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Old 06-14-2009, 04:20 PM   #1
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The debate over "self-help" and other alt medicine

Anyone else strolled by the "self-help" section of a modern bookstore lately?

It's simply stunning to me how much is being published by authors with no real qualifications other than a self-proclaimed expertise in helping us figure out the mysteries of life. These authors, practitioners of new science, etc. assure us that they have boiled these mysteries down into a book, a Power Point preso or a certain kind of body massage.

IMO, hogwash.

Psychiatry and neuroscience are legitimate fields that require substantive training. A couple seminars and brochureware do not qualify people to practice in these fields, especially on others who may have a need for real medical care.

Some resources making these and similar points below.

Agree or disagree?


http://www.quackwatch.com/

http://www.selfhelpfraud.com/Home_Page.html

http://counsellingresource.com/featu.../15/self-help/

http://www.amazon.com/Sham-Self-Help.../dp/1400054095
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Old 06-14-2009, 06:31 PM   #2
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The Guardian's science section has a column called Bad Science, which attacks these quacks on a regular basis. It's at http://www.guardian.co.uk/science/series/badscience.

The whole thing came in for some extremely bad press here in Australia a few weeks ago, after a little girl died because her parents continued to stick to homeopathic treatment for an incredibly bad case of eczema, and wouldn't take her to hospital for proper treatment.

Quote:
Parents guilty of manslaughter over daughter's eczema death

A couple whose baby daughter died after they treated her with homeopathic remedies instead of conventional medicine have been found guilty of manslaughter.

Gloria Thomas died aged nine months after spending more than half her life with eczema.

The skin condition wore down her natural defences and left her completely vulnerable when she developed an eye infection that killed her within days of developing.

Thomas Sam, 42, a homeopath, and Manju Sam, 37, of Earlwood, Sydney, were charged with manslaughter by gross criminal negligence.
http://www.smh.com.au/national/paren...0605-bxvx.html
It's an appalling story.

Mind you, apparently coconut oil cures cancer. Benz Rider told me.
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Old 06-14-2009, 06:41 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hkmb View Post
The Guardian's science section has a column called Bad Science, which attacks these quacks on a regular basis. It's at http://www.guardian.co.uk/science/series/badscience.

The whole thing came in for some extremely bad press here in Australia a few weeks ago, after a little girl died because her parents continued to stick to homeopathic treatment for an incredibly bad case of eczema, and wouldn't take her to hospital for proper treatment.



It's an appalling story.

Mind you, apparently coconut oil cures cancer. Benz Rider told me.
WTH! Coconut oil cures cancer! Stop the damn press!
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Old 06-14-2009, 06:47 PM   #4
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WTH! Coconut oil cures cancer! Stop the damn press!
Yes. Apparently (and don't tell anyone I told you this, or Opus Dei and the Illuminati will come after both of us), cancer treatment is just a plot to make the doctors rich. According to the wisdom of benz rider, all you need is to drink coconut oil every day.

There was coconut milk in my Thai green curry last night, and I didn't develop cancer overnight (to my knowledge). QED.
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Old 06-15-2009, 11:05 AM   #5
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Because people are suckers.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MzjoKhBklYg
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Old 06-15-2009, 07:29 PM   #6
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Mind you, apparently coconut oil cures cancer. Benz Rider told me.
Oh man, I remember the "starve it" nonsense but I missed the whole coconut oil bit. What a clown.


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Because people are suckers.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MzjoKhBklYg
Thanks for that excellent link. Don't know much about those guys or their show, but looks like my kind of entertainment. The guy willing to pay $200 for the useless jacket was classic.

Here's another aspect of this movement: the ever annoying diet craze. How many different diets do we need? Are these things effective or even safe? What are the qualifications of the creators?

I think I will need to ponder these questions over a fattening, carb-loaded beer immediately!
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Old 06-15-2009, 08:58 PM   #7
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I will chime in on this one, theyre are some companies that have factual reserch behind them such as youngliving.us . Personaly I find that theyre producs work great. The essential oils although may seem stupid at first actualy work. I do go to a doctor like a normal person but for stuff like a cold I self medicate myself with theese products first.
I start my morning of with this as well.
http://www.ningxiared.com/
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Old 06-15-2009, 09:48 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by Glasgow Gold View Post
Anyone else strolled by the "self-help" section of a modern bookstore lately?

It's simply stunning to me how much is being published by authors with no real qualifications other than a self-proclaimed expertise in helping us figure out the mysteries of life. These authors, practitioners of new science, etc. assure us that they have boiled these mysteries down into a book, a Power Point preso or a certain kind of body massage.

IMO, hogwash.

Psychiatry and neuroscience are legitimate fields that require substantive training. A couple seminars and brochureware do not qualify people to practice in these fields, especially on others who may have a need for real medical care.

Some resources making these and similar points below.

Agree or disagree?


http://www.quackwatch.com/

http://www.selfhelpfraud.com/Home_Page.html

http://counsellingresource.com/featu.../15/self-help/

http://www.amazon.com/Sham-Self-Help.../dp/1400054095
What makes you think that just because they aren't schooled in Psychiatry and neuroscience that it doesn't qualify them to write a self help book?

I've read quite a number of these types of books from people who you'd think have no major accomplishments. They certainly don't have Ph.D's or Masters in the aforementioned fields, but their books are fantastic and quite helpful if you are attentive and keep your mind open.

I particularly like OG Mandino and Aubrey Andelin. Both great authors with no major accredited schooling. I highly suggest reading their books.
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Old 06-15-2009, 10:24 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Glasgow Gold View Post
Anyone else strolled by the "self-help" section of a modern bookstore lately?

It's simply stunning to me how much is being published by authors with no real qualifications other than a self-proclaimed expertise in helping us figure out the mysteries of life. These authors, practitioners of new science, etc. assure us that they have boiled these mysteries down into a book, a Power Point preso or a certain kind of body massage.

IMO, hogwash.

Psychiatry and neuroscience are legitimate fields that require substantive training. A couple seminars and brochureware do not qualify people to practice in these fields, especially on others who may have a need for real medical care.

Some resources making these and similar points below.

Agree or disagree?


http://www.quackwatch.com/

http://www.selfhelpfraud.com/Home_Page.html

http://counsellingresource.com/featu.../15/self-help/

http://www.amazon.com/Sham-Self-Help.../dp/1400054095
i think a lot of this stems from the dr. phil type BS shows. pseudo science at
it's best. solving issues in 45 minutes isn't.....solving issues.
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Old 06-16-2009, 12:09 AM   #10
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What makes you think that just because they aren't schooled in Psychiatry and neuroscience that it doesn't qualify them to write a self help book?
For the same reason you don't want a janitor performing your brain surgery!

Seriously, qualifications exist for a reason. We take investment advice from CFA/CFP types because skill will be more likely to make you money. We hire engineers to build complex structures because we don't want them to crumble when the wind blows. We take legal advice from people who are actually members of the bar because capable lawyers will be more likely to keep us out of trouble.

Now, I get that some self help media is pretty harmless. The auto repair guides for a '85 Honda sold at auto parts stores are a form of "self-help." And, I can't speak to the authors you mention (I can't honestly say that I plan to check out their stuff).

But, I'm concerned that more and more people are allowing themselves to be "worked on" psychologically by the unlicensed, medicated by practitioners having no knowledge of medicine and...well...being sold magnets that have been demagnetized!

To each his own, but feels to me like this is not such a great movement.

What is it specifically about the books you read that you feel you get out of them? Do they solve a problem, develop a skill, provide a kind of spiritual inspiration?
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Old 06-16-2009, 12:19 AM   #11
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And these books are different from the Bible, Koran, Talmud etc. in what way? Point being, people will believe anything they want to. I cringe everytime someone tries to sell me on some homeophathic/herbal/environmental remedy du jour that has "changed their life".
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Old 06-16-2009, 01:20 AM   #12
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For the same reason you don't want a janitor performing your brain surgery!

Seriously, qualifications exist for a reason. We take investment advice from CFA/CFP types because skill will be more likely to make you money. We hire engineers to build complex structures because we don't want them to crumble when the wind blows. We take legal advice from people who are actually members of the bar because capable lawyers will be more likely to keep us out of trouble.
Actually I don't take investment advice from anyone but those who have actually succeeded financially, ironically enough...none of them are CFA/CFPs. They themselves built successful and multimillion dollar businesses, and of which they themselves didn't take advice of CFA/CFP who have no actual business experience to speak of.

I want my doctors to be trained, and I agree we should have trained engineers and builders, but that doesn't mean you or I couldn't write a self-help book and not be qualified to write it. If you personally have overcome financial, personal, and marital problems than it more than qualifies you to write a book that could even help just one person.

Quote:
Now, I get that some self help media is pretty harmless. The auto repair guides for a '85 Honda sold at auto parts stores are a form of "self-help." And, I can't speak to the authors you mention (I can't honestly say that I plan to check out their stuff).

But, I'm concerned that more and more people are allowing themselves to be "worked on" psychologically by the unlicensed, medicated by practitioners having no knowledge of medicine and...well...being sold magnets that have been demagnetized!
Honestly...its too bad you don't seem to want to read or even skim the books written by OG Mandino or Aubrey Andelin, really it is. Neither of them are currently authoring any books. I highly suggest that you even just read the first few pages next time you walk through the bookstore, seriously. Make an effort to either validate or invalidate your views on self-help books.

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To each his own, but feels to me like this is not such a great movement.

What is it specifically about the books you read that you feel you get out of them? Do they solve a problem, develop a skill, provide a kind of spiritual inspiration?
Specifically? Well to start with OG Mandino's book The Choice even being essentially a novel it is quite astute in its observation that most people are reactive instead of proactive. They don't actually live life according to their own choices but someone else's.

Aubrey Andelin's book Man Of Steel and Velvet paints the picture of how a man should act with himself, with other men, and with women in his life. Heck I'll just quote a sentence or two from page 8 in the introduction:

"Our only hope is for men to rise to their feet as real men. But where are the heroes of today? Where is the man who will proclaim, Give me liberty or give me death!? Where are men willing to sacrifice time and energy to rescue a dwindling society?"

I supposed you wouldn't think much of John Maxwell either considering he isn't a physciatrist or neurosurgeon. But alas if you really only want to read books written by people who have a M.D. or Ph.D in physciatry than fine, read Maxwell Maltz M.D.,F.I.C.S and his book Psyco-Cybernetics, but I'll warn you unlike the other books its NOT an easy read, it will take time, and several re-readings to sometimes understand his point.

Either way I'd suggest the book still, it is a great book also. But that doesn't discount anything that anyone else has written.

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And these books are different from the Bible, Koran, Talmud etc. in what way? Point being, people will believe anything they want to. I cringe everytime someone tries to sell me on some homeophathic/herbal/environmental remedy du jour that has "changed their life".
Not as different as you'd think. Does not the Bible talk about family? finances? How to be a man? a woman? Actually the Bible many millions of people widely consider it to be the first self-help book and btw, it is STILL the best selling book of all time, even today.
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Old 06-16-2009, 01:34 AM   #13
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"Our only hope is for men to rise to their feet as real men. But where are the heroes of today? Where is the man who will proclaim, Give me liberty or give me death!? Where are men willing to sacrifice time and energy to rescue a dwindling society?"
Where is he? He's standing outside the Capitol!

Click the image to open in full size.

Sorry.... I couldn't help it.
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Old 06-16-2009, 03:55 AM   #14
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Oh man, I remember the "starve it" nonsense but I missed the whole coconut oil bit. What a clown.
Ah, I'm sorry you missed it. It was some of the finest medical advice I've ever seen. Here you go.

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did you try the Carrot/Apple juice yet?

deeeelicious....and good for you too.

Also, check out the effects of coconut oil on the body's internal organs. you'll be amazed at what it does to cancer cells....eats em' right up...gulp!!!
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Can you elaborate on that one?
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Originally Posted by benz rider View Post
Simply put, cancer cells have a "coating" around them (if you will). that coating is made up of protein. Coconut Oil, when added to your food or drinks and taken regularly, eats that coating away so the bodies natural defense force (the Immune System) can in turn eat up the cancer cells. when you take Immuno-Supressive drugs(Chemo/Radiation) which hampers the Immune Systems ability to fight off such diseases, the disease will takeover and run wild. Cancer is a molecular disease and it must be fought on a molecular level. Scalpels are not the right tools to use.

MD's know this, but telling you this fact jeopardizes their ability to afford that pristine 2009 S500 in the parking garage.
A "coating", if you will.

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Originally Posted by Nola View Post
So how much coconut oil should be added to my food or drink... and for how long? And what type of cancers does it treat? If I have been diagnosed with cancer, should I refuse available treatment and go with the coconut oil treatment?
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1.)no set amount. just a tablespoon or so. it's virtually orderless and only a hint of coconut is detected when you smell your beverage. it's nature's way of creating nutrients we can injest.
2.) take it for as long as you live is what I recommend.
3.) ALL diseases are treatable with coconut oil.
4.). depends on how far your Cancer has gotten and how mentally stable you are to have the will to refuse chemo/radiation. some people refuse Chemo/Radiation no matter how bad it has progressed and showed signs of the cancer reducing to the size of a chick pea and eventually disappear altogether.

this is not rocket science eventhough the MD's will call natural methods of healing heresy to again....protect that bottomline. besides, whose going to pay for all those years of Med School? certainly not the MD, he passes those savings on to the patient.
Yes. The size of a chickpea (a scientific measurement used by oncologists), and then it disappears. Brilliant.

Oh, I miss him.

Last edited by hkmb; 06-16-2009 at 03:57 AM.
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Old 06-16-2009, 06:21 PM   #15
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And these books are different from the Bible, Koran, Talmud etc. in what way? Point being, people will believe anything they want to. I cringe everytime someone tries to sell me on some homeophathic/herbal/environmental remedy du jour that has "changed their life".
Interesting point. So, is this stuff basically "new religion"?

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Make an effort to either validate or invalidate your views on self-help books.
I have, which is why I posted a topic for debate with my opinion. For example, have listened to some Tolle stuff and once attended a Landmark Forum seminar. Whatever you do, don't call them a cult!

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Landmar...ion_litigation

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Ah, I'm sorry you missed it. It was some of the finest medical advice I've ever seen. Here you go.

A "coating", if you will.

Yes. The size of a chickpea (a scientific measurement used by oncologists), and then it disappears. Brilliant.

Oh, I miss him.
My goodness, that's priceless. Who would have thought Benz Rider would illustrate my point so thoroughly with a treatise about coconut oil?!
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Old 06-16-2009, 08:18 PM   #16
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...Interesting point. So, is this stuff basically "new religion"?...!
In a way, yes. They all tell you what/how to do and threaten you with consequences if you don't 'believe'. And just like the religious books they have moments of honest benefit, but that benefit has nothing to do with what they are espousing. It's generally a universal truth like 'life is sacred so don't kill'. With a big enough advertising budget you could sell just about anything.....not to everyone, but enough to have a following.
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Old 06-17-2009, 01:13 AM   #17
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**** the medical inudstry
Aryuvedic miedicin is KNOWN to cure and help allieviate many sypmptoms
There is no money in it, so why would Bif Pharma bother

Aagina, **** obama.
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Old 06-17-2009, 01:14 AM   #18
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http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20090617/...ne_fda_warning

Check out this funny timing. The FDA just issued a warning stating that those Zicam nasal gels can cause a loss of the sense of smell! In a major case of self-ownage, I just used some the other day.

Lucky (or perhaps not) for me, I can still smell the huge pile of garbage that is the $200 million/yr. homeopathic remedy market. As the article explains, these "remedies" (which I will now be smarter to avoid completely) do not go through the ordinary FDA approval process, so it's the triple whammy:

* The junk doesn't work; AND
* It may actually be harmful to you; AND
* You may not find out until it's too late, because it's exempt from FDA testing!
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Old 06-17-2009, 10:52 AM   #19
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Where can I buy some coconut oil?
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Old 06-17-2009, 11:37 AM   #20
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Where can I buy some coconut oil?
Look for it in the same place where you buy Zicam. Err...ummm...used to buy Zicam anyway!
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Old 06-19-2009, 06:30 AM   #21
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Knowledage like anything else can be a pro or a con. I tell pt's that they are their best pt "Advocate"
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Old 02-23-2010, 12:51 AM   #22
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Michael Specter stole my rant, gave it a name and turned it into a book! He addresses more than just homeopathy though, taking shots at the vaccination deniers, the organic food fanatics and others.

Good stuff. Now, where is Tyro to help me get my royalties?!

http://www.amazon.com/Denialism-Irra.../dp/1594202303

Click the image to open in full size.
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Old 02-23-2010, 11:09 AM   #23
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As they always say: "If it sounds too good to be true..... then you must be in the right place at the right time and you'd be a fool not to go for it".

Everybody knows that you CAN cure cancer with regular household products. You CAN make millions by placing classified ads out of your small one bedroom apartment. You CAN learn how the government can pay for your school and give you money to start a business by buying a book from a weird guy with question marks all over his suit.

I don't know why people don't believe this stuff. After all, if it's on TV, it must be true. Right?
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Old 02-23-2010, 11:53 AM   #24
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Just to inject my 2 cents, as if anyone care... There's definitely good and bad in alternative medicine therapies and for me, it's hard to trust the giant corporate medical entities of the world that have been caught time and again falsifying studies and pushing drugs later found to do much more harm or cause death, than help. Avandia anyone? Big Pharma has been caught knowingly selling tainted drugs to protect the bottom line. And when nothing gets done to punish them, you have to wonder how deep the rabbit hole goes.

More and more legitimate studies have shown that there's evidence some of the simplest things do in fact work to cure illnesses because many are deficiency driven. So don't discount some claims which have later been proven 100% true. Scurvy - Vitamin C / Goiter - Iodine / Memory loss - Vitamin B / Rickets and Flu - Vitamin-D and the list goes on and on.

There's no substitute for proper nutrition and exercise. Keep the body running at it's peak and it does what it's supposed to. And that includes fighting off diseases.

Then there's the problem with America's medical association. What they cannot control, they don't approve. Royal Rife was a prime example as is Gerson. Rife was working on a machine to kill any disease through sonic vibrations ... They couldn't get control of his work, so they made him a quack.

50years later, scientists have discovered that certain frequencies, specific for various pathogens ... can kill them without harming the body.

Gerson therapy has been called quackery. HERE in the USA where they refused to do the therapy. In Japan they've now proven it works. A researcher cured his own incurable cancer with the therapy and now clinics for that therapy are opening in Japan.

Meanwhile, we peddle drugs here that simply fight symptoms. There's no money in cures. And those drugs peddaled often have more adverse side effects than there worth.

Then there's that nasty little problem they have called the placebo affect. Turns out as many placebos these days are having the same levels of success as the poisons they want you to take.

Mind over body. Believe it works and it does.

So, is some of it quakery ... sure. These idiots want to make money too. But I wouldn't discount it all as quakery.
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Old 02-23-2010, 01:28 PM   #25
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Just to inject my 2 cents, as if anyone care... There's definitely good and bad in alternative medicine therapies and for me, it's hard to trust the giant corporate medical entities of the world that have been caught time and again falsifying studies and pushing drugs later found to do much more harm or cause death, than help. Avandia anyone? Big Pharma has been caught knowingly selling tainted drugs to protect the bottom line. And when nothing gets done to punish them, you have to wonder how deep the rabbit hole goes.
I'm afraid this line of thinking is Exhibit A for Specter's important book. He gets into the growing paranoia around "big pharma" - a fear which makes very little sense when the alternatives get NO regulation (see, e.g., the Zicam story in this very thread).

You're drawing huge conclusions from a few cases of corporate corruption, even suggesting conspiracies. To the extent this might lead you to make irrational decisions (e.g., not accepting chemo for cancer, not vaccinating your children), it is actually dangerous.
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