Cuckoo 101

The following items are ways in which to identify your common or garden variety Midweek Cuckoo. I have come across all of these in the course of writing this blog, and will be adding to them over time.

  1. They use terms like ‘Big Pharma’, ‘the Man’ and ‘the Establishment’ in all seriousness
  2. They announce earth shattering scientific discoveries on their blog or website first
  3. They claim that common, everyday items like wire coat-hangers bent into a Y-shape, tinfoil and PhotoShop have powers not described on the packaging
  4. The ‘university’ where they got their degree is: a) a house in the suburbs, b) charges $350 for a degree, or c) requires only a 2,000 word essay and a note from your mom to get your doctorate
  5. They claim their powers/inventions don’t work in the presence of skeptics, scientists, doctors or recording devices
  6. Their spirit guide was related to Shirley McClaine in a past life
  7. They invoke Quantum Mechanics to explain macroscopic phenomena
  8. Their address of their clinic is a post office box
  9. They think anything that is 2,000 or more years old is automatically more advanced than anything discovered in the last decade
  10. They gained their knowledge of physics from watching Road Runner cartoons
  11. They claim to have worked for MK Ultra, Majestic 12, the CIA, the FBI, the KGB, the Illuminati, or all of these at once
  12. They claim that Gulf War Syndrome, Autism, Lupis, ADHD, Multiple Sclerosis, Tinnitus and Shaken Baby Syndrome are all caused by the same thing (and in the case of the last, it’s not shaking babies)
  13. Any evidence presented that is contrary to their claims is automatically part of a smear campaign, cover-up, or the work of any of the entities, or paid pundits of the entities, in Point 1
  14. They are willing to sell you their product or services for a few dollars (but only if you call right now), instead of cashing in on the riches offered by institutions like the JREF and the Nobel Prize Committee.
  15. In their web design and emails they: a) type in all capitals, b) make liberal use of the selection of font styles, sizes and colors on offer, c) italicize, underline or otherwise emphasise every fourth word, d) make use of randomly roaming apostrophes or single quotations marks, or e) all of the above
  16. They believe people are after them, their phone is tapped, and their every move is traced by the government (although if they live in the contintental US this may be true)
  17. They are the sole spokesperson for an entire alien race
  18. Their books are self-published
  19. The know who killed Lincoln/Lennon/JFK and the answer isn’t Booth/Chapman/Oswald
  20. They have the only known cure for cancer, HIV, autism or death but can only administer it in Mexico
  21. Their laboratory is in their basement or backyard
  22. They live in a compound with their extended family, various followers, a range of assault weapons, and are seen at the local mall purchasing large amounts of kool-aid or nike sneakers
  23. They think that the eighties television series “V” was a documentary
  24. They compare themselves to Galileo
  25. They compare everyone else to Hitler
  26. The invoke the deathbed conversions or secretly held beliefs of Einstein, Newton, Darwin or Pasteur in support of their theory
  27. When their embarrassment of a laboratory is finally closed due to 30 years without any significant evidence of ESP, they claim it was just ‘time’ and that they don’t need to keep proving what has already been proven
  28. They think reality is a subjective experience
  29. They believe that the plural of ‘anecdote’ is ‘evidence’
  30. They think that being open-minded applies to everyone except themselves
  31. They claim that were the ‘truth’ known: a) all scientists/ pharmacists/ doctors would lose their jobs, b) the sky would fall, c) western society as we know it would collapse, and d) this is a good thing
  32. They use the term ‘Darwinism’ to describe evolution
  33. They claim that despite your holding several degrees in related fields, and having 20 years experience in the subject at hand, you are not yet ready to understand their theories. The frequency of use of this argument is generally inversely proportional to the education and experience of the person using it.
  34. They are incapable of restricting themselves to the use of only one exclamation mark at a time.
  35. They use the term ‘allopathic medicine’ as if it weren’t tautology.
  36. They invent a magic person-finding box that defies the known laws of the universe, but a psychic has to be called in to improve on the accuracy of the readings.

Inspirations and other resources:


15 Responses to “Cuckoo 101”

  1. Con-Tester Says:

    Another cuckoo dead give-away (vaguely related to #5, #24 & #26) that often puts in an appearance when the claims start showing cracks is to declare the challenger “not yet ready to understand”. This attempts to stifle any further discussion and at the same time establishes the cuckoo’s intellectual superiority (!!!).

    The sterile arrogance of this tactic, however, totally escapes the cuckoo.

  2. Added thanks 🙂

  3. Criticism of the cuckoo’s writings in respect of expressional aspects (i.e. style, lucidity, cogency, grammar, spelling, structure and presentation), rather than of the ideas they intend to convey, are always dismissed by asserting the primary importance of the ideas over their “trivial” packaging. But Grade 3 prose very rarely shelters anything beyond Grade 3 thought, and a grubby bag rightfully casts suspicion on its contents.

  4. Thanks for this, it’s been really helpful. I am clearly cuckoo.

  5. So should I give up my aspirations of becoming a psychic, homeopathic, feng shui, creation scientist thats been anally probed by a grey humanoid aliens while wearing a tinfoil hat and doesn’t believe in the religion of Darwinism who has the only known cure for AIDS thats locked behind the closed doors of the CIA, FBI, and NRA?

    What to do now?

    I only have 2 apples (a PowerMac G5 and a PowerBook) so the other three must be hiding somewhere … I knew it was a cover-up.

    Love the site moonflake!


  6. I love this entry, but I use Big Pharma in discussing some topics. Does displaying just one of these descriptions make one cukoo? Let me add that hubby is a doc and I believe in medicine. I just believe that there are medicines that are effective outside of chemical pharmacology. Think Marinol vs. marijuana.

    No where near giving up Cipro.

  7. The 1980s TV series V was a documentary. When you scratched P.W. Botha you found a groot krokodil.

  8. I’m glad I found your site.
    Great list, Moonflake.
    So true!

  9. The truth is out! Heaven be praised! 🙂

    That list is dead on. What’s sad is how many people fall for the propaganda.

    Your blog slogan gave me a laugh!

  10. Darth_Morbius Says:

    Hmmmm…..I find it VERY interesting that one may apply ALL of the seven warning signs of bogus science to the “device” used by Danie Krugel to find missing people.

    Pity I didn’t see this before, I would have loved to include it in my original letter of complaint that I sent to the Carte Blance Producers… oh well, at least it goes a lot further to strengthen my resolve against his supporters…

    Also – LOVED the Skeptico site! Spent some time reading through the “cult” section and giggling at the silliness of the Scientologists…. I mean really… how can ANYONE fall for that shit!?

    I suppose we should be grateful that hasn’t gotten a foothold here in SA…

    Thx again for a gr8 site, moonflake!

  11. hasn’t got a foothold in SA? There’s a scientology center in Bree Street!

    Thanks to all the new people for the supportive comments, BTW 🙂

  12. Darth_Morbius Says:

    OMG….didn’t realize they had a centre in SA…my apologies!

    At least they are far quieter here than in the US….must admit that I have NEVER seen or heard anyhting from the SA chapter…

    Maybe they just get together late at night and give each other “readings”… 🙂


    It’s usually hard to tell because their first wave of attack generally involves trying to sell you Dianetics and then offering a free personality test. They don’t tell you it’s a religion right off the bat.

  14. […] are of course many more such warning signs, and no-one says it better than Moonflake. Below, I have taken the liberty to list some of her eloquent and always entertaining warnings that […]

  15. […] are of course many more such warning signs, and no-one says it better than Moonflake. Below, I have taken the liberty to list some of her eloquent and always entertaining warnings that […]

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