I Challenge Edzard Ernst and the Evil Empire Part IV

Mary Baker Eddy, the founder of Christian Science, also denounced homeopathy, but it was on the same grounds as she dismissed allopathy. Professor Edzard Ernst, first chair of Complementary and Alternative Medicine at the University of Exeter in England does not apply such a global perspective to the subject in his argument against homeopathy. His own assertions seep through his dismissals, sweeping aside the evidence with the same dinghy reasoning.

Just as homeopathy competed with her faith healing, it competes with his, the faith healing of the of the hard drug racket of Pfizer, GlaxoSnithKilne and Aventis.

Ernst is their front man. 
Professor Ernst says the evidence for homeopathic verum is insufficient, and so it must be placebo. Very well then, where is his evidence for homeopathic placebo?

What? Yes of course. You don’t think acccusations of guilt don’t need to be proven, do you? Then why is the placebo charge that bears with it the appellation of sham sotolerated?

The accuser must prove it, or suffer the same penalty. And Ernst can’t prove it!
Look, do the math. Homeopathy (H) not equaling verum (V) is not proof for H equaling placebo (P). P must be proven for H by the same terms demanded for H proving V.
But it gets even worse. Ernst doesn’t define what he means by placebo!
Edzard Ernst makes no reference to scientific tests for placebo. Edzard Ernst gives us no theory for psychosomatic, psychogenic effects. Edzard Ernst does not even define what he means by placebo, because placebo is not a scientific term. It is a word from another kingdom.
There are multiple definitions for placebo. In Latin placebo means “to please.” Placebo is primarily a religious term, the opening words for the evening prayers of Vespers. A placebo used to refer to someone who would come to a funeral for the free food and drink. They could be spotted as phonies because it would be the first words out of their mouths when they entered.
And so it is with Ernst, coming to the funeral he’s set for something he’s trying to kill.
“Homeopathy’s dead,” announces Ernst as he enters the hall of science “Placebo” is his word for admission, and the pseudoscientists he lords it over bow and pray to their golden pseudoscience calf!.
But homeopathy is not dead.

In the first installment of this series, I challenged Edzard Ernst to a duel. I challenged him to match me, study for study, placebo for verum, head to head, arm and leg, mano a mano. He shows us a scientific study that shows homeopathy is “placebo,” I show one for verum, the opposite of placebo.
In medical jargon, medical means a sham, verum means the truth.
And that is what I’m here to do. My colleagues and I are here to reveal the lie, show the truth, heal the sick, cleanse the leper, dissolve the cancer, stop malaria, end diabetes, cast out demons. And as an added bonus, not only will we do that, I will reveal the classical science behind the homeopathic remedy, its modus operandi, how it works and its physical structure, right down to the atom.
In ten years of study I have met every shape of skeptic and argument that the broad breadths of the world can furnish, and never to date have I lowered my arm. Every argument against homeopathy is based on fallacy and lie, as spread by the likes of Edzard Ernst.
Excuse me. I, John Benneth, have lectured in the world’s most prestigious halls before the most learned audiences, such as Hahnemann College in London, and the Cavendish Laboratory at Cambridge. I have stood before the most discerning audiences. But, as one of the world’s greatest physicists was likened to say, no one has yet proven me wrong. And they won’t. They can’t. I am about to reveal to the world one of its greatest mysteries. the supramolecular mechanics of the world greatest medicine, hitherto unknown.
My testaments are supported . . not by entertainers, magicians, pseudoscientists or journalist doctors nor convicted racketeers, as Ernst’s are, but by real scientists, Nobel laureates and professors of the material sciences.
I don’t draw upon the inhabitants of fantasy land like Edzard Ernst, James Randi, John Beddington or David Colquhoun do. I don’t need to posture and pose as if Avogadro finished this sentence, as Michael Shermer and Simon Singh will do. I don’t need to scribble a column for a white washing newspaper like Ben Goldacre does. No! I look to the hard sciences for my answers.
So I can say, without doubt or wish for more, that the case for the world’s greatest medicine is now complete. And with the help of Edzard Ernst, I will spread the truth about homeopathy.
I speak the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth.

Listen, there were times when I thought that money and reputation spoke louder than the truth. The problem was I was not listening, there was quite enough to go around for all to enjoy. Someone is always standing about who doesn’t care about the money, and that’s the guy who blows the whistle.

Listen! and you will learn one of the greatest truths ever known to Man.
John Benneth, PG Hom. – London (Hons.)

COMING SOON: John Benneth’s Structure of Belief


In my last blog, I issued a challenge to a key figure in the case against homeopathy. For every scientific study that shows the biological action of the high dilutes used in homeopathic practice, let him show one that proves it’s a placebo.

Edzard Ernst writes a column in the popular press. His scientific papers are mostly reviews of other people‘s work, such as his “Systematic Review of Systematic Reviews of Homeopathy.” He doesn’t get his hands dirty like Professor Madeleine Ennis of Queens College in Belfast did when she replicated the basophil degranulation test. He not only avoids doing biochemical and biological tests that disprove placebo, he avoids reviewing them. Edzard Ernst just sticks to bad mouthing clinical trials of homeopathy. That way the placebo charge sounds more reasonable. Saying that non cellular systems or lymphocytes can respond to a bedside manner or homeopathic interview doesn’t make much sense, so Ernst pretends there are no pre-clinicals worthy of conisderation. He mostly references either his own previous reviews or those of others who conclude homeopathic placebo and bypasses the intrinsic contradictions.

He claims there is no evidence for homeopathic verum (intrinsically potent, opposite placebo) on the basis that it is not perfect, without stating what the standards are. He does this without addressing studies that show physical distinctions and biological action between solvent verum and the inert vehicle. When confronted with these pre-clinicals, Ernst pushes them aside for lack of credibility on account of some flaw so egregious that reason must transcend any attempt to replicate them. He characterizes specific biological effects in a solvent lacking an expected heterogeneous guest to match them so preposterous that the procedural flaws of pre-clinical tests only highlight the inevitable missing molecule.

Therefore, says Ernst, any result of a physical, biochemical or biological test that shows the action of the substances in question must be the result of the witness’s misperception, bias or deception.
But there is something wrong with this.
Positive assertions are made by both sides of the argument. I say homeopathy is supported by science, both empirically and rationally and the case for homeopathy is complete. He will say it is not. Fine. That’s his opinion. He will say there can not be any real evidence of intrinsic action because there is no scientific explanation for it. Okay, but its not as though we’re empty handed on that score either. We can show that the recorded electromagnetic emissions of the crystalliferous homeopathic solvent is distinguishable from its vehicle, the inert non-crytalliferous solvent. He will say this is nonsense.  Alright, that’s his opinion again, also unsupported by any reference but his own, but we can also show the electromagnetic effects of homeopathics on six different types of biochemical testing, and in tests on cancerous cells. He will repeat his assertion that there is no scientific theory. No, that’s wrong. We can explain liquid aqueous structuring and how it relates to electromagnetic action using supramolecular chemistry and electronics. He’ll say this is all hogwash. Whatever. But . . .