Friday, September 5, 2008

They're Only Following Orders

"We’ve just been told that the U.S. military, increasingly concerned about the high number of troops from Iraq and Afghanistan diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder and brain injuries, is spending $4 million of our tax dollars on grants to conduct 'clinical studies' on everything from yoga, to reiki, to transcendental meditation. The Department of Defense says it

…supports the use of alternative therapies if they are proved efficacious.

Now, that should mean that the DOD will conduct meticulous tests of these quack notions, then report their discoveries to the world. Why this should cost four million, is far beyond my understanding,..."

-- James Randi, involuntarily making my head hurt, over at the JREF.


  1. Noting that all comments are first 'approved' by the blog author....
    I might have just fallen off the turnip truck, but since research first appeared on the cover of Scientific American in 1970 there has been a boatload of peer reviewed articles on achievements of TM in reducing stress. Those poor folks that have endured bomb blasts at close range surely deserve the best post care we can muster whether it be TM or Bachs Flower Remedies. Sincerely,

  2. Yea, you said it:

    You fell off the turnip truck.

    Why, at this point, you might even be a turnip.

  3. Ah the achievements of TM in reducing stress! A meta-analysis not long ago done in Alberta found that the quality of meditation research(including but not limited to TM) was so poor that little in the way of conclusions can be drawn.

    I believe that petting your dog or cat will have similar effects.

  4. That's one of the things supporters of TM, who scream there's been research that was positive, don't get: most of the research was done by people into TM, and it warps their minds so much they don't know how to do good research. Hell, the first time Deepak Chopra and the Maharishi made it into the Journal of American Medicine they got busted for fraud.

    Why anyone would ever trust their claims after that is still a mystery.