Transcending Politics

submitted by jwithrow.
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Journal of a Wayward Philosopher
Transcending Politics

October 20, 2016
Hot Springs, VA

Just as the technology of printing altered and reduced the power of medieval guilds and the social power structure, so too will cryptologic methods fundamentally alter the nature of corporations and of government interference in economic transactions… And just as a seemingly minor invention like barbed wire made possible the fencing-off of vast ranches and farms, thus altering forever the concepts of land and property rights in the frontier West, so too will the seemingly minor discovery out of an arcane branch of mathematics come to be the wire clippers which dismantle the barbed wire around intellectual property. Arise, you have nothing to lose but your barbed wire fences!” – Timothy C. May

The S&P closed out Wednesday at $2,144. Gold closed at $1,270 per ounce. Crude Oil closed at $51.72 per barrel, and the 10-year Treasury rate closed at 1.75%. Bitcoin is trading around $630 per BTC today.

Dear Journal,

Today is little Maddie’s birthday! I still remember, two years ago to the day, witnessing her first breath of life. I can see it in my mind’s eye just a clearly as I see the computer screen in front of me. She has become a fantastically sweet and clever young lady in two years time, and her father’s cup runneth over with pride and joy.

Due to scheduling constraints, we actually celebrated her birthday on Tuesday. A few months back I asked Madison what she wanted to do for her birthday. “I want to ride Leo the horse!”, she responded without hesitation. So that’s exactly what we did. Continue reading “Transcending Politics”

Taking Charge of Your Family’s Natural Wellness

by Andrea Candee – remedies

“Self empowerment” is the buzz word of our time. Yet, many feel disempowered when it comes to the care of their family’s health. Integrated medicine, taking the best of all worlds, is a sensible, responsible approach to healthcare. Here’s more from Andrea Candee, author of Gentle Healing for Baby and Child.

Trying Herbs

Grandparents recognize this as the health care approach of their youth: administer natural remedies at home unless the situation requires more professional help. Perhaps this is why grandparents seem to be the biggest purchasers of books on natural wellness for children, offering it to their adult children for the care of the grandchildren.

Turning to the health food store or even the kitchen pantry, and given a medical diagnosis, a parent educated in medicinal herbs can return a youngster to health or soothe discomfort until seen by the family care provider. And what better way to empower a child about their own wellness than to engage them in their healthcare, creating an awareness that will stay with them for their entire lives. They learn that taking care of their bodies preventatively is every bit as important as consulting a doctor when they are sick.

Statistics indicate that 75 percent of children have at least three ear infections before the age of six. Most of us either have or know a child who repeatedly suffers from what we have tacitly come to accept as a common childhood illness. Doesn’t it make you wonder why, with all the advances of modern medicine, children seem to suffer from ear infections more, rather than less than they did even 20 years ago?

Some children respond well to antibiotics; others are put on a round robin of antibiotic treatments (sometimes for years); and others still require surgery. A study reported in The Journal of the American Medical Association found that children given antibiotics for ear infections were two to six times more likely to develop a recurrence than children who did not receive the antibiotic treatment.

I am not the only one asking the question: What long-term effects do antibiotics have on developing immune systems?

“We found that, in the case of ear infections, sometimes the prescribed medicines created other problems and occasionally didn’t even cure…We have had the opportunity…to observe how effective, gentle and well tolerated these (herbal) remedies are in children.” (Larry Baskind, MD, FAAP, Riverside Pediatrics, Croton on Hudson, NY; excerpted from the foreword of Gentle Healing for Baby and Child [Simon & Schuster] ).

First Signs of Ear Discomfort

I recommend the following courses of action at the earliest signs of ear discomfort:

• Limit the intake of sugar. Processed sugar is a challenge to the body and feeds fungal, parasitic, and bacterial infections. Reduce fruit juice intake by diluting with water. Learn how to use echinacea, an invaluable immune system support found in health food stores, at the first sign of infection. Colds usually wind up in the ears of children predisposed to weakness in this part of their body. If you can prevent a cold from blossoming, you will have prevented another ear infection from developing.

• If a cold does take hold, you may choose to introduce an herbal decongestant.

• Add garlic to your child’s diet. Garlic is naturally anti-bacterial, as well as anti-fungal, anti-viral, and anti-parasitic. A fresh clove can be chopped into mashed potatoes or put on toast with butter.

• If infected fluid has settled in the ear, and there is no perforation of the eardrum (check with your family practitioner to be sure of this) add a drop or two of anti-microbial garlic oil in each ear, along with a drop or two oil of mullein flower. Mullein flower is well known for its anti-inflammatory, decongestant action in the ear. The easiest time to administer ear drops is when a child is sleeping.

• If there is pain in the ear, add a drop or two of St. John’s Wort oil. Its ability to calm nerve sensitivity may help to diminish the discomfort.

• For many children, chiropractic adjustments have been instrumental in preventing recurrent ear infections. If there is a misalignment in the spine affecting nerve and muscle function, chiropractic adjustments could help by enhancing proper drainage and function.

Don’t be afraid to implement all of the above protocols even if your child is on an antibiotic (To maintain the integrity of the intestinal tract, if your child is ever on an antibiotic, be sure to provide your child with a good source of probiotics). When a parent is informed and courageous enough to take charge of the situation, I have seen even the most chronic ear infections turned around—indeed eliminated—from the child’s life.

View article references and author information here:

Ear Infections

Van D. Merkle, DC Says:

1. Become informed about Prevnar vaccine (PCV7), also known as the pneumococcal strep vaccine, or ear-ache vaccine. The literature does not support its use.
2. Avoid ALL dairy products, sugar, and congestive type foods.
3. Try Monolaurin, an immune system enhancer.
4. Echinacea: 3/day. For infants 4 months to 25 lbs use 1 echinacea per day; open the capsule and put in food or water.
5. Chiropractic adjustments have been shown to be of great benefit.

Management of Acute Otitis Media Summary

1. Nearly two thirds of children with uncomplicated ear infections recover from pain and fever within 24 hours of diagnosis without antibiotic treatment. Over 80% recover within 1 to 7 days.
2. More than 5 million cases of acute ear infections occur annually, costing about $3 billion.
3. The report points out that in other countries otitis media is not always treated with drugs at the first sign of infection. Rather, in children over the age of 2 years, the norm is to watch and see how the infection progresses over the course of a few days.
4. The report notes that in the Netherlands the rate of bacterial resistance is about 1%, compared with the US average of around 25%. 1

What Causes Damage to the Ear and/or Ear Infection?

Ear Wax: “During more than 25 years in pediatric medicine, I have never seen a case of permanent hearing loss as a result of ear infection…Parents and doctors can be responsible for injury to the ear canal and the eardrum because of the efforts to remove wax from the ear. It is inadvisable for you or your doctor to use ANY kind of instrument to remove wax forcibly from your child’s ears, even a cotton swab.” – Robert S. Mendelsohn, MD

The best was to remove ear wax is by inserting a few drops of hydrogen peroxide into the ear twice a day for 2 or 3 days. Let the peroxide remain in the ear for several minutes and then rinse the ear with gentle bursts of water from a syringe.

Pacifiers: Pacifier use was found to cause a 40% increased risk of ear infections in infants, as well as higher rates of tooth decay and thrush, according to Dr. Marjo Niemela and associates from the University of Oulu in Finland. Pediatrics September, 2000;106:483–488.

Don’t Drink Your Milk!: Ear specialists frequently insert tubes into the ear drums of infants to treat recurrent ear infections. It has replaced the previously popular tonsillectomy to become the number one surgery in the country. Unfortunately, most of these specialists don’t realize that over 50% of these children will improve and have no further ear infections if they just stop drinking their milk. This is a real tragedy. Not only is the $3,000 spent on the surgery wasted, but there are some recent articles supporting the likelihood that most children who have this procedure will have long-term hearing losses.

“The most common culprit [that causes ear infections] is cow’s milk, in its natural form or as found in infant formula. It causes swelling of the mucous membranes, which interferes with the drainage of secretions through the eustachian tube. Eventually infection results because of the accumulated secretion.” – Robert S. Mendelsohn, MD

What About Antibiotics?

Although more antibiotics are prescribed today for children’s ear infections—and for longer periods of time—in the US than anywhere in the world, several recent, independently financed studies have found that for the vast majority of ear infections, antibiotics are little more effective than no treatment at all.

Experts say the routine use of antibiotics against pediatric ear infections produces little health benefit while contributing to the spread of drug-resistant bacteria, and recurrent ear infection. The article evaluated the results of seven different studies conducted over the past 30 years. They found that while antibiotics were linked to short-term decreases in the duration of pain or fever in patients in a few (but not all) of the studies, no long-term (more than six weeks) benefits are reported. All seven studies concluded that children recovered from ear infections at roughly similar rates, regardless of type of treatment. JAMA November 26,1997;278(20):1643–1645

When Is Tympanostomy (Tubes in the Ears) Justified?

“In all my years of practice I have never seen a case in which a punctured ear drum did not heal itself. The principle justification for the procedure [tympanostomy] is to prevent hearing loss, which is no justification at all. Controlled studies have shown that when both ears are infected, and a tube is inserted in only one of them, the outcome for both ears is almost identical. Meanwhile the procedure itself carries many risks and side effects. Justified as means of preventing hearing loss, tympanostomy can cause scarring and hardening of the eardrum, resulting in hearing loss.” – Robert S. Mendelsohn, MD

Prevnar, Pneumococcal (Strep) Vaccine Does NOT Prevent Ear Infections and Has Major Side Effects

Abstracted from lecture by Erdem Cantekin, PhD, Professor of Otolaryngology at the University of Pittsburgh at the Second International Vaccine Information Center Conference September 9, 2000; Washington DC.

Prevnar is a new vaccine against pneumococcus. This is the most expensive routine vaccine to date. The wholesale cost is about $58.There are over 90 different strains of pneumococcus. The vaccine only has 7 strains assumed to be the common ones, but this is an uniformed experiment at best as there is no way to know if this will be covering all of the strains.

The FDA approval states the drugs is ONLY approved for invasive cases of pneumococcal disease such as bacteremia and meningitis. It is NOT approved for ear infections. This is most peculiar as it is commonly recognized that bacterial meningitis is primarily seen in adults not in infants for which this vaccine is recommended. The HMO trial in which Prevnar was approved had no placebo group. The control group received another experimental vaccine for mennigococcus. This was the ONLY trial that was done to establish the safety and efficacy to recommend this vaccine for every newborn in the US.

Just how well did the vaccine work in the HMO trial? In the first 17 cases of bacteremia it worked perfectly. However it was NOT effective for any cases of ear infections. If Prevnar could have stopped this or even reduced this problem it would have been great. But that is not the case. The FDA data from the HMO trial and that in Finland showed that the prevention benefit is less than 4%. The efficacy claims of Prevnar in ear infections and pneumonia remain unproven.

What About Adverse Side Effects of Prevnar?

The children who received Prevnar in the trial were:

• 4 times more likely to have seizures
• 4 times more likely to have stomach problems

Also, significantly more children who had been given Prevnar developed asthma. There was also one death in the Prevnar group and none in the other. Prevnar also alters the developing immune system. Additionally it will put selective pressure on the pneumococcal strains and has the potential to change the natural pattern of strep infections.

Over one trillion dollars of health care system are under the watchful eyes of the FDA, CDC, and the NIH. These three pillars of our public health care system have become to be more and more controlled by “expert panels” advisory committees. Such experts dictate policy and control the complex biomedical system. They directly influenced taxpayers health and wealth. However there is a huge conflict of interest as most of these experts served the special interest groups who profit in their decision. Many are in financial relationships with various manufacturers and are registered as their paid speakers or as some people might say paid lobbyists.

In Summary…

Ear infections will not cause permanent hearing deficits, and mastoiditis is so rare a condition that most contemporary physicians have never seen a case. Conventional treatment with antibiotics, other drugs and the surgical procedure known as tympanostomy is no more effective than the body’s own defenses in dealing with the problem.

Dr. Robert S. Mendelsohn’s Recommendations for Earache

1. Wait 48 hours before you call your physician.
2. Relieve the pain with a heating pad, two drop of heated olive oil (not hot) inserted in the ear canal, and the appropriate dose of acetaminophen if the pain becomes unbearable.
3. If the pain persists after 48 hours, see a doctor—not to treat infection, if that’s what it proves to be, but to rule out the possibility of trauma or the presence of a foreign body.
4. Don’t allow your doctor to use an instrument to remove wax from your child’s ear, and don’t try to do it yourself.
5. If your doctor examines your child and finds a viral or bacterial infection, question the need for antibiotic use. If he finds a foreign body, let him remove it, but again question the need for antibiotic use. If your child has a self-inflicted injury to the eardrum, your pediatrician may refer you to an ear and throat specialist. Be suspicious and question the need if he recommends surgical treatment or antibiotics. In all my years of experience I have never seen a case in which either was necessary.
6. If your child has chronic, recurrent middle ear infection, it is probably because of allergies or the antibiotics he was previously given. If your doctor recommends tympanostomy, don’t permit it without obtaining a second opinion. This procedure has replaced tonsillectomy as the favorite of pediatricians, but there is no reliable scientific evidence that it will do any good, and there’s considerable evidence that it may cause further harm.

Article originally posted at

Rethinking Modern Medicine’s Germ Theory

by Daniel A. Middleton, DC – ICPA:germ theory

The germ theory states that diseases are due to specific microorganisms, which are capable of transmission from body to body. Yet although it is widely accepted by medical professionals, forming the basis for billions of dollars of healthcare spending (actually sickness care, but that’s another article), the fact that so many people believe it to be true doesn’t make it so. This is one of the classic logical fallacies: argumentum ad populum, the appeal to the majority, where a thing is stated to be true simply because so many people believe it.

That didn’t work for the belief that the earth was flat, and it shouldn’t work for a theory of disease that is increasingly coming under fire from the scientific community and whose fundamental premise was known to be flawed almost from the beginning. I am reminded of the famous quote by Anatole France: “If fifty million people say a foolish thing, it is still a foolish thing.”

Everyone has heard of the Black Plague that swept through Europe in the Middle Ages, resulting in the death of nearly a third of the European population (25 million people dead over the five-year period between 1347 and 1352). What is most interesting, however, is the other two-thirds—the ones who didn’t die. Many times the survivors were members of the same family as the victims, sharing a home and meals across the same family table. What about them—why didn’t they ‘catch’ the disease? Were they just lucky?

I’m not denying that the disease itself existed; it’s well-documented. The Bubonic Plague, associated with the bacterium named Versenia pestis, was one of the deadliest pandemics in human history—and one of the most studied. Instead, my argument is against the ‘germ theory of disease’ itself, the overriding idea in many people’s minds that exposure to a germ almost always equals disease, when common sense tells us that this simply is not the case.

The germ (or virus or bacteria) might well be the agent of disease, but the cause is much more complex than that. Otherwise, as chiropractic pioneer B.J. Palmer said, eventually no one would be alive to tell you about it! If our bodies can be kept whole and healthy, then the germs, which we come into contact with every day, would have no purchase. One of the goals of chiropractic is to have your body function at such a level that you don’t get sick very often—and that when you do, your immune system, stronger because of more efficient body-brain communication, is better able to fight off the disease, letting you recover more quickly.

Chiropractic is a vitalistic way of looking at our ideas of health and wellness, of how we get sick and why. Very often, it’s at odds with the predominant (mechanistic) model of health that everyone is used to. With the number of drug ads on television and in magazines, and news shows touting the latest medical advancement to treat this or that disease (many of which show up later with unpredicted—maybe even unpredictable—side effects or problems) and the countless TV shows idolizing medicine (e.g. House, ER, Grey’s Anatomy, Nip/Tuck, etc.) all the way back to the early days of television (City Hospital and The Doctor first appeared back in 1951, with the more well-known and iconoclastic Dr. Kildare and Ben Casey showing up ten years later).

Is it any wonder that we all grew up believing in the medical model of health care? After all, surely we could trust Robert Young’s kindly and grandfatherly Marcus Welby, M.D. In fact, we trusted him so much that Young made a subsequent commercial for a popular pain reliever (“I’m not a doctor, but I play one on TV…”) that became a well-worn cliché. But what if the foundation on which the entire medical model rests is flawed? What if the “germ theory of disease” is not quite so cut and dried as we’ve been led to believe? Highly controversial when it was first proposed, the germ theory is now the cornerstone of modern medicine, and its chief proponent, Louis Pasteur, a demigod in the medical canon. But is what we remember Pasteur for the last he said on the subject?

Everyone is familiar with Pasteur’s name, but one of his contemporaries and chief opponents was a scientist named Claude Bernard (1813–1878), who argued that it was not the ‘seed’ (the germ) that caused disease, but was instead the ‘soil’ (the human body). Bernard argued that germs are nothing more than opportunistic organisms. It was an argument that persisted throughout their careers, and for his entire life Pasteur was convinced that germs lay at the cause of all disease. Only on his deathbed—with Claude Bernard present—did Pasteur finally admit that Bernard was right. In the end, Pasteur came to realize that the germ was not the only element in determining who became sick and who remained well.

What this tells us is that modern medicine (or Big Pharma, as the pharmaceutical companies with revenues exceeding $3 billion are often called) has based its fundamental premise on a theory that even its most well-known proponent—as Pasteur arguably was—recanted in the end. For the past one hundred years, modern medicine has pursued a theory that is, at best, only a single aspect of the cause of disease and, at worst, a theory flawed at its core.

How much better spent would our health dollars be—in treatment, education and research—if they supported instead research into how to make the “soil” less hospitable to the “seed,” rather than chasing cures and potions for every collection of symptoms that can be named? Just as in a court of law deathbed confessions are given an extra weight, so too should we regard Pasteur’s final comment on his most famous theory: “Bernard avait raison. Le germ n’est rien, c’est le terrain qui est tout.” (“Bernard was right. The seed is nothing, the soil is everything.”)

Article originally posted at

Preventative Care

submitted by jwithrow.Spa

Journal of a Wayward Philosopher
Preventative Care

November 12, 2014
Hot Springs, VA

The S&P opened at $2,028. Gold, starting to recover from its recent mugging, is up to $1,165. Oil is down to $77.25 and contemplating testing its support level. Bitcoin is up to $396 per BTC, and the 10-year Treasury rate opened at 2.34%.

Precious metals are still the asset class that most warrants your attention in the financial markets today. The U.S. mint sold 5.8 million ounces of silver in October which was a 40% increase from September sales. The Mint then started the month of November off by selling another 1.3 million ounces.

Then it ran out of silver to sell.

But guess what happened to the price of silver? It dropped from $19.50 per ounce on September 1 to $15.72 per ounce as the closing bell rang yesterday. Concurrently, the gold forward rate has just gone negative for the sixth time in fourteen years which suggests the market is pricing for a physical gold shortage. Despite this, the price of gold has been systematically beaten down in 2014 as well. What was that old saying about supply and demand?

Both gold and silver will probably flop around a bit for a while longer but ten years from now you will look quite wise if you allocate some of your capital to precious metals at the current prices.

Shifting gears to continue with our recent health care theme…

Last week we pondered a new model for health care based on cash payments for personalized service in order to opt out of the big-government/big-insurance/big-pharma cartel. We reckoned such a model would be similar to the free market model of a bygone era where family doctors had the freedom to offer personalized service to patients without having to worry about an avalanche of insurance paperwork needing to be complied with or a legion of attorneys hiding in the bushes outside looking for a malpractice lawsuit. We also reckoned there will be a small but growing number of health care professionals willing to offer personalized service for cash as the health insurance industry in the U.S. continues to spiral down into a sinkhole of bureaucracy.

What we didn’t ponder last week was how to afford a cash-based model and keep the insurance company in the waiting room unless an emergency occurs. The answer is simple: preventative care.

No, not the preventative care where you run to the specialist and sign up for the latest and greatest test or screening every time you think you might have sniffled in your sleep the night before. We mean the preventative care where you actually take responsibility for your own health and wellness.

The general guidelines are really pretty intuitive: get a good night’s sleep, stay active during the day even if you work behind a desk, walk as much as possible, eat real food and avoid the fake food that comes packaged in boxes and bags, drink plenty of water and not much soda, consider natural supplements and stay away from pharmaceutical drugs, reject stress and negativity, and maintain a positive state of mind.

Do these things consistently and you probably won’t ever get sick. And if you don’t get sick you won’t feel the need to go to the doctor – not even for checkups if you trust yourself implicitly. Then you could take the money you would have spent on doctor visits and prescription drugs and work on your asset allocation model.

Of course it is still advisable to maintain a wellness network. There are plenty of people and groups out there in cyberspace discussing natural health topics and answering each other’s questions at any given time of day. Though I gave it up years ago, I understand there are plenty of active Facebook groups in this space also.

Wife Rachel and I are big fans of routine chiropractic care as well. Instead of pushing a pill for every ill, chiropractors embrace a more holistic approach to wellness by focusing on musculoskeltal health to ensure optimal functionality of the nervous system. We found chiropractic care to be an especially important part of Rachel’s prenatal and postpartum wellness and it is an excellent tool to monitor the development of little Madison’s nervous system. You know how the pediatrician taps infants on the knee with the little hammer tool? Chiropractors do that too along with numerous other more advanced bio-mechanical and reactionary measurements.

Fortunately for the sake of this journal entry, many chiropractors operate on a cash-only basis. That is, they do not deal with insurance companies (they will accept credit cards). This eliminates the extra costs associated with insurance paperwork and compliance which means lower prices for clients. Some insurance policies may cover chiropractic care but it would be up to the client to file for reimbursement in that case. Ask the chiropractor whether or not his services are covered by insurance and he will probably say “I don’t know” and explain that your insurance policy is a private contract between you and the insurance company and has nothing to do with him (or her). How refreshing to know there is still a sliver of honesty and respectability left in the health care field!

With the proper mindset, preventative care is really quite easy so why do most people ignore it? One cannot know for certain but I suspect propagated fear has a lot to do with it. We’ll save that for a later entry…

More to come,






Joe Withrow
Wayward Philosopher

For more of Joe’s thoughts on the “Great Reset” and regaining individual sovereignty please read “The Individual is Rising” which is available at The book is also available on Amazon in both paperback and Kindle editions.