December 14, 2017

Cancer Notes


The US cancer-industrial complex has the same ideology as that of government regulators: It’s a combination of direct corporate corruption and the ideology of “managing” a certain level of cancer “risk” and “tolerance”. This adds up to a complete focus on detection and treatment, the latter having to be done on a corporate profiteering basis. (This latter emphasis is also a combination of corruption and ideology.) Studying the environmental causes of cancer and working for prevention (as the World Health Organization’s IARC does*) is ruled out as unscience and unpolicy. This is the cancer branch of the corporate science paradigm. Only alleged genetic causality can be researched, and only gene therapy would constitute acceptable prevention policy. The only place where there’s any controversy within the system is over some aspects of detection, for example mammograms.
The few exceptions to this, such as with cigarettes and lung cancer, were forced upon the system by grassroots movements. Acknowledging what the system long knew, that smoking causes cancer in the smoker, didn’t threaten the paradigm as much because it’s easy to place all the blame on the smoker for his own cancer. By contrast, second-hand smoke has been more fraught (and Big Tobacco deniers like Henry Miller are still active to this day) because that’s an environmental cause.
This war has a strange religious element. Corporate cancer researchers have explicitly named “bad luck” as a significant cause of cancer. This isn’t a scientific concept but a pathetic attempt to fill the void which even the gross embellishment of the evidence for some genetic causality hasn’t been able to fill. The anti-scientific and pro-cancer goal is to deny the environmental causality at all costs. (The “bad luck” thesis was quickly debunked by a study done according to the classical falsificationist scientific method.)
It’s religiously weird, though, in that religious preachers usually want to give people explanations for pressing things which they can’t explain on their own. Today’s corporate scientism tries to do this with the ideology of biological determinism. It’s junk science, but for those willing to believe the lies it could possibly fulfill that religious need. Genetic deterministic theories of cancer would fit in here.
So it’s significant that, as committed as corporate science is to finding genetic causes for almost all cancer, it nevertheless has failed so badly even on its own terms that it’s had to resort to such a transparent admission of bankruptcy as enshrining “bad luck” as the state of its science. Of course bad luck doesn’t explain anything to anyone, so it’s not only laughably bad science, but bad religion as well.
I’m a real anti-cancer researcher and I get paid nothing. There’s lots of fake cancer researchers who get paid millions.
*Although the WHO as a whole has been consistently pro-poison, the IARC is out of step with the dominant corporate/reductionist ideological framework, instead emphasizing environmental factors in cancer causation:
“Emphasis is placed on elucidating the role of environmental and lifestyle risk factors and studying their interplay with genetic background in population-based studies and appropriate experimental models. This emphasis reflects the understanding that most cancers are, directly or indirectly, linked to environmental factors and thus are preventable.”
The proposition that cancer is preventable runs directly counter to the dominant science ideology which views cancer as arising from genetic determinism and/or “bad luck” and the only acceptable response to be massively expensive and interventionist “cures” supervised by Big Drug and other corporate sectors. This is why the corporate scientific establishment, regulators like the EPA and EFSA, and the corporate media all despise the IARC. And this is why Reuters has embarked on a vendetta against the agency.
I often ponder the irony that even among “decent” people the great heroic metaphor is “curing cancer”, while someone like me who has dedicated my life to preventing cancer is beyond the pale. That’s because even the good people do demand their worthless expensive destructive junk, and the basic template applies not just to corporate-controlled institutions but to everyone. Even cancer must be dealt with only within the framework which exalts productionism, consumerism, technocracy, corporate rule as normal and normative. Even efforts against cancer must never hinder this imperative. Among the people of the system, its supporters and its tacit followers, there is consensus on this.


  1. Further reading:



    By far the biggest elephant in the room on this topic is the relationship between diet and disease. The science in favor of a largely or fully plant-based diet (whole food) is beyond strong, it is revolutionary. We can reverse diseases that began in childhood (heart disease) in a matter of months to a couple of years, just with dietary intervention. People are alive today because of this.

    All one needs to know about today’s medicine and science is that this revolution hasn’t been fully embraced, widely adopted and taught – the last thing this institutionalizes system wants is real results that serve actual people.

    But as you say, the cultists believe that corporate science is what science “is”, so the cannibalistic rituals of our day continue.

    Comment by Bob — December 14, 2017 @ 2:14 pm

    • Yes, here too it seems humanity needs to build and propagate the new framework from outside the existing system. It’s good that all the necessary criteria overlap: Agroecology and the wholesome diet that goes with it is the solution in every case.

      I’ve read both of those pieces before and they’re good; I recommend them to anyone else reading this.

      Comment by Russ — December 14, 2017 @ 2:30 pm

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