Gagnaleysi er framtíðin
Edzard Ernst er mjög merkilegur maður. Ég rakst á grein eftir hann frá 2001.
Varúð! Ekki fyrir detox-aðdáendur.
IN PRAISE OF THE DATA-FREE DISCUSSION. TOWARDS A NEW PARADIGM.
Editor-in-Chief of FACT and Chair in Complementary Medicine at the University of Exeter, 25 Victoria Park Road, Exeter EX2 4NT, UK.
Eight years ago, when I decided to go full-time into complementary/alternative medicine (CAM) research, I was a narrow-minded and short-sighted man! Narrow-minded because I had been under the impression that data are an essential element in any scientific debate and short-sighted because I failed to realise how efficiently one can expand one’s mind if only one manages to overcome science’s obsessional insistence with data, facts and evidence. Today, after attending about 300 conferences on CAM, I have learned an important lesson and realised the true value and enlightened bliss of data-free discussions, meetings and other debates.
Their advantages are multifold. First, they are far less tedious. Under the old paradigm, one had to prepare, research, read and study for every presentation. Some speakers had to spend days, even weeks or months preparing a single lecture. The new CAM paradigm has made this so much easier. No more time-wasting preparatory work; one can now walk straight into the middle of the action and be part of it. The time thus saved allows one to extend one’s scope of topics almost ad infinitum and to attend even more meetings and data-free discussions for the benefit of everyone.
Second, data can be frightfully intimidating and non-egalitarian. In the past, those with knowledge had a distinct advantage over those without. Under the data-free paradigm, all can join in and all are equal The less you are aware of the facts, the more light-heartedly you can go to work. Data are ever so patronising; they weigh you down and limit your freedom. Data-free debates, in contrast, can be such liberating fun!
Third, data do get in the way of our real aims in life. Data-free meetings are much more practical if you really want to achieve something quickly. All you need to do is to invite speakers who vaguely agree with your own views, let them talk at length and finally reach a groundbreaking, barrier-crashing consensus. If you want to be absolutely sure to succeed, invite a few VIPs to nod their wise heads along the way. Who on earth would dare to disagree with a consensus? Data-free discussion can be immensely productive.
Fourth, under the old paradigm, one set of data often opposed another set. Unavoidably, controversy ensued, people became emotional and in the end someone got hurt. Not so with data-free events! Where there are no data, there can be no disagreement. Here is the energy that will truly heal the medicine for the New Millennium. Data-free discussions provide the true basis for ubiquitous peace, love and happiness.
I, for one, am convinced -the bad old times when scientific meetings focused on data and evidence must be over once and for all. This is particularly true for CAM. The last thing we want is the slaying of our beautiful hypotheses by some nasty, ugly facts.