By Christine Maggiore
Questions and comments challenging challenges to the HIV/AIDS hypothesis are thoughtfully addressed by Christine Maggiore of HEAL, LA's leading purveyor of "dangerous information". Send yours to HEAL Q & A, 11684 Ventura Boulevard, Studio City, CA 91604, fax to 818/780-7093 or e-mail through HEAL's web site www.heal-la.org .
Dear Christine, Are there any reliable tests that can diagnose HIV and/or AIDS? Confused College Student
Dear Confused, No. ELISA and Western Blot tests detect only the presence of antibody proteins that are assumed to belong to HIV. These tests don't look for, and cannot detect active HIV virus only active virus is capable of causing disease. Antibodies don't cause disease, and having them in your blood doesn't indicate a current infection or predict future illness; antibodies protect us from disease and indicate a normal, healthy immune response.
In addition to testing for what can't cause illness, there are about 70 things other than HIV antibodies that can elicit positive HIV test results: a cold, the flu, herpes, hepatitis, vaccinations (including those for flu and hepatitis), candida, foreign sperm, drug use, being or having ever been pregnant, normal cellular proteins, and more. Also, there is no standard for what constitutes a positive test. For example, the director of HEAL Toronto tests positive by Canadian standards but can "cure" himself by moving to France or Africa where his test is considered negative.
Viral load tests, which many believe can detect and measure virus, are unable to perform either of those tasks. These tests can only find bits of genetic material (RNA or DNA); they can't diagnose a viral infection, measure levels of active virus, and are not even approved by the FDA for diagnostic use. Having a "low viral load" has not been shown to correlate with good health just as a "high viral load" does not indicate or predict disease, which is why some scientists have called the whole concept "a viral load of crap"!
Dear Christine, I'm really curious about AIDS in Africa. I've seen reports about thousands of people dying of AIDS because of lack information about protection and lack of funding for drug treatment. What's going on? Kelly DaSilva
Dear Kelly, Millions of Africans have for years suffered from chronic diarrhea, severe weight loss, fever and persistent coughs symptoms that have always been associated with rampant poverty, malnutrition, malaria, parasitic infection and TB. In 1985, these very symptoms became the official definition for AIDS in Africa. What's going on is the reclassification of conditions common to people in the third world as AIDS, and the results of poverty, civil war, drought and endemic disease being blamed on sex.
HIV tests are not required for an AIDS diagnosis in Africa and much of the third world. The symptoms mentioned above are the only criteria necessary for a person to have AIDS. In fact, most African AIDS patients as many as 70% are found to be negative when tested for HIV. Also, most reports on AIDS in these regions are based on estimates rather than actual cases or actual deaths, and often what is being counted is unclear as many of these estimates are for "HIV/AIDS."
The real tragedy is that the cures for Africa's real problems (food, clean water and access to basic medical care) receive little funding or attention due to the focus on AIDS. Most all resources designated for Africa and other impoverished regions of the world are being poured into safe sex education programs. This new policy might be summarized as "Let them eat condoms!"
To learn more about the realities of AIDS on the African continent, please check out "Rethinking AIDS in Africa" found in the Sept/Oct issue of "Reappraising AIDS" at http://www.wwnet.-com/~philpott/Reappraising AIDS.
Dear Christine, Can you provide some insight on this new Hepatitis C virus everyone is talking about? I took the test and it came back antibody positive, but I was told not to worry because only 5% of positives will go on to get the disease. Did I miss something here? Everyone's making it seem as if Hep C is going to be bigger than AIDS. Sounds like another fake epidemic to me, what do you think? Concerned in North Hollywood
Dear North, I think you're right. Hep C is the new name for what used to be called "non-A non-B Hepatitis" which has always confined itself to distinct risk groups (people who engage in activities known to damage the liver). The Hep C "virus" is actually a piece of genetic material that is barely detectable even in those with severely deteriorated livers. A Hep C virus has never been found intact. Studies show that the overwhelming majority of people who test Hep C positive do not go on to develop liver disease despite a "latency period" that extends into decades.
The scenario is very similar to HIV: worldwide, only 5% of those who test HIV positive develop AIDS; actual HIV virus is rarely found in AIDS patients and when it is, not enough is there to cause disease; over 95% of US AIDS cases are confined to distinct risk groups (people engaging in activities known to suppress the immune system). For more information on the Hep C phenomenon, please see pages 83-86 of "Inventing the AIDS Virus" by Dr. Peter Duesberg.
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