and learn how to exploit for themselves. Please don't come back with the "how it can help others" in that we all know how man is only interested in helping himself stand above others and that's exactly how it would be used.

You won't change your opinion unless it is demanded of you and a skeptic who won't change is a pseudo-skeptic.
Way too much of today's skepticism brings harm to way too many people and yet, those that perpetuate that harm refuse to accept responsibility for the conflict and anxiety they've created as the result of their own zeal and venom. How is this right?

You are arrogant. You don't deserve the respect that you think you do. Show some humility.

You come off with a "high & mighty" position. It is a trait that is very common and pronounced even, in the majority of naysayers and one of those things that put "us' on edge. Think of how fun it would be to have to defend your life and your personal "novelty" 24/7.

Consider how much joy exists in a person's life when they are being damned to hell by the holy rollers and promoted as con-artists and criminals by the so-called intellectuals of society.

Einstein used to claim; in fact, most of the great physicist, mathematicians, etc. from the dark ages forward, were men (and a few women) of god -- people with exceptionally strong faith, that sought to better define the Divine and it's greatness by way of science"

Careful REDBLOTCH/blackcat/TNM, you're claws are showing, you're becoming more and more transparent, Lol

PseudoSkeptics vs. True Skeptics:
Comparison Chart of Characteristics and Behaviors

All pseudoskeptics will claim to be true skeptics. But regardless of how they define themselves, a pseudoskeptic is a pseudoskeptic if their characteristics and behaviors fit the traits of one. So it doesn't matter what they call themselves, because actions speak louder than words.

Here is a comparison chart of the differences between the traits of a true skeptic vs. a pseudoskeptic:

True Skeptics / Open-Minded Skeptics

• Questions everything and takes nothing on faith, even from cherished established institutions.
• Asks questions to try to understand new things and are open to learning about them.
• Applies critical examination and inquiry to all sides, including their own.
• Withholds judgment and does not jump to rash conclusions.
• Seeks the truth and considers it the highest aim.
• Thinks in terms of possibilities rather than in preserving fixed views.
• Fairly and objectively weighs evidence on all sides.
• Acknowledges valid convincing evidence rather than ignoring or denying it.
• Possess solid sharp common sense and reason.
• Are able to adapt their paradigms to new evidence and update their hypothesis to fit the data.
• When all conventional explanations for a phenomenon are ruled out, are able to accept paranormal ones.
• Accepts that there are mysteries and revels in trying to understand them.
• Views science as a tool and methodology, not as a religion or authority to be obeyed. Understands the difference between the scientific process and the scientific establishment.
• Acknowledges that the scientific establishment is subject to politics, corruption, control, censorship and suppression, as all human based institutions are - and therefore must be critically examined and scrutinized, rather than taken on faith, especially in the light of contrary evidence to their claims.
• Will admit they are wrong when the evidence calls for it.

PseudoSkeptics / Closed-Minded Skeptics

• Does not question anything from established non-religious institutions, but takes whatever they say on faith and demands that others do the same.
• Does not ask questions to try to understand new things, but judges them by whether they fit into orthodoxy.
• Applies "critical thinking" only to that which opposes orthodoxy or materialism, but never to the status quo itself.
• Immediately judges as false and debunks anything that contradicts their paradigm.
• Are not interested in truth, evidence or facts, only in defending their views.
• Cannot think in terms of possibilities, but sees their paradigms as fixed and constant.
• Are willing to lie and deceive to discredit their opponents.
• Automatically dismisses and denies all data that contradicts materialism and orthodoxy.
• Are judgmental and quick to draw conclusions about things they know little or nothing about.
• Scoffs and ridicules what they oppose instead of using objective analysis and examination.
• When faced with evidence or facts they can't refute, uses semantics, word games and denial to try to obfuscate the issue.
• Unable to adapt their paradigms to new evidence, and denies data which doesn't fit into them.
• When all conventional explanations for an unexplainable phenomenon are ruled out, are still not able to accept paranormal ones.
• Dislikes mystery and uncertainty, and insist that all unknown phenomena must have a mundane explanation.
• Views the scientific establishment as a religion and authority to be taken on faith and never questioned or challenged. Does not understand the difference between the scientific process/methodology and the scientific establishment institution.
• Assumes that the scientific establishment is objective and unbiased, and free of politics, corruption, control, censorship and suppression for no other reason than blind faith in authority.
• Will never admit that they are wrong no matter what, regardless of evidence

Boudicca, care to highlight any particular arguments on this blog that you find 'pseudoskeptical'? I'd be happy to honestly debate any such claims with you.

Thank you Boudicca for that well thought out information. I always thought those calling themselves "skeptics" didn't understand the term and they were really just generalized, bar room nay-sayers.

But I haven't examined or analyzed their behaviors as carefully as you have. Well done. I look forward to more of your analyses.

Pseudoskeptics New Anti Troll Laws Big Bucks Already in Arizona, Australia and Scotland

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z7oeCTtBgvo

Pseudo-skeptics are not just wrong and fallacious in their reasoning and approach with outright rejection of anything that doesn't fit into a materialist orthodox paradigm. They've also, knowingly or unknowingly, engaged in deceptive mind control by hijacking critical terms to mean their OPPOSITE, including the very term "skeptic" itself. And they've hid what they truly are (suppressors of new ideas) by pretending to the opposite of what they are.

As mentioned earlier, a skeptic doubts, inquires, questions, ponders, etc. But these pseudo-skeptics do anything but. They attack, ridicule, discredit and suppress anything and everything that challenges the materialist reductionist paradigm. But don't take my word for it. Just look at any article by James Randi, Michael Shermer, or Skeptical Inquirer, for example, and you will see that there is no questioning of what they are told, doubt or pondering of possibilities at all.

All they do is ridicule and attack anything related to paranormal and psychic phenomena, holistic medicine, and conspiracies. That's not what skepticism is. The founder of the term itself meant this:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Skeptic

• In classical philosophy, skepticism refers to the teachings and the traits of the 'Skeptikoi', a school of philosophers of whom it was said that they 'asserted nothing but only opined.' (Liddell and Scott) In this sense, philosophical skepticism, or Pyrrhonism, is the philosophical position that one should suspend judgment in investigations.

And according to Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary, a skeptic is:

"One who is yet undecided as to what is true; one who is looking or inquiring for what is true; an inquirer after facts or reasons."

Now, take Michael Shermer for example. He is a professional skeptic who runs a Skeptic magazine, which makes him a prominent skeptic in the movement. But does he do any of the above? Does he doubt or question authority or orthodoxy? Does he ponder possibilities and the mysteries and wonders of life? Does he engage in a nonjudgmental open search for truth? No.

All he does is try to debunk and discredit. Just look at every article he writes and you will see that. Yet he is one of the "big name skeptics!" What does that tell you?!

So you see, these pseudoskeptics hijack the term "skeptic" so that it can't be used against them. By calling themselves "skeptics", they cast themselves as THE "skeptics" who question everything with critical thinking and doubt. And if you are a skeptic or critical thinker, then you will agree with them, so they hope.

Similarly, they've done the same with the terms "reason, rationality, logic, critical thinking, scientific" as well by hijacking them to fit their agenda, so that they support their agenda of discrediting anything related to paranormal, holistic or conspiratorial evidence.

In essence, what they've done is put themselves in a position of "ultimate authority" on reason, rationality, logic, critical thinking, etc. so that if you call yourself those things, then you must agree with them and their position. As such, being "reasonable and rational" means to AGREE with them. And "critical thinking" can only be used to reject what they reject, never to critique the pseudo-skeptics themselves, according to their paradigm, for they are "the critiquers".

Thus, they've made it so that "critical thinking" and "skepticism" can't be used against them, because they are THE "critical thinkers and skeptics". It's a very sly form of mind control that obfuscates the terms and attempts to shield them from "criticism" by putting them in the highest position of criticism.

As such, the term "skeptic" now refers to the one who suppresses and attacks the questioner, rather than the questioner himself. In other words, the new "skeptic" is someone who debunks a "skeptic" by wearing the hat of the person they are out to debunk, in effect impersonating them! It's a highly deceptive form of role reversal that is sneaky and deceptive.

Fortunately though, the true skeptics, critical thinkers and freethinkers see through this BS and call them on it, expose this mind control and hijacking of terms to mean their opposite.

This whole movement of hijacking important words to mean their opposite, and militant suppression of new ideas, seems way too calculated and organized to be due to simple sheer human ignorance and narrow mindedness alone. Instead, it's more indicative of an agenda, such as a disinformation or mind control campaign. This isn't to say that all pseudo-skeptics are disinfo agents. But some might be, either knowingly or unknowingly. You have to remember that we are all mind controlled to some degree, one way or another. Even if these pseudo-skeptics are not knowingly involved in a disinfo campaign, they are likely to be mind controlled themselves by a disinfo/thought suppression campaign.

It's a definite possibility, since after all, this world has more dark secrets than one can imagine, and most things are not what they appear to be. There is no question that they have hijacked terms and pretended to be the opposite of what they are.

By hiding behind the mask of critical rational thinkers and skeptics, they've hidden the fact that they are suppressors of new ideas that challenge old paradigms, thus making themselves look forward and progressive, rather than backwards and suppressive.

Now, this form of hiding what you are by pretending to be the opposite of what you are is nothing new. It's a classic form of mind control.

Boudicca, unless you have a specific argument to make against any of the claims raised on this thread, I suggest you take your copypasta somewhere else.

They are professional atheists

Apparently, you haven't bothered to look around here much.

Adam, no I don't care to

This whole thread - have not read any other here and I don't care to - reeks of gym room BO & sweat.

If only blackcat/TNM and a few 'others' would put away their smelly sneakers, pouach !

That's fine. You clearly have nothing to contribute as all of your posts are copied from other writers.

Boudicca = altie bully on some sort of hallucinatory drug

no I don’t care to

That's fine. You clearly have nothing to contribute as all of your posts are copied from other writers.

Hello Maud. Boudicca is bat shit crazy maud on BCO. I think her other personas were patsy and rainbowpony.

It looks like you have been copying & pasting rants from Timmy Bolen. Unlike BCO, over here at RI, it's customary to give credit where credit is due. Poaching other people's words is frowned upon.

I have some advice for you, Maud. Take the Arimidex that your oncologist prescribed for you. Just becasuse Vivre told you that you should listen to your "woman's intuition" on your deciscion is not a good reason not to take it. She was really advertising Christine Northrup's book to you. Did you go to vivre's amazon bookstore and purchase the book from her? You call others stupid and crazy and you make a possible life threatening decision on your gut feeling. What's wrong with this picture?

By Black-cat (not verified) on 18 Jul 2012 #permalink

You're welcome D ;)

The pseudo-skeptic User Manual:

Before commencing to debunk, prepare your equipment.
Equipment needed: one armchair.

PUT on the right face. Cultivate a condescending air that
suggests that your personal opinions are backed by the full faith and credit of God.
EMPLOY vague, subjective, dismissive terms such as
"ridiculous" or "trivial" in a manner that suggests they have the full force of scientific authority.
PORTRAY science not as an open-ended process of discovery but as a holy war against unruly hordes of quackery-worshipping infidels. Since in war the ends justify the means, you may fudge, stretch or violate scientific method, or even omit it entirely, in the name of defending scientific method.
KEEP your arguments as abstract and theoretical as possible. This will "send the message" that accepted theory overrides any actual evidence that might challenge it--and that therefore no such evidence is worth examining.
REINFORCE the popular misconception that certain subjects are inherently unscientific. In other words, deliberately confuse the *process* of science with the *content* of science. (Someone may, of course, object that science must be neutral to subject matter and that only the investigative *process* can be scientifically responsible or irresponsible. If that happens, dismiss such objections using a method employed successfully by generations of politicians: simply reassure everyone that "there is no contradiction here.")
ARRANGE to have your message echoed by persons of
authority. The degree to which you can stretch the truth is directly proportional to the prestige of your mouthpiece.
ALWAYS refer to unorthodox statements as "claims," which
are "touted," and to your own assertions as "facts," which are "stated."
AVOID examining the actual evidence. This allows you to say with impunity, "I have seen absolutely no evidence to support such ridiculous claims!" (Note that this technique has withstood the test of time, and dates back at least to the age of Galileo. By simply refusing to look through his telescope, the ecclesiastical authorities bought the Church over three centuries' worth of denial free and clear!)
IF examining the evidence becomes unavoidable, report back that "there is nothing new here!" If confronted by a watertight body of evidence that has survived the most rigorous tests, simply dismiss it as being "too pat."
EQUATE the necessary skeptical component of science with *all* of science. Emphasize the narrow, stringent, rigorous and critical elements of science to the exclusion of intuition, inspiration, exploration and integration. If anyone objects, accuse them of viewing science in exclusively fuzzy, subjective or metaphysical terms.
INSIST that the progress of science depends on explaining the unknown in terms of the known. In other words, science equals reductionism. You can apply the reductionist approach in any situation by discarding more and more and more evidence until what little is left can finally be explained entirely in terms of established knowledge.
DOWNPLAY the fact that free inquiry, legitimate
disagreement and respectful debate are a normal part of science.
AT EVERY OPPORTUNITY reinforce the notion that what is
familiar is necessarily rational. The unfamiliar is therefore
irrational, and consequently inadmissible as evidence.
STATE CATEGORICALLY that the unconventional arises
exclusively from the "will to believe" and may be dismissed as, at best, an honest misinterpretation of the conventional.
MAINTAIN that in investigations of unconventional
phenomena, a single flaw invalidates the whole. In conventional contexts, however, you may sagely remind the world that, "after all, situations are complex and human beings are imperfect."
"Occam's Razor," or the "principle of parsimony," says the
correct explanation of a mystery will usually involve the simplest fundamental principles. Insist, therefore, that the most familiar explanation is by definition the simplest! Imply strongly that Occam's Razor is not merely a philosophical rule of thumb but an immutable law.
DISCOURAGE any study of history that may reveal today's
dogma as yesterday's heresy. Likewise, avoid discussing the many historical, philosophical and spiritual parallels between science and democracy.
SINCE the public tends to be unclear about the distinction
between evidence and proof, do your best to help maintain this murkiness. If absolute proof is lacking, state categorically that there is no evidence.
IF sufficient evidence has been presented to warrant
further investigation of an unusual phenomenon, argue that
"evidence alone proves nothing!" Ignore the fact that preliminary evidence is not supposed to prove *anything*.
In any case, imply that proof precedes evidence. This will
eliminate the possibility of initiating any meaningful process of investigation--particularly if no criteria of proof have yet been established for the phenomenon in question.
INSIST that criteria of proof cannot possibly be established
for phenomena that do not exist!
ALTHOUGH science is not supposed to tolerate vague or double standards, always insist that unconventional phenomena must be judged by a separate, yet ill-defined, set of scientific rules. Do this by declaring that "extraordinary claims demand extraordinary evidence"--but take care never to define where the "ordinary" ends and the "extraordinary" begins. This will allow you to manufacture an infinitely receding evidential horizon, i.e., to define "extraordinary" evidence as that which lies just out of reach at any
point in time.
PRACTICE debunkery-by-association. Lump together all
phenomena popularly deemed paranormal and suggest that their proponents and researchers speak with a single voice. In this way you can indiscriminately drag material across disciplinary lines or from one case to another to support your views as needed. For example, if a claim having some superficial similarity to the one at
hand has been (or is popularly assumed to have been) exposed as fraudulent, cite it as if it were an appropriate example. Then put on a gloating smile, lean back in your armchair and just say "I rest my case."
USE the word "imagination" as an epithet that applies only
to seeing what's *not* there, and not to denying what *is* there.
IF a significant number of people agree that they have
observed something that violates the consensus reality, simply ascribe it to "mass hallucination." Avoid addressing the possibility that the consensus reality, which is routinely observed by millions, might itself constitute a mass hallucination.
RIDICULE, RIDICULE, RIDICULE. It is far and away the single most chillingly effective weapon in the war against discovery and innovation. Ridicule has the unique power to make people of virtually any persuasion go completely unconscious in a twinkling. It fails to sway only those few who are of sufficiently independent mind not to buy into the kind of emotional consensus that ridicule provides.
By appropriate innuendo and example, imply that ridicule
constitutes an essential feature of scientific method that can raise the level of objectivity, integrity and dispassionateness with which any investigation is conducted.
IMPLY investigators of the unorthodox are zealots.
Suggest that in order to investigate the existence of something one must first believe in it absolutely. Then demand that all such "true believers" know all the answers to their most puzzling questions in complete detail ahead of time. Convince people of your own sincerity by reassuring them that you yourself would "love to believe in these
fantastic phenomena." Carefully sidestep the fact that science is not about believing or disbelieving, but about finding out.
USE smoke and mirrors," i.e., obfuscation and illusion.
Never forget that a slippery mixture of fact, opinion, innuendo, out-of-context information and outright lies will fool most of the people most of the time. As little as one part fact to ten parts B.S. will usually do the trick. (Some veteran debunkers use homeopathic dilutions of fact with remarkable success!) Cultivate the art of
slipping back and forth between fact and fiction so undetectably that the flimsiest foundation of truth will always appear to firmly support your entire edifice of opinion.
EMPLOY 'TCP': Technically Correct Pseudo-refutation.
Example: if someone remarks that all great truths began as
blasphemies, respond immediately that not all blasphemies have become great truths. Because your response was technically correct, no one will notice that it did not really refute the original remark.
TRIVILIAZE the case by trivializing the entire field in
question. Characterize the study of orthodox phenomena as deep and time consuming, while deeming that of unorthodox phenomena so insubstantial as to demand nothing more than a scan of the tabloids. If pressed on this, simply say "but there's nothing there to study!" Characterize any serious investigator of the unorthodox as a "buff"
or "freak," or as "self-styled"-the media's favorite code-word for "bogus."
REMEMBER that most people do not have sufficient time or
expertise for careful discrimination, and tend to accept or reject the whole of an unfamiliar situation. So discredit the whole story by attempting to discredit *part* of the story. Here's how: a) take one element of a case completely out of context; b) find something prosaic that hypothetically could explain it; c) declare that therefore that one element has been explained; d) call a press conference and announce to the world that the entire case has been explained!
ENGAGE the services of a professional stage magician who can mimic the phenomenon in question; for example, ESP, psychokinesis or levitation. This will convince the public that the original claimants or witnesses to such phenomena must themselves have been (or been fooled by) talented stage magicians who hoaxed the original phenomenon in precisely the same way.
FIND a prosaic phenomenon that resembles, no matter how superficially, the claimed phenomenon. Then suggest that the existence of the commonplace look-alike somehow forbids the existence of the genuine article. For example, imply that since people often see "faces" in rocks and clouds, the enigmatic Face on Mars must be a similar illusion and therefore cannot possibly be artificial.
WHEN an unexplained phenomenon demonstrates evidence of intelligence (as in the case of the mysterious crop circles) focus exclusively on the mechanism that might have been wielded by the intelligence rather than the intelligence that might have wielded the mechanism. The more attention you devote to the mechanism, the more easily you can distract people from considering the possibility of nonphysical or nonterrestrial intelligence.
ACCUSE investigators of unusual phenomena of believing in "invisible forces and extrasensory realities." If they should point out that the physical sciences have *always* dealt with invisible forces and extrasensory realities (gravity? electromagnetism? . . . ) respond with a condescending chuckle that this is "a naive interpretation of the facts."
INSIST that western science is completely objective, and is
based on no untestable assumptions, covert beliefs or ideological interests. If an unfamiliar or inexplicable phenomenon happens to be considred true and/or useful by a nonwestern or other traditional society, you may therefore dismiss it out of hand as "ignorant
misconception," "medieval superstition" or "fairy lore."
LABEL any poorly-understood phenomenon "occult,"
"paranormal," "metaphysical," "mystical" or "supernatural." This will get most mainstream scientists off the case immediately on purely emotional grounds. If you're lucky, this may delay any responsible investigation of such phenomena by decades or even centuries!
ASK questions that appear to contain generally-assumed
knowledge that supports your views; for example, "why do no police officers, military pilots, air traffic controllers or psychiatrists report UFOs?" (If someone points out that they do, insist that those who do must be mentally unstable.)
ASK unanswerable questions based on arbitrary criteria of
proof. For example, "if this claim were true, why haven't we seen it on TV?" or "in this or that scientific journal?" Never forget the mother of all such questions: "If UFOs are extraterrestrial, why haven't they landed on the White House lawn?"
REMEMBER that you can easily appear to refute anyone's
claims by building "straw men" to demolish. One way to do this is to misquote them while preserving that convincing grain of truth; for example, by acting as if they have intended the extreme of any position they've taken. Another effective strategy with a long history of success is simply to misreplicate their experiments--or to avoid replicating them at all on grounds that to do so would be ridiculous or fruitless. To make the whole process even easier,
respond not to their actual claims but to their claims as reported by the media, or as propagated in popular myth.
INSIST that such-and-such unorthodox claim is not
scientifically testable because no self-respecting grantmaking organization would fund such ridiculous tests.
BE SELECTIVE. For example, if an unorthodox healing method has failed to reverse a case of terminal illness you may deem it worthlesswhile taking care to avoid mentioning any of the shortcomings of conventional medicine.
HOLD claimants responsible for the production values and
editorial policies of any media or press that reports their claim. If an unusual or inexplicable event is reported in a sensationalized manner, hold this as proof that the event itself must have been without substance or worth.
WHEN a witness or claimant states something in a manner
that is scientifically imperfect, treat this as if it were not
scientific at all. If the claimant is not a credentialed scientist,
argue that his or her perceptions cannot possibly be objective.
IF you're unable to attack the facts of the case, attack the
participants--or the journalists who reported the case. Ad-hominem arguments, or personality attacks, are among the most powerful ways of swaying the public and avoiding the issue. For example, if investigators of the unorthodox have profited financially from activities connected with their research, accuse them of "profiting financially from activities connected with their research!" If their research, publishing, speaking tours and so forth, constitute their normal line of work or sole means of support, hold that fact as
"conclusive proof that income is being realized from such
activities!" If they have labored to achieve public recognition for their work, you may safely characterize them as "publicity seekers."
FABRICATE supportive expertise as needed by quoting the
opinions of those in fields popularly assumed to include the
necessary knowledge. Astronomers, for example, may be trotted out as experts on the UFO question, although course credits in ufology have never been a prerequisite for a degree in astronomy.
FABRICATE confessions. If a phenomenon stubbornly refuses to go away, set up a couple of colorful old geezers to claim they hoaxed it. The press and the public will always tend to view confessions as sincerely motivated, and will promptly abandon their critical faculties. After all, nobody wants to appear to lack compassion for self-confessed sinners.
FABRICATE sources of disinformation. Claim that you've
"found the person who started the rumor that such a phenomenon exists!"
FABRICATE entire research projects. Declare that "these
claims have been thoroughly discredited by the top experts in the field!" Do this whether or not such experts have ever actually studied the claims, or, for that matter, even exist.

IF NOTHING WORKS AND ALL ELSE FAILS, USE BATTERY ACID, BUT MAKE SURE IT IS STILL CORROSIVE

And Boudie, like the other alties, refuses resolutely to answer any questions addressed to her and admit she has not read the thread.

But feels qualified to comment on it anyway. Amazing.

Hey, I just heard on BCO that battery acid can cure cancer! Orally, rectally or IV.

By Marc Stephens … (not verified) on 18 Jul 2012 #permalink

Boudicca

Why do you think that Orac let you post page after page of nonsense? Is it

a) You think that he is too openminded to delete your material
b) You think that he hasn't figured out how to delete your lies
c) You think that he doesn't realize that you have completely exposed him
d) You think that he'll send you a check if you make alties look stupid enough

The pseudo-skeptic User Manual

You left off "© 1997 by Daniel Drasin."

@Narad:

Maud (boudicca) is infamous at BCO for pouching whatever she likes off the internet and claiming it as her own work.

By Black-cat (not verified) on 18 Jul 2012 #permalink

make that poaching

By Black-cat (not verified) on 18 Jul 2012 #permalink

I've never really understood what the goal of copypasta is, as a tactic. Why bother? What's the point?

She will also interlace the piece that she stole off the internet with a few idiotic sentences or her own. It's easy to tell where.

By Black-cat (not verified) on 18 Jul 2012 #permalink

Apparently we struck a nerve and Boudi went into nonsense overdrive.

Thank you Boudicca.

This manual could have been used by The Flat Earth Society :)

After the predictable pseudoskeptical responses you got, you are entitled to say, "I rest my case!"

Pseudoskeps don't realize when they walk into a trap of their own devising.

Still describing yourself. Bodie

D - weren't you the guy who claimed that he had never heard of Protocel until a few days ago? I guess you were lying.

Yep, Boudicca is Maud.

I have great sympathy for the REAL physicians who treat these people.

Who is D? Possibly vivre?

By Black-cat (not verified) on 18 Jul 2012 #permalink

Boudicca

The pseudo-skeptic User Manual:
Before commencing to debunk, prepare your equipment.
Equipment needed: one armchair.
PUT on the right face. Cultivate a condescending air that
suggests that your personal opinions are backed by the full faith and credit of God.

Thanks for that Boudicca (btw you do understand about citing other's work ?) it describes the peddlers of pseudoscience & scam miracle cures to a T.

By Sauceress (not verified) on 18 Jul 2012 #permalink

Excellent article Sauceress!!

I don't think I've never seen any pseudoskepticism here, just reasonable requests for some reliable evidence to support people's claims. Refusing to accept anecdotal evidence and unsupported assertions doesn't seem unreasonable to me. Perhaps that's because I'm not an idiot.

By Krebiozen (not verified) on 18 Jul 2012 #permalink

Let me see-
Well, I'm still trying to figure out the 'nym and analogy:
brave rebel queen defends her homeland from foreign hostile occupiers and then dies. She loses.
Which makes us Roman legions, SBM the empire, Orac a general, the internet E. Anglia, comments projectiles.... and eventually the more technologically advanced culture prevails overtaking the more primitive tribal one. That's not so bad.

By Denice Walter (not verified) on 18 Jul 2012 #permalink

Or even "I've ever seen".

By Krebiozen (not verified) on 18 Jul 2012 #permalink

I also thought it an excellent article from a great site that I just bookmarked. Thanks for posting it, Sauceress!

By Black-cat (not verified) on 18 Jul 2012 #permalink

@ black-cat -
Perhaps D is Kaara?
It isn't abigail, that's for sure. :-)
And JLW is now posting as "Joy."

@AFriend

Actually I was sent a link to that article along with a link to the Robinson cancer scam on ACA. Not by a mutual friend...I checked :)

By Sauceress (not verified) on 18 Jul 2012 #permalink

@JK

Yes, I can see D as Kaara. Good call. JoyLiesWIthin now becomes just Joy. She changes her identity more than Prince formally known as ....?

By Black-cat (not verified) on 18 Jul 2012 #permalink

Speaking of Joy, where's Leah?

By Black-cat (not verified) on 18 Jul 2012 #permalink

The above article also reinforces the fact that the same avenues of cognitive dissonance are cultured by pseudoscience junkies of all flavours.

...and seeing as she/he/it likes that kind of thing so much, here's some copypasta for Boudicca.

"Skepgoating: why antivaxxers need to devalue skepticism"

Skepgoating: Skepgoating (adj) is derived from the notion of scapegoating. It refers to the practice of falsely accusing (scientific) skepticism, skeptics or other individuals of pursuing predetermined agendas derived from distortions of (scientific) skepticism. Used as both defence and attack it aims to cast the other party as inferior, negative and wrong. Particularly found within or in relation to discourse in which truth can demonstrably be derived from evidence. In this way the accuser seeks to drive onlooker or reader attention away from the lack (or presence) of evidence and evoke an irrational and emotional response toward the individual or organisation being skepgoated.

Claims made in skepgoating are false. Rather than address evidence, attempts are made to malign the other party to such an extent that a Faux Victory is claimed. Eg: “Skeptics worship science and are too close minded to understand”. Or, “Skeptics want to suppress your freedom of speech and your right to choose”. Or, “Skeptics want to do bad things to me, that is why they say words that make me appear stupid”.
Skepgoating is also used by certain cult-like groups to imply skepticism by association, by group members who exhibit independent thinking. In such cases skepgoating may have similar power to the belief in witchcraft leading to swift and disproportionate retribution directed at the skepgoat (n). Banishment of the skepgoat and expunging of their visible history follows in an attempt to convey unity to remaining cult members. Dominant or Alpha skepgoaters decide who will be deemed a skepgoat.

By Sauceress (not verified) on 18 Jul 2012 #permalink

Now where have I seen that before? Sounds so familiar. I just can't place the website that I experienced this on.

By Black-cat (not verified) on 18 Jul 2012 #permalink

I seem to remember it as being a non profit website and the first letter began with a B.

By Black-cat (not verified) on 18 Jul 2012 #permalink

@D (4:30 pm)

After the predictable pseudoskeptical responses you got, you are entitled to say, “I rest my case!”

Predictable.

Claims made in skepgoating are false. Rather than address evidence, attempts are made to malign the other party to such an extent that a Faux Victory is claimed.

Oh what fun...yawn..

By Sauceress (not verified) on 18 Jul 2012 #permalink

So, Boudicca.

Let me see if I'm following you.

If a believer tells a skeptic "look at the evidence for this holistic paranormal thing I want you to believe in!!" it seems like the skeptic has only two options in your paradigm: either the skeptic says "Oh yes! So completely correct; clearly the lint in your bellybutton is proof of Morgellons chemtrails HAARP GMOs!" or they say "Sorry, I don't find the evidence provided to be of the extraordinary quality that would be needed to support the extraordinary thesis you've presented." And in the latter case, you declare them a pseudoskeptic instead of a skeptic, and declare that they only found the evidence unconvincing because they didn't look at all the evidence.

Right so far?

And yet when it's suggested that you check the accuracy of the insults you have hurled at us by looking at other threads on this site, you answer that you don't care to.

Can you answer the one question: under what single standard do you believe that skeptics are obligated to do more than you yourself are willing to do to try and support your beliefs?

Now unfortunately since you've shown a propensity to change the subject instead of answering questions respectfully directed to you, we need to set up something in the nature of an ultimatum. If you make three comments, on this thread or any other, without giving an answer to the question, the third such comment will be taken as your admission that you have no answer. It's one of the only ways to deal with people who constantly change the subject in order to try and gain an advantage.

By Antaeus Feldspar (not verified) on 18 Jul 2012 #permalink

Boudicca is obviously a one-trick "copypasta and run" troll.

Ever-dense as a substitute for evidence.

By Sauceress (not verified) on 18 Jul 2012 #permalink

Sauceress,

I have learned not to be drinking or eating anything when I read your posts. I spit milk all over my computer screen when I read your troll comment. Had quite the clean up to do. Ever think of doing stand up comedy? You would be good at it.

By Black-cat (not verified) on 18 Jul 2012 #permalink

That was the first troll comment to Leah that I was referring to. Too funny.

By Black-cat (not verified) on 18 Jul 2012 #permalink

Since it's apparently impossible to be skeptical of both "the man" and my own subjective experience at the same time, my brain most certainly will explode now.

5-4-3-2-1............

Dang. Still here. Guess my brain has a mind of its own. (insert rimshot).

By Infuriatingly … (not verified) on 18 Jul 2012 #permalink

@Spam master Boudicca - I'm trying to find your Einstein quote exactly as stated and can't, though I find it on a lot of stuff just like you pasted in here it is never a real quote. Could you please help me and send me a reference that says where it comes from? Thank you.

I'm trying to figure this out - it sounds like you've pulled up your armchair and put the appropriate attitude on already for sure.

See, when someone insists that they want to see proof of concept, they have studies that show the limits and how much better the recommended treatment is than placebo (which is pretty much water/sugar, etc.). I have never heard an honest doctor, etc., claim that they could guarantee a cure. They will give you honest percentages and tell you why (and what studies brought them to that conclusion, if you ask) they are recommending a certain treatment.

Since you're suggesting that we're dismissing evidence out of hand, what evidence do you have that I can look at? I'm willing to examine anything. I bet that most cancer researchers are, too, if the treatment makes sense (i.e., saying that if you stood on your head fifteen minutes of every hour for at least six hours in a row every day would cure cancer would probably be considered an unlikely claim).

What frustrates people like me (I can only speak for me and from personal experience) is people who make outrageous claims with no real evidence (stories over the internet don't count if I can't verify them, etc.) and try to sell people on things that won't work and may very well be harmful for them (i.e. cesium chloride, laetrile). Also don't like it when people frighten rather than encourage patients who are already pretty doggone scared in an attempt to get them to avoid treatment with real studies for an unproven and often ineffective "cure."

Why does that make me a bad person? I've been subjected to a ton of useless alternative treatments that have done nothing but wasted money and made me sick just because Mr Woo would rather buy hope than deal with reality and patience and keep watching/reading real research to see what is "coming down the pike," so to speak.

@Boudicca

Read my comment at 3:36pm. It was held in moderation so you may not have seen it. Oddly enough, I see you more as one of BCO's victims as opposed to one of the predators. Sometimes the lines are blurred. You are just too ignorant to seperate the wheat from the chaff.

By Black-cat (not verified) on 18 Jul 2012 #permalink

I’m trying to find your Einstein quote exactly as stated and can’t

This?

"Einstein used to claim; in fact, most of the great physicist, mathematicians, etc. from the dark ages forward, were men (and a few women) of god — people with exceptionally strong faith, that sought to better define the Divine and it’s greatness by way of science"

It's a broken cut-and-paste from here.

Boudicca,

Orac covered the stupidity of Christine Northrup's stupid idea of "using your inner wisdom to make your health choices"

"If you want evidence that Dr. Northrup has truly gone completely woo, look no further than this next passage:

As with anything, I suggest you let your inner guidance help you in all decisions about your health. If you feel it’s best to get an annual mammogram, then by all means continue with them. Just be aware of the drawbacks and risks associated with the test

". Her statements are scientifically unjustified, profoundly unethical, and potentially dangerous to patients. Pure ridiculousness doesn’t even come close to describing them. Many are the women whom I’ve met who “just knew” they were fine until their family persuaded them to undergo mammography, which then found real, invasive cancers. I don’t have much faith in anyone’s “inner guidance” with regard to asymptomatic disease. In essence, Northrup is urging women to base their health care decisions on intuition rather than science"

http://scienceblogs.com/insolence/2010/10/13/the-huffington-post-promot…

By Black-cat (not verified) on 18 Jul 2012 #permalink

vivre used you for her own sick and selfish agenda. If you don't want to take the arimidex, base it on a sound scientific decision rather than your woman's intuition or gut feeling that you should not be taking it.

By Black-cat (not verified) on 18 Jul 2012 #permalink

Black-cat
Thank the sycophants of the pseudoscience "miracle cure" cults.
Just so much material to work with. I occasionally have cause to briefly wonder if the trolls are in fact Poes out to ridicule all these miracle cancer cure scam alties. Alas I know that's not the case.
~~~

@Thomas (July 18, 4:00 pm)

Boudicca
Why do you think that Orac let you post page after page of nonsense? Is it

I'm going for answer d)

d) You think that he’ll send you a check if you make alties look stupid enough

By Sauceress (not verified) on 18 Jul 2012 #permalink

Thank you Narad!

Craig is correct in his comment about looking for a reason to believe, this is how the skeptics of the 19th and early 20th century (at least in the magic world) approached things even before Houdini's famed campaigns. The goal was to "find god" so to speak, which was also one of the things Einstein used to claim; in fact, most of the great physicist, mathematicians, etc. from the dark ages forward, were men (and a few women) of god -- people with exceptionally strong faith, that sought to better define the Divine and it's greatness by way of science.

So it was only insinuating that Einstein said it. How wonderfully disingenuous. It didn't sound like anything I've ever read quoting Einstein before. He was, in some ways, a pantheist, but didn't believe in the typical dogmatic type of faith with a personified divinity. Sometimes I wonder if that is where my own faith journey will ultimately take me.

Boudicca,
You really don't get it, do you?

This blog post is about Entelev, CanCell, and Cantron (and Protocel) and quacks who sell it to cancer patients.

It's a very important and relevant post to me as a cancer patient myself, who is frustrated by these lowlife quacks promoting it in lieu of *real* treatment for cancer. It's disgusting and despicable to me that anyone could stoop so low as to prey on cancer patients. Believe me, if Protocol had ANY legitimate evidence of working, I'd be all over it. I'd love nothing more than to find that simply drinking a quarter-teaspoon of the stuff 12 times a day or whatever, was the cure. So would every other cancer patient and friend/family member I know! All we are asking for is evidence.

What do you have to hide? Why do you and the other Protocel promoters become so defensive and unhinged when we ask for real information? Where is the data to support its efficacy and safety? Really, I just don't get what's so hard about it.

The way I see it, either you (not necessarily you in particular, but anyone who promotes or sells it) offer up some legitimate information or you're simply making shit up.

Antaeus Feldspar has put forth a reasonable challenge to you several times here, so what's it gonna be?

By the way, I'm not Black-Cat or Redblotch (???) or anyone else. You have so many facts so very, very mixed up, but my identity aside, what about the topic of discussion here?

@thenewme:

In this case I would not be opposed to the topic changed to "listening to your woman's intuition"according to vivre's mentor, Christine Norhrup.

Budicca is obviously maud on bco. If you do a search, you will see that vivre has talked maud out of taking Arimidex as prescribed by her MO. The premise was "your intuition knows so much more than doctors"

Vivre has been vomiting out the same story over and over for the past two years of how she put her newly prescribed Arimidex in her mouth, got hit by women's intuitiion, and not only spit the pills out but hurled her toxic pill bottle across the room and was cleansed of the devil. Amen. Christine Norhrup and vivres website are than promoted.

Maud is her most recent victim.

By Black-cat (not verified) on 18 Jul 2012 #permalink

thenewme,

Has it really been two years that we have been fighting cancer quackery with the alties on BCO? You have been at it much longer than me. How time flies.

By Black-cat (not verified) on 18 Jul 2012 #permalink

Seems longer than that :)

Yes, you two my friend. Thanks for the email! I did not want to lose touch with you. We should give ourselves a name. The BCO altie battle was bravely carried out.

By Black-cat (not verified) on 18 Jul 2012 #permalink

I can't seem to spell on this site to save my life

By Black-cat (not verified) on 18 Jul 2012 #permalink

I was always better at science than english

By Black-cat (not verified) on 18 Jul 2012 #permalink

Welcome to the pseudoskeps' Psychic Friends Network.

@blackcat, do you know who wrote this manual? Also I'm curious to know is it a required reading in Chemical School?

[The pseudo-skeptic User Manual:

Before commencing to debunk, prepare your equipment.
Equipment needed: one armchair.

PUT on the right face. Cultivate a condescending air that
suggests that your personal opinions are backed by the full faith and credit of God.
EMPLOY vague, subjective, dismissive terms such as
“ridiculous” or “trivial” in a manner that suggests they have the full force of scientific authority.
PORTRAY science not as an open-ended process of discovery but as a holy war against unruly hordes of quackery-worshipping infidels. Since in war the ends justify the means, you may fudge, stretch or violate scientific method, or even omit it entirely, in the name of defending scientific method.
KEEP your arguments as abstract and theoretical as possible. This will “send the message” that accepted theory overrides any actual evidence that might challenge it–and that therefore no such evidence is worth examining.
REINFORCE the popular misconception that certain subjects are inherently unscientific. In other words, deliberately confuse the *process* of science with the *content* of science. (Someone may, of course, object that science must be neutral to subject matter and that only the investigative *process* can be scientifically responsible or irresponsible. If that happens, dismiss such objections using a method employed successfully by generations of politicians: simply reassure everyone that “there is no contradiction here.”)
ARRANGE to have your message echoed by persons of
authority. The degree to which you can stretch the truth is directly proportional to the prestige of your mouthpiece.
ALWAYS refer to unorthodox statements as “claims,” which
are “touted,” and to your own assertions as “facts,” which are “stated.”
AVOID examining the actual evidence. This allows you to say with impunity, “I have seen absolutely no evidence to support such ridiculous claims!” (Note that this technique has withstood the test of time, and dates back at least to the age of Galileo. By simply refusing to look through his telescope, the ecclesiastical authorities bought the Church over three centuries’ worth of denial free and clear!)
IF examining the evidence becomes unavoidable, report back that “there is nothing new here!” If confronted by a watertight body of evidence that has survived the most rigorous tests, simply dismiss it as being “too pat.”
EQUATE the necessary skeptical component of science with *all* of science. Emphasize the narrow, stringent, rigorous and critical elements of science to the exclusion of intuition, inspiration, exploration and integration. If anyone objects, accuse them of viewing science in exclusively fuzzy, subjective or metaphysical terms.
INSIST that the progress of science depends on explaining the unknown in terms of the known. In other words, science equals reductionism. You can apply the reductionist approach in any situation by discarding more and more and more evidence until what little is left can finally be explained entirely in terms of established knowledge.
DOWNPLAY the fact that free inquiry, legitimate
disagreement and respectful debate are a normal part of science.
AT EVERY OPPORTUNITY reinforce the notion that what is
familiar is necessarily rational. The unfamiliar is therefore
irrational, and consequently inadmissible as evidence.
STATE CATEGORICALLY that the unconventional arises
exclusively from the “will to believe” and may be dismissed as, at best, an honest misinterpretation of the conventional.
MAINTAIN that in investigations of unconventional
phenomena, a single flaw invalidates the whole. In conventional contexts, however, you may sagely remind the world that, “after all, situations are complex and human beings are imperfect.”
“Occam’s Razor,” or the “principle of parsimony,” says the
correct explanation of a mystery will usually involve the simplest fundamental principles. Insist, therefore, that the most familiar explanation is by definition the simplest! Imply strongly that Occam’s Razor is not merely a philosophical rule of thumb but an immutable law.
DISCOURAGE any study of history that may reveal today’s
dogma as yesterday’s heresy. Likewise, avoid discussing the many historical, philosophical and spiritual parallels between science and democracy.
SINCE the public tends to be unclear about the distinction
between evidence and proof, do your best to help maintain this murkiness. If absolute proof is lacking, state categorically that there is no evidence.
IF sufficient evidence has been presented to warrant
further investigation of an unusual phenomenon, argue that
“evidence alone proves nothing!” Ignore the fact that preliminary evidence is not supposed to prove *anything*.
In any case, imply that proof precedes evidence. This will
eliminate the possibility of initiating any meaningful process of investigation–particularly if no criteria of proof have yet been established for the phenomenon in question.
INSIST that criteria of proof cannot possibly be established
for phenomena that do not exist!
ALTHOUGH science is not supposed to tolerate vague or double standards, always insist that unconventional phenomena must be judged by a separate, yet ill-defined, set of scientific rules. Do this by declaring that “extraordinary claims demand extraordinary evidence”–but take care never to define where the “ordinary” ends and the “extraordinary” begins. This will allow you to manufacture an infinitely receding evidential horizon, i.e., to define “extraordinary” evidence as that which lies just out of reach at any
point in time.
PRACTICE debunkery-by-association. Lump together all
phenomena popularly deemed paranormal and suggest that their proponents and researchers speak with a single voice. In this way you can indiscriminately drag material across disciplinary lines or from one case to another to support your views as needed. For example, if a claim having some superficial similarity to the one at
hand has been (or is popularly assumed to have been) exposed as fraudulent, cite it as if it were an appropriate example. Then put on a gloating smile, lean back in your armchair and just say “I rest my case.”
USE the word “imagination” as an epithet that applies only
to seeing what’s *not* there, and not to denying what *is* there.
IF a significant number of people agree that they have
observed something that violates the consensus reality, simply ascribe it to “mass hallucination.” Avoid addressing the possibility that the consensus reality, which is routinely observed by millions, might itself constitute a mass hallucination.
RIDICULE, RIDICULE, RIDICULE. It is far and away the single most chillingly effective weapon in the war against discovery and innovation. Ridicule has the unique power to make people of virtually any persuasion go completely unconscious in a twinkling. It fails to sway only those few who are of sufficiently independent mind not to buy into the kind of emotional consensus that ridicule provides.
By appropriate innuendo and example, imply that ridicule
constitutes an essential feature of scientific method that can raise the level of objectivity, integrity and dispassionateness with which any investigation is conducted.
IMPLY investigators of the unorthodox are zealots.
Suggest that in order to investigate the existence of something one must first believe in it absolutely. Then demand that all such “true believers” know all the answers to their most puzzling questions in complete detail ahead of time. Convince people of your own sincerity by reassuring them that you yourself would “love to believe in these
fantastic phenomena.” Carefully sidestep the fact that science is not about believing or disbelieving, but about finding out.
USE smoke and mirrors,” i.e., obfuscation and illusion.
Never forget that a slippery mixture of fact, opinion, innuendo, out-of-context information and outright lies will fool most of the people most of the time. As little as one part fact to ten parts B.S. will usually do the trick. (Some veteran debunkers use homeopathic dilutions of fact with remarkable success!) Cultivate the art of
slipping back and forth between fact and fiction so undetectably that the flimsiest foundation of truth will always appear to firmly support your entire edifice of opinion.
EMPLOY ‘TCP’: Technically Correct Pseudo-refutation.
Example: if someone remarks that all great truths began as
blasphemies, respond immediately that not all blasphemies have become great truths. Because your response was technically correct, no one will notice that it did not really refute the original remark.
TRIVILIAZE the case by trivializing the entire field in
question. Characterize the study of orthodox phenomena as deep and time consuming, while deeming that of unorthodox phenomena so insubstantial as to demand nothing more than a scan of the tabloids. If pressed on this, simply say “but there’s nothing there to study!” Characterize any serious investigator of the unorthodox as a “buff”
or “freak,” or as “self-styled”-the media’s favorite code-word for “bogus.”
REMEMBER that most people do not have sufficient time or
expertise for careful discrimination, and tend to accept or reject the whole of an unfamiliar situation. So discredit the whole story by attempting to discredit *part* of the story. Here’s how: a) take one element of a case completely out of context; b) find something prosaic that hypothetically could explain it; c) declare that therefore that one element has been explained; d) call a press conference and announce to the world that the entire case has been explained!
ENGAGE the services of a professional stage magician who can mimic the phenomenon in question; for example, ESP, psychokinesis or levitation. This will convince the public that the original claimants or witnesses to such phenomena must themselves have been (or been fooled by) talented stage magicians who hoaxed the original phenomenon in precisely the same way.
FIND a prosaic phenomenon that resembles, no matter how superficially, the claimed phenomenon. Then suggest that the existence of the commonplace look-alike somehow forbids the existence of the genuine article. For example, imply that since people often see “faces” in rocks and clouds, the enigmatic Face on Mars must be a similar illusion and therefore cannot possibly be artificial.
WHEN an unexplained phenomenon demonstrates evidence of intelligence (as in the case of the mysterious crop circles) focus exclusively on the mechanism that might have been wielded by the intelligence rather than the intelligence that might have wielded the mechanism. The more attention you devote to the mechanism, the more easily you can distract people from considering the possibility of nonphysical or nonterrestrial intelligence.
ACCUSE investigators of unusual phenomena of believing in “invisible forces and extrasensory realities.” If they should point out that the physical sciences have *always* dealt with invisible forces and extrasensory realities (gravity? electromagnetism? . . . ) respond with a condescending chuckle that this is “a naive interpretation of the facts.”
INSIST that western science is completely objective, and is
based on no untestable assumptions, covert beliefs or ideological interests. If an unfamiliar or inexplicable phenomenon happens to be considred true and/or useful by a nonwestern or other traditional society, you may therefore dismiss it out of hand as “ignorant
misconception,” “medieval superstition” or “fairy lore.”
LABEL any poorly-understood phenomenon “occult,”
“paranormal,” “metaphysical,” “mystical” or “supernatural.” This will get most mainstream scientists off the case immediately on purely emotional grounds. If you’re lucky, this may delay any responsible investigation of such phenomena by decades or even centuries!
ASK questions that appear to contain generally-assumed
knowledge that supports your views; for example, “why do no police officers, military pilots, air traffic controllers or psychiatrists report UFOs?” (If someone points out that they do, insist that those who do must be mentally unstable.)
ASK unanswerable questions based on arbitrary criteria of
proof. For example, “if this claim were true, why haven’t we seen it on TV?” or “in this or that scientific journal?” Never forget the mother of all such questions: “If UFOs are extraterrestrial, why haven’t they landed on the White House lawn?”
REMEMBER that you can easily appear to refute anyone’s
claims by building “straw men” to demolish. One way to do this is to misquote them while preserving that convincing grain of truth; for example, by acting as if they have intended the extreme of any position they’ve taken. Another effective strategy with a long history of success is simply to misreplicate their experiments–or to avoid replicating them at all on grounds that to do so would be ridiculous or fruitless. To make the whole process even easier,
respond not to their actual claims but to their claims as reported by the media, or as propagated in popular myth.
INSIST that such-and-such unorthodox claim is not
scientifically testable because no self-respecting grantmaking organization would fund such ridiculous tests.
BE SELECTIVE. For example, if an unorthodox healing method has failed to reverse a case of terminal illness you may deem it worthlesswhile taking care to avoid mentioning any of the shortcomings of conventional medicine.
HOLD claimants responsible for the production values and
editorial policies of any media or press that reports their claim. If an unusual or inexplicable event is reported in a sensationalized manner, hold this as proof that the event itself must have been without substance or worth.
WHEN a witness or claimant states something in a manner
that is scientifically imperfect, treat this as if it were not
scientific at all. If the claimant is not a credentialed scientist,
argue that his or her perceptions cannot possibly be objective.
IF you’re unable to attack the facts of the case, attack the
participants–or the journalists who reported the case. Ad-hominem arguments, or personality attacks, are among the most powerful ways of swaying the public and avoiding the issue. For example, if investigators of the unorthodox have profited financially from activities connected with their research, accuse them of “profiting financially from activities connected with their research!” If their research, publishing, speaking tours and so forth, constitute their normal line of work or sole means of support, hold that fact as
“conclusive proof that income is being realized from such
activities!” If they have labored to achieve public recognition for their work, you may safely characterize them as “publicity seekers.”
FABRICATE supportive expertise as needed by quoting the
opinions of those in fields popularly assumed to include the
necessary knowledge. Astronomers, for example, may be trotted out as experts on the UFO question, although course credits in ufology have never been a prerequisite for a degree in astronomy.
FABRICATE confessions. If a phenomenon stubbornly refuses to go away, set up a couple of colorful old geezers to claim they hoaxed it. The press and the public will always tend to view confessions as sincerely motivated, and will promptly abandon their critical faculties. After all, nobody wants to appear to lack compassion for self-confessed sinners.
FABRICATE sources of disinformation. Claim that you’ve
“found the person who started the rumor that such a phenomenon exists!”
FABRICATE entire research projects. Declare that “these
claims have been thoroughly discredited by the top experts in the field!” Do this whether or not such experts have ever actually studied the claims, or, for that matter, even exist.

IF NOTHING WORKS AND ALL ELSE FAILS, USE BATTERY ACID, BUT MAKE SURE IT IS STILL CORROSIVE]

Oh my..
The poor dears have been reduced to spamming. That really is sad.

By Sauceress (not verified) on 19 Jul 2012 #permalink

So Leah did you read Boudicca's last string of comments? We are all familiar to that and wish you could at least credit your source if you are simply going to cut and paste her cut and paste.

Leah - were you too lazy to read up above and see we have already had your manual published.

Ultimatum question time, Leah: Under what single standard is it disrespectful to point out that a 75-year-old woman’s behavior is irrational when she self-diagnoses AIDS and then self-diagnoses herself as cured of AIDS, but perfectly respectful to claim Orac has a “Murder Degree”? Not answering within your next three comments will be taken as an affirmative admission that you have no answer, and are simply living by a double standard.

Leah's up to two of her three. I'm surprised that under those circumstances she would waste her time simply copying her fellow altie's spam. But then again, what other choice does she have?

By Antaeus Feldspar (not verified) on 19 Jul 2012 #permalink

Leah,
Is there any legitimate evidence that shows Protocel is a safe and effective treatment for breast cancer?

@leah

How utterly amusing, you can't think of a single coherent argument and are reduced to copy-pasting and plagiarism. Guess that you automatically admit you forfeit the argument.

@novalox,
What's that old saying.... something like "If you can't dazzle them with brilliance, then bury 'em with BS???"

The walls of copypasta (love that term!) are straight from the skepgoating (love that one too!) playbook.

@Leah and Boudicca - would you please answer questions instead of just copy and pasting implied insults (apparently you've run out of the creativity necessary to create your own)?

Please give me links to read the studies showing how effective Protocel is. Let me see them and read them. I would love to know the research.

So far, you only give me vague anecdotes about how well it was doing for so many people over history - no blinding, no adjustment for confounding factors, just anecdotes. Please give me a study of a group of people with some given standard treatment and others Protocel, or placebo and Protocel. Show me that it works. Is that too much to ask?

If you're pushing a product at scared patients that has absolutely no real proof or history of effective treatment, you're practically a murderer, and definitely a fraud.

"Never try to teach a pig to sing. It wastes your time and annoys the pig.". Robert Heinlein

Leah,

AVOID examining the actual evidence. This allows you to say with impunity, “I have seen absolutely no evidence to support such ridiculous claims!” (Note that this technique has withstood the test of time, and dates back at least to the age of Galileo. By simply refusing to look through his telescope, the ecclesiastical authorities bought the Church over three centuries’ worth of denial free and clear!)

Where is this actual evidence we are refusing to look at? If you honestly believe that Cancell works, I suggest you read this article to see what sort of evidence would be acceptable.

By Krebiozen (not verified) on 19 Jul 2012 #permalink

@leah

I believe somebody has already pointed out the author of that "manuel" , when Boudicca tried to claim it as her own work.

What on earth is chemical school?

By Black-cat (not verified) on 19 Jul 2012 #permalink

<

do you know who wrote this manual? Also I’m curious to know is it a required reading in Chemical School?

Apparently, the very thread you're commenting in isn't "a required reading" in whatever pedagogical tradition you yourself have oozed from.

More banning on BCO going on - still the altie sock puppets get away with it.

Whose getting banned? Someone told me that mauds out. I wonder if vivre now has to choose with one of her eleven identities to keep.

By Black-cat (not verified) on 19 Jul 2012 #permalink

@Blackcat
Sunflowers

Not an altie - Sunflowers was banned for a response she sent to a PM from the mods - really really crazy decision.

The mods seem to be very emotional women who have knee jerk reactions to events without thinking.

I noticed a mob like hysteria that grows bigger and bigger when a new altie announces she will be curing herself with althernative medicine. The altie is cheered on by the mob and a lynch mob mentality will attack anybody who tries to dissent and bring the voice of reason to the thread.

This happened with wornoutmom, chilli, katrn and one other person that I cant think of right now. This is actually something new that has evolved on the altie thread. It did not happen to impositive when she annouced that cancer was a fungas and she was going to cure herself with dusting her breast with antifungals and drinking baking soda.

The mods joined in with wornoutmom. After I posted to Chilli that black salve was a scam, a support thread was started. I posted twice to support her, wanting to get the black salve thread buried and forgotten. The mods deleted both posts which were just my words of encouragement. You can still see these posts if you search my name. Under name searches you can still see a lot of the posts that were deleted by the mods by who wrote them. I did not break any forum rules. Right after they deleted those posts they banned me the first time. I emailed them numeros times but was ignored. I did not do anything to deserve getting banned. Before this they always answered my emails. I guess they were ticked off at me for being chillis party pooper. You can also see how JoyLIesWithin went ballistic with posts that I was going to drive Chilli to suicide and that her family would come back and sue BCO. She created a mob like hysteria after my post

By Black-cat (not verified) on 19 Jul 2012 #permalink

Ok, so I have been lurking on this site since all the s*** went down. My background -I'm over on BCO with the same username. (I am constantly amazed that people have more than one identity - folks need to get a hobby!)

I guess I would be considered kind of an altie on this blog, although I consider myself more of an integrative person - I did all the conventional treatments, ACT, surgery, radiation, Herceptin, and now I'm on Tamoxifen. However, I also did and continue to do a lot of CAM treatments and therapies that I think reduce side effects, risk of recurrence, etc. I really like Dr. Block and Dr. Servan-Schreiber's books. I feel that my CAM/diet/exercise strategies really helped me sail through chemo and radiation and heal super fast from surgery. At one point, my onc looked at me and said, "I wish we could study people like you."

That being said, I would not recommend alternatives in lieu of conventional treatment save for two situations. 1.) they absolutely can't do chemo due to something super serious like congestive heart failure. I feel for those ladies - has to be a tough choice. 2.) The doctors have declared that there is nothing left to do from the conventional options.

Outside of those two situations, I tend to encourage an integrative approach similar to what I did.

So that's a little bit about me. I didn't always agree with BlackCat, but I'm really bummed that she isn't on BCO anymore. That just isn't right. I didn't always love the tone of her posts, but I also never thought she was bullying anyone. She is clearly extremely smart and really knows how to read studies. I'll miss her perspective.

On the flip side, I don't think Kat is a scammer - I think she is a real woman having success with Protecel (for whatever reason.) I don't know why she is having regression, but she said her scans show regression, so that is a good thing in my book. When you are Stage IV, you have a lot of treatments in front of you. If she is having regression on Protecel, then she doesn't have to do chemo right now. I like Kat; she seems like a very nice person and I hope that she lives a long, long time.

I'd also like to say that most of the women on the alt boards are pretty balanced. A lot of them are women like me who are using CAM treatments in an integrative fashion.

Finally, if anyone is really PMing newbies to talk them out of chemo, that's epically uncool. You have enough crap to deal with after a cancer diagnosis without having someone you don't know shove their beliefs down your throat.

So...just weighing in as a regular on the Alt Forum on BCO. I guess I wanted to post because the general belief here is that all the alt women on BCO are crazy lunatics who are trying to bilk everyone out of money. In reality, I think we are a bunch of women trying to do everything we can to beat cancer.

By sweetbean (not verified) on 19 Jul 2012 #permalink

@ Black-cat:

Sometimes people cheer others on because they need to rally their own spirits and quash their own doubts.

I think you might do better work away from there: you can't convince the true believers and perhaps you have already resonated with those who have some doubts.

I personally try to speak to those with a similar perspective to my own AND to those currently on the fence: perhaps what I say might be enough to 'turn the tide'.

Some are just unreachable: I wouldn't expect a partisan to convert solely because of what I say but I would hope to influence incremental learning ( or doubting) on their part. I only comment on blogs that represent my own beliefs- not on contrarians'- I don't want them to have the e-mail I use and most of them censor heavily anyway.

On a blog like RI, for every person who 'speaks up', there are several ( maybe many) lurkers who may be influenced by what you say. I would purely guess but do venture that those who stick around are not the absolute contrarians but those who want to learn from our esteemed and gracious host and our fabulous commenters even though they might still be on the fence. Learning is incremental and it takes time.

By Denice Walter (not verified) on 19 Jul 2012 #permalink

@Denice,
I know what you're saying, but (!). I'm not black-cat, but my rationale for posting skeptical and evidence-based information on BCO was exactly that - to reach the fence sitters.

One example you'll recognize is Paul "Nodules" Hill. He came onto BCO, a forum full of breast cancer patients desperately seeking information, and tells them they can just follow his ketone diet regimen and throw away their evil Big Pharma meds. (Oh, and his woo supposedly works to cure diabetes, epilepsy, obesity, migraines, etc., too!). He had some big fans there, begging him for more information on his miraculous cure.

Another great example is a recent poster who had a very large grade III DCIS breast tumor, and she wanted to avoid all conventional treatment, even surgery to remove it! She was cheered on by the same people, calling her brave and heroic and clever for daring to stand up to the medical industrial complex.

I don't believe they're all real, legitimate posters, but as a BC patient myself, I can't just stand by and let this kind of dangerous misinformation stand unchallenged. So it's not only the original poster I'm trying to reach, but also the silent non-posting lurkers who may be reachable.

Some people seem to think it's a game or simply an academic exercise, but for me on that particular forum, I can't help looking at it from a life-or-death perspective.

Now Athena has been banned - going crazy over there!!!

@ the newme:

I hope you continue.
Some of what you, Black-cat and others comment about the true believers@ BC.org shows us why it's important for us all to combat pseudo-science.
Woo wastes time, effort, money and LIFE.

By Denice Walter (not verified) on 19 Jul 2012 #permalink

Believe that there is a paucity of good moderators there. It's one or more and they are screwing up one ban at a time. Running off some of the best and the brightest. Meanwhile the sock puppet reigns supreme.

Read that maud was booted too. Not sad about that one.

@DeniceWalters:

The pms that I received from the fence sitters and seeing the traffic that the altie forums generated (lurkers) kept me going.

I thought of you when I posted about the mass hysteria and wondered if it was anything you encountered in your career or read about.

When a member announces that she is going to cure herself with her own concoction, the hysteria and elation justs builds and they seem to feed off of each other. Even though they seem to be in a state of euphoria, the atmosphere feels tense and anxious to me. These actions are not of reasonable and rational people.

@AFriend:

Which althea was banned and what for?

By Black-cat (not verified) on 19 Jul 2012 #permalink

@DeniseWalters:

There also seems to be an urgency to these and the tension seems to keep building. More and more alties jump on board as the thread progresses. It's like they are under the influence of some kind of drug and any attempt to bring them down will be met with extreme anger.

By Black-cat (not verified) on 19 Jul 2012 #permalink

It was Athena1. Now apparently the person who mentioned that on the thread has gotten booted too.

Mod on steroids?

But, the resonance who was booted for mentioning that Athena was booted only had one post. Another alter ego perhaps?

Rn auto correct! The person who was booted....

Did they say why she was booted?

By Black-cat (not verified) on 19 Jul 2012 #permalink

Athena was banned for a couple of comments that were removed, so I don't know what they said. They would have been rage about Sunflowers being banned.

It's for 10 days I think - usual thing if comments removed I guess

@ Black-cat:

There's a lot of stuff in the literature about how people behave in crowds or cohesive groups- in general, there is more extremism in both action and speech. There's a concept called 'Groupthink" that is usually about bad decision making by governments wherein the insulated group thinks it can't be wrong, feels righteous, demonises and kicks out dissenters- this might be vaguely applicable.

Here's one thing to keep in mind: there will always be groups who have odd ideas and they will cluster together; the internet makes that easier. There's only so much that we can do. I know for certain that at least 2 of the 'writers' ( and I do use that term loosely) at Age of Autism really dislike what I have to say and think that I don't know about what I'm speaking. I take that as a compliment because they have poor judgment and bad taste. And I'm in good company. Illustrious company actually.

You and the other SB refugees from BC.org have important work to do.

By Denice Walter (not verified) on 20 Jul 2012 #permalink

@Black-cat,
I think there is some groupthink involved, but honestly, I think it's more of a feeding frenzy type reaction. As you know, most of them are financially involved with woo commerce. They make money by either selling directly or profiting indirectly from shilling the stuff, so they feel threatened when confronted with questions and facts.

Also, as you know, most of them are heavily involved politically with the Health Freedom garbage, Canary Party, libertarian movement, anti-science partisan propaganda, etc. Of course these agenda-based groups are also extremely intolerant of threatened by evidence-based science and factual information. They're truth-phobic to the point of paranoia and frantic derangement, which is demonstrated perfectly by the recent posts here and on BCO (and elsewhere, of course).

I wouldn't be surprised at all to see the frenzy level continue to escalate between now and November 6. Ack.

Huh. This is fascinating to me. I really must not be paying attention. I had no idea people were selling stuff.

By sweetbean (not verified) on 20 Jul 2012 #permalink

@sweetbean
Yep, nearly all of the "regulars" there are selling stuff. Some of 'em say they're not "selling," since they're just shills who receive a commission from the sales, but it's pretty clear. Do a search there for things like Usana, protocel, infrared saunas, rebounders, naturalnews, mercola, ineways, essanatural, melaleuca, rethinkthepink, etc. They're all there, hidden in plain sight. Allowed and encouraged on BCO. Almost all the "natural girls" have clear vested interests in promoting these scam treatments.

Wikipedia has some good information on "roach baiting," or stealth marketing / guerilla marketing. Unfortunately for real breast cancer patients, these scamsters have found a great target audience at BCO. It's a terrible shame, especially when legitimate posters are systematically driven away. BCO is becoming just another whaleto or National Enquirer instead of a fantastic valuable resource for breast cancer patients. Sad.

@thenewme,

I hadn't heard of essanatural, but there is someone on the forum whose screen name is, in part, essa. Have I just connected more dots, or is that really unrelated?

@black-cat,
I mentioned upthread that maybe D is Kaara. Now, perhaps, I think it might be dianeessa? Or someone named dunesleeper?

@sweetbean,
I have been a lurker at BCO for a while and want to thank you, too, for the information you've shared.

I, too, am a BC patient, and received a two-for-one treatment special: IIIC lobular on the left, IA ductal on the right. TAC*6, L mast, R lump, recon, bilateral rads, tamox.

It makes me nuts when I see those oh-so-rebellious alties patting themselves on the back for refusing some conventional treatments. Well, if I had "only" a Stage 0 or 1, grade 1, hormone-positive tumor, and/or was 70+ and didn't need rads, I might have foregone some of these things, too. But I wouldn't be smug about it - I'd be utterly thrilled to have dodged some of these bullets and I'd keep my mouth shut about it around women who didn't.

Leah:

"The pseudo-skeptic User Manual:"

Wow. That sounds like a lot of effort. No wonder you stick with the "Scammers Manual" - it's a lot easier

"Lie and lie again"

@thenewme: Oof. I didn't know that. That's not cool. How many people are we talking about?

@JK - nice to meet you. Glad I could share some useful information!

By sweetbean (not verified) on 20 Jul 2012 #permalink

@JK, yes, I agree. Sometimes the women come across as gloating and that is bothersome. My tumor was the size of a lemon, Grade 2-3, lymph node involvement, LVI, and I had just turned 37. My sister told me that if I had decided against conv treatments, she was going to "chase me around with a needle and a bag of chemo."

By sweetbean (not verified) on 20 Jul 2012 #permalink

@JK - yep. Keep connecting those same dots and you'll find yourself in one of the tangled webs they weave (...where they practice to deceive!). There's womens fiction, BHRT anti-aging products, organic fertilizer, etc., etc., etc! Of course they all lead right back to the bottom line ($$$) consisting of MLM scams, fraudulent quackery, affiliate network marketing, etc.

@sweetbean, I know. Not cool at all. I honestly don't know how many people (and/or how many sockpuppets) we're talking about, but it's just sick, isn't it?

Oh, and just to clarify, I personally have no problem with people earning income by selling products, including books, fertilizer, supplements, or whatever (when promoted and sold honestly and ethically!).

I have a huge problem with misinformation, distorted half-truths, and outright lies, especially when targeted to vulnerable audiences like on a breast cancer support forum.

Unfortunately, the examples I posted above are NOT promoted/sold honestly and ethically. Ack.

I'm no where near as good at connecting dots as the thenewme and black cat, but the more I visited the Alt forum the more it seemed like a commercial shill for books, supplements and then these scary, useless debunked therapies.

I don't look anymore and I don't ever refer newbies it that forum even if they ask about some weird substance that is the new cure.

I'll admit, I'm one of the dumb ones at BCO. I want to believe people are merely sharing their own personal stories, not trying to sell me something. Maybe I'm naive, but I was really surprised when that protocel journey thread ended up with the author sulking because no one wanted the information on how to buy the stuf.

Forget connectintg the dots..I didn't even know there WERE dots until reading this blog.

Paranoids will always find dots to follow. That's why they're called paranoids.

@ thenewme
The claim that all the "natural girls" are selling something has no evidence. For someone who demands evidence, you offer only innuendo. Which is even less than a "testimonial."

@ABCDEFG
I know! I wanted to believe it too. I soooo wanted to find useful and legitimate complementary/alternative options that might give me a treatment edge, since I'm triple neg and have done all the conventional options (surgery, rads, and chemo). Unfortunately, the more I researched and the longer I read the forums there, the more clear it became that most of them there just "happen" to be sellers/affiliates/distributors/partners of whatever treatment they are praising. The protocel thing is one good example, as are the others I mentioned above. The shills don't like to be called out for what they are, and are very truth-phobic, which is why I (and others like me) were bullied, harassed, censored, and banned from BCO. They take their games and talking points straight out of certain partisan playbooks.

Case in point: See D above. It's hardly paranoia to notice distinct patterns and do a bit of link-following and googling.

All paranoids notice "distinct patterns."

Got direct evidence, thenewme? Or just your impressions?

@D

I've mentioned lots of examples here. What evidence are you looking for, exactly?

Asking for evidence? How ironic.

Since you claim most of the "natural girls" are on BCO are selling something, I'm sure you can give direct evidence of thirty who have websites selling products. Otherwise, you would be just be making unfounded claims--something you pretend to despise.

Aren't skeptics supposed to demand evidence? Or are we supposed to take your word for it?

@D
See my post from 1:02.

Orac has asked us not to "out" BCO posters here, so no - I won't name 30 (??) alties and identify their commercial sites, although if someone is interested, they can just look up the examples I gave above. Everything that I know about them is easily found via their own bco posts and simple internet searches. What's your BCO username? I'll tell you what I've found about you if you're interested.

Oh, and they're not limited to the "Natural Girls" thread posters, by the way.

So, you have no direct evidence of anyone selling anything, just words we're supposed to search and then "buy" your suspicions of individual members selling?

Search words are your evidence. Seriously? This is what they call an unfounded conspiracy theory. Suspicions but no evidence--the same thing you claim to be trying to stamp out. Such hypocracy.

As we say around here: Come back when you have some actual evidence to back up your claims.

What part of "Orac has asked us not to out BCO posters here" don't you understand?

I'm not asking you to "buy" my suspicions. Feel free to think for yourself. Really.

This does bring up an interesting question for Orac, though.... Orac-would it be against your rules/preference for us to post a few quack websites for RI readers that may (or may not) belong to BCO posters? Without naming names, of course. I'd love to get some respectful insolent insight and discussion about some of these woosites.

There is a large difference between demanding evidence that an alleged cancer treatment is effective, and demanding evidence that there are people selling bogus cancer treatments on BCO. It took me a couple of minutes to find some posts touting Protocel on BCO, and Protocel is undoubtedly a bogus treatment. Whether those same people are profiting from the sales of those bogus treatments is really a moot point. Someone is profiting from the fear of vulnerable women who are going through a frightening time. That seems despicable to me.

By Krebiozen (not verified) on 20 Jul 2012 #permalink

@Krebiozen, that's very true. Despicable, indeed.

It seems especially despicable when the profiteer joins a forum and pretends to be "just one of us" in an attempt to gain trust and credibility with her marks.

@sweetbean,
What you wrote about your sister made me smile. One of my dearest friends asked me, post-treatment and pre-tamox, "You ARE going to take it - AREN'T YOU?" She wasn't wrong to ask, and in the way she did. She's the best.

@thenewme, I will continue to connect away. Organic fertilizer? Meaning, p**p? I guess that fits.

@thenewme,
I like to think that these people really believe in the stuff they are pushing. The thought that some of them may be cynically marketing something they know is useless and playing with people's lives is simply horrifying, though the end result is the same.

By Krebiozen (not verified) on 20 Jul 2012 #permalink

@Krebiozen,
My parents claim to "really believe" that their chain smoking is harmless to them and others. They're fooling themselves, pretending to believe it.

Same for these alternative cancer treatment peddlers. For the most part, these aren't uneducated, illiterate people. I really hate to have become so cynical, but after spending the past 3-1/2 years at BCO researching for myself, I think *some* of them do it knowingly and willfully. You wouldn't believe the lengths these people will go to promote their crap and justify themselves. Horrifying? Absolutely.

Search Usana and notice the posters name that shows up over and over again. Sickening.

@Jergen, sweetbean, JK and others from BCO:

I have a mission for you guys this weekend. If you were to accept this mission it curtails renting the dvd "The Jonses" and watching it. Afterwards.go through both natural girls threads on the altie forums over two years and see if you can spot who Demi Moore's character is.

When you see what is going on with this one person, it will really disgust you.

By Black-cat (not verified) on 20 Jul 2012 #permalink

@sweetbean,

We exchanged many pms and I always thought you a smart and rational woman but too trusting. I can understand that. When you don't have an agenda and are on the up and up, you think everyone else is like this, also, esp. on a cancer education site.

I really want to address your "what's the harm" commment of women that are beyond treatment. There is a lot of harm. Harm not only to the cancer patient but to the family and friends.

I work long hours on Fri, Sat, and Sun. so I dont have the time nor do I have the energy to go into everything that I want to on BCO. women that have been hurt on the subject of "what's the harm" Although, this is a very important subject and I do want to cover it.

Orac has posted on the harm that burzynski has caused children and their families.

By Black-cat (not verified) on 20 Jul 2012 #permalink

@Krebiozen - I know Mr Woo "believes" all the advice he helpfully shares with anyone he comes in contact with (and with all the time he spends listening to alternative radio and on alternative websites, there's a bunch), but I really struggle to believe, sometimes that the people actually making money hand over fist are all believers? Granted, how would you look yourself in the eye each morning in the mirror if you knew you were a fraud, but sometimes the way they spin things and excite people and wind them up before delivering the final pitch... just seems so suspicious to me. Sometimes I want to scream at Mr Woo: "Don't you realize how much money these people are making by constantly proclaiming this mindset?"

It wouldn't do any good, of course - he sees it as "everyone has to eat," not "people make a big deal over all these conspiracies, etc., and then make millions of dollars and laugh all the way to the bank."

@Sweetbean:

When you ask what's the harm: I want to turn you attention to children that are suffering from cancer that cannot be cured as Colby Curtins:

http://bumpshack.com/2009/06/19/colby-curtin-dies-of-vascular-cancer-af…

Colby was in a coma when the powers that be at pixar finally agreed to release the movie" up "to her so she could view it. Her father held her and narriated the movie to her and the rest of the family watched. Colby died a short time after "UP" ended.

http://bumpshack.com/2009/06/19/colby-curtin-dies-of-vascular-cancer-af…

By Black-cat (not verified) on 20 Jul 2012 #permalink

I am posting something that has come to my attention from a membor of BCO of another member that has been banned:

from Moderators 20 minutes ago

If you are no longer getting the support from the BCO community, or being a respectful, helpful member, then we suggest you find another place that better serves your needs. We are here trying to do our best, provide you a place of comfort, friendship and support and ask nothing of you in return except mutual respect. Truly, if you cannot do that, we don't think that this is the best place for you.

from SunflowersMA 4 minutes ago
and that's because I'm not willling to do the WORK that you PAY staff for- you can see ISP's better than anyone.
PLUS - who is nattygroves, Lisa whatever -
Will circulate your PM to friends on BCO, and see if my comments to you warranted that kind of response.

SO goodbye to you lovely, lovely women - I AM NOT ALLOWED TO POST AS SUNFLOWERS.

By Black-cat (not verified) on 20 Jul 2012 #permalink

You moderators at BCO really really suck

By Black-cat (not verified) on 20 Jul 2012 #permalink

I also want to announce that anybody looking at BCO might want to claim an IRS whistleblowers fee. It's really easy to figure out and your helping others. My best friend is a tax attorney and is interested in representing any of you.

By Black-cat (not verified) on 20 Jul 2012 #permalink

Black-cat:

Even though you're trying to do the right thing, consider this -- replace "IRS whistleblowers" with "CanCell information" and "tax attorney" with "CanCell proselytizer." Sound familiar?

Perhaps it'd be more productive to get contact info for the people in charge of BCO and present your concerns over the moderators to them?

By Scottynuke (not verified) on 21 Jul 2012 #permalink

On the BCO site, there is now a thread entitled "Heart Medicine Alternatives." It contains the sentence that I have copy/pasta-ed at the end of this entry. I wonder what this thing about alternative heart medicine is doing on a BC website, and how people taking heart medicines could possibly be influenced by it? I find this scary. There is also some reference to a website about cholesterol from which this quote is derived or taken.
" The researchers found that as little as two ounces of tomato paste, or a pint of tomato juice a day, could be an ‘effective alternative' to statins.

By bcofollower (not verified) on 21 Jul 2012 #permalink

@Scottynuke:

We have multiple times. The mods have also announced multiple times that the owners are well aware of what's going on in the altie forums. BCO has no phone number to reach administration. Emails will go unanswered.

By Black-cat (not verified) on 21 Jul 2012 #permalink

Make that we have tried multiiple times and have failed to get the site owners attention.

By Black-cat (not verified) on 21 Jul 2012 #permalink

@blackcat. why would the site owners listen to a bunch of raving chemo loving terrorists?

@Leah - why would the site owners of a Woman's Breast Cancer support group listen to a bunch of MLMers trying to sell untested, unproven and downright dangerous "alternatives" to proven conventional Cancer treatments?

Leah,
You don't appear to have noticed that you are in a tiny minority here, and I think I'm safe in saying most of us think you are the one raving.

By Krebiozen (not verified) on 21 Jul 2012 #permalink

On the BCO site, there is now a thread entitled “Heart Medicine Alternatives.” It contains the sentence that I have copy/pasta-ed in hte next paragraph.. I wonder what this thing about alternative heart medicine is doing on a BC website, and how people taking heart medicines could possibly be influenced by it? I find this scary. There is also some reference to a website about cholesterol from which this quote is derived or taken.
” The researchers found that as little as two ounces of tomato paste, or a pint of tomato juice a

day, could be an ‘effective alternative’ to statins.

I guess I can skip my heart meds as long as I eat my french fries with extra catsup. :)

By followerfrombco (not verified) on 21 Jul 2012 #permalink

On the BCO site, there is now a thread entitled “Heart Medicine Alternatives.” It contains the sentence that I have copy/pasta-ed in hte next paragraph.. I wonder what this thing about alternative heart medicine is doing on a BC website, and how people taking heart medicines could possibly be influenced by it? I find this scary. There is also some reference to a website about cholesterol from which this quote is derived or taken.
” The researchers found that as little as two ounces of tomato paste, or a pint of tomato juice a

day, could be an ‘effective alternative’ to statins.

I guess I can skip my heart meds as long as I eat my french fries with extra catsup. :)

By followerfrombco (not verified) on 21 Jul 2012 #permalink

@lawrence no one is trying sell anything on BCO. Spam gets deleted immediately. blackcat is a drama queen who hates the fact that many of the women who frequent the alternative forum have refused chemo, radiation.Tamoxifen etc. and are doing just fine using non-toxic alternatives.

Anyone can see that conventional cancer treatments are medieval. People don't want to die from chemo. Hang out in the Stage 4 forum. It's heartbreaking. These women know that chemo and the rest of the meds they feel forced to take will kill them in the end. The owners of BCO's site know this too , which is why despite blackcat's whining, they allow the alternative forum to stay up. Whether blackcat likes it or not, it's going to get more and more popular. All the Moderators have to do is keep banning her and the rest of the terrorists. It's about time they put their foot down. Better late than never, I suppose.

@leah - I find it very sad, in today's age where real Cancer treatments are getting better every day, where women have real alternatives to invasive and body-altering surgeries, where Cancer researchers are providing better outcomes, there are people like you that are pushing women into "no-evidence" alternative medicine that will do nothing but offer false hope and horrible outcomes.

Sure, you might find a very few, very lucky women who roll the dice and not roll snake-eyes, at least initially, but when you push sham treatments like "Black Salve" that does nothing but burn away large sections of a woman's skin, yet have the gall to call Chemo "medieval" you are among the lowest of the low.

You are not empowering women, you are purposely misleading them - lying to them that there is any evidence at all that these "natural" treatments do a damn thing.

If there was a hell, there would be a special place for people like you.....

It is so strange Leah. Speaking anecdotally, of course, I know several people whose lives have been extended with chemo. One who was diagnosed with stage IV cancer lived for two years after his diagnosis - the cancer was too aggressive to get rid of, but they managed to keep it in check long enough to give him plenty of time to make his peace and keep him comfortable enough to do so. My MIL is a cancer survivor, as are my aunt and two uncles.

None of them died of chemo. Some (i.e., MIL, and friend who died of his cancer) did have advanced stages of cancer when it was discovered.

People with stage IV disease are already on the harder road and know it. Still, many will get through it, and those that don't often have a much better quality of life than they would if they chose no treatment whatsoever.

Give me a break Leah. I belong on the Stage IV forums because of diagnosis. I am not heart breaking. I am not desperately seeking woo. I have had great success with EBM and plan to stay with it. I do count on some of the Alternative posts for information, connection with an INTERESTING group of women but I am not going to lose my mind (unless it happens with brain mets-which I Don't have) and believe in magic or unicorns.

By Kay Hanson (not verified) on 21 Jul 2012 #permalink

"@blackcat. why would the site owners listen to a bunch of raving chemo loving terrorists"

Leah: Are you still fantasizing about killing people, or have you gotten over that?

I am sick of morons like Leah proclaiming that anyone that is Stage IV is dying from their treatment. You dumb B. I'll try to watch my language but this really pisses me off. Without the protocol I have chosen I would likely be dead by now.

Seems to me Leah that you early stage alti's are the ones who are frustrated that we Stage IV's aren't dying from our treatment as much or as fast as you want us to. My treatment is working, my scans are good. I will enjoy every day I have been allotted on this earth and I won't drink altered fruit juice or smear my body with caustic substances because some guru convinced me to alter my chakras or stop my anti clockwise cancer cells from spinning because he called on the goddess of bull crap. You probably loved Ms "Active Surveillance" or maybe she is you.

The only way your alti gods can sell the useless crap they do is if you trot out sickening statements like you just did. You are a disgusting piece of humanity. And so is every other piece of vile trash that prey on cancer patients so they can buy a yacht or build a mega mansion in Houston, or just shill for the bastards.

There, I feel better.

Please note that Leah has now admitted that she practices a double standard and expects others to give "respect" she herself won't give.

Sorry, Leah, but unlike you (remember your announcement on July 8 that "You won't here [sic] from me again"?) we actually put thought into our conversations and try to mean what we say. You clearly prefer being able to say whatever's convenient a given moment and forget it as soon as it becomes inconvenient, but we don't play that game here.

By Antaeus Feldspar (not verified) on 21 Jul 2012 #permalink

Most of you obviously lack emotional intelligence because you feel you have no control over your health, and you hate those who do. That's another side effect of chemotherapy, BTW. I feel really sorry for you people. Maybe you all should try therapy instead of using RI as your support group. It's important to address the real cause of your anger and get those demons out.

It’s important to address the real cause of your anger and get those demons out.

The mirror department just rang. Bring all the Shop-Vacs.

It's nice that the hypocrite who wrote "If it were up to me, oncologists who deliberately over treat patients would receive the death penalty. A lethal injection of chemo is punishment that would certainly go well with the crime" is worried about other people's anger issues.

It’s nice that the hypocrite who wrote “If it were up to me, oncologists who deliberately over treat patients would receive the death penalty. A lethal injection of chemo is punishment that would certainly go well with the crime” is worried about other people’s anger issues.

It’s nice that the hypocrite who wrote “If it were up to me, oncologists who deliberately over treat patients would receive the death penalty. A lethal injection of chemo is punishment that would certainly go well with the crime” is worried about other people’s anger issues.

PS. Orac I had a glitch that may result in a triple post. Please delete the duplicates & sorry about that

@Leah - I'm sorry - but how does "emotional intelligence" or lack thereof relate to making choices regarding our healthcare?

How is choosing evidence based medicine not a "choice?"

"Feeling you have no control over your health" is a side effect of chemotherapy? Do you have a journal to cite for that? I would think that being in a severe health crisis and working through it would make you feel a bit out of control until you began making decisions, at which point some feeling of control would come back. Being with my MIL and a good friend through their cancer journeys I never saw much despair regarding their lack of choices. They measured all the possibilities, sometimes go second opinions if they believed they were warranted, and moved forward the best way they found. How is that "helpless?"

We need therapy for "demons?" Are you sure you don't mean an exorcism? Or maybe just some sage rubbing and energy work?

**sage smudging sorry about that - fighting a headache and a sick day....

Redloh - you are right - most of the alties are early stage and I'm sure their "Alternative" treatment doesn't really do anything. The ones there who are Stage IV because they did not do conventional treatment earlier are the ones I feel sorry for.

@leah

How's it going, hypocrite? Still spewing out the stupid as usual?

Please, keep going, I like seeing you make an utter fool of yourself.

@Afriend. Bingo! All alties are early stagers who think chemo kills but yet have NEVER been offered chemo.

@leah. Your a pathetic moron. Go mix some baking soda and maple syrup. Maybe it will cure your lousy attitude. It certainly won't cure cancer!

Nd by the way, the unfortunate ladies on the stage IV forum who die, die from BC not chemo.

@jergen

My sister was one of the unfortunate ones who did not catch her tumor early; she was Stage IV when diagnosed.

Chemo worked for her, until she switched to tamoxifen and something else (I can't remember what it was atm) pills to give her body a 'rest' from conventional chemo. Without the conventional chemo her tumors, which had been reduced to less than 0.5 cm, came roaring back to nearly 4 cm+. We lost her later that year after she could no longer receive chemo due to a low platelet count.

Blackcat, I totally agree with your assessment of me - I am too trusting on BCO, I think. I kind of made the decision to take people at face value, because otherwise I will go nuts. I'm definitely going to get that movie and watch it.

When I was diagnosed, a chiropractor I knew pressured me HEAVILY to not do any conv treatment and go to Mexico for the Gerson Therapy. He told me that I would die an early death from chemo, be mutilated from surgery, have lung damage from radiation, etc. On and on. I felt doomed. And the idea of my body healing itself was SO attractive. I considered alternative treatment for about 18 hours. I called my sister and asked her to help me look up information on Gerson. Later, she told me that was the only time she felt despair, but she didn't let on at the time. Instead, she treated me with great respect and proceeded to research the Gerson Therapy very thoroughly. The next day, she told me the results, which were (obviously) not favorable, so I chose conventional treatments.

What made the difference for me was how my sister treated me and I try to remember that on BCO when someone asks about going purely alternative. I remember how scared I was and how great natural healing sounded. And I remember how my sister supported me by helping me research and presenting information calmly, rather than flipping out at me, which is really what she wanted to do.

All this is to say that I am sure that there are times when I may seem more supportive about alt choices than I actually am. It's just that I am trying to treat people with the same respect with which my sister treated me. I'm pretty upfront about the fact that I support alt treatments in an integrative protocol, but not on their own. I've also had some friends that had surgery and then went purely alternative and are fine. I've also seen some miracles with alternatives and Stage IV clients. But I definitely haven't seen enough "only alt" success stories to tell people to ditch their conventional treatments.

*sigh* I just want everyone to be OK. This disease sucks.

By sweetbean (not verified) on 21 Jul 2012 #permalink

@Afriend, 630 thousand people die every year of cancer in the US. These aren't "alties", sweetie. Only you people believe that chemo," the cutting edge of orthodox treatment" , nourishes every cell in the body and is helping to win the socalled war on cancer. (LOL)

Project much, Leah? I'm not aware that anyone here believes chemo nourishes anything. That's not how it works.

Oh, sorry. That's right --- you don't understand how medicine works.

I'll have to tell my middle-aged, computer-geek, hockey-playing father of two younger brother that all that chemo when he was a kid is going to kill him. I just wonder why it's taking so long.

@Leah - and without treatment, how many more people would die?

Go ahead & keep on believing that your "magic substance" is the end-all-be-all, without any evidence at all that it works.

Again, a special place in hell for you dear.....

Another ultimatum question for you, Leah.

@Afriend, 630 thousand people die every year of cancer in the US. These aren’t “alties”, sweetie. Only you people believe that chemo,” the cutting edge of orthodox treatment” , nourishes every cell in the body and is helping to win the socalled war on cancer. (LOL)

When did anyone ever recommend chemotherapy by claiming it "nourishes every cell in the body"?

Standard rules: if you do not answer within three comments, it will be taken as an affirmative admission that you invented the claim yourself, because Protocel can only look good in comparison to imaginary alternatives.

By Antaeus Feldspar (not verified) on 21 Jul 2012 #permalink

@Leah - do you really believe what you say? Really?

I'm just curious, because if someone else's life was on the line I would really struggle to assure them that I had something that offered them a 100% cure rate just on the off chance they might have something that didn't respond.

It seems a lot more honest (even if some don't find it as comforting) to have someone say, "When we did our best to analyze this as neutrally as possible, we had 40% of people do this well with it, 20% do this well with it, 15% do this well with it, and 25% have no change or get worse."

Than say, "I have these 35 anecdotes that had absolutely no unbiased review or following and they all say it cures a whole bunch of things, so I know it will cure you."

That just seems unrealistic when you look at the way the world works.

Granted, this might be my "own" thing - as an eight-year-old girl (at that age you're still pretty sure there might even be a Santa Claus) I prayed with all my heart that my mommy would get better and come home from the hospital so she could make me fresh cookies and homemade pizza again.

To this day I still remember the scent of her shampoo. She died of lymphoma at the age of 29.

You're assured if you pray and believe and have the faith of a mustard seed you'd move a mountain. Surely a little girl's prayer, if prayer worked 100% of the time, would have saved her mother's life, wouldn't you think?

And I think I'd believe in some sort of divine being, even now, more than I would believe in an untested bottled liquid by someone that can cure anything...

My online and local nickname is Essa. I am mentioned above so I was told I might want to check this out.

I have been a green entrepreneur for two decades, a writer four decades. I do not hide who I am.

Two and a half years ago I became very ill and lost my memory to the point I could not recall my sister's number for more than ten seconds, had known it for 20 years. But I kept working via my online businesses, a place to make it through, be useful. One year ago I realized I had breast cancer, a few months later it was in my lymph nodes. If I did not have the memory issues I would have known earlier, but every time I found the mass during self-exams, spring and into summer I believe, I forgot it was there. Now it is all vague to me. But I remember more since I have been using alternative treatments more specific for the immune and cancer than for the memory issues.

I am a real person, no agenda except to deal with this health challenge the best way I have always known, through the power of nature.

I did not go to BCO to find answers on conventional treatments. I went to find support after surgery, not even knowing I would find other alternative thinkers and those questioning what to do. I have learned so much about breast cancer, lymph node involvement, diagnosis, testing, drugs, chemo, radiation, surgery, lymphedema, humor, alternative choices, complementary choices.

My sister said to me years ago, concerning my beliefs, you better hope you never get cancer. That haunted me, and I did hope. Honestly, I was also concerned about my career choices, should I get cancer. Pride and all.

But it is here, face-to-face with cancer. A spiritual and physical and emotional journey. We are all on it. We all choose different paths along it.

I spent most of the last twenty years eating organic foods, using herbal deodorant, using products that were not going to tax my system, drinking RO water with my own minerals added, doing detoxes for liver, heart health, you name it, I tried to live more purely than the world today gives us a chance to do. Nothing is perfectly organic in the real world and I was in it. Still, I live what I believe and offer it genuinely.

On BCO, I am quoting myself here the best I can remember, that if someone needs something that I offer to sell, I will help them find someone to order from who is not going to bring a commission or sale to me. And I do. As it should be. We are there to be sisters and brothers, I would not sell to my family to gain, I would not do so on BCO.

As quoted above, from a bco person.....
""When you don’t have an agenda and are on the up and up, you think everyone else is like this, also, esp. on a cancer education site.""

That's me, I am shocked if there are more than a few who sell to gain from BCO, shocked. I am not one of them.

BCO asks for our web site in the profile, I provided it to a blog that makes me happy, where people can read stories and smile. If they go deeper, fine, but it is not that I am sending them to the organic fertilizer I sell or anything else..... someone from BCO mentioned my life's work way up above. I would never NEVER never EVER have brought it up to you otherwise.

On BCO, if I bring up anything, it is because I am sharing my life, my work like anyone else who is an accountant, a nurse, a beautician. I share my family and pet stories, my fears, my terrors and my spiritual search on BCO.

About this uncalled for attack on breast cancer people who are hoping to live more than the allotted five-years..... meaning the 'cure' that conventional oncologists are allowed to declare if we follow chemo and rads. Do you realize that so many in alts have already done the conventional, are ill, have re-occurrence. They are women and men hoping to find a way to further their time in this life and in a good way, with quality of life improved.

I want more, I hope for more. How dare any one of you tear down my hope, how dare you? I am not tearing down your hope, I am allowing you to believe and pursue what you need while I would hold my arm around your shoulder as you need, it is your choice.

No, am not saying no to chemo or radiation. It is just not for me now. I am an adult who always knew this is my decision, no one needed to convince me.

I am trying to live. Sometimes that ideal is difficult to believe in for me, I have hard days, bad dreams, fears. But i also have great days and really want to stay on earth longer.

Compassion would be embraced. I do not feel it here.

MODERATORS HERE::::
The alternative people who have been outed on this thread are still named, and still more being named when the moderator and owner of this blog gave their word that these names and especially their experiences that are personal --- and are only to be shared by the person they belong to --- would be removed.

Well, I have read, I have shared and I am leaving. Say what you like. I do not need the drama or hurt it could bring if I spent more time on this. Part of my protocol is to chill more often, write happy stories more often, sing more often and listen to the birds at sunrise. Alternative? Conventional? Wouldn't hurt any of us really.

I hope the best for all of you.

Diane (Essa) Adams

By essaadams (not verified) on 21 Jul 2012 #permalink

The following comment from cancer surgeon Michael Baum on a UK medical professional site is rather horrible, but contains an important message.

In the UK, there is the "cancer act" to protect patients from the claims of CAM in treating cancer, sadly this is seldom enforced. As a cancer surgeon and professor of medical humanities I can attest to the tragic consequences of patients with breast cancer refusing modern humane treatment in place of barbaric alternatives. I call them barbaric as it allowed me to follow the natural history of untreated disease. Although I rarely endorse the use of mastectomy, if there is one thing more barbaric than radical surgery, it's the disease itself being allowed to run riot. The cancer leaves behind a rotting stinking ulcer and a swollen arm as the involved lymph nodes block the drainage from the lymphatics.

By Krebiozen (not verified) on 22 Jul 2012 #permalink

@Essaadams,
Do you or do you not sell treatments, supplements, herbs, and other breast cancer "treatments?" Are you or are you not a multi-level marketer (MLM) who sells anti-aging and "breast health" supplements, immune system enhancers, and BHRT (bioidentical hormone therapy) in relation to breast cancer?

As a MLM'er, do you have financial motivation to sell your products and recruit others to sell for you?

Selling fiction books and skunks is one thing, and I wish you all the best with those. Selling bogus medical treatments to cancer patients is a whole 'nother ballgame.

Oh, and you can't really advertise your websites all over the internet, including BCO, and then feign offense when we discuss it here. YOU put it out there.

This has *nothing* to do with tearing down your hope. I have hope too! I'm a breast cancer patient too, hoping for more than 5 years survival. Give me a break!

DianeEssa - your BCO posts state you had an excisional biopsy with positive margins - why did you never have a proper lumpectomy to clear up the margins. Seems like your alternative protocol isn't working is it? With positive nodes, with extra surgery and chemo, you might be ok by now. Now you are relying on Protocel to help you - good luck with that.

@Diane/Essa: There is only 1 moderator here - Orac. No one else touches posts or comments. And No one else was outed after he asked them not to out BCO people. If people are listed by their BCO names, then that is not "outing" them. Very few posts are moderated here...though Orac won't put up with sock puppets or MLM'ers....

Diane Essa - if your not trying to sell anything to BCO members, why don't you delete your website address? That would be the ethical thing to do, don't ya think?

I'd be more concerned about the medical announcements BCO makes. The usually manipulate the facts to suit their corporate sponsors' interest.

Who cares if Diane sells organic fertilizer? Her site's address is buried in her bio. If you have a problem with that, contact BCO, they are the ones who allow members to include their websites' addresses. That would be the logical thing to do, don't you think?

@Leah - conspiracy theories again. Please.

DianeEssa's website address is hardly "buried". One click on her name and poof! There it is. And, she selling a whole lot more than fertilizer. Thanks for the tip on telling BCO about her MLM businesses. I will do that.

BCO also plays the poor card and solicits "donations" from its members when, as blackcat pointed out, this "non profit" is extremely profitable. That's just wrong !

I'm not sure what Dr. Weiss does, but I'm sure it isn't worth $200K+, which is what she's paid. That money could be better spend to hire at least 2 NDs and 2 MDs to actively participate on the board and help answer members' serious questions.

@Leah. Isn't that called switch and bait? Mmmm I think so, but there might be another name for your response.

By Kay Hanson (not verified) on 23 Jul 2012 #permalink

Am I missing something? I just clicked on Essa's website and was brought to her blog. I don't see any products. Honestly, even if I did, I don't think I would care. A lot of people have home-based, internet businesses that are MLM. My friend sells adorable stuff from a company called Thirty-one. Another one is big into Young Living. Not my thing, but lots of people do really well with it.

I think the problem is when people say that their product will cure your cancer. That's dangerous. And pushing your product in posts is uncool. But just posting your website on your profile where it says "website?" That seems kosher to me.

By sweetbean (not verified) on 23 Jul 2012 #permalink

@sweatbean - MLMs don't work, don't help people succeed & are certainly not a place to be purchasing health products. You should check out the MLMSurvivors website, if you don't believe me.

@sweetbean,
That's the thing. I have no problem at all with people making money with home-based internet businesses, even MLM businesses. My issue is with people who sell or promote unproven/disproven *medical* products, treatments, and information, especially when they're sold with false claims and implications related to cancer treatment, cure, prevention. It's all about honesty and integrity.

@Diane Essa - Do you sell/promote bioidentical hormone products or other products under the premise that they help prevent or treat cancer?

I don't care how "buried" a website link is on BCO. The fact is if you're a danger to real cancer patients like me, I have a problem with you (general "you").

@followerfrombco (July 21, 4:41 pm)
Yikes!! I saw that! Let me get this straight: a woman with multiple medical problems including breast cancer has a terrible time with herceptin, resulting in "heart damage." Her cardiologist prescribes Carvedilol and Lisinopril. Afraid of the meds, she goes to BCO asking (insisting?) if she can just eat tomato paste and cayenne pepper, exercise, and de-stress her life instead.

Some of the responses are reasonable, but some of them are just downright scary, both for the original poster and for anyone else who happens across this medical "advice" to ignore the cardiologist and "just eat cayenne pepper and get yourself a blood pressure cuff and monitor yourself..."

O.M.G.

I am starting to think that it might be worth closing this thread and opening another which does not have direct contact with BCO. I think that this might be encouraging THEM. Just sayin'.

@thenewme Yes. Apparently you can build up your heart muscle by meditatiing with a blood pressure cuff. Or something like that.
I feel bad for that woman, because she's so scared of side effects that she's willing to risk permanent heart damage, rather than listen to her doctor. It's frightening that they allow this to go on without a huge disclaimer...

@Lawrence, I don't know - my friend who has the Thirtyone business does pretty well. It's just a side thing for her and the products are super cute. I think YoungLiving is overpriced, but I like their deodorant - their natural stuff is the best I've found. Like I said, I'm not particularly a fan of MLM's, but I've definitely seen people do well with them without imposing on others.

As for the heart medicine post, at least in the beginning, everyone was encouraging her to take the meds. If there are dietary or CAM strategies that can help, that's great, but I certainly wouldn't advise her to not take the medications.

By sweetbean (not verified) on 23 Jul 2012 #permalink

How she would even contemplate not taking the heart medicine is unbelievable. Now this is a woman of limited intelligence who does not like to take any drugs BUT she let her surgeon give her a shot of Botox in the surgery area. Botox can cause heart problems BTW.

Heart medicine of all things! I can't believe that she is putting down the heart meds and opting for cayenne pepper instead. Just when I think I've heard it all.

Herceptin caused her heart problems,so she's afraid of the side effects from the heart medications. This is exactly how people die from standard treatments--the red pill is for the side effects of blue pill, the blue is for the side effects of the white pills and it just keeps going on and on.

@leah - so I guess you would prefer that she has a heart attack?

@Jergen, because of her age (55+) , I'd prefer she not take Herceptin. There are other options that won't cause women her age to drop dead of a heart attack. She can also see ND to help prevent side effects, but she seems to want to treat herself. That I don't agree with.

I would not bring this up but accusations have been made about me. Then the treatments I have chosen for breast and lymph node cancer has been misrepresented too.... thus my name, reputation, business and peace of mind are of issue. So please allow.

thenewme -
-----I do not sell breast cancer treatments, never have. -----Supplements, herbs, ionic minerals for general health, yes, but not products for cancer.
-----I do not sell immune system enhancers but I do mention some I have used and will always share what I experience.
----- You ask, and I present info and offers for cosmetics, skincare, hair care, all to help with mature skin and menopause issues, thus the anti-aging keywords on my site. Fertilizer, auto products, household, you ran the list above.
-----Yes, these are through companies that offer mlm. I do not have anyone under me that I even know of, I just sell products I love and receive commission. I like to keep it simple and I am in reality about profiting through mlm.

Perhaps you are confused because I wrote a novel where the husband was dealing with prostate cancer? But never mentioned that on bco, ever.

Or because at one point when I used bioidentical progesterone cream, I offered it for awhile but not on bco and not at all for over a year, unless I missed something I wanted to pull offline. But never did I offer this for cancer or to avoid cancer. Frankly, I did not know enough about hormones to save my own arse and am still learning the basics. When I know more I will share what I know to help others.

thenewme ---
I also do not sell pet skunks. Never have, never will. I rescue them. That is the fun title to the blog about my pets that I would never sell.

The suggestion that I am doing these things reveals the research you give little time to when checking into someone's life and business. Your accusation started without enough knowledge. Then you continued with a knee-jerk reaction to escalate what could have been done the last time I posted. Be more careful, please, because you are toying with my life here.

I understand how on quick glance you could draw these conclusions. Online I am a medium profile person, when doing a google search for essa adams cancer I drilled into almost 30 pgs and found info about me, comments, essays, Amazon lists on cancer books others wrote. Have been in business a long long time and now I am dealing with cancer so it is part of my life.

About our hope, it's all good. I embrace yours, and I would not tear you down your treatment choices. Again, I hope all the best for you.

Diane (Essa) Adams

thenewme had written ---
"""""@Essaadams,
Do you or do you not sell treatments, supplements, herbs, and other breast cancer “treatments?” Are you or are you not a multi-level marketer (MLM) who sells anti-aging and “breast health” supplements, immune system enhancers, and BHRT (bioidentical hormone therapy) in relation to breast cancer?

As a MLM’er, do you have financial motivation to sell your products and recruit others to sell for you?

Selling fiction books and skunks is one thing, and I wish you all the best with those. Selling bogus medical treatments to cancer patients is a whole ‘nother ballgame.

Oh, and you can’t really advertise your websites all over the internet, including BCO, and then feign offense when we discuss it here. YOU put it out there.

This has *nothing* to do with tearing down your hope. I have hope too! I’m a breast cancer patient too, hoping for more than 5 years survival. Give me a break!

My issue is with people who sell or promote unproven/disproven *medical* products, treatments, and information, especially when they’re sold with false claims and implications related to cancer treatment, cure, prevention. It’s all about honesty and integrity.

@Diane Essa – Do you sell/promote bioidentical hormone products or other products under the premise that they help prevent or treat cancer?

I don’t care how “buried” a website link is on BCO. The fact is if you’re a danger to real cancer patients like me, I have a problem with you (general “you”)."""""

_______________________________

AFriend wrote----
""""DianeEssa – your BCO posts state you had an excisional biopsy with positive margins – why did you never have a proper lumpectomy to clear up the margins. Seems like your alternative protocol isn’t working is it? With positive nodes, with extra surgery and chemo, you might be ok by now. Now you are relying on Protocel to help you – good luck with that."""""

To which I answer..... the surgery was considered excisional because I did not have a biopsy prior, we could tell by mammo and US that it was cancer, I wanted it out.......... so the surgeon removed 25% of my right breast and into the side, also 11 lymph nodes. The positive margin was revealed to me 6 weeks after surgery, he had said it was 'close' and then I saw the path report, positive. The nodes that are cancer now were found in recent tests and were there from previous surgery, we believe. Bottomline, my well respected surgeon did not know I was multifocal and was not prepared with enough tests prior. My heartbreak. My treatment is my choice, no defenses there. But I can say you are mistaken to think I am taking Protocel though my integrative MD/pathologist suggested it due to the results worldwide. My protocol does not include that or any derivative, I may someday, but not banking on it today.
_____________________

About my website listed on BCO. When I joined and noticed the website spot, I thought, well I love to tell stories so will share those. Ethical. Yes, I am ethical, I was honest upfront and even stated I would not sell to others and I do not, I help them find without earning. So no, I only removed the essanatural blog link from my womens-fiction blog. If bco asks me to remove the web link, I will without shame. The fact is, I would be called out on mentioning anything I know about by someone who does not believe me anyway, so I don't hide who I am.
_________

Now, unless there are more grand accusations and questions that I must answer or go stir crazy in obsession, I will leave the thread. Thank you for allowing me to address these issues brought up about me. And thank you for a great read on Science Blogs, enjoyed other threads here as well.

Diane (Essa) Adams

By essaadams (not verified) on 23 Jul 2012 #permalink

@essaadams:

Actually, I don't know too much about you because your posts were too far out there for me. A quick google search brings this up:

http://www.skillwho.com/users/holistic-guide/mi/saugatuck/essa-adams/99…

Category: Health / Fitness

Description
I am a holistic consultant. Free email consultations answering questions and concerns.

I guide in changes which are relevant to the spiritual, emotional and physical challenges. Products and various complementary therapies are suggested that pertain to personal challenges. A nonjudgmental, objective advocate for building a holistic lifestyle which I call synergistic-living.

Relevant Education / Credentials
Intuitive healer with nearly two decades of self-study in holistic health and research of products and modalities. I prefer the noninvasive, most gentle and organic choices for myself and my family so I know how to find what you need.

Years Experience: 16

Flower Essence Practitioner

Category: Health / Fitness

Description
Spiritual healing through flower essences is like self healing with an old and wise friend supporting your progress. Flower remedies are created with water, sun, blossoms to capture the electrical charge of the flowers. Their essence is shared with you when you spray your space. Clients work with me for soul therapy, soul healing, past life therapy, grief healing, transitions in crossing over, emotional support, dream work and life challenges. I also work with your pets. I love to match flower essences to clients and watch them blossom.

Relevant Education / Credentials
Certified through American College of Healthcare Sciences. Individualized studies of select flower essence projects in North America and Australia. Intuitive healer.

Years Experience: 16

View Skill Media

Bowen Therapist

Category: Health / Fitness

Description
Bowen therapeutic technique is a dynamic muscle and connective tissue therapy. Gentle moves on soft tissue stimulates body energy flows and empowers your body to self heal, release toxins, as well as release on a cellular level.

This is not massage, not chiropractic, not acupressure, not directional energy work, not physiotherapy, not trigger-point therapy, not fascia release, not lymphatic release, not emotional release modality. Bowen therapy is holistic.

My theory is that if Bowen therapy can be done with a feather and intention then it would be effective as a distance healing modality as well. I would like to work with clients from a distance with the feather-intention form of Bowen therapy and share your results and experience. Please contact me for details. If you need a Bowen therapist in your area, please search online.

Relevant Education / Credentials
Certified Bowen therapist, National Bowen Therapy Training, Ohio.

Years Experience: 2

If it walks like a quack, quacks like a quack.......

By Black-cat (not verified) on 23 Jul 2012 #permalink

Essaadams,

This is your bio on another website:

Dream Intuitive Guide. Flower essence therapist, 'Emotional Freedom Technique' EFT guide. Bowen therapist. Holistic guide. ESSA Books publisher, editor. Author alias Thayne Hudson. Novel written, A Breath Floats By: An Illusion for the Soul. About a woman whose life purpose involves dreamwork. All my work pertains to the miracles and matrix of life, and supports the more and more widely embraced theory that we are created to respond to vibrational techniques and we can believe in miracles because they are so.

Looks like you are quite the little scam artist to me.

By Black-cat (not verified) on 23 Jul 2012 #permalink

I quite like Bowen Therapy, but the miracle bit is totally loony.

And Leah has now admitted by default that she completely made up the claim that chemo is supposed to "nourish every cell in the body" because Protocel can only look good when it's compared to invented straw men.

By Antaeus Feldspar (not verified) on 24 Jul 2012 #permalink

@Essaadams,
You post a lot on BCO about your breast cancer self "treatment" with lots of alternative methods and products (supplements, herbs, creams, etc.). You often use science-y terminology and references to pubmed, and post pseudoscientific articles that appear to support your choices.

Is it fair to assume that these are the same products you sell at your site?

@thenewme, is it fair to assume that you use no alternative treatments and you're just passively waiting for chemo to fail you?

@Leah - are you always this offensive and condescending, or do you only treat fellow patients that way?

Chemo hasn't failed me. As a matter of fact, it was a stunning success!

are you always this offensive and condescending, or do you only treat fellow patients that way?

Seems like generalized predation. While I haven't remarked on it before, as my temper here is short, I've spent a fair amount of time steering my mother away from miscellaneous alt-swinishness in this regard.

@Narad,
When you mention "generalized predation," I hope my posts don't fall under that assessment. In case you've misunderstood my position, that isn't my intent at all!

@Jergen - glad to hear it! It was equally successful for my aunt and my mother-in-law, and, to most of our reckoning, the two years it gave a good friend of mine after his diagnosis (without treatment he had probably less than two months) were a definite gift and we were grateful for them. Nothing is more frustrating than alt-med's constant insinuation that those who die would still be here "if only" they had followed the Budwig protocol, the all alkaline only diet, etc. etc...

@Narad - I have a shorter temper for PH, I think - can't stand him in large chunks, but I get tired of seeing the sniping at patients choosing evidence-based treatment. Maybe alt-med advocates do so because they feel sniped at for choosing unproven therapies, but I really think it lies more in how unproven therapies are usually presented in the first place - using fear and manipulation rather than studies and neutral information to explain the options to the patient.

Chemotherapy is not a cure for cancer and it does not extend life. It is the most toxic substances ever deliberately put into the human body. It only increases the toxic load in the cells, which causes the cells to produce even more resistant cancer stem cells, and sorry chemotherapy does not kill cancer stem cells. I'm surprised you people don't know this.

"It only increases the toxic load in the cells, which causes the cells to produce even more resistant cancer stem cells"

Leah, can you explain, in your own words, how this process occurs? You speak with such authority that clearly you must have a deep understanding of this mechanism.

@leah - So if chemo kills, what should I have done instead? Tell me the alt cure for BC. ..I'm "dying" to hear it.

@MrsWoo - glad that your family is doing well and glad that your friend had the extra time.

@Leah - then explain the results I have seen with family and friends - did they just "get lucky?"

What treatment do you recommend since you are so much more knowledgeable, by what mechanism does it work, and provide the studies that demonstrate its efficacy, please.

Thank you.

Chemotherapy is not a cure for cancer and it does not extend life. It is the most toxic substances ever deliberately put into the human body. It only increases the toxic load in the cells, which causes the cells to produce even more resistant cancer stem cells, and sorry chemotherapy does not kill cancer stem cells. I’m surprised you people don’t know this.

And why should we believe any of it, coming from someone who has admitted to making up the straw man "chemo nourishes every cell in the body" because Protocel can only look good next to imaginary alternatives?

By Antaeus Feldspar (not verified) on 25 Jul 2012 #permalink

"Chemotherapy is not a cure for cancer and it does not extend life."

I guess my youngest brother is a zombie, then.

@Shay, LOL - maybe I'm a zombie too!

I'm not sure whether it was the "allopathic" slash, burn, or poison (or all of the above) that saved my life, but I sure am grateful to be here!

I shudder to think where I'd be if I had relied on Protocel instead.

I was told that things were grim for me, stage IV breast cancer, mets to liver. Then there was chemo and herceptin. NED for 3 years and counting on many more. Chemo and herceptin extended my life. Unless I'm a member of the living dead too!

Kay, I am happy that you are NED!

Another dimension that I see from the alties is that they seem to believe that the physicians who care for BC patients (probably all patients) LIKE to do the "poison/slash/burn" thing to us. Honestly, I think they're projecting their own sadism, or perhaps they've seen too many old-time B-grade horror movies. They write as though every MD is a reincarnation of Mengele.

Or maybe they are just really stupid people.

I totally agree with the "stupid people" reference. Very stupid!!!

@Narad,
When you mention “generalized predation,” I hope my posts don’t fall under that assessment.

No, I was referring solely to the stirring rhetorical stylings of Leah.

a reincarnation of Mengele

When your crap doesn't work...and you know it... you really have no other choice than to court customers by demonizing your competition.

Well I am sure I am not a zombie.

BLOG OWNER --- will you consider writing on 714X, antineoplastons, or Warburg’s anerobic function in cancer cells. I learned quite bit from this article on Protocel, gave me reason to question more. I would read on the above, as I prefer to know both sides on all options. Thanks.

thenewme --- First of all, my self treatment is not just me making the decisions. I am under care of a general practitioner, an oncologist, a holistic chiropractor and an integrative medical doctor/pathologist.

No, the products I sell are not the ones I speak of for my own protocol. In fact, last week I sold my washer and dryer and ordered welllllllll over $1000.00 in alternative treatments, detox and immune system supplements at retail, no money back to me. Protocel was not included. I do not sell the products I ordered to help my cancer situation. Now Protandim, I am a ‘rep’ for the product, but only so I get the better price for myself, I do not sell it…. yet. And I would not on BCO, I would send requests elsewhere, as I have already.

Maybe if I get out of this cancer experience alive or generate a great QOL for years, I will sell all I know about from a special website. An alternative co-op and alternative insurance company would be a beautiful thing. I can dream.
________________

black-cat ------ the promotional piece was highly uncalled for. You are attempting to destroy me or something? You cannot. I am real. My beliefs may be different than yours, that’s all right. There is a whole world out there that you don’t understand. I embrace that world to an extent. The problem is you do not know my heart, you think I scam but I only wanted to help others.

But thank you for pointing out a few bios that I have been attempting to remember with my disabled brain for over a year, both how to find them and get in to change them and then to even do it.

Bowen therapy, flower essences, EFT, these are now only with family, friends, pets and animals. I never did much with them, I am a curious believer. Still, on BCO you have scoffed at homeopathy as woo, though this vibrational therapy has been used the world over by hundreds of thousands of medical physicians and practioners. Bowen therapy, flower essences and tapping are vibrational choices upcoming in popularity. It’s a new world.

Intuitive healer, I am embarrassed to read that I wrote that at a time I was getting very ill, confused, no excuse though ……. that was a poor choice of words which I regret and have now changed. I am not a healer, neither prayer, miracles, intuitive or hands on, not at all. The trouble for me is I just know things about people and about their dreams that I don’t try to know, don’t want to know. It has proven useful for those who have been very ill. I don’t do that unless asked, I do not charge, though at one time I tried, but just cannot accept money. The beautiful dreams I have been told, amazing dreams. I regret many things and I regret nothing. It is what it is. Now to find the good.
______________

AFriend ----- Miracles…. those little surprises that show us we are connected to whatever we believe, sometimes they are the big occurrences. I believe in miracles, I love movies about miracles. It’s A Wonderful Life. Matrix. Scifi is full of miracles, if you like that. Then there''s August Rush. Pay It Forward. Alabama’s song, Angels Among Us.

PROTOCEL
Protocel for one. Protocel is a formula originated from a scientist’s belief and prayer that he could be useful to the world in a huge way. Granted, the man who took over for Sheridan, I don't know about .... I just don’t understand him right now, but the original formula for Protocel is still there for others if they choose carefully. It can work for some, not all.
_________________

Let me be clear, like most alts people, I don’t believe any of the alternative or conventional treatments are a cure.

As with Protocel, I believe the treatments need to be explored on an individual basis, never ever give up. We cannot rest on our treatment laurels.

I don’t believe in stopping what we do for ourselves because we have an NED (no evidence of disease) report. Why wait for cancer to 'come back', tests positive and start treating again? We will live longer if we treat this as systemic and continually transition from one choice to another. And in doing so, alternative choices need to be included because we could not always do the conventional.

The way to healing is a shot in the dark for both conventional and alternative choices. We are in the same boat. Some get good news, some are still struggling through after many choices, either way. The boards at BCO are enough proof of that, for both sides.
________________

BCO acquaintances --- I am a gentle person, helpful of others, I have a business and I struggle to work. I am on BCO for support and to give support in dealing with breast cancer which I do have... also in lymph nodes. I am real. If you can find the way to accept me, in light of the posts made above and the revealing of me as a person who is ‘different’… thank you, I appreciate your kindness.
____________
BLOG OWNER --- thank you for allowing me to speak up…. again and for the last time. Though I am disheartened that my REAL name was allowed in postings way back and I felt the need to step in at all. these references did not need to happen.

BLOG OWNER --- As above.... please will you consider writing on 714X, antineoplastons, or Warburg’s anerobic function in cancer cells. I would read these articles, as I have others that question. As many, I prefer to read both sides on all options. We need to question. Thanks.
_______________
blackcat and thenewme --- I am here on this hill in a lovely haven to rest and heal. Was a miracle of sorts that I ended up here of all places. I hope you will allow me the dignity and peace to do so on this thread and on the Internet and on BCO. I know you desire to keep other cancer people safe, I am not out to harm or mislead anyone. I simply come from my own belief system.

By the way, you mention the book and author where several chapters were devoted to Protocel, along with chapters on many alternative choices developed by Nobel Prize winners, geniuses, biochemists and physicists. Outsmart Your Cancer by Tanya Harter Pierce. If you have not done so, do yourselves the favor of reading the last chapter…. Concluding Comments. In my opinion, she could have started the book with that outstanding information too.
___________________

Third time is a charm. I am out of here. I am done. I promised myself that after the third attack and response here I would not even look back. Life to live.

Again, my gratitude to the blog owner. Thank you, sincerely.

By essaadams (not verified) on 25 Jul 2012 #permalink

@essaadams:

what the hell are you smoking? Forget your other business endeavors. The halllucinogenic weed that you are under the influence of can bring big bucks here in northern californa. I will help you move it for a 90/10 cut and no funny business. Whaddya say partner?

By Black-cat (not verified) on 25 Jul 2012 #permalink

essaadams:

Orac has written a great deal on how Otto Warburg would be turning in his grave if he knew how much his work would be misinterpreted by the alties. Perhaps you should go back and read some of those blogs because you clearly don't understand his what he was all about.

By Black-cat (not verified) on 25 Jul 2012 #permalink

Re:
black-cat —— the promotional piece was highly uncalled for. You are attempting to destroy me or something? You cannot. I am real. My beliefs may be different than yours, that’s all right. There is a whole world out there that you don’t understand. I embrace that world to an extent. The problem is you do not know my heart, you think I scam but I only wanted to help others.

But thank you for pointing out a few bios that I have been attempting to remember with my disabled brain for over a year, both how to find them and get in to change them and then to even do it.

Does this ring a bell?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vIwhnJ5K810

By Black-cat (not verified) on 25 Jul 2012 #permalink

@essaadams - our lovely esteemed host has written many posts about Dr Burzynski's ineffective treatment, the fact that he charges his patients outrageous sums for the normal chemotherapy that he prescribes (and refuses to let them take their prescriptions elsewhere). The results of a search on this blog brought up the following:

(for antineoplastons)
http://scienceblogs.com/insolence/?s=antineoplastons

You can, of course, use that wonderful search bar for "Warburg" too and come up with another list to read. I couldn't find anything searching 714X, but it could be there under another name.

I don't know if you ever can be convinced to seriously consider the difference between anecdotes vs. real studies, etc. Essa. I am glad you have a team working, and I hope the one you call an oncologist is a real, board-certified oncologist and not someone who has a dubious clinic that treats the "whole person" with unproven therapies. Too many people have spent all they have on those things and done nothing to improve their situation. It breaks my heart when I think about it, especially with what I have seen good oncologists do in the past five years or so.

Before those years and the brave, logical people that lived them (a good friend who acted as a surrogate father to me, my aunt, two uncles, and my mother-in-law & father-in-law), I was much more willing to consider alternatives, mostly because I had watched chemotherapy and radiation fail with my mother in 1977, and chemotherapy cause a stroke as a side effect of treatment for my father in 2002. I hadn't seen much success, etc., so I held them equally useless, and didn't realize that alternatives are often actually dangerous.

Since then, a lot of research on my part (and the real kind - I got a job in biotech in 2004 and had access to researchers and real journals) led me to realize the kind of research and testing that continues to go into finding a cure for cancer and into understanding it. I developed a bit more faith in the "system" that is there trying to improve human life through science-based medicine. I also learned how to find open clinical trials, etc., to bring up to oncologists (and found out I rarely needed to do so - the oncologists usually were very up-to-date on experimental treatments and their usefulness for the particular cancer being treated).

There is no conspiracy to "suppress the cure" - every company and researcher out there has motivation (for companies mostly financial, for researchers it is often personal, actually - they know someone who has or had cancer and want to improve their chances) to find a cure. If they ever find one that's really good at keeping cancer at bay, they will probably continue to research anyhow to reduce side effects and increase efficacy. It's what keeps the "machine" going, so to speak - new drugs...

I'm glad you said that you understood the motivation of most here has been an attempt to try to prevent harm. I hope you believe it. For my part (and I'm sure many others) arguing for science-based medicine is an attempt to prevent harm - both financial harm, possible harm by a dubious substance and harm from delaying evidence-based treatment. There is no other motivation.

I hope, even if you don't continue to take part in discussions, that you come back and read more. That you consider getting books about the best way to understand the information that is shared regarding treatments, science, evidence, etc. One that someone else recommended that I got and started reading was "Lies, Damned Lies, and Science: How to Sort Through the Noise Around Global Warming, the Latest Health Claims, and Other Scientific Controversies" - it's on Amazon and the Kindle version is not terribly expensive. I'm planning on outlining the highlights for Mr Woo so he might reconsider how true some of the claims he hears so often really are.

Best wishes to you.

Mrs Woo

@mrs.woo:

You just fell for her BS. She is marketing herself, here and on BCO. This idea that she lost her memory when she is challenged on the validity of what she is promoting and trying to profit off of is hogwash.

By Black-cat (not verified) on 25 Jul 2012 #permalink

Essa wins the biggest award for owning the most scam websites. She has numerology, astrology, dream interpretaion, healing with a feather and good intentions,rife, bowen therapy, flower essanence, and any other mother natures healing quack therapys that she can think of. Essa cllearly owns the corner market of bizarre quack remidies.

She also has a great defense. She cannot remember these websites when challenged on validity of the information.

By Black-cat (not verified) on 25 Jul 2012 #permalink

@MrsWoo:

Out of all that crap she wrote zero in on this;

" me. Protocel was not included. I do not sell the products I ordered to help my cancer situation. Now Protandim, I am a ‘rep’ for the product, but only so I get the better price for myself, I do not sell it…. yet. And I would not on BCO, I would send requests elsewhere, as I have already.
"

This is not a harmless cancer patient posting on BCO

By Black-cat (not verified) on 25 Jul 2012 #permalink

Still, on BCO you have scoffed at homeopathy as woo, though this vibrational therapy has been used the world over by hundreds of thousands of medical physicians and practioners. Bowen therapy, flower essences and tapping are vibrational choices upcoming in popularity. It’s a new world.

But the question we need to ask is not "are these approaches popular?" but "do these approaches work??"

Homeopathy does not work; we can safely conclude that from the fact that highly motivated homeopaths have been trying to produce evidence that it works for over a century and have come up with nearly nothing.

As for "upcoming approaches", anyone can speculate "Gee, what if flower essences/tapping/coffee enemas/smoking banana peels was a cure for cancer?" However, the burden of proof is on those who are doing the speculating to show evidence that it is, not on mainstream medicine to show that it isn't. It would be extraordinary to find a new anti-cancer therapy that actually worked, which is why, in order to believe someone who says they've discovered such a thing, we would need extraordinary evidence.

By Antaeus Feldspar (not verified) on 26 Jul 2012 #permalink

@Black-cat - I didn't condone anything she is doing - I invited her to keep reading here. I can see her whole post is a polite "really I'm such a wonderful person and I don't do anything but share my story" defense. I can't stop her from posting on BCO, or here, but I can hope that if she hangs out here long enough and maybe reads a book about critical thinking she might start thinking critically. It's unlikely... but Mr Woo's magical thinking has chinks in its armor and some small areas here and there where he will prefer medicine to alternatives. Maybe getting people back out of the rabbit hole takes as long as it did for them to get down it in the first place.

I provided her a link to the first search she asked for and told her to use the search bar for the others - she's asking Orac to rewrite posts. I suspect the one I couldn't find has other names to it and has been probably covered here as well - one of his biggest topics is cancer woo.

I told her I hoped she has a real oncologist. Some people are supposed "cancer doctors" out there that have no training in oncology - the way she describes everything else I'm worried she doesn't actually have an oncologist, and it's something she should really be doing.

Everything in my post is a refutation of cancer woo and an encouragement to learn critical thinking and read more here. Nothing condoned what she teaches/shares and/or agreed or disagreed that she is not marketing herself. I don't know if she is. I also don't know if continued reading here will ever make things "click' and make her more skeptical of magic tonics, special energy, etc. I can only hope it does.

I know woo isn't harmless. I also know there are various reasons people start down that road - even things like my own doubt about medicine because both parents died of cancer. It's why I told her that I later worked in biotech, found out a lot more, learned about journals (got to read them!), etc., and learned that my bias was wrong, then had the joy of having several people survive their cancers using only evidence-based treatment.

Yes, her post is nothing but a "I am so polite, so wonderful and not being mean like you all; you all are making unfair allegations, blah blah blah."

I neither agreed or disagreed with that. I merely told her how to find more of Orac's post, that evidence-based medicine has no reason to "hide" cures, etc., and that she should learn some critical thinking.

I just did it without being confrontational. It probably will make no difference, but I can hope that maybe she'll at least read all of Orac's other articles on bogus cancer cures...

I had come across 714X early on in my studies of health scams. It's another MMS or Protocel:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/714-X

I'm sure we'll hear from the people who sell this garbage any minute now...

By Marc Stephens … (not verified) on 26 Jul 2012 #permalink

I am so embarrassed my country legitimizes this garbage:

714-X is manufactured in Canada, where it is legal to purchase for personal use through a physician under the Special Access Programme of Health Canada, a "compassionate use" law which provides access to unproven treatments for terminal illnesses when no recognized alternative exists. However, in October 2004, Health Canada told the manufacturer to remove all references to the compound from its website.[5] On July 28, 2006, Justice François Lemieux of the Federal Court of Canada granted a request for judicial review undertaken by a group of 714X patients. The judgment voided Health Canada's policy statement and restored access to 714-X under the Special Access Program.

Here's the "scientific data" on 714-X from the scumbags who make it, less than 100 miles from where I'm sitting right now. Warning: there's an obnoxious "auto-play" video you have to mute or stop if you don't want to hear lies about 714-X in a charming French-Canadian accent.

http://www.cerbe.com/english/prod_714X.html#donneesscientifiques

By Marc Stephens … (not verified) on 26 Jul 2012 #permalink

Oh brother.
@essaadams, spare me the "poor pity little me" victim routine. It's a manipulator's classic response.

Again, it's not about your emotional, financial, mental, health, career, or educational status! We could have a sob-story contest here to see whose situation is "worse," but that's not the point.

It's about promoting dangerous and reckless medical advice, products, and services to cancer patients. It's about FACTS and INTEGRITY.

If we really have to consider dramatic and emotional appeals, how about discussing the emotional, health, and financial situations of a hypothetical breast cancer patient, a young mother of three young children who reads your "miraculous" testimonials and ends up self treating her aggressive breast cancer by tapping and using "vibrational therapy" and flower essences? She ends up dying a horrific and painful death after her ever-progressing tumors break through her skin while her children suffer the trauma of watching it all. You say you're a gentle person whose intention is not to harm or mislead, but I'm telling you that's EXACTLY what you are doing.

@MrsWoo, your approach may be more likely to sink in. I should probably just stay away and not let this stuff get to me.

@Marc
From the Wiki article you posted:

The FDA has banned both importation and sale of 714-X as a form of health fraud, and at least one prison sentence has been handed down for importing it into America.

Funny that the alties always accuse me of being an FDA boogeyman. Believe me, if I was really FDA, our prisons would be FAR more crowded than they are already!

thenewme,

Has 714-X ever up on that other website you frequent? I'm wondering how "popular" it is on the woo Top-10.

Since the FDA banned it, it must be pretty good stuff. And I'm sure it's available "on the street." If you can buy crack and meth, you can probably buy this. Their website even instructs you how and where to self-inject it, in a groin artery.

Funny how Essa asks the BLOG OWNER (Orac) to cover three more forms of quackery. Is she expecting ringing endorsements here?

By Marc Stephens … (not verified) on 26 Jul 2012 #permalink

@Marc
Oh yeah, it's there! There is no woo too strong for BCO!

I'll give you three guesses about who has posted the most about 714x!

Of course they even have science-y sounding links and articles to bolster their claims about it!

She apparently learned from a "kinesiology test (!!)" that she needs 714-X, Ojibwa tea, bloodroot extract, laetrile, paw paw, etc., for her breast cancer (spread to lymph nodes) self-treatment but complains that it costs $800 for a 21-day treatment and she needs 3+ months.

@Marc, that sounds expensive for a tiny amount, but that's probably *before* somebody homeopathisizes (!) it! Heck, a teaspoon of that stuff could probably cure everybody if they'd just believe it and want it bad enough!!

Maybe that's why they always recommend lots of alt treatments - to sell to each other in a giant scammy network to be able to afford their own treatments? This particular person also says she's doing Protocel, UVB IV blood treatments, and a whole host of other heavily marketed woo. Ugh!

@thenewme - I get really angry at people who sell woo, too. Maybe it was the fact I was woke up by a freaked out dog (she's humongous, but afraid of thunderstorms and uppity yellow tabby cats) at 1:30 a.m.and hadn't had much sleep yet - the amount of sleep required for clever but catty wasn't there?

Probably useless no matter how you handle a true-believer...

@MSII - it's a really common thing, actually, for people who are being debunked to throw out other alternative theories and ask Orac to write them up too - not sure if it's "misery loves company" or some kind of sour grapes _ "Hey, they totally trashed my favorite magical treatment, can't wait to read about what they say about this other one?"

Or maybe they're functionally illiterate and/or believe "there's no such thing as bad publicity."

Essaadams said:

Now Protandim, I am a ‘rep’ for the product, but only so I get the better price for myself, I do not sell it…. yet. And I would not on BCO, I would send requests elsewhere, as I have already.

I'm trying to understand this. In response to your glowing testimonials on a large breast cancer patient support site, you receive requests for Protandim info or products. You then send these requests "elsewhere."

You admit you are a rep for Protandim, a scammy MLM product that's has absolutely no credible evidence for treating ANYTHING (see Dr. Harriet Hall), yet you happily refer these desperate breast cancer patients to one of your MLM co-scammers to buy a bogus product for their potentially life threatening disease?

Please feel free to correct anything I've misunderstood here.

@MrsWoo:

Thanks for taking the time to clarify your position and for your well written and thought provoking post. I have been combating the alties on BCO for too long. I have seen too many innocents harmed by scammers on BCO.

For some, the line between scammer and victim are blurred. I have not paid much attention to Essa's posts on that site because she is so far out there, I did not deem her one of the more dangerous. Believe me, there are some very dangerous people on that site that I question if they ever really had breast cancer. They refuse to talk about any details of having cancer and are talking scared vulnerable women out of treatment. I am helpless to do anything about it.

According to afriend, Essa has had surgery with margins that were not clear and has decided to treat herself. She may end up suffering Chili's fate. Chilli is an MLMer, too.

Maybe, your soft touch approach will reach her. I sure hope so. It's certainly worth a try.

You are a good egg, Mrs Woo. If I had a Mr. Woo, I would give him the boot, after I slapped hm around some.

By Black-cat (not verified) on 26 Jul 2012 #permalink

@Black-cat - Orac will usually post when he someone who has been using woo to treat cancer and has been in the news will die. It breaks my heart every time. The big "advantage" that woo has over science/evidence-based medicine is that an oncologist will be very honest with you. They will tell you you have this cancer at this stage with this percentage chance with this therapy, this percentage with this, etc. People hear a percentage of good and they automatically know there is a percentage of failure. Alternative medicine insinuates they can cure everything while doing its best to demonize evidence-based therapies. So often I wish it were illegal for them to do what they do.

Mr Woo is a wonderful guy - one of those "give you the shirt off his back" folks (sometimes literally). I can't count how much money we've spent buying alternative treatments for people when he finds out they're sick. His favorite for cancer is a $119/month (last we did it) mushroom supplement that is supposed to strengthen the immune system to help it fight the cancer better. I get very angry at what alternative world view does to him - so many nights he lays awake worrying about all of the alternative "real news" newscasts he has found on the internet. I get angry because I'm sure the people proclaiming the end of the world and selling everything to help you survive it are making money hand over fist while they sell speculation as fact to people. There are also regular attempts by Mr Woo to heal me. The longer I've been sick, though, the greater the length of time between them.

Will either of us change Essa's choices? Unlikely. However, the ones watching this and not contributing still can be convinced. I hope maybe one person considered the book I mentioned (planning on outlining it for Mr Woo!) and decides to borrow it or buy it.

I really hope she has a real oncologist working with her and that part of her treatment is science-based, or that she is willing to consider evidence-based medicine quickly if no real improvement is noted. It's such a waste to have someone lose their life chasing unfounded promises.

Mrs. Woo that was the most touching heart felt hopeful observation Of human behaviour that I have read in a very long time. Thank you so very much!

By Kay Hanson (not verified) on 26 Jul 2012 #permalink

@Kay Hanson - I'm terribly tender-hearted. Um. You're welcome, I guess. Wasn't anything but part of the conversation at hand.

It is easy to understand why alternative medicine is so tempting. How that industry works is what is so maddening. There is a "Bible-believing" husband and wife team that has a company called Daniel Chapter One that treats every disease in the world under the sun and encourages patients to quit their "poisonous allopathic drugs." When the FTC got involved and ordered them to quit practicing medicine without a license and that their call-in show where they gave advice to people was the equivalent thereof, they did a workaround where callers call in, they they loudly complain that the evil US government will not let them answer callers questions anymore and ask if anyone out there might have advice for the caller, and an "friendly person" calls in and tells the caller every supplement they will need to treat their condition (instead of teh eeevil pharma drugs). They of course also read the mandatory quack miranda here and there, and explain that it is the government's infringement on their rights of free speech and religion that requires that they do so.

Those are the kinds of people I believe deserve disdain and public discussion. True believers - well most I assume are real true believers, and that they have been misled by the likes of the Daniel Chapter Ones, Mike Adams, etc. They never learned critical thinking skills and/or were followers of a philosophy or religion that made them more susceptible to the type of claims made by alternative practitioners.

Or, as I like to believe, they are just not intelligent.

Meant no disrespect to Mr Woo of course. I'm thinking of the folks who follow Daniel Chapter One and the like.

@Jergen - it is okay (one of his first attempts to cure me was products from DC1). From some of what I've read, unlikely, but okay. It would be interesting to one day classify the various "types" of alternate medicine adopters. An article I read about naturopaths said that many of their customers are actually well-educated people. Goodness knows if anti-vaccinationists are any indication, intelligence doesn't have much to do with it - many assume because of their level of education they are "qualified" to know how to treat themselves better than a doctor even if their education has nothing to do with medicine. Maybe it is being intelligent enough to get an education and arrogant enough to believe the education somehow taught you everything?

DC1 - I really wonder how anyone can assume they are credible though. Part of it is there are a number of people who believe that if someone has a radio show they must have to have some kind of qualifications first and also be restricted, especially in commerce, to only tell the truth. Mr Woo actually believes "if they say it on the radio it has to be true or they wouldn't be allowed to." It's an unfortunate assumption - he doesn't realize that these are nothing more than long paid promotions.

Mr Woo is humble enough to admit to most that I am more intelligent than he is (I'm not bragging... our running joke is that he married me for tech support). He is not unintelligent though, not really - more trusting and credible and, like so many, not taught critical thinking to any degree. He really believes your word should be your bond and a handshake should seal a deal. Most of the time, he is around people who have similar values, at least, so he doesn't get taken advantage very often in day-to-day life, at least.

I wish the woo meisters were prosecuted. The money is so easy and they know that they can get away with murder. Look at how long Robert O Young has been in the biz. He was arrested in Utah and relocated to California and was back in business in no time. He's not under the radar. There was a big write up about hm in the San Diego paper a few years ago

Most families of victims seem to never realize that they were scammed and the few that do are too embarressed to prosecute. It was my hope that Kim Tinkum's family pressed charges but sadly they didnt.

Mr woo sounds like a big hearted man.

By Black-cat (not verified) on 26 Jul 2012 #permalink

Trusting....makes sense. He sounds like a kind man.

There is a big anti-vaccination movement going on in my neck of the woods. They interviewed a guy on TV who wrote a book on the "horrors" of vaccinations and he provides instructions in the book on how to legally get out of vaccinating your child by claiming its for religious reasons. the parents who are choosing not to vaccinate their kids live in wealthy communities. The thought of losing a child to a preventable disease just blows my mind. I simply cannot understand taking such a risk. It's that lack of understanding that makes me unable to understand the altie world. It's very black and white to me.

Someone must be selling a kit -- our head RN in immunizations is running into parents (and grandparents, shame on them, they should remember what childhood diseases were like) who are asking for exemptions and repeat the same crap word for word about why they feel they should be allowed to endanger their children.

It's almost as though someone has provided them with a checklist.

@Jergen - my children do not know what diptheria or whooping cough is. They might vaguely know measles, but are just as likely to not really know either. They've probably heard the word "polio" but don't connect it to a plague that would make many children ill during the summer and leave many with permanent issues afterwards. In my baby book it lists that they suspect I had rubella at one point and that I had chicken pox for sure. I never saw a child with anything but chicken pox in my whole growing up. A lot of parents who are vaccinating children today have never seen a single case of the illness they are vaccinating against, let alone one that has taken a turn for the worse and left someone blind, deaf, paralyzed, or dead. The one illness people still have some fear of is tetanus, mostly because all mothers will say "if you get cut and it might be a dirty implement or if you get a puncture wound, make sure your tetanus shot is updated," so people know tetanus is to be avoided (or at least most do) though they have no idea what it is (they probably think it's like rabies or something, I know I did when I was ten - I knew we always had to vaccinate our pets for rabies, so I figured it had to be like that or distemper, which is what my father would say the nocturnal animals we ended up shooting had when they would show up in the middle of the day staggering and walking in circles).

When you get a lot of craziness about vaccines being so dangerous and have no real knowledge of the diseases they are preventing, any caring parent is going to be more worried about the vaccine than the illness. It's human nature. I was really happy to see a parent group started warning people about the dangers of meningitis and recommending the meningitis vaccine for teens. I had no idea that by the time the symptoms got alarming it could often be too late to save the child. When they offered it to me but admitted it was a bit early (but safe at that age), I said "go ahead, the more needles the better!"

More than arguing with anti-vax nonsense we need to be teaching people about the diseases those vaccines are preventing. We need to publish case histories, patient stories, etc., of the real dangers of these illnesses, the misery of them and the possible harm. Any parent, if they knew that the disease was miserable and the vaccine relatively safe (and safer than the disease) would opt for the disease unless they were struggling with other issues (i.e., a previous child with severe reactions, knowing an autistic child and parents who insisted that it had to be the vaccines and knowing them sell enough to see the coincidence and being doubtful, etc., - they would be a little more hesitant).

A real issue with vaccines today is just lack of awareness. My ex-husband's current wife finished her BSN and I was so happy to hear they taught her about the illnesses that vaccines have practically eliminated, the possibility of complications, etc. Hopefully she is prepared to help deal with parent questions. However, science based medicine has an obligation at this point to educate parents about the illnesses they have never seen. It is one of the easiest way to encourage continued vaccine uptakes in large enough numbers, and might actually sway some fence-sitters to come down on the evidence-based medicine side.

Strangely, the book I am reading about critical thinking says that nothing is black-and-white!

Maybe living with Mr Woo has helped a bit in understanding how they think. Maybe my own earlier reluctance regarding chemo, etc., for cancer (two bad experiences - one my mother, one my father) and then learning so much about it when I worked in biotech and the realization that it was still very much a numbers game and it didn't necessarily reflect the effectiveness of the treatment itself (and hearing the researchers talk about improving the comfort of the patient, etc., looking for better, more effective treatments that had fewer side effects... all of it really opened my eyes to the passion there is in medical research).

It is very black and white in a way - but you have to trust the numbers and know what the reality is. In vaccines, a lot of parents do not know the reality of childhood diseases. In cancer, a lot of people know horror stories of chemo and surgery and that gets preyed on by alternative medicine (which is evil of them). The big thing about the... well, "customers" of alternative med is they are human. They are often making decisions with a lack of information and/or from a position of fear. The better we understand that, the better equipped we are to meet them at their level, address their concerns and hopefully help them make rational decisions for the best outcome in their health care.

*would opt for the VACCINE - sorry about that - fighting a headache all afternoon and don't have a real preview here

New protcel victim on BCO:

"Hi Kat,

After I asked you where to receive the protocel I purchased and started to use two months ago. I like to ask that why I don't see lysing? By the way I refused to receive any conventional threatment and choose to try alternative ways. So everybody became against me even my GP. I was diognased one year ago and at the follow up (6 months later) ultrasound, mamogram etc. they found out it spreade under my arm. It was at February. I requested bone scan from my GP because as I refused their threatment nobody seems to care my sitution. Now I'm out of Canada and going to return end of September. What should I request from my GP as bloodwork etc.?"

@AFriend: Oh my gosh, that is so very sad...that poor woman. Mislead into woo and now she has mets that she thinks she can treat with a fake medication? Her poor family. Of course, there will never be any documentation of her death as a protocel failure. It'll be "she started it too late" or "she didn't take it correctly" or something else. Always the patient's fault, rather than those who lied to her about conventional therapy risks and benefits vs woo risks (and lack of benefit)

@Mrs Woo- There are MD's who have seen the limitations of
conventional medicine and are now alternative. It has nothing to do with "intelligence". Did you go to medical school? Your comments about vaccines are simple-minded- I believe in vaccines but not at the current rate given. There can be synergistic and cumulative effects for certain children- one size does not fit all.

MIDawn - sounds like she didn't have surgery - how can people be SO f-ing stupid!!!

@Mrs Woo- I am really sorry about your condition- I just read
another of your comments- I am sorry that you were taken in by the unscrupulous alt med. What is your diagnosis? Of course the drugs are palliative and anyone who would tell you to stop taking them should not be listened to.
As for cancer treatment, however, I have seen too many relatives succumb to cancer and die after the horrors of conventional treatment which they endured for months or years.

@ken

[citation needed]

And yes Mike Adams is a nut case but he does know a little about nutrition.

ken,

I believe in vaccines

Vaccines aren't something to be 'believed in.' Their efficacy has proven by actual scientific inquiry, just like gravity, germ theory, and evolution by natural selection. There's nothing to 'believe in,' either you accept the evidence or you choose to ignore it.

As for cancer treatment, however, I have seen too many relatives succumb to cancer and die after the horrors of conventional treatment which they endured for months or years.

As for cancer treatment, I have seen many relatives beat cancer and survive through the wonders of conventional treatment which they endured for months or years.

ken,

I believe in vaccines

Vaccines aren't something to be 'believed in.' Their efficacy has proven by actual scientific inquiry, just like gravity, germ theory, and evolution by natural selection. There's nothing to 'believe in,' either you accept the evidence or you choose to ignore it.

As for cancer treatment, however, I have seen too many relatives succumb to cancer and die after the horrors of conventional treatment which they endured for months or years.

As for cancer treatment, I have seen many relatives beat cancer and survive through the wonders of conventional treatment which they endured for months or years.

Whoops, sorry for the double post O_O

And yes Hitler was a nut case but he did know a little about politics

/Godwin

@Adam G name them

ken, I'm not going to list the names of my relatives on this forum.

Do you not believe that there are individuals for whom chemotherapy was wildly successful?

Not for older patients as these relatives were.

@MIDawn @AFriend...That thread is now closed by the request of the supposed nurse that Protocel worked for (or who works for Protocel)...it's so tragic that there couldn't be a warning label put up on it . I feel so bad for the poster seeking help after being tricked into a "miracle cure".

I cannot imagin how that monster looks in the mirror.

Not for older patients as these relatives were.

ken, i'm not quite understanding what your argument is. You knew some elderly individuals for which chemotherapy was sadly not effective so...what, exactly? What's your point?

Case in point -friend told about tumor shrinkage everything that Dr. Isaac's talks about in the above link-always had hope-wound up with a colostomy from cheno-he was being treated for lung cancer-the chemo ate away his digestive tract-at MD Anderson- races to ER after collapsing numerous times -all this for five years. He was over 60. died at 65

@AFriend:

If I am interpreting this correctly, this woman purchased protocel from kat, who has been openly selling this crap on BCO. She is now asking Kat for medical advice for her unteated breast cancer on BCO, who will probably give it to her with no interference from the mods(who seem to cheer alties on who shun conventional treatment). Some things never change.

BCO does not seem to be fulfilling thier mission statement:

http://www.breastcancer.org/about_us/

Also check this out:

All medical information on the Breastcancer.org web site and in our printed materials is reviewed by members of the PAB, which includes over 60 practicing medical professionals from around the world who are leaders in their fields

I wonder if all those medical personel listed know what is going on with the altie boards, after all they are responsible for viewing all medical information on site. Where are these medical professionals?

By Black-cat (not verified) on 27 Jul 2012 #permalink

Dr Weil wrote about this in 2010-quote "The National Cancer Institute (NCI) performed animal studies of Entelev/Cancell in 1978 and 1980 and found that it had no anti-cancer activity whatsoever. Another series of NCI tests in 1990 and 1991 using human cancer cells did not find sufficient activity to warrant further testing. And beware: the manufacturer of the supplements claims that chemotherapy interferes with their effectiveness"

The moderators should remove the entire protocel thread. She was working her own marketing woo on those fools for months now. So she closes it while letting everyone know she's opening her own blog, Clever way to build a customer base on a free web site. And the mods looked the other way the whole time.

Ken, you're being incoherent. You're leaving everyone to guess at what you actually think from your cryptic, incomplete mutterings. Why don't you try expressing the arguments you're trying to get us to accept in syllogism form?

By Antaeus Feldspar (not verified) on 27 Jul 2012 #permalink

@AFriend - that is heart-breaking. If anyone from a science-based perspective speaks up over there, they're considered as "unsupportive of the patient's choice" rather than "concerned she is killing herself," too.

@Ken - I'm sorry you find me simple-minded. My comment actually suggested those who embrace alt-med are not unintelligent, and used observations made about parents who tend to refuse vaccines as part of the argument that intelligence does not necessarily affect belief in alternative medicine. I have admitted to many of the regulars here that I'm probably nowhere near as intelligent as they are.

I lost my mother to cancer after less than six months of conventional treatment in 1977, and my father to cancer in less than six months of conventional treatment in 2002, so I can relate to losing family members that you love to cancer after they have taken traditional treatment. However, other friends and relatives are cancer survivors with traditional treatment, too. Since oncologists often give odds of survival at the outset of treatment and odds for how long, it can be believed that my parents both probably still fell into statistical probability. That is why alternative treatments sound so wonderful. With no real research, no real blinded, valid studies to demonstrate their effectiveness, a patient really cannot know what chance they have of improvement or survival with an alternative treatment. Instead of being given unbiased study results, patients of alternative providers are given "case studies" (pretty much anecdotes patient by patient) to read. In my own illness journey I realized quickly that rarely does anyone go back to an alternative provider when the treatment fails. They aren't completely sure it should work in the first place, so they just move to the next alternative treatment to try that one, too. Alternative providers have no record of how many times their treatment fails, what its long-term effects are, its side effects, etc., and often they don't care, or they call really serious side-effects "herxheimer reactions" and assure patients that it is just their body "expelling the toxins from their system."

That's okay for those selling those wonderful "cancer cures" though - they demonize researched treatments as "cut/poison/burn" while offering a "cure" that uses "your body's own healing ability" for however much they are charging. If pressed for studies, etc., they come back with "we can't afford studies" and/or "we're the little guy being repressed by big pharma, but you can trust us because we only want to heal you."

Ken, you do realize your last post is actually against Protocel - is that because you're trying to show us alternative providers sometimes don't recommend all alternative therapies? We're aware of that.

Actually, I can sort of argue that science-based medicine already knows there are patients that cannot use the current vaccine schedule. Patients with some allergies, some diseases, etc., sometimes cannot take part or even all of the vaccine schedule. It is one of the reasons they try so hard to get everyone who can be immunized, immunized - so we can protect those who cannot be vaccinated by keeping the immunity of those around them high.

Science-based medicine is also honest about things like risks of harm. Anyone honestly arguing vaccine safety will never say that vaccines are perfectly safe, or that a treatment will be perfectly safe, etc. That's why they actually have side effect profiles for every treatment - because they acknowledge side effects, adverse events, etc.

I think that all of the regular commentators on this board would agree that Mrs. Woo is a highly intelligent woman.

By Black-cat (not verified) on 27 Jul 2012 #permalink

@Redioh:

The brain dead mods only closed her thread after she requested it. It should have been closed when it was obvious that she was selling protocel. She's claimed one victim that we know of and I find it sickening that this was permitted and encouraged.

I see Vivre just took some time to delete a lot of her self incriminating posts like this one:

("Usana. If any of you would like to be the Usana liaison for your area, let me know. At the very least… ")

Sometimes when posts are deleted they stay up when you search for them. In this case a usana search will bring up the post on page 3. Vivre has also deleted all the statements that she made about her website being a non profit and all proceedes from her website and usana sales go to women with breast cancer. Interesting.

She has left plenty of posts up where she raves about Usana being the greatest supplements and skin care products in the world.

But she leaves stupid posts up like this one where she is instructing a BCO member not to get her grandchild vaccinated:

("Kaara-There are doctors who do not vaccinate. You just have to really hunt for them. I know a doc who has NEVER pushed vacs, and none of his patients have ever had any of the diseases these vacs are suppose to prevent. The sheer number of these being pushed on our children, all in the name of profit, is devasting. The rising incidences of autism and childhood allergies is just heartbreaking, and so unnecessary")

I wonder if she deleted all those posts pertaining to her trolling the newly diagnosed forums for more victims. Lucy has been laying low too.

I doubt they are gone for good. I don't know of any other website where they can find such easy prey. I hope some of you can carry on showing others (esp. new members) what she is all about. The mods sure as hell arent going to do anythng about it.

Vivre has still been posting the stupid on her website, though:

http://preventcanswers.ning.com/video/door-to-door-vaccinations-mom-to-…

By Black-cat (not verified) on 27 Jul 2012 #permalink

Vivre loves to talk about and recommend books on BCO:

("We have had quite a lot of discussions on great books in the past. I have read a pile of great books and I credit reading with getting me on the road to great health. Anti Cancer was one of my favorites too.

A book I loved that was like a bible to me during treatments was "The Wisdom of Menopause" by Dr. Northrup. When she talked about women needing to listen to that inner voice, and it would help us to make the right decision, it really hit home. I realized my inner voice was telling me to say no to drugs, which is why I was having such a visceral reaction to the idea of taking arimidex, my onc's drug of choice for me. Dr. Northrup even talked about these drugs and said they aren't right for everyone, and we needed to each decide what felt right for us. When I read that, it was the first step to getting my power back and I got the strength to start to question my doctors.

That book created a monster! I will never look at doctors again the same way. The book is not about cancer, it is about becoming the woman we are meant to be. That is why I loved it so much. Who wants to think of cancer all the time?

Q-What do they call the person who graduates last in his class from med school? A- Doctor")

All of those books she discusses in great detail can be found right here in her amazon bookstore:

http://astore.amazon.com/prevecansw-20?node=1&page=1

Her real name is not on her website or amazon so I am not outting her.

I think vivre needs to get busy with deleting more posts. IMO, she is the most dangerous enterprenuer on BCO. I see her as a predator that has a cash cow in BCO. This has been going on for years and why the mods are blind to it are beyond me esp. when they have recieved dozens of emails alerting them to this.

By Black-cat (not verified) on 27 Jul 2012 #permalink

Maybe some of these anonymous mods are alties. Makes sense to me. Assign an altie mod to an altie forum?

I was absolutely horrified when I saw the mods joining in the cheering of wornoutmom to contiue seeking alternaive treatment when they clearly saw that her progress from stage 3 to stage 4. I would not be surprised if the mods on that forum are alties. They clearly know nothing about science or medicine.

By Black-cat (not verified) on 27 Jul 2012 #permalink

@black-cat, you are obviously jealous of wornoutmom and angry. AGAIN, please read carefully and get your facts straight. wornoutmom had Insulin Potentiated Therapy and Herceptin. Go back and read her thread and blog. Be happy for her. She is doing great. Dr, Lodi cleaned up the mess conventional medicine left behind. Had she stuck with conventional medicine, she'd be dead because as we all know MOs have no clue what they are doing.

[Apr 28, 2012 01:51 PM, by wornoutmom

“As those who have followed me know I had horrible health care that left me riddled with fear. After being misdiagnoed I still tried surgery with my providers which was a disaster. 3 weeks after surgery my lump returned. I was told it was scar tissue. I had so many mistakes on my case it lead to an 8 page complaint letter of these mistakes. I literally had to take an anti-anxiety medication just to walk through the doors. I can’t go into specifics at this time. I plan to fully do this once the matter is resolved. So fast forward and low and behold that lump was a reoccurance. My lump was in the chest wall which I have since learned from other patients with the same lump there are doctors who refuse to perform sugery without treatment first as it is to hard to get clear margins. This is why I think my biggest mistake given my type of tumor was to have surgery. I spent more than two years on birth control pills with cancer and it only spread to 3A. A few months later I saw the results of my surgery.

After several complaints I finally got a PET scan. I had a reoccuance in the exact same spot which I believe was the “scar tissue”. I had a tumor on my spine, innumerable bone mets, widespread lymph nodes, and in one month with tykerb and tamoxifen it had traveled to my liver. Due to fear I only trusted them to prescribe pills. I arrived at my clinic in Sept 1 and received care until the end of Dec. I was on a scaled down plan due to finances. On Dec 8th I had a follow up PET scan. With a full head of hair and no suffering or effects it revealed that all my lymph nodes were clear, both tumors were gone, the liver was clear, and a significant decrease in my bone mets! NO sufferering,…”]

All probably due to herceptin

@leah - go away

AFriend, I understand your frustration, but perhaps not the best response to Leah.
Leah, I do not and can not believe what the woman wrote. She still had bony mets by her own admission therefore she is not cured. Difficult to tweak out what helped what. You choose to believe it was the 'alternative' stuff that has helped her, the rest of us see a lot of claims but no solid proof. The burden still lies on you to prove your claims.

@leah - so, where is the TV spot that wornoutmom was supposed to be filming? The TV spot that was supposed to proclaim her success to the world? By the way, YouTube is not TV.

That is so common - the whole use traditional plus alternative and then when you see improvement you immediately say "hey! That alternative stuff must have done the trick!"

Like Mr Woo when he had MSRA and did antibiotics plus MMS... :-|

That's a 3 month old post that you've used, Leah. How is she doing now? or even in the last month.. .

When wornoutmom reappeared after a long absence the posts were different. She was selling something, no doubt. The ridiculous teases and insistence that she couldn't talk yet until the grand rollout......of whatever.

Guess the Dr Oz appearance of the miracle cure has been delayed.

As I said if she is on herceptin, I would expect that would be why she is having a response, not from IPT.

@Leah:

What's the matter stupid, did you run out of material? You just copied and pasted that from this blog post at July 13, 10:20 pm. It's been asked and answered.

By Black-cat (not verified) on 28 Jul 2012 #permalink

As I said in my response, the first time you posted that stupidity, wornoutmom is getting herceptin and zometa at a legitimate medical facility before she visits Lodi. Anybody with half a brain would deduct that you cannot credit any treatment success to IPT, ozone therapy, vitamin C and hydrogen peroxide. But you don't have half a brain do you?

By Black-cat (not verified) on 28 Jul 2012 #permalink

IPT is low dose chemo which only targets the cancer cells. (See traditional chemo VS IPT www.iptforcancer.com/index.php...)
That's why wornoutmom and many many others are thriving. The success she is having is realy not unique. IPT has been around for years. Unfortunately affluent stage 4 cancer patients are the only ones who can afford to get treated at the top alternative/integrative clinics. If the cancer has spread, more than one round of treatment is usually needed. The bill could get quite expensive $15-60K. Those who don't have the money are stuck either trying to treat themselves with alternative do-it-yourself treatments or are forced to do standard chemotherapy and we all know how those stories typically end.

As for vitamin C, naturopatic oncs and integrative doctors typically recommend it. The chemical community is only now considering it useful.

Peer Reviewed Publication Supporting Intravenous Vitamin C for Cancer Patients

Collaboration between Conventional Oncologists and Alternative Medical Practitioners Results in New Direction for Old Methodology

WICHITA, Kan., March 25, 2011 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The Riordan Clinic announced today publication in the Journal of Translational Medicine results of a collaboration between oncologists, alternative medicine practitioners, and basic researchers, which proposes a new use of intravenous vitamin C for treatment of cancer.

The paper, available freely online at www.translational-medicine.com..., describes the possibility of using intravenous vitamin C to treat inflammation associated with cancer. www.prnewswire.com/news-releas...

@blackcat I can certainly understand why you’d be disappointed about wornoutmom’s success with IPT. Maybe I’d be too if I suffered through standard chemotherapy for nothing. BTW IPT is low dose chemo that ONLY targets the cancer cells. Many cancer patients are having success with it. (See standard chemotherapy VS IPT to learn how it works www.iptforcancer.com/index.php...)
Unfortunately, the services advanced integrative/alternative cancer clinics offer are not exactly cheap, especially if you are stage 4 and need more than one round, so only those who are well-to-do can afford them.
Wornoutmom is blessed to have her family, friends and community fundraising on her behalf. She is definitely a fighter. My thoughts and prayers are always with her. Most people in her position would have either just tried some alternative do-it-yourself treatment or did standard chemo…and we all know how those stories usually end.
As for intravenous vitamin c, the chemical community is finally waking to the benefits. Maybe one day IPT will offered as well. Too many people are suffering for nothing.
Peer Reviewed Publication Supporting Intravenous Vitamin C for Cancer Patients
Collaboration between Conventional Oncologists and Alternative Medical Practitioners Results in New Direction for Old Methodology
WICHITA, Kan., March 25, 2011 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The Riordan Clinic announced today publication in the Journal of Translational Medicine results of a collaboration between oncologists, alternative medicine practitioners, and basic researchers, which proposes a new use of intravenous vitamin C for treatment of cancer.
The paper, available freely online at www.translational-medicine.com..., describes the possibility of using intravenous vitamin C to treat inflammation associated with cancer. The rationale is provided that intravenous, but not oral, vitamin C may be capable of addressing issues in cancer patients such as wasting (cachexia), immune suppression, and improving quality of life. Citing 246 references, the paper synthesized existing knowledge regarding the use of intravenous vitamin C for numerous medical conditions and seeks re-evaluation of the place of intravenous vitamin C in the context of conventional oncology practice. www.prnewswire.com/news-releas...

Orca, now that you finally posted my first post, you can delete the second one. It's the same info. I thought the first one got "lost". Thanks.

ORAC, your thread has turned into a gossiping fishwives frenzy Lol
And so, it will be my last visit to this nuthouse turned into slaughterhouse

“The Best way to handle the Pseudo-Skeptic is to clearly state your case, then ignore them. This drives them nuts when they get no reactions, except from their own brood. A Pseudo-Skeptic that is watched, but not paid any other attention to, often is reduced to a snivelling, immature WHELP, who eventually goes away or places himself in the position where even his own kind tend to ignore him (or her)”

Pseudoskeptics, I am going to let you drag me way way down to your level, but just for one moment ;)

WOOPIE, get a grip, calling me a murderer…, you’ve lost quite a few nuts, bolts and marbles as far as the eye can see
BLACKCAT, calling me ignorant is sooo ignorant of you – your posts are littered with mistakes which testify to your lack of the most basic education: spelling and grammar . Your ‘capabilities’ in that regard are so limited you would not even be accepted in junior high

SORCERESS, you have obviously fallen into your own cauldron, but what you need is a chill pill for your symptoms of Argumentum ad Hominem (abusive and circumstantial):

"The fallacy of attacking the character or circumstances of an individual who is advancing a statement or an argument instead of trying to disprove the truth of the statement or the soundness of the argument. Often the argument is characterized simply as a personal attack.
The personal attack is also often termed an "ad personem argument": the statement or argument at issue is dropped from consideration or is ignored, and the locutor's character or circumstances are used to influence opinion.
The fallacy draws its appeal from the technique of "getting personal." The assumption is that what the locutor is saying is entirely or partially dictated by his character or special circumstances and so should be disregarded.
The "tu quoque" or charging the locutor with "being just like the person" the locutor speaking about, is a narrower variety of this fallacy. In other words, rather than trying to disprove a remark about someone's character or circumstances, one accuses the locutor of having the same character or circumstances.
Since the circumstantial variety of the ad hominem can be regarded as a special case of the abusive, the distinction between the abusive and the circumstantial is often ignored.

Informal Structure of ad Hominem
Person L says argument A.
Person L's circumstance or character is not satisfactory.
Argument A is not a good argument.

fal•la•cy (f l -s )
n. pl. fal•la•cies
1. A false notion. misconception
2. A statement or an argument based on a false or invalid inference.
3. Incorrectness of reasoning or belief; erroneousness.
4. The quality of being deceptive.

fallacy [ˈfæləsɪ]
n pl -cies
1. an incorrect or misleading notion or opinion based on inaccurate facts or invalid reasoning
2. unsound or invalid reasoning
3. the tendency to mislead
4. (Philosophy / Logic) Logic an error in reasoning that renders an argument logically invalid

FIELDSPORTS, you obviously suffer from a bad case of Argumentum ad Baculum (fear of force):

“The fallacy committed when one appeals to force or the threat of force to bring about the acceptance of a conclusion.
The ad baculum derives its strength from an appeal to human timidity or fear and is a fallacy when the appeal is not logically related to the claim being made. In other words, the emotion resulting from a threat rather than a pertinent reason is used to cause agreement with the purported conclusion of the argument.

The ad baculum contains implicitly or explicitly a threat. Behind this threat is often the idea that in the end, "Might makes right." Threats, per se, however, are not fallacies because they involve behavior, not arguments.

The basis of an ad baculum is the story of Giordano Bruno. Bruno (1548-1600) envisioned a multitude of solar systems in limitless space and believed in the astronomical hypothesis of Copernicus. The Church threatened his life unless he changed his views. Bruno refused to be convinced by the ad baculum as so was burned at the stake in 1600).

Since many threats involve emotional responses, they can be much like the ad populum fallacy. The appeal to the fear of not being accepted as part of a group can often be analyzed as either the ad baculum or thead populum.
Non-fallacious examples of the ad baculum: the appeal is not irrelevant when the threat or the force is directly relevant to the conclusion or is, itself, the subject of the argument.
Physical or emotional threats in the nature of directive discourse or commands are not arguments and so are not fallacies”
___
Whereas BLACKCAT, if that were not enough, suffers from Argumentum ad Misericordiam (argument from pity or misery) :

“The fallacy committed when pity or a related emotion such as sympathy or compassion is appealed to for the sake of getting a conclusion accepted.

Hence, assent or dissent to a statement or an argument is sought on the basis of an irrelevant appeal to pity. In other words, pity, or the related emotion is not the subject or the conclusion of the argument.

The informal structure of the ad misericordiam usually is something like this:

Person L argues statement p or argument A.
L deserves pity because of circumstance y.
Circumstance y is irrelevant to p or A.
Statement p is true or argument A is good.

Related emotions include sympathy, love, regard, mercy, condolence, and compassion. Occasionally, an occurrence of a fallacy can be correctly analyzed as either the ad populum or the ad misericordiam fallacy since these fallacies overlap in their appeal.

Non-fallacious uses of the ad misericordiam include arguments where the appeal to pity or a related emotion is the subject of the argument or is a pertinent or germane reason for acceptance of the conclusion.

THENEWME, anytime I read any of your posts, I suffer from overwhelming nausea - what does pharma shills the likes of you recommend for nausea ? That’s all you are a bigpharma shill wishing he/ she was some FDA rep (as a FDA insider myself, I can tell you that you are not one of us).

Trying to make good grades on this site hoping that ORAC will notice you ? You did fail miserably on BCO

SOYABEAN, pardon my saying so, but you appear very gullible drinking at thenewme’s fountain of delusions & hallucinations or is this your way of scoring points by emulating BC/TNM to make it into the pseudoskeptics league, a new vocation perhaps ?

JERGENS & SUSIEQ (AFriend) you are sooo transparent LoL). Can you clap harder, you are not scoring any points here. Plus, I can’t hear you !!

The SCIENCE-TOLOGISTS (known as the quackpots) Index

1.A -5 point starting credit.
2.1 point for every statement that is widely agreed on to be false.
3.2 points for every statement that is clearly vacuous.
4.3 points for every statement that is logically inconsistent.
5.5 points for each such statement that is adhered to despite careful correction.
6.5 points for each word in all capital letters (except for those with defective keyboards).
7.5 points for each mention of "Einstien", "Hawkins" or "Feynmann".
8.10 points for each claim that quantum mechanics is fundamentally misguided (without good evidence).
9.10 points for pointing out that you have gone to school, as if this were evidence of sanity.
10.10 points for beginning the description of your theory by saying how long you have been working on it. (10 more for emphasizing that you worked on your own.)
11.10 points for mailing your theory to someone you don't know personally and asking them not to tell anyone else about it, for fear that your ideas will be stolen.
12.10 points for offering prize money to anyone who proves and/or finds any flaws in your theory.
13.10 points for each new term you invent and use without properly defining it.
14.10 points for each statement along the lines of "I'm not good at math, but my theory is conceptually right, so all I need is for someone to express it in terms of equations".
15.10 points for arguing that a current well-established theory is "only a theory", as if this were somehow a point against it.
16.10 points for arguing that while a current well-established theory predicts phenomena correctly, it doesn't explain "why" they occur, or fails to provide a "mechanism".
17.10 points for claiming that your work is on the cutting edge of a "paradigm shift".
18.20 points for complaining about this index. (saying that "Einstein" is misspelled in item 8.)
19.20 points for suggesting that you deserve a Nobel prize.
20. 20 points for each favorable comparison of yourself to Newton

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0508145/

No amount of kindness will stop the nasty nasty BLACKCAT/THENEWME in its tracks – not unlike ‘famous’ shooters, it uses words to shoot people down in the hope of killing spirit and body.

BC/TNM has lost its soul and its main goal is to bring a targeted group of human beings down into its crawling space. It is full of hatred and rage spewing, spitting and vomiting all over the place

I WILL NOT USE KINDNESS ON YOU – YOU DESERVE ETERNAL HELL

The rest of us humans exercise self-control where you have absolutely none. No boundaries whatsoever. A loose cannon. I really hope you were not allowed to bear even one child, as no child deserves to have you as parent.

Go on, the more you post, the more the world can see how much of a vile, poisonous piece of work you are. Hopefully, you get caught BEFORE you go out buying live bullets.

You’re obviously attempting to achieve fame and recognition by posting your venom on the internet, a very weak and feeble attempt for which only the least educated will fall for and support you.

To all the other pseudoskeptics, if I were you, I would totally disassociate from the vultures here and on BCO should you wish to preserve some kind of dignity and a somewhat respectable reputation

If ORAC has any sense at all and is not parading as BC/TNM, he will permanently ban BC/TNM without delay if he wishes to keep his ‘house’ clean and critter free

https://www.google.ca/search?q=critter&start=10&hl=en&sa=N&prmd=imvnsa&…

IPT? Leah, do you actually believe this stuff? There are so many inaccuracies on the page you linked to that I don't know where to start. It looks like it was written to spund plausible to people who don't know much about human physiology and biochemistry. Just one example is the claim that cancer cells, "depend on glucose so much that unlike normal cells, they actually make and release their own insulin". Only a tiny minority of tumors produce insulin (or substances that act like insulin), but even if that were true, if cancer cells make their own insulin so they can greedily steal glucose from normal cells, doesn't giving IV insulin just help them even more?

To me IPT sounds like a recipe for making all your tumor cells resistant to multiple chemotherapy drugs at once, assuming you don't suffer brain damage or death from an insulin overdose. There is no evidence that IPT is effective, and the explanations given by practitioners don't make much sense. Here's what the American Cancer Society says about IPT. They conclude:

Despite supporters' claims that insulin potentiation therapy has been well researched, no scientific studies that show safety and effectiveness have been published in available peer-reviewed journals. These claims cannot be verified.

By Krebiozen (not verified) on 29 Jul 2012 #permalink

That was my 2 minutes worth way way down there at your level

Now, on with Pseudoskepticism 101 (Con'td)

Pseudoskepticism (cont’d)
"Debate Closed" Mentality

Since Pseudoskeptics have by their nature made up their minds on any question long before the evidence is in, they are not interested in participating in what could become an involved, drawn-out debate. On the contrary, their concern is with preserving their own understanding of how nature works, so discordant evidence has to be disposed of as quickly as possible. When sound evidence to that end is unavailable, anything that sufficiently resembles it will suffice. Pseudoskeptics like to jump to conclusions quickly - when the conclusion is their own, pre-conceived one. Once the pseudoskeptical community has agreed on an "explanation" that is thought to debunk claim X, that explanation then becomes enshrined in pseudoskeptical lore and is repeated ad infinitum and ad nauseam in the pseudoskeptical literature. Subsequent rebuttals are ignored, as is new data that support claims X. Examples are legion.
1) Overreaching and Armchair Quarterbacking

Faced with contradictory or inconclusive evidence, the skeptic will only say that the claim has not been proven at this time, and gives the claimant the benefit of the doubt. The pseudoskeptic will make the (incorrect) counterclaim that the original claim has been disproved by the evidence (and usually follow up with generous amounts of name-calling and other extra-scientific arguments discussed below).

This distinction between simply not accepting a claim and making a counterclaim is important because it shifts the burden of proof. The true skeptic does not have to prove anything, because she is simply unconvinced of the validity of an extraordinary claim.
Pseudoskeptics, on the other hand, making the claim that the extraordinary phenomenon only appears to be extraordinary, and has a conventional explanation, have to bear a burden of proof of their own. Do they? The general answer is no. Most of the professional pseudoskeptics engage in mere 'armchair quarterbacking', conducting no research of their own.
2) Confusing Assumptions with Findings

Pseudoskeptics like to claim that the assumptions underlying modern science are empirical facts that science has proved. For example, the foundational assumption of neuroscience, that the functioning of the brain (and, therefore, the mind) is explainable in terms of classical physics as the interaction of neurons, is said to be a scientific fact that is proved by neuroscience, despite the embarrassing and long-standing failure of this assumption to explain the anomaly of consciousness.

In a recent BBC program on homeopathy Walter Stewart (the same one who was part of the Nature team that visited Benveniste in his laboratory in 1988) is quoted on the subject of homeopathic dilutions:

Science has through many, many different experiments shown that when a drug works it's always through the way the molecule interacts with the body and, so the discovery that there's no molecules means absolutely there's no effect.

But science has shown no such thing. That the functioning of biological organisms is reducible to the physical interaction of molecules is not the result of decades of bio-molecular research, it is the assumption underlying this research. The fact that homeopathy confounds that assumption refutes the latter, not the former.

3) If it was true, there is no way that science could have missed it!

This is a variation of the end of science argument - since science already knows everything and does not recognize the unconventional phenomenon, it cannot be real. Besides being based on a mere belief - that science has discovered everything there is to know - this argument ignores the nature of human perception. Even scientists tend to see only what they want to see, and that is how phenomena that we find completely obvious today, such as Wegener's plate tectonics - look how South America fits into Africa! - went unnoticed for a long time, and were violently opposed when they were finally pointed out. As Arthur C. Clarke put it:
It is really quite amazing by what margins competent but conservative scientists and engineers can miss the mark, when they start with the preconceived idea that what they are investigating is impossible. When this happens, the most well-informed men become blinded by their prejudices and are unable to see what lies directly ahead of them.

True skeptics appreciate that the principal flaw of human perception - seeing what one wants to see - can afflict conventional as well as unconventional scientists. Their opinions are moderated by the humbling realization that today's scientific orthodoxy began as yesterday's scientific heresy; as the December 2002 editorial of Scientific American puts it:
All scientific knowledge is provisional. Everything that science "knows", even the most mundane facts and long-established theories, is subject to re-examination as new information comes in.

4) Assuming False Scientific Authority

Many high-profile pseudoskeptics pass judgement based on scientific expertise they don't have.
5) Double Standards of Acceptable Proof and Ad-Hoc Hypotheses

The true skeptic will apply her skepticism equally to conventional and unconventional claims, and even to skepticism itself. In particular, the true skeptic recognizes an ad-hoc hypothesis regardless of the source. The pseudoskeptic, on the other hand, reserves her critical facilities for unconventional claims only.
So pseudoskeptics often fail to apply their skepticism to conventional wisdom. But worse yet, when confronted with evidence of unusual phenomena, pseudoskepticism itself will take refuge to outrageously arbitrary ad hoc hypotheses: swamp gas, duck butts and temperature inversions can create the appearance of flying vehicles in the sky, pranksters are able to produce elaborate geometrical designs in crops within seconds, in complete darkness, and without leaving footprints (but somehow changing the microscopic structure of the crops in a manner consistent with microwave heating), and shadows can conspire to make a mesa on Mars look like a face, an illusion that persists under different viewing angles and lighting conditions.

Critics of Alternative and Complementary Medicine (such as self-appointed "quackwatcher" Stephen Barrett) habitually employ this double standard. They will piously denounce alternative medical procedures for not having 100% cure rates, but ignore the fact that the side effects of conventional drugs kill over 100,000 in the US alone each year. They will condescendingly point to a lack of proper (i.e. double-blind) scientific studies supporting certain alternative procedures and simultaneously ignore the fact that many conventional surgical procedures and drug protocols are equally unproven by the same standard. Worse yet, they will hold alternative medicine responsible for every case of malpractice that has ever been committed in its name, but they would not dream of applying the same standard to conventional medical practice.
6) Responding to Claims that were not made aka Demolishing Straw Men
7) Technically Correct Pseudo-Refutation

Pseudoskeptics are fond of arguing that hundreds of respectable scientists believe that a certain idea is bunk, and therefore, it must be. When one points out to them that many scientific breakthroughs were ridiculed and dismissed by the scientific establishment of the time, they retort that not every idea that has been ridiculed or dismissed turned out to be correct.
Correct, but completely irrelevant, because it responds to an argument that was not made. The argument was not that ridicule or dismissal by scientific experts is sufficient grounds for accepting an unorthodox claim, simply that it is insufficient grounds for rejecting it.
The pseudoskeptic's knee-jerk dismissal of unorthodox claimants as "pseudo-scientists", "fringe-scientists" and "crackpots" simply carries no evidentiary weight one way or another. In his skeptical zeal to convict Milton of blundering in the realm of logic, Carroll commits a much more elementary error than selective reasoning: He responds to an argument that is not being made. Milton's argument is not "they laughed at Galileo, therefore every unconventional claimant is right", it is merely "they laughed at Galileo, therefore unconventional claimants cannot be presumed wrong."

8) Making criticisms that apply equally to conventional and unconventional research.

Once Pseudoskepticism 101 is fully integrated, the avid pseudoskeptics are asked to join the select Sciencetologists

“PATHOLOGICAL SCIENCE is the process in science in which "people are tricked into false results ... by subjective effects, wishful thinking or threshold interactions". The term was first used by Irving Langmuir, Nobel Prize-winning chemist, during a 1953 colloquium at the Knolls Research Laboratory.
Pseudoskepticism (pathological skepticism) is closed mindedness with deception: it is an irrational prejudice against new ideas which masquerades as proper skepticism. A person under the sway of pathological skepticism will claim to support reason and the scientific worldview while concealing their strongly negative emotional response against any questioning of contemporary accepted knowledge.
THE PRIMARY SYMPTOMS OF PATHOLOGICAL SKEPTICISM ARE THE PRESENCE OF SCORN, SNEERING, AND RIDICULE IN PLACE OF A REASONED DEBATE. IN THEIR ARGUMENTS, PSEUDOSKEPTICS WILL FREELY EMPLOY LOGICAL FALLACIES, RHETORIC AND NUMEROUS DISHONEST STRATEGIES OF PERSUASION WHICH ARE INTENDED MORE TO SWAY AN AUDIENCE RATHER THAN TO EXPOSE TRUTH.
Logical Fallacies are errors in logical arguments which are independent of the truth of the premises. It is a flaw in the structure of an argument as opposed to an error in its premises. Recognizing logical fallacies in practical arguments may be difficult since arguments are often structured using rhetorical patterns that obscure the logical connections between assertions.
Logical fallacies may also exploit the emotions or intellectual or psychological weaknesses of the interlocutors. Psychological ploys such as use of power relationships between proposer and interlocutor, humorous criticism, appeals to patriotism and morality, appeals to ego etc., to establish necessary intermediate (explicit or implicit) premises for an argument. Indeed, logical fallacies very often lay in unstated assumptions or implied premises in arguments that are not always obvious at first glance.
By definition, arguments with logical fallacies are invalid, but they can often be cast in such a way that they fit a valid argument form. The challenge to the interlocutor is, of course, to discover the false premise which makes the argument unsound.
The term pseudoskeptic is most commonly encountered in the form popularized by Marcello Truzzi, where he defined pseudoskeptics as those who take the negative rather than an agnostic position but still call themselves 'skeptics'. Prior to Truzzi, the term "Pseudo-skepticism" has occasionally been used in 19th and early 20th century philosophy. The term pseudoskepticism was characterized by Truzzi in 1987, in response to skeptic groups who applied the label of "Pseudoscience" to fields which Truzzi thought might be better described as protoscience””
____
“A person who imitates those who habitually doubt, question or suspend judgement on matters generally accepted by the basic use of the denial of facts presented and enhanced by the use of tactics such as:
. insults
. false or non valid data
. outright lies
. willful spread of misinformation and disinformation
. altering true facts to suit their purpose
. and the general belief of a lie being told enough times that it will become the truth.
Pseudo-Skeptics who have beliefs different than other Pseudo-Skeptics will rush to the aid of their brethren, often citing items they consider as true but which are not. They depend heavily upon personal attacks, falsifying data, improperly presenting data, and implying things they later deny implying.
They often segregate into cult-like groups, and each group targets a particular person or thing as their specialty for their attacks. Some PS Cults flock to a person or group and take whatever that person or group says as if it was word of God himself.
Most of all, the Pseudo-Skeptics will not accept the rights of others to believe as they wish or talk on the subjects they wish to speak on. When they are told they are wrong, they immediately blame some believer for beginning the whole mess.
These people live their lives in the Witch-hunter or Spanish Inquisition mentality. They seek out those who believe otherwise to denounce them as frauds and figuratively burn them at the stake.
Most Pseudo-Skeptics are of low mentality or of a singular mentality. They may be experts in one field, but know very little about anything else that pertains to the real world. They often have comprehension problems for anything outside their particular field of expertise.
The male Pseudo-Skeptic is the chest beater of the group. Their methods are easily seen and defended against. They are also often the more immature of the species. The female Pseudo-Skeptic also can be a chest beater (which is fun to watch) but more often the most intelligent of the group. They are also more cunning and better speakers. They are also the most dangerous, for they usually resort to the `Pity the poor girl' methodology when their attacks are returned. They usually know how to plead for sympathy.
Beware the Pseudo-skeptics - their only intent is to disrupt and belittle.
There is no easy way to beat them, the best is to lead them along so that they publically beat themselves

CONCLUSION:
With the right amount of rope, the Pseudo-Skeptics are more than willing to hang themselves”

@Leah - can you explain why places that give IPT charge so much. If it's a lower dose wouldn't it be cheaper? It is obviously a scam - big promises, really big money.

"Most people in her position would have either just tried some alternative do-it-yourself treatment or did standard chemo…and we all know how those stories usually end."

The same way yours and ours will all end.......some day.

Please provide any verifiable information you have that alternative treatments are any more successful at prolonging life than the numerous and varied AI's and chemo therapies.
What is your definition of "thriving"?

Oh wait I forgot, you don't answer questions, you just regurgitate more bile and nonsensical claims with no basis in fact.

@Leah, er, ah, Joy

Can you please answer the questions presented to you?

Since Leah has mentioned intravenous ascorbate (vitamin C) and since ascorbate is a particular interest of mine I thought I would add a few thoughts. There have been some intriguing results using high doses of ascorbate in cancer, mostly IV, but also some equivocal and some negative studies. I would like to see more clinical trials of IV ascorbate in cancer, or even some properly recorded results of IV ascorbate cancer treatments in alternative health clinics as this seems to be a commonly used treatment. Since ascorbate can act as a pro-oxidant at high doses and also is associated with oxalate renal calculi formation and even renal failure, there is a possibility of serious adverse effects.

Digging around the Clinical Trials website there seem to be a lot of incomplete, unpublished or suspended studies looking at ascorbate and cancer, which suggests to me that the results have not been promising. This treatment is unproven, is possibly beneficial at best, and possibly dangerous at worst. The study Leah referred to is, I believe <a href="http://www.translational-medicine.com/content/9/1/25"this one, which concludes:

While ongoing clinical trials of i.v. AA for cancer may or may not meet the bar to grant this modality a place amongst the recognized chemotherapeutic agents, it is critical that we collect as much biological data as possible, given the possibility of this agent to be a wonderful adjuvant therapy.

By Krebiozen (not verified) on 29 Jul 2012 #permalink

@Krebiozen
Orac has blogged about IV Vitamin C (I'm too lazy to look for it). His conclusion - "a long run for a short slide".

By Militant Agnostic (not verified) on 29 Jul 2012 #permalink

Militant Agnostic,
Yup, it's a maybe at best, and certainly not a proven substitute for real medical care.

By Krebiozen (not verified) on 29 Jul 2012 #permalink

IV or high dosage vitamin C is a cherished therapy in woo-topia: for cancer, HIV, you name it.

By Denice Walter (not verified) on 29 Jul 2012 #permalink

Maud's (boudiicca) off her antipsychotics again and needs to be 5150ed This is getting really old. I hear that she is now in need of five point restraints and a simple O2 face mask (not hooked up) as she has now graduated to being a biter and a spitter. She is infected with really gross festering contagious cooties and universal precautions have to be taken with her.

Of course we will see her back on the streets in 72 hours. Sad really, that the only options available to her are a revolving door at the county jail or the county psych ward,

By Black-cat (not verified) on 29 Jul 2012 #permalink

I'm 100% confident that should any of you need chemo again, you all will be looking for Dr. Lodi's number. That’s if you can afford his rates. He and many alternative/integrative doctors are known for extending the lives of Stage 4 patients who have been sent home to die. Allopathic doctors are such losers. How the hell do you give up on your patients at a time when they need you most?????

So as long as MOs keep carelessly poisoning people, alternative/integrative doctors can charge a high price for IPT. While it isn't used in conventional medicine because medical politics, dictated of course by big pharma’s interests, discourages its use, it’s a very effective, nontoxic approach that more and more integrative doctors are using on their patients. Therefore, it’s all about supply and demand. Over 300 clinics around the world use it. If IPT didn’t work they’d be out of business instead of growing.

By integrating IPT into a protocol that includes a super healthy individualized nutritional regimen to heal the body, some integrative doctors are able to heal up to 60% of their terminally-ill patients. Obviously, this is because the IPT protocol not only kill cancer cells in a sensible fashion, but also detoxifies the body and strengthens immune system, which are things conventional onc s know nothing about.

@Militant Agnostic, you said [“Orac has blogged about IV Vitamin C (I’m too lazy to look for it). His conclusion – “a long run for a short slide”.]

That’s the problem with you people. You're too damn lazy to look for information on your own and you rely on Orac to do all your thinking for you. I feel so sorry for you--I'm posting out of pity.

@Boudicca thanks for your very informative posts ".Most Pseudo-Skeptics are of low mentality or of a singular mentality. They may be experts in one field, but know very little about anything else that pertains to the real world. They often have comprehension problems for anything outside their particular field of expertise." I seriously wonder if this is a mental disorder that can be helped.

@leah

Project much?

BTW, thanks for your great example of Dunning -Kreuger.

@leah - I can bet you that most of those clinics are located in countries with little, if any, oversight of the medical industry in their country. The sham clinics pushing these types of "alternative treatments" get an unfortunate pass because of money - money they bring in from unfortunate "medical tourists" that can be used to grease the wheels of the local bureaucracy to look the other way.

If "Big Pharma" actually existed as a world-wide conspiracy, don't you think they'd have the power to shut these places down? Or better yet, if it is all about the money, why wouldn't they quickly adopt these "treatments" where they could charge tens, if not thousands of dollars - keep patients alive & still have the ability to treat them (and charge them) for other things down the road.

These types of conspiracy theories aren't even internally consistent, much less externally.....if it is all about the money, there is no reason in the world for any treatment to be suppressed - because marketing departments are wonderful things & you can make even the mediocre look good (at least for a while).

Unfortunately Leah, in most of the industrialized world, we actually expect, no demand, that our medical treatments have actual tests done and published, and replicated to show their effectiveness. Information is put into the public domain for scrutiny - you do know that most real (and I use that to differentiate between the sham drugs and treatments out there) drugs and treatments that go through clinical trials never even pass Stage 1, right? Even fewer make it through to human testing, and even then, maybe one out of 100 or 1 out of 1000 actually make it to market.

Somehow, every single woo-tastic, flavor of the week, treatment for whatever (Cancer, autism, HIV, etc) seems to have no trouble being released....of course, when you don't have to actually prove that it works or be held accountable should it not work, it tends to streamline the process.

Again, your conspiracy theories don't hold water - if there was money to be made, you don't think these companies would be all over it? But darn, you know, we actually hold them to a standard by which they have to prove the efficacy of their products......something you can't do with the crap you throw around here.

No system is perfect & they don't always get it right, but it is sure better than the "free-for-all" that you and your ilk are pushing....

@Leah - I can guarantee you that should I need chemo again I will NEVER see Lodi. The guy is a quack who prays on the emotions of people to steal their money.

Cancer is what ails me...not stupidity.

Ultimatum question time, Boudicca.

If

6) Responding to Claims that were not made aka Demolishing Straw Men

is the action of a pseduoskeptic, how come we have NOT single out your compatriot Leah for doing exactly that, admitting that she made up the straw man "chemo nourishes every cell in the body" because Protocel can only look good next to imaginary alternatives?

If you do not answer the question within your next three comments, whether on this thread or any other, it will be taken as a positive admission that you never subject alternative medicine and its advocates to the scrutiny and oppobrium you generate for mainstream medicine, and that this constitutes a double standard.

We don't have to take that approach with most people who comment here, but then, most people who comment here do not dump eighteen screens' worth of ranting (most of it copy-pasted) into the comment thread in a space somewhat under 75 minutes. You did. This is the consequence.

By Antaeus Feldspar (not verified) on 30 Jul 2012 #permalink

Obviously, this is because the IPT protocol not only kill cancer cells in a sensible fashion, but also detoxifies the body and strengthens immune system, which are things conventional onc s know nothing about.

Obviously? Giving enough insulin to induce hypoglycemia, then giving cytotoxic chemotherapy drugs, "detoxifies the body and strengthens immune system"? That makes no sense at all. It seems to be you and Boudicca who have serious comprehension problems. The more comments you both post here the more concerned I am about your mental health. Seriously.

By Krebiozen (not verified) on 30 Jul 2012 #permalink

@Black-cat @1am

I think you're crossing the line. SBM people tend to avoid talking about the personal details of someone's life and stick to arguing the facts and data. Whilst I'm "on your side", this comment for me, suggests you need to step back and re-evaluate your tactics. You're stooping to ad homenims. (By the way, I've read pretty much every comment, so this is saying something. You've come close before, but this one goes over it for me)

I can understand the frustration, but you're just adding fuel to the fire.