Precisely because it is so hard to regulate and prevent the spread of these pseudo-scientific non-treatments, we should be cracking down on one of their lucrative revenue streams by ending the tax-free status of workplace benefits plans that cover them. People should, at the very least, have to pay tax on pseudo-scientific treatments covered by their benefits plans.Basic problem: The usual definition of "pseudoscientific" is totally independent of actual science. It's purely a matter of fashion and status and grants. Electrotherapy (magnetic fields or passing current through the body) was normal and mainstream from 1840 to 1920, then pseudoscientific quackery from 1920 through 1980, now normal and mainstream again. Psychiatry has been totally and definitively disproved from the start, but it continues to be "scientific" because the Tribe owns it. Diet advice switches back and forth at a dizzying pace. A doctor who tells you to avoid fat is "scientific" today, "pseudo" tomorrow, "scientific" the next day. What happens if you tax a bad treatment for a while, then "learn" that the same treatment is now good and necessary? Do you refund the taxes from the bad time? Conversely, do you retroactively tax a treatment that has switched from necessity to quackery?
Labels: Loughnerian Logic
Polistra was named after the original townsite of Manhattan (the one in Kansas). When I was growing up in Manhattan, I spent a lot of time exploring by foot, bike, and car. I discovered the ruins of an old mill along Wildcat Creek, and decided (inaccurately) that it was the remains of the original site of Polistra. Accurate or not, I've always liked the name, with its echoes of Poland (an under-appreciated friend of freedom) and stars. ==== The title icon is explained here. ==== Switchover: This 2007 entry marks a sharp change in worldview from neocon to pure populist. ===== The long illustrated story of Polistra's Dream is a time-travel fable, attempting to answer the dangerous revision of New Deal history propagated by Amity Shlaes. The Dream has 8 episodes, linked in a chain from the first. This entry explains the Shlaes connection.