Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Bob Dutko: Defending the Untruth

If you routinely listen to Bob Dutko, you know that he claims that his beliefs are backed up by "science, logical, and intellectual reasoning." This is the phrase he uses when promoting his syndicated show Defending the Truth. However, Bob's recent statements regarding immunizations and autism show that what he really is doing is defending lies.

On Friday, Bob discussed the recent court ruling confirming that there is no link between immunizations and autism. Curiously, Bob admitted that there is no scientific evidence to support his claims that immunizations cause autism. However, he said that he can't ignore the anecdotal evidence!

I nearly fell off my chair at this point. Anecdotal evidence is not evidence! It is the opposite of scientific evidence and a logical fallacy!

Bob went on to quote a "paper" by a psychologist named Bernard Rimland. Dr. Rimland, now deceased, was the parent of an autistic child. The "paper" that Bob quoted made some fantastic claims, such as "thousands of parents report with their home videos" that their children have autism after getting a vaccine.

As I noted in a previous post, there have been many scientific studies performed to show that there is no causal link between receiving immunizations and developing autism. One of those studies looked at the health records of 537,303 Danish children. When comparing the vaccinated children to unvaccinated children, researchers found no correlation between vaccination and the development of an autistic disorder.

Whose word am I to trust on this matter? A dead man, whose own child has autism, who claims to have viewed thousands of videotapes from other distraught parents or the comprehensive study of over the medical records of a half million children?

I'm gonna go with the latter. Why won't Bob rely on actual evidence?


Audio said...

Anecdotal evidence is the last resort of the desperate. If you don't understand the prerequisites for something to be considered "scientific" evidence then it is all too easy to trot out anecdotes to prop up your unsubstantiated beliefs. Bob is a pro at this. I am surprised that he finally admitted to the fact that scientific evidence for a link between autism and vaccines does not exist, since for years he has been stating that it DOES exist but is suppressed by the government and pharmaceutical companies. But then again, that's his MO. Back him into a corner and he'll change his story just enough to allow him to claim that he is still in the right.

Lumberjack said...

It's rare I will stick up for Bob, but I must give him partial credit for the disclosure of his views. Each time I have heard him talk about autism and vaccines he admits there is not scientific proof and he is going on his own opinion.

That said, he's off on another 15 minute lecture to the poorly infomred -- his audience -- and never again mentions lack of scientific evidence.

It's much like the attorney who makes an argumentative statement, the judge tells him to stop and instructs the jury to "disregard the statement of counsel." You can't really "un-ring" a bell and Bob's flawed message still goes out to all.

Shattorak said...

A little off topic but another example of Bob’s deceptive manipulations.

I was just listening to Mr. Delusion yesterday. I know, I know it’s a bad habit to get into but I need the comic relief sometimes. Anyway his topic was how Democrats are the enemy of minorities, specifically those of African descent and how Republicans have been the champions of every civil rights movement, bill, organization, and anti-slavery movement that’s ever come down the pike. A caller was giving him examples of how the caller personally had experienced the Republican version of Civil rights. The caller went on to give examples of historical events that prove Bob’s skewed interpretation wrong. Now I haven’t the slightest idea if what the caller said was true but Bob went on to tell the caller that he (the caller) was wrong about what he personally experienced and that the caller needed to go back and re-read the history because he just knew that the caller was wrong. Never mind that Bob was not familiar with the particular items that the caller was referring too. He just knew they were wrong. Never mind the fact that Bob can regurgitate the most inane garbage day after day with evangelical zeal to his flock of unquestioning listeners. Never mind that should you even question Bob’s facts or point out with pinpoint accuracy and references where he’s wrong, you will be quickly dismissed and disconnected. Fact checking is the callers’ responsibility and if it differs from Big Bob then you’re reading it wrong. Only Bob sits at the pinnacle of knowledge (straight from god’s lips) and is able to instantly glean Truth from lies. What a jackass!