Health-Healing Bad Medicine Quacks and Grafters

Quacks and Grafters

Quacks and Grafters
Catalog # SKU3828
Publisher TGS Publishing
Weight 1.00 lbs
Author Name G. Strohbach
ISBN 10: 0000000000
ISBN 13: 0000000000000


Quacks and Grafters

Being An Exposé Of The State Of
Therapeutics At The Present Time,
With Some Reasons Why Such
Grafters Flourish, and
Suggestions To Remedy The
Deplorable Muddle

G. Strohbach, M.D.

Though written in a satirical vein, this book is intended as a warning to the medical profession and the public alike. And, while amusing, the wealth of information and comment on certain abuses in the healing art should lead to serious consideration.



In writing this booklet I do not pose as a Hercules come to cleanse the Augean stables of therapeutics. No power but that of a public conscience awakened to the prevalence of quackery and grafting in connection with doctoring can clear away the accumulated filth.

Like Marc Antony, I claim neither wit, wisdom nor eloquence; but as a plain, blunt man I shall "speak right on of the things I do know" about quacks and grafters. In writing of Osteopathy I claim the right to speak as "one having authority," for I have been on the "inside." As to grafting in connection with the practice of medicine I take the viewpoint of a layman, who for years has carefully read the medical literature of the popular press, and of late years a number of representative professional journals, in an effort to get an intelligent conception of the theory and practice of therapeutics.

I have not tried to write in a professional style. I have been reading professional literature steadily for some time, and need a rest from the dignified ponderosity of some of the stuff I had to flounder through.

I have just read an exposition of the beautiful and rational simplicity of Osteopathy. This exposition is found in a so-called great American encyclopedia that has been put into our schools as an authoritative source of knowledge for the making of intelligent citizens of our children. It is written by a man whose name, like that of the scholar James Whitcomb Riley describes, is "set plumb at the dash-board of the whole indurin' alphabet," so many are his scholarly degrees.

How impressive it is to look through an Osteopathic journal, and see exhaustive (and exhausting) dissertations under mighty names followed by such proof of profound wisdom as, A.M., M.S., D.O., or A.B., A.M., M.D., D.O. Who could believe that a man with all the wisdom testified to by such an array of degrees (no doubt there were more, but the modesty that goes with great learning forbade their display) could be imposed upon by a fad or fake? Or would espouse and proclaim anything that was not born of truth, and filled with blessing and benefaction for mankind?

Scholarly degrees should be accepted as proof of wisdom, but after reading such expositions as that in the cyclopedia, or some of those in the journals, one sometimes wonders if all the above degrees might not be condensed into the one-D.F.

As for dignified style in discussing the subject before me, I believe my readers will agree that dignity fits such subjects about as appropriately as a ten-dollar silk hat fits a ten-cent corn doctor, or a hod-carrier converted into a first-class Osteopath.

While speaking of dignity, I want to commend an utterance of the editor of the Journal of the American Medical Association, made in a recent issue of that journal. It was in reply to a correspondent who had "jumped onto" the editor of a popular magazine because in exposing graft and quackery he had necessarily implicated a certain brand of medical practitioners. The man who criticised the editor of the popular magazine impresses a layman as one of that class of physicians that has done so much to destroy the respect and confidence of intelligent students of social conditions for medical men as a class, and in the efficacy of their therapeutic agencies. Although the committee appointed by the great society, of which he is presumably a member, reported that more than half of the medical colleges in this country are utterly unfit by equipment to turn out properly qualified physicians; that a large per cent of these unworthy schools are little better than diploma mills conducted for revenue only, and in spite of the incompetency and shystering that reputable physicians, in self-defense and in duty to the public must expose, this man proclaims that the medical profession is "all but holy" in its care for the souls and minds as well as the bodies of the people. With all respect for the devoted gentlemen among physicians we ask, Is it any wonder that the intelligent laity smile at such gush? And this man goes on to say that "99 per cent. of the practicing physicians of the country belong to this genuine class."

Members of the American Medical Association may think that such discussions are for the profession, and should be kept "in the family." Perhaps they should, and no doubt it would be much better for the profession if many of the things said by leading medical men never reached the thinking public. But the fact remains that the contradictory and inconsistent things said do reach the public, and usually in garbled and distorted form. The better and safer way is, if possible, to see to it that there is no cause to say such things, or if criticisms must be made let physicians be fair and frank with the people, and treat the public as a party deeply concerned in all therapeutic discussions and investigations. And here applies the utterance of the editor of the Journal of the American Medical Association that I wanted to commend:

"The time has passed when we can wrap ourselves in a cloak of professional dignity and assume an attitude of infallibility toward the public. The more intelligent of the laity have opinions on medical subjects, often bizarre, it must be admitted, but frequently well grounded, and a fair discussion of such opinions can result only in a greater measure of confidence in and respect for the medical profession."

128 pages - 7 x 8½ softcover - Print size, 14 point font

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