Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Doggerel #34: "They Do It For Free!"

Welcome back to "Doggerel," where I ramble on about words and phrases that are misused, abused, or just plain meaningless.

One completely off-topic thing woos like to bring up is whether or not a "psychic," "healer," or whatever gets paid for what they claim they do. If I were to build a car for someone for free, I don't see how that would change whether or not the car works. Either the car runs or it doesn't. Either the "psychic" can perform or he can't. Either the "healer's" treatments work, or they don't. Reality is not dictated by money.

I suspect this doggerel has a lot to do with one of the straw men woos like to beat on: Despite what they may think, skeptics don't believe all psychics, quacks, etcetera are conscious frauds. I suspect most woos sincerely believe what they say. People can believe all sorts of silly things. But, like money, belief doesn't play much of a role in determining reality.

We form conclusions based on evidence. That's what the James Randi Paranormal Challenge is all about: Proving that it works under tight experimental conditions designed to filter out all the stuff that allows us to fool ourselves. So far, all the best evidence suggests that this sort of stuff doesn't work. The woos are free to prove otherwise. And that's all that matters.

Getting a worthless item for free isn't exactly a wonderful deal.


Doggerel Index


The Jap people are ashamed said...

I am japenese. When I read your comments on the Ionic Breeze it was outrageous. You obiously dont like western medicines and hate your haratage. I bet you dont believe that tea can help cancer(now evidence). If the U.S states goverment said that a house living under major powerlines was under or on the limit you would suggest it to your kids. You arnt a chemisist because 03 changes its proporties from 02. Just like Hydroginated fats do closely the same thing but do diffrent things. I bet you eat the limit of 2 mgs of Trans Fat a day because you think its safe for now. Ill laugh when it creates wear many years from now and it is unhealthy for everyday use. You dont have the brains to see everyday issues build up. What was your rationale to study and do your homework? I know you wernt honors like I am. You shouldnt be known as a smart man.

Bronze Dog said...