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The Chronic Fatigue Syndrome Epidemic Cover-up: How a Little Newspaper Solved the Biggest Scientific and Political Mystery of Our Time by [Charles Ortleb]
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Editorial Reviews


"As the scientific establishment and mainstream media begin to take the issue of 'Chronic Fatigue Syndrome' or 'Myalgic Encephalomyelitis' more seriously, it is important not to forget the publisher and editor who, from 1988-1997, devoted his newspaper to bringing the issue out of the closet. Charles Ortleb's compelling history of his newspaper and the work of his pioneering CFS reporter, Neenyah Ostrom, is a must-read for anyone who wants to know the whole disturbing story of an epidemic hidden in plain sight."
                                                                                             --Phyllis Chesler
"Charles Ortleb, as editor-in-chief and publisher of the New York Native, was and remains the Izzy Stone of science reporting.  He was fearless in his pursuit of the origins of the AIDS epidemic and the government's response in the 1980s.  When his newspaper began to diverge from the dogmatic mainstream, however, he was ostracized by the very people he was seeking to inform.  In addition, his laser-like focus in the Native on the simultaneous emergence of so-called "chronic fatigue syndrome"--a topic to which he assigned a full-time reporter, Neenyah Ostrom--was laudable. These disorders remain too much alike to arbitrarily submerge one in favor of the other, as the government has done without blinking for thirty years. Ortleb took considerable risks to profitability by pursuing every avenue of investigation on these matters.  Yet, as much as Ortleb was criticized, the Native was also a "must read" of its time.  When I was reporting my own book on the latter disease, I frequently spied the Native on the desks of high level scientists at the National Institutes of Health.  As much as he made them uncomfortable, everyone in the AIDS research establishment wanted to know what Ortleb was going to report next.  Ortleb's caustic humor and piercing analysis of what he has dubbed "political epidemiology," and "homodemiology" by the Centers for Disease Control alone makes The Chronic Fatigue Syndrome Epidemic Cover-up worth the read.  But the history he recounts here is crucial reading for anyone who missed the Native in its heyday or who didn't "get it" the first time around.  Given the recent rise of infectious disease alarms around the world, The Chronic Fatigue Syndrome Epidemic Cover-up is, additionally, remarkably timely for those who seek to understand what drives the American public health establishment in times of crises. A rollicking, fascinating and important memoir."
    --Hillary Johnson, author of Osler's Web, Inside the Labyrinth of the Chronic Fatigue Syndrome Epidemic

"Charles Ortleb and the New York Native which he so brilliantly led was the absolutely indispensable source for all information--medical, political, personal--in the first five years of the AIDS epidemic when the major media in this country as well as the medical establishment tried so hard to avoid the topic.  Not since I.F. Stone have we seen how important individual investigative journalism could be in breaking through society's silence, when silence indeed equaled death.  It is good to finally have the Native's heroic work put on the historical record for all to see."
           --Michael Denneny, author of Decent Passions and Lovers: The Story of Two Men
"As Alice awoke at the end of the 1951 Walt Disney's adaptation of Lewis Carroll's Alice through the looking glass she realized that it was all just a dream and I must say I felt very much like Alice at the end of this book, only I'm not Alice, this isn't Disney. This Epidemic is very real. It is as real as the political, scientific and medical attacks that Charles and many others have faced in trying to uncover the truth about this Epidemic and as real as the millions of people who globally have been misdiagnosed, mistreated and discriminated against in the biggest medical and scientific scandals of our time. It is also a must read for anyone interested in the Pace Trial."
   --Nicola Jeffery, UK Activist living with diagnoses of Fibromyalgia, ME CFS

From the Author

Interview with Charles Ortleb
How would you describe your book, The Chronic Fatigue Syndrome Epidemic Cover-up?
The Chronic Fatigue Syndrome Epidemic Cover-up is the definitive history of what people call "the AIDS and Chronic Fatigue Syndrome epidemics." But it is about a lot more than that. It is the history of a political and scientific disaster that revolves around the HHV-6 pandemic. The virus, originally found in AIDS patients, has now been linked to dozens of supposedly "mysterious" medical problems that include Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, cancer, multiple sclerosis and autism.  The Chronic Fatigue Syndrome Epidemic Cover-up is about an out-of-control epidemic that now threatens everybody. Anyone reading this interview could already be infected with HHV-6 or know someone who is. And it is transmissible. It doesn't matter if you are white or black, straight or gay. HHV-6 is now everyone's problem. It is the biggest story that the media is not covering. It should be on the front page of The New York Times every single day.

You have described AIDS/CFS science and the HHV-6 cover-up as a giant Bernie Madoff type of scientific Ponzi scheme. What do you mean by that?
A scientific Ponzi scheme begins with a central seminal or foundational scientific fraud and is sometimes built on an infrastructure of smaller scientific frauds. Like the fake dividends issued in a strictly financial Ponzi scheme, a scientific Ponzi scheme issues fake dividends in the form of ongoing fraud-based research often framed as "breakthroughs" and bogus extrapolations which make it look like everything is above board and that what, in reality, is scientific fraud, appears to the rest of the scientific community and the public as good faith progress. Everything always looks like it is working perfectly in a scientific Ponzi scheme, until the moment comes when someone look at the books and blows the whistle.  Hopefully, that game-changing moment for the HIV Fraud Ponzi scheme and HHV-6 cover-up is coming soon.

Why is The Chronic Fatigue Syndrome Epidemic Cover-up so controversial?
A lot of powerful interests who are responsible for this mess are threatened by the real story of HHV-6, Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, autism and AIDS. If enough people read my book, there will be calls for a congressional investigation into everything we've been told about AIDS, Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, HHV-6, and autism. Just for starters. All kinds of class action lawsuits could be launched against the Centers for Disease Control and the National Institutes of Health.
Chronic Fatigue Syndrome is supposedly transmissible. One would expect there to be a massive Chronic Fatigue Syndrome epidemic in the gay community. Where is it?
It's called AIDS. That's the dirty little game the CDC is playing. That's why they can't tell the public the truth about AIDS, Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, autoimmunity, or the dozens of illnesses that are the product of the cover-up involving HHV-6.
Did you know Robert Gallo, the scientist who stole credit for discovering HHV-6?
I spoke with him several times. We reported in my newspaper that he referred to gays as "homos" at a scientific conference. So he is not my biggest fan. The world still doesn't know the extent of Gallo's scientific fraud. It involves the cover-up of the HHV-6 pandemic which now threatens everyone on the planet. Gallo is the Richard Nixon of science. Actually, he is worse.

Why don't Chronic Fatigue Syndrome researchers see the relationship between Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, HHV-6, and AIDS?
They either don't want to see the obvious or they are afraid to.   
Why are they afraid?
They are afraid of the AIDS mafia which would have a fit if CFS is shown to be an overlooked part of the AIDS epidemic. A great deal of power in public health science is held by Anthony Fauci and other people involved with AIDS. I call it the Fauci Gallo Crime Syndicate. They have long arms. They want all scientists to think the way they think. They don't want their work on AIDS to have the rug pulled out from under it. Which is exactly what will happen when people realize that CFS is just another manifestation of AIDS.       
Did you know Randy Shilts?
Actually, I published an article on Harvey Milk in my magazine Christopher Street and that grew into his book on Milk, The Mayor of Castro Street.

What did you think of the Shilts history of AIDS?
Randy got many of the important facts right, but he was kind of taken for a ride by people at the CDC. He wasn't skeptical like a good reporter is supposed to be. He got a lot of the trees right but he totally failed to see the forest. He was a trusting local reporter who was easily browbeaten by authority. He wasn't much of a thinker and his judgement was third-rate. The person he thought was a hero at the CDC, Don Francis, was actually quite arrogant and incompetent. Francis is responsible for a lot of the mess we call "Chronic Fatigue Syndrome." For starters.

How did you get the idea that Chronic Fatigue Syndrome is part of the AIDS epidemic?
If you read my book and learn what I witnessed first-hand, it couldn't be more obvious. It's not rocket science.

Do you think Chronic Fatigue Syndrome should be called myalgic encephalomyelitis?
Veteran AIDS researcher Judy Mikovits calls it "Non-HIV AIDS." That's the best name for now.

Isn't Chronic Fatigue Syndrome a brain disease?
CFS is an "everything disease." Focusing on that hides the rest of the disease. It is multisystemic, just like AIDS. We now know it affects every cell in the body. Calling it a brain disease is another way of distracting attention away from the connection to the AIDS epidemic and the virus they have in common, HHV-6. 

What do you think about the state of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome research?
Most of it is what I call "Denialist Research." A number of scientists are creating the false image that there is no unified epidemic and Chronic Fatigue Syndrome is not transmissible and contagious. That is utter nonsense. They're using things like the microbiome, and genetics to create a smokescreen.
If I am infected with HHV-6, could it be compromising my immune system?
Absolutely. And that's just the beginning. It can also cause cancer and infect your brain. It also infects your circulatory system and can cause serious damage to your heart. HHV-6 is like a quiet epidemic of the Andromeda Strain that nobody wants to talk about.

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