Category Archive: Quackery

Mar 22 2013

It’s nice to see someone willing to live by their own advice

All the scientists and naturalists out there crying foul on behalf of the desert need to hang their intellects up for a moment and spend some time in their hearts for a while. I get the best rebuttal yet to my piece taking down Allan Savory’s “green the deserts by filling them with cows” pseudoscience. …

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Mar 17 2013

Adam Merberg on grazing and Allan Savory and TED

I wish I’d seen Adam Merberg’s excellent takedown of Allan Savory’s TED talk on “greening the deserts” before I wrote my own. Merberg provides a history of Savory’s career that’s remarkably detailed for its relative brevity, with a couple of damning quotes by Savory, including this one: You’ll find the scientific method never discovers anything. …

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Mar 15 2013

TED Talk: spreading bullshit about the desert

What? TED vectoring pseudoscience? Unpossible! In one recent particular instance, though, a TED talk firmly grounded in bullshit — literal and figurative — is gaining a mortifying amount of traction with people who really should know better. The lecturer is Allan Savory, who for the last couple decades has been pushing his own brand of …

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Mar 04 2013

Ha ha, Harvard!


This year, UMM will have Al Franken as our commencement speaker. Guess who Harvard gets? A comment on the Crimson story got me poking around (I am not a big Oprah watcher) and now I wonder: Did anyone on the Harvard honorary degrees committee consider the fact that Oprah is a major purveyor of pseudoscience? …

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Feb 08 2013

Anil Potti likes to keep his name in the internet spotlight

Anil Potti is the dodgy researcher who, after being found guilty of scientific fraud, hired an online reputation manager to fluff up his name. Then the guy who made stuff up in 18 papers and padded his CV fled to North Dakota, where he’s working in a cancer center…now that’s chilling, isn’t it? His latest …

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Feb 06 2013

Jenny McCarthy gets no respect

Why is Bill Maher’s name echoing in my head right now? It was Jenny McCarthy who was invited to promote a breast cancer charity in Ottawa, and had her invitation revoked because she’s a woo-woo dingleberry child-killing putz. I think it’s because the charity didn’t think it through. “To be honest, we didn’t expect this …

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Feb 04 2013

New vistas in digital quackery

Apparently, computer-based diagnostic algorithms provided cheaply via a smartphone aren’t reliable. Who would have guessed? There’s a slew of new apps available that allow you to take a picture of your weird mole or mysterious skin lesion, and they’ll then scan it and tell you whether you’ve got melanoma or not. You should be wary. …

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Jan 29 2013

Witch-Doctors on display

There is an organization in the UK called the Christian Medical Fellowship. OK, no problem, you might think — nothing wrong with Christian fellowship, nothing wrong with doctors who go to church or pray together. But you’d be wrong. Religion poisons everything. This is what the 4000 members of that organization talk about: demons. The …

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Jan 23 2013

Houston Cancer Quack gets a message

A campaign to raise donations for real cancer research on a Houston Cancer Quack’s birthday has resulted in a $13,000 donation. This morning, a group calling itself Skeptics for the Protection of Cancer Patients (SPCP) has delivered controversial cancer doctor Stanislaw Burzynski a birthday present: a $13,000 donation in his honor to St. Jude Children’s …

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Jan 17 2013

Well, now you know what to blame

Michael Savage, the rabid far-right talk radio loon, has gone on a tear against vaccination. He’s ranting about how those damned Democratic politicians aren’t getting any flu shots (really? I kind of doubt that). But then he also goes on to make claims of dire outcomes. But when you’re older, he argued, “and you get …

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