Pharyngula

Kookfight!

Abby has a classic battle of the kooks. In one corner, Leonard Horowitz, a raving looney who begins the debate with an official denunciation of Duesberg, speaking as the mouthpiece of god, arguing that HIV/AIDS is the designed product of evil militarists. In the other corner, the calmer, but still goofy, Peter Duesberg, who claims that the HIV virus cannot possibly cause AIDS. They don’t like each other, and Horowitz is particularly shrill.

And just to make it even more hilarious, the venue: this is from a recording of some New Age health nut radio program, and the commercials that intrude are for weird things like Himalayan Salt Lamps (They’re ionic! They’re natural!) and Health Magnets (the North Pole has special healing powers) and hemp as a dietary supplement (I’m sure it’s high in fiber).

It’s funny until you realize that there are people who actually believe this crap, then it becomes scary.


You need to see Horowitz’s introductory rant, which mds transcribed.

I, Dr Leonard Horowitz, respecting and representing thousands of scientists and physicians worldwide whose voices have been neglected and silenced, as a diplomatic officer for the World Organization for Natural Medicine, as a representative of God, knighted in the Sovereign Orthodox Order of Knights Hospitaller of St John of Jerusalem, as a Levitical priest in the bloodlines of Moses and Yeshua the Messiah, I do hereby indict you, Dr Peter Deusberg, for the deaths of millions of people worldwide, for your role in the creation of AIDS, as well as in the disinformation that sustains this, and related medical genocides. This official indictment condemns you for the mass killing and pharmaceutical enslaving of millions of people to AIDS, infectious cancers, and myriad immune pathologies, resulting from your and your collaborators’ manipulations, creations and disseminations of viruses, using genetic modifications and vaccinations, you conducted or abetted. You, along with your colleagues, including Dr Robert Gallo, prostituting virologists and molecular biologists, working for the National Cancer Institute, and paid by Litton Bionetics, a biological weapons contractor for the United States military, having advanced the special virus cancer program during the late 1960s, through the 1970s, are hereby held accountable for the people, and to God, for these crimes against humanity, resulting in this global tragedy of the pandemic now called AIDS, for other cancers, and other autoimmune illnesses that are now devastating populations. This indictment is served publicly and officially, with accompanying evidence of the official contracts, actions taken and payments made to you, published in the Special Virus Cancer Program Reports, that have been now made public during several investigations by many independent investigators. This official indictment, served as a humanitarian action, prays to the courts of Heaven and Earth that you will be punished to the fullest extent of the law, both man’s and God’s, and condemns you, for eternity, for the mass slaughter and enslavement of humanity to HIV/AIDS, and these other illnesses.

Try measuring that on the Hovind Scale.

Comments

  1. #1 Architeuthis
    May 22, 2008

    I love a good “battle of the woo”

  2. #2 joewanderlust
    May 22, 2008

    Hemp seeds are mighty tasty, full of protein too. I put the unshelled ones in my granola, adds a certain fibrous crunch.

  3. #3 Etha Williams
    May 22, 2008

    Slate ran an 3-part article entitled Contrary Imaginations: The Paranoid Style in American Science, all about fringe “skeptics”/denialists’ conspiracy-theory driven variant of scientific inquiry. They focus on our dear friend Berlinski in the first part, global warming denialism in the second, and Expelled (*jazz hand*) in the third. It’s a fairly quick read, and an interesting analysis IMO

  4. #4 Tyler DiPietro
    May 22, 2008

    Horrowitz’s opening begs for a parody. Someone should transcribe it to text so that it can be used as a template for official denunciations.

  5. #5 Blake Stacey
    May 22, 2008

    I used hemp supplements in college, but I didn’t inhale.

    </obvious joke>

  6. #6 Iain George
    May 22, 2008

    It was a brilliant denunciation. Officially brilliant.

    Oh, and in case you missed it, or skipped the adverts – http://www.jwlabs.com for your Rife machine

  7. #7 raven
    May 22, 2008

    Hiv denialists are about the kookiest of the kooks. I stopped paying the slightest attention to them when it became obvious they were so attached to their delusions as to outright lie.

    1. One tactic is to reference some obscure paper as saying something anti-HIV. When you actually read it, it says no such thing.

    2. Another is to quote mine some paper and “fix it up”. So something like, “we find that the 2 year progression rate to AIDS is 40%” becomes “we find no progression to AIDS in 2 years”

    At that point, if they are just going to flat out lie, why waste the time paying attention to a few lunatic fringers? Besides which, the UFOers are much more entertaining.

  8. #8 Travis
    May 22, 2008

    You say that as if hemp doesn’t have nutritional value! http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hemp#Food

  9. #9 Dennis N
    May 22, 2008

    Oh hey, this was over at erv. Hilarious. They don’t even stop to consider that science has it right.

  10. #10 Jams
    May 22, 2008

    I interviewed these guys in the early nineties. They had me over for a multi-course diner comprised of dishes that each in some way incorporated hemp seed, hemp leaf, or hemp bud. Roots were mercifully excluded, though they mentioned it was in the works.

    I have to admit, it was pretty good. Still… in every dish?

  11. #11 karl
    May 22, 2008

    What I found most amazing is Lenny slanders Doo doo for like a solid ten minutes. You’d think Doo doo would come out swinging. But he sounded like he was trying to figure out if he was wearing pants and wasn’t fully sure he was even on a radio show and that he was the topic of debate.

  12. #12 Kseniya
    May 22, 2008

    Kenny, you gabbling limpet!

    (Err… am I too early?)

  13. #13 ERV
    May 22, 2008

    1. I almost threw up I was laughing so hard at Lennys opening. I havent laughed that hard in a long, long time. Ohmygod. In a million years, I couldnt have made that up… Unfortunately, I think Ive broken my laugh box.

    2. I did better against Lenny than THE Peter Duesberg. w00t!!!

  14. #14 Kyra
    May 22, 2008

    Well of course they’re selling something high in fiber—how else could they ensure a steady supply of subject matter?

  15. #15 Etha Williams
    May 22, 2008

    Wow, I know he’s a kook, but couldn’t Horowitz have tried to be just a bit more concise in his statement? You know it’s bad when your prepared statements come of as rambling and utterly off-the-wall…

  16. #16 Mikey M
    May 22, 2008

    This Peter Duesberg?http://mcb.berkeley.edu/faculty/BMB/duesbergp.html

    He’s a professor in Molecular and Cell Biology at Berkeley. He did some of the pioneering work on retroviruses.

    Okay, so that doesn’t prove he’s no kook, but I would imagine he knows a bit of science. When I heard him lecture he seemed completely reasonable.

  17. #17 Pwnagepanda
    May 22, 2008

    I call Poe’s Law on this one.

  18. #18 Optimus Primate
    May 22, 2008

    My favorite was the commercial from the dude who claims that the Bible is really about “America” (one assumes the United States thereof). He’s special.

  19. #19 Ichthyic
    May 22, 2008

    Hiv denialists are about the kookiest of the kooks.

    He’s a professor in Molecular and Cell Biology at Berkeley. He did some of the pioneering work on retroviruses.

    add Lynn Margulis to that list.

    It just goes to show that nobody, no matter how intelligent, is insusceptible to any form of woo that reinforces some preconceived notion that resides in some compartmentalized part of the brain.

    BTW, anybody know if Deusenberg was the prof. that accepted Jonathan Wells as a graduate student?

    If not, I’ll bet he was on his committee, at the very least.

  20. #20 Ichthyic
    May 22, 2008

    for those thinking “Poe”…

    http://www.duesberg.com/

  21. #21 tim Rowledge
    May 22, 2008

    #20 – interesting that he claims the support of Cary Mullis; happens to be someone I’ve met a couple of times. Seemed to me to be proof that a Nobel doesn’t make you *any* sort of deity.

  22. #22 Etha Williams
    May 22, 2008

    He actually solicits donations for his “research” on his web page…wow. He pleads:

    Your help is needed! Prof. Duesberg’s findings have been a thorn in the side of the medical establishment and drug companies since 1987. Instead of engaging in scientific debate, however, the only response has been to cutoff funding to further test Professor Duesberg’s hypothesis. You can show your support by contributing a tax deductible donation to help support Prof. Duesberg’s lab at the University of California Berkeley. Over 95% of your donation goes directly to Professor Duesberg’s research.

    Do paypal donations from kooks count as a “conflict of interest”?

  23. #23 tim Rowledge
    May 22, 2008

    Duh. I could at least spell the guy’s name correctly; Kary Mullis.

  24. #24 Ichthyic
    May 22, 2008

    Do paypal donations from kooks count as a “conflict of interest”?

    you know, that’s actually a damn good question.

    I could be wrong (rules change over time, after all), but IIRC, he would have to conduct his “research” outside of the auspices of the University, under the umbrella of his nonprofit (this is how ours was set up to do shark research when I was working nonprofit up in Santa Cruz). Otherwise, all donations contributing to his research would have to go through the university (donate to UCB, tag the donation to support his research through the MCB dept.).

    That said, if he is receiving money directly through his site, how he would be doing the kind of “research” implied on his .com site without access to university equipment is beyond me. If he IS using uni equipment, funded by that nonprofit, that would be pretty sticky.

    For the new regulars here, I was a grad student in the Zoology dept. at Berkeley while Wells was a grad student in MCB. There was a LOT of animosity over that whole debacle between the two depts.

    …and before anyone asks:

    Yes, I knew Wells personally; I even had lunch with him on occasion.

    Yes, he appeared manipulative even back then, though quite pleasant (he never came across as a tub-thumper).

    I saw him give a lecture on “resolving faith and science”, and instantly became aware of the dangers of creobotism.

    In fact, you might say I could thank Wells for opening my eyes, and I likely wouldn’t ever have bothered to visit Panda’s Thumb, and then Pharyngula, if I had never met the man.

  25. #25 Etha Williams
    May 22, 2008

    @#24 Ichthyic –

    Do paypal donations from kooks count as a “conflict of interest”?

    you know, that’s actually a damn good question.

    As it turns out, it’s a moot point, though…in my haste and general bafflement, I missed the part of the page where he makes sure to cover his ass by asking people to mail him checks:

    Please make checks payable to: UC Regents. Please note on your check that the donation is for Peter Duesberg’s Lab.

    I’ve still never heard of someone personally soliciting donations for their lab on the web, though…is this standard practice? It seems rather…bizarre. Kind of reminiscent of Robert Mark’s bizarre claim in Expelled that you need to set up online “labs” to “promote yourself” in order to get grants.

  26. #26 Milo Johnson
    May 22, 2008

    I’m very green-oriented and I’ve been hemp-powered for decades now…

  27. #27 mds
    May 22, 2008

    Here’s my attempt at a transcription of Horowitz’s indictment. Until I heard him say it, I had no idea that HIV was an ‘infectious cancer’.

    I, Dr Leonard Horowitz, respecting and representing thousands of scientists and physicians worldwide whose voices have been neglected and silenced, as a diplomatic officer for the World Organization for Natural Medicine, as a representative of God, knighted in the Sovereign Orthodox Order of Knights Hospitaller of St John of Jerusalem, as a Levitical priest in the bloodlines of Moses and Yeshua the Messiah, I do hereby indict you, Dr Peter Deusberg, for the deaths of millions of people worldwide, for your role in the creation of AIDS, as well as in the disinformation that sustains this, and related medical genocides. This official indictment condemns you for the mass killing and pharmaceutical enslaving of millions of people to AIDS, infectious cancers, and myriad immune pathologies, resulting from your and your collaborators’ manipulations, creations and disseminations of viruses, using genetic modifications and vaccinations, you conducted or abetted. You, along with your colleagues, including Dr Robert Gallo, prostituting virologists and molecular biologists, working for the National Cancer Institute, and paid by Litton Bionetics, a biological weapons contractor for the United States military, having advanced the special virus cancer program during the late 1960s, through the 1970s, are hereby held accountable for the people, and to God, for these crimes against humanity, resulting in this global tragedy of the pandemic now called AIDS, for other cancers, and other autoimmune illnesses that are now devastating populations. This indictment is served publicly and officially, with accompanying evidence of the official contracts, actions taken and payments made to you, published in the Special Virus Cancer Program Reports, that have been now made public during several investigations by many independent investigators. This official indictment, served as a humanitarian action, prays to the courts of Heaven and Earth that you will be punished to the fullest extent of the law, both man’s and God’s, and condemns you, for eternity, for the mass slaughter and enslavement of humanity to HIV/AIDS, and these other illnesses.

  28. #28 Ichthyic
    May 22, 2008

    Please make checks payable to: UC Regents. Please note on your check that the donation is for Peter Duesberg’s Lab

    heh, there ya go.

    There is no way I could figure he could do work out of a lab at Berkeley, funded by an independent nonprof with none of the money being funneled through the UC.

    I’ve still never heard of someone personally soliciting donations for their lab on the web, though…is this standard practice?

    not hardly.

    again, typically websites like that are for funding research through independent nonprofits.

    example:

    http://www.pelagic.org/

    this is the foundation I got to non-profit (501c3) status specifically to raise funding OUTSIDE of the university in order to fund shark research we were doing at the time.

    We still worked with the universities, but the research we did that was funded by that non-profit was published under the auspices of the nonprofit, or else given entirely as a contribution (donation) of knowledge to the University of CA and Cal State University. For university employed researchers, research they collaborated with us on (using university funding and resources) was always published under the auspices of the University of CA (or Cal State) itself.

    there was ONE exception, and as expected, that became a complete nightmare for all involved!

  29. #29 DLC
    May 22, 2008

    wow. nuts. Nuts have come out of the woodwork again.
    What next ? Will these two kooks claim the Crystal Skull can cure AIDS ?

  30. #30 Ichthyic
    May 22, 2008

    Will these two kooks claim the Crystal Skull can cure AIDS ?

    It wouldn’t surprise me, actually. There was another one of those psuedo-science ‘specials’ on the Sci-Fi channel today essentially suggesting that the Crystal Skulls can cure cancer, since one of the owner’s daughters was supposedly “cured” after the skull was obtained.

    no kidding.

  31. #31 Lee Harrison
    May 22, 2008

    Hi PZ

    Off Topic: have you heard Randy Olson on the latest Skepticality podcast? You, Expelled, Expelled from Expelled and Dodo’s all come up – wondering about your take on it.

  32. #32 Flamethorn
    May 23, 2008

    Himalayan Salt Lamps (They’re ionic! They’re natural!)

    They’re pretty. And chiropractors can be decent mechanics if you ignore their non-mechanical claims. Not everything with woo stuck to it is completely worthless.

  33. #33 gordon
    May 23, 2008

    I have a Himalayan Salt Lamp!! I got the whole spiel about how they produce soothing, healing ions, etc etc. I told the vendor that was a load of crap, but bought one anyway, because they look cool. It’s a standing joke now with my wife, that when she sits near the lamp, I will turn it on and waft the air around it toward her, sending the ‘healing ions’ her way.

  34. #34 spencer
    May 23, 2008

    That dude’s name sounds way too much like Doucheberg

  35. #35 Feynmaniac
    May 23, 2008

    OMFG!!!! I expected this to be full of crap, but damn! It reeks of parody. I almost can’t believe this is real. I have seen videos on The Onion website more believable than this.

    It’s almost as if the inmates at a psychiatric ward took control of the place, refused to continue taking their medication and then decided a week later to start a radio show.

  36. #36 Leigh
    May 23, 2008

    PZ, the Slate author calls you “blogger-ringleader P.Z. Myers.” Someone should email him; your correct title is
    “Tentacled Overlord”.

  37. #37 Susan Silberstein
    May 23, 2008

    Are Ionic salt lamps modeled on classic Greek architecture? I would have preferred Corinthian; Ionic just doesn’t go with the rest of my furniture.

  38. #38 melior
    May 23, 2008

    prostituting virologists and molecular biologists, working for the National Cancer Institute

    Well, duh! Why else would it be called the National Cancer Institute if it didn’t spread cancer?

  39. #39 Escuerd
    May 23, 2008

    The content was just…wow. No comment on the content.

    It sounded like Horowitz was about to break into rap for a moment:
    Manipulation of the population
    Through propaganda dissemination…

    Even the commercials were surreal:

    -You should hoard gold because China is threatening us with the “nucular option” of spending all the U.S. dollars they’ve hoarded.

    -Diuhd yeou know that Amuhrica is one of the two most talked about nations in the Bahble? Yeou oughrtta surbscrahb ta Newswatch Maaegazine.

    -Heart and Body Extract will give you not only the health, but the courage of the warriors whose hearts and bodies we extracted it from. Also helps with diabetis.

    -Learn about survival…on DVD. Be sure to memorize it, because there’ll be no way to review things in this format in the post-apocalyptic wasteland of the near future.

    -The Himalayan Crystal Salt Lamps come from a company called “Ionic Salts”. I suppose that helps prevent confusion with companies that sell non-ionic salts. Did we mention the salt has been in solid form for two hundred and fifty million years? For non-connoisseurs out there, that’s a very good year.

    -Lyin’ Legacy has managed to coin the phrase “properly designed therapeutic magnets”. The term “therapeutic magnets” was already taken by Alex Chiu. What makes our magnets different? The poles are separated. That’s right, we’ve created magnetic monopoles. This lets us deliver the healing energy of the north poles. And they’re large enough to deliver an effective force field to keep out those pesky Jedi.

    -Use our Rife machines that sweep through the entire range of frequencies known to be effective for viruses, bacteria and more. It’s an especially narrow range. It’s a very narrow range.

    -Most people are overly acidic. You should use our product to raise the pH of your water or you’ll get cancer and put on excess fat.

  40. #40 Michelle
    May 23, 2008

    Was that the woowoo equivalent of two dumb (most likely blonde to fit the cliché) babes having a nails and teeth mud fight?

  41. #41 Duncan
    May 23, 2008

    Dr Leonard Horowitz is a few dozen ‘ALL-ONE’s away from being an angry Dr. Bronner.

    As transcribed, that whole mess is composed using only five sentences. I think if Horowitz worked on it a little more, he could have gotten it down to two.

  42. #42 Duncan
    May 23, 2008

    Oh, and Leonard, next time try using ALL CAPS and LOTS OF EXCLAMATION POINTS!!!!!

    Lowercase makes you look like an amateur.

  43. #43 Deepsix
    May 23, 2008

    Someone contact “The Onion” and tell them to shut it down. There is no longer a line between parody and reality.

  44. #44 Sili
    May 23, 2008

    I had to stop listening about halfway through – just too painful.

    On the off-subject of crystal skulls: Science once again does a good job of pissing all over the New-age woosters’ parade.

  45. #45 David Marjanovi?, OM
    May 23, 2008

    Just ponder this snippet from comment 15:

    Wow, I know he’s a kook, but

  46. #46 Torbjörn Larsson, OM
    May 23, 2008

    Beknighted kook and loon Horowitz
    Delighted took to put on the ritz
    Spelled his spiel: “HIV”
    Shrilled the speak: “made to be”
    Relighted our verdict: “What a ditz!”

    Will these two kooks claim the Crystal Skull can cure AIDS ?

    Ironically crystals skulls could very well be modern fakes as the two best known are. Seems there is no provenance for any of them.

  47. #47 Torbjörn Larsson, OM
    May 23, 2008

    Ooops. Sili linked to the same article before me.

    Guess it was great minds et cetera. :-P

  48. #48 Dr. Duke
    May 23, 2008

    ============

    http://groups.msn.com/AIDSMythExposed/general.msnw?action=get_message&mview=0&ID_Message=34400&LastModified=4675673845950270528

    From: starvision Sent: 5/22/2008 9:38 PM
    Even though this “debate” was unfair to Dr. Peter Duesberg, it did
    accomplish what was intended. Horowitz took the bait, and now has himself
    in serious situation defending the outlandish lunatic claims he made.
    Horowitz fell right into the trap. Remember the old proverb, “give a fool
    enough rope”?

    Check this out!

    Tomorrow FRI, (5/23) Dr. Andrew Maniotis will begin the process of
    dissecting Horowitz and Graves in a follow up show. It is “rumored” that
    Peter Duesberg may be back on too, to use his “equal time” and
    unencumbered by the likes of these two knotheads (Horowitz and Graves) to
    nail the coffin shut on this nonsense. You will be able to listen to the
    program on line all weekend on internet rebroadcast at:
    http://www.hearitonline.com (click on the Pink box and pick an audio player)

    Peter did handle himself as a gentleman and answered the questions at
    hand, but this is only the beginning.

    It’s time to expose Horowitz as the shill and deceiver that he is. What do
    you think? Is he for real?
    Or— is Horowitz really an AID$ Inc. plant designed to reignite fear and
    terror of HIV among the 911 Truth / Alex Jones crowd.
    One thing is for sure, he has been at this for at least 11 years now, and
    has been a disinformation source all that time. This is why people like
    Alex Jones still are confused about the HIV=AIDS fraud.
    Tune it in—all weekend long as we now dissect Horowitz alive!

    ===========

  49. #49 John
    May 23, 2008

    Well hemp makes really nice soft t-shirts, but I wouldn’t wanna eat em.

  50. #50 ndt
    May 23, 2008

    Hemp as food isn’t really woo at all. Hemp seed oil is high in essential fatty acids.

  51. #51 Basement Cat
    May 23, 2008

    I had hemp buns for breakfast at the Hemp Hotel in Amsterdam. They’re very tasty, really filling, and apparently quite good for the plumbing.

    And no, I’m not a pot-smoking hippie.

  52. #52 Ktesibios
    May 23, 2008

    Hemp seeds (sterilized lest people use ‘em to grow weed) have been used in commercial bird seed mixes for many years.

    I can also say, on the basis of personal observation, that mice absolutely love those seeds.

  53. #53 Hippy #28771
    May 23, 2008

    ” and hemp as a dietary supplement (I’m sure it’s high in fiber).”

    Hemp seeds are high in omega-3 fatty acids, even more so than flax seeds. Also, they’re pretty yummy in granola…

  54. #54 Moses
    May 23, 2008

    Arsenic is natural.

  55. #55 mr_p
    May 23, 2008

    I stopped reading at the part he said he was a representitive for god. What kind of egomaniacs is this person? If there really was a god – any god, pick one – whoudl he (or she) really need a human to represent them? why doesnt the all mighty come and represent himself? Did god call up this person and say ‘I wont be in today, cover for me’?

  56. #56 MReap
    May 23, 2008

    What is it about guys named Horowitz?

  57. #57 ThirdMonkey
    May 23, 2008

    “knighted in the Sovereign Orthodox Order of Knights Hospitaller of St John of Jerusalem”

    That sounds cool. How does one manage that? What are the perks? Does it mean we have to call him ‘sir’?

    Can I use it to cut in line at movies or the grocery store?
    “Move aside peasant! I’m a Knight of the Sovereign Orthodox Order of Knights Hospitaller of St John of Jerusalem!”
    …Bit of a mouthfull…

  58. #58 khan
    May 23, 2008

    Crank Cage Match!

  59. #59 mds
    May 23, 2008

    ThirdMonkey @ #57:
    This seems to be the website of the order that he joined: although the name doesn’t quite match. (It’s closer than any of the others I could see at a glance.) On his own site, he has a press release that I think has a slightly different wording again, dropping the ‘order of’

    Amusingly, in my search I found a number of people quite unhappy with him joining the order (which at least claims to be an offshoot of the Knights of Malta). Some of the detractors were fellow conspiracy theorists, appalled that he would throw his hat in with The Man and the papists (even though the order he joined appears to be Eastern Orthodox in origins).

    This is from the first google hit for “horowitz malta”:

    Dr. Len Horowitz, who has always portrayed himself as a true patriot fighting against New World Order health crimes and disease, has recently become a member of the Knights of Malta, according to reports from one of their affiliate web sites.

    The outward display of ‘papal knighthood’ by Horowitz comes as a shock to a number of patriots who previously placed trust in Horowitz’s literary work in the field of disease prevention and emerging viruses.

    “This is a great disappointment,” said Eric Jon Phelps, author of the widely read book, Vatican Assassins. “May the risen Son of God, the Lord Jesus Christ, grant this racial Jew and professing Bible-believing Christian repentance for his infamous act.

    “He has betrayed his own racially Jewish/Hebrew people–massacred by Knights of Malta who were members of Himmler’s “Circle of Friends”–his racial brethren who are now slated for total annihilation here in North America thanks to Jesuit Temporal Coadjutor George Bush’s “War on Terror.”

    Horowitz could not be reached for comment.

  60. #60 Ichthyic
    May 23, 2008

    Crank Cage Match!

    …two cranks enter…

    one crank leaves.

    The other becomes convinced the exit is part of an alien conspiracy and refuses to leave for fear of being abducted.

  61. #61 Ichthyic
    May 23, 2008

    Arsenic is natural.

    …and IIRC, is still used in the treatment of some parasitic diseases, and in treating resistant leukemia.

    well, that’s what I tell the people I buy it from, anyway.
    ;)

  62. #62 AlanWCan
    May 24, 2008

    Been very busy all week so only now gettign to listen to this…
    AHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA
    AHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA
    AHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA
    AHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA
    AHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA
    AHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA
    AHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA
    AHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA
    AHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA
    WOOHOOWOOHOOWOOHOOWOOHOOWOOHOOWOOHOOWOOHOO
    AHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA

  63. #63 Ichthyic
    May 24, 2008

    @2:48 AM, Eastern time, Alan W Can died from an overdose of laughter.

    Diaphragm paralysis was given as the actual cause of death.

    Friends and family note his many contributions will be missed.

    *sniff*

  64. #64 IBY
    May 24, 2008

    That statement is so crazy that even though the guy might be honest, the hovind scale goes to 100 in my opinion

  65. #65 Pikemann Urge
    May 24, 2008

    Does anyone who insults Duesberg (a minority here, thankfully) have anything substantial to say against his book’s thesis? Or does HIV cause AIDS ‘because everyone knows it does’?

    A bit of context: Duesberg is not late to this party. He has been involved in the issue from the late ’80s. I think his book needs some updating but IMHO he is correct in his central point.

  66. #66 Ichthyic
    May 24, 2008

    Does anyone who insults Duesberg (a minority here, thankfully) have anything substantial to say against his book’s thesis?

    I think you want to ask someone who actually works with endogenous retro-viruses:

    http://scienceblogs.com/erv/

    you might search around a bit, or start your education with posts like this one:

    http://scienceblogs.com/erv/2008/05/intro_to_ervs_quick_point_abou.php

    He has been involved in the issue from the late ’80s. I think his book needs some updating but IMHO he is correct in his central point.

    “We appreciate your concern. It is noted, and stupid.”

  67. #67 Pikemann Urge
    May 25, 2008

    Thanks for the reference, Ichthyic. I’ll also be reading some of the material recommended by those in the comments section.

    One has to wonder – if HIV is so obviously the cause of AIDS, then one wouldn’t have to publish papers with (possibly unknowingly) false data (e.g. Asher in Nature 11/03/93) or rely on compromised placebo testing (the ‘phase 2′ FDA tests of AZT in the USA, I believe) or give patients medicines that haven’t been properly, rigorously, scientifically tested (i.e. AZT in the early days).

  68. #68 Ichthyic
    May 25, 2008

    one would further have to wonder about someone who supposes an endogenous retrovirus could not cause AIDS, given that anti-retroviral drugs have shown many, many, many clinical results of a positive nature (millions, in fact), aside from the one you mention.

    look up Hanlon’s razor, sometime.

    Fuck, man, we even know the exact nature of the binding sites involved:

    http://www.pubmedcentral.nih.gov/articlerender.fcgi?artid=19795

    this idea that HIV-1 doesn’t cause aids is just utter nonsense, or in the case of Deusberg, might relate to some form of mental breakdown.

    seriously, I’ve seen the man’s work, he knows better.

    I wonder how many deaths his recommendations have caused over the last 10 years or so?

  69. #69 Ichthyic
    May 25, 2008

    or give patients medicines that haven’t been properly, rigorously, scientifically tested (i.e. AZT in the early days).

    actually, AZT was one of the first anti-retroviral drugs ever developed.

    there really wasn’t much to compare it to for “rigorous testing”.

  70. #70 Pikemann Urge
    May 25, 2008

    actually, AZT was one of the first anti-retroviral drugs ever developed

    Are we talking about the same thing that Burroughs-Wellcome developed the decade before? Just want to make sure we’re on the same page.

    there really wasn’t much to compare it to for “rigorous testing”

    No, indeed, but you have to test these things for safety. Some drugs have no precedents but you still have to test for safety and quality of healing, not just how many micro-organisms that a molecule of a given substance can kill.

  71. #71 Ichthyic
    May 25, 2008

    Some drugs have no precedents but you still have to test for safety and quality of healing

    like i said, the results have been rather dramatic, and not hard to find, if you look.

    to understand how drugs like AZT work, you do have to understand something about retroviruses, though.

    I’m a behavioral ecologist, so that’s why I recommended you visit an expert on the subject (Abbie). I’d just be relying mostly on her experience and the references she has posted over the last few years anyway.

    If you have specific questions, she’d be the best one to ask around the science blog arena.

    You will, of course, also find plenty of other experts on ERV’s floating around, but let’s be clear, even though Duesberg has knowledge of viruses and cell biology (hell, just look at his publication record over the last 40 years), it’s quite obvious he has decided NOT to be an expert on ERV’s, but rather “play one on TV”.

  72. #72 Pikemann Urge
    May 25, 2008

    Yeah, I’ll take that recommendation on board. But regarding the ‘dramatic’ results of AZT, I don’t disagree that it kills HIV, in case anyone got that impression. That much is demonstrable, AFAIK.

    Why I asked about Burroughs-Wellcome: AFAIK they created it in the ’70s (or earlier) not as an anti-RV drug but as a chemotherapy drug. It was adapted later in the ’80s (again, IIRC) in the ‘war on AIDS’.

    These work, IIRC, by stopping cell reproduction (chain terminators is the term Duesberg used). The issue at hand is that they weakened the immune system, just like drugs and excessive antibiotic use did.

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