It’s almost that time of year again. In three weeks wingnuts from across the world will converge on California for the chiropractic event, California Jam – a name stolen from a 1970s rock festival. CalJam is the creation of anti-vaccine, chiropractic conspiracy theorist Billy DeMoss, the Casper Jonquil of global health care. It may assist the reader to use Casper’s voice when reading all future DeMoss posts:
I have seen several boasts of attendance figures of “a few thousand” for this thing (I can’t find them now). I find this event to be equal parts terrifying and amusing. Serious chiropractors across the world should be terrified if these people are gathering in such numbers to drag their profession through the sewer.
A couple of weeks ago chiropractor Jennifer Barham-Floreani wrote a Facebook post, on her professional Facebook page, speaking on behalf of herself and her husband, Simon Floreani. Barham-Floreani was gushing in her enthusiasm for the event; an event she spoke at last year, having her photo taken with her husband, DeMoss, and Andrew Wakefield:
To hear health experts proudly speaking their truth (yes outside Australia they are actually allowed too…Cal Jam is the BEST “health event” we have ever been too.
While it is obviously professionally unwise for the Floreanis to be spruiking an anti-vaccine event, filled with anti-vaccine names, and other crackpots, on their professional Facebook page, it is clear that they are no risk of censure given the inability of the regulator, the Chiropractic Board of Australia – who have thumped their chest about this sort of thing in public – to regulate. The CBA is so ineffectual that maybe it will take a ministerial or even a Senate inquiry to prod the Board into deregistering recalcitrant chiropractors.
We have already seen Australian Vaccination Network member Simon Floreani cautioned by the CBA due to his anti-vaccinationism in this post – and how AVN member Jennifer Barham-Floreani has escaped censure for her anti-vaccine book, also contained in the preceding link, I am bemused. One of the names listed as a speaker at CalJam is Tim Shakespeare, himself under pressure from many regulatory sides. Nothing will happen to him either. It is to be expected.
None of this is a surprise. Immediately following the CBA’s chest-thumping of August 2013 Barham-Floreani took to the ABC and declared that the CBA’s warnings meant nothing for her and her like-minded anti-vaccinationists:
After pressure from medical authorities, the Chiropractic Board has decided to crack down on unscientific practices.
Chiropractors are blamed by doctors for spreading too much misinformation on the inoculation debate.
But high-profile chiropractors say they will continue providing information about both sides of the vaccination argument.
Chiropractor and author Jennifer Bahram-Floriani says it will not stop her colleagues from giving patients advice.
“Chiropractors will certainly be working towards making sure that the information that they convey to parents is the latest, up-to-date information that presents both sides of the vaccination debate,” she said.
“I think it would be very rare that there would be chiropractors giving only one side of the argument.”
It is adorable that Barham-Floreani claims she provides “both sides of the vaccination argument”. Her book’s vaccination chapter does nothing of the sort. Maybe she is the rarity to whom she refers?
Back to the list of speakers. I did some quick – and some not so quick – searches to see how these people think. You owe me big time. I’ll use the list as provided and promoted by Barham-Floreani. Quick descriptions in bold are mine:
ANDREW WAKEFIELD – obviously the king of the modern anti-vaccination movement, known to have a “callous disregard” for his underage targets.
BILLY DEMOSS – there isn’t a conspiracy theory he won’t jump on. Chemtrails, Sandy Hook hoax, anti-vaccine, anti-fluoride, Agenda 21, anti-GMO, 9/11 Truther and more. Remember your Casper Jonquil voice:
EDWARD GROUP – anti-vaccine chiropractor; conspiracy theorist; regular on Infowars; supplements seller.
CATHY WENDLAND-COLBY – anti-vaccine chiropractor.
BRAD GLOWAKI – anti-vaccine chiropractor; practice-building entrepreneur.
DANE DONOHUE – anti-vaccine chiropractor.
JAMES CHESTNUT – anti-vaccine chiropractor.
DANNY CONSTABLE – anti-medicine subluxationist (from what I can gather all chiros here are subluxationists).
DANE WIGINGTON – chemtrails specialist:
TIM YOUNG – anti-vaccine chiropractor.
JJ VIRGIN – promoter of fad diets and supplements; promoter of Mark Hyman (MMR/autism alternative doctor).
DEED HARRISON – anti-vaccine chiropractor.
TIM O’SHEA – anti-vaccine chiropractor.
JEANNE OHM – anti-vaccine chiropractor.
DAN MURPHY – anti-vaccine chiropractor.
FULLYRAW KRISTINA – anti-vaccine raw food advocate.
ADJUSTASAURUS REX (YEHAR our very own flesh and blood!!!) – anti-vaccine chiropractor Tim Shakespeare, who really refers to himself as this.
PATRICK GENTEMPO – anti-vaccine chiropractor; practice-building entrepreneur; appears on Infowars.
ANTHONY GUCCIARDI – claims to have treated his Lyme Disease with colloidal silver; natural health empire; regular on Infowars.
ALEX JONES – Big Daddy enraged conspiracy nutbag; Prison Planet; Infowars; lives whole life only 10 seconds from several catastrophic health events.
JEN FRANCO – nutritionist who often talks at DeMoss’ chiropractic business.
CAROL ANN MALIZIA – chiropractor who offers dubious treatments in her business, including breast thermography.
ROBERT SCOTT BELL – anti-vaccine conspiracy theorist; podcast on Natural News site.
JOHN MINARDI – makes a living teaching about the vertebral subluxation complex.
BARRY ANDERSON – anti-vaccine chiropractor.
I am really happy that many moderate chiropractors are standing up to these people. And it’s now happening all over the world. Because, if the resistance to the utter crackpottery such as CalJam doesn’t grow, your profession is doomed. In Australia we’re a little luckier in that we have legislation and regulation in place to hold these people to account. In the US this seems to be sorely lacking.
Still, in Australia, there appears to be little which can be done when the minority of the profession – the subluxationists and anti-vaccinationists – hold the sway on the boards of many representative associations around the country. For goodness sake the largest peak research organisation – the Australian Spinal Research Foundation – has a board which is 89% anti-vaccine, which is founded on the study of that which does not exist!
The regulator, the Chiropractic Board of Australia, promised a crack down over 18 months ago, along with random audits. How can anyone have any faith in them when this sort of thing is easily staring them in the face? Time to bring on an inquiry: