Without evidence of benefit, an intervention should not be presumed to be beneficial or safe.

- Rogue Medic

Piracy on the High Court

On May 28, 2009 the High Court demonstrated that the Mafia has nothing on the ability of the High Court to commit High Crimes.

Pirate Extraordinaire Sir David Eady (Justice X) decided to enforce an order of Omerta on Simon Singh.

What did Simon Singh do that was so bad, that he has been attacked by pirates? He told the truth. When it comes to truth, Great Britain is the modern equivalent of the Barbary States. There is a great jihad against the truth in Britain. They will send their hired thugs to enforce this gagging. At least the United States has no such law to punish the truth. The truth has been an accepted defense since the John Peter Zenger kangaroo trial in New York. A trial that was won by the defendant through jury nullification.

We have all heard the saying, The truth shall set you free. Well, that does not apply in Britain. The opposite is true. If you tell the truth, and somebody does not like the truth, you may end up broke. Maybe the British interpretation is The truth shall set you free of your possessions so that we can protect the most vile frauds.

Just what did Simon Singh do?

What truth could be so horrible that a court would punish him?

Did he make nasty comments about Kermit being green?

What was so unpardonable a truth?

Simon Singh wrote an article in the Guardian. He wrote about an aspect of alternative medicine unicorn medicine that even many of the unicorn therapists do not defend. He pointed out that the British Chiropractic Association preaches this fraudulent disregard for the health of their patients. Since the motto of the British Chiropractic Association is Abandon all ethics, Ye who enter here, a little word – bogus for example – should not bother anyone. Since their treatment can be lethal, they have to stop all criticism. No matter how minor. No matter how honest. No matter that honesty is in the interest of the public welfare.

Here is the offending paragraph. The penultimate word is the truth that will make a fortune for lawyers and allow the health menace that is the British Chiropractic Association to claim they were wronged. Kind of like, You call that rape. We do far worse to people we claim to help. Not another word, or we’ll rape you the old fashioned way.

You might think that modern chiropractors restrict themselves to treating back problems, but in fact they still possess some quite wacky ideas. The fundamentalists argue that they can cure anything. And even the more moderate chiropractors have ideas above their station. The British Chiropractic Association claims that their members can help treat children with colic, sleeping and feeding problems, frequent ear infections, asthma and prolonged crying, even though there is not a jot of evidence. This organisation is the respectable face of the chiropractic profession and yet it happily promotes bogus treatments.

To me, the word that is out of place is respectable. How can Simon Singh use that word in the same sentence as the name of the shakedown artists, the British Chiropractic Association? See what you get for being polite?

But how do we know that these treatments are bogus?

Here is the paragraph that follows:

I can confidently label these treatments as bogus because I have co-authored a book about alternative medicine with the world’s first professor of complementary medicine, Edzard Ernst. He learned chiropractic techniques himself and used them as a doctor. This is when he began to see the need for some critical evaluation. Among other projects, he examined the evidence from 70 trials exploring the benefits of chiropractic therapy in conditions unrelated to the back. He found no evidence to suggest that chiropractors could treat any such conditions.

Where’s the problem? He used the term bogus, but Simon Singh defined what he meant in the same article. Only an idiot could misunderstand that, or someone being bribed.

Yes. That is true. The only reasons to not label these treatments as bogus would be if one believes in unicorn medicine (maybe not idiocy, but massive gullibility), being bribed, or having one’s family held hostage until the decision is handed down. On the other hand, this is England. England wants to return to the swashbuckling days of piracy. They now encourage libel tourism. For a price of course. If you are going to sell your soul, you might as well be paid well for your perfidy. Maybe Britain will try to replace Nigeria as the home of SPAM.

Dear esteemed Sir. I, Sir David Eady, most humbly beseech you to allow me to bring an important financial matter to your attention . . . .

As a justice, raping the innocent all day, I Sir David Eady, find it difficult to go home and do the same to the wife and kids. That’s why I use Viiagra. When all they will do is lie there and think of England, it keeps me raping until the little buggers are a bloody pulp.

As you can see, there is a great future for Sir David Eady.

“No nation, ancient or modern, ever lost the liberty of speaking freely, writing, or publishing their sentiments, but forthwith lost their liberty in general and became slaves.” John Peter Zenger

Think about that, Not-So-Great Britain.

What can be done about the British anti-honesty laws?


And here are articles on this topic by the big media:

The Independent Silenced, the writer who dared to say chiropractice is bogus

The Times Review of libel law called for by comedians

The Guardian online Science writer Simon Singh to appeal against chiropractic libel judgement

Nature news Science writer will appeal libel case ruling

Times Higher Education Singh plans to appeal ruling in libel case

Wall Street Journal Britain Chills Free Speech

The Daily Telegraph online Stephen Fry and Ricky Gervais defend science writer sued for libel

The Daily Mail online Celebrities back writer sued by chiropractors for saying unproven treatment is ‘bogus’

Respectful Insolence I really admire skeptical English bloggers and commentators…

Respectful Insolence Simon Singh appeals Judge Eady’s bogus libel ruling

Bad Science A characteristically amateurish and socially inappropriate approach to pitching an article

Jack of Kent BCA v Singh: An Astonishingly Illiberal Ruling

The Quackometer Bogus Law

Here is a chart comparing the costs of libel litigation in different European countries from The Quackometer. This should have been done with the bars going sideways, to highlight the way the British libel laws make honest people walk the plank.

Click here to read and sign the statement.