In the comments, Timothy Beneke wrote:
My experience with a friend who had unexplained stomach pain was instructive. She saw 6 â€œexpertsâ€, 3 who worked for fixed salaries at institutions (Kaiser, Stanford, etc.) and 3 who were in the marketplace getting paid based on what they brought in each year. The three who were on fixed salaries were professionally cordial, and openly admitted that they could not say with confidence what was causing her pain. The three who were not on fixed salaries were very touchy-feely and charming and spoke with complete confidence about the cause.
Wow. This reminds me of my surgeon, Eileen Consorti, telling me that the operation she recommended would help me, that there was evidence for this, and then — when I couldn’t find any evidence — telling me she would find it and never doing so. She would have gotten thousands of dollars for that operation. It also reminds me of my dermatologist prescribing a medicine that didn’t work and, until I did an experiment that showed it didn’t work, having no idea it didn’t work. He got paid in any case.