Friday, March 28, 2014

Does He Protest to Much?

. . In an earlier post we warned about so-called peer review and open-access journals.  A friend forwarded a copy of the publication 157 Peer Reviews Fail to Catch Fake Cancer Study by Joseph Mercola. (click here for a link to the article).  Most of the warnings and description about open-access journals are accurate.  One needs to be very careful when relying on any claimed peer reviewed article whenever that article is posted primarily in journals for which the author must pay to be published.  However, Mercola creates other credibility issues for which readers must be cautious.
. . Before posting, we decided to do a little research about the author and found this article, FDA Orders Dr. Joseph Mercola to Stop Illegal Claims by Stephen Barrett, M.D.(click here for link)Steven Barrett is the author of the highly respected and acclaimed website Quackwatch.  Our issue is that even if a source is mostly accurate, such as Dr Mercola's article, that obviously does not automatically anoint a badge of credibility on everything.  Having said all of this, here is what we have we found in Dr Mercola's article in our experience.
In recent decades, scientific research has been undercut by decreased public funding and increased corporate funding of educational institutions. Not only does private industry write fat checks to universities in the form of research grants, but they make it even more lucrative for the schools when the research culminates in patentable products.
It’s become quite clear that instead of evidence-based decision making, we now have decision-based evidence making... Scientific evidence appears to be largely concocted to support an already established corporate agenda.
Be highly skeptical of ANY published study, particularly if it comes from an obscure journal... Always consider the source of the information... Who funded the study and where was it published? Do not accept the findings of any single paper, as scientific results are only reliable after replication and the building of consensus through time. Always look for corroboration. 

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