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My favorite brand of snake oil is ...

Displaying poll results.
  1198 votes / 20%
  348 votes / 6%
Goat testicle implants
  622 votes / 10%
Magnet therapy
  894 votes / 15%
Actual snake oil
  1150 votes / 19%
Something else you just don't understand.
  1544 votes / 26%
5756 total votes.
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  • Don't complain about lack of options. You've got to pick a few when you do multiple choice. Those are the breaks.
  • Feel free to suggest poll ideas if you're feeling creative. I'd strongly suggest reading the past polls first.
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My favorite brand of snake oil is ...

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  • Re:"Cleansing" diets (Score:5, Informative)

    by Just Some Guy (3352) <> on Thursday October 03, 2013 @06:00PM (#45030949) Homepage Journal

    A hundred times this. I spent some time as an OR tech, where I'd stand next to the surgeon and hand him instruments, load scalpel blades, hold things, etc. Although I'm not a gastroenterologist, I've seen inside plenty of guts in my life. Never once, except in cases of severe disease, have I ever seen an intestine that looked like the nightmares that "cleansing" advocates describe. Basically, the insides of your intestines are nice and pink and clean unless there happens to be food actively passing through them at the moment. They don't have pockets filled with "toxins", or swallowed marbles, or any of that craziness. They're certainly not spackled with decades worth of unpassed stool that needs to be "purged".

  • Citation, please. (Score:5, Informative)

    by Valdrax (32670) on Thursday October 03, 2013 @06:05PM (#45030987)

    That said, some homeopathic remedies have proven useful in medical research into cures.

    Citation, please. The fundamental theory of homeopathy is unsound and violates fundamental physics. If you have a study with a statistically significant population that shows statistically significant improvements over a placebo, then please put the authors in touch with James Randi, who has offered $1 million to anyone who can prove it to work. []

    The problem is the dosage levels normally used are insufficient to cause that changes claimed.

    At higher dosages, homeopathy stops being homeopathy and starts being herbalism. That's a whole different kettle of fish.

  • Just about... (Score:3, Informative)

    by The Grim Reefer (1162755) on Thursday October 03, 2013 @07:32PM (#45031655)
    Anything labeled "Audiophile" or geared toward audiophiles. The green felt marker was pretty funny. Brilliant pebbles [] is a classic. If taping a bag of rock onto your interconnects isn't funny enough, how about a $30 audiophile grade outlet cover? [] Actually the company Machina Dynamica [] makes all kinds of funny shit. I actually thought this one was a joke at first. Every music listener needs a $6899.75 power cable []. Or a Denon CAT5, sorry AKDL1 dedicated link cable []. You can get a used on for just $400, or refurbished for $999.99. Which sounds pricy, but is a steal compared to the $9999.99 price. Read the comments on both of those. They are pretty funny. You better not skimp on your speaker cable either. These can be had for the low price of $14049.75 [] But if that a little out of your price range, you can always purchase them used for $950.75 less. What a bargin.
  • by issicus (2031176) on Thursday October 03, 2013 @08:18PM (#45031921)
    People use use actual magnets. I have seen it.
  • Re:Homeopathy (Score:4, Informative)

    by narcc (412956) on Thursday October 03, 2013 @08:45PM (#45032037) Journal

    Homeopathy is low-hanging fruit. Everyone knows its nonsense.

    Now, I'll grant that homeopath is still a problem -- but it's not a problem because people believe it. It's a problem because it's difficult for consumers to distinguish products that are homeopathic from real medicine.

    Head down to your local pharmacy and take a walk through the cough and cold isle. You'll notice that the generic and store brands mimic the packaging of the name brand products. That's helpful for consumers.

    Unfortunately, the homeopathic products not only do the same, they go out of their way to hide the fact that they're homeopathic! It's not like the old days when they wrote "Homeopathic" in giant letters on a bright-yellow banner across the top of the box. Today, it's often written in an impossibly thin font, in faint white text near the bottom of the box where you'd expect information like net weight. That's bad for consumers.

    If you don't know enough about the scam to figure out it's homeopathic from the information on the back to identify the product as homeopathic (e.g. 100x is the dilution, sometimes disguised further using a different scale like 50C or 100D) -- or you weren't paying enough attention because you're sick -- you, the guy who already knows homeopathy is nonsense, can easily find yourself at home with a box of useless pills!

    So stop wasting time patting each other on the back for figuring out that homeopathy is nonsense. It wasn't a tough puzzle to solve. No one is impressed with your "intellectual" prowess. Instead, do something productive with that knowledge and call for better packaging standards. Campaign to get that non-medicine out of your local pharmacy. Do anything that will help solve the actual problem.

  • Re:Fiat currency (Score:4, Informative)

    by tbannist (230135) on Friday October 04, 2013 @08:53AM (#45035121)

    Funny sad thing is, the more distortion is imposed on the price/wage structure, the wider the gap between the uber-rich and the very-poor.

    If what you claim is true, then why do countries with higher taxes and more social programs have less inequality? From Wikipedia's List of country by income equality []:

    45.0 United States
    38.1 Japan
    36.0 Italy
    34.0 United Kingdom
    32.7 France
    32.6 Canada
    28.3 Germany
    26.9 Finland
    25.8 Norway
    25.0 Sweden
    24.0 Denmark

    Those are Gini coefficients and higher numbers represent higher levels of inequality. Unless you want to defend the claim that the U.S. actually has more social programs than Sweden and Denmark, you'd have to reasonably conclude that the evidence supports the opposite of your assertion.

The degree of technical confidence is inversely proportional to the level of management.


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