Tuesday, March 10, 2009
What's Wrong With These People
Adjuvant - a substance admixed with an immunogen in order to elicit a more marked immune response.
At some point in the past, mercury arrived in the Caribbean, and as a result, American doctors still believe in injecting it into humans.
One likely progression goes like this.
The Spanish explorer Christopher Columbus left Europe, found the Gulf Stream favorable, and journeyed southward.
History records he landed and claimed Hispaniola in the Caribbean for the Spanish crown on December 5th, 1492.
Over many years Spain followed the trail of precious metals from the Caribbean islands to Central and South America.
Some time in the 1550s, Bartolomé Medina, while living in Mexico, developed the patio process [mercury amalgamation] into an industrial-scale operation.
Medina's discovery made it easier for Spanish colony mines to extract silver from ore. One thing, the patio process required lots of mercury to produce silver.
Soon the plentiful quantities of mercury necessary for the patio process came from the Almaden mines, down the Gulf Stream aboard Spanish vessels, through the Caribbean, and onto South American silver mines.
One estimate, using old shipping documents, suggests the total amount of mercury sent from Spain to South America between 1570 and 1900 was 196,000 tons, or about half of all primary mercury mined during that historical period.
One day, while on the way from Spain to Mexico with a load of mercury, some sailors on a galleon caught a whiff of something tasty drifting over the briny. Through a spyglass the captain saw somebody, mostly naked, cooking on the Haiti side of Hispaniola.
They came ashore and traded with an African witch doctor, who was just over from Morocco to provide the annual check-ups for the islanders. A cask of mercury for enough barbecue sandwiches for the whole crew.
The witch doctor was immediately attracted to the silvery liquid. He screwed around with the mercury and soon began dancing around ritualistically. He was soon mad as a hatter, and another witch doctor replaced him.
Later the English colonies became neighbors of the Caribbean. The Spanish mercury merchants offered a few colonial doctors a company junket to the islands, promising them the great expedition would include lots of free barbecue for the wife and kids, and for their practices, an unforgettable demonstration of mercury medicine.
Over many years, more and more colonial doctors made the trip without the family not to see half-naked women with chicken bones protruding through their nostrils being eaten by the village, and, of course, the mercurial witch doctors do their stuff, too.
Being much smarter than their voodoo witch doctor contemporaries, the Americans soon figured out how it all worked.
Apparently, one saw a voodoo witch doctor cupping a piece of dripping goat bladder in his hand just before he pretended to reach into the stomach of a sick person to pull out the 'evil spirit' troubling their constitutional. The Haitian mercury practitioner was busted. All the way, busted.
However, the American colonial doctors were mystified by the fact that some of the witch doctor's patients actually were sick and actually got better. They concluded "it's got to be the mercury".
Soon the colonial healing artists, already experts with leeches, blistering, and blood-letting began to practice more and more with quicksilver. They began feeding mercury fearlessly, knowing nobody would ever suspect mercury could cause neurological disorder.
Perhaps it takes a voodoo witch doctor to account for the fact that after draining his body of six pints of blood, America's founding father George Washington was then fed 'heroic' doses of mercury.
Just like the voodoo witch doctor, the colonial American doctors became true voodoo believers. Mercury, they believed, was necessary for human survival in pretty much the same way the Incas concluded crushing the skulls of infant sacrifices assured that rains would come and produce a bountiful harvest.
American medicine has never been the same.
Today, just try to ban Thimerosal. The emotional charge against you is overwhelmingly telling they still don't get it about mercury...they just think they do.