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Author Topic: They finally found a cure for AIDS
Gecko
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http://www.cnn.com/2007/WORLD/africa/03/15/koinange.africa/index.html

It's about time

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ketchupqueen
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Oh, good grief. That is saddening and terrifying and makes me angry.
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Storm Saxon
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This is almost as bad as those guys who think they can lay on hands and do healing through prayer.
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ketchupqueen
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I believe that people can be healed through prayer.

I even believe that herbs can have curative power.

But everything about that story makes me angry.

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Jay
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Wonder what is in it?
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mr_porteiro_head
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The recipe, "seven herbs and spices", sounds a lot like the secret recipe at KFC.
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ClaudiaTherese
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quote:
Gambian Health Minister Tamsim Mbowe, a trained physician with multiple medical degrees, defended the so-called herbal cure.

"I can swear, 100 percent, that this herbal medication His Excellency is using is working. It has the potency to treat and cure patients infected with the HIV-virus," he told CNN.

What does he have to say to skeptics?

"I will tell them, as a Western medical trained doctor with 13 years experience meeting different professors, meeting different colleagues of mine, I've seen His Excellency, my leader, coming up with herbal medications that are able to treat and cure patients with HIV-virus, which have been proven within all medical and laboratory parameters."

All medical and laboratory parameters?
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Tante Shvester
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Yup. All of them. Even that weird one that no one knows what to do with.

I'm with KQ on this. I find it exploitative and horrible.

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ludosti
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This sounds a little too much to me like the "sleep with a virgin to cure AIDS" idea...
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ketchupqueen
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This dude reminds me of Nero.
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SC Carver
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I agree with all of you. It is horrible to take advantage of the weak and desperate.


But... What if it worked?

I don't believe it will, but how crazy would it be if they did find a cure like this. Itd be up there with Penicillin. Sounds like an interesting Sci-Fi book.

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ketchupqueen
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If it did work, then what he is doing is even more horrible. Let me put it this way:

If God gave me a cheap, readily available herbal cure for AIDS (or cancer, or heck, even antibiotic-resistant strep), and I gave it to someone (ALONG WITH their regular medicine) and found out that it worked, I would IMMEDIATELY submit it for testing and get the findings published so that everyone could benefit from it. IMMEDIATELY. It would be wrong to do otherwise. This guy has people offering to do the testing at no cost to him, and he kicks them out of the country. Even if he is telling the absolute truth, what he is doing is unconscionable.

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brojack17
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I understand the plecebo effect does work many times, but this just seems cheap.
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ketchupqueen
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quote:
Itd be up there with Penicillin.
I read a great book on the development of penicillin, and it was a lot more than just, "Hey, look, bread mold kills other germs!" I can look it up for you if you're interested. It was really well written.
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Noemon
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I'd love to read it, KQ--sounds like a good book.
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neo-dragon
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If I may play Devil's advocate, this stuff is indeed likely causing a placebo effect, and thus it is at least doing good by making people feel better. Having it tested and exposed as just sugar-water, so to speak, would ruin the effect.

The only problem is that people are giving up their conventional medication, so someone needs to encourage them to take both.

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mr_porteiro_head
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quote:
The only problem is that people are giving up their conventional medication, so someone needs to encourage them to take both.
Um, they are encouraging that. Well, until they get booted out of the country, that is.
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ludosti
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While the placebo effect likely accounts for the people feeling better, it is disturbing for them to think "feeling better" = "I'm cured".
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SC Carver
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Yes, I guess we will have to chalk it up to the placebo effect at best. It could be outright deception, They wouldn't let CNN look at any medical records, those "cured" people might not have ever had HIV to start with.
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ketchupqueen
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quote:
Originally posted by Noemon:
I'd love to read it, KQ--sounds like a good book.

Here you go.
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neo-dragon
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quote:
Originally posted by mr_porteiro_head:
quote:
The only problem is that people are giving up their conventional medication, so someone needs to encourage them to take both.
Um, they are encouraging that. Well, until they get booted out of the country, that is.
Yeah, I mean the guy who's giving the "cure" should say that it works best in conjunction with the other medicine or something.
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ketchupqueen
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But he's a modern-day Nero, so he won't.
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ketchupqueen
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quote:
Originally posted by ludosti:
While the placebo effect likely accounts for the people feeling better, it is disturbing for them to think "feeling better" = "I'm cured".

That is one of the scariest parts to me.
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mr_porteiro_head
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quote:
Originally posted by neo-dragon:
quote:
Originally posted by mr_porteiro_head:
quote:
The only problem is that people are giving up their conventional medication, so someone needs to encourage them to take both.
Um, they are encouraging that. Well, until they get booted out of the country, that is.
Yeah, I mean the guy who's giving the "cure" should say that it works best in conjunction with the other medicine or something.
Ah, I see. When you said "someone needs to", I foolishly assumed you meant that someone needs to, not that one particular person needs to. [Razz]
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neo-dragon
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Some people just don't know how to read between the lines. [Roll Eyes]

Sorry, I should clarify; I mean you. [Big Grin]

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Shigosei
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What a horrible thing to do. This is one of the reasons "alternative" medicine isn't harmless--it causes people to stop using conventional treatment that has been demonstrated to work. And if it really did work, it would be silly to refuse to submit it to testing that would provide solid evidence that it is more effective than current treatments. I wonder what the president's motive is. Profit? Increasing his power over his people? Has he convinced himself that it works (but then why not allow it to be tested)?

I also agree with Storm Saxon that this is a lot like "faith healers." I don't have a problem with people believing that prayer can heal, so long as it's a supplement, not a substitute, for medical care. It's the people who hold huge gatherings and claim to be able to cure anything who are like this man. They fleece their followers and give nothing but false hope in return.

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kmbboots
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Also, if they think they are cured, they are more likely to spread the virus.
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mr_porteiro_head
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quote:
Originally posted by neo-dragon:
Some people just don't know how to read between the lines. [Roll Eyes]

Sorry, I should clarify; I mean you. [Big Grin]

[ROFL]

Even though that's a completely unfounded statement from this conversation we just had, it also happens also be completely true.

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PrometheusBound
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This seems to be very common in Africa. The Minister for Health for South Africa, the wealthiest and most western of all sub-Saharan states, surports this sort of thing.
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Bokonon
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quote:
Originally posted by mr_porteiro_head:
The recipe, "seven herbs and spices", sounds a lot like the secret recipe at KFC.

KFC has eleven herbs and spices. I proclaim it cures brain cancer! My ancestors told me so, in a dream!

-Bok

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ClaudiaTherese
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quote:
Originally posted by ketchupqueen:
quote:
Originally posted by ludosti:
While the placebo effect likely accounts for the people feeling better, it is disturbing for them to think "feeling better" = "I'm cured".

That is one of the scariest parts to me.
Exactly. Especially since this is a communicable disease.

---
Edited to add: Or, what kmboots said.

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Counter Bean
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Sex with a virgin is supposed to work as a cure to, imagine what this does to the age you have to go too to find a virgin, and the number of young girls violated and infected...

Still it is a kind of win win, the fatalities will decrease the spread of AIDS or the cure will work...

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Icarus
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Yes. Luckily, AIDS kills within a day or two after you acquire the HIV virus, so you don't live long enough to pass it on.

Oh wait, that's bullshit.

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mr_porteiro_head
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See, now I'm all confused, Icky, because now you used that word in a way that that, to me, is spot on.
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Noemon
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quote:
Originally posted by Bokonon:
quote:
Originally posted by mr_porteiro_head:
The recipe, "seven herbs and spices", sounds a lot like the secret recipe at KFC.

KFC has eleven herbs and spices. I proclaim it cures brain cancer!
And it tastes like chicken!
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Counter Bean
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Some think HIV does not kill at all... However anything that speeds the process up would effect the statistics over time.
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Nighthawk
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My dog, the cup of tea leaves in front of me and the arrangement of chicken bones I threw on the floor tell me this is bull.
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Kwea
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quote:
Originally posted by neo-dragon:
If I may play Devil's advocate, this stuff is indeed likely causing a placebo effect, and thus it is at least doing good by making people feel better. Having it tested and exposed as just sugar-water, so to speak, would ruin the effect.

The only problem is that people are giving up their conventional medication, so someone needs to encourage them to take both.

This is just plain wrong on so many levels that it is hard for me to respond civilly.

It is NEVER acceptable to lie to people about their health and their treatment options.

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Kwea
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quote:
Originally posted by Counter Bean:
Some think HIV does not kill at all... However anything that speeds the process up would effect the statistics over time.

Very few people believe that. People who matter, are educated, and who don't talk out their ass all the time.

I am not surprised you don't know any of them.

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Euripides
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quote:
Originally posted by ludosti:

This sounds a little too much to me like the "sleep with a virgin to cure AIDS" idea...

What!? I must have missed that 'cure.'

quote:
Originally posted by Shigosei:

I don't have a problem with people believing that prayer can heal, so long as it's a supplement, not a substitute, for medical care.

I have a problem with it even when it's just a supplement. It takes credit away from the true source of the cure - the medically trained professional.

Exceptions are situations where the patient explicitly recognises that the benefits of prayer are restricted to putting one in a calmer or more confident state of mind; which may have health effects. In that way, prayer is effectively the same as the visualization exercises some doctors encourage their cancer patients to try, which involves manifesting the disease in one's imagination, and then fighting or crushing it (or really any form of meditation exercise).

quote:
Originally posted by Counter Bean:

Still it is a kind of win win, the fatalities will decrease the spread of AIDS or the cure will work...

That wasn't funny.
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ketchupqueen
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quote:
quote:
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Originally posted by ludosti:

This sounds a little too much to me like the "sleep with a virgin to cure AIDS" idea...
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

What!? I must have missed that 'cure.'

Yeah, that belief contributes to the excessively high (more than 50%, last I heard) rape rate in South Africa. (Yes, you read that right-- last I heard, more than 50% of all women AND GIRLS have been raped.) That includes an alarmingly high rate of child rape, including infants, sometimes as young as six months. [Cry]
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Euripides
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I had no idea...

I was going to use 3 crying graemlins, but somehow the levity of multiple emoticons seemed inappropriate.

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foundling
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(from the linked article)
"The offence is situated firmly outside the generally, and clinically accepted diagnostic criteria of paedophilia as defined in the Diagnostic Statistics Manual of Mental Disorders [DSM IV]."

I dont understand this. Child rape is outside the bounds of paedophilia? Isnt a basic definition of paedophilia sexual attraction to children? I understand that most cases of child rape related to the "Virgin Cure" are opportunistic and not premeditated. But, they still involve sexual intercourse with a child. In our society, wouldnt anybody who did this, regardless of motivation, be labeled a paedophiliac?
To me, taking away the stigma of paedophilia from child rape where the motive is a "cure" is a very, very bad idea. It seems to put it on a level that, while serious, is not as... universally detested as paedophilia is.
I know that every society has different standards for when childhood ends and sexual maturity begins. But NO society accepts sex with an INFANT as being anything other than disgusting.

Something that I find fascinating and horrifying about this is the fact that SO MANY men are able to set aside an instinctive aversion to sexual attraction to young children, and only because they fear for thier lives. What a terrifying thought, that fear can motivate a very large group of people to do something so incredibly harmful to their next generation. Can you imagine the repurcussions this level of sexual violence directed at very young children is going to have in 5, 10, 20 years? Each individual act is reprehensible, but taken together they represent a truly horrifying picture of what humans are capable of.

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Euripides
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There was a psychological experiment I once read about which suggested that men typically exhibit an instinctive sexual attraction towards young (about 12 years old) children; in fact, in that study the sexual arousal exhibited towards children was greater than that exhibited towards adults (it involved showing a sample group of men slides, with equipment to detect erection). I'd imagine it would be different with infants though.

I'm not condoning paedophilic behaviour or rape in any way shape or form; just suggesting that this "instinctive aversion to sexual attraction to young children" is actually a cultural construct which exists for very good reasons.

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King of Men
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quote:
I dont understand this. Child rape is outside the bounds of paedophilia? Isnt a basic definition of paedophilia sexual attraction to children?
Presumably they are saying that this form of rape doesn't involve sexual attraction. In a somewhat similar vein, and without wanting to turn this into an onanism thread, very few people are attracted to their right hands, but nevertheless.
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Synesthesia
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How in the world can people believe something so foolish?
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pH
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A lot of people everywhere believe a lot of superstitions and illogical things. How many people at least in passing are concerned that breaking a mirror will bring them bad luck?

-pH

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Counter Bean
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What they need to do is go out in the moonlight with a dead cat in cemetary, then you dig a hole near the fresh grave of a wicked man, spin the the cat three times over your head...
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kmbboots
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That's for curing warts.
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Counter Bean
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What I want to know is when the forced immigrant descendants from Africa will start having a 'thank you white folk' day for bringing them here away from that world...
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