Cures for Ebola! Get your cures here!

11thC_Ecbola is a frightening disease, but it isn’t very easy to be infected. It has crossed the pond, but it won’t go very far even with minor outbreaks. There won’t be anything like what’s happening in West Africa because the afflicted nations have poor overall infrastructure and you can’t be infected just by being in the same room, breathing the same air.

The symptoms appear to be a wee over-hyped and this may derive from a book called “The Hot Zone” a “non-fiction” thriller describing the origins of ebola and marburg among other viral hemorrhagic fevers. As an epidemiologist says:

“First–the description of symptoms.Preston himself admits that these were exaggerated. Over and over, he uses words like “dissolving,” “liquefy,” “bleeding out” to describe patient pathology. (If I had been playing a drinking game while reading and did a shot every time Preston uses “liquefy” in the book, I’d be dead right now).”

Following the link in the above quote, we find the author of the “non-fiction” work saying:

“In the original “Hot Zone,” I have a description of a nurse weeping tears of blood. That almost certainly didn’t happen. When a person has Ebola, the eyes can turn brilliant red from blood vessels leaking and blood oozing out of the eyelid. That’s horrifying, but it’s not someone with tears of blood running down their face.”

And that’s all that is mentioned but, if you follow the link to the epidemiologist she shows Preston, via extensive quotes from the best seller, to be very overly melodramatic:

“And I didn’t even get to what Preston says about Ebola and testicles. Or pregnant women. Seriously, there’s pages upon pages upon pages of this stuff.”

Despite Preston’s desire to correct the errors, it seems he can’t resist (from the earlier link):

“Here’s what’s terrifying about Ebola. Ebola is invisible. It’s a monster without a face. With the science that we have now, we can perceive Ebola as being not one thing but as a swarm, and the swarm is moving through the human population and expanding its numbers. It has the qualities of a monster. It’s the most important character in “The Hot Zone.” It’s the nonhuman other that all human beings are contending with in many different ways.”

That “non-fiction” book has sold over 4 million copies by now. No wonder people are so frightened. So frightened, that the quacks can sink in their talons.

homeopathy-water

First up, the homeopaths in Australia sent a letter to their PM and Health Minister informing them of a petition to the World Health Organization “urgently requesting” they distribute homeopathic remedies to break the epidemic. Amongst all the lies, what do they prescribe? Hyper diluted snake venom, phosphorus and vitamins. More specifically:

“1. Crotalus Horridus (rattlesnake venom) 2. Bothrops (yellow viper) 3. Lachesis (bushmaster snake) 4. Phosphorus 5. Merc. cor.”

Looking up the first “medicine” we are unsurprised to find a very, very long list of afflictions that can be treated from lockjaw to acne to “cancer of tongue with hemorrhage”. Sweet. Of course, cheek-by-jowl with this list is the purchase button. Here we find $7.75Cdn for 80 pellets of various potencies. Another site recommends 30C as a preventative for nearby Ebola outbreaks. In Canada. With the headline “Bioterrorism and Epidemics: Knowing Homeopathy Can Help Make the World a Less Scary Place.” Less headlines like that would be a good place to start.

Why these particular venoms? Homeopathy is based on “like curing like”. Ebola causes hemorrhaging and so do these snake venoms. Perfect, right? Phosphorus and the last item are there because they make you feel like you have Ebola if they don’t cause liquefaction of your eyes. The other thing aboot homeopathy is the faith required in dilution as it makes the medicine stronger, more powerful and paradoxically, completely safe. Unless you have Ebola.

A 30C dilution translated from homeospeak into chemistry results in a very high dilution, where there would be no chance of any original substance remaining. Considering a 13C dilution is equivalent to 1/3 of 1 drop of snake venom being squeezed into all the water on earth.

Take a glass of juice. Dump it and fill it with water 30 times. That’s 30C. Oh, and shake it 40 times before dumping, that’s the magic act that makes the “medicine” strong like bull. If 30C were to fail you, increase the dosage with 200C pills or one drop of snake venom in a pool of water as large as the visible universe. At least snake-oil salesmen had the decency to include some snake-oil in their lotions, notions and potions.

Doctor examining urine, early 1600s - Trophime_Bigot

Doctor examining urine, early 1600s – Trophime_Bigot

Next we have Ayurveda, AKA Traditional Indian Medicine. A practitioner of this ancient healing art recommends AUT. Auto Urine Therapy. You see, your immune system breaks down the virus and you piss it out. Drinking your own piss first thing in the morning – this is essential – will cause your gut to pick up these bits of Ebola and start producing anti-bodies like a vaccine. Science!

A Yoga guru, Baba Ramdev, also appears to offer a curative “health pack”, but says the website was fraudulently using his name. The spokesman for the Yoga yogi made clear however, the correct path:

“We believe in strengthening the soul, mind and body and also in boosting immunity. If a person is strong and has good immunity he or she can withstand any attack. Whatever modern medicine does not have a clinically tested conclusion for; they call it a syndrome, like AIDS. We believe in correcting the system, not managing the symptoms,”

This pissy approach is also endorsed by Tim Bolen a guy known for his quackish ways. The problem is, urine will contain complete virus, not just bits and unfortunately for this “theory”, is broken down and absorbed by the gut before it could provoke an immune response.

“These Ebola virus proteins would be broken down to forms that can’t provoke an immune response before ever getting to the gut’s immune system, given that Peyer’s patches are found in the ileum (more distal small intestine), not in the jejunum, which is where most protein digestion and absorption take place.”

And of course we have prayer. Apparently one of the nurses who recovered in the US thinks that without all the prayers she would have died despite the best efforts of the medical team. The only difference between her and the dead is modern medical care. And her arrogance.

via ABC News

God answered my prayers rather than yours. Tough eh?

Posted in Canada, Catholicism, Christianity, Ebola, healthcare, homeopathy, medicine, quackery, woo, Yoga | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Less than Minimum Wage for 9 years of slavery and rape

WKitty

ell, 10 year old immigrants need to earn their way in the new economy like anyone else, arriving in a shipping container is irrelevant.

A millionaire couple from Eccles (UK), Ilyas and Tallat Ashar were being investigated for money laundering when the girl was discovered on a cot in their cellar.

The trading standards staff searching the home quickly learned the girl was unable to communicate and had her sheltered where caregivers found her to be illiterate and deaf. The perfect servant and sperm receptacle.

The judge in the case apparently had no difficulty in ensuring the heinous couple repaid their ill gotten £ 42,000 from benefits fraud and the £ 342,000 costs of the trial. He did have issues with determining how to compensate the poor girl for 3287 days of torture.

The learned magistrate turned to Britain’s Proceeds of Crime Act which is used to take the toys away from drug kingpins. When I read this, I thought, “Oh yeah he’s gonna nail these sick phuqqes in the only place that matters to them.” But, no.

Under this Act, he calculated the value of the work slavery and rapes she was made to endure and came up with £ 100,000 as compensation. The judge based this on minimum wage, of course, 7 days a week for 12 hours a day. You’re a slave 24/7/365 but, only slaving away working for 12 hours.

Anyhoo, based on the Canukistani minimum wage of $11/hr the poor girl would have earned $11 x 12hrs x 365dys or $48,180/yr. After nine years of “employment”, her vagina would have earned a wee more than $433,620Cdn with leap years. Although those may have been her days off, no play no pay. The defense actually tried to have the slave girl’s room and board deducted from her reward.

At current exchange rates a British Pound is $1.81Cdn, which translates her pay into $181,000Cdn. That’s roughly 2.5 times less in wages for slavery and rape. It’s just cookin, cleanin and doin her wifely duties, right? What assholes lawyers can be.

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Voting Republican enables Sharia Law

Sharia Law is Republican policy approved by the same deity under a different name

Sharia Law is Republican policy approved by the same deity under a different name

WKitty

ho knew? I wonder how many in Ottawa, in their more private moments, would embrace similar sentiments.

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The upside of Ebola

EbolaEye

11thC_Ec

bola could solve America’s problems with atheism, homosexuality, sexual promiscuity, pornography and abortion,” according to Pastor Rick Wiles.

Follow the link to enjoy the poetry of The Digital Cuttlefish as the wise cephalopod skewers the all too familiar demons of a large segment of christianity – non-belief, sex of any kind and women having bodily autonomy.

Centuries of the Bibblickal Way of Knowing and nothing close to the idea of viruses was considered…

Scott Camazine/Photo Researchers, Inc.

Those dying like this:

ebola_virus-1024x660

Are part of His loving plan.

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American personhood illustrated

AmericanPersonhood

Ital_Goth_Sliding back into theocracy, the US is it seems. The recent Hobby Lobby decision by the US Supreme Court allow companies to insinuate their personal religious beliefs into the personal lives of others for healthcare and now hiring:

“The Atlantic is reporting that the letter was sent by officials of 14 organizations. It attempts to capitalize on the Supreme Court’s Hobby Lobby decision, which was handed down yesterday. The letter argues that the government must show more deference to the rights of religions.” – AlterNet

The US wastes so many legal resources on religious matters and it only seems a matter of time before Christianity is constitutionally mandated.

Posted in Antonin Scalia, Catholicism, Christianity, healthcare, medicine, politics, Religion, Scalia, SCOTUS, US | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

The “Checkout this shit from some guy named Mehmet” Show

Celtic-A Lousy Canuck has a viddy from the “Last Week Tonight” show with John Oliver. It really is worth a watch as Oliver skewers America’s most trusted Doctor, Dr. Oz, for his shameless promotion of diet fads.

Much like Congress did recently, but with laughs. Here it is:

Sadly, nothing much will come of this as the genial host of the comedy show explains, thanks to effective lobbying by two Congresscritters who also happen to collect the largest donations from the medical supplement industry. Combined with the toothless FTC & FDA regulations and plus ca change…

That mainstream news doesn’t have as much detail and depth is a shame.

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Schizophrenia is just spiritual messaging, truly

Little_Demon

F_caprom Pharyngula we learn from the Journal of Religion and Health the latest in mental health care for those suffering with schizophrenia.

The publication is an “international interdisciplinary journal which publishes original peer-reviewed articles that deal with mental and physical health in relation to religion and spirituality of all kinds.” You’d think it must be trustworthy, and cutting edge.

In the latest edition from June 2014 appeared an article by Dr. Kemal Irmak, of the High Council of Science, Gulhane Military Medical Academy, Ankara, Turkey. There’s more authority to trust. Dr. Irmak posits a new, radical cause for schizophrenia:

“We thought that many so-called hallucinations in schizophrenia are really illusions related to a real environmental stimulus. One approach to this hallucination problem is to consider the possibility of a demonic world.”

Demonic possession. Sounds more like something written in June 1420. The reasoning behind this ancient conclusion:

“Demons are unseen creatures that are believed to exist in all major religions and have the power to possess humans and control their body. Demonic possession can manifest with a range of bizarre behaviors which could be interpreted as a number of different psychotic disorders with delusions and hallucinations.”

Such a common sense revolution, it’s hard to believe there are those who doubt these facts. Considering the prestige of the journal and the considerable office of the author, one can only agree that:

“The hallucination in schizophrenia may therefore be an illusion—a false interpretation of a real sensory image formed by demons.”

Islam advances our medical knowledge yet again. If it wasn’t for these guys and the christians, we’d still be in the dark ages.

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History of Man and Nature

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Frequencies

frequency

15thC-XKCD has up an interesting graphic, not really a comic, showing the Frequencies of many things. Click on any of the images to see the full effect of the original. A small sampling:

heartbeat vibrator

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Sophisticated Ham on Nye

Buddy Jesus roaming The Middle East according to Ken Ham - actually from page 8 of the Beginner's Bible Coloring Book - with coloring hints for the wee bairns

Ken Ham’s history of the Middle East

15thC Recently there was a televised debate between Bill Nye, The Science Guy and Creationist Museum founder Ken Ham over, what else, evolution. Watch it at the bottom if you dare. Ham The Man makes me want to throw things at the TV so I haven’t bothered. I know the schtick of his con. There are varying reviews out there, such as an evolutionary biologist or from someone tone trolling both sides or here in comic form.

The other day, a Sophisticated Theologian, soon to be adorned with a PhD, wrote into the Toronto Star taking both debaters to task for “ignoring all the more nuanced positions between these two polar opposites”. Here’s the nascent Doctor of Tall Tales explaining that the guys just weren’t doing proper theology (my comments in bold):

It’s Science Guy vs. creationist, Feb. 4

“Despite the debate’s hype, it failed to deliver. Although Bill Nye is a gifted science educator for children and Ken Ham a well-meaning Christian, the debate seemed to be more counter-productive than anything.

Let’s be clear, the debate failed to deliver the answer Ventureyra wanted – doG did it on the sly.

closed minded?

Bill Nye – closed minded?

The media thrives on pinning polar opposites against one another, as is seen between the views of Nye and Ham. They pit Christian fundamentalism on one side and atheistic materialism on the other, while ignoring all the more nuanced positions that exist in between these two polar opposites.

The media was not involved in setting up this event, they merely report on it. It was arranged by Ham at his Ark Park because Nye said teaching children Creationism is harmful to them and society as a whole.

It should be pointed out that, in order to be a Christian, one need not accept a literal interpretation of the book of Genesis nor a young earth. However, the debate was fixated on the age of the earth and universe.

open minded

Ken Ham – open minded?

This fella doesn’t seem to realize Ham just knows in his heart that the earth is aboot 6000 years old – a YEC who most certainly does take the BuyBull literally as do 42% of Americans as of 2005. Add another 18% with a more nuanced view that involves life evolving “over time through a process guided by a Supreme Being” and, of course, the timeline becomes a major sticking point.

Nye provided some good arguments for accepting a universe and earth of billions of years, whereas Ham missed his opportunity to discuss and provide evidence for the various signposts to the design of the universe itself, the laws of physics and chemistry, the first self-replicating system, consciousness and other such indicators.

Ventureyra glosses over anything Nye may have said and shows, again, his ignorance of what Ham is about. It isn’t the laws of physics and chemistry or any scientific indicators of any kind – these are anathema. Ham is all Biblical authority, nothing else. Authority which our Catholic scribe is here attempting to describe as scientific signposts.

Ironically, it was Nye defending big bang cosmology, one of the most compelling arguments for design and creation. Mr. Ham did make a couple of valid points though, namely that one need not necessarily be an evolutionist to be a good scientist and that the term evolution (there are at least six viable different meaning to the term) is often conflated.

Ah yes, the God of the Final Gap anally coughing up creation, re branded all science-like as let there be light The Big Bang. With this argument, Ventureyra reveals himself to be an Old Earth Creationist, like very many liberal Christian cultists who bleat a very similar non-literal reading of the BuyBull. Unlike most Christians Ventureyra has probably read the whole Bibble. Since he is a Sophisticated Theologian, he likely applies the Augustinian “get outta jail free card” – all nice things in the Buybull are true, while all the hatred, violence & genocide are metaphorical.

Ham’s “valid points”, neither of which offer any evidence for Creationism, are almost nonsense. Being a good scientist depends on being able to say “I don’t know” and, when evidence mounts, “Hmmm, seems my idea is wrong”. Good scientists don’t assign supernatural agency to things they don’t understand, regardless of their field of study. While the various meanings of evolution may be conflated, I’ll bet quatloos to doughnuts it isn’t good scientists doing the conflating.

In my humble opinion, these two represent extremely narrow views in terms of the science-religion debates. According to their presentations neither of them seem to have been keeping up with advancements in science, philosophy, nor developments in the science-theology dialogue.” – Scott Ventureyra, PhD Theology (candidate), Dominican University College, Ottawa

What we have here is someone playing bagpipes while attempting to appear wise and open minded by adopting a middle position regardless of the evidence either speaker may have supporting their argument. Truth be told, the good Doctoral Candidate has no more sophisticated evidence than the Creationist. It is quite possible Ham wouldn’t even consider the fledgling Papist a Christian.

Posted in Bill Nye, Catholicism, Christianity, evolutiom, Jesus, Ken Ham, philosophy, Religion | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments