Dr. Oz Adds Religious Scams to His List

Already well known for pushing all sorts of medical scams on his viewers, now Dr. Oz has added a religious scam with a show on “how you can use angels to heal.” Seriously, how does this con man still have a license to practice medicine anywhere in the western world?

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  • D. C. Sessions

    He was always pushing magic — it really never mattered what kind. This is just more of the same shit.

  • dingojack

    How would Jesus diet?

    @@ Dingo


    Or perhaps, ‘How many angels can dance on the miniscule benefits gained from the shit this con-artist pushes?’ Would be the more germane question.

  • Sastra

    As I mentioned in the other thread, religious scams are much easier to pull off because the general culture has been trained and encouraged to relax criteria and withhold judgment when it comes to anything touching on religion, spirituality and faith. Believing despite a lack of scientific evidence is suddenly the Gold Standard. It means you’re humble, open, and have the depth to recognize that all truths aren’t measurable scientific truths. Which is technically true — but “medical healing” shouldn’t be placed in the same categories as the beauty of a sunset or human rights.

    I’m not going to watch that show, but I’m going to make a guess that it tries to play to both sides down the middle. That is, it will continually hint at the possibility that there are real angels who really heal real diseases — but it will also dwell on experts in white reassuring people that even if the “angels” are only an imaginary prop and the “healing” is psychological then this is STILL valuable and so this is nothing to sneer at. It’s one possibility in a rich banquet of choices. Everyone agrees we should have individual choice. And now here’s a personal story you won’t want to miss about a health crisis and mysterious helpers who helped and then just seemed to vanish …

    We’re not saying it was angels … but it was angels.

  • John Pieret

    how does this con man still have a license to practice medicine anywhere in the western world?

    Because his Cardiovascular Institute and Complementary Medicine Program at New York-Presbyterian Hospital brings in big bucks?

  • http://en.uncyclopedia.co/wiki/User:Modusoperandi Modusoperandi

    You’re wrong on this one, Ed. It, and things like it, work. I, for one, have personally experienced the satistically minor effects of praying to Saint Placebo.

  • barry21

    @Modus – your comments always crack me up.

  • http://motherwell.livejournal.com/ Raging Bee

    Patriotism may be the last refuge of scoundrels; but too many times religion seems to be the first.

  • dingojack

    Placebo? Placebo?!?

    Fuck that! I want my pleasure, and I want it now!!

    [/Latin nerd]


  • caseloweraz

    Sastra (imagining a scam): And now here’s a personal story you won’t want to miss about a health crisis and mysterious helpers who helped and then just seemed to vanish …

    I thought that was the Lone Ranger. “Who was that masked man? I never got a chance to thank him…”

  • Trebuchet

    Can we just send him back to Turkey? He ought to get along great with Erdogan.

  • http://www.ranum.com Marcus Ranum

    How would Jesus diet?

    He’d turn the water into wine and the bread into pizza and cause fish’n’chips to fall from the sky. Remember – jesus was some kind of caterer-god.

  • http://drx.typepad.com Dr X


    This is comparable to endorsing prescription of a drug hoping for a placebo effect, and telling patients that any benefit might be a placebo effect or it might not be. Some docs do this with medications when they know there is no evidence of effect for a particular condition that can be attributed to the composition of the medication prescribed. IIRC something like half of rheumatologists admit to placebo prescribing.

    A surprising (to me0 number of patients are quite sophisticated about this, particularly when it comes to psychiatric medications. Patients are often dubious about whether improvements they’ve experienced are due to talk therapy, or when meds are involved, med therapy. They’re sure they’re better, but they don’t know if it’s coincidental to the treatment, placebo effect or clearly atributable to the nature of the treatment in itself.

  • Michael Heath

    I skimmed through the comments at the article Ed links to above. Wow, just wow. Most of those comments vividly illustrates the quality of thinking that allows religion, demagogues, and con men to flourish.

  • Sastra

    @Michael Heath:

    Okay, I had to look and must say I was cheered to see there was a vigorous debate going on in those comments — between people who believed angels were messengers sent from God and people who believed that angels were New Age demons sent by the devil. Teach the controversy.

    I’ve been in several situations were someone tells a story about their encounter with an angel. The general atmosphere is always positive — until I start bringing up alternative probabilities. Now I’m bad. But why does nobody seem bothered that taking a real human being’s good deed and turning it into a story about them and their faith is not very nice? Probably for the same reason they don’t seem bothered by grown adults suddenly sounding like 3 year olds. Anything that increases faith is beautiful and sacred and quite likely true.