Tuesday, May 27, 2008

EU Woo-woo Crackdown

The EU's new consumer protection regulations took effect yesterday, outlawing the practices of several nonsense mongers. Under the new rules, fortune tellers, tarot card readers, psychics, and faith healers will have to offer disclaimers that their services are for entertainment purposes only and aren't scientifically proven. Of course, there's a certain level of selective enforcement here, since churches are exempt from the regulations under the auspices of being non-profit organizations. Tell that to the Pope's solid gold toilet seat. Still, this is a step in the right direction. Of course, Europe's psychics, psychotics, and con artists are upset about the new rules. They're claiming religious persecution, as the required disclaimers would imply that they don't actually believe in the crap they're peddling. They don't seem to understand, however, that it doesn't matter whether a snake oil salesman really believes his snake oil works. In the case of faith healers especially, they're hurting people whether they believe it or not. More details here.

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