FDA AND STATE AUTHORITIES WAR AGAINST NATURAL REMEDIES
A decade's-long dispute between a highly respected physician/scientist and the State of California ended with the elderly doctor, Bruce Halstead, on criminal probation and stripped of his license to practice medicine.
In light of this and other recent actions taken by state governmental authorities in cooperation with such U. S. institutions as the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the FTC (Federal Trade Commission), the government appears to be engaged in a concerted war against a domain of the healing arts known as alternative medicine. This war, ostensibly for the protection of American citizens from unscrupulous "quacks," has apparently moved into a new phase. The FDA's pursuit of medical "public enemies" is no longer restricted primarily to non-MD practitioners not trained at established medical schools--those the general public largely considers the unorthodox fringe of the medical world. These federal agencies are now engaging the force of the government's legal machinery in the prosecution of physicians practicing "conventional medicine"--those who have dared to recognize and even incorporate into their practices the efficacy of holistic natural remedies.
Dr. Halstead is a graduate of Loma Linda University, a medical school which, to those in the field of the human physiological sciences, ranks as one of the more prestigious schools of medicine and scientific research in the world.
The 77-year-old physician is currently on probation under the State of California, Los Angeles County, for his activities involving the prescribing of alternative medication, specifically for his cancer patients. Dr. Halstead has been suspended from any form of medical practice. "In fact," he told The WINDS, "I can't even talk to a patient about nutrition."
When his home and clinic in San Bernardino County were raided by the Los Angeles District Attorney, "I challenged their legal jurisdiction," Halstead informed The WINDS, "since I had never lived or worked in Los Angeles County, but that did not matter. I was a legal novice and had not yet learned that jurisdiction and venue were merely legal fantasies which have no meaning in actual fact for the alternative health physician." (Nor, apparently, does the constitutional doctrine of habeas corpus).
Dr. Halstead was charged with twenty-eight counts of conspiracy, grand theft and violations of the Health and Safety Code, along with twenty felony and misdemeanor counts.
"The prosecutor wanted me to go to prison for eight years," he told The WINDS, "but the court ultimately reduced the sentence to 32 months. I was offered, on at least ten different occasions, the 'opportunity' of plea bargaining for a crime which I did not commit," Halstead explained. "My reply was 'not until hell freezes over.'"
The assault upon alternative medicine "is not just against me," he said. "They're after everybody and everything" connected with the field.
Dr. Halstead, acclaimed as a genius even among his peers, has authored hundreds of books and research publications. Among them are benchmark works such as Poisonous and Venomous Marine Animals of the World which the U.S. Navy considers of such importance as to fund a project to put the entire three-volume tome on CD-ROM.
The WINDS obtained a copy of Dr. Halstead's Curriculum Vitae, the academician's equivalent of a resume´. The following qualifications belong to a man whom the government deems dangerous to his patients, incompetent to practice medicine and academically inadequate to determine what is harmful or beneficial to human physiology:
- Eleven years teaching on the medical faculty of Loma Linda University.
- Specializes in global preventive medicine, tropical diseases and biotoxicology.
- Assistant Director on the School of Tropical and Preventive Medicine, Loma Linda University, Loma Linda, California.
- Assisted in developing a global preventive military medical program at the U.S. Naval Medical School, Bethesda, Maryland.
- Lectured on biotoxicology at the School of Aerospace Medicine, U.S. Air Force, San Antonio, Texas.
- Conducted Arctic expeditions for the U.S. Army, Navy, Air Force and National Institutes of Health, studying poisonous and venomous marine animals, and potential drugs from the sea.
- Contributor to Dorland's Medical Dictionary and the Encyclopedia Britannica, 15th Ed.
- Engaged in marine scientific research with the Jacques Cousteau Society, traveling extensively with the Cousteaus for eighteen years.
Additionally, Dr. Halstead has been deeply involved in the study of the use of oriental herbal therapy on immune deficiency disorders.
If the foregoing portrayal of a physician/scientist depicts a man who is unqualified to recommend treatment to his patients, to whom would the government have its citizens resort?--to those whose abysmal record of success appears to condemn far more patients to death than life. With the aforementioned credentials ascribed to him, one could ask how any law enforcement agency, tasked with the medical oversight and welfare of its citizens, could be so zealous as to prosecute one such as Dr. Halstead and class him with the "snake oil" peddlers they sometimes encounter.
In 1959 Dr. Halstead founded the World Life Research Institute in Grand Terrace, California. It was his work with this organization that, years later, ran him afoul of the Food and Drug Administration when he attempted to incorporate his massive knowledge and experience into the treatment of cancer.
THE MOTIVE SURFACES
Perhaps something else Dr. Halstead revealed to The WINDS has played a part in the FDA's zeal to relegate him to the medical "scrap heap". "We have been monitoring the illicit regulatory activities of the FDA and the cancer establishment, " Halstead claims, "and are in constant contact with a network of organizations and attorneys dealing with their illegal health activities in this country which are steadily driving up our national health costs."
Is it not interesting how money keeps introducing itself into the mix? Halstead concurs making the ominous assertion that, "Cancer is the sacred cow of the medical industry. More people make money by treating cancer than there are victims dying from the disease."
After a 25-year effort into medical/biological research, "I was shocked," Dr. Halstead exclaimed, "to find upon my Rip Van Winkle return to clinical medicine that dangerous toxic drugs, all FDA approved, had proliferated to a frightening extent--over 1.54 billion prescriptions written in the U.S. per year.
"I found," Halstead continues, "that many of these drugs destroy your immune system and are carcinogenic. New and awesome medical technologies were also being spawned, mind-blowing in both their diagnostic capability and staggering costs to the consumer.
"However, in evaluating this new drug and health technology, I did not find a commensurate improvement in either morbidity or mortality statistics in chronic degenerative afflictions such as cardiovascular disease and cancer. Costs had increased, but not the overall health index. We had dropped to about 23[rd] position among the nations of the world in health care."
This data, presented by an eminent physician/scientist, raises the logical question as to whether this may be a reasonable explanation as to why the strike by New York doctors several years ago resulted in a decline in the city's overall death rate. "At this point in time," Halstead concludes, "I have the profound conviction that America is on a disaster course in health care both economically and therapeutically....A dangerous therapeutic mind set exists in this country that it is better to die in an orthodox fashion than to survive in an unorthodox manner."
In reference to his implication that the government would rather allow an individual to die than to condone the application of "unorthodox" treatment, Dr. Halstead relates the following event he presented in his court trial:
"During my final oral argument I recounted the incident when defendant Alfred Dix and his wife had their home raided by the Los Angeles District Attorney. Mr. Dix had been using and selling the herbal drink." [The doctor is here speaking of a specific compound of Japanese herbs (ADS) from which a tea is made that many clinical trials, according to Halstead, have proven very effective in the treatment of cancer].
"Mrs. Dix had been diagnosed as having terminal abdominal cancer. She had had surgery, nine different types of chemotherapy, and over ninety different treatments of radiation, all of which had failed. Her doctors told her that she had only 30 to 45 days to live. She was bedridden, had given up hope, and was preparing to die. She and her husband had even contacted a mortician to make funeral arrangements.
"Mr. Dix then came in contact with ADS [the herbal compound]. After taking ADS for about ten days, Mrs. Dix began to feel better, started doing housework, shopping, traveling, and started entertaining again. I met Mr. and Mrs. Dix one day in the lobby of a hotel in Pasadena. She was walking, mentally alert, happy and laughing, and stated emphatically that she was feeling great. No aches or pains - thanks to ADS.
"At the time of the raid at the Dix home, the D.A. confiscated all of her ADS. Her husband begged and tearfully pleaded with the D.A. to release enough of the ADS for his wife's use. The D.A. refused to release any of the tea to her.
"The next time I saw Mrs. Dix was in the courtroom. She looked pale, in a weakened condition, unable to walk, crestfallen and anguished. A few days later she died - a broken woman, a victim of the land of the free and the home of the brave.
"What has happened to our national ideal of life, liberty and pursuit of happiness? Why has the prosecution denied Mrs. Dix the right to retain a cup of harmless adaptogenic tea which she purchased for her own cancerous condition? What has happened to her civil liberties?
"I could not think of a single tyrannical country in which this scenario could have taken place."
Perhaps, one might reason, Dr. Bruce Halstead's case and claims are somewhat of an isolated example of government intervention into the medical lives of Americans.