Qualia Soup on Burden of Proof
Posted: 26 April 2012 04:49 AM   [ Ignore ]
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Worth a look!

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Doug

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Posted: 26 April 2012 05:46 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1 ]
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Very well done video. If there was only some way to get it to the people who need to see it so it wasn’t just preaching to the choir

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For every complex problem there is a solution that is simple, obvious,.... and just plain wrong

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Posted: 26 April 2012 06:13 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2 ]
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macgyver - 26 April 2012 05:46 AM

Very well done video. If there was only some way to get it to the people who need to see it so it wasn’t just preaching to the choir

Always the problem, isn’t it?

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El sueño de la razón produce monstruos

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Posted: 26 April 2012 12:40 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 3 ]
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Nice. All completely applicable to non-supernatural claims as well, which is what I stuggle with most of the time. The tactic of assuming that a claim must be accepted by default, or based on the mere belief someone has in it, unless the skeptic can disprove the claim, works all too well in alternative medicine too.

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Posted: 26 April 2012 01:03 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 4 ]
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I’m starting to give up on the ability of people to be rational thinkers. Not completely but every once in a while you just want to bang your head against the wall.

I spent some time last week putting together an article for patients to read about the word “natural”. I get questions on almost a daily basis from patients to the effect of ” Is there something natural I could take for my Blood pressure, cholesterol… fill in the blank.. instead of the medication you want to give me”. I decided it would be a good idea to write something that people could read which would explain how that word has been misused in modern society and that the word natural does not mean a product is any safer or less likely to cause side effects. I can email the article to anyone who wants to read it but it basically spells out a lot of the stuff Mckenzie and I have said here a hundred times in a way that i thought would set off a lightbulb in peoples heads. Well I thought wrong.

A patient asked if I could give him advice about using a natural supplement to prevent hair loss. I researched the supplement and of course found that there was little clinical evidence that it was effective in the application he was hoping to use it for. There are drugs that have been studied for the treatment and prevention of hair loss and while none will grow hair on a bowling ball they have been shown to be effective in some patients. in addition their side effects and safety profile are well documented. So here we were with another person who was asking for a natural remedy and I’m not even sure he understood why he was asking for something that was natural so i sent him a copy of my new article hot off the presses. His response left me at a loss for words.

“Doc thanks for researching the supplement i asked you about. Thanks too for the article. I realize that natural products are no safer than real drugs and may not work at all. Are there any other natural supplements I could take?”

And this guy is a computer scientist. The wall has too many dents already. I’ll just bang my head on the desk.

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Posted: 26 April 2012 01:14 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 5 ]
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macgyver - 26 April 2012 01:03 PM

I’m starting to give up on the ability of people to be rational thinkers.

Oh, I did that long ago. LOL

macgyver - 26 April 2012 01:03 PM

“Doc thanks for researching the supplement i asked you about. Thanks too for the article. I realize that natural products are no safer than real drugs and may not work at all. Are there any other natural supplements I could take?”

Given some of the past threads we’ve had here, I wonder if it couldn’t be an issue of cost.

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Posted: 26 April 2012 01:43 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 6 ]
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I attended SkeptiCal this past weekend, and someone gave a presentation about the 10:23 campaign. He explained Avegadro’s number and what that implied for the supposed efficacy of the medicines. He went over exactly how they were made. He hit every point I could think of, and at the end asked for questions. The one question was from a woman who wanted (for fairness) to hear what ‘the other side’ had to say. We all did a collective face palm.

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Church; where sheep congregate to worship a zombie on a stick that turns into a cracker on Sundays…

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Posted: 26 April 2012 02:10 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 7 ]
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dougsmith - 26 April 2012 01:14 PM

Given some of the past threads we’ve had here, I wonder if it couldn’t be an issue of cost.

I’m sure it is in some cases but i get the same response from people sometimes when i am prescribing pravastatin for their cholesterol and you can get a 90 day supply of that at Target and Walmart for $10.. even with no insurance! I’ve had patients ask me if they could take red rice yeast extract instead because its natural and when i tell them it has the same drug in it as the very first statin drug Mevacor but in an unknown dosage I often get…“So would that be OK then?”

Most of the time they see the light when i explain that it is EXACTLY the same drug and has exactly the same side effects although I’m never sure if they totally get it because after all “Its natural”

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Posted: 26 April 2012 02:13 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 8 ]
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macgyver - 26 April 2012 02:10 PM

I’m sure it is in some cases but i get the same response from people sometimes when i am prescribing pravastatin for their cholesterol and you can get a 90 day supply of that at Target and Walmart for $10.. even with no insurance! I’ve had patients ask me if they could take red rice yeast extract instead because its natural and when i tell them it has the same drug in it as the very first statin drug Mevacor but in an unknown dosage I often get…“So would that be OK then?”

Most of the time they see the light when i explain that it is EXACTLY the same drug and has exactly the same side effects although I’m never sure if they totally get it because after all “Its natural”

Yes, this is a very real problem. It’s a version of magical thinking.

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Posted: 26 April 2012 03:46 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 9 ]
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macgyver - 26 April 2012 05:46 AM

Very well done video. If there was only some way to get it to the people who need to see it so it wasn’t just preaching to the choir

Hear hear!

macgyver - 26 April 2012 02:10 PM

I’m never sure if they totally get it because after all “Its natural”

I don’t supposed argumentum ad natura (appeal to nature) means anything to them.

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