Archive for December, 2013

CANCER QUACKERY!!

Posted in MEDICOPOLITICS with tags , , , , on December 25, 2013 by drjgelb

I read a Blog recently, where readers and author were locked in a battle royale over alternative cancer treatments.

Here’s my comment:

People with cancer and their loved ones are highly vulnerable, frightened and often desperate, not only to avoid untimely death but especially a painful or horrific one. So powerful is this primal fear of a horrible death associated with cancer that people from all backgrounds suspend their critical faculties and fail to detect the thousands of predatory, psychopathic individuals hunting for the weak & desperate to rip-off, defraud and exploit. Add to this the sad fact that Science has failed to ensure or demand that scientific method is taught to and understood by all from early on in school and that science be treated as a core subject, just like reading, writing and arithmetic. Without a true understanding of the significance and meaning of scientific evidence, all subsequent discussion is handicapped as an uninformed participant will likely raise examples that do not fulfil criteria as scientific evidence and they will not understand why science rejects their contribution. This naturally predisposes to the development of a search for alternative reasons for the rejection, hence the proliferation of myriad conspiracy theories essentially blaming greed and power as the motivators for science, rather than seeing multiple, varied motivating factors underpinning all human endeavours. To reduce the influence of the negative factors, science insists on several safeguards all too often missing from other forms of evidence. These include multiple peer review by experts not identified to the scientist, editorial board scrutiny, experimental replication to confirm findings, journal publication and invitation to criticism, move to Open Source publication to avoid conflicts of interest or favouritism and the current movement towards publication of all trials performed per topic by that author’s group, along with their raw data, so that anyone can analyse the data by any accepted statistical method in order to verify findings and so both negative and positive findings can be compared.

So, science is tightening up, leaving an even wider gap between it and pseudoscience. Alternative medical approaches to Cancer are unproven not because of Big Pharma. The alternative industry is worth not 1 billion dollars annually but tens of billions, yet the industry invests precious little in proper scientific research. Why is it so? It is entirely due to the need to prevent exposure of profitable commercial products as useless frauds. If no such fears existed, Universities would jump at the chance to accept funding for scientific study, with all the benefits that can produce for the Public, the University and its students. But unfortunately, alternative treatment promoters and producers cannot be tempted to make independent scientific validation of efficacy a central plank in their business plans, causing its absence from their corporate budgets year after year. National Regulatory Bodies require evidence of safety but not efficacy with any treatment not labeled a pharmaceutical. This applies to the vast majority of alternatives. Safe? Usually. Effective? Untested!

Whoever champions an unproven treatment and trumpets claims for its effectiveness without scientific proof, STOP RIGHT NOW! Go to the source of the treatment and demand it be scientifically trialled and published to allow criticism. Demand publication of the raw data so the findings can be verified. Demand that others attempt to replicate the findings. Then and only then can anyone trust what they read or hear about the alternative treatment of Cancer or any other medical condition.

DISCRETION IS ONLY OK IF ACTUALLY USED!

Posted in GUN CONTROL, CRIMINAL JUSTICE & THE HORRORS OF THE ADVERSARIAL SYSTEM! on December 24, 2013 by drjgelb

Fantastic! About time!!

SHRINKRAPT

I like the Melbourne Criminal Lawyers Blog. It’s refreshing because it’s honest and therefore stands in contrast to too many in that profession.

http://melbournecriminallawyersblog.com/2013/11/12/police-discretion-in-the-diversion-process/#comment-3353

I found the above post worrying. The Police bullying the public and the Judiciary!

Below is my comment:

Jerome Gelb says : December 24, 2013 at 6:26 pm
Dear Mr Doogue,

It seems to me that the time for humility in the face of VICPOL undermining the very basis for the distinction between conviction and non-conviction, is well and truly over. If recent Attorneys General have sat on their hands, perhaps the State’s lawyers need to stand up and pull him off those hands! This is exactly the sort of abuse of process that undermines public confidence in Police and feeds the widespread mistrust of Police Command. Few employers will give a job to someone with a criminal record and the public clearly lack a clear…

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DISCRETION IS ONLY OK IF ACTUALLY USED!

Posted in GUN CONTROL, CRIMINAL JUSTICE & THE HORRORS OF THE ADVERSARIAL SYSTEM! with tags , , , , on December 24, 2013 by drjgelb

I like the Melbourne Criminal Lawyers Blog. It’s refreshing because it’s honest and therefore stands in contrast to too many in that profession.

http://melbournecriminallawyersblog.com/2013/11/12/police-discretion-in-the-diversion-process/#comment-3353

I found the above post worrying. The Police bullying the public and the Judiciary!

Below is my comment:

Jerome Gelb says : December 24, 2013 at 6:26 pm
Dear Mr Doogue,

It seems to me that the time for humility in the face of VICPOL undermining the very basis for the distinction between conviction and non-conviction, is well and truly over. If recent Attorneys General have sat on their hands, perhaps the State’s lawyers need to stand up and pull him off those hands! This is exactly the sort of abuse of process that undermines public confidence in Police and feeds the widespread mistrust of Police Command. Few employers will give a job to someone with a criminal record and the public clearly lack a clear understanding of why a conviction is or isn’t recorded for similar crimes.

Consider the above with another discretionary sleight of hand practiced by VICPOL, about which I wrote to the Opposition Leader and Shadow Police Minister just prior to the defeat of the Brumby Government. Police Stations do not have signs warning the public that a Counter Report of a crime will not trigger a Police investigation and that only a formal Statement may do so. Several Police have confirmed this as fact. Counter reports are filed but not acted upon. There are too few resources, say Police. A friend’s son was the victim of an armed robbery by a masked man at a train station. He had a bike, iPod and cash stolen. As the culprit ran from the scene, his ski-mask fell off and he was recognised. My friend took his shaken son to a local Police Station and a Counter report was made. The Constable wrote the details down and said the report would be investigated. The next evening, at my urging, my friend rang the Constable to enquire re progress. He was met with the aggressive comment that no investigation would be mounted because, “you didn’t want to make a Statement”, which my friend strongly denied. He demanded that his son make a formal Statement that night and on its completion, the Constable noted, “this sounds like an armed robbery” and promised to hand the case to Detectives in the morning. By the end of the next day, a raid and arrest had been effected and stolen property located. The culprit was charged and duly convicted. None of this would have happened had I not known about the unwritten rule, “No Statement, No Investigation” and no chance of the crime adding to crime statistics.

Even when a Statement is made, there is no guarantee that a crime will be pursued. Another friend was rung by his son, who informed him that he and his sister had seen a man scratch and vandalise the family car, legally parked outside their home. They had shouted at the man, who nonchalantly strolled off, leaving thousands of dollars damage. They followed him from a safe distance and guided their father to the man’s location by phone. My friend confronted the man and receiving total denials, rang the Police. The man was arrested and my friend’s late-teen kids made Statements that they had witnessed the attack on the family car. The Police stated that the man would be charged after the complaint was investigated. Neither promised outcome occurred. The Police claimed that two eyewitness accounts and the fact that the man was known to Police, was insufficient evidence to warrant charging him. My incredulous friend is now contemplating a formal complaint.

It seems as if “discretion” has been far too broadly implemented in practice and citizens’ concerns are being ignored. The number one reason callers ring John Feyne to speak to Commissioner Ken Lay every third week on ABC 774, is to complain that their reported matters have been ignored, sometimes for years. The Commissioner says to the callers to ring him if the Station Snr Sgt. won’t help but Ken Lay wouldn’t have enough hours in the day to take the calls, let alone action them!

Lawyers, you maybe able to call more volubly for a fix for this fiasco. Please do!!

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