As it happens, I do not know whether my editions of Hazlitt's books and
essays, such as yesterday's "On wit and
humour" please many, and suspect not.
Hardly any Dutchman has heard of him, and
I'd guess the same applies to most Brits and Americans: He just thought
too well and wrote too well to be of interest to the vast majority,
academically educated or not, and indeed he wrote no fiction, but
almost only essays, while most people who read literature want fiction
(aka 'sophistry and illusions'), to pass through the day or get relief
from everyday boringness.
Then again, my sites are not intended for
mass consumption, and if I had wanted to please many, I should have
made a quite different site, written in a different style, and with
quite different subjects.
And besides, another reason why I did put
another essay of Hazlitt on
my site is to get some relief from the horrible nonsense in horrible
prose that I spent so much time and space and energy on, the last two
years, because the horrible nonsense I dutifully read and then
write about relates to ME/CFS, to the DSM-5, to patients forums, and to
more such things - which really are all things I much rather would not
write about, and indeed may write considerably less about, since what I
write doesn't seem to make much of a difference to others, and all it
seems to result in for me, just as it did in the University of
Amsterdam, when I publicly
spoke the truth about the degeneracy of Dutch education, in
my being sorely discriminated and grossly abused. Seeing things
as they probably are and having the courage to speak up in public are
only applauded if what you say is what most believe anyway.
Anyway... here are four brief items that
relate to ME/CFS
1. Planned research
2. The X-Rx site
3. The Whittemores
4. My mB12-protocol
1. Planned research
There is a recent article by Cort Johnson
on Phoenix Rising with this title
Studies Target New Areas In ME/CFS
which indeed is about what the title
says. Here is its first paragraph
The CFIDS Association of America (CAA)
released a list $2 million dollars worth of new CAA funded studies last
week. There's something of a 'gestalt' to a CAA study; the CAA likes to
fund studies that gather enormous amounts of information and then use
data mining techniques to ferret out new patterns, they like to 'smush'
researchers in different fields together to paint a big picture of CFS,
they're very high on finding treatments and they want results quickly.
This sounds like astroturf to me:
"something of a 'gestalt'" (what hasn't, o wise be-ing Cort?); "data mining
techniques" (already all the rage when I studied, 30 years ago, then
called "meta-analysis": throw heaps of journals in a statistical
torture machine and hope something (statistically) significant pops
out); "'smush'" (does that need sex tools, or what?); "paint a big
picture" (how about detailed causal explanations?), "very high" (there
are places in Amsterdam where people can get in that state), and more.
Then again, I suppose Cort Johnson wanted
to write an upbeat article and it is also true he is not addressing "a
community" of scientifically qualified folks, even if many of his
members like to falsely pretend otherwise (^)
- which is one of the main reasons anonymous patients' forums are
totally useless for trying to get rational plans realized, or indeed
for having any rational discussion of any - there and then -
The few intelligent and informed, in my
experience, always have been demoted by the gross, the stupid, the
impolite, the liars, and/or by a whole horde of trolls or wingnuts,
pretending or believing they are ill patients, and all totally
anonymous as a matter of course.
Besides, I don't want to waste what
remains from my life on public discussions with anonymous shits who
write loads of bullshit and start getting extremely nasty if one calls
their sick bluff or simply inquires what degrees they have.
So... because I don't like the breathless
upbeat style, though I do presume Cort means well, I have only skimmed
the article, that reports five studies financed (in part, I suppose) by
those $ 2 million from the CAA. For what I saw of it, most of the
studies do seem worth doing and may produce interesting results.
If you want to know more, and don't mind
upbeat prose in the US style, you can use the above link.
2. The X-Rx site
Dr. Deckoff-Jones - a US MD with ME/CFS,
and a daughter similarly afflicted - does seem to have her new site
going now, and it now has a blog and a forum. Her latest blog has the
following title, that's also a link:
Report: Two years on retrovirals
This starts with two paragraphs about the
Whittemores and Judy Mikovits Ph.D., who is a friend of dr.
Deckoff-Jones, but indeed is mostly about what the title says.
The brief summary is that dr.
Deckoff-Jones still thinks as she did before, lists what she takes, and
says that she and her daughter are still improving.
It seems likely to me that dr.
Deckoff-Jones and dr. Mikovits are mistaken about XMRV, but it does not
at all seem impossible to me that some patients with the diagnosis of
ME/CFS have something else.
In fact, I
think that's likely to be true of a considerable group, but then
again Wessely, White, Reeves and co. have for nearly 25 years now been
screwing the scientific definitions, criterions and biomedical real
science with a will, and consequently there is still no really useful
diagnostic instrument in general medical use, and patients with what
looks like ME/CFS on e.g. the Canada-criterions are "treated" with
psychobabble and refusals to get tested for real diseases.
So the ill Deckoff-Joneses may well be
ill with a virus of some kind, and the same applies to others. Then
again, I don't think it is XMRV or HGRV, based on what I've read about
these, while things may soon be clarified at least a little when the
Lipkin-study gets published, that's supposed to be finished this month.
Also, if she and her daughter are still
being helped, in their estimate, by what they take, one can understand
- especially if one has ME/CFS for a long time - why they keep
believing and keep taking their medicines.
There also is a X-Rx-forum now, of which I can see
2 sections, and from which I gleaned there now are 108 members. (I am
not one of them, and it is very unlikely I will be if the members are
the same as I saw on other forums. No way I am going to congregate with
a community with monstrous and disgusting folks like Bob and V99 and
their ilk, admirers and friends: I do not have the required stupidity
or ignorance, and I am not a masochist. I am willing to debate this
manner of sick asshole gladly any day, but not if the terms are that
folks as sickening, sadistic and dishonest as these are, may vomit
their filth anonymously while being protected by an owner or
moderator of a forum. And I do suspect that quite a few who have run
into Bob or V99, or just read their prose, and who are themselves
scientifically qualified, will shun dr. Deckoff-Jones site for that
reason. That may be a pity, but these are truly nauseous nuts, and as
long as one can't find their real names to take them down publicly, as
they deserve, they will continue to abuse their betters, with fond
pervy dedication also.)
3. The Whittemores
From what I was sent by e-mail, it seems
the Whittemores are in more trouble. I only provide the link, the
title, and the author, who is Martha Bellisle, quoted in my me+ME:
Mikovits vs Whittemores vs Deckoff-Jones of seven days ago:
It is dated 6 March 2012, and is in the Reno
Gazette Journal (which sounds a bit strange to my French reading
person - see Wikipedia's Gazette:
"A gazette is a public journal, a newspaper of record, or simply a
newspaper.") but then again one of the few nice things about the
story is that the folks in Nevada use what seem - to me - quaint but
sometimes quite amusing terms.
4. My mB12-protocol
I wrote last about it in January:
me+ME: Whittemores in court +
and it's more of the same: It still seems
to help; it's quite probable, by now, that the problems I ran into with
it were due to my taking not enough Potassium aka Kalium
(Wikipedia link: useful if you take it or consider taking it), and I am
taking a lot more, and am doing better on it.
Another (it seems: fairly common) problem
I may have run into with the mB12 protocol is with folic acid: Both the
B-supplements and the multi-vitamine supplement I take contain folic
acid, that is said to interfere with Metafolate, that I also took, as
part of the protocol, but that seemed to have unpleasant consequences
for me, such as a stuffed brain.
It turns out that it seems to help if I
take it on alternate days: One with metafolate but no folic acid
containing supplements, one with those supplements but without
So I am still going on with the protocol,
but somewhat modified as I said above. In brief: It does help me some,
which is quite nice; I have verified that some of the things I read
about the protocol on Phoenix Forums (where there are several threads
on it) do hold in my case, which also is nice, for I like to have (at
least) probabilistic confirmations while experimenting with my health (*); and my main problem with the protocol is lack
of sufficient relevant knowledge that would explain why and how it does
But then everyone with ME/CFS would like
to know that, and there also are some decent explanations, in the note
that follows, in the link at the end.
(*) As to "the placebo-effect": I
don't much believe in it, mostly because it is a methodologically
tricky concept, and not because I do think people cannot convince
themselves of falsehoods. To illustrate: Many diseases just go away, if
they don't kill, or vary in intensity, for many different reasons, so
what might be explained by "the placebo-effect" may be just Nature
working her miracles, while the doctors sends in his bills. More
specifically, I have used many supplements that came with many
promises, and the usual result was that it made no difference
whatsoever to me, so far as I could tell, except financially. Also, I
have been experimenting with B12 now for over a year, and with the
protocol for more than half a year, and I am pretty certain it does
help some, though I cannot provide good, specific, scientific
explanations, other than the general methylation cycle block theory
that seems best explained - from what I have seen - by Rich van
Konynenburg Ph.D. Here is a link to a good 7-part survey of his theory
on Phoenix Rising:
Documents by Rich Van Konynenburg: Parts 1-7
This is well done, and also comes with
quite a lot of scientific references.
(^) As it happens, I
am the only patient with ME/CFS, that I know of, who did say, from
October 2009 onwards, that he did not have the sort of knowledge or
education to rationally weigh the XMRV-story on its retrovirological
merits, and did not wish to read up on it either, because I am ill and
it never was in any of my fields of interest.