Behind the Bastards

There’s a reason the History Channel has produced hundreds of documentaries about Hitler but only a few about Dwight D. Eisenhower. Bad guys (and gals) are eternally fascinating. Behind the Bastards dives in past the Cliffs Notes of the worst humans in history and exposes the bizarre realities of their lives. Listeners will learn about the young adult novels that helped Hitler form his monstrous ideology, the founder of Blackwater’s insane quest to build his own Air Force, the bizarre lives of the sons and daughters of dictators and Saddam Hussein’s side career as a trashy romance novelist.

Part One: The Founding Father of Fake Cancer Cures

Part One: The Founding Father of Fake Cancer Cures

Tue, 03 Mar 2020 11:00

Part One: The Founding Father of Fake Cancer Cures

Listen to Episode

Copyright © 2022 iHeartPodcasts

Read Episode Transcript

Hello, I'm Erica Kelly from the podcast Southern Fried True crime, and if you want to go from podcast fan to podcast host, do what I did and check out spreaker from iheart. I was working in accounting and hating it. Then after just 18 months of podcasting with Spreaker, I was able to quit my day job. Follow your podcasting dreams, let's break or handle the hosting, creation, distribution, and monetization of your podcast. Go to That's Wanna say I don't know less? Listen to stuff you should know more. Join host Josh and Chuck on the podcast packed with fascinating discussions about science, history, pop culture and more episodes. Dive into topics like was the lost, city of Atlantis Real? And how does pizza work? Say goodbye to I don't know. Because after listening to stuff you should know you will listen to stuff you should know on the iHeartRadio app, Apple Podcasts, or wherever you get your podcasts. Hey there, it's Ebony Monet, your co-host for the San Diego Zoo's Amazing Wildlife podcast. In this special episode, we're speaking with Doctor Jane Goodall about the fascinating journey that led to her impactful behavioral discoveries on chimpanzees. It wasn't until one of the chimpanzees began to lose his fear of me, but I began to really make discoveries that actually shook the scientific world. Listen to amazing wildlife on the iHeartRadio app or wherever you get your podcasts. What's metastasizing my tumors. I'm Robert Evans, host of behind the ******** back on the old introduction schema, trying it out. How are we feeling about that? I loved it. Yeah, everybody loves a good metastasize nation. It's a great word. One of my favorites. It's really satisfying. You're Billy Wayne Davis, depending on who's asking the question. Yes, yes, yes. There are no lawmen in the room. So you are Billy Wayne Davis? Yes. How you doing, Billy? I'm good overall. Do you have any exciting plans for, I don't know, roughly like 2 weeks from now? Ish. A little more like a Sunday. 3 like A like a Sunday I do someday. Somewhere between two and three weeks from now. In a city somewhere between Phoenix and San Francisco, yes, I'll be there. I do have specific plans. Yeah, this is all lining up. Yeah, this episode was supposed to be advertising for this thing happening in between Phoenix and San Francisco, but it's sold out, so there is no need to drum up excitement anymore. Now there's no need. It's the best whatsoever. There's no work involved. I suggest that as a result, we callously disregard the emotions of our fans in this episode. I thought we already did that. Yeah, yeah. But like, like, like ******** negging like, ohh, like, yeah. Aggressively nicon purpose. Yeah. Like, really, really aggressively Speaking of aggressive, Billy. Yes. How do you feel about cancer? I don't like it. Not a fan, huh? Not a cancer, Stan overall. No. Over overall. But there's some upsides. You can't, you know, you can't say there's not upside to everything. So there are. Yeah. Every now and then the right person gets cancer. And I don't wanna disregard, you know I'm a I'm very much a most death. Fear not of man, because men die sort of guy like, like the who's the most recent guy who died of cancer? Who sucked? Well, I say Limbaugh just got it. And I Limbaugh exactly like people were like, OK, alright, not like, yeah, I think it's the best. People were like some people were excited, but everybody else was like, I don't feel anything that's probably good. Cancer is like a drunk redneck with like a short barrel AR15 with one of those 240 round drums. He doesn't often hit what he's aiming at, but every now and then he does. Great. Is it terrible and great analogy at this. So I don't know in in all seriousness, cancer is a big pile of *** and it's unfortunately one of those ***** that medical science is not as equipped to kick as we might like. And despite the wonderful advances in medicine over the last century, thousands of people every year wind up in the nightmarish situation of having some doctor tell them I'm sorry, but there's just nothing we can do. And even more people wind up in the position of a doctor saying we can beat this, but the treatments really going to suck balls, and the fear and pain that accompanies both these situations presents a real opportunity. For the very worst people on Earth. And that is where you and I come in, Billy, because our business is the very worst people on Earth. I don't like when you said all those things. And then opportunity, it's just amazing. And it's like, well, that wasn't a word I was thinking about, OK? Uh, so, yeah, there's a whole industry out there, as I'm sure you're aware, to sell people bogus cancer cures. And yeah, we'll, we'll be doing some episodes in the near future talk about black Sav and all these other terrible things that people sell on Facebook to cure each other's cancers. But today I thought we would talk with the man who invented the modern fake cancer cure industry, a fellow named Harry Hoxey. Have you ever heard of Harry Hoxsey? Now haven't. I would remember that name. Do. That's a yeah. Catchy, yeah, HOXSEY. Yeah. So Harry Hoxie might be the guy, might be the greatest of the cancer con men, and that's that's who we're gonna talk about was on his business card. Harry Hoxsey cancer card. Yeah. Cancer God, man. Yeah. I'll kill you. Cancel. But not really that I'm not going to. Harry M Hoxie, the M stands for Metastasize, was born on October 23rd, 1901, Auburn, IL. So we're already off to a bad start. Just in the middle and nothing. Middle of *** **** it. And I ******* spent some early years in Glen Carbon, so I can say that about Illinois. Yeah. It's nothing. Nothing, nothing. He was the youngest of 12 children, and we do not know much about his parents, really, but we can safely assume that they loved to **** that's why. Like the **** they like to **** because you don't get pregnant every time. No. And you don't get 12 kids who all make it out of that hole alive in that day and age without. Like, really? Yeah, you put in the time exactly. Yeah. He selling his fields. Yeah, he sure is. Harry's father, John, owned a livery stable, which was essentially the gas station of the day, and he also worked as a veterinary surgeon. This did not does not mean that he was just too different. Insurgent, where do you where do you take your horse? Ah, this guy owns a gas station now. Brain surgery on horses. It's actually worse than that. So yeah, the fact that he was a veterinarian does not mean he was a learned man. His license to practice pet medicine was granted under the Grandfather Clause of the Illinois Medical Practice Act of 1877. So in 18777, Illinois was like, there's too many people saying these doctors who aren't doctors. And now if you're going to say you're a doctor, you got to have a medical license. But it was one of those things, like, you know, when people talk about, like, banning assault rifles and they're like the ones who aren't, like Beto O'Rourke. Like, we'll let you keep your guns. They'll be grandfathered in. They kind of did the same thing with people who weren't doctors but had been working as doctors prior to 1877. No. Yeah. You can keep saying it if you've been keep saying you're a doctor. Yeah. OK, this is easier than arguing with all of you guys. Yeah, well, just let you keep being fake doctors compromises. The necessity is the the undergirding of democracy, Billy. It is. It is. So Harry Hoxsey's dad was not a doctor, but got to keep pretending to be a veterinary doctor because he'd been doing it for so long, even though his qualifications didn't really extend far beyond having a saw. Now it's OK. It is an interesting position where, like, you can't say you're a doctor anymore. I'm like, I've been being a doctor for a long time. I've been to who says I'm not a doctor there, all these. I've been saying it so long. All these people said they call me doc, so I feel like I said. Have it as a doctor about his long time as it'll take to get a medical degree, but you've killed a lot of people. Well, but most of them was horses. He's got a point. Just let him be. Let's just move on. There's like so many counties we have to go to. It's just, yeah, that's that's general, basically how it worked out. So Hoxie's dad, John, was a was a a veterinarian, but not really. But legally he was. And decades later in the 1950s, Hoxie would claim that his family's knowledge of the healing arts went back even further. He started to claim that in 1840, his grandfather, John Hoxie, a horse breeder, had a prize stallion that developed a huge cancerous lesion. John had put the horse. Out to pasture and waited for it to die. But then the beast found a clump of shrubs and plants and just spent days eating them almost exclusively. And to John's shock, the animal healed. No. Wow. OK yeah, I'm good. And this is this is not impossible. There are cases in scientific literature of animals seeking out medicinal herbs on their own to to to deal with problems. It does happen. So the story goes that John watched his prize horse cure itself, and then he went out and he gathered up all the herbs that had been revealed to him. By what? Called horse sense. That's that's the key to good medicine and others. I mean, if someone was pitching that to me and they were like horse sense of like, OK, go on. OK, OK you can hear this. Keep hearing this. Yeah. See, see Billy and Doctor Horse, the hit Netflix miniseries coming to your streaming service. Around till he looks at some grass and I'm like, eat that. Yeah, the horse is just squeezing on a baster to shoot bleach at people's ********. I didn't do it. The horse did it. Yeah. Ain't no law that says a horse can't illegally practice bleach medicine. Reverend Dr Ed. So, uh, John Hoxie senior, uh, turns this horse sense medicine into ASAP and he starts using it on all of his other sick animals and over the years, a lot of sick animals that make sense. Yeah, that does, that does track. And over the years, he felt it was very effective at treating cancer sores and other illnesses in his herd. His staff was so effective that other people began seeking out his help for their sick animals. And that, Harry Hoxsey would later claim, is how his dad ended up as a vet. So I mean, it is just the most former ******** you've ever heard, though. Aspects of it scan. You'll say that. Yeah. Aspects of it scan without a doubt. Yes. Yeah. Mini of Tobacco Spit was put on my BC yeah. Like that's. And it worked. I don't know how it worked. It ******* worked. No, there is actually. Tobacco has medicinal benefits. Native Americans used it to keep away certain insects for thousands of years and it it can be used in that. Although tobacco spits not the ideal way to do that. Yeah. As I got older, I was like, he could have just used the. Tobacco, I think. Yeah. You could just put that that. Yeah, yeah, you did that to spit on me. Yeah. But, I mean, that's the thing about Southern medicine. If it can be spit on you, it will be spit on more fun. It's a it's a funner delivery device. It is. They're not wrong about everything. No, they're they're usually right about all the fun stuff. So Harry's grandfather handed his recipe down to his son, and from the age of eight he began to help out in his dad's business. But as often happens, the passes of generations brought with it change. Harry's grandfather had been content to use his miracle cure on animals, but Harry's father decided, **** it, why not try this stuff out on random human beings with cancer? They ain't no different than animals. It cures what I'm pretty sure is is horse cancer. It'll cure what I'm pretty sure is is people cancer. Rub it on your head. For years, the Hoxy successfully cured all kinds of cancers with the magic of horse science. Until John Hoxie died in 1919. As the story goes, on his deathbed, Harry's father gave him the recipe for making it the special family Sav. He told his son, now you have the power to heal the sick and save lives. Why? He did that on the deathbed? Yeah. Honestly saying that at the end, he was like, hey, yeah, right at the end. Here's how you make a ticket. Here's the ticket to saving all mankind with the sad. Yep, Yep. You wait until your deathbed for that one. 2 teaspoons. Wait, is that do you say table tea? Is that table? Is that? That's the dumbest *** **** it for all. This is obviously, obviously a lie. It's all so blatant. I think that's yeah. When I see you big like that, that's when I'm like. Yeah, we'll get into why exactly this, like, how this. Like him about later. Obviously it is a lie. We know this for a number of reasons, but the most obvious of the fact is that Harry's story changed wildly over the years before publishing his biography. You don't have to die. In 1956, Harry claimed that his father had developed the save on his own in 1908. The versions of the story Harry told also tended to leave out the critical fact of how his father died. Cancer. Yeah, his mother also died of cancer in 1921. Now, but no, horse cancer, not horse cancer, did not die of horse cancer. Some folks might suggest that a cancer cure that failed to say both the Cures, mother and father, might not be a cancer cure, but let's be fair. Mechanics still get flat tires. You know, personal trainers put on a couple extra pounds around the holidays. You, you, you, you. It's unreasonable to hold every cancer cure to the standard of actually caring cancer. Yes, yes, that is unreasonable. You're not gonna have any magical cancer cures then, but I mean, how are flea markets gonna really exist? Hmm? Yeah, very fair. Think of small business owners like Harry Hoxie. Now, the reality of of Harry's back story seems to be that he quit school at age 15 and started working as a coal miner. He later moved on to selling insurance. That's a good leap. That is a good leap. That is a good right into a desk job. Yeah, that's the that's the change. You want to know what my next job is not going to be? This I tell you, man. Yeah. He completed a high school correspondence course after studying at night for three years, and it is not usually explained why Harry didn't go right into his father's line of business. Perhaps he was just drawn to the raw ****** appeal of coal mining. Whatever the case, Harry would later claim that he didn't start using the formula on his own until 1922, the year after his mother's death. So. I did. I mean, do you think it is that, like teenage rebellion? He's like, I ain't going in the ******** and like, yeah, yeah, I'm going into real work. And then you went and did real work and he was like, man ********. And he is so much. I see why Dad has a fake cancer care, you know? Yeah, that's he must have tried real work one time, too. You know, I'm gonna be honest. If if if there's one thing having a podcast that's taught me, it's that I probably could have had a fake cancer cure in the 1900s and made a good living. And if it had been a choice between coal mining or fake cancer care, I probably would have been a fake cancer doctor. I come to be honest with you, and I'm a stand up comedian. So because I think people were like, Oh yeah, you know how I was like, no, I know how to do all that stuff. I just don't choose to be a stand up comedian. Yeah. So. I bet you're wondering what was the inciting incident that brought Harry Hoxey into the business of using his dad's fake horse sense cancer cure. I can't. I don't wanna. He met a Civil War veteran who had cancer of the lip. Now, this veteran had found Harry, and I'm gonna give you one guess as to which side of the warrior wound up on this veteran fed. Harry didn't even. There was no, there was no. Oh, I wonder which side it never. It always has. Not even a question. No, he's he's wearing a specific shade of grey. Yes, I know. I know which one it is. Yeah. This civil War veteran found Harry through a trail of myths about the boys. Cancer, curing family. Desperate, he begged the young man for a treatment. Harry very apologetically told the sick man that he could do nothing. He didn't have a medical license and that sort of thing was required. Now, according to Harry, the veteran responded with this line. Nobody needs a license to save lives. If I was drowning, would you stand by and watch me go down? Because a sign on Yonder Tree says no swimming allowed. ******* bulletproof. Watch it. I mean if it depends on if I knew you were not. It's. I mean it's like, yeah, actually most professionals will say you shouldn't just, if you don't have training, swim in there after address. Why so many people die because one person starts drowning and then like three other young men will run in after him and they'll all drown. It happens every year, constantly. Now, in his recitations of the story, Harry claimed there's no adequate answer to that kind of logic, and I didn't waste any time in trying to find 1. Instead, he set right to using his magical horse medicine on the Dying veterans cancer. The cancer was cured, and for years afterwards the veteran would claim, primarily through newspaper articles, that he had been healed. And it's probably at this point that we should talk about what precisely was in the hoxie's formula now, the actual formula that he used throughout his career. I read constantly and and included wild differences. One of the versions of it included like this I think was bloodroot is the name, which is like it's it's a similar kind of compound to what you would put on a wart. You know, you put those those like salad and it'll burn the ward off. Yeah. So one of the different formulations of the save was that and that sort of a compound can work on skin cancers sometimes it usually doesn't and it's generally so like the the the different types of like different formulations that come up. So, like, vary so much that you can't rely on them to cure the cancer, but it can be used to treat cancers. And more to the point, like people back in those days had like goiters and a bunch of weird skin things that were just, like pop up on your body that weren't actually cancers. And a compound like that, an serotine compound like that can burn those things off. So it is entirely possible this guy had some weird lump that a Doctor Who wasn't really a doctor because it was ******* 19 and dot like said was cancer. This guy burned it off and the guy was like. Scared me? Yeah. Just look gross in the doctor's like, whoa, that's cancer. God, yeah. Now, the most common recipe in the modern day you will see given for hoxie's formula is a mix of licorice, red Clover, burdock root, stillingia root, barberry, cascara, prickly ash bark, and buckthorn bark, and this was not a recipe unique to his father or his father's father's horse. Similar formulas existed in various medicinal guides at around the same time, and it was very first described in 1898. So whatever debatable health properties you want to attribute to hoxie's tonic, it definitely wasn't invented by his family. It's a thing people had been using for a very long time, and it's not even what he used all the time. He basically just mixed up whatever the **** he wanted most of the time. And then yeah, in the sales mode went into sales mode. It was all about the sales to Hoxie as opposed to like what he was actually selling because that varied over the years. So you think his dad believed in it and he was just more of like a I am. I am not convinced his dad ever had any kind of cancer sav. I think he made that up too, but it's possible. Oh, you think his dad was made, you know, you think he made-up that his dad did it? Yeah. Like I I ******* make a medicinal save that I have given away to a couple of friends. Over the years for like, it's good for like, you know, we've used it for Umm like dogs that have like a raw spot on them to stop them from gnawing on it and like, it's good for it. It's got stuff like everything in it is something that like, I can point to double-blind studies that have been conducted and show that like plantago major does this or like and like that was even more common back in the day. Like you live out in the middle of nowhere. There's no ******* doctors. Everybody's got some weird little remedy they use. So it's entirely possible that Hoxie's dad had an actual herbal remedy that he read out of some book that his son started lying about and saying was a cancer cure. Here too, like, who knows what happened? Yeah, and any number of things could have occurred. As we'll get into what matters is less what Hoxie was using to cure cancer and more how Hoxy marketed his cancer cure that did not cure cancer. And I want to make that really clear touch. Yeah. So after quote UN quote. Curing his first patient, Hoxie partnered up with two Chicago men to form the National Cancer Research Institute, a common law trust, with the goal of exploring his father's magical save. For some unknown reason, these Chicago men backed out very quickly and Hoxie alone expanded his operations. Into the Hawk Side Institute, which he launched in the town of Taylorville. Now these facilities were the old headquarters of the Order of the Moose, which is. Billy and I just gave each other look like Hawks side and then you said Moose and now I know Billy can't make all of it so like. I I yeah. It's a con man. Like, everywhere he goes. Yeah. And I I know Illinois is technically part of the Midwest. You know, we're kind of right on, right, right in that Mason Dixon line area. But I'm going to declare it part of the South just based on this story for sure, like from like Peoria. Dale is. Yeah. Once you get. Yeah. Yeah. Yeah. The southern part of Illinois. Yeah. No, I mean you damn near Missouri. Yeah. Yeah. So, yeah. The ******* order of the moose. So he sets up his headquarters in the old order of the Moose Building, which he buys with the help of unnamed businessmen in town who he convinced somehow to give him a pile of money. Now, Hoxie began publishing advertisements for the Oxide Institute. Next they featured the word cancer in large, bold letters, followed by this copy. Any person suffering from this malady is invited to apply for authoritative information as to the cures that have been affected and are now being affected at Taylorville under strictly ethical method, medical supervision, painlessly without operation and with permanent results. Yeah, strictly ethical. We gotta, we gotta emphasize that. No, that doesn't make alarm bells go off when you have to say that in your pitch. Now, this is ethical and this is strictly ethical. Yeah. Why would it not be? Yeah, that's exactly how you know something's ethical. How would you know something's ethical if people didn't repeatedly tell you that they aren't conmen makes me trust them. It makes me trust them. Now interested parties, most of whom were either cancer patients or their relatives, began to inquire soon, and the Hawk Side Institute was quickly filled with patients. Next, according to a wonderful book, the Medical Massias by James Harvey Young quote, shortly the local paper began to run stories of deaths that were occurring at the Institute. Local doctors began to be concerned. One of them wrote the high priests at the American Medical Association, telling of examining a man who would receive the oxide treatment. The pace had been applied to a tumor on the cheek two days before the man. Guide, the doctor wrote. I was called to see him, and found necrosis of not only soft tissue of his face, but a complete destruction of the mallor bone. The man died of hemorrhage at the hospital. And this is where we. Yeah. Was just giving him like acid. Jesus. Yeah. That's that's what I was saying. One of the formulations of the save that Hoxa used was basically it's very similar to this stuff black save that you see sold over like Facebook and **** today. It's a compound that burns your skin off and people will lie and say it only targets cancer skills. It burns everything. And you can potentially use types of this to burn off very specific types of skin cancer. It's it's. It can work, but the problem is that none of these people know what they're doing and they over apply it and apply it way too strongly and apply it on cancers that it can't help with. And a lot of times if you just keep applying this it will eat through to the ******* bone. Yeah, like it's some. It's like, you know, an amputation can potentially be a necessary medical treatment. If you use it for every potential illness, you're not helping anybody. This is that kind of thing. Cut it off. Cut it off. Like, you know, you think about, like, a lot of this stuff, like, goes back to ancient Native American remedies, and if you're in ******* the year 1500 BC and you've got a skin cancer, yeah, this, like, this has you, something like this will give you a better shot at survival than ******* nothing, right? It might work. It did on some people. That's why they used it. But by the this time and, like, it's not the way to do things. And he's also not just using it on very specific kinds of skin cancer. He's just giving it to everybody who's sick. And so he winds up burning through a lot of people. Skulls. Cool. It's cool. Yeah. I like the neat stuff. They're like, hey. We should do something about that, right? Yeah, they start to, they start to be like, this seems to be a problem that he keeps dissolving the skulls of people in town, don't we? Should should we meet up about that? Yeah, should we, should there be a thing we do when people start melting skulls? As a medical professional, that's not good. Now, it is 1924 and none of us are good at being doctors, but I feel like this is worse. All of us that have the license should be able to agree. Draft. Yeah. Now, to keep the secret of his medicine, the doctor said, Hoxie bought the separate ingredients, each at a different drug store. The key ingredient, analysis at AMA headquarters revealed, was arsenic. That's hoxie's vaunted remedy was an escharotic, a corrosive chemical that ate away the flesh. Through the ages, physicians had employed such corrosive agents and treating external cancers. But this mode of procedure had become outmoded. Pastes went out with the bustle I Met Cancer Authority has noted. So far as scientific medicine is concerned, such chemicals could not distinguish between tissues. Were cancerous and tissues that were sound. The risk of damage to healthy flesh was tremendous. The Escharotic might eat into the blood vessels and cause death through bleeding. Surgery was much safer and more certain so. Yeah, yeah, I agree with the last part. Yeah. You know, it's even safer and more certain than surgery. Billy Wayne. I got hunches. Yeah. Yeah. It is the products and services that support this podcast. And I feel like the FDA will support us when we say that every one of these products cures cancer better than randomly applying arsenic to your face. I would. I would put my name on that. Yeah. Yeah, absolutely. Absolutely. Well, yes, maybe. Yeah. Yeah. No, not. Billy's name on that too. Put my name on it. Put a version of my name. Billy's name is on all the doctor. Billy, Wayne Davis. Billiam billiam Davis. That Reverend Dr billionaire Wayne Davis? Yes, billionaire billionaire Wayne Davis. Well, help make Billy a billionaire by purchasing products from companies that are unrelated to him. Services. Mint Mobile offers premium wireless starting at just 15 bucks a month. And now for the plot twist. Nope, there isn't one. Mint Mobile just has premium wireless from 15 bucks a month. There's no trapping you into a two year contract. You're opening the bill to find all these nuts fees. There's no luring you in with free subscriptions or streaming services that you'll forget to cancel and then be charged full price for none of that. For anyone who hates their phone Bill, Mint Mobile offers premium wireless for just $15.00 a month. Mint Mobile will give you the best rate whether you're buying one or for a family. And it meant family start at 2 lines. All plans come with unlimited talk and text, plus high speed data delivered on the nation's largest 5G network. You can use your own phone with any mint mobile plan and keep your same phone number along with all your existing contacts. Just switch to Mint mobile and get premium wireless service starting at 15 bucks a month. Get premium wireless service from just $15.00 a month and no one expected plot twist at That's Seriously, you'll make your wallet very happy. At Mint Mobilcom behind now, a word from our sponsor better help. If you're having trouble stuck in your own head, focusing on problems dealing with depression, or just, you know can't seem to get yourself out of a rut, you may want to try therapy. And better help makes it very easy to get therapy that works with your lifestyle and your schedule. A therapist can help you become a better problem solver, which can make it easier to accomplish your goals, no matter how big or small they happen to be. So if you're thinking of giving therapy a try. Better help is a great option. It's convenient, accessible, affordable, and it is entirely online. You can get matched with a therapist after filling out a brief survey. And if the therapist that you get matched with doesn't wind up working out, you can switch therapists at any time when you want to be a better problem solver therapy can get you there. Visit behind today to get 10% off your first month. That's better Com behind. So by now we imagine that you've seen the theories on Tik T.O.K. You maybe even heard the rumors from your friends and loved ones. But are any of the stories about government conspiracies and cover ups actually true? The answer is surprisingly or unsurprisingly, yes. For more than a decade, we hear at stuff they don't want you to know have been seeking answers to these questions. Sometimes there are answers that people would rather us not explore. Now we're sharing. This research with you for the first time ever in a book format you can pre-order stuff they don't want you to know now. It's the new book from us, the creators of the podcast and video series. You can turn back now or read the stuff they don't want you to know. Available for pre-order now, it's stuff you should read or wherever you find your favorite books. We're back and we are talking about Harry Hoxie's burn your face off clinic in Taylorville, IL. Now, the AMA did not take all this sitting down. One doctor wrote a scathing report on the Hawks side Institute in the AMA Journal, writing that tragedy would befall cancer sufferers who are beguiled by the false beacons of the oxide university. The promoters of the scheme, he wrote, were reaping a rich harvest from gullibility and suffering. Which is very well worded. Yeah, accurate, eloquent. Now, Hoxy responded in the way of all true expert charlatans. He sued the AMA for libel and demanded 1/4 of $1,000,000. **** you pay me. Yeah, and I have to say we're going to talk about this later. This is the first time someone's really done this. That, like one of these medical charlatans, has taken the fight to the people trying to bust him in like an organized. And he will, he will continue to. He's not really the like like Umm goat ball. Doctor Who we we will also talk about later is kind of doing this. You know it. It is similar time frame frame, but Hoxie is on the cutting edge of establishing how to attack the medical establishment to secure your right to sell poison that is. He's one of the founding fathers of that. Everything needs a pioneer, I guess. Everything needs a pioneer. That's a pioneering is always good, doesn't matter what you are. Nope, Nope. You should be rewarded for being the 1st. I'm gonna be the pioneer just chopping off cancerous lesions real ******* fast with a machete. Bet that you're not even the first that's done that. No, this being a guest of this podcast is taught me I will not be the first, but I will be the fastest and the drunkest, and that's something to be proud of. Yeah, there's actually no way I will beat the trumpets if all the history I've read is correct. No, you won't. Hey, if I can walk, I won't be as drunk as the average doctor in 1838, or any of the founding fathers. Or any of the founding fathers. Ah, God. So the case spent several years wandering through the courts before the AMA finally insisted it go to trial, and this seems to have been them calling Hoxie's Bluff. He did never want the court case to go to trial. He just wanted to be able to constantly raise money off of talking about this case that he was fighting and the AMA was like, no, let's ******* go to court and say no. Yeah, no, he was kind of shocked to wind up in court, and he was not actually prepared for a lawsuit and did not have any of the things ready that he needed to have ready. And so the judge dismissed his claims. Perhaps his lawyers were distracted because at the same time they were fighting a lawsuit brought against toxic by the family of one of his dead patients, so accused of practicing medicine without a license, Harry pled guilty and received $100 fine. This would be one of dozens of convictions for practicing medicine without a license. That's it. What? That's all he got? Yeah, $100. It's a lot of money back then. Yeah. It's not it is not enough to get a lot of murders, is what he did. Yeah. He got away absolutely $100. Yeah. Yeah. It's more money than, but it is. You're right. Absolutely not enough to stop him from his behavior. He doesn't even slow him down. No. No. Because you don't have to pay it. I mean, you could say it does have an impact because he's forced to close the Hawk side Institute in 1928 after just four years. So like you could argue you know it it it did something, but it did not stop Harry's dream of curing cancer with horse medicine. He immediately founded another Cancer Institute in Jacksonville and when this was shut down he tried the chat town of Gerard, Illinois, where he'd grown up. Somehow he managed to call in the town Chamber of Commerce into letting him celebrate his return home with Hoxie Day a 4th of July. Like celebration of the town Band, playing in a small crowd of grateful patients, giving their loud testimonials. He's got fellow. Boxing. He does have Moxie. He's. He does. If only he had actually been selling Moxie, which is, of course, a mixture of mipt and MDMA. That is a delightful way to spend an evening. OK. I'll take it. OK. Yeah. It it ******* rules. Yeah. So a fellow who is described in the literature as an eclectic doctor from Indiana praised Hoxie Sav. Well, that's what they called Larry Bird, too. Eclectic doctor. The eclectic doctor from Indiana and a local minister delivered a speech that praised Harry Hoxsey as a figure of near religious character. I love my country because its heroes are such characters as George Washington, Abraham Lincoln, Woodrow Wilson, who loved to serve but not to rule. I love Hoxie because he does not want to rule the world, but serve the world. No. That's a great speech. It is a good speech and it's just. God, if you just get a good performer, there's it's all you need. It really is. It's it's remarkable. Yeah, and just just don't get too full of yourself. You could do that forever. Yeah. Now with this preamble complete, Hoxie took up the stage to address his once and future neighbors quote from Hoxie. There is a lot of knockers who do not know what they're talking about and especially around a man's hometown. If those knockers are here today and have the mind of a 6 year old child and don't leave here today, a walking, talking died on the wool Hoxy fan and convinced beyond a reasonable doubt that this treatment is a cure for cancer, they are either deaf, dumb. Both blind, or else they are crazy. I'm not gonna say that word, but not not not with my accent. Nope. Not gonna say knocking. Ohh. Yep. You know what? Yep. Good call. Love my career and my children. You know what I mean? Yeah, yeah, yeah. Soon as you said that I was like, no. Yeah, sitting this one out. Everyone y'all have fun playing. I'll be over here. After warming up the crowd with some random insults, Hoxie zeroed in on attacking the medical establishment. Declaring so-called real doctors with licenses hard hearted and only interested in having their hand. Greased with plenty of money so they could buy fancy cars. He noted that he'd invited the AMA to this rally, but that they'd refused to attend. Why don't they fight in the open? Why don't they take this platform? Why don't they prove the hoxy affairs as fake as they say? Look no further. Being doctors curing thing. Why won't you come to my parade and tell me my burning treatment? Don't care, cancer. Just say it to my face. Say it to my face. Say it to these dead peoples burnt out faces. Yeah, you gotta work hard to find what's left of the faces, but it's in there. They'll say it too. Yeah, you're going to have to shout it because of the years and the burning, but there's no cancer. Now, the AMA was in fact aware of all this, but letters written internally at the time showed they basically concluded that the best thing to do was let Hoxy run his little clinic for a while. They felt it would soon become clear that his treatment was worthless, and then he'd be run out of town. This is an ethically dubious approach, but it kind of worked, and a hoxy soon found himself fleeing Gerard. Andy Griffith approach to it. Yeah, this is exactly how Andy Griffith would handle it. Yeah, that's an Andy Griffith. They were like, just maybe it'll get around. He's burning. Little faces, yeah, he the folks will figure out pretty soon they don't, but they ain't that dumb. Bernie comes back in half his face. He's like, yeah, Barney we gotta face. But that would be the first act of the of the episode. It's Barney getting his face burned off again in his face back. Yeah. Now proxy was fined twice more in Illinois for practicing medicine without a license. As an instinctive grifter, Harry Hoxsey knew exactly two things #1 the key to grifting is to never, ever admit defeat and #2. The second key to grifting is to move somewhere with fewer laws. If the laws keep getting in the way of your con, that's really, that's really. Everything about grifting solid. As we've learned, they all don't stick to those rules. They do not stick to those rules. And that is what what damns them in the end. But this is not the end. So very next, Hoxie moved his cancer clinic to the Mexico of Illinois, Ohio. I was like, no, he didn't. No, no, no, no, no, not yet. He goes to the Mexico of Illinois, which is, of course, Iowa. And he teamed up with another random dot guy there, another fake Doctor Who thought he could cure cancer. And the two worked together briefly until the state of Iowa. Realized what was going on and forbade hoxy from treating cancer patients ever again. So actually, Iowa handles this very well. I just I can't not make fun of Iowa and I'm not going to change. They deserve it. It's pretty. There's not a single state in this Union and I will not mock except for Montana. Uh, because I am frightened of it. Yeah. And it's awesome. Yeah. It it is awesome. Yeah, it rules. That is another reason. Now, this began a period of travel for Harry Hoxie. He moved to Detroit and then Wheeling, WV and then Atlantic City, setting up cancer clinics and having them almost immediately busted. The AMA followed him the whole way and he's hardly get busted in West Virginia for any. It's a ******* Billy the kids hometown like. It's hard to get. It's hard for those people to be like, hey, come on, we're West Virginia and you win a step too far for us. Come on, we we've made it mandatory for six year olds to carry handguns, but this is a step beyond what we're comfortable with burning people's face off. Get out of here. Now. Did the AMA followed him the whole way and he accumulated convictions for practicing medicine without a license at the normal rate. Men accumulate Twitter suspensions by 1936. Harry Hoxsey was tired of getting constantly, almost immediately caught and law slammed by the medical establishment. He decided to head to the most lawless, vile, hateful, wretched and untrustworthy city in the United States of America. The one place where a medical con man like him could truly thrive. I'm talking, of course, about Dallas, TX. Hmm. Maybe. Yeah, yeah, yeah. Let's dance. Yeah. Yeah, yeah. Blood a lot. It's mostly ego with it. Yeah, that city. So yeah. Yeah, that's ohh I'd met my brother. It is right. You can get away with everything in Dallas, TX. You can't. It is. It's comical. Yeah, yeah, that that leads. I mean the Chamber of Commerce, the modern Chamber of Commerce is motto is Dallas, TX. You can get away with it here. Come on in. Yeah. This isn't a joke. This is just the truth of Dallas, TX. I would say 80% of the crimes I've committed in my life have been in Dallas, TX. No consequences. Funny. It's a great town. He is fun. It is. We should. Now it does feel like it's like Texas Vegas is what we need to do a show in Dallas for all the reasons that just got listed. Yeah, we'll we'll do a show in Dallas and I'm sure commit a couple more crimes there. Now for the actual work of spreading horse medicine on dying people, Harry turned to a handful of homeopathic, osteopathic, and eclectic doctors. These were people who had medical licenses. So it was not a legal for them to practice non medicine on cancer patients. And you'd think that with a situation like this, like this pretty sweet gig for a guy like Harry Hoxie, you'd think he'd be able to avoid getting in more trouble for practicing medicine without a license. But in the great tradition of medical conman, Harry possessed a deep and uncontrollable need to really just get his hands in there, you know? Yeah, it's just, yeah, they do. They do have that need. You can't stop them. You can't stop them even when they don't need to, when they're already rich. They can't do it. They ******* can't. It is and. It's the it's the thing that's most confusing about these guys. Obviously, they are mostly just vile con men who want to make a **** load of money and don't care if it works or not. That's a factor. But there has to be an element of belief or something that makes them want to do it themselves. Like, there's there's something else going on. It is not purely mercenary thing. Yeah, yeah, I'm with you because there is that thing of, like, I'll ******* do this, you know? I can ******* fix this. Yeah, you don't. You can't. There's states cannot, can't multiple states. You've gone through like half of them at this point. A lot of the country you keep killing people. He's like, no cancer does he's like, no, you speed it up. Yeah, you really, really made it faster. But there is something I also love that every state he goes to, there's like, he always teams up with the new person. So that's the key, though. That cracks me up because I like to think of that moment where they both realize, like, wait, you're a full of **** too. I'm a full of ****. You wanna? Yeah. Should we make more money off of this? Yeah. Yeah. I don't know. Harry was caught practicing medicine without a license and fined $25,000 and given A5 month sentence in jail. And especially compared to his first penalty for practicing medicine without a license, this is pretty, pretty reasonable penalty. And it's at least a good start. But Harry was still, uh, he was practicing in Texas, and even though Texas levied this nice fine on him, he was able to appeal the fine to a higher court within the state. Who decided, what are we doing? Punishing this guy? He seems nice. Get out of jail, you scamp. So Texas was the right place to move. In other words, Harry was able to avoid future issues of getting convicted of practicing medicine without a license, but convincing the American Naturopathic Association to award him an honorary Dr of Naturopathy. Degree, degree. And it's kind of hard for me to figure out exactly how this happened. I've done a bit of digging which suggests that this honorary status at the time was conferred upon people who made $10 donations to the association. It may have been that easy. I don't know. It may have been that easy. Judging by his background. He is that clever where he was like, what is this, 10 bucks? OK. ****. Hell yeah, yeah. It also might have been a situation where they came to him and offered him the honorary degree because he was so prominent within like this natural medicine community that was really in like the 30s and 40s starting to grow into a thing. So they might have reached out to him because he was so prominent. I really don't know. Now, at this point, though, we should talk a little bit about naturopathy. The term was coined by a guy named John Sheel in 1895, and John sold this word to the father of Naturopathy, a man named Benedict Lust, Alderman Shield Lust. Yeah, it's amazing. Benedict Lust used the word naturopathy, which he hit again, purchased to found the word the these American School of Naturopathy in 1901. This was reorganized in 1919 as the American Naturopathic Association. It grew rapidly up into the 1930s. Most states at this point were not willing to grant naturopaths licenses and so at first the only licensed naturopathic doctors were either in England or in the American W even after Naturopathy suffered its first. Collapse is a discipline. In the 1940s, it remained incredibly prevalent in the Pacific Northwest, and it is today. But this time it's still going pretty strong. Still a big deal. Yeah. And at this time, the Southwest is like the heart of the naturopathy movement, and Texas has a hell of a lot of these people. So. Modern naturopathy is not a subject within the bounds of this episodes, and it's changed what it means over the years a fair amount. But in the 1930s and in Texas, the term basically meant a Doctor Who doesn't want to follow all those rules other doctors follow. Which is, you're right, Texas is the perfect place for that. It's the perfect place. That attitude. Oh God, he's right. Yeah, you're right. It's perfect. One of the things about being a Southerner is, and one of the things about being a libertarian, honestly is that everything I love and everything I hate about both the South and libertarianism is bound up in each other. So like what I love about the South is this like, attitude of like, leave me the **** alone. Do not tell me what to do. I identify with that strongly. I plan to live in the middle of nowhere very soon. I I love that attitude, but it's also the attitude that gives you nonsense doctors. Yes. It's like, nobody should tell this guy he can't burn cancer off of people's faces. Yes. And it's yeah. And it takes another person like that to look and be like, no, no, that that guy's full of ****. That's a bad idea, guys. We shouldn't be doing this, like, as a as a ****. You kind of person. That guy's a bad ****. You kind of person. Yeah. Yeah. And it it's just this kind of thing that, like, you just can't trust the free market to sort this **** out because the free market has no problem with this guy making a ******** of money lighting people's faces on fire. With acid, free market is trying to make their own money. So we're not looking at what you're doing. That's that's why regulation, OK. We're. Yeah. It's why the AMA is a good thing to exist despite some flaws that it has. And especially in this. The the AMA is really doing the Lord's work of trying to stop this ****. So while Hoxie started his Dallas practice, it was this was right at the time that medicine was in the throes of what's known as the chemotherapeutic revolution. So chemotherapy. Has just become a thing at this point, and it brought hope to countless cancer sufferers. It still does. But chemo? Yeah, it still does. But chemo is also really ******* unpleasant to receive, and it was even worse than the 1930s. It's a ****** thing to have to go through, even though it absolutely does save a huge number of lives. But horrible stories about painful chemo treatments that had a lower success rate than they do today helped to drive new customers to hoxie's practice where he treated them with his horse medicine. So yeah. This is. You can see how 1 feeds into the other. Yeah, and it's not, it's just. And what sucks is, like, these. It's not a lot of dumb dumbs going to him. It's just people that are like, just help. Do you know what I mean? Just please help me. And a lot of them are folks who, like, you know, cancer treatment is even more primitive. A lot of there are people. There probably was nothing science could do to help them. Yeah. So they go to him in desperation, and he makes their last months even worse, you know? Yeah. And we'll talk about what a lot of his patients were, too, because it's even more complicated than that. But Billy, you know what's even better than chemotherapy? Oh yeah, a lot of stuff. Hmm. Capitalism therapy, buddy. Capitalism therapy. That's debatable. That was it will reduce the the kind, you know a full wallet is a kind of metastatic tumor, Billy. And or felt. Capitalistic therapy will get rid of that tumor in your wallet. It's time for an ad break. Services. Mint Mobile offers premium wireless starting at just 15 bucks a month. And now for the plot twist. Nope, there isn't one. Mint Mobile just has premium wireless from 15 bucks a month. There's no trapping you into a two year contract. You're opening the bill to find all these nuts fees. There's no luring you in with free subscriptions or streaming services that you'll forget to cancel and then be charged full price for none of that. For anyone who hates their phone Bill, Mint Mobile offers premium wireless for just $15.00 a month. Mint Mobile will give you the best rate whether you're buying one or for a family. And it meant family start at 2 lines. All plans come with unlimited talk and text, plus high speed data delivered on the nation's largest 5G network. You can use your own phone with any mint mobile plan and keep your same phone number along with all your existing contacts. Just switch to Mint mobile and get premium wireless service starting at 15 bucks a month. Get premium wireless service from just $15.00 a month, and no one expected plot twists at That's Seriously, you'll make your wallet very happy. At now a word from our sponsor better help. If you're having trouble stuck in your own head, focusing on problems dealing with depression, or just, you know can't seem to get yourself out of a rut, you may want to try therapy. And better help makes it very easy to get therapy that works with your lifestyle and your schedule. A therapist can help you become a better problem solver, which can make it easier to accomplish your goals, no matter how big or small they happen to be. So if you're thinking of giving therapy a try. Better help is a great option. It's convenient, accessible, affordable, and it is entirely online. You can get matched with a therapist after filling out a brief survey. And if the therapist that you get matched with doesn't wind up working out, you can switch therapists at any time when you want to be a better problem solver therapy can get you there. Visit behind today to get 10% off your first month. That's better Com behind. So by now we imagine that you've seen the theories on Tik T.O.K. You maybe even heard the rumors from your friends and loved ones. But are any of the stories about government conspiracies and cover ups actually true? The answer is surprisingly or unsurprisingly, yes. For more than a decade, we here at stuff they don't want you to know have been seeking answers to these questions, sometimes their answers that people would rather us not explore. Now we're sharing this research with you for the first time ever in a book format, you can pre-order stuff they don't want you to know now. It's the new book from us, the creators of the podcast and video series. You can turn back now or read the stuff they don't want you to know. Available for pre-order now, it's stuff you should read or wherever you find your favorite books. We're back O. The early years of Harry Hoxey's wandering practice had involved him mostly using that pace that burnt off cancers, and he primarily treated like stuff like those weird like lip cancers and goiters and weird **** like that that like, like that veteran came in with. And he also treated a lot of breast cancer and unfortunately a lot of ovarian cancer and other external cancers now. Part of why he had a lot of positive testimonials from patients is that much of what he treated was not cancer. A lot of it was warts and lumps and things people thought might be cancer. And he would tell them it was cancer, and then he would burn it off, and most of these people would wind up being fine. And so it's like, Oh yeah, I saved your life. I cured your ******* cancer. It was in Dallas that Hoxy first began claiming that he could treat internal cancers, too. And this evolution was probably a direct reaction to chemotherapy. So now chemotherapy is claiming it can keep treat internal cancers. Hoxie's gonna start treating internal you. Me too. Yeah. OK yeah. Yeah. Yeah. Sure. Yeah. So most of his, his his mixtures varied, but most of them included a mix of water, potassium iodide, which is generally used to loosen mucus, an herbal laxative called cascara sugar, and a few other herbs. So taking it would absolutely provoke a physical response, you know, which is part of how people feel like they're, oh, I'm purging, you know, all this toxic stuff. So he's kind of the first guy to realize that. If you just make people **** a bunch, they'll feel like they're healing. That is. Yeah. I mean, that's what a good hangover does, too. If you absolutely hate about you like I am healed. The poison is getting out. Yeah, all those skinny tea scams that influence Sergio or that. I was just thinking of that. Get your way to health. That cleanse was that you put the. It's literally just **** pills. Yeah, that's what it is, yeah, where you eat a bunch or you just drink a bunch of syrup and **** and you're like, no, that's just, yeah, you're just ****. Your way to better health flush in your system. Yeah. And not eating for days so that you get, like, those quick, you know, those quick results that don't actually stay. Yeah. Yeah. So he also had a medication he would give people that was basically just Pepto Bismol, which was a common medication at the time. Foxy prescribed it to deal with the nauseating effects of his other mixture. So some of these drugs did have medicinal effects, but none of them cured cancer. And I'm going to quote again from the book the medical Messiahs why has colored mixtures cured cancer? Hoxy and his spokesman were Frank. Confessed they did not completely know. We have been too busy treating cancer victims and fighting court battles to keep our clinic open, he asserted in his autobiography. Despaired the time, personnel and facilities for objective study. His hypothesis, in its bluntest version, held that a major chemical imbalance in the body caused normal cells to mutate into a cancerous form, and his medicines restored the original chemical environment, checking and killing the cancerous cells. This hypothesis could be elaborated at length, as in an address delivered to Hoxie medical director into a complicated. Fantasy of a relevant scientific and pseudoscientific jargon that sounded very impressive to the layman but caused genuine cancer experts to grieve. It makes things worse as the experts assess the yeah, just to grieve degree. That means like they they they felt like something just died. Yeah, they're exactly God. This is bad. What? What made things worse, as the experts assessed the hoxy theories, was that the hoxy literature condemned the only treatments yet found valid in cancer therapy. And I really want to emphasize here what a pioneering grifter Harry Hoxsey was. Generations of snake oil salesman pioneered the fine art of lying about the efficacy of their own medication. The downside of this is the fact that it puts a lot of pressure on your treatment to actually work. Hoxie only promised a better than 50% success rate with his own treatment, rather than trying to present it as a perfect panacea. He emphasized that it just had a higher success rates than conventional medicine. Hoxie's whole marketing strategy pivoted around a **** talking real medicine rather than talking up his fake medicine. So that's cool. Wow. Yeah, he's he's a genius. He I mean, you're not wrong, but. He doesn't use his powers for good, that's for sure. It's just no. Yeah, it'd be. I mean, it'd be one thing if if he wasn't trying to discredit credible science. But then he wouldn't be successful. Yeah, I guess so. Yeah. It's it's like you look at right now. Why alternative medicine and goop and all this **** is more is is like the biggest it's been in decades as an industry. It's because this ******* it's because, like, Facebook and **** have spread this welter of propaganda that has people less trusting of modern medical science than they ever have been. And other **** plays into that. The fact that we don't have universal healthcare, the fact that so like, yeah, people are like going broke trying to get treated. And like the whole medical system is this very unfriendly mess to get into. And like all of the scammers are very friendly and nice. And like all these different Facebook support groups, people share their stories about using ******** medicine to treat themselves like and attack mainstream medicine at the same time. Like, it's all. Harry Hoxie is like the first guy to realize this and to try to do it, but it doesn't reach its hypothesis until the Internet really makes it possible to convince a bunch of people that doctors are all in on a scam. I mean, and it's great you look at the opioid epidemic, too. Yeah. Just like you're talking all those factors. So you're like, you look at all of it combined. You're like, Oh yeah, see where it's just a ******* field day for this. Umm, great stuff. So part of how Harry Hoxsey did this was by having his own medical professionals write papers and studies lambasting the mainstream medical industry or whatever you want to call it. His own medical director, JB Durkee, gave lectures. Where he would claim, in my opinion, X-ray and radium have no place in the treatment of cancer. They upset basic cell metabolism rather than do anything to correct it. A printed version of Dickey's lecture was handed out to new patients in order to convince them that actual medicine would only make them sicker. New patients, generally sick and afraid, were first sat down with a clerk who wrote down their medical history. This included data on what their other actual doctors had told them. Records were requested, and then lab tests were carried out from time to time. He even did biopsies and took X-rays to prospective patients. The whole encounter at Hoxie's clinic would have felt very similar to a visit with their normal doctor. And this was another of hoxie's great innovations, alternative medicine that looked from the outside just like regular medicine. And it is this weird situation where like you have to convince people that regular doctors are full of **** and trying to scam them, but you also the more like a regular doctor's office your office feels, the more successful your con is going to be. Like a church that opens a coffee shop exactly like a church that you like. And then like, hey man, you're lost. You're like, yeah, I am lost. I am lost inside, inside. Like, here's the cappuccino. Some Jesus. Now, the dangerous nonsense didn't start until after a cancer diagnosis had been given to the patient, which of course, was given in roughly 100% of cases. External cancers were treated with burning agents. Internal cancers were given all sorts of weird liquids. Alongside a course of vitamins, laxatives, and antacids. Once the treatment was prescribed, the patient was taken to Hoxie's business manager. The standard fee started at $300.00, which was about $5500 in modern money. God yeah, it's a good racket, man. It is a good racket. This worked extremely well and soon Hoxie was making bank. The whole thing would have looked pretty reputable to most observers. At the time, he only claimed around a 50 to 60% success rate between the few surface cancers that were actually eradicated by this burning compound and the fact that many of his patients didn't really have cancer. He had a lot of satisfied customers and as the money rolled in Harry Hoxie decided he had to innovate one more time by doing something no medical grifter had ever done before. He attempted to get Congress on his side. No, I thought you were going to say he is gonna raise someone from the dead. No, no, no. They've all done that. Yeah. In 1945 he visited the National Cancer Institute in Washington DC, backed up by three congressmen who were believers in his therapy. The NCI had been created in 1935 with the goal of bringing serious resources to bear in the fight against cancer. Since the state of the field was more primitive back then, they were trying everything and there was a willingness. Within the C's doctors to see if there might be something to Hoxie treatments. You know, it's something that we give it a chess has always been corrupt and stupid and mostly stupid. Very corrupt. But stupid is the dominant thing. Yeah, stupid. So dumb. So unbelievably dumb. It's not new. Like when people are like this is like no, this is how it's always been. You guys always been exactly this. Things have always been exactly this dumb. Could just faster now when we just see it way more clear. Yeah, that's true. It is now clear that it is. Yeah. It is clear. Thankfully thanks to the work of pioneering journalists like the Washington Post who who put up great columns like why we need more elitism in politics. Finally, finally, someone saying that someone's brave enough to say it. Thank you. So yeah, he goes to the he he gets, he goes with these congressmen to the NCI to like, see if there's in and the doctors there are like, yeah, we'll we'll take a look at your treatments. Why not? And I'm going to quote from the medical messiahs to to to discuss what happened. Next, to avoid burdening the Council with trivial and patently feudal suggestions, criteria had been established to govern which methods of treating cancer. Among those proposed warranted investigation and possible testing. When Hoxie, the congressman in tow, showed up at the Institute, the NCI's director, Doctor R Spencer, explained to these criteria, the Institute, he said, would be glad to present Hoxie's case to the Advisory Council. If he would furnish certain information, he must reveal his formula and explain his techniques of treatment in detail. He must also present. A record of at least 50 cases treated by his method. Each case must represent an individual in whom the presence of internal cancer had been confirmed by competent biopsy, who had been treated by physicians, had given up his hopeless and who had then been treated by Hoxie and had survived from three to five years. Reasonable requirements, right? Seemingly, yeah. And there was no chance that Hoxie was going to provide any of this. He did send the NCI 60 case studies, but their minimal review showed that none of his files were of any use at all. They hadn't documented any of the stuff he was supposed to document. They couldn't contact any of these people. It was just it was just like, right? He basically writing it on a piece of paper. I cured this guy. Acquired this guy, too. This guy's better. Faxed BNC, I told him that he was going to need to provide them with much more information on his patients if they were going to review his treatment properly. In Hoxie decided that this was evidence that the NCI had been compromised by the vile beasts at the American Medical Association, he later wrote. I was bitterly disappointed, disillusioned, and shocked. This that's my favorite part of anyone full of **** is when someone like this hears their pitch out in a in a nice way. Like, hell yeah, what you got? What you got? Do the dance. What you got? And then they're like. And the the salesman's like, oh, we got these people and like, cool, that sounds great. Now we just need you to answer these like very simple questions, very basic question, very simple questions in the right. And the other person is like, how dare you. You're OK all right. That's what you're move. All right, then we're done. That's so it's. Oh yeah. It's amazing. It rules. It rules, Billy. Is it pure ego? Is that what gets you to that room? Doing that? It's like the like, it reminds me of the Casey Anthony thing where she walks them to the place she worked at and then just walked to the end of the wall and was like, I didn't really work here. I don't know. I I think there's ego certainly involved, but I, I, I feel this is a colder scheme on his part and I'll explain why so he doesn't give up just because the NCI is like we're going to have to provide us with real evidence. Yeah, he goes to one of his pet congressmen next, a senator named Elmer Thomas of Oklahoma. Of course. Now, one of Thomas's constituents, possibly planted by Hoxy, had went gone to Elmer and, like raved about the fact that this guy's horse medicine had saved his son and he'd urged Thomas to visit the clinic. And Senator Thomas obliged. He held a hearing, transcribed by a court reporter, where he questioned a number of patients that he'd let Hoxie select, who all told him positive. Stories of their treatment. He told the senator he was willing to put his medicine up to any kind of test. This was an empty promise. No test followed and Hoxie had no intention of ever submitting to one. But he had what he wanted. This printed testimony written by a court reporter of an actual senator questioning his patients. He printed this up and published it as final proof of his pet treatments efficacy and he was able to be like, no, we went to the NCI and you know we've we've submitted data to the NCI. So for the rest of time you could say like oh we sent them our. Yeah, like we're we're trying to play ball here. It's the AMA that doesn't really want to look into what we're doing. It seems all a scheme. And, Oh yeah, smart. Always been going on, yeah. Now, there were, of course, lawsuits against Hoxie from patients that his treatments had failed. In the late 1940s, he was sued by a widower who claimed that his wife's death had been caused by negligent treatment at Hoxie Clinic. This was probably true, but Hoxie's lawyers protected him. He won two libel suits against Morris Fishbein, the AMA's anti quack attack dog, and the hero of our Goat Ball Doctor. Episode Fishbein was absolutely correct when he called Hoxie a cancer charlatan in an article titled Blood Money, published in a major Hurst. Magazine. He argued that Harry's father had been a veterinarian and a dabbler in faith cures who died of cancer himself. Hoxy sued for $1,000,000 and won, but was awarded only two dollars, one for himself and one for his father. And the whole case is really weird. The judge seems to have believed Hoxie's claims about the efficacy of his treatment, so the judge is like dumb enough that he fell for this guy's lies, but he also acknowledged that Hoxie was sort of a grifter and that all of his marketing. Light on the fact that the medical establishment was trying to stop him, so he was like, clearly the AMA didn't damage your business by attacking you. This is how you're selling your treatment? Yes, that's that is such a weird train of thought. I want to try to be fair here, and there's no fair. What are you talking about? Yeah, it's very weird. And the judge responsible for this baffling ruling was a guy named Atwell. And he was on the bench again in 1950 when the FDA went after Hoxie with the intent of hitting him with an injunction to stop him from treating cancer. Their argument rested on proving that the hoxy treatment did not work. First, they tracked down all the patients who talked to Senator Thomas. They eventually selected 16 cases where they were able to gather enough information to evaluate, you know, medically. All 16 of these cases fell into 3. Categories either people who had never had cancer, people who had had cancer but who had gone to like chemotherapy and actually had it treated and just also taken Hoxie treatment, or people who had actually had cancer taken only hoxie's treatment and died horribly. So yeah. I'm going to quote again from the medical massias. One of the most poignant cases presented involved a high school boy of 16 who, after a football injury, developed an extremely malignant cancer in a leg bone. When the boys physician recommended amputation, the parents could not face this prospect and took their son instead to Hoxie's clinic. The medical director, the father testified, had guaranteed a cure for some four months. The lead took Foxy's tonics. They did no good. Several months later, the boy was dead. Had the amputation been performed, the physician who had first treated the boy testified, he would have had a fighting chance. Yeah, but I don't blame the parents either. No, no, no. I mean, **** yeah. It's it's it's ******. It's ******. That's that's a question. Is ******. But and it's it's also I would as scientists, I'm sure. Like when they evaluate all this information, they're like, look, it's rarely this clear, OK? Yeah. Look, we're scientists. It's always like a little murky and then you have to wait years. But this ***** pretty yeah. He's full of ****. Yeah. So Hoxie did not take the stand in his own defense. Instead, he brought up even more of his happy patients to testify on his behalf. 11 people testified that Hoxie had cured them of internal cancers. Of those claims, three were based solely on the patient's word, four were rebutted by research from the FDA, and the last four had no diagnosis other than the word of Hoxie's medical director, Doctor Durkee. Now, the District Attorney in this case, pointed out that maybe, just maybe, Doctor Durkee wasn't a great guy to take as an expert on anything. He'd graduated from an osteopathic College in 1941 and only interned for a single year in an unaccredited hospital in Nebraska, where he's seen most of the time. Yeah, I was puking the whole God as gross as hell, man. During that unaccredited single year internship, he had seen at most 5 cancer patients. By the time he joined Hoxie staff as his medical director in 1946, he had seen less than 20 cancer patients in his whole career. Hoxy immediately had him seeing 35 to 50 patients per day. Despite his utter lack of experience, Doctor, Durkee claimed he, quote, did not need a biopsy to make a diagnosis of cancer. Nope, you don't. You just need a good old hound dog. It's got a cancer nose on him when one of them cancer dogs. You get out of here. Jesus Christ. It's amazing. On the rare occasions he did submit a biopsy to a pathological lab, the workers in those labs reported that he did such a **** **** job that the biopsy could not be used. In a sane world, this would have been damning. But Judge Atwell, like the cut of hoxie's jib and he ruled that the FDA could not claim that Hoxie's cure was injurious or futile. His patient survival rate was about as good as a real doctors now, the only reason it was about. As good as a real doctors is that real cancer doctors treated real cancer patients. And Hoxy was primarily treating random people who came in with random problems, who he then lied and said had cancer. So you see why his his his treatment rate was similar to a real cancer doctors. Half of my patients who mostly don't have cancer survive. Half of your patients who have cancer survive. We're the same thing. So give me my license back. Let's now. Yeah, it's great. It rules, Billy. It absolutely rules. It does. It does. It inspires people like Elizabeth Holmes. Yes, it did. The FDA appealed and asked the Circuit Court to grant the injunction instead, arguing that Atwell had been swayed by incompetent testimony, which he absolutely had been. A 3 judge court reviewed the evidence and agreed unanimously. In particular, they found that only a biopsy could accurately diagnose cancer. A random dudes opinion that something was probably cancer was not a real diagnosis. They chided Judge Atwell for being so blind and deaf as to fail to see here and understand. The important effect of such matters on general public knowledge and acceptance. Atwell was required to institute the injunction, but before it went into effect, Hoxy appealed to the Supreme Court. They refused to hear the case, so Hoxie went around them and had his attorney send a suggestion to Judge Atwell. They very nicely proposed that instead of banning him from shipping his internal medicines across state lines, the injunction should just ban shipment unless the drugs were labeled. To show that there was, quote, a conflict of medical opinion concerning their curative. Waves. It's that's modern **** right there, yeah. He's a genius. It is. You're not wrong, but you're wrong, you know? Yeah. This is that is basically how most modern quacks get away with selling nonsense labeled as medicine today, and it's ironic to me that it actually didn't work in the early 1950s, we were just slightly less stupid about these sorts of things. So after a bunch more legal slap fighting, the original injunction was finally granted, and in 1953 it went into effect. In 1954, after one more last ditch appeal by Hoxy. He could no longer ship his medicine across state lines, but he was still allowed to practice. Dallas and this was not exactly a small business. In 1956, his gross annual income was estimated at $1.5 million, and he saw more than 8000 patients that year. Now since, yeah, it's too many. 8000, it's so many. That's. Yeah, it's cool. It's pretty cool. It's really it's it's good, it's good and it rules. It's God. We're all doomed. We are doomed, Billy. We are doomed. Fun with it, though, yeah. So since he could no longer ship out of state, he launched a massive advertising campaign to convince Americans to travel to lovely Dallas for their cancer treatment. He used passages from the trial testimony as advertisements, publishing them in popular magazines. He hired shady doctors from around the country, a mix of quacks and real doctors who needed money, and he got positive quotes from them, which he also published. Hoxie embarked on a nationwide lecture campaign applying. Audiences with lines like this, there's only one way they'll ever close that hoxy clinic, and that's to put a militia around it. Yeah, it's amazing. It's amazing. He was so made for the 21st century. He would have done incredible on Facebook. He really. Oh my God. Yeah. He he would have been *******. Donald Trump's like ******* what do you call the attorney general, right or not? Attorney general surgeons. The medical one. Surgeon general. That's the ******* was just thinking, yeah, his face would be on cigarette packs going like, these are these are the good cigarettes because I get a cut. Exactly. Exactly. They're called half sticks. Yeah. Hoxie also hired a ghostwriter to publish his autobiography with a wonderful title. You don't have to die. That is a good title. That's a good title, cause a lot of people are terrified of that. Yeah, it's a great title. Now, this, the publication of this book in 1956 is when he started claiming that his grandfather had come up with the herbal mixture at the center of his treatment. This is also when he started denying that his father, who had died of cancer, had died of cancer. Instead, he began to claim that the AMA. Written out a fake death certificate to hide the fact that his dad had really just died of an infection. Man, that is. Yeah. There's layers going on. There it the battle he was waging against mainstream real medicine was at the center of everything Harry Hoxey did. He claimed that his father's deathbed handover of the recipe for his magical staff had included the warning. They will persecute you, slander you, and try to drive you off the face of the earth. And excluding the word, slander. This would wind up being true. And in Part 2, we will talk about how Harry Hoxsey was finally driven off the face of the Earth. Or at least off the face of the United States. Because, Billy, I'm going to give you one hint as to where tomorrow's episodes going. Hmm. Was it South of the border? Down Mexico way? Yeah, it's their calling. It's it's it's where it has to end it. It's the only place it could go, yeah. Once I once I stood before I even knew where this ended. When I read fake cancer care, I said, we're probably gonna wind up in Rosarito at some point, aren't we? Yeah. I was just trying to remember the name of the town. I was like, there was a town. There's a couple of them. You know, the whole Baja Peninsula is a great place to do that work. Pretty it is. It's great. I love it. I love it. But I it's it is ironic to me that. We have referenced for a show with the, the, the the goal that our show has, talking about the worst people in all of history. The single town most commonly referenced in the show is not Berlin, it's not Moscow, it's not even Washington DC it's ******* Tijuana, yes. Well, I could go so good. But this is the end of the episode. Billy, you got some plegables to plug? Yes? When is this coming out? God only knows. OK, just go to I'm touring a bunch. I'll be in. I'm gonna guess. Start on March. Probably. Maybe. OK, perfect. Yeah. Or maybe the end of February. Tulsa. I'll be in Wichita. I'll tell Tulsa. OK city, Nashville. Seattle again in April. Just go to Go to Thanks, guys. And you can find me on the Internet somewhere, presumably, but the secrets have been lost to time. That's the episode you can actually find him at. I write OK on Twitter. You can find us at ******** pot on Twitter and Instagram. We have a T public store Robert, also co-host, worst year ever with Katie Stoll and Cody Johnston. And if you got your tickets to see Billy and Robert. It's Janie typewriter on marchie. Yay. Yay. Yep. And you know, if you wanna take to Twitter to to give me **** for making Sophie do all the work at the end of the episode, that's fair, but I'm not going to change my ways. Never. Hello, I'm Erica Kelly from the podcast Southern Fried True crime, and if you want to go from podcast fan to podcast host, do what I did and check out spreaker from iheart. I was working in accounting and hating it. Then after just 18 months of podcasting with Spreaker, I was able to quit my day job. Follow your podcasting dreams, let's break your handle the hosting creation distribution. And monetization of your podcast? Go to That's Want to say I don't know less? Listen to stuff you should know more. Join host Josh and Chuck on the podcast, packed with fascinating discussions about science, history, pop culture, and more episodes. Dive into topics like was the lost, city of Atlantis Real? And how does pizza work? Say goodbye to I don't know. Because after listening to stuff, you should know. You will listen to stuff you should know on the iHeartRadio app, Apple Podcasts, or wherever you get your podcasts. Hey there, it's Ebony Monet, your co-host for the San Diego Zoo's Amazing Wildlife podcast. In this special episode, we're speaking with Doctor Jane Goodall about the fascinating journey that led to her social discoveries on chimpanzees, the four O months the chimps ran away from me. I mean, they take one look at this peculiar white ape and disappear into the vegetation. Listen to amazing wildlife on the iHeartRadio app or wherever you get your podcasts.