This guy
January 19, 2001 9:31 PM   Subscribe

This guy thinks all natural deaths are caused by vitamin or mineral deficiencies. And is a great read. Imagine Ross Perot saying this:
Well, when I practised for 12 years up in Portland, somebody'd come to me with a headache. Never had one, and I'd just walk up to them and tap them on their sinuses, and if they collapsed to their knees, they'd know they had a sinus headache. "Oh Doc, why'd you do that?" Well, that's a cheap lab test. Then if they had blood dripping out of their nose, it would take a $35 x-ray to see if they had a cancer in there. 35 bucks and a free lab test as opposed to 421 bucks.
I'm pretty sure he's a nut. But you can never tell.
posted by norm (5 comments total)
I'm afraid we do know he's a nut. We know the causes of many kinds of death and they're not all related to dietary deficiencies. Even if you eliminate trauma-related deaths, other kinds are clearly caused by other things. For instance, melanoma can kill you and it's caused by excessive exposure to hard UV. (Critical dose depends on how pale your skin is; as a red-head I have to be very careful about exposure to the sun.)

But it depends entirely on how you define "natural death". If you exclude from it anything known to have another cause, then this is an example of the No True Scotsman ploy, which is victory-by-definition.
posted by Steven Den Beste at 9:39 AM on January 20, 2001

But, the logic would go, the exposure to UV wouldn't kill *cause* melanoma if you had enough of the body's natural melanoma-fighting miracle chemical, Vitamin M. What, there is no Vitamin M? That's because we haven't found it yet, no doubt due to the stranglehold of the medical establishment/pharmaceutical industry/etc. over real innovators. It's pretty hard to defeat this logic with other logic. That's why cranks, like delusional people, are so hard to reason with. As old Ludwig says of similar types of logic, "This is not a finding, it is a requirement."
posted by rodii at 8:24 PM on January 20, 2001

That was more or less my thought too. On the other hand, his point about the ascendancy of the medical profession and the inflation of service costs is right on. I'm reminded of a story my father in law used to tell about how he visited the same dentist for thirty years, paying $20 cash for a regular checkup, tops. One day his union negotiated a contract for full health benefits. The next time he got a bill, he noticed that the visit was billed to his insurance company at $75. When he asked the dentist about it, his dentist told him, "why should a dentist in California make more per visit than me? If the insurance company will pay me $75, I'll take it."
posted by norm at 12:05 AM on January 21, 2001


posted by stbalbach at 10:07 PM on January 21, 2001

I saw this at least five years ago. A lot of companies that make colloidal minerals use this piece to hawk their wares; I know one company was sending out free audio CDs of this doctor's talk.

I'm not sure the doctor involved is actually selling anything or is committing fraud, but a lot of unscrupulous people are using his speech to peddle snake oil.
posted by kindall at 11:09 PM on January 21, 2001

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