shhh. . . psst. . . hey kid . . .you wanna be a scientist. . .>>
under construction..The Missing Plague
★ 1.0 THIS ENTRY IS NOT ABOUT VACCINATION
Everyone agrees that financial interests controlling prisons and healthcare is a net positive. One that sees the best outcomes for all involved.
But is it plausible that this common wisdom is not the whole story?
This entry is not about vaccination. This is an entry about science literacy, critical analysis and open methods. The subject is irrelevant. If these items are not squared away, anything that follows is not science.
Vaccines are nothing to write home about. I am not saying they do not “work”, perse (definition dependent). And I am not saying do not get them – I do not much care what you do. However, I am saying the evidence most compelling is that, at best, “vaccines” largely do nothing at all of incredible merit. And at worst, they do ‘something‘; but not very well, and never in the way you would prefer.
At least, of all the insane things people believe, this is actually difficult science. Especially when you get into the complex mechanisms of immunity, and very long term side effects.
The epidemiology is all you need though. And I believe most people will understand most of that. And maybe some methods. And multi step reasoning. For example: Can you have “herd immunity” (in the colloquial sense – it can apply to any intervention, but that is not how it is used, by laymen and specialist alike. Have you ever heard someone on the news explain herd immunity as a concept absent vaccine sales? I haven’t either).
(JHU a2019) (Critical Threshold; R0 QMax Disease Table; Herd Immunity (@ R0 < 1); Quarantine Works)
A vaccine herd immunity is tricky when there will never be full coverage; some people do not respond to vaccination; immunity doesn’t last; you are only ever vaccinating against a few strains; strains also mutate. Among other more complicated points, that we will get to. But is is not ‘anti-vaccination’ to talk honestly about rampant limitations. I wouldn’t even bother, if they didn’t try to stop you so hard.
The key take away is, with over 90% coverage in children: there is no herd immunity. So, even assuming there were no further problems (*and there are further problems), vaccine mediated “magic force-field” herd immunity is a bit of a nonsense. Doesn’t mean don’t get vaccinated, but it is still true.
Australia, with a vaccine efficacy of 95% and measles coverage at 93%, does not have herd immunity. Now multiply that by every disease yo can think of. Now ask why people are always talking about herd immunity.
Americas are the same. Indeed, it is the same everywhere. The cleanest places, with the best vaccines, and best vaccination levels – approaching 100% – do not reach herd immunity. And It is arguable that 100% coverage would not reach it either. And, in fact, annual mass vaccination may be more likely causal in outbreak. If you think for just a moment, you can probably work out why.
There are a few additional key items, outlined above. The vaccine has to ‘work’ (and that has to be defined). Networks of interaction, unknown vectors and misdiagnosis are other concerns. Over-diagnosis, once told to “look for ‘x’” is another (not minor concern, in all of medicine). None of this is to say that we should do nothing, or that everything has to be laboratory confirmed and all followup has to be decades long.
All data is a comparison. You can not interpret measles cases and deaths, for example, if I only give you this year. This is especially true when using global numbers and percentages: Because the world is big, and people are not use to thinking in those terms. Cases reaching 250’000 people is a lot in your state, but not in the world. Also, “cases” does not in any way equate 1 to 1 with “death” (it does mean closer to lifelong immunity for those patients though, in most cases). All of these things are fear mongering sales tricks. Does that mean we should not use a multi-strain effective measles vaccine everywhere we can? Absolutely we should! (*cough* and already do *cough*. Need to get this cough looked at *cough*).
However, if the cases that lead to severe negative outcomes are only in locations where the hygiene, general health and infrastructure is very poor; than using global numbers to skew data sets (alarmingly), with outliers not appropriate for your region, is not just misleading…it is *intentionally* misleading. Intentional, because the people who gather and present these data understand analysis and presentation. Let us further examine measles. Measles cases fluctuate every year. About ~2 million global deaths from measles occurred from 2005-2015. Terrible! Truly. How many in the United States during that period? One. Suspected. (Anecdotally, it was possibly vaccine caused, and from a traveler, but anecdotes. . . so, sure, OK, one.)
If one death a decade is a measles emergency, that requires funding, and research, and awareness campaigns, and screaming at people, and protesting, and closing schools, and taking away patient rights to refuse treatment: imagine if there was a technology, like a vaccine, that could provide blankets or shelter for the homeless! That would be a real miracle.
Or if there were a type of vaccine for nutritional deficiencies, one that grew out of the ground, and wasn’t being thrown in the trash each year. Or imagine if there were a way to not drink alcohol? Dare to dream. But we have our priorities in order. I mean, nowhere is that better demonstrated than with measles.
Can you see how the way vaccine data is being presented may be slightly misleading? And how maybe money going to these companies routinely, without question, every single year (in perpetuity) may not be in the world’s best interest? Nor is it entirely honest to talk with bated breath on Sunday morning shows, about a theoretical “your neighbor” not vaccinating their kid. And this being a “public health crisis emergency!!“? Remember 9/10 people without immunity will get measles if exposed – it is actually that contagious! But. . . did 9/10 people die, ever? And if not, does your hippie neighbor not vaccinating their kid impact the deaths in Africa? And if not – why should you buy one this year. Because the government already did? That is not how business is suppose to work!
And this is getting closer to the heart of things. There is an ebb and flow in disease process meta dynamics that does not suit drug markets. Even (*or especially) if there is an effective, reasonably safe vaccine for a target infection. That is a fact that impacts global markets. But is your primary concern global markets, or your child? Doesn’t someone else have the global markets job! Claims of great benefits from eradication of single diseases is a sales technique. Leave that for now. Let’s stay small. Let’s look at your case.
Imagine this scenario: If there were currently zero deaths from measles, wouldn’t a single death from, whatever you like, someone choking on the vaccine box, make the vaccine more deadly than measles that decade in your region? And if your child’s vaccine was today, and you are a good parent, what is the right choice at that time? Vaccines are all different. And they are not born inherently ‘good’. People who talk in generalities like that are salesmen. Vaccines are, however, all made by the same drug companies that manufacture everything else (*that you are allowed to talk about, because the government doesn’t mass bulk purchase most other products in quite the same way). We’ll come back to some of these points more seriously as we go. Because it is not just measles. Though in the west, measles vaccine coverage is pretty solid:
★ 2.0 WHY WRITE THIS ENTRY?
As a cognitive scientist and health law advocate, it is true; these things rarely come up. My primary interests are research methods and malfeasance in science dissemination. I also have an interest in clinical applications of new media, humor and performance for psycho-social health, as well as an interest issues surrounding the legal right to a painless death. Since you asked.
Science communication, however, is important to me too. And I find it to be a difficult endeavor to execute adeptly. Especially regarding complicated medical topics. Unfortunately, those are the topics where it is commonly most important.
Vaccination, though it does not have to be directly in my main wheelhouse, it is within reach of my toolkit. And it certainly overlaps with aspects of my work. Moreover, it is a popular topic. A topic that is cyclic. One that excites people enough to perhaps look at some graphs. And it is a topic that actually does have some relatively simple answers. Ones that do not result in giving up patient rights to service the interests of large corporate capital, at least not more than we already do.
Generally speaking, due to mass use of these products, we know acute severe negative effects of vaccines are somewhat limited. Or at least for the established ones, presuming the product is unaltered, unadulterated and is what is claimed. We grant that assumption. But beyond that, less is clear. In order to honestly compare rates of adverse events from infection; contemporary infection rates; and also rates of serious enough complications from interventions immediate and across the lifespan: well, that requires an investment of time. And how can we untangle a web across so many fields?
That is why I like training research methods.
☼ Methodology: (If) The Cake Is A Lie. . .
Methodology is the cake of science. The whole cake. If the ingredients are found to be foul, it does not matter how appetizing the science on the other end looks. The cake is a lie.
Our choice, and implementation, of these “x” particular methodologies and assumptions (whatever they happen to be), foreshadow the anticipated outcomes. This is done by way of mere intrinsic assertion; that “this” is the way to capture “such” results honestly. This silent statement is unavoidable.
No matter the field, if you can take apart their design, their statistic use, their misunderstanding of technology; no amount of color graphics, or brain images, or photos of blistered babies in front of iron-lungs can save their under-powered, over claimed, grandiose pseudo work. So, who wants cake?
Vaccines are a socially interesting intervention set. Even the most anti-establishment loons will not critically touch the topic, as a rule. And the mainstream certainly will not. Which is fascinating to me.
But, like any drug, each vaccine is different. And, like nearly all science, the research is generally very poor (I’m sorry. Yeah, nearly all). With conflicts of interest, no follow up of merit in the majority of cases, poor controls, little replication, withheld data, and fervent frothing zealots on either extreme (sometimes saying the same thing, but with slightly different concluding sentences).
And the real trouble is that the rest (the ones in the middle with no information, no interest/ability in exploring the topic), are kind of just along for the ride. But engaged enough to picket a clinic. Or force a patient against their will. Both as ill-informed as the other, for the most part.
Above are recreations of the declining rates of diseases, before vaccine uptake for that illness was began. As you scroll, there will also be examples of similar disease curves, that are similar in trend, but who have no vaccine available at this time. Examples may include the bubonic/pneumonic plague; the Spanish flu; Ebola; HIV. None of these devastating infections have a vaccine. When was the last time someone in your family got the bubonic plague or spanish flu? Why hasn’t Ebola spread to the west, when there is no vaccine yet to protect us? You think that is air you are breathing right now?
Stop trying to question, and question.
3.0 KEY QUESTIONS (As Answers):
If the number needed to harm (NNH) even ballpark aligns for ‘vaccination‘, when compared to ‘infection vaccine is meant to protect against‘: there is no reason to automatically choose vaccination.
If there are cases where vaccine derived infection is a problem, and the corporate solution (to follow compulsory vaccination) is further additional vaccinations, against their vaccines – that requires further attention.
If there are cases, like the 50 million dead from Spanish flu (or the cases of Ebola/Marbug), which were overcome by basic hygiene and not by vaccination; this has to be reconciled (!). Maybe corporate interests monkeying with your immune system is still the better option; but is this an automatic conclusion?
There are a wealth of data, historical and contemporary, which expose the suggestion that most vaccines hold a place as being any kind of “miracle” intervention, to be a dubious proposal.
In some of the cases you have been scrolling past: such claims are, frankly, not even particularly credible. Where this is so, any wishing to claim otherwise hold the burden of proof to support their claims. It is not on us to sell their product to ourselves.
If there was a downward trend in infection cases approaching zero, before even the “great success” famous vaccines were even in use – how can this be ignored?
If the mixture of large corporate pharmaceutical money, in research and diagnostics, is an accepted topic of concern in research – then so it is. Without conversation being shutdown, so it is to be anywhere in medicine. Including here. Vaccines are merely another medical product being pitched. No topic is to be off limits in science.
If the infections themselves are largely treatable (again, if infected by them at all), with complications as rare as vaccination complications – why choose the vaccination? A case has to be made. If the statistical risks of harms are similar between infection and vaccination: Then vaccination is actually akin to guaranteeing risk exposure, far more so than protecting against it.
If these data suggest that this is in fact the case with certain interventions; then it has to be discussed. And answers to be investigated. Not ignored, in favor of repetitive restating of a common surface level orthodoxy over the top of reasoned debate.
Every medical practitioner lives the constant pendulum, beginning at medical school with the common phrase: “we know for certain we taught you at least 50% incorrect gobbledegook, but we do not know which 50% – and are going to further change our mind, in all directions, on each topic (and back again) at least quarterly“. Another reason why this taboo is so strange. No doctor denies this history/present either.
If the body completely clears an infection, on its own, relatively symptom free in nearly all cases – I am sorry; but that has to be considered. And likely does not require any vaccination, based on predictive models for “possible”, “maybe” future related cancers.
Especially when that pitch, if successful, results in (LITERAL [!]) limitless, unending free money in the form of compulsory or guideline mandated vaccines. A new customer born every minute (LITERALLY [!]). Forever (LITERALLY [!]). Just be a little bit less of a credulous rube where your health is concerned. Again, I am not saying don’t get them – just ask questions. Just consider if MAYBE free money, mandated by law, forever, MIGHT inspire potential corruption. Just give everything a second look. They will still sell them to you later. Believe me.
☼ How To Double Your Money Overnight – Legally!
When thinking about something that doubles profit for a company overnight (eg like vaccinating boys and girls with HPV9 of ~200-300+ known strains) – the association would want a reasonably strong theory as to how the virus is almost certainly causal in a cancer outcome decades later. And to have had someone think about the (overwhelming majority) of cases, where the virus is cleared, and there was no cancer. Or there was no infection, and there was cancer. And address that. Openly. Along with what we expect to see from this mass vaccination: and then a trial to see if that is indeed the outcome. Before handing over public health to an insidious, necessarily profit motivated, incentive misaligned, industry with a very questionable historic record for caring about long-term customer (*patient) well being.
Or think about the fact that 98% of people got measles before age 18, prior to the invention of the vaccine. That is a lot. Usually it was a rash, and a 10 day cough: so, how deadly was it again? You can still be all for the miracle vaccine that delivered us from the public terror and horror of measles, but clearly it did not kill, blind or deafen 98% of all people before the first vaccine came along in the mid 1960s, right? So, just add some context. Similarly, polio was usually cleared without people knowing they ever had it.
There are extreme reactions to the infections in both cases, of course. Comparatively rare, if you got infected at all, rare but real though – you’ve seen the photos. Vaccines too have similar rates of rare, but real, serious reactions. Except, you do not have high odds of getting most of these diseases today. You have 100% chance of getting the vaccine, if you get the vaccine. Does that make sense? So, you better be sure. The illness has to be more likely to cause harm, to justify a vaccine, because they all also cause harm. And there is no “maybe” on if you will “catch” the vaccine or not.
And why are those diseases rare today? Well, you say, the miracle of vaccines of course! Surely. Right? No. Clearly that is where I was going with that. No, in fact never have vaccines had a grand success story to match the times before they existed. That is not to say they do not “work”. But both things are true. Those illnesses are rare today mostly due to hygiene/quarantine, health and natural cycles. As you saw with Ebola – no vaccine. And the Spanish flu – no vaccine. And the “Black Death” Bubonic plagues – no vaccine. HIV – no vaccine. All the deadliest infections in history, that mankind has faced, all had no vaccines. Which is a good place for a lay person to start, I think.
The rest really only physicians (or maybe only physician researchers/health PhDs) or field specialist virologists/immunologists would be easily able to follow. And they do understand it, is my experience. Not physicians, mostly because they would need to take the time to walk through it, and they simply wont. It is not their field. But they could. But honestly – it would not be worth it for them to say too much out loud anyway, times being what they are. I’d prefer that they had reviewed the data and were choosing to “tow the line“, from their personal cost/benefit analysis, rather than what we get. Which is the same talking points from medical doctors, as from Fox news weather men. Almost word for word. That should sound alarms to anyone.
I am more than happy to be convinced otherwise. The truth is, whenever you say “vaccines”, I think “which one?“. And if you don’t do that, then what have you been thinking about exactly? Alright, let’s get this started. No matter your education level, it is going to be difficult. It always is, at first. If for different reasons.
As is always the case, with any science topic, the reality is no where close to the common understanding of what is going on. With the above graphs, you will see an artificial spike in diagnosis, death and adverse events following any intervention. This is simply because we are looking more closely, by that point. Where as before that, we were not. But even adjusting for that, you do not need to be a methodologist to look at those graphs and conclude that there are some questions that need to be answered.
So, we’ll start with my first point:
Anyone who claims to be able to talk about ‘vaccines’ as a single entity, is some kind of… imbecile? Talking about the immune system, markers, and legal obligations of corporations: That could be done. But it would not result in the position “vaccinate everyone, with everything“. Or anything even close to that. As I will show.
Arguing that we vaccinate to ‘protect the immuno-compromised’ or ‘the elderly’ misunderstands how outbreaks and reservoirs work. And vaccine derived infections. And types of immunity.
Vaccines do have an important role in public health, I want to say that up front. However, the general concept of ‘vaccines*‘ (*as a category) being arbitrarily in high use – or mandated – is not a position that comes from evidence based medicine.
Indeed, it makes little medical sense. As I will show: the data against is simply more compelling. Many of these arguments apply to all scientism, which doesn’t negate them. Though some are quite specific to vaccinations.
As an example from the historical record to begin, vaccinations always seems to come into play only at the natural decline of a given epidemic (IF they come into play AT ALL). If this was no accident, it would make more sense. Because this kind of “speculation” makes up part of a very real, and highly paid, job description. That is just a fact.
⭐4.0 CANCER VACCINES AND AUTO IMMUNE SYNDROMES
It is also worthy of note, that vaccines work via (*or are) the same mechanisms as infection. When they ‘work’, to the degree that they do – this is why. And from inflammation and swelling, to hives or full anaphylaxis: It is your body reacting to infection that cause a great deal of the discomfort (or even death) much of the time. This includes difficult to pin down immune syndromes – and quite likely the same cancers as well.
Similarly, it is worthy of note that the mechanisms for cancers are not actually known. The links between several specific strains, of the hundreds of known strains, of a given virus (HPV for example) and a suggested list of related cancers, in both boys and girls, is all, to use a political expression “not a slam dunk”. Though they talk a good game. Also, “cancerous and pre-cancerous” cells are not the same category. So do not allow talk as though they are. And If, say, HPV negative cancers, of the same targeted types, made up an unknown number of cases anyway: This too has to be considered. As does not releasing trial results.
And when almost literally everyone has these strains, by some numbers – yet not everyone has these cancers (of course) – the oncogenesis causality has to be questioned. Therefore, this is a vaccine seemingly more “because we can”, with associated risks, rather than a requirement. If most of the 200+ strains of infections clear up on their own. And are not covered anyway. And most precancerous lesions resolve spontaneously; then it is easy enough to match NNH against likely adverse presentation of the infection directly leading to harm. The wide spread vaccine use is the only certain harm. It is a bitter irony, that the more any vaccine is used and more effective it is, the more true this becomes. And that also has to be recognized. And that does not mean assuming that HPV infection of the right strain=cancer. Because it does not.
Along with the long (potential) onco-incubation period, and the “30% that occur anyway“: how would this be tested already? Again, assuming causality – which is perhaps a large assumption if so much of the population has always carried/cleared these infections. The DNA may end up in the lesions. But that does not mean the DNA causes the lesions. And I have so far only seen attenuated and recombinant DNA vaccines. That conversation can still be had, but the long-term safety data is not available. And may never be, and that may have to be OK. However, this is the first vaccine, with this outcome target, that I have encountered. Never just assume in life.
It may be reasonable to assume that the presence of DNA is a causal proof (again, that is a conversation which can be had). But there is no magic genetic evidence I have encountered, that you (reader) do not know about, overtly supporting this. It MIGHT have SOME contribution to ~70% of only a 200-250k specific cancer death TOTAL, from ALL COUNTRIES in the world COMBINED. Maybe. And do we see the same sub-type of cancers with no viral DNA present…? Yes. About a third of them.
I am always happy to be corrected; but in either case, that is not a public health emergency. Apart from “maybes”, what does this offer? Or what are the specifics of the “maybes”, if there are only “maybes”? Again, that may not be a bad thing. But say if it is the case.
It is also worthy of note (since SO many people I speak to seem to not understand this); in a way, almost analogous to antibiotics and “superbugs”, vaccines are not ‘risk free’ for the population ecosystem long term either. In the case of HPV, there are other oncogenic (potentially more so) strains that will now become more prevalent. In addition to the ever present risk of an out break of vaccine derived strains of the infection being treated. Often mutated to be more virulent, becoming manifest as a direct result of mass vaccination. Without careful thought. It bears mention, because it happens LITERALLY every single time! At least that I have looked into* (*for certain sub types of vaccine). Every single one. So if this is the first time you are hearing the words “vaccine derived virus strain outbreak“, you have been under equipped to have an opinion on vaccination up to this point. At a minimum.
Which is why, if it is regarding a largely benign, reasonably complication rare, infection presentation: vaccines are not automatically magically fantastic just because we made one. I struggle to see why that is shocking to people. It lines up perfectly with everything else we do. Especially in medical science, but also just generally.
And do not get me wrong, the HPV vaccine is some impressive work. Especially for potential future implications. As is some of the Ebola vaccine work. Close to perfect. And people should certainly have the option to purchase them. We should be so lucky as to have our government fund them! But there is no clear necessity here.
And if close to the same thing is being said on both sides (*on the scientific side), regarding the annual (guess a strain/s, any strain/s) flu vaccination – one side saying “it fails 90% of the time, best case” and the other “it works at least 10% of the time, and that 10% is worth it“: that is a conversation that needs to be had.
There are no perfect studies. And no one is asking for that. Every lab test, every machine, every diagnosis does not have to be scrutinized every time.
However, if there are cases where antibodies against a specific illness, shown by an accepted means, do not predict protection from that illness – this requires a moment of thought.
Most importantly, none of these data fall on the side of blanket “all vaccinating is blindly good“. Any more than any topic of medical science “blanket recommends” just about anything.
★ 5.0 POST INFECTION SYNDROMES AND THE MAYBE FLU
We know about post infection syndromes that are quite real. And that in certain cases these symptoms never resolve. Immunologically mediated, with the inflammatory response to the infection associated cascade likely to blame. Yet we can not even consider vaccines, also activating this system* (*with aggravating adjuvants) producing similar side effects?
How do vaccines work then, if it is without the immune system, one wonders. And wild infections do not bring with them immune aggravating adjuvants. That may or may not be relevant – that is a question for research. However, it is fairly apparent that adding immune aggravating adjuvants is not the same as simply “equalizing” a vaccine to a “safe version” of wild infection exposure. No matter how “targeted” they are. And even if it were, then so too would many of the same infection risk complications come with that! It is the same immune system cascades we are interfering with.
If we lived in a world where there were no immune aggravation mediated serious medical conditions, I could see why, at first glance, this would still seem to clearly be the better option. Surely better than actually getting the real poliomyelitis* infection (*although, most people who had polio thought it was a mild flu, and cleared it, only to be told later by IG titers that they had a history of polio. But you get the general idea).
Unfortunately, forget fibromyalgias and rheumatoid arthritis (though, if you have them that may seem unkind): How about conditions ranging from multiple sclerosis like disorders, to Parkinson’s, to ALL of the cancers? I don’t know how to put this gently, but these are all, in a sense, immune system failure disorders. And, yes, some from a pathologically aggravated immune system. And none of which we particularly understand.
We do not understand why MS strikes, or why the “attacks” come and go. We know it appears to be from an early childhood exposure to an infection, or at least the presence of the antibodies from an infection indicate this possibility. Unfortunately, not a single infection, but rather multiple antibody types are found to be directly isolated in MS patients – a vast list including antibodies for rabies; herpes simplex virus (types 1 and 2); para-influenza virus (type 1); measles: the list goes on. So many antibodies. Such an aggravated immune system, who could say the true single cause? If there even is one. Luckily, for our purposes, one does not need to make claims that a vaccine plays a definitive causal role to be concerned that, for example, annual injections of aggravating immune adjutants, so labeled for their titular effects, are a good idea at baseline. Especially to avoid the gosh darn common FLU. . .
(MAYBE). If they guessed the only strains you happen to run into the whole season, and the immunity lasted longer than 3 months. Which, have they ever? Is it even sufficiently plausible. Back to cost benefit analysis.
If the flu is such a risk to you that it seems reasonable to play with your personal immune system, and trust that GSK (etal) to have your best interests at heart (oh, this time for sure): then so that is the case. Up to you. But it is not fringe science to say we do not adequately understand these immune conditions, but do know it is an aggravated immune system demylenating neurons. That is what is happening. It is part of the general cascades and cells we are playing with. But, on the other hand, you may be protected from a handful of the possible flu strains this one year, for a matter of months so *shrugs*. In 30 years time, who can say what made your immune system “suddenly” go haywire.
Still, it may be entirely unrelated. Everyone gets these vaccines, but how many people do you know who actually do have arthritis? OK, not that one. But they certainly do not all have MS. About 100 in 100k do. So, sure, it is not as super rare as you might have thought. And everything is risk. So the question becomes, all things being equal – just how bad is this “maybe” flu?
Further, it is not edge shock jocks who say these companies routinely hide, or out right refuse to release, trial data to regulators – they have a history of it. Go to the most mainstream researcher or clinician that you can find, and ask them if there is a problem with pharmaceutical data. Or raw data release. Or conflict disclosure. Or research funding turning up positive results, curiously matching whichever product that patron happens to make. No one denies these things are the norm. That is why conflict disclosures exist…(kind of). And why you have to release your data, and make it available online with the big journals…(technically). And why the punishment for research violations are so severe. OK, I was joking on that last one. But some times there will be a belated retraction, often years later, while the original goes on being cited. Topic for another day. But not unrelated.
It is the conspicuous lack of intelligent discussion that draws attention. You can wash your hands AND use antibiotics. None of this is all or nothing. In fact, no science is like that. Which is why this topic is so peculiar.
There will never be 100% vaccination rates for anything. I have never seen anyone serious claim otherwise. I have also never seen anyone claim hygiene, general health and quarantine are not effective – as they have been since the dawn of time. This is not an “anti-vaccine” argument, but a “pro alternative interventions as well”, argument. And a suggestion that they are perhaps more appropriate interventions, in nearly all cases.
And so too do you see we use them. Especially in the west. You do not see anyone who believes in vaccines so vehemently as to abandon these interventions, when it is life or death. In real life scenarios of infection. You never see any body not wearing the infection control hazmat space-suit in the quarantine labs, because they have had a vaccine and show a strong IG response.
What you do see, however, are companies claiming “100% efficacy” of their brand new (since it is topical again) Ebola vaccines, with suggested lifelong immunity from 10days or 6 month unblinded randomized trials. In one example, a trial where no one in any group became infected with Ebola (so, also 100% efficacy in the no vaccine control group then?).
But the vaccinated alone had a wide range of systemic ill effects. And post clearance re-infection. No further follow up regarding antibodies generally, in many cases. No pre screen for antibodies prior to the trial noted. But a long list of exclusions – just like in the real world.
And immediate claims like these about vaccines are not the exception. At least as far as I have seen. And the clear methodological problems are always this obvious (*though not all of that example requires change – still, the design best match the grandiose claims. Like 100% efficacy, with no concerning drawbacks at 10 days: you best have something special in mind).
Only slightly worse are the innumerable vague correlation claims of same system, or sometimes systemic, unrelated “general positives” being attributed to vaccines. Just never the negatives. They are all time-relative correlation clusters. But if grandma had a flu shot sometime before her surgery it saved her life. All I can say is, if that were true, it also gave her autism. You can not have it both ways when it comes to vague correlations. It is the same issues in all of medicine. The problems are known (*see all of open science, OxfordOT, Stanford Metric – many places now). But it is not enough to acknowledge and ignore them.
So we all have to stop doing it.
★ 6.0 (UN) HIDDEN FIGURES
Finally, these papers are not all only hidden in the sub-specialty journals. Some are on the primary WHO/CDC/NIH pages as well. Which is why I wonder if most physicians have even revisited the research on (*you would hope at least) the ones that they prescribe.
Because no scientist who had would easily come away with: “all vaccines are the same, all vaccines are great, so as a scientist I am “pro vaccines”, all vaccines – whether they have been invented yet or not!“. Which is how they talk. And pass policy, in some cases.
Therefore, there is only really one critical question to be asked; and it is to be asked for every vaccine you are going to advocate or prescribe. And it is a comparative one – what is the efficacy of this intervention (in the real world), compared to not getting this intervention (in the real world). Which is disease base rate risk, with harm of severe presentation rate risk, against the evidence for protection, and numbers of certain harm, in giving the intervention.
There is some truly fantastic work in this field. The focus best be on communicating that work, along with any assumptions, and a solid argument for why it is needed. Without coercion.
Everything is risk. And all newly approved interventions not thoroughly tested yet (that’s right, the phase trial system is not a completely thorough testing system. We see that in every error, recall and side effect that has ever been unforeseen). Nor is it open enough. Nor is it beyond scrutiny (by quite some margin). The wide release is always the real test. And that is OK. Just as it is OK that it always pits absolute certain harms, against possible harms. And, ironically again, as an infection likelihood decreases, the safety profile of the related vaccine becomes comparatively worse.
I call it the “maledicite remedium” (the curse of the cure) effect. And there is a huge difference between “outbreak” or even an “epidemic/pandemic” – and a clinically significant one. There is little likelihood that the number of serious complications from being one of the unlucky ~30 people to contract measles in NSW, for example, in any way compares to the serious complications from the mass vaccination of the rest of the state. On anaphylaxis alone, I would not be surprised if that were true (~1-8 deaths per million vaccine doses, in a population of over 7.5 million at time of writing). The questionable claims are that harming or killing people with a treatment, at higher or comparable numbers to the disease, could be posited as the superior medical option.
Just as it is questionable that these diseases (and all variant strains) are being ‘eliminated’ in the first place. Or that, even were that true, we should still vaccinate against the ‘eliminated’ strains anyway. Forever. Though a great business model for the manufacturer, it makes little sense for a community. Unless all vaccines are flawless, free, work for eternity and have no side effects at all. If a disease no longer circulates, vaccination can be eased, before the point where it harms more people than the illness it purports to save you from. “First do no harm” and all that.
Health budgets are not limitless. Novel concerns require funding. No intervention is entirely without harm. The truth has to lie somewhere in the middle. And we have to deal with vaccine recommendations being periodically amended. With items being added and removed. The logical conclusion of the current approach is, essentially, we continue to build a kind of a “herd shield” for all strains of every illness, ever. And to do this, we just keep adding more and more vaccines, until we get them all! Like Pokemon. Perhaps in a perfect world that may sound realistic. But this is no perfect world. Nor are the systems that support the research and dissemination of these products any kind incorruptible, flawless or risk free. Or monitored properly, with any ethical/legal breaches properly enforced. And that is a problem.
This is a preliminary investigation to get my own mind clear. And to have a chance to type in red, with caps lock on. However, a version will eventually be going to print. So, please do link papers in the comments that question anything I say here, or that posit the other side for other people to read. They will also be read by ASQ editors.
Limitations of field and lab titer, or any associated, tests are also welcome. This may be slightly off topic, in my mind, moving towards the “there are no perfect studies” realm. But I do think we have to be honest about it, if we are going to move forward. It is my job to pull these things apart, and investigate the people making claims. But I want to be clear – this is for science. My default deference is on the side of medical practitioners and researchers.
There are certainly times where theory driven is the best one can do. With great difficulty in clarifying aspects, or publishing/getting funding for projects tasked with a methodical searching for counterpoint to strengthen theory verification.
Some topics are just honestly difficult to study. It is why there are assumptions and limitation sections (usually behind a paywall) in papers. We do the best with what we have. It is not about taking sides, or tearing anyone down. But grandiose claims require grandiose evidence – not missing data, models without assumptions made clear, and double speak, which you would have to be in the field in order to interpret correctly.
And, because people ask, I also want to address why I have not mentioned other constituents in vaccines here. It is honestly only because I have not looked into it yet. The only item that I have seen come up is, yes, it is true that there are active placebos being used (with aluminum, and other chemicals toxic by dose).
Now, I will say that this is not entirely uncommon. To have a control with side effects can be useful, so people do not know what arm of the trial they are in. And in this way we can see what the body can do alone. The reader is likely familiar with the classic placebo trial arguments that up to ~90% of opioid effects can be replicated with sugar pills; even more effective if the pills are red. More effective again if it is an injection of saline (in the EU). It is still an important control. But dependent on the severity of active placebo side effects, it will indeed make the comparison vaccine seem artificially safer. So, absolutely, this is a conversation that can be had. But these methods are not present in all studies.
★ 7.0 SUMMARY
Ultimately, a fairly clear answer still presents itself: If it is regarding a largely benign, currently rare, and reasonably complication rare, infection presentation: vaccines, which have similarly rare, but serious, complications risk (but also represent a guaranteed exposure) are not automatically the ‘better’ risk, just because we made one.
It is antithetical, in science, to be ‘pro’ an intervention before any of the research is done or the processes/compound even invented. As a rule. And yet ‘get next year’s vaccine though‘ (?!). In any other field, that would be called out as patently absurd.
But it is also the position you see promoted.
☼ The Science Bubble
To analyze the science alone ignores the fact that these companies also have a very real history of putting profit ahead of public safety. All of them.
Even when there are known harms. They hide organ damage. They hide fatalities in trials. They hide negative trials (*routinely). They do insufficient (if any) follow up. They hide addictive properties of compounds; then also sell the antidote. The very same companies. You can’t, as a reasonable person, complain about the Sacklers and the “Purdue Pharma” opioid crisis on one hand, and then in the same breath endorse mass vaccination. You can’t say:
“J+J hiding knowledge of asbestos in baby powder and actively promoting opioid addiction is abhorrent!…But I bet their vaccine division is beyond reproach. And Im furious you asked me to consider otherwise!“.
There are as many examples of grievous misconduct as there are products.
It is beyond the purview of this entry to examine money in politics, and the downstream impacts of healthcare and prisons – but these points are not irrelevant either.
How about this: If an organization won’t release their pre-registered trial results, then their sales are on hold until they do, and they can’t make medical claims?
No, I know. That would be crazy, right? What is crazier is that most people think this is how the system actually is run. That data is handed over openly, reviewed properly, and done so by un-conflicted peers in an open manner.
Or that Government agencies enforce regulations, to hold misbehaving corporate entities to account. Or have the ability, in statute or staffing budget, to do so even were they so inclined. Unfortunately, this is far from the case. Vaccines are not special.
This is just another pharmaceutical product, no different to the rest. With all of the same potential patient benefits, and corresponding corporate profiteering influence at every step of the process.
The hard truth is compulsory vaccination is compulsory mass purchase of these products. And If that doesn’t make you uncomfortable, then you haven’t been paying attention.
It is not small money. Talking points like that are orchestrated, like they are in the rest of the industry. It is a patented product, with zero further R&D once completed, and a guaranteed lifelong, and ever expanding, customer base. Globally. Literally every time a child is born. If you can get your product on the recommendation schedule, the rest does not matter.
And the inability to question them publicly is orchestrated too. Because getting a vaccine on the recommendation schedule is forever. Real high stakes poker.
If these interventions win on the ‘cost benefit analysis‘ anyway; then, for as long as they do, sell them on that. And if they do not – do not sell them.
The fact we allowed this topic to become so taboo, among scientists and public alike, is disgraceful. But science could never be “pro” nor “anti” vaccine. Because “vaccine” is an imaginary category, containing thousands of individual pharmaceutical products.
And anyone who suggests otherwise is not a scientist; they are a mediocre practitioner and a salesperson.
JC-R (2018). This Entry is Not About Vaccination, JchronLettSc. B4-0180808. Ed16 – https://bit.ly/2vJURTt
*JC-R is currently undertaking the Harvard Extension Program in Opioid Addiction Medicine. JC-R is the medical law & research science investigator for the Chronicle LS.
JC-R writes the “CounterPoint Steelman” column for ASQ: Presenting the best arguments, of the least popular positions, for rebuttable in the same issue.
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Althaus and Salathé (2015) Measles Vaccination Not Protective: Cases Among Vaccinated Persons [Disneyland Outbreak Story], “All we need is 100% coverage of all strains of every virus, w/boosters, idiot. So shut up and buy it. & reclassify vaccine derived cases as not cases” [Summary], Emerg Infect Dis. 2015 Aug; 21(8): 1480–1481. doi: 10.3201/eid2108.150284
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[+1] Orenstein etal (2004) Clinical Significance of Measles: A Review ,“Before the introduction of measles vaccines, measles virus infected 95%–98% of children by age 18 years [AND THEY ALL DIED o-0. Nah.]..rash 3–7 days and then fades ..as it appeared..Fever 2-3 days after the onset of the rash..cough may persist for as many as 10 days! =O! HOWEVER Atypical measles occurred in children who received formalin-inactivated (killed) measles vaccine (1963-68)..high fever, a rash..w/petechiae, and a high rate of pneumonitis..caused by antigen-antibody immune complexes resulting from incomplete maturation of the antibody response to the vaccine – Journal of Infectious Diseases, Volume 189, Issue Supplement_1, 1 May 2004, Pages S4–S16, https://doi.org/10.1086/377712
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Ojha (2013) Guillain–Barre syndrome following quadrivalent human papillomavirus vaccination among (HPV) vaccine, “Equal risk as other vaccines [For what that is worth. Tho how you even tell when we bundle them into babies like this is scientifically questionable. But is it worse than…well, do babies have HPV? Was this a big problem? CA from +200 strains of HPV concentrated in the under 12yr old population? Doesnt sound right. (Maybe certain state schools). Nor does lasting immunity – I guess we’ll see. No one will talk about it, but I’ll see is what I mean, obviously. Can you wait until the brain is developed maybe? Why are we so sure the vaccines arent doing similar long term things via similar mechanisms? The answer is no one will ever know. So only if – oh read above. I wouldnt even medicate children unless there was no other option, ideally. Some really good, complicated science wasted solving some really vague, to non existent problems. And making a fortune]” J.Human Vaccines & Immunotherapeutics – https://doi.org/10.4161/hv.26292
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(*nb both are Christians, unfortunately. Humphries the superior methodologist)