Posts Tagged ‘quackery’

Trump Self-Prescribes Snake Oil

May 19, 2020

Trump Self-Prescribes Snake Oil
President Donald Trump, dissuaded from mainlining Lysol, has talked his doctor into giving him hydroxychloroquine in an effort to prevent COVID-19. “The hydroxy,” as the president calls it, is an anti-malarial drug with zero proven effect in preventing or treating COVID-19 infection, and the FDA has warned of its cardiovascular risks. As of this writing, we are unaware of any movement to revoke the medical license of Sean Conley, D.O., current Physician to the President, over this matter.

President Trump’s reasons for ignoring prevailing advice on the risks in taking hydroxychloroquine?

  1. “You’d be surprised at how many people are taking it….”
  2. “I’ve heard a lot of good stories.”
  3. “I get a lot of positive calls about it.”
  4. “What the hell have you got to lose?”

More:

“Despite FDA Caution, Trump Says He Is Taking Hydroxychloroquine As A Preventive,” Joe Palca, NPR News

“Trump’s stunning claim that he’s taking hydroxychloroquine could trigger a cascade of negative effects,’ Philip Bump, Washington Post

“Trump Takes Hydroxychloroquine, Does Not Understand How Science Works,” Jonathan Chait, New York Magazine

“Trump Says He’s Taking Hydroxychloroquine, But He Also Lies Daily,” Peter Wade, Rolling Stone

Updates:

“Pence says he isn’t taking unproven hydroxychloroquine treatment for coronavirus that Trump takes,” Kevin Breuninger, CNBC

“Trump dismisses hydroxychloroquine study that undermines him as a ‘Trump enemy statement,’” aaron Rupar, Vox

“White House releases doctor’s note on Trump’s purported use of hydroxychloroquine,” Peter Weber, The Week 

“Hydroxychloroquine Isn’t a Joke It’s a Scandal,” Josh Marshall, Talking Points Memo

“Antimalarial drug touted by President Trump is linked to increased risk of death in coronavirus patients, study says,” Ariana Eunjung Cha and Laurie McGinley, Washington Post

“Hydroxychloroquine: Trump’s Covid-19 ‘cure’ increases deaths, global study finds,” Sarah Boseley, The Guardian

 

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Image by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

Comments are welcome if they are on-topic, substantive, concise, and not boring or obscene. Comments may be edited for clarity and length.

Dr. Trump Prescribes Lysol Injections

April 24, 2020

Dr. Trump Prescribes Lysol Injections

On Thursday President Donald Trump, the man who brought you Trump Vitamins, posited treating COVID-19 by introducing disinfectants into the human body, since they do such a good job killing viruses on hard surfaces. The horrified makers of Lysol were quick to warn the public that injecting, swallowing, snorting, or, um, boofing disinfectant would be deadly. Clorox did the same. Even before the Quack-in-Chief made his alarming remarks, poison control centers saw a 20 percent spike in cleaning product poisonings in the first quarter of the year, coincident with the onset of the coronavirus pandemic.

Mr. Trump also suggested that heat and UV light applied internally would also kill the virus. Presumably doctors would butterfly patients to achieve this.

The president’s Friday statement that he was being sarcastic was met with the sarcasm it deserves.

More:

“President Trump’s dangerous suggestion that the coronavirus be treated with bleach injections, explained,” Matthew Yglesias, Vox

“‘Please don’t inject bleach’: Trump’s wild coronavirus claims prompt disbelief,” Poppy Noor, The Guardian

“Makers of Clorox and Lysol Warn Against Ingesting Bleach and Disinfectants,” Christine Hauser and Alan Yuhas, CNN

“Disinfectant injections are a really bad idea,” Jeanna Bryner, LiveScience

Updates:

“Trump Claims No Responsibility for Spike in Poison Control Calls After Bonkers Bleach Remarks,” Emma Tucker, Daily Beast

“Kansas official says man drank cleaner after Trump floated dangerous disinfectant remedy,” Jonathan Shorman and Francesca Chambers, Wichita Eagle

Related:

“Trump Thinks His Job Is Brainstorming Miracle Coronavirus Cures,” Jonathan Chait, New York Magazine

“Trump’s long history of medical freelancing,” Aaron Blake, Washington Post

 

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Image by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

Comments are welcome if they are on-topic, substantive, concise, and not boring or obscene. Comments may be edited for clarity and length.

Snake Oil Salesman-In-Chief Fires Scientist

April 24, 2020

Snake Oil Salesman-In-Chief

Dr. Rick Bright, a leading vaccine expert and director of the nation’s Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (BARDA), was demoted after urging caution in the use of the anti-malarial drug hydroxychloroquine against COVID-19. Previously, Donald Trump MD, the man who brought you Trump Vitamins, prescribed hydroxychloroquine as a miracle treatment for Coronavirus, due to his strong belief in the medical principle Infernum — quid amittere? (What the hell have you got to lose?). Dr. Bright says his dismissal was in retaliation for disagreeing with the president on the use of the malaria drug in treating coronavirus patients.

Doctor Trump was advised on hydroxychloroquine by some of the nation’s greatest medical minds: secret agent Rudy Guliani, economist Peter Navarro, software mogul Larry Ellison, TV quack Dr. Oz, Secretary of Slim Suits Jared Kushner, and Fox News hosts Laura Ingraham and Sean Hannity.  Another selling point may be that Didier Raoult, the French doctor whose discredited “study” of 7 patients started the whole hydroxychloroquine frenzy, bears a striking resemblance to the president’s pliant Park Avenue doc Harold Bornstein.

Now that he’s ousted vaccine developer Dr. Bright at BARDA, perhaps President Trump will replace him with another Labradoodle breeder.

A new study in Veterans Affairs hospitals found that hydroxychloroquine treatment kills more coronavirus patients than doing nothing. Fox News: Oops.

Meanwhile, South Dakota Governor and former beauty queen Kristi Noem launched a statewide hydroxychloroquine study. Perhaps she thinks South Dakotans aren’t dying fast enough.

More:

“Top Government Vaccine Expert Fired for Questioning Trump’s Fake Science,” Jonathan Chait, New York Magazine

“Top vaccine expert says he was fired for resisting Trump on hydroxychloroquine,” David Smith, The Guardian

“Trump’s Firing of a Top Infectious-Disease Expert Endangers Us All,” Michael Specter, The New Yorker

“Anti-malarial drug Trump touted is linked to higher rates of death in VA coronavirus patients, study says,” Christopher Rowland, Washington Post

“How Hydroxychloroquine Became Conservative Media’s Coronavirus Miracle Drug,” Alex Shephard, The New Republic

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Homeopathic Snake Oil Fuels the Measles Crisis

June 25, 2019

Homeopathic Snake Oil Fuels the Measles Crisis

Kate Birch, a homeopath based in Minnesota, is a leading quack in the lunatic anti-vaxxer campaign behind the raging measles epidemic plaguing America’s children. Homeopathic products are essentially small vials of very expensive water or alcohol masquerading as preventatives and cures for diseases and ailments. Substances they contain are so diluted that the products are essentially placebos.

Why, you may ask, doesn’t the FDA regulate this kind of bunkum? An original Senate sponsor of the 1938 “Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act” was a dean at a Homeopathic Medical College, and made sure the act identified all homeopathic swill as drugs. Existing FDA regs are, appropriately, watered-down. Since umpteen-hundred scientific studies show that homeopathic medicine doesn’t work, even the woo-woo department of NIH, the National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health, points out that homeopathy is bunk.

More:

“US homeopaths claim ‘therapies’ prevent measles and ‘cure’ autism,” Ed Pilkington, The Guardian

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FTC Cracks Down on Vintage Quackery

January 17, 2017

FTC Cracks Down on Vintage Quackery
The Federal Trade Commission will now require homeopathic “drugs” to bear labels admitting they are pseudo-scientific frauds. The products, essentially small vials of very expensive water or alcohol, are found in the “attention suckers!” aisles of health food stores, Whole Foods Markets, and CVS stores (which should know better). Substances they contain are so diluted that the products are essentially placebos.

Why, you may ask, doesn’t the FDA regulate this kind of bunkum? An original Senate sponsor of the “Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act” was a dean at a Homeopathic Medical College, and made sure the act identified all homeopathic swill as drugs. Existing FDA regs are, appropriately, watered-down. Since umpteen-hundred scientific studies show that homeopathic medicine doesn’t work, even the woo-woo department of NIH, the National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health, points out that homeopathy is bunk.

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Dr. Oz and The Baloney Diet

October 21, 2014

Dr. Oz and the Baloney Diet

Produced by Joss Fong, Joe Posner, Alex Hawley; narrated by Julia Belluz.

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Virginia Firm Stops Hawking Snake Oil

August 16, 2014

Virginia Firm Stops Hawking Snake Oil

Before the prosecution rested in the public corruption trial of former Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell and his former NFL Cheerleader wife Maureen last week, the focus shifted to the patent nostrum sold by Jonnie Williams, who is said to have given the couple high-priced gifts in return for promoting his product, a snake oil named Anatabloc. The active ingredient in Anatabloc is Anatabine, an alkaloid derived from tobacco.

Anatabloc was said to “reduce inflammation and support a healthy metabolism” but was marketed as a “dietary supplement” to avoid those pesky clinical trials required of drugs. That didn’t keep the firm from claiming that the stuff can mitigate Alzheimer’s disease, multiple sclerosis, thyroiditis and traumatic brain injuries. You know, like a drug. Finally, the FDA caught them at it and issued a stern letter.

But the McDonnell trial has increased scrutiny on and skepticism of Anatabloc, so the manufacturer has finally stopped selling it. If you’re a political memorabilia collector, maybe you can still find a jar behind the counter at your local GNC.

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Better Health Care Through Astrology

July 26, 2014

Better Health Care Through Astrology

“A Conservative MP has spoken of his belief in astrology and his desire to incorporate it into medicine.

David Tredinnick said he had spent 20 years studying astrology and healthcare and was convinced it could work.

The MP for Bosworth, a member of the health committee and the science and technology committee, said he was not afraid of ridicule or abuse.

‘There is no logic in attacking something that has a proven track record,’ he told BBC News.

He said he had studied the Indian astrological system Iahiri and the way it was used by that country’s government and recalled how Chris Patten, Britain’s last governor of Hong Kong, had an official astrologer, whom Mr Tredinnick had consulted while on a parliamentary delegation there.”

— “Astrology-loving MP seeks health answers in the stars,” BBC News

More:

“Astrology-loving MP David Tredinnick ‘convinced’ practise can reduce strain on NHS,” Kashmira Gander, The Independent

“Combining astrology and healthcare: your medical horoscopes,” Dean Burnett, The Guardian

“Tory MP says astrology is good for the health,”  Laura Donnelly, The Telegraph

 Related:

“Tory MP David Tredinnick claimed £755 for astrology software,” Polly Curtis, The Guardian

Medical astrology,” from Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

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Image by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

Comments are welcome if they are on-topic, substantive, concise, and not boring or obscene. Comments may be edited for clarity and length.

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Dr. Oz: Miracle Snake Oil Diet!

June 24, 2014

Dr. Oz: Miracle Snake Oil Diet!

Reality TV star Mehmet Öz, MD testified before a Senate committee last week about fraudulent weight loss scams. He knows all about it; he’s been promoting the likes of green coffee bean extractGarcinia Cambogia, forskolin, and gluten-free everything for years, when he’s not endorsing faith healing and homeopathy.

Has he no shame? Nope.

More:

“Senators to Dr. Oz: Stop Promising Weight-Loss Miracles,” James Hamblin, The Atlantic

“Dr. Oz, still shilling as fast as he can,” Michael Hilzik, Los Angeles Times

“Celebrity turns a good doctor into a snake oil pitchman,” Dr. Manny Alvarez, Fox News

“Dr. Oz Defends His ‘Miracles,'” National Journal

“Dr. Oz Defends His Pseudoscientific Claims As Harmless ‘Flowery Language,'” Francie Diep, Popular Science

“Dr. Oz: World’s Best Snake Oil Salesman,” Russell Saunders, Daily Beast

“It’s Time to Turn Off TV Doctors,” April Siese, Daily Beast

“The Operator,” Michael Spector, The New Yorker

“Why Dr. Oz can say anything and keep his medical license,” Julia Belluz, Vox

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Whole Foods Snake Oil

March 30, 2014

Whole Foods Snake Oil

“When confronted by Big Picture Science about their decision to sell homeopathic products, Whole Foods responded that, ‘because homeopathic remedies are safe and believed by many to be effective, we will continue to carry them in our stores.’ In other words, as long as homeopathic remedies are effective in separating people from their money, they will continue to be sold. Despite the overwhelming preponderance of evidence, Whole Foods cherry picks the record to suggest that there is ‘disagreement in the scientific community’ regarding homeopathy and that, of course, ‘there is a clear need for further research in this area.’ ‘Where have we heard that before?”

— “Hey, Whole Foods: Stop Selling Snake Oil,” Paul SanGiorgio, Triple Pundit

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