Early Morning Wake-Up Call Interview with Charles Thomas

The following transcript is derived from an interview of Charles Thomas on the "Early Morning Wakeup Call" with Willi Rose and Jerry London on KPSL, Palm Springs, California April 23, 1997.

It was arranged by Willi Rose who believed a discussion with an eminent scientist such as Charles Thomas would furnish useful light on a public issue of great significance. It is published with the permission of Charles Thomas and the KPSL talk show hosts Willi Rose and Jerry London.

Willi: Dr. Charles Thomas is a very respected molecular biologist, a former professor for many years at Harvard Medical School, and former chairman of the Department of Cellular Biology at the Scripps Clinic and Research Foundation. He °s currently President and CEO of the Pantox Corporation in San Diego.

Jerry: Okay. We'll talk about it. We'll talk about viruses and we'll talk about HIV. And_the correlation between the two--HIV and AIDS. You have heard a lot of people talk about..."Well, he's HIV positive, but it hasn't gone into full-blown AIDS." And then there are a lot of people who say, "Well, he's taking AZT and the combination of all these drug cocktails so that it doesn't go into full-blown AIDS." Or then you hear that the drug retards the growth of the disease into full-blown AIDS and all the other symptomatic things that go with it. They take the drug cocktails, you know, but the drug cocktails are too expensive, etc., etc., etc. So we will ask questions like that because they seem to be on everyone's mind right now. People wonder whether or not the fatality rate is going down at all from those suffering from AIDS, and if it is, why? And that's the name of that tune. Now you've been talking to the man, so why don't you come up with the introduction.

Willi: Okay. I can do that. We have Doctor Charles Thomas here. Hello Doctor.

Charles: Hello. Nice to be here.

Willi: It sure is great to have you. We have talked earlier about the fundamental question: Does the HIV virus cause a variety of disease conditions collectively known as AIDS?

Charles: Right

Willi: And we also mentioned Peter Duesberg. You know that guy?

Charles: He has been one of the most vigorous opponents of the HIV theory.

Jerry: And Doctor Ho?

Willi: Then there °s David Ho.

Charles: Sure. Well, David Ho is a different kettle of fish.

Willi: Exactly. So their positions are different. Quite different.

Jerry: Why don't we talk about first, Doctor...what you envision as your position on the HIV-AIDS thing.

Charles: Well, I began to look into it about 1987 or '88. And I was astonished. Since I am a virologist, a molecular virologist, I was astonished to find there was no definitive paper which demonstrated that HIV caused AIDS. And subsequently I've been unable to find such a paper. Neither has any of our group, which is now at least a thousand people strong.

Willi: What is the name of your group?

Charles: The Group for the Scientific Reappraisal of the HIV-AIDS hypothesis.

Jerry: If that be true, is there anything to the contrary? Is there anything that says something else causes AIDS? Anything definitive?

Charles: Yes. There are a few. You see AIDS is a politically contrived list of diseases, of 29 of them actually, including recently cervical cancer, so that the women could benefit from the Ryan White Act. So to talk about AIDS you really should talk about each of these individual diseases.

Willi: And not connect them to HIV?

Charles: And ask whether they are, or are not connected to HIV.

Jerry: Okay, let's take one. Let's talk about the specific types of cancers thought to be an outgrowth of it.

Charles: Kaposi's sarcoma is the hallmark cancer.

Jerry: Right.

Charles: Well there now have been so many cases of Kaposi's sarcoma in which investigators can find no evidence by any means whatsoever of HIV that the CDC for a while--the Centers for Disease Control--was thinking about eliminating Kaposi's from the list of diseases which define AIDS.

Jerry: And yet, isn't it true, at least from what we've been told, that there's almost a universality of the fact that people who do have something defined as AIDS, as one of the ailments, whether it be a pneumococcal infection, also have the Kaposi's sarcoma to go with it?

Charles: Oh no. Kaposi's sarcoma was very frequent in the initial stages of AIDS but it has been dwindling as a proportion of the cases ever since. So in most cases that are CDC defined as AIDS now, Kaposi's cannot be found... unlike the Kaposi's of former times. This kind of Kaposi's affects only a certain class of people, namely promiscuous and highly drug-taking homosexuals. Thirty-three percent of the Kaposi's cases are in the lung. Also the tumors appear on the face and neck. Quite the opposite from the classic Kaposi°s.

Jerry: Are we almost putting the Kaposi's sarcoma into the category of STDs? Sexually transmitted diseases?

Charles: Well, No! That's certainly not the case. Women in general do not get Kaposi's.

Jerry: Ah-ha!

Willi: Oh, that's interesting.

Charles: It's only the popper-sniffing, pathological homosexuals who wind up with it. AIDS that occurs in blood transfusion cases virtually never have Kaposi's.

Jerry: You mentioned before that there are 29 different diseases that are lumped together to be called AIDS. Are each one of the 29 indigenous to a specific population? Are they gender-oriented?

Charles: Generally not. I mean, for example, the next most frequently AIDS defined disease is pheumocystis carinii. That is a yeast kind of infection-causing pneumonia--that occurs in both males and females, and often occurs with older people, and eventually takes them out. I'll bet you a nickel that you have pneumocystis in your throat and lungs right now. Most of us control these infections all the time. It's those who are impaired, who have impaired immune responses, who are unable to deal with them and are overcome by them.

Willi: Wow!

Jerry: So, in other words, what we are really talking about is that all the talk about the research for a cure for AIDS addresses an impossible situation, because each of these diseases would require a different curative agent to be successful.

Charles: You are exactly correct, and you are exhibiting alarming common sense.

Willi: Then the word AIDS has no meaning?

Charles: Of course. But it is a great device to get money out of the American taxpayer.

Willi: Ah-ha.

Jerry: Now, if indeed we have 29 different diseases, and this is accepted maybe politically and by a lot of the givers of money to specific charities_ what we are really saying is that if indeed we are going to be researching in the right direction, each of these individual 29 diseases should be researched to find a cure for them specifically.

Charles: That is correct. There are a hell of a lot of people out there who are positive to the HIV antibody test who don't even know it_and they will never come down with any of the 29 diseases.

Jerry: Quite probably the most notable case, the one that has certainly got the most notoriety, is the one of Irvin Magic Johnson, who some years ago was diagnosed as being HIV positive and was still out playing basketball, and hasn't exhibited anything you could call truly symptomatic of what we have come to know as AIDS.

Charles: Absolutely. We have many people in our group that are members of the Group for the Scientific Reappraisal who are HIV positive_who have no other symptoms at all. One of them, for example, is a 75 year old physician living with his wife in Montana who is enjoying his retirement, backpacking in the mountains there. He has been HIV positive for more than 15 years. His wife has never sera-converted and needless to say he has no problem.

Jerry: Isn't that interesting. Let's talk about a thing called a death certificate. Somebody passes away in a hospital from a disease.

Charles: Right.

Jerry: Now when a physician fills out a death certificate, is it filled out as AIDS or is it filled out as a specific disease?

Charles: It is filled out as AIDS. Let's take as an example pneumonia, a common way for people to die. If the person who dies is HIV-positive, has antibodies to HIV, and dies of pneumonia, then he dies of AIDS by definition, because that's what the code calls for. If he dies of pneumonia and is HIV negative, then he dies of pneumonia, and drops off the scope because many people die of pneumonia, of course.

Jerry: I know there are specific treatments either through inhalation of antibiotics or other things or even the techniques of clapping on the back of a pneumonia patient to try to loosen things up...recognized treatments for pneumonia. Now are those recognized treatments effective in someone whose immune system, HIV-wise, has kind of been blown out, or does it still take some of the other highly touted things like AZT and some of the other drug cocktails? Does it still take those to get rid of the pneumonia or can pneumonia be gotten rid of, even if someone is HIV-positive, by using standard techniques of treating pneumonia?

Charles: No one is ever cured by these AZT and AZT-like treatments. They only take them downhill.

Willi: Now that kills them?

Charles: That kills them, but if an individual has an impaired immune response, if pneumonia doesn't get you, something else will. That is a condition that leaves you wide open and vulnerable to all kinds of infectious diseases. So with an impaired immune response your innermost belt of defenses is down and you are very vulnerable. Only about two-thirds of all the 29 diseases, about 20 of them, are diseases of immuno-suppression. The other one-third have nothing to do with immuno-suppression. For example, Kaposi's sarcoma can be found in many patients who have a fully developed immune system, which is kind of astonishing. So there are many ways to knock down the immune system, focusing on that two-thirds. One way is by consumption of "popper" drugs, particularly amyl nitrite. There are drugs known as poppers. Amyl nitrite is like nitroglycerin. It breaks down into NO Star Radical (nitric oxide Radical), which is a mutagen and potential carcinogen. NO Star relaxes blood vessels, and therefore it is a drug of choice for these highly promiscuous homosexuals, because it relaxes the sphincters that control the blood supply to the penis. When those are relaxed the penis is inflated and also the anal sphincters are relaxed. So this is an ideal drug for those people, but NO Star causes tumors.

Jerry: If the blood vessels are relaxed, does that not make them a lot more susceptible to any other infection that might be hovering around the body?

Charles: I don't know if that in itself does, but NO is highly immuno-suppessive. Many experiments demonstrate this, particularly those of Toby Eisenstein in Pennsylvania, in Pittsburgh.

Willi: Can we turn to the media for a moment and how it is showing AIDS? Jerry saw something the other night.

Jerry: It was either on the Learning Channel or Discovery. They did an hour long special on what they view as the inception of AIDS. They went back to Africa and started talking about when the first cases started showing up. What they were saying is that 80% of what we are calling AIDS right now, of those diseases, were spread heterosexually, not homosexually.

Charles: I didn't see that channel. I don't watch much television I have to admit.

Jerry: They traced it back to the prostitutes of Africa who were hitting all the mining camps.

Charles: Yes, but what you see we are talking about here is the concep, the idea that AIDS is an infectious disease, and that you can catch it from one person to another by way of transmission of one substance which contain a bacteria or viruses.

Jerry: Usually a bodily fluid?

Charles: A bodily fluid that contains micro-organisms. It has never been demonstrated that AIDS is truly an infectious disease, you see.

Willi: Exactly.

Charles: It has never been demonstrated that AIDS is an infectious disease.

Willi: So the media is doing the public a huge disservice?

Charles: Absolutely.

Jerry: Where °s the media getting its information?
Charles: They're getting it from these highly visible, government-financed scientists like Robert Gallo, Bill Hazeltine and David Ho.

Jerry: How about somebody who I guess is in a closely allied field such as yours, if not the same one. That was Doctor Ho, or David Ho that we spoke about earlier. Where does his opinion differ?

Charles: He has been moving from cofactor to cofactor, but he °s the cofactor guy. He believes that there are other factors involved in the establishment of "AIDS," in addition to HIV.

Jerry: His main thrust is viral, isn°t it?

Charles: Viral or PPLOs--plural pneumonia-like organisms. Mycobacter.

Jerry: Is it...can we...are we going to get to the point where maybe we oversimplify by taking a specific disease like pneumonia or one of the other 29 and using that almost as a marker to decide whether or not someone should be treated in a specific manner?

Charles: I don't know. I think there are plenty of ways that AIDS people should be treated, but if you keep in your mind that it is an infectious agent and try to kill the infected cells, you are going to fail. Because it is by no means clear that any of these people are suffering from a microbe. They are probably suffering from too many drugs in this country. Almost 90 percent of the AIDS cases are drug consumers. I'm talking about street drugs.

Jerry: Right.

Charles: And it is generally not known among this highly promiscuous--what I call pathological--homosexual population that a large amount of drugs are consumed concomitant with their activity.

Jerry: So what you are saying is that it's not just the dirty hypodermic, it's the drug itself?

Charles: Of course.

Jerry: Okay.

Charles: It's an amazing story, isn't it?

Willi Rose: Yes, it truly is.

Jerry: Yeah, it is.

Willi: You do something down in San Diego, Pantox, the blood panel research. I thought that was very interesting. Could you explain?

Charles: What Pantox we're trying to assess the defensive system itself, the anti-oxidant defensive system. And this plays a key role in retarding or preventing cellular aging. Cellular aging forms the basis of so many diseases, such as cancer and heart disease and other things.

Jerry: So are you saying then that the body itself has the capability of becoming the strongest ally toward fighting any of these diseases through the ingestion of natural substances rather than drugs?

Charles: Absolutely! And it has been doing so for millions and millions of years.

Jerry: Yea. We're still here.

Willi: What is it you do now..about getting a blood sample?

Charles: From all over the world actually or most of the world anyhow, we receive samples of human serum on dry ice, and we measure the concentration of a whole lot of lipid soluble antioxidants such as Vitamin E, two different kinds of Vitamin E, three different carotenoids, Q10, Vitamin A, and then we measure Vitamin C, urate, bilirubin, and things like that--more than twenty substances. Also we measure a complete iron panel.

Willi: Oh!

Charles: Because I'm convinced that a lot of human disease is driven by iron, too much iron.

Jerry: Rather than a deficiency?

Charles: That's correct. We've also done a number of AIDS people and of course, as expected, their vitamin A and other levels are extremely low because it has been knocked out.

Jerry: Is Pantox recognized as a full-fledged field trial...looking at a complete set of people where you are trying to prove something by controlled testing?

Charles: Yes. We are a licensed clinical, state-approved laboratory.

Jerry: Okay.

Charles: And we've done nearly 6,000 different people, and we've statistically analyzed our results, and what we find is really quite astonishing.

Jerry: Okay. Let's stay with that for a moment. Within the confines of those trials, I would imagine that there have been a lot of people who have been diagnosed with the blanket we've used--AIDS. Has there been any kind of a curative rate or anything done with vitamins versus placebos on a test group to see if they can come back just on vitamins? If the immune system can be restored to normal functioning?

Charles: I can promise you that not a single thing has been done. And also that there has not been a single set of experiments done to relate AIDS to drug consumption in the United States.

Jerry: Is anybody talking about that now? About seriously doing it?

Charles: No. Because all the money comes from the NIH and the government, and the government is totally committed to the HIV theory, and anyone who wants to even question this is not only prevented from receiving money but is also prevented from publishing in recognized journals such as Science and Nature. The Group for the Scientific Reappraisal tried to get a simple letter published years ago just saying we think other avenues ought to be explored, and we were rejected, repeatedly.

Willi: So as long as you agree with that, they will publish it. Like Time magazine, for instance and David Ho.

Charles: Absolutely.

Jerry: I guess some study and work has to be done toward upgrading this thing and at least giving the people who are looking at alternative therapies the same "leg up" as those who follow the party line, so-to-speak.

Charles: We spent billions of dollars a year on research on HIV and not a nickel on alternatives, and this is a consequence of the source of funding. Government money in this area has perverted science. And it has perverted science for the simple reason of money.

Willi: Yeah.

Charles: It's a terrible, terrible story.

Jerry: Kind of sounds like being at Santa Anita and saying, "You'll recognize horse number five. He's the one with the blinders."

Charles: You know, thinking of that analogy reminds me of the definition of AIDS itself. You know I'm often asked when I lecture on the subject, "What percentage of the people who have AIDS are HIV positive? And people wonder for a minute. The answer of course is: 100 percent, because that's the way it is defined. You can't have AIDS unless you have antibodies to HIV.

Jerry: Now how many things are called HIV that really have nothing to do with it? How many are labeled that way?

Charles: Now you are getting into a whole other area. The virus itself has a very shady history. It was isolated by Luc Montagnier, stolen by Robert Gallo of the NIH, who is now still feasting on his spoils. But there is a group in Australia that questioned the existence of the virus itself. And certainly I can promise you that the antibody test that has been developed is highly cross-reactive. And this gets us to Africa because those people who have leprosy, malaria, and other kinds of protozoal and parasitic diseases often have antibodies which will cross-react with those of HIV. So they are really listed as antibody-plus and therefore having AIDS for that reason. Even though they may not have antibodies specifically for HIV.

Jerry: What we're really doing is blaming it on Africa. We might as well blame it on Malachi, who lived a hundred years ago with the lepers.

Charles: I think that is exactly right.

Willi: Yeah, why not?

Charles: That is exactly right. The disease in Africa is quite different than the disease in the United States. First of all, the definition was up until recently, the Bangui definition which merely involves persistent diarrhea, persistent cough lasting more than a month, etc. And no antibody tests were done. Now in Africa there are a lot of people who have persistent diarrhea and persistent cough.

Jerry: Yeah. For sure. Charles: Now how in the hell are you going to define AIDS in that context?

Jerry: That's like saying if you're going into Africa and you don't want to get AIDS, don't drink the water

Charles: We sent a group over to Africa a couple of years ago and they reported they stayed at a hotel and a guy was killed on a motorcycle right out in front of the hotel. The next morning it was listed in the paper as an AIDS-related suicide. They asked the doorman who was a party to all the gossip of the street. He said, "Of course it was listed as an AIDS-related suicide. The guy was killed by another car that hit him from the side. But if we list him just as an automobile accident, we don't get any money, but if we list him as an AIDS-related suicide, the United States sends more money!"

Willi: Oh, my God!

Charles: So the whole thing is driven again by U.S. taxpayer dollars.

Jerry: That is vaguely reminiscent to what we used to do in Vietnam with the body counts.

Charles: Really?

Jerry: Oh sure. We used to say, "They went out and they counted 116 VC bodies when maybe there were 3, but it made the war so much more palatable for the folks back home, when we told 'em what a great job we were doing and how many people we were killing. So I can see where we'd send more money if there were more AIDS in Africa.

Charles: Yup.

Jerry: Is there a light at the end of the tunnel as far as research goes?

Charles: My own answer is no. I don't think this thing will ever go away until the participants, until the dramatis personae fade from the scene.

Jerry: If there were a change in Administration in the year 2000 and the Republicans got back in, would there conceivably be a change in the national scene where the Centers for Disease Control would be under a new head who might be more prone to start additional testing on alternative methods?

Charles: Well, maybe so, but of course I've often said that the way to cure AIDS is to cut off to zero tonight all Federal funding in AIDS. And the disease would disappear in two weeks!

Jerry: And let the private medical sector do its thing.

Willi: Very true.

Charles: Absolutely.

Willi: Before we go, I know we're running low on time right now. Talking about your blood panel research, is there any way that I could have my blood checked out?

Charles: Oh sure. I'd love to do your blood. What you do is you call us up at 1-888-726-8698. It's a toll-free number. Then ask for some information and we send you information on how to go about it. You have a sample of blood serum sent down to us on dry ice and we mail you a box to do so. Your insurance will cover it ,or we take Medicare assignments.

Willi: Wow. So you can then find out if you are taking the proper amount of nutrients?

Charles: That's right. Because what you eat and take in your nutritional supplement program is not exactly what you get into your blood serum. As a matter of fact, they can be quite different. What you eat is not what you get. That's why you have to measure.

Willi: I think that°s a fabulous idea.

Jerry: So many things are not readily absorbed.

Charles: That's true. Also we find that so many things are used up more rapidly. For example, we find in cancer patients that the Vitamin A is depleted more rapidly, which is kind of an amazing

Jerry: And of course Vitamin C has been known to be short-term for a long time.

Charles: That's true. Of course with smokers it's wiped out almost right away. We'd like to have as many people who have been classified with AIDS as possible have their blood serum tested, because we think if they get themselves back on the right track, from our point of view, they could forget about HIV.

Jerry: Terrific!

Willi: Fabulous idea.

Jerry: So if any of our listeners out there, if you have been diagnosed with what the blanket term calls AIDS, then you want to call this morning 888-726-8698.

Willi: Get your blood tested.

Jerry: And maybe find out how you can get better cheaper. A whole lot cheaper.

Willi: And get well! For heaven's sake.

Jerry: What are the hours of operation of the phone down there?

Charles: The hours are 8 to 4:30 Pacific Time. But it's also on an answering service.

Jerry: Terrific. Doctor, we want to thank you for being with us. It has been a pleasure. More than interesting.

Charles: Well, I'm awfully glad you called me and I hope a lot of people will begin to question the standard orthodoxy in AIDS.

Email 10-1-97
Scott. Barry Lynes here visiting Willi Rose. Thought I'd drop you a quick hello.

If you publish the Charles Thomas transcript, please consider at the end of the transcript, even if you choose to do it months from now, that Charles' remarks are particularly significant in light of the Sep 29, 1997 announcement at a Toronto conference sponsored by the American Society of Microbiology that the "AIDS cocktails" promoted by David Ho, Time's Man of the Year, are now failing. The data behind the announcement was provided by the Univ of Cal at San Francisco, through its public AIDS clinic at SF Gen Hosp. The doctor was Dr. Steven Deeks.

Derived from an AP story by Daniel Q. Haney.

Copyright © 1996. The Light Party.

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