Always ask: What did the police do to escalate the situation?

Whenever we hear of a police encounter, whether it be between two individuals or a crowd versus an entire department or a swat team raiding the wrong house or a cop shooting a dog (as they have a fetish to do), the first question we should ask ourselves is: What did the police do to escalate the situation? This isn’t the case with all police. Those of, say, Canada or France or Norway needn’t have this question follow them. But the police of places like Russia and Iran and the U.S. and China have earned it. It’s a question for police states.

Note that in addition to bringing in military toys, the police response here also included a violation of the guy’s Fourth Amendment rights.

Some times the quackery makes me laugh

There’s a lot that distresses me about naturopaths and other quacks. They are a genuine danger to the health of all those who encounter them. This may be in the form of an active danger – cases abound of them prescribing contra-indicated drugs – or it may be in the form of a more passive danger, such as when someone with an easily treatable but potentially deadly disease is misdiagnosed by one of these poorly trained charlatans – but they are a danger any way one wishes to look at it. That said, that doesn’t mean the ineffective methods of these quacks can’t be hilarious. Take this interview with Portland quack Sarah Kotzur:

To determine the best course of treatment, including an appropriate homeopathic remedy, Dr. Kotzur spends two hours with a new patient. “I’m trying to know you as a whole person,” she says. “I’m going to ask about what kind of dreams you have, what kind of food you crave. What is your body temperature? Do you sweat? Are you thirsty?”

Emphasis mine, hilarity Kotzur’s. One wonders how she decides to interpret this arbitrary information when ‘treating’ one of her ‘patients’. If the person has dreams where they can’t run fast, does that mean she prescribes a dose of treadmill time? Tough to tell, but I’d venture a guess that most of her ‘treatments’ come down to garlic, some sort of berry, and/or what is basically water.

The rest of the article goes into attempting to legitimize the practice by noting how it works with insurance and licensing:

Naturopathy has come a long way since the 1980s. There are currently six accredited schools of naturopathic medicine in the United States and 16 states now offer practice licenses. Maine has been licensing naturopathic doctors since 1996.

What the article failed to mention, and what naturopaths don’t want people to know, is that naturopathy is specifically banned in South Carolina and Tennessee. It isn’t medicine, it isn’t related to science, and every single one of its practitioners is a quack.

Thought of the day

Bond issues: Things invariably approved at the ballot box by voters who would disapprove of their representative voting for the exact same things on the floor of the state house.