I wrote an article for hpathy in February 2010 titled First They Came For The Homeopaths…. As healers we have a tendency to believe that it is an innate human quality to want to help others and certainly my own definition of health includes that aspect (altruism, cooperation and the ability to adapt to change). When we witness people, groups or governments behaving in ways that harm others, directly or indirectly, we can’t help but imagine the constitutional prescription they need. Indeed I’ve had many ‘fun’ times as a teacher analyzing the case of Hitler or GWB and contemplating how history might have been different if they had had some good constitutional prescribing. As a teacher I suggest that knowing material medica makes us more tolerant. I ask students faced with difficult people or situations to rise above their immediate emotional kneejerk and see the deeper picture of the other’s pain.
At this point in our homeopathic history though, we need to recognize the reality of what is going on in the world and how it affects us and our future.
Which brings me to investigative writer Martin Walker’s latest book Dirty Medicine: The Handbook (DMTH). It’s the follow up to Martin’s seminal work Dirty Medicine: Science big business and the assault on natural health care, first published in 1993. In his first book Martin exposed the pharmaceutical industry as the hydra headed monster it was, more than a decade before most of the CAM community started waking up.
In the years since that book, a whole new layer has been pasted carefully over the cracks by slick PR companies, practicing the new profession of ‘risk management’. PR companies are paid a high price to package unpalatable facts for public consumption under the banner of “protecting the public.”
Witness the recent EU directives on nutritional supplements and herbal medicines, already gutting the shelves of health stores in the name of protecting the public. Only the pharmaceutical industry will be allowed to manufacture standardized (read synthetic) products. Only they will be able to afford the costly licenses per product to bring them to market. Witness the Food Safety Bill passed last year in the US Congress, with language so vague it allows the widest of interpretations by the FDA’s enforcing officers. That legislation is already being used to target raw food sales and promoting the ‘safety’ of processed food. (Cargill’s recent recall of 39 million pounds of ground turkey contaminated with Salmonella is only one example of the irony of this suggestion.)
This erosion of individual freedom to choose our food (organic, Non-GMO) how we prefer to take care of health (all CAMs and CAM products) and many other aspects of our lives are being handed over to industry.
You may recognize the ‘protecting the public’ line in the many tentacles of the anti-homeopathy campaign running in the UK and reaching out now to embrace the EU, the US and Canada, Australia, New Zealand and beyond. “Protection of the gullible public from the delusional homeopaths”. These anti-homeopathy campaigners are smart. They use official bodies to give them authority, they are well organized and they plan far ahead. The farce of the UK Parliamentary Science and Technology committee investigation into homeopathy is now being used as the “most recent investigation into whether homeopathy works or not”. The fact that only ONE MP who attended the hearings voted to ratify the report does not deter other officials from citing it as an example of the “scientific consensus”. (If you want to see the machinations of the UK government in action, this blog is a good read: www.vonsyhomeopathy.wordpress.com)
Now that bastion of British culture, the publicly funded BBC chose a moment during the recent Murdoch madness, to issue a statement about an ‘independent’ report they had commissioned last year. Professor Steve Jones concluded that on issues of impartiality it was important on matters of science to present the “consensus” view. He suggested there was no longer any need to present “minority opinions” on a particular issue in order to “avoid confusing the public” and advocated that this should be written into the BBC guidelines for program makers. In effect he suggested writing directly into the guidelines the NEED to be PARTIAL about science on matters such as GMO, MMR, organic food, nutritional supplements, herbal medicine and other CAMs and of course homeopathy – despite it still being (at least for now) an integral part of the NHS.
Why don’t we feel reassured knowing all these factions are busy protecting us!?
Which brings me back to Martin Walker’s book – DMTH. It’s a superb analysis of the situation in the UK – it shows just how orchestrated the anti-homeopathy campaign is and who is involved. It goes right to the heart of government, the media, the educational system. It names the players, the committees, the organizations, the networks, the back room people and the front men and women who provide a distraction and tie up resources while the bricks are put in the wall.
Many of the names will be new to you. Don’t be fooled into thinking small players like Tracy Brown (Managing Director of Sense About Science) or the Amazing Randi are anything more than a sideshow.
Although Martin focuses on natural medicine in the UK and on homeopathy in particular, the same process is going on within the European Union and in the US, Canada and now it’s gaining steam in Australia.
The UK anti-homeopathy campaign provides the validity and gravitas to the argument. Shang “proved” that homeopathy is nothing more than placebo, and since his views were published in The Lancet, they must be true. The UK parliamentary Science and Technology Committee report is actively being used to persuade other governments to get rid of homeopathy.
Now the Nightingale Collaboration, an offshoot of Sense About Science, is using the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) to go after homeopathic websites and the ASA cites the Science and Technology Committee report as the “most recent investigation into the evidence for homeopathy” and concurs with their conclusion.
This tactic applies equally well to other issues: nutritional supplements, herbal medicines, GM food, organic food and so on. The players may be slightly different, but the process is the same and involves your government, which is now nothing more than a lobbyist for the corporations who got them elected, the media that is owned by the corporations, the scientific journals controlled by the pharmaceutical industry and so on.
Do we still live in a democracy? It’s hard to say yes, when you see just how deep the corporations are embedded in the very fabric of our society. There is virtually no independent scientific research anymore. Indeed, what is considered ‘science’ has itself been redefined.
Martin Walker is one of CAMs best investigative writers. He works tirelessly and mostly unpaid for the things he believes in. On his own expense he attended every session of the General Medical Council’s three year trial of Dr. Andrew Wakefield and edited the Silent Witness series of books – stories written by the parents of children with autism. You can see his work in this area on http://www.cryshame.com.
DMTH is essential reading. Every homeopath and CAM practitioner needs to read it and understand the truth behind the spin. It will enable you to read between the lines of what is done in your name and wake you up to proposed changes before they become law. It will enable you to begin to formulate a strategy to protect what you hold dear, at its most fundamental, the freedom to make decisions about how you take care of your own health and that of your family.
This is not some futuristic possibility, it’s already happening today, right where you are. Without a major shift in global power structure, this is already on its way to your doorstep courtesy of Codex Alimentarius and the World Trade Organization.
Resist at all cost. Get Martin’s book so you are already informed. Go to Martin’s website and check out his other fully referenced works. Many of his smaller publications are free. Make a small donation in return. We need to support him so he can continue his work. In these days of spin, investigative writers who do their job as it’s meant to be done are priceless. Facebook it, Twitter it, pass it on.
The Website : http://www.slingshotpublications.com