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Alternative Medicine and secularism
Posted: 24 April 2017 07:29 AM   [ Ignore ]
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I think in many cases alternative medicine is safer than conventional medicine.  The problem with alternative medicine is that it has been denied legitimacy by the medical establishment for so long.  Wilhelm Reich is a good example of this.  I think alternative medicine should be covered by insurance the same way other doctors are.  A good way to root out the quacks are to recognize the legitimate ones from the illegitimate ones.  I think that would work well.  One thing I run into time and again is I feel like I have to make the society run without getting paid for it.  This society has a large central government and seems to neglect its people a great deal.  We are the richest country in the world and people often get the impression that the government is “running out of money.”

It is worth mentioning that neglect is an active form of abuse.  If we the people pay taxes and are citizens I think there is an unspoken agreement with the government that they should fulfill certain services to us.  I think the social contract needs to be edited to say the least.

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Posted: 27 April 2017 09:15 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1 ]
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There is only one kind of medicine. “Alternative” medicine is fake medicine. Anything that hasn’t been tested and validated as effective is not medicine.

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[color=red“Nothing is so good as it seems beforehand.”
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Posted: 01 May 2017 04:09 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2 ]
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There is a distinction between choosing alt med for yourself and expecting government, insurance companies, and others to support it regardless of whether or not it can be shown to be safe and effective. The fact that you believe it is, and that opposition to it is ideological rather than principled and evidence-based, doesn’t mean that the rest of society agrees with you. My definition of “quack” probably differs significantly from yours, and part of the role of government is to utilize legitimate sources of facts, like science, to distinguish between claims in such debates.

I would oppose my taxes being spent on ineffective and pseudoscientific treatments. Even more important, I oppose allowing proponents of alt med to mislead people, regardless of their intentions or their own beliefs, into believing things that aren’t true. If someone wants to take homeopathy, they have aright to. But if they want to sell it to other people, or give it to their children instead of effective medical care, they don’t have a right to unless they can prove it works by conventional, established scientific methods.

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Posted: 19 June 2017 04:44 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 3 ]
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Chiropractics is something that has proven benefits.  Chiropractics is a medical field that has had to withstand a negative campaign by the AMA since at least the 50’s.  It seems like some of you are simply vassals for the medical status quo.  The idea that the only valid perspective is the one that comes from the status quo in the medical system is simply not accurate.  There are many perspectives and options. 

There are many things wrong with the status quo in the medical system.  700,000 people go the ER every year due to side effects from pharmaceuticals.  There is growing evidence on the link between vaccines and autism.  And many people wait very long periods of time for a diagnosis or treatment for their illness if they are diagnosed at all.  There are also many reports of medical malpractice every year.  Doctors are 2x as likely to commit suicide as the rest of the population, in spite of their increased wealth and status.  There is nothing wrong with being skeptical about the “science” involved in the medical status quo.  The medical system is a product of the influence of pharmaceutical companies, insurance companies etc.

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Posted: 21 June 2017 03:31 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 4 ]
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Officer who shot Philando Castile said smell of marijuana made him fear for his life

  I wonder if he would have shot the driver if the officer had smelled alcohol and he would have been in fear for his life?

IMO, this is an example of ignorance about the properties of marijuana. The fact is that marijuana tends to inhibit aggression, unlike alcohol, speed, cocaine, crack, heroin, and a host of custom opiods.

The current opiod addiction problem is NOT caused by marijuana. It caused by ready availability of prescription opiods.

Placing marijuana in the same class as heroin, fentanil, cocaine, etc. which has given THC a totally wrong reputation.

This is the same ridiculous thinking as placing aspirin in the same class as coumadin. They are both blood thinners, no?

Then why is it that you can take a baby aspirin for as long as you live without having any side-effects, whereas if you take coumadin you need to have tests every week and adjust your dosage regularly, because it is an unpredictable drug that can kill you from a single overdose?

I nearly died from coumadin, because my physician prescribed it and then went on vacation for three weeks and I could not get another Dr to test me, because there were no prior arrangements made with another physician. I was in the hospital for 30 days to recover from this little oversight. I now take my little aspirin pill every day and I am doing just fine.

This ridiculous comparison holds true for marijuana as a dangerous drug.  One can smoke marijuana without any negative side-effects or physical addiction for as long as you live. As a drug it’s dangers of smoking it can be compared to taking an aspirin every day, and then eating a large piece of pie, which will give you a sugar high. As far as I know, no one has ever died from a marijuana overdose.

In Holland marijuana is available for elderly people in long-term elderly care facilities as a means to avoid depression and relief from pain and suffering from the symptoms associated with aging. If it were medically dangerous I am confident that this would be medically prohibited .

Marijuana needs to be reclassified !  Then it can be legally researched and properly identified as a recreational drug, and more importantly as a non addictive prescription for patients who find real relief for many symptoms in its use.

Note, that I am opposed to driving under the influence of any mind altering drug, but drunk drivers, not marijuana smokers, are the main cause for traffic accidents and aggressive behaviors.

Why are alcohol and nicotine not classified as a dangerous addictive drugs?

[ Edited: 22 June 2017 01:01 AM by Write4U ]
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Posted: 25 June 2017 05:55 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 5 ]
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LoisL - 27 April 2017 09:15 PM

There is only one kind of medicine. “Alternative” medicine is fake medicine. Anything that hasn’t been tested and validated as effective is not medicine.

While I agree with you that alternative medicine proponents tend to exaggerate the benefits of natural medicinal benefits in many cases, I disagree with your assessment that only laboratory tests can prove the general benefits of natural medicines.

Thousands of years of practical application do count as a long term tests of the effectiveness of herbal medicines and salves. Today we put medicines on the market which prove to be disastrous in the long term. A clear example is the marketing of Thalidomide, without sufficient long term testing. The use of DDT for pest control turned out to be more harmful to humans than for pest control.

Some ~60% of all currently used artificially manipulated medicines are or were based on purified plant extracts. Plants with medicinal properties do exist in nature and not all “medicine men” were charlatans, but possessed great knowledge of the medicinal properties of plants and their effective uses for many diseases and they did so for free. Some of them studied and tested plants for decades and had apprentices, who would study with them so that they could pass on the age-old knowledge of natural medicines.

In those days, the title medicine man was held in high esteem.  Why does China, now a modern country, still use natural medicines. Are they stupid or snake-oil salesmen?

The modern “snake-oil” salesmen came much later, when you had to start paying for medicines and the concept of greed became part of the equation in health care.

Comes to mind the current opioid addiction, which is actually acquired from the carelessly applied prescription.  IMO, the extraction and purification of naturally occurring “medicines” has caused more harm than any medicine man from 2000 years ago ever did in many cases.

To dismiss the knowledge acquired from millenia of effective uses of naturally occurring medicines is hasty and somewhat prejudicial, IMO.

[ Edited: 25 June 2017 06:06 PM by Write4U ]
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Posted: 25 June 2017 06:16 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 6 ]
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If modern medicines are so safe through laboratory tests, I wonder why we have this request from the FDA

Report Problems to the Food and Drug Administration

You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit the FDA MedWatch website or call 1-800-FDA-1088.

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Posted: 25 June 2017 07:09 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 7 ]
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Write4U - 25 June 2017 06:16 PM

If modern medicines are so safe through laboratory tests, I wonder why we have this request from the FDA

Report Problems to the Food and Drug Administration

You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit the FDA MedWatch website or call 1-800-FDA-1088.

I rarely have a problem with your posts,  but that’s just plain stupid

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Posted: 25 June 2017 10:56 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 8 ]
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quote author=“Lausten” date=“1498457347”]

Write4U - 25 June 2017 06:16 PM

If modern medicines are so safe through laboratory tests, I wonder why we have this request from the FDA

Report Problems to the Food and Drug Administration
You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit the FDA MedWatch website or call 1-800-FDA-1088.

I rarely have a problem with your posts,  but that’s just plain stupid

Perhaps you misunderstood the point I was trying to make in context of natural medicines having been tested over time for thousands of years.

The encouragement by the FDA, is in fact a long term trial.  Often new medicines (and many other products) are so direly needed that they may be rushed into the market by corporate management, even against the advice of the scientists. Sometimes it may even be a profit oriented competitive matter.
Ever heard of the term “acceptable risk”?

Level of human and/or material injury or loss from an industrial process that is considered to be tolerable by a society or authorities in view of the social, political, and economic cost-benefit analysis.


Moreover as I understand it, budgets for almost all regulatory departments have been cut, resulting in understaffing.

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Posted: 26 June 2017 04:19 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 9 ]
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LoisL - 27 April 2017 09:15 PM

There is only one kind of medicine. “Alternative” medicine is fake medicine. Anything that hasn’t been tested and validated as effective is not medicine.

I agree but alternative sounds more benign than fake so no wonder the supporters choose to use the word.  Think of it this way. How many of us would buy a rump roast if it were called what it is, an ass roast.

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Posted: 26 June 2017 10:07 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 10 ]
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deros - 26 June 2017 04:19 AM
LoisL - 27 April 2017 09:15 PM

There is only one kind of medicine. “Alternative” medicine is fake medicine. Anything that hasn’t been tested and validated as effective is not medicine.

I agree but alternative sounds more benign than fake so no wonder the supporters choose to use the word.  Think of it this way. How many of us would buy a rump roast if it were called what it is, an ass roast.

It’s even more benignly called not “Kosher”

[ Edited: 26 June 2017 01:00 PM by Write4U ]
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Posted: 26 June 2017 04:39 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 11 ]
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I think this thread has gotten misdirected.  The subject was about alternative medicine.  Then someone brought something up about police brutality and marijuana.  I think that is for a different thread.

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Posted: 26 June 2017 08:31 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 12 ]
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Midwestfreethinker - 26 June 2017 04:39 PM

I think this thread has gotten misdirected.  The subject was about alternative medicine.  Then someone brought something up about police brutality and marijuana.  I think that is for a different thread.

Perhaps you missed the point I was trying to make in regard to an alternative medicine with a very bad reputation.

Note that the smell of marijuana was sufficient for the officer to suspect that the driver might be a dangerous addict.

The problem is that in certain states marijuana may be legally prescribed by physicians for relief of some diseases, whereas the FDA still views it as a
Schedule I drug which includes Heroin and a host of other highly addictive (and dangerous) drugs.

Some examples of substances listed in Schedule I are: heroin, lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD), marijuana (cannabis), peyote, methaqualone, and 3,4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine (“Ecstasy”).

It was not posted in context of police violence, but in context of this thread and the claim that all natural (alternative) medicines, some of which have been used for thousands of years by more primitive tribes in underdeveloped countries, are to be avoided at all costs.

To me that sounds like a hasty conclusion. Hopefully you read the rest of my posts, where I tried to caution against such premature judgments.

When there is an absence of modern medicines, what do you expect those people to do, wait until someone opens a clinic and a pharmacy?

If you have read my posts, you will notice that I have no objection to modern medicine, but some 60% of all modern medicines are derived from extracts of naturally occurring medicinal plants.  How did we even discover these medicinal plants without having had some examples of prior uses for thousands of years before modern medicines were developed.

Just ran across this little news article.

FRESNO, Calif. — Regulators in California took a pivotal step on Monday toward becoming the first state to require the popular weed killer Roundup to come with a label warning that it’s known to cause cancer.

Who would have guessed?

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Posted: 17 July 2017 07:02 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 13 ]
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I suppose it depends what you mean by alternative medicine. Acupuncture and chiropractic are covered by health insurance carriers. Apparently some alternative medicine disciplines are becoming mainstream.
A big problem with authenticating alternative treatments is the high cost involved with no guarantee of payback. Drug companies etc. can protect their tested products with patents and thus have guaranteed rights to proven products. US pharmaceutical companies jointly spend more than the U.S. government on medical research. Traditional/alternative medicines cannot be claimed as the intellectual property of anyone who proves they work, so there is little incentive to test them. The government does a little testing through NCCIH, initially called The Office of Alternative Medicine but NIH only allocates about 0.4% of its funding to this endeavor. They must see some value in it though. In the 25 years of its history, the NCCIH budget has grown more than 60-fold from $2 million to $130 million - about 15 times more than the growth of the total NIH budget.
And in the case of marijuana, the government has discouraged research to prove its efficacy.

[ Edited: 17 July 2017 07:08 PM by JohnH ]
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Posted: 17 July 2017 09:44 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 14 ]
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Midwestfreethinker - 24 April 2017 07:29 AM

I think in many cases alternative medicine is safer than conventional medicine.  The problem with alternative medicine is that it has been denied legitimacy by the medical establishment for so long.  Wilhelm Reich is a good example of this.  I think alternative medicine should be covered by insurance the same way other doctors are.  A good way to root out the quacks are to recognize the legitimate ones from the illegitimate ones.  I think that would work well.  One thing I run into time and again is I feel like I have to make the society run without getting paid for it.  This society has a large central government and seems to neglect its people a great deal.  We are the richest country in the world and people often get the impression that the government is “running out of money.”

It is worth mentioning that neglect is an active form of abuse.  If we the people pay taxes and are citizens I think there is an unspoken agreement with the government that they should fulfill certain services to us.  I think the social contract needs to be edited to say the least.

The medical establishment would consider as legitimate any remedy that can be objectively shown to work as claimed. The medical establishment does not “deny” legitimacy. It’s up to the purveyors of remedies to prove their remedies work under laboratory conditions and it should be repeatable. That’s all it would take for any remedy to be accepted by the medical establishment. Why should unproven remedies by paid for by insurance? I certainly don’t want my health insurance premiums going to unproven remedies. Why should unproven remedies by accepted by the medical establishment? The purveyors of remedies have the key to legitimizing their remedies themselves. Prove they work with objective, repeatable evidence. It isn’t up to the medical establishment to legitimize remedies—it’s up to the purveyors of remedies to do that. The burden of proof lies with the person(s) making the claim.

There is no altenative medicine. There is medicine and there are unproven claims. If it hasn’t been proven to work it’s not medicine. It’s an enpty claim. They are a dime a dozen.

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Posted: 17 July 2017 09:45 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 15 ]
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JohnH - 17 July 2017 07:02 PM

I suppose it depends what you mean by alternative medicine. Acupuncture and chiropractic are covered by health insurance carriers. Apparently some alternative medicine disciplines are becoming mainstream.
A big problem with authenticating alternative treatments is the high cost involved with no guarantee of payback. Drug companies etc. can protect their tested products with patents and thus have guaranteed rights to proven products. US pharmaceutical companies jointly spend more than the U.S. government on medical research. Traditional/alternative medicines cannot be claimed as the intellectual property of anyone who proves they work, so there is little incentive to test them. The government does a little testing through NCCIH, initially called The Office of Alternative Medicine but NIH only allocates about 0.4% of its funding to this endeavor. They must see some value in it though. In the 25 years of its history, the NCCIH budget has grown more than 60-fold from $2 million to $130 million - about 15 times more than the growth of the total NIH budget.
And in the case of marijuana, the government has discouraged research to prove its efficacy.

Of course.
It would compete with tobacco and alcohol industries.

But apparently some States have discovered that there is lots of tax moneys to be gained from marijuana sales also.

Ask Nevada, they legalized pot for recreational purposes and promptly ran out of supplies, so they had to buy it from Colorado.

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