A NEW BIOLOGICAL PARADIGM

A NEW BIOLOGICAL PARADIGM

by John R. Benneth

“Radio has no future. Heavier-than-air flying machines are impossible. X-rays will prove to be a hoax.” — Lord Kelvin, renowned British scientist, 1899.

“There is not the slightest indication that nuclear energy will ever be obtainable. It would mean that the atom would have to be shattered at will.” — Albert Einstein, world’s greatest genius 1932.

“If anyone shows the concepts of homeopathy to be correct, he or she becomes a serious contender for one or two Nobel prizes. Homeopaths often say that we simply have not yet discovered how homeopathy works. The truth is that we know there is no conceivable scientific explanation that could possibly explain it.” Edzard Ernst, top homeopathy antagonist, from “Why I Changed My Mind About Homeopathy.”

But there is a scientific explanation to explain it. We’re led to it by the evidence of action . .

In case you didn’t know, the man who made the last quote, ex-Professor Edzard Ernst of Exeter University, has been the world’s major antagonist of the curative medical doctrine of homeopathy, emphasis on has been. Ernst was professor of complementary medicine at Exeter University, he was the world’s first chair of it. For a while he was riding high, scoring better than James “the Amazing” Randi, a failed magician who became the world’s greatest skeptic and homeopathy basher, accusing anyone who practiced it of fraud..

But Exeter canned Ernst and his star began to sputter.  And Randi has grown silent after being exposed in complicitly of identity theft and fraud and in using homeopathy during bouts with stomach cancer and heart disease.

The half recant was published in The Guardian, which protects the interests of the pharmaceutical companies by characterizing homeopathy as bunk.

Apparently Ernst’s phone stopped ringing: Now he says he’s changed his mind about homeopathy.

TOP ANTAGONIST SAYS HE FLIPS ON HOMEOPATHY

Well, like most of the things he writes, on closer inspection you find it’s not true.  He hasn’t changed his mind about anything. Read the article and you’ll find he ‘s still spouting the same . . well, I hate to use the word lies, so let’s just say misinformation.

ERNST: “Yet as a clinician almost 30 years ago I was impressed with the results achieved by homeopathy. Many of my patients seemed to improve dramatically after receiving homeopathic treatment. How was this possible?”

With dramatic improvement? 

The man is full of contradictions. He says that if the axioms of homeopathy were true, then much of what we learned in physics and chemistry would be wrong.

UNCONVINCED

Let us try to get this straight. The anti-homoepathy crowd’s premier reference for the case against homeopathy is now saying that he’s seen it work with dramatic improvement in a clinical setting,  when in his “Systemaic Review of Systematic Reviews of Homeopathy,” which he penned after his work as a clinician, he says  “the clinical evidence and the basic research underpinning homeopathy remain unconvincing.”

So which is it? And where’s all the scientific literature to support whatever reason Ernst thinks there is to explain how it is that his patients improved so dramatically, just as where’s all the evidence that proves it’s a placebo? Was it his Svengali bedside manner? Was it Mesmerism? Alcohol?

What was it?

He then makes a statement that is provably wrong.

Referring to 200 clinical studies he says, “Over a dozen systematic reviews of homeopathy have been published. Almost uniformly, they come to the conclusion that homeopathic remedies are not different from placebo.”

I’m afraid this may send him looking for a brace of pistols in his sock drawer, or an epee’ hanging next to the garden rake in the garage, but I have to say it, it’s always so embarrassing when an . . as oxymoronic as it may sound . . an academic of Ernst’s stature is caught in a verifiable lie.

No comprehensive, honest review of the literature has concluded  what Ernst is claiming. 

Did the editors of The Guardian know about this? Did any of their fact checkers check it out?

There have essentially been three major accepted reviews of the literature pubslihed in  (1.) British Medical Journal (BMJ) by Kleijnen et al; (2.) University of York for the U.K. National Health Service (NHS) by Cucherat et al; and (3.) Lancet by Linde et al.

1.) NHS Cucherat 2000: HOMEOPATHY NOT PLACEBO: Found evidence that homeopathy was more effective than placebo. University of York/ NHS

2.) LANCET Linde 1997: HOMEOPATHY NOT PLACEBO: results not compatible with placebo hypothesis

3.)  BMJ Kleijnen 1991HOMEOPATHY NOT PLACEBO:The results showed a positive trend regardless of the quality of the trial or the variety of homeopathy used.

In addition to these high quality meta analyses, published in high impact medical journals, there are the following:

FISHER: High quality repeated experiments yield positive results tinyurl com/7666q5g

JOHNSON 2007: metas find homeopathy significantly better than placebo tinyurl com/7htoejq

SHANG 2005/ Ludtke Rutten: find significant homeopathic effect beyond placebo tinyurl com/ludtkerutten

[Remember to put a dot between tinryurl and com after pasting into your browser]

Now note this in your hornbook: NO CONCLUSIVE REVIEW OF THE LITERATURE FINDS THAT HOMEOPATHIC REMEDIES ARE “PLACEBOS”!!! And yet in the face of this we are repeatedly told by opponents of homeopathy that homeopathic remedies are placebos, implying that the pharmacy is inert,  and because the medicine is inert, homeopathy is a hoax. 

HAPPY HALLOWEEN

The medical  community has had the evidence for the clinical action of the materials before them for years, including the stark evidence that the pharmacy is not inert in the published reports of its action on plants, animals and biochemicals.

So why  are we being so desperately and obviously lied to?

The Royal Homoeopath vs. the Medical Journalist

It must beggar the imagination for the opponents of homeopathy to learn of the high and mighty’s endorsement of such, or it must fuel within their minds a kind of begrudging cynicism, that insists fools must by chance alone attain greatness. Mark Twain, John D. Rockefeller, Mahatma Ghandi, Mary Baker Eddy; Paul McCartney; Mariel Hemmingway; David Beckham; Sir William Osler; Twiggy; Tina Turner; Caprice; Susan Hampshire; C. Everett Koop, M.D. ; Louise Jameson; Catherine Zeta Jones; Gaby Roslin; Catherine Zeta-Jones; Jude Law; Sadie Frost, Nadia Sawalha; Jennifer Aniston; Jade Jagger; Roger Daltry, Annabel Croft; Meera Syal; Charles Dickens; W.B. Yeats; William Thackeray; Benjamin Disraeli; William James; Pope Pius X; Louisa May Alcott, Susan B. Anthony, William Lloyd Garrison, Daniel Webster, Harriet Beecher Stowe, Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, William Seward, Feodor Dostoevsky; Jackson Pollock; W.C. Fields; Dr. Robert Mendelsohn, MD; Dr. Chas. Frederick Menninger, MD; Charles Darwin; Nobelists Emil Von Behring, Brian Josephson and Luc Montagnier; former American Presidents James Garfield, William McKinley, Abraham Lincoln and Bill Clinton, about 500 American MDs and 300 British MDs, and reportedly about 5000 non MD practitioners in the US . . to name a few, have all been at least favorable, supportive or admiring of homeopathy if not regular users or openly enthusiastic about it.

Such a conundrum must plague their minds in the case of the English Royal family, under homeopathic care since 1830.  There has always been a Royal Homeopathic Doctor. Currently he is Dr. Peter Fisher, MD.

Whereas homeopathy antagonists, usually atheists, can dismiss the credible use of homeopathics by the creative, it must give them pause that such savvies, like atheistic Darwin, street smart Twain and the world’s richest man, the self made Rockefeller, could brook if not quietly use what scoffers have to insist is nonsense, “plain water” . .  or witchcraft.

But for the serious student of homeopathy the puzzle is why homeopaths haven’t been more influential, why they haven’t said more when the case for homeopathy is so strong and it’s paralegal opposition so weak, nothing much more than carping.

Recently in an online homeopathy discussion list, what should be the strongest voice for homeopathy, Royal Homeopath Dr. Peter Fisher, MD, has come under some criticism for what some consider a weak performance in a debate with medical journalist and homeopathy antagonist Ben Goldacre. a well known complainer noted for his constant lopsided criticism of any study, test, experiment, trial or review of the literature that favorably concludes for homeopathy. In fact, such doesn’t even need to be favorable to attract Goldacre’s ire.  All any study of homeopathy need to do for Goldacre to launch an attack on it is fail to condemn it.

In this rather tame duel, Fisher and Goldacre present their respective points and then field some soft balls pitched from the audience, when there are some of us in the homeopathic community who would like to see Fisher tear Goldacre limb from metaphorical limb . . and not necessarily because Goldacre deserves it, but because Fisher can.

My response to this is to ask that we give Fisher a break.  Isn’t he the one who took the spurious Shang metanalysis to the Discreditor’s Ball, held the antagonist’s major piece of bullshit to account by calling for the raw data? We should be down on our knees thanking the guy for the incredible work he’s done for homeopathy. He’s a real MD as opposed to this “medical journalist” clown Goldacre, who just pretends to be an MD. Of course this is just my opinion, but I think that if Goldacre ever actually treated somebody for a disease he’d be at risk of getting thrown in jail for murder.

When I was in England I invited Goldacre to my lecture on the supramolecular chemistry of homeopathy at Cambridge and away he ran, and when I took him to task for it all he could do was whine. He’s quite full of words when he’s sitting in front of a computer montior, but he’s been as loud as Grant’s tomb on a Monday morning when he’s sitting in front of someone he knows will take him to task.

Fisher, on the other hand, is a gentleman, and given his office must maintain the dignity of his position, and as such has to maintain a bedside manner, treat everyone as a patient and therefore sympathize with the sick bastard. As editor of Homeopathy Magazine, with a Royal Warrant sticking out of his back pocket, due to his titles alone Fisher is indeed probably the strongest single voice there is for homeopathy. The limb tearing should be left to the tattooed class.

The very fact that Fisher exists is alone a huge testimonial for homeopathy. But more than that he’s done most excellent work in rebutting the UK Parliament’s cherry picked ‘Evidence Check’ for the efficacy of homeopathy, specifically in his Memorandum to the UK Parliament on Evidence from Basic Research [ http://tinyurl.com/7666q5g ] and it is from this a telling point, a killshot, arises.

It’s in the Memo’s first line: “Its ‘implausibility’ from a scientific standpoint is often cited as a reason for scepticism about homeopathy, even in the face of positive clinical evidence. For instance a systematic review of clinical trials, published in the BMJ stated ‘we would accept that homoeopathy can be efficacious, if its mechanism of action were more plausible’.”

What?  “Its mechanism of action were more plausible”??

Now if the opposition was on its toes, a statement like this would set them back on their heels, if not flatten them. I say, and submit to you, that the reason it hasn’t flattened anyone is because they’re already there, prostrate, just as much as the corpse that made the statement.

Here, let me explain: What the British Medical Journal (BMJ, impact factor 17.215) is saying is the argument homeopathy has not been the putative, that there is no evidence of effective action . . no! What they are allowing, if not outright saying, is that they would accept the effectiveness of homeopathy if somebody would explain it to them! LOL! This is tantamount to a man falling off a ledge, and on the way down, proclaiming that he would accept the force of gravity if somebody could tell him how it works!

Up until this point, the rejection of homeopathy was supposed to be a cavalcade of absent evidence . . “Oh, homeopathy is not evidence based medicine” when in fact homeopathy, as anomalous as it may be, has never had the luxury of conventional hypotheses and theory . . evidence has been all it’s had, the evidence of action has been the sole cherry red river that’s driven its mill.

When the Internet began to transmit the actual record of pre-clinical and clinical trials, the attack on homeopathy had to shift from absent evidence to bad evidence and the suddenly discovered science had frantically picked apart by scientists-in-name-only (SINO) like Goldacre, with vituperative criteria reserved only for homeopathy.

Here’s a video of a debate, the Royal Homoeopath vs. the Medical Journalist.

The Jesus Crime: Thou Shalt Not Cure

I keep thinking that one blog ought to be a set up for another and that’s not how I like to think, but its come to the point where I have to forego the luxury of random access thinking, the thought pattern of what hey have labelled as attention deficiency disorder and deliver some sequential material. Critical mass has developed and now its time for a chain reaction.

In my last blog I threw out some rhetorical questions regarding The Economist magazine’s use of a debunked debunking of homeopathy, having already figured what the answer is.

One tragedy follows another. The Economist’s attack on homeopathy for its unidentifiable ingredient is nothing new. Hahnemann was chased out of Konigslutter over two hundred years ago because he too could not chemically identify what the active ingredient of the medicine was that he used in the Scarlatina epidemic there, other than to say that it was water tinged with Belladonna, and subsequently he was in such a hurry to leave town that his overloaded wagon overturned on a bridge, killing one of his children.

I know I’m a little hard on people sometimes, and before I wake up I counsel myself into thinking right rules over kindness, which is bunk, of course, but I have seen it take its course, and The Economist is neither right nor kind in their attack on homeopathy, it’s a solicitation of malice and an interference with trade, but I suppose after seeing James Randi and his ilk get away with it at TED lectures and the sort, they think its okay to characterize we homeopaths as fools and charlatans.

One thing I’ve found that homeopathy has done for me is having made me a little more circumspect about people, even those who are after my hide. There is a tremendous motivation behind the attacks on homeopathy, and the absence of traditional science, like chemistry and physics, is really nothing more than a letter of marque for the opposition to carry, 007 license to kill the doctrine..

WHAT IS IT?

Well, doctors are a jealous bunch. Like most poor fessionals, academics and vampires, they are envious of one another, especially the square footage of one another’s private gaols, the number of victims he has on leashes, his literary acclaim, and the money he makes from dope dealing.

Doctor means teacher, and as soon as he teaches he depletes his store of an easily replicable commodity; if he cures somebody they go away and never return; if he lets the cat out of the bag it threatens a chain reaction, which is exactly what the nuclear physics of the homeopathic remedy is, a chain reaction. And so it is understandable that he and Them, his pharmaceutical handlers are intent on preventing critical mass from accumulating, and the patent medical industry serves him well in preventing it, by sending out Pharisees to work the crowd into a snarling mob, through the media and various institutions, sometimes nakedly so.

Working for Them he can get out of the poverty of the teaching business and move on to the bonanza of taking hostages, made possible by Them. Predators need a constant supply of victims, and this is now what the health scare industry hath wrought, an unending spat line of miserable souls slouching over tests, sliding injto MRI’s, spreading for speculums, taking time, making trouble and lots and lots of money from a never ending supply of victims that now constitutes the single greatest chunk of the modern Pax American economy, hence the concern by The Economist and Wikipedia, magicians and foils, to block, sabotage or crush any attempt to thwart Them.

Comes now this cheeky little doctrine of curative medicine. The very gall, can you imagine it? How dare they violate the Golden Rule of Medicine? It’s the Jesus Crime, Thou Shalt Not Cure.

Like a union shop, some young buck comes on the floor and starts actually doing some real work, making everyone else look bad and lazy . . and doing it for free!

Crucify him!

And the license for it is it is unexplainable, that there is no logic, rhyme or reason . . there is no Technogogue, no Science god to back it up!

It’s voodoo!

Well, it’s not voodoo, and the government is playing along with this not-so-little hoax, like everyone else in the health scare business, when the government, as holder of standards and measures, should be the first to stand up and say what it is, explain the physics of cure.

Are we supposed to really buy into this explanation that there is no explanation for the action we’ve seen of these materials on human and non human subjects for over 200 years? Is that supposed to stop us, because Jommy Wales, James Randi and The Economist don’t know and probably won’t ever know how the magic works?

But it doesn’t, the government doesn’t really investigate: The US Department of Health’s website for the National Center for Complimentary and Alternative Medicine under the National Institutes of Health(NIH)  states, “A number of the key concepts of homeopathy are not consistent with fundamental concepts of chemistry and physics. For example, it is not possible to explain in scientific terms how a remedy containing little or no active ingredient can have any effect.”

What is ironic about the NIH is that a former director of he NIH, Wayne Jonas, M.D. demonstrated at Walter Reed in a test for the Department of Defense that a homeopathic dilution of Tularemia could inoculate mice against rabbit fever. And this is not idiopathic, there are thousands of examples of the effects of diluents on human and non-human subjects. When he died, Hahnemann alone reportedly left behind 100,000 case notes. And with hundreds of years experience with it, all the thousands of books about homeopathy, schools dedicated to teaching physicians how to use it, and the M.D.’s who do, we’re supposed to still believe that it’s a hoax?

And it’s just not true that it can’t be explained, it is possible to explain in scientific terms how an aqueous solution containing little or no active ingredient can have an effect on an organism, in scientific terms as well as unscientific terms that anyone can understand, what the physico-chemistry of homeopathy is. And however arrogant this may seem, with a little help from existing science and my friends, I intend to do so . .

The Homeopathic Cure of The Economist

It has long been held that unless you have studied the literature surrounding it and put it to an appropriate test, if you can’t say anything good about homeopathy, don’t say anything at all, because it will probably come off looking vituperative, read like a caviling complaint, stupid and flat out wrong.

 On April 1st, 2014, the same day as my last blog . . The Homeopathic Cure of Wikipedia . . The Economist posted another smug anti-homoeopathic cavil, and it will have about as much impact as another day in a 200 year old infection that’s been bugging Mankind, the disease being somewhere north of stupidity and south of deception.

Stupid or deceived, I have a hard time deciding which affliction any particular homeopathy antagonist is presenting, and I’m sure that’s exactly what they wonder of me. Touche’ a droit, et a gauche.

But my explanation for the physics of the homeopathic remedy I think are better than what I’ve got for why homeopathy isn’t accepted pandemically.

The article dodges around the usual rabidity about no active ingredients, the drooling “its just plain water” complaint. Well, the same thing could be said about Tritium, oxygen and hydrogen, the active ingredient of a chain reaction in a hydrogen bomb . .  and this a good corollary for the homeopathic remedy, just plain water except it has become radioactive. And this is not the only thing to blow up in the face of people who play gotcha with homoeopathy.

Homeopaths don’t like that explanation either. The devil they have in skepticism is an easier one to deal with than the one who resides in the physics of homeopathy, which are supramolecular and akin to the piezo electric effect.

But before my physics lecture gets me sued by Sominex for unfair competition by putting people to sleep without charge, or homeopathy for revealing a trade secret, allow me to return to the lies being spread by that rag with a one word oxymoron for a name:

The Economist says, “The most comprehensive review of homeopathy was published in 2005 in the Lancet, a medical journal. Researchers compared trials of homeopathic and conventional medicines. In the bigger, well-designed trials, there was ‘no convincing evidence’ that homeopathy was more effective than a placebo, they found.”

This is a lie. Now don’t take that as an insult, I admire a good liar. Pulitzer prizes are regularly awarded to people who, in a particularly good novel, have demonstrated an unusual talent for prevarication. Isn’t the word “fiction” just a civil replacement for a pack of lies? Of course it is. Story telling is just another way of getting our minds off the grisly truth.

And that’s what The Economist is doing here, the truth being that homoeopathy is a threat to the economics of the medical establishment.

What the smarmy author of The Economist is doing is quoting Shang, a debunked meta analysis of eight clinical trials cherry picked out of over 100 that appeared in Lancet in 2005 after the medical world was made especially miserable by Linde, a previous meta published in Lancet in 1997, of which the top critic of homeopathy at the time, Professor of Complementary Medicine Edzard Ernst of Exeter University, called “technically superb.”

After Shang hit the streets homeopaths began asking, where did they come up with this idea that homeopathics were no better than placebos?

Peter Fisher, MD, the Royal Physician and a practicing homeopath himself, asked to see the data. Shang refused, at first, then finally had to relent.

In a review of the literature for pharmacists, so they might form a more comprehensive view than the one presented by the The Economist, the American Journal of Pharmaceutical Education reported, “In contrast to findings by Kleijnen and Linde, a 2005 meta-analysis by Shang et al that was published in Lancet found that the efficacy of homeopathic treatment was no different than placebo.51 However, this study has been highly criticized for being methodologically flawed on many levels.52-61 Of particular concern, the researchers eliminated 102 of 110 homeopathic trials and based their conclusions on only the 8 largest high-quality trials without clearly identifying the criteria by which these trials were selected or the identity of these trials. Odds ratios calculated before the exclusions (on all 110 trials) do not support their ultimate conclusion that homeopathic interventions are no better than placebo.” [1]

So why is The Economist taking sides in such an acrimonious and long standing feud with bogus information sources to support a view less than neutral? Why isn’t it good enough that a growing number of people are asking for homeopathy in their health care? Why is The Economist inserting itself between patients and their physicians? Why is it that The Economist is reporting the conclusions of a highly criticized analysis of homoeopathy and not better ones reporting findings contrary to what The Economist is reporting?

April Fools?

 People will continue going to homeopaths as a last resort, some will report miraculous cures, and others, usually those who haven’t tried it, will cry fraud.

A blog follows The Economist article with commentary by readers.

[1] Am J Pharm Educ. 2007 February 15; 71(1): 07.

Where Does Homeopathy Fit in Pharmacy PracticeTeela Johnson, HonBSc and Heather Boon, BScPhm, PhD

The Homeopathic Cure of Wikipedia

Wikipedia falsifies the placebo claim for homeopathy . . again, shilling  for pharma

Wikipedia has been caught for a third time frantically producing false information about homeopathy on  a shifting footnote intended to support a hypothesis that homeopathic medicine is a “placebo.” A placebo is defined by Wikipedia as a sham treatment intended to deceive recipients.

The problem is that reviews of clinical tests of homeopathy, published in the British Medical Journal and the Lancet, among others, have all shown that the collective weight of clinical trials shows that the ionized pharmaceuticals used in homeopathic medicine are not placebos.

Wikipedia has therefore had to misrepresent the literature,  pretending to quote (1) a systematic review by a defrocked  professor of complementary medicine who garnered a reputation as the world’s leading homeopathy antagonist (2) a US government website that says nothing about placebos and (3) currently, at the time of this writing, the leading meta analysis of clinical trials that actually concludes homeopathics are not placebos.

The Wikipedia article says: “Homeopathic remedies are found to be no more effective than a placebo,[2] defining placebo as “a simulated or otherwise medically ineffectual treatment for a disease or other medical condition intended to deceive the recipient.”

The article is locked down, preventing a rewrite neutral to the facts. Wikipedia founder Jimmy Wales has voiced vituperative opposition to homeopathy, calling it the work of charlatans. The talk session of the article is a jumble of opinions by trolls trying to figure out how to reconcile contradicting conclusions in meta analyses, looking for evidence to support the placebo hypothesis in credible publications, and not finding it.

The  scuttlebutt is that whoever wrote the article was hired to keep it in flux by pharmaceutical industry interests, like the Geneva based International Federation of Pharmaceutical Manufacturers & Associations, (IFPMA) for which Wikipedia admittedly provides advertising space. The use of ionized pharmaceuticals, as used in homoeopathy, could break the strangle hold current conventional pharmaceuticals have on modern medicine, and so must be suppresed.

Footnote number two in the WIkipedia homeopathy article seems to prove it. Prior to the current footnote, footnote  number two, which traditionally has been the footnote supporting its placebo accusation,  led to an article by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, National Institutes of Health, National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine (NCCAM) that says nothing about homeopathics being placebos. The NCCAM article is entitled Homeopathy: An Introduction (click here and read it for yourself if you don’t believe it).

This changed within the last few hours of publication of this article, as if they’re watching my keystrokes. Now it leads to the 1997 Linde meta analysis published in the Lancet, what homeopathy antagonist Edzard Ernst called “technically superb.” Linde is considered to be the best review of he literature, but is now 17 years old. Linde stated their results were incompatible with the placebo hypothesis, the opposite of what Wikipedia says it said. .

If you’re familiar with Wikipedia’s pseudoscience and fake academic “research” by hired shills for the pharmaceutical industry trying to take attention off their culpability in spawning breasts on boys and two headed girls, then you can imagine pornmeister Jimmy Wales standing in front of a table full of geeks saying something like, “just use any old article, nobody reads the footnotes, I mean you could link it to Bomis and the wikisuckers still won’t check it out.”

The U.S.’s  NCCAM article refused to say what Wikipedia wanted them to say, so the Wiki editors probaly had to switch back to Linde, which addresses the placebo hypothesis directly, but contradicts their undying  insistence that homeopathic remedies are no more effective than placebos.

Perhaps one of the editors actually read the NCCAM article and then hurriedly kicked some cat litter over it and nervously went back to something more sustainable, to make the placebo claim. Give the appearance of attribution and people will think it is.

But when Linde’s 1997 results are read they say:

“The results of our meta-analysis are not compatible with the hypothesis that the clinical effects of homoeopathy are completely due to placebo.”

The reason Wikipedia likes Linde is because in a susequent addendum Linde moderated their results by saying that more rigorous trials revealed less positive results. But Linde never recanted their basic statement that homeopathic remedies are not placebos.

Linde is not the only meta analysis that blows up in the face of those who are desperate to disprove homeopathy.

A 1991 systematic review of clinical trials, published in the British Medical Journal stated:

The amount of positive evidence even among the best studies came as a surprise to us. Based on this evidence we would be ready to accept that homoeopathy can be efficacious, if only the mechanism of action were more plausible . .  “The evidence presented in this review would probably be sufficient for establishing homoeopathy as a regular treatment for certain indications. There is no reason to believe that the influence of publication bias, data massage, bad methodology, and so on is much less in conventional medicine, and the financial interests for regular pharmaceutical companies are many times greater. Are the results of randomised double blind trials convincing only if there is a plausible mechanism of action? Are review articles of the clinical evidence only convincing if there is a plausible mechanism of action? Or is this a special case because the mechanisms are unknown or implausible?Kleijnen J, Knipschild P, ter Riet G. Clinical trials of homoeopathy, British Medical Journal, 1991; 302: 316–323. tinyurl com/kleijnen

If it’s saying what you  want it to say, or, if you know it isn’t true, and you’re motivated to expose the lie, if you have the conviction of your beliefs, it’ll be your red meat, or fakin’ bacon if you’re vegan.

So now who’s administering placebos?

The word “placebo” does not even appear in the NCCAM article, the article that up to a few hours ago Wikipedia listed as its validaiton for the placebo claim. The NCCAM article does not describe homeopathic treatment to be ineffectual or intended to deceive, as Wikipedia suggested it would.

The word “homeopathy” refers to the phenomenon of like cures like, as is seen in the use of vaccines. In an effort to maintain equilibrium, organisms can react intensively to small doses of toxins, especially when dissociated. Hahnemann’s word homoeopathy (meaning same suffering) or the putative word homeopathy (meaning similar suffering) do not refer to the material phase of a pharmacuetical’s content as solid, liquid, gaseous or plasma (ionized). Any phase of matter can induce a homoeopathic reaction. Homeopathic medicines are noted for their use of the ionized pharmaceuticals, created by molecular dissociation when serially diluted in water, but the homeopathic application is not limited to ionized materials.

In the U.S., homeopathic remedies are regulated by the Federal Drug Administration. The original rules covering the use of homeopathics were a part of the Food Drug and Cosmetic Act sponsored by Senator Royal S. Copeland, M.D. (D-NY), a homeopath.

That’s right. Your eyes are not deceiving you, you are not hallucinating.

The Godfather of the FDA was a homeopath.

Like the current reference to Linde, the NCCAM article implies the opposite of what Wikipedia claimed it said. The NCCAM article states,

“While many homeopathic remedies are highly diluted, some products sold or labeled as homeopathic may not be highly diluted; they can contain substantial amounts of active ingredients. Like any drug or dietary supplement that contains chemical ingredients, these homeopathic products may cause side effects or drug interactions. Negative health effects from homeopathic products of this type have been reported.”

The NCCAM article was not the first time Wikipedia was caught falsifying the placebo claim. This blog made note of the same charge in its entry on January 29th, 2012. (Wikipedia and the Case Against Homeopathy)

At that time the Wikipedia article on Homeopathy read, “The collective weight of scientific evidence has found homeopathy to be no more effective than a placebo.[2][3][4][5][6]

BACK TO LINDE

As you can see, WIkipedia is caught in a crossfire of its own references. Like a ping pong match, once again, tracing back to footnote number two we found, at the end of the rainbow, Edzard Ernst’s Systematic Review of Systematic Reviews of Homeopathy, which stated,

“The existence of contradicting evidence is not unusual in therapeutics. One solution to resolve such contradictions is to conduct systematic reviews and meta-analyses of rigorous studies. In 1997, Linde et al did just that. The conclusions of this technically superb meta-analysis expressed the notion that homeopathic medicines are more than mere placebos.”

Not one major meta analysis has been able to effectively conclude that the action of homeopathic remedies is due solely to the placebo effect. Not even Shang, the most popular homeopathy meta analysis among skeptics, was able to clearly conclude that the effect was from chance, iatrogenesis or “placebo,” admitting “a weak effect.” A review of the data by independent analysis of Shang determined that even in this most damning meta of homeopathy, ”Homeopathy had a significant effect beyond placebo.” Ludtke Rutten

The literature for the homeopathic placebo simply doesn’t exist. The urban legend was a badly executed deception popularized by James Randi 14 years ago to support his phony offer of one million dollars ($1,000,000) to prove homeopathy, an offer that his supporters, which includes the pharmaceutical drug industry, are still desperately hanging onto as proof that homeopathy is unprovable.

The question remains, who wrote the Homeopathy article for Wikipedia, and how much were they paid, out of whose pocket?

Homeopathy or Homoeopathy?

The Difference Between

Homeopathy and

Homoeopathy  

For your edification

by John Benneth

Homeopathy literally means “similar suffering.” Homoeopathy means “same suffering.” The difference may seem perplexing in that Hahnnemann condemned the use of homeopathy and endorsed homoeopathy

If you’ve been following my blog you may have noticed that my writing since October has been making use of another spelling of homeopathy . . homoeopathy. This may appear to be no more a deference to archaic typography or style, but it actually reveals yet another critical misunderstanding of the doctrine made by many, and so before I sink any deeper into the subject, a notation herein is made that leads to a deeper insight into curative medicine.

It is one of the great ironies that the two words refer to similar, yet subtly different concepts. And so I must say, that as much as this may be upsetting to the homeocognoscenti, the difference is critically important in understanding the proper use of the materia medica.

October 23, 2013 the legendary physicist and statistician Dr. Rolland Conte [1] sent me the following quote of Samuel Hahnemann:

“I will only speak of those who have written homeopathy and homeopathic instead of homoeopathy and homoeopathic. With this they demonstrate that they do not know the substantial difference between homoios and homoousios, and they believe both words are synonyms. Would they have never heard speaking of that what the whole world knows, the separation into two irreconcilable branches generated in the past in the Christian church, by the infinite difference between homoios and homoousios ? Would they sufficiently have ignored the ancient Greek language for not to know that homoios means similar and homoousios analogue ? Never ever has homoeopathy claimed to heal the illnesses through the same power as the one that generates them ; she wishes to achieve it through a power which is not at all identical, but only analogue, through a medicine that can only produce a morbid state analogue to the illness.” [2]

Leave it to Dr. Conte to reveal to me something others seem to have missed . . at least so far on the WWW: I ran a search on the Hahnemann quote to see who else might be clued in on this and have some commentary, but did not find it, it was nowhere posted that I could see. LOL, Conte is the maestro, always a thorn in the side of the real pseudoscientists here and “homeopathy” alike.

While everyone is looking the other way Conte has been the one who starts blazing a trail into unknown territory, as he did with NMR and beta scintillation studies of “homeopathic remedies” . . if we can keep calling them that, the subject of yet another blog on ionized pharmaceuticals . .

So, in the second month of 2014, let it be known “homeopathy,” according to Hahnemann, is merely putative and wrong, except more likely to be picked up by the search engines, whereas homoeopathy is correct and less likely to be used . .

Unwilling to let this seeming anomaly go by without attacking from all sides, I went to the dictionary to see if I could unravel this confusion. According to Webster, homoio = homeo, and means similar . . whereas homoousios= homoeo, and means the same!

Similia similibus curentur, i.e. “like cures like” has always been the rule for the selection of remedies in “homeopathy,” and now here Hahnemann is suggesting eadem idem sanat . . ? “same cures same?”

This appears to be a contradiction. Hahnemann’s reference to homoeo as analogous led me to check its definition, and here I found the key to the puzzle. The second definition of analogous is the biological one, and this makes an important if not final distinction, clearing up the difference between homeopathy and homoeopathy.

Biologically speaking, analogous, or homoeo-, means “similar in function, but different in origin . . or structure.
I take this to mean then that a horse, a car and a blimp are all analogous in that whereas they have different origins and structures, they are all used for transportation and therefore similar in function.
The Indians in the Pacific Northwest, for example, saw the wolf and the killer whale as the same spirit, or essence, in that as pack predators they behaved in the same way, and had similar voices.

It should be reiterated here that both homeopathy and homoeopathy are applicative strategies and do not specifically refer to highly diluted, solid, liquid, gaseous or ionized medical materials per se, but rather how they are used in the treatment of disease.

What is going on here is that the suffering, i.e. the symptoms, are being confused with the curative agent . .
Now granted, at least in my case, it can be confusing regarding the difference between same, analogue and similar, which one might ascribe to being due to the translation from French to English and the nuance between “similar” and “analogue.”
But I think we can dismiss that as being irrelevant.
I used to assume that the difference between homeo- and homoeo was merely typographical, that both words were different spellings of the same meaning. Until Conte sent me the quote from Hahnemann, I did not know that they are two separate words, and actually two different religions.
The Christian homiosians (homeogogues) believed God and Christ to be of similar substance , . . whereas the homoousians (homoeogogues) believed God to be one and the same substance, or essence.

Hahnemann is an authority who is not easily contradicted. He was a professional translator of scientific and medical texts, spoke a dozen languages, and as a young man worked in one of the oldest medical libraries in Europe and Transasia, which still stands in Sibiu, Romania, so we might expect this kind of neologistic hair splitting from him, but . .

Talk to you later if not sooner,
John

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1. Rolland R. CONTE, Henri BERLIOCCHI, Yves LASNE, Gabriel VERNOT Theory of high dilutions and experimental aspects, Polytechnica 1996, Paris, ISBN 2-84054-046-02.
2. Samuel HAHNEMANN, Etudes de Médecine Homoeopatiques, page 281, Editions Baillière, Paris, France 1855

Wikipedia’s pathological skepticism

Wikipedia, the immensely popular, collaboratively written, online encyclopedia, is under indictment  for bias against energy psychologists, dynamic medical practices and holistic medicine. It is a similar bias Wikipedia has exhibited against ionized  pharmaceuticals for legal use in homoeopathy, characterizing them as “placebos.”

My name is John Benneth. I practice homoeopathy. This is my journal.

On December 16th, 2013 I received from the Association for Comprehensive Energy Psychology (ACEP) a request to sign a petition to Jimmy Wales, the founder of Wikipedia, to “create and enforce new policies that allow for true scientific discourse about holistic approaches to healing” for  the online open source encyclopedia.

The  ACEP petition, which opens in a new tab, says,

“. . much of the information related to holistic approaches to healing is biased, misleading, out-of-date, or just plain wrong. For five years, repeated efforts to correct this misinformation have been blocked and the Wikipedia organization has not addressed these issues.  As a result, people who are interested in the benefits of Energy Medicine, Energy Psychology, and specific approaches such as the Emotional Freedom Techniques, Thought Field Therapy and the Tapas Acupressure Technique, turn to your pages, trust what they read, and do not pursue getting help from these approaches which research has, in fact, proven to be of great benefit to many. This has serious implications, as people continue to suffer with physical and emotional problems that might well be alleviated by these approaches.”

The problem the ACEP is having and will have is that it’s not enough to simply voice discontent with summary judgments. To prove pathological skeptics wrong you have to actually read the articles they cite as proof, show them how they misquoted and deliberately misinterpreted them, and then prove your own assertions right with links to published, replicated scientific experiments, studies, tests and trials . . and then this will only get them to change their links from the citations, that failed to substantiate their conclusions, to even more credible ones that will still fail to substantiate their conclusions.

About a year ago I made an entry in my journal on a similar gripe about their article on homeopathy as the ACEP’s on holistic medicine entitled

“Wikiliars: Wikipedia and the Case Against Homeopathy.”

In this article I went after Wikipedia’s reliance on a Systematic Review of Systematic Reviews of Homeopathy to shore up their assertion that materials used in homoeopathy are placebos. In Wikiliars I revealed that the author of the footnoted “systematic review” had stated  that the conclusions of the Linde meta analysis, a “technically superb meta analysis expressed the notion that homeopathic medicines are more than mere placebos.”

For the present I signed the petition, as I hope you’ll do as well, although I don’t think it’s going to happen . . it being a Wikichange in the Wikiweather.   I think what’s going on is that the pharmaceutical industry has got a gun to Wales’ head. And I don’t think its just because of  money. I think the only way the pharmaceutical industry can get away with their current drug induced murder rate is to keep shoring up this belief that they have the only answer to epidemic, affliction, malady, malaise and deadly disease.

So when Wales even coughs up a little phlelgm he hears the ratcheting clicks of the hammer on a Smith and Wesson .38 being pulled back, and feels its cold muzzle getting shoved in a little deeper inside his ear.

Here’s what I tried writing on the ACEP petition before it coughed it back up for being too long.

“Wikipedia’s entry on ‘Homeopathy’ is provably wrong in declaring that an article by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) claims “Homeopathic remedies are found to be no more than a placebo,” The NIH article makes no such claim. The word “placebo” does not appear anywhere in its text.

“No major meta analysis of clinical trials or review of the literature has concluded homeopathic medicine to be a placebo. Yet Wikipedia characterizes the literature to conclude just the opposite!

“Here is a list of the major reviews and meta analyses of homeopathy with a brief summary of their conclusions and a link to the study if you can‘t believe it: (So as to keep outbound links to a minimum, copy the URL into a new address line and add a dot after tinyurl)

FISHER: high quality repeated experiments yield positive results tinyurl com/7666q5g
JOHNSON 2007: metas find homeopathy significantly better than placebo tinyurl com/7htoejq
SHANG 2005> Ludtke Rutten: find significant effect beyond placebo tinyurl com/ludtkerutten
LINDE 1997: results not compatible with placebo hypothesis tinyurl com/84xt56k
CUCHERAT 2000 homeopathy more effective than placebo tinyurl com/cucherat
KLEIJNEN 1991 evidence of clinical trials is positive tinyurl com/kleijnen

“The placebo claim is indefinite, leading the reader to infer that the materials used as medicine in homoeopathic practice are inert. Numerous biochemical tests, some conducted under the highest standards of scientific research, show that these materials have in vitro action.      tinyurl com/7n9sedq

“Physical tests reveal that these materials are radio-pharmaceuticals with radiant indices. tinyurl com/Montagnier

“These materials are demonstrably medical isotopes, i.e. mildly radioactive.

“Suggesting that they are inert leads to their misuse.
“The statement following Wikipedia’s unproven placebo hypothesis is merely defamatory. It says that “homeopathy is widely considered a pseudoscience.” This reveals that Wikipedia in itself is practicing pseudoscience by its own definition. Wikipedia defines pseudoscience as a field, practice, or body of knowledge that when presented with the norms of scientific research demonstrably fails to meet them. There is no body of literature that upholds the placebo hypothesis for homeopathy. There is not even any known protocol for adequately testing the placebo hypothesis for homeopathy. The effect is universal. If it infects homeopathic tests, it also infects allopathic tests. The primary issue, the determining question, is whether or not the materials used as medicine in the practice are active or inert.
“I have repeatedly asked those who claim homeopathics are placebos to see the literature that supports the hypothesis: Not one has been forthcoming. Nor will there be. It doesn’t exist!

“The hoax, the sham, the fraud is he one perpetrated by Wikipedia on curative medicine.

“Support for the assertion that ionized pharmaceuticals, the materials used in homoeopathic medicine, are not inert, can be found in the reports of their biological and biochemical action, the indices for which have been repeatedly observed and published. Between 1982 and 2008 there have been over 24 published replications of the basophil degranulation (BD) test alone. The BD test was made famous by Jacques Benveniste when the results were published in Nature magazine and attacked by sleight of hand ‘magicians’ and “skeptics” seeking to sabotage the test and prevent further experimentation.

“However, there have been numerous biochemical tests for ionized pharmaceuticals other than the BD spanning 75 years, tests on non cellular systems, cultured cells and blood cells, successfully showing the action of these materials. (see the Witt review ibid) There have also been numerous tests on plants and animals that show the materials in question are not inert.

“So by the methodology of science and its literature, the assertion by Wikipedia that homeopathic medicine is the use of placebos has been repeatedly falsified. Anyone can see for themselves that these are not ‘placebos.’ They are FDA regulated drugs that conform to the standards of science.

“What they don’t conform to are the standards of commercialized patent medicine, the third leading cause of death in the US.

“Its time for Wikipedia to rid itself of pathological skepticism before anymore damage is done. Homeopathic medicines are US government defined and regulated drugs. To repeatedly infer or assert that these materials are inert and that the practice of their administration is a sham, an obstruction of interstate commerce and it should cease and desist immediately.

“Conclusion: The actual literature on the subject of homeopathy supports that the assertion that Wikipedia is misleading the public about holistic medicine. The conflicts of interest should be stated.”

So there’s my contribution to the cause, although I got to say, I’m beginning to wonder what all the fuss is about. Homoeopathy has historically appealed to the upper classes, who tend to be more educated, just the opposite of what Michael Shermer, Jame Randi and the people who brought you Thalidomide and the H-bomb want you to believe,so maybe I’m just wasting my time fighting Darwinism, let the process of natural selection run its course.

The horrors stories of the use of patented medicine vs. tales of the seemingly miraculous cures of homoeopathy go on and on.

The challenge to Ernst, Wales and others . . anyone else . . is to produce by the standards and criteria they demand of homoeopathy . . scientific proof . . just one published study, test or trial that proves the placebo hypothesis for homoeopathy.

For every published paper they can produce that proves homoeopathy is the sole use of placbeos, I’ll produce a dozen that show it is not.