On The Burzynski Clinic Issuing Legal Threats Against Bloggers – Support The Streisand Effect

From the 21st Floor blog, a highly-regarded group blog from the UK, with news and information on a number of issues and breaking news relevant to skeptics, and a speakers’ register to help out Skeptics in the Pub gatherings in that country:

*Breaking News – Sign The Petition!*

It’s therefore extremely discouraging to read of the recent experiences of the Quackometer’s Andy Lewis, who has been subjected to several bizarre and pseudo-legal rants, threatening a defamation lawsuit, over his sensitive critique of the Burzynski Clinic in the US.

The Burzynski Clinic is a medical centre based in Texas which seemingly offers hope to the hopeless with their ostensibly revolutionary “antineoplaston” cancer treatment. There is even a movie – “Burzynski: The Movie” – which paints a picture of the lone genius Stanislaw Burzynski, fighting the establishment for recognition of his astonishing breakthroughs. The treatment, however, is expensive. Cripplingly so. The clinic regularly quotes eye-watering prices of between £75,000 and £200,000. But what price can you put on hope?

I’m taking a little time out to blog about this, because there are a number of bloggers who are helping spread the word, in order to raise awareness and support Quackometer. In the comments, the Josephine Jones link is suggested for more information, and there’s more links at Short and Spiky blog too.

Thanks to Doubtful News at  http://doubtfulnews.com for Tweeting about this and helping spread the news.

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About Kylie Sturgess

Kylie Sturgess is a Philosophy teacher, media and psychology student, blogger at Patheos and podcaster at Token Skeptic. She has conducted over a hundred interviews including artists, scientists, politicians and activists, worldwide.
She’s the author of the ‘Curiouser and Curiouser‘ column at the Committee for Skeptical Inquiry website and travels internationally lecturing on feminism, skepticism, and science.

  • http://blog.anarchic-teapot.net anarchic teapot

    I’ve added you to our list of supporters. Could you also link/trackback/whatever to Josephine Jones at http://josephinejones.wordpress.com/2011/11/25/stanislaw-streisand-and-spartacus/ ?
    She’s doing the same. We want it to be really obvious Andy isn’t on his own here.

    • Kylie Sturgess

      Done – thanks!

    • keirliddle

      He never was. ;)

  • http://lippard.blogspot.com/ Jim Lippard

    Looks to me like Stephens is objecting to this sentence:

    “Dr Stanislaw Burzynski has been on trial for cancer fraud.”

    Andy links to the NCAHF News of March/April 1997 for this sentence (http://www.ncahf.org/nl/1997/3-4.html), which says:

    “The trial of Stanislaw Burzynski for cancer fraud ended in a hung jury (6-6) on March 4.”

    A Houston Post story (http://www.houstonpress.com/2009-01-01/news/cancer-doctor-stanislaw-burzynski-sees-himself-as-a-crusading-researcher-not-a-quack/) says that Burzynski faced 75 counts, mostly mail fraud (34 counts) and transporting an unapproved drug across state lines, and:

    “When the trial began in 1997, the jury deadlocked, and Lake declared a mistrial. He then tossed the 34 mail fraud counts, citing lack of evidence. For its part, the FDA dropped 40 counts, leaving — 12 years after the raid and seizure of patient records — only one count of contempt. Burzynski was promptly acquitted.”

  • marycontrarian

    This is an outrageous exploitative abuse of the sick and dying. I’m of the opinion that the scientific medical community has lost favour with the public now that the honeymoon is over; the inadequacies and failings of medicine are proliferated daily on the web, however the medical triumphs which save and improve lives deserves renewed emphasis. It’s therefore unsurprising that greedy mountbank quacks with their ignorant arcana are able to market themselves to various members of the public who are more likely to fall prey to superstition.