P. T. Barnum, Suckers, and “Detox”

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Phineas Taylor "P.T." Barnum Profitable scams and fads come and go.
Phineas Taylor “P.T.” Barnum
Profitable scams and fads come and go.

Any “Detox” regimen offers promise,

And meaning,

Exactly equal to the specific definition of the “toxins” involved, their harms, that the remedy really removes them and really improves your health.

If they’re all vague, or completely undefined, as is the norm

Then “detox” is state of the art for the stone age, or a cult, or faith healing on a stage.

It’s a scam, in short, pretty words offering no certain outcome except money spent.

Money for hot air: poof!

Leeches and blood-letting and animal sacrifices to treat basically any ailment were all the rage for centuries…

Same deal with “toxins.” So trendy, vague, unproven, popular. Almost a new religion! Fads come and they go, cloaked in the ideas and fears of the day, and later folks wonder how anyone could have been so gullible.

Toxins are killing us, it’s a pandemic, that’s why we’re… living longer than ever before?

Same deal. All heat, no light. Heat sells product, though, lots and lots of product.

P.T. Barnum put it well more than a century ago:

“There’s a sucker born a minute.”

There sure is, P.T. There sure is.

P.T. would heartily approve of “detox” treatments: what a scam! Easy money!

Some things never change, do they?

Now I wait for the words of angry scam artists and


We’ll see.


  1. Good points!!!! I think about when I was a young nurse, back in the 80s, all the stuff we used to think was so cutting edge (like 10mls of MgS04 given in the buttocks of pregnant women in pre-eclampsia, or administration of Ribavirin as the treatment for RSV) – seems so incredibly antiquated now.
    I hear colonics are the rage – I am assuming that is part of the ‘detox’ movement(no pun intended). Seems like we might be going backwards. If we are concerned with toxins, perhaps we should eat less fast food, use less anti-bacterial ingredients and start making our food from scratch (not out of the box) and muck around outside in the garden, in the fresh air and sunshine.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Toxins are both real and illusory. When you see an actual specific toxin remedied in a verified way, fantastic. When you “purge toxins” and pay for it, that’s where P.T. starts to get excited… Thanks for your feedback – Greg

      Liked by 1 person

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