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Alternative Medicine Indeed!
Posted: 10 August 2009 06:09 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 61 ]
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asanta - 10 August 2009 12:03 AM

Nope, Occam is fair, my poor behavior was pointed out to me as well. I’m sorry I stooped to personal attacks, especially since I have never disagreed with you in the past. I guess we are both firmly entrenched in our particular camps and have to agree to disagree.

I am also sorry for my part.  I am just as guilty of keeping the momentum high and the commentary jabby (for lack of an actual word).  Thanks for the acknowledgment.  I appreciate what it took to post those comments, you too Occam.  I am fairly biased myself with my stint in association with big Pharma.  It is hard to accept a different perspective when you are so thoroughly convinced of your own.  I will bow out of any further conversation on this thread.  I think my position is established enough.

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Posted: 10 August 2009 08:39 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 62 ]
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GdB,

Sorry I wasn’t clear. I really only intended the first of the sentances you quoted to apply to your comments, not the second. You did seem to me to suggest that the misbehavior of companies involved in mainstream medicine was the key factor in driving people to CAM. I agree it is a factor, but I would probably rate it lower in importance than you do. It gives CAM proponents the opportunity to do some misleading marketing, but there are lots of other factors that explain the popularity of ineffective therapies (all the cognitive mistakes tthat lead us to thnk it’s effective, the need to seek some something, anything even when the reality is there is nothing that can be done, and so on; heck, there’s even some mathematical modelling that suggests ineffective therapies may spread more easily in a population than those that work.)

Anyway, no question you’re right that the truth needs public relations, and certainly any unethical behavior deserves condemenation. On balance, I think ALT Med is the greater danger, and there is no shortage of people willing to chastise the pharmaceutical industry, so I focus my attention where I think the need is greatest, but that doesn’t mean I don’t take your point.

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Posted: 11 August 2009 12:25 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 63 ]
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mckenzievmd - 10 August 2009 08:39 AM

Sorry I wasn’t clear. I really only intended the first of the sentances you quoted to apply to your comments, not the second. You did seem to me to suggest that the misbehavior of companies involved in mainstream medicine was the key factor in driving people to CAM. I agree it is a factor, but I would probably rate it lower in importance than you do. It gives CAM proponents the opportunity to do some misleading marketing, but there are lots of other factors that explain the popularity of ineffective therapies (all the cognitive mistakes tthat lead us to thnk it’s effective, the need to seek some something, anything even when the reality is there is nothing that can be done, and so on; heck, there’s even some mathematical modelling that suggests ineffective therapies may spread more easily in a population than those that work.)

Not just companies, also trad med doctors who do not really care for their patients. I know, I am not talking about all doctors. But it is a fact that the ‘role of a doctor’ is one that is also associated with status and power, not with really wanting to help people only. These kind of doctors give the rest a bad name. And then there are factor that were already mentioned by Doug: saving time and money, leading to stress and less attention for the patient than doctors would like to give. Then the alt med healer seems to be an alternative: (s)he has more time, really listens to you, is so kind…

mckenzievmd - 10 August 2009 08:39 AM

Anyway, no question you’re right that the truth needs public relations, and certainly any unethical behavior deserves condemenation. On balance, I think ALT Med is the greater danger, and there is no shortage of people willing to chastise the pharmaceutical industry, so I focus my attention where I think the need is greatest, but that doesn’t mean I don’t take your point.

Oh, well, I think it has something to do with wiping your own floor first. And trad Pharm has so much more power (at least here in Switzerland).

GdB

[ Edited: 11 August 2009 12:34 AM by GdB ]
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“The light is on, but there is nobody at home”

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Posted: 11 August 2009 05:11 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 64 ]
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Oh, well, I think it has something to do with wiping your own floor first. And trad Pharm has so much more power (at least here in Switzerland).

GdB

Yes GdB, Trad Pharma has FAR more power here in the US too. Look at Health Care Reform in the US-right now! It’s sad.

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Posted: 11 August 2009 09:42 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 65 ]
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Well, I don’t know how you quanify “more power.” Sure, mainstream pharma is much bigger, but it still has to deal with regular criticism from the media an with extensive regulations. The CAM lobby has managed to make itself almost entirely exempt from regulation (Through DSHEA, the exclusion of homeopathic remedies from FDA control, and so on), and they’ve done so by giving money to pliticians and using all the other dirty tricks that Big Pharma has, so one could argue they’ve been more succesful at co-opting the government. And CAM is rarely criticized by the media, since they tend to buy all the BS about the small, unappreciated genius working outside the Evil Establishment. Anyway, as I said there’s room for people who want to contribute constructively to challenge practtices in both areas, so I don’t see why it has to be one or the other.

As for how many “bad doctors” are out there in it just for the money and prestige, who knows. I’m not sure it matters. I’ve already said I think most CM practitioners are honest and really believe they are helping patients, but it doesn’t make them any less dangerous. And even an arrogant jerk of an MD does more good if they abide by the standards of care derived from good scientific evidence. You’re never going to stop people from being selfish, greedy, stupid, or any of that. The goal should be to limit the harm and maximize the benefit to patients, and again I think using real science as the basis for medical practice and then enforcing science-based standards through government regulation and oversight is he best way to do that. Maybe it is best to put one’s own house in order before crticizing others, but as far as I’m concerned the house of scientific medicine is already a lot more orderly, despite the exceptions, than the house of CAM, so I’m still more worried about the latter.

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Posted: 11 August 2009 02:58 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 66 ]
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Well, I don’t know how you quanify “more power.” Sure, mainstream pharma is much bigger, but it still has to deal with regular criticism from the media an with extensive regulations. The CAM lobby has managed to make itself almost entirely exempt from regulation (Through DSHEA, the exclusion of homeopathic remedies from FDA control, and so on), and they’ve done so by giving money to pliticians and using all the other dirty tricks that Big Pharma has, so one could argue they’ve been more succesful at co-opting the government. And CAM is rarely criticized by the media, since they tend to buy all the BS about the small, unappreciated genius working outside the Evil Establishment. Anyway, as I said there’s room for people who want to contribute constructively to challenge practtices in both areas, so I don’t see why it has to be one or the other.

You don’t know how you would quantify more power?
One could argue that CAM is more successful at “co-opting” (coercing is more like it! Coercing Democracy, plain and simple!!) the Govt?
CAM is rarely criticized by the Media? You’re starting to sound like one of the Conservatives complaining about “The Liberal Media”.
By and large the media reports on any outstanding events. If there is a dearth of “dull, lackaday, reportage to be done on CAM, and it’s preponderously large supply and demand effects, in-line with all that capitalism represents, I can’t see why the Big Media isn’t reporting on it. What a scoop! “Extra Extra read all about it-your chiropractor is ripping you off! Chiropractors Proven scams!”
Please try and remember also McKenz, that some portions of what most consider CAM is also owned by Big Pharma anyways.
I advocate neither Pharma, or CAM. I’ve said this from the beginning. You and some obviously support Big Pharma. You’re biased to say the least. You support giving Prozac to pets McKenz! What else needs to be said. Many of your fellow Vets don’t! Don’t tell me you have no allegiance to Pharma. Really! You are 1000% biased.

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Posted: 11 August 2009 03:16 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 67 ]
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VYAZMA,

You are so completely wrapped up in your own biases, you don’t listen to a word anyone else says, you just re-interpret it through your own agenda.

You sarcastically repeated my questions, but didn’t provide anything like an answer to them. If CAM companies and promtoers bribe legislators via campaign money to avoid being regulated, how is that not coercive of government in exactly the same way as when pharmaceutical companies influence these people through money? Why is one worse than the other, apart from your knee-jerk disdain for any company that makes drugs?

You keep saying I’m biased in favor of the pharmaceutical industry, but simply repeating it doesn’t make it so. I’m biased against quackery because it doesn’t work and it hurts people and animals. I’m biased in favor of scientific medicine because it does far more good than harm. Beyond that, you’re just making stuff up about me rather than dealing with the substance of what I’m saying.

Your comments about the media and CAM are incoherent. The media is generally very favorable in its coverage of alternative medicine. If you think it’s not, I’d be interested in seeing some evidence of that, because I spend a great deal of time looing at media coverage of CAM and rarely see critical, intelligent reporting on it. Whereas I see critical intelligent exposes on the evils of the pharmaceutical industry all the time. And I have no idea what any of this has to do with the ridiculous conservative cliche about a liberal media (which I don’t believe or promote in any way).

As for prozac for pets, I’m not sure what you’re talking about, but I am sure you have no idea what you’re talking about. There are plenty of circumstances in which animals suffering from phobias and anxieties can benefit from SSRI treatment, and properly used such drugs reduce severe, heartrending suffering on the part of pets and their owners. You obviously think such meds have no legitimate veterinary use, but you also obviously base that on your own biases rather than any factual knowledge or experience with veterinary behvaior medicine.

If hyou having anything of substance to say, say it. If you just want to keep bashing away at strawmen you make out of anyone who practices medicine, then you’re wasting everybody’s time.

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Posted: 11 August 2009 03:42 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 68 ]
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McKenz That paragraph you wrote which I responded to was an “apologists dream”. I read exactly what you wrote.
The focus of late is on Pharma. Not CAM. I started this firehole debate, and I included CAM in it just to get it on the table! Jumping Jupiter if it wasn’t going to come-up anyways. So I figured throw that in the mix, because it’s going to be used anyways in this debate.
I mean, we go for weeks on end with a daily “report” about the evils of CAM, and Alt-Meds. Some of it is droll! Ok…Ok we get it! Herbs don’t heal. Whoopee.
I have liberally sprinkled throughout this discourse my affirmation that I am not for CAM…or Alt-meds. I,as a consumer, not in either industry, no interest in either industry, can comment without bias on these items.
Now either your blind and deaf, or you are silently waiting in the wings for an outcome to this healthcare debate that doesn’t mesh completely with mine and others views on this Reform issue. That’s OK. I am politiking here. I’ll freely admit it. Although I’m outnumbered here(in this debate thread) there are a few others(in this debate thread) who are not making a “deliberate disconnect” with the powers of Pharma, and other medical lobbyists, who are trying to stymie reform.
This is the significance of this debate. It isn’t coincidental that intensive debate is going on all around the country, and right here.
I didn’t mean to mock you, but really…when you write that Pharma is comparable to CAM in shear power, lobbying, financial, and outright Willful Legislative Co-opting, I had to react.
Also don’t throw those barbs in there about me “having it out with doctors” or whatever you said. I don’t have some “proletariat chip on my shoulder against proffesionals” like you may think. Frankly I’d rather see animals get better treatment than humans! So There!
LOL

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