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07/17/2005

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Comments

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Palooka

"Great comments!

But let me start with clearing up a misunderstanding. Two consecutive comments read: "I would like everyone to know that I wrote a comment critical of Posner's view on AIDS treatment that was apparently censored from the blog." "My last comment was intercepted with a message that a feature had been enabled to allow Posner to approve posters. The comment has yet to appear." There is no censorship of our blog. There is a feature that enables us to disable comments, but we have never used it and do not plan to use it. Also, we don't read comments as they come in, but only en masse when we are ready to respond to them at the end of the week. So there is no screening."

I once had a comment blocked, but soon after I was able to post comments again. That was many months ago. Maybe the same happened to Corey. Maybe it is some kind of spam filter. I'm not sure if that helps resolve the issue, but the commenter is likely telling the truth, though he is mistaken that it's intentional censorship.

Corey

What happened was that I wrote a comment, hit
submit, and got a message about a moderator function having been turned on. I didn't use
offensive language or anything. It apparently
happened to a couple people, but has not happened since. If nothing was changed mid-week, then it looks and sounds like a software bug.

No big deal if it wasn't done purposefully.
There was just no way to tell at the time.

David

The same thing happened to me that happened to Corey. The "approval" message appeared when I submitted my comment, but the comment never appeared on the blog. I waited two days before posting the message that my comment had been apparently "censored." Perhaps it was a software bug; I would suggest the new "feature" be checked out. I would also ask Judge Posner to explain how this approval feature works, because apparently only some comments trigger it. Like Corey's, my comment did not contain offensive language, though it was highly critical of Judge Posner's view of AIDS treatment.

David

To the substance: I simply cannot condone Judge Posner's view, which he himself calls "heartless," opposing discounted drugs for African AIDS victims. First, these drugs do not cost the west anything: they are very cheap to produce, and the drug companies are giving them away at cost, understanding that many African victims cannot afford the market price and will die a horrible death without them.

While, of course, there is a concern that infected individuals will spread the virus, that should be addressed with education programs and condom distrubutions, not with condemning millions of people to die a horrible and unnecessary death. If the spread of the infection becomes completely uncontrollable, quarantine would be a more humane solution than non-treatment. The suggestion that we should just let victims die, when they can be saved at basically no cost to western taxpayers, is shocking.

Brian H

Congratulations for glancing at the elephant in the living room. From an epidemiological point of view, providing a life-lengthening course of treatment which does not eliminate infectiousness is the absolute worst possible strategy; nothing could be designed to better maximize the spread of the disease -- or, for that matter, to better assist in its evolution into a more virulent form.

Given the reality that this course of events is politically inevitable, there is a desperate urgency in developing BOTH a vaccine and a cure (meaning TOTAL elimination of infectiousness as well as of symptoms.) Even reducing it to the level at which we now hold influenza at bay is insufficient. The medical solutions must be total. Otherwise we will see the continuation and acceleration of current trends: more infections, deaths, and economic-social ruin.

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