Skip to main content

CELEBRITY WOO EXAMPLES QUICKLY PLEASE

Help needed. I quickly need some examples of celebrities buying into or endorsing, e.g. miracles cures, new age philosophers, psychics, mediums, ghost stories, homeopathy and other alt. medicines. Any examples and/or links of celebrity woo v gratefully received. Bigger the celebrity and the more recent the better.

Thanks!

Comments

John Griffith said…
How about Steve Jobs. From the NY Times article: "His early decision to put off surgery and rely instead on fruit juices, acupuncture, herbal remedies and other treatments — some of which he found on the Internet — infuriated and distressed his family, friends and physicians, the book says."

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/10/21/technology/book-offers-new-details-of-jobs-cancer-fight.html?_r=2&hp
Antivaxxers like Jim Carrey (via the less well known in the UK Jenny McCarthy)

(I've contacted a few podcasters who specialise in this sort of stuff with the link to here.)
Marsh said…
A few spring to mind:

Nadia Sawalha always endorses homeopathy:
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/health/article-1282474/EastEnders-actress-Nadia-Sawalhas-eczema-drove-desperate-measures--decided-aside-prejudices-try-homeopathy.html

Gwyneth Paltrow is reliably into nonsense like cupping too:
http://www.slate.com/blogs/browbeat/2011/09/08/contagion_vs_goop_did_gwyneth_paltrow_sell_out_alternative_medic.html

Jodie Kidd fronted an extraordinary BBC 3 woo-fest covering all manner of alternative modalities:
http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b00qmvyr

Marsh
David Tredinnick, MP, for astrology and homeopathy.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/David_Tredinnick_(politician)#Support_for_complementary_and_alternative_medicine
Exrelayman said…
Can this be? No one yet mentions Tom Cruise and Scientology?
Of course, @exrelayman, but Scientology is in the general category of religion, which opens up a whole can of worms. I assumed Dr Law wants to steer well clear of that. Think, for example, of all sorts of Catholic miracle woo.
Anonymous said…
There are quite a few celebrity scientologists. See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Scientologists
Anonymous said…
Oprah Winfrey -

http://scienceblogs.com/insolence/2010/11/for_shame_oprah_winfrey_shills_for_faith.php
Anonymous said…
http://thelistcafe.com/pseudo-science-and-crackpot-quacks-10-celebrity-science-shockers
Suzanne Somers:

http://drerika.typepad.com/notepad/2006/10/letter_to_suzan.html

http://www.sciencebasedmedicine.org/index.php/suzanne-somers-knockout-spreading-dangerous-misinformation-about-cancer-part-1/
Scote said…
Does prince Charles count? He has been a tireless campaigner for medical woo.
Adam said…
Turns out David Floopin'Bellamy's a massive homeopathy supporter (and some sort of climate change skeptic):

http://www.quackometer.net/blog/2011/08/a-letter-to-david-bellamy.html
Er, Prince Charles being the biggest supporter of homeopathy everL
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Prince_charles#Alternative_medicine

Unfortunately so is Caroline Lucas, our only Green MP (I like her otherwise): "She is a supporter of homeopathy, having signed an early day motion in support of its continued funding on the National Health Service sponsored by Conservative MP David Tredinnick."
Michael Young said…
It may not be quite what you want, but these are always fun videos anyway (the Tom-Cruise-endorses- scientology video):

Cruise on Scientology.

Also, Tom Cruise comes out against psychiatry:

Cruise on the history of psychiatry.

It is some kind of example of what goes wrong when you buy in to woo.
daz365 said…
Bill Maher

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/bill-maher/vaccination-a-conversatio_b_358578.html
Miles Rind said…
Celebrity Obama "birthers": Donald Trump, Alan Keyes, and now Rick Perry. Maybe not the kind of celebrity—or the kind of woo—that you were looking for, though.
Celebrities who claim to have seen ghosts include Nicholas Cage, Keanu Reeves, Neve Campbell, Matthew McConaughey, Tim Robbins, Hugh Grant, Dan Akyroyd, Sting, Jean Claude Van Damme, Paul McCartney and others:

Source: http://paranormal.about.com/cs/trueghoststories/a/aa022304_3.htm

Not surprising given this 2005 Gallup poll: http://www.gallup.com/poll/17275/onethird-americans-believe-dearly-may-departed.aspx
This guy is not famous but how about a first person account of a demonic possession from an analytic philosopher? http://randalrauser.com/2011/02/awake-in-japan-a-first-person-account-of-demonic-oppression/

He's also interested in ghosts: http://randalrauser.com/2011/07/on-my-preliminary-research-into-ghosts/
Anonymous said…
Dr Oz, the teledoctorwoomerchant extraordinaire.

http://scienceblogs.com/insolence/2011/03/when_faith_healing_isnt_enough_woo_for_d.php
Stephen Law said…
A huge thank you to you all!!!
Martin said…
How about Kate Middleton, Bill Clinton, David Beckham and Leonardo DiCaprio, all spotted sporting the Power Balance bracelet? The Daily Mail did quite a good hatchet job on this hologram based woo in January this year, following legwork by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission.

http://www.powerbalance.com/faqs currently makes the claim that: The thin polyester film hologram is programmed through a proprietary process, which is designed to mimic Eastern philosophies that have been around for hundreds of years. and has a list of 32 professional athletes who are still prepared to endorse it. The most famous one I could recognise is F1 driver Rubens Barrichello.
wombat said…
Too late for the intended use I suspect but I couldn't help noticing this in the FT yesterday.

"Paranormal expert set to become Tory MEP"
(You might need to log in to see this or search via Google) - the guy in question apparently taught "Master’s Degree in Metaphysics, Focus in Paranormal Studies”.


It states "In addition to Mr Matthews’ course, students were obliged to study “psychic protection” and could take courses in “ghost hunting” and “advanced ghost hunting”.

OK the guy is rather obscure outside the fantasy world of EU politics but even so..
Mike said…
This is a bit late, but there's an interesting article from ABC News titled "Crazy Celebrity Health Remedies." Included are Uma Thurman's gem therapy, Nick Nolte's ozone treatment, Suzanne Somers' mistletoe injections, Sarah Ferguson's bio-energy treatments, and more:

http://abcnews.go.com/Health/story?id=6596366&page=1
Alex said…
... this is what happens when you get famous, drop out of school, and you don't have to think too hard to get by, coupled with the artificial "respect" fame gives you that stops people from questioning or simply call you out on your pablum ...

Why, exactly, do we care about what famous people say? Isn't it more important what they *are* saying rather than that they *are* saying something? (It's kind of a shame that Stephen Fry is so famous ... :)
Runescape Gold said…
Indeed! I lastly identified this specific website! I've been surfing due to this article pertaining to such a long time!!

Popular posts from this blog

EVIDENCE, MIRACLES AND THE EXISTENCE OF JESUS

(Published in Faith and Philosophy 2011. Volume 28, Issue 2, April 2011. Stephen Law. Pages 129-151) EVIDENCE, MIRACLES AND THE EXISTENCE OF JESUS Stephen Law Abstract The vast majority of Biblical historians believe there is evidence sufficient to place Jesus’ existence beyond reasonable doubt. Many believe the New Testament documents alone suffice firmly to establish Jesus as an actual, historical figure. I question these views. In particular, I argue (i) that the three most popular criteria by which various non-miraculous New Testament claims made about Jesus are supposedly corroborated are not sufficient, either singly or jointly, to place his existence beyond reasonable doubt, and (ii) that a prima facie plausible principle concerning how evidence should be assessed – a principle I call the contamination principle – entails that, given the large proportion of uncorroborated miracle claims made about Jesus in the New Testament documents, we should, in the absence of indepen

What is Humanism?

What is Humanism? “Humanism” is a word that has had and continues to have a number of meanings. The focus here is on kind of atheistic world-view espoused by those who organize and campaign under that banner in the UK and abroad. We should acknowledge that there remain other uses of term. In one of the loosest senses of the expression, a “Humanist” is someone whose world-view gives special importance to human concerns, values and dignity. If that is what a Humanist is, then of course most of us qualify as Humanists, including many religious theists. But the fact remains that, around the world, those who organize under the label “Humanism” tend to sign up to a narrower, atheistic view. What does Humanism, understood in this narrower way, involve? The boundaries of the concept remain somewhat vague and ambiguous. However, most of those who organize under the banner of Humanism would accept the following minimal seven-point characterization of their world-view.

Plantinga's Evolutionary Argument Against Naturalism refuted

Here's my central criticism of Plantinga's Evolutionary Argument Against Naturalism (EAAN). It's novel and was published in Analysis last year. Here's the gist. Plantinga argues that if naturalism and evolution are true, then semantic epiphenomenalism is very probably true - that's to say, the content of our beliefs does not causally impinge on our behaviour. And if semantic properties such as having such-and-such content or being true cannot causally impinge on behaviour, then they cannot be selected for by unguided evolution. Plantinga's argument requires, crucially, that there be no conceptual links between belief content and behaviour of a sort that it's actually very plausible to suppose exist (note that to suppose there are such conceptual links is not necessarily to suppose that content can be exhaustively captured in terms of behaviour or functional role, etc. in the way logical behaviourists or functionalists suppose). It turns o