Knievelism – Is your stunt dramatic enough?

The Comedy and Tragedy Masks
Previously, I wrote about the issues that The 10:23 Campaign and its participants needed to consider in their laudable opposition to homeopathy. There, I wanted to focus on technical issues like safety and logic.

A major tactic of The 10:23 Campaign in 2010 was to generate educational opportunities by means of an attention gathering stunt – the mass overdose. While I have safety and scientific issues with the mass overdose stunt, it is also not clear why it should be a particularly compelling event to the relatively disinterested audience that is the general public. Why?

The mass overdose stunt is boring. Continue reading “Knievelism – Is your stunt dramatic enough?”

Safe and Effective Skeptical Activism – The 10:23 Campaign

At 10:23AM on 30 January 2010, the 10:23 Campaign staged a mass overdose of homeopathic “medicine” to protest the sale of homeopathy products in Boots pharmacies, especially under the Boots brand name. The event generated a considerable amount of media attention and increased public awareness of the nature of homeopathy, although it has not yet succeeded in getting Boots to disavow homeopathy.

Spending on homeopathy by the government and private individuals is medically indefensible. Furthermore, wasting money on medically ineffective water and sugar pills at a time when local NHS trusts regularly run out of funds, and education and scientific research budgets may be slashed is ridiculous. Therefore, I am a strong supporter of the 10:23 Campaign’s goals and want nothing more[1] than to see them succeed.

But[3] I have concerns about the safety and efficacy of the 10:23 Campaign’s approach, which I have helpfully categorized as Economic, Philosophic, Scientific, Pedagogic, and Safety. Continue reading “Safe and Effective Skeptical Activism – The 10:23 Campaign”

When Supplements “Work”. . .Joy Slim Recall

An herbal supplement for weight loss called Joy Slim, is being discontinued and recalled. Why? Because it contains sibutramine, an FDA regulated drug. Sibutramine, an appetite suppressant, is also used to treat obesity. There is no word on whether the FDA will take further disciplinary action against the manufacturer.

Continue reading “When Supplements “Work”. . .Joy Slim Recall”

When Supplements “Work”. . .Slim-30

We have a “brace” of dietary supplement problems today (well today where you are, it is ever so slightly tomorrow here). Now, batches of an herbal supplement called Slim-30, a purported weight loss supplement, are being recalled. Why? Because they contain sibutramine, an FDA regulated drug. Sibutramine, an appetite suppressant, is also used to treat obesity.

Continue reading “When Supplements “Work”. . .Slim-30”

When Supplements “Work”. . .Vialipro recall

Vialipro, an “all natural” supplement advertised to enhance sexual performance, is undergoing a voluntary recall, because some US FDA testing revealed that several batches contain undeclared sulfoaildenafil, an analog of sildenafil, a drug for the suspiciously similar condition of erectile dysfunction. Continue reading “When Supplements “Work”. . .Vialipro recall”