Moshe-Mordechai van Zuiden
Psychology, Medicine, Science, Politics, Oppression, Integrity, Philosophy, Jews -- For those who like their news and truths frank and sharp

How to spot a fake revolutionary medical researcher

The Times of Israel has reported a supposed budding breakthrough in curing cancer, but with a lot of hesitation, and rightly so. The Jerusalem Post, that had the scoop and went rather wild about it, now has recanted.

It’s not always easy for the layperson, to decide who’s right when an trendsetter argues with more traditional knowledgeable people. Whom to believe? Maybe the scientific world is just being stubborn or conservative? Like with Einstein, who never got a Nobel Prize for his Relativity Theory, though he died half a century after publishing it. (Or me, who will never get the Nobel Prize for discovering Free Will.)

History — mistakes gone by — may be helpful — also for scientists in doubt.

Medical experts have been highly impressed in the past with large-scale work by a hyper-critical researcher, but fooled for long times because they missed that he was not critical about his own work at all.

In the beginning years of AIDS, there was a bona fide Scandinavian medical researcher claiming that the Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome was not caused by a virus (that researchers were hurrying to find) but by anti-AIDS medication — or by then-popular recreational drugs in the gay community. Doctors were horrified at the idea that they were not curing but rather causing the deadly ailment. Hundreds if not thousands of pages of the medical literature were wasted on this false scare.

In the Netherlands, there was halfway through the 20th century a guy who seriously claimed that the earth was flat. He wrote a booklet full of proofs. How did he do it, in the age of Sputnik circling Earth?

Well, he disproved all commonly held beliefs why the earth would be round. He was a smart guy. However, his own theory was an uncritically acclaimed set of assumptions. And that’s one way to spot a fake.

The outlying AIDS researcher too proved very good at questioning everyone’s work but not his own shoddy alternative theories.

So that is one thing that jumps out with false medical modernizers. The “innovators” are very critical about every other’s approach but when it comes to their own idea, they’ve no reservation or caution whatsoever.

With these anti-cancer guys, we see clearly a second hint that they are working on an alarming level. They believe too strongly in the success of their method. Hype is nice to maintain strength to continue hard work or if you want to convince others to invest in your project, but it is wholly unscientific. They should rather be the most cautious about their efforts.

One can think up new “scientific theories” faster than a speeding bullet but real science comes when such a super-scientist tries to find out if there is any reality to his flight of thought. Typically, there is not.

Science is not a religion that you must believe in. It is skeptics at work, trying to find proofs. They should do everything to disprove their finds or techniques. When they fail to do that, they might have a cure.

Someone who’s not skeptical about their own work or can’t appreciate doubts of others about it, such a person is not doing science.

So, how to spot a fake scientist? They are not critical enough about their own assumptions and they try to convince you that they must be right, instead of humbly suggesting, with reservations, their latest toil.

About the Author
MM is a prolific and creative writer and thinker, previously a daily blog contributor to the TOI. He often makes his readers laugh, mad, or assume he's nuts—close to perfect blogging. He's proud that his analytical short comments are removed both from left-wing and right-wing news sites. None of his content is generated by the new bore on the block, AI. * As a frontier thinker, he sees things many don't yet. He's half a prophet. Half. Let's not exaggerate. Or not at all because he doesn't claim G^d talks to him. He gives him good ideas—that's all. MM doesn't believe that people observe and think in a vacuum. He, therefore, wanted a broad bio that readers interested can track a bit what (lack of) backgrounds, experiences, and educations contribute to his visions. * This year, he will prioritize getting his unpublished books published rather than just blog posts. Next year, he hopes to focus on activism against human extinction. To find less-recent posts on a subject XXX among his over 2000 archived ones, go to the right-top corner of a Times of Israel page, click on the search icon and search "zuiden, XXX". One can find a second, wilder blog, to which one may subscribe too, here: or by clicking on the globe icon next to his picture on top. * Like most of his readers, he believes in being friendly, respectful, and loyal. However, if you think those are his absolute top priorities, you might end up disappointed. His first loyalty is to the truth. He will try to stay within the limits of democratic and Jewish law, but he won't lie to support opinions or people when don't deserve that. (Yet, we all make honest mistakes, which is just fine and does not justify losing support.) He admits that he sometimes exaggerates to make a point, which could have him come across as nasty, while in actuality, he's quite a lovely person to interact with. He holds - how Dutch - that a strong opinion doesn't imply intolerance of other views. * Sometimes he's misunderstood because his wide and diverse field of vision seldomly fits any specialist's box. But that's exactly what some love about him. He has written a lot about Psychology (including Sexuality and Abuse), Medicine (including physical immortality), Science (including basic statistics), Politics (Israel, the US, and the Netherlands, Activism - more than leftwing or rightwing, he hopes to highlight reality), Oppression and Liberation (intersectionally, for young people, the elderly, non-Whites, women, workers, Jews, LGBTQIA+, foreigners and anyone else who's dehumanized or exploited), Integrity, Philosophy, Jews (Judaism, Zionism, Holocaust and Jewish Liberation), the Climate Crisis, Ecology and Veganism, Affairs from the news, or the Torah Portion of the Week, or new insights that suddenly befell him. * Chronologically, his most influential teachers are his parents, Nico (natan) van Zuiden and Betty (beisye) Nieweg, Wim Kan, Mozart, Harvey Jackins, Marshal Rosenberg, Reb Shlomo Carlebach, and, lehavdil bein chayim lechayim, Rabbi Dr. Natan Lopes Cardozo, Rav Zev Leff, and Rav Meir Lubin. This short list doesn't mean to disrespect others who taught him a lot or a little. One of his rabbis calls him Mr. Innovation [Ish haChidushim]. Yet, his originalities seem to root deeply in traditional Judaism, though they may grow in unexpected directions. In fact, he claims he's modernizing nothing. Rather, mainly basing himself on the basic Hebrew Torah text, he tries to rediscover classical Jewish thought almost lost in thousands of years of stifling Gentile domination and Jewish assimilation. (He pleads for a close reading of the Torah instead of going by rough assumptions of what it would probably mean and before fleeing to Commentaries.) This, in all aspects of life, but prominently in the areas of Free Will, Activism, Homosexuality for men, and Redemption. * He hopes that his words will inspire and inform, and disturb the comfortable and comfort the disturbed. He aims to bring a fresh perspective rather than harp on the obvious and familiar. When he can, he loves to write encyclopedic overviews. He doesn't expect his readers to agree. Rather, original minds should be disputed. In short, his main political positions are among others: anti-Trumpism, for Zionism, Intersectionality, non-violence, anti those who abuse democratic liberties, anti the fake ME peace process, for original-Orthodoxy, pro-Science, pro-Free Will, anti-blaming-the-victim, and for down-to-earth, classical optimism, and happiness. Read his blog on how he attempts to bridge any tensions between those ideas or fields. * He is a fetal survivor of the pharmaceutical industry (, born in 1953 to his parents who were Dutch-Jewish Holocaust survivors who met in the largest concentration camp in the Netherlands, Westerbork. He grew up a humble listener. It took him decades to become a speaker too, and decades more to admit to being a genius. But his humility was his to keep. And so was his honesty. Bullies and con artists almost instantaneously envy and hate him. He hopes to bring new things and not just preach to the choir. * He holds a BA in medicine (University of Amsterdam) – is half a doctor. He practices Re-evaluation Co-counseling since 1977, is not an official teacher anymore, and became a friendly, powerful therapist. He became a social activist, became religious, made Aliyah, and raised three wonderful kids. Previously, for decades, he was known to the Jerusalem Post readers as a frequent letter writer. For a couple of years, he was active in hasbara to the Dutch-speaking public. He wrote an unpublished tome about Jewish Free Will. He's a strict vegan since 2008. He's an Orthodox Jew but not a rabbi. * His writing has been made possible by an allowance for second-generation Holocaust survivors from the Netherlands. It has been his dream since he was 38 to try to make a difference by teaching through writing. He had three times 9-out-of-10 for Dutch at his high school finals but is spending his days communicating in English and Hebrew - how ironic. G-d must have a fine sense of humor. In case you wonder - yes, he is a bit dyslectic. If you're a native English speaker and wonder why you should read from people whose English is only their second language, consider the advantage of having an original peek outside of your cultural bubble. * To send any personal reaction to him, scroll to the top of the blog post and click Contact Me. * His newest books you may find here:
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