MD, PhD, MAE, FMedSci, FRSB, FRCP, FRCPEd.

The 30 most recent comments from all posts are listed below. Click on the post title to go to the comment on the post’s page.

  • Comment by ama on The NCCIH (formerly NCCAM, formerly OAM) has proven to be a monumental, unethical waste of money Friday 23 February 2024: 09:02 Sure. But the important detail is HOW to do that. This is very complicated due to legal problems. The laws in Germany are quite different to those in the USA. Americans have an advantage in uncovering facts.
  • Comment by Edzard on The NCCIH (formerly NCCAM, formerly OAM) has proven to be a monumental, unethical waste of money Friday 23 February 2024: 08:02 I’m afraid you would need to name them in order to hold them to account.
  • Comment by ama on The NCCIH (formerly NCCAM, formerly OAM) has proven to be a monumental, unethical waste of money Friday 23 February 2024: 08:02 Some US senators enabled some frauds. Some of them are from Germany. It is a pity, but I must not give their names…
  • Comment by Edzard on The NCCIH (formerly NCCAM, formerly OAM) has proven to be a monumental, unethical waste of money Friday 23 February 2024: 08:02 I am not sure what precisely you consider to be fraud nor who exactly you would accuse of fraud.
  • Comment by ama on The NCCIH (formerly NCCAM, formerly OAM) has proven to be a monumental, unethical waste of money Friday 23 February 2024: 08:02 I think we should go a step further: Find and localize those, who are responsible for the frauds. There are some persons, who appear quite often. They are members of whatever networks, and they manoeuvre again and again near to the money pots. Look for instance at this: “WARNUNG VOR DEM SAMUELI-INSTITUT! Militärforschung an der Viadrina?” “Integrative Healthcare for the Military: A Samueli Institute/Department of Defense Partnership” https://www.allaxys.com/~kanzlerzwo/index.php?topic=7576.0 Follow the money…
  • Comment by Edzard on AUWEI, the GWUP is falling apart! Friday 23 February 2024: 07:02 This what I wrote in my post: “There are many AUWEI subjects that do not interest me and perhaps even more that I find outright silly.” I want to be allowed to find a subject irrelevant or silly; it’s my personal choiice. I find medical topics interesting, others don’t. I cannot see a problem. The problem arises, once we put subjects under an umbrella like woke. In my view, the GWUP should have a focus on core science subjects but not disallow other topics. Stop behaving like we are in kindergarden and be realistic!
  • Comment by Edzard on AUWEI, the GWUP is falling apart! Friday 23 February 2024: 07:02 yes, that’s one reason why I said I am as much anti-woke as I am anti-antiwoke. woke is just devisive nonsense!
  • Comment by Jashak on AUWEI, the GWUP is falling apart! Friday 23 February 2024: 07:02 It seems that one major point of disagreement between the new board and the „anti-woke“ fraction of the GWUP is the question, if issues like gender-conform language, cultural appropriation, rights for trans-people etc. are indeed issues that the GWUP should focus on or not. If I understood correctly, then then new board (Hümmler, etc.) does not think so, but the “anti-woke” fraction (Mukerji, Sebastiani, etc.) would like to include these topics. In my opinion, these topics are very important, but to a large part societal/political/cultural questions, not scientific and therefore, a diverse group like the GWUP will never agree on a unanimous position with regards to these issues. I therefore would be happy if the GWUP would not deal with these issues, but rather focus on issues like education about science & rational thinking in general, climate change, exposing health-realted scams & esoteric , etc. which are more important imo anyways. May I ask you, Prof. Ernst: do you think that these hotly debated “woke” topics that I mentioned above are topics that the GWUP should deal with/focus on?
  • Comment by Carsten on AUWEI, the GWUP is falling apart! Friday 23 February 2024: 07:02 „or have compassion/empathy etc. merely as a meaningless ideology for scoring points” There are people like that, so I can’t blame you for a certain degree of cynicism. However, I see a lot of bad-faith interpretation on the “anti-woke” side as well: people who will read any attempts at expressing empathy/kindness (let alone asking others for it) as holier-than-thou, self-aggrandizing and/or dishonest. I wish the sceptic community (and our society at large) were able to find a constructive middle-ground between these two extremes.
  • Comment by Ady on Prince Charles and Laurence van der Post – does it matter? Friday 23 February 2024: 05:02 Van der Post was a terrible fantasist and poser. A 14-year-old girl was entrusted to his care on a ship journey from South Africa to England. He seduced her and got her pregnant. After a few weeks she was forced to return to South Africa, with child. Van der Post subsequently publicly denied he was the father, despite secretly paying support for her in a confidential trust. He claimed to be a farmer, a conservationist. Lilian Bowes Lyon bought him a farm in England, which he failed at (having no relevant farming experience). Lilian bought herself a cottage within sight of the farm, where the two of them continued their 3-year affair. Lilian’s cottage was within view of Van der Post’s wife, from the farm windows. The farm had to be sold after a couple of years. Van der Post kept the money from the sale. He lied about his activities and whereabouts during the war, as well as inflating his military rank. He claimed to have been central to the Rhodesian independence settlement, when there is no evidence he was even involved. I could go on…. Charles is not quite at this level of awfulness, but he did basically steal a young woman’s life into a loveless marriage, in which she was only there in order for her to provide him with children, heirs. All the time he was in love with another (married) woman, and that affair soon resumed. He was also fatally naïve enough to take someone like Van der Post at his word. The Queen had it right when she told Diana “Oh, Charles is hopeless!”
  • Comment by Valerie on “Heal”, the documentary: nonsense and cruelty on health and disease Friday 23 February 2024: 04:02 Oh wow. A bunch of people who like to hear themselves talk. Boring. How about – do what works for you and leave everyone else the hell alone? Simple. Solved the problem for all of you.
  • Comment by Edzard on AUWEI, the GWUP is falling apart! Thursday 22 February 2024: 17:02 you want my cynical answer: because woke-wafflers are not bright enough or have compassion/empathy etc. merely as a meaningless ideology for scoring points and not for applying.
  • Comment by Carsten on AUWEI, the GWUP is falling apart! Thursday 22 February 2024: 17:02 Yes, that entry is part of what I meant by ‚I‘m sure that’s not your approach.‘ Re: empathy/compassion: I‘m glad (though not surprised) we agree on that. The question then, to me, is: Why does the discussion about „woke/AUWEI“ issues so often appear to ignore that empathy & compassion are a primary driver of many of them?
  • Comment by Edzard on AUWEI, the GWUP is falling apart! Thursday 22 February 2024: 16:02 here is what I wrote about Fritzsche at the time: https://edzardernst.com/2014/03/thoughts-about-claus-fritzsches-suicide/ I think compassion [which is evidence-based], empathy [also evidence-based] are very far from ‘woke’ as it is understood by most today.
  • Comment by Carsten on AUWEI, the GWUP is falling apart! Thursday 22 February 2024: 16:02 I looked into some of the comments on other forums about Fritzsche’s death and can imagine what you mean. And imo, that does indeed tie in with the current issue that this blog entry is about: A lot of what is being denigrated as “woke” these days is, to me at least, people trying to maintain a certain degree of kindness, of being humane towards each other. Based purely on “where the evidence leads”*, there may be no need for self-restraint in commenting on the suicide of someone as fraught as Fritzsche appears to have been. Just as there may be no need for gender-inclusive speech, avoiding racist terminology et sim. But should “the evidence” really be our only yardstick in how we treat our fellow human beings? *@Edzard: By quoting you here, I do not mean to imply that is your approach in this – I’ve read enough of your texts (including on Fritzsche) to be sure otherwise.
  • Comment by JC on Brillia: homeopathic quackery for autistic children? Thursday 22 February 2024: 14:02 After seeing the commercial thought I’d check it out. It seems for a holistic product, the ingredients seem very questionable buyer beware!
  • Comment by Edzard on AUWEI, the GWUP is falling apart! Thursday 22 February 2024: 13:02 thanks
  • Comment by Alexander Waschkau on AUWEI, the GWUP is falling apart! Thursday 22 February 2024: 12:02 A member of the 2014 board wrote me a text-message because he wanted me to stop writing on the member’s mailing list. “Alexander, I think it’s best, if you stop writing E-Mails now” At the time, I felt that this was a fundamental attack on my freedom of opinion – from the board no less -, that I personally only saw the consequence of resigning. To give more context: On the mailing list, inhumane comments were made about the suicide of Claus Fritsche, who was certainly not a positive person, but in my eyes the right to human dignity also applies to him. Especially after his suicide. At the time, I asked the Board to put a stop to this hate speech on the mailing list and instead received the above-mentioned text message in private. This board member still holds the same position on the new board today – which has prevented me from rejoining to this day.
  • Comment by Edzard on AUWEI, the GWUP is falling apart! Thursday 22 February 2024: 12:02 care to tell us why you left in 2014?
  • Comment by Edzard on AUWEI, the GWUP is falling apart! Thursday 22 February 2024: 12:02 Indeed!
  • Comment by Alexander Waschkau on AUWEI, the GWUP is falling apart! Thursday 22 February 2024: 11:02 I stumbled across your post and checked out the “hellhole” aka “X”. Just to give your readers the opportunity to get the full picture, I feel obliged to point out that this “troll” you quote was responding to a post by a member of the scientific board of the German Skeptics, who compared the next general meeting of the GWUP to a meeting of the SED (Socialist Unity Party of Germany (GDR)). Which is a very strange statement to say the least. As someone who left the German Skeptics in 2014, although I am a true sceptic at heart and produce a fairly successful German Skeptics podcast, I am very irritated by the developments in the German sceptic scene. A lot of people seem to have lost their way. It’s very sad to see.
  • Comment by Edzard on AUWEI, the GWUP is falling apart! Thursday 22 February 2024: 10:02 precisely what I am planning to do.
  • Comment by Jashak on AUWEI, the GWUP is falling apart! Thursday 22 February 2024: 10:02 You summarize very well why I am so annoyed with whole GWUP/woke/cancel culture debate. I hope that the new GWUP managing board will either be able to steer the organisation back towards core values, i.e. science-based rational thinking, educating the public about critical thinking/the fight against SCAM and para-science, or is soon replaced. I decided to wait until after the next general meeting to decide if I will to continue being a member of the GWUP or follow the current trend and leave it.
  • Comment by Edzard on AUWEI, the GWUP is falling apart! Thursday 22 February 2024: 09:02 yes! pronounced the German way, it would roughly translate into OH DEAR!
  • Comment by Richard Rasker on AUWEI, the GWUP is falling apart! Thursday 22 February 2024: 09:02 In my ears, AUWEI sounds like an exclamation of agony and despair … which does not seem fitting with your broad definition of the term. Maybe we can start with the more appropriate ‘DUH’ or ‘DUR’ (as expressions of stupidity) and see if we can think of something that has these terms as an acronym?
  • Comment by ama on AUWEI, the GWUP is falling apart! Thursday 22 February 2024: 08:02 Nothing new under the sun. 7 years ago the Paris Lodron Universität, Salzburg, Austria, made a “Genderwatch-Protokoll” für die Österreichische Hochschülerschaft Salzburg.* People ARE mad, and centers of madness the universities are, nobody can deny that. The “laisser faire” in all the pseudo-liberal countries was and is a lethal big mistake. Instead of keeping the weird people on track, they were allowed to commit more and more idiocies. One reason being in the USA, that the universities are private companies, which mainly live from tuition fees and donations, which turns out bad if the snotty brat students get a clap on their fingers. So, bowing under the load of the fear of losing money, the universities preferred to sack professors instead of punishing students for messing up, making riots, etc. One does NOT bow to idiots. Anyone who does not see the imperative behind this will be overrun. The “woke” (or whatever) nonsense is just one small part of a huge movement of idiots, running over everything they do not like. Science? Rejected. Honesty? Rejected. Righteousness? Rejected. I do not talk about “old values”, I talk about the bases of the societies in the countries all over the globe. The bases are eroded, societies are falling, they are in free air. What does this mean for, say, scientific societies? Very simple: DO NOT BOW TO IDIOTS. Because, if they do, they are doomed. I did not say a word about the GWUP, didn’t I? * Here is a satire on that affair in Salzburg: “(“Genderwatch-Protokoll” für die Österreichische Hochschülerschaft Salzburg, Januar 2017, korrigierte Fassung)” http://ariplex.com/folia/archives/1716.htm
  • Comment by RPGNo1 on Have the German skeptics lost the plot? (PART 1) Thursday 22 February 2024: 07:02 @ama Why are you asking me that? Go to the homepage of the “Informationsnetzwerk Skeptische Gesellschaft”, register in the forum and talk with the members. That makes far more sense than the speculation you are spreading here.
  • Comment by ama on Have the German skeptics lost the plot? (PART 1) Wednesday 21 February 2024: 18:02 Very funny. Why support a group, which does not work anymore? What will happen, when the Team Hümmler scene is no longer at the power? Will the Skeptische Gesellschaft cease to exist? Why should anyone be in TWO societies? There IS a break.
  • Comment by André Sebastiani on Have the German skeptics lost the plot? (PART 1) Wednesday 21 February 2024: 13:02 The sceptical society is an initiative from the heart of the GWUP. Its members have not left the GWUP. They want to become visible with their topics. These include some topics that GWUP chairman Holm Hümmler is fighting against.
  • Comment by RPGNo1 on Have the German skeptics lost the plot? (PART 1) Wednesday 21 February 2024: 13:02 2. those who left the GWUP and formed the Skeptische Gesellschaft This is not correct. The members of the “Informationsnetzwerk Skeptische Gesellschaft” are also still members of the GWUP, e.g. André Sebastiani. The SkepGes serves as a central point of contact to present, highlight and discuss the diverse contributions of GWUP members and GWUP external cooperation partners on socially relevant issues. By bundling these contributions, not only the exchange and discussion among the members should be promoted, but also a broader interest in the work of the GWUP should be aroused. After all, scientific skepticism and critical thinking are not only essential in scientific matters, but are also highly relevant to many issues in modern society. The GWUP has traditionally focused on the natural sciences and medicine. However, we believe that skeptics must critically discuss all forms of misinformation and should therefore also be present in the social sphere. On the one hand, SkepGes aims to highlight the importance of the humanities and social sciences and to convey a critical understanding of humanities and social science methods. After all, these scientific fields also offer important methods of critical examination that skeptics should know and apply. On the other hand, we want to use SkepGes to stimulate a discussion about the potential influences of pseudoscience, esotericism and ideology in society, the media, politics and culture. https://skeptische-gesellschaft.de/ueber-uns
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