Re: Debunk All Religiosity Equally (D.A.R.E.)

From: Mike Lorrey (
Date: Tue Jul 10 2001 - 06:19:07 MDT

Party of Citizens wrote:
> Is the placebo effect a "psychic effect" in itself? Isn't it "mind over
> matter", ie PK? The truth is out there.

THere are various processes that could have placebo effects. I prefer to
look at 'placebo' as a scientists explaination for something he has not,
or is unwilling to, vigorously examine due to the narrow confines of
his/her experimental hypothesis, while other scientists will ascribe
what others would call a placebo effect to some causal agent without
proving any actual linkage mechanism beyond a synchronicity of events. A
case in point is one recently released which purports to show that low
level radiation from nuclear plants causes significant rates of fetal
congenital defects, by looking at a population local to a nuke plant
during its start up and shut down. They claim this 'low level radiation'
is the culprit, despite there being other more significant sources of
radiation, including the sun, radon in their homes, and the radioactive
fly ash in the concrete of the buildings they live and work in. They
also fail to consider that the rise in fetal defects could easily be
explained as a stress related phenomenon of media hype inducing
excessive paranoia in pregnant mothers. Another thing they fail to do in
the study is to look for similar rises and falls in fetal congenital
defects in populations around coal plants, since it is a proven fact
that the average coal plant puts out more radiation in its fly ash than
the entire commercial nuke industry does.

In this instance, the likely actual culprit according to Occams Razor,
is stress related to media propaganda. Since stress is a known
contributor to cancer, it follows that it would also be a contributor to
developmental problems in fetuses.

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