Friday 10 July 2009

A “Bob Dylan” styled Alternative Medicine Protest Song

I was on the train, coming home from work last night listening to Bob Dylan’s “Masters of War” and reading Simon Singh & Edzard Ernst’s “Trick or Treatment”, when the words of the song started to transform.

Hopefully you're familiar with the 1963 masterpiece “Masters of War” taken from “The Freewheelin’ Bob Dylan”, otherwise the following song probably wont work.

Anyway in honour of the multitude of purveyors of alternative medicine woo, I have taken the liberty of rewriting Dylan’s song……..

Come you masters of woo
You that believe in reiki
You that believe in crystals
You that believe in feng shui
Your aromatherapy
Is such an unlikely thing
I just don't want you to know
I have read Simon Singh

You that never healed no one
‘cept placebo effect
Your pills are just sugar
That’s what I suspect
You crack my poor spine
And stick pins in my smile
Then choose to ignore
A controlled clinical trial

Your homeopaths
Who delude and deceive
Distilled water has memory
They want me to believe
There’s no active ingredient
Not one single bit
But if water has memory
Your cures full of shit

You spread misinformation
And don’t vaccinate
With herd immunity lost
Children suffer your fate
You preach from your platform
On Oprah Winfrey
You might as well go
On a mad killing spree

Spine wizards can sue
If they don’t like my song
Your plethora of evidence
Has been proved to be wrong
You’ll regret the exposure
Of this I am sure
For colic and asthma
You don’t have a cure

You won't find my Ch’i
It doesn’t exist
Stop stabbing your pins
Please don’t persist
I have no meridian
To poke with a needle
Please try and see why
Your science is so feeble

Herbal remedies sound natural
What harm could they do?
Untested, unproven
They’re trialling on you
If they turn out to work
Then you’ll have to forgive
They can no longer be classed
As alternative

Crystals and reiki
You’re having a laugh
Not any more likely
Than a flying giraffe
If you believe in that crap
Then you have to admit
You’re lacking in reason
You credulous tit

Kudos must also been given to Dale Williams who’s mastery of the musical parody technique also served as inspiration.


Dale Williams said...

Bravo Crispian. Made my weekend.

Dr. Oliver Clozoff said...

Ha! You might also like (or not!) my skeptic-themed parody of Taylor Swift's "Love Story" which can be found here.

Bob Carroll said...

Maybe we can do a duet. See Tower of Woo at

Bob Carroll

moon j. said...

Really creative, funny and TRUE! Universal health care now!

Crispian Jago said...

Thanks for the comments and the great links to some more woo songs. I'm a big Leornard Cohen fan too, might see if I can find a another Cohen song to rewrite in the name of reason

Anonymous said...

Greetings, felt compelled to reply, to the tune of It's all over now baby blue...

You must leave now your dogmatic view you think will last.

For whatever you wish to preach is old and in the past.

Your Double blind trials must be fun.

As close to truth as we are to the sun.

Look out the world's bigger than your view!

And life don't fit in a lab and that is true.

Doctors with machines forget how to use your sense.

Anything out of your box must be a coincidence.

The empty handed reiki master down your streets.

Has taken all your patient's from your seats.

He knows it's not all in their heads.

But that's alright just feed them some more meds.

The hammers on the sick, that you use to treat.

Work fine if you just treat them as a piece of meat.

The man over there who just walked out your door.

Is dragging round his bladder on the floor.

Pat him on the back go start a new.

And it's alright as long as it's not you.

All your autistic babies, they're the biggest herd.

with their needle jabbed armies no one said a word.

That otis medea you got from your last vaccine.

Just take another dose of peniciline.

Strike another cat it's come back still!

Just take another dose of Amoxil.

Leave your measuring sticks behind you look like such a dope.

Physics me thinks is probably your last hope.

Can't sit around there's people here to fix.

For you sceptics to all work out that it all clicks.

Charles Darwin on his fluffy cloud in the sky so blue!

Cause he's the white bearded man upstairs for all of you.

All in the name of fun debate of course :)

Crispian Jago said...

Anon, you've raised the comment bar. Nice