Saturday, June 16, 2018

#2029: Alex Moroz

Alex Moroz is the director of the Integrative Sports Medicine program at NYU Langone Medical Center’s Rusk Rehabilitation. Moroz is a trained acupuncturist. Now, when acupuncture is put to the test in well-designed studies, it’s performance is disappointing – it consistently does no better than placebo. How do you think Moroz responds to that? “There is a body of literature that argues that the whole approach to studying acupuncture doesn’t lend itself to the Western reductionist scientific method,” says Moroz. So, when things are studied with some rigor and psychological biases are actually controlled for and Moroz’s favored remedy turns out not to work, Moroz doesn’t change his mind – no, hecannot be wrong; it must be realitythat is wrong, including the whole of science and evidence. And then he throws in the word “reductionist” as a derogatory moniker. There is nothing reductionist about scientific testing, of course. The word doesn’t actually meananything in the context in which he uses it – it’s just there to signal that Moroz is an upward-gazing spiritualbeing: don’t you vulgarly reductionize him, you small-minded ad boring slaves of accountability. 

Of course, acupuncture is not the only woo Moroz defends. Moroz also defends cupping, no less – because “it makes sense” to him and because it’s ancient wisdom, like bloodletting and witch burning. Cupping received some attention after Michael Phelps advertised for it in 2016, and one is a poor woomeister who doesn’t jump to the defense of the latest fad.

Diagnosis: Don’t let this nincompoop come anywhere near you if you actually suffer from anything, and don’t listen to his advice. Alex Moroz is a loon – he’s a snowflake loon who means well, to be sure, but confidence in one’s own convictions and intuitions is on its own no good foundation for giving advice. To be sure, he probably knows something about real medicine, too, but you’ll be better off with those who don’t mix their knowledge with silly nonsense.

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