I regularly get emails asking me something along the lines of “is this website bullshit?” Most of the time the answer is easy. It’s a bigger truckload of bullshit than the annual haul from a cattle farm.
But if I answered every one of these emails, I would spend all of my time answering these emails. So, here is an incomplete list of bullshit websites to be used as a quick answer whenever someone asks me if something is bullshit, complete with links to analysis on why they’re bullshit. Why “incomplete?” Because I will keep adding to the list as I continue to find new and interesting bullshit. Enjoy!
Foodbabe.com- I may have written about her once or twice.
Mercola.com- There is no quackery too wrong for Mercola to peddle. His latest book is called Fat for Fuel, and it shows that he’s hopping on the buttered coffee trend about five years too late. Here’s a rundown of coverage on Mercola from Bad Science Debunked, and here’s a thoroughly deserved shredding from Gorski.
Bulletproof Executive- claims overpriced 600 calorie hot buttered coffee reduces your appetite and gives you energy. Yes, you’re less hungry and have more energy after you’ve consumed 600 caffeinated calories. He also claims he can raise your IQ. The only thing he’s proven that he can raise is his net worth. Total bunk.
Naturalnews.com- He’s accused Jimmy Kimmel of hate speech for saying that vaccines worked. That’s one of the least crazy things he’s said in a long, fascinating history of fuckery. If he said the sky was blue, I would suspect it was because it had turned purple. Besides, Mike Adams already admitted it was all satire. Ahem.
Modern Alternative Health- Kate Tietje rebranded modernalternativemama.com into the misleading Modern Alternative Health, leaving out that it’s not healthy to deny your child vaccines, benadryl, epipens, or all forms of real medicine like she recommends. If she had a bigger following, she’d be the most dangerous Mommy blogger on the internet.
Realfarmacy.com- I get emailed about this one more often than most. Folks, they can’t even spell ‘pharmacy’ correctly. Just like the Food Babe, they think your microwave is killing you. That’s some grade-A, prime crazy right there.
Collectiveevolution.com- They have the cure for every disease that THEY don’t want YOU to know about. Suuuuuure. Sell crazy somewhere else, we’re all stocked up here.
mindunleashed.com- Dawn Pederson of Dawn’s Brain did such a wonderful job on these blog entries of Facebook Pages You Need To Stop Sharing From, and of course, The Mind Unleashed made the list. It’s a mish-mash of pseudo-intellectual, pseudo-spiritual, pseudoscience.
Moms Across America- Zen Honeycutt runs MAM and holds the distinction of being the most shrill person on this list and having the name most likely to be mistaken for a dietary supplement. She’s obsessed with Roundup, running a bullshit study on Roundup in breastmilk that was later debunked, and is known for harassing scientists and anybody who disagrees with her. For someone named Zen, she’s… poorly named.
Goop- Gwyneth Paltrow’s playground of Los Angeles based woo. I don’t even know where to start. If it comes from Paltrow, it’s probably full of shit. Just remember, she suggests putting rocks in your vagina. That’s not where rocks go. It’s a vagina, not Donald Trump’s face.
spiritscience.com- Now with Hollow Earth!
Infowars.com- If you’ve heard of Alex Jones, an inflamed hemorrhoid in human form, you’ve heard of Infowars. He was sure Obama was coming to take our guns (he wasn’t), that Monsanto was poisoning us (they weren’t), that Trump was a great choice for president and he’s now consulting for Trump (make it stop), and that Sandy Hook, 9/11, and any other bombing is a false flag. He also makes money on his website selling disaster preparedness kits while telling people that imminent disaster is coming. Convenient.
Whale.to- A website known for only two things: conspiracy theories and being absurdly wrong.
Thinking Moms Revolution- This group of mothers is sure they can treat their children of autism with
abuse a variety of unproven treatments, including chelation, oxygen chambers, and bleach enemas. Their advice is dangerous and harmful for children.
Vandana Shiva- Vandana Shiva spreads fake news about GMOs like my cat spreads her legs for belly rubs (also, my cat is a belly rub slut).
March Against Monsanto- They never met a fact about genetics, biotechnology, or agriculture that they let into their bubble.
GMO Inside- Do you think these are wide eyed activists trying to help green the planet? They are funded by people who will make a lot more money if you believe that GMOs are the devil. And they’ll use any talking point that they think sells.
Organic Consumers Association- I wouldn’t give a shit if this was just people who wanted to find and support local farmers. But this is not the case. They’re telling people that vaccines don’t work and spreading fear about biotech. And not a bit of it is backed by science.
National Vaccine Information Center- This is poorly named. Gorski and SciBlogs has this one covered.
Dr. Tenpenny On Vaccines- Dr. Sherri Tenpenny is one of the notoriously anti-vax doctors. She’s famously talked about missing nearly an entire year of school with multiple vaccine preventable diseases “but look at how healthy she is.” This is called survivors bias, because remember, not all children survived these disease.
Edited to add since original post:
Environmental Working Group (EWG): The group famous for bringing us the “Dirty Dozen” and “Clean Fifteen,” they like to people who have enough money for food and sunscreen to buy fancier food and sunscreen by scaring them and saying the stuff they’re buying is killing them faster than starvation and skin cancer. And that’s their brand, telling upper middle class people to buy more expensive shit while not saying a word about the actual toxic shit that’s happening to poor people. Hint: maybe say something about Flint, MI, if we’re going to believe that you give a shit about toxins. Because right now you’re bitching about a lit match and ignoring a raging forest fire.
Erin At Health Nut News- Dr. Mercola’s girlfriend has a website. By a few accounts from people who have met her, she seems nice. But she’s also about as full of shit as Mercola. She heavily buys into the conspiracy that alternative medicine doctors were murdered in some effort to silence them because… who the fuck knows. Don’t try to understand crazy. Just back away slowly before the stench gets on you.
Paleo Pete Evans- Once a pizza chef from Australia, Evans went Paleo haaaard. I mean he bought into every bit of paleo woofuckery you could find short of raising chickens and calling them “new age dinosaurs.” He co-wrote a cookbook for children and infants that was delayed from publication because it had a “paleo baby formula” that would have likely given a baby vitamin A poisoning. Let this serve as a good reminder that paleo baby food is the tit.
Freelee the Banana Girl- again hailing from Australia, Freelee is a vegan blogger who, quite the opposite of Pete with his moderately low carb lifestyle, tells people to carb themselves and eats up to 50 bananas a day. She claims that all the carbs rebalanced her metabolism (no), and when her followers tell her they’re not getting the same results she tells them they just have to… keep doing the same thing that’s not working. She talks down the amount of exercise she does, saying it’s as low as 20 minutes a day, but when she’s not being so damn defensive she cops to being an exercise fiend.
The Truth About Cancer- this website claims that we have the cure for cancer and it’s everything that THEY don’t want YOU to know about. Frankincense, essential oils, raw foods, coffee enemas and eating a vegan diet and a bunch of glasses of (organic) juice. No.
Crazy Sexy Cancer- Kris Carr was a young beautiful up and coming actress who got cancer and bravely didn’t get conventional treatment, instead going for yoga, a lot of raw food, and having some guy with an avocado farm look at her blood under a microscope. Well, the guy was “Dr.” Robert. O. Young and he was brought up on fraud charges for misrepresenting his medical credentials (I think that’s legal speak for “fake doctor”). Furthermore, Carr still has cancer. It is and always has been an incredibly slow moving cancer that will, sadly, inevitably cause her a lot of medical problems. This site misrepresents that she is “healing” her cancer through diet.
livingtraditionally.com- Think about what happened in “traditional” times when you got polio. You fucking died of polio. “Living Traditionally” is not a great advertisement for a website on health. One of their more entertaining articles says “Cancer is a GMO pesticide DNA seed designs and the treatment is used on vegetables and fruit.” I can’t even, and you shouldn’t either.
Living Whole (livingwhole.com)- Big pushers of epigenetics but great at ignoring GENETICS, the blogger who runs the site blames her Crohn’s disease on epigenetics, but… genetics? Genetics anyone? Anyone? Buehller? I will say this about Megan, she seems like a genuinely nice person who’s trying to manage an incredibly difficult disorder. I like that she’s a thinker, and I don’t think she’s in the high-powered business of selling something like many of these sites are. She’s a single mom to five kids, two of whom she adopted from Africa while she was still married. Though I disagree with her on a lot, I get the sense that she’s trying to be healthy in difficult and painful circumstances. However… the health information she dispenses? Still factually inaccurate.
POLITICS- this section is just for political sites. Though many suggested adding Fox and MSNBC, they are biased but their reporting is generally at least based in fact even if the commentary moves the narrative a percentage away from the actual story. My criteria for putting a site in here is if the reporting is so consistently biased that the facts are obscured past the point of being able to trust the site at face value. Please note, I will attempt to keep an equal number of left and right leaning sites listed.
USUncut/Palmer Report- It appears that USUncut has shut down and has been replaced by the Palmer Report (run by the same person), Bill Palmer. A recent headline was “Someone was willing to sacrifice useful idiot Devin Nunes.” A lot of the article is speculative commentary and presents itself as authoritative. But truly, that’s most of the site. Not quite fake, but not really reliable.
DailyKos- most of the articles in this site are commentary from users without much vetting or fact checking. Though some have an inkling of truth, I’ve found that you have to go digging for the real story and it’s often far less inflammatory than their headlines lead you to believe. This article has the headline ” Sen. Chris Murphy: trump Is Dragging Us Into Another War & No One Is Talking About It” and, typically for DailyKos, the content does not reflect that. The quotes from Senator Murphy urges his fellow senators to discuss the American occupation in Syria, but “no one is talking about it” is clickbait. And that’s what you get at DailyKos, it’s catnip for the left.
Occupy Democrats- Every so often they share a meme that I agree with. And the rest of the time, they’re writing headlines like “Bill Maher Just Destroyed Trump & Republicans Over Trumpcare’s Implosion” and “A Top Congressman Just Called Trump A “Very Evil Man” For A Good Reason.” Okay, Trump isn’t “destroyed” by anything a comedian said, and no matter what very good reason a Congressman had for calling Trump evil, this isn’t news. These are insults that entertain us. This site is clickbait. Move on.
BlueNationReview/ShareBlue- It’s fine if you want to get information on what’s happening in your political party, really. But when the website you visit has headlines claiming that Maureen Dowd “masquerades as Trump” to bash Hillary with no evidence as such, it’s clickbait masquerading as news.
RealTimePolitics- These are the links your “the sky is falling” friend sends you to alert you that, indeed, all the bad things are happening at once and it’s because of this clickbait headline that they read about a republican on an official sounding website. I mean, if I read “BREAKING: Trump Officially Accused of TREASON” and I didn’t know any better, I’d buy into it. But the article has no “official” accusation of treason, and likewise the rest of the articles on the site are sensationalist at best and bullshit at worst.
Breitbart- What to say about an alt-right website so repugnant that they’ve said women shouldn’t be allowed to study science? I think that’s some bullshit that speaks for itself.
The Blaze- the soon to be former home of white supremacist barbie Tomi Lahren and other notable people who yell for a living is a bastion of cherry picking in order to live in their bubble and serve their base. For example, Dana Loesch seems to have forgotten all the liberal outcry about the Stanford rape case in her attempt to yell about SJWs in this piece.
Red Flag News- A recent post said “Canada passes bill banning criticism of Islam, criticizing Christianity okay.” Upon investigation, the bill was aimed to quell the public climate of hate and fear and include crimes against Muslims as hate crimes, not stop criticism. But I can see how Christians would think this means they’re being criticized by telling them they can’t burn down mosques anymore. Ahem. If you need further proof that they’re bullshit, they have a page explaining that they’re not bullshit because they’re asked that so frequently. Sure you’re not, slugger.
WorldNetDaily- WND is a combination of every far right talking point mashed with every evangelical Christian talking point. Abortion? Here’s a baby born out of rape to tell you why abortion is bad in all cases. Muslims immigrated to the US? It’s bad because… it’s bad. The AHCA not passing despite having a government run by all republicans? It’s the democrat’s fault, Obamacare is a disaster, and don’t worry they’ll fix it, they just didn’t have seven years to prep for this thing they told you they’d do for seven years. Good luck squeezing anything resembling news from WND.
LifeNews- Do not ever expect an unbiased story on abortion from this site. Don’t worry whores, you only have sex so that you can kill babies. Jesus knows this. And an abortion at two days kills a fully formed 7lb baby with long lucious hair who already knows they want to be a neurosurgeon when I didn’t know what I wanted to be when I was 22. Well played, LifeNews!
I’ll continue to update as more questions/suggestions for websites arrive. It’s not a hard and fast rule, but one of the best ways to figure out if something is bullshit? If you have to ask, odds are it’s bullshit.