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Saturday, December 29, 2007

TRUTH ABOUT THE AFRICAN AIDS PROBLEM

TRUTH ABOUT THE AFRICAN AIDS PROBLEM

There is little doubt that aids infection is rapidly spreading throughout Africa. Many countries and individuals have donated time, resources, and millions and millions of dollars to solve the problems of so many infected people. We feel sorry for those individuals, especially the children, so many of whom are orphaned because their parents have died of the disease.

But, we are completely unable to stop the spread of the disease. Aids is spread by several ways. One of the major ways in the US is the sharing of contaminated needles by drug users. Of course, the main way is via practicing sex by anal intercourse. This is probably the way it was spread during the early phases of spread of the disease, especially among the gay population. Initially heterosexual penis-vaginal sexual spread was rare. But strains of the aids virus have emerged which are now contributing to heterosexual spread. The reason why penis-anal sex results in transmission of aids is because employing this sexual method causes minor tears in the rectal area. The aids virus is not a hardy virus and cannot survive external elements. Fresh blood contact is required for easy transmission. Bleeding gums can be a potential method of transmission in the case of oral sex.

It must be realized that anal sex is still probably the chief method of transmission especially in Africa. The World Health Organization has recognized this problem but has been powerless in educating Africans about ceasing the sexual practices which result in aids. Anal sex is quite common in Africa not only between adult-adult sexual contact, but also among adult-children contact. It is a sad state of affairs, but it is the reality in many parts of Africa.

AIDS WILL EVENTUALLY BE THE BLACK PLAGUE OF MODERN TIMES. The incidence of aids has continued to rise since it first appeared upon the scene. Although medicines have kept people alive, some a few years, others for longer periods of time, it will never be the cure. Once in awhile there are apparent spontaneous cures, but these are rare when we consider the totality of those infected. Luckily, the virus requires very close contact of mucosal tissues as in the case of sexual contact. And herein lies the secret to control of the spread of the disease.

Since Aids cannot be cured, it must, therefore, be prevented. Individuals must cease anal sex or use condoms which provide a physical barrier between mucosal tissue contact. Education of the masses to change a common behavior will be very difficult . In my experience, education of the masses has never been an effective means of control of any disease. Historically, most infectious and contagious diseases have been controlled by instituting good public health practices. In the early part of the past century, the enteric diseases, such as the dysenteries, cholera, and salmonella, were eliminated by separating the water supply from sewage. Tuberculosis was prevented by insuring that the herds of cattle were clean of TB because the major spread of TB in the US was due to drinking contaminated milk. Isolation of TB infected individuals was another very effective means of control. Later with the advent of antibiotics, such as streptomycin and isoniazid, we had a method of treatment. Let us not forget that TB was once considered the “White Plague” and it killed many people, among which were probably Mozart and Chopin. It spread through Europe and led to the creation of the Sanitarium where many infected individuals went to rest which was the only method known whereby people could cure themselves.

In the early to mid 20th Century vaccines were developed for those diseases amenable to such an approach: the bacterial infections of tetanus, whopping cough, diphtheria; the viral infections of polio, measles, mumps, German Measles, etc.

There were still other diseases where good public health measures aided in control of the disease. I remember in the 1950's and 60's when a person was diagnosed with syphilis, public health officials would painstakingly seek out all contacts of an infected individual to put them on penicillin treatment. The key to the prevention of many diseases was to isolate the infected carrier away from the uninfected population. At one time, even drastic measures were taken by public health officials to isolate a carrier. One only has to think about the eventual fate of the infamous Typhoid Mary. Mary Mallon used to work as a food handler in NYC restaurants. There were several outbreaks of Typhoid Fever attributed to Mary because she was a Typhoid carrier. She was ordered not to work as a food handler. But more small Typhoid breakouts occurred and Mary was found to be the culprit. There were many deaths from typhoid fever. Since Mary continued to ignore the public health officials Mary was confined to the NY City prison where she eventually died. BUT, this will not happen with Aids. Why?

Because Aids has entered the political sphere, and when something enters the political arena, science and common sense goes out the window. One only has to think of the global warming debate to appreciate this. The political sphere is akin the an economist who states that on the one hand this is the case but on the other hand that is the case. This prompted President Truman to quip that he would like to have a one armed economist. The political sphere is controlled by lawyers and lawyer-types who will argue both sides of an issue even when there is only one side.

Isolation of a carrier has been an time-honored method for the control of the spread of contagious diseases. Aids will NEVER be controlled or eliminated unless either the carrier is isolated by the carrier practicing so called “safe sex” or the carrier is removed from the susceptible population. We have tried to educate the aids carrier to practice safe sex and it has worked minimally in an educated population. This is further complicated by the spread of the disease through contaminated needles. In Africa education has not worked because the low level of education and understanding precludes such an approach.

Aids will continue to be the scourge of modern times and eventually will do such havoc that we will be forced to institute more drastic control measures. The virus is a very smart virus. It essentially infects the very cell needed to develop an immunity to the disease. Additionally, as the virus exits the cell it takes a part of the individual’s cell membrane with it so the body is unable to recognize it as foreign. The virus eventually wins out in the battle between it and the body to survive.

In my opinion, an aids vaccine most likely will not work. Not all infectious agents are amenable to vaccine treatment and protection.

The African aids problem will continue to be a problem of enormous magnitude. The virus has found a population where it is winning the battle for survival and will continue to do so for many years to come.

nicola michael c. Tauraso, M.D.
Director, Tauraso Medical Clinic
www.drtauraso.com

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Friday, December 28, 2007

THE TROUBLE WITH THE MUSLIM RELIGION

THE TROUBLE WITH THE MUSLIM RELIGION

I wrote a small bit on this topic before. Although there is much violence in the Koran, one might say there is also considerable violence in the Old Testament. There is little or no violence in the New Testament because most of what is there is influenced by the teachings of Jesus Christ, who preached love, tolerance and peace as do some of the Far Eastern Religions such as Buddhism.

We can study history to know that although the New Testament teaches love and peace, there were times in the Catholic Church when love and peace were not practiced. If we just consider the brief time when the Inquisition was underway, when individuals were killed because they were believed to have deviated from the teachings of the Church. Although the Church was guided by the teachings of the New Testament, the church leaders were not. The Church was ruled by tyrants who acted similar to many Muslim clerics in power today.

How often do we hear a Muslim cleric teaching that if you are a suicide bomber you will not be rewarded with 70 virgins in heaven? There would not be any suicide bombers if the potential bomber realized there would be NO rewards to his actions. But the Mullahs are silent on this issue. Why? Do the moderate Mullahs fear retribution from the more radical among them, or do they really believe the myth of the virgin reward? We do not know the answer. Unless the Mullahs change what they preach the suicide bombers will continue, mark m word. We must also consider that the Koran delineates the virgin rewards to someone who dies defending the faith.

Another very serious problem with the Muslim religion is the fact that each Mullah cleric is free to interpret the Koran as he sees fit. This is different, especially with the Catholic religion of which I know more. In the Catholic religion, although Bishops are the ultimate authority in interpreting the Bible, they are guided by what the Pope says, Bishops do not have to follow what the Pope dictates. The only time Bishops must follow what the Pope says is when the Pope speaks ex cathedra, that is, when the Pope says he has had a direct communication from God. This occurs very rarely. The last time the Pope spoke ex cathedra occurred in 1950. Invocations of the Pope's Solemn (or "Extraordinary") Magisterium are rare. Since 1870 only one statement exercising the Solemn Magisterium has been made, Pope Pius XII's dogma on the "Assumption of the Virgin Mary into Heaven" in 1950. The Papacy is not dumb. The Papacy must insure that what the Pope dictates ex cathedra cannot be shown to be false at a later date because if this occurred then God would have been wrong. This cannot happen. Let us see whether someone can dispute te fact that the Blessed Virgin Mary was not assumed into heaven!

In my opinion, much of the real trouble in the Middle East began when we supported the ouster of the Shaw of Iran who definitely was a dictator. But what did we do? We strongly supported the return to Iran of the Ayatollah Khomeini. We essentially replaced one dictator with another who talked with God. Which would you rather have? Give me the run-of-the-mill dictator any day. Among the many things that President Carter did were to return the Panama Canal to Panama, which turned out to be a good thing, and the bringing back of the Ayatollah, which was a very bad thing. Oh well there is a balance between good and bad!

With the latter situation we emboldened the radical elements of the Muslim religion. The common people living in the Muslim-controlled Arabian countries do not know anything. The masses are quite stupid and directed and controlled by the Muslim clerics who are the real culprits. Most of them are no different from their prophet, Mohamed, who spread his religion “by the sword.” If you did not convert, you were simply killed. We know these things from history. In these days of political correctness, you cannot talk about these things even though they are correct and true.

In the US we are ignoring the basic problem of “Mullahs gone wild.” We are completely ignoring people who preach sedition. If a Mullah is preaching overthrow of the government, we should recognize this as sedition, arrest them, and put them in jail in solitary confinement where they will be unable to influence others. Harsh treatment, but do you have a better way to deal with the problem?
I do not profess to know it all, but I do know something: one has to cut out the cancer to save the rest of the body; one has to isolate those who preach sedition or sedition will occur; one has to destroy the terrorists to prevent terrorism. This is so logical, I do not understand why more do not appreciate it. We need to take a hard look at those Mullahs around the world who preach sedition. We ask Saudi Arabia to do this, but we do no do it ourselves. We ask Saudi Arabia because we know they can do it but do not want to. We do not do it in our own country because “we have the Constitution and the ACLU!”

Wake up America before it is too late.

nicola michael c. Tauraso, M.D.
Director, Tauraso Medical Clinic
www.drtauraso.com

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WHY DO SMART PEOPLE DO FOOLISH THINGS?

WHY DO SMART PEOPLE DO FOOLISH THINGS?

In this day and age when tragedy occurs, almost immediately there are the recriminations blaming other people for causing the tragedy: the young girl who leaves a bar at 2 in the morning in New York City alone and without a chaperone found murdered the following morning; the girl in Aruba who gets drunk and takes drugs possibly murdered by the strangers with whom she leaves the bar; just several days ago the young 17 year old, most likely as it is now thought, tantalizes a Bengal tiger at the San Francisco Zoo and gets killed by the tiger. Many instances of such events occur almost weekly in the US.

Soon others are being blamed for the foolishness of the victims. Now with the zoo tragedy it was determined that the wall enclosing the tiger was too low – 12 instead of 20 feet as was previously thought. You see, something or some other person will have to be blamed for the tragedy. Blame anything or anybody else other than the victims.

What prompts me to write this Blog is the tragic assassination of Benazir Bhutto in Pakistan yesterday. She by all accounts was a very intelligent woman, probably to have been the next Prime Minister of Pakistan. She knows that the radical elements are trying to kill her, for they tried and almost succeeded on the first day of her return to Pakistan. Now this very intelligent lady gets into her armored Mercedes SUV – armored for protection – and as the car is leaving the area she stands up through the roof window to wave to the crowd when an opportunistic lone gunman fired two shots killing her. This was very foolish!

These are tragedies, none the less. And we, civilized peoples, cannot understand why they have to happen. But they do because there are many among us who are not civilized and are downright evil. Why do we not want to blame the victims of such tragedies? I believe it may be because we do not want to add more misery to an already grieving family. In a way, I can understand this. But let’s face it. The victims in many cases are very culpable for their own tragedies. This is sad, but it is true.

My father who never went to school but who was, nevertheless, a smart man, always preached to me when I was a kid: “tell me who you go out with and I will tell you who you are” and “if you get into trouble with some people, you should not have been there with them in the first place.” As a child and young man I carefully scrutinized where and with whom I went. I am not saying that I never got into trouble because I did, but when I did it was usually due to the fact that I ignored my father’s advice. We do live and learn while walking Planet Earth!

nicola michael c. Tauraso, M.D.
Director, Tauraso Medical Clinic
www.drtauraso.com


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Wednesday, December 12, 2007

THE FEDS DID IT AGAIN!

THE FEDS DID IT AGAIN!

I was sitting in the dining room of my hotel two days ago and told a friend of mine that the Federal Reserve (Fed) was probably going to decrease interest rates by 1/4 point on Tuesday but that they should take the bold step of lowering the rate by ½ to 3/4 point. Knowing the Feds as I do after following their actions for too many years now, I knew they would never take the bold step and do what the market required them to do.

I cannot understand why the members of the Fed are so dumb. The Fed has never been on top of things when Greenspan was in charge and now with Bernanke at the helm. These individuals might be educated men in the conventional way but they completely lack “street smarts” which might give them the ability to deal with the market place.

I must share with you some thing I experienced over 40 years ago. My ex father-in-law owned a garment business in the garment district of New York. He used to quip that he was probably one of the three Christians in the district which was heavily dominated by a generation of Jewish people many of whom immigrated to the US. These people were great business individuals working and surviving in a highly competitive industry. Many of these Jewish people were getting old and looked forward to the day when their sons who the fathers educated at the most prestigious business schools of Harvard, Yale, and Wharton’s. This would allow them to retire and look back on their very productive business career. Many sons took over the successful businesses from their fathers.

But, many of the older fathers had to return several years later to bail their sons out from these previously successful businesses which were now failing. The young educated sons were able to use their calculators, but they could not work successfully in the streets of the garment district. They lacked the “street smarts” I referred to earlier.

As I have watched and studied the Fed over the years, I have noticed they are almost always behind the curve and never proactive. If you really want to send a message to accomplish something in the market, you need to go beyond what the market expects. Then, and only then, will the market make the move you intend. I truly believe we are in the financial mess today with the sub-prime lending market because Bernanke and his ilk moved so rapidly to decrease interest rates continuously and uninterrupted monthly over a period of one plus years that by the time the market reacted to each change it was too late. I have said it before and I will see it again that President Bush is a much smarter and better economist than the members of the Fed board.

What is making the US economy so great in many respects are the tax cuts. This will change if and when the Democrats get elected. I hope the general public realizes this, but they will not. The general public is usually very dumb. I give them credit for nothing. The general public is more interested in what Oprah does that they are not inclined to see the light. Sorry if I sound elitist, but I cannot help it. Quite frequently, my EGO rules. But I believe I am correct on this one.

If you readers are so inclined, review my Blogs over the past 9-10 months and read what I have said about the Fed and determine for yourself whether I am correct or incorrect. My only question is: who is listening?

I am coming to the conclusion that Ron Paul is correct, and that we should abolish the Fed and return to backing up our dollars with something substantial like gold rather than the ink and paper upon which we print more useless dollars.

This is as I see it today here in Panama where the temperature ranges from 78-85 almost every day,

nicola michael c. Tauraso, M.D.
Director, Tauraso Medical Clinic
www.drtauraso.com

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Thursday, December 6, 2007

BANKING SCAM ABOUT TO OCCUR

BANKING SCAM ABOUT TO OCCUR

Another big banking scam may be about to occur. It appears that the banking industry is about to freeze the rates some sub-prime customers are getting.

Let me tell you how the sub-prime loans operate or, at least, the way mine works. You are offered a sub-prime loan whose real interest rate is tied to the feds rate. As the feds rate goes up so does your real rate. When the feds rate goes down, your real rate also goes down.

Several years ago when the rates were low, banks were offering great low rates but those rates were to increase as the feds rate increased. You were also given the option to 1) pay less than the amortized amount of principal with no interest payment, 2) to pay an amount of amortized principal and no interest, 3) to pay an amortized amount of principal based on a 15 year amortization schedule plus interest, and 4) an amortized amount of principal on the full term of the loan plus interest. Who would have thought that the fed was about to embark on a series of interest rate hikes monthly for about one year. Soon all the people who bought low rate loans were now faced with rates over twice what they were paying initially. Of course both options one and two were extremely dangerous because your principal would increase significantly each month as the less than the amount of amortized principal and the interest were added each month increasing your principal.

We are now experiencing a series of interest rate decreases and individuals can expect their interest to decrease as the rate decreases take effect. The government is suggesting that the banks freeze the interest rates at the present rate to help those in trouble. But here is the question: if the rates are frozen during a period of decreasing rates does this mean that the decreasing rates will not be passed on to the customer because their rate has been frozen at the higher amount? I hope the public does not trust the government or the banks to take care of the customer. Not to be cynical, but I believe the banks, anticipating a series of rate decreases, are wanting to freeze the rate at a higher amount.

Who will look into this?

nicola michael c. Tauraso, M.D.
Director, Tauraso Medical Clinic
www.drtauraso.com
posted on Dr. Tauraso’s Blog on 12/6/2007

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Tuesday, December 4, 2007

THE ART AND SCIENCE OF POLITICAL INTERFERENCE

THE ART AND SCIENCE OF POLITICAL INTERFERENCE

The Shaw of Iran and the Ayatollah Khomeini

Does anyone remember when because of turmoil in Iran with the Shaw of Iran we decided to back those forces wanting to return the Ayatollah Khomeini from France where he was in exile? And so in our attempt to solve another nation’s problem we supported the replacement of one dictator with a dictator who talked with God. The Grand Ayatollah eventually was to drive Iran into being one of the greatest enemies of the West if not the ENTIRE world.

We accomplished this because we are bleeding liberals who like to interfere with others because we know what is best for them. The Shaw of Iran might have been a dictator but he was trying to modernize his country, and, when someone is trying to change the habits of an entire country, there will be turmoil. Boy, did we create the mess now in Iran.

The Replacement of Saddam Hussein with What We Now Have

Does anyone remember when we interfered again with the replacement of Saddam Hussein who was keeping Iran busy defending itself to the point that Iran did not have the time or inclination to direct it negative energies against the West. In our attempt to change the world we interfere with the status quo, and create more problems. If we had left Saddam alone he would have continued to harass Iran and the little despotic tyrant presently leading Iran would barely have the time to trim his beard. Boy are we creating a mess again in Iran.

Why do we not just let the Arabs kill themselves. They have been doing it for years. They have become good at it, and let them continue to do what they do best. They are a violent people because their religion is violent and no matter what we do we will never change their status quo. I fully well realize this is not the politically correct thing to say, but the truth is the truth no matter how one slices the pie or parse the words.

Our Interference in Pakistan

Here we are doing it again in Pakistan. Because of perceived discontent in Pakistan and wanting to support Banizir Bhutto we have asked the present President Mushariff to step down as Chief of the Army. Our President is Commander-in-Chief of our armies. Why cannot Mushariff be the same? He has been a friend of the US and has successfully controlled the many terrorists in his country by having a strong army. Who thinks that Bhutto can do any better. She is now back in Pakistan. She is making no attempt to compromise with Mushariff. It is all a power struggle. Do we really believe that a woman would be a better leader or be any different than their male counterparts? Does anyone remember Golda Maier, Indira Ghandi, and the Iron Lady of Great Britain, Margaret Thatcher? Were these women leaders any different from their male counterparts? Should I even attempt to mention Hillary Clinton? Women would like for us to believe that their nurturing qualities would make them leaders who would promote peace throughout the world. The women leaders I have already mentioned surely do not add credence to that belief. Please, don’t make me laugh!

My point is why do we want to disturb the status quo for an unknown entity which might result in potentially disastrous consequences? Have we not learned our lessons? We have interfered with South American politics so often over the years that many South American countries do not trust us anymore. In our belief that others might fare better we disturb the balance – the status quo – which already exists. Not everyone thinks as we do. Basically, we come from an Anglo Saxon political belief system. This may change in time and probably will as the ethnic balance in the US changes. We do not think like Latinos or even Arabians. It is this situation that has precluded our resolution of the problems with Cuba and with the monkey who leads Venezuela. If we understood Latinos we could have completely averted a dispute with Castro. When Castro came to the US to address the United Nations, he wanted so much to have an audience with President Eisenhower who rebuked him. Had we understood the Latino temperament we would have known that when we insult a Latino they usually make friends with our greatest enemy. And this is what subsequently happened. If Eisenhower was smart, he would have invited Castro for a glass of wine or Cuban rum. That, I believe would have been the beginning of an American/Cuban love fest which would have continued to this day.

Castro was in love with the US. This is evidenced by the recent discovery in the archives of President Roosevelt where there was found a letter from a young Castro asking for $10.00 which I do not think Roosevelt ever sent him.

We are a good people but we have, or the liberals have, the mistaken belief that we have the solution to the world’s problems. This, of course, is ludicrous, because we cannot even solve our own problems!

nicola michael c. Tauraso, M.D.
Director, Tauraso Medical Clinic
www.drtauraso.com.

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