The Truth About Water?

Homeopathic_medicineI was thinking about homeopathy today. Again.

Am I the only one who becomes enraged about this topic? I loved the recent Crispian Jago video, “If Homeopathy Works, I’ll Drink My Own Piss”. It was really funny and pointed an excellent finger at the truth behind homeopathy.

There are a number of examples around that make the truth about homeopathy accessible. Crispian’s film, in which he takes some pure piss diluting, discussing and succussing it through to the very common 30c dilution. At which point he drinks it. Fabulous. He points out and explains the Avogadro point too.

Then there is the now classic Mitchell and Webb video imagining with great comic effect a “Homeopathy A&E”.

What makes these films funny for a Skeptic is that we do actually understand the process well enough to mock it and take delight in that mocking. I will, like Tim Minchin, carve a legend on my most sensitive member with a compass if real evidence emerges of homeopathy working beyond placebo. So taking the piss out of the claims is easy.

But I genuinely think that most people don’t have the faintest idea of what the actual manufacturing process is. I say this because on the three or four occasions when I have explained it to a friend, they are invariably “No. Come on. You’re not serious”. Homoeopathy seems to be a generic word for pseudomedicine in general. Of course, there are many people taking homeopathic preparations who are knowledgeable about what they are doing. If deluded.

What I’m saying is that taking the trouble to walk your friends through the process and some of the pseudo science behind homeopathy can bear a positive result. At least in my case. I’m confident that, so far, at least three people are in a more informed position about it, and are more likely to be skeptical about it in any given situation.

Something else you can do is send your credulous bullshit believing friends over to Fair Deal Homeopathy.

Don’t get me wrong, this guy is selling homeopathy. I have done a bit of research and they are very serious about the fact they are a homeopathy business. They sell reasonably priced preparations. Everything is £4.99 including P&P. You just fill out the form with your symptoms and they send you the appropriate remedy.

So why am I promoting a homeopathy shop? It’s because there isn’t even the smallest amount of bullshit anywhere on the site. In fact, there is a quote in the “About” section that says “we won’t lie to you”. This is part of their fair deal. By way of proof, here is the text from their site that tells you how homeopathy works.

Homeopathy works through a complicated interaction with the human body and mind known as the “placebo effect”. The placebo effect is still not fully understood, but is very effective for certain conditions.

THE PLACEBO EFFECT!!! How can you argue with that? I love this site. There are lots of favourite bits, like:

I’m actually ill – can FairDeal Homeopathy help me?
Go to your doctor immediately. Fairdeal Homeopathy will not be able to cure you. However, the placebo effect generated by taking FairDeal Homeopathic products may reduce the unpleasantness of some of the symptoms. Homeopathy of any sort is not a medical treatment, neither is it a substitute for evidence-based medicine and proper medical opinion.

But my absolute favourite is the strap line for the entire business.

Nothing acts as well as Fairdeal Homeopathy

I wish I could find out how much they actually sell. I will attempt to find out more details. I know the name of the guy and intend to interview him if he’s willing. For the moment, take the trouble, if you haven’t already, to explain what homeopathy is, and what it isn’t. I don’t mean convert a believer. I mean educate people who didn’t previously care. They’ll see through it if you can get them to pay enough attention.

I said in a previous post that I think people’s belief systems are like shelves waiting to be filled. Let’s get as many people as possible thinking critically about homeopathy. Let’s give the believers a wall to shout at.

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  1. #1 by Barbara on September 20, 2009 - 23:01

    Ha ha! love the site. We promise nothing, cure nothing but if you are going to get better in a few days, you can credit us with the result… all for £4.99. The first honest charlatans I’ve seen. BRILLIANT!

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