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Paul Saladino Gets Railroaded By "The Doctors" On TV

Started talking with a high-performance coach who mentioned that a variation of the carnivore diet has worked for many of his clients.

He pointed me to Paul Saladino's work for more information (which Stef also mentioned briefly before) and one of the first things I was curious about was what kinds of arguments he'd make for the carnivore diet as opposed to a vegetarian diet.

So, after searching "paul saladino debate" on YouTube, I found this one:

Mary: [Raising her voice] "As an attorney, I would ask you, you're a medical doctor, is that correct?"

Paul: "Absolutely."

Mary: "And you are a psychiatrist, am I correct?"

Paul: "Right, as a residency in psychiatry."

Mary: "So what do you know about nutrition?"

Mary: [Raising her voice further and raising her finger now] "Where did you gain your background in nutrition?"

Paul: (tries to rebalance the power dynamics afer her dominant questioning by giving an order) "Listen, this is I think is a..."

Mary: [Nearly yelling now] "No, you listen to me and answer my question. Now I am asking you to tell us (uses "us" to leverage the group, framing it now as "it's all of us againt you alone") where your background 'M' and 'H' from."

Paul: (loses some power by answering the question) "I went to medical school and (now keeps some power by not answering the question fully with the name of the school and instead moving his response on to what he wants to address) I studied nutrition in medical school. And I studied nutrition independently. And one of the crazy things about medical school is that it teaches you how to read articles. I'm a doctor. I know how to read articles..."

Mary: [Speaks over him to interrupt him] "So, have you done any independent testing? Have you written any articles that was, as suggested by the physicians who've been here today?"

Paul: (Goes for the frame that what's most important for one's expertise and credibility is the acquisition of solid knowledge, not writing about it) "What does writing articles have to do with my knowledge of nutrition."

Mary: [Yells over him to interrupt him again] "Well because I could become you. I could be you as an expert because I 'read all of the data and all of the, um, articles on the subject'. Now I'm an expert? That doesn't make me an expert."

Paul: (Now tries and struggles to work around her frame to avoid directly disagreeing) "With the proper background and with the medical training, like...(goes for frame spreading instead, opting for a frame everyone can agree with) medicine needs to think about teaching doctors more nutrition in medical school.

Doctor: "I agree with that."

Paul: (Goes back to addressing Mary's frame now) "But, it is up to us to educate ourselves. Just because there's a degree that says 'a doctor' doesn't mean we have or don't have medical, nutritional knowledge. It's not fair..."

Mary: [Yells to interrupt him again] "The bottom line is you practice psychiatry, am I correct?"

Paul: "I practice medicine. I think..."

Mary: [Yells to interrupt him again] "You practice psychiatry, is that correct?"

Paul: "Medicine."

Mary: "So what makes you an expert in this?"

Paul: (starts off with "because" which sounds like he's now justifying himself) "Because..."

[Crowd starts clapping.]

Paul: (Restarts the sentence to start over his argument) "An expert in what? An expert in understanding human physiology? This is medicine. The separation of humans into organ systems doesn't serve the patient. To say that because I'm a psychiatrist I don't know about nutrition is a completely..."

Mary: "I didn't say that."

Paul: "That's what you were inferring."

Mary: "Your expertise is the mind."

Paul: "Well, where does the inflammation (in the mind) come from that causes depression and anxiety? It comes from the body! It doesn't come from the brain."

Mary: "It's a scary thought process that all you need to do is read articles to make you an expert. I want to know what kind of testing you've done. What kind of data you have. What you, yourself, have found regarding these issues other than what reliances on other people's findings."

Paul: "I'm not sure I understand your question because that's how *anyone* gains knowledge."

Mary: "No, listen to my question because you know I'm right."

[Crowd starts clapping again.]

Paul: [Laughing] "No, you're wrong."

Now, watching this, at first, I couldn't tell if Mary was serious.

Even over 10 seconds in, I was still thinking she might be joking with her obnoxiously loud tone.

But, by the end, I realized she was serious and it made me wonder if Saladino's work had caused significant harm or something.

As far as I know, though, that wasn't the case. She was just being a bully.

And she was so rude, in fact, that many of the commenters even agreed:

The problem with the attorney's approach is that they're not in a courtroom, so it was very much out of place.

And while she may have won that small crowd in that single TV room, she lost the hundreds of thousands of viewers watching at home.

As a matter of fact, many seem to have been pushed closer to Paul Saladino's side because of her overaggression (including myself, albeit I'm still not fully sold on the carnivore diet just yet).

Even more than that, the judge was so wrapped up in "winning" that she overfocused on the delivery of her arguments and neglected the content of them which cost her with the viewers who could pause, rewind, and realize that she wasn't even making sense at times:

However, the biggest mistake I see here was actually on Paul Saladino's side with a general rule from TPM that I totally agree with, especially for when dealing with bullies like this:

Always address the tone first, then the content

In my opinion, it was easy to tell from her aggressive loudness that she had the intention of steamrolling him. So, I would've lowered my warmth and checked her tone earlier on:

Mary: "So what do you know about nutrition? Where did you gain your background in nutrition?"

Paul: "Well, first, let me start by saying that's a weird way to speak to a guest."

Mary: "No, I am asking you to tell us where your background 'M' and 'H' from."

Paul: "I understand what you're asking me, I'm saying that the way in which you're asking me could be in a tone that's closer to mine."

Prevent her from getting the answers she wants and the interview from moving forward until she resolves her tone and then he can move forward with more power intact.


Lucio mentioned once that he had an idea for a course on interview power dynamics. I'd happily purchase that course and support it any way I can, I really hate seeing people get bullied in interviews.


Was going to leave this case study here because it's already long enough, but found the official video posted on the "The Doctors" YouTube channel, and even the comments there are pretty telling:

Turns out, the doctors may have diminished their own authority and shot themselves in the foot with their own behavior:

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Lucio BuffalmanoJackKavalierMats GRobertoPower Duck


Quick message that I see as a personal duty to stop scammers.

Terrible approach from the lawyer.

Which is really a pity because, in my opinion, Paul Saladino is a potentially dangerous person not to be trusted, actively avoided, and potentially probably best doing the opposite of what he says.

And you can say that even without medical knowledge, but only with power dynamics knowledge (which often maybe more helpful than medical knowledge anyway).


Paul (paraphrasing): we found this book in Germany with a lot of old studies that cannot be found anywhere, and we send people just there to get it, and we had it translated

The old marketing trick of the arcane knowledge hidden in old vaults.
Nice trick to kill a few birds with a  stone:

  1. Gain points with the "old arcane wisdom"
  2. Avoid scrutiny by other scientists since your sh*t is unpublished and unknown to all
  3. Have the "trump card" cause you can always hide behind those unpublished study that give you "superior knowledge"

That is the MO of someone with no interest whatsoever in sharing useful information.


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Important addendum:

Otherwise, awesome analysis, Ali!

Just in case it wasn't claer, mine was a note towards the person, not the analysis.

It actually adds even more importance to the analysis because it shows that if you use the wrong approach you yourself empower a potential scammer even while you think you're opposing him.

It's an important message to keep in mind.

Not too unlike what's happened with Trump, in my opinion.

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