Apr 122013

The fundamental characteristic of science is honest discourse. Dissenting opinion is encouraged, engaging with dissenting views is pretty much mandatory, at least if they are well founded.

Skeptics usually follow the same principle with blog comments and the like. Obvious trolls do not usually get shut down unless their agitation becomes a significant burden on the site.

This is by stark contrast with the world of quackery where nasty reality is not often not allowed to intrude.

A new worst offender has come up in the shape of Burzynski shill and conspiracy whacknut Eric Merola.

Merola ran a Q&A session around a screening of his propaganda movie. Some skeptics attended. When they challenged on the provable absence of any randomised controlled trials, or any published outcomes from the sixty Phase II trials registered by Burzynski, there was an immediate cut to sinister music and obfuscatory web links that have already been addressed, content that does not address the issue f RCTs or failure to publish. This Gish Gallop is a standard tactic of Burzynski shills – every time they are challenged on the lack of published evidence they come up with the same list of conference abstracts, junk journals and so on, and every time they get the same response: that is not proper published evidence, where is the trial data?

To find Merola editing a video to blatantly misrepresent the position of the reality-based community is hardly a surprise. Needless to say, people asked questions in the Comments section of the YouTube video.

And needless to say the comments were deleted.

Not just deleted, the commenters were immediately and summarily blocked from making any comment whatsoever on that video.

Hilariously, he then claimed that “skeptics don’t want to argue” – despite the fact that we have been arguing with him constantly on Twitter over these self-same misrepresentations! Prize for best exposure of this idiocy goes to Adam Jacobs:

It’s astounding that Merola thinks he can get away with this kind of nonsense. Pretending that the ruthless suppression of any awkward questions like “where are the randomised controlled trials” and “where are the published results of the clinical trials conducted on humans, per the Helsinki Protocol” somehow equates to us not wanting to debate.

I think this is going to get really ugly when BBC’s Panorama runs an actual documentary (rather than a propaganda film) that is apparently in the works. This was expected soon but seems to be delayed, possibly because of the FDA raid about which Burzynski’s shills have made dark mumblings, and which was immediately followed by the removal of [virtually] all reference to antineoplastons and trials from the content of the Burzynski clinic website.

Tijuana beckons.

Edit 2/11/2013: A Burzynski shill points out that the list of publications still contains references to antineoplastons, as if this means they are still being promoted or sold, which of course they aren’t. Happy to clarify. All pages related to the sale or promotion of ANPs were removed following the FDA visit.

  One Response to “The dishonesty of Eric Merola, Burzynski shill”

  1. [...] of quackery. It won’t surprise you to know that this is exactly how homeopaths and Stanislaw Burzynski’s PR operation behave as [...]

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