HIV/AIDS Skepticism

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

Posts Tagged ‘HIV and age’


Posted by Henry Bauer on 2008/03/08

I had described Tony Lance’s article on intestinal dysbiosis as “slicing through the Gordian knot” [20 February 2008] because it offers coherent and plausible answers to the most vexing specific mysteries about “AIDS”. It appeared around 1980 among gay men in a few large cities: Why then? Why there? Why in the form of those particular diseases—KS, PCP, candidiasis? In addition, Lance’s explanation offers a satisfactory resolution to what has been a salient conundrum for HIV/AIDS dissidents: Why does antiretroviral treatment sometimes bring tangible, almost immediate health benefits?

Some of the responses to Tony’s article have brought home to me the need to put this keystone solution into perspective, because “HIV/AIDS” nowadays encompasses such an enormous range of disparate things. It’s an exceedingly complicated mess, with many threads needing to be unraveled even after the central knot has been sliced.

To begin with, one must recognize that

1. “HIV” and “AIDS” are distinctly separate things.
2. Neither “HIV” nor “AIDS” is definitively defined by universally agreed, substantive and objective criteria.
3. That second point is illustrated by the way in which the definitions of “HIV” and of “AIDS” have been changed or augmented over time.
4. To muddy the waters even further, in some circumstances—but not in others—there is an indirect correlation between some claimed measures of “HIV” and the claimed incidence of some forms of “AIDS”.


1. “HIV” and “AIDS” are two separate things

Chapter 9 in The Origin, Persistence and Failings of HIV/AIDS Theory summarizes the many facts which show that “HIV” and “AIDS” are not correlated:
— “HIV”-negative AIDS cases
— “HIV”-positive people who never come down with an “AIDS-defining” illness
— male-to-female ratios for “AIDS” and for “HIV” are quite different; and the difference has changed over the years
— black-to-white ratios for “AIDS” and for “HIV” are quite different; and the difference has changed over the years
— the overall incidence and prevalence of “AIDS” and of “HIV” have changed quite differently over the years
— the geographic distributions of “AIDS” and of “HIV” are not the same

2 & 3. “HIV” and “AIDS” have not been defined definitively; definitions have changed over time

“AIDS”, when first recognized as a distinct entity, was defined as an immunedeficiency marked by rare opportunistic infections and having no obvious cause (i.e., no cancer, malnutrition, or other condition known to suppress immune function).
After the claimed discovery of “HIV” as its cause, “AIDS” was re-defined to require a positive “HIV”-test. That made it necessary, some years later, to invent the new phenomenon of idiopathic CD4-T-cell lymphopenia—pathogenic immunedeficiency without obvious cause—to describe cases where the clinical diagnosis would have been “AIDS” except that “HIV”-tests were negative.
The inclusion of hemophiliacs under “AIDS” broke the initial definition of immunedeficiency for no known reason.
Further re-definitions over the years added to the list of “AIDS-defining” conditions a number of illnesses where patients often tested “HIV”-positive. This had such bizarre consequences as including tuberculosis as AIDS-defining just because TB patients often test positive for “HIV”, and including cervical cancer as “AIDS-defining” even though its incidence had been declining steadily throughout the period during which “HIV” and “AIDS” were supposedly spreading.
Then the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention decided that “HIV”-positive people with CD4-cell counts of less than 200 in the blood were to be classed as “having AIDS” even when they displayed and felt no symptoms of ill health. That criterion has not been accepted in certain other countries, however, with the result that some “AIDS” patients from the USA may cross the border into Canada and no longer have AIDS; indeed, in 1993 fully half of all newly diagnosed AIDS patients in the United States, more than 20,000 of them, could have been cured just by crossing the border.

“HIV” is variously defined as what is detected by antibody tests (ELISA or Western Blot) or by PCR detection of genetic material. ELISA and Western Blot do not always agree over whether a given sample is “positive”. The criteria for whether a Western Blot is positive are not the same in different countries nor in different laboratories. Counts of immune-system cells (CD4+) and of “viral load” (supposed amount of virus) do not correlate with one another.
Dissidents know, on the basis of any amount of documented evidence, that “HIV” tests are not specific: they react positive under many physiological conditions, and they have never been validated against pure virus, because no pure virus has ever been isolated direct from an “HIV”-positive individual.
Nevertheless, countless published articles have described “HIV” in extraordinary detail of genetic sequence and physical structure—all postulated on the basis of highly indirect inferences, since, to repeat, no single authentic particle of the virus has ever been obtained from an “AIDS” patient. All the so-called “viral isolates” stem from work with cultures; and even those are revealed by electron microscopy as motley mixtures of bits and pieces of various sizes and shapes.
An empirical and natural way of defining “HIV” is: “what HIV tests have been held to detect”. Under that view, published data from tens of millions of “HIV” tests in the United States show that “HIV” is not a sexually transmitted agent, indeed is not an infection at all, because it has been present at about the same level and in the same geographic distribution for more than two decades. The manner in which “HIV” depends on age, sex, and race indicates that it is a very non-specific physiological response to some sort of stress or health challenge. In other words, HIV/AIDS theory contradicts itself; the evidence gained by applying HIV/AIDS theory is incompatible with the theory.

4. Occasional correlations between “HIV” and “AIDS”

What makes things so exceedingly complicated and messy is that even though “HIV” and “AIDS” are not correlated in general and certainly not inevitably, as they would have to be if one were the cause of the other, there are circumstances where there is an indirect or apparent correlation between them.
Since “HIV” tests often react quite non-specifically to health stresses, people test “HIV”-positive when palpably unwell from any one of a large variety of causes; for example, “HIV”-positive rates are relatively high in hospital patients, especially those seen in emergency rooms, and among people whose deaths were such as to call for autopsies. Consequently, “HIV”-positive rates do show some sort of correlation with degree of illness in the so-called high-risk groups: drug abusers, hemophiliacs, and gay men, and this happenstance lends some apparent yet misleading support to the mainstream view.
Not acknowledged by the mainstream, but evident from mountains of data, is the fact that TB patients are another group at high risk of testing “HIV”-positive, and of course at high risk of dying as well.
Hemophiliacs suffer from a chronic, life-threatening disorder. No other explanation is required for why they test “HIV”-positive at high rates and why that sometimes appears to correlate with the severity of their illness.
Drug abusers are unhealthy or ill to varying degrees, depending on the types and amounts of drugs consumed. Addicts test “HIV”-positive because that is a response to physiological stress, and there is a consequent correlation between the degree of that drug-induced stress, that is the severity of the drug-induced ill-health, and the tendency to test “HIV”-positive. The observation that reformed drug addicts are less prone to test “HIV”-positive, in proportion to how long they have been clean, underscores that testing “HIV”-positive is in these cases an indicator of the degree of health stress, and as such it is reversible, just like a fever.
Lance’s intestinal dysbiosis article explains convincingly why gay men often test “HIV”-positive, and why that is associated with the whole spectrum of health and illness, so that there is often a correlation between the severity of the dysbiosis, the probability of testing “HIV”-positive, and the likelihood of developing “AIDS”. The intestinal-dysbiosis hypothesis also affords an explanation for the fact that the most severely ill gay men, those who experience full-blown AIDS, tend to be older rather than younger, in their thirties or forties rather than—as would be expected with a sexually transmitted disease—in their teens or twenties. Figure 10 in The Origin, Persistence and Failings of HIV/AIDS Theory shows “HIV”-positive rates among gay men aged more than 25 as higher than among younger gay men. Michelle Cochrane’s re-examination of medical records of early AIDS cases in San Francisco found that their average age was in the mid- to late thirties. The average age of the first 5 victims in Los Angeles was 31. The first 159 AIDS patients identified by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention had an average age of 35 (pp. 187-8 in The Origin, Persistence and Failings of HIV/AIDS Theory).
Quite recently I came across yet more evidence of this correlation. A British study of “HIV”-positive gay men found that the average age of those who had no symptoms of illness was 32.4 years; those who had swollen lymph glands or other signs of what used to be called “AIDS-related complex” had an average age of 34.8; those with full-blown AIDS averaged 43.3 years of age (Batman et al., Journal of Clinical Pathology, 42 [1989] 275-81). This is precisely what the dysbiosis theory would predict: the longer one continues doing whatever causes the dysbiosis, the more likely one is to become ill.
In the same vein, a longitudinal study of gay men found that the average age of seroconverting (becoming “HIV”-positive) was 35.3 (Page-Shafer et al., American Journal of Epidemiology, 146 [1997] 531-42).
“Why are so many mid-life gay men getting HIV?”, asked Spencer Cox and Bruce Kellerhouse on GayCityNews© (15 March 2007). That’s a real conundrum under HIV/AIDS theory, but it is to be expected under intestinal-dysbiosis theory. A comment to that piece added anecdotal evidence: “… I was in my 20s and early 30s back in the 1980s and early 1990s. Although there were certainly men my age who were infected, most of the men I knew who succumbed to the epidemic in those years were 10-15 years older than I was. Most of my gay male friends in their 20s-30s were HIV negative and have remained so. I’ve spoken to several other men my age who have seroconverted later in life, and none of us lost close friends in the epidemic. But we did feel that we missed out on the ‘wild’ sex and drugs of the late 70s and early 80’s” (Jay, San Francisco, CA, Added: Tuesday March 20, 2007 at 05:47 PM EST). PLEASE NOTE APOLOGY: This quote had been incorrectly attributed to someone else up until 6 March 2009 when the error was pointed out to me.


In sum: Tony Lance’s discussion solves the main puzzles about “HIV” and “AIDS” insofar as they affect gay men, including why they have affected only a small subset of gay men. These insights are also applicable to a variety of other circumstances where disturbances of the intestinal flora have come about for one reason or another in heterosexual men and in women.
But “HIV” and “AIDS” nowadays are so different from their original connotations that many of the observations can only be explained by taking into account the continual changes in definition of both, which has enmeshed the topic of “HIV/AIDS” in a host of complications and contradictions .

Posted in HIV as stress, HIV does not cause AIDS, HIV risk groups, HIV skepticism, HIV tests, HIV varies with age | Tagged: , , , , , , , | 4 Comments »


Posted by Henry Bauer on 2008/02/26

The rates at which people in the United States test HIV-positive have remained at about the same level, and have remained distributed geographically in the same manner, for two decades. The rates also vary with age, sex, and race in the same manner in all social groups. Those demographics are characteristic of something endemic, not of something contagious that causes epidemics; thus “HIV” is not something that’s sexually transmitted (see also WHAT “HIV” IS NOT: IT’S NOT SEXUALLY TRANSMITTED, 6 January 2008).

That demographics-based argument, detailed in The Origins, Persistence and Failings of HIV/AIDS Theory (McFarland 2007), is strongly confirmed by finding similar demographic characteristics in Africa as in the United States.


Consider how testing HIV-positive varies with age and sex:


Sexually transmitted diseases tend to strike adolescents and young adults more than others; by contrast, rates of HIV-positive are highest in newborns and in middle-aged people.

Resistance to infections and illnesses is greatest among adults in the prime and middle years of life; old people are at particular risk for flu, pneumonia, etc. The very opposite applies with HIV: the risk of testing HIV-positive is greatest in middle age.

The above diagram describes general trends. As noted in the source (The Origins, Persistence and Failings of HIV/AIDS Theory, there are some variations: “The only major variation between groups is in the precise ‘middle’ age at which F(HIV) peaks, anywhere from 30s to 50s; and that precise age is not always the same for males and females. . . . There are also hints . . . that the peak ages and the male-to-female ratios may be somewhat different in the various racial categories” (pp. 26-7); “black women test positive relatively frequently under some sort of not-necessarily-serious physiological stress, such as pregnancy or childbirth” (p. 247).

Those very same trends can be seen in the Demographic and Health Survey for Rwanda (2005 edition, published July 2006; available at



The data from the United States contained hints that black women are particularly prone to test HIV-positive; the Rwanda data confirm that strongly—women there test HIV-positive more often than men up to age 40, whereas in the United States women test positive more often than men only up to the later teens.

Then there’s the variation with marital status (from Table 15.6, Rwanda Demographic and Health Survey, 2005):


As earlier remarked (TO AVOID HIV INFECTION, DON’T GET MARRIED, 18 November 2007), this illustrates the usual variation with age: the widowed are likely to be on average older than the divorced, who are likely to be on average older than those currently married or in a stable relationship, who are likely to be older than those who never had sex. Note, too, that 2 per 1000 men, and 8 per 1000 women, have contracted this supposed STD without ever having had sex.

Yet another confirmation of this variation of HIV-positive with age is reported by Brewer et al., Annals of Epidemiology, 17 (2007) 217-26. The following rates of testing HIV-positive (as percentages) are extracted from their Table 5:


All show the increase with age from teens into “middle age” (which is in the 30s except with Tanzanian males and uncircumcised Kenyan males). Only 1 cell out of 32 (18-24-year-old circumcised Kenyan males) does not fit the pattern, a remarkably consistent, reproducible result for such a demographic variable.

In the Kenya data, note that uncircumcised females test positive more often than males only up to the late teens, which is more like the US data than the Rwandan; whereas in the circumcised group, females test positive more often than males into the thirties, which is more like the Rwandan data than the US data.

Note too how irreproducible is the variation of HIV-positive rate with circumcision status; in 6 cases, circumcised corresponds to a greater HIV-positive rate, in the other 10 cases it is the opposite.


Among the surprises in the US demographic data was the consistent increase of HIV-positive rates with increasing population density (which is again not characteristic of sexually transmitted diseases). Such a correlation is, however, consistent with an explanation of HIV-positive as a non-specific physiological response to a variety of minor and major insults such as environmental pollution (see p. 89 in The Origins, Persistence and Failings of HIV/AIDS Theory).

Remarkably, the same trend with population density is found in Rwanda:
“in 1986 . . . [rates of HIV-positive] were 17.8 percent in urban areas and 1.3 percent in rural areas. . . . In . . . 1991 . . . 27 percent in urban areas, 8.5 percent in semi-urban areas, and 2.2 percent in rural areas. . . . in 1996 . . . 27 percent among urban residents, 13 percent among semi-urban residents, and 6.9 percent among rural residents”; in 2002, 7.0-8.5% in urban areas and 2.6-3.6% in rural areas; in 2003, 6.9-8.3% urban, 2.7-3.6% rural.

The overall rates in 2005 were reported as 2.6 rural and 8.6 urban for women, and 1.6 rural and 5.8 urban for women. This makes the urban-to-rural ratio 3.3 for women and 3.6 for men, so similar that it speaks against any interpretation in terms of different sexual behavior by men and women. Moreover, these ratios are uncannily similar to the approximate ratio of 4 found in the United States (p. 67 in The Origins, Persistence and Failings of HIV/AIDS Theory).


I didn’t come across reports in the United States for how HIV-positive rates vary with religion, but the Rwanda report does include this information:


HIV/AIDS dogma explains rates of testing HIV-positive by sexual and drug-abusing behavior. That provides a dubious basis, to say the least, for understanding how these rates vary with religious affiliation in Rwanda: are we to infer that Muslim women are particularly prone to unsafe promiscuity or drug injecting, while Muslim men are least likely to indulge?

Under the alternative explanation of what HIV-positive means, however—namely, non-specific physiological stress* —, this wouldn’t be at all puzzling if the proportion of Muslim women who are black—of Negroid racial type—is greater than in the other religious groups, since black women are particularly prone to test HIV-positive.
[* see posts of 12 & 25 November 2007, 22 & 29 December, 4, 7, 8 & 12 January 2008]


It’s often said that scientific theories can be disproved by data that contradict them whereas theories are confirmed when they make successful predictions. Sexually transmitted diseases do not infect middle-aged people more than others in all social groups on disparate continents.
HIV/AIDS theory is disproved because “HIV” is not sexually transmitted.

The theory that HIV-positive reflects a non-specific physiological response was based (in part) on demographic data for the United States, see The Origins, Persistence and Failings of HIV/AIDS Theory. The trends published there and taken as universal constitute effectively predictions that the same trends as to age, sex, and population density would be found elsewhere. They have been found in Africa. The theory is thereby confirmed.

Posted in HIV and race, HIV as stress, HIV transmission, HIV varies with age, M/F ratios, sexual transmission | Tagged: , , , | 7 Comments »