YANSS Podcast 017 – Tim Farley explains the potential harm in using alternative medicine

Dr. Terminus, the snake oil salesman from Disney's "Pete's Dragon"

The Topic: Alternative Medicine

The Guest: Tim Farley

The Episode: DownloadiTunesStitcherRSSSoundcloud

Dr. Terminus, the snake oil salesman from Disney's
Dr. Terminus, the snake oil salesman from Disney’s “Pete’s Dragon”

Where is the line between regular medicine and alternative medicine? Are Eastern medicine and Western medicine truly at odds, and if so, who is right and who is wrong? What harm is there in using complementary or integrative treatments in an effort to improve wellness?

Tim FarleyIn this episode we discuss alternative medicine with Tim Farley, creator and curator of What’s The Harm, a website that tracks the harmful effects that result from seeking out alternative treatments and cures before, or instead of, seeking out science-based medicine. Tim is a software engineer and research fellow at the James Randi Foundation. He also created the website Skeptical Software Tools, and he tweets at @krelnik.

After the interview, I discuss a news story about morality within virtual reality.

In every episode, before I read a bit of self delusion news, I taste a cookie baked from a recipe sent in by a listener/reader. That listener/reader wins a signed copy of my new book, “You Are Now Less Dumb,” and I post the recipe on the YANSS Pinterest page. This episode’s winner is Robin Sanchez who submitted a recipe for raspberry sandwiches. Send your own recipes to david {at} youarenotsosmart.com.

Raspberry Sandwiches

Links and Sources

What’s The Harm?

The Truth About Alternative Medicine (panel from TAM 2012)

Tim Minchin’s “Storm”

An Underground Education

Say Say Say

Pete’s Dragon

The National Science Foundation on Alternative Medicine

The National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine