David “the awesome power of the moon” Tredinnick joins the Commons Science Committee

Andy McSmith

David Tredinnick, the long serving Tory MP for Bosworth, came to the nation’s attention for the first and last time in 1995 when his fellow MPs suspended him without pay for 20 days for being prepared to accept cash for asking parliamentary questions. He has another peculiar claim to distinction: he is an avid believe in homeopathic medicine. Five years ago, he waited patiently until almost 2 o’clock in the morning to deliver a long speech deploring the failure of the NHS to support homeopathy, which he upheld as a cure for HIV, TB, malaria, urinary infections, diarrhoea, skin eruptions, diabetes, epilepsy, eye infections, intestinal parasites, treatment from pregnancy to childbirth, cancer, gangrene, toxaemia and general injuries. The list, as he put it, “is endless.” In a previous speech, in 2001, he told MPs: ‘science has worked out that pregnancy, hangovers and visits to one’s GP may be affected by the awesome power of the moon’, to which in 2009 he added that phases of the moon influence the number of accidents, and blood clotting.

Though no Prime Minister has called Tredinnick to a ministerial post during his 26 years in the Commons, his fellow MPs have honoured him today by co-opting him to the all-party Science and technology Committee. “Their role is use science to inform policy-making. Someone with such incredibly odd views is not helpful,” said Imran Khan, head of the Campaign for Science and Engineering.

  • Jamie Pryde

    They let Osborne into the treasury so this comes as no surprise.

  • franch

    While a candidate’s non-science qualifications might usefully bring alternative views to the S&T committee, a MLitt followed by a short spell in stock-broking and sales and controversial views on medicine does not inspire confidence in the appointment.
    Indeed too many MPs of the major parties (and other establishment
    positions also) appear evermore like a ‘closed shop’ of similar social
    type and expensive educational backgound, inceasingly starting careers via a PPE or
    law or similar degree qualifications.

  • Jeremy Hunter

    I don’t see how that stops it being weird. The placebo has no chemical to block the painkillers and thus shouldn’t stop the painkillers working. Secondly, I eat apples all the time, in the full knowledge they are apples, that doesn’t mean they cure ailments. The same goes for sugar pills.

  • JonFrum

    So you don’t understand that you’re as bad as the American preacher?

  • Guy Chapman

    It’s more that he has pestered to be allowed on it, it’s been in his sights for a while I think. I suspect his first self-appointed task will be to remove the evidence check on homeopathy. Will he be leaving the Health Committee I wonder? I doubt he saw eye to eye with Sarah Wollaston on matters of quackery.

  • Jeremy Hunter

    How am I as bad as him? I don’t deny the age of the universe, what are you on about?

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