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Old 25th November 2012, 05:25 AM   #1
Mojo
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Another challenge from a homeopath?

Is there any info about this challenge?

Quote:
As to James Randi and his 1 million dollar challenge. I have written to the JREF foundation asking for the following simple experiment to be tested:

1. You get hold of 100 sundew plants
2. You give at random 50 plants placebo and 50 plants ammonium carb. 6c
3. The test will show that 50 plants react to homeopathy.

But the test was not admitted by the foundation, which I think is unfair. I want my million bucks!

It relates to some experiments conducted by Charles Darwin, published in his 1875 book Insectivorous Plants (see Chapter 7 on pp.136-173), that a number of homoeopaths have touted as evidence for homoeopathy.

There is no mention of serial dilution or succussion being used in the preparation of the solutions Darwin used. Darwin established something like an orthodox dose-response curve, with the effect becoming smaller and more difficult to observve with decreasing concentration (Note for example the comment on p.171 that “It is to be especially observed that the experiments with the weaker solutions ought to be tried after several days of very warm weather. Those with the weakest solutions should be made on plants which have been kept for a considerable time in a warm greenhouse, or cool hothouse; but this is by no means necessary for trials with solutions of moderate strength”) and a limit beyond which no response was observed. According to another homoeopath's website the weakest solutions used were equivalent in dilution to about a 7X remedy (i.e. 1 part per 10,000,000), so according to Darwin's results a 6C remedy should have no effect even though it would still have some of the original substance present, so would presumably not come within the MDC definition of paranormal.

The same poster (or at least someone posting under the same name) has posted about this experiment elsewhere on the web, for example on the HuffPo and Guardian websites.

Was anything actually received by JREF regarding this?
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Old 25th November 2012, 06:30 AM   #2
Dan O.
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Is that person aware that just writing to JREF does not qualify as an application? There are requirements explicitly listed in the official rules for the MDC and if those requirements are not met the application can be ignored.
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Old 21st December 2012, 04:14 PM   #3
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Yeah, and JREF is certainly not interested in being told "you do x, and you do y"--it's up to the claimant to do the doing and pay the expenses. Also, they'd need to specify what outcome measures constitutes "react to homeopathy". No one expects all measurements of two groups of plants to be exactly equal.
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Old 21st December 2012, 05:45 PM   #4
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The link in the OP goes to an article headed "Is Homeopathy Really As Implausible As It Sounds?" Which explains how implausible it is. The quote cannot be seen.
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Old 22nd December 2012, 03:39 AM   #5
Mojo
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Originally Posted by rjh01 View Post
The link in the OP goes to an article headed "Is Homeopathy Really As Implausible As It Sounds?" Which explains how implausible it is. The quote cannot be seen.

The link should (and when I tried it just now did) go to a comment posted under the article on 09/14/12 at 1:48 am. If it doesn't go to the actual comment when you try it, just search the page for the word "sundew".
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Old 23rd December 2012, 02:58 PM   #6
rjh01
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Originally Posted by Mojo View Post
The link should (and when I tried it just now did) go to a comment posted under the article on 09/14/12 at 1:48 am. If it doesn't go to the actual comment when you try it, just search the page for the word "sundew".
The problem is that I cannot see the comments. I Googled for "you get hold of 100 sundew plants" and it came up with you link, so I know that Google can see what you can see, just that I cannot see it. Which is rather strange as both the article and me are in the same country.

This is no serious challenge. He needs to get publicity and he has none.
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Old 23rd December 2012, 10:22 PM   #7
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Right. This is not a challenge--this is a whine from someone who is (possibly deliberately) misunderstanding the nature of the challenge.

(Of course, considering that this person is silly enough to believe in water memory, it could simply be a failure to comprehend. This sort of thing does not suggest great intelligence.)
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Old 24th December 2012, 01:02 PM   #8
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Homeopathic Intelligence: 1 brain cell shared between 10,000,000 homeopaths.
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