Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Tom Chivers of The Telegraph on Homeopathy (2011-02-23)

here are some recent words from a homeopathy skeptic:

001. Tom Chivers of The Telegraph [UK] writes in "James Delingpole, Keeping An Open Mind on Homeopathy" (2011-02-23):

"homeopathy – or 'magic water' [ of] comforting-yet-demonstrably-untrue nonsense [...] homeopathy’s magic beans [...] the evidence – which, one supposes, sceptics are supposed to study and evaluate before making an always-revisable-in-the-light-of-new-facts judgment – suggests that it doesn’t work. At all [...] the better quality the study done into homeopathy, the more likely it is to show that homeopathy is bunk [...] large-scale RCTs and good meta-analyses very consistently show that it simply doesn’t work [...] that’s before you get into the really funny stuff [...] like the fact that a fairly ordinary homeopathic dilution [...] is the equivalent of one-third of a drop of water in all the oceans in the world [...] that the duck-liver solution Oscillococcinum [...] is the equivalent of one molecule of the original duck in more than a centillion observable universes [...] if it worked, we would have to acknowledge that there is something else going on, some physical effect unknown to science, some memory of water or mystical force or something, and we would have to look for it. But it doesn’t work. So we don’t. It’s really very straightforward [...] it’s not as if homeopathy hasn’t been studied, as though there is a great big question mark hanging over its effectiveness. It doesn’t work. So it doesn’t pose any great questions about how it works. It doesn’t work [...] the point of scepticism – true scepticism – is that it is constantly evaluating. So, I promise you, if Ben Goldacre, or James Randi, or I [...] were to be presented with solid evidence that homeopathy worked, we would alter our position."

Note: very true.
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