Monday, September 29, 2008

Postmodernism vs. Evidence-based medicine

Sigh. The fools who brought us the utterly mind-boggling impenetrable stupidity that is "Deconstructing the evidence-based discourse in health sciences: Truth, power, and fascism" (pdf) are back. Their new piece, "On the constitution and status of ‘evidence' in the health sciences" doesn't quite reach the same level of idiocy as their previous effort, but the stupid still makes my head burn. Luckily, two bloggers far more dedicated and knowledgeable than I have responded robustly. Orac of Respectful Insolence argues persuasively that the new paper is "like a black hole of PoMo stupid". And David Gorski, one of the Science-Based Medicine authors, has a characteristically lengthy piece that demolishes both of the above mentioned articles. I'm honestly grateful to Orac and David - someone has to respond to these wackaloons and I certainly don't have the patience.

(HT for the picture to Bad Astronomy. Somewhat relatedly, I speculated earlier this year about the causes of the uselessness of the humanities here).

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