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Hairdressers Unite for World AIDS Day

December 1st, 2010

Cindi Lauper joins 500 hairdressers in promoting scientific error to increasingly inattentive world

Influence of HIV-AIDS whistle blowers negligible after 23 years, as mainstream cheer leading expands to campuses

Money tap turned tighter, promising some relief for Africa from misdirected and revolting AIDS drugs

Cyndi Lauper is now the new pin up girl for HIV-AIDS victims, helping spread the word to attract funding so that they can take purposeless and dangerous drugs which will eventually kill them, according to HIV-AIDS critics.Global AIDS propaganda reaches its annual climax today, and the ever enlarging circle of scientific authorities on this somewhat tasteless subject who are helping to make it palatable has expanded to 500 hairdressers besieging the United Nations, and pop icon “Girls Wanna Have Fun” Cindi Lauper, no less.

World AIDS Day 2010: 500 Hairdressers Unite Against AIDS by Grace Gold

Over 500 hair stylists have invaded the United Nations for a cause far more urgent than just your typical bad hair day intervention.

Today kicks off the United States launch of Hairdressers Against AIDS, a joint venture between L’Oréal and the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), which urges stylists to use the often intimate, tell-all relationships they have with clients as a jumping point to educate them about AIDS prevention, testing and available treatment resources.

“The longest relationship I’ve ever had with a man has been with my hair stylist, Garren,” said Allure Editor in Chief Linda Wells, to the laughs and knowing smiles of the room filled with hairdressers who had flown in from all parts of the country to support the cause.

It’s that uniquely special and loyal relationship that often deepens over years that allows hairdressers in particular to be very effective advocates, as they can gab details surrounding sexual activity that most women won’t even share with loved ones and partners.

“Today, information is the only vaccine against HIV,” said John Tedstrom, President and CEO of the Global Business Coalition on HIV/AIDS, TB and Malaria.

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L’Oréal higher-ups, government officials and AIDS educators who addressed the crowd emphasized that blasting through the stigma surrounding HIV and creating an open atmosphere for discussion could actually save clients’ lives.

Hairdressers are the new activists in HIV-AIDS, since after all there are few closer friendships between women and men that between them and their hairdressers, and women are the new target of HIV-AIDS defenders. The 500 stylists will brave downpour and windy conditions to descend upon Times Square, with a goal of creating one million conversations about HIV and AIDS with New Yorkers. The effort aims to spread awareness and curb the spread of death and disease in order to honor World AIDS Day.

Celebrity stylists like Ted Gibson, Jason Backe, Tracey Cunningham and Jet Rhys will be on hand to pound the pavement for the long day of aggressive volunteer work.

“AIDS isn’t talked about because women don’t want to feel tainted or associated with disease, it can seem dirty. But we have to spark the conversation — it can save lives. And listening to the speakers made me realize that I need to talk to my own two teenage boys about it,” Rhys told StyleList.

And the HIV positive Regan Hofmann — whose long flowing blonde locks and Ivy-league upper class upbringing seems to fly in the face of the stereotypical AIDS patient — said it was also her hairstylist who was the first to comfort her in the shocking aftermath of her fatal diagnosis.

“I was scared my hairdresser wouldn’t want to touch my hair again. But after sitting down for a shampoo and feeling him run his fingers through my hair, I felt safe and comforted in a way I wasn’t able to before,” said the Editor In Chief of POZ Magazine.

And speaking of hair, check out how platinum blonde icon Cyndi Lauper is honoring World AIDS Day in her own very colorful way.

Here’s what they refer to:

Cyndi Lauper Talks AIDS Awareness, M.A.C Viva Glam Lipstick and Her Favorite Hair Color of All Time>

Cyndi Lauper gives back for World AIDS Day. Photo: Charles Eshelman/
Girls may wanna have fun, but they can change the world, too.

To honor World AIDS Day, Grammy Award-winning songstress and M.A.C Viva Glam spokesmodel Cyndi Lauper lent a helping hand at God’s Love We Deliver, a nonprofit that serves nutritious meals to people in New York and New Jersey who are suffering from serious illnesses like AIDS.

And in M.A.C’s most successful Viva Glam campaign ever, Lauper has campaigned alongside Lady Gaga to sell the $14.50 pop of coral lipstick. All funds are donated to the M.A.C AIDS Fund, which supports programs for AIDS patients, who often struggle with the poverty, pain and shame the disease can leave in its wake.

As of today, the campaign has raised $32 million in the over 74 countries in which the lipstick is sold, with retail partners like Nordstrom and Macy’s forgoing their usual cut in favor of donating the product’s full retail value to the fund.

“The biggest misconception people have about AIDS is they think they won’t get it,” a brilliantly platinum-blond Lauper tells StyleList, from the back kitchen at the God’s Love We Deliver home station in Soho, New York.

“I’ve had friends who have had it, and that’s why I campaign. People need the awareness. They need to realize that AIDS is 100 percent preventable, but 0 percent curable. And it’s not an easy life. If the disease don’t get you, the medicine will,” adds Lauper, shaking her head.

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The rate of new infections has increased in recent years, and AIDS is now the leading cause of death for African-American women between the ages of 18 and 34, according to MAC AIDS Fund Executive Director Nancy Mahon.

Cyndi joins "Gods Love We Deliver" in bringing joy and vital information about HIV-AIDS as she understands it to HIV positive persons.“Factors like domestic violence, financial dependence and lack of self-esteem lead many women to not protect themselves against HIV,” says Mahon. “The beauty of using rock stars like Cyndi Lauper and Lady Gaga is that women of all ages listen to stars in a way they won’t listen to the surgeon general.”

While the sexy campaign photos show Lauper and Gaga clad in lingerie and smoky eyes peppered with hot-colored lips, Lauper says gifting the girly tube to an important woman in your life is the also the perfect time to remind her about AIDS prevention.

“Tell them, ‘Have fun, it’s a great color, make yourself pretty, enjoy your life — but be safe, because you’re valuable to me.’ Give it to your sister. Give it to your mother — yes, tell your mother about AIDS. There’s a high rate of infection among women in my age bracket, 39 to 60, because they don’t think they can get it. AIDS doesn’t discriminate,” says the 57-year-old singer.

Lauper says the conversation is even more important to have with your kids — which she has done with her own 13-year-old son, Declyn, by her husband of nearly 20 years, David Thornton.

“I tell my son, ‘You’re gonna have fun when you get older — safe sex. Anybody can get it. Don’t think you’re immune, no one is.'”

And while we had the ’80s icon, who was workin’ a red God’s Love We Deliver tee under a sheer body-hugging black lace suit, we couldn’t help but ask about her most distinctive feature — that constantly changing head of hair.

We wanted to know: What color of the literally hundreds she has worn over her life has felt the most authentically like Cyndi?

“You know, I loved that canary-yellow color I wore in 1994,” said Lauper, hardly skipping a beat to remember. “That felt really comfortable. You have to go with what makes you feel good. But honestly, bleach does destroy your hair. You’ve got to watch the bleach.”

Against this juggernaut, HIV skeptics don’t stand a chance

What must informed observers of the HIV-AIDS debacle over 27 years think of these new recruits to the 21st Century Grand Illusion? Sad to say, that it is a great waste of the talent and goodwill of these fine people that they should be so devoted to a scientific error of such grand proportions that it now has taken over the entire world, like some new religion.

Contemplating these news items, one shudders at the sheer hopelessness of countering this modern day version of the Children’s Crusade. Suggesting to Cyndi and the hairdressers that the basic premise of their cogitations on this scientific fairy tale happens to be plain wrong, and revealed to be so in the scientific literature which they are unable to read, wrapped as it is in the enigmatic curtain of self protective HIV-AIDS technical jargon, – ie that HIV does not cause HIV-AIDS and that the vicious drugs given for it are entirely misdirected – has about as much chance of gaining a hearing, we would estimate, as standing in the path of a stampeding herd of gazelles and trying to direct traffic.

The few brave enough to try this trick seem to be dwindling over the years, though there are some white knights still astride their horses and standing their ground, most prominent the tireless and indomitable HIV-AIDS critic David Crowe at While we admire his and others’ courage and stamina, we are not sure that their waving their lances above the tumult has had much effect to date, or will ever have.

After more than five years of translating the sometimes supremely intelligent science of those who contradict the ruling paradigm of HIV-AIDS, and the usually supremely uninformed science of those who promote and defend the paradigm, into lay language, we would assess the influence of this, our own site, as roughly zero.

In fact, we would say that for twenty three years, HIV-AIDS “skeptics” and “doubters” have made virtually no progress whatsoever in changing the minds of the vast squirming pyramid of passengers on the cruise liner to nowhere, the good ship SS HIV, that is to say, all the officials in governments and scientific institutions, the “activists”, the unread MDs, the AIDS news reporters from the New Yorker on down, the expensively suited pharma executives and salespersons, and many other people of goodwill in the field whose sole scientific expertise in HIV-AIDS is that “my friend/colleague/official/reporters/actisists/everybody tells me so.”

Time for HIV critics to give up?

No wonder one of our latest emails from that front is from an at least temporarily retired leader in HIV-AIDS skeptical reporting who says she was chatting with another celebrated mythbuster (mythbusting as in writing doggedly over years about the evidence and reasoning that HIV does not and never could cause what is labeled “HIV-AIDS”) and agreed that they had got precisely nowhere in placing their fingers in the dyke of misinformation and religious zealotry that burst long ago to flood the world and drown any dissent.

The truth is that whistleblowing even by investigative reporters
who are also that rare breed, “science critic” (of which there are about five on the planet apart from the leading examples proudly featured on this site) is a mug’s game in every endeavor of human life in the modern era of vast institutions and international social groups, and science is no exception. Large groups by nature punish those that try to review and reassess their basic beliefs, as churches have shown us over the centuries, and modern science is no exception. While in corporate life there are now a few who have survived the firing, ostracism and public humiliation of their vocation to reap tens and even hundreds of millions of dollars as ultimate reward for their willingness to step out of line and into the line of fire, there are none in science that we know of who have thus triumphed. In fact, the best and the bravest tend to be completely defeated in their idealistic efforts in the public interest, unless and until they win the Nobel.

Indeed all the Nobel prize winners that we have talked to, who typically began their careers by making discoveries which threatened to topple the previous paradigm, all say they suffered devilish evasions and rejections when they first tried to publish their revolutionary theories and findings – the very papers which eventually won them science’s biggest prize.

Funding continues to be squeezed

In the field of HIV-AIDS, interest in the alternative interpretation of what is going on, seems to have dwindled to negligible levels now. Indeed, even the mainstream assessment of the threat, dire as ever, is having a hard time gaining attention, today’s World AIDS Day seems to show.

The teacher’s pets who rush to stand up for and promote the status quo in the face of growing apathy on the part of even the New York Times, from today’s edition of which there is a noticeable absence of the usual cheerleading for AIDS funding seen every year in the past when World AIDS Day rolls around – there is only one piece in the paper on AIDS today and it does not mention World AIDS Day.

Nor is there any Op Ed piece by John Moore of Cornell Weill Medical Center castigating dissenters from HIV=AIDS as deserving to be socially and possibly literally hung, drawn and quartered for “endangering lives”. No piece by Anthony Fauci of NIAID, either, urging ever higher funding for anything in the cause of battling the spread of HIV around the world. As if HIV has ever spread. As anyone who attends to the nightly newscasts on TV knows, the spread of HIV in the US ever since the blameless but globally condemned microbe was detected in Paris, and then (re)discovered in 1984 in the suspect lab work of Robert “Bob” Gallo, then at the NIH, has been precisely zero, according to the official numbers. The same proportion of the population – 1 in 300 – is infected in 2011, as two decades earlier. Year after year, from the late eighties, the CDC has announced and the tv news readers have faithfully repeated that the number of people in the US who are “HIV positive” is 1 million.

Since the death rate has stuck at about 17,000 a year according to the same unquestioned authority, the CDC, this means that newly detected infections are stable at about 17,000 a year. Since this is roughly the number of children born every year with HIV, the only route of infection is clearly perinatal ie from mother in the womb or during or after birth. Thus, there is no heterosexual epidemic and never has been – HIV is, as Nancy Pelose proved in a very embarrassing but inarguable study, the largest of its kind ever, HIV is simply virtually non-infectious among heterosexuals.

And how about the steady rate of AIDS deaths in the US, now 17,000 a year (according to the CDC; according to the WHO it may be 24,000 a year)? If this is so, what happened to the life saving aspect of antiviral drugs? Clearly, they kill most patients in the end as reliably as before when the extremely nasty AZT was the only drug dispensed. The newer, milder drugs just take longer – long enough for most of the press and other observers to stop watching. Instead, they repeat the myth than the drugs are life saving, and enable patients to live a normal life.

Media propaganda lowers pitch

This evening, there was little or nothing on most of the major news sources, though DW_TV from Germany ran a segment about an unconquered HIV positive gay man whose work colleagues were confident he would not infect them (actually the least likely belief voiced in the segment, in our opinion, since those who take the “meds” tend to suffer from weakened immune systems as a result, and carry all kinds of germs that they would easily overcome if they weren’t taking the deleterious drugs).

According to the DW-TV segment, one Dirk Stoeger has been manfully taking these dreadful concoctions for some years now even though when he first was given the medication, “I was so crippled after taking the tablets I couldn’t walk. I had diarrhea, couldn’t sleep and even the sight of the tablets made made me throw up.” With the AZT share in the cocktail of drugs dwindling over the years from 100 per cent before 1995 to being completely absent from recommended prescriptions since 2006, the newer drugs have been less damaging and caused fewer side effects. This has allowed the unfortunate Dirk to survive longer than the typical patient 20 years ago, and conveniently for the orthodoxy bolsters the myth that they hold back the depredations of HIV, and thus “prove” that HIV is the cause of AIDS symptoms.

In fact, it is clear from the literature (if read without paradigm blinkers) that HIV does not cause AIDS, and HIV-AIDS resulted from drug intake in the US, either recreational or medical, and is simply other diseases relabeled HIV-AIDS in Africa – particularly a rather severe TB now rampant on the Dark Continent. The inability of the professionals who work in the field to see this is the prime example of how even in science large groups these days run amok with false ideas if they attract funding.

Quite how one would ever explain this to Cindi Lauper is beyond us to imagine, especially when the world of expertise ordains otherwise. To attend to and absorb such a complete rewriting of your world view in any arena, you have to have an unusually open mind and and an unusual capacity for independent thought, not to mention an appetite for translating technical jargon from scientific journals into the King’s English. While we respect the intelligence of women in general as equal to that of men in general, we doubt that Cindi, a celebrated leader in the art of musical show business, would have the interest, patience or ability even to fathom the above paragraphs.

In fact proselytizing any patient who is HIV positive and has fallen into the hands of the great devouring dragon of the HIV-AIDS medical profession is a lost cause, in our opinion, even if they are smart and able to handle scientific topics, unlike most arts graduates. Once made vulnerable by being told they are HIV positive, they are typically incapable emotionally of placing their trust in anybody but their chosen physician.

Nor is it any good approaching the great and influential of the world. Like almost every scientist or doctor these days, even in the field of HIV-AIDS, they or their staff have no time to spare to study up on the alternative view of one of the many mainstream premises they take for granted in advancing themselves. In medicine they barely have time to read more than the headlines of JAMA and the NEJ. Their research into any topic outside their immediate office work typically amounts to little more than “asking John” for his opinion, or whoever they know who is supposed to know the answer.

Militant but naive recruits fight for fantasy

In other words, any whistleblowing in HIV-AIDS is stymied from the start, while going along is encouraged at every turn. Thus the Times piece today announces that College Campuses Are Producing a New Kind of AIDS Activist. How marvelous it is that the purveyors of a dangerously misleading claim can find an army of enthusiastic soldiers on the very campuses where truth seeking is the professed goal of all and where critical thinking is supposedly the main lesson!

Roughly a quarter-century after gay men rose up to demand better access to H.I.V. medicines, a new breed of AIDS advocate is growing up on college campuses. Unlike the first generation of patient-activists, this latest crop is composed of budding public health scholars. They are mostly heterosexual. Rare is the one who has lost friends or family members to the disease. Rather, studying under some of the world’s most prominent health intellectuals, they have witnessed the epidemic’s toll during summers or semesters abroad, in AIDS-ravaged nations like Rwanda, Tanzania and Uganda.

College activism, and AIDS activism in particular, is nothing new. On Wednesday, World AIDS Day, students across the nation will participate in speeches, fund-raisers and the like. But a loose-knit band of about two dozen Ivy Leaguers, mostly from Harvard and Yale, is using more confrontational tactics, as well as some high-powered connections, to wangle encounters with top White House officials in a determined, and seemingly successful, effort to get under Mr. Obama’s skin.

Their protests — which have drawn a sharp rebuke from the president (not to mention some disapproving parents) — come as many in the AIDS advocacy community are wondering aloud whether Mr. Obama is as devoted to their cause as his immediate predecessor, George W. Bush. In 2003, Mr. Bush began vastly increasing spending on lifesaving antiretroviral medicines for AIDS patients in impoverished nations; the number receiving the drugs has shot up from 50,000 to more than five million today. Yet the World Health Organization says as many as 10 million lack needed therapy.

As they say, a little knowledge is a dangerous thing. All those who appreciate what is really going on can only hope that Obama’s foot dragging will continue, so that the health of those ten million can be rescued from the depredations of a scheme which is planning to expand their number to include every man, woman and child on the planet, if the current trend to test everyone in sight with or without their knowledge continues.

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