A common question, rhetorical or otherwise, that skeptics are asked about alternative medicine is, “What’s the harm?” It’s seemingly an effective ploy for some modalities, so much so that years ago Tim Farley felt obligated to try to answer the question on a website (whatstheharm.net) that catalogues examples of the harm alternative medicine, supernatural and paranormal beliefs, and other pseudoscience do. After all, most homeopathy (at least anything diluted greater than around 12C, at least) is water, without any remaining remedy, effective or otherwise. On the other hand, some homeopathic remedies are adulterated, and some of the “less potent” (i.e., less dilute) remedies might actually have something in them. (homeopathic belladonna for teething babies, anyone?) Moreover, there can be grave harm when the use of ineffective alternative therapies keeps a person from using effective medical therapy. We have seen this over the years, for example, when parents following religions that do not believe in medicine and tell their adherents to rely solely on god for healing, which, sadly, does not work so well for diabetic ketoacidosis, pneumonia, or leukemia. Dead children, however, do not appear to deter belief in such quackery.

File this one as another example of “What’s the harm?” Behold the sad, sad case of Ebed and Christine Delozier and their 18-month-old daughter Hope Elizabeth Delozier, who died in February:

According to a criminal affidavit from Magisterial District Judge Fred Wheaton’s Office, the couple was staying at a camper along Hiduk Road in Herrick Township, a property owned by the Hope Baptist Church. Ebed Delozier brought the toddler to the hospital, who was found to be in cardiac arrest.

Despite efforts made by the medical staff to save her, the child was pronounced dead a short time later. No immediate cause of death was noted.

Criminal investigators were told by a registered nurse on staff that the victim’s mother, Christine Delozier, and aunt, Rebecca Delozier, arrived at the hospital shortly after the victim. The nurse said that the victim’s parents made it clear they were against antibiotics and other chemicals associated with modern medicine.

While emergency room staff worked on the toddler, who was not breathing, the nurse said she overheard Christine Delozier making statements such as, “You’re putting holes in her” and, “You’re putting chemicals in her.”

Yes, the doctors at the emergency room were doing exactly that—to try to save the toddler’s life! In the case of a cardiac arrest, if there’s any hope at all of reversing the situation and saving the victim’s life, it involves some rather radical, invasive medicine. So how did Hope reach this state? It started with an ear infection:

The nurse said that while speaking with the family, they related the child had been sick for two weeks and was displaying symptoms consistent with an earache, headache and a fever. She told police the family indicated they had been treating the little girl with a homeopathic approach and were using herbal treatments to care for her.

Although most children recover from otitis media, which is what Hope appears to have had, and mild cases don’t even require antibiotics, the key to treating children with mild otitis media is close followup, because antibiotics become necessary if the child doesn’t get better quickly and especially if the child’s symptoms worsen, as Hope’s did. In cases of severe otitis media, antibiotics are still necessary, and sometimes tympanostomy tubes are even required. That’s because, if left untreated, severe otitis media can result in a variety of complications, including but not limited to:

  • Chronic suppurative otitis media
  • Postauricular abscess
  • Facial nerve paresis (paralysis of the facial nerve)
  • Labyrinthitis
  • Mastoiditis
  • Temporal abscess
  • Intracranial abscess
  • Meningitis
  • Cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) leak

Unfortunately, of these Hope developed one of the most severe complications:

An autopsy performed on March 26 at Lourdes Hospital in Binghamton, NY, conducted by Dr. James Terzian, indicated that the 18-month-old toddler had died of “streptococcus pneumoniae meningitis”, which caused a cerebral abscess and terminal cerebral edema. The meningitis reportedly originated in a left ear infection, which had been left untreated by conventional antibiotic therapy.

Dr. Terzian noted “a simple antibiotic would have saved the victim’s life.”

Based upon these findings, Bradford County Coroner Thomas Carman ruled the death as a homicide.

Yes, this child died of something that could almost certainly have been prevented with a bit of that old evil “Western medicine” in the form of amoxicillin. Moreover, the child was sick for approximately three weeks before her death, and, given the severity of her condition, likely suffered horribly, first from pain in the ear and then from the symptoms of advancing meningitis that led to an intracranial abscess and swelling of the brain. Given that the child was being treated with only homeopathic remedies, her illness and death proceeded without treatment even to ease her symptoms. The mother reported that her child had had fevers ranging from 99° to 103° F during that time with occasional vomiting. Five days before her death, the child started draining fluid from her ear, most likely from an ear abscess having ruptured through the tympanic membrane. Finally:

Delozier kept treating the child with natural and herbal treatments to boost her immune system. On the day of the toddler’s death, Delozier laid the little girl down for a nap. Roughly one hour later, she observed her daughter’s breathing to be labored and shallow, taking one breath approximately every 10 seconds. The toddler eventually stopped breathing and went limp.

“I watched her die,” Delozier told police.

She performed CPR on the victim for approximately 30 minutes, at which time Ebed Delozier arrived home and took the child to the emergency room.

By which time it was far, far too late to save Hope. After 30 minutes of CPR and a trip to the emergency room, she had almost certainly sustained, at minimum, severe neurological damage and was most likely dead by the time she reached the emergency room. Another thought comes to mind: WTF was Delozier thinking as her daughter’s breathing slowed to 6 breaths/minute. Didn’t she figure out that something was very, very wrong at that point? Her story implies that, at some level, she must have realized that something was very wrong. It’s not clear how long she watched her daughter’s breathing, but it sounds like the Cushing reflex, which occurs in response to increased intracranial pressure and involves increased blood pressure, lowered pulse, and slower, irregular breathing. Although I don’t like citing Wikipedia for medical matters, the Wikipedia entry on the Cushing reflex has about as apt a statement of the significance of this finding as I’ve ever heard: “Whenever a Cushing reflex occurs, there is a high probability that death will occur in the near future (seconds to minutes). As a result, when a Cushing reflex is detected, immediate care is needed.”

Of course, Delozier is not trained in medicine; so it’s unreasonable to expect her to recognize the Cushing reflex or realize how serious it is when someone breaths like this, but even lay people know that breathing once every ten seconds is too little, particularly if it keeps slowing down. Certainly Delozier recognized that there was something badly wrong with Hope’s breathing. If Hope had been taken to the hospital while still breathing, she might still have had a chance, although probably relatively small. Instead, Delozier did exactly as she stated, and we have no reason to doubt this part of her story. She sat there and watched her daughter die without intervening to try to stop the process.

Not surprisingly, Delozier distrusted “Western medicine,” which meant she was also antivaccine:

Interviews conducted with Christine Delozier on March 24 and March 30 found that her child had been born at home without the use of a midwife and from there on, had never seen a medical doctor, nor did she receive any vaccinations. She said her views against modern medicine stem from her childhood as she was raised without taking pills or receiving shots.

She told police she has done her own research on vaccinations and found they can be related to death, SIDS, autistic disorders, immune disorders and shaken baby syndrome. While her views are not religiously motivated, she said she does feel God is the ultimate healer.

So once again we see the toxic combination of fundamentalist religion and belief in alternative medicine resulting in the preventable suffering and death of a child who could have been saved with the fairly straightforward use of an antibiotic. True, in this case, religion appears to have played a supporting role rather than the primary role, but it’s clear it was important. Be that as it may, unfortunately such is the power of beliefs like this that even now, three and a half months after Hope’s death, Christine Delozier has learned nothing and knows nothing new:

Newswatch16 spoke with Christine Delozier at length at her home on Hiduk Road near Wyalusing. She declined to go on camera, but did explain her religious convictions, how she still mourns the loss of her daughter, and about her lack of trust in the American medical community.

“If doctors expect people to trust them, they need to become trustworthy,” Delozier said. “People are a lot healthier in countries where doctors aren’t paid by patients.”

With tears streaming down her face, she went on to say, “I believe the medical community is at least the third, maybe the first, leading killer in the United States.”

Wait a minute. What does she mean when she says people are a lot healthier in countries where patients aren’t paid by patients? Does she mean countries like Canada or the U.K., which have single payer systems in which the government pays its citizens’ medical expenses? It’s a pretty safe bet that, had Hope been seen by a physician in Canada or England, for example, she would have been prescribed antibiotics and treated pretty much the same way that local pediatricians in Bradford County would have treated her. The treatment of otitis media is fairly standard. As for the trope that medicine is the leading killer in the US, to me it sounds as though Ms. Delozier has been reading too much Mike Adams.

The fact is that the Deloziers’ extreme medical neglect killed their daughter. Period. Sadly, cases like this, though thankfully uncommon, aren’t nearly as unusual as they should be in the US, where a warped view of religious freedom produces an extreme deference to religious beliefs as a justification for the medical neglect children.

In fact, when I first posted this on various social media, at least a couple of people responded by pointing out to me that cases like this aren’t rare but that rather what is rare is that the parents are actually being charged with involuntary manslaughter and endangering the welfare of children. For example, in 2009 Catherine and Herbert Schaible let one of their children die at age 2 months of a treatable pneumonia, which had developed after a cold. Even though the child got sicker and sicker, they refused to take him to a doctor because of their religious beliefs. The courts, bending over backwards not to take the rest of their children away, put the Schaibles on probation and granted them custody if they would promise to take their children to the doctor when they are ill. In 2013, another of the Schaibles’ children died in almost exactly the same manner, of pneumonia that developed after a cold. He was 7 months old.

Indeed, one can’t help but wonder whether, if the Deloziers had asserted that it was their religious belief not to use doctors or medicine (as the Schaibles, who belonged to a church that explicitly forbade its members from using conventional medicine, did) rather than saying that she just didn’t trust doctors and medicine, they would be facing the serious charges they’re facing. As it is, I highly doubt the Deloziers will ultimately serve significant jail time even if convicted. Parents who kill their children through medical neglect like this rarely do. Whatever the case, the Deloziers’ next court date is today.


  1. #1 Gray Falcon
    June 17, 2015

    Sorry about that. I tend to react badly to false accusations.

  2. #2 Mrs Woo
    just outside Wooville
    June 17, 2015

    Well, if herbert sticks the flounce it will be irrelevant, but, I believe that awareness of some practices influencing prescribing practices were noted, and much stiffer restrictions put in place. I, personally, believe pharmaceutical companies should not be allowed to advertise to the general public. However, in all fairness, since supplement companies get to send twenty-page, full color brochures vaguely hinting at studies that may or may not be accurately portrayed, filled with testimonials from possibly non-existent patients and then sell the miracles directly to their marks er, um, customers from wonderful protectors of health freedom like “Dr. Whittaker,” “Dr. Mercola” (and honestly there’s a Dr. Merola running around relying on confusion) and others… it would be lovely to reign in their “liberties” as well as ending direct-to-consumer advertising by drug companies.

    As a rational observer, I believe that one of the biggest contributions to all this patient mistrust is alternative medicine advertising which looks like “research” and “unbiased information” to uninformed patients doing Google searches. The mother in this case was raised by a mother who followed alternative medicine, then to further reinforce her thinking, probably spent any time on the internet in echo chambers that further confirmed her worst fears. She didn’t have a balanced view of medicine – one that knew doctors are not paid for the drugs they prescribe (unlike chiropractors andnaturopaths, who have their “prescriptions” right there in ttheir offices), that many doctors, especially since Vioxx, prefer to prescribe drugs that have a few years post approval, or that many insurances demand all generic (therefore, older) drugs be tried and fail before name brand, newer drugs are offered.

    The U.S. medical system sucks. I am known (and sometimes mocked, in daily life) for insisting a system more like our Medicare system, opened for all residents, would be a major improvement. I cannot fathom how a supposedly wealthy country like ours can be so incapable of providing something so basic to its citizens. I won’t argue that.

    This woman, though, had a very unrealistic view of doctors and how they care for patients, and herbert, for whatever reason you do, too. Outliers are never good examples of anything as a whole, and people can cherry pick examples to make anything look like a dismal failure or glowing perfection, especially something as complicated as “modern medical treatment” (especially if it is defined broadly).

  3. #3 Harold Gaines
    Kansas, USA
    June 17, 2015

    On a tangential topic, I was under the impression that antibiotics were ineffective for ear infections. Period. I was given the impression that this was one of the greatest misuses of antibiotics.

    Obviously, I was wrong, but perhaps all the warnings about over-prescription of antibiotics has had a downside.

  4. #4 MI Dawn
    June 17, 2015

    Well, one good thing we learned – herbert doesn’t live in the US. Now if he’ll only stick the flounce. Though, I do believe it’s poor form to flounce after labeling us all pharma shills.

  5. #5 KayMarie
    June 17, 2015


    I never saw any report that say every ear infection would always be harmless and would always go away on its own and no matter what no one should ever give a kid an antibiotic.

    The way I read it was most of the time the antibiotic is not needed and many of the infections are not bacterial so it won’t help.

    So don’t prescribe them right off the bat for anything with the set of characteristics of those infections that are unlikely to be a problem. Only prescribe immediately when there are these symptoms that something more serious is going on or when the symptoms do not resolve on their own in X time.

    But I can see where some of the reporting could lead you to think NEVER prescribe rather than reduce the prescribing.

    We do overuse antibiotics but all of the use less come with guidelines on when they really are needed. It was never meant to be be a never use them again at all because they are always in every case completely and totally useless.

  6. #6 ken
    June 17, 2015

    FYI (ignore if not interested)
    CHOP Expert Commentary
    Antibiotic Overuse in Kids: Lessons Learned
    Theoklis E. Zaoutis, MD, MSCE

  7. #7 AdamG
    June 17, 2015

    So herbert flounced after being presented with an actual citation contradicting his assertions? I’m shocked.

  8. #8 doug
    June 17, 2015

    In his early post(s), herbert claimed to be in Canada. Some of the words he used were clearly French or very close thereto, some of his spelling was British, and he had problems with plurals, so I’m baffled as to where he actually might be or be from.

    Harold, if you haven’t already, do follow the link I posted at 161. It really is a good discussion, with analysis of the pros and cons of how and with what to treat AOM.

    Mrs. Woo, it is my understanding that there are only two countries where advertising aimed at end uses of prescription drugs is legal – the US and New Zealand. Though apparently the rules aren’t enforced as strictly as they should be here in Canada, it is illegal, but advertising of all manner supplements and wooish methods are pretty common. It sort of seems that if it is real medicine the advertising is illegal, but if it is pseudo/mock medicine it is OK.

    This woman, though, had a very unrealistic view of doctors and how they care for patients, and herbert, for whatever reason you do, too.

    Yes, herbert is very much part of the problem.

  9. #9 Johnny
    June 17, 2015

    Just to clear things up. Homeopathy is utter bollocks, just like the idea that a little bit of flu in a vaccine is supposed to prevent flu. it doesn’t and never did, the research tells us and decades of trials trying to make people ‘catch flu’ by spraying virus aerosols up people’s noses has failed to prove the contagion theory over and over again.

    This thread is not news, it is just another vain attempt to validate a flawed vaccine on the back of a sad death.

    Just like the one death from measles in Germany recently

  10. #10 Johnny
    June 17, 2015

    As for NobRed and his ‘friendly fire’ he has to stop playing with it, it’s simple, he will go blind if it carries on. Some one give him some herbs or something, I am surprised he can even see his screen.

  11. #11 shay
    June 17, 2015

    If false “johnny” ever paid attention, he’d realize that this thread is about antibiotics, not a vaccine.

  12. #12 KayMarie
    June 17, 2015


    Although one would think that if one completely rejects the notion that germs cause disease one would be against antibiotics as well as vaccines.

    But it could very well be he doesn’t know there is a difference between the two, although if I give him the benefit of the doubt there is a comment that mentions a vaccine in it so maybe he’s replying to that not the main theme of the article (or he’s just looking for any excuse to spew on any given thread).

  13. #13 Narad
    June 17, 2015

    Slashes are acceptable/appropriate in lots of cases

    Putting on my editorial hat for a moment, the use of the virgule in text denotes nonexclusive “or.” It is nearly always avoidable in formal writing, the exception being when the corrections get to be more clumsily distracting than just letting it stand after a certain point.

    In particular, this implies that the sense “per,” e.g., “km/s” (or, worse, “m/s/s”) is right out unless there are no suitable superscripts available. Like here, where some genius has WordPressed the buttons to exterminate <sup> tags.

  14. #14 TBruce
    June 17, 2015

    In his early post(s), herbert claimed to be in Canada. Some of the words he used were clearly French or very close thereto, some of his spelling was British, and he had problems with plurals, so I’m baffled as to where he actually might be or be from.

    It’s likely that herbert is a Francophone Canadian. His writing style is similar (IMHO) to that of other Francophone Canadians who have commented here. This would also explain the British spelling. Most likely he lives in Quebec or New Brunswick, but not necessarily.

  15. #15 JP
    June 17, 2015

    Putting on my editorial hat for a moment, the use of the virgule in text denotes nonexclusive “or.” It is nearly always avoidable in formal writing, the exception being when the corrections get to be more clumsily distracting than just letting it stand after a certain point.

    I had a professor in college who had a real bee in his bonnet about using the virgule pretty much at all in writing, so the use was beaten out of me (metaphorically speaking) at a young age. He found it lazy.

    F’r instance, instead of writing, say, “bees and/or bonnets,” I was specifically instructed to write “bees or bonnets or both.” It is nicer to read, I think.

  16. #16 JP
    June 17, 2015

    ^ I was fairly eviscerated in his office, actually, over a piece of writing which he did not feel was up to snuff, at least compared to my usual efforts. Even then I got some useful pointers.

    He was always jealous of the late Professor Lewitsky, though, who could actually bring himself to make students cry of shame over bad writing.

  17. #17 darwinslaapdog
    Big city
    June 17, 2015


    I see NP’s all the time at my large regional medical center. I think whoever said that about rural areas and NP’s was just saying that sometimes there is only a NP in some rural areas that can’t get a full time doc.

  18. #18 Narad
    June 17, 2015

    ^ Oh, I also forgot that W—press automatically logoizes invocations of its magic name. I wonder whether Word​press thought about ​.

  19. #19 Narad
    June 17, 2015

    ^ Well, apparently it did consider U+200B, but only to break the HTML escape for &.

  20. #20 doug
    June 17, 2015

    It’s likely that herbert is a Francophone Canadian.

    That was what I initially thought, but would that explain the lack of proper plurals?

  21. #21 doug
    June 17, 2015

    I though Virgule was Dante’s guide through Hell.

  22. #22 ann
    June 17, 2015

    You are starting to wake up. YES this is possible because of the hyper-efficient public relation firm that are able to pretty much mold what an american thinks

    Then why does everybody in the entire country hate the very thought of psychotropic medications, just exactly as they always have?

    No, it is NOT possible that the number of people on SSI/SSDI increased by two-and-a-half times between 1987 and 2007 because of meds-induced mental illness. Furthermore, it is UNTRUE. They changed the eligibility criteria in 1985. That accounts for most of the increase. The rest is due to demographic, socioeconomic, and similar factors.

    How dense are you that I can keep explaining that without making any impression on you at all?

  23. #23 ann
    June 17, 2015

    but I am sure most american really think they are being informed (and not entertained and brainwashed)

    I find it distressing to be accused of being brainwashed by people who are mindlessly repeating CCHR/Scientology propaganda about psychiatric meds.

  24. #24 herr doktor bimler
    June 17, 2015

    1 million dollar to sensibilise doctors
    Is this a word-for-word translation from some other language? “Sensibilise doctors” is a popular phrase among cheap-drug spam sites, but nowhere else.

  25. #25 herr doktor bimler
    June 17, 2015

    pharmaceuticals throlls

    “Throll” is perhaps a portmanteau of Troll + Thrall, and I am adding it to my vocabulary.

  26. #26 Denice Walter
    June 17, 2015

    I was about to write:
    ‘ Is throll an enthralled troll.. a troll thrall?’

    Sounds like somethingthat would be featured in the Game of Thrones.

    I use the / @ RI exclusively not in any of my more formal writing endeavors. I kind of like the way it looks.

  27. #27 Dangerous Bacon
    June 17, 2015

    “But if even 1 person saw the light from reading the information I posted that it would have been at least worthwhile.”

    No doubt oodles of people have contacted you privately to say that they agree with your drivel, but can’t say so publicly due to potential harassment. Isn’t that usually the way it goes?

  28. #28 sadmar
    June 17, 2015

    @ Barefoot #200

    Fwiw, I agree the arguments with trolls are mainly skipping-phonograph-record repetitions, tiring and (imho) pointless. I have to imagine the minions have better things to do with their time…

    But I must object to labeling anti-vaxers as Luddites – since the typical contemporary use of that term springs from, and reproduces, a highly ideological, regressive, and false view of history. The actual historical Luddites were not opposed to scientific or technical progress, just the use of technology to throw them into poverty. (http://tinyurl.com/3xf3mgz). To employ them as a signifier of waging a wrong-headed and pointless war against progress is to demean the intelligence of industrial workers, and trivialize or cover-up the social horrors of the early industrial era in general and the mills in particular.

    Besides, anti-vaxers aren’t beholden to an anti-progress or even anti-science ideology. They invoke ‘older is better’ rhetoric only opportunistically, as they will invoke ANY and ALL ideas opportunistically — no matter how mutually exclusive and contradictory — as long as they can twist them somehow to support their bedrock conviction that vaccines are definitive sources of harm to their special snowflake offspring.

    Thus, they present Wakefield and the aluminum research at UBC as ‘true’ science, and cast all the evidence against their beliefs as corrupt propaganda advanced by the shills of ‘Big Pharma’. They are convinced that the progress of science, left uncorrupted, will validate their position and bring forth the ‘cures’ for their ‘damaged’ kids Big Pharma is repressing in its quest for vaccine profits. Yeah, that’s ‘unscientific’. But believing bad science will save the day isn’t the same thing as opposing scientific progress…

  29. #29 Barefoot
    Wooville, California
    June 17, 2015

    Not sure if banning advertisments for life saving drugs would pass co nstitutional muster and the smell test especially while the anti-pharma propaganda and advertisement for “immune boosting” supplements would continue unabated. Maybe we should *incentivize* drug companies to market more effectively.

  30. #30 Mrs Woo
    June 17, 2015

    Why not get rid of them both? Drug companies argue direct to consumer advertising raises patient awareness, but so many people have, well, a bit more anxiety about their health. Between ads and the internet, some more vulnerable people seem to be stricken with an alphabet soup of conditions. Worse, if it is real, they sometimes have a drug recommendation for their doctor (the goal of those ads to begin with), rather than the doctor suggesting medication to the patient.

    If I had my way, alternative medicine would be illegal, period. They sell false hope and do more harm than good. 🙁

  31. #31 Mrs Woo
    June 17, 2015

    It used to be drug companies didn’t advertise prescription drugs, I believe. We could at least get them off of television. We don’t allow tobacco advertising on television. Obviously there is legal precedent for limiting advertising some ways

  32. #32 JP
    June 17, 2015

    It used to be drug companies didn’t advertise prescription drugs, I believe.

    Yah, direct-to-consumer advertising didn’t start in the US until 1997. I recall the televized listing of side-effects becoming a big source of amusement around that time, drug ad parodies on SNL, etc.

    I don’t know how realistic it is to imagine the good ol’ US of A going back on corporation-friendly policies, though, what with, y’know, lobbying and all.

  33. #33 TBruce
    June 17, 2015

    That was what I initially thought, but would that explain the lack of proper plurals?

    In French, the plurals ending in “s” are written but the “s” is not pronounced in speech. The plural is indicated by the article: le or la – singular, les – plural. Francophones have a tendency to not pronounce the “s” in English plurals, so I guess that this would carry over into writing.
    This is based on a lot of speculation, since I am basing this on my high school French (which was so long ago it may be Old French), a few Francophone acquaintances (not many, I live in Western Canada) and some commenters on RI and elsewhere. If anyone more knowledgeable wants to take me to task, feel free.

  34. #34 Narad
    June 17, 2015

    Not sure if banning advertisments for life saving drugs would pass co nstitutional muster

    An outright ban on DTC pharmaceutical advertising would probably have a rough go with the Central Hudson test, but the FDA already has some regulatory power, which is why the “brief summary” in small print or barely intelligible speech exists for a subset of advertisements. This could probably be tightened, including a requirement for advertisement preapproval (logistical issues aside), for example.

    In short, by making DTC more expensive.

  35. #35 Woo Fighter
    June 17, 2015

    On a not-unrelated note, AofA has one of their typical, odious “defending baby killers-shaken baby syndrome is really vaccine damage” stories today. I won’t link; those of you so inclined know where to find it.

    I still don’t understand how they can claim vaccines break bones, however.

    As for the equally-odious Herbert, not to claim I’m a genius but I recognized his writing pattern as a francophone “speaking” English immediately. Every single francophone I work with speaks English the exact same way: no “s” on plurals and all kinds of unusual verb usage, for example. As TBruce points out, it’s a by-product of thinking in French and then mentally translating.

  36. #36 Barefoot
    Woo Tsunami Survivalist Cube
    June 17, 2015

    Recent US Supreme Court decisions, except for an occasional exception, have pushed free speech beyond what it ever used to be. It is annoying to me that the “Information Press” in SLO publishes claimed cancer treatments in articles written by the very people who advertise therein. Herbal tea and the like. Yet if Merck or GSK publish people think it is Big Pharma Propaganda Enslaving Us…

  37. #37 doug
    June 17, 2015

    I now feel pretty convinced that herbert is francophone. Everyone I’ve ever known whose first language was Quebecois French spoke English very well, so I’ve never noticed the dropping of s from English plurals.
    Actually, one of my first thoughts about herbert, given that I thought he was probably French Canadian, was that he might be related to the Deloziers.

  38. #38 doug
    June 17, 2015

    Alties/ woo-meisters/ prevaricators/ liars.

    Certain things warrant a good slashing.

  39. #39 Narad
    June 17, 2015

    Yah, direct-to-consumer advertising didn’t start in the US until 1997

    No, Virginia Pharmacy Board was decided in 1976. I can’t dig into the whole timeline at the moment, but see generally here (PDF) and, probably, here.

  40. #40 JP
    June 17, 2015


    Thanks for the correction, and the links; I’ll read through them in a little bit here.

    Memory is notoriously unreliable, and I was pretty darn young in the ’90s, but I seem to remember DTC starting fairly abruptly sometime around 1997. I would’ve been about 9 years old at the time, so who knows how accurate my memories are. Did something happen WRT drug ads on television at that time? Did DTC advertising just become more common?

  41. #41 Denice Walter
    June 17, 2015

    @ doug:

    My point exactly!

  42. #42 herr doktor bimler
    June 17, 2015

    ‘ Is throll an enthralled troll.. a troll thrall?’

    Glámr in Grettis Saga is the opposite, an entrolled thrall.

  43. #43 Panacea
    June 17, 2015


    Nursing instructor here. Your friend would have to finish a program in registered nursing first, and pass the NCLEX-RN before she could become a nurse practitioner.

    While there are some ADN to FNP programs out there, generally the path is BSN to MSN to NP program. NP programs are moving to the DNP level (we’re supposed to be there now nationally but the faculty shortage is pushing the deadline back). There are some direct BSN to NP programs, and many MSN to NP programs, but she’ll need to do her research in her area. YMMV.

    ADNs once could practice in practically any specialty in nursing for their entire careers but generally can’t get into management, and now it’s pretty much a given you have to get your BSN within 5 years to keep your job.

    NPs can practice solo in many states, but not all states. In other states, they have to have a practice agreement with a physician. A PA can never practice solo, they are always attached to a physician. So NPs have some different options than PAs, but PAs often have access to specialty training (often highly technical and surgical oriented) that NPs don’t.

    NPs can and do see their own patients in the hospital, whether they are solo practitioners or not. In my state NPs and PAs have very similar roles, except some NPs can set up independent businesses such as home health agencies and PAs can’t.

    Competition to get into both ADN and BSN programs (the first step) is also stiff in many parts of the country. A national shortage of nursing faculty means that many programs can’t take in as many applicants as they would like. My program has three applications for every seat, and we start two cohorts every year (Fall and Spring).

    My recommendation is she start community college (cheaper) and take her pre-reqs including 2 semesters of A&P, Microbiology, and Chemistry if she can fit it in, along with Intro to Psych and Developmental Psych. Then she’ll have the background to successfully get into to either an ADN or a BSN program, and she can focus on the nursing courses. We find that students, even top students, who take the general science courses WITH the nursing courses struggle more. Those who take them before hand have a better foundation and to better.

    Hope this helps.

  44. #44 JP
    June 17, 2015

    Ah. Re: DTC: I have arrived at the part on “major” vs. “minor” risks.

  45. #45 Narad
    June 18, 2015

    Did something happen WRT drug ads on television at that time? Did DTC advertising just become more common?

    I’m not sure. If you see footnote 38 in the PDF above, it has this to say (boldface added):

    “From 1997 to 2001, the percentage of DTC advertising for print ads declined from 74% to 35%, while the percentage of spending on television ads increased from 25% to 64%. See General Accounting Office, Prescription Drugs: FDA Oversight of Direct-to-Consumer Advertising Has Limitations 10 (GAO-03-177) (Oct. 2002) . . . . For a history of the FDA’s regulation of DTC ads, see[*] Timothy S. Hall, The Promise and Peril of Direct-to-Consumer Prescription Drug Promotion on the Internet, 7 DePaul J. Health Care L. 1 (2003).”

    * Bluebook FAIL, BTW.

  46. #46 JP
    June 18, 2015

    The Great Gazoogle tells me this:

    In 1995, the FDA held a hearing to discuss easing broadcast DTCPA regulations in recognition of the prohibitive time and expense that the rules then required.2 In 1997, the FDA issued draft guidance on this topic (and final regulations in 1999) that allowed broadcast DTC product claim ads to include a “major statement” and “adequate provision” to satisfy the “fair balance” requirement, rather than the lengthier “brief summary,” which listed all product risks.2,4 Now, advertisers had to include only “major risks” and provide an “adequate provision” that would direct viewers elsewhere to access complete “brief summary” information (from a toll-free number, a health care provider, a Web site, or a print ad).4

  47. #47 Narad
    June 18, 2015

    I now feel pretty convinced that herbert is francophone.

    I’m with the former MSII on the that-seemed-obvious front (the rest I’m not going to delve into).

    Everyone I’ve ever known whose first language was Quebecois French spoke English very well, so I’ve never noticed the dropping of s from English plurals.

    Have you ever imagined what C.W. McCall’s Convoy would be like in Français québécois, given the documented divergences in C.B. lingo?

  48. #48 JP
    June 18, 2015

    Have you ever imagined what C.W. McCall’s Convoy would be like in Français québécois, given the documented divergences in C.B. lingo?

    My dad and I used to play that record* more-or-less specifically to annoy the bejeesus out of my mom; it was sort of an in-joke.

    *It was a “greatest hits” compilation on vinyl, if memory serves. This one, I’m pretty sure.

  49. #49 JP
    June 18, 2015

    ^ My dad’s side of the family is “mostly” French Canadian, incidentally.

  50. #50 ChrisP
    June 18, 2015

    Actually, one of my first thoughts about herbert, given that I thought he was probably French Canadian, was that he might be related to the Deloziers.

    Probably not. Ebed Delozier’s parents seem to be part of the Twelve Tribes sect and while the cult does have links into Canada, they are rather more firmly ensconced in Vermont. They also have rules about limiting contact for non cult members. Ebed seems to have broken from the cult, but the cult’s child rearing activities have come under much scrutiny in the past.

    This means that I am going to have to take back many of my speculations from comment 18.

    Christine’s family seems to be from Pennsylvania, but they also have some odd ideas. Christine’s mother has written a series of not so best selling novels about Godly courtship.

    No herbert seems to be just some random with a bee in their bonnet about big medicine.

  51. #51 Narad
    June 18, 2015

    The Great Gazoogle tells me this

    It sounds about right. I ran across that earlier, but I only glanced at it, because I was looking for legal opinion.

  52. #52 Narad
    June 18, 2015

    My dad and I used to play that record* more-or-less specifically to annoy the bejeesus out of my mom; it was sort of an in-joke.

    Ah, but that invocation was for a specific reason. I have a history on this subject.

  53. #53 JP
    June 18, 2015

    I have a history on this subject.

    Do tell.

  54. #54 Narad
    June 18, 2015

    Do tell.

    I think the first mention is here.

    If Alain were here, this would be simpler. I damn well better still have the proof-of-concept audio track,* but I could swear there was a short video, too.

    * Which itself has a back story involving, yes, the vicinity of saffron robes for the vocal credit, and on and on.

  55. #55 Johnny
    June 18, 2015

    Every time someone dies in the ‘care’ of a doctor, maybe we should sue them. currently being killed by a doctor on the wrong medicine is only slightly less dangerous than being on the right medicine.

  56. #56 LouV
    June 18, 2015

    As a francophone, I feel frankly embarrassed by Herbert, especially when he tells us he read Frachon’s book and only got out of it something akin to “Wake up sheeple !!”
    Herbert, as a francophone and if you really followed the Mediator affair, you don’t have any excuse not to know about the journal Prescrire, who does their hardest to make sure the real schemes of pharma labs are known by doctors, in order to fight against them more efficiently.

  57. #57 JP
    June 18, 2015

    If Alain were here, this would be simpler. I [d*mn] well better still have the proof-of-concept audio track,* but I could swear there was a short video, too.

    Goodness, I’d like to see (or hear) that.

  58. #58 LouV
    June 18, 2015

    I also echo AdamG at 194, on combined antidepressants + cognitive therapy.
    And in France I know quite a few people who don’t have, for one reason or another, access to a therapist ; so they are stuck with the antidepressants alone. It is not a matter of not knowing about the benefits of therapy and blindly believing in the drug, but of psychiatric / psychologic support still severely lacking in some areas.

  59. #59 doug
    June 18, 2015


    The possibility of herbert being related to the Deloziers was just a fleeting thought.
    Vermont does share a border with Quebec, Canada’s predominantly francophone province. Canada was also on the pathway between France and the US for many US citizens of French ancestry. I wouldn’t rule out the possibility of blood ties between herbert and the Deloziers, but it really is of no importance one way or the other.

  60. #60 ann
    June 18, 2015

    Has there been any discussion here about the Hep-B vaccine’s apparent protective effects against childhood leukemia?


    Maybe it’s not news. But it was to me.

    (Off-topic, but I came across it while looking for something else; the Hib was mentioned upthread; and it’s where’s-the-harm-ish.)

  61. #61 Rational Bee
    June 18, 2015

    Orac, here is a homeopath’s analysis of this article > http://tun.in/tgUiFe (Should be Tuesday 16th June Hour 1)

    Antibiotics are worse than homeopathy, apparently.

  62. #62 Narad
    June 18, 2015

    <ciaparker>That means the real thing must be even better!!1!</ciaparker>

  63. #63 Alain
    June 18, 2015

    I’m here and yes, I can confirm that Herbert sound like a French canuck but I’m not what Narad refer to. Give me a few hours of sleep and a few coffee later on and I can give better answer.


  64. #64 Alain
    June 18, 2015

    *not sure…

  65. #65 Johnny
    June 18, 2015

    NHS doctors are prematurely ending the lives of thousands of elderly hospital patients because they are difficult to manage or to free up beds, a senior consultant claimed yesterday.

    Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2161869/Top-doctors-chilling-claim-The-NHS-kills-130-000-elderly-patients-year.html#ixzz3dQ1j2vcY
    Follow us: @MailOnline on Twitter | DailyMail on Facebook

    So is this any different to an uneducated family allowing their child to die?

  66. #66 Helianthus
    June 18, 2015

    @ TBruce

    OT, English spelling by French people

    Francophones have a tendency to not pronounce the “s” in English plurals, so I guess that this would carry over into writing.

    I’m not sure it’s part of my own random placement of “s”, but I could be unaware of this factor. I do have a very strong accent, so that may effectively “hide” proper spelling.

    (conversely, I did find out that if I can spell an English word, then I can pronounce it much more effectively)

    Speaking for myself, my own take on my floating “s” comes from a major difference between verb declination between French and English:
    In French, we put “s” at the end of many verbs when using the second-person singular form (singular “you”)
    In English, you put the “s” when using third-person singular (he/she/it).

    I know that, in the course of writing, I could be confused as to which is which. Is it singular but there is need for a “s”, or is it plural bu there is no need for one?

    Anyway, as you said, our floating “s” are certainly linked to thinking in French before translating in English.

  67. #67 Delphine
    our house in the middle of our street
    June 18, 2015

    Was there an over/under on when Johnny would link to the Daily Fail?

  68. #68 Delphine
    June 18, 2015

    Anyone here ever had AOM as an adult? I did, and it struck in the first hour of a 12 hour flight. Excruciating, unremitting pain.

    Delphinette suffered from bouts of AOM from the age of 16 months to just over two. I would know when it was coming on when she would grab the affected ear as she was nursing. She started to do that on day 2 of a trip to NYC at the age of 2 and it went downhill from there. My wallet had been stolen earlier in the day, which meant that I didn’t have our private health insurance card. Nor did we have a working credit card since Mr. Delphine’s cards had to be canceled as well.

    We showed up at NY Presbyterian’s ER with a febrile, screaming toddler, and told them we a. had no money and b. no insurance card, to which they said, that’s fine. Delphinette was examined and admitted. Within a few hours of her first dose of Augmentin she was feeling much better.

    The bill was later paid for via our insurance.

    The Deloziers are poor but that is not relevant here. They are ignorant narcissists who elevated their beliefs to stand above their own little girl. Hope was a living, breathing child, and she died a terrible death because her parents are stupid selfish a$$oles. No more, no less.

  69. #69 ann
    June 18, 2015

    So is this any different to an uneducated family allowing their child to die?

    There’s no reason to think it’s happening apart from it being the opinion of the guy who wrote something saying so for the Catholic Medical Quarterly, who appears to have been motivated by a religious objection to palliative end-of-life care, which he’s calling euthanasia because he would prefer to see the divine spark of life kept lit, like G-d wants it to be.

    Which is certainly his prerogative. As is voicing his opinion. However, there is zero evidence that any excess unnecessary deaths are occurring, let alone hundreds of thousands of them.

    So in the sense that it’s purely notional, whereas the Delozier’s little girl is both real and really dead, yes, it’s any different.

  70. #70 TBruce
    June 18, 2015

    So is this any different to an uneducated family allowing their child to die?

    Only the difference between about 80 years life expectancy versus a few days or weeks.

  71. #71 Johnny
    June 18, 2015

    yes I suppose so indeed. But clearing doctors clearing hospital beds by withdrawing care is very similar. I suppose the doctors are trained and therefore know what they are doing.

  72. #72 MI Dawn
    June 18, 2015

    And J/johnny…if you can bring us ANY PROOF that this is being done WITHOUT the patient and/or family’s consent, then we’ll believe you. However, no matter what you may or may not believe or like, a patient (or identified famiily member) may choose to have all lifesaving measures withheld so someone dies.

    So, proof – and not the Daily Fail – is required.

  73. #73 Murmur
    June 18, 2015

    Of course there isn’t any proof of anything to do with that Daily Heil article “Johnny” cites: it’s the Heil, probably the worst of the mainstream British press for its lackadaisical attitude to accuracy (although the Independent has run it close lately with its HPV vaccination scare stories); the Heil, being a huge proponent of “free market” dogma, has for years taken every opportunity to slagg off the NHS.

    Disclaimer: my sister is a senior nurse in palliative care and may know a thing or 2 about this end of life stuff…So that probably makes me a proxy Shill for Big Death or something…

  74. #74 Murmur
    June 18, 2015

    Further disclaimer: a few years back I made a complaint about the Heil to our Press Complaints Commission (as it was then) about mega-inaccuracies in a piece about my area (CAMHS).
    And another friend made a complaint about other health-related lies.

    So, I’m a Shill for Big Complaint About The Heil too

  75. #75 Helianthus
    June 18, 2015

    @ TBruce

    Only the difference between about 80 years life expectancy versus a few days or weeks.

    That’s a bit rash.
    I will say it’s the difference between something witch could be easily cured (ear infection) and something for which there is no certain cure (old age’s infirmities).

  76. #76 Panacea
    June 18, 2015

    @Murmur #273, as a former hospice nurse myself I guess it makes me one, too.

    Appeal to authority is not the best way to get your point across. Then again, when someone IS an expert at something, their opinion ought to count for something.

  77. #77 Roger Kulp
    June 18, 2015

    Back to homeopathy,there is this post over at Science Based Medicine.

  78. #78 Roger Kulp
    June 18, 2015

    Delphine @ 268
    Yes.See my comment upthread @ 41

  79. #79 Johnny
    June 18, 2015

    Sorry, Johnny. But could you chill a little? I appreciate that this thread has gotten heated, but that’s no excuse to be rude to those who don’t deserve it.

    PGP –
    I apologize that this is coming rather late (yesterday was very hectic) but if my post at #173 caused you any distress, it was not my intent. My comment about the contents of homeopathic nostrums was intended to reference the fact that homeopathy is full of nothing (I am assuming you were not offended by me pointing out that it was doug’s joke, and not me, asking about mullion). I did not intend to be rude towards you about your post that my #173 was in response to, as your related post did not offend me in any way.

    That my sloppy writing has offended you disturbs me, and I promise that, in the future, you will be sure if I take exception to anything you post. For example, I may post something like ‘PGP, you are an ignorant bigot’, or, in the words of friend shay, ‘You effing idiot…’. But I will not post anything relating to homeopathy in your general direction.

    I hope you find my apology satisfactory.

    Proper Johnny
    Accept no substitutes.

  80. […] What’s the harm? A child dies a preventable death from an ear infection – Respectful Insolence […]

  81. #81 Elliott
    June 19, 2015

    A bit late to the thread, but I found the use of The Godwin by Herbert to be a bit ironic. He is perhaps unaware that the Nazis were also unappreciative of antibiotics, in spite of the fact that the first successful antibiotic put on to the market came from Nazi Germany. I suspect that their reluctance was not due to any distaste toward corrupt big companies (they had no reservations about corruption) but had more to do with their idiotic notions of “purity”.

    The first good commercial antibiotics were the sulfa drugs, discovered by Bayer and marketed in the mid-1930s. The German scientist who discovered the drug and led the effort to develop it was arrested by the Gestapo, and tossed in jail for a while for the crime of getting a Nobel prize.

    Sulfa ended up saving far more Allied soldiers than Germans because the German military was reluctant to use it. It was mostly replaced by penicillin by the end of the war.

  82. #82 Sia
    June 19, 2015

    @Robert Bell: It’s been not a big deal since parents decided a corpse was preferable.

    I do not care how many co-morbids your child has (but they’re not Autism), they have a better chance of progressing than a dead child.

    “According to the DSM 5, autism (Autism Spectrum Disorder) is characterized by:

    “Persistent deficits in social communication and social interaction across multiple contexts…” and
    “Restricted, repetitive patterns of behavior, interests, or activities, currently or by history…”

    That is IT. Period.

    It’s not epilepsy. It’s not gastro-intestinal distress. It’s not allergies, or anything else. Though it can exist alongside those things.

    And it can (but does not necessarily have to) exist along with intellectual disability.

  83. #83 Barefoot
    June 19, 2015

    I was just reading a download on my hard drive of the front page of AoA and the articlke on the left side, from a day or two or a few ago, had a link to an article alleging that the medical establishment is the third most lethal whatever…apparently the perps imbibe of the woo…[!]

  84. #84 Barefoot
    Rooting around my notes
    June 19, 2015

    “I FOUND IT”
    (The link, not Jeeezuz)

    Drug Industry Operates Like Organised Crime – But Kills More

    People Than The Mob – Says Dr. Peter Gøtzsche of the Cochrane

    Center in Copenhagen:






    & https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dozpAshvtsA

  85. #85 Roger Kulp
    June 19, 2015

    I am sorry,but a very large percentage of autism researchers do not follow the purity of the DSM description of autism.You seem to believe in.You might be surprised how many mainstream psychiatrists and psychologists do not use the DSM when diagnosing autism.

    A sizable chunk of research articles are about (Fill in name of medical condition) “in children with autism spectrum disorder”.Often with detailed tables of all the medical conditions the children have.You should spend sometime reading this stuff.

    There is a big debate in the autism research and medical communities about “autism pure” VS “autism plus”.I might add that those in the neurodiversity movement,who are neither doctors,psychologists,or researchers,are some of the biggest advocates of the “autism pure” model of the condition.

  86. #86 Barefoot
    June 20, 2015

    DSM V completely revamped everything about it.

  87. #87 Narad
    June 20, 2015

    “I FOUND IT”

    CHS is John Stone’s BFF* Clifford “Graph Boy” Miller.

    * And, for a time, Wakefraud’s “foreign counsel” in the comedy that was the Texas libel suit. (Sadly for the popcorn crowd – as opposed to the defendants in this asshattery – the anti-SLAPP was never reached, so it didn’t make it to the Götterdämmerig level that it truly deserved.

  88. #88 Cate K
    June 20, 2015

    A very terrible and virtually incomprehensible story.

    It’s unclear to me just how prevalent this sort of mistrust of conventional medicine is although presumably there are some stats on refusal of vaccination that could be used to extrapolate. Certainly the internet seems full of it but that may be increased awareness on my part and increased desire on the part of alternative practitioners to promote their viewpoints and sell their books, remedies or whatever.

    What concerns me is how to counter it. There are of course some very real problems with the way drug development takes place, not least the lack of publishing inconclusive or negative data. There are also problems with the overprescription of antibiotics. I will even agree that there is the very occasional problem following vaccination. None of these things in any way negates the overall worth of conventional medicine or should overturn the system of clinical trials.

    Why have a number of people suddenly been persuaded that they know more than their medical doctor because they’ve done their own internet ‘research’ and what stops this infection spreading?

  89. #89 shay
    June 20, 2015

    What concerns me is how to counter it

    In a just world, we wouldn’t have to. Decent, rational people see these parents for what they are; it’s the cranks and the ghouls who don’t.

  90. #90 DLC
    A really angry place right now.
    June 22, 2015

    I know, it’s not politic to say it, and not really nice to think it, but stories like this leave me wanting to beat the living shit out of the so-called parents. How in the name of all that’s good in life can you sit blithely by and watch your child suffer through three goddamn weeks of pain and suffering, doing nothing but throwing vitamins and homeopathic water at it, when you know full well where the bloody doctors are ? Not even fucking Tylenol for her pain ? what goddamn inhuman vacuum-headed pus-bags. You should be made to suffer the exact same death. (okay, rant over.) By the time they “performed CPR” it would have already been way too late anyway. and WTF ? you can’t pick up a phone and call EMS ? flag down a passing motorist ? Scream for help ? Clearly they had some ability to communicate with the outside world, if they had internet to read antivax bullshit on.

  91. #91 Fro
    June 24, 2015

    Didn’t you all read the full article? They didn’t bring the child to the hospital 60% for financial reasons and 40% for their beliefs. In other words, the major reason was financial. A continueing problem with those not insured or poorly insured. Obviously, in retrospect, they made a bad judgement call in thinking they could have treated this on their own.

    People with misconceptions about vaccines will only start to change their minds if the rest of society stops hating them for their fears.

    How can you say that someone who tho.is vaccines/antibiotics are bad for their child and therefore refuses to use them hates their child? It can’t be so, but this would be a case of misguided good intentions.

  92. #92 herr doktor bimler
    June 24, 2015

    60% for financial reasons and 40% for their beliefs

    Oh yes? These percentages are stated In the full article, you say, and not something you pulled out the air just now?

  93. #93 ChrisP
    June 24, 2015

    60% for financial reasons and 40% for their beliefs

    Oh yes? These percentages are stated In the full article, you say, and not something you pulled out the air just now?

    I couldn’t even find the numbers 60 and 40 in the article, let alone as percentages.

    Given the family background of both parents and the attitude displayed by the mother, I suspect the real percentages would be closer to 200% and 20%.

  94. #94 Delphine
    frosted flakes
    June 24, 2015

    “Obviously, in retrospect, they made a bad judgement call in thinking they could have treated this on their own.”

    Letting your 4 year old eat Frosted Flakes right before bedtime was a bad judgment call. Giving her an Elsa doll without an off switch was a bad judgment call. Nuke shaking off Crash was a bad judgment call.

    The Deloziers were criminally neglectful. Watching your toddler die a wholly preventable death because you’re too bloody narcissistic and ignorant to do the right thing is not a bad judgment call.

  95. #95 shay
    June 24, 2015

    They waited until their daughter was almost dead before they took her to the hospital, or did you miss that part?

    Regardless of my financial status, I think that after the second week of her running a fever, screaming in pain and draining fluid out of her ear, I might have decided that getting help for that baby girl trumped any and every other consideration.

  96. #96 Delphine
    June 24, 2015


    This is the little girl who died. Her name was Hope. Her death was not not the result of a bad judgment call or misguided good intentions. Her death was the product of parental negligence. She deserves a whole lot more than to be minimized, by you, by anyone.


  97. #97 Mrs Woo
    June 25, 2015

    Just finished reading Dr. Off it’s book, “Bad Faith.” As far as stopping or greatly reducing this type of medical abuse, it appears that stricter laws do a lot to reduce these kinds of “choices,” even though they don’t end them completely.

    Lots of opinion articles recently about the rather proud anti-intellectualism rampant in American culture and the bad outcomes it produces. One suggested that Christianity and how it is practiced in this country, our history, etc., are a big reason these problems exist.

    The complexities of all of this are fascinating… and the carnage it creates breaks my heart.

  98. #98 Narad
    June 25, 2015

    Regardless of my financial status

    Perceived financial status, charitably; as I mentioned above, she was trivially covered by Pennsylvania’s Medicaid plan.

    I’m leaning toward this being Freakish, Scripted Apologetics on Fro’s part. Their public defender(s)* seem to have little option but to go with downright stupidity as a mitigating circumstance. The charge is involuntary manslaughter,** after all.

    * I presume; a really cold-hearted bastard might observe that the state can still try to flip one against the other with the sentencing carrot to secure a conviction.

    ** Going by the news reports; I’m not going to look up the penal code and so forth.

  99. #99 Helianthus
    June 25, 2015

    this would be a case of misguided good intentions

    There is this old fable about the village idiot who decided to chase the flies which are bothering his sleeping friend. He grabbed a hammer for this job, and proceeded to smash the flies with it. Including the one which landed on the head of his friend.
    Of course, the hammer blow killed the friend.
    (the story does’t tell if at least the fool hit the fly).

    The morale of the story: it’s better to have a smart foe than an idiotic friend.
    Or, in the case of Hope, than an idiotic mother.

    If someone doesn’t realize than certain actions have lethal consequence, it’s past time to sit this someone and have a long talk with him or her. In short, don’t put fools and hammers together.

  100. #100 Narad
    June 25, 2015

    Just finished reading Dr. Off it’s book, “Bad Faith.” As far as stopping or greatly reducing this type of medical abuse, it appears that stricter laws do a lot to reduce these kinds of “choices,” even though they don’t end them completely.

    This was actually one of the, ah, “themes” in the latest entry from AoA’s newest serialist, Martin J. Walker:

    Mark Oppenheimer wrote of Bad Faith: (6) ….

    Bad choice.

  101. […] In den USA ist ein 18 Monate altes Mädchen an einer Mittelohrentzündung gestorben. […]

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