Re: virus: from the Skeptic's newsletter...

Wade T.Smith (
Sat, 6 Feb 1999 10:58:12 -0500

>The placebo
>effect is real and beneficial-- that's been scientifically
>proven, and is not a subject for skepticism.

_Of course_ it remains a subject for skepticism, and further study of all types. What tripe....

>And yet it's not
>available to complete practicing skeptics as a therapy, either on
>one side of the doctor's desk or the other. Another conundrum.

The magic of the placebo effect is that the reciever _has no idea it is not a medicine_, and unless one's skepticism is genetic, no-one is that immune. Yes, no skeptic will accept a medicine from a witch-doctor, for instance, but, also, part of the conundrum is, who _is_ the witch-doctor in a specific culture?

Memetics should never be part of a placebo effect.

"Being an atheist is a matter not of moral choice,
     but of human obligation." - John Fowles
      Wade T. Smith ---