Monday, November 21, 2011

Is establishment medicine an injurious scam?

By Denis G. Rancourt

Abstract -- Establishment medicine is sustained by a triad of core deceptions: (1) An apical lie by omission which does not admit that the predominant causal determinant of an individual’s health is the individual’s real and perceived place in the society’s dominance hierarchy, (2) the “voodoo lie” of the false scientific foundation of its professional practice which does not admit that most of medical research used to justify the recommended “treatments” is wrong and that consequently the “treatments” are ineffective at best, and (3) the dirty secret that establishment medicine (in North America) is itself the third leading cause of death, after cancer and cardiovascular failures for which medicine is of little use. All three core deceptions have been decisively exposed by leading-edge mainstream researchers whose works have had virtually no impact in reforming the profession.

In his “An Appeal to the Young” Peter Kropotkin, in 1880, challenged young graduates entering the professions this way [1]:

"What the devil!" you say. "But if abstract science is a luxury and practice of medicine mere chicane; if law spells injustice, and mechanical invention is but the means of robbery; if the school, at variance with the wisdom of the ‘practical man,’ is sure to be overcome; and art without the revolutionary idea can only degenerate, what remains for me to do?"

Well, I will tell you.

A vast and most enthralling task; a work in which your actions will be in complete harmony with your conscience, an undertaking capable of rousing the noblest and most vigorous natures.

Professional schools of course do not follow Kropotkin’s curriculum. Instead, professional training directs the student’s self-indoctrination to accept the scam of the profession [2].

Hierarchy -- Hidden Predominant Health Factor

To potential medical doctors Kropotkin prescribes this [1]:

You, doctors ... never weary of telling us today, tomorrow, onward to decay if men remain in the present conditions of existence and work; that all your medicaments must be powerless against disease while the majority of mankind vegetate in conditions absolutely contrary to those which science tells us are healthful; convince the people that it is the causes of disease which must be uprooted, and show us all what is necessary to remove them.

Come with your scalpel and dissect for us, with an unerring hand, this society of ours, hastening to putrefaction. Tell us what a rational existence should and might be. Insist, as true surgeons, that a gangrenous limb must be amputated when it may poison the whole body.

Non-“abstract” science has, since Kropotkin’s time, further informed us about the “conditions absolutely contrary to those which science tells us are healthful” as follows: Of course a lethal workplace (such as unregulated mining in a toxic dust environment) kills, as do starvation, malnutrition, hypothermia and dehydration, as extreme physiological stresses that cause metabolic failures or invite disease. But barring obvious utmost physical causes of health failure associated with war and extreme exploitation of populations, science has shown that the next predominant determinant (not just correlate but causal determinant) of individual health is the individual’s real and self-perceived position in the society’s dominance hierarchy [3][4].

Documented empirical facts and experimental results from the small but vibrant “hierarchy and health” mainstream medical research community (e.g., [3]) establish a dominant causal relationship between socioeconomic status and human health and mortality; which is not simply due to differences in resource allocation, access to medical care, life-style differences (smoking, drinking, diet, exercise, etc.), work accidents and other such relatively “incidental” whole-population factors but which instead is due to the direct impacts of dominance hierarchy on physiological functions.

Socioeconomic status is the single most dominant predictor of health, and the physiological mechanisms for this causal relation (from socioeconomic status to individual health) continue to be elucidated by population studies and laboratory experiments [3].

The vector is psychosocial stress which significantly impacts the immune system, fertility, the brain, the heart (hypertension, pathogenic cholesterol profile), and adrenal gland function [3]. This in turn acts via the canonical link between the immune system and cancer (second leading cause of death) and via the first leading cause of death which is cardiovascular failure, in stable societies [4].

The known main stress-causing social circumstances arising from dominance hierarchies are [3]: “(i) low degrees of social control and predictability ...; (ii) a paucity of outlets after exposure to stressors ...; (iii) a paucity of social support ...; or (iv) high rates of physical stressors ...”

It follows, therefore, that one of the medical establishment’s first priorities will be to keep this pivotal and conclusive scientific finding -- that the society’s dominance hierarchy is the dominant causal determinant of individual health -- hidden from collective consciousness. Otherwise, Kropotkin’s medical school curriculum might threaten to impose itself and the medical profession would be robbed of its placebo and poison-as-medication scams which are the economic drivers of its societal status, within the dominance hierarchy which causes ill-health in all but the uppermost strata in its structure...

That subservience kills -- is THE killer, is a truth that must not surface.

As with any profession, the medical profession’s predation of the broader society is premised on a lie so big that the truth cannot easily emerge. Imagine that...: All the “health factors” that medicine preoccupies itself with are completely secondary, when they are relevant at all, compared to the overbearing impact of an individual’s oppression from the society’s dominance hierarchy.

In addition to the dominance hierarchy stress on the subordinate individual being directly the main killer, it also makes one stupid [3]:

“Animals who are socially stressed by the dominance hierarchy for prolonged periods undergo neurobiological changes as well. This can involve inhibition of neurogenesis, dendritic atrophy, and impairment of synaptic plasticity in the hippocampus and altered patterns of apoptotic cell death (increases in the cortex and decreases in the hippocampus)”

which may be part of the reason, in a stable dominance hierarchy, that corrupt and predatory professions and organizations are so resilient against exposure and reform -- but I digress.

That subservience is the killer is the apical lie of the medical establishment. It is a lie by omission. Next there is the lie of a false practice, what might be called the “voodoo lie”: That the mainstream practice of medicine is not based on science as alleged by adherents. And, finally, there is the dirty secret: That medicine is the third leading cause of death in “advanced” societies (North America), surpassed only by conditions (cancer and heart disease) for which medicine can do virtually nothing. Let us examine these further lies as follows.

Medical Research -- Bad Science

A small group of establishment so-called "meta-researchers" have pointed out what must at some level be obvious to many clinicians and researchers, that most medical research findings are wrong. "80 percent of non-randomized studies (by far the most common type) turn out to be wrong", as do large fractions of both randomized and large randomized trials [5]. Meta-researchers find that most medical research on which medical practice is based is "misleading, exaggerated, and flat out wrong" [5].

These meta-researchers are highly recognized and publish in the top medical journals yet their message does not drive reforms in the profession. This paradox has been tentatively explained this way [6]:

“[T]he medical establishment, with its heavy mythology about saving lives, is in deep need of reparative peer-group banter. And what better banter then that from a meta-researcher explaining that from a statistical perspective -- without actually ever singling anyone out -- that from a statistical perspective most of what we take as known and most of what we do is wrong, haha, see the graph over here...

[The medical meta-researcher] is a provider of self-image-soothing locker-room banter for the medical profession. Only colleagues who will dare to point fingers have any chance of changing anything.”

In any case, the main point here is that most medical research is not reliable. This is not surprising for many reasons, both societal and scientific, not the least of which is that the research concerns itself with distant secondary or false causes of ill-health since it is blind by-design to the predominant direct causal factor that is the society’s dominance hierarchy.

The research studies by-design exclude the most relevant interpretive paradigm (effects of hierarchical oppression) and instead concentrate on ancillary factors which in turn are statistically disordered by the particulars of the hierarchical oppression and of the individual’s response to this oppression. The career-driven researcher attempts to extract (consequently dubious and always tenuous) statistical correlations between supposed causal indicators and supposed health indicators, both being neither, in view of recommending a treatment, which often happens to be an expensive pharmaceutical “medication” aimed at providing only a marginal improvement in patient comfort without an objective measure of patient comfort. The latter is called “palliative care.”

So drugs are approved as demonstrated-safe and then withdrawn because they are killers and organs are removed as standard treatment until the practice "evolves" and regular cancer tests are highly recommended until they are "discovered" to do more harm than good and AIDS is created into a human epidemic thanks to vaccination programs and fat is unhealthy until it is declared healthy and poison is good for you because when we stop the poison you think you feel better then before we started and indicator symptoms (like high blood pressure) can be removed with powerful drugs so you can die of the actual cause with the benefits of drug side effects and without ever knowing why and on and on.

The practice of medicine, when it is based on scientific research, is based on bad research providing wrong results. Modern medicine is good at trauma intervention (heart attack, road accident, sporting accident, etc.). Beyond that: Beware. Beware indeed, as the next section shows.

Medical Practice -- Death Machine

We’ve all heard some medical doctor interviewed on the radio gratuitously make the bold proposal that life expectancy has increased thanks to modern medicine. Nothing could be more distant from the truth.

Life expectancy has increased in First World countries thanks to a historical absence of civil and territorial wars, more accessible food, less work and non-work accidents, and better overall living and working conditions. Not surprisingly given the above discussion, the single known strongest documented indicator of personal health within and between countries is economy status, irrespective of access to medical technology and pharmaceuticals.

As noted above, the only statistically significant advances in establishment medicine (distinct from public health) are in trauma intervention. That is, less young folks in urban centers die of heart attacks and more car accident victims survive.

Outside of trauma intervention, the impact of establishment medicine is far from neutral. It is conclusively negative. The third leading cause of death in North America is medical error, after cardiac disease and cancer -- not counting misattributed deaths from correctly administered “treatments” and there is a large gap between this conservative underestimate in the number of medical error deaths and the fourth leading cause of death [7][8].

Since medicine can do little for heart disease and cancer and since medicine has only a small overall statistical positive impact in the area of trauma interventions, it is fair to conclude that public health would increase if all medical doctors simply disappeared [9]. And think of all the time loss and stress that sick folks would save…

One of the most dangerous places in society is the hospital. Medical errors include misdiagnoses, bad prescriptions, prescriptions of medications that should not be combined, unnecessary surgery, unnecessary or badly administered treatments including chemotherapy, radiation treatment, and corrective surgeries.

In a remarkable disregard for logic and for discriminating cause and ancillary effect, doctors in their recommended practice prescribe drugs to remove symptoms that are risk indicators (i.e., correlates) rather than address the causes of the risks, thereby only adding to the assault on the body.

Bone head medical doctors and psychiatrists routinely apply unproven (see above) “recommended treatments” and prescribe dangerous drugs for everything from high blood pressure from a sedentary lifestyle in oppression, to apathy at school, to anxiety in public places, to post-adolescence erectile function, to non-conventional sleep patterns, and to all the side effects from the latter drugs.

Psychiatry’s large-scale vicious attack against people is documented in the works of Peter Breggin [10] who explains how this profession has in the recent past gone along with institutionalized mass murder [11].


We must conclude that establishment medicine, anchored in the medical profession, is an injurious scam and an occupying predator of people constrained within society’s dominance hierarchy. Of course doctors are respectable members of society, good parents, responsible professionals and all that but they are also the professional maintainers and executors, conscious or not, interested or not, of a system of exploitation and deceit that drains resources and vitality from an occupied population [4].

In light of the above, it is difficult to accept that “progressive” elements of society such as national workers unions in Canada, would campaign in favour of a universal drug program, for example, rather than directly campaign for health sanity and stringent constraints against big-pharma and medical insurance corporations and their political influence. A Left that stabilizes the dominance hierarchy rather than attempts to flatten it (democratize it) is part of the problem. At least on the libertarian Right individuals seek a free hand in defending themselves. [12]


[1] “An Appeal to the Young” by Peter Kropotkin, 1880.

[2] "Disciplined Minds: A critical look at salaried professionals and the soul-battering system that shapes their lives" by Jeff Schmidt, 2000.

[3] “The influence of social hierarchy on primate health (Review)” by Robert M. Sapolsky, Science, vol.308, p.648-652, 2005, and references therein.

[4] "Anti-smoking culture is harmful to health: On the truth problem of public health management" by Denis G. Rancourt, 2011.

[5] "Lies, Damned Lies, and Medical Science" by David H. Freedman, The Atlantic, 2010.

[6] “On the sociology of medical meta-science: Exposing the Truth supports the Lie” by Denis G. Rancourt, 2011.

[7] "Is US Health Really the Best in the World?" by Barbara Starfield. Journal of the American Medical Association, Vol.284, No.4, 2000, pages 483-485.]

[8] "Health 'Care' in the United States": Dr. Barbara Starfield interviewed on CHUO 89.1 FM Ottawa (Canada), The Train.

[9] “Some Big Lies of Science” by Denis G. Rancourt, 2010.

[10] Several books by Peter Breggin. For example, “Toxic Psychiatry”, 1991; and “Brain-Disabling Treatments in Psychiatry”, 2008.

[11] Video of conference talk by Peter Breggin: “The Violence Initiative”, 2010.

[12] “Denis Rancourt on anti-hierarchy activism - Nine-part video mini-series” by Denis G. Rancourt, 2010.

Denis G. Rancourt is a former tenured and full professor of physics at the University of Ottawa in Canada. He practiced several areas of science (including physics and environmental science) which were funded by a national agency and ran an internationally recognized laboratory. He has published over 100 articles in leading scientific journals and several social commentary essays. He developed popular activism courses and was an outspoken critic of the university administration and a defender of student and Palestinian rights. He was fired for his dissidence in 2009. His dismissal case is in court hearings that will extend into 2012.


Anonymous said...



"The report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s National Center for Health Statistics found that 11 percent of Americans over the age of 12 takes an antidepressant, with about 14 percent taking the medication for more than 10 years."

Sounds like a free and glorious citizenry, eh? I'm continually amazed at the psychiatric establishments proclivity to overlook social and philosophical issues and continue to drug patients with impunity, but in a sense I feel that the citizens are complicit in their slavery by accepting the drugs along with the concomitant inhumane social hierarchy/inequalities.

The further we go down the rabbit hole, it appears, does ignorance increase and the hubris of the ruling class magnify. In that aspect I think a social collapse is partially inevitably, and a requirement in order to have the freedom to lay the groundwork for a more anarchic age.

Denis Rancourt said...


Thanks for this great input!

Indeed, note that the post provides a biochemical-physiological mechanism whereby our brains are molded by dominance-hierarchy oppression, as a positive feedback mechanism for the social collapse that you describe. Advancing fascism spirals into inhumane absurdity as individuals are transformed into servile zombies...

See also:

Canadian Education as an Impetus towards Fascism

CW said...

"[...] professional training directs the student’s self-indoctrination to accept the scam of the profession."

Definitely true, to accept and to promote the scam of the profession because the profession as it is view today makes the essence of the individual. To criticize the profession it's to criticize the individual and the individual won't accept a critic of his/her own existence.

Professional corporations which like to say that their main goal is to protect the public are lying because their main goal is mostly to protect their image, their essence, their existence.

Professionalism (of any profession) is really individualist and selfish... and I'm part of it.

Stranger in a Strange Land said...



Levantine said...

Socioeconomic status is the single most dominant predictor of health, and the physiological mechanisms for this causal relation (from socioeconomic status to individual health) continue to be elucidated by population studies and laboratory experiments.

In a stunning discovery that overturns decades of textbook teaching, researchers at the University of Virginia School of Medicine have determined that the brain is directly connected to the immune system by vessels previously thought not to exist.
“It changes entirely the way we perceive the neuro-immune interaction." .....