Jane Orient, M.D.
by Jane M. Orient, M.D.
Americans’ top concern in the election is their ability to get medical care when they are sick or injured. The top candidates’ differences are stark.
President Trump is for choice—and also quality and cost. Without choice, people are stuck with whatever the system permits at whatever price it sets.
With Trump’s America First Healthcare Plan, Americans have control over how their money is spent, and their physicians can personalize their treatment.
With the Biden Plan, Americans’ money goes into a central pot, and the top decisionmakers determine available therapy, to optimize population health (not yours).
President Trump’s record has been to open as many options as possible under the rigid restrictions of the [Un]Affordable Care Act (ACA). He removed the individual mandate of ACA, which imposed a penalty/tax on Americans unable to afford the costly plans satisfying ACA’s many requirements. He has eased counterproductive federal regulations that impede patient care and increase costs. He also pushed for “right to try” legislation. He understands the “pre-existing conditions” problem, and promises to protect those who are affected—without destroying the insurance system.
With COVID-19, Trump imposed international travel restrictions at a time when Democrats objected. He directed resources including ventilators to hard-hit areas, and dispatched a Navy hospital ship that turned out to be unnecessary. He encouraged the rapid production of personal protective equipment (PPE) and ventilators—responding to the pre-existing problems of failure to replace the stockpiles depleted in the influenza epidemic of 2009 (when Biden was in office) and of outsourcing our production capacity, largely to China. He recognizes the strategic need to bring industry home, especially production of essential drugs.
Trump allowed federalism to work for public health measures, instead of issuing dictatorial decrees from Washington, D.C. Some states did better than others. Downstate New York, ruled by Gov. Andrew Cuomo and Mayor Bill DeBlasio, have virtually the worst mortality statistics in the world, and a crushed economy besides. Gov. Cuomo’s alleged disregard of CDC guidelines and forcing nursing homes to admit COVID-infected patients may have contributed. Excluding downstate New York, the U.S. did better than most of Europe.
Trump mentioned hydroxychloroquine (HCQ) favorably, leading to a storm of partisan negativism about a previously noncontroversial, well-established drug. A similar storm happened in Brazil, when President Jair Bolsonaro not only mentioned the drug but took it very publicly himself when infected with COVID-19. He recovered quickly.
Following a negative pronouncement by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), most states placed restrictions on use of HCQ for COVID-19, although FDA acknowledges that it places no constraints on “off-label” uses of approved drugs.
Joe Biden and Kamala Harris haven’t been in a position to determine health policy, so they are running on promises. They deplore the possibility that the Supreme Court might find ACA unconstitutional. But they themselves may eventually get rid of ACA (and choice and private insurance plans). The Biden-Sanders Unity Task Force would revive the “public option” rejected in ACA. This would deliberately rig health insurance markets to guarantee that the new government health plan gets advantages denied to private health plans, paving the way to single payer. Confusingly, in the Trump-Biden debate, Biden said: “I’m not going to listen to him. The fact of the matter is I beat Bernie Sanders.”
As for COVID-19, Biden blames U.S. mortality on President Trump. “It is what it is because you are who you are,” he said in the debate. In June, he said, “If I’m elected, I’ll immediately reach out to Dr. Fauci and ask him to continue his incredible service to our country.” Dr. Anthony Fauci has been very negative about early COVID-19 treatment as “unproved,” and Biden has called Trump “totally irresponsible” for taking HCQ for a time until last May.
At age 80, Dr. Fauci himself may not be in his position much longer, but he exemplifies the mindset of federal bureaucracies. He was in charge early in the AIDS epidemic. In 1987, when patients were dying of pneumocystis pneumonia, activists pleaded with Dr. Fauci to issue guidance that suggested prophylactic treatment with Bactrim, a safe sulfa drug, based on studies done in transplant patients in 1977. Dr. Fauci refused, insisting on the “gold standard” of randomized controlled trials (RCTs). Since the National Institutes of Health refused to fund trials, activists raised the money themselves. By the time the results were ready, 2 years later, 17,000 patients had died needlessly. Since efforts to develop an HIV/AIDS vaccine have so far failed, the standard of care is now pre-exposure and post-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP and PEP).
In a 2020 re-play with COVID-19, Dr. Fauci disregards the experience of thousands of physicians who treat patients worldwide, demanding RCTs. About 100,000 patients may die because of lack of early treatment or prophylaxis.
In the COVID-19 crisis, Americans are seeing the effects of authoritarian rule over medicine, with censorship and outright suppression of personalized treatment, while centralized bureaucracies decide what is best for us.
On Nov 3, will America choose freedom?
by Dr Jane Orient
The exciting medical lesson that we should learn is that viral diseases are treatable.
The political lessons are that the government takeover of healthcare persists long after the 15-days-to-flatten-the-curve emergency is over, and that the medical technocracy is disastrous to both health and freedom. It is blocking the use of the methods used in countries that have had a 75 percent lower mortality rate.
Doctors have been telling their patients for decades: you have a virus, antibiotics don’t help, just “tough it out.”
With COVID-19, most doctors are telling patients to go home, isolate themselves, possibly report on their contacts, and go to the emergency room if they are otherwise sick enough to be admitted to hospital (extremely sick, these days). If asked, most doctors will refuse point blank to prescribe the antimalarial drug hydroxychloroquine (HCQ). They “know” it doesn’t work, based on the authorities’ pronouncements, even if they have zero experience themselves.
There is no home treatment that is recommended by the World Health Organization (WHO), the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the Infectious Diseases Society of America (IDSA), the American Medical Association (AMA), or your managed care plan.
In their view, “following The Science” means denying treatment. Doctors who defy this diktat may get fired, like Dr. Simone Gold, founder of America’s Frontline Doctors, or face an investigation and possible delicensure by government agencies.
FDA Commissioner Stephen Hahn states that physicians have the legal right to prescribe approved drugs for off-label uses. HCQ has been approved since 1955 and has been safely used by hundreds of millions of patients for malaria, lupus, and rheumatoid arthritis. It will probably never be approved specifically for COVID-19. It generally takes years and costs millions to add an official indication. Who will go through that just so they can advertise a cheap, off-patent drug for an additional use? At least 20 percent of prescriptions are off-label—but HCQ for COVID-19 is the only one that could subject a physician or pharmacy to the threat of a professional death sentence.
Epidemiologist Harvey Risch of Yale University estimates that 100,000 people may have lost their lives needlessly because of governmental agencies obstructing the use of HCQ.
The pretext for government prohibitions is always to protect public safety. Former AMA president Patrice Harris, M.D., in response to resident Donald Trump’s question “What have you got to lose?” said “possibly your life.” Millions of Americans are terrified of the threatened heart effects, which are exceedingly rare—in fact, HCQ probably protects the heart.
But what is really being protected is the medical technocracy, the medical-industrial-regulatory complex, dominated by bureaucrats inside important agencies such as the CDC, which have deep ties to extremely profitable industries.
The technocracy is heavily invested in vaccines and expensive drugs like remdesivir and monoclonal antibodies developed through advanced biotechnology. While waiting for miraculous advances, patients are dying. And many more may suffer long-term chronic illness that might have been prevented by early treatment.
Moreover, the country’s economy and freedom are dying as health authorities hold people hostage to results of their constant PCR testing that may be wildly inaccurate.
What if the authorities’ cherished dogmas about viral diseases in general are wrong?
In studying the response of COVID-19 to HCQ, Dr. Lee Merritt found that this treatment was not a new idea. Many scientific papers have been written in the past 40 years about the antiviral effects of many antimicrobials—antimalarials, antiparasitics such as ivermectin, and antibiotics such as azithromycin—on a number of viruses. “Like Rip Van Winkle, I suddenly awoke, after decades, to a completely new medical reality,” Dr. Merritt writes.
During the deadly “Spanish flu” pandemic in 1918-1920, patients were successfully treated with injections of quinine, a precursor to HCQ. How many people die of influenza every year because of failure to follow up on this lead?
We are also learning that the risk of COVID-19 is strongly correlated with vitamin D and zinc deficiency—although Big Tech censors may keep you from learning of this by calling it “harmful misinformation.”
There are many promising approaches to COVID-19 and other viral diseases, aside from Fauci’s favorite—Gilead’s remdesivir—and Bill Gates’s genetically engineered vaccines. You probably haven’t seen them in the media.
Let us hope that the shock of COVID-19 and the freedom-crushing response will awaken Americans to the danger of trusting our lives and liberty to the government-anointed experts of the medical-industrial-regulatory complex. If the remnant of independent physicians and institutions is destroyed with single payer or “Medicare for all,” we will have a COVID-19-like regime without end.
by Jane M. Orient, M.D.
The dictionary definition of “hype” is a deception or put-on, or promotional publicity of an extravagant or contrived kind. But regarding medical advances, it might be used to refer to hope.
Hope, or “false hope,” is something doctors are not supposed to give patients regarding a non-established treatment for a disease, especially one deemed to be incurable.
Hope is not needed if an outcome is assured. Hope is what sustains people when the outlook appears bleak. The alternative is despair.
Regarding COVID-19, the World Health Organization (WHO) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and other established national and international agencies define what is hype or false hope. If “hype,” also called “harmful misinformation,” appears on a website or social media, it will be disappeared, cancelled, or labeled as dangerous, as people are referred to WHO or CDC websites.
Remember that most entities promoting panic and despair have an ulterior motive. They are selling a remedy, the only thing that they say can save you from certain disaster.
WHO, CDC, et al., and the medical organizations and physicians who trust their authority are saying that COVID-19 is incurable. We must remain locked down, separated, and masked. If we catch it, we must go home, self-isolate, and come to the hospital if we can’t breathe. We can take some over-the-counter medications for fever and pain, but there is nothing to prescribe.
Once in the hospital, we will be separated from family, friends, clergy, and independent doctors. If we’re about to die, there may be a ventilator available for us. Our chance of surviving then may be 50 percent—or less. The hospital we are in might have a clinical trial for which we are eligible. We’ll be assigned to get—or not get—a drug that they think might work. Or perhaps we’ll get remdesivir on an FDA Emergency Use Authorization. The government has committed to buy 3 months’ worth of production at $3,120 per 5-day course of treatment (500,000 doses). If each course has six doses, that’s about $260 million. If we survive—remdesivir doesn’t seem to affect that—it will save us about four days in the hospital.
That’s real money, not just hype.
The latest “hype” to warn us about concerns quercetin. According to Medpage Today, the hype is “comparable to early data on hydroxychloroquine” (HCQ). This plant flavonoid, found in capers and green tea, shares one mechanism of action with HCQ. It helps zinc get into cells, where it interferes with the replication of the virus that causes COVID-19. Quercetin is commonly available over the counter. Some doctors recommend it because our government protectors (who are remdesivir promoters) have made it very difficult for doctors to prescribe or pharmacists to dispense the old, cheap drug HCQ.
If someone is promising a unique, secret, overly expensive, 100 percent effective cure-all, that sounds like hype. But doctors saying that “I have seen evidence that HCQ might help you, especially if taken early, and in my experience patients have quickly gotten better” is the practice of the art of medicine. It gives patients hope, and often relief. And now a controlled study at Henry Ford Hospital has shown that HCQ cuts the risk of death in hospitalized patients in half.
Promoting vitamin D, vitamin C, vitamin A, elderberry syrup, selenium, and many other available, reasonably priced preventatives and remedies might also be called “hype”—by WHO and those who are selling expensive novel drugs and universal vaccination as the only hope.
Is there hype about randomized controlled trials (RCTs)? They can be designed to fail, as by giving treatment too late or in an overdose that increases death or adverse effects, or they can fabricate data. Studies that had to be retracted were used to stop further research and treatment with HCQ.
Is there hype about vaccines? Trials race on, but they are tainted with ethical questions. For example, demonstrators in South Africa carried signs saying “We are NOT guinea pigs” and “Gates we are not your lab rats.” The African Centre for Biodiversity raised many concerns about the vaccine trial, such as withholding crucial safety information. The controversial Louis Farrakhan warns against taking the vaccine pushed by white multibillionaire Bill Gates.
Do the lives of black African Africans matter if we badly need research results?
Our hope for humanity depends on honest, ethical research and freedom to choose our own care, even if self-anointed U.S. or global authorities demean our communications as “hype.”
Let’s Think About it, Mr. President
by Jane M. Orient, M.D.
The idea of moving at “warp speed” probably resonates with Star Wars fans. A galactic empire is impossible if it takes 100 years for a signal, much less a warship, to move from one system to another at the universal speed limit, 186,000 miles per second, the speed of light
Serious science fiction lovers know that the warp drive does not traverse space at faster-than-light speeds. It warps space, or leaps through another dimension—it takes a massive shortcut.
So, what’s the shortcut for vaccine development?
- Safety testing? It is impossible to test for long-term consequences without observing recipients for a long time—not a few days or weeks. If experts are worrying about long-term effects of having the disease, why not about the vaccine? If one consequence might be a massive immune over-reaction to a later exposure to the coronavirus, we’d need to await another outbreak.
- Efficacy testing? One way to test for efficacy is to find an animal model. See whether unvaccinated animals get the disease when deliberately exposed, while vaccinated ones are protected. If this works, you still need to test humans: vaccinate one group, give one group a placebo, and see whether a larger proportion of the unvaccinated get sick. Normally, you would wait to see how the subjects fare in the real world, where they might get naturally exposed during their usual activities. This takes time. You could speed this up by giving them all a dose of the virus, which might kill some of them. That would be unethical—wouldn’t it?
- One could test for antibodies, but do they work? Some are asserting that the antibodies that survivors have might not protect them. Why would the vaccine antibodies be better? For one thing, the virus might mutate. Maybe it already has.
Then what about production and distribution?
- How about sinking hundreds of millions of dollars into producing various vaccine candidates, just in case they work? Then you could just waste it all if they don’t.
- For distribution, why not mobilize the armed forces to quickly vaccinate 300 million people? Our furloughed medical workers might not be up to the job. Might arms be needed if people resist? Incidentally, if everybody gets the vaccine, there’s no control group. Doesn’t the scientific method call for one?
Why the hurry?
Experts like Tony Fauci and Bill Gates say we cannot go back to work until there’s “a vaccine.” (Note that they did not say “a safe and effective vaccine.”)
In fact, we could go back today—if the government were not stopping us.
One reason for hurry is that the epidemic might be gone, and the vaccinators couldn’t take the credit. We have no vaccine for the “Spanish” flu of 1918, the “Asian” flu of 1958, or the “Hong Kong” flu of 1968, all of which killed far more than the current pandemic, and all of which went away. A speedy vaccine, which was developed for the predicted 1976 mass extinction/swine flu pandemic that never was, resulted in deaths and Guillain-Barré syndrome.
Humanity survived many waves of far more deadly pestilence before vaccines. The smallpox vaccine may have finally eliminated smallpox, but smallpox lesions were identified in Egyptian mummies from the 3rd century B.C., but not in earlier or later mummies. It re-emerged in the 6th and 7th centuries A.D., disappeared until the 11th century, then after being almost absent for about 300 years re-emerged in the 15th century.
In 2020, much has happened with amazing speed: the flattening of the economy, the suspension of civil liberties, the destruction of medical practices. Censorship of any information that the World Health Organization (WHO) doesn’t like, for example about potential game-changers like vitamin D and high-dose vitamin C. The declaration of a new drug remdesivir as the “standard of care” after an underwhelming study was prematurely stopped. The sequencing of the coronavirus genome. Revolutionary experimental DNA and RNA vaccine technologies.
Those who were seemingly prescient about the potential of coronavirus—Bill Gates holds a 2015 patent on a coronaviruscreated with recombinant gene technology, and the Gates Foundation held a crisis simulation modeled on a coronavirus in October 2019—did nothing to shore up preparedness measures such as equipment stockpiles.
Fear spreads at the speed of light. After 70 years and 100 million users of antimalarial drugs with remarkable safety, FDA is inspiring fear of heart problems from using hydroxychloroquine or azithromycin for COVID-10—but don’t worry if it’s for lupus, rheumatoid arthritis, or malaria.
We need an immediate return to letting doctors practice and letting people work. They need accurate information, so they can make prudent decisions about protecting themselves and their loved ones. We need an immediate end to the dictatorial influence of a few long-entrenched “experts” or media giants, and investigations of conflicts of interest with all deliberate speed.
What we do NOT need is panic-inspired warping of safety testing.
Jane M. Orient, M.D. is the editor of AAPS News, the Doctors for Disaster Preparedness Newsletter, and Civil Defense Perspectives, and is the managing editor of the Journal of American Physicians and Surgeons.
Some of the views expressed here are controversial. So, do ask your doctor. I hope you have one—not just the HMO or retail clinic “provider.”
Don’t panic. That is always good advice. If you, like the world’s economy, operate on just-in-time inventories, and did not take advice to stock up 3 weeks ago, do not join a mob at a big-box store. Somebody there is no doubt infected. Plus, there’s the risk of getting trampled or injured in a fist fight over the last roll of toilet paper. Most of the world survives without that luxury good. If you have no rice or beans or pasta in the pantry, that is more serious, but you should still avoid mobs if at all possible. Take-out and drive-through places are booming.
Don’t treat fever without a doctor’s advice. Fever is not a disease. It is an important defense mechanism. Very high fevers (say 105 degrees) can cause brain damage, and children can have seizures. But don’t pop Tylenol or ibuprofen at the first sign of fever. Many of the casualties in the 1918 pandemic might have been caused by heavy use of aspirin. Like aspirin, popular nonsteroidal anti-inflammatories (NSAIDS) such ibuprofen also have detrimental effects on blood clotting. Try lukewarm sponge baths for comfort.
Don’t rush out and get a flu shot. I know, a lot of doctors and public health authorities urge everybody to do this. Influenza can kill you, and the flu shot decreases that risk by 30% to 60%—but there is evidence that it can make COVID-19 worse, both from the earlier SARS epidemic and lab research. Like with so many things in medicine, we have to play the odds.
Don’t go to the emergency room or urgent care unless you are severely ill. There will be sick people there, and you might catch something. You also might end up with a big bill, say for a CT scan you didn’t really need. And if you have the flu or a cold or COVID-19, and don’t need IV fluids or oxygen, they can’t do anything for you. Telephone advice lines could help greatly.
Don’t go to events that are crowded, especially indoors in poorly ventilated rooms. Staying home is good.
Don’t demand to be tested and rely on the results. The tests are still in short supply and not very accurate. If you are at low risk, a positive test is likely to be a false positive. And if you are infected, the test may be negative at first. We need much more testing—mainly for public health monitoring.
Don’t waste. Expired medications are probably still good. Most drugs or essential ingredients are made in China, and supplies are running out. Masks (also mostly made in China) are meant to be disposable, but likely can’t be replaced (see below).
Don’t touch your face or your eyes. That is very hard—preventing that is one function of a mask and eye protection.
Don’t fall for internet scams, or malware. Hucksters will always be around to try to profit from panics. A new type of malicious virus is embedded malware in sites that come up on a search for information. (If you want to find the Johns Hopkins University , go to the university’s website, don’t Google “coronavirus map.”)
Now for some dos:
Do prepare to take care of yourself and your family. Be sure you have a fever thermometer, disposable gloves, plastic garbage bags, and cleaning supplies. A pulse oximeter, available in many places for around $40, is good to have to check oxygen levels.
Do clean and disinfect surfaces such as doorknobs, telephones, computer keyboards, toilets, and countertops often. Virus can persist there for days.
Do remember that sunlight is the best disinfectant. If you don’t have a pocket ultraviolet lamp (they are or were available on amazon), try putting things like masks or paper currency out in the sun. The idea should be rigorously tested, but in times of need, you may have to guess.
Do wash your hands often and use hand sanitizer. With SARS-CoV-2, most disinfectants work, including 70-percent-alcohol-based sanitizers.
Do put a mask on sick people if you can. For protecting yourself you need a minimum of an N95 mask and eye protection.
Do take your vitamins. Most people may be vitamin D deficient. Your need for vitamin C escalates with infection. Some 50 tons of vitamin C was shipped to Wuhan, and studies of effectiveness are underway.
Do get your essential prescriptions refilled for 90 days—the supply chain depends on China. If your managed-care plan won’t pay, consider paying cash. You may be able to get a good price with a coupon from .
Do protect your immune system, with adequate sleep, exercise, fresh air, and diet, especially avoiding sugar if you feel ill.
Do help your neighbors, and be responsible about protecting others as well as yourself from contagion.
Clusters of a dozen or so deaths may get nonstop “if-it-bleeds-it-leads” press coverage. But the lack of preparedness for the really, really big threats may be met with virtual radio silence—until panic breaks out.
The worst, possibly existential, threat is the that multiplies exponentially—in the accurate sense of the term: 400 cases today, 800 tomorrow, then 1600, 3200, 6400, 128000, 256000, 512000, and 1.024 million after only eight doubling times. Biological threats proliferate—until they run out of susceptible victims.
In 1918, the great influenza pandemic killed as many people in 11 months as the medieval Black Death did in 4 years. Ultimately, at least 50 million may have perished. Young healthy people, especially young soldiers headed off to the front in World War I, succumbed quickly. To avoid interfering with the war effort, the U.S. government denied and covered up the threat, preventing the implementation of public health measures.
Since then, the world has gotten smaller. A virus that from animals to humans in a meat market in China can cross the Pacific in hours. And despite the expenditure of $80 billion on a National Biologic Defense, the U.S. is arguably no better prepared than it was in 1918, state Steven Hatfill, M.D., and coauthors in their new book .
As in1918, we lack a vaccine or wonder drugs, but must rely on non-pharmaceutical interventions (NPI), and on public health authorities to track and try to contain the spread of infection.
Accurate information is critical. Can we trust governmental authorities to tell the truth? Travel restrictions, quarantine, closing businesses, and cancelling public events have a huge economic and potential political cost.
There can also be incentives to exaggerate the threat, in order to sell poorly tested vaccines or drugs. The 1976 was almost a non-event; more people were probably injured or even died from adverse effects of the heavily promoted vaccine.
The World Health Organization (WHO) has so far declined to declare the corona virus outbreak a global emergency, although cases have been reported in more than a dozen or so countries. China reported only hundreds of “confirmed” cases—while countless additional cases were not tested because of lack of diagnostic test kits.
The , “Another Decade, Another Coronavirus.” This 2019-nCoV virus is the third zoonotic (animal) coronavirus to infect humans in two decades. The SARS (severe acute respiratory syndrome) and MERS (Middle East respiratory syndrome) were contained. Other coronaviruses cause mild cold-like syndromes.
This virus has occasioned the quarantine of entire cities, for the first time since medieval times. This could not be done other than in authoritarian China, , but even there is unlikely to be effective—especially if before the order was implemented.
A report of 41 hospitalized patients in Wuhan, published in , showed that patients were relatively young (median age 49) and fewer than half had an underlying illness. Only 66% had been exposed to the Huanan seafood market, the apparent source of the infection. One patient (2%) had no fever; all had pneumonia; 29% had severe respiratory distress syndrome; and 12% had acute cardiac injury. Most cases may be very mild, .
The corona virus is transmitted by droplets coming into contact with mucous membranes, including the eye. It can persist on surfaces for days. People without fever or symptoms can transmit the illness during the incubation period, which might be as long as two weeks. At present, definitive diagnostic testing is available only from the .
In a severe outbreak, people whose job is not critical may need to stay home. Those who do not have a supply of food, essential medications, or other needed supplies would likely end up in a frantic crowd. Personal protective gear, for people who need to be in contact with the public or care for a sick family member, is already out of stock in medical supply houses. This includes gloves, wrap-around eye protection, and N-95 protective masks—regular surgical masks are probably of little help.
Panic is never helpful; staying calm is always good advice. But failure to heed previous warnings of the need for robust disaster planning, and complacency about medical technology and governmental resources, has set the stage for potential unprecedented disaster.
Individuals need to recognize that they themselves, and not 911 or the emergency room or the Federal Emergency Management Agency, may hold the key to their family’s and their community’s survival. Local authorities need to know that they may be on their own.
For now, stock up on supplies; cover those coughs and sneezes; wash hands frequently for at least 20 seconds; avoid crowds; and stay aware, as the situation could change rapidly.
Jane M. Orient, M.D. obtained her undergraduate degrees in chemistry and mathematics from the University of Arizona in Tucson, and her M.D. from Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons in 1974.
Children who grow up on a farm learn the “facts of life” at an early age, such as the observation in an old song: “They’re laying eggs now/ Just like they used ter/ Ever since that rooster/ Came into our yard.”
All species that propagate by sexual reproduction have two sexes, and every new organism arises from one male and one female gamete. Except in the rare hermaphroditic species, every organism has two different parents, one male and one female, permitting the wonderful variety that exists in the natural world.
One can debate endlessly about the role of nature or nurture in molding a person—or animal—but sex is 100 percent nature. It is not “assigned.” It is recognized at birth, or on a prenatal ultrasound—or hundreds of years later in a skeleton. If there is ambiguity, it is a medical emergency. The newborn needs to be seen immediately by a pediatric endocrinologist because he might die from adrenal insufficiency.
Sexual differentiation begins long before any visible differences—the Y chromosome affects every cell in the body. Skilled persons can sex chicks soon after they hatch.
Gender is a subjective concept these days. If there are not two, how many are there? Three, 50, 83, hundreds? New ones keep getting named. Doctors are being told to be hyperaware so as to treat each patient appropriately, as defined by the person’s self-identity. How about, instead of trying to stuff people into artificially created gender/racial/ethnic boxes, treating everyone as an individual?
There is some yang in every yin, and some yin in every yang, but the yin and the yang exist and are not the same. There is not a womb in a trans-woman, but there is in a trans-man who has not had it removed. We do patients a terrible disservice by pretending to treat organs that aren’t there, or by ignoring organs that are.
Roosters are different, as I learned visiting a farm, where I was attacked by the Bad Rooster. I might have been pecked to death, save for the timely intervention of an 8-year-old boy who thought boys were supposed to protect girls. (I will be his friend for life.)
This brings us to the reason for wanting to sex chicks. A farmer doesn’t want to waste money raising a chicken that doesn’t lay eggs. You only need a few roosters. They fight and are disruptive. Similarly, if you are raising sheep or cattle, you want to be the one who is in charge of the herd—so you castrate most of the males.
Now, if your goal is to have a compliant society of dependent serfs, you need to geld (“detoxify”) the males or make them irrelevant. A father in each family protects his own and works hard so his offspring can thrive. But strong families can thwart the designs of would-be rulers.
The stated goals of the growing transgender movement sound noble: make a troubled minority happy, and do away with patriarchy, discrimination, and oppression. And by the way with overpopulation. This assumes we are smarter than Mother Nature.
If we could turn a lot of boys into girls, or at least non-boys, and shame the rest, there would be fewer roosters. True, some girls want to become boys, but while they can grow a beard they cannot increase their muscle strength by 40 percent and their lung capacity by 25 percent, nor can they match a genetic male in bone density and body size. What prevents men from crushing women physically is civilization. Boys must be trained not to hit girls. But if a man “identifies” as a woman, “she” can dominate women in prisons, shelters for abused women, and female sports. The rooster attitude may persist along with the strength.
Would we be better off with women in charge? Women like Catherine the Great, Elizabeth I, “Bloody Mary,” or a modern radical feminist? Or how about a bureaucratic technocracy in which your every thought and deed is monitored—as in Orwell’s 1984.
To eliminate Thought Crime under Ingsoc, it was necessary to make people believe the absurd: that two plus two is not equal to four.
It is equally absurd to say that boys can be turned into girls, or vice versa. But people are being punished professionally for asserting that there are two and only two sexes, determined and fixed by biology.
Could we get rid of natural, complementary sex, and strong men, without getting rid of humanity?
Jane M. Orient, M.D. obtained her undergraduate degrees in chemistry and mathematics from the University of Arizona in Tucson, and her M.D. from Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons in 1974
The words of the year as 2019 ends appear to be “OK Boomer”and “woke.”To this Boomer, it appears that the younger generation is blaming us for all the Evil in the world, from their perch of “woke”moral superiority. They consider us to be out of touch and over the hill.
It is apparent that there is a giant political divide in this country, partly but not entirely intergenerational. In my opinion, my generation bears a lot of blame, but probably not in the way that most Millennials think. Waiting for us to die and get out of the way is not going to solve the problem—particularly in medicine.
There is one indisputable advantage I have as a Boomer. I have had the experience of being young; my younger patients have not experienced growing old. I know exactly what that cross-stitched embroidery on my wall means: “Ve get so soon old und so late schmart.”
I was young and impressionable and passionately held some very ill-informed opinions. I did some stupid things—but did not do worse things because I had the benefit of learning something from older people’s experience.
I had the inestimable advantage, which so many young people today lack, of having a traditional extended family. My mother was at home, running my father’s contracting business. My grandparents lived next door. I played Scrabble with Grandma, and learned a little German from Grandpa. My father was home every night. I got some invaluable experience, not especially enjoyable at the time, by sweeping the floor and picking up bent nails at construction sites.
I got a nice head start because of my dad’s hard work. It put me through medical school debt-free. Most Millennials cannot have the same advantage. Their daddies could not have learned skills like carpentry at home, or built a house by themselves, starting with the surveying and ditch-digging with pick and shovel. “Protective”regulations would have prevented it. They cannot build up savings as I could, when one could earn real interest not cancelled out by inflation, and when much less of one’s paycheck was devoured by taxation.
Do Millennials have the same chance to get into medical school as I did? It depends. The admissions process in my day was generally meritocratic even if not entirely fair. Today, the main emphasis is “diversity.”Straight white males and Asians seem to face discrimination. A correct attitude is critical, while organic chemistry may not be required at all—never mind that the body is a chemical factory, built on carbon-based (i.e. organic) chemicals. The new doctors are different—not necessarily better.
Virtually all students will face a crushing load of debt, because of soaring tuition without any improvement in knowledge output. Unable to take the financial risk of declaring independence, and faced with new, ever-increasing re-certification requirements, young physicians will be enslaved to the opinions of their employers and specialty boards.
The Boomer generation is largely responsible. The Berkeley window-smashing “Free Speech”movement assured your ability to constantly fling obscene or profane words, while undermining cultural norms and traditional authorities. One institution after another—universities, the media, churches, professional organizations, charities, political parties, even businesses—surrendered to the radicals’Marxist, holier-than-thou ideology.
Boomers also brought us the “entitlements”that are bankrupting government and mortgaging the labor of the younger generation. Most don’t care about robbing their grandchildren when this consequence is pointed out to them. State governments, professionals, insurers, and bureaucrats are also most concerned about getting their share of the loot.
The younger generation throughout its early years is trapped in age-segregated cocoons, surrounded by guilt-inducing, fear-inspiring indoctrination; immersed in virtual reality; isolated from natural family, their cultural history, opportunities to learn real-world skills, and dissenting opinions.
As C.S. Lewis pointed out, it is important to read old books because each generation makes different mistakes. It is critical for the generations to talk to each other—to break down the barriers of censorship and distrust, to seek universal truths, and to keep the flame of freedom alive. We need to be awake and in touch.
Jane M. Orient, M.D. obtained her undergraduate degrees in chemistry and mathematics from the University of Arizona in Tucson, and her M.D. from Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons in 1974.
Democrat presidential candidates are sparring over how much to expand Medicare. Should it be Medicare for all, for people over 50 and children, or for “all who want it”? Does “all”include veterans, Native Americans, and military dependents, who now have their own government program? Does it include everybody who happens to be in the country, legally or illegally? And do the benefits include just what today’s Medicare beneficiaries get, or everything the candidate can think of—dental, eyeglasses, hearing aids, mental health treatment, addiction treatment, “sex-change”surgery, etc.? Does it even include long-term care, which the Affordable Care Act had to discard because it was unaffordable?
Who wouldn’t want that?
In 1965, a . They were happy with their private coverage, which nearly half of them had. They did not trust government. To assure the success of “his”program, President Lyndon Johnson took away their private coverage. Insurers could not, under contract law, cancel an individual’s policy, say because they got sick, but they could cancel everybody’s coverage—and they did. This was a precedent for the Affordable Care Act (ACA), which many people had unless it could meet stringent “grandfather”requirements.
“If you like your plan, you can keep your plan”was an acknowledged . Elizabeth Warren doesn’t worry about that because . Possibly true, but that doesn’t mean people would choose the government alternative.
With rare exceptions such as a continuation of policies from employers, seniors do not have and cannot get a private plan that duplicates Medicare coverage. They can only get “Medigap”policies to cover deductibles and things Medicare does not cover.
After a huge percentage of the population got “covered”by the government, did things get better? People did get more treatment. Great advances in medical technology occurred—likely unrelated to Medicare. But for the first time in 90 years, leading to massive government interventions to put a lid on them. Administrative demands burgeoned—there are now at least . And government eroded the value of people’s savings by inflating the dollar. If you had it would be worth only $1.24 today.
Did evil, greedy private insurers go away? No, they competed for government contracts to administer Medicare. As one whistleblower discovered, carriers can get away with without even triggering an investigation. Or they went into the Medigap business. AARP, which purports to represent seniors, has received more than $4 billion in “royalties”from UnitedHealth since the passage of ACA. According to a lawsuit , AARP effectively acts as an unlicensed insurance agent that collects what amount to illegal kickbacks.
Medicare Advantage plans are widely touted for offering extra services such as gym memberships. But there’s a : once in, if you get sick your costs soar and it can be very expensive to get out. Also, about a third of such plans have a very narrow network of physicians.
But in traditional Medicare, you get worry-free treatment, right? Not exactly. Government controls are constantly tightening. The ironically named provides that clinicians must refer to “appropriate use criteria”(AUC) when ordering advanced imaging studies like CT scans or MRIs. We’re supposedly in a “testing period”during which payment won’t be denied. However, physicians are already receiving notices from their hospital that they now MUST use AUC when ordering out-patient studies.
If you are admitted to hospital, you will be greeted by a worker checking on advance directives that will enable the hospital to withhold treatment. If your care is expected to cost a lot, and the Prospective Payment System allowed charge won’t cover it, the hospital has . This also averts the possibility of a penalty for re-admitting a patient. Hospice is a one-way transfer.
Medicare for All means government-directed, corporate-managed care. The managed-care “insurance”cartel, giant hospital chains, and private-equity-owned medical practices will make sure that you get your flu shot (likely mandatory), your anti-tobacco lecture, your silver sneakers, your 15 profitable “preventative”drugs, cross-sex hormones, abortion on demand—and eventually your terminal sedation.
Beyond that, you’re on your own—if there are any private options left and if you still have any after-tax money.
Is that what Americans want?
Jane M. Orient, M.D. obtained her undergraduate degrees in chemistry and mathematics from the University of Arizona in Tucson, and her M.D. from Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons in 1974. She completed an internal medicine residency at Parkland Memorial Hospital and University of Arizona Affiliated Hospitals and then became an Instructor at the University of Arizona College of Medicine and a staff physician at the Tucson Veterans Administration Hospital. She has been in solo private practice since 1981 and has served as Executive Director of the Association of American Physicians and Surgeons (AAPS) since 1989. She is currently president of Doctors for Disaster Preparedness
After a period of silence, Dr. Bandy Lee and her committee of mental-health “experts”have again burst onto the scene, angling to participate in the impeachment of President Trump. They are defying the Goldwater Rule, which holds that it is unethical for physicians to diagnose patients they have not personally examined. They claim that President Trump is a such a serious threat to the nation that they are allowed to violate rules.
“We don’t believe there is the need for any further evaluation, and we are making ourselves available for the impeachment hearing because we believe that mental health issues will become critical as pressures from the impeachment hearings mount,”Dr. .“In other words, the more successful the impeachment proceedings become, the more dangerous the psychological factors of the president will become.”
Obviously, the thing to do is to increase the psychological pressure on a person you declare to be unstable.
Dr. Lee’s “medical assessment”of the President’s“mental capacity to fulfill the duties of his office”includes the examination of tweets, public appearances, and the 448-page Mueller report. “There is very little that a personal examination will add,”Lee said.
She denies that she is actually making a diagnosis. Indeed, “unfitness for office”is an opinion, a conclusion that is not in the DSM, the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of currently defined psychiatric diagnoses.
Regardless of one’s opinion about President Trump, this self-appointed “Independent Expert Panel for Presidential Fitness”should concern all Americans. Where does a group of academic experts get the ability or the authority to determine whether the President is “capable of keeping the country safe”?
The U.S. Constitution provides several methods of “regime change,”which is what Congressional Democrats, the mainstream news media, and this Panel seem determined to achieve. The first is elections. In 2016, Americans voted for a change from the policies of Obama and Clinton and the imbedded bureaucracy. Ever since then, the losers have been seeking to nullify this result. Attacks on the President by the press have been unrelenting. Unlike Abraham Lincoln or Woodrow Wilson, this President has not imprisoned any journalists or shut down any newspapers. But he does make sarcastic remarks—and his opponents would like to deny him the forum of social media.
Second is the , which provides for the removal of a President for incapacity. This might have removed Woodrow Wilson after a devastating stroke had it been in existence at the time. It requires action by the Vice President and a majority of executive officers or a body appointed by Congress—not a few activist academics. This has so far been a non-starter.
Finally, there is impeachment, for “high crimes and misdemeanors.”In American jurisprudence, proceedings are supposed to be triggered by a crime—not by the Soviet KGB method of “show me the man, and I will name his crime.”Or worse, “KGB Plus”—show me the man, and I will inventhis crime.
In a world where there are so many ever-changing rules that everyone might be inadvertently committing anyone could be prosecuted. But one is at least supposed to have certain rights: confronting the accuser, assistance of counsel, access to all the evidence, the right to call and cross-examine witnesses. And knowing exactly what the charges are.
Why should psychiatrists be intruding themselves into this legal process? Are there Thought Crimes that they have a special ability to discern?
Ordinary Americans should be very concerned. If this can happen to the President, it can happen to them. And it does.
One alarming example is the “to which physicians may be subjected by people who for some reason want to destroy them. There are virtually no due-process rights. The examiner has the status of a physician, but no obligation to act in the “patient’s”(target’s) best interest. Some psychiatrists may presume to have god-like power to judge a person’s emotions, intentions, and capacity—asserted in the name of safety or “security.”“Red flag”laws are another example.
President Trump may be right in saying: “They’re not coming for me. They are coming for you. I’m just in the way.”
Bandy Lee and associates are showing us a method to remove undesirables if legal process fails.