Little has changed, it seems, since Ben Goldacre’s Bad Science was published it in 2008. The Mail and The Express are still diligently working their way through the alphabet when it comes to foods they can label as causing and/or curing cancer. MRSA scandals are manufactured thicker and faster every year, hailing a resurgence of Crimean War-standard care. And nutritionists continue to dine (and grow rich) on a healthy diet of our Britain’s body image insecurities.
Indeed Goldacre is the first to admit to the Bad Scientists that “You win” – there will always be a chunk of the population happy to feast on quack cures and dodgy diagnoses. On his blog he confesses to having lost thousands every year travelling up and down the country battling Bad Science. At the same time, ‘alternative’ practitioneers are raking it in thanks to the redoubtable efforts of your local Avon lady.
The fact is people will always distrust that which they cannot understand. Hence Goldacre is right to keep his aims modest – all he wants to do, through his blog, column and this book is help people understand how evidenced-based medicine works.