Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Pseudoscience

The following can be considered definite pseudoscience, the proponents of which are either uninformed, or just after your money. These are not all the fields considered to be pseudoscience, just those that I consider the most prevalent in society and have had extensive study done on them or fail at making any predictions whatsoever(look at my first blog entry)

  • Homeopathy- The belief that in heavy dilutions "like cures like" for instance it asserts that since caffeine causes insomnia, that in heavy dilutions it should CURE insomnia( A cup of coffee is a dilution of caffeine is it not?). It has had a lot of study done to assess its effectiveness and the overwhelming consensus is that it has no effect stronger than the placebo. 
  • Chiropractic - This has a broad philosophical background that varies by practitioner but it focuses on spinal manipulation, and that the body has a natural energy that heals itself and this energy must be nurtured by whatever the practitioner suggests. Shown to be ineffective as well.

  •  Fortune telling - This ranges from Tarot cards, to palm reading, to numerology, crystal balls, even just hotline psychics....quite literally hundreds of  techniques. Quite confidently a bunch of hokum!
  • Seance - Various ways of communicating with dead spirits. Think John Edwards etc. All use psychological techniques to give the impression however false. Watch Derren Brown do exactly the same(he admits he is a fraud, quite a brilliant fraud)
  •  Astrology - The belief that personal traits and fortunes can be predicted or are determined by astrological zodiacs. Probably the most common. Relevance is achieved by making vague and ambiguous predictions that can be easily perceived to be true( no matter which zodiac!) 
  • Intelligent Design- Can't be considered science as it is completely untestable(see 1st blog post)
  • Any health product or technique purported to work by using the natural energies of your body be it electrical, magnetic or spiritual. All hokum! 


I hope this post get a few of you thinking, if you have questions, don't be afraid to ask!

34 comments:

  1. Too many big words....*head explodes*

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  2. Hummm I've never believed in any of those to begin with but you make some valid points, great blog!

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  3. ahahahah those power bracelets are all that comes to my mind

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  4. ah, i see a fellow-minded person here :)
    please continue bashing pseudoscience! love it!

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  5. haha John Edwards. Reminds me of the South Park episode where he wins biggest douche bag in the universe

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  6. How bout acupuncture? It works but the explanations for it is complete pseudoscience.

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  7. power bracelets, wow.
    I guess you can really sell everything with the right marketing :D

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  8. "How bout acupuncture? It works but the explanations for it is complete pseudoscience."

    I think accupunture falls under the last bullet. It apparently has some effect on pain treatment, but its not going to help you stop smoking.

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  9. hmm interesting. i've never heard these called "pseudosciences" before

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  10. yeah the power bracelets were a pretty big hit for something so psychological.

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  11. Hey you've got a pretty good blog too.

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  12. I didn't know most of these were considered science! XD

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  13. Nice blog, interesting topics and what not too.

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  14. Very interesting read. Keep up the good work

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  15. Very good stuff, I agree on all of these too. Fun read.

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  16. i like the pseudoscience of a metaphysical world. where does that fall under?

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  17. By metaphysical I assume you mean paraspsychological?(metaphysics is a branch of philosophy)

    Seance - Communication with deceased(ghost included)

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  18. I agree completely, but it is a fine line between realism and pessimism

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  19. Coulda sworn there was some science behind Chiropractic work but the rest i agree with.

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  20. You should check out the show Fringe, it deals with this stuff.

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  21. I see where are on the same wave length, just yourself another follower :) look forward to hearing more from your blog

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  22. Seance would be really great, if this is working

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  23. Certainly we have to be careful with pseudosciences, they are all over the place. Cool, might write an entry about this someday

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  24. Yeah, was also under the influence that chiropractors followed a legit science, but eh. Interesting read regardless!

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  25. Yes homeopathy realy doesn't work. My mom totaly believes in it so I'm stuck with losy not working medicine.

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  26. Cool blog man some interesting points you bring up

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  27. Great blog, very insightful. New follower.

    http://gnarlyweather.blogspot.com/

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  28. I've done a lot of research on theology, esoteric study, demonology, and pseudo-science in general out of general interest. Very interesting topics, but yes, absolutely scientifically unsound and unproven.

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