Rhymes and Reactions (Jul 1926)

By George Sterling

What a race of ailing wretches we are! Is one in a hundred of us physically perfect—or even in absolute health. Note our crowded hospitals and sanatoriums. See the hordes of diseased and debilitated folk that flock to the offices of our thousand physicians and surgeons—to say nothing of the additional thousand quacks. Watch the faces of the folk on the sidewalks, in stores and on street-cars, and observe how they are seamed and haggard with innumerable ills and cares, obvious or obscure. Recall the heroic labors of our grandparents, married in the 'teens and "blessed" with offspring that numbered from six to sixteen. Then look at the rabble of the infirm, sickly, neurotic and tainted that increase yearly in numbers, like enormous bacteria in the veins of our cities. One may well ask with the reformer: "Whither are we headed?" Is the disease, aptly so called, of civilization to be its own Nemesis, removing the more highly strung races from the face of the planet, or is that civilization to find the secret of its ills, and with that secret a means of salvation?

All through the past the sages sought what they termed a panacea, a remedy for all ailments of the flesh. Modern science has rejected the term and laughed at the idea. It may be correct at that; and yet, as I contemplate this tecent invention of Gaylord Wilshrre's, I am not so sure that man is not at last on the right road, if not to a cure-all at least to a means of alleviation of the greater part of the ills to which our ailing race is subjected.

I have no need to speak of the keen brilliance of Mr. Wilshire's mind. It is enough, to indicate his quality, to say that he is in communication with many of the finest intellects of the world—is, perhaps, the only American with whom Bernard Shaw keeps up a steady correspondence. Even at that, the conception underlying the Ionaco is not his own discovery: that was the work of the great German biologist, Otto Warburg, who has demonstrated the fact that the iron in our blood acts as a carrier of the oxygen from the blood to the tissues. Warburg lectured on this discovery before the Rockefeller Institute, and it was from his demonstration that Mr. Wilshire conceived the plan of the Ionaco.

Briefly speaking, it is an appliance in the form of the inner tube of a tire, which, attached by a conducting wire to an electric light socket and placed around the body, immerses the patient in a field of magnetic flux, which magnetism permeates every cell and drop of blood. There is no sensation, unless one of well-being, and no danger whatever. The result is, apparently, a pure bloodstream, which sets to work immediately at its natural function of eliminating old diseased tissue and replacing it with healthy flesh.

Simple enough, both in design and treatment! The astonishing part is the result, not only in effectiveness but immediacy. I am almost afraid to relate what I myself have seen and been told, by patients, of the cures effected. Suffice it to state, most sincerely, that those affirmations of cured folk include permanent relief from dozens of the most painful ills to which humanity is subjected. I have seen a severe and chronic neuritis healed in a week's treatment, an equally painful case of arthritis, in the hands of a musician, cured in a single treatment. I have seen, or been told, of white hairs turned again to their natural color, of the sudden and undeniable cure of indigestion, diabetes, goiter, anemia (as one would expect), varicose veins, gall-stones, asthma—even of cancer!

All this sounds incredible, even fantastic, when one realizes the gravity of those diseases, the simplicity of the treatment, and the promptness of the cures. I can hardly believe my own eyes and ears; and yet, "the proof of the pudding is in the eating!" Here they are, these restored ones, and they, at least, are in no doubt as to the severity of their former ailments and the actuality of their cure. One is fairly forced to believe, however "impossible" the whole scheme may seem to one who sees a world infested with unscrupulous quacks and their weird "remedies."

What is to be the future of the Ionaco? It is bewildering to speculate on that. It has been in operation but six months, so its clinical history is still but imperfectly documented. Even Mr. Wilshire has been unable to draft the thousands of cures, some apparently miraculous, that have been the result of this seemingly simple appliance. In noting the. number of these cures and their permanence, I can but have imaginings, however vague, of a revolution in therapeutic methods, of a whole world renewed, rejuvenated and freed of most of its ailments by the universal use of the Ionaco. A splendid and alluring vision! I am not at all sure that its fruition is not a matter of the next decade. The appliance is daily, as its use spreads, having wider and more astonishing success in curative results. Thus far, only a few of the California cities have agencies where treatment by or purchase of the Ionaco is possible. What will be the state of affairs when it is in use by the millions? A new folk, a nation immune to the old diseases, a race that has at last attained physical perfection? It seems to me that that outcome is not far from impossible, is even likely. One cannot contemplate these cures and feel mentally impervious to such a vision.

Readers of this department must pardon my giving so much of its space to these comments on Mr. Wilshire's discovery. But I should judge myself criminally lacking in my duty to my friends, to my city, to humanity in general if I failed to proclaim with all my ability this access to health, this means of freedom from most of the ills to which that humanity is subjected. I will give even the address of Mr. Wilshire's offices. It is 150 Powell Street, in this city of the pleasure-mad and frequently ailing.

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