The hemolytic streptococcus is a micro-organism with the reputation of being a dangerous invader of the human body. It is considered a real menace to health. Observations have verified the fact that this germ is frequently harbored by the well and the sick. Because it is harbored by the well, it is said "unsuspected dissemination becomes a serious possibility." Fifty per cent. of normal throats are said to harbor these germs. Ninety per cent. of normal persons harbor them in their tonsils; in eighty per cent. of normal persons they are found in the depths of the tonsils; in one hundred per cent. of normal persons they are found in the crypts of the tonsils. It is remarkable that any of us are alive.
Large numbers of streptococci must be constantly passing into the alimentary tract. Furthermore, these same and other "dangerous types of bacteria" can reach the stomach through the medium of food. But hemolitic streptococci are not found in the, feces. They are even absent from the feces of scarlet fever patients, who almost always harbor large number of these organisms in the throat. What becomes of these hemolitic streptococci? Are they readily destroyed by some protective mechanism in this part of the body? Gastric juice of normal acidity kills streptococci in five minutes. It has also been scientifically proved that hemolytic streptococci do not thrive in a fecal mixture at body temperature. The germ is not, therefore, primarily responsible for enteric disturbances.
"Carriers" are individuals, more or less healthy, who harbor and spread the germs of some "disease." We are told that every epidemic develops a number of "carriers." These people, while accused of harboring germs of "disease" do not themselves have the "disease." They are declared to be immune. Yet if it were possible to prove it, many so-called carriers die in every epidemic. These are the subjects medical writers refer to when they tell about how the "flu" epidemic carried off the strong and robust rather than the more delicate and less robust.
The condition named "carrier" is gastro-intestinal decomposition. The germs live and grow in the weakened digestive tract. Impaired secretions permit them to thrive there. When one is enervated, and has his powers of secretion and excretion impaired--when the body's digestive functions have given out--the body loses protective power and germs develop in the digestive tract and produce decomposition.
The man who has built himself into a seething compost is in line for developing any of the so-called communicable diseases. The condition can be corrected.
If a germ is the specific cause of "disease," it "will always cause "disease"; but if it is found in health and "disease," which proves that it needs an ally, the germ cannot be regarded as cause. If typhoid, diphtheria, cholera, pneumonia and other so-called "infectious diseases" are solely the result of microbes, and microbes are everywhere, and microbe carriers are in every community, if they are found in people who have not had and do not subsequently develop the "infection" the microbe is supposed to produce, how can we attribute these conditions to microbes? Human groups swarm with tubercle bacilli. They are found in many kinds of food. In spite of this, not every one develops tuberculosis. The robust and vigorous laugh at these little fellows.
The supposed causitive germs of so-called "disease" are not only found in those who do not have the "disease," but they are frequently missing from those who do have the "disease." The presence of a cause without its "disease" and the existence of a "disease" without its cause, is the equivalent of effectless causes and causeless effects. Nowhere outside of medical science are such things possible.
"If in diphtheria, the bacillus is not found, the illness is renamed something else," says the Encyclopedia Britannica. Dr. Beddow Bayly says that the diphtheria bacillus is missing in 14 per cent. of cases of clinical diphtheria. (London Lancet, Sept. 1898) ; the Report of the Royal Commission on Vivisection (1912) says this germ is absent in 20 per cent.
of such cases, while Sir Wm. Osier reports them to be absent in 28 to 40 per cent. of cases. A few years ago the British Ministry of Health instructed physicians thus: "The notification of cases of diphtheria under the Infectious Disease Acts, should be limited to persons actually suffering from diphtheria, i.e., those exhibiting clinical signs of the disease, with or without bacterial evidence of its presence."
During the 1918-19 influenza epidemic the profession was forces to abandon Pfeiffer's bacillus as the cause of influenza. It was often absent where it should not have been, that is, it was not associated with clinically diagnosed influenza, and it had the additional bad habit of appearing unaccountably in the throats and secretions of healthy persons. Indeed this germ was found in the sputum of 35 per cent. of 132 normally healthy men examined at Camp Pike.
Walter R. Hadwen, M.D., M.R.O.S., of England, in a lecture at a public meeting in Los Angeles, California, June 16, 1921, quoted Dr. Muthu of the Mendip Hill Sanatorium, who, he said is "perhaps one of the most experienced men in tuberculosis," in England, as saying, "In fifty per cent. of his cases he could not find tubercle bacilli at all." Dr. Hadwen himself declared: "Nobody has ever found a tubercle bacillus in the earliest stages of tuberculosis." It is stated by good authority that the germs sometimes put in their appearance only after the tuberculosis has existed for two years, and that in some cases they cannot even be found after death. It must be evident that tuberculosis is not due to germs.
Germs are rarely found in cases of the most fatal types of tuberculosis--the so-called hasty or galloping consumption. On the other hand, those cases of tuberculosis in which large quantities of bacilli are found are usually the chronic types and frequently end in recovery.
Strangely enough, the very "diseases"--colds, scarlet fever, measles, chicken pox and small pox, to mention only a few--which afford the most favorable field for study, are just the ones in which the causal organism is unknown.
All efforts to produce so-called "specific diseases" in man by introducing germs into the body have failed. There was the celebrated attempt of Dr. Waite to kill Colonel Peck. Waite fed his victim cultures of all the supposed "disease" producing germs that he could secure, both home grown and imported. These cultures included cultures of the germs of the most "deadly diseases" known, but Colonel Peck seemed to thrive on them. Waite was finally forced to resort to chloroform and a pillow to get his victim out of the way.