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Richard Johnson of Page Six gives Celia a boost, notes Gallo is Corrected

New York Post unafraid to back Harper’s author

Gallo South African team loses Cup to Canada

The top buzz column in Manhattan draws attention today (Jul 11 Tue) to Celia Farber’s defense team scoring a World Cup win over her detractors in HIV?AIDS in Cuckoo Over AIDS Writer

The column notes that the Gallo team which launched the offensive against the newly minted media celebrity’s article in Harper’s March issue, “Out of Control: AIDS and The Corruption of Medical Science” (see Blogroll List on this page bottom right, where all the pages mentioned are listed), has now been replied to by the Rethinking AIDS team captained by David Crowe of the Alberta Reappraising AIDS Society.

The ’56 errors’ claimed by Gallo and his colleagues in the South African Rockefeller Foundation funded Treatment Action Campaign and the Treatment Action Group in New York were carefully analysed and none of them passed muster.

In a 95 page reply posted on the Rethinking AIDS site, the group found no errors whatsoever in the Farber piece. The only error was one which Farber finally realized herself, she says, which is the rather obvious one that cuckoo clocks are not grandfather clocks.

So-called community AIDS activists were sprung like cuckoo birds from grandfather clocks at the appointed hour to affirm the unwavering AIDS cathechism: AIDS drugs save lives.

Apparently she (or Richard Johnson or the Page Six editors) is still confused, since cuckoo clocks do actually have pendulums (pendula?):

CUCKOO OVER AIDS WRITER

July 11, 2006 — CELIA Farber, the maverick author of “Serious Adverse Events: An Uncensored History of AIDS,” is having the last laugh on the medical-industrial complex that’s trying to destroy her. Farber, part of an insurgent group which distrusts most of the research done on AIDS, was attacked earlier this year after Harper’s published a comprehensive article she wrote on the subject. A pharmaceutical-promoting organization in South Africa called TAC (Treatment Action Campaign) spearheaded the attack and composed a manifesto claiming Farber’s story contained at least 56 errors. But now another group, Rethinking AIDS, has released a rebuttal finding “no serious errors.” Farber tells Page Six, “There was one error, actually, that was brought to my attention by a clock collector. I likened the drug-promoting activists to cuckoo birds sprung from grandfather clocks, but grandfather clocks have pendulums. I regret the error.” The cuckoos forgive you, Celia.

What the item fails to note is the clincher, however. This is that the Gallo team have no comeback to all this, and therefore this is a rout for the South African visitors.

All they have been able to come up with is the notion that the reply is not worth replying to, since it is full of errors which they are unable to point out.

The AIDStruth website’s creators are aware that the AIDS denialist group, Rethinking AIDS, has finally prepared what they deem to be a rebuttal of our exposure of the errors perpetrated by Celia Farber in her Harper’s Magazine article. We have looked over the AIDS denialists’ response. It is characteristically superficial and silly, further exposing the Rethinking AIDS group’s misunderstanding of the science of HIV/AIDS. We will not be responding further to it. The AIDStruth website will continue to post, at periodic intervals, information that is relevant to understanding how HIV infection causes AIDS and how AIDS can be treated with anti-retroviral drugs.

(In fact, there are a couple of nuts and bolts which need tightening, but they haven’t been able to detect them. We will do so anon, in a summary of the too long Correcting Gallo document, which at 95 pages printed out is likely to serve as an authoritative reference from now on, but will otherwise be ignored by most science reporters, since apart from being too long it also looks far too similar to the scientific literature which they habitually avoid at all costs, for fear of mental strain and even breakdown.)

Cup awarded to Harper’s and Farber.

103 Responses to “Richard Johnson of Page Six gives Celia a boost, notes Gallo is Corrected”

  1. Frank Lusardi Says:

    So, Truthseeker, are you saying that, in the final moments of a frenzied match, maddened at the thought of his team’s imminent defeat, player Zackie Achmat of Team TAC, mid-field, found himself faced by player David Crowe of Team Farber, patiently elucidating the manifold absurdities of the HIV?AIDS Dogma, and, further maddened, maddened beyond endurance, player Achmat HEAD-BUTTED player Crowe? Is that what you are alleging?

  2. Truthseeker Says:

    He tried to, Frank, but unfortunately, weakened by the giant pills he is now taking daily, he could only nod his head.

  3. Celia Farber Says:

    The simple thing I would like to point out, again, here and now, is that my article in Harper’s was about concrete, tragic events that DID happen.It was not vaporous arguments about HIV causation. Part one: Joyce Ann Hafford killed. Cover up.Part two: HIVNET trial. Deaths, cover up. Obfuscation. Reprimand. Carrer Destruction.Part three: (the by now familiar pattern…) Peter Duesberg writes ONE paper that goes against orthodoxy. Shot out of the sky. Bang.May have the genetic answer to cancer.Doesn’t matter. Dead man.There is nothing TAC, Gallo, AIDS TRUTH.org, or Laurie Garrett can produce that can possibly affect any of these three realities, detailed in Harpers. This whole thing has been a theater of smoke, noise, distraction.Thank you for trying to clarify this theater of the absurd.

  4. HankBarnes Says:

    Hey, Johnny “Dodge” Moore may have the NY Times, but Celia has the New York Post:)When will Moore break his cowardly silence and debate Dr. Bialy on the merits!Hank Barnes

  5. Truthseeker Says:

    The simple thing I would like to point out, again, here and now, is that my article in Harper’s was about concrete, tragic events that DID happen.It was not vaporous arguments about HIV causation. Don’t want to give you a hard time Celia – but doesn’t this put the cart before the horse? Of course, what you say is true – your complaints in Harpers involved real provable events and not theoretical argument. But if HIV does not cause AIDS, then isn’t the fraud of this universal premise causing far more damage than the more limited incidents you described? Treating a number of patients in a drug trial as guinea pigs whose lives don’t matter, or even greasing licensing for lethal drugs to be used on unborn children to please the drug companies and the higher bureaucracy, may involve all too many victims, and provide concrete examples of destruction, but not the world of future damage involving the many millions who are now candidates for HIV?AIDS drugs. The shadow of the paradigm falls across the entire world now and threatens to ruin the health of tens of millions of people if it is allowed to fly on. Doesn’t this make it important for thought leaders like you to make up your mind as to where you stand publicly on this issue? Censorship was acknowledged in your Harper’s piece to be the basic corruption that explained the lesser ones you nailed in your first two thirds of the piece. That was how Duesberg was introduced, and concern over his fate justified. But why would it even matter if he was wrong? Was he not presented as very credible? Was it just an issue of free speech? The reader was given the impression that everything he said made sense, and it was only politics that explained the rejection of his critique of the paradigm. Yet you state in your book that you don’t know enough to say whether HIV is or is not the cause of AIDS, and recently you were quoted to the same effect in the Times piece – that people should distinguish between writing about dissent and dissenting. As we have argued in these pages, this seems so unbelievable that it damages your authority in calling attention to what is going on in HIV?AIDS with your front line reporting, which consistently suggests what the problem is – that a bad paradigm is being protected from the top by censorship, sometimes violently in word and deed (barring publication of papers, blocking speaking opportunities and so forth). Good paradigms don’t need goons and verbal violence to protect themselves from critics.Surely we all know that after 19 years of determined and adventuresome reporting on this topic which has seen you gain more experience of its different facets perhaps than any other objective reporter, you have to have formed a judgement of whether the science is valid, even if you don’t wish to follow its defendants into every nook and cranny of their twisting scientific justifications of a paradigm that on the face of it doesn’t seem to be able to fly at all, however hard they push it down the runway.Perhaps you are being politick by not committing yourself in public and remaining officially the “objective reporter”, but this seems to us to be only acquiescing to one of the ways in which the paradigm promoters have kept the press on a leash for two decades. You think that HIV doesn’t cause AIDS? You’re not objective! You’re a Duesbergite! Moreover, it looks unconvincing in the light of your deep and evocative reporting, which is really a cultural critic’s commentary on the thoughtlessness and greed you see rampant at every turn, in all its different ramifications and camouflages. There is more than genuine belief in the paradigm at work here, your reporting makes clear. Motives are suspect in the extreme. Surely it is the bad paradigm that breeds bad motives, as your piece argued.Sooner or later even a cultural critic has to face up to what will emerge sooner or later, when things crumble. Then it will be clear that you would have to have been a donkey to have spent your life taking the lid off HIV?AIDS without perceiving that HIV is about as likely to cause AIDS as the moon is to drop onto Anthony Fauci’s head. And to be hamstrung by the thought that you will no longer be an “objective reporter” if you say so is simply to play into the hands of the people who are fighting a rearguard action against this perception as the sand beneath their feet crumbles, isn’t it? Not saying that you should make this the centerpiece of your critique, not at all. But you shouldn’t be reluctant to say what you have concluded, if asked, should you?For surely your watershed Harpers article has to be the beginning of the end of this nightmarish charade as the media finally begin to awake from their slumber, with others emboldened just as Richard Johnson is by the fact of the Harper’s piece. More articles are coming, more books – the dam will burst at some point as it builds. Do you have to be a science reporter to stand up and be counted on whether the paradigm flies or not? We don’t think so. Especially since it will take the standing up of thousands of people who are not scientists or science reporters to carry the issue to its conclusion. Excuse us trying to drive the point home – the truth is that we are not sure. We feel we may be overlooking the Machiavellian politics of the game in some way. But it seems useful to state the argument as forcefully as possible and see how it flies. Probably the answer is that your instincts are correct. If so, we are really just asking your reasoning.

  6. Martin Kessler Says:

    I think Truthseeker is correct, what’s sad is that I get the impression that Farber may be trying to remain journalistically neutral in the AIDS War. Does that mean that by doing this Farber will be able to be published in nationally (maybe worldwide) available publications? Tod Schweigen can kill a journalistic career too.

  7. Truthseeker Says:

    Martin, would you mind expanding on those cryptic remarks? Who or what is Tod Schweigen? And what do you mean exactly – that remaining journalistically neutral will not guarantee worldwide publication, so it is a waste of time anyway?

    If you mean that, we agree. The whole topic is verboten, period. If you can break the NIH stranglehold on science writing, where they can apparently dictate media coverage even to the New York Times, which has apparently given a virtual editor’s office to Anthony Fauci, to its own eternal humiliation, then good luck to you. But you can’t fly under the radar by claiming to be neutral on HIV, they detect it in a second.

    The only sensible policy is to stand up and stand for or you stand still, as has happened for 19 years. Otherwise you just nibble around the edges, charging specific outrages of a lesser kind, as the Harpers article did, probably to the ultimate satisfaction of Anthony Fauci, who was probably horrified at Robert Gallo and his team charging out of the gate attacking the last third of the piece where Duesberg was featured saying the whole paradigm was a mockery and why. Bob, you’re just calling attention to it! he must have fumed, if they are still on speaking terms.

    Thank God for Gallo, who throughout this scandal has always been the one to take the bait and say too much, providing a foothold for critics on the otherwise smooth as glass battlements of the HIV?AIDS castle, where silence and censorship has been the successful strategy throughout.

    Now he has provided 56 footholds, 56 points where the validity of the paradigm critique has been demonstrated, and the falsity of its rejoinders exposed. The only way in which this acts to bury discussion is in its length, a problem which we think can be solved by this blog taking up the topic and carving it into manageable slices in posts addressing the main aspects, which we will now do.

  8. pat Says:

    “Tod Schweigen” is German for dead silence. 😉

  9. Truthseeker Says:

    In that case, very, very true. Silence kills. The Fauci policy for 19 years, worked perfectly. Why, the activists even made him a button he could brazenly wear, while laughing at them behind their backs (we are told this is one source of amusement at NIAID, the idea of activists that they are steering the ship).

  10. Celia Farber Says:

    I only meant that the article was composed of bricks and mortar so to speak. Very bad things that happened. The blue thread was reprimand, punishment, fear, cover up etc.The hysterical attacks on it claimed that it “argued that HIV does not cause AIDS.”That is what Duesberg, and others, have “argued.”I have depicted those arguments, over and over–since 1987. What the Harper’s article actually showed was the reality of the landscape in a world under a paradigm where HIV is believed to cause AIDS. It was said to be filled with errors, but the three main pillars were all fact based–real history. Joyce can’t be undead, HIVNET can be un-scrambled, Duesberg can’t be un-punished. These things can’t be said to be “misleading and wrong.”I am only taking a very literal position on what THAT article contained vs. what it was depicted as containing, by the screechers.This shows that their reading comprehension is low.

  11. Celia Farber Says:

    I thought we had established that AIDS is (among other things) a mass transfer of un-earned authority. Why am I constantly castigated here, for failing to assume more authority than I feel is right?

    People I meet, speak to, listen to, who have been caught in this web, who have tested HIV positive, and encountered any of the myriad tragic or near tragic outcomes–they are the reservoirs for answers. They are the ones who can tell us what is what. I am a medium for as many voices as possible, and that’s it. My “statement,” is a composite of them. What I feel is reflected through my choices of who I have quoted, certainly, and how I have quoted them, as well as through the connective narrative–when I return to my own voice.

    What is the issue that is still unresolved about my objectivity or subjectivity?

    I am proudly not-objective. I think this is a horror.

  12. Truthseeker Says:

    Maybe it is the hot weather, Celia, or the thunderstorm about to unload on Manhattan. But we are still not sure that you mean what you seem to say: You are merely a medium, Celia, through whom others speak? You take no position on the cause of the mess, you just report the mess in the words and actions of those that particpate, and leave it to them to tell readers whether to believe HIV causes AIDS is a giant mistake, is that it? So the perception that you are friendly to the critics of the HIV?AIDS paradigm, and even held a party for them, is an unwarranted besmirching of your independent cultural critic stance, and however horrified you are by the murder and mayhem you record, you are not the one to ask how it all came about? Why do we feel that somewhere in this there is an attempt to have your cake and eat it? You make us feel as if we are invading your privacy! OK, so if someone asks us if you believe that HIV causes AIDS, or not, we will reply, Don’t ask personal quetions! Celia believes as Celia does. Damned impertinence!

  13. Mark Biernbaum Says:

    I’d like to defend Celia’s right to not commit to saying that HIV does not cause AIDS for several reasons. First, from a semantic/definitional perspective, the “AIDS” diagnosis has been a moving target for 20 years. It would be somewhat irrational to say that one knew what caused AIDS, when AIDS is continually changing, and when it appears to be one thing in Westernized countries and another thing entirely (and defined differently) in Africa.

    Second, although both Duesberg’s critique of HIV=AIDS and the Perth Group’s critique are extremely compelling, they do not constitute proof of causation by other factors in either case. At best, they argue that HIV is a poor choice for causation of what we call “AIDS,” but they cannot say any more than that, as they have not been funded to perform the necessary research on causation, a point I’ve made in this forum and in print in Harper’s.

    So again, although Celia and I and many, many others may see the HIV= AIDS paradigm as a failure, we are not yet, scientifically, in a position to either reject it outright or endorse an alternative hypothesis. Those on the inside of the HIV=AIDS paradigm, like Rebecca Culshaw, can reject the HIV= AIDS hypothesis based on her own work in the area. The rest of us can point to the many impossibilities and contradictions contained within the hypothesis, but as we are not actively performing research in the area, it would be a stretch to say much more than it appears as though the paradigm has failed. The final answer to this question can only be found through a great deal of additional research, which we must lobby to have funded. I believe Celia’s position is appropriate both journalistically and scientifically.

  14. Celia Farber Says:

    Thank you Mark.

    And before I proceed, I want to state the obvious, that I owe a debt of thanks to Truthseeker for his close and always lively, free-wheeling chronicling of everything that has transpired since Harper’s published my article in late Feb. I also feel that the article became a strange magnet for things I could not have anticipated. YES it is true that too much attention went to it, and me, and the shadows on the walls, etc. Every time I try to clear it up, it seems to get worse. I would love to change the subject!

    But regarding this argument:

    I can’t follow much of what Truthseeker just wrote–it seems a fairly convoluted cloud of recrimination. Is the question:

    1. Do I “think” HIV causes AIDS? (Who cares what I think?)
    2. Do I “think” people who don’t “think” HIV causes AIDS must say so in print? (No. It weighs precisely nothing, for a journalist to state this.)

    3. Is it accurate to say that I sometimes socialize with people who are known as HIV dissidents? (Yes.)

    4. Did I attend such a gathering in June, and invite a journalist there to meet people and talk about all kinds of things? (Yes.)

    5. Do I feel disingenuous, like I am protecting something, vying for mercy or success? (NO. Not in the slightest.)

    6. Every line of reportage is a conscious statement on the part of the reporter. There is always a reason why each thread goes in, and this is what one stands by. I can’t understand how Truthseeker could read my work and then complain that I don’t go far enough, which seems a consistent complaint. Have cake and eat it too?

    There IS no cake. What do you mean?

    There are only (so far) various manifestations of punishment and suffering for all who try to report candidly (scientifically, journalistically or otherwise) on the deathly dystopia of the HIV/AIDS paradigm. These punishments themselves become part of the medium of grasping what is happening and why. So they are instructive.
    I don’t think the “question,” is: “Does HIV Cause AIDS?”
    This is a stale and old trap of a question. The question is, what are the consequences of the paradigm? Has the world gotten better or worse under it?

    I have made it abundantly clear that I am gravely alarmed about the post-1984 world of AIDS.

    Who cares about the original idea when there are concrete horrors all around?

    Let me offer an example: We know that there was a reporter (whose name escapes me now,) who “broke” the story of the mass death by famine under Stalin in the USSR. (Not Muggeridge, but the fellow who preceded him, who was eventually killed.)

    Truthseeker would have been more pleased, it seems, if those two journalists had made it damn clear that they had deconstructed Marx/Lenin in THEORY, right? Not simply boarded those trains through the Ukrianian countryside and recorded death by the tens of thousands? They would have to trumpet loud and clear what they thought of Das Kapital? Do this from where? From the vantage point of a desk?

    I believe in recording what is happening, first, what one can see and hear and smell and KNOW.

    I think perhaps it comes more naturally to males to be preoccupied with theory, with ideological battles.

    I am a wool-gatherer. If I have to cite gender as my final defense then I will.

    I am gathering all the time. I think that the pictures form in what one gathers and I wish everybody would stop talking so much and hit the streets and tell us what’s GOING ON, as Marvin Gaye so lyrically put it.

  15. Claus Says:

    Although the point of Ms. Farber’s analogy is clear and remains unaffected, I must protest that the link between Marx’analysis of capitalism – which includes all the sounds, colours and smells of the misery on the streets of London (to invoke another musical evergreen)- and famine under Stalin is even less tangible than that between HIV-AIDS, and the paradigm it expresses even more potentially deadly.

  16. Celia Farber Says:

    Claus: You’re right. I am not great with comparisons, and that was not a very sound one. But my main point was to try to get at the greatest cliche in all of writing/journalism namely “Show, Don’t Tell.”

    The truth is that I am frustrated that Truthseeker sounds faintly betrayed and I want to get the sandgrain out of our gizzard, so we can carry on. I think at heart what we are actually talking about is intellectual confidence. I have to concede with Truthseeker that there comes a time when you have to say X or Y, loud and clear.

    I am only saying that I feel personally that my thing, or habit, or style, is to gather, or transmit the feelings of others. The laments, sorrow, convictions, certainties, rage etc. There can be, I suppose, a kind of cowardice in this. Or something parasitic.

    So what do I think?

    I reserve my categorical statements and bombast for the subject of Journalism. I think it should be much dirtier, freer, wilder, warmer than it is these days in America. I’ll refrain from any comparisons….

    I think that when Hunter S. Thompson wrote his first sentence, he burned down the field, and changed its parameters forever. I agree with all he said about objectivity/subjectivity. Objectivity is fear… of human pain.

    It should not be confused with accuracy, which cannot exist in the absence of a deep emotional response. I have tried to explain in my book how I feel about the paradigm and what I conclude and why it repels me. It is an act of violence, always, to tell any human being when and how they will die. In my book, I quoted (I hope accurately) Prometheus saying that he blinded humans to the day of their deaths, “so that they would aspire.” Having a basic education in Classics, this is one of my few original contributions. And I stand by it!

  17. Michael Says:

    Upon inspection, almost every news story, political, scientific, or otherwise, ever presented, is done so from a point of obvious positionality which seldom presents evidence from any opposing position. As Dr. Gallo can well attest to, the inevitable result of taking any polarized and irrevocable position on any subject, is that it is then open to uninvited attack by every other ways and means of possibly percieving the situation, no matter how seemingly correct, provable, or bizarre or unprovable the other position might be or seem to be. Witness the common opposition both to Gallo and to each other, of those whom believe HIV was created by Gallo at Fort Detrick to kill blacks and gays, and the Duesbergian camp of HIV is harmless. None in this troika can see I to eye. Another example of positionality are those whom believe that AIDS was “Gods Punishment for Homosexuals”, while the other side responded to that declaration with “AIDS is proof there is no GOD”. The entire discussion becomes meaningless and unprovable to anyone, but either side of the argument fits very well in the minds of those opposing positionalities. And positionality is not only dangerous to obvious falsehood. Witness for example Galileo, whom stood up for his belief that the earth circled the sun contrary to common belief. It left him open to nothing but attack from every other position. Some spouted scientific types of opposition against him, and some shouted religious dogma, but many esteemed people from positions low or high had some way of mispercieving Galileo’s position on reality that seemingly made sense to themselves if no-one else. This last example is a reminder that if the listener or reader has some type of vested interest in the wind blowing toward the east, they will fight tooth and nail to claim it is blowing only in the direction they claim. By simply pointing out to the general public that all of the falling leaves are flopping to the WEST side of the tree when the experts of hot air say the wind only blows EAST, certainly provides every evidence for the listener to know which way the wind blows, and does so without inviting a coming to blows with anyone. How can anyone prove or disprove the HIV ideology to anyone that wants to keep it intact? Many are the gays whom are receiving substantial payoffs for their diagnosis in the form of early retirement with an SSI Check of the Month Club Membership, free medical and dental care, free housing, and on and on. Many receive the pity from friends and family that is percieved as now being loved and cared about. And then, there are probably more people making a living off of HIV/AIDS than even have the diagnosis. Try shoving an opposing position down the throat of any of these vested beings, and they will simply puke it back up and protest in the same incoherent babble that we have all been witness to time and again. These people are obviously not looking for truth, they are simply protecting their asses and assets. Personally, I think that if one does take a position, it might be good judgement to qualify it as “My Opinion” or “I Believe”, as everyone is entitled to their unique opinions or beliefs, and there is no ensuing battle to fight, yet it certainly gets the point across. And to finish up, I think it was Plato whom gave the advice: “Seek the Company of those who Seek the Truth. Run from those who claim to have found it”.

  18. Robert Houston Says:

    Why do most of the guys writing on this thread come across as petty mixed-up faultfinders and only the woman seems sensible, clear and rational? Truthseeker’s lengthy statement seems to suggest that a journalist reporting on a medical controversy is obliged eventually to take sides as an outspoken advocate. This can be safely practiced, however, only when the side taken is that of the government or institutional authorities. A journalist who openly advocates minority views is likely to have difficulty publishing except in minority channels. Moreover, she would undermine her own credibility by becoming an advocate rather than a witness to events. Furthermore, as a non-scientist, the reporter’s personal judgment on a scientific issue would carry little weight. She would actually be more effective and useful by refraining from such self-proclamations. A sophisticated journalist such as Celia Farber can promote a view more effectively in more subtle ways, by her choices in emphasis, selection of authorities, and description of events, rather than by personal endorsements.

  19. Truthseeker Says:

    Celia, we hope you are not feeling that we have focused sunlight on you through a magnifying glass to burn your skin and torment you, we were only trying to get your contribution to discussion of a general point that concerns us, which is: Is this the moment to stand up and be counted ourselves on the point of HIV causing AIDS or not, and change HIV?AIDS to HIVXAIDS on this blog? After a year and a half blogging the events of this affair we can now find no excuse whatsoever for anybody believing in HIV as the cause of any ailment, and it seems silly to go on posing for journalistic purposes as not having reached a judgement based on the evidence. People who come to this blog because they feel it might be well informed on the topic from one individual point of view deserve to know this, even if it means that the number of unenlightened editors who wish to assign me “objective” articles on the topic may shrink to zero.Just as we have been forced to a conclusion on this vital topic, which seems to us the key to what is going on in HIVXAIDS, we wondered if you had also. Now you give various reasons for not having done so or, if you have, for not saying so. Fair enough, we thank you for that. But for whatever reason, perhaps our generally dim perceptions, we can’t follow the logic of everything you say. For instance, we have to say that your statement that your opinion is of no value to anybody seems very odd, if it is not a pose. Your twenty years of reporting do not inform your judgement and give it authority? we would have thought the opposite, and that Harpers valued your proposal on the topic precisely because you are qualified to perceive what is going on better than almost anybody in the country, having been at it for nineteen years and talked to almost everybody involved, though perhaps not Baltimore, Gallo or Fauci, as far as we know. Is there anybody in the country better informed in so many real world ways on this topic? You surely are an authority on it, including the problem of sorting out the scientific debate lucidly with Peter Duesberg and Harvey Bialy. To our mind you do not lack countervailing authority. The question is, why you do not wish to use that authority in the issue of whether the paradigm is a crock or not. We are only raising the topic not to harrass you for an answer if you do not wish to give it but because a) we are contemplating our own position and b) it has already been raised in public by others who reacted to your “covering dissent is different from dissent” remark quoted by the New York Times piece on the Harper’s article. Truthseeker would have been more pleased, it seems, if those two journalists had made it damn clear that they had deconstructed Marx/Lenin in THEORY, right? Not in fact. We see nothing in common between a scientific hypothesis, that HIV=AIDS, which is now the starting premise of billions of dollars worth of medical measures throughout the world, and Marx’s political theory of the way the political economy works. One depends on measurable scientific evidence, and is either true or false, and the other is political economics where the relationships are not mechanistic and perceptions and values are human, subjective, and not always measurable directly, but often have to be deduced from their consequences.But we do understand your point (we think) that you make it your business to report from the prisons of the gulag and leave theory up to the specialists. However, this willingness to leave the science up to the scientists just happens to be the reason why the NIH three card monte game in HIVXAIDS has been so successful to date – scientific confidence games trend to be protected from outside scrutiny because people assume that they are too specialist for outsiders to understand.We find it hard to see how mainstream editors can be persuaded not to automatically rate the view HIV is not AIDS as a crackpot view not worth their space until thousands of people outside science stand up and say they think the paradigm smells like dead fish and there should be a Congressional enquiry. Since your initiative persuaded one of the smartest editors in the country to run your piece which for one third of its time conveyed that message, seems to us that you would stand up and be counted on that basic point, according to your best judgement.If you don’t, then you have some good reasons, we are sure, and we were just enquiring as to what they were. You seem to have given quite a few, so thank you. But none of them seem to apply to us, even though we are playing the role of journalist and social scritic also. Perhaps it is because we fancy ourselves as a newer kind of animal, a science critic, who believes that scientists do not always behave better than the rest of mankind in their supposed search for truth, but are subject to the usual array of human motivations.This means that the ultimate question may be “Quis custodiet ipsos custodes?” – who will guard the guardians themselves? Surely only those who come from outside a field such as HIVXAIDS and are brave enough to tackle the almost insurmountable obscure writing and jargon of scientific papers and join the few critics inside the field in their complaint that something is very wrong, even though the scientists on top of that particular hill assure the world that everything is perfectly dandy, thank you very much, and that any complaints simply reflect lack of understanding of the science.

  20. Celia Farber Says:

    I think is a very interesting conversation. I asked a network (radio) journalist (male) over lunch some months ago: “Is the media male or female?””Male,” he said.”I agree,” I said.Masculinity is in danger in this country. Look at the American Man. Not exactly Hamlet. A psychopath, who incorporates no instinct, feeling, intuition into his personality. The woman has been cut down. Everything he says sounds rational but it is madness–bereft of some quality that we depend upon in the MEN.What is it?Compassion. Empathy. Connectedness to nature, to himself, to life. A man protects life. Isn’t that what a man is? One who protects life? All I keep thinking when I see these HIV Crushers is that they are something foreign and I don’t know what they are, but were I to be given a chance to say what I am actually thinking, I would say that they are not men. Because a man protects life.

  21. Robert Houston Says:

    P.S. The rebuttal to Gallo, which was the subject of the NY Post article, does not appear to be 95 pages, as stated in this post. My experiments on several computers indicate that in an easily read typesize with standard margins the consolidated version (available in one file) fills about 85 pages, and 92 pages with headers and footers. It can be viewed at the website of RethinkAIDS.com.

  22. Celia Farber Says:

    Ok, this is getting flaky and loopy (on my part.) I was responding to something that Robert Houston wrote–it sparked my riff on the overly masculine uptight de-feminized Man. I was thinking about those guys in The White House, truthfully. That is also where the HIV paradigm came from. Why does Donald Rumsfeld cut down branches with a buzzsaw to relax himself?

    Why are all HIV researchers so MEAN AND VICIOUS? Is that how you become by saving the lives of the entire planet?

    But to try to answer Truthseeker’s plea…I can’t imagine how the HIV PARADIGM can possible be correct or even close. Because nothing has worked, nothing makes sense, all sands shift all the time, everything has Changed, morphed into un-reconizeability, as in a nightmare…nothing is what it seems, what it was, what it was a moment before.

    I can say this with authority, because I have been watching it all, with astonishment, confusion, anxiety, and a total lack of power or authority, for 20 years.

    I don’t want to give up my position of non-authority because I like my small size and my ability to crawl into any drainpipe I choose, and also run fast. Why does Truthseeker want me to be an authority?

    I would make a miserable one. I suggest…YOU.

  23. McKiernan Says:

    “A man protects life. Isn’t that what a man is? One who protects life? “”…but were I to be given a chance to say what I am actually thinking, I would say that they are not men. Because a man protects life.”Yeah, like Hunter Thompson or Ernst Hemmingway with one shot the hunt is ended. Such is heroism.Not to be too sarcastic but there are a lot of people that wear rubber gloves for many, many years that aren’t likely to jump over a line in the sand drawn by chemists, or molecular archivists, nor journalists. But of course truth is always on their side, right ?Sometimes they/we even listen to the drivel of people like Bialy who always seems to lose it in something so simple like a combox, then blame everyone else as idiots or whatever.So who is preventing you from saying what you think ?And what happened to the Mandela post and why was it relegated to be hidden in the archives ?

  24. Truthseeker Says:

    And to finish up, I think it was Plato whom gave the advice: “Seek the Company of those who Seek the Truth. Run from those who claim to have found it”. Well, Michael, Galileo felt he had found something out about the moon, not to mention the solar system, when he looked through his new telescope. So you believe that Plato, had he lived in Rome, would have told the Paduan to “buzz off, you arrogant provincial!”? We love these comforts of the ignorant. If he ever made this banal and questionable remark, Plato was talking philosophy, not science. Truthseeker’s lengthy statement seems to suggest that a journalist reporting on a medical controversy is obliged eventually to take sides as an outspoken advocate. Robert, you have put your finger on the nub of the problem for the journalist in the present context in your knightly defense of the fair Celia, she having mentioned rather winningly that “I am a wool-gatherer. If I have to cite gender as my final defense then I will.”However, the present context is precisely the one that should be changed, will have to be changed if this issue is ever going to be exposed to daylight and matters sorted out, and lessons learned and applied. The cowing of curious and crusading journalists by playing the “objectivity” card means that full time freelance reporters who are the only people who have the time and the energy to investigate science and medicine are still not allowed to have an opinion if they wish to be assigned a story. But these are the only people who can do the job and learn enough to give their opinion authority. Columnists and bloggers (with the exception of your faithful blogger here and others who can draw on such experience) can’t do the job, unless they can get a book proposal accepted by a publisher, and counter mainstream books which run up against institutions as big as the NIH are not popular with publishers unless the author already has a big reputation and a platform.This is why the activity of John Stossel is rather exemplary in principle – he is a well placed well paid media reporter on the inside track willing to say mainstream beliefs are questionable or wrong. However, he would never challenge as big a belief as HIV=AIDS, one supported by NIAID censorship. The system acts to stifle such reporting from inside the system, as you correctly point out, from long experience in reviewing cancer research alternatives. But let’s face it, Robert, what would you reply if asked whether HIV causes AIDS? We think we know what the answer is. You would immediately say without thinking, “Absolutely not.” The only thing that would prevent you from saying so outright to anyone is if you were seeking assignment from mainstream editors. This may be what has to change. It certainly will after the paradigm falls – as it must do sooner or later, even if only because, as Max Planck said, “Science advances funeral by funeral.”

  25. Truthseeker Says:

    But to try to answer Truthseeker’s plea…I can’t imagine how the HIV PARADIGM can possible be correct or even close. Good enough for me. Attagirl! But cleverly phrased in such a way as to allow you to still crawl through the drainpipes. Excellent. Your solution is to phrase it in a way that allows both at once – worthy of Oscar Wilde.

  26. Celia Farber Says:

    One more thing, since Truthseeker has asked:

    I’d like to explain that NYT quote: “People can’t distinguish, it seems, between describing dissent and being dissent.”

    I can see how that could be read as a figleaf, a statement of Not Inhaling. etc.

    But hear me out. Here is what I meant: The Harper’s article was published by Harper’s and the magazine was famously set upon by “AIDS activists,” and “AIDS researchers,” who went so far as to “demand” Harper’s “denounce” me and “apologize to the community,” allow a 15 page ARV infomercial in the next issue, to be fact-checked by the TAC, etc. They called for Roger Hodge’s resignation, over at their little dark hole where rivers flow upstream and the HIV paradigm is coming up roses (www.aidstruth.org.)

    Truthseeker alone covered this spell of fascinating hysteria, which John Moore described as them collectively feeling Harper’s had “stabbed” them “in the back.”

    I was defending not what I may or may not think–but what Harper’s actually published . And THAT was an objective account of what Duesberg posited, and what “they” (NIH et al) did to him as a result. It was all utterly true, as it was, as it happened, period.

    It is only in a climate of such feverish ill-conceived passion as AIDS has wrought, that such REPORTAGE is seen as an act of terroristic blood-sport.

    Hence my quote: “People can’t distinguish, it seems, between covering dissent and being dissent.”

    Harper’s MAGAZINE was utterly falsely accused of writing about Duesberg’s “discredited VIEWS…FAVORABLY.”

    Harper’s only ever depicted Duesberg’s “views” as they were, objectively. What was done to him, objectively.

    AIDS journalism demands an extreme subjectivity, or passion, but calls it objectivity. One trashes, dismisses Duesberg, and one does so inaccurately, by using the inaccurate but fashionable terms “discredited,” “small,” “fringe,” etc.

    Were the media to describe it objectively, the 2400 dissenters would be included in every nutgraph about this war. That would be “describing dissent.”

    And THAT simple act has always been tantamount to being a wild revulutionary AIDS anarchist, when in fact, one is merely recording the unfolding of a scientific war.

    Does anybody understand what I mean?

    I mean that things are warped, all the time. Warped beyond recognition. I was calling for an accurate depiction of what was happening at that time. Because AIDS people can’t cope with language, detail, or any fine distinctions, everybody’s life gets thrown into a political meat grinder, and one can’t even be accused of things with ACCURACY. Had they been accurate, they would have said: Harper’s asked its readers to lament the political assassination of a dissenting scientist when in fact, we believe passionately in the destruction and removal of dissenters in HIV/AIDS. They described accurately what we did, and we are proud of it.

    That is what Lenin would have done. The Mafia.

    Any proper brute.

    At least OWN what it is that you do, and why. But they wail and scream about things that aren’t even in the text, and THAT is the most de-stabilizing. Because once again, we are left in the twilight between reality and un-reality, swinging against shadows–They can’t even admit that YES, this is a WAR, and YES, we crushed Duesberg, and we are mighty proud of it. They did however, admit NO REMORSE about Joyce Ann Hafford, and with that, I got my answer, personally, about who they are.

    And the civilized world gagged.

  27. Truthseeker Says:

    It is only in a climate of such feverish ill-conceived passion as AIDS has wrought, that such REPORTAGE is seen as an act of terroristic blood-sport.Hence my quote: “People can’t distinguish, it seems, between covering dissent and being dissent.” Good one, Celia. Explains the quote.McK, the Mandela post was just the location of a semi random Harvey comment the other day, which blew up into a chain. The post was actually over a year ago. We are of course proud that people should read and react to back numbers, some of which seem to stand up OK.

  28. Robert Houston Says:

    Truthseeker was correct about my personal answer to the question of HIV causation (“Absolutely not”), but when confronted by the question in a publishing context I was obliged to be noncommittal.

    A few years ago an editor at the Village Voice called me about my brief rebuttal to their medical writer who had just received a Pulitzer for his misreporting on AIDS in Africa. The editor said, “Your piece is thoughtful, but are you one of those nuts who believe that HIV doesn’t cause AIDS?” In other words, say yes and be rejected. I answered to the effect that “there are credentialed scientists and even Nobel laureates on both sides of that issue, so I think it’s still an open question.”

    The result of this diplomatic evasion was that my rebuttal got published (“TB or not TB?” Village Voice, 7/26/2000), though it was followed a prevaricating response from their smug misreporter.

  29. Michael Says:

    Hello Robert. Just read your “TB or not TB” response to the story in the Village Voice. You must be one of the very few, if not the only letter to the editor writer whose posting features an immediate rebuttal to your rebuttal in the the history of the Village Voice. It always fascinates me how anything and everything having to do with HIV or AIDS has always been treated in some “special” way. It is truly the most “special” retrovirus and disease of all times, no? Hello Truthseeker. You asked of me the following question… So you believe that Plato, had he lived in Rome, would have told the Paduan to “buzz off, you arrogant provincial!”? No, I do not believe that Plato would have spoken that way, and certainly not to a fellow truth seeker. The Great Plato was a very cautious man, which perhaps explains why he lived to a fairly old age in a time when most mens lives averaged a mere 25 years. Plato’s retort to Galileo would more likely have been as follows: “Your magnifier “seems to me” to be disproving common belief. “I think” you are absolutely correct. “I believe” you have found the truth.”Even if he did tell someone to “buzz off”, he most likely would have worded it: “I believe” you should buzz off. “I think” you are an arrogant provincial.

  30. Truthseeker Says:

    Alas, Robert, one of the strongest cards the paradigm defenders can play is to appeal to the distaste of all righteous citizens for mavericks, crazies, crackpots, quacks, charlatans and similar disturbers of the peace, who do not object to error within the generally accepted framework , a pest category that challengers to this precious though scientifically unsupported paradigm can easily be slotted into and Voila! instantly discredited.The sheer ignorance of the common science and medical editor as to the process of scientific advance, which by definition means that paradigms are reviewed, adjusted, improved and replaced in part or whole, is astonishing. Shouldn’t this basic understanding be required to edit science articles? They all seem to think that science progresses only by adding territory to unquestioned knowledge. (Rant follows, ignore if busy) The whole thing is infuriating, the more one thinks about it. Such science editors should be cuffed on both ears, and sent back to school. Why are they given authority when they lack basic understanding? The flow of information is only subverted by their assuming authority without familiarity with the field they are editing. This wielding of a blue pencil without proper qualifications should be punished, just as in medicine we prosecute a confidence trickster who claims to have an MD when they have none. Take away this man’s license!Here we have a situation where lives depend on the validity of the paradigm, and some jumped up petty bureaucrat of an editor at the Village Voice feels qualified to act as gatekeeper on the basis of a complete misunderstanding as to how science works! By God and humanity the man should have been put in the stocks for three days, tarred and feathered, and then run out of town. He was/is a menace to the community.Instead, of course, he was probably promoted.(End of useless rant against human nature)

  31. Frank Lusardi Says:

    The Wonkette, whoever she may be, is noting the Post’s Page Six piece. The notice sounds pro, or maybe it’s con, who knows. At least she refers to Rethinking AIDS as “an AIDS research organization”.

  32. Claus Says:

    I remember having read the Village Voice article mentioned by Robert Houston before. But obviously I wasn’t paying close enough attention then, since the experiences of the native Ugandan doctors, to whom the article pays homage, raises some very interesting issues and explains many hitherto obscure points:It is specifically claimed that ‘something new’ emerged in Uganda in the early eighties, a new never before encountered disease called ‘Slim’: ”That was 1980, before villagers here in Uganda’s Rakai District had seen enough patients like Matia to coin their own term for the new disease, Slim” (VV)The local uneducated people’s experience is reflected in that of highly educated professionals:”Nelson Sewankambo, now dean of Uganda’s Makerere University Medical School: “I had never seen the constellation of symptoms and signs that we began to see with Slim.” ” (VV)Is it possible the Ugandan doctors should have been credited with discovering the first uniquely AIDS related disease, or at least uniquely AIDS related ‘constellation of symptoms’ stemming from a single well defined disease?It seems to me that at least we have here the beginning to a truly scientific answer to the question why HIV tests are not necessary for AIDS diagnosis in Africa.The Slim findings are corroborated by the appearance of other AIDS-defining diseases in Uganda:”(The) cancer, called KS, is endemic in Uganda, but largely confined to older men who usually get easily treatable lesions on their arms and legs”(VV)But David Serwadda was, ”presented with an unusual form of the cancer that raged throughout the body. One 26-year-old woman originally came in with the lesions on her head and torso, which was unusual enough. But an autopsy revealed that the cancer had invaded her tonsils, stomach, liver, spleen, heart, and lungs.” (VV) Thus, with KS as with Slim, we see that the clinical symptoms of the specific disease are different when the underlying cause is HIV. But the Ugandan experience also tells us how to identify the progressive stages of symptomatic AIDS:”In the early stages of AIDS, when the immune system is only partly weakened, it can be hard to differentiate an ordinary patient from one infected with HIV. The rare diseases, such as aggressive KS, don’t usally attack until later in the illness.”Somebody who’s had his/her lungs completely destroyed by a common disease such (HIV+) TB or PCP would thus not be nearly as sick, as diagnosed by T cell counts, viral load etc., as someone who’s in the beginning stages of the rarer (HIV+) aggressive KS. That ought to comfort some.Or perhaps what is meant is that the rare FORMS of those diseases are only seen in the later stages of AIDS? This reading seems plausible when we consider the description of the new form of TB that’s cropped up in Uganda as a result of HIV:‘’TB, for example, is almost always confined to the upper lungs. But in HIV patients, it frequently spreads elsewhere in the body.’’ (VV)That is, in African no-test-necessary diagnosis, clinical experience informs us that the more advanced the symptoms are the more AIDS-defining the disease is. No wonder then that the mortality rates are so impressive compared with the ordinary (presumably HIV-) cases of the same disease. ‘’But the studies found that HIV-infected people died at a rate more than nine times higher than uninfected people. And the Masaka study found that infected people died a full two decades younger, at a mean age of just 34.’’ (VV)In fact the certainty of subjective clinical diagnosis, with a bit of observer training, may well exceed the 99.9999 etc. success rate of HIV tests. David Serwadda, we are told, was able to identify HIV positive Ugandan KS patients even before he knew he had seen one:‘’The chance to find out came in 1984, when the antibody test was developed for HIV, then called HTLV-III. For best results, blood samples had to be fresh, so Serwadda got up before dawn, drew blood and biopsies, and sent them off to London (…) So when Serwadda finally received the test results from those four KS patients, he rushed to show them to Sewankambo. Every one of them had tested positive for HIV. All but one of the control patients with ordinary KS had tested negative. “That’s when it dawned on us,” says Serwadda. AIDS was in Uganda.’’Sadly, we may never know if Serwadda is more precise than the HIV tests, since they are the gold standard against which his hunch was confirmed, but hat shouldn’t detract from his achievement. What we do know though is that a bit of experience and teamwork produces even more impressive diagnostic results:‘’Carswell organized an expedition to Rakai, consisting of himself, Serwadda, Bayley, Sewankambo, Mugerwa, and a taciturn virologist named Robert Downing. At Masaka Hospital and homes in Rakai villages, the team examined more than 100 patients. They diagnosed 29 people as having Slim and sent their blood to England for HIV testing. Every one of those 29 patients tested positive.’’ (VV)Although the team may have missed a couple of other Slim cases, they’ve clearly shown that AIDS has its very own disease, Slim, and that no-test-necessary HIV/AIDS diagnoses in Africa have virtually zero risk of false-positives. Perhaps most importantly, the Ugandan experience suggests that the history of the origin of AIDS might have to be re-written. According to Uganda Aids Comission, ‘Uganda was among the first hard hit countries’ (http://www.aidsuganda.org/aids/status.htm). And since the article repeatedly and unequivocally states that the ‘new’ diseases and symptoms did not show up in Uganda until the early eighties – after the ‘American experience’ was made public – it would be a reasonable working hypothesis to assume that AIDS was imported into Africa from the West. (Our integrity forbids and admirationof Ugandan doctors forbids us of course to entertain the supicion that the diseases are not that ‘new’ after all, and weren’t ‘discovered’ until certain incentives prompted the article’s Ugandan heroes to start looking for them) ‘’David Serwadda’s first inkling was the four patients with Kaposi’s sarcoma. That cancer, called KS, is endemic in Uganda, but largely confined to older men who usually get easily treatable lesions on their arms and legs. From late 1983 through ’84, when Serwadda was doing his residency in Kampala’s Mulago Hospital, four patients—all younger than 45, all from Uganda’s rural Rakai District—presented with an unusual form of the cancer’’(VV) And again:‘’Serwadda started spending his weekends at the medical library, leafing through case notes made by Sir Albert Cook, a missionary doctor who established Uganda’s first hospital more than 100 years ago. (…) As a doctor treating Slim patients, Serwadda knew what he was looking for—not just the words diarrhea or wasting, but clinical descriptions that matched what he was seeing. He kept going back for months, carefully turning the yellowed, brittle pages. But, he says, “I didn’t see it.” ’’ (VV)Finally:‘’In Zambia, a no-nonsense cancer surgeon named Anne Bayley had also seen this new type of KS—13 patients in 1983’’ (VV)As the latter example from Zambia comfirms, the ‘new‘diseases hit the US before sub-Saharan Africa, which clearly suggest to the unbiased observer that AIDS originated in the US. So the subtle question directed to the West by the Ugandans must be this: ‘Have you ever thought to examine your own poo-poo for the possible origins of this disease?’

  33. Claus Says:

    PS, For clarity, although this is satirical, when I write of other AIDS-defining ‘diseases’ than Slim ‘other’ should of course be in inverted comma’s

  34. Michael Says:

    If anyone is up to it at the moment, I could use some help with Tara, Jefferys, and a few others on the Aetiology blog, under the post “The boredom of debating Denialists”.

  35. pat Says:

    i put my cents in. don’t think it helped 😉

  36. Mark Biernbaum Says:

    In this scientific dilemma which we are all so concerned with, there are multiple roles being played. Gallo et al. maintain the party line — they’ve chosen their paradigm, and even if their results tend not to line up with that paradigm, they continue to defend — it is, in a sense, a pathology of science.However, I personally would not feel qualified to reject the entire paradigm out of hand because I am not a virologist, microbiologist, immunologist, biomathematician, etc. I am a trained scientist, and so I can look at the science of HIV=AIDs in the broadest sense and comment on whether or not the assumptions undergirding it all seem to have logical consistency or not. But I can’t feasibly comment on the work with differential equations that Rebecca Culshaw rejected, nor can I intelligently draw conclusions regarding the Perth group’s critiques, because I am not DOING that science, and a very important part of being able to draw conclusions about science comes from the DOING of it, not just the reading and critiqueing of it. There can be no doubt from her writings that Celia has the most serious doubts about the HIV=AIDS theory, but it is not her role in this scientific drama to make scientific pronouncements. She is a reporter – in fact, the best reporter I would submit. She observes things, tells a story, asks questions, and then leaves it for her readers to further question, investigate, and form their own opinions. That Celia has not come out and said that HIV cannot be the cause of AIDS is to her great credit as a journalist, I think. It is not a quesiton of being “objective” because no one is — it is a question of knowing what your role in the drama is, and fulfilling it. Celia has done that successfully for 20 years now, and some of that is likely due to the fact that she is fully in control of her journalistic self, and holds herself to the highest standards in this regard. She tells you a story, but does not tell you what to think about that — which is why the establishment hates her so much. If she would just come out and say that HIV does not cause AIDS, then they, and the media, would just simply toss her away as another journalist who has gone beyond simply telling the story — she would become, as you have Truthseeker, too much of an idealogue to be a good journalist. The entire and only reason I am involved in this in any way is because Celia Farber is an extraordinary journalist. She never told me what to think. She told me, in Harper’s, three terrifying stories. She asked questions and left space for me to investigate for myself what answers I could bring to bear. I believe that the reason the Celia has survived so long as a dissident journalist is because of the union of her exceptional ability to tell a story with integrity, without telling the reader what to think about that story. Her reticence to make a pronouncement on HIV?AIDS is exactly what has made her “the most dangerous AIDS journalist” and simply an extraordinary journalist to boot.

  37. Truthseeker Says:

    Mark, you keep reiterating that you feel unqualified to make up your mind on this, and no one need disagree with that. This blog exists, however, to inform and instruct readers as to the evidence for and against the paradigm that HIV is the cause of “AIDS”. We hope that it will suffice for most thoughtful readers to see which way the wind blows, as their hat disappears down the street.

  38. Mark Biernbaum Says:

    And just as an FYI — my knickers are not in a twist, dear TS Debating you could not possibly create that level of upset — it is not a level playing field. Have a mimosa on this Sunday morning and stop writing nasty things about me to others, if you will. Thanks terribly much.

  39. Mark Biernbaum Says:

    Michael, I’m afraid I can’t tell whom your upset with. If it’s me, I’m sorry for your upset. But yes, I want a journalist to show me things, but not to tell me what to think about them. I want scientists to behave with humility and skepticism towards their work and the work of other scientists, and yes, I think it wholly and totally inappropriate for someone to over-reach their area of expertise. This is how I was trained a scientist.

    I feel very sorry that my reticence to simply join the mob opinion upsets so many people, but ultimately, I am perfectly comfortable with uncertainty and ambiguity because one must be in order to be an effective scientist. Take Einstein as the best example. The work he was most critical of was his own.

    And I’ll say it again because it bears repeating here and now — Peter Duesberg would be the first person to admit that he has not “proven” his ideas empirically, and that such proof would be required for their widespread acceptance. Dissident theories are just that at this point in their development – they are just theories. Theories are not facts. They beg questions and generate hypotheses — they don’t confirm them. That is the job of strenous, controlled, empirical investigation. So it is simply impossible for me to endorse any dissident theory, both because I have never DONE microbiology, and thus do not completely understand the intricacies involved in such things as culturing and isolation of microbes, and also because these theories lack the necessary empirical tests. I find that there is very, very little understanding of the philosophy of science here — something that is actually quite necessary if one wants to make useful scientific contributions.

    What is clear to me, is that my reticence — my tolerance of uncertainty and ambiguity, really, really upsets Truthseeker and others who feel for reasons I do not fully understand, the need to “believe” in something that has not yet been verified scientifically. This is not a matter of faith, it is a matter of fact. I’m sorry you find my opinions disquieting. I guess I can only suggest that you ignore them as best as you can.

  40. Dan Says:

    I think this whole discussion could be simplified.Have the defenders of the paradigm proved their case, or not?If not, then there is no reason to be “on the fence”. There is no need for alternate hypotheses, or for the “other side” to prove their case. There doesn’t even need to be an “other side”.If the paradigm promoters have failed to prove their case, then there’s no paradigm. Or is this just too simple and logical for some of us to comprehend?

  41. Michael David Says:

    Mark,I have absolutely no idea how you managed to completely miss the point of my comment which was addressed to Truthseeker and had nothing to do with you or any of the points you went on about. Really, I am surprised at your misreading of these few sentences concerning the use of metaphor in journalism and science.

  42. Truthseeker Says:

    Well done, Dan, there is really nothing complicated about this issue, thank you for putting it back on the rails. Catering to the confused by being kind to their counter attacks with baby talk is a losing proposition, and it will now cease as a policy on this blog. The purpose here is to discuss the merits of the science, not to indulge the weakminded, who cannot even interpret the posts of their supporters accurately, it is clear. To preserve standards, all the spoiler comments above that involve any other topic will be removed, unless anyone can show they are relevant to the science.

  43. Mark Biernbaum Says:

    I’m so gratified for you, TS, that you’ve got it all figured out. That must be a lovely world to inhabit, although it would never be the one I would choose, because it’s fallacious. But is it really necessary for you to call me “weakminded” and “confused,” when I think you know very well that I am neither?

  44. Truthseeker Says:

    Mark, you appear to think that these adjectives were applied to you, and we should point out that you were not named. However, we do think that they are deserved very specifically by your incessant reposting on the point that you feel that no one can dismiss HIV without solid proof and this is the scientific way to proceed with this issue and also in suggesting other causes. In the first place, it is hard to prove a negative. As Mathilde Krim remarked to us, “We can’t prove that HIV causes AIDS and Peter Duesberg cannot prove it doesn’t”. But we can make an informed judgement. In the second place, Occam’s Razor indicates that where there is no evidence for something, and an abundance of evidence against it, it is sensible to conclude that it is not a fact. In this case, to deny this conclusion results in an ever multiplying set of unlikely assumptions and speculative imaginings, which is exactly why Occam’s Razor is relevant, not to mention Ptolemy. In the third place, smart people make integrative assessments of situations where the evidence is incomplete, even in science. That is how smart people stay on top.As to whether you are generally confused, that is not for us to say, since we don’t know you personally and have never met you in real life despite your repeated claims that we are “friends.” Perhaps we would be bowled over by your charm. It really doesn’t seem to be relevant to discussing l’affaire HIV. As to “weakminded”, why don’t you make a tough comment indicting the science of this field for overclaiming some specific if you refuse to do it in a wholesale way by rejecting HIV? That would persuade listeners that you were properly “scientific” much faster than incessantly saying so.

  45. Charles Stein Says:

    I have been informed from afar that Truthseeker (whoever he is) is adamant that discussion of the use of metaphor in literature and science is not relevant to this post. Perhaps the review I wrote for Dr. Bialy’s book, which was the very first to appear at the Amazon, will make it more clear.

    War on Terror, War on Cancer, War on Aids?, July 28, 2004
    Reviewer: Charles Stein (Barrytown, New York) .

    War on Terror, War on Cancer, War on AIDS. We know now how flimsy the justifications on which the first metaphorical war’s battleground was launched and is being fought to such disastrous consequences turned out to be. What Bialy shows us in his treatise on the pursuit of truth is that all of these ‘wars’ have been waged on precisely the same kind of righteously determined, but fatally flawed premises. Metaphor is the stock and trade of poetry, and Bialy, besides being a resident scholar at the Institute of Biotechnology of the National University of Mexico, and the founding scientific editor of Nature Biotechnology, is a serious poet. He does not dabble in verse or dash off an occasional line or two. He has produced a recognizable opus over 40 years of single-minded pursuit, and his poet’s intellect maintains, among many other things, a critical awareness of the power of metaphor. Thus Bialy the poet offers Bialy the scientist a wary alertness in regard to this power, and he casts a cold eye on the governing metaphors of his biological compadres, making him qua scientist a sceptic, because of his habitus as poet. Biology is particularly vulnerable to distortion by metaphor, which then operates upon the narratives it governs. If I say that an oncogene is “an enemy within,” the vividness of the image ‘infects’ the credibility of that for which it is an image. Now narratives can be constructed of how the oncogene corrupts its cell, and it becomes easy to confuse the hypothesis with its governing metaphor. Yet apparently we cannot do without narratives, at least in a biology that has gone so public. Without stories of cellular function we have only analyses of the assays by which the facts of the case are determined. Borrr-ing. But for this very reason the metaphor must be measured vigorously against the quantifiable facts, and we must insist that an understanding of the mechanical processes always be available to unpack it. A happy metaphor is never eo ipso a happy explanation. Bialy takes us through the past twenty years of Duesberg’s published science, with style, wit, and the authority that comes from having lived what he is writing about. We understand Duesberg and his scientific opponents’ thinking through their words, stripped of preconception-laden adjective and metaphor, and follow the only enduring story – how new ideas in biology originate – as though reading a high-grade detective novel. In the end, however, the book does not contain a solution as much as a message: We must remain faithful to the rigorously logical, quantifiable and testable principles of explanation that Duesberg has championed, for they are the only bases of our trust in science. These principles are hardly anyone’s personal possession, and they ought to belong to the character of every scientist. They are grounded in the same thinking that grounds the principles of democracy and fair debate; and they are abandoned in the same interests of panic (money), expediency (money), and the need for public notice (money money). It is truly ‘terrifying’ that they are both suffering such erosion at the same moment in history. Dr. Charles Stein is the author of The Secret Of the Black Chrysanthemum: The Poetic Cosmology of Charles Olson &His Use of the Writings of C.G. Jung and The Hat Rack Tree: Selected Poems from theforestforthetrees. Website: http://www.stationhill.org/artists/CS/cspage.html

  46. Truthseeker Says:

    Perhaps the review I wrote for Dr. Bialy’s book, which was the very first to appear at the Amazon, will make it more clear. Thanks, Charles, your post is a beautiful example of how a discussion of whether metaphors are justified or not diverts a review from saying what it sets out to say. We thank you for providing it and regret the use of our own rather simple metaphor of a house and a back garden last night, which we have removed together with most of the rest of the time wasting thread generated by Mark’s indecision and self justification on whether HIV makes a valid cause of AIDS or not. Metaphor is the stock and trade of poetry, and Bialy, besides being a resident scholar at the Institute of Biotechnology of the National University of Mexico, and the founding scientific editor of Nature Biotechnology, is a serious poet. He does not dabble in verse or dash off an occasional line or two. He has produced a recognizable opus over 40 years of single-minded pursuit, and his poet’s intellect maintains, among many other things, a critical awareness of the power of metaphor. However, we have to say that the likelihood of Dr. Bialy writing poetry of any emotional honesty seems remote to us as experienced recipients of his email, which often escalates to a level of frenzied hostility that has to be seen to be believed. This is not the style of a talented poet who values words and has any depth of perception about the inner universe, as far as we can see.Perhaps you have a example of his verse which you can post here to substantiate your admiration of his poetic talents?

  47. Mark Biernbaum Says:

    The rules on this playing field, I believe, have now been made abundantly clear. One either agrees wholeheartedly with “truthseeker” (such a misnomer), or one is weakminded, confused, and not worth the time of day. Why not just come right out and say that, rather than wrap it all in your useless British rhetoric and your pretense concerning discussing science openly and embracing alternative views. That’s all just a patent lie. You wouldn’t know an honest statement if it slapped your face off. But oh, the stories you tell yourself — aren’t they just lovely? I’m afraid the only weakminded person I observe here is the person who cannot tolerate not being agreed with. You’ve provided exemplary evidence of that today. That a non-scientist would dispute my ability to form a valid scientific argument speaks volumes. And loudly, as well.

    [Spelling corrected. -Ed.]

  48. Truthseeker Says:

    One either agrees wholeheartedly with “truthseeker” (such a misnomer), or one is weakminded, confused, and not worth the time of day. Sure Mark, if that is your opinion, speaking for yourself. We won’t argue. But the general rule is that if one wishes to disagree with Truthseeker one should be a) strongminded and b) address the topic, science, and not one’s own private demons. And one should use only one pseudonym, not about six, as the poetic Dr. B is wont to do, which makes his furtive little sallies even more puzzling in meaning than his usual unedited writings. Apparently the Cuernavaca suicide bomber is currently banned from this site because we didn’t recognize the pseudo name “Michael David” as his! Perhaps an example of poetic justice.

  49. McKiernan Says:

    Lines written in Drumcliff dumb Cliffnotes courtyardCast a cold eye,On HIV, On AIDSBurro-man pass by,We don’t need no stinkin’ badges.

  50. Robert Houston Says:

    Call me a Pollyanna, but I happen to be an admirer of all four people who seem to have received unkind words on this thread: Truthseeker, Celia Farber, and the two Dr. B’s (Biernbaum and Bialy). When it started, there seemed to be a determined effort to make Celia Farber give up her journalistic independence and conform to a prescribed advocacy style. I think Dr. Mark Biernbaum was correct in supporting her freedom to maintain a personal independence her writings, or to present a view in more subtle and sophisticated ways than by issuing outright endorsements. Mark Biernbaum also has every right to maintain his own independence of mind without being required to conform to the Duesberg theory or any other, and should not be deprecated for his independence.In the case of Dr. Bialy, a certain indulgence of his personal idiosyncrasies is appropriate, as this is a scientific thinker and author of the top caliber. If Albert Einstein chose to post as “Bert Stein” or even “Snow White”, should one ban him? Certainly not, for there are many good reasons why worthwhile writers may choose to use pseudonyms, including “Truthseeker.” I for one would like to hear what the author of that great book on Duesberg has to say.The foxhunt seems to have shifted, however, into a chase after Truthseeker himself. He has permitted a very wide latitude of opinions on this blog, so it is unfair for Mark to charge that commentators are required to agree with TS “wholeheartedly.” I for one find Truthseeker to be remarkably perceptive and correct on most issues (with the occasional exception of views he shares with John Stossel), but this is not at all a requirement for posting. There are different styles of journalism, ranging from assertive to neutral. Contraary to some unseemly remarks by Mark Biernbaum, the reality is that Truthseeker happens to be an extraordinarily talented journalist, who has a distinguished record of publication in some of the most respected magazines in the world. He is also one of the finest writers in the history of the Web.

  51. Truthseeker Says:

    Cast a cold eye,On HIV, On AIDSBurro-man pass by,We don’t need no stinkin’ badges. That’s an example? We can do better than that, with beer in hand: Here is our Ode to HIV:Is there a paradigm that’s quite so sublimeAs HIV, HIV, HIV all the time?Is there a cash cow that’s freer with milkTo fund our black limos and smiles of pure silk?Top honors and prizes and plump grants galore,Key positions and invites pile up at our door,Graduate students rush to sign on by the score,And the patrons of charity never rate us a bore,And it’s no big surprise when our silliest papers Pass friendly inspection and go straight into Nature.Time Magazine to the Times, all media do shine The sun of their favor on our big bottom line,The White House is keen to endorse us as saviors,And the gays they just love our generous behavior,As we serve them with drugs to boost their immune systems,Too bad their livers will fail, and in the end death that will kiss them, For the world loves what we do, and no one complainsWhen HIV, HIV is the name of our game.OK its doggerel but at least its intelligible. OK, OK, entirely inappropriate and distasteful, and of no artistic merit of any kind. Obviously we cannot compete with the high art of Dr B, and we slink back in shame to our mundane non literary level, in line with Mark B’s and Dr. B’s C rating of our “journalistic efforts”.

  52. Truthseeker Says:

    Call me a Pollyanna, but I happen to be an admirer of all four people who seem to have received unkind words on this thread: Truthseeker, Celia Farber, and the two Dr. B’s (Biernbaum and Bialy). There were no unkind words addressed to Celia Farber here that we know of, Robert, but thank you for your “I’m OK, You’re OK” genial notice of virtue on all sides, with which we entirely agree. WIth the exception of Truthseeker, about whom it is for others to say, and they certainly are willing to say it, all the parties named are exceptionally lively and talented contributors to this blog, and if we ever gave any other impression, it was false and we grovel in apology. For the record, there is no more scientifically and editorially accurate and accomplished personage in the field than Dr. B, and no more thoughtful and open minded, and scientifically cautious poster than Mark B. Nor is there any more politically judicious critic of the world of HIVxAIDS than Celia Farber, whose reporting style in its lack of personal arrogance and desire to show rather than tell is without doubt likely to be the most influential of all in the current context. Finally, there is no better researched and appreciative commenter than yourself, so three cheers for all.

  53. Celia Farber Says:

    I went to the ocean today, and returned late. Like Robert Houston, I want to defend everybody, (with the possible exception of myself.)Precious rough gems–continue to be exactly as you are, and let’s try to find our way back to the moonlit path. Layers and layers–all human, all us, all here.No shame. Too water-logged to grasp what exactly has transpired but left with a basic urge to say g’night and… Don’t fight.

  54. Claus Says:

    This discussion has indeed been derailed, or rather the several strands seem to have intertwined, merged and gotten confused, a bit like the things Gallo thought to have discovered in the soup he cooked on Montagnier’s ingredients.1. AS a journalist Ms. Farber picks up the dirty laundry and shows it to us in all its ugliness and ill odour. AS a journalist, what could possibly be achieved by her attaching an implicit preface to her ‘expose’ to the effect of, ‘Before I undertook this or any other investigation, my belief was that the laundry is dirty. This article is written to make you share that belief’? Or an appendix telling us that, ‘It is my opinion this laundry is dirty, it should now be yours as well!’ 2. As a well-informed observer, private person or activist there may come a time when she has to ‘choose sides’. If I’m not mistaken, she has already agreed to that proposition. In the meantime, and I cannot stress this enough, she was the one who picked up the laundry and showed it to the general public. How could any activist statement of hers be stronger than that?! In fact anybody here should know -Dr. Biernbaum has already stated it – it will only make her a less powerful voice, a legitimate, wide open target for John and the devil, if she committed the folly of publicly articulating her personal opinion on a whim.As for Dr. Biernbaum, here are his statements: I and many, many others may see the HIV= AIDS paradigm as a failure , we are not yet, scientifically, in a position to either reject it outright or endorse an alternative hypothesis. Those on the inside of the HIV=AIDS paradigm, like Rebecca Culshaw, can reject the HIV= AIDS hypothesis based on her own work in the area. The rest of us can point to the many impossibilities and contradictions contained within the hypothesis , but as we are not actively performing research in the area, it would be a stretch to say much more than it appears as though the paradigm has failed .This is his negative critique. Following is the positive component:‘both Duesberg’s critique of HIV=AIDS and the Perth Group’s critique are extremely compelling’Dr. Biernbaum says in the clearest terms possible that it is his informed opinion the HIV=AIDS as a whole is a failure, and that Duesberg/Perth is a much Tetter alternative. What is the contention then? that he, as any good scientist should do, qualifies by saying ‘my conclusion based on my knowledge; a knowledge which is limited since it wasn’t conveyed to me by God, and thus a conclusion which is not immune to revision in light of new data.’? It is still his stated opinion, and as much as we can expect from any thoughtful person. Or is it the sentence, ‘we are not yet in a position to reject the paradigm outright’ that sounds weak-minded? As his next mail confirms, by ‘outright’ Dr. Biernbaum means ‘entire’; that is, every little separate brick in the fundament upon which the many-facetted HIV-AIDS colossus stands.Forgive me a quaint analogy here, but the special thing about HIV-AIDS, is that it resembles the Ring of Sauron: It was created in a bid for total control and power, but in the process of its making, much of Sauron’s own power went from him and into it. Thus that which could assure ultimate victory also proved his ultimate weakness and eventual downfall. HIV-AIDS is the Ring worn by the Western medical-industrial complex, arguably all of Western medicine as such. When it is destroyed, many things will fall with it, perhaps even a few un-thought of darlings of our own. The exchange concerning virus isolation between Perth, Lanka and Duesberg, and its ultimate implications, would be just a hint of things to come. Philosophizing with a hammer is certainly not for the weak-minded; it’s hardly fair to blame Dr. Biernbaum for recognizing this and wanting to proceed in a scientifically responsible fashion, brick by brick, before reducing the entire paradigm to rubble, although it may not agree with the disposition of some, including myself.

  55. Claus Says:

    Oops bad timing, I see everobody’s just shaken hands, and thus terminated this discussion, in the meantime. Sorry.

  56. Truthseeker Says:

    No problem, Claus. But could we have the bottom line of what you just wrote, in terms of action you would prefer? Perhaps it is just too early in the morning, but you seem to be occupying all four bases at once. One of them seems to be that no one should come out and say forthrightly that HIV is a crock, because it makes them too easy a target for the tyranny that currently prevails, and another is that when the whole edifice crumbles, the thunder will be heard around the world with unknowable consequences, is that right? Both these predictions are surely correct, but should they change our actions, that is what we are questioning. In our case it is a question of whether to keep the ? in HIV?AIDS, or substitute x (is not) decisively. Initially, we indeed felt softly softly catchee monkey, but the issue has emerged so clearly now with some basic impossibilities securely established (eg no heterosexual transfer, initial paper a disproof rather than proof, drugs’ short run success explained with long run damage confirmed in deaths, etc) that can be stated and understood rapidly, without hours of explanation, that we felt it was time to stand up and stand for, or we stand still. But you seem to join others in saying mere “journalists” cannot do this with effect. That is precisely how Harper’s played their hand in March, and obviously quite rightly. But now with that foothold, isn’t it time to take another step? Especially with the likes of Moore and Gallo/TAC providing the departure fulcrum now.

  57. Claus Says:

    With regard to your main point, whether it’s time to take another step, I defer entirely to your greater authority and greater experience, along with the likes of Dr. B and Ms. Farber: Maybe it IS time, and maybe you are the wiser to recognize this and call on your comrades to rally behind the unfurling standard now. I personally feel secure enough in my knowledge, which is surely not as extensive as many others here, to say HIVxAIDS!Even if, HIV does, by some unguessable turn of events turn out to = AIDS Gallo, et al are wrong, NOT me. This I can say with a priori certainty because their science has delivered no proof of it even according to its own rules. In so far as science and proper scientific method is a measure of fact, HIVxAIDS, since it’s not proven in any way, and in practical science that qualifies as a negativeBut I feel, perhaps mistakenly, you want us to take yet another step and say it’s absolutely impossible even in theory that anything, any further empirical discovery, could ever change that ‘x’ into an ‘=’ I must say – I think in agreement with Dr. Biernbaum – that step I do not feel qualified to take; and as a point of scientific method , if nothing else, I don’t think the possibility should ever be entirely excluded. Our opponents show their unscientific attitude precisely by refusing to even allow the idea that HIV=AIDS is not proven beyond all possible doubt. As a matter of fact, empirical as well as a priori, the over-all HIV=AIDS paradigm is a failure and a disgrace to the scientific ideal.For all practical purposes, that is enough to commit me.

  58. Dan Says:

    I gather from some of what I’m reading here is that a number of us are in agreement that the paradigm is a failure. But…we need to wait for the paradigm to be dismantled by our noble scientists before we can continue with our lives and live our lives as if the paradigm doesn’t exist. That’s fine for those who kneel before these scientists, whoever they may be. But I don’t see this as a purely scientific/medical issue. It’s far more a sociological and psychological issue. After more than two decades of lies, I’m ready to take the power away from those who are abusing it and help give it back to the people. The rest of you can discuss these matters in the halls of academia ad nauseum, the rest of us will get back to living…living our lives without the paradigm.

  59. Mark Biernbaum Says:

    I really would like to thank Robert Houston and Claus for clearly understanding what it is I was trying to say. They are both right when they point out that I have clearly, for myself rejected the HIV paradigm, and are both correct when they say that I would not reject it outright and publicly because I am not an expert in microbiology etc. They are also correct that I have stated that I cannot endorse alternative paradigms which have too little empirical support at this time. And they are both exactly right to echo my sentiment that if Celia did come out making clear statements about the failure of the paradigm (rather than simply exposing its dirty laundry), that she would indeed lose a great deal of the power that she has amassed over the last 20 years. I’m gratified for the understandings expressed.

  60. McKiernan Says:

    Truthseeker,Can you provide us a definitive explanation of what the x in hiv x aids signifies ?

  61. Truthseeker Says:

    Can you provide us a definitive explanation of what the x in hiv x aids signifies ? McK, thank you for proceeding with the discussion. Currently this shorthand signifies “The cause of “AIDS” is not HIV”.The expanded working definition currently would be “There is no valid scientific or medical reason to believe that HIV is the cause of “AIDS” (certainly not that its supposed detection in a patient with indicative symptoms is how “AIDS” is defined), and until one is provided by Robert Gallo or anybody else, there is every reason to believe it is not, and smart people conclude that the claim is void, and motivated by myriad non scientific impulses.”Will that do, in your view? We can always refine it. Thanks for asking.

  62. Truthseeker Says:

    Notice We regret to announce that comments which contain portions attacking Truthseeker or any other member of the Bones Club, either fully paid up or honorary, or indeed any poster here on a purely personal basis, will have those specific portions removed. Such comments and others which merely express the maladjusted psychic state of the author without contributing to the purpose of the blog – in fact distracting from it, and from the worthy efforts of other distinguished contributors here to deconstruct invalid science – are properly confined to email, and they will be responded to fully there. Anyone wishing to win public acceptance for their private emotions should try other blogs, such as Dean Esmay’s Dean’s World, or Hank Barnes’ Barnes World, see right hand margin list, although we cannot guarantee a welcome. Good luck!

  63. Michael David Says:

    HIV~AIDS means HIV does not cause AIDSHIVxAIDS means HIV times AIDS, and is incomprehensible to anyone viewing it.Most must think it a typo for your former HIV?AIDS, which at least made senseJust following instructions well adjusted psyche aka TS:”Any informed and thoughtful comments welcome, especially corrections and additions to the posts”

  64. Truthseeker Says:

    In fact, Harvey, a double wavy line would mean “does not necessarily equal”, not a single wavy line, which is how that symbol emerges on Mac OSX, the system used widely by all enlightened evaders of monopolistic robbery and plunder extracted by zillionaires in exchange for execrably based OS’s. We would have thought you knew that. Perhaps you know how to get a “not equals” sign on all systems, but we don’t. “x” seems the simplest common way of signing “not” as in “notHIV”. But all suggestions welcome.

    Harvey, is your name not the name of a large fantasy rabbit featured in a famous film of a bygone era? Why not wear it proudly, instead of using a meaningless pseudonym? We merely ask for information. There is nothing wrong with bearing the name of a rabbit, we emphasize. In fact, rabbits have often figured large in heroic incidents in history, such as the famous attack on Jimmy Carter by a swimming rabbit. Of course, that left the lingering question, was the rabbit bad tempered because it was out of its depth? We confidently believe not.

    The animal was clearly in distress, or perhaps berserk. The President confessed to having had limited experience with enraged rabbits. He was unable to reach a definite conclusion about its state of mind. What was obvious, however, was that this large, wet animal, making strange hissing noises and gnashing its teeth, was intent upon climbing into the Presidential boat.

    (From this page)

  65. McKiernan Says:

    HIV ≠AIDS

  66. Michael David Says:

    The “Harvey” you refer to was a pookah not a rabbit, and if you search and read (and listen) here, you might learn something else. Double wavy line? According to my impeccable sources, the symbol I proposed actually means: HIV is asymptomatic for AIDS (as t goes to infinity) and the one you have written “x” could mean HIC Cartesian product AIDS. So I was wrong, it is not unintelligible. Back to tending the orchids, Jeeves. Adios.

  67. Michael David Says:

    HIC Cartesian product AIDS.

    HIV Cartesian product AIDS.

    And I thought Dr. Bialy expressly forbade your naughty boy self from calling him Harvey, an appellative to which you have no right, Truthseeker.

    Ahora, adiós y para por siempre

  68. Truthseeker Says:

    The mathematical analysis from your new acolyte Darin Brown which you draw upon is beyond us, Dr Fu Manchu Emiliana Mexicale Generale Cuernavaca Attack Rabbit Zapata non-Harvey, even though unlike you we won mathematical scholarships in our youth. Please explain for the assembled crowd.

    But we like your wavy line now. “HIV asymptomatic for AIDS.” We like that, even though the correct phrase is “”HIV is asymptotic to AIDS”, according to Mr. Brown. Thanks for the suggestion, Dr.

    Meanwhile, we understand that you spent 48 hours with Francis Crick, in 1975 in his house in Cambridge. There are large numbers of people waiting for this anecdote.

    But don’t put it here, put it on the post about Crick. No doubt it concerns imbibing certain drugs together, judging from Wade’s book review, and our suspicions.

  69. Robert Houston Says:

    Some of the symbols discussed are used in truth tables. A single wavy line (~) means denial, as Michael David indicated. A double wavy line means approximately equal (musicians, for example, often use it to indicate an approximate Metronome setting for tempo). A straight vertical line is used to indicate alternative denial, i.e., plq means not both p and q. Thus, HIVlAIDS could indicate they’re unrelated. Although a slashed equal sign means not equal, that symbol is not available on most keyboards. Michael David’s statement that “‘Harvey’…was a pookah, not a rabbit” is not quite accurate. In the 1950 movie, Jimmy Stewart played Elwood Dowd, a congenial, seemingly ingenuous fellow who saw only the good in people and whose great friend was a 6’3″ invisible rabbit named Harvey, whom only he and few others could see. Harvey was actually a pookah (or puca) – a mischievous sprite in Celtic folklore, but a pookah can take different forms, and Harvey took the form of a giant rabbit. It’s one of my favorite movies, and actually a surprising deep and meaningful story in the form of a magical comedy.Speaking of hilarious entertainments, what a terrific comical poem Truthseeker gave us with his “Ode to HIV”! With his permission, I’m tempted to set it to music.

  70. Truthseeker Says:

    Why thank you, Robert, as the Nanny announced tonight on her network TV show, a household with “praise and rewards” is a happy household where children know their efforts will be appreciated and redouble them. We were about to hand over the entire blog in discouragement to Mark B and Harvey B, but now reinvigorated we will soldier on for a few more posts.

    However, since Dr B contributed the idea of using a wavy line and you also suggest a straight vertical line will do, we have been looking in vain for the first symbol on our Mac keyboard. At the moment we have found and inserted only the double wavy ‘equals’ line (option+x), which might serve (“does not exactly equal”). We did find the single vertical line (at b+shift+option) which will do, and may use it, but we prefer the single wavy line if we can locate it.

    Given the reasons advanced here to go slow on trumpeting HIV is not AIDS, we like the single wavy line as having one foot in both camps ie being correct but easily overlooked.

    OK we found it – Option+b = ∫.

    Thank you gentlemen.

  71. Robert Houston Says:

    Possibly the best suggestion is: HIV≠AIDS. ≠means “does not equal.” It is produced on a Mac keyboard by holding down the Option key while pressing the equals sign (=). Another possibility would be HIVxxAIDS, since x is commonly used as a sign of error. The horizontal wavy line known as a “swung dash” (~), which was suggested by Dr. Michael David, is too ambiguous. Although it means negation in some math contexts (e.g., ~p = not p), it also means similarity and equivalence in others (e.g., triangle A ~ triangle B). These meanings are contradictory! (Furthermore, in engineering it means “cycle” or c.p.s., and in lexicography it means “the entry word.”)A single vertical line ( l ) can be produced by a lower case L. However, few would know that it means alternative denial (p l q = not both p and q). In truth tables, a downward arrow betweem two items means joint denial (neither p nor q); that’s not bad, but does anyone know how to produce it on a keyboard?An attempt to combine a swung dash with a vertical line ( ∫ ) gives a result that is inappropriate. Mathematicians would recognize ∫ as the integral sign in calculus. The non-mathematical, simple English interpretation of “HIV∫AIDS” would thus be that HIV is integral to AIDS. The original “HIVxAIDS” is far better than that!

  72. Michael David Says:

    Robert,I beg to differ. I believe Truthseeker has by accident arrived at the perfect transformation of the HIV/AIDS complex designation because indeed the paradigm under question is exactly “that HIV is integral to AIDS.”

  73. Truthseeker Says:

    The horizontal wavy line known as a “swung dash” (~), which was suggested by Dr. Michael David, is too ambiguous. Although it means negation in some math contexts (e.g., ~p = not p), it also means similarity and equivalence in others (e.g., triangle A ~ triangle B). These meanings are contradictory! Mathematicians would recognize ∫ as the integral sign in calculus. The non-mathematical, simple English interpretation of “HIV∫AIDS” would thus be that HIV is integral to AIDS. Precisely the ambiguity sought, in the wake of the discussion here where authoritative advisors indicated that blatant banner unfurling might be premature, despite the continuing campaign successes of the past few months of the Scarlet Pimpernel of HIV∫AIDS.Like thousands of others privy to the facts about HIV∫AIDS, both scientific and political, and aware of the rational conclusion, Truthseeker is anxious not to stick his scrawny neck out too early, and thus get automatically discredited in the eyes of media arbiters such as the Columbia Journalism Review, well known for its decisive rulings on scientific matters, while at the same time doing his best to gain ultimate credit in the future for having been courageous enough to take a stand, when Humpty Dumpty finally comes tumbling down, whenever that is. Meanwhile, we do our little bit to help save the unfortunate patients who for some reason when informed by their busy doctor. who has not read any of the discussion of this topic, that they are about to die if they don’t take a combination of chemotherapeutic agents delivering among the most unpleasant side effects in the history of medicine, would otherwise salute and swallow.

  74. Michael David Says:

    Mr. Truthseeker,

    You have now managed to totally confuse me (an easy thing to do I admit), but is NAR devoted to “examining the faith in light of the literature” or “doing (your) little bit to help save unfortunates”, almost like Bob Gallo who is always “too busy saving lives” to examine his faith in light of even *one* piece of the literature, as he promised so many years ago?

    And if the clear, not ambiguous at all, meaning of the integral sign was your intention why did you not translate it so with its simple and elegant explanation when you first unfurled it?

    “Chance favors the prepared mind” as you probably often quote, so why not just admit that the unpredictable gods did you a favor when you “found” the “vertical wavy line with the dot”, that you did not recognize (despite the math scholarships in your youth) as an integral sign?

  75. Dan Says:

    I’m having trouble posting lately. I’d like to post to the “Science bamboozles the Left” article, but I may have to post it here due to the quirks I’m having with posting to anything on the sidebar. So here’s my post…crossing my fingers.

    In fact in the case of this study, the only hope of correction of the paradigm is that a host of taxi drivers and other lay souls – including wealthy patrons in particular – rise up and smite the Philistines as directed by the few generales in this revolutionary campaign.

    Truthseeker,

    I couldn’t agree with you more on this point.

    The scientists, doctors and journalists that have bungled this, to say the least, are not very likely to swallow their pride anytime soon and admit how complicit they were in this horror story.

    It’s up to the lay folk out there. We need to “go over their heads” on this issue, because it was them who helped to convince us to believe in the myriad deadly properties and abilities of this microbe. Going over their heads means getting the masses to wake up and question all they’ve been told. The power lies in the hands of “us”.

  76. Truthseeker Says:

    Evidently Dr. David you are confused because you do not read carefully enough to understand what is being said, despite a precision of expression you would otherwise appreciate. More than that, you produce conflicts where none exist that we can see. Is there is any conflict between assessing the faith in the light of the literature and saving the poor souls who are medicated according to a misguided dogma? Hard to see it.

    Secondly, surely you can understand that ambiguity is now our cowardly refuge, on the advice of distinguished posters such as yourself who have assumed authority on the subject? Perhaps we should reassess your advice, if even the giver cannot recall its justification.

    Thirdly, your assuming the mantle of an unpredictable but beneficent god seems a trifle grandiose, but apt enough on two fronts, the first adjective and also the fact, which we freely acknowledge in gratitude, that you were the first to suggest the wavy line. Changing it to an inclined wavy line, and introducing the savory confusion with the integral, had exactly the satisfying ambiguity we had sought, but was an inspiration derived from Robert Houston, and adopted only because of that additional appropriateness of HIV being integral to the current but inaccurate meaning of “AIDS” which you now supportively and correctly point out, but which as a mathematical scholar manqué we had already recognized, of course, otherwise we wouldn’t have adopted it.

    We hope that we have cleared up your confusion and that now we can take the spotlight off the pusillanimous strategy of this blog as advised by you and others not to make a bold, upfront statement that the HIV∫AIDS paradigm has been recognizable as a crock from the very first Gallo paper, for fear of frightening the children and attracting the attention of the thought police.

    “vertical wavy line with the dot”

    What dot is that?

  77. Michael David Says:

    Not at all Mr. Truthseeker. I fail to see any ambiguity at all in the use of the integral sign. It clearly means that the paradigm of HIV/AIDS is indeed correctly symbolized by a configuration of initials and a symbol that would translate, as Robert Houston, pointed out, “HIV is integral to AIDS”, which is quite elegant and perfectly appropriate to the use on the masthead, imho.If you knew the symbol was an integral sign why did you, as a professional journalist, not refer to it that way from the first instead of use language like this: we prefer the single wavy line if we can locate it. … Given the reasons advanced here to go slow on trumpeting HIV is not AIDS, we like the single wavy line as having one foot in both camps ie being correct but easily overlooked. OK we found it – Option+b = ∫.

  78. Michael David Says:

    And with regard to your point of not mutually incompatible: True, truthseeker, but the first is a reasonable goal, while the second is a form of self-glorification of the sort that is displayed by religious zealots who “believe” and who think of others as “poor souls that need saving”.Hence my confusion: Are you Truthseeker or John P. Moore?

  79. Truthseeker Says:

    Because it was the single wavy line that we were referring to, as part of the whole, the other part being the ‘integral to’, which was implied (but not expressed specifically) by the ∫ sign. Both implications being selectable individually, as in a black/white Ying/Yang sign, we thought it was just right, and credited you in part, as the instigator who first gave us the clue to the ultimate solution. Would it be in order for us to suggest a thorough reading of Steve Grossberg’s paper, Linking Mind to Brain?By the way, given your interest in mathematics, perhaps you know where to find the proof that David Ho used to calculate that the number of copies of HIV in a patient’s body after ten years would exceed the number of atoms in the universe?

  80. Truthseeker Says:

    Hence my confusion: Are you Truthseeker or John P. Moore? Both suffer from megalomania. You hadn’t noticed, as a member of the same club?

  81. Michael David Says:

    Just so I can now comprehend not having Steve’s insights into the mind/brain duality, which by the way was what Crick was all about in his last years. Never made much progress past the Buddhist analysis, however. Maybe he needed Steve Grossberg’s paper too?Be that as it might, I think I at last comprehend that you were intending some sort of extremely subtle conjunction that in your words <i>we like the single wavy line as having one foot in both camps, ie being correct but easily overlooked</i>.I now at last understand the <i>correct</i> to mean appropriate and the <i>easily overlooked </i>to refer to the fact that it could be mistaken (by a blind person) for the traditional slash.Still it leaves me to continue to wonder why you used three baby words when one accurate term did perfectly?

  82. Truthseeker Says:

    All those who wonder will have their curiosity satisfied, even at the cost of our admitting folly, by the Truthseeker, who is after all mortal, as are all humans, though not necessarily the questioner, who has shown no human failings and indeed earlier even claimed godlike status, and for all we know may deserve it, though not thus far in vocabulary or lucidity of expression, but their enquiries can be answered with alacrity only if their questions are made intelligible, perhaps through the abandonment of ellipsis or convoluted structure, or the removal of the assumption that the world is following breathlessly every word and thought of the questioner, or perhaps the adoption of simple direct Anglo Saxon phrasing rather than the use and misuse of esoteric words and mathematical symbols just looked up in a Web dictionary, or possibly the labeling of exhibits to ensure no confusion or misunderstanding, or perhaps even more effectively through the same procedure as we use to clarify our basic text, ie the use of baby words.

    However, in this case we have to ask, what “three baby words?” Also, again, what “dot”?

  83. Dan Says:

    Truthseeker,I’ve forgotten, what was wrong with HIV?AIDS. It’s simple, concise and communicative.

  84. Michael David Says:

    Dan

    For one thing (now seen in retrospect) it was slightly inaccurate as used by Truthseeker in his heading, because while perfectly intelligible as a glyph-like creation, the fact that it calls into such obvious question the conjoined HIV and AIDS of the usual HIV/AIDS makes it a bit odd to use in the context of questioning the orthodox HIV-AIDS paradigm itself. But after observing all the interesting fuss McK provoked, I am inclined to agree with you that HIV?AIDS works just fine, even if a trifle redundant.

    As to what caused the Truthseeker to stumble upon the new glyph with an “I found the single wavy line on the keyboard eureka”, I am now forced to note two items:

    item 1/ The suggestion I made above was that thanks to the gods (who operate by accident and purpose as Homer knew) his fingers found the perfect symbolic representation to use on his weblog — different enough in form to be distinctive, and close enough in meaning to the standard designation to avoid any confusion. Why he should continue to maintain that this was all intentional on his part is not a question I am qualified to comment upon.

    item 2/ I don’t think I ever heard an integral sign called a “wavy line” before, for the simple reason that it is not “wavy”.

  85. Truthseeker Says:

    Well, Dan, now you mention it… no, in fact, what was wrong with HIV?AIDS is that it did not contain a sufficient dichotomy, nor was it sufficiently discreet, with the desirable potential of avoiding reflexive counterattacks by the established supporters of HIV=AIDS, and their minions who control access to interesting events which this blog would record if we were not so often tempted away from our duties by the hourly arrival of postings from Dr. D, who unfortunately has the beguiling effect of allowing us to be right every time we answer him, a sensation which we now realize is the true underlying motivation of this blog, just as he himself divined, by earlier questioning our interest in helping the victims of HIV∫AIDS, presumably judging us by himself.In the case of the comment above, for example, we have the pleasure of informing him that a) he is incorrect in assuming once again that the discovery of the wavy line, and its transmutation into the angled wavy line, as finally solving the problem at hand, since it expresses the idea that the association may not be correct in terms of cause but also incorporates the idea of HIV being integral to AIDS, was to our mind in any way fortuitous, since it was to his own credit and to the credit of Robert Houston that this happy combination was realized in a flash of inspiration that while godlike occurred in the mind of Truthseeker, and this is why all three participants in this process deserve substantial credit, and will be given it when our annual prize ceremony takes place, to be sure, andb) if he truly thinks that the integral sign is straight and not wavy, he must revisit his Mexican optician or whoever supplied his current lenses.

  86. McKiernan Says:

    Wait, just a dang minute. What three participants ? McK asked the question: what does the x in HIV x AIDS means. So now we end up with some integral calculus sign no one understands. Get a clue. We’re out here stupid in stupidsville. You’re gonna be losing readership by the bazillions unless you’re willing to pass out slide rules.You gotta toss that sign TS.

  87. Michael David Says:

    TS, Nobody forces you to check your comments as often as you do. I just assumed you were killing time and having fun exercising your fingers since you are such a proficient typist (unlike poor two fingered me).A wave curve resembles a sine wave. The integral sign is sigmoidal in shape.

  88. Dan Says:

    At the risk of being labeled as a resident of “Stupidsville…it looks like HIV/AIDS, except with a bit of a flourish.

  89. McKiernan Says:

    Dan,I’ve forgotten, what was wrong with HIV?AIDS.

  90. Truthseeker Says:

    Precisely, Dan.

    The point of this Comment thread was to discuss the problem of whether or when to emerge as a decided opponent of the Fuhrer, now that Harpers has established a beachhead through which the Allied counterattack can pass and build up ground strength. However some distinguished posters advised that caution was best even at this stage, as exemplified by Ms Farber, whom they counted wise to sidestep the issue. In an effort to find a symbol that would satisfy this demand ie avoid being an easy target for those whose capacity for thought is limited to defending established wisdom, even in science, not to mention evade those enforcing censorship of the topic and intent on barring those who discuss it from events celebrating the latest victory in their global advance, we got sidetracked by many intriguing and erudite comments from a certain professorial poster into discussing the minutiae of Truthseeker’s limited thought process and neglible understanding of mathematical symbols, when really all that matters is what symbol might be better than ?, as in HIV?AIDS, or x, as in HIVxAIDS.

    Now you have confirmed that HIV∫AIDS gives precisely the impression we sought, Dan, so perhaps we can move on, since McK’s violent objection to ∫ is compromised by the fact he didn’t see the point of x. McK, ∫ means this: If you are a defender of the faith, we respect your feelings, You’re OK and we’re OK, it doesn’t matter that there may be flaws in your paradigm, we are sure they will be caulked and painted over, and by the way, think of us if you have a highly paid job to give out. If you are not a defender of the faith, but an openminded investigator who wishes to establish the true situation as regards this questioned paradigm, step out of the line of fire and climb aboard, we are ready to roll, in a counterattack that will eventually overwhelm Berlin if the moves are handled correctly.

    In fact, the push across enemy terrain has already started, and we have in hand already a string of significant victories in the past week or so to record but which unfortunately Dr David has prevented us from noting with his dazzling interventions.

  91. Robert Houston Says:

    We’ve heard some puzzling comments recently from Michael David: “I don’t think I ever heard an integral sign called a ‘wavy line’ before, for the simple reason that it is not ‘wavy’.” (7.20.2006, 7:36 pm) But the sign – ∫ – certainly is wavy. (“wavy: curving alternatively in opposite directions; undulating” – Random House Unabridged Dictionary.) “A wave curve resembles a sine wave. The integral sign is sigmoidal in shape.” (7.20.2006, 9:24 pm) But the sigmoidal shape (an S) is a wave pattern. Has Dr. David never heard of sigmoidal waves? I’m sorry I ever mentioned the “integral sign.” It started Dr. David on an odd inquisition, trying to make something of Truthseeker’s practical description of his discovery of how to produce it on a Mac keyboard (“option + b = ∫ “). Frankly, Dr. David’s repeated needling on this seems rather petty. Truthseeker’s apparent effort was to seek a symbol that would be similar to the current slash (/) but would incorporate suggestions of dubiousness. He assumed from Dr. David’s comments that a wavy line (~) would indicate negation. (The man of science did not inform TS, however, that it also means similarity.) The fact that the wavy slash ( ∫ ) is also the integral sign made it seem additionally appropriate as a way of discussing the dubious beliefs of those who think HIV is integral to AIDS. This, at any rate, is my understanding of the rationale.This line of thinking is rather subtle, however, and probably inapparent to the normal reader. Moreover, the meaning of a horizontal wavy line (~) is only occasionally denial: especially in geometry it usually means similarity or equivalence. Even if it always meant negation, that meaning would not apply to a vertical sign. Thus, the expression HIV∫AIDS, though pretty, does nothing to call their junction into question.What would? Answer: the faith-based and economic nature of the union. Here, then, are two suggestions:1) Faith-based union: HIV†AIDS.2) Economic merger: HIV$AIDS.

  92. Michael David Says:

    Robert,I stand corrected. The sign is decribed correctly as a wavy line. And indeed it was all quite petty.However, the other point…the major one, and the one that was addressed to you is not quite so trivial. At least it is not any more trivial than all this playing with ways of rewriting HIV/AIDS.The “HIV is integral to AIDS” glyph of the moment does not express any ambiguity at all. It is, as I wrote in bold above, close enough in meaning and distinctive enough in design to be 100% appropriate without any back breaking explanations.

  93. Claus Says:

    I think Dr. D gave up his position, however petty, too quickly. It is at least arguable that the sign in question is not wavy in the sense of alternately curving in opposite directions. The sign is properly described as curve-straight-curve, rather than curve-curve-curve like an ‘S. The idea of ‘wave’ conveys this image of something always moving and changing into its opposite with no breaks or straight lines to arrest its flux.But now onto something less petty: I really like the idea of ‘faith-based union’. The Christian cross, however, singles out a particular religion, plus the immediate association is likely to be HIV-death-AIDS. Is there a sign for ‘consensus’, which is what’s being expressly appealed to?

  94. Truthseeker Says:

    “Petty”

    In other words, “seems relatively unimportant to me”? Perhaps so, but isn’t the fact that it is important to Dr D to get things straight, indeed, every little thing straight , however seemingly unimportant to some, the essence of the spirit of good science and of corrective dissent, the spirit which motivates those who detect error and worse in the ruling paradigm which is under examination in this blog?

    Is Dr. D not the shining example of what is needed in this realm, and is not his banner of “Acuuracy above all!” the one under which all those who this blog attempts in its modest way to support and celebrate are marching forward, swords unsheathed, to do battle with the Philistines?

    Anyway, we are certainly flattered and encouraged by his attention and that of other distinguished posters’ here to this minutium, if that is the right word, for we share Dr D’s sense that there is often great significance in the details, and it is important to get them right.

    I really like the idea of ‘faith-based union’. The Christian cross, however, singles out a particular religion, plus the immediate association is likely to be HIV-death-AIDS. Is there a sign for ‘consensus’, which is what’s being expressly appealed to?

    Darn, we liked the idea and were almost thinking of adopting it. Is a cross always a Christian one? After all, crucifixion by the ancient Romans was a cruel punishment meeted out to Jewish revolutionaries in general, as well as thieves and other criminals. All the associations – with religious faith, with cruelty, and with death – seem entirely appropriate. However, we conclude it isn’t subtle enough to avoid rousing the natives.

  95. Claus Says:

    I liked the idea. Unfortunately the Christians have monopolized this symbol ever since the crucifixion of the Revolutionary Jew, who on the cross sent one thief up and the other down. However, the horizontal bar of the cross, closer to North than South represents the idea of the upper trinity at the expense of the lower, and perfect symmetry between above and below is to be found instead in the David Star (six pointed) – which, as everybody knows now courtesy of the Da Vinci Code, is also a symbol of Venus. Thus, the Christian cross has come to symbolize the persecution of both pagan and Christian faith, the first in virtue of its asymmetry, the second because of the suffering Christ, whereas we are looking for the opposite, a symbol of Faith persecuting Reason.And if the above hasn’t made it quite clear, I consider no discussion of symbols petty or irrelevant.

  96. McKiernan Says:

    Truthseeker,Claus is on your side. Good Luck.

  97. Claus Says:

    My VCR has just confirmed my suspicion that I’ve done a great injustice to both the Da Vinci Code and Venus by assigning her the six pointed star. That was one point too many, or alternatively two too few.

  98. Robert Houston Says:

    Here’s one last lonely vote to bring back “HIV?AIDS”.No one, not even the eminent Dr. Michael David, has submitted a single substantive reason for using the integral sign. Yet it’s already in the masthead and being used throughout subsequent articles. Why? What is the rationale for a dissident AIDS website to use a logo that affirms: “HIV is integral to AIDS”? Does anyone except Truthseeker and Dr. David with their esoteric reveries find any rational justification in this?Contrary to what Claus claims, the cross is an ancient sign of faith that long predated Christianity, e.g., the Ankh cross. (A cross can be produced easily on a Mac keyboard by holding down the option key and pressing “t”.) Such a symbol would back up the mission statement of “examining the faith…”But if this is too religious, then how about a backslash to show an alternate way of viewing things (“HIV\AIDS”)? Or just use a plain slash as a division sign to show that HIV is the dividend and thus the source of profit from AIDS. Yes, even the standard “HIV/AIDS” suggests more of a critique than the new logo affirming HIV is integral .

  99. Claus Says:

    I never said the ‘Christian’ cross (the symbol’s general shape) didn’t pre-date Christianity – that faith has come up with very little that’s original. I did suggest, however, that the associations it produces are likely to be Christian, first and foremost ‘death’. Secondly, ‘suffering and sacrifice for salvation through faith’. Thirdly’, the Christian faith’s persecution of other faiths’, i.e. there’s only one God and he’s jealous to boot. Faith’s persecution of Reason is also a possible association, although hardly the first, and in any event it would still be in form of the Christian faith’s persecution of Reason. Unless one is a Freemason, I doubt very much that Ancient Egypt, Babylonia or Tammuz is what comes to mind. And what we want is something people with a less esoteric background can relate to no? As far as I understand, the currently chosen sign is partly representative of T’s scorn of our general cowardice in advocating a cautious approach to the main question of proof and disproof of causation.”Secondly, surely you can understand that ambiguity is now our cowardly refuge, on the advice of distinguished posters” (Truthseeker)But the integral sign also suggests the well known circular definition of AIDS which makes the proposition impossible to disprove: ‘where there is no HIV there is no AIDS’ (since HIV is integral to it). And conversely, where there is HIV there is AIDS since HIV is what makes an otherwise non-AIDS thing AIDS). We perceive the devilish cleverness of this whole circular construct, which forms the basis of Prof. Moore’s moral truths: To deny the causative effect of HIV in AIDS is a contradiction in terms because HIV is the ingredient without which AIDS would no longer be AIDS. This is indeed ‘causation’ in the sense that HIV ’causes’ a non-AIDS thing to become AIDS, and so if we deny HIV ‘causation’, we deny existence, and to deny the existence of AIDS = AIDS denialism. And AIDS denialism is undoubtedly irresponsible and immoral, since people definitely are dying for real.

  100. Michael Says:

    I just tried to post HIV (is less than sign) AIDS, but the computers html vehemently disagreed, and would not even let me post it. So then I tried: E for evidence is (less than) HIV or AIDS, as in E (less than) HIV/AIDS, but again the HTML would not let me dare to post it, so then I tried RE (rethinkers evidence)is (greater than) HIV equals AIDS, or: RE>HIV=AIDS, which, as you can see, the system agrees with this one so I think that counts as a vote.or How about I>M I for Intelligence is (greater than) M for Morons, or0=HIV=AIDS which the computer also agrees with, or HIV/AIDS? Ouch, my brain hurts, How about RE+I>MMB for Rethinkers Evidence plus Intelligence is > greater than MMB for Mainstream Morons BullshXt, orhow about RE>HIV=AIDS meaning Rethinkers Evidence is greater then HIV/AIDS, or ,or 0=HIV/AIDS or HIV/AIDSNOT or Ouch, my brain really hurts, “Emergency Call for Dr. Brown and Dr Culshaw”.

  101. Truthseeker Says:

    The sign looks rather like a snake, too, which is also why it seems appropriate.

  102. Robert Houston Says:

    For some reason the snake, which is a symbol of Satan, is featured in the two signs of medicine: the caduceus (two snakes wrapped around a winged staff), and the staff of Aesculapius (one snake around a forked staff). The latter, in fact, has been the official insignia of the American Medical Association. Here’s a Mac keyboard approximation: Â¥ (option key + y). Another approximation would be the sign in calculus for the closed integral (integral around a closed path): §. (On a Mac it’s option + 6.)In HIV†AIDS I like the cross as a symbol of faith and persecution, i.e., crucifixion of both the suffering faithful and the persecuted dissenters. There are two forms of the “does not equal” sign: ≠and ‡, and the latter form contains a cross. (It’s produced on a Mac by: option + shift + 7.) Thus, HIV‡AIDS.Another intriguing sign would be a slash with zeroes (formed by option + shift + R on a Mac.) Thus, HIV‰AIDS.These are a few provocative alternatives to the seemingly pro-conventional “slash with panache” (∫).

  103. Robert Houston Says:

    HIV%AIDS!

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