[Doctors and Historical Figures from Today and Through the Ages Weigh In]
In today’s medical arena the term “quack” is often thrown about by those who are the real quacks in mainstream medicine to describe someone who uses herbal and other medical treatments which are not approved by mainstream medicine. However, when one considers the definitions of “quack” and “quackery”, it is easy to see how they can be applied to a great deal of the deceit and fraud found in today’s mainstream medical practices. Historically quacks are mainstream medicine as spoken and written by respected figures of the past.
Today the term “quack” is most aptly defined as someone who offers false hope of recovery or elimination of a health concern through practices, techniques or equipment which has no real chance of resolving the problem. And the practice of “quackery” is probably best defined as the practice of medical fraud or medical deceit.
The term quack originates from the “quacksalver”, which was first coined in the 1600’s when it was used to describe a physician by the name of Paracelsus who used a salve that had mercury in it to treat syphilitic rash. Thus the term “quacksalver”, which was later shortened to “quack”. The derogatory term was applied to Paracelsus because other physicians and healers contended that his salve offered the false promise of a cure while actually only providing temporary symptom relief and ultimately doing more harm than good.
When one looks outside the “just ask your doctor” advertisements we are bombarded with today and the mainstream medical establishments domination of information disseminated in the media, it is actually easy to see how much of today’s patented medicines and other practices also merely manage symptoms, offer false hope for cures and have side effects that may result in more harm to patients. Today and throughout history, many doctors and notable historical figures have pointed out the “quackery” and wrongs found in accepted mainstream medicine.
For example, consider this quote from Dr. Paul M. Koonin, D.D.Sc:
“Well, are you satisfied that WE ARE QUACKS? In the eyes of those who are willing to forgot the present prestige of medicine, such as it is, with all its dignity, its scientific jargon, its pratings of altruism, its great endowment, its well heralded “achievements,” we are most assuredly quacks, professing to do things we cannot do, and yes, taking money under this pretence.”
Dr. Koonin’s quote is echoed by Dr. Dr. J. P. Baldwin, who said “There are more quacks in the orthodox profession than there are outside its ranks.”
Prior to that, the great French physician François Magendie (1783 – 1855) went even further when he famously stated “Medicine is a great humbug:- doctors are merely quacks when they are not charlatans.”
Those doctors are hardly alone. Here is a very small sampling of what other doctors and notable historical figures have said about medicine, doctors and doctoring:
‘Drug companies are not here to bring health to the population but to scam them on one level for vast amounts of money, by treating the symptoms and not addressing the cause.’ -Sir William Osler, MD (1849-1919)
“Modern medicine” may well be defined as “the experimental study of what happens when poisonous chemicals are placed into malnourished human bodies.” – Dr. A. Saul, Contributing Editor, Journal of Orthomolecular Medicine
“Modern medicine, for all its advances, knows less than 10 percent of what your body knows instinctively.” – Deepak Chopra
“I have endeavored to show that there is no real service of humanity in the profession [of medicine] and that it is injurious to mankind.” – Mahatma Gandhi
“If people let the government decide what foods they eat and what medicines they take, their bodies will soon be in as sorry a state as the souls who live under tyranny.” – Thomas Jefferson (1778)
“The vast majority of medicines – more than 90 per cent – only work in 30 or 50 per cent of the people.” – Doctor Allen Roses, worldwide vice-president of genetics at GlaxoSmithKline and academic geneticist from Duke University
“Medicine, the only profession that labors incessantly to destroy the reason for its existence.” – James Bryce
“I firmly believe that if the whole materia medica could be sunk to the bottom of the sea, it would be all the better for mankind, and all the worse for the fishes.” – Oliver Wendell Holmes
“Most diseases are the result of medication that has been applied to relieve and take away a beneficent and warning symptom on the part of Nature.” – Elbert Hubbard
“God heals and the doctor takes the fee.” – Benjamin Franklin
“The doctor of the future will give no medicine but will interest his patients in the care of the human frame, in diet and in the cause and prevention of disease.” – Thomas Edison
“[Medicine is] a collection of uncertain prescriptions the results of which, taken collectively, are more fatal than useful to mankind.” – Napoleon Bonaparte (1769 – 1821)
“Doctors are men who prescribe medicines of which they know little, to cure diseases of which they know less, in human beings of whom they know nothing.” – Voltaire (Francois-Marie Arouet Voltaire)
Though today, mainstream medicine would have us believe that natural healing and medicinal plants which man has lived and developed alongside for all the many eons are quackery the exact opposite is true. A healthy diet and lifestyle, along with minerals, vitamins and other nutrients and natural healing plants, help the body actually heal and control illness with few if any side effects. Unnatural mainstream medicines, on the other hand, are recognized as toxins by the body and that, along with the unnatural ways they often cause the body to perform to mask and control symptoms, results in side effects that lead to yet more illness, more treatments and more medicines in a never ending cycle.
In his book “Lessons from the Miracle Doctors”, noted natural health authority Jon Barron said that it is not uncommon to see a man take as many as 15 different prescribed and over the counter medications daily by the time he reaches the age of 65 – and it all began with one or two conditions which could have been remedied naturally, often with just changes in diet and lifestyle. Almost 2500 years ago, the “father of medicine” Hippocrates observed that “”Nature is the physician of man.” Hippocrates also advised healers to “Leave your medicines in the chemist’s pots if you can cure your patient with food.” Both observations are as valid today as they were in Hippocrates day.
Sadly, today’s mainstream medicine model is a great one profit, but a horrible one for healing and humanity. One has to wonder: exactly when did mortal doctors become gods and God become a quack?
Note: In future installments we will look at examples of how today’s medicines and doctors have become quackery as well as look further at quotes about medicine, doctors and doctoring from doctors and historical figures through the ages. The ones in this article are but a tiny sample – stay tuned!
For more of Tony’s great articles on health, nutrition, and natural healing, visit his website at The Best Years In Life.
In addition, he hosts the Yahoo Oleandersoup Health group of over 2800 members and the CureZone Ask Tony Isaacs – Featuring Luella May forum. Mr. Isaacs and his partner Luella May host The Best Years in Life Radio Show every Wednesday evening on BlogTalk Radio.