Magic, herds, corrosion, and more…

James Randi

FSM Friends’ News and Articles

James Randi – Magician and sceptic dies aged 92:  A sad loss. Amazing audiences with his feats of escapology and sleight of hand, Randi had no time for so-called psychics and faith healers, exposing numerous fraudsters with his inside knowledge of a magician’s tricks. He is responsible for inspiring several generations of skeptics and science communicators who are pushing back against the false claims of pseudoscience, the paranormal, and the supernatural, as well as those who profit from them. Randi always put his money where his mouth is and offered a prize through his foundation of $1,000,000 to anyone who could prove a supernatural ability under scientific testing. Not one person has made it through Randi’s first round of tests.

Will natural herd immunity end the pandemic?: “In 1918 the flu pandemic killed at least 50 million people worldwide – that is 50 times the current death toll for COVID-19. I don’t think anyone wants to see that before achieving some level of herd immunity.”


Do not use – Black Salve is dangerous and called by many names: This is not the first time we have mentioned Black Salve on this page – a corrosive paste marketed as a natural cancer treatment, which ‘works’ by corroding tissue. The use of corrosives for skin cancers is akin to surgical removal – with added risk, and without the expertise and oversight of a medical professional. Black Salve can corrode skin, cartilage and muscle, and leave large open sores that heal poorly and carry a high risk of infection. While the majority of our followers are unlikely to fall for the Black Salve marketing, this might be a useful resource to provide friends or family who are considering using Black Salve.

The John Snow Memorandum: In response to the politically manipulative “Great Barrington Declaration” which called for “herd immunity” approach to the COVID-19 pandemic, scientists and healthcare professionals have produced the “John Snow Memorandum” (JSM). The JSM points out the problems with ineffective pandemic management include social inequities, lost trust, demoralisation, as well as the dangers of a “herd immunity” approach. It calls for effective pandemic management strategies, and points out that the time in lock downs must be used effectively to prevent future lock downs. The JSM vets its signatories, unlike that GBD which had signatories from “Signature McPersonFace” and similar. It is interesting to compare the two documents for rigour and bias. 

“Once again, we face rapidly accelerating increase in COVID-19 cases across much of Europe, the USA, and many other countries across the world. It is critical to act decisively and urgently. Effective measures that suppress and control transmission need to be implemented widely, and they must be supported by financial and social programmes that encourage community responses and address the inequities that have been amplified by the pandemic. Continuing restrictions will probably be required in the short term, to reduce transmission and fix ineffective pandemic response systems, in order to prevent future lockdowns.”

Lesser-known Health Professions

What do hospital pharmacists do? Hospital pharmacists perform a critical role in evaluating the safety of patients’ medication regimens as well as providing access to said medications.

Today’s Abused Health Concept  

Claim that masks can’t filter viral particles. Virus tests support masks against COVID-19:  “The Flinders University study, published in Pathogens, found even the poorest performing [cloth] mask filtered at least 50% of viruses. While a 50% reduction might not seem particularly effective, the Flinders environmental health experts say US modelling studies have shown that if 80% of the population was wearing a 50% effective mask in areas of high transmission like New York, the number of COVID-19 deaths could fall between 17% and 45%.”