Well, how many herbal panaceas given their female “inventors” last name that sound kinda like Casia spelled in reverse do you think there are? Essiac is definitely the answer to the question, no doubt at all. And even given that there may be, it’s not like we’re limited to how many threads we can start, or threadstarting is terribly arduous. If the OP really is dissatisfied, he sure can start another.
I have no problem with tangents or side discussions or WAGS or even joking around in threads, even GQ threads. Heck knows I do enough of it. My problem with that particular one was that so much of it happened before a serious answer was given, and after, with no attempt at all to answer the question asked. And QED’s second response of (paraphrased) “Yeah, like I said.” just felt straight up jerkish. No, not like he said at all - it may *be *snake oil, but that’s not its name.
I would have been entirely comfortable with an answer like, “The name you’re looking for is Essiac or Essiac Tea. Unfortunately, it’s on Quackwatch’s list at this link, and it probably doesn’t work at all, or if it does, it’s due to the placebo effect.” Or, “The Essiac that WhyNot linked to might be it, but Quackwatch lists it as useless, so I wouldn’t use it if I were you.”
I don’t think it warranted an Official Warning or anything. If it had been a thread with an answer that required more than a single word, or a question that hadn’t been answered yet, “Knock it off” might have been the better way to go, but as the question was a very simple factual one, not a debate, there wasn’t really a reason to leave it open.
And I’ll also note that it was left open, for at least two hours, after being reported, until QED’s second post. If he hadn’t pushed the jerkitude, it probably would have stayed open.