Monday, February 16, 2009

Consciousness Times and myth development

Consciousness Times is the student newspaper for MUM students. I enjoy reading the issues. Often you can see the tension between being young and adventurous and the rules of MUM.

Unfortunately, pseudo-scientific baloney pops up frequently. On their website currently appears an article on "Oil Pulling" as "healing people of all sorts of health problems." Basically it appears that oil pulling is swishing around a bunch of sunflower or sesame oil in your mouth for a few minutes, spit it out and clean your sink. This is claimed to cure or prevent all sorts of ailments from snoring, to high blood pressure, to cancer. Here is the complete article.

From the article:

Also, note that currently one in three people in the USA will probably die of cancer. Dying is not the problem. But dying of great pain, which is what happens with cancer, is. Unfortunately, people are not passing away peacefully like they used to. The average person lives around 70 years. There are around 290,000,000 people in the USA. Assuming they all die in the next 70 years, that means that roughly 4,142,857 people will die each year, on average.

Current estimates say that one in three will die of cancer. That means that roughly 1,380,952 will die of cancer each year. Each cancer patient is on average worth $300,000 (probably more these days). Most of this money goes in the last 6 weeks. That means that cancer in the future is is worth, very, very conservatively, $414,285,600,000 a year! That's over $400 BILLION a year. That's nearly half a TRILLION dollars a year! Plus money spent on research. And because age isn't average, and most people are baby boomers who will likely die in the next few decades these figures are even higher for the next few decades as the baby boomers get old. Sorry, I don't have the references for these figures - they are in my head. Some are from which I hope you have read by now. The real numbers for this are undoubetdly higher.

So, ask yourself, if something that is almost free like oil pulling can endanger this fortune, do you think they wouldn't debunk it? Also, it will help to stop ingesting more toxins.

This is so pitiful. So more people used to die peacefully? Where did that come from? The sloppy reasoning : of course, the medical establishment would debunk it because so much money is at issue. Never mind that there is no evidence to debunk.

We were talking about myth development in the TMO. Wonder if some true believers will be swishing oil around in their mouths next week?

The article ends with a disclaimer:

DISCLAIMER:The information on in this article is not medical science or medical advice. This information is not backed up by scientific evidence. This is just for your information. This information and these products have not been evaluated by the FDA. These products and information are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease, disorder, pain, injury, deformity, or physical or mental condition. Results are not typical. Individual results may vary.

Will people notice that the disclaimer totally contradicts what the article says? Probably not. They will just look at it as something the lawyers required or the government required. Blech.

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