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Confessions of a Medical Heretic (Part Two)

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Duty to Warn

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 By Gary G. Kohls, MD

 

Last week I wrote about some of the ethical concerns that I have had with the modern medical profession. Over my 40 years of practicing medicine I have experienced increasing frustration with its direction, mainly because the business of medicine has been increasingly distorting the ethics I was taught in medical school. The profession has become increasingly difficult to recognize over the 40 year span.

Like many other physicians who have tried to take the Hippocratic Oath seriously (“first do no harm”), I also tried to resist the increasing corporate influences that eventually made the once-honorable practice of medicine into a crass profit-making industry. I makes me sad to report that outside forces have gradually made us physicians into computer bound high class technicians that are largely prescribers/providers of Big Pharma’s often toxic and always unaffordable drugs. In the current profit-above-all-else era, it is not even remotely possible for us physicians to be the compassionate healers of the long-gone era that I knew.

Way too often, the money-making Big Business of medicine is being controlled by institutional shareholders  (who demand increasing dividends or increasing shareholder value) whose CEOs are often amoral Masters of Business Administration graduates who are equally at home leading Wall Street banks, tobacco companies, weapons manufacturers or brothels – or big clinics or hospitals. In this era the term “business ethics” (just like “military justice”) is an oxymoron.

So last week, when my column deadline approached and I discovered that I had written twice as many words as my editor allowed (a theoretical 1600 word limit per week), I had to quit writing and figure out how to cut the column in half. (I also realized that the title could be – and should be – the title of a book-length treatise, but that notion will have to wait for some future time. For now, what follows approximates the last half of last week’s unbridged column.

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No Real Choices

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As the country prepares to release a sigh of relief at the prospect of George W Bush finally leaving office, I think I will continue to hold my breath.  This has been, by almost all accounts the worst presidency in our history but few of us were willing to stand up and demand that he be removed from office.   By now, we have all realized that congress has neither the will nor the courage to impeach and then prosecute this entire administration.

So what did our laziness and inattention buy us?  As a nation we stand poised on the edge of losing our sovereignty to the North American Union.  Our own government is working actively to dismantle our Republic and replace it with a dictatorship, replete with internment camps for dissenters.  We have stood by while one law after another has been passed that directly infringed on our civil liberties and rights, and have been compliant accomplices in wars of aggression against other sovereign nations.

We have become a nation of cowards.  Even when we, as a nation, have been shown the lies and deceptions used to promote these wars we cowered in fear:  better to fight them “over there” than here.  The problem is that the people we are warring with never attacked us.  So just who is it that we are so fearful of in Iraq?  We don’t know.  The government either can’t or won’t identify who this enemy was in Iraq that made us attack them.  

We are threatened continually with another attack if we don’t allow the government to illegally spy on us, to detain us without charges, to rifle through our personal business and to compile dossiers on each of us as they prepare for martial law.  And, like the dutiful sheeple we are, many of us exclaim, “Well!  If you haven’t done anything wrong you shouldn’t mind if they do that”.  Its precisely because I haven’t done anything wrong that I do mind. 

I find it strange that the only place threats of attacks ever come from are from our own government.  Could it be that in some perverse way they are telling us that they will attack us if we don’t comply?  After all, these threats are always so vague and even when they do claim to thwart an attempted attack, we never really quite know who, where, how or when.  We’re only told that the attack was thwarted……..only no one seems to know anything about it but them!

I would like to think that the election of a new president from any quarter would bring relief and a restoration of our constitution and bill of rights.  It won’t.  We are given choices of whom to vote for, but only choices based on pre-selected candidates that will continue the destruction of our country.  Which should give you a clue as to why Ron Paul is misrepresented in the polls and why his name was crossed off the ballots in New York. 

In the end, we have no real choices.  No matter who is elected, that person will simply continue with the plans to merge us with Mexico and Canada, and life as we have known will change forever.  Not one of the candidates who will appear on the ballot will do one thing to restore our government to one governed by the people. 

In the end, the fact that we have no real choices is our own fault.  It was our apathy and laziness, our inattention to the monster that our government had become that allowed any of this to happen.  We have only ourselves to blame.

Marti Oakley  copyright 2008

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