Here’s a good game……

The game is to see how long it takes to get banned from an alternative medicine or other irrational site. I tried it with http://www.mercola.com. I have been monitoring the site for some time, and the other week decided to see how tolerant Joe Mercola would be to someone telling the truth. So I created an account and submitted two comments about mobile phone radiation which Mercola says is potentially lethal. Much to my surprise, the comments passed moderation and appeared on the site. I am Asolepius on this site. So I tried again, this time commenting on an article about organic food. Again, my comment was published. But right now you are wondering why you can’t see it. The reason is that the very next day my account had been disabled, and the second and third comments deleted. So how long did it take me to get banned from a `natural’ health site? Three days and only three comments. Can anyone beat that? For a few days the comments still appeared when I searched on my user name, but they have gone as well now – someone has manually gone through the site and purged me.

Now I don’t suppose for a moment that Joe Mercola ever reads this blog, but of course the whole purpose of his site is to sell his vast range of questionable products, such as special cooking pots (because aluminium ones give you dementia), and his air tube mobile phone earpiece. Is he, or anyone else in that field, the slightest bit interested in defending their claims with rational argument? Of course not, they just delete adverse comments and ban anyone who challenges them. Go to the FDA site and search for `Mercola’. You get 88 hits. Maybe more by the time you read this. A lot of them are his crackpot lobbying of the FDA to promote his business, but he gets a steady stream of warning letters and enforcement actions, which he seems to wear as a badge of honour. Well there is no honour in blocking debate about what he does.

Contrast this with my policy here. I have published two comments so far (to posts here and here), dissenting from my views. I won’t block such comments, on one condition. I have to understand them. Now I know that English is not everyone’s first language, but it’s the language of this blog so you have to be able to express yourself clearly. I won’t publish comments that are unintelligible. The two adverse ones so far are not very clear so I gave them the benefit of the doubt, so in future by all means argue with me, but make your points clearly please.

Meanwhile I am not bothering with Mercola any more. I thought about starting up http://www.mercolawatch.com but it would be a full time job and I have to earn a living. It would be satisfying to point out to him the difference between sodium nitrate and sodium nitrite, but I would have to start up another account and life is frankly too short.

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5 Responses

  1. I’ve heard of Mercola, obviously, but never really bothered to look at the stuff his website spews out. I thought I’d try, and chose infectious diseases as a starting point. I appreciate he is against everything vaccine, but his logic defies analysis, as exemplified by his inverse take on the flu vaccine. Now I will admit – it’s not fantastic, and it would be nice if it were more effective, but it usually saves thousands of lives each year, and that can’t be bad.

    So what does Merc have to say?

    Vaccine Blamed for the Worst Flu Season in Four Years.

    Now, maybe I’m just stupid, but I blame influenza virus for causing influenza, not flu vaccine. I had thought it would be obvious to anyone with an IQ in double figures that the fact the vaccines didn’t work as well at preventing flu this year (each year the vaccine strains have to be chosen in advance to prepare the vaccine on the basis of what is predicted to be the main variety that particular season) was an indication that the vaccines worked better in previous years. Tha’s one obvious conclusion, and is an indication that the vaccine can work. Mercola is just trying his usual antivaccine scaremongering tactics about a season when vaccine was less protective than usual (44% vaccine efficacy according to the CDC). In his little commentary, he even implies the vaccine is ineffective because people who had been vaccinated and happened to later get some nonspecific flu like upper respiratory tract infection (which was proven NOT to be influenza) still “felt like they had the flu.” Clearly he regards these cases as vaccine failures.

    Far better people follow Mercola’s tips for avoiding flu – Take his expensive vitamin D supplements and avoid any sugar. I wonder what we can conclude if anyone gets a cold on his regime – that Mercola is to blame for their “flu”?

  2. A follow up…….
    Having read some of the comments by people on his site, I can see why anything factual would earn a quick ban. I mean, who wants anyone posting a contradiction to opinions like this:

    “Asian Flu” pandemic of 1918 was caused by the injection. Due to the fact the ones who got it also received the injection. Those who did not receive the injection were fine. Just look at the studies found at http://www.drcarley.com and see the facts as they exist. We must remember the goal of the UN is to depopulate the world by 3/4 percent. That is a lot of people who must die to reach the goal.

  3. Forgive my ignorance, but was `flu vaccination available in 1918? BTW I looked at http://www.drcarley.com and could not find anything intelligible.

  4. No, it certainly was not available in Sweden 1918, when my great grandmother barely survived, what we called the Spanish Flu (not asian). Others were not so lucky: in her village more than two thirds of the people died. Natch, my great grandma was all for the vaccines when they became available to her grandkids. My mum is old enough to remember kids in her school dying or ending up crippled for life from polio, somehow this doesn’t seem to happen around where I come from anymore. I wonder why?

  5. I’d say he’s off to a bad start, since it wasn’t Asian Flu, it was Spanish Flu. Asian Flu didn’t occur until the middle of the 20th century. Besides, questioning the efficacy of influenza vaccines from that period in order to discredit current vaccines would be like claiming a modern train is unsafe because some steam engines exploded in the 1800s.

    Modern vaccines use an inert form of the virus. Older vaccines didn’t, in fact in some cases it was just a transfusion of the blood from recovered victims.

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