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Tags quackwatch , Stephen Barrett

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Old 28th July 2005, 03:52 AM   #1
Darat
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Sarah-I's allegations against Stephen Barratt of Quakwatch fame

Sarah-I posted this (from: http://www.internationalskeptics.com...tid=1871000941)

Quote:
Originally posted by Sarah-I
I hate to tell you that Stephen Barratt is not a respected MD. He is a retired psychiatrist who no longer practices and he has been discredited recently. He was used as an expert witness in a court case not long ago and the case was thrown out, as his evidence was demonstrated to be totally unreliable.

I would not trust him if my life depended on it.
Can you supply any evidence to support your apparently libellous statements regarding Stephen Barratt?
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Old 28th July 2005, 03:56 AM   #2
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Yes, there is the transcript of the court cases where the cases were thrown out. This happened in a case against a chiropractor and there was also a homeopathy case that was thrown out.

They were very high profile cases too.
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Old 28th July 2005, 04:00 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally posted by Sarah-I
Yes, there is the transcript of the court cases where the cases were thrown out. This happened in a case against a chiropractor and there was also a homeopathy case that was thrown out.

They were very high profile cases too.
I did not ask for repeated allegations but evidence. Please provide the evidence.
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Old 28th July 2005, 04:04 AM   #4
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These are not repeated allegations. The transcripts of the court cases are the evidence for this.

I managed to find these, so I am sure that you can too.
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Old 28th July 2005, 04:09 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally posted by Sarah-I
These are not repeated allegations. The transcripts of the court cases are the evidence for this.

I managed to find these, so I am sure that you can too.
There seems to be a problem of comunication. Darat is asking you to provide these transcripts, not to once again assert their existance.
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Old 28th July 2005, 04:11 AM   #6
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I understood that Dr Barrett was suing the perpetrator of these smears for libel?

See:
The history

and:

Case detail
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Old 28th July 2005, 04:11 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally posted by Darat
I did not ask for repeated allegations but evidence. Please provide the evidence.
I highly doubt we'll see any evidence of this from her.

By the way Sarah, a psychiatrist is in fact an MD.

Any proof that anything Dr. Barrett has on quackwatch is false, or that he is not a respected medical doctor?


No? Didn't think so.


If you're referring to the Bolen affair, you're on shaky ground.

See the links posted above.
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Old 28th July 2005, 04:17 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally posted by Sarah-I
These are not repeated allegations. The transcripts of the court cases are the evidence for this.

I managed to find these, so I am sure that you can too.
I do not know which transcripts you are referring to, please provide links to the evidence you have.

You have made several in my opinion at least scurrilous allegations against Stephen Barratt these are:

1) ...Stephen Barratt is not a respected MD. - please provide the evidence
2) ...he has been discredited recently. - please provide the evidence
3) ... He was used as an expert witness in a court case not long ago and the case was thrown out, as his evidence was demonstrated to be totally unreliable. - please provide the evidence.
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Old 28th July 2005, 05:32 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally posted by Sarah-I

These are not repeated allegations. The transcripts of the court cases are the evidence for this.

I managed to find these, so I am sure that you can too.
I'm having a little trouble finding the transcripts from the information you've provided. Any chance that you can provide some more details, such as the names of the parties to the cases or the courts they were heard in?

If you found them once, surely you can find them again?

Always assuming that you actually did find them, of course.
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Old 28th July 2005, 06:37 AM   #10
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Sarah, if nobody here can find the evidence you're alluding to, will you produce it? Or will you admit you unthinkingly repeated a libellous statement?

Rolfe.
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Old 28th July 2005, 07:42 AM   #11
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Since Sarah appears to be incapable, I've had a look around. Perhaps this is what she is alluding to.

Quote:
As for his credential as an expert on FDA regulation of homeopathic drugs, the Court finds that Dr. Barrett lacks sufficient qualifications in this area. Expertise in FDA regulation suggests a knowledge of how the agency enforces federal statutes and the agency’s own regulations. Dr. Barrett’s purported legal and regulatory knowledge is not apparent. He is not a lawyer, although he claims he attended several semesters of correspondence law school. While Dr. Barrett appears to have had several past conversations with FDA representatives, these appear to have been sporadic, mainly at his own instigation, and principally for the purpose of gathering information for his various articles and Internet web-sites. He has never testified before any governmental panel or agency on issues relating to FDA regulation of drugs. Presumably his professional continuing education experiences are outdated given that he has not had a current medical licence in over seven years. For these reasons, there is no sound basis on which to consider Dr. Barrett qualified as an expert on the issues he was offered to address. Moreover, there was no real focus to his testimony with respect to any of the issues in this case associated with Defendants’ products.



C. Credibility of Plaintiff’s experts

Furthermore, the Court finds that both Dr. Sampson and Dr. Barrett are biased heavily in favor of the Plaintiff and thus the weight to be accorded their testimony is slight in any event. Both are long-time board members of the Plaintiff; Dr. Barrett has served as its Chairman. Both participated in an application to the U.S. FDA during the early 1990s designed to restrict the sale of most homeopathic drugs. Dr. Sampson’s university course presents what is effectively a one-sided, critical view of alternative medicine. Dr. Barrett’s heavy activities in lecturing and writing about alternative medicine similarly are focused on the eradication of the practices about which he opines. Both witnesses’ fees, as Dr. Barrett testified, are paid from a fund established by Plaintiff NCAHF from the proceeds of suits such as the case at bar. Based on this fact alone, the Court may infer that Dr. Barrett and Sampson are more likely to receive fees for testifying on behalf of NCAHF in future cases if the Plaintiff prevails in the instant action and thereby wins funds to enrich the litigation fund described by Dr. Barrett. It is apparent, therefore, that both men have a direct, personal financial interest in the outcome of this litigation. Based on all of these factors, Dr. Sampson and Dr. Barrett can be described as zealous advocates of the Plaintiff’s position, and therefore not neutral or dispassionate witnesses or experts. In light of these affiliations and their orientation, it can fairly be said that Drs. Barrett and Sampson are themselves the client, and therefore their testimony should be accorded little, if any, credibility on that basis as well.
I'd suspect that the fact that they are not independent witnesses had more to to with the court's attitude.

By the way, I am assuming that the transcript is genuine, which seems likely, but it may not be, given the source.

edited to add: By the way, this court case was all about whether an advertiser needs to prove their claims or not. It says nothing about the efficacy of homeopathy, before anyone gets excited.
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Old 28th July 2005, 07:47 AM   #12
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Ah. They hold strong opinions, known as facts, therefore they can't be trusted.

I think I'll be buying bottled water for a while. I don't think our water supply is safe.
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Old 28th July 2005, 08:03 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally posted by BronzeDog
Ah. They hold strong opinions, known as facts, therefore they can't be trusted.
Pffft, facts are meaningless. You could use facts to prove anything that's even remotely true.
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Old 28th July 2005, 08:35 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally posted by richardm
Since Sarah appears to be incapable, I've had a look around. Perhaps this is what she is alluding to.



I'd suspect that the fact that they are not independent witnesses had more to to with the court's attitude.

By the way, I am assuming that the transcript is genuine, which seems likely, but it may not be, given the source.

edited to add: By the way, this court case was all about whether an advertiser needs to prove their claims or not. It says nothing about the efficacy of homeopathy, before anyone gets excited.
Thanks for that Richard, but I doubt that is what Sarah-I was referring to since it doesn’t substantiate the allegations she made:

I.e.

1) ...Stephen Barratt is not a respected MD.
2) ...he has been discredited recently.
3) ... He was used as an expert witness in a court case not long ago and the case was thrown out, as his evidence was demonstrated to be totally unreliable.
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Old 28th July 2005, 08:42 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally posted by Darat
I doubt that is what Sarah-I was referring to since it doesn’t substantiate the allegations she made
Non-sequitur.
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Old 28th July 2005, 08:47 AM   #16
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Quote:
Pffft, facts are meaningless. You could use facts to prove anything that's even remotely true.
Speaking of lawsuits - you had better edit this post to give proper credit or you could be sued by Homer Simpson.

What a nerd I am.
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Old 28th July 2005, 08:51 AM   #17
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Quote:
Originally posted by Mojo
Non-sequitur.
In this case you're probably right!
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Old 28th July 2005, 09:04 AM   #18
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How sad it is to see the depths that proponents of 'alternative' therapies will sink.

Their own therapies can't stand up by themselves in the face of scientific testing, so they have to resort to libellously attacking those who criticise their beloved therapies.

And they can't even do any better than "These things just happened I read it someowhere and it was really famous and you'll have to find the evidence for yourslf".

Sarah what would you say if someone wrote:

"Sarah-I is a phony. She experiments on patients without their knowledge, has been discredited and disgraced as a craniosacral therapist and is widely considered a joke in all circles. She is a known liar with no respect for patients and only practices her 'therapies' to trick money out of gullible people and to play at being a real doctor, because she lacks the intelligence and work ethic required to become a real doctor.
She is even so unprincipled, unethical and amoral that she attempts to libel real doctors who dare to tell people the truth about medicine in order to help people avoid frauds and false information.
She is self-serving, arrogant and irresponsible and nobody should trust her with any aspect of their health, no matter how minor, as she doesn't have the first clue about treating any medical complaint whatsoever. The evidence for this is all well known. I have found it you can too."


How might you respond to such a hypothetical comment?
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Old 28th July 2005, 09:10 AM   #19
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Quote:
How might you respond to such a hypothetical comment?
possibly something like:"Yeah...sputter, sputter...so's yer mother..."

These are people without pride or ethics. They are the ethical equivelent of hit and run drivers..
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Old 28th July 2005, 09:55 AM   #20
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I'm just getting fed up with this type of thing at the moment.

People wonder why so many people are confused about what is true, what there is scientific evidence for, what sources to trust to get information...

We have the likes of antigray on this thread spouting nonsense about reptoids and ancient technology. He has actually written a book about it which people will read and, if they don't check, possibly believe. He is linking to a buffoon called Jonathan Gray who is also writing idiotic books about ancient technology, nuclear wars before recorded history, flood myths etc.
These people are just confusing people and spreding lies that harm people's understanding of the world (and making money out of it too).

Then you have people like Sarah-I.
Quackwatch has reams of evidence, input from many doctors and specialists, and, above all, attempts to tell people the truth about medical matters, a subject many are, obviously, very confused about.

Sarah loves her little therapies, but because they don't hold up to any sort of scientific testing she feels the need to attack sites that tell people the truth. But as she can't actually argue with the evidence or the science of the site she must instead attack the people involved.
By lies if necessary.

And we know what damage lies can do.

Quackwatch is a, literally, potentially life-saving resorce - an excellent website with full references.
And it is set up solely to attempt to tell people the truth about fraudulent medical claims - an aim you would have thought that would be supported by anyone with a shred of human decency.

But people like Sarah are so threatened by this site that they lash out spitefully at the messengers.

This is worse than ignorance - it is a deliberate attempt to conceal the truth for personal gain.

It has been said that Sarah loves to play at doctor. Perhaps that is why she feels the need to behave so despicably towards real doctors.

I absolutely do not understand how people like Sarah have the gall to show their face in public, let alone actually talk to people about their health problems.

I do not understand why some people appear to be born without a sense of shame, a sense of what is right and wrong, a sense of respect for truth, a sense of unearned self-importance.

Perhaps Sarah's comments are actionable by Doctor Stephen Barrett. That would be interesting. It would be nice to see Sarah forced to back up her comments or retract them as unfounded lies.
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Old 28th July 2005, 10:35 AM   #21
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Was that part of the "King Bio" case? I think it was.

I've had homoeopaths throw that one in my face as proof that homoeopathy isn't fakery, but when I looked at the details provided by them, it was clear that it was merely a technical victory for King Bio. In effect, the NCAHF went after King Bio based solely on King Bio's own claims that their homoeopathic products are 100% pure water. This is apparently an attempt to corner the "strong drink is evil" segment of the market, by producing homoeopathic remedies using simply water as a solvent rather than the usual water/alcohol (generally vodka) mixture.

So, here you have a company charging quite steep prices and making therapeutic claims for something which is admittedly nothing but ordinary water. NCAHF thought that this was enough to support a case that since it was self-evident that water didn't have the properties claimed, King Bio was a fraud.

However, they reckoned without the judge they encountered, who refused to accept the general statement that water doesn't have the properties claimed, and threw the case out on the grounds that the plaintiffs had done no specific tests on the actual water being sold by King Bio.

He also took the unusual step of declaring that on the one hand Dr. Barrett was not well-versed in FDA regulation, therefore he could not present himself as an expert on that matter, but on the other hand Dr. Barrett knew a great deal about homoeopathy, which made him biassed, and therefore not a suitable expert witness. It's clear to anyone looking at the situation that the judge was a homoeopathy sympathiser/user, and blinded himself to the arguments because he didn't want to give up his own cherished magic sugar pill habit.

If knowing enough about a fraud to be able to give evidence that the practice is indeed fraudulent is sufficient to dismiss an expert as "biassed", then all fraudsters may sleep easily in their beds.

If this counts as Dr. Barrett being "discredited", then I'm the proverbial banana.

I also note the remark "he is a retired psychiatrist who no longer practises". Right, Sarah, the fact that he is retired means that he no longer practises. He's at least 70 years old. Were you implying something different?

Look at the link Oleron posted. This guy is a highly respected doctor who in the latter part of his career and into his retirement has had a particular interest in investigating and exposing a number of high-profile health frauds. Including homoeopathy. Naturally the people whose lucrative businesses might be damaged if the truth about the fraudulent nature of their practices was more widely known are trying to discredit him.

Sarah, of course, is one of these, and we really shouldn't be surprised that she's joined the Bolen chorus.

Rolfe.
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Old 28th July 2005, 02:05 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally posted by Sarah-I
Yes, there is the transcript of the court cases where the cases were thrown out. This happened in a case against a chiropractor and there was also a homeopathy case that was thrown out.

They were very high profile cases too.
Have you read and understood those transcripts? Do you understand that the judge's views were perverse?

The judge considers that the defendants' 'expert' had greater credibility because she was a trained homeopath. Seems we've heard a similar excuse from our pakistani friends: you must be qualified before you have the right to comment. The fact that no sane or rational person would qualify themselves as a homeopath seems not to matter, whereas it is prima facie evidence that they are a nutter whose opinions should be disregarded.

Now, where was that case heard? Oh, yes. California Truly, the law can be an ass.


The really sickening part is contained in this paragraph;

"With respect to the products at issue in this case, Dr. Wilson is the only expert who investigated and evaluated any of the Defendants’ products and their ingredients. Based on her review and general knowledge of the field, she offered her opinion that all of the ingredients in Defendants’ products are listed in the Homeopathic Pharmacopeia of the United States, which is the federally approved reference guide for all officially recognized homeopathic drugs. She also testified that all of Defendants’ labeling was consistent with the information respecting drug indications found in the Materia Medica. Based thereon, Dr. Wilson concluded, the Defendants’ products complied with all applicable FDA laws and regulations."

where the sweetheart arrangement by which homeopathic remedies were given a free ride by the FDA is used by their defenders to escape their responsibilities.

And nitwits like you Sarah think they are heroes.
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Old 28th July 2005, 02:14 PM   #23
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Quote:
Originally posted by Rolfe
Sarah, if nobody here can find the evidence you're alluding to, will you produce it? Or will you admit you unthinkingly repeated a libellous statement?

Rolfe.
Asking for evidence from this person I suspect is a fruitless endeavour.

I just read the link in your sig with the wonderful job of diagnosis Sarah did. Why anyone should take medical advice from her is beyond me.

...especially if they have Addison's disease.
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Old 28th July 2005, 02:22 PM   #24
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Originally posted by fowlsound
Asking for evidence from this person I suspect is a fruitless endeavour.
Of course. But we have to give her every chance we can for her to run away like a coward so that the fence-sitting portion of the lurkers can watch.

ETA: Oh, and it's fun, too.
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Old 28th July 2005, 02:47 PM   #25
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Quote:
Originally posted by BronzeDog


ETA: Oh, and it's fun, too.

As I am learning...
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Old 28th July 2005, 03:19 PM   #26
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Quote:
Originally posted by Ashles

Sarah what would you say if someone wrote:

"Sarah-I is a phony. She experiments on patients without their knowledge, has been discredited and disgraced as a craniosacral therapist and is widely considered a joke in all circles. She is a known liar with no respect for patients and only practices her 'therapies' to trick money out of gullible people and to play at being a real doctor, because she lacks the intelligence and work ethic required to become a real doctor.
She is even so unprincipled, unethical and amoral that she attempts to libel real doctors who dare to tell people the truth about medicine in order to help people avoid frauds and false information.
She is self-serving, arrogant and irresponsible and nobody should trust her with any aspect of their health, no matter how minor, as she doesn't have the first clue about treating any medical complaint whatsoever. The evidence for this is all well known. I have found it you can too."


How might you respond to such a hypothetical comment?
Sarah would say, "I'm unable to respond to crticism at this time due to my pounding headache."
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Old 28th July 2005, 03:51 PM   #27
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Originally posted by Perpetual Notion
Sarah would say, "I'm unable to respond to crticism at this time due to my pounding headache."
Not necessarily. She may claim that she mentioned something about it to one of her patients once and that this makes it confidential (NB: scroll up that thread a little way if you don't know what she was trying to claim confidentiality for).
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Old 28th July 2005, 04:26 PM   #28
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Quote:
Originally posted by Rolfe
This is apparently an attempt to corner the "strong drink is evil" segment of the market, by producing homoeopathic remedies using simply water as a solvent rather than the usual water/alcohol (generally vodka) mixture.
Hey! Can you do homeopathy with alcohol? If I sell 30C bat guano/mercury in alcohol in large bottles in a country with high alcohol taxes...

I'm rich! I'm independent!
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Old 28th July 2005, 04:38 PM   #29
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Quote:
Originally posted by Mojo
Not necessarily. She may claim that she mentioned something about it to one of her patients once and that this makes it confidential (NB: scroll up that thread a little way if you don't know what she was trying to claim confidentiality for).
Are we sure she actually has clients or is she an imaginary homeopath?
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Old 28th July 2005, 04:47 PM   #30
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Originally posted by Perpetual Notion
Are we sure she actually has clients or is she an imaginary homeopath?
In my mind they are all imaginary homeopaths, with no interaction with sick people. The reality of the imbeciles we debate actually using their BS on someone in need is sickening.
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Old 28th July 2005, 04:54 PM   #31
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Originally posted by Perpetual Notion
Are we sure she actually has clients or is she an imaginary homeopath?

For the client's sake I hope it's all imaginary with her.
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Old 28th July 2005, 05:05 PM   #32
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Sarah-I's post: 07-28-2005 06:04 AM (CST)

Current time: 07-28-2005 07:04 PM (CST)

It has been 13 hours since Sarah-I's last post. No links provided.
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Old 28th July 2005, 05:28 PM   #33
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Quote:
Originally posted by BronzeDog
Sarah-I's post: 07-28-2005 06:04 AM (CST)

Current time: 07-28-2005 07:04 PM (CST)

It has been 13 hours since Sarah-I's last post. No links provided.
"I know I read that somewhere, now where can it have been... I have it here somewhere..." Stuff like that can take days in a sufficiently cluttered office. Trust me.
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Old 28th July 2005, 05:36 PM   #34
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Quote:
Originally posted by BronzeDog
Sarah-I's post: 07-28-2005 06:04 AM (CST)

Current time: 07-28-2005 07:04 PM (CST)

It has been 13 hours since Sarah-I's last post. No links provided.
To be fiar she normaly posts over a fairy narrow time range that makes sense from what is at the moment BST.
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Old 28th July 2005, 05:41 PM   #35
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Originally posted by geni
To be fiar she normaly posts over a fairy narrow time range that makes sense from what is at the moment BST.
You're probably right.

But I think it's good to keep track. It'll let her know someone's monitoring her progress.
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Old 29th July 2005, 09:21 AM   #36
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Originally posted by BronzeDog
You're probably right.

But I think it's good to keep track. It'll let her know someone's monitoring her progress.

Well over 24 hours now.

Where is Sarah and the links to her evidence?

My prediction: They are all hanging out with bigfoot and having a beer.

I am fed up with trolls making unsubstantiated libelous statements and runnig away.
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Old 29th July 2005, 11:02 AM   #37
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I was about to post something to the effect of, to be fair, people aren't going to come here and post everyday.

But, then I realized, if you decide to open a thread with an libellous statement, then you should probably stick around to defend it.
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Old 29th July 2005, 11:17 AM   #38
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Originally posted by Jas
But, then I realized, if you decide to open a thread with an libellous statement, then you should probably stick around to defend it.
Well, note that she didn't actually do that. The libellous statement was a cheap passing shot in the acupuncture and chiropractic thread, after a poster had recommended Dr. Barrett's web sites as good resources on these subjects. Sarah's normal posting style is "argument by blatant assertion", and she practically never backs up anything she says with anything that could be described as evidence.

On this occasion Darat chose to pick up her statement and highlight it by starting a new thread with it. This allowed the original thread to remain on-track, but it also seems to have put the spotlight a bit too brightly on a remark Sarah probably didn't intend to have so much prominence.

Rolfe.
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Old 29th July 2005, 11:44 AM   #39
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Quote:
Originally posted by Rolfe
...snip...

On this occasion Darat chose to pick up her statement and highlight it by starting a new thread with it. This allowed the original thread to remain on-track, but it also seems to have put the spotlight a bit too brightly on a remark Sarah probably didn't intend to have so much prominence.

Rolfe.
It's not something I do very often but I considered it a scurrilous list of allegations about the creator of the site that has a very good reputation for providing accurate and much needed medical information.

Unfortunately since she cannot or will not support her allegations then I have to conclude that they were totally and utterly without foundation. It is a shame for her that she does not have the integrity or strength of character to withdraw her scurrilous allegations.
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Old 29th July 2005, 11:46 AM   #40
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Quote:
Originally posted by Rolfe
*snip* This allowed the original thread to remain on-track, but it also seems to have put the spotlight a bit too brightly on a remark Sarah probably didn't intend to have so much prominence.

Rolfe.
Tough... luck for her.
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