The Folly of Modern Medicine’s Zealous Supporters

The Folly of Modern Medicine’s Zealous Supporters


Recently Thom Hartmann had a guest on who was selling his book about Faith Healers.  His premise was that they were threatening the lives of children.  Therefore the government should intervene and take the kids away from the parents.  Treat them “appropriately” and then return them to their parents either dead or healed.


On another day, 11/14/13, Thom had a caller who was all upset about herbal medicine and homeopathy.


Both of these gentleman have built their houses on sand not rock.  First, faith healing is part of religious culture.  It is an interesting argument about when and if the government (usually hated by the right wing) can do the ultimate crime (in their eyes) of taking custody of a well-meaning parent’s child.  That is something that stirs the passions of many people.  Abortion is a very similar issue so to speak.


The problems with the hysteria about faith healing are two fold.  First the number of deaths alleged to be a result of “failed” faith healings is in the hundreds per decade.  All though all life is precious in the scheme of things, not a large number.


Nonetheless, most rationale people find it hard to understand that if a cure or treatment for a disease might save a life, why not try it?

Well from the point of view of the religions that don’t take drugs, etc., often children and adults as well die from the medicines and surgical procedures.  They die from faulty diagnosis as well as bad treatment, side effects of drugs and overdose either intentional or not.  Kids die and become very ill from immunizations also.


What makes this philosophical debate so puzzling is the obvious fact that different people or children die in both these circumstances.  If your kid does not get the MMR vaccine chances are he will be fine.  The Chinese believe that childhood disease actually tests and strengthens the immune system.  Although supports of the drug industry and modern medicine love to point out how much longer people in first world countries live the reality is that in Afghanistan you see plenty of old people despite the harsh conditions.  The reality is once immunity is established to the childhood diseases, intestinal microbes and various viruses and bacteria that show up in different years, the adult is immune from most disease that come from contact or are air born.  So they live long and just as long as the people here.  It looks like they have shorter lives because on average many kids die young.


So by avoiding immunizations and various treatments a different set of children survive and prosper.  Some of the otherwise healthy kids would have died from reactions to the immunizations.  So there is your moral dilemma.


By immunizing and medicating children a different set survives than if you would have left them alone to fight off or die the bugs that infect them and disease that come from other causes.


Herbs, chiropractic, acupuncture and homeopathy are not amenable to double blind testing.  Therefore using the modern protocol to evaluate their effectiveness does not work.


Hence either you can “prescribe” the herbs based on many years of “folk” remedies, some science, or through other means like muscle testing or you can dismiss them altogether and say it is up to the Red Clover Lobby to prove Red Clover works so if they can’t then it does not work.  Of course there is no Red Clover Lobby.  It is a plant that grows almost anywhere.  Not patentable (until Monsanto changes the laws).  So no incentive to do research.  To sell more drugs Big Pharma can scream that herbs are unscientific.  It is hard to argue because until money is spent researching herbs, there is no research on them.


But at the same time Big Pharma has no problem promoting “off label” use of medicines which are totally unscientific.  The law is simple.  MDs can prescribe any drug for any cause.  They can prescribe based on information from salesman, personal experience, intuition, information from other Doctors, aka hearsay, and virtually any rationale to sell the drug you can think up.  But suggesting an herb that has a thousand year history of treating a certain condition is considered unscientific.


That is the ludicrous world we have created.  Psychiatrists, by the way, the one profession that should not mess aimlessly with peoples minds prescribes off label 30 percent of the time to 25% for the general MD population.  Think about that.


So if you are offended by faith healing and herbs take a hard look at what passes for science in the Medical world.  You might be surprised.







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