Joined: 18 Jan 2006
|Posted: Thu Aug 28, 2008 8:19 pm Post subject: Audio Interview: Liam Scheff & The Guinea Pig Kids
& The Guniea Pig Kids
The Beautiful Truth Show - 28th August, 2008
with special guest writer and journalist Liam Scheff.
Liam Scheff blew the whistle on outrageous medical experiments
with orphaned children. Pharma responded with a determined
smear campaign led by the New York Times. He speaks to
Fintan Dunne about those events and the recent climbdown
on heterosexual transmission by the AIDS establishment.
Broadband Mp3 Audio
Click to Play - If on Dialup just Right-Click,
then 'Save As' to Download and Listen.
By Liam Scheff - New York Press, July 27 - August 2
Mimi Pascual gave the children drugs every day and every night, on schedule, as the doctors ordered. She shook the children awake and popped the pills into their mouths, or squirted a syringe full of ground pill and water to the back of their throats.
She and the other child-care workers made the rounds: midnight, 3 a.m., 5 a.m. Some kids took the pills by mouth, some through nasal tubes, and some through tubes jutting out of their stomachs.
The children didn’t like the drugs. They’d wake up vomiting or with bad diarrhea. But Mimi and the workers at Incarnation Children’s Center had to follow the regimen, or they’d be fired. “The drugs had side effects, everybody knew that,” said Mimi. But the workers were told the drugs were saving the children’s lives.
After a young girl who had just gone on the drugs had a stroke and then quickly died, and another young boy who was put on thalidomide wasted away on a respirator, Mimi stopped believing that the drugs were just saving lives. She believed they were killing the children too.
Mimi Pascual worked at Incarnation Children’s Center for eight years over a nearly 10-year period, taking care of the abandoned HIV-positive children of drug-addicted mothers in New York City’s Washington Heights neighborhood. She started at ICC in 1995, when she was just 17. Mimi was one of two dozen neighborhood women from Washington Heights, Harlem and Inwood Heights who were hired by the Catholic nuns who ran the orphanage for abandoned babies.
Like Mimi, the vast majority were originally from the Dominican Republic, and had no medical background. Some spoke only negligible English. But they were all mothers, aunts, big sisters and grandmothers themselves, used to taking care of large families on a shoestring, to keeping life together under great stress, and, as Mimi tells me, used to “cleaning ass,” a skill that was useful at ICC.
Hired as a child-care worker, she soon found herself a surrogate mother to the children, changing them, feeding them, holding and hugging them—and drugging them.
“At first they were little babies,” Mimi told me. “We changed their diapers and cleaned them up, and played with them. We were told they were ‘special’—because of the HIV. There was a lot of shit and a lot of throwing up.”
“They needed a lot of love,” said Mimi, “and that’s what we gave them.”
Mimi can describe dozens of children in loving detail—the criers, the sweet ones, the hyperactive kids, the clowns and the quiet ones. “We were like their mothers. Some of the child-care workers even adopted children from ICC,” she said. “I wanted to, but I was living at home, and my mother and father didn’t want to take care of another little baby at the time.”
Besides feeding, changing and bathing duties, the child-care workers were also responsible for administering drugs to the infants.
“The nurses would lay out the drugs on the counter. Lots of pills, powders and oral syringes, all labeled for each particular child. We’d pick up the syringe and put it right into the mouth or into the tube if they had one.
“We didn’t like it, but that was our job,” said Mimi. “We were told that they would die without the drugs—and since we were with the kids the most, it was up to us.”
“But over time,” Mimi said, “we began to feel betrayed.”
“In the beginning we were taking care of little abandoned crack babies who had no one, but then it changed. More and more of the kids were there for compliance. They didn’t want to take drugs, or their parents didn’t want to give them, so they got put in ICC.
“None of us ever blamed the kids for refusing. We all saw them throw up like clockwork after taking the pills, and then the diarrhea that followed.
When the kids were all younger—babies—they couldn’t tell us the drugs made them sick. But when they got older they started to tell us, ‘I don’t want to take this ‘cause I can’t go to school, I feel worse when I take it.’”
“We all had doubts about what we were doing,” Mimi said. “But honestly, we did what we were told.”
One of the things Mimi and the other childcare workers noticed was the constantly shifting medicine regime. “Some children got AZT, some didn’t. Then it would switch. Then it was a new drug, then it was a drug that we never heard of.
“We figured it out,” she said. “These were experimental treatments.” Marta, another child-care worker, put it more bluntly, “This is the guinea-pig business,” she said....
Liam takes the NYT to Task:
|Journalism Ethics 101 -
My Conversations with New York Times Reporter Janny Scott
August 3, 2008.
Twenty Questions on Ethics and Standards for the New York Times.
In 2005, I was interviewed by New York Times reporter Janny Scott about the Incarnation Children’s Center (ICC) scandal. My investigation had revealed that orphaned children were being used in taxpayer and Pharma–funded drug studies in a Catholic orphanage in New York City.
The studies involved FDA Black-Box labeled drugs, in high doses and combinations. (The FDA Black Box label indicates that a drug has caused permanent damage or has killed patients taking the drug, at its normal, prescribed dose). Orphans were receiving a half dozen of these drugs at once, at high doses.
My published work featured interviews with the medical director of the ICC, and children, guardians and current and former employees from the drug-test orphanage.
In my reporting, I reviewed and cited the medical literature on the putative Aids drugs and HIV tests used in the ICC orphanage.
I named and reviewed the studies listed in the government’s clinical trials database (clincialtrials.org) that were being conducted at the orphanage and its referring hospitals.
In the course of my reporting, I had also been able to enter the ICC orphanage itself, undercover, with one of the families I was working with, and I reported on what I experienced in meeting the children held there.
The story was followed up by numerous news agencies, and spawned several independent investigations, as well as a BBC documentary (that was later attacked by pro-pharma/drug activists).
The New York Times caught up with the story by mid 2005; Times reporter, Janny Scott, interviewed me by phone and then in an email correspondence that lasted over a month. I supplied her with referenced material, and also with contact information, phone numbers and names for my inside sources (as well as my sources permission and agreement to be interviewed by the Times).
Ms. Scott (and her junior writing partner, Leslie Kaufman), also had access to all the materials already published on the ICC story by myself and independent news agencies [1, 2, 3].
She took my interview, sources and information, but suppressed all of it in her reporting. She did not cite me correctly relating to the publication of my article. She misquoted me from emails that I sent her, and she actively suppressed the sources I gave her, who had inside information about the ICC trials.
Her report did not list a single negative drug side-effect, FDA drug warning, or any of the actual studies being done at the ICC; nor did it feature the testimony of any parent or guardian of a child who was being asked or forced to take these drugs.....
The NY Times Whitewash:
|Belated Charge Ignites Furor Over AIDS Drug Trial
By JANNY SCOTT AND LESLIE KAUFMAN - July 17, 2005
It was seen as one of the great successes of AIDS treatment. In the late 1980's and early 1990's, hundreds of children in New York City were dying of AIDS. The only approved drugs were for adults, and many of the patients were foster children. So doctors obtained permission to include foster children in what they regarded as promising drug trials.
By 2000, the number of children under 20 who died of AIDS in the city that year dropped to 13 from more than 100 per year less than a decade before.
But now, just as the trials are receding into history, they are coming under intense scrutiny. A federal agency is investigating whether guidelines for including foster children in trials were violated. The city's child welfare administration has opened an independent inquiry into whether children were harmed.
And when the head of the child welfare system testified about the trials at a City Council hearing in May, angry spectators shouted him down.
All this is happening despite the fact that there is little evidence that the trials were anything but a medical success. Most of the questions have arisen from a single account of abuse allegations -- given by a single writer about people not identified by real names, backed up with no official documentation as supporting proof, and put out on the Internet in early 2004 after the author was unable to get the story published anywhere else.
The story accused doctors of brutally experimenting on foster children, most of them black, Latino or poor. It said they had poisoned them with toxic drugs, sometimes against their parents' will and without even being certain they were sick.
The charges jumped from Web site to Web site, then into The New York Post and into a documentary shown on the BBC. The documentary alarmed black civil rights activists and City Council members, who charged racism.
Physicians and federal health officials involved in the trials have strongly defended their work. They say hundreds, perhaps thousands, of children benefited; many of those were children not in foster care. To have withheld promising drugs from sick children just because they were in foster care would have been inhumane, the doctors say.
They say they obtained legal permission for the children's participation, either from the biological parents or child welfare officials, in all but a small number of cases. Numerous doctors interviewed said they knew of no foster child who died as a result of the trials.
''For those people who believe that these kids were harmed, I'd like to say, 'What is the evidence?''' said Dr. William Borkowsky, a pediatrician at Bellevue Hospital Center who took part in the trials. ''And better yet, 'Is there evidence that they were helped?' There is very impressive evidence that they were helped.''
The most thorough of the investigations will not be completed for months. In the meantime, some critics' suspicions have been stoked by admissions by city officials that their own records are inadequate or missing. The city's child welfare agency, the Administration for Children's Services, which has been through four changes in administration since the trials began, cannot even say conclusively how many foster children were involved.
More worrisome, the agency now expects that the current independent investigation will find that there are inadequate records of parental consent.
''We don't believe we have all the permissions by any means,'' said Sharman Stein, director of communications for the children's services agency.
Already, one federal agency, the Office of Human Research Protections, found in June that one New York hospital had approved four of the trials without gathering enough information about the selection of foster children as subjects, or about the process for getting their parents' or guardians' permission. It made no finding as to whether any children were harmed or selected improperly.
Whatever the outcome, the controversy has already demonstrated the power of a single person armed only with access to the Internet and an incendiary story to put major institutions on the defensive. The story taps a combustible mix of fears: the suspicions of some activists that AIDS is not necessarily caused by H.I.V. and that AIDS drugs do not necessarily help, and the belief of some black people that the medical establishment does not always have their interests at heart.....
New AidsIsOver Forum Section
Minds are like parachutes.
They only function when open.