In the most recent travesty, new Program Director at KPFA, Laura Prives, decided that she would not allow long-time producer Bonnie Faulkner to interview alternative health practitioner Gary Null to present his position (and mine) on the California bill now before the legislature making vaccines mandatory. She also rejected Bonnie Faulkner’s selection of Gary Null’s excellent film, “Silent Epidemic: The Untold Story of Vaccines”. This is the first time in memory that a producer at a Pacifica station was banned from selecting her own guest to be interviewed.
Laura Prives’ censorship of Bonnie Faulkner is appalling in itself, regardless of the guest Bonnie chooses to interview, the topic involved, or the stance taken. Producers throughout the network regardless of faction should stand in solidarity against management’s censorship of their sister producer. That the KPFA Program Director’s Prives’ censorship has been allowed to stand by the KPFA General Manager, Quincy McCoy, is a stunning betrayal of everything Pacifica once stood for. Principled solidarity requires all honest individuals to support a producer’s right to choose her own guests without interference from management, regardless of the specific issues involved, even when Pacifica’s producers views diverge on the subject.
Below, please read Laura Prives’ imperial rationale, followed by Gary Null’s powerful response.
- Mitchel Cohen
member (at the time) of the Holistic and Alternative Treatment Committee of ACT UP-NY; and
former Chair, WBAI radio Local Station Board (2009-2012)
KPFA PROGRAM DIRECTOR’S STATEMENT
Laura Prives, KPFA Program Director, issued the following statement on her decision to block Bonnie Faulkner and “Guns & Butter” from airing her interview with Gary Null on KPFA
- Credibility means everything to a media organization. Part of the job of Program Director is to ensure that listeners can continue to come to KPFA as a trusted source of information.
- Gary Null is not a credible source for health information. Null has denied that HIV causes AIDS and that AIDS is a sexually transmitted disease. Null has built a career of selling remedies, supplements and alternative medical advice. His most advanced credential for his advice on life-threatening diseases is a Ph.D in human nutrition and public health sciences from Union Institute & University, a private, distance-learning college based in Cincinnati, Ohio. He has personally profited off of sales from his products used as thank you gifts on his radio show, a violation of FCC rules.
- The majority of the KPFA board rejected previous interim General Manager Andrew Philips’ suggestion to put Gary Null’s radio show on KPFA, before it even became an actual proposal.
- KPFA has a serious responsibility to provide its listeners with accurate, science-based information on public health, most especially on issues that could potentially cause harm to people. Whether or not to invite Gary Null on the KPFA airwaves is not an issue of censorship. It is, however, about protecting the public airwaves from mis-information and from people who stand to profit by offering dubious remedies to sick and vulnerable listeners.
- KPFA has covered and will continue to cover the many issues around vaccines and immunization using the best practices of independent and verifiable journalism.
As an initial response here, let me note that there is a huge difference between “hiring” (with money or not) a person to host a show, and censoring an already-established show host from interviewing whomever they believe is appropriate. KPFA Program Director Laura Prives is erroneously conflating the two.
GARY NULL’S RESPONSE TO CENSORSHIP BY KPFA’S PROGRAM DIRECTOR, LAURA PRIVES
Below, please read Gary Null’s powerful response to KPFA Program Director Laura Prives, who had censored long-time producer Bonnie Faulkner (“Guns & Butter”) from interviewing Gary Null as a guest on her show, and who rejected using the thank you gift Bonnie Faulkner had selected, Gary Null’s film “Silent Epidemic: The Untold Story of Vaccines”.
My quibbles with Gary Null here are minor, as I view his work as heroic:
1) AIDS is not itself a “disease” but a syndrome, involving many different diseases; and,
2) ACT-UP was a vibrant and meaningful organization involved in highly creative direct actions and self-experimentation. It was one faction in ACT-UP — not the entire membership — that steered the organization into its demise via reliance upon pharmaceutical corporate drugs; that pro-pharma grouping within the organization did not represent all or even most activists in ACT-UP.
Other than those, Gary Null’s critique of Prives’ actions is justified and right on target on all points.
Dear Ms. Prives,
I had a chance to read your recent public statements about me, as well as Steve Brown’s reply to you, both of which were forwarded to me. I concur with Mr Brown’s assessment, and with his warning that your statements constitute libel, and that a lawsuit against you and the foundation would almost certainly be successful. My attorneys agree.
Lewis Hill would have been appalled at the blatant censorship imposed upon Bonnie Faulkner and myself, especially in light of the California senate’s recent passage of a bill that destroys Californians’ freedom of health choices for their children. Had I been allowed the opportunity to present the independent science opposing Big Pharma’s spurious claims for vaccine efficacy and safety, there might have been enough support from KPFA listeners to have delayed or thwarted the bill’s sponsors from passing it.
For someone who evidently has no accurate knowledge of either me or my work, I am deeply disappointed that you did not reach out to me privately to address your concerns, but instead accepted as true the slanderous and libelous accusations of individuals with their own political and ideological — and possibly financial — agendas. As a result, your public statements about me were remarkably naïve and immature. They were also, according to my attorneys, libelous — because I have on numerous occasions sent compelling evidence to all Pacifica stations that the attacks against me, fabricated by a small group of Act Up members for reasons unrelated to their stated mission, are without merit. Therefore, I can only assume that your unfounded public statements against me represent malice (in the legal meaning of the term), which exposes you, Margie Wilkinson, KPFA, and the Pacifica Foundation to punitive damages.
It is curious that you would quote a Wikipedia article almost verbatim for information to discredit me. There are many trusted, objective and quality resources that expose Wikipedia’s biases, lack of objectivity, and infiltration by editors who have been paid to create preferential statements for some and denigrating statements for others. So severe and widespread is Wikipedia’s lack of credibility that universities, including Harvard, advise students not to use it. As the program director of KPFA, I would have expected you to be aware of this.
Regarding my credentials that you disparage, let me set the record straight.
Over the past 40 years I have published over 600 articles on science, medicine and the environment, including over 300 investigative reports. Dozens of these became cover stories for national magazines. I have won numerous awards for investigative reporting, journalism and radio broadcasting on these matters. You can review my articles yourself because many are posted on my website in the archives.
I have also been a leader for many social and healthcare movements and was among the first journalists to publish national articles exposing the unsavory financial and political agendas behind cancer, heart disease, AIDS, psychiatry, and the AMA, FDA and CDC. My work has been used by 60 Minutes, and 20-20 earned two Emmys using my work. I have been invited as a keynote speaker at numerous national and world conferences on anti-aging medicine and alternative health to present insights into the health impacts of lifestyle and behavior. My reputation is solely the result of the work I do. I do not promote myself, nor do I have a marketing person, because I spend seven days a week, every day of the year, engaged in social issues.
For those who state I am a so-called “AIDS denier,” that is a blatant lie (as well as being a term slyly fabricated by pharmaceutical industry PR consultants to stigmatize those with alternative viewpoints by subliminally linking them to Holocaust deniers). I have worked with one of America’s leading gay physicians, Dr. Steven Caiasa, for many years. Together we counseled more than 1200 persons with full blown AIDS, many of whom — instead of dying as predicted — are still alive today.
While serving as the director of the Tri-State Healing Center, I arranged for over a 1,000 persons with AIDS to be treated — at no charge — by physicians using holistic protocols. I published a series of articles about natural non-toxic therapeutic protocols for helping AIDS patients. All of this work led eventually to a national press conference in New York City. The conference featured 100 AIDS victims who were in full recovery or had completely reversed their conditions, as demonstrated by their physicians and medical records. New York’s future governor and an eminent panel of scientists reviewed the records of these patients and concluded that the results were both astonishing and significant, and deserved a public hearing.
During this 6-hour event, each person told his story. Eighty-eight AIDS survivors explained how their physicians used detoxification modalities, Louise Hay’s method, and other metabolic therapies. The remaining 12 reversed all their illnesses and their diagnosis reversed to HIV-negative under my care. However, not a single AIDS group, medical doctor or major media member attended the conference — it was a complete and deliberate media blackout even though thousands of invitations had been sent out. The public relations firm that handled the event reported back that they never saw anything like that before.
During my journalist career, my stories have always been vetted by either a scientist or an attorney to assure accuracy and proper scientific citation. Throughout the entire period of the height of the AIDS epidemic I was lecturing within the gay community on lifestyle and behavior modification. I also worked closely with Charles Ortleib, the editor of the nation’s number one gay publication, New York Native.
It was the opinion of the Native’s award winning journalist, Nina Ostrom, that AIDS was due to multiple causes including the Herpes-6 virus. Charles, Nina and others appeared on my radio programs frequently to present their first hand experiences and investigations that differed from those of the emerging gay faction that became aligned with, and to a great extent financed by, the medical industry. Burroughs Wellcome, the manufacturer of AZT, was one of the largest funders of individuals in the AIDS movement, such as Act Up, who targeted myself and other journalists and activists who questioned the belief that AIDS could ONLY be treated with anti-viral drugs, such as they manufactured and sold at predatory markups as high as (literally) 2,000 percent and more.
As the death toll rose parallel to higher AZT doses, the pharmaceutical industry and Act Up continued to promote the pharmaceutical approach to treat AIDS — even though it was not curing, but instead killing off thouusands of the afflicted. As a result, we witnessed a tragic mass-die off of those using high doses of retrovirals. In order to silence those of us — physicians, scientists, journalists and activists, straight or gay — who spent thousands of hours trying to bring this deadly mis-application of drugs to public attention, a smear campaign was launched to call us “AIDS denialists.” This was intended to produce an effect similar to calling someone a holocaust denier, and it destroyed people’s careers. Today, there are over 3000 scientists, researchers and multiple Nobel laureates who challenge the existing AIDS paradigm. None of them deny AIDS as an illness. Instead, what they request is an open debate about other methods of diagnosis and treatment that have proven both effective and safe — but do not rely on dangerous drugs. And that is why the pharmaceutical industry works so hard to stigmatize those such as myself, who are a threat to their huge profit machine, since research into HIV and AIDS today is larger than that for cancer and cardiovascular disease combined.
Regrettably, censorship such as yours help shut off public and open debate on the dangers of unsafe vaccines, as well as on alternative treatments for AIDS. And your statements attacking me as an AIDS denialist by listening to disturbed propagandists flies in the face of simple fact-checking. I have repeatedly invited my attackers on my KPFK and WBAI programs in the past to debate me, but they refuse. However, on my program I did debate the two most prominent people in the field of AIDS: Drs. Robert Gallo and Luc Montaigner (who won the Nobel prize for first identifying HIV).
My first documentary film on health was released in 1986. Since then I have received approximately 300 film awards and official festival entries. I have directed three award-winning documentaries focusing on vaccines, including the one you censored.
During the 2010 faux swine flu scare my producer and I submitted a 100 page white paper to the New York State Governor and Health Commissioner, as well as testifying under oath to the NY health commission, scientific arguments opposing the state’s bill to mandate the H1N1 flu vaccine. I did this on behalf of nurses and healthcare workers whose health would have been threatened by a vaccine that was fast-tracked and improperly reviewed for its safety and efficacy.
If you had taken a moment to listen to any of my broadcasts on WBAI or the Progressive Radio Network, you would quickly realize that the health news I report and comment upon is based on the most recent peer-reviewed medical findings from universities and medical institutions throughout the world, and that there is a huge body of sound science supporting alternative health prevention and treatment for physical and mental illnesses. I present such vital information daily on my programs.
Your personal attack on my motives — by accusing me of profiting from the use of my products and supplements as Pacifica premiums — is grossly unfounded, and one of the typical lies that prevails among the ideologues and enemies of free speech at KPFA. I have instructed my publishers, such as Seven Story press, to offer books to WBAI at such a low cost that my royalties were reduced so the station could earn more money.
The great irony is that for almost 35 years I refused to promote any of my products on WBAI or Pacifica. Only in recent years did that change, when WBAI’s then-Program Director Tony Bates and General Manager Berthold Reimers pleaded with me to do so, and I acceded to their wishes. My personal preference is to not pitch any of my own products as premiums, as former and current station managers of WBAI, KPFK and WPFW can verify.
Your assumption that I am in some kind of “racket,” and that I work only for financial gain, is delusional and an outright lie. During the past 45 years I have privately counseled tens of thousands of individuals without ever charging a penny. Rarely do I accept money for public lectures and appearances. For 31 years I hosted a weekly 6-hour program on KPFK, for 30 years a daily program on WPFW and every weekday for 39 years a program on WBAI. Although I was offered a producer’s salary, I did not accept it, because I was more committed to Pacifica’s mission of free speech than to personal financial gain. But had I chosen to accept producer’s salaries for all those years, Pacifica would have owed me approximately $2.7 million. In addition, I have donated hundreds of thousands of dollars of free premiums over the years to Pacifica stations. Even in 2014, I donated engineering equipment for WBAI’s studio as well as office furnishings.
Unfortunately, you have been taken in by the medical industry’s highly paid dissimulators, such as the Quackbusters, who wrote the Wikipedia entry about me, as well as by those who unthinkingly accept such disinformation as true, and then go on to thoughtlessly repeat it, without making the slightest effort to verify its accuracy. My degree in human nutrition and public health science is from a fully accredited university. My thesis and laboratory research was performed through the highly respected Institute of Applied Biology, a non-profit cancer research institution that dates back to the 1940s.
Therefore, I ask you: If you yourself are not personally knowledgeable about medical and scientific matters, and if you yourself have not performed any first-hand medical or scientific research of your own — what basic humanistic values can possibly justify your mean-spirited attack on someone like myself, who has 45 years worth of scientific and medical experience, and whose findings are supported by (literally) thousands of eminent doctors and scientists? Moreover, if you then refuse to offer a person an opportunity to respond — how then should your moral integrity be viewed?
In conclusion, the number of vaccines that people will legally be forced to allow into their bodies and into the bodies of their even more vulnerable children will soon escalate significantly. Even as you read this, over 270 new vaccines are being developed in the pharmaceutical industry’s pipeline. It is becoming ever more likely that the state of California will pass one of the most draconian and dangerous state vaccine laws in America, and that Governor Brown will sign it into law. Parents who refuse vaccination will be demonized. We can only imagine the holocaust of vaccine-induced injuries these bills will cause in the future.
Your anti-feminist stance, aside from censoring critical information to your KPFA listeners, is an attack on all mothers whose children have been damaged by vaccines. You have further disempowered them. That is your legacy. That is the legacy of KPFA. Your censorship has been a gift to the pharmaceutical industry and the pro-vaccine cartel that Pacifica’s founder Lewis Hill would have denounced.
So before you challenge my credibility, understand I have been leading major social causes for over 45 years. My research and testimony will withstand time. Will yours?
Since you have already had the chance to express your contempt for me through your libelous public statements, I now invite you to substantiate those statements — to transform them from mere unfounded assertions into solid verified fact — by coming on my program to debate me. Refusal to do so will destroy your personal and professional credibility, and further tarnish the institutional credibility of KPFA and the Pacifica network.