I am so happy that Minnesota and Michigan start with the same letter

It provides some cover when Orac starts raging about quackery at the UM…that is, the University of Michigan. There are a heck of a lot of hospitals embracing “alternative” or “integrative” medicine, which is a way to sucker patients with feel-good bullshit that does nothing for them, but does dilute the credibility of real medicine.

So it’s nice to see Michigan get the full broadside, while the University of Minnesota, which would never make snake oil a prominent part of their image, gets to hide in the shadow of that big bold “M”.

Wait, what am I saying? I want this crap publicly exposed! We in Minnesota need to pay more attention to the lies the university blandly encourages.

Related question: has anybody else noticed how ‘spirituality’ sites are always splashing crepuscular rays all over their web pages? It’s weird. Sure, they’re pretty, but it’s almost as if a theme is the use of obscuring clouds to partially block the light in random patterns.



  1. AndrewD says

    “Related question: has anybody else noticed how ‘spirituality’ sites are always splashing crepuscular rays all over their web pages?
    No…I use an Adblocker.

  2. robro says

    Unfortunately there are some health areas…e.g. mental health…where there doesn’t seem to be much “real medicine.” So, I can understand that it’s difficult to resist the urge to “try anything.” Personally, I put a dollar a week on the lottery because 5 minutes of that fantasy makes me feel better, it’s relatively harmless, and if I defied the odds, having enough money to pay for a lifetime of treatment doesn’t seem like a bad thing.

  3. blf says

    “I am so happy that Minnesota and Michigan start with the same letter”: So does Moronic, Masterful, Myers, Muddled, and the Mildly deranged penguin, along with Münster (German city) and Munster (Irish city and French cheese), Mars (planet and alleged candy bar), and Monsoon. Also Monster, Murder, and MUSHROOMS!

    To the minor extent this comment has any point or relevance, it’s Mundane, Mediocre, and Missing the point entirely… also typed on a French azerty keyboard configured as an English qwerty keyboard, meaning m is labeled , (comma).

  4. jaybee says

    My wife has various chronic issues (starting with Ehlers Danlos Syndrom, which keeps her in constant pain), and when the orthodox opinion is “we can’t do anything for you” or when a string of doctors says “Sure I can help” and it doesn’t, the alternatives start looking better.

    My wife is no sucker, but she has tried a number of things over the years on the basis of (a) other people with her condition report it helping, (b) it fits in the category of “at least it couldn’t hurt me”, and (c) one can imagine at least some possible influence. So she has gone through various diets, supplement regimes, acupuncture, chiropractic therapies of various kinds, and a few different “integrative” doctors, and others I’ve forgotten. She has outright refused to try “energy workers” because it fits in the wackaloon category.

  5. sillybill says

    blf or other penguin lover,
    Totally OT, but can someone explain to me the ‘mildly deranged penguin’ references? I’m new to this blog and have seen it referenced many times here and at other ftb blogs. I googled it and only got pointers to comments here. Thanks much.

  6. anbheal says

    Oh dear. Two women at a bar last weekend were flirting with my friend and me, both fell down, and so I insisted the manager call a cab. I wasn’t thrilled with the look of the cabbie, so we rode with them, poured them into their home, and one of their husbands chased us down the street with a machete. I paid their bar bill and the cab ride. I wanted to get them home safely, period. Both were Canadian, and we were in Mexico, and neither spoke particularly good Spanish. I got them home safe.

    Fast forward, the single one, visiting for two weeks, contacts me, found me on Facebook, apologizes for blowing chunks all over the cab, and asks if she can take me out to dinner, and reimburse me for my costs last weekend. I said you bet, she was close to six foot, curvy, very pretty. She starts talking about the magnenometer that’s off-kilter, it should be a 6.8 but it’s almost at 32 so we’re all going to have insomnia, and going off on anti-vaxx and anti-fluoride rants, and holding a pyramid-shaped crystal at 72 degrees, and the lunar landings being filmed in Arizona, and starts texting me links to articles by that Mecola (?) guy who’s been Numero Uno on Quackwatch for most of the past decade. And damn if I couldn’t take it any more and chose to argue. She was on my lap, in a beautiful courtyard, on a perfect mountain night 8500 feet up in La Sierra Gorda, all six feet and 38D of her, grinding against me, kissing me, but I could not take the inanity of it anymore. So I contested some of her breathy proclamations about crystals and pyramids and tilted magnenometrothingamabobs. Well, she pushed my hands away from the goods, stormed out, and i haven’t heard from her since. Damn, I hate science!

  7. anbheal says

    @7 David, I’m old, and it wasn’t meant to be gender essentialism. I have goods too. It just kills me that someone so smart and funny and engaging and hip and modern could harbor sooooo many completely ridiculous beliefs. Worse, they all had numbers and decimals and percentages attached! So she denies science entirely, and says it’s all a conspiracy on behalf of Monsanto and Pfizer (and okay, I’ll give her some leeway there, heh heh), but then her “evidence” is all science-y and statistic-y. I’d almost prefer someone who intones “it’s God’s will”. At least there’s some consistency to their obstinacy!

  8. blf says

    sillybill@5, A few answers about the mildly deranged penguin. At that time, she was at a year-long New Year’s Day party, or perhaps saving the planet from the then-incoming “Comet” Siding Spring ancient Mayan spacecraft (the correct interpretation of the earlier end-of-world predictions based on the Mayan long count calendar) — she’s never been very precise abut where or when she was or what she did — hence the “And I still haven’t the faintest idea where she is at the moment” at the end.

    At the moment, she’s up on the roof, sunbathing in a barrel of brandy and, from the sounds of it, practicing her Scottish Khöömei.