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Sunday, March 7, 2010

You can help Dr. Barrett

Dr. Stephen Barrett was instrumental in helping to get Paul Whitcomb's chiropractic license revoked (see sidebar for my collection of posts concerning Whitcomb; all ICI Whitcomb posts are here). Dr. Barrett's Quackwatch site is one of my top two to go to when I suspect quackery. If the practitioner isn't mentioned on Quackwatch, I run the site on The Quackometer. But that one is for a different blog post.

Practitioners who are mentioned on Quackwatch sometimes retaliate to the facts written about themselves there by resorting to smear campaigns and even frivolous lawsuits against Dr. Barrett. I'm still getting crazy comments on my posts that mention Dr. Barrett and I haven't even written anything about him since August of last year, so I can only imagine the kind of stuff he gets.

I got this from the Quackwatch Consumer Health Digest weekly e-newsletter:
Issue #09-45, November 4, 2009
Please Help Quackwatch and Dr. Barrett

A personal Message from Robert S. Baratz, MD, PhD, DDS member National Council Against Health Fraud

Dr. Stephen Barrett has been a leader the worldwide struggle against quackery and health fraud for more than 35 years. In addition to publishing the weekly Consumer Health Digest, he has written and/or edited 50 books and manages 24 consumer protection Web sites, including Quackwatch, which has more than 100,000 page views per month and has won many awards for its accuracy and quality. Dr. Barrett also serves as a trusted resource for the media, law-enforcement agencies, educators, and thousands of individual consumers who contact him each year for help.

Quackery promoters have tried to counter his influence by libeling him and filing groundless lawsuits. One campaign has falsely suggested that he had lost his medical license.
http://www.quackwatch.org/11Ind/bolen.html
Another is falsely accusing him of being a habitual criminal.
The legal fees and other costs of defending against this campaign, while partially defrayed by donations, have been much higher than the cost of running the sites.

Very few people have the courage and persistence to engage in the struggle against quackery. Dr. Barrett intends to continue, but can use help in defraying legal expenses. Quackwatch and its companion Web sites are important consumer resources. They are free to the public, but maintaining them requires the ability to deal with frivolous assaults by well-financed quacks and the special interests that profit from quackery. If you appreciate Dr. Barrett's work, please make a contribution. Please give whatever you can.
For amounts under $50, or for contributions of any size from foreign countries, please use the PayPal link on the Quackwatch donations page. http://www.quackwatch.org/00AboutQuackwatch/donations.html It is not necessary to be a PayPal subscriber to do this. It can be done by anyone with a credit card, regardless of where you reside.

If you can give $50 or more and live in the United States, it would be best to mail a donation to:
Barrett Defense Fund
Chatham Crossing, Suite 107/208
11312 US 15-501 North
Chapel Hill, NC 27517

I've added my drop of money to the bucket; I hope you will consider doing so also. Every little bit helps.

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