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The Union of Concerned Scientists Got Science Champions January 14, 2016

Posted by angryscientist in About Me, Bad Science.
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UCS had a survey inviting people to vote for a Got Science Champion. I used to send them money, but became disillusioned, as I concluded they’re too compromised to deserve my support. One of their selections was California State Senator Richard Pan, who co-sponsored the bill taking away the philosophical exemption for parents to refuse to have their children vaccinated. This was their blurb about him:

3. Richard Pan: Protecting Children’s Health
Health care professionals and public health experts in California spent the first few months of 2015 desperately trying to contain a measles outbreak that began at Disneyland. At least 125 California residents were infected, and among the victims were some of the most vulnerable: pregnant women, newborns, and infants in neonatal intensive care units. This largely avoidable episode exposed the frightening consequences of the anti-vaccine movement. California State Senator Richard Pan, a pediatrician by training, stepped in to address the problem by sponsoring a bill requiring that all schoolchildren in the state be vaccinated, closing the religious and ‘personal belief’ exemption loophole that many parents had leaned on to avoid vaccinating their children. The bill was signed into law in July, and since then, Pan has been the target of death threats, protests, and a recall campaign for his seat in the state legislature. He’s taking the recall effort seriously, but has no regrets about his science-based response. “I ran to be sure we keep our communities safe and healthy,” Pan told The Sacramento Bee. “This bill is a shining example of me keeping my promise to the people of my district.”

They also invited suggestions for people “who stood up for science in 2015” they didn’t include. This was my response:

Gary Null, though no doubt you, as a defender of mainstream medical orthodoxy, consider him a dangerous quack.

Richard Pan doesn’t belong on this list. His bill protects nobody’s health, but he, along with most of the California legislature, received plenty of money from the pharmaceutical industry to hype “the frightening consequences of the anti-vaccine movement.” Do the Nuremberg principles mean anything to you? Do you deny that vaccines contain toxic ingredients and that their safety and efficacy is debatable? How’s that flu shot for this year working out? How about Gardasil? You are aware of the corrupting influence of money on mainstream science, no? Need I mention genetic engineering, nuclear power, poisoning food to kill pests, VIOXX, antipsychotics, the long list of drugs and other chemicals that had to be banned after the truth of their dangerous consequences could no longer be suppressed? Why do you believe the vaccine industry is immune to this corruption?

I got no response. I wonder if they will finally realize I’m not a supporter and will take me off their e-mail list. I shouldn’t be surprised; they think the climate conference was something to celebrate. Sometimes I wonder about organizations like these, whose side are they on? Some of the mainstream environmental groups maybe really don’t know any better, so are easily fooled by political chicanery, but UCS really should know better. This bill is based on faith in vaccines, not science, since science has shown clearly that faith is undeserved, that the risks of vaccines aren’t debatable and their efficacy is. For those who don’t know, the protection rate of the latest flu vaccine is estimated at under 20%. As usual, they blame a poor match between the vaccine, which has to be based on the flu strains expected to be circulating, and the flu strains that actually are going around this year. There’s no way to predict that in advance, so the flu vaccine is based on guesswork, since it has to be produced several months before people actually start getting infected.

I had measles and chicken pox as a kid, so I have lifetime immunity. They were unpleasant, but even if I hadn’t had them, I’d never get the vaccines. As I recall, when I was a child the only vaccines considered important were for polio and DPT. The vaccination for pertussis is notoriously ineffective, and the oral polio vaccine, at best, is responsible for more cases of paralysis than it prevents.

As the number of cases of the paralytic disease fall, world health officials have to grapple with a vexing problem: a component of the most widely used polio vaccine now causes more disease than the virus it is supposed to fight.

That’s a subtitle from Scientific American, which as far as I know isn’t known for peddling unscientific claims. The full article is available only to subscribers or purchasers of the digital issue.

Is 125 people now considered something to panic about? Of course the predictions were that the outbreak would spread like wildfire, since the number of children who didn’t get their MMR shot is substantial. I’ve yet to hear these vaccine crazy scientists or politicians explain why it didn’t. One death got blamed on the outbreak, but she was taking immune system suppressing drugs, which supposedly explained why the measles vaccine didn’t protect her, and practically anything could have killed her. She developed pneumonia as a complication and died.

Gary Null has repeatedly challenged vaccine defenders to debate him on his show, but of course they won’t; they think the science is settled as clearly on their side, and that Null is a quack. He notes that many of the most vocal protestors against this bill are mothers whose children have suffered dire reactions to vaccines, and that vaccine apologists make fun of them in ways that would be considered sexist if it were some other issue at stake. Vaccines are a sacred cow for many leftists, so they feel free to ridicule these mothers as stupid and ignorant. They should look in the mirror. But then, sexism among liberals and leftists is nothing new.

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The Bernie Sanders Issues Poll October 23, 2015

Posted by angryscientist in About Me, Bad Science, Feminism.
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Bernie 2016 Official Supporter Survey
Tell Us What Matters To You

A presidential campaign is about the issues. We want to know what matters to you. Submit this survey today to tell our campaign what you care about.

What is the #1 issue for you for this election?

What other issues do you care about the most?

Ending Citizens United and Reforming Campaign Finance
Fixing our Broken Criminal Justice System
Combatting the Effects of Climate Change
Reducing Income and Wealth Inequality
Immigration Reform that Helps Undocumented Workers
Fighting Institutional Racism
Ending Failed Wars and Reforming Our Foreign Policy
Enacting Paid Family Leave
Ensuring Equal Rights for LGBT Americans
Expanding Medicare for All
Make Public College Tuition-Free
Protecting and Expanding Social Security
Stopping Unfair Trade Deals
Taking on Wall Street and Breaking Up Banks
Defending Women’s Rights to Choose
Protecting Workers’ Rights

Why do the issues you chose inspire your support for Bernie?

This was my response:

None of those are among the top issues for me. How about the causes of climate change? Is combating its effects the only environmental issue you deem important enough to mention here? Nuclear power? Fracking? Genetic engineering? The pesticide and herbicide treadmill? What about equal rights for women? Or creeping fascism, national security going way overboard? Isn’t failed wars redundant, at least since World War II? Oh I forgot, Bernie wants to continue the drone strikes. I think Bernie is on the right side of some of these issues, but maybe they don’t seem important enough to put on this list. These are just some of the reasons I will never support a Democrat for President.

Conversations with the President, Part 2: A Dream Wherein I Lectured Him About Genetic Engineering November 3, 2013

Posted by angryscientist in Bad Science.
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I had a dream this morning, which I’m recounting to the best of my recollection. I went to a fund raising event where the President was giving his spiel about research creating good high-tech jobs, and I heckled him, yelling genetic engineering was an example of the research he was supporting that does more harm than good. He looked amused, though some security goons glared at me, and went on. Later he was taking questions one on one. He noticed me lurking around and beckoned to me, asking if I had a question I’d like to ask him, so I gave him a piece of my mind, then I stalked off intending to blog about it. I was about to do that when I woke up.

I told him, genetic engineering is a hoax. These companies whose research you tout are making piles of money off these crops they invented and patented, and for what? It sure as hell isn’t doing consumers any good.

He interrupted me and said, the onus is on the companies to come up with new varieties of crops that will benefit folks. These varieties have already gone a long way to help feed starving people all over the world. They are improving crops for the betterment of mankind just as farmers have always done.

I said, that’s what they want us to believe. There hasn’t been an increase in yield, or decrease in the use of chemicals, despite their claims to the contrary. They aren’t helping feed the world. That’s just public relations propaganda to fool the public while they laugh all the way to the bank. They’ve got friends in high places, so the bureaucrats who are supposed to protect people wink, nod, and look the other way. Their attitude is just like you said, these crops are equivalent to the old varieties, so what’s the big deal? These genetic engineering companies are trying to take over agriculture, buying out or destroying the competition. Organic farming is the way to go. Organic food is better quality, more nutritious, and doesn’t poison the planet. The genetic engineers claim their inventions are safe, that they have been studied extensively and there’s no evidence of danger. They cherry picked the evidence. They covered up and tried to discredit studies showing organ damage and cancer in test animals. What if that’s happening to people? What if this causes an epidemic of cancer when it’s too late to do anything about it? Is that what you want your legacy to be?

Then I figured I had said enough and stalked off. He did seem to listen, though he was rolling his eyes, shaking his head in disbelief, and apparently trying not to laugh. He tries to maintain an image of being open-minded and willing to listen, but at least on this issue, nobody’s going to change his mind; there are plenty of alleged scientists out there who are telling him genetic engineering is the future, and he believes them. The state of Washington is about to vote on an initiative to label food containing genetically engineered ingredients similar to the bill narrowly defeated in California last year, thanks to tons of industry loot funding commercials full of lies and distortions to scare the voters. Let’s hope the voters in Washington don’t get fooled again. And no, I don’t think Obama is quite the same as the old boss Bush, but he’s too close to it for me, and on this issue, almost all the politicians are of one mind, buying the industry line hook, line, and sinker. My Senator Barbara Boxer is sponsoring a bill for mandatory labeling, but that bill has a snowball’s chance in hell.

Fortunately people and politicians in many other countries aren’t so trusting of this technology, and even plenty of Americans say they wouldn’t buy these foods if they were labeled, not realizing almost every processed food not labeled organic already contains the fruits of genetic engineering. People don’t like being used as experimental test subjects, but unwittingly or not, they are. The industry hopes people won’t wake up until it is too late to do anything about it. Organic and conventional crops have already been compromised by drifting pollen, so slowly but surely, the gene pool is getting contaminated. It might be worth it if the benefits really outweighed the risks, but in this case, there are no benefits, except for genetic engineering companies and big agribusiness, and the risks, so cavalierly downplayed and dismissed by American scientists and regulatory watchdogs, are staggering and unknowable. But that’s how it goes when science is used for profit instead of truly benefiting people.

GARY NULL LIVE IN LA August 4, 2012 July 25, 2012

Posted by angryscientist in Bad Science, Uncategorized, Whistleblower Corner.
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Details here:

Close All Nuclear Power Plants Petition Pledge September 21, 2011

Posted by angryscientist in Bad Science, Uncategorized, Whistleblower Corner.
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Gary Null is sponsoring a petition to close all nuclear power plants. Unfortunately WordPress doesn’t allow me to put up the widget (JavaScript is prohibited), but this is the text.

Because I believe that nuclear reactors and power plants pose an unacceptable risk to the health, safety, and existence of our planet and every living creature upon it, I urge and will support an immediate shutdown of all nuclear facilities everywhere in the world, and a total ban on the construction of any new nuclear facilities. In pursuit of this goal, I promise to vote against any government leader or elected official who does not also sign 
this pledge.

Japan braces for nuclear meltdown March 12, 2011

Posted by angryscientist in Bad Science, Uncategorized.
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The earthquake and tsunami, as horrendous as they were, might be only a prelude to a much bigger nightmare. Five nuclear reactors have been heating up, without enough electricity to run their cooling systems. Their backup diesel generators were damaged by the tsunami, and batteries don’t last long. Mother Nature is about to show these cocky humans who think they can play with hellfire and get away with it the consequences of Murphy’s Law. Whatever can go wrong, will. The odds may seem to be astronomical, but here it is, nuclear meltdown, about to happen once again. At least one of the reactors may already be past the point of no return, and the situation at all five reactors is far from under control. Japan has declared a state of emergency, but there is little anyone can do, besides hope that man’s folly won’t bite too hard, this time. Radioactive steam has been released and people in the neighborhood evacuated, but these are desperate measures with little chance of preventing catastrophe. There is little doubt there will be a catastrophic meltdown; the question is how far will the radioactive material go after it spews into the atmosphere.

There are stories all over the web, as the situation escalates. Here’s an excerpt from Al Jazeera.

Japan fears nuclear plant meltdown
Last Modified: 12 Mar 2011 06:48 GMT

Japanese nuclear authorities say there is a high possibility that nuclear fuel rods at a reactor at the Daiichi plant in Fukushima prefecture may be melting or have melted.

The cooling system of the plant was damaged in the massive earthquake that struck norteastern Japan and triggered a tsunami, killing at least 703 people.

Kyodo News agency said on Saturday that radioactive caesium had been detected near the plant, citing the Japanese nuclear safety commission.

A state of emergency has been declared for five nuclear reactors at two different sites in Fukushima, located about 250 kilometres northeast of greater Tokyo.

Steam containing low-level radiation were released to relieve pressure and tens of thousands of residents have been evacuated from surrounding areas.

Radiation 1,000 times above normal was detected in the control room of one plant, although authorities said levels outside the facility’s gates were only eight times above normal, spelling “no immediate health hazard”.

The 8.9 quake and the tsunami cut the supply of off-site power to the plant and diesel generators intended to provide back-up electricity to the cooling system.

“The events that occurred at these plants, which is the loss of both offsite power and onsite power, is one of the rarest events to happen in a nuclear power plant, and all indications are that the Japanese do not have the situation under control,” Edwin Lyman, a nuclear expert at the Union of Concerned Scientists, a US-based nonprofit organisation, said.

As usual, the authorities are downplaying the possibilities, but they are whistling in the dark. If they get the situation under control, it will be a matter of luck. This is what happens when cocky scientists play with dynamite, thinking they know what they’re doing. Sooner or later, the piper must be paid.

Luc Montagnier on HIV and Nutrition December 1, 2010

Posted by angryscientist in Bad Science, Uncategorized, Whistleblower Corner.
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Could it be the winner of the Nobel Prize for discovering HIV has been having second thoughts about the medical Vietnam that discovery spawned? He says here the focus on drugs and vaccines overlooks much simpler and more cost-effective measures that could help people fight off HIV naturally! Antioxidants, hygiene, fighting other infections endemic in Africa? But as the interviewer observes, and he agrees, there’s no profit in nutrition.

This can also be downloaded from Gary Null’s site.

Urgent Action Alert: Help Us STOP GMO Eucalyptus Trees! January 26, 2010

Posted by angryscientist in Bad Science, Uncategorized, Whistleblower Corner.
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This action alert is from the Global Justice Ecology Project

Urgent Update: The USDA has reopened the comment period for their Environmental Assessment of ArborGen’s proposal to plant 260,000 genetically engineered eucalyptus trees across the Southern U.S. Comments are needed by 18 February to oppose this dangerous and destructive plan. Click Here to sign on to the public comment letter. More information below:

Release of Dangerous Genetically Engineered (GE) Eucalyptus Trees Threatens U.S. Forests/ Communities.

ACTION NEEDED BY 18 February! Tell the USDA NO WAY to ArborGen’s Eucalyptus Frankentrees

In an unprecedented move toward commercial large-scale release of GE forest trees in the United States, ArborGen is petitioning the U.S. government for permission to plant an estimated 260,000 flowering GE eucalyptus trees [1] across seven southern U.S. states in so-called “field trials.”[2]

The mass-planting of 260,000 flowering GE eucalyptus trees is a major step toward the unregulated development of large-scale GE eucalyptus plantations in the U.S. ArborGen has also requested permission to develop large-scale commercial plantations of GE cold tolerant eucalyptus across the U.S. South which the USDA has not yet ruled on.

Government approval of GE eucalyptus trees will set a dangerous precedent to allow the release of other experimental GE forest trees, including poplars and pines, that would inevitably and irreversibly contaminate native trees with destructive GE traits, devastating forest ecosystems and wildlife. Once GE trees escape, there is no way to call them back.

The only way to prevent the genetic contamination of forests is to ban the commercial release of GE trees before it is too late.

TAKE ACTION!
Tell the USDA that GE cold-tolerant eucalyptus plantations pose an unprecedented threat to U.S. forests, wildlife and communities. Tell them to reject ArborGen’s request to plant more than a quarter of a million dangerous invasive GE trees across the Southern U.S. Since these field trials are a concrete step toward unregulated commercial growing of dangerous GE eucalyptus, they must be rejected.

Sign on to the STOP GE Trees Campaign’s Comments to the U.S. government

and

Have your organization become a STOP GE Trees Campaign partner and endorse our goal of a global ban on GE trees! For more information about the STOP GE Trees Campaign, click here

Background:
According to ArborGen, eucalyptus is a “fast-growing hardwood tree that is a favorite of the international forest products industry”[3] Globally, forests in tropical and subtropical regions have been decimated for the development of eucalyptus plantations, with devastating results for communities and biodiversity. ArborGen now wants to spread this disaster to new regions with this GE cold-tolerant eucalyptus.

Some of the impacts caused by eucalyptus plantations that now threaten the U.S. include:

* Widespread destruction of native forests: Australian Eucalyptus were introduced to California in the 1850s and these invasive aliens now grow throughout the state; more than 200 species have been introduced into the U.S. The cold-tolerance trait will allow the disaster of eucalyptus plantations to be expanded into regions that are too cold for conventional eucalyptus–including the U.S. South.

* Uncontrollable wildfires: Raging wildfires in Australia this year, made worse by drought, traveled over 60 miles an hour, devastating wildlife and killing 173 people. The1991 Oakland, CA firestorm, exacerbated by eucalyptus, cost $1.5 billion in damages.

* Loss of fresh water: Eucalyptus trees are fast-growing “water-suckers.” They require tremendous amounts of water, threatening to worsen the drought already being experienced in areas of the Southern United States.

* Vast clearcutting of biodiverse forests to grow monoculture plantations of GE Eucalyptus clones;

* Silent forests: Wildlife that cannot use the Eucalyptus for habitat nor food will be lost. Endangered species will be threatened.

* Contamination of soils and groundwater with toxic pesticides used on the plantations, often aerially sprayed;

* Worsening of climate change through the destruction of carbon-rich native forests for carbon-poor plantations.

* Eucalyptus is a known host for the deadly pathogenic fungus Cryptococcus Gattii. Originally a tropical fungus, it was recently found around Pacific Northwest Eucalyptus groves, and can kill both humans and wildlife.

SUBMIT COMMENTS TO THE U.S. GOVERNMENT OPPOSING GE EUCALYPTUS PLANTATIONS

Download our 10 page report on the dangers of GE trees and wood-based agrofuels

To Read the USDA’s revised Environmental Assessment, click here

NOTES:
[1] These GE eucalyptus, a hybrid of Eucalyptus grandis X Eucalyptus urophylla, are engineered to tolerate colder temperatuves, produce less of the structural polymer lignin, and digest some of their own RNA in the hope of reducing fertility (a Terminator-type genetic technology), though this new EA admits that some fertile seeds have been produced by the existing 1 acre field trial of flowering GE eucalyptus. The permits, if granted, would also allow the GE trees to flower. Eucalyptus thrives in tropical to sub-tropical conditions, but ArborGen’s cold-tolerant Eucalyptus would allow growth in the Southern United States, which experience occasional winter freezes. The states targeted for field trials are Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, South Carolina and Texas. Note: in 2007 ArborGen was given permission to allow 1.1 acres of GE eucalyptus to flower. This was expanded to 7.6 acres with no public input. This means ArborGen could receive permission to expand these 330 acres of field trials after the fact.

[2] The number 260,000 is based on the number of trees ArborGen reported to the USDA, which was recorded in the USDA’s Environmental Assessment.

[3] See http://www.arborgen.com/eucalyptus2.php

For more details on the dangers of GE trees, view A Silent Forest, the GE trees documentary narrated by Dr. David Suzuki, which is posted on our blog, Climate Connections

GJEP also sent this as an e-mail, asking to please forward widely. This must be an example of what Obama called advanced biofuel technology. What a crock. The environmental movement doesn’t need friends like Obama. When he talks about putting science back in its rightful place, this sort of mad scientist’s wet dream is what he means. If anyone thinks that’s going too far, what about his other pet fantasies, clean coal and safe nuclear power? This nonsense just gives science a bad name. When the name of the game is profit, true science becomes an obstacle to be suppressed or mocked. Those who care about the consequences get derided as Luddites or hysterical wackos. This world has come to a sad state, when what is promoted as scientific progress has nothing to do with sound science or truth, and everything to do with making money. Environmentalists, wake up! This Administration is chock full of greenwashers, not environmentally conscious, not by any stretch of the imagination!

Harvard symposium explores HIV “denial” October 22, 2009

Posted by angryscientist in Bad Science, Uncategorized, Whistleblower Corner.
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Harvard conducted a symposium Monday on what the AIDS establishment calls HIV denialism. This is a slight improvement from AIDS denialism, since nobody being called an AIDS denialist actually denied the phenomenon of immune system collapse, only that it was caused by HIV. However, the unbridled hubris of AIDS experts was on full display.

Death by denial
Symposium explores HIV denial, conspiracy theories

People who deny that the HIV virus causes AIDS continue to persist in their beliefs despite overwhelming scientific evidence to the contrary, nurtured by the broad reach of the Internet and cherry-picked scientific claims, AIDS authorities said Monday (Oct. 19).

These experts need to look in the mirror. They are as guilty of cherry-picking evidence as any scientist corrupted by money. Where is this overwhelming evidence that HIV causes AIDS? There is plenty of evidence that it doesn’t, but of course, that’s cherry-picked out of consideration, out of sight, out of mind.

Researchers from Harvard, elsewhere in the United States, and South Africa convened at the Carpenter Center for the Visual Arts to decry HIV “denialism,” saying that the continued questioning of HIV’s role in AIDS harms those infected with the virus by discouraging both testing and treatment.

Both the testing and treatment are utterly fraudulent, so it isn’t the questioning that harms people afflicted with AIDS.

Laura Bogart, associate professor of pediatrics at Harvard Medical School and Children’s Hospital Boston, introduced the event, saying that denialism also includes odd beliefs, such as that drugs for HIV treatment actually cause AIDS. Denialism, she said, is gaining momentum because of the reach that its proponents have on the Internet, and it may have greater traction in communities that already mistrust the government because of past discrimination, revelations of secret medical experiments, and the like.

The symposium examined how denialism affects prevention and treatment, public policy, and human rights.

“Bad ideas have bad consequences,” Bogart said.

She’s got that right. The idea that HIV causes AIDS has terrible consequences. What’s so odd about the contention that HIV drugs cause AIDS? They sure as hell can cause the symptoms of AIDS, including death. Is Bogart trying to say HIV skeptics have greater reach on the web than the AIDS establishment? Who is she trying to kid?

Seth Kalichman, professor of psychology at the University of Connecticut, said denialist beliefs are surprisingly widespread. He said most people’s attitude when hearing of HIV denial is, “Oh, those people are still around?” In the uncertain early years of the AIDS epidemic, Kalichman said, denialists were dissidents from the prevailing but still uncertain scientific views. As the body of evidence about the nature of HIV and AIDS grew, dissent turned into denial, wrapped in conspiracy theories. Now, Kalichman lumps HIV denialists with those who deny the Holocaust and global warming, and who believe 9/11 conspiracy theories. All use similar strategies, he said, including false experts, bad science, and selective use of valid scientific results.

This guy has his nerve. There is plenty of good evidence to demonstrate the flaws in the HIV=AIDS theory, unlike any of his other examples. To lump these groups together is beyond insulting, it borders on slander. There is some reasonable doubt as to the theories explaining global warming and 9/11, but the Holocaust? Can this guy be serious, or is his smug blind faith so all-consuming he can’t see how farfetched his analogy is? The AIDS establishment is absolutely chock full of false experts, bad science, and selective use of valid scientific results. Look in the mirror, Mr. Alleged Scientist. How about Dr. Robert Gallo, for instance, who rewrote the paper that launched the whole HIV=AIDS theory so extensively, his revisions came to conclusions completely unjustified by the actual study done by his assistant, Dr. Popovic? Gary Null has posted a PDF of Gallo’s scribbles and crossouts on the original paper. The first sentence of the first paragraph on page 4 says it all.

Despite intensive research efforts, the causative agent of AIDS has not yet been identified.

Gallo crossed that sentence out. Gee I wonder why.

Kalichman cited a 2007 report on 696 gay men in five U.S. cities that showed a surprisingly high acceptance of denialist beliefs. Forty-five percent, he said, agreed with the statement “HIV does not cause AIDS,” and 51 percent agreed with the statement “HIV drugs can harm you more than help you,” remarking that it would be troubling if even half those numbers believed such statements.

Kalichman said research shows that the Internet is a critical source of denialist information, and that people who hold denialist beliefs are more likely to have symptoms, less likely to adhere to drug regimens, and less likely to take treatment medication in the first place.

What’s troubling is that anyone believes the AIDS establishment. If Kalichman’s theory about who doubts conventional wisdom is accurate, he shouldn’t worry, as those skeptics will be dying off in a hurry, right? Oddly, it appears that those who avoid recommended treatment are far more likely to survive, since taking those drugs long-term is another case of a cure which never cures anybody, but does a great job of exacerbating the disease.

Denialism may have done its most damage in South Africa during the tenure of President Thabo Mbeki. Mbeki, who endorsed denialist beliefs, delayed the beginning of large-scale AIDS drug treatment, which allowed the pandemic to grow unchecked.

Recent research showed how damaging denialist beliefs can be, concluding that Mbeki’s failure to roll out HIV drugs between 2000 and 2005 resulted in 330,000 unnecessary deaths and the infection of 3,500 infants with HIV.

Interesting how this result is blithely stated as fact. How many unnecessary deaths have been caused by HIV treatments, or by refusing to treat the actual diseases that resulted in deaths blamed on HIV? Thabo Mbeki had great courage to defy the AIDS establishment. Unfortunately sub-Saharan Africa is still afflicted with widespread poverty, malnutrition, infectious water, parasitic infections, tropical diseases, and tuberculosis, all of which can be deadly, particularly for people in poor health to begin with. This can account for most, if not all, of those allegedly unnecessary deaths. Yet the population is increasing in spite of all that, the great AIDS pandemic notwithstanding.

Something’s terribly wrong with this picture. All this money going to fight HIV is wasted, while relatively small sums could alleviate all those actual problems killing impoverished Africans in droves. However, since capitalism as we know it wouldn’t recognize the value of cleaning up the water and treating the actual diseases, the big money goes to researching HIV drugs and vaccines, while producing those drugs makes the manufacturers fortunes. Same old crap masquerading as science, though denouncing the critics as equivalent to Holocaust deniers is really going too far. I’m used to the ironic foolishness of denouncing concerned scientists such as myself as Luddites, or anti-progress, or uninformed environmentalist wackos, but really, how dare he make that comparison. This symposium stopped just short of calling HIV skeptics murderers. No, they’re trying to save the lives of those dying from the bad science passing as HIV treatment! That might sound like I’m calling doctors murderers, but I know they believe they’re trying to save lives, though it seems to me their efforts are consistently backfiring. Does Kalichman really think all the scientists questioning the AIDS establishment are that deluded, or false experts engaged in bad science and cherry-picking data? In the echo chamber of conventional wisdom, he can get away with that staggering leap of illogic. I say again, look in the mirror.

Could A Clean Energy Bank Wreck the Economy? Well, yes…… May 14, 2009

Posted by angryscientist in Bad Science, Uncategorized, Whistleblower Corner.
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This is a bulletin from the Nuclear Information and Resource Service (NIRS), which gives permission to repost this anywhere. It was originally posted at Daily Kos, where there are some comments.

Thu May 14, 2009 at 08:42:44 AM PDT
by nirsnet

These days, clean energy ranks right up there with Mom, apple pie and ice cream as an All-American attribute. You can barely sit through a TV show, listen to the radio, or even read a blog without coming across an ad from someone extolling the virtues of some “clean” energy form or another.
Never mind that some of them—from nuclear power to “clean” coal—bear no resemblance to the cleanest solutions like wind, solar and energy efficiency. Some industries have more money to spend on ads than others….

But clean energy has become All-American for good reason: we need clean energy for the 21st century. I’m a huge clean energy advocate, and I spend my days working to encourage implementation of clean, sustainable energy technologies.

So what could be more virtuous than a federal Clean Energy Bank? On the surface, the idea sounds perfect: the federal government would set up a bank to support the development and implementation of clean energy technologies, especially those that private investors can’t or won’t fund. In fact, it’s so perfect the Senate Energy Committee has already approved the concept as part of its upcoming energy bill, and the House Energy Committee is considering adding a Clean Energy Bank proposal from genuinely clean energy advocate Rep. Jay Inslee (D-WA) to the Waxman-Markey cap and trade climate bill.

So why is the environmental community lining up to oppose the Clean Energy Bank and considering it must-defeat legislation?

Well, there are a couple of teeny-tiny little problems with the concept as written in both the Senate energy bill and Inslee bill in the House. Kind of like there were teeny-tiny little problems with unregulated derivatives trading, or lack of federal oversight and regulation, or corporate greed, that brought our economy to its knees last October.

It is not at all far-fetched—indeed, it’s completely foreseeable—that, as the Clean Energy Bank legislation is currently written, we could see trillion dollar or more taxpayer bailouts of “clean energy” technologies within the next decade. You didn’t like TARP? Wait until taxpayers have to bail out the likes of Duke Power, UniStar Nuclear, Southern Company and even your local mom and pop solar and wind concerns at levels that would make even Citigroup or General Motors blush—except that there are a lot more “clean energy” companies and projects out there than there are national banks or car manufacturers.

I could be wrong, of course, but it’s my personal wild guess that taxpayers are getting a little tired of bailing out corporate America. And, if you follow my personal wild guess reasoning, the idea that taxpayers might be forced to bail out a trillion dollars, or even a few hundred billion, in “clean energy” failures would probably destroy any hopes of building a genuinely sustainable energy economy or effectively dealing with the climate crisis; not to mention, coming on the heels of what we are still going through as an economy, raising the specter of permanent recession. And, of course, any presidential administration that oversees such an eventuality is not likely to be around to cope with the next such eventuality. These are high stakes, folks, and all from the innocuous, even virtuous-sounding, Clean Energy Bank.

THE DEVIL IS ALWAYS IN THE DETAILS
A thousand mea culpas. This should have been posted and distributed a few weeks ago, before the Senate Energy Committee even started considering Senate Energy Committee Chairman Jeff Bingaman’s (D-NM) proposal to add a Clean Energy Deployment Administration to his energy bill. But we missed it, and so did everyone else, except, perhaps, the Nuclear Energy Institute.

Let’s face it: it’s pretty tough for environmentalists to oppose something called a Clean Energy Bank, or even a Clean Energy Development Administration, which is starting to sound a little more bureaucratic. Maybe we just wanted to believe.

But here’s the reality: Sen. Bingaman’s Clean Energy Bank bill would provide more concrete government backing for dirty energy technologies than anything any lobbyist for the nuclear power or coal industries could have dreamed of even a year ago. And here’s the rub: even if the Bank funded only renewable energy and energy efficiency technologies, it would still be an economy-wrecker. It is simply unacceptable on any grounds.

And here is why: ‘‘(3) RELATION TO OTHER LAWS.—Section 14 504(b) of the Federal Credit Reform Act of 1990 (215 U.S.C. 661c(b)) shall not apply to a loan or loan guarantee under this section.’’.

What this seeming gobbledygook actually means is that there is NO limit—none whatsoever—to the amount of money that can be directed to “clean energy” technologies by this proposed bank. $10 billion? No problem. $100 Billion? No problem. $1 Trillion? NO PROBLEM!

This was confirmed in discussions yesterday between Senate Energy Committee staff and experts from Union of Concerned Scientists and Natural Resources Defense Council. (We have to wonder if Rep. Inslee—a strong clean energy advocate and not exactly a good friend of the nuclear industry—might have missed the implications too; perhaps he hasn’t fully realized that his bank legislation, which was modeled after Bingaman’s, would set up an unlimited slush fund for the nuclear power industry)

The Bingaman Clean Energy Bank bill, as well as Inslee’s bill (which is nearly identical, with one minor improvement), would authorize this new entity—the Clean Energy Development Administration, which would have an administrator and a nine-member Board of Directors, and virtually no other oversight—to issue as much money in taxpayer-backed loan guarantees as it feels like for any projects that might fall under an exceedingly broad “clean energy” definition.

Let’s take a look at what might be funded under this definition: New nuclear reactors, for one, as many as the industry might consider building, at whatever cost the industry thinks necessary. That alone has the entire environmental community up in arms, since no matter what industry propaganda may say, the environmental movement remains adamant that nuclear power is an unacceptable solution to the climate crisis. It’s dirty—even without a catastrophic meltdown, it releases radiation into the air and water at every step of the nuclear fuel chain; it’s dangerous, because there is always the risk of catastrophic meltdown even with new reactors; it creates lethal long-lived radioactive waste we don’t have the slightest idea how to handle for millennia of millennia; it undercuts non-proliferation efforts abroad; and, even if none of the above were the case, it is the most costly method of producing electricity available and using it would divert resources from the cleaner, safer, cheaper, and faster means of addressing the climate crisis we need to implement.

“Clean coal” could also be funded under this definition, including such environmentally dubious (ok, I mean destructive) concepts as coal-to-liquids (a two-in-one pollution punch), as well as unproven carbon sequestration technologies.

But even if this Bank were only oriented toward renewable energy and energy efficiency, we would still have to oppose it. With all respect and love toward our compadres designing and building new solar PV, solar thermal, wind, geothermal and other 21st century technologies, even they don’t deserve unlimited taxpayer backing for their projects.

The Congressional Budget Office and Government Accountability Office both have already projected a 50% or greater failure rate for loan guarantees for new nuclear reactors. And there is no denying that the failure rate for renewable energy projects is going to be above zero, possibly above 20%. While it’s fine for taxpayers to take some risk for new energy technologies, it’s not fine to bet hundreds of billions of our dollars on new energy projects or take risks of 50% or more, especially on such capital intensive projects as new nuclear reactors, which are now projected to cost some $10 billion or more each.

And, for the skeptics out there, let’s face facts: the nuclear power industry is the one most in need of this money. Why? Because there is no private capital available to support construction of new nuclear reactors. It’s that simple—private investors simply won’t take that risk. If Bank of America or Citigroup have been thinking for the past few years that nuclear reactors are too risky but subprime mortgages aren’t, then I have to think a 50% projected failure rate might be too low. Admittedly, these are somewhat hard times for new renewable energy facilities as well, but until last October money was flowing freely to them, and as the recovery begins, private investment will begin flowing to them again. But private money won’t flow to nuclear power under any circumstances without the taxpayers taking the risk.

The reality is that the nuclear industry has already asked for $122 Billion in taxpayer-backed loan guarantees (most of which would actually be taxpayer-funded as well, through the Federal Financing Bank). And that would cover only about 20 reactors. Getting to the GOP’s dream of 100 new reactors by mid-century (outlined by Sen. Lamar Alexander, R-Tenn, in the GOP Saturday radio address a couple weeks ago), would cost at least five times that amount—and that’s before the cost overruns start rolling in. For comparison, a Department of Energy study of 75 existing reactors found an average cost overrun of 207%. If that level holds true for a new generation of reactors, we’d be looking at trillions of taxpayer dollars at risk.

AND WHAT CAN YOU DO?
Yes, I believe in supporting renewable energy and energy efficiency with taxpayer dollars—but limited taxpayer dollars. The potential for unlimited taxpayer loan guarantees for any technology offers the potential for economy-killing failure, for misdirection of money, for rampant corruption.

Have our Congressmembers learned nothing from the debacle of the banking, mortgage and various other crises? Apparently not.

But hopefully the public has, and together we can stop this nonsense.

Please join us in opposing the absolutely unconscionable Clean Energy Bank proposals now before the Senate and House. Contact nirsnet@nirs.org to get on our e-mail list to be able to take effective action; you can also sign up at http://www.nirs.org. We’ll keep you up-to-date and give you action ideas and opportunities. Or contact the local or national environmental group you’re already a member of—we’re all in this together. But act fast, these bills are moving quickly, even though no one, including Hill staffers, seems to understand exactly what they do.

Note: Rep. Chris Van Hollen (D-Md) has offered a different Clean Energy Bank bill, but it explicitly includes nuclear power and “clean” coal as “clean” energy technologies, and thus, while it doesn’t provide for unlimited loan guarantees, is also unacceptable. But you might want to contact Van Hollen and tell him that if he’ll amend his bill to include only genuinely clean energy technologies, it might be a good alternative to the unacceptable bills making their way through Congress now.

Michael Mariotte
Nuclear Information and Resource Service

Conversations with the President, Part 1: Gropergate December 16, 2008

Posted by angryscientist in About Me, Bad Science, Feminism, Uncategorized.
2 comments

Disclaimer: Any resemblance to the actual President-elect is strictly intentional, but the statements I’m attributing to him are pure guesswork on my part.

Me: Now look here, Mr. President, I’ve kept my peace while you assemble your team of hawks,  corporate friendly free traders, and pro-nuclear pro-agrofuel pollution-marketer scientists and environmentalists for hire. You’re not in office yet, and you’re supposed to get a honeymoon. Sorry, you have a scandal to deal with already.

Obama: I was stunned and dismayed by the actions of Governor Blagojevich, but neither I nor any of my staff are implicated in his corrupt dealings.

Me: I meant your speechwriter Jon Favreau, immortalized in a Facebook photo fondling a lifesize cardboard model of a famous woman while a buddy poses as if he’s trying to force beer down her throat, pulling her head back by her hair. I’m sure you know the story. Do you think an apology is enough?

Obama: Senator Clinton accepted the apology. That’s the end of the matter.

Me: So, that’s supposed to be the end of it? Wow, are you naive. Women aren’t about to put this aside just like that. You better believe they are pissed. Clinton has to make light of it. She wants that job. She’s in a bad position, hostile work environment I believe is the legal term?

Obama: Nothing could be further from the truth. Jon was naive and disrespectful, but he has learned from his mistake. He is sorry and will show proper respect to members of the Cabinet in the future.

Me: At least on camera. Do you expect anybody to believe that?

Obama: Why shouldn’t they? The apology was sincere. I believe Jon thought that was an innocent joke, but a lesson learned the hard way will stick.

Me: You are a hopeless optimist. You should fire him. He’s all fine words and you have to provide the substance. Why don’t you write your own speeches?

Obama: As if I have the time or the talent for that. I’m a communicator. That’s one of my talents.

Me: It’s called charisma. You don’t snow me. I think you’re stuck with Mr. Favreau because you think he writes great lines. Lines are only great if the speaker puts real feeling into them. Guys with charisma can put great feeling into lines, but it’s not quite the same as real feeling.

Obama: And they call me a parser!

Me: You’re a politician. You know the difference between acting and speaking your own words with your own feelings.

Obama: You know what happens to people who try that. The media is merciless, sharks pouncing at the first sign of vulnerability.

Me: I think the women in this race can attest to that. Do you think it’s wise to have a shark writing your speeches?

Obama: He’s a young man who didn’t realize the implications of his drunken actions. Senator Clinton has forgiven him. She has been gracious about the entire affair. What’s your problem?

Me: The implications of those actions.

Obama: The matter is closed.

Me: You wish! Fire the guy quick, or you risk women getting really riled up!

Obama: (Snorts) I think I’m a better judge of American women than you. I’ll take my chances. Senator Clinton has accepted the apology. She is satisfied Jon won’t be causing any more trouble making embarrassing spectacles of himself.

Me: You have great faith in this guy. Why? Is it if it’s not broken, don’t fix it? He is broken, so his apology isn’t worth much.

Obama: Jon Favreau is a fine upstanding young man. I’m certain he will grow and learn from this experience.

Me: Hard to argue with blind faith. You don’t need this kind of baggage. Bad enough you gave Larry Summers a high post. He’ll never live down that crack about women not being able to compete in hard sciences because of genetics. This is a great mind? Some people think Sigmund Freud was a great scientist, but his understanding of women was atrocious. He was a great one to pathologize female psychology, since he wanted to stuff it into his own framework. It didn’t fit, just like Summers and Favreau don’t fit in a government I could believe in, though they do seem to fit right in with the rest of your crew. That’s my problem. These are party hacks and scientists for hire. What is this, a kinder gentler version of corporate empire you’re promising?

Obama: I surround myself with the best minds, regardless of political affiliation, so I can hear different sides of each issue to inform my decisions. I reject your insinuations. These are people of the highest integrity. Your suspicions are baseless and cynical. America needs its people to hope for the best, so we can all contribute our best to make America a beacon of hope and liberty for the world again.

Me: All right, enough of you for now! You really ought to fire that speechwriter! I’m sure Obama isn’t listening to silly fools like me, or outraged feminists in the blogosphere. I had to say something, regardless. This is really callous and disrespectful to women. I don’t much like Senator Clinton, but she almost won, could have been VP, and Secretary of State is a top Cabinet post, if not the top. She deserves some respect from a speechwriter for the President. He sure has no business groping a mockup of her, grinning as though he was proud as could be. This was no joke or laughing matter, despite the yuck it up attitude of such luminaries as James Carville (It’s a piece of cardboard, stupid!). This is typical of the blatant abuse of the women running for President and VP in this campaign. Obama ought to put a stop to it here and now. This is his golden opportunity to show respect for women means something in this country, at least for this President. But he’ll pass. Political expediency rules the day. This is the change I need?

ETA: I decided to trackback to one of those outraged feminists who wants to keep this scandal front and center, and whose call to protest inspired this entry.

AIDS Inc. January 15, 2008

Posted by angryscientist in Bad Science, Whistleblower Corner.
2 comments

What is going on with the medical establishment? Is HIV the cause of AIDS, a more or less significant co-factor, or related to any disease at all? Why is HIV/AIDS diagnosed differently in different countries? This documentary by Gary Null blows the lid off the idea AIDS is settled science. Where is the cure? The latest vaccine trial backfired. The dissenters have their say, though censored in professional journals for their heresy, challenging all the hocus pocus, intolerance of questions, money changing hands. AIDS has become a big business, with all the attendant shady dealing.

HIV is the elusive immunity destroying retrovirus nowhere to be found in blood or tissue, except in viral fragments reconstructed by PCR, the polymerase chain reaction technique invented by Kary Mullis, winning him the Nobel Prize. He has plenty to say in this movie, about questions the AIDS community won’t, or can’t answer, like a reference paper proving HIV the cause of AIDS. There’s evidence HIV isn’t sexually transmitted. AIDS pioneer Robert Gallo never proved or discovered anything. He stole the credit for this virus from Luc Montaigner, who loaned him a sample for research. Virus expert Peter Duesberg also raises disturbing issues about AIDS, and how his opinions cost him, the heretic whistleblower virtually ostracized by his academic peers.

Is everything we are told about AIDS wrong? Why is that so hard to believe? Nothing new for the medical orthodoxy, and as usual, the drug companies are cleaning up while people die. Is AIDS another medical Vietnam? The scale of this scam may be comparable. These days, what’s real in science, true to life, uncorrupted by conflict of interest? Is there no respect left for reality, or theory that stands up under all critical scrutiny?

The theory that HIV is the cause of AIDS leaves out too many factors. Immune deficiency has so many possible causes in this toxic poverty-ridden world, same with low white blood cell counts. It can be short or long term, or due to collapse under stress overload. Especially in poor nations, it doesn’t take much to overwhelm the immune system, but it used to be that AIDS was blamed for rare opportunistic diseases, not common ones like tuberculosis and malaria in Africa! What could possibly be the point of reassigning deaths due to those diseases to AIDS? Money! Money flows for AIDS, not much else, so real diseases and causes are overlooked, as funding dries up. When people are treated for their diseases, they get better. When they get AIDS drugs, they might get better, for awhile, but chemotherapy drugs are not meant for continuous use. If the dose is low enough, they may not be fatal for quite awhile. The dose of AZT when it was the only or primary treatment was a quicker death sentence.

This is a bad science fiction horror story about medical science run amok! Somebody wake me up from this nightmare! You can try, tell me Gary Null, and other experts in this movie, are all wet. The movie is available on Google video as well as his earlier documentary, Deconstructing The Myth Of AIDS. From this nightmare, there is no awakening, though as I noted in my previous blog entry about the curious study finding no link between viral load and how sick the study participant was, JAMA suggested looking for contributing factors was exciting.

The study challenges the current belief that the degree to which the virus replicates itself is the trigger for the loss of CD4 cells, white blood cells that are a key component of the body’s immune system.

An accompanying editorial in the journal said the findings were exciting because they suggested that researchers should look for and target non-viral factors that set off the eventual decline in the immune system.

What’s really going down with immune system collapse? If HIV is not the problem, what’s the point of taking these cocktails? They might, as a side effect, kill the opportunistic disease, so people might feel better for awhile, but it’s no cure for what ails them, whether poverty or other causing immune overload. The movie shows a center in Africa treating sick children by feeding them properly and treating their diseases. Those kids get better. AIDS in Africa is a distraction, a fearsome name to cover for old problems, like the local infestations, civil wars, malnutrition, drought, industrial and agricultural pollution, climate change, outsider meddling. none of that is important because AIDS is The Problem! Unaids just last Nov. had to defend its overestimation of HIV in Africa against charges of deliberate alarmist inflation.

HIV is not the problem. The so-called AIDS test is protected by a curious disclaimer in its package insert that it’s not meant to establish a diagnosis of HIV infection. It’s a non-specific antibody test that can cross react with all sorts of unrelated things, so the common tests are riddled with false positives. When Dr. Gallo originally submitted that test, it showed too many people positive, so it was rejected. He got it to pass muster by reducing the sensitivity. The drug treatment is more deadly than HIV, quite capable of causing AIDS or liver failure, now a primary cause of death from AIDS, and treating people for what is making them sick is their best chance to recover.

I invite debate on this subject. I am not a doctor, but I am a scientist and logic expert, and this stinks of bad science. If you think HIV causes immune system collapse, explain that study I cite. The AIDS establishment has plenty to answer for. I think this film should be shown as evidence in a trial. What is happening to people diagnosed with HIV is criminal, if not murder. The average doctor may not realize how the science of HIV doesn’t hold up, but anyone who watches this film, if your faith in conventional wisdom is unshaken, you are no scientist. I challenge anyone with that faith to defend this way of hastening people to death who could have lived.

Mother Jailed, Put On Trial for Curing Her Son of Melanoma October 3, 2007

Posted by angryscientist in Bad Science, Uncategorized, Whistleblower Corner.
285 comments

Laurie JessopChad JessopCrystal JessopJessop FamilyAn unholy alliance of California Child Protective Services (CPS) with a hostile doctor and judge is attempting to railroad Laurie Jessop, framed as a threat to her son and the establishment for finding a way to cure him of malignant melanoma. She is now on trial, under a gag order, since she had gone to the press. When she was arrested, she was put in maximum security, solitary confinement, in the Orange County, CA jail. They claim that everything about. her says anti-Establishment, so she was told, as she was considered a threat in starting a riot.

On the morning of Sept. 12, Gary Null read on KPFK, a Pacifica station in Los Angeles, an e-mail from Ron Miller, who had met Ms. Jessop at the Cancer Control Society annual convention during the Labor Day weekend. They had discussed this persecution by Big Brother in the guise of saving her son from this evil mother who has failed to protect him! She disobeyed doctor’s orders and found a natural way to cure her son. These forces arrayed against her and insisted he must have the cancer removed surgically and attacked with the standard chemical fare. The cancer is gone, but nobody in authority will accept that because her doctor doesn’t believe that’s possible.

The initial biopsy of the mole was done in February. Their regular doctor was on leave when test results came in. A nurse informed them of the bad news. On May 8, Chad Jessop had a follow up appointment with a medical group doctor, by the name of Dr. Masciana, who insisted he needed surgery to excise the site within a week, or he could die any day now! This doctor is a general practitioner, not an oncologist or qualified to do cancer diagnosis or surgery. Chad and his mom decided to pursue holistic treatment for him. Incensed, the doctor reported her to Child Protective Services on the grounds of gross negligent child endangerment. She yelled at Laurie “all of you Jehovah’s Witnesses are all the same,” never mind Laurie and Chad are not Jehovah’s witnesses. Dr. Masciana also told Laurie, with her son present, that his death was imminent. At the close of the appointment, Dr. Masciana informed Laurie that she was referring the case to Social Services. In further investigation, Child Protective Social Services is a misnamed government agency whose employees get paid bonuses every time they take children away from their parents.

That evening Laurie called an attorney who advised her that she had 48 hours or less before Social Services showed up. If she could not prove she was following doctor’s orders, they’d take her son. Since Dr. Masciana had created such a traumatic experience for Chad, he feared the doctors and threatened to run away. In honoring Chad’s wishes for continued holistic care, Laurie took her son to San Diego to continue holistic care using a number of various alternative treatments such as: ozone, hyperbaric oxygen chamber, hydrogen peroxide, energy work, Rife, nutritional supplements, and deep emotional work. Laurie also used “black salve” that she purchased from Canada to remove the mole tissue. Black salve was developed by Native American Indians more than 200 years ago, and used in the treatment of skin lesions, cancers, warts, and moles. Figures our FDA banned it, because it works.

When Chad insisted on hitting the road to continue alternative therapies and getting further diagnostics, that left a question as to where Laurie’s daughter Crystal would go. A close friend of the family and Crystal’s best friend agreed, and this felt like a perfect fit under the circumstances, so Laurie legally signed Crystal over to the family and gave them all the necessary medical insurance information. On May 22, the local sheriff and CPS had taken her daughter out of class, interrogating her mercilessly, telling her lies about her mother, trying to force her to reveal where Laurie and Chad had gone, and then forced her to go on a police joy ride and show them where they reside. All of this was done against her will and carried on for six hours!

They applied “Black Salve” directly to the area in question, thus giving Chad a holistic version of a large border excision. It took about two and a half weeks for the wound to heal. When it was healed Laurie took Chad to a Del Mar dermatologist for a biopsy. The test results were negative of any signs of melanoma! The next two weeks were concentrated on once again healing the tissue to get another biopsy. Upon the wound site being healed, a melanoma specialist did a punch biopsy and a complete lab analysis on Friday, June 15. Again, no sign of cancer could be found in the biopsy and the blood work was in healthy ranges with no distinguishing markers that would otherwise be present in a patient that would have advanced stage four melanoma, as had been previously reported! Was it a miracle, or an activated immune system in a healthy young man, with some useful help, that healed the melanoma?

The following Monday, June 18th, Laurie and Chad turned themselves in to the San Diego Social Services office, with all of their documentation. They were detained for 4 hours, then told that arrest warrants for Laurie and Chad were issued from Orange County. Chad was locked up at the Palenskie Center in San Diego for one night. He had 2 guards watching him around the clock, since he was considered a flight risk. When Laurie went to visit Chad they could not have any privacy, as both guards listened to every word that was said. Laurie spent over nine thousand bucks in San Diego for the treatments done over the five week period of time, and has all the receipts as proof. A new social worker, David Harper, was put on the case. He picked Chad up in San Diego transporting him to Orangewood Children’s Home in Orange County for the next two weeks, where he got fed spaghetti and meat balls, food not fitting one healing from cancer. One aspect of Chad’s treatment was a healthy diet of living foods, but Ms. Jessop’s requests of this social worker that Chad get proper food fell on deaf ears. He did tell her she was allowed to see her daughter graduate from Junior High School. She told him nobody could keep her away without a court order, and that she would be there! The social worker informed Laurie that he completed the paper work to lift the warrant order on her.

After her daughter’s graduation, on June 21st Laurie went to make academic arrangements for her son, having missed five weeks of school. Laurie showed the documentation to the principal and vice principal. The Vice Principal knew Chad well, as Chad did his Eagle Scout project for him at the high school. Chad is now an advanced Eagle Scout. No matter, the VP called police to arrest Laurie at the school and haul her off to the county jail. The arresting deputy harassed her. When Laurie protested, the officer told her she didn’t have to like her or be nice to her. After arriving at the county jail, her first telephone call had been to the social worker, David Harper, although he did nothing to get her out of jail, nor was he willing to help correct the record. Laurie was physically abused, they spread her legs twisting her knee, when she complained they called out “Resisting…Resisting” then they pushed her violently to a cell wall (behind the cameras) causing her to twist her neck, shoulder and arm. After being worked over, they took away her jacket, shoes, socks, and toilet paper, and locked her up. Her holding cell was extremely cold and she was deliberately denied toilet paper. She asked for toilet paper, only to be answered it must have been taken for good reason and she was not getting any. She was denied toilet paper from approximately 3:30pm until 11:00pm. One has to wonder, what was she going to do with the toilet paper, hang herself? By 11:00 pm Laurie got taken to be assessed. She asked “is this a madhouse run by animals, who is running this place?” Laurie told this officer her story for half an hour. He let her talk, then said he sees all kinds of characters, his job is to ascertain threats. He told her she has the fire, the spirit and the power to overturn the system and create a riot. He informed her she’d be put in solitary confinement, but she might get a roommate, probably a drug offender. She was forced to take a chest X-ray against her will, without any explanation and ridicule from the officers. Laurie and her two children have never been in any type of trouble with the law, but were treated like hardened criminals. She was shocked to learn women taking showers have no privacy, that male guards are watching. The next night she got a 58-year old roommate charged with kidnapping her children from her husband 20 years ago, after being extradited from Tennessee on outdated bogus charges tagged with 200 thousand bail. It would appear that Orange County is desperately trying to maintain job security at the expense of the innocent! (more…)

Trans Activists Torpedo Film by Lesbian May 25, 2007

Posted by angryscientist in Bad Science, Feminism, Uncategorized.
25 comments

Oh, those poor transgender folks, feeling oppressed by a film created by acclaimed lesbian filmmaker Catherine Crouch, because her film makes a point they don’t want to hear. This article from the Bay Area Reporter I found linked at Womensspace. Heart said she would be blogging about it shortly. Crouch says:

Things are getting very strange for women these days. More and more often we see young heterosexual women carving their bodies into porno Barbie dolls and lesbian women altering themselves into transmen. Our distorted cultural norms are making women feel compelled to use medical advances to change themselves, instead of working to change the world. This is one story, showing one possible scary future. I am hopeful that this story will foster discussion about female body modification and medical ethics.

Not if the transgender activists have their way! They say Crouch and her film are peddling transphobic stereotypes! That’s news to her. At least one of the outraged transmen is torn about the idea of censoring her, but such qualms didn’t stop more than 130 people from signing a petition denouncing her film and Frameline’s decision to screen it. I have to ask, who is oppressing whom here? She is worried about this trend of women who don’t fit the female stereotype feeling they have to change into men. Who sold them that bill of goods, I’d like to know. I’ve had more than a few women friends. None of them fit the female stereotype. What the hell does taking testosterone and going through such drastic surgery have to do with being a gender outlaw? Nothing. That’s just trading one stereotype for another, not to mention probable cancer or other major health problems to look forward to. I think it’s important to discuss the compromised medical ethics involved, but to these outraged transpeople, that’s just more of the same old transphobia!

Why would women do this to themselves? I think it has everything to do with the way culture indoctrinates everyone to see women as inferior to men. One would think women rebelling against stereotyping wouldn’t fall for this deceptive solution to their issues with how females are supposed to be. What does it buy them, a ticket to validate female inferiority from the other side? I don’t know, but it sounds like a hell of a way to rebel, becoming a man to prove to oneself one is not like a typical woman? There is no such thing as a typical woman anyway, at least not from my point of view.

Men are different in that respect, because we men are highly rewarded for conforming, and most men don’t have the balls to defy how men are supposed to be. In a sense, women are also rewarded for conforming, but that reward is more like hollow societal approval for accepting their place as inferior beings, which offers no protection from being harassed, raped, or battered. Typical men don’t have to deal with such threats. Transmen do, especially when discovered.

I’m not going to claim to understand why women do this to themselves. I have my suspicions, but no way of knowing. I can sort of comprehend the MTF phenomenon, because the male stereotype makes me want to distance myself, at least psychologically. As a man who respects and cares about women, I find it abhorrent and incredibly sad that women would feel this is a viable way to escape oppression. Maybe they feel changing the world is hopeless. I could certainly understand that pessimism, though I don’t share it. I’m not in their shoes, though I’m a gender outlaw myself, considering myself a straight androgynous man. I’m fascinated by women, but I have no desire to alter my biochemistry. I’m weird, and like it that way, despite the flak I catch for it.

HIV and AIDS: Where’s the correlation? November 11, 2006

Posted by angryscientist in Bad Science, Uncategorized.
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I found an amazing study on MSNBC, which basically says there is no correlation between the viral load and how sick a person is. Sound unbelievable? Only if you swallow the orthodox line. Excerpts of the article:

Amount of HIV not indicative of AIDS progress
Viral load, often used to determine meds, not good predictor, study says
Reuters
Updated: 4:18 p.m. PT Sept 26, 2006

But a study of 2,800 untreated HIV-positive individuals found only about 5 percent of the variations in viral load corresponded to variations in immune system damage.

Depletion of CD4 cells is therefore not a simple consequence of the amount of virus circulating, said the study published in this week’s Journal of the American Medical Association.

“The results of this nationwide study may have profound implications in our understanding of how HIV causes disease and in our approach to the management of HIV-infected patients,” said lead investigator Dr. Benigno Rodriguez of Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland.

Because of issues of drug resistance and the potent side effects of the drugs, doctors and patients often defer starting medications until medically necessary.

The study challenges the current belief that the degree to which the virus replicates itself is the trigger for the loss of CD4 cells, white blood cells that are a key component of the body’s immune system.

An accompanying editorial in the journal said the findings were exciting because they suggested that researchers should look for and target non-viral factors that set off the eventual decline in the immune system.

Well! And what might these non-viral factors be? And if HIV is not what sets off the eventual decline in the immune system, why bother trying to destroy it with those drugs with such potent side-effects? By the way, one side-effect of the heavy doses of AZT that used to be the accepted treatment for AIDS is immune system devastation, followed by death.

There are so many factors compromising our immune systems, it’s a wonder we don’t all have AIDS. In a relatively healthy person, the toxic burden we all carry merely weakens our immunity, not to the point that we die from opportunistic infections that the body ordinarily can fight off. In a place like Africa, where AIDS victims are generally dirt poor, starving or at least malnourished, under constant attack from malaria, tuberculosis, parasites, and other diseases associated with filthy water, is it any wonder they die early? Attributing that to HIV is just an excuse to ignore their real problems.

USA salves its guilty conscience by giving Africans surplus genetically engineered food, milk full of recombinant bovine growth hormone, condoms, vaccines, AIDS drugs, and recently DDT. Is any of that really helping them? I doubt it. More likely that kind of aid does more harm than good.

Gary Null interviewed Peter Duesberg on his 9/29/06 Internet radio show to discuss this study.

Update: The MSNBC link has expired, but the story can still be found at the Children’s Aid Fund October 2006 HIV Update or at The Chive

WHO Says DDT needed to control malaria September 16, 2006

Posted by angryscientist in Bad Science, Uncategorized.
2 comments

The World Health Organization is not about promoting health. DDT has been banned for many years in rich nations, but now WHO insists DDT should be sprayed inside houses in all countries where malaria is a problem.

This quote is in most of the news stories:

“One of the best tools we have against malaria is indoor residual house spraying,” said Dr. Arata Kochi, director of WHO’s malaria program.

“Of the dozen pesticides WHO has approved as safe for house spraying, the most effective is DDT.”

Here is another juicy quote, from CBC News:

Environmental groups that previously opposed DDT spraying such as Environmental Defense and the Sierra Club endorsed the plan, while stressing the need to search for alternatives.

As if there are no alternatives. Give me a break. Even WHO does not say there are no alternatives, just that DDT is the most effective. Often what seems the most effective way of dealing with a problem has consequences worse than the problem itself. Malaria can kill, but so can DDT, especially poverty stricken malnourished people. As a prime endocrine disruptor, DDT also has nasty effects on childhood development, but WHO has the nerve to say DDT presents no health risk when used properly. This meat ax approach brings to mind the old canard about destroying the village in order to save it.

Prescription for Disaster August 24, 2006

Posted by angryscientist in Bad Science, Uncategorized, Whistleblower Corner.
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What is going on with the Food and Drug Administration, entrusted to protect public health from unsafe food and drugs? FDA seems more concerned with protecting the public from emergency contraception and dietary supplements than dangerous drugs or foods, due to inside influence by industries the agency is supposed to regulate, with disastrous consequences. The award-winning Gary Null documentary Prescription for Disaster exposes the corruption and bias built into the medical system. From the ranks of government, medicine, and the drug industry, some people are concerned enough to shed light on the money machine masquerading as the best health care system in the world. Vioxx whistleblower Dr. David Graham expounds on how dangerous drugs like Vioxx get approved and promoted to lure in the trusting public.

Conflicts of interest are rife at FDA, causing it to look the other way at the incredible corruption, waste, and side effects of Big Pharma. Detail people are trained, not in medicine, but to sell doctors drugs, while slick marketing campaigns manipulate people to pressure their doctors to prescribe drugs, often against their better judgment. Doctors working for a HMO are not allowed to spend much time with patients, not enough to determine the cause of a complaint or whether a drug the patient requests is warranted. Most nations do not have this problem because marketing prescription drugs directly to consumers is not allowed. The pressure to go along with the system takes many forms, bribery, intimidation, firing whistleblowers, smear campaigns, armed raids. Dr. Jonathan Wright describes such a raid on his clinic. FDA claimed it was after pure B vitamins made in Germany. Meanwhile Americans spend half the world total on prescription drugs. Behind the scenes schemes CODEX, part of the free trade agenda to freeze dietary supplements out of competition with drug-based medicine. Only citizen outrage has kept FDA from regulating most supplements into the dumpster as unapproved drugs.

The mind altering component of medicine is another scam of unimaginable proportions. Votes by a psychiatric committee determine which symptoms get an official ID number as a mental disorder, despite the lack of objective criteria for diagnosis. The profit margin on some popular drugs makes oil companies look magnanimous by comparison. Manufacturing cost has little to do with price; some antidepressants are especially cheap, costing pennies a bottle, but the price is what the market will bear. The imperative to maximize profits applied to medicine means profits rise, not from curing or preventing a complaint, but from keeping the patient coming back for more medicine. Medicine driven by the profit motive generally tars alternative approaches as quackery or outright illegal, since these cannot be patented, but might actually help people, unlike the standard approach to chronic conditions, alleviate the symptoms regardless of side effects. One might well ask, who are the real quacks in this system? Where is the scientific integrity? When doctors are getting bad information they are trained to accept as reliable, blindness prevails, people are on their own, far better off to do their homework than to have blind faith in professional competency, and scandals such as Vioxx, hormone replacement therapy, making children docile sheep with psychotropic drugs, as horrendous and unnecessary as this film extensively documents they are, may be just the tip of the iceberg.

The DVD and a trailer are available at garynull.com, as well as the related Drugging of our Children.

Update 9/13/2006: USA Today reports on Dr. Graham blasting the replacement for Vioxx Merck is trying to get approved.

FDA whistle-blower Graham blasts new Merck arthritis drug

Updated 9/12/2006 9:51 PM ET

The arthritis drug that Merck has developed to compete with Celebrex may be as risky for the heart as Vioxx, writes Food and Drug Administration whistle-blower David Graham in an editorial posted online Tuesday by a medical journal.

In considering whether Arcoxia should be approved, “the FDA, academia, and the medical research enterprise are once again faced with the opportunity to forsake common sense by willfully accepting misdirection and disinformation presented in the guise of science,” Graham writes on the Journal of the American Medical Association‘s website.

An editor’s note says the FDA allowed Graham to write the editorial as a private citizen, not as an agency employee. The editorial and the two studies it accompanies will run in the Oct. 4 JAMA, but they were posted online early “because of the public health implications,” a JAMA press release says.

Graham, a physician in the FDA’s Office of Drug Safety, made news nearly two years ago when he told a Senate panel that the agency was “virtually defenseless” in preventing a “tragedy and profound regulatory failure” such as Vioxx.

You can see Dr. Graham giving that testimony in this movie. Unfortunately, it fell on deaf ears, so nothing of any significance has changed.

Mining Industry Malarkey August 24, 2006

Posted by angryscientist in Bad Science, Uncategorized.
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Barrick, a gold mining company based in Canada, recently got approval from Chile to go ahead with its controversial Pascua Lama project. Opponents claim Barrick will destroy two glaciers high in the Andes to get at the gold beneath. Originally the plan was to relocate these glaciers. Barrick denies the orebody it wants to mine is under any icefields or glaciers. It says glaciologists classify the icefields involved as glacierets or ice reservoirs rather than traditional glaciers. However, Barrick quotes COREMA, the regional Chilean environmental agency: “the company shall only access the ore in a manner that does not remove, relocate, destroy or physically intervene the Toro 1, Toro 2, and Esperanza glaciers.” So if there was never any plan that would endanger these glaciers, since according to Barrick they are outside the limit of the pit containing the orebody it intends to mine, what is COREMA referring to?

Another mining company just won the 2006 Hardrock Mineral Community Outreach and Economic Security Award from the Bureau of Land Management. The Kensington gold mining project, being developed by Coeur d’Alene Mines, is under fire from environmentalists because of its plan to dump the mining waste in a nearby lake. From Yahoo Finance http://biz.yahoo.com/prnews/060809/sfw045.html?.v=68

In an award letter, BLM Director Kathleen Clarke noted that the award is presented annually to “those hardrock mining projects that have shown responsible mineral resource development while demonstrating an understanding of sustainable development. We salute the effort of all employees at Coeur Alaska’s Kensington Gold Mine for their outstanding accomplishments and contributions to the community.”

Coeur’s Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer Dennis E. Wheeler said, “We are honored and humbled to be recognized by the BLM with this award. BLM is uniquely qualified to determine what constitutes responsible development because of its very charter, which is to sustain the health, diversity and productivity of some 260 million acres of public lands for the use and enjoyment of present and future generations. Since its inception, the Kensington mine has been guided by principles that are entirely consistent with this charter.”

The Alaska U.S. District Court dismissed a lawsuit challenging a permit given Coeur by the Army Corps of Engineers to dump its waste in the lake. Coeur is primarily involved in silver mining, and has won several environmental awards over the years. Presumably these awards are as meaningless as this recent BLM award.

Friendly Fire: Exposing Gulf War Syndrome August 4, 2006

Posted by angryscientist in Bad Science, Uncategorized, Whistleblower Corner.
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One of the worst culprits misusing science is of course the military. It is bad enough what havoc modern weaponry wreaks on the target, but the soldiers hardly escape unscathed. In Vietnam it was just Agent Orange poisoning. Gulf War syndrome makes that look like a picnic. The military has a long history of experimenting on soldiers, and it appears their vain attempts to inoculate against weapons sent to Iraq from USA to fight Iran, such as botulism, anthrax, nerve agents, had nasty side effects on soldiers who never made it to Iraq. Depleted uranium is a euphemism for the stable isotope, since it is no good for fission bombs, but fine for dirty bombs. Nuclear waste is far more potent than DU in that sense. Military experts have the nerve to say DU is not toxic. It does take nearly the age of the earth for half to break down, so the rate of emission is slower than any other radioactive element. This does not make it safe by any means, especially if inhaled. Besides constant X-ray bombardment it releases helium ions, called alpha particles. Helium in its normal state is the most stable, unreactive element there is. Without its electrons, helium will burn as bad than any acid. DU does not hold a candle to plutonium as a cause of cancer, but when these DU weapons hit targets, that dust rides the wind. Childhood cancer and birth defects are increasingly commonplace in Iraq, and soldiers show the effects as well.

That was the state of my knowledge before I saw the LA premiere of the latest Gary Null documentary, titled same as this post. Perhaps you think you know everything about this syndrome. I did, but by the end I was so angry it took me a long time before I could speak. Between that and other issues of mine with speaking in public, I did not persist in raising my hand, so had to ask an associate if Null would mind if I blog about his movie. I did not agree with every statement in the movie, nor all the comments Null made, visiting LA for the premiere and to launch a new health support group. This was of minor import to me, as is usual with Null. I could nitpick over technical minor issues, but the man is an innovative genius, and a straight shooter, as far as I can tell. This is a rare combination, in my estimation, and his documentaries have impact, not just on me.

I cannot give too much away. The movie is not available to the general public yet, and with a news blackout preserving the coverup the movie blows out of the water, it may never make it out. The trailer can be seen at friendlyfirethemovie.com or garynull.com. One star of the movie is a defense dept. whistleblower, disclosing a public relations program waged by his agency to spread disinformation about Gulf War Syndrome, that there was no physical cause tied to the war, only a possible stress disorder. This may be what made me most angry, the coverup angle. They knew what they were doing to the soldiers and the people. They knew all along and did it anyway, just another military experiment. Null sent out at personal expense promotional copies to major media reporters and all members of Congress. Who wants to talk about yet another coverup? Some members of Congress are talking about their knowledge. You can see one in the trailer, and no, it is not some bleeding heart liberal who hates Bush. This coverup has been ongoing since Gulf War I, so it is not a partisan issue. Bill Clinton and Arnold Schwarzenegger have both sent Null personal notes thanking him for making the film. Also in the trailer, a former CIA analyst states one supplier of biological weapons to Iraq was the Centers for Disease Control. See this movie, if it ever gets out, there is plenty more disclosed to make anyone mad than just the coverup. I knew enough to expect this kind of thing from military research, treating people as human guinea pigs. To see these insane experiments in action was quite a different experience than just knowing a little about the long sordid history.

The soldiers of the first Gulf war had three strikes against them. Exposure to fumes from chemical and biological weapons exploding nearby, experimental vaccines, and uranium dust in the air. One of the villains of the film is Bush himself, in his own voice as captured by the news media. Bush Sr., Rumsfeld, other government officials are also featured. A minor villain was the inventor of an engineered virus found in 40% of sick Gulf War veterans, who declined to be interviewed, as did other officials spearheading the coverup. The movie shows the patent held by the army for this virus. Many soldiers had their say about what happened to them. Soldiers are angry, some sick and contagious, only to be told their problems were typical post traumatic stress syndrome, all in their head. Birth defects, rare cancers and other disorders, all in their heads. The coverup means the vets are on their own with this syndrome, no help from Uncle Sam. Veterans who complain are accused of wanting money. It took how many years for Uncle to settle on Agent Orange vets, who got 2 billion spread over 3.5 million, no admission of responsibility. You do the math. It is beyond insulting. One soldier told about learning Gulf War vets are not allowed to donate blood. See the movie, you will see why that might be. Another told about her doctor telling her she should not even think about having a baby. About fourteen thousand chemical weapon alarms were triggered in the first Gulf War. The army jumped to declare them all equipment malfunctions! Later it had to admit some soldiers were exposed, but downplayed the numbers and health risks, comparing it to occupational levels of exposure considered safe. This despite the Defense Dept. knowing from its own studies the chemical protection suits issued to the soldiers would not protect them. This syndrome is no small problem. There may be twenty thousand soldiers dead from Gulf War Syndrome, hundreds of thousands sick, more every day from Gulf War II.

DU dust is the problem for the people of Iraq. The rate of birth defects and childhood cancers has skyrocketed. The movie has graphic pictures. Some material took months to smuggle out of Iraq. Footage of Fallujah, not just a war zone reduced to rubble, but radioactive to boot. Iraqis talking about our soldiers stealing greenbacks from the dead. Pictures of these so effective weapons taking out targets. Pictures of soldiers watching the old atmospheric bomb tests. DU is illegal under international law, dirty ammunition originally proposed by the Manhattan Project as a terrain contaminant, then becoming a staple of modern warfare because of the extreme density of DU, twice as dense as lead. First tested by Israel in 1973, it worked well, all too well. Hundreds of tons have been exploded in Iraq. Afghanistan and Yugoslavia got their share. DOD says to this day, DU is not a problem, no link to Gulf War Syndrome. Tell that to all the Iraqis watching their children die. Null has thousands of pictures of deformed children he could have put in the movie. It took 17 screenings to satisfy the demand at Cannes, unprecedented. Breaking from the pack is not unusual for Gary Null. He is best known as a cutting edge nutrition expert and researcher, here in his investigative journalist hat.

Update 9/12/2006: This story from CBS News:

Experts convened by the Institute of Medicine (IOM) said that their review of 850 studies shows it (Gulf War Syndrome) doesn’t exist.

While studies show that Gulf War veterans are at higher risk than nondeployed soldiers for a variety of illnesses, “the results of that research indicate that … there is not a unique symptom complex (or syndrome) in deployed Gulf War veterans,” the report stated.

Same old BS. Will these alleged scientists ever come clean?

Also, the movie is now available for sale at garynull.com.

An Inconvenient Truth August 2, 2006

Posted by angryscientist in Bad Science, Uncategorized.
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Big Business and politics thrive on ignoring such truths. Global warming is the subject of this sometimes silly, sometimes overtly political, sometimes persuasive movie. Understand I look at any such attempt by a politician with preconceived skepticism. For a politician I would say it was less politically theatrical than I expected, though Gore did leave it vulnerable to attacks for bits of political theater he included. I might have liked it more if I knew less about the subject matter, but this is one area I have investigated in some depth. It does make a graphic argument to show there is a real problem, and touches on options to lower carbon dioxide emissions. For anyone on the fence on this issue, it might scare some sense into you.

Are Mad Scientists Wrecking the World? August 2, 2006

Posted by angryscientist in Bad Science, Uncategorized.
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Science has so much potential, it is such a shame what it has come to. Man’s penchant for death machinery may have made much of this mess inevitable, but science is grievously misused both for military and profiteering purposes. Men need to get through their thick skulls that nature is not theirs to conquer, that trying to conquer nature is as impossible, foolhardy, and bound to backfire as trying to conquer a lover, or terrorism.

 Of course when profit or killing efficiencies are the bottom line, who cares about any of that? Men can have very thick skulls when it benefits them. Scientists are by no means immune to this corruption. So arise such phenomenal boondoggles as radioactive materials routinely used for weaponry, energy, and smoke detectors; engineering DNA for profit; residues of hundreds of synthetic toxic or hormone-disrupting chemical compounds in placental blood and breast milk; pathologizing women medically and psychologically; factory farms profiting at the expense of food value and environmental quality; accelerating puberty; giving children stimulants to help them behave like proper robots; corporate power; playing havoc with air, water, and soil quality, the ozone layer, biodiversity, and the climate; I could go on, but that is enough for now. 

The point being, this is bad science, some is mad science, science corrupted in the service of big money, ignoring likely consequences. I think these scientists are bought and paid for, and know somewhere in the back of their thick skulls what hell they are wreaking, but they cannot afford to care if they want to keep their cushy jobs. They may think I cannot know of what I speak, but I think I know enough about these issues to make such statements with confidence I can defend my position. I blow the whistle on all of this bad science, getting away with slow murder to feather their pockets. I have been intimidated into silence too long. I am now angry enough to take the risk of publishing my protests to www.

 To Be Continued