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November 14, 2020

Stop your complaining! (14/11/2020)
Look, I've told you before that I have another hobby bedsides this web site and I was doing it last week so I couldn't be here. It involved driving 600 kilometres to stand around being showered with dust (and you can read about it here). In the spirit of 2020 an event 100 kilometres from my place was cancelled and the one six times the distance away was substituted, but it wouldn't be 2020 without disappointment and inconvenience.

Temporary Ratbag Castle and AusrallyDotCom Headquarters. Apparently art requires suffering. But not too much suffering.

The final rally for the year happens next weekend, so I'll be there not here. It's 25 kilometres from my place (excellent!) but the local paper will expect a story to be filed on the Monday. Busy, busy, busy.

Chiropractors won't like this! (14/11/2020)
One of my favourite medical journals is Chiropractic & Manual Therapies which says that it "publishes manuscripts on all aspects of evidence-based information that is clinically relevant to chiropractors, manual therapists and related health care professionals". You might wonder why I like a journal which is seemingly devoted to quackery, but it regularly carries papers which very politely verge on ridicule of the nonsense of chiropractic and the untruths and exaggerations that come out of the mouths of chiropractors. The editors seem to be rather intolerant of the mythical subluxation, and the journal has published several papers pointing out that something which can't be detected almost certainly doesn't exist.

Anyone who has paid even the slightest attention to chiropractic will know that its practitioners are very quick to be able to treat and even cure any "dis-ease" (the industry jargon word) that anyone can imagine or describe. As nobody could be unaware of the COVID-19 pandemic sweeping the world, nobody should be surprised at chiropractors saying they have the answer and it can be treated by back cracking. A paper published on November 4, 2020, in C&MT (Simpson, J.K., Innes, S. Informed consent, duty of disclosure and chiropractic: where are we?. Chiropr Man Therap 28, 60 (2020).) looked at the ethical and legal ramifications of this outrageous claim.

Here is the abstract of the article (pay particular attention to the parts marked in green).

The COVID-19 pandemic has seen the emergence of unsubstantiated claims by vertebral subluxation-based chiropractors that spinal manipulative therapy has a role to play in prevention by enhancing the body's immune function. We contend that these claims are unprofessional and demonstrate a disturbing lack of insight into the doctrine of informed consent. As such it is timely to review how informed consent has evolved and continues to do so and also to discuss the attendant implications for contemporary health practitioner practice.

We review the origins of informed consent and trace the duty of disclosure and materiality through landmark medical consent cases in four common law (case law) jurisdictions. The duty of disclosure has evolved from a patriarchal exercise to one in which patient autonomy in clinical decision making is paramount. Passing time has seen the duty of disclosure evolve to include non-medical aspects that may influence the delivery of care. We argue that a patient cannot provide valid informed consent for the removal of vertebral subluxation. Further, vertebral subluxation care cannot meet code of conduct standards because it lacks an evidence base and is practitioner-centered.

The uptake of the expanded duty of disclosure has been slow and incomplete by practitioners and regulators. The expanded duty of disclosure has implications, both educative and punitive for regulators, chiropractic educators and professional associations. We discuss how practitioners and regulators can be informed by other sources such as consumer law. For regulators, reviewing and updating informed consent requirements is required. For practitioners it may necessitate disclosure of health status, conflict of interest when recommending "inhouse" products, recency of training after attending continuing professional development, practice patterns, personal interests and disciplinary findings.

And the authors' conclusion:

Ultimately such matters are informed by the deliberations of the courts. It is our opinion that the duty of a mature profession to critically self-evaluate and respond in the best interests of the patient before these matters arrive in court.

I believe that the authors show optimism that would make Pollyanna look like a pessimistic curmudgeon.

See more Jesus and Mo here

Poor, poor, Paleo Pete (14/11/2020)
Imagine you are someone who rants about the dreadful ingredients in vaccines, how they are harmful and maybe you aren't being told about what's really in there anyway. Imagine you also put your name to a line of packaged foods, promoted on the basis that they are good and healthy. Then imagine that one of the foods contains an ingredient which can cause a severe allergic reaction but somehow isn't mentioned on the label.

Ladies and gentlemen, I present Jamaican Simmer Sauce from Pete Evans' "Healthy Everyday" range of comestible goodies.

Perhaps I should quote from the recall notice issued by Food Standards ANZ:

The recall is due to incorrect packaging (Thai Green Curry Sauce 330g labelled incorrectly as Jamaican Simmer Sauce 330g) which has resulted in the presence of an undeclared allergen (fish).

Food safety hazard
Any consumers who have a fish allergy or intolerance may have a reaction if the product is consumed.

Wrongly labelled product containing an unannounced dangerous ingredient. From a man who has the hide to criticise pharmaceutical companies. You couldn't make this stuff up.

And the best comment so far: "Should be eaten with two bent spoons".

See more Wumo here

Quintessence Nook (14/11/2020)
November 2000 was a month of hiatus and reflection. The excitement of the Sydney Olympic Games had almost faded away and we were in sight of the end of the first and last year in our lives which ended in "00" and wasn't a leap year (most of us were not alive in 1600 and won't be around for 2400). Philosophers and linguists took time out to again discuss the weirdness of how the eleventh month of the year has a name suggesting it is really the ninth. There was a Beaver Moon on November 26 (don't ask!). Here's some quintessence from November 2000.

ChildCare Action Project
Imagine the Monday morning staff meeting down at the ChildCare Action Project headquarters. Tasks are being allocated for the teams to review the week's new crop of films. Doreen requests a change of assignment, because she is suffering from repetitive strain injury from clicking the f-word-counter at last week's reviews. John announces that now he has his new glasses he is ready to resume his counting-the-naughty-bits-below-the-waist duties. Margaret asks for clarification: does Sharon Stone saying "Oh God, oh God, oh my God!" to Russell Crowe get counted as three cases of "O" (Offense to God) or one case of "S" (Sex/homosexuality)? (She knows it is not homosexuality - someone explained that to her once.) Everyone is given a copy of the new U2 CD to see if the Irishmen are putting down religion again or being too Catholic.

That web design! With the rotating cross.

Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God by Jonathan Edwards
I like a good sermon. A good preacher can fill the hall with the smell of brimstone and get you shakin' in your shoes. You hear this stuff and you know you are going to Hell. You will not pass Go. You will not collect $200. If you have been wicked, and you know when you have been wicked, then God will cast you into a lake of eternal fire where you will spend eternity wishing for a single drop of cool water on your tongue. But no water will come, only bile and vinegar. And even they will dry up before your eyes. Remember this before you covet your neighbour's ass, or even his donkey. Don't even think about his Lexus. Imagine what it will be like, standing up to your waist in molten steel being thrashed with barbed wire and having salt rubbed into the wounds. And that's only for the first million years. After that it gets nasty.

Gone into the void, but if you want a dose of Hell Warning I can recommend Balaam's Ass (not your neighbour's ass, no siree, not never, that's forbidden) where you can be reminded of the horrors awaiting the sinful.

Postal Inspectors On The Rampage
When public servants go bad. You thought that the postal inspectors were just there to keep the mail safe from money launderers, gun smugglers and drug and porn distributors, didn't you? Well, you were wrong. This secret police force, conceived in the devious mind of Benjamin Franklin, is a surrogate CIA/FBI/MI6/KGB hybrid, bent on destroying all the freedoms that make a democracy great. These people will leave things on your desk. They leave the milk out of the refrigerator. They loosen the caps on salt shakers. They leave the seat up. They hide your car keys. They go into libraries and rip the last pages out of Agatha Christie novels. They know where it's at, and they go there, and they get it. These are evil people. Do not be deceived.

Vanished. Disappeared. Like mail containing cheques (or even checks) from Nigerian princes or love letters that you just know former lovers are writing to you, asking to come back. The letters that never come.

Do you ever listen to talk-back radio? Have you noticed how often it is that the people who call in are aliens? I know, you can't actually see them, it being radio after all, but a lot of them seem to be from some other place where thinking is different. Here's a site from someone who has had long conversations with aliens and continues to do so. This is really useful, because we need to know what the visitors think. For example, I would have thought that asking them if they liked Pink Floyd was just a conversation starter, but then they reply: "Absorb. We are Pink Floyd, and all other facets of your higher consciousness". What can I say? The lunatics are are in my hall. And stay out of Albuquerque.

The Center for the Study of Extraterrestrial Intelligence
Ever since I first heard Bob Dylan sing the words "You rode on a chromed horse with your diplomat, who carried on his shoulder a Siamese cat", I have wanted to be a diplomat. Specifically, I have wanted the perks of diplomatic office, in particular the chromed horse and the cat. Now I find that someone is arranging for diplomatic contact with alien intelligences. This has got me really excited, because I've got a bit of spare time and I could do with a change of career. In fact, I'm so excited and enthusiastic that I will even bring my own cat. It's not Siamese (they call it Thailand these days), but we both love Thai food. I even mentioned that wonderful Thai resort Phuket the other day when I tripped over the cat. That must be an omen.

This site won Loon of the Month. The citation read:

Loon of the Month
This Loon of the Month thing gets harder all the time. I thought for a moment that I was going to be able to find out what "The Piper at the Gates of Dawn" was all about (both the Pink Floyd version and the chapter in The Wind in the Willows), but the Cassiopaeans were being their normal playful selves and avoided the question. I considered the postal inspectors for a moment, but then I got worried that they might rampage round to my place and move my potplant. Finally, the lure of the chromed horse and the cocktail circuit drew me back to the diplomatic corps. I can't wait until I get my red passport so I can park anywhere I like.

Dr Steven Greer, the owner of this site, has collected all his "wisdom" into the one place, and even though he has a link to CSETI the link just brings you back to where you were. This reflects the toroidal model of the universe proposed by some astrophysicists, in which you get back to your original point if you travel for long enough. Aliens know all about this, because it's how they can travel across space at what seems to be greater than the speed of light. Or something.

The Home of Primordial Energy
Everyone likes getting something for free. Everyone likes it when rich people get what is coming to them. When we can all get unlimited free energy then the fat cats at the oil companies and the electricity authorities will be looking for jobs. And will we give them jobs? Well, we might let them oil the bearings of our free-energy generators or carry the ice from our self-refrigerating refrigerators. We might even let them wash our cars. After all, when we don't have to pay for fuel, we will have lots of money left over. But something worries me. What if these free-energy machines get too efficient? It's all very well to get out more than you put in, but these machines are still at a primitive state of evolution. Primordial, in fact. Once the expert engineers work them over, it might be dangerous to be near one. They will have to have warning labels: "Use at own risk!" Things could get nasty. After all, "rotation of a material object introduces spatial anisotropy of inertial mass measurements into the spatial region surrounding the rotating object". Lock up your tool kit.

A.T.I.M. Academy
I never really believed in the idea that people could predict the future, but it looks to me like Mr and Mrs Teutsch definitely could, because they named their son "Champion". I don't think they were naming him after a spark plug, so the only reasonable explanation is that they foresaw his status as an adult - a true champion of the intellect. After all, how many other people can claim to have "developed a unique scientific approach to the solution of every kind of problem". That's "every kind of problem"! Not just the sort that the rest of us work on, but all of them! That requires another exclamation point!! I really like the way the acronym "ATIM" includes the initial letter of another acronym ("IDEAL"). That is always a problem worth solving.

It seems that the one problem that Champion Teutsch could not solve was how to keep his web site going. PB October 2001

Someone was not happy.

Subject: Who do you think you are?
Date: Thu, 8 Nov 2001 23:22:02 -0800

You are one of the most arrogant people I have ever I have ever experienced. Sitting on your thrown of self indulgent false righteousness. Passing judgment on what you obviously know nothing about. Publicly slandering people you have never met. You should check out the facts about people before slinging such uniformed falsehoods, you might learn something useful. I am talking about what you wrote about Dr. Teutsch. I am one of his many successful clients. He is a true Champion in every sense of the word. He has tens of thousands of successful clients from all walks of life. The website was not a big deal to him. He doesn't need it. He is more successful than you could fathom.

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