Jan 03 2009

Grasping At A Deadly, Evil Folly

Published by at 11:58 am under All General Discussions,Stem Cell Debate

I have written extensively about the evils of Embryonic Stem Cell Research (the killing of young human beings for spare parts) verses the proven rewards of Adult Stem Cell Research. With the liberal left now taking the reigns of power one would expect the gates of Hell to swing wide open as greedy people attempt to mine the needs of the desperately ill for wealth and fame.

But interestingly, there may be a window of opportunity for conservatives to do something good and stop America from becoming the inventor of the human spare parts factory – the embryonic version of a concentration camp. Apparently some people are starting to listen and think about what it means politically to establish factories of human beings, from which to try and grow spare parts:

Both President-elect Barack Obama and Democratic Congressional leaders have made repealing Bush administration restrictions announced in 2001 a top priority. But they have yet to determine if Mr. Obama should quickly put his stamp on the issue by way of presidential directive, or if Congress should write a permanent policy into statute.

The debate is not academic. Democrats who oppose abortion say such a legislative fight holds the potential to get the year off to a difficult beginning, even though the outcome is certain given solid majorities in both the House and the Senate for expanded embryonic stem cell research.

“It is a very divisive issue, and it is a tough way to start,” said Senator Ben Nelson, a moderate Democrat from Nebraska. “You don’t want to stumble out of the box.”

In addition, many of the Democratic gains in Congress, particularly in the House, have come in more conservative areas, with strategists estimating that up to 70 Democrats could find themselves in competitive races in 2010. Those potentially vulnerable lawmakers provide another consideration for leaders weighing whether to set an early test vote on what for some is a politically sensitive subject back home.

What is stunning is these vultures continue to chase this white rabbit called embryonic stem cell research, even though the data shows the embryos are dying for nothing:

Last year, it seemed that the human embryo dispute was about to become moot. Two groups of researchers, followed shortly by a third, independently reported that they could convert human skin cells into embryonic stem cells, bypassing embryos altogether. And immediately, the field of embryonic stem cell research began to explode. Laboratories that had steered clear of the field because of the sheer difficulty of working within the constraints of the ban on federal financing realized they could simply make their own stem cells from skin cells and study them, with no impediments.

But stem cells from human embryos are still very much needed, researchers say. 

That last line is pure BS. There is no genetic code in the embryonic stem cells that are not also in the adult stem cells. Once you can control gene expression, you can do it with the transformed skin cells just as easily. What these ‘journalists’ don’t report is how abysmal the embryonic stem cell myth has panned out. 

For those who want to know, verses be lied to by people salivating over the money they will be raking in over the dead embryos, here are some basic facts.

Scientists have been working at a rapid pace over the past year to refine a process that allows them to replicate human embryonic stem cells, without the controversial use of a human embryo. It involves genetically reprogramming adult stem cells to an embryonic, or pluripotent, state.

Already, scientists have pinpointed a number of advantages IPS cells could have over embryonic cells. For one, an IPS cell manufactured from an adult patient’s own stem cell would be an exact genetic match — so unlike an embryonic cell from a donor, it could theoretically be reproduced and reintroduced into the patient without risk of immune rejection.

And more here:

Embryonic stem cells to date have had limited success in animal tests and has yet to produce a single viable treatment in humans. For that matter, they have not yet been safe enough to enter into any human clinical trials. One difficulty is because of their pluripotency, they become disorganized and produce teratomas (tumors) that lead to cancer. Also because embryonic stem cells come from another human, there is the risk of immune rejection. 

Adult stem cells, which include umbilical cord blood stem cells, have provided benefits in over 70 diseases based on peer-reviewed published reports. From helping people with brain cancer, diabetes, spinal cord injury, heart disease, Parkinson’s, sickle cell anemia, lupus and others. An adult stem cell treatment recently cured a man with multiple sclerosis and he has been MS free for 5 years now. The advantage of adult stem cells is that they do not form teratomas, and often the stem cells used to treat the patient are their own, therefore avoiding any immune rejection issues, and there is no big money involved.

Note that the embryonic stem cells are not safe for human trials, yet the come from the destruction of humans. Anyone who doesn’t see the deadly hypocrisy is as blind as a Nazi or Jihadist who believes Jews are apes and therefore can be killed, burned in ovens or gassed. Sorry to be blunt, but that is a scientific fact. Embryos are human beings, legally distinct from the mother (just apply the legally accepted genetic testing used in courts across the land). To believe the embryos are not human is to demonstrate a criminal level of ignorance.

So why do some people continue to promote what has been a dead end?

Curiously, another unknown in this debate is the need for human eggs for this embryonic and cloning research. Most eggs are donated by IVF (in vitro fertilization) patients, but a growing source are young healthy women. How are these young women enticed to donate their eggs? Money. Ads are placed on college campuses stating $50,000 or $100,000 for egg donations. This is why feminist organizations have voiced a great concern that women will be sought out has embryo farms.

What kind of human race are we becoming? Why are we letting the all mighty dollar – and fear mongers preying on the ill – push us into becoming equivalent to the very evil that too many of our fellow Americans have fought and died to stop over the years? We fought to stop evil from turning this Earth into Hell, where a master race derived sustenance from inferior races. And now instead of sub-human jews in ovens we have sub-human embryos in petri dishes waiting to be sacrificed for others. I fail to see any critical difference in either example.

The history of stem cell research, under George W Bush’s moral wisdom, has shown we don’t need factories of young humans grown so we can rip their early bodies apart and suck out the cells.  Cells which will create their organs, tissues, brain, heart and – yes – soul.

There is a physical tie between the flesh and the soul, we all know this. Break that bond and the soul departs the flesh. It is a tie that is colored and shaped by our genes. This cord between the spiritual and the flesh is written in our DNA – in our stem cells.  In all our cells.  Except to allow that soul to live, grow, experience, learn and share its gifts we must protect the human being. It matters not whether the human is 6 hours old, 6 weeks old or 6 months old – it needs our protection and support.

I am not religious, but I am spiritual. And I know each individual’s unique perspective and characteristics are created at inception. Never to be recreated again. While life can create infinite copies of the animal, it only creates one instance of the individual. People who want to explore our spiritual tie to reality should begin  by understanding how that tie is created between the individual soul and the individual’s body.

Between the social conservatives panning Evolution and DNA, to the Scientologists who think medicine (and therefore biology) is myth, we have a generation of people who deny reality in a lame attempt to understand our ties to it. Why are we here on Earth? While I don’t know the answer, I do know the wrong answers. We are not here to hide from reality and make up lies to suit our quirks and greed. We are not here to make up excuses to destroy each other for personal gain.

If we are, than I am on the wrong planet. I hope I am not. And while this ghoulish rush to destroy life alarms me to my core, there are others out there on a different path. They are the ones exploring the power of adult stem cells to help humanity.

Now we have to decide as a nation, as a sentient race, which path do we want to be remembered for taking. Now we must chose who we are, and who we will be, and what kind of world we will be leaving our children. The legacy of humanity is on the line – our collective soul is being defined.

8 responses so far

8 Responses to “Grasping At A Deadly, Evil Folly”

  1. Agreed.

    What I find most disheartening is that when it comes to issues like this, I tend to agree with a lot of conservatives.

    What angers me is the stridency of some, which is off-putting, and the gross strategic incompetence that the right is showing. Worse, when people try to point that out, the right either stays quiet, or attacks those who try to rectify the stridency and strategic incompetence.

  2. The Macker says:

    “Now we have to decide as a nation, as a sentient race, which path do we want to be remembered for taking.” –

    That is a powerful piece. Your intelligent grasp of this issue is sorely lacking in the moronic MSM and even among many otherwise well informed conservatives. Your intellectual leadership might inspire others looking for the real arguments in this important struggle. Thanks.

  3. Wayne at Jeremiah Films says:

    I have linked to your article from BlogWatch: Unborn Life

    God Bless your efforts bringing this to light.

  4. BarbaraS says:

    The horrible thing is that once the liberals decide embryos are not adequate for research purposes they will go for the older unwanted babies. Where will it end? By eliminating and using people for research that they consider disposable? We are already on the slippery slope with abortion on demand. Deep in their hearts the libs want to eliminate people except for themselves, of course. Everyone else is expendable. That’s one of the reasons why they latched onto carbon dioxide as ruining the environmnet in global warming. Humans breathe out carbon dioxide you know.

  5. Jeff Stone says:

    “What is stunning is these vultures continue to chase this white rabbit called embryonic stem cell research, even though the data shows the embryos are dying for nothing”

    It was not lightly that the term Culture of Death was used.

    Great Blog
    Excellent Post

  6. AJStrata says:


    Thanks – sorry for the delay in releasing your comment. You should be able to post as needed now.


  7. ReprogrammingDoc says:

    I’m going to venture in here and throw in my two cents in hopes that you wrote this piece in earnest, not realizing the scientific implications of your accusations and postulations. However, I must say, first and foremost, for the integrity of this piece and any others you’ve written on human embryonic stem cells, you are not a scientist. As such, it is not only unfair for you to make assumptions, but what’s worse is that you are actually distributing your opinion as fact. Describing human embryonic stem cell research as “the killing of young human beings for spare parts” is not only inaccurate, but entirely untrue. It is because of people like yourself that human embryonic stem cells have become synomous with the idea of scientists growing a baby ‘matrix-style’ and carving it up into little pieces, throwing away the rest. This is NOT what human embryonic stem cell research is in ANY sense.

    I agree that there may well be ethical issues in terms of the ways that eggs (oocytes) and embryos are obtained by SOME groups, but I can personally attest to the fact that NO respectable scientific group/institution gets eggs that go towards stem cell research by plastering ads at colleges. Furthermore, the restrictions in 1st world countries are so strict, embryos can only legally be obtained through a LONG process of checking, ethical commitees, and special arrangements to ensure privacy and professionalism. The embryos that have been created and are being created in the US, UK and what we would refer to as ‘the western world’ are from IVF and are obtained under the strictest of ethical guidelines. These are not taken as sperm and egg donations for the specific purpose of making stem cells, these are embryos that are essentially ‘left overs’ from the IVF procedure. For those who don’t know what I’m talking about, IVF stands for in vitro fertilization and is a technology that allows people who are unable to reproduce naturally for whatever reason to have a shot at having a child that is biologically and genetically their own. In the process, the woman is given drugs that promote the release of many eggs in a single cycle rather than just one. These eggs, usually in the range of 5, are then combined in the laboratory with the man’s sperm. Unfortunately, this process is very expensive, very time consuming, and doesn’t always work. This is why they get out 5 eggs instead of just one. Also, after embryo formation occurs, the IVF doctors are able to examine the embryo and test it for diseases and abnormalities. Not all the fertilized eggs will be healthy, so the doctor(s) will choose the healthiest embryo for implantation into the woman’s uterus.

    So, what happens to the rest? They go in the freezer. Fingers crossed, that embryo results in a healthy baby, but if the procedure fails for whatever reason, any remaining healthy embryos will be thawed and the next embryo can be impanted. As you can imagine, this is a very highly optimized science and for some, it works the first time, leaving 4+ fertilized eggs in the freezer. Typically, they will be stored there for up to 5 years, after which point, with informed consent, the man and woman are given the opportunity to put the remaining embryos towards stem cell research. What happens if they don’t want to? What happens if they read your blog and ignorantly think, ‘hmmm…I don’t want them making a baby from my embryo and chopping it up’? I’ll tell you, they throw them away.

    While you’re bashing human embryonic stem cell research, scientists are essentially taking what would have gone into the trash and turning it into life saving research. Although I get that you don’t understand the science, and despite your ‘non-religious’ viewpoint that purports rather ironically that “There is a physical tie between the flesh and the soul, we all know this”, I’d like you to know from someone that does this stuff firsthand that, unfortunately, at this point in time, human embryonic stem cells are still necessary (that’s no BS). They are the ‘gold standard’ of pluripotent cells with the ability to differentiate into ANY cell type and divide INFINITELY in culture (unlike your highly touted adult stem cells). Let me try to put it to you differently, making non-embryo derived stem cells from adult tissue (currently known as induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells) without human embryo derived stem cells (aka human embryonic stem (hES) cells) is like trying to make diamonds from coal without having a diamond as a reference point. As you know, through science, we can actually make flawless diamonds now, cheaply even. And I believe, with more interest, more time, and more support, stem cell scientists like myself can help to make stem cells that are non-embryo derived that are even better than those derived from IVF left overs.

    Believe it or not, I am someone who works tirelessly to end the use of human embryo derived stem cells by working towards the creation of SAFE induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells. As of right now, there is no clinically safe, reproducible way of going about it. The most effective way involves using retroviruses and viruses that are derived from HIV because these viruses are VERY effective at integrating into the DNA and upregulating the appropriate genes to convert a skin cell into a cell that is functionally equivalent to an embryonic stem cell. However, you don’t want one of these cells transplanted into your body. In mice, cells created in this way were used to make new, baby mice and they found that 20% of them were covered in tumours. That’s 1 in 5. Do you really want us to throw away the ‘gold standard’ and just get to work with cancer causing cells? I didn’t think so. What I do is try to cause the same changes that these viruses do, without using viruses, without actually changing the DNA at all, but only the way in which it is read. However, the science in this area is still in its infancy. This is in large part due to a lack of funding. I myself, despite being a California native, am forced to work in the UK as funding in the US is so limited. I can only hope that with Obama in now, we will move forward at a more rapid pace.

    And, before you go saying things like ‘adult stem cells have proven uses, embryonic stem cells do not’ to discount the research that has been done into hES cells, you should dig a little deeper. Adult stem cells are great if you want blood, muscle or bone, but what if you’re like my grandfather who passed away a few years ago who suffered from Alzheimer’s, a currently incurable neurodegenerative disease, or my younger brother who suffers from Type 1 diabetes, a disease that requires pancreatic beta-islet cells to breakdown glucose properly, or what about people who become paralyzed? There’s no adult stem cell cure for them.

    However, Geron, a CA based company, is already in clinical trials for an embryonic stem cell treatment that can cure paralysis if they can catch you within one week of spinal cord injury, and they are also working furiously closer to a hES cell treatment for those with diabetes. Ironically, if you want to find a business that is actually taking money from patients and giving them little in return, look no further than the fast growing adult stem cell companies that offer to freeze your newborn’s umbilical cord. They offer to save your child’s ‘umbilical cord blood stem cells’ for a few thousand dollars, leading you to believe that without doing so, you are potentially putting your child at risk in the future. While these companies spend hundreds of thousands on marketing, they are making millions off of scared parents-to-be. And although umbilical cord blood stem cells might sound like they’d be close to, if not the same as embryonic stem cells, don’t be fooled, they’re not. They have yet to show that they can actually be clinically used for much more than making patient matched blood and blood progenitor cells.

    Lastly, I just want to say, for all those interested enough (or perhaps bored enough) to read all of what I’ve written and still feel strongly against human embryonic stem cell research, fair enough. However, I’d still bet money that if you or someone close to you was lying in a hospital bed dying and they said “we can save them with embryonic stem cell technology,” you wouldn’t say “no”, you wouldn’t say “God doesn’t want him to live if it means using stem cells” instead you’d be glad that there are people out there willing to devote the time and thought to making these technologies possible. I can say personally that I have devoted the majority of the past 3 years to the study of reprogramming human skin cells to hES cell equivalents in a safe, ethical manner; and no, the pay isn’t good, I was making more money working at a call center selling cell phones over the phone. I just hope that support continues, ignorance is replaced with understanding, and that one day we can all benefit from the myriad of potential treatments that WILL come from embryonic stem cell research.

    Thank you.

  8. Clear says:

    ReprogrammingDocon for a supposed ‘scientist’ you are highly ignorant and foolish. You seem overly confident that ALL people share the same response to difficult situations. I can assure you that not ALL people especially those against this horrific research, would choose to use embryonic stem cells because their family may be sick. Such a statement is ridiculous and bizarre. Simply because YOU feel these cells are GOLDEN, it is ludicrous to state that opponents would go against logic and common sense.

    Secondly your idiotic statement that IVF cells would be thrown in the trash and this some how makes it fine to destroy them is EVIL. This sought of mindless logic would make it fine to kill a sick person in order to use their body parts because they are going to die ANYWAY.

    Mate you are a complete fool and there is no way I believe you are a scientist.