Opinion by Consumer Advocate Tim Bolen
Dr. Oz, on one of his shows, had invited one of the top Icons in the self-styled “Skeptic” internet movement, Steven Novella MD, to debate Alternative Medicine. Oz, literally, made a fool of Novella – or, perhaps, I should say “Oz let Novella show what a fool he actually is…”
I chuckled all the way through the show.
When I first started investigating the leader of the New England Skeptic group, Steven Novella MD, I was visually captured by a video of him being interviewed by the self-styled “Amazing Randi” (a whole other story). I had to look closely at the video, and even play it back a few minutes, because I was struck with the impression that Novella was wearing a hand-made toupee constructed from a piece of light grey high-impact Family Room carpeting.
More, it looked as though he was lightly wearing Tammy Faye eye makeup.
I wasn’t surprised, and certainly not dismayed at Novella’s personal appearance – for I’ve met a lot of quackbusters, so I amused to abnormality. A strange form of pompous-ass-ity seems to be a connecting link between them.
Novella has been on my radar for a while as I put together the pieces of who the 2011 quackbuster team really are. I graph how they operate. He fits, easily, into the usual quackbuster pattern of fake resume, crap career, and, like Stephen Barrett, a molten hatred for those in the health professions who, through their own education and abilities, accomplish positive things and get deserved credit for it.
Novella claims to be a neurology professor at Yale University, and throws the name “Yale” around like he was throwing seed to the morning chickens – but, to me, that is an outright fabrication. Novella, evidence shows, works for a medical center that “rents” the name “Yale” from the University, who then, assuming the monthly payments are up to date, gets to claim that all their staff doctors are, in fact, professors at Yale (insert bad smell here).
In short, Novella is just another justifiably self-disappointed crap-career loser…
The reality of Novella, easily found, is that he testifies for insurance companies, and that seems to be the extent of his practice. I get a picture of Novella saying “that hatchet imbedded in Mr. Smith’s head by his employer is causing no neurological damage, and it is clear that Mr. Smith is faking his claims of pain… His employer was right to fire him when he didn’t show up for work the next day. Mr. Smith clearly self-inflicted his injury… and has previously demonstrated his social recalcitrance when he failed to institutionalize his autistic child, actually claiming that the autism started after a series of 152 vaccinations were given in one day by a pediatrician. It is clear that Mr. Smith, and his wife, caused the autism themselves, in that they are clearly genetically defective… blah, blah, blah…, blah, blah, blah…, blah, blah, blah…, blah, blah, blah…, blah, blah, blah…, blah, blah, blah…”
You know – the usual quackbuster testimony.
But, as you can tell, I had not yet taken this self-inflated carpet-head to task yet, skewering him, as it were, with the truth of his reality. Frankly, I was looking for something more – and I am still looking.
What am I looking for? Knowing what I know about Randi’s sexual proclivities, that Randi/Novella video, and Novella’s obvious relationship with James Randi, has raised red flags with me about the ENTIRE pseudo-skeptic movement.
The old quackbuster team leaders have faded into obscurity, and a somewhat known, but little regarded, quackbuster sub-group has reached ascendancy. They call themselves the “Skeptics,” and true skeptics they are not.
But, before I got around to Steve Novella…
Dr. Oz called him on his show last Tuesday, April 26th, 2011, and, quite simply, made “carpet-head” look like the pretentious, bloated, mental pissant he really is, in a simple half hour segment – dismissing Novella, and everything he claims and stands for, in a nice, pat-Stevie-on-the-head, gentlemanly manner in front of a nationwide audience.
Good job, Oz.
As a result, neither Novella, nor his pseudo-skeptic hangers-ons, have managed to get by the sheer shock of their total rejection of their nonsense “evidence-based” health care offering by a major media source, and a nationally recognized doctor with a REAL University (Columbia) affiliation – Dr. Oz.
Now, of course, the pseudo-skeptics, have their combined panties in a bunch. All over the internet they are calling Oz names, using, of course, their made-up internet names – not their real ones (They are terrified of being personally identified). These people are not known for manliness.
Each of the pseudo-skeptics, I estimate, has between fifteen and thirty different made-up internet identities. For them, I guess, if they are losing a factual or intellectual argument to someone in a discussion group they just bring five of their other identities online to back them up, pretending these are really five other people agreeing with them.
So, why are these people important to us in the North American Health Freedom Movement?
The quackbuster masters cannot field an army of substantial people. No one with any real credentials wants to be associated with them in any way. Just look at the examples you see.
What they have been forced to do is to put up shams. Using fake identities and attacking from that kind of position has served them well. They do two things: (1) They use what’s known as “link-farming” to control search engine placement for their articles. (2) It is from that fake identity move that this group controls the health care portion of Wikipedia. My estimate is that only about seven or eight of them, each using between fifteen to thirty fake names, make up MOST of the Wikipedia health care structure (editors, administrators, committee members, and perhaps even arbitrators at the top. And Wikipedia management is too dumb to be able to figure out how to weed them out.
But, the Doctor’s Data v Barrett, et al case has this group very rattled. VERY rattled. For, I predict, when DISCOVERY starts, and Stephen Barrett gets dragged into a video-taped Deposition, the very first questions to Barrett will involve questions asking him HOW his crap articles manage to appear on the first page of search engines. When those questions are answered, and the Federal Judge will FORCE Barrett to answer, I predict that that “carpet-head,” Steve Novella, “Orac the Nipple Ripper,” and a not-so-short-list of other pseudo-skeptics, who think they are in hiding, are going to have to lawyer up to defend themselves as Co-Defendants in a Chicago Federal Court.
They better have a quarter-million, each, handy, to retain counsel quickly.
You can view the Dr. Oz segment, “Why your doctor is afraid of Alternative Medicine,” where he pats Novella on his carpeted head, here.
Tim Bolen – Consumer Advocate