Belcher Gastronomique

A cheerily unalphabetical dictionary of food terms

Quote of the day: Vaccines risk vs benefit

Some might wonder what relevance vaccines are to matters of food. One answer, of course, would be to say that all bodily organs and functions subtly interact in a manner that is often not sufficiently recognised by the medical authorities. Another is to point out the role vaccines, and immune adjuvants, may play in increasing the sensitivity of the immune system so that it responds more readily to antigens, such as food particles, sometimes (perhaps often) leading to food allergies. Other routes by which vaccines may interfere with the digestive system have been suggested and warrant further research. Unfortunately, as the quote below suggests, those individuals who plough a lone furrow by pursuing research subjects outside of the current paradigm – individuals who would be the very saviours of science if Karl Popper’s idealistic vision of falsifiable science were descriptive of science in practice rather than prescriptive of a science not warped by the profit motive and vested interests (of reputations, career progressions within existing theories etc.) – are vociferously attacked. In the case of Dr Andrew Wakefield one of the attackers was the Times newspaper, which is controlled by a man with shares in the company with a vested interest in destroying Dr Andrew Wakefield’s reputation, GlaxoSmithKline who make the MMR vaccine.

Vaccines are a mixed blessing. They can stimulate our immune system and generate an immunity to acute disease, but they can also overwhelm our immune system and generate a susceptibility to chronic disease. The question about vaccines is not whether they work; the question is whether the cure is worse than the disease. Are we better off with the artificial immunity that results from vaccines? Or are we better off with the natural immunity that results from the usual childhood diseases of measles, mumps, and chickenpox? Let’s re-visit this question in a calm, objective manner, without polarizing, ad hominem arguments.

Hugh Mann, US Physician on British Medical Journal e-Letters page

This quote (and the others on the page) is the truth behind the hubris most recently in evidence here in Britain in a recent news story about the tragic death of a schoolgirl shortly after she was vaccinated. I was appalled to hear the statements made immediately following this story by doctors who claimed there to be no link whatsoever between the vaccine and the girl’s death. At the time these statements were being made no evidence at all had been accrued to that effect.

Reaction to this story and others can be found on the Alliance for Natural Health site.

October 12, 2009 Posted by | Quote of the Day | , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Major General Albert (Bert) N. Stubblebine III

Major General Albert (Bert) N. Stubblebine III is an expert in PsyOps and Intelligence. He was the subject of Jon Ronson’s The Men Who Stare at Goats. Ronson was led to him through Uri Geller who claimed to have been working as a psychic spy. As if the story could not get stranger, Major General Stubblebine, with his wife Rima Laibow, and their Natural Solutions Foundation, is behind an extraordinarily transparent misinformation campaign regarding the sinister Codex Alimentarius.

That such a campaign is transparent, however, does not of course mean that it has not been successful. A vanishingly small number of people are aware of Codex Alimentarius and what it will mean when it is implemented from December 31st 2009. The Codex, which is clearly intended from its latin name onwards, to be unintelligible, will have serious repercussions for millions of people. It can be soberly said to declare war on civilisation, which began with agricultural cultivation and, of necessity, the storage and selection of seeds, since, following the destruction of Iraq and its cultural inheritage in the second Iraq war, a law known as Order 81 has been passed in Iraq – sometimes called “the cradle of civilisation” – a law which outlaws the keeping back of seeds, ensuring that farmers may be controlled by a small number of huge agricultural corporations such as Monsanto, Cargill and Dow selling seeds which, due to the terminator gene, produce crops from which seeds cannot be held back (it seems curious to me that of all the variables determined by genes, it should be the ability to produce a new generation that should be most in need of ‘correction’, but this only demonstrates the focus of the impetus in genetic modification), and, of course, pesticides, herbicides and fungicides which would in many cases prevent the very crops from growing if they were not genetically modified. Codex Alimentarius, eventually, seeks to do something similar worldwide. That there has been precious little mention of it in the newspapers and mainstream media is evidence that Stubblebine and others who would have the public at large misinformed or uninformed about Codex Alimentarius have been successful.

Major General Albert Stubblebine is a very interesting, very strange creature indeed. His pronouncements on 9/11 warrant attention. His pronouncements on Codex Alimentarius, credible or not, gives credence at least to the tagline of a member of one of the thousands of internet forums out there people by individuals who don’t quite know what to make of this world we are living in but who know that there have been better, less complicated, less sinister times, and who hope that, with any luck, there will be better times ahead: In ten years we’ll look back on this moment, laugh nervously, and quickly change the subject.

General Stubblebine is confounded by his continual failure to walk through his wall. What’s wrong with him that he can’t do it? Maybe there is simply too much in his in-tray for him to give it the requisite level of concentration. There is no doubt in his mind that the ability to pass through objects will one day be a common tool in the intelligence-gathering arsenal.

– Jon Ronson in The Men Who Stare at Goats

October 11, 2009 Posted by | Stu, Uncategorized | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Vendrification

It is sad fact that the novelty of a phenomenon, object or concept that is the very impetus for the coinage of a new word to describe it (something which ought now and then to be a happy occasion in the life of a language, counterbalancing the melancholy fate of words and phrases disdained by the freshest generations) proves seldom to be a guarantor of the quality of neologism. While some linguists object to the etymological miscegenation of the coming together of, for example, greek and latin roots such as in the most notorious example of such a coinage, Sociology, others object to morphemes broken in half and thrown together as prefixes and suffixes much in the way amateur chefs might break dried spaghetti into a pan. The suffix -aholic and its varients cause much consternation. Other coinages seem to err rather in terms of logic. Vendrification is one such example. Based, it seems, upon gentrification, vendrification describes the change in tone of an area with the influx of upmarket food vans and mobile units which may or may not have a fixed ‘pitch’ but which nonetheless have a deleterious effect on the more traditional vendors operating in the area. The objections to this coinage is that whilst the word gentry may with logical consistency be turned into a verb to indicate the change in tone of an area so that it comes to have more in common with the gentry, an area which already has traditional vendors cannot come to have more in common with the word vendor by the displacement of them by more vendors.

[This article is a flub. It appears to be the work of a callow undergraduate attempting wit or erudition beyond his/her grasp. Do you have information on/quotes illustrating uses of VENDRIFICATION? Send them to prof.gavin.belcher@googlemail.com.]

October 11, 2009 Posted by | Ven | , , , , , | Leave a comment

Chloresene

Another name for Lindane

October 11, 2009 Posted by | Chl | , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Celanex

Another name for Lindane

October 11, 2009 Posted by | Cel | , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Bexol

Another name for Lindane

October 11, 2009 Posted by | Bex | , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Gamma-BHC

γ-BHC is another name for Lindane

October 11, 2009 Posted by | γ | , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Gamma-benzene hexachloride

γ-Benzene hexacloride is another name for Lindane

October 11, 2009 Posted by | Gam | , , , , | Leave a comment

Bentox 10

Alternative name for Lindane

October 11, 2009 Posted by | Ben | , , , , , | Leave a comment

Ben-Hex

Alternative name for Lindane

October 11, 2009 Posted by | Ben | , , , , | Leave a comment