"With alternative therapists, when you point out a problem with the evidence, people don’t engage with you about it, or read and reference your work. They get into a huff. They refuse to answer calls or email queries. They wave their hands and mutter sciencey words such as “quantum” and “nano”. They accuse you of being a paid plant from some big pharma conspiracy. a problem with the evidence, They shout, “What about thalidomide, science boy?”, they cry, they call you names, they hold lectures at their trade fairs about how you are a dangerous doctor, they contact and harass your employer, they try to dig up dirt from your personal life, or they actually threaten you with violence (this has all happened to me, and I’m compiling a great collection of stories for a nice documentary, so do keep it coming)."
- From Ben Goldacre's Bad Science blog.
Believe it or not, reading this made me miss my ex-wife, Karine Brunck, and my (former) friends. I've seen it all: divorce, arguments, whisper campaigns - you name it - and all in a defense of nonsense. Every one of them, more than willing to throw common sense, and morality (and me) to the side to cozy up with the out-and-out madness of their own feelings. (Which is really creepy, now that I think about it.)
"But", I can hear you saying, "You're so mean." To which I reply, I call nonsense "nonsense", or madness "madness", and if the shoe fits, wear it. That's not being mean but a clear indication you hate the dictionary:
Words or language having little or no sense or meaning.
Conduct, action, etc., that is senseless, foolish, or absurd.
Impudent, insubordinate, or otherwise objectionable behavior.
Something absurd or fatuous.
Anything of trifling importance or of little or no use.
The quality or condition of being insane.
The quality of being rash and foolish
Don't blame me because you were raised to be a bunch of big New Age babies who can't handle words that apply to you. I even troubled myself to look up "mean" and here is what I found:
Offensive, selfish, or unaccommodating; nasty; malicious.
Small-minded or ignoble.
Penurious, stingy, or miserly.
Inferior in grade, quality, or character.
Low in status, rank, or dignity: mean servitors.
Of little importance or consequence.
Unimposing or shabby.
Small, humiliated, or ashamed.
Informal. in poor physical condition.
Troublesome or vicious; bad-tempered.
Slang. skillful or impressive.
Now, except for the slang term (which is quite nice), I'd say that's a better description of what I, and Ben Goldacre, have recieved from others, than any description of my own actions or words. Am I capable of being pissed off? Of course. But not in defense of madness or nonsense - or my feelings - that's the domain of cultists, alone, and, historically (from Charlie Manson and Jim Jones to the new "Health Food Store" variety) they've all proven more than willing to be mean, vicious, selfish, small-minded, immoral bastards while doing it. Oh, they're such rebels!!
Oh well. Keep this in mind, assholes:
Your ignorant feelings will not protect you.