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Our fearless leader Steve Novella gets the best responses to his posts!

You may recall that Steve has been criticizing a certain homeopath named John Benneth for his incredible flights of–shall we say?–fancy used in defending homeopathy. As a result, Mr. Benneth (whose website is called The Science of Homeopathy) has produced a series of amazing videos that he’s posted on YouTube. Although we have a very serious mission here at SBM, we are not without a sense of humor, and that’s why we thought our readers might be interested in the sorts of commentary we have received in response to some of our efforts. The first video is called HOMEOPATHY: Jew of Nazi Medicine:

Note how Benneth likens the criticism of his pseudoscience to the persecution of Jews by the Nazis. When you see something like this, you know that Godwin’s Law has been thoroughly invoked. The second video is just as outrageous and probably NSFW given that it drops the N-word. Don’t play it if that offends you. You have been warned:

You heard it right. In this one, Mr. Benneth compares Steve’s criticism of his discussions of homeopathy to the breaking of an “uppity slave” by a slave breaker.

I have to admit that I’m a bit envious here. Steve gets all the best crank attacks directed at him for his efforts. It’s not as though a certain particularly insolent fellow hasn’t also had his fun with John Benneth’s woo-ful description of “how homeopathy works.” It’s also not as though I haven’t had some fun with certain homeopaths on this very blog.

Oh, well. I guess that, as number two, I’ll just have to try harder in the future. (I guess I’ll always have J. B. Handley.) In any case, one almost has to wonder if Benneth’s second video is a joke, given that it was posted on April Fools’ Day. What I fear is that it is not, although I do like his playing around with camera techniques and special effects in this one.

Posted in: Homeopathy, Humor

Leave a Comment (31) ↓

31 thoughts on “Our fearless leader Steve Novella gets the best responses to his posts!

  1. wurmfood says:

    This guy is fantastic. Things like this just make him all the better to listen to:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JgzeIjgOwPI

  2. ZenMonkey says:

    I’m not offended exactly, but I think my jaw broke when it dropped. I guess he’s in good company with the Catholics.

  3. weez says:

    oh man, you gotta get Benneth’s MOLA vid in here. It mightn’t be so Novellacentric, but sweet bloody JEEEEZUS is it ever the best example of Benneth in full-on, forgot-his-meds, full-canvas-jacket wackjob mode.

  4. austinap says:

    I actually feel bad for this guy, after watching his MOLA video I’m not sure he ever had a chance.

  5. arclight says:

    What an amazing nutjob!

  6. pmoran says:

    So Novella has been charged with “shutting him up”?

    Prove him wrong. Call the bluff. Invite him to present a sampling of his best evidence here.

  7. Ken Hamer says:

    Man, this guy could be the best thing ever to have happened as far as discrediting homeopathy. Most people interested in using homeopathic “remedies” would likely be well scared off by this guy.

    Reminds me of a T-shirt I once saw that said “Find a purpose in life. Be a bad example.”

  8. BillyJoe says:

    “Man, this guy could be the best thing ever to have happened as far as discrediting homeopathy”

    Perhaps he is actually anti homoeopathy.
    Is there any evidence that he is actually a homoeopath?
    Is he perhaps a sceptic in disguise?
    A wolf in sheep’s clothing?

    Okay, no.

  9. zed says:

    @pmoran

    He would just use that as “proof” that Homeopathy works i.e.: “SBM invited me to post about Homeopathy, so they must believe it, therefore it works!”

    -

    Too bad I can’t see Youtube Vids at work, I’ll have to wait until later this morning to check this out.

  10. David Gorski says:

    Prove him wrong. Call the bluff. Invite him to present a sampling of his best evidence here.

    An interesting thought. I am, however, worried that Benneth wouldn’t be able to write a coherent article.

  11. David Gorski says:

    Actually, I must admit that the MOLA video is rather amusing in a bizarre way.

  12. Dick Cheney says:

    “His name is Steven Novella, better known as Doctor No!”

    This has gotta be a spoof. Maybe one of Dr No’s old med school buddies with a fake moustache?

  13. dtrgzed says:

    Well first off, Im amazed no-one believes this guy. First off, he wears glasses and has a mustache. Also, the evidence he presents, its extremely quality and science and stuff. You know, science with the writing and the words with the things.

  14. Kristen says:

    This guy is drunk when he does these videos…right? Right?

    If I were a proponent of homeopathy I would be embarrassed to be associated with this whack job.

  15. anoopbal says:

    The best that comes out of this video is that SBM should do more of video blogs. I was reading other stuff while listening to his crap.

    SBM, looking into videocast or podcast any soon?

  16. daedalus2u says:

    I am unable to watch the video at work, but the descriptions of it sound very much like narcissistic injury and narcissistic rage, the same type of rage invoked when people go “postal”, or when they have road rage. Rage of this type does not have a rational basis, it is pure feeling. Such individuals really do feel as if they have been injured akin to how they imagine Jews were injured in the Holocaust. Of course these feelings have no basis in reality, only in the delusional world view of the raging individual. As in going postal and in road rage, any response to the perceived injury is felt to be appropriate, even shooting random individuals. Individuals experiencing this type of rage are very dangerous to themselves and to everyone else. They perceive the objects of their rage as non-human, and so can kill them with no compunction.

    This is the same type of narcissistic injury that is going on in the Catholic Church Hierarchy from being called to task for allowing pedophile priests to continue abusing children. Abrahamic religions are all top-down hierarchies. Truth comes from God, is delivered to His Prophets, who wrote it in His Bible. Social power comes from God, from the top of the social hierarchy. Those lower in the hierarchy are answerable only to those higher in the hierarchy. God is answerable to no one, the Pope is answerable only to God, the Cardinals are answerable only to the Pope, and so on.

    I just blogged about the recent comparison by the Catholic Church Hierarchy of criticism received for enabling pedophile priests to Antisemitism and include some more background on narcissistic rage.

    http://daedalus2u.blogspot.com/2010/04/i-call-goodwins-law.html

    This is very clearly narcissistic injury, very clearly the Catholic Church Hierarchy feels grievously wounded, as wounded as they imagine Jews must have felt when (falsely) accused of a Blood Libel. This feeling that the two injuries are comparable is pure delusion. However, in a sense, being moved to the bottom of the social hierarchy is “the same”, you can’t get lower than the bottom. The false Blood Libel against the Jews moved Jews to the bottom, the exposure of the true enabling of pedophile priests by the Catholic Church Hierarchy moves those enablers to the bottom too (or should in any just system, but producing a “just” system is not the goal of any social hierarchy. The only goal is maintaining the power of those at the top.)

    Social power in such a hierarchy is a zero-sum. There are only so many people, a person is either above you, or below you. If you are to move up the social hierarchy, others have to be removed from above you, either by moving down, or by dying. Since power comes from the top, one’s status depends on how well one has supported those above one in the social hierarchy. If you follow orders in lock-step fashion, then you are a loyal follower and will move up. If you don’t, then you are disloyal and are moved down. Loyalty is the “normal” way to move up the social hierarchy. Moving up by doing anything else is perceived as “gaming” the social hierarchy. Of course, once you are on top, then what ever you did was right.

    At the bottom are people who don’t play that particular social hierarchy game. In the Abrahamic religions, those would be non-believers. You can be lower than that, if you are made into an object of hatred. This is what Antisemitism did to the Jews, it moved them to below the bottom of the Catholic Church social Hierarchy, to where they were subhuman. This is what slavery did to Africans, this is what bigots do to their objects of bigotry, dehumanize them, hate them, so as to move them into the sub-human category of their social hierarchy. This is what the Catholic Church Hierarchy is afraid of, being moved to the bottom of the social hierarchy.

    Because children have no social power, they are at the bottom of every social hierarchy. To the extent that their parents protect them, they have the social power of the parents. In the Catholic Church, that social power position is still way below that of priests. This is why there was no motivation on the part of the Catholic Church Hierarchy to protect children from pedophile priests, the children were at the bottom of the power structure. Their welfare was irrelevant to the power structure of the Hierarchy.

    Where do homeopaths fit? They are at the bottom of any SBM based medical hierarchy, and will stay there because the SBM hierarchy is based on facts and logic, not social power or belief. The quacks are unable to compete with facts and logic, so they attempt to compete with social weapons, trying to bully, trying to instill hatred, trying to discredit SBM with lies and gossip. This is what Conservatives are trying to do with liberals, move them to the bottom with lies. The “death panel” meme is an example of that, the equivalent of the Blood Libel against the Jews. A false accusation designed to instill hatred and move your opponent down in the social hierarchy.

    This is a generic problem with human social systems, there is only so much “social power”, and that is the ultimate resource that can be used to get everything else that humans value, mates, money, food, etc. Gaming the system via social interactions is always easier than accomplishing what ever real tasks are (said to be) required for advancement. This causes a lot of problems in science, politics, work environments, and in just about all human activities.

  17. daijiyobu says:

    Did I hear “cryptomolecular?” Hidden / secret molecules? So, how do you know they’re there?

    [See the film Mystery Men -- Q: "how do you know your invisible if you only become invisible when no one is around?" A: "you just FEEL IT"].

    That damn wind in the background is quite obscuring, it needs a narrative:

    “as the elements erode what is left of one man’s mentality…”

    Oh, you evil Dr. NovellAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAhhhhh.

    Someone PLEASE do a parody of this guy with him wearing full pirate regalia.

    PLEASE!

    -r.c.

  18. Versus says:

    For those readers who don’t want to suffer the agony of sitting through two videos of John Benneth (“LLC”), here’s a summary:

    Homeopathy is the Jew of Nazi medicine. Homoeopathy kills cancer cells, yet Yale University has sent Dr. Steven Novella to break Benneth like an uppity slave. Benneth is resisting because he is, like all of us, one of God’s n-words. Dr. Novella is Dr. No, but Benneth won’t call him “doctor” because “doctor” means teacher in Greek. Dr. Novella is a neurologist at Yale Medical School but he doesn’t have any patients and all his meds are poisonous, and he makes a lot of money from peddling them. Dr. Novella also doesn’t know anything about neurology and is using science as a front. Profit-driven Big Pharma, which petro-chemically synthesizes its products, is behind a well-funded campaign to destroy America. Dr. Novella has been nuked, but is still a zombie. He has also been crushed under a rock. Yale University fell on top of this same rock. Dr. Novella is unsuited to be an underwear model at Macy’s [perhaps because he is a crushed zombie?]. Medical malpractice is the third leading cause of death. Something or other is clinging like an alcoholic clings to his bottle. Bologna is in Italy.

    Oh, I almost forgot. According to Benneth, homeopathy has psychological effects on humans.

    I think we can all agree with that last statement.

  19. Sullivan says:

    I couldn’t get the right channel to work. I couldn’t tell if my headphones were bad or there was a problem with the video.

    To test it, I fired up a sound file. In this case, “all that Jazz” from “Chicago”.

    I found that it is the video with the bad sound.

    I also found it was a very interesting juxtaposition. A song from a musical about shams using the media covering a video about…

  20. SnakePlisken says:

    This video is either:

    a) Pure comedic gold
    b) The best troll ever
    c) All of the above
    d) NOVELLLAAAAA!!!!!!!!!

  21. Davdoodles says:

    I suspect this Benneth fellow is living proof that Lithium Carbonate is not effective at homeopathic diluutions.
    .

  22. Versus – thanks for the summary. I was curious, but I can seldom stomach listening to the false persecution/nazi gambit.

    I get the feeling your version is much more amusing.

  23. LindaRosaRN says:

    John Benneth has got to be homeopathy’s own worst enemy. Next to Dr. Novella, that is. Thank you, Dr. Novella!

  24. Sastra says:

    I finally watched this. Omg.

    From dialogue to production values, it’s perfect: we have, at last, found the new Edward D. Wood, Jr.

    Pull the strings!

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  26. ScarySkwerl says:

    Benneth is channelling Officer Slater in “Superbad” when he plays with pronouncing Dr. Novella’s name… This has GOT to be a parody!

  27. M Wilson MD says:

    Does N-word stand for “Nuked” ?

  28. quintupularity says:

    Wait, how remarkable! Homeopathic studies have shown that water is good for plants! It makes wheat grow! I’m convinced. Thanks, Mr. Benneth, for opening my eyes to the astonishing marvel of homeopathy!

    Water is good for plants! Who knew?

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