Friday, November 06, 2009

Respectful Insolence Is A "Science" Blog?

Respectful Insolence is reportedly a "science" blog. Orac the blog author is a medical doctor, a surgeon who uses the internet to do nothing more than trash and smear anyone who disagrees with his "scientific" views or whom he disapproves of for any reason. Most of his blog comments are unsupported by anything other than childish name calling. His 1o most recent blogs starting with November 6, 2009:

Despite the comment title Orac actually spends the first few paragraphs attacking Suzanne Somers before moving on to smear Desiree Jennings. When he does get around to attacking Ms Jennings, the beautiful cheerleader who developed dystonia after receiving a seasonal flu vaccine shot, he challenges her medical diagnosis, apparently without ever actually meeting her himself. The failure to actually meet the person whose diagnosis he ridicules does not stop the pompous Orac from insinuating that whatever is wrong with Ms Jennings it is all in her head. Of course the doctor who actually did see and treat Ms Jennings is called incompetent. In Orac world incompetent doctors actually see the patient they are diagnosing and treating. Competent doctors/surgeons simply read things on the internet and mock the individual from the certainty and clarity of their keyboard. I guess medical practices are different in the US of A than what we are used to here in Canada.

This one touches on "science" only in the sense that playground tough guy Orac brags about a writer at the Age of Autism " it's just J.B. spewing the same pseudoscientific nonsense that I've slapped down over and over." Oooooh. Lots of science there Orac.

Orac coasted on this one, simply directing readers to another blog which, like Respectful Insolence, confuses schoolyard name calling for skepticism.

The title says it all here. Orac's science consists of calling anyone who asks questions about vaccine safety quacks and pseudo-experts. But there is more Orac style "science":

cranks, staring down the barrel, if you will, of a crank shotgun, one barrel being the anti-vaccine movement in general, ... unreason, conspiracy mongering, and pseudoscience ... the arrogance of ignorance ... endanger public health .. J.B. Handley's misogyny/

This is the first Orac post in which he speculates about Desiree Jennings medical condition without having actually met with her. In this he offers the following speculation about this woman that he has never met, based on records the he thinks MIGHT be hers:

If it is, it's seeming more and more likely that Jennings probably doesn't have a "true" dystonia, but rather one with a significant psychogenic overlay.

There it is. The scientist/surgeon/blogger speculates that Ms Jennings condition is all in her head, without having met her and without even being sure that records he is relying on are hers or that they represent her complete medical file.

In this comment Orac refers readers to some outside sources dealing with Holocaust Denial. The Holocaust is indisputable historical fact and the deniers of the Holocaust deserve to be called out for denying the atrocities of the Holocaust but it is not science and Orac acknowledges that.

The name calling in the title is repeated and throughout the comment with some intellectual analysis Orac style thrown in for good measure: "Bullshit, Billy. Bullshit."

In this one Orac spreads his usual litany of insults rambling away from the Somers book to attack anyone who dares question the safety of vaccines. The usual unsubstantiated ranting takes place:. quackery and medical pseudoscience, empty-brained celebrities, the bubble of woo-friendly southern California, celebrity woo promotion.

In this one Orac, who suggests that Desiree Jennings difficulties following vaccination were psychogenic without meeting her, and without being sure the documentation he examined was actually hers, takes JB Handley to task over his criticisms of Amy Wallace of Wired. He then goes on to indicate, without substantiation, that the entire anti-vaccination movement is misogynist.

I skipped a few because they were covered in the first posts on this page dealing with Desiree Jennings or self congratulatory bragging from Orac. In the Brent Spiner post he mocks Spiner and insults him with his usual insults: Malibu-inspired woo, ... Brent Spiner appeared on the surface to have drunk deeply of the anti-vaccine Kool Aid. But was it just on the surface, or is Spiner really an anti-vaccinationist? Let's see if we can figure it out. I waded into the Twitter exchange that followed--and was appalled.

Respectful insolence is not a science blog. It is, for the most part, simply a forum for attacking anyone who asks any questions about vaccines. Silly insults are a staple at RI, insults hurled by a medical doctor who questions the diagnosis of a woman he has never met, using records which he is not sure are hers. It is a vaccine cult blog where all vaccines are assumed to be safe and effective and where anyone who dares question a vaccine is mocked with childish schoolyard insults. But you will have to look long and hard to find any actual science. And there is nothing respectful about his insolence, nothing at all.

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Anonymous said...

It is downright scary that such a nasty, mean spirited person such as this A-HOLE Orac is a medical doctor. Who in their right mind would seek the services of such a childish person? I wonder if his patients know that he has the maturity level of a 12 year old and spends much of his time writing a blog that does nothing but bash anyone who disagrees with him. No ethical doctor would write a blog like that no matter what their opinion of certain medical treaments were.

Jake Crosby said...

It's not just him, but all of "Science"Blogs. It's one great, big, nasty weed planted in the blogosphere by the Seed Media Group of utter tools headed up by pretentious blowhard, Adam Bly.

Dawn said...

Orac feels threatened. He is an oncologist...meaning he makes money off of the vaccine-injured when they finally develop cancer. No more vaccines means no more business for him. He is as low as low can get.

UrsulaMinor said...

You guys are so CUTE. First off, Blogs aren't supposed to be bastions of unbiased reporting. Secondly, Not agreeing with anti-vaccine rhetoric doesn't make ORAC untruthful- just honest. Thirdly, he references most of what he says, and prefaces his speculation by saying "This is speculation" - a blog is OPINION, and is taken as OPINION. If you were looking for hard science, then you should go to a reputable scientific journal, not the opinions of a person of unverifiable credentials. I don't suppose, however, that this will get past comment moderation though - it was worth a shot. If we are taking shots at people though, I'd note that Handely and co. have said worse things about Ms. Wallace than Orac says about anybody.

Anonymous said...

"You guys are so CUTE. First off, Blogs aren't supposed to be bastions of unbiased reporting. "

Phhfft! That's why its called OpinionBlogs, not ScienceBlogs right? That's why Orac 'slaps down' every opinion deviating from his own warped view, right? Please, Scienceblogs is allopathic propoganda masquerading as science, as if we all can't see it exactly for what it is. My guess is Gorski was that kid in high school everyone picked on and beat up, and now he's out to get his geek revenge on all the cool people.