By Marika Sboros
When I heard that Wikipedia had deleted Scottish GP Dr Malcolm Kendrick’s profile, I was shocked. Not just because I’ve met Kendrick, have read his most well-known, groundbreaking books, written lots about him and have the greatest respect for him.
It’s also not because I take Wikipedia at all seriously. The signs have been there for ages that Wikipedia is not the “free encyclopedia”. It is proving to be more sinister and costly – whether by default or design.
I was shocked because I know how – and why – Wikipedia did something so self-destructive. And how it has damaged its tattered reputation further by deleting someone of Kendrick’s knowledge, experience and standing. (Not surprisingly, Wikipedia ignored my tweeted request for comment.)
Kendrick has written blog on the deletion (republished below). In it, he says his removal from Wikipedia “is nothing” and it “is everything”. That’s “because of what it represents”:
There’s “a war going on out there”, Kendrick says. A war “between scientific enlightenment and the forces of darkness”.
He is not being overly dramatic and he isn’t the only one aware of the war. Many see the excision of Kendrick from Wikipedia as just another salvo in that war.
Wikipedia does itself no favours by abrogating responsibility for the content it publishes or deletes. Instead, it lets armies of unvetted, anonymous, voluntary “guest editors” loose on content and people’s characters and reputations.
These “guests” – I can’t, in all sincerity, call them editors because in my journalistic book, editors should be professional, open and ethical – have deleted Kendrick and other important scientific and medical voices. Their stated reasons for the deletion in Kendrick’s case are bizarre and baseless.
It’s no real surprise, then, that these “guest editors” go for special targets. Nor is it a surprise that they delete, attack or discredit the work of anyone who challenges lucrative orthodox dogma on diet and nutrition. They happily protect dogma that keeps people fat and sick and coming back for more treatment and drugs.
Whether they do so for free or for a fee, who knows, who cares? We should all care.
If you know Kendrick, you’ll know that he’s a stickler for detail and robust scientific evidence. He gives robust evidence from impeccable sources to show that there really is a war going on out there. And that Wikipedia is part of it.
If you know Kendrick, you’ll also know that he doesn’t suffer fools gladly whether they be Twitter trolls or anonymous “guest editors”.
In this case, the anonymous “guest editor” calls himself “Skeptic from Britain”. You’ll notice I say he is male. I do so advisedly as I have a good idea who he is. As does Kendrick, who chooses, for the moment, not to publish Skeptic’s real name.
Skeptic from Britain probably hoped he would be able to remain anonymous. That was always a fond hope because the Internet is an untamed creature. It creates super sleuths overnight. Its World Wide Web easily traps anonymous cowards and reveals them in all their sordid lack of glory. It wasn’t difficult or time-consuming to find Skeptic from Britain or to know that he claims to be a vegetarian. I wouldn’t be surprised if it turns out he isn’t all that truthful about that either. And that he is, in fact, a prosletysing vegan.
He tried hard and failed miserably to justify censoring Kendrick. All he ended up proving is just how ignorant he is – a veritable babe in the scientific woods when it comes to robust research on diet and nutrition.
Kendrick has issued a public challenge to him:
“You want a debate, come out into the open, reveal yourself, your motives and your arguments to the world. Then we can do science. Until then please expect me to hold you in the contempt that you deserve.”
Amen to that, I’d say. It will be interesting to see if Skeptic does have the courage to reveal himself. Given his antics so far, I doubt it.
Once again, Kendrick produces a riveting, evidence-based read below. He goes straight to the heart of darkness of the war against science and lightens it only with the fine intelligence of his humorous “pen”.
By Malcolm Kendrick
As readers of this blog know I was obliterated from Wikipedia recently. Many have expressed support and told me not to get down about it. To be perfectly frank, the only time I knew I was on Wikipedia was when someone told me I was going to be removed. So it hasn’t caused great psychological trauma.
In fact, my feelings about this are probably best expressed on a Roman tombstone. It has been translated in different ways, but my favourite version is the following:
I was not
I am not
I care not
However, whilst my removal from Wiki is, in one way, completely irrelevant in the greater scheme of things, in another way it is hugely important. As Saladin said of Jerusalem, whilst he was battling with the Christians during the crusades: “Jerusalem is nothing; Jerusalem is everything.”
Signs of war
My removal from Wikipedia is nothing. My removal from Wikipedia is everything. Not because it is me but because of what it represents. Not to beat about the bush, there is a war going on out there between scientific enlightenment, and the forces of darkness.
You think that is too dramatic? Well, this is what Richard Horton – editor of the Lancet for many years – has to say: “The case against science is straightforward: much of the scientific literature, perhaps half, may simply be untrue…science has taken a turn towards darkness.”
Science has taken a turn towards darkness. Of course, science cannot really turn anywhere. It is not an entity. Science is simply made up of people.
The scientific method itself, is simply an attempt to discover what is factually true, by being as objective as possible and removing human bias. It is, like everything humans do, imperfect. Bias is always there.
What Horton means is that the methods used to pursue science have increasingly moved from the pure Olympian ideal, a disinterested quest for truth, to something else. Distortion, manipulation and bias. In some cases downright lies. I hesitate to use the term “fake news” but that is what it is. What it is becoming.
As Dr John Ioannadis had to say in his seminal paper, Why most published research findings are false:
“Moreover, for many current scientific fields, claimed research findings may often be simply accurate measures of the prevailing bias. It is more likely for a research claim to be false than true.’”
I think, in truth, this very much depends on the area of science you are looking at. Some are highly contentious, for example, Global Warming. And here you can see dreadful science being done on all sides, as people desperately try to prove their point.
Moving closer to my area, nutritional science is awful. A complete mess. I have virtually given up reading any paper in this area as they just annoy me so much. Ioannidis has looked at the area in some detail. To quote from The American Council on Science and Health:
Ioannidis bluntly states that nutrition epidemiology is in need of “radical reform”. In a paragraph that perfectly captures the absurdity of the field, he writes:
“…eating 12 hazelnuts daily (1 oz) would prolong life by 12 years (ie,1 year per hazelnut), drinking 3 cups of coffee daily would achieve a similar gain of 12 extra years, and eating a single mandarin orange daily (80 g) would add 5 years of life. Conversely, consuming 1 egg daily would reduce life expectancy by 6 years, and eating 2 slices of bacon (30 g) daily would shorten life by a decade, an effect worse than smoking. Could these results possibly be true?”
The answer to his rhetorical question is obviously no. So, how did this garbage get published?
On the other hand how did a major study on replacing saturated fat with polyunsaturated fat (The Minnesota Coronary Experiment) NOT get published?
Because it found that polyunsaturated fat did lower cholesterol levels, but the more it lowered the cholesterol level, the greater the risk of death. That is in the results; this was the conclusion:
Available evidence from randomized controlled trials shows that replacement of saturated fat in the diet with linoleic acid effectively lowers serum cholesterol but does not support the hypothesis that this translates to a lower risk of death from coronary heart disease or all causes.
Findings from the Minnesota Coronary Experiment add to growing evidence that incomplete publication has contributed to overestimation of the benefits of replacing saturated fat with vegetable oils rich in linoleic acid.
The results of this study were, eventually found in the garage of the son of one of the lead investigators. Someone recovered and published it 40 years later. Long after one of the lead investigators, Ancel Keys, had died.
Waking the beast
I wrote the book, Doctoring Data, How To Sort Out Medical Advice From Medical Nonsense, to try and shine some light on the methods used to distort and manipulate data. I try, as best as I can, to follow the scientific method. That includes discussion and debate to test one’s ideas in the furnace of sustained attacks.
However, if you try to do this, the forces of darkness come after you and they come hard. Especially if ever dare to suggest that animal fats, saturated fats, are not in the least harmful. At which point, you waken the vegan beast. And this beast is not the least interested in science or the scientific method or discussion or debate.
It has one aim and that is to silence anyone, anywhere, who dares to question the vegan philosophy. Aided and abetted by the Seventh-Day Adventist Church.
Below is a short list, non-exhaustive list, of those who have suffered their wrath:
Prof Tim Noakes – South Africa
Dr Maryanne Demasi – Australia
Dr Gary Fettke – Australia
Professor John Yudkin – UK
Dr Aseem Malhotra – UK
Dr Uffe Ravnskov – Sweden
Dr Andreas Eenfeldt – Sweden
Dr Zoe Harcombe – UK
Dr Robert Atkins – US
Nina Teicholz – US
Gary Taubes – US
Dr Annika Dahlqvist – Sweden
All of the brave souls on this list have been accused of “killing thousands” at one time or another. Several of these doctors have been dragged in front of the medical authorities, usually by dieticians, who claim that they are damaging patients. So far, they have all won their cases – often after prolonged and expensive legal hearings.
Luckily, the courts recognise logic when they see it.
Uffe Ravnskov has had his book, The Cholesterol Myths, questioning the cholesterol hypothesis burned, live on air. Maryanne Demasi lost her job with the Australian Broadcasting Company.
Now, it seems, the attacks have moved into a different area, such as a determined effort to remove everyone from Wikipedia. When the vegans find someone they don’t like, they work tirelessly to extinguish them from the record.
They call them kooks and quacks but they never ever reveal who they truly are. They exist in the shadows.
They got rid of me from Wikipedia. They are currently attacking Aseem Malhotra, Uffe Ravnskov, Jimmy Moore, and the entire THINCS (The International Network of Cholesterol Skeptics) network.
Worse to come …
There are even worse things going on that I cannot speak about yet.
Yes, this is science today. At least it is one part of science – which is not science, and it has definitely turned to the darkness. You can be accused of being a kook and a quack by someone who hides behind anonymity and never dares to show their face.
In truth, I know who it is. Someone found out for me. Yes, MCE, it is you.
(Editor’s note: don’t confuse MCE with Minnesota Coronary Experiment. SFB’s name is more mundane.)
You want a debate, come out into the open, reveal yourself, your motives and your arguments to the world. Then we can do science.
Until then, please expect me to hold you in the contempt that you deserve.
- This article first appeared on Dr Malcolm Kendrick’s blog
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