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Times publishes scurrilous John Moore Op-Ed piece against “denialists”


Second mistake of defenders of HIV?AIDS paradigm

As the UN “AIDS at 25” delegates depart, and probably also as a consequence of the Harper’s March issue coverage of the questionable science of HIV?AIDS, both in theory and in its drug trials, the New York Times today publishes a counter attack on the “denialists” by John Moore, a Cornell scientist whose happy exploitation of the ruling paradigm is matched by his scathing contempt for those who question it, with the exception of Peter Duesberg, that he doesn’t dare mention, it appears.

Like Robert Gallo’s precipitate response to the Harper’s article, Deadly Quackery is a political error that probably has Anthony Fauci wringing his hands at the crumbling of his highly successful strategy, which has over two decades kept the issue from the public gaze, of banning mention of the dispute in the public media. Now he has not only Gallo’s unfortunate and clumsy defense of the status quo to worry about, but John Moore’s equally ill thought out fatwa.

Presumably the Times editors feel that this will help defend them against the threat of the Harper’s article, and take eyes off their record in this affair. But we doubt it. The article, a Web level diatribe, is so poorly stated that it will raise questions in the mind of any worldly reader all over again, as soon as any independent commentator on the HIV?AIDS debacle gets a piece on the same page in reply.

Of course, the Times would be wise not to allow any such reply. For the newspaper’s record in this regard is tragically an embarrassment to their reputation more excruciating that the Jayson Blair affair, because it involves public irresponsibility on the part of the editors and the science reporters which has apparently contributed to the illness and death of tens of thousands of people around the globe. That is true if the best scientific literature is to be believed, and presumably it can be, on the basis that the work of the skeptics that the Times has ignored and dismissed is the most intensely peer reviewed of all.

Meanwhile, John Moore’s achievement is to present startling evidence of the contempt in which he and (the worldly reader will assume) other scientists supporting the paradigm hold those who legitimately question the HIV=AIDS assumption which serves them so well, but visibly serves the AIDS patients of the world so ill. Not simply his contempt for the questioners, either, but for the process of science itself.

Let’s deconstruct this piece, which contains unscientific statements of such blatant calumny as to bring the reputation of Cornell itself into question.

A considered reply to it might go as follows:

Mainstream nonscience in HIV?AIDS

John Moore, in “Deadly Quackery”, wants to tell the world that “H.I.V. causes AIDS”, and that “this is not a controversial claim but an established fact, based on more than 20 years of solid science. It is as certain as the descent of humans from apes and the falling of dropped objects to the ground.” He says he is forced to repeat the obvious, because lately a “bizarre theory” has gained ground that HIV is harmless, and that antiretroviral drugs cause rather than treat AIDS. This dangerous idea has emerged as a genuine menace in the US and in South Africe, he writes, where it has encouraged President Thabo Mbeki to slow access to such drugs, so that only a quarter of those who need them receive them.

Sophisticated readers of the Times might think, on the contrary, that such an adamant denial that there is anything fundamentally wrong with AIDS raises questions all of its own. Why has this apparently “bizarre” revisionism gained a foothold if it has nothing to be said for it, particularly with such a notably intelligent black leader in Africa as Thabo Mbeki?

The answer, of course, is that there is something very visibly wrong with the scientific ideology that has held sway for twenty years, and the supporters of the ruling wisdom have no convincing answers to explain it. The name that John Moore apparently hesitates to mention with the same disrespect as other “denialists”, as he calls them, in his piece is Peter Duesberg.

From almost the beginning of the era of HIV/AIDS, where the genetically challenged retrovirus HIV has been blamed for all of AIDS, this senior Berkeley retrovirologist, who is recognized by many as one of the best thinkers in science, has reviewed and dismissed every last reason advanced by its promoters as to why HIV should cause AIDS. His last comprehensive review in 2003, published in the Journal Biosciences of the respectable Indian National Academy of Sciences, presented a revisionist view of what is happening in AIDS, in which all the inconsistencies and insults to accepted science and common sense which the conventional wisdom embodies are no longer present. Meanwhile the co-authored paper also shows that of 17 predicted outcomes which are implied by the ruling HIV=AIDS paradigm, not one has been realized.

Moore, whose career is flourishing as a proponent of HIV and researcher with funding premised on it as the true cause of AIDS, likes to call the independent view that HIV=AIDS should be reassessed “denialism”, so that it is tarred with the political brush of holocaust denialism. But contrary to his implication that the view is nonscience, it is a case closely argued on a scientific basis by professional and layman alike. Those with scientific and professional qualifications who publicly object to the paradigm number in the thousands, including two Nobelists, and the intelligent laymen that join them are responding to inconsistencies which often insult common sense.

These inherent problems date from the initial claim of Robert Gallo that HIV was the “probable” cause of AIDS, unlikely in itself since his research had found the virus in only one third of patients with AIDS, which argued to the contrary. In fact, Robert Gallo could be said to have been the first scientist to prove that HIV was not the cause of AIDS, if only anybody had troubled to read his papers before reporting his false conclusion. But then, they were not yet published in Science at the time of the press conference led by Margaret Heckler, President Reagan’s secretary of health, who was notoriously anxious to have a political solution to what was proving a thorn in the side of the Administration.

The inconsistencies have only mounted with every passing year: no longer is it believed that HIV kills T-cells, for example, once the very lynchpin of the theory of why and how it causes AIDS. The most recent problem is the mainstream studies which show that the antibodies detected by the HIV test (it detects antibodies, not the virus) are completely unable to be transferred through heterosexual sex, as one would expect. Where does that leave the current political brouhaha about whether AIDS aid can go to organizations advising condoms? Where in fact does it leave the whole concept of the infectious pandemic sweeping the world, which according to last week’s UN discussions now demands $20 billion for preventive action and ARVs if we are to slow it?

These studies only confirm the many other signs that the AIDS is not and never was an infectious epidemic in the United States either, since as was pointed out in the early nineties, the prediction of a heterosexual epidemic was not then nor has it afterwards ever been realized. The rise and fall of the numbers of AIDS cases never correlated with the graph of HIV prevalence, which has remained around one million people in the US for the duration of the phenomenon.

An epidemic which is not infectious through HIV is not something that should be treated with anti-HIV drugs, which is the rationale for the current range of antivirals given patients, the triple cocktail regimen of mixed AZT, ddI and protease inhibitors for which so much is claimed. That is, unless those claims are true, in which case their effect is due to some other effect than interfering with HIV.

Since reports of the beneficial effect of the triple cocktail or HAART drug regimen are widespread – in fact, in our experience that is the chief reason why any questioning of HIV is initially rejected by both patients and the health workers who treat them – it is clear that they do initially help in some manner, though not necessarily because they defeat HIV. They must be effective because they substitute for a weakened immune system, by attacking viruses and other infections directly and, some studies indicate, even helping to restore the nutrient balance essential for the proper working of the immune system.

To make fun of Manto Tshabalala-Msimang, the Health Minister of South Africa, and of the vitamin salesman Matthias Rath and their advisors Roberto Geraldo (an MD and tropical disease expert who is a specialist in HIV testing at Cornell) and David Rasnick for promoting vitamins and nutrients in lemon, garlic and olive oil as better boosters for a failing immune system than ARV’s is a childish insult rooted in Moore’s disrespect for their skepticism on the HIV paradigm.

In fact the nutritional approach makes perfect sense if the cause of severe immune decline is not HIV, as the incessant paradigm propaganda has it, but an illness induced by extreme drug use in the US, or extreme malnourishment, severe poverty and TB, malaria and the many tropical diseases of Africa, now to be compounded by misapplied drugs of severe toxicity. Anyone who trumpets the saving grace of the current HAART regimen has to explain the appalling side effects, and why nearly half of current AIDS deaths in the US are due to liver disease, which is a drug symptom not even on the AIDS list.

Since there is not yet any specific, scientific, clinching evidence for the HIV=AIDS position John Moore is married to, still no paper to reference which proves the theory, or even details the mechanism, which the mainstream theorists acknowledge is still a “conundrum”, let alone provides any preventive or cure, even after a twenty year search costing billions of dollars, perhaps it is time that he and his colleagues admitted the questionability if not failure of their favored hypothesis, and respected other positions.

In particular, he might stop using a degree of venomous hostility to the idea of opening up the debate which suggests that it is a purposeful effort to block it off with force and verbal violence, rather than defeat it with argument and evidence.

As it happens “letter writer to South African newspapers” David Rasnick is a colleague and coauthor of Peter Duesberg’s at Berkeley who developed an independent view of HIV and AIDS after years of working on developing protease inhibitors in the pharmaceutical industry, so his familiarity with the mainstream literature on the non-transmissability of HIV is not surprising. On the other hand, John Moore’s public lack of familiarity with his own side’s literature on this point is astonishing, and suggests that the defense of HIV is as divorced from the scientific literature as ever.

Perhaps it is time that the liberal distribution of federal funds in support of a paradigm on which President Bush has promised $15 billion in US aid, and on which the nations of the world now want to spend $20 billion, but which entirely ignores the conclusions of the corrective literature of the field, be reassessed. Should more taxpayer money go to a theory which is exposed as unsupported in the scientific literature than to the alternatives its critics suggest? Should more money go to what may be an entirely misbegotten analysis of AIDS as infectious, rather than to a new understanding of it as a universal relabeling of conventional threats to health? Should AIDS research and prevention be better funded than cancer or heart disease, without double checking that the fundamental concept of AIDS is correct?

Finally, isn’t the tone and thrust of John Moore’s complaint in itself a reason to smell something fishy about the whole ideology it promotes? What respectable scientist with firm confidence in his theory stoops to labeling his questioners with politically smearing nomenclature such as “denialist”, attacks the credibility of a woman who has lost her child by implying that her position on HIV had anything to do with its death (Ms Maggiore’s child died in 24 hours of symptoms consistent with a conventional systemic overreaction to the double dose of amoxicillin she was given for an infected ear, and the coroner’s belated attempt to connect it with HIV is theoretically spurious), and derides a respected, 150 year old journal, Harper’s, for reporting its discovery of the “out of control corruption of AIDS science” only out of a desire to “sell magazines”?

Harper’s in fact reported that not only is the HIV=AIDS theory of Mr Moore’s field so far scientifically unsupported, but that two of its many drug trials administered by the DAIDS had in the first case callously risked the lives of patients (ending one of them), and in the second case been so poorly conducted as to be scientifically worthless. Yet the results of the second, a Uganda trial of the obviously dangerous drug nevirapine (Viramune), were endorsed by DAIDS officials, reviewed and cleared by scientists funded by the NIH, to justify FDA approval for nevirapine, which will now be exported overseas to dose expectant mothers in Africa to prevent their transmitting the HIV virus to their babies, despite the numerous deaths recorded in the inadequate trial.

As opposed to Moore’s damning the AIDS critics as purveyors of non-peer reviewed pseudoscience, bolstered by uninformed Web discussion, Celia Farber’s clear view in Harper’s of the AIDS scene in both its science and medicine revealed that it is John Moore and his colleagues who indulge in peer rejected pseudoscience and whose motives are suspect, given the clear conflict of interest involved in their sources of funding, which tend heavily towards the companies that market AIDS drugs against HIV. Moore himself is beholden to Bristol-Myers Squibb, for example, the richest source of corporate grants for unrestricted medical research.

But such considerations are petty, in the end, for they apply to most scientists today. The true signal of all that is wrong with HIV and AIDS is the endless effort by those piloting the paradigm to avoid having to land it for inspection. This indication of bad faith is the greatest cause for worry that for twenty one years we have had it all wrong, and misled ourselves and mistreated the patients whom we have mismedicated and so often lost.

Expanding the preventive effort and spending billions more on research without acknowledging that other ways of understanding what has happened may be preferable and should be explored will only risk continuing down the same disastrous cul de sac and leading many more millions into a greater medical holocaust than has been suffered to date.

(show)

The New York Times

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June 4, 2006

Op-Ed Contributor

Deadly Quackery

By JOHN MOORE and NICOLI NATTRASS

H.I.V. causes AIDS. This is not a controversial claim but an established fact, based on more than 20 years of solid science. It is as certain as the descent of humans from apes and the falling of dropped objects to the ground.

So why reiterate the obvious? Because lately, a bizarre theory has gained ground — one that claims that H.I.V. is harmless, and that the antiretroviral drugs that curb the growth of the virus cause rather than treat AIDS. Such talk sounds to most of us like quackery, but the theory has emerged as a genuine menace to public health in the United States and, particularly, in South Africa.

The theory, which we call AIDS denialism, has gained such currency with President Thabo Mbeki of South Africa that his administration is reluctant to expand access to antiretroviral drugs. Despite generous allocations from the country’s Treasury and substantial assistance from foreign donors, only a quarter of those needing antiretrovirals receive them. This response is poor by the standards of middle-income countries, but it is especially troublesome in South Africa, which has more H.I.V.-positive people than any other country.

American AIDS denialists are partly to blame for South Africa’s backsliding AIDS policy. Manto Tshabalala-Msimang, the health minister, has described antiretrovirals as poisons. She is supported in these views by Roberto Giraldo, a New York hospital technologist who says AIDS is caused by deficiencies in the diet, and who served on President Mbeki’s AIDS advisory panel in 2000. The minister promotes nutritional alternatives like lemons, garlic and olive oil to treat H.I.V. infection. Several prominent South Africans have died of AIDS after opting to change their diets instead of taking antiretrovirals.

Another American AIDS denialist, David Rasnick, a regular letter-writer to South African newspapers, absurdly claims that H.I.V. cannot be transmitted between heterosexuals. Mr. Rasnick now works in South Africa for a multinational vitamin company, the Rath Foundation, conducting clinical trials in which AIDS patients are encouraged to take multivitamins instead of antiretrovirals.

In the past, South Africa’s Medicines Control Council acted swiftly to curb such abuses, and the Medical Research Council condemned AIDS denialism. But recent high-level political appointments of administration supporters to both bodies have neutered their influence. In South Africa, AIDS denialism now underpins a lucrative nutritional supplements industry that has the tacit, and sometimes active, support of the Mbeki administration.

By courting the AIDS denialists, President Mbeki has increased their stature in the United States. He lent credibility to Christine Maggiore, a Californian who campaigns against using antiretrovirals to prevent transmission of H.I.V. from mothers to children, when he was photographed meeting her. Two years later, Ms. Maggiore gave birth to an H.I.V.-infected daughter, Eliza Jane, who acquired an AIDS-related infection last year and died at age 3.

Mother-to-child H.I.V. transmission is now rare in the United States, thanks to the widespread use of preventive therapy and the activities of organizations like the National Institutes of Health and the Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric AIDS Foundation. Sadly, this is not so in South Africa, where many children are born infected and then face short, painful lives. The health and lives of American children are also still under threat: a small clique of AIDS denialists is trying to block the provision of antiretrovirals to H.I.V.-infected children in the New York City foster care system.

Until recently, AIDS researchers and activists in the United States tended to regard the denialists with derision, assuming they would fade away. Unfortunately, this has not happened. Harper’s Magazine recently published an article by Celia Farber promoting the denialist view. There is a real risk that a new generation of Americans could be persuaded that H.I.V. either doesn’t exist or is harmless, that safe sex isn’t important and that they don’t need to protect their children from this deadly virus. A resurgence of denialism in the United States would have far reaching effects on the global AIDS pandemic, just as it already has in South Africa.

The AIDS denialists use pseudoscience and non-peer-reviewed Internet postings to bolster their false claims about H.I.V. The real facts about this virus have been uncovered by scientists supported by the National Institutes of Health, the British and South African Medical Research Councils, the Pasteur Institute and many other national research organizations. The public should seek AIDS truth from the latter sources.

It is sad when selling magazines and vitamin supplements is considered more important than promoting public health and scientific truth. The truth is that H.I.V. does exist, that it causes AIDS and that antiretroviral drugs can prevent H.I.V. transmission and death from AIDS. To deny these facts is not just wrong — it’s deadly.

John Moore is a professor of microbiology and immunology at Cornell University. Nicoli Nattrass is the director of the AIDS and Society Research Unit at the University of Cape Town.

50 Responses to “Times publishes scurrilous John Moore Op-Ed piece against “denialists””

  1. Martin Kessler Says:

    In the 7th paragraph of Moore’s article, the subject of Christine Maggiore is mentioned. “Two years later, Ma. Maggiore gave birth to an HIV infected daughter, Eliza Jane, who acquired AIDS-related infection last year and died at age 3.” Is this true? Or half true? I don’t know the facts myself (I haven’t investigated them on the internet through searches).

    It’s interesting that when David Rasnick is mentioned, his academic degree (his name should have been preceeded with Dr. (PhD) wasn’t mentioned, he was called just a “letter writer”.

    Anyway I look forward to truthseeker’s deconstruction to Moore’s diatribe.

    You’re right about what the NY Times should have done – practice Tod Schweigen – death by silence – by ignoring the dissenters (vilified as denialists).

  2. Martin Kessler Says:

    According to David Crowe, Eliza Jane died of an allergic reaction to Amoxycillin (an antibiotic) not from any kind of pneumonia – peumocystis carinii which is a fungus would not respond to an antibiotic – that only works with bacterial pneumonias if they work at all.

  3. DB Says:

    As for Eliza Jane being born “HIV-infected”, that’s really a hell of a stretch. Truthseeker can correct me if I’m wrong, but to my knowledge, EJ was never actually tested for “HIV”.

  4. Martin Kessler Says:

    I just sent a little letter to the New York Times – letters from AIDS dissenters rarely if ever get published. But the letter below should give the editors some pause because Eliza Jane’s death was not AIDS related but was reported as such in Moore’s Op Ed.
    Here’s the letter:

    “Eliza Jane Maggiore died of an allergic reaction to Amoxicillin. Funny, I didn’t know that was on the list of AIDS diseases. Maybe you should check the facts of quacks like John Moore before they are published.”

  5. McKiernan Says:

    The notion that a very unfortunate child’s passing was due to an allergic reaction to amoxicillin has never ever been medically or clinically established. If Mr. David Crowe says
    he knows otherwise, then his words can be described as meritless.

  6. David Crowe Says:

    Martin Kessler is correct that Christine Maggiore’s daughter, Eliza Jane, probably died of an allergic reaction to Amoxicillin (a penicillin based antibiotic). This determination was made by pathologist Dr. Mohammed Al-Bayati, further details at JusticeForEJ.com.

    The fact that Moore would exploit the death of a 3 year old (a fair-minded person would also mention the alternative theory for her death) proves that he is a religious missionary, out to civilize the savages who question the connection between HIV and AIDS.

    But wait, isn’t it scientists who question and religious fanatics who impose dogmas? I suppose the answer is that when science becomes a religion, it adopts the less desirable characteristics of religion but, at the same time, this means it is no longer science.

    There are millions of possible theories about HIV and AIDS, and one of them is that HIV always causes AIDS and AIDS always causes death. To deny the possibility of other theories (even mild versions, such as that HIV only causes AIDS most of the time, and that some people with AIDS might recover) is surely the true denialism, if we want to throw pejorative expressions around.

    Scientists should encourage vigorous discussion. The fact that AIDS scientists have actively worked since the early 1980s to prevent discussion of their HIV=AIDS=Death dogma, proves that they are scientists in name only. If they’re going to call me a denialist, I’m going to call them dogmatists (apologies to Goscinny and Uderzo).

  7. McKiernan Says:

    David,

    Being clinically, medically and scientifically accurate is obviously inconsistent with nary one of your statements.

    As Winston churchill said, ‘You could not have said the opposite of the truth with greater accuracy “.

    You have expanded your meritlessness beyond its elastic limit.

  8. Frank Lusardi Says:

    Please, they’re not religious missionaries, they’re wannabe producers of cinematic extravaganzas! Here’s the latest from the venerable David Ho, observing the fiendishly clever virus: “It’s almost like you are watching a ‘Star Wars’ force shield protecting a station.” Hey, they’re idiots, sure, but they’ve got a certain panache!


    AIDS Stalks Humans as HIV Research Slows to a Crawl
    , Los Angeles
    Times
    , June 4, 2006.

  9. Truthseeker Says:

    “David, Being clinically, medically and scientifically accurate is obviously inconsistent with nary one of your statements. As Winston Churchill said, ‘You could not have said the opposite of the truth with greater accuracy “. You have expanded your meritlessness beyond its elastic limit.”

    Dear McK, please don’t abandon your normal philosophical poise to stoop to mere ad hominem bluster, otherwise we will be forced to conclude that you don’t have a reply to what David wrote.

    We are certainly interested if you have some rival theory for Eliza Jane’s tragic exit from the happy life she and her mother so richly deserved, as we hope you agree, judging from everything we have heard.

    Presumably you have some explanation for how HIV in her case (untested, as I recall) suddenly developed an ability to kill within 24 hours, with all the symptoms of extreme allergic reaction to a double dose of amoxicillin, well known to all competent pediatricians, rather than the relatively torpid ten to twenty years it normally takes to come alive and strike one down?

    Was this a new and unknown variant of HIV, perhaps the killer virus detected in New York, and subsequently forgotten for some unknown reason? Perhaps it has a specific reaction to amoxicillin? Apparently you have a theory which you may share with us.

    By the way, if you like to hear Winston bon mots, perhaps you should know that he also said “Truth is incontrovertible. Panic may resent it; ignorance may deride it; malice may destroy it, but there it is.”

    But then you may feel that, as he also said, “Truth is so precious that she must often be attended by a bodyguard of lies.”

  10. noreen martin Says:

    Great article! I cannot understand why John Moore or any other reporter would not do their homework meaning talking to both side of the issue. There are many AIDS persons, such as myself, who do not take the anti-viral medications and are doing just fine. The mainstream doesn’t even acknowledge that we exist so as not to have to burst a hole in their HIV causes AIDS balloon!

  11. McKiernan Says:

    McK shall try again. The Eliza Jane case is a very important and unfortunate case. For one to subsume that the unfortunate child died as a result of an allergic reaction based on a paper trail review by Dr. Mohammed Al-Bayati, PHD is not supported by the facts.

    Dr. Al-Bayati never treated the child, saw the child, nor had any hands on clnical pathology examination. We do not find on the internet any confirming support for Al-Bayati’s conclusions by Peter Duesberg nor Harvey Bialy nor any other significant professional. That his conclusion of allergic reaction as primary cause is extremely challengeable and not supported by the facts. The child had no swelling of lips, eyes, extremities, no urticaria, rash and no other clinical signs of allergy. Allergy is not possible unless one has had a prior exposure to the allergen. The Maggiore child had never received penicillin, amoxicillin or any prescription medications previously.

    Dr. Al-Bayati’s report has been refuted online by Trent McBride and others. Al-Bayati’s conclusions were invented weeks after the child died. No where in any reports does it indicate that the treating emergency hospital physicians found any allergic reactions signs or symptoms to treat.

    Mr. David Crowe wrote:

    “Martin Kessler is correct that Christine Maggiore’s daughter, Eliza Jane, probably died of an allergic reaction to Amoxicillin (a penicillin based antibiotic).

    McK finds that statement convincingly meritless.

  12. DB Says:

    Nowhere in any reports does it indicate that the treating emergency hospital physicians found any allergic reactions signs or symptoms to treat.

    The emergency hospital physicians found no evidence of pneumonia, which you conveniently ignore. A few months later, the coroner stated EJ died of “AIDS-related pneumonia”…without testing for “HIV”. How does that work?

    It seems the coroner was working on the “guilty by association” supposition that EJ must be “HIV-positive” because Christine Maggiore had tested positive sometime in her life. Staring him in the face is the fact that Maggiore’s other child, Charlie, has repeatedly tested negative, and so has her husband, Robin.

  13. noreen martin Says:

    Thank goodness that Christine did not have Eliza Jane HIV tested. From what I know about retrovivuses, they are passed not by sex, but from the mother to the child. In this case, the child may have shown HIV+. The mainstream would have had a field day with this.

    I would suspect that the antibotic played a part in this because many thousands die each year from prescribed and over-the-counter medications while the statistics are quietly swept under the carpet.

    Until the HIV issue gets straightened out, meaning that if it equovically causes AIDS then there should be undeniable proof, then these tests are meaningless. Hiv just happens to be one of thousands of retro-viruses which has an antibody test for it. I have green eyes, if a test was developed for green eyes then I would always come up positive so it is for anyone who has been exposed to HIV. These tests are useless and should not given any importance.

  14. Celia Farber Says:

    McKiernan:

    If in your opinion Trent McBride has “refuted” the Al Bayati report, does that in your estimate render the “AIDS” diagnosis by the coroner correct?

    If the child’s immune system was intact by serologic measures, and if she did not “have” HIV, then do you still think the died of AIDS?

    I have interviewed a cell biologist recently who cast new and vital light on all of this. All I can say right now is, wait. There’s alot you don’t know.

    “The spirit of liberty is the spirit that is never too sure that it is right.”

    (Learned Hand)

  15. Claus Says:

    Truthseeker I beg to differ: something as fancy as ‘deconstruction’ is not suitable at all for Moore’s article. I propose instead we review it as an average school boy’s paper.

    The standard formula I was taught in my school days goes something like this: Introduce, present one side accurately and objectively, present the other side accurately and objectively, examine/discuss, conclude.

    We see that Moore’s presentation of HIV?AIDS begins in the second of the two introductory paragraphs:

    “a bizarre theory has gained ground — one that claims that H.I.V. is harmless, and that the antiretroviral drugs that curb the growth of the virus cause rather than treat AIDS”

    But just a few lines later Moore informs us that ‘we call this theory “AIDS denialism”’.

    I’m not sure who ‘we’ are, but I’m absolutely positive there’s nothing in Moore’s definition of the theory in question that includes denying the reality of AIDS, or even HIV. In fact ‘AIDS denialism’ is not a theory at all; it is a deliberately distorting smear word used ABOUT anybody who QUESTIONS the theory HIV=AIDS. Moore has thus FLUNKED the accurate and objective presentation of HIV?AIDS right off the bat.

    Moore refrains from any further presentation of either side of the basic HIV?AIDS issue. He must therefore think that the scientific consensus argument in the first paragraph is sufficient presentation of the HIV=AIDS side:

    “H.I.V. causes AIDS. This is not a controversial claim but an established fact, based on more than 20 years of solid science.”

    But of course this is not presentation, just pure postulation, worthless if not backed up by argument. Moore has thus FLUNKED the accurate objective presentation of HIV=AIDS as well (Or maybe he just means to say the HIV=AIDS side HAS no arguments?)

    Moore then jumps to an examination of the lumped together claims that antiretroviral drugs are toxic, and that AIDS can be caused by deficiencies in the diet. There is no presentation of the arguments for these claims either, and so Moore FLUNKS on presentation once more.
    But Moore does apparently have a sense of fairness, because he doesn’t introduce the pro-antiretroviral side either. Instead he settles the entire discussion to his own satisfaction with this observation:

    “Several prominent South Africans have died of AIDS after opting to change their diets instead of taking antiretrovirals”

    This is not only an incredibly naive form of argument coming from a supposedly educated person, Moore has also FLUNKED the examine/discuss part BIG time.

    But Moore himself apparently feels he’s on a roll. He immediately moves on to (Dr.?) Rasnick’s ‘absurd claim that ‘HIV cannot be transmitted between heterosexuals’. Again there is no further presentation or explanation of Rasnick’s point, so of course it will appear absurd.
    It is well known that as soon as hetero/homosexuals and Africans are mentioned, any self-respecting AIDS missionary immediately thinks about identity defining sexual acts, but the rest of us are left with the impression that Rasnick wants to claim that heterosexuals exchanging blood and buggering each other all day long cannot transmit HIV, whereas homosexuals do.
    We suppos Rasnick’s position is that, in so far as HIV can be transmitted at all, heterosexual intercourse is not an efficient way – also according to mainstream research.

    Be that as it may, Moore dismisses Rasnick’s scientifically based claims about heterosexual HIV transmission by informing us that he is a vitamin
    salesman(?!). . . . Need we say Mr. Moore FLUNKED AGAIN in regards to both presentation and discussion!

    The next point concerning Christine Maggiore has been covered already in earlier mails, so we’ll skip that, since it’s simply more of the same.

    By the end of the article, Moore is so impressed with his own authority that he, contrary to all common practice, admonishes the reader to NOT go and look up the arguments that he himself didn’t bother to provide!!!

    “The AIDS denialists use pseudoscience and non-peer-reviewed Internet postings to bolster their false claims about H.I.V. The real facts about this virus have been uncovered by scientists supported by the National Institutes of Health, the British and South African Medical Research Councils, the Pasteur Institute and many other national research organizations The public should seek AIDS truth from the latter sources.” (My italics)

    Moore finally turns his white robe of ‘respectable science’ to show plainly the black one of dogma. Translated into the language properly reserved for this literary genre, Moore’s message is this:

    “Thou shalt not tempt the Lord thy jealous Doctor by familiarizing thyself with the AIDS denialist’s pseudoscientific, non-peer-reviewed, false claims about HIV (lest thou shouldst find them not to be pseudoscientific, non-peer-reviewed or false at all), for I am your Doctor, the Word and the Truth unto all eternity.”

    With regard to understanding the rules governing civil and rational scientific debate Moore has FLUNKED beyond the point of possible return.

  16. Gene Semon Says:

    Dear McK:

    You seem unaware that the coroner’s belated and spurious connection to HIV was based on p24, a non-specific stress protein discarded years ago by mainstream AIDS researchers as a measure of “HIV viremia”. For details see Harvey Bialy’s Scientific Life and Times of Peter Duesberg. McK, you really should read this book as a qualification for further postings on this board.

    BTW, Dr. Mohammed Al-Bayati, PHD is a court-qualified expert witness, specializing in differential diagnosis and testifying on the basis of “paper trails”. Are you actually saying, McK, that a consulting physician cannot perform such a review on the basis of direct exams by others? Can you see that his expertise includes the ability to present evidence that can withstand live cross examination?

    The child had no swelling of lips, eyes, extremities, no urticaria, rash and no other clinical signs of allergy. Allergy is not possible unless one has had a prior exposure to the allergen.

    Are you saying this or repeating Trent Mcbride? It sounds fantastic since there are other mechanisms of drug toxicity besides repeated allergenic exposure. The shock-reaction need not show these synptoms and allergy itself means different things to different people. I strongly doubt that a toxicologist of Dr. Al-Bayati’s stature would make the elementary error of misusing the term.

    So far, you’ve not succeeded in debunking Dr Al Bayati’s report, and it stands as “clinically, medically and scientifically accurate”. Nor have you come near to demonstrating that Eliza Jane’s tragic death had anything to do with “AIDS”.

  17. Felix Says:

    I’m kind of thrilled to see articles like these being written. That Moore said we “denialists” have “gained ground” makes me feel we are actually having some effect.

  18. HankBarnes Says:

    John Moore is low-ranking hatchet man from AIDS inc. I’ve blogged about him before.

    Quoting Moore:

    …a bizarre theory has gained ground — one that claims that H.I.V. is harmless, and that the antiretroviral drugs that curb the growth of the virus cause rather than treat AIDS”

    You can tell someone is intellectually dishonest, when they can’t even faithfully describe the opposition’s claim. He gets Claim 1 reasonably close (HIV is harmless), but simply butchers Claim 2.

    Two quick scientific papers to substantiate the claims (and rephrase Moore’s claim 2):

    1. HIV is harmless

    According to the longest epidemiological study of heterosexual transmission of HIV (6 years, 175 discordant couples having sex), nobody contracted HIV. See Padian Paper.. See also, the numerous HIV+ folks who are healthy. See also the animals injected with HIV, who remain healthy.

    2. The risks of antiviral drugs outweigh the benefits.

    Well, the Reisler Paper in JAIDS, found that more AIDS patients suffered from grade 4 events (severe or life-threatening) from the anti-virals, than from the underlying disease. (Reisler, JAIDS 34(4):379-386, December 1, 2003.)

    So, there’s some evidence to support these 2 claims. And, that’s just the tip of the ice-berg.

    Hank

  19. Truthseeker Says:

    “1. HIV is harmless:
    According to the longest epidemiological study of heterosexual transmission of HIV (6 years, 175 discordant couples having sex), nobody contract HIV. See Padian Paper.. See also, the numerous HIV+ folks who are healthy. See also the animals injected with HIV, who remain healthy.

    Thanks for quoting the Padian reference Hank, which is the famous clincher among several mainstream studies all saying the same thing now, which is that the chief embarrassment to the pilots of the unstable and creaking HIV paradigm is that the darn microbe has been proven entirely uninfectious heterosexually (and pretty much uninfectious homosexually, judging from the recent report that among 44,000 prisoners only 87 contracted positivity after screwing each other, or somesuch finding, which anyone familiar with this issue should by now be too weary of nonsense to examine more closely, as we are).

    That scotches the supposed global pandemic, which now has to be interpreted in some other way, unless you say that HIV drugs and tattoos and unhygienic medical injections have suddenly become widespread in the less developed countries of the world, which Gisselquist seems to be trying to claim.

    Of course, the simplest explanation is that a bunch of irresponsible and unthinking safari helmeted testers have been let loose on the world and found the proportion of the world population that harbors an innocent retrovirus passed on in birth from their mothers. But the problem remains, what of the studies that supposedly show that this or that preventive – condoms, say – has slowed or reversed the supposed spread of this virus? How is whatever positivity represents spreading faster or slower at any point? Or are the studies simply worthless?

    Meanwhile, lack of transfer of HIV positive status, which one would expect if the tests simply reflect the presence of antibodies, and virtually no virus, is not the same thing as proof that the virus is harmless, is it? It could be the fiercest little buggy bug bug in the world and be non-infectious, surely. Of course, it would have to find some other reservoir than dead humans or go out of existence.

  20. McKiernan Says:

    Gene Semon:

    McK does have a copy of “Oncogenes, Aneuploidy and AIDS”, the proper name of Harvey Bialy’s book. So your criteria for my commenting has been met. Now to your question:

    “Are you actually saying, McK, that a consulting physician cannot perform such a review on the basis of direct exams by others ?”

    No, McK has never said nor implied that thesis. However, you do know, of course, that, Dr. Mohammed Al-Bayati, PHD, is not a consulting physician. He does not hold a medical license to practice or make diagnoses. As the author of his book, “Get All The Facts: HIV does not cause AIDS”, his neutrality as an independent legal expert is limited to one sided legal testimonies under payment to his consulting firm. Please correct me if I am wrong.

    Celia:

    Thank you, those are very good questions for which I have no ready answers. The LA Coroners report is based on a finding of death by – pneumocystis carinii pneumonia due to a consequence of acquired immunodeficiency syndrome which Dr. Bayati has not refuted nor has any significant hiv activist come to support his contention of an allergic anaphylactic shock defense, to my knowledge. If accuracy is the goal, the issue of histological findings cannot be ignored. “Pneumocystis carinii was found in Eliza Jane’s lungs by Gomori methenamine silver staining in association with pink foamy casts in the alveoli. The lungs were also edematous. “ So even if they rule out hiv, the PCP findings don’t just disappear nor can they be ignored.

    Meanwhile, a sidebar:

    The Padian study will likely go down in history as insignificant. It demonstrated non-seroconversion in 175 discordant heterosexual, monogamous couples. The study started out with infected bi-sexual men and their female partners. They couldn’t find enough so they “expanded recruitment criteria” regardless of risk group or gender. In USA it is predominantly a homosexual men disease. Then, the Padian papers are published and lo and behold, of the 884 people (442 pairs) only 350 (175 pairs) were left to put on the results page 545. This represents 39.5 % of the study group. And the study found: “Because of deaths as well as the break-up of couples, attrition was severe..”

    Question: So why weren’t gay men or IV drug abusers in the study ?

    “The professional has no right to other than a continuous student”. GV Black

  21. Martin Kessler Says:

    Wouldn’t just about anyone test positive for Pneuocystis Carinii if that’s what you’re looking for? As I understand it PC is ubiquitous and doesn’t become deadly unless cell tissue in the lungs is acutally dead. Since Pneumocystis Carinii is a fungus, it is a recycling agent that eats dead things – cells that no longer are respirating – cells in the lungs would have to have been killed by something in Eliza Jane for Pneuocystis Carinii to take hold – I wonder how long that normally takes? Anyway the idea that Eliza Jane had PCP is not very convincing.

  22. Gene Semon Says:

    McK,

    Thanks for the rational response.

    Dr Al-Bayati also claims credential in pathology so this qualifies him as a consulting PHYSICIAN. I didn’t say licensed MD. The point here is that a live debate in court would settle the matter. The coroner’s testimony is, to say the least, shaky.

    See Root-Bernstein for physiology of PCP without HIV, therefore casting doubt on your conclusion. It is up to your side to prove that HIV causes PCP, BTW a fungal infection in its full-blown state. Is that what “pink foamy casts” and “edematous” indicate?

  23. Truthseeker Says:

    The Padian study will likely go down in history as insignificant. It demonstrated non-seroconversion in 175 discordant heterosexual, monogamous couples.

    McK, we understood you to be a careful reader of the information on this blog, which of course justifies its existence in itself, and since we posted earlier on the other studies with the same finding, that the infectiousness of HIV is ineffectual, and observed the struggles of the valiant Gisselquist to reconcile this with the purported gobal pandemic, we are surprised at your remark. We can only hope that your lively mind has not been invaded by the AIDS meme to the extent that you are coasting along making reflex objections to whatever doesn’t fit with the model.

    Certainly we have to say that your insistence that Eliza Jane was suddenly killed after three years of no discernible symptoms of immune deficiency in a final attack by your favorite virus which caused new symptoms of systemic shock which ended her life in 24 hours, instead of its normally leisurely style of up to the current estimate of twenty four years to take effect, is something you have to explain a little better than simply questioning Al-Bayati’s credentials, especially on the grounds that he has written a book which takes the public position that HIV is a dead parrot, causally speaking.

    The questioning of credentials is the last resort of the empty handed, it seems to us. In this case, his book suggests that Al-Bayati is more qualified than the usual reviewer, since he has taken a very exposed public position on HIV?AIDS which demands that he be very well informed on the topic, since he will encounter many antagonists infected with the HIV?AIDS meme who will reflexively question his credentials and his conclusions.

    The issue isn’t the credentials of the observer but his/her reasoning and evidence. Once again, if you have anything other than the ubiquitous presence of PCP to justify your idea that a variant of an already genetically challenged HIV was involved in this death that acted 190 times faster than the average, and not amoxicillin, well known to have that kind of effect in a small number of cases, please tell us.

    Of course, since you are a fan of Churchill’s perhaps you want to quote back at us another saying of his:

    “The idea that nothing is true except what we comprehend is silly.”

  24. McKiernan Says:

    Padian comment was a sidebar, Truthseeker. Barnes drags it out ad nauseum as though it is the last word on HIV seroconversion.

    In the Maggiore child situation, the smoking gun is the histopathologic evidence of pneumocystis carinii pneumonia.

    “It’s too coincidental to be a coincidence.” Yogi Berra

  25. DB Says:

    Padian comment was a sidebar, Truthseeker. Barnes drags it out ad nauseum as though it is the last word on HIV seroconversion.

    It should be the last word on HIV seroconversion. Do you have a study handy that’s similar in scope that shows HIV to be so readily transmissable that might help to explain why Africa (unlike the U.S.) is so decimated by AIDS?

  26. HankBarnes Says:

    McKiernan,

    Padian comment was a sidebar, Truthseeker. Barnes drags it out ad nauseum as though it is the last word on HIV seroconversion.

    I guess you missed the part where Padia noted that:

    To our knowledge, our study is the largest and longest study of heterosexual transmission of HIV in the United States.

    Hank Barnes

  27. Gene Semon Says:

    In the Maggiore child situation, the smoking gun is the histopathologic evidence of pneumocystis carinii pneumonia.

    I love the certainty in that statement, McK, as if now the matter is settled because you pronounce it so. Here’s another one of your pronouncements:

    Dean, Actually, I agree with the report and I suspect the LA coroners report is faulty. The LA Times article was awful. Now if Dr. Henry Lee—says Dr. Al-Bayati is 100% correct that would settle it in my limited mind. But you are correct, Al-Bayati backs up every claim with skillful medical references.
    We have seen medical expert witnesses in criminal trials on either side contradict each other with
    equal and opposite expert opinion. That isn’t surprising especially in LA County. So one can have doubts without carrying the burden of being an ad hominem detractor.

    This indeed is a sad case. 11/20/05 McK at Deans World

    Here’s what Robin Scoville had to say (at reason.com blog):

    All I can say at this time about Eliza Jane’s diagnosis of PCP is that it’s undergoing evaluation and appears inconsistent with what we her parents, her three pediatricians, the ER doctors, the X-rays taken, and the initial examination of my daughter’s lungs in an autopsy would support. To say more before an independent evaluation is completed, would be speculative and premature.

    Can’t you see that this is now a highly politicized situation, not conducive to trusting those who continue their scurrilous attacks on Christine and Robin?

  28. McKiernan Says:

    What’s your point Gene ?

    The ‘cut and paste’ was accurate. In fairness, you could have included Dean’s comment directly after mine:

    ” Good on yer, McKiernan. Maybe one day we’ll have a better understanding of all these issues, and it won’t have to be so hostile.”

    I’ve never commented on Reason.com.

  29. Celia Farber Says:

    McKiernan,

    I appreciate your civility. Why is histopathological evidence of P. Cariini, in YOUR estimate, a smoking gun?

    EJ died of cardiac arrest. How did the smoking gun you cite kill her?

  30. McKiernan Says:

    Well, glub.

    McK, the non-expert, suggests that the LA coroners’s office may not have a case lacking histopathologic evidence of PCP. One doesn’t know. If PCP is the accurate diagnosis of cause of death, it will in fact so demonstrate in the histopathology ? No ?

    I’ve never said the LA coroner was immutably accurate but that the allergic reaction anaphylactic shock theory of Al-Bayati seems be second or third on a list of causes. Further, After the amoxicillin theory was proposed, the hiv activists side seemed to indicate, well, just maybe it was the binders or the food dyes or whatever is in the gelatin capsules or the amoxicillin liquid that can cause an adverse reaction. Adverse reaction is adverse reaction and sometimes its idiopathic.

    To be truthful as in truthful, the issue isn’t politics, or scurillous attacks or flame wars. A child tragically passed away, suddenly. Nor is the issue speculation.

    There are so many un-answered questions. Yes, you’re correct, the child had cardiac arrest. But the child also had pulmonary edema. Which came first ?

    My view is that the answer isn’t in some obscure aging peer-reviewed study supporting one’s thesis. Nor is it in an ideological based propaganda war where opposing sides drawn their lines in the sand.

    The real answers re: Eliza Jane, we may never know, just that it doesn’t hurt to look for appropriate answers.

    Don’t we have that obligation ? And therefore isn’t it appropriate that some may get on the internet and challenge others for their statements ?

  31. Gene Semon Says:

    McK,

    My point is to elicit the response you just gave. If you want to believe that politics, meaning the politics of medicine, isn’t involved, fine.

    Now your saying pulmonary edema and cardiac arrest need to be explained. Good. I see this as progress, perhaps not PCP after all.

    Another question. How exact a science is differential diagnosis as practiced by anyone?

    I read the record as coroner sloppy, Al-Bayati more precise. I see scurrilous attacks on the blogs I mentioned and didn’t mean to imply that you were involved at reason.com.

  32. Mark Biernbaum Says:

    I do not think that we know what EJ died from. I am suspicious of both the Coroner’s report and Al-Bayati’s. And frankly, if EJ did die from an “AIDS”-related condition, this is irrelevant, as in this country, we have (at least for now), the right to refuse medical treatment. Ms. Maggiore has not broken any existing laws that I am aware of by refusing to take chemotherapies now proven to kill just as effectively as AIDS (see Reisler et. al., Grade 4 Events are as Important as AIDS Events in the Era of HAART, J Acqui Immune Defic Syndr, 34(4), p. 379-386).

    What we do know is that Moore’s contention that EJ was HIV+ has not been proven by the Coroner. A p24 serum assay is not accepted as “proof” of HIV+ serostatus by any country in the world — nor is Viral Load for that matter, and the Coroner has not announced the existence of an antibody test. Without an antibody test, at least in this country, serostatus cannot be determined. And if there were a positive antibody test, wouldn’t that have been the first thing to “leak” to the L.A. Times?

    What this means is that Moore lied (not unusual for Moore), unless he has evidence that both the Coroner and Al-Bayati don’t have. Moore loves attacking anyone who contradicts him or threatens his precious $500,000 “Non-Targeted” Grant from GSK.

    The New York Times should be ashamed. But this is all of course coming from the same “venerable” newspaper whose star reported had the world convinced that Iraq had weopans of mass destruction — when they did not. I see a pattern here. The New York Times seems to be having hallucinations of evidence that does not exist. Much of this story, if not all of it, is about the sinking ship called the New York Times.

  33. Rebecca Says:

    Mark, you hit the nail on the head re: refusal of treatment. Last I checked we do live in a country in which only the parents – not the state nor “concerned citizens” (or merely people with an agenda) – have the right to decide on proper medical treatment for themselves and their children.

    I must respectfully disagree with McKiernan – not only do we have no “obligation” to concern ourselves with the cause of Eliza Jane’s death, but in fact we should respect her parents enough, and respect the civil liberties that are in place in this country enough, to butt out and let them grieve in peace.

    Not only does the state NOT have the right to intervene in a parent’s choices regarding their or their children’s health care, but we don’t get a right to vote on them either.

    Also… This has been said before, but it sure strikes me as fishy that prior to Eliza Jane’s death, it was a popular (I’m NOT claiming ubiquitous) view among “anti-denialists” to claim Christine wasn’t really HIV-positive. Funny how that changed so fast.

  34. DB Says:

    This has been said before, but it sure strikes me as fishy that prior to Eliza Jane’s death, it was a popular (I’m NOT claiming ubiquitous) view among “anti-denialists” to claim Christine wasn’t really HIV-positive.

    They had no trouble whatsoever in this complete flip-flop concerning Christine’s “status”. When it suited them, Christine was “negative”, now it suits them for Christine to be “positive”.

  35. Celia Farber Says:

    Does anybody know if there is a precedent for a PCP death that was not preceded by symptoms that could be seen in the living person, even by three doctors? No audible lung damage, no gasping, shortness of breath, etc. And again I ask how a person dies acutely, from PCP, of cardiac arrest?

    One is made to feel ashamed to be confused by these things, but I am deeply confused, having studied AIDS for 20 years. It has slipped the bounds of any defining parameters it once had.

    I would agree that the parents should be permitted to grieve in peace, and that this attack on them is an abomination–an extreme low point in American culture–but the fact is the vultures are on them, so we are all forced to either surrender to the vultures, or ask our own questions.

    I agree utterly with what both Mark and Rebecca said. Let us remember that these parents followed medical dvice precisely, at every turn.

    This is so mad it defies belief. Many people should be ashamed of themselves.

  36. Mark Biernbaum Says:

    I hate to be a pessimist, but I think that we are fighting a losing battle — perhaps that’s just how it feels to me. First, Bill, Melinda and Bono on Time, then Bill Clinton and CNN, then Frontline, and now this blast from the Times. The only way that this tidal wave could possibly be turned around is through organization and action, and I just don’t see that coming from the dissidents. We like to brag that 2300 people have signed a petition questioning HIV=AIDS, yet, those are just names on a page. To be truly effective, those names need to act in a concerted way. They need to be organized, to be given an agenda and to go openly into the public forum with protests, with evidence, with energy. This would require real leadership and a real vision. It would require media attention, and people who know how to get it. It would require the mobilization of a grass-roots movement on a large scale. As much as I respect so many of the people involved in the dissident cause, we are far, far, far away from making that cause an actual “movement,” and until that happens, we are words on a page, not much more. Perhaps history will prove us correct, but that is little consolation in the here and now. And before I am attacked for being such a pessimist about this, let me defend myself and say that I have tried to make such things happen — in a variety of forums. And maybe I’m not the best person to step up and attempt this — so be it. Who is then? Where are we? These are rhetorical questions posed to people I admire — not taunts or challenges. It’s just that for me, I am not satisfied with the words on a page approach to this, and yet, that is all that there is.

  37. McKiernan Says:

    McK’s knowledge, not merely understanding is that Ms. Maggiore not only did not rule out internet discussion but has positively endorsed it at Deans World, for one. And Celia can confirm that, as she has so done on this blog site previously. So respectfully, Rebecca, your concerns have previously been addressed. But you are correct, McK isn’t obliged to the cause of EJ’s death. But can he or others not have an interest in the biology/science behind it ? And can those issues be addressed on the internet in blogs such as this ?

    If not where ? And can he not sense, a professional obligation to seek out truth wherever it so leads ?

    Or perhaps, we ought merely be passive readers of the ‘nail on the head’ angst, political moanings and groanings about how the world has screwed Mark and all his pals with all their doom and gloom whilst we await the next staking of the 2008 US presidential winner vampire or will it be a vampira ?

    Back to Celia:

    Point one:

    “Autopsy Report, page one”, ( first subject matter) , “Anatomical Summary”, (first sentence) :

    ” 3 and ½ year old girl had a cough and runny nose for three weeks, developed otitis media, T =101.1, received amoxicillin for two days, became irritable and lethargic, found pulseless at home. Rushed to the emergency room, found to have pneumonia, WBC 14,500, Hct 21, MCV etc, etc…”

    Point two:

    On the ABC program, one attending physician announced that he would have taken an entirely different approach were he aware of the hiv status in the family. Secondly, an ABC commentator announced, they had their own outside expert who confirmed the LA coroners report.

    Point three:

    Read the LA coroners report, if you haven’t done so before you choose to comment, please ?.

  38. Mark Biernbaum Says:

    McK — your characterization of me above is exactly why I stopped posted about the science and the politics in the first place — I’m guessing that Rebecca might say something similar. Are you trying to discourage me from making any public comment whatsoever? Or, do you want to hand me a script of how I should feel and respond to these things, because you seem so to dislike my current responses? At the very least, be respectful and tell me. And put your answer in the first person, why don’t you. It’s as if you and your public comments on this represent two separate people — like “The Donald.” Give me a break, please. What is the psychology behind that exactly? But please do tell me — Does “McK” wish “Mark Biernbaum” (note full name, identifiable, putting it on the line) to stop blogging? If so, have the decency to say it. Otherwise, leave me alone. What exactly have I ever done to you? And this is not AME — there is no required reading list that I am aware of here, McK. But please — do tell me what it is about me that has your anonymous third-person panties in such a delicate and uncomfortable wad. I’m really very curious.

  39. Mark Biernbaum Says:

    Here, I think, is a very interesting question:

    Why does McK feel it necessary to attack Dr. Rebecca Culshaw, who has over 10 years experience ACTUALLY DOING HIV RESEARCH, and Celia Farber, who has over 20 years experience ACTUALLY PUBLISHING ON HIV/AIDS? The attack on me is really nothing when you compare it to the sheer audacity of the attacks on Dr. Culshaw and Ms. Farber.

    So enlighten us all, McK. Obviously, we are mere morons worshipping at the feet of your incredible intellectual and personal authority on this issue. Please enlighten us. Tell us what we should think. We are so very sorry to have offended you. How can we make it better? How can we repair this? We are all waiting nervously for your God-like, omnipotent presence to manifest and educate us. It’s clear from your earlier remarks that you know what killed EJ, so please, please, do come back and tell us all why we are such bad HIV/AIDS dissidents. How can we be more like you, McK?

  40. No Name Says:

    I frankly don’t see the point in debating the likes of “McK” whose mind seems long ago to have fossilized and is simply here to insult people. If Rebecca, Celia and others have the energy, go for it, but please don’t waste too much of your energies as there are far more important things for you to be doing.

    As for the law in the US, I am a Canadian so I have no clear idea what it is, but please remember that Kathleen Tyson was forced by a court to administer AZT to her infant son. I can only begin to imagine how painful that was for her. It sounds to me like a form of torture administered by the court. In Canada Sophie Brossard was a mother who was taken to court, lost her children and ended up having to see her parents administer AZT to them. You can read these histories by searching virusmyth.com for Tyson and healtoronto.com for Brossard. Parents’ rights are not universally protected and the case of EJ should remind us that there is much more work to be done to protect parents in their choices — this includes ARVs and breastfeeding.

    My understanding of the coroner’s report was that it did indeed indicate that an “HIV test” had been done on EJ, but did not give the results and the family’s lawyers are still trying to obtain these. Of course “HIV tests” done after death are well known for “false positives.” One thing that seems clear about EJ’s case is that she did not have or die of pneumonia, PCP or otherwise.

    Mark, hang in there. Remember you are new to this and there is much to learn, including histories which are not always encouraging. The creation of an effective movement will depend in part on organizing and activating people living with an “HIV” diagnosis, such as you and I, so in this sense connecting with Alive and Well or HEAL groups could be more important than any online forum. I think Hodgkinson’s report on the activists in India who cut up the red ribbon is encouraging, but we need to see things like this happen in North America as well. If you can figure out the equivalent action to Rosa Parks’s which set off the Civil Rights movement, the more power to you, but don’t expect this can be done in the medium of text on the net.

  41. truthseeker Says:

    With respect to McK and others who think that the cause of death of Eliza Jane is an open question that we can sensibly debate, it seems to us that it is just a smaller (though very painful) version of the entire spurious debate over HIV as the cause of immune deficiency.

    Why is it so difficult for some people to accept that? Surely, because they are in love with the idea of HIV causing evil. What can else can explain that intelligent and civil posters of comments here pushing so hard against the obvious? We say obvious, hoping not to be offensive, because it seems to us that the cause of Eliza Jane’s death has been plain from the start, as we posted when it happened. Plain to anyone who doesn’t believe in HIV as the cause of the immune deficiency of AIDS, and now plain even to those who still do, since the story since then has added no significant evidence for any other conclusion.

    EJ died of amoxicillin. Celia Farber has written an excellent summary of the affair showing this to be true, we hope that you will agree, and it will appear tomorrow in Los Angeles CityBeat.

  42. Gene Semon Says:

    Interesting posts, and, of course, another incredible piece from Celia announced today.

    As far as McK, I think we should honor his rational side. His counter-arguments should be answered and are worth the energy. He is simply reversing our methodological challenge to the aidschurch. All this is grist for the mill of our day in court, (at least the court of world opinion).

    McK, lets review:

    1. a)The list of amoxicillin adverse reactions includes eosinophilia, thrombocytopenia and fungal superinfections. This last could be a full-blown PC reaction, possibly “pneumonia-like” and explain “Pneumocystis carinii was found in Eliza Jane’s lungs by Gomori methenamine silver staining in association with pink foamy casts in the alveoli.” Presumably, you are also aware of Peter Duesberg’s comments at Dean Esmay on the ubiquity of PC’s dormant form.

    b)No, I haven’t read the coroner’s report. You tell us if the coroner performed an adequate differential diagnosis to exclude all documented and even plausible undocumented reactions to amoxicillin.

    c)Unless you can provide compelling evidence to the contrary, given the politics of the aidschurch, I will continue to believe that the coroner reasoned backwards from an assumed conclusion.

    2. You have dodged the point on p24; it is a non-specific stress protein. If you or Trent McBride or any other “anti-denialist” want to debate this, it would be my pleasure.

    3. Repeating myself, I stand by “So far, you’ve not succeeded in debunking Dr Al Bayati’s report, and it stands as ‘clinically, medically and scientifically accurate’. Nor have you come near to demonstrating that Eliza Jane’s tragic death had anything to do with ‘AIDS'”.

  43. McKiernan Says:

    Thank you Gene. I am a non-expert, just a person interested in finding where the science will lead. And I reserve the right to be wrong. To answer your questions:

    1 a) “PCP is the most common latent pathogen in all of us…”. (Harvey Bialy). But does it mean its never pathogenic ? Example: Acute necrotizing ulcerative gingivitis (trench mouth) is caused by a proliferation of normally non-pathogenic, ubiquitious oral flora but only in certain individuals under stress mostly males (in the military). So millions upon millions of people do not and will never get trench mouth, but it exists as a reality. As far as the other stuff on superinfection etc, you’ll have to ask an expert but its plausable. Antibiotics can sure mess up the intestines.

    b) “I don’t know”.

    c) Dr.Al-Bayati faces the same charge.

    2. Here’s my take on p24, quoting information from an education course last year:

    “A diagnosis of HIV infection is made when a patient’s positive HIV-antibody screening test (eliza or rapid HIV test) is confirmed by a western blot or fluorescent antibody assay. HIV infection can also be diagnosed by an HIV p24 antigen test, HIV nucleic acid test, or HIV culture, but these are used less frequently. “ The point is, current medical protocol accepts p24 indicators in diagnostic evaluation.

    3. If there is a distinction between AIDS and hiv related PCP pneumonia, then I suspect that PC pneumonia was not an irrational finding. Its accuracy will of course be debated and argued based on what and how much new data will be made public. Some other bloggers have sent questions to Dr. Al-Bayati for which he had no answers and simply stated he is willing to testify in court.

    Would you agree that some kind of expert consensus would be needed to change public opinion on the LA pathologists report ?

  44. Felix Says:

    This quote by Dr. Andrew Maniotis, cell biologist and toxicologist at the University of Illinois, in Ms. Farber’s latest article should be emphasized:

    “They did a lymphocyte count on Eliza Jane when she was admitted to the hospital. Forget everything else. Her absolute lymphocyte count was 10,800 cells per milliliter. She was not immune suppressed. That’s all you’ve got to know. She could not have died from PCP and had 10,800 lymphocytes in her bloodstream at the time of death. No way. It just doesn’t happen. Nor could she have encephalitis. End of story, it’s that simple.”

  45. Gene Semon Says:

    McK,

    Again, thanks for your reasoned answer.

    1. a) I agree with your general point. The PC superinfection, if there was one, would be more likely amoxicillin-related than AIDS-related, hence the coroner jumped to his conclusion.

    b) I appreciate your honesty.

    c) But Dr Al-Bayati demonstrates in his report, which I’ve read, a systematic exclusion of possibilities based on pathological findings, i.e. differential diagnosis. According to b), you don’t see that. So I have to wonder how you draw your conclusion re equivalency. How does his “bias”, HIV has never been shown to cause AIDS, effect his analysis?

    2. I have no doubt that p24 is still lingering in current medical protocols. As far as current mainstream HIV research, it has been discarded. There were presentations at the world AIDS conferences in the early 90’s against the use of this surrogate marker.

    But you’ve evaded the substantive point. HIV research documents the complex transcription of retroviral proviruses, meaning they don’t exactly “replicate”. Since retroviral genes have been in primates for millions of years, they are pleiotropic. Oxidant-stress induced production of HIV-associated proteins is equivalent to the “heat-shock” or SOS response. In other words, we can see from mainstream how they’ve been misinterpreting effect as cause. Retroviral LTRs are strong CELLULAR transcription promoters, which explain the “orthodox” results in culture.

    3. “If there is a distinction between AIDS and hiv related PCP pneumonia…” This appears to me as one of those bizarre logics of HIV/AIDS science. McK, I have to admit you stumped me here.

    As for your last question, see Celia’s report. Maniotis seems like a real heavyweight, but will he escape the venomous attacks? Note especially that even the comments on lymphocyte counts will probably be an ineffective shield. I hope I’m wrong.

    Cheers

  46. McKiernan Says:

    Felix,

    1. What did you think of this statement in Ms. Farber’s latest article as reported here on NAR ?

    ““Vituperative condescension is the one note struck by those who believe it was AIDS, bloggers being the most wild-eyed. “Bad mothering,” cant mixed with AIDS “denial” rage, against a backdrop of hatred against the entirety of Alternative Medicine Culture, depicted as “crackpots,” by the Libertarian leaning Internet rationlists. (Dean: This additon not critical. Don’t get mad.)”

    2. Did you note whom Ms Farber is using as one of her editorial expert hiv consultants ?

  47. Truthseeker Says:

    McK, are you suggesting that this description is incorrect? If so, in what respect? Or are you confused by the name Dean, which is the editor, not Dean Esmay?

  48. john Says:

    Amoxicilline is a betalactamine, but also a phenol. And phenol is highly corrosive and poisonous :

    http://www.atsdr.cdc.gov/mhmi/mmg115.html

    Acute Exposure
    As a corrosive substance, phenol denatures proteins and generally acts as a protoplasmic poison. Phenol may also cause peripheral nerve damage (i.e., demyelination of axons). Systemic poisoning can occur after inhalation, skin contact, eye contact, or ingestion. Typically, transient CNS excitation occurs, then profound CNS depression ensues rapidly. Damage to the nervous system is the primary cause of death from phenol poisoning. However, damage to other organ systems (e.g., acid-base imbalance and acute kidney failure) may complicate the condition. Symptoms may be delayed for up to 18 hours after exposure.

    Children do not always respond to chemicals in the same way that adults do. Different protocols for managing their care may be needed.

    CNS
    Initial signs and symptoms may include nausea, excessive sweating, headache, dizziness, and ringing in the ears. Seizures, loss of consciousness, coma, respiratory depression, and death may ensue. Coma and seizures usually occur within minutes to a few hours after exposure but may be delayed up to 18 hours.

    Cardiovascular
    Phenol exposure causes initial blood pressure elevation, then progressively severe low blood pressure and shock. Cardiac arrhythmia and bradycardia have also been reported following dermal exposure to phenol.

    Respiratory
    Mild exposure may cause upper respiratory tract irritation. With more serious exposure, swelling of the throat, inflammation of the trachea, tracheal ulceration, and an accumulation of fluid in the lungs can occur. Ingestion may lead to death from respiratory failure.

    Children may be more vulnerable to corrosive agents than adults because of the relatively smaller diameter of their airways.

    Children may be more vulnerable because of relatively increased minute ventilation per kg and failure to evacuate an area promptly when exposed.

  49. McKiernan Says:

    I liked the description Truthseeker, really. Thank you for clarifying the editor.

  50. McKiernan Says:

    “Vituperative condescension is the one note struck by those who believe it was AIDS, bloggers being the most wild-eyed. “Bad mothering,” cant mixed with AIDS “denial” rage, against a backdrop of hatred against the entirety of Alternative Medicine Culture, depicted as “crackpots,” by the Libertarian leaning Internet rationlists.”

    It didn’t pass the sniff test, truthseeker. LA CityBeat editor deleted it.

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