HIV/AIDS Skepticism

Pointing to evidence that HIV is not the necessary and sufficient cause of AIDS

Archive for November, 2013

Beware official reports: WHO “informing” about HIV in Greece

Posted by Henry Bauer on 2013/11/26

A cousin had sent me this link:

“Report: Half of new HIV cases in Greece from 2009-2011 self-inflicted to get benefits”
“A case study contained within a lengthy World Health Organization report reviewing the health inequities among European countries said Greeks may be contracting HIV intentionally in order to go on public assistance.
According to the ‘case study’ contained in the report ‘Review of social determinants and the health divide in the WHO European Region: final report,’ while suicides, homicide, and thefts increased during the Greek economic crisis, so too did the rate of HIV infection — about half of which the report says were likely self-inflicted to obtain benefits.
. . . .
‘HIV rates and heroin use have risen significantly, with about half of new HIV infections being self-inflicted to enable people to receive benefits of €700 per month and faster admission on to drug substitution programs’.”

Knowing better than to accept such second-hand accounts, I went to the WHO report itself, readily available by Googling its title. Sure enough, on p. 157:
“HIV rates and heroin use have risen significantly, with about half of new HIV infections being self-inflicted to enable people to receive benefits of €700 per month and faster admission on to drug- substitution programmes”.
But there was no source cited for this statement, even though the WHO Report boasts a total of 782 references. The references (609-611) closest to this statement did not mention the allegation.
So I started to compose this blog post.

But when I returned to the Daily Caller source to quote from it, it had been updated:
“WHO recognizes that there is no evidence suggesting that deliberate self-infection with HIV goes beyond a few anecdotal cases . . .
Media Matters notes  that the WHO’s analysis on the rate of self-inflicted HIV is likely a misrepresentation of a report on Greece that appeared in The Lancet . . . noting the possibility for ‘a few’ people to self-inflicted [sic] HIV as a way to obtain benefits.”

Indeed, the Lancet report (378 [2013] 1457-8) says, “Many new HIV infections are also linked to an increase in prostitution (and associated unsafe sex).22 An authoritative report described accounts of deliberate self-infection by a few individuals to obtain access to benefits of €700 per month and faster admission onto drug substitution programmes.22”
That reference 22 contains (p. 4) this statement:
“8. An additional factor the committee believed worth considering is the well-founded
suspicion that some problem users are intentionally infected with HIV, because of
the benefit they are entitled to (approximately € 1,400 every two months), and
also because they are granted “exceptional admission” to the Substitution
Programme. It is well-known that the Substitution Programme has a long waiting list
and that the waiting time can be over 3-4 years. Drug users with a severe chronic
condition jump the queue and are admitted in a short period of time” [emphasis in the original].

The WHO Report actually cites this Lancet article, as reference 32, in an entirely different connection. Since it was cited, it had presumably been read by someone who had a hand in drafting the WHO Report.

Many things are wrong with the way this and other official reports are generated. Many people have something to do with them — far too many people. An official report is what happens when typically unidentified staffers convert a request from on high into a document that has to meet the purposes of propaganda in support of corporate agendas and corporate self-aggrandizement. The raison d’être of a report from WHO, UNESCO, the International Panel on Climate Change, the International Monetary Fund, etc., etc., etc., is not the dissemination of useful information, it is bureaucratic self-promotion and the providing of paid employment to a host of personnel and contractors. For a lengthier disquisition together with analyses of Reports from the World Bank, UNAIDS, and the Centers for Disease Control & Prevention, see chapter 8 in Dogmatism in Science and Medicine.
In the present instance, a “well-founded suspicion” that some drug addicts deliberately self-inflict with HIV became, in the WHO Report, the unequivocal statement that “about half of new HIV infections . . . [are] self-inflicted”.

WHO did issue a correction:
“In fact, what is accurate to say is that slightly more than half of the Greece’s new HIV cases are among those who inject drugs. WHO recognizes that there is no evidence suggesting that deliberate self-infection with HIV goes beyond a few anecdotal cases. The statement is the consequence of an error in the editing of the report, for which WHO apologizes.”

But this is nothing like an adequate response.
The apology is worth nothing because it accomplishes nothing, it doesn’t affect what remains in the Report. Will all copies of that Report be recalled and destroyed and a new version substituted?
Furthermore, it is obviously incorrect to blame an editing error for a statement that should never have been there in the first place. The correct information was in an article actually cited in another place in the WHO Report. To blame is the whole process by which this Report came into existence.
Among other things, that ludicrously, obviously wrong statement should have been caught by anyone who has even the most elementary and limited knowledge of the actual facts about HIV. For example, that drug addicts who share needles are less likely to become “HIV-positive” than those who don’t share needles (references at p. 86 in The Origin, Persistence and Failings of HIV/AIDS Theory); and that “HIV” is “distinctively difficult to transmit” (p. 131 in Robert Gallo, Virus hunting: AIDS, cancer, and the human retrovirus: a story of scientific discovery, Basic Books, 1991) — typically cited rates of transmission are on the order of a few per thousand acts of unprotected sex. So even if drug addicts want to contract “HIV”, it would be no easy matter for them to do so by sharing needles or practicing “unsafe sex”. On the other hand, they could always increase their chance of testing “HIV-positive” just by using drugs more intensively, because the drugs themselves can produce a positive result on “HIV” tests, as well as the illnesses that are said to characterize “AIDS”.

Posted in experts, HIV absurdities, HIV risk groups, HIV skepticism, HIV transmission, HIV/AIDS numbers | Tagged: , , | Leave a Comment »

Those who don’t remember their history…..

Posted by Henry Bauer on 2013/11/04

Those who don’t remember their history apparently includes individuals like Michel Kazatchkine, U.N. Special Envoy for HIV/AIDS in Eastern Europe, cited in the Reuters story, “ Could concentrated HIV epidemics make AIDS unbeatable?”

“ HIV epidemics are becoming more concentrated in marginalized groups such as sex workers, drug users and gay men. . . . a U.N. expert said” .

Words fail me when these official expert envoys, and prominent news organizations, have apparently forgotten that “AIDS” and testing HIV+ was always concentrated among drug users and gay men; and among gay men, concentrated among those who abuse drugs; and among sex workers, concentrated among those who abuse drugs.

“ In MSM populations, there is no sign it has decreased,” he said. “ It has either been a stable number of new infections every year for 10 years, or it is an increasing trend. And this, in western Europe at least, is in the context of basically free and easy access to therapy and services.”

Exactly. Maybe there’s something wrong with the mainstream approach?

Posted in experts, HIV absurdities, HIV risk groups, HIV/AIDS numbers, uncritical media | Tagged: , , | Leave a Comment »

Arguing with HIV/AIDS believers

Posted by Henry Bauer on 2013/11/03

To help others realize that HIV doesn’t cause AIDS is the same sort of task that teachers face.

Little experience of teaching is needed to learn that what works with one student may not work with another. Every individual has a unique background, upbringing, level of general knowledge, ability to think critically, willingness or otherwise to accept authority, capacity to re-examine beliefs, degree of proneness to cognitive dissonance . . . .
Therefore there is no single approach that best helps everyone to learn, and similarly there is no single approach that best serves to re-educate HIV/AIDS believers and help them realize the error of their belief.

Some people, especially those with a scientific background, tend to imagine that drawing attention to the facts is all that’s needed. Numerous books and other material produced over several decades testify to the actual fact that the evidence alone doesn’t do the job.
One major barrier to surmount is the widespread belief that “Science” is absolutely trustworthy and that official representatives of Science and Medicine know the truth and want only to disseminate it. Breaching that barrier calls for a fairly comprehensive education about the history and sociology of science and medicine, demonstrating that they are human activities with all the fallibility that comes with that: much error along the way of apparent progress, periodic “revolutions” in which pre-existing beliefs are turned upside down, consistent official, apparently authoritative resistance to new ideas, some of which later turn out to become generally accepted.

Because different approaches best serve the needs of different misguided believers, I thought it would be useful to have a concise summary of the innumerable reasons why HIV/AIDS theory is wrong, and that led me to put together The Case Against HIV,  which illustrates how much ground has to be covered:
1. HIV does not cause AIDS.
2. The plain evidence about AIDS.
3. The plain evidence about HIV.
4. Failings of HIV/AIDS theory.
5. What antiretroviral drugs do.
6. Damage done by HIV/AIDS theory and practice.
7. Hindrances to making the case against HIV.
8. How could such a massive blunder come about and persist?
9. FAQs: Questions — sometimes rhetorical only — posed by adherents to HIV/AIDS theory.

I’ve been involved, at first hand and at second- and even third-hand, in dialogues where defenders of HIV/AIDS theory keep coming up with isolated references or statements as purportedly argument-ending coups. For example, concerning my blog posts mentioning that pure “HIV” virions have never been isolated from an AIDS patient or an “HIV+” individual, I’ve been cited the availability of “isolates of HIV” from a government repository, or an article with electron micrographs of material from a culture, and more.
My experience is that nothing can be gained by entering into to-and-fro on such terms. The HIV/AIDS literature is so vast that one can find in it just about anything — albeit not so much that is competent, reliable, reproducible, and above all relevant to the only important question: Does “HIV”, an exogenous infectious immune-system-killing retrovirus, cause fatal illness?

I suggest that one insist to proponents of HIV/AIDS orthodoxy who attempt to debunk HIV skepticism and AIDS Rethinking that the discussion be clearly relevant to the main issue.
The first point might well concern onus of proof: What is the evidence for the HIV/AIDS hypothesis?
That should bring the discussion to a rather rapid close. Or rather, it will divert it to the question, can authorities or a mainstream consensus be believed without further ado? The answer to that is an obvious “No”, but most HIV/AIDS groupies need quite a bit of educating to become aware of that.
Plan B might be to ask, “How did you come to believe that HIV causes AIDS?”
That too is likely to divert to argument over reliance on authority and consensus.

I don’t really expect that this strategy would be effective in a large proportion of cases, but I think it is potentially superior to attempting to argue technical intricacies which the two sides both typically don’t understand as they argue by citing opposing authorities and cherry-picking the literature.

Just how difficult it is to bring the average person to even question HIV/AIDS dogma may be illustrated by how difficult it was for me — see “Confession of an “AIDS Denialist”: How I became a crank because we’re being lied to about HIV/AIDS”. I had read enough — many of the books listed at the old Virusmyth website  — to become open to the possibility, but it took my own digging into “HIV” epidemiology to convince me (see in particular p. 7 and chapter 1 in The Origin, Persistence and Failings of HIV/AIDS Theory).
That was about 10 years after I first became aware that there exist dissidents from orthodox HIV/AIDS belief. And it has taken me further years to understand that “HIV” may not even exist, and that “HIV” tests are perhaps the central issue in the whole business.
My long-standing interest in Loch Ness Monsters and all sorts of other offbeat matters testifies that I am significantly more open to unorthodox views than most people are, so my own difficulty in recognizing the errors of HIV/AIDS theory might serve as a warning that the task of bringing others to that understanding is an extraordinarily difficult one.

I should add that arguing with HIV/AIDS proponents, even as it is unlikely to bring them to change their belief, can be valuable in forcing us to learn more. When I first started this blog, comments and queries from HIV/AIDS groupies led me to much useful further study and analysis, so that I was able to discover that the so-called “latent period” does not exist, and that mortality rates demonstrate that the HIV/AIDS hypothesis is wrong, and that “HIV” tests aren’t, and more.

 

Posted in experts, HIV does not cause AIDS, HIV skepticism, HIV tests, prejudice, uncritical media | Tagged: | 3 Comments »

More good stuff from Italy

Posted by Henry Bauer on 2013/11/02

I’ve recommended the Science and Democracy conferences and website  before — “Italy, a new Renaissance, and the need for slower science” (2011/07/12) and “SELENIUM: Mainstreamers again follow rethinkers as to dietary supplements” (2008/07/14).

Their third collection of essays has now been published: Science and the Citizen: Contemporary Issues and Controversies, ed. Marco Mamone Capria, lulu.com, 2013, $25.99 (ISBN 978-1291446838); also available from amazon.com.
Of particular interest concerning HIV/AIDS is David Rasnick’s “AIDS drugs cause AIDS and death”, which contains striking documented facts, for example that even properly prescribed drugs kill 100,000 a year in the USA — and that did not consider the deaths and damages done by antiretroviral drugs. Rasnick surveys the toxicity of antiretrovirals, and provides a much-needed discussion of Immune Reconstitution Syndrome (IRS) or Immune Reconstitution Inflammatory Syndrome (IRIS) or Immune Reconstitution Disease (IRD) which had been invented to explain why AIDS patients became more ill rather than less after taking antiretroviral drugs: supposedly the immune system in reconstituting itself causes toxic inflammation through hyperactivity.

I had been aware that IRS/IRIS/IRD is a self-serving paradox, a colleague of ICL, Idiopathic CD4-T-cell Lymphopenia, a.k.a. HIV-negative AIDS, invented to protect the status of HIV as cause of AIDS. But I had not done any further reading about IRS/IRIS/IRD, so Rasnick’s article is an eye-opener. He cites 14 articles reporting the incidence of IRS in between 4 and 66% of patients receiving antiretroviral drugs, with a crudely calculated (by me) average of 28%: thus more than a quarter of people give antiretroviral treatment suffer life-threatening reactions.

My subsequent search at PubMed for more information delivered 2715 citations for Immune Reconstitution Disease, 1470 for Immune Reconstitution Syndrome, 1010 for Immune Reconstitution Inflammatory Syndrome, and 550 for Immune Reconstitution Inflammatory Disease.
On the other hand, the NIH Treatment Guidelines make no big deal about IRIS, mentioning it only as a possible outcome when patients with certain opportunistic infections receive antiretroviral treatment.

———————————————————–

Rasnick’s article is one of five in the book’s section titled “Corporate Medicine”; the other articles are “Medicine and democracy”, “Evidence-based medicine? Wishful thinking”, “The bigger the lie — the Wakefield case”, and “Ethics, surgeons, and transplantation”.

Other sections of the book are:
Brave new science and its discontents
Experts and participatory democracy
Public opinions, official lies, and whistleblowers

and there is a concluding essay by Anthony Liversidge which describes the ambience of these Science and Democracy conferences.

There is much in this book to interest anyone who is at all skeptical about what mainstream sources and mass media promulgate.

Posted in antiretroviral drugs, HIV does not cause AIDS, HIV skepticism, HIV/AIDS numbers | Tagged: , | 2 Comments »