Yes yes, one of our favorite subjects: magical healing and other fairy stories! From a Telegraph article by a Ms Anna Tyzack entitled: “Complementary medicine – does it work?“. Of course we already know the answer for a large number of modalities that fall under the umbrella term “Complementary”. This is a just dose of the same old really bad reasoning, which over the years has allowed all sorts of pseudoscience and crank degrees to creep into academia, national health systems, etc.
From “Talk Reason” and Michael Luciano I became aware of how the Discovery Institute (DI) -one of the most visible Intelligent Design (ID) think tanks and propaganda machine, defines Intelligent Design. The Discovery Institute and other ID proponents have been trying to persuade us that ID is really a scientific theory -nevermind they make no testable predictions and only rely on negative evidence. Instead of tackling this claim (which has been discarded a million times before) Luciano pretty much lets the DI “scientists” demolish it themselves!
“This house believes that complementary and alternative medicine does more harm than good”. That was the motion of yesterday’s debate, as proposed by Simon Singh. Supporting him was Prof. Michael Baum; opposing him were Prof. George Lewith and Prof. David Peters. Get ready for a debate high on fallacies, low on logic, and with hot tempers!
Dr Mike Egnor is a neurosurgeon, famous for his notoriously fallacious arguments and bad logic when trying to support the fairy tale that is intelligent design. He contributes to a ridiculous blog in which he often comments on news around evolution -a well of fallacies, misunderstandings of even basic evolutionary concepts, and just plain silliness. Actually, it is not even a blog: Egnor doesn’t allow comments on his posts, probably in fear of armies of people ridiculing him for his outrageously stupid way of “thinking”. Steven Novella has exposed Egnor a number of times already but he just doesn’t seem to notice… Everyone else though, has already acknowledged the vacuity in his argumentation… The term “Egnorance” was promptly and rightfully coined and is in wide use today.
Carl Sagan is no longer here to take on the pseudoscientific charlatans that seem to have flooded the web lately. But thankfully, a significant and constantly rising number of skeptics and rational thinkers are trying to counter the waves of nonsense. Two such prominent figures in the blogosphere (and outside) are Andy Lewis and Prof. David Colquhoun.
A few days ago I received this comical comment on my post “This is what happens with the lying anti-vaccination campaigns“. This is a perfect demonstration of what I have been saying all along: that those who promote the anti-vaccination propaganda are usually stupid!
Everyone has a beef. Everyone has a problem with something or someone. Some beefs are normal, or rational, like being annoyed when someone tests your resolve to situations evolving near the border of acceptable social behaviour (the common “I – eat – a – smelly – tuna – sandwich – in – your – face – while – packed – like – sardines – in – the – morning – rush – hour – tube” situation for example). But some beefs are baseless and irrational. Lets have a look at those beefs and their proponent characteristics -because they make for funnier writing!
Common Fallacies of Logic and Rhetoric as listed by Carl Sagan