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Adventures of a science-based mole at an antivaccine crankfest (conclusion)

[Orac note: Welcome back, my friends, to the antivaccine show that never ends. We’re so glad you could attend. Come inside, come inside. (Sorry, couldn’t resist.) Earlier this week, I published a rare guest post by a mole whose services were loaned to me by our great imperious leader Lord Draconis Zeneca (All hail!), to report on the activity of One Conversation, an event whose organizers tried to ensnare Orac himself into participating in a “balanced” (translation: false balance) discussion of vaccines and vaccine injury. )Orac, of course, was too savvy to fall for that trap.) Ultimately, as the provaccine doctors and scientists initially attracted by the unctuously polite patter of One Conversation organizers Shannon Kroner and Britney Valas dropped out, what was left was an antivaccine quackfest, that became an even quackier antivaccine quackfest with two late additions to the panel.

In case anyone is interested in seeing the source material, here is part one of the antivaccine quackfest on video:

Note that they have decreased the time that the logo was on the video markedly, meaning that the timestamps used in the previous post are no longer correct. We’ll have to go back and correct that. If they do the same thing with part two, we’ll end up having to correct timestamps as well. Note that the time stamps are of the form “(video part/time).”

Now, here’s part two of our intrepid mole’s report on the One Conversation antivaccine quackfest.]


While the second block was shorter, the amount of information imparted that was notable, was not so Part 2 is at least as long as the first and for that I am sorry. Here is the video.

So, welcome to part two of the One Conversation report. The video begins at 2/21:40 if you are interested in jumping right in and avoiding the dead space. Orac asked me to include some features that only an attendee would have observed. The audience was primarily female and older; I got the impression that most were grandmothers and, as I stated in the previous post, about half identified as vaccine-injured or know someone vaccine-injured. There were just a handful of younger, parent-aged attendees. There were also some attendees who appeared to be from the Nation of Islam, which has a very large presence in the metro Atlanta area and has been the focus of a sustained anti-vaccine campaign by Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. and Tony Muhammad. The vast majority of the audience was clearly anti-vaccine. Unsurprisingly, the panelists appeared to pick up on this and over time became increasingly provocative, “playing to their base” so to speak, as the discussion went on.

The antivaccine quackfest continues

At this point, James Lyons-Weiler, Gayle DeLong and David Lewis were introduced and asked how they became anti-vaccine. David Lewis said that the government banned ocean-dumping because of the polio vaccine and reversion to wild-type virus, while Gayle DeLong said that she was drafted by having two autistic daughters and James Lyons-Weiler said that Del Bigtree convinced him. A video of the news coverage about the Disneyland measles outbreak was shown and audience laughed at some segments. Shelley Wynter incorrectly stated that 99% of the “Disney kids” were vaccinated. (2/31:49) Sherri Tenpenny presented a video of the Brady Bunch episode in which the kids all all got measles as how she remembered when her generation had measles and the audience applauded. (Orac has referred to this as the “Brady Bunch gambit” or “argumentum ad Bradi Bunchium” When she had heard that 644 kids got the measles (Disneyland outbreak), “she though to herself, lucky them they got the measles and they’re going to have a whole lifetime of immunity, lucky them.” She disparaged herd immunity as, “How does her getting a vaccine keep you from getting sick? Natural immunity is superior.”

She remembered that a DO conference in San Diego canceled her speakership because she was going to present an anti-vaccine talk and that they replaced her with pro-vaccine DOs. She took umbrage at being probably the countries’ leading osteopathic doctor on the topic of vaccines (in her mind) and yet not allowed to present to her peers who would want to hear about this. She presented “natural herd immunity” as a good thing that protected people and asserted that the word “diseases” is used to scare parents and that we should use “infection” instead to remove fear. She showed some slides about the benefits of “real and natural” herd immunity.

Natural maternal immunity is better and infants one year old have the ability to mount immune responses to “normal childhood infections” and be fine. Absent from this slide are that not all maternal infections lead to trans-placental or IgE in breastmilk; infants under two years old do not mount adequate immune responses and not all infections lead to “long-term, innate immunity”. She informed us there is a distinction between natural or “real” herd immunity and “medical” immunity.

Next up:

Any maternal illness is passed through the placenta and breastmilk. Vaccines can only provide antibodies for less than twelve years. She then explained how the concept of herd immunity came about and it was based on natural immunity (2/42:34).

Next up:

Medical Herd Immunity

Dr. Tenpenny discussed how superior “natural herd immunity” is by citing The corrected average attack rate from measles among city children. She claimed that this study concluded that when 55% or more of children under 15 years old had natural measles, outbreaks stopped. I feel compelled to comment on this since this paper may be hard to obtain for those who wish to fact-check. That is most definitely not what this study concluded. What this study actually found is that in urban settings, when 55% of children were infected with measles by 15 years old, transmission was decreased but susceptibles were still there to be infected at a later time as well as birth cohorts brought into the pool of susceptibles. This observation is what explains the fluctuations that we see in historical measles data and graphs. Furthermore, the 55% threshold was only applicable to that particular urban center, with fluctuations in different urban centers and even higher in rural areas. Dr. Tenpenny presented this as superior to “medical immunity” because the threshold is 55% as opposed to 95-97%. She says “medical immunity” doesn’t work. She implied that herd immunity is a myth because it doesn’t apply to “most” vaccines e.g. hepatitis b (“you can’t give something you don’t have.”), tetanus, diptheria and pertussis. Since OPV, rotavirus, varicella and live influenza vaccines are live viral vaccines, they contribute to transmission. At least so Tenpenny claimed.

Shelley Wynter asked about formula feeding and how that seemed to get pushed on lower socio-economic groups. Toni Bark answered and actually made fair and reasonably accurate points about the marketing and social engineering of formula feeding as superior. Del Bigtree added that African American communities have higher rates of autism due to forced vaccination for financial benefits. Sherri Tenpenny chimed in that “capture” is used to catch up a child from a lower socio-economic group with vaccines, and the audience audibly reacted negatively. Shelley Wynter explained he doesn’t get flu vaccines, “because he doesn’t know what they are shooting me up with.” and the audience wildly applauded. Sherri Tenpenny added, “That should apply to all vaccines, if you don’t know what’s coming out of that needle, you shouldn’t inject it into you or your children.” Again the audience applauded. Toni Bark explained that according to some studies (Canadian ones were repeated because they didn’t get the results they wanted), when you are vaccinated with the flu shot, you are more than twice as likely to contract a novel flu virus which is more virulent and you are more than four times as likely over the next few months to get infected with a serious upper respiratory infection (that would be yes-ish to the former and no to the latter). James Lyons-Weiler explained that physicians vaccinated for pertussis every ten years are responsible for spreading pertussis and should wear masks. The audience whooped and applauded wildly again.

Enter “Dr. Bob” Sears

Dr. Bob Sears was asked to discuss mandatory vaccine laws (2/55:40). He related three reasons why he feels they are unnecessary: They won’t work and are wrong for our society. He feared non-medical exemptions will happen in other states but “we’re fighting it”:

Number one: There is no infectious disease crisis that warrants the exercise of government police powers.

He showed a slide of reported measles cases from 2010 to 2018 (2/55:17)

Dr. Bob Sears and the measles

The average number of measles cases each year has been 128 except for 2014 with the Disneyland outbreak and that had 667 cases but what “they” don’t tell you was that 400 of those cases occurred in one area of Ohio. It was in an Amish community that was largely unvaccinated and about 70 cases occurred in a group in Texas that year. He stated if you take out that 470 that occurred in these [unvaccinated] groups:

…measles was business as usual for the rest of our country. But ‘they’re’ not going to tell you that; they’re going to tell you that measles has tripled because fear sells.

He called this an anomaly and when doing statistical analysis, you don’t count that because it’s an anomaly. He said not to let “them” lie to you and spread fear while trying to make that case that because the CDC said measles was eliminated and now it’s back, but there were never any zero measles cases in that year so they can’t say it was eliminated because the definition of eliminated is one that no longer circulates and has zero cases. But we’re dealing with lies and fear in order to sell the idea that there is an infectious disease crisis.

He said there had to be something wrong with the status quo to justify mandatory vaccination laws and that they weren’t justified because measles wasn’t transmitted in schools in California. Because many vaccines for diseases don’t prevent transmission, that was, to him, reason number two for eliminating mandatory vaccine laws. He used Acellular pertussis vaccines protect against disease but fail to prevent infection and transmission in a nonhuman primate model to make his case. Of the study he said:

This study was actually done by a researcher at the FDA and a researcher at the NIH. Right two governmental organization, two esteemed researchers-this wasn’t Joe’s Granola Journal, this was a study done by FDA and NIH researchers.

He then went on to bolster his case by stating that eight of the ten diseases we vaccinated against don’t circulate in schools, only whooping cough and chicken pox do. Hepatitis b doesn’t spread in pre-schools or schools, babies don’t need these. He urged listeners to speak to their state senators about stopping mandatory vaccine laws using his talking points. He was rewarded with wild applause.

Sears’ third stated reason was that the questionable safety profile of the CDC schedule makes mandating vaccines ethically-problematic. You can’t say the CDC vaccine schedule is proven safe:

Those that are pro-mandate are trying to create this environment of discrimination against those that choose a natural immunity lifestyle and a natural approach to immunity.

“Natural immunity people will become a discriminated minority” by using fear by doctors. He criticized incentives to improve vaccination rates in physician offices, as well:

This is getting really ugly because they are labeling your children as dirty, contaminated, dangerous, less deserving of equal rights. Remember separate but equal bathrooms? Drinking fountains? Classrooms? Sitting on the back of the bus? Separate but equal schools and education? Well now our kids in California don’t even get an education in a school; they get educated at home. I worry that they’re not even going to let us on the bus, or let us go to the parks. This is discrimination and yes, this is nothing like the discrimination that we’ve perpetrated on other people in the past, no comparison to that. But this is how it starts; it starts with one idea-you people are dangerous, you people don’t deserve equal rights and it has to stop.”

He was rewarded for this rant with a partial standing ovation.

Sherry Tenpenny asked: If your kid is vaccinated, why should my unvaccinated kid be a problem? (I think that all of you know the answer to that one.)

When is a whistleblower not a whistleblower?

David Lewis was then introduced as a whistleblower who is oppressed, downtrodden and cast out (2/1:15:08). Dr. Lewis explained that whistle-blowing was publishing results that go against consensus science used to support government policies and certain industry positions. He listed his publication record and then relayed an elaborate story of the conspiracy perpetrated against him for whistle-blowing on a superior. He mentioned Brian Deer as Brian “Fear” (some in the audience moaned) and “got on his case” by resurfacing the Synegro case against Dr. Lewis and claimed that Mr. Deer was trying to do to him what he did to Wakefield. Dr. Lewis said that he became interested in the Wakefield case because it bore similar characteristics to his own regarding the U.S. government ban on ocean dumping due to waste containing live polio vaccine and other live vaccines along with toxic chemicals. He said he became a vaccine skeptic because he had the flu vaccine twice over the last 20-25 years and got the flu. Deer targeted him because Dr. Lewis appeared on a panel at Harvard and mentioned vaccines. According to him, the One Conversation panelists who canceled would lose their jobs if they discussed vaccines as he did. He then invoked a grand conspiracy “at the highest levels” against anyone who came out against the government.

An economist who thinks she’s an empidemiologist

Gayle DeLong, who, as you recall, is an antivaccine economist who thinks she’s an epidemiologist (well, “economist” does sound a little like “epidemiologist”), was asked to tell us about the financial incentive for that oppression (2/1:27:30). She quoted Dr. Paul Offit regarding vaccine development getting more expensive and less profitable. She implied that it couldn’t be possible because shareholders would want to know that companies never made profits on vaccines. She addressed the criticism she has received about being an economist conducting vaccine studies as she being an outside point of view needed to “ask the right questions and that’s what I’m trying to do.”

She “proved” vaccine profits by showing four individual pharmaceutical company total sales and the proportion of vaccine sales. She claimed that vaccine sales made up a huge part of sales but there are very few costs behind those sales because they don’t have to advertise, or have product liability because Congress took care of that. “These sales are just money the company printed”. She showed a slide of vaccine sales and total sales for 2014-2015 to demonstrate how vaccine sales have increased relative to total sales. Finally, she mockingly concluded that when pharmaceutical companies say they don’t make money, don’t believe them. Antivaccine quackfest indeed.

Notably, DeLong made no attempt to hide her derision for HPV vaccination when she presented results from her fertility and HPV vaccine study (2/1:30:50). She credited herself highly for having been the one to look at the relationship between HPV vaccination and fertility and told the audience the only two survey questions on the NHANES were “have you ever been pregnant and have you ever received the HPV shot?”. She denied she claimed causation and addressed the criticism of ignoring contraceptive use as, “fine, look into it”. She complained that, “some people trashed the study [for this reason] and there are some limited data in the data set that she went back to look at and it turns out married women actually used less birth control.” (Orac, of course, recently demolished DeLong’s shoddily designed and executed study.) She said we need to study this more and other possibilities could be aluminum and polysorbate-80.

DeLong also invoked Robert F. Kennedy, Jr.’s criticism of the HHS reports on vaccine safety that should have been issued every two years but never were and repeated the trope that vaccine manufacturers can’t be sued for the injuries caused by their vaccines after the vaccine injury act of 1987 (point of “delitigation” according to her). She used VAERS to make her case because there wasn’t any other reporting system around. She did recognize that there was no denominator in VAERS that established how many doses of vaccines were given; so she estimated that. How? Who knows? As we can see, according to DeLong, vaccine injuries went up after “delitigation” and vaccine manufacturers were absolved of liability.

At this point, DeLong was asked by Shelley Wynter who buys vaccines, and she responded that it is the government and physicians who are reimbursed by insurance companies. She said she knew a physician who took her family to Tanzania on the SkyMiles she earned from vaccine purchases, which to her represented a conflict of interest. Shelley Wynter asked about who finances the Institute for Vaccine Safety and compared it to an oversight group for cigarette safety funded by cigarette companies.

On the incoherence of antivaccine cranks at an antivaccine quackfest

Dr. James Lyons-Weiler was asked by Shelley Wynter how are safety studies selected when they are used for safety (2/1:40:30). Dr. Lyons-Weiler started by responding to a question posited by an audience member prior to the intermission who asked if autism rates were really rising. He informed her to print this reference by Cynthia Nevison and Mark Blaxill. He picked up a metal detector, jumped to the subject of “healthy user bias” and pretended to speak to Dr. Paul Offit:

”How can one man be so wrong about so many things so often?!”

The audience howled with laughter, and Dr. Lyons-Weiler looked very pleased with himself. This was the point the audience was asked about who stopped vaccinating because of vaccine injury. He considered this “empirical observation of data” in their families. Lyons-Weiler said these vaccine-injured people take themselves out of studies to explain how healthy user bias occurs.

Next jumped to his introduction of vaccine skepticism when he wrote his book Cures vs. Profits and related how, while writing the chapter about vaccines, he remembered something about Andrew Wakefield, searched him on the internet then found out about Brian Hooker and Dr. William Thompson, the latter of whom Dr. Lyons-Weiler proclaimed to be, “a protected whistleblower” due to Dr. David Lewis’ struggles. He regurgitated the CDC Whistleblower talking points (frequently deconstructed by Orac and others), such as hiding results, putting Dr. Thompson on leave so Dr. DeStefano could appear before the IOM and [forging data] is standard practice for all vaccine safety research studies. Dr. Lyons-Weiler read “all the vaccine safety research:” studies as a result, two thousand of them he said. He used SafeMinds as a resource and claimed adverse events are ignored because Barbara McCormick (her name is actually Mary) said, “I don’t have a free weekend, do you?” (Various iterations of this appear only on anti-vaccine sites).

Lyons-Weiler also criticized the Verstraeten thimerosal study because the authors corrected for confounding variables such as maternal age, gestation length, birth weight, mother’s income and nutritional status. He explained that vaccinating “low birth weight, high risk children” with MMR are excluded [from vaccine safety studies] and called this “translational failure”.

He also announced he has a research study under review and the topic is the application of his own “Objective Evaluation Score (OES) to 46 epidemiological studies on vaccines and autism.

Amusingly, Lyons-Weiler claimed he’s an expert in study design and developing scoring systems since he had graded “thousands of students”. The highest score a study can obtain is +12, the average score of all the studies he evaluated was -6.61 and only one study, D’Souza et al. 2006 received a score of +4. He did not evaluate any anti-vaccine research studies with his own scoring method. He said epidemiological studies “have failed us” and when we demand a vaccinated versus unvaccinated study, it must be only a “randomized clinical trial only” because causation can’t be determined from epidemiological studies. He stated:

”There is no valid science that vaccines do not cause autism.”

I feel compelled to stipulate that while I am not a great writer, Dr. Lyons-Weiler’s presentation really was this disordered. [Orac notes that, even though he is a great writer and editor, even he couldn’t make a lot of sense of this description of Lyons-Weiler’s segment.]

Questions and bad answers

The final question and answer session began (2/1:55:59):

Q: My daughter is vaccine-injured from Gardasil and has the MTHFR mutation and can’t detox. Why don’t doctors test for this?
A (Toni Bark): Most doctors don’t know they can get these studies, these are epigenetic studies looking at single nucleotide polymorphic variants. This is very hard to find research but can only be found in Shoenfeld’s book on autoimmunity, geneticists don’t know about it, mainstream medical doesn’t accept it. James Lyons-Weiler concurred and essentially said that animal models in autoimmunity studies are applicable to humans and autoimmunity is induced in certain genetically-modified mice and rats with only 5x AlOH per body weight.

Q: What is correlation between pesticides and what’s in vaccine ingredients?
A: David Lewis said to watch his video Below the Fruited Plain. Mixtures of chemicals and vaccines create a doomsday scenario. He claimed the head of the USDA (at some time in the past) said under oath, “So long as it’s supported by hundreds of studies, it’s okay if the data are fabricated.”

Q: Do fetal cell lines used in vaccines contribute to genetic mutations and duplications?
A: Sherri Tenpenny answered yes and “transession” occurs which is a process of incorporating the DNA of one set of cells into another (2/2:11:30). Del Bigtree informed the audience that Dr. Theresa Deisher is the leading expert on that; she’s one of the top scientists in the world. She did a study putting MMR with stem cells and they mutate. Del Bigtree said top geneticists say residual DNA in vaccines don’t incorporate into cells but Del Bigtree informed us that’s not true. Toni Bark clarified that it’s fragmented DNA, not cells that’s in vaccines; Sherri Tenpenny said, “that’s not true, there are cells”.

Q: Which is the bigger public health threat, Gardasil or cervical cancer?
A: The entire panel said Gardasil. James Lyons-Weiler explained that older women are at a higher risk of per-cancerous lesions after HPV vaccination and this is known as “negative efficacy” and Mary Holland researched this and her book is in the lobby [for sale]. The audience member who asked the question stated that HPV vaccination will never prevent cervical cancer, it was designed to prevent “the little warts” and it causes more cancers. Del Bigtree claimed,

”that for every 100,000 women, 8 will get cervical cancer and 2 will die but if you vaccinated 100,000 women with the HPV vaccine, 2,300 of them will have a life threatening adverse event. You do the math.”

Toni Bark added, “and 1 out of 792 women died in their study who received the HPV vaccine. We would have to kill 99 women to get one less cervical cancer death.” Dr. Chris Shaw mentioned Sin Hang Lee and his discovery of viral DNA complexed with aluminum adjuvant in Gardasil but was widely ignored by the CDC and other governmental agencies as not true but it was true. He went on to say, “he can’t think of a better way to create autoimmunity than complexing aluminum with DNA and sticking it in your brain-you’re asking for serious trouble if you do that”. The audience reacted very strongly to the discussion about HPV vaccination as did all the panelists.

Del Bigtree concluded with a very dramatic “call to action” and claimed pharmaceutical companies kept pro-vaccine people who wanted to be here from coming, “This is what science looks like and these people are doing important science” he proclaimed as he pointed to the panelists. He implored all in “cyberworld” to call every hospital, doctor and ask why they won’t stand up.

[Note added by our minion: The last audience member to pose the question about HPV in the second block was none other than Judy Mikovits of the bizarre and tawdry tale of data manipulation, study retraction, theft and arrest. It appears as though she has taken up the anti-HPV vaccination crusade. I did not realize it was her at the time but put it together after reviewing some of the video.]

Final observations from a pro-science minion

This concludes my account of the the speakers’ presentations at One Conversation but I would like to offer a few words of “post-hoc” analysis. We are all very familiar with these speakers and their respective antivaccine “bodies of work” but the impression I had of them prior to this event was probably like most of yours. That impression evolved seeing these speakers in person and interacting with a primarily anti-vaccine audience. They all have a savior complex along with a persecution complex; they genuinely believe they are correct and competent and have appointed themselves thought leaders to guide scared or hurting anti-vaccine parents and nuture their “vaccine-injured” children. That they have carved out a way to monetize anti-vaccinationism is not mutually-exclusive with sincerely-held beliefs. I have difficulty reconciling overt and intentional acts of deception on the part of some of the panelists and organizers with their genuine beliefs they are providing a public service and basing their position on pro-vaccine scientists being deceptive and fraudulent regarding vaccine safety.

The panelists seemed blissfully unaware or uncaring that their respective presentations and claims were completely disparate. For example, James Lyons-Weiler said to throw all epidemiological studies in the trash and start all over with RCTs yet he and all of the other panelists rely on anti-vaccine epidemiological studies to form their conclusions and they all applauded him for saying this. I also noticed he didn’t subject any anti-vaccine studies to his “objective evaluation score” to demonstrate their strengths which would be an interesting thing to do if someone here were to take that on.

I actually enjoyed listening to their presentations and gleaning an insight into their motivations that only a personal experience could provide. I frankly don’t think any of the panelists are particularly talented or otherwise notable in their respective fields, but they are highly-ambitious. There was a distinct delusion of group superiority spurred on by an extremely high degree of the Dunning-Kruger effect and validation by their colleagues and audience members. They are very convincing and effective at what they do and are not going away.

[Orac concluding note: I heartily thank Lord Draconis’ minion, and I am sure that the reward for this infiltration will be, as usual, rich. Reading this account, I had a hard time not interjecting frequently my opinion. In actuality, for the most part my editorial touch has been relatively light, mainly consisting of keeping tenses consistent and making some of the prose flow a little better. Oh, sure, I did throw a couple of Orac-isms in there here and there, and I couldn’t resist adding a couple of links to my deconstructions of some of the pseudoscience being spewed at this antivaccine quackfest, but for the most part I restrained myself, which, given the size of my ego, is not easy. Fortunately, our minion has done very, very well indeed. I also fear that I must agree with the conclusion. Antivax activists like the members of this panel do seem to have a persecution/savior complex, and some of them are indeed very persuasive to people who don’t know the science. We will need to continue to be vigilant.]

By Orac

Orac is the nom de blog of a humble surgeon/scientist who has an ego just big enough to delude himself that someone, somewhere might actually give a rodent's posterior about his copious verbal meanderings, but just barely small enough to admit to himself that few probably will. That surgeon is otherwise known as David Gorski.

That this particular surgeon has chosen his nom de blog based on a rather cranky and arrogant computer shaped like a clear box of blinking lights that he originally encountered when he became a fan of a 35 year old British SF television show whose special effects were renowned for their BBC/Doctor Who-style low budget look, but whose stories nonetheless resulted in some of the best, most innovative science fiction ever televised, should tell you nearly all that you need to know about Orac. (That, and the length of the preceding sentence.)

DISCLAIMER:: The various written meanderings here are the opinions of Orac and Orac alone, written on his own time. They should never be construed as representing the opinions of any other person or entity, especially Orac's cancer center, department of surgery, medical school, or university. Also note that Orac is nonpartisan; he is more than willing to criticize the statements of anyone, regardless of of political leanings, if that anyone advocates pseudoscience or quackery. Finally, medical commentary is not to be construed in any way as medical advice.

To contact Orac: [email protected]

92 replies on “Adventures of a science-based mole at an antivaccine crankfest (conclusion)”

well may i say ..god save the queen … cause nothing is gunna save this debate…hmmmm… happy bob cheers from oz

You must be from Australia.

For those who do not know the reference, it was a paraphrasing of a comment made the former Australian prime minister, Gough Whitlam, after he was relieved of his prime ministership by the queen’s representative in Australia, the Governor General, Sir John Kerr. The Governor General notionally has this power but it never actually supposed to be used.

Just to add…
For anyone interested in Australian politics (I’m guessing on one 🙂 ), this is an excellent account of one of the most controversial political events in Australian history from the pre-eminent public broadcaster, the ABC.
(There is a nefarious campaign by the present government to de-finance the ABC)

Not a single thing said by Sears was even remotely correct. Sears should not be caring for children as a physician. I doubt he’s competent to even add water to raise sea monkeys.

The big question is, did anything Doc Bob say rise to the level of promoting vaccine disinformation IAW his medical board agreement? I would love to see a transcript and copy of the video sent to the California medical board with the errant parts highlighted.

Reported AEs increased after “delitigation” ie after 1978 ? After VAERS, where it is far easier to report AEs, was created ? Imagine that.
Also, how the frick do doctors earn benefits from vaccines if they are reimbursed by insurance companies ? In my mind, “reimbursed” simply means that our costs are covered, not that you make a profit.

I believe she meant that the doctor she used as an example purchased vaccines with a credit card that earned airline miles and then was reimbursed by an insurance company. Also, the response below was supposed to be a reply to your first question.

No she didn’t. What you saw in the slide is what she presented. In fact she said that pharmaceutical companies don’t have advertising or liability costs for vaccines, implying that they make even more profit.

A little off-topic:The Mennonites also refuse to vaccinate. They are sort of Amish Lite. One of them may have given me the influenza I am just now recovering from when she sneezed on me from about two feet away in a grocery store checkout line, and I belatedly saw that her toddler was obviously sick. A couple of Mennonites have told me that there’s no need to vaccinate their kids because they are mostly home-schooled here and generally don’t have contact with non-Mennnonites. .

Also a bit off-topic and truly frightening: Some of the real extremists are holding chicken pox parties to deliberately infect their kids. I’ve seen three articles on this now. It seems to be a trend in California in particular. This is their latest and greatest self-righteous advocacy of natural immunity, and it seems to be a growing thing throughout the US.

I got last year’s vaccine, so what I just got–perhaps from them–was probably a strain not covered by last year’s vaccine. And….you misconstrued my post. I believe I got sick from them. Please re-read. Your comment is somewhat rude and oblivious. I would never go out in public if I thought I had anything that contagious and potentially dangerous to others.

I wasn’t able to find a good data link for the overall vaccination rate for Mennonites in the U.S. But, it is probably higher than the rate for the Amish communities because many Mennonite children attend regular public schools.

Here is an interesting article supporting vaccination published in The Mennonite 6 years ago, that was written as a reply to a previous article in the same publication calling for “safe vaccines”.

As Mennonites we should be concerned for all the vulnerable in our midst. However, the vulnerable includes the medically fragile and the immunologically weakened who cannot take vaccinations. Their protection depends on their neighbors receiving vaccinations for the welfare of the entire community. Influenced by the anti-vaccine movement, a minority of parents is putting the lives and health of their own children and others at risk and also making preventable epidemics inevitable.

Very interesting and very good to know. Unfortunately the community near here is known as one of the most conservative, and they frown on their children mixing much with non-Mennonite children. They are mostly home-schooled from what I’ve been told and from what a couple of Mennonite mothers have told me. It seems they may be the exception in their sect. I hope so.

Sounds like an oddball sect to me. I have never before heard of anti-vax as a Mennonite thing, and I think it’s totally wrong to say “The Mennonites refuse to vaccinate.” Of course, there are local variances in religious denominations and cultural groups. Conservative ‘Old Order’ Mennonites resemble Amish visually, driving buggies and dressing plain, but don’t follow the same dictum of “be ye not of the world”, which is what leads the Amish to reject many modern technologies. However, the Old Order is a fairly small minority among Mennonites. The sentiments of the pro-vax article squirrelite referenced sounds typical of the Modern Mennonites I knew in Iowa and Pennsylvania. I actually think strong medi-woo is even fairly rare among the Amish – where some kids may not get vaxxed just from not going to see doctors unless they’re sick, but not necessarily because the family is “anti-vax”. For example. the Herschbergers, the Amish family who refused chemo for their daughter Sarah, were oddballs even within their fairly oddball (for Amish) community in Ohio…

I know. I have a cousin who lives on the edge of Holmes County in Ohio and he takes many of the Amish up to Akron for medical treatment.

Agree. I found out today that the local group is considered dissident. I knew an Old Order Amish family in Tennessee–there’s a large community in Perry County–that had no hesitation at all about taking Amos, their father, to a cardiologist when he started having problems. Eventually they had to sell their farm and most of their possessions and move to be with other family in Ohio because they felt they needed stronger support when it was discovered he had quite serious heart problems. Sad to be there when they sold everything…..

People in Kentucky told me that sometimes the anti-tech stand among the communities there could be kind of a crock. Some of the Amish community there hid cars in their barns, as one guy told me when he was hired to do some carpentry they couldn’t handle themselves.

There are too many stereotypes about all the Mennonite sects and the Amish. Some are more extreme than others. The Bontragers I knew were very controlling of their daughter and only tolerated my friend and me because Ella, their mother, was giving us quilting lessons. Long story there. They were very, very Old Order but had sense enough to realize Amos was in real trouble and needed the best medical care he could get. He eventually needed a bypass but was lucky to have very strong social and family support in his recovery.

I’m glad Amos got the care he needed.

Technological choices are dependent on a ruling by the minister of the local church, so it can vary a bit from location to location. My cousin showed me a shared freezer that is rented by an Amish family group. And I understand a lot of the teenagers are using tech stuff that would have been unheard of even 30 years ago.

When they reach a certain age, each one has to make a lifestyle choice and it can depend a lot on availability of a farm and the type of work they prefer. Many work in a plant making pet food or a lumberyard, taking advantage of the oaks and maples that grow on the knobby hills in northeastern Ohio.

And the Amish measles epidemic may have raised awareness of this concern.

I wish there could be an edit feature here. If there is, I don’t know how to find it or use it.

What I meant to say was that the Mennonite community here–emphasis here–is apparently an outlier and is averse to vaccinating themselves or their kids. I’ve had a couple of conversations with young mothers about this. They believe they’re protected because their kids generally interact only with other children in their community. One young mother said their community disagrees with the overall Mennonite preference to integrate with the larger community. My impression now is that they are somewhat renegade.

Doesn’t matter to me, though. I was vaccinated with last years’s vaccine and got sick within days of being exposed to a sick mother and her very blatantly sick toddler. If this community wants little interaction with the outside world, then why did she go out when she and her child were obviously sick?!? After a month I am still recovering. Pure selfishness, I think, tempered by some abject ignorance….

A few things…

It bothers me when ( white**) anti-vaxxers/ woo-meisters target black people as marks by using words like discrimination ***, saying back of the bus, citing the “corrupt” study of black kids ( Thompson) etc. It seems like they are trying to take advantage of those whom they may perceive, * very unfairly*, as being less educated or as gullible. I hear this all of the time when a woo-meister specifically focuses on the African American community by claiming friendship with AA celebrities, fixing up their “poor diets”/ attitudes and working with their churches ( PRN) as a prelude to selling them products. Also Andy’s work in the Somali community, hurting Somali kids.
Did anyone else see an actor in a television commercial who resembles Del Bigtree? It’s a guy building something in his yard who takes an OTC remedy for pain. Maybe that’s how he pays his bills.
Lyons- Weiler used to comment at RI several years ago.

You’ve done a great job, Minion-mole. Maybe a promotion is forthcoming.

** in reality, I’ve only seen a few black anti-vaxxers : Dr Nancy Banks, Sheila Ealey, Tony Muhammad. I’m not exactly thrilled with any anti-vaxxers though.
*** also a problem when anti-vaxxers ( e.g. Rossi, TMs) claim discrimination when people reject their messages. This is the new wave of “me too”.

It’s not because you’re women: it’s because you make no sense. So I guess I’m “against women speaking out” ( to them)

in reality, I’ve only seen a few black anti-vaxxers

The clinic where my PCP is based has always been chock-full of young black women with kids in tow complaining about getting their shots. Peds/OB-GYN is three or four times the size of internal medicine there, as well.

It’s the kids complaing about having to get jabbed. The moms are just telling them to pipe down.

For some reason, my paragraphs/ markers disappeared. ( black issues/ Del/ Lyons-Weiler)
It must be hacking. AGAIN.

I’d like to thank Anonymous Vaccine Minion for a write-up that is so tedious, so lacking in factual support and so thick with personal attacks, that even the most die-hard true vaccine believer might be inspired to watch One Conversation for themselves rather than slog their way through it. Kudos.

NWO Reporter meant to say “One Con”. Thankfully most people aren’t falling for the crap NWO slops.

Your attempt at reverse psychology fu is weak and clumsy, like that of an awkward child.

You’re welcome NWO Reporter. I reported what the speakers said in their own words and you can confirm that by watching the videos. If you have an issue with the “factual support” of what the speakers said then then take it up with them. I don’t see where I engaged in personal attacks furthermore, those in glass houses…
And I should hope that those who are skeptical of my reporting watch the videos, something you should have done prior to making your hastily thought-out comment.

Minion Mole, it’s you who needs to read more carefully before making hasty comments. I didn’t claim you inaccurately reported what was said. In fact, you don’t seem to dare to challenge any of it, beyond giving it a snarky spin to suggest it’s inaccurate. Frivolous insults like “on the incoherence of antivaccine cranks at an antivaccine quackfest” don’t really add anything to our body of knowledge, do they?

Why should anyone read your long, tedious “report” rather than simply watch the presentation for themselves? It wouldn’t take much longer, and it sure as heck would be more interesting and informative.

Hey, don’t tell us what we should do. If we want to watch the video we will watch the video t. If we want to read the account we will read the account. If we want to do both we will do both. I have limited time so I had to choose. I chose to read the account instead of watching the video of a group of ignorant propagandists speaking to a even more ignorant audience (except for the mole of course).

In fact, you don’t seem to dare to challenge any of it, beyond giving it a snarky spin to suggest it’s inaccurate.

I don’t need to challenge; their own statements speak volumes.

Frivolous insults like “on the incoherence of antivaccine cranks at an antivaccine quackfest” don’t really add anything to our body of knowledge, do they?

If you can manage to stop clutching your pearls, perhaps you’d notice the other several thousand words I wrote that are simple reporting of the panelists statements.

It wouldn’t take much longer, and it sure as heck would be more interesting and informative.

Please avail yourself of the videos then if you are so pained by my reporting of an anti-vaccine event.

BillyJoe, it’s a serious mistake to get your information about the opposition from their opposition. It’s like letting one side of a debate tell you why they won, and why you don’t need to listen to the other side before pronouncing them winner. But, hey–they’re pro-vaccine–I’m sure no one who promotes vaccines would ever try to mislead you. They would never cherry-pick or omit important points or engage in other deception, or disparage their opponents unfairly, would they? LOL. I guess it does have its humorous side.

It wouldn’t take much longer

I see that your reading skills are on the sluggish side, Ginny. I guess a life of boilerplate quasi lawyering can have that effect.

@NWO Faux Reporter:

You said, “so lacking in factual support ” That’s what “inaccurately reporting” means.

You can’t have it both ways.

Watch One Con instead of reading about it? No thanks. By way of comparison, I don’t have to listen to a speech by Donald Trump to know that he is a malignant idiot.

In a feat of endurance almost as impressive as the Minion Conference Attendee’s, a logic-afflicted reader has turned in a bravura review of J.B. Handley’s “How To End The Autism Epidemic”*.

Denice: “For some reason, my paragraphs/ markers disappeared. ( black issues/ Del/ Lyons-Weiler)
It must be hacking. AGAIN.”

I’ve put in a call to Sharyl Attkisson, so you two can commiserate.

*Next up from Skyhorse Press: “How To End The Plague Of Ludicrously Bad Antivax Books”.

Handley’s book looks even dumber than Jay Gordon’s flop “Preventing Autism”. No surprise there.

Oh, Dangerous One!

I doubt that she and I would have much to discuss being that I actually studied subject matter which she reports upon. I guess we could always talk about hair styles or jackets… on second thought, no.

I “targeted” Lewis?

Now I understand him, He is a disgusting malignant liar. He knows perfectly well that he huddled with Wakefield and started hawking abuse of me before I ever heard of him. I’ve never had the slightest interest in him, and have done nothing with regard to him, but respond to his ignorant abuse.

He really is one piece of work.

Mr. Deer, Dr. Lewis didn’t make a single mention of his “collaboration” with Wakefield and since I knew the back story regarding what transpired between him and you, I think my eyes may have rolled a bit when he falsely described the origin of his initial interaction with you.

His whole mission was a collaboration with Wakefield, in which Lewis purported to exonerate him, and they then issued a series of press releases in 2011. I only heard about Lewis when he attempted to gain publication of a bizarre attack on me in a relatively minor biomedical journal. That rejected his attempt, and he then bombarded the BMJ, University College London and UKRIO, the UK research integrity group, with a massive document accusing me and the BMJ of fraud.

In UKRIO’s case, he produced a document presented in such a sly way that an ordinary reader would think it was published by them. I understand that they wrote to him about this. He also emailed a witness in the GMC case using a University of Georgia email account, as if he was working at a unit of the university, when he’d been let go from there, and used a quite different email address in his other activities.

The guy who he wrote to was a professor of pediatric gastroenterology, who wrote a report for the GMC’s ;awyers, which Wakefield gave to Lewis, essentially saying more or less what I wrote later in the BMJ about Wakefield’s gut histopathology. Lewis then spread it around that I was in conspiracy with the professor, and that I was “instructed” by the GMC’s lawyers.

Lewis knew so little about the gut that he claimed that colitis had been found in the small intestines of children. And yet he made out that he was some kind of authority. I was terribly grateful to him, however, since he thought that histopathology grading sheets which Wakefield gave him exonerated Wakefield. In fact, because I knew quite a lot about gut histopathology, I knew within minutes that they showed how Wakefield had misreported normal bowel pathology as a new disease caused by MMR. We put that out to a string of pathologists and gastroenterologists who all confirmed my judgment.

It was great.

However, all of my activities with regard to Lewis were reactive. Since he isn’t a figure of any consequence, I’ve paid no attention to him – even his recent scheme to try to sell diagnostic kits.

He started on me in January 2011, and it seems he’s still at it. I pity anybody caught in his malignant fantasies.

One thing that seems new in these presentations (at least to me) is Dr Tenpenny’s touting the advantage of “natural herd immunity” over “medical herd immunity” !?

She cites data from a study of transmission back in the 30’s (and before) that show reduced transmission when about 55% of the population has acquired immunity from the disease itself as somehow better than the 95-98% target rate for measles vaccinations to eliminate endemic transmission. But this was what we had back in the 50’s when the rates fluctuated up and down from year to year. But, overall millions of people got the measles every year and hundreds still died from it.

How she can claim this is better than only a handful of people getting the disease and its side effects and no one dying from it is mind-boggling. It puts her right up there with CP2, who flat out makes that claim every time a news article about vaccination gets posted.

This is great. Sears really gave up on pretending to be anything but anti-vaccine.

Just one note: DeLong is an economist, to my knoweldge. Not a lawyer.

Corrected. I somehow mixed her up in my mind with Marry Holland, who is a lawyer who also thinks she’s an epidemiologist. ?‍♂️

The average number of measles cases each year has been 128 except for 2014 with the Disneyland outbreak and that had 667 cases but what “they” don’t tell you was that 400 of those cases occurred in one area of Ohio.

I don’t imagine that the 136 Disneyland cases in Lanaudière count, either. What could these two have in common?

MJD as a peanut nutty commentator? I’m thinking there’s a correlation. Maybe he’s been the vector all along

Lanaudière’s correct pronounciation would be an intelligence test for them. I suspect they didn’t pass the test so they (the Lanaudière’s peoples) don’t count.


I don’t know if I’m seeing a positive shift in thinking, or just lucky, but every one of my clinic visits these past few weeks, all patients/parents agreed to get/get caught up with their shots.

A small chunk of (belated) good news for your weekend:

A paper that has been infesting the pathology literature since 2002 has now been retracted. The article (by Bernard Rimland and Woody McGinnis, appearing in Lab Medicine, a publication of the American Society of Clinical Pathology), which piggybacked on the notorious Wakefield paper in Lancet, apparently was felt to be too much of an embarrassment as well as encouragement to the antivax sect to remain unchallenged.

A link to the paper:–XB_Rpxz3rhD6a2ijRnmFjN18iQ_9hktvJPj0C00saJaLMEzusedgcigomG9kGUri2XrV1pDTHLA1cEIP6Z7B-5qHKhJgHNvXMN2LlYxdoULbZqhX2WiMGQAAfxCWp5ySWghcYRnE_BvBkahHAtIQ-h4Tn1CMS-lv6HldrGy7jdgPH0Elwio89GVkux0KMGeAXxJp7OWCjcuY4unFDn2kO3FGmogPX2-k4Gu3pzRxM9Of5WCXkIHOzgzIbilT7fn-gmz141eQeW7Hf9qBoM1fU8T2mHiGwUWHTi

More on the story:

Unsurprisingly, a dogged autism “investigator” has recognized that the retraction is part of a nefarious Pharma plot and has alerted us to the Truth on his website.

While Rimland is deceased, his co-author McGinnis was (at least as of 2015) still doing or at least promoting some sort of autism research. The most recent of his papers I can find in PubMed is a lengthy article from 2013 on brain-specific loci implicated in autism and allegedly susceptible to a variety of toxins including (but not limited to) mercury, cadmium, MSG and fluoride. It covers a lot of territory (including the social behavior of voles) and includes an anecdote about a four-year-old who mentally regressed after getting six amalgam fillings but improved after chelation therapy. The whole extravaganza is available online as a free PDF.

I remember McGinnis’ name from his Orthomolecular-Psychiatry / oxidative stress enthusiasm. Look up “McGinnis “Mauve Factor”.

He has links with the network of shameless scoundrels and grifters who piggyback on the alt-med autism-cure scams by selling worthless blood-test services for Mauve Factor, Kryptopyrrole, Adrenochrome, Ceruloplasmin, Nagalase, and Chronic Lyme Disease.

Scientists quieting deceased scientists, disheartening to say the least. Sometimes, information that’s deemed incorrect is later found to be a catalyst for new hypotheses.

Shortly before Dr. Rimland died, he jokingly called MJD the “rubber man” before a Defeat Autism Conference in San Diego, California. Guess what, this great man allowed MJD to present a poster at the conference. Thank you Dr. Rimland, and it saddens me that your being silenced.

“Guess what, this great man allowed MJD to present a poster at the conference.”
Dr. Dunning, meet Mr. Kruger.

Scientists quieting deceased scientists, disheartening to say the least.

If only Eine neue wissenschaftliche Wahrheit pflegt sich nicht in der Weise durchzusetzen, daß ihre Gegner überzeugt werden und sich als belehrt erklären, sondern vielmehr dadurch, daß ihre Gegner allmählich aussterben und daß die heranwachsende Generation von vornherein mit der Wahrheit vertraut gemacht ist were actually the case here.

Slightly OT… do people in the UK know about the anti-HLV Vaccine conference, planned for London?

Organised by “The Liberty Beacon”, which is to say Roger Landry, a professional Putin-propagandist / conspiracist and Trumpist; perhaps more overtly racist and antisemitic than others in the industry. His fascist sympathies have not deterred our old friend Christina England from becoming part of TLB, nor Exley and Dwoskin from climbing into bed to participate in this scamboree.

People have contacted the venue (the Notting Hill Tabernacle) to apprise them of the sheer vileness of the people who booked their premises.

It looks as though the venue changed, this message is from their website:

The venue is booked and confirmed and it will be announced on Ticket Tailor a few days before the conference.

Ah, thank you. Please keep us posted how this ends. I wonder what’s going pear-shaped in Exley’s career that he has dropped any pretense at not full on anti-vaxx.

Just look at the list of speakers. Did you ever see such a parade of charlatans and fraudsters?

Keynote speaker – Dr. Graham Downing – Consultant healthcare practitioner with areas of expertise in Neuro-musculoskeletal & Functional Medicine, with special interest in infection, fertility, endocrine & neuro-developmental disorders

Brandy Vaughan – Ex-Merck pharma rep turned REAL HEALTH advocate. Founder of #beBRAVE #betheCHANGE

Leslie Carol Botha – Womans Health Educator and Hormone Expert – USA

Dr. Jayne Donegan MBBS DRCOG DCH DFFP MRCGP MFHom – GP & Homoeopathic Physician with Certified Specialist Accreditation in Medical Homeopathy from the Faculty of Homeopathy, London.

Senta Depuydt – Belgian free-lance journalist in health and education, writing for independent magazines. She organized the premiere of Vaxxed in Brussels, Paris and London in partnership with the EFVV and rallied French lobbyists to oppose new vaccine mandates in France. She is a board member of the French “Ligue Nationale pour la Liberté de Vacciner” and of the “European Forum for Vaccine Vigilance”.

Anthony Hughes – B.Sc Dip.Chem.Eng., Dip.Stats. & O.R. Licentiate in Traditional Chinese Medicine Clinical Certificate (Nanjiing) China

Juliette Scarfe – Lawyer and Entrepreneur, Organic Formulator, Writer, Speaker, Healer, Holistic Nutritionist UK

Professor Christopher Exley PhD – Keele University – Expert in Aluminum UK (filmed interview with Christina England)

Steven Hinks – representing the UK Association of HPV Vaccine Injured Daughters (AHVID), who will be speaking about their work and introducing Ruby Shallom and Christy Cormack, two young ladies who have been severely injured by the vaccine.

Christina England BA Hons – Research Journalist and Author

Amanda Dew BSc Hons – Mother of HPV Vaccine Injured Child

The latest update is that Exley is not attending this Conman Corroboree in person, but in the form of a taped interview with that noted fabulist and Munchausen’s-Syndrome-by-Proxy advocate, Christina England. Perhaps he hopes to retain some vestige of credibility as a scientist despite his current choice of bed-partners.

Senta Depuydt – Belgian free-lance journalist in health and education, writing for independent magazines.

There’s always free weekly alterno-rags to aspire to.

Quite the list of grifters and charlatans. I don’t think they are any more impressive than the cranks on this side of the pond though. I see Donegan’s dust up with the GMC has been spun nicely into martyrdom for her. I think I see a pattern emerging for anti-Vaxxers referring to themselves as whistleblowers.

You’re not a whistleblower unless you actually expose wrong doing at your place of employment, and they retaliate against you for it.

Being a crank doesn’t count.

The judge found this doctor guilty of using “selective quotations”, of making “unsubstantiated claims”, and of “being confused in her thinking, lacking logic, minimising the duration of a disease, making statements lacking valid facts, ignoring the facts, ignoring the conclusion of papers, making implications without any scientific validation, giving a superficial impression of a paper, not presenting the counter argument, quoting selectively from papers, and of providing in one instance no data and no facts to support her claim”. It was Dr Donegan’s evidence that Lord Justice Sedley dismissed as “junk science” at the subsequent appeal.

However, the GMC decided that incompetence and incomprehension were no barrier to continuing her medical practice. Yes, her expert testimony to the court was a stream of nonsense that took every opportunity to pick cherries and twist the facts, but it was OK because she didn’t really believe it: “You demonstrated to the panel that your report did not derive from your deeply held views“.

I volunteer at the local health clinic on vaccination days. Agree with Narad that it’s the kids who don’t want the jab. The few conversations I’ve had with parents show that they have almost no awareness about why vaccinations are necessary. That’s a middle-class thing. They really don’t get it. They show up because someone made them show up because it was a requirement for something. The educational deficit about this is horrifying. Almost everyone I’ve spoken to does not have English as their first language and does not understand the need for vaccination. We have to tackle the educational barrier.

The few conversations I’ve had with parents show that they have almost no awareness about why vaccinations are necessary. That’s a middle-class thing.

Given that I’m not a health-care provider, I can’t really speculate on how well the physicians are educating these young women, but my bit of anecdata leads me to believe that these mothers are keeping up on their well-being visits. What I do know is that there’s a good amount of extended parenting in this part of the woods, so I think at leat part of it might be grandmothers at work.

I don’t see that. I see a lot of papas taking babies to the clinic–a really good sign, I think, because child care is not falling only to mamas. I don’t see grandparents much because I think a lot of people can’t afford to bring extended family to the US. Or maybe I just don’t see them. The docs and nurses who are vaccinating and assessing for risk or active infection have no time to educate people. Last week we had about three hundred children in less than five hours. One child got about five minutes of attention. Such a wasted opportunity to educate or possibly provide some kind of insta-primary care, as you say.

Not sure whether my other post got posted….No, the concept of well-baby visits does not exist for this population, and it is not always women who are the primary caregivers. They have told me through translators that they wish grandparents could be with them, but sometimes that is impossible. I don’t think we can presume that extended families exist among immigrant populations once they leave their home countries.

I understand what you’re saying, but I’ve been referring to my experience with the South Side of Chicago, so we may be talking past each other.

Sara said: “They show up because someone made them show up because it was a requirement for something. The educational deficit about this is horrifying.”

For a parent to willingly allow their child to be injected with anything, often several shots at once, indicates they had to have been ‘educated’ that vaccines are ‘safe and effective and saved the world’–no caring parent would subject their child to such a painful and invasive procedure otherwise.

Even well-known vaccine champion and investor Dr. Paul Offit has admitted: “…vaccination is a violent act…and you pin the child down, you give them this biological agent against their will. The biological agent generally isn’t understood well by the parent…and some would say not understood all that well by the physician. I’m not sure we do a great job at educating physicians about exactly what vaccines are and how they work…”

On the other hand, it does indicate a horrifying lack of unbiased education about vaccination…as well as a terrifying blind trust and unwillingness to question authority on the part of both patient and doctor.

Uh, hello, troll. It should have been obvious from my post that I was referring to IMMIGRANTS who are given solid information about this through translators but who are still often a bit confused because of language barriers. Please go away. You are really polluting the conversation and wasting the time of people who really understand this issue.

Don’t bother engaging with Nit-Wit Oaf Distorter. It’s like wrestling with a pig – you end up in a mess while the pig enjoys it. Ignore him long enough and eventually he’ll go back under his bridge.

Please go away.

It’s hard to be a glorified collections agent who pines for Rappaport and has a moribund Web site.

Yeah, that is a very rough place. I am in the Deep South where the problems are a bit similar but the population is totally different. Praise to you for dealing with problems on the south side of Chicago. Problems there are complex and very serious and unique to that community. They cope with a lot that is a mystery and poorly understood by the rest of the US.

Apologies to Orac if this is the wrong place to post this comment…. I deal on a volunteer basis with many immigrant groups who really need to be vaccinated. It’s a huge feat to transcend language barriers, because we are trying to tell them about this in seven and sometimes more languages. There are huge cultural barriers to routine vacs, too. If anyone has suggestions, please tell me.

Sara, I was a practicing physician assistant in NYC and elsewhere in the metro area for twenty years. The last hospital I worked in was on the Nassau County – NYC Borough of Queens border, which at the time were respectively the first and nineteenth largest destinations for immigrants. For a time I was also involved in the AAPA Cross-Cultural Medicine Caucus and gave CME talk on “Cross-Cultural Medicine at Home”.
One thing that can work is to find leaders in their communities to endorse the vaccination campaign. They could be clergy, a community activist, or a popular local politician. If you can bring the message in their original language that also goes a long way, best coming from yourself but through a trusted interpreter if you must. Be aware of cultural sensitivities. If they see you are making a sincere effort, it builds trust. Eat their food. Learn to greet them in their own languages. Usually, their children are the center of their life here, and they may be drafted at a young age to be their families’ interpreters and guides to American life, so putting an emphasis on doing it for their children can be a really productive approach.
I know these are generalities, but I hope they help.

Fantastic suggestions! Thank you! I will pass this on. Unfortunately we are not in New York (insert sad face emoji here). The infrastructure for helping them here is shaky to completely weak. We often have to just wing it and improvise. Sometimes we can’t even get a real translator. I often have to just hug people and use my own questionable language skills to try to say that we will get better help when we can find someone who can talk to them. Sometimes they get it, sometimes not. Out here in the hinterlands it can be very difficult to help them.

In other anti-vax news….

Anti-vaxxers are happy to have a reason to attack Dr Paul Offit who whilst being interviewed by ZDoggMD ( YouTube Oct 19 ) said that men who became fathers at age 60, like Trump and DeNiro, may have children with autism. The usual suspects accuse him of “outing” Barron Trump.
Offit apologised but it wasn’t enough for them as he is a “genocidalist” and profiteer.
I assume we’ll hear more on this.

While Dr. Offit gaffed and quickly responded, I find it rich that the same people who criticise Dr. Offit are the same ones who think nothing of posting all kinds of invasive personal information about their special needs children who cannot consent.

I’m really interested in the legal repercussions of the anti-vax issue with these people’s implicit belief that they own their children (also have a background in clinical psychology). It goes way beyond some kind of hyper-libertarian desire to “keep the guvmint’s grubby hands off my kids.” My somewhat uninformed opinion from talking to a few of these people is that they tend to be very rigid and authoritarian and unironically resist any authority except their own. They clearly believe it is their right and privilege to impose their will on their kids in an often disturbing way.

Statistically it seems that many child endangerment and welfare cases involve parents who are self-declared libertarians or members of various cranky groups with avowed beliefs amounting to “my child is my property.” The numbers add up, but I’ve been looking in the literature and don’t see much good analysis.

I haven’t found a really good systematic review and would welcome evidence. I suspect this is probably systematically true of many anti-vax groups because superficially it seems that many of these fanatics think their children are their property.

Sorry to be so badly informed about this…..It raises a legal issue that I just don’t know anything about right now.

Sorry for errors/little typos that I didn’t catch. You can’t go back and edit on WordPress blogs. Yurggh.

Friend of a friend says that Barron Trump is in a program for spectrum kids, and his mother has jumped through hoops to hide it. He is autistic.

I have done nothing of the kind. You are overreacting. If I were a nasty person I would have publicized it. I have not. That little boy is known at his school to be autistic. It has been kept private, and I will also keep it private. Sit down and calm down and stop your spurious/specious accusations.

If I were a nasty person I would have publicized it. I have not.

You just did.

That little boy is known at his school to be autistic. It has been kept private, and I will also keep it private.

How is it private if you are publicly proclaiming it and spreading rumours? He didn’t ask for any of this and he’s entitled to every bit of privacy that we are.

I wanted to alert people to this because anti-vaxxers are using it as another way to attack Dr Offit.

I should have said ( or maybe Offit himself should have said ) “Men who are older, over 40, 50 or 60” without mentioning the fathers’ names ( although DeNiro has been very public and people obviously can figure out how old the Donald was )

Offit was trying ( I believe) to illustrate how autism is not be based on vaccines or other post natal ** events. Anti-vaxxers scoff at any data that examines variables like these ( age of mother/ father, mother’s weight, genetics etc ***) because it shows that vaccines ARE NOT the cause.

** but not necessarily peri-natal events
*** a while ago on RI, I listed data that showed how autism can be detected prior to usual detection through speech communication at age 18 months- 2 years( brain waves, gaze in infancy, movement patterns, head size, facial proportions, etc)

From the Department of Extreme Irony:

I just saw an enthusiastic online review of an antivax book, headlined “Vaccines Harm” and posted by someone identifying herself as an “upper cervical chiropractor”.

Look out for your vertebral arteries, folks, the neck-cracker is in town.

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