Curved Balls

If antibiotics are a false flag, what about immunisation?

For one reason or another, I’m spending a lot of time talking to microbiologists and virologists at the moment. It’s a very hard job to get them to take off the ‘ologist at the office’ hat in favour of other headgear called, for the sake of argument, ‘species philosophy’. But when they do, these are very seriously interesting people.

“The thing is,” one of them said to me recently, “We’ve lost the battle against bugs. The media don’t want to talk about it, and nobody in either government or the nhs will admit it. But we have lost: micro-organisms and airborne viruses mutate so quickly today, we can’t keep up. What’s worse, most people in the West have stuffed so many antibiotics down themselves, they have nowhere near enough natural resistance in the first place”.

“People get no chance to build up proper resistance these days,” another senior practitioner agreed. “They eat the wrong stuff, and they routinely use powerful hygiene cleaners everywhere. The authorities are creating the perfect conditions in which a new, aggressive virus could wreak havoc. Far too many people see that as unwarranted alarmism, but they’re wrong.”

I admit to being fascinated by all this, because it smacks to me once again of inflexible tramline thinking. Five years ago I sat next to a young geneticist at supper.

“You know when natural selection began being more aggressive?” he asked me. I confessed to ignorance on the subject.

“The third decade of the nineteenth century,” he continued, “When anaesthetic was discovered. That changed the invasive surgery survival rate from 3 in 20 to 5 out of 10 almost immediately. From that moment on, natural selection has been trying to cope with having lots of folks alive who, according to its own rules, should’ve died.”

His thesis was that evolution’s psycho hitman Natural Selection was thus having to work harder – and find new ways to kill us genetically – as a natural form of population control. (Our sensitivity to hypertension via excess salt, I am told, is a development that has increased dramatically over the last century).

But micro-organisms (bacteria) and viruses that rapidly mutate are another matter entirely. The more we look for antibiotics to kill the bacteria, the more their mutation rates increase….and the more our defences are weakened.

So it struck me, after having had these conversations, that immunising us might be better than trying to kill them: the nasties are left alone, and we get permanent resistance. They don’t mutate, and we stop worrying.

There are tens of thousands of microscopic nasties. And thirty-six diseases against which you can be vaccinated. I am baffled as to why this is. Although massively hyped to benefit the pharmcos, Avian and then Swine flu did at least raise the profile of immunisation. As usual, this was followed immediately by alarmists launching campaigns to raise awareness of the ‘dangers’ of immunisation. None of these managed to face one simple fact: if two in a thousand succumb to side-effects, 998 will be saved from the disease.

Every year, more is learned about immune systems, how they work, and how they can help ‘immunise’ against lots of transient bugs. This too I’ve had to learn about quite quickly, and there is no doubt that, if people persevere, the boost to one’s natural resistance can be remarkable. But if you contract H1N1 and your genes aren’t set up to deal with it, you will get ill – unless you’ve had ‘the jab’.

Yet you can only get a jab against thirty-six things easily. OK, so when a new virus or microbiological disease appears, you can’t immunise until a serum has been developed. But why aren’t thousands of antidotes cultured and stored for those that want them before, instead of taking antibiotics afterwards?

I am hugely ignorant on this subject, and I do not doubt there is a simple reason(s) why not. So if you know, please do comment. (No trolls, thanks all the same: I’d like to learn something specific, not that you’re smarter than me and I’m so dumb etc etc etc).

This subject sits under the Curved Balls heading because, despite the existence of some interesting fiction and movies on the subject of global pandemics, most people still believe it’s all bollocks and some genius out there will always find a cure. That’s based on the highly suspect thesis that it hasn’t happened recently, so it can’t. The past is no guide to the future.

79 thoughts on “Curved Balls

  1. I have had rheumatoid arthritis since childhood and also have antibodies to borrelia burgdorferi (a tick borne disease) showing active disease. I am able to induce complete remission of my rheumatoid arthritis symptoms by taking antibiotics, but eventually, I beame sensitised to the antibiotics themselves unfortunately. So now I am trying to get my body to ignore the bacteria, by desensitisation via daily vaccines. I have found that I am sensitised to both aerobic and anaerobic bacteria. (My body has quite a severe allergic reaction to them when they are injected under my skin for testing.) I am improving slowly with the vaccines and a simpler diet, called a Paleolithic diet, consisting of unprocessed foods. I also find that supplementing B vitamins, vitamin D and zinc, magnesium, boron, calcium and potassium also helps a great deal. It is like you say, if you can’t beat the bugs, you have to join them, I.e. teach your body to tolerate them. There is more than one way to skin a cat… And I’ve tried most of them ;)

    • No, the problem is that MOST Medical and life science research is garbage, and more so when processed through the speculation engine of the MSM. Most studies, from out side the Camp of Belieivers in Medical, Life and Climate Science think that 87 to 95 % of the published research is simply garbage, especially in Pharma, because of badly designed experiments and poorly analyzed research.

      In all science you need to publish the RAW results, the detail of the analysis and the Source Code of any Computer model used; otherwise your results can not be independently checked which is why the withholding of RAW, rather than homogenized data, in Climate Science, is SO reprehensible. Bias and flawed analysis, especially if factor analysis abound.

      This is why the use-of-antibiotics-is bad meme got started, it is far more likely that too late, after a 5 day tissue culture, and too little, prescribe by body body weight not NICE guideline are the reason that antibiotics appear less effective, especially combined with poor hygene in hospitals and the “no disinfect before stick NICE policy” again based on a discredited paper, are part of the problem

      We need to get PostModernism out of science and Popper back in.

      Greuss, omb

  2. There is a need to separate the difference between infectious ‘nasties’. Viruses work in a different way to bacteria and cause differences in symptoms that have specific dangers for us. For example, while bacterial infections tend to be localised, a flu or flu-like virus will cause respiratory symptoms as well as sore muscles and bones and cardiac enlargement. Cardiac enlargement, (temporary), is not something you would feel, but if it was severe enough and then you tried shovelling lots of snow off your garden path, (requiring lots of blood to make the heart muscle work hard), you could end up having a heart attack – your heart lives inside a non stretchy sack and if it’s too big to contract rhymically inside a diminished space, cardiac arrest follows.
    Flu viruses are particularly dangerous as they latch on to cells much further down into our respiratory system than cold viruses. The damage to tissue deep down causes inflammation, which in turn leads to fluid accumulating in the area, making our lungs wetter and more prone to bacterial infection as a secondary infection process more likely. Also. A large immune response to a viral infection in the lungs also cause fluid shift to that area, making the lungs wetter still – further risk of infection, (pneumonia), making oxygen exchange increasing poor leading to other organ failure and death

    You see how an interplay of factors is involved in the above.

    Bacteria have their own hazards. Bacteria in a surface wound can be managesd really well using moist wound healing techniques and the application of silver impregnated dressings or creams such as flammazine. Yet, in the US, hundreds of people die each week from the complication of infected pressure sores. The Superman actor who was paralysed died from the colplications of a pressure sore. In such cases, it tends to be the management of the infection which is poor, possible also coupled with other underlying health issues, including the inability to maintain diet and to maintain a health circulation – poor appetite due to being I’ll, lack of movement due to fatigue etc.

    • Actually silver dressings are useless.
      From Cochrane (the puuppies privates of evidence based medicine;

      People with chronic wounds such as foot ulcers and leg ulcers and acute wounds such as surgical wounds often find their wound becomes infected. Healing the wound can be delayed by the amount of bacteria on the wound surface. Wound care involves frequent dressing changes. Silver is an antimicrobial and dressings which contain silver have been developed. The authors of this Cochrane review wanted to find evidence on whether silver based dressings reduced infection and encouraged wound healing.

      Three studies looking at people with chronic wounds were included in the review and found that silver-containing foam dressings did not result in faster wound healing after up to four weeks of follow-up. One study did find that the overall size of the ulcer reduced more quickly when dressed with a silver-containing foam.

      There is no enough evidence to recommend the use of silver-containing dressings or topical agents for treating infected or contaminated chronic wounds.

      • Yeah you keep telling yourself that. You keep whistling past the graveyard. This is not the most efficient way to use silver. Oral colloidal works. I speak from first hand experience

  3. The idea that the immune system is the secret to cancer treatment seems to be gaining ground in recent years.
    The theory says that mutations generate cancer cells all the time throughout life. But a young, strong immune system normally destroys them as soon as they appear.
    The cancer disease appears in old age as the immune sysem wears out and gradually lets more and more cancer cells escape.
    Cancer appears in young people when the immune system is overwhelmed by many cancer cells or is damaged and fails. e.g. radiation, asbestos, etc.

    • There is natural radiation all around you – e.g. Radon. From the time you are born you gradually absorb ever increasing amounts of natural radiation. Eventually you will end up with such a high dose this effects the immune system which in turn loses its ability to fight cancer cells.
      This is why living to above 150 years is impossible. (eventually you accumulate a fatal amount of radiation).
      Long life is all in the genes. It’s been proved many times. Your genetic disposition determines your immune system.
      Of course you can abuse your own genes by poor lifestyle choices.
      Of course good genes have a say in natural selection

      • Or maybe this is going to the evolution of man….once we break the 150 years barrier we evolve into a ‘pure energy being’ and thus open up the ability for space travel……………..
        Sorry this smacks of a theory which does not hold….Radon (yes I know it exists but so does the sun) being the ultimate barrier to longevity due to critical mass radiation exposure does not go beyond the b’lucks stage of analysis IMHO.
        What would you make of the recent studies showing that cancer death rates around Chernobyle are lower (and falling) than in ‘non irradiated’ areas around it ? (Wish I could find the link…but this could have been a fantasy study as well anyway !)

      • @Morningstar
        I only mentioned radiation as one of many possible causes of failure of the immune system, causing cancer in young people.
        The difficulties of assessing cancer deaths from Chernobyl are political agendas. Greenpeace types want the death toll to be as high as possible so that atomic power stations will be banned. The nuclear industry want the death toll to be as low as possible so they can build wherever they want to.
        And it is difficult to measure as so many people will die from cancer anyway and follow-up to evacuees is difficult. The immediate deaths from workers and thyroid cancers in children (over 4000) were recorded.
        I cannot find anyone claiming that the Chernobyl radiation *reduced* cancer cases. Even the nuclear industry only claims that there was a negligible percentage increase (though that means thousands of actual cases in numerical terms).

      • I’m pretty sure the destructive power of radiation on DNA is well understood. Cells can repair DNA and immune system can cope with some of the unrepaired freaky mess but only to a point. I would suggest that before listening to any moron on here that wants to tell you radiation is not harmful that you ask them to post a YouTube of themself sat in nuke reactor cooling water for half hour followed by a time lapse of their coming misery

  4. We can’t immunise in advance for the very reason you mentioned, I.e. the bugs evolve too quickly. Vaccinations have to be specific to the disease in question to provoke the immune response required. This works well for diseases which are slow to evolve like smallpox but is a problem for flu, which evolves quickly and frequently inside other species (H1N1 incubates inside pigs and ducks, for example). The flu vaccine can only immunise against types of flu we already have knowledge of; any slight mutation renders the vaccine useless. This makes the risk involved in taking it (with the associated carriers such as mercury) outweigh any benefit. If you would like to read more, I can recommend ‘Killer Germs’ by Zimmerman. I am a layman, and that is where I learned the above.

    • Although viruses and nasty bugs are very nasty, it is entirely possible that exposure to them confers unknown benefits over and above simple immunity.

      I have read that incidents of childhood leukemia are lower in children that have suffered lots of infections. It certainly seems to be the case that the immune system needs to be kept occupied or it has a tendency to turn on the body.

      It might be hard to see what benefits cold and flu viruses confer besides population control but that doesn’t mean there are none. I believe a certain amount of immunity is passed through the generations, this may be due to a genetic disposition but the origin of any such immunity must have originated with an ancestor who caught and survived the illness in the first place. I think it would be dangerous to rely entirely on science to protect us from these things, rather than maintain the defence mechanisms built up over millennia.

      What if the killer cells that fight off nascent cancers in all of us need to be primed and increased in numbers by our exposure to everyday pathogens? What about all the other auto immune diseases that result from the body turning on itself. Allergies are the result of an over reacting immune. response. An underemployed immune system might find other worse things to occupy itself with fighting.

  5. 1) The best defence against bacteria is Colloidal Silver; this will clear up all infected wounds and is especially effective on infected bed-sores. At the moment, virtually no bacteria are immune to CS. The best defence against virii is Vitamin D3 at 10000 i.u. (zinc and selenium help also).
    2) For rheumatoid arthritis, you may find Colloidal Gold very effective.
    3) Just for fun (a bit serious, too) go to an online website selling life insurance, and put in your details. Give your job as “Office or Clerical Worker”. Note the premium. Now change the job to “Research Microbiologist”, and see the change in the premium. Now search online for “Dead microbiologists” to see why there is a difference.

      • And you are repeating trolled stuff from the Internet without any complementary knowledge. No-one goes blue from correctly-made CS. These idiots have ingested ionic silver, which is completely different, and the “Quackwatch” website consists mainly of scare stories designed to try to make you pay far more for antibiotics. HAVEN’T YOU READ the original article? The whole point of this article is that antibiotics are failing. Go to one of the more neutral websites, where you might learn something.

      • @David. Silver also works against virii and fungal infections. It also speeds up healing greatly. Anyone who has a diabetic-exacerbated leg ulcer which is not healing, will immediately benefit from this. Anecdotal evidence indicates that Asthma is also greatly improved by consuming it.

      • @BillK. Rosemary Jacobs took silver nitrate, not colloidal silver. She either doesn’t know what she is talking about, or she is deliberately trying to suppress this knowledge. And you are quoting stuff from marketing sites from 1995? How about getting up to date, just a little bit?

        Please argue with me on the basis of sensible comments, not the utter biased drivel from websites with an agenda. This Blog is a source of serious alternative information which is being suppressed by the MSM.

  6. How are people supposed to trust a health authority that has been caught murdering it’s “useless eaters” by systematically sedating and dehydrating them to death, and preventing relatives from even giving them a drink of water?
    South Staffordshire NHS sent out a circular round the schools to threaten parents that if they did not take their child to have the swine flu jab they could be taken to court and their children forced to have the jab. South Staffordshire NHS didn’r send a circular to apologise to the parents when it was found that some children had become ill and even died of the swine flu jab!
    If South Staffordshire NHS really wants to keep the people in it’s area healthy one thing they could do is cend round a circular to all food manufacturers and local vendors to the effect that if they continue to put Aspartame in food that they will take them to court for deliberatly attempting to poison millions of people. But I expect I will see pigs flying past my window before South Staffordshire or any other health authority has the balls to take on such giants as Nestles and Coca Cola.

  7. A very interesting essay. I would like to add an observation.

    Look at the lions on the Serengetti chasing the Gnus and Wildebeesties – and you see “natural selection” in action. There are, however, two versions that are intellectually credible here: the strongest win, or the weakest lose.

    I want to further this by explaining a method of combatting greenfly on broad beans, a common problem.

    Take some nettles and steep them in water for 24 hrs. The resulting liquid can be diluted 1:5 and applied to the plants. This stimulates them and the bugs shove off.

    My point is, strengthening the plant makes the plant less attractive to bugs. No case proved, but in practice it works nicely. Not all the time for sure, but then you can’t expect pesticides to work all the time either.

    So why use pesticides? They protect the plant from bugs. They do not make the plant stronger in order to resist the bug from within its own resources. Understand this and hold one key to heaven. Understand this and you will understand why farmers need ever more inputs to counter ever more nasties.

    All the time the plant is getting weaker and weaker and were it not for all the inputs, the plant would die in the sterile soil it finds itself in. The problem is that a strong plant (seed) die in such barren soil. I know this and have seen repeated crop failures on the poor soil that I was left when I came to my new home. It made me realize just how difficult it is to revivify barren soils. Thankfully I have a supermarket down the road. For now.

    The problem with disease is that it attacks the weaker, and certainly the weaker elements of a living being. The caterpillars always sit on the smallest cabbage, the blight begins on the weakest leaf of the potato plant. Observe this carefully, and you will see that this is the case.

      • Matt

        I haven’t read it, and much of what I wrote above is from personal experience. My thesis goes beyond the problems of modern industrial agriculture, and to the root of the flawed philosophy that underpins it. Sort that little mess out, and you have sustainable agriculture.

        Rudolf Steiner’s almost impenetrable “Agriculture Course” (Koberwitz, 1924) goes a long way to providing an effective alternative to modern industrial methods whilst providing nearly the same output. The work of Maria Thun in modern times went a long way to establishing this. If you see the eco-trademark “Demeter” then it is certified under Steiner’s recommendations. It is certainly the best farm produced food you can buy.

      • Alex,
        the problem of technologies such as gene modification is that they share the philosophy of a plant needing protection from bugs.

        Put this on its head and you have plants that are strong enough to resist bugs, without any need for making technological incursions into the plant. If you respect the plant, it will be the stronger thereby. Most technologies do not respect the plant or its nature – or for that matter its needs.

        The problems associated with gene modification are double: the costs involved are enormous, and therefore some defence of this is required. The seeds Monsanto make are sterile – which means you always need to buy new for the next season. The second problem is that associated plants can become crossed. The case of rape seed and weed turnips is a case in point: the former were sprayed to eradicate the latter. Now the latter are also spray-immune.

        Start by strengthening the plant and the soil it grows in and the amount of damage done to your plants by disease and pests will be substantially less. It is also a lot cheaper than buying in expensive seeds – and you get to keep the best of your own too!

      • Gemma I’m pretty sure modifying the genetics of plants is a good way to strengthen them and make them more resistant. Farmers have been modifying them for millenia. I agree that the strategies used by monsanto are dubious but that’s what corps do. The science is valid – it allows far more tailoring of genetics than can be achieved with cross pollination etc. there’s nothing sacred about nature, randomness constantly occurrs – if it works it survives, if it doesn’t it dies. Easy really.

      • Alex

        I am not so sanguine about GM. Interfering in the way the modern farming industry does (and in particular the big M) is not natural and has no interest in the plant’s needs whatsoever. Such breeding/modification is well outside the acceptable as far as I am concerned. I happen also to disagree with much of the science too, but that is for another day.

        As a note: a modern wheat variety from 2011 will no longer grow. Even if it does, the yields will be significantly reduced. Modern varieties need constant revision, unlike the days of Maris Wigeon (which is not that long ago!).

    • Farmers are not using “more and more”. Not only has total volume gone down (an astounding fact considering the greater amounts produced) but volume/acre and strength has been radically reduced. Farmers routinely complain that both fertilizers and pesticides are much weaker than in the past.

      What HAS dramatically increased is the use of herbicides – grass and weed killers. As for crop failures due to poor dirt, I see little evidence of it here in the American South. We constantly work at improving the soil through methods old and new – clover, compost, fallow lands, rotation, rotting. raised beds, etc. I have not seen (nor heard) of a single failure due to poor soil.

      Organics is all the rage today and most vegetables I don’t grow I get at the Amish farm – best and safest produce in the world bar none.

      • SMB

        Glad to hear the Organic movement is doing well down yonder. Well done, and especially to those farmers dealing with the soil in ways that the soil needs dealing in – that is to say, with a deal of respect.

        My observations about poor dirt and all, was based on what I see going on around me in Europe. There is too much emphasis on yield, achieved by using crops that have been bred to accommodate large pesticide sprays etc.

  8. None of these managed to face one simple fact: if two in a thousand succumb to side-effects, 998 will be saved from the disease.

    Sorry to say this sentence has left me bemused. 1000 immunised, 2 die due to side affects, both verifiable and measurable. 998 saved? How on earth can you make such a claim?

    • Beat me to it, Bemused.

      However, it would be correct to say that the 998 have been saved from the RISK of the disease, rather than the disease itself. There is no proof that those 998 would have caught it.

      • There is also little proof that the immunisation would actually protect any of the 998 should they contract the disease. The whooping cough outbreaks in USA are occurring primarily in the vaccinated population.

    • The 2/998 mathematics is a good example of a logical fallacy. A cracker.

      So is the idea “The more we look for antibiotics to kill the bacteria, the more their mutation rates increase”. It is not that the rate of mutation ‘increases’ it is that the mutation’s survive ability allows them to propagate and dominate the population where the old strain dies.

      Further I am left wondering what these ‘alarmists’ are concerned about, what are the ‘dangers’ of immunisation they are campaigning to raise awareness of. Why has the world ‘dangers’ been hyphenated – as though we will all just accept the dangers these alarmists wish to build awareness of is just to be accepted as being a load of stupid rubbish. A false conclusion for the uncritical to be spooning-up again.

      I think I’ll keep away from the medical expertise of Dr Slog – but he can jab himself as much as he likes. I sure those cocktails of infections, metals, preservatives and you do not know what else will only make him all the better.

      Maybe the immunised population will eventually get nipped by a newly mutated bug and die-out themselves whilst those with strong functioning untainted natural immune system will survive.

      • I too replied to that although my comment is still “awaiting moderation”. As was originally said – it is “a cracker” – which is why I recommended the book by Kahneman as it explains why we (generally speaking) have such difficulty with statistics.

      • Can I just ask which part of not claiming to be an expert, not having advanced knowledge of the subject, wanting comments to be based on real life and not be ‘Im so clever and your not’……. did you not get ?

        The ‘logic’ JW has set out in his piece to my thinking was a question and not an answer. Hoping to find an answer which does not constitute bollux and also is not attack dog adventurism would have made quite an enjoyable comments section, full of reason and knowledge.
        Instead it has turned into a discussion cum advertisement on the merits of homeopathic remedies, crop rotational advisors and in general a mis comprehension of what the artlicle was about.

        Or maybe I am wrong…it happens………..over to you JW.

        I thought is was a good piece to inspire debate and bring forthe enlightenment for those of us who do not know everything about everything.

      • Speaking for myself Morningstar, my post had nothing to do with putting JW down or proving that I am cleverer.

        Our host stated the numbers as a “fact”, therefore as something he has faith in. I hope my brief posting encourages our host to revisit his beliefs, research the field of statistics and maybe even the illiterate bastard child epidemiology, if he really wants to scare. Epidemiologists regularly get the statistics wrong, all too often due to conflict of interest.

        Statistics has been abused and perverted by politicians, scientists, doctors, economists and just about anybody with an agenda to bamboozle the general public for decades, the only way to separate the fact from the fiction is to have an understanding of statistics and be able to recognise when they are being manipulated.

        It is sad and worrying when someone as intelligent as our host claims fiction as fact but no insult was intended.

      • H2 eu brainwashing conspiracy they never went to the moon bollocks.
        This is precisely the kind of wise-assed answer I tried to discourage in what I thought was English.
        But I obviously went wrong somewhere.
        Do continue being annoying, but preferably not here.

      • “John Ward
        July 22, 2012 at 7:01 pm

        H2 eu brainwashing conspiracy they never went to the moon bollocks.
        This is precisely the kind of wise-assed answer I tried to discourage in what I thought was English.
        But I obviously went wrong somewhere.
        Do continue being annoying, but preferably not here.”
        *********************
        What it looks like Mr John Ward (AKA The Slog) apparently wants here is comment that flatters his ‘thinking’ only. Yet the question he poses is slanted with bias. I consider the first step to providing a good answer is to interrogate the question; if the question is faulty the answer can be no better.

        Regardless. Whilst I am on the track of not flattering the Slog’s ego I would like to call fowl to another, this time rather jaded, corker. This is the trite use of a rhetorical fallacy in addressing me as “they never went to the moon”. The use of this weak rhetorical device is so to attempt to cant my opinions with those he considers most ridiculous. He could have chosen to use the old ‘Elvis lives’ device or the more unusual ‘dumb Lizards run the advertising industry’ (which I happen to believe to be true though they get eased out’ the back-door most often).

        Anyway he has asked me to F***-off – I guess so his blog looks more like real people think his ramblings make an alternative to and more sense than the MSM does. And that is fair enough. Every dog should have its day.

  9. Micro-organisms like all life mutate, the rate of which depends on the environmental conditions and an intrinsic factor for that organism.

    There is a popular misconception that, because infective organisms are under attack by us, they respond by mutating to attack us better. They are not sentient and the who evolutionary point of mutation is that it gives the organism / life form the ability to cope with environmental changes and thus can continue to live. No more, no less. They rae not ganging up on us and fighting back.

    As bugs says, massive immunisation and innoculation just after birth would only work for specific species of the organisms concerned, which in vivo would already be mutated enough within a period of time not to affected by the induced resistence in the human population.

    I agree that all these sprays and wipes are probably decreasing our natural resistence and are usually ineffective anyway. Bacteria reproduce exponentially but die linearily. So if you have 1 billion bacteria and kill 99.9% you will still have a million of the little buggers left. The generation time of bacteria varies according to the species and the conditions but can be as low as 15 minutes so that million bacteria cells could become, theoretically, in about 3 hours. This is not like on a “clean” surface but it is a sobering example.

    Best use soap and hot water, bleach and vinegar or even lemon juice to clean kitchen surfaces and the WC.

    Of great concern is the possibility that resistence to antibiotics can jump bacterial species. Remember that bacteria in hospitals come in with staff, patients and visitors, daily.

    Not to finish on a bummer the use of good bacteria is not fully understood. About 12% of us have IBS and other problems of the bowel for which the injestion of some bacterial species can have a palliative effect. There is a growing awareness that the trigger for these gut problems is stress, external and internal. Stress disequilibriates the balance of bacteria in the gut and permits some unhelpful species gain ascendency and produce toxins. The “good” bacteria are licenced for animal feed as animals in intensive rearing are well, stressed and this affects their growth rates.

    It is ironic that more money has gone into testing the affect of these bacteria on animals than on humans but animals have to free choice of what is given to them to eat.

    I was trying to set up a trial in a major gastro-intestinal unit in the UK on people with IBS, which doctors cannot treat. We were blocked by two things. Such treatment can be viewed from two perspectives. Either it is a medication or a food supplement. If a medication it must go through the same level of testing as a though it were a new drug for say cancer. Same protocols, same insurance for the patients, medical staff and hospitals. Same EU bollox as well. If it is as a food supplement, it still needs to be permitted at UK and Bruxelles and would still need the same indemnities in place. Added to that, even if it worked and was God’s gift to humanity the NHS would not buy it, as they are only allowed to buy drugs, not food supplements. Thus bacteria manufacturers have done little or no work with humans and spent much more on animal treatment.

    I would be happy to exchange e-mails with anyone interested. John Ward has my e-mail address from a previous exchange about Mohammed Merha and the Toulouse siege. I will resend it to him.

    • I read a very interesting thing a few years back about a bloke who discovered that some kind of intestinal parasite had the effect of reducing or eliminating the symptoms of some unpleasant disease or other – I think by bringing about some sort of anti-inflammatory response. He was sending the eggs of the parasite to people in the post to infect themselves.He fell foul of the American regulatory system and I think ended up on the wanted list. I wonder whether he was onto something.

    • BTP
      ‘There is a popular misconception that, because infective organisms are under attack by us, they respond by mutating to attack us better.’
      That really is a gross misrepresentation of what I wrote. They don’t mutate to attack us, they ADAPT. A better attack on us is merely the side-effect, not the motive.

  10. “When anaesthetic was discovered. That changed the invasive surgery survival rate from 3 in 20 to 5 out of 10 almost immediately. From that moment on, natural selection has been trying to cope with having lots of folks alive who, according to its own rules, should’ve died”

    On the other hand, what about soldiers who were saved by surgery? These were not the weakest who were being killed off by natural selection, these were the strongest and fittest who were being killed off in battle. Therefore their deaths in battle were contrary to the principles of natural selection by removing the fittest from the population, and so the change from 3 in 20 to 5 in 10 for these men was not opposing natural selection. War kills the strongest and fittest and weakens the gene pool. The German sixth army refused to withdraw from Russia and was wiped out. In WWI in Britain we sent our bravest and fittest off to die, and the officer class suffered such disproportionate deaths that it devastated many of the ruling class families. Nelson went up on deck in full costume of commander to lead from the front but he was an obvious target and was shot and killed, although in his case you could argue that natural selection was weeding out someone who lacked fear and had ‘too much’ courage..

    Another practice that cannot be good for the gene pool is the practice used in Ireland for centuries, of picking the most intelligent son of the family and preventing him from breeding by sending him to the priesthood.

    I do not need to comment on current government policy of paying the underclass to breed.
    .

    • JW the bugs mutate too quickly to have a panoply of antidotes already stored. Plus- if any other reason were required- the main reason is money. It is vastly expensive to produce one ‘antidote’ (to a viral or bacterial infection) and even more so today given the high standards required to ensure any vaccination, for example, is free of contaminants which could themselves be problematical. Some batches of The Salk vaccine against polio for example, which was produced in the States in the early sixties, were contaminated with the SV40 virus because the vaccine (as I understand it) was raised in monkeys/monkey serum which carry that virus. Some of the virus-contaminated vaccine was used in the UK in the first inoculation programmes then operating. There’s a fair chance that some of us who received that polio vaccination then got the vaccine contaminated with live SV40. (But no records of which batch numbers remain to prove it). SV40 virus – although a monkey virus- is now suspect as a co-factor in the cause of certain human cancers.

      Otoh I dare say the money to support germ warfare is endless. And we now have the situation where scientific investigation to understand how killer viruses work (for the betterment of making vaccines) cannot/should not be published in scientific journals because of the risk of its use in germ warfare by those we would rather not give that information to.

    • There is a common misconception about what survival of the “fittest” means. Darwin meant survival of those best adapted to the conditions in which they find themselves, not the same as the strongest. The gene pool includes all manner of traits which allow us to leave descendants and strength and heroism are only a small part of it. I’m thinking of traits like cunning, intelligence and general mental endurance. The basic rule of natural selection is that those best adapted to their environment survive longer to leave more descendants. Ironically the subversion of natural selection is a key characteritic of humanity. We can change our environment to suit ourselves. The problem is that you can’t change all the environment all the time and when you do change it, it can have unintended adverse effects. But cheer up, with 7 billion we can afford to lose a few and its unlikely the bugs will ever wipe us all out entirely. The planet has plenty more tricks up its sleave to achieve that!

      • Aflatoxin
        Thanks – this too is an informed answer to a question. I salute your ability to read plain English.

    • oops sorry billyhippo,
      my reply was a general comment, not to your post. But as it happens I agree with PhilE rather than your dare I say elitist interpretation of ‘strongest and fittest’ let alone any effect of war on it.

      • aflatoxin – My contribution was about whether invasive surgery saved people ‘who according to its own rules, (natural selection) should’ve died’. (including by bacterial infection and pneumonia) .This was the quote I was discussing, therefore in this context we are talking about the physically ‘strongest and the fittest’ and not other traits such as ‘cunning’ that PhilE mentioned.
        In fact Natural selection doesn’t just simply select for this trait or that one, rather it leads to an equilibrium. For example, in the land of the peaceful and honest a gang of violent thieves who arrive to pillage and rape and live off the others have a huge natural selection advantage when they are 1% as they can just wander around the land and help themselves, but if they are 90% their lifestyle is no longer viable as there are not enough victims to live off.
        Host-parasite relationships also reach an equilibrium.
        In our modern wealthy society we distort the natural equilibrium. Those with criminal tendencies never had it so good as we nurture the underclass and pay them to breed.

    • With reference to Nelson, if he was a highly adaptive bug or such, he would have mimicked the cells around him in order to survive an attack, lots of courage but no cigar….

  11. Bacterai and viruses are like chalk and cheese.Bacteria are at least 1000 times bigger than viruses and have their own internal reproductive and energy transport system.Not all but the vast majority,particularly those that attack humans.Viruses,by contrast,have a strand of RNA enclosed in a protein shell,which has complex markers on the shell.The virus hijacks the host’s cells to reproduce and produce energy.The spike in temperature is associated with the response to the immune system has to the markers,which vary from virus to virus and also bacteira.
    The antibiotics have targeted the cell wall of the Bacteria and some DNA synthesising mechanisms specific to bacteria.
    Viruses lie dormant until access to the host body occurs and without triggering an immune response which would kill the virus.It injects the strand of RNA directly into the host’s cell where it entangles itself in the hosts DNA,which it then uses to produce more new viruses.Temeprature spikes occurs when these viruses erupt from each cell,going on to infect more cells.Hopefully the immune system may pick up the markers and attack with deadly force.Unfortunately in cases where the body cannot recognise the markers,the defense system react,if at all,too late and the immune system is overwhelmed until it fights back,such as with a flu.
    This is a fairly simplistic introduction to virus/bacteria and I apologise to those who could do a better job.
    Generally viruses weaken the immune system in older life allowing for the overwhelming infection by Bacteria eg pneumonia which is called the old man’s friend,starts off will a viral infection of the airways and chest weakening the immune system,whereupon the Pneumonia bacteria invade and encrust the pleural sac and lungs,without antibiotics the lungs succumb.Even with antibiotics,patients who have had a stroke or similarly incapacitated,have poor pleural or lung profusion,their immune system is weak and antibiotics are simply overwhelmed by the bacterial disease.Does this help?
    I have avoided as much terminology as possible and again apologise for its simplicity.

    • Excellent piece MdS – thanks for adding knowledge to one who likes to learn. The whole point of this piece notwithstanding my earlier contribution :)

    • @MdS some viruses- like the ‘cold’ virus are DNA viruses (contain DNA not RNA).
      Some of the most effective viruses (in terms of *their* lives, that is) have brilliant mechanisms to avoid detection by the immune system. They are sneaky and successful. Any parallels here I wonder…..

  12. John antibiotics have a general capability at zapping bacteria but don’t touch viruses (viri?!)

    I think viruses are much less vulnerable than bacteria and need more specific antibodies that our immune system can assemble and/or can be kick started by an immunisation. I think this gives the immune sys a template of the virus to learn without the nasty side effect of the real thing

    I will read up and report back cos that may have been shakey. To be honest though if you have to ask then you not bright enough to understand anyway ;-)

  13. ‘False flag ‘ is not the mot juste here: ‘False flag’ (aka Black Flag) operations are covert operations designed to deceive in such a way that the operations appear as though they are being carried out by other entities. The name is derived from the military concept of flying false colors . . [wikipedia]. A notorious example: ‘The Gleiwitz incident in 1939 involved Reinhard Heydrich fabricating evidence of a Polish attack against Germany to mobilize German public opinion for war, to establish casus belli, and to justify the war with Poland.’

    Curiously the phrase has not yet made it into the OED.

  14. I believe that bacteriophages have been in use for some time in Eastern European countries (against bacterial infections, natch) and have been tried with some success over here. Anecdotal evidence only, I’m afraid but perhaps scientific test reports appear somewhere.

    • Yes, according to a Horizon prog a few years ago. But agree little accessible info published. Perhaps someone here could explain why, before I resort to conspiracy theories involving the major pharma

  15. It is amazing how little we know about the role of bacteria and viruses in the body. A major study is now underway to develop understanding, and its initial findings show the depth of our currnet ignorance.

    See
    — NIH Human Microbiome Project defines normal bacterial makeup of the body, June 13, 2012 News Release – National Institutes of Health (NIH)

    http://www.nih.gov/news/health/jun2012/nhgri-13.htm

    RobertD

    • Were you aware that the smallest bacteria, Mycoplasma genitalium, has been reproduced on a computer down to the molecular level? This permits incredible opportunities and opens the door to mapping larger organisms. The range and variety of experimentation possible with such an object (program) makes current methods quaint in comparison.

      The one thing missing from this article was any discussion of technology and its future role. If/when “smart” nanobots become widespread, our ability to detect and fight viruses and bacteria will improve exponentially.

  16. I gather it is fairly well accepted that many if not most of us carry the TB bacillus. But of course most of us dont suffer from the clinical syndrome. Afaik, the reasons for this are poorly understood. Naturopaths etc believe that functional immune systems are responsible for this ‘resistance’. And, as others have said above, factors which stress the immune system (i.e compromise it in some way) enable the viruses or bacteria to get a hold clinically.
    Modern medicine/biological science has saved me from death several times over. For which I am of course thankful. Nevertheless, as long as we continue to regard humans – especially the body- as machines we will continue to treat symptoms rather than cause….and, more importantly, not to view the human being more holistically.

  17. @JW: When you say “immunising us might be better than trying to kill them: the nasties are left alone, and we get permanent resistance.“, your logic is wrong. Immunisations against a variety of infections *are* developed but until a particular mutation appears, the work cannot begin. This is why folks like the ones you’ve been speaking to say that we’re losing the battle…simply put: (a) the time between first appearance of a new bug (or mutation) and a widely available immunisation solution often takes years partly because of the need for testing trials etc and (b) the bugs are getting ever more intelligent. It is a war.

      • Indeed. it may not be the sort of intelligence that one usually thinks of, but it is widely known that mutations of various bugs/viruses are due to adaptability. Thus, when you find a way of killing them, so they mutate into something different in order to survive.

      • It is simply evolution, on a micro scale. You cannot kill 100% of any organism with a drug, like there is no disease that will kill 100% of the people who catch it.

        The ones that are most affected by the treatment will die, while those least affected will carry on reproducing. The genes that carry the protective effect are thus replicated until they are contained within the whole population and the drug is no longer effective. Bugs are not becoming more intelligent, or more anything. They simply mutate as their environment changes.

      • Not entirely true jeepers but the principle is correct, drugs like different envirOnments are filters driving organisms to evolve – the genes that tolerate the change or drug survive. I say not entirely true because it is possible to eradicate an organism or species, ie dodo or smallpox

      • Nature at work, Homo Sapiens seem to forget that we are just as much a part of nature as anything else that lives on this planet, evolution being the driving force, eventually we may become immune to the different strains of bugs etc, but due to the fact that we are a highly complex biological organism the mutations take longer to appear, we are always going to be playing catch-up to a simple highly adaptive organism like a virus.

  18. Can we clear something up? The confusion between immunisation and vaccination. Immunisation occurs when a person suffers from an infection and survives. It bestows lifelong immunity. Vaccination bestows short term immunity, hence we are now seeing outbreaks of measles and mumps in young people who have received the full MMR course.
    Chicken pox vaccine immunity declines by the mid 20s. It is often more severe and dangerous in adults.
    Add to this concerns about the contents of a vaccine vial.. mercury, aluminium? If we break a new style light bulb (containing mercury) there are guidelines about how to deal with the hazardous waste, yet many vaccinations contain this damaging neurotoxin.
    But what do I know… I am just a retired nurse
    Regards

    • Your definition is not recognised by the dictionaries or the NHS.
      Immunisation is the process by which an individual’s immune system becomes fortified against an agent (known as the immunogen).
      Immunisation is done through various techniques, most commonly vaccination.
      You are correct that the duration of effective immunisation varies from a few years to lifetime. Repeated vaccination is often required, either because the immunisation wears off, or the disease changes to a different variety (e.g. flu).

    • As someone who nearly died, along with my siblings, from measles I will take the vaccine every time, mercury and all.

      The issue of mercury in jabs is a total red herring in any case. We get far far more mercury from eating fish, and, to a lesser extent, meat and plants. It bioaccumulates. See also dental amalgam fillings.

      In any case the effects of mercury are only a problem in terms of prolonged and or heavy exposure. Otherwise it is naturally eliminated by the body.

      The amount present in a vaccine is neither here nor there.

      • Is it true that we can remOve mercury and other heavy metals? I thought they accumulated in specific organs when ingested, hence the increased danger as one ascends the food chain….

      • Yes, it is excreted by all the excretory organs, but very slowly. Thus a low dose can be eliminated over time but with high or repeated doses it will not be removed quickly enough.

      • @alex “Is it true that we can remOve mercury and other heavy metals? ”

        Yes- one can measure exposure in hair samples, eg arsenic. There are a few commercially available products which can help to remove heavy metals from the body (a lot gets stored in fat). These were tested on Russian aluminium smelters with fairly positive results. But removing heavy metals is not the sort of thing you do without some kind of medical /naturopathic supervision as like all remedies it’s important to get the dose correct- if too high, there can be serious side effects.

  19. Somewhere between off-topic, yet also related. If our bodies are healthier, we may be better able to fend off assorted bugs. However, several books out there make a good case that current diet guidelines and norms are harming, not helping our wellbeing. Gary Taubes has written at least a couple of books on this topic – one of which is an in-depth survey of many medical studies, and the erroneous conclusions drawn from many of them. Others, such as Mark Sisson, have dodged the seeming misinformation and come up a “primal’ approach to eating.

    Both my spouse and I took up by and large the recommended diet changes (i.e. reducing/eliminating grains, etc.), and have seen improvement on multiple fronts, from dropping weight, to having a persistently high cholesterol level in my spouse drop well into the normal range without medication.

    If more people pursued truly healthier eating habits, we might be at much less risk of various diseases, or have a better capacity to fight them off.

  20. surely the other point is that one works to the detriment of the other…ie antibiotics by poisoning the pathogen prevents the bodies development of resistance by imunity which might ultimately but not necessarily have solved the problem. ie short term gain defeats possible long term solution / evolution…..

    • I thought the biggest problem with vaccines was the one they cause to deadly and harmful diseases, i.e. helping our bodies kill them ;-)

  21. It’s actually very difficult in this busy life to listen news on Television, therefore I only use world wide web for that purpose, and take the most up-to-date news.

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