Skip to comments.Does HIV mean certain death? (AIDS and Global Warming have one thing in common: HARD-LEFT POLITICS!)
Posted on 10/28/2009 8:32:21 AM PDT by GodGunsGuts
Does HIV mean certain death?
In the quarter century since the world was introduced to the idea that a new sexually transmitted virus was the cause of Aids, HIV has been generally regarded as one of the biggest killers of our time. HIV/Aids has not been the mass disease in Britain that people were led to believe in the 1980s, but the death toll from immune deficiency diseases ascribed to HIV in Africa has been staggering. The scale of death there is an ongoing tragedy that tests the moral resolve of the rich world. How much do we care? Enough to ask hard questions about it? Enough to challenge the orthodoxy about the treatment, diagnosis and even the causes of Aids?
Anyone who attempts to do so soon realises the limits of acceptable debate. The HIV/Aids industry has long had the characteristics of a religion, but increasingly it is being revealed as a religion that has lost its way. Instead of fulfilling the legitimate purpose of inspiring charitable actions towards the millions in need, its most vocal representatives have become increasingly absorbed in denouncing heresies. It seems their purpose is not so much to cure, but to close down debate.
A scientist, activist or politician who so much as questions the orthodoxy is swiftly labelled a fool; or worse, someone responsible for the deaths of thousands, even millions, around the world. Any suggestion that there might be more to the disease than simply HIV, particularly in Africa, was to risk, and increasingly to guarantee, swift denunciation as a denialist. Once labelled in this way, the miscreant is considered beyond the pale of civilised society and scientific discourse. He is an idiot who can have his papers withdrawn, his funding cut off, and his contracts terminated. There have even been calls for denialists to be thrown in prison. This fervent self-righteousness, and the fear which accompanies it, has stifled scientific debate about Aids for years.
It is against this backdrop that Brent Leung, a young filmmaker, has released House of Numbers, a 90-minute documentary that presents such a strong and clear challenge to the orthodoxy that it demands our attention. It has picked up awards at five American film festivals, yet this acclaim followed a comprehensive trashing in sections of the mainstream media once the charge of denialist was raised. It deserves to find a place in a wider scientific debate about Aids, rather than being lazily dismissed as a contribution to so-called denialism.
Part of its power lies in the fact that it shows the lack of consensus about Aids and HIV. The founding fathers of the Aids-HIV link are interviewed, and shown to be dramatically at odds with one another, even over basic questions such as how to validate a diagnosis of HIV infection. Many of these leading figures tell us that infection with HIV means certain death: that once someone is infected through a single act of intercourse or a dirty needle, their immune cells are gradually killed off until they become defenceless against a wide range of conditions, eventually dying of full-blown Aids.
But this is dramatically challenged by Professor Luc Montagnier, awarded the Nobel Prize last year for discovering what came to be known as HIV. Attempting to counter years of doom-laden interpretations of his teams findings, he tells Leung that a healthy immune system can quickly overcome the virus. His exchange with his interviewer is worth repeating here.
We can be exposed to HIV many times without being chronically infected. Our immune system will get rid of the virus within a few weeks, if you have a good immune system, the scientist says. Leung responds: If you take a poor African whos been infected and you build up their immune system, is it possible for them to also naturally get rid of it? Nodding, Montagnier replies, I would think so. Then: Its important knowledge which is completely neglected. People always think of drugs and vaccine. Leung remarks that there is no money in nutrition. Theres no profit, yes, replies Montagnier.
When it comes to Aids, people also think in terms of statistics. The film takes its title from James Chin, former head of the World Health Organisationss global HIV statistics unit, who has been arguing for years that the United Nations figures have been inflated. Two years ago, the UN quietly admitted that this was indeed the case: Aids infections had peaked globally in 1998 and deaths peaked in 2005. At the time, Chins verdict was that Its getting closer to what it ought to be, but its still high. It seemed to me that that high-rise house of numbers had to crumble. He estimates the total number of Aids cases at between 20 to 30 million while the advocacy agency UNAIDS has claimed 42 million.
Many of the scientists interviewed as I was in House of Numbers have declared themselves opposed to the film. They did this without seeing it, on the basis of a trailer that made it clear Leung was not confining his narrative to the Aids orthodoxy as they had expected. Earlier this month, organisers of the Raindance film festival in London received floods of legal threats, emails, and hate tweets opposing the documentary even being shown. Similar, though happily unsuccessful, efforts were made to have the film withdrawn from last months Cambridge film festival.
I have much experience of being on the receiving end of the heretic hunt. As medical correspondent of the Sunday Times in the late 1980s, I reported Aids conventionally myself. I remember the missionary zeal with which I came back from the 1987 Global Conference on Aids in Washington. Aids reporting seemed more than a job; we actually had a chance to help save lives by warning that this deadly virus was spreading surreptitiously, gradually destroying the immune system of those infected, putting all sexually active people at risk.
On returning to the paper as science correspondent in 1991 after a two-year gap, however, it was becoming clear that the early predictions of spread were not proving accurate. Aids was remaining confined to groups with specific risks in their lives, including drug abuse, promiscuous anal sex and multiple transfusions. I was sent to report from several African countries in an investigation lasting several weeks. In essence, I found that misdiagnosis was causing enormous distress, misplaced treatment, and tragic diversion of scarce resources.
Widespread misdiagnosis of a supposedly lethal infection has brought huge social disruption as well as tragic personal consequences. In poor countries, with the real causes of Aids often still not being addressed, much of the extra money is being spent on unvalidated test kits, inappropriate drugs, and condom campaigns that do not discriminate between safe and risky sexual practices.
Leung concludes in House of Numbers: The victims of HIV and the dedicated professionals combating it deserve our sympathy, compassion and respect. However, at journeys end, I find myself perplexed, bewildered at times, with an overall feeling of dismay and sadness. I found a research community in disarray over the most fundamental understanding of HIV, all the while presenting a monolithic public posture of authority and certainty.
He goes further, claiming the HIV tests prove nothing, that some remedies kill, and that statistics have been manipulated to the point of absurdity. It is such conclusions that have drawn fire, but it is not only the interviews and the filmmaking that won the awards: Leung touches on a scientific critique that questions almost every aspect of Aids science, and which grips audiences that have been deprived for so long of any inkling that such questions have any validity.
This remarkable film offers a fresh opportunity for the scientific and medical communities to address the painful challenges it presents. Some $200 billion of American taxpayers money alone has gone into fighting HIV in pursuit of the theory that HIV means Aids, which means death. Asking awkward questions, as Leung does, is free. But it is the latter which we still seem to have problems with.
Perhaps Magic Johnson could shed some light on this...
Beat me to it ;-)
He was my first thought since I saw him on some ad this morning and thought that he looks pretty good for a man who was found to be HIV positive about 15 years ago.
Why was this article in a major British newspaper exposing the AIDS scandal moved to Gen/Chat? This is a conservative issue, as evidenced by the fact that it has been favorably covered by National Review, Policy Review, American Spectator, Reason Magazine, World Magazine, Concerned Women for America, etc, etc. What gives???
See the “Conservative Press” section of my profile page for more.
This way they, the left liberal loons, get to feel good about themselves.
How you may say? Because they get to say to the poor, vote for us, because we fight for your rights to abort your children (eugenics) and we fight for your rights to kill yourself (keep healthcare costs down) and we fight for your welfare checks (we have to keep the poor poor, or we lose votes for socialist policies and lose support for atheism).
Nor do they want AIDS to end. Not only has it become a tenet of the liberal religion, it has netted them billions of dollars courtesy of the American taxpayer. But apparently the mods don’t consider this post to be worthy of News, since they banished it to Gen/Chat.
In the world of political correctness someone has to say the obvious -
i.e. the same questioning logic applies to the anthropogenic CO2 ruse - association does not mean unilateral cause.
But the Left is, by definition, the world of reactionary bigots.
I have hit the abuse button, I have replied to admin moderator, and all I get is silence. The mod that used to banish all my Creation/ID posts to Gen/Chat wouldn’t respond to me either.
There is no big mystery here. Americans were dying of AIDS until big pharma dived into the problem. There have been about a dozen effective medications developed for HIV in the last 20 years. Most people diagnosed with HIV can have their viral loads lowered to near zero with a coctail of drugs and remain that way for decades.
I worked at a tertiary medical center towards the end of the AIDS epidemic. We had dozens of very sick people hospitalized waiting to die. As the meds came on line, people on deaths door started leaving the hospital through the front door rather than the morgue. Eventually, the AIDS wards were closed and the hospital went to an HIV out patient clinic. They don’t even have that anymore, HIV is treated by private doctors outside the hospital.
Most HIV positive people walk around now with undetectable viral loads. There is talk within the infectious disease profession of developing a definition of a cure so that they can start weaning a fraction of their patients completely off meds.
In Africa, it is a completely different story. The meds are too expensive and the disease is too widespread. There are various theories about why the disease affects different demographics than in the west. The one that makes the most sense to me is that there is widespread syphylis like spirochete infections that make it much easier to transmit HIV from female to male. There is a similar association with homosexual HIV transmission and syphylis in the U.S.
See my profile page.
==Because youve just become too big a pain in the @ss to deal with any more?...(Not to mention being a big stone around the neck of the freepathon)
Funny, it is you who have been identified as a pain in the @ss by the owner of FR for stalking me from thread to thread trying to get my threads banned. You have been told to knock it off by Jim Robinson himself, but you persist anyway. And if anyone is a stone around the neck of a freepathon, it is your intollerance for different points of view within the conservative movement.
concider yourself reported xcamel- you’ve done absolutely NOTHING but stalk GGG around posting insult after insult after insult to him- and you have nothign of value to add to any of GGG’s threads- ever- all you do is come here to fire off petty little insults, and it isn’t GGG who is the stone around FR’s neck- it’s you- GGG posts itneresting and thought provoking articles, and all yopu manage to contribute is childish insults and attacks while compeltely ignoring hte contents of the articles- I think I speak for a majority here who find your attitude and insults offensive and uncalled for-
You really do seem to be some kind of a legend in your own mind, don’t you.
You fronting tenor in the “boo-hoo choir” ??
Daddy, Daddy, he’s yelling at me!