I want to make clear that I have no problem with anyone questioning scientific "consensus" on an issue, whether it be HIV causing AIDS or global warming. But it has to be based on something. Duesberg has been making the same arguments about HIV for more than 20 years, and the same snide remarks about scientists who think the virus causes AIDS, oblivious to any of the research that has gone on in the meantime. He has been too lazy and arrogant to even change his rhetoric to take into account new findings. That to me is a sign of someone with a pathological inability to admit he is wrong, and yet he and some of his cronies managed to get themselves onto the South African presidential AIDS panel. So if Mitchel has reasons for doubting the scientific consensus amongst AIDS researchers, fine, but let him tell us what his scientific objections are. Telling us that it is just a big phamaceutical industry conspiracy won't cut it, and telling us that he doesn't know doesn't cut it either. The scientists who study AIDS have rejected all the hypotheses he proposes, so he needs to tell us why they are wrong to do so.
My "position" on this is that I DON'T KNOW whether HIV is the cause
of AIDS, whether it is an inoccuous MARKER that comes along (some of
the time) with AIDS and that something else is the cause
(environmental pollution that mutates cells that produce viruses, for
example), or whether what we are calling AIDS is even the same
syndrome in Africa as in the U.S. and elsewhere. I DON'T KNOW.
What I do know are many people, including relatives and close
friends, who have died horrible deaths when they were put on AZT.
Yes, now the argument is that the triple RetroVirals are effective.
We'll see. I've heard that argument repeatedly for each and every new
pharmaceutical industry drug that comes down the pike.
It didn't help keeping drugs low cost in Africa when Clinton bombed
the only modern pharmaceutical manufacturing plant in northern
Africa, in the Sudan, did it?
At 03:22 AM 2/16/2007, you wrote:
>Thanks for injecting some real world insight into this, Mandi, and
>underscoring the tragic results of the kind of misinterpretation of
>scientific results that Mitchel (perhaps unintentionally) and
>Matthias Rath (quite intentionally) engage in. And my apologies to
>Mitchel, it was Jonathan who linked to the Duesberg site, although
>perhaps Mitchel should clarify his own position on whether HIV is
>the cause of AIDS or not.
>On 2/16/07, Mandi Smallhorne
><<mailto:[log in to unmask]> [log in to unmask]> wrote:
>I live in a country that has the highest incidence of HIV/AIDS in
>the world; I am surrounded by it, and I have seen the very real
>impact of 'offhand' dismissal of what the website you link to calls
>the "HIV/AIDS hypothesis". Because our government once, and for
>quite a time, embraced the denialist point of view, we still have
>enormous problems getting people to get tested and get treated, and
>we have massive stigma. Just two weeks or so ago, a friend working
>in poor areas found a dying 17-year-old boy, isolated in a lean-to
>at the back of the family shack and left to die in appalling
>circumstances, ill-fed, untouched and untreated, with feet
>completely raw, and mind flipping over into psychosis. (She found a
>place for him to die in something resembling comfort, as she has
>done in innumerable cases like this. She deserves the Nobel!) Yet
>she and I have seen over and over again the remarkable impact of
>anti-retroviral meds, which turn dying people into people with a
>life to live - within weeks. That boy could still be in school
>instead of under the earth, if his family had not been affected by
>the prevailing stigma; had they not feared the drugs - I've come
>across plenty of people who were actually offered anti-retrovirals
>for sick family members and dithered, because of denialist messages
>they've received about how the drugs are poisons which a conspiracy
>of big pharma and evil capitalists want to shove down the throats of
>We have also seen the fantastic impact of a decent diet on poor
>people who have not yet progressed to full-blown status, so we're
>never going to gainsay the power of good nutrition and lifestyle;
>but there is a time when meds are the only option to save lives, and
>the denialists, those who treat the connection between HIV and AIDS
>as non-existent, shout down the use of drugs as toxins and so on. So
>people - little children - die and die and die in dreadful ways. The
>graves are raw and new and run in long rows across the veld near
>townships close to my home, topped with little rough wooden crosses,
>hand carved with names and ages: 19, 23, 34, 15, 29.... this
>terrible tragedy is in part the result of denialism, IMHO. We could
>have reduced both the incidence and the deaths hugely had our
>government not spent a prolonged period wandering in Wonderland
>(some are still there, chewing on beetroot, garlic and African
>potatoes as they sip their tea at the Mad Hatter's Tea Party!).
>Stay in Wonderland yourself if you like; but do be aware of the
>impact that feeding denialism can have in the real world.
>----- Original Message -----
>From: <mailto: [log in to unmask]>Jonathan Campbell
><mailto:[log in to unmask]>[log in to unmask]
>Sent: Friday, February 16, 2007 3:45 AM
>Subject: Re: Mitchel's Marxism & the Environment talk now on-line
>Oh dear, I guess I started another firestorm.
>All I can say to Michael Balter is: Balterdash!
>For those who are not close-minded:
>First, Carolyn Dean is one of those rare medical doctors who has
>studied a wide range of therapies, from pharmaceutical medicine to
>naturopathic medicine (decades of scientifically proven, documented
>therapies) to homeopathy (which, believe it or not, has scientific
>basis for some afflictions) to Chinese medicine (thousands of years
>of curative and restorative use of herbs), and even the weirdo ones
>(magnetic, electrical, etc.) that hold little promise. Any good
>health scientist or researcher follows up on strong anecdotal
>evidence, even if what they eventually find is the placebo effect.
>(Which is real in itself. The mind body connection is very powerful
>in its ability for healing. Read Jon Kabat-Zinn on this phenomenon.)
>This study for which she was primarily responsible, Death By
>Medicine, has not been refuted by any reputable sources. They merely
>ignore it. Other physicians who have studied the same phenomenon
>(iatrogenic death is its official name) put the number of deaths
>slightly lower, and their research is also carefully ignored by the
>press and the medical profession at large. If you are interested it
>(and I defy anyone to find anything wrong with the methodology) you
>can find it on the Life Extension Foundation website at:
>Second, as for adult stem cells, there is good research going on,
>but it is woefully underfunded because there is no profit potential.
>Here is but one example found in 10 seconds on google.
>Third, regarding my offhand comment about AIDS and HIV: The
>discussion of AIDS and HIV is far too long and complex for this
>mailing list. I suggest you start with the following website:
>This website and some of the ideas presented will challenge your
>understanding of the AIDS phenomenon. You have a choice. "You take
>the blue pill, the story ends, you wake up in your bed and believe
>whatever you want to believe. You take the red pill, you stay in
>wonderland, and I show you how deep the rabbit hole goes."
>(Morpheus, in The Matrix) The world is not what it seems.
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>This message was checked by NOD32 antivirus system.
>Contributing Correspondent, Science
><mailto:[log in to unmask]> [log in to unmask]